My Current Rogue Play Experience

I actually did some raiding on my rogue this weekend.  (not as much as I’d have liked… we need more tanks!)  I tried Subtlety for the first time since early Burning Crusade.  I also put Mutilate through its paces to look for changes.


Subtlety is way complicated to play.  Trying to balance three finishers (SnD, Recuperate, Rupture) is difficult even with both SnD and Rupture glyphed.  And that’s on a stationary target.  If you are target swapping it is nothing but frustrating.

Also, clearing trash in Sub spec was like chewing tinfoil.  Even with HaT popping up a combo point every 2 seconds, Sub seemed to generate points slower than my Mut spec.  The debuff from Hemo is nice but unnecessary if you have a feral druid to apply Mangle.  Backstab is almost impossible to use on trash due to the positional requirement.  I’d Shadowstep to get behind, and then the mob would move and I was out of position again.

On stationary fights, my Sub dps was somewhere around 1500-2000 less than what I’d expect to do with Mutilate.  I’ll be the first to say that a big part of that is probably my lack of practice with the spec.  Also, you need a very good timer mod to track both the debuffs (Rupture and Hemo) and the buffs (Recuperate and SnD) in an easily visibly way.   I didn’t have one, so my attack management was not optimal.

I’d say that at this time Sub is interesting and more challenging than Mutilate, but also I think it has lower maximum dps, even if played well.   There is no way I would play it in a 5-man instance or solo, because without all the crits fueling HaT the combo point generation would be super-slow.


Mutilate plays almost exactly the way it played before.  Mutilate-Mutilate-Envenom is almost all that you do on boss fights.  Throw in a Rupture every so often to keep that up.  Pop Vendetta on cooldown, preferably in conjunction with Heroism/Bloodlust.  (its funny that when Wrath came out, Mut was a very complicated spec to play, and now its so easy)

My first impression is that it feels… slower.  My energy regeneration seems slower.  I found myself often waiting for energy regen before I could use my next attack.  That created problems due to the new spell queueing system.

I’d be ready for my next Mutilate, autoattacking while waiting for energy to regen.  I’d spam my Mut key.. 11111111111 until the attack went off.  Surprise!  I had queued more than one attacke, so it did two consecutive Mutilates.  This caused some wasted combo points and definitely a hit on my dps.  I know in my head that I need to stop spamming keys, but years of muscle memory are hard to overcome.

In the end, my dps on Festergut in Assassination spec was pretty comparable to what it was before the patch.  It would have been a little higher, I think except (1) I had to bring spores out to ranged groups twice, (2) our raid makeup was horrible for melee dps buffs, and (3) I forgot to switch to Backstab at 35% to take advantage of Murderous Intent.  So if all had gone well I think my dps would have been a little higher than before.

My Vendetta-on-cooldown doesn’t feel like its as effective as the always-up Hunger for Blood was before.    Mathematically speaking, its not quite as effective as glyphed HfB pre-patch.  However, it should be close.  Even knowing that in my head, it didn’t feel close.

Maybe it felt ineffective because of how out-of-whack damage is right now.  The top of our damage meter was flooded with mages and ret paladins and feral druids.  There were players who are typically carried by our raids doing sub-par damage, but on this night they blew my dps out of the water.

As much as I hate to QQ, it was a little frustrating to finish in the bottom half of our dps when I had been at in the #1 spot on 99% of the fights we have done in Wrath.  I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t discouraging.  Still, I think I can do better, so I’ll keep refining things. and try try again.


17 Responses to “My Current Rogue Play Experience”

  1. 1 Asa
    October 26, 2010 at 12:07 pm

    For a good timer mod, check out Event Horizon. I’ve been raiding as sub and the positional requirement for backstab is tough. I wonder if there’s an addon that will show which way mobs are facing.

  2. 2 Hassad
    October 26, 2010 at 1:13 pm

    I use IceHUD. You can set up custom timer bars for buffs/debuffs on you, your target, and I believe your focus target as well. It also displays your health, target health, energy, and combo point count. It’s a very versatile mod, but can be a bit if a resource hog.

