A Demon Hunter specializes in close-range combats engaging physical damage as well as damage by the magic of Chaos, Fel and – in a smaller proportion – damage by Fire. As it states in the name, the character knows a number of ways to track down, disarm and even destroy demons. It happened so that only the strongest members of the highest race – elves – were capable of passing the ritual to become Demon Hunters. Although, in theory, everyone could undergo these challenges. However, none of other races has ever managed to survive or keep their sanity. This is why, in the World of Warcraft, this class is only represented by two races – Blood Elves and Night Elves. Maybe someday today’s Illidari would find a way to share their craft of keeping hold of the magic of the Fel with the rest of the Azeroth inhabitants… It’s not like there is a huge demand for utilizing the perverting magic of the enemy, but all’s fair in war. So, who knows? In the next updates, we might get a chance to see, say, a Gnome or a Pandaren Demon Hunter
Let’s review the weak and the strong suits of this new class in its specialization Havoc:
- One of the strongest bursts on a single target in the game.
- Good sustained AoE.
- Extremely high mobility and a Double Jump.
- Thanks to its talents’ versatility, it’s capable of adapting to various affixes in mythic+ every week.
- A reasonable switch (target shift) with zero damage loss is possible.
- The incoming damage by magic is passively reduced by 10%
- Has a great survivability and it is also a saving ability as Darkness
- A chance to put debuff for 5% of magic damage on a target for all raid players
- Average damage and AoE apart from burst damaging gaps
Basic info on the spec:
Demon Hunter has one main resource – Fury. The whole gameplay is based on earning and correctly utilizing it.
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AoE (Area of Effect) is basically the area where this of that effect is actuated regardless of whether its damage or healing. This command is usually used to act in a team/raid on several targets. It is also used to describe any ability of a Boss with the aforementioned effect.
Buff stands for any positive effect. Always reflected to the left of the mini-map, by its upper edge.
Burst is an ability to do – in multiple ways – massive damage within a short period of time.
Gear is what it is.
GCD (Global Cooldown) is the overall ability recovery time.
Debuff stands for negative effect. By default, it’ reflected to the left of the mini-map by its lower edge.
DoT stands for Damage over Time.
DPS (Damage per Second) is a measure that reflects the damage done within one second.
Cleave is an ability to damage secondary targets through damaging the main one with no (or minor) loss in the damage done to the main target.
Cooldown (often CD) primarily refers to the ability recovery time. Can be often applied to bursts and various protective abilities.
Melee and Range. Melee is the close-range combat zone, also used in the titles of all the classes and specs that do effective damage in this zone. Range usually refers to a zone that is not a close-range one and is used, respectfully, in the titles of all classes and specs that do effective damage remotely.
Trait is a name for the ‘talents’ your azerite armor has.
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Demon’s Bite is the main Fury generator, generates 20-30 Fury per use and does light physical damage. Can be modified by the talent Demon Blades which makes your auto-attacks main Fury generator.
Utilizing Fury, and other offensive abilities:
Chaos Strike does damage by Chaos magic on a single target, spends 40 Fury but have 40% chance to restore 20 of your Fury. This one is the main Fury spender and does the biggest share of your dps on a single target. In Metamorphosis, it’s replaced with Annihilation which has the same properties but does more damage.
Blade Dance does AoE physical damage in three stages and provides a 10% chance of speeding up for 1 second. Demands 35 Fury. This one is the main AoE Fury spender, it is used per CD. In Metamorphosis, it is replaced with Death Sweep. Just like Chaos Strike, it simply does more damage. Do not forget there’s 100% dodge during Blade Dance.
Throw Glaive is the only range ability. It can be applied from 30m afar. A hit on the target would do minor physical damage, and the Glave may ricochet and do the same damage to two more targets. It is not used frequently; mostly when you’re out of Fury and you don’t have an opportunity to quickly get hold of some. Thanks to the talent Master of the Glaive, this ability becomes a 2-charge one. Besides that, a successful hit provides a reduction in the running speed of all the hit targets by 50% for 6 secs.
