Vengeance Demon Hunter Guide for The War Within

Last updated on Jun 15, 2024 at 16:15 by Meyra 54 comments

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on the Vengeance Demon Hunter changes in World of Warcraft's latest expansion, "The War Within." This page is designed to help you navigate the new changes, optimize your gameplay, and get the most out of your Vengeance Demon Hunter in PvE environments.

In this guide, you'll find detailed breakdowns of the new Hero Talent Trees for Vengeance Demon Hunter. We'll explore the most significant updates, and offer insights into how these changes will impact your overall playstyle. Whether you're a veteran Vengeance Demon Hunter or new to the class, our goal is to equip you with the knowledge and tools needed to excel in "The War Within."


Vengeance Demon Hunter: The War Within Expansion Preview

Welcome to our War Within expansion guide for Vengeance Demon Hunter. Ahead of launch, this page will contain everything you need to know about the Vengeance Demon Hunter spec in the forthcoming The War Within expansion, including changes, Hero Talent Trees, and some light predictions on the state of the spec going into the expansion.

This page is a constantly evolving work in progress, with regular changes expected as updates hit the War Within beta. This is not meant to be a launch guide for Vengeance Demon Hunter, but instead serves as a resource for you to keep up to date with how the spec is evolving on Beta, and what you can expect from its playstyle and feel on launch.


The War Within Changes for Vengeance Demon Hunter


Core Changes

Vengeance Demon Hunter has received one minor and one major change to its baseline kit or Talents in The War Within thus far, the minor change is that Fiery Demise Icon Fiery Demise is being reduced to a 20%/40% Fire damage increase from the current 25%/50%. The bigger change is a nerf to Illuminated Sigils Icon Illuminated Sigils, which in its future form will only give a second charge of Sigil of Flame Icon Sigil of Flame and reduce its cooldown by 5 seconds. The first change will only be a minor damage loss, the second change will have a more noticeable impact on the performance of Vengeance in Mythic+ where it will reduce our ability to crowd-control enemy casters noticeably. Despite the change Vengeance still remains very strong at controlling enemies, just not as strong as currently.

Beyond this, a new expansion usually brings a significantly lower amount of secondaries as well as new tier sets, both of which have potential to affect Vengeance Demon Hunter.


Systems Changes

Besides all the changes to Vengeance Demon Hunter's core features, The War Within still has major implications for all specs thanks to the Hero Talent Tree system, new tier sets, and the natural reduction in secondary stats when entering a new expansion.

Vengeance Demon Hunter gets to choose between the Aldrachi Reaver and Fel-Scarred Hero Talent Trees. In sections below, we will talk more deeply about the implications of these Hero Talent Trees for the spec, and some thoughts on what looks strong and weak ahead of launch.


Hero Talent Trees for Vengeance Demon Hunter in The War Within


Aldrachi Reaver Hero Talents for Vengeance Demon Hunter

The Aldrachi Reaver Hero Tree Talents are primarily based on playing around Art of the Glaive Icon Art of the Glaive, which empowers your Throw Glaive Icon Throw Glaive to a more powerful version called Reaver's Glaive Icon Reaver's Glaive that empowers our next cast of Shear Icon Shear/Fracture Icon Fracture and our next cast of Soul Cleave Icon Soul Cleave, granting strong empowerments to each cast.

Right now the hero talent tree is relatively slow-paced due to the requirement of consuming 40 Soul Fragments, or casting The Hunt Icon The Hunt, to activate Art of the Glaive Icon Art of the Glaive making the proc fairly infrequent. With current tuning this means you can expect about 5-6 activations per 3-minute window. The passive talents of Aldrachi Reaver however offer some really strong options. Reaver's Mark Icon Reaver's Mark lets you apply a 15%/30% damage taken debuff to priority targets. Incisive Blade Icon Incisive Blade grants a strong 30% damage buff to Soul Cleave Icon Soul Cleave, making it a very strong spender, opening up talent points by potentially letting us give up Spirit Bomb Icon Spirit Bomb without it costing us much or any damage at all. Lastly Thrill of the Fight Icon Thrill of the Fight offers a second damage amplification window to stack with Reaver's Mark Icon Reaver's Mark.

Power-wise, it seems that the intention is for Aldrachi Reaver to be a fairly strong Single-Target hero tree that focuses heavily on empowered damage windows where you want to focus a lot of burst damage into short windows. However the latest updates to the talent tree might make it strong enough in large target counts as well as very strong at priority and boss damage, making it a possible or even strong option in Mythic+.

