World of Warcraft - Rogue FAQ by Relle email@example.com Table of Contents 1. Introduction 2. Updates 3. Why a Rogue? 4. Which Race? 5. What about Weapons? 5a. Damage vs. DPS 6. Skills 6a. Finish Them in Style! 7. The Art of Combat 8. Sample Talent Builds 9. Where to Quest 9a. Alliance 9b. Horde 10. Professions 11. Lockpicking 12. Poison 13. Frequently Asked Questions 14. Acknowledgements 15. Copyright Info =============================================================================== 1. Introduction =============================================================================== Eh...while waiting for auctions to run out and various other inactive activities in Ironforge, I have thus created this FAQ to help along aspiring rogues in their journey to make something of themselves. Let me start off by saying that I'm far too addicted to World of Warcraft right now, so even though this FAQ is about said evil MMORPG, updates will likely be sporadic at best. With that said, read on, and enjoy. Two notes: One, a lot of what's written in this guide is my opinion about rogues. Bear in mind not all rogues should be the same, and since it's an RPG, you're certainly free to play yours however you like. That said, don't bug me if you disagree with anything that's an opinion. And secondly... If there is any information that is fraudulent, incorrect or slightly off, or if I've forgotten to credit anyone for their work, please send me an e-mail and I'll make the proper corrections where applicable. =============================================================================== 2. Updates =============================================================================== 1.00 - Just started. This guide is complete in terms of the content I wanted to put out when I started, but odds are I'll be adding to it over time. I'm hoping to find some ASCII art I can use. 1.02 - Added a section on poisons, fixed up some stuff. What I'd like to do is put in PVP strategies to use against each particular class, but I'll need to get in more duels for that. 1.03 - Some quick updates. Still working on PVP data. 1.04 - More quick updates. Added a proper FAQ. I want to go through the talents and write up some data on them, but that's for later. 1.06 - Corrections, changes, all manner of things. Still want to do the talents, but later. 1.07 - More manner of changes and corrections. 1.08 - Slight correction. I'm working on Baten Kaitos, so this FAQ will have to wait for the talent data. 1.10 - Updated some stuff in light of the recent 1.4 patch. 1.12 - Wrote up a Seal Fate build and modified my assassination/subtlety build. 1.15 - Redid the 'where to level' section. =============================================================================== 3. Why a Rogue? =============================================================================== Many reasons. I chose my rogue because I don't like straight-up melee fighters (warriors and paladins), hunters remind me too much of the D&D-style rangers, whom I hate, and spellcaster classes have always been more complicated than I care to deal with. Besides, I'm a sneaky guy by nature. Ask anyone. They'll say they never saw me. ;) Let me just say up front that if your typical playing style is to rush up and beat on the enemy until he/she/it is dead, a rogue is not for you. Sorry, but it'll be more trouble than it's worth. You want a warrior or paladin, but not a stealthy rogue. A rogue is more subtle, more diverse. A rogue can sneak up to an enemy, stun him/her/it for several seconds, deal lots of damage, then fade into the shadows as if he/she/it were never there. A rogue is the shadows. Keep that in mind. Anyway, there are many different types of rogues, but they all have similar traits. Advantages ｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯ * Can sneak into areas others can't. * Has the highest DPS of any melee class, rivaling only the mage class. * High dodge and critical strike chances. * Can handle melee much better than spellcasting classes. * Exemplory 1v1 capabilities. * Uses Energy instead of Mana, which powers combo points. * Open your own lockboxes! * Mage killers. You show a rogue a mage in PVP, that mage is an example of impending death. * They are l33t ninja. 'nuff said. Disadvantages ｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯ * Fragile. Rogues wear leather armor throughout the game. Hunters get mail armor at level 40, warriors and paladins receive plate, but you're stuck with leather. * Somewhat limited weapon selection. Two-handed weapons are out of your range. * Can't handle groups very well. A rogue is meant for 1v1 combat, not tanking a bunch of monsters. Leave that to the warrior or paladin. * You'll deal less damage per strike than other classes. However, a high DPS makes up for this. * Too many rogues. Hard to get in end-game instance groups because of this. =============================================================================== 4. Which Race? =============================================================================== This is something of a silly question. It really doesn't matter which race you choose for any class (unless you want to be a paladin or shaman...) The only race that cannot be a rogue are the Taurens, and if you've heard what they say when you try looting a corpse that isn't yours ("That would be stealing!") you'll understand why. Lousy do-gooders. While it doesn't matter which race in particular, there are two with some advantages. Night Elves get a 1% dodge bonus (greater than you think) along with the Shadowmeld racial trait. Undead have a racial trait that makes warlocks crap their robes: Will of the Forsaken. More on that later. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Human ｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯ Perception (Active) - Activate to increase stealth detection radius by 10 yards. Lasts 20 seconds. 3 minute cooldown. The Human Spirit (Passive) - Increase Spirit by 5%. Diplomacy (Passive) - 10% bonus to faction point gain. Sword Specialization (Passive - Humans get +5 to Sword skill. Mace Specialization (Passive) - Humans get +5 to Mace skill. Night Elf ｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯ Shadowmeld (Active) - Activate while immobile and out of combat to enter stealth mode. Lasts until canceled. No cooldown. Quickness (Passive) - Dodge chance increased by 1% Wisp Spirit (Passive) - Become a wisp when dead with movement speed increase of 50% (25% faster than a normal ghost). Nature Resistance (Passive) - All Night Elves get +10 Nature Resistance Dwarf ｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯ Stoneform (Active) - Activate to gain immunity to poison, disease, and bleed plus 5% AC bonus. Lasts 20 seconds. 3 minute cooldown. Gun Specialization (Passive) - Dwarves get +5 to Gun Skill Frost Resistance (Passive) - All Dwarves get +10 Cold Resistance Treasure Finding (Passive) - Activate to see treasure chests on mini map. Lasts until canceled. No cooldown. Gnome ｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯ Escape Artist (Active) - Activate to break out of a Root or Snare effect. 1.5 second cast. 1 minute cooldown. Expansive Mind (Passive) - Increase Intelligence by 5%. Arcane Resistance (Passive) - All Gnomes get +10 Arcane Resistance. Technologist (Passive) - 15 skill bonus to Engineering. Orc ｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯ Blood Fury (Active) - Activate to increase Strength by 25% but take 5% health loss every 3 seconds. Lasts 20 seconds. 2 min cooldown. Hardiness (Passive) - 25% resistance to stun and knockout effects. Command (Passive) - Pet melee damage increased by 5%. Axe Specialization (Passive) - Orcs get +5 to Axe skill. Undead ｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯ Will of the Forsaken (Active) - Activate to become immune to fear, sleep, and charm effects. Lasts 20 sec. 3 min cooldown. Cannibalize (Active) - Increase health regeneration by 200% while consuming a corpse. Lasts 15 seconds. 3 minute cooldown. Underwater Breathing (Passive) - Underwater breath increased by 4x. Shadow Resistance (Passive) - All Undead get +10 Shadow Resistance. Troll ｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯ Berserking (Active) - Activate when "Wounded" to increase melee and spellcasting speed by 25%. Lasts 20 seconds. 