Thread: Tanking

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  1. #1
    Mechagnome warex00's Avatar
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    Tanking

    Hey. I've been thinking of giving the tanking role a go for a long time. Been playing healer and dps for most of my wow career.

    Could anyone here with long experience in tanking give me a little general info when it comes to tanking?

    - How is the playstyle?
    - Do you get bored often? (boring tanking mechanics from the boss)
    - How is the difficulty of tanking?

  2. #2
    Tanking is probably the easiest but when you fail, people tend to lash out pretty harsh. Most bosses are simple taunt after "x" stacks or after an certain ability.

    Don't really get bored of tanking because I'm tanking with a druid and some fights only require one tank so I can go dps. Anyone can get into tanking. Just read a guide of the class you want to start tanking with and you'll learn while playing.

  3. #3
    You find tanking the easiest role?

    Well, i dont think so.

    I play a paladin, both tanking and dpsing, actively raiding. Also played a priest as holy healer during cata. Granted, im not in a top guild, not even close, but manage clearing normal raids and most of the heroics.

    I find tanking the hardest role, on average. Of course, it depends on the encounter, but usually tanks all the tasks dps have + some extra ones.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Wasboz View Post
    Tanking is probably the easiest but when you fail, people tend to lash out pretty harsh. Most bosses are simple taunt after "x" stacks or after an certain ability.

    Don't really get bored of tanking because I'm tanking with a druid and some fights only require one tank so I can go dps. Anyone can get into tanking. Just read a guide of the class you want to start tanking with and you'll learn while playing.
    Don't listen to a word he says

    Sure, on normal modes, you taunt after X amount of stacks or certain abilities, but on normal mode as a dps you don't stand in fire and do your rotation, everything is basically easy in normal modes.

    Come harder content, though, tanking becomes a very challenging and superinteresting role. Positioning of bosses becomes extremely important, you need very good cooldown management and a good understanding of fight mechanics. Then there is all the utility that a lot of the tanking classes can bring (I play a prot warr, so for me it's all the banners, shattering throw, safeguard, interrupts etc.), and nowadays it has also become quite important to optimize DPS as a tank, as this can be a significant number in most fights.

    If you play a tank in a raiding environment that is somewhat serious, you will most likely find yourself not just tanking but also working with the raidleader to coordinate strategies. Tanks play a vital role in the execution of strategies, and if you make mistakes it is very easy to cause a wipe.

    There are a few fights that are superboring as a tank, fights like sha of fear normal, lei shi is a nightmare, spirit kings is annoying, but there's also a bunch of fights that are a lot of fun to tank (stone guard hc is nice, feng is interesting, wind lord is cool because of the dps you get to do, blade lord has interesting positioning, I still really enjoy heroic elegon and the dancing on will of the emp)

    The playstyle depends greatly on what class you choose to tank with. I find warrior to be very versatile, whereas some other classes are perhaps more one-sided.

    Tanking is one of those things that is relatively easy to learn, but extremely difficult to master. Really good tanks seem to just be able to take less damage, steer entire raids towards success, have the presence of mind to safeguard a healer about to die and charge right back in without missing a beat etc. It takes a lot of practice to get acquainted with the entire scope of possibilities.

    Then again, there are a lot of tanks that just sort of coast by, use their rotation, stand in front of a boss and kill some normal mode bosses. It really depends on what you're looking to get out of it. For me, it's the only role I enjoy playing.

  5. #5
    Stood in the Fire Riemu2k3's Avatar
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    You should clarify abit, what your intentions are. What do you wanna tank? What kind of content do you wanna experience? 5-Man Heroic? LFR? Normal Raids? Heroic Raids? Progression?

    Answers to your questions depend on that.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by warex00 View Post
    Hey. I've been thinking of giving the tanking role a go for a long time. Been playing healer and dps for most of my wow career.

    Could anyone here with long experience in tanking give me a little general info when it comes to tanking?

    - How is the playstyle?
    - Do you get bored often? (boring tanking mechanics from the boss)
    - How is the difficulty of tanking?
    Tanking is not the easiest, I would say it's the hardest but that is solely because of the amount of responsibility that comes with it.

    Most of the time if a tank screws up it's a wipe. Especially with the AM system right now (threat is a non-issue) you have to be active to survive.

    Situational awareness comes into play.

    The best way to learn all of this is by going out there and doing it. Good luck!
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  7. #7
    Tanking is relatively simple (usually) but there's a HEAP of pressure to do it right. If you fail, people notice.
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  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by warex00 View Post
    Hey. I've been thinking of giving the tanking role a go for a long time. Been playing healer and dps for most of my wow career.
    As someone who has a main DPS and plays healer (Holy priest) as alt (mostly LFR and 5man, mind you) I am in the same position. While I don't do much raiding, let alone 25m Heroics, I hope the following helps:

    - How is the playstyle?
    As a Protection Warrior, it is more challenging than being a ranged DPS, just standing there, shooting whatever you have at a stationary target. You have to pay attention from the start, build up aggro while making sure you pay attention to adds and use cooldowns to mitigate incoming damage. All while you are looking for AoE to avoid and push out some extra DPS where possible. All in all, much more fun than being a DPS, and somewhat more "rewarding" when all goes well.

