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Rogue PvP Gear – How to Gear Up Correctly

How to Gear Enchant and Reforge any Rogue in WoW PVP
for Season 16 (Warlords Season 1)

Mists of Pandaria Rogue PvP Gear, not just for SubtletyAbout this guide: This guide was originally a collaborative effort between Phluxy and Nahj of Skill Capped. All of Skill Capped’s written guides are available for free, and they  encourage reposted as long as a link back is included.

GotWarcraft Note: This guide was originally for Patch 5.2 Subtlety Rogue PvP Gear. We’ve updated it to add Assassination and Combat details, as well as current info.  Obviously this guide assumes that you are level 100 and want to kick some player butt. If you’re not 100 yet then see our rogue leveling guide. You can also find the original gear page on Skill-Capped.

As far as the gear goes, the main changes in Warlords are these

  • Resilience is dead, so are Hit, Expertise, and Reforging.
  • PvP Power is also dead, it’s replaced by a two tier rating system. Any given piece will have one rating for PvE and a much higher rating for PvP.
  • For the changes in Warlords see our Rogue Changes post.
  • Not just Sub: We’re also added notes for Assassination and Combat RoguesIn Warlords with all the ability squishing and removed abilities Combat is looking like the “Flavor of the Month,” with Sub not far behind. Assassination lags behind both, but can still do well if that’s your spec.

Table Of Contents

This page

  1. Stat Priority – The stats you need.
  2. Gems
  3. Enchants
  4. Getting Started – You’re freshly level 90, start here.
  5. Honor Gear – The grind for gear.
  6. Conquest Gear – So, you’re pretty good now.
  7. The Best Subtlety Rogue PvP Gear
  8. Subtlety Rogue PvP Professions
Other Rogue Guides


PvP Stat Priority for Rogues

Rogue in Season 13 Tyrannical PvP GearKeeping your stats in the proper order is important. For example, too much Hit gives you nothing and takes away from stats that do give you value. Having the correct stats will give you an edge over someone who does not.

Warlords note: Hit and Expertise are dead. (And so is reforging.) You also have two new stats, Versatility and Multistrike. Bliz has also introduced something called “Attunement” which is where every spec of every class has one stat which Bliz has decided is “best” for whatever it is they do. As a result they get a 5% bonus to that stat from all sources.

Also note that Agility no longer adds to crit rating, but as an Agility class you get a 10% crit bonus anyway.

Stat Priority

PvP Power is last in all cases. These are Mists of Pandaria stats. I’ll update when the values of the new stats are known and things have sorted out a bit.

  • Subtlety: Mastery > Multistrike >= Versatility > Crit > Haste
  • Assassination: Mastery > Crit > Multistrike >= Versatility > Haste
  • Combat: Mastery > Multistrike > Haste > Crit  =Versatility

*Mastery note: There is an argument that Mastery is #1 for Sub, due to added damage for the finishers, despite the 5.4 nerf to Eviscerate. This would make Mastery #1 out of Mastery, Haste, and Crit for all Rogues.

Ideal Stat Gains

These are the stats you will focus on. In this section, you will find a list of stats along with their descriptions; stats are ordered based on their importance. While gearing, you should focus on achieving the following stats based on this priority hierarchy:

While the ability notes are for Subtlety, the general idea of the stats is fine for all.

Agility increases your Attack Power. Note that as Sub you get a 15% bonus to all Agility, in addition to your leather armor bonus, which make this stat just that much more important than it is for other Rogues. Note that in Warlords there are no Agility gems or enchants. Sub Rogues value Agility even more than Cbt and Assassination, since they get a nice Agility bonus with Sinister Calling that the other Rogues do not.

Critical Strike hits, in PvP, do 150% damage, not 200%. Critical Strike increases the likelihood of solid damage output with abilities such as Shadow Dance and Find Weakness.  Once you reach a Crit level of 20% or above, other stats should be accumulated, although anywhere from 20-23% is appropriate, depending on preference.

  • Combat puts less value on Crit, as nothing procs from it.
  • Assassination likes Crit, due to the extra Combo points generated by your Seal Fate ability.

