View Full Version : Beginner warrior tank needs some help

02-05-2009, 06:42 PM

ive just switched over to tanking at 80 2 weeks ago from fury and ive done a lot of reading and gearing up but i still need some advice.

firstly here is my armory page The World of Warcraft Armory (http://www.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Jubei%27Thos&n=Monsolas)

im pretty sure im geared up enough to start doing heroics but any critique of my talent build etc would be great.

Mainly i just need some advice on a few situations that give me trouble

My basic strategy is this: mark skull/X/moon or whatever to the group. Then i charge in (using a macro ive made that combines charge, bloodrage, berserker rage and shield block) then i hit the main target with a shield slam and revenge/heroic strike. After that i spam TC/SW to get up AOE threat, then just go back to SS/REV/DEV/TC/SW, all when they are off cooldown with priority given to SS/TC/SW.

This works fine with say hunters where they are mainly single target hitters and we just move from one to the other. The problems start for me when it will be a mage/druid/pally that do AOE damage and TC/SW becomes not enough to keep aggro.

So my question is: Is all i am 'expected' to do is TC/SW and if someone takes threat its their fault, or should i be tabbing through each enemy periodically to cast SS/Dev/Rev to get additional threat on top of TC/SW?

The only other problem i have is a related one.
If say our hunter takes aggro its easy enough to taunt him as he runs to the hunter and bring him back. But i have problems when its say a pally who is melee and i will see the pally start to take damage but not be able to tell who is actually doing it to taunt them. Is the only way to tab through each mob and use 'target of target' to see which one is attacking the pally?

Those are the only things im having problems with atm, but any general advice is appreciated, i also only have Omen atm so any other handy mod advice would be good too

Sorry about the long post, cheers in advance

Muffin Man
02-06-2009, 01:38 AM
I took a quick glance at your armory. It's clear you've done your due diligence with enchants/ gems/ craftables / boe gear. Kudos for that.

One suggestion would be to swap the parry gem. Exp / Stamina is the prefered red socket gem around here. But you've also got a lot of health, so straight up expertise works too.

You've got the basics of a rotation down. There's a really good thread I like that explains how the priority system should work:

Tabbing around is the best way to do AoE aggro. TC is on too long of a cooldown and if you get tunnel vision on your primary target you won't know how the rest are doing threat-wise.

Now, here's a really quick run through of the Blizzard's threatmeter. I'm assuming you haven't modified your UI. Also, I believe this feature is only available in instances or at least only when partied. So you won't always notice this.

Now, you've probably noticed that it'll flash the following: high threat, attacking you and losing threat at different times. Blizz gives us much more information than that.

For starters you can mouseover a portrait and in the popup window under the mob's name it'll display your threat as a % relative to the guy with aggro. Since you want to be holding aggro, you always want that % to be 100. You won't actually be looking at this number much because of the other features.

Next, and very important, when you target a mob his portrait will be outlined depending on your threat:
regular portait - you have low threat
orange glow - you have high threat
red glow - he's attacking you

The orange glow is the most important. It might mean that you have aggro, but someone's creeping up on you. Or it might mean that someone else has aggro and you are creeping up on their threat. The status alerts that flash over the mobs will tell you which one is the case here.

Now the last, most subtle, and possibly most important detail of blizzard's threat mechanic =p.
The portraits of everyone in your party will also have this outlining.
no outline - nothing cars about this party member, he's doing good
orange outline - he's got high threat on someone, watch him
red outline - someone's attacking this guy!

Usually you can click on the person with the red portait and target his target. Most likely that's the guy that's attacking him.

02-06-2009, 06:50 AM
I've been working on my tank's gear on the side while i worked on my warlock, but now the time has come to devote my time again to my warrior.

I just recently went into Violet hold, and promptly found out i have no idea how to tank four mobs at a time, and keep them all off the three mages(probably not the best mix, but i didn't form the group, not that it's much of an excuse).

so my question is this, What is the best strategy/rotation for holding threat on multiple mobs in a heavy aoe situation?

