4.3.2 just had a decent victory for Hunters through Vial of Shadows fix and Arcane Shot removed from Lock and Load.
The only thing remaining that I would really ike to see, seeing as there's no way we'll be let in on the 10% AP buff, is to boost Black Arrow's damage so it's used over Explosive Trap. After their 4.3 Lock and Load ICD adjustment, Explosive Trap is currently a 1-2k DPS gain over Black Arrow assuming proper timing, which is the reason for Survival's place on the meters currently (mid pack at best.) This makes an extremely clunky feel to the combat system and feels just feels wrong to forgo the use of Black Arrow at all. It also penalizes the Hunter greatly for latency or the boss making a quick movement which would then waste the cooldown entirely for no damage or procs.
Survival damage is in a relatively "decent" place especially after these patch changes. Just buff Black Arrow so Survival can reliably maintain the damage instead of taking a crapshoot on Explosive Trap to be mid pack.
Lock and Load not being caused by Arcane Shot is an intentional change. As many players have pointed out, there is just no need for it any longer.
We also intend to make sure Black Arrow is used over Explosive Trap, probably by buffing Black Arrow slightly.
We are looking a lot at hunter DPS right now. We think it is in a good place when compared to other ranged DPS specs (in equivalent gear), but falls short when compared to ranged DPS with Dragonwrath. The guilds currently posting heroic combat logs have a lot of Dragonwraths, and unfortunately, hunters are the only ranged DPS who don’t have access to a legendary weapon. When more hunters have Deathwing weapons, their DPS will go up compared to the Dragonwrath users who won’t be upgrading their weapons, and we’ll see what hunter performance looks like.
It’s likely that future legendaries won’t be usable by so many classes and specs. For the present situation, one option is to just buff hunters to make up for their inability to have legendary weapons, but when you look at DPS casters who have no legendary, it's a tough option to take. We’re not sure yet of the future of the attack power buff in Mists of Pandaria, but in the short term we want to make sure that there are some situations where melee can do really high DPS rather than routinely coming in below ranged DPS (which is how we felt about the last two raid tiers).
If we buff hunters, it will more likely be through other avenues.