Leveling as a Rogue with Dual Core, Twisting Blades, or Penetrating Shot
Please note that our Rogue leveling guides are now on separate pages. You can access them using the buttons below.Dual Core Rapid Fire Flurry Rogue Leveling Build Twisting Blades Rogue Leveling Build Penetrating Shot Rogue Leveling Build
The Rogue offers a variety of viable Core Skills that are effective for leveling a new character. In this guide, players can choose between a melee, ranged, or hybrid playstyle.
The newest addition to this leveling guide, Dual Core Rogue, is our most recommended build for leveling a new character in Season 1. This build combines Rapid Fire for single target Damage Per Second (DPS) and Flurry for Area of Effect (AoE) clearing.
The other build options are still effective for leveling a Rogue. Twisting Blades Rogue is a melee build that excels at single target DPS, but the AoE can be a bit lacking. Alternatively, Penetrating Shot is the best option for players wanting a pure ranged playstyle. Penetrating Shot does not deal as much damage, but is a safer ranged build for leveling.
If you are already Level 50, we have put together a list of endgame activities you should do at the bottom of this guide, and you can check out any of our Endgame Rogue builds.
General Leveling Tips
The recommended World Tier to level in is 1 (Adventurer) for the fastest experience. You can play on World Tier 2 (Veteran) for an added challenge, but the 20% extra experience from monsters does not make up for the added time it takes to kill them. This will generally result in a slower and clunkier leveling process.
If you are playing on the seasonal realm, check out our season checklist for some useful tips and tricks to prepare you for Season 1 of Diablo 4. Don’t miss this chance to make the most out of your leveling journey!
You must complete the main storyline before you can engage in endgame activities, like the Capstone Dungeon (which unlocks World Tier 3), Nightmare Dungeons, or the Tree of Whispers. If you have already completed the main storyline on another character, use the Campaign Skip feature in the character selection screen.
Getting a mount is an important step in your leveling journey, and we recommend saving your explorations of the world (such as for obtaining Altars of Lilith) for until after you get it. For more details, read our mount guide.
Energy, Rogue’s Class Resource
Rogues rely on Energy as their resource in order to use their most powerful skills. Energy regenerates slowly on its own, but the regeneration rate can be increased by certain effects tied to skills, talents, and gear.
Specialization, Rogue’s Class Mechanic
The Rogue has a unique mechanic that is appropriate to the class. It is simply called Specializations. Players will get access to the Specializations after reaching Level 15 and finishing a Rogue-exclusive questline.
The Rogues class mechanic offers three different Specializations, each of which opens a distinct playstyle and setup.
Rogues can swap their specialization at any time, even during combat!
The first Specialization Rogues can pick is Combo Points. This causes any of the Basic Skills to generate Combo Points. Certain skills can then consume those Combo Points for additional effects.
The skills that are affected by the Combo Points Specialization are:
- Barrage: Increased damage and number of arrows fired;
- Rapid Fire: Increased damage and number of arrows fired;
- Penetrating Shot: Increased damage and a chance to Knock Down;
- Flurry: Increased damage and Attack Speed bonus;
- Twisting Blades: Increased damage and Movement Speed.
The second Rogue Specialization is called Inner Sight and is unlocked at Level 20. This Specialization allows Rogues to mark their enemies and places an Inner Sight gauge next to their Energy gauge. Attacking marked enemies fills the Inner Sight gauge; once it is full, it grants unlimited Energy for 4 seconds.
Enemies marked by Inner Sight are identified by a purple eye icon. If the marked enemy is not killed within 10 seconds, the mark switches to another target. As long as marked enemies are being attacked by the Rogue, the Inner Sight gauge will fill up. Stronger hits fill the gauge faster.
Preparation is the third and final specialization for Rogues. It becomes available at Level 30 and enables players to decrease the cooldown of their Ultimate Skill by spending 100 energy. Additionally, using the Ultimate ability resets the cooldowns of all other skills. This specialization is especially useful for players with builds that heavily rely on energy consumption and Ultimate skills, and is mostly used in endgame builds.
Secondary Rogue Class Mechanics
Rogues have the option to play in a very discreet and stealthy manner. In certain situations, it may be more efficient to hide within the shadows to then strike the enemy unaware. Stealth can be activated through specific Rogue skills. Characters who are Stealthed cannot be attacked by enemies. However, Stealth is lost when attacking or being damaged by an enemy.
Rogues can be entirely built around Subterfuges. This includes Traps. Various skills consist of setting up different Traps. This playstyle, however, forces Rogues to be aware of their positioning as well as the placement of their Traps. Some of these Traps inflict Cold, Poison, or Shadow damage. Traps are triggered when an enemy moves within their range.
Rogues are the only class that is able to Imbue their weapons with different elements: Cold, Poison, and Shadow. Through the use of these elemental Imbuements, Rogues can cripple their targets them with Shadow damage, inflict Poison damage over time, and even Freeze them completely.
Rogue Weapons and Restrictions
Rogues can equip two One-Handed Weapons, which can be either One-Handed Swords or Daggers, and one ranged weapon such as the Bow or Crossbow. Depending on the skill that is used, Rogues automatically swap to the appropriate weapon type.
Note that certain skills require the use of two Daggers; One-Handed Swords do not work for all skills.
Rogue Skills and Talents
This section provides an overview of the main skill categories for the Rogue class.
For a more detailed and in-depth list of all Rogue skills and talents, refer to the appropriate pages below.Rogue Skills Rogue Passives
Basic Skills are spammable skills that only deal a small amount of damage and are used to apply debuffs or to recover Energy. Furthermore, Basic Skills are the only way to generate Combo Points for that Specialization.
