If you haven't checked it out, head over to the skill calculator. They've redone every class's skills and they're much more balanced (at least the ones available in the Beta). There's also some mistakes, for example, Entangling Shot is supposed to Generate hatred yet its Golden Runestone is still listed as reducing Hatred cost to 12.
The following is an analysis and comparison of single-target Demon Hunter damage skills:
HUNGERING ARROW: (Calculation explanation)
- UNRUNED: 287.5% Weapon Damage
- CRIMSON: 687.5% Weapon Damage (If it's 160% Fire damage OVER 5 seconds)
- INDIGO: 1495% Weapon Damage
- GOLDEN: 2300% Weapon Damage
- OBSIDIAN: 850% Weapon Damage
- ALABASTER: 287.5% Single Target Damage + 600%*(Crit%) AoE Damage
Still no balance here. Totally crazy numbers.
- UNRUNED: 100% Normal Attack DPS per second (Pretty much same as normal attack except you can move)
- ALABASTER: (300% * CRIT% + 100% ) Normal Attack DPS per second (Assuming a crit increases the 50% Weapon damage by 4x to 200%)
- CRIMSON: 120% AoE Normal Attack DPS /second (9 yard AoE)
- GOLDEN: 100% Normal Attack DPS per second (You can walk at normal speed.)
- INDIGO: 150% Normal Attack DPS per second
- OBSIDIAN: Not Enough Information
- UNRUNED: 210% Normal Attack DPS per second
- ALABASTER: 210% Normal Attack DPS per second (Plus slow)
- CRIMSON: 108% AoE Normal Attack DPS / second (10 yard AoE)
- GOLDEN: 210% Normal Attack DPS per second (Initial Hatred Reduction)
- INDIGO: 210% ~ 700% Normal Attack DPS per second (70% pierce chance = 3.33 hits per shot on average. With an unlimited supply of mobs, you'll do 700% Normal Attack DPS on average)
- OBSIDIAN: 210% Normal Attack DPS per second + 350% Weapon Damage per second (Homing Missiles not based on attack speed?)
Kinda-sorta balanced. Rapid Fire's crimson is pretty weak though. Slightly larger AoE, but less damage than Strafe on top of the heavy hatred consumption. Its only saving grace is that you can aim it yourself unlike Strafe.
- INDIGO: 160% (AoE) + 1980% Weapon Damage (rockets)
If those rockets don't deal AoE damage, this skill is junk. Was the best skill available before, but with the huge hatred cost increase, it needs a damn good damage boost to make up for that. As it is, it's not even better than Golden Hungering Arrow unless you get the Ballistics passive, or unless the rockets deal AoE damage.
HUNGERING ARROW VS IMPALE:
- UNRUNED Hungering Arrow: 287.5% Weapon Damage (Average)
- UNRUNED Impale: 325% Weapon Damage
At first I thought this was a pretty good balance. Hungering Arrow is now weaker than impale, rather than the other way around as it was before. However, I wasn't considering Impale's huge hatred cost. If they're going to keep these damage numbers, Impale needs its hatred cost reduced to about 5.
HUNGERING ARROW VS AoEs:
GOLDEN Hungering Arrow: 2300% Weapon Damage
- CRIMSON Impale: 358% Weapon Damage per Target
- CRIMSON Bola Shot: 28% Weapon Damage + 82% Weapon Damage per Target
- CRIMSON Multishot: 330% Weapon Damage per Target
- CRIMSON Chakram: 210%*2 Weapon Damage per Target
- CRIMSON Elemental Arrow: 160% Weapon Damage per Target
- 2300% / 358% = 6.4 targets for Impale to match Hungering Arrow
- (2300%-28%) / 82% = 27.7 targets for Bola Shot to match Hungering Arrow
- 2300% / 330% = 7.0 targets for Multishot to match Hungering Arrow
- 2300% / 210% = 11.0 HITS for Chakram to match Hungering Arrow
- 2300% / 160% = 14.3 targets for Elemental Arrow to match Hungering Arrow
Impale, Multishot, and Chakram look pretty decent. Chakram has two projectiles, so it can hit the same target twice, putting it about on par with the other two. If the demo video of a Barbarian that Blizzard released months ago is any indication, harder levels will have plenty more than 7 enemies per wave.
On the other hand, Bola Shot Crimson is complete and total crap. 28 targets to match Hungering Arrow? It's way too high. No reason to ever use it. Elemental Arrow is saved only because of its super low Hatred cost, but I really suspect Chakram will be better.