Hunter 101: Gear and stats

Long story short, if it’s an item in the game, it’s for a Hunter

I almost didn’t even write this post since all loot in the game is Hunter loot™. But since the other support classes might find that unfair [for whatever reason], I thought I would go ahead and write up a guide on what to look for, should you want to be a kind and benevolent Hunter and give lesser gear to the support classes.


“Hunter weapon… Hunter weapon…. oh! This was made for a Hunter.” — ancient Hunter proverb

In all seriousness, though, we Hunters are pretty lucky when it comes to gear. A lot of the gear in the game works for us and it’s relatively easy to find really good gear at low levels.

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Hunter 101: Races

When rolling a hunter, your first choice to make is which race to choose? First you need to decide what your priorities are. Do you want to raid? PvP? Mostly just quest and do solo content?

Unless you are looking to really min/max your DPS, you can be successful with any race, but there are a couple of races for each faction that make the most sense for a hunter.

This guide lists the races in order of best to worst as far as racials go.

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Hunter 101: Which pet should I get? (WOD)

One of the most frequently asked questions from new hunters is:

What is the best pet for the DPS?

You see, my little hunters, there is no one “right” answer for this. There are many pets in our hunter arsenal that are the best pet for the situation. The best pet for your DPS is dependent upon what you’re doing. I wouldn’t use the same pet for raiding that I would use in a battleground. My arena pet might be different from my battleground pet. The pet I use for questing isn’t the same as the pet I use to run 5 man dungeons, and I certainly do not use that pet when I hunter tank or do some extreme soloing.

Hunter pets are one of the biggest utilities we have to offer and the sign of a truly good hunter is one who knows which pet to use in what situation and why. Blizzard blessed us with an overflowing stable in Cataclysm… we have FIFTY pet slots now! This is a fantastic opportunity, use those slots well.

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Hunter 101: Which pet should I get? (MoP)

 THIS INFORMATION IS DEPRECATED, PLEASE SEE THIS POST FOR UPDATED WARLORDS OF DRAENOR INFORMATION

One of the most frequently asked questions from new hunters is:

What is the best pet for the DPS?

You see, my little hunters, there is no one “right” answer for this. There are many pets in our hunter arsenal that are the best pet for the situation. The best pet for your DPS is dependent upon what you’re doing. I wouldn’t use the same pet for raiding that I would use in a battleground. My arena pet might be different from my battleground pet. The pet I use for questing isn’t the same as the pet I use to run 5 man dungeons, and I certainly do not use that pet when I hunter tank or do some extreme soloing. Hunter pets are one of the biggest utilities we have to offer and the sign of a truly good hunter is one who knows which pet to use in what situation and why. Blizzard has blessed us with an overflowing stable in Cataclysm… we have TWENTY FIVE pet slots now! This is a fantastic opportunity, use those slots well.

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5.0.4 Hunter PvP: Because Sometimes, You Can’t Just RAF a Warlock With a Friend

Guest post by Dargonslayer, rabid PvP enthusiast. Dargonslayer is a Marksman (now Beast Mastery) hunter who specializes in the murder of Alliance scum in WPVP. She has an off spec of OPPAN GANGNAM STYLE for PVE when she feels the need to make herself cry or that things are a little too happy in her life. She mains a dapper Forsaken gentleman by the name of Strelok on Emerald Dream US. She is an extremely kawaii GIRL GAMERRRRR DON’T HIT ON ME SILLY BOYS.


So as you should know, Patch 5.0.4 hit live realms Tuesday morning. And by Tuesday morning, I of course mean Tuesday afternoon. And by that, I of course mean a little closer to “early evening.” I think we can all take solace in the fact that while World of Warcraft handles its classes like a game of Hungry Hungry Hippo in which the class that eats the most of Ghostcrawler’s attention orbs gets all the buffs and the losing classes are all nerfed into “Cataclysm Holy Priest PvP” status, Blizzard Time remains the same.

Anyways! The new patch brings one or two minor changes to everyone; those minor changes being less minor and more “dear God NOTHING IS AS IT SEEMS ANYMORE.”