2 minute cooldown. Regeneration (Passive) - 10% health regen bonus, 10% active in combat. Beast Slaying (Passive) - 5% damage bonus to Beasts. Throwing Weapon Specialization (Passive) - +5 to Throwing Weapon skill. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Now then, this is why you should ignore racial traits and just pick the race you like best. I know I spent a lot of time sorting out those traits just to tell you that, but it's true. Most of the racial traits in general don't compliment a rogue. About the only truly useful traits are the undead's Will of the Forsaken, which will make you immune to Fear (a warlock's best defense against a rogue) and their increased underwater breathing, especially for some quests. Gnomes are more suited to being mages, but they do have one advantage: their size. Their small stature makes them difficult for other players to target manually, giving you an advantage in PVP. Of course, if you just plan on doing PVE (player versus enemy, or in other words, just killing normal monsters) then this won't matter one bit. In short, pick the race you like the most, and don't let anyone tell you it was a bad choice. =============================================================================== 5. What About Weapons? =============================================================================== For a rogue, your dagger is your friend. There are other options, but for the first ten (or twenty) levels, daggers will help you along more than you know. Throwing knives give you an edge over paladins, who have to rush in to attack an enemy, and spellcasters, who have to exhaust mana to pull enemies. You can later train in bows, but don't bother till level 36, when bows start giving off stat bonuses. Before then, throwing knives are cheaper to maintain and produce the same effect. However, once you hit 36 you should start shopping for a bow. Throwing knives are cheap, yes, but your ranged attack with a bow is increased depending on your agility. Since any good rogue will have lots of agility by level 36, your ranged attack will likely be somewhere in the neighborhood of 125+ depending on your bow and agility. Much better than throwing knives, which tend to top out at around 30-40 damage per shot. At level 10, rogues can buy a skill called Dual Wield. This lets them equip a melee weapon in each hand, increasing the damage they deal. There are certain and significant disadvantages to this. For one, the damage you deal with your off-hand weapon will be reduced by 50%. For another, you will take a knock to your to-hit percentage for your weapons, meaning you'll miss more often. However, these are greatly outweighed by the long-term advantages. No matter what kind of rogue you plan on becoming, you will want and need Dual Wield. Simple as that. As for melee weapons, you can later train in one-handed swords and maces which, depending on your preference, can open up certain possibilities. Some people like to use dual swords or maces (or a mix of the two) but they're only hurting themselves. As I said before, the point of the rogue is not to rush up and beat on people, but to be a little more subtle, have a little more style. Having anything but a dagger equipped in your main hand disables a number of rogue skills that would otherwise be useful. Now, there are macros out there that let you keep a dagger equipped in the main hand while in stealth, then switch to a sword/mace after using ambush, but I'm a fan of dual daggers myself. Personal preference. Matter of opinion. Stop bugging me about this. There is a significant advantage to dual-wielding daggers, and that is poisons. Instant Poison, for example, has a 20% base chance of being inflicted on an enemy, and when it's inflicted, it deals a certain amount of damage in addition to your weapon damage. Now imagine a rogue with twin daggers, both coated with Instant Poison, swinging away at you with the speed of a dervish. Now imagine you're the rogue. Fun, huh? If you're wondering on what to equip yourself with, the real answer is to just use what you like. If you're looking for the best setup, a dagger and sword early in the game will help. Later on, you'll be able to find rare (blue) daggers that deal nearly as much (or in some cases, more) damage than swords of the same level, and that's when you should focus on either finding or buying those daggers so you can more effectively deal out poisons. If you're intent on doing both PVP and PVE, simply keep a pair of daggers in your inventory along with whatever other weapon(s) you use. Equip the daggers for PVP and equip whatever else for normal monsters. Simple, effective. A quick word on poisons. There are many different types, for certain situations. Crippling poison reduces an enemy's movement speed and is killer in duels. Stop that ugly shaman or hunter from running and pelting you with arrows/spells from afar, and let your blades do the talking. Fighting a spellcaster? Use Mind-numbing poison and wait just before his spell activates, then use Kick and watch him cry. Remember, you're a rogue, and that means never having to say you're sorry. Now then, you can train in bows in Darnassus, and swords, maces and crossbows in Stormwind City if you're on the side of the Alliance. If you're of the Horde, you'll want to hit Orgrimmar or the Undercity for your training needs. The quest for poisons first begins at level 20, but I would recommend not doing it for a few levels due to what's involved with it. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 5a. Damage vs. DPS ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Decided to stick this section in after receiving an e-mail with a rather detailed (and long) bit on weapon choices. Quite often throughout the game you'll be presented with weapon choices. Some are strong, some are fast, and some are just plain weird. One question I'm asked with some frequency is whether base damage or DPS (damage per second) is a better route to take, and which type of weapon should go in which hand. Well, here's the answer. Before going into specifics, if you're trying to determine which weapon goes in your main hand and which goes in the off-hand, the weapon with the highest base damage always goes in the main hand. This weapon is the one that will be used for Sinister Strike, Ambush, and all your other damage-dealing moves. The weapon in your off-hand should have either high damage to make up for the 50% hit, or high speed and DPS. High-damage weapons are often slower. If you're using daggers, they can have speeds up to and greater than 2.00, and if you're using swords, expect the speed to be much higher. Why would you use such a cumbersome weapon, you may ask? Higher damage on Sinister Strike, Ambush and other moves. If you're not going to be using poisons, sacrificing a little speed for damage will help. For ranged weapons like bows, the higher the damage, the better. Forget DPS, ranged weapons are pulling tools, not your main armament. You want to bring the enemy out of the pack and give him a reason to not like you rather than pelt him with arrows and/or bullets. Other than that, just make sure your main hand is equipped with a high damage- dealer and the off-hand has something nice as well. =============================================================================== 6. Skills =============================================================================== A word on skills. Certain skills are essential. Some can be replaced for others. Some are just plain worthless. For example, Sinister Strike is essential for any and every rogue. It will be your main damage-dealer all throughout your rogue career. Backstab is later replaced by Ambush in PVE, then replaces Ambush for PVP purposes. Expose Armor is worthless. Don't bother with it. I'll try to give an accurate assessment of each skill's usefulness, though I've since developed certain feelings for particular skills and I'm loathe to change my mind on them. Skill Type Requirement(s) Usefulness ｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯｯ Sinister Strike Combat N/A Essential! Eviscerate Assassination N/A Essential! Backstab Combat Level 4 Varies Pick Pocket Subtlety Level 4 Limited Gouge Combat Level 6 Varies Evasion Combat Level 8 Essential! Sap Subtlety Level 10 Limited Dual Wield Dual Wield Level 10 Essential! Sprint Combat Level 10 Escape method Slice and Dice Assassination Level 10 Limited Kick Combat Level 