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Thread: Crymoor's PvP Assassin Guide

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    Champion Rolemodel's Avatar
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    Default Crymoor's PvP Assassin Guide

    I am writing this simply because after having played on multiple different battle groups with a collection of, who I believe to be the best players in this game, (both Guardians and Defiants) it has come to my attention that many of the rogues in this game just aren’t playing to the best of their ability. I’m not calling any of these rogues out as being bad, just offering some strategies that I’ve picked up along the way that I feel might be helpful to my fellow rogues. I’m sorry if this guide doesn’t have anything useful to you, I kinda just play. Giving advice is easier when you watch me play rather than reading what I can remember to say.

    The first thing I would like to point out is that I am not an expert on any given spec. I have played virtually every spec there is, but that doesn’t mean I’m good at all of them. Most of the information in this “guide” of sorts will apply to Assassins, as I have the most play time (it’s either 30 or 60 days, I don’t remember, but far too much) invested into various 51 sin builds. Here is a list of my favorite sin specs:

    51sin/15inf/0rng
    51sin/15bd/0inf
    51sin/13bd/2rng
    51sin/10inf/5rng
    51sin/11inf/4rs
    51sin/15rs/0inf
    51sin/8nb/7rng
    51sin/11nb/4rs

    There are multiple other ones, but just to save space I’ve only listed a few.

    The Basics

    Now the first thing you have to understand when playing 51sin is that your subsouls play a much larger role in taking down your target(s) than most think. For this reason, 15inf/0rng is my favorite. It has the damage and [Cleanse Soul] for taking out multiple opponents and living to tell about it. Because it’s the most versatile, and the most fun (in my opinion) 15inf is the one spec I always keep handy. Now just because this is the most well rounded 51sin spec it doesn’t mean that you can rely on it to take down every player, 100% of the time. Although, I’ve yet to come across a player that I couldn’t eventually beat with it.

    Now, specs with Riftstalker as a subsoul are my go to for taking down other rogues. Specs with Bladedancer as a subsoul are great for when you can count on getting the jump on your target, and when they’re a squishy or one of those pesky warriors as well as rogues. Now, these tips don’t always apply, most of the specs listed get the job done on everything but geared, heal specced clerics. If you know you’re just an average player, I recommend learning how the different subsouls help you against various classes. It all depends on your level and style of play. I’m not going to talk about poisons, pick ones you like for each situation. They don’t break stealth. Don’t be afraid to switch poisons mid-fight. Also don’t be afraid to slow a melee enemy and kite away with your 0 ranger or 15 MM soul. Blah blah don’t forget to blind when you have adds, blah blah, your blinds can second as an interrupt, blah blah blah. Sorry.

    The most important thing a good assassin must have is situation awareness. You have to know what’s going on around you, where your enemies are, where your friends are, and what the chances of a zerg showing up to crash your party are (recon pots help a lot with this). I suggest scanning the area before you open, and while fighting, because dying sucks and I don’t like to do it.

    Now, I’ll try to be humble and say that I have been recognized for playing sin. Others have come to me for help, and while I can help some of them, I can’t help everyone because often they don’t know what they’re struggling with. I’ll try to cover everything that I feel is a problem for some newer sins.

    Gear

    Gear is VERY important as a sin. Mainly due to our lack of a poison that applies a heal debuff, and this requires us to spend a gcd when fighting a healer, gcd which could be used for much needed damage. Gear is also important because rogues received a recent buff which makes AP much more useful for a sin, crit has always been our bread and butter. AP now has increased contribution to our poisons, backstab, and now other abilities scale with it. Crit is important because, well, it makes sh*t hurt more. Often the outcome of a fight could be changed by a 1k serpent strike, or a 2k serpent strike. I also run with ~126 hit because it really helps against those rogues that like to spec into sidesteps and nightblade, those warriors that think they’re good because they have a shield, and those justicars that are just a pita and my toughest fight as a sin. If 1v1 is your focus you can afford to lose more valor to get the damage you need, most non-healing targets will drop fairly quickly and won’t be able to react. I run with 1000 valor because 1v1 is not enjoyable to me anymore, I prefer odds a bit more “unfair”. Often what I find is that most PvPer’s neglect hit, so this is a good place to start. It really does make a huge difference. Keep two sets of gear for attacking low damage targets, and high damage targets if at all possible. Also keep a few trinkets for different targets. If you’re trying to bring down a healer, a trinket with a damage absorb active and endurance isn’t going to do much to help. However some extra AP/Vengeance and an extra self-applying dot will.

