Community Council discussion on Hunter design

Spell reflect on Deterrence would be a fun node, but on Turtle now.

Could be a choice node between Spell Reflect and Attack while Turtle is active (Torg power.) Could be Polished Shell or Chelonian Crest.

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Cantrips. That was a great ability to use in both PvE and AOE.

  • True Aim

  • Level 30 Marksmanship hunter talent

  • Passive

  • Each successive Arcane Shot or Aimed Shot fired at the same target increases the damage those Shots deal to the target by 2%, stacking up to 8 times. Limit 1 target.

  • Distracting Shot

  • Level 52 hunter ability

  • 40 yd range

  • 8 sec cooldown

  • Instant

  • Requires Ranged Weapon

  • Distracts the target to attack you for 6 sec, and increases threat you generate for 6 sec

  • Narrow Escape

  • Level 15 hunter talent

  • Passive

  • When you Disengage, you also activate a web trap which encases all targets within 8 yards in sticky webs, preventing movement for 8 sec

Wowpedia, Removed Hunter Content, Abilities, Talents, Glyphs, it all can be found there.

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Yo Limzinara. To answer your post in Alpha. When you look at the baseline damage dealing abilities for hunter, SV cant use them. Thats half of MMs core right there. When you compare it to Ret. They get 75% of there rotation, judgement, Crusader Strike, Templars before level 10. All we are asking is for Raptor Strike to be baseline too. No Mongoose Bite is not just a Raptor Strike that does more damage. Its an entirely different playestyle. Most SV hunters wont touch MB until we get enough haste to make it out pace the constant damage of RS. Please dont go knocking other specs when they are just trying to get the same treatment of other specs. Im not going to go around saying that BM tree is fine and nothing should change, i dont play BM. I wont be telling the devs that BMs Aoe is fine dont change beast cleave or kill cleave. I dont play BM.


I never said it wasn’t a different playstyle.
But saying that “i lose talent point on this” is just not true.

If you don’t touch mb until certain gear level, your still using raptor.
If MB talent rather than give you the ability itself, just changed raptor strike to have the buff stacks you would not be saying that you’ve lost a talent point, no ?

This is consistent behaviour for basically all hunter specs.

Now, we can argue that some other classes don’t have that, and it’s true, there are diff designers working between classes, we can look at say warriors and see that they have similar setup to hunters for their spec tree intros (along with a lot of other classes)

But almost all have mandatory 1st talent that’s currently baseline.

I think underlying this Raptor Strike/Mongoose Bite point cost debate is actually the fact that the Survival tree is still a little too expensive to take some of the more interesting talents in the top and middle of the tree. Right now the choices are between: (A) flat throughput buffs; and things like: (B) increased range; Harpoon; Aspect of the Eagle; increased total focus; Kill Command restoring more focus.

For instance, I would love to take Lunge, but can’t find a build where it’s worth passing up all of the 2-point talent nodes that give flat % damage buffs. Similarly, Bloody Claws looks like an interesting talent, and I love that it’s not just a passive % damage buff, but I also can’t find a build where it’s worth skipping out on 25% Wildfire Bomb damage, for instance.

Looking at the Windwalker tree that was just released – they have 4 total 2-point nodes – only two of which are in the top two thirds of the tree – and I’m not even sure it would be the right build to take them all! For Survival, however, there’s at least 4 mandatory 2-point nodes in the top two thirds of the tree that I believe you will pretty much always take:

  1. Tip of the Spear
  2. Ferocity
  3. Improved Wildfire Bomb
  4. Viper’s Venom

And you’ll probably also be taking some combination of Tactical Advantage, Sweeping Spear, and Spear Focus. That means out of 20 talent points, you are only actually selecting 14 or 15 talents at most, compared to Windwalkers who are guaranteed to select at least 18.

In my opinion, a well-designed dps tree in the top and middle thirds needs to have enough points that you can get the damage buffs you need for the damage profile you’re looking for, and a few points – even just two or three – left over to choose some more interesting talents that aren’t just flat % damage increases.


I think the majority of the argument is based on need, depending on context.

Setting aside seasons 3 and 4 in SL bc of the tier set, mongoose bite is an absolute necessity for single target damage. Your only not going to take mongoose if your going aoe. However, lets be frank, the tree is horribly small and most of the talents are downright just bad, so seeing aoe builds with mongoose probably isnt too far of a reach right now.

With other trees your getting one spell and improving on it, with surv your getting one spell just to be forced to get another spell that overrides that spell to do viable st dps.


