Firelands – Shannox and Beth’Tilac.

Posted On October 6, 2011

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Oh, the IRONY!

My role has changed recently to Caster DPS as a result of a surfeit of Tanks in Two kings (trust me, it’s not a complaint) and I’m currently Raiding as a Boomkin and not doing too shabbily (well, except for Alysrazor, but everyone knows lazerchikkins can’t fly!) but all the drops I’ve been sucking up for my now Off-Spec/former Main-Spec are Feral pieces, including a damned shiny staff off of Majordomo Stagheim. No T13 shoulders yet, but next week if/when I get those I’ll have the 2-piece T12 and the 2-piece T13 to work with as Boomkin and we’ll see what happens there.

I know that there are other folk what play Bears who are in the same situation and believe me when I say I feel your pain. I’m a perfectly capable tank 99% of the time, but when the tanks you currently run with are as geared out as Kann (Mug’thol) and Laplace (Mug’thol) are you’re along for the ride, and baby, I’m gonna ride this for as long as I can.

I have to be brutally honest here: Blizzard has done some interesting things, but Firelands can’t hold a candle to the sheer fun that was Ulduar. For me, that particular Raid instance was the most fun I’ve had, bar the wiping on the same 4 bosses for 9 weeks in a row when it first came out and everyone was still in 200s and 2500DPS was unheard of.  With Firelands, however, there’s opportunity to discover the full utility of your class and in particular the limits of Balance.

On Shannox I’m not using all of my AoE abilities, that’s a straight up DPS race and don’t stand in stuff fight for me, and it bores me to tears. I’d rather tank that fight. Beth’tilac is where the different AoE spells I have are really used.

From Typhoon to Fungal Growth to Starfall to Hurricane, all of them are used as frequently as they’re off cooldown or I have mana. I volunteered for add duty on that particular fight because I’ve always been the straight up DPSer. Balance can hit like a truck given enough standing still and cast times, but to me if I’m playing a DPS class that’s just BORING. It’s the same spell over and over and over (O hai Wrath) until the energy bar has swung all the way to the opposite side and then another spell (O hai Starfire) over and over and over until we’re back on the opposite side. There’s very little to the rotation other than sticking in a Moonfire and an Insect Swarm to keep debuffs on the MoB or Boss going.

On Spiderling duty in the B’T fight I’m using Typhoon to get me a little extra time to toss down a string of Mushrooms, detonating them and adding Starfall and Hurricane to burn the Spiderlings down with assistance from another DPS. This keeps me running from side to side during the fight and on my toes, which I LOVE.

Next post: Lord Rhyolith or No, I’M Driving!

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DRUID CHANGES IN CATA!

Druid

Forums | Talent Calculator

  • Bear Form now provides 10% bonus health, down from 20%.
  • Nourish no longer consumes Omen of Clarity.
  • Rejuvenation has had its mana cost increased by 30%.
  • Soothe now has a 1.5-second cast time.
  • Swipe (Cat Form) can now be used even if the druid does not have a primary target selected.
  • Thorns: beginner tooltip revised to no longer imply the spell could be kept up at all times. In addition, Thorns damage has been reduced by 60%.

Balance

  • PvP set bonus redesigned. While not in an Eclipse state, critical attacks against the druid restore 5 Solar or 7 Lunar energy, whichever is more beneficial. This effect can only occur once every 6 seconds.

Feral

  • Brutal Impact now increases the mana cost of spells on the victim by 5/10% for 10 seconds, down from 15/30%.
  • Leader of the Pack now heals for 4%, down from 8%.
  • Survival Instincts now provides 50% damage reduction, down from 60%, and its cooldown has been lowered from 5 minutes to 3 minutes.
  • Swipe (Bear Form) damage has been reduced by 20%.
  • Vengeance is no longer cleared on exiting Bear Form, and instead is cleared upon entering Cat Form.

Restoration

Glyphs

Bug Fixes

Dreddnought & Charlton’s Easy Dungeon PuG Rules

Posted On July 21, 2010

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There are a LOT of good DPSers out there in WoW, and this is NOT aimed at them. This is a post aimed at the other guys. That aggro-monkey warlock or shaman, the guy that wants you to chain-pull EVERYTHING even though the Healer only has a 3900GS, and who cannot WAIT to get to the next MoBs.

There’s a certain element of trust that everyone places in everyone in this game. Be it in a 5-man Dungeon, or a 10-man or 25-man Raid, that trust is that everyone will do their jobs and do their jobs right. You trust your Tank to hold aggro, you trust your Healer to keep you alive, and you trust your DPS not to be f*****g idiots.

