Can I Has DPS?

Okay, now that I have talked about my “emotional” investment into Beast Mastery in my last post, let us talk about another awesome component of the spec: Dee Pee Ess. Most people know that the Holy Church of Fortyone Twenty was the way to Hunter DPS Heaven in Burning Crusade; but by the looks of things the Reformation is happening in Wrath of the Lich King and we will see a lot more specs running around in raids. This strikes me as a Very Good Thing because I don’t like to see people spec something that they do not like. That was sort of one of the points I was trying to make (and I think I didn’t do a very good job at it, so sorry <3 ) in my last post. I want people to spec the way they enjoy the most. But I know there are at least a few of you crazy nutcases out there who love BM for its playstyle, like I do, who are maybe curious about new shot rotations in the like. Never fear, Pike is here!

Tawyn has spent probably close to a hundred gold on respecs since the patch hit; she started with a very deep BM build and slowly has been drifting to a lighter one, moving to 51/10/0 and now sitting at 48/13/0. The reason for the talent shakeup was threefold: firstly, I wanted to pick up Animal Handler now that it’s going to be useful again in the next patch (I am so down for extra pet expertise). Secondly, Deep BM at 70 was feeling very… top-heavy, for lack of a better term. Too much in BM, too fast. And Invigoration and Cobra Strikes are both kinda “iffy” to me right now in terms of the proc rate and “worth it” value– which saddens me, cause I love their synthesis concept, but sometimes the truth hurts. Thirdly, I have come to the conclusion that Go for the Throat is a Super Vital Talent™ and it is worth it to sacrifice the Exotic Pet and four extra pet talent points to pick it up. You can always go back and pick up the Exotic Pet talent later on once you get closer to 80.

Lunapike is still 46/15/0, which is very similar, but a little different. Points in Focused Aim, for example, because she is not hit-capped, and she is testing Invigoration at the moment whereas Tawyn is testing Cobra Strikes, so those talents are switched.

ANYWAYS, I was getting really curious about the performance of these specs so I downloaded Recount, spent approximately four seconds deciding that I liked it better than SW Stats, and headed off to visit our friends the Training Dummies.

With some 1900 AP and 25.29% crit and unbuffed (Except for stuff like Aspect of the Hawk/Ferocious Inspiration), and having popped all her cooldowns and trinkets over the duration of the test, which lasted until I was out of mana, Tawyn hit about 1180 DPS at her peak and consistently maintained 1050+ DPS using Steady Shot and keeping Serpent Sting refreshed (because Serpent Sting is supposed to be viable now =P). Not too shabby. I’m satisfied. I’d like to make a comparison to pre-patch DPS but I honestly never paid attention to anything beyond where I sat on the chart (does that make me a good or bad hunter?)

This is not an entirely 100% accurate breakdown because I took this screenshot after a Viper cycle to replenish my mana. Still, it can give you a general idea of what the DPS will look like after one full round of DPS and the full round of Viper, and it also gives you an idea of what Locke is doing in terms of damage. And looking back, I’m thinking I was a little slow on the uptake with Serpent Sting once or twice. Derp.

My testing was not finished though, oh no!

Now Lunapike is obviously at a disadvantage here and I wasn’t out to make a real comparison exactly for this reason. She only has roughly 1450 AP (with Aspect of the Hawk) and 22.35% crit. However, I mostly wanted to see the wasp stats, and also see if Invigoration was going to be making a big difference. The verdict? …it procs often enough, but… I dunno, it lets me do what, get maybe three more Steadys in before I switch to Viper? Dunno if it’s worth it for the two points or not. More testing will have to be done.

This screenshot was actually taken right before switching to Aspect of the Viper so I wound up with 884 DPS as an unbuffed hunter in semi-enchanted blues. Again, I am satisfied. Now, let’s discuss the pets; Serenity the wasp and Locke the Kitty are almost identical in terms of the stat breakdown (Roughly 60% regular melee, 30% focus dump, and 10% DoT/special ability.) The big difference I see is that Serenity brings a big whoppin’ armor debuff with him whereas Locke doesn’t. I think that this is gonna be one of the things that makes a difference when it comes to which pets you will see more often in raids. And of course, things will get all the more interesting when we throw Exotic Pets into the picture, with their intended upcoming buff and their extra talent points.

