Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Survival Hunter

Updated:  April 23rd 2009
(Updated DPS on Go for the Throat)

Talent, Glyph and Attribute DPS are calculated given the following:
My base spec, shot rotation, 25 man raid buffs (all class buffs) and gear.
The closer you are to my spec, shot rotation, buffs and gear, the more accurate the following DPS #'s will be for you.
All of these #'s come from Shandara's Spreadsheet.

Base Spec: Survival PvE Spec 0/16/55 (post 3.1)
Normal Shot Rotation:
Rapid Fire / Blood Fury / Trinkets > Explosive Shot > Kill Shot > Black Arrow > Serpent Sting > Aimed Shot > Steady Shot
Aimed Shot only provides a 22 DPS increase from using Multi-Shot in its place.  But I take Aimed Shot because I like to be able to use it on the move.
Lock & Load Shot Rotation:
Explosive Shot - 0.5 sec - Explosive Shot - 0.5 sec - Explosive Shot
This is the optimal shot rotation to use while under the effects of Lock and Load.  It allows all the ticks to proc after each Explosive Shot since you wait the GCD + 0.5 sec after every ES.
If lag is a problem or if you do not want to deal with timing issues this L&L rotation is only slightly less damage:
Explosive Shot - Steady Shot or Aimed Shot or Serpent Sting (if it just fell off) - Explosive Shot - SS or AS or SS - Explosive Shot
Attribute DPS (post 3.1)
Agility is by far the best stat to stack as a Survival Hunter.  One Agility is worth almost 50% more than two Attack Power. 
Survival Hunter Talent DPS (post 3.1)   

Amazing Talents:
Go for the Throat - 1st point gives over 300 DPS, and the 2nd point even gives over 100 DPS!
Careful Aim - Over 100 DPS per talent point!
Lock and Load - Over 100 DPS per talent point!
Hunter vs Wild - Over 100 DPS per talent point!
Expose Weakness - 150 DPS for the 1st talent point!

Overrated Talents:
Trap Mastery - Only 21 DPS per talent point, merely okay.

Survival Hunter Glyph DPS (post 3.1)

The glyphs of Explosive Shot and Kill Shot are must have glyphs for Survival.

For my 3rd glyph I would most likely pick up the Serpent Sting glyph, which would make my shot rotation a bit easier.

Even though the Serpent Sting glyph in theory is less DPS than the Steady Shot or IAotH glyph, in real practice with errors involved, I would bet the Serpent Sting glyph would always be better for DPS.


Anonymous said...

thanks for the very readable sum-up. the only thing i wondered about was the PvE-Specc, MM here. you picked improved stings instead of focused aim...focused aim is missing in the table. i assume you are hitcapped and therefore the value would be zero? i also assume most of us hunters out there are a fair bit off from the 9% hit for the number for focused aim below the hitcap would be nice. should be around 30, i guess.

Anonymous said...

and yet another question:
with the significant dropp in steyd dps, is it really not paying off to include multi-shot in the rotation? the damage is significantly higher and is uses only one GCD as well.

and added to that: if mlti was included, how about the dps gain from that glyph? i guess mltishot averages somewhere around 1700 - 1900, so the glyph should be around 20 dps?

Shaedon said...

Focused Aim: It does not give your pet hit, so if your are below the hit cap and use Focused Aim to get there, your pet hates you, and you end up losing some decent damage.

Hit cap is 8%. It is pretty easy to get there once you do a week or two of 10 mans.

Aimed Shot and Multi-Shot are on the same CD, so since I have Aimed Shot I would use Aimed Shot over Multi-Shot everytime. As you can use Aimed Shot on the run and do not have to stop for .5 seconds like Multi-Shot.

Anonymous said...

thanks for your reply, the fact about hit conversion to pets (and the missing of that in the talent) was completely new to me...i believed only AP were converted and nothing else. i am, however, quite sure its 9% hitcap, but that is not the matter at hand.

to the multi/aimed:
yeah, they share a CD...and yes, aimed can be used on the run...also i think aimed is a litle bit cheaper in mana, but not much. but unless specced deep into marks, aimed and multi do exactly the same damage (to one target). while you still cannot cast multi on the run, dps while running are generally not good...the point why i mentioned it is really the glyph. as far as i know (but i might be wrong about that) the multishot glyph reduces only the cooldown triggered by multishot. while the cooldown is stil shared, you will get 10 seconds for both if using aimed, 9 seconds for both if using multi...again: i might be wrong, really only tested this very short without any special tools. but if my oberservation is true, multi would be superior to aimed with the glyph...especially since there really isnt another truely useful third glyph for SV.

Shaedon said...

