Survival Hunter 9.1

Ok, I’ve seen a million topics on survival hunter, discussing changes and reversions, etc. So I decided to write down what I thought to be the most sensible changes going into 9.1, that also wouldn’t necessitate an entire rework of the spec.

  1. Focus Regen is absolutely horrible, which is why I believe that either it should get a baseline buff, or Flanking Strike should be made baseline for an additional focus generator tool.
  2. Survival Hunter’s damage is meant to be consistent, with no burst, unlike any other spec in the game, which features some burst windows, I think Coordinated assault should have a secondary stat buff as well to make the cooldown burstier, preferably a 15-20% haste increase for the duration.
  3. Serpent Sting needs to last AT LEAST as long as the Mongoose Fury buff, so 2 seconds longer.
  4. For a spec called survival, there isn’t many survival cooldowns, aside from turtle and tenacity pets, which all hunters have access to, we have no true DRs. I think a cooldown playing off of our mastery, Spirit Bond would be good, where it either buffs the regen rate for 10 seconds, or shunts 30-50% of dmg taken to our pet for 10 seconds.
  5. Survival’s talent tree is unfair, as there are two choices at higher gear levels, that are basically locked in, Guerrilla Tactics, and Mongoose Bite. Mongoose Bite being baseline once again would be preferable, and Wildfire Bomb should deal the 100% increased dmg baseline. The two charges aren’t very viable in a birds of prey build and as such should remain talent-tied.
  6. One way to increase Survival’s single target damage, where it noticeably lags far behind others, is to have Raptor/Mongoose Bite, decrease Bomb cd by 1 second. At high haste levels this means a bomb roughly every 5 seconds in single target, which is a significant improvement over one every 12. This may have negative interactions with one of their legendaries, but this is intended more for Mythic+ tyrannical weeks.
  7. Wildfire Infusion is in my opinion one of the most interactive talents in the game, it requires actual thought to plan out what you’ll be doing with each bomb, which is why I wish it rewarded you a little more. Volatile bomb is awesome to use in AOE when everything is serpent stinged, and Pheromone bomb is a great help for focus regen, especially during a mongoose fury window, but Shrapnel bomb’s bleed is rather underwhelming, aside from the synergy with Bloodseeker, its negligible damage on a short duration DoT which does less damage per tick at three stacks than serpent sting, this should be buffed to actually reward a player for managing to get 3 bites/strikes off in such a short window.
  8. Something I’ve noticed while playing WoW is that almost every spec in the game has some kind of RNG-based proc that either helps their rotation along, or smooths out the class. (Frost mages, have Ice Lance procs, Enh shammies have Stormbringer procs…etc.) Survival lacks this, you can talent into the Serpent Sting proc talent, Viper’s Venom. But it feels rather bad to use when your refreshing your serpent sting early. I think there should be a proc that buffs Carve/Raptor/Mongoose, the proc should change based on the ability you press, for Carve it deals 50% increased dmg and reduces bomb CD by an additional second, for Raptor Strike/Mongoose Bite it deals 30% increased dmg and also extends Serpent Sting by 6 seconds.

That’s all I got for now, thoughts?


I think raptor strike baseline, regardless of tos/mb talents needs to be buffed.

Outside of that anything else would just be an added plus. We need single target and that would fix it.

Focus regen will be better as we increase haste so fixing it would break it later. That would need a rework altogether.

Edit: also agree coordinated assault is incredibly weak. If it stays the same, the CD needs to be lowered to at least 1min30 sec.


And the early results are in. 9.1 patch notes and Blizzard give Surv Hunter…

Hold on I must have just overlooked it…

Oh here it is:

JACK ****!!! CONGRATS GUYS. I admit I doubted we could get more abused but… TADA!!!

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Most of the classes got nothing. My guess they will be doing classes in groups

Though even then wr will get nothing :slight_smile:

I couldn’t help but notice that a number of the SV legendaries are just Azerite traits, but I guess it’s because they didn’t know what to do - Legion’s SV Legendaries were designed for an unfinished spec that no longer exists (if you didn’t play SV in Legion, it was broken as hell; like Demonology, it wasn’t an actual spec until BfA).

Though, tbh, as fun as SV is, it may be time to just make it some kind of ranged class. Maybe a shorter ranged class where you need to be within 20 yards to autoattack or something, but melee isn’t working out. Seems like everytime I level up my Hunter, some new bow item is released that heavily incentivizes BM or MM over SV, and the same is happening in 9.1.

Which is a shame, because I’m otherwise pretty happy with the spec aside from it’s damage and haste issues (that Azerite trait that reduces Wildfire Bomb’s CD by 1 second per Raptor Strike should just be baseline, not a wacky legendary). But at this point I’ll happily take a ranged version if I can get to keep the rotation somehow.

I agree with you on most other points, but 100% disagree here. I hate Mongoose Bite with a passion. It’s such a clunky mechanic and the one thing I hate about the spec.
It’s a “drop everything and spam this one button” ability that has always felt super out of place with the rest of the spec.


I have kind of an opposite opinion. If you set yourself up to be a mongoose spammer it can feel really good to play. Kind of like you cat set-up to be a bomb lobber or SS pinger, which feel very different to each other . Plus it’s a great way to bump our ST, without gutting everything else, to make it more ‘viable’. As haste and focus regen increase our ability to stack 5 and spam on it longer will also increase.

I am definitely in favor of Baseline Bite! Note: I do not want it to replace Raptor!

I absolutely hate Mongoose Bite.

