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Posts with tag tricks-of-the-trade

Encrypted Text: We'll always be the bad guys

rogue pvp
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 remember the first time I ran into a warlock in vanilla WoW. We were both around level 40, and I met him in an Uldaman run. I didn't even know the class existed until he responded to my advertisement in trade chat. During the dungeon, he was constantly Fearing mobs into other groups, accidentally tab-targeting and tossing DoTs on patrols, and letting his pet steal aggro from the tank. My first impression of warlocks was a negative one, and it took a long time for that prejudice to subside.

Most players' first experience with a rogue will be on the receiving end of our daggers. Whether it's in a battleground or in the open world of a PvP server, rogues are killing thousands of players per hour. If a rogue gets the opener on an unsuspecting player, it's not a pretty sight. The target will be ambushed from nowhere, stunned, slowed, interrupted, poisoned, and bled to death. Being killed by a rogue isn't a fun experience. You're hit with the shock of surprise, denied control of your character, and incredibly restricted. It's easy to see how a player's first experience with a rogue could leave a bad taste in their mouth.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Mastering Tricks of the Trade macros

tricks of the 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. Feel free to email me with any questions or article suggestions you'd like to see covered here.

Tricks of the Trade is a strange ability for rogues. Why would we sacrifice our own damage (by spending energy) to boost the damage of someone else? Aldriana and Pathal have both spoken out against TotT's misguided benevolence and its boring mechanics. Rather than being a situationally-useful ability that we pull out when the time is right, TotT has become a set-and-forget chore that we just auto-cast on the second-highest DPS in raid.

Lore issues aside, Tricks of the Trade is a pretty good ability. Used properly, it can greatly accelerate the rate that tanks pick up aggro, which makes dungeons and raids just a bit easier. While it's a DPS loss for the rogue casting TotT, it's a net gain for the raid's DPS, and that's a sacrifice that we'll have to make. It's also incredibly potent in PvP; granting an ally a 15% damage boost is a pretty big deal.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Lichborne: Final notes on patch 5.3 and a legendary shortcut

Lichborne Final patch 53 notes and a legendary shortcut
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done.

By the time you read this, patch 5.3 should be on live servers. We've already written a couple columns on what patch 5.3 will mean for death knights, but as always, things change on the PTR. With that in mind, this week we'll take a final look at patch 5.3 for death knights and what you can expect and do once the servers are back up (if they aren't already). I also have a couple notes on completing Wrathion's legendary quest line for death knights.

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Filed under: Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Lichborne: Patch 5.3 and the death of festerblight

Lichborne Patch 53 and the death of festerblight
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done.

In a recent update on the patch 5.3 PTR, Blizzard applied an update that applied some unexpected changes to the death knight unholy tree, most of them nerfs.
Blizzard
Death Knight

Unholy

This has, unsurprisingly, left many death knights at a loss. After patch 5.2 seemed to cure unholy's woes and allow it to at least be a viable and fun alternative to frost, these nerfs came as a surprise. Frost is so far still the more damaging death knight DPS spec in patch 5.2, so the idea that unholy is the one that got nerfs was somewhat discouraging.

That said, it might not be as bad as you think. It's worth noting that in the long run, the Scourge Strike buff should cancel out the nerfs to Festering Strike and Unholy Might, at least in theory. This brings to mind one question as to what this shifting of damage toward Scourge Strike is actually meant to accomplish. Essentially, the main purpose here appears to be a nerf to festerblight.

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Filed under: Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Encrypted Text: Rogue questions, rogue answers

bloodrazor
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.

Why don't our poisons last forever, like death knight weapon runeforging?

New rogues have no idea how easy they have it. Back in my day, rogues had to hike uphill in the snow to a special poison vendor hidden deep in the bowels of the capital cities. Once there, we had to look at our shopping list of obscure reagents to figure out what to buy and in what quantities. Rogues had to combine these ingredients in vials, creating one poison dose that faded every time we zoned. Vanish also consumed a vendor reagent, and we had to farm up Blindweed Fadeleaf ourselves in order to use Blind at all. Once you've died because you didn't have any Blinding Powder in your bags, you see class reagents differently.

The fact that poisons no longer consume bag space in Mists of Pandaria was considered to be a boon. Poisons are easier now than they've ever been before.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: When your DPS doesn't matter

lfr tentacle
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.