Sadly, it’s becoming more and more apparent to me the more that I PuG using the LFG system this is not the case. If you chuckle when you read this, odds are you are NOT an idiot DPS. If you’re thinking “This guy’s an a*****e!” when you read this, odds are you ARE the idiot DPS. Sadly, the LFG system has made the incidence of a******s higher as the common attitude is: “I’m never gonna see these people again, wtf should I be nice?” and for the most part this is true, but if you are chaining Heroics, I can almost guarantee you’ll see them again at some point.

Example: Halls of Stone, someone facepulls, we scramble to recover and DO recover, and then as soon as the fight ends, *poof* the Healer is gone. So we re-queue for a Healer and whaddya know? Guess who’s back in our group again? The same healer that left not 45 seconds before…

Yes, we want Dungeons to be fast, yes we want the badges and the loot, yes, we want this to be over with as soon as possible. No one agrees more with this than me. I don’t run Dungeons because I WANT to, I run Dungeons because I HAVE to. For gems for new gear, for Guildies who are fresh 80s and are looking to gear up, and for folk that need an achievement. Believe me, I have nothing to buy with Triumph Badges anymore, folks on either toon. For real. Running Dungeons now is something I will do to get gear for lowbies, get gems and make a little gold, but there’s NOTHING more frustrating than having a perfectly good run spoiled by some impatient DPS who thinks you pull too slow. The worst part: They won’t tell you that you’re pulling too slow, or ask you to pull faster, they’ll just pull and hope you can pull aggro off them in time.

As much as that idiot DPS may be squawking in Guild chat about a Tank that can’t hold aggro when you light up the MoBs BEFORE he gets there, I can almost guarantee the Tank is telling his Guildies your name, your server, and your playing ability too, usually prefaced by “Oh my God, what the f**k is this idiot doing?”

Example: I had a warlock consistently pull before I got there and bitch about dying. I warned him twice to wait for the Tank after he had already done it twice, but he just went ahead and pulled anyways, so I dropped the group mid-pull. This may sound like an asshole move, but if you do something I’ve warned you about twice and I’m tanking, I’ll just go find another group. “WTF Tank, why u leyt me die?” “Because I told you to wait for me to pull, and you didn’t.” /leave group

Example: I had another group of DPS in Forge of Souls one night who were just running around hitting everything. I realized when we pulled the first two mobs and had to scramble to snag one of them when the Ele shammy just lit him up before I was halfway to him, that it was going to go badly. So, to make my life easier I marked targets for the next pull, and what do you know? The 3 DPS are dead, and it’s me and the Healer dealing with “Skull” and “X” and sure as shootin’ the DPS is going off in Party chat: “Why cn’t u hld aggro, Tank? DKs are shiteh Tanks, wtf dn’t u re-roll a Warr? Fkin n00btastic DK,” etc. etc. etc. “Why didn’t Skull die first?” I asked. “wtf shld we use kill order? This is FoS, not ICC! U suck donkey dck, DK!” “Well,” I said, “have fun finding a Tank!” /leave group

Follow Dreddnought and Charlton’s Easy Dungeon PuG Rules and you won’t be the player we talk about in Guild chat.

Dreddnought and Charlton’s Easy Dungeon PuG Rules:

1. You pull it, you Tank it. If you get all Johnny Itchycrotch and run waaay ahead, I’m not saving your ass. If I’m not in combat and you die way out in the middle of the Instance, you can stay dead until we get to you or run back in.

2. NEVER get in front of the Tank. Sounds simple right? Yeah…you’d be surprised at how many times someone face-pulls because they are trying to egg the Tank into pulling another group.

3. Always be sure to be hitting the same target as the Tank. I cannot stress this enough, melee DPS (and Ranged and Caster too). If you hit MY target, it won’t attack you.

4. Watch your threat. Omen isn’t a multi-target Threat meter, it’s Tank Target specific. I can tell when you’re about to pull my target off me, but not another MoB.

5. Let the Tank seal in aggro. When you have a Tank with a 4800GS and DPS with 5500-6000GS the Tank will NEED that extra few seconds to make sure you don’t pull aggro off him. Yes, MoBs die slower because you don’t start right away, but I’d rather take that few extra seconds instead of having people run back.

6. If you have an issue with the Tank, please TELL THE TANK. Honestly, we can take it. Really…we’ve developed thick skins because everything’s our fault. 😛

That’s it really. Not that long a list, and most of it is really common sense, but when’s the last time you got to see that in-game?

