MM Hunter Rotation Haste Plateaus

Posted: by Frostheim

reviewed and accurate
Reviewed 6/27/11
Patch 4.2

View other WHU WoW Cataclysm hunter guides.

In Cataclysm our MM hunter shot rotations are more affected by haste than ever before. Haste is a more interesting stat than ever that does a lot for us, but the biggest benefit we gain from haste is its ability to actually alter our shot rotations — unfortunately haste doesn’t scale evenly. At certain points haste is pretty crummy for us, then at other points haste is suddenly great — these are our haste plateaus.

A MM hunter haste plateau is the amount of haste that lets us squeeze an extra Steady Shot and/or Arcane Shot in between each Chimera Shot. This is complicated by the Glyph of Chimera Shot that, if used, shortens the Chimera Shot cooldown and increases the haste we need to squeeze in an extra Steady Shot.

Haste Plateau Calculations

Note that all of these calculations assume that you have the 10% attack speed raid buff, Improved Steady Shot up, as well as 2/3 in the Pathing talent. I’m also doing all the calculations outside of the Careful Aim range, since during Careful Aim we do nothing but Steady Shot and hardcast Aimed Shot.  I will be rounding numbers in the logical direction — thus if you need 1 & 2/3 haste for a plateau, I’m running the haste rating for 1.66 haste, rather than 1.67 (because technically 1.67 is too slow). But my math is based on a lot more decimals than what I’m showing.

After much consideration, I’ve decided to only calculate the haste plateaus for an Arcane Shot focus dump rotation, rather than an Aimed Shot hardcast focus dump. Since we can’t rely on just hardcasting aimed, I think it makes more sense to aim for the arcane plateaus. Hardcasting aimed outside of Careful Aim is the minority of a MM rotation.

I’ll be going over the amount of haste needed to reach each plateau with and without the hunter tier-11 set bonus (which reduces the base cast time of Steady Shot) and with and without the Glyph of Chimera Shot.

Note that free Aimed Shot procs will disrupt your rotation and you plateau — when it procs it will make your rotation more focus positive, and you’ll have to adjust on the fly. As with all hunter rotations now, they are changeable and never set in stone. Finally, when noting the MM plateaus, I’m going to be listing the number of shots fired — this is not necessarily the order in which you’re fire them (you’ll usually want your steady pairs split up).

MM Hard Plateau 1

The first MM hard plateau is 4 Steady Shots, 2 Arcane Shots, and 1 Chimera Shot in 10 seconds (9 seconds with the Chimera Shot glyph).
This requires a Steady Shot cast time of 1.75 seconds without the glyph, and 1.5 seconds with the glyph.

No t11, no glyph With t11, no glyph No t11, with glyph With t11 and glyph
Already there Already there 3.335% haste Already there
0 haste rating 0 haste rating 428 haste rating 0 haste rating

This is an incredibly easy plateau to hit, and is essentially the MM hunter base rotation. Even if using the Glyph of Chimera Shot, we probably will always have enough haste to be at this plateau. This is also one of the reasons the chimera glyph is so attractive to starting MM hunters — we can gain the benefit of more Chimera Shots (provided we don’t delay at all) without altering our rotation.

MM Hard Plateau 2

The second MM hard plateau is 4 Steady Shots, 3 Arcane Shots, and 1 Chimera Shot in 10 seconds (9 seconds with the Chimera Shot glyph).
This requires a Steady Shot cast time of 1.5 seconds without the glyph, and 1.25 seconds with the glyph.

No t11, no glyph With t11, no glyph No t11, with glyph With t11 and glyph
3.335% haste Already there 24.002% haste 11.602% haste
428 haste rating 0 haste rating 3,074 haste rating 1,486 haste rating

It’s theoretically possible for MM to maintain a rotation of 4 steadies and 3 arcanes between Chimera Shots; however, it’s far more likely to happen with higher haste ratings, and thus be obtainable only by those glyphing Chimera Shot. However, the other factor that comes in here is instant Aimed Shot procs — those can take the place of an Arcane Shot in the rotation and help to balance out a slow bleed of a slightly focus-negative rotation.

MM Hard Plateau 3

The third MM hard plateau is 5 Steady Shots, 3 Arcane Shots, and 1 Chimera Shot in 10 seconds (9 seconds with the Chimera Shot glyph).
This requires a Steady Shot cast time of 1.2 seconds without the glyph, and 1.0 seconds with the glyph.

No t11, no glyph With t11, no glyph No t11, with glyph With t11 and glyph
29.169% haste 16.252% haste 55.003% haste 39.502% haste
3,736 haste rating 2,082 haste rating 7,044 haste rating 5,059 haste rating

This final MM haste plateau is the lovely point where we can reliably get five steady shots and three arcane shots between our chimeras. This plateau is pretty much only attainable without the chimera glyph — we need the extra breathing room to squeeze the extra shots in, and it’s worth it to drop the glyph if you can reach this plateau.

With the Glyph of Chimera Shot we’d actually need to bring our cast time all the way down to the global cooldown to manage this hard plateau!

How MM Haste Plateaus Affect Reforging

Haste is a fairly decent stat for MM hunters, that combos well with our mastery (and our mastery recently got a bit worse, due to aimed shot hardcasting during Careful Aim). In general haste is worth reforging into if it will bring you to a new hard plateau — the boost to your dps at hitting a plateau is great. But if you can’t reach a plateau, continue to reforge into crit, which is another stat that combos with many MM talents (though if your raid buffed crit is over 45% it becomes less attractive).

To be clear, more haste will always help you, it just won’t help you as much, depending on your position in the MM haste plateaus. Here are the rules of thumb:

  • If you can reach a new plateau (or get very close) by reforging into haste, then reforge into haste.
  • If you cannot get near a new plateau, reforge into crit.
  • Do not gem for haste, continue to gem for agility, unless a socket bonus makes it logical to gem for agility/haste.

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  1. Deepfriedegg says:

    Frost, I believe you have copy + paste typos there:
    “This requires a Cobra Shot cast time of 1.75 seconds without the glyph, and 1.5 seconds with the glyph.”