Rogues are all about DPS. You've heard my spiel about us being the only pure melee class, which makes DPS the only thing we bring to the table. SportsCenter can claim that Tim Tebow is a great quarterback, in spite of his shortcomings, because of his "intangible" benefits. Rogues don't have that luxury. If you parse poorly, then you get labeled as a bad rogue.

I was in the Raid Finder last week, and a warrior from another server tried calling me out for using Cloak of Shadows to stay in during Morchok's Black Blood phase. "Hey, that rogue didn't run out, that's not fair," he complained in raid chat. The last time I checked, all is fair in love, war, and the DPS meters.

However, there is one higher calling than DPS, and that is the success of your raid or party. Even though it's against our nature, we occasionally have to sacrifice some of our personal DPS in order to benefit the raid.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Patch 4.1 already a hit with 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. This week, we discuss the upcoming PTR changes.

As you've probably heard, patch 4.1 is now being tested on the PTR. We know about a few of the new dungeons and raid bosses, and Blizzard's developers have given us some sparse information about the incoming class changes. There wasn't anything earth-shattering in the notes -- at least until you reached the rogue section. Once I saw our class' name in that infamous Brittle Yellow hue, I was prepared for the worst. Patches can only go one of two ways for a rogue: awful or awesome.

There's not a single patch note for rogues that is going to increase our DPS. There's not a single patch note for rogues that is going to lower our DPS. Instead, our section of changes features quality of life and survivability changes that have me more excited than a toddler on Christmas Day. You already know that I love Stealth, and it gets even better. Recuperate, the best leveling spell in the game, got buffed back to its Cataclysm beta values. Tricks of the Trade received a quality-of-life change that takes it from good to amazing. Patch 4.1 has taught me that I don't need to have my damage buffed to fall in love.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Rogue mechanics for the Cataclysm era

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.

After writing Encrypted Text for over two years now, I have gotten into the groove of writing about rogue life at level 80. I've talked about all about armor penetration's various iterations (and eventual removal) and where to snag the best leather gear with your emblems justice points. We've discussed the trade skills that best suit the discriminating rogue and how to hide from our would-be assassins and their Turkey Shooters. However, all that is about to change.

Blizzard has implemented a ton of changes that affect the rogue class in serious ways. Cataclysm is by far its most ambitious expansion yet. With such a huge delta between what was and what is, the transition is going to be a bit rough as we cope with the post-Shattering world. Poisons have been streamlined (again), our Stealth was buffed significantly, and our talent trees were redesigned from the ground up to ensure that each spec provides a useful raid buff. I think it's safe to say that the rogue as we know it has evolved.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: My favorite rogue addons


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 my favorite rogue addons, and how to use them to improve your WoW experience.

It's about time I wrote this guide, as I'm pretty sure I promised it all the way back in fall of 2009. My planned column posting schedule was completely upheaved with the announcement of the patch 3.3 Vanish fix (which ended up being vaporware), and so I never got around to the topic of rogue addons. Luckily for you, I've had the opportunity to work with several new addons in the meantime!

Now, I'm going to preface this guide with the disclaimer that I haven't had the chance to test every rogue mod out there, so if you have a favorite, please post it in the comments. I'm always looking for the best mods out there, and once I've found one that solves a particular problem, it can be a while before I go looking to replace them. With ICC becoming a more of a regular farm raid and less of a great unknown, I've had more free time to begin my period of self-examination before the next tier of content is released. If you're looking to add some spice to your rogue experience, try adding a few new addons to the mix!

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Filed under: Rogue, Add-Ons, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: The last percent

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 how to maximize your DPS by using a few custom macros and clever use of your abilities.

If you've been keeping up on yesterday's patch notes, you'll notice that quite a few of the hybrid and caster ranged classes received some significant DPS buffs. They have been trailing in the ICC meters, and these changes were designed to bring them back within range of the rest of the pack. Rogues have still been stunning on every fight in Icecrown, but the competition is definitely heating up. The true test will be how we fare against the Lich King himself.

We've all heard about the hybrid tax
: Blizzard regrets mentioning it, and every druid and ret paladin brings it up when they complain about their position on the DPS charts. Some estimates put it between 5-10%, but obviously hybrid classes are currently designed to stay near the pure DPS without passing them up. However, how many rogues are actually doing their maximum theoretical DPS? There are several common mistakes or oversights that can cost us dearly. Read on for a detailed list of ways you're hurting your own DPS, and how to fix it before your next raid.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Leveling a rogue, level 71-80


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 leveling a rogue from level 71 to level 80.

