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Thread: Tanking Topics #4: Cooldowns

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    Tanking Topics #4: Cooldowns

    This is the fourth post in a series of topics dealing with tanking issues. These posts are the distillation of discussions*, and are presented here formally for the community to debate in a peer-review manner.

    In this topic we look at how cooldowns, the "emergency buttons" in specific, affect gameplay and how we approach encounters. Of particular interest for this discussion are progression encounters.

    Cooldowns and Encounters
    In Wrath of the Lich King, we have had an interesting introduction. We begin with Naxxramas, which is older content refreshed via storyline to be relevant again. The mechanics of the encounters have not changed, only certain tunings to bring them in line for level 80 characters and 25 person raids. In addition, Naxxramas has been stated as being entry-level content, and in practice is certainly not classed as progression content by experienced raid guilds (this is not to say that it is easy for new raiders by any means!) The Malygos and Sartharion encounters are new, and bring challenge to raids via achievements (time and personnel limits) or hard modes (drakes up).

    Beginning with Sartharion with drakes up, we have seen the beginnings of the use of cooldowns as a means to the end. That is, using cooldowns in rotation to win the encounter. With the Ulduar content being tested on the PTR, we are seeing more of the same - and to be perfectly fair, we haven't seen much of the content at this point - but it is likely that several encounters will benefit from this strategy whether designed that way or not. However, the now-famous "Patchwerk (PTR DPS Test)" mob has been very good at illustrating cooldown shenanigans. (Reference: World of Warcraft - English (NA) Forums -> Patchwerk Tank Testing 2nd Trials)

    With that in mind, here is a description of the cooldowns available to the tank and non-tank classes alike, followed by some thoughts on the matter.

    Warrior Cooldowns
    Last Stand increases the warrior's health by 30% for 20 seconds, with a 5 minute cooldown. A glyph is available to reduce the cooldown to 2 minutes, at the cost of reducing the amount of health gained to 20%.

    Shield Wall grants the warrior 60% reduction on all incoming damage for 12 seconds, with a 5 minute cooldown. The four piece tier 7 set bonus increases the duration to 15 seconds. The Improved Disciplines talent can reduce the cooldown by 1 minute. A glyph is coming for 3.1 that would reduce the cooldown of Shield Wall by ?? (was 3, not going live as that) minutes, at the cost of reducing the damage reduction to 40%.

    Shield Block can be considered an emergency button. In normal situations, Shield Block provides 15-30% extra mitigation over its duration, granting some relief from incoming physical damage. In the right situation, Shield Block can remove all incoming damage for its duration. This is very limited to scenarios where incoming individual hits are each releatively not very hard, and are not magical in effect. There is, however, no charge count on Shield Block - any number of incoming hits over the duration will be blocked.

    Enraged Regeneration regenerates 30% of the warrior's total health over 10 seconds, with a 3 minute cooldown. While not an emergency button in the same sense as others, it can be quite useful when healing is tight. A forthcoming glyph will be available to increase the amount of health regenerated to 40% of the warrior's total health.

    Paladin Cooldowns
    Divine Protection grants the Paladin 50% reduction on all incoming damage for 12 seconds, with a 5 minute cooldown. The 4-piece Tier 7 bonus can increase the duration to 15 seconds. The Sacred Duty talent can reduce the cooldown by 1 minute. Divine Protection and Avenging Wrath cannot be used within 30 seconds of each other. Divine Protection also causes Forbearance, which restricts the use of Divine Shield for 3 minutes.

    Ardent Defender is a passive ability that causes all damage taken while under 35% health to be reduced by 30%. Although very effective when used in AOE situations or in conjunction with Divine Protection, it is very weak against large incoming hits.

    Druid cooldowns:
    Barkskin grants the druid 20% reduction on incoming damage for 12 seconds, with a 1 minute cooldown. The four piece tier 7 set bonus increases the duration to 15 seconds. Useable while stunned or otherwise crowd controlled.

    Survival Instincts increases the druid's health by 30% for 20 seconds, with a 5 minute cooldown.

    Frenzied Regeneration converts rage into health in the form of a HoT that heals 3% of the druid's total health per second, for 10 seconds on a 3 minute cooldown. A glyph increases healing received by the druid by 20% while Frenzied Regeneration is active (causing the Frenzied Regeneration itself to heal 36% of the druid's health in addition to boosting other incoming heals as well.) While not an emergency button in the same sense as others, it can be quite useful when healing is tight, particularly when glyphed.