    *PvP essences are not good just because they have valor, the new essences offer far more reward than the blue PvP essences, and I still choose to use all 3 of the epic valor essences.


    Stealth and Openers

    Misuse of stealth is another common problem. I mentioned earlier how key positioning was, at least I think I did, and yet some rogues fail to understand that stealth doesn’t make you immortal. Just because you’re in stealth does not mean you can ride your enemy’s *** and expect not to get popped out. It doesn’t mean you can sit idly in a battle at codex while you select your ideal target. Hidden Veil will help, but it doesn’t help idiocy. AoE is everywhere on the battlefield, don’t move in until you’ve scoped everything out and know exactly what your plan for attack is. Also, opening from stealth is often done wrong as well. If you’re attacking a high ranked healer, pop poison malice, wait for your energy to fill back up, and instantly move in for expose weakness>jagged strike combo. You have got to be fast with this. You can make the two into a macro, but I don’t enjoy using macros. Remember to watch your energy bar, it cannot run out before your target dies. Applying expose weakness during a fight is not always worth it either. Paralyzing Strike, don’t do it. With anyone more than 5k HP you’re wasting your time. It’s simply ineffective when some of your best damage comes from your other two openers. Assassinate is best for finishing off a low HP opponent or someone without a lot of valor. Otherwise, Jagged Strike is better. I promise I’m not misleading you, if the fight is going to last more than 5sec Jagged Strike is better than Assassinate.

    Consumables

    Pots are good. Dexterity and Endurance are good. Cupcakes (Or those new AP cakes from Ember Isle) are good. However many people don’t use consumables such as Soul Remnant and Tempest Mirror’s. I LOVE them. Free 1k damage off the gcd? Yum. Free stun off the gcd? Delicious. The mirror can provide you the CC you need to ensure your target doesn’t get away right after the opener and also keeps you from messing up your burst rotation (because it’s off the gcd) which I will discuss later. Soul Remnant is almost necessary to take down a well-played healer. Sucks but it’s true. It’s always better to be over prepared for every situation you may find yourself in.

    Slip Away

    I could go on for days about Slip Away. I’ll try to keep it short and simple. It’s not just a defensive tool to save your ***, although it’s nice to have it if the need arises. It is also an offensive tool to get another hard hitting opener or reapply your bleeds. You used to be able to apply your bleeds, Slip Away, and keep them in combat with Expose Weakness while they died. You can no longer do that. That’s where kiting comes in handy, and where your stun becomes necessary to time perfectly right in certain cases. I hate Nightblades. Seems like just about every rogue feels it necessary to run around with 4 defensive immunes/drs/sidesteps. Slip Away is great for baiting the baddies who blow all their defensive cds at once. Simply bait, slip away, laugh, wait it out, and kill the now squishy rogue. When fighting healers it’s needed for the second opener (usually assassinate) needed to burst them down. When fighting s/b warriors packing a full heal it’s good to have it so you can apply your bleeds, get them down to 20%, foul play, slip away, and finish them off before they have time to react. This is where I’ll stop. But use of slip away plays a large part in deciding the good players from the bad.

    Cleanse Soul

    This is situational. Use it before you need to sneak away from the zerg on low HP. It’ll help with those nasty dots. Don’t forget that it renders the mages clones useless (those things hurt like hell otherwise). I’m getting tired of typing so I’ll cut this short as well.

