Assassination Rogue DPS Rotation, Cooldowns, and Abilities — Dragonflight 10.0.7

Last updated on Mar 20, 2023 at 14:16 by Seliathan 56 comments
General Information

On this page, you will learn how to optimize the rotation of your Assassination Rogue in both single-target and multiple-target situations. We also have advanced sections about cooldowns, procs, etc. in order to minmax your DPS. All our content is updated for World of Warcraft — Dragonflight 10.0.7.

If you were looking for WotLK Classic content, please refer to our WotLK Classic Assassination Rogue rotation.


Assassination Rogue Rotation

Welcome to our Rotation page for Assassination Rogues. Here you will find out more about your rotational priorities in both single-target and multi-target situations which you will apply in both Raiding and Mythic+ scenarios.


Easy Mode

If you are just starting you might want to get more comfortable with your Assassination Rogue by using a more simplified yet still effective build and rotation. You can find out more about it in our Easy Mode section.


Mythic+ Rotation

For information about Mythic+ as an Assassination Rogue and the rotation you need to use in this game mode, please refer to our Mythic+ page.



The content on this page is purely PvE-related. If you are looking for PvP Rotation Tips, please visit our PvP page below.


Single Target Ability Priority List for Assassination Rogue

If you are using one of our recommended builds from our Talents page, simply select it in this list for the rotation to include all rotational adjustments for the selected build.

Talent Builds:

Individual Talent choices:

  1. Apply Slice and Dice Icon Slice and Dice with 1+ Combo Points, and maintain it by casting Envenom Icon Envenom with 5+ Combo Points.
  2. Maintain Garrote Icon Garrote, casted from Stealth Icon Stealth when possible.
  3. Maintain Rupture Icon Rupture with 5+ Combo Points.
  4. Activate Deathmark Icon Deathmark when available.
  5. Activate Vanish Icon Vanish on cooldown. Sync this ability with Deathmark Icon Deathmark by applying empowered Garrote Icon Garrote before using Deathmark Icon Deathmark.
  6. Use Shiv Icon Shiv when close to overcapping charges.
  7. Cast Envenom Icon Envenom with 5-6 Combo Points.
  8. Cast Ambush Icon Ambush to generate Combo Points whenever it is usable.
  9. Cast Mutilate Icon Mutilate to generate Combo Points.

Multiple Target Ability Priority List for Assassination Rogue

  1. Apply Slice and Dice Icon Slice and Dice with 1+ Combo Points, and maintain it by casting Envenom Icon Envenom with 5+ Combo Points.
  2. Maintain Crimson Tempest Icon Crimson Tempest with 5+ Combo Points.
  3. Maintain Garrote Icon Garrote on multiple targets, cast from Stealth Icon Stealth when possible.
  4. Maintain Rupture Icon Rupture with 5+ Combo Points, if not sustaining Energy.
  5. Activate Deathmark Icon Deathmark when available on a priority target.
  6. Activate Vanish Icon Vanish on cooldown. Sync this ability with Deathmark Icon Deathmark by applying empowered Garrote Icon Garrote before using Deathmark Icon Deathmark.
  7. Use Shiv Icon Shiv on a priority target when close to overcapping charges.
  8. Cast Envenom Icon Envenom on a priority target with 5-6 Combo Points.
  9. Cast Fan of Knives Icon Fan of Knives to generate Combo Points.
  10. Cast Crimson Tempest Icon Crimson Tempest as a filler beyond 6 targets.
  11. Cast Envenom Icon Envenom as a filler under 6 targets.

Important Notes

  • You will only ever cast Slice and Dice Icon Slice and Dice once per fight. You will naturally, maintain it whenever you cast Envenom as a regular part of your rotation thanks to Cut to the Chase Icon Cut to the Chase.
  • Optimal usage of finishers is at 4-5 Combo Points with Vigor Icon Vigor, or 5-6 Combo Points with Deeper Stratagem Icon Deeper Stratagem.
  • If Rupture Icon Rupture is about to fall off, it can be reapplied with any number of Combo Points to maintain uptime. It is best to apply it with 5+ Combo Points, however, for maximum Energy efficiency and rotational fluidity.
  • You should never have more than 80 Energy when activating your Deathmark Icon Deathmark on a target. Try to activate Deathmark on a target that will live for the entire duration of the debuff.
  • YOu will always want to sync Deathmark Icon Deathmark and Vanish Icon Vanish on single-target.
  • When talented into Indiscriminate Carnage Icon Indiscriminate Carnage, you will want to make sure to use an Improved Garrote Icon Improved Garrote empowered Garrote to spread it to all targets, and using a maximum Combo Point Rupture Icon Rupture as well.
  • Always hold and chain both charges of Shiv Icon Shiv with Kingsbane Icon Kingsbane when talented into it, to ensure the entire Kingsbane receives the bonus damage.

