Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Rivkah

Hunter FAQ 4.x WotLK (read this before asking questions)

35 posts in this topic

I have attempted to update this FAQ for Cataclysm (level 85). Note that a lot of information is still not settled, but this should give people a bit of a start. Please send corrections/suggestions via PM.

This FAQ is not meant to cover everything covered in the existing threads but rather to cut down on the amount of repetitive (and infraction inducing) posts that keep popping up. Please also consult the more detailed threads if your question is not covered here before posting. If you have any suggestions to be added to this FAQ please PM them to me to keep the clutter low.

Q) Which spec does the most dps?

A) Most recent beta reports put SV as the strongest hunter spec, with both BM and MM significantly behind. However there may have been changes since then (and more tweaks are likely forthcoming in the early weeks of the expansion) so this may change. Additionally, if your raid is missing a critical buff that you can only provide in another spec (such as 10% AP, Heroism/Bloodlust, % Stats or Stamina), it may be worth running as that spec if the raid benefit outweighs your personal dps loss.

Q) How much AP and crit do I get for agility?

A) 1 agil gives 2 AP and approximately .003% crit. 324.85 agil = 1% crit. This is prior to including any multipliers such as Mail Armor Specialization (5% agil), Kings/Wild (5% agil), Into the Wilderness (15% agil) and Hunting Party (2% agil). For more details about stat conversions see http://elitistjerks.com/f15/t29453-combat_ratings_level_85_cataclysm/.

Q) Do pets inherit AP from the strength on hunter gear?

A) No. Pet consumables are also no longer available.

Q) Should I wear leather with good stats?

A) Generally no, because if you have all 8 armor slots filled with mail, you will receive the 5% agility bonus from Mail Armor Specialization. It's possible that if you have several quality leather pieces it might be worth giving up the bonus, but for one piece it's unlikely to be worth it.

Q) What stats should be my priority? How can I compare gear? How should I gem?

A) Theorycrafting isn't complete yet for Cataclysm but at the moment agility seems to be worth significantly more than other stats and it's believed that the minimum socket bonus worth giving up agility for may be fairly high. Note that nightmare tears are no longer worth using since you can get hit from blue sockets and int is no longer valuable to hunters. Using agil/hit gems in good blue sockets might be worth it (you can always reforge extra hit off your gear). It's unclear at this time which stat is preferable yellow sockets and this may vary by spec. Keep in mind that haste's value has sweet spots based on how it allows your shots to flow and keeps your focus in balance. Until the relentless earthsiege diamond meta requirements are fixed (currently requires more blue than red) you should use another meta that's easier to activate such as thundering skyflare diamond. You can use Zeherah's Hunter DPS Analyzer to compare gear and gems, but take into account the formulas aren't entirely accurate yet.

Q) How important are my set bonuses?

A) 2pc T11 is a fairly weak bonus, but 4pc T11 is reasonably strong for SV.

Q) What is the hit cap?

A) The hit cap for a hunter is 8% (960 hit rating will get you 7.99%). If you are a draenei you will only need 840 hit rating (which is 6.99%) but keep in mind that pets will not inherit the racial hit buff. Draenei buff is self only now so all other hunters will need to cap from gear alone. Pet hit no longer rounds down.

Q) How does hunter focus regeneration work?

A) At this time base hunter focus regeneration seems to be about 4 fps (focus per second). Our methods for testing are a bit crude so this may be slightly off. 1% haste increases your focus regeneration by 1%, so 10% haste for instance would increase your base regen to 4.4 fps. It looks like all attack speed buffs will affect your focus regen in addition to your attack speed. The exception to this is hunting party and equivalent buffs, which is currently bugged and will actually reduce your regen by 10% instead of increasing it.

Q) What does haste and attack speed do for me?

A) Haste and attack speed both are treated similarly and both increase your autoshot and steady/cobra shot attack speed by the percentage listed (or in the case of rating the percentage it converts to). The effect of multiple haste buffs is multiplicative, except in the case of rating based buffs, which get added to your other rating before being converted to a percentage. To calculate your steady/cobra shot attack speed with various haste/speed buffs you can use the haste calculator. Focus regeneration is also increased by the percentage of haste or attack speed as described above. Hunter DoT tick speed/ticks are not increased by haste or attack speed, and neither is the global cooldown, which is 1 second. Pet attack speed is increased by all haste or attack speed buffs that are not specifically labeled as ranged only. Pet focus regen seems to be increased only by haste not specifically labeled as ranged only and not by attack speed buffs on the hunter such as heroism/bloodlust.

