[Hunter] Cataclysm Preview

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[Hunter] Cataclysm Preview

Postby Flex » Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:11 am

With the upcoming World of Warcraft: Cataclysm many game elements will be changing, and each class will be receiving a number of tweaks. Here, we will explore the changes that are being made to the gun-wielding, pet-training hunter. The information you’re about to read is certainly not complete, and is only meant to act as a preview of some of the exciting new things to come. Without further ado, let’s take a look at the new hunter abilities!

New Hunter Abilities

Cobra Shot (level 81): A new shot that deals Nature damage instead of Physical damage. This ability will share a cooldown with Steady Shot. This will give hunters an alternative to Steady Shot on heavily-armored targets, and we will have talent incentives in the Beast Mastery tree to make this a signature shot.

Trap Launcher (level 83): When used, the next trap can be shot to a location within 40 yards. This provides the current Freezing Arrow treatment to all traps and, as a result, we will be removing the current ability Freezing Arrow. 1-minute cooldown. No global cooldown.

Camouflage (level 85): The hunter enters an obscured state that prevents him or her from taking ranged damage. The character would still be subject to melee or area-of-effect attacks, and dealing or taking damage will break the Camouflage effect. The hunter can move and set traps when under Camouflage, and will receive a damage bonus when attacking while under Camouflage (which will then break the effect).

Resource Mechanic Change

Here we come to the meat of the upcoming hunter changes.


* Hunters will no longer use mana; instead the class will use Focus. Focus generates much like Energy, by building up. It will not be affected by Intellect at all. Haste will improve its generation. Hunters will generate roughly 6 Focus per second, slightly less than rogues' Energy generation rate of around 10 Energy per second. Below, we have listed some examples of how we intend Focus costs to operate:

o Steady Shot/Cobra Shot: No cost. Generates 9 Focus per shot (or 12 per second instead of 6).
o Arcane Shot/Chimera Shot /Explosive Shot: 45 Focus.
o Aimed Shot/Multi-Shot: 60 Focus.
o Concussive Shot/Tranquilizing Shot: 35 Focus.
o Rapid Fire/Master’s Call/Disengage: 30 Focus.


Changes to Abilities and Mechanics

In addition to the resource change and new abilities listed above, we intend to make adjustments to some of the other abilities and mechanics you already know well. This list and the summary of talent changes below it are by no means comprehensive, but they should give you a good sense of what we’re going for with each spec.


* A major change coming for the hunter is the removal of ammunition. Guns, bows, and crossbows will now do damage without consuming ammunition at all. There will be no more ammo slot on the hunter’s character display. Any ammunition that a hunter has at the time of the change will become gray sellable items. Existing quivers will be converted into large bags -- though each hunter can only have one and non-hunters will not benefit from this change -- and we will not be making any additional quivers.

* Pet management will also change. Hunters will now have two types of attainable pets: active pets and stored pets. Hunters will be able to have up to three active pets (perhaps five for Beast Mastery specialized players) and will have the ability to switch among these pets any time they are out of combat, without going to town. They will also be able to have a large number of pets in storage at the stables. In order to swap a pet from active to passive, a hunter will still need to visit their local Stable Master. However, this should afford ample storage for the many Spirit Beasts wandering the lands of Azeroth.

* Additionally, hunters will now start with a race-appropriate pet at level 1 and will be able to tame a different pet at level 10. We are also changing many pet family abilities to provide important buffs and debuffs. The intention is to allow the hunter to be able to swap pets and fill a position if a certain role is missing from the group. The goal is to have all pets provide a damage increase that is very similar and no greater than any other pet. Some examples of the changes we are making to the pet families are listed below:

o Wind Serpents: Will provide a debuff that increases the amount of spell damage taken by an enemy (similar to a weaker version of the warlock ability Curse of Elements).
o Ravagers: Will provide a debuff that will increase an enemy's Physical damage vulnerability (similar to a weaker version of the warrior ability Rampage).
o Hyenas: Will provide bleed damage (similar to a weaker version of the druid ability Mangle).

