I was terrible at rogue. I know this to be true because my previous attempts at rogue had damage so gawdawful bad, people in normally silent Dungeon Finder groups were openly questioning the validity of my very existence. This time around, however, I have made decisions based on Goa’s expertise instead of the heirlooms I had available, and have accordingly arrived at a stage where (holy sheeyit) it looks almost like I know what I’m doing. I’m not the worst DPS, you say? AHAHAHAHA REVENGEEEE YOU THOUGHT I SUCKED BUT YOU WERE WROOOONG
In other words, I suddenly feel about 95% more badass and am therefore qualified to write this “guide” for the equally incompetent.
Step One: Mental Preparation
1. Begin the process of getting over your love affair with Pickpocketing.
It is sad to admit, but your love of Pickpocketing will only lead you to great frustration when it comes to leveling in dungeon groups. Sheeyit dies too dang fast for you to actually Pickpocket and then Ambush. Pickpocketing a few coppers and some gnome effigies is but a brief joy soon superseded by sorrow, thanks to the poor DPS you will do as a result. Your goal is to find something that is hitting the tank, and attack it sooner than anybody else. (p.s., ogres have pockets. I hope you’re happy with that knowledge.)
2. Variety is the spice of life and all that jazz.
As DPS, one must prepare for a life of independence yet still be ready to work with others. Ye must know your skills (or know someone who does, like Goa), since things like Kidney Shot are quite handy when leveling on your own, but are sadly useless against a variety of dungeon mobs. DPS dungeon queues are quick and relatively painless up until about Blackrock, but once you’re in the 50s, you might as well quest until you hit 58. Then you can queue for Hellfire Ramparts, where things pick up once more. Once you hit the late 60s and start queueing for Utgarde Keep, you’ll probably want to quest until at least level 71 or so for your sanity. Otherwise, it’s Utgarde Keep, Utgarde Keep, Utgarde Keep, and some more Utgarde Keep for you. Ding, queue popped! Oh, would ya look at that, it’s Utgarde Keep.
3. But I suck at melee!
Okay, yeah, you do, but this is one of just two classes you don’t have at 90. You want one of everything, don’t you? Don’t you? Be the completionist that you are!
Step Two: Gear Preparation
You will need two heirloom daggers. Other heirlooms are technically optional, but they’re great for making your nooblet damage-dealing look good in comparison to the DPS of other people. “But Prinnie,” you say, “we’re in DIRE MAUL. Does this sheeyit even MATTER?” Fair question, fellow altoholic! You see, doing decent DPS without even trying hides the fact that you don’t quite know what you’re doing yet. Plus, looking good is good for your morale, and good morale is good for actually making it to the end of the leveling process. By then, theoretically, you’ll actually know what you’re doing and you can ditch the looms.
Step Three: You Are a Mother-Trucking ASSASSIN
At level 10, for the love of Gawd, go with Assassination. Seriously. This is why you got two heirloom daggers, instead of one dagger and that agility mace you dumped in Void Storage after trying to level a confused enhancement shaman a year ago. Speaking of assassins …
Step Four: At level 60, choose Cloak and Dagger
THIS IS A VERY IMPORTANT STEP HERE. Seriously. It is especially useful if you, like me, are a compulsive looter who often gets left behind by chain-pulling tanks. Stealth (or Vanish if you must), target some poor mob trailing behind the tank, and BAM! NOW YOU’RE IN RANGE, MOTHER TRUCKERS! Shadowstep (which does not require that you Ambush or otherwise do something painful to your target) does not cool down quickly enough to make it worthwhile in comparison. This is especially true considering that YOU SHOULD AMBUSH NOW. Yes. Right now.
Note: try to let the tank hit the mob at least once before you hit Ambush. Otherwise you’ll Cloak-and-Dagger yourself into being a temporary tank, and that hurts, sometimes badly.
Step Five: FAN OF FREAKING KNIVES
At level 66, you get Fan of Knives. If there are a handful of mobs near you (which there probably will be, since you’ll almost certainly end up with a chain-pulling tank), you’ll be Fan of Knivesing a lot.
Note: try to let the tank get sufficient aggro before you go Fan of Knivesing all over the place. Otherwise, your fate is dependent on the group’s healer and your cooldowns. Good healer? You’ll be ok. Got Vanish at the ready? You’ll be fine. Panicked at the sudden onslaught of damage and forgot about Vanish as a result, or was the healer busy texting since they didn’t actually expect you to do something stupid? Welcome to Deathtown, party of rogue.
Step Four: A Glowy Button Appears
At level, uh, 70, enjoy the glowy stabbity button provided by Blindside. Glowy buttons are the best.
I feel like there should be a step five, but I can’t think of one.