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Posts with tag shadow-dance

Encrypted Text: Five macros every rogue should know

macros
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.

Macros are designed to allow a player to combine commands and modifiers (targeting, non-GCD abilities) with regular abilities in a quick and efficient manner. Macros can't make decisions for you. There is no macro that will automatically switch between Mutilate and Dispatch for you on the fly. There is no macro that will use Revealing Strike when it fades and Sinister Strike otherwise. Macros aren't intelligent – they have to be told what to do.

Pure classes tend to have fewer abilities than hybrids, and after the merging of spells like Envenom and Eviscerate, our action bars are sparse. The average raiding rogue might only need a dozen or so abilities per encounter, and that's including defensive cooldowns. A typical assassination rotation consists of Mutilate or Dispatch, Rupture and Envenom, and a few Feints or Cloaks per fight. Rogue macros tend to focus less on day-to-day rotation assistance and more on strategic abilities and cooldowns.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Why mobility doesn't matter

sprint
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.

Brian Holinka, who is quickly becoming the most frequent tweeter on the dev team, recently talked about Shadowstep and rogue mobility in a series of tweets. Mobility is one of those things that gets trotted out every time a melee class starts talking about PvP balance. One melee class has a teleport, another has a snare break, yet another has a speed boost –- no two melee classes are equal. I'm sure we all remember ret paladins complaining about their lack of a "gap closer." The problem with mobility is that mobility doesn't matter. Well, not really.

What really matters to a melee class is uptime. Our goal isn't to have 100% mobility, it's to have 100% uptime. We want to be attacking our target as often as possible, and that usually requires being in melee range. Looking at mobility in a vacuum is missing the forest for the trees. Mobility is just one of the tools that we use to achieve a high melee uptime. All of our other abilities, like CCs, stuns, and slows are critical components to maximizing our uptime. Shuriken Toss is the exact opposite of mobility, but its strength comes from increasing our uptime despite being out of melee range.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Rogue basics in patch 5.2

argent
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.

With one glance at the notes, you'll see that rogues are obviously the class getting the most updates in the upcoming patch. There's an unusual number of changes coming our way. I'm used to a few terse sentences under the brittle yellow Rogue heading in the patch notes. Currently, we're facing paragraphs of tweaks, a handful of completely new abilities, and even redesigns of old techniques.

None of the changes should affect our core DPS mechanics. Our rotations are going to stay exactly the same, our weapon and poison changes won't be changing, and we'll want the same stats on our gear. Combat and subtlety rogues were both slightly buffed, but all three specs should be competitive in PvE. Many of the changes should significantly increase our stock in PvP, via both offensive and defensive improvements.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: The subtlety experiment

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, or hate mail if you play subtlety.

Over the past few years, I've been accused of playing favorites with the rogue specs. During Wrath, I was characterized more than once as the ArP-mongering combat rogue who neglected Mutilate builds. In Cataclysm, I'm supposedly the devoted assassin who never gives combat or subtlety a fair shake. The truth is that I don't care what spec I'm playing, and I'll play whatever gives me the best results.

I played Mut/Prep, HARP, and even pure subtlety in the arena during The Burning Crusade. I've raided extensively as both combat and assassination, and I've leveled my rogues (plural) with each of the three specs, as well. I frequently swap specs. I love combat for solo PVE play, while subtlety holds a special place in my heart for ganking and world PVP. I currently raid as assassination simply because it's how I get the best results. I'm not alone in this philosophy, as most rogues will do whatever it takes, including a respec, to get the most out of their characters.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Breaking subtlety's cipher

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. If you're looking for information on patch 4.1's rogue changes, take a look at my previous writeup.

I spent the majority of my time during The Burning Crusade as a subtlety rogue. Hemorrhage provided me with the damage I needed to crush anyone wearing cloth. Shadowstep allowed me to keep up with even the most slippery druids. The shadows were my ally, and I Cheated Death more than once. The Mutilate build that rules today's raids was still in its infancy, while combat was the only viable raiding spec. Even then, subtlety couldn't hope to compete, and our only purpose was to slaughter the opposing faction with stealth and grace.

On the timeline of WoW, subtlety did enjoy one blip in the PvE spotlight. During the early months of Wrath, a bug with Honor Among Thieves made subtlety rogues the best DPS class in the game, at least when stacked in a raid environment. Once the loophole was closed, the spec was relegated back to its PvP-only jail cell. Cataclysm was heralded as the new age of True Balance, with every spec getting a slice of the DPS pie. Unsurprisingly, the rogue utility spec of subtlety is still falling behind (along with frost mages, our old rivals for the bottom spot). The meters can be deceiving though, as subtlety is nowhere near as limp and lifeless in a raid as it once was. There's talk of high-end rogues even choosing to play subtlety. The whispers of the dead spec's long-waited return have been spreading through the shadows of the rogue community like a bad rumor.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Answers to your pre-Cataclysm rogue questions


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, like how to get yourself out of a straightjacket with only your mace.

