New Rogue Changes Coming

Posted 1 year, 7 months ago at 8:27 pm. 4 comments

I’ll have more notes on this tomorrow morning.  But I wanted to get this out now.

From Gamnin on the Beta forums, Source.

Hello rogues,

We’ve got some updates coming soon for the rogue class and I wanted to duck in and give you a sneak preview of what we’ve been working on as well as our future goals. Below are lists (by no means exhaustive) of some of these changes and goals.

General

- Quality of life improvements: Removal of various reagents (Thieves’ Tools, Flash Powder) as well as a Poisons skill change. We’re removing the Poisons skill and making the finished poisons available on vendors for purchase. This should free up a fair amount of bag space.
- Envenom: Now also increases your chance to apply poisons by 25% for 2-6 seconds (based on combo points).
- Wounding Poison: No longer stacks. The first application now reduces healing by 50%.
- Anesthetic Poison: Now also removes one Enrage effect from the target.
- Evasion, Sprint, Vanish: Cooldown reduced to 3 minutes. (Talents that reduce cooldown take this down to 2 minutes.)
- Cloak of Shadows: Cooldown increased to 2 minutes. (Elusiveness now reduces this cooldown to 1 minute.)
- A new level 75 ability has been designed. This is going to be one of the bigger teases as we’re not quite ready to talk about this one yet. I will say that will add some much needed group utility.
- Fan of Knives: Weapon normalization to equalize effectiveness regardless of weapons carried.

Assassination

- Mutilate: No longer requires you be behind the target.
- Relentless Strikes: Talent is too “required” and will be made more accessible. Vigor will replace its spot in the tree and a new talent will be created to fill Vigor’s spot.
- Find Weakness: Made passive to cut down on the number of triggered effects that either don’t affect gameplay or affect it in a negative way.
- Cut to the Chase: No longer requires a critical Eviscerate or Envenom. The finisher just has to land.
- Hunger for Blood: Now removes any harmful physical effect instead of Bleed or Magic effects. Bleed effects will still be removed (as all are physical) as well as effects like Mortal Strike, Aimed Shot, Expose Armor etc…

Combat

- Riposte: Now generates a combo point.
- Mace Specialization: This will grant armor penetration when using a mace. (The warrior talent will as well.)
- Deflection: Reduced to 3 ranks for 2/4/6% parry. This should soften the prereq for Riposte.
- Fist Weapon Specialization: Merged with Dagger Specialization.
- Dagger Specialization: Renamed Close Quarters Combat, moved to tier 3.
- Dual Wield Specialization: Moved to tier 1. Lightning Reflexes swapped locations with it and still needs a little more “oomph”.
- Unfair Advantage and Stay of Execution: Change to more offensive/utility (read mobility) talents. Too much defense on this tier.
- Killing Spree: Weapon normalization to equalize effectiveness regardless of weapons carried.

Subtlety

- More attractive Tier 1 to draw in all types of builds.
- Fewer dagger specific talents to allow additional build options.
- Wrongfully Accused: Reviewed. This talent doesn’t fit well in this location. May be moved lower and/or redesigned.
- Shadow Dance: A bit awkward at the moment. Due for some polish and some design tweaks.

Plenty to do still as you can see. As I mentioned, this isn’t everything we’ve got our eye on but gives you something to discuss and look for in an upcoming beta patch. Please add to the list anything you think needs special attention.

Thanks for reading. I’m going back to work.

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Valenna in Northrend

Posted 1 year, 7 months ago at 2:26 pm. 0 comments

My new mount ... j/k  Flight points have custom deparature mounts.

On Wednesday, thanks to an anonymous benefactor (and Phae’s persistence), Valenna landed in Valiance Keep on the southern edge of the Borean Tundra on the beta servers.  But of course, someone already stole the name “Valenna” on the server, so in my efforts to find a suitable replacement she was renamed “Parry”.  Let’s just say this really isn’t my favorite choice and has lead to some really confusing combat logs.

Continue Reading…

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WotLK Beta 8820 Rogue News

Posted 1 year, 7 months ago at 9:59 pm. 7 comments

I found some addtional Glyphs listed on WotLK Wiki and included them at the bottom of the list in italics.

First of all, I think every other class needs to send Blizzard a thank you card for the following change to Mace Specialization.  As a Combat Swords Rogue (and as a Resto Druid), I’m pretty excited to see it myself.  This should make Mace Specialization a bit more attractive for raiding as well.

Mace Specialization (Combat) no longer stuns enemies, and instead increases critical damage bonus by 2/4/6/8/10%.

GLYPHS!

Pretty, but not an actual glyph.

