6.2 Preliminary Analysis

Update 4/15: The dps numbers for subtlety did not take into account the sanguinary veins buff which understated the damage increase for sub, I’ve updated numbers accordingly.

This post will focus on the changes announced in the patch notes as well as the trinkets available on the PTR. There is some ambiguity in the set bonus notes and the subtlety 4pc looks broken so I’m going to hold off on analyzing those for now. Lets start with the most baffling change of these notes, the Shuriken Toss buff.

Shuriken Toss now deals 53% more autoattack damage. Additionally, fixed a bug that caused hits made with offhand weapons to deal 15% more damage than intended.

To be clear about what this change does, it buffs the damage of the ranged auto attacks from 75% of a regular white swing to 114.75% of a regular white swing. That’s right, if you are greater than 10 yards from the boss your white swings now hit 14.75% harder. I’ve already seen some people suggesting that this buff combined with the Archimonde trinket we may see the rise of the ranged combat rogue. This is unlikely, first using this build would require some really finicky positioning, within 10 and 20 yards of the boss, weaving in and out for killing spree, which is unlikely to work well on bosses with large hit boxes, highly mobile encounters or encounters requiring precise positioning, that is to say most modern raid encounters. Second ST still doesn’t advance bandit’s guile rendering it much less useful, there is a plausible rotation that involves weaving out of melee range during deep insight, whether that beats out marked for death however is unclear, and I hope it doesn’t become a thing.

Other than this theoretical rotation with the Archimonde trinket I don’t get the point of this buff. In the past Blizzard has made changes to keep shuriken toss out of single target rotations, it doesn’t advance BG, it doesn’t advance sub dots, it doesn’t proc blindside, it’s just flat out less efficient at generating cps than our regular cp builders. Even if we can auto attack from 30 yards away we still can’t use finishers (Archimonde trinket excepted). It’s a solution in search of problem, if Blizzard puts in another Atremedes boss rogues will somewhat less bad than other melee but still hardly worth bringing not to mention what would happen to the other melee without a partial ranged rotation. Shuriken Toss is a waste of a talent grid square, it has been since it was introduced and buffing it doesn’t really change that.

Tuning Changes:
The following numbers are based on ShadowCraft using gearsets based on the SimC T17H (ilvl 685) and T17M (ilvl 700) sets. These include T17 set bonuses.

Envenom now deals 10% more damage.
Mutilate now deals 10% more damage.

Overall this works out to be an approximately 3.2% buff for assassination single target. It does not buff multi-target damage nor does it change stat weights.

Eviscerate now deals 10% more damage.
Sinister Strike now deals 10% more damage.
Mastery: Main Gauche has increased in effectiveness by 10%.

Overall this works out to be an approximately 5.7% buff for combat on single target and 4.8% on three target sustained AoE. Mastery moves from combat’s worst stat to combat’s 3rd best stat on single target and challenging multistrike for 2nd best stat in some gearsets. The buff to combat’s mastery is curious, while mastery tended to be combat’s weakest stat it wasn’t by much, in the test gear sets mastery and crit were roughly equal as dump stats with versatility only slightly ahead (<0.02 EP). Why Blizzard felt the need to buff mastery while leaving crit and versatility as dump stats is a mystery.

Eviscerate now deals 10% more damage.
Mastery: Executioner has decreased in effectiveness by 8%.
Backstab now deals 20% more damage.
Sanguinary Vein now causes the Rogue to deal 30% more damage to targets affected by Rupture (up from 25%).

Overall this works out to be an approximately 2.6% 6.7% buff for subtlety on single target. Mastery as expected becomes weaker however in the tested gearsets it remains the 2nd best stat for single target subtlety. The subtlety change does however nerf subtlety’s AoE capabilities by shifting damage from rupture and crimson tempest into backstab and eviscerate. This further marks subtlety as a primarily single target spec, since its AoE was already limited except in specific, relatively rare, situations such as high target sustained AoE. The backstab buff also appears to kills hemorrhage weaving.  Given that this was a minor optimization that added very little complexity to the spec I don’t mind this change.

Balance Considerations:
The primary effect of these tuning changes appears to be the ascendance of combat into the primary spec for most encounters. Currently combat is approximately 5% behind subtlety on single target and while these buffs do not completely cover the gap they get combat close enough that many may not be interested in swapping specs for an extra 1-1.5% damage. Additionally combat’s already strong advantage on AoE becomes even more pronounced as it is buffed while assassination sees no changes and subtlety takes a small nerf.

Overall these changes do not appear to substantially change the basic balance calculus for sub and combat currently.  Sub gains a larger single target advantage and combat gains a larger AoE advantage.  These changes appear to be further doubling down on niche based design encouraging the sub/combat setup that it appears most raiders are running.

