As you may have heard, Warlords of Draenor will be available for pre-order soon, and with each purchase comes one free level 90 boost. Still wondering which class you should use your boost on? I'm here to make your decision a whole lot easier. Here are 10 reasons why you should use your level 90 boost on a hunter.
1. Feign death
Hunters only die if we choose to die. Feign Death makes a hunter's repair bill is a mere fraction of what it would normally be. It's not just about repair bills though, it's about being able to avoid fighting things you don't want to fight. It's about avoiding corpse runs. And you would be surprised how often it fools people in PvP. Other classes are jealous of Feign Death, but they put up with it because we can mass resurrect to save them a corpse run. I put this at number one because it is, without a doubt, my favorite hunter ability. On second thought, it's probably tied with number three on the list. It's really hard to choose.
Tracking is one of those things you didn't know you needed until you finally use it. Being able to track players in PvP gives you a huge advantage. Outside of a pesky rogue, no one is going to be sneaking up on you (we have Flare for the rogues anyway), and you'll know exactly how many enemies are guarding an objective in a battleground without having to risk exposure. On the PvE front, it's really helpful for kill quests as you can track any type of NPC, not just humanoids. The downside? You'll be missing it whenever you go back to your other classes.
3. Hunter parkour
Disengage has been around for a while, but it's only been a few months where we've been able to use it out of combat. This change in patch 5.4 made it one of the best abilities in the game. Period. Once you master the jump-disengage (that is, jumping, spinning around mid-air and then disengaging to move forward) you will be able to cover great distances in a hurry. Plus, when you're bored you can equip the Glyph of Disengage and do some hunter parkour. Also, did you know that disengaging will let you survive a fall which would otherwise kill you?
4. Hunters can tame dinosaurs and raid bosses
Did you know that hunters have approximately 600 unique looking pet skins available for taming? And that you can tame 55 of them at any one time? Other classes have pets, but they don't get to choose from nearly any beast in the world, give them clever names, or have them dance. Hunting for and taming pets is a game unto itself with all of the challenge tames, rare spawns, and track hunting. I've been playing a hunter for over 9 years and I still have pets I want to tame. Pets have 3 specs which can be changed on the fly at any time: ferocity (typically used for PvE DPS), tenacity (pet tanking, extreme soloing), and cunning (PvP). Pets bring unique buffs based on their family, allowing hunters to bring any of the important buffs to their group. Casters love us for our sporebats affectionately named Spellhaste, and 10-player teams without a mage or shaman love us for our core hounds. Some of our pets have interesting abilities like Spirit Mend or Surface Trot to aid us in our solo adventures.
5. Femaledwarf.com and Petopia
Zeherah's Hunter DPS Analyzer at www.femaledwarf.com is a tool made just for hunters. It helps us optimize our gear, shot priorities, and talent choices. Wonder how much DPS you could gain or lose by swapping a particular piece of gear or changing a talent? By importing your character from the armory, you can find out for yourself in a few clicks. There are sites out there like Ask Mr. Robot which help you with some of this, but this tool is for hunters only. Its creator, Zeherah, keeps it well maintained and up to date with new gear and class changes. She's pretty awesome for keeping it going for so many years. While we're on the subject of hunter-specific sites, Petopia is the other one which should be at the top of your bookmark list.
6. Hunters are solo champions
Ever dreamed of soloing Zandalari Warbringers with ease, regardless of item level? What about pulling a dozen max level mobs at once and having your pet hold aggro on all of them? Rare mount farming? No problem. Current-level heroic dungeons and raids from a previous expansion are both things that hunters can solo. Spirit Mend and Spirit Bond help keep hunters alive during unavoidable damage while our pets take all of the real hits. Pets can spec into tenacity which gives them extra survivability and healing. If you're interested in extreme soloing, be sure to check out both Caribald and Durendil's Youtube channels to see what hunters are capable of at the highest levels of solo play.
7. Hunters can do everything on the move
All hunter DPS abilities can be used while moving without any penalty. We're the only ranged class that can do this. This makes movement heavy boss fights our specialty, and the benefits in PvP should be plainly obvious. Get yourself a Goblin Glider and you'll be able to perform hunter strafing runs -- I do it every week after jumping off the tower in the Galakras encounter. If it's not obvious at this point, one of your professions should definitely be engineering.
8. Hunters dominate in battlegrounds
If battlegrounds are your thing, you will love playing a hunter. Arena representation can fluctuate from season to season, but hunters have always excelled in large group PvP combat. If you've ever been on the receiving end of a hunter then you know how annoying we can be. Does this scenario sound familiar? A big red pet blinks in out of nowhere, but where's the hunter? Oh there she is, 40 yards away, shooting you from behind that hill. Hunters are tough to deal with when there's a battle happening around you. When it comes to guarding flag rooms and returning flags, I believe there's no class better than a hunter for the job.
9. Hunters are the best at leveling
This one may be counter-intuitive since you're skipping 90 levels, but when Warlords is released you'll really appreciate having a hunter to level. Our personal pet tank allows us to kill things faster by pulling more mobs than a pet-less class would be able to handle. We can also complete group quests by ourselves. When a quest says "four players suggested" you'll usually have no problem completing that by yourself. Hunters have Camouflage to sneak past enemies they don't want to bother with (and it can even be glyphed to give full stealth). If you're on a PvP server, hunters have a variety of tools to escape or completely avoid attempted gankings. As I said before, hunters die when they choose to die.
10. Hunters are getting even better in Warlords of Draenor
If there's been one complaint about hunter specializations, it's that all 3 of them play pretty similarly (especially beast mastery and survival). Blizzard is addressing this in Warlords, and without overhauling the class, is promising some better spec differentiation. Our proposed level 100 talents also look pretty interesting, especially With or Without You which provides a pet-less option for marksmanship and survival hunters. Pets are still going to be integral for hunters, but it will be an option for those who don't like managing their pet in group content. The other complaint often leveled at the hunter class is button bloat, but it is also getting looked at for the future. Hunters are likely going to be better than ever in Warlords, so why not get on the train a little early?
Reasons to not play a hunter
A hunter may not be for everyone. If you have an inherent dislike of pet classes, or any of the following applies to you, then I hate to say it but a hunter may not be the best choice for you:
1. You prefer being one of the 10 hunter support classes (we sincerely appreciate it).
2. You only play gnomes.
3. You enjoy paying higher repair bills.
4. You strongly dislike the idea of having a personal tank.
5. You've never wanted to tame your very own Ghostcrawler.
For everyone else, I hope I've convinced you to join the ranks of the hunter class.
Scattered Shots is dedicated to helping you learn everything it takes to be a hunter. From raiding tips and hunter addons to learning the DPS value of skill, we've got you covered. If you're stuck in one of the ten support classes, why not move up to the big league and play a hunter?