Hello fellow mmo-c rogues,
I made a moderately long video guide about subtlety rogue for PvE in 6.2
I am fairly active in the rogue theory craft section here and introduced the modular structure to the custom rogue profile. Some of you might know me under my old nick, which was Nihna. So I guess this gives me some credibility :P
I was hoping to give the guide some exposure by posting it here. So let's get right into it, shall we? Below the video I will post the written version of it. Chances are high that I will continue on making videos, so any tips or potential improvement suggestions are welcomed. As this is mainly a video guide, I didn't focus too much on the written part.
Hello everybody and welcome to my Rogue Subtlety Guide intended for patch 6.2
This guide is intended to teach you the basics and advanced strategies about the spec.
Let’s start by taking a look at all our dps related skills and mechanics
60 Energy (40 during Shadow Dance) + 2CP. Stealth ability. – Ambush applies Find Weakness for 10 seconds and does high damage. Damage is being improved by the rogue class trinket. It should be used as the only CP builder during Shadow Dance. Ambush multistrikes advance our bleeds by 1 tick each due to Sinister Calling. Deals physical damage.
45 Energy + 1CP – Currently strictly worse than ambush. Never used. Applies Find Weakness.
35 Energy + 1 CP - Backstab is our main filler whenever we can’t use stealth abilities. It is strictly worse than ambush. Backstab multistrikes advance our bleeds by 1 tick each due to Sinister Calling. Deals physical damage.
30 Energy + 1 CP – Hemorrhage is currently dps neutral in comparison to backstab, which means it can be omitted from the rotation. It is however useful for target switching if rupture is not an option as the first skill used on the new target with the Glyph of Hemorrhaging Veins. Deals bleed damage.
Fan of Knives
35 Energy + (Number of Enemies hit) CP – At 3 or more enemies it should be used over backstab for max dps. At 2 Targets it can be used to speed up Vanish Cooldown recovery if needed. Damage of the ability itself is negligible, therefore it can safely be used without killing enemies. Deals physical damage.
35 Energy (10 after Relentless Strikes) – Eviscerate is a physical damage finisher that is used when neither rupture nor Slice and Dice need refreshing. It benefits from Find Weakness.
25 Energy (free after Relentless Strikes) – Rupture tends to be the finisher that requires the highest attention and maintenance of all finishers. It lasts 24s and may be refreshed at 7.2s or less without clipping. Each Ambush or Backstab multistrike will advance Rupture by 2s (Sinister Calling). Each skill may multistrike twice, therefore each Ambush or Backstab may decrease the remaining duration by 4s. You have to anticipate rupture lasting only a very short time, try to never let it drop. When 7.2s remaining duration are almost reached and you have room for more Combo Points use some more builders without capping to advance the bleed to 7.2s or less. Deals bleed damage.
Slice and Dice
25 Energy (free after Relentless Strikes) – Slice and Dice is a simple maintenance buff that increases our attack speed by 40% or more depending on mastery. It lasts 36s and may be refreshed at 10.8s or less. Rupture almost always takes priority over Slice and Dice because of its advancing behavior (Sinister Calling).
35 Energy (10 after Relentless strikes) – Crimson Tempest is our AoE bleed damage finisher, however it does not interact with T18 and is therefore omitted.
1m CD. Enables the usage of stealth abilities and reduces the cost of Ambush by 20. This ability should be used on cooldown, you must adjust all your other abilities and energy around it. Be already at around 100 energy when it comes off cooldown. At the last second of Shadow Dance you should use an ambush if you can, so you refresh your Find Weakness debuff one last time to 10s.
2m CD. Copies your active skills during the next 8s and then mimics them on its target. Best used with Shadow Dance.
20s CD. Adds 2 Combo Points. Stealth ability. Should be used with every Shadow dance and Vanish. The Combo Points gained don’t convert to Anticipation stacks.
1m 30s CD, every Eviscerate and Rupture decrease the cooldown by 1s per Combo Point. Puts you in stealth, With T18 you gain 5 Combo Points after using Vanish and a 30% damage increase for 10s. Activating stealth also buffs you with Master of Subtlety which is another 15% damage increase. When combined with Subterfuge and Glyph of Vanish you get a 6s window to use stealth abilities.
5m CD. Instantly resets the Vanish cooldown. Should be used early so you can get a 2nd usage on some fights.
Your attacks ignore 100% enemy armor. That is a roughly 50% damage increase to all your physical attacks against the afflicted target.