It is 8% hit. Trust me. It should be 9%, but through real world testing Elitist Jerks community has confirmed it is 8% hit. I have just over 8% hit and have never missed while raiding the past few weeks.

There are other glyphs that are good for Survival.

Serpent Sting and Steady Shot Glyphs are the must have Glyphs.

Hunter's Mark Glyph is a solid Glyph if you do not put points into IAotH.

Multi-Shot is a DPS downgrade from using Aimed Shot in a rotation. Sniper Training boosts Aimed Shot damage. Even without Sniper Training, Aimed Shot is a 10 DPS increase in damage over Multi-Shot. If you used the Glyph of Multi-Shot you might be able to do comparable damage, but you would lose a Glyph slot and overall would lose damage.

Anonymous said...

hi again,

i just wanted to thank you for your blog and the answers above. after testing what you said about the hit for pets and 8% hitcap, as well as multi/aimed in rotations i can confirm it works out to be true. you helped me to improve both my knowledge and performance as a raiding hunter, thanks a lot!

Sithian said...

Hey since i changed from BM to SV after the patch i have noticed that in the raids im agro happy... Is there any key tips you can give me? I do feign death at the right points I just miss the low threat from BM :P

Shaedon said...

Yes, I'm in the same boat aggro wise. I've pulled threat on Malygos and died because of it.

I would suggest waiting to blow your cooldowns / trinket until at least 5-10 seconds into the fight.

I would start out the fight applying Hunter's Mark and then Serpent Sting.

Explosive Shot can then be applied and I would feign death before using your cooldowns / trinket. If feign death resists, than I would hold back on using your cooldowns / trinket unless your threat is below 50%.

Basically we are just back to pre WotLK where we had to watch our threat and feign death semi-early to maintain low threat.

Also, get the Minor Glyph of Feign Death. Should help in PvP and PvE.

Sithian said...

Awesome thank you very much for the tips :)

Anonymous said...

that last coment on multi does not look right to me...GCD starts when clicking the button, not after the cast. if it were the way u says steady would be wothless with its 2s std cast as well.

Shaedon said...

You are totally right. Didn't think that one over. Good call.

Repaxan said...

How did you get the DPS values per talent?

Shaedon said...

With the Shandara's Spreadsheet it calculates the DPS you get from talents, gear, and shot rotation. So by taking away talents one at a time, given a base build, you figure out what the talent is worth in DPS.

Anonymous said...

Hey, I'm 8% on hit and don't miss on Heroic dummy. I assume raid bosses would be a tad harder to hit thus closer 9% would be a reasonable approx on hitcap. Just my input on the people doubting. I heard 8.6% from other sources. Meh.

Was just here to say since BM nerf i tried marksman and didnt enjoy it (expect for aimed shotting paladins -_-) and went straight back to BM, truthfully i thought survival is for huntards and excessive trap users. I read up on the dps increases and shot rotations and talent builds and found this seems to be a much more complex and enjoyable spec, with this spec its also be noted that versus a similar geared BM friend i output almost 1k more damage per sec and 3 times the damage before oom. I won't quote numbers and embarrass myself. But i was more than a little chuffed.

Great read. Great PvE build.

Anonymous said...

Quote Shaedon:
"It is 8% hit. Trust me. It should be 9%, but through real world testing Elitist Jerks community has confirmed it is 8% hit."

i can confirm this is true, if you are aliance and have a draenei in you raid group 7% hit is the cap you can aim for now if you really want to go for optimal numbers.

MM, imho, has been hurt most by the steady nerf...MM has always been the most mana-intense specc, steady was a way to reach "reasonable" damage despite that fact, now its gone....leaving out any other specials to fill GCDs will hit your DPS hard....improved steady shot has been obliterated...oh is not really a new feeling to get the shaft as PvE-MM....

Jellybear said...

Hi! First of all i just want to say that it was very intresting reading this through. And now for my question. What pet would be the most effectiv with this specc?

Jelly/emeriss eu

Shaedon said...

Pets are decently balanced at the moment. The talent trees are not balanced yet, but Ferocity pets are close in damage.

So for PvE, Raptors, Cats and Wasps are very good choices. Wasps pull ahead if you don't have a Feral Druid for Faerie Fire.

For PvP I enjoy a Wasp for the instant rez and the Sting.

Anonymous said...

sniper training isn't 30m range anymore, just standing still 6 sek

Trackerbr - Warsong said...

Hi every one, about Focused Aim, at elitist it´s a comment about hit capped transfer to pet too. This is correct???

Shaedon said...

Come 3.1 Focused Aim now also give Hit to your pet.

Shakamoolu said...

