A call to rogues

Hey all, ive decided to really give my rogue a chance and main him. And i had a few questions for both Outlaw and Sub.

I am reading guides and practicing alot, so sorry if these questions seem dumb or silly. But i really want to learn to be a great rogue, and take to heart different perspectives of the class.


Im abit confused on why shadow dance is part of Outlaw, it just feels weird… to have that and not be sub. I thought the whole theme was to fight toe with a target as Outlaw. And sub was the spec that was supposed to weave in and out of stealth and shadow dance ( disappearing into the shadows just seems to be more of a sub thing).

Is there any way to play decently well without talenting into shadowdance as Outlaw ?

Also i went to look up Outlaw’s damage profile from simcraft. It seems that the damage is more sustain than burst ( seems very low on the burst part for a rogue spec) is this true ? Does Outlaw have a way to really burst down an opponent that im miss understanding.

Sub: how complicated is sub compared to Outlaw, if one where to switch from outlaw to sub how difficult would that be.

Also looking at Sub damage profile on simcraft it doesnt seem like Sub is that much higher in burst damage vs Outlaw. Is this true ? how bursty is sub compared to Outlaw?

Am i just reading the graph wrong when looking at thess specs ?

I want to thank anyone inadvance that took the time out to respond, i know you have better things to do, but thank you for your time and tips.


Don’t have an answer but I’m wondering the same thing.

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To answer both of your questions about Outlaw

Yes you can play without Shadow Dance, Keep it Rolling with Echoing Reprimand + Resounding Clarity can be marginally behind or marginally ahead of the best Shadow Dance builds depending on if you’re willing to forgo Grapple Hook. (If you’re new to Outlaw I’d advise against this). If you want to play Hidden Opportunity then sadly Dance is a bit of a necessity. You really need that failsafe for when procs aren’t going your way.

In terms of burst, not really, no. Outlaw has one of the flattest damage profiles in the game if not the flattest and is meant to be high sustain damage with not much in the way of explosive moments, but always providing good damage.


Well strictly speaking. Shadowdance is part of the rogue class. And that meant all three specs needed a way to utilize it.

No. Outlaw doesn’t burst, like at all. And Sub doesn’t have amazing burst, but it does do it often.

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Wow, thank you all for your time and responses. This has helped me understand rogue abit more.

Can an outlaw rogue hold its own in pvp or should i choose a different spec if i want to do pve one day and pvp another ?

Uncomfortable truths:

Outlaw is non-viable in PvP. Rogue as a whole is almost universally non-viable in PvP.

No. Opportunity and Spambush are now the entire identity of Rogue. Shadow Dance is crammed into all three specs because the developer responsible for the decision does not actively play Rogue.

Objectively less goofy busy-work buttons, but objectively more tedious micromanagement of cooldowns. Rogue as a class is drowning in short-cooldown busy-work-buttons on all three specs. No realistic way to escape it, no matter what you do.

Outlaw is one of the lowest performing specs in the game atm. It’s not necessarily that one is “out bursting” the other, but that neither are particularly good. Outlaw burst is gated heavily behind what RNGesus decides you’re worthy of on Roll The Bones, and procs.

Nope! Rogue is 2 of the 4 lowest DPS specs in the entire game currently. 10.2 rework is not really looking to change that, more of shuffle the cups and maintain the horrible busy-work that the class has become.

This is a very… rough? time to pick up Rogue and begin the process. I hope 10.2 figures out a way to completely bury useless nonsense like RTB/SND and give viable dps options.


Thank you, for your perspectives i really do want to get into rogue im just sad to hear all of that. Thats a bummer for rogues :frowning:

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I’ve played one since closed beta… It was a heart stab to bench my Rogue after they PvE gutted Outlaw, PvP gutted Assassination, and then gave all casters free-precog and more defensive budget than the US Armed Forces so that Sub can’t burst anyone anymore.

I hope they get restored to some iteration of former glory - or at least to a high-mid pack dps state (considering they’re one of the few “pures” remaining, and have no tank/heal option for PvE viability)

Really feels that way. I mained Rogue from Vanilla until Shadowlands and have a few at 70 but man… I REALLY don’t get Shadowdance in the main tree.

Maybe I’m just being old about it, idk, but it just feels wrong.

Not only does it force it on all 3 specs, it diminishes what it could have been if it was Sub-only.

For example, many rogues have long since noted the loss of finesse after past shadow dance changes… it could have been a talent that then hit a choice-node to bring back some old flavor.

The changes won’t really interest me until they take that out of the main tree.