Ghostcrawler had a post talking about PvP today and in that post (and a tweet) he mentioned that when they were investigating BM hunter burst being too high in arenas, they discovered that Stampede was doing four times as much damage as it should!
Here’s what he said:
We have just discovered a bug in which the debuff that makes Stampede pets weaker than normal pets was not being applied in Arenas. This helps explain why hunters could cause so much damage in Arenas but not in (say) the outdoor world or a dungeon environment.
If you’ll recall, Stampede was originally far, far better burst than it is now. But players wanted a longer duration, a shorter cooldown, and the ability to use it in arenas.
Blizzard gave hunters what they wanted and cut the cooldown in half and doubled the duration — but then dropped the actual dps of Stampede to just 25% of what is was to compensate: thus over the long haul the total damage is better, but in the short run it’s far less bursty.
Somehow the 75% reduced damage didn’t make it into Stampede when you were in an arena, but of course the longer duration and shorter cooldown did. Yikes! Now I really understand why people are complaining about BM hunter burst in pvp.
BM Too Much Burst
Many hunters will argue that BM does not have too much pvp burst, or that they need it to be competitive. They are wrong.
Ultimately the danger here is that a BM hunter has too many cooldowns that can be burned all at once to butcher almost any one opponent. The hunter pops Stampede, Bestial Wrath, A Murder of Crows, and Rapid Fire and then unloads, and almost anyone dies. If it’s a healer toss in a Silencing Shot and if they aren’t a pally they’re probably in trouble.
Really, the only possible defense against this is to have some kind of cooldown that eliminates taking damage for a while (or something like vanish). I mean, I’m not great at PvP these days, but when I can pop everything I can almost always kill my target doing nothing but firing arcane shot.
Blizzard says they don’t think it’s good design to be able to hit all your cooldowns and usually be able to kill your target, regardless of skill. I agree.
But — there’s a but.
My big concern here is that Blizzard is going to nerf BM based on being too bursty in addition to fixing the Stampede bug (which they have). So what we could end up with is another overnerf to BM. I hope not — and to be fair Blizzard has been getting better about not nerfing quite so heavily — but the danger is there.