Subtlety Rogue Guide

Welcome to the guide for Subtlety Rogue in 8.0. If you’re looking for a good introduction to playing Subtlety in Battle for Azeroth PvE, you’ve come to the right place.

Please note that things are subject to change in the early days of patch 8.0 as discoveries are made, hot fixes happen, and balance is under way.

Introduction

Subtlety is largely the same as it was in legion. The spec mainly lost some speed along the artifact weapon. It still offers great ability to feed multiple enemies into a priority target.

Talents

Subtlety talents focus on two builds depending on the amount of targets. More dancing for single target and more impactful dancing for AoE.

These talents are subject to change due to discoveries and hot fixes. This is only a simple outline for now.

Single Target

  • Level 15: Find Weakness
  • Level 30: Shadow Focus
  • Level 45: Marked for Death
  • Level 60: Optional
  • Level 75: Optional
  • Level 90: Enveloping Shadows
  • Level 100: Master of Shadows

Multi Target

  • Level 15: Find Weakness
  • Level 30: Shadow Focus
  • Level 45: Deeper Stratagem
  • Level 60: Optional
  • Level 75: Optional
  • Level 90: Dark Shadow
  • Level 100: Secret Technique

You should always run a simulation of your character to check which talents are best for you.

Gearing & Stats

Gearing in Battle for Azeroth should be more straight forward. Blizzard is trying to make item level always be the decidint factor and limit your ways of obtaining loot by having only personal loot, and not allowing trading of all pieces. We still have our prefered stats, but they should not be as decicive as in legion.

“Stat Weights,” is a term you might have heard many times. What is actually being discussed, is scale factors, because they usually change the moment you change a piece of equipment. This is why we recommend that you sim your character to compare items rather than relying on weights.

For stats you should be aiming for the following:

Single Target

  • Agility
  • Critical Strike
  • Haste
  • Versatility
  • Mastery

Multi Target

  • Agility
  • Mastery
  • Critical Strike
  • Versatility
  • Haste

For your food buff while raiding you should use the primary stat Feast. If you’re unable to use a Feast, the food for the secondary stat that you’re scale factors says is highest.

For potions you should use Battle pot of Agility in all situations.

For your flask you should always use Flask of the currents.

Azerite Powers

These are some of the powers you want to aim for for the respected encounter styles.

Single Target

Outer Ring

  • Blade In The Shadows Shadowstrike increases the damage your Shadowstrike deals for 1 min, stacking up to 10 times.
  • Dagger in tthe Back: Your damaging spells and abilities have a chance to fling a dagger at your target, causing them to bleed for Physical damage over 12 sec, stacking up to 4 times. Stabbing them in the back applies 2 stacks.
  • Thunderous Blast: Dealing damage has a chance to call down a Thunderous Blast, dealing Nature damage to the enemy and increasing the damage of Thunderous Blast by 20%. At 100% increased damage, Thunderous Blast will critically hit and reset this effect.

Inner Ring

  • Heed My Call: Your damaging abilities have a chance to deal Nature damage to your target, and to enemies within 3 yards of that target.
  • Earthlink: Azerite energy courses through you, reaching X primary stat and then diminishing down, cycling every 6 sec.
  • Elemental Whirl: Your damaging abilities have a chance to grant you Elemental Whirl, increasing your Critical Strike, Haste, Mastery, or Versatility by for 10 sec.

Multi Target

Outer Ring

  • Champion of Azeroth: Your spells and abilities have a chance to increase all secondary stats for 1 min, stacking up to 4 times.
  • Unstable Catalyst: Your spells and abilities have a chance to leak Azerite on the ground around you. Standing in the Azerite increases your primary stat for 8 sec.
  • Thunderous Blast: Dealing damage has a chance to call down a Thunderous Blast, dealing Nature damage to the enemy and increasing the damage of Thunderous Blast by 20%. At 100% increased damage, Thunderous Blast will critically hit and reset this effect.

Inner Ring

  • Heed My Call: Your damaging abilities have a chance to deal Nature damage to your target, and to enemies within 3 yards of that target.
  • Azerite Globules: Your damaging abilities have a chance to implant an Azerite Globule on your enemies. When an enemy collects 3 Azerite Globules, they explode, dealing Fire damage to nearby enemies.
  • Earthlink: Azerite energy courses through you, reaching X primary stat and then diminishing down, cycling every 6 sec.

For more information you can check out Herodamage for more traits or run a simulation for your character and the item(s) in question.

Rotation

Pre-Pull

  • 18 seconds on the pull timer, Marked for Death when talented
  • Potion
  • Shadow Blades

Pull

  • Shadowstrike
  • Nightblade
  • Shadow Dance
  • Symbols of Death
  • Shadowstrike
  • Shadowstrike
  • Secret Technique when talented
  • Eviscerate
  • Shadowstrike
  • Shadowstrike
  • Eviscerate
  • Shadow Dance repeat
  • Vanish to refresh Find Weakness

Cool Downs

  • Symbols of Death on cool down
  • Vanish to refresh Find Weakness
  • Shadowblades on cool down
  • Secret Technique on cool down, preferably inside Shadow Dance
  • Marked for Death on cool down at low combo points unless you can quickly reset it via a dying mob.

At 4-5 Combo Points or 5-6 Combo Points with Deeper Stratagem

  • Nightblade, refresh with 5.4 seconds remaining at 6 combo points, or 4.8 seconds remaining at 5 combo points, or 4.2 seconds remaining at 4 combo points
  • Secret Technique
  • Eviscerate

Builders Outside Shadow Dance

  • Backstab
  • Shuriken Storm, if there are 2 or more targets

Builders During Shadow Dance

  • Shadowstrike
  • Shuriken Storm, if there are 3 or more targets

Stealth and Shadow Dance Priorities

  • Vanish, when you need to refresh Find Weakness
  • Shadow Dance together with symbols of death, or when you are about to cap your charges

Cleave

  • Apply nightblade, if the target will live long enough

AddOns & Macros

There isn’t really any hard requirements for AddOns you should use. You should look into using Weak Auras and/or an energy bar AddOn.

Weak Auras

You can find a number of Weak Auras available on wago.io.

Macros

There are a number of macros to help with Shadow Dance and abilities used with it.

Shadow Dance → Shadowstrike

#showtooltip
/cast Shadow Dance
/cast Shadowstrike

Shadow Dance → Shuriken Storm

#showtooltip
/cast Shadow Dance
/cast Shuriken Storm

You can also create copies that use /cast Vanish instead of Shadow Dance.

Frequently Asked Questions

None yet!

Changelog

I’ll make a note of any changes to the guide and the date it was updated here if you want to come back in the future to check for changes.

Last updated: Friday, 10th August 2018 – Closing in on launch

Author

This guide has been written and is maintained by wEak. wEak has played rogue for over 10 years and is currently raiding with Memento. As well as maintaining this guide, wEak maintains the Ravenholdt Assassination guide and helps upkeep rogue profiles in simulationcraft.

If you have questions, please visit Ravenholdt Discord.