Tanking technique (And some gear questions) - Warrior
Hello. I've recently started tanking as a warrior and has some questions about the technique.
I mostly open up with a charge or heroic throw and then do a shield slam. If I think I need more aggro I do a Mocking blow. Then I stack up 5 sunders and go on with my rotation:
HS - SS - Rev - Devestate (Occasionally a concussion blow). If I tank more than one mob I change HS to Cleave and spam Thunderclap as well as Shockwave. On a boss I do mostly the same as the first one but I put in Thunderclap too. I also put Vigilance on the highest threat DPS.
Is this the right way to do it? Is there some abilities that I've forgot about and should use? The most trouble I have ATM is to keep aggro against high DPSes (4k+) on AoE tanking.
As for the gear, when I hit 540 Defense (I am at 557 now, so I am well over the minimum), I should start gemming +30 stamina right? You can check out my armory at The World of Warcraft Armory. I gem +12 Def in the items I will replace soon. As I have a little problem with the gold right now I've put some of those in my T9 too but I'll replace it with +30 stamina ASAP. I have the 30 Stamina / 15 Resillence gem which takes the Defense minimum down to 531/536, does this mean I should gem Stamina until my defense is down at 536, or should I still keep it above 540?
For the helm, which Meta socket should I use? I've heard Austere Earthsiege Diamond - Item - World of Warcraft is the best and then use a Precise Cardinal Ruby - Item - World of Warcraft on the red socket for extra expertise (I've got 21 now).
I will gem the Legs with the Red one. The helm has a yellow socket and a +12 Stamina socket bonus, should I go with a +30 Stamina and skip the bonus or socket a +15 Stamina / +10 Defense?
Now, with the current gear (and the gems I've been talking about), what do you think I could tank in raids? (I'm going to replace the cloak with Eerie Runeblade Polisher - Item - World of Warcraft from HoR Normal.) I would rather like to skip Naxx and get straight into Ulduar (If anyone does that in guilds anymore) / ToC 10/25.
Thanks in advance!
Last edited by predujizzes; 12-21-2009 at 08:01 AM.
In terms of technique, don't bother with Mocking Blow. The only reason it's really there is to focus the target on you in case a taunt misses.
For a single target:
Charge, then Shield Slam>Revenge >=Devastate. Always keep a Heroic Strike queued up if you have the rage. Couldn't tell from your post if you were HSing at the same time as your other abilities or not, but HS isn't on the global cooldown, so you can use it at the same time as your other abilities. Make sure to throw a Thunderclap and a Demoralizing Shout up in place of a devastate at your earliest convenience once you're established aggro. You can probably leave the Demo Shout out for trash if need be.
Charge, Thunderclap, Shield Slam, Shockwave, Thunderclap, then normal rotation, as above. Shield Slam>Revenge>=Devastate, while using cleave.
The reason I say Revenge>=Devastate is that when Devastate is glyphed, it is slightly more threat than Revenge, but Revenge does more damage. In a world where threat is usually not a huge issue, I value the damage from Revenge slightly higher than the slight extra threat of Devastate. This is really up to you, though.
As far as gear goes, only gem expertise or hit if you're having threat issues. I run about 19 expertise right now, and I think like 80 hit rating, and I hold threat just fine. Your technique is far more important than your gear when it comes to threat.
Once you hit the 540 defense minimum, start gemming for stamina. Stack stamina as much as you can. You'll get plenty of dodge and parry and defense as you gear up anyway. Armor is extremely good as well. If you find items with bonus armor, they are often some of the best items you can use. Shield Block Rating and Value are not particularly good stats, but if a piece is an upgrade, go for it. Make sure you enchant all your gear properly.
If in doubt about gearing/gemming/enchanting, check out Agg's Prot Warrior Tanking Guide. There is a lot of useful info there.
Heroic throw and charge is a good opener but I rarely bother with heroic just because I know I can get agro without it (and on some fights you might need it later to pick up ads or silence). You shouldn't need Mocking Blow to hold agro, just charge, use Shield Block and then Shield Slam and assuming SS doesn't miss you'll be fine on initial agro. If Shield Slam misses use Shockwave because that can't miss and is actually the safe opener, but I guess I'm too set in my old ways.
For AoE tanking with a warrior you need to switch between the mobs and even then you will fail on bigger packs with stupid dps. If it's an heroic I suggest you let the overagroing dps die but for raids I suggest getting an offtank of one of the other classes and let them do all the work on thrash.
Austere Earthsiege is your best choice for meta (the others might be considered for some special fights but overall Austere works best). You shouldn't activate your meta with a pure red gem, instead go for 10exp/15stam or 10dodge/15stam, whatever your feel you need.
I'm not gonna get into the discussion of what you can and can not tank, that depends on too many factors.
You probably could tank in Ulduar 10 if pressed (I only had like 26k unbuffed HP when I started in there I think), but you are still wearing some blues, which means you'll be hard pressed to find people who will let you tank for them there. Also, it'll be rough trying to tank there even if you do. Your avoidance totals are low, your armor is low, and your HP isn't particularly high. If I were you, I'd do heroics until I had enough badges to replace the last of my blues before thinking about setting foot in Ulduar. Your gear is more than enough to tank Naxx 10, if you can find a group to take you there.
Okay, so I've modified my rotation a little.
As for the gear, I'm going to get 50 Emblems of Frost to buy Sentinel's Winter Cloak - Item - World of Warcraft. And then I'm going to buy Clutch of Fortification - Item - World of Warcraft for 35 Emblems of Triumph. For the iLvl 200 items I will grind Triumph and buy Crusader Orbs and craft some gear. And possible get the tanking boots from FoS.
IMO dont waste your frost emblems on the cloak. Store them up and go for tier 2 set bonus. While your getting those, convert your triumph badges to conquest to valor - platinum mesh cloak - will serve you well to you get ToTC 25 cloak.
Only other thing i can suggest playstyle wise is dont focus overly on getting 5 stacks of sunder up on any one target, especially in multimob situations. Focus on tab rotation, SS, TC and cleave and sunder.
Aerei - Aman'Thul US
I myself never start out with a Heroic strike, I only use it when I used my revenge (since it's free then) my rotation would be: devastate/shield slam till Revenge procs, then revenge followed by a heroic strike, keeping concussion blow and shield bash to interrupt a cast.
As for mobs, yea, it's best thing to start out with a shockwave on groups, then switch between thunderclap and cleave, but you can also trhow in devastates on your main target. With the aggro gain you get as a warrior (especially if you've taken the glyph for Vigilance) you should be able to hold them easily, just taunt the ones that escape back, after all that's why you have such a long range taunt on a short CD