Tank - Requias
Realm - Khaz modan

02-06-2009, 07:24 AM
for aoe threat, I generally charge in, TC to round them up, back up a step or two to make sure all are in front of me and SW. After that, usually throw a shield slam at skull (if there is one, with 3 mages it'd be fairly pointless), and then start tabbing through and hitting at least one of the following priority on each target: Shield Slam > revenge > devestate with heroic strike for rage dump or when I have glyph of revenge in effect (I'm also trying to get better about remembering concussive blow - still so used to it being generally useless from BC). TC and SW always kept on cooldown.

If I'm having issues taking a higher amount of damage I mix in a demo shout to help where possible, and war stomp since I'm a tauren.

02-10-2009, 09:31 AM
For multi-mob tanking, in addition to tabbing through targets always remember to switch your heroic strikes for cleave. The cleave glyph also helps in this situation.

I typically just switch my heroic strike hotkey for cleave on trash mobs, and move it back for boss mobs. Cleave should always be your rage dump in trash scenarios IMO.

Hit Me
02-10-2009, 11:53 AM
Check out the addon Aloft, it color codes the health panels of the mobs so you can see which mob you're about to lose threat on, then you can just click on that panel and hit him with a SS or Rev and then go back to your skull.

Somebody mentioned that addon yesterday and I immediately went home and loaded it up. So far, so good.

02-10-2009, 12:27 PM
Thanks for that reminder about Aloft. I definitely need to check that out.

EDIT: To the OP, a helpful tip is to have the Health Bars toggled over your enemies (Shift-V?). When your screen is crowded with baddies, it helps to pick out which one has moved to attack someone else.

Also helps when you want to switch targets to a specific mob, such as the next in the kill order, and tabbing through might take too long. Just mouse click on the health bar of your desired target.

02-12-2009, 05:08 PM
Some things that may help out:
Use Recount(addon) to help identify folks with high damage outputs, providing the best person to smack with Vigilance.

Start working on the Sons of Hodir quest chain and rep. They have the shoulder enchantment granting Dodge and Defense rating(15/10 at Honored, 20/15 at Exhalted).

Once you no longer need the 20 Def Rating on the shield, consider Titanium Plating (+40 BV).

Keep an eye out for Bracers - Major Stamina enchantment (you probably already are). It needs an Abyss Crystal and 3 Dream Shards (If I remember correctly), so it can get a little expensive, but it's 40 Stamina.

If you're not already using them, Glyph of Blocking(+10%BV for 10s after SS) and Glyph of Revenge (a rage free HS after hitting with Rev) are very useful, the Bloodrage minor glyph as well.

Make some simple macros to reduce key strokes, such as the 2 liner:
/cast Revenge
/cast Heroic Strike
Very useful if you have Glyph of Revenge, and even if you don't. Be aware, if you don't have the rage to use HS, it won't get queued up even Revenge hits, so you'll need to hit the key twice. Do the same for SS/HS and/or Dev/HS and you won't need a hotkey for HS anymore. In constant rage situations, it is a consistent DPS boost, as it turns your white damage to yellow reducing dodge/parry/miss chance.

It might be useful to set up an extra hotbar or two. I'll use 1 bar with abilities and macros for multiple mobs, a second for single mob/boss fights, and sometimes a third for solo/low rage situations. Sometimes it's just switching in cleave, sometimes it changes my Devastate to a macro that does it and targets the next available in melee range.

Talent wise, I've found Imp. Bloodrage to be only slightly useful when I have Imp. Charge (mostly in Violet Hold). If you start using macros to spam HS and find yourself low on rage, consider moving them to Improved HS to save 2 rage a swing instead of an extra 10 rage each minute.

Oh, and don't forget to try to Disarm physical mobs and bosses, not all are immune (Jedoga Shadowseeker in Ahn'kahet). It also seems to keep Skadi from starting Whirlwinds, providing a little predicability on when they come.

03-19-2009, 07:06 AM
Well you're definitely better geared than I am, but so far I have noticed a similar problem. Generally a high Crit on a non focused mob will pull it off me, so I started putting Vigilance on the top DPS and that helped a lot. Also if I saw a mob pull off a go for someone else I just taunt>heroic throw and they usually come right back.

