The Rogue is primarily a melee damage dealer. This section lists common Assassination, Combat and Subtlety builds. Talent builders can be used to test different builds or slight variants on the ones listed below, and links as well as details can be found on the Rogue talent page.
- 1 Level 80 Builds
- 2 Assassination
- 3 Combat
- 4 Subtlety
- 5 Unverified Level 80 Builds (Needs Cleanup)
- 5.1 Pepelianka's PvE build  (14/0/57)
- 5.2 Mutilation Bleedation (53/5/13)
- 5.3 PvE Assassination SS (51/15/5)
- 5.4 Arena Sub Spec (7/13/51)
- 5.5 Dagger/Fist Builds
- 5.6 Fist/Sword/Mace Builds
- 5.7 Rogue Builds for Dual Talent Specialization: plate, clothes, rogueVSrogue
- 6 Old Level 70 Builds
- 7 Old Level 60 builds
- 8 Leveling to 80
- 9 External links
Level 80 Builds
Builds in this section are the result of extensive community discussion, testing, and consensus. Sources may be found at the bottom of the page. If you have a personal build you would like to submit, please add it to the unverified section below.
For raiding, Assassination is slightly ahead of Combat, with Subtlety far behind.
Mutilate Daggers (51/18/2)
Currently the highest single-target DPS build of any class in the game, although hotfixes since 3.3 have reduced the edge. Get Slice and Dice up, apply a bleed if necessary (it's not if you have a warrior or feral druid), Hunger for Blood, then Mutilate for combo points and Envenom. Repeat as needed, making sure to keep HfB up.
PvP Mutilate/Preparation (41/5/25)
Considered the bread and butter of PvP specs, Mut/Prep utilizes the strengths of multiple defensive cooldowns that can be used twice in a small timeframe due to . This build maintains high burst without sacraficing mobility or defensive capability.
A variation of 41/5/25 cookie cutter which uses as the main finisher in order to dish out and sustain high, unmitigated, burst damage. The build's drawbacks include difficulty vs. classes which spam cleansing spells, and the inability to keep players blinded or gouged while deadly poison is ticking. All armor types will be hit much harder by 5CP/DP than any 5CP due to envenom ignoring armor. The two points in can be put into if you are not worried about being sapped. This build is very effective in Arenas, BGs, and World PvP. }}
The variation of 46/20/5 uses kidney shot almost immediately after breaking stealth and gaining combo points quickly with mutilate/gouge allowing you to use eviscerate frequently and gouging often not allowing the enemy to do much. It is really useful against a healer and/or any other form of casters while using wound poison on the main hand and mind numbing on the off hand. 1 point can be taken out of master of deception and put into blade flurry if wanted. This build is mainly used in arena's but good in BGs and world PvP as well.
Mutilate Rogue 3.3.5 (51/13/7)
This is a variation of the Mutilate Rogue Daggers. First off, you would want a slower MH than your OH (1.8 sec MH and 1.4 sec OH works the best). You want to prioritise in Crit Rating, Attack power, Haste, and Hit Rating (just being above the hit cap is fine). Expertise is not needed as much because you will be behind the boss, although it does help in fights where you can't be behind them. Armor penetration is not needed as much because you will be doing so much damage anyway. Again, it does help, but really isnt needed. The opener you want to use is Garrote. You should do a mutilate to get 4 points, then Slice and Dice. Before garrote goes away try to get in your Hunger for Blood. Use mutilate to get to 4 points, then Rupture. Do the same as you did, get 4 points with mutilate then Envenom. You want to keep up Slice and Dice, Rupture, and Hunger for blood up the enite fight. Envenom to refresh Slice and Dice. You would want to have Instant Poison IX on your main hand, and Deadly Poison IX on you off hand. This ensures that you do damage with your instant poison almost as much as your deadly poison, and the envenom buff ensures that you keep getting your deadly poison up around 5 stacks for maximum poison damage. Here is a simplified version of the rotation: Garrote->Mut->SnD->HfB->Mut x2->Rupture-> Mut x2-> Envenom and repeat. You want to have the following Glyphs. Glyph of Rupture Glyph of Slice and Dice Glyph of Hunger for Blood The minor glyphs you can choose for the build. With this build and rotation you can put out immense DPS and damage with it done correctly. If done correctly it can pull around 6000 DPS and in ICC around 6500 or higher! This is the build you want if you are looking for a mutilate build for raids.