Mastery – Subtlety Rogue mastery, Mastery: Executioner, increases the effectiveness of all of a Rogue’s Finishing Moves, or in other words, abilities that spend combo points (Recuperate is not affected by mastery.) A high percentage of Sub. damage comes from the Finishing Moves, including the sustained pressure from Slice and Dice, along with the significant burst potential from Eviscerate, our hardest hitting ability when Find Weakness is applied to our kill target.

  • Assassination ranks their Mastery > Crit/Haste and maybe above Agility.
  • Combat also likes Mastery, partly for the energy return from the extra off-hand strikes.

Haste increases any Rogue’s attack speed and increases the energy regeneration rate.  While faster attack speed does increase Sub’s damage output, the amount of haste required to increase that burst (ie – an extra Ambush during our Shadow Dance from a faster energy regeneration rate) would require too much secondary stat allocation and might only be barely achievable in gear.

  • Combat Values Haste more than Sub as it directly generates more off-hand energy procs, from your Combat Potency.
  • Assassination also values Haste due to faster Poison effects, doing more damage in less time and also restoring more energy over time.

Multistrike gives you one chance at an additional strike (and it can be any strike) at 30% effect. Any of these strikes can proc anything that the primary strike might proc, such as poison application, and they can also crit. It’s the extra poison application that improves it’s value, relative to Crit.

  • Any off-hand multistrikes can also proc Combat’s Combat Potency (for extra energy.)

Versatility is a straight up increase to any damage, and healing, that you do and also reduces damage (at half value.) No procs, no randomness, just straight up more damage and more survival. Not bad.



Rogue PvP Gems

There is no PvP gemming in Warlords Season 1. The gems shown below are for PvE gear or for pre-Warlords gear. The gems actually, exist, the sockets (on PvP gear) do not.

Secondary stat gems (eg: Haste) have twice the value of primary stats or PvP stats (20 Vs 10.)

Warlords note: The stat squish is in. Gems that were worth 160 Ag points in Mists are now worth 10. Gems that provided Hit are now Crit, gems that provided Expertise are now Haste. Resilience gems still show Resilience, but it doesn’t actually count.

Here are some recommendations for level 90 or lower gear: 

If sockets ever become available all Rogues should gem for Mastery.

Gems for Warlords of Draenor
Prismatic Greater Multistrike Taladite: +50 MultiStrike
Multistrike Taladite: +35 Multistrike
Greater Mastery Taladite: +50 Mastery
Mastery Taladite: +35 Mastery

Mists of Pandaria Gems, for gear under ilevel 600.
Meta Agile Primal Diamond: 14 Agil & 3% Increased Crit Effect
Red Delicate Primordial Ruby: 10 Agility
Yellow Quick Sun’s Radiance: 20 Haste
Fractured Sun’s Radiance: 20 Mastery
Blue Rigid River’s Heart: +20 Crit
Lightning Wild Jade: +10 Haste and +10 Crit
Orange Adept Vermilion Onyx: 5 Agility, 10 Mastery
Purple Glinting Imperial Amethyst: 5 Ag, 10 Crit
Green Sensei’s Wild Jade: +10 Crit and +10 Mastery
Cogwheel Smooth Tinker’s Gear: 38 Crit – requires an engie helm, such as this.
Precise Tinker’s Gear: 38 Haste
Fractured Tinker’s Gear: 38 Mastery


Rogue PvP Enchants

Short on gold? If you want to buy the gems, above, the best enchants, fund all of your alts, donate to the guild, etc., but don’t have the cash, then see what the Tycoon Addon can do about about improving your situation.

Warlords Notes: There are no head enchants, all shoulder enchants come from the Inscription profession and are only for items under item level 600. There are new enchants for Neck, Cloak, Weapons, and your Rings. Not for any other pieces. (Not yet, anyway.)

All Rogues should enchant for Mastery.

Ranged wpns
  • not applicable
Main and off hands


  • Enchant Cloak – Gift of Mastery: +50 Mastery
  • As with the rings, there are similar “breath of…” enchants which add +30 to the stat and will likely be much cheaper.