Vault of the Incarnated Tier Set

Acquiring the new tier-set bonuses has no bearing on your rotational gameplay. They are simply passive bonuses that improve your DPS.



Your Lethal Poison should always be Deadly Poison Icon Deadly Poison. If you talented into Amplifying Poison Icon Amplifying Poison it will be your go-to choice instead.

You have three choices for your non-lethal poison, Crippling Poison Icon Crippling Poison, Atrophic Poison Icon Atrophic Poison, and Numbing Poison Icon Numbing Poison. For raiding, you will want to use Atrophic Poison unless your raid wants you to slow a specific group of targets. For Mythic+ you will want to use the poison that best suits your tank's needs. Crippling Poison allows your tank to more easily kite enemies, whereas Numbing Poison slows their attack speed instead, while Atrophic Poison reduces the damage the group takes from enemy attacks and spells.


Notable Mechanics for Assassination Rogue


Improved Garrote Snapshotting

The 8% damage buff from Nightstalker Icon Nightstalker and the 50% damage buff from Improved Garrote Icon Improved Garrote are removed when you overwrite the bleed you empowered by re-applying an unempowered bleed. Therefore it is best to let the bleed run its full duration before refreshing it.

It is best to use your Vanish Icon Vanish before Deathmark Icon Deathmark to maximize your Improved Garrote Icon Improved Garrote bonus.



When you refresh Rupture Icon Rupture, Garrote Icon Garrote, Crimson Tempest Icon Crimson Tempest, Envenom Icon Envenom or Slice and Dice Icon Slice and Dice before they expire, the remaining duration is added to the newly applied effect, up to 30% of the newly applied base duration. This mechanic is called "Pandemic".

Example — You can safely refresh a 5-Combo Point Rupture when it has 7.2 seconds or less remaining because its base duration is 24 seconds. Deeper Stratagem Icon Deeper Stratagem allows for 6 Combo Point Ruptures, which last 28 seconds. 6-Combo Point Ruptures can be refreshed safely when they have 8.4 seconds or less remaining.

Safe Pandemic refresh timing is based on the newly applied base duration and not the original length of the effect. Therefore, a 2 Combo Point Rupture can benefit from full Pandemic if it is refreshed by a 4-5 Combo Point Rupture. We explain how to take advantage of this in the opening sequence later in the guide.

If you are talented into Exsanguinate Icon Exsanguinate, you should refresh your bleed effects (Rupture Icon Rupture and Garrote Icon Garrote) before Exsanguinate casts, for maximum efficacy.


Academic Information for Assassination Rogue


The Interaction Between Combo Points and Energy

As an Assassination Rogue, many of your abilities require Energy to be utilized. Your Energy bar has a maximum capacity of 120 Energy (170 Energy when you have Vigor Icon Vigor talented). Your baseline rate of Energy regeneration is 10 Energy per second, however, it is increased by:

Higher Energy regeneration allows for higher uptimes on Envenom Icon Envenom, which awards much higher DPS over an extended encounter.

It is very important to avoid resource overflow. Capping Energy and overcapping Combo Points is an egregious error and special care should be taken to avoid wasting precious resources. "Pooling" higher levels of Energy, however, can be very beneficial (provided you do not cap), as it allows you to store resources in anticipation of a window of high burst. This can help reduce the patchiness of your debuff/buff uptimes which will result in more consistent and smoother damage output.

Combo Point generation is increased by Seal Fate Icon Seal Fate, which causes your critical hits with melee Combo generators to add Combo Points to your target per critical hit. This means Mutilate Icon Mutilate can generate up to 4 Combo Points if the main hand and the off-hand both critically strike. Fan of Knives Icon Fan of Knives can generate the maximum number of Combo Points with a single cast if it critically strikes 4 or more targets. You should never cast a Combo Point generator at or above 4 Combo Points (5 with Deeper Stratagem talented), unless it is Garrote Icon Garrote or Poisoned Knife Icon Poisoned Knife (as neither of these benefits from Seal Fate). Do not use Poisoned Knife Icon Poisoned Knife to reach maximum Combo Points, unless you are out of range of the boss and in danger of hitting the Energy cap.


