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Posts with tag maces

Enhancement shaman itemization and the end boss effect

As you may or may not be aware, I've started gearing up my enhancement shaman and have been having a really good time playing him. I enjoy enhancement for a lot of reasons, including how different it feels from playing a warrior or feral druid, the other two melee classes I'm familiar with.

However, finding weapons can be a bit of a pain. The best weapons for me outside of a raid are the two fist weapons in ZG, which drop from a randomly summoned boss. So you may not even get the boss who drops them, and the off-hand doesn't even drop from the same boss as the main-hand -- and in either case, it means I'm leveling archaeology on a fourth toon because half the time, no one can summon any of them.

As annoying as this is, for raiding, it can get even worse. Getting a 2.6 speed agility main-hand weapon from raiding means killing Nefarian and praying that this week he drops your axe. (You can get an off-hand from trash, but you can't use it in your main hand, meaning you need at least one Neffy axe). Blizzard has come out and said it's fine with this for now.

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Filed under: Shaman, Raiding, Cataclysm

Encrypted Text: Tools of the rogue's trade

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. Email Chase if you have any questions or want to submit a great screenshot.

If you've been plugged into the rogue community for any length of time, you're familiar with some of the common thoughts that we share as a class. We're all very thankful that Cloak of Shadows is now a 100% immunity to spells, that aggressive min-maxing is part of our culture, and I think I speak for everyone when I say that our most pressing concern is getting Swirly Ball back. I would mention our years of torment waiting for a functional Vanish, but it's working now, and I don't want to jinx it.

We don't always see eye to eye on every detail, though. While I imagine the rogue as a brutal killer, some prefer to think of our class as a group of honorable assassins. One of the most common ideas that I've seen but not understood is the obsession with daggers. I've heard the old standby of "a rogue not wielding a dagger isn't a rogue" a million times, but I just don't get it. Maybe it's combat talking. I even lobbied at BlizzCon for the devs to implement quick off-hand axes and swords, but the request fell on deaf ears. Like it or not, rogue weaponry has evolved.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Ask a Lore Nerd: Looking to the future


Welcome to Ask a Lore Nerd, where each week blogger and columnist Alex Ziebart answers your questions about the lore and history of the World of Warcraft. Ask your questions in the comments section below, and we'll try to answer it in a future edition.

This week I have a special request: I want any questions you might have about potential future expansions. Any questions at all are welcome, but I'm on a speculation kick recently, so next week's column will probably focus on the future and then we'lll be back to our regular deal after that. So no matter whether you think the Maelstrom could be next or something else entirely, ask!

Mark asked...


"Any chance that the Vrykul will be a playable race in a future expansion?"

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Lore, Ask a Lore Nerd

Ask a Lore Nerd: And two stealthed rogues

Real rogues use daggers
Welcome to Ask a Lore Nerd, where each week Alex Ziebart answers your quests about the lore in the World of Warcraft. If you have any questions, no matter how big or small they might be, ask them in the comments section below and we'll try to answer it in a future edition.

We'll start off with Cole's write-in question...

Why can Rogues use Maces but not Axes? What's so sneaky about hammers but not about edged blades of death?

Well, this is likely more game mechanics than anything. They need to split up which weapons can be used by what classes evenly, or you get a severe loot imbalance. If you want to justify it in-character, maces are really, really good at stopping your opponent, rendering them unable to fight back, or fight ever again. A cut leaves a scar, a shattered bone leaves a cripple.

The Mace Spec that everyone hated so much in PvP? That's pretty much how it goes with maces in real life. You thonk someone on the head, and they're out of it. I could see a Rogue playing dirty like that. Coming up from behind, cracking someone over the head, then swinging low and shattering the next guy's kneecap.

Why can't they use axes? Probably no compelling reason besides game balance, though I'm sure they would be harder to use in a Rogue-y fashion than swords, daggers or hammers. Axes are probably the most unforgiving of all of the bladed weapons. You want a hard swing, not so much an elegant stroke, a well-placed shiv, or a busted joint. Axes tend to be more about being heavy and using momentum to cut, rather than sharp edges. Not always, but that's their tendency. Maybe they weren't graceful enough to make the cut*? Who knows.

Eternauta asked...

Why did they retcon the Draenei lore from WCIII to WoW BC? What was wrong with the original lore (ugly, thin, primitive Draenei).

