WORK IN PROGRESS This guide will explain and emphasize the lesser known and explored aspects of assassination rogue and how to implement them to truly bring the potential out of the spec. I may gloss over a few things i deem to expect the majority of the readers to already comprehend. Assassination rogue in legion has defintely had its role shifted compared to wod, and with the big numbers and new appeal of the outlaw spec, it can be rare to find a twink who is assassination. After playing around with it, i found many little interesting things that make the spec very engaging and deadly. Index : 1. Gear 2. Spells 3. Talents 4. Races 5. Additional strategy 1. Gear : Since the only way to gain statistical bonuses is from ilv differences above the avg ilv of your level, i will not go into detail on each piece of general gear. However, weapon speed still does effect Mutilate in a pretty big way. The best MH wep would be jagged wing slasher which is gained from the quest "Securing the Lines". If u are ally and cannot access the quest then broad bladed knife. Best OH would be the Sharpened Scarlet Kris or balanced heartseeker. This is from what i can assume is because of the DPS of the wep with the max / min wep dmg per swing after testing various weapons and it seems to effect OH much greater than MH since the jagged wing slasher is much higher than any other wep MH. The rare dagger from the bg crate should be better, but i have yet to test. If anyone notices any other weps which result in higher mutilate dmg please mention here. There are some very close variables, but since the boa is so easily accessible there is no reason why not to use it. 2. Spells : Cheap Shot - A 4 second stun, cost is 40 energy, gives 2 CP's and melee range only. This is the general opener out of stealth. However, there are many times when using this will not maximize your energy usage and CP generation. You should of course be tracking DR's on the target u wish open on. Opening with Mutilate will not only give u ~ 800 more instant opening dmg, but give u a ~ 48-50% chance to gain 3 CP's instead of 2 since if either ur MH mutilate or OH mutilate crit it will give u 3 CP's. For maximum immediate burst it is possible to land a cheap shot into 2 mutilates within the full 4 second stun. More often than not its better to use rupture ( i will point out the reasons later), but if u believe the target will die with an extra ~800 immediate dmg don't be afraid to use that second mutilate even if it only gives 1 out of the potential 3 CP's possible. Crimson Vial - 30% max HP heal over 6 seconds, cost is 30 energy, 30 second CD. Very simplistic self-heal. If used in the midst of a 1v1 / battle, keep in mind the energy it uses and it will limit ur dps for that time being until u get the energy back. Some tips for this are to try to kite before using so your DoTs hit the enemy and u can use the time to regain hp and energy as they rot away. Important Note : This ability can be used in stealth without breaking. So not only can it just be used as a general heal as u move ability, but if u manage a re-stealth u should likely use this to gain nearly any health back before re-opening (unless its only ~300-450 less than ur max hp). This is because having that higher base hp to start and using all ur energy on dps will likely keep u alive better and kill / pressure the enemy much easier. It is a HoT so the healing isnt immediate and can make ur dmg more clunky and full of holes rather than smooth and un-predictable. Of course there are going to be times u will need to pop this to survive while in combat. For example, trying to kill efc with no healers can be very frustrating. Against a defense u can sap healer and try to bait out a trinket from them as u open on efc. This will grant u more base CP's and allow a full sap / cheap shot on the healer if u manage to survive. LoSing, then using crimson vial can be just enough to survive and bandage to a more stable HP. Distract - A very old and overlooked ability, it has ~12 yard diameter with a 30 yard range. The ability will make any enemy in the circumference of the ability face the center point that u chose, however the enemy/enemies must be out of combat for distract to take effect. For any moving player it can cause them to turn around and continue moving in the direction u distracted them in until they manually change it. For players using their mouse to move it is very easy to quickly adjust, but if timed well they still will move in the direction u distracted. There are quite a few bugs with this spell tho. Sometimes when using it on a target at nearly max range of the general spell and the diameter of the spell effect, they will be able to "outrun" the ability before it takes effect and they will not turn or be effected. So be careful of far u lead ur target from the spell effect. - Some game-changing uses of distract can be to un-expectantly force an efc or enemy player down from cliff-type areas in bgs. Specifically the area around both ToT's are great for getting the target to fall into ur gy area or ramp area with u waiting below for a sap or ur whole team to destroy him/her. In general this will be used to force a target back into ur range of sap if u end up behind them on their route thru mid in either direction. If the area u used it on has only in-combat enemies, it will not allow u to use the spell at all. Some interesting but rare uses of the ability is to turn a hard-casting dps around if they are out of combat ( like a boomy opening with lunar strike or coming back into fight casting it ). Ideally sapping would be the best bet for this scenario, but u can gain a few extra seconds of technical cc by causing them to LoS their own target before sapping. As well as being able to do it from a ~40 yard range, compared to 10 yards. Another thing to note is that if a pet is in the vicinity of distract they will turn to the center of the ability and not move until told to do otherwise or their master gets too far from them. This can be used to create some distance between the pet and their master giving u less damage pressure to take and stopping potential cc like succubus charm. Envenom - This is one of the two finishing moves for assassination at level 29. It Consumes up to 5 CP's to deal nature damage and apply a buff giving u 30% more poison application chance for up to 6 seconds ( 1+ *however many CP's u used* seconds). Honestly, this is a rarely used move nowadays. In the past the damage was also still sub-par but the increase poison proc would allow u to crippling poison druids or other speedy classes allowing u to stay ontop of them in order to kill. However, now with the extra mobility spells we have and with druids losing displacer beast and nerf on powershifting, the extra % of poisons procs is nearly nothing. It does generate a few more dmg with the lethal poison procs, but its negligible. Mostly i use this ability on high-armor classes / specs after i have a rupture on them, or to finish off an enemy when i only have 35-54 energy and cannot use mutilate to finish them off. Otherwise keeping CP's to spread rupture is important for energy regen, mid pressure, and ur ability to swap on targets to kill. Evasion - 100% dodge rate for 10 seconds, 2 minute CD. An important difference between Outlaw spec and Assassination, this ability can allow u to survive a wall of melee dps to return flags / land healer kills or just survive. 