Marksman 1-80 (Part 2: Detailed Marksman Talent Notes)

Continuing the Marksman 1-80 information... This time I'm going to go through the Marksman tree's talent options.

Detailed Talent Notes

Improved Concussive Shot: Dazing talents can be nice while soloing (easier kiting), but when they took the stun proc off Improved Concussive Shot, I dropped the points from the talent. The stun was its entire appeal to me. But if you don't like some of the talents I've taken, they're not terrible choices for leveling.

Focused Aim: Although you might not pick it up right away, this is worth getting especially after you pick up Steady Shot at level 50. While soloing, you're more likely to have something jabbing at you while you're trying to cast it. The 3% hit rating is good as well, especially at higher levels when you're trying to get hit capped.

Lethal Shots: 5% crit is a must. Your first talent points will probably going here.

Careful Aim: Another talent you'll want eventually (your intelligence will be a solid AP boost), even if you don't get it right away.

Improved Hunter's Mark: Depending how much you like Hunter's Mark, this will buff it and make it cost nothing. There are better places to put your talents.

Mortal Shots: Increased crit damage is good. You need this to get Aimed Shot. Marksman hunters are big on crit.

Go for the Throat: This talent will keep your pet growling (or boost its DPS), dependent partly on your crit rating for usefulness. You'll want it for soloing to help keep stuff off you and on your pet.

Improved Arcane Shot: This is a talent you'll want to pick up at some point for the DPS boost. Arcane will be part of your rotation.

Aimed Shot: A must in the Marksman world. A mortal strike debuff for PVP, an instant, still somewhat hard-hitting shot. (Admittedly, it crits at 80 for about what it did at 70 when it was still a 3-second cast. Our burst is gone, but you still want the shot.)

Rapid Killing: This talent is useful for leveling in the next-shot damage boost you get from killing something. It's useful at the higher levels for the 3-minute cooldown on Rapid Fire.

Improved Stings: Something you'll want eventually - increased Serpent damage is increased Chimera damage.

Efficiency: Efficiency is a much debated talent - soloing, you'll want it. If you end up raiding at higher levels with persistent replenishment buffs, you can probably drop it. (I still have it in my raiding spec.)

Concussive Barrage: See Improved Concussive Shot. Not bad for PVP, not bad for kiting. You can't daze much of anything in a raid environment, so it's pretty useless there.

Readiness: This used to be a Survival talent; when they took Scatter Shot from us, this is what we got instead. It is awesome. This is a spare trap, back-to-back Rapid Fires, double Kill Shots, an emergency Feign, or whatever else you suddenly find yourself needing that's on cooldown. Plus, you want Trueshot Aura, right?

Barrage: This is another much debated talent, along with its followup. Its usefulness is partially going to be determined by whether or not you're using Aimed Shot in your rotation. (You should be.)

Combat Experience: A nice, solid talent. The extra Agility and Int are always nice. If I ever freed up any points in either of my specs, this is where they would go.

Ranged Weapon Specialization: 5% more damage is 5% more damage.

Piercing Shots: The bleed is a nice damage boost, and it'll keep rogues from restealthing. ;) (It's not a magic effect - it can't be Cloaked.)

Trueshot Aura: 10% AP boost is great. Death Knights and Enhancement Shamans can proc an equivalent buff, but this is persistent, and always useful.

Improved Barrage: Like its prerequisite, a debated talent. I love it for the uninterruptible Volley, and the crit boost is solid.

Master Marksman: This used to be an AP buff; now it's 5% crit and cheaper Steady Shots. Go for it.

Rapid Recuperation: A good leveling talent in conjunction with Rapid Killing, and nice for raiding because of its Rapid Fire component. I like it.

Wild Quiver: This is a nice damage boost - nature damage, to boot, so I believe it's not affected by armor as much.

Silencing Shot: Nice for soloing and PVP, and since it's off the global cooldown, you can use it as an extra damage pop in raiding, too. Also nice for instances and such where you have a caster you want to pull closer.

Improved Steady Shot: Not a bad talent, although you'll get more of a DPS boost out of Wild Quiver. Better for raiding than soloing, where you'll be in combat long enough to both get and use the proc.

Marked for Death: A good DPS boost if you remember to use Hunter's Mark. If you don't get it for a soloing spec, you'll want it for a raiding spec.

Chimera Shot: This will be your hardest hitting shot when you get it (besides Kill Shot). This is why you want to buff Serpent Sting as much as possible - the Serpent proc will easily keep this shot doing 5-8k on crits at 80.

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