Q) Does weapon speed matter?

A) Special shots are now mostly normalized for weapon damage contribution. The base weapon damage still plays a small part in the shot damage (which gives a slight edge to slower weapons), but not a large enough amount for it to greatly impact weapon choice as the bulk of the damage comes from the AP contribution which is equal for all weapons. Weapon dps and stats will be a much larger factor in your damage. For MM a faster weapon may be slightly better due to increased procs. For SV and BM the weapon dps factors into less shots and the stats on the weapon are likely to impact your damage more heavily.

Q) Does improved serpent sting do damage when refreshing serpent sting?

A) No, using chimera shot or cobra shot to refresh serpent sting will not trigger improved serpent sting's damage. The only time it will apply is when casting serpent sting manually on the target (or via multi-shot with the serpent spread talent). If you apply a serpent sting to a target that already has one up however, it will still do damage in addition to updating the duration of your current serpent sting.

Q) Why does my dps suck?

A) This can be caused by a number of factors. Here are some things to look at:

  • You may not be speccing and gearing optimally- threads on this forum can help you with this
  • You may not be following the correct shot priority
  • You may not be managing your focus well. Make sure that you anticipate your focus needs as your high damage shots are coming close to off cooldown so you don't tap yourself out before they're available
  • You may not be properly utilizing the bonuses from your spec, such as Improved Steady Shot or Master Marksman for MM, Focus Fire for BM and Lock and Load for SV
  • You may not be effectively utilizing and timing your cooldowns so that the buffs provided by them are stacked for more damage
  • You may not be dpsing well on the move. Make sure to keep movement down to what's necessary and try to time your movements efficiently. Make sure you're still using your instant shots when you have to move and try to let your autoshots get off as you reposition
  • You may be clicking- generally clicking abilities that are heavily used in combat instead of using hotkeys will lead to lower dps
  • You may not have an interface setup to track everything you need to track effectively. There's a UI thread which may give you some ideas about how to improve your setup.
  • You may have high latency, this will lower your potential dps
  • You may be missing key raid buffs- this will lower your damage but should also have a proportionate effect on others in your raid.

Q) What pet should I use for raid dps?

A) Currently all pets of the same family should do the same dps. Ferocity pets are generally preferred because they have more direct damage buffs (Spider's Bite, Rabid, Call of the Wild and Shark Attack), but in some cases cunning pets may be a solid option since they have several bonuses as well (Owl's Focus, Feeding Frenzy, Wolverine Bite and Roar of Recovery) and all pet families inherit the same AP from the hunter. Tenacity pets generally are too lacking in damage buff talents to be terribly strong for raiding. In most cases you will want to choose a pet based on what raid buffs may be needed by your raid, as many pets provide full buff or debuff replacements. For full details on which pet to choose to fill a raid buff void, see Petopia's Pet Usage Flowchart and Ability Spreadsheet.

Q) What do all the acronyms mean?

A)

  • BM = beast mastery
  • MM = marksmanship
  • SV = survival
  • SS = ambiguous but generally means steady shot
  • SrS/SpS = serpent sting
  • ES = explosive shot
  • KS = kill shot
  • CS = chimera shot
  • CoS = cobra shot
  • AS = ambiguous, could mean arcane shot or aimed shot depending on context
  • AiS = aimed shot
  • MS = multi shot
  • CotW = call of the wild
  • KC = kill command

Q) What professions will benefit me most as a hunter?

