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Comprehensive Guide to Rogues in 3.0
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***NOTE: After some thought, I am willing to elaborate on this topic but needed more room, thus, Malgayne is having me recreate the thread. Link to the original thread is
for reference to comments thus far. Please post all further discussion in this thread.
Comprehensive Guide to Rogues in 3.0.2
Hopefully this will answer some of the questions that are flooding every WoW forum in existence right now. Copious amounts of feedback is requested. I would like to acknowledge Furyterra for his awesome guide where I found alot of this information. The full guide can be found
. Also, the PvE / WotLK Rogue Discussion from the EJ Forums, found
Table of Contents
Leveling & Lockpicking
Macros & Addons
This is an updated Rogue guide for 3.0 with new talents, abilities, specs, itemization, etc. The original Rogue Compendium can be found
for those who would like to reference it. This guide is intended to layout some of the basics of the Rogue class, while also incorporating some of the changes that the class has/is undergoing with the upcoming expansion. All feedback is welcomed, and it is encouraged that you post any suggestions or changes that will improve this thread.
1.a Useful Resources
Official Rogue Forums
Elitist Jerks Forums
Parry Dodge Spin
Disarm the enemy, removing all weapons, shield or other equipment carried for 10 sec.
The only trainable spell pre-70 that Rogues are privy to. Removes any weapons, shields, off-hands, etc. from the target for 10 seconds. Considered a disarm effect, cannot be trinketed. Effectively used as a crowd control method against melee, and a stat reduction for all classes.
Hunger For Blood
Enrages you, increasing all damage caused by 3%. If used while a Bleed effect is afflicting you, it will attempt to remove it and refund 15 energy. This effect can be stacked up to 3 times. Lasts 30 sec.
The 51 point talent in the Assassination Tree. Removes bleed effects for an obvious damage reduction, also allows easy stealth re-entry. Viewed largely as underpowered by most of the Rogue community, it is required to refresh the damage boost every 30 seconds in order to stay active, making it tedious in a Mutilate raid rotation.
Step through the shadows from enemy to enemy within 10 yards, attacking an enemy every .5 secs with both weapons until 5 assaults are made. Can hit the same target multiple times. Cannot hit invisible or stealthed targets.
The 51 point talent in the Combat Tree. Allows for poison application and auto attacks for the duration, but does not give you control of the character, so no other abilities can be cast. Some have suggested a weapon swap macro similar to the one listed below for your offhand weapon to a slow, harder hitting weapon, in order to maximize the damage output.
/equipslot 17 <Weapon Name>
/cast Killing Spree
Enter the Shadow Dance, allowing the use of Sap, Garrotte, Ambush, Cheap Shot, Premeditation, Pickpocket and Disarm Trap regardless of being stealthed. Those abilities each gain a cooldown of 2 sec. Lasts 10 sec.
The 51 point talent in the Subtlety Tree. Looked down upon by most of the Rogue Community as inferior and a "keybind nightmare". Since its release on live, it is gaining a fanbase, and has serious burst potential. It is recommended you use the following macros to make the keybind process much easier to manage.
Macro 1 (this changes your actionbar to a different page where you can layout all spells for the duration of Shadow Dance):
/cast Shadow Dance
Macro 2 (put this on the bar that is setup for Shadow Dance to change back to your normal bar after the "dance" is over.):
Tricks of the Trade
The current party or raid member becomes the target of your Tricks of the Trade. The threat caused by your next attack and all actions taken for 6 sec afterwards will be transferred to the target. In addition, all damage caused by the target is increased by 15% during this time.
Ghetto Misdirect, but with the change to tanking, with tanks doing more damage, it is actually worth it. Not to mention in PvP throwing it on your partner.
Fan of Knives
Instantly throw both weapons at all targets within 8 yards, causing 100% weapon damage.
Crap damage at the moment. For 50 energy I hope they change its output. Does proc Focused Attacks atm though.
3. Revised Abilities
A strike that becomes active after parrying an opponent's attack. This attack deals 150% weapon damage and slows their melee attack speed by 20% for 30 sec. Awards 1 combo point.