Hi, for aggro management, i've set up a missdirect macro with the main tank as the target and fire that off every time it's on cooldown. haven't been able to try it on 3.1 yet, but should help.

I'm really sad that my wolf's buff isn't raid/group wide anymore. No reason to bring him now.

Shaedon said...

Are you kidding me? The wolf was worthless before 3.1. It didn't stack with a Paladin's Might or a Warriors Shout. Now it does, and is the best pet for Marks and Survival, and 2nd best pet for BM.

Shakamoolu said...

yeah, i have a thing about typing without thinking, or reading for that matter.

Trackerbr - Warsong said...

What is best? Spend 3 points at Focused Aim and use gems to improve another stat like Agi at Surv Hunters or spend this points at another skill ???? What spec will use Focused Aim better to save Gem slots?????

Shaedon said...

With decent 25 man Naxx gear I am easily at 8% hit cap without even gemming for hit.

But since Focused Aim now works on your pet, it is not terrible like it used to be.

It is actually an option for people with gear that does not have much Hit.

I would say spec into it if you need to, and spec out of it once you have better gear with more Hit.

Anonymous said...

So the glyphs that are "must have" are Serpent Sting and Steady shot? Explosive Shot is on the top of your DPS increase list, and you say you would probably take Explshot, kill shot, and SS glpyhs (factoring in errors in rotation you think Serpent Sting Glyph would yield more DPS than Steady Shot in practice), but then you said in one of your replies that the Steady Shot/Serpent Sting Glyphs are the must haves... I'm confused, which three Major Glyphs are the best/would you recommend for maximal DPS increase in practice (assuming errors)?

Thanks, and great, understandable breakdown.

Shaedon said...

Some of my comments are older comments that do not deal with 3.1.

Explosive Shot and Kill Shot are the essential glyphs for Survival PvE for 3.1.

I would recommend Serpent Sting glyph as the 3rd, but its not essential.

Sithian said...

Hey all, I'd like to say since i've been using these tips shot rotations and glyphs etc my dps has sky rocketed so i'd like to say a big thank you :)

Zerlegen said...

Any suggestions for a Ferocity Pet Talent build? Cat is teamed up with a survival hunter.

Shaedon said...

This is the build I use for Ferocity pets. It should be the maximum DPS PvE build.

Zerlegen said...

Interesting. I was guessing I should go with Shark Attack over Wild Hunt. I will have to play around some more, but thank you for the talent suggestion.

Shaedon said...

Yup, Wild Hunt is just a little bit better DPS than Shark Attack, but it is very close.

The added bonus is that Wild Hunt also gives your pet more stamina.

Anonymous said...

What about PVP, how would your 3.1 build look?

Shaedon said...

Well, I'm not sure, as I don't plan to play Survival PvP in the short term. I think I'll stick with Marks and BM.

Anonymous said...

Just curious what to expect on a Heroic Dummy. Hitting around 3k atm with cat pet, using spec and rotation you mentionned , just got wolf this morning. Gear wise just missing 4 items to be best in slot ( pre-ulduar of course ).

Hane said...

Things to consider with that spec:
1) You do not need two points in Go for the Throat, ESPECIALLY as a survival hunter. You crit every third hit or so, giving your pet at least full focus every three seconds. That is plenty more than needed with only one point in it.
2) No points in Trap Mastery? You don't want your Black Arrow's periodic damage to do 30% more? Really?
3) Hawk Eye? For what purpose? Range no longer affects Sniper Training, so it holds no purpose in furthering your dps then.
4) Personally, I do not use Wyvern Sting in pve. I feel that string of talent points is better spent elsewhere (see Focused Aim all you hunters who are nowhere near hit capped! 1% reduction could be the difference between you hitting the mob or not)
5) I'm going to take Glpyh of AotV (increases the amount of mana gained from attacks while Aspect of the Viper is active by 10%) any day over the Explosive Shot crit chance, even with explosive shot's scaling having been reduced. Less time in Viper = more uptime in Dragonhawk = way more dps.

Hane of Andorhal

Shaedon said...

Trap Mastery is one of the worst talents for DPS in the Survival tree.

Most of the tougher fights in Naxx were much easier for Hunters if they have Hawk Eye. I find that it does increase my dps on those fights.

So replacing Trap Mastery with Hawk Eye is a no brainer for me, since I don't lose out on much DPS, and probably gain DPS in actual fights (don't have to move as much to get in range and so forth).

I do not use Wyvern Sting in PvE either. The point is to get to Noxious Stings which is 50 DPS per a point (150 DPS for all 3).

I'm not sure what you've been smoking but Glyph of the Viper is about the worst DPS glyph since Survival Hunters do not run out of mana in the first place, and even if they do, it's still the worst Glyph for DPS.

