View Full Version : Unholy Tank spec 3.0.8

01-23-2009, 06:53 PM
Before 3.0.8 I was working with this Unholy DK Tanking spec:
Talent Calculator - World of Warcraft (http://www.wowhead.com/?talent=j0xZhxZfgoI00ogeVocsut)

Now with 3.0.8 everything I read seems to indicate "Bladed Armor (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=49393)" is absolutely vital to DK tanking.

So I'm trying to build the ideal AoE Unholy two-hander DK tanking spec. So far I've come up with this:
Talent Calculator - World of Warcraft (http://www.wowhead.com/?talent=j0EZhxZfgoI00ogeVocsuz)

But I'm looking for critiques, and suggestions for improvements along with why.

My thinking has been that:
"Wandering Plague (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=49655)" - critical to getting AoE threat out there.
"Ebon Plaguebringer (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=51161)" - need that boost to crit chance to boost chance that "Wandering Plague" will proc.
"Rage of Rivendare (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=50121)" - Nice, but I had to cut somewhere, and this seemed non-vital, but I am unsure.
"Scourge Strike (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=55271)" and "Unholy Blight (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=51379)" - only half sure I needed to keep these.
The 1 pt in "Virulence (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=48962)" - filler to reach tier 5, could that point be better spent?
The 3 pts in "Ravenous Dead (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=49572)" - filler to reach tier 5, could those points be better spent?
"Anti-Magic Zone (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=51052)" and "Magic Suppression (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=49614)" - Do I need these?
"Reaping (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=56835)" - almost dropped it, but I'm finding that death rune too useful.
"Desecration (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=55670)" - Only a movement debuff, seems non-vital. But coupled with the 5% dmg boost - seems handy. But am I wrong?

01-23-2009, 08:15 PM
"Wandering Plague (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=49655)" - critical to getting AoE threat out there.

It depends if you're main tank or off tank. As main tank, often times your concentration needs to be on single target threat. A lot of the off tanks responsibility lies with aoe threat, though certainly not always. In my opinion, it's probably worth picking up as an off tank but not so much as a main tank.

"Ebon Plaguebringer (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=51161)" - need that boost to crit chance to boost chance that "Wandering Plague" will proc.

This talent is pretty vital if you don't have another unholy DK raiding with you with it. If you do, then it's not so vital. As a tank, you shouldn't worry about your crit chance much, in my opinion.

"Rage of Rivendare (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=50121)" - Nice, but I had to cut somewhere, and this seemed non-vital, but I am unsure.

This is vital for any tank or dps out there, 5 expertise skill is a lot of gems you won't have to use for rating.

"Scourge Strike (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=55271)" and "Unholy Blight (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=51379)" - only half sure I needed to keep these.

Unholy Blight isn't vital except for aoe threat. Scourge strike is absolutely vital. It's unholy DK's main source of single target threat.

The 1 pt in "Virulence (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=48962)" - filler to reach tier 5, could that point be better spent?

Seeing as an unholy DK, most of your damage will be magic damage. Virulence is pretty necessary.

The 3 pts in "Ravenous Dead (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=49572)" - filler to reach tier 5, could those points be better spent?

3% strength is pretty awesome and gets better with the better equipment you have. Plus, your ghoul is an extra 300 dps. Keeping him up is a nice thing to do.

"Anti-Magic Zone (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=51052)" and "Magic Suppression (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=49614)" - Do I need these?

These have some pretty limited uses. Very skippable in my opinion.

"Reaping (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=56835)" - almost dropped it, but I'm finding that death rune too useful.

These are really only useful to use scourge strike over and over. Very useful if you have SS, but not so useful if you don't.

"Desecration (http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=55670)" - Only a movement debuff, seems non-vital. But coupled with the 5% dmg boost - seems handy. But am I wrong?

5% is 5%, if you're doing 2k dps, another 5% means you're doing 2100. Pretty nice for 5 points, and it scales well. But, there are a lot of fights where you'll be moving around a lot and you'll rarely have that 5%. It's optional in my opinion.

