Locked and Loaded: Hunter trinkets in patch 6.2
Welcome to Locked and Loaded, Blizzard Watch’s regular column for survival, marksmanship, and beast mastery hunters. This week, your host Adam Koebel (@BendakWoW) will be talking about exciting hunter trinkets coming in patch 6.2.
For me, there’s nothing more satisfying than looting a good trinket. It’s right up there with completing a set bonus. When I look back at my favorite trinkets throughout WoW’s history, they all tend to be trinkets that do something interesting or just plain fun. A trinket such as Deathbringer’s Will, which randomly transformed you into one of 3 different races, was a real stand out. Bad Juju made a generic trinket fun by summoning funny little voodoo gnomes along with its regular stat proc. I need not mention Assurance of Consequence, a hall of famer if there ever was one.
The Hunter trinkets in Warlords so far have been your standard fare — passive stats with a proc of some kind. They’re nice DPS boosts but there’s not much fun to be had. Thankfully, things are looking a little more interesting in patch 6.2. Hellfire Citadel has 4 trinkets for Hunters, and I was recently able to test them out on the PTR. We’ll start with the boring one and move on up to the special ones.
The stat stick: Fel-Spring Coil
The Fel-Spring Coil drops off Iron Reaver (boss 2).
Beggars can’t be choosers when it comes to trinkets. This passive stat stick will act as your consolation prize as you wait for a real trinket to drop. It may be boring, but there’s nothing wrong with a big ol’ heap of stats. In fact, it’s pretty reliable DPS and you don’t have to worry about proc randomness. The stats on this trinket favor Marksmanship and Beast Mastery.
RPPM: Malicious Censer
The Malicious Censer drops off Tyrant Velhari (boss 11)
Multistrike? Check. Agility proc? Check. Sounds like a trinket that all 3 specs would love to have. Survival especially. I personally prefer trinkets with 20 sec procs over 10 sec procs because it gives more room to overlap other cooldowns and procs. Sure, a 10 sec proc may offer better burst when it aligns with everything else, but when it procs while you’re low on focus it’s kind of wasted. This trinket is a no-brainer for all Hunter specs.
The melee Hunter trinket: Mirror of the Blademaster
The Mirror of the Blademaster drops off Hellfire High Council (boss 4).
A tribute to our Raptor Strike days, this trinket summons fel clones of your Hunter equipped with swords at the foot of your current target. These mirror images whirlwind for 20 seconds, dealing constant AoE damage to all enemies within 10 yards. They do meaningful damage and are especially powerful in AoE situations. Its only downside is that the mirror images stay in place once they are summoned, so if your target moves out of range it will no longer be hit. There are 4 mirror images summoned for survival and marksmanship, and only 2 for beast mastery. The reason for this is because the beast mastery version is buffed by mastery. The trinket also has a passive agility bonus.
This trinket is a blast to use. It looks cool in action and it offers up some interesting gameplay in where you decide to place your sword-wielding clones for maximum damage. It’s too early to tell if it’ll beat the Malicious Censer in terms of raw DPS, but I think it’s a safe bet that it will at least be a contender for the best AoE trinket.
Class trinket: Talisman of the Master Tracker
Archimonde, the final boss of Hellfire Citadel, drops class specific trinkets. These are not your ordinary trinkets. They have no passive stats, nor any stat procs. Instead they offer a unique bonus that changes based on your active specialization. For Hunters, this trinket is known as the Talisman of the Master Tracker.
- Blackness: Your Arcane Shots and Multi-Shots have a 66-87% chance to reset the cooldown of Black Arrow (chance scales with ilvl).
This is a bonus that’s going to either be mediocre or amazing depending on the situation. In single target, you’re not going to get a whole lot of out of this. Since Black Arrow doesn’t stack, there’s no benefit to re-applying it before it expires. It has a 20-second duration with a 24-second cooldown so all this trinket is really doing is removing that 4 seconds gap between Black Arrows. There may be some value in re-applying it for the T18 2-piece bonus, which only lasts for 15 seconds.
However, on a fight with multiple targets things get interesting. Now you’ll be able to have Black Arrow ticking on all of them. Not only is this a lot of damage by itself but it also means more chances for Lock and Load to proc. This type of gameplay lends itself well to Focusing Shot to keep up with the high Focus costs. I was able to keep Black Arrow rolling on 4-5 targets, and doing that I could barely keep up with the Lock and Load procs. There is a tremendous amount of potential here, especially once you consider the T18 2-piece and 4-piece bonuses (which we’ll discuss more in the future).
- Longview: Your shots deal 0.33-0.44% increased damage per yard between you and the target (scales with ilvl).
Perhaps the most situational bonus of all, at least in a raiding environment. If you’re able to stand at max range, you’re going to love this trinket. But how often will such a scenario happen? What about bosses where you need to stack up with the raid right behind the boss? The trinket would be virtually worthless in that situation.
The bonus really fits the Marksmanship sniper theme, but it’s too early to tell just how beneficial this will end up being based on the encounters in Hellfire Citadel. Certainly outside of the raid you’ll be able to exploit this bonus all of the time. I have a feeling Marksmanship hunters will be wanting to keep a backup trinket on hand for the situations where they can’t rain down arrows from afar.
- Beastlord: Bestial Wrath now lasts an additional 30 sec on your pet, and it increases your pet’s damage by an additional 12-21% (scales with lvl).
Unlike the survival and marksmanship bonuses which are a little bit more situational, the Beast Mastery bonus is simply a raw damage increase. Your pet will remain big and red for a full 40 seconds when you use Bestial Wrath (it will still only last 10 seconds on you), and the bonus pet damage is increased by a significant amount, scaling with the trinket’s item level.
There’s no doubt in my mind that this trinket will be best-in-slot for Beast Mastery in all situations.
Overall, I’m quite excited about this trinket. I think the Survival version has the most interesting bonus because it creates an entirely different gameplay. I love the Beast Mastery one simply because the longer my pet is big and red, the better. I’m still on the fence with the Marksmanship version.
Looking at what’s been datamined so far in terms of raid finder trinkets, I’m sorry to say there’s nothing too exciting to be found in there. It looks like stat sticks all around. You’ll need to make the jump to normal mode if you want to get your hands on something cool like the Mirror of the Blademaster or the Talisman of the Master Tracker.
Soon I’ll be taking a look at the tier 18 set bonuses. Instant-cast Aimed Shots and angry Fel Boars await!
This week’s hunter Q&A
I always thought the idea of exotic ammunition made sense as a Marksmanship perk. It makes sense that the master’s of shooting stuff would have the ability to tweak their ammunition. It would also give Marksmanship a little bit of AoE potential (which it currently lacks), but then we’d need a replacement level 100 talent.
You are correct that when there’s lots of Beast Cleave happening, Steady Focus has the most potential DPS out of these talents. However, Dire Beast is never far behind. You won’t be harming yourself by using Dire Beast in any situation as Beast Mastery. It will also give you more DPS on your priority target. Thrill of the Hunt is a little weaker for beast mastery overall because Beast Mastery Hunters don’t tend to use Arcane Shot very much (outside of Bestial Wrath, where it’s already cheap to cast).
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