Inscriptions for Rogue abilities and talents have been released (along with just about every other class).  Honestly, I’m not excited about most of them, which I guess may be a good sign that they might be balanced somewhat. ^_^  Though Glyph Gouge and Glyph Backstab look like they might be a great combination for leveling!

  • Glyph – Sap – Increases the duration of Sap by 10 sec.
  • Glyph – Evasion – Increases the duration of Evasion by 5 sec.
  • Glyph – Backstab – Increases the damage dealt by Backstab to stunned and incapacitated targets by 20%.
  • Glyph – Rupture – Increases the duration of Rupture by 5 sec.
  • Glyph – Eviscerate – Increases the critical strike chance of Eviscerate by 10%.
  • Glyph – Expose Armor – Increases the duration of Expose Armor by 10 sec.
  • Glyph – Feint – Reduces the energy cost of Feint by -10.
  • Glyph – Shiv – Reduces the energy cost of Shiv by -5.
  • Glyph – Deadly Throw – Increases the range on Deadly Throw by 5 yards.
  • Glyph – Hemorrhage – Increases the damage bonus against targets afflicted by Hemorrhage by 40%.
  • Glyph – Adrenaline Rush – Decreases the cooldown of Adrenaline Rush by 60 sec.
  • Glyph – Gouge – Reduces the power cost of Gouge by -10.
  • Glyph – Slice and Dice – Increases the duration of Slice and Dice by 3 sec.
  • Glyph – Sprint – Decreases the cooldown of Sprint by 60 sec.
  • Glyph – Garrote – Increases periodic damage dealt by Garrrote by 45%, but decreases the duration by 3 sec.
  • Glyph – Ambush – Increases the range on Ambush by 5 yards.
  • Glyph – Ghostly Strike – Increases the damage dealt by Ghostly Strike by 50% and the duration of its effect by 4 sec., but increases its cooldown by 10 sec.
  • Glyph – Blade Flurry – Reduces the energy cost of Blade Flurry by 100%.
  • Glyph – Preparation – Decreases the cooldown of Preparation by 2 min.
  • Glyph – Crippling Poison – Increases the chance to trigger Crippling Poison by 10%.
  • Glyph – Sinister Strike – Your Sinister Strike critical strikes have a 40% chance to add an additional combo point.

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Politics of WoW

Posted 1 year, 7 months ago at 11:48 am. 3 comments

wow-states

Way to Tell You’re Playing Too Much WoW™ #327:  You look at political maps of the USA and wonder why the Alliance allowed the Horde to grab the center.  This is why Alliance always loses. =( Also, you’re really baffled at the Paladins and Mages states. 

LOL.  You thought this was going to be some deep conversation about political drama in guilds or something.  Maybe next time. ^_^

p.s. Either Horde, Alliance, Mage or Paladin is still welcome to send me a beta key. =)

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5 Ways to Improve Your Play

Posted 1 year, 8 months ago at 12:50 pm. 9 comments

Apology for another post without images.  I don’t have any image tools where I am. =(

Ok, maybe it’s not five.  I haven’t even written the rest of the post yet, but I had to write my title first because I needed it to match those Cosmopolitan, teen-girl magazine article titles that Matticus is so fond of.  <3 Matticus!  And I’m not going to change it because five just seems like such a fun number!

This post is a response to another post on another blog, which I’ll reveal at the end, but not now, because I want you to read this first (because I’m selfish like that ^_^). 

In this other post, the author posts that reading theorycrafting and using tips from other sources is cheating.  The post goes on to say that such tips usually focus on doing damage at the cost of good play.  And I have to agree that some may, but the post goes on to say that people that take these tips and research and then use the information are brainwashed or selfish.

I think this is more about the mindset and philosophy of the player than the tips themselves or using the tips.

The post reminded me of the debate between science and religion, especially over evolution. You have one side that believes they are correct because they’ve read it in a book, have faith that it’s correct, but refuse to listen to research or proof to the contrary.  And you have the other side that has done endless research, consulted experts, applied their knowledge to the real world and come to an educated conclusion.

Which viewpoint did the original post seem to parallel? Definitely creationism in my opinion.  However, the post didn’t then follow through to encourage people to research for themselves.  Instead, it seems like the post encouraged players to gain their knowledge only through their own play.

If you want to play a single player game then researching how to play the game may be considered cheating to some people.  Those same people might not want to know where all the secrets are in the game without finding them on their own.  In a single player game, I know I’ve approached it from both angles.  Sometimes I want to figure out everything for myself and then other times, I’m simply interested in experiencing everything the game has to offer and not that concerned if I find information to help me.

