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Posts with tag combat-readiness

Encrypted Text: Rogues can actually tank

tank rogue
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any questions or article suggestions you'd like to see covered here.

In the original WoW beta, rogues were designed to be off tanks. Complete with a high dodge coefficient from agility and a buckler, rogues could survive quite a beating. Evasion was a tanking cooldown, and Vanish was a useful tank-swapping ability. Hunters worked similarly, also sporting bucklers and using Feign Death to lose aggro. Obviously, the developers scrapped both of these ideas before launch.

During The Burning Crusade, Gaeowyn broke the combat table by achieving unhittable status with 102.63% avoidance and using it to successfully slay Illidan. After that, the crew slew Gruul with just five people while it was still relevant content. In Wrath, Jider abused Shadowstep and our amazing damage output to solo several Naxxramas bosses. The upcoming Mists expansion looks to again revitalize rogue tanking, with the advent of the druid ability Symbiosis and our bonus ability, Growl.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Reflecting on our Cataclysm abilities

combat readiness
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any questions or article suggestions you'd like to see covered here.

I love October. While any baseball fan will tell you that there's a special feeling in the air during October, I couldn't care less about the World Series. I know plenty of football fans who enjoy spending their Octobers obsessing over their fantasy rosters, but my team has cruised to a 5-and-0 start already. I'm not even particularly excited that my birthday falls in October, as another event takes priority. October is BlizzCon month for me, and I can't wait to hear all about what's in store for rogues as we learn about next year's expansion.

When thinking about what cool abilities rogues might see in the next WoW expansion, I started reflecting on the new spells we received in Cataclysm. For our new high-level spells, we picked up Combat Readiness, Redirect, and Smoke Bomb. Recuperate was added to our low-level spells to help make leveling smoother and to provide rogues with a healing option that didn't involve bandages. How useful have these spells proven themselves to be over the past year?

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: A rogue's guide to patch 4.2

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any questions or article topics you'd like to see covered!

Rogues have a lot to look forward to when patch 4.2 is released. If you spend most of your time in dungeons or raiding, you'll be happy to hear about the sizable buffs to all three of our talent trees. Unfortunately for rogues that favor PVP, there are some cooldown changes to Cloak of Shadows and Combat Readiness that won't be well-received. While I'm not completely satisfied with the size of our buff when compared to our relative position in the DPS pack, our potency in Firelands still remains to be seen.

In addition to the slew of balance changes, we can start salivating over the new gear that will be available. Our tier 12 set has some very fun bonuses, and also some great crafted gear coming up. Our caster rivals will get access to their first legendary weapon since Atiesh, so we'll have to do our best to keep up. The duration of Blind in PVE is going up to a full minute, giving us two forms of long-term CC in Sap and Blind. As proof that rogues are designed to be the best at what they do, most other CC effects in the game are going to start mirroring Sap. Polymorph and the rest won't aggro mobs that they're used on, which should make it far easier to coordinate CC in a PUG. Plus, even if the group manages to somehow mess up CC and starts combat early, we can just use Blind as a stand-in for Sap anyway.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Maximize your rogue's cooldowns

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to suggest a topic you'd like to see covered!

Rogues are the cooldown class. You've heard it before. For the entire lifetime of World of Warcraft, rogues have been defined by their cooldowns. Vanish and Blind were the key ingredients to the infamous Roguecraft videos, while Shadowstep and Adrenaline Rush defined an entire expansion's worth of arena matches. Preparation, the cooldown-eliminating cooldown, has been considered to be the most powerful ability in a rogue's arsenal.

Aside from the low-level ability Recuperate, all three of our new Cataclysm abilities are cooldowns. We have a plethora of both defensive and offensive cooldowns, and knowing when to use them becomes key in defining the difference between a good rogue and a great one. While it may seem simple to pop CDs as soon as they're ready to be used again, defensive cooldowns are much more complex. Offensive CDs can be coordinated with external effects to increase their potency significantly. Many cooldowns ride the line between the offensive and defensive categories, as they're viable for each purpose.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Fresh patch 4.0.6 PTR notes for rogues

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any rogue questions you may have.

Have you ever read Blizzard's patch notes and wondered exactly where the developers are going with certain changes? We're all familiar with the fact that subtlety has been lagging behind the other rogue specs in DPS. It's actually still seeing some use in top guilds on healing-intensive encounters, due to Enveloping Shadows giving us nearly permanent Feint on top of 30% AoE damage reduction. The fact remains that subtlety has largely been a PvP spec outside of very specific situations, although it's a quite potent PvP spec. The patch notes show us that the developers obviously want for subtlety to be more competitive in PvE -- no surprise here.

What I don't understand is the new Blade Flurry mechanic. On the PTR, Blade Flurry no longer has a fixed duration, meaning that you can have it up 100% of the time. While yeah, it sounds awesome, it also opens up huge balancing issues. It means that any time there's a raid encounter with more than one target, we're stuck swapping to combat. There are plenty of other classes with similar Cleaving abilities, but none as powerful as Blade Flurry. While I'm all for spec diversity, I'd rather not waste development time on something that's certain to be cut once it makes it to live.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Cataclysm heroics from a rogue's perspective

Every Wednesday, Chase Christian of Encrypted Text invites you to enter the world of shadows, as we explore the secrets and mechanics of the rogue class. This week, we discuss the new heroic dungeons in the upcoming expansion.

