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Subtle Ways of Subtlety


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#1 Haileaus

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Posted 28 March 2011 - 09:09 PM

Guide should be all ready. Feel free to PM me if you think I left something out.

=Specs and Glyphs=

Spec


These are the talents worth mentioning for most fights. Some might have specific uses in a very small number of encounters. For those you’ll have to look up the specific raid mechanics, which for now cannot be found in this guide.


T15 - Subterfuge is ideal for DPS, though Shadow Focus is close behind.
T30 - No direct DPS increase.
T45 - Leeching Poison may boost DPS if it triggers procs like it did for FotF.
T60 - Preparation is best, but for fights with lots of movement Shadowstep may be better.
T75 - Prey on the Weak when targets are stunnable. Paralytic poison is generally bad unless there is a single stunnable mob that should never move.
T90 – Anticipation is best, but for fights with very high amounts of target swapping or importance on range it could be surpassed.


Glyphs


if the fight has any movement.
if you need the extra duration.
if a fight has adds that you could potentially land the killing blow on.
if you are the only one in the raid able to apply that debuff.

________________________________________



=Combat and Rotation=


Poisons


Instant Poison is now baked in to Deadly Poison. Your utility poison depends on what you need to get done.


Finishers


Relevant Finishers:

Slice and Dice: Increases attack speed by a ton and gives you energy. This is a massive DPS increase and should be up 100% of the time. It is currently unknown whether or not it should be refreshed at 5 CP or with any amount.

Rupture: Deals damage and activates SV. You want this up at all times, especially when there is no Garrote/CT debuff already on the target. Because of how DoTs calculate their effect in MoP and because it is no longer refreshed by Eviscerate, it is not important to get this up during MoS or Tricks.

Eviscerate: Deals damage.

Crimson Tempest (Multiple Targets Only): Deals AoE damage and makes everyone hit bleed. Activates SV. Total damage increase over Eviscerate for two or more targets as long as you are not overwriting the bleed set by the previous CT by much. That said it is an increase to use CT while the previous bleed is up as the bleed activates SV.


Finisher priority:

SnD/Rupture>Evis
Note: It is currently unknown if a Rupture that applies SV is stronger than SnD. Either way it is suggested that stacks of Anticipation are built up to prevent either of these being down for too long.


Combo-Point Generators



Hemo should only be used to keep up its bleed, or if it is impossible to get behind the target.

Without Anticipation: Use BS/Hemo to build CP until you get 4, then let HaT fill in the 5th so you don’t waste any procs. The exception to this is if you are about to energy cap, at as it is generally better to waste CP than energy.

With Anticipation: Same thing really except instead you don’t have to worry about a wasted proc until 5 stacks of Anticipation. More about rotational changes with this talent will be discussed below.


Opening



Open with Garrote. If you have Subterfuge, make sure you use an Ambush at the last possible moment to refresh FW.


Cooldowns



Vanish: Use roughly on-cooldown to refresh FW and MoS. Always wait for FW to be down before using this, as overwriting FW is a major dps loss. The exception is if it has almost no time left before the refresh. It is best to wait for Premeditation to be ready, any time spent waiting is generally irrelevant. To maximize FW effectiveness you want to fit the most eviscerates as possible into the stage without hurting your rotation, so check SnD and Rupture durations accordingly before vanishing.

Shadow Dance: Same rules for when to use as Ambush. Replace backstab/Hemo with ambush. I usually save Prem for after my first finisher to minimize wasted CP. Wait to use your last ambush until just before ShD expires to maximize FW.

Shadow Blades: Do not overlap with FW as the armor-ignoring effect gets diminished to the point where the extra finishers do not make up for it. This is also best used with low CP, as the number of CP-generators used over the duration should be maximized.

Preparation: Unless you can fit more than one into a fight, this should generally be saved for a burn phase, lining up with Lust/Heroism/fakeversions. Basically you use this to get an extra vanish, so follow the vanish rules. Also note that it refreshes the CD on CoS, so utilize that if it means you will get significantly more uptime.


=Stat Weights and Caps=
These are sample stats weights according to Shadowcraft. The current script may require further optimizations which could sway data, but this is the best we have. Note that these are for single target dps only, and that for any fights with multiple targets where Crimson Tempest is part of the rotation then mastery would be more valuable. For your optimal weights it is best to just use the engine yourself. These all assume you have the t14 4-pc bonus.

