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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Why is Hunter the most-played class?

    I've always wondered about this, and have never really gotten a coherent answer in /glff. I have played a hunter in the past, and I was never really impressed with 1). solo ability, 2). leveling speed, 3). survivability on a hunter. I see it always touted as "the most newbie-friendly class", and I just don't understand why. It's as complex as all the others, and squishier than most as well.

    The convenience of ports and tracking is nice, but nice enough to make hunter the most popular class? As far as I'm concerned, the convenience stops there.

    Is it because no one wants to tank or heal? Is it because a large portion of the playerbase is too lazy do do anything besides stand still and pew pew? Is it because Orlando Bloom is dreamy?

    Please don't misinterpret this as me slamming the class. It's obviously doing something right. But I honestly don't know what that "something" might be. All I know is I've leveled faster with a minstrel without the hassle of laying traps and playing battle tactician on every pull, and quite frankly with less downtime.

    Surely I'm missing something here. What is it about the hunter class that makes it so darn popular? This is an honest question, and I'm very curious for some input. Thanks.

  2. #2
    From what I've seen it's because people don't want to tank or heal. They think they'll still get asked to tank or heal if they play a champ or DPS RK, so they play hunters. That's the only thing I'm aware of that can explain why it's more popular.

  3. #3
    I agree that one reason is people not wanting to tank/heal. Another thing I would say is that the class description and general knowledge about hunters makes them seem attractive to new players. Hunters can track things, port around, do a lot of damage, etc. I know a lot of people, who were new to MMOs and LOTRO, who made a hunter as their first character and it just never stopped being their main.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Philadelphia PA USA
    Part of it is the skill mechanics are simple; Hunters have fewer combat skills, focus is more straightforward than other systems like ballads or attunement, and most of the skills are direct use unlike a Guardian's response skills. I've played one of every class to at least Level 40, and the Hunter is probably the easiest to go back to and pick up at nearly full effectiveness because it's so straight-forward.

    Plus, fire arrows! OMG. I go through gallons of fire oil when I play a hunter just because foosh-foosh is so much more entertaining than pew-pew.

    What are you basing your "most played" class on? I'd be curious to see if there's a correlation at the class complexity level. There should also be some factoring-in of class popularity before and after the last big update the class had; e.g., Minstrels after Update 6. Finally, it's harder to judge for rune-keeprers and wardens since they require an additional purchase.


    One more thing: Even when I dps as a rune-keeper, I always keep an eye on the fellowship. I can still throw down support and healing when fully dagor-attuned. Hunters don't have many support skills, so there's less need (and therefore little habit) to watch the rest of the fellowship. I think this is where hunter "bad behavior" comes from. There's no mechanic to encourage hunters to watch the state of the fellowship. Adding some skills to encourage hunters to pay more attention to their peers would be a great improvement in the coming revamp.
    Last edited by banhorn; May 05 2013 at 04:07 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    I'm speaking only for myself here.

    I have always liked archery. I was on the Archery Team when I was in Jr College (and made it to the National Intercollegiate Championship one year ). So for me, it just felt natural to choose the Hunter for my first character.

    I also have an 85 Champion and am often asked to off-tank with her. I can tank LLG Dailies with a good Healer.

    I have a 66 RK and a 33 Guardian I am also leveling, to try other rolls in Fellowships besides DPS.
    [B][COLOR=#ff0000]Loriandrel 85 Elf Hunter[/COLOR]--[/B][B][COLOR=#0000ff]Loriandra 85 Woman Champion[/COLOR][/B][B]--[/B][B][COLOR=#ffd700]Lorrawyn 68 Elf Rune-keeper[/COLOR][/B][B]--
    [COLOR=#ff8c00]Lorrell 55 Woman Warden [/COLOR][COLOR=#800080]Lorieth 53 Woman Lore-master[/COLOR]--[COLOR=#008000]Lorifindel 33 Elf Guardian---[/COLOR]Dwarrowdelf[/B]

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2011

    Ranged DPS classes are always popular

    I've played SWTOR, WoW, and LOTRO. My personal experience with all of those MMOs is that ranged DPS classes in general are very popular because they have the illusion of being overpowered. Meaning, if I can do lots of damage from far away, nothing will ever hit me. Ranged classes also typically have some sort of CC ability to make keeping enemies at bay easier, a huge bonus for anyone who enjoys PvP (PvMP) content. Also, it is pretty lazy boy in raids when all you have to do is rotate your skills and move if a puddle pops up underneath your feet. The role of ranged DPS is not challenged very much in most MMOs as far as forcing them to be mobile (with the exception of some T2 content).

