[DF] Hunter Class and Survival Talent Tree Feedback

First, I am ecstatic over the amount of feedback we’ve gotten from Nimox and the quick iterating on our trees. There are many things I’m looking forward to in both the class and spec trees. Below are simply my thoughts on a few ways to make them better.

I’d like to begin with a suggestion regarding Hunter’s lack of utility, then move to a somewhat abstract philosophical suggestion regarding several multi-point nodes in both trees, and conclude with feedback on specific talents.


Utility

Issue:

Hunters lack utility. There is little reason to take a Hunter over any other class. Lust, immunity, and cc are all redundant, and are made redundant by classes that also bring raid-wide buffs, debuffs, or other utility.

Proposal:

A raid cooldown that grants our pet buffs to the raid for a short period of time.

In other words:
• Rallying Cry (essentially) for Tenacity Pets
• Raid-wide Leech for Ferocity Pets
• Stampeding Roar (essentially) for Cunning Pets

Explanation:

As stated above, Hunters currently lack a utility-based reason to be brought to a raid. This has generally left Hunters at the whims of tuning—brought when our damage is uncontestably at the top and benched when it’s not. I believe that the above suggestion would solve this problem.

First, Sentinel Owl, which I think is a creative and interesting talent, does not solve this problem, because as Nimox acknowledged, it is going to be a very niche ability in PvE situations.

Note: just because it doesn’t solve this problem doesn’t mean it should be taken out—I’m really looking forward to having it in DF. I think it’ll have several situations where it shines, whether in clear cut moments where the whole raid has to stay out of line of sight for a mechanic, or in more creative moments where the ranged camp can optionally stay out of line of sight and we can give them a few seconds of free casting. The flip side—5% Leech and 3% Avoidance—is just not enough, and I hope the rework Nimox has alluded to adds a lot more utility to it.

That said, Hunters need much more widely applicable utility to compete with other classes. This is the gap that my suggestion aims to fill: widely applicable utility, a choice of Rally, Stampeding Roar, or a raid-wide Vampiric Embrace-type effect.

Note: while Stampeding Roar fits the pattern, it would be much more interesting if Cunning pets granted some form of raid-wide Aspect of the Eagle for Survival Hunters or Aspect of the Fox for Beast Mastery/Marksmanship.

Final note: For Marksmanship Hunters, who will almost certainly be using Lone Wolf, and already don’t enjoy calling a pet already to use lust, I suggest that they get each ability on a shared cooldown, so they can choose which one to use without summoning a pet.


Multi-Point Nodes

Issue:

There are several talent nodes that have two or three points required to move through them where it would be nice to be able to just put one point in if we want the effect, and then have the option to invest further points if we want to enhance that effect.

Proposal:

Make these nodes into leaves that you can fill in, instead of talent nodes you have to pass through.

Examples and Explanation:

Viper’s Venom: Raptor Strike and Mongoose Bite have a 15/30% chance to apply Serpent Sting to your target.

Note: Viper’s Venom completely gates Wildfire Infusion.

In single target situations, 15% is more than enough to keep Serpent Sting up permanently—30% is overkill and a waste of a point. However, in aoe situations, 30% might be better, because you’ll be cycling through targets and wanting to get Serpent Sting up on new targets as soon as possible. I don’t know if this is going to be the correct playstyle, or if actual Serpent Sting spreading is going to be correct, but if Viper’s Venom is going to stay a two-point node: please position it in such a way that we don’t have to put both points in.

Trailblazer and Posthaste: Your movement speed is increased by 15/30% anytime you have not attacked for 3 seconds; Disengage also frees you from all movement impairing effects and increases your movement speed by 25% for 2/4 seconds.

Note: these two talents completely gate Counter Shot/Muzzle.

It would be great if the option existed to put just one point in each. These should also be leaf nodes.

I think as a general design philosophy, it would give players a feeling of meaningful choice if double or triple point nodes that granted an effect with the first point and made that effect more powerful with subsequent points, were placed in such a way that they did not completely gate other talents.


Specific Talent Feedback

First I want to say that Asthelon’s post (https://us.forums.blizzard.com/en/wow/en/wow/t/feedback-hunters/1279513/172) on the Alpha feedback thread addresses 99% of the remaining talent issues that Survival has in the class and spec trees. I just want to point out one or two additional talents that I think can be tweaked and make a few suggestions.