If you have any additions or things you think I missed, please add them in comments!

Ummm…yeah…sorry about that…took a bit of a break.

Hello, loyal readers! Thanks for sticking it out with me these past few months. It’s been a wild and crazy ride with real life interfering everywhere I didn’t want it to be. I THINK things will be getting back to normal soon…but only time will tell, and I live in anything but normal times.

Dreddnought, for those of you that have been following his progress ( I ❤ http://www.wow-heroes.com), finally got a look at Arthas a few weeks back, and that’s about all it’s been is a look. It was a long hard road there, but so worth it to get repeatedly pwned by His Lichness. It’s not that the fight, in and of itself is THAT difficult, but it requires a LOT of situational awareness. If your DPS falls asleep at the switch and stands in Defile too long, you are screwed. If they don’t get to orbs fast enough, you are going to get punted off the platform. I don’t care if you’re a tank with 60K HP, that’s a loooooooong way down, and the sudden stop at the bottom is a doozy. If they don’t get on Val’kyrs fast enough, someone is going for a long fall too.

Basically Arthas is a “How awake are you?” check after taking the 3-4 hours required to clear the bottom of Icecrown Citadel. It’s also designed to be an extended fight that will push you on Heals, DPS and Tanking and force you to focus for at least 10 minutes, if not longer.

Dreddnought and co. were able to push Arthas to Phase 2 on almost every single attempt we made, but the situational awareness dropped the longer we were in there, even with a short turnaround time of 3 minutes between pulls.  Tankspot has the most comprehensive strat out there for this fight and we were following it pretty closely, almost down to the second, if you can believe it, but when DPS gets caught napping, that Defile gets really big REALLY fast. In any event, I hope to have more postings on a more frequent basis for y’all, but what I’d like to know is what y’all want to hear about. Strats? Spec? Instances? A Funny thing that happened on the way to the Tournament of Champions? Post a comment and let me know!

Calling all TANKS!

Posted On January 22, 2010

Filed under Randoms, Strategies

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Nut up or shut up, bitches! WTF you at?

It just seems that there aren’t a lot of Tanks or Healers out there these days on my Server (Mug’thol).

I’m seriously starting to wonder how many Tanks there currently are on my Realm that are ACTIVE players.  I’ll be honest: according to http://www.wow-heroes.com on my Server (Mug’thol) I’m ranked 334 (based SOLELY ON GEAR SCORE).  This may seem a little low for a guy writing a Tank blog, but bear in mind that this list includes DKs of ALL specs, because apparently every DK, no matter if they’re specced Frost, Unholy or Blood, is supposedly a Tank. Take DKs out of the picture and my ranking jumps to 292 which is still low, but better.  But, again, solely based on WoW-Heroes Gear Score, I’m rather low on the Tanking Totem Pole, but I’m active 5-6 nights a week.  This means that my toon gets around, and of course, there are Guilds that prefer my services.

It’s a shame, in some ways, really, because now, instead of just running things I have to pick and choose what days to run what. It becomes an issue of freedom of choice, chore, and turning down REALLY lucrative invites.  There are some Raids I LOVE running, like Onyxia’s Lair, and some I HATE, like Obsidian Sanctum, just as there are groups I LOVE running with and groups I HATE running with.

The upside to a shortage of Tanks and Healers is job security, really. I will always be in demand, with the exception of high end Guilds, like Void, Odyssey, Threat Moves, Infinite Improbability, and a few others.  They, obviously, have their own tanks and thus don’t need my services, but it’s surprising how many Guilds there are out there that don’t have a Tank or Tanks of their own, instead relying on friends in other Guilds and PuGs.  This is a risky proposition at best, especially when you don’t know the Tank in question, or a friend’s availability.  

Seeing as Raids kinda need a Tank to keep MoBs off the DPS and Heals, it’s better to go with the Tank you know.  This is NOT a Prima Donna Tank talking here, it’s just my observations, so grain of salt and all that, but True Fact: Clothies like ‘Locks and Mages don’t last too long with a Boss in their face unless they’re Hellagood kiters.  This all starts with PuGging 5-mans.  Which goes back to a previous post about Instances and what you can learn from them.

In any event, if you DO need a Tank, look me up, tell me what you’re running.  Who knows? I just might be able to help y’all out. 🙂

This is what happens when…

Posted On January 19, 2010

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Hello all! Dreddnought here.

