Hit Rating for Rogues in Wrath

Click here to go to the updated Cataclysm hit rating calculations

Edit:  this post was written in 2008.  The principles are the same, but the actual numbers were updated in the pre-Cataclysm patch 4.01.  After reading this post to learn the mechanics, go here to see the updated numbers.


math_imageAccording to a lot of analysis out there, hit rating is the most important stat for rogues. I don’t think it is as important as it used to be, based on the way that poisons and other talent

s have been buffed, but in the early stages of gearing up

its still a vital stat to look for in your gear.

Warning, some math to follow. Pass this point with caution.

As dual wielders, we take a significant penalty to hit. Without any hit rating, we would miss so often that our dps would suffer greatly. More hits = more damage, of course, but it also means more combo points, more poison procs, more talent procs, etc… In PvE instancing and early raiding, there is no single stat that has as large an effect on your damage as hit rating.

While leveling, its nice to get some hit rating, but you don’t need to focus on it. Once you get to 80 and you are doing heroics and raids, then you will want to find gear with hit rating. How much do you need?

There is no magic number. Some classes try to be hit-capped, meaning that they will never miss. For rogues (and fury warriors, ret paladins, and dual-wielding shamans) that’s out of reach for now. Get as much as you can without making huge sacrifices to Agility, Attack Power, Crit Rating, Haste, etc..


There are three separate miss chances – one calculation for white damage, another for special attacks, and a third for poisons (treated as a spell).

Special Attacks

For special attacks, the chance to miss is 9% 8% against raid bosses. (edit: changed in Wrath)

White Damage

For regular attacks (white damage) at level 80, the chance to miss when dual wielding is

   24% 23% + (Defense Skill - Weapon Skill)*.1%

Unless the opponent’s defense skill is more than 10 points higher than your weapons skill. If that is the case then the equation is

   26% 25% + (Defense Skill - Weapon Skill - 10)*.4%

Translated to simple percentages, that will mean a 24% 23% chance to miss against a level 80 foe, a 25% 24% chance to miss against a level 82 boss (heroics) and a 28% 27% chance to miss a level 83 raid boss with your autoattacks (white damage). So, to be completely hit-capped you would have to have enough hit rating to reduce your chance to miss by 28% 27%.  (edited to reflect reduced dual wield penalty in Wrath)


Poisons are treated as a spell. Pre-Wrath we didn’t worry about this. Now that spell hit and melee hit have been combined we can use our hit rating to reduce the rate that our poisons are resisted (miss). At level 80, the chance to miss with a spell is 17%.


Pause, take a deep breath. More math coming.

The amount of +hit% that you get from hit rating changes with level. That’s one way that Blizzard scales the combat system. The numbers that you got used to pre-Wrath are no longer valid. (I remember going into Karazhan with 270 hit rating and thinking that was awesome. Now, not so much.)

The conversion from hit rating to hit % is now this: For a level 80 character, 32.77 hit rating = 1% reduction in chance to miss for melee combat.

Assuming that you have maxed your weapon skill at 400 when you get to level 80, then…

  1. The first +hit milestone is to reduce your chance to miss by 9% 8%. That will mean that your special attacks never miss on raid bosses. To do that you need 295 262 hit rating. However, many (if not all) rogues will take 5/5 in Precision. If so, it reduces that required hit rating to 131 99. Easy enough. You’ll get that much hit rating without even trying if you have decent gear. (edited due to new hit table in Wrath)
  2. Next is the Poison cap. This means that your poisons will never miss (be resisted). You need 17% for that. However, this uses the hit rating conversion for spells rather than melee. That conversion is 26.23 hit rating = 1% at level 80. So we would need 446 hit rating without Precision, or 315 with Precision.
  3. The next one is to never miss with auto-attacks (white damage). You would need 28% 27% for that, which is a whopping 918 885 hit rating if you have not taken any points in Precision. With the Precision talent factored in, it drops to a still-high value of 754 721.  You could eat some Snapper Extreme to get 40 points toward that total, but you still aren’t going to be hit-capped any time soon.  (edited due to new hit table in Wrath)

In light of this, you are probably expecting that level 80 gear is going to loaded with huge quantities of +hit rating to get you to 721, right? Umm… not so much. Some items have high +hit. However, its not so high that you should be shooting for the hit cap. After you have the initial 8% so your specials won’t miss, make sure you balance out your stats.

