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I just started a Tauren Hunter - I plan to be solo most of the time, and I don't PvP at all. This is my first hunter, and I'm having a great time with him so far. What are considered "ideal" professions in my situation? I'm interested to hear your suggestions!

Note: I do have Wrath of the Lich King and the Burning Crusade expansions.

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Do you have other characters? How much is making or spending gold a concern for you? –  LessPop_MoreFizz Oct 1 '10 at 23:29
    
I do have a few other characters, most are low-level, but I do have a 68 Undead Warrior, so he can make some cash for me if need be. –  Pwninstein Oct 1 '10 at 23:43
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3 Answers

up vote 8 down vote accepted

If you're not min-maxing at the level cap, your best bet will generally be at least one, if not two, of the three Gathering professions, Skinning, Mining, and Herbalism. If you do decide to take a crafting profession, choose the gathering profession that meshes most closely with it (i.e., if you take Leatherworking, grab Skinning, Engineering, grab Mining, or Alchemy or Inscription, take Herbalism.)

If you want to make money using a crafting profession, the best choice before the cap will be Inscription, as the Glyphs you can produce as early as level 5 will be used even by level 80 characters, providing you with a constant market.

If you want to produce things you yourself will use on a regular basis, Engineering provides fun toys, and trinkets at much lower levels than they'll be availiable as drops. Leatherworking allows you to make your own armor, but drops and quest rewards will, for the most part, be better than what you can craft - at least until the Cataclysm expansion releases. Alchemy will allow you to make a variety of useful consumables, but in general, you will have to make many more than you'll be able to use as you level, and there won't be much of a market for what you craft.

Enchanting is a viable option as well, and you'll be able to enchant your own gear as you level, which is handy.

Realistically, until the +Stat bonuses at 400+ skill come into play, there really isn't a 'best' or 'most useful' profession. There are a few that will be much less useful to you as a hunter, such as Blacksmithing and Tailoring, but for the most part, you should be fine picking out whatever you find fun.

The only other major note worth making is that each of the three gathering professions provides a free 'passive' boost as well. Mining will give you some extra Stamina for free, Skinning will give your character increased critical strike chance, and Herbalism will teach you Lifeblood, a free Heal-Over-Time spell you can cast on yourself on a short cooldown. The crit from Skinning especially should be very handy for a low level hunter, though the other two perks are nothing to sneeze at either.

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Very good info, thanks a lot!! –  Pwninstein Oct 2 '10 at 3:42
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One other useful thing about engineering for a hunter, is that at higher levels it allows you to make your own ammunition. Ammunition is being removed in Cataclysm, though, so this won't be a benefit for that much longer.

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Also good to know, didn't know that. Thanks! –  Pwninstein Oct 2 '10 at 19:40
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As a hunter I strongly recommend skinning as your focus picks up nicely from the crit buddy you get, and if you're soloing a lot you're probably grinding beasts and the best part of skinning is that you get to loot skinnable mobs twice. The other gathering professions are okay because you're in the world gathering, but skinning puts it right under your nose from being a killing machine.

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For Max dps note that everyone says eng/jc is the way to go –  mfg Oct 23 '10 at 3:30
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