A) You can compare different profession benefits using the spreadsheet or web based version. The best professions from a pure dps perspective are:

  • Leatherworking: improved bracer enchant for 130 agil (which equates to an 80 agil gain plus getting 50 agil in exchange for 65 crit or haste). Because agility is worth so much more than other hunter stats, this is currently the best profession for hunters
  • Jewelcrafting: 3 improved gems for a potential 81 agil gain (or the stat of your choice)
  • Alchemy: 80 agil bonus to flasks
  • Blacksmithing: 2 additional gem sockets for a potential 80 agil gain (or the stat of your choice)
  • Enchanting: 2 40 agil enchants to ring for a potential 80 agil gain
  • Inscription: improved shoulder enchant for an 80 agil gain

Other professions which provide lower dps benefits but are still provide a decent dps benefit for a hunter are:

  • Engineering: nature damage glove tinker (or the WotLK haste version) as well as various toys which aren't damage related and the option to craft a helm on par with the T11 helm
  • Herbalism: lifeblood 2 minute cooldown gives 480 haste for 20 sec
  • Skinning: 80 crit rating
  • Tailoring: swordguard embroidery cloak enchant procs for 800 AP for 15 sec

Professions which provide little to no dps benefit are:

  • Mining: 60 stamina

Q) What other hunter resources may be useful to me?

A) There are many excellent hunter resources available, here are a few that may be of use:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

An additional Q/A pair for the many variants of "Should I refresh my sting as MM when I get buff X?" would be a good idea too, that crops up every couple of months for a few pages.

Perhaps one about Glyph of Chimera Shot's sometimes hard to understand behaviour in the sheet, or glyphs in general.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now, engineer can enchant their cloak, boots & gloves with BOTH engineer and regular enchant. however the nitro speed does only the rocket boots thing (removal of 24 crit). May be bugged but now engineering is actually a huge tradeskill

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Has anyone done the math for BM's Focus Fire? It seems as though it may be a DPS loss, though I can only support that with my gut feeling. "Stealing" 30% haste from your pet to gain 20 Focus and 15% ranged haste seems lackluster at best.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Has anyone done the math for BM's Focus Fire? It seems as though it may be a DPS loss, though I can only support that with my gut feeling. "Stealing" 30% haste from your pet to gain 20 Focus and 15% ranged haste seems lackluster at best.

I wouldn't be too sure.

I mean if you realize that:

a) The speed increase for the pet does not affect its special attacks, which are a significant portion of its damage

b) The pet is roughly 40% (?) of the hunters dps

c) BM hunter's biggest portions of damage come from Auto attacks, Arcane Shots and Steady Shots all quite positively influenced by the attack speed increase.

I think focus fire is worth it in general; but I do think you have to be very cautious when to use it. Using it during Bestial Wrath for example might turn out to swing the other way.

I don't have any good logs or comparisons, nor a BM spec; so I can't check atm. But if you just start by comparing the pet's white damage to your auto shot damage. If your auto shot damage is already 2x or more the dps from your pet's Focus Fire already won pretty much :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also keep in mind that you're not really taking 30% haste from him for 15 seconds, you're sacrificing an average of 18% attack speed from him, since he's going to keep stacking frenzy every 3 seconds until you get to 5 stacks again, so on average over a course of 15 seconds he'll have 12% attack speed (3 seconds at 0%, 3 seconds at 6%, 3 seconds at 12%, 3 seconds at 18%, 3 seconds at 24%) assuming you use focus fire as soon as the 5th stack of frenzy procs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Now, engineer can enchant their cloak, boots & gloves with BOTH engineer and regular enchant. however the nitro speed does only the rocket boots thing (removal of 24 crit). May be bugged but now engineering is actually a huge tradeskill

Yes, the agility from the cloak enchant stacks with the 22agi. So comparing blacksmithing to engineering you end up with 17(base)agility vs 240 haste on a 60 second cooldown, ontop of the utility of rocket boots, especially now that with improved steady shot movement(or lack thereof) is incredibly important.

In addition while no DPS is gained, the 45 stamina does stack from the helm enchant, adding just a touch of survivability for free.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've updated the professions list to indicate the engineering enchants are currently stacking. I am wondering however if this is really intended or if they plan to remove the stat bonuses from everything except the gloves. It doesn't make a lot of sense for engineering to have quite so many benefits relative to other professions. So I'd be careful choosing engineering based on what could be a temporary bug.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Also keep in mind that you're not really taking 30% haste from him for 15 seconds, you're sacrificing an average of 18% attack speed from him, since he's going to keep stacking frenzy every 3 seconds until you get to 5 stacks again, so on average over a course of 15 seconds he'll have 12% attack speed (3 seconds at 0%, 3 seconds at 6%, 3 seconds at 12%, 3 seconds at 18%, 3 seconds at 24%) assuming you use focus fire as soon as the 5th stack of frenzy procs.