Hack and Slash (20/51/0)
Fist and Dagger (20/51/0)
Utilizes all of the DPS increasing talents in the combat tree, and the most popular and highest damage combination of the 20 points remaining in assassination. The choice between 1/4 Vile/Improved Poisons and 2/3 Vile/Improved poisons is highly gear-dependant, but generally 1/4 is the favored combination.
Sixsixx’s Subtlety Crits Build (20/0/51)
|Purpose||Subtlety Build for PvP and Arena|
Utilizes large amounts of burst damage, the most successful rotation for this build is Premediation->Ambush->Shadow Dance->Ambush->Eviscerate->Gouge->Ambush->Backstab->Eviscerate->Stealth(If required perform a Hemorrhage->Gouge->Blind->Ambush->Eviscerate/Kidney Shot (Kidney Shot if an escape is required) NOTE: Preparation may also be used for a re-do of the rotation. This build is currently the largest tested single-target burst damage build in the game. The build provides incredible damage, whilst also giving survivability and Hemorrhage for face-to-face combat. The build revolves around constant critical strikes and fast Combo Point generation, with the incorporation of Shadow Dance for continued Ambushes.
Honor Among Thieves (8/20/43)
Honor Among Thieves (Or HAT) is an interesting build centering around (and named after) the talent . Combo points are built by your partymates' critical attacks, rather than Sinister Strike or Mutilate. Sample play includes maintaining 3-5pt Slice and Dice, while using as many 3-5pt Eviscerates as possible.
Formerly viable for raiding, but nerfed terribly with 3.2.
HaT Backstabber (16/0/55)
High burst combined with to improve building cp. Used since sub specced rogues doesn't have any talent that improves energy regeneration like in Combat tree or in Assassination tree. This build let's you take down cloth wearers easliy while not making you defenseless with heavy armored opponents. This is Battleground pvp build and should not be used in arenas.
Unverified Level 80 Builds (Needs Cleanup)
The builds in this section are submitted by individuals and are (for the most part) not the result of community discussion or consensus. They are included here because some of them may be very effective situationally or may show promise with further testing.
Pepelianka's PvE build  (14/0/57)
|Purpose||Subtlety PvP build for blonds ("PvE" is not a typo although it is PvP build)|
"As long as rogue’s natural environment consist mainly of players of the opposite faction, I consider myself a PvE player and my subtlety build a PvE build". (Pepelianka)
Mutilation Bleedation (53/5/13)
Claimed to be the highest possible dps build since 3.3 release, but without references. Strategy: Keep + + up at all time, use every cooldown and to 4-5 CP then ( wait until your buff is gone before you ! ) - Poisons: MH-Instant OH-Deadly - build has been tested and is by far better than all other mutilation specs.
PvE Assassination SS (51/15/5)
This is an assassination build that uses a fist/dagger weapon choice, using SS as the primary combo point builder. Start with Garrote > HfB > SnD > SS > Envenom and then go into a "3-5 rupture > 3-5 envenom > 3-5 envenom" rotation, using HfB whenever needed to keep it up. Problems with this build: NEED to have high hit and expertise This build can pull the same DPS as the conventional PvE mutilate build, if not more.
Arena Sub Spec (7/13/51)
|Tested patch||not yet tested|
This spec relies on cooldowns like evasion and shadowdance to beat the other 2v2 team. You go into stealth, premeditate, Shadowstep behind the enemy, then ambush, evasion, sprint, ghostly strike, shadowdance, and then keep using ambush until shadowdance is done, then backstab the target until evasion is done, then vanish, ambush, and then keep backstabbing until dead (1 rogue), preperation (I don't know if you can use in arenas yet), vanish, shadowstep (other target if only 1 rogue is in the group), premeditate, ambush (instant crit for 1 rogue groups only), evasion, sprint, ghostly strike, and then backstabbing the enemy until dead. Also, make sure you use cloak of shadows or stoneform (for dwarves) if you have DoTs on you before you use vanish. Use eviscerate once you get 5 cp. Also can be used when both players are rogues, just get rid of remorseless attacks and put it in one more point in lethality and both rogues attack different targets and stay on your target for the whole time instead of switching over once you use vanish the 2nd time. It might seem confusing, so I would try it on a dummy first.
