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Thread: This Prot Warrior can't keep up, it seems...

  1. #1
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    This Prot Warrior can't keep up, it seems...

    My tanking brethren,

    Lately I've been finding that I can no longer hold aggro, or that it is taking heroic efforts to do so, for my Prot warrior in places in TOC 10.

    I am 55 RL years old, with reaction times to match. Ergo issues prevent me from using the keyboard as much as I might like, so keybindings are not very useful to me. Still, using the Bartender4 mod, I usually stay ahead of the GCD and keep fights rolling.

    I draw my build from the guides here, so I know I'm not running a garbage tanking build. I have always focused on mitigation and effective health, but are people finding that such a build is problematic with the more powerful DPS'ers Blizzard is making possible now?

    Some of the power players in our guild are telling me that Warrior tanks are having trouble holding aggro compared to the bear and pally tanks, but I see no mention of that in Tankspot. I am wondering if I am just hitting a personal barrier,or if other warrior tanks are struggling too.

    Graysword of Perenolde

  2. #2
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    Well if you are clicking more instead of using keybinds, your HS uptime is probably really really low. Have you considered binding heroic strike to the scroll wheel? that way you can scroll with your middle finger while you click your buttons for rotation and not use keybinds but still have a good HS (or cleave) uptime.

    Personally, I think the biggest and best thing you could do is force yourself to move with the mouse and use keybinds almost exclusively, I think that's the only way you are going to get to peak performance. We had a hunter in our guild that had the same problems, and it took her a long time to learn how to not keyboard turn, but she eventually did it and her performance increased dramatically.
    "If the world is something you accept rather than interpret, then you're susceptible to the influence of charismatic idiots." -Neil deGrasee Tyson

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  3. #3
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    Hmm, I could assign HS to one of the buttons on my Kensington trackball. I move with that trackball until 'stand and fight' time, then numeric pad arrow key for minor repositioning. Alas, keybinds are not ergonomically smart for me, as I can't interact with a full keyboard for long periods without paying a high price. It is possible that not using keybinds precludes further advancement as an MT, but perhaps another look at my N52 gamepad is in order. I just don't like the little thumb joystick on that thing.

    Back to my original question: Are Prot warriors losing ground? This is not meant as an excuse or QQ, but to see if what some other players say in my guild on this topic is being seen by serious players like the gang here.

  4. #4
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    if anything warriors have gained a threat increase but with reduced damage to balance it for PvP, i think the average TPS hasnt changed though, faster reactions though will mean a lot more TPS, and i would advise keybinds or even bindings to mouse buttons (get a mouse with side buttons)

  5. #5
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    ok grays i have the answer for you ... if u wanna hold threat u just need 1 macro ...

    #showtooltip Devastate(Rank 5)
    /cast Devastate(Rank 5)
    /cast Heroic Strike(Rank 13)

    copy and paste that into the macro section and assign whatever pic u want to it (this will even work for a clicker) make sure u have the glyph of devastate and the glyph of heroic strike ... basicly spam it as much as u can, only ever stop spaming that macro when something else comes off cool down then straight back to spamming it (tbh you can actually hold threat off most dps by spamming that macro alone) but literally spam it don't wait for gcd just spam the hell out of it ... i garentee that will work (a good intro into key binding is to bind this to 1 or 2 and just spam that all raid and use ur clicking to hit ur sword and board procs and shield slams and revenges and shockwaves ... whatever is easier for you ... trust me this will work have fun ...

    so basically if u bind this to your 1 or 2 buttons ur rotation after the shieldblock shield slam/shockwave opener (assuming u use 2 for demonstrations sake and click as all your other abilities) 22222222click22222click2222222click2222222click222 2. As i said before ... usually just spamming 2 alone would hold threat

  6. #6
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    Prot warriors haven't lost too much ground in TPS and we can hold our own against any other class in single target TPS. What i might reccomend doing as a temporary solution is to get glyph of vigilance, and then from there toss vigilance on everyone as they get close to you on threat. i.e your frost DK has a huge TPS burst, so you start fight with vig on him, then toss it on the lock, then the hunter when he starts getting aggro happy.

    Its a little time consuming, but it might be able to get the job done until you can figure out a more ergonomically happy situation
    Winter is coming

  7. #7
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    You won't notice an increase in damage taken if you take one point out of shield spec and put it in Critical Block. You'll get 5% more crit out of Shield Slam, and your blocks will block for double more often. In addition, you could always swap out the Resonating Power glyph for a Vigilance glyph. If you want to up your effective health as well as increase your AP a bit, you can swap out the dodge trinket for the Glyph trinket from Triumph badges.

  8. #8
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    I realize you said keyboarding is difficult for you, but can I suggest you try one of the lefthand keyboard replacement gaming options if you see one at a bestbuy or whatever?

    The Logitech G13 is excellent, I have it. The Belkin N52TE is also great. I'm not as sold on the claw or some of the other options. While still technically keyboarding, most of these will have far better ergonomics for the task and may end up helping you do a lot more with a lot less movement.

    Whether that's enough to help I don't know, but it may be worth a look.

    Best of luck

  9. #9
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    I strongly recommend revisiting the Belkin for a couple of reasons: 1) it has a lot of keys and 2) it has a fantastic wrist support.

    I understand that the "joystick" (gamepad) ccan be a little odd, but I'll give you an idea of how mine is set up:

    The keypad (joystick which is removable) has my movement keys binded to it, so all character movement is done on my thumb. I have all of my abilities binded to the keys, and the button above the keypad is a shift key so I can use shift modifiers. I also have a shift key accessable via my pinky, in the event I require an ability while moving. Using this format it is possible to 'cast' while moving, cue up vent, etc. I am also using a gaming mouse for extra keybinds on the buttons.

    It will take some getting used to, but is well worth it.
    RNGesus - Saving you unreliably since BC.
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  10. #10
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    On my Belkin N52 the thumbpad is really stiff. On my Logitech G13, the thumb joystick is quite comfortably loose and yet still snaps back to center.

    If thumb mobility/flexibility is also a concern then I lean toward the G13, but honestly I have them both and they're both fantastic devices so I encourage you to try them.

  11. #11
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    I couldn't imagine trying to play a Prot Warrior without keybindings. I think at last count I had 38 different abilities keybound (Counting weird stuff like health stones and the like). If you're tanking raids with any kind of success without using your keyboard, I salute you.

    I would tend to agree with other posters, it may take some getting used to but keybinding will improve your performance, and is probably more ergonomic. You're probably killing your mouse hand playing like that. And I wouldn't worry too much about your age lowering your reaction times. One of my guilds best players is a ret pally not much younger than you are. I think you might surprise yourself with what you're capable of, and in any case, you're actually having to force yourself to react faster moving your mouse around than you would using a game pad or a keyboard.

  12. #12
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    To keep to the orginal topic I don't think prot warriors are falling behind or at least not enough to be worried about.

    I use a N52 game pad. The set up I use is to have 1-4 (most used abilities, Revenge, SS, Dev, Shockwave) bound to the main directions on the joy stick. I find the little button above the joystick very very touchy so I have it bound to shield block, it allows me to quickly hit it, but if I breathe on the button wrong I havn't wased a major CD. I still have my directionals bound to the 6 middle keys for fine movements. I have everything else bound to something else, except one key is shift. Having on key bound to shift allows me to set my have a shift modifier set to every key. You could do this with alt or ctrl as well to gain more binds at the sacrifice of one key. I know it is a huge pain to get it rolling, but I think you'll like it once you get it down.

  13. #13
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    Most of the responses here seem to have covered your questions but let me make one other suggestion regarding the N52 and movement. I might consider setting up the buttons in the middle of the pad with arrows on them as your movement keys (a la WSAD) and then set your abilties from there. There will still be plenty of buttons to set up your rotation in a convenient place and it has its own scroll wheel so you can set HS and/or cleave there (I use my mouse and HS up and Cleave down) and then if you wanted you could put vent or cooldowns on the thumb pad since they wont be used as often.

    