The only way Glyph of the Viper would be decent is if you spent 50% of the fight in Aspect of the Viper. And trust me, you would be last in DPS every time if you did that, Glyph or not.

Sithian said...

Hey Shaedon, i've found my recount is showing more dps for MM spec... where on SV now i seem to be doing allot less? I used to be hitting 3.2k on SV now around 2.4k and now on MM im doing 2.9k easy is it by chance Black ice is not showing on the dmg for recount?

Or is MM the best spec to go for dmg in raids now?

Shaedon said...

The rotation for MM is much cleaner than the rotation for Survival. In theory Survival still is more DPS, in practice its probably pretty close.

Marks is definitely a spec you can use now in raids and pull off very good damage, which is great because its my favorite spec for PvE.

Mack said...

Hi Shaedon, i would like to know if you use any macros.

Shaedon said...

I just use macros to add in shots like Silencing Shot and Explosive Hand Rockets to all my shots (as those are off the GCD).

I basically just use very basic macros, nothing special.

Anonymous said...

Hi Shaedon.
Well i see my dps dropt a LOT in trash mobs, do you have any specific rotation on trash? or is just volley?

Shaedon said...

I usually Multi-Shot than Volley if there is 3-5 mobs. If there is more than 5 mobs than I just Volley.

Jerkogist said...

Hi Shaedon,

I have seen numerous recount data, with hunters dealing 5.2Kdps and topping the chart, if not somewhere in the top 3.

how do you clock the 5.2Kdps?
The shot rotation is very simple of manipulating between BA, ES, SS, AS throughout the fight and including KS in the last 20% phase.

I have seen hunters hitting 5000+ damage on ES. How do they manage to do it? Is their RAP really that high? My ES is ticking at approx 3.5K in damage. So it's pretty demoralising to see low numbers popping even when it crits.

Effi said...

I was just wondering.. Since this is a dps build, how come you chose Hawkeye instead of Trap Mastery which would grant you 3*21dps if selected?

Effi said...

Uhm, never mind.. I just noticed you answered that already :)

Anonymous said...


really useful post, thanks a lot. one question though:

it says careful aim in MM gives a decent amount of dps, is this really true cuz i cant see AP being increased by 100-200 (depending on gear you are likely to have between 300 and 600 intellect) giving that much of a dps boost?

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry, but your argument for Hawk Eye over Trap Mastery is laughable.

There are only 4 fights in Naxx where a hunter is forced to move to avoid dieing. Heigan, Four Horsemen, Thaddius, and Sapphiron. Sapphiron is about the only fight where max distance comes in handy, and it still very doable (easy in fact) without the extra yardage with Hawk Eye. In the case of the other 3 fights, you'll never find yourself in a situation where that distance is necessary/possible. In the case of Heigan and Four Horseman, moving strategically will actually improve your DPS compared to other classes. I regularly crush other classes on the meter in those fights because I am able to be mobile and maintain a steady stream of periodic and non-periodic damage.

The reason that Trap Mastery is actually useful is in fights that actually require coordinated movement from the group, and you don't have to sacrifice as much DPS because you have to move.

Shaedon said...

You can have your 60 extra dps from Trap Mastery (20 dps per talent point). That is not going to put you way ahead on any meter, don't be delusional.

To me Hawk Eye is the Hunter playstyle, and there are plenty of fights where I like to have extra range.

Anonymous said...

That would be "a playstyle" not "the playstyle". Most high end raiders spec to squeeze the maximum damage they can out of a talent tree.

You are making a personal decision based on preference rather than maximum DPS. You don't see the hunters in Ensidia specking into Hawk Eye, they spec into Trap Mastery.

I not telling you how to play or anything, but your spec is not the optimal PvE build for Survival.

Shaedon said...

I agree, its my playstyle.

And this blog is to help other hunters determine what fits best with their playstyle.

That is why I find out the #'s for every DPS Talent for the three main specs, so you can intelligently choose your own talent spread.

Other sites can give you "the best spec", but not many sites give you the rundown on how every talent effects your DPS.

Effi said...

I approve of the Hawk eye over Trap based on personal preference as long as it is backed up and explained.
Yesterday in Ulduar, on the Robot (cant remember name atm), depending on how the tactics are done, you are most likely to have to run away from the raid to avoid AOE damage. When doing so, without Hawkeye, one is very likely to be OOR and thus loose alot of dps if this happens frequently to your char.
Hawkeye kept my dps up when getting debuffed 4 times during the fight.

Anonymous said...

