Posted by: thakarron | December 4, 2009

Hitting the Mark! Part 3 – Abilities and Rotation

In this section I’ll be discussing the unique abilities of Marksmanship and how to best apply them to a variety of different situations, as well as the standard priorty system.

Key Abilities

Chimera Shot – A huge source of damage for Marksmanship, not to mention it comes with all sorts of great effects. With this shot in our aresenal we’ll never have to reapply our Serpent Sting on our target (not to mention things that buff Serpent Sting in turn buff Chimera Shot). There are a lot of different uses, ranging from getting some quick mana back, to disarming critical targets (Oynxia guards with Ignite Weapon or Gormok for example).

Readiness – Resets all the cooldowns on our abilities, this is a extremely versatile trick that can allow for all sorts of crazy burst damage. Fire off all your shots (Chimera, Aimed, Arcane), hit Rapid Fire, then pop Readiness and fire all your shots again. This allows for back-to-back Rapid Fires or Kill Shots. To best use this you should have all your shots on cooldown so they’ll be reset along with your longer cooldowns.

Rapid Fire – Although its great for Survival and Beast Mastery, Rapid Fire is crucial to Marksmanship because our Auto-Shots and Steady Shots are buffed by many of our abilities and stats. The haste bonus influences these shots the most and therefore it gives us the most DPS gain, more Auto-Shots is more win. Due to the shortened cooldown thanks to our talents, Marksmanship hunters can use Rapid Fire more often than any other spec and there are many great opportunities to capitalize on this (Icehowl’s stun phase, when your Empowered on Valkyrs, NOT during Bloodlust, etc)

Priority List

I’ll assume you guys know the drill about how a Priority List works, hopefully you’ve read my Survival guide as well =]

1. Kill Shot
2. Rapid Fire
3. Serpent Sting (this is ESSENTIAL, if you use Chimera Shot on a target without Serpent Sting its a huge DPS loss)
4. Chimera Shot
5. Aimed Shot
6. Arcane Shot (at high levels of ArPen it can be beneficial to remove Arcane Shot in favor of more Steady Shots)
7. Steady Shot

Here’s a sample of what to do if you want to use Readiness: Serpent Sting – Chimera Shot – Aimed Shot – Arcane Shot – Rapid Fire – Readiness – Chimera Shot – Aimed Shot – Arcane Shot – Steady Shots until Rapid Fire ends – Rapid Fire

That’s about it for the basic Marksmanship rotation, be aware it can change based on the fight mechanics due to the fluid nature of a Marksmanship hunter’s abilities. In the next post I’ll go over the itemization and glyphs, stick around!



  1. I read over on the WHU (or was it OutDPS.. man my memory fails me sometimes :< ) that Chimera should be prioritised over Kill Shot.. I forgot the exact reason, counts to more of an MM hunter's DPS, I think it was. I still automatically pop Kill Shot first though :p I'm useless.

    Nice guides though! 😀

    • Oh? Hm from what I’ve tested recently the damage difference is pretty slim. So it’s probably not that big of a difference for non-celebrity raiders like me hehe =P thanks though..I’m seeing that Marksman is a lot harder on my mana than it was before the patch :< have you seen anything like that?

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