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Thread: Death Knight Threat...discussion/concerns

  1. #21
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    The sentiment is not a bad one, DK tanking could use some tweaks to be sure. On long running fights I haven't run into anyone who can really pass my threat (and I had the pleasure of running with a frostfire mage, fury warrior, and enhancement shaman, not sure how that last one worked, debuffed and all, that were all hard on my threat). The issue, threat-wise seems to be entirely at the front of the fight. Snap threat, as we like to call it.

    With my prot warrior, I can charge, shield slam, shockwave, tclap, and then start throwing cleaves/heroic strikes into my devastate/revenge/shield slam mix and it's a huge starting chunk with a solid build after. On my pally I can shield, hammer, consecrate (or if I'm so lucky for it to be undead, holy wrath/exorcism lawlthreat), and start stacking 3 stacks of vengeance. I can actually rival or beat my warrior for snap threat just by stringing those hard hitting specials. My druid has been boomy for ages, so I can't REALLY speak with authority on that, but bears seem to do just fine.

    With my DK, to set up strong lasting threat, we really want to lead with 2 diseases up front, that means 2 cooldowns for IT and PS, though if you're smart you can set IT before they reach you and have Pest ready for the second your PS GCD is over. Now we have diseases on the pull, our main target has taken 1.5-2k dmg from the lead in and all the other targets start ticking for ~500 (depending on spec of course, Unholy disease ticks being bigger still) total. If we drop DnD that's worth about 600 dps maybe more averaging up a tiny bit for crits, but as you said Jandon, that set of moves has put all your runes on CD with (4x1.5=6.0s) 4 seconds to wait for a rune to come back up so we can do something other than auto-attack. I say that as unholy where I sometimes don't have the RP for UB yet (I have RS macro'd into my core moves). With Frost/Blood it's plenty reasonable to RP dump here for one more CD, but some like to avoid blowing their reserve so they can get more RS's.

    I think it's this blackout that's the real challenge since you end up feeling a bit helpless. I've taken to blowing Blood Tap at that moment and throwing in a Blood Boil (again, I'm currently unholy, BB hits for 500-600 and crits nicely depending on group comp) just to boost my threat lead a bit, though this then consumes it as a safety maneuver for other abilities for the next minute.

    The only time I have trouble with losing threat is on the first 10 sec of combat where the dps can ramp up faster than I can on threat.

    I like your ideas, Jandon, about modifying BB. In my practical mind I know it really feels whimpy unless you're Unholy and critting, but at the same time, on an aoe pull it is actually a nice threat pump, especially for Unholy. Frost has a wailer of a HB (I highly recommend a point in Deathchill, even as a tank, guaranteed crit on that will cement a serious threat jump). Blood has always been rough on big AOE threat. You can and should have Morbidity for the faster DnD's, but as much as math might make it net higher I am loathed to spend blood runes on BB. Hopefully the new Heart Strike with a bit of good ole tab targetting might make blood a serious multi-target tank so long as there aren't TOO many targets. On 2-3 targets, a well-talented blood knight could wrack up some fast numbers (DRM, Blood Strikes, Subversion, Dark Conviction/Dark Vengeance, MoM, and spam spam spam those Heart Strikes into the crowd), though still you have the 3-set used from PS/IT/Pest to set up diseases and make that work well, and that's still 4.5 sec before you can start your sharp upward burst on threat.

    The other place I feel vulnerable as a tank is when mobs get loose on a messy pull or when adds join the fight. Beyond multi-target threat generation, the only tools I have to bring them back in is a taunt and a mocking blow, thankfully both ranged. But that doesn't get it done on a set of 4 mobs, and as we've discussed, snap threat is not so easy for us to make up for that. Blizz mentioned a while back that they were designing a new sort of taunt for DKs, something unique the way Righteous Defense is the unique taunt for Pallies. I really hope they're doing that and it has some multi-target like application, since I have no tool for Intimidating Roar/Shout style taunting since BB became pure threat/damage.

