MoP Hunter Talent and Spec Deep Dive

Morynne —  November 27, 2011 — 6 Comments

What with this being a big Star  Wars Beta weekend, Blizzard had to do something, so they gave us the MoP talent calculator! (This is far later than I expected, mostly because I was playing on my Imperial Agent and having a great time.)

You can find it linked off of the main WoW site here, and it’s worth noting that this is a snapshot in time, and these things may change as we get closer to MoP coming out.

The MoP Talent Tree for Hunters

I’m not going to go through the whole talent tree, just talk about what talents I feel will be used for what circumstance.

For Level 15, I can see Venom Tipped Arrows be the common use for raiding and instancing just because of the additional damage being put out.  For extreme soloing I’d expect Frozen Arrows because it will slow targets down, and Arcane Arrows for leveling, but that’s largely dependent on play style.

For Level 30, I expect BM hunters and extreme solers to pick up Intimidation, where Silencing Shot will be chosen for raiding, and Wyvern Sting for PvP.

For Level 45, I expect Exhilaration to be used by extreme solers, and the other two will be selected situationally.  Both have their values for raiding and other scenarios.

At level 60, these are all defensive.  I’d expect this to be a wildcard talent selection.

For level 75, if you’re raiding, Readiness is a winner, but Thrill of the Hunt has a chance as well.  Getting free shots periodically will certainly make it appealing during a really long boss fight.

At level 90, all of these are CC abilities, and will be used situationally — meaning you’ll change things around based on the encounter you’re going through.

Now let’s talk about the specializations…

Beastmastery Only AbilitiesBeastmastery

  • Frenzy – Your pet gains 6% attack speed after attacking with a basic attack, lasting for 10 seconds and stacks up to 5 times.
  • Focus Fire – Consumes your pet’s Frenzy Effect stacks, restoring 4 focus to your pet and increasing your ranged haste by 3% for each Frenzy Effect stack consumed. Lasts for 20 seconds.
  • Bestial Wrath – Send your pet into a rage causing 20% additional damage for 10 seconds. The beast does not feel pity or remorse and cannot be stopped unless killed.
  • Cobra Strikes – You have a 15% chance when you hit with Arcane Shot to cause your pet’s next 2 basic attacks to critically hit.
  • The Beast Within – When your pet is under the effect of Bestial Wrath, you also go into a rage causing 10% additional damage and reducing all focus costs by 50% for 10 seconds.
  • Kindred Spirits – Increases you and your pet’s maximum focus by 10.
  • Invigoration – When your pet critically hits with a basic attack, you gain 6 focus.
  • Beast Mastery – Ability to tame exotic pets and increases pet talent points by 4.
  • Mastery: Master of Beasts – Increases the damage done by your pets by 13%.  Each point of mastery increases pet damage by an additional 1.87.

Now here’s my take on things.  I think, based on what I’m reading here, that BM may make a resurgence — but I also think that without data we’ll have no idea.  I’ll also say that on paper, all three specs are pretty evenly balanced.

Marksmanship Only AbilitiesMarksmanship

  • Aimed Shot – A powerful shot dealing 164% of ranged weapon damage plus 1410.
  • Careful Aim – Increases critical strike of your Aimed Shot and Steady Shot abilities by 60% for targets over 90% health.
  • Concussive Barrage – Your Chimera Shot and Multi-Shot abilities have a 100% chance to daze the target for 4 seconds.
  • Trueshot Aura – Increases melee attack power by 20% and ranged attack power by 10% for party members within 100 yards.
  • Marked for Death – Your Arcane Shot and Chimera Shot automatically apply the Marked for Death effect. Marked for Death is the same as Hunter’s mark, is undispellable, but does not grant unerring sight of the target.
  • Bombardment – When you critically hit with your Multi-Shot ability, your next Multi-Shot has its focus cost reduced by 50%.
  • Master Marksman – You have a 60% chance when you Steady Shot to gain Master Marksman effect, lasting 30 seconds. After reaching 5 stacks, your next Aimed Shot has it’s casting time and focus cost reduced by 100% for 10 sec.
  • Chimera Shot – An instant shot that causes ranged weapon Nature damage plus 1795, refreshing the duration of your Serpent Sting, and healing you for 5% of your total health.
  • Mastery: Wild Quiver – Grants a 16.8% chance for your ranged attacks to also instantly fire an additional ranged shot. Each point of mastery increases the chance by an additional 2.1%.

There is only one thing that irritates me about the Marksman tree. I cannot stand Concussive Barrage.  There is no reason to incorporate a daze with Multi or Chimera Shot.  I don’t know many tanks or raid leaders that appreciate the target being dazed all the time.  This is one thing I want to see changed before launch.