(51/18/2)Lightning Mutilate PVE Here i have skipped Turn the Tables for Lightning reflexes(10% haste) which should give a nice increase in white damage, but also increase your ability dps via Focused attacks. Go with fast daggers.. Slow ones can also be used, but fast is recommended for Focused attacks. Deadly on MainH - Insta on OffH. Open with garrote -> HfB -> Slice n'dice -> Envenom (and for easy understanding) use Mutilate -> Mutilate -> Rupture/Envenom rinse'repeat (Genez, Earthren Ring)
(21/3/47)BACKSTAB SHADOWSTEP PVP 3.1 untested shadowstep backstab spec purely for pvp, Premed + Shadowstep -> ambush -> finishing move, use BS as combo builder always. EDIT, Fixed talents to the better, Removed Blood Spatter for Vigor and Cold Blood.
wh(54/10/7) *New* Mutilate Daggers 3.1 Pretty much the same as the official mutilate raiding build. But with the poison changes in 3.1 and the Master Poisoner change they did, instead of glyph of envenom. This can be the way to go in 3.1 (Hsdirr, Kazzak)
(51/13/7) Alternate Mutilate Daggers Using this build you should open up with Ambush and build up combo with Mutilate and use Eviscrate to spend those points. Try to get two daggers with high damage (usually slow ones) to maximise Mutilate. For raiding go for Cut to the Chase instead of Improved Poisons and have your S&D up all the time. Try to have Hunger For Blood up at all times!
(42/5/24) Mutilate Pvp Stunlock Build. CS, Mut, KS, Mut, Mut, Then split off depending on situation, if they're almost dead, use Eviscerate, if you're almost dead, use and vanish, then repeat. Use instant poison on MH and wound on OH. If you know your going against caster used wound on MH and mind numbing on OH. (Xaar, Kael'thas, Alliance)
(12/34/25) Fist - Adrenaline Rush/Hemo (Defiance of Crushridge, Alliance)
(32/5/34) Overkill + Premiditation (Graceland, Runetotem, Alliance.)
(19/0/52) Shadowdance ambush spam! PvP burst damage build, alternative lose master of subtlety and elusiveness for relentless strikes. Bladedemon aerie peak
(51/13/7) Mutilate Eviscerate/Rupture Build Perfect for both farming, questing, and 5 mans
(46/15/10) Mutilate + Poisoning with Crit focus (ßladetusk of Earthen Ring)
(49/17/5) Combat/Assassination with Relentless Strikes (Ksara of Ysondre)
(51/15/5) Mutilate Close Quarters (Noordiana of Fenris)
(20/17/41) Casual all-around tri-spec with fist main hand Based on Hemo/Rupture/S&D for DPS
(50/0/21) Mutilate/Ambush + Prep spec (high DPS) (Skizzelz of SwC)
(51/13/7) Eviscerate raid build. Paired with a Glyph of Evisceration and Instant Poison on both weapons, this build utilises best in slot gear and assumes a raid makeup including a retribution paladin (for 3% crit to raid buff, replacing master poisoner) and a hunter using poisonous shots (or another rogue with deadly or wound poison). (Torps of Dreadmaul)
(41/21/9) Mutilate + Survivability (Leveling) (Demonazz of Fizzcrank)
(15/51/5) Combat Backstab Raiding - Glyphs: Rupture, Slice and Dice,Adrenaline Rush - Rotation: BSx2, SnD, BSx5, SnD, BSx5, Rupt, BSx3 SnD. This rotation changes depending on procs of Relentless Strikes and Combat Potency, but the jist is: Spam BS, Keep SnD up AT ALL TIMES, and use rupture when you have max CP's and SnD is not below 10 seconds left.Very effective for DPS in Raids. PS. For Patch 3.1.0, switch Glyph of Adrenaline Rush with Glyph of Backstab, and change talent setup to This (Kildrazien @ Boulderfist)
(34/0/37) Pure PVP w/o Lvl 60 Abls Sure you lose out on the lvl 60 fun rogue abilities, but if played right, this will own in pvp =D, must have Glyph of Vigor, Glyph of Hemmorage, Glyph of Garrote. Used best for PVP and using Wound Poison VII for Deadly Brew (Rank 2). Have also set up a specific macro, One Button PvP, that hopefully, crossing my fingers, works the way it should as a Casting Sequence. IF, thats a big if, the macro works like it should, it should either kill any reg caster, minus Druid and Pally, and take any other player down to about 1/2 health in a few seconds.
