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Cataclysm: Hunter Disappointment

July 14, 2010

I’m really glad the whole RealID fiasco is over (to the saner elements of the playerbase, at least). Time to get back to the Internet Dragons and the manners in which we kill them. Between university and a rather intensive Java course I started last week, there hasn’t been much time for me to explore the wonders of the Cataclysm Beta. Still, I’ve reached a few conclusions so far.

I don’t like the way Hunters are going so far on the Beta.

Yaaay, I’m disagreeing with Blizzard’s eternal and infinite wisdom! Someone give me a medal!

With Focus regenerating slightly more 3 points/second, shots costing 40-50 Focus, and the Focus bar only going up to 100, Hunters feel awfully clunky now. Standing still and shooting at a target dummy without concern for ammo or resources is a beautiful experience, but it all dies very quickly once you have to move or kite something. Only having two shots at full Focus and having to wait nearly 10 seconds to fire off any non-Auto Shot if you can’t cast Steady Shot is not fun at all. Specially compared to the current situation on Live, where a skilled Hunter can keep pressure even while on the move, restrained mostly by ability cooldowns instead.

There’s also Aspect of the Fox giving aa 30% Focus regeneration rate bonus, which I don’t think will be nearly enough to compensate. First of all, Aspect of the Fox will only be learned very late in the leveling process. Secondly, even a straight 6 Focus/second regeneration would still keep us locked out of all of our damaging ranged abilities for 6 seconds. One could say that having Auto-Shots on the move would be a DPS boost. But Auto-Shots don’t cause nearly enough damage as the Focus-based attacks (which is only obvious, really), and you’ll still need to jumpshot to run around at maximum speed while running away from something (kiting a mob or player, for example).

I know people will get used to it once it’s polished and properly implemented. And who knows what the new talents will bring? But right now, it’s too clunky for me. It feels unwieldy to kite or simply deal with things on your minimum range. Also, why do newly-created Hunters get Steady Shot very early, but have to wait until level 12 to get Aspect of the Hawk and actually get a way to regenerate Focus? I understand that Blizzard doesn’t want to make things too complex for characters that are just starting up, but Steady Shots are such a core ability for the Hunter class now that I can’t understand the reasoning behind that decision.

Ah, well. Sad day for my Hunting career.

On the other hand, Dwarves will be able to be Warlocks on Cataclysm. Mwhahahahah!

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