Know Your Shots!

I was thinking that I should write up a post that talks about various Hunter shots and how their mechanics function. We all have the basic idea of how they work, let’s get into the nitty-gritty details of their damage mechanics. Starting from the top . . .

Auto Shot
The most basic of Hunter shots, obviously. To calculate how much damage Auto Shot will do, this formula is used:

AutoShotDamage = DamageModifiers*(AmmoDPS*WeaponSpeed + (RAP/14)*WeaponSpeed + WeaponDamage + ScopeDamage)

…when these formulas are asking for weapon values, it is asking about the raw stats on the weapon itselfSo let’s see if we can calculate our white damage using this formula. Remember though, our Auto Shot damage will not be the same as Paperdoll damage. Pull up my Armory if you want to follow along. The first calculation we want to tackle is the one displayed in parentheses, (RAP / 14). This will at least show us the formula looks right. Taking my current Ranged Attack Power of 2489 and dividing it by 14 we get 177.87. If you have my Armory pulled up, hovering over that tooltip it indicates that it increases my damage with ranged weapons by 177. So far so good.

It’s important to know that when these formulas are asking for weapon values, it is asking about the raw stats on the weapon itself, not your modified values. So my formula looks like this:

AutoShotDamage = 1.03*(53*2.8+ (2489/14)*2.8 + 339 + 0)

They The 1.03 is to increase our total damage by 3% due to Ranged Weapon Specialization, which I have 3 points in. So if my numbers are right, my Auto Shots should do 1014 damage per hit, given max weapon damage. Can we check this with in-game examples? Of course we can! I pulled up our recent Illidan attempts in our WWS and drilled down to view my shot breakdown. Now we have to remember that Illidan is an armored target, so assuming he has 5 Sunders on him in conjunction with my 636 Armor Penetration, it leaves him with roughly 4864 Armor, with equates to a 31.54% damage reduction.

1014/1.3154 = 770.86

Given raid buffs, I think our Auto Shot calculated damage is very close to in-game applications. Now that we covered Auto Shot, we will move a little faster through our other damaging shots.

Steady Shot
Our Steady Shot formula looks like this:

SteadyShotDamage = DamageModifiers*(150 + (WeaponDamage/WeaponSpeed)*2.8 + 0.2*RAP + [Dazed: 175])

Given we are mainly talking about this in a PvE sense, we won’t bother adding on the Dazed bonus damage, but just be aware that it is there. So, plugging in my numbers, my formula looks like this:

SteadyShotDamage = 1.03*(150+(339/2.8)*2.8+0.2*2489)

Given that calculation, my Steady Shot should be hitting for 1016 before calculating Armor Reduction. Referring to the image above which shows my Steady Shots for 822 damage on average with raid buffs, I think the number is also correct.

Steady Shot and Arcane Shot do not factor in that type of weapon damage increaseWhat’s important to notice here and in the Arcane Shot calculations next is that it has no place for scope damage like Auto Shot did. This is because Steady Shot and Arcane Shot do not factor in that type of weapon damage increase, further solidifying why the +28 crit rating scope is a better choice.

Arcane Shot
The formula for Arcane Shot is simpler than the previous two, as it looks like this:

ArcaneShotDamage = DamageModifiers*(ArcaneShotBonus + RAP*0.15)

The ArcaneShotBonus references a certain amount of added damage based off the rank of Steady Shot. In our case using the max rank (Rank 9) is 273. So the formula looks like this:

ArcaneShotDamage = 1.03*(273 + 2489*0.15)

This gives us a result of 665 damage. While this seems low, remember that Arcane shot does indeed deal Arcane damage and therefore it ignores Armor but is subject to being resisted.

Multi Shot
Multi Shot is one of our hardest hitting shots providing us the prettiest numbers when hitting those Mages in Arathi Basin. It’s formula looks like this:

MultiShotDamage = DamageModifiers*(AmmoDPS*WeaponSpeed + (RAP/14)*2.8 + WeaponDamage + ScopeDamage + MultiShotBonus)

The MultiShotBonus with max rank is 205. And as with the other shots, inputting our numbers makes it looks like this:

MultiShotDamage = 1.03*(53*2.8+(2489/14)*2.8+339+0+205)

The result we get from that calculation is 1225. But! We have Barrage as a talent, so what does that do to our Multi Shot numbers? It’s as simple as changing that 1.03 to 1.15, as these damage modifiers are just added together. So if we had Focus Fire, it would just become 1.17. Adding that 12% damage from Barrage puts it up to 1368.

An interesting note here is effectiveness of Multi Shot for aggro. Distracting Shot generates 900 threat. Threat is normalized so that 1 point of damage equals 1 threat, so with my Multi Shot hitting as hard as it does, it will generate more threat than using Distracting Shot. Remember that when you use Misdirection.

In most cases this information is not imperative to functioning effectively. But at the same time it’s nice to know how these things work. You can easily graph how your shot damage will increase given a weapon change or increase in Attack Power.


About Drotara

Drotara (or BehemothDan) considers himself a geek on many levels. A web developer and programmer by trade, he has no shortage of geeky hobbies. When not fulfilling husband and daddy duties, he enjoys WoW, the WoW TCG, Magic: The Gathering, and great board games with friends and family.