Used to be a dumbed down version of the current Dismantle, now a much easier spell to obtain with the decreased point allocation required in Deflection. Still not a
spell by any means, but a definite plus for any Combat-heavy build.
Attempts to step through the shadows and reappear behind your enemy and increases movement speed by 70% for 3 sec. The damage of your next ability is increased by 20% and the threat caused is reduced by 50%. Lasts 10 sec.
Appears to be the exact same according to the tooltip, however, Blizzard has changed the mechanics of the spell to no longer be castable while rooted (i.e.
Chains of Ice
3.c Cooldown Changes
Most existing Rogue abilities that maintain a cooldown have had their cooldown time changed. Here is a list of the new cooldowns:
Evasion: 3 minutes (2 minutes with 2/2
Blind: 3 minutes (2 minute with 2/2
Vanish: 3 minutes (2 minute with 2/2
Sprint: 3 minutes (2 minutes with 2/2
, 1 minute with
Glyph of Sprint
Cloak of Shadows: 1.5 minutes (1 minute with 2/2
4. Talent Specs
4.a PvE Talent Specs
As it stands, there are really only 3 viable PvE raiding specs. There are also a few things to take into consideration when choosing talents.
only works on certain Mob types, thus, any mobs that are not "Murderable" will see a shift in performance favoring Combat Swords over Mutilate builds--at least until 80 with the introduction of Naxx 25 gear. Also, later in this section I mention the changes to the poison mechanisms, so be aware of where you are choosing to fill out your trees so you know which poisons to use. Lastly, due to the overhaul of raid buff stacking (raid comp calculator found
) it isn't necessary to take points in
if an Elemental Shaman or Retribution Paladin are in the raid, as they provide the same buff. If this is the situation, it is encouraged that you take
Turn the Tables
This is the Assassination spec that has been given the most praise on the
as the top performing DPS Spec. The rotation does vary with this setup, and it is recommended as with any Raiding Build that you consult a spreadsheet for proper rotations. Vulajin's Roguecraft Sheet can be found
. The general rule of thumb has been stated from a few different sources, and I want to link it here, as I believe its a much easier way of describing how "by the seat of your pants" DPS goes:
Keep Hunger for Blood and Slice and Dice up 100% of the time.
Maximize your Rupture uptime.
Do as many 4+ combo point Envenoms (NEVER EVISCERATE) without breaking the first two rules.
*NOTE: Some have found that with the S&D glyph, and 2 piece T4 set, you
take 3/5 RS and 2/2 Opportunity. Without these additions it would be near impossible to keep the rotation up.
Combat Swords, essentially the same as what has been most successful thus far in Burning Crusade, the rotation is the same. Again, consult a spreadsheet for the precise information, but the general idea is to keep Slice and Dice up 100% of the time, while maximizing your Rupture uptime. Haste effects stack, so its more beneficial for you to use things like
, drums, and
in congruence with each other for the best results. The points in Endurance and Improved Sprint are filler and can be put wherever you like.
Combat Fist/Sword. Taking 5/5 Close Quarters Combat over 5/5 Sword Specialization has proven to be the best way to distribute the points when choosing pure DPS talents.
Surprisingly enough, there have been a few WWS reports that can show this spec as being worth something beyond a gimmick. Better suited for 10 / 25 mans than Heroics, but still behind Mutilate.
4.b PvP Talent Specs
Vile Poisons were changed so now the difference is Imp. KS & Find Weakness which I took as +2% per rank being greater than +damage only during Kidney Shot since players often trinket out of Kidney Shot anyway.
Shadow Dance spec that utilizes slow, hard hitting weapons with Hemo, and uses Shadow Dance for control through Cheap Shot and Garrote Silences.
New version of the old HARP build (minus of course the cooldown reset of AR on Prep
Here I will layout the glyph choices for Major Glyphs only; where they are best used, and which ones to avoid. Please provide feedback on this portion as much as possible.
5.a Major Glyphs
Glyph of Ambush
: If you need another 5 yards to Ambush, you are doing it wrong.