  • Enchant Neck – Gift of Mastery: +50 Mastery
  • As with the rings, there are similar “breath of…” enchants which add +30 to the stat and will likely be much cheaper.
Rings Warlords

Other enchants, for gear under item level 600.



Getting Started with Your Rogue’s PvP Gear

Human Rogue in Season 13 Tyrannical Elite PvP GearThis section is geared towards people who have just hit 100, or have an under-geared alt that needs to be primed for beginning the PvP gear grind.

Upon achieving level 100, we do NOT advise you to just jump into an Arena, or start grinding Battleground’s, or do any sort of PvP for that matter fresh off of leveling in your leveling items. Chances are many of the enemies in a Battleground will significantly out-gear your fresh level 100, which means they will have a significant advantage over you in a PvP setting.

Something that we promise will save you a lot of grief, speed up your grind, and make your PvP experience that much more enjoyable is to obtain crafted PvP gear right away.

Warlords Season 1 (Season 16) Gearing

Hit, Expertise, PvP Power and Resilience are dead. You will want a PvP trinket, esp. if you don’t already have one. Get this one. Need gold for all of this stuff? See our gold guide.

At 100 those crafted pieces will still be the best, but you might be able to find PvE items on the AH to replace other items. There is no “crafted PvP gear” as there has been in previous seasons.

PvP gear in WoD has two ratings, one for PvE, the other for PvP. For example, the Honor gear is 620/675. The second number applies to any PvP that you do and is higher than any PvE gear that you’re likely to get.

PvE gear is uprated in instanced PvP to 650, but the PvP gear starts at 660 and so is clearly better.

If you have PvE gear, in any given slot, that’s better than the PvP rating on your price, then use it.

There are actually three tiers of PvP gear in Warlords.

  1. Primal Aspirant is ilevel 600/660 and is found in strongboxes won from the BGs or Ashran PvP events. It can also be found as “Warforged,” which adds 6 item levels. This gear can only be found in the strongboxes.
  2. Primal Combatant is the honor gear. It’s 620/675 and can also be Warforged. This gear can be bought, awarded from your Gladiator’s Sanctum work orders, or found in strongboxes.
  3. Primal Gladiator is the Conquest gear and is 660/690. It cannot be Warforged.

Every gear slot has two options for the honor gear and three, with sufficient faction rep, for the Conquest gear. Only one of those options come with a set bonus, the others do not. For example:

  1. Primal Gladiator’s Leather Tunic – Set piece, Mastery & Multistrike.
  2. Primal Gladiator’s Tunic – non set, Crit & Multistrike
  3. Primal Gladiator’s Chestguard – rep piece, no set bonus, Haste & Versatility.

The Set Bonuses

The head, chest, shoulders, legs and gloves are the set pieces, but not all pieces have set bonuses.

  • (2) Set (Assassination, Combat, Subtlety): Successfully interrupting a spell with Kick generates 3 combo points.
  • (4) Set (Assassination): When you use Vanish, you gain 5 Combo Points and the critical strike chance of your next Mutilate, Dispatch, Envenom, or Ambush is increased by 100%.
  • (4) Set (Combat): Increases the duration of Killing Spree by 1 sec.
  • (4) Set (Subtlety): Feint also increases your Versatility by 910 for 5 sec.

Assassination definitely wants the 4 piece set bonus. Combat and Sub Rogues who kick a lot will certain want at least the 2 piece bonus, and likely the 4 piece as well.

Should You Get the Honor Gear?

Yes. It will be a very large step up from any previous season gear that you might have and the PvP rating will be better than any PvE gear that you’re likely to get.

Gearing up with Honor and Conquest

The old way of gaining honor was to do BGs. Conquest points could be earned through winning rated BGs and Arena matches. In Warlords you also can gain both from your Gladiator’s Sanctum and various Ashran events.

