Outlaw Rogue Review - Battle for Azeroth Class Community Opinions
Throughout the pre-patch, we'll be launching a community opinions article for every class and spec. We're continuing our Pre-Patch State of the Class and in this post, we'll be taking a look at the state of Outlaw Rogue. See if this spec appeals to you in the pre-patch!
We reached out to the Outlaw Rogue community to give their thoughts and opinions on the changes and current state of Outlaw in the pre-patch.
If this spec appeals to you after reading this article, check out our
Battle for Azeroth Outlaw Rogue Guide
Ravenholdt is the online community for rogues. From social to guides, to theorycrafting, we do rogue.
- Theorycrafter, guide writer and moderator in the Ravenholdt discord.
- Loktark is a prominent member and moderator in the Ravenholdt discord community. He is the current writer of the Ravenholdt Outlaw guide, having mained Outlaw for all of Legion. He has high hopes for his spec moving into Battle for Azeroth.
- Mystler is a Rogue Theorycrafter in the Ravenholdt community who also works on SimulationCraft, Hero Damage and more. While he spends time with theorycraft on all specs, his favorite spec and the one he usually plays is Subtlety. Follow him on
- Paryah runs the Ravenholdt website, is an admin on the Ravenholdt Discord, and is responsible for the weekly Fans of Knives rogue news blog. She plays all three specs, but is currently raiding on Subtlety. Follow her on
- wEak raids in Memento. He aids the rogue team with TC related stuff and works on the Ravenholdt spec guides. Follow him on
Outlaw and its predecessor, Combat, have been renowned as the fast paced rogue spec with a particular affinity for AoE damage. Legion saw many players move away from the spec as it became bogged down with RNG heavy abilities early in the expansion. Battle for Azeroth promises a slower paced but more engaging version of the spec.
Moving into Battle for Azeroth, Outlaw’s two primary generators have seen significant changes.
no longer has a delay between combo points when generating 2 from a double hit, costs 45 energy instead of 50, and has been renamed to “Sinister Strike”.
now reduces the cost of pistol shot by only 50%, but doubles the damage. The change to Pistol shot means that we spend more energy for fewer combo points spacing out finishers, and slowing down play a bit.
Outlaw’s hugely powerful AoE ability,
is no longer a togglable ability that reduces energy regeneration. It now runs off of a charge system with 2 charges, 25 second recharge, 12 second duration, and a cost of 15 energy . The damage dealt has been increased to 45% of our single target damage, and now includes damage dealt by Pistol Shot and
. While this change looks bad to some since we will no longer have a 100% uptime on
it’s actually a good change for gameplay.
will be more engaging to use and far less passive than it has been in the past.
Outlaw’s core class mechanic Roll the bones has had several the buffs renamed, but only 2 buffs were changed in functionality. Shark infested waters has been renamed to
and now grants 20% crit chance to all skills and an additional 40% to
changed from 25% crit to all attacks.
now grants a flat 4 energy per second instead of 30% increased energy regeneration. Jolly roger has been renamed to
. Broadsides has been renamed to
The change to Shark (
) is the only one with much substance as it causes us to cast
whenever the buff is currently active adding some much needed flavour to an otherwise bland buff. The change to
is a significant nerf to the buff as the 4 energy per second does not scale with haste in any way and is always 4 per second. Lastly Grand melee a buff which has seen no changes at all is actually significantly stronger due to the buff to Auto-Attack damage in BFA
A couple of utility changes will mostly affect Mythic+. The cooldown of
is now 15 seconds up from 10. With this change, Outlaw rogues will not be able to interrupt mobs with
has been removed. Even though
was rarely used, it was nice to have for Mythic+.
now reduces cooldowns by 1 second per combo point up from 0.5 seconds. This helps compensate for our reduced combo point generation to keep our cooldown coming back quickly.