Eye Beam is a burst ability that does damage by Chaos magic to all the enemies within the 20m range in front of you. Demands 30 Fury, always does critical damage. Apart from its default damage, Modified by the talent Blind Fury which increases the cast’s duration and turns it into a great Fury generator as every second the ability is active you receive 40 Fury.
Metamorphosis is the main burst that significantly increases the damage you do. To utilize the ability, you need to choose a landing area. All the enemies will be stunned for 3 secs when you land. After the landing, thee second – and the main – part of the ability kicks in: you transform into a Demon, and your Chaos Strike and Blade Dance transform turn to Annihilation and Death Sweep, respectively. This modification increases the damage significantly. Plus, during Metamorphosis, your haste rating is 25% higher which reduces your GCD and the restoring time of your abilities. In this looks, you also receive 20% of self-healing. CD 4 min. When used with the talent Demonic, Metamorphosis as the same properties. If the effect is actuated during the main stage of Metamorphosis, it is prolonged.
Shattered Souls. If you apply the fatal hit on an enemy, a small violet thing falls off it 10 yards away from the death spot of the target. By picking that thing up, you can restore 20% of your max HP stock. If you kill a Demon and pick their soul then all the damage you do increases by 20% for the next 15 secs.
Blur increases your dodging rating by 50% and decreases all the incoming damage by 35%. Blur is modified by Desperate Instincts which boost the damage decreasing ability by 50%. Also, if your health level is below 35%, Blur licks in automatically if you don’t find it while you restore. Roughly speaking, the ability turns itself on.
Darkness is not the most stable one but it still is a raid save. You pour an 8m-range pool around you. All the allies within that pool have a 20% chance of avoiding damage by any type of enemy’s attack.
Consume magic – Consumes 1 beneficial magic effect from the target removing it and granting you 20 fury
Glide and Double Jump allows you to slow down your falling as well as constantly select the flying direction. The ability is activated as simply as by pressing the ‘jump’ key while the character is in the air. Double Jump is one of this class’s main peculiarities. It is activated by a second press of the ‘Space’ key. The second press can be slightly postponed, but not for too long – or Glide just kicks in.
Fel Rush is a kind of a modification of Monk’s Roll, especially in the form of Chi Torpedo. The actuation of this ability leaps you 15 yards in the direction your character is looking in, or the direction you’re running in (A, W, D – left, forward, right, respectively, no back charge). It also does some nice damage, especially notable in AoE. Modified by the talent Fel Mastery. This ability also triggers the Momentum talent.
Vengeful Retreat is another active ability affecting your mobility. You jump 15 yards back, and the enemies that were around you where the leap initiated, would receive some minor damage and get 70% reduction in their running speed for 3 secs. CD 25 secs. Modified by the talent Prepared which reduces the CD by 10 secs, and restores 11 Fury over the next 10 secs if at least one enemy was hit during the Retreat.
Chaos Nova provides an AoE stun for 2 secs. Demands 30 Fury. It also inflicts some small damage by Chaos magic. CD 1 min. Modified by the talent Unleashed Power which removed the Fury spending from the equation, and reduced the CD to 40 secs.
Imprison is your control, of the kind. It paralyzes for 1 min. CD 45 secs, any damage done to the target alleviates the effect. Under this control, no more than one target can be held.
Spectral Sight is a wallhack. It enables you to see your enemies (even those in Stealth) and treasures through physical barriers for 10 secs. Your running speed slows down for the time of Spectral Sight.
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General information. On achieving several new levels you’ll get access to new talent ‘Tiers’. Talents may have different effect on abilities: add new features, replace old ones, modify passively different effects and spells. Talents can be changed in Sanctuaries or any recreational zones. However, if you don’t have any of those places nearby you can use the Codex of the Tranquil Mind which allows you to switch channels within a minute. You can’t change talents in combat. You can’t change a talent if the talent you’ve picked in the last Tier is on Cooldown. You’ll have to wait until it’s restored first.
Tier 1. Lvl 99
- Blind Fury prolongs Eye Beam by 50% and allows it to store 40 Fury each second. Default choice in the Demonic Build.
- Demonic Appetite. Chaos Strike has a chance to spawn a Lesser Soul Fragment, and consuming any Soul Fragment grants 30 Fury.
