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Thread: Tips on holding threat against better geared DPS

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2009

    Tips on holding threat against better geared DPS

    Hi guys,

    I newly dinged 80, have tanked a few 5mans from 70-80, but on the whole am new to tanking

    I did some research when I hit level 80, decided to go with blood spec tank as I leveled as blood, thought this would be an easier way to get into tanking if the abilities where mostly familiar.

    Today I ran my first two heroics with some helpful guildie's (all of them regulars on our guilds raid team and vastly better geared than I). To my dismay I discovered I could not hold aggro against one of the DPS who is full tiered and does a (compared to the other DPS in the group) high amount of DPS.

    No matter what I tried (death grip, taunt, beating the mob to a bloody pulp) I always held a tentative grip on the mobs with them ready to run and mow down the poor DPS...twice I needed to be battle-rezzed with the warlock tanking the mobs till i was back up :S (very shameful I know )

    Here is my armoury link
    The World of Warcraft Armory

    and here is a link to my spec and glyphs (as armoury still shows my bad pre-80 glyphs)

    Talent Calculator - World of Warcraft

    I suspect this issue is mostly to do with either; lack of practice, gearing or spec tweaks required, however in the meantime as I gain more experience, can any of you more experienced tanks give me some tips please on how I can generate more threat and maintain aggro against superiorly geared players?

    Thanks in advance

  2. #2
    I tried to level as a blood tank and found it wanting...I went Frost during wrath content and never looked back. Found that it holds great AOE and single target threat up through naxx content.

    Rotation: DnD, Glyphed howling blast and a blood boil holds aggro against most AOE, and frost/rune strikes hold against the main target.

    To help in general, I would mark targets. Keybind Skull, X, and Star so they are quick and easy to put up. Tell the dps that although you can and will make AOE threat, the order is to be respected...if they pull X with single target dps while skull is up, let them die.

    Ask for help when you are gearing and not able to pump out full threat. Rogues and Hunters may be more than willing to make the game a lil more interesting for themselves with Tricks of the Trade and MD if you ask politely.

    Also bear in mind: Some dps simply must use threat drops. Hunters are guilty of making tanks sweat all the time b/c they dont want to blow a global cooldown on FD... let them die once and they wont do it again.

    Happy Tanking

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2009
    College Station
    Flat out: You need better gear. You will need to run regular 80 dungeons first to get the blues that give you stats to survive heroics, then you start the easy heroics.

    Steps you can take immediately:

    1. Replace dark command glyph with Rune Strike. RS is your aggro bread and butter.

    2. Change bracer enchant to stam. as much as I like 15 ER, almost 500 hp is better.

    3. Gem for expertise/stamina. Parry is not worth gemming for and parry on gear isn't worth it unless it will actually increase your avoidance.

    That should give immediate help. You can check gear guides here or on wowinsider's Lichborne column. He has a fresh 80 gear guide.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    You don't really need the spell deflection, imo I would get the rest of Rune tap, it really helps with keeping yourself up and healing also creates more threat.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Hi again guys,

    well I have been running heroics and getting geared, and have actually stepped in to offtank our guilds Naxx's runs.

    I also respecced to frost which seems to be working out better for me. I've been playing with my gems and glyphs. Switched out my parry gems for strength/expertise, then switched those gems for hit gems lol. I also tried switching my Dark Command glyph out for Rune Strike then found my taunt was missing 75% of the time.... :S put the glyph back in and worked on my hit heaps.

    I seem to be able to hold aggro against a group of mobs adequately. However I am struggling to build up enough threat against single target mobs....

    I got asked to Main Tank Sapph last night in 10man Naxx, as the other tank has a much better DPS set than I.

    My rotation on a single target mob is; IT, PS, DND, OB till Killing Machine procs (Frost strike) or Rune Strike procs.

    So I start tanking the dragon, and then have it ripped off me by a hunter... dragon turns around eats said hunter, breaths over the entire raid, cleaves a few people, then as I'm frantically trying to drag her back into position she tail swipes the raid for good measure.

    Thankfully only the hunter got killed (thank you heals ><) and from then on I managed to hold aggro with no issues.

    This is pretty much the scenario whenever I am tanking a single mob.... Loatheb, Sapph, the adds on Anub'Rekhan, and I'm getting pretty tired of watching my mob disappear into the raid.

