Leveling as a Rogue with Twisting Blades
Rogue leveling is a breeze as you fly through Sanctuary with the Twisting Blades leveling build. This is your leveling guide for Diablo 4, with the maximum Skill Point allocation at level 50. From previous Beta testing, we currently believe Twisting Blades is the best option for leveling a new Rogue character. Let us go over the build mechanics, character progression, and playstyle!
Twisting Blades is the best starting Core Skill for Rogue due to the high hit damage. In addition, the piercing effect of the returning blades can be used to kill multiple enemies at a time with proper positioning. Twisting Blades excels at both single target damage and AoE clearing without any investment. The only downsides are the melee range and finesse required to play the build.
This fast-paced burst build is perfect for players that want a more complex and involved playstyle. Fly through the battlefield with the Twisting Blades Rogue!
If you are already level 50, you can check out any of our Endgame Rogue builds.Level 50/Endgame Twisting Blades Rogue Build Level 50/Endgame Flurry Rogue Build Level 50/Endgame Penetrating Shot Rogue Build Level 50/Endgame Poison Trap Rogue Build
Skill Tree Points
The following table shows the order in which to allocate your Skill Points for the Twisting Blades Rogue leveling build. You gain 48 points at Level 50 and 2 points from completing Renown in each Act zone, for a total of 58.
Mechanics and Playstyle
The Twisting Blade Rogue leveling build is more involved to play than most others. Twisting Blades damage is increased by several buffs to cause a devastating hit. Combo Points can be generated for additional damage. Shadow Imbuement turns the attack into Shadow damage. Finally, Concealment guarantees your opener to be a Critical Hit. After the first victim is impaled by Twisting Blades, Dash and Shadow Step are used to reposition around other enemies so the returning blades can hit them. The flying blades retain the damage buffs of the initial impale, including the guaranteed Critical Hit!
Damage is increased further with Close Quarters Combat, Malice, Exploit, Precision Imbuement and Impetus. Survivability is gained through Agile and Sturdy, while Siphoning Strikes sustain Life. Finally, Stutter Step and Haste speed up movement for faster farming.
The Twisting Blades Rogue utilizes Crowd Control effects to render Elites helpless. Methodical Shadow Step Stuns for 2 seconds and closes the gap. Follow up with Twisting Blades to Daze your target. Once Dazed, Critical Hits activate Trick Attacks to continuously Knock Down the enemy.
Fundamental Puncture easily applies Vulnerable to a target with a single Basic attack. In group play, apply this debuff to Elites and Bosses so your teammates deal 20% more damage. Stack Damage to Crowd Controlled and Vulnerable Enemies on gear and the Paragon Board to scale your damage further.
AoE Damage Rotation
Explode groups of mobs with the following rotation.
- (Optional) Initiate combat with Shadow Step to close the gap, targeting the toughest opponent to Stun it.
- Immediately activate both Concealment and Shadow Imbuement to buff your next attack.
- Cast Twisting Blades one or two times on the target, depending on how tough it is.
- Use Dash or Evade to move through any additional enemies so the returning blades pierce through them.
- Use Puncture to finish off any injured enemies, generate Energy and build Combo Points for your next Twisting Blades.
- Cast additional Twisting Blades on any remaining enemies with high health.
- Repeat the rotation when cooldowns are ready.
Single Target Damage Rotation with Combo Points
Use the following rotation against Bosses for high sustained single target DPS.
- (Optional) Close the gap to the target with Shadow Step.
- Rapidly cast Puncture three times to build up Combo Points. Stand close enough to the target to hit twice, applying Vulnerable.
- If not on cooldown, activate Concealment to guarantee the next Critical Hit.
- If not on cooldown, activate Shadow Imbuement for more damage.
- Cast Twisting Blades once on the target.
- Repeat the rotation. Get into the rhythm of casting 3 Basic attacks for Combo Points before each Twisting Blades.
Single Target Damage Rotation with Inner Sight
Switch the Rogue Specialization to Inner Sight to deal more single target DPS against the toughest enemies, like World Bosses. The rotation is the same as the Combo Point Rotation above, except you spam Twisting Blades for 4 seconds when Inner Sight activates to give you unlimited Energy.
Twisting Blades Rogue Specialization
The Rogue Specialization can be unlocked at level 15. Complete the True Potential questline as soon as possible to gain access to the first Specialization option, Combo Points.
Build Combo Points with Puncture to unleash additional damage for Twisting Blades. This option is preferred for general farming due to the burst damage playstyle.
The Specialization can be swapped to Inner Sight for long single target fights, like World Bosses. The harder you hit, the faster you fill up your Inner Sight Gauge to gain unlimited Energy for 4 seconds. A strong character benefits more from this Specialization, allowing for more Twisting Blades usage.
Gear Choice and Stat Priority while Leveling
Make sure to pick up all Rare equipment drops that may be upgrades while you are leveling Twisting Blades Rogue. Save Legendary items with useful aspects in your stash to be used later for extraction and imprinting onto well rolled Rare items.