Tier 14 Normal
[table="head"]Stat | T14 EP
Agility | 3.677
Yellow Hit Rating | 1.441
Haste Rating | 1.255
Crit Rating |1.200
Mastery Rating | 1.172
Expertise Rating | 1.163
White Hit Rating | 0.727

Tier 14 Heroic
[table="head"]Stat | T14 EP
Agility | 3.700
Yellow Hit Rating | 1.517
Haste Rating | 1.311
Crit Rating |1.233
Expertise Rating | 1.224
Mastery Rating | 1.219
White Hit Rating | 0.767

Tier 14 Heroic 2x Upgrade
[table="head"]Stat | T14 EP
Agility | 3.727
Yellow Hit Rating | 1.591
Haste Rating | 1.398
Expertise Rating | 1.285
Mastery Rating | 1.277
Crit Rating |1.272
White Hit Rating | 0.801


________________________________________


=Gearing=
Trinket EPs

All EPs are calculated with t13 BiS values from Shadowcraft, as seen above.

[table="head"]Name | EP
(heroic) | 7419.56
(normal) | 6572.64
(Darkmoon) | 6548.96
(heroic) | 6539.51
(RF) | 5821.58
(heroic) | 5810.75
(normal) | 5794.91
(rep) | 5147.36
(normal) | 5147.36
(RF) | 5135.61
(alchemy, 55s ICD?) | 4946.18
(dungeon) | 4665.15
(dungeon) | 4482.56
(RF) | 4441.28
(dungeon) | 3889.22
(holiday) | 3241.47

________________________________________



=Higher Optimization=


Anticipation Optimization



Anticipation can be used to move finishers from low-damage phases to high-damage phases by keeping high Anticipation stacks when there are no damage increases (buffs/debuffs, most notably FW) and low stacks during increased damage phases.

Before we go into the technique, let's set some things straight:
We will take Anticipation to mean we have a total of 10 CP. We are going to call any buff or debuff that increases your damage significantly "buff". This could be FW, boss mechanics, procs, etc. There are therefore "buffed" and "not buffed" phases of each fight. It is up to you to decide for which buffs you want to apply this strategy to.

Not buffed phases:
Keep Anticipation stacks high, using finishers when you have 9-10 CP. If you are going up to 10 CP make sure that nothing is going to proc a wasted one. This ensures you will always have most of a finisher to unleash during a buffed phase.

Buffed phases:
Use finishers at 5 CP. Obviously don't worry about anything proccing a 6th.

Note:
Don't worry too much about keeping high CP during non-buffed phases. If you need to refresh SnD and Rupture at the same time, it is better to use both and have 0 CP than to clip one or have significant downtime.


Waiting or Clipping Hemo/CT


It can be better to wait to use these abilities even after the bleed has ended as the damage of the bleed is highly dependent on the initial damage of the ability, and thus if you are about to gain FW it may be best to wait. Similarly it can be wise to clip the end of the bleed if it would mean extra initial damage.

________________________________________



=Edits=

10/15/12: Initial post, minor edits to make it prettier.
10/17/12: Added content from previous guide.
11/14/12: Noted new EP on Shadowcraft, though advised that testing may be needed.
12/13/12: Added EP tables based on Shadowcraft for T14, T14 Heroic, and T14 Heroic 2x upgrade.

#2 Pathal

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Posted 24 September 2012 - 11:28 PM

Hidden for Hail's guide. This will not be updated, and may eventually be out of date information.

Spoiler


#3 Rfeann

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 09:36 PM

Here, hopefully, is the >i450 trinket (plus the alchemy trinket) EP list at present, assuming no reforges, procs occur immediately whenever the ICD hits 0, and you have 100% uptime on your target for the duration of the proc. PvP trinkets not included; neither is the upcoming Brewfest trinket.

(heroic): 7419.56
(normal): 6572.64
(Darkmoon): 6548.96
(heroic): 6539.51
(RF): 5821.58
(heroic): 5810.75
(normal): 5794.91
(rep): 5147.36
(normal): 5147.36
(RF): 5135.61
(alchemy): 4956.20
(dungeon): 4665.15
(dungeon): 4482.56
(RF): 4441.28
(dungeon): 3889.22

These are all based on this crappy spreadsheet I threw together last night. Easy to crappily update as EP values are adjusted.

Stat and proc values are based on in-game tooltip notes. Relic of Xuen is the exception (thus the blue text); I couldn't access an in-game tooltip for it, so I'm going off the Wowhead numbers, which may not be accurate.

ICDs are based on tooltip notes in some cases, but usually it's from this Beta Classes thread in the official forums in which Ghostcrawler provided said info.