    I've always played melee classes until I rolled a minstrel, and I admit being able to kite and kill enemies from afar before they even touch me is really nice. I imagine many other players feel the same. Also, the RP community in LOTRO is quite impressive, and there are many reasons a role-player would like an elf hunter to go on adventures with. Obviously there's a lot of popular lore attached to it, just like Gondorian captains and hobbit burglars.

    Hope that answered your question somewhat.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    I think it's because it's just got that reputation of being the 'starter class'. Hunter seems like a 'cool' class to pick and the class description honestly makes it sound kind of overpowered if you've never played the game before. And at one time, hunter was a bit overpowered (Shadows of Angmar, anyways). We could practically off-tank back then. Now, not so much.

    I don't know about it being 'simple' to play though, maybe only solo. Hunter is a more complex class than many, tbh. It requires a lot of self-buffing, cooldown and focus management, and knowing when to use certain skills for maximum effect. Hunter skill rotation is typically not as simple as other classes (see; Champ, two button wonder). You have to make decisions on what to do so you don't completely throw your DPS out of whack, due to the focus mechanic and also the thin-skinned nature of the class. On my champ, I literally press about four buttons at all during a single-target fight (unless I pull aggro and have to bubble/BA), and even guard tanking rotation is laughably simple and easy to do.
    Last edited by Kajil; May 06 2013 at 12:17 AM.
    [center]RIP Character signature generator, June 2013.[/center]
    [center]Theiol, Fervar, Turthonn, and Vanka, [i]retired LOTRO[/i]|Croue, Folter, [i]Rift - Shatterbone shard[/i][/center]

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    I presume many people who rolled an Elven Hunter was probably thinking of Legolas and/or the movies. Comparing Legolas skateboarding in Helm's Deep or one-shotting the bird-beast-dinosaur-thingy the Nazgûl rode, and the LotRO version of Hunters and "You cannot do that while moving." or at least, the LotRO version of Legolas (eg: The Unmarked Trail) no doubt many people would be disappointed.

    As for myself, I kinda prefer the archer over a warrior in the midst of battle.
    Mildford - R9 Hunter • Support - R7 LM
    The Storm Crusaders (RIP) • Gladden

  9. #9
    Because hunter is the best class!

    The ports made them much faster than others to level. That isn't as true now that the game has a lot more travel options. The tracking was also a huge advantage before they started putting enemies on everyones radar. A lot of hunters started when these were still big advantages. On top of the travel skills, they also get an out of combat run speed buff.

    People also like dps. There was a time when hunters were the OP class. That is why hunters were by far the most popular class when I started. Now they aren't OP but still have top single target dps. They also are one of the best at many target dps. They fall behind on dps when there are 2-5ish targets. So good dps is one of the biggest reasons.

    Then there is the range. I love learning new raids with my hunter. I can sit back and see what everyone is doing. The range also gives much more survivability and allows us to be lazy. On landscape mobs, most die before they are able to get to us.

  10. #10
    Strait up simple------It is an easy class to learn and play solo. There nuff said.

    I play the hunter because I have playstyle that likes to stay at range (including healing).

  11. #11
    Well, mainly I blame this guy.

    And this guy, obviously.

    My other Warhorse is a Fleet Tactical Escort Retrofit, Defiant-Class, U.S.S. Say My Name, NCC-93144

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    White Mountains NH

    hunters .. imho

    I have played all of the classes available .. Hunter & Warden are my favorites .. for a couple reasons.

    I digress, though .. for we are speaking specifically of hunters.
    My thoughts & not in the order of importance .. just in order of thought pattern ...

    1) Ecconomics .. what other class can get around so quickly & inexpencively? even F2P can get their ports & move around easily. When you dont have much money .. this is the way to go.

    2) Ease of play .. after work or a really hard day, I dont want to be thinking of positioning & complex skill rotations. I LOVE my Burg. & my Mini but not when I am looking to just relax. Just give me some tripple traps & some oils & ALL of my troubles are gone (literally).

    3) DPS .. (need I say more)

    4) Grinding mats .. see #1 .. if you want or need something a hunter can get you there quick .. so you can easily grind all tiers of what-have-you. My Explorers & Scholars are ALWAYS hunters

    5) Job Security .. Getting through Volume 1 of the Epic Quests, especially the last 8 books .. you want a hunter with you & LOTS of travel rats

    6) War Steeds .. these were just MADE for Hunters (well, maybe not, BUT) .. if you EVER played a hunter on a war steed you wouldnt go back .. LOLOL

    7) Did I mention fun?

    Granted this is a short list, but, a basic one.

