Archive for August, 2012


Rogue Hit and Expertise during 5.0.4 (until Mists)

We’re in an odd period in Warcraft.  As of yesterday, all the game mechanics have changed to their new Mists of Pandaria versions.  However, we’re still stuck at level 85.

If you do a search for combat ratings or hit rating or expertise in Mists of Pandaria, almost all the links you get tell you want to shoot for at level 90.  That doesn’t help us right now.

For now, we still want to get to 7.5% hit and 7.5% expertise, but our combat rating numbers to achieve that are based on level 85 calculations, not level 90.  The combat rating equivalents are not the same.

As long as you are at level 85 you want to aim for 768 hit rating, which will give you 7.5% hit against a Cataclysm raid boss (level 88).  You can go a bit over because that is a soft cap, but try not to.

You also want to get to 7.5% expertise, which will be 768 expertise rating against a Cataclysm raid boss.  That’s a hard cap (as long as we stay behind the target) so any points over that are wasted.

Keep in mind that most of the gear optimizer sites have not updated their code yet, so they are still going to give recommendations based on the Cataclysm mechanics.  You’ll probably have to figure out your reforging by trial and error until the sites or your add-ons are updated.

One more thing:  If you go to a training dummy in a major city to test your mechanics, and you find that your damage is terrible…. The Raiders’s Training Dummy is level 93.  Find a level 88 training dummy to practice on.


First things to do after 5.0.4

Let’s say it’s  Tuesday afternoon/evening.  The patch has gone smoothly (I’m an optimist) and the servers are back up.  You log in and see your rogue.  Nothing looks different at first glance.  What should you do first?

First – Add-ons.  Before you even log in, update your add-ons.  A lot of add-on authors have written new code for the 5.0.4 patch.  For those that haven’t, make sure to Enable Out Of Date Add Ons in your add-on management window.

Second – Talents.  Once you are online, click on your talents.  Not only will they be reset, but the talent “tree” will look nothing at all like what it has looked like for the past history of the game.

The nice thing about this system is that there are almost no wrong choices.  Most talent decisions are for personal preference or playstyle.  There is no need to go online and look up a cookie-cutter spec.  Go down the list and choose the talents that seem most useful to you.

Third – Look at your Glyphs.  Prime glyphs are gone.  Major glyphs are interesting but not overwhelmingly powerful.  They will likely change in usefulness from one encounter to the next.  Minor glyphs have become much more varied and interesting.  I recommend learning as many glyphs as you can to have them all available as needed.

Fourth – check your ability buttons.  Some might have changed/disappeared.

All rogues got the new AoE ability Crimson Tempest, so add that to your bar somewhere.  We all get Shroud of Concealment, which is a group stealth much like the one Illidan uses in the Well of Eternity instance.  That will be fun for skipping trash packs in instances.  Also, we all get Shadow Walk, which makes our stealth temporarily better.  Find room for those abilities.

Assassination got a new ability (Dispatch), but lost Backstab, Sinister Strike, and Eviscerate.  You probably didn’t have buttons for the last two, but you likely have an empty spot from where Backstab used to be.  Put Dispatch there, since it serves a similar purpose.

Combat didn’t get anything new other than the ones listed above.

Subtlety didn’t get any new abilities, but they did lose Sinister Strike.  They also lost either Preparation or Shadowstep, since you can only have one out of those two.  Adjust your button bars accordingly.

Fifth – Check out the new Poison UI.

You’ll be able to apply one damage and one utility poison from the pull-out poison menu.  They don’t go on any particular weapon.  They’re just “there”.

Sixth – Check your hit and expertise stats.  The numbers have been adjusted.  For now it looks like you want to be at 7.5% hit and 7.5% expertise.  Reforge away!

Seventh – Get yourself to an training dummy.  You’ve got some new aspects to your rotation, even at level 85.

Subtlety had its rotation slightly streamlined.  SnD and Rupture now last longer, making it easier to maintain their uptime.  Your energy regen ability is tied to SnD now so you don’t ned to keep Recuperation up all the time.

Assassination has changes in the rotation from the updated Blindside passive ability.  Whenever it procs, your Dispatch comes available and you’ll want to use that.  Otherwise, the rotation is unchanged.

Combat has no significant changes.  SnD lasts a little shorter for this spec.  Revealing Strike has changed and gives an 18 second buff and you want to keep that up most of the time.  Rupture does more damage than Eviscerate so you want to keep Rupture going.

Eighth – Sell your stuff that is now worthless

Since rogues are losing their ranged weapon slot, your Windslicer Boomerang is now useless.  It will be a gray item in your bags, and you can sell it or Void Storage it for memories…

Ninth – Go out and stab stuff.  And shadowstep.

There is no better way to get a feel for the class than to play it.  Run a heroic that you haven’t done in a while.  Queue for LFR.  Since I never play Subtlety, having Shadowstep is amazingly fun.

Tenth – Try AoE Looting.  You’ll wonder how we lived without it for so long.


Legendaries for all

Legendaries!  Apparently, placeholders were datamined for a slew of legendary items as rewards – axe, mace, fist, shield, gun, staff, knife, and sword.  The speculation is that there will be some kind of questline, possibly associated with our friend Wrathion, and that it will offer legendary items as a reward to any class.

Nothing more is known.  No one knows if this speculation is accurate, or if so then how easy or hard they will be to obtain, or how many a guild can get.

This gives me, as a guild leader, some trepidation.  Until now, legendaries have been on the rare side and entirely associated with raiding.

Here’s how our decision-making process went in each tier:

  • Ulduar – legendary healing mace – went to our long-term and best druid healer, who was also an officer in the guild (never finished the weapon)
  • ICC – legendary axe – went to our long term, dependable paladin dps (never finished the weapon)
  • Firelands – legendary staff – went to our long-term mage, who was our top dps and also an officer in the guild.  When she quit WoW, it went instead to our very long-term priest, who was an officer in the guild.
  • Dragon Soul – legendary daggers – went to me, the very long-term GM of the guild (and the only one who has a rogue main)

All of these decisions seem very sensible to me.  The guild could only grind out one legendary at a time, and in each case the recipient was someone who had been in the guild for years and years and was a very proficient player.

However, to the average member of the guild, all they see is that the legendaries go to the guild officers.  That can create resentment.  I think that we managed it pretty well.  I don’t think there was anyone who really challenged the decisions, and no one was so offended that they quit over it.

If there are more legendaries, though, then the more people will want them and there will be more in-fighting.

Obviously, with so little information I will have to reserve judgement.  However, I’m a little nervous about how this will play out.


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)
August 2012
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