I've included all three incarnations of the Jade Bandit Figurine that appear in the database, but since it was reportedly a rare raid trash drop in the beta, it may well only have a single (i496) version in the actual game.

#4 Haileaus

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Posted 27 September 2012 - 06:56 PM

Might be worth mentioning that paralytic poison might be actively bad if the mob is stunable since if a mob is moving it generally is supposed to. If it is a pack of a lot of mobs that need to be slowed, stunning random ones will take them out of AoE making them die later anyway.

Combat Readiness may be a dps increase if there is physical periodic AoE that can be soaked with CR up. Deadly Throw could also if there are times when you are at range and will be able to cap CP after using DT. Both of these are very situational though and could just be added to encounter tips rather than talent section.

Anticipation should be the best for DPS on the majority of fights. Should add a part later about its optimal use, specifically stacking up before abilities that give FW in order to get an extra finisher in.

#5 shinwa

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Posted 27 September 2012 - 10:04 PM

I'm debating at the moment the correct use of Shadow Blades with Subtlety, the cool part about SB, other than the one combo point more thingy, our attacks ignores armor on the target, so wouldn't it be kinda of a waste to use under find weakness?

#6 Haileaus

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Posted 27 September 2012 - 11:35 PM

Yes. General consensus is that SB should be used outside of FW when they will not overlap, preferably with some sort of wep or trinket proc. Also this ability is a really good reason that anticipation should be suggested here.

Edit: Also it would be good to have a Hemo refresh in SB since the reduced energy cost means an even greater CP/Energy ratio than other stuff. But that's really minor.

#7 Druss

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 08:20 AM

I notice the recommendation to go for Subterfuge at level 15 as it is "ideal for DPS" but question this given energy limitations and that fact that to obvious alternative (Shadow Focus) is an energy free ambush. I'd be interested to hear the reasoning for the recommendation.

#8 Omanko

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 08:46 AM

My guess would be the chance to get in several Ambushes after using Vanish during the fight.

#9 Haileaus

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 05:33 PM

Suberfuge is mostly good for the increased duration of MoS and FW. It is actually quite critical that something be used at the end of it.

#10 NaturesVoice

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Posted 29 September 2012 - 07:49 PM

I'm interested in the reasoning behind Subterfuge as well.

About Shadow Blades, I've tried many different scenarios with SimC trying to use it outside Find Weakness trying to reach the highest possible uptime on armor ignore effects but in the end I found Shadow Blades to be so powerfull that using it whenever it is off cooldown to be best.

Something else, did anyone notice Shadow Blades adding a combo point to HaT procs as well?

#11 Haileaus

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Posted 29 September 2012 - 08:46 PM

Definitely if using ShB on CD will give an extra use out of it then use it, but on most fights you'll be using it the same number of times throughout the fight regardless.

#12 Synek

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 01:04 AM

Definitely if using ShB on CD will give an extra use out of it then use it, but on most fights you'll be using it the same number of times throughout the fight regardless.


There was a similar debate about using AR with Bloodlust back in Firelands/Dragon Soul; will you lose an application if you postpone AR by up to 40 seconds? Obviously using AR during Bloodlust is better than losing an application of AR, but where do you draw the line? How do you know where the threshold lies? Simply put, you don't.

I don't think you can ever give a definitive right answer here since you never know where the threshold lies. Personally, I would only ever postpone it ~10 seconds or so at most to line it up with something useful.

#13 Omanko

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 02:08 AM

The case you describe is special because it involves Combat. The reduction of cooldown-time granted by Restless Blades is what makes it so hard to estimate the number of uses for things like AR or SB.

Other Rogue specs however don't have this problem. You know exactly how many uses you will get, if you can estimate the length of the fight to within a reasonable margin. Any serious raider should be planning ahead, and consequently know when to use which cooldown. Delaying in this case is perfectly valid, especially if that means aligning with fight-specific mechanics and/or low-HP phases. Some variability remains, of course, but much less so than with Combat.

#14 NaturesVoice

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 02:06 PM

The case you describe is special because it involves Combat. The reduction of cooldown-time granted by Restless Blades is what makes it so hard to estimate the number of uses for things like AR or SB.

Other Rogue specs however don't have this problem. You know exactly how many uses you will get, if you can estimate the length of the fight to within a reasonable margin. Any serious raider should be planning ahead, and consequently know when to use which cooldown. Delaying in this case is perfectly valid, especially if that means aligning with fight-specific mechanics and/or low-HP phases. Some variability remains, of course, but much less so than with Combat.