    Death Knight Cooldowns
    A note on Death Knight cooldowns: All Death Knights have access to Icebound Fortitude, Anti-Magic Shell, and to a lesser extent Army of the Dead, as well as the following depending on spec: Mark of Blood, Vampiric Blood, Lichborne, Unbreakable Armor, Anti-Magic Zone, Bone Shield, and to a lesser extent Rune Tap. Many of these are talent-based; no talent spec is going to have access to all of these cooldowns! (Also see the Q&A, below)

    Icebound Fortitude makes the Death Knight immune to Stun effects and reduces damage taken by 20% for 12 seconds, with a 1 minute cooldown, and costs moderate RP to activate. The four piece tier 7 set bonus increases the duration to 15 seconds. Additional Defense skill will increase the amount of damage reduction given, to around 35% at 540 Defense. The Glyph of Icebound Fortitude will also ensure that Icebound Fortitude always provides at least 30% damage reduction regardless of Defense skill. The Guile of Gorefiend talent can increase the duration of Icebound Fortitude by up to 6 seconds.

    Anti-Magic Shell absorbs 75% of all incoming spell damage and prevents harmful magical effects from being applied for 5 seconds, with a 45 second cooldown, and costs moderate RP to activate. The Glyph of Anti-Magic Shell will increase its duration by 2 seconds. The Magic Suppression talent can increase the absorption to 100%.

    Army of the Dead is a 6 second channeling spell where the Death Knight's dodge + parry chance is instead used as damage reduction. The Death Knight cannot avoid hits (but can still be missed), but the damage is significantly reduced. It is very limited by a cost of one of each rune, a 20 minute cooldown, and the actions of the summoned Ghouls themselves (who have a Taunt ability, but will not taunt bosses).

    Death Pact sacrifices any of the Death Knight's summoned minions (Ghoul, Army of the Dead Ghoul, Ebon Gargoyle) in exchange for 40% of maximum health, with a two minute cooldown and requires high RP to activate. This effect can critically heal.

    Lichborne (11-point Frost talent) makes the Death Knight immune to Fear, Charm, and Sleep effects, and increases chance to be missed by melee attacks by 25% for 15 seconds. It has a 3 minute cooldown. Death Knights may also heal themselves with Death Coil while Lichborne is active.

    Anti-Magic Zone (31-point Unholy talent) creates a magical barrier that reduces spell damage taken by those standing inside it by 75%, and costs 1 Unholy Rune to activate. It lasts for 10 seconds or a maximum of 10,000 + 200% of the Death Knight's attack power in damage absorbed, and has a 2 minute cooldown.

    Rune Tap (11-point Blood talent) instantly heals the Death Knight for 10% of maximum health. It has a 1 minute cooldown, and costs 1 Blood Rune to activate. Improved Rune Tap will increase the amount healed to as much as 20% of maximum health, and reduce the cooldown by up to 30 seconds. The Glyph of Rune Tap will cause all party members to be healed by 10% of their maximum health as well. This effect can critically heal.

    Mark of Blood (21-point Blood talent) is a debuff placed on an enemy that causes each attack made to heal the enemy's target for 4% of their maximum healthm. It has a 3 minute cooldown, costs 1 Blood Rune to activate, and lasts for a maximum of 20 seconds or 20 hits.

    Will of the Necropolis (41-point Blood Talent) is a passive ability that causes any incoming damage that would reduce the Death Knight to under 35% of maximum health to be reduced by up to 15%. Like Ardent Defender, this is not an effect that is triggered by the Death Knight, but is included as it functions essentially as an emergency button.

    The next three abilities, Vampiric Blood, Bone Shield, and Unbreakable Armor are mutually exclusive - a Death Knight will have only one of them

    Vampiric Blood (36-point Blood talent) increases the Death Knight's health by 15% and increases healing received by 35% for 20 seconds. It costs 1 Blood Rune and has a 1 minute cooldown. The Glyph of Vampiric Blood will increase the duration by 10 seconds.

    Unbreakable Armor (36-point Frost talent) increases Strength by 25% and reduces all incoming Physical damage by a flat value for 20 seconds. The amount of damage absorbed increases with Armor. Unbreakable Armor costs 1 Frost rune and has a 1 minute cooldown. The Glyph of Unbreakable Armor will increase the damage absorption effect by 1%.

