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Rogue (almost) killed creativity

I feel like creating a build for the Rogue means spec into Shift, spec into Decoy, spec into Smoke Bomb, then find two skills to spec into and that have good synergies.
Of course it’s not true for all builds, but it seems to be true for a vast majority. Other classes also have their mandatory-or-so skills, but I’m not sure it’s as blatant as for the Rogue.
The result for me is that the Rogue misses some variety. She is a very well designed class with impressive synergies in the passive trees and the skill trees, but these synergies seem to almost kill creativity around the class.
Am I missing something about her? Do you have good examples of builds that don’t rely on these three skills (or at least on two of them)? Or do you like her the way she is?

Tend to agree with you…

But I am wondering if its a factor of the skill balancing rather than anything else specifically…
Some of the skills are so good vs the others that its almost no brainer to select the same ones over and over… and I dont think this is Rogue specific… If some of the less used skills were “better” then the choice to give up something like Shift would be easier…

Granted there will alway be those Skills that are part of a class and tend to be used by most builds in that class… but I agree, one or two is fine… two or three definitely seems unfortunate…

I suppose it may be a research exercise to go through all @boardman21 (and others) builds in the compendium and see what the dominant skills end up being… if every Rogue is using the same 3 skills then maybe this needs some more thought…

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I disagree, the “mandatory” skills are just as blatant for other classes (Mage & Sentinel at least, nobody plays the Primalist so that’s ok). Would you play a Sentinel without Lunge/Shield Rush and Rive/Vengeance/Smite or a Void Knight without Anomaly?

I think the question here is around creativity vs “by design”

Imagine the build diversity if it were possible to have classes that didnt need to use the mandatory class skills while still being viable. Every single sentinel I have built uses Lunge because imho, the Initiative tree is simply too powerful to ignore - I dont chose it for its movement tag or skill damage.

Just spitballing here…

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Don’t think Shift should be included because that’s no different from other classes and their movement skills. Those are pretty much always mandatory.

As for mandatory skills, I’m okay with them being on the bar. I’m a bit more mixed when it comes to how they’re specced, though. If there’s really only one way to spec them, then I feel like that kills variety.

The game also doesn’t really seem to support any heavy combo-centric builds that have set rotations, so I don’t feel as bad about having 3 of my 5 slots kind of locked down. I’m going to be spamming something anyway, so only having 2 slots doesn’t bother me as much.


No, so I agree


No, so agreed again

Rive/Vengeance are damage skills, not support skills, that makes a difference.
For Mage, you’re right, Flame Ward is in many builds. But for mana, we have a choice between Focus and Mana Strike.

I can agree for alot of marksman builds that you run around with those 3 skills because they provide the best defensive setups. Decoy and Shift are the reason that you can stay away from enemies, Smoke Bomb gives you a massive defensive buff(Dusk Shroud/Silver Shroud). But to be fair those are also the only support Skills right now that you can use together with 1 or 2 offensive Skills. Right now the meta is either Detonating Arrow, Multishot or HoA.
If you wanna play a Poison build, Acid Flask is a good choice and cool interaction to proc with Shift. Smoke Bomb gives you a crazy amount of Bleed chance for Puncture. Dark Quiver is one of the most unique skill i have seen lately in any arpg. But it lacks some qol. The only really good skill with Dark Quiver is HoA because HoA is a DoT skill that you don’t have to cast constanly. So it provides a strategic way of playing and positioning.
For Crit builds its awkward to play since you get one big dmg boost after picking up a black arrow, then you have to move to the next one. During this time you could cast 2-3 more Bow attacks which would provide more dmg. So Dark Quiver maybe needs a stacking ability to become more comfortable for other builds. Dark Quiver is also a good use for Cinder Strike with the 15% kill threshold on high hp bosses, but it’s not a good endgame skill.
I think the problem right now, at least for marksman, is that there are too many ‘‘Main Skills’’ and far less support skills to build around. I don’t see any reason to change or nerf Smoke Bomb and Shift, their skilltrees are well designed. For Decoy, we all know that its too strong :slight_smile:

That’s what I was about to say. I don’t think it’s so much that they are the mostest besterest support skills, but that they are just about the only support skills. I, personally, hate using Decoy, and usually forget to even click the hotkey. But, I still have it, because… what else is there to take? Perhaps they need to include some generic (available to all classes) passive/active support skills that we can spec into… maybe a Dodge skill, Parry, etc. Or give Sentinel a Block skill they can spec to add some flavor to that… #shrug

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The Rogue is a very well designed class, but it still lacks some diversity in support, that’s true. That’s why I exagerated and said it “killed creativity”: you have very little choice no to use all that.
And of course, it’s always boring to “shoot and flee” :stuck_out_tongue:
I’d like to try a HoA build where I’m not forced to always kite and run.

Well the great thing about HoA is that you CAN kite around while doing big dmg :slight_smile: other active skills forces you to stand still which is bad for a dodge based class imo. Look at tunk, he managed to reach a wave 500 or something with his HoA build. Multishot and DA have good dmg but they force you to stand still for a while which makes the playstyle/defense a bit harder. At least for Arena. In mono they all do fine.

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