Archive for September 24th, 2012


Rogue Hit and Expertise Caps in Mists of Pandaria

This is a rewrite of my past posts on hit rating.  I have updated this with each expansion, reworking the numbers each time to reflect the new figures.  This one applies to level 90 rogues in Mists of Pandaria.  

Mechanics have changed with Mists of Pandaria.  If you understand the mechanics, or if you just want the numbers, then scroll to the bottom where there is a chart.


The attack process has been relatively unchanged for a while, ever since combat ratings were introduced.  We were on a one-roll system that determined with a single random number if you hit, missed, crit, or glanced.  Now, in Mists of Pandaria there is a two-roll system.  The first roll determines if you hit, miss, or glance and then the second roll determines if you crit.  The fundamental hit mechanics have not changed, though.

When looking at relative weights of stats, the first priority for any rogue is to get to a point where their attacks will hit reliably.  Since we dual wield, we suffer a significant hit penalty.  We likely won’t get to a point where we never miss.  However, it is possible to get our stats so that our special attacks (e.g. sinister strike, mutilate) and our poisons never miss.  That is vitally important, because our special attacks give us our combo points, crits, procs, and energy return, and poisons (especially for assassination rogues) are a huge portion of our dps.

While leveling, its nice to get some hit rating, but you don’t need to focus on it. Once you get to 90 and you are doing endgame heroics and raids, then you will want to find gear with hit rating. How much do you need?

Rather than just throw numbers at you, here is an explanation of how hit rating works, along with the numbers that we need to aim for.  (FYI – I am a teacher in RL.. I can’t help it)

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

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, Crit Rating, Haste, etc..  Lets look at the “caps” in our ratings.

There used to be  three separate miss chances – one calculation for white damage, another for special attacks, and a third for poisons (treated as a spell).  However, in Mists of Pandaria, the poisons use the melee hit chance.  That simplifies things for us into just two hit chances – white damage and everything else.

Special Attacks and Poisons

In MoP, for special attacks the chance to miss is 7.5% against raid bosses.

White Damage

Dual wield classes get a 19% penalty to their hit chance on autoattacks (white damage).  The base miss chance is 3% and you add or subtract 1.5% per level difference between attacker and defender.

Translated to simple percentages, that will mean a 22% chance to miss against a level 90 foe, a 25% chance to miss against a level 92 boss (heroics) and a 26.5% chance to miss a level 93 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 26.5%.

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-Mists are no longer valid.

The conversion from hit rating to hit % is now this: For a level 90 character, 340 hit rating = 1% reduction in chance to miss for melee combat.

Here are the +hit numbers to look for:

  1. The most important +hit milestone is to reduce your chance to miss by 7.5%. That will mean that your special attacks and poisons never miss on raid bosses. To do that you need  2550 hit rating.
  2. The next one is to never miss with auto-attacks (white damage). You would need 26.5% for that, which is a whopping 9,010 hit rating . You could eat some +hit rating consumables to get that figure down, but you still aren’t going to be hit-capped any time soon.

Hit rating is immensely important up to the special attack and poison cap (+7.5%).  That’s called a “soft cap” because you can still increase dps by going above it.  However, any hit rating above the poisons cap only helps your white damage, so its not as important.  Most experts will recommend that you stop adding hit rating after you reach 7.5%.

The white cap is called a “hard cap” because there is no benefit at all if you exceed it.

These numbers seem very high to us compared to what we are used to in Cataclysm.  Stats on gear will be quite inflated by the time we reach level 90, so getting these soft caps should not be difficult.

The best advice is make sure you are above the special attacks and poison cap (+7.5% hit), and try to be at the expertise hard cap (+7.5% expertise, assuming you are attacking from behind) to get rid of dodges. After that, you’re probably going to want to work on agility, mastery, and haste rather than hit rating, because you don’t get as much benefit from stacking hit rating.