    Is this a case of bad dps not using their threat-reducing abilities? or should I just give up and roll DPS ><

    My partner who plays a prot warrior and has been tanking since vanilla, assures me that it happens to every tank occasionally just that some have more experience to deal with it and that I shouldnt give up...

    So, do I need to change my rotation? is there something that will give me more threat faster against a single mob?


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    There's something very wrong with your taunt missing 75% of the time. Unglyphed (and without virulence) Dark Command has a 17% chance to miss. That's why the glyph gives you 8% to bring it down to match your melee attacks at 9%. If you were missing 75%, you were either affected by DR, or doing something strange.

    About your rotation, don't bother with DnD for single target tanking, it's not worth the 3 runes, and you need to use Blood Strike to transform your blood runes into death runes for an extra obliterate on your next round. FS only if you have more than 50 RP. Don't forget to use Deatchill on your OB and BT for an extra BS. So your rotation would look like this: IT-PS-(death chill)OB-BS-BS-(blood tap)BS--(FS Dumps)--OB-OB-OB.

    Make sure you have a way of spotting your KM and Rime procs (I use SBF, but you can also use ghostulse to get flashy icons, or MSBT to get it as a text announcement). Use FS when KM procs and HB when Rime procs.

    Also, macro RS to all your abilities, so you don't have to worry about it. For instance, your Obliterate macro would look like this:
    #show Obliterate
    /cast Obliterate
    /cast !Rune Strike
    Do the same for all your primary tanking abilities (IT, PS, BS, BB, HB, OB, etc), and you won't have to worry about RS anymore.

    Your spec looks fine, but the UA glyph is a PvP glyph. Try the glph of RS or FS instead.

    I also noticed you have the glyph of HB, with the glyph of HB some people like to skip PS or run with a rotation like this: (Deathchill)HB-OB-BS-BS-(blood tap)PSorBS--FS Dump--OB,OB,OB. The advantage of this rotation is that you can HB as you run in, and it helps building a lot of threat from the start. The disadvantage is that you can't really be refreshing PS smoothly unless you use blood tap, so you'll probably end up sacrificing one disease.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Oh, and I suggest taking those points from merciless combat and icy talons and putting them into Glacier Rot. Glacier Rot is HUGE for threat, especially with the glyph of HB.

  8. #8
    I've tried several Frost variations trying to maximize threat, and currently prefer this 15/51/5 one.

    Glacier Rot is mandatory, especially in combination with Glyph of Howling Blast.

    You can move the two points in Merciless Combat elsewhere, like Deathchill and 5/5 Killing Machine if you want. I go back and forth on that one. The 5th point in KM only marginally increases the proc rate over 4/5 KM, but Deathchill is immensely useful (start roughly 2 out every 3 pulls with a crit HB threat spike).

    With Glyph of HB you don't need Epidmic. Normal diseases last 15s, and HB cd is only 8s, shorter when Rime procs. On AoE pulls, lay down a DnD and spam HB + BB whenever HB is up (will get some Oblits in there too while HB on cd) till only one mob left, then switch to Oblit + BS for final mob.

    Frost doesn't absolutely require Blood Plague (only Oblit benefits from it by about 11.5% iirc, and you can glyph Oblit for +20% extra dmg), so you can get away skipping Plague Strike and Pestilence completely and just relying glyphed HB to keep up Frost Fever (not necessarily when MT'ing a raid boss, but definitely in heroics).

    Even though spell hit cap is 17%, I haven't had any problems without 3/3 Virulence with just ~7% hit rating. Gem for more hit, and drop Virulence.

    Bladed Armor, at least 2/3 Scent of Blood, and 2/2 2H Weapon Spec are imho necessities for threat. Bladed Armor will give around +700 AP, which buffs strikes, spells, diseases, and white dmg - every dmg/threat ability a DK has, and that stacks with Glacier Rot, Tundra Stalker, Merciless Combat, 2H weapon spec, etc. No-brainer.

    SoB + Chill of the Grave will let you spam enough Frost Strikes even without the Glyph of FS and with autocasting macro'd Rune Strikes. And 2H Weapon Spec for a 2H tanking class, speaks for itself.

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