I put “potential” rogue changes in the title because its still early in the development phase of the patch. Nothing is even close to being final until its been tested on the PTR.
Here’s what we have heard so far:
In the assassination tree,
- Hunger for Blood – instead of a self-buff, this ability can only be used when there is a bleed effect on the target. However, it has no stacks and grants a 15% damage bonus.
That’s a very welcome change. It eliminates the mechanic of repeatedly pressing HfB to keep it from dropping off. In addition, the 3-stack of HfB used to buff damage by 9%, and now the effect will be a 15% increase. So this is overall a nice change with increased damage as well as smoother gameplay.
In the Combat tree…
- Adrenaline Rush is having its cooldown reduced.
- Lighting Reflexes – reduced to 3 ranks (from 5). In addition to 2/4/6% dodge, this talent now also grants 4/7/10% passive melee haste.
- Killing Spree – while this ability is active, the rogue does 20% additional damage
- Savage Combat – now causes 2/4% physical damage done (up from 1/2%)
- Mace Specialization – this talent now grants haste in addition to armor penetration.
Wow. Blizzard has said all along that the Combat tree was not where they wanted it to be. So they are giving it a nice shot in the arm. The Adrenaline Rush change is small, but completely welcomed. Adding 10% melee haste to Lightning Reflexes is a great boost to white damage. Now someone might actually take that talent. Savage Combat is having its effect doubled – giving rogues a more useful raid debuff. And for mace rogues (hello? any of you out there?) more melee haste is never a bad thing.
The Killing Spree change is cool, but a little surprising to me. Blizzard has said that they want to improve rogues’ PvE damage without overly boosting their PvP burst damage. Yes, Killing Spree is now a more useful part of attacks in PvE. But won’t that be a source of bigger burst in PvP? Not only the Killing Spree itself, but 20% increase to all damage done while the Spree is active, including white damage and poisons? Maybe there aren’t enough deep Combat rogues PvPing to make it worth worrying about, and this will draw some more in that direction.
No love for Subtlety right now. Lets wait and see what else comes along.