Just wanted to remind everyone of the most important part of any raid: DO YOUR JOBS! Tanks will tank, DPS will burn bosses, and Healers will heal. Simple, really, but amazing how quickly it goes wrong in PuGs because “That’s not my job, I wasn’t told to do that by the Raid Leader…”

Just finished getting my ToC-25 Achievement (I know, I know, nub-tank…shoulda had it ages ago, why you so slow, etc., etc., etc.) last night and I couldn’t be happier. I didn’t get it the standard way though. I had healed ToC-25 from Val’kyr Twins to Anub last month and completed that part of the achieve, but had never done Beasts, Jaraxxus or Faction Champs. I found that there’s no real difference between 10 and 25, to be honest, just more beasties that hit harder. Sadly this time around we didn’t actually full-clear it. We would have full-cleared it in under 40 minutes too if someone (no names, but let’s say it was a Ranged DPS fuck up) had shot down ice like they were SUPPOSED to. As it was, no one did, so I was yelling in Raid for ice (Nicely…I said “I need some ICE, my drink is getting warm” several times, but apparently no one read it, and was tanking Adds on stone, and couldn’t get them to ice when it was FINALLY shot down until after they borrowed.

In ToC, as anywhere else, this is called “Not the Tank’s Fault (NTF)” and rests solely on the shoulders of the ranged DPS. Shit, everyone in Raid had the achievement (I Wow-Heroes-ed while waiting for the Raid to fill…it took a while) and should have known that we needed ice down, but I guess having 6K-7K DPS was more important than success on Anub…I mean, really, they had ALL been there before, they all knew what to do, so why no one did it is beyond me. So 4 Adds burrowed in Phase 1 beacuse there was no ice. Yes, that went well.

That I was blamed for it (as Off-Tank this happens a LOT) is no real surprise. What WAS a surprise was the Raid Leader being quick to point out that the Hunter flashing the DPS charts for that attempt showing his 6.2K DPS would probably have been smarter had he SHOT DOWN SOME FUCKING ICE! This, of course, made the Hunter Rage-quit, which led to the Mages and Warlocks quitting as well (5 DPS leaving in total) which then prompted a mass exodus of the rest of the folk, so after 38 minutes and 1 wipe on Anub because of someone not doing their job, and I’m only saved until 11AM today.

The lesson in all of this: If everyone does their jobs, then it goes down smooth like ice cold Molson Export. If everyone doesn’t do their jobs, it goes down like warm Labatt Blue.

How I Tank…Don’t Be Scared.

Posted On January 11, 2010

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Thank you, Miss Medicina! You have inspired me! And thank you, Angry Healers for linking me there!

I got asked that once…”Where’d you lear to tank?” OK, more than once. Mostly in that “WTF?” kind of tone through the earlier levels (think 16 to about 35) but more in the “Whoa, dude…” kind of way once I started getting to the higher levels. I use my Druid’s mobility to its fullest to get aggro, and while I’m sure it looks wierd as fuck to the DPS and Healers that are running with me, if nothing gets loose, then my job is done. I find I watch health bars almost as frequently when I Tank as when I Heal because usually when I tank, the first clue I’ll have that something is loose is someone’s health dropping radically. I can tell you that what appears like a Chinese Fire Drill-Style of Tanking, at first glance, is actually a very effective way to get and seal in aggro.

Now, let me preface by saying I’m not the greatest Tank you’ll ever come across, and I’m by far not the worst, but someone had it right: We are, more often than not, the unsung heroes. When we do seal in aggro, the DPS can AoE with impunity, knowing that a MoB isn’t going to run at them or shoot them and they can do their thing. What is talked about more often than not in Raids? The DPS, of course. No one counts the interrupts the Tank does with their various abilities, or their ability to lock a target down, it’s all about how fast a Boss gets burned down. In Raid make-up you are, more often than not, concerned with Gear Score and Spec and DPS. Trust me, I’ve led enough and tried to pug enough on my Hunter to realise that “4.2K DPS unbuffed, 46% Crit, 5.4K AP MM Hunter w/ 2777 WH Score” apparently isn’t enough for a lot of Raid Leaders. Nor is, for some reason, “37.9K HP unbuffed, 42% Dodge unbuffed Feral Tank w/ 2778 WH Score” This is NOT meant as me talking myself up as a Tank by any means, but I can say with a high degree of confidence that, if given the time required by my DPS, I can hold aggro pretty well for a Druid Tank.  It’s not all about gear, despite what some would have you think, and it’s not about Attack Power as others would have you think, but about target management and the type of fight. 

I don’t think I’ll get too much argument, at least not from my Tanking fraternity, when I say that Druid Tanks are some of the most maligned in the game.  We are often accused of not being able to hold aggro, of being too squishy, and of lacking the necessary AoE skills (like Consecrate and Death and Decay and even War Stomp) to Tank multiple MoBs.  This is true, to a certain extent, but with proper target management it can be done.