It might be worth pointing out that it is possible to eat the pet's stacks at 4 if you pop Focus Fire on the spot it comes off CD. The autocaster isn't the fastest caster out there. It does a pretty good job at automation, but in a 15 second rotation it might miss a total of 0.2 seconds, or heck even more. I noticed this a few times when I ran a full Steady run with Focus Fire macroed in, and set it to mousewheel up and down. It wasn't every time, but it happened.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I've updated the professions list to indicate the engineering enchants are currently stacking. I am wondering however if this is really intended or if they plan to remove the stat bonuses from everything except the gloves. It doesn't make a lot of sense for engineering to have quite so many benefits relative to other professions. So I'd be careful choosing engineering based on what could be a temporary bug.
The crit from the Nitro boots have been removed and the haste buff from the gloves has been lowered from 340 haste to 240 haste. The 23 agility to cloak and 45 stamina to helm remains.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

240 haste (at 12 seconds per minute) is still an average of 48 haste rating. Giving that plus 23 agility and 45 stamina still seems a lot compared to other professions. I'm also told by an engineer in my guild that he's having trouble stacking the glove enchant so I'm not sure if it's working consistently for everyone.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agility is now 2 Attack Power per 1 Agility but has the amount of crit we get the same or has it changed as well?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That was fixed last week however weapon speed matters anyways. using my 3.0 277 arena bow i get much higher shot damage as with my 277 Zod's. However the dps is relatively close and could be just affected by rng.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought that problem was with incorrect weapon damage not about the weapon speed. So would your shots hit hard with 271 LK bow over 277 zod?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are two separate issues. One was that some weapons were initially getting much higher dps than they should have for their ilevel (due to an issue with the way the ammo conversion was applied to some weapons). This problem was resolved within a day or two of 4.0.1 coming out.

The second issue is that shots affected by weapon damage are not normalized for speed, so slower weapons will contribute more damage to those shots. Previous to 4.0, steady shot was fully normalized for speed so although the other shots weren't completely (the AP portion was normalized but the weapon damage portion wasn't) it was less of a factor. There's been no indication by Blizzard that the consider the current implementation to be a bug or problematic (or any explanation as to why steady was de-normalized), so it's unclear if they'll address it at any point or if slow weapons will continue to dominate in the future.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Previous to 4.0, steady shot was normalized for speed so although the other shots weren't...

Since a patch in Vanilla all shots have had their weapon damage normalized. Steady Shot was still different in that when Ammo DPS was to the damage calculation for Wrath they also normalized it. I would think that the removal of normalization would be a very large bug because I doubt they would want to return to where a very slow blue is much better than a faster epic, which is why it was changed in the first place.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There's a good chance that the lack of weapon damage normalization is intended, as all melee classes function that way.

If I understand it correctly, previously shot damage was based on weapon dps and now its based on weapon damage? As long as attack power is normalized, this isn't necessarily a bad change, it just means hunters will favor slower weapons like pretty much every other physical damage class/spec does currently, with rogues being slightly oddball because of poisons and dual wield and wanting fast offhands for dp and the like.

Proper itemization prevents hunters from having the option of using an extremely slow blue wep vs a faster epic, just don't put really slow blues in the game.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The shot damage formulas for shots with weapon damage contribution seem to look something like this:

((WeaponDPS + (AP)/14) * WeaponSpeed) + ((AP) * ShotAPModifier) + ShotBaseDamage

This means the AP factors in twice, once modified by weapon speed, and once as a flat value. The flat value is not the problem. The issue is the first part of the equation where the AP value is modified by the weapon speed instead of a normalized amount. It means the AP contribution to the weapon damage will fluctuate significantly based on speed.

According to this math, if you have a 300dps weapon and 9k AP, a difference in .1 speed will amount to a 94 damage difference in the shot damage before calculating in any multipliers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
There's a good chance that the lack of weapon damage normalization is intended, as all melee classes function that way.

If I understand it correctly, previously shot damage was based on weapon dps and now its based on weapon damage? As long as attack power is normalized, this isn't necessarily a bad change, it just means hunters will favor slower weapons like pretty much every other physical damage class/spec does currently, with rogues being slightly oddball because of poisons and dual wield and wanting fast offhands for dp and the like.

Proper itemization prevents hunters from having the option of using an extremely slow blue wep vs a faster epic, just don't put really slow blues in the game.