I hated it in Legion when it was an unfinished spec.
Halfway into BfA, after avoiding the talent for the first half of the expansion, I gave it another shot for a month with an open mind (after all, the spec fundamentally changed, it’s probably better now, right?)… and I hated it again.

I despise the ability. I would be fine with pruning it.

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But why does it need to be pruned? You and others don’t like it. Myself and others do. Why can’t we just make it baseline and you don’t have to use it if you don’t want to? That also opens up another skill tree slot and that benefits everyone.

Because if it’s baseline you either will have to use it or it’s not worth using ever.

Edit: Talent choice is probably the best place for it, so long as they balance it to not be the best choice.


The only good thing about mongoose bite is the 5 different animations it has for each hit.

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In the middle with Mongoose. It works, and truthfully, its about getting it to five to maximize its damage. It can be…interesting at times. Baseline would not bother me, would need a talent to go with it, perhaps higher in the tree.

MSV will still be garbage in 9.1. They didn’t change it with the xpac, and it’s not going to change with a patch.

I guess I get that. I mean, I don’t have any major problems with it’s current implementation. I was just thinking about the xtra talent slot that has the potential benefit everyone. As well as the idea of having access to both mongoose and raptor. Maybe make Raptor harder hitting with a cd and mongoose as is? That puts Raptor more in line with the TotS builds anyways. And allows us to spam mongoose for more ST damage. But, again, that pigeon-holes everyone into using it.

Oh, well. I just hope it doesn’t get the boot. I have always enjoyed having it around.

Wait, why? Haste increases the rate at which you spend Focus just as much as it increases the rate at which is generated.*

*Technically, it increases the rate of Focus spending more quickly than the rate of Focus generation as your filler skills cost more than your time-limited (DoTs and cooldowns) and neither your DoT durations nor certain cooldowns scale with Haste, meaning that your portion of filler casts increase.

You’re correct, it lowers and gcd and if you are spamming a focus spender then it essentially erases the gain of having faster regeneration.

Having said that, all of our abilities are not focus spenders. That time not spent using the focus spenders still benefits from the increased focus regen.

I won’t nerd into it further, but the proof is the entirety of BFA. We did have a higher focus cap due to an azerite trait but that wouldn’t matter in this case.

In fact, the regen felt so much better you could run mongoose bite without alpha predator because you simply didn’t need the extra kill command for focus generation. Vipers venom was also very strong and resulted in free serpent stings so that helped.

I’m imagining some of the reasons for the lack of survival changes early this expansion is due to how it will scale later as it likely will be similar (but not the same) as bfa minus the corruption and Azerite traits.


This isn’t BFA and Tip of The Spear and Mongoose bite and fairly Equal in terms or damage with Tip being stronger in aoe situations and less demanding in hectic add cleave. Mongoose bite should be superior in static ST but this does not occur that often.


I’m not a huge fan of MSV, so take this with a relative grain of salt. This is coming from the perspective of the things that prevent me from really enjoying MSV.

So, all 3 hunter specs are largely based around having a fairly significant active component to focus regen. I think the issue is more just that Kill Command doesn’t regenerate enough focus for its cooldown. Reducing the cooldown could work, but that would lessen the impact of resets and thereby lessen the impact of things like Pheromone Bomb.

I think they could help alleviate this by both increasing the direct regen from Kill Command, and baking in at least the charge portion of Alpha Predator baseline, maybe with 3 charges instead of 2. That would let Kill Command (or Flanking Strike, I wouldn’t mind FS (without the leap) replacing KC just to avoid the crossover with BM) have a similar rotational role to how Rockbiter worked for Enhancement last expansion (after Boulderfist was rolled in) or how Fracture works for VDH. Charge-based generators are very good, imo, from a rotational perspective, as they encourage “weaving”.

I’m not sure that’s true anymore. It certainly was back in the days of RSV, but MSV since conception seems to have been based on big pay-off Mongoose Bite windows. Ya, Mongoose Bite became a talent in BfA, but the spec still feels to be based around that type of pool-and-burst concept. At least to me.

Coordinated Assault does feel a bit lackluster to me, though. Not quite Aspect of the Wild lackluster, but certainly well below cooldowns like Trueshot, or Combustion, or Celestial Alignment, or Avenging Wrath. 20% damage gain is such a pitiful amount, tbh.

So, this actually strikes towards the core of my major beef with MSV circa BfA and after. I actually massively preferred the charge-based Mongoose Bite concept over the spammable-consumer version. With the current style, using focus on anything that isn’t Mongoose Bite feels like such a waste, like using a frost spell or a hardcast during Combustion.

With the charge system, you naturally had downtime even during Mongoose Fury windows, and Mongoose Bite itself didn’t consume focus, so casting other stuff didn’t feel as bad. In addition, you had natural downtime between Mongoose Fury windows as you recharged the charges, where right now, you kinda want to go from one to the other as rapidly as possible, so spending focus even outside Mongoose Fury feels bad for delaying it.

I also rather enjoyed having Fury of the Eagle to “capstone” a Mongoose Fury burst.

Being that MSV’s design basically leaves haste the most desirable stat until the end of time, adding a haste buff to CA would probably feel great.

Also yeah mongoose play in legion and bfa were so completely different. The iteration now is terrible and honestly I’d rather not go back to it.


I could see that. Make it have a similar feel to Adrenaline Rush in that regard, not just amping your damage but making it all flow faster as well. That’s one of my favorite things about Adrenaline Rush, actually, the GCD reduction.

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