Hunters. I love 'em. Beast, Marks, even bot specced, I love 'em.
My first character was a Dwarven Hunter and years later my main is a Night Elf Hunter. The only problem that I have is that after a while the fighting style never really changes. Sure, the talents add a little spice, but all Hunters pretty much fight the same... either solo (have pet tank the mob while you shoot it to death) or in a group (send your pet in while you shoot the target). So, pretty much all Hunters are seen as fulfilling a single role, Ranged DPS.
I got to thinking about that. To me the Hunter is more than loosely based off of the D&D ranger. And I've always seen three main ways to play that class: Legolas, Tarzan, or Drizzt. Well, I've done both the Legolas Marks build and the Tarzan Beast build before. Now it's time to see if we can get the Drizzt role going. Time for a Melee Hunter.
Truth be told, I've always wanted to do a Melee Hunter, but between seeing what was offered in melee abilities and the general public feeling that hunters just shouldn't melee, I decided to follow the masses. This all changed a few weeks ago. I was getting disillusioned from all the hybrids in my guild being able to change their role to fill in wherever. Sure it'll cost them 50 gold and gear to do so, but they had the option. And I didn't... or did I?
Maybe hunters can do something else besides shoot. So I started tossing thoughts about in my head, and came to this conclusion: A properly played melee specced hunter can be an excellent off-tank that still retains DPS and CC capabilities.