I remember what it was like to play a rogue in dungeons in vanilla WoW. Our only form of long-term crowd control was Sap, and it brought us out of stealth every time we used it. Subtlety rogues could spend three talent points on Improved Sap, which still left Sap knocking us out of Stealth a tenth of the time. Every mob had some sort of AoE or whirlwind-style attack, and rogues were often right behind tanks in terms of healing necessary.

We've come a long way since the old days. Tricks of the Trade, with its instant threat transfer, has become the crutch that supports even the greenest tanks. Fan of Knives is one of the best AoE abilities in the game and synergizes with our poisons for incredible potency. Improved Sap has been baked in to the ability, and we can use our CC safely on a wide variety of targets. Feint's new ability to reduce our AoE damage taken also allows us to survive most attacks. You might say that rogues are nearly perfect for running heroics. Unfortunately for us, Cataclysm's heroics have a thing or two to teach us about complacency.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Top new, useful Cataclysm rogue abilities


Every Wednesday, Chase Christian of Encrypted Text invites you to enter the world of shadows, as we explore the secrets and mechanics of the rogue class. This week, we discuss the new abilities that we'll see as we level up in the upcoming expansion.

As I've mentioned several times before, rogues are often thought of as the "cooldown class." We've got a plethora of abilities, with nearly one (or two) for every situation. We're then regulated via cooldowns attached to each abilities, limiting how often we can use them. This gives the rogue class incredible potency in short fights, when our cooldowns are able to be used in quick succession. However, we have often stumbled in longer encounters, when our cooldowns are only active for a small percentage of the overall fight. Blizzard has been working on resolving this by reducing both the potency and the cooldown of a few of our moves, like Sprint, to give us more flexibility.

The DPS model for rogues hasn't change at all since The Burning Crusade. The only real addition was the creation of Mutilate and Envenom, which have been staples for rogues for years now. While Fan of Knives was a fun addition at level 80, its use on anything but trash has been limited at best. It's unsurprising that even though we're receiving three new abilities in Cataclysm versus BC's two, they're still all cooldown abilities. However, our new spells are actually incredibly fun and useful. They also take some skill to use properly, which is something that the rogue class needs desperately to get back to. Using your abilities wisely should yield a large reward -- and with that thought, I will now introduce the 2010 graduates of the Rogue Ability Academy.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: What the Cataclysm preview was missing


Every Wednesday, Chase Christian of Encrypted Text invites you to enter the world of shadows, as we explore the secrets and mechanics of the rogue class. This week, we talk about a few questions we still have following our class preview. Rossi also sent me the above picture of his rogue, and I have to say that I was not surprised in his choice of character customization.

If you haven't had a chance to yet, you should take a peek at the Cataclysm preview for rogues that was released last week. We've learned about several new moves being added to our arsenal as we level to 85, in addition to being privy to developers' plans for the class as we fight against Deathwing and company. Cataclysm looks to be the most ambitious expansion to date, and Blizzard is pulling out all the stops to ensure that many of the issues the game has faced since launch are handled while also developing each class to a more robust level of play.

There was a lot of great info in the preview, but there were also a few details missing. Does Blizzard have any plans to replace Vanish, is there any chance of a new combo system ability (generator or finisher), and what about ever having Shadowstep become trainable? These are just a few of the questions I've been considering, and I've heard many more from other rogues as well. What's your biggest questions for the developers after having read their plan for the rogue class?

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Cataclysm Class Changes: Rogue analysis

I'm sure you've been following along with the recent pre-Cataclysm class information posts that Blizzard has been releasing to the public. I will admit that I was a bit blindsided by the info, as Blizzard is usually reluctant to give any details of their upcoming plans and generally prefers to use vagaries. But not this time! We actually have some serious, meaty details of what the devs have planned for the rogue class, and let me be the first to say, I like what I'm seeing. A lot. Let me introduce you to my new best friend: Improved Distract. Wait, I mean Critical Vanish. Wait, I mean Smoke Bomb.

Smoke Bomb (level 85): The rogue drops a Smoke Bomb, creating a cloud that interferes with enemy targeting. Enemies who are outside the cloud will find themselves unable to target units inside the cloud with single-target abilities. Enemies can move inside the cloud to attack, or they can use area-of-effect (AoE) abilities at any time to attack opponents in a cloud. In PvP, this will open up new dimensions of tactical positional gameplay, as the ability offers a variety of offensive and defensive uses. In PvE, Smoke Cloud can serve to shield your group from hostile ranged attacks, while also drawing enemies closer without the need to rely on conventional line-of-sight obstructions. Smoke Cloud lasts 10 seconds and has a 3-minute cooldown.


The goblins haven't even joined the Horde yet, and already we're seeing the fruits of their labors. Instead of the trashy Flash Powder we used back in vanilla, we rogues of tomorrow have evolved to use the most powerful smoke generators available on Azeroth, courtesy of our engineering buddies. Who needs to Vanish when you can literally become untargetable? This is what we've been waiting for: now when Vanish is down, we won't have the "deer in the headlights" look on our face when the mage begins their Shatter combo. We'll disappear.

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Filed under: Rogue, Cataclysm

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