Survival Hunter DPS Azerite Traits/Powers and Armor in Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.0.1

Last updated on Oct 19, 2018 at 11:25 by Azortharion 61 comments

Table of Contents

General Information

This page will guide you through the new Azerite trait system, helping you find the best traits and items to use. To get the most out of the Azerite system for your Survival Hunter in World of Warcraft's Battle for Azeroth 8.0.1 Patch, we recommend also reading our complementary Heart of Azeroth guide, which explains the Heart of Azeroth Icon Heart of Azeroth, the item that opens up the Azerite system.

About Our Author

This guide has been written by Azortharion, the main theorycrafter of the spec for many years. He is an accomplished player with dozen of top parses for all specs throughout the game's history. He is also the Admin of Trueshot Lodge, the Hunter Class Discord, and you can watch his stream on Twitch.

1. Choosing Azerite Gear as a Survival Hunter

Your choice of Azerite Gear pieces will almost always come down to the item level first, and the traits that it has second. Note that the traits you will look at when choosing gear are the Outer Ring traits, as these are the ones with the biggest impact on your gameplay.

The general rule is that if an item is a 15+ item level upgrade over another item, you should use it. If the difference between the two items is less than 15 item levels, then you should choose the one with the better Outer Ring trait. As we said, though, this is a general rule and there are exceptions; for example, if you are comparing an extremely bad trait (Blood Rite Icon Blood Rite) to an extremely good one (Steady Aim Icon Steady Aim). It is nearly impossible to take every single variable into account without using a tool like Raidbots to simulate the difference for yourself.

It is worth noting that if the difference between the traits is very small, then the higher item level pick will be more desirable. Azerite pieces have a high amount of Stamina, increasing your maximum health. A tiny difference in that regard can be the difference between dying and surviving, so item level is almost always king.

2. Choosing Azerite Traits as a Survival Hunter

In the sections that follow, we will look at the best traits to choose. While the traits are ordered by power, this order is not a very strict priority, but more of a guideline.

2.1. Reorigination Array

The Reorigination Array Icon Reorigination Array is a buff that is activated within Uldir when you are using one trait of either Archive of the Titans Icon Archive of the Titans or Laser Matrix Icon Laser Matrix. The Array increases your highest secondary stat by 75 per stack. Every week, it gains a stack when you kill 3 raid bosses in Uldir on any difficulty. It tops out at 10 stacks, or 750 of your highest secondary stat.

Because of this, using either Archive of the Titans or Laser Matrix is mandatory inside Uldir. You only need one trait to activate the Reorigination Array.

There are no traits that are so good that it is worth dropping Reorigination Array.

2.2. Outer Ring

The Outer Ring traits are the first ones you unlock, and they are by far the most important from a DPS perspective. You can see the simulation comparison of these traits below.

Blur of Talons Icon Blur of Talons is the best pure single-target trait for Survival Hunters and generally the best overall choice for raiding. It is best used with the Birds of Prey Icon Birds of Prey talent as they synergize extremely well, and it all adds up to an extremely powerful trait that far exceeds the single-target value of any other trait aside from the first trait of Wilderness Survival Icon Wilderness Survival.

Latent Poison Icon Latent Poison is the best overall trait for Survival Hunters, providing a massive boost to both single-target and multi-target DPS.

Wilderness Survival Icon Wilderness Survival is a nearly mandatory trait for Survival, but only the first point of this trait is good, since only the first point of this trait will offer you the cooldown reduction on Wildfire Bomb Icon Wildfire Bomb, which is what gives the trait most of its value.

Laser Matrix Icon Laser Matrix and Archive of the Titans Icon Archive of the Titans are essentially mandatory traits to have on your gear when raiding in Uldir on any difficulty. This is because having at least one of these traits will activate Reorigination Array Icon Reorigination Array, a passive effect that vastly increases your highest secondary stat each week. Archive of the Titans is generally the best one, but it is not very important which one you have, as long as you have at least one in Uldir.

2.3. Middle Ring

The Middle Ring traits are all fairly close, and they will rarely affect your choice of Azerite Gear. You can see the simulation comparison of these traits below.

Overwhelming Power Icon Overwhelming Power has the highest DPS potential of the traits in this ring, but it will lose efficiency whenever you take damage, which can be very often in some raid encounters.

Heed My Call Icon Heed My Call is almost as good as Overwhelming Power Icon Overwhelming Power, but it does not have the caveat of losing efficiency when you take damage. Both traits are entirely viable and choosing between them will almost never dictate a gear swap.

Azerite Globules Icon Azerite Globules is generally not worth choosing. Its main value comes from AoE damage, but the debuff has to actually stack up 3 times before it does damage. In Mythic+ where AoE is the most prevalent, targets die constantly, meaning that many stacks of this debuff will get lost.

2.4. Inner Ring

The Inner Ring consists mostly of defensive or utility traits.

Duck and Cover Icon Duck and Cover reduces Feign Death Icon Feign Death's cooldown to 25 seconds, and it causes Feign Death to give you a small absorb shield. Because this one is actually entirely in your control, it can be a lifesaver at the right moment. Being able to Feign Death more often can allow you to negate certain spells in Mythic+ more often as well, so it is definitely the best trait in this tier.

