Hunters that only started during Wrath of the Lich King are going to get a rude awakening when stepping into dungeons and heroics. Gone are the days of AoE tanking and Aoeing all the mobs down, no, these days you will require Crowd Control to succeed. So hunters better dust off their trap launchers and get ready for some serious trapping. Here are a few tips and tricks to improve your trapping and crowd controlling game.
1. The first thing I do when I step into a pug and even a guild run is to let the other guys know that I as the hunter should be responsible to pull. This is because traps are location-based not mob-based. All other classes simply need to select their target and cast the spell to control their mobs, hunters need to place the traps. Although it is of course possible to trap mobs once the fight is underway (more on that later) but it is so much easier if the hunter traps initiate the pull. Also hunters have feign death and misdirect to diffuse any initial aggro off the trap pull whereas only rogues have a similar skill.
2. Make sure you move to a spot where you are going to be able to continue to control your target and keep an eye on your controlled target. A lot of these fights will involve moving and you will want to ensure that you always have a clear view and are in range of your trapped target. There's nothing worse than a trap breaking out and you are unable to retrap quickly because the big main boss (for example0 that you are fighting is blocking your view.
3. If your trap was broken by AoE or a pull was initiated by someone else and you were unable to trap successfully, do not despair. You have a taunt in Distracting Shot, use it. Place a trap in front of you, move back a couple of steps fire distracting Shot and when you see the target coming towards you turn off Auto Shot and wait for the target to be trapped. Also communicate at the start of the run that you will be doing this in these situations and let the tank know to not worry about any mobs running towards you. You do have Feign Death after all if it is unwanted aggro. Marking up mobs will help the tank identify that the mob going for you is your trap target.
4. Don't forget that you have other crowd control skills available to you. If you are a survival hunter you can effectively control two mobs at the same time. One using your trap, and the second with a combination of Wyvern sting and either Scare beast (when applicable) and Scatter Shot. For trash Wyvern Sting usually will control it long enough on its own until it becomes the new kill target.
I hope these tips help you refine your trapping and crowd controlling skills. Believe me when I say you will need them. Dungeons and heroics are challenging and I love the fact that we are forced to learn basic raid techniques such as good raid awareness, communication and having to adapt this early into the new expansion. If you have any tips or general comments please feel free to post them below, I love reading what you guys think.
Keep on hunting,