4.0.1: A Hunter Guide

So, 4.0.1 is here! I’ve had a lot of hunters approach me and say “Blik, what happened?! My mana’s focus and now my talent trees shrunk! AHHHH!” Not to worry everyone, I’m here to help you get everything all straightened out.

For everyone who is just visiting this site for the first time, my name is Bliky and I play on Shadow Council-US. This guide is mostly centered around PvE since I don’t plan on doing any real PvP with my hunter until I either have access to Aspect of the Fox or get to level 85. With my guild, I am currently 11/12 Hardmode ICC25. So, Like i said, this guide is strictly from a PvE Point of view.

Table of Contents:

  • Focus
  • Spells
  • Talents
  • Pet Abilities
  • Stable
  • Glyphs
  • Stats
  • Reforging

So, lets get right into it, shall we?

Focus

So, the first thing you might notice when logging into your hunter is your mana is gone! It has now been replaced with our new resource similar to our pets resource called Focus. The best way I can describe focus is that, simply, it is like energy except for the fact that it has a much slower regeneration rate. Due to that face, we get an ability (Or in this case, a new feature tacked onto a current ability) that helps us regenerate focus quicker. Haste is another tool we have to help our focus regenerate faster (Ill cover more on this in the Stats section). Most of our main damage dealing abilities cost focus, where as most of our utility abilities (Traps, Disengage, etc) don’t cost focus.

One of the main ways we have to regenerate our focus is through the use of Steady/Cobra Shot. Every time we cast a Steady/Cobra Shot we regenerate 9 focus off the bat.

To be quite honest, focus can take either 5 minutes to get used to or a couple of hours. Not everyone can grasp such a new concept so quickly. If you don’t fully graps/like the concept of focus withing the first 10 minutes on the dummy DON’T give up. Keep at it. It can take a while to learn. Do a few randoms to get the grasp of it in a more group/raid setting as well.

Spells

Since the release of 4.0.1 a lot of hunter spells have changed. If nothing else, some spells changed to simply reflect the change from mana to focus. Here, tree by tree, I’m going to run through each ability that changed and explain the changes.

New Spells

Call Pet – Call pet has gone through a nice, big change from where it was previously. It now takes very good use of the Pull Out Menu blizzard has implemented. Along with Call Pet, you now have spells called Call Pet 1-5. Due to the new stable changes, Call Pet 1-5 will be able to summon whatever pet you have in the “Active” pet slot with the respected number (This will be better explained in the Stable section). The nifty part about Call Pet 1-5 is the Icon changes with what pet you have in that slot a long with the tooltip name. Currently I only have Call Pet 1-4 because Call Pet 5 is trained at level 82.

Example of the Pull Out Menu and Call Pet 1

Widow Venom – Since Aimed Shot got changed (See Spells>Marksmanship) it had the Mortal Strike healing debuff effect removed from it. Instead, it became it’s own spell. Widow Venom applies a debuff to the target reducing their healing taken by 25% for 30 seconds. Costs 15 focus.

Aspect of the Fox (Available at Level 83) – Aspect of the Viper is gone since we no longer have mana and it is replaced with Aspect of the Fox. Aspect of the Fox allows you to cast Steady and Cobra Shot while you are moving (More on this later in this section) and gives you 2 focus back whenever you are hit by a melee attack.

Trap Launcher – Trap Launcher works just like the old Freezing Arrow did except it now works for ALL traps! Trap Launcher has a 15 second window that you can launch a trap and costs 20 focus.

Cobra Shot (Available at Level 81) – Cobra Shot is very similar to Steady Shot except dealing Physical Damage it now does Nature Damage. Just like Steady Shot it also regenerates 9 focus. The difference is that when you cast a Cobra Shot it will increase the duration on your Serpent Sting (Assuming it’s applied to the target) by 6 seconds per Cobra Shot cast. Cobra Shot has a base 2 second cast time and costs no focus.

Camouflage (Available at Level 85) – Camouflage is our new level 85 ability. When activated it puts the hunter and his pet in a semi-stealth state. This state causes us to be untargetable by ranged attacks, reduces the chance that enemy’s can detect you and providing a more full on stealth when standing still. While under the affects of Camouflage you can lay any trap BUT any damage you or your pet causes will break the effect. It cannot be cast in combat, costs no focus and lasts 1 minute.