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Filed under: Rogue, Analysis / Opinion, Draenei, Lore, Ask a Lore Nerd

Main hands and one-hands after 2.4.2

I only slightly mentioned this back on the podcast, I think, but there was a fairly interesting change that snuck in the patch notes on 2.4.2: lots of formerly main hand weapons have become one-hand weapons. There are a couple of theories poking around about why this could be -- dual wield is first and foremost, of course, as this change allows classes who dual wield, including Rogues and Enhancement Shammies, to have a little more choice as to what weapons they can use. Death Knights will also be able to dual wield in the expansion, and this will open things up for them a bit as well. And Blacksmithing weapons were apparently changed as well (in addition to losing their "unique" status), so Blacksmithers have a little more leeway, too.

But there is one thing that, according to Blizzard, will always keep weapons in one-hand status. Caster stats, according to both Drysc and Hortus, will mean that weapons will always stay one-hand. So feel free to do as much switching around as you want in terms of speed and melee damage, but there'll be no stacking of healing or spell damage bonuses (with Shamans or Death Knights).

Which isn't really a big loss -- it means that Blizzard has much more leeway in creating healing and spell damage weapons than they do while making melee weapons. But it does mean that if you want to play around with weapon combos, you have to go melee -- healers and casters get to choose one and stick with it.

Filed under: Hunter, Rogue, Shaman, Warrior, Patches, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Talents

Encrypted Text: Building your own Rogue

[Fear my baby Rogue and her faded black sweatpants! Yeah....]Friends, countrymen (and women), lend me yer... eyes! Today I come to you with the first installment of our shiny new Rogue column, Encrypted Text. As the weeks go by, Elizabeth W. and I will share Rogue tips, tricks, gear, and more about all things stealthy and stabby. You'll get lots of Information spanning levels 1 to 70, based on questions we get, interesting forum posts, and more. (As such, if you have any questions or suggestions for Encrypted Text, you know the drill!)

Before we get rolling, allow me to steal just a moment of your time and give you a bit of information about my history (and passions) as a Rogue. My main Rogue is a L70 Troll who I have spent the last year and a half leveling and raiding under different Combat variants for the most part. I also have a L23 Blood Elf Rogue on Zangarmarsh who will be my test subject for builds once she gets to a respectable level. Currently, I am running a Swords variant on my main and do a respectable amount of damage with her. While I know many folks will immediately scream "but Swords don't fit the sneaky stabby thing, and you disable attacks that way" at me. Yes, I am aware of that. Playing up the assassin personae can definitely be a lot of fun. However, as I am primarily about PvE content, and still spend a great deal of time soloing between instances (motes - you know I love 'em) I find Combat Swords to be an excellent build for what I generally want to achieve. I do not want to mess around with having to worry about positioning or timing -- especially when in a situation where I am competing for taps. I want to walk up, pilfer through the mob's pockets, drop an opening Cheap Shot (love that noise) get my Combo Points, throw my (Improved) Slice & Dice, and proceed to Cuisinart my target into a pile of sparkly win at my feet.

If this sounds like fun to you, then keep reading. Past the jump I'll share some of what I consider to be the crucial things that anyone considering rolling a Rogue for the first time needs to know. (For those of you who are battle-proven Rogue veterans, feel free to join us and add your own observations!)

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Filed under: Rogue, Analysis / Opinion, Classes, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Rogue weapon specs: mace rogue = PvP server?

Rogue weapon specsSome flavor of combat build is generally taken to be the easiest build for leveling a rogue. But once you get to the middle of the tree, you face a decision: which weapon type to specialize in? Fist Weapons is easily eliminated, since there just aren't that many fist weapons, pre-raid. That leaves dagger, for 5% extra crit chance; sword, for a 5% chance to get an extra attack on doing damage with the sword; and mace, for +5 weapon skill and a 5% chance to stun the target for 3 seconds when doing damage with the mace.

While the swords play-style tends to revolve around Cheap Shot and Sinister Strike, dagger rogues lean more towards Ambush and Backstab. Why? Well, Sinister Strike is best with a high-average-damage (read: slow) weapon, and daggers are generally fast. And honestly, Backstab is a lot harder and more time-consuming to pull off in solo PvE than Sinister Strike. Sure, you can gouge and run through the mob, but it's so much easier to just stand there and whack it in the face with something big and sharp.

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Filed under: Rogue, Analysis / Opinion

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