12 Piss off mages! Expose Armor Assassination Level 14 Useless Garrote Assassination Level 14 Limited Pick Lock Lockpicking Level 16 Essential! Feint Combat Level 16 Limited Ambush Assassination Level 18 Stealthy damage Parry Defense Level 18 Just take it. Poisons Poison Level 20 Varies Rupture Assassination Level 20 Limited Distract Subtlety Level 22 Limited Vanish Subtlety Level 22 Essential! Detect Traps Subtlety Level 24 Varies Cheap Shot Assassination Level 26 Essential! Kidney Shot Assassination Level 30 Limited Disarm Trap Subtlety Level 30 Varies Blind Subtlety Level 34 PVP Safe Fall Subtlety Level 40 Very useful And now, into the details of the abilities. Not all, but most. Backstab - As I said, this is replaced by Ambush later as an opening move, and usable in PVP in higher levels. You have to be behind your opponent, so it doesn't work on regular monsters unless you gouge first. In PVP, you can actually circle-strafe another person and be presented with their backside several times if you're good. If you're using swords, Sinister Strike is your bread and butter, but if you've got daggers, Backstab will provide the most damage. Blind - This is a funny ability. Try it in PVP and watch your opponent stumble around trying to find you in the dark. Also a good escape move, it will make the enemy wander and give you time to get away. Can also help with crowd control in both PVP and PVE, but against monsters, they tend to wander into another group and pull even more aggro, so don't get used to it. Cheap Shot - The replacement for Ambush and Backstab. It does no damage, but it stuns the target for four seconds, giving you time to beat on them freely. Not only that, but it gives you two combo points instead of the usual one, which can be increased to three points with talents. A very useful ability. However, if you're in a group with another rogue, keep in mind that the effects of Cheap Shot DO NOT STACK! Meaning, if your buddy rogue has used Cheap Shot and you're moving in, you'll have to use Ambush. Even if you wait till his Cheap Shot wears off, yours will only momentarily stun the enemy rather than for the full four seconds. If you're in a group with another rogue, determine early on who will use Cheap Shot and who uses Ambush. Detect/Disarm Traps - Very, very situational, but the group will thank you for it later on. This is primarily applicable later in the game when some chests are trapped and you'll have to remove them in order to get the treasure without being killed. Also useful for disarming traps set by Hunters. Distract - This is a very situational move, but it can help. This will turn an enemy's attention elsewhere, thereby presenting to you their welcoming backs for pickpocketing, ambushing, or whatever else you'd like to do to them. It freezes them in place momentarily as well, giving you an opportunity to rob or attack any wandering enemies. Evasion - This thing adds 50% to your dodge rating. Even a low-level rogue can suddenly have a 60-70% dodge rating with this. Higher-level rogues can hit 80%. That's an 80% chance of dodging hits for fifteen seconds, which should be plenty of time to lay in some hits of your own. Feint - Only useful in groups. No real point if you're fighting by your lonesome, and has zero use in PVP. It's mostly only effective at higher levels, and it can still be ineffective depending on how much damage the rest of your group is laying down. Still, it's the best way to take yourself out of the enemy's sights. Garrote - This is an alternative to Backstab or Ambush, but not always the best option. It deals greater damage than either of the two, but it does so over time. In mid- to end-game instances you'll come across bosses that can't be stunned by Cheap Shot and other moves, in which case Garrote will do its job nicely. Gouge - Used for a variety of purposes, both as an escape move and to allow you to get in a quick backstab after you've engaged the enemy. In the end-game, its primary use is in duels. In group PVP, very few people actually stop and check to see whether or not someone is stunned (those who do get creamed anyway) so it's pointless to gouge someone when there's half a dozen mages running around nuking the crap out of everything. In group PVE, there are better stunning methods than this, and better ways to get away from aggro. Kick - Against any and all spellcasters, this is a godsend. This nifty ability lets you disrupt any spell being cast for several seconds, and it deals a little bit of damage to boot. You don't really need to buy higher levels of this skill right away, since the damage it does is negligible. Parry - The only thing this does is give you a better chance at blocking an enemy's attacks. However, it's a one-time cost, so it's worth the relatively small amount of money. Pick Lock - Essential. Not only can you pick the locks on doors in the Scarlet Monestary (thereby negating the need to find the proper key) you'll always be in demand to open other people's lockboxes. A rogue with 300 lockpicking can also open the doors to Stratholme, Scholomance, Dire Maul and the doors in Blackrock Depths (however, some parts in that instance require the key), not to mention being able to open any given chest. Pickpocket - You can't pick the pockets of other players, but this skill is needed for some rogue quests, and you can make a lot of money by picking the pockets of humanoid NPCs, not to mention pick up lockboxes of various sizes. Plus if you're in a group, the money and items you snatch from pickpocketing is yours to keep. It isn't shared with the rest of the group. Poisons - You have to buy ranks in the various poisons as your skill increases, but I'm lumping the whole thing together here. Poisons can be a great help in PVE and PVP, but the chance of them activating is low, so keep that in mind. The cost of ingredients is actually very low, though you have to buy a ton of them early on to get your skill up to respectable levels. You can survive without poisons, but for the rogue who likes to take chances, they're quite handy. Safe Fall - As the description says, this reduces the damage taken by falling. Useful, yes, but don't expect to survive a skydive off Teldrassil. Sap - This move's usefulness is limited, yes, but very effective in the right situation. This is a stealth version of Gouge and works for a lot longer. It can only be used on humanoids, limiting its effectiveness, but it's very helpful in places where said humanoids like to walk around in gangs. Remember that a rogue is a 1v1 fighter, not a class that can tank groups. Sap one, then pull the other away. By the time the sap (ha) regains consciousness, his buddy is already dead, and you've put a knife in his back. Sprint - This is a rogue's primary method of escaping a bad situation. Also nice for catching up to fleeing enemies, or reducing chilling or slowing effects. Vanish - This is another essential skill, and it's multi-talented as well. It works as an escape skill, letting you go straight into stealth mode while in combat. Once the Vanish runs down, you remain in regular stealth, so you can just sneak away safely. Not only that, but this skill breaks movement-impairing effects like Frost Nova, which means those mages in PVP need to think of another way of dealing with you. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 6a. Finish Them in Style! ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I decided to put this section in after playing around with a few of the finishing moves and imagining a few situations in PVP where they might be useful. So, here's a rundown of why Blizzard put anything besides Eviscerate in the game. Expose Armor - Not worth it. If you're fighting a warrior or other high-armor opponent, Rupture will simply deal damage rather than lowering their 5000+ armor rating by what they would consider a paltry amount. Not useful in groups either, warriors should be the ones reducing armor so they hold the aggro, not you. In other words, NEVER use Expose Armor in groups, you will hurt the warrior's ability to hold aggro and get your damn self killed. Kidney Punch - Quite simply, a stun move. There are certain advantages to this move, the first and foremost being that it lets you beat on monsters while they have to sit there and take it for 5-6 seconds. It has a rather high cooldown rate compared to other finishing moves, but that can be reduced with talents. More effective in groups than Gouge, since the stun from Kidney Punch isn't broken by damage. Also exceedingly useful against spellcasters. Takes the magic right out of them. Rupture - This particular move can't compare to a Cold Blood/Eviscerate combo in terms of damage, but it's rather handy outside of PVP against instance bosses and other tough elites. It tends to hold its own in damage with Eviscerate, but once you get Cold Blood, it's not as useful. In PVP, it can be used against warriors or anyone else to disrupt the use of bandages if they get away from you for a moment. For end-game raids, most bosses will take more damage over time from a full combo-ed Rupture than Eviscerate due to their armor value. If they don't bleed, then use something else. Slice and Dice - Put simply, this finishing move is meant for the rogue who uses poisons. If you don't use poisons, an increase in your attack speed means nothing compared to the damage you could do with other moves. However, in PVP, more attacks means more chances to apply poison to your victims, and thus Slice and Dice helps quite a bit in that aspect. Otherwise, it's a waste of your combo points. =============================================================================== 7. The Art of Combat =============================================================================== This section is here to give you a general idea of how combat should work as a rogue. Bear in mind this is not a section for PVP strategies, but rather PVE. In other words, it's here for the beginner rogue who's wondering why he keeps dying. This bit's for you, little buddy. First of all, throwing daggers will help you a lot early in the game. As I said earlier, bows aren't worth the training price (and subsequent costs) until level 36, when they start giving agility bonuses simply by being equipped. Early on, your low level will draw aggro (make monsters aggressive) more easily, thereby forcing you into combat in unintended situations. Throwing daggers brings the monster to you, with the distinct exception of any and all spellcasters. These are the ones you should watch out for early on, because Blizzard gave them seemingly infinite range, and their spells hurt. The blue mana bar that appears under their health when you click on them (or lack thereof) will tell you who's a spellcaster and who's a plodhopper. Before you go all gung-ho on a monster, take a moment and look around. Check and see if there are any wandering critters nearby who might join in on your little rumble before drawing the initial aggro. Because of stealth, you have more time and opportunity than other classes to assess the situation and determine whether or not you're about to be ambushed. Early on stealth will likely be your only method of getting through some situations and quests without a group, but don't get overconfident. Whether or not you're found out is determined by several factors: first and foremost, your level versus the level of the monster. Secondly, how close you are to them. Third, whether or not you're behind them. Regardless of your level, you won't be found out if you sneak up behind an enemy, but circle around to the front and you take your life in your hands. Be very aware of what drops you out of stealth. Searching a corpse, examining an item, opening a chest and more will all drop you out of stealth and give any nearby monsters an opportunity to attack you. Knowing when you are and are not vulnerable will keep you alive. Remember that you are a rogue. Keep that first and foremost in your mind. To that effect, never charge into a group of enemies, or have some grandiose notion that you can win should two or three other monsters suddenly decide to join your current battle. The warrior or paladin can do such things, but you have stealth and Sprint for a reason. He who fights and runs away lives to fight another day, and whatnot. Good luck. =============================================================================== 8. Sample Talent Builds =============================================================================== First and foremost, you should go here: http://wowvault.ign.com/View.php?view=Talents.View This is IGN's talent builder. There are others out there, but I like this one. It will let you customize your rogue talents and basically plan for the future. Believe me when I say you want to be sure what you want early on, because it's very, very expensive to reset your talents. If you make a mistake or decide you don't like your current build, it costs 1g to reset everything the first time, 5g the next, then an additional 5g (10g, 15g, 20g, etc.) up to 50g, where the price sits...stealing your money. Anyway, I have a couple sample talent builds you can try, and they're mostly based off of other people's builds. This first one, the standard 23/2/26, was originally constructed by someone else, but I don't remember his/her name (so if anyone knows, tell me so I can give credit!) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Assassination Talents (23 points) Improved Eviscerate - 3/3 points Increases the damage done by your Eviscerate ability by 15%. Malice - 5/5 points Increases your critical strike chance by 5%. Ruthlessness - 3/3 points Gives your finishing moves a 60% chance to add a combo point to your target. Murder - 1/2 point Increases your chance to hit while using your Sap, Ambush, Garrote, or Cheap Shot abilities by 3%. Relentless Strikes - 1/1 point Your finishing moves have a 20% chance per combo point to restore 25 energy. Lethality - 5/5 points Increases the critical strike damage bonus of your Sinister Strike, Gouge, Backstab, Ambush, Ghostly Strike, or Hemorrhage ability by 30%. Improved Instant Poison - 4/5 points Increases the chance to apply Instant Poison to your target by 8%. Cold Blood - 1/1 point When activated, increases the critical strike chance of your next Sinister Strike, Backstab, Ambush, or Eviscerate by 100%. Combat Talents (2 points) Improved Sinister Strike - 2/2 points Reduces the Energy cost of your Sinister Strike ability by 5 Energy. Subtlety Talents (26 points) Camouflage - 5/5 points Increases your speed while stealthed by 15%. Master of Deception - 4/5 points Reduces the chance enemies have to detect you while in Stealth mode. More effective than Master of Deception (Rank 3) Elusiveness - 5/5 points Reduces the cooldown of your Evasion, Vanish, and Blind abilities by 1.3 minutes. Ghostly Strike - 1/1 point A strike that deals 125% weapon damage and increases your chance to dodge by 15% for 7 seconds. Awards 1 combo point. Initiative - 5/5 points Gives you a 75% chance to add an additional combo point to your target when using your Ambush, Garrote, or Cheap Shot ability. Improved Sap - 3/3 points Adds a 90% chance to return to stealth mode after using your Sap ability. Improved Cheap Shot - 2/2 points Reduces the Energy cost of your Cheap Shot ability by 20. Preparation - 1/1 point When activated, this ability immediately finishes the cooldown on your other Rogue abilities. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- This next build is my own modification of the above, and it trims away certain talents such as Murder and Ghostly Strike, though Ghostly Strike may make a comeback depending on how many people e-mail me telling me I'm missing out on something spectacular. Or it might not. Anyway, this build is meant as a sort of hybrid. It's quite good in PVE, and works very well in PVP, even without the points in Seal Fate everyone seems to love. To be frank, I can see the appeal, but I don't like losing so many points from the Subtlety tree. Too many rogues underestimate the talents in that tree. My opinion entirely. For PVP purposes this can be used in group PVP, but it excels mostly in duels thanks to Preparation. It helps immensely to be able to vanish twice in quick succession, especially against mages and other casters. Assassination Talents (23 points) Improved Eviscerate - 3/3 points Increases the damage done by your Eviscerate ability by 15%. Malice - 5/5 points Increases your critical strike chance by 5%. Ruthlessness - 3/3 points Gives your finishing moves a 60% chance to add a combo point to your target. Murder - 1/2 point Increases your chance to hit while using your Sap, Ambush, Garrote, or Cheap Shot abilities by 3%. Relentless Strikes - 1/1 point