I always ask my DPS for a 3 second head-start and Misdirect and Tricks of the Trade if I’m pugging through the new LFG system. It’s not that I don’t think I can seal in aggro all on my own, it’s that I want no opportunity for anything to get away. The ToT and MD and the 3 second head start is usually enough time to Enrage, Charge and get the attention of the MoBs in question so that your Mages and Warlocks and Hunters and Rogues can all open up with whatever they’ve got and not be at risk of getting smacked. Some of you out there may view that as cheating, and that’s definitely your take on it, but seeing how fast my Hunter can pull off a tank with no Misdirect, even an uber-geared one like our Guild’s Main Tank, you’d be foolish not to use your aggro-dump abilities on the Tank, even in 5-mans. This goes doubly so for 10 and 25 man Raids.

Druids are some of the most mobile Tanks in the game. Death Knights and Paladins are limited by the fact that their Consecrates and Death and Decays are targeted AoE spells. Warriors and Druids both are highly mobile and, when required, can be everywhere they need to be. With the judicious use of Faerie Fire, Growl, Charge, and Mutilate the Druid tank has all sorts of CC that can be used to draw aggro off your DPS and make the Healer’s job easier by only having to heal one target (namely the Tank). Sometimes, damage to other party members is unavoidable (like Hellfires that melee decide to stand in, or random Fear) and as a Tank you are not responsible for the nastiness that Blizzard puts into a game, but if one of the things you are Tanking gets loose, that is on you, Tank, and you should own up. If something I’m tanking gets away, I do. I’ll admit when I fucked up, I’m no primadonna tank. I’m ALSO not the kind of tank to leave an instance because I don’t like it. I will gut it out to the bitter end if I have to.

Some of the instances that helped me learn the most: Oculus, Razorfen Downs, Razorfen Kraul, Nexus, AZN, Violet Hold.

In the mean time, keep pugging, and if you ever run into a Dreddnought from Mug’thol, Greetings! I’ll do what I can to keep ’em off ya. 😉

Next Post: What Instances can do for your tanking.

Tanking Terms 101 – A Brief Glossary

Posted On December 30, 2009

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OK, not to sounds drama-queen-ish or bitchy, but there are some things ALL tanks should know, and in ICC25 last night, apparently there are some of you that have NO CLUE.  Not only do you look like a fool, but you make the rest of us look like fools too.  Huntard? No.  Tanktard just doesn’t sound right.

You may have the gear, the right gems, the right enchants, and apparently the right WoW-Heroes score for the Raid (yet ANOTHER reason why WoW-Heroes is the Bane of my existence.  Your Gear Score is most definitely NOT indicative of your ability to play the game) but we pulled in 8 (yes 8) different tanks with the right gear score who had apparently done the fight before but had NO CLUE during the actual boss fight WTF they were doing.  The HP was there, the Dodge, Parry and Block values were there, the Defence Cap was there, but apparently the Intelligence Quotient was NOT.

Seriously? You ask. And I reply: “Yes.  Raid Leader FAIL.”

Here’s the terms ALL TANKS SHOULD KNOW.  If you do NOT know these terms, please learn them before you try to tank ANYTHING because I do NOT need you racking up a repair bill for me.

STACK: Basic concept from Naxx on up.  Some bosses CLEAVE (see definition) and in order to make sure the Main Tank doesn’t get 1-SHOTTED (see definition) the MAIN TANK (see definition) and OFF TANKs (see definition) need to put their toons one on top of the other, so that they look like a blob of however many TANKs (see definition) there are.  This STACKing ensures that the CLEAVE hits all TANKs equally, sharing the damage, so that instead of the MAIN TANK taking 75 000 dmg in one go, each TANK gets an equal portion of the damage.

CLEAVE: A melee swing by a Boss that damages not only its target, but a certain number of designated allies around said target.  If you are not a TANK and you are standing by the TANK and there is a CLEAVE, you will, most likely, die.  GG, Release Spirit, pay Repair Bill.

1-SHOTTED: A nasty habit Bosses have whereby, in one swing, they can kill a toon, usually the TANK, but also any DPS or HEALS that happen to get in their way.