The Ashran PvE events award both Honor and Conquest points. You earn Artifact fragments from killing players and any of the Ashran mobs or NPCs. Hand the fragments in at your base for Rep with your leader’s faction. Ultimately you will want to earn at least Revered rep for the best gear options. You will earn bones from killing players and these are turned in at your garrison Gladiator’s Sanctum.

Honor pieces have two choices available for each slow that isn’t a weapon, ring, or trinket. Conquest has three items available if you have Revered rep with your faction.

  • Sub and Combat ideally want gear with Mastery & Multistrike.
  • Assassination wants gear with Mastery & Crit.

The gear shown is the Conquest gear, but comparable honor pieces have the same stats.

Get your weapons ASAP, then the set pieces, next the DPS trinket, then the enchantable pieces (cloak, neck, rings,) then the rest. Save the escape trinket for last since you already have one, right?

Combat and Sub should go for these set pieces: Chest, Shoulders, Gloves, Legs, and the reputation Head. Honor people can grab the set piece head, too.

Assassination should grab these set pieces: Chest, Shoulders, Head, Legs, and the non-set gloves. Honor people can do the same. 

  1. Chest: Primal Gladiator’s Leather Tunic – Set piece, Mastery & Multistrike.
  2. Legs:
    1. Primal Gladiator’s Leather Legguards – set piece, Mastery & Crit
    2. Primal Gladiator’s Legguards, non set, Mastery & Multistrike
  3. Head:
    1. Primal Gladiator’s Leather Helm, set piece, Crit & Multistrike
    2. Primal Gladiator’s Headcover, rep piece, Mastery & Versatility
  4. Shoulders: Primal Gladiator’s Leather Spaulders, set piece, Mastery & Haste
  5. Gloves:
    1. Primal Gladiator’s Leather Gloves, set piece, Multistrike & Haste
    2. Primal Gladiator’s Gloves, non set, Mastery & Haste

The rest of the pieces:

  1. Boots: Primal Gladiator’s Boots of Victory, rep piece, Mastery & Versatility
    1. Honor boots: Primal Combatant’s Boots of Prowess, Haste + Multistrike
  2. Belt: Primal Gladiator’s Belt of Cruelty, Mastery & Multistrike
  3. Bracer: Primal Gladiator’s Bindings of Cruelty, Mastery & Haste
  4. Ring #1: Primal Gladiator’s Ring of Cruelty, Mastery & Crit
  5. Ring #2: Primal Gladiator’s Ring of Prowess, Mastery & Haste
  6. Neck: Primal Gladiator’s Necklace of Prowess, Mastery & Haste
  7. All weapons are Mastery & Crit
  8. DPS Trinket #1: Primal Gladiator’s Badge of Conquest, +Agility & “On use” Agility
  9. DPS Trinket #2: Primal Gladiator’s Insignia of Conquest, Agility Proc, for humans and those who like to live dangerously (no escape trinket.)
  10. Escape trinket: Primal Gladiator’s Medallion of Cruelty, +Crit




Important Warlords Note: all of the professions bonuses are dead, including the extra sockets, synapse springs, etc.

With no stat increases to shoot for you should pick a profession based on what you enjoy or find useful.

That being said, here are the best professions for a Rogues in Mists of Pandaria PvP:

Engineering – Various cool and useful toys. Nitro Boosts are the greatest things since sliced bread, but unusable in Arenas or Rated Battlegrounds. Ditto rockets, shields, and other useful items.

Blacksmithing – Potentially you can get nicer weapons ahead of the curve, as well as make keys and a few other possibly useful items.

Leatherworking – Make your own armor, which has some value while you’re leveling. You can make level 90 PvP armor to sell to other players or send to alts.

Herbalism/Skinning/Mining – Pretty much just for the gold.

Good Luck!

This guide originally was a collaborative effort between Phluxy and Nahj, produced by SkillCapped. This page has been and updated to Warlords and beyond by GotWarcraft. All of the Skill Capped written guides are available for free.

We hope this answers every question you’ve ever had about Subtlety Rogue Gear in Season 15, and is used as a reference point for your quest to obtain the best PvP gear out there. Let us know if we missed anything, or if there is something you need cleared up in the comments below, and we’ll be sure to get back to you!