With just one month remaining until Cataclysm's release, everyone is getting ready for WoW's latest installment. I have been working on refining my leveling builds for my characters, preparing heirloom gear for my upcoming goblin shaman, and solidifying my guild's roster for January's inaugural raids. Cataclysm will be the biggest expansion yet, and there is no lack of work to be done.

Many of you are doing likewise, adapting to the changes introduced in patch 4.0.1 and planning for the future. I have been receiving a ton of great questions via email about best practices moving forward. While some things are still up in the air (like combat's viability), most of the changes are settling down, and we can really start to make plans knowing that it's unlikely we'll see any new major changes.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Patch 3.3.3 changes mean subtlety is back

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 upcoming patch 3.3.e changes, and what they mean for subtlety.

I promised myself I would never say this. When I took up the mantle of Encrypted Text, I knew that with great power comes great responsibility. It was my duty to ensure that accurate information reached the readers of this column, and to keep them abreast of upcoming changes. The other sites could do as they pleased: I would remain steadfast.

Unfortunately, as we all know, Blizzard loves to shake things up when they feel that the status quo is stale. The recent subtlety changes are an example of this. Because of those changes, I have to break that promise that I made. Today, I am forced to say something which I never thought would be seriously true. Today, I am telling you that hemo daggers is a viable spec.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Why I never understood Shadow Dance PvP

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 look at why Shadow Dance PvP is nearly extinct, and why it's coming back.

The ESL global arena finals took place last weekend, pitting some of the best WoW players against each other in a battle for glory (and quite a bit of cash and prizes). After two days of close calls and amazing comebacks, the global roster of teams was reduced to two: team HON and team COM. Both of these teams play the traditional Rogue / Mage / Priest 3v3 composition, with one twist: nobody played with the same talents two games in a row.

The Mages fluctuated between Frost and Arcane specs every other game, making it difficult to predict just how much survivability or burst damage they were capable of until they showed their hand. The Rogues were also switching specs between games, from Mutilate to Shadow Dance, and back. This strategy was used to keep the enemy on their toes, and gave me the opportunity to watch Shadow Dance played at its absolute highest level. My report on this display of elegance and Ambush-spamming follows after the cut.

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Filed under: Rogue, PvP, Talents, (Rogue) Encrypted Text, Arena

Encrypted Text: Rogue videos from Patch 3.1 PTR

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 look at some of the new animations coming in patch 3.1.

Since the departure of BigRedKitty from our site, we haven't had many new videos for you to watch while idling at work. I decided to step up to fill this gap in programming by FRAPS'ing some of my adventures on the patch 3.1 PTR. With several changes to Rogues in this latest content release, I wanted to stay ahead of the curve by testing the modifications out before they are deployed to live servers.

There were reports of new animations for several spells, as well as moves that had been changed mechanically. Catching any bugs that had slipped through QA was also a top priority. I copied my Rogue over to the PvP PTR realm and started shooting, and the results of that labor follow after the cut. A few caveats: all videos were shot without UI addons or keybindings, and so I do click quite a few of my abilities. I tried out five specs in about 30 minutes, and so my action bars are also disheveled. That said, let's review the videos.

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Filed under: Rogue, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Bugs, Odds and ends, Features, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encryped Text: One Rogue's take on Season 5

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 Arena Season 5.

Like many of my siblings of the shadows, I play WoW in both the PvP and PvE environments. As a guild leader, it is my responsibility to organize raid groups and to lead my team to victory (and the associated purple loot). While keeping up Hunger for Blood & Slice and Dice & Rupture up may seem interesting for others; after a while the raid DPS grind wears away at my soul. I was not born to be a number-crunching math machine. I am a Horde assassin at heart: born to taste the blood of my Warchief's enemies!

I have been flexing my PvP muscles in the new Lake Wintergrasp and Strand of the Ancients battlegrounds, though I find myself sitting in a turret or catapult fairly often. The arena has always been my true love. It was what brought me back to WoW for TBC, and it is what tempted me to level in Northrend for the next installment. With Season 5 now officially underway, my week has consisted of the most bloodthirsty battles I have ever been a part of. So go buy your Hateful Gladiator's Band of Triumph (best initial upgrade with no rating requirement) and read on!