    - Do you get bored often? (boring tanking mechanics from the boss)
    Hard to say for me, since I don't do competitive raiding. The encounters that I did tank previously are not boring, because there is much going on. Although with the easier threat generation, it has gotten a little more boring, because you don't have to work as hard as you used to. But I guess that has shifted to avoiding/mitigating big hits and using your abilities right to do more damage when possible.

    - How is the difficulty of tanking?
    Another question that greatly depends on the content you play. For normal dungeons and LFR, it's not too hard when you know what to do. Just be sure to taunt off the other tank on some fights and make sure you know when to move/stack/avoid/etc. Most of the "difficulty" comes from the fact that you can not slack during the fights. DPS can easily put on auto-attack and grab some food. They might die after a while, but they are not really missed. As a tank, you need to focus, because otherwise the group will wipe. This brings more "pressure" than you have in other roles, although healers come close
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  9. #9
    if 1 thing i has learned from tanking over the years, is that ppl will expect you to know stuff bether then the rest. If your pugging your pritty mutch always leading. Being a tank is more demanding in terms of social skills and experience. Atleast thats how ppl turn to me, and how i judge good tanks.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by warex00 View Post
    - How is the playstyle?
    Depends on the class, but overall it's very active. You have to make your 'DPS rotation' second nature, so you can be focused on what's going on in the fight. Are adds spawning? Where from? Is the boss about to do a huge attack which you'll need a CD for? Do you need to move out of anything, or drag the boss to a specific spot?

    Furthermore, with MoP, all tanks are in far greater control of the damage they take. With decent skill, you'll take minimal damage while dealing a fair bit of it as well. It's pretty fun.

    Quote Originally Posted by warex00 View Post
    - Do you get bored often? (boring tanking mechanics from the boss)
    Not in the slightest! Monk tanking specifically is the most fun I've had in the game for a LONG time. That said though, in general we're very far from the days of Mother Shahraz, where tanks just stood on one spot and soaked damage. Most fights have something interesting for tanks to do. The only dull fights I can think of this tier are Garalon (since my guild doesn't use tanks to kite anymore, we're getting everyone practice for heroic mode) and Sha of Fear (which is only really dull because it takes so long). Every other fight has something interesting and fun for us to do.

    Quote Originally Posted by warex00 View Post
    - How is the difficulty of tanking?
    Skill cap is fairly high, I'd say. Definitely more difficult than DPSing, at least. Healing I have no idea, I don't do it so cannot compare. But for tanking specifically... It's pretty challenging in MoP. But once you get it, and finish a fight with minimal damage taken and your healers congratulating you on being super easy to heal... Yeah, it's rewarding.

    Hope that helps. Tanking is a lot of fun once you get the hang of it, but it isn't for everyone. Hence the satchel of exotic mysteries in LFD, I guess. :P

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Wasboz View Post
    Tanking is probably the easiest but when you fail, people tend to lash out pretty harsh. Most bosses are simple taunt after "x" stacks or after an certain ability.

    Don't really get bored of tanking because I'm tanking with a druid and some fights only require one tank so I can go dps. Anyone can get into tanking. Just read a guide of the class you want to start tanking with and you'll learn while playing.
    Related, tanking with paladin...not so easy.

  12. #12
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    firstly, dont be scared of tanking. Its really not hard, its no more pressure than you give yourself. Its become so easy it is boring in my opinion, but your milage may differ.

    Probbaly the most important things are:

    Learn to pull casters. Whether its with grips, silences, or line of sight, learn to group up caster mobs.
    Put your enemies cast bar in a convenient place, get good at interrupting, dont rely on dps to do it!
    Use CDs, esp shortish ones, often. Dont hoard them. Use them on trash, use them on the pull. Unless you have a specific reason to save them, use them, your healers will appreciate it.
    Set healers as focus, make sure you dont run far out of range (thats you warriors!) and dont pull if your healer has low mana, unless they tell you to.
    Start every intance at a moderate pace, to see how the healer and dps copes. Dont be a "gogogo" tank, and then spend more time wiping and running back than a sensible pace would have taken for a clean clear..

    And, most importantly, dont be afraid to ask stuff. People hardly ever mind people asking pre-pull, but kind of get irked if people only ask after wipes. Dont become and egowhore tank, dont get to thinking you are teh centre of teh universe, you are not.
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  13. #13
    There's a reason most raid leaders are tanks - they have a lot more time to watch their surroundings than DPS or healers. Gameplay-wise it's arguably the easiest to do OK. Your DPS doesn't matter much and it's impossible to lose aggro nowadays, so you don't have to focus so hard on rotations/procs/resource management and you have more time to focus on who is standing in crap etc. You just mash buttons as you please, taunt every now and then and rely on your healers to keep you alive.
    In cutting edge guilds, tanking is obviously more difficult that that because they are doing content undergeared, so tanks have to know their stuff in order to minimize the damage they are taking.
    As others have already said, the difficult part of being a tank in a raiding guild comes from the stuff not so much related to gameplay itself. If a DPS fucks up, nothing major happens (unless they blow up whole raid with wind bomb), but if a tank fucks up, it's a wipe most of the times which can and will aggravate everyone in the raid if it happens repeatedly.

