The list of available talents in this post is a little different than the one in Levels 10-14. Since I’m putting all of my points into Beast Mastery for now, I’m not including those talents I can’t reach on the other trees (and it seems a little silly to relist their Tier 1 talents.)
I still haven’t found any good guides for leveling hunters, so if anyone would like to drop me a link, I’d appreciate it. Also, if anyone would like to make a case in the comments for taking a different leveling path, I’m open to that as well. Remember, I’m still learning here!
And as a helpful hint to those of you who haven’t stumbled across it yet– the Talent Calculator over at Wowhead is a great little tool!
Focused Fire : Beast Mastery
All damage caused by you is increased by 1/2% while your pet is active and the critical strike chance of your pet’s special abilities is increased by 10/20% while Kill Command is active.
This is another slightly odd talent, in that part of it’s affect only kicks in once you have the level 66 ability Kill Command. So for the moment the only bonus we’ll be getting from this talent would be the 1/2% increased damage. Not really that appealing. Still, it’s a better ‘filler’ talent for my playstyle than either Improved Aspect of the Monkey or Improved Revive Pet. It seems odd to be taking filler talents this early in a build, but my DPS is still solid so I’m not too worried.
Improved Aspect of the Monkey : Beast Mastery
Increases the Dodge bonus of your Aspect of the Monkey and Aspect of the Dragonhawk by 2%.
This is a definitely pass talent for me, since it boost an Aspect that I never use. Plus boosting melee talents is rather out of place in a tree that’s supposed to be focusing on pets. I feel like forcing the Blizzard developers to write ‘Hunters are not a melee class’ a hundred times on the chalkboard… there’s a good reason they’re doing such a drastic redesign of the talent trees come Cataclysm!
Thick Hide : Beast Mastery
Increases the armor rating of your pets by 7/14/20% and your armor contribution from items by 4/7/10%.
This is my bread a butter talent and the first one from this Tier I filled up whilst leveling. Again, like Endurance Training, this ability is focusing on the survivability of the pets (and the hunters) as opposed to a DPS increase. Although it did end up in a DPS jump once I had it maxed because I swapped out Meatsheild (tenacity, pig) and Cuisnart (ferocity, raptor) for Shade (ferocity, cat) and Shadow (ferocity, cat) without any change in their ability to hold aggro and survive.
Improved Revive Pet : Beast Mastery
Revive Pet’s casting time is reduced by 3/6 sec, mana cost is reduced by 20/40%, and increases the health your pet returns with by an additional 15%/30.
This is a very useful skill for raiding hunters… and not that important for those of us who can afford to wait the extra six seconds. There have been very few times when I have had to revive my pets and almost every one was after a full wipe. If my hunters have to take a break to sit and chow down, it doesn’t hurt anything for the pets to break for lunch too. I may come back and pick this one up later, but for now it isn’t as useful a filler to me as Focused Fire, which provides a small DPS increase.