TANK: This is the toon that takes the beating so no one else does.  There are two types of tanks: MAIN TANKS and OFF TANKS.  MAIN: The main dude getting beat.  Usually, but not necesarily, he’s the guy with the most HP, the most Armor, and the most Dodge and/or Parry and/or Block.  OFF: The dude or dudes that will pick up the slack if the MAIN TANK goes down.  Hopefully it’s not a raid killer if the MAIN TANK gets 1-SHOTTED, because the OFF TANKs should all be JUST as geared as the MAIN TANK.

AGGRO: Who has it and can they keep it is HUGELY important.  If your DPS or HEALERS are pulling AGGRO off the MAIN TANK then there’s a problem beacuse once that boss 1-SHOTs whoever pulled AGGRO, the Boss will continue to wreak havoc in the Raid until one of the TANKs re-establishes AGGRO.  Establishing AGGRO is also VITALLY IMPORTANT.  If your DPS lights up the Boss before your MAIN TANK seals in AGGRO, that DPS will most likely be 1-SHOTTED.  MAIN TANKs need to get in there and lock that shit up as soon as possible.

Those are a few of the terms that all TANKs SHOULD know, but for some reason, some don’t…

My Strategies: The Pit of Saron

Posted On December 18, 2009

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In my previous post I mentioned that I would be covering fight strategies for the new 5-man instances, and this is the second of the three, The Pit of Saron.  Why am I doing this, and what makes you think a Tank can write fight strategies? Easy. I’ve Tanked it, Healed it, Melee and Ranged DPSed it (Bear, Tree, Kitteh and my Hunter, Ponfarr).

The Pit of Saron: First off, this is my FAVORITE of the three new 5-man Instances.  I will run the motherfuckin’ wheels off this thing, baby, then kick the axles and run it some more.  It’s a wide open environment with a LOT of pats, good mob density and enough greens and blues that drop that it can be a profitable run on Regular and Heroic. It’s not going to win any awards for anything, most likely, but it seriously feels like your good old fashioned dungeon should. If you pull right you can one-shot everything, but if your tank fucks up a pull (I’m not ashamed to admit that I’ve done it MANY times) you will get pwnt.  There’s also the chance on Heroic that a Battered Hilt will drop, giving you a Legendary item, so it’s not entirely uncommon to spend a long time in there killing mobs and looking for that Hilt.

The Forge Master Garfrost – Lots of good loot off this guy, let me tell you.  Mostly Mail and Plate drop off this guy, but he does drop an AWESOME Healer dagger (a Heals Tree with a dagger? When it’s called The Surgeon’s Needle and gives 39 Crit, 550 SP and (yes, chuckle if you will) 26 Mp5, fuck yeah!).  As a general rule, he should be tanked facing away from the group, and if not facing away from the group, everyone needs to spread out.

Phase 1: The Stackening.  There are 8 adds around Garfrost, and you can’t take them out individually as they activate the boss. Believe me, we tried.  I don’t do the PTR stuff, so when I went in there for the first time, it really WAS for the first time.  So the boss is activated, and if your DPS has even HALF a brain, they will let the adds get to you and the boss and not DPS until you have them all rounded up.  Once this happens, AoE the adds down and get on the Boss. 

Now for The Stackening: Garfrost has a Permafrost Aura that does 400 dmg every 2 seconds and applies a debuff that ticks for 3 seconds and stacks every 2.  This debuff increases Frost dmg taken by 10% per tick.  This means that every 2 seconds, your dmg will go 400, 440, 484, 532, 586, 644, 709, 780, etc. until you get that debuff off you.  How does one do this, you might ask? Easy, Garfrost throws Saronite Boulders at random players that deals 5500 Frost dmg (+ debuff bonus).  If you get out of LoS behind a boulder, the debuff drops and your Healer will thank you for it. This stacking debuff also means that Garfrosts 2 abilities, Forge Frozen Blade and Forge Frozen Mace (200% dmg per strike) get additional damage too.  This ability (the Forge Frozen weapon thingie) and the debuff mean that someone who DOESN’T get behind a boulder for 3 seconds so the debuff drops will get 1-shotted.  Seen it happen to a bubbled Ret Paladin who had 36 stacks of Permafrost on him.  Seriously.  That’s 560% Weapon damage.  He got hit for 22 400 dmg, and seeing as he was already at half health and NOT a tank, e dropped faster than a $12 hooker on Toonie Tuesday.  I can’t heal you through that.  I can’t tank through that either.

