The Latest LnL Iteration

Since tomorrow is a holiday in the states (where the majority of my readers are) I wanted to get this out today, just in case summer gets in the way of keeping up with WoW hunter blogs!   (however, don't forget to scroll down for info on the Marksmanship Mastery changes).

Other than the amazing Sniper Training change to MM's mastery,  the big new to come out of the latest alpha build, is they have a new iteration of how LnL may work for Survival hunters.   We had already heard via tweets that LnL was going to be tied into Multistrike.  So the new part is how that works: basically, there are no longer "free" explosive shots; to make up for that, the focus cost went down to 15 (from 25).  There is also no more CD clipping; instead, Lock and Load will give you a CD-less Explosive Shot.   You can gain up to 5 stacks of the CD-less ES, which you can then use right in a row, or you can save for a proc, or a heavy damage/burst phase. We'll have to wait until we have some Blackrock Foundry raid testing before we know what the best way to use the LnL procs will be.  

In case you're worried that this is starting to sound too powerful,  that with enough Multistrike we'll be just firing ES all day,  remember that black arrows duration is being reduced (to 18 seconds), and that we won't have our AoC trinkets any more, so we'll only be firing BA once every 30 seconds,  leaving us with 12 seconds where no LnL can proc, since we also no longer can proc LnL from traps.  

In the end, with this iteration we're left with a more RNG intensive ability than we've had before 5.4, but a slightly more controllable ability than we've had in 5.4, since we'll be able to stack a stat to get better RNG, instead of purely relying on RNG.   Chances are, we'll see less huge LnL proc chains,  and a few more dry spells than we're getting now,  but hopefully it won't be too bad.   We certainly were spoiled in 5.4, with both the 4-piece set bonus, and AoC giving black arrow 100% up-time.

LnL in PvP
One area where I could foresee this having a major impact, is PvP.  One consistent complaint about SV PvP, is there's not enough burst damage to finish someone off.   In WoD,  for one, we won't have less stats in PvP,  which will help keep our MS rating high.  And in addition, we'll now be able to save LnL charges.   Imagine getting up to 5 LnL charges,  then popping glyphed Camo:  you get six seconds where you are untargetable, and can pop out 5 Explosive Shots in a row.   Of course, it will come at the cost of some of your sustained damage, which will keep it from being too OP.  

This is getting into the really speculative, since we don't really know if any of these changes will make it into live,  but how I imagine it could work, is in one of two ways.   The simplest comes from a target switch burst: whenever you notice the other team's healer getting low on mana, you save up LnL charges, and your bursty DD partner saves up a CD too, you both switch targets simultaneously, and you unload all five ES in a row for a kill.   The other is focusing a healer while saving up LnL charges while your melee partner bursts on a DD target; as soon as your partner gets their target down to X% health, you switch, and let your melee start off with a charge or deathgrip on the healer, while you unload all of your LnL charges on the target with low health.   Anyhow, I'm sure better PvPers than I can think of more creative uses of this.  The point I'm trying to make, it gives us an option of good sustained damage, and solid burst potential.  

The Rest:
Slightly less exciting news,  both Distracting Shot and Growl no longer claim they increase threat generation by 200%.   This may just be a tooltip error,  but both abilities simply stat that they increase threat, without saying by how much.  

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