The best advice is make sure you are above the “special attacks” cap, and try to be above the “poison cap” if possible (especially for Mutilate rogues). After that, you’re probably going to want to work on agility and crit rating rather than hit rating, because you don’t get as much benefit from stacking hit rating.

(I know, I know, TL;DR)

42 Responses to “Hit Rating for Rogues in Wrath”

  1. December 4, 2008 at 12:37 pm

    Good post, well written.

    I agree, get yourself to 315 hit rating (everything above that is just gravy) and then stack AGI until your eyes bleed.

  2. 2 Xtian
    December 4, 2008 at 1:38 pm


    This is succinct, informative, well-researched, and incredibly relevant. Being added to our list of links for rogues. Thanks much!

  3. December 4, 2008 at 2:33 pm

    Great info, Dinaer.

    I’m finding it hard to locate great pieces with +Hit as I reach 80.

  4. 4 Aker
    December 4, 2008 at 2:57 pm

    Per new testing. Special attacks are 8% to miss and dual wield miss is 27%.


  5. December 4, 2008 at 3:37 pm

    Great post, thank you! You might consider tossing in a little chart at the bottom for the tl;dr crowd. Hit gear is out there, but you won’t see much of it until you hit 80 and start doing heroics. 315 is actually not too terribly hard to hit (pun not intended). Instead of having a little bit of hit on nearly every piece you pick up, you’ll probably end up with a handful of pieces with significant amounts of hit on them, leaving the other slots open for crit/haste/expertise/penetration gear. Makes for a tricky balancing act at times.

  6. 6 Warstory
    December 4, 2008 at 3:48 pm

    Nice work Dinaer! Because Im not a number cruncher… you lost me in most of your equations but thats ok. So if what your saying is true, Is this the order of importance now?

    1. Hit rating = 295 minimum
    2. Agility
    3. Crit rating

    Where does attack power fit into the picture? And what was the bottom line number at level 80 thats needed in agility and crit rating before I start looking into other stuff? Thanks again for an awsome article.

  7. 7 Reigan
    December 4, 2008 at 5:52 pm

    Dude! You are awesome. I have never seen an intelligent, factual discussion on Rogue hit ratings that didn’t make me feel like I was proofreading a thesis written by a mathematician, until now. Our theorycrafters could take a lesson from you. :0)

    Excellent work, as usual. Now I know what to shoot for. Thanks.

  8. December 4, 2008 at 6:50 pm

    Thanks for this. Now everything makes sense once more.

  9. December 4, 2008 at 11:31 pm

    I have had a hard time finding hit gear as well. As I have found upgrades from my T4 and Badge gear, my hit rating has slowly dropped… until I equipped a pair of Saronite Shivs, and the Rhino Hide Kneeboots I got from a quest in Zul’Drak. Those three items alone have 146 +hit. I was instantly over 300 +hit and can turn my attention toward other stats for now.

  10. December 4, 2008 at 11:36 pm

    There is no bottom line number for Agility or Crit Rating. More = better. Always.

    With hit rating, those “caps” are values where the improvement-per-point decreases. With Agility and Crit Rating, that never happens. More of each will always be an improvement. Once you are past the specials hit cap, Agility is the single most important stat, followed by Expertise and Crit. Stack them all.

  11. 11 Warstory
    December 5, 2008 at 12:37 pm

    Cool, thanks for the info.

  12. December 5, 2008 at 1:57 pm

    Nice post.
    You are correct sir. Stacking hit is no longer the way to do it for rogues like TBC.

    Don’t forget though Hit cap is no longer 9%, it’s at 8%.

    Right now it’s juts like for warriors. Stack hit until yellow attacks cap and then stack Agil(Str for Warr).

    The rogues in our guild is doing anywhere around 2500-3kdps. Not bad but they are lagging behind all other classes. (I just posted a Raid DPS Test)

    I guess right now they are still weighing combat vs mutilate. Might also be the gear they are using.

  13. 13 Eridorion
    December 5, 2008 at 3:57 pm

    Very useful post, thanks for that.

  14. December 6, 2008 at 10:54 am

    A couple of commenters above say that the miss % has changed. Can anyone reference that? I can’t find anything that says that.

