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Dear Hunter: on Game and Player

Dear Hunter:

Heather Richtmyre  //  October 27, 2009

Long time no play.


e's been sitting in Ashenvale for months, with only a pumpkin and some small animals for company. At this point, the pumpkin is solidly situated on his head and the pink tallstrider is running around hoping for a few berries from the orcs.

I should be playing him. Usually, I enjoy ranged weapons. My Oblivion character runs around with a bow, and I've spent much of my time in Halo 3 with a sniper or battle rifle. In my current Dungeons and Dragons game, I am playing a Tiefling scout. Admittedly, this is not the ideal race choice, but the campaign has enough elves already.

Still can't play a hunter. Not even a tauren one with twenty percent extra experience and carefully crafted rare gear. It would be much more enjoyable than, say, doing Argent Tournament dailies again, but I just can't get into it.

I think I'm starting to understand why I have such trouble getting into the play-style of a hunter.Recently, a friend pointed out to me that I only play stealth classes. While I'm not certain that a sniper or scout are truly stealth classes, they both do have some dependency on range and being less visible. Neither a bow or a long-barreled rifle are the most effective at short range, and unlike swords, have a reload time.

So, perhaps the lack of stealth is one reason I have difficulty with the World of Warcraft hunter. Pure damage-per-second classes in WoW tend to feel more constricting to me in general, and my attachment to my rogue comes more from a fondness for stealth than any inherent options in the class makeup.

Also, pets. Managing the position of my avatar in relation to enemy mobs is manageable, but when I add in another avatar that's only partially under my control, it's going to accidentally pull five extra lions and get me killed quite often.

Add in click-and-shoot mechanics that remove my ability to take down an enemy with a swift, satisfying shot to the head, and I think I'm starting to understand why I have such trouble getting into the play-style of a hunter.

Knowing that, maybe I can try playing him again, with a look at what aspects of the class attracted me to him in the first place. A high-level leatherworker could also be nice. Assuming that the poor guy can see well enough through his pumpkin to shoot or skin something, that is.

Michael Ubaldi // October 27, 2009 // 12:17 AM

Though I'm partial to the sturm und drang of plate DPS and tanking, neither leather nor cloth nor chain have given me reason to avoid their assigned classes.

The hunter, on the other hand, couldn't give me reason enough to play beyond level 10. I don't think I'll ever pick it up again.

Ed Kirchgessner // October 27, 2009 // 9:43 AM

Pet mechanics need to be drastically revamped before I go back to leveling my hunter. I love the idea of a non-magical ranged class, but the hunter's reliance on pets is downright frustrating. I'd love it if there could somehow be a hunter spec that completely removed pets from the equation -- perhaps someday traps could fulfill the same role...

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