Can you please go over the mechanics of determining Glyph DPS, because I'm finding it hard to replace Steady Shot with Kill Shot. It seems to me that +10% dmg on something that is in your rotation multiple times, 100% of the time, would be way better than a 6s timer reduction on a shot that is still on a long timer and only available below 20% health. I mean, in high dps groups that would buy you an extra two or three Kill Shots per boss fight?

Shaedon said...

Well, the spreadsheet runs calculations on anything, and in theory it probably has you doing more steady shots, since it predicts tank and spank fight.

To get the Steady Shot Glyph DPS I apply it to the character, look at DPS, and then take it off the character, wahlah.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree, that traps mastery over Hawk eye is the obvious choice for maximizing dps, at LEAST in naxxramas. Typically u don't want to be farther away, due to the limited range of some buffs and the trap mastery is an actual dps increase. Also for those of you wondering if focused aim is a good talent, its an excellent talent, assuming you aren't at hit cap. For 3 points that can be put to only limited use elsewhere u gain the equivalent of about 100 hit rating. now that it also affects pet hit rating, it has become very useful.

Wotters said...

I agree now that focused aim is useful (since affecting my pet) as I can drop some of my hit gems and stick in some agility ones and still be over the 8% hit cap, but what i want to know is not to be confused with focused aim, but is actually about CAREFUL AIM in the MM tree.

It improves your AP by 100% of your int when you get all 3 points in it. What i want to know is: Is this really worth the 3 points, or am i better putting them into RESOURCEFULNESS or HUNTING PARTY in the survival tree?

Advice from all would be aprreciated.



Wotters said...

Also, for those interested in helping out, the spec I am thinking about is

Also on the fence about glyphs. Not sure about Kill shot vs Steady Shot glyph like a few others on here...

Feel free to steal it for yourself if you think it's good and feel free to give me any pointers if you think I should change anything.



Shaedon said...

As you can see from the Talent DPS spreadsheet, Careful Aim is worth about 110 DPS per talent point, so it is definitely worth investing the points into it.

And the Kill Shot glyph for Survival Hunters is the better glyph according to the spreadsheet.

Anonymous said...

Hello Shaedon:

Could you please explain more about the update of GFTT dps update?
I am a bit can 2nd point in GFTT gives over 100 dps for survival spec..
but on your BM PVE spec guide..
2nd point GFTT gives 0 dps increase..

is it because BM pet generate focus too fast and pet skill is not fast enough to dump it?

Shaedon said...

It is because with 2 points in Bestial Discipline a BM Hunters pet is generating more Focus.

Xoros said...

I know you want to leave Call of the Wild and Furious Howl (pet talents) up always for PvE.

But was wondering if it was possible to set up a macro to activate those on demand, say...for burst PvP DPS (i.e. wanted to insert it into my Blood Fury/Trinket/Hyperspeed Accel burst macro).

If so, what's the actual macro command?

Thanks for all the great info posted thus far, much appreciated.

Shaedon said...

I leave Furious Howl on autocast as it has a very short cooldown.

/cast Call of the Wild
/cast Furious Howl

Add those lines in your macro, as they do not take a GCD or pet GCD, and you should be golden.

Anonymous said...

Question on rotation:

Why do you put explosive shot ahead of kill shot in the rotation?

My own rotation is

Kill Command/Hunters Mark > Rapid fire > trinkets > black arrow > serpent sting > kill shot > explosive shot > aimed shot > steady shot

Shaedon said...

I believe Explosive Shot does more damage than even Kill Shot.

If you are not using Explosive Shot whenever it is off the cooldown than your are losing a lot of DPS.

For example, don't refresh Serpent Sting if Explosive Shot is off cooldown, you will lose damage.

Chibs said...

I first of all like to thank you for maintaining this site, it has helped me and allot of hunters allot. As you said before in one of the comments Agro is becoming a real problem here, I am now the standard vigilance bitch for our warrior tank, since i give him about 1k tps, but still i need to MD as often as i can and even FD some times when we dun have our best geared tank up. So maybe you add a little thing in the bottum about agro management like a focus MD macro and that kinda stuff.

Furthermore i loved reading the Hawk's eye and Trap mastery discussion cause that's what all should always consider, Yes their is a highest DPS spec, however if it doesn't fit your playing style you will always put out less dps, then something that does fit your style.

Thx again for maintaining this site it has been great so far, keep up the good work

Anonymous said...

i have searched far and wide for a site like this ... keep up the good work ...

Ninjahunter - 80 - Illidan

Anonymous said...

nice Spec this is what im using too. But i saw your MM tree you really dont need 2 points in Go for the throat thats overkill. I instead put 2 points in hunting party on survival. wouldnt this be more DPS?.. Especially since your Glyph of Explosive shot = More Crit which = to more Focus for pets in raids

Shaedon said...

