CC for Dummies, aka Crowd Control and You: A Guide for Even Bigger Dummies...
CC for Dummies
aka Crowd Control and You: A Guide for Even Bigger Dummies
1. Save Your Group: What CC is and why your tank and healer love you for using it.
2. Start with the Basics: Where communication is not just telling the scrub how bad they are.
3. Not All Control is Created Equal: Different types and effects of CC.
4. Abilities Per Class: Knowing your job and using what is available.
a. Death Knight
1. Save Your Group!
Oh World of Warcraft, you have given us so many things over the years. There has been rage, sorrow, frustration and agony. There has been immaturity, ninjas and pirates. Then there were the underlying mechanics that made all of these things, good and bad, possible. Most of these happened to be things that were common sense, and indeed required to be at the top of your game. The era of Wrath of the Lich King, intentionally or unintentionally, changed most of that concept. Where the expansion succeeded in bringing more casual players into the fan base, most of the real challenge was lost along the way. Granted, heroic mode bosses seemed to present a little more thought and required a bit more strategy, but it still felt lackluster. One of the biggest missing parties, at least to me, was Crowd Control.
Whether players were new, or just plain lazy, CC was something that was lost very early on. So, what is Crowd Control? Essentially it is keeping an enemy occupied so more important tasks can be accomplished. It is not just a PvE thing, many forms work just as well in PvP even if the effects are not the same. The more enemies you have distracted, the less they will hit you. Depending on your class, you'll either be grateful that you're not during, grateful that you have less threat to watch, or grateful that your dps are not getting one shotted for whatever reason.
As many have discovered, Cataclysm is now giving the above mentioned lazy and casual players whiplash from the ramped up difficulty level. It has happened with other games, Devil May Cry 3 comes to mind, where due to fans complaining about content being just too easy, the makers decide to make everyone eat that opinion. Some people are never satisfied though, the rest of is just have to do what we can to keep each other slightly sane. Through the rest of the guide, we will take a look at the different kinds of CC, basics of use, a list of common spells and pictures of what they look like.
2. Start with the Basics…
Those players who were around for the adventure through Vanilla and Burning Crusade should be familiar with the concepts of CC, and should be theoretically shifting back into the mood and swing of thing. However, new players and those who came along during Wrath are probably not trained in the fine arts of sheeping and such. Communication is a wonderful thing, and there are more than enough ways to get points across that there is no reason to sit in silence.
However, silence is preferable to the common asshattery that tends to permeate most servers. My soapbox side would preach about good-will and taking other players under wings to make everyone play well, but I know that won't happen. What could happen however is some helpful tips, maybe explaining what the tanks want done, whatever. Calling people scrubs and noobs doesn't help anyone in particular, it breeds need rage and all sorts of contempt. So, what can be done?
Hopefully everyone by now has seen the target icons, if not the new beacon style just introduced. Marks are most commonly used for attack orders, most dangerous gets zerged first. The difference is that instead of just Skull and X, many of the others come into play. If the tank even somewhat knows what needs to go down first, it is usually simple to let everyone know what mark to take. CC your given target, then jump back in to kill the original target. Sometimes a reapply will be needed, just keep your eyes open.
Cooperation is commonly needed while casting because many CC abilities instantly pull the targeted mob. This works best with a countdown so casts go off at relatively the same time. There is also less chance of errant AOE attacks breaking the control the further the targets are away from the action. Just more common sense all around.
There are rare occasions that a tank will request a line of sight pull via CC. More often than not, it will be if there is only one extended CC available. In that case, even the casters who stubbornly stay out are forced to move to the group instead.
PvP becomes much more situational, many of the spells becoming modified due to rules against other players. Working in a group at that point changes many dynamics. It, again, all comes down to communication between team members.
In any case, it's more about being aware of your abilities and being aware of your surroundings. If a tank does not mark it up or mention anything, offer your CC services. Worst case situation is that you get dropped from group, but any group that kicks someone for attempting to help is pretty much better off on their own. Let them struggle, wait for a group who will appreciate and work together.