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5.0.4 Hunter Guide

The pre-MOP patch is dropping tomorrow and a LOT of things are changing. It isn’t as big of a change as it was from Wrath to Cata, so you’re not literally re-learning how to play your class from the ground up, but there are some pretty substantial changes that will take some getting used to, especially if you haven’t been tooling around on the beta. Thinking back to how big of a change 4.0 was, this new 5.0 patch should be a cake walk in comparison. When you think about it, we don’t really have THAT much that’s changing… but the stuff that did change will be changing in a pretty big way.

What to do before you log in:

Update your computer’s operating system and run a software update. Your game will be more stable if your system is up to date.

Turn off all your addons until you know they are for sure going to work. Some addons cause fatal errors with the game, Recount is often a culprit for this. If your game is broken, turn off Recount. It’s always Recount. Addons to update first: Deadly Boss Mods, Serenity JS Hunter Bar.

Alright. You’re logged on. The game isn’t crashing. GREAT. What’s next?

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Update: New Heroic Dragon Soul Videos!

I have just added Hunter POV videos for every fight to my Hunting Heroic Dragon Soul guide! These videos should help clarify any questions regarding fight mechanics or positioning and give you a good idea of what your role in the fight will be if you’re new to the fight as a hunter. Enjoy!

To directly view the videos on my YouTube, you can jump directly to the playlist here: Dragon Soul Playlist

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Hunting Heroic Dragon Soul

The expansion is rapidly coming to a close and Tier 13 is ending. With the 20% nerf coming out, even more people will be progressing through Dragon Soul. Hunters were all over the place this tier. We started out okay then quickly got nerfed into the ground. They finally fixed us a couple patches in to 4.3 and with good gear and great knowledge of the fights, we are able to go head to head with some of the classes who spend a bit too much time sitting at the top of the meters.

This guide assumes you already have previous knowledge of the fights and focuses mainly on hunter-specific mechanics and tricks you need to know to maximize your effectiveness in the encounters. I have also included videos of the fights from a hunter POV so you can get an idea of what your role in the fight will look like. (Language in videos may be considered NSFW, you have been warned!)

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MM Hunter specs for all situations

General PvE builds

Generic questing/leveling build (9/31/1) — This is a fairly standard MM build with points placed in Spirit Bond and Hunter vs. Wild for survivability purposes while maintaining personal DPS talents like Trueshot Aura.

5-man dungeon/10-man raid build (7/31/3) — This build focuses less on surviving on your own and more on damage output. It also assumes you’ll be needing to provide yourself and your group with the 10% attack power buff… if your 10-man group has two Paladins or a Pally and a Druid, you can check out the 25-man build.

25-man raid build (7/31/3) — This build is very similar to the small group build, but it assumes you no longer need to provide the attack power buff and grabs the second point in Marked for Death. Some people argue MFD is useless, I find it to be a great talent… especially when target switching a lot, that’s one less global you have to waste. It also moves the points from Termination into Concussive Barrage. This change is based on personal preference, I find that I’m more likely to be focus-capped in a 25-man due to having all raid buffs. If you feel focus-starved in the last portion of a fight, keep those points in Termination!

Encounter-Specific AOE PvE builds

The “Beth’tilac Adds” build (3/31/7) — This build focuses on AOE and controlling a group of adds by yourself. Taking points in Rapid Killing, Rapid Recouperation, Concussive Barrage and Entrapment are the main reasons why this spec is so strong… you essentially have infinite focus to spam Multi-Shot once those adds start to die. You will not be topping charts with this build, but when your job on this fight is controlling the adds, your DPS does not matter so long as those spiderlings never reach the drones.

For fights like Cho’gall where you need maximum AOE but will probably not be alone in handling the adds, this slightly modified (7/31/3) AOE spec will work better since your DPS on the boss WILL matter.

On a fight like Heroic Rhyolith where you want maximum AOE but you DO NOT want to slow the adds, go for this spec.

PvP builds

Standard PvP build (1/31/9) — This build maximizes survival while not completely gimping damage output. Points in Survival Tactics and Entrapment maximize utility and keeping one point in One With Nature gives you a boost on your damage when you are able to stay in Aspect of the Hawk and turret in to something. Good for arenas and battlegrounds.

Alternate PvP build (3/31/7) — This build provides a little more damage and is good for offensive assaults in BGs and screwing over a flag runner.

Hunter Tank build

EXTREEEEM build (8/31/2) — Maximum survivability and healing while still putting out solid DPS. Best when used with 2pc T5 for the 15% healing bonus to your pet!

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