MM in 8.1 from a try hard raider

Hunter
After extensive testing on the PTR for the last few weeks I'd like to share my observations.

The Steady Aim build is dead...kind of. You can still run the trait and during Careful Aim windows the damage is still actually pretty good. On the raid dummy I can hold around 12k dps at 373 item level with no raid buffs, lust, pots, blah blah. My gear isn't best in slot but it is pretty strong. Now outside of Careful Aim the dps held is more around 8k. It is really bad. On some fights where the boss hovers in the 100-80% and 20-0% range for extended periods it might be okay. Far from ideal and mixed with the fact that the playstyle is dry and boring it doesn't feel great.

The new rapid fire trait is very nice. When stacking three of those traits my dps hovers in the 11k-13k range (a bit higher than live). The playstyle feels much more engaging and I really do dig it. You can switch up a few talents like Lethal Shots and Double Tap and give it a different feel between rapid fires. Aimed Shot in this build is really just a thing to cast to generate Precise Shots. It hits just a tiny bit harder than arcane and while it is still worth casting definitely doesn't feel as good as a stacked Steady Aim one feels. During Careful Aim windows it feels alright but again it still feels like filler while you wait for your next Rapid Fire. With Lethal Shots chosen I found myself more looking for my next Arcane Shot rather than Aimed.

The new Trueshot feels great with the Rapid Fire build. Rotating Aimed and Rapid Fire during the cooldown is smooth and I love the idea that haste caps will be important again to make it even smoother. Using the Steady Aim build is another story. I found it was actually a dps loss during TS to cast Rapid Fire. It was also a loss to use aimed as it came up instead of using Steady Shot to get to 5 stacks. The only reason to use Rapid Fire here was to try and build focus and Steady Shot ended up doing that better in the end.

AOE feels a touch better with Explosive Shot and it is a great change as ES was clunky to the point of annoyance before the change. Two target cleave is still missing and the recent nerfs to our three+ target damage with Rapid Fire and Aimed Shot are noticeable. With Explosive in the mix it is about a wash. I still don't see MM taking over BM and Survivals role in mythic+ in 8.1. A simple change to trick shots activating with two targets might tighten that gap but we all know that is wishful thinking.

Overall, we are still going to be pigeon holed into one set up in 8.1. I don't see any other path to take than the new Rapid Fire trait Surging Shots. Two or three of those will make the spec serviceable. If we get unlucky and don't get the drops with that trait it is going to be very rough sledding until we do. On the day 8.1 goes live we are looking at a significant dps loss. On the order of 15 to 20% assuming you were running with the Steady Aim build.

PvP with Surging Shots and Arcane Shot spam seems pretty good but I'll leave that to the PvP folks. I don't do enough of it for my opinion to matter there.

TLDR: Keep all your crit gear and get ready to hunt Surging Shot traits. Have BM or SV ready for the beginning of 8.1.
Interesting I am crit heavy right now. So I may just give that a try
Well this is the feedback I was looking for, but not the content I wanted.

I don't want to have to rely on stacking 3 traits to be viable and I was really just hoping that it would be in a better spot overall.

Thanks a lot for your hard work!
Thank you for the extensive testing, I'm actually pretty excited to try this out on the PTR.

PVP should be interesting with this kind of build
I'm hoping they do a numbers pass on MM..

I wanna go MM for the next tier, I prefer to switch each tier so I'm not bored...

Pet AI this xpac has been terrible to say the least, I love my moose but I'm ready to be petless that's for sure.
Honestly a numbers pass sounds like it's only part of the problem.

We really need some way to two target cleave, maybe a talent that Aimed shot ricochets and gets another nearby target for 100 or 50% damage or something?

Our talent tree is a usual mess. Explosive shot change is nice, but are you ever going to be able to take it over Careful Aim?

They should have kept marked shot, and just taken away the stupid damage buff it gave and normalized the damage. That's not helpful now but it's frustrating that it's going to take until 8.2 to get marks right only for them to just completely redo it again in 9.0.

