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Thread: Rift Sab How-to (build and rotation tips, 1.2)

  1. #1
    Shadowlander
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    Default Rift Sab How-to (build and rotation tips, 1.2)

    This isn't "my build" or "my spec", but I've been using Sab even before the patch and feel I have a very workable knowledge of it. What I find most often with new rogues is that they just don't know the subtler apsects of the rotations and end up flubbing it for one reason or another. This guide is an attempt to help other potential Sabs avoid those pitfalls.

    I hit 1000 single-target, pet-free ranged dps reliably with raid buffs, whetstone, and powersurge. I have 4 pieces of elder gear, but no raid gear.

    Take this spec:
    http://rift.zam.com/en/stc.html?t=0M...b.VV0cEb0koR.M
    Add 13 more points into the Sab as you wish - you want 44 total to get High Explosives.

    Minor dps increases that you should probably pick are:
    • Bomb Specialist (you will use bombs, though immediate direct damage is not huge)
    • Improved Blast Charge (I use bombs more than blast charge, but there are rare situations it's an increase to have improved)
    • At least some points in Long Range Bombing can be helpful for raids where positioning requirements make extra range helpful.

    Key points:
    • Residual Shrapnel makes Shrapnel leave a 6 second dot. With this, Shrapnel is better than Blast Charge, even on single target fights.
    • Improved Spike Charge gives you a long-lasting dot. This dot will last through 2 sets of detonates. Do not detonate your next spike too soon. This also is the main reason why pure sets work better than mixing charges. If you mix a single spike in with another set of charges it will OVERWRITE any other spike dot you have on the target. This is a dps loss.
    • Mines/traps and bombs are generally not worth the global cooldown to use them. There is one exception in a spec'ed Anihilation bomb (see below). There are a very few other specialized situations, but even then the gain is questionable.

    **Single target rotation:**

    Prep target with 5 charges and Expose Weakness.
    I almost always Incriminate the tank at the start of a fight, so I choose Shrapnel as it will do the most damage within Incriminate's duration. However, if your tank threat is solid, starting with 5x spike will likely lead to more damage overall.

    The main rotation alternates 5x shrapnel, 5x spike. Note that both shrapnel and spike have dot components. The number one mistake that new Sabs make is that they detonate their next 5-stack too soon. This is called "clipping your dots" and is a dps loss. Watch your target's debuffs. If you're about to detonate a 5-stack of spikes, wait until the dot from the last set has disappeared before detonating your new set. Think of it this way - if you detonate early, you lose that last tick of damage, which can be 600-1000 damage. You will pool up energy for 1-2 seconds but this is fine because you will easily use that when building your next stack.

    **AoE rotation (4+ mobs):**

    With true AoE (4+ targets), you will usually just want to repeat a 5x stack of shrapnel. This is the simplest approach and it performs quite well. Incriminating on your first detonate will help glue the mobs to your tank as well - a seldom recognized but significant aid to your group.

    **AoE rotation (2-3 mobs):**

    With many trash packs you're dealing with 2-3 mobs instead of full-blown AoE. Sab actually has a nice mechanic that works well with this size group. This comes from the talent Demolition Specialist. Basically, it allows you to use Anihilation Bomb to spread a 5x stack of spikes to up to 3 targets. Putting this in your rotation looks like:

    5x spike prep
    Incriminate
    Anihilation Bomb (note the side effect of a stun, which can be useful for lesser-geared tanks or healers)
    -- spikes are now ticking on 3 targets -- make sure your tank is putting threat on all three!
    5x shrapnel / det
    Carpet bombing -- removes the cooldown for the next 3 bombs. Allows the 5x spike / bomb trick to last through most trash pulls
    5x spike
    Anihilation Bomb
    5x shrapnel / det
    (repeat spike/shrap pattern as long as bombs are available)
    Finish up with 5x shrapnel if Anihilation bomb is not available and while there is more than 1 target.