These changes also also do not address the problems of assassination, currently the odd-spec-out. While assassination does get a non-trivial buff it is smaller than the combat buff and not enough to bring assassination within striking distance of subtlety on single target. Additionally the buffs to mutilate and no changes to dispatch further dilutes one of assassination’s potential niches. Currently execute range is an approximately 11% dps increase for assassination, these changes reduce that 9%. Nothing in these changes is enough to break the current combat/subtlety status quo.

Trinket Analysis:
Trinkets were implemented in ShadowCraft and tested with the SimC T17H (ilvl 685) and T17M (ilvl 700) gearsets with and without set bonuses. This analysis is based on 6.1 mechanics but that should not substantially impact the value of these trinkets. Since this is a ShadowCraft trinket analysis there are a couple important caveats.

  1. ShC does not currently take into account proc stacking so beating heart of the mountain is somewhat undervalued for assassination and subtlety.
  2. ShC’s envenom uptime modeling is a slightly optimistic at high (>80%) envenom uptimes which may distort the value of the assassination Archimonde trinket.

This analysis compares the ilvl 695 version of each trinket with the ilvl 685 and ilvl 700 versions of BRF trinkets. For reference the five trinkets analyzed:
Fel-Spring Coil
Agility DPS Trinket 2
Agility DPS Trinket 3
Agility DPS Trinket 4
Archimonde Spec Trinket

Since we cannot currently test these trinkets I make the following assumptions about their functionality. If you discover any of these assumptions are incorrect during testing let me know and I’ll update the analysis. Since I will be updating these numbers as I get more information if people could refrain from copying the raw EP value tables to other places that would be great.

  1. The mirror images from Agility DPS Trinket 2 attacks inherits the owners haste, crit and multistrike using a 2.0 speed weapon. Additionally I assume the mirror images follow similar rules to shadow reflection, that is, they do not benefit from the rogue’s assassin’s resolve, bandit’s guile, find weakness , sanguinary veins, and vendetta.
  2. The damage stored by trinket 3 only applies to the rogue’s damage, damage from the shadow reflection clone is not stored.

General Thoughts:
Overall the trinkets are reasonably well balanced. There are some balance discrepancies but these are generally consistent with standard trinket variation. For most of the tested gearsets the gap between the best and worst 6.2 trinket is not substantially worse than the gap between the best and worst BRF trinket of the same ilvl.

Trinket 3 seems problematic due to the RPPM mechanic. Unlike many I don’t dislike RPPM on principle however the random nature of trinket 3 could make the trinket actively detrimental to your raid. Imagine if it procced during a short duration, blast furnace phase 2 for instance, and the burn would end before the effect explodes, during that duration you are dealing no damage to the burn target. An on-use trinket or an old style ICD trinket would be better fit for this effect, by contrast trinket 2 could easily be made an RPPM trinket.

The assassination spec trinket goes from underwhelming to very good depending on the T17 set bonuses. As I mentioned the trinket may be slightly overvalued with the T17 set bonuses because they inflate envenom uptime dramatically but not substantially. Some of this wide swing will be solved by gear scaling but at lower gear levels the trinket may be a bit underpowered. The trinket also potentially contributes to assassinations oversupply of resources at higher gear levels which breaks the envenom pooling mechanic.

Based on the assumptions I’ve made about the mirror images trinket 2 seems a bit underpowered. Rogues have a number of big percent modifiers that currently the shadow reflection clone does not inherit, if the mirror images follow the same rules it may end up an underwhelming for all rogue specs.

{slider EP Values|closed}

Assassination 685 No Tier
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     631.57197927
agi_3_695:                         592.776343664
fel_spring_coil_695:               586.817787623
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 580.462954146
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      566.032698861
agi_4_695:                         562.443136655
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     549.017916199
agi_2_695:                         531.543385726
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 503.703574604
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      491.808904858
assn_spec_trinket:                 377.171031558

Assassination 685 Tier
assn_spec_trinket:                 668.647672409
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     654.68416442
fel_spring_coil_695:               608.591519747
agi_3_695:                         592.486537412
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 580.105013736
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     569.057958644
agi_4_695:                         561.99682644
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      559.174794119
agi_2_695:                         521.605026608
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 503.392289289
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      485.939172783

Assassination 700 No Tier
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     646.353830887
agi_3_695:                         616.681190776
fel_spring_coil_695:               609.699826106
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 598.229278053
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      587.087858666
agi_4_695:                         582.387451401
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     561.864678713
agi_2_695:                         544.552207422
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 519.145330524
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      510.096069977
assn_spec_trinket:                 424.377446051