- Felblade is an additional Fury generator, does damage by Fire. Your attacks acquire the chance to instantly finish the restoring time of this ability. Generates 40 Fury.
*Felblade Prioritize keeping it on a single target while Blind Fury should be used for AOE. Demonic Appetite becomes cool for single target with Eyes of Rage trait.
Tier 2. Lvl 100.
- Unending hunger. With the help of Demon’s bite generates 10 fury additionally
- Demon blades. Replaces Demon’s bite and allows your auto attacks to generate Fury. Could be used with a few build variations
- Immolation Aura. Deals damage to all enemies within 8 yards and generates 80 fury. It is the optimal talent for the most of situations as it’s good for Aoe and single target fight also
Tier 3. Lvl 102.
- Trail of ruin. The final slash of Blade dance inflicts an additional Chaos damage. It is the optimal talent which you could use in the most of the situations
- Fel mastery. Increases Fel rush damage by 100%
- Fel barrage. Channeled spell which inflicts great AOE damage in 3 seconds and has 1 min cd. A good variant for situations when you need to focus on burst AOE damage
Tier 4. Lvl 104.
- Desperate Instincts enables the Blur to kick in automatically if your health level is below 35%. It also increases the damage resistance from 35% to 50%.
- Netherwalk makes you immune to damage for 5 secs. During the effect, your running speed is increased by 100%, and you can’t attack. ATTENTION! This talent does not prevent enemies from debuffing you. CD 2 min. Never hurts to have an immunity at hand. This is one of the most used talents.
* Up to your choice. Just take whatever suits your encounter best.
Tier 5. Lvl 106
- Cycle of hatred. Using Fel rush increases your damage by 15% for 6 seconds. Reduces cooldown of Vengeful retreat by 5 sec if it hits at least one enemy you gain 80 Fury in 10 sec.
- First blood. Reduces the Fury cost of Blade dance by 20 and increases its damage against the first target struck. Currently it is the only good talent in the tier. You should use it with Blade dance every cooldown for AOE and single target also.
- Dark slash. Puts a debuff on enemy for 8 seconds which increases the damage from Chaos strike by 40%
Tier 6. Lvl 108.
Tier 7. Lvl 110.
- Demonic. Eye beam causes you to enter demon form for 8 sec after it finishes dealing damage. Probably the best choice in this tier for the most of the situations – it is good for cleave and AOE, it grants similar growth with Momentum and easy to use in a single target fight because it does not require changing a stand and the damage rotation doesn’t change. Besides this talent synergies with azarite trait Revolving blades allowing to use 2 Death sweeps
- Momentum. Fel rush increases your damage done by 15% for 6 sec. Vengeful retreat’s cooldown is reduced by 5 sec. If it damages at least one enemy you gain 80 fury in 10 sec. Seems like a good talent but it is the most difficult one to use. It grants good short damage burst when you need it.
- Nemesis. Increases damage you inflict against the target by 20% for 1 min. When the target is slain, you will inflict 20% additional damage against all creature types matching the original target (Humanoid, Dragonkin, etc.) for the remaining duration. A situational choice which grants good single target damage if you can attack the target the whole time of its duration.
As a result, we get two strong builds for different objectives:
Standard demonic build:
- Blind Fury / Demonic Appetite with Eyes of Rage trait
- Immolation Aura
- Trail of ruin
- First blood
Felblade build for Single Target:
- Demon blades
- Trail of ruin
- First blood
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BfA introduced a new trait system. Now helmet, shoulders and chest are special items with traits improved by azerite.
Havoc has several top traits you need to obtain:
Furious gaze. The best trait significantly increasing haste at the end of Eye beam duration. The more you have such traits the better.
Eyes of Rage become very cool tool to change your playstyle and also increase your dps. Requires Demonic Appetite talent choice.
Thirsting blades. Another good trait increasing damage due to unstacking increased damage from Chaos strike
Revolving blades. Another good trait improving Blade dance
Seething power. A trait with interesting mechanic which is granting some damage growth. A bit worse than the previous traits.