2 points in GffT is now needed according to the spreadsheet.

The focus a pet generates has been changed in the spreadsheet and has caused the 2nd point in GffT to now be beneficial (even on stand still fights), as I gain 100 DPS from it.

On fights where you have to move (most fights in Ulduar), 2 points in GffT will give me even more of a DPS gain.

Anonymous said...

Thx for clearing that up.. I was talking to a hunter on Tank spot he was the one telling me that i didnt need that extra point in Gftt instead put it in Hunting Party I'll give that a try since i know that now thx for the info

Anonymous said...

Hmm, what about using Boar's speed instead of one point in Bloodthirsty in the pet talent tree, wouldent that been a dps upgrade?

Shaedon said...

I like an always happy pet, that makes sure my pet is always doing the most damage it can. I also like that Bloodthirsty heals my pet, so that keeps my pet alive longer, which is always nice.

I would say Bloodthirsty is better than increased movement speed as Dive & Dash will usually be up when your pet needs to get somewhere.

Anonymous said...

Yeah I agree, thx.

Anonymous said...

I personally feel like hawk eye is a reasonable talent. In fights where positioning is important (like emalon for instance) I tend to find myself ending up at max range from either emalon or the adds. But that is just me.

Anonymous said...

Since Explosive shots now give pet focus as they should have done in the first place, as since 3.1.2, would you still recommend 2 points in this? Can you back that up if you do?

Shaedon said...

The latest spreadsheet is still showing a gain of 80 dps with the 2nd point in GffT as Survival in 25 man raid buffs.

What is interesting, is that the spreadsheet also assumes you never move in the fight, so the actual dps in 95% of boss fights will be greater.

Dewman said...

eh, i was wondering, many hunters tell me to open up with black arrow, explo then a Serpent sting, but because of the damage buff you get when serpent sting is up (3% dmg buff with 3/3 Noxious Stings) i thought i should open with serpent, black and then explo ? imo thats how it should work, but will my dps be miximized with blowing BA and being able to apply it 1 extra time later on in the fight ?

dewman - Jaedenar

Dewman said...

aswell, if im hit capped, and i have the gear to cap steady shot, even with the nerf is it worth capping the haste so its a 1.5 sec cast(same as the GCD) after all, we all need 1 to 2 steadys within a rotation, its not completely useless... ? :) :)

Shaedon said...

I would say you would not lose much damage from using Black Arrow - Serpent Sting - Explosive Shot to begin fights.

But it is generally thought that you should favor Explosive Shot over Serpent Sting when both are coming off cooldown at the exact same time.

As for capping haste, I wouldn't worry about it. If the gear that has more haste also has better stats, than for shizzle, but if your losing out on stats for haste, its a bad tradeoff (haste is one of the worst per item budget DPS attributes).

Anonymous said...

I'm just stunned by the fact that adding in all the usual raid buffs doubles your DPS.

I just wish people would only talk about unbuffed DPS, as seen at a target dummy where you're on your own and don't want to be wasting pots, food or scrolls.

Shaedon said...

People don't talk about unbuffed DPS because the only situation where that comes into pure effect is solo'ing content.

Most people tend to raid and henceforth receive buffs. Also shot rotations and the like are really only seen in raids, where one can stand relatively still and can mostly focus on DPS'ing.

In PvP shot rotations are not used, so Theorycrafting about DPS numbers is irrelevant.

RJ said...

Maybe a weird question Shaedon, but i've been reading the comment @ noxious stings for many times. But it says when wyvern sting is dispelled then you get 3% extra dmg on serpent sting to me. Is this just a bad explanation of Blizzard? I sure hope it is the 2nd one. Else the noxious stings have no use.

Maybe a suggestion but wouldn't it be better to get both Trap mastery and Noxious stings instead of hawk eye? So you benefit from both? Or is this not possible?

Thank you for answering in forward,
Greetings RJ

Shaedon said...

It is a bad explanation by blizzard. The ", and" signify that in addition to the Wyvern Sting dispel switcheroo you also get a 3% (1% per talent point) damage increase when your Serpent Sting is on the target.

Basically its just a separate bonus, that has no contingency with dispelling Wyvern Sting.

vanilla said...

Hi my comment is a bit off the topic My character is Firstczar I ma at Crushridge, I have good gear, I know a lot about how to play a hunter, This is my problem: When in 25 man raids, we have othe rhunters with exact same gear as me pulling 1500-2000 more dps, I use same rotations, same priority que. Can someone take a moment and look at my armory and give me some pointers, pls, I am being laughed at. Help, pls

Shaedon said...

Your gear and spec look fine.

I would make sure you have the highest ranks of Explosive Shot trained if you use Survival in raids.