* Stings and other periodic effects will now benefit from haste and critical strike ratings. Hasted damage-over-time abilities do not lose duration, but instead add additional damage ticks.

* Viper Sting will now restore 9 Focus every 3 seconds.

* We are reinforcing hunters as a ranged class. To this end, the class will now start with ranged abilities at level 1, and we will be removing some melee abilities, such as Mongoose Bite.


New Talents and Talent Changes


* Beast Mastery hunters will have a new talent called Careful Aim, which increases the damage of the next Steady Shot or Cobra Shot, but also increases the cast time of these abilities. The intention is to make the combination of spells into a decent damage opener, especially in conjunction with the new ability Camouflage.

* Beast Mastery hunters will also have talents that make Cobra Shot superior to Steady Shot, such as Longevity reducing the cast time of Cobra Shot to 1.5 seconds.

* Rapid Recuperation will cause Rapid Fire to give 20/40/60 Focus immediately and will cause Rapid Killing to generate 3 Focus per second.

* Efficiency will reduce the Focus cost of Chimera Shot, Aimed Shot, and Arcane Shot.

* Thrill of the Hunt grants Focus when you land a critical strike.

* Hunter vs. Wild increases the hunter’s Focus generation when his or her pet is snared, stunned, or rooted.


Mastery Passive Talent Tree Bonuses

Beast Mastery
Ranged Damage
Haste
Pet Damage

Marksmanship
Ranged Damage
Armor Penetration
Double Shot

Survival
Ranged Damage
Ranged Critical Damage
Elemental Damage

Pet Damage: Many of the passive benefits to pet damage will no longer be available in the Beast Mastery talent tree. However, these will be provided through the new Mastery mechanic.

Double Shot: The hunter will have a chance to launch a free attack off of the global cooldown for 50% damage.

Elemental Damage: Hunter abilities such as traps, Black Arrow, and Explosive Shot will do elemental damage of the following types: Arcane, Fire, Frost, Nature, and Shadow.

We hope you enjoyed this preview, and ask that you provide your initial thoughts and feedback on what was presented here. Please keep in mind that what you’ve just reviewed is a work in progress and as we move closer to the Cataclysm beta, you’ll see these planned changes as well as others continue to develop in response to feedback and testing.


It is *not* stealth. Your enemies will never wonder where you are. We're trying to use the new Cataclysm water effect to put a shimmering PREDATORy visual on you. It's protection from ranged attacks and it gives you some combat bonuses, but it's not like Shadowmeld or rogue / druid stealth where players can't find you.

As most of you know, we tried Camo once before, but because it was true stealth it was very hard to balance, plus it felt like we were just handing out the same cool abilities to every class instead of coming with unique mechanics. Hunters were so overwhelmingly excited about the basic idea that we wanted to try it again, but not as stealth.
Last edited by Flex on Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: [Hunter] Cataclysm Preview

Postby Flex » Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:20 am

Rather pedestrian changes but I do not believe hunters are in a broken state and they probably have the smallest delta between their damage specs at the moment. So the bulk of hunter work being focused on focus isn't surprising.
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Re: [Hunter] Cataclysm Preview

Postby bldavis » Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:02 am

im definetly copying my hunter into the ptr if i can, this will be fun/frustrating to learn.

Ghren wrote:Thats why I love playing a paladin! We get to learn a new class every few months!

this is what i am looking forward to, hunters can probably the most changed class, so far anyway, with locks nipping at their heels.


the lack of ammo is interesting.. are they adding the damage buffs directly to the ranged weapons? or will it be a one slot item that will be upgradeable and possibly give extra abilities? (libram-esque)

and the racial pets at 1, finally happening! i hope this will help instill proper hunter tactics into new huntards, and not reinforce bad habits for the first 10 levels. i know after i hit 10 and got my pet, it was prob 3 levels before i got used to kiting and not just beating on them with our melee abilities

does make one wonder what the pets will be...(a wolf for orcs, and worgen? not sure about dwarfs and humans, or trolls and tuaren though)

im also kind of curious to see how the elemental damage plays out... will it be all 4 of them? or just one depending on shot/talents?
if all four, my gm's lock is my new bests friend! Curse of Elements anyone?

edit: i cant type today :(
Last edited by bldavis on Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:07 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: [Hunter] Cataclysm Preview

Postby KysenMurrin » Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:04 am

There won't be a slot item, they specifically said they're removing the ammo slot from the class. They'll just balance Hunter damage to compensate (the "ranged damage" Mastery only has to be slightly stronger than current damage-buff talents to accomplish that).