However, World of Warcraft is a multiplayer game. That’s the second M in MMO. Not learning how to optimize your role for multiplayer is a disservice to everyone you play with. This is true no matter what sport or game you play. Would a professional athlete train by themselves in a vacuum, or would they research and find out the best methods of training, exercise and play to perform better at their sport? Team sports players study hundreds of strategies from many sources looking to improve their play. No one on a team wants to be that person that is ill-prepared for that next game simply because they didn’t do their research on their sport or the team they are about to play.

So, did you really want a list of ways to improve your play?  Did you want to take some bulleted list of tips from some therocrafter and apply them to the way you play your game?  Well, that’s your choice isn’t it?  It’s your game, right?  But it’s my blog and here they are. =P

The Five Ways to Improve Your Play

  • Research your class. This includes everything from knowing every one of your abilities and talents and keeping up-to-date on the changes to your class.  If you are a Priest, you should be aware that all Priests now have Fear Ward, and if you are a Druid, you should know that if two Tree of Lifes are in the same group that their Tree Auras stack.
  • Research how to optimize your class.  This is the step that the other post addresses.  You can’t just take one tip from some random place and voila! you’re instantly the best player.  You should research as much as you can, especially in regard to your role in a group.  Seeks out multiple sources and see if there’s a consensus or debate among strategies.  Analyze the information and come up with your own informed opinion.
  • Research the basics about other roles and classes.  Yes, you should know the basics about those classes you don’t play.  Because you’re interacting with those other roles and classes and you should be aware of how they can help you and how you can help them.
  • Research the encounters you expect to face.  Knowing in advance your role in an encounter and about mob abilities and phases can mean the difference between a wipe and a one-shot.
  • Apply your knowledge.  Like most things in life, you can read and read and read, but if you don’t actually practice what you’ve read, you can’t really understand it or know for yourself what will and won’t work for you.
  • Talk to others. This is a way to improve your play that many people overlook.  People tend to think that everyone has read what they’ve read and everyone is playing the same way. 
  • Prepare to revise your opinion.  You’re not going to improve if you’re convinced you’ve found The One True Way™ and refuse to listen to any more advice.  World of Warcraft changes with every patch and even if you found The One True Way™ yesterday, it may not be the one true way today.
  • Share when possible.  Not really a way to improve your play, but certainly should be mentioned.  Be prepared to share your information, but don’t be braggart about it.  Don’t shove it down other people’s throats.  Some people don’t want your advice and will not take it well.  However, I do believe most people do want to improve, and by helping others you make your play more enjoyable.

So, there you have it, the five, er, eight ways to improve your play. I’m sure there are more general ways out there of improving your play. 

And I’m always open to being wrong … sometimes and only when I’m not right.  ^_^

This post is a response to Vanity Fair and You: The Untold Story, Surzala’s guest post  on 4haelz.blogspot.com.

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WotLK Beta Changes

Posted 1 year, 8 months ago at 4:37 pm. 4 comments

Blizzard has lifted the Wrath of the Lich King NDA. In the first beta patch, there are a lot of changes to existing talents and abilities for all classes. This patch will very likely occur a month before the expansion, much like the patches before Burning Crusade made changes to hit and critical strike rating and introduced Shadowstep, Mutilate, and Surprise Attacks.

In general, these changes seem like an attempt to streamline current abilities and make them more valuable to Rogues. One noticeable design change is the removal of some of our talents/abilities to resist an effect and rather grant a reduction in the length of the negative effect instead. I don’t really see this as a positive change as being able to avoid an effect (like Fear) +10% of the time allows you to have complete control over your character when you resist. With the new changes, you always get affected but it lasts 30% less than it would have otherwise. For a Fear, that’s 7 seconds down from 10 seconds. This is undoubtedly another response to feelings that Rogues and Warriors are dominating in Arenas.

General:

  • Hit Rating, Critical Strike Rating, and Haste Rating now modify both melee attacks and spells.
    Woot! Finally, a excuse to start wearing cloth. ~_^

Rogue:

  • Blade Twisting (Combat) now cause all damaging melee attacks to have a 10% chance to daze for 4/8 seconds.
    Expanded to all melee attacks rather than just Sinister Strike, Backstab, Gouge and Shiv, this is changed from 10%/20% for 8 seconds to 10% for 4/8 seconds. This could be good because it definitely will occur more often, but I’m not so sure that a Daze effect is worth the talent points.
  • Deadened Nerves (Assassination) now reduces all damage taken by 1/2/3/4/5%.
    Expanded to all damage rather than just physical damage.
  • Fleet Footed (Assassination) now reduces duration of movement impairing effects by 25/50% rather than increasing resist chance.
    This seems to be a common theme among all the changes to all classes: less resist and more reduction in the duration of effects. I think this will be immediately felt by Assassination rogues as this is a core mechanism for their ability to remain on their target without Shadowstep.
  • Gouge is now only 1 rank and causes damage based on attack power.
    The change in damage is bizarre and laughable. Our current highest rank of Gouge does 104 damage. If this is change to something akin to [AP*0.07]+104 damage. The damage will be nice, but no one is trying to reach the top of the DPS meter with Gouge.
  • Kick is now only 1 rank and no longer causes damage.
    Curious that they would chose to scale the damage on Gouge, but remove the damage on Kick.
  • Nerves of Steel (Combat) now reduces the duration of all Stun and Fear effects by 15/30%.
    Like stated above, this change is in likely the response of protests from casters that Rogues are unstoppable.
  • Pick Lock and Disarm Trap no longer require Thieve’s Tools.
    Awesome! Blizzard has granted us one more bag slot. /sigh
  • Premeditation (Subtlety) duration increased to 20 seconds.
    This will be great for starting off on a Mage and for when they Blink away.
  • Riposte (Combat) now slows the target’s melee attacks by 20% instead of disarming them.
    With the addition of Dismantle, I can see them now changing this. Dismantle will disarm a target of weapon, offhand and other equipment (idol/libram?). However, as the ability is still tied to Parry, it is only usable against a melee opponent.
  • Setup (Subtlety) chance to gain a combo point increased to 33/66/100%.
    Definitely better than before. However, with the prevailing opinion that Rogues should resists effects less, this may become less useful.
  • Vanish no longer requires the reagent Flash Powder.
    That’s right. Wrath of the Lich King, the expansion where Rogues get more inventory space. I’m so excited. =P
  • Vile Poisons (Assassination) reduced to 3 ranks, now increases damage of poisons and Envenom by 7/14/20% and increases dispel resistance by 10/20/30%.
    MMO Champion had this down as Eviscerate instead of Envenom, but I’m pretty sure it’s Envenom (and WowHead lists it as this in its tooltip). This is a reduction in the amount of points needed to maximize this talent, but it’s also a 10% reduction in the dispel resistance. =/

Here are some other notable patch notes affecting Rogues from other classes. One of the first things I noticed is the change to the threat mechanics. Rumor has it that the game interface will more display threat more visibly to players. As such it seems that they have removed any ways for people to have lasting buffs or effects to reduce their threat. Blessing of Salvation has been removed and replaced with the strange Hand mechanic and Tranquil Air Totem has been removed without replacement. Warriors in Defensive Stance have gained a slight nerf to their threat.

  • Paladin – Blessing of Salvation renamed Hand of Salvation, now reduces total threat on the target by 2% per second for 10 seconds while also reducing all damage and healing done by 10%. Only one Hand spell can be on the target per paladin at any one time. Now costs 6% of base mana.
    If you let your Paladin use this on you, you should leave the raid.
  • Shaman – Tranquil Air Totem has been removed. (Threat is being addressed by modifications to the base threat of players and/or “baked” into tanking abilities.)
    o_O I’m very interested in seeing how this all shakes out.
  • Shaman – Windfury Totem is now a flat 20% melee haste totem. All ranks have been modified.
    This should be a boost for most Rogues as it will affect both main and off-hand.
  • Shaman – Grace of Air Totem has been removed. (Agility has been rolled over into Strength of Earth Totem)
    So, don’t be a n00b and asked for GoA anymore. Ask for Windfury or Strength of Earth.
  • Warrior – Defensive Stance now increases threat by 45%.
    Currently, Protection Warriors pick up Defiance for an additional 15% more than the 30% they already get from Defensive Stance. 1.3*1.15 = 1.495. So, those Warriors are losing 4.95% threat. So, keep your Vanish for wiping threat. =)

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The Devs Do Listen!

Posted 1 year, 8 months ago at 10:03 am. 3 comments

Patch 2.4.3 was released today and there are two notable changes to Rogues.  The first is the change to Cheat Death which was announced weeks ago.

Cheat Death: This talent has been rebalanced significantly. Killing blows are no longer 100% absorbed. If the Rogue is below 10% health, the killing blow is still completely absorbed; if the Rogue is over 10% health, enough damage will be absorbed to reduce the Rogue’s health down to 10%. For the following 3 seconds, damage is not always reduced by 90%; it is now reduced by a maximum of 90%, depending on how much resilience the Rogue has. The damage reduction will be four times the damage reduction resilience causes against critical strikes.