Glyph of Feint
Glyph of Expose Armor
: Only viable if you have a druid or pally tank and are the Rogue assigned to EA, even then, there may be better choices.
Glyph of Garrote
: 20% more damage? Yes please. Note, this doesn't change the silence duration. A good choice for any build in PvP.
Glyph of Sap
: Meh. Rogues are rarely used for their crowd control, and all CC is capped at 10 seconds in PvP. I'd pass.
Glyph of Slice and Dice
: Must Have for any serious raiding Rogue.
Glyph of Sprint
: No longer useful in PvP. You ulitmately cover the same distance, just getting there faster.
Glyph of Evasion
: No need in PvE. In PvP, its good, but with only 2 available slots, there are better options. I don't see this one being utilized entirely until 80.
Glyph of Gouge
: Gouge scales with Attack Power now. Doing 1K+ damage on a Gouge makes this especially useful. Extremely useful for any build using Backstab due to its positional requirements.
Glyph of Backstab
: Incredibly useful for PvP, not so much in PvE.
Glyph of Eviscerate
: I haven't gotten a chance to read up on any numbers for how Eviscerate is scaling with the glyph along with the change to Improved Eviscerate. I see this as a valid choice when using Eviscerate when paired with Cut to the Chase since there isn't a Mutilate Glyph.
Glyph of Sinister Strike
: Combat Rogues raiding should take this one without question. At 80, tack on the Rupture Glyph and rock faces off.
Glyph of Rupture
: Combat Rogues raiding should take this one without question.
Glyph of Ghostly Strike
: I only see this being used in a solo situation or if you don't have a better alternative.
Glyph of Crippling Poison
: Good for PvP, especially Combat and Subtlety Rogues that sacrifice another poison for Crippling, making its application all that much more important.
Glyph of Preparation
: Incredibly weak, I would skip it no matter what.
Glyph of Hemorrhage
: Has potential, but the debuff isn't whats wrong with Hemo right now.
Glyph of Blade Flurry
: Good for Raiding but unfortunately won't ever get chosen over the others.
Glyph of Adrenaline Rush
: See comment for Blade Flurry.
Glyph of Deadly Throw
: If you are Combat PvP and have points to put the silence back on this, its good.
Glyph of Vigor
: Must have for PvP Rogues, especially Mutilate
6. Gear Itemization
Here are the links to the spreadsheets you will see myself and others praise so much, learn them well. If you don't like spreadsheets, you picked the wrong class.
The Roguecraft Spreadsheet
The Roguecraft Spreadsheet LK spOOn v3
(unofficial update for WOTLK)
(still in the early stages)
6.a Mutilate Myths and Realities
The difference between a fast off hand and a slow off hand is negligible. Do not pass on an upgrade because its not the right speed.
Having a fast main hand dagger is actually BETTER. With the changes to poisons along with Focused Attacks, its worth taking the hit on your Mutilate damage to gain from the other two.
6.b Combat. Swords, Fists or Maces?
Combat Swords will still outperform Combat Maces. Combat Mace/Sword gets close, but a fist weapon is still better. If you go with dual weapon specialization, make sure its CQC and SS.
The changes that WotLK brought to gear itemization has allowed a Fist/Dagger spec to emerge using a Fist in the Main Hand and a Dagger in the off hand. Testing on this is rare, but it has developed a following that swear by it and shouldn't be snubbed as inferior.
Poisons are a whole new monster. They scale with attack power, making their contribution to your overall DPS much more significant.
now increases the chance to hit with Poisons, thus the total hit rating you need to reach the Poison cap is 214 (151 with 5/5 Precision) (at 70).
Untalented, Wound Poison will always out perform over Instant Poison due to the increased application rate, and superior scaling.
