View Full Version : Single Target Unholy Tanking?

05-28-2009, 07:50 AM
I am an Unholy Death Knight, and I am the MT for our 10man raiding guild. I do well, more or less, and can usually hold threat, but as we venture further into Ulduar, I'm finding my single target threat just isn't keeping up. Partly it may be because I haven't gotten a new weapon, they never drop. And part may be that our dps is far better geared than me, but I'm beginning to feel inadequate for single target threat.

Yes I do know that Unholy isn't the way to go for single target threat, but it happens to be the spec I'm best with. I have tried Blood and a few forays into Frost, but it just isn't for me. I have tried to come up with, what I hope is, a decent single target Unholy build. I haven't tested it out yet, but I wanted a few opinions and suggestions before I go any further.

The spec would basically use Oblit as the nuke, rather than SS. I'm rather hesitant about this, but other people have suggested it to me. Below are the links to the new spec, and my armory for my current one.

(http://http://www.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Tortheldrin&n=Lamashtu)Attempted Spec (http://www.wowhead.com/?talent#j0xzZMxx0hZcgh0xcdgIo0cohx:adA0Vm)
(http://http://www.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Tortheldrin&n=Lamashtu)My Armory (http://www.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Tortheldrin&n=Lamashtu)

05-28-2009, 08:29 AM
I think sticking to Unholy, instead of trying to work Obliterate, would be a better option. Frankly, your current build is solid, though I'ld max Imp Icy Touch and get AMZ (dropping black ice). Icy Touch to mitigate damage more, and I've found AMZ to be useful through Ulduar, even more so on 25s.

Do you macro RS into abilities, and allow your RP to be banked to allow RS procs? (IE, do you keep at least 20 RP up as much as possible). The only time I have threat issues are from other tanks, usually at the start of a pull where they use a 'high threat' attack like Shield Slam while we're competing on a trash pull. Even then, if RS procs, I snag aggro back.

The other question is uptime on UB & diseases, since those are vital for threat. If any one of those drop off, you're losing a significant amount of threat generation, especially with SS attacks. Also, Ebon Plaguebringer buffs essentially all your damage, and in turn your threat.

An alternative is to get the DnD Glyph (20% increased damage) to buff that ability's high threat component with more damage.

05-28-2009, 08:34 AM
The spec would basically use Oblit as the nuke, rather than SS. I'm rather hesitant about this, but other people have suggested it to me. Below are the links to the new spec, and my armory for my current one.

Who in the world would ever suggest that?

Talent Calculator - World of Warcraft (http://www.wowhead.com/?talent#j0EbZhxZbghIx0zgI0ocoux:Mrd)

Try that spec out and the rotation for it is IT>PS>BS>BS>SS>SS//SS>SS>SS// and that is for single target.

You really really really want to get rid of all your dodge and parry gems, replace them with 24stam in every slot besides one 8exp/12stam. Trust me, when you do General Vezax you're going to be glad you did (10man vezax is a joke but not when your a 10man only guild).

You really do need a new weapon though, I don't know what loot system you use but you really do need to get Ironsoul, Stormedge, or something to replace that 186dps weapon.

I'd suggest changing your dual spec to this: Talent Calculator - World of Warcraft (http://www.wowhead.com/?talent#j0EGqc0Icb0fssxhxZ0gh:Gdi)

The rotation for that is IT>PS>DS>HS>HS//DS>DS>HS>HS// for single target.

The pure amount of threat in Dark Conviction, Bloody Vengeance, and 2Hand Specialization are too good to not get. You don't want Spell Deflection, Mark of Blood, or Blood worms at all because they are too situational for Ulduar.

(Use the glyphs in the links)

Frankly, your current build is solid
You are crazy.

05-28-2009, 08:43 AM
Thanks for the help!

As for the weapon I'm using, it has nothing to do with Loot Systems, and everything to do with bad luck. I've been running Nax10/25 for months and months, and Ulduar now, and I've yet to see Death's Bite, Inevitable Defeat, Ironsoul or Stormedge drop... On any of my toons.

05-28-2009, 08:44 AM
You'd probably lose single target threat by switching to obliterate, simply because you're not taking the talents that buff obliterate's damage (Rime and Guile of the Gorefiend), and you'd be wasting all the talents in Unholy that buff SS.