Other than the change in resources and BM getting a signature shot, looks like nothing much is changing for the Hunter.
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Re: [Hunter] Cataclysm Preview

Postby Passionario » Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:07 am

Quality of life upgrades are still upgrades, I suppose.
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Re: [Hunter] Cataclysm Preview

Postby Grehn|Skipjack » Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:08 am

bldavis wrote:does make one wonder what the pets will be...(a wolf for orcs, and worgen? not sure about dwarfs and humans, or trolls and tuaren though)

Orc: Wolf or Boar
Tauren: Tallstrider
NElf: Cat or Owl
BElf: Cat or Dragonhawk
Dwarf: Bear or Boar
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Re: [Hunter] Cataclysm Preview

Postby bldavis » Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:10 am

KysenMurrin wrote:There won't be a slot item, they specifically said they're removing the ammo slot from the class. They'll just balance Hunter damage to compensate (the "ranged damage" Mastery only has to be slightly stronger than current damage-buff talents to accomplish that).

Other than the change in resources and BM getting a signature shot, looks like nothing much is changing for the Hunter.

thats true i must have skipped over that part..

and the resource change is a big difference... it will change how the hunter classs is played.
with camo and focus, we will be more like ranged rogues instead of the physical casters we are now. :twisted:

Ghren: trolls?
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Brekkie:Tanks are like shitty DPS. And healers are like REALLY distracted DPS
Amirya:Why yes, your penis is longer than his because you hit 30k dps in the first 10 seconds. But guess what? That raid boss has a dick bigger than your ego.
Flex:I don't make mistakes. I execute carefully planned strategic group wipes.
Levie:(in /g) It's weird, I have a collar and I dont know where I got it from, Worgen are kinky!
Levie:Drunk Lev goes and does what he pleases just to annoy sober Lev.
Sagara:You see, you need to *spread* the bun before you insert the hot dog.
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Re: [Hunter] Cataclysm Preview

Postby Flex » Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:14 am

Grehn|Skipjack wrote:
bldavis wrote:does make one wonder what the pets will be...(a wolf for orcs, and worgen? not sure about dwarfs and humans, or trolls and tuaren though)

Orc: Wolf or Boar
Tauren: Tallstrider
NElf: Cat or Owl
BElf: Cat or Dragonhawk
Dwarf: Bear or Boar


Orc: Wolf
Troll: Scorpion
Tauren: Tallstrider
N-Elf: Cat
B-Elf: Dragonhawk
Draenei: Ravager
Human: Boar
Dwarf: Bear

KysenMurrin wrote:Other than the change in resources and BM getting a signature shot, looks like nothing much is changing for the Hunter/


I'm pretty sure everyone is going to underestimate how much the resource change changes the hunter playstyle.
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Re: [Hunter] Cataclysm Preview

Postby Passionario » Fri Apr 09, 2010 11:07 am

Flex wrote:Orc: Wolf
Troll: Scorpion
Tauren: Tallstrider
N-Elf: Cat
B-Elf: Dragonhawk
Draenei: Ravager
Human: Boar
Dwarf: Bear


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Re: [Hunter] Cataclysm Preview

Postby fafhrd » Fri Apr 09, 2010 12:28 pm

Meh. Barely any new info, other than the [irrelevant for pve] 3 spells listed. PvE could either be completely unchanged or completely different depending on the things they haven't explained yet (cooldowns, focus costs, talents, procs, gcd length, relative damage of abilties) - guess we're waiting till beta to find out what the playstyle is actually like.

PvP is still the same mystery as when they first talked about focus for hunters, viz. how hunters are supposed to work when your focus building shot requires you stand still, and your burst damage is lower due to focus instead of mana and higher HP on your targets.
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