Pesky Perks

The big change for Hunters in this latest beta build is perks. Blizzard has made some major modifications to them this go around.

In an effort to weed out the less interesting perks Blizzard removed many of them, either by incorporating them into the abilities they affected, or by just plain removing them.

Each Hunter spec now has four perks and you will get one every other level instead of every level.

Beast Mastery

Here are the four perks for Beast Mastery

    • Enhanced Camouflage: You heal 3% of your maximum health every second while Camouflage is active.
    • Improved Focus Fire: Focus Fire now also grants 2% increase to attack power per Frenzy stack consumed.
    • Improved Beast Cleave: Your pet’s attacks strike nearby enemy targets for an additional 25% of damage done while Beast Cleave is active.
    • Enhanced Basic Attacks: Your pet’s basic attacks have a 20% chance to reset the basic attack cooldown and make the next basic attack free.

The following perks have been assimilated by the abilities they affect.

    • Improved Kill Command: Increases the damage done by Kill Command by 20%.
    • Improved Arcane Shot: Increases the damage done by Arcane Shot by 20%.
    • Improved Cobra Shot: Increases the damage done by Cobra Shot by 20%.

The following perks are gone and they will be missed.

    • Enhanced Kill Shot: Kill Shot can now be used on targets with 35% or less health.
    • Empowered Pets: Increases all damage done by your combat pets by 20%.


Here are the four perks for Survival.

The following perks have been assimilated by the abilities they affect.

    • Improved Serpent Sting: Increases Serpent Sting damage by 20%.
    • Improved Arcane Shot: Increases damage done by Arcane Shot by 20%.
    • Improved Cobra Shot: Increases damage done by Cobra Shot by 20%.
    • Improved Black Arrow: Increases damage done by Black Arrow by 20%.

The following perk is gone and has been replaced by Hunter tears; the sad kind.

    • Improved Camouflage: Camouflage no longer breaks from dealing or taking damage.


Here are the four perks for Marksmanship.

The following perks have been assimilated by the abilities they affect.

    • Enhanced Chimera Shot: Reduce focus cost of Chimera Shot by 10.
    • Improved Aimed Shot: Increase damage done by Aimed Shot by 20%.
    • Improved Steady Shot: Increase damage done by Steady Shot by 20%.
    • Improved Multi-Shot: Increases the damage of Multi-Shot by 20% and reduces the Focus cost by 5.
    • Improved Chimaera Shot: Increases the damage of Chimaera Shot by 20%.

It should be noted that Multi-shot only had it’s focus cost reduced. Its damage was not increased.

Final Thoughts

I really didn’t have any issue with the original system, and I enjoyed getting a perk every level even it was just a basic damage boost to an ability. That was something you noticed and felt good about. I guess now we’ll just be strong from the start, and that’s fine too.

I certainly understand the desire to weed out boring perks, but I feel like Blizzard cut some of the most interesting ones originally planned for Hunters.

Enhanced Kill Shot for Beast Mastery was great while leveling. Things die so fast that you hardly ever have a chance to get a Kill Shot off. Having it available sooner really made it feel useful. It wasn’t too shabby on high health mobs either.

The removal of Improved Camouflage is really a Tauren sized kick to the groin. Sure, most of saw it coming, but it hurts nonetheless.

One perk that was modified a couple of builds back was the increased range for Marksmanship. This is baked into Sniper Training, but now comes with the limitations posed by this ability.

The perks are definitely nice but I feel like we lost a couple that were great examples of the fun and creativity Blizzard was putting into them.

One final thought is that this is still in beta, and just because certain abilities or perks are gone doesn’t mean there won’t be compensation when the tuning begins.

Alright, off to the Tanann Jungle… again.


  1. First of all, that last character wipe really was a bummer. I was just getting comfortable with all the new buttons.
    Secondly, I really wish perks were each level. I felt meaningful when you dinged to get a little power-up. I wonder if they could take the four remaining perks and split them so there’s, say, a level 1 enhanced chimera shot and then a level 2 enhanced chimera shot at another level? That’s probably not as elegant, but it would be a little bonus each ding.

    1. I liked getting a perk every level as well, but this will work.

      I was not happy about the last wipe either, but that’s because I had spent two hours running around taming pets for something I wanted to do. Now I’ll have to do that all over again. Oh well.

  2. I think the removal of Improved Camouflage makes BM and Marks better at survival than Survival. At least in PvE.

    BM has a pet which can offer more protection (especially with Adaptation & Glyph of Bestial Wrath). I think I also read somewhere that hunters and pets will share CC related diminishing returns.

    MM has Glyph of Chimaera Shot which heals you for 2% (not much but still better than nothing), as well as Kill Shot at 35% and Rapid Fire as a burst DPS ability.

    SV still has “Survivalist” which heals you 15% over 10 secs but that is after your target is dead. Might as well use bandages for that.

    especially since Hunters now share diminishing returns with their pet. while MM gets 2% from the Glyph of Chimaera Shot.

  3. Great post and great blog. I’ve discovered it via your tweeter 😉 I’ll follow it and I’ll add you to my blogroll… Empowered explosive shots looks great, SV forever 🙂

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