How To: Make a Shiny New Survival Hunter

So back during the Great BM Nerf of 3.0.8, there were only three raiding hunters in the guild and two of us went Survival. After BM was unnerfed in the following patch, we stayed that way because it added some nice variety to the raid pool (we now have 2 BM, 2 MM and 2 SV, if my last count was accurate) so everybody could get a solid set of buffs. Well, that and at least I was too cheap to fork out another 50g for respeccing (and another few hundred on matching gems, enchants, and glyphs) when I knew I’d be throwing 1K at a trainer pretty soon to get dual specs anyway.

With dual specs looming ever closer, I suppose it’s time for all of us to sit down and figure out what our talents are going to look like. My hunter, I know, will have a spec for BM raiding (aka The Return of Wilhelm the Devilsaur) and a spec for Survival raiding (aka Halp! We Needs Replenishment!). Of course, there will be talent changes when 3.1 goes live, so anything said about talent speccing now is just what’s working in the live realms with only an occasional passing nod to what might happen with the new patch.

All that being said, let’s look at what a good Survival build should include. I based my hunter’s SV build off of Lienna’s recommendations and would encourage those new to SV to give her template a whirl. She goes step by step, provides nice pictures, explains everything very well and has been playing the tree since far before there was ever a hint of SV being as popular as it’s become. She knows what she’s talking about.

Survival Talents For PVE
Those Other Talents That are Not Survival but Help Survival

Like any other build, start with the template then start tweaking depending on your needs and preferences. There’s no such thing as a perfect build, although number crunchers can serve up countless “optimal DPS” variations. The player puts those talents into effect. A talent you specced for but don’t use because you don’t like it is wasted.

For a full discussion on all aspects of making your survival hunter, I refer you to:

The Elist Jerk’s Survival Hunter in WotLK Thread

Because there’s no use repeating what’s been put so well. It goes into detail about talents, glyphs, itemization, shot rotations, pets, and much, much more. A good read on a Tuesday morning 😉

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