Double % Damage Increase Nodes: (Improved Wildfire Bomb/Tactical Advantage & Spear Focus/Sweeping Spear)

Just as a starting point, these choices—while not completely redundant—still feel redundant, and I think there are just more interesting design options that can be added.

For Tactical Advantage, I think something along the lines of: “Flanking Strike grants one/two stacks of Tip of the Spear (extra stacks may exceed 3)” would make Flanking Strike feel more interactive.

For Spear Focus, I think that there should be a talent that interacts with the Mongoose Fury window or with Mongoose Fury stacks in some way. Something like “Kill Command Resets grant a stack of Mongoose Fury (stacks granted in this way may exceed 5)”. This might ultimately be too powerful, but I think it’s a start. If it’s too powerful, perhaps add something like “excess stacks of Mongoose Fury are consumed by the next Mongoose Bite” similar to Tip of the Spear.


Nesingwary’s Trapping Apparatus:

The chorus of voices in forum threads and on the Hunter Discord seems to me to be overwhelmingly against this talent and playstyle. While we do not need more active buttons, it would be nice if there was some throughput option here that didn’t involve trapping as part of the damage rotation, for a few reasons:

  1. As mentioned, most of the feedback seems to be against the playstyle
  2. Marksmanship is essentially forced into it, since they ignore the pet talents
  3. Having this talent tied to Freezing Trap (or other traps, whose primary purpose is utility) seems to be against a design philosophy that Nimox just said: “Keeping utility as utility, and not utility as damage, allows it to be a useful tool when the situation calls for it, rather than something you feel compelled to stack with other effects, or use on cooldown.” I think this is a fantastic philosophy and should be followed as much as possible.

Explosives Expert:

Now that Deadly Duo/Quick Shot has been reworked, the CDR on Wildfire Bomb from Kill Shot seems like it’s not going to be very meaningful at all – we already get so much CDR in execute range from Fury of the Eagle, which means Explosives Expert will only be effective during Coordinated Assault. This seems like it would be too inconsistent to warrant talent points so far down the tree. Perhaps if Birds of Prey gets reworked into something related to Kill Shot? I’m not sure what makes the most sense here, but I hope this talent is still on the list of things the team wants to iterate on.


Conclusion

The above are just my thoughts on the biggest issue areas of the class and spec tree. I’d love to hear if anyone has feedback, my hope is to hone the concepts here into something that can be picked up by Nimox and easily implemented by the team.

2 Likes

Aspect of the fox was the best raid CD hunter had in the past, super wish that could come back. Agree that raid utility is lackluster so far.

Regarding nesingwary’s, who is pushing this ability on the talent tree? It would suck to use traps for dps. They lose utility value when you need to use them for dps since you no longer have them for their main purpose.

Also, placing ground targeted effects is not fun in combat. There were too many already in shadowlands and caused so many instances of them getting stuck on the ceiling textures

2 Likes

Nesings needs to be removed. It’s a toxic trait and will make any play really annoying,
Killing blow needs to be moved away from blocking hunter’s knowledge. Sharpshooter needs to be moved into the middle instead of on the aoe side. Or another route to get it. I hope we get some type of feedback soon on these issues cause as it stands now these are what I believe are the biggest issues in the mm tree.

P.s I’ll live with summoning a pet to lust if these are fixed

2 Likes

As an aside it looks like in the next talent update that Master Marksman will work for melee abilities as well- good change, huzzah!

Has anyone been able to test out the ranger talent in survival to see if a ranged weapon is needed for steady shot?

My guess is you would need to equip a ranged weapon for steady.

1 Like

Coherent class identity is having a talent with “Marksman” in the name work for melee abilities.

1 Like

I am going to be honest as long as it works for melee I am happy. (Close ranged Marksman lol) Keep the name, rename whatever, I am just glad they allowed it to affect melee.

Agreed completely. I was honestly glad to see that the Shadowlands covenant ability making the jump was not Resonating Arrow or Wild Spirits. It’s been fun for a time, but that time is wearing on me—tanks constantly dragging mobs out of our ground effects, abilities ending up on the ceiling, etc etc.

Traps are for utility, and should stay that way. We don’t need to tie them to damage outside of Steel Trap, and even then, Steel Trap isn’t exactly a very exciting ability.

As for more utility, I’d love to see Aspect of the Fox back in—and perhaps a raidwide Aspect of the Eagle for Survival. I think the past problems of just chaining Aspect of the Fox is pretty easily solved by a Sated-type debuff.