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Thursday, March 4, 2010

Combat and Me....I Mean You!


So over the next couple of posts I'll try to cover as much about the Combat spec as I can. In this first post I'm going to cover the optimal Combat spec(s) and glyphs.

In order to maximize your damage output you are going to want to use the common 20/51/0 talent build. Using the full 51 points in the combat tree is essential in order to take advantage of our big burst damage from Killing Spree. The only talents taken in Combat tree that can be moved around are based on our Weapon Specialization. Like any Rogue you have 3 choices, Maces, Swords/Axes & Fist/Daggers so let's go over each one and explain the pro's and con's:

1) Maces - For PvE this spec should be avoided, while the armor reduction is nice, the bonus this grants is inferior to those of the other two. There is talk of the Mace spec being buffed in the future but for now let's stay away shall we?

2) Swords & Axes - My personal favorite if for nothing more than the title "Hack and Slash." All things being equal this spec is your best choice, assuming of course, you have the weapons to pull it off.

3) Fist/Dagger - Despite not being my personal favorite, I am currently spec'd CQC based solely on the weapons available to me for the time being. Let me be very clear here...rocking this spec with TWO daggers is less than ideal...in fact its plain stupid. The damage we do in Combat relies greatly on weapon speed (slow in MH, fast in OH) and the fact is there just is not a dagger slow enough to be able to get away with one in your MH. There is a bit more to this and since it is my current spec I'll go into greater detail...*sigh*

So now you are vendoring those maces you've been running around Stormwind with and scrambling to open Atlas loot to see where your Swords, Axes, Fists and Daggers will come from...good, you're on the right track. As I mentioned earlier, you want a slow MH wep, DEFINITELY something 2.0+ so 2.5 speed will do but 2.6 is better (you get the picture). Having said that you are going to want an OH wep faster than that 2.0, preferably 1.4 but 1.5 will do (see what I did there?). If you're lucky enough to have Swords and/or Axes that meet that criteria then grats, you can stop reading this paragraph, otherwise, indulge me...CQC is only viable if you have a slow Fist in your MH for the reasons stated up there ^^^^.

This fast OH I keep speaking of has everything to do with your Poison applications....more poisons applied = more better SO the faster you attack the better, got that? Since our buff to poisons, a larger portion of our damage output is from our Instant Poison, thus the reason why we spec into Improve Poisons in the Assassination tree.

At higher gear levels we need to be careful when spec'd in CQC because of issues with Crit Capping...we have issues already w/o the +5% crit from CQC which is another reason why Hack and Slash is the ideal weapon spec, again, if you have the weapons to pull it off. It's very possible that you already have CQC AND Hack and Slash weps but just aren't sure which to choose with your current gear set up...well guess what...that's where the spreadsheet comes into play. I know a lot of people use and swear by Rawr but in my experience, the spreadsheets available here have proven to be more accurate and eventually easier to use (from a numbers standpoint at least).

OK so we got our spec and enough useful (?) advice to make an informed decision about weapons so lets move on to Glyphs. The bread and butter glyphs for Combat Rogues are Killing Spree, Sinister Strike & Eviscerate. 45 second cooldown reduction for Killing Spree? Yes please. Chance for more combo points on Sinister Strike crits? Gimme! Those 2 are must-haves here so don't go playing around with them. If you have to switch out any or want to experiment a bit with your play style, switch out Eviscerate. While this glyph does add to our dps, comparatively speaking, this is our weakest glyph of the three recommended ones.

If you've followed my advice outlined in this post then you're ready to start working on your rotation...which will be covered in my next post so make sure to check back and stay tuned!

-Untolld

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

...And Here We Go!

To all my readers out there, I apologize for the 'lag' in posts, unfortunately some RL came up and took me away from the time I had allotted for this blog. That, combined with my computer failure, did not allow me to post my long-anticipated (and promised) "How-To" for the Roguecraft Spreadsheet. I've made a couple changes since my last post and some readers will be happy to hear I've made the switch back to Combat...loving every second of it by the way.

Anyway, just wanted to give a quick update here and please keep an eye out for my next post later today!

-Untolld

Friday, January 15, 2010

Updated #2...