As for DPS with AoE this is a major problem, I had a real hard time in a group with a mage and a DK, blizzard + Death and Decay = I can't hold threat. In general I think a lot of DPS are lazy thanks to Paladins and Death Knights and their easy 1 button AoE threat. The only thing I can think of is to really let them know to 1) give you a minimum of 3-4 seconds to build a little lead room, and 2) try not to Aoe burst right out of the gate, and focus down one at a time based on kill order. That last option may not go over well but dead DPS do 0 dps.

03-24-2009, 01:43 PM
Paladins and whirlwind warriors are the only guys i have much problem with, the fools use aoe damage as a part of their normal dps which hunters/mages/warlocks only use it in certain situations. using visible nameplats "V" is the best idea you can have, very handy for VH for example for seeing when adds spawn from the portals to pick them up.

It's the dps guys job to attack the same target as you, there's usually no need for them to aoe a group, but if they do and grab aggro and your aoe is on CD.. don't forget you have the challenging shout as a back up.

using a threat meter is generally better than relying on blizz's method when you are tanking one at a time.. you can see if you've built up enough threat by tiem mob is at 20% then move to next and start building threat while dps finish off the first one.

03-31-2009, 05:20 PM
The World of Warcraft Armory (http://www.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Garrosh&n=Malfea)

I'm fairly ignorant about tanking, but I know that I enjoy it, and I'm looking forward to learning more. Also, I have only been playing for about five months, and I have only been tanking for two of those.

However, so far I have gone through the regular instance dungeons in WOTLK, and found them pretty fun. I thought that I was ready to run some heroics...but I keep getting my butt whipped.

I realize that I am new, and I have a lot to learn about tank tactics, but I was wondering what I need to do about my gear. Any suggestions to point me in the right direction would be wonderful. Thank you.

04-02-2009, 09:30 AM
The World of Warcraft Armory (http://www.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Garrosh&n=Malfea)

I'm fairly ignorant about tanking, but I know that I enjoy it, and I'm looking forward to learning more. Also, I have only been playing for about five months, and I have only been tanking for two of those.

However, so far I have gone through the regular instance dungeons in WOTLK, and found them pretty fun. I thought that I was ready to run some heroics...but I keep getting my butt whipped.

I realize that I am new, and I have a lot to learn about tank tactics, but I was wondering what I need to do about my gear. Any suggestions to point me in the right direction would be wonderful. Thank you.

Sounds like you want an armory review, try the Halp! forum.
HALP! Armory & Talent Suggestion Requests - TankSpot (http://www.tankspot.com/forums/f175/)

In General your gear is OK to start out Heroics with. You could use some gem and enchant tweaks as you're a little low on HP as well as some spec tweaks to maximize threat generation.

04-02-2009, 04:39 PM
thank you. That link was very helpful :)

04-14-2009, 12:11 PM
Ok, take my thoughts with a grain of salt, since I've only been playing the game for 3 months.

1st. Make sure you spec deep wounds. When I made that change it made a noticeable difference not only on my AOE threat output, but also my overall DPS.

2nd. Have a different mindset for multiple mob encounters then you do for boss/single mob encounters. A big difference is spamming cleave rather then spamming heroic strike, but there are other differences as well that you will have a feel for. For example, if I'm on a single mob, I don't blow thunderclap whenever it's available because threat is no longer a problem, and I want to save that for something going wrong, like an unexpected add, etc.

C. You already mark targets, this is good, but keep a watch and see if people are actually following the order. DPS is (generally) lazy and apathetic, but if you remind them of your target order, and they start sticking to it, you will find life to be much easier.

4th. In multiple target situations, don't dump all your threat on your main target. If I have three main targets, for example, I will typically heroic throw the second, charge and thunderclap, pull back and shockwave, shield slam the third, then focus my energy on the first. This way I've piled up decent threat on the off targets, and that threat can hold up to some AOE. I keep that threat up with thunderclaps, shockwaves, and cleaves. I typically will quickly tab through the targets watching omen, to see if there are any problems creaping up on me, throw a shield slam on them and you are fine.

V. Pay close attention to positioning. If your ranged party members are within melee range of the stuff you are figting, it is easier for them to pull aggro off you. Also, do what you can to clump the mobs together so that you are getting the most benefit out of your cleaves. This is usually easily accomplished with your first shockwave, which gives you a chance to position yourself so that all the clustered mobs are in front of you and won't move around much, etc.

