WoW - how best to re-spec my hunter?

I have a Lvl 33 NE Hunter (I know, I know) that I haven’t played in about a year. I haven’t played WoW at all in about 4 months. I just resubbed again and noticed that my hunter was given a free respec.

What’s a good way to rebuild my long-forgotten hunter? I’ll mostly solo him. I remember using my kitty pretty heavily while I picked off the baddies with my phat blunderbuss. I just can’t handle wading through the official WoW forums to find the occasional good bit of information.

If you like using your pet, then go at least 31 points in Beastmastery to get the final talent, because it’s utterly evil and overpowered and oh dear god casters hate you. Take any extras you want from that tree then dump the rest of the points in Marksmanship.

Survival tree is still the weakest if you ask me, but that’s just from looking at it - not used it much myself.

Yes, it’s pretty much a choice between mainly Marksmanship or mainly Beast Mastery. You might want to put 10 points in Defelction and Improved Wingclip if you intend doing much PVP.

While leveling, BM is nice to spec. The better your pet, the easier it is to level.

At 60 it’s a different game, doing instances in which the pet just isn’t that helpful and doing PvP in which it’s harder to rely on the pet. Personally, I want my hunter’s DPS to be as high as possible at 60, so I put all my points into MM and Survival. The real question is do you go all the way down the MM tree and take trueshot aura or do you stop somewhere after 21 points and scattershot? I’m leaning toward an 0/31/20 build, but a 0/30/21 build could be nice too. The latter gives me counterattack in Survival and sacrifices trueshot aura.

I know some hunters like a 0/21/30 build also, which gives you the full agility bonus from talents and maximizes your crit chances. The trueshot aura build maximizes your ranged attack power and damage.

And yes, BM builds still work at 60. The bestial wrath 31 point talent is tons of fun. Too many classes have learned how to counter it though. Mages blink away, mana shield, and do the ice cube thing to avoid the enraged pet. Druids go into bear form and just absorb the damage. Pallys and priests shield. Warriors just absorb the damage too. Warlocks and rogues are probably the most vulnerable to the pet. They don’t have many ways of mitigating the damage - rogues can sprint and hit evasion and warlocks can lifetap, but that’s about it and neither is surefire.

Sounds like Beast Mastery is the way to go for now. One more question: if I also want to end up with some points in Marksmanship and max out Beast Mastery should I try to split points between the two or max BM first then add some to Marksmanship?

What I did was this: I levelled using marks until somewhere around 35 or so, then respecced to full beastmaster, eventually going to 31 beast and putting the rest into marks.

5 points into efficiency (first tier marks) is a must. If you don’t mind waiting until lvl 45 to get Bestial Wrath, I would buy that first, as it means you can go longer between sitting on your ass and drinking.

I was BM for awhile at 60, but I ended up changing my spec to 31/20 Marksman/Survival. Bestial Wrath was fun to torment casters, but with its upcoming nerf I decided to follow every other PvP hunter in the guild and drop BM. I haven’t had any regrets yet. :)

I really like that 2% to health talent in survival. Each level of that is like a +20 stamina enchant, at least. In PVP and boss encounters, stamina is key. It doesn’t matter what your crit% is if you’re out of hitpoints.

Max one side or the other. Actually I think you can have your cake and eat it too with hunters now. You can get full BM (with bestial wrath) and get most of the good stuff from marksman, (increased crits, increased range, aimed shot, etc). The only two things you will not be able to afford is concussion shot (good for PvP) and true-shot aura which I think is totally overrated anyway.

My advice would be to go with BM to level up. Once you are 60, if you want to favor battlegrounds, a BM-favord BM/MM build would do great for PvP. If you want to raid, then marksmen is proabbly a good primary tree.

I’ve taken the advice and basically put all my points into Beast Mastery. I ventured into Stranglethorn Vale and proceeded to completely tear the place up. I was easily taking out level 36 crocolisks while still at lvl 33 and I really think I could have taken a lvl 37 if I’d seen one. This is the same area that used to kick my ass and eventually caused me to stop playing this character and go Horde.

Either I’ve gotten better or BM is definitely the way to go. Have hunters always been this powerful and maybe I just sucked?

Well, I’ve been levelling my hunter ever since the “hunter patch” and have always been able to solo mobs that are 4-5 levels above me (and yes, I’ve gone BM). Hunters definitely got a boost, and the pets with their new abilities can easily have obscene health + armour for their level.

Hmm? What new abilities are there for pets? I assume you don’t mean Claw and Cower and stuff like that?

Go to the pet trainer. There are new skills you can learn there besides Growl. You can improve the health, armor and resists of your pets now. There are also other new skills that are pet type dependent.

This site is a good resource for pets and their capabilities.

Go see the pet trainer. He’ll show you stuff like “Natural Armor”, “Great Stamina”, etc etc. That’s what you spend all those points on when your pet increases loyalty :)

If you go full into the beast mastery tree, you can get a talent that lets your pet stun opponents for 3 seconds. It’s like concussion shot, but it works at ANY range.

Also, it stuns every time it connects, as opposed to conc shot which maxes out at a 20% chance.

Actually most pet skills are not learned from the pet trainer, but by training different beasts, learning it from them and then teaching your regular pet.

Which beasts teach what can be found at:

Right, my explanation was unclear, thanks vicodin! I can see where I thought to mention that you had to tame to get the new skills, since I mentioned petopia, it just never made it from my brain to my fingers :)

Here’s a surprisingly good write-up of Hunter talents: