- Author: Nevermore
- Date: August 30, 2022
- Expansion: WotLK Classic
Player versus Player requires a bit of a different mindset compared to the PvE content. It necessitates fast thinking, fast reactions, and adaptability to each situation. This guide will go over all of your useful spells, and cover how to use them as effectively as possible.
In the sections below we will go through each ability and explain how to properly use it. Click a section to expand it!
Strategy & Spell Priority
When it comes to possible strategies and the spell priorities that you will want to employ, we must first take into consideration the fact that every matchup is entirely different and requires a different approach. Depending on whether you are fighting a caster or a melee physical damage dealer, your approach to combat will drastically change!
We will now showcase different strategies and spell priorities that you can use depending on which type of encounter you find yourself in.
General Spell Priority
- Offensive: Rapid Fire ->Black Arrow (On Cooldown) -> Serpent Sting -> Explosive Shot (On cooldown) -> Use Lock and Load proc whenever it becomes available (2 x Explosive Shots in a row, with a 1-second delay between them) ->Aimed Shot (On cooldown!) -> Scatter Shot -> Steady Shot (Use it only if you have plenty of distance between yourself and your target/Use it between Explosive Shot casts ) -> Multi-Shot (If two targets are close to each other) -> Viper Sting ( Caster/Healer target) -> Kill Shot (Spam on cooldown)
- Defensive: Deterrence (When your foe is about to burst you down) -> Disengage (To escape melee assailants or to simply get out of a caster’s range) -> Feign Death (Use it to cancel dangerous spells by forcing your foe to drop your target)
Hunters have a natural advantage against the caster archetype — whether a player might be a healer or a damage dealer, hunters possess the natural advantage. “Why is this?”, you might ask. Because of their increased range and a large variety of instant cast spells! As a Survival Hunter, you have access to instant cast spells such as Black Arrow, Scatter Shot, Explosive Shot, and Wyvern Sting, further increasing their potential of obliterating caster players instantly.
When fighting casters, the most important aspect is the range difference and the environment around you. Few casters in the game have the same range as you; knowing how to abuse this is the difference between a swift win and a hard and tedious battle. The fact that you have a better range means that you can strike first. Given that most of your spells are instant cast, your enemies will not even get in range to start “casting” before you unleash several instant cast abilities!
The second aspect that we have mentioned is the environment around you, meaning that you will have to constantly employ a tactic named “LoS”. LoS stands for “Line-of-Sight”, a term used to describe a player using the environment around him such as rocks, platforms, walls, and pillars to constantly get out of sight when another player is trying to cast a spell towards them. By doing this efficiently, you can cancel any spell targeted towards you and rain down hell on any caster with your instant cast abilities!
Your spell priority against casters will look like this:
- Rapid Fire -> Black Arrow -> Explosive Shot (On cooldown & Proc) -> Aimed Shot -> Wyvern Sting (If they start casting and you cannot LoS) -> Serpent Sting -> Multi-Shot -> Viper Sting (If they heal themselves massive amounts and do not die quickly) -> Kill Shot
As a Survival Hunter, melee fights are easier than any other hunter specialization since you are way more resilient and less prone to being deleted by a one-shot macro. Since our spec generally has a massive amount of stamina, we will have a far easier time when fighting any melee class.
In general, most Melee classes have access to gap-closing abilities that help them quickly reach you, however, you have access to a lot of abilities that can slow them down or outright disorient them. Even in melee fights, you have the advantage of striking first before your target reaches you. Still, you cannot properly utilize LoS against a class like Death Knight or Warrior.
The reason for this is that their kit is filled with gap-closing abilities, allowing them to stick to you endlessly. A Warrior has both a spammable slow effect and two different “Charge” abilities while a Death Knight can infinitely slow you while also being capable of using Death Grip in order to displace you and pull you towards him.
Even if your target reaches you, you have many tools to deter their efforts, with spells such as Wyvern Sting, Scatter Shot, Frost Trap, Freezing Trap, Concussive Shot, and Wing Clip. All of the spells listed above can either incapacitate your target or severely slow it for a considerable amount of time.
It is very important to understand that in a fight against a melee class, they will attempt to burst you down as soon as they reach you. Your first thought should be of using one of the abilities listed above to crowd control them. If you see your target attempting to burst you down, you have to keep in mind that you have access to Deterrence! You can use Deterrence in combination with abilities such as Frost Trap or Freezing Trap to safely crowd control your target without being damaged at all!