Pooling Energy and Combo Points

It can be very beneficial to "pool" your Energy and Combo Points, which involves auto-attacking while your Energy regenerates. The advantage this provides is variable, meaning that pooling does not always result in damage gained. Situations where pooling Energy and Combo Points is beneficial include:

  • before the cooldown on Shiv Icon Shiv recharges, to allow for immediate use and optimized burst;
  • before an important add spawns, so you can apply as much instant pressure as possible;
  • to assist with Envenom Icon Envenom uptime, by chaining two Envenoms so that the buff does not drop;
  • an encounter-specific buff or damage phase is imminent.

Kingsbane Icon Kingsbane is a new talent that applies a DoT effect that increases in strength for every lethal poison application. You will want to hold Shiv Icon Shiv and Thistle Tea Icon Thistle Tea to overlap with the ending of the debuff, and try to maintain a 100% Envenom Icon Envenom uptime during its entire debuff duration.

Pooling Energy is not a magical DPS gain by itself. It allows you to slightly adjust the timing of your abilities so that you fit more attacks during periods of increased damage (provided you can properly identify when such periods are going to come).


Defensive Utility

All Rogues have a solid number of defensive cooldowns, making them the best candidate for soaking required mechanics and dealing with heavy incoming damage.

  • Feint Icon Feint reduces AoE damage taken by 40% for 5 seconds for 35 Energy. When talented into Elusiveness Icon Elusiveness, it also reduces all other damage by 30%. Feint is fantastic for dealing with predictable raid damage.
  • Cloak of Shadows Icon Cloak of Shadows provides magic immunity for 1 second, followed by 4 seconds where all spells will miss you. Cloak of Shadows has a variety of uses, both pre-emptive and reactive, such as solo soaking mechanics or clearing debuffs that would force you out of melee range.
  • Evasion Icon Evasion increases your Dodge chance by 100% for 10 seconds. This can be useful if you have to tank some adds or the boss for a few seconds. In rare cases, it can be used to negate physical ranged attacks or spells.
  • Cheat Death Icon Cheat Death is a talent that allows you to escape lethal damage once every 6 minutes. The damage cannot exceed more than twice your maximum health. Cheat Death is great for soaking mechanics that pierce immunities and damage reductions, as it guarantees your survival. It is also great for encounters with bursty damage that might take you by surprise, as you get a free get-out-of-jail-free card at least once in the encounter.
  • Crimson Vial Icon Crimson Vial provides a respectable amount of healing on a 30-second cooldown.

Do not forget about this defensive toolkit, as it can be a major asset for both individual and raid-wide survivability.


Opening Sequences for Assassination Rogue

Assassination has different openers based on your choice of talents.

When using Dragon-Tempered Blades Icon Dragon-Tempered Blades and Exsanguinate Icon Exsanguinate:

  1. Start from Stealth Icon Stealth.
  2. Cast Garrote Icon Garrote.
  3. Use Slice and Dice Icon Slice and Dice.
  4. Cast Garrote Icon Garrote.
  5. Cast Rupture Icon Rupture.
  6. Cast Echoing Reprimand Icon Echoing Reprimand.
  7. Cast Rupture Icon Rupture.
  8. Cast Serrated Bone Spike Icon Serrated Bone Spike.
  9. Cast Vanish Icon Vanish.
  10. Cast Garrote Icon Garrote.
  11. Use Exsanguinate Icon Exsanguinate.
  12. Activate Deathmark Icon Deathmark.
  13. Cast Envenom Icon Envenom.
  14. Use Thistle Tea Icon Thistle Tea if talented and at maximum charges.
  15. Cast Shiv Icon Shiv.
  16. Continue with normal priority.

Extended Assassination Rotation

The fully inclusive rotation is a lot more extensive than the one listed above but gives only marginal gains at best. As such, it is included here (in raw simc format).

# Default consumables

# This default action priority list is automatically created based on your character.
# It is an attempt to provide you with an action list that is both simple and practicable,
# while resulting in a meaningful and good simulation. It may not result in the highest possible DPS.
# Feel free to edit, adapt and improve it to your own needs.
# SimulationCraft is always looking for updates and improvements to the default action lists.

