View Full Version : Tanking Death Knight MT Frost build advice/modification?

06-07-2010, 07:49 PM
I am currently working on gearing up to tank higher end raids but have concernes about my spec and rotation. I am currently using this as my tank spec:


I have heard that people tie Rune Strike to their other major strikes, but i have no idea how to do that and if that would help my threat holding or not. The resaon i am concerned about my rotation is because i really dont have one, apart from making sure diseases stay up using pestilence i pretty much just spam Obl, FS and RS when its up.

Any advice/modifications/*facepalms* or Addon advice would be welcome, just trying to streamline my tanking abilities and having a spec/rotation down would greatly help that. And if you have a good place for raid research for fights such as those in ICC, it would be much appreciated.

*Also debating on wether or not to try to find good DW tank weaps or if i should just stay 2h frost since talents are being butchered in cata... And as a returning player who rushed for a 80 DK for family purposes i have no idea for this next question: What website/addon should i be using to find my gearscore so i can advertise my being LFG?

06-07-2010, 09:10 PM
/cast *Every strike, in seperate macros*
/cast Rune Strike
/script UIErrorsFrame:Clear(); UIErrorsFrame:Show()

^ That's the macro I use on my failDK.

I'm not going to comment on your spec, as a lot of my DK theorycrafting knowledge is outdated and irrelevant. I will say, however, that Icy Touch generates an insane amount of threat nowdays (I see many DK's who use fast weapons and just spam IT and RS, and their aggro is good).

If you need to research fights, use TankSpot! Head up to the Project Marmot forums and read the strats/watch the videos.

As far as gearscore goes, first: ugh. Gearscore is a moderately useful indicator of what raids a person is capable of, but the obsession with it leads people to make horrible gearing choices, especially where trinkets are concerned. If for some reason you WANT to know what your Gearscore is, I wouldn't recommend installing the addon (it would probably give you cancer) but rather check out Wow-Heroes.com (for one gearscore) or Wtfismygearscore.com (for the in-game version of it).

06-07-2010, 09:49 PM
Thank you. As far as Gearscore goes i know that people are over-obsessed withit just from watching trade chat but i figure if they want to know i may as well tell them.
The macro looks like it might work, i'll have to play with it and see what happens.

06-07-2010, 10:20 PM
Okay so you want to Frost Tank with 2H? Just as an FYI that is not optimal, Frost does best for Tanking as DW as opposed to doing it 2H.

First off we will touch your Major Glyphs.
You want to use the following 3:
Icy Touch or Howling Blast
Frost Strike or Rune Strike
Obliterate (ALL Frost DKs should have this one regardless of Tank or DPS)

Spec needs a bit of a tweak
Is what I suggest as a base 2H Frost Tank spec, I recommend Improved Icy Talons for a 2H build, however with this build you might have problems with keeping Diseases up and people might complain in heroics about slow pulls.

However I would suggest using the following Spec and convert those 2 Nighttimes to use as Tank weapons.
you will have 3 points to use, can put more into Scent of Blood for better Runic Power generation, into Epidemic for longer diseases, or into Morbidity for faster pulls in Heroics.

More about the Glyph choices.
The reason I suggest Icy Touch over Howling Blast is it makes Frost Fever stronger
Frost Strike over Rune Strike is you can ALWAYS Frost Strike if you have the Runic Power, while Rune Strike won't proc on certain bosses.

Truthfully if you are going to 2H tank, I would suggest going Blood.

Edit: Weapons for DW Tanking.
2 Tank weapons are nice from a survival point, but alot of people are against it saying use 2 Slow DPS weapons, I personally like to use 2 Tank weapons when I DW tank and never really had threat issues.
But for weapons for DW tanking, you do want Nerubian Carapace on both weapons.
Farm H Pit of Saron for http://www.wowhead.com/item=50268 if you want to use 2 Tank weapons, the http://www.wowhead.com/item=49303 and http://www.wowhead.com/item=49495 from Onyxia's Lair 10 and 25 both make good tank weapons for a DK, since they are midrange for speed.

06-07-2010, 10:30 PM

I have runestrike glyphed and macroed. the macro i use is:
/cast Obliterate
/cast runestrike

replace OB with which ever spell you want runestrike macroed to. I have RS only macroed to OB, BS, BB and PS.

As far as spec. I prefer Icy talons fully talented over 2H weapon specialization for the faster swings for me and my raid which means more dps for my melee.
SoB i've found no difference between 2 and 3 points and I have plenty of RP for RS and mind freezes which means chill of the grave is out.
So there are your 6 points to fill out icy talons.

Gear wise, i'm not sure what you have going on there. I just hope you're not wearing dps gear for threat.

Rotation really isn't a rotation. for me its more of a set of priorities. diseases always up, blood runes always on cd using BB and pest for trash and BS for single target to keep up blade barrier. then single target is OB when possible and for AOE HB when off CD and or Rime has procced. I also LOVE power auras to keep track of KM and Rime procs.

Some ppl might not agree with me on Icy talons fully talented, but i have yet to see any negative effects from it and the smart melee dps love it and i like it to be able to proc more drain lifes from my Bryntroll. Granted it might not be a lot more, but its something.