Defensively, Aldrachi Reaver does not offer any massive value, however there are a few nodes that does bring passive Soul Generation for higher healing. The choice node Army Unto Oneself Icon Army Unto Oneself and Incorruptible Spirit Icon Incorruptible Spirit also offers a somewhat active option for damage reduction when pressing Felblade, or a passive option to increase and smoothen out your healing from Soul Fragments.


Fel-Scarred Hero Talents for Vengeance Demon Hunter

The Fel-Scarred Hero Tree Talents center around the core Demon Hunter spell, Metamorphosis Icon Metamorphosis, as well as the talent Demonic Icon Demonic which grants you Metamorphosis Icon Metamorphosis whenever you cast Fel Devastation Icon Fel Devastation. Whenever you enter Demon Form, either by means of Demonic Icon Demonic or Metamorphosis Icon Metamorphosis several of your core abilities become empowered: Spirit Bomb Icon Spirit Bomb and Soul Cleave Icon Soul Cleave from Demonic Icon Demonic, and additionally Fel Devastation Icon Fel Devastation, Sigil of Flame Icon Sigil of Flame, and Immolation Aura Icon Immolation Aura when you cast Metamorphosis Icon Metamorphosis. Empowered abilities deal increased damage, as well as triggering the core mechanic of Fel-Scarred, Demonsurge Icon Demonsurge. Demonsurge Icon Demonsurge buffs the first cast of any empowered spell to cause an explosion dealing damage to nearby enemies.

Gameplay-wise, Fel-Scarred is entirely passive outside of windows where you enter Metamorphosis Icon Metamorphosis, only increasing your baseline stats or passively buffing abilities with a small amount. However, the gameplay around Metamorphosis Icon Metamorphosis windows becomes significantly more involved, where you want to make sure to get as much value from your now empowered abilities. One potential issue with the Hero tree is Burning Blades Icon Burning Blades, which buffs the damage output of Soul Cleave Icon Soul Cleave. This, compounded with our new Tier Set, might lead to very unintuitive rules for when it is better to use Spirit Bomb Icon Spirit Bomb and when to use Soul Cleave Icon Soul Cleave.

Power-wise offensively, Fel-Scarred will likely scale very well with multiple targets as Demonsurge Icon Demonsurge is currently uncapped damage. Violent Transformation Icon Violent Transformation resets the cooldown of Sigil of Flame Icon Sigil of Flame and Fel Devastation Icon Fel Devastation, both of which also deal strong uncapped damage. A very large amount of your damage is going to center around Empowered windows, and being able to properly make use of these windows, as well as empowering them with talents such as Fiery Demise Icon Fiery Demise. Failing to leverage these windows properly will likely have severe consequences for your damage output.

Defensively, Fel-Scarred offers a few powerful nodes and is comparatively much more powerful defensively than Aldrachi Reaver. Below is a list of the current defensive nodes.

  • Set Fire to the Pain Icon Set Fire to the Pain offers a minor Stagger Icon Stagger-like effect, similar to the core Brewmaster Monk mechanic, which delays a portion of damage taken, and deal it as fire over 6 seconds, and further reducing fire damage taken. This node is deceptively powerful, not only because it effectively acts as a 5% damage reduction to any major Tankbuster ability, but also because mechanics that deal Fire damage are relatively common, and would have been a 10% damage reduction to most mechanics in raids such as Amirdrassil in Dragonflight.
  • Enduring Torment Icon Enduring Torment and Monster Rising Icon Monster Rising are relatively weak, passive defensive talents. However, they are always present during the moments when you are at your weakest outside of Metamorphosis Icon Metamorphosis, making it a welcome addition.
  • Violent Transformation Icon Violent Transformation resets the cooldown of Fel Devastation Icon Fel Devastation and Sigil of Flame Icon Sigil of Flame whenever you cast Metamorphosis Icon Metamorphosis. This means you get 7 more seconds of Metamorphosis Icon Metamorphosis every 2 minutes, and the potential to be in Meta for up to 29 seconds in a row for extremely dangerous situations. The extra Sigil of Flame Icon Sigil of Flame also translates to Parry chance from Illuminated Sigils Icon Illuminated Sigils, however since most of this value will coincide with when you are in Metamorphosis Icon Metamorphosis, it is likely not going to add a significant amount of defensive value. Currently on Beta it resets two stacks of Sigil of Flame Icon Sigil of Flame, however this is in contrast to similar talents for other classes and even for Havoc Demon Hunters who only gain one charge of Immolation Aura Icon Immolation Aura from their version of Violent Transformation Icon Violent Transformation. It is likely that this is not intended, and it might change in future builds of Beta.