3. Not All Control is Created Equal…
Many things that get lumped under the banner of CC have less in common than cats and dogs. Some are used before the initial pull, others are used during the pull. Others range from scattering a bad pull, taking over control of enemies to use in the fight, or for one on one fights just stunning long enough to get some distance. There are other specifics that come to play with some abilities, those that are broken by damage vs. those that are not, lengths of time the target is effected vs. estimated kill times on other enemies. Many abilities will only work against certain kinds of enemies as well, such as humanoids, beasts or elementals.
Different situations and group make-ups change the dynamic of every encounter, and what may have worked for one may not work for another. No amount of good CC tactics will save a group from a crazy tank that runs in and drops an AOE taunt effect in the middle of damage sensitive control. Communication is yet again a big player, perhaps a shorter duration scatter effect would work better in such a bind.
Things like Hex and Polymorph.
Short-term scatter effects:
Things like Fear, Turn Evil and Scare Beast.
Pet-like bind effects:
Things like Bind Demon and Mind Control.
Things like Gouge, Chains of Ice, and Hungering Cold.
4. Abilities Per Class
Below is an extensive list of CC abilities, sorted by class. Each has been linked, but also has the tooltip listed beside it. Many of them are learned from trainers and grow in power as the character levels. A few are only opened with specific specialization talents, which has been noted in parentheses after the ability title. Also just for kicks, images have been added of icons and graphic effects if there is something unique about the ability.
Death Knights are limited to only short-term stun abilities. Used mostly for solo questing and PvP, they could also be useful in situational instances. Chains of Ice: Shackles the target with frozen chains, reducing their movement to 95% and infects them with Frost Fever. The target regains 10% of their movement each second for 10 seconds.
Hungering Cold (Frost): Purges the earth around the Death Knight of all heat. Enemies within 10 yards are trapped in ice, preventing them from performing any action for 10 seconds and infecting them with Frost Fever. Enemies are considered Frozen, but any damage other than diseases will break the ice.
Druids can not cast their CC while in shapeshift other than Moonkin, so Feral is out of luck for the most part. Again, situations could prove differently, however Kitty dps is usually sneaking up on a target, sneaking bears are usually concerned with other things. Entangling Roots: Roots the target in place and causes X Nature damage over Y seconds. Damage caused may interrupt the effect.
Hibernate: Forces the enemy Target to sleep for up to 40 seconds. Any damage will awaken the target. Only one target can be forced to hibernate at a time. Only works on Beasts and Dragonkin.
Trap Launcher has made things much easier for Hunters, who no longer have to creep up close android hope that a given target will stumble into the trap. Certain pets, such as spiders, can also snare targets for small amounts of time. Freezing Trap: Place a frost trap that freezes the first enemy that approaches, preventing all action for up to 1 minute. Any damage caused will break the ice. (Works great with Trap Launcher.)
Scare Beast: Scares a beast, causing it to run in fear for up to 20 seconds. Damage caused may interrupt the effect. Only one beast can be feared at a time.
Possibly the most famous CC, Polymorph has taken many forms that can be learned from various sources. No longer is the spell bound to the infamous sheep. Polymorph: Transforms the enemy into a sheep, forcing it to wander around for up to 50 seconds. While wandering, the seep cannot attack or cast spells but will regenerate very quickly. Any damage will transform the target back into its normal form. Only one target can be polymorphed at a time. Only works on Beasts, Humanoids and Critters.
Due to the source of their powers, Paladins are limited by the types of enemies that they can CC. Strong against undead, abilities become limited use. Turn Evil: The targeted undead or demon enemy will be compelled to flee for up to 20 seconds. Damage caused may interrupt the effect. Only on target can be turned at a time.
Repentance (Retribution): Puts the enemy target in a state of meditation, incapacitating them for up to 1 minute (down to 7 seconds in PvP). Any damage caused will awaken the target. Usable against Demons, Dragonkin, Giants, Humanoids and Undead.
Suffice to say, Mind Control can prove to be entertaining in both PvP and PvE content. Controlling an enemy target and bending them to your will, what else could be better? Shackle Undead: Shackles the target undead enemy for up to X seconds. The shackled unit is unable to move, attack or cast spells. Any damage caused will release the target. Only one target may be shackled at a time.
Mind Control: Controls a humanoid mind up to level X, but increases the time between attacks by 25%. Lasts up to 1 minute.
Psychic Scream: You terrify the target, causing them to tremble in horror for 3 seconds and drop all their main hand and ranged weapons for 10 seconds.