Phase 2: Forge Frozen [Insert Weapon Type Here].  When Garfrost gets down to 66% and 33% health, he casts this ability.  After hucking a Saronite Boulder at some lucky party member, Garfrost will run to one of his 2 Forges and cast this ability.  It’s a 5 second cast, so you have a few seconds to get behind a boulder and wait for the Permafrost debuff to drop.  Once Garfrost has done this, he charges back into the fray and the tank will need to snag him and again, face him away from the group.  Along with his fanshy-shpanshy dmg buff, he also casts Chilling Wave which is an AoE attack to all enemies in front of him that looks like a wave of ice spikes tearing up the ground from underneath that does 2000 dmg + debuff.  Again, Permafrost stacks, so get behind Boulders whenever you can.

Rinse, repeat, collect lewtz.

The Terrible Twosome: Ick & Krick – A pink spiky-haired gnome riding a minion.  Nuff said.

Phase 1: Throw Toxic Waste.  Duh.  Don’t stand in these glowing piles of green poo.  It ticks for a little over 4K.  At the same time that he does this, he casts Pustulent Flesh on someone doing 5-10K dmg immediately plus 6K Nature damage every 10 seconds. The cast is easy to see if you’re not totally watching your cooldowns.  Toxic Waste does 4K dmg per tick and it ticks for 4K every 2 seconds for 10 seconds.  DO NOT STAND IN THE POO! The tank will need to keep Ick and Crick moving as he typically drops it in areas of highest player density.

Phase 2: Explosive Barrage.  Crick stops Ick from moving and starts conjuring a large number of bombs (pink bubbles of ouchie!) that will appear beneath someone if they are standing still for 1 or more seconds, with each bubble taking approximately 3 seconds to pop, and doing 6K dmg to all party members within 6 yards.  Solution: RUN AWAY!

Phase 3: Poison Nova. Like Slad’rhan in Gundrak, this is a MASSIVE AoE attack that has a 15 yard range and will 1-shot you unless you are a tank, and even then, if you’re not a tank that’s topped off, you can get 1-shotted.  It has a 15 yard range and does 39K dmg, much like Loken’s Lightning Nova.  Solution: RUN AWAY!

Phase 4: Pursue.  Ick pursues someone for 10 seconds.  He becomes untauntable and moves at 140% speed.  Solution: RUN AWAY!

Lather, rinse and repeat, collect lewtz.

ScourgeMaster Tyrannus: Once you figure out his tricks, this guy is pure easy mode.  Really.  You just HAVE to pay attention to it.  If your DPS is on the ball, it’s easy sauce to get him down for loots.  It’s all rinse and repeat stuff, and easy to execute as long as it’s not 3AM. 🙂

Phase 1: Tank ‘n Spank.  There should be 0 DPS until the tank picks him up because he WILL 1-shot the first person he sees.  Logically, this is your tank, but it’s AMAZING how many people seem to forget this.  Unless you’re a Hunter and can Misdirect, you shouldn’t be hitting Tyrannus when he does his whole spiel thing until your friendly neighbourhood tank has had a chance to pick him up.  During this phase he will cast a spell called “The Overlord’s Brand” on a random party member.  When this happens, any damage done to Tyrannus is ALSO done to Your Friendly Neighbourhood Tank, and any healing done to your Tank is ALSO done to Tyrannus (if he casts it on your Healer).  I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve died due to some DPSers failure to notice he was Branded…*shudder* While all of this is going on, his Drake, Rimefang, will bomb party members, leaving patches of snow on the ground.  Remember where they are! They WILL be important when:…

Phase 2: Run, Forrest! RUN! Tyrannus will cast Forceful Smash, causing 47K to 52K physical damage to his target (hopefully the Tank) right before he Powers Up, as it were.  When he is Empowered by Dark Might he does 200% damage for 10 seconds, meaning he can 1-shot a tank at low health if your healer doesn’t get him up to 100% ASAP. In this phase, which is mercifully short, Tyrannus needs to be kited over the patches of snow that Rimefang dropped in Phase 1.  As long as your Tank doesn’t run onto the snow himself, he’ll be fine.  The Forecful Smash is Physical damage only, so for those of you that were looking at it and going: Geez, we have to have a 50+K HP Tank? The answer is: No, just a Tank that has a good Armor rating to reduce the Physical Damage taken to a manageable level.

Anyhoo, once Tyrannus does his Forceful Smash to the Tank, he will grow in size and after a 2 second pause will charge after the Tank.  The good thing is, there’s no Stun effect with Forceful Smash, so once you hit the ground again after the pushback, you can high-tail it for the nearest patch of ice.  I recommend Tanking Tyrannus with your back to a patch of snow so that when he does Forceful Smash, it’ll knock you over the snow pile, effectively doing your kiting for you.  By the time he gets across the snow patch, his Overcharge will have worn off and you can tank as normal.