    Should be Steady Shot ;)

    • Kale says:

      Hallo got a question how can u have a steady shot of 1 sec cast time arent you against the global cooldown then ?? and btw is this with the proc of steady shot?? and if you wanna burst what gives a 40 % haste arent you under the global cooldown ?? :)

  2. Saberos says:

    It might be me, but isn’t 4 Steady Shots, 3 Arcane Shots, and 1 Chimera Shot in 10 seconds with t11 focus negative? You’d only be casting that if you’ve had a MMM proc.

    I have t11 and no glyph, and a lot more haste than the indicated cap you calculated for that rotation (958 + 3/3 pathing). I haven’t checked it ingame, but Zaherah is showing me when using a 4 Steady Shots, 3 Arcane Shots, and 1 Chimera Shot in 10 I’m losing about 25 focus. Only when using 5 Steady Shots and 2 Arcane Shots I get a focus positive rotation.

    High chance I’m wrong, I usually don’t worry too much about the exact calculations and the resulting focus after a rotation. But just a thing I found a bit odd.

    • Saberos says:

      I hate it when I start reading more closely after posting… just ignore that.

    • Deepfriedegg says:

      Actually you are right, CS, 4SS, 3AS rotation is VERY focus negative (over 20) and you would basically need Aimed Shot proc every cycle which is not possible. As such, this cannot be considered as a rotation. If there is a rotation with 7 shots between CS, then it is 5 SS + 2 AS. It will be altered with 4SS, 2AS, 1 AiS! rotation. This rotation is slightly positive (a bit over 7) so in non changing conditions, you will be able to swap 1 SS for 1 AS once a minute.
      Basically it will develop into something like this over course of 1 minute:
      2-3x: CS, 5 SS, 2 AS
      2-3x: CS, 4 SS, 2 AS, 1AiS!
      1x: CS, 4 SS, 3 AS

      In any case, I would like to see your maths over this, Frost and how you can reason sustainability of your rotation.

      • Frostheim says:

        Keep in mind that you’re increasing your base focus regen not just for your haste, but for all your haste-like effects. But yeah, it’s nets a negative and depending on your master marksman proc rate, you’ll sometimes have to slip in an extra steady to compensate.

      • Deepfriedegg says:

        My calculations were a bit wrong, I counted roughly 5 fps regen, in fact regen would be 5.24 fps. That doesnt change much: CS, 4 SS, 3 AS (1-4-3 from now on) is -18. CS, 5 SS, 2 AS (1-5-2) is much better: + 16. Like that you would have to alter these two to maintain balance – that is without AiS procs. Given that you cant influence when MMM procs, on average you would do 1-4-3 rotation each 4th cycle, 1-5-2 each fourth cycle and 1-4-2-AiS! every other cycle. I wouldnt necessarily adjust my haste around rotation that I would maintain in 25% of approximately 60% of boss encounter.
        Just my opinion.

      • Killian says:

        For those wondering, the haste plateau for a 1-5-2 (with t-4 and the Chimera glyph) rotation is 9.9%, assuming you have 3/3 Pathing. Credit to Whitefyst for the math on this one.

      • Frostheim says:

        Killian… I may be misinterpreting, but I don’t think that’s right. If you mean 1 chimera, 2 arcane, and 5 steady, that requires a steady cast time of: 1.2 seconds, with the chimera shot glyph (1.4 seconds *without* the glyph).

        Assuming t11, raid buffs, & 3/3 pathing (which is different from all the math above, which is 2/3 pathing) you would need 15.123% haste. Without the chimera glyph and with the t11 set, you’re already there.

      • Ormorio says:

        ive found that one of the most simple and focus neutral rotations after careful aim range is simply 2 steady shot, chimera shot, 2 steady shot, hard cast aimed shot, /repeat. There is a point where it is actually 3 steady shots because you’re about 10 focus short but other than that this rotation is giving me about 19k dps for phase 2 alone and my focus never goes above 60.

      • Whitefyst says:

        @Killian and @Frost

        The 9.9% value quoted is not my actual recommendation for the amount of haste for what I consider the ideal rotation during the Standard phase (80% to 25-20% boss health) unhasted. It was just a intermediate value at one situation.

        My actual haste from gear only recommendation for performing a CS-ASx2-SSx5 rotation with the T11 4-set, 3/3 Pathing, and the CS glyph is 10.52%.

        It is true as Frost stated in his reply that this rotation requires 15.12% haste from gear to be a tight 9s, but that is not ideal for the following reasons:
        – Gearing up to 15.12% haste from gear is costly for most hunters currently and is probably a DPS loss with some of that haste better spent on crit.
        – It does not include the impact of MMM AI procs, which should be occuring on average roughly every other cycle.
        – It does not factor in the optimal shot with which to replace the MMM AI proc.

        As it happens, the CS-ASx2-SSx5 rotation is focus positive and enough so that it is best to replace the 5th SS which is not needed for ISS uptime to maximize DPS. If you had 15.12% haste from gear, this replacement results in about a 0.2s deadtime in your cycle before CS come off CD, which is wasted time and wasted haste rating.

        Thus, I recommend 10.52% haste from gear. At this value, your SS casts are just under 1.25s. Thus, on cycles without an MMM AI proc, you will end up delaying your CS cycle by about 0.25s, which is not ideal but is not bad either. Then on every other cycle with an MMM AI proc, you eliminate that extra 0.25s by replacing the 5th SS with the MMM AI, resulting in a tight rotation. This is a much better option in my opinion that provides a good rotation and allows you to make better use of 4.6% haste in crit instead.

        A further benefit of this amount is in the Kill Shot phase unhasted. In the Kill Shot phase, that 5th SS in the unhasted rotation should now be replaced almost every cycle with either the MMM AI proc or a KS. Once cycles where both occur, then an AS is replaced as well. This results in the 10.52% gear case providing a tight 9s CS cycle almost every cycle during the KS phase.

        Thus, the 10.52% haste from gear setup is a good option since it provides a tight (or close to it) 9s CS cycle over about 80% of the fight when you are unhasted. But how does it stack up the rest of the time?

