Two interesting new hunter abilities were data mined yesterday from the upcoming Cataclysm Alpha release. News of the leak reached Blizzard devs pretty quickly, who in turn issued an official statement:
Bear Trap is an ability we’ve been toying with since patch 3.1. The problem with introducing a new talent or ability such as this in Wrath of the Lich King, is that it introduces a host of balancing issues both in terms of relative PvE DPS and PvP burst. For this reason, we deemed it an ability that wouldn’t see the light of day until Cataclysm, due to further development and testing.
Hunter Talents – Beast Mastery
We’re very happy with what we’ve seen from Beaver Shot. For one, it provides a much needed boost to overall DPS, without causing other classes to cry out that it’s too overpowered and burst-heavy for PvP. It also serves to bring some spice to a spec which could certainly use a little umph in terms of shot priority and play style.
Again, this talent is not set in stone. It’s quite possible that it may be removed, or at the very least, reworked before the release of Cataclysm. There’s also the definite chance that certain animal rights organizations may object to the use of small mammals being used as projectiles within the context of a video game.
This is an interesting ability in the sense that it goes against the common interpretation of a “bear trap”. So far, it looks to be sort of a watered down hunter’s version of Army of the Dead. What’s exciting though, is that the cooldown is only one minute. It’s possible this may even be shortened via talents, but let’s not get our hopes up too much. 😉
This looks to be a very powerful ability for both single target and AoE damage.
It appears as if Beast Masters will finally be getting their own unique shot. This is long overdue in my opinion, as I’m sure many would agree with me on this… Beast Mastery is quite a lackluster 51 point talent when compared with Chimera Shot or Explosive Shot.
Although it’s uncertain what sort of impact Cataclysm will have on the hunter class, this sneak peek at a possible new Beast Mastery talent looks quite promising. Even without knowing what sort of synergies it may have with other talents, I can already see it as a huge buff to both PvE and PvP. I think this is a smart move, because it provides both areas of play with a much needed boost without being too bursty.
My guess is that the beaver will function similarly to that of the Snobolds in the Northrend Beasts encounter, but will most likely attach themselves to an enemy’s legs, biting at their shins and kneecaps.
Again, being that this is all data mined info, don’t bank on seeing it in the official release of Cataclysm (scheduled to go live sometime in the fall of 2010). It’s expected that these abilities will undergo some changes and further tweaking before the expansion is ready.