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  1. #1

    Heroic: Spine of Deathwing - An in-depth Rogue guide

    Hey,
    so I finally got the time (and motivation) to work on the Dragon Soul thread (will be updated soon!) again but quickly noticed that the Spine part would be rather long. Considering this is the hardest progress fight in Dragon Soul I think it wouldn't hurt to just make a new thread for this one. I hope this will help some rogues who are maybe not very used to the Sub spec and need to play it for Spine.

    Spec & Glyphs

    http://wowtal.com/#k=YqtX_AIDZ.b0w.rogue.39Wspf

    You'll notice some differences in the spec/glyphs to the standard sub specs. I'll explain all of them here.
    • 1/3 Precision & 3/3 Coup de Grace: You will be having more hit than usual in this encounter and should be above 8% with only one point in Precision. The reason for this will be explained later in the Gear part. Please note that you only should do this if you get to 8% Hit while still reforging hit away at every possible item except for expertise items. Else, just play with 2/3 Precision and 2/3 GdC. Also note this is only for H: Spine and you'll likely never spec out of 2/3 Precision for other encounters.
    • 2/2 Initiative, 1/3 Enveloping Shadows & 0/2 Serrated Blades: You won't rupture the Tendons ever with only a 19s dps duration and 100% Find Weakness uptime. 2/2 Initiative will allow for 100% 4pt Eviscerates after 1 Ambush. More about this in the Gameplay section. Enveloping Shadows will help a little with the AoE damage in this encounter and is the only real alternative left for your remaining point.

    • Glyph of Shadow Dance/Slice & Dice over Glyph of Hemorrhage: Shadow Dance is obviously a rather good choice for burst damage. Slice and Dice is actually not absolutely needed for the Tendon DPS if you always pull it off perfectly. However I'd only pick up Hemorrhage if you have noone else in the raid providing a (100% secure) bleed effect within the first global cooldowns.
    • Major Glyphs: The only neccessary one is Feint obviously while Cloak of Shadows may negate some physical damage depending on RNG. The reasoning for no Tricks Glyph is that you will use Tricks shortly prior to your actual DPS time and the 5% more damage therefore are worth more. More to that in the Gameplay section.

    Gear

    Kiroptyric Sigil - Get it and love it. Cataclysmic Gladiator's Badge of Conquest is a very decent alternative trinket if you didn't save up enough Valor Points.
    The secondary trinket should most likely be the Wrath of Unchaining and not any kind of proc trinket (unless you can garantuee a Vial of Shadows proc due to its low ICD - requires good ICD tracking though).

    For reforging there is one little change to normal sub reforges. Tendons cannot dodge so reforging off expertise should be #1 priority on those items. This tends to somewhat push your hit/mastery numbers up (which allows to drop the one point in Precision with current raid gear).

    Gameplay

    It's not as hard as one might think. This guide prioritizes Tendon DPS which you might have already figured looking at the spec. While Amalgamation DPS is important at 2 parts of the encounter you usually have enough DPS for them if you can get the Tendons down in time. You run dual Wound Poison for this very reason.

    Amalgamations:
    Pretty much normal sub rotation without rupture. Not much to say about them. DPS stops for you should be at around 1,5m of its health considering you have no dots but the T12 2pc. This depends on your guild's strategy though. You can pull off safe Shadow Dances for pretty much every Amalgamation if your guild's strategy requires 2 minutes between every burn phase. Be aware to not use other cooldowns though (trinket, racial, etc.) which you may have macro'd into your Shadow Dance.

    Tendons:
    You need to have Recuperate and Slice & Dice up before this DPS phase starts. The prefered way of doing this is:
    Have 5 combo points ready before the Amalgamation is dragged into the blood. Use Recuperate at approx. 700k health shortly before the cast is starting. Then get 5 combo points using Hemorrhage (lower energy cost + add might turn towards the raid when tank is walking away) and HaT. Use Slice & Dice in the last second of the cast (crucial to cast it BEFORE the amalgation explodes).
    Use tricks on the way towards the Tendon (will post later why you're not in the front already) and Vanish.
    Spam the following macro with no target selected. For it to work you need to slightly stand on the side of the Tendon you want to burn (e.g. the left middle area or the right middle area). Else it might try to target the Tendon which is still hidden and bug out.
    Code:
    #showtooltip Ambush
    /targetexact Burning Tendons
    /cast [target=target, exists] Premeditation
    /cast [target=target, exists] Ambush
    (source: Noxe of <Method>)
    Eviscerate obviously after that and then use Shadow Dance. 2/2 Initiative will grant you 4cps after every Ambush which is why you should do 4cp Eviscerates. But quite honestly, using 1x Ambush with 2/2 Initiative or 2x Ambush with 0/2 Initiative is such a small difference that RNG plays a much bigger factor in your DPS. There was (almost) no difference to be seen during our attempts/testing. During Shadow Dance you should use Shadowstep but with caution! You need to get out of the plate zone within 3 seconds or you will be teleported out. Simply backpedal a little to not lose any DPS during this time. After Shadow Dance you should spam Backstab and Eviscerate at 5cps again.

