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Raybarker's Hunter Guide

Posted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 7:23 pm
by Leirosa
Original Author: Raybarker
Retrieved from Aeria by Angitia.
Raybarker wrote:I thought you may find this useful. I wrote it and have been updating it for several months - Zathura's my IGN over on the european server. Keeping an eye on it here in case anyone finds errors, or evidence of brainworms.
EDIT:updated to 1.4 - whole bunch of minor changes.
IMPORTANT: as of January 1st 2010 my hunter is being deleted, along with the rest of the european server. there's no way I'm relevelling all those jobs, so looks like I'm done :/
Until there's Mount-Babel grade tweaks or overpowered items added, this guide should be pretty much up-to-date. If you're new, be sure to look through the replies to make sure this guide has not turned to garbage. Anways, have fun playing DoMO!
Zathura's POST NERF Hunter guide v1.4-2009.09.13

When I started this there were 2 other hunter "guides" out there on the net, but they were both from 2007, and so old as to be either near-useless or actually misleading. Since then the Hunter was "nerfed." The skills have changed slightly and several jobs (most notably Witch-Doctor) have also been released. These can have a substantial effect on the Hunter class, depending on your preferred play style.

This guide is aimed squarely at the hunter endgame. It presumes you know how to play DOMO, and therefore know where to level and can make up your own mind about what you want to do and how you want to play. All skill comparisons etc presume they are at the max possible level. It presumes anyone trying to level hunter has at least lvl 40 sub-skills from other jobs. There is a reason for this - hunter is EXPENSIVE. That NPC's not kidding when they say it's not very suitable for beginners. It is not suitable for those who don't want to spend a few hundred thousand gold's worth of arrows, unless you can equip a melee weapon from another class and avoid the cost issue.

You'll need MULTIPLE arrow boxes. so attend weddings of strangers, take pupils or get a magical big pack. For the arrows themselves, join a guild and ask everyone to save their arrows, beg in Eversun City. Steal them. Just whatever you do, try not to buy them full price from NPCs. To a non-hunter, arrows are a valueless drop, and most players will either give them or sell them to you at half the NPC price or less. Alternately, use an equip weapon skill.

So basically, if hunter is your first job? Good luck, but I recommend you stop here and go pick something easier.

Here's what this guide covers

1.1 starting stats
1.2 what you get
1.3 stat builds (and what they do)
2.1 general skill advice
2.2 Archery
2.3 Hunter's Instincts
2.4 Hunting skills (passive)
3.1 general sub-skill advice
3.2 active
3.3 passive
appendix 1: skill descriptions, and personal opinions of each.
appendix 2: a note on PVP

1.1 starting stats
1.2 what you get
1.3 common builds (and what they do)


These are the Hunter starting stats:

Strength 16 (that's Power, for you Aeria Games players)
Physique 7
Wisdom 6
Agility 7
Dexterity 15
Durability 7


To make a reasonable build, you'll need to know what those points get you:

1 Strength = 2 Attack
1 Wisdom = 1.67 MP + .47 MagAtt + .33 MagDef
1 Agility = 1 Attack + 1.33 Evasion + .27 MagEvasion
1 Dexterity = 1.5 Attack + 1.6 Acc. + .2 MagAtt + .27 MagAcc + .13 Critical
1 Physique = .33 Defense + .13 MagDef + 6.27 HP
1 Durability = 1 Defence

These figures are are not exact, but they provide a general indication of the bonuses. (it's actually more complex, with player-level bonuses, etc.)

My opinion:

Stuff will die when you hit it but it provides nothing *but* attack. There are better choices for skill or buff fighting, so would recommend those that provide a wider range of benefits.

Hunter skills are attack based, so this IS a poor choice. the only benefit is a tiny bit of MP
(1.67MP per point) and better default MP regen.

your base attack will be weaker than strength(power) or even dexterity, but the casting/cooldown reduction (capped at 103 agi) actually over-compensates for this. 1.33 evasion and 0.27 magic evasion will be very useful for the dedicated soloist or PVPer. Strongly recommended.