    Timing Your Bleeds

    Do it. It’s necessary. You won’t be good without it. Sorry, but I’m being honest. Everything hitting in or close to the same timestamp is ideal. Hardly anyone backloads their damage as sin, and it’s very frustrating to watch all these people not playing to the best of their ability. I am no longer playing Rift, so I see no point in keeping this rotation to myself. Keep in mind I only use this for heal specced clerics and the occasional chloro:

    (Whispering Silence)>Poison Malice>Expose Weakness>Jagged Strike>Puncture>Impale>Savage Strike>Savage Strike>Foul Play>Anathema>Slip Away>Assassinate>Serpent Strike>Final Blow>Soul Remnant>Backstab>Dead Healer.

    *If I don’t use Whispering Silence(is that the name?) then I use the Cold Heart trinket from DH.

    Well, there’s some damn nice burst damage right there. Always makes me feel great when I pull it off. It’s quite difficult against a competent cleric, though. Hope I helped as much as I could.

    I probably didn’t say most of what I intended to say when I thought about writing this, and I’m sorry I don’t have video footage, but these are just a few things I picked up during my time in RIFT. I am no longer playing so a big thanks to everyone who helped me improve. The hundreds (maybe thousands? I had issues.) of hours I spent dueling and trying out different things were well worth it. I hope to see some of you in another game!

    Flame on. If you get really super mad maybe it’ll make it to my sig.
    Last edited by Rolemodel; 12-27-2011 at 10:37 AM.
    Crymoor/Crymor
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    *Reserved for edit I probably won't use because everyone else does it*
    Crymoor/Crymor
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    FYI, if you check off useable only at the PVP merchant, you can buy the warriors Purple lessers.

    I prefer running with a full +33 valor sigil, not that I run 51 sin.

    75str/75dex/58endurance/24ap/38crit/248valor
    Last edited by Swiftly; 12-27-2011 at 12:09 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swiftly View Post
    FYI, if you check off useable only at the PVP merchant, you can buy the warriors Purple lessers.

    I prefer running with a full +33 valor sigil, not that I run 51 sin.

    75str/75dex/58endurance/24ap/38crit/248valor
    Wow I can't believe I missed that. But I probably would use PvE lessers over those anyways. Not to worried about Endurance. But thanks! Wish I had known before now :P
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    Ascendant Gunzip's Avatar
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    I have around 236 hit in my assassin build, and it's not 51 points, I go up to 32 points and use 4x piece Hammerknell gear & crystal, with 18 points in Riftstalker with the last 16 points in nightblade for fellblades. There is not a single well geared cleric or Mage I can not kill with that specc so far. 51 Assassin is overrated, but not entirely in effectual.

    I just found all those 51 point speccs to be lacking against most competent P8 healers, but to each his own. Not a bad guide for the less experienced rogues, but for someone like me with my experience playing this class since day one with zero alts. I needed something far more offensive to suit my own aggressive playstyle.
    Quote Originally Posted by Muspel View Post
    I believe Assassin DoTs are uncleansable.

    It's still a terrible PvP spec compared to Marksman, though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gunzip View Post
    I have around 236 hit in my assassin build, and it's not 51 points, I go up to 32 points and use 4x piece Hammerknell gear & crystal, with 18 points in Riftstalker with the last 16 points in nightblade for fellblades. There is not a single well geared cleric or Mage I can not kill with that specc so far. 51 Assassin is overrated, but not entirely in effectual.

    I just found all those 51 point speccs to be lacking against most competent P8 healers, but to each his own. Not a bad guide for the less experienced rogues, but for someone like me with my experience playing this class since day one with zero alts. I needed something far more offensive to suit my own aggressive playstyle.
    Unfortunately I never really got into raiding in any game, so I don't have that kind of damage available to me. However, I have never encountered a mage I couldn't beat 1v1 and only decked out clerics have a chance at making me sweat. (No heal siphon changes things a bit)

    I have also been playing my rogue exclusively since beta and just play the spec that I enjoy. The reason I don't play a spec similar to yours is that I enjoy seeing huge numbers rolling down my screen all at once (and the qq that comes with it). The spec best at that is 51sin, so that's what I play.

