1. #1
    High Overlord
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    Tanking Raids right off the bat?

    I'm only level 85 so this might seem a little early to be asking this, but I'm already thinking about later and trying to be prepared.

    I've been playing my monk as Brewmaster since level 30-something and have been enjoying it very much. I don't plan to play her as anything else if I can avoid it.
    Once I reach level 90 I definitely wanna try some raids. The question that arises is whether I can jump in as a tank right away, once I reach the iLvl requirement.

    Should a tank have better gear than the minimum requirement? Is reading a guide for the encounters enough to take the responsibilities of a tank? Or should I play the encounters as DPS a couple of times to become familiar with the overall feel of the fights?

    I know the last question is a little rhetorical. I guess I just want to know what your experiences were and what you would suggest.

    Thanks ...

  2. #2
    Herald of the Titans Nikkaszal's Avatar
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    Brewmasters are far, FAR more dependant on player skill over gear. Sure, higher ilvls do help, but a really really good Brewmaster in 460 kit is going to shit all over an average Brewmaster decked in 490.

    With regards to seeing the encounters for the first time - I recommend watching videos. The current LFR set-up (I assume you're talking about jumping into LFR rather than organised raids) is very amenable to this, as you only do three bosses at a time. So when you're just about ready to jump in, read through the dungeon journals of the section you're tackling to get an idea of what the basic fight gimmicks are, then jump on YouTube to have a look at it first-hand.

    I know when I first hit 90, I was a little nervous of Stone Guard (the first encounter you'll face) because I wasn't all that sure how the taunt switching was supposed to work and I didn't wanna fuck up and look like a prat. Turned out that the LFR strat was to just group the dogs all together and AoE so it was moot, but once I'd actually seen the fight play out it all finally made sense. If you wanna be fully prepared, watch a video. Only takes a minute or two, and most of the good ones will have voice-overs which explain the mechanics as they're happening.


    So in summary:

    Jump into LFR as soon as you're able, you'll do fine gear-wise. If any ignorant plebs call you out for having much lower HP than the other tank (you will), then you can just ignore them and act smug as your masterful active-mitigation skills result in you taking less damage than the other tank anyway. Of course, to HAVE those masterful active-mitigation skills (which Brewmasters literally live and die by) you should keep your practise up with 5-mans and make sure you're perusing the excellent sticky guides here and on EJ and such. I won't go into more detail about raid tanking as the guides cover it better than I could, but you seem like a sensible person so I think you'll be okay =D
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  3. #3
    Stood in the Fire Yorgl's Avatar
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    I agree with Nikkaszal : as long as you're prepared (©Illdian) don't hesistate playing your main spec. Read the dungeon codex, watch video (I advise Fatboss TV on youtube : they're hilarious and their guides are neat) and focus on our very special gameplay.

    Sometimes, you'll get crushed eventhough you feel like playing as you should. Don't be bumped down : I'm pretty sure all of us had this kind of experience as BrM but you have to admit that, at this point you have to step your game up, improve your use of, e.g, PB or Shuffle uptime and try harder. As said above, it's really dependant on skill and a bad BrM will feel very squishy. It happens, and in this case don't be afraid and keep improving .

    Have fun !

  4. #4
    There's one thing I will say about tanking experiences: I went through this, and I think most Brewmasters have this phase at some point (judging by some comments we had on these forums a couple months ago), so it'd probably be useful to be aware of it before it happens.

    So what happened to me was I was levelling, tanking instances, having no issues whatsoever. I then hit level 90, got a bit of crafted gear, went into heroics... And I got owned. Primarily on AoE trash, but it happened a lot. My healers complained, and it made me stop and think. What am I doing wrong?

    Basically it's this: in AoE primarily, I was forgetting about Blackout Kick. I was instead using Breath of Fire, because y'know, it's the AoE tool. Right? You don't use single target abilities on AoE, that's just silly!

    The problem there though is that Blackout Kick is more than just DPS: it stacks Shuffle as well. So without Shuffle, I was taking far more damage than I should've done. I also had very low crit (due to lack of gear primarily) so didn't get much EB stacks. So in general, I just wasn't paying attention to my active mitigation abilities. I also didn't have my UI set up correctly to track this stuff, so simply put: in general, I was taking far more damage than I should've done.

    Take the time to set up your UI to track EB, Shuffle, Guard, all those wonderful things. Get Weak Auras and set up some icons to track them, or get one of the addons suggested in the Brewmaster guide stickied on these forums. Use your active mitigation; never ignore it, especially when undergeared! It's so, SO vital.

    That was my experience with tanking as a Monk, at any rate. It's tons of fun once you get used to it, but there is a learning curve. It can hurt whilst you're learning, but don't be disheartened. The class is very rewarding once you get it right.

  5. #5
    For the most part, heroic dungeons are faceroll. Even in poor gear, you're usually fine.

    Tanking even LFR stuff is another matter. For me, there was a tipping point in gear. Up until Ilvl 470 or so, I ran into energy starvation more often than I would have liked. Some of that was poor play (stacking shuffle too high and neglecting PB and Guards). But really it was the stat combination that comes from higher Ilvl gear. Once I reached the point where I didn't have to reforge to get to hit and expertise caps because the gear had enough innate hit/exp, I felt like the class increased in survivability almost exponentially.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Kisho View Post
    Basically it's this: in AoE primarily, I was forgetting about Blackout Kick. I was instead using Breath of Fire, because y'know, it's the AoE tool. Right? You don't use single target abilities on AoE, that's just silly!
    Going to hijack this to ask a question that I keep meaning to find an answer to: When exactly should I use Breath of Fire?

    I'm main spec WW, but I tend to tank 5 mans and LFR for faster queues, and I never use Breath of Fire. It seems like I need to spend all my Chi on Purify Brew/BoK/RJW for mitigation purposes, and there is never an opportunity to use BoF without losing shuffle.

    Is it pretty much only for doing 5 mans that me and my healer hilariously outgear to the point where I don't really need to care about shuffle?

  7. #7
    It's usually not used unless ridiculously over geared or healing otherwise being trivial. Or if you have a ridiculous shuffle stack. Only fight I actively use it on when I remember is feng heroic on the shadow adds (short aoe burn phase where killing the adds is more important than the extra survivability)

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Halifax View Post
    Is it pretty much only for doing 5 mans that me and my healer hilariously outgear to the point where I don't really need to care about shuffle?
    Unfortunately that's exactly it. Breath of Fire is 'the' iconic Brewmaster ability, but currently we just can't justify its use beyond outgeared content and 'maybe' when we have an excess of Shuffle stored up so can afford to spend 2 chi on it.

    It's a DPS increase on AoE, but you can't sacrifice Shuffle for it. So mostly, it just can't be used. Shame. Also bosses being immune to Dizzying Haze, thus not getting the burn DoT, limits its use as well.

  9. #9
    Herald of the Titans Nikkaszal's Avatar
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    You can fit BoF's into most trash packs in 5-man's for two reasons:

    1) they die really fast, so you can spend the whole time running on Shuffle fumes rather than stacking it. That is to say, you only need to BoK once every 6 sec.

    2) And this is the big one - you rarely need to PB in 5-man's as long as you're using your toolkit (e.g. stuns and disarms) effectively. This saves a ton of Chi.
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