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After DPSing and Healing, now – Tanking SoO

July 11, 2014

Dear Reader,

That’s right, not only is my flex raid leader pleasant, industrious, and personable, he’s also extremely forgiving.  He’d have to be to let me tank all the way through flex SoO this past Wednesday.

Look, it’s not that I don’t like dpsing or healing.  It’s really more that I’m a shifty person and have a hard time staying true to only one character or one role in WoW.  I’ve done it all, now, even at heroic levels in various different expansions.  So I’d spent the last few weeks getting rid of my last blues on my tank and spit polishing his gems and enchants so that I might give tanking another whirl.

Tanking was my first real love in WoW; my paladin was my first max-level character, and prot was my first end-game spec.  My first raid – Kara – was completed as a tank.  I always thought of myself as a tank, even when I was healing on Stubborn and dpsing on Iambic, though admittedly less and less so the further I got from my paladin.

One reason for the distance was that I hated the changes they made to tanking in – well, really – in every expansion.  Threat has become less and less of a mechanic and active mitigation more and more of one.  If I want to prevent damage and/or heal it, I can just be a disc priest.  I don’t like that tanks have been given more and more defensive cooldowns and less and less interesting choices to make.  You hit button A during boss mechanic B.  You hit button X during boss mechanic Z.  Not only is it boring, if you make a mistake, it costs the entire raid an attempt as your death likely means a quick wipe.  Disinterest + huge responsibility is not a good combination.

So I stopped tanking for a long time, but now that my tanking buddy’s back and I’ve been observing him getting to tank, I got the itch again, too, and my guild was kind enough to let me scratch it last Wednesday.

I honestly don’t know if I liked it.  I was so unaware of the tanking mechanics for each boss that it again qualified as a “new” raid for me, and I did make mistakes – a lot of them.  Luckily, the raid is so vastly overgeared that they were usually (always?) able to recover from my death, but it was still quite irritating, if only on a personal level.  I’m quite sure gearing was an issue; my gear score was only 518 and my health 650k unbuffed or so compared to the usual 750-900k unbuffed tanks we occasionally get.

On top of that – and if you’ve been a long time reader you know I never complain about gear drops – I got zero gear from the first boss up until Siegecrafter, and that includes an additional 6 coins on top of it, so I was zero for 17 at one point.  The mace on Siegecrafter dropped, which was a huge upgrade, thankfully (as my weapon was my weakest piece), but still, I went 1 for 20 for the entire night.  That doesn’t exactly encourage me that next week would be any easier.

So I don’t know.  I may have lost interest in tanking as a whole.  I don’t like the different emphases from when I first started tanking.  Then again, maybe it was just a sticky run because it was my first as a tank.  I’ll have to wait and see what next week looks like before I’m sure one way or the other about who I want to take to 100 first in WoD.

Sincerely,

Stubborn (and tanking – maybe)

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Helistar permalink
    July 12, 2014 3:29 am

    For me the changes to tanking are absolutely positive. Maybe it’s from my background of a druid tank, but it’s not a chance that it was called “DPSing from the front”…. threat is just like dps, it’s just that you have some multiplier between your DPS and your TPS, but overall it felt the same. I like the current no-threat situation (at least in single-target), where I have to do some resource management to stay alive, because now playing a tank and playing a DPS feels a lot more different…..

  2. Cain permalink
    July 14, 2014 2:15 pm

    The thing I didn’t like is that they basically made every fight a taunt at X stacks fight. I know part of that is because people got sick of there just being the boss tank and the add tank every fight, but still I didn’t care for it that much. I tanked in Vanilla, BC, and most of Wrath, and since then I’ve done mostly dps with only occasional tanking. One of the things I always liked about tanking was the needing to move around and have good awareness of the whole surroundings. It seems they eliminated a lot of that and it became stand in one spot and taunt when the opposing tanks debuffs get to a certain point.

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