        In both the Standard and KS phases when under RF, the recommended rotation is CS-AIx2-SSx5, with MMM AI procs replacing the 5th SS. This is a tight 9s rotation with only 6% gear on haste. The extra 4.5% with the suggested 10.52% haste just results in about 0.15s deadtime in the rotation, which is nice for accounting for inefficiencies. This is not ideal, but not bad, especially considering that with blowing your first RF during the CA phase, only a small portion of these phases will be under RF.

        This same rotation is also suggested during Bloodlust in the Standard and KS phases. The first difference from the RF case is that it requires 9.22% haste from gear for a tight 9s rotation, meaning that having 10.52% results in just under 0.1s deadtime in the cycle. It also is a slightly focus negative cycle, even with MMM AI procs replacing an AI hardcast in the cycle, but that is not a big deal since most of the other cycles are focus positive. If you do get low in focus during a BL, you can just do an extra SS on cycles where you cast an MMM AI proc since you will have additional deadtime on those.

        During the CA phase, AI has the priority so we are no longer trying to cast CS off CD. Having 10.52% haste over lesser amounts just provides some additional leeway for refreshing SrS before it falls off.

  3. Arinvar says:

    Just for clarity in regards to hard plateau 3, you say we need a cast time of 1.2 seconds but also that we need haste rating of 2082. With appropriate buffs ticked on zeherah’s haste calculator it shows that we only get a 1.32 second cast time.

    Is this 2082 haste rating (t11, no glyph) the point where you can push back your Chimera Shot without losing DPS?

    • Frostheim says:

      Nope, it’s a hard plateau. I’m guessing you’re missing some buffs — here’s what we have there:

      – t11 4-piece bonus
      – 10% attack speed buff
      – 15% imp steady buff
      – 2% pathing

  4. Dexxz says:

    why don’t you take 3/3 pathing?

    • Lolbroek says:

      Most likely because 3/3 Frenzy beats 3/3 Pathing

      • Kalven and Hobs says:

        Situationaly. If you have high latency like myself, every bit of haste is critical. 3/3 Frenzy is also dependent on high pet time-on-target. I do use 3/3 Frenzy with SV, given it’s forgiving rotation, but when MM, I really want that extra haste.

        But I don’t really think of Pathing as extra haste. It’s more like 128 extra minor stats.

  5. Omogon says: brain hurts. This will take me a while to “absorb”….thanks for the work

  6. knuff says:

    Don’t get this.
    At the last week raid I suddenly drop my DPS. SV hit me hard. A friend played SV with item level 352 and did the same DPS as I did with t11 4set bonus and item level 356. I tested SV and did 3000 more dps than MM and I used the 4 Steady Shots, 3 Arcane Shots, and 1 Chimera Shot … And on extra haste, blodlust, RF etc… steady and AiM… It’s really stranger. Only think I know is that I change from 3 in pathing and used Frost… spec idea. But 3000-4000 DPS loss and my AV did more. I don’t get it, MM should be like 1000-2000 better than SV tight? And I surly did stand still, it was at Chimeraon and I have a nice position so I don’t move that often at all.

    Any one else heaving this strange problem?

    • Deepfriedegg says:

      It was Chimaeron?
      Problem most likely solved. Everytime you get hit by Caustic Slime , you get 75% miss chance debuff for 2.5 seconds. That means your SS will not regenerate any focus, your Chimera will not refresh SpS (along with wasted focus) and so on. If you had been hit significantly more by this and if you didnt watch out not to use CS / AiS when the debuff was on you, your DPS may be really that much low.
      Also, what do you call nice position? Was it behind the boss (so that you had to run through the boss to stack on Feud)? Or is it in front of the boss (so that all MM shots are affected by 5% block chance)? SV doesnt care that much if they are in fron of the boss: ES, SpS and BA all cannot be blocked

      You could easily have 20% miss/block chance of CS/AiS and that hurts a lot. A log would answer that question

      • knuff says:

        That might explain it all. I was in front off. Thank you, did not notice all this. I was like HU? why so low DPS suddenly I own this boss before. :D But that’s the thing, did I have luck all other tries?

      • Deepfriedegg says:

        well, I dont know if lucky. Just it is tripple RNG: 1) will you get many caustic Slimes? 2) If yes, will you shoot hard hitters during the debuff? 3) If yes, will they miss?

  7. Lolbroek says:

    Chimearon gives you this
    If you would be aflicted by it while doing your hard hitting shots you loose out on a lot of dps.
    Best way to deal with this is to closely watch if you have the debuff on you.
    If so just cast your lowest dps shot —-> Steady Shot.
    In the worst case scenario it misses, but it means you did not waste any focus or cooldown on a higher dps shot.

    • Justa says:

      Pretty much this.

      If i get Caustic Slime i tend to just steady shot and kill command, even as MM, rather than waste focus on high dps shots that will miss.

  8. Dorianchika says:

    Hmmm, looks like all we need to test this live at the dummies is a couple pets, a SV buddy and some drums. I’m curious to see how MM Hard Plateau 2 compares with SV Soft Plateau 2. Any logical conclusions or buffs critical to making this a fair comparison at the dummies folks?

  9. Slugslinger says:

    on “MM Hard Plateau 3” wont you get more dmg out it theory if you swap out the last one of the Steady shots for a cobra shot, since on most bosses cobra hits harder and it has the same cast time as steady and if you do a 2x steady > 1x cobra > 2x steady > 3x Arcane > 1 Chimera, since from what i have seen the 10% extra from the steady shot glyph still dont make it hit as hard as a cobra and as long as you do your steady shots in pairs you will still have the haste buff for just as long and get the same amount of shots in.