Curious what you mean by mandatory. Because the talent is so good or because of pathing? I have a personal vendetta against VV because it blocks WFI. Also I dont want some random SS screwing with my cc. I like to steel trap root melee LoS of thier partners. I could just see a random SS dot breaking it…

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I mean both in the sense of strength and pathing. I think the flat damage boosts are too strong to pass up, and I think in just about every content area, Wildfire Infusions is strong enough to want to get, and I agree that it sucks that Viper’s Venom strictly gates it.

I think the fix there is to make Viper’s Venom a leaf node that goes off to the side, because from a pve perspective, you’re only going to want 1 point in it to keep Serpent Sting up 100% of the time, and in pve there might be situations where you do want that 30% chance, but I’m not sure with the change to Volatile Bomb. And then there’s your point about it’s effect in pvp.

It’s not a great design, in my opinion, to have it strictly gate Wildfire Infusions and cost two points. Frankly, I think most multiple-point shouldn’t strictly gate talents on their own. I think a better design is to allow for the possibility of players spending point to get an effect and then deciding to spend more points to power up that effect.


You pretty much summed it up for me. I like the empowering effect idea. For me it would something like picking up WFI then a side node that either lets pick which WFI bomb I want to use all the time or maybe empowers each random bombs effect, aka, pheromone bomb increases KC crit chance by x%.

Starting to think some of the abilities should just be baselined to open up room for better talents. RS, AotE, carve and harpoon would be my recommendation.

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I think i’d personally argue that MB should be the baseline and Raptor should be a dps option that’s still a >>>small<<< dps increase so you don’t have to play mb, but small enough that it’s not worth a talent point invested in it, unless you actively hate mb (so prob in the bottom of the tree).

Simply because MB is the “flavor” of survival, without it or wildfire there is nothing to the spec.

I actually love this idea. It would be much more satisfying if Wildfire Infusion was higher in the tree and instead of Improved Wildfire Bomb being a 2-point basic 25% damage buff, we had talents that improved the individual bombs that ultimately added up to 25% more damage. Shrapnel Bomb’s bleed could proc Kill Shot and Kill Shot could refresh the bleed; Volatile Bomb could apply/refresh Serpent Sting and cause the Violent Reaction to targets already affected by Serpent Sting (I’m not sure that Violent Reaction is still a part of the effect of Volatile Bomb after they changed it); and as you say perhaps Pheromone Bomb also increases the crit chance of Kill Command.

If you look at Windwalker’s tree, their power ups are things like “Rising Sun Kick has a 25% chance to trigger a second time, and restore 1 Chi” or “When Fists of Fury deals damage, it has a 5% chance to refund 1 Chi, and deal additional damage.” I’m sure you could sim those out and say “alright the first one is a 10% buff to Rising Sun Kick, the second one is a 6-7% buff to Fists of Fury,” but it’s just a more interesting way to do it.

I’m not saying that we need more active buttons or that we necessarily need more interactivity in our rotation (though we might). I am just saying that I think the flat % damage buffs are uninspired and could very easily be something more interesting, especially if they are going to cost multiple points.


I like it.

More polished for sure. I didn’t think BFA rotation was far off. CDR on MB tightened up the st rotation when haste was low, the crit chance modifier on MB made getting in 5 stack hits in satisfying, latent poison made multi-doting with SS fun with a bonus if you had Volatile Bomb up and the addition of that azerite neck execute ability rounded off the profile nicely. It was kinda hectic at times and probably didnt fit neatly into some min/max pve aoe or st scenarios, but it played very well in pvp.

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Today was my students’ first day back at school. It was a good day, but it really knocked the wind out of my sails.

I’ve composed a rough outline of my post on BM and SV. I’ll work a bit on it tonight, and we’ll see how far I can go tomorrow.

(Don’t worry about this being “work.” It’s legitimately fun to me, I’m just… very tired, I really want to just eat lasagna and watch TV.)


Happy start of the school year! A post timed around Friday might actually get the most traction – I’m sure Nimox reads all of the Alpha Feedback thread because there have been changes based on suggestions in there even without Nimox’s direct interaction, but they have definitely been more active on Fridays.