Run through has had its range reduced to match all of our other melee attacks, and has been renamed to “
”. While the loss of range is not significant to our damage it will be noticed in any open world application where you very frequently took advantage of the extra range.
now has a static chance to trigger, and mastery rating now increases the damage dealt. Because of this change, mastery rating will no longer increase our energy regeneration but Main Gauche will deal considerably more damage.
now has a 75% chance to trigger up from 30%. While this change looks like an extreme buff it is actually 2 changes together. The tooltip now displays the the chance to trigger for a slow (2.6) weapon instead of a very fast (1.4) weapon. On top of this change the chance to trigger was increased to match what we have now with 5 ranks of
. This means the actual trigger chance for a slow (2.6) weapon was increased from 55% to 75%, and increased from 38% to 51% for a fast (1.8) weapon.
Vitality has been changed from 20% increased energy regeneration rate to 35%, and it has been merged with
. The increased energy from this change helps counter the loss of resources from our artifact weapon traits.
has been given a 35 second cooldown (reduced by
). This change means that
will not have a 100% uptime causing you to plan around when it may be up.
is now baseline and the talent has been replaced with
which reduces the cooldown to 30 seconds from 60. This change is something many Outlaw players have wanted for nearly the entire expansion. Definitely a good change.
Anticipation has been removed from our level 45 row and replaced with
. This change frees up the t100 talent row and allows us to have
as situational talent. The cooldown is too high to displace Deeper Stratagem or Vigor when resets are not available.
Parley has been replaced with
, a talent that reduces the cooldown of Blind by 30 seconds and increases the range by 15 yards. This new talent is extremely powerful as it allows us to hit a target with Blind from 30 yards away, a range that exceeds any of our attacks.
Prey on the weak now includes
but no longer includes
or Sap, and applies a 6 second damage boost regardless of the duration of the CC. This change gives us group utility for CCing and bursting a priority add in dungeons or raids through the use of
The 2 changes to this row take it from “Always pick dirty tricks” to an interesting utility row where every choice has a different effect that will be taken based off of what you need for the activity you are doing.
Cannonball Barrage has been removed.
now increases haste by 2% with 5 stacks. This change helps compensate for our lower combo point generation by reducing the number of required stacks significantly at the extreme cost of halving the maximum haste.
is now a level 90 talent.
is now a level 90 talent, and now increases attack speed by 50% down from 125%
These changes to the level 90 row put three extremely powerful resource generating talents in the same row. The
change may seem extreme, but it is there to balance out the fact that all specs now do considerably more auto-attack damage than they have done in the past. None of these choices feel insignificant, and the decision between them will greatly affect the gameplay and flow of the spec.
Death from Above has been removed.
is a new talent that increases the duration of
by 3 seconds and its damage by 5%.
is a new talent that charges at a target up to 20 yards away dealing damage to your target and all nearby enemies on a 45 second cooldown(reduced by
is now a level 100 talent, and its duration has been reduced to 2 seconds.
The changes to our level 100 talents generate some odd choices.
is a very welcome mobility ability, and feels like a skill that simply outclasses
feels better to use than
due to the greatly reduced cooldown, increased range, and instant cast as opposed to a lockdown.
is a pure aoe/cleave talent in a row competing with 2 talents that actually affect single target damage, something that will cause
to only be used in extremely niche situations.
With the loss of artifact weapons, Outlaw is losing its most impactful cooldown Curse of the Dreadblades. Losing Curse of the Dreadblades means we have a less bursty playstyle with no cooldown that significantly changes the way we generate our combo points. The loss of most of our other traits will not really be felt as we have received changes within the class to compensate for their removal.
Outlaw is losing 3 legendaries that significantly change our gameplay when equipped.
gave us a very powerful cooldown. The loss of this cooldown brings Outlaw down to only having Adrenaline Rush as a damage increasing cooldown.
a very engaging effect that caused you to toggle it, and plan around your 3 second damage windows. I think the changes made to
are an acceptable replacement for the engaging features of this legendary.
changed gameplay significantly by adding a lot more decision making to the rotation. The azerite trait, Deadshot, is extremely similar to the effect of this legendary and will produce a similar level of decision making for the spec.
Overall our loss of legendaries and artifacts has been compensated for significantly, but compensation for our loss of cooldowns has come up short. It would have been great to see either a new skill or Vanish made a damage cooldown. Unfortunately it is likely too late for any new skills to added, but future azerite traits could still cause vanish to become a DPS cooldown again.
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