    • Frostheim says:

      It’s an interesting question, and I’ll have to run the numbers sometime. Keep in mind that MM has the following things boosting the benefit from their Steady Shot, above and beyond Imp Steady Shot, all of which need to be taken into account:

      – Steady Shot Glyph
      – Piercing Shots make Steady Shot crits do 30% additional damage
      – Each Steady Shot has a change to proc the Master Marskman stacking effect

  10. Evlson says:

    I just dinged 85 about 14 played hours ago, im sitting at 1045 haste just sitting, and about 2905 self buffed. Im currently pulling about 11-13k dps and 15k dps and peaks on boss fights. I’ve commited completely to pure haste…Gear wise, Reforging, Gemming, and Enchanting. I’ve only got 1 peice of my Pre-Raid gear thats on my wishlist for my haste set. My current rotation consists of starting fights with 2AiS! to dump my focus, then 2SS, serpentsting, then SS back up to around 75-80 focus and hardcasting AiS! . When it comes time to Bloodlust and pop all CD’s i make sure im at 4 stacks of MMM with 80 focus then i pop Rapidfire and just AiS! till all focus is gone then 2SS and keep dumping focus on AiS! I rarely ever use AS because of the way I play. I hope i came of some help. And hope to get some help as well.

  11. Killian says:

    @Frost (for some reason I can’t see a Rely button to your reply).

    Your math is spot on, I was skipping a few steps to get to the 9.9 number. I’ll simply quote Whitefyst directly (from EJ) since I don’t want to take credit for his work:

    “Hence, about 15.12% haste from gear is needed for this to be a tight rotation. The focus regen requirement in this case is 88 – 5 * 9 = 43 focus or 4.8 FPS or less than 1% haste from gear. Thus, although this rotation is sustainable, it is not really an optimal use of resources and requires a lot of haste. Plus, cycles with an MMM AI proc should replace the 5th SS with the AI, which results in 0.2s deadtime before CS comes off CD. The total haste from gear to support both cycles is 11.4%.

    With the haste requirements being a little on the high end, one option is to lower the haste to reduce the deadtime on the MMM AI proc cycles and to have a small delay in CS cast. To constrain this case, let’s roughly eliminate the 0.2s delay and make the CS cycle last 0.25s extra. This results in:

    6.25x = 6.9074
    x = 1.1052

    Hence, about 10.52% haste from gear is needed for this to be a tight rotation. The focus regen requirement in this case is 88 – 5 * 9 = 43 focus or 4.65 FPS or less than 1% haste from gear. Adding in the cycles with an MMM AI proc replacing the 5th SS with the AI, results in about 0 deadtime before CS comes off CD. The total haste from gear to support both cycles is 9.9%. This is both feasible and sustainable.”

    So 9.9% haste ends up with a slightly looser, but focus-positive, rotation.

  12. Ril says:

    thanks a lot for these guides. they’re very helpful and save SO much time.
    thanks again

  13. shlayerhk says:

    I believe i know the answer but the numbers you give are haste from just gear alone correct?

  14. Azkas says:

    so question:
    if you can’t reforge in to crit on the gear is it still worth it to reforge in to mastery instead of keeping the haste?
    (this ofc is if you aint able to get close to the next haste plateau)

  15. Pooky says:

    Frost, in your talent build you take 2/3 pathing, my question is this: is it worth it to change that to 3/3 pathing in order to hit a hard plateau? The amount of haste needed becomes very high to hit that 3rd plateau and im wondering if taking that extra pathing become more valuable if it pushes you to a hard plateau.

  16. Aelerokos says:

    On the reforging guide you recommended reforging out of haste for MM hunters, might wanna change that.

  17. gsmith411 says:

    Frost, Quick question that pertains to all 3 of your haste guilds. I found a website, that shows you what to reforge to what to get you some given stats. You can enter in the stats you want, and it will recommend which pieces of gear to reforge to get those stats. I entered in that I wanted Hit at 961 and Haste at 758 (just gear with no reforging my haste is at 1024, so I am above first platau but way below second). I put all rest of points into Crit. the website gave me some recommendations which I entered into femaledwarf to see how it would help and it raised my dps by about 120dps.
    Is this a good way to handle reforg? max out hit and haste, dump rest into crit and don’t worry about mastry?

    • Kalven and Hobs says:

      I’m no Frost, but I do have an answer. Getting to or just over 961 hit is still standard, but chasing a haste cap is not. If all you did with reforging is balance hit, you’d be just fine. From there, reforging out of mastery (which is not bad, just not as good) into either haste or crit will be a DPS increase. Reforging from haste into crit or vice versa is where it gets into some serious hair splitting. Which is fun.

  18. walmann says:

    Hi, Frost,

    First of all, thanks for your great job. I have been learning to play a hunter by reading your posts. Below are some of my questions.

    1. How the 0.5 delay affects the rotation? My Steady shot is 1.4 s. But it takes me about 8s to shoot five SS. Is it because of the .5 delay. “Essentially, ranged attacks in World of Warcraft have always had a built in 0.5 second delay to their cast time. Since this does not apply to instant attacks, for hunters it only really applies to Aimed Shot, Steady Shot and Cobra Shot. Prior to the 4.0.6 changes, Aimed Shot was listed with a 3.0 cast time, but due to the delay, in reality it had a cast time that amounted to 3.5 seconds. Now that it is listed at 2.4 seconds, the actual cast time is now closer to 2.9, which is where we want it to be.”

    2. When testing on dummy, my Sting>CS>Aim>SS rotation did about 1k more dps than Aim>SS*2>Aim rotation. I tested for numerous times. Standard rotation always beat the Aim > SS one. Will it be different on a boss instead of a dummy?

    Thanks in advance

    • Killian says:

      Dummy testing will skew things in favor of Aimed Shot because Careful Aim will always be active, making your crit (and Piercing Shot damage) really substantial. If you look at a graph of MM damage over time, it spikes considerably in the beginning of the fight. By way of example, in an Argolath fight where I end up doing ~20k dps, I’ll start out the fight around 35k (without Heroism).

      The .5 delay comment caused a lot of confusion for Cobra and Steady shots. Hunters have long simply assumed that the tooltip was wrong and understood that Steady has a 2.0 second cast time. I’d bet your delay is either lag or reaction time/ability queue.

