Encrypted Text: My rogue wish list for Mists of Pandaria

Chase Christian
C. Christian|11.16.11

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Encrypted Text: My rogue wish list for Mists of Pandaria
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Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any questions or article suggestions you'd like to see covered here.

We learned a lot of information about Mists of Pandaria at BlizzCon 2011. The early talent trees were released, and so we have a rough idea of what we'll see at level 90. We don't know exactly what abilities we'll receive as part of choosing a talent specialization, but it's assumed that we'll see most of our former talents returning.

While we do have some information, we're still missing pieces of the puzzle. It's likely that we'll receive new abilities in Mists of Pandaria in addition to the talent system revamp. Any predictions about what might happen are purely speculation, but there's no harm in talking about what we'd like to see. I have a list of abilities and ideas that I think fit with the rogue theme, and I'm hoping that I might see one of them implemented in Mists of Pandaria.

Death Grip needs to be shared

I mentioned this a few weeks ago, but I really think that Death Grip is too powerful for only one class to have access to it. There exists a subset of abilities in WoW that are so unique that they're always valuable, and Death Grip is one of those abilities. If you look at similar spells like Typhoon and Leap of Faith, their value is obvious. Moving targets around is a very special type of action, and I can think of nothing better to give rogues some value outside of DPS.

I think it's perfectly possible to give rogues their own version of Death Grip without breaking the game's balance. Yes, every rogue will be able to pick up Shadowstep in MoP, and I understand that coupling Death Grip with Shadowstep would be overpowered. Our enemies actually need to have some slight opportunity to survive our attack, and that requires being able to create some distance.

My idea would be either putting Grip of Shadow on a shared cooldown as Shadowstep or putting it on the same tier as Shadowstep in our talent tree. Who wants Deadly Throw to be clogging up our talent tree anyway? Grip of Shadow would synergize immediately with Smoke Bomb, allowing us to set up complicated combos. The only issue is that when a death knight uses Death Grip, it also taunts their target, which is logical. I have an idea for that too.

Rogues could taunt, too

Would it really be so wrong for rogues to be able to taunt? Shaman are able to taunt via Rockbiter Weapon and Unleash Elements, and they've never been a tanking class. Rogues were actually able to use bucklers back in WoW's beta days, and we have a plethora of cooldowns that allow us to reduce our incoming damage for a time. I'm not talking about designing rogues to tank, as I know there are plenty of rogues who would love for the combat tree to turn into a tanking tree for us.

I just want to be able to exert more control on our targets. The ability to taunt and to control threat can be very powerful when used properly, and we're the only melee class that can't taunt. In fact, even a few of the healers are able to taunt. With Vanish and Tricks of the Trade already on our side, rogues could become masters of threat. If we actually picked up Grip of Shadows, then allowing that to be our taunt ability makes even more sense.

I want Displacer Beast

After reading through the talent previews for each class, there was only one talent that caught my eye. Druids will have the option to pick up Displacer Beast, which teleports them 20 yards away in a random direction, removes all DoTs, and puts them into stealth. I would love to see a glyph for Vanish that gave it this behavior, as the functionality sounds fun.

I do have to say that the latest Vanish incarnation is still awesome. Because we're guaranteed to stay in Stealth for a few precious seconds, many of our gripes with it have disappeared. The only situation where it's not perfect is when we're covered in DoTs and we don't want to reengage immediately. The current Vanish works great if we're going to reopen on our target, but sometimes we want to run away. Displacer Beast is the perfect answer for that scenario.

Non-dagger off-hand weapons rule

You know me, I'm a sucker for a rogue with two huge axes. I love the imagery of double maces and swords, and there's something powerful about watching a rogue with dual fist weapons beating someone up. While the current itemization trend looks to rule out any chance of a quick sword or axe for our off-hand in Cataclysm, Mists of Pandaria is another story.

With the introduction of the monk class and the radical rebuild of our talent trees, it would be the perfect opportunity to align the agility-based melee classes to prefer a quick off-hand weapon. With enhancement shaman, windwalker monks, and rogues all vying for the same quick weapons, Blizzard could easily justify their itemization. Monks might be good for rogues after all.

What would you love to see for your rogue in Mists of Pandaria?

Sneak in every Wednesday for our Molten Front ganking guide, a deep-dive into the world of playing a subtlety rogue -- and of course, all the basics in our guide to the latest rogue gear.

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