After you manage to crowd control your enemy, your main objective is to gain distance again in order to burst them down with your instant cast abilities. You can easily do this with Disengage!
The rest of the fight consists of constantly kiting your target and reducing its movement speed while trying to burst it down as fast as possible.
Note: “Kiting:” is a term that refers to the action of attacking your target while constantly moving, effectively forcing the target to chase you while being susceptible to your attacks.
Spell Priority against melee classes
- Rapid Fire -> Black Arrow -> Explosive Shot (On cooldown & Proc) -> Aimed Shot -> Wing Clip (If they reach you) -> Deterrence (If they try to burst you down) -> Frost Trap (Crowd control) -> Freezing Trap (Crowd control) -> Disengage -> Scatter Shot -> Wyvern Sting -> Kill Shot
In Battlegrounds, your purpose is quite simple, pure harassment of squishy targets. You will want to always stick with your group and make sure that you target vulnerable targets such as healers or casters. As a Survival Hunter, you have the advantage of being extremely resilient, making it easier for you to survive powerful melee fighters.
Your massive range and instant cast abilities will provide you with many opportunities to either harass or completely obliterate any squishy target, even if they try to hug their group. The fact that we have access to healing reduction and hybrid damage means that our enemies will have a hard time countering our damage output!
Besides sticking with your group, you can choose to become a lone hunter, picking off targets such as flag carriers or pocket healers. Our high stamina will make sure that we will not die quickly while acting out a “guerilla” attrition war on our enemies. However, this tactic works only on teams with less experienced players. Experienced players will quickly notice that their high-value teammates are attacked and will quickly attempt to swarm you in order to eliminate the threat!
Arenas as a Survival Hunter are a bit different compared to duels and battlegrounds, as your mentality has to shift towards long fights of attrition. Since you will often meet DPS/Healer comps, your focus will be on whittling down the opposite team slowly while relying on your massive health pool to survive.
In arenas, you can choose to either pair up with another damage dealer or with a healer. However, you also have the option of pairing up with a hybrid class such as a druid or a shaman in order to benefit from both healing and damage from your partner. Generally speaking, Healer/DPS comps are the best that you can find around, especially in 2 vs 2 arenas. In 3 vs 3 arenas, there will always be a healer, so take that into consideration.
As we mentioned earlier, your job in arenas is withering down your targets slowly and abusing your own survivability combined with that of your healer’s. As Survival Hunters, we value pets that are tanky and that can crowd control our enemies. Your whole mentality should switch from bursting down a target to trying to cripple your targets with spells such as Aimed Shot and Viper Sting. After all, the winner in arenas is usually defined by the team that manages to have a healer with mana remaining!
You will want to make use of both macros and addons to improve the quality of life of your gameplay, making sure that you keep track of what abilities your enemies have at their disposal and which abilities they have on cooldown. One of the most important aspects of the arena is to maintain calm and collected at all times and make sure that you do not end up panicking and randomly using your abilities!
Macros will help you fight your foes more efficiently! You will want to utilize macros in order to trigger multiple spells at the same time or to improve your overall quality of life!
#showtooltip /cast Rapid Fire /use [combat] 13 /use [combat] 14 /use [combat] Potion of Speed /use [combat] 10 /startattack
Start Attack Macro
The start attack macro assures you that your character will attack your target with basic attacks, no matter what spell you will utilize! You will genuinely want to make startattack macros for the majority of your spells!
#Showtooltip Black Arrow /Cast Black Arrow /Startattack
Feign Death Macro
You will want this macro to make sure that you cancel any action that you are currently doing in order to perform Feign Death properly
#showtooltip Feign Death /stopcasting /cast Feign Death
Aspect Change Macro
You will want this macro to quickly switch your aspect. You can customize this macro with any of your aspects!
#showtooltip [stance1] Aspect of the Dragonhawk /cast [stance2] Aspect of the Dragonhawk /cast [stance1] Aspect of the Cheetah
You can effectively use any spell in your arsenal with a mouseover macro, it is quite useful when you need to quickly cast a spell without actively switching targets. Fewer buttons to press always makes it easier, right?
#showtooltip Hunter's Mark /cast [@mouseover,exists] Hunter's Mark
Roar of Sacrifice Macro
This macro will help you easily cast Roar of Sacrifice on yourself.
#showtooltip Roar of Sacrifice /cast [@Player] Roar of Sacrifice
Kill Command Macro
Cast all of your pet’s abilities in one macro, making pet control a small bit easier.
#showtooltip Kill Command /petattack /cast Kill Command /cast Dash /cast Rabid /cast Bite