Octaviann on the EJ forums posted this, and it rocks:
Wound Poison VII Damage (per attack)= .5*(231+.04*AP)=115.5+.02*AP
0/5 Improved Poisons Instant Poison IX Damage(per attack)= .2*(300+.1*AP)=60+.02*AP
1/5 IP Instant Poison IX Damage= .22*(300+.1*AP)=66+.022*AP
2/5 IP Instant Poison IX Damage= .24*(300+.1*AP)=72+.024*AP
3/5 IP Instant Poison IX Damage= .26*(300+.1*AP)=78+.026*AP
4/5 IP Instant Poison IX Damage= .28*(300+.1*AP)=84+.028*AP
5/5 IP Instant Poison IX Damage= .30*(300+.1*AP)=90+.03*AP
Setting one of the Instant Poison VIII expressions equal to the Wound Poison VII expressions and solving the resulting equation for AP gives the attack power needed for Instant Poison VIII to give equal poison damage per attack to Wound Poison VII. Any attack power above this value favors Instant Poison VIII, except where noted, and any value below this value favors Wound Poison.
0/5 Improved Poisons: No attack power will ever make Instant Poison VIII equal or exceed Wound Poison VII at any gear level; Wound Poison VII is always better without any points in Improved Poisons.
1/5 Improved Poisons: 24750 AP
2/5 Improved Poisons: 10875 AP
3/5 Improved Poisons: 6250 AP
4/5 Improved Poisons: ~3938 AP
5/5 Improved Poisons: 2550 AP
6.d What stats should I focus on?
There is not, never was, and never will be a magic number that you must reach for any given stat. That being said, here is a list of each stat and where it stands for priority.
I want to mention
that you should consult a spreadsheet before taking this on faith, as it will differ depending on your raid make up, progression level, gear level, and spec choice.
Attack Power - Should be fairly obvious, produces more DPS output for a Rogue than any other stat. Top of the list right here.
Agility - Another big hitter...literally. White damage is your best scaling attack, and with the changes to raid buffing, Rogues are seeing a drop in attack power, so this has seen a nice boost in necessity.
Expertise - All Rogues should be attacking from behind, but lets face it, due to the mechanics of alot of fights, this doesn't always happen. Expertise is fairly easy to cap (102 Expertise Rating, not including any talents, racials, or items/enchants.)
Haste Rating - Not alot has changed, more haste = faster swings. It increases your procs for poisons, procs (trinkets, enchants, etc) and
for energy regeneration.
Armor Penetration - As of 3.0 Armor Penetration has been (for the most part) changed to a percentage based system of armor ignored. More on this
Hit Rating - First, with white damage only doing ~53% of your damage now, and with the change to the Windfury totem along with the increased poison damage (~17%), hit has dropped substantially compared to what it used to be. Furyterra from Stormrage EU has an awesome chart for all hit caps. You can find it
Crit Rating - With the addition of
Prey on the Weak
, the Sinister Strike glyph, and the poison changes (Instant and Deadly Poisons can crit), this is pumping our damage up even more than it used to.
**Special note: Crit, Hit, ArP, and Haste are all very close as far as weighting goes, which is significantly far behind Agility and Attack Power.
Expertise - WIth a larger energy cost on your main attack, and a larger damage portion to your overall DPS coming from it, you really can't afford to have that attack be dodged.
Agility - Even better for Mutilate, as the increased crit chance benefits
Attack Power - Generally the same as above, except noting that since poisons scale with attack power and you will undoubtedly have invested in poison talents, its a nice increase ontop of your regular damage.
Crit Rating - More useful for Mutilate builds for
as well as
Haste Rating - More haste = more poison procs = more opportunites to crit = more energy = more Mutilates...you get the idea.
Hit rating - After you've reached the soft cap for poisons (explained above) this stat's usefullness drops off alot.
Armor Penetration - Generally the same as above, except slightly lower since your white damage is less due to wielding daggers, your damage increase is not as high (Percentage wise its the same. Raw numbers are lower.)
132 Hit Rating and Below
Between 132 and 315 Hit Rating
Between 315 and 755 Hit Rating
132 Hit Rating and Below
Between 132 and 315 Hit Rating
Between 315 and 755 Hit Rating
**NOTE: Thank you to Cally for the retardedly awesome filtered lists.
Leveling has changed a bit since the release of 3.0, and in this section I will lay out a few pointers to get to 80, where the game starts. The thing to remember is that leveling into any talent tree will ultimately get you to 80. It will get you there at different rates, and you will play a different style, but you'll get there.