Your current spec and glyphs seem to be really focused in AoE, you are really not taking advantage of the single target elements in the Unholy tree. Here's some advice:

Get the talents that help your single target threat: Ravenous Dead, Necrosis and Desecration are all Unholy talents that would increase your single target threat.
Dump the talents that don't work for a tank: Night of the Dead and Master of Ghouls do absolutely nothing for a tank.
Glyph for single target threat: The Glyph of SS and the Glyph of Dark Death are good choices if you want to increase your single target threat.

05-28-2009, 08:45 AM
Thanks for the help! For the most part, I have no trouble at all on aoe/trash pulls, it's just the single target bosses that I have problems with, and I am beginning to think it's just the gear different between myself and the one major dps'er who pulls threat. As a tank, when in doubt blame the dps, I suppose. Thanks again.
Besides it being your gear it is your spec/rotation that is holding you back.

05-28-2009, 09:03 AM
I agree with Griefknight, if you want to do the best possible single target threat with the Unholy tree, you have to spec and glyph apropriately. A spec like this The World of Warcraft Armory (http://www.wowarmory.com/talent-calc.xml?cid=6&tal=0055000000000000000000000000205020000000000000 0000000000205230030103215233100003133150) is much stronger than your current spec for single target threat, of course it means you'd be sacrificing some AoE, but even doing so it'd still be very strong for AoE.

05-28-2009, 09:08 AM
Thanks Molohk, I'll switch those talents around. I was planning on keeping my current Unholy spec for trash, or certain boss fights, I just wanted something a bit stronger for some fights like Hodir, where the raid gets substantial dps buffs. Typically, the only dps'er I have trouble with threat is with a single warlock, I can even hold it just fine over our other tanks (either prot war or feral druid). But I'm hoping that I can optimize a second spec just right so he doesn't have to hold back to much.

05-28-2009, 09:22 AM
I've not found Necrosis or BcB to be worthwhile since 3.1, largely from the 'next auto attack', but confirmation from GC that those talents didn't benefit from +% damage effects like Black Ice (aka, "working as intended"). As such, I relegate those to pure dps, especially where unholy is more magic focused then melee.

You are crazy.

Definitely, but I hold aggro and kill stuff. Sanity isn't necessary for success.

05-28-2009, 09:28 AM
I didn't know necrosis did not benefit from black ice, that sucks. Any idea if it doesn't benefit from ebon plague? (I haven't really done much playing around with Unholy yet)

05-28-2009, 01:21 PM
I didn't know necrosis did not benefit from black ice, that sucks. Any idea if it doesn't benefit from ebon plague? (I haven't really done much playing around with Unholy yet)

I'm going to need to dig up the GC post. I believe it was another of the 'nerf DW DPS' intents, even though there is a disconnect between Black Ice & Necrosis/BCB. I have no info regrading EPB, but I suspect it would affect Necrosis/BCB (by upgrading damage dealt to a target, rather than Black Ice's increase the damage generation). Given the refocus on 2H, however, I doubt this change is a significant 'nerf', though it's an acknowledged stealth change.

Edit: Finding blue post was far more irritating than I expected, but here's a link (http://www.worldofraids.com/wow-blue-tracker/us-forums/16019953785-bug-necrosis-not-even-single-dipping.html) to the necrosis 'working as intended' post I mentioned. However, it does state that EPB won't increase necrosis damage.

05-29-2009, 09:29 AM
BCB is not a worthy tanking talent, due to the amount of your white hits being turned into Rune Strikes. Necrosis, however, DOES proc off of a Rune Strike.

Shainra, here is an Unholy tank spec, plus glyphs, that I use to MT/OT Uldur 10/25 and Naxx 10/25 and have no threat issues.

The World of Warcraft Armory (http://www.wowarmory.com/character-talents.xml?r=Malfurion&cn=Nuadda&gn=Dread+Knights)

Here is your rotations:

Single Target: IT>PS>BS>BS>UB>SS>SS>SS

Multiple: DnD>IT>PS>Pest(You can Blood Tap and Blood Boil if you think you need some more threat quickly;
SS>BB Then restart.

Until you get some of the higher stat Ulduar gear, I'd recommend changing your sigil to the +defense one, getting 10 to stats or 275 hp to chest, 40 stam to bracer and regemming to exp/stam.