Hunter PvP Strategy Guide- Levels 1-45 by Krazagore
Some acronyms are used in the following article that might not be familiar to you, for reference, here are the acronyms and their meaning.
PvP - Person versus Person (fighting real people)
PvE - Person versus Environment (fighting computer controlled monsters)
NPC - non-player character (controlled by a computer)
PC - Player Character (controlled by a real person)
DPS - Damage Per Second
AoC/AoH/AoM - Aspect of the Cheetah/Hawk/Monkey
[A href="http://wow.warcry.com/scripts/images/view_image.phtml?id=61319&site=19" target="_Blank"][/a]The first thing to remember when engaging in PvP is that the other person is just that, a person. People make mistakes, but they also utilize techniques that are beyond a simple computer controlled programs ability. In this case, that computer program is World of Warcraft. For example, an NPC controlled Rogue won't try to run behind you to use the backstab ability, but a player controlled Rogue will, making the task of defeating your opponent all the more difficult.
If you're a first time PvPer, it's important to put everything you know about PvE combat out of your mind. Think of it this way, PvP and PvE are like apples and oranges, relatively similar on the outside in terms of shape, but extremely different on the inside. Just standing there and blasting away in PvE just won't work in a PvP situation. Also keep in mind that most of the below strategies are oriented around your range attacks, if you prefer being a melee Hunter for some odd reason, these strategies won't be as effective.
The following strategies are useful for levels 1-45, and perhaps beyond. I'm not necessarily claiming that these strategies will work beyond level 45, because I'm only a level 45 Hunter myself! However, the below techniques are utilized by my peers and I to great effect. I'm hoping they'll benefit you as well.
Pets - A Hunter's Best Friend
Hunters primarily use their pet as a tank when engaging in PvE, but in PvP your pet is used for pure damage, since taunting doesn't work against PCs. With this in mind, I'd advise getting a pet that is high in DPS, NOT armor, unless you plan to never engage in PvP, which would be a very hallow existence indeed! Generally, pets that have higher armor (like turtles) only have about 10% more armor than pets with higher DPS (like cats). Pets with a high DPS, on the other hand, have a 20% higher DPS than those with more armor. So either your pet lives 10% longer but does 20% less damage, or your pet lives 10% shorter but does 20% more damage. That might be getting too technical for some, but overall, I'd recommend a higher DPS pet in any situation, even PvE. Also remember to check out the links at the bottom to find the pet that's perfect for you!
Aspects - You Are What You Activate!
Aspects are perhaps the strongest set of abilities a Hunter possesses. For example, say a Warrior sneaks up on you as you're fighting a mob, assuming your pet has the MOBs agro in hand, you could turn around, shoot Scatter Shot, (confusing your opponent for 4 seconds) run away, shoot Concussive Shot, slowing their speed to 50%, fire Serpent Sting, and just kite him until he's dead! If you are forced to engage in melee, always, ALWAYS remember to turn AoM on. The 8% Dodge increase, which might not seem like much at first, is devastating, especially against Rogues. I've also included links to several useful macros for Scatter Shot and engaging in Melee Combat at the end of this guide.
Tracking - Like Radar, Only Better
Tracking is an invaluable skill, both in PvE and PvP. Your most valuable tracking skills are Track Humanoid and Track Hidden. Track Humanoid is the most useful, as it can alert you to an opponent long before they reach you. Track Hidden is useful to keep Rogues from sneaking up behind you, but I rarely find myself using it, since flare is much more useful. I'd recommend keeping Track Humanoid on at all times in a hostile area, unless you feel the need to see where beasts are with Beast Tracking. You might have noticed that I didn't mention Track Undead, which many players may use to track an Undead PC, however, Undead PCs are considered Humanoids, only NPC Undead are tracked using Track Undead!
The Importance Of Traps
Traps are something I rarely see Hunters use, every once in awhile they'll lay down a freeze or immolation trap, but most Hunters don't work them into every battle. Traps have countless uses, Frost traps are absolutely devastating to melee classes, Explosive traps are excellent for AOE damage in raids, and I personally use Immolation trap every chance I get. Freeze trap is probably the most useful. For example, say you know a Rogue is around, of course he's going to backstab you, so set down a Freeze trap and stand right on it, when he gets close, BAM, he's frozen and helpless! Freeze trap is useful for multiple Horde also, just make sure you set it down before you get in combat!