When comparing weapons with similar item levels, Swords are preferred over Daggers for higher damage per hit. The DPS value on ranged weapons doesn’t matter, so prioritize affix values instead. Crossbows are preferred over Bows for the Vulnerable Damage implicit affix.
Listed below are the stat affixes to prioritize on gear for Twisting Blades Rogue leveling, ranked by their importance. Affixes on the same level have roughly the same importance.
|1||DPS value on one-handed weapons|
|2||+ Rank of Twisting Blades|
+ Damage to Close, Dazed, Stunned, Healthy and Crowd Controlled Enemies
+ Damage with Dual-Wielded Weapons, Core and Cutthroat Skills
+ Damage while Healthy
+ Vulnerable Damage
+ Critical Strike Chance and Damage
+ Attack Speed and Basic Skill Attack Speed
|4||+ Damage Reduction|
+ Any Elemental Resistances
+ Dodge Chance
|5||+ Crowd Control Duration|
+ Cooldown Reduction
+ Movement Speed
+ Life and Healing Received
Legendary Aspects and Codex of Power
Bladedancer’s Aspect can be unlocked in the Codex of Power by completing the Jalal’s Vigil in Scosglen. Visit the Occultist to imprint this aspect onto an item for Twisting Blades to orbit you for a short time after they return. Imprint on a Bow or Crossbow for +100% bonus effect on two-handed weapons. You do not need to replace your ranged weapon often, as this build doesn’t use any ranged skills. A Crossbow with useful damage increase stats is preferred.
Listed below are all the Aspects found on Legendary items that are important for the Twisting Blades Rogue leveling build. They are listed in order of priority.
|Aspect Name||Legendary Aspect Power||Source|
|Bladedancer’s Aspect||Twisting Blades orbit for a short time after they return to you, dealing [10 – 15%] of Twisting Blades’ return damage per hit. Based on the distance the blades returned, the orbit damage increases up to [20 – 30%] of the return damage.||Jalal’s Virgil, Scosglen|
|Edgemaster’s Aspect||Skills deal up to [10 – 20%] increased damage based on your available Primary Resource when cast, receiving the maximum benefit while you have full Primary Resource.||Oldstones, Scosglen|
|Aspect of the Expectant||Attacking enemies with a Basic Skill increases the damage of your next Core Skill cast by [5 – 10%], up to 30%.||Underroot, Scosglen|
|Aspect of Retribution||Distant enemies have a 8% chance to be Stunned for 2 seconds when they hit you. You deal [20 – 40%] increased damage to Stunned enemies.||Abandoned Mineworks, Kehjistan|
|Ravager’s Aspect||Shadow Step has an additional Charge. Killing an enemy with Shadow Step refunds a Charge and increases the damage of Shadow Step by [1 – 6%] for 2 seconds, up to [5 – 30%].||Random Drop Only|
|Aspect of Might||Basic Skills grant 20% Damage Reduction for [2 – 6] seconds||Dark Ravine, Dry Steppes|
|Rapid Aspect||Basic Skills gain [15 – 30%] Attack Speed.||Buried Halls, Dry Steppes|
|Accelerating Aspect||Critical Strikes with Core Skills increase your Attack Speed by [15 – 25%] for 3 seconds.||Random Drop Only|
|Exploiter’s Aspect||You have 20% increased Crowd Control Duration. While enemies are Unstoppable, you deal [20 – 50%] increased damage to them.||Random Drop Only|
|Cheat’s Aspect||You take [15 – 25%] less damage from Crowd Controlled enemies. Whenever a Crowd Controlled enemy deals direct damage to you, gain 15% Movement Speed for 2 seconds.||Luban’s Rest, Scosglen|
|Wind Striker Aspect||Critical Strikes grant [8.0 – 16.0%] Movement Speed for 1 second, up to 6 seconds.||Shivta Ruins, Kehjistan|
|Vengeful Aspect||Lucky Hit: Making an enemy Vulnerable has up to a [30 – 50%] chance to grant 3% increased Critical Strike Chance for 3 seconds, up to 9%.||Inferno, Kehjistan|
Listed below are the best Gems to socket into gear for each slot type for the Twisting Blades Rogue leveling build.
- Weapon: Emerald for Critical Strike Damage to Vulnerable Enemies.
- Armor: Ruby for Maximum Life.
- Jewelry: Diamond for all Resistance or any gem that provides you with the resistance type you lack the most.
Elixirs and Health Potions
Visit the Alchemist to craft helpful Elixirs that increase stats and experience gain for 30 minutes. Make sure to forage plants and pick up the necessary crafting materials during your adventures; they randomly spawn around the world. Use an Elixir providing any Resistance you need most, or the Assault Elixir to increase Attack Speed by 7%.
Return to the Alchemist again when you reach Level 20, 30, 45, 60, 70, 80 and 90, to upgrade your potion. The extra healing is essential to survival.