This thread should consolidate our knowledge on dual-wield tanking, and ideally any new threads on the topic should come in here. DPS
DW is discussed this other thread
I'll update this post as we agree on more facts. Updated for patch 3.08.
NOTE: we are not promoting nor advocating dual-wield tanking. This thread's purpose is to discuss it and show it can be viable under the right conditions (and dangerous otherwise).
Some credible analysis and maths has been done which has shown that:
* in terms of parry-gib risk, DW tanking is equal to two-handed tanking if you have 21 expertise skill.
If you have less
than 21 expertise:
* Dual-wield tanking exposes you to more parrygibs than 2H tanking
* Therefore you increase risk of taking spike damage
* and should be avoided.
Casual DK tanks can do whatever they want, because their guild won't care about a wipe or two more. They should just be aware of the risk they're taking.
The risks and disadvantages
- you offer more chances for the boss to parry you and for him to get a hasted next attack (60% faster iirc). This behaviour is confirmed
to still be in the game.
- your death strike heals you for less than it would from a 2Her.
- talents which lever from auto-attacks become more valuable (eg. killing machine
) although some in turn increase your risk of being parried (eg. Blood caked blade
) and are not attractive.
- you can skip Annhiliation talent because you will use Howling Blast as FU ability
- rune strike cannot be parried, so if many of your attacks end up being rune strikes rather than normal hits, you reduce your 'parryable' attacks by that proportion
- because you are attacking faster, you get to use a higher proportion of your rune strike opportunities than a 2Her tank. A 2H speed of 3.4 makes it possible for you to dodge a boss' attack twice within that window, but because RS works on next melee swing, you will only get to use one of those two opportunities. In constrast, a DW tank will get to use more of their RS opportunities with their 2.5 attack speed.
- patch 3.08 introduced a 25 Defence skill plus 2% health runeforge for 2Hers only.
Expertise, to-hit and reducing those parrygibs
If you stack expertise, you reduce the chance the boss can parry you.
Bosses have a 14.25% parry chance and reducing that to 1% would take 467 expertise rating (= 57 expertise). That's massive and it's not sensible to even try to achieve that when stacking stamina would be more effective instead.
For level 83 the soft cap is 6.5% dodge or 26 expertise (214 rating), and the hard cap is 14.25% parry or 57 expertise (468 rating). Source
It has been calculated that you need 21 expertise skill in order to bring your parrygib chance to equivalence with a 2Her tank.
Spell Hit and Melee Hit scale differently with Hit Rating. You need 26.2 hit rating for 1% chance to hit with spells and 32.7 hit rating for 1% hit to melee attacks.
* 1 Expertise Skill reduces the chance your attacks will be dodged/parried by 0.25%
* 32.79 Rating is equal to 1% less chance your attacks will be dodged/parried.
* 8.20 Rating is equal to 0.25% less chance your attacks will be dodged/parried and thus is equal to 1 Expertise Skill.[/size]
Dual-wielding, the offhand has a 24% chance to miss rather than the usual 9% for two-handed weapons. So to-hit as a stat increases your dps nicely. Note, your special attacks (eg. frost strike) disregard the offhand miss rate, your special melee attacks are 9% and spells are 17% even if you are DW tanking. To-hit does not effect your survivability, just your TPS.
There is some debate at the moment and analysis in this thread
that perhaps it's now 8%. It's a minor point, effects DPSers more.
OK I want to DW tank anyhow! Spec? Talents?
You will largely be a Frost tank.
Ideal starting weapons: Infantry Assault Blade
and Titansteel Bonecrusher
You want two slow weapons, otherwise you increase the chance of parrygibs beyond what 21 expertise protects you from. Other choices are here
, there aren't many.
Frost has the one-handed talent
, so every DW spec would take that up for TPS and to-hit. For DPS, the 0/32/39 is often considered the highest spec, but a tank has different concerns. We'll look at any tree that's had some analysis.
Death coil is a great RP dump for all trees because it cannot be parried either, but note it suffers from being treated like a spell for to-hit, but benefits from scaling on attack power (and not from weapon damage, like frost strike as an alternative). We speculate DC will do more damage than FS as an RP dump, but need more maths on whether eg frost talents swing it.
Sample build 1
and build 2
can't be dodged, blocked or parried. Treated like melee for to-hit. Good.
is brilliant. It can't be parried and it replaces obliterate in your rotation, therefore reducing the chances of parrygib. Mandatory.
, more dps without increased risk of parry. Good.
can be parried, but so can obliterate which it replaces. No advantage.
increases your white damage with no additional risk. Good.
Analysis maths to show that DW DK parrygib requires +16 expertise
This linked thread is the central argument where DW tanking has been shown to be viable. It's good reading.
Here is the thread
Here are links to the key posts within that thread:
Satorri's first analysis
seemed pretty solid.
It gets heated here posting
. Quite a good debate ensues.
puts the maths together which is foundation of our 21 expertise baseline.
Tony also restates the purpose of the thread here
, which is not to advocate DW tanking just to show that it's viable.
There is also an effort to collect data on raids using WWS, and an account set up for this purpose.
Here are the details
So you can upload your combatlogs there and share the information.
Useful factual references
Threat values for DK abilities
Updated Jan 4:
- refreshed to 3.08 content, made more positive to DW tanking