Explosive trap is awesome. It has been buffed quite a bit lately and now scales quite nicely with our attack power, so I figured I’d write up a guide about how and when to use it.
Why should we be using explosive trap? To begin with, if you are SV, it forces a lock and load that does not trigger the internal lock and load cooldown. In addition, it does a lot of damage. All AOE spells are now DPS capped at 10 mobs, however this is a second one that we can use, and for a single global cooldown and the time needed to place it and get back to range, it performs quite well.
If you are in the initial phase of a trash (or heroic) pull, placing an explosive trap, misdirecting to the tank, and then either using 3 explosive shots on the tank’s target or volleying will make you very popular. I like to call this “hunter consecrate”. [edit: for a good article on this, check out Brig's hunter 101 post from December]. I have to mention, however, that the initial damage from the trap does not seem to trigger misdirection, however I think that once you trigger it yourself, all the threat gets redirected.
If you are marks, this will not share a cooldown with your single target abilities, but if you are SV, explosive trap shares a cooldown with black arrow.
I find that a good rule of thumb is that if you are able to volley, it’s generally worth the trouble to try and do it from close enough range that you can also get a trap off. Preferably with misdirect. This type of play lends itself to trash and heroics, of course. However, on add heavy fights where we need to be able to do a lot of DPS to a lot of targets, it might be worth sacrificing the movement time to use a trap on an add.
Here’s the breakdown:
- SV: loses the DPS time needed for moving in and out to trap, the 6% DPS for 15 seconds, the random lock and load chance, as well as the shadow damage from black arrow. SV gains a lock and load.
- MM: loses the DPS time needed for moving in and out to trap.
If you will get more damage done with a trap than you would without one, explosive trap can be nice bonus. Note- there are situations where you aren’t prioritizing DPS, but are focusing down a target (when certain adds have a death AOE, for example). Do not ignore your raid leader to inflate your numbers with AOE!