In terms of base attack, dex is weaker than strength, but that 0.13 critical (capped at 33) adds up, and you will rarely miss. In early levels a Dex-based hunter will do less damage than a strength based one, but in later levels will do *more* damage per hit for their regular attack, and hit more often. Your actual critical rate will vary according to Fighting Chance(luck system) and the monsters you are fighting, so unfortunately it can vary wildly. Critical Attack is capped at 33. In my opinion, at least SOME dex is a must in nearly any hunter build - a very, very good stat for the hunter to have.

tank stats, with no attack. what you gain in defense you lose in killing more slowly. Not recommended.


There are 2 definite "best" stat builds - this has been proven and is unlikely to change. These are full dex, and 103 agi/rest dex.

Full Dex - optimum build for buff-based DPS, which doesn't get as much benefit from agility, but no defense. Dexterity wins over strength due to the high critical rate received with regular attack. Best option in terms of damage per MP point. Will not see the word "miss" much (either over mobs heads, or your own.)

103 Agi, rest Dex - agi-tank and fast caster. 103 agi for the cooldown cap, rest dex because it brings the most general benefits. In DPS terms, the ideal skill-based fighter. Has low base attack, but due to cooldown reduction will do more skill DPS than other builds. Not a great idea for skill those wishing to maximise their regular damage. Strongly recommended for those that wish to fight mainly by skillspamming or have a great love of PVP. Worth noting that this will use 42% more MP per minute than other builds, so will require good MP regen skills to be effective. If you're taking agi, take it early for higher damage ASAP, or late for higher damage per MP when MP skills are low.

It's your Hunter, so you don't have to choose one of these - feel free to make an odd hybrid like 2 dex 1 agi or just go crazy, but be aware that you'll probably end up restatting to one of these two builds in the end. If you can't decide which to choose, I'd probably suggest the 103 agi option.

2.1 general skill advice
2.2 Archery
2.3 Hunter's Instincts
2.4 Hunting skills (passive)


Like most jobs, there are not enough skill points to go around, and you're gonna have to make some hard choices with skills. The earlier you make them, the better. Basically, you need to consider your preferred play style, and choose accordingly.

It's best to choose 1 skill tree to focus on, either Archery, for skill spamming, or Hunter's instincts for buff-based attacks. If you take the "equip bow" skill from "Hunting skills" then you will be very short of points, and have to almost completely ignore one hunter skill-tree. Therefore If you enjoy Hunter and wish to use it as a "main" job, I *strongly* recommend you do not take any of the equip skills.

As mentioned before, there's two basic ways to play a hunter - as a skillspammer, or as a buff-based fighter - and they both have their benefits and problems.

Skill-spammer: Basically, focus on the Archery skill tree, and your DPS will be very good (perhaps best in game) for as long as you can keep going. The downside to this is the high MP consumption. until you have excellent MP regen from items or skills it will be hard to avoid downtime. Good damage per arrow ratio too. for DPS this works best on a high-agi build.

Buff-fighting: very decent damage but costly if using a bow. High damage per MP but low damage per arrow. Popular with those who already have a weapon equip skill with good physical attack and are levelling to get Hunters Instincts. Having a good buff fighting sub helps (such as All-out Assault from Swordsman/Blademaster, or Martial Hex from Witchdoctor) for DPS this works best on a high-dex build.

Basically put, If you have good MP recovery available, then focusing on Archery may be the right choice for you. Otherwise, you'll be buff-fighting or sitting a lot.

On the other hand, Hunters instincts does not require a bow to be equipped, and makes an good sub-skill set for any physical attack job such as swordsman, thief, etcetera. If you have good attack buffs (such as Martyr Arts or Blood Curse Poison) this may be a better focus.

Unfortunately there is no single correct answer or this guide would just be a stat build and a list of skills to take. It's easier to buff-fight, particularly in the early levels when MP regen skills are poor, but skills use less arrows and do more damage, particularly without regular attack buffs from other jobs. therefore the most common skill build is this:

Hybrid: a mix of both play styles - fight with skills until out of MP, then buff-fight while MP bar refills. The benefit is minimal downtime, and you get a feel for how hunter plays in both ways. The downside to not this is that you may not be a heavy hitter, but at least if you restat/reskill at high level you'll have some idea what you want.