Your finishing moves have a 20% chance per combo point to restore 25 energy. Lethality - 5/5 points Increases the critical strike damage bonus of your Sinister Strike, Gouge, Backstab, Ambush, Ghostly Strike, or Hemorrhage ability by 30%. Improved Instant Poison - 2/5 points Increases the chance to apply Instant Poison to your target by 4%. Cold Blood - 1/1 point When activated, increases the critical strike chance of your next Sinister Strike, Backstab, Ambush, or Eviscerate by 100%. Combat Talents (5 points) Improved Gouge - 3/3 points Increases the effect duration of your Gouge ability by 1.5 seconds. Improved Sinister Strike - 2/2 points Reduces the Energy cost of your Sinister Strike ability by 5 Energy. Subtlety Talents (25 points) Camouflage - 5/5 points Increases your speed while stealthed by 15%. Elusiveness - 4/5 points Reduces the cooldown of your Evasion, Vanish, and Blind abilities by 1 minute. Opportunity - 5/5 points Increases the damage dealt when striking from behind with your Backstab, Garrote, or Ambush abilities by 20%. Initiative - 5/5 points Gives you a 75% chance to add an additional combo point to your target when using your Ambush, Garrote, or Cheap Shot ability. Improved Sap - 3/3 points Adds a 90% chance to return to stealth mode after using your Sap ability. Improved Cheap Shot - 2/2 points Reduces the Energy cost of your Cheap Shot ability by 20. Preparation - 1/1 point When activated, this ability immediately finishes the cooldown on your other Rogue abilities. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a Seal Fate build with my preferred Subtlety talents. Adjust as needed for what you like in the Assassination tree. It's more of a PVP build due to the lack of Improved Sap for the end-game instances, but also useable in PVE, just less crowd control. The lack of Preparation is offset somewhat by the extra point in Elusiveness. Not as good in duels since Preparation is sacrificed, but useful in group PVP thanks to the extra combo points provided by Seal Fate. Requires a high critical chance to be fully effective. To be frank, I don't like this build. I'm of the opinion that Seal Fate is an overrated talent that isn't worth the points it takes to get it, and was made popular initially by the fact that it was bugged in earlier versions of the game, causing it to give two extra combo points instead of one. But, that's just my opinion. Assassination Talents (31 points) Improved Eviscerate - 3/3 points Increases the damage done by your Eviscerate ability by 15%. Malice - 5/5 points Increases your critical strike chance by 5%. Ruthlessness - 3/3 points Gives your finishing moves a 60% chance to add a combo point to your target. Murder - 2/2 points Increases your chance to hit while using your Sap, Ambush, Garrote, or Cheap Shot abilities by 5%. Relentless Strikes - 1/1 point Your finishing moves have a 20% chance per combo point to restore 25 energy. Lethality - 5/5 points Increases the critical strike damage bonus of your Sinister Strike, Gouge, Backstab, Ghostly Strike, or Hemorrhage abilities by 30%. Improved Instant Poison - 2/5 points Increases the chance to apply Instant Poison to your target by 4%. Cold Blood - 1/1 point When activated, increases the critical strike chance of your next Sinister Strike, Backstab, Ambush, or Eviscerate by 100%. Improved Kidney Shot - 3/3 points Reduces the cooldown of your Kidney Shot ability by 5 seconds. Seal Fate - 5/5 points Your critical strikes from abilities that add combo points have a 100% chance to add an additional combo point. Vigor - 1/1 point Increases your maximum Energy by 10. Combat Talents (5 points) Improved Sinister Strike - 2/2 points Reduces the Energy cost of your Sinister Strike ability by 5 Energy. Improved Gouge - 3/3 points Increases the effect duration of your Gouge ability by 1.5 seconds. Subtlety Talents (15 points) Camouflage - 5/5 points Increases your speed while stealthed by 15%. Elusiveness - 5/5 points Reduces the cooldown of your Evasion, Vanish, and Blind abilities by 1.3 minutes. Initiative - 5/5 points Gives you a 75% chance to add an additional combo point to your target when using your Ambush, Garrote, or Cheap Shot ability. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Now, there are builds for the combat rogue. Some people prefer a rogue that's more 'in-your-face,' even though it basically flies in the face of what a rogue is. But if that's your preferred method of playing, more power to you. It's not that the combat tree is filled with bad talents, it's just that there are much more useful ones in the other two trees. My opinion entirely, naturally. I can't really list any combat builds, since they're dependent on your preferred weapon. A rogue specializing in daggers will have a different build than one who likes swords or maces. However, all builds should include Dual Wield Specialization, which improves the damage output of your offhand weapon. Blade Flurry is another talent you'll want to have, as it'll actually make you useful when fighting groups. As for Assassination and Subtlety talents, you'll want to have Camouflage maxed out, even if all you do is rush in and attack the enemy, along with Improved Eviscerate and Malice. The more criticals, the better. =============================================================================== 9. Where to Quest =============================================================================== This is asked a lot. Too damn much, actually. Blizzard should make signposts or something. Anyway, this is primarily drawn from my own experience at getting various characters up to 60. It's divided into level range, then by which side you're on, and later simply by zone. I'll give warnings for zones that are ganking hotbeds on PVP servers, but if you're not, just ignore them. Let me know if I missed a zone (unless I did it intentionally). Levels 1-20 - This is the same for all races. Go through the starting area, quest till you're ready for the zone next door, quest there for a while, etc. The Alliance has a few choices, namely Westfall, Loch Modan and Darkshore. Hands down, the best place to level from 11-20 is Darkshore. It has the best difficulty scale with its quests and they all involve quite a bit of killing. You should definitely quest in Westfall until you've finished the VanCleef line, though. The Horde's only two areas are the Barrens and Silverpine Forest. The Barrens has more quests, but Silverpine has a nice selection if you're undead. In terms of instances, for Alliance, do Deadmines starting when you're level 18. If you can get a group sooner, more power to you, but you'll have trouble hitting enemies in the latter half of the instance. For Horde, go to Ragefire Chasm starting at 14-16, then Wailing Caverns at 18-22. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Levels 21-30 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Alliance - A combination of Redridge Mountains and Wetlands provides some good quests that'll keep you busy for a while. Wait till level 25 to go to Duskwood. At that point you can handle the earlier quests with ease, and be ready to take on the later ones immediately after. Duskwood and the latter few Wetlands quests should hold you till 30. Stockades is a good instance to run through at 25 or so. There's no great loot to be had, just a lot of quests, XP and cloth. Horde - Hillsbrad. If you're on a PVP server, I sincerely apologize, but Hillsbrad does indeed have some of the better quests available. Other areas include Ashenvale, which isn't a bad place to go, but you do run the risk of being ganked by a whole lot of 60's waiting for their turn in Warsong Gulch. At 25 you can start questing in Thousand Needles, and on the servers I've been to it's mostly populated by Horde, except in the Shimmering Flats area, which isn't till later. Probably the best place is the Stonetalon Mountains. It usually isn't populated by the Alliance, and has some good quests to get up to 30. For both sides, Blackfathom Deeps can be done around 25 (that is, you will be effective against most of the enemies there at that level or higher) and provides some good loot and XP, plus quests. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Levels 31-40 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Alliance - Stranglethorn Vale. Bar none, it has the absolute best quests for this level range, and even up to level 45. It's a great place to level up, but on a PVP server, be prepared to spend the majority of your time running back to your corpse and praying some level 60 isn't camping it. Alternate places include a combination of Arathi and Hillsbrad quests, though both those zones combined don't give the XP of Stranglethorn. Desolace is a nice, if dreary, place to level. The centaur quests give you a lot to do, especially when you're trying to build up your reputation with one side or the other. Go through Gnomeregan as soon as possible and get those quests out of the way. Gnomeregan sucks. At level 34, you can start going to Scarlet Monestary, but only to the library. At 36, head to the armory. At 38, the cathedral. All three are great for loot and XP. Horde - Stranglethorn Vale. See above. Depending on your server population, there may be gankage. What am I saying, there WILL be gankage. Anyway, Arathi contains some good quests, though you can't do the big ones (Stromgarde) till you're about 37 or so. The best place to level in your early 30's is Shimmering Flats. It has a bunch of general 'kill this, collect that' quests for you to do. Desolace is also nice, but I didn't find it as plentiful in XP as on Alliance. Like Alliance, do Scarlet Monestary for loot and XP starting at the mid-30's. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Levels 41-50 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- At this point, the quests for both sides will be largely the same. Therefore, I'll be separating this level range by zone rather than side. Bear in mind that levels 41-45 are the biggest pain in the ass, since there are relatively few quests available for you then. It gets much easier in the latter 40's. Azshara - Don't bother going here until level 45 at a minimum. Immediately upon entering the zone and to your right you'll pick up a couple quests to grind the ghosts and satyrs. These are fun to kill, they provide good XP and cloth. Besides those, though, there's not much to do till after 50. Badlands - This is one of those zones I hate on principle. The wildlife is densely packed and have fairly wild pathing, so you can often end up fighting several wolves and vultures in a row by standing in one place. However, there are good quests for both sides, and Uldaman is the only instance to bridge the gap between Scarlet Monestary and Zul'farrak. I still don't like the place. Feralas - My personal favorite area, this place has some decent quests for Alliance, but better ones for the Horde. If you're into grinding, you can have fun with the gnolls, then the ogres when you're a little higher. Otherwise, kill naga for the Alliance and everything else for the Horde. Once you're in your high 40's, go to the northwest end for more quests. Hinterlands - For the Alliance, a lot of quests will take place, if not originate here. For the Horde, there are loads of quests in the new troll village. The downside? You'll need to be 45-46 in order to do most of them, plus the troll village is on the opposite side of the zone as Aerie Peak. However, these quests are to the Horde what the new Searing Gorge quests are to both sides. Lots of killing, lots to do. Much fun and loot to be had, including a great trinket, a fantastic necklace, and an awesome fishing pole. Searing Gorge - Don't go here before level 46. There are maybe two or three quests you can do before then, but the majority (meaning those given at Thorium Point) will require a range of 46-47 do to effectively. This place is similar to Badlands in terms of wildlife, but the difference is the critters here are more spaced out and it's easier to go through them. There is an issue with the patrol paths of the dwarves in the Cauldron. It can take a while to get used to them, and you'll be killed quite a bit until you do. There are an absolute TON of quests, though, and this place will more than likely carry you from 46 to 50. Swamp of Sorrows - Technically you can start going here in your high 30's, but quite frankly, you'll need a level edge on the local wildlife so you don't spend the majority of your time trying not to be eaten. This is a good place for the Horde to level on a PVP server, since the Stonard scouts can help you out if needed. There aren't a lot of quests here, but if you're an alchemist, you won't find a better source of blindweed. Tanaris - If you're into PVP, this is the place. Like Booty Bay, you won't be able to go two steps in Gadgetzan on a PVP server without picking a fight. Otherwise, the wastewander bandits are quite possibly the single best thing to grind. They drop more cloth than the Bloodsail pirates (based on personal experience, I may just be unlucky in Stranglethorn Vale) and provide a nice XP bonus with their water pouches. Instances - Beginning at 40, you can go to Uldaman and generally do well until you hit the latter half and the level 45 troggs. You can start going to Zul'farrak (and be effective) at 45, although there isn't a whole lot of loot to be had there for a rogue. Well, aside from Mason's Fraternity Ring, a reward for the Divin-o Rod quest. You can technically go to Maraudon at 45, but only the orange side. At 47, start going to the purple side and kill Vyletongue for a Satyr's lash, and Celebras for the Rod of Celebras. At 48, you can start going on Princess runs and still hit most of the monsters. Make sure to kill Rotgrip after Princess. The big croc drops a pair of boots that are perfect for the rogue on the go. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Levels 51-55 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Azshara - With new levels opens new opportunities in this zone. You're given the opportunity to kill a few snooty high elves, along with naga and maybe a few giants along the way. You'll be coming back here later, so don't get too sick of it. Blasted Lands - To be honest, this place sucks for quests. There are a bunch you can take on for either side, but they consist of collection quests with a drop rate somewhere in the neighborhood of 0.0001% or less. Still, if you want to grind wildlife (or sneak a peek at the Dark Portal) there's no place better. Burning Steppes - Good for both sides. Morgan's Vigil holds the start of the Onyxia key quest for the Alliance, and you can still kill stuff on the Horde side. This is where PVP really gets fun, since you're closing the level gap on the 60's. Felwood - This place is so depressing. The first thing you should do, whether you're Alliance or Horde, is start killing the enemies of the Timbermaw to raise your reputation to Unfriendly. Once it's up that high, you can safely pass through their stronghold to Moonglade and Winterspring. Afterwards, there are quests to be done at the Emerald Sanctuary, which mostly involve killing satyrs. Fun stuff. Un'goro Crater - Like Badlands and the rest, this place is dominated by its rather primitive and lethal wildlife. However, Marshal's Refuge also contains probably the best collection of quests this side of Searing Gorge. The sheer amount of reward XP you'll get will net you half a level, not including all the XP from the staggering number of critters you'll slaughter. Western Plaguelands - For the Alliance, kill stuff in the Writhing Haunt. The skellies there drop runecloth and scourgestones. Fun. There are quests for the Horde, but you won't be able to get them from Chillwind. Head to the Bulwark for their version of the good ol' Scourge-stomping quests. Andorhal remains an undead stronghold, but good luck doing anything in there till your mid 50's. Otherwise, do the cauldron quests for relatively easy XP, though you may need a group for them. You can't sap the undead and the cauldron lords will often have a couple lackeys with him. Instances - Sunken Temple can be done in the low 50's, but good luck getting a group for it. It may just be the servers I play on, though. From the dragons, you can get a ring and dagger (both have random enchantments, hope for a 'ring/dagger of the monkey') Also in the low 50's, you can start doing BRD quests, although going down to the emperor's lair will require you to be 56-57 or so. Still, you can have fun in the upper reaches of BRD till then. