Feign Death is a hunter ability learned at level 32. It causes the hunter to appear dead. The hunter loses all aggro, which causes the enemy to stop attacking them and either flee back to its "territory", attack the hunter's pet, or attack whomever has the next highest threat. This skill is not always successful because nearby enemies do have a chance based on your relative level to resist this effect.
Feign Death can be used in the event the hunter has a bad pull, assuming no one else has generated threat against the mob.
Using feign death exits the hunter from combat, allowing for such things as eating, mounting, or other activities not possible while in combat. This can also be helpful if needing to afk for a short duration, due to the fact that passing mobs will act as if the hunter is dead.
For PvP encounters, this will cause enemies to drop you as a target. For spellcasters, this means they will have to start casting again; rogues will lose any generated combo points if they do not respond quickly enough; and minions/pets will stop attacking. Sometimes players can also be fooled into thinking a hunter is dead, especially if they are in a rush.
With soloing instances, a hunter can run through a large pack of mobs and feign death in a relatively safe area. The mobs will reset, and the technique can then be repeated. This is especially effective when paired with [Deterrence]. Obviously the pet should be dismissed beforehand, otherwise it will draw the aggro and be killed.
For night elves with the [Shadowmeld] racial, it is possible to stand into the Shadowmeld, thereby not re-aggroing mobs. This is provided nearby mobs cannot detect the hunter due to being a high enough level or having a detection ability.
As the level (relative to the hunter) and number of enemies become higher, the likelihood of the spell being resisted becomes higher.
Moving or performing any action while feigning death will cancel the spell.
Turning the camera with the right mouse button WILL cancel Feign Death, so get in the habit of using the left mouse button while feigning.
As an additional note to the above, if you are turning with the right mouse button when you feign death, you will not drop down, the mobs will not stop attacking you, but the ability will go on cooldown anyway. Stop moving, then feign.
If the 6 minute timer runs out, the hunter will lose feign death and simply stand up.
No combat log message is generated, your pet will not disappear, and no honor points are granted so any experienced PvP opponents will notice that you are not really dead. While players will lose targeting if they have you targeted when you feign, they can still re-target you and attack you while you are feigning death.
Be aware that enemies that are a lower level than the hunter DO have a minute chance of resisting Feign Death.
If you are using Feign Death to drop accidental adds, any party member close enough to the mob to be aggroed himself will be the recipient of anything that was attacking you. If it's a cloth wearer, it may be smarter to use other methods of add control, like Freezing Trap, kiting, or pet tanking to occupy their attention until the current group is dead.
If you accidentally cancel Feign Death immediately after casting, the mobs may never stop attacking you, despite no "Resisted" message ever appearing.
Chance to resist
And so on (+11% for each additional level). Basically this means that against higher level mobs, feign death was more likely to fail in the past. If there is a high level mob when you feign death, there is a better chance that the feign death will be resisted.
During controlled testing these tables were confirmed to be correct. This isn’t to say that other feign death bugs may be occurring, but as for the actual resist formulas, you now have them to compare to. If anyone finds data that is off from these tables when testing, please let us know the location, level, mobs, players, etc so that we can reproduce the issue and research it. Remember though that higher fire/frost/etc resistances can allow mobs/players to resist more.
Patch 2.3.0 (13-Nov-2007): Fixed a bug in which Hunters were able to disengage from combat using Feign Death during boss encounters.
/Patch 2.0.1 (05-Dec-2006): No longer kills players when the timer runs out.
Patch 1.11.2 (11-Jul-2006): Players are no longer able to animate emotes while using Feign Death.
Patch 1.7.0 (13-Sep-2005): Fixed bug where you couldn't right click to attack a hunter who is feigning death. Feign Death can no longer be resisted by players.
Patch 1.2.0 (18-Dec-2004): Hunters can no longer sit while under the effects of Feign Death. Hunters will no longer show mana while they are under the effects of Feign Death.