Beast Mastery

Kill Command – Kill Command has gone through a big change from where it was to now. Currently it works like a regular damage dealing ability but it causes your pet to do a certain amount of damage to its current target. To use Kill Command your pet needs to be in combat and within 5 yards of the target.

Mend Pet – Instead of a certain amount like it used to be Mend Pet now heals for 25% of the pets total health over 10 seconds. 45 Yard Range.

Marksmanship

Aimed Shot – Aimed Shot has, more of less, been reverted to the way it was pre-WotLK. It now has a base 3 second cast time. It’s damage has been lowered from the last patch and it costs 50 focus with a 2.5 second cooldown.

Arcane Shot – Arcane Shot is now our spam ability. Currently it has no cooldown and hits for quite a bit more than it did before. It costs 25 focus and does damage as Arcane Damage.

Multi-Shot – Multi-Shot now has no cooldown, costs 40 focus and can hit an unlimited number of targets that are within 8 yards of the main target.

Survival

Misdirection – Misdirection has stayed mostly the same except for one part. Currently, after 30 seconds the threat that was transferred from you to the target wears off.

Minor Spell Changes

Dismiss Pet had it’s cast time reduced to 2 seconds. Master’s Call has a new icon. Kill Shot now does less damage but is on a 10 second cooldown. Steady Shot now generates 9 focus when cast. Ice Trap is just the old Frost Trap renamed. Scatter Shot is now baseline. Serpent Sting can crit baseline now and the ticks are affected by our haste. Volley was removed. Call Stable Pet is now gone.

 

Talents

As you may or may not know the talent trees got slimmed down in a big way. If you’re logging into your hunter for the first time since the patch you will see a box telling you that your talents have been reset. If you open your talent trees you’ll be greeted with a window that looks like this:

Unspec'd talent tree panel

Confusing, I know, but let me explain a few things first.

First thing you should do is pick a talent tree, once you pick one and put at least one point into it you cannot put any points into another tree until you’ve put 31 points into the original tree. The days of hybrid specing are gone. You’ve probably already noticed that on each panel in the screen shot above there is listed a spec-relevant ability, and two things below it. One is a spec bonus and the other is the spec mastery. Each spec gives something different listed below:

Beast Mastery

Intimidation -Intimidation is the pet stun that lasts for 3 seconds and causes some threat.

Animal Handler – Increases Attack Power by 15%

Mastery: Master of Beasts – Increases the damage done by your pets by a baseline of 13.6%. Each point of mastery (Explained in the stats section) increases the pets damage by 1.7%

Marksmanship

Aimed Shot – See “Spells” section.

Artisan Quiver – Increases ranged auto-attack damage by 15%.

Mastery: Wild Quiver – Gives you a 14.4% chance for a ranged attack to instantly fire a second ranged attack at 100% damage. Each point of mastery (Explained in the stats section) increases the chance of an additional shot by 1.8%

Survival

Explosive Shot -A shot that fires an explosive charge into the enemy dealing damage and blasting the target every second for an additional 2 seconds. 6 second cooldown and costs 50 focus.

Into the Wilderness – Increases agility by 15%

Mastery: Essence of the Viper – Increases all elemental damage by a baseline of 8%. Each point of mastery (Explained in the stats section) increases the elemental damage done by 1.0%

 

This guide, of course, assumes you have some basic knowledge of the hunter class so I shouldn’t have to go through and explain what every single talent in every tree does. I do, however, want to go through and explain the rotations for each spec. (All of the rotations are compliments of Midnight from the Elitist Jerks forum topic here.)