  15. 15 Rylei
    December 7, 2008 at 10:23 am

    Awesome thread and i have to aggre totaly. Almost all rogues on Sh@Eu atm are trying to push the hit to 500+ wich ive found is retarded and these rogues are so gimped on other stats ive usually seen miself beating em with 700+ dps. My average dps during 25 is only 3,6k but well iam not perfectly geared yet. atm i keep my stats looking like 1097 agi, 3463 ap, 329hit. 28,98% crit and a lonely 14/14 expertise wich iam working on. Also with Imp ff/Misery + draenei aura hit is reduced my even more. also since poisen is “Spell” the ToM boosts it with 3%hit/crit wich is important to state. Anyways great thread.

  16. 16 Rylei
    December 7, 2008 at 10:43 am

    Sorry iam also at 302 haste unbuffed and here is my Profile. http://eu.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Shattered+Hand&n=Ryl%C3%A9i.

    Once again great job.

  17. 17 kilaot
    January 5, 2009 at 2:46 am

    tyvm for this it helped alot

  18. April 25, 2009 at 2:30 am

    I’d say that hitting the Expertise Cap is next on your list once you’re at the YHC. No point being at the PHC if the boss is still dodging you.

    My thoughts on it at: http://ninjachimp.blogspot.com/2009/04/so-what-should-pve-rogues-do-when-they.html

  19. 19 Wan
    July 14, 2009 at 12:32 pm

    This is the explanation I’ve been looking in my entire rogue life. Thanks so much blogger!

  20. 20 Wxerium
    August 30, 2009 at 11:19 am


    Im a rogue with 326 Hit raiting and 39% Crit chance and 370 Ap, is any of this to much or to little, anything i should get more of?

  21. 22 Pari
    September 11, 2009 at 11:15 am

    A correction is to be made regarding your statement about crit rating. More is not always better. The cap is 61.

  22. November 17, 2009 at 8:16 am


    I have built my rogue very differently to most, going for the hh cap with 724 HR and find that I am still very competitive with agi / crit built rogues. In fact, it takes a much better geared rogue to top either my dps or damage done. The main reason for this strategy is the fact that I play with between 700 and 1200ms latency which means that probably a greater % of my damage is from white melee attacks that usual due to the fact that my abilities (ss, evisc etc) take around a second to cast.

    My toon is Teah, found on Stormrage.

  23. 24 Crooked cops plus crooked judges, don't equal justice
    November 26, 2009 at 11:58 am

    do your math ppl you only get 1.5 ap from agl so if u get a 20agl gem you get only 30ap but if u use a 40ap gem you get 40 ap its simple math.

  24. November 30, 2009 at 8:24 pm


    Actually, you only get 1 AP from Agility. So a +20 AGI gem only gives you 20 AP.

    But its not all about AP.

    That +20 Agility not only gives you 20 AP, but also increases crit rating (and dodge and armor, but those aren’t important to rogues). The crit rating makes 20 Agility more valuable than just the AP it offers. That’s why the +20 AGI and the +40 AP are approximately equal.

  25. 26 Nikko
    December 11, 2009 at 12:42 pm

    Rogues get +2 AP from Agi.

  26. 27 Kamiri
    January 2, 2010 at 4:32 am

    Maybe another game but not in WoW.

    Also, the attack power and crit from +20 agility do not outway +40 atp alone. However with Kings it is close.

  27. 28 Calum
    February 25, 2010 at 12:37 am

    thankx m8
    ijust hit 80 with my Rogue and i felt so lost as to how much hit i needed
    just one question, i’d like to go Combat for PvE, wouldn’t it be better for me to focus more on AP that Agi since the specc focuses more on steady damage than burst Crit damage?

  28. 29 Calum
    February 25, 2010 at 12:40 am

    oh right, u get AP from Agility, sorry m8 didn’t read that part
    well the site is called Forever a Noob 😀

  29. 30 josey
    June 3, 2010 at 10:20 am

    Right now my Mutilate rogue is at an average item level of 214. To this point in all of my recount logs, white melee damage accounts for an average of 40% of my total damage done in heroics, with instant poison behind it at a little better than 20% on average. The importance of melee haste and attack power cannot be understated in this context since Instant Poison damage also scales with attack power. There is also the issue of becoming crit capped.

    The crit cap can be raised by taking on additional hit rating. So, it’s still a very important and useful stat for rogues beyond the poison cap. It was likely by design that dual wielders would never effectively reach the hit cap for this reason.

    That said, you should use a spreadsheet to find your optimal hit rating, as it’s not nearly as arbitrary as the expertise cap. There are simply too many gear variations for one individual to tell another what they should gem, and how much of a particular stat they should stack with their current gear, without using a similar tool themselves.