    I do think our threat generation needs a bit of tweaking, since we actually do have to work harder for it than other classes (well, I work harder for it on my DK than my warrior or pally), though I think a small adjustment to Frost Presence's threat modification might do the trick, something small (not that we see the numbers any more) would likely make all the difference and give us the edge of fast scaling dps.
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  2. #22
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    I totally agree with the both of you. Blackout's and adds are our weaknesses. When doing H VH and I am on blackout with adds coming in, the only thing I can do is pop 5 min CD for Empower Rune Weap which can help gain some control back but with heavy hitting TG warriors, Frostfire Mages, and Ele Sham's,... its rough. The times when I am on blackout at the 6 seconds or so after the intial pull, I start to watch omen like a hawk. One thing especially for most frost tanks, is there are soo many shiny tank talents that I forget about dps/threat. Frost for me atleast is a real balancing act and that could be where my threat problems lay.

    But I would have to say that just a small tweak or an ability thats spamable with maybe a 5 rune power cost that does nothing but gen threat would be nice. Even if its on GCD, its more help than a 40 RP FS. I dont know about the rest of yall, but I am not liking the fact that even while in combat, I seem to be losing rune power. This may be designed as such to not let us stack soo much RP for huge dumps, but I can drop a DnD and hit Horn of winter and look up and those 5 leftovers are gone. It would be helpfull that with some spells like FS that cost soo much RP that it not degrade while in combat.

    Just my 2 cents.

  3. #23
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    I have been experiencing this as well and I'm not even in 25 man content. i tried discussing this on the wow forums and all I got were epeens bragging about how they never have any issues and I need to learn to play.

    That being said, reading some of this does have me concerned, mainly because I only do about 1100 dps on a single target with my current gear now that I have pure tanking gear. My hit is capped, my defense is capped, i'm in nearly all purples from either 10 mans or heroics. but my threat just sucks, nearly around 2200 along side my 1100. I'm not sure what I am doing wrong, if I am specced wrong or I have my rotations wrong, perhaps I'm glyphed wrong.

    I am frost specced and unfortunately I logged out in DPS gear so you can't see what I'm wearing.

    I use the standard single target rotation, IT, PS, OB, BS, BS with rune strike macroed to each ability, using frost strike whenever there is excess RP. I am getting really frustrated especially when I see other death knight tanks talking about 5-7k tps...how the hell...seriously, to reach 7ktps would mean I would need to push close to 3k dps...in DPS gear I can see that, but in tanking gear? Tanking gear has defense, avoidance, expertise and hit...which I got a ton of...but my crit is low, armor pen is low, and as useless as it may be, I have no extra haste. Mitigation wise it's awesome, I am easy to heal, I don't need this change to Frost Presence IMO, what I need is more freakin threat...if it's something i'm doing wrong, i'll try anything.

    Do I need to tank in DPS gear and just get the new titansteel +def weapon in the patch along with the defense runeforge? Would seem like a big waste of time if I had to do that. Maybe another issue with my raid group is we seem to be rolling with 3x frostfire mages.
    Last edited by deramon; 12-29-2008 at 12:02 PM.

  4. #24
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    Also to the person asking about frost aura and acclimation, There are fire, frost, nature and shadow resist auras/totems in the game, but there are not any for arcane or holy.

    Currently there is only level 80 craftable gear for frost resist.

    You used the example of Sapphiron where you can gear up and plan for it, but Malygos on the other hand who deals crap tons of arcane damage, you can't. Frost aura and Acclimation can give you an edge here, along with that arcane resist head enchant. You won't ever hit the cap, but you will at least be able to cut it a good 30-40%

  5. #25
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    Here's an idea about having a couple more high-threat abilities without changing the feel of the class...

    Why not make it so that the big strike powers near the bottom of each talent tree have slightly different effects based on what presence you're in?

    Maybe all three of them could have the following extra effects:
    -in Blood Presence, will self-heal for 4% instead of 2% of damage dealt.
    -in Frost Presence, will cause 150% threat.
    -in Unholy Presence... i dunno. 10% chance to refresh diseases or something?