First off, the AOE attacks that hunter has(Dart Deluge/Dark Deluge) are terrible. simply terrible. DO NOT GET THEM. Level 5 dart deluge cannot reliably kill 1 level 6 hedgehog. Dark Deluge is much better, but has a 50 second cooldown. that's a lot of points to get only 1 decent AOE. The only feasible use for these is pulling for a party, and single target attacks will do that nearly as well.

All other archery skills are single target, and exomega255 on the Aeria forums ( ) has provided an analysis from the IC DOMO servers ranking the most powerful attack skills.

These 3 lists are pretty much all you need to know:

Most damaging over time:
Alchemy» birds»additive»strongbow»bowstring»full draw »demonslayer»assassin

Most MP used:
Alchemy»full draw »strongbow»birds»demon slayer »bowstring»additive»assassin

Most damage per MP:
Alchemy»additive»birds»bowstring»assassin»strongbow »demon slayer »full draw

These are fairly old, but I've tested this and it's still essentially the same. The order of these lists varies slightly according to the level of the skill you have at the time, of course - at level 65 I repeated these experiments and discovered the highest damage per MP skill is Additive Arrow, then 2 Birds with 1 Stone, then Arrow Alchemy, although everything else was essentially the same as before. This is probably partly because alchemy is an unusual skill - see appendix 1 for more on this.

early on, the Hunter's Instincts skills are rather poor. just about the only tier 1 skill that you might regularly use is Ankle Strike, particularly early in the game.

I recommend not taking Concentrated fury early on, without a good reason. It's purpose is to save you arrows, but it cannot be used with skills. In most cases you would be better served by getting All-out Assault from swordsman. please see appendix 1 for more. There is an high level skill-spamming strategy using this skill, which relies on overcoming the m.acc. debuff - Wouldn't recommend it unless you can raise m.acc to the 10-20 range. This is rather difficult, but definitely possible if you have the right things available to you. If you can achieve this, then every skill will be hitting the damage cap, regardless of how much attack your build gives you. this is most effective on a high agility build, but easiest to achieve on a high dex build.

After level 30, the skills get MUCH better. Ready For action is probably the single best buff in the entire game. (up to 10% on attack, defense, magical attack, magical defense, accuracy and evasion. Stacks with other buffs!) Aim is a great attack speed buff, particularly on an agi build. Weak Spotter on a build with dexterity can give you a critical rate of 1 in 3 or better!

Hunting skills (passive)
Hunter has 3 passive skills:

EQUIP BOW: what it says. not recommended if you want to use it as a main job! I'm told some people use equip bow on high-strength swordsmen(blademaster) and I can see that would do a lot of damage. Don't forget that all other jobs get a damage penalty when using bow, so you'll have to spend between 27 to 35 skill points on Bow Mastery to use it most efficiently, depending on which job you intend to use it with. If you just want to use it to pull monsters, buy a beginner bow instead.

BOW MASTERY: allows bows to be used at full strength on other jobs (NEEDS EQUIP BOW!) Increases efficiency by 5% per level. Job penalties are generally between 30% and 50% so plan on spending 12-16 points here if you're actually taking equip bow

SHARPENED ARROW: increases physical skill damage by x% (1/2 for other jobs) 10% at lvl 65 is a significant increase! worth getting at later levels.

3.1 general sub-skill advice
3.2 active
3.3 passive


The most unique feature of DOMO is of course the sub-skill system. I have been told that Hunter is actually the best class in terms of damage if you do not have any sub-skills to use with it, however if you don't have sub-skills to use you are either going to spend a lot of money very quickly or spend a lot of time farming arrows from low-experience monsters.

I can't tell you exactly what to sub, as I don't know what you have available, and there are many ways to combine each set of jobs depending on what skills, summoners and equipment you have and what you want to do. For example Akumi has produced dozens of specialist Thief builds, and I have no intention of being that in-depth here.

I can however suggest a few obvious options that work well together. Experience and your own preferences for play-style should help guide you far more than I could in this regard. Of course, I strongly recommend that any sub-skill set you use regularly should be levelled as high as possible, particularly as some have much better buffs and skills on their second page..

