Yo! Started playing WoW about 6 months ago and I now have a 75th level Night Elf warrior tank. I went the prot route. I stopped tanking around level 20 and started leveling with a few BGs mixed in. Now I find myself at 75th level with my guild telling me to hurry up and get to 80 so I can tank for them.... uh okay, I am badly out of practice! So, I started researching tanking and ended up here. Surprisingly there seems to be way more to tanking than I previously thought. So I am reading through several posts and starting to get a better feel for what I need to do. Any suggestions would also be appreciated.
Here are some of the basics I do when I do go tanking in instances:
1. Work the rooms so that it is systematically cleared without pulling too many mobs - preferably one group at a time if possible.
2. Attack the strongest in a mob and get them all to face away from the party - this typically places me where I can see the party.
3. Start my rotation - used to be TC mixed with whatever attack was lit up. Now I know better.
4. Make sure I keep an eye on the mob in case one of them break away and head towards party. If so, pull them back with taunt and attempt to re-establish aggro by doing as much damage as possible.
5. Thank the healer for keeping me alive.
6. At the end of an instance go get my armor fixed - the cost of tanking...
One question I do have is when do you know it is time to pull the plug in a random if you as a tank keep getting killed. For example, I recently did a random and through the course of maybe 3 rooms the party got wiped at least 5 times. Several times I found myself using a potion to stay up or Life Blood to keep going - eventually the healer got around to healing me. To add to my frustration someone keep pulling a mob back to the party - I am not sure if I was not doing my job or not and I certainly thought I was doing it. I would taunt them back, but then another one of the mob would be pulled... I was the highest level member in that group. I cannot recall which instance it was, but it was in Netherstorm. The final straw was when one of the hunters fired a shot at a mob prior to the party being ready or aware of the pending attack. I tanked that little surprise the best I could, but it was too late. The healer went down follow by some of the dps and then I went down. At that point I gracefully bowed out of the group and returned to Stormwind. NOTE: I will gladly take criticism if it means I can learn something.
Your basics seem good, from what I gathered you don't tunnel vision on 1-2 mobs out of a pack of 4-5 and allow the others to run around and gank the party (I've ran with many tanks, even at 80, that don't understand this) which is a very good thing.
The first thing I thought from reading about how lower level players were pulling mobs while you were tanking was: "The dps were probably using taunts" which may be true, I've ran with lower level players that think it's a sign of how awesome you are as a dps if you can pull aggro off the tank and do everything they can to do just that, even using taunts.
Typically if I'm in a group that is under preforming, I'll apologize (even if it's not my fault, like if the dps is too low or the healer is going afk without mention while I pull) and tell them I can't afford to repair after repeat wipes, even though I really can, and just cut my losses while trying to remain polite.
I recommend reading Aggathon's prot warrior guide, as it lumps all the information that was previously scattered in different places on the forums into one place, for a very easy way to find answers to commonly asked questions. http://www.tankspot.com/showthread.p...-Tanking-Guide
I have reached 80, but I keep getting conflicting information about glyphing and in particular my rotation. I read the revenge should be dropped from my rotation. It was also suggested that I glyph for devastate, cleave and sunder. The rotation that was suggested based on glyphs is devastate, sunder, cleave, shockwave - in no particular order. However, I read a tankspot posting suggesting to use the following: shield slam, shockwave, devastate - spam shield slam and devastate and use shockwave on cool-down. I am just trying to get the basics down again. Haven't tanked at all since around level 20. Did a few runs as a level 75 and starting to do more at 80, but I am having trouble holding aggro in mobs of 3 or more (non-heroic). This is why someone suggested glyphing as mentioned.
Any guidance would be greatly appreciated. I would love to learn how to tank again and been reading as much material when I can, but it appear some of it is out of date or conflicts with other articles.
The basic idea behind holding on to multiple mobs at once is using Thunder Clap and Shockwave as often as possible and filling the remaining time with Shield Slams and Devastates (and Revenges post-3.3.3) distributed amongst all the mobs you are tanking. You should also try to keep Cleave queued up as much as your rage will allow. You can use the Tab key to quickly switch between targets.
