The newest World of Warcraft expansion, Dragonflight, is currently in alpha testing. As with most MMORPG testing phases, it behaves not unlike a house of cards. Tweak one ability, and suddenly the whole class is broken.
While not quite in broken territory yet, Hunters have already had a plethora of changes announced recently, but it looks like they’re set for a boatload more. Blizzard game designer Nimox announced a full list, which you can find here on the Blizzard forums. But for those less inclined to wade through swathes of text, we’ll summarise some of the most interesting developments below.
For the core class abilities and talents, we have a buff for Mend Pet, from a 35% heal to 50%. In addition, Improved Exhilaration has been folded into the Exhilaration ability and has been replaced with the talent Rejuvenating Winds. Viper’s Venom, a single target proc, has also been replaced with Hydra’s Bite, a multi-target proc.
Over in Beast Mastery, Dire Pack has received a redesign. Instead of causing summoning Dire Beasts to increase the damage of Steady and Multi Shot, they instead reset the cooldown of Kill Command, and reduce its cooldown and cost for a time. They’re also adding a new talent which buffs Dire Beast summons in general.
Marksmanship is receiving a fair number of renames and redesigns. Salvo has been renamed to Bombardment, and now causes Arcane Shots to buff your next Multi-Shot. Explosive Ricochet is now Salvo, and allows your Multi-Shot to shoot Explosive Shots every 45 seconds. Finally, Killer Ricochet is now Razor Fragments, previously a Shadowlands covenant ability, and causes your Kill Shots to inflict bleed on nearby targets after Trick Shots fades. In addition to these redesigns, the values of Steady Focus have been halved, and Bursting Shot and Quick Load are no longer dependencies.
Survival has a load of new talents, and has had a batch of skills reduced from 2/3 total points to 1/2. The new talents are Ranger, which buffs a range of different baseline abilities; Intense Focus, which buffs Kill Command; and Ruthless Marauder, which buffs Fury of the Eagle. Terms of Engagement and Improved Harpoon are combined into a single talent. Frenzy Strikes now applies to Flanking Strike, and Viper’s Venom is now in the Survival tree with a redesign – Raptor Strike and Mongoose Bite can apply Serpent Sting to your target.
For more Dragonflight class changes, check out our summary of some of the datamined class changes in the latest alpha build. Alternatively, prepare to go back to the future with the leaked Wrath of the Lich King Classic release date.