The Basic Skills for the Rogue are:
These are be the most important skills for the Rogue. Despite costing a lot of Energy, Core Skills do much more damage than Basic Skills and typically offer more AoE (area of effect). These skills become especially powerful in combination with the Combo Points Specialization.
All ranged Skills require a ranged weapon, and all melee skills require dual-wielded weapons.
The Core Skills for the Rogue are:
Agility Skills allow Rogues to move around the battlefield faster in order to reposition or engage enemies on the move. Dash is especially useful for fast-paced combat, and should be included in almost every Rogue build.
The Agility Skills for the Rogue are:
Subterfuge Skills massively add to the class identity of the Rogue by providing multiple tricks to choose from, either offensive, defensive, or both. Subterfuge Skills are a great addition to any build.
The Subterfuge Skills for the Rogue are:
Through the use of these skills, Rogues are able to Imbue their next two weapon attacks with extra effects. Imbuement Skills have a fairly long cooldown, however. Skills that can be imbued are: all Core Skills, Dash, Shadow Step, and Rain of Arrows.
The Imbuement Skills for the Rogue are:
Ultimate Skills are powerful skills that have a particularly long cooldown. Ultimate Skills must be built around in order to be effective, and only one Ultimate Skill can be chosen at a time.
The Ultimate Skills for the Rogue are:
While mounted, the Rogue has access to a unique Dismount Skill which causes them to leap off the mount and cast Rain of Arrows while midair. Players that are struck by an enemy are automatically dismounted and are unable to use their Dismount Skill.
The four core attributes benefit each of the five classes in slightly different ways. Here are their effects on the Rogue:
|Attribute||Effect 1||Effect 2|
|Strength||3% Resource Generation per 100 points||1 Armor per point|
|Intelligence||2% Critical Strike Chance per 100 points||5% All Resistances per 100 points|
|Willpower||10% Healing Received per 100 points||25% Overpower Damage per 100 points|
|Dexterity*||10% Skill Damage per 100 points||1% Dodge Chance per 100 points|
*Dexterity is considered the primary attribute of the Rogue, as it multiplies all damage.
Endgame Rogue Builds
The leveling builds listed at the top of this page are designed to take your Rogue to Level 50. Afterwards, you should use an endgame build guide to allocate Paragon points and equip gear with the best stats and Aspects. The following endgame builds will help you optimize your character from Level 50-100.Level 50+ Endgame Rogue Builds
Finish the storyline to unlock the various endgame activities in Diablo 4. Follow the yellow-marked quests, and you should have no trouble finding your way.
After finishing the main storyline, the game becomes quite open-ended. The following sections provide a quick list of the activities you should do, in approximate order.
Complete the Level 50 Capstone Dungeon
Switch the difficulty to World Tier 2 and complete the Level 50 Capstone Dungeon located in Kyovashad, Fractured Peaks. Once unlocked from completing the main storyline, the dungeon can be attempted even while below character Level 50. Clearing the dungeon can be difficult before you are level 45, as the enemies are fixed at Level 50. You must switch difficulty to World Tier 2 in order to see the dungeon and be able to enter it.
Once you have completed the Capstone dungeon, you can switch the difficulty to World Tier 3 to enable Sacred items and Nightmare Dungeons.
Tree of Whispers
The Tree of Whispers, located in Hawezar, rewards you for completing bounties found all over the game world. These are generally profitable activities that reward you with experience and items. They can be completed while doing other events and activities in a zone.
The Tree of Whispers is also your first source of Nightmare Sigils, used to activate Nightmare Dungeons. They are not guaranteed to drop, so keep turning in Whispers of the Dead until it appears.
Nightmare Dungeons are arguably the main endgame activity in Diablo 4. Once you receive your first Nightmare Sigil from the Tree of Whispers, you can start clearing these dungeons. Nightmare Sigils continue to drop in Nightmare Dungeons, so you should never run out. Nightmare dungeons can only be performed in World Tier 3 or higher.
Nightmare dungeons are an essential part of the endgame (since their difficulty has a lot of potential for increase), providing you with a challenge in return for which you can receive great item rewards. Nightmare dungeons are also the only way to level up the Glyphs that are inserted into your Paragon board, which is crucial for increasing character power.
Helltides appear on the map for players who are in World Tier 3 or higher, taking over large swathes of land for one hour. During this time, monsters killed in the affected area drop a special temporary currency that can be used to unlock chests found in the Helltide area.
Participating in Helltides often is highly recommended. They are the only activity where you can reliably obtain Forgotten Souls, a crafting material required to Enchant Sacred and Ancestral items at the Occultist. Enchanting items to replace an undesirable property is key to optimizing your gear.
Complete Renown in All Zones
Complete the remaining Renown stages in all of the zones. Since stages 4 and 5 are locked behind World Tier 3, doing the Capstone dungeon first is necessary.
Although Renown bonuses provide some Skill and Paragon Points, character power grows faster from leveling and finding gear upgrades. Completing Renown can be quite time consuming, so you should delay it until you are well geared with Sacred Items in World Tier 3 or Ancestral Items in World Tier 4.
Complete the Level 70 Capstone Dungeon
Completing level 70 Capstone dungeon (marked on your map with an orange dungeon entrance) unlocks World Tier 4, and with it the highest possible item type, Ancestral items.
The enemies in this Dungeon are fixed at level 70, and the final boss is very punishing. We do not recommend attempting it before level 65.
Legion Events and World Bosses
Legion events and World Bosses are marked on the map. They are worthwhile activities to engage in, since they reward potentially good items.
Legion events are also good experience. Simply go to the marked area on the map and join other players in killing the enemies.