To fix the current iteration, here is my proposal:

1. Reduce Aimed Shot to 2 second base cast.
2. Give us another ability that is instant cast but on a 10-15 sec CD. Costs Focus (used as a filler for Aimed Shots to beef the rotation). Make it our hardest hitting spell.
3. Remove the damage buff to Arcane Shots and buff the base damage.
4. Give Arcane shot a chance to reset our new CD spell (from 2) or give us a charge of Aimed Shot and make it instant cast.

5.Redo our talents a bit more and move Careful Aim from the AoE tier. In fact if they are going to keep Careful Aim just make it baseline or nerf it to unusability, cause there is no inbetween.

6. Buff Lone wolf to be better than having a pet for ST dps.
Sad to see what they've done to MM and continue to do. Used to be my favorite spec since vanilla until last couple expansions. Who knows how long azerite traits will have to be relied on as a band aid of sorts, before the spec is actually tuned and tweaked to stand on it's own.
11/09/2018 02:24 PMPosted by Tygûy
Explosive shot change is nice, but are you ever going to be able to take it over Careful Aim?


On PTR, Aimed Shot has a long cast, hits kind of weak, and takes focus and GCD’s away from Arcane Shot(focusing Arcane Shot can get your Trueshot CD down to ~1minute).

Aimed Shot kind of sucks outside of Trueshot(where it still hits weak, but has a 1s cast time)

This devalues Careful Aim. Explosive Shot, on the other hand, is kind of awesome.
I went for a different setup on the PTR. I was at 372 ilvl and used 2x Unerring Vision and 1x Surging Shots. 2 Unerring Vision takes crit chance 97% during Trueshot.

Trinkets:
Galecaller's Boon
Harlan's Loaded Dice

Stats:
I went with 13% crit (no crit gear only HoA crit buff)
22% Haste
15% Mastery

Dps Talents:
Master Marksman
Careful Aim
Hunter's Mark
Double Tap
Lock and Load

I was able to maintain between 15.5k to 16k dps on the dummy. Test was 4 minutes long each time.

Rotation when Trueshot was up, spam Aimed Shot followed by 1 Arcane Shot till focus was depleted then Rapid Fire and cast AiS again. I ignored the second Precise Shots buff during the TS window to save focus for AiS.

Without TS active I cast AiS and AS only when Precise Shots was up. RF would be cast on cooldown and took priority over AiS. When under 50 focus I would spam Steady Shot and when above 50 focus, if both AiS and RF were on cooldown, I would cast Steady Shot followed by AS to avoid focus cap, then back to AiS and RF. Also using Galecaller's Boon and Double Tap on cooldown and only used Double Tap with AiS.

I tried 2x surging shots and using streamline, I found the dps to be slightly less and the rotation to be way more clunky.
Probably going to be unviable next tier if we don't get two target cleave.
While I've yet to play the 8.1 ptr I'm currently running the machinegun build on live and find it rather fun. Its a shame that's being nerfed in 8.1 considering that one of the main selling points of azerite armor was to alter rotations.

Throwing some suggestions to fix some of the MM issues could be achieved without a full revamp.

Firstly make trickshot make aim shot or rapid fire cleave one nearby target for full damage as a passive and not tied to multi shot.

Secondly make casting 2 multi shots within say a 6 second window proc volley for added baseline aoe like the old bombardment passive.

Some of the talents would need adjusting here are my suggestions.

Swap master marksman and careful aim(maybe give it a minor buff to compete with crows and serpent sting if required).

Change master marksman to cause precise shots empowered arcane and multi shots to also add a small bleed for a % of the damage done.

Volley would obviously need to be removed and could be replaced with a talent that makes trickshot cleave one additional target.

I would also swap piercing shot with lethal shots and change how lethal shot works again to give a stacking buff that adds 20% crit chance to your next aimed or rapid fire for each steady shot cast.

I think with these simple changes it would preserve the spec fix some of the issues MM has while preserving the machinegun spec.
11/09/2018 10:30 PMPosted by Straferr
I went for a different setup on the PTR. I was at 372 ilvl and used 2x Unerring Vision and 1x Surging Shots. 2 Unerring Vision takes crit chance 97% during Trueshot.