    Bone Shield (36-point Unholy talent) reduces all damage taken by the Death Knight by 20% and increases damage dealt by 2%. It costs 1 Unholy Rune, has a 1 minute cooldown, and lasts for 4 charges or up to 5 minutes. A charge is consumed every time a damaging attack lands. The Glyph of Bone Shield will increase the number of charges to 6. It is worth noting that the cooldown begins when Bone Shield is cast, and not when the last bone is consumed.

    External Cooldowns
    In addition to each tank's innate cooldowns, several classes have cooldowns that can be placed on others:

    Divine Guardian is an ability that allows a paladin under Divine Shield to have 30% of all damage taken by party or raid members within 30 yards redirected to the Paladin. With patch 3.1, Divine Guardian will only absorb damage up to 300% of the Paladin's total health. You can reasonably expect around 50k-60k absorbtion on the tank, less in encounters with lots of AOE as the effect extends to all members of the paladin's raid.

    Guardian Spirit is a 10 second effect cast by a priest that increases the healing received by the target by 40%, and also prevents the target from dying by sacrificing itself. This sacrifice terminates the effect but heals the target of 50% of their maximum health.

    Hand of Sacrifice places a hand on a party member, transfering 30% damage taken to the caster for 12 seconds. Players may only have one Hand on them per Paladin at any one time.

    Lay on Hands heals its target for 100% of the caster's maximum health, on a 20-minute cooldown. With talents, it can be reduced to a 12-minute cooldown and also apply a 50% armor bonus for 15 seconds. Protection Paladins generally skip this talent as it requires them to sacrifice other talents, is still unreliable at a 12 minute cooldown, and is affected by Divine Plea's 50% healing done debuff (which is always active on a Protection Paladin).

    Pain Suppression instantly reduces a friendly target's threat by 5%, reduces all damage taken by 40% and increases resistance to Dispel mechanics by 65% for 8 seconds.

    Implications and Problems
    As illustrated above, there is a large selection of available emergency buttons, making it possible to chain cooldowns on different tanks in various scenarios within the current mechanics to allow them to survive to incredible levels of incoming damage. This presents a number of problems:
    • Some tank classes may become a clear choice for best chance of success, by the virtue of being able to survive better than the rest by simply having more abilities to reduce incoming damage available.
    • Those classes may become balanced around the assumption of those cooldowns, making their performance in the absence of them extremely subpar
    • Those tank classes become very restricted in choice of gear, talents, and glyphs in order to have best chance of success.
    • Some tank classes may not be able to come close enough to the ideal due to lack of abilities to keep the cooldown chain going
    • Non-tank classes may begin to feel obligated to take talents and glyphs that they might not otherwise choose to in order to support the cooldown chaining as best they can

    Thoughts and Solutions
    From this, we can take away several observations:

    Firstly, chaining cooldowns is detrimental to the game. Reducing encounters to be a case of simply chaining cooldowns together to keep a tank alive creates problems in encounter balance. A great deal of choice is taken away from a number of players in a raid in terms of how they gear, talent, and glyph to play.

    Second, not every class has sufficient cooldowns available to make the grade if chained cooldowns are present. It's fine and well to say "chained cooldowns are not necessary", but it's human nature to do what you can to make things easier.

    Third, chaining cooldowns probably may tend to force the development team into higher and higher amounts of burst damage to challenge the tank. This throws encounter balance significantly off, particularly for raids that may not necessarily have the "right" tank and support to get the chain of cooldowns.

    Some potential solutions present themselves to reduce the impact of cooldowns:
    • Debuffs similar to the Exhaustion or Forebearance debuff to prevent constant use of external cooldowns on tanks
    • Shared cooldowns on short cooldown emergency buttons
    • Examine the motivation behind short-cooldown emergency buttons, and whether they are in fact necessary
    • Increase the cooldown on emergency buttons so they are not chainable (3-4 minutes)
    • Consider internal cooldowns on non-triggered abilities
    In summary, the current ability to chain cooldowns together, potentially indefinitely, is simply a break in game mechanics waiting to be exploited to trivialise content. The ability to simply ignore an encounter's damage output in exchange for a tight rotation of cooldown abilities will remove challenge and fun from the encounters. This is by no means a call to bring on the nerfs to any particular class. Rather, this article is meant to highlight the problem with chained cooldowns and suggest potential ways to remove the ability to perform them. A likely fix would be to implement a debuff similar to the Forebearance mechanic to ensure that external cooldowns cannot be used to maintain an indefinite rotation. With that said, some tinkering within the tank classes may be inevitable. Of course, if cooldowns are changed for tank classes then compenstion in terms of health, mitigation, and/or avoidance may certainly be warranted to maintain balance.

