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Crenchet
04-06-2009, 10:33 AM
First of all thank you for the amazing job you all do here, this is a great site and I appreciate all of the information here.

I come from a small guild and have slowly been gearing in and running heroics. My wife is my healer and she has commented on how I am not taking a steady stream of damage but huge spikes of damage every so often. Being new to heroics I am not sure if this is normal, or if I should be stacking something else in order to help prevent the spikes and make my healers life easier.

Any information you can give or advise would be appreciated. Here is my armory link.

The World of Warcraft Armory (http://www.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Silver+Hand&n=Crenchet)

Thanks

Squirrelnut
04-06-2009, 10:47 AM
There are a few factors to incoming damage which you can control as the tank. Some are pretty obvious while others not so much.

1) Gear - this is pretty obvious but considering you are over the 540 mark this should remain fairly constant and will slowly improve as you get better drops. Not much to say on this one.

2) Skill usage - When you pull you should have a pre-defined rotation that you use for single targets and modified with groups. On 5 man heroic group pulls I would generally subscribe to the rotation of:
Charge > Shield slam > TC > Shockwave > Demoralizing Shout > TC followed with single target tab target prioritization of SS > Revenge > Concussion Blow > Shockwave > Devastate with heroic strike spammed when ever you are 50+ rage.
Following this type of rotation keeps the mobs stunned on the initial pull, debuffed with TC & Demoralizing shout to reduce the incoming damage and grouped up while you maximizing your threat.

3) Pull layout and recognition - this is probably the most important and separates crappy tanks from good ones. I can basically decide how much damage I am going to take by by pulling differently to account for the gear level of my healer. Learn all the heroics, raids, etc so that you know which mobs are the most dangerous, where the pats go, possible knockback abilities that could pull other mobs, etc. This way you can efficiently pull single groups of mobs and ensure they are down without agroing a 2nd set and without pats wandering up on your back. Practice makes perfect on this, just keep in mind it is one of the most important things a tank does. Also it never hurts to mark a target for your DPS to focus on so that you can ensure you have plenty of threat on it and gather up the rest so that you aren't running around trying to pickup mobs that run after your dps.

EDIT: you are borderline crit capped with your defense, I would grab a Seal of the Pantheon - Item - World of Warcraft (http://www.wowhead.com/?item=36993) from normal halls of lighting to make your life easier as you get more gear and decide what to put on

Sysmon
04-06-2009, 12:22 PM
All good advice.

I find that a good heroic to practice how much you can handle with your current healer/group is Utgarde Keep. The first hallway you go down has a couple of pats wandering between two main groups of 2-3 mobs. You can 1) do a cc pull of a 2-man group getting just 1 mob on you at a time: 2) pull a full group; 3) pull full group + pat; 4) charge in when pat is between groups and get both groups + other pats.

Other instances with groups pulls low on casters are in the beginning of Utgarde Pinnacle.

A problem can also be if you have melee dps in your group that stays on your side of the mobs. If a mob parries, you can get the riposte right in your face, leading to irregular damage spikes.

S

Crenchet
04-06-2009, 12:34 PM
Thank you for the advice.

I have been running H-UP for a few weeks trying for the sword. I feel I have the pulls down fairly well, I quit using CC after constant whines from multiple PUG dps members. Which is my own fault, that and I seem to be able to take a beating from 4 mobs fairly well, but that is probably why I get the jumps in damage.

I had no idea about the parry thing and melee dps I will keep an eye on that. I just wanted to make sure that I wasnít doing something horribly wrong with my gear/spec. Thanks for taking the time to lend me a hand.

Glomgore
04-06-2009, 12:54 PM
Make sure your using shield block on those AoE packs, with any luck, they'll be dead shortly after it wears off. My most efficient rotation so far has been Charge > SS skull, TC+group em up, Shockwave to stun, while they are stunned, demo, and pop shieldblock and another big SS to skulls face.

Disarm Melee, Silence casters, reflect if more than one, heroic throw a caster if it's far away, if you have the right points, he'll come right to you.

Don't be afraid to taunt/throw ranged mobs, should keep em on you. Keep mocking blow on CD also, it can buy you those 3-5 seconds you need to get to your 4th target.

korenwolf
04-07-2009, 01:36 AM
I find that a good heroic to practice how much you can handle with your current healer/group is Utgarde Keep. The first hallway you go down has a couple of pats wandering between two main groups of 2-3 mobs. You can 1) do a cc pull of a 2-man group getting just 1 mob on you at a time: 2) pull a full group; 3) pull full group + pat; 4) charge in when pat is between groups and get both groups + other pats.

100% agreed, that first main pack of trash in UK is our guild's nemesis, it's where we wipe. Either through lack of care (reminding us that trash is dangerous) or because we manage to just tickle the other pack.