    I dunno if it would work, but it'd be a nice way to diversify stuff a little more =)

  6. #26
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    Blood Boil could probably use a buff, but it's great for AoE. If you're looking for trash pull/heroic TPS, hybridize it. Use one BS and one BB, or just let the diseases tick on the off-target.
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  7. #27
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    Honestly, we don't need ability reworks, any threat discrepancy could be fixed by a simple tweak of the frost presence threat multiplier. That being said, we seem to run on a different scale than other classes. Pallies and Warriors seem to scale a lot more softly with gear, where as DKs improve a lot more. I think part of this may be the improvements of getting more dps/tps value from weapons thanks to using weapons with dps stats. When I started off tanking raids my warrior/pally friends could out-threat me quite easily on single targets and pallies were on my level or above for aoe threat in the same gear. Now I can out-threat them both for aoe, even in Naxx where my pally friends get to cheat with extra moves, and I can give them a run for their money on single target threat. I'm curious to see what happens in tier 8.

    I had a funny analogy occur to me the other day. DK threat generation feels like racing a manual transmission in a car not designed for racing (i.e. long shifting path and long clutch draw). I can create bigger TPS when I have all my runes up, but I run out and have slower periods on threat that depend pretty much on RS procs to keep really building. It can be uncomfortable or disappointing (depending on where you normally sit next to your dps section) when you hit one of those 'shift' spots and you want to put on the speed. Really, thanks to class dynamics, you can spread the moves and smooth out the consistency of your threat generation, but it won't get you more bang for your buck.

    I'd actually love to see a move that can only be used when all your runes are on CD, something that does a shot like another special swing, say instant weapon strike with a 30-60 sec CD. That would make for a nice threat smoother. It'd be ideal if it had a unparriable/undodgeable flag like RS, and could easily have a threat multiplier instead of bigger damage to keep it from being big dps numbers. Otherwise we just have to make the best use of Blood Tap and Empower Rune Weapon you can to smooth out that work (incidentally if you aren't using Blood Tap almost on CD you're wasting a major opportunity and giving up threat).
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  8. #28
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    Yeah I need to use Blood Tap much more than I do. So much else to watch for it tends to get forgotten about

  9. #29
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    I know blizzard is probably considering a frost presence multiplier "i'm definately a huge supporter of giving us more single target threat somehow"...

    but in this situation i'm going to play devils advocate

    what happens to our aoe threat when they give us a frost presence threat multiplier... as it is DK's can start after every other class and pick up aoe threat like nothing

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by nivani View Post
    One thing that has certainly helped (read band-aid) has been a recent glyph change I made. I tossed on the SS glyph and went a dummy for an hour messing around with rotations the other day. I came to the surprising conclusion that that for single target threat my rotation should consist of BS and SS. That's it. (RS macroed to SS, and extra runic dumped into DCs of course!) No PS. No IT. Just ignore the suckers and go to town. On the rare occasion I don't get a disease application from the glyph within 5 SS's I EPW and fire off two more. Counter-intuitive I know, but the results were impressive.

    This is not, however, a fix to our threat issues. I've got fury warriors and FFB mages pushing 4.3k+ dps behind me and things get a bit scary. We really need a talent mod to increase the threat mod of SS. Something like [Anticipation]: Increases your dodge by X%. In addition, your SS and Oblits cause an additional 40% threat.
    Wow i always thought that was a terrible idea. I definitly need to try that out sounds quite awsome.

    Initially i thought DK's would scale better then other tanks since we dont have initial threat on our moves, but lately i think its the other way around due to itimisation and our abilities. Take expertice as an example wich is a great boost to warrior threat, but for dk's who uses spells and abilities that cant be dodged/parried we dont scale so well with expertice. Also warriors have the ability to put on a block set or even change their talents to get more threat. Dk's on the other hand have more or less 15 vital talent points we can mess around with to get more threat. As for bears they can switch a cupple of pices to do more dps/threat while dk's are stuck with using tank plate in all slots just to not eat crits.

    As it is now dk's have 15 vital tanking points and the rest is dps points more or less and the gear we use only benefit survivability except for strenght. There realy is not much room to have separate sets/specs for threat and survivability as a dk compared to other classes imo.

    This isnt a whine to say other classes are better, but i'm trying to figure out why our threat scales so bad. Maybe there is some areas that makes our threat scale better that i have overlooked?

    I'm fine with dps catching up on threat, Blizz have already said they would. But i get the feeling dk's are the one to be caught up first.

