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Scattered Shots: So you want to be a Hunter - Part 3 Levels 10-20


Welcome back to the Scattered Shots, So you want to be a Hunter series. This guide is intended to help new Hunters better understand how to play the best class in the game. So join me, Eddie "Brigwyn" Carrington from the Hunting Lodge as we explore the ins and out of how to be a Hunter.

Welcome back my Hunter compadres! We've made it to Part 3 of So you want to be a Hunter. I know we have had lot's of things happening of late with BlizzCon and Cataclysm, so it's probably a good time to give a quick recap on what we've done so far.

Part 1: We reviewed racials and their impact on the Hunter class. Going over each of the factions races and what the benefits were of each racial. For now we haven't talked about the new races that will be added to the Hunter class in Cataclysm (Worgen and Goblins). We'll have to address that when the new expansion is released.

Part 2: We discussed each of the Hunter talent trees and their basic playstyle. We talked about Beast Mastery being the partnership between Hunter and pet. We also reviewed the Marksmanship and Survival trees and how they are more about the individual Hunter, their offensive power, utility and flexibility.

We also discussed what stats you will want to consider as you level. Though this might seem a bit out of place, knowing what to expect early on will hopefully help you make better decisions later on. However you shouldn't worry, we'll make sure to give a refresher course later on.
Now we are in Part 3 of our weekly series. We will continue reviewing leveling your Hunter from level 10-20. We'll talk about taming your first pet. We'll also review some of the more interesting pets and where they can be found. Having a unique is one of the perks of being a Hunter.

We'll also talk about placing those first talent points. Building on the lessons we learned last week. We'll be able to make a decision on how to craft a solid leveling talent build. One that will offer us enough power to down mobs, but also enough bonuses to help protect and keep our pet alive as it plays the role of tank.

As a reminder, here's some guidelines for using this guide.
  • So you want to be a Hunter is for the new player and/or a new Hunter.
  • This guide is not a "How-to get to 80 in less than 3 days" leveling guide. It's more of a "What to expect as you level" guide.
  • Except where highlighted, this guide does not take into account Recruit a Friend or heirloom bonuses.
  • Since most players tend to level by themselves, all talent build suggestions will focus on a solo leveling/grinding build.
  • This guide focuses on the leveling the PvE Hunter. We will discuss PvP and raiding in other guides.
One of the joys of being a Hunter is being able to run around with your best friend right by your side. And believe me, your pet is truly your best friend. I can't tell you the number of times that my turtle FatElvis has charged back and rounded up several elite mobs giving me the crucial few moments I needed to survive. The only drawback to having a pet is you can't tame one until level 10. What's up with that Blizzard?

Level 10

As I mentioned before, when you reach level 10 you finally get to go out and tame your first pet. But you can't just go out and grab the first bear, boar, cat or whatever you see. No way! You need to get trained first.

Your beginning Hunter trainer will send you off on The Hunter's Path quest. You'll be sent out into the world in search of your next trainer and learn how to tame pets. This typically involves some form of go here and tame an animal, bring it back, release it, and repeat 2 more times (Taming the Beast).
Finally, once you've successfully learned those you'll be sent to learn how to train you pet. Well, we don't really need to do that anymore, so think of it as "learn how to take care" of your pet with the Training the Beast quest.

Now you're ready to head out into the wilds and tame your first pet. Personally, I'd recommend you get a Bear or a Boar, but if you check out Petopia you'll find about 30 different pets you can go search out and tame.

Besides learning how to tame pets, level 10 also gives you Aspect of the Hawk which will give you a +20 Attack Power buff. This will be your primary self buff until you get DragonHawk at level 74.

Another learned skill will be Track Humanoids. Now you can track both Beasts and Humanoids helping you finish those pesky, go here find "Mr. Fizlestiks" type quests faster. Also, if you happen to be on a PvP Server, having Track Humanoids up can be a real life saver.

The last big item you get at level 10 is your first talent point. This is often a point of contention with many. Some will have you go the added damage or attack power route of Marksmanship, and some will go for the added distance. I rather buff up my pet's stamina. The reason for this is pretty simple. From this point forward, we get to play our class as it's designed. We have our personal tank taking all the aggro and we get to do the damage from the sidelines. Of course this means we need to buff up our pet's stamina as much as possible. And for that I recommend you place your first talent in Endurance Training.

That's a lot to remember I know so here's a quick wrap up of level 10.

New Hunter Skills

Hunter Talent Allocation
Key Quests
Rare Hunter Pets AvailableLevel 11-12

Since you got so much on level 10 not much really happens until you get to Level 12. The biggest events are probably the infamous Hogger quest for Alliance and the Anok'suten quest for the Horde. Both give nice loot that will last you for a while as you level.

The best thing about finally hitting level 12 is receiving Mend Pet. Being able to heal your pet as you tackle higher level or multiple mobs at one time will make the leveling experience faster and more fun. Especially as you grind through all those eyeless liverless Goretusks.

New Hunter Skills
Hunter Talent Allocations
Quest Chains to ConsiderRare Hunter Pets
Level 13-14

Not much happens during levels 13 and 14. You do learn a few interesting skills that can help you in PvP (Eagle Eye and Eyes of the Beast) and one that helps in PvE (Scare Beast). Otherwise it's continuing leveling up and gathering talent points.

New Hunter Skills
Talent Allocations:
Quest Chain to ConsiderRare Hunter Pets AvailableLevel 15-16

The biggest news at Level 16 is the learning of Aspect of the Cheetah. Being able to increase our movement speed by 30% is a great bonus while running around collecting livers, stingers, tusks, and other savory delights. Just remember, if you get attacked while using Cheetah you will be dazed for 4 seconds reducing your movement speed. Even with this drawback, I'd like to see this given earlier on (maybe level 12?) but I'll take it at Level 16. It just helps make the leveling experience that much faster.

As Alliance you might want to consider your first round of Hunter quests. These start off in Loch Modan at the Farstrider Lodge.

New Hunter Skills
Hunter Talent Allocations
Quest Chains to ConsiderRare Hunter Pets Available

Level 17-20

Nothing big really happens after level 16 until you get to level 20. Courtesy of the mount changes in Patch 3.2 you can get your first mount. Nothing will help improve the leveling experience better, well maybe a bunch of heirlooms and Recruit a Friend but we're not talking about those.

This isn't all that happens during these levels though. At level 18 you'll learn how to Track Undead and get a new attack, Multi-Shot, to do extra damage. Then at level 20 you'll learn Aspect of the Viper. If you couple this with your Tenacity pet and you will never have to worry about mana again as you grind and quest your way to end game. One skill you learn is now bittersweet, Freezing Trap. I say bittersweet because as you level up or go into PvP you learn to love this new skill. However, once you hit endgame you will notice how it quickly becomes another unused skill on your toolbar.

The good news is we also learn Disengage. This is a Hunters new best friend. Use this with some well timed shots and you can kite elites and other mobs all around Azeroth. Also, this will prove to be a great skill to get out of some trouble when being attacked by Rogues, or after recovering from a charging Warrior.

New Hunter Skills

Level 18

Level 20
Hunter Talent Allocations
Quest Chains to Consider
Rare Hunter Pets Available



You want to be a Hunter, eh? Well then you came to the right place. Scattered Shots is the one column dedicated to helping you learn everything it takes to be a Hunter. Each week Scattered Shots will cover topics to help you Fix Your DPS, Choosing the Right Spec, Gear Selection, Macros and Pet Selection, Pet Specs and Management.

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