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Thread: Saboteur 1.8 guide

  1. #1
    RIFT Guide Writer
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    Default Saboteur 1.8 guide

    Sab is a bleed-based spec that does competitive ST DPS in 1.8 and excellent AE DPS. It gets most of its DPS from High Explosives (which procs off Bombs and stacks up to 3 on each target) and a charge-based bleed (which normally 6 gcds to apply). Given the cost of dropping charges & bleeds, Sab penalizes player heavily for making mistakes in the rotation.

    Build

    51 Sab / 10 MM / 5 RS - Zam isn't updated but put the points into AP in MM and RS.

    Skills/Glossary

    Core:

    Annihilation Bomb (AB)
    Caltrop Charge (Ca)
    Shrapnel Charge (Sh)
    Spike Charge (Sp)
    Blast Charge (Bl)
    Detonate (Det)
    Chemical Bomb (CB)
    Time Bomb (TB)
    Fragmentation Bomb (FB)

    Auxiliary:

    Incriminate
    Rapid Setup (RS)
    Carpet Bombing (CarBomb)
    Booby Trap

    Utility:

    Adhesive Bomb
    Choking Gas Bomb
    Shadow Shift
    Break Free

    Rotation

    Basic

    This is the quick-and-dirty simple rotations that will give you an idea how the spec plays. If you want to maximize DPS, read the later sections that explain how to use cooldowns, etc..

    Single Target: Time Bomb > Fragmentation Bomb > Spike Charge x5 > Detonate > Caltrop Charge x2

    Multiple Targets: Time Bomb > Fragmentation Bomb > Caltrop Charge x5 > Detonate > Shrapnel Charge x2

    These are DoT-heavy rotations, so you will need to mix it up with other charges on mobs that die quickly. This rotation is not optimal because it doesn't use Chemical Bomb, but is the best rotation to use for mobs that are moving (because Chemical Bomb doesn't follow mobs). When the rotation says "x2", it really means it! Only apply 2 charges. They will be detonated by the Frag Bomb in the beginning of the rotation.

    Template

    Opener: RS > Charge > AB > FB > CarBomb > AB x4

    This gets the bleeds from charges & HE rolling in as little as 4 GCDs. (RS > Charge can be done out of combat.)

    Sustained: TB > FB > CB > Charge x5 + 2 gcds

    This is the core rotation that you should become comfortable with. The 2 gcds are usually after applying 5 charges, but for the best AE rotation they are weaved into the 5 charges. This rotation is 10-secs to match the bleed timers and maintains all bleeds.

    FB & AB also act as finishers in 51 Sab, detonating all charges. So using Detonate is not strictly necessary.

    Cooldowns: AB > RS > Charge OR AB > CarBomb > AB x4 > RS > Charge

    Use these sequences in between rotations when RS/CarBomb are off CD. AB and RS share very similar timers. It is simplest to manage them together, and this method means AB acts as a finisher to detonate charges on the target at the end of the prior rotation.

    ST

    Spike is the best ST DPS charge, followed by Caltrop, Blast, and Shrapnel.

    Opener: RS > Sp > AB > FB > CarBomb > AB x4

    Sustained: TB > FB > CB > Sp x5 > Det > Cal

    Det does respectable ST DPS and FB detonates the (single) Caltrop charge.

    Cooldowns: AB > RS > Cal OR AB > CarBomb > AB x4 > RS > Cal

    We can be a little smart and clip the end of the sustained rotation. This avoids clipping the single-charge bleed at the end with Rapid Setup and saves 2 GCDs.

    Full (1 min):
    TB > FB > CB > Sp x5 > Det > Cal
    TB > FB > CB > Sp x5 > Det > Cal
    TB > FB > CB > Sp x5 > AB > RS > Cal
    TB > FB > CB > Sp x5 > Det > Cal
    TB > FB > CB > Sp x5 > Det > Cal
    TB > FB > CB > Sp x5 > AB > CarBomb > AB x4 > RS > Cal
    AE (simple)

    This is a simple version of the AE rotation that plays very similarly to the ST rotation. It should be the fallback if the Time Bomb AE rotation (below) isn't viable.

    Caltrop is the best AE DPS charge, followed by Shrapnel.

    Opener: RS > Cal > AB > FB > CarBomb > AB x4

    Sustained: TB > FB > CB > Cal x5 > Det > Sh

    Det is not a very good use of a GCD for AE DPS, and is one reason why this rotation suffers.