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New build today, new notes on alpha forums:

My thoughts are as follows -


  • Improved Traps change is nice for Steel Trap builds, but I still see this as a niche or PvP option, and the value proposition at 2 points is dubious.
  • Connection between Tranq Shot and Intimidation/HE Trap makes Stampede/DC much more accessible for BM/SV.
  • Death Chakram increasing all damage is much appreciated. Nice indirect buff to a variety of abilities.
  • Aside from Dead Eye, all the Kill Shot talents are in one area, which feels great. Rapid Fire is similar, with everything other than Focused Aim and Double Tap in a contiguous area.
  • Swapping the costs of Legacy and Guidance makes sense, and makes that point in Guidance feel much more valuable.
  • Lone Wolf is almost skippable in the current tree for those who want MM with pet.
  • Wailing Arrow is more accessible to AoE builds primarily focused on the left side of the tree, which is great, especially for M+ where an extra silence will be much appreciated.
  • I LOVE Salvo applying to Volley as well. The fact that Salvo’s 45 sec CD lines up perfectly with Volley is fantastic.
  • Bombardment change is great, both the positioning and the cost reduction.
  • I love the idea of Bulletstorm as a constant passive AoE damage amp. The ability to get a 10 stack with Volley or a consistent 7 stack with Light Ammo is fantastic. There is anti-synergy with Heavy Ammo, not sure whether this is intended.
  • I love the Calling the Shots redesign, it is a flat improvement to the value of literally every active talent we take aside from Rapid Fire.

Not So Good:

  • CDR nerf on Lone Survivor is not ideal. I’d rather have the additional CDR and ditch the 2 sec extension if it’s a budget issue.
  • Zero other negative feedback on changes. You guys are consistently making good changes every build, kudos.

Still An Issue:

  • Hunter’s Agility still feels like a dead talent, at least for PvE. Even if it was 1 point for 8% dodge, I’d still skip it every time, because most of the damage I want to reduce in PvE ignores dodge in the first place.
  • Binding Shackles is still a bit underwhelming as-is.
  • Lone Wolf is still gating Hunter’s Knowledge. 10% crit to Aimed Shot and Rapid Fire is difficult to pass up.
  • The spec fundamentally doesn’t work without an active Focus generator. You can make a build that skips both Improved Steady Shot and Rapid Fire, which is a noob trap.
  • In general, the top tier of the MM tree feels very expensive. There are multiple 2 point nodes that are critically important to have any kind of functioning rotation, and it starts to feel like bloat designed to prevent you from taking more interesting talents in the second tier.
  • Dead Eye feels really out of place on the other side of the tree. Ideally it should connect to Deathblow, as the proc mechanic gives the second charge more value (and vice versa), because it prevents CD munching under 20%.

Suggested Changes:

  • I’d like to see Lone Survivor back up to 1 minute CDR.
  • I’d like to see Hunter’s Agility swap to a choice node with Aspect of the Monkey (8% dodge) as one choice, and a blanket say 6% DR (Aspect of the Iron Hawk?), or maybe 8% chance to resist magical damage (maybe bring back the Aspect of the Viper name and icon?).
  • I’d like to see Improved Traps incorporate Hi Explosive Trap as well, along with a cost reduction to one point, and a shift towards the left side of the class tree so it’s more accessible to trap-focused builds.
  • I’d like to see Binding Shackles cover all 4 choice node CC abilities. I’d also like to see it apply the DR if the CC effect is resisted or the target is immune, as that would give it much better value in raids.
  • I’d like to see Lone Wolf stay as it is on live - a baseline passive choice.
    • If it has to remain a talent, it should be moved so it isn’t gating anything.
    • Possible swaps are with Improved Steady Shot or Hunter’s Knowledge, both of which have adjacent nodes with diagonals to the node below.
  • It might be interesting to combine Killing Blow and Careful Aim into a 1-point choice node, so you are choosing which phase of the fight to be more effective in.
    • This would also open up Careful Aim’s node positioning, which would allow Hunter’s Knowledge to shift to the right, which would also eliminate Lone Wolf being a hard gate to other talents.
  • I’d like to see Improved Steady Shot be baseline for MM. I think having to spend a point just for the spec to function feels bad.
  • I’d like to see Dead Eye moved somewhere closer to Deathblow. A second charge of Kill Shot has little value without a reset mechanic, and the reset mechanic has the potential to munch Kill Shot CD under 20% if you don’t have a second charge.
  • I’d like to see some of the top tier talents reduced from 2 points to 1 - Crack Shot and Precise Shots in particular.

You equated MB to just a suped up RS… You missed the fact that the MB window creates an entirely different playstyle…

Yes… it is true… We have to buy RS to get MB… Then we can’t use RS…

Well yes actually that is effectively the exact same thing… We are paying for one playstyle to be locked into another one because its literally the only core focus spender for the entire spec…

Please show me where? No one is forcing you to buy Steady Shot and then down the road ask you to buy Barbed Shot. No one is forcing you to Buy Barbed shot first then replace barbed shot with Summon Dire Beast.