And the moral of the story is: Beast Masters, Steady Shot and Serpent Sting is looking like your rotation for the time being, unless I totally botched up somewhere (in which case, please tell me ^_^). Although I would still call Serpent Sting situational; depending on if Scorpid Sting might be preferred or if there might be emergency trapping in the forseeable future.

The second moral of the story is… next time, remind me to do my testing on Beta where respecs only cost 1 copper. Cause next up I think I wanna do the Go for the Throat vs. Exotic Pet/extra points Showdown. But I’m not willing to throw more gold into it. I’m just a poor Pike from a poor family.

21 thoughts on “Can I Has DPS?”

  1. Too bad Sting is a situational raid buff, since it has same effect and doesn’t stack with Druid’s faerie fire and Warlocks’ Curse of Recklessness, so it will only be useful if neither of those classes can’t for some reasons keep one of their debuffs up.

  2. Serpent Sting will likely be up whenever a hunter is on a raid now, between Chimera Shot, Glyph of Steady Shot and Lock and Load. Blizzard clearly WANTS it used more than it was in the second half of TBC. (Aimed Shot, too, but that’s a subject for a Marksmanship blog.)

    For stuff that needs trapping, no, but one rarely reaches maximum potential DPS on trash anyway, even before the patch.

  3. Still playing with specs and such myself, thanks for the breakdown.

    I do have one question for you though.

    More so now that we have the target dummies to actually work out things on a good data collection tool would help immensley. I found Recount as a download on curse and grabbed it, now I seem to be all confuzzled on how to make it work.

    If you know of a guide somewhere that shows how to set it up I would appreciate a link, if not perhaps you could write something up? /puppydogeyes

  4. Can I ask a question about Tawyn’s current build please – what were the reasons why you put only 1 point in Endurance Training and passed over Thick Hide? Is it because this is a raiding build rather than a PvE Solo build?

    In addition, I would really like to hear how you spent your pet’s talent points too – maybe a Blog on Pet Talents is in the pipeline (or should that be Pikeline?)

  5. @ Rilgon – Volley is AWESOME.

    @ Dechion – I’m still trying to figure out all of Recount’s goodies myself, but I will see what I can do.

    @ Steadfast – Yes, Tawyn’s build is a raiding build. If it were a leveling/solo build I would have given her five points in Endurance Training and Two points in Thick Hide, and possibly Spirit Bond over Animal Handler.

  6. I dunno, I’ve got 51 points in BM and the rest in MM at the moment, on my hunters who are 70. I went and did Karazhan and ZA in one evening on my tauren hunter, we cleared both places in about three hours (including a half hour break between instances) and I clocked over 1000 dps the whole time. And that’s with my guy who would have been barely considered ready to start Karazhan and grotesquely undergeared for ZA just two weeks ago. I’m going to SSC tonight with Avaric, who has Tier 5/6 gear, just to see what it’s like.

    Plus, I’m dying to see what my brand new MC core hound will look like standing on Vashj’s lifeless body. 🙂

  7. I chose to skip exotic pets on Wulfa for now and go deeper into the MM tree for aimed shot (can’t remember the numbers). Currently my rotation against regular mobs is arcane shot, aimed shot, and they’re dead. If not, a steady shot usually finishes them off. Haven’t had a chance to do an instance with her since the patch so no idea what I’ll be doing in a party/raid situation. I’m interested in what keeping serpent sting up will be like ….. My other hunter did go deep into the BM and tree and has a devilsaur. She’s only lvl 63 so I can’t really compare the two, but I’m happy so far.

  8. Woot, testing FTW! I’ve been doing it myself lately. BTW – what’s that mod that shows what spell does what damage? I kinda wanna pick that up.

    Definitely keep up the Serpent sting – I agree that it’s the direction Blizzard is going. They want you to keep one sting on the target at all times, and now they’re at least making it worthwhile.

    For a while, I was pretty miffed at all the Devilsaurs stomping around. I thought, “OMG so lame, they don’t even care about the pet” and then my guildie Skorp got a white one. I raided with him last night, and I swear all I saw was “Skorpo gently pats Squig”, “Skorpo loves Squig”, “Skorpo blows a kiss to Squig”….and then all he said was, “Squig this, Squig that, don’t call Squig fat!”