OK so you are all probably wondering where this infamous "spreadsheet" how-to post is and the answer is...well...half is gone. Apparently when Blizz decided to swing the dreaded 'Nerf-Bat' at Rogues, my computer took some splash damage and quit on me. Seriously...reimaged my computer thanks to some nasty trojans and the only thing I could save from the post is some of the write up, all the excel images of how to play around and add gear, etc, are gone. For some reason Dell can send me a new OS reinstall disc BUT can't send me MS office? What this means for YOU is that I can't do the excel work at home until I find the disc...the good news? Next week is not busy at all for me at work so I plan on filling in the 'missing' pieces by mid-next week and getting that up right away. I suppose the timing is for the best seeing how the spreadsheets have just been updated for the recent nerf. Stay tuned, sorry for the much longer than anticipated delay!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Update...

So my LONG overdue Rogue Spreadsheet post is going to have to wait another couple of days. My video card decided to crap out on me and now I'm giving you all this quick update on my blackberry. Have a new card coming shortly after the New Year so once I get up and running I'll post the Guide ASAP. In the meantime feel free to vote in my poll, I'm eager to see which topics you'd like me to get into over the next few weeks/months.

-Untolld

Friday, December 18, 2009

Patch 3.3 for Rogues...


I know I said my next post would be in regards to Aldriana's spreadsheets, however, I thought it best to first review the changes to Rogues in patch 3.3. For me, 3.3 was pretty substantial change, we finally saw the buff to our poisons that we've been waiting for and as a result it greatly changes our spec, glyphs & gemming (which can get pretty expensive if you can't create your own gems). If you're looking for an extensive list of the changes in 3.3, you can find it here. Now, in regards to Rogue changes here is what we're looking at:
Rogues

  • Deadly Poison: In addition to its existing effects, when a rogue applies Deadly Poison to a target which has already reached the maximum number of applications, this will also trigger the poison which the rogue is using on his or her other weapon.
  • Dual Wield: Rogues now know this ability upon logging into the game at level 1.
  • Stealth: This ability no longer has multiple ranks. While active, the single rank of this ability (available at level 1) allows rogues to move at 70% movement speed.
  • Talents

    • Assassination

      • Improved Poisons: Bonus chance to trigger Deadly Poison from this talent increased.
      • Murder: This talent now provides a flat damage increase of 2/4% against all targets, instead of only targets which do not appear in Icecrown.
    • Subtlety

      • Preparation: The cooldown on this ability has been reduced to 8 minutes, down from 10 minutes.
      • Filthy Tricks: The cooldown reduction this talent provides for Preparation has been reduced to 1.5/3 minutes, down from 2.5/5 minutes

The above change to Deadly Poison constitutes one of the bigger buffs we have seen in a long while. What this essentially means is that once you've worked up your full 5-stack of DP, rather than your OH wep refreshing the stack, it will now apply the Instant Poison that is (assuming you are applying the correct poisons to both weapons) on your MH wep. This is the most significant change because IP scales with AP so rather than gemming for Agil, we now should be switching to AP stacking. This has a direct effect on both our spec AND our rotation, rendering the 2-piece tier 9 set bonus useles...here's why...

Modeling suggests that this new spec is now superior to the old spec. The things to note between the two specs is we now drop the 2-point Blood Spatter talent in the Assassination Tree as well as dropping 3 points from Relentless Strikes and 2 points from Opportunity in the Subtlety Tree. The 5 talent points dropped are now distributed into CQC (2 more so now 5/5) and Lightning Reflexes (now 3/3). Since we are dropping Blood Spatter, we have 2 spare 'filler' points to spend as we please. I would highly recommend placing these points into Fleet Footed as the movement speed boost greatly improves your mobility and ability to avoid the dreaded fire or void zone. The other bonus to picking up Fleet Footed is since your run speed is increased 15%, you have less DPS downtime running between mobs or running to and from the boss...it's simple really...less moving & more DPS time on boss = higher damage = win. In addition to FF you may also grab the Tuskarr's Vitality boot enchant but that is an entirely different and potentially heated discussion for another time.

OK, so now you've got your updated Muti-Spec, now what? Well the next thing on your laundry list should be to hit your local Auction House for some new gems (if you don't have access to your own) and a new glyph...yes, a new glyph. Since we're dropping Blood Spatter and Rupture has become virtually useless (I'll explain when you may want to use Rupture in a bit) we are going to need to replace your Rupture glyph. Since there are no other useful glyphs for Muti single-target DPS, go ahead and pick up your Tricks of The Trade glyph which will extend the duration of your damage boost and threat misdirection by 4 seconds.