All in all the greater focus on damage in settings with more targets, as well as the defensive power offered will likely make Fel-Scarred into a potent Mythic+ choice, while likely remaining viable in raid content.


Vengeance Demon Hunter Tier Set in The War Within

Below are the Tier Set Bonuses for Vengeance Demon Hunter in The War Within. After the wording of the bonus, you will find a brief note/commentary that is italicized.

  • Demon Hunter Vengeance 11.0 Class Set 2pc Icon Demon Hunter Vengeance 11.0 Class Set 2pcSoul Cleave Icon Soul Cleave deals 15% more damage and has a 35% chance to generate a Lesser Soul Fragment. This will further incentivize spending Fury on Soul Cleave Icon Soul Cleave in situations with fewer targets and increase our single-target damage noticeably. The soul fragment is too random to be of impact rotationally, and is more of a very minor bonus.
  • Demon Hunter Vengeance 11.0 Class Set 4pc Icon Demon Hunter Vengeance 11.0 Class Set 4pc — Each Soul Fragment you consume increases the damage and healing of your next Fel Devastation Icon Fel Devastation by 2%, stacking up to 30%. This will be a passive damage bonus with more impact in situations with more targets, worth noting that the healing from Fel Devastation Icon Fel Devastation is extremely low, and always occur in situations when you are extremely tanky, so it could likely be omitted from the talent tree and nobody would ever notice.

Both set bonuses are completely passive, however the current values on the 2-piece bonus might have some unintended consequences on the rotation, this will be discussed a bit more in the following section.


How Good is the Vengeance Demon Hunter Tier Bonus in The War Within?

The 2-piece bonus will compound with talents such as Focused Cleave Icon Focused Cleave and Hero Talents such as Burning Blades Icon Burning Blades and Incisive Blade Icon Incisive Blade which might make Soul Cleave Icon Soul Cleave a better spender on higher target counts compared to Dragonflight, where it is currently only better than Spirit Bomb Icon Spirit Bomb on pure single-target fights. This might have unintuitive consequences by complicating the rotation for Vengeance Demon Hunter. Due to these interactions it will be hard to say exactly how powerful the tier set will be, however some early estimates likely puts it in the range of 5-7% damage on single target, and a bit less in AoE. The souls will not impact you much, and on average you can likely expect somewhere between 6-8 Soul Fragments per minute in a Soul Cleave Icon Soul Cleave-centric build, and 3-4 in a Spirit Bomb Icon Spirit Bomb-centric build.

The 4-piece bonus is almost always going to buff our Fel Devastation Icon Fel Devastation by 30%. This will likely land in the range of 2-4% damage for Aldrachi Reaver and 3-5% for Fel-Scarred. These numbers might be increased slightly if we lean into talents such as Stoke the Flames Icon Stoke the Flames.

The total expected value of the Tier Set is around 7-12% damage depending on your Talents, Hero Talents, and the number of targets, as well as a handful more Soul Fragments from the 2-piece. Offensively, this is significantly ahead of a few other tier sets, and defensively it is likely on the same level as the 3% damage reduction most other tanks got.


Vengeance Demon Hunter Strengths and Weaknesses

Strengths icon Strengths
  • +Access to plenty of strong mitigation tools for Raids.
  • +Remains one of the best specs at Crowd-Controlling enemies in Mythic+ despite the nerf to Illuminated Sigils Icon Illuminated Sigils.
  • +Rotational mastery will lead to greater offensive and defensive gains than previously.
  • +The Hero Talent Trees allows for different build options in various forms of content.
Weaknesses icon Weaknesses
  • -Hero Talent trees are fairly specialized towards different kinds of content, so you might not have much of an option if you want to maximize your power.
  • -Weaker Crowd Controlling options compared to Dragonflight after the nerf to Illuminated Sigils Icon Illuminated Sigils
  • -Defensive management in Mythic+ will be significantly more involved due to significantly lower uptime on several defensives.
  • -Poor rotational skill will be punished much more than in previous expansions.
  • -Interactions with specific abilities reinforces certain talent choices, reducing the variety of viable talent choices related to your choice of Hero Talents.


  • 17 Jun. 2024: Page added.
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