# Executed before combat begins. Accepts non-harmful actions only.
# Snapshot raid buffed stats before combat begins and pre-potting is done.
# Determine which (if any) stat buff trinket we want to attempt to sync with Deathmark.

# Executed every time the actor is available.
# Restealth if possible (no vulnerable enemies in combat)
# Interrupt on cooldown to allow simming interactions with that
# Combined Energy Regen needed to saturate
# Put SnD up initially for Cut to the Chase, refresh with Envenom if at low duration

# Cooldowns If adds are up, snipe the one with the lowest TTD. Use when dying faster than CP deficit or without any CP.
# If no adds will die within the next 30s, use MfD for max CP.
# Sync Deathmark window with Exsanguinate if applicable
# Wait on Deathmark for Garrote with MA
# Deathmark to be used if not stealthed, Rupture is up, and all other talent conditions are satisfied
# Sync the priority stat buff trinket with Deathmark, otherwise use on cooldown
# Exsanguinate when not stealthed and both Rupture and Garrote are up for long enough.
# Shiv if DoTs are up; Always Shiv with Kingsbane, otherwise attempt to sync with Sepsis or Deathmark if we will not waste more than half Shiv's cooldown

# Direct damage abilities Envenom at 4+ (5+ with DS) CP. Immediately on 2+ targets, with Deathmark, or with TB; otherwise wait for some energy. Also, wait if the Exsg combo is coming up.,if=effective_combo_points>=4+talent.deeper_stratagem.enabled&(debuff.deathmark.up|debuff.shiv.up|debuff.amplifying_poison.stack>=10|energy.deficit<=25+energy.regen_combined|!variable.single_target|effective_combo_points>cp_max_spend)&(!talent.exsanguinate.enabled|cooldown.exsanguinate.remains>2),name=use_filler,value=combo_points.deficit>1|energy.deficit<=25+energy.regen_combined|!variable.single_target
# Apply SBS to all targets without a debuff as a priority, preferring targets dying sooner after the primary target,if=variable.use_filler&!dot.serrated_bone_spike_dot.ticking,target_if=min:target.time_to_die+(dot.serrated_bone_spike_dot.ticking*600),if=variable.use_filler&!dot.serrated_bone_spike_dot.ticking
# Keep from capping charges or burn at the end of fights,if=variable.use_filler&master_assassin_remains<0.8&(fight_remains<=5|cooldown.serrated_bone_spike.max_charges-charges_fractional<=0.25)
# When MA is not at high duration, sync with Shiv,if=variable.use_filler&master_assassin_remains<0.8&!variable.single_target&debuff.shiv.up
# Fan of Knives at 19+ stacks of Hidden Blades or against 4+ targets.,if=variable.use_filler&(!priority_rotation&spell_targets.fan_of_knives>=3+stealthed.rogue+talent.dragontempered_blades)
# Fan of Knives to apply poisons if inactive on any target (or any bleeding targets with priority rotation) at 3T,target_if=!dot.deadly_poison_dot.ticking&(!priority_rotation|dot.garrote.ticking|dot.rupture.ticking),if=variable.use_filler&spell_targets.fan_of_knives>=3,if=variable.use_filler&cooldown.deathmark.remains>10,if=variable.use_filler&(master_assassin_remains=0&!talent.doomblade|buff.blindside.up)
# Tab-Mutilate to apply Deadly Poison at 2 targets,target_if=!dot.deadly_poison_dot.ticking,if=variable.use_filler&spell_targets.fan_of_knives=2,if=variable.use_filler