Only this is not the case.

Apart from enh shamans (although I don't know how that changed after WotLK) all melee dps have their weapon normalized.

And it SHOULD be, because an instant special is totally independent on weapon speed. Faster weapons can't use instants more often than slower weapons.

The reason most classes still prefer that slower weapons is simply because of the average weapon damage.

Saying that shot damage shifted from weapon dps to weapon damage is a bit of mistake. The only thing that changed is that people simplified the formula, so it seems there is something different when there is not.

Basically the formula is as follow for normalized damage (normalized speed is 2.8):

Shot Damage = Weapon Damage + ( AP / 14 * 2.8 ) + ( AP * ShotAPModifier ) + Static Shot bonus

Now Weapon damage is a range, which is the main reason you see differences between individual shots; so for convenience sake we often go for average weapon damage. There are 2 ways to obtain this:

1. Average Weapon Damage = ( Min Damage + Max Damage ) / 2

2. Average Weapon Damage = Weapon DPS * Weapon Speed

Take number 2 and substitute that into the formula and you get:

Shot Damage = (Weapon DPS * Weapon Speed) + ( AP / 14 * 2.8 ) + ( AP * ShotAPModifier ) + Static Shot bonus

That's the normalized formula. Take the unnormalized formula and you get:

Shot Damage = (Weapon DPS * Weapon Speed) + ( AP / 14 * Weapon Speed ) + ( AP * ShotAPModifier ) + Static Shot bonus

Now you can simplify that (due to underlined common multipliers) to this:

Shot Damage = (Weapon DPS + (AP / 14)) * Weapon Speed + ( AP * ShotAPModifier ) + Static Shot bonus

In the end though you're still talking about a shot consisting of a summation of 4 factors:

1) Average Weapon Damage

2) General AP contribution

3) Shot dependent AP contribution

4) Static Shot bonus

Now 1 is part of the reason why even with normalized numbers people still prefer slower weapons for instants. Because that number will always be higher.

Nr 2 should ideally be normalized to make sure that the damage is consistent for all hunters. The only exceptions are when the actual ability can be increased or decreased depending on speed. Like auto attack (faster weapons attack more often); on next hit abilities (like the old heroic strike); speed dependent procs (like the old windfury; where faster procced more often but hit for less).

Keeping this normalized always gives you 20% of your RAP as bonus damage; getting this unnormalized however causes huge disparities.

For example the difference between a 2.8 weapon and a 3.0 weapon with 14000 RAP is 200 damage. That might not seem like much but that's an 7,14% increase from AP contribution just because you picked a slower weapon.

A disparity like that might cause a seemingly inferior slow weapon to outclass a superior fast weapon.

Number 3 is of course shot dependent; as is 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Has anyone been able to verify if the focus regeneration bug has been fixed as of patch 4.0.3a?

If you mean the bug with windfury/hunting party/etc. reducing focus regen instead of increasing it, no it's still broken, I just doublechecked. Improved serpent sting has been fixed to be based off physical hit, crit and crit dmg multiplier, and pets now properly inherit AP the hunter receives from % AP buffs. Those are the main bugs I know of that were fixed in 4.0.3a.

The ravager debuff being affected by diminishing returns, draenei hit buff not being inherited by pets and most likely other bugs I'm forgetting are not fixed in 4.0.3a. Also, aimed shot from procs is based off 95% weapon damage whereas aimed shot from slow cast is based off 100%.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Also, aimed shot from procs is based off 95% weapon damage whereas aimed shot from slow cast is based off 100%.

Might not be a true bug. One of the builds that were datamined at MMO-Champ initially contained a 95% weapondamage scaling !Aimed Shot, later the information was pulled. At the time I thought it was just faulty information, but it is in?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Might not be a true bug. One of the builds that were datamined at MMO-Champ initially contained a 95% weapondamage scaling !Aimed Shot, later the information was pulled. At the time I thought it was just faulty information, but it is in?

It's definitely implemented that way. If you test aimed shot you can see the damage difference between the proc version and the slow cast version (you can also see the difference in the ingame tooltips). I really find it hard to believe it's intended though given the wording on Master Marksman says nothing about the proc aimed shot doing less damage. It may be something they put in for lower levels and forgot to adjust.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.