    * Contributors to this Tanking Topic include: Devium, Dots, Guaritor, Hypatia, Jamor, Jere, Kojiyama/Jayde, Liar/Tyds, Lore, Satrina, Veneretio, Xav
    Last edited by Satrina; 03-04-2009 at 01:22 PM.
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    Q Why is Shield Block included in the list of emergency buttons again?
    A As explained in the text, in the right circumstance, Shield Block can be a very significant damage reducing ability - possibly up to 100%. Even if you're not in that sort of circumstance, the extra damage reduction can make a difference.

    Q Why isn't Intervene/Safeguard in there then?
    A Mainly because chopping 10% threat off of the tank every 30 seconds (assuming one Intervene only) isn't a very good idea at the best of times, not to mention have the chance of killing the Intervening warrior. Beyond that, if you don't have Safeguard then Intervene is a crap shoot whether it hits in time or not.

    Q Where did the 15-30% reduction numbers come from?
    A Assume 1500 BV x 2.4 (Shield Block+Glyph+Shield Mastery) = 3600 BV during Shield Block. 30% chance for a Critical Block makes the maximum 7200 BV. On bosses that hit for 50 000 (Malygos and other hard hitters in T7 content) to 100 000 damage (Hodir, possibly other hard hitters in T8 content) which averages out to the neighbourhood of 15-30% reduction on the hit you would have taken after armour and stance. Lower hits are not included for the fact that they will never have the chance to burst you down. Higher hits are not included because there is no currently known boss that hits harder than Hodir.

    Q What about the paladin Holy Shield - that's just like Shield Block!
    A Holy Shield is not included for its damage reduction function because it only reduces 5%-10% on bosses (Hodir and Malygos, respectively; 1500 BV assumed). Also, the Paladin has it up all the time anyway so it doesn't fit into the definition of a cooldown.

    Q Enraged Regeneration? Seriously?
    A Call it a political inclusion to try and stave off the cries of biased warriors trying to make warriors look worse off than they are.

    Q What's this about crushing blows? They were removed from the game!
    A Not removed, just promoted to mobs "4 levels higher". In any case, the point under discussion is Thorim's Unbalancing Strike attack (-200 defense skill). Here's how that factors into things:

    If nothing has changed, for every point of defense skill under the crushing blow cutoff point, you add 2% chance of being crushed. In TBC, you started with a 15% chance for a mob "+3 levels above you". However, testing showed that it wasn't actually the level difference that did it, but a differential of 15 between the boss' weapon skill (365 for 73) and your level maximum defense (350 for 70), so that was easy to figure. However, you can't have crushing blows at 400 defense these days as there are no 84 mobs. However, we're looking at a -200 defense penalty, which will drop you under that cutoff point. If we assume that "+4 levels" still really means "differential of 20 defense skill", then we reach the 15% base chance to crush when you are 20 points under the boss' weapon skill (415 for an 83) - at 395 defense. (It's possible that you get a base 20% chance at -20 defense skill rather than 15%, but that's neither here nor there as shown below.)

    Under that assumption, for your player starting at 540 defense and ending at 340, you would get to your initial 15% from the first 145 defense skill removed to get you to 395, leaving 110% chance to be crushed from the remaining 55 skill removed. As the combat table priority goes, your avoidance (and block) is preserved and any excess crush is discarded. You'd have only miss/dodge/parry/block/crush on the table, then.

    Q Won't Thorim's Unbalancing Strike really gimp Icebound Fortitude?
    A Yes. Unless you use the glyph.

    Q What is "moderate/high RP"?
    A Several Death Knight abilities cost runic power to activate. Contrast with the warrior abilities which are simply triggered and do not cost rage. While Divine Protection costs mana, and Frenzied Regeneration costs rage, a Death Knight will sometimes have to take a break from maximum threat rotation to "build up" the resources necessary for using cooldowns. Note that runic power is not as plentiful as rage is and, additionally, in a max threat rotation you're essentially spending it as fast as you get it. Add to this that some of the cooldowns also cost runes which have their own cooldowns. It's very possible, that you have a situation where you want to use your cooldown, but due to the demands of trying to retain threat you don't have the available resources, be it runes or runic power, to activate it.