Increases Rupture Damage by 30% and you deal 25% more damage against targets afflicted by any of your bleeds. Rupture, Crimson Tempest, Garrote or glyphed hemorrhage count.
Honor among Thieves
Whenever somebody in the raid crits you gain 1 Combo Point, this has a 2s cooldown. Basically every 2s you gain 1 Combo Point.
Whenever you multistrike with either Backstab or Ambush, you advance your bleeds by 1 tick. Each ability may multistrike twice.
Random Fight sequence and comments on that
Next up is me showcasing you the subtlety rotation on the training dummy. Note that I am alone in the group and therefore don’t generate an Honor among Thieves proc every 2 seconds. This means I have less combo points to spend, also waiting on the 5th Combo Point via Honor among Thieves is also not always working.
For this demonstration I used a 20s pulltimer, however the optimal minimum required pulltimer for subtlety rogues is in my opinion 12 seconds. We will watch the opener in slow motion, the rest will be in real time.
I use Premeditation at 12s left on the timer and will use Slice and Dice at 2s before the fight, just as the Premeditation cooldown almost hits 10s left. If we go over 10s, we will lose one combo point to out of combat decay.
At 1s on the pull timer we press the opener macro for the first time, which consists of pre pot and Vanish. Then at exactly 0 on the timer we press it again, which will then use Shadow Reflection and Rupture.
At 1s into the fight we use Shadow Dance, the legendary ring and Ambush.
From that point on we follow the priority, which is use Ambush as a combo point generator and use Finishers at 5 or more combo points. Do a last Ambush when Shadow Dance ends. Use Preparation without energy capping. Premeditation will be ready at the end of the first Shadow Dance.
Note how I try to avoid using Eviscerate before the second Vanish, as that would waste 5s of the Vanish cooldown recovery of the Tier18 four piece bonus and wait for Slice and Dice to drop to less than 12 seconds instead.
On the pull we already use our 2nd Vanish. When we use it we try to fit an Eviscerate and an Ambush into the legendary ring. During this Vanish we only expect 2 Ambush usages, therefore the 2nd Ambush should be at the end of our 2nd Subterfuge so we get more Find Weakness uptime.
When Find Weakness ends we enter an energy saving mode, we try not to spend energy or Combo Points without having procs or cooldowns up and stay at around 90 energy and 9 Combo Points. We still want to keep our maintenance spells up though.
Since this is the more relaxed part of the rotation we can talk about Vanish usage at this point: You use one pre pull and the 2nd Vanish at roughly 11s into the fight. The next Vanish will line up for the next Shadow Dance. In general you want to use Vanish on cooldown, but you can delay it for up to 6 seconds for only Shadow Dance and up to 12 seconds for Shadow Dance plus legendary ring, assuming you don’t lose a Vanish usage during the fight.
As we approach the second Shadow Dance we have to make sure, to be at as much energy as possible without capping. Also take a look at the Vanish cooldown, it’s almost up which means we have to use it during the Shadow Dance. Note how I wait for the last second to run out without using any ability, this is in order to let as many abilities as possible benefit from the 2 piece 30% damage bonus as possible, also I need to have room for 5 extra combo points.
Do one last Ambush at the end of the Shadow Dance.
We are back to energy saving.
The next Cooldown Interval will be important. As I use the legendary ring I am allowed to hold Vanish for up to 12s IF I don’t waste a Vanish usage. In this video I held Vanish for 7s.
Right before the 3rd Shadow Dance I was at 10 combo points with high energy, I believe in retrospective it would have been most optimal to do Slice and Dice, then Vanish and Shadow Reflection into Rupture and then Shadow Dance plus Ambush. In the video I did Rupture first and then Vanish, which means I lost out on 5s of recovery. A small loss, but still.
During this set of cooldowns I had a favorable Soul Capacitor proc, however, sometimes your proc lasts a little bit longer than the ring duration, in which case you must cancel the buff right before the ring procs, the breakpoint for this varies by gear, but you can use 4 seconds or less as a guideline.
The next Vanish will be desynced from Shadow Dance, or I would have to sit on it for too long otherwise.
The rest of the showcase follows the same rules I explained earlier and won’t have further commentary. I still felt the need to let it in the video though to show Vanish usage.
This concludes the show fight against the target dummy, next up are Tips & Tricks, Common mistakes and Gearing.
Tips & Tricks
With Anticipation you can go safely to 9 Combo Points, if you pay attention to Honor among Thieves even 10 Combo Points. Try to maximize energy spent during Shadow Dance and Vanish on Ambush, but don’t overflow on combo points.
