Classic Hunter DPS Spec, Builds, and Talents

Last updated on Jun 12, 2019 at 19:29 by Impakt 53 comments

On this page, you will find out the best PvE talent choices and builds for your Hunter DPS in WoW Classic.

If you were looking for TBC Classic content, please refer to our TBC Classic Hunter talentss:



Hunters have unique utility that makes them a vital part of any raid group. Initially, in raids like Molten Core and Onyxia when gear levels are low, Hunters deal very competitive damage. However, in later phases, Hunters quickly get out-scaled by classes like Warriors, Rogues, Mages, and Warlocks. In an optimized raid group, you should expect anywhere from 1-3 Hunters in later raids, but potentially more in MC and Onyxia. Every raid group will require at least 1 Hunter for Tranquilizing Shot Icon Tranquilizing Shot and for the ability to pull enemies from far away using your pet.


Hunter Talent Builds for PvE

For Hunters, Marksmanship is the best PvE spec. Beast Mastery and Survival will not be as good, with a minor exception for Beast Mastery at very early gear levels (explained below). If you want to play one spec for all PvE content, go for Marksmanship.


Leveling Builds

If you were looking for leveling builds, please refer to our leveling guide for Hunters.


Marksmanship Standard Raiding Talent Build

Standard Raid Spec as Marksmanship

This is the standard talent build that you should take for raiding. Trueshot Aura Icon Trueshot Aura is a powerful buff for Warriors and Rogues, making Hunters a great choice to place in a melee group. This build is designed around picking up Trueshot Aura while also maximizing the damage you will deal.

If you are planning to raid Molten Core, consider swapping 3 points out of Ferocity Icon Ferocity into Monster Slaying Icon Monster Slaying in the Survival tree. If you are able to benefit from the damage bonus that either Monster Slaying or Humanoid Slaying Icon Humanoid Slaying provide, then it is worth taking one of those over the extra points in Ferocity, making it important to think about what type of enemies you will be fighting in whatever raid or dungeon you plan to do.

You can choose to put all 5 points into Endurance Training Icon Endurance Training instead of 2 points into Improved Revive Pet Icon Improved Revive Pet. This is personal preference and depends on how often you think your pet will die during raids. It is recommended to take the points in Improved Revive Pet if you are uncertain.

You can also choose to pick up Scatter Shot Icon Scatter Shot instead of a third point into Improved Hunter's Mark Icon Improved Hunter's Mark if you anticipate having to PvP at all outside of the raids and do not want to change specs. It is also worth noting that only 1 Hunter in the raid needs to use Hunter's Mark Icon Hunter's Mark for all hunters to benefit from it. This means that if you have more than 1 Hunter in a raid, one of you should take all 5 points in Improved Hunter's Mark instead of either Ferocity Icon Ferocity or Hawk Eye Icon Hawk Eye, so that all the Hunters will benefit from the extra Attack Power.


Marksmanship/Survival Raiding Talent Build

Raid Spec as Marksmanship and Survival

This is the same idea as the standard raid spec above, but instead of building into BM as a secondary spec, you build into Survival to take Surefooted Icon Surefooted. This is only worthwhile to do if you you are at 6% hit or less without the talent, and can make use of the extra 3% hit to reach the cap or at least get closer to the cap. This is a much more popular spec very early on, but quickly becomes worse once you start getting dungeon and raid gear at Level 60.


Beast Mastery Raiding/Solo Talent Build

Standard Raiding/Solo Spec as Beast Mastery

If you want to raid as Beast Mastery, this is the spec to use. Before you start getting raid gear, this will actually out-damage the standard raid spec. However, that does not take into account the extra AP you give to 4 party members, and will be worse overall than the standard raid spec. You should only use this spec if you are in dungeon gear and the members in your group do not benefit from Trueshot Aura Icon Trueshot Aura.

This is also a great spec for solo play. Playing as a Beast Mastery hunter, you can farm some dungeons solo, the most notable being Maraudon. Farming solo as a Hunter is a great way to make gold early on, without relying on the auction house or professions.


Survival Raiding Talent Build

Standard Raiding Spec as Survival

Survival is the worst of the Hunter specializations. You should not play this spec if you want to be optimal. Not only will your individual damage be worse than Marksmanship Hunters, but you do not bring Trueshot Aura Icon Trueshot Aura, making you significantly less valuable to the raid. This spec technically becomes better for personal damage when you reach very high levels of Agility, due to Lightning Reflexes Icon Lightning Reflexes, but you will not reach that amount of Agility until you are in full Naxxramas gear with full buffs and consumables. Even then, only your personal DPS will be slightly higher, and your overall contribution to the raid will still be lower, since you do not bring Trueshot Aura.


Hunter Talent Builds for PvP

You can find PvP talent builds for Hunters in our Hunter PvP section.



  • 12 Jun. 2019: Page added.
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