This is my rotation and also an explanation of why I use the skills that I do. For normal trash mobs your rotation won’t be a big issue unless you do not factor in your buffs or attunement building at all so this is solely for extended fights and boss fights etc. Included also will be ideal builds for endgame content and ideal things to be noted and different things of note that are more subtle.
(important things of note)
This is an attempt to explain the Rune-keeper class in an advanced way as concisely as possible. If you want exact stats and times down to decimals and duration of recovery times there are other guides that are much lengthier and will tell you those if you are wanting to master this class. But for the sake of this guide being a relatively quick read and available to all levels of players hopefully it will be fairly short.
The trait that applies the dot called searing words has multiple different tiers that can stack with each other. The tier applied depends on your writ of fire. If there is no writ of fire it applies a t0, if there is a t1 writ of fire you will apply a t1 searing words and so on etc.
Skills and Rotations
(Opening first couple skills against a boss with at least 200k health+)(This is with the bare minimum of 70k mastery for t2 content)
Essay of fire-scathing mockery-essence of flame-distracting flame-smouldering wrath-writ of fire.
There are 5-6 things that these opening 6 skills account for. Because you have done 5 skills including your SW it means that your wrath of flame buff has tiered up to 5 giving you a +25% fire damage buff for smouldering wrath and also insures that you are at max attunement before using SW. Also this will tier up your writ buff that makes your next writ insta cast so that you can immediately renew buffs and debuffs after your channel SW. Because you have done the 4 skills before SW you have 4 20% chances to proc the -15% fire mitigation buff which will oftentimes happen. Including SW, you will have done 5 skills before your first writ which means you have a high chance of applying a t0 searing words. The writ being immediately after SW will renew your +25% fire damage buff and has a chance to not just apply the next tier of searing words but also refresh your debuffs.
After the 6th skill I would continue the rotation by mixing in fiery ridicule and distracting flame restack until you get your t1 searing words hopefully before your SW is off CD then you can use writ of flame as well to reach the next tier for searing words. Every time SW is off CD you will want to have your writ of flame buff at t5 so that it is insta cast and you will want to use your SW every time it is off cd to maximize damage.
There is absolutely no reason that you have to use the exact same rotation as me, the main thing you need to know is just all the tips and most efficient ways to maximize on your buffs and dots etc, which my rotation covers but there are probably plenty of other rotations that will do perfectly fine as well.
Legendary Items (titles, legacies, relics, passives)
Titles: For runestone tac mit/crit rating is what i would advise and for satchel fire damage%/tac mit is what i would recommend.
Runestone: Although it is painful, you will need a first age rock. And even more painfully so, I would not even bother getting up a runestone unless it atleast has the passives crit rating and tactical mitigation on it since you will be getting the most value out of those ones. The most ideal roll on a runestone will be crit rating/tac mit/max morale.This is as perfect of a RK stone as possible. I will explain the legacies and why in order then relics.
The crit rating title is also recommended (purchasable from DA)
Distracting flame: lowered cd allows to stack it constantly for overall higher dps/more combustion damage as well.
Wrath of flame dot: fairly self explanatory synergizes with searing words
Will: overall increase to mastery and no other good dps legacies.
Fate: a good 600 crit rating boost to help cap your crit without essences.
Finesse: 6300 is alot of finesse basically equal to 1 ½ essence worth of finesse(invaluable)
Fire type: self explanatory(major overall increase to dps)
Vit: helpful 600 health no other good legacies.
Setting of long winter: dev mag is helpful for overall dps increase, crit rating+fate is invaluable for capping our crit which is a necessity.
Gem of wizard’s vale: Once again using this for the crit/fate to cap your crit the in combat power regen is a nice bonus. (using a default t10 gem is also acceptable)
Rune of the white mountains: Best rune for all dps classes because the overall -5% attack duration from both your LIs is an insane increase to dps and the mastery bonus is helpful.
Device of tactics: Boosts crit rating significantly and mastery by a nice 2k roughly which is very helpful.
A fairly decent example of what you want your satchel to look like.
SW power cost: increases searing words damage by 23% which is an insane boost to overall dps if you stack searing words tiers well.
