1 year ago
The state of Marksmanship
This thread is intended to address, in a comprehensive manner, the current position of Marksmanship in BfA. Since Blizzard has repeatedly said that tuning passes have not yet been done, I'll be specifically focusing on mechanical issues and features, along with proposals to fix them (derived from several of the very long MM threads here and in the Class Development section), though I will also be noting significant tuning issues as well. I'll be modeling this after some of the higher quality feedback posts made recently for other classes/specs.

Core Issues
The baseline rotation works reasonably well. However, it has some issues.
  • Aimed Shot's cast time. Many players feel the base cast time is too long, and causes the entire rotation to feel slow.
  • Unbonused Arcane Shot damage. It feels low, and makes steady/arcane filler feel unrewarding.
  • Rapid Fire as a generator. This prevents it from scaling with mastery, making it fall behind as gear improves, and causes very weird playstyles with focus management, especially with talents.
  • Lack of a power-feeling signature shot. Rapid Fire is arguably the closest to that, but it doesn't have the same powerful feel as a true signature shot (Chimera Shot or Windburst, for example).
  • Precise Shots feels weird in AoE situations. Multi-Shot doesn't consume it, meaning you either have to waste the buff, or weave in single-target Arcane Shot casts during AoE.
  • Sustained AoE feels problematic. Aimed does a LOT of damage with Trick Shot, but once you're out of charges, you're basically reduced to spamming low-damage Multi-Shot.
  • Trick Shots requires 3 targets to activate, but the Rapid Fire effect is clearly intended for 2-target cleave. The limited AoE range on Multi-Shot can at times make triggering Trick Shots an issue even in AoE situations.
  • The RNG in the base rotation is extremely low. The only RNG is the number of Precise Shots charges you gain from Aimed Shot, and that's of very limited impact. Talents that add RNG have extremely low proc rates or no rotational changes associated with them.
  • Many talents in general feel very low impact, either because their effects aren't terribly noticeable or because they have extremely low proc rates. We also have AoE talents competing with ST talents.
  • Our primary cooldown, Trueshot, doesn't feel as impactful as other class CDs, and requires a very specific set of conditions in order to use properly (no Aimed Shot charges, enough time and focus to cast Aimed Shot before you get another charge, RF not coming off cooldown before you get off that first AiS cast).
  • The benefit of Haste feels low. It doesn't affect the cooldown time on Aimed Shot or Rapid Fire (a departure compared to most classes), meaning that increased haste simply increases the percentage of our time filling with Steady and unbonused Arcane. This leaves haste as being pretty darn terrible for us.
  • Lone Wolf is currently not worth using due to damage balance and pet utility
  • Moving between targets while soloing can involve a lot of waiting because our passive focus regen is so slow.

Detailed Analysis
Aimed Shot
The cast time on Aimed Shot is easily one of the most commonly complained about elements of MM in BfA. Players often assert that it makes the rotation feel slow, and leaves the hunter vulnerable to necessary movement (and a loss of the entire cast time so far) for significant length of time. Aimed Shot currently represents the longest non-talented hardcast ability in any DPS rotation in BfA. Chaos Bolt has the same base cast time, but is almost always cast with the 30% reduction from Backdraft. The only two talents that provide similar or longer hardcasts (Destruction's Soul Fire, 4.0s cast, and Fire's Pyroclasm, 4.5s cast) involve intentional talent choices and only occur once every 30-45 seconds in normal gameplay. Marksmanship uses AiS an average of once every 12 seconds. This cast time, along with the dominance of AiS casts and AiS-based effects (Precise Shots, Trick Shots) in both our single-target and AoE rotation, is a very commonly cited source of MM feeling "slow" in BfA.

A common recommendation is to drop the base cast time to 2.5s and adjust Arcane Shot damage to compensate for the slight increase in filler GCDs per minute.
Edited by Kaedys 05/28/2018 04:11 AM
Game Designer
1 year ago
The state of Marksmanship
Hey everyone,

I wanted to post a few things about Marksmanship, including a few things in the works.

Lone Wolf's damage at 10% may not be the final number. I changed it from 18% to 10% a while back so it being at 18% and such a big DPS swing between pet and no pet would stop dominating the conversation about Lone Wolf. Tuning will happen.

Aimed Shot's charge recovery time will be reduced by haste in a future build.

Rapid Fire's visual effects are not final.
Rapid Fire will bounce to 1 additional target when Trick Shots is active in a future build.

Sniper Training (Mastery) will be changed to affect all of your shots instead of only Focus spending shots in a future build so things like Rapid Fire are not left behind as gear progresses.

RNG - there's a lot of talents with randomness in them. We hear the feedback that you feel things are too random. Some things will probably change to be less random in general, others will have some adjustments made to how they proc to prevent the really bad luck streaks from being a thing.

As always, thanks for the feedback both in this thread and others created.
Game Designer
1 year ago
The state of Marksmanship
Marksmanship Hunters,

Hello again, a few notes this morning.

- Aimed Shot should still be a 12 second recharge time before Haste, I'm unsure why some people are reporting it is showing up as 10 seconds for them. Is this still happening after the build that went up yesterday?

- After lots of discussion and reading feedback and many dungeon runs and raid testing and questing, we have decided that we're going to changed Aimed Shot to 2.5 second cast time, and Steady Shot to 1.75 second cast time.

- Regarding Lone Wolf and Pet Utility, if you have your active pet out, the Command Pet button in your spellbook should change into whatever your pet's special ability is, such as Primal Rage. If you dismiss your pet as a Marksmanship Hunter and opt into Lone Wolf, Command Pet should change into Survival of the Fittest as a cooldown you can use that reduces the damage you take by 20%. This looks to have some issues currently, and will be resolved in a future build.

Thanks for the continued feedback on this thread and others.
Edited by Nimox 06/08/2018 06:31 PM
Game Designer
1 year ago
The state of Marksmanship
A quick clarification post because I've seen some confusion:

Lone Wolf will ONLY give you the extra Survival of the Fittest button, regardless of what pet you dismissed to get the Lone Wolf effect. It will not change the ability you get depending on your dismissed pet's specialization.
1 year ago
The state of Marksmanship
Extended the cap for you guys on this one.
Currently Ranked: Fluff