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Levels 56-60 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Now the fun stuff. Most of the areas mentioned previously make a return, but there are some new ones worth a look. Azshara - As far as I know there's no new quests here, however, this zone will feature prominently in a quest line that starts from an NPC along the border of the Swamp of Sorrows and Blasted Lands. Blasted Lands - There's just one quest here worth your time. Talk to the ghost NPC sitting at the border of the Swamp of Sorrows and Blasted Lands. He'll start you on a long, involved quest line that'll take you through the Blasted Lands and introduce you to several areas of Azshara. The whole quest line can be done in a few hours, somewhat shorter if you don't fight everything in your way and have help for the elites you'll have to kill. The final part of the line WILL require a party, and a good one that knows what they're doing, but the final rewards are a ton of XP, a 16-slot bag and a nice trinket (and I think something else, I forget). Burning Steppes - Once again return for more ogres, dragons and nutty orcs trying to ruin Azeroth's good times. More quests await when you're in this particular level range, so have at it. Deadwind Pass - There are zero, I repeat, zero quests here as of the 1.7 patch. However, you can grind the ogres here right up to 60, and very, very few people go there if you're concerned about PVP (or competition). Eastern Plaguelands - If you're Horde, get your quests from the Blightcaller. If you're Alliance, get them from the guy along the east end of the Thondoril River. They're good grinding quests, and give lots of XP. After finishing all three you'll be sent on a long quest line that'll let you tour a lot of EPL, and will require a five-man Scarlet Stratholme run. However, I highly recommend going through it, since there's a lot of XP to be had, and the very last part of the quest line is very, very fun. Silithus - A new area, this place is populated by a wide variety of victims. Ghosts, bugs and elementals. But mostly bugs. There are some quests, but not very many. There'll be more as of the 1.8 patch, according to Blizzard. Hopefully they'll have good item rewards, since most people who come here are either level 60 or close to it. Western Plaguelands - Most of Andorhal's quests can be done earlier than this, but you'll kick more undead ass with greater levels. Either way, you likely won't finish the cauldrons till 56, unless you get a higher-level group to take you through. Winterspring - Probably has the best set of quests among the zones. From killing furbolgs and yetis to assaulting a furbolg courier, you'll stain the snow red with the blood of your enemies. Once again, beware of Freelook and its open-arms attitude toward PVP on like-minded servers. Instances - Dire Maul's east side is open starting at 56 (though you might have to convince the group you're trying to get into). Starting at 57, start trying to get into Stratholme and Lower Blackrock Spire raids (or groups). Also finish up any remaining BRD quests and especially the quest to kill the emperor, as it nets a nice ring. At 58, all the raiding instances are more or less open, but be prepared to be rejected in favor of a 60 rogue. Bear in mind raids are the absolute worst way to gain XP, but they do pay off over time with great loot. =============================================================================== 10. Professions =============================================================================== Many professions are open to you, but you can only take on two at a time. Which ones to take is a very important decision, and can shape the entire game for you. However, you can always take on the three secondary professions: Cooking, Fishing and First Aid and still be able to accept your two primary professions with no penalty. With that said, let's run through them real quick. Alchemy - Sister profession to Herbalism. Never take this without it, unless you like paying exorbitant rates for reagents at the auction house. Useful if you want to transmute your own arcanite, or charge others for the privilege. Blacksmithing - Unless you're planning on crafting armor and weapons and then selling them to people, you'd be better off with another profession. Enchanting - Only take this if you enjoy slowly building up a skill, then spending hours (or tons of gold) to get the necessary reagents, then screaming at people in capital cities and hoping someone buys something. I'm not a big fan of this profession, as you can probably tell. You can take enchanting and simply sell the reagents you get from disenchanting greens, which is easier and still makes money. Engineering - This is an interesting profession, but don't expect to make any money off of it until much later in the game. Lots of engineering equipment can't be used by anyone but other engineers, but you can create stuff that you can then install on other people's equipment (and charge them for it!) Herbalism - This is a decent profession, but doesn't bring in quite as much money as leatherworking and mining until later in the game. Best when paired with Alchemy, obviously. Leatherworking - Best when paired with Skinning so you have materials to work with. It's much less expensive than other crafting professions, although later in the game you'll run across recipes that call for some fairly rare items. Mining - Only take this if you intend on using it for money, or if you really want to be a Blacksmith. Mining is rather competitive, so be prepared to fight for an ore deposit on higher-populated servers. Skinning - Best when paired with Leatherworking, obviously. You can take it up and just sell all the leather you get for money, but as a rogue I prefer to craft my own armor. Tailoring - Obviously you won't be wearing anything you make, seeing as it's all cloth and has very few agility bonuses. However, when paired with enchanting, it gives you a good source of green and blue items to disenchant. Plus, later on you'll be able to purify mooncloth, which is a terrific source of money. Now then, which is the best? Well, Alchemy/Herbalism lets you create your own potions, a very handy ability since you have no other methods of healing yourself. Skinning/Leatherworking lets you create your own armor, and while it may seem bad at first, at about level 35 you can create and equip Nightshade equipment, which gives amazing agility and stamina bonuses. Engineering and Enchanting shouldn't be taken unless you have a gathering skill to support the amount of money you'll have to invest. Mining and Blacksmithing just seem pointless to me, since with the time you spend making equipment for other people, you could be making items for yourself. That's my two cents, anyway. You're certainly free to choose whatever profession combination you wish. =============================================================================== 11. Lockpicking =============================================================================== Lockpicking can be a difficult skill to maintain. Rather than professions, which have periodic boosts in the maximum skill number that you can buy from trainers, the maximum skill value for lockpicking increases by 5 for every level. So, when you first buy the skill at level 16, the max skill you'll be able to attain will be 80. At level 35, it'll be 175. At 60, it'll top out at 300. Lockpicking can also be a difficult skill to improve. Both the Alliance and Horde side have a quest that sends you to several practice locks you can pick which will raise your skill up to 100, at which point the boxes become gray and you no longer gain skill. At this point you can pick up to iron lockboxes, which people will undoubtedly have and will ask for a rogue (like you) to open for them. Currently rogues can gain lockpicking skill from picking boxes in the do not trade window (finally) and Blizzard has added footlockers to the various areas in the game to practice skill. Basically, these footlockers coorespond to the level of the region in terms of the lockpicking skill needed to open them. So footlockers in a level 20 area would take around 100 or so lockpicking skill to open. With that said, the first place you can go as Alliance is the lumber mill where the lockpicking quest takes place. You can use the above-mentioned and all-in-caps technique to open the strongbox over and over again for skill points. You can also open the chest in the tower where the poison quest takes place, but unless you're of a very high