So my second day of full Survival was not particularly exciting, although I was pleased to wake up and find all sorts of helpful hints and the like left in comments on my blog (and really has me wanting to make a “What hunter spec are you?” poll, just for curiosity’s sake, since it seems a good deal of you actually are not BM!)
I did enough dailies to learn that my pet can hold aggro just fine if I let him chew on the mob for five seconds or so before I open up. I’m just so used to BM where I can basically start shooting the second I send my pet in. (Now to be fair, I do usually have to be in Aspect of the Beast even as BM or else I’ll pull, but hey.) Once I figured this out, solo’ing became much better than it was yesterday especially because I never dipped below about 80% mana. Ever. My inner mana-starved Beast Master kinda wanted to cry about it, I’ll admit.
I got into a quick Heroic Azjol’Nerub, and then a Heroic Violet Hold later on. I kept Recount open and set to “Show Current Fight” for each. My reaction to the resulting numbers was extremely variable, bouncing anywhere between “Gosh, this isn’t nearly as good as my BM numbers” to “Why am I getting Patchwerk numbers in a five-man?” The vast majority of my reactions were firmly in the middle, though– the “I am doing about the same amount of DPS” camp. All it took, though, was a good solid string of crits to push me back closer to 10man Patchwerk territory.
I have discovered that where Beast Master is all about mobility with things like Kindred Spirits, Survival and Sniper Training lean much more towards stillness. It’s sort of a new style of playing that I’m still trying to get used to. See, I love running around while fighting. It’s especially bad on my druid because all I ever cast are HoTs so I’ll run circles around the boss, jumping frantically up and down and twirling around while I toss Lifeblooms and Wild Growths around. While I’m not quite to that point with my hunter (thanks to the whole you-gotta-stand-still-to-shoot-anyway thing), I still enjoy mobility and I strafe around a lot, so learning to suppress that has been kinda difficult.
The day ended with pounding away on training dummies. Again, the numbers I wound up with were extremely varied. At best, I was getting about 400 DPS more than I do as BM, and at worst, about 100 less. The majority of my experiments placed me about 150ish DPS more than BM with no outside buffs. Honestly I don’t know if that’s good or not; I have no idea how much this Fabled Big Survival DPS Increase is supposed to be. ANYWAYS, as far as I am aware, I am using the correct glyphs, spec, and shot priority– juggling my two DoTs (Black Arrow and Serpent Sting) and then Kill Shot -> Explosive Shot -> Aimed Shot -> Steady Shot, as well as having to shake things up with the occasional Lock & Load procs. The Survival rotation is rather complex, but I’m pretty sure I had it down. It really does feel like a Boomkin on Speed (I am allowed to say this because nobody wants Trees in Violet Hold, they all want Priests for some reason which I’ve yet to ascertain. So I’ve spent a lot of time in the chicken suit lately when I play my druid.)
Honestly the biggest thing I noticed from my tests was that I can do 180,000 damage before running out of mana as Beast Master, and 260,000 before running out of mana as Survival. Similar DPS, but huge difference in overall net damage done.
Regardless, I am only two days into the Grand Experiment, so we’ll see how things continue to go…