Sap is the only CC that does not send entire mobs into hysterical rage fits, but it is also the only long-term effect that requires the player be really up and in someone's business. Upshot is casting coordination is not really needed either. Sap: Incapacitates the target for a short period. Only 1 target may be sapped at a time. Requires Stealth. Only works on Humanoids, Beasts, Demons and Dragonkin that are not in combat. Any damage will revive the target.
Gouge: Deals small amount of damage and incapacitates enemy for 4 seconds as long as they are not hit again. Turns off auto-attack. Must be in front of the enemy.
Shaman CC is a rather new addition, Hex being added with the level 80 cap, and Bind Elemental as of patch 4.0. They are also limited by what they can cast upon, but it is still humorous to see a target hopping around as an extremely confused frog. Hex: Transforms the enemy into a frog. While hexed, the target cannot attack or cast spells. Damage caused may interrupt the effect. Lasts 30 seconds. Only one target can be hexed at a time. Only works on Humanoids and Beasts.
Bind Elemental: Binds the target hostile elemental for up to 50 seconds. The bound unit is unable to move, attack or cast spells. Any damage caused will release the target. Only one target can be bound at a time.
Warlocks are the kings of scatter effects. Along with their demons, terror and fear tend to be their greatest allies. Fear: Strikes fear in the enemy, causing it to run in fear for up to 10 seconds. Damage caused may interrupt the effect. Only 1 target can be feared at a time.
Enslave Demon: Enslaves the target demon, up to level X, forcing it to do the Warlock’s bidding. While enslaved, the time between the demon’s attacks in increased by 30% and its casting speed is slowed by 20%. Lasts up to 5 minutes.
Banish: Banishes the target for X seconds, preventing it for doing anything, but also making it invulnerable. Works only on Elementals and Demons. Only one target can be Banished at a time.
Howl of Terror: Howl, causing 5 enemies within 10 yards to flee in terror for X seconds. Damage caused may interrupt the effect.
Much like the Death Knight, the up close and personal nature of the class leans well toward short-term stuns. Most Warriors would rather see their targets dead than stunned anyway. Intimidating Shout: The warrior shouts, causing up to 5 enemies within 8 yards to cower in fear. The targeted enemy will be unable to move while cowering. Lasts 8 seconds.
Throwdown (Arms): Knocks the target to the ground and stuns it for 5 seconds.
It is my hope that you take something away from this short guide, whether it be new abilities you did not know you had, or perhaps only to have a little more patience with your groups. Most people can't read your mind, so you need to speak up and be heard!
Credits and such...
Links and icon images are borrowed from MMO Champion. All other images are borrowed from the wonderful posters at Wowhead.com. Everything else, including possible bad phrasing and questionable research, is mine.
main is a SP. MC is the most often-maligned CC, probably b/c tanks dont understand how to work with it. (
I regularly top DPS meters using MC and occassionally healing meters, too But there IS a learning curve involved ~ you have to know a) what abilities the target mob has; and, b) how to use those abilities effectively in a 30-second span; and, c) how to re-aquire your target quickly when the MC drops.
The last is where MC pulls usually go all wonky. Tanks/DPS panic at the loose mob and dot it up, ruinin the chance to MC again. Also, the SP 'should' have the target focused, be out of the way of the anticipated area where most of the fighting is ( SP using MC can NOT move or heal himself !!) . Best method imho is to have Psychic Horror handy, and stop the target - who is barreling down your throat asap the MC ends - and the re-MC while he is bedazzled.
Sadly, most grps I pug with see MC as a way for the pack of mobs to kill one of their own, and that's it. ( really a pity.
There's a bit of misinformation here, as well as some forgotten spells (if you are including Throwdown as a short term CC, why is no mention made of the infamous pally stun?) You should also mention the changes from glyphing fear effects. Additionally, this could seriously use some formatting and spellchecking.
THAT SAID, I appreciate the effort and hope at least someone will learn from this!
Originally Posted by Seahippo
We are gunna use some dust brown to paint some happy little tornados here, and one more here. Then we are going to use some white to paint happy little wind blasts here. Just dab the brush along the base of al akir, and there you have it. THE GAYEST FIGHT EVER