# Damage over time abilities Limit secondary Garrotes for priority rotation if we have 35 energy regen or Garrote will expire on the primary target,name=skip_cycle_garrote,value=priority_rotation&(dot.garrote.remains<cooldown.garrote.duration|variable.regen_saturated)
# Limit secondary Ruptures for priority rotation if we have 35 energy regen or Shiv is up on 2T+,name=skip_cycle_rupture,value=priority_rotation&(debuff.shiv.up&spell_targets.fan_of_knives>2|variable.regen_saturated)
# Limit Ruptures if Deathmark+Shiv/Master Assassin is up and we have 2+ seconds left on the Rupture DoT,name=skip_rupture,value=debuff.deathmark.up&(debuff.shiv.up|master_assassin_remains>0)&dot.rupture.remains>2
# Special Garrote and Rupture setup before Exsanguinate cast,if=talent.exsanguinate.enabled&!will_lose_exsanguinate&dot.garrote.pmultiplier<=1&cooldown.exsanguinate.remains<2&spell_targets.fan_of_knives=1&>6&dot.garrote.remains*0.5<target.time_to_die,if=talent.exsanguinate.enabled&!will_lose_exsanguinate&dot.rupture.pmultiplier<=1&(effective_combo_points>=cp_max_spend&cooldown.exsanguinate.remains<1&dot.rupture.remains*0.5<target.time_to_die)
# Garrote upkeep, also tries to use it as a special generator for the last CP before a finisher,for_next=1,if=refreshable&combo_points.deficit>=1&(pmultiplier<=1|remains<=tick_time&spell_targets.fan_of_knives>=3)&(!will_lose_exsanguinate|remains<=tick_time*2&spell_targets.fan_of_knives>=3)&(target.time_to_die-remains)>4&master_assassin_remains=0,for_next=1,cycle_targets=1,if=!variable.skip_cycle_garrote&target!>=1&(pmultiplier<=1|remains<=tick_time&spell_targets.fan_of_knives>=3)&(!will_lose_exsanguinate|remains<=tick_time*2&spell_targets.fan_of_knives>=3)&(target.time_to_die-remains)>12&master_assassin_remains=0
# Crimson Tempest on multiple targets at 4+ CP when running out in 2-5s as long as we have enough regen and are not set up for Deathmark,target_if=min:remains,if=spell_targets>=2&effective_combo_points>=4&energy.regen_combined>20&(!cooldown.deathmark.ready|dot.rupture.ticking)&remains<(2+3*(spell_targets>=4))
# Keep up Rupture at 4+ on all targets (when living long enough and not snapshot),if=!variable.skip_rupture&effective_combo_points>=4&refreshable&(pmultiplier<=1|remains<=tick_time&spell_targets.fan_of_knives>=3)&(!will_lose_exsanguinate|remains<=tick_time*2&spell_targets.fan_of_knives>=3)&target.time_to_die-remains>(4+(talent.dashing_scoundrel*5)+(talent.doomblade*5)+(variable.regen_saturated*6)),cycle_targets=1,if=!variable.skip_cycle_rupture&!variable.skip_rupture&target!>=4&refreshable&(pmultiplier<=1|remains<=tick_time&spell_targets.fan_of_knives>=3)&(!will_lose_exsanguinate|remains<=tick_time*2&spell_targets.fan_of_knives>=3)&target.time_to_die-remains>(4+(talent.dashing_scoundrel*5)+(talent.doomblade*5)+(variable.regen_saturated*6))
# Fallback AoE Crimson Tempest with the same logic as above, but ignoring the energy conditions if we are not using Rupture,if=spell_targets>=2&effective_combo_points>=4&remains<2+3*(spell_targets>=4)
# Crimson Tempest on ST if in pandemic and nearly max energy and if Envenom will not do more damage due to TB/MA,if=spell_targets=1&!talent.dashing_scoundrel&effective_combo_points>=(cp_max_spend-1)&refreshable&!will_lose_exsanguinate&!debuff.shiv.up&debuff.amplifying_poison.stack<15&target.time_to_die-remains>4

# Stealthed Actions
# Improved Garrote: Apply or Refresh with buffed Garrotes
# Improved Garrote + Exsg on 1T: Refresh Garrote at the end of stealth to get max duration before Exsanguinate

# Vanish Vanish Sync for Improved Garrote with Deathmark
# Vanish for Indiscriminate Carnage or Improved Garrote at 2-3+ targets
# Vanish with Master Assassin: Rupture+Garrote not in refresh range, during Deathmark+Shiv. Sync with Sepsis final hit if possible.
# Shadow Dance with Master Assassin: Rupture+Garrote not in refresh range, during Deathmark+Shiv. Sync with Sepsis final hit if possible.


  • 20 Mar. 2023: Reviewed for Patch 10.0.7.
  • 24 Jan. 2023: Updated for Dragonflight Patch 10.0.5 changes.
  • 04 Jan. 2023: Updated rotational priorities for DTB and Kingsbane builds.
  • 11 Dec. 2022: Updated for Dragonflight Season 1.
  • 28 Nov. 2022: Updated for Dragonflight launch.
  • 25 Oct. 2022: Updated for Dragonflight pre-patch.
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