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Filed under: Rogue, PvP, (Rogue) Encrypted Text, Wrath of the Lich King, Battlegrounds, Arena

Rogue changes in patch 3.0.3


Although not a ton happened to Rogues in this latest patch, we at WoW Insider like to keep our coverage well-rounded, so let's run down the Rogue patch notes.
  • Combat Potency now only works on auto-attacks (i.e. not Shiv). I think we can agree that all the shivving was getting pretty silly.
  • Fan of Knives is castable if you don't have a target, looks prettier, and no longer plays an impact on the caster. It also benefits from Find Weakness, and its cooldown was reduced to 10 sec.
  • Instead of making the rogue untargetable, Killing Spree now causes all players to lose targeting on the rogue and causes the rogue to be unstoppable during its duration.
  • Riposte's effect duration is no longer reduced by effects that reduce disarm duration.
  • Shadow Dance no longer increases the cooldown on various abilities that require stealth (Sap, Garrote, Ambush, Cheap Shot, Premeditation, Pick Pocket, and Disarm Trap). Feel free to Ambush as much as you have energy for, but don't get too attached to cooldown-free swirly ball Disarm Trap; that's getting nerfed for sure.
Overall, it's buff time in Rogueville, as it seems to be for nearly everyone else. The Combat Potency change is essentially a bug fix. FoK's cooldown was cut by two thirds, and you can't argue with a prettier effect. I'm not really sure what to think about Killing Spree's change. I guess it means you can still take damage, if the opponent can manage to target you, but I don't see it as a big deal. And I hear many players are still not particularly impressed with Shadow Dance, but I would expect Ambush's numbers to add up pretty quickly. Have any beta players played with this new version?

Update: missed one: Glyph of Shiv replaced with Glyph of Vigor, which gives 10 more extra energy if you have Vigor.

Filed under: Rogue, Patches

Encrypted Text: Trunks of the Trees, Subtlety

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 finish a discussion of 51 point talents. We'll be covering Shadow Dance, the final talent in Subtlety.

With the nefarious Patch Tuesday behind us, we now have available to us a plethora of new talents. Other classes received their 51 point talent trees as well, and balance is but a faint whisper of what it once was. I killed a Warrior earlier tonight in a full stunlock, and I saw a Retribution Paladin throw a Holy Light for over 7,000.

What sets Rogues apart is the true uniqueness of the new abilities. They are very different from anything we have ever seen before, and this can cause confusion and makes them harder to evaluate in terms of usefulness. I have been able to test Shadow Dance first hand, find my full report after the cut.

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Filed under: Rogue, Patches, Tips, Talents, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Dough for your cookie cutters

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. In this special 3.0.2 edition of Encrypted Text, we'll be talking about the new talent trees that are coming this Tuesday with the release of the patch.

With 3.0.2 right around the corner, all three of our precious talent trees are about to get shaken up. Talents are getting moved around, point costs are travelling in both directions, and a lot of rebalancing is taking place. Blizzard has been removing bloat from certain areas, and also adding some very cool new abilities for our class.

With all these changes, it can be hard to see the forest for the trees. (Get it? Talent trees? Haha!) For a detailed analysis of all the changes, I recommend reading the patch notes. I am going to give my readers (you) exactly what a busy Rogue wants: what's nerfed, what's buffed, what's good when the dust settles?

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Filed under: Rogue, Patches, PvP, Raiding, Talents, Buffs, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Trunks of the Trees, Assassination and Combat

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 explore two of the new 51 point talents coming soon.

If you ask 75% of the top Rogues worldwide what the premier PvP spec is, they'll tell you Subtlety. If you ask an even greater margin of raiders what Rogue spec pumps out the most DPS, you'll get a solid shout of "Combat, duh!" And if you should ever feel the urge to pick up a pair of daggers, every brother of the shadows will direct you towards Assassination. These three trees have been neatly defined by Blizzard, and it's fairly obvious what each is designed for.

What separates Rogues from every other class is our nearly unilateral use of 41 point talents. A dagger Rogue without Mutilate is gimped while a Sub PvP Rogue without Shadowstep is the laughing stock of the arena. And don't bother stepping into Sunwell without Surprise Attacks, unless getting trashed on the damage meters is your idea of fun. We've gotten so used to the comfort in knowing that dumping 41 points into any of our trees will yield a viable build. Now that 51 pointers are on the way in 3.0.2 and Wrath to follow, I've been asked by many Rogues "Will the bottom of our trees continue to be the anchors of our builds?" Find out after the cut.

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Filed under: Rogue, Raiding, Talents, (Rogue) Encrypted Text, Wrath of the Lich King

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