Assassination 700 Tier
assn_spec_trinket:                 768.501708599
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     673.067790726
fel_spring_coil_695:               632.118625873
agi_3_695:                         616.254724951
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 597.763137328
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     584.967138823
agi_4_695:                         581.811806555
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      578.521453046
agi_2_695:                         532.836983028 
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 518.739980466
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      502.694430385


Similar to the assassination spec trinket the combat spec trinket appears to rely heavily on current set bonuses for its value. However unlike the assassination spec trinket gear scaling is unlikely to make up that gap for combat. At most gear levels without the T17 set bonuses it looks like a midpack trinket. Also the range buff on eviscerate makes no sense, it doesn’t appear to be subtracting from the itemization budget so I’m not going to complain about a unique perk but it seems really out of place (Please don’t make 10-20 yard ranged rogue a thing).

{slider EP Values|closed}

Combat 685 No Tier
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      672.61734129
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     633.218346574
agi_2_695:                         620.640853217
agi_3_695:                         616.273825263
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 597.818266102
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      584.323326126
agi_4_695:                         581.010828565
fel_spring_coil_695:               576.811716031
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     550.466165804
combat_spec_trinket:               521.459869691
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 518.780099047

Combat 685 Tier
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      679.208710855
combat_spec_trinket:               676.261727092
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     631.30911392
agi_3_695:                         613.939463938
agi_2_695:                         599.252417897
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 595.807575502
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      590.003421189
agi_4_695:                         578.851341613
fel_spring_coil_695:               574.187346592
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     548.806658021
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 517.03373904

Combat 700 No Tier
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      709.104652422
agi_2_695:                         646.307858279
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     645.93741969
agi_3_695:                         639.781633076
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      616.003549311
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 610.027502547
fel_spring_coil_695:               596.451739497
agi_4_695:                         594.721243675
combat_spec_trinket:               589.326863392
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     561.520137401
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 529.391788013

Combat 700 Tier
combat_spec_trinket:               764.15213655
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      716.583821542
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     643.916097965
agi_3_695:                         637.225171383
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      622.448512457
agi_2_695:                         622.206287212
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 607.908004965
fel_spring_coil_695:               593.53573908
agi_4_695:                         592.432546943
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     559.763220075
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 527.550827013


As noted with the trinket 2 for assassination the assumptions I’ve made about how the mirror images interact that make the trinket somewhat underwhelming. This behavior would be consistent with shadow reflection but in this case I think some inconsistency to help increase the value of the trinket in line with the other agility trinkets may be needed.

Continuing what seems to be a broad theme, the subtlety spec trinket seems a bit underwhelming. The inclusion of garrote on the trinket is particularly funny since garrote isn’t worth using except to get SV up fast on the opener. As Hail joked last night, a 75% increase to 0 is still 0. The ambush buff seems very large but due to the lack of static stats on the trinket and subtlety’s high agility multiplier the trinket appears average if not well behind the other trinkets.

{slider EP Values|closed}

Subtlety 685 No Tier
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     717.81392058
agi_4_695:                         687.91018447
agi_3_695:                         684.794519487
fel_spring_coil_695:               669.551137623
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 666.551680983
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      643.69604081
agi_2_695:                         627.049954773
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     624.005580502
sub_spec_trinket:                  605.714067908
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 578.415345071
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      559.330517175

Subtlety 685 Tier
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     713.354818764
agi_4_695:                         683.270972448
agi_3_695:                         679.367305868
fel_spring_coil_695:               666.999468947
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 662.019219189
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      631.158817149
agi_2_695:                         621.31479507
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     620.130241226
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 574.475915662
sub_spec_trinket:                  553.968729771
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      548.438227061

Subtlety 700 No Tier
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     732.064143011
agi_4_695:                         711.664801256
agi_3_695:                         706.479053833
fel_spring_coil_695:               691.031978382
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 682.671493239
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      659.932979772
sub_spec_trinket:                  656.766293776
agi_2_695:                         642.168292319
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     636.390237536
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 592.426023013
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      573.436979564

Subltety 700 Tier
humming_blackiron_trigger_700:     731.41590484
agi_4_695:                         711.857094369
agi_3_695:                         706.400178482
fel_spring_coil_695:               692.470243376
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_700: 682.25937745
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_700:      652.451010871
humming_blackiron_trigger_685:     635.826863353
agi_2_695:                         635.764894246
sub_spec_trinket:                  628.568990732
beating_heart_of_the_mountain_685: 592.067828917
meaty_dragonspine_trophy_685:      566.93655128


Disagree with my analysis, see something I missed, think I’m an idiot, let me know on the forums.