Sunday, October 19, 2008

Hunter Explosive Shot Feedback:


Explosive shot seems to have been over-nerfed, simply because it was (like many other talents introduced this expansion) trying to do too many cool things at once, and was summarily nerfed pretty badly.

I don't really see how it was balanced to have an arcane shot that ticked in an AOE that did 3x the damage of arcane shot per GCD used. It was high damage move that could be used completely on the move. The result? It obviously got nerfed.

I think that the main issue with explosive shot, from my perspective, is that it was trying to replace the wrong skill to give hunters that big damage boost. Hunters already have mobile damage. Since when do they need (massive) mobile AOE damage? And if they do (for pve), how is big mobile AOE damage balanced for PVP? It would be like giving mages instant cast targetable flame strikes and arcane explosions. The answer: It isn't, and wasn't. The result? Now you have a weak damage component, but keep the mobility factor as an instant shot.

Instead, I see myself wanting explosive shot to do nice, big damage, but at a cost: Mobility. Why isn't explosive shot a replacement for steady shot instead? Reinstate it's damage, but give it a cast time, not much different from having to cast shadowbolts and fireballs. If it had a cast time, the devs could afford to bump it's damage back up quite considerably, as well as sever the shared cooldown between it and arcane shot.

Chew on that in your mind and try to visualize how that would play out.


Kenny said...

Explosive shot was too heavily nerfed. However, it's still better than arcane in pve. Where it's garbage is in pvp.

I can't see adding a cast time and boosting its damage as a solution though. I mean one of the core problems for hunters in pvp is lack of mobility, taking away mobility on this shot will only make things worse. I'd rather see it fixed by removing the AOE component and rolling the damage pulses into two, which would make it bursty again without being over the top. If survival still lags in pve damage, perhaps buffing Master Tactician or one of the half-dozen weaker talents deep in the tree could solve that. Unlinking explosive from arcane's cooldown needs to happen too. Marks gets chimera and arcane on the move, survival needs the same treatment.

In pvp I still think the core problem for the class is auto-shot. Hunters are the only class with an auto-attack who can't take advantage of that auto-attack while moving. Hunter instants don't hit hard enough to threaten anyone because they are balanced around the mistaken assumption that they will be landing lots of auto-shots.

There are two ways to solve this that I can see. The first (and most obvious) is to allow auto-shot to fire on the move, bringing it in line with every other auto-attack in the game. The other is to eliminate auto-shot altogether and significantly increase the burst of specials. Either of these changes would need to be accompanied by removing the minimum range on shots and eliminating hunter melee attacks other than wing clip.

Add in a means of removing snares and a way to live through caster focus fire, and presto, viable class.

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Anonymous said...

I am a hunter/pally on live, and although I'll be switching to DK to level first, I am excited for hunters and will probably level it before my paladin. Survival was awesome, and you are absolutelty correct this nerf hurt. Also switching our 41 survival talent to 21 marks for pvp was a big nerf to our cooldown DPS. I don't even pick up my 11, 21 and 41 talents. The only reason I even get wyvern sting is because I need it for the 3% increased damage. Blizzard needs to relook at survival talents, and overall dps.

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Anonymous said...

I pretty much agree with most everything Kenny said. Explosive Shot was too heavily nerfed to be useful in pvp much anymore, even despite the added stun on it (which can be amazing).

My suggestions (and these have been posted on the Hunter boards before by other people)?

1) Remove the AoE component. Hunter's are good enough with AoE now (Volley) that we really don't need another AoE shot like this. It's "explosive" because it still has ticks in my opinion.


2) Remove the last tick of the shot. Having three ticks if nice and fun, but it is counterproductive to burst in every way possible when you have LnL up. You can't spam your button like you can with Arcane (giving you a very good armor ignoring burst) if you want to get the most out of your shot. Also, this would give them more leeway to improve the base damage of the shot per tick.

Finally, a little side note... the Readiness change (from a Surv perspective) was stupid I think. It completely killed the tree for competitive pvp and is now making us all one major spec (MM) to be viable. It wasn't promoting variety at all, but rather consolidation. I really wish they'd change it back, and then leave it that way. The trees were fine, they just needed some tweaking. Just not the major reorganization they pulled off.

Anonymous said...

It is not garbage in pvp. Its still better then arcane shot. it does more damage, more increased damage based off of attack power, plus ur lock and load proc u can do 3 explosive shots...thats y explosive shot is amazing...and yes, explosive shot does NOT need to share a cd with arcane shot...i also find a problem with only having 2 direct damage shots that i can move while casting...