  11. #31
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    Im in the same bout as you guys.. My threat is all over the place. Theres times Im at 4-6k TPS with no problems holding aggro other times I know RNG plays a factor but Im sitting at 2k.2.5k and I cant get out of there. Same rotation No idea why. I know DPS plays a factor in this but even with crits Im not getting over 2500 tps. My threat is very unconsistant and I dont know why. Im in pretty much best in slot tanking gear. While I seen fellow warrior and druid tank doing 5-7k tps every time with no sweat. Very annoying because the dps is riding my ass and other times they cant even come close. Maybe my hit and exp is low.. but I think im around 225 hit and 21 exp... Anyways wondering if anyone has some tips because its getting annoying my threat is wrose.. in "better" gear.

  12. #32
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    I was (still am sometimes) having the same issues in Unholy. What I've done is picked up Dark Conviction and unbound Rune Strike to all of my abilities and only macroed it to Scourge Strike, that way I can definitely unload some Death Coils. I've found Death Coil to be a huuge threat boost.

    I'm horrible at numbers, but, I can guarantee this helped me quite a bit with my threat issue. Come patch though it'll probably be best to macro RS back to most of my abilities.

  13. #33
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    Oh wtf, who let Enos register here?

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  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wizler View Post
    Im in the same bout as you guys.. My threat is all over the place. Theres times Im at 4-6k TPS with no problems holding aggro other times I know RNG plays a factor but Im sitting at 2k.2.5k and I cant get out of there. Same rotation No idea why. I know DPS plays a factor in this but even with crits Im not getting over 2500 tps. My threat is very unconsistant and I dont know why. Im in pretty much best in slot tanking gear. While I seen fellow warrior and druid tank doing 5-7k tps every time with no sweat. Very annoying because the dps is riding my ass and other times they cant even come close. Maybe my hit and exp is low.. but I think im around 225 hit and 21 exp... Anyways wondering if anyone has some tips because its getting annoying my threat is wrose.. in "better" gear.
    If its not not a gear issue then its most likely a group comp issue. Do you generally run with a prot pally? and do your highs and lows correspond to his addence? I see about a 1K TPS gain just from BoSanc. I normally run about the same as you of 2.5K to 3K. When I have BoSanc I cant dip below 4K TPS. I peak out arround 6K TPS on certain bosses. Also, if you dont have a SP or boomkin you will suffer some partial resisting on SS due to being low on the hit cap. Other than that, when I have sucky threat its either due to not doing a tight rotation or just an unlucky string of misses/parries.

    Also, RS is point for point better than DC. In my top endish gear I RS noncrit for 4K. So that being divided by 2 gives us a Dam/RP of 2000/10 = 200 dam/RP. DC on average is about 2500 or 3000 (non crit). So top end it is 3000/40 = 75 dam/RP. So RS is about doubly better. So I will keep everything macrod to RS and if I dont have RP for DC after my rune usage, thats ok with me.

    My goal is to get to about 5K TPS in a normal raid (this includes BoSanc as our RL is a prot pally!) and after than the DPS need to start using threat dump CDs. We do have mages that can burst to about 7K DPS during Hero. I just hope that Uldar gives us a nice threat boost cuz im not sure how im giong to hold against 9K DPS.
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  15. #35
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    I havn't read all the posts above deeply but I'd like to share some of my experiences as a tanking DK. My current specc is a half blood / UH build: Talent Calculator - World of Warcraft with my gear being: The World of Warcraft Armory

    I optimized my build for single target threat and survival and so far I have been getting the best numbers regarding TPS with this build (though I'm a frost novice, never specced it). I get the extra stamina and exp from VotTW, aswell as still getting SS with BA (dunno how nice it'll be post patch but I think I'll keep it since SS is down there anyways). imp AMS and the AMZ is a really nice bonus aswell and all the single target talents speaks for themselfs. Accually this build will be even better post patch when looking at TPS when you see the changes to Necrosis - Spell - World of Warcraft too.