    Hope it helps

    BTW: the only thing an elf hunter has over any other hunter is the 2% bow & sword racials .. I have the most fun with my Hobbit Hunters

    my little pocket-rockets
    When in Danger, When in Doubt, Run in Circles, Scream & Shout

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Mazauks den
    Quote Originally Posted by Eckenbrand View Post
    Well, mainly I blame this guy.

    And this guy, obviously.

    When I was lvl'ing my hunter and took a look over my upcoming legendary skills I thought "explosive arrow" was something like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r6Ut7al7UE8
    Main character: Manegarm

    Hear me bark!

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by chrisli View Post
    I agree that one reason is people not wanting to tank/heal. Another thing I would say is that the class description and general knowledge about hunters makes them seem attractive to new players. Hunters can track things, port around, do a lot of damage, etc. I know a lot of people, who were new to MMOs and LOTRO, who made a hunter as their first character and it just never stopped being their main.
    That would be me, then. I enjoy cappy and champ, play a bit of minstrel and burg, and use warden as a crafting alt (he has so many Rs it's unreal) but hunter is and always has been my main.

    Hunters do have a bad rep, as it is deceptively easy not to use all your skills; I still get strange looks from PUG 3-mans when I do things like remove poisons in school, or fear wolfhounds in Stoneheight off the healer with Cry of the Predator...

    There are skills I don't use a lot but that's because they're &&&&: Scourging Blow, Merciful Shot, Hunter's Art, Camouflage (though it's fun to use for fishslapping kinnies and then hiding...)
    105s: Aedfrith (HN), Aldnoth (CP), Brai (RK), Hrolfdan (MN), Aeldfryd (WD), Morriarty (CH), Aednoth (LM), Mishhar (BR), Hraldan (GR), Rummbold (BG). Tinies - Rumbelina (MN), Aenghus (CP)
    Rangers of Eriador (officer), ex-Snowbourn now Laurelin - A Noob for All Seasons

  15. #15
    My habit of playing archers on MMOs started as a joke: when a bunch of guildmates of mine migrated from one MMO to another and expected me to show up with my usual heavy armored dwarf, I showed up with a female elf archer to everyone's mirth. And it sort of stuck since then.

    I realized that those types of classes fit my impatient personality better: kill fast, move fast, farm mats fast. And I would trade my wayfarer skills for nothing in the world. Especially before I got VIP, those interminable horse travels would have driven me insane.

    But the fact that tanks and healers have more pressure and responsibility (and get blamed more easily?) in groups might also factor into it.

    Quote Originally Posted by banhorn View Post
    Plus, fire arrows! OMG. I go through gallons of fire oil when I play a hunter just because foosh-foosh is so much more entertaining than pew-pew.
    Oh sweet jesus yes. Whenever it runs out, my icons feel... naked, or wrong somehow.
    [CENTER][URL="http://forums.lotro.com/showthread.php?508409-Scenic-Arda"]Scenic Arda[/URL] - [URL="https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?532343-Scenic-Helm-s-Deep&p=7014227"]Scenic Helm's Deep[/URL] - [URL="https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthread.php?519168-New-forum-skin-light-theme"]Forum Light Theme[/URL][/CENTER]

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Hmm. Hunter was the first class I tried, back in oh-I don't-want-to-think-how-long-ago. Why? Because the concept and portrayal sounded awesome.
    Concept: I kill you before you can reach me. Woot. Why this concept? Oh boy, big question. Well, let's go back to what the bow is. The bow is the weapon of quick, efficient execution over the slow, stupid, melee soldiers (see Agincourt). It represented a stage of technological advancement. So, culturally, bows became symbols of the cool, the clever, and the nimble.
    There's a lot of evidence to back up this idea. Legolas, anyone? Robin Hood? I think someone mentioned Hawkeye earlier.
    These aren't bulky, strong, muscular classes. Manly, to be sure, but not in the sense of brute strength. Rather, applied and directed force than just RaWRR manliness.
    So when we read a description like: "Nuker - The Hunter is proficient at dealing out damage to single foes at both range and melee. When the Hunter is at range, he can unleash devastating arrow shots that do high damage to single targets. When the solo enemy finally manages to close into melee range, the Hunter is well-equipped to deal the finishing blow with some of their melee skills" (lotro wiki), we get a sense of "oh boy! Deadliness here we come!."
    Sadly/happily, to bring in the ("real") effectiveness of a bowman would be, in a word, overpowered. Still, a quick and fun class, with a good number of convenience skills.
    Last edited by Beast_of_War; May 07 2013 at 04:37 PM.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    I started on lotro just a little over two years ago and the first character I created was in fact a hunter. I managed to look over the other classes but really I had already made up my mind, because in almost EVERY game that has a character/class with ranged ability I'm all over that. Bows are also one of favorite weapons in real life and I also partake in archery, it just seemed like a natural choice for me on some level.