level, you'll end up aggro-ing the elite that wanders around there. Also, bear in mind the chest in Redridge is set on a timer. You cannot (I repeat, CANNOT) just pick it over and over and gain skill points. You have to wait a few minutes after picking it at first, then try again to get another skill point. To raise your skill to 175, your options are limited primarily to footlockers. You'll find the appropriate ones in the waters of Hillsbrad, Arathi, Desolace, Stranglethorn Vale, all the level 25-35+ areas. After this, you'll want to go to the Scarlet Monestary. There are two doors outside the instance you can pick, and two doors inside (in the Armory and Cathedral). Don't bother going inside the instance if you're not in a group. The doors outside will reset eventually, allowing you to gain skill points over and over again. You can use these up until level 45 when your skill maxes out at 225. From there, you can open literally anything. Congrats, you're now a well-sought-after rogue. But first, a word on lockpicking for profit. On many servers, you'll see rogues offering their lockbox picking services for money. There will also be non-rogues offering to pay rogues to open their lockboxes. However, there will also be the nuts, like me, who open other people's lockboxes for free, simply because we can. In short, don't expect to make money from opening other people's lockboxes. Work for free. Work for tips if you want, but never insist on being paid, and always be courteous to the nice little non-rogues. While you may be offering a service unavailable to others, there will always be those like me who will do it for nothing. Do it because you can, not because you want money. There are instances for that sort of thing. =============================================================================== 12. Poisons =============================================================================== I decided to slap in this section since I've recently started playing around with poisons and determined their proper value to a rogue on the go. For the most part what you'll want to use is Instant Poison. It's fast, simple, effective. Deals damage instantly, as opposed to damage over time, and the 20% application rate is higher than you may think. In a 30-minute period of grinding, I've run out of charges far sooner than the time limit would have ended. For PVP, Instant Poison is also a help, but Crippling Poison is your bread and butter. Crippling Poison has the rather helpful effect of cutting your opponent's movement speed when it's activated. At rank 2, it will slice your poor victim's speed by a full 70%. This ensures an opponent who likes to keep his/her distance will fight on your level and on your terms. This is the power of a rogue. Against any and all spellcasters, you'll want to toss out Mind-Numbing Poison. This will increase their casting time and give you more time to stop them with a well-placed Kick or Gouge. Have Mind-Numbing Poison on one dagger and Crippling Poison on the other and you'll make sport of those magic-tossers. Wounding and Deadly Poisons aren't that useful except against high-armor enemies, though if you're dueling a paladin, don't bother, they can cure the poison if they're at all intelligent. Wounding Poison isn't worth the trouble. In the time you took lowering their healing ability, you could be using Mind- Numbing Poison and Kick to simply eliminate that healing spell entirely. Poisons can first be acquired at level 20, and it takes quite a bit of poison- brewing to get your skill up enough to be able to use the good stuff. I would recommend holding off on mixing poisons till perhaps level 30-40, since the sheer volume of materials can cost you a gold or two that would be otherwise better spent. Plus you don't have access to the good poisons till your late 30's anyway. One thing to bear in mind: poisons are not like your other rogue skills. New recipes aren't dependent on previous ones. Put simply, if you get your poison skill high enough to buy Instant Poison III and you have yet to buy Instant Poison II, you can buy rank 3 without ever having purchased rank 2. Very useful, since you won't generally have need of Mind-Numbing Poison till later in the game when you're in PVP against spellcasters. =============================================================================== 13. Frequently Asked Questions =============================================================================== While I ordinarily put this section near the top of the guide, that would involve me renumbering the entire thing a third time, and I simply don't want to do that. Q. Monsters keep detecting me while stealthed! Why? A. Remember that monsters have a better chance of detecting you based on your level and whether or not you're behind them, as well as your proximity to them. If you can't stay behind them, keep your distance. If you're still being detected, either invest in the Master of Deception talent or level up. Q. What talents should I invest in? A. It's really up to you. If you don't particularly care about PVP and just want to enjoy yourself fighting monsters, literally any build will suffice. However, if you're going into PVP, I recommend either of the two builds I've listed here. They're mostly the same except for a few points here and there. Q. Why should I use poisons? I've done fine without them so far! A. I once thought this way, primarily because I never did the poison quest until level 30 (kept putting it off) and never started using poisons till level 38 (also procrastinated, go me!) However, poisons give you that special edge no one else has. It lets you deal extra damage, gives you an ability to slow people's movements and spellcasting. Plus it's fairly cheap to do. Once you start seeing how fast enemies die with just a few applications of Instant Poison, you won't want to fight without it. Q. Is there a permanent poison? I don't like running out of time/charges! A. No. Just invest in a bigger bag and keep a few stacks of your favorite poison on hand. Q. Where do I get reagents for poisons/Vanish/Blind? A. A particular vendor called the Shady Dealer has all that you need. You can usually find one in capital cities near the rogue trainer, and there are a few in other cities like Booty Bay. Q. How do I beat [insert class here] in PVP? A. Sorry, but I haven't written up PVP strategies yet, and I might not be able to get to them for a while since I have a Tauren shaman I need to level up. =============================================================================== 14. Acknowledgements =============================================================================== Thanks to you, the reader and gamer, for taking the time to read my faq. Thanks to HoodedMonk07 for the Gouge/Backstab thing. Totally forgot about it. Also thanks to Ayndin for...well, a lot of information I have yet to sort out. And some thanks to Turbo 164 for pointing out a few errors and such. Thanks to Syrick for telling me I missed tailoring in the professions list. Thanks to Blizzard for letting me swipe the racial traits from their site, and not getting uppity about it. Thanks to Blizzard and the development team responsible for creating this masterpiece. Thanks to CJayC and Gamefaqs for hosting it. =============================================================================== 15. Copyright Info =============================================================================== This file is Copyright (c)2002-2005 to its respective author, namely myself. All rights reserved. This file may be not be reproduced under any circumstances except for personal, private use. It may not be placed on any web site or otherwise distributed publicly without advance written permission. Use of this guide on any web site other than those listed below, or as a part of any public display is strictly prohibited, and a violation of copyright. Sites allowed to use this FAQ: www.gamefaqs.com www.ign.com www.neoseeker.com If you find this FAQ on www.cheatcc.com, it has been stolen by the webmaster there and is being used in violation of intellectual copyright laws and more importantly, against my wishes. Simply, www.cheatcc.com and its respective webmaster does not have my permission to use this FAQ on his website. To contact me for permission to use my FAQ on your website, e-mail me here: firstname.lastname@example.org.