I think you hit the nail on the head to be honest. SimC assumes bloodlust at the start of the fight and with all procs going of at the start it's logical that using it as soon as possible comes out as the best option. It very much depends on fight length as well. Though I'm not sure if it's crystal clear that Blades should be used outside of Find Weakness. With the extra combo points you can Eviscerate more which will hit harder during Find Weakness.

#15 Synek

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 04:35 PM

The case you describe is special because it involves Combat. The reduction of cooldown-time granted by Restless Blades is what makes it so hard to estimate the number of uses for things like AR or SB.

Other Rogue specs however don't have this problem. You know exactly how many uses you will get, if you can estimate the length of the fight to within a reasonable margin. Any serious raider should be planning ahead, and consequently know when to use which cooldown. Delaying in this case is perfectly valid, especially if that means aligning with fight-specific mechanics and/or low-HP phases. Some variability remains, of course, but much less so than with Combat.


During farm you may be able to plan ahead like that, but not during progress (which is the only time DPS matters for more than WoL ranks). I'd like to think that people who read this site want to maximize DPS for more than just WoL ranks during farm, so you shouldn't cater to that kind of person in my opinion.

I agree that you can most likely delay it somewhat to make the most use out of it (ie. 10 seconds or so so that it doesn't overlap with Find Weakness too much), but I would never delay it too much unless I know how long the fight is to within 10-20 seconds. Sadly, you don't know how long the fight will be when it matters (read: progress), so I don't think it's right give people a definitive answer like that.

Of course if you do know how long a fight/attempt will be to within a reasonable margin, then feel free to figure out how much extra time you have to delay the cooldown before losing an application.

#16 Omanko

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 04:59 PM

You can actually estimate a fight's progression fairly quickly, even during progress. You may not be able to pinpoint it to withing 10 seconds, but with a 3 minute cooldown, you also don't need to be that accurate. Maybe it's just me, but even when we chain-wiped on a progression boss, I sure knew it would only take X more minutes until it's dead. Accommodating for such lengths can be done.

That being said, you are of course correct that it can be difficult in certain situations. If, say, a boss fight divides into "cooldown segments" very tightly, small variations can make or break an extra use. But then again, even using it on cooldown can't always save you from that.

In fact, I think "just use it on CD to be safe" is more of a blanket statement than "think about the flow of the fight beforehand". There are no easy, one-statement solutions for these things, and I'm certainly not trying to provide one. I'm merely illustrating the thoughts behind the decision-making process, but in the end it is up to each individual to make their own.

#17 Ptitcitron

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 12:12 PM

About the gemming:

If the EP evaluation for sub is not too wrong, there is no reason to think that "Secondary stat gems are immensely stronger now".
It is the case for Combat where 2 haste\hit\exp > 1 agi
And also for Assassination where 2 hit > 1 agi
But Subtlety seems to be the exception: 1 agi > 2 of any secondary stat (even yellow hit).

#18 Verain

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 04:30 PM

1)- I don't understand how Subterfuge is stronger than Shadow Focus.
My assumed used of Subterfuge is something like:
You pool energy until nearly max, then vanish. You then use an opener (either garrote or ambush). You then wait until the buff is right about to fall off three seconds after, then use another opener.

Is that correct? The gain here is up to 3 seconds of find weakness. Note that ambush used here would cost 60 energy.

Shadow Focus is:
Your ambush is free, saving you 60 energy

Is subterfuge just simming higher? This is very non-intuitive for me, normally three seconds of find weakness wouldn't be worth all that energy.

2)- By the EP values in the post, you still want to gem primarily agility. A yellow socket, for instance, could be 120 Agi for 440 EP, or it could be an orange socket for 378 EP, because the 120 haste is multiplied by the much smaller haste number. Putting a yellow into that would make it 315, even less. So the comparison would have to incorporate socket bonuses, as it always has. I agree that the secondary stat gems are immensely stronger than they USED to be, but as you wrote it it implies that they are stronger than the primary ones- not generally the case.

#19 Pathal

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 05:21 PM

We have Subterfuge beating Shadow Focus by a small amount. Like, a tiny amount in a comparison of small DPS gains. If you find you're unable to achieve 2.5s of extra FW and MoS uptime per Vanish, then Shadow Focus would most assuradely be better for you. That said, maybe the assumptions built up around it are wrong / poor, but this one might not be as accurate as it could be until we can model openers (but if I were to guess, I'd say that would sway things towards Subterfuge).

#20 Haileaus

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 11:22 PM

What is your opening sequence for Subterfuge? What about with ShF? What have you tried? Are you assuming 0 CP before the fight?




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