In short, my opinion of DK tanking is that you have 3 talents for avoidance/mitigation. The others are all for threat. You have a few in each of the three trees that help with survivability (bone shield, shadow of death are the two in the unholy tree). Here's my spec:

The World of Warcraft Armory (http://www.wowarmory.com/character-talents.xml?r=Skullcrusher&n=Fonziefabio)

I'm considering moving the three points from Morbidity into BCB for even more single target dps, but I haven't decided to do it quite yet. While I am main tank, so my primary responsibility is single target threat, I do have the responsibility of being able to hold some threat on the trash and without an almost continuos D&D, I'm not sure I'd be able to do it on some of the longer lasting aoe trash pulls.

01-24-2009, 08:43 PM
The above plus a matching thread on the WoW forums has me planning some new spec options.

Hoping for yet more feedback, or contrasting opinions.

So now I'm playing around with these:

Talent Calculator - World of Warcraft (http://www.wowhead.com/?talent=j0EZhxZfghcb0ogcV0csut)
Talent Calculator - World of Warcraft (http://www.wowhead.com/?talent=j0EZhxZfghcb0oge00csut)

Theories being to drive up both single and AoE threat and also maintain mitigation.
The difference in the two above is "Desecration" or "Magic Suppression". The suppression looks very handy for mitigation against casters. On the other hand, when tanking, most of the pull will be grouped around me, and Desecration will really start to add up.

"Outbreak" seems to be a very notable boost to damage output, and thereby threat. I usually toss a Blood Boil out right after Pestilence to build up AoE threat. Those points could go into Necrosis instead...
But, not sure on "Necrosis" - most of my threat comes through my spells, and with a slow two hander just how much impact would this have? So does Necrosis really help? I've been thinking it wouldn't have much impact since it works through the auto attack, and DK weapons are a lot slower than what I'm used to on my warriors and paladins.

PvP is not a concern for me - I'm looking for a tank spec, I don't PvP at all.

01-24-2009, 11:28 PM
In my opinion, desecration is the winner. Both talents have limited uses, but desecration's uses are far less limited than anti-magic shell.

01-25-2009, 10:10 AM
Initially I used Desecration in my build but I no longer value it as much.

It is good to have when tanking trash or static encoutners - but I really had no problems whatsoever keeping threat on me there anyways. It is completely useless for nonstatic encounters though and I wasnt able to find any hard proof for the initial aggro when laying desecration down.

So I skipped it and put the 5 points into better use (for me)

This would be my unholy spec if I ever go back to unholy:

http://talent.mmo-champion.com/?deathknight=0055020000000000000000000003050000000 000000000000000000235200305100115203100203113151&glyph=000000000000

It is not completely optimized for tanking because I like my perma ghoul and gargoyle too much to just abandon them (when pvping with my tank spec, being alone when doing dailies, joining a heroic pug as dps etc pp)

Also unholy aura is considered valuable raid support in my raid and we never brought another unholy dk. I would skip it if we did.

01-25-2009, 10:20 AM
Necrosis is actually a pretty good filler talent. Since it adds a flat percentage to your auto attacks and ignores armor it does more damage than you would think.

01-25-2009, 10:36 AM
It also procs off runestrikes from what I know and possibly from blood caked blade, which as a stand alone talent I dont like too much but maybe together it would be worth it.

01-25-2009, 08:20 PM
Glyph time...

So between:
Glyph of Bone Shield - (2 extra charges)
Glyph of Death and Decay - (+20% damage/threat to our main AoE threat generator)
Glyph of Rune Strike - (+10% crit chance to our main single target threat generator)
Glyph of Scourge Strike (25% to proc Blood Plague -and- Frost Fever)

- Which 3? The first 2 seem absolutely mandatory. But I'm not sure as between the last two.

As for Minor Glyphs...
Glyph of Pestilence
Glyph of Horn of Winter

And something random...?