    Many veteran rogue players will know most of this, except maybe my rotation, and I only say that because I don't ever come across any other good rogues playing 51sin. Likely due to the same reasons that you listed. You can only drop a p8 cleric every two minutes, and that is simply not attractive. to many people.

    To the average player, this spec will not be effective. Luckily, I made it effective and enjoyable for over a year.

    Thanks for the reply!
    Last edited by Rolemodel; 12-27-2011 at 03:12 PM.
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    You forgot the 51/10/5 Sin/MM/RS.

    Massive burst and really will just dominate anyone who can't consistently heal really well and isn't in p7-p8 gear flat out.

    Opener will pop 25% AP from MM, and you have the flat 15% from RS. SS, BS, FB after that and it's normally gg under 7k hp.

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    Soulwalker
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    i love sin too,
    but in reality it is difficult to give permenant stun and high burst damage at the same time
    and also there are lots of cd skills to break or resist cloud control and make sin difficult to play

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    Quote Originally Posted by DTM300 View Post
    You forgot the 51/10/5 Sin/MM/RS.

    Massive burst and really will just dominate anyone who can't consistently heal really well and isn't in p7-p8 gear flat out.

    Opener will pop 25% AP from MM, and you have the flat 15% from RS. SS, BS, FB after that and it's normally gg under 7k hp.
    I actually never ran that. It sounds really interesting though. Kinda disappointed I never got to try it. Thanks!
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    Quote Originally Posted by hktony View Post
    i love sin too,
    but in reality it is difficult to give permenant stun and high burst damage at the same time
    and also there are lots of cd skills to break or resist cloud control and make sin difficult to play
    You don't need your target stunlocked in order to kill them. You lose all your killing power opening with a stun. I guess I'm not understanding what you're trying to say.
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    Ascendant Puzzlebox's Avatar
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    Crymoor knows his stuff.

    By the way, Crymoor. I'm on Jung Ma.
    r40 puzzlybox <rise of mayhem> whoo whoo
    r40 pizzabox wheeeeeeeee

    puzzlebox + apoth = <3 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lL4L4Uv5rf0

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rolemodel View Post
    I actually never ran that. It sounds really interesting though. Kinda disappointed I never got to try it. Thanks!
    Yea, it works well. Can also:

    Opener, foul play, impale, SS, BS, Punct, FB and that normally does the trick too with that spec. The FB lands as the stun wears off so anything but a break free or insta heal for like 3k+ normally means death.

    Impale with 3 cp just for increased FB damage. FB will only be 4 cp but again, normally death to anyone under 7k hp. Obviously throwing in EW and poison malice in there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Puzzlebox View Post
    Crymoor knows his stuff.

    By the way, Crymoor. I'm on Jung Ma.
    On the wrong side. I'm with Tempest Wolves on republic. I look forward to sucking against you.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Puzzlebox View Post
    Crymoor knows his stuff.

    By the way, Crymoor. I'm on Jung Ma.
    Why you play zergling side?

    I'm going to have to pewpew you once you start playing!

    Thanks for writing this up cry
    Last edited by Garethe; 12-27-2011 at 06:15 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garethe View Post
    Why you play zergling side?

    I'm going to have to pewpew you once you start playing!

    Thanks for writing this up cry
    No probs. Puzzle bailed on us again cause he wanted to play with Apo, Jean, and Ticonz!

    I can't even enjoy Warzones anymore btw, soooo much skill lag.

    EDIT: Stop making me derail my own thread!
    Last edited by Rolemodel; 12-27-2011 at 06:23 PM.
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