  30. 31 gouger
    June 7, 2010 at 9:53 pm

    my hit rating is nearly 700 is this to high? if it is how do i get it back down? do i change all my gear? i am new to all this so pls help

  31. 32 Kinarra
    July 9, 2010 at 10:03 am

    I must tell you —- This is by far the BEST I’ve ever seen hit explained. I’m no longer confused; even with all the math! Thanks so much!

  32. 33 Gassy
    July 18, 2010 at 11:21 am

    Go to http://be.imba.hu/ and you can see where your Hit Rating is, plus lots of other good stuff.

    But please note, when people in game ask for your gear score they want the GS off of http://www.wow-hereo.com as it takes into account your gems and enchants where the other doesnt.

    I use an add-on called gearscore and you can get it at http://www.curse.com
    It allows you to see the GS of those around you.
    But it too doesnt take into account gems + enchants, but I like it anyway because it still gives you an idea of those in the instance/raid with you.

    • August 1, 2010 at 6:19 pm

      On my server, no one uses the wow-heroes score. They all use the gearscore add-on score, even though it doesn’t account for gems and enchants.

      That’s why we have tanks and dps rolling on and equipping healer gear just to boost their gearscore to get into pug runs.

  33. 35 Pssh
    July 31, 2010 at 12:05 am

    I just became a lvl 80 Rogue and I am completely lost when it comes to the gems-part and the hit-rating system. I’ve asked sevreal friends and they answer kinda differently on how I should approach this matter and when I found this site with explanation of hit-rating it made me understand a little bit on how to do the system, such a great post!

    This is my first character to reach lvl 80 so yes I’m really a newbie as a fellow Rogue, so I would just like to make sure by asking you guys if I am heading the correct path when it comes to first the hit rating system then secondly on what gemming I should go.

    First I have to get my hit-cap to 315 (Duo to special hit and poison hit), then I should cap expertise-hit 26/26 making it in total of a 214, then now come’s where I get a little confused. Apr/arp, how much am I supposed to get here and which gems for which gear piece am I supposed to use/combine?

    If possible I would like to get a little list of the combination, like for an example:
    Head = Relentless Earthsiege Diamond and Fractured Cardinal Ruby
    Neck = Nightmare Tear
    Shoulder = Shoulder = Fractured Cardinal Ruby

    You get the idea on what i’m trying to ask and say about. Would truely appreciate it if someone would help me out here.

    • August 1, 2010 at 6:17 pm

      What you’re asking is not possible. There is no simple formula for gemming. It depends on your gear and spec.

      What spec are you?

      Hit rating poison cap is huge… more so for Assassination rogues than Combat because so much of Assassination spec damage is based on poisons.

      If you are Assassination spec then you ignore ArPen completely. If you are Combat spec then you value ArPen greatly.

      Its impossible to get everything perfect. You can look up the ideal numbers for hit, expertise, armor pen, etc… but you’ll probably find there is no way to reach ALL of them, no matter what gems you use.

      That’s why we use spreadsheets. The best thing you can do is to try Aldriana’s spreadsheet.

      You can put in your gear, then it will show your theoretical maximum dps at the top. Then you can change the gem choices and see how it affects your possible dps.

      Unfortunately, this only works if you have good gear. The spreadsheet only includes the best 10-15 pieces of gear for each slot, typically iLvL 245 or above. If you’re still in 219 or 226 level gear then you won’t find them as choices. If you are familiar with Excel then you can Unhide the gear sheet and add in your pieces manually.

      Otherwise, find a rogue that does good damage and look them up on the Armory. See how they are gemmed and use that as a guide.

      Good luck!

  34. April 13, 2013 at 6:26 pm

    Amazing! Its actually awesome piece of writing, I have got much clear idea regarding from this paragraph.

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Classic WoW:
Dinaer - 11 Assassination Rogue
Cepheid - 13 Prot Warrior
Cartho - 11 Elemental Shaman

Retail WoW:
Dinaer - 120 Assassination Rogue (US - Sen'Jin)
Cartho - 120 Elemental Shaman (US - Quel-dorei)
Derence - 120 Prot/Ret Paladin (US - Sen'Jin)
Metius - 120 Shadow Priest (US - Sen'Jin)
Liebnitz - 120 Arcane Mage (US - Sen'Jin)
Darishin - 120 Resto/Balance Druid (US - Sen'Jin)
Fastad - 90 Subtlety Rogue (US - Sen'Jin)
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