  19. thrist says:

    Hey Frost thank for the work, as Ive read all the haste post I sit here and wonder WHAT IS HARD AND SOFT PLATEUS (Not Yelling just expressing my frustration from being extremely overworked ) So if someone could explain that for me so my already fried out brain can comprehend ::: Thanks

  20. walmann says:

    I just done BH boss 25N. My overall dps on BH boss is around 23k. My crit rating is around 35% with buffs. SS 1.2s, AiS 2s without Rapid Fire
    AiS (crit): 57k (hit) 25k
    Auto 7.4k on average
    SS (crit) 11.5k (hit) 5.4k, 7.4k on average.
    CS 34k on average
    WQ: 6.7k 27% proc
    AS: 12.7k on average
    Sting DoT 785 per second
    KS: 3 shots 30k on average

    1. I get to Hard Plateau 2 if using glyph of Chimera and Plateau 3 if not using it. Assuming the fight is 6 minutes (360 seconds). If I don’t use glyph, I will shoot 36 CS. If I use glyph, I will shoot 40 CS. 4 CS = 4*34k = 136k. If I don’t use glyph, I would have an additional SS each circle, which would be 36 SS totally in the whole 6 minutes. 36 SS = 36*7.4k = 266.6k. This is 130.4k gain in 6 minutes fight / 262 dps gain. Obviously not using glyph is better. But is not using glyph of chimera, which one I should use?

    2. Duing the 30 seconds Rapid Fire, I would only use AiS and SS since my AiS is only around 1.4s. Outside the Rapid Fire but above 80%, using the Sting>CS>AiS>SS will do less dps than AiS>SS only. Assuming there is enough focus, my AiS is 2.2s and 95% crit. 57k*130%=64.1k. In 2.2s, I can shoot a CS and a SS (1.2s) plus 2.2s ticks of Sting DoT: 34k+11.5(95% crit)+0.785*2.2=48.227k. 64.1k – 48.227k = 15.88k dps gain.
    However, what I dont understand is when I shoot on dummy, Sting>CS>AiS>SS always did much more dps (1-1.5k) than AiS > SS, which is contrary to the fight on real boss.

    2, When under 80%, my AiS will have 35% crit. Average AiS will be (57k*35 + 25k*65)/100 = 36.2k. 36.2k*130% (piercing) = 47k. So my AiS can do 47k in 2.2s. My AS in 2.2s = 12.7k*2.2 = 28k. AS is far less than AiS. It is about 19k loss every circle assuming one AiS every 10s circle, which is 1.9k dps. Even though there would be 3 AS under Plateau 3, it is still a 0.63k dps loss. Note that under plateau 3, I probably can shoot one AiS and one AS instead of 3 AS, which will just push CS back for 0.2s. There are a lot of situations in which we have to keep moving and have to use AS. But if I can use AiS, I will still prefer AiS. You have to be familiar with the fights to know when you got to move, and when you can shoot AiS. Also, the higher your haste rating is, the more likely you will benefit from AiS.

    All the above are theoretical, I don’t know its right or not.

    • walmann says:

      My bad. In the last paragraph, I forgot to add auto shot and WQ to 2.2s AS. 2.2 As + Auto Shot + WQ = 28k + 7.4k + 6.7k*27% = 37.2k, which is about 10k lower than AiS in a 10s circle. But in reality, I may shoot one AiS and one AS, 47k + 12.7k = 59.7k in 3.2s. If instead, I shoot three AS, 12.7k*3 + (7.4k (auto) + 6.7k*27%)/2.2*3 = 50.6k. About 9k difference per 10s circle.

  21. Kirk says:

    I would think these inflection points could be quickly determined with Calculus. If the equations can be written out algebraically, just take the derivatives.

  22. Valilor says:

    Hi Frost,

    I’ve been playing around on for a while now and with the Chimera Shot Glyph, no T11 bonus I need 428 to get to the 1st plateau or 3,074 to the 2nd (not going to happen!). When I reforge in/out of haste, it seems I still get big gains up to around 900/1000 ish and when I dump a lot for mastery/crit and get down to just over 428 it’s a DPS loss.


    I was also wondering what the 3,074 would come down to if I put an extra point into pathing?

    Another strange thing is that it is also telling me it’s always a benefit to hard cast Aimed Shot outside of the Careful aim section – I thought that’s when you’re meant to revert back to Arcane Shot? (409 DPS difference) The Arcane glyph is also a DPS loss vs. Aimed Shot glyph in both scenarios.

  23. Kalee says:

    I am having trouble at the Hard Plateau 2 I am sitting at a static 1264 haste rating. I have yet to get to the 1.5 second cast time of steady shot. I am 3/3 pathing and 3/3 imp steady shot. If your numbers are correct I should have a steady shot of 1.5 or faster but my steady shot is only at 1.54 excluding rapid fire which with rapid fire drops it to 1.1 sec cast time. My only thoughts is that these numbers are slightly off or swapped about

    “No t11, no glyph With t11, no glyph No t11, with glyph With t11 and glyph
    3.335% haste Already there 24.002% haste 11.602% haste
    428 haste rating 0 haste rating 3,074 haste rating 1,486 haste rating”
    the No t1, no glyph should be 1486 and the with t11 and glyph should be the 428

    Please correct me if I am wrong but I am only basing it off of what I currently have going with steady shot at 1.54 seconds this could all because I am missing the 10% haste buff as well but I am not quite smart enough to figure that out.

    • Frostheim says:

      From the article: “Note that all of these calculations assume that you have the 10% attack speed raid buff, Improved Steady Shot up, as well as 2/3 in the Pathing talent. ”

      Without the 10% haste buff, you will obviously need more haste. If you’re at 1.54-second steady now, with the haste buff it would be 1.4 seconds.

      • Kalee says:

        arrrgg I see what I was doing wrong I was going off the current speed shown on the steady shot at 1.77 and then taking off 40% of the speed I have been pounding my head on the keyboard since your guide came out. thanks. Man I hate relying on other people to buff me…

  24. Freakz says:

    Hello FRostheim i just wanna ask … about this things…i dont understand what is it

    No t11, no glyph With t11, no glyph No t11, with glyph With t11 and glyph

    no glyph means? steady shot glyph? does the glyph effect our haste?

    • Spacegoat Express says:

      Glyph of Chimera Shot reduces the CD by 1 second, making the rotation have 9 seconds between Chimeras instead of 10 seconds.

