Thursday, September 25, 2008

Warrior Tanking

This blog is primarily for my philosophy, but I'm also a gamer.

Before Burning Crusade, I AOE tanked a few times, and it turned out that I was really good at it.

I found reading this unbearable.
"Warriors and Druids cannot easily tag large groups of mobs, which can cause healer deaths to occur too quickly"
Are you insane? It's called demo shout, an integral part of your mitigation array. If I were you, I'd bind it to C so I can tap it without even thinking. (I don't use wasd, so C is the wrong place for me.)

When I was tanking, I often wondered if my healers were even generating aggro. There's also no problem with hunter pulls; melee the one they hit and get the rest with demo shout. When I'm playing a warrior, I don't need a pulling skill; I usually got my warlock friend to pull for me, because he knows the pulls better.

So, warrior AOE tanking. Pre-BC, rend was actually one of your most efficient damage skills, second only to the tier 7 talents. I found that rend alone was enough to hold healer aggro. And of course for AOE it's your friend because it's efficient to fire and forget. (When your main target loses rend, refresh on all the others as well.)

I didn't use thunder clap for anything but the damage reduction, because I wasn't sure how much bonus threat it it's just a pain to stance dance too often. Instead, I spammed demo shout in between sunders. Every few seconds I'd switch targets to keep the sunder stacks and rend up on the other mobs.

Now with BC, devastate would make this tactic even more effective, although there is a limit - it's not like BC paladins where you can just spam blizzard on them, which I'll go into below.

AOE talents. The only reason I didn't take booming voice was that it would pull adds, especially with the frequency I use demo shout. But if you're intentionally AOEing, booming voice is just awesome - refreshing two minute buffs really sucks. Similarly, improved rend would drastically increase my ability to AOE tank.

And now, with the new AOE talents and abilities in Wrath, putting rend on everything is just the icing on the cake. Personally, I find paladin tanking too easy. I should have to switch targets a lot if they're under heavy AOE fire.

But yes, this is limited; it cannot tank arbitrary numbers of mobs the way paladin AOE can.
And yes, the threat on demo shout, our target-indifferent skill, doesn't scale at all, which sucks. It's still good for grabbing initial aggro, however, since you should be casting it anyway. Even if thunder clap were buffed to AOE well, you can't choose which four targets it hits, though if you somehow could it would work just fine.

But frankly, demo shout should scale with gear anyway (use set bonuses) and the threat should scale with the debuff, so that improved demo shout is basically the premiere AOE tanking talent.

However, if nothing else, a simple AOE rend would completely solve the problem. Or, give shockwave or something a high hit chance and then get deep wounds. Make those fuckers bleed and they'll never so much as flinch.

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