The Great Hunter Overhaul

I have noticed many threads across many different forums, particularly the ones here, talking about the want for a hunter overhaul. I agree with this whole heartedly, and while i know that any such idea would probably not be implemented, i feel that a thread highlighting possibilities in a constructive and cohesive way might lend to a possible conversation (or even silent ackowledgement) between us and the people who help run the game.

Many of the thought processes are focused around the differentiation of the three hunter specs. I agree with using the overhaul with this idea in mind. Right now the hunter specs are fairly close in terms of ability usage and overall feel, with bm being slightly more out there. The hunter specs are all about keeping up serpent sting, using your large damage cooldown focus dump, using arcane shot to dump focus, and a focus regen shot to generate focus, with one or two extra hiccups thrown in depending on spec. This needs to change in order for the specs to feel distinct once more.

Beast Mastery -

BM is, while dubious in a pvp sense, the most well-defined and 'different' of the hunter specs. However, this is limited in their their special ability (kill command) is little more than a different way to say 'Beast Mastery focus dump cooldown shot' as opposed to 'survival focus dump cooldown shot'. First, i believe we should remove cobra shot, serpent sting, and arcane shot from bm. Instead of those.. we add these new spec-defining abilities

Call of the Viper - 25 focus. Summons a viper pet to attack the target. This pet will put damage poisons on the target, and lasts until its focus runs out. It will have large enough health and avoidance. Ideally, this ability will be able to be glyphed to add mind numbing or slow poisons instead of damage poisons.

Treat Shot - instant, no cooldown. deals low nature damage and restores focus to you and all your pets (including the viper pet above).

Wild Shot - 15 focus, 2 second cast time. Deals moderate physical damage and summons a pet helper based on your current pet's spec for a short while (12 ish seconds). Ferocity summons a pet that deals slightly more damage than the others and puts a debuff on the target that increases damage taken from pets, cunning summons a pet that heals nearby allies for a small amount, and tenacity summons a pet that splits damage with your pet.

Kill Command - 50 focus. large pet damage attack, like currently. Additionally, any other pets you have active will also attack the target for an (lesser than your main pet but relevant) amount of damage.

Bestial wrath - 2 minute cooldown. Increases the damage dealt by you and your pets by 20% for 10 seconds, and makes your pets immune to crowd control effects. Additionally, while bestial wrath is active your pets cannot die and summoned pets will not despawn.

New Passive effects -
Animal husbandry - You are healed for a small percentage of the healing done to your pets. Your pets are healed for a small percentage of the healing done to you.

Combat Veternarianism - Wild Shot reduces the cast time of your next revive pet by 10%. stacks up to 10 times, lasts for 15 seconds.

I believe that these abilities could make beast mastery into a true master of beasts, summoning pets and exercising finesse and control over them by managing their focus and your focus, in a way that is different from what we are used to now.

Marksmanship -

I really like the idea behind MM, but not so much the execution. I believe that if MM was more fun/interesting to play, more people might start playing it. Right now MM has steady shot, aimed shot, and chimera shot going for it. A few quality of life changes could go a long way into making MM more distinct and interesting.

Vicious Shot - Replaces arcane shot. 25 Focus, Instant, medium physical damage shot. Applies the raid bleed damage debuff.

Scorpid Sting - Replaces serpent sting. 15 Focus, instant, lasts for 18 seconds. Deals physical nature damage (like chimera shot) every 6 seconds. The dot ticking rate will scale with haste. Chimera will refresh this.

Quiver of Elune - 3 minute cooldown. When Used, an eye of elune will form at your target's location if it is within 40 yards, which lasts 10 seconds. Allies standing within 40 yards of the eye will gain 20% critical strike damage. While the eye of elune is active, you will be able to target enemies within the line of sight of the eye as if they were in your own line of sight. Additionally, you will spawn an arrow of elune nearby every 2 seconds while the eye is active (See elune's arrows).

New Passive effects -
Deuces Wild - Whenever you trigger Steady Aim, your next shot that costs focus has a 100% chance to critically strike. Stacks up to 3 times.

New Mastery - Elune's Arrows - Your damaging shots have a 10% chance to cause an arrow of elune to fall on the floor nearby that only you can see. Your Critical strikes have a 20% chance to trigger this. Moving over this arrow will instantly fire it at your target, dealing X% (Base 70%) physical damage. Arrows last 3 minutes.

Cauterizing Buckshot - Your scatter shot cauterizes its target, consuming any damage over time effects on it, and also deals extra instant damage equal to the remaining piercing shot damage on the target.

The idea behind these changes is to make MM dinstinct by giving it an entirely new mechanic to play with, similar to the healing spheres pioneered by monks, except you will be able to save these up for bursty damage instead of bursty heals. Giving crits to steady aim is a good way to make all double steady shots 'matter', as opposed to just refreshing steady aim. Quiver of elune gives some much-needed raid utility and is a useful pvp spell, in addition to giving them another dps cooldown.

Survival -

I like where survival is ideologically, but it still feels somewhat 'wrong' to have a spec for the only ranged physical class focused on magic damage, especially so many different types of magic damage (five of them!). That and it has no actual survivability. That said, i think that survival is in a good place with regards to being cohesive. I think that survival should be more trap oriented, and be mid-range instead of long range, to make it distinctive. Survival would keep cobra and explosive shot(but explosive shot would get a slightly longer cooldown), but get new abilities as well. Lock and load wouldnt really have a place here, so it would be removed as well.

Snapfrost Shot - Replaces arcane shot. instant, no cooldown, 20 focus shot, deals frost damage and applies a 'chilled' debuff to the target. upon reaching 4 stacks, debuff changes to 'frosty', causing the next snapfreeze shot to deal increased damage.

Amalgamation Shot - Replaces black arrow. instant, 35 focus shot, deals fire, frost, and nature damage instantly, with a 22 second cooldown. Debuffs the target to take increased damage from explosive/immolation/snake trap, suffer increased slow from frost trap, and causes the next freezing trap on the target to be able to take a medium amount of damage before it breaks.

Survivalist - 2 minute cooldown. For 10 seconds, your frost and freezing, and your immolation and explosive traps have their cooldowns unlinked. additionally, your damaging traps placed under the effect of survivalist will deal increased damage.

New Passive effects -
Master of Traps - You may lay or launch traps while you are casting cobra or amalgamation shot. Using a trap ability while it is placed causes it to activate (does not use the GCD), but costs focus (figure 10-15). An activated immolation trap deals instant fire damage to all targets within 10 yards, and an activated freezing trap freezes the closest target within 10 yards.

Entrapment - Whenever your frost or snake traps are triggered... (Manual activations will not cause entrapment).

Thrill - Whenever one of your traps is activated or triggered, you are healed for 5% of your max health. A frost/freezing activation/trigger increases the focus regen of your next cobra shot. An immolation/explosive activation/trigger increases the damage of your next frost shot. A snake activation/trigger increases the damage of your next fire shot.

Black Ice - Moving over your frost trap effect grants you 40% increased movement speed. Any allies in your party or raid group who move over your frost trap gain 40% movement speed for 4 seconds, but this can only occur for each person once every 2 minutes.

These changes make survival trap oriented without (ideally) the trouble that comes with trying to make traps hit bosses reliably (due to the on demand activation).
You have some good ideas there (some feel a bit awkward), but overall good. I think we need a unified thread for this though.

Try posting your suggestions in here:

I believe we as a Hunter community need to discuss and come with a clear consensus on this much like the Warlocks did re: KJC, before we post on the DDF / PTR forums about our desired system revamp.

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