    So now I’m grudgingly okay with the Devilsaurs, at least with Skorpo’s. =)

  9. @ Avaric and Wulfa – definitely go with what works best for you!

    @ Nassira – I actually really like the devilsaurs, I think they’re adorable. I kind of want to wait for the hype to die down before I snag one, though– besides, I’m loving my current pets.

  10. Nice post Pike!

    I recently switch to 10/51 spec after being BM for the entire time I was leveling, and in no epics at all placed 3rd on the DPS charts, with 1200 dps, 950 sustained, I do fluctuate a bit more with this build, in some fights Ill pull 700 in others I’ll pull numbers similar to Mags. Like you I hate to see people spec into something they don’t like, and I’m so excited to see more variation in raids now since they buffed the other tree’s.

    I love reading ur posts, look every morning, and keep checking all day for new ones.


  11. COMPLETELY off-topic, but I found my way over here via BBB and I just wanted to say hi to a fellow VeCo’er.

    I have a druid Dysheki, though not of the moo-cow kind 😉 I’ll make sure to be nice if I see you; most Tauren are good in my book unless they show hostility.

    VeCo is 4 fite ^_^

  12. Fantastic post – thanks for taking the time to do the test. I’ve been meaning to do something similar myself. I’m currently 51/10/0 and have been debating dropping a few more points in MM to pick up Go for the Throat. I’ve tried a couple exotics but I currently prefer the old and trustworthy beasts by my side…

  13. Currently at 70 I’m using a 51/10 build as I did want to try out exotic pets. Personally I’m quite happy with a Devilsaur for PvE and happy with a Chimera for PvP. I’m not sure it’s the best dps overall but fully raid buffed lately I do anyway from 1200 to 1400 dps.

    Not sure I quite agree with the spec for max dps for a few things. One, if you aren’t going for Aimed Shot I’d fill out Carefull Aim put 2 points in Mortal Shots so you can get Go for the Throat. The reason being that Mortal Shots only affects ranged abilities and not auto-shots anymore. Careful Aim will get you more damage overall now since the BM standard is still going to be mostly steady shot with a few serpent stings thrown in. Second, Animal Handler even with the change is not worth it. As currently 10 expertise rating that it gives doesn’t even provide 1% expertise at level 70 and I’m sure it will be even lower at 80. If master’s call ends up being needed alot then I say go for this but until that is known for sure Animal Handler still doesn’t seem worth it. With removing that though you’ll need to put at least a point into spirit bond and you have one point you mess with. Which means you could keep all the points in Mortal Strikes and take Aimed Shot for now.

  14. Oh man, I didn’t realize Mortal Shots didn’t work on autoshot any more. Crap, that means I’ll have to dump it. That’s good though, at least I can get GFTT back, I’ve been missing that.

  15. Thanks for the informative post, Pike. We definately need more research into the new shot rotations. At this point, it just flat doesn’t matter since the raid bosses have been nerfed so much, but its still nice to know for the few weeks we have left how to squeeze the most raid dps we can.

  16. I’m currently running a 44/17/0 spec and tested a 50/11/0 as well. Both specs seemed to deliver the same amount of damage over a 3 min time frame. Some of my guildmates run 50/11 and we were doing comparable amounts of damage. However in the fights we can’t use pets (Azgalor for example) I was running at least 100dps over them. Another thought that needs to be considered is pet specs do make a large difference now. However as Gibster mentioned in a few weeks all our decisions will be moot. I for one am just loving all the new content that is feasible for my guild to run now =D

  17. Nice post Pike, but me and a few other hunters that I know (one in sunwell) have trashed our old 1:1 rotations as its useless now with the changes to steady shot, and went with a 3:1 type dealo. Which is, steady, arcane, multi-repeat. With of course auto beween. I assume, if given actual cc near by, you can switch multi with serpent to keep up the missing dps, but I have yet to try yet. (The one ZA i tested this in there was no CC, so I maintained a 1600 dps cycle without my pet because of it). You might want to try that. The old Marksman rotation is apparantly very useful for us now.

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