06-08-2010, 12:09 AM
Thanks for the input guys:) i may have to spend the gold and try ou tthe SoB vs. ITalons. As far as dw tanking i may have to try it. Least switching between DW dps vs 2h Tank and vice versa i wont have to go farm new weaps unless i go for actual tank weaps... probably not a bad plan to grab a pair of those either way incase i change my mind at some point.

Also i read a rumor, dont remember which forum it was on but something about parryrigging or something? Some mobs are set to inc attk speed when they parry and it stacks or some bs like that. i dont know if its true but considering i have an expertise of like 7 in tank spec, 11 in dps im going to be parried alot. I know not to base a lot of my theory off wild things like that but something like that can mean a huge difference.

06-08-2010, 01:46 AM
Parryhaste is when a mob parries one of your attacks and his next attack is sped up. This really only applies on trash and a handful of non-dangerous raid bosses. I'm not entirely sure how this would affect a DW tank in 5-mans and the like, but I know for a fact that parryhaste is disabled for almost all of the bosses in ICC (and many of the hard-hitting bosses outside of it as well).

Can someone shed some light on whether parryhaste is a factor for a beginning DW tank? My gut tells me that it's not but then again my gut is not a reliable source of information.

06-08-2010, 01:58 AM
mobs in dungeons will parry haste which will lead to slightly more spiky incoming damage and hence mass QQ from lazytard 6200gs healers who dont want to work for their daily bowl of frostys.

in ICC only sindragosa and LDW have parry haste enabled.

in toc not sure who but i know gormorok and icehowl have parry haste on.

for raids blood does tend to shine as the superioir tank spec due to the added stamina, wotn as passive opness cd as well as superioir st threat and self healing.
but im biased as i love blood spec.

until you start doiung heroic lk etc frost is fine but its betetr to dw than to 2h even if u might get parried occasionally.

06-08-2010, 06:03 AM
Okay so you want to Frost Tank with 2H? Just as an FYI that is not optimal, Frost does best for Tanking as DW as opposed to doing it 2H.

2h is fine for Frost; I see no reason why people think DW is "optimal." I've done both and while DW is fun and looks cool, I saw no appreciable gain from it.

My Frost spec is pretty Vanillia. Personally, I think 6 points in the Icy Talons tree is a waste, you're a tank, you don't need to buff the raid, let a Shammy do it. Some don't like Death Chill, I like the crit on demand; also some don't like Morbitiy and put the points into Scent of Blood; I like the reduced cooldown and Chill of Grave is fine for Runic power for me.

I tank trash, 5 mans and the LK fight in Frost (I take the adds); raid bosses in Blood.


06-08-2010, 11:31 AM
Well thanks guys, time to go spend 200 gold trying different specs in random H's to see what i like. Mainly looking for a ST MT spec but i really really like frost with HB and FS. And i think i may follow Selene (http://www.tankspot.com/member.php?54408-Selene)'s advice on glyphs, then i just need to up my HP pool by about 20k... probably going to drop BSmithing (not lossing much, blacksmithing is only at like 182) and go JC for the 51 stam gems, though im not looking forward to the amount of farming and gold involved, not exactly rolling in gold.

Going to go farm x2 of the Rimefang's claw, would love those blades out of Ony10/25 but no one goes there anymore unless it's an alt run for their guild, or at least i havent seen anyone lfg/lfm it for a couple of weeks.

06-08-2010, 11:54 AM
the "best" combination of professions is Blacksmithing and Jewelcrafting, it offers the most options.
though from a pure tank standpoint, Mining is great.

06-08-2010, 12:02 PM
I wrote a thing or two on the subject, addressing most if not all of the questions asked. You can find the Frost section here:
And the macro/UI mod section here:

2h is fine for Frost; I see no reason why people think DW is "optimal." I've done both and while DW is fun and looks cool, I saw no appreciable gain from it.

If all else is held equal, dual wielding will do more threat/damage if you use one or two slow weapons. That is about it. You can say you get more tank stats if you use tank weapons, though that loses the threat benefit and the gained defensive values are not insignificant, but you won't notice the difference.

06-08-2010, 12:10 PM
If all else is held equal, dual wielding will do more threat/damage if you use one or two slow weapons. That is about it. You can say you get more tank stats if you use tank weapons, though that loses the threat benefit and the gained defensive values are not insignificant, but you won't notice the difference.

That was my experience. I used slow/fast - the Marrowgar mace and the Frost Giant's Clever. Nuberian Carapace on the mace and Fallen Crusader on the Axe. Don't get me wrong I finally grew to like the DW spec, the only reason I went away from it was to fill Shadow's Edge with souls (tanking ICC trash in Frost); but in the end I really didn't see any great benefit to me from the DW.

By far the number one thing I've learned that makes the biggest difference in tanking, for me at least, was being converted to worshiping at the temple of stamina. Stacking stam, IMO, is the number thing a new tank should get comfortable doing, forget socket bonus' if you want to survive end game raiding health points are king. This really came to light on Sindi when I got to 20 stacks and would would have kept going if my damn ghoul sacrificed faster.

06-10-2010, 10:15 AM
And just as an afterthought, how well would a high DPS raid spec work for PVP? i mean yeah i'd be missing talents like on a pale horse and other silence/stun/fear/disarm reducers but hey, if i kill em fast who cares?