Are Rogues the Best PvP Class?

For the past couple of weeks I have thrown myself into PvP.

(Background: If you haven’t read this blog before, I never did any PvP while leveling or while raiding, and just picked it up about a month ago.)

The first week was pathetic. I was using a raid spec with almost no resilience.  I thought that the gear and spec weren’t as important as the player and if I sucked in my Ulduar gear I would suck in PvP gear too.  It was an experiment in futility.

I did 2v2 arena with a very patient partner (ret pally) and watched our rating plummet as I made every noob mistake in the book.  When I tried BG, I was running around aimlessly, getting yelled at by other players for being at the wrong node or fighting in the wrong place.  When I did WG I felt completely overwhelmed by the aimlessness of the battle.

And yet I was undaunted.  All the other classes complain about rogues in pvp – there must be something to it!

So, I got a pvp dual spec (Mut/Prep), picked up some gear with some resilience and started doing BG and Arena and WG more seriously.  I brought in some guildies to advise me on objectives and strategies.

Almost immediately, my PvP fortunes turned around.  For the past few weeks our 2v2 arena team has had a winning record, bringing my rating back over 1000 (from the low 800s when I was learning and messing up). Also, in most of the BG I have run in the past two weeks been top three in Killing Blows, HKs, and Overall Damage.  I know that’s not indicative of pvp skill, and that winning is more important than individual numbers.  But I’m not HK farming – I’m really trying to help us win.

Are rogues simply built for PvP?  Did the spec change make that much of a difference?  Is it me and my leet skillz? (lol!)

Here’s my anecdotal (unscientific) evidence why its the class rather than my own play.  In BG you often find yourself in one-on-one combat at a bottleneck or resource.  If my cooldowns are available, I can take down most classes (well, not pallys… grrr…).  Except one.  I always lose to other rogues.  Always.  I don’t know if I have ever beaten a rogue unless I jumped  him when he was at low health.

That tells me (again, unscientifically) that I am not that good at rogue PvP.  Or not as good as the other rogues, at least.  This makes me think that my success in PvP due to class mechanics rather than my limited skill as a pvp rogue.

The argument could be made that my years of raiding on the rogue have prepared me well, and that I know my class skills intimately.  I’d agree with that premise.  I am very quick with my Evasion, Vanish, and Cloak due to their raid utility.  However, I’ll also admit that I rarely remember to use Blind or Sap and I often forget that I have Prep until after I no longer need it.  Those aren’t used in raiding, and I haven’t become accustomed to them yet.

So when people gripe about rogues in PvP, I can see their point.  This abilities of the class seem perfect for PvP.  Our stuns, burst damage, and even AoE do wonders in BG and arena.

Or maybe I’m just a fast learner.  My PvP partner is very happy with my progress and wants to get me on a 3v3 team to see how we do.


12 Responses to “Are Rogues the Best PvP Class?”

  1. July 22, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    I loathe having rogues on the other side in PvP. I recently suffered through a WSG where there were FOUR rogues on the enemy side. (That’s 4/10 people.)

    It was like… cheap shot, wait it out…. cheap shot#2… wtf? … cheap shot #3… okay, this is just ridiculous! By cheap shot #4, I was dead. >< Every single time.

  2. July 22, 2009 at 5:07 pm

    I would argue that our cooldowns are powerful enough to give us a chance against most classes.
    Changing to Mut/Prep increases those chances by giving you a second set of them.

    Against another rogue it’s mostly who gets off the disarm first, or who uses their trinket on what and quick reflexes in general.

  3. 3 Lilîth
    July 22, 2009 at 8:22 pm

    Alright. A few thoughts on this… you’re on THE best battlegroup, so your rating is naturally going to be lower. Ret/rogue is also pretty unforgiving in terms of timing, if you don’t chain CC with really precise timing, it’s over. A rogue lives and dies by their cooldowns, and when you’re out, you’re out. About gear, a lot of times your pve gear is better than the pvp gear you have access to, unless you have vault drops. Rogues are squishy as hell, and as someone who has healed one as both a druid and a disc priest, sometimes even with healer cooldowns on you, rogues just die. Not sure what comps you’re facing at that level, but CS+KS+Vanish+Garrote is usually enough to finish off a lot of people, particularly those slow to trinket the kidney. Most teams are wary about trinketing anything but Blind versus your comp, and if they trinket the sap or the repentence, they’re screwed. Just some thoughts, cheers!