Focus your itemization on Agility and Stamina at the early stages, with the inclusion of Attack Power once you hit the later levels. Be sure to do the poison quest chain as soon as possible, (
) as well as training your Lockpicking, First Aid, and Cooking as you go.
7.a Leveling Combat
Combat is still the most efficient tree to level with as it provides you with the least downtime as well as sustained DPS combined with the situational burst damage to take down several mobs at a time. Be sure to spec all the way down the Combat tree first before making your way into the other trees. Your rotation is fairly simple. Open with Garrote, cast Slice and Dice, use Sinister Strike to build combo points to five, and Eviscerate. You should be using dual Wound Poison on your weapons.
7.b Leveling Assassination
Assassination will hurt a bit at the early levels due to the positional requirement of Backstab, which is your main combo point generator until you get Mutilate. It is recommended that you wait until level 50 before playing an Assassination build, but if you are willing to stick it out from the start, be sure that your first five points go into Dual Wield Specialization before heading into the Assassination Tree. Your rotation is a bit different here. In the early levels I would recommend that you open with Cheap Shot to keep the mob locked down, immediately cast Slice and Dice, followed by a Backstab, Gouging your opponent to reposition and wait for energy rengeneration, and repeat the process to five combo points and Eviscerate.Post level 50, it is similar to Combat rotations. Garrote, Slice and Dice, Mutilate to five combo points, and Envenom. You should be using dual Wound Poison until you get 4/5 into Improved Poisons, switched then to Dual Instant Poison. After you get Mutilate, change your off hand poison to Deadly Poison.
7.c Leveling Subtlety
Definitely the least efficient route to 80, but some will argue its the most fun. As with Assassination builds, make sure you fill out Dual Wield Specialization before going into the Sub tree. Rotation is pretty much identical to Combat Builds, except you will replace Sinister Strike with Hemo once you've trained it. Also,if you've chosen to pick it up, you should add in a Ghostly Strike after you Slice and Dice. Dual Wound Poison is still your best bet here, and that won't change all the way to 80.
Here are a few pointers that should help you level your lockpicking.
are your best bet for leveling the skill since you should be pick pocketing anything that has pockets all the way to 80. I suggest this macro to make things easier:
/cast <insert opener name here>
There are also various locations around the world where you can open
. Its recommeneded for easy leveling that you get ahold of some sort of underwater breathing buff, be it from a Warlock or a potion, since the Waterlogged Footlockers are underwater--and from my experience--the only ones that you
need to take advantage of.
Finally, the doors in Scarlet Monastery and Karazhan also offer skill ups. Scarlet Monestary will be viable for you at the same range as the junkboxes that drop off the mobs inside the instance, same goes for Kara.
This is a guide to the ever-so important question of what professions to choose for end game.
This is not a leveling guide for professions.
There is a forum for that, located
. Also, the BoP benefits will not be discussed here as a whole, only in relation to the Rogue class (obviously); rather those too can be found
PvE - Great Profession, consumables can make or break your performance in a raid.
is your friend when it comes to saving money.
Endless Healing Potion
, enough said.
PvE - BoP sockets for gloves and bracers, whats not to love. Would not take over alchemy until BoP weapons are announced.
PvP - Good.. but not the best, sockets are good for the additional stats, especially with the lack of +hit on PvP gear.
PvE - Ring enchants are awesome, and being able to enchant your own gear for every upgrade you get will justify the price tag of leveling it.
PvP - same as PvE.
PvE - Goggles have been the staple of the profession. +haste to gloves is icing on the cake.
PvP - Stealth Detection on the goggles is worth every silver you spend making them. Trinkets are nice, possibly better than the JC trinkets (definitely better than whats been released so far and possibly better than the replacement for the Shadowsong Panther....oh, and grenades.
PvE - AoE heal is nice, but not great.
PvP - Better in Arenas when Macro'ed with a bandage.
PvE - Best shoulder enchants in the game, hands down. The possblty of a Scribe Only glyph spot is nice, but not implemented yet.
PvP - same as PvE.
