It's no secret that I love SV for a number of reasons: the dynamic shot rotation, explosive shot, the Lock and Load proc and generally being all around…explody. Now that I've got most of my Add-ons updated I feel like I can play my hunter properly. Patch 4.0 gave the Hunters a bit of an overhaul. We now have Focus instead of mana; Armour Penetration has gone out the door (woohoo!) as well as ammunition. So there have been lots of changes to the class, but SV has remained relatively the same.
SV Shot Rotation
Explosive shot whenever it is available
Arcane Spam, I mean shot
When Lock and Load procs…
Arcane or Steady shot to build up focus.
Lock and Load resets the Explosive Shot cool down so you want to make sure, especially if you've just used it, that you don't override it.
Reapply stings and black arrow as necessary and use steady shot when you need to generate focus. You could even throw a snake or explosive trap in there via Trap Launcher if you wanted a little more flair. You'll also want to use Kill Command when available as well as Rapid Fire.
Now that list is for bosses generally. I find with trash I can't get more than two steady shots in after I put up Serpent Sting and Black Arrow. I would be temped to just fire off arcane shots instead or multi-shots especially if you've put talents in Serpent Spread.
Focus is cool, but I need to get used to it. Sometimes I feel like I can't get rid of it and other times I'm bone dry. It sure beats Aspect of the Viper though!
I've only done one instance since 4.0 went live and that was Heroic Halls of Reflection with a DK that was doing 9000 dps. Instances these days aren't a great way to measure your damage but I was somewhere in the range of 4800-5200 which is fine by me. Once we get another shot at Festergut we should be able to see some proper numbers.
I am also interested to see how they stack up against our Beast Mastery Mistress, Chawakanda. If anyone can squeeze out the best possible dps for that spec, it's her!
Talk among the dps nerds is that after Agility, Mastery is our priority stat. Anything that increases the damage of our main shot is going to be a plus. I think I have around 11.8 in Mastery. Unfortunately I have no idea what that means until I'm able to hit up a true dps check.
Thus concludes my little tour of the Survival Hunter. I think that I've hit the major points but probably left something out. It might not be the spec du jour these days but I still get a lot of enjoyment out of it. There's enough variety to keep it interesting but it's not as "whack-a-mole" as Marksman. There's a bit of fluidity as you weave your Lock and Load rotation into your regular shots and what I can only describe as a Hunter Trance once everything becomes automatic. It's just an all around fun spec to play!
Hello Tauren is exploding your mind with awesomeness.