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Thread: Comprehensive Guide to Death Knight Tanking

  1. #261
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    Quote Originally Posted by mysteryhordetank View Post
    satorri-sensei, you got a link to some info about dpsing in the different trees?
    http://www.tankspot.com/showthread.p...%28FR-BL-UH%29
    Krenian does very good work.

    Just to be clear though, whatever guides you may take your info from, I *highly* recommend that you just take the info as a stepping off point. The best thing a guide can offer you is insight into things that may not be patently clear on the surface (i.e. +5% dmg is great, but how does that compare to +5% crit or +5% haste?), but at the end of the day, to become the best player you can, you should understand your choices for yourself and be able to tailor them intelligently.
    The (Old) Book on Death Knight Tanking
    The New Testament on Death Knight Tanking
    -----------------------------------------
    Quote Originally Posted by Horacio View Post
    Who f-ing divided by zero?!?

  2. #262
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    Quote Originally Posted by Satorri View Post
    I went out and used my trusty Pustulent Horrors (on the ICC ramparts). As soon as I got a proc I spun around and put my back to the target so I couldn't dodge/parry to refresh the proc.
    Heh.. those are my favorite "tank" target dummies

  3. #263
    I just have to say thank you Satorri! your guide helped me out in figuring out all of the mechanics of a deathknight tank and really helped me get started with mine. Now im Mt'ing Icc 10 for my guild and i still check back here every now and again. Im kinda sad i never got to do ulduar, but by the time i decided i wanted to use a dk tank it was already ToC time, and no one wanted to play in uldy anymore.

    I cant wait to see whats in store when 3.3.3 hits, im in love with the WotN change. I dont think it will be gamebreaking, but paired with the buff to icy touch threat, I think people will be a little less quick to chalk Dk tanks up as noobs. Hopefully anyway lol.

    But anyway... I was wondering what your take on the the change to WotN is? Do you think that it will be worth taking in most raid situations? I know a lot of people dont take the talent now, but i do and i'd love to start seeing a bit more use out of it.

  4. #264
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    There is a very long thread about that, but I can boil it down here. When the changes go live I will be fixing up details in the guide itself.

    WotN is a good talent, there's no mystery there. In truth, I don't think the change will be game-breaking (if it is, it won't make it live). That said I do think it is a valuable buff to the talent. It frees it to be more meaningful than it already is. Right now it is a one-shot chance at surviving a hit that would drop you in the danger zone, a clinch save. Removing the CD allows for two important things:

    1.) You cannot waste it now. Previously, while it was rare, you could have it proc off a 3k hit for a tiny effect (450 dmg saved) and then suffer the 15 sec ICD with low health. Now not only will it affect smaller hits, but it will continue to reduce damage taken when your health is low.

    2.) The missing ICD functionally inflates the value of our health below 35% by ~17.6% meaning the health we are already stacking for our many other effects is now even more helpful for making us hard to kill when our health drops. One of the few vulnerabilities of Blood tanking is that it does not have the added mitigation of Frost or Unholy. We always just rested on being more heal-able when it really hurts. This gives us a guaranteed mitigation when our health is low.

    So, do I think it is worth taking? Yes. But generally only for the situations where you are expecting your health to drop (ICC is an easy give here). If you over-gear the content you're running I really don't think you'll miss it, but you will love having it when you need it.
    The (Old) Book on Death Knight Tanking
    The New Testament on Death Knight Tanking
    -----------------------------------------
    Quote Originally Posted by Horacio View Post
    Who f-ing divided by zero?!?

  5. #265
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    So I keep seeing all kinds of information about the 20% increase to DnD with the 2 piece T10 bonus.
    I haven't seen much discussion on the 4 piece T10 bonus. It looks to me that this bonus simply gives us another "Oh Sh**" button with the use of Blood Tap. Is this something to be looked into? Or is this not necessarily worth going for? I'm not too sure about the math behind 12% damage reduction for 10 seconds, and if it's worth picking up; or worth skipping an upgrade in the chest/shoulder/legs/feet/gloves department, in order to accommodate for this.
    I typically find myself combining Rune Tap (to free up a rune) with Vamp Blood; perhaps the 4 piece was designed with that specifically in mind (I'm guessing I'm not the only one who does that combination of BT + VB).

  6. #266
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    Dealer's choice.