Spec? Yup. Glyphs? You bet. Rotation? Well, surprisingly enough, it has become very simple. To start the fight, Garrote, Hunger For Blood, Slice n' Dice, Mutilate to 4+ combo points, Envenom, Mutilate to 4+ combo points, Envenom. As always, make sure Hunger For Blood for Blood is ALWAYS up. If you have a feral druid or warrior, it will be easy to keep HFB going, if you do not...well this is where ol' Rupture comes into play. IF you are using the new spec, the ONLY time you should be using a Rupture is to get that pesky bleed up on the target so you can use HFB. I do not recommend using any sort of lesser-used ability such as Shiv to get the CP for Rupture, just use your Mutilate. I like to try and save as much of my energy as possible for Mutilate so if you can, try to use your bonus CP from a finisher to throw up the Rupture OR if Vanish happens to be off cooldown, vanish, garrote, HFB and start over again with your 4+ CP mutilates. Well I did it, I finally mentioned Vanish so might as well touch on this briefly...

You would be surprised how many Rogues out there do not use Vanish on a boss fight. Why WOULD you use vanish other than to escape the occasional mob? Well take a closer look at the Assassination Tree...see it yet? No? Here's a clue.... Yes sir, I'm talking about Overkill, a talent that is frequently overlooked and/or forgotten about during your OP DPS cycle. The key to using Vanish and gaining the new Overkill buff is to pool your energy a bit so as soon as you Vanish you will be able to Garrote or Ambush and immediately drop your stealth to gain the buff. The reason you want to wait until you have the necessary energy to pull this off is because if you were to Vanish with zero energy, you will be waiting too long in stealth for that yellow bar to shoot up and therefore you lose all that auto-attack and poison damage you COULD have been doing if you stayed out of Stealth for just that little bit longer.

Well I think I've gone on for long enough about all these changes to PvE Mutilate...exciting for sure, OP? No way. We're one of Blizz's "pure-damage" classes so as far as I'm concerned we're ALMOST up to where we belong...unfortunately Muti's buffs since WoTLK yanked me right away from my beloved Combat Swords (anyone else remember those honor grinds to get your PvP swords back in BC?)...oh the days when PvP gear was viable for raiding...well a little anyways :) Damn, I went off course again reminiscing...must need more coffee. Anyways, I might get around to doing a similar write up for all you Combat rogues out there so let me know what you think and if that's something you'd like to hear about. Until then I'll try finishing my guide on those damn spreadsheets...ugh.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Intro...




This is a blog about my experiences with being a level 80 (until Blizz decides to launch Cataclysm) Rogue raiding current end game content and everything in between. Rogues are arguably one of the most under-appreciated classes in the game since we offer virtually no raid-utility other than our currently OP DPS and our tank-friendly Tricks of The Trade (Savage Combat too I suppose if you're Combat spec'd...bah).

The name's Untolld, Mutilate (right now anyway) Rogue extraordinaire of Drenden. I don't pretend to be the best Rogue out there so let's get that outta the way now shall we? What I can promise is that, as much as my schedule allows, I'll be posting tips, guides and walk-through's for current raid, dungeon & PvP content. It is inevitable that some of you out there will challenge, disagree or just flat out rip some of my thoughts, theories or ideas but don't worry, I'm always open to a bit of constructive criticism because hey, that's how we all learn, right? Support is always appreciated too so play nice or face the ban-hammer! (kidding...maybe :)

I'm going to focus mainly on PvE related content as that is currently my main focus but I'll make sure to sprinkle in some PvP nuggets to appease you arena/BG junkies, although I may defer to a PvP'er more experienced than myself for topics like that so you don't have to listen to my whining about getting kited by frost mages or the occasional hunter who actually knows what they are doing...speaking of hunters, anyone else's server completely overrun with them? I digress...

Keep an eye out over the next couple of days (not sure when seeing how its my bday and festivities begin this weekend) for my first guide on how to effectively use the All-Knowing Aldriana's famous Mutilate and Combat spreadsheets.

Happy Stabbing!