2 minute CD is decently short and as long as u continue to change the direction ur char is facing so they are facing the incoming physical dmg, it will be dodged. Using this in conjunction with crimson vial can be the difference between surviving to gain positioning in mid/ kill efc and not. Use wisely, when u know there is incoming physical dmg burst and u can face it. Also, unless u are certain u will survive because of it, try not to use evasion while at extremely low HP. Generally a pally or some other spell / ranged ability will end up hitting u to take your life and waste ur evasion CD. When to use it and when to just die or have faith in ur team / healers is very important in landing reliable efc kills on heavy defense. Kick - A 5 second lock-out, melee range, 15 second CD. General melee range interrupt, Fore-seeing a juke or baiting one out can be very reliant on the player u are trying to do so on and the circumstances surrounding it. I can't go into detail for every scneario but keep in mind their past patterns skill-level and how good they think u are / how they have seen u kick them before. For BG's i suggest using a mouseover macro for kick to allow for kick on healers while still dpsing or targeting the main dps target. Keep in mind when u randomly run up near a good skill level healer they will generally stop casting to try to juke the kick as most players will kick then. Even high level healers may be forced to do the same unless they know u are just trying to make them fake cast. Mutilate - The only non-talent ability to gain CP's at this level. Costs 55 energy, strikes twice, once with mh (larger hit) and once with OH (smaller hit). This ability is very high on burst damage but very high in energy cost. Anytime u need immediate dmg on a target use this. It has nearly a 50% chance to generate 3 CP's and ~ 4% chance to generate 4 CP's (both oh and mh need to crit). Poisoned Knife - Ranged damage attack which applies both poisons at once when it hits, 40 energy cost, 30 yard range and generates 1 CP. Deals between 80-110 dmg depending on armor of target. Very versatile ability. Even if it may barely ever land a killing blow, it can slow down enemy to allow your team / you to catch up to him/her or just in general to whittle away at a fleeing druid. Mage blink, hunter disengage and other displacement abilities can be countered with a quick throw which will apply crippling poison and your lethal poison. While it isn't as efficient in CP generation as mutilate is, if u have no target in range and u know that the 40 energy cost will be replenished before being in melee range of an enemy than there is no reason not to use it really. Many times I like to use this to keep slows and poisons on either potential swap targets or healers. If a druid fc is trying to outrun u, it can be very easy to throw this on his healer behind him and make the healer lose range if the efc keeps running. As far as using it for potential targets in mid, keeping an enemy caster / healer slowed who is pushed up a little too far can really help ur team realize how easy a kill they can be. If necessary, this should also be used to try to peel melee off ur healers / fc. As u can see it is indeed very versatile. We will be going into some more detail later on with some very out of the box uses of this. Keep in mind that only assassination rogue has this ability, so other spec rogues can be kited with it much easier. Outlaw has pistol shot but it only has a 20 yard range and doesn't apply poisons. Sprint - 70% movement speed for 8 seconds, 1 minute CD. It is very important u use this move with shadowstep in mind. Since shadowstep is a great cap-closer in combat (literally teleports u behind the target) it is more often than not more viable to use that to do catch up or swap to a target. Sprint will generally be used to catch up to a target for sap, opener or get in range for a distract into sap if they are significantly far from u. Sprint can be used in stealth. Since the CD is only 1 minute, using this to stay ahead of efc, get across mid, or just generally position urself better for an incoming efc / team battle, is a fine idea. Just try to keep shadowstep off-CD if ur sprint is going to be used like this. Having both shadowstep and sprint on CD can lead to u being kited or not being able to accomplish what u were aiming to do. If u get swapped to in a group fight, it is ok to sprint away to safety behind ur healers / team. Since we have shadowstep and many chars have nearly no way to get away from assassination rogue, I often find myself using this spell to position myself in a more ideal spot, stay ahead of efc, or just to cross mid faster if efc is across already. Deadly poison / Crippling poison and Wound poison - Grouped all 3 poisons together to quickly explain their uses. - Deadly poison: A DoT with a 50% chance to proc. If the DoT is already applied it will do a small amount of immediate dmg instead on proc. Nothing fancy at all about this one. Can be used to stop rogues / druids from re-stealthing, or just in general to keep max dps on any enemy. - Crippling poison: The only non-lethal poison available at this level. Of course it applies a slow for 7 seconds. As we said before, it can be used to peel melee off u and ur teammates. - Wound poison: The second lethal poison available, applies a short duration debuff that reduces healing taken by the effected target by 25%. This is a more situational poison. To get full use out of wound poison, generally there must be a high amount of incoming heals on the effected target. Unfortunately, if that is ever the cast usually the heals will be able to overcome ur dps and the healing reduction. There are a few cases i like to switch to this tho. Lets say you have a few players with u trying to attack an efc with defense set up around their own roof or gy. U can only sap a healer and perhaps cheap shot another one, which gives ur team only a limited time to kill the efc with no heals. Once the efc starts receiving heals, if they get 3-4k healing on the efc. the overall healing reduction compared to the dmg deadly poison would've done in that time would be greater. So, on some occasions swapping to wound poison to kill efc is not a bad idea. U need to gauge the in-coming healing and how much of it u cc.