    I've tanked all the encounters ingame with the gear I currently have and I must say that I'm very positive about how the DK is pushing into WoW as a tank. I can usually push around 4-5k stable TPS peaking up at 7-8k with some nice crits. On the other hand if you're really unlucky you could go down at 2k TPS but that's not common now days.

    I'm using the PS->IT->SS->BS->BS | SS->SS->SS rotation with a RS macro to all buttons and that's what's pushing out the most TPS for me.

    I also saw you talked about some openers when engaging a boss. I usually go with:

    DaD (since it's range I think it's worth putting up since you get your CDs going before engaging) -> IT (same) -> PS -> BS -> Empower Rune Weapon -> SS -> SS -> Blood Tap -> SS then continuing with the rotation I stated above.

    This works for me, feel free to ask/reply.

  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by nips View Post
    Wow i always thought that was a terrible idea. I definitly need to try that out sounds quite awsome.

    Initially i thought DK's would scale better then other tanks since we dont have initial threat on our moves, but lately i think its the other way around due to itimisation and our abilities. Take expertice as an example wich is a great boost to warrior threat, but for dk's who uses spells and abilities that cant be dodged/parried we dont scale so well with expertice. Also warriors have the ability to put on a block set or even change their talents to get more threat. Dk's on the other hand have more or less 15 vital talent points we can mess around with to get more threat. As for bears they can switch a cupple of pices to do more dps/threat while dk's are stuck with using tank plate in all slots just to not eat crits.

    As it is now dk's have 15 vital tanking points and the rest is dps points more or less and the gear we use only benefit survivability except for strenght. There realy is not much room to have separate sets/specs for threat and survivability as a dk compared to other classes imo.

    This isnt a whine to say other classes are better, but i'm trying to figure out why our threat scales so bad. Maybe there is some areas that makes our threat scale better that i have overlooked?

    I'm fine with dps catching up on threat, Blizz have already said they would. But i get the feeling dk's are the one to be caught up first.
    Kind of lacking details.

    1.) Expertise is every bit as valuable for us as Warriors, though Frost will like it slightly less than Blood/Unholy.

    2.) We actually have relatively few "tanking-only" talents that we put points in, where as warriors and paladins have an entire tree that is about 60-70% survival talents that are important to their tanking. Depending on what I'm trying to accomplish most of my specs only have 5-8 points that I feel comfortable swinging around to try stuff with, but I think the key there is that you be aiming to accomplish something overall with your talent points and the 3 trees. For example, some people want to combine Bone Shield with Frigid Dreadplate or Vet of the 3rd War. Personally, for tanking, I'm a big fan of using the compounding bonuses of each tree, but I digress. The point is, DK tanking specs are, essentially, a balance of survival and damage dealing (read: threat). But then, that's what it is for everyone...

    3.) We have about as much ability to swap in tank gear and dps gear as any other class. The only place where we fall behind is not having a shield/sword with tanking stats (and the shortage of Northrend tanking trinkets that BC tanks can bandaid with leftovers), but in the next patch that's getting heavily compensated for with the new sigil and rune.


    I've found that my threat scales remarkably well, better than my tanking counterparts it seems, though that's only so far.
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  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Satorri View Post
    Kind of lacking details.

    1.) Expertise is every bit as valuable for us as Warriors, though Frost will like it slightly less than Blood/Unholy.

    2.) We actually have relatively few "tanking-only" talents that we put points in, where as warriors and paladins have an entire tree that is about 60-70% survival talents that are important to their tanking. Depending on what I'm trying to accomplish most of my specs only have 5-8 points that I feel comfortable swinging around to try stuff with, but I think the key there is that you be aiming to accomplish something overall with your talent points and the 3 trees. For example, some people want to combine Bone Shield with Frigid Dreadplate or Vet of the 3rd War. Personally, for tanking, I'm a big fan of using the compounding bonuses of each tree, but I digress. The point is, DK tanking specs are, essentially, a balance of survival and damage dealing (read: threat). But then, that's what it is for everyone...

    3.) We have about as much ability to swap in tank gear and dps gear as any other class. The only place where we fall behind is not having a shield/sword with tanking stats (and the shortage of Northrend tanking trinkets that BC tanks can bandaid with leftovers), but in the next patch that's getting heavily compensated for with the new sigil and rune.