    Hint: Macro incriminate to your main tank. If it's macro'ed, you'll use it. If it's not, you'll likely not bother with the trouble. Here is what I use:

    #show Incriminate
    target MyMainTank
    cast incriminate
    targetlasttarget

  2. #2
    Ascendant Dinadass's Avatar
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    Good info. The only thing I'd add is this: Sometimes you will be waiting for a few seconds to detonate Spike while your previous one expires. If you are going to hit 100 energy before the dot wears off, go ahead and toss an Expose Weakness up so you don't waste energy regeneration. If you're still going to hit 100 energy after doing this (which I've never had happen, but maybe you just had a bard pop Verse of Joy or something) you should toss a Frag Bomb or something.

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  3. #3
    Rift Disciple Reamerer's Avatar
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    good guide. i do the melee equivalent (/2nb instead of /2rng) and hit 1400 on plutonus, 1250 on LGS, etc.
    as mentioned, not clipping dots is key to dps, else the rotation is balls easy. i like it.

  4. #4
    Rift Master
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    Your rotation is off a little....

    5x spike prep
    Incriminate
    Anihilation Bomb (note the side effect of a stun, which can be useful for lesser-geared tanks or healers)
    -- spikes are now ticking on 3 targets -- make sure your tank is putting threat on all three!
    DETONATE HERE
    5x shrapnel / det
    Carpet bombing -- removes the cooldown for the next 3 bombs. Allows the 5x spike / bomb trick to last through most trash pulls
    5x spike
    Anihilation Bomb
    DETONATE HERE
    5x shrapnel / det
    (repeat spike/shrap pattern as long as bombs are available)
    Finish up with 5x shrapnel if Anihilation bomb is not available and while there is more than 1 target.

  5. #5
    Shadowlander
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    Konji, thank you for the correction - you're absolutely right.

  6. #6
    Sez
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    Two alternatives for the ranger are of course 2nb and 2rs. My guildie likes the 2rs (because he is kinda slow at dodging mechanics, and the plane shift is nice "uh oh" button)


    Also, I don't know if it makes any dps difference, but I've been working in a baneful touch once a minute for my spike x5 > annihil > Baneful Touch. (then switch on Poison malice)

    Again, not sure if its an increase, but that's what I was doing.
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  7. #7
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    Been using this spec for a couple days and its good for dungeons. I dont see why allowing your spike charge to keep ticking is a dps increase since you loose the damage from detonate, high explosives, charge booster and any other proc you have (trinket, essence, runes, poisons). Until I get a bard to give me fervor I cant say if its better or not since the dot wears off with no energy reduction.
    Last edited by Vindicit; 05-18-2011 at 01:16 AM.

  8. #8
    Soulwalker
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    Glad to see someone playing the Sab the way I am too. Especially thinking of the use of incriminate to help out the tank.

    But instead of investing further into the sab tree to get "High Explosives", how about investing at least 13 points into Bladedancer for the "Deadly Dance" ability. This gives your next 3 cp builders 105% dmg increase. Rotation is 5xcharge, pop into mellee range and use "Deadly Strike", then spam charges and detonates according to your build, only interrupted by the occasional Deadly Strike (I think it's bugged for Sabs atm and gives 105% to every charge for 15 secs...)

    This will ofcourse make your dps a bit smaller in ranged fights, but much higher in melleefriendly encounters.

    Views?

  9. #9
    Rift Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by RookieNO View Post
    Glad to see someone playing the Sab the way I am too. Especially thinking of the use of incriminate to help out the tank.

    But instead of investing further into the sab tree to get "High Explosives", how about investing at least 13 points into Bladedancer for the "Deadly Dance" ability. This gives your next 3 cp builders 105% dmg increase. Rotation is 5xcharge, pop into mellee range and use "Deadly Strike", then spam charges and detonates according to your build, only interrupted by the occasional Deadly Strike (I think it's bugged for Sabs atm and gives 105% to every charge for 15 secs...)

