I just saw this question on the forum.
I love hunters and was going to make one but after everything that I have read about them being broken it is making me hesitate a bit.
Are hunters really broken?
No, we aren't. However, a Hunter does require more attention to detail if you really want to play one well, IMHO. As an example...
You're in a five man instance. Someone's marked a target for you to trap. You've got to drop a trap, pull the target over, lead it into the trap, and then make sure autoshoot doesn't hit the trap once you've done it. Is a Paladin using Consecrate nearby, or is someone else using aoe? That could break the trap, so you'd better check.
Then after you get the mob trapped, you're expected to dps the skull target, so you send your pet. You have to make sure Growl is off because otherwise the pet will pull aggro from the tank. You also have to make sure that while you've got enough range to shoot, you don't stand too far back, because if you do you might pull adds and wipe the group; better check your minimap for that. You also need to watch mana efficiency in your rotation. Are you going to use Steady Shot only, or Arcane as well? Are you going to use Aspect of the Viper to maintain your mana supply if this is a long fight, or Aspect of the Hawk for increased damage?
Is your shot rotation up to scratch? You'll need a good one if you want high dps against that skull target, but even though multishot is your highest damage shot, you'd better not use it in your rotation, because if you do, you'll break your trap, and a sheep if there is one, and wipe the group. Are you using the highest quality ammunition that you can get? If you're not, your damage against that target will also be lower.
As you send your pet, you notice his happiness is down a bit, which means his damage output will also be lower in this fight. You'd better remember to feed him in time for the next fight. Did you bring enough pet food with you for the duration of the instance? Is your pet set to passive? You'd better make sure he is, otherwise he could chase the mob he's attacking if it runs, which could bring adds, and cause a wipe.
So, once your pet is set to passive and set on the target, you start your shot rotation against the mob. You need to time your shots carefully for maximum damage, and you can't use a macro if you want max damage, either. While you're shooting the mob, and keeping an eye on your pet to make sure he doesn't run wild, bring adds, and wipe the group, you're also keeping an eye on your timer addon for when your trap breaks. You'll need to keep that mob on you until you can get another trap down, because if the mob gets free and gets to the healers...
You get the idea. The above example also assumes that you're not the one setting raid targets for the group. ;-)