    Q Isn't Divine Protection's cooldown 3 minutes now?
    Q Isn't Last Stand's cooldown 3 minutes now?
    Q Isn't X's cooldown Y minutes now?
    A We shall see if that sticks.

    Q No Death Knight gets all those cooldowns. Why not give sample specs?
    A We discussed exactly that. In the end, given the pages and pages of arguments of "nobody would do THAT" in previous tanking topics, we decided it would be less than more useful to the discussion. Besides which, I'm not sure we could have indicated more clearly that many Death Knight cooldowns are talent based as it is, between the text explanations and listing the various talent points for abilities.
    Last edited by Satrina; 03-05-2009 at 05:57 AM.
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    (just in case)
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    Is the active idea to focus exclusively on survival cooldowns, and leave threat/utility cooldowns for a future thread? (Avenging wrath for paladins, Berserk for druids, Berserker rage, revenge, etc. for warriors.)

    Also, LoH is ~not~ affected by Divine Plea's healing penalty

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    Given the discussion on the Ulduar testing, this kind of topic came about, so yeah it is mostly geared towards cooldowns for survival in progression raiding. Threat cooldowns might also be a good discussion at some point though.

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    You included Ardent Defender, but omitted Will of the Necropolis?

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    Playing a bit of devil's advocate here, what is wrong with trivializing content for a group of extremely practiced individuals? For a high end raiding guild, wouldn't it provide them a bit more fun to be forced to chain CDs to be successful? Perhaps encouraging higher level raid content for these types of people that casual gamers don't get to participate. If the chaining of CDs was to be promoted then I think there could be some interesting things that could be done (think of things like the combat 'wheel' in EQ2).

    Now as a side note, I do agree that trivializing content by chaining cool downs is broken. You essentially by pass the experience of a fight and throw strategy out the window when the circumstances as mentioned occur. The counter to my argument above is of course, the high end raiding guilds represent a small, very small, populace of WoW and is therefore uneconomical for Bliz and exclusive to the normal raiders.
    Last edited by Khue; 03-04-2009 at 12:49 PM. Reason: Clarification of some points.
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    Well put, I think most people agree on the things pointed out here and hopefully we'll see some changes.

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    I am personally for the debuff suggestion, possibly a debuff with DR on the CD or maybe increased boss damage negating the CD after so many CD's have been used in the specified time period. The only problem with the debuff method is if predictable burst doesn't hit the CD limit, this would obviously have to be taken into consideration in boss design.


    Also although not a big deal but why was ardent defender included but not WotN.

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    Ghostcrawler said, "When cooldown tank abilities have too long a cooldown they don't get used because you tend to save them for emergencies."

    To me, that was always the point of cool downs like shield wall. If one of your healers died, then you had an "oh, crap" button to help keep you alive until another person could step in or someone combat rezzed the healer. I liked having it there for that, and I really hate that Blizzard is trending towards having cool downs be something you need to chain to survive the bursts.

    I have to point out the effect of having short duration cool downs would have on other parts of the game, such as heroics. If tanks can have a 40% mitigation cooldown available for nearly every trash pull, it is going to make the 5 man game even more of a joke. Even if harder heroics are released, why ever bother with CC when the dps can just focus fire a mob or 2 down while the tank is using their cooldowns.

    Is Blizzard really out of ideas for ways to make encounters difficult without virtually requiring the chaining of cool downs? Chaining cool downs is not fun for me, so I sure hope they can find some inspiration.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alent View Post
    You included Ardent Defender, but omitted Will of the Necropolis?
    Will of the necropolis should definitly be there as it might be one of the strongest abilities dk's have against tank killing blows.

    After seeing xav's tests my first thought was that healer's cd's should be remade like how heroism works now to prevent excessive cd chaining.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Alent View Post
    Is the active idea to focus exclusively on survival cooldowns, and leave threat/utility cooldowns for a future thread? (Avenging wrath for paladins, Berserk for druids, Berserker rage, revenge, etc. for warriors.)

    Also, LoH is ~not~ affected by Divine Plea's healing penalty
    It is on the PTR, I think.
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    Quote Originally Posted by nips View Post
    Will of the necropolis should definitly be there as it might be one of the strongest abilities dk's have against tank killing blows.

    After seeing xav's tests my first thought was that healer's cd's should be remade like how heroism works now to prevent excessive cd chaining.
    I agree.