    This will ofcourse make your dps a bit smaller in ranged fights, but much higher in melleefriendly encounters.

    Views?
    I have a Sabo(26)/BD(20)/SIN(20) build that takes advantage of this bug. Oddly enough I had this build before 1.2 came out but really hadn't use it (Cheap way to make yourself T2 ready with the dex buffs from both the Sabo & BD and the hit from the BD). In most T2 experts I can dish out insane DPS.

    Spike Charge X5 -> Blade Tempo -> Deadly Strike -> Keen Strike -> Detonate -> Shrapnal Charge X5 -> Deadly Strike -> Keen Strike -> Detonate -> Repeat (when the mob is close to death I go BD/SIN macro spamming)

    I've seen Spike Charge tick for over 1800 and I barely have T1 gear and my weapons are 26.5MH/26.2OH and 32.x Range. I'm around 550dex, 500ap, 650crit and 120hit in this build.

    But sadly this rotation takes advantage of a bug that I have no doubt will be fixed soon.

  10. #10
    Shadowlander
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vindicit View Post
    Been using this spec for a couple days and its good for dungeons. I dont see why allowing your spike charge to keep ticking is a dps increase since you loose the damage from detonate, high explosives, charge booster and any other proc you have (trinket, essence, runes, poisons). Until I get a bard to give me fervor I cant say if its better or not since the dot wears off with no energy reduction.
    Vindicit, since a Sab build is always energy capped (even with a 13% bard fervor), letting the dots tick for 2 more seconds before a detonate does not reduce the number of detonates, high explosives, or any other procs. Your number of actions per minute is identical.

    If you let energy build up for 1-2 seconds while that last spike tick happens, your next set of charges will eat up that energy gain and by the next detonate you're again waiting for energy for additional charges.

    If that still doesn't make sense, ask a question so I can see where I'm failing in the explanation.

  11. #11
    Rift Disciple Dungeoness's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Konji View Post
    ...
    Spike Charge X5 -> Blade Tempo -> Deadly Strike -> Keen Strike -> Detonate -> Shrapnal Charge X5 -> Deadly Strike -> Keen Strike -> Detonate -> Repeat (when the mob is close to death I go BD/SIN macro spamming)
    ...
    You only need to use Deadly and Keen (or Backstab, Puncture etc.) after your first charge rotation, BTW. Deadly Dance will last long enough, and apply its buff to your subsequent Shrapnel rotation. Even under power starved conditions, unless you are really slow.
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  12. #12
    Telaran
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    I have yet to play sab, but I was thinking about picking it up for a change of pace.... and while this may sound idiotic, can someone tell me why you're picking up poison potency? Are charges considered poison?

  13. #13
    Prophet of Telara Raynald's Avatar
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    I feel like I`m doing something wrong here...

    I`m using 44sab/2ran/rest sin and not clipping my dots, but my ACT still shows me at only around 700ish dps. I am also still relatively energy starved even with fervor running.

    Any tips?

  14. #14
    Telaran
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    Macro suggestion I use two macros

    Macro1:
    focus @mouseover

    Macro2:
    cast @focus incriminate

    Hover over your tank and hit the first macro once you join the group it will maintain the focus on him until you die or they leave. Hitting the macro again with nothing targeted will clear the focus. Now macro2 will only cast incriminate on your focus target and you don't have to worry about targeting.

  15. #15
    Plane Walker Radamanthys's Avatar
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    Cool No macro need.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tamber View Post
    Hint: Macro incriminate to your main tank. If it's macro'ed, you'll use it. If it's not, you'll likely not bother with the trouble. Here is what I use:

    #show Incriminate
    target MyMainTank
    cast incriminate
    targetlasttarget
    More simple way: Go to setting, interface, (donte remember tab im at work) "Cast on target's target"
    That way all beneficial spells are casted to the tank!Work great on healers and Chloro.
    Plus when you solo you cast the spells on you...

    Apart from that, great guide!

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