We had a great run in Firelands.
Hunters seemed to be made for that tier of content. The encounters were largely hunter friendly with very few stack up mechanics, and there were many range friendly fights. Hunters were topping meters, and leading the pack on DPS until some legendary weapons were completed. As legendaries were completed, you started to see Hunters fall down the DPS meters a bit, but not out of competition.
Punching Deathwing in the Face
The state of Hunter DPS in Dragon Soul is pretty unique. Melee classes were buffed pretty significantly through AP, and casters have their legendary — making Hunters one of the only classes that didn’t see any real boost to DPS from Firelands to Dragon Soul. This caused Hunters to fall further and further down the meters, not to say that we’re not seeing impressive performance from Hunter players — there are some exceptional players out there. I know that my DPS has gone from in Firelands, top 7-8 DPS after legendaries were created, to scraping the bottom above the tanks in Dragon Soul in our 25-man raids. Did I change anything? The only thing that’s changed is gear.
Now, let’s be clear here. This is not a cry for a buff to Hunter DPS. Blizzard is up against a very difficult challenge for balancing lots of classes with legendary weapons in range, and melee not only getting the AP boost, but also Rogues getting their legendary. Blizzard needs to be able to balance Hunter DPS with the DPS of those range that do not have a legendary weapon. Does that require a huge boost to Hunters? Probably not.
Blizzard did just announce in the 4.3.2 patch notes that a small buff is coming.
- Aspect of the Hawk now grants roughly 35% more attack power.
- Deterrence now also reduces damage taken by 30% while active.
- Black Arrow now ticks every 2 seconds for 20 seconds, as opposed to every 3 seconds for 15 seconds. The total damage dealt by the ability is unchanged.
- Lock and Load no longer benefits Arcane Shot, nor is it consumed by Arcane Shot.
Do I think this is going to be enough to help us out?
I think so. The ~700 AP buff that Hawk is getting will increase our DPS enough to mimic the melee buff that was granted. Black Arrow lasting longer will give us an extra 5 seconds to proc, which should increase our Lock n’ Load procs, and with Lock n’ Load not being consumed by Arcane Shot, we’ll be sure to get the maximum bonus available.
Now this is all speculation on my part, but I do think Hunters will regularly appear higher on the damage meters than they had been, and I have a feeling that it’s going to continue to be Survival on top of the three specs for Tier 13 raid content, not to say that Marksman and Beastmastery will be far behind, if at all.
What do you think of how Hunters have fared this tier of raid content?