Distracting flame damage: Self explanatory (overall increase to dps)
Writ of fire damage: Self explanatory (overall increase to dps)
Will: Overall increase to mastery
Essence of flame damage: Self explanatory (overall increase to dps)
Vit: 600 health boost no other good damage legacies
Self motivation cd: In fire, this skill is your main survival skill so a reduced CD is an absolute necessity.
Do not fall this day cd is also a viable replacement for vit depending on what content you mostly do.
See above runestone relic explanation
I would recommend these various armor combinations these are the easier combinations to get: : (4x pelennor 2x eldacar aud armor) (4x pelennor 2x fire osg(this is recommended for most RKs that want to be able to do t2c but have not gotten raid armor yet)) The harder to get combinations I would recommend: (6x pelennor) (4x t1 raid 2x pelennor) (2x t2 raid 2x pelennor 2x t1 raid) Very best armor combinations in my opinion: (2x t2 raid) (2x pelennor) (2x osg fire) or (4x t2 raid) (2x pelennor) the reason why you would want 4 of the t2 raid armor or 2 of the fire osg armor is because of the fact that you get +wrath of flame dot pulses. While for all of your actual skills that is not a very effective set bonus, the +dot pulses also affects searing words which is a major increase to your damage and getting extra pulses will make it easier to get multiple tiers to stack on each other and last longer.
Easier: full Featured Instance mitigation jewelry. (with full t8 supremes you lose minor stats if you use this)
Harder: full t1 raid jewelry(dps/morale boost) full osg jewelry (primary dps) Full t2 raid jewelry
Pocket: RT 2 slot pocket or Hilt of Earanil
Stats to be aware of
+800 crit from titles
+2400 crit from both settings
+2600 crit from both gems
+1450 crit from both crafted
+2900 from riffler
+1360 from gold cloak
+1300 from rune passive
+1200 from fate legacies
=around 14k crit without needing any essences
Getting around 9 t8 supreme tactical mastery essences+always having feasts of anorien buff up(they are fairly cheap per stack) to cap crit rating or you can just use normal crit rating essences to get it capped. Capping crit rating is absolutely essential and the option of capping crit rating by using crit rating essences depends mostly upon if you want the crit defense secondary stat bonus that is granted from having t8 supreme crit rating essences.
Just from having end game armor you should have atleast 2-3k tac mit automatically.
Add on passives from runestone and that is another 4k tac mit.
If you are using the FI jewelry then that is another 5600 tac mit
Add in 400 tac mit from title
That gets you close to 13k tac mit which with just 2-3 capped virtue you can get it to almost 16k which is the t1 cap for mits. With maxed out virtues you can get that to about 20k which will be your t2 mit cap without needing any essences. Whenever you are not doing t2 content it is advised to change your virtues to give you more will for mastery but using mits to reach t2 cap is advised since you can easily switch those out.
Same as with tac mit, this should be around 8k phys mit just because of armor.
Look back at legacies you will have a base 6.3k finesse so only 2 essences are needed.
This is a decent dps trait setup (I’m not at max points). One of the main things that you need to make note of that most RKs do not do and it severely hinders their dps is look at how i hybrided into yellow line. This gives me +5% crit chance which is a massive boost to dps. At the very minimum you will want around 70-71 although getting the max of 82 is ideal. https://lotro-wiki.com/index.php/Class_Trait_Point Is a link to where you can find how to get all the trait points you need.
In all honesty essences are entirely up to the player and how exactly they want their character. Essences allow a player to have alot of versatility and variety in what they choose although their are definitely stats that must be reached if you want to do endgame content.
These are the bare minimum stats that you should probably be reaching for t1 harder content:
22-24k health (player preference)
16k of both mits
17.7k crit rating
60-100k mastery (player preference/completed build)
24-25k health (can be higher depending on preferences)
20k of both mits
17.7k crit rating
T2c endgame/t2 raid
25k-28k health (buffed can be higher)
20k of both mits
17.7k crit rating
85k-100k mastery (completed build)
So at minimum those are the stats you will be wanting for the various content or atleast those are my recommendations (biased). There is absolutely no issue with dropping a little bit of mastery to get stuff like crit defence if you so prefer or for more mits etc.