From everything I’ve read, this won’t affect those Rogues with high Resilience much.  It addresses some of the strange issues people have seen with Cheat Death giving Rogue virtual immunity for 3 seconds.

But today we also see this change to the talent Sinister Calling.

Sinister Calling now increases damage to Backstab and Hemorrhage by 1/2/3/4/5% (down from 2/4/6/8/10%.)

Now, I have both of these talents now.  So, I’m understandably unhappy about being nerfed.  But what is the reasoning behind the change to Sinister Calling?  A 50% reduction in an ability that was affecting one source of damage (a Rogue would most likely use Backstab or Hemorrhage, not both)?  I haven’t looked at my Recount in Arena, but I’m guessing that Hemorrhage is at most 50% of my damage.  So, overall probably a 1-2% reduction in my damage.

So many other factors can contribute this same amount and it’s pretty minor.  But why do I get the feeling this is just a result of the QQ that’s invaded the WoW Rogue forums lately?  Several blue posts responded to the trolling in a manner that seemed to make it sound like Blizzard say it for what it was.  But then there’s this sudden unannounced change.

Moral of the story:  Despite blue posts to the contrary and the locking of threads, if players bitch enough in the official forums sooner or later the nerf bat will come.

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Brutal PvP: Back to Subtlety

Posted 1 year, 8 months ago at 8:31 am. 7 comments

I’ve been taking a break from raiding lately and I’ve been trying some battlegrounds and arena.  At the same time, I switched to a Subtlety build of 20/0/41Shadowstep is very cool.  Cheat Death is as cheesy as it sounds though it usually only gives me a few more seconds of life. And Premeditation is fun, but I often either forget or don’t get a chance to use it.  However, I miss Blade Flurry and Adrenaline Rush and the energy from Combat Potency.

First of all, I want to make no pretensions about my ability in PvP.  I suck.  I’ve joined a 3v3 team with a Arms Warrior and a Holy Paladin.  My role is primarily CC and then DPS.  One of our most challenging matchups at the moment is Mage/Shadowpriest/Rogue.  We’ve come up with some strategies but are still struggling.  But it’s definitely fun and I’m having a great time … except a few small things.

/QQtime

Also, we’ve run into the following situation and let me know how many of you are experiencing the same thing.  We took it easy the first week waiting for some of the more established teams to move up in the ranking and away from the starting 1500-1600 rating.  But now in week three, we are encountering teams that have already reached ratings high enough to buy their Season 4 weapons and are resetting to fight back at the 1500 range to gear their alts, friends, neighbors or those unscrupulous enough to pay someone for their rating.  It’s incredibly frustrating to try to reach 1600 to get your chest while fighting against opponents with Season 4 weapons and shoulders from Season 3.

In addition, on several nights now, we’ve queued up only to find that the arena instance servers are down.  This results in an automatic loss for our team.  And there seems to be no way of determining if this will occur until after it happens.  It’s not big enough to petition, but it is annoying enough to prevent us from playing that night and losing any chance to practice and improve our score.

Finally, I have to say something about arena team names.  WTF.  Srsly.  Apparently the only thing worse than bad guild names are bad arena team names.  If it’s not a crude sexual reference, it’s a gay or racist comment.  I can’t and won’t repeat even one of them here, but every time after I finish playing arena, I’m appalled at the most immature portion of the WoW community.  Blizzard needs to start filtering these by a human being.

And while I’m at it, RP servers should only be in battlegrounds with other RP servers.  I joined a RP server to avoid people named Yourpwner, Xxstunzz and Nohealfou.  So why should I have to experience them every time I play now?

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Alpha 8471 Rogue News

Posted 1 year, 9 months ago at 10:46 am. 5 comments

First, I’d like to state a disclaimer.  I’m not in the alpha.  This information is likely to change and may indeed be false.  I have read other information that leads me to believe that more of our abilities have been changed, but this is the information I have so far. 

I wouldn’t overreact to these additions and changes too much.  It’s all at a very early stage and I’m sure we will see a lot of it radically change.  Overall, the changes seem pretty good, though heavily favoring daggers and survivability, which is great for soloing and PvP.

I do not usually use the “More” tag, but I’m going to start using it on Wrath of the Lich King spoiler information.

Continue Reading…

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Rogues Do It From Behind Video Winners

Posted 1 year, 9 months ago at 10:20 am. 0 comments

Bang it!

Blizzard announced the winners of their L70ETC “Rogues Do It From Behind” video contest.  After watching all three of the grand prize winner videos, I would have to say I enjoyed Naje of Stormreaver’s video the most.  The video has the most interesting visual effects and the editing gives the video energy the other videos seemed to lack.

Which video did you like the most?

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