    Cooldowns: AB > RS > Sh OR AB > CarBomb > AB x4 > RS > Sh

    As before, clip the end of every third rotation:

    Full (1 min):
    TB > FB > CB > Cal x5 > Det > Sh
    TB > FB > CB > Cal x5 > Det > Sh
    TB > FB > CB > Cal x5 > AB > Rapid Setup > Sh
    TB > FB > CB > Cal x5 > Det > Sh
    TB > FB > CB > Cal x5 > Det > Sh
    TB > FB > CB > Cal x5 > AB > CarBomb > AB x4 > RS > Sh
    AE (Time Bomb)

    This rotation does fantastic AE DPS, but it requires cumbersome maintenance of Time Bomb on 3 targets. Accidentally applying Time Bomb to the same target may mean HE falls off, and there goes your DPS!

    Opener (same): RS > Cal > AB > FB > CarBomb > AB x4

    Sustained: TB > FB > CB > TB #2 > Cal x2 > TB #3 > Cal x3

    Each time Time Bomb is applied it should go on a separate target. Use mouseover to avoid having to switch from the main target & back within a GCD. (See macro section.) Time Bomb does decent DPS and procs HE, which is why this rotation is so powerful.

    Cooldowns: AB > RS > Sh OR AB > CarBomb > AB x4 > RS > Sh

    Do not clip rotations! Time Bomb is higher DPS per GCD than charges, it's not worth dropping Time Bombs to get Caltrop up-time. It may be worth dropping Cal x3, but I haven't played with that. (See this post.)

    Full (1 min):
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Cal x2 > TB 3 > Cal x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Cal x2 > TB 3 > Cal x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Cal x2 > TB 3 > Cal x3 > AB > RS > Sh
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Cal x2 > TB 3 > Cal x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Cal x2 > TB 3 > Cal x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Cal x2 > TB 3 > Cal x3 > AB > CarBomb > AB x4 > RS > Sh
    I have not found a real game situation where this rotation was reliable, but at least now you know it exists.

    Macros

    Sab isn't an easy spec to macro. You can manage to get Sab to very few buttons if you want, but you need to use different charges for AE vs. ST, and Chemical Bomb doesn't play nice with macros, etc.. I have personally found macros to be more a hindrance than a help, and I don't use very many.

    The easiest way to apply Time Bomb.

    Code:
    #show Time Bomb
    cast @mouseover Time Bomb
    This can be used to spam bombs at the start of the rotation, but personally I hate how GTAE works in macros so I don't use it myself. You also want Frag on its own button to open with anyway.

    Code:
    #show Chemical Bomb
    suppressmacrofailures
    cast Time Bomb
    cast Fragmentation Bomb
    cast Chemical Bomb
    My preferred way to manage Incriminate.

    Code:
    #show Incriminate
    suppressmacrofailures
    cast @mouseoverui Incriminate
    cast @focus Incriminate
    Other macros, like RS and CarBomb are possible, but I avoid them. The charge you want to use with RS is situational, and CarBomb is off gcd so macroing it with AB can cost you a proc of AB. It's really not that many buttons when you get the hang of it.

    Tips
    • Play Sab from range. That way you use ranged wep damage and get a nice DPS boost. (This is why using Barbed Trap in ST isn't a DPS gain.)
    • An exception to this is when mobs are nearly dead, moving into melee to spam Booby Trap can be a nice way to deal instant, spammable DPS without risking missed detonates / Time Bombs.
    • Be smart about using Rapid Setup and Carpet Bombing. If there are AE phases to the fight, save these cooldowns for when they are needed to maximize bleed time.
    • Be smart about applying bleed charges. If mobs are nearly dead, use Blast or Shrapnel.
    • Detonate does good damage single target, but Bomb + HE tick + Shrapnel Bomb does more. Therefore Detonate is something that should be avoided if you can help it.
    • In AE situations, one Sab in the raid should probably be maintaining Splinter Charge. The easiest way to do this is to use the "AE (simple)" rotation, and replace Shrapnel with Splinter. Don't use RS with Splinter, however. Instead, always complete the "Sustained" rotation and use cooldowns in between. For long fights, using RS > Splinter is an option that devotes fewer GCDs to splinter up-time and is probably a DPS gain.
    • If you are running in a group without Fervor/LE (god help us all), then TB > FB > CB > Charge x5 > Booby Trap x2 is barely energy starved.
    Last edited by Beckmann; 06-13-2012 at 08:31 AM. Reason: Add "Basic" section.
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  2. #2
    Plane Walker Enaki's Avatar
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    Nice guide, now people won't have to hunt through the 85 page thread.

    And seriously thanks to Beckmann who did far more than the rest of us not named Ailion or Daglar to get Sab back on track.

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    Champion of Telara Puandro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enaki View Post
    Nice guide, now people won't have to hunt through the 85 page thread.