6. If you have a DK whose threat is insane, odds are he has frost presence on, or is using threat high moves that as a DPS and not a tank, he shouldn't be. Feel free to point this out to them. You will hopefully find that the caliber of DKs at 80 is much better then what you came across 55-79, and they are much more reasonable. More often then not, they didn't even realize they still had that on, and were happy to switch. Same thing to a lesser extent with paladins, if their threat is through the rough, they are most likely using high threat abilities.

VII. Don't forget heroic throw!! I was prot and tanking since the start, so i got into my comfortable groove of a rotation without heroic throw, and wasn't used to using it when it was given to me at level 80. When something splits away, heroic throw that sucker! Occasionally heroic throw a tertiary target just to stack some more threat on it to stand up to AOE threat that is being dealt.

H. Glyph and gear appropriately. If you are running heroics mainly, to get ready for raids, I think multiple target tanking is a bigger issue for you, since you can hold aggro decently on a single target already, for that reason, i recommend the cleave glyph.

9. The standard rotation is great, but it isn't meant for multiple mob situations necessarily. If you are constantly devastating in order to proc sword and board, then you are too single target focused. I devastate less often in a multiple mob situation then i do in a single mob situation.

10. When it comes to vigilance, putting it on the highest DPS is a great start, but also pay attention to omen and see what is always just a step below you on the threat meter. It may be that even though they aren't the highest DPS, they are dealing more threat, and you want that threat to yourself and off them.

XI. It's really important that you get *some* threat on *every* mob in the encounter, otherwise your healer, or aoe dps is going to get boned. To this end, after you charge and thunderclap and shockwave, keep your eyes peeled for weird situations where maybe you missed a mob. This happens when they are spread out, etc. You need to get threat on that missed mob or things will get out of hand, heroic throw, run over and shield slam or heroic strike, do something. One note: you also need to maintain aggro on the main pack of mobs, these are the interesting hairy situations that I think make tanking fun! If a pack is really spread, i make a real effort to thunderclap in the middle of them all, not just on the one I charge, and I keep my shield slam and heroic throw on reserve for right after the intial charge, to handle missed mobs. If none were missed, then great, I heroic throw and shield slam the mobs that i've already picked up.

12. Yeah, i know, i'm getting carried away at this point, but look into addons that help you get the most out of your situation. I use addons to know exactly when S&B procs, to make it very obvious when i can shockwave and thunderclap, to make it obvious when I'm in high rage so that i can spam cleave or heroic strike, etc. I recently ran through H VH with all those addons turned off and was amazed at how much more difficult it was to keep everything in check and running smoothly. I use MSBT, Classtimer, Power Auras, and Bartender all in different ways to help me with these things. There are tons of options out there and some may work better for you then others.

04-15-2009, 12:45 PM
I have a saying that I use everytime I go into a 5 man heroic. It goes a little somthing like this:

"I like baseball and that means I follow the three strikes rule. If your dps and you pull off me once, fine, if you pull off me twice I will say something to you, three times? Your out! You will die cause I will let you tank it yourself. If you can not wait five seconds for me to get a lot of threat on all the mobs then you need to learn patience as this will go much faster if you let me get threat than having to wait for you to run back to your body. The only ones who do not have to worry about this are the healer and if my wife is playing on her mage. Nuff said."

Many dps will listen and wait, and if they do they almost always say.. "WoW you are a good tank!" Those that don't die and die a lot. As the healer and I whisper to each other and decide together on wether or not to heal said dps player.

As far as the 4 mob spawns in HVH that is just tough for a warrior, hands down. They always come and I always miss time my bloodrage ergo I am 0/100 on rage and can't do anything to them right off.

Also the really hard ones are the arcane stream dragons. Those you have to go for first and try like hell to get them down.

And the ones that pop at top of the ledge to the far left.. just move back to the stairs at the entry way and wait till they are all clustered again to charge, TC, Shockwave...

I use Heroic Throw during a fight to help either silence a caster mob again, or to just keep threat on a mob that I haven't touched in awhile. Helps too to use it on bosses whenever its up.. nice threat booster.