    So, for this to work exactly the same every time there needs to be a 2 minute time frame between every Tendon. Most guilds already delay the Tendon burns for the 2 minute mark anyway because there's a huge difference in DPS if everyone has the 2 minute cooldowns up. If your guild does not wait for the 2 minute mark (strongly advise against it), use Preparation to have Vanish ready for the 1-2, 2-2 and 3-2 tendon.
    If your guild waits for the 2 minute mark, use Preparation and Vanish/Shadowstep after Shadow Dance for the 1-2, 2-2 and 3-2 tendons to have the 10% damage buff of your Subtlety passive for another few seconds. Don't use it for the first Tendon of each plate because Vanish won't be ready for the second ones again.


    Other stuff to do besides DPS:
    • Feint pretty much on cooldown. There's a lot of blood dying during the encounter which deals AoE damage. Feint HAS to be ready though when the Amalgamation gets dragged into the blood. It also reduces Grasping Tendrils damage during Barrel Rolls.
    • Use Cloak of Shadows as soon as the Nuclear Blast cast has started. The final nuke works also with cloak miss and not only with cloak immune. This way you take less overall damage.
    • Stand with your raid during the Nuclear Blast. While you survive the big explosion due to cloak obviously, you help your raid out by standing in the Spirit Link Totem and taking no damage. There is enough time to run back after the explosion.
    • Use your healthstone! If you haven't needed it during any of the 2 last Barrel Rolls, use it at the very last Nuclear Blast while standing in the Spirit Link Totem.


    So, while tanks/healers also have hard jobs, this encounter relies on a lot of DPS for the Tendon burns. Sub Rogues are one of the 3 best classes for this job (next to legendary Arcane Mages and very geared Retribution Paladins) so make sure not to slack on this encounter because this is where you have to shine.
    Good luck!
    Last edited by Ashvael; 2012-02-14 at 03:20 PM.

  2. #2
    awesome awesome post mate!! this will help a lot increasing my dps on our next tries at heroic spine. Thanks a lot. Sticky pls

  3. #3
    Out of curiousity, is it easier to use Shiv to build CP between the Recuperate and the Slice and Dice? It requires less energy per CP, allowing you to pool energy faster and cut your Recuperate closer to the Tendon phase.


    <Static> is 6/8H on a 3 day/week schedule and is recruiting one ROGUE and one WARLOCK. Click for details!

  4. #4
    I like this thread
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  5. #5
    You cannot simplify the macro like that. Whether intended or not @ does not work with specific targets.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Mastkhare View Post
    awesome awesome post mate!! this will help a lot increasing my dps on our next tries at heroic spine. Thanks a lot. Sticky pls
    I'll link it in the Dragon Soul sticky, no need for this one to get stickied as well. If every thread like this would be, the stickies would be flooded!

    Quote Originally Posted by Armanewb View Post
    Out of curiousity, is it easier to use Shiv to build CP between the Recuperate and the Slice and Dice? It requires less energy per CP, allowing you to pool energy faster and cut your Recuperate closer to the Tendon phase.
    Well, Hemorrhage is on 29 energy vs. 34 energy for Shiv. Not a big difference but I can't see a reason why Shiv would be easier/better.

    Quote Originally Posted by Masoa View Post
    The macro could be simplified like this:

    Code:
    #showtooltip Ambush
    /cast [@Burning Tendons, exists] Premeditation
    /cast [@Burning Tendons, exists] Ambush
    I may be wrong because I'm not the biggest expert on macros but wouldn't this break the macro for "normal use"? For example, I can use the target macro as my normal Ambush for this fight and still get Ambushes off on Amalgamations without issues. If I used your macro I'm pretty sure I'd run into the same issues I already had on the encounter when I was just standing in the middle area. It would try to target the hidden Tendon and just do nothing because it can't premed/ambush/anything on it. I'm not sure if your macro works or not because of this issue, however, the macro of Noxe works perfectly fine either way so I see no need to change.

  7. #7
    Shiv is 20 energy last I checked. With three Shivs, a typical 13 energy/sec regeneration and one tick of Recup those 5 CPs are energy-neutral (you don't expend any energy to gain them over the 3s window).


    <Static> is 6/8H on a 3 day/week schedule and is recruiting one ROGUE and one WARLOCK. Click for details!