14 thoughts on “Rogue PvP Gear – How to Gear Up Correctly”

  1. Hi, I’m curious what your thoughts are on my gear choices as I prep for RBGs and Arena. My freshly minted level 90 sub rogue is basically all Grevious and i535/539 Timeless Isle gear. I’m having a difficult time convincing myself replacing those remaining TI pieces with Grevious ones, is a good idea. Obviously, what it comes down to is, does the PvP power I’ll receive from Grevious gear (including set bonus PvP power) outweigh the natural agi/ap and health I’ll be losing from the i535/539 gear?

    My rogue






    1. I missed the “all PvE gear is downgraded to i512 in instanced PvP”. DUR! Is this still the case? I’m sorry, I’m sorta just returning and feel as though I’m having to relearn a whole new game.

      1. It’s changed. For season 15 the downrating is a lot less (it’s downrated to 528 this week) and I’ll update the page. For World PvP your 535/539 stuff is at least as good as the Grievous gear. For BGs and Arena your PvE gear is, currently, a bit less than the Grievous gear. In a couple of weeks it’ll probably be better (which I think is a mistake on Bliz’ part, but oh well.)

        I use the equipment manager to swap sets back and forth. I have a PvE set and a PvP set. If nothing else the two sets let me keep my Hit and Expertise correct for whatever I’m doing.

        As for the game, well, it’s basically the same game. It’s just that gear is ramping up faster than in previous expansions. In Warlords they’re going to do an item squish, so that ramp will be a lot flatter. I expect a lot of QQing, then people will get used to it.

    2. I figure that PvE gear around 10-15 ilevels higher than the PvP gear is more or less equal. I think it depends on how much your spec values its primary stat, and Sub (if that’s you) values Agility a lot. So for instanced PvP (BGs & Arena) your 535 gear (if it wasn’t downrated) would be equal to or better than the 522 Grievous gear, esp. for Sub.

      I’ll leave a note on your other comment, too.

      1. So, to be sure I understand allow me to summarize and add what I think you mean. “I figure that PvE gear around 10-15 ilevels higher than PvP gear is more or less equal (in instanced PvP)”

        “So for instanced PvP (BGs & Arena) your 535 gear (if it wasn’t downrated) would be equal to or better than the 522 Grievous gear, esp. for Sub. But it is downgraded. Therefore, it is not equal to 522 Grevious”.

        Am I warm?>

        Thanks for a rapid reply. Btw, love the site.

        1. Yes, very warm. I checked today, the gear is down rated to 528 currently, so Grievous is definitely better. Eventually it will be 540, but by that time maybe you’ll have the Prideful gear.

          “Btw, love the site.” Thanks. 🙂 Comments, feedback, and suggestions are always appreciated.

  2. Any idea what the hit cap/expertise cap would be at level 85 (for a twink 85 rogue). Particularly since that bracket is still effected by scaling.

    1. It’s the same 3%, it’s just that you need fewer rating points to hit that level. As you go up in level the % cap does not change, just the number of points to get to it. Of course, the higher level gear comes with more points.

      Bring up your character pane in game, hover over your “Hit chance,” and you’ll see your total Hit rating, as a %, and your chance to miss. 3% gets you level 85’s, 7.5 gets you to 88, and for that 90 sneaking up on you you probably need 10%.

  3. Hello, The “here is a link” link in the getting started section does not work. Great guild otherwise. Also what are your thoughts on tailoring as a profession?

    1. Sorry, but I can’t find the link you’re referring to.

      Tailoring: Tailoring has a nice Attack Power proc, 4k worth, and you’ll be able to make a flying carpet. It’s probably better for PvE, where the procs average out over a long fight. They’ll work out to about that 320 Agility over a long fight. The recommended professions either have a cooldown (Eng.) or “always on” stats (Blacksmithing, JC, etc.) so they’re always there when you need them. I’ll update the page with notes for the other profs.

      Besides, why would a Rogue take tailoring? 😉

      BTW – thanks for the nice words.

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