My tankadin's main problem was the multi-hit spike when pulling packs of elite trash, individually they don't do anything like enough to worry me, however a pack of five can drop a combined wallop which stresses the healer (I've since managed to stack health up to 28k unbuffed which gives enough slack).

Last night was the first run through with my newly minted 80 mage and our off-spec tank (not quite def capped), careful use of sheep and planned pulls (after the near wipe on the first main pack) made the rest of the instance go without any significant problems (or any further deaths :))

headknocker
04-07-2009, 03:57 AM
I find that the biggest spike damage has 1 of 3 sources:
- Caster that is unloading on you. Particularly in 2 caster pulls. This is bypassing your armor, so will just hurt you more. Skull casters and spell reflect if you can.
- Stuns. The mobs in the beginning of H UK are a good example of this. Are you getting stunned, and if you are do you call out to your healer to let her know that you've got a damage spike incoming.
- Positioning. This is a combination of the parry point above and in 3.0.8 they slightly altered mob positioning so groups of 3 or more mobs are more likely to spread out around you more. This means you may have a mob a bit to the side of you that is really attacking you from behind. I tend to keep moving on trash pulls to negate this.

Having said all that, hard hitting mobs is what makes heroics heroic. Its normal to get a few 'oh my god what was that' hits when you start running them until your gear outclasses the instance.

On the gear side, your trinkets could use an upgrade, get all of Seal of the Pantheon, Laventhor's talisman, Valor Medal of the First War, Essence of Gossamer. In the short term, I'd most like to see you with Valor Medal and Essence of Gossamer. Your hit is a bit lower than I'd like to see it, so you may want to replace your weapon enchant with a +hit option as you get a defence sword rather than the bone crusher. I would switch to the +40 stam on bracers after you get the defense weapon. I understand why people do the titansteel treads because the stam is sexy, but as your stam increases from other sources, you probably want to swap those for some better defense boots (greaves of ancient evil, terrace defence boots). Switching to +22 def on chest and +40 on bracers would be a big win for you in both slots. For warrior's horn tipped gauntlets seem to be the gloves to get because of the extra expertise, but fireproven are a good upgrade while you wait for them to drop (see your already working on KT rep).

Crenchet
04-07-2009, 06:18 AM
Thank you all for the comments. Iíll put extra effort into upgrading my trinkets and give the sword a break, I have angered the WOW gods as in 20 or so runs I havenít seen it drop.

My rotation is exactly what has been mentioned here, my positioning may need work, sometimes when things are on the side of me I assume they are in front of me and from what I gather here that may not be the case so that needs work as well as the continuous grind for gear, and my comfort level with the pulls in specific instances.

If any of you drop by this thread again would you mind taking a peak at my spec and seeing if the movement of any points would help me? Like I said my guild is small I have no plans on raiding anything, but none the less I would still like to give myself the best chance to be the best tank I can possibly be.

Thanks

Sysmon
04-08-2009, 07:17 AM
I probably drive the melee dps up the walls by changing position constantly. If a caster or range dps mob moves away from the group, I tend to grab what group I am tanking, move to the stray mob and remold the group for another shockwave/TC combo before returning to my normal tanking routine. Also, if I can't easily close the gap between two groups with casters in both, I may slowly kite one group over to the other.

When I at the same time keep reminding dps to stay on the back and flanks of mobs, there are probably some swearing at me going around.

Often, I also do the heroic throw AFTER the initial charge, if the distance to the group is short. Or, if if Shield Bash if off cool down, I save HT cooldown for a caster that may have wandered off.

As for your talent build: You can move the points from puncture to Improved Revenge. Also, there should be little need for the improved rage regeneration from Anger Management and Focused Rage. At least I don't have rage issues without those talents, but I have 5 points in Shield Specialization which many seem to like less. It does, however, generate additional rage from blocking.

A talent that looks more and more sexy to me for the purpose of running heroics is Improved Spell Reflection. As stated in the tooltip, it reduced your chance to get hit by spells and when you use the ability, it works on your nearest party members as well. That should reduce damage spikes on you as well as on melee dps, relieving your healer of some spike panic attacks if you use the Spell Reflection ability (I do).

:D S

korenwolf
04-08-2009, 08:31 AM
I probably drive the melee dps up the walls by changing position constantly. If a caster or range dps mob moves away from the group, I tend to grab what group I am tanking, move to the stray mob and remold the group for another shockwave/TC combo before returning to my normal tanking routine. Also, if I can't easily close the gap between two groups with casters in both, I may slowly kite one group over to the other.

Where I've got a split mage pack + melee trash I tend to pull the melee onto a single caster and get the DPS to blow down the other one as quickly as they can. Seems to work for us (Ok, our normal party is either 4x Paladin + 1x Warrior, or 3x Paladin 1x DK 1x Warrior, so not exactly normal)