PvE - Three ridiculous gems and free upgrades is W.I.N. Plus the "Perfect" cuts are great keepers for yourself when farming.
PvP - Same as above, hopefully the new Panther trinket wil be released in 3.1
PvE - Best leg and wrist enchants in the game, hands down.
PvP - same as PvE.
PvE - +500 health, quite useless
PvP - Slightly better, but still junk.
PvE - 25 crit rating, awesome for DPS min/maxing.
PvP - Burst seems to be key in PvP atm.
PvE _ BoP cloak enchant rocks, the rest sucks.
PvP - Same.
9. Macros & Addons
Some of these are listed above, but I thought it would be good to create a consolidated list of macros to reference in one place.
9.a Blind Mouseover
This macro will cast Blind on the target you hover your mouse over, if you aren't hovering your mouse, it will Blind your current target.
9.b Premed & Cheap Shot
/cast Cheap shot
Simply avoids clicking (or forgetting) both spells by combining them together.
9.c Ranged Attack
/cast Deadly Throw
/cast Throw; Shoot
Will cast Deadly Throw if you have the combo points, throw otherwise, or shoot if you have a bow / gun equipped.
9.d Shadow Dance Macro
#show shadow dance
/equip <dagger name here>
/cast shadow dance
Use this to swap to a new action bar page for your Shadow Dance keybinds, and equip a dagger for Ambush spam.
/equip <slow weapon here>
Put this one on the Shadow Dance bar to swap back to your other weapon for Hemo spam.
9.e Sap Macro
/console targetNearestDistance 10.000000
/console targetNearestDistance 41.000000
This will sap your target, or if you have not target, sap the closest enemy player without having to Tab to them. Very useful against other Rogues when you are both in Stealth.
9.f Preparation Macro
You are going to reset the cooldowns anyways, might as well use them. Note: will not cast Evasion if you are Stealthed, so it doesn't break.
Omen Threat Meter
- A threat meter is all but required for any raiding Rogue. I prefer this one for its simple GUI and customization options.
- All in one casting bar. Why does a Rogue need a casting bar? Well when you don't kick that heal and your target lives for another 3 minutes... you'll wish you had a giant blue bar at the top of your page to remind you.
- Little mods that make a Rogues life easier. Has a Slice and Dice timer, auto loots pickpocketing, and eliminates the spamming error messages when you're button mashing.
- Similar to quartz, but better for a PvP environment.
Scrolling Combat Text
- Vastly superior to the included combat text feature.
Big Wigs Boss Mods
- Another must have for end game PvE. Keeps track of all phases for boss encounters and other helpful tracking.
- Cooldowns, buff durations, debuffs...anything that has a time really.
- The end-all-be-all of Arena mods.
Solid points, I like :D
EDIT: Sticky-worthy, gogo!
Good job there Kick. Seeing you get it all in without someone being silly is always nice.
And liking the new icon.
Thank you very much. This was extremely helpful to me when I was redoing all of my talents after the patch.
This post was from a user who has deleted their account.
This post was from a user who has deleted their account.
reported for sticky.
every time kicklucky posts, it's a good one. this is the best one.
anyway can u explain me better the choice of weapon speed in mutilate builds? yesterday i have gone to ZA, with my 2 slow daggers, specced 51/10/0 (yeah i know no RS, ecc ecc) but anyway is was able to put out a nice dps, 35% of the total raid.
the rotation was not so painful, i need just to tune up a bit. the only difficult thing is to gather 5 combos for rupture (no RS rofl) and throw inside an envenom to refresh snd. hfb was not too difficult to keep up.
i have edge of oppression in bank, so i want to see how much the damage will go up.
you should have 2/2 opp and 3/5 relentless.
I don't think imp snd outweighs that at all, or precision.
imp snd is totally waste of tp, maybe also the glyph of snd. i have precision now.
for the speed of daggers, is it a bad idea to use 2 slow weaps and stack up haste gear for more procs?
You should never "stack" something. Use whatever increases your dps. If you're above the yellow and poison soft-cap, you don't need precision. Get RS and/or opportunity instead.
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