Hit Rating

What is ‘hit’?

It’s exactly what it says – to hit something – to do damage to it – rather than to miss it.

What’s the difference between ‘spell hit’ and ‘hit’?

Again, it’s exactly what it says – but easy to miss it when equipping pieces of armor sometimes. Spell hit is for casters; hit is for ranged and melee. Armor that says +hit on it will NOT benefit casters unless it says +Spell Hit; armor that says +spell hit will NOT benefit hunters and melee classes.

Why should I care about hit rating?

The higher your hit rating, the less likely you are to miss your target (i.e. your arrow goes through his heart not his hat, you sword chops his arm not swings wild :> )
If you don’t hit you don’t do any damage, and you can’t crit. So all the crit and attack power in the world won’t help much if you miss half the time.

When is hit important?

Hit is most important in boss fights. Bosses in level 70 instances are counted as level 73s. You are more likely to miss a mob that is several levels higher than you, so you need more hit to help you miss him less often.
For many end game raiders (especially classes like hunters and rogues) hit should be almost the No.1 stat that you stack, until you meet the hit cap for your class (more below). 
Hit can also help you to take on mobs several levels higher than yourself, or to take on a pvp opponent higher than yourself, but it is really a pve rather than a pvp stat.

The math behind hit – you need to know this

15.8 hit rating points = +1% chance to hit (melee and ranged at level 70)

At max. weapon skill, with a ranged weapon,a hunter has a 5% chance to miss a similar level opponent, if you have no hit rating.At max. weapon skill, with a 2h weapon, you have a 5% chance to miss a similar level opponent, if you have no hit rating.
At max. weapon skill, dual wielding, you have a whopping 24% chance to a similar level opponent, if you have no hit rating.

At max. weapon skill, with a ranged weapon,a hunter has a 9% chance to miss a level 73 boss, if you have no hit rating.

At max. weapon skill, with a 2h weapon, you have a 9% chance to miss a level 73 boss, if you have no hit rating.
At max. weapon skill, dual weilding, you have a whopping 28% chance to a level 73 boss, if you have no hit rating.

Different classes also have talents that improve their hit rating. If you take these talents, you have to stack less hit on your armor.
Below is a table of the hit cap for each class, with and without talent points (hunter 1st of course):

Hunter
(range) 142

(with surefooted) 95

Druid
(melee) 142

Rogue
(dual wield) 442
(with precision) 363

(special attacks – counts as 1h) 142
(with precision) 63

Shaman
(dual wield) 442
(with natures guidance) 395
(with dual wield specialization) 348
(with both talents) 300

(2h/or 1h with shield/or special attacks) 142
(with natures guidance) 95

Warrior 
(dual wield) 442
(with precision) 395

(2h/or 1h with shield/or special attacks) 142
(with precision) 95

Paladin
(melee) 142
(with precision) 95

Other factors that can improve your hit rating:
If there is a Draenai hunter/warrior/paladin in your GROUP (not your raid – this doesn’t cut across groups in the raid) they add 1% (15.8) to your chance to hit (you see it as an aura buff)
Druids Improved Faerie Fire (balance talent) give 3% (47) chance to hit – however not many druids have this as there are too many other good talents this deep into the tree to choose instead.

Eating Spicy Hot Talbuk food will give you a +20 hit rating buff (just over +1%)

As well as selecting gear that improves hit you can also gem your gear with +hit gems, which is often a quick and easy way to improve your hit.

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