Your goal is firmly in sight: your rogue is ready to being his or her assault upon the Lich King's lands. With only a fleeting few levels between you and the level cap, these last few minutes are among the most important in your rogue's development. With nearly every trick available and our DPS rotations fleshed out, your rogue will be feeling more and more like the level 80 you are about to become.

All three talent trees are fairly viable for leveling, and so this is by far the most flexible period of the leveling process. As I mentioned in the last installment, experimenting with different specs, rotations, and playstyles will only become harder and harder to do once you reach level 80. During these important formative levels, max out your respect costs and give every build a fair shake. You'll be a better rogue for it in the end.

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Filed under: Rogue, Leveling, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Macro guide for rogues


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 of the most common rogue macros in use today.

Over the past couple of weeks, I've had the opportunity to play my rogue quite a bit more than I am typically able to. Brewfest and Onyxia have had me busy every night, helping my guild mates slay Coren Direbrew over and over again. I was able to pick up a Direbrew's Shanker 2.0, although it won't see much use, it's still nice to see one in my bank beside the previous versions.

I captured this bit of a World of Logs parse from one of the Onyxia attempts, where I was able to my AoE combination macro: it's a very deadly combination. Looking at numbers like these make me wonder if perhaps the great FoK nerf of 3.2.2 wasn't as heavy-handed as it was made up to be. With a Vanish fix on the horizon for patch 3.3 (who's PTR is coming "soon") and the red-hot topic of 'weapon swapping', I decided to do a bit of housecleaning and tidy up my macros and addons in anticipation.

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Filed under: Rogue, How-tos, Classes, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Fan of Knives mechanics deep-dive

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 Fan of Knives, and how to get the most out of it.

One of the great Rogues on my server recently released a video, showcasing some unique world PvP clips. All of them involved aerial kills using Killing Spree and engineering items to blow up a target on a flying mount. I showed this video to a few of my friends who also play Rogues, and many of them were surprised that you could successfully kill opponents in midair, and that Killing Spree was even usable while moving.

The conversation that followed revealed that they were unaware of several other Rogue mechanics that aren't typically covered in your average "how to Rogue" guide or even completely understood by veterans who've been playing for years. I decided to do some intensive testing and exploration into a few of these mechanical anomalies that still elude even experienced raiders and arena combatants alike. I focused on Fan of Knives in particular, as this is the newest spell added to our arsenal.

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Filed under: Rogue, Tips, Tricks, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: Rogue tips for raiding Ulduar, part 3

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 of the general raiding tips every Rogue should know.

As a break in the boss-by-boss breakdown of Ulduar fights, I wanted to go over a few general raiding tips for Rogues. Some of them may be very old ideas that you've been using since level 60, while a few others are new tricks that we've learned in WotLK. Hopefully you'll be able to glean a few good bits of information to take with you the next time you zone into any raid. There's nothing more important than properly preparing for a new fight, but knowing the general tactics for any encounter will make understanding new fights much easier.

First, however, I would like to comment on the new Overkill. Its new form is a significant buff when looking at total energy generated, and also for PvE Mutilate Rogues. However, it is a nerf to our 6-second burst window during a Cheap Shot -> Kidney Shot combo. I feel this will end up being a net buff for Rogues, as relying solely on the first 6 seconds of a fight in PvP has become far to gimmicky for us to rely on.

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Filed under: Rogue, Tips, Raiding, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Breakfast Topic: Game-changing skills


So I was thinking about grabbing some PvP achievements on my Death Knight the other day, when a rather glorious thought popped into my head: If some Hordie tried to exploit terrain in Warsong Gulch, my Death Grip and I were going to have a lot of fun drawing their cheating self into the midst of a knot of angry Alliance.

Of course, there's always the problem of LOS, but still, I can't help but think that Death Grip may be so effective that it ends some of the frustration of WSG in which flag-bearers find ways to jump over holes in the terrain such that it's near impossible to get to them. It'll be nice if it does happen that way, and I don't say that just because I am a Death Knight. New skills that help solve old problems are always nice.

There's other new skills for various classes that may have similar effects in PVE or PVP, such as Tricks of the Trade for Rogues or Aspect of the Dragonhawk for Hunters. Are you projecting that any of the new Wrath skills or talents will be game changers for the way we play and compete? Have you seen them changing things already?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Breakfast Topics, Leveling, Classes, Buffs, Enchants, Battlegrounds

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