Always keep up Black Arrow whenever you can as Survival and always use Explosive Shot right when its available.

As a Marksman Hunter make sure you are applying Serpent Sting before you use Chimera Shot (and then you never need to use Serpent Sting again unless it falls off, as Chimera refreshes it).

Those are just the basic tips as if you just do that, you should be within 1k dps of the best hunters who maximize their rotations and what not.

vanilla said...

HI, Shaedon.
TY for answering my question, everything u mentioned I am already doing.
But I did notice 1 thing. In your chart you have the pet doing in the neighborhood of 1100 dps, I am referring to MM and Surv, after looking at the chart after my 25 man Uld, I saw my pet doing 320 dps. And yes he is buffed, and trained, its a wolf btw,
TY for the speedy reply.

Shaedon said...

Not sure why a buffed pet would be doing only 320 dps...

I'm guessing you probably have a dps meter like Recount. If you do not have Recount, I suggest you get it, it will help tell you exactly where the other Hunter's damage is coming from compared to yours.

vanilla said...

I do have Recount, R u saying I should get another damage meter???

Also Rotation question?
I start with: Serp, SS,SS, Chim, Aimed, Arcane, SS,SS,SS, Chim. Aimed, Arcane, SS, SS, SS....
ps, I have silencing shot macrod with my Chim and aimed,

So, my question is should i wait as long as possible to refresh with Chim, or do it asap as its of CD? I do have Serp St. glyph.??

Ty for your prompt response.

Anonymous said...

you pet should be doing 14-16% of your total dps if you spec MM

Shaedon said...

As a Marksman Hunter you want to fire Chimera Shot whenever it is off cd always.

Serpent Sting > Chimera Shot > Arcane Shot > Aimed Shot > Steady Shot > Steady Shot...

Then fire Chimera Shot whenever its up, as it is your highest damaging shot by far. Also make sure you have the Chimera glyph, for a nine second Chimera Shot.

Steady Shot is your lowest priority shot (its just a filler shot), always fire Aimed, Arcane or Chimera if available before you turn to Steady Shot.

Macro'ing Silencing Shot with your other shots is the way to go for dealing with Silencing Shot.

Shaedon said...

Oh, and after your first rotation is complete, Rapid Fire should be about over, so I usually use Readiness right after my 2nd Chimera Shot, so I can use Rapid Fire again and Chimera Shot instantly.

It will look something like this...

Chimera Shot - Readiness - Chimera Shot & Rapid Fire

Be very careful of your aggro as a Marksman Hunter, it is very easy to pull aggro in the first 10-20 seconds of a fight if you get some nice Chimera crits.

Recount, by the way, is a great dps meter, so your good with that.

vanilla said...

OK 12- 14% pet damage makes sense, On the Dummy My pet did 240 dps, ( no buffs)
However, yesterday during IC I and my pet did 5100 dps, ( still low, but i can live with it) My pet did 700, and thats consistent with 12-14%.
2. My other question, is you said for rotation to
"Serpent Sting > Chimera Shot > Arcane Shot > Aimed Shot >SS>SS...."

I have it a bit different
Serpent st.
Chimera shot.
Aimed shot.
Arcane Shot.
SS( start over) ...

I was under impression that Aimed did more Damage, then Arcane.( I currently do not have Chimera Glyph, I will get it today before the raid, I will let you know how it effected my numbers)


Shaedon said...

Aimed Shot is affected by armor, while Arcane Shot is not. This pretty much puts Arcane Shot slightly ahead of Aimed Shot in damage, but really... the prioritization of Aimed over Arcane or Arcane over Aimed won't affect your DPS by much.

vanilla said...

OK, Good to know.
I let you know how the Chimera Glyph treats me in raid tonight.

TY , Vanilla

Anonymous said...

Hey Shaedon, great site you've got here.

I was wondering a bit about Armor Pen. Most high level gear has the stat, alot. My recount meter tells me Explosive Shot is 40%+ of my damage. Black Arrow and Serpent Sting is another ~10% together. So half of my damage is magical.

Still the spreadsheet claims that armor pen. gives a ~.7+ dps increase, for all three trees. I don't know what's magical damage and not for MM, but BM dps is mainly from auto shoot and steady shot, which should result in a higher gain from armor pen. should it not?

Shaedon said...

Although Survival might be 50% magical, Marksmanship is probably close to that too. Chimera Shot + Arcane Shot + Wild Quiver + Serpent Sting is probably about 50%.

For BM you would think Armor Pen would be huge... but your pet is half of your damage and does not benefit from Armor Pen yet. And some of your damage from BM comes from Serpent Sting and Arcane Shot. So there is at least 60-65% of your damage as BM that is not affected by Armor Pen.