    This is for raid tanking though. If you just want to give tanking a shot in 5mans, it's a lot of fun - trying to pull as much mobs as fast as possible without wiping, figuring out the fastest way around the instance etc. But be warned, tanking in 5mans doesn't have much in common with tanking in raids. EG: I loved tanking heroic halls of reflection with warrior - it really let the class shine. But I hated tanking with the war in raid.
    Last edited by h4rr0d; 2013-01-14 at 10:03 AM.

  14. #14
    I've tanked, healed, and dps'ed heroic raids on every class except Monk.

    With boss timers, tanking is pretty straightforward. You know when the damage will come in and you use your abilities accordingly. If it's not enough to stay alive, then you shuffle your CD rotation around and get better gear. My fingers often cramp up while tanking just because of all the button mashing. It's the same with melee dps.

    I would say healing is easier that tanking. Once I knew the hps and regen limits of the class/gear, there was no pressure. Sometimes you just have to triage and let someone die (especially if it's a DPS doing something stupid). When things are going well, there isn't much to do.
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  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by h4rr0d View Post
    There's a reason most raid leaders are tanks - they have a lot more time to watch their surroundings than DPS or healers. Gameplay-wise it's arguably the easiest to do OK. Your DPS doesn't matter much and it's impossible to lose aggro nowadays, so you don't have to focus so hard on rotations/procs/resource management and you have more time to focus on who is standing in crap etc. You just mash buttons as you please, taunt every now and then and rely on your healers to keep you alive.
    And yet with the new active mitigation model, there's a whole lot more to actually tanking than 'mash[ing] buttons as you please'. I actually find that I raid led a lot better as a ranged DPSer than as a tank for precisely the reason you state, just the other way around. I have a lot more time to watch the raid as a ranged DPS, but when I'm tanking I have a lot more to consider personally.

    Furthermore, any tank that would 'rely on your healers to keep you alive', by which I assume means the tank doesn't have to worry about their active mitigation... Those tanks would be horrendous to heal and swiftly booted from raids. Sure, that was the case in prior expansions, but not in MoP. It's a different game now with active mitigation.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Kisho View Post
    And yet with the new active mitigation model, there's a whole lot more to actually tanking than 'mash[ing] buttons as you please'. I actually find that I raid led a lot better as a ranged DPSer than as a tank for precisely the reason you state, just the other way around. I have a lot more time to watch the raid as a ranged DPS, but when I'm tanking I have a lot more to consider personally.

    Furthermore, any tank that would 'rely on your healers to keep you alive', by which I assume means the tank doesn't have to worry about their active mitigation... Those tanks would be horrendous to heal and swiftly booted from raids. Sure, that was the case in prior expansions, but not in MoP. It's a different game now with active mitigation.
    I always found it difficult to lead a raid while tanking because of the boss cock-blocking my vision.
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  17. #17
    That too! Tanking High King Maulgar was fun... Constant crotch shots, in the face. Tasty. D:

    EDIT: And uh, that line didn't really come out right.
    Last edited by Kisho; 2013-01-14 at 10:28 AM.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aquamonkey View Post
    I always found it difficult to lead a raid while tanking because of the boss cock-blocking my vision.
    Agreed. You lack that perspective necessary to call things whilst staring into a bosses groin area.

    I've always found healers make the best raid leaders if they can handle the additional work. They usually spot problems early on as they are naturally focussed on the health of the raid, and they have to be as, if not more, aware as tanks of boss abilities to plan an coordinate healing CDs.
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  19. #19
    Scarab Lord Zka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aquamonkey View Post
    I always found it difficult to lead a raid while tanking because of the boss cock-blocking my vision.
    This. The worst one ever has to be Magtheridon imo. Huge ass boss which you had to tank with your back against a wall. Have fun raidleading like that
    Tanking against walls is mostly gone fortunately, but the bosses usually are still huge, so this is not an ideal position for raid lead. Ideal RL position is some simple ranged dps like frostmage.

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  20. #20
    Herald of the Titans Christan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kethmil View Post
    You find tanking the easiest role?

    Well, i dont think so.

    I play a paladin, both tanking and dpsing, actively raiding
    as far as tanking goes, pala and dk are the easiest of them,
    i play a monk and after things become muscle memory it is indeed the easiest role.

    you also have to know the fights, grab a guildie tank, have him take ya through some heroics paying attention to what he is doing, have him do some running commentary, etc.
    when you get a feel for what needs to be done only thing left is deciding what to level, then reading class / gearing guides

    boredom though op? it depends on which fight, when i heal i was always more engaged and less bored than when i tank, and i've been tanking since wotlk(prot pala, and holy priest) in bc i healed / dps'd(rogue and holy priest) cata i tanked and healed(feral and resto shama) while still doing a bit on my priest,

    atm any class that can tank, that i have does tank, 2 90 tanks atm being guardian and brewmaster(my main)
    here's a list of my chars http://openraid.us/c/4288/201712
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