Reference:

  • HM = Hunter’s Mark
  • MfD = Marked for Death
  • KS = Kill Shot
  • KC = Kill Command
  • SpS = Serpent Sting
  • AS = Arcane Shot
  • CoS = Cobra Shot
  • SS = Steady Shot
  • AimS = Aimed Shot
  • CS = Chimera Shot
  • BA = Black Arrow
  • ES = Explosive Shot
  • MMM = Master Marksman
  • LnL = Lock and Load

Beast Mastery

Rotation:

if HM is not on target or running out in less than a set time and there´s no MfD on target and focus/cooldowns/target heath don´t allow for KS or KC
–> cast HM
if KS is off CD and target health is at or below 20%
–> cast KS
if KC is off CD and enough focus
–> cast KC
if SpS is not on target and enough focus
–> cast SpS
if focus over or at 75 (modified by Efficiency)
–> cast AS
none of the above
–> cast CoS/SS

Marksmanship

Rotation:

if HM is not on target or running out in less than a set time and there´s no MfD on target and MfD is not talented and focus/cooldowns/target heath don´t allow for KS or CS
–> cast HM
if KS is off CD and target health is at or below 20%
–> cast KS
if CS is off CD and enough focus
–> cast CS
if MMM buff is up
–> cast AimS
if SpS is not on target and enough focus
–> cast SpS
if SS won´t overcap focus and last spell has been SS and the spell before last spell has not been SS
–> cast SS
if enough focus to cast AS now and still enough to cast CS whenever it comes off CD
–> cast AS
none of the above
–> cast SS

Survival

Rotation:

if HM is not on target or running out in less than a set time and there´s no MfD on target and focus/cooldowns/target heath don´t allow for KS, ES or BA
–> cast HM
if KS is off CD and target health is at or below 20%
–> cast KS
if ES is off CD and either enough focus or LnL charges left and last ES cast is 2 or more seconds ago
–> cast ES
if BA is off CD and enough focus
–> cast BA
if SpS is not on target and enough focus
–> cast SpS
if focus over or at 75 (modified by Efficiency) and there´s no LnL buff
–> cast AS
if KC is off CD and enough focus and LnL buff up
–> cast KC
none of the above
–> cast CoS

Pet Abilities

Blizzard changes what kinds of things our pets bring. Now, every pet brings some type of raid buff. Sometimes as a full strength buff, sometimes as a lesser version of the buff. Malazee over at Petopia put together an awesome flow chart that shows exactly what pet family brings what buff.

Malazee's Handy Pet Flowchart

Stable

Because of the way the new Call Pet (Explained above) works Blizzard decided to remove the old Call Stable Pet spell and change the way the actual Stable Master NPC’s work. As I mentioned above you can see in the screenshot below that on the left is the list of Active pet’s. This are the ones that I can call from anywhere with Call Pet 1-5. The right is the other pets who are currently in storage. Blizzard was nice enough to give us 20 slots for storage and 5 for active pets so we can have a total of 25 tamed pets.

New Stable

Glyphs

The glyph system Blizzard intoduces in WotLK has changes in patch 4.0.1. They added a 3rd type of glyph called Prime glyphs. You can now have 3 Prime, Major and Minor glyphs. The prior Minor glyphs for hunter have not changed. To me it looks like Prime glyphs are mostly for stat changes. More crit on this, more damage on that. That type of thing. Major glyphs are now for more utility. Changing abilities, reducing cool downs, that sort of thing.

Blizzard had a blue post a while back that had all the glyphs in a nice little list and here it is!:

Prime

  • Aimed Shot – When you critically hit with Aimed Shot, you instantly gain 5 Focus.
  • Arcane Shot – Your Arcane Shot deals 12% more damage.
  • Chimera Shot – Reduces the cooldown of Chimera Shot by 1 sec.
  • Dazzled Prey – Your Steady Shot generates an additional 2 Focus on targets afflicted by a daze effect.
  • Explosive Shot – Increases the critical strike chance of Explosive Shot by 6%.
  • Kill Command – Reduces the Focus cost of your Kill Command by 3.
  • Kill Shot – If your Kill Shot fails to kill the target on a target at or below 25% health, your Kill Shot’s cooldown is instantly reset. This effect has a 6 sec cooldown.
  • Rapid Fire – Increases the haste from Rapid Fire by an additional 10%.
  • Serpent Sting – Increases the periodic critical strike chance of your Serpent Sting by 6%.
  • Steady Shot – Increases the damage dealt by Steady Shot by 10% when your target is afflicted with Serpent Sting.