    I don't think it helps that I started playing almost DIRECTLY after a LOTR movie marathon one day. Legolas on the brain you guys. O_o;

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    I was also a hunter first, when i started this game, because I always used bows & xbows, back to super nintendo days (controlling Bow in Breath of Fire 2 instead of main character, Using Boomerangs and bows in Zelda: A Link to the past, using the ranged weps in Secret of Mana, etc...) which continued with N64 Zelda and eventually on PC in Morrowind, Dragon Age, etc... You see the hunter was first choice 'cause I like the range killers.

    And i usually prefer xbows over bows for one simple reason:
    Futurama [Bender]: "Ah, the crossbow. A pitiless, elegant killing machine. The Bender of the 15th century."

    As for my hunter in its current state, he's badly geared because my LM and my guard are way more in demand in any group I ask what to bring, the LM usually even more than the Guard.

    Still the hunter is usually the first I take through new content, thus remains my main character.
    Gladden: Sulherok (HNT100) Woodworker; Soradoc (GRD100) Jeweler; Saelind (LM100) Tailor; Tinuvaraen (MIN100) Scholar; Silmathryth (CAP98) Metalsmith; Harlequina (BRG37) Weaponsmith; Ghâmim (RK36) Cook; Elindurion (20WRD) Woodworker; Balarella (13HNT)

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    for me it was simple. Im english and after we nicked the longbow off the taffs we used it better than anyone versus a bunch of armour plated gymkana entrants over the water to the south.

    my main in eq is a ranger, i was levelling ranger until ffxi nerfed the class. i like fletching and being a bowyer. i taught long range rifle shooting and hunter is as close you can get in lotro. i solo exclusively in pve. i thought it used to be a popular class but is now shunned. go figure
    Burn the books!

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    always played the glass cannon, love the big numbers when i am hitting a mob/boss, next to that the hunter has some of the best travelling skills, so adding those things together i guess that is the reason why so many play the hunter (yes we have lower survivability, but with care you should hardly ever get into trouble)
    Flixxer - Hunter - Imladris - 100 R7 ---- Danielleth - Minstrel - Imladris - 22
    Zaireth - Rune-keeper - Imladris - 73 -- Ariannasophia - Warden - Imladris - 14
    Flixxer - Champion - Eldar - 54

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    New York
    In other games I've played, I chose the archer type. And I was always interested in archery and shooting from afar so I decided to go with the hunter. I capped my hunter and then proceeded to change my main after I had capped my minstrel and he was used more than my hunter was (the logic: it's easy to find a hunter, but good healers are hard to come by). So then I decided to cap a captain, and a lore master and another captain and then finally, my favourite one: my warden. The novelty of shooting arrows wore off after I realized that hunters must give up a lot of DPS in order to maintain survivability and they're not as simple as many people say they are. I just wasn't having fun anymore, hunters got old fast. My warden was much more interesting. But for the first few months of capping, and even now, I have a fully geared hunter, and occasionally I like to say 'I don't want to tank or heal, I want to play my hunter' and pew pew ^_^ I capped many toons so I can play all of them and it's nice to be able to not be at fault if someone dies because I either didn't get aggro on something (resists, out of range, what have you) or I didn't heal someone (ok sometimes that's on purpose to teach a lesson >:-D), healing and tanking can be stressful lol

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    AFK in Dol Amroth
    BeforeI played lotro,I was a scout in runes of magic before they nerfed dex. So when my friend introduced me to this game,I still had that 'range is op' mindset. I've always liked ranged classes in any game I play, i find them alot more fun than melee classes.
    Fellowship Hadacar: I now have a mental image of a little pea with a NE Patriot's logo painted on it.
    Professional AFKer.

  23. #23
    It's the closest LOTRO has to the "fantasy ranger" archetype...

    And "fantasy ranger" is a very very very popular archetype among players.
    Hence the popularity of the Hunter.
    105 Hunter, Lore Master, Beorning

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by SerowLOTRO View Post
    It's the closest LOTRO has to the "fantasy ranger" archetype...

    And "fantasy ranger" is a very very very popular archetype among players.
    Hence the popularity of the Hunter.

    Especially because I think Tolkien invented the archetype with Aragorn. He was one of the coolest characters in the books, and really inspired people. I now I wanted to be a Ranger when I first started LOTRO, and hunter was as close as I could get.

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Castle Wars
    Because of my playstyle, i loovvee ranged kiting.

    Lendas would get a kick out of this, but it turned out BAs were the class i was looking for xD
    Mirkwoodian - Savior of the Ettenmoors

    Squishy sacrificial tank 2012ish


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