  4. 4 John
    July 30, 2009 at 8:52 am

    PvP requires a lot of experience, in the same way PvE does. Rather than learning different raid bosses, you need to basically know every ability of every single class to truly excel at PvP. A strong PvP’er would probably be able to pick up other classes fairly easily.

    The rogues you’re losing to most likely have much more experience fighting against other rogues than you do. As you gain experience, things will change. If I can offer one piece of advice, it’s to always blame the way you played when you lose a PvP encounter – Never blame class imbalances or gear differences. If you’re blaming yourself, you’ll look for ways to improve.

  5. 5 John
    July 30, 2009 at 9:07 am

    I almost forgot, one of the greatest ways to learn about PvP is to watch videos of exceptional players of your class participating in arena matches. A great place to find these “arena videos” is warcraftmovies.com, which I’m sure you’ve heard of. When you watch them, make sure you actually try to understand what they’re doing in each fight, as well as why they’re doing it. It’s almost a fun little puzzle.

  6. 6 Joshua
    October 4, 2009 at 11:52 pm

    So I guess rogues are extremely powerful if played properly in all aspects of pvp and can outdo anyone theoretically? But then there limit is reached after they exhausted al of their CD’s pretty much?

  7. October 5, 2009 at 7:22 pm

    @Joshua – that about sums it up.

  8. 8 Joshua
    March 1, 2010 at 8:55 pm

    It has been quite a while since I last posted on this page 🙂
    When I first posted on this page I had near zero PvP experience at all *sorry but its true*.
    Several months later and a full set of PvP gear and new tactics and professions I have learned that the rogue is not so squishy in all of that resilience I gained only from gear lol I was amazed by the time I had it in almost every piece of equipment I owned, it felt like I was wearing plate. By then I was able to go head to head with Warriors, Paladins and Death Knights while cooldowns even without cooldowns. The only classes that are extremely difficult for me without CD’s now are other rogues that have a lot on them when I go in *or disarm I refuse to bind the means of preventing it to my item lol*. And then of course Warrior/Paladin Tanks but anything else no not really to hard at all, everyone else I am still at a fair playing field when I have no CD’s.

    <.< I guess that was a little long…sorry 😦

  9. 9 Joshua
    March 1, 2010 at 8:58 pm

    Wait I forgot to mention something and Im sure there is a huge difference probably….I never have entered an arena battle. Im assuming everything is different their somehow than it is everywhere else I have been just because it is Arena.

  10. 10 Shun Tzu
    April 16, 2010 at 9:15 am

    Dear all,

    I play mutilate 44/2/25 with an ret pally too, now we are at 1400 bracket, (my highest personal ratting was > 1800 with a shadow priest when I succeed to take my wrathful daggers).

    The comp ret/rogue is not as powerful as others think and you must have a perfect coordination in order to win.

    Some arenas are not good for you like Ogrimar where some burst team can kill you both in no time. There the better tactics for rogues, as you will be taking out of stealth or they come in combat so fast, is to open directly with [Blind] then [Vanish] + [Sap], come back to ret target and CS or Ambush, tricks of the trade, (dismantle if needed) mutilate and sprint /prep/Vanish (S&D on the way), to first target with CS/KS buying time for your ret for a kill.

    If the fight takes long, like more then 30s, you are doing something wrong and most probable you will lose, especially with a healer/dps team.

    In order to win, you must have a good opening. That mean fast SAP (You need to have glyph of sprint first of all) on the targets who can reset the fight (pally/ mag for example) or SAP the healer (if no tree :P), then CS the other targets, wait for your ret partner to come on fight, trick of trade and burn it down. Be aware at sapped target and [Repentance] then [Blind] to keep it CC’ed as you kill the first target.

    If you don’t succeed to kill the first target yet, is time to switch the target and to let your ret partner alone. Sprint to CC’ed target then Vanish/ CS or Garrote/ KS buying some more 9, 10 s to your ret to finish the job.

    If one of opponents is sheathed, go looking for him with macro (/target enemy /cast sap/ clear target) especially if is druid. If is rogue let your ret partner to open on visible target and stay away until the rogue will come out. Then sprint garrote or CS the rogue and immediately Rupture/ dismantle. After that just switch the target and let your pally to deal with rogue is easier for him and you go for his target. Blind /restealth or Vanish on the way and open him like usually CS or Garrote/KS try to put some pressure there.

    If any time you or your partner (when fighting separately) are near to score a kill, ask for immediately assistance, this is the better time to use tricks of the trade.

    I hope that will help you,


    Shunt Tzu

  11. 11 Cole
    May 17, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    Rogues are gay.

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