Q: If there's no hybrid tax, what's the point of playing a pure DPS class? Raid/pug leaders will always prefer players that can fill multiple roles. When hybrids like Boomkin and Shadow Priests are out DPSing the four pure classes across most parses, I think something's wrong.combined with the new style of talents in 5.0 got me thinking. Changing Beast Mastery to be a tanking spec, as has been suggested in the past, seems just unlikely. The spec is still an interesting and widely loved way to play DPS (whether it is balanced or not is an unrelated issue). Instead I propose the following for discussion, and hopefully, consideration:
A: We want to make sure there are pure DPS classes in raids. That doesn't mean that hybrids just have to be support classes as they were back in the BC days. But it does mean that you should neglect mages, locks, rogues and hunters at your peril. There may very well be more hybrids, because they just have a chance at more roles, so you can't just look at popularity of classes, but we will take steps to make sure the pures don't vanish.
A fourth spec for hunters dedicated to tanking. The idea would revolve around,
- 1. Having much more direct control of one's pet, likely removing a lot of the automatic skills pets currently use, or even just translating them to something more situational and tank-related while in this spec. These abilities would likely reflect a lot of the core tanking abilities we see in other tanking specs. They would, however, use the pet's focus, and not the Hunter's.
2. Using (comparitively) low-damage AoE attacks (could be channeled, casted, or instant depending on the ability) from the hunter itself. These attacks would not only damage or negatively status enemies, but buff your pet tank in very specific ways. These could be buffs ranging from momentary shields similar to priests, defense increases, increased threat generation, buffs to damage, or any other number of things that would regularly benefit a tank. The hunter could of course still spend their time with more single target core DPS skills in lieu of buffing their pet when appropriate or necessary.
3. Given 2, the pet itself would be naturally weaker than say a Warrior or Death Knight, but when given the proper AoE's from the supporting hunter, they would match or possibly excel past other tanks in the specific stat the hunter is providing. This could also be balanced around the AoE's from the hunter providing specific debuffs to enemies instead of or even as well as the buffs to the pet (i.e. instead of buffing spell resist, lowering spell damage on enemies in the area, OR buffing spell resist only a little, AND lower enemy spell damage only a little). These could even have trade offs for balancing purposes (raise defense, lower pet's focus gain, etc) but I figure in most cases, the lower base stats for pets would be enough trade off as is.