PSA: Focus Fire is Currently Broken

***All of the following has at this point been fixed.  Kindly disregard. :-P

A Stampede Bug?

A friend mentioned to me that she'd heard Stampede wasn't doing as much damage as people were expecting, and since I'm not raiding tonight, I decided to look into it.

The first thing I tested was the damage done by Stampede, both as BM and as MM.  With no gear on at all, I have the following stats:

Pet AP1054
Other StatsN/A
Pet AP1054
Other StatsN/A

As Marksman, my Stampede pets did 588 damage each regular hit against a raid level target dummy, with a few 587s thrown in there. Using the formula you'll see in the Hunter Stat Conversions and Abilities page, we know that the formula figuring out a stampede pet's damage is:
That is, AP damage function, times the reduction for Armor, times combat experience, which brings us to 587.63787,  which is what we expected.

As BM, my stampede pets did 786 damage under the same circumstances, with an occasional 785. As BM, the formula for a stampede pet is:


As BM the difference is including Mastery, as well as increasing Combat Experience to a 70% buff from a 50% buff. That gives us 785.8677,  which is again, what we expected.

So I was about to say that people were mistaken, and there was no problem with Stampede (haste was still affecting Stampede correctly, as well as other stats, and the duration was still correct).  However, my last test, on a whim, was to look at how Focus Fire affected Stampede.

Focus Fire is Currently Broken

The picture at the top here shows a graph of my, and my pets' Attack Power changing as I use Focus Fire. As you'll notice, my pet's AP is not changing when FF is cast, it stays the same the entire time. When I switch to the Damage Done Events tab, I can go through all of the hits by my stampede pets, and nothing changes when FF is cast. 

After that, I went and set up a similar test for normal BM pets, and Dire Beasts.  It turns out no pets are inheriting the AP buff from Focus Fire.  As our pets tend to do at least 60% of our damage as BM, that means that we're currently getting less than half the benefit from Focus Fire.
I am 99% certain that this is a bug, and not intentional.  And I think we'll see it fixed by the end of the week, maybe even tomorrow morning.  

For the time being, be very cautious if you've been wanting to play BM.  It is not working as you might expect it to.


Effinhunter, who maintains the guides over on the hunter forums at Elitist Jerks, noted that in the character pane, our hunters' AP was not changing when we used Focus Fire.  This makes it a very bizarre bug, as from the picture at the top of this entry, you can see that advanced combat logging is showing our AP increasing.  So I ran some test on hunter abilities (which you can find here, if you're interested; in the query pin, change Absent to Present on the Focus Fire buff to see both sides of the data, or remove the pin to see it all) which gave me the following results:

W/o Focus Fire
Arcane avg 1759
Cobra Shot avg1054
Auto Shot avg753
W/ Focus Fire
Arcane avg1759
Cobra Shot avg1055
Auto Shot avg752

(If you're wanting to do the math, that's wearing no gear except a white bow with a 1-3 damage range, other than that all stats are the same as the test above.)

As you can see, there's no change in the damage done from Focus Fire's AP buff. For all practical purposes, this means that FF is currently working as the Empowered Focus Fire perk was never added.


  1. Thank you so much for testing this out. I was having some fun in normal Hellfire Citadel yesterday and was concerned that I was doing something wrong since my damage was so much lower than normal. Thanks for verifying that a bug exists and why.

    1. yeah, I think that was a lot of people's experience. Now we just get to wait and hope that it was unintentional... :-/

  2. That explains a lot. Someone in guild that had been BM was doing a lot less than he was before the patch and was wondering what changed. I explained to him nothing did, he should still be the same, but he was lower on every fight. I told him he could chalk it up to the fights being new. You always do a little less when first learning a fight.

    I could see me being lower than I was used to by switching to BM as I have not played BM so there is a little learning curve for a few days getting used to it, but he should have done better. Now we see why he didn't.

    As for my first experience with BM in a while, lets just say I will be MM. Two fights I reached 5 stacks for the first time as the boss died. Yeap. Not once during the entire fight did I manage to get five stacks. Sorry, I can not play a luck based spec. So no BM for me. Guess that means a broken focus fire doesn't matter to me either if I can never get to use it anyway.

    1. Ha, I like the grumpy version of looking on the bright side of things "doesn't matter if it's broken, I never get enough frenzy stacks anyway". :-P

      Unless a raid team just doesn't have any Locks, Warriors or Balance Druids, there's no reason to ever bring anything but MM now. :-( And I mean, I like MM, I was planning on playing it this tier. but having two garbage specs... well, i hope this is a bug and they fix it...

      Bendak's prediction last night was:
      6/25/15 6.2 Hotfixes:
      "Improved Focus Fire: Now only applies to the hunter."

      It'll be a sad day for hunters...

  3. As always, thanks for doing the math heavy lifting for us on this. Having been forced out of playing SV, I switched to BM pretty much because I thought I understood the Focus Fire mechanic and have gotten adequately skilled at it. It is very disheartening to know that executing the mechanic does nothing, though. *wry smile* But your post certainly explains why I've been getting such mediocre numbers.

    I leveled as MM but have not played it since the end of Wrath, so I am not excited about relearning it. What a shame that Blizz is forcing me into it -- here's hoping they will fix this bug quickly.

    1. Since I created my current "main", SV has been his main spec. Even a couple times when I was PvPing as MM and raiding as BM, I'd go reset my spec several times a week, because I liked that he was dedicated and staying true to the spec. but the tuesday, I dropped SV for the first time ever. If I had known BM was gonna be such garbage, I wouldn't have bothered... I feel like I'm cheating on SV... :-(

  4. Aww, this kind of sucks. Gonna stay BM, though. Haven't spec'd away since Wrath! (Yes, even when it was terrible back then!)

  5. Looks like a fix is in testing.

    Patch 6.2 Hotfixes - June 25

    Hunter: Beast Mastery
    [Hotfix in testing] Improved Focus Fire should now correctly increase attack power.


  6. Nice find! I noticed my damage had gone down considerably since 6.2. Now I know why!

  7. It would appear that this was fixed in the 26th update, no?


    1. Oh yes, it's been fixed all weekend. I'll put a note at the top here. :-P