Major

  • Bestial Wrath – Decreases the cooldown of Bestial Wrath by 20 sec.
  • Concussive Shot – Increases the duration of your Concussive Shot by 2 sec.
  • Deterrence – Decreases the cooldown of Deterrence by 10 sec.
  • Disengage – Decreases the cooldown of Disengage by 5 sec.
  • Freezing Trap – When your Freezing Trap breaks, the victim’s movement speed is reduced by 70% for 4 sec.
  • Ice Trap – Increases the radius of the effect from your Ice Trap by 2 yards.
  • Immolation Trap – Decreases the duration of the effect from your Immolation Trap by 6 sec., but damage while active is increased by 100%.
  • Master’s Call – Increases the duration of your Master’s Call by 4 sec.
  • Mending – Increases the healing done by your Mend Pet ability by 40%.
  • Misdirection – When you use Misdirection to your pet, the cooldown on your Misdirection is reset.
  • Raptor Strike – Reduces damage taken by 20% for 5 sec after using Raptor Strike.
  • Scatter Shot – Increases the range of Scatter Shot by 3 yards.
  • Silencing Shot – When you successfully silence an enemy’s spell cast with Silencing Shot, you instantly gain 10 focus.
  • Snake Trap – Snakes from your Snake Trap take 90% reduced damage from area of effect spells.
  • Trap Launcher – Reduces the focus cost of Trap Launcher by 10.
  • Wyvern Sting – Decreases the cooldown of your Wyvern Sting by 6 sec.

Minor

  • Aspect of the Pack – Increases the range of your Aspect of the Pack ability by 15 yards.
  • Feign Death – Reduces the cooldown of your Feign Death spell by 5 sec.
  • Mend Pet – Your Mend Pet spell increases your pet’s happiness slightly.
  • Revive Pet – Reduces the pushback suffered from damaging attacks while casting Revive Pet by 100%.
  • Scare Beast – Reduces the pushback suffered from damaging attacks while casting Scare Beast by 75%.

(Yes, I know it links to the MMO-Champion database. I plan to fix this eventually!)

Stats

This list of explained stats is in priority order.

(Armor Pen is gone! It has been replaced with crit gems currently in game. No longer needed to be considered as a stat.)

Hit Rating – Of course. this is so your shots don’t miss. They changed the hit cap at 80. You now need 246 hit rating (8%) to be capped.

Agility -This is our bread and butter stat. Now agility gives us 2 AP per 1 Agility (Despite what the in game tooltip says). Agility also gives us crit rating. At 80 83.33 gives us 1% crit rating.

Mastery -Mastery as a stat increases the bonus of your spec mastery (See the Talent section).

Crit Rating – Causes our abilities to crit. At 80 45.91 Crit Rating gives 1% of Crit.

Haste Rating – Haste Rating helps us to increase our Global cooldown, auto shot speed, and steady/cobra shot speed. At level 80 32.79 haste rating gives 1% of haste.

Reforging

Reforging is this awesome new thing Blizzard gave us that lets us take 40% of any secondary stat and change it into a different stat. Secondary Stat? Yeah, you know the “On Equip” stats on gear. Those stats.

See how my Leggings of the Northern Lights say Equip: Improves critical strike rating by 83? Those are the stats that can be reforged. (You can also see how mastery displays on a reforged piece of gear).

The reforging NPC’s are located in all major cities near the Enchanting/Scribe trainers. If you really can’t find him, ask a guild. He’ll point you in the right direction.

Once you get there and open his Reforging panel you’ll see a little slot for a piece of gear. Drag what you want to reforge into that slot and two drop down boxes will appear. The left one is what stat you want to reduce and the right is what you want to change it into with each respected value (Ones being reduced and gained.) The bottom of the panel will show you what stat you’ll be loosing and what you will be gaining along with how much it costs.

Reforge Example

Hit reforge and it’s done.

As a hunter, all 3 specs benefit a GREAT deal from mastery rating so I suggest you go and reforge all your gear for mastery. Make sure you’re hit cap’d first, of course. What I did was took each piece of gear and looked to see if I would gain more mastery our of Reforging Crit or Haste and I chose depending on which would give me the most. Do this for every piece.

Well guys, that’s it! That should be just about everything you need to know to get going as a hunter in 4.0.1. As always, if you have any questions you can leave a comment below or contact me on twitter at @_Bliky. I would be happy to answer any questions you have. Don’t forget to link this post to your guild/friends!

~ Bliky

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