    In fact, I am strongly outraged by WotN, as a paladin, because it's everything I wish Ardent Defender was- AD gets leapfrogged in an instant in situations like Sartharion breath.

    It's the best automatic panic button you never get to use when it counts.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Alent View Post
    You included Ardent Defender, but omitted Will of the Necropolis?

    Are either actually cooldowns? I know WotN isn't. I though AD was but looking at the ability on wowhead it appears to have no internal CD either.

    Don't know if this is the place to get into the power of those abilities unless its in the context of having some other CD active during their triggering.

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    I personally think the game would be more fun if every tank had just about one cooldown they could use in serious "Oh crap"-situations. That's what they were called before Death Knights came along anyway, I remember WotLK beta notes on TankSpot referring to the availability for "Oh crap" or "Oh shit" buttons to all tanks.
    I'd rather see the tanks each have one cooldown to save their lives, and other cooldowns to save tanks to be saved for healer classes. That would make their lives a lot more interesting, and probably more fun that just spamming their heals, allowing for more complex healing decisions. If they were talents that were naturally picked up at the bottom end of the healing trees, that would make sure they wouldn't gimp a healer's overall performance by picking these up, but instead providing them a different tool to accomplish their task (keeping people alive). It would also keep them out of reach for DPS players, thus not forcing the raid to spec in odd ways to provide the necessary cooldowns.

    That's just a different design that I'd like more, I think. I agree with the opening post and I think the debuff system would be a good fix, but perhaps a bit band-aid (which is good, because it's the only thing Blizzard will implement now, and not for the next expansion).
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    Quote Originally Posted by nips View Post
    After seeing xav's tests my first thought was that healer's cd's should be remade like how heroism works now to prevent excessive cd chaining.
    I don't even think addressing healer CD's alone will absolve this issue as even just tank chain cooldowning(that can't be a word) still has game trivializing effects in predictable burst damage (especially spell burst) fights. Blizzard bas to design fights such that CD's to should be used at specfic times or they don't. You can't have a reasonably balanced fight where tank A/raid A can use Cd's at all high damage points and while tank B/Raid B can't. Otherwise progression will be marked by class limitations.

    Wherein the assumption is made that Raid A and Raid B are both reasonablly balanced.
    Last edited by Ipick; 03-04-2009 at 01:30 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lore View Post
    It is on the PTR, I think.
    I just logged into PTR and tested. I have 27114 hp, I cast divine plea, I LoH'd myself for 26436.

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    I am having a hard time formulating an opinion on this subject.

    On one hand, I am not enthused by tanking progressively being moved into a set of keystrokes, cylcling through cooldowns that simply seem somewhat detatched from the basic core of the class. This may be central to Death knight tanking, what their class was built upon but it doesn't sit well with other tanking classes to have Blizzard introduce a new class with new game play mechanics, decide that they like the way it works then convert the traditional tanking classes to mimic it.

    On the other hand, the idea of taking an active role in reducing incoming damage is intriguing. In BC, we were forced to build threat. SB was so integral in our rotations that it was standard, not something you thought about, you just did it. Other than that, you went with what you had, your gear selection/acquisition/customization (all pre-combat concerns) and the healers take care of the rest on the damage reduction/survival front front. Factor in 'oh crap' buttons in there.

    I am concerned with the implementation if this goes through. It makes a glyph 'required' to a much greater degree than others I have experience with across several different character classes. Glyphs, I was given to understand were an avenue to further character customization. Much like the rationale GC gave for the removal of the +75 stamina to weapon enchant, a glyph of shield wall will be necassary to compete and contrary to Blizzard's stated goals.

    As Nips said above, Blizzard has taken steps to thwart to practice of CD chaining by placing debuffs and long CDs on things like Heroism/(err...Horde equivalent).

    Just some thoughts. I'm not an expert, just an opinionated commentator. I don't really want to see warriors, the class I play, be pushed into chaining CD's together as a matter of standard procedure but like all other things, I would adapt and handle it.
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    I am going to copy/paste a reply I wrote on the public wow forums about this, with the quote. It also heavily deals with what Horacio said:

    Doesn't that just emphasize a certain element of skill now required for tanking other than afking in front of a boss watching tv while spamming your rotation hot keys?
    Sort of, this is actually another possible tangent topic which is getting popular.