    And seriously thanks to Beckmann who did far more than the rest of us not named Ailion or Daglar to get Sab back on track.

    /golf clap
    This, thanks.
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    Still looking horribly complicated, but will try and figure it out.

    Thanks so much for the tests and feedback Beckmann!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raynald View Post
    Still looking horribly complicated, but will try and figure it out.

    Thanks so much for the tests and feedback Beckmann!!!
    I know I'm biased, but I just don't see it. It's just learning one basic template that does ST & AE, and the cooldowns are just a cherry on top once you have it down. Maybe that's 50+ hours of parsing talking, though!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beckmann View Post
    I know I'm biased, but I just don't see it. It's just learning one basic template that does ST & AE, and the cooldowns are just a cherry on top once you have it down. Maybe that's 50+ hours of parsing talking, though!
    For the damage it does it is complicated. Still its alot of fun imo.

    One question, I'm prolly gonna feel stupid when I get the obvious answer. But what is the hard reason (particularly in an AE situation for pvp where you would use detonate more) for taking MM over Nightblade. Now yes the Nightblade passives only affect charges and detonate. But I must be misssing something obvious cause I don't see how 10 in marks does anything to help bombs or HE. I mean you have a increase to single target damage and the crit damage buff, but is it more cause of the use of the ranged weapon? Sorry for the probably dumb question.
    Last edited by Khelendross; 04-18-2012 at 10:24 PM.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Khelendross View Post
    For the damage it does it is complicated. Still its alot of fun imo.

    One question, I'm prolly gonna feel stupid when I get the obvious answer. But what is the hard reason (particularly in an AE situation for pvp where you would use detonate more) for taking MM over Nightblade. Now yes the Nightblade passives only affect charges and detonate. But I must be misssing something obvious cause I don't see how 10 in marks does anything to help bombs or HE. I mean you have a increase to single target damage and the crit damage buff, but is it more cause of the use of the ranged weapon? Sorry for the probably dumb question.
    The ranged wep is important, but the AP is also huge. HE and Bombs scale with AP. They do not scale from points in NB. Since bombs and HE are 70% of your damage in AE, its really important that they are affected by how you spend your talent points.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beckmann View Post
    The ranged wep is important, but the AP is also huge. HE and Bombs scale with AP. They do not scale from points in NB. Since bombs and HE are 70% of your damage in AE, its really important that they are affected by how you spend your talent points.
    Makes sense, thanks for the explanation.
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  9. #9
    Soulwalker
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    Can't wait to get home and re-animate my Sab build. It was the build I leveled with back in "vanilla" and the build I miss the most. All the useful tools that are at the Sab's disposal really makes this a fun build to play.

    Thanks for the work on this guide!

  10. #10
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    A parse (or two) to get an idea on ST-DPS would be great tho
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  11. #11
    Soulwalker
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    VERY confusing guide tbh not all of us are old veteran sab's why are you using shorts for EVERYTHING? i had to copy paste and rewrite it with full names to have a clue on what everything ment.

    thanks for the guide though.

  12. #12
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    Very nice guide. So beckman, how did you find it in game? I played Sab a bit last night to get a feel for it, first thing I noticed is while it's easy to have a good setup for single target and aoe dps on a dummy I'm still trying to figure out how best to setup macros/hotbars for sab as a whole.

    How do you personally setup all your hotbars for sab?
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  13. #13
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    Default problems wih CB

    First I wanted to say thanks for the guide. I also have a question or problem...the CB being GTAoE is giving me a hard time, can I remove it from my rotation and add in a second cal charge at the end? or is removing CB a huge dps loss? This question is for the ST rotation.

  14. #14
    Ascendant Mayi's Avatar
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    One more question.

    Has anyone done a comparison for if:

    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3 > AB > RS > Sh
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3 > AB > CarBomb > AB x4 > RS > Sh (or splinter if you're doing the aoe debuff)

    Is this a dps increase on your primary target if you're trying to burn down the primary target and it's surrounded by other mobs?
    Last edited by Mayi; 04-19-2012 at 09:48 AM.
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  15. #15
    Champion of Telara Puandro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mayi View Post
    One more question.

    Has anyone done a comparison for if:

    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3 > AB > RS > Sh
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3
    TB > FB > CB > TB 2 > Sp x2 > TB 3 > Sp x3 > AB > CarBomb > AB x4 > RS > Sh (or splinter if you're doing the aoe debuff)

    Is this a dps increase on your primary target if you're trying to burn down the primary target and it's surrounded by other mobs?
    Seeing as spike is better than caltrop than yes. But i dont feel the dps loss is worth it.
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