Try to end your Shadow Dance or Vanish on a last Ambush for maximum Find Weakness uptime, but avoid wasting Combo Points by overflowing. It’s most of the time better to not overflow on Combo Points.
Keep your energy level high at around 80% when you can’t use Ambush and don’t have any major proc up. Save energy regardless of procs for major cooldowns. This way you make sure that you spend more energy on Ambush instead of other spells.
It is optimal to go into a Shadow Dance with 7 Combo Points or if you watch your Honor among Thieves closely, with 8 Combo Points and open with an Ambush, that way you are at 10 Combo Points with Find Weakness. This way you moved 1 finisher into your Find Weakness window.
Your frequently used keybinds should be easy to press. This might seem obvious, but people often add newly learned spells wherever they have space left on their action bars. Use a spreadsheet to reorganize your keybinds.
Use pure Ambush macros for your stealth and non stealthbar. This way you avoid client lag and don’t accidentally use Backstab during Shadow Dance. Such macros can be found on my google docs document linked in the description.
Sometimes you can wait for Honor among Thieves procs instead of doing Backstabs for 5 Combo Points in order to not let your Rupture drop prematurely. However, never let your energy cap regardless. Either spend 1s without Rupture or do a glyphed hemorrhage.
Rupture uptime being too low. Rupture is your 2nd most important maintenance spell to keep up and certainly the hardest to maintain. Watch it carefully because of Sinister Calling, already prepare for having to refresh it at 14s or less, but only use it at 7.2s or less. If you have room for more Combo Points, use it. Use rupture over Slice and Dice most of the time, only use Slice and Dice over Rupture when Slice and Dice is 2s or less. Substitute your Rupture with glyphed hemorrhage if you can in that situation.
Low Uptime on Slice and Dice. Slice and Dice is your most important finisher, but it’s also the easiest one to keep up since you can refresh at <10.8s. Make sure to never let it drop.
Using finishers with less than 5 Combo Points. For each combo point spent on a finisher, you have a 20% chance to get 25 Energy refunded, adding to 100% at 5 combo points. This mechanic is called Relentless Strikes. You don’t want to lose out on this energy.
This one isn't in the video guide. Don't bind your Premeditation to Ambush and expect to never lose combo points.
There are Best in Slot lists and they are useful to a certain extent, but you shouldn’t pass up upgrades along the way to Best in Slot. A warforged item might be better than a regular BiS item. How do you find out? For a highly accurate result you can check out shadowcraft and use it for comparison, or for quick and pretty accurate estimates you can use the ingame addon pawn with customized stat values.
My Pawn values can also be found in the google docs linked in the description.
In order to import them, copy them first, then open pawn ingame, go to scale, and then use import.
A question I get often is: What weapon goes in which hand? The answer is: Use your highest ilvl Dagger in your main hand, and your remaining highest ilvl weapon of any kind in your off hand. If your remaining weapons have equal ilvl go for a dagger in your off hand.
For Trinket Comparison there is a simcraft results thread on mmo-champion which I will also link in the description.
Next let’s look at glyphs and Talents.
Glyph of Energy – this glyph is a dps increase.
Glyph of Vanish - this glyph is a dps increase when combined with subterfuge.
Glyph of Hemorrhaging Veins – This glyph makes target switching easier, but is no dps increase.
Glyph of Feint – increases Feint duration by 2s. Can save energy if you need to Feint anyway.
T15 – Subterfuge > Shadow Focus
T90 – Anticipation -> Marked for Death
T100 – Shadow Reflection(Note that I color this as a cooldown everywhere else.) -> Death from Above -> Venom Rush
This concludes my 6.2 sub PvE guide, leave comments and suggestions below, and if you found this guide helpful leave a thumbs up. You can also visit me on my twitch channel and ask me questions or just hang out. It’s twitch.com/rylix_TV
Thank you for watching.
Join my stream on twitch, on the channel page you can find lots of useful rogue information, addon links and my PoV on different encounters. I will be answering your questions on chat or in general talk to you guys and gals ! http://www.twitch.tv/rylix_tv
Macros, Weak Aura Strings and stat values can be found here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets...oPItF7thIuNbb0
Rogue gearing spreadsheet tool: http://shadowcraft.mmo-mumble.com/
Rogue Simcraft thread with BiS lists and custom profiles: http://www.mmo-champion.com/threads/...esults-for-WoD
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