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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:

  • 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'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'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.


  1. Hey there, nice article. I'm sticking with my combat swords for the most part, I do way more 5 men then raids these days and I've once again fallen off the beloved spreadsheet with some of my gear...figuring out how to add gear in openoffice, probably isn't going to happen...unless I get a guide. =P

    I had jumped over to EJ as 3.3 hit and noticed the change in poisons, for combat as well, and a spec adjustment. The increase in dps is so much so that I can actually keep up and surpass the rogues that are sporting the pre 3.3 specs & poisons. Yay for me, until they figure it out.

    -Kaawn /Zangarmarsh

  2. id love to see the same kind of post for combat as this is my preferred spec, not running many raids atm just doin the 5 mans. keep up the good work.

  3. Funny you both mentioned a Combat post, I was just taking a quick peek at its viability for me the other night when I got 2 new Hack n' Slash weps. I'm going to dig a bit further before I make any switch or make it my off spec but once I get a little better handle on the new changes from 3.3 as they pertain to Combat I'm planning on writing a post on it so stay tuned!