    Personally I wouldn't let it change the way I use Blood Tap since I use it highly for function. I see it more as a utility to provide intermittent protection when you do use Blood Tap. If you don't use it currently (I'm a little surprised if that is the case), then you could easily start using it as an off-GCD protection ability.
    The (Old) Book on Death Knight Tanking
    The New Testament on Death Knight Tanking
    -----------------------------------------
    Quote Originally Posted by Horacio View Post
    Who f-ing divided by zero?!?

  7. #267
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    4p t10 is really just designed for the Lich King encounter. I haven't run across any other hardmodes that I want my t10 bonus for. That being said, at ilvl277 the t10 is better than offset gear.

    Go with the offset stuff unless you can get to icc25 hardmode.

  8. #268
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    Right. That's kind of what I was wondering.

    I've spent the last couple months building up my DPS set for ICC, but our guild is short tanks, so I switched to tanking; and haven't had time to get enough badges to get really much of the tank gear from the vendors or T10; so I have been looking up what the best choice is. So for now at least I should just shoot for the 2 piece.

    I picked up the shoulders from the Gunship battle last night, and wasn't sure if I should be saving badges and not worry about getting gear for the rest of my tier slots.

    Thanks for the info.

  9. #269
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    only one little thing i have found out with strenght

    I have come to find out that you actually are getting ~2.1AP/1Strength with my JC. I know this does not make much of a difference but if you are a JC it can beef up a Bold Dragon's Eye which is 34Strenght-> 71.4AP as opposed to a Bright Dragon's Eye which is granting +68AP.
    Other than that this is a freakin awesome guide.
    Thank you for putting so much great effort into this =)

  10. #270
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    only one little thing i have found out with strength

    i have come to find out that you actually are getting ~2.1AP/1Strength which isnt much of a difference but if you are a JC it can make your JC special jems alot more powerful. Other than that tis is a freakin awesome guide. Thank you for putting so much great effort into this =)

  11. #271
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    Quote Originally Posted by wallaceoleoieo View Post
    i have come to find out that you actually are getting ~2.1AP/1Strength which isnt much of a difference but if you are a JC it can make your JC special jems alot more powerful. Other than that tis is a freakin awesome guide. Thank you for putting so much great effort into this =)
    No. 1 Strength = 2 AP. Period. You can prove this by unlearning your talents and swapping out a single piece of gear with strength.

    That said, there are strength modifiers in most talent builds that will increase the value of strength for AP equivalency. The typical blood tanking build will have modifiers for 8% more strength. With that modification, every point of strength on a piece of gear, becomes 1.08 points of strength or 2.16 AP on your stat sheet.

  12. #272
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    man satorri sensei, when i look back at this guide i'm still amazed at the depths you went. great stufff

    i checked out the guide by the fellow you recomended, quite interesting stuff, and definitely a good introduction to grasping the basic about the numbers beihind things, and basic knowledge most people should know.

    thanks again for you help man. it's been a pleasure

  13. #273
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    Hi there, my DK just got her second piece of t10 but right now I'm DW Frost (dwarf with dual maces from HoR) so generally asking is it a good idea to respec into Morbidity (probably taking points from BotN or Rime) to support DnD or should I try to get a solid 2h (only doing 5mans and weekly so best would probably be the polearm from HoR) and respec Blood/Unholy or should I just not care and take it as a nice bonus for aoe tanking?
    With the maces I'm at the expertise softcap but I could probably get there with the polearm too by socketing expertise/stam in red as the t10 legs give a crapload of expertise. At elitistjerks I read a post about an all purpose DnD tanking spec that used a frost build with GoDnD but I'm skeptical so does anyone here have experience with it?
    Again as I mentioned I only do 5mans and the weekly raid, so gear availability is limited to stuff you can buy with emblems or craft (or drops from 5mans) but that also means that I don't need a spec for icc hardmodes etc. Thanks for any replies and sorry if this has already been discussed but I looked at the last 5 or so pages and couldn't find a solution to my problem.


  14. #274
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    Quote Originally Posted by Satorri View Post
    Dealer's choice.

    Personally I wouldn't let it change the way I use Blood Tap since I use it highly for function. I see it more as a utility to provide intermittent protection when you do use Blood Tap. If you don't use it currently (I'm a little surprised if that is the case), then you could easily start using it as an off-GCD protection ability.
    I agree with this for most situations, but the ways I use blood tap as it is lend themselves to the bonus rather well. In single target pulls I use blood tap to activate unbreakable armor. This is generally win win with the 4 piece bonus. In aoe pulls I generally use blood tap to get a blood boil off in my first black out.... this happens to coincide with the time period where the largest number of mobs happen to be alive and hitting me, and with the addition of the 4 piece... turns out to be a great time to get the damage reduction. I am not sure if all personal ways of using blood tap line up this well, but in my case the set bonus correlates really nicely with the style I had before I had it.

    Edit: from time to time there may be strategic reasons to use it as a stand alone cool down, such as a blood tank alternating between Vampiric Blood and Blood Tap on LK.
    Last edited by Nephelai; 03-12-2010 at 03:01 PM.

  15. #275
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    Hello. i was jus wondering is DnD is essential for getting aggro on multiple targets. because everytime i use it it seems to mess up my rotation and i get a premature GCD. Any help on this would be great

  16. #276
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcclaranboy View Post
    Hello. i was jus wondering is DnD is essential for getting aggro on multiple targets. because everytime i use it it seems to mess up my rotation and i get a premature GCD. Any help on this would be great
    While I know alot of Frost specced tanks avoid using it entirely, it can be used effectively in any spec, but because of its cost, its use as an opener should be built around an opener designed to take into account its rune cost. Even, then, the fact that you are burning 3 runes in one gcd will create a longer blackout between your first and second rune set. You just have to trust that the use of the resource (those three runes) was more efficient for threat generation then anything you could have done with the gcd's you lost. Most opening rotations with D&D consist of some variation of using

    DnD, IT, PS, Pest, or DnD, HB, BT, PS, Pest

    or something similar, in the first rune set.

    If I personally am using a D&D pull in frost I often start with something like

    DnD, IT, PS, Pest, BT, BB... take a breath... HB

    This lacks the snap of an HB opener, but there are many situations where I just like the cummulative benefits of this aoe opener.

    Also there are situations where mid fight where you know that soon it will be advantageous to get a D&D out (like picking up worms on VD when an Abomb dies). In these situations your best bet (since you can't use ERW every time) is to anticipate the need and back off rune burning a few seconds before its time to drop.

    In short, using it in any capacity just involves knowing its cost and planning a runeset around it. How you do this can change from situation to situation depending on what other resources you have available, and what else you plan on doing with those other gcd's

  17. #277
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    I saw on the ptr, that glyph of icebound fortitude will now always grant 40% reduction. Think this will be a necessity now? I am currently a blood tank, and I love it!

  18. #278
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    If you're tanking, Icebound fortitude already gives you 40% reduction. The base amount is increased by defense rating, such that if you're crit capped, it's giving you something like 50% reduction (I do not remember the exact numbers).

    The glyph is for PvP, do not use it for tanking.

  19. #279
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    Two quick answers to questions above:

    IBF increases damage reduction based on your Defense. The glyph only increases the minimum damage reduction, not the baseline that defense builds from, and it has always been balanced to be less than what your defense would give you at the uncrittable point. As such it is a PvP glyph only and will have no benefit to a tank who is appropriately geared to be tanking anything serious.

    DnD is a fairly simple design, so rather than answering the many specific questions (again), I'll just paint a picture of how it is built.

    DnD is a small damage tick for a 10 sec duration, ticking once per second and on a base 30 sec CD (33% uptime if used on CD). It costs 3 runes, one of each and lasts the duration of the rune cooldowns. The damage ticks are small but they recieve a 1.9x additional threat multiplier. This means that it will do much more threat than it will damage. The ability has been fairly intelligently balanced.

    If you are looking at raw threat gains, only Unholy can actually make DnD worth using on a single target with the 2pc t10 bonus *and* the glyph, Frost and Blood even with both will have preferable alternatives for single target threat, and without either (glyph or set bonus) DnD is never the best tool against a single target even with its threat multiplier. On group pulls the ability can be quality threat for picking everything up, especially for Blood which generally lacks in fast AoE threat. Frost has the strongest tools to pull AoE threat against groups thanks to HB and the functionality of Tundra Stalker. Unholy will have the most powerful DnD but will naturally take most of the talents to benefit it anyway.

