And after a week's worth of articles we come down to the last of the character classes, but certainly not the least. The stealthy and dangerous Rogue who hides in shadow, drenches his blades in poison yet still works for the good guys. A Rogue was the first DPS class I had ever rolled and after leveling a tank and a healer I could see why DPS were so popular. No worrying about keeping agro or quick heals… you find opponent, stab, repeat until dead.
So what will World of Warcraft: Legion have in store for the three specs of this deadly class? Like the Hunters, the line between the specs has been blurred. The developers decided to make some bold moves (their own words) and more clearly define what makes Subtlety, Assassination and Combat. So each spec is having their fantasy and game play amplified to better differentiate them.
With Assassination, this becomes the only spec to use poisons and bleeds, meaning this Rogue is more about the damage over time than the quick bursts. Venomous Wounds now triggers from a combination of poisons and bleeds and Seal Fate can be triggered from either hand doing Mutilate. Your Mastery, Potent Poisons increases your damage by up to 70% and you can get a passive talent called Elaborate Planning that increases damage done by your finishing moves by 20% for 4 seconds.
If they are losing poisons and bleeds, what is the main focus of Subtlety you might ask? Why stealth of course. The new version of Shadow Dance allows you to weave in and out of stealth rotationally. Shadowstrike increase mobility when attacking from stealth and you gain the ability Nightblade which applies Shadow damage over time. Your Mastery, Executioner, increases the damage from your finishing move by up to 55% and a new talent you can choose is Relentless Strike, a passive talent that gives you +40 energy when you go into Stealth.
Assassination is about DoTs, poisons and bleeds while Subtlety is about stealth… so what is Combat? Gone. That's right. No more Combat Rogues. Nice knowing you, have a nice day. What is in their place? Outlaw Rogues… these are the scoundrels of Azeroth. The swordmaster who is always on the bleeding edge of the law and the light. You'll have abilities like Saber Strike and Pistol Shot. Stealth will be de-emphasized with your only opening move left being Ambush. This is the Rogue that stands toe-to-toe with the enemy instead of skulking around. And you will retain some favorite Combat abilities like Adrenalin Rush and Blade Furry. The Pistol Shot is pretty cool, you draw a concealed pistol and fire, dealing moderate damage and reducing movement speed by 50%. Now dress up like a pirate and you'll be all set.
The changes here for the Rogues, like the Hunter, are pretty drastic. You'll have to figure out what was the best part of playing your Rogue in the past and choose your spec based on that. You like being stealthy, go Subtlety. You like poisons and bleeds, Assassination is for you. But if you want to be a swashbuckling scoundrel… say hello to Outlaw.
For more information on the proposed changes to Rogues, check out this write up by Blizzard.