For solo work: unless you can heal with items or summoners you will probably need both MP and HP regen and defensive subs. I would probably recommend Medical Treatment for this, as well as either an offensive set such as Martyr Arts, or Close Combat for even more MP and HP regen and the Premonition skill. Unfortunately as bow is a 2-handed weapon, the Mercenary defensive skills such as better blocker will not be usable.

For buff-based fighting: the combination of Martyr Arts, Blood Curse Poison, with Swordsman(Blademaster) and Fencer passives on a full dex/hunters instincts build will possibly do the most damage of any combination of skills on a hunter, particularly if you have attack speed pills and team buffs from a spear merc, but at the cost of using a LOT of arrows, and having to rely on a team doctor or summoner to keep you alive. the combination of Aim/Lash Out for speed and Concentrated Fury/All-out Assault + Martial Hex to buff your regular attack to a ridiculous level. With lvl 40+ subs this may well be the most efficient killing machine you can make with a buff-based hunter, but not really sustainable unless you can afford a massive amount of arrows or can equip a master dagger or a saber with no weapon class penalty (by default they get a 30% penalty.) Generally, this will do approximately the same damage as a skill-spamming hunter, as at very high levels approx ~30% of hits will be double damage on a full dex build. Unfortunately that will vary wildly depending on what you're fighting and your Fighting Chance.

For skill based fighting: if you have good MP regen items and team-buffs, you can equip attacks buffs. If you need to maximise your MP regen, a combination of either Close Combat and Doctors Inner Magic, a Wizards Cataclysmic Converter, Shamans Spring Cleaning or Merchants MP Medicine boost. It's worth noting that Merchant and Thief skills have no penalty when used with a hunter. Alternatively you can attempt to overcome the Concentrated Fury problem with a combination of buffs and items.

These suggestions are only the tip of the iceberg, and depending on what you have, what you're planning to do, and how you prefer to play, many possible combinations can be used. The buffs mentioned here are not necessarily the best (for example, AKFrost points out Frog Force is better than burning rage) and are provided primarily as examples.

best advice I can give you is: think about what you have, and make it work for you, but don't be silly. Hunter is a physical damage dealer - your sub-skills should either help with physical attacks, or keep you (or your pets) alive. Otherwise you're doing it wrong.


SWORDSMAN(BLADEMASTER): Martyr arts; pretty much every skill in the Martyr arts section can be useful for a hunter. Swordsman and Hunter are very complimentary skill sets, although there is a 10% MP/cooldown penalty.

THIEF: Close Combat; if you have high level thief Close Combat Skills, these may be very useful for MP restoration, and to a lesser extent HP restoration. Also, premonition for it's +1 attack speed.

DOCTOR: Medical Treatment; Regeneration, First Aid and Inner Magic are a great sub, and it's incredibly useful when levelling without a doctor. if you have regen 11, remember it's a % based heal, so fill your hat with HP+20% onyxes if you can!

MUSICIAN: Pet Sounds; Not directly useful for the hunter itself, but If you play with pets then it can provide very substantial buffs for them.

WITCH DOCTOR: Blood Curse Poison; for the buff fighter, Martial Hex is very strong. Blood Boil is too, but casting it 5 times in a row is far too annoying for most players.

This list is by no means exhaustive, and most other jobs do have usable skills that you can sub to hunter, but these ones are the commonly available skill sets, unless you have the equip weapon skill from a job and can use a wider range of buffs.


THIEF: equip dagger: if you do not want to spend a lot of time or money getting arrows, the next best weapon is the dagger as it has the lowest job penalty. Those archery skills won't be much use to you though. likewise with other equips.

SWORDSMAN(BLADEMASTER): Equip Light Armour, Equip Saber; has an attack bonus and more def than clothing, so useful for the skillspammer. Saber has high attack and allows you to use saber skills, so like dagger it 's useful for those who wish to avoid the arrow cost problems.

DANCER; Equip Dancewear; if you're going for maximum attack speed, you can use a combination of dancewear and clothing. Clothing pants and top with dancewear wrists and boots gives a 20% attack speed boost, but at the cost of a reduction in defence. A fully gold-statted clothing set will give the same 20% boost, along with +20%HP/MP and many more bonuses, but is very difficult and expensive to get. Also, when fighting magic monsters at later levels the ability to equip something with m.def will come in handy.