  • Explosive Shot – You fire an explosive charge into the enemy target, dealing 497 Fire damage. The charge will blast the target every second for an additional 2 seconds.
  • Black Arrow – Fires a Black Arrow at the target dealing 3565 Shadow damage over 15 seconds. Black Arrow shares a cool down with other Fire Trap spells.
  • Entrapment – When your Ice Trap or Snake Trap are triggered, you entrap all afflicted targets preventing them from moving for 4 seconds.
  • Lock and Load – You have a 100% chance when you trap a target with Freeze Trap or Ice Trap to cause your 2 next Arcane Shot or Explosive Shot abilities to cost no focus and trigger no cool down. Effect lasts for 12 seconds.
  • Trap Mastery – Ice Trap and Freezing Trap duration increased by 30%. Immolation Trap, Explosive Trap, and Black Arrow’s periodic damage increased by 30%. Snake Trap – Increases the number of snakes summoned by 6.
  • Serpent Spread – Targets hit by your Multi-Shot are also affected by your Serpent Sting equivalent to 9 seconds of its total duration.
  • Hunting Party – Increases the melee and ranged attack speed of all party or raid members by 10%.
  • T.N.T. – When you deal periodic damage with your Immolation Trap, Explosive Trap, or Black Arrow you have a 12% chance to trigger Lock and Load.
  • Mastery: Essence of the Viper – Increases all magical damage you deal by 8%. Each point of mastery you earn increases that damage by 1%.

Survival seems largely unchanged, but it does force you into using Entrapment — which if you’re looking to do a lot of AOE damage, it’s a good thing to not have those mobs move all over the place.

What do you like/dislike/want to see changed before MOP launches?


Posts Twitter Facebook Google+

Morynne is an avid hunter, and prefers Marksmanship. She has co-hosted the Hunting Party Podcast, and appeared on the Twisted Nether Blogcast. For more information, click here.

6 responses to MoP Hunter Talent and Spec Deep Dive

  1. I’m surprised concussive barrage is a passive. But then again, it’s extremely useful for PVP and kiting. (Remember there is more than raiding in WoW XD)

    I feel they are trying to giving each spec as much utility as possible, allowing you more flexibility and all that.

    Thanks for the round-up,

    - Jamin

    • I don’t doubt that it’s useful for other things, but I know it’s really annoying in a raiding environment. I hope they make this a toggle so we can change it situationally.

  2. I actually think our talent tree has a long way to go before most of the choices become hard (as Blizz has stated they should be). I’m actually surprised entrapment and concussive shot weren’t moved to talents to make up for some of the underwhelming choices like intimidation, spirit bond and fervor

    15 – Depends on the amount of stacking damage but PVE is going to prefer Venom Tipped. PVP could be a toss up depending on the type of PVP

    30 – Silencing shot hands down. Speaking as someone who has played a lot of BM in both PVP and PVE I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wished I had an interrupt on a 20 second CD. Intimidation might be an option if the CD was 30 seconds or less but at 1 minute (especially now that BM will not have the talent to reduce the CD) it’s not very useful and Wyvern Sting is usually more hinderance than help especially in PVP where the dot prevents further cc.

    45 – Exhiliration is going to be the defacto choice with the other two being used situationally in PVE

    60 – If you toss out Spirit Bond which is almost useless, the other two provide an interesting choice in PVP but again for PVE Iron Hawk will be the only choice

    75 – In PVE, Thrill of the Hunt might be the choice for SV which won’t get much use out of Readiness but the other specs will want Readiness for back to back use of their big DPS CD’s. PVP Readiness is a no brainer. Again Fervor is the lower here with virtually nothing to warrant it’s choice unless the cooldown is lowered

    90 – This is the only tier where all three options might be useful and I could see being swapped around depending on what the situation is.

  3. Is there any raid encounter where boss or adds or any mobs are not immune for the daze of Concussive Barrage? I mean where can be annoying for example? Bosses usualy immune, and it doesnt bother add-nuking in my experience, especialy it can help the other fake rangeds to channel their aoe onto them more easily. But you are right, its bad they turn it to passive and won’t be our choice any more, on the other hand in my opinion they couldn’t squeeze it between the talents therefore they change it to a passive skill. Anyway this new talent system more like a new glyph system rather than the talents we used. I hope it will be fine.

    ps: I am looking forward to see exotic pets for all 3 specs as a blizzard trooper (maybe Ghostcrawler) said somewhere – although it was mentioned only as an opportunity not a fix thing

    • Bosses are immune, but if you’re having to AOE tank something that starts out spread out, the last thing that tank wants is for it to take awhile to group up. The mechanic to me is clunky, but is situationally good. I’d like to see them implement a toggle for the Concussive Barrage — if they do that then I’ll be a very happy, and quiet, camper.

  4. Really disappointed with the direction the MoP talent trees are taking. In my opinion, Blizzard would’ve been better served balancing and making the current talent system more interesting. In essence, Blizzard is baking in every ability *they* think is necessary for success based on your spec choice, then every 15 levels we get a choice of mostly irrelevant talents. Some that we used to get as part of the original tree. I realize this is pre-beta level, but they have a very, very long way to go to make this something I’m remotely interested in. I enjoy playing around with talent combinations. Sure, there was little choice in the Cata system but that isn’t the system’s fault….it is Blizzards fault for not spending more time/effort on the talents themselves. I want more options, not less. (And to the folks who love to say 739 (or whatever) choices!1!1one1!, do the math for 41 talent points. Slightly bigger than 700ish combinations). It is blizzard’s job to make those interesting and balanced. It feels, to me, like they’re giving up and trying to make less work for themselves and in the process stripping us of customization options.

    Just my rant. Love the site and wish everyone well in 4.3 (good luck, Hunters!)


Leave a Reply