  25. Kicker says:


    Encuentro que no sois derecho. Puedo demostrarlo. Escriban en PM.

  26. Dagray says:

    @ Those wondering why Survival Hunters are kicking the crap out of MM hunters in certain cases:

    1. SV is much more pliable when it comes to inefficiencies. Because of this, it will generate more DPS for the average player than MM even though MM has a higher potential for the best player(s) in wow.

    2. On bosses where there is AOE, SV will likely come out on top when being played w/ equal skill + gear. *Note: This may change if you’re playing at heroic levels due to increased skill and increased weapon dps.

    3. MM is effected by raid debuffs such as Chimaeron’s Slime much more than SV. This is due to SV almost constantly shooting Cobra shot and MM shooting more arcane, aimed or chimera shots. Because of this, you need to either play SV on this boss (not recommeded due to MM self heal) or watch your debuffs carefully and be certain to use steady shot during the slime debuff. Some players have immense luck w/ BM on this boss, given carefully planned BW.

    4. If you’re raiding in a 10m, you’re most likely going to get more dps out of SV than MM. This isn’t true for every single boss, but due to the fact that MM is so dependant on buffs it’s true more often than not. Not only will you probably get more dps out of SV but you’ll also find that it’s much easier to move, avoid damage and generally stay out of the muck when your rotation is so simpler and there are no buffs to keep up through careful timing.

  27. devourer says:

    Hi was just wondering why this was so. My hunter is at 16.45% haste and only has 1,814 haste rating. I’m working with the 2/3 pathing. I was wondering if I should follow the haste rating or the haste % to reach the last haste plateu. Thanks!

  28. Sporek says:

    I havent quite figured out how a Hunter can get 3 arcance shots off with 4 piece t11 and glyph of chimera shot. By that time is your haste regeneration high enough for it? and if so what does that rotation look like? 2 ss, 2 arcance, 2ss, arcane, chimera? I’m confused. can someone help me out. I currently have a haste rating of 1515 (11.83%) and have 4 piece t11 and the glyph of Chimera. Please, SOMEONE, help me out? And will this increase my dps from the first haste plateau?

  29. Bara says:

    for the tier 2 plateau – if u have 4 pc T11 and no CS glyph we’re ‘already there’ for haste. so, does that mean that any haste other than that on our T11 pieces should be reforged to Crit or Mastery if there’s no chance to make the next plateau??


  30. george says:

    i have now 1806 crit 1372 haste and 705 mastery. with female dwarf i can gain 250-300 dps with 1982 crit 968 haste and and 932 mastery. more haste and less mastery = less dps. more mastery and less haste = less dps.
    i dont know how much haste i need. with 1372 i do more damage with aimed hardcast! please give me a tip.

  31. george says:

    i have the 4t11

  32. george says:

    Please can you say me what is better:
    Plateau 1 with T4 & glyphe
    Crit 1942 Mastery 1303
    Plateau 2 (Haste ~1500)
    Crit 1793 Mastery 609 ?

    Thank you :-)

  33. george says:

    i have run fd with my gear for
    plateau1: haste 648 crit 1942! mastery 1303!
    plateau2: haste 1500! crit 1793 mastery 609
    over 6-7 minutes, no ks ca ranges no rapid fire…
    and correct the shotcount for cs ss procs for this models:
    plateau1: 1 CS 4 SS 2 PROC
    plateau2: because i cant play 1 CS 4 SS 3 PROC, too i choose
    2-3x: 1 CS 5 SS 2 PROC
    2-3x: 1 CS 4 SS 3 PROC
    1x: 1 CS 4 SS 3 PROC
    is sumary = 1 CS 4,33 SS 2,67 PROC

    result plateau1:
    244 Autoshots 55 CS 219 SS 197 WQ 89 Arkane 21 Aimed 480 Piercing 1 Sting
    7.616.899 Damage / 451 Sek = 16.880 DPS
    451 Sek = 164 cs procs * 1,0 Sek + 219 SS * 1,3149 Sek

    result plateau2:
    261 Autoshots 50 CS 217 SS 153 WQ 110 Arkane 24 Aimed 480 Piercing 1 Sting
    7.547.520 Damage / 451 Sek = 16.725 DPS
    451 Sek = 183 cs procs * 1,0 Sek + 217 SS * 1,2366 Sek

    so plateau 1 & 2 are near with damage. but i think plateau 1 is much more easyier to play? can anyboby confirm this? or is there a bug in my calc and plateau 2 must be better?

  34. george says:

    or is plateau2 better if i play without cs gpyhpe? help :(

  35. confused says:

    I have a question about this. I was at 14.45 haste without tier 11 pieces and had my SS cast time at 1.67 after reading this I was over the plateaus for haste for 1 and 2 but if my SS cast remind at 1.67 without raid buffs should I lower my haste because when I was shown with just windfury I was sitting at around 23% haste and when ISS proc I think I was at 27 or 28 but I do know for a fact my steady shot was casting less than a second.

    • Frostheim says:

      If you’re steady shot was under a second, that means you either had Rapid Fire or Ancient Hysteria going on — not a normal situation : )

  36. márki says:

    Hey Frost,first time posting on here ^^ gotta say thou my hunter years ive used this site and its always put me above most on the dps infact its actully put me at top dps every raid with my guild and other guilds in pugs.But for the first time in my WoW playing im stuck… i stay MM? or do i go back to my trusted old SV spec of wich when every one went MM i refused to change and yet still sitting at top of the dps. ive found MM crazy for burst dps at hitting that all crazy 40k with Cds (not maintaned ofc) but with these nerfs my MM seems poor almost 2k dps loss So would please help MM or SV? if so why ^^ i know you wont let me down cheers marki.