MERCENARY: Equip Heavy Armour; not recommended for the speed freaks, but if you skillspam this will keep you alive longer against physical attack monsters

WIZARD: Equip Robes; I would not recommend this for general use as it has a physical attack penalty, but It will help against strong magic users.

APPENDIX 1: skill descriptions, and personal opinions of each.

Archery Skills

Unless stated otherwise, all are single target attacks and require a bow and arrows.

--Full Draw
Description:Draws a bow back fully for a stronger attack.
-good basic tier 1 skill, medium damage but uses a lot of MP, tier 2 skill is better, so you may want to abandon leveling it once Strongbow becomes available.

--Additive Arrow
Description:Fires arrows in quick succession, increasing damage to the enemy.
-good tier 1 skill. strongly recommended, but uses arrows at a crazy rate, particularly at max level.

--Dart Deluge
Description:Fires a volley of arrows to inflict damage on surrounding enemies. Consumes 5 arrows. Area of effect attack,
-absolutely terrible skill which does nearly no damage. only worth considering as a requirement for Dark Deluge, and certainly not worth maxing.

--Arrow Alchemy
Description:Converts magic power into arrows. Useful when you have no arrows left.
-When used, it feels almost pathetic - does low damage compared to other skills. However it's THE strongest skill in terms of damage per second when leveled, so strongly recommended. This skill is unusual in that it has no damage cap, and is instead a multiplier of the normal attack damage rate, which increases each level. Also raising the level reduces the cooldown.

--Assassin's Arrow
Description:Shoots an arrow at the enemy from a distance when they are not looking. Causes great damage, but does not hit easily.
-does a quite lot of damage, if it hits, but has a very long cooldown so not a recommended skill unless you have spare points.

Description:Draws the bowstring back with great force for a more powerful shot.
note:Needs Full Draw (Level 5)
-basically a better version of Full Draw. if you have to choose between the two, go with this one.

--Two Birds With One Stone
Description:Uses one arrow to hit the enemy up to x times.
note:Needs Additive Arrow (Level 5)
-initially very poor. but at lv 10 it's joint second place for best archery skill. Like all multiple-hit skills, it stops when it gets a miss, so it will be weaker on a low-dex build.

--Dark Deluge
Description:Fires a bloody rain of arrows to inflict damage on surrounding enemies. Consumes 5 arrows.
note:Area of effect, Needs Dart Deluge (Level 5)
-decent AOE attack, but not worth the 10 points wasted in Dart Deluge, in my opinion. There are few instances where you will find these skills useful (such as when the giant king glob explodes in the high level Tricksy Tortoise dungeon) but overall, it's cooldown means it's rarely practical for general use.

Bowstring Shockwave
Description:Uses force on the bowstring to create a shockwave that damages the enemy without using an arrow.
note:Needs Arrow Alchemy (Level 5)
- a very "medium" attack. not a must-have, but not to be avoided at all costs, either.

Demonslayer Arrow
Description:Shoots an arrow at the enemy from a great distance with high accuracy but low damage.
note:Needs Assassin's Arrow (Level 5)
-an instant super-long-range attack that hits hard but has a massive 90 second cooldown. I would not recommend getting this skill for general use, and I know of no-one who's leveled beyond lv 1. Might be useful in PVP due to range and instant cast time.

Hunter's Instincts

--Unerring Aim
Description:Concentrates the user's powers, giving double accuracy for the duration.
note:Covered by Focus (from Swordsman Martyr Arts)
-decent accuracy buff. worth getting just for tier 2 skill Ready for Action.

--Sneak Peek
Description:When activated, the HP of the enemy can be seen, and invisibility can be detected as well.
-only has 1 level. useful for PVP, invisible monsters, or those curious about boss HP. needed for Aim.

--Concentrated Fury
Description:Uses an extra % attack time to increase attack by %. Reduces magical accuracy at the same time.
note:does not stack with Burning Rage or All-Out Assault (from Swordsman Martyr Arts)
- A massive attack buff with a massive magic accuracy and attack speed debuff. Not a great buff fighting skill - level 1 all-out assault is better than fury at max level. Useless as a buff for skill fighting, unless you can overcome the debuff (if you can, fury becomes the best physical skill buff in the game, but it's not easy to achieve) It will do more damage per arrow, which may be desirable. If you DO take it, max it - At high level it can be kept always-on, and it's power boost increases to ~33% for regular attacks and 240% for skills. Notably stacks with Martial Hex from witchdoctor. To re-iterate: not recommended AT ALL unless you are focusing on buff-based fighting and have nothing better, or if you are confident you can buff your way into positive magic accuracy for skillspamming.