    I've found that my threat scales remarkably well, better than my tanking counterparts it seems, though that's only so far.

    1) No dk's dont benefit as much from experice as warriors. Runestrike/all desises/frostsrike cant be be dodged/parried and all specs use those.

    2) this might be personal but i do feel i can spec around more on my warrior if i need threat or survivability. While on my dk its 15 set points for tanking and the rest is mostly for dps or nobrainers like bone armor in a unholybuild.

    3) No dk's cant shift around gear with the same result as other classes. Take a druid with aoe problems as an example. If the druid slap on some dps gear their dodge or stam might go down abit, but their threat goes up alot. As for warriors they can put on a block/expertice/hit set for more threat. Dk's can stack hit/expertice, but it wount see anything close to the same threat increase.

    When i see the posts here some are doing 2.5k threat in raids and tbh i can do that on my lvl 70 warrior selfbuffed.

    There might be other thing that i have missed out since im no expert at dk tanking, but dont come here and say expertice benefit dk's as much as warriors that's just wrong.

    *edit
    You are right about things might get better in the patch and our threat might become less of an issue if we are able to swap some tank pices for more dps. Fingers crossed.

  18. #38
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    Wow, a lot of you guys make me green with envy looking at your gear. I'm just barely below 28K HP/25K armor with a dodge of 24%-ish and 22%-ish on my parry IIRC. I'm The only Tank DK that's geared in my guild and have most of my 10 man items I wanted. I'm barely scraping by with the def cap as well. We've yet to clear an EoE and a lot of our DPS are still putting out less than 2K DPS. For me currently threat only gets close whith our best lock. 10K shadow bolts as an opener ensure that I have to taunt something off him consistantly :-P

    Anyway, to my question, What is the best entry level weapon for a DK tank? I have a TS beat stick, the Saliva coated spear and the Wrath spear. Of the three would the TS destroyer be best? I use the spear most for it's super high stamina. I typically run 1500-2000 DPS in raids using the spear. Which would typically generate the best overall threat?
    Last edited by DethSquid; 01-13-2009 at 07:09 AM.
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  19. #39
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    I find that using this build is great for AoE threat, and does a moderately good job as an MT, though surely not the greatest. It's flexible enough to take over if the MT (heaven forbid) dies, but also makes me perfectly capable of pulling trash through raids and taking adds off the boss with ease, because of cooldown on DnD and great AoE threat. It keeps heroics easy, as well, for badges.

    Throwing DnD to start the fight (i find that this creates the most initial aggro on a group of mobs), then tossing Grip on the mob I mark (to facilitate single target aggro through diseases) and launching PS > IT > Pest creates heavy AoE aggro to begin with, while making the initially pulled mob focus on me long enough to get my diseases off and get a jump on the DPS for threat.
    After that, with the increased time on diseases, i'm able to use Blood boil + HB (oblit, if HB is on Cooldown) and keep AoE threat to a max, without having to redo my diseases and blow out my rotation. This also allows me for more DnD's when trash comes in or when i need quick aggro gains and HB is on cooldown.
    With Frost strike coming up often for an instant single target smash i can keep the marked mob on me relatively easily, holding aggro long enough for any DPS to take him out, and the AoE threat i started with keeps the rest on me when the original dies.
    It makes pulling adds in Naxx very easy, because DnD can be thrown on the casters/ranged in emergencies (due to low cooldown) and in non-emergencies i can just taunt the add mobs over to me and throw a Pest off an existing mob, followed by a HB crit from the talent.

    This isn't the best MT build, because it's mostly AoE threat, and i made it out of a compilation of suggestions and theories from others on this site for an OT niche in my guild, but when in a pinch i can take over and hold my own long enough to finish.

    I'd appreciate any suggestions that improve this build for OT, although my AoE threat has never been an issue with this.

  20. #40
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    Hey Dethsquid. I used the Saliva Pike until I got the delicious Inevitable Defeat from Naxx25. It's hard to top that tastey high stam and the nice crit value. I don't think you'd really notice a big difference among any of the weapons, though, so long as they're over 100 Str/100 Stam.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Horacio View Post
    Who f-ing divided by zero?!?

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