  37. Alkurimm says:

    Hey, been playing hunter for 4.5 years… Played Marks and survival mostly (Hate BM, think its trash) I’m currently 3/7 in Firelands (Would be 4/7 but I was having computer problems the night we got alysrazor but oh well) and I figured since marks scales better than survival and our enhance shaman is applying 10% haste anyways, I may as well go marks since my iLvl in raid gear was at about 363 which I think is substantial enough to put marks a slight bit ahead of survival… The only thing, I had no f***ing clue what I was doing! Ugh, haven’t played marks since ICC when hunters still had mana. This guide got me up to 26k DPS on chim again, thanks for the hard work. :) I’m really astounded by how high our DPS can get at the beginning of a fight… For example on gate keeper I’m last in the shard rotation so I have enough time to use rapid fire and cotw at the beginning and then use readiness (As usual, with a pre-pot of course) and using the simple careful aim rotation of SS and AiS, I was reaching peaks of friggin 34k each attempt. Great job, but is it realistic to assume anybody would be reaching the third haste plateau? Assuming you don’t have the T11 4 set anymore, and you do not have the glyph (I’m currently running arcane, steady, kill shot glyphs) and Im only at the second plateau which seems to be focus negative…

  38. Tenzi says:

    Ok, now I have a question.
    Wouldn’t it take more haste to meet the plateau with the glyph than without it seeing as with the glyph you have less time to shoot off the all the shots?

  39. Blue says:


  40. Johnny says:

    Thanks frostheim, this is an awesome guide and thanks for all the other ones you’ve written for hunters :) I have a question though, what would be the most logical way to reforge for marksmen?

  41. Will says:

    I have a big question although it sounds really stupid. I just came back to the game since 5% buff on LK and was wondering about the haste plateaus. I dont have 4/5 tier 11 but i do have the glyph, and with 428 haste rating i am NO where near 1.5 second steady shots. I’m sitting at 1.8 right now. Is there something I’m not calculating? If so all the help would be greatly appreciated

  42. Diosa says:

    I just got the tier12 two set bonus and I am at a total loss about what to do with my glyphs and my haste. Up the haste? Lower it? Remove chim glyph and replace with RF?
    Help Frostheim!

  43. Ragemonster says:

    Well, with our beloved T11 4 piece officially gone, its safe to say that there is a lot of confusion out there about haste and glyphs, here is what has been working for me:

    I changed around my haste so that I get a total of 12.93 total haste, this makes a SS cast time of 1.4 seconds, which was initially very odd to me.

    However, in a normal rotation, this will allow for:

    CS, AiS(Or two instants), 5 SS

    OR, if > 50 focus after your CS (Or generally high on focus)

    CS AiS+1 AS (or 3 instants), 4 SS

    This will allow for a VERY tight 10s CS rotation, it is also fairly focus balanced, due to AiS proc’s, ending up actually being moderately focus positive

    This will also bring your SS cast, under RF to right around 1 second, which is ideal.

    Glyphs: I choose to forgo using CS in favor of having a tight 10s rotation.

    Glyph of AS
    Glyph of SS
    Glyph of KS
    Glyph of Disengage
    X (Trap launcher)
    X (Feign is the only one I really find useful)

    The other good plateau for haste, which is worth mentioning, is at 5.4%

    This, I believe is the standard rotation for hunters (I haven’t tested as of 4.2, since I physically cannot get my haste that low without removing pieces of gear)

    Hope this helps some fellow hunters :P

    • LaP says:

      This is exactly what i’m doing right now.

      But this will probably change with the new tier.

      Instead of doing one AIS (or 2 when we get a proc) we will probably do 3 arcane show. The 2 piece bonus will probably gives us enough focus to do that. And doing 3 arcane shot will give us more chance to proc the 4 pieces bonus.

      When the 4 pieces bonus will proc we will probably hard cast AIS and ignore CS unless SS needs to be refreshed.

      The AIS glyph will probably become a very good options too.

      I might be wrong but this is the way i see it. I still don’t have the 2 pieces bonus though as i switched my main to my rogue as honestly i’m done with changing my rotation every new tier content because Blizzard is dumb.

  44. Ambev - Frostmane says:

    I’m wondering if on a fight like alysrazor would hard casting aimed shot be the way to go with the haste buffs and the casting while moving affect?

  45. Grilor says:

    Ragemonster you said you got your haste to 12.93 is that 12.93% or is that the haste raiting of 12.93%? with the new T12 i have to admint im kinda lost on haste too

  46. Zerocc - Uldaman says:

    Does the haste bonuses that we get from RF and ISS apply after the 10% increase in haste we get from other players, I.E. surv hunter/frost dk/shammy thats nice enough to drop haste totem teaming up with MM hunter. So lets say average haste no buffs no ISS is 1500 haste just from gear. So if I get 10% from whoever my haste should now be 1725. So if I pop RF with that buff on my haste should 2415. Now also does RF stack with ISS and vice versa same numbers using 1725 from the 10% increase from other raiders popping two SS to get ISS then using RF to stack on it my haste should be 2778. My math is working like so 1725 x 15% from ISS = 1984 x 40% from RF = 2778 rounding up. Just that I’ve been playing a lot with haste on my toon and yes I might be one of those few silly enough to try to go for the third plateau but I’m trying to figure out how the math works on this. Please tell me if any of this is either incorrect or am I just blowing smoke into my head. Btw appreciate all the hard work you’ve done for hunters!

    • Frostheim says:

      Every different haste source applies separately — thus haste stacks multiplicatively. Keep in mind that haste effects like hunting party give you a flat percentage of haste — not haste rating.

      Thus if you had 1,280 haste rating you’d have about 10% haste. If you also had the 10% hunting party buff you’d have 1.1 * 1.1 = 21% haste. You still have 1,280 haste rating, but you have 21% haste.

      All haste rating effects (gear) are one source. Every other haste source is applied separately. So 1,280 haste rating, 10% hunting party, and 15% Imp Steady Shot would give you a net effect of 1.1 * 1.1 * 1.15 = 39.15% haste.

  47. Sannhet says:

    So for these haste caps, if we don’t have the 10% haste buff in our raid, you simply add 10% to the cap and go for that?