No one is forcing Arms to buy Slam at level 11 then replace it with Mortal Strike? No one is forcing Fury to buy Slam at level 11 and then replace it with Raging blow down the road for another point. No they both buy 2/3rds of their core rotation by the second point.


Also this…

I think personally you should stick to BM ideas. You have some good ones for them. I think personally you should leave SV alone lol. Every time you mention SV it amounts to telling them they are wrong for wanting something better for the spec they play and that SV does not need x,y,z.

I agree lol. They should have just made the BFA MB Changes and added WFB instead of all the traps and we would’ve been better off for it.

No. We desperately do. At least one more spender and some relational synergy between the core abilities(like every other dps spec). Then just fix the mastery lol. There genie those are my three wishes…

Thanks for being awesome!


I know you want Lacerate. My top priority right now, though, is to focus on reducing the cost of our tree before adding new nodes.

That said, there’s no reason they can’t do both, and I do think reimplementing Lacerate as our Flayed Shot mechanic would be great, so back to it:

I would place a choice node somewhere in the middle of the tree:

Choice 1: Lacerate, no cooldown, costs 30 Focus – Causes the target to bleed for 18 seconds, each tick has X% chance to reset the cd on Kill Shot and make Kill Shot free and useable on any target regardless of current health. Kill Shot extends Mongoose Fury by 1.5 seconds.

Choice 2: Chakrams, 60 second cooldown, costs 15 Focus – Send two chakrams weaving towards your target hitting all enemies between you and your target. Causes each target hit to bleed for 9 seconds, each tick has X% chance to reset the cd on Kill Shot and make Kill Shot free and useable on any target regardless of current health. Kill Shot procs may stack twice. Kill Shot reduces the cd of Chakrams by 3 seconds.

I’m sure these have flaws, but they’re just rough ideas and importantly, they reintroduce the Flayed Shot mechanic that I’m surprised they took out of our initial trees – I think Lacerate is the more important of the two since our single target rotation needs another button way more than our aoe rotation, but Kill Shot has more interaction with our aoe rotation through Explosives Expert. Perhaps Lacerate is enough on its own in our aoe rotation, tuned to be best maintained on two or three targets, but I also was disappointed that they took normal Chakrams out of the tree…


I have to agree. The changes are in a good direction. A couple of things noted:

  1. We are still spending too many points in the top of the tree. Having Crack Shot and Precise Shots as two-point nodes means we spend 6 points just to move to the third row. We end up spending up to 14 points at the top of the tree before moving on to the next tier (15 if you’re BM). Freeing up two or three points would go far in improving the flexibility of choice at the bottom of the tree.
  2. Dead eye does need to be adjacent to the other Kill Shot modifier nodes. I keep preaching that it also needs to be usable on targets with 30-35% health remaining. This would make Kill Shot execute similar to Warrior.
  3. Bullseye is gated behind Serpentstalker’s Trickery. This feels bad since we are already having Serpent Sting in the class tree and having no option to skip it for the buff in execute crit feels bad.
  4. Sharpshooter is gated under Volley. It may be necessary to add a path from True Shot. You could swap Dead Eye and Volley putting the Kill Shot nodes adjacent, move Serpentstalker’s Trickery to the space between the current Volley and Sharpshooter, add a line from True Shot to Sharpshooter allowing Serpentstalker’s to be skipped. This free’s up a node at the current Serpentstalker’s location. This could be used to buff Arcane Shot since there is nothing for it, and we have the buffs to Multi-Shot on the other side.

Hey Mist, good work.

I would REALLY appreciate it if you would do the following:

  1. Download “Talent Tree Manager” on Github. Many of us already have it.
    GitHub - TobiasM95/WoW-Talent-Tree-Manager: WoW Talent Tree Manager
  2. Import my Generic Hunter Tree
  3. Import my Survival Tree

Please read the ‘notes’ section under the “Tree Information” for both trees.

The goal is to present tree and node ideas for the alpha trees. The alpha trees are significantly lacking in anything ‘fun’ and I think a plethora of cool ideas can be drawn from these trees. So take your time, enjoy building different builds, and pull some ideas from it.

I know this sounds like a lot, however, it’s a wonderful resource to use when dealing with these talent trees.

Finally, I give you the authorization to share both trees in the Alpha forums, as well as individual talents.

I meow want lasagna, thanks!

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