  3. October 26, 2010 at 7:47 pm

    I’d like to recommend evl’s slicedice for a simple, elegant, compact bar-based solution. It doesn’t track the hemo debuff (or bleed) although you could add it if you want. Works really well for mutilate though.


    I’m a little surprised that you feel like mutilate is “slower” now. How much haste rating are you wearing in your raid gear?

  4. October 26, 2010 at 7:47 pm

    (alternatively ClassTimer is worth investigating, it’s pretty great too)

    • October 26, 2010 at 8:01 pm

      I use Classtimer, but as far as I can tell it hasn’t been updated properly since the patch and I can’t move the bars around where I want them. So right now the debuffs are in one place and my buffs in another, which is no good for the Subtlety rotation.

  5. October 27, 2010 at 1:12 am

    I completely empathize; We did ICC last week 10/12 in a night, and in my combat spec i was lucky to get in the top 5. Our beast of a BM hunter and guild founder, who was usually the only person to top me in damage/dps in a raid, was down in the dumps with me, too.

    It is frustrating, and I don’t know that there is a solution on the horizon for us for any spec. So far, all i’ve found is more discouragement. Anyone have a ray of sun?

  6. 9 Karmakin
    October 27, 2010 at 2:40 pm

    There’s a lot of specs that seem to be lacking, and it’s only made worse by the massive disparity that exists right now.

    Mages are broken. Plain and simple. WAYYYYY too much DPS. Especially Arcane. To the point where my wife (an Arcane Mage to her grave) thinks there needs to be massive nerfs. Just don’t touch Improved Blink. That’ll piss her off. (She’s weird like that)

    Feral Druids got a good damage buff. It’s not overwhelming, but it puts them in the top tier.

    And Ret Pallies, yes they did get a buff..but that much? I don’t think. I think what happened is that there are less experienced pallies, who suddenly, now that they have some experience, are forced to learn new skills and rotations. So suddenly they unlearn all the bad habits and learn all good habits to maximize their DPS. At least that’s just my opinion. You can’t get over 10k DPS by facerolling. I don’t care how much they were buffed.

  7. November 9, 2010 at 1:13 am

    If any of you have a sec, look at Darynn from Rexxar US on wow-heroes. That’s what i’m going into ICC tomorrow night, to test out the mut spec. I’m wondering if the expertise is worth having at all, or if I should move it to haste if possible? BTW, the green gem’s in there to satisfy the meta req.
    I was sustaining 6300dps on a test dummy in IF, with only poisons and a flask of the north on, which trumps my combat spec by quite a bit. I’m curious how this will work out tomorrow.

  8. November 12, 2010 at 3:43 am

    “and (3) I forgot to switch to Backstab at 35% to take advantage of Murderous Intent.”

    If you’re still having this problem, I started using Power Auras tonight, and found a great Mut spec setup to import. Now when that pops, I have a huge opaque skull on the side of my screen to remind me to “Backstab, dammit.”
    If you do use it, I can send you the mut setup to save some time.

    • November 15, 2010 at 10:03 am

      I am still having this problem, unfortunately. Too many years of muscle memory interfering with the new bells and whistles.

      I may try using Power Auras. I had hoped that Blizzard’s own auras would help, but no such luck.

  9. November 13, 2010 at 9:45 pm

    I tried out Event Horizon and it doesn’t tell you to start backstab when the boss is at 35%. I have heard that Power Auras interferes with DBM so I didn’t try it yet any luck with that?

  10. November 15, 2010 at 2:43 am

    /agree with Chronicstar; no issues with either when simultaneously running.

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Dinaer - 100 Assassination Rogue (US - Sen'Jin)
Derence - 92 Prot/Ret Paladin (US - Sen'Jin)
Metius - 91 Shadow Priest (US - Sen'Jin)
Liebnitz - 100 Arcane Mage (US - Sen'Jin)
Fastad - 90 Subtlety Rogue (US - Sen'Jin)
Darishin - 100 Resto/Balance Druid (US - Sen'Jin)
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