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Thread: Tanking Multiple Mobs

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007

    Tanking Multiple Mobs

    Hi all, I'm a fairly new tank who has lurked on this forum and read it religiously, using it to better my character and playing. I usually play with a regular guild group and we play together fairly well, but today I PUGed Shat Halls and it's got me shook a bit.

    Granted, we had a few trouble players in the PUG who didn't know how to communicate and fled toward the instance entrance every time they got aggro and who failed to do their CC jobs, but I still feel I was ineffective in tanking multiple mobs in some of these 5,6, and 7 mob pulls.

    I used the /targetenemy, SA, /targetlasttarget Macro along with cleave and Thunderclap, but it just feels like I can't hang onto these multiples.

    Any suggestions?

    By the way, the specs in my sig (if they show up) are not up to date. Check me out on the Armory. Kananth in Blade's Edge.
    Last edited by Kananth; 11-06-2007 at 04:16 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    SH isn't fun without reliable CC. I'm not sure which multiple-mob pull you're referring to, but I'm going to assume either (1.) 4 groups before the first boss, and (2.) the mobs in the big room between the gauntlet-thing and the second boss.

    What I personally do when tanking multiple mobs is something like this:
    *. mark CC targets, my own tanking targets and clarify kill order
    *. set focus on 1st kill target
    *. shoot one of the CC targets (the seduce or poly)
    *. target my focus, Shield Slam, Demoralizing Shout
    *. target 2nd kill order, Sunder/Revenge
    *. target 3rd kill order, Shield Slam, Thunder Clap if clear of CC
    *. Concussion Blow if Taunt on cooldown if any mobs run towards squishies (Mocking Blow if all else fails)

    Tanking multiple mobs is dependent on smart DPS. It's definitely going to be harder in PUGs because people will most likely just pick their own targets as opposed to sticking with the kill order. =S
    I've got more plate than your grandma's cupboard.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    The biggest problem I see people having in tanking multi-mob pulls is that they are focusing too much on using abilities other than Thunder Clap (assuming you have it talented).

    Except for some heroic pulls, there is in principle no additional ability that you need to keep mobs off the healer. Fully talented, it doesn't generate all that much less TPS per mob than Consecration, and the only issue that you have to deal with is that it hits only four mobs. It is also really important to understand that healing not only generates not a lot of threat (one point of threat per two points of healing done, less with talents, even less for paladins), but that healing threat is also evenly split between non-CCed mobs.

    Some caveats apply: First, as I said, it only hits a maximum of four mobs. That means that you have to move around a bit to ensure that everything is being hit -- think of it as though you were dancing with the mobs . If you have one caster and up to four melee mobs, you can also tank the melee mobs with Thunder Clap and the caster with Spell Reflection to ensure that all of them get tagged.

    Second, Thunder Clap may be resisted, some mobs may be out of range, or a mob may have a damage absorption shield up (such as from the acolytes in Shattered Halls). When that happens, you'll have to notice it and catch those mobs with a Sunder Armor.

    But, beyond that, any tabbing around for Sunder Armor or other abilities is generally a waste of global cooldowns. More importantly, by simplifying your tanking routine for multi-mob pulls, your brain will be less busy and can focus on other things that require your attention. In particular, it's much easier to notice a loose mob when you're not frantically trying to cycle through all seven of them.

    Other classes can help, by the way. Reflective damage, such as Thorns or Fire Shield scales wonderfully for large pulls -- it generates the same threat for each mob, while healing aggro is split. Prayer of Mending and Earth Shield not only transfer healing aggro from the priest or shaman to you (meaning not only that it's aggro-free for the healer, but it actually increases your threat when you get healed by it), you'll also get the defiance/defensive stance bonus for said healing aggro.

    As to Shattered Halls, the biggest challenge that you're likely facing is that in relatively fresh level 70 gear, you're going to take a lot of heavy hits (especially the gladiator pulls -- quadruple mortal strike without CC -- can be pretty nasty). CC is not so much important for you in order to keep aggro, but just to survive some of the pulls in there.

    Most of the instance is relatively straightforward, though, as far as trash mobs are concerned. The Acolytes can be annoying when they bubble and you have to watch out for the Darkcasters fearing players into adds, but the only trash mob type of real concern is really the Sharpshooters, because their Scattershot makes you lose aggro globally. The easiest solution for those is to have ranged players off-tank the Sharpshooters, ideally someone with at least modest armor or health (a hunter with Distracting Shot is perfect, but we've even done it with a fire mage). They won't scattershot unless they have somebody in melee range, and they actually do less damage at range than they do in melee (ironically, on heroic mode they are much easier, because there they do an easily cleansed Viper Sting instead of their Scattershot).

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Agree with Roana.

    Thunderclap + cleave is all you need. You will usually have enough rage to cleave continously.

    Keep auto-attack on the mob that is the current kill target, as you need more threat against it. If it flees, and is low on HP, dont bother chasing.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Roana pretty much said it all. The only thing I'd add is that Demoralizing Shout is good for grabbing initial aggro (the threat generated is miniscule, as it's divided between each mob, but as long as no one else generates threat before you start building threat, that's not an issue).

    ಠ ,ಠ
    Dovie'andi se tovya sagain - it's time to roll the dice

  6. #6
    One thing that helped me was learning what mobs NOT to tank. I usually try and pick a healer or other clothie and tell the DPS I won't tank it and they are to burn it down first. This allows you to tank one less and concentrate on the melee classes that will one shot your healer. This doesn't work as well in SH where you have to kill the ones that call other mobs out but does work well for SL.

  7. #7
    Leaving first mob to die to a feral or fury warrior if available or rogue evasion tank, while building up threat on the rest of the group works too. I tanked the legionairres in dps gear with my shield in SH heroic.

    Just make sure the shooters in the first packs are properly CC'd, since they concussive shoot you causing your agro drop on all the mobs you have been tanking for a few seconds, which is just enough time to introduce your healer to the spirit guide.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Quote Originally Posted by Morthengel View Post
    Leaving first mob to die to a feral or fury warrior if available or rogue evasion tank, while building up threat on the rest of the group works too. I tanked the legionairres in dps gear with my shield in SH heroic.
    Well that's a good tip. I try not to even care about the first dps'ed target if your party knows how to ff efficently. My sequence to start a pull is shoot the second mob to dps'ed -> tclap -> Switch to skull(primary) and taunt (this gives the dps a couple of extra seconds which is usually enough to burn the sucker)-> switch tclap-> proceede with normal tanking.

    I find that it helps a bit if you do the marking since the tank is usually aware on which mob he has a threat lock. Also you don't need to build threat on the mob untill it's dead if you're high enough above the dps just switch to another mob and get a head start. 3/4 to the grave as a rule of thumb should do it.

    After that I'll just let the skull run after the dps and I don't bother picking it up since it's either dead allready or will be soon. That should give you all the head start you need.

    And dungeons are mostly about FF anyway... sadly this usually doesn't work in PUG's but I try to avoid those.

    Edit: Applies to warriors obviously

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    I'm not sure that I understand the rationale behind not tanking the first mob. It's not like I'm generally doing anything to the other mobs that precludes me from building threat on the first one?

    There are exceptions, such as mobs that you do not want to get in melee range of (such as the aforementioned Sharpshooters) or mobs that get two-shotted by DPS, anyway (imps in normal mode Shadow Labyrinth), maybe having a T5 group in a regular instance (i.e., where tanking overall becomes largely optional), but other than that, I just don't see the point of not generating threat on the focus-fired mob?

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