Trinkets:
Galecaller's Boon
Harlan's Loaded Dice

Stats:
I went with 13% crit (no crit gear only HoA crit buff)
22% Haste
15% Mastery

Dps Talents:
Master Marksman
Careful Aim
Hunter's Mark
Double Tap
Lock and Load

I was able to maintain between 15.5k to 16k dps on the dummy. Test was 4 minutes long each time.

Rotation when Trueshot was up, spam Aimed Shot followed by 1 Arcane Shot till focus was depleted then Rapid Fire and cast AiS again. I ignored the second Precise Shots buff during the TS window to save focus for AiS.

Without TS active I cast AiS and AS only when Precise Shots was up. RF would be cast on cooldown and took priority over AiS. When under 50 focus I would spam Steady Shot and when above 50 focus, if both AiS and RF were on cooldown, I would cast Steady Shot followed by AS to avoid focus cap, then back to AiS and RF. Also using Galecaller's Boon and Double Tap on cooldown and only used Double Tap with AiS.

I tried 2x surging shots and using streamline, I found the dps to be slightly less and the rotation to be way more clunky.


Was the dummy in the careful aim window the whole time you were testing?

Yea, can't replicate numbers like you are saying you hold with that build at all. It's definitely decent, but holding 16k, not even close, more like 12k. Even with Careful Aim and the dummy at full health 13k was about my sustain. That isn't bad at all, no doubt. I like it, thanks for the input. I'll try it with galecallers, don't have that one on live as SoS is cancer.
11/11/2018 02:36 PMPosted by Gunshy


Was the dummy in the careful aim window the whole time you were testing?

Yea, can't replicate numbers like you are saying you hold with that build at all. It's definitely decent, but holding 16k, not even close, more like 12k. Even with Careful Aim and the dummy at full health 13k was about my sustain. That isn't bad at all, no doubt. I like it, thanks for the input. I'll try it with galecallers, don't have that one on live as SoS is cancer.


I have a screen cap here: https://imgur.com/GvX9cYJ

Also was using incendiary Ammunition.

Edit: I also bought all the Haste and Mastery gear from the vendors next to the dummy, you can pick up Galecallers from there too.

I also found Calling the Shots is better than Lock n Load for this build.
11/12/2018 12:18 AMPosted by Straferr
11/11/2018 02:36 PMPosted by Gunshy


Was the dummy in the careful aim window the whole time you were testing?

Yea, can't replicate numbers like you are saying you hold with that build at all. It's definitely decent, but holding 16k, not even close, more like 12k. Even with Careful Aim and the dummy at full health 13k was about my sustain. That isn't bad at all, no doubt. I like it, thanks for the input. I'll try it with galecallers, don't have that one on live as SoS is cancer.


I have a screen cap here: https://imgur.com/GvX9cYJ

Also was using incendiary Ammunition.

Edit: I also bought all the Haste and Mastery gear from the vendors next to the dummy, you can pick up Galecallers from there too.

I also found Calling the Shots is better than Lock n Load for this build.


That makes more sense, do all my testing on the raid dummy.
I was afraid of this.

The devs didn't want to make Aimed Shot castable while moving so they just nerfed the crap out of it while buffing Rapid Fire to hell and back. SMGDH.
11/12/2018 05:54 PMPosted by Gunshy
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I have a screen cap here: https://imgur.com/GvX9cYJ

Also was using incendiary Ammunition.

Edit: I also bought all the Haste and Mastery gear from the vendors next to the dummy, you can pick up Galecallers from there too.

I also found Calling the Shots is better than Lock n Load for this build.


That makes more sense, do all my testing on the raid dummy.


Yeah my bad, I went to the raiding dummy, and yeah 13k (hit 13.8k in my highest test) average in careful aim, outside careful aim, I was holding between 11.5-12kdps.

Don't know what the rotation should be, but this build feels natural to me I guess. I also like the fact the the damage in this build isn't random, when you pop trueshot, you know you are going to see big numbers.
11/09/2018 11:21 AMPosted by Moonuredps

Pet AI this xpac has been terrible to say the least, I love my moose but I'm ready to be petless that's for sure.


I love how if you don't teleport your pet into the room before the fight starts, you're stuck fighting Taloc with no pet until you dissmiss/resummon. T-thanks Blizz.

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