In the Season of Discovery, Hunters take center stage as the sole "pure" DPS class with exciting changes that elevate their role. New runes, such as Explosive Shot, Master Marksman, and Flanking Strike, reshape the Hunter's DPS landscape, introducing a fresh perspective and promoting the engaging playstyle of melee weaving.
An intriguing addition is the emergence of the melee hunter playstyle. While not expected to be the top-performing build, it brings viability to various environments. The use of runes like Flanking Strike and Carve is crucial for making this playstyle effective. Lone Wolf, another new rune, may find utility at higher levels, but early on, your pet remains a significant contributor to overall damage.
The introduction of Aspect of the Lion, acting as a party/raid buff, adds a strategic layer to Hunter gameplay. While immensely beneficial for Horde players, it necessitates a trade-off with Aspect of the Hawk. These new dynamics usher in a refreshing era for Hunters.
Kill Command no longer interacts with Scorpid Poison, making Scorpid the best pet option.
Aspect of the Lion is crucial for the hunter designated to run a Scorpid.
Claw training is recommended for encounters like Baron Aquanis, immune to nature damage.
Important Note: Only one hunter in the group benefits from Scorpid Poison. Decide which hunter uses Scorpid, while others take Improved Aspect of the Hawk.
Hunters emerge as highly viable across all aspects of Season of Discovery, from leveling through raids to PvP. With enhanced support for melee weaving, Hunters shine in dungeons and raids. However, AoE damage remains relatively modest, especially in the early stages without access to Volley.
1. High DPS potential with abilities like Scorpid Poison and Scorpid.
2. Exceptional solo ability and leveling potential.
3. Valuable group contribution, especially for Horde with Aspect of the Lion.
1. Limited AoE DPS, relying on Serpent Spread and Explosive Shot (Volley unlocks at level 40).
2. Optimal builds demand a high skill ceiling playstyle.
3. Dead zone for ranged abilities, requiring precise positioning to maintain optimal ranged damage.
As a Hunter, two main playstyles are available: turret, relying on ranged abilities, or melee weaving, involving constant movement in and out of melee range to use Raptor Strike.
While highly mobile, efficient leveling involves minimizing downtime. Early on, practice kiting before taming your pet, and use a swing timer to optimize movement during Auto Shot casts.
1. Ensure Aspect of the Lion is active.
2. Cast Kill Command before sending your pet to the target (if a second hunter in the raid with a Wind Serpent).
3. Send your pet to attack, ensuring Scorpid Poison is set to autocast (if using a Scorpid).
4. Apply Serpent Sting after the full duration has finished.
5. Cast Multi-Shot on cooldown.
6. Halt movement every time Auto Shot is ready to fire.
Important: Arcane Shot and Explosive Shot share a cooldown. If using Explosive Shot during trash packs, avoid casting Arcane Shot as it results in a DPS loss.
2. Attack Power
3. Critical Strike
4. Hit Rating
1. Mantle of Thieves: A challenging but impactful drop from Razorfen Kraul trash mobs, providing substantial benefits.
2. Armor Piercer: Another Razorfen Kraul drop, offering significant agility and weapon damage for melee weaving.
3. Sentinel's/Scout's Medallion: A notable neckpiece obtained at Honored with Silverwing Sentinels/Warsong Outriders.
4. Humbert's Helm: Drops from Dun Garok Rifleman in Hillsbrad Foothills, contributing to your gear progression.
5. Feet of the Lynx: A powerful BoE item dropping from various level 24-25 mobs.
6. Warsong Boots (Horde Only): A noteworthy alternative to Feet of the Lynx, obtained through the Warsong Supplies quest.
No significant changes affect the best Alliance races. Both Night Elf and Dwarf remain close, with Night Elf having a slight edge due to higher base agility.
1. Night Elf: Higher base agility (28 vs. Dwarf's 19).
2. Dwarf: Gun Specialization may offer advantages but becomes worthless if not using a gun.
As Horde, choose between Troll and Orc. Troll has a slight PvE advantage, while Orc shines in PvP due to Hardiness.
1. Troll: Beast Slaying, Berserking, and Bow Specialization contribute to DPS.
2. Orc: Blood Fury benefits melee weaving, and Hardiness is significant in PvP.
1. Engineering: A staple choice providing essential gear pieces like Green Tinted Goggles and useful explosives like Iron Grenade.
2. Leatherworking: The second profession is best as Leatherworking, with Void-Touched Leather Gloves being a Phase 1 crafted essential.
In the Season of Discovery, Hunters step into the spotlight as the primary DPS class, enriched with engaging playstyles and new runes. From the excitement of melee weaving to the strategic choices between aspects, Hunters offer a dynamic and versatile experience. With high viability across all content, mastering the intricacies of Hunter gameplay promises a rewarding journey.
Embark on your adventure as a Hunter in the Season of Discovery. Whether you weave through the melee, unleash precise ranged attacks, or support your party with Aspect of the Lion, may your arrows fly true and your victories be plentiful. Best of luck in your exploits as a Hunter, and may this season bring you glory in the world of Azeroth!