Shellshock Icon Shellshock allows your main defensive, Aspect of the Turtle Icon Aspect of the Turtle to also heal you, this can be situationally useful and it is a good choice since its effect is entirely in your control.

Longstrider Icon Longstrider is arguably the best "DPS" option in this tier. By increasing your movement speed, it allows you to close gaps and dodge things slightly faster.

Resounding Protection Icon Resounding Protection is an absorb shield that automatically gets applied every 30 seconds. This is one of the best defensive traits to have, as you will always be able to benefit from it.

3. Azerite Traits Rotation Changes and Details for Survival Hunter

Some of your Azerite Traits in Battle For Azeroth can have a small effect on your rotation. They generally do not change the fundamentals, but they allow you to use their effects to squeeze just a little bit more damage out than your competition.

  • Latent Poison Icon Latent Poison usage is optimized by ensuring that no target ever reaches 10 stacks. If a target is at 9 or 10 stacks, especially in multi-target situations, you should swap to that target and cast Raptor Strike Icon Raptor Strike to spend the stacks. There is no particular value in waiting for the debuff to stack up, you are only going to lose DPS by playing too much around this trait.
  • Blur of Talons Icon Blur of Talons causes Birds of Prey Icon Birds of Prey to become the best single-target talent. You should try to maintain the buff as much as possible, but this is usually not very problematic. You should not use or refresh Serpent Sting Icon Serpent Sting at all during Coordinated Assault Icon Coordinated Assault when using this trait/talent combination. Your Focus is better spent on Raptor/Mongoose to keep the buff alive. It is still worth spending Viper's Venom Icon Viper's Venom procs.

4. Relative Strength of Azerite Traits for Survival Hunter

Below we have listed the relative strength of the most relevant Azerite Traits, as far as they are implemented in our simulation tools at the moment.

Because you can have the same trait multiple times, and because some traits can change the rotation if you stack it multiple times, we have listed the relative strength of the traits depending on how many of them you have.

We are not including different item levels of Azerite pieces, because in most situations you are going to want the highest item level piece regardless. As with any rule, there are exceptions and you should always sim your own character's traits with Raidbots to be sure.

4.1. DPS Azerite Trait Ranking for Survival Hunter

Both of these simulations are based on Heroic Uldir gear with a good distribution of stats for the spec. Trinkets have been left out, as they can arbitrarily alter the results. As always, treat these simulations as a guideline, not a rule, and always sim your own character to be sure.

The traits listed here are mostly from the Outer Ring, or in the case of "TIER 2" marked traits, they are from the Middle Ring. The Inner Ring traits do not provide a DPS increase. Almost all your item choices should be based on the trait in the Outer Ring, as the difference between Tier 2 traits is very small.

4.2. Single-Target

4.3. 3 Targets (Mythic+, etc)

If a trait is missing from this list, then it is likely because it is not properly implemented in SimulationCraft yet.

You can see the spreadsheet source for this simulation here.

5. Find Azerite Armor By Trait/Power

In the table below, you can see all of the Azerite gear available to your Survival Hunter. By using the + button located next to each item, you can expand the list of Azerite powers that this item possesses (to collapse the list, simply click the - button).

If you want to filter items according to the powers that they offer, you can use the filters below.

Filter #1:
Filter #2:
Filter #3:
Reset Filters
Head Items Shoulders Items Chest Items

6. Changelog

  • 19 Oct. 2018: Added a small section emphasizing that having at least one Uldir trait within the raid is mandatory for optimal performance.
  • 19 Oct. 2018: Added note about Blur of Talons and its effect on Serpent Sting usage during Coordinated Assault.
  • 15 Oct. 2018: Added Blur of Talons paragraph to the list of contextual descriptions of some traits.
  • 25 Sep. 2018: Updated the Azerite Trait simulation to account for the latest hotfixes.
  • 20 Sep. 2018: Restructured the page and added some written recommendations.
  • 18 Sep. 2018: Updated the Azerite Trait simulation.
  • 12 Sep. 2018: Updated Azerite Trait simulation to include Meticulous Scheming properly.
  • 08 Sep. 2018: Updated Azerite Trait simulation.
  • 05 Sep. 2018: Updated Azerite Trait simulation.
  • 30 Aug. 2018: Updated Azerite Trait simulation.
  • 27 Aug. 2018: Expanded on how to use Latent Poison in AoE situations, and that the /petattack macro is mostly relevant for Birds of Prey users.
  • 26 Aug. 2018: Removed mention of a trait requirement to refresh Serpent Sting during Mongoose Fury. It is now worth doing regardless.
  • 24 Aug. 2018: Updated the Azerite Simulation.
  • 23 Aug. 2018: Added a link to the origin spreadsheet for the simulation chart. Added Blur of Talons to the rotational changes.
  • 18 Aug. 2018: Expanded further on the rotational impact of some Azerite Traits, and updated the Azerite simulation.
  • 17 Aug. 2018: Expanded on the rotational impact of some Azerite Traits.
    • Added a useful /petattack macro for Raptor Strike when using Latent Poison, and added Latent Poison rotation info in general.
    • Added note about refreshing Serpent Sting during Mongoose Fury if you have Latent Poison or Venomous Fangs.
  • 12 Aug. 2018: Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
  • 10 Aug. 2018: Added Survival Hunter Azerite page.
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