--Ankle Strike
Description:Aims for the ankle of the enemy, reducing movement speed for 30 seconds (1/3 against other players).
-useful skill for hunters who party with melee fighters. Worth raising to 5 to get Weak Spotter for most players. This is a particularly good skill if you're teamed up with melee fighters, as otherwise the mob will chase you around with them in tow and they won't get a chance to hit it at all. It's kinda funny, but frustrating for the other players, and counterproductive.

Description:Calms the enemy and reduces their bad feeling toward you.
-an "okay" skill, but not a must-have. only really useful to lose aggro when you have too many monsters. relatively long cooldown, so not easily usable on multiple monsters attacking you.

--Ready For Action
Description:Readies the user for combat, raising attack, defense, magical attack, magical defense, accuracy and evasion.
note:Needs Unerring Aim (Level 5)
- Single best buff in any job, in my opinion. long lasting, but has a 30-40 second gap between duration and cooldown, otherwise nearly perfect self-buff - with some agility it can be always on. maxes out as a 10% buff of all those stats. Stacks with all other buffs.

Description:Concentrates and locks onto the enemy, increasing attack speed, but reducing movement speed and evasion.
Stacks with Premonition (Thief skill) but covers Lash Out (Swordsman skill)
note:Needs Sneak Peek (Level 1)
-very strong attack speed buff but duration reduces and cooldown increases for each level. Beyond level 4 it will not be possible to keep this buff constantly applied, even with a full agility build. When purely buff-fighting using a weapon with negative attack speed, the highest average attack speed this skill provides is reached at Aim Level 7. This appears to be true in all cases except with a high agility and attack speed is never allowed to drop below 0, in which case Level 10 provides the maximum average attack speed.

--Poison Weapon
Applies poison to the user's weapon. Enemies hit have a chance of being poisoned and losing HP every 5 seconds for 6 minutes.
note:Needs Concentrated Fury (Level 5)
-It's a buff that works on the first hit after casting, so in effect this is a single target attack with both instant damage and a fixed damage-over-time component. It's basically ok but not a must-have. I would not recommend taking this unless you are solely focusing on the Hunters Instincts skill tree. stacks with and works with witchdoctor poison-related skills.

--Weak Spotter
Description:Analyzes the enemy's weak points, increasing the chance of a critical attack.
note:Needs Ankle Strike (Level 5)
-excellent for buff-based fighters of any class, as they will achieve a substantial critical rate. Note that maximum critical rate is capped at 33.

--Go For the Throat
Description:Attacks the enemy's throat, stopping them from using skills for 29 seconds (1/4 against other players).
note:Needs Appease (Level 5)
-another "okay" skill. probably not worth the 5 ranks of appease needed, unless you're building for PVP. Potentially useful against magic attack monsters , but the long cooldown means it can't be used as a substitute for robes or dancewear.

APPENDIX 2:a note on PVP

PVP in this game is tacked-on and terrible! If you crave PVP, you'd be better off playing one of the MMORPGs that are built around it as a central concept. On the other hand, IC domo just released a guildwar feature.

other than that, IMO Hunter's a PVP sub, not a main job. The two best PVP skills (sneak peek and go for the throat) are both sub-able. If you want to use hunter for PVP you'll have to build for full Agi and kite like heck to stay out of skill range. It's very good at killing invisible thieves though....

This guide is getting so big - I never expected to go this far, and I've learned a lot about hunter just from making it»
THANKS TO:Nagisa, Akumi, Topoi, Zes, RinnSohma, AKFrost, scheherazade and a whole host of other people for helping me compile this, helping me test crazy theories, feedback, or providing vital info online! - Zathura

If you have any comments, corrections or insults please contact me on the here, the GT forum or my wikia userpage(no login required!):

Mod Edit: Stickeh!