That is why all three trees benefit similarly from Armor Pen.

Michael said...

I'm really enjoying reading this and am learning a lot. I was just thinking that you should also look at the fact the trap mastery reduces the cool down of the traps to 24 seconds. I find that this makes my rotation very comfortable considering SS lasts for 21 seconds.
This is my rotation Explosive Shot > Multi Shot >Black Arrow >Serpent Sting >Explosive Shot >Steady Shot...
It's a long rotation and I can't remember how it goes further down the chain but eventually I can refresh Black Arrow and Serpent Sting at the same time. I just think it's easier than having to remember to refresh both DoTs at different times during the fight.
You might think that my rotation will yield poor DPS but it's comfortable with the cool downs working out well together.

Michael said...

I just realized I was thinking of the wrong talent. My bad, hawk eye may be preferable over trap mastery.

Coonga said...

So I guess Im a little lost, Which spec is best for raid dps? I checked you out on the armory, and thinking i got the right person, you dont even have survival (now i have no idea what you were doing past couple of days) so is it BM, MM, or SM for raid dps? I have included my Character name, if you have any pointers.

Dont worry about my bm spec it is just there to tame a spirit beast just to have one :) as soon as i find my raid dps spec ill stick with that for PVE and farming.

Shaedon said...

Right now Marks is a bit ahead of Survival as best raid dps. They are pretty close though, so whichever spec you enjoy more you should raid with.

BM is still a little too low, and gets hurt the most when the pet dies or doesn't get boss buffs like the players do.

Anonymous said...


first site i actually learn something plus its a fast and enjoyable read.
i got some questions about pets: which is the best pet for pvp in your opinion? i got a crab atm coz i love its 4 sec stun but it dies realy fast so its a problem obviously. second question: why you prefer cat over wolf? prowl aint helping anyone after all where furious howl gives you ap..

one other question, lots of times my pet will break wyverin sting in pvp. (yes, i am sure my pet breaks it) - is it a bug, and if so, are there any known plans to fix it?

im hearing no complaints about pet bug in Ring of Valor arena neither. the pet just wont move from it starting possition. u got any tips perhaps on how to trick that?
obviously my are pvp questions, but on pve i simply have none:)


Shaedon said...

I have four favorite pets for PvP: Core Hound, Chimaera, Wasp & Worm. As you can see, three of the four require the BM 51 point talent (I mostly run BM in BG's and Arenas). For other specs in PvP I would go with a Spider, as it has slightly better pet talents than a Crab in my opinion (and a ranged hold is better than a melee hold).

For PvE I would go Wolf for any spec.

Not sure about the Wyvern Sting bug. All I know is with the 3.3 changes, Will of the Forsaken breaking Wyvern Sting (since it's a sleep effect) will be much less of an issue.

Pets getting stuck in Ring of Valor is still a big issue and I hear about it pretty frequently. I haven't heard of Blizzard doing anything about it though, or mentioning it at all as a problem.

Anonymous said...


got 2 questions,
1. talent:entrapment – i have 3 points in it and it says that when frost or snake trap is triggered the afflicted target is prevented from moving for 4 sec. i have been testing this for some time now and it doesnt seem to be working..? not worth 3 points is it?

2. i have wing clip/dissengage macro. it works ok, but one problem is that i lose my primary target and second, the timer on it is for wing clip, which only has 6sec cd. so i find myself clicking it when its not even rdy yet. what would be the best way to fix that?

thank you

Anonymous said...

one other thing:)

masters call: whats the req for it to work ffs? my pet is totaly fine, not getting any dmg, not being controled, nothing. and still its ability wont work (ok, maybe 3out of 10 cases its fine). im saying that it wont free me from any stun, root, sap, blind, etc.
it seems that it works properly only when i use it in advance, before stun, root..
you got anything on that?

tnx, mightily appreciated

Shaedon said...

Entrapment should work, but I have heard of it only working for 2 seconds instead of 4 (but that bug might have been fixed).

Wing Clip / Disengage macro is not something I recommend. I used to use it and it seemed like it hardly ever worked the way I wanted it to.

Masters Call will not free you from a stun. But it should work on a roots / movement impairing junk. Your pet has to be within 20 yards of you though (I think).

Anonymous said...

my fix for Ring of Valor.

have yout pet attack a target. then put it on passive. it will unstick and teleport back to you.

to make this seemless i have macroes pet attack to my black arrow and pet passive to flare, this way i dont have to think about it as much.

i use black arrow and flare simply becuase it fits my play style and how my kep binds are set up.

also with masters call. your pet has to have LOS to you

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this helped me a lot for the server I'm currently playing on.