There is also a worth attention Chaotic transformation trait. Besides of improving damage of Demon’s bite when using Metamorphosis this trait also refreshes cooldown of Eye beam and Blade dance. You need only one of such trait because of cooldown renewal since the damage improvement here is not important.
Also there is a common trait Treacherous covenant which is equally good as the best traits of DH. You can use chart on herodamage.com or go on raidbots.com to see the best stats for your character.
For addon AzeritePowerWeights:
( AzeritePowerWeights:2:"herodamage.com - Stacks_1T_T24":12:577: 159=10, 575=9.70, 220=7.63, 526=7.38, 522=7.29, 352=7.05, 562=7.03, 193=6.88, 82=6.41, 494=6.39, 488=6.39, 196=6.31, 479=6.28, 157=6.08, 126=5.81, 478=5.70, 501=5.65, 485=5.46, 482=5.16, 192=5.11, 523=5.03, 504=5.02, 483=5.00, 194=4.87, 30=4.76, 521=4.65, 486=4.55, 492=4.55, 480=4.49, 195=4.48, 495=4.46, 489=4.46, 245=4.35, 561=4.05, 498=4.05, 505=3.35, 156=3.32, 31=3.14, 500=3.12, 481=3.07, 22=2.73, 459=2.61, 560=2.49, 499=2.42, 353=2.41, 20=2.25, 21=2.19, 576=2.14, 462=1.92, 487=1.81, 493=1.81, 541=1.78, 497=1.76, 491=1.76, 461=1.63, 496=1.56, 490=1.56, 18=1.34: )
Pay attention that these stats are the best for standard Demonic build
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This ratings based on simulation, statistics of WarcraftLogs and players experience.
- Immolation Aura before pull
- Prepot – Battle potion of agility
- Metamorphosis, you can instantly jump on an enemy
- Nemesis (if this talent is taken in your spec)
- Felblade to quickly gain Fury
- Fel rush if Momentum is taken
- Death sweep (if you have First blood by default)
- Keep up the rotation following prioritations
If you use Momentum you should also:
- Use vengeful retreat to gain more Fury
- Use Fel rush the way so the ability doesn’t stand idle at 2 charges or use it to gain buff for more damage
When using Demon blades you could use Fel rush or throw glaive during global cooldown.
When fighting several targets the rotation doesn’t change. Just try to make Blade dance and Eye beam to hit the most of the enemies and don’t hold these abilities for too long after cooldown.
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The default characteristic priority is as follows:
Agility > Versatility ~ Crit > Haste > Mastery
Mastery of this specialization increases the whole damage done by the Chaos magic and increases your running speed.
Check the stats of your character on raidbots.com in Stat Wieghts tab. You can also use an addon Pawn to import this information in the game so it would be easier to chose the next gear.
Based on the aforementioned characteristics and results of your character’s own simulation results, you can draw conclusions on Gems, Chants and Raid Chemicals.
-Weapon: Force Multiplier + Deadly navigation or Versatile Navigation
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Kick with a modifier, with the Shift key held, the ability is applied on a remembered target, without – on the current one.
/cast [mod:shift,@focus]Consume magic
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- Leveling. If your character has been inactive since the previous expansions, the best option to level up it is by Timewalking dungeons. You will gain a lot of experience, but there is one big disadvantage of leveling this way. Timewalks are available only for one week during a month, but Overgear is always here.
- Equipment. At high level, the most important thing for you will become your gear. WoW is a multiplayer game, that’s why we recommend for you to play it with your friends, or to find a new friends for mythic+ runs. If you have any trouble with it – Overgear may help you to find not just friends for a run, but a complete well geared and experienced group that also will be glad to trade all the loot you need.
- Raids. Raids are the top-tier PvE content in the game. That’s why the equipment’s base ilvl is higher than anywhere else. These dungeons require knowing all the tactics and have a good gear to kill the bosses. The possibilities of Overgear might let you skip those criteria.
- Azerite. It is also not the best idea to forget about the Heart of Azeroth and not to feed it with more Azerite. Ignoring this won’t make your character stronger. The easiest way to do it – just complete all the world quests with Azerite rewards everyday. You can get extra azerite from Island Expeditions. Companions can be found at Overgear.