    The problem with thinking this is okay, is that they may have to tune around it. And tuning around chaining cooldowns is even more rigid than ever. You're going to need 3-4 people in the raid specced a certain way, as well as your tank specced and glyphed a certain way, to keep up a cooldown rotation near-indefinitely.

    If they then tune around that (so you can't just trivialize all tank checks), everyone else does not stand a chance (not to mention, some classes are just horrible for it!)

    It is true, though, that reactive cooldowns a tank can press rather than a threat rotation forever can be fun. This unfortunately leads in to the old warrior bias where the tank could hit a button to increase their survivability on a fight drastically: Spell Reflect, Berserker Rage to break fears so you aren't gibbed/wipe, Shield Block for shear, etc.

    The cooldown mentality briefly shifted, though, to give every tank several short "ultra" cooldowns, which then create this chain-cooldown problem as being realistic.

    Finally, I think with the introduction of new, challenging raid content, a tank will be able to do more than just mash a threat rotation indefinitely, but they'll have to respond to the environment, move around more, and do more than they're used to. (This is why Sartharion is fun as a drake or adds tank, because there's so much to react to rather than simply the mob in your face).

    Requiring tanks to simultaneously juggle two independant rotations - a full threat rotation, and a full survivability cooldown rotation, AS WELL as the environment/raid around them, could just get extremely involved, more than ever before.

    I think "big" cooldowns being on a 3-4 minute timer is a nice sweet spot that allows tanks to use things reactively in the fight to relieve stress or save a wipe, but not encourage or enable the dangerous linking of permanent cooldowns.
    Xav
    Formerly Xavastrasz
    Quote Originally Posted by Rak View Post
    control+c control+v amirite?
    Quote Originally Posted by Magnuss View Post
    Hell no, its Xav, he is gonna type that bitch till his fingers fall off.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    116
    I am going to transplant some of my posts from Xav's 2nd post if you don't mind. It is applicable here and saves me typing...

    Here is a pre-face... About 500 DKs came on the thread and started screaming not to nerf them. That's not the point. We don't want to see DKs unuseable as tanks, but most of us who have thought it through really dislike the idea of just spamming 1 ability after another on 20 second CDs as part of our mitigation rotation. Much more fun to judge when to use the SW/Divine Prot to save a wipe and when not to use it because a heal is gonna land in time.

    Why do DKs get the focus? Well... you saw all the CDs. They just have a much higher capability of keeping a CD up 100% of the time then any other tanking class.

    So, DKs screaming foul, data showing a broken mechanic...


    1st.

    "Have you ever seen a gear side-grade? Where you look at a piece of loot and it has more of this one stat you really want... but by putting it on you would lose alot of some other stat that you want?

    That is exactly what DKs need. A side-grade.

    The CD chaining potential is just too high to be ignored, but their damage intake is a bit high when no CD is up. Increase baseline survivabilty through perhaps a stance modifier or something along those lines while lengthening the CDs on IBF, VB and perhaps others. One DK asked earlier what do you then do about PvP survivability. Perhaps remove some of the armor modifier in Frost or even just do a slight HP reduction (DK tanks when specced for progression currently are high) as a Damage Modifier would be making up for the lost mitigation or EH."


    2nd.

    "I noticed the new PTR changes on MMO-champ list Last Stand as a 1.5min CD now. It really seems like Blizz isn't getting the whole Cooldown chaining issue anymore than about 80% of the DKs in this thread are. Any idea if Druids are getting new short CDs? If we are expected to chain, might as well start planning for it... >_> This is what happens when instead of nerfing 1 class, blizz buffs all comparable specs. We all are then expected to use a broken mechanic to down bosses. Do people not understand that?

    Another issue looking to the future, if Shield Wall, Last Stand, Divine Prot and Barkskin all work their way into a standard mitigation rotation with bosses being tuned with this in mind... What happens when bosses get new, bigger abilities to challenge the tank (even with a CD up constantly)? We then would need new, even bigger CDs to pop reactively rather than preemptively on a timer. Interesting eh?

    [Super Shield Wall]
    Reduces all damage by 80% for 30 seconds. The Warrior's health is also increase by 50% for the duration. 1 hour cooldown.


    This is the future..."

    Those are my thoughts and concerns. Sorry about the wall, been workin this issue for days already.
    Paladin --- "A paragon of chivalry; a heroic champion."
    <Journey> is recruiting, visit www.wowjourney.com for information and class needs.

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