View Full Version : Tier 1 Raid Tanking Strategy

08-08-2008, 02:28 AM
I'll keep this brief, but I'm going to cover the details of Tier 1 raid tanking (Kylliki's, Vistrix, Yakhmar). I'll start with general details.

What Gear Do I Need?
All T1 raid encounters can be completed with non-crafted, non-tier gear. You do not need a single gem to successfully clear content.

You will want approximately 26-30% general invulnerabilities and approximately 320-324 Defense. You will want Heroic Defense where available (bear in mind a city provides a Heroic Defense bonus that scales as the city grows). Even though Defense appears to be capped at 317/318, this is strictly a UI issue.

This said, getting to work on a crafted set is a good idea. While it's not necessary -- our first clears were without any crafted gear -- it sure is helpful and it's not too expensive.

Specifically, pick up Unyielding gems of any level and socket them into your Armor pieces, starting with Rings/Neck/Cloak. These provide Crushing reduction, which is the primary damage type of all non-human mobs (i.e. Vistrix, Yakhmar, and much of BRC). The reason you want to grab Rings/Neck first is because they're the least likely to be replaced by other items (you will not find raid items to replace them).

1h/Shield or Polearm?
Both work. Polearm has a slight disadvantage in damage reduction without Strike and Guard and shield stat bonuses, but again, damage reduction is not the primary issue with tanking. Polearm will generally output stronger Hate.

When we had a Polearm tank, what we found most effective was to have that tank only pick up aggro after they had put up Guard. Even a downranked Guard takes a moment to apply, and a boss like Vistrix lays down substantial damage in the first hit.

Multiple Tanks
The hard and fast rule of T1 AOC raiding is that all players are capable of handling adds. Tanks are useful, but not necessary on trash. They are, however, necessary on bosses.

For this reason, assuming a remotely balanced raid, you should have 2-3 tanks available for bosses at all times. Additional tanks should handle adds.

Trash - Kylliki's Crypt
Trash in here is fairly basic, but here's a few tips:

When Spellguards begin their Dark Bargain AOE spell, you can stay in safely if you use Cunning Deflection. Cunning Deflection lasts through all spell damage and only wears off when melee attacks land on you.
Honorguards are a lost cause. You can tank them with a lot of effort, but their high tendency to evade and drop aggro makes them frustrating. What I tend to do is get initial aggro while a Ranger picks up secondary, and we kite them around the pillars in the center of each room.

Boss - Champion of the Honorguard
Simple tanking. Focus on your Hate generation here. If you get low on health, have a secondary tank use Goad. Do not attack him any time the Curse of Gwahlur is active. At around 10% life, he will begin doing significantly more damage to the raid, so another tank should be ready just in case you're in a precarious spot.

Never kite this boss: he has an axe-throwing ability which will demolish you if you attempt to run after the encounter has begun.

Boss - Kylliki
Two tanks from the start. The majority of this encounter revolves around cold damage, so cold reduction on gear is helpful. Goad any time the other tank is low on life. If you have a third tank and damage is particularly rough, have them Goad as well.

Kylliki is a movement fight. You should have Charge ready almost any time she runs towards her minions (she does this on a ~1 minute cooldown). At the very least, run towards her and stay in range. This prevents her from using a high-damage attack that will kill you and subsequently wipe the raid.

You may use tanks to kite the wolves. They deal significant damage, though, so get assistance with crowd control if you do this.

You do not need to tank Spellguard Minions.

Trash - Vistrix Lair
Again, a few quick tips:

Champions hit hard and have some reactive damage. Use two tanks when you're undergeared. Technically you can always kill these with one tank, but it'll save you some problems. You can resist the fear, so throw on your 10% Fear Resistance buff. Also, when it's just a Champion left, having as much of the raid in range of the fear as possible helps hold aggro on you.
Shadowbearers and Mindrazers can both be tanked, but neither require tanks. We tend to have Shadowbearers die before Champions. Mindrazers are considered minions and can be instantly killed.
Frozen Cadavers have a lot of health and a decent amount of damage, but are vulnerable to all crowd control. Pick one up and off-tank it if it comes in the middle of a pack.

Boss - Vistrix
This is the most complex tanking boss and there are many strategies that work fine. The one we worked on was built around having limited gear and works well for that.

Vistrix Profanity is the core of the encounter for tanks. It is a stacking Defense debuff that causes you to take extra damage that you cannot overcome, even with crafted gear. It is only overcome as you pick up raid gear with Heroic Defense. You can limit the damage you're taking by using a full crafted set, but I'll explain it from the position of people who don't have this yet.

Vistrix applies Profanity in increments. You will get -4 Defense, -8 Defense, -16 Defense, and -32 Defense. At -32 Defense you will take substantial damage that your healers cannot overcome. Depending on which phase of the fight you're at, this can coincide with Tartarous Vapors stun, and can guarantee a death if you still have aggro.

To avoid the debuff, have the second tank Goad off you as soon as you are at -32 Defense. If the second tank's Goad fails, have the third tank Goad. However, assuming the second tank's Goad works, that tank will carry it until he or she has -32 Defense, and the third tank will Goad off them. The debuff lasts 40 seconds and the key to this strategy is letting it wear off before you take Vistrix' damage again.

Dark Templars are invaluable for this as well, thanks to their Dread Shadow. The Dread Shadow buys you 10-15 seconds of time where Vistrix is not attacking the tanks. This gives a much greater chance that the debuff will wear off before it is re-applied.

The Dread shadow serves another function. In our raids, we don't have enough Banes to cover a Vistrix kill, so we drop Dread Shadows immediately before a Tartarous Vapors. This pet has a high chance of getting aggro and, if this occurs, our Dark Templar lets us know we don't need to use the bane.

Adds can be tanked if you have extra tanks, but they do not need to be. DPS'ers are fully capable of CC'ing them, killing the minions, and bringing them down without tanks.

Boss - Yakhmar
This is the most damage intensive fight but it's nearly as simple for tanks as Champion. Use one or two tanks depending on your gear and alternate aggro between them. Face Yakhmar at least 90 degrees away from the raid so conal damage and stuns don't hit everyone.

Adds come every 45 seconds. Adds can be feared, stunned, CC'd, and just about anything else. They do hit harder than Vistrix adds by a good measure, so tanking them is helpful.

08-08-2008, 03:29 PM
Would you post innate hate values of some polearm attacks like you did with the 1h attack in the general tanking reference?

08-08-2008, 03:42 PM
Would you post innate hate values of some polearm attacks like you did with the 1h attack in the general tanking reference?
Not for a bit, it requires me resetting my Taunt skill and dropping my feats. :(