01-26-2009, 12:40 AM
Glyph of Death and Decay is hardly mandatory. It's nice, but not good enough to justify being in one of the three spots in my opinion. Maybe if you're an off tank, but certainly not as a main tank. One glyph you left out is glyph of Dark Command. It adds 8% to keep your taunt from being resisted. That can mean the difference between a wipe and a successful boss kill. I've never ran without it, so I can't tell you how much it actually affects things. Though I've definately considered replacing it with Glyph of Rune Strike. It might not mean much since you have a second taunt if needed.

The three that I currently use are Dark Command, Bone Shield (a necessity for an unholy tank, in my opinion), and Scourge Strike (awesome for single target threat). Though, after typing all that, I think I might take out Dark Command and replace it with Rune Strike.

As for minor glyphs, the only one that's really necessary to me is Glyph of Pestilence. The others are personal preference.

01-26-2009, 12:50 AM
An off-tank with Glyph of DnD would risk quickly over taking the primary tank on threat with all of the targets but the main focus of the primary tank - given how much of a threat boost its likely to give.

01-26-2009, 07:38 AM
If you're interested, I've been long and successfully Unholy tanking, and this is my full rig: Osyras - Terenas (http://talent.mmo-champion.com/?deathknight=0055001000000000000000000003050000000 000000000000000000235200330100103250051203103151&glyph=041617040501)

It has some distinctly personal flavors, such as Unholy Aura (not necessary, but certainly helpful in Naxx, Sarth, and EoE), and Rune Tap (which I use with the glyph to save lives, no joke).

Some general things I've found:
1.) Don't you dare not take Rage of Rivendare. 10% damage on its own is an amazing damage buff, and at the same time, never let Blood Plague fall off. 5 expertise is both a great threat buff, and a nice touch of survival.

2.) Corpse Explosion is no longer a throwaway for folks who just like seeing stuff blow up. Mine has been hitting for 1500 damage non-crit on everything in range, that's WAY too good not to have and use.

3.) I'd take Necrosis before BcB, and I'd take them both for compounding hurts if and only if you're focusing on single target damage and you have a 3rd disease. Otherwise I take them only as filler, and for an aoe-centric build I think you can do better elsewhere.

4.) Reaping can be very good if you are up to adapting your rotation, but I don't like to take it unless I can fill it (which in my spec you can pretty much see as me trading that for Unholy Aura and Rune Tap, personal choice...).

5.) Wandering Plague is wonderful in theory, and it does buff your aoe threat, to be sure, but with such a low crit chance in tank gear, even in raid buffs, it's one I put near the bottom of my priority list, and there are certainly better.

And a side note, if Glyph of DnD would allow you to pull threat off the main tank for the main target, then I'd say that main tank should not be MT at all. Normally I leave the single target tanking to my warrior co-tank, since he burns ridiculous single target threat, and he leaves the rest of the pull to me since I can hold an entire pull off of the worst aoe the dps can put out (usually with our bladestorming arms warrior leading that pack at 3k+ TPS on everything in range).

01-26-2009, 11:34 AM
The way it works in my guild is that off tanks focus on the aoe and the main tanks focus on the single targets (bosses). I thought that was fairly wide spread, guess it's not as much as I thought.

I saw some math once comparing wandering plague to bladed armor. While I certainly can't reproduce the math, what it resulted in was that for 3 mobs wandering plague is better than bladed armor. Of course, the more mobs you have, the better wandering plague gets. The downside is that wandering plague does nothing for you against single targets.

The whole thing comes down to whether you want to focus on aoe tanking or single target tanking. DK's are lucky in that there's a hundred different possible specs that work. It's all a matter of personal preference and what you're going for.

01-26-2009, 11:46 AM
http://talent.mmo-champion.com/?deathknight=0055000000000000000000000003050000000 000000000000000000235230030100105253001003133151&glyph=040911050402

That's my unholy build. It skips out on desecration because well... I just don't like it.

This build has all the AoE talents.

01-26-2009, 11:53 AM
That's the truth of it, personal choice makes all the difference.