Note: Must remove first Cold Blood from the macro if using Glyphs listed.
(14/12/45)Sword Raid Spec(Fast Combo Points for Snd, Rupture, Evis, worked well until HaT bug fixed)
(27/0/44) Fast combo point, poison base Snd, Rupture, envemon with hemorrhage, use gylphs of snd, rupture and hemo. Requires good hit rating (bladedemon aerie peak) Edit since HaT nurf this build doesn't outperform other raiding builds.
(7/51/13) Sword Raid Spec(Elitest Jerks)
(18/51/2) shiv spec Wound poison main hand instant offhand, Substitute shiv for SS and play as any other combat build, gives better dps for fast-fast weapon combination
(20/51/0) Combat Swords/Assassination (Nalice of Khaz'goroth)
(16/0/55) Subtlety Swords/ Assassination (Vonaviles) PvP Build
(13/51/7) Combat Fists PvE Raid Spec - Glyph of Vigor needed to increase energy pool to 120
(15/51/5) DUNGEON Spec (Combat Swords) (Detolin of Aggramar) - This Spec is designed for lvl 80 Dungeons, Heroics, and Solo/Questing. It grabs Vigor coupled with Glyph of Vigor for a stronger opener for solo/trash mobs. As of Patch 3.1.1 the best Poison combo for this build is MH-Wound Poison, OH-Deadly Poison. In Dungeons/Heroics use Garrote(Opener), Slice&Dice(Finisher), "Rupture(Finisher) on bosses" and "Eviscerate(Finisher) on Trash".
(18/51/2) Combat Sword/Axe PvE Raid Spec Wound MH / Deadly OH - Standard Combat rotation with increased Poison damage by 20%. (Krizzone of Akama formerly of Anub'arak)
Rogue Builds for Dual Talent Specialization: plate, clothes, rogueVSrogue
Common basic Mutilate Spec 41/5/25
Common, for the cycle
Sap > Cheap Shot > Mutilate > Kidney Shot > Mutilate 2x > Cold Blood + Eviscerate or Rupture *NOTE2
then Blind or CoS+Vanish wait for CS to finish his cool down, and all this again. Link Wow Armory (3.3)
Wowpedia's one .. Link Wowhead (3.3)
Mutilate against Locks, Priest, Clothes, Rogues 42/5/24
A stun-lock one, with fast combo point generation and fast energy gains. Link Wow Armory (3.3)
NOTE: Against mages you should use a different strategy: Sap > Sprint (*) > Garrote (**) > Mutilate > Rupture and then, Mutilate Kidney Shot to the end. Just preserve Cloak of Shadows/Vanish for emergences and against Mage's Blink
(*) always have Sprint on! Never wasted if used immediately! It can decide the result of the duel
(**) silences them
Mutilate vs Plates
All talents put to improve Rupture (+60%, talents stacks), Garrote, and melee combo point generation. Poisons are fundamental, use Evasion/Prep from the beginning, Sprint and KILL!
Get 5CP and first of all Rupture, Envenom, do not care about cp generation, will do this for you, just keep an eye on 's cooldown and remember to always have it on, use Evasion, always prep after Evasion.
You can use a totaly diffent strategy: you can begin the stun lock cycle, then the enemy, wait the 5 sec to get out of combat, stealth and immediately sap the opponent, thanks to the talent. Not a really clever strategy, but can give you a great versatility.
Shadowstep, Shadowdance (clothes: Ambush ed Eviscerate)
Nice against ranged classes, sometimes slow but with the best crit percentage available. does the dirty work, and it's +20% damage is a nice buff. Rarely used in PVP servers, but worth a try. 2-3 points on could be interesting for battlegrounds, but is fairly useless in 1 on 1 combat.
Old Level 70 Builds
Please see Rogue builds/Level 70
Old Level 60 builds
Please see Rogue builds/Level 60
Leveling to 80
Please see Starting_a_rogue#Leveling_to_80