I talked about what abilities I thought could be eliminated from the Resto Druid kit last week, and now it’s time to talk hunters.
As I looked through my spellbook for all three specs last night, it struck me that I was fine with the hunter’s basic rotational abilities. I wouldn’t get rid of any of the basic 7-8 shots used by each spec. There are not too many. If anything, some new shot or mechanic could be added to spice things up a little bit. Where hunters feel bloated is in our cooldowns and situational abilities.
There are a whole bunch of abilities that could be removed or streamlined to make hunters feel more fluid, and possibly make room for other, more interesting abilities.
These used to be a lot more interesting back when we had Aspect of Nature and Aspect of the Viper. We needed to make a meaningful choice for what aspect we were in and would often switch a few times during fights. Now there really is no choice and these abilities seem unnecessary.
Aspect of the Hawk/Ironhawk should be passive, or just removed. There’s really no reason we should ever have to reapply it. Right now it only serves as an annoyance to have to make sure to put it back on after switching specs.
Aspect of the Cheetah/Pack we could probably live without. Having a whole aspect bar just for these two things seems silly, if AotH is removed. Perhaps we could get an ability like Stampeding Roar as a replacement. That would actually be really nice, even without a root/snare break.
Trap use has gone down a lot since previous expansions and they’re clunky to use compared to other abilities. The only real positive traps have is being able to place them before a pull, but even that only gives a marginal increase in damage.
As far as a I know, Survival is really the only spec that gets any use out of Explosive Trap. In order to be worthwhile, there needs to be a certain number of enemies and they need to stay still within the area of effect. I’d be more than happy to have this taken away.
Likewise, Snake Trap has very little use in PVE. I remember there used to be some cool uses for it, when snakes could be targeted by boss abilities and save your raid some damage, but I don’t think that’s the case anymore.
The PVP implications of this might be too big, but I’d also love to see Freezing Trap and Ice Trap combined into a single ability. The first hostile mob to hit the trap would be frozen. If the trap gets broken, or the mob is immune, the Ice Trap effect would show up.
Trap Launcher should be removed and made baseline.
Rapid Fire and Focus Fire are very similar abilities which increase haste and I see no reason for both to exist. One could be removed, or they could be combined into one. The pet haste effect from Rabid could also be combined into this.
This one may be a bit more controversial, but I’d love to never be asked to Misdirect again. With all the changes to tank threat and ranged taunts, it really shouldn’t be necessary (and whatever happened to “wait 3 seconds before you attack the boss?”). Of course, MD is most useful in directing stray/spawning mobs to the tank, but our ability to do this marginal at best. As BM especially, my misdirect can’t out-threat much of anything.
Hunter’s Mark seems unnecessary at this point. We don’t really even need to cast it anymore since its application is baked into basic shots. The tracking component is useful for PVP, but I’d rather it become a situational spell used for the tracking and have the damage buff component removed.
These spells don’t impact much and the only reason to keep them would be nostalgia.
I can’t remember the last time I used Beast Lore. Since pets have been normalized, and don’t need to be fed, there’s not much point.
I didn’t even remember hunters had Eagle Eye until I was browsing through my spell book. I wouldn’t miss it.
Well, that’s 13 abilities I think could safely be removed from Hunters. That’s a lot. It seems that there are a lot of opportunities to streamline our toolkit.
What do you think? What Hunter abilities would you like to see removed? Are there any you wouldn’t want to lose?
Ashunera has written another well-thought out piece about ability bloat, and wants to know what 5 abilities you’d prune from your class. You should check it out.