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Beast Mastery Hunter DPS Spec, Builds, Talents, and Pet Talents (Legion 7.2)

Last updated on May 04, 2017 at 16:30 by Azortharion 466 comments

Table of Contents

General Information

On this page, we present the viable talent choices for Beast Mastery Hunters in World of Warcraft Legion 7.2. We detail what each of the talents do and in which situations they should be taken.

The other pages of our Beast Mastery Hunter guide can be accessed from the table of contents on the right.

About Our Author

This guide has been written by Azortharion, the main theorycrafter of the spec. He is also an accomplished player who raids in Vanguard. You can also watch his stream on Twitch.

1. Talent Cheat Sheets

While optimizing talents on a contextual basis is the highly recommended method of setting up your build, the talent builds listed below work great for specific purposes.

1.1. For Mythic+ Use

This build is an excellent starting point for questing, dungeons, or general purpose usage, but particularly Mythic+ content.

The choice between Stampede and Killer Cobra will usually depend on whether you want to prioritize AoE burst damage on trash packs (Stampede), or single-target damage on smaller packs and bosses.

1.2. For Raid Encounters

This build is an excellent starting point as a standard raid setup.

2. Tier 1 (Level 15) Talents

Big Game Hunter Big Game Hunter Way of the Cobra Way of the Cobra Dire Stable Dire Stable

Tier 1 talents offer you a choice between 3 talents that increase your DPS.

  • Big Game Hunter Icon Big Game Hunter causes your auto shot and Cobra Shot Icon Cobra Shot abilities to have a 60% increased critical strike chance on targets that are above 80% health.
  • Way of the Cobra Icon Way of the Cobra causes your Cobra Shot Icon Cobra Shot to deal 10% increased damage for each pet or guardian you have active. This includes your main pet, Dire Beast(s), and your Artifact pet.
  • Dire Stable Icon Dire Stable causes your Dire Beast Icon Dire Beast ability to generate an additional 12 Focus over its duration, so that it generates 24 Focus over its duration instead of the standard 12.

Way of the Cobra Icon Way of the Cobra is the best choice for single-target fights where you will not often be using Multi-Shot Icon Multi-Shot over Cobra Shot Icon Cobra Shot. Dire Stable Icon Dire Stable is the best choice for most other situations, giving you extra Focus to maintain Beast Cleave Icon Beast Cleave while not losing as many Kill Command Icon Kill Commands.

3. Tier 2 (Level 30) Talents

Stomp ? Stomp Dire Frenzy Dire Frenzy Chimaera Shot Chimaera Shot

Tier 2 talents offer you a choice between 3 talents that increase your DPS.

  • Stomp Icon Stomp causes your Dire Beast Icon Dire Beast to do high AoE damage when they are first summoned.
  • Dire Frenzy Icon Dire Frenzy is an active ability that replaces Dire Beast Icon Dire Beast. It causes your pet to rapidly deal high Physical damage over 5 attacks, and gives your pet a buff that increases its attack speed by 30% for 8 seconds. This buff may stack up to 3 times.
  • Chimaera Shot Icon Chimaera Shot is an active ability that deals high damage on a 9-second cooldown which is reduced by Haste. It can hit up to 2 targets that are close to each other, and it generates 10 Focus for each target hit.

With the new traits in 7.2, Dire Frenzy Icon Dire Frenzy pulls ahead of Stomp Icon Stomp in all situations in simulations, with the attack speed increase to your pet acting as a significant buff to Beast Cleave, and also the new Thunderslash Icon Thunderslash trait which scales with pet attack speed. So with Dire Frenzy being the best choice for single-target and multi-target situations, the only remaining use case for Stomp is when you are dealing with massive, bursty AoE where you cannot use Dire Frenzy to adequately build up an advantage in a very short period of time. In Nighthold, super-fast AoE like this is pretty rare, and single-target is considered more important for most encounters. Therefore, the default choice is Dire Frenzy Icon Dire Frenzy for all situations.

4. Tier 3 (Level 45) Talents

Posthaste Posthaste Farstrider Farstrider Trailblazer Trailblazer

Tier 3 talents offer you a choice between 3 means of improving your mobility.

  • Posthaste Icon Posthaste causes Disengage Icon Disengage to free you from all movement-impairing effects and boost your movement speed by 60% for 5 seconds.
  • Farstrider Icon Farstrider causes your damaging ability critical strikes to have a 15% chance to reset the cooldown of Disengage Icon Disengage.
  • Trailblazer Icon Trailblazer increases your non-mounted movement speed by 25% after you have not attacked anything for 3 seconds. It expires when you attack something again.

Your default choice should be Posthaste Icon Posthaste, as it will make you much better at covering long distances on a regular basis. You can use Farstrider Icon Farstrider if you never have to move more than the distance a single Posthaste Icon Posthaste will take you. Trailblazer Icon Trailblazer is only really worth using for non-mounted periods where you will be moving between combat zones for a long time. Since dungeons have nearly constant combat, and World Quests allow you to mount up, there are not many places where you can reliably do this. There is a conceivably use for it for Survival in dungeons, since the spec does not have a lot of mobility when running between packs besides its Harpoon Icon Harpoon ability.

5. Tier 4 (Level 60) Talents

One with the Pack One with the Pack Bestial Fury Bestial Fury Blink Strikes ? Blink Strikes

Tier 4 talents offer you a choice between 3 talents that increase your DPS.

  • One with the Pack Icon One with the Pack increases the chance for your Wild Call Icon Wild Call passive ability to reset the cooldown on Dire Beast. By default, Wild Call Icon Wild Call grants your auto shot critical strikes a 20% chance to reset the cooldown on Dire Beast. This talent increases the chance for this to happen by an additional 30%.
  • Bestial Fury Icon Bestial Fury increases the damage bonus of Bestial Wrath Icon Bestial Wrath by an additional 15%, to make it 35%.
  • Blink Strikes Icon Blink Strikes grants your pet a passive ability, causing its Basic Attacks to deal 100% increased damage. Moreover, when Blink Strikes is taken, the pet uses its Basic Attacks from up to 30 yards away (with a minimum range of 10 yards) from the target, instantly teleporting behind the target. The teleportation effect has a 20-second internal cooldown.

Bestial Fury Icon Bestial Fury should be chosen for most situations, amplifying your main cooldown and significantly increasing single- and multi-target damage.

One with the Pack Icon One with the Pack is not worth taking normally. As of Patch 7.2, Bestial Fury has it beat even with the Mantle of Command Legendary.

Blink Strikes Icon Blink Strikes is rarely used in a competitive raiding setting. While it is very good for multi-target as it enhances pet damage significantly, which translates into more Beast Cleave damage, it is very rare that AoE is the main priority point of a fight. Additionally, Blink Strikes loses value compared to Bestial Fury whenever the AoE is bursty in nature (which is nearly all the time in Nighthold). So while it performs very well in sims, it is generally not worth picking in Nighthold.

6. Tier 5 (Level 75) Talents

Binding Shot Binding Shot Wyvern Sting ? Wyvern Sting Intimidation ? Intimidation

Tier 5 talents offer you a choice between 3 talents that provide you crowd control and utility.

  • Binding Shot Icon Binding Shot fires an arrow at a targeted location on the ground. If an enemy comes within 5 yards of the arrow, and then steps more than 5 yards away from it again, they will be stunned for 5 seconds. This ability has a 45-second cooldown.
  • Wyvern Sting Icon Wyvern Sting puts the target to sleep for 30 seconds. The ability has a 45-second cooldown. Any damage done to the target will break the effect.
  • Intimidation Icon Intimidation commands your pet to stun the target for 3 seconds, with a 1-minute cooldown.

While none of these talents will have any effect on your DPS, Binding Shot Icon Binding Shot can bring some raid utility, as it can be used as a reliable stun for fights with adds. It can also be used as an interrupt, since placing it so that the add is at the edge of the targeted area will instantly stun it, regardless of whether or not it moves.

You should choose the talent that best suits your situation, but Binding Shot Icon Binding Shot should generally be your default choice.

7. Tier 6 (Level 90) Talents

A Murder of Crows A Murder of Crows Barrage ? Barrage Volley Volley

Tier 6 talents offer you a choice between 3 active abilities that increase your DPS in different ways.

  • A Murder of Crows Icon A Murder of Crows summons a flock of crows to attack your target for 15 seconds, with a 1-minute cooldown. If the target dies while under attack, the cooldown of A Murder of Crows is reset. It costs 30 Focus.
  • Barrage Icon Barrage is a channeled spell that fires a barrage of shots at all targets in front of you, dealing moderate damage over 3 seconds (a total of 16 shots in quick succession) to all of them. It does not hit targets that are invisible or in stealth.
  • Volley Icon Volley is an activated ability that causes your auto shots to also launch a volley of shots that deal moderate Physical damage to your target, and all other targets within 8 yards. While Volley is active, it will drain 3 Focus per autoattack (about 1 Focus per second on average).

A Murder of Crows Icon A Murder of Crows is currently the best talent in this tier for 1-3 target situations. It does extremely high damage for a low cost of Focus and time, because it benefits from Beast Mastery's Mastery, which increases pet damage.

Since Barrage Icon Barrage was nerfed significantly in 7.1.5 on single-target, it is now only worth taking on heavy, spread out AoE. This essentially means that it will fall short of Volley Icon Volley in nearly all realistic situations, because Volley has much more powerful AoE in general. Barrage should only be taken if all of the heavy AoE in an encounter is spread out further than Volley can reach it.

8. Tier 7 (Level 100) Talents

Stampede ? Stampede Killer Cobra Killer Cobra Aspect of the Beast ? Aspect of the Beast

Tier 7 talents offer you a choice of various means of enhancing your DPS performance.