Rinse, repeat, collect lewtz.

Next Post: The Halls of Reflection (aka The Bitch-Kitty).

Next Week: Off-Tanking – What to do when you find a GOOD one…

How do you tank?

Posted On December 15, 2009

Filed under Strategies

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With the new Patch 3.3 dropping, 3 brand spankin’ new 5-mans, and the new Ice Crown Citadel 10 and 25 man raids there’s a LOT of new content and a LOT of different ways to tank it.  There are 2 completely different fights in The Forge of Souls, 3 completely different fights in The Pit of Saron and 2 different fights in The Halls of Reflection. Don’t even get me started on ICC yet…trust me…I’ll get into that later on.  First, however, we are going to look at Tanking 5-mans and what I love or don’t about them.

There are several different ways to tank.  Some I’m good at, others not so much, some I LOVE, others not so much, and some I HATE, others not so much.  I’m sure that those of you who have tanked for a LOT longer than I have know the “proper” names for different styles of Tanking, but here’s the ones that I know:

Chain-Pulling – This is the fun one.  You have a decently geared Tank and a decently geared Healer and you can pretty much pull non-stop to the first Boss.  It’s a high movement, high speed, full-out burn to the Boss and usually a quick turnaround once you get there.  I prefer to Tank like this when I can, and I’ll usually ask the Healer if it’s OK before I do it.  For some odd reason, the DPS like this kind of pulling.  Guess the idea of getting a Dungeon down and moving on to the next boss and collecting loot is the key, right?

Tank ‘n Spanks – I’m sure you’ve all heard the term “Tank ‘n Spank” used before…that’s the one type of fight I HATE mainly because it’s friggin’ booooooooring.  I mean, seriously, Tank ‘n Spank = Feral Charge (Dire Bear), Faerie Fire (Feral), Growl, Swipe (DireBear), Auto-Attack, Maul (Dire Bear), Swipe (Dire Bear).  Place face on keyboard.  Roll face on keyboard. That’s it, that’s all.  Single Boss fight, no adds to pick up, no poo to get out of = booooooooring.  Ranged DPS and Melee DPS LOVE those kinds of fights, because they can go crazy and try to pull aggro off me.  Unless you’re using Dark Command, Taunt or Death Grip while DPSing (and no one should be, really) you won’t pull aggro off me…seriously.  Unless I’m asleep at the switch, you ain’t gonna.

Kiting – I LOVE these kinds of fights! Seriously. Mainly because they’re challenging to me and sometimes fun.  If I can keep the boss alive long enough, and he/she’s the kind to drop poo, I can try to spell words and stuff.  Immature, I know, but still, with a good healer and smart DPS, you can do all sorts of fun things. I’ve actually been trying to practice with a Fel Reaver in Outlands just to see what kind of trouble I can get into by kiting it to the Alliance base there, but so far no luck…I just need to convince a healer to come with me…and this is one of the ways that kiting CAN be fun: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-982380251124231965# 

 Who woulda thought of kiting a boss into an Alliance capital city? Man I wish things like that were still possible…

Hybrid/High-Movement/4 or More Pull – It’s the combination of Tank ‘n Spank and Kiting that I like the most.  It’s the one that keeps me the most mentally involved and also the one that’s hardest on my Healers.  Have I mentioned how much I love my Healers? ‘Cause I do…Manick, Azareel, Devia, Yaxeka, Nonaime, Sasaku, Traleanna, Cycoikari, I love you ALL! You are all the bomb in my books because you keep me alive through some hard-ass shit…Anyhoo, Hybrid/High-Movement pulls involve multiple targets of different classes, namely Melee and Caster/Ranged MoBs.  That shit is FUN! I get to charge my Secondary (usually marked “X”), aggro the Melee MoBs in between and drag them over to my Primary (usually marked “Skull”).  Those pulls keep me active running back and forth between “Skull” and “X” to make sure my DPS doesn’t pull aggro off me.  Some people say Swipe is fine for that, but it doesn’t generate as much threat as Maul does (and I glyphed so that Maul hits more than one target) or as much damage as Mangle does (and I glyphed so that Mangle, when Berserking is active, hits 3 targets, increasing threat and DPS) so while it’s great for getting MoBs attention, it is possible if you’re spamming Swipe, to lose one to your DPS, if they’re not targeting the same MoB you are.

Next Post: The New 5-Man Strats (like y’all haven’t seen them or done them yet..lol). Forge of Souls, Pit of Saron, Halls of Reflection.

Next Week: Off-Tanking – What to do when you find a GOOD one…