A note on expertise:

A lot of people read a blog post from Ghostcrawler that said that spells have a 15% miss chance.  It is worth noting that this does not apply to rogues at all.  Poisons have been moved to the melee hit chance, and rogue attacks do not use the spell hit at all.  Traing Dummy testing by Elitist Jerks and other places has confirmed this.  Poisons are no longer considered to be a spell.

That said, expertise is a valuable stat for all rogues.  Dodged attacks are bad.  Will it need to be capped?  Testing and theorycrafting will tell how its value compares to haste, crit, mastery, etc…  It doesn’t hurt to have it, though.


TL; DR Summary:

Specials and Poisons Hit Cap (7.5%) 2550
White Attack Hit Cap 9010
Expertise Cap (7.5%) 2550

Reputation Rewards for Rogues in Mists of Pandaria

**Edited to reflect that Justice Point gear had its reputation requirement removed in a hotfix after launch**

This post is based on what I know as of a week before launch.  I’ll update it if I learn more or if things change.

As you level, you’ll earn reputation with many of the available factions through the questing that you do.  Once you reach the level cap there will be a large number of repeatable quests with most factions to grind out rep.  Interestingly, none of the factions require you to reach Exalted to buy their armor.  You get the rare (blue quality) items at Honored, and then the epic (purple) items at Revered.  The reason to get to Exalted is for vanity gear like mounts.

Also keep in mind that you no longer earn reputation by wearing a tabard in dungeon runs.  In MoP, its all questing and dailies.

Here’s a rundown on what you’ll look for.

The Klaxxi

This faction is found in the Dread Wastes.  It provides a blue quality wrist item that you can get at HonoredCruel Mercy Bracers , a blue quality one-handed mace at Revered – Amber Sledge of Klaxi’vass -and a purple neck item at Revered – the Choker of the Klaxxi’va as well as a purple waist slot item, the Klaxxi Lash of the Borrower and a purple leg slot, the Dreadsworn Slayer Legs. It also has a lot of blacksmithing plans and a scorpion mount at exalted.  Oddly, there is also a blue quality dagger at Exalted – the Amber Slicer of Klaxxi’vess.

Golden Lotus

Located in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms.  From this group you can get a blue quality neck item at HonoredAmulet of Swirling Mists and a blue quality hand slot at HonoredSurehand Grips.  There is a mastery trinket at Honored also with an interesting ability (PvP?) – Mogu Rune of Paralysis.  They have a lot of leatherworking and tailoring patterns at Honored as well.  At Revered you can get an epic ring – Anji’s Keepsake, epic boots – Softfoot Silentwrap – and an epic shoulder – Imperion Spaulders.

You need to get to Revered with Golden Lotus to start dailies with the August Celestials and Shado-Pan.

The August Celestials

This group has a lot of stuff.  You’ll find their quest hub in the Krasarang Wilds, but you unlock them by getting to a certain rep with the Golden Lotus.  At Honored you can get a blue cloak (Bladesong Cloak) and a blue quality chest (Refurbished Zandalari Vestment).  At Revered you will find the purple Fingers of the Loneliest Monk for your hand slot, Tukka Tuk’s Hairy Boots for your feet, and Quillpaw Family Bracers for your wrist.  There are three enchanting recipes at Revered, and two mounts plus a tailoring recipe (28 slot bag!) at Exalted.


This faction – found in the Townlong Steppes and another follow-up after the Golden Lotus – has a few good rogue items.  At Honored you can buy the blue quality Mark of the Dancing Crane for your finger slot or the Tough Mushanhide Leggings for your legs.  Once you hit revered you have access to the epic Blackguard Cape, Red Smoke Bandana for your head, and Hawkmaster’s Talon trinket (look at all that agility!).  Plus they have some enchanting recipes and mounts.



Here are the reputation items available for the various slots:

Note the general lack of daggers and swords.  Other than quest rewards, you’ll have to run instances to find those, or watch the auction house and be prepared to pay big-time gold for the few BoE weapons around.

There are an absolute ton of daily quests for these factions that open up at level 90.  Blizzard has removed the cap on the number of daily quests you can do each day, so be prepared to get to work.


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)
September 2012
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