  8. #8
    Very good! I was about to draw something like this up myself as we are also progressing on Spine. I am getting very very frustrated with the teleport out of range with Shadowstep though! >.<
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  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Armanewb View Post
    Shiv is 20 energy last I checked. With three Shivs, a typical 13 energy/sec regeneration and one tick of Recup those 5 CPs are energy-neutral (you don't expend any energy to gain them over the 3s window).
    Shiv's cost goes up with slower weapons. I'm guessing you already know that, but my 1.4 speed offhand gives Shiv a cost of 34 energy.
    20 energy was the pre-Cataclysm cost IIRC.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Zik3l View Post
    Very good! I was about to draw something like this up myself as we are also progressing on Spine. I am getting very very frustrated with the teleport out of range with Shadowstep though! >.<
    Shadowstep to the Amag before it dies gaining the buff, sure you don't get find weakness on it but it's still the buff. You can cloak the nuclear blast, and depending on your guilds amag dps you can pick up 1/2 elusivness for the reduced CD on cloaking or even 2/2 if you want to be able to cloak every nuclear blast.

  11. #11
    Mechagnome Tekloth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bovan View Post
    Shiv's cost goes up with slower weapons. I'm guessing you already know that, but my 1.4 speed offhand gives Shiv a cost of 34 energy.
    20 energy was the pre-Cataclysm cost IIRC.
    The BASE cost of Shiv is 20 energy, the total amount of energy required for Shiv is determined by the speed of your offhand. A 1.4 speed weapon adds 14 energy to the base cost, a 1.5 speed weapon adds 15 energy and so forth.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Tekloth View Post
    The BASE cost of Shiv is 20 energy, the total amount of energy required for Shiv is determined by the speed of your offhand. A 1.4 speed weapon adds 14 energy to the base cost, a 1.5 speed weapon adds 15 energy and so forth.
    Clearly I don't use this ability enough. Thanks for clearing up the confusion!


    <Static> is 6/8H on a 3 day/week schedule and is recruiting one ROGUE and one WARLOCK. Click for details!

  13. #13
    I see you reccommend using the current VP trinket for burn phases and that makes complete sense to me. Is their any reason why you wouldn't use the heroic ancient petrified see as your second choice?? The heroic seed will give you 1441 Agi for 15 seconds compared to the 880 from wrath.

  14. #14
    Using one on-use trinket usually puts the other on a short cooldown as well, so you won't be able to overlap two /use trinkets. Not to mention there's no such thing as a Heroic Ancient Petrified Seed.


    <Static> is 6/8H on a 3 day/week schedule and is recruiting one ROGUE and one WARLOCK. Click for details!

  15. #15
    Anyone know of an addon that currently tracks the ICD of Vial of Shadows?

  16. #16
    ash how come u aren't wearing 4pc t13? is 2x 2pc better then the 4pc?

  17. #17
    Dreadlord
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    Quote Originally Posted by datrupimp View Post
    ash how come u aren't wearing 4pc t13? is 2x 2pc better then the 4pc?
    2p t12 and 2p t13 is better as subtlety, 2p t12 is somewhere around 5% of the total dmg from subtlety.
    And 2 sec extra on ShD isn't that good, it's 1 extra ambush per minute. (4p t13)

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Cotech View Post
    2p t12 and 2p t13 is better as subtlety, 2p t12 is somewhere around 5% of the total dmg from subtlety.
    And 2 sec extra on ShD isn't that good, it's 1 extra ambush per minute. (4p t13)
    That greatly simplifies the problem and doesn't really address it. I've been wondering myself since the relative value of T13 4pc increases as Shadow Dance (and correspondingly, Find Weakness) is up for a larger percent of the burn phase. Additionally, since the plate wipes dots, you don't realize the full value of the T12 2pc (with a 23s burn, you lose ~10-15% of the value).


    <Static> is 6/8H on a 3 day/week schedule and is recruiting one ROGUE and one WARLOCK. Click for details!

  19. #19
    Great post, I've been looking for something like this for a while.

    I really wouldn't advise on taking 1/2 Precision. Last I checked, 2% Spell Hit is still more valuable than the third point in Coup de Grace, but feel free to prove me wrong if you investigate.

    Also, I'm not sure how valuable the Shadow Dance glyph would be over Hemo. Right now, Hemo is about 400 DPS ahead of Shadow Dance (or at least it was last I checked), and there's not much in the Tendon DPS that should devalue it. If I had to guess, I'd say that fishing for a Hemo crit after your initial Vanish would be best, it should crit for at least 40k. Shadow Dance may be ahead if you plan to have Tricks up during it (which, according to the OP, you won't), but other than that, the same old issue should apply; you don't have enough energy to make effective use of that extra 2 seconds on Shadow Dance. This is all assuming you have a DPS who's first GCD is a bleed on the Tendon, of course, so Sanguinary Vein is irrelevant, though it's pretty obvious you need Hemo if you don't have a reliable bleed up as soon as the Tendon spawns.

  20. #20
    Ehh, I would drop the Hemo glyph for the shadow dance, hemo buff lasts 24 seconds, tendon phase is 18. For the 4pc vs Double 2 pc, looking through my logs the t12 2pc did around 70k-80k, so depending on how your globals line up you can get 1-2 more ambushes in, and have a 100% chance to crit on those. And I Believe OP is assuming you don't trigger the tricks before the tendon phase, thus your 2pc doesn't proc and you don't have to use the global up during the burn phase.

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