Utilizing Your Skills Effectively
Conserving your mana and using your skills in the most effective manner is key to winning any PvP battle. Nothing is worse that being in the heat of battle and suddenly running out of mana! Keep in mind that most of the Hunter's skills are instant, meaning you can use them on the move. Jumping and turning around to use a skill is very popular and very effective among Hunters. Despite the fact that you have to be standing still to use your Auto Shot, blasting an opponent with Serpent Sting and Concussive Shot can give you the needed advantage. Concussive Shot is much more useful in PvP than PvE, especially when fighting a primarily melee character. Serpent Sting is devastating against classes with low HP, I can't count how many times a Rogue or Mage has run away from me only to meet their maker at the hands of Serpent Sting. Rapid Fire is very effective also if your opponent decides to concentrate on your pet or is affected by Concussive Shot. Remember, and I can't stress this enough, jumping and turning around to use an ability is one of the most effective techniques Hunters have. Once you get the hang of it, you can even jump, turn around, use ability, and turn back around to continue running! The easiest way of doing this is to hold the right mouse button to turn quickly, as using the keyboard is much too slow.
Some Hunters also have a habit of "spamming" shots, or using abilities when they aren't needed. I often see Hunters using Concussive Shot and Serpent Sting when either it's already in effect, or it's simply not needed. The only ability you should be using constantly is Arcane Shot, as it does damage. Concussive shot is useful for slowing your opponent, and Serpent Sting should be kept on the target constantly, but it lasts 15 seconds, so you don't need to use it everytime it's available! Rather, reapply it only when needed.
I've made many mistakes in my time, and the most important thing is that I learned from them. Here are just a few of fights that stand out in my mind, and how I won, or lost!
46 Hunter Vs. 50 Warrior
I was kickin some ass in Searing Gorge, and out of nowhere comes a Warrior four levels above me, I had half health, so naturally I got owned! When I came back to my corpse, he was camping me, I respawned out of his sight, got to full health and mana, and set down a frost trap. Then I lured the poor fool right into it! I applied Scorpid Sting and used Rapid Fire, but Warriors have a LOT of HP, and he escaped the trap before he was dead. He stunned me and slowed my speed to 50%, I used Scatter Shot, got some distance away, used Concussive Shot, reapplied Scorpid Sting, and before long, victory was mine =D
Moral - Frost Trap > Warrior.
47 Hunter Vs. 51 Rogue
I was in Feralas one day kickin some Ogre ass, and I was at half health when a 51 Rogue jumped me! He stunned me for a few seconds, and almost killed me, but I immediately used Scatter Shot, ran away, then I kept on using Concussive Shot and Arcane Shot until he met his maker.
Moral - Get Scatter Shot, now.
Here are some links you're certain to find useful...
TKA Something - The ultimate Hunter site, many sections are still under construction, but the Bestiary alone is more than enough reason to visit. It's the perfect tool for finding the perfect pet.
WoW Macros - Very useful for all classes, and the Hunter macros they have are invaluable. It includes the Scatter Shot and Melee Combat macros I mentioned above.
Thottbot - A necessity for any WoW player. Thottbot is a massive database containing weapons, armor, quests, etc. Basically, anything and everything.
Curse Gaming - The ultimate source for all WoW user interface mods. If it exists, it's here.
These strategies will help you win battles, but you can't win every time. Don't get frustrated if you are killed by your opponent, the more you PvP, the better you get. I'm hoping to write up a PvE Strategy Guide for Hunters also, and eventually a revision of this guide for levels 1-60. If you have any questions, comments, or additions you'd like to make, be sure to email me at [email@example.com]
I hope you enjoyed reading this article as much as I enjoyed writing it!
Version 1.0 - 4/20/05 - Hunter PvP Strategy guide is released.
Version 1.1 - 4/22/05 - Made slight grammatical changes and changed the Tracking section to correct what I previously wrote about Track Undead only being useful to the Alliance. A fellow Hunter pointed out that Undead PCs are counted as Humanoids, only Undead NPCs are tracked using Track Undead.
Version 1.2 - 5/28/05 - Made several grammatical changes, added a Links, The Importance Of Traps and a Personal Experiences section. Also updated several of the already existing sections with new information, including Screenshots.