  • Stampede Icon Stampede summons a variety of beasts to charge towards your target, dealing massive damage to all enemies in their path for 12 seconds. This ability has a 3 minute cooldown.
  • Killer Cobra Icon Killer Cobra causes your Bestial Wrath Icon Bestial Wrath ability to always make Cobra Shot Icon Cobra Shot reset the cooldown of Kill Command Icon Kill Command.
  • Aspect of the Beast Icon Aspect of the Beast is a passive ability that enhances your Kill Command Icon Kill Command ability in different ways, depending on the spec of your current pet.
    • For Ferocity, which is your preferred pet DPS spec, it causes Kill Command Icon Kill Command to also deal low Physical damage to the target over 6 seconds.
    • For Tenacity, it gives your pet a 30% damage taken reduction for 6 seconds.
    • For Cunning, it reduces the target's movement speed by 50% for 4 seconds.

Stampede Icon Stampede is the pure DPS best choice for any situation where you expect to be able to use it on 2 immobile targets or more, while Killer Cobra Icon Killer Cobra is the best choice for pure single target applications. Aspect of the Beast Icon Aspect of the Beast is not worth it unless you have the Qa'pla, Eredun War Order Icon Qa'pla, Eredun War Order Legendary boots, as these boots' effect is nearly useless with Killer Cobra. The choice between Killler Cobra and Stampede for Mythic+ dungeons will depend on the exact dungeon. Killer Cobra prefers dungeons with few heavy AoE segments where boss and single-target damage is important, and Stampede the opposite.

It is worth noting that Aspect of the Beast Icon Aspect of the Beast becomes significantly better if you have the Qa'pla, Eredun War Order Icon Qa'pla, Eredun War Order Legendary boots. In most situations where you would otherwise pick Killer Cobra, it is the best choice since Killer Cobra loses a lot of value when keeping up Beast Cleave, because you will not have the Focus needed to keep resetting Kill Command's cooldown with Cobra Shot. As with many Beast Mastery legendaries, this relationship is gear dependent and we strongly advise simulating your own character with SimulationCraft to find out if this choice is better.

9. Pet Talents

Pets do not have talent trees. Instead, you can simply choose one of three specialisations for your pet (Ferocity, Tenacity, and Cunning). You can change your pet's specialisation at any time (while out of combat), free of cost.

Each specialisation grants your pet a few specific abilities. Currently, Ferocity provides the highest DPS in a raid environment, so it should be the default choice for all specs.

10. ChangeLog

  • 04 May 2017: Edited recommended talents for M+ in the cheat sheet.
  • 17 Apr. 2017: Checked today and deemed updated.
  • 02 Apr. 2017: Recommended Dire Frenzy for multi-target as well.
  • 30 Mar. 2017: Updates Level 60 talent recommendations for Legendary Shoulders.
  • 27 Mar. 2017: No changes needed for Patch 7.2.
  • 21 Mar. 2017: Give Blink Strikes its own paragraph to clear up confusion.
  • 17 Mar. 2017: Updated note about Bestial Fury/Blink Strikes.
  • 09 Mar. 2017: Added note about Aspect of the Beast being really nice with the Qa'pla Legendary Boots.
  • 09 Feb. 2017: Added note about 4pc hotfix for Dire Frenzy, making it the best single-target choice.
  • 28 Jan. 2017: Treat the Talent Cheet Sheet more like an actual quick glance, rather than an easy-mode thing with overly simple answers.
  • 24 Jan. 2017: Added note about One with the Pack with The Mantle of Command.
  • 17 Jan. 2017: Updated single-target recommendation to Way of the Cobra now that Cobra Shot got buffed.
  • 11 Jan. 2017: Further fixes.
  • 08 Jan. 2017: Updated for 7.1.5.
  • 30 Oct. 2016: Removed talent table at the beginning of the page.
  • 25 Oct. 2016: Updated for Patch 7.1.
    • Updated Posthaste's duration. Was changed in Patch 7.1 to be 5 seconds (down from 8).
    • Trailblazer replaces Dash.
  • 08 Oct. 2016: Fixed a small typo.
  • 20 Sep. 2016: Added note about Stampede vs Killer Cobra for Mythic+.
  • 18 Sep. 2016: Updated some talent choice explanations.
  • 06 Sep. 2016: Updated Bestial Fury vs Blink Strikes discussion.
  • 29 Aug. 2016: Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 06 Aug. 2016: Updated talent simulations and recommendations to reflect kill times in HFC and methodology updates with the simulations.
  • 21 Jul. 2016: Added talent simulations, changed some stuff for tier 1 talents.
  • 20 Jul. 2016: Added simulation results for Level 30 talents.
  • 19 Jul. 2016: Gave more explanations as to why some talents are not currently viable.
  • 18 Jul. 2016: Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
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