  48. Rex says:

    I have read this very carefully and see that who calculated this must play another class other then a hunter. If you are playing a hunter tring to figure out what is better to use cast wise, Aimed Shot or Arcane (w\glyph) after Careful Aim proc. After raid buffs and stead buff, you want to even still hard cast Aimed Shot just as Chimera is just abou off CD so its timed just right. I don’t care how you spin it, you will lose huge amounts of damage with Arcane (even with glyph), Wild Quiver and Steady Shot’s inplace of. I run with the same gear and spec as the other MM huntes in the guild and do anywhere from 2-8k on every fight. We all have the same duties in every fight. He biggest problem that I have seen is they are all looking at sites just like these. After helping one for a few weeks I was able to bring him closer to the 30k range. Gladly now we are both above 27k on every fight.

    • LaP says:

      Hum i mostly do everything that can be read in Frostheim and i do very good damage. My best perf on Baleroc heroic was 34.8k dps. My best on Major heroic was 55.7k dps (top 77 MM or something like that on worldoflogs).

      I do close to 60k on Madness, do around 40k on that ping poing boss can’t recall the name and between 32 ans 34 on ultraxion depending on how much SS i miss because of fading and hot.
      Nothing elite but still good dps.

      The only thing missing in Frostheim guide imo is the 12.93% haste (getting your SS at 1sec during RF). This is mendatory imo with heroic 391 gears.

  49. Rex says:

    Take the time and use the test dummy. Without the raid buffs you should try to get all the DPS you can. Then, in the raids with all those great buffs you should be adding 5k-8k dps depending on the fight. These site are only suggestions.

  50. grilor says:

    Anyone ever use or to hlep them setup there reforging? i ask casue i looked in to them and both say 100% oppsing thoughts on on my gear LOL i dont rely totally on these kinda sites i just like to use them as a refrance

  51. Ohnoholms says:

    Still waiting for the t12 4 set additions to this.

  52. Kegon says:

    The T12 4er will only make the rotation less focus negativ.
    No changes about the haste u need

  53. Cosmicbaby says:

    I’m not sure when this was updated, but it seems most hunters now are finding that at high haste (For instance, I’m currently at 17.78% Haste, no chimera glyph) a CS>SSx2>Aimed>SSx2 Rotation yields a lot more DPS in fights where you don’t have to move very much.

  54. Spammér says:

    Hello all

    Got a question for u all, hob one can help me. I resently rolled a MM Hunter, by now he has ilvl 378 T12 2 set, and i have 3/3 pathing. Currently my haste rating is at: 1497 = 15.04%. atm i have cast time on ss (without imp ss) at 1.7s. With imp ss, it is at 1.5s.
    What i dont get is, am i on 2 hard platue or allmost at 3 hard platue?

    Roation is: Sting>CS>2xSS>AiM>2xSS>CS>2xSS… with this i do 20.7k steady dps on a raid dummy. Just me alone with no buff. Anything i should do diferent or am i doing okay?? If i proc everything, i can hit 25-28k dps as burst on same dummy.

  55. Ocarina says:

    I got a question i cannot seem to find answer to on google (posted this on another one of your threads, but seems it suits more in this thread)..

    When is it “best” to switch from SV to MM? With what ilvl is it most optimal to switch?
    Right now i am SV with ilvl 375, doing around 25-33k dps in heroic dungeons (depending on groups, and even higher dps sometimes if there are huge groups).
    This ofc is with 300 agility potion and 90 agility buff. Without it, im around 22k dps.

    I’m thinking to switch to MM, as i heard that with better gear it’s more optimal than SV, and with lower ilvl its better with SV than MM.. But ofc, i can’t find any answer to “prefered ilvl for MM”.

    Also, with MM, if i understand correctly – you reforge your haste into mastery? What is the optimal haste percentage in this case, if there even is one?

    Thank you :)

    • LaP says:

      It’s worth playing MM at 359 ilevel.

      I know people will tell you Surv is not that far. But from my own exp it is not really that close to MM.

      On fights requiring lot of movement and target switching you wont see much of a difference between both spec.

      But on gear check fights where you can stand still and hard cast aimed shot (Baleroc heroic) there’s no point playing Surv specially since for fights like these (gear check) 800 dps might be the difference between a wipe and a kill.

      Other fights to take into consideration are fights with damage increase. You can time your CDs (Readiness with RF and lower CD for RF) with that increased damage and the CDs are more powerful than Surv. You can’t time LnL procs. If it doesn’t proc in a damage increase portion of the fight then you’re screwed.

      I still have my Surv spec for aoe fights cause i think it’s more fun to play (laying down traps and using MM less frequently because of ss and higher focus cost).

      But for single target fights i don’t see the point of playing Surv even with 359 gears.

      That might not be true with last patch though did not check if Surv has been buffed i don’t play my huntard anymore i have a blast playing my rogue a class where i don’t have to change the way i’m playing it every new patch.

      And you can’t beat 20% AP even if Frostheim wont admit it.

  56. Ocarina says:

    Keep in mind btw that i do not raid anymore, so im mostly in heroic dungeons or random groups when raiding from time to time. So with that in mind, is it better for me to stay in SV, or still switch to MM??

  57. Ranas says:

    Will you be updating this anytime soon?

    seeing as we are on T13 gear I would be curious to see what haste plateaus an MM hunter should be looking at now.

  58. Anonymous says:

    I need the haste plateau for t13 2 and 4 pieces.

  59. Ceti says:

    Would love to know what the haste plateau is for the t13 2 and 4 pieces.

  60. hornett says:

    can someone explain the reason why we have to dump focus to me pls, just started playing again , and its all new to me .i was used to the old mana and keeping it full or nearly full, but i cant understand why we have to dump focus ..surely its good to have spare focus to fire off shots?..sorry if this is a dumb question

  61. Cent says:

    Hornet, you have a line under your health bar that you use like mana but you don’t ever want at full. Arcane shots dump focus yet you want to have enough to hit your cooldowns.
    I wish this was updated to t13 gear. I am now reforging haste for hit. Can’t believe MoP has a +180 hit cloack enchant when I need it now. The chest piece would make it all better. Do I ever gem for hit and sacrifice agility?

    • Cent says:

      I find the top slot belt to be a tough upgrade from the valor points belt, with + 172 haste and -140 hit respectively.