    Morbidity, for consideration, shaves 5/10/15 sec off the cooldown. That means you bump the uptime for repeat casts to 40/50/67% uptime. At 3/3 that means you only have 5 sec at a time where you don't have DnD down. The interpretation is that Morbidity is only of value of you are re-casting DnD. If you want to use it to round up a group, you do not need Morbidity. This is a common practice with Frost to help cement group threat at the start of a large pull. Drop DnD, HB, and BB and you have a nice foundation to work from. The other half of the talent (and as such, the budget) is an increase in DC damage. This is fine for Blood, and strong for Unholy, but it is a complete waste for Frost. To that end, I never recommend DnD in a Frost build, though it is not uncommon to see DK tanks who spec for 5-mans to take a Frost build with Morbidity since they *are* actually only using it once per pull, but the pulls are paced quickly enough that they would be waiting on the DnD CD if they didn't. I wouldn't recommend this for any sort of raiding spec, but I can understand it in a 5-man-centric build.

    So the TL;DR version:
    Blood = DnD on group pulls is great, 3+ targets and it will make your life easier. You may not need to recast it on CD but it can be worth your while to cast it more than once so Morbidity isn't wasted. Never worth it on single targets, and probably not worth glyphing unless you are the only tank and really uncomfortable with AoE threat. If that is the case I'd recommend carrying it with a stack of one of your other glyphs so you can swap back for any boss fights.

    Frost
    = DnD is nice, and can support the bursty nature of HB for aoe threat at the start of the fight. It is not usually worth casting mid-fight however as it really suppresses Frost's tree mechanics with OB/HB/Rime/BotN etc. With set bonus *and* DnD it can rival or ever-so-slightly surpass your standard operation for raw threat, but that is without accounting for RP generation, the power of FS, and effective use of your GCDs. To that end, I would recommend not glyphing or using it on single targets, but instead sticking with your normal operation. Generally I think it is a waste to glyph it as Frost with all the other delightful alternatives.

    Unholy = DnD is a powerful tool for Unholy, combined with diseases it makes for a very strong AoE threat tool, generally worth using on 2+ targets. You will normally get Morbidity comfortably in your spec and it is worth using on CD against large groups (assuming things live that long). Getting the set bonus is more than enough to support that, if you choose to support it with the glyph DnD becomes your AoE powerhouse for threat. With those tools you can also make it worth using on single targets on raw threat. That said you may find it makes your job a bit boring as you will frequently be sitting around on rune blackouts with little to do.
    The (Old) Book on Death Knight Tanking
    The New Testament on Death Knight Tanking
    -----------------------------------------
    Quote Originally Posted by Horacio View Post
    Who f-ing divided by zero?!?

  20. #280
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    Hey there, read the whole post(s), especially the part about Frost. I'm currently leveling 3 DK's as I have friends on 3 different servers and I figure the fastest way to get up to where I can play with them is as a DK tank. All 3 are frost spec using 2-handers. I'm trying to digest as many forums on this topic as I can and this one, along with the EJ forums, is a real gem.

    However, wherever I look I cannot find a really good post on leveling as a DK tank. Leveling as a DK dps spec I can find quite a few good threads. DK tank leveling I cannot. I realize that leveling as dps through questing is by far the fastest way to go but as a DK I'm trying to tank instances as well to get emblems and good gear and such as I level. Probably for the reason I just stated nobody wants to waste their time on writing a good article on tank leveling because not a lot of people would find benefit out of it? I don't know.

    I'm wondering if you can point me to a good/trusted article on leveling as a DK tank.

    I've got 2 of them pretty much done with all the BC instances, and am not finding much difficulty with Utgarde Keep and the Nexus (my highest level DK is level 71), but I'm basically trying to apply all the information I find for level 80 DK's to my level 68/71 DK's. For example, all of the slotted gear that I find I'm putting defense gems in because I'm supposed to be at 540 defense or something like that. I'm sure I don't need to have that much at level 71 but I don't know how much I should have at what level and so forth. Also, I've been using this Vengeance Blade of the Champion: http://www.wowhead.com/?item=25160#comments
    Even though I picked up Terokk's Quill http://www.wowhead.com/?item=29329 from the Sethekk Halls quest. The sword has all these nice stats on it including Defense and so on, but the Quill doesn't have that. But because the DPS is better on the Quill should I be using that anyways?

    It's questions like that that I wish I could find a good/trusted guide to leveling as a DK tank. Can you point me in the right direction? Or can I basically apply everything you're saying here to my leveling tank?

    Thanks for any input. Excellent information.

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