We get 5.04 in a week. Seven days, and we have to juggle all new shot rotations, abilities, and talents.
What am I going to have to do when I first log in?
The first hurdle you’ll have to get past is turning off any add-ons that are preventing you from logging in. I’d recommend starting with all add-ons off, just so you’re able to function. Make sure everything is as updated as it can get, then slowly start turning them back on. Add-on Control Panel makes this much easier while you’re logged into the game. Once you’re logged in, go ahead and sell your melee weapon, and all of the ones in your bank. It means nothing to you anymore, nor can you use it to Transmogrify.
Also, forget about standing at range, it’s not necessary anymore, and frankly, it’s nice. Enjoy your new found freedom to stand wherever. Until there’s a stack point for a boss. Then stack.
Once you’ve made it in, you’re going to have to choose what spec you want to be. If you’re interested in still topping damage meters, you’ll want to stick to Survival or Beastmastery for the time being. Once you’ve decided your spec, take a gander at your talents.
Talents are entirely different, and you get 1 talent every 15 levels. Your first 3 tier selections have no baring on your DPS, so pick whatever you like. After that, it gets a little more into how the talents impact your DPS.
Given the fact that you’re level 85, you’ll only be selecting 2 more talents for now, and you’ll get your last one when you get to 90 after MoP releases. My advice? Play with all the talents. Learn what works for you and your play style. If you’re chasing DPS numbers, for your level 75 talent, Murder of Crows is the best choice at this point. Lynx Rush is a little unpredictable just because your pet ends up bouncing around many targets.
Once you’ve got your talents picked, it’s time to learn your rotations again. The basics for all the specs are the same, but with the talents thrown in, you have some more cooldowns. The table below shows the suggested shot rotations directly from Female Dwarf’s beta site to get you started. Keep in mind, when you get to level 90, your rotations will change slightly, as you’ll be getting another talent ability. Also, if you’re Survival, you cannot clip your Explosive Shots, so spam away.
What about this expertise thing?
With 5.04, Hunters are now going to have the issue of shots being dodged if you don’t have enough Expertise rating. Hunters will now need to chase Hit and Expertise equally, and they function much the same.
At level 85, in order to make sure you’re not going to miss shots, or be dodged, you must have a Hit Rating of 7.5%, as well as an Expertise rating of 7.5%. The raw numbers for that 769 of each stat prior to any racial bonuses. (Draenei have 1% to hit, and Dwarves/Trolls have 1% to Expertise)
Ideally you’ll move around your reforging to meet these numbers, and you shouldn’t have to re-gem into expertise. If you’re a fan of WoW Reforge or Ask Mr Robot for your reforging, just change the stat weighting in those tools for Expertise to match Hit, and it’ll spit out how you’ll need to reforge.
I heard Glyphs are different.
It’s true. Glyphs are getting an overhaul again. There are no more prime glyphs — just major and minor glyphs. Minor glyphs are even more minor than before, which is not a terrible thing.
In preparation for MoP, it’s worth noting that every hunter should be using Glyph of Fetch. It will save you time leveling. As with the glyph system from the beginning, there will always be certain glyphs that will be better on certain boss fights. Be mindful of that when you’re making your selection, and keep some dust of disappearance on hand.
It’s worth noting that your Growl ability for all pets is a true taunt — meaning they absolutely will pull threat off a tank if not turned off. If you’re soloing though, this ability is priceless. If you’re running in a group, always turn off growl.
So break out your favorite pet model, tell them to be whatever spec you want, and go to town. Tenacity Sporebat? MAKE IT HAPPEN.
- Trueshot Aura and Readiness are now standard Hunter abilities. All specs will have these.
- Helm enchants are going away.
- Trap Launcher has a toggle on/off making it infinitely easier to use.
- Buff frames are consolidated, and if you’re in a raid will tell you what you’re missing.
- Mounts and Non-Combat pets have their own menu icon. (It’s a horse head)
- Area of Effect looting will work in 5.04 for all you farmers out there.
I think that sums up all the big stuff to get ready for next Tuesday. Can you think of anything big that I may have missed?
*EDIT* Adjustments made according to Whitefyst’s suggestions in the comments.