Today is patch day the the US, and 3.3.3 hits EU realms tomorrow morning. This changes things slightly, so i'll give you information based on post-patch. The main abilities you should be making use of regularly are:
Shield Slam: Extremely high threat and damage. You should use this on every cooldown and every time your 'Sword and Board' talent procs. Can be used in combination with Shield Block for even more damage/threat.
Revenge: 3.3.3 is improving Revenge somewhat. A few weeks ago, revenge was made obsolete by improvements made to Devastate which made Revenge inferior in both threat and damage, even with the Improved Revenge talent. Blizzard was unhapy with this, and have increased Revenge's damage to compensate and changed the Improved Revenge talent; it now causes Revenge to strike 2 targets rather then just one, making Revenge a good choice of ability to use in between your Thunder Claps and Shockwaves while AOE tanking. It also has a very low rage cost. You should try to use this every time it's available, but when faced with the choice of a Shield Slam or a revenge, Shield Slam should take priority.
Devastate: Stacks the very important Sunder Armor debuff and generates a high amount of threat. You should glyph this. Use this when Shield Slam and Revenge are on cooldown. NOTE: Devastate makes the Sunder Armor ability almost completely obsolete. You can safely remove Sunder Armor from your action bars once you have Devastate,
Shockwave: Even on a single target Shockwave deals considerable damage and threat. The ideal time to use Shockwave is 1.5 seconds before Shield Slam comes off cooldown (aka as the third ability you use after a Shield Slam), and you have no Sword and Board proc. This is because Shockwave cannot proc Sword and Board, and a SnB proc from the third GCD following SS would be wasted anyway, as Shield Slam will finish its CD before the GCD is finished regardless of the proc. You shoudl try and use this as often as you can.
Heroic Strike/Cleave: Since these abilities don't trigger a global cooldown and instead apply to your next melee swing, you can and should 'queue' them up along side your other abilities as long as you have the rage available to do so. Obviously, use Cleave on multiple targets and Heroic Strike on single targets.
As for glyphs, if you are having problems with multi-mob I would indeed go with Devastate, Cleave and either Sunder Armor or Shockwave. The Sunder Armor glyph also applies to devastate, although it is important to not that it will only cause Devastate to stack Sunder Armor on the second target, the damage will not be transferred. You could also consider Glyph of Vigilance if you are regularly playing with DPS that out-gear you significantly.
Feel free to ask if you need clarification on anything or there's something I haven't covered. I realize what I've said is probably a lot to take in, but I hope it helps.
Thank you very much for the response. It answers a lot of questions and concerns I had like why would I use sunder when I can use devastate. I hate to sound like a complete noob, but what is "proc". I know when I am fighting a mob sometimes I see "Sword and Board" pop up on my screen. It appears from the description to work nicely with devastate and shield slam. I am guessing "proc" has something to do with activating this talent.
Again thanks. I am going to print your response out and go over it and make sure I have a functional knowledge on how to apply the information you provided.
'proc' is a wow/mmo term that basicly means 'activates'. When a talent like Sword and board activates and gives you the sword and board buff that makes your next Shield Slam free that would be described as sword and board 'procing', and the buff described as a sword and board 'proc'. It's also used to describe the effects of trinkets/other items with special 'on equip' effects that have a chance to give you a short duration buff as a result of certain things hapening. 'The Black Heart' and 'Essence of Gossamer' are examples.
Bit of follow-up. I setup my warrior with the Devastate, Sunder, and Cleave glyphs. I reorganized my ActionBar and placed my attacks for my rotation in order of importance from left (most important) to right (less important). I have also been practicing on a training dummy to make sure I am able to get the correct attacks when they are available based on the excellent information provided by Raysere. I am using my center mouse wheel in combination with the alt, ctrl and shift keys to activate the attacks. The middle button push rotates targets for me instead of reaching for the tab key. Now, I just need to start doing instances. I included a screenshot of my actionbar below. Any suggestions would be welcome.
One other detail that I think impacted my ability to tank properly as an 80. I found out that I did not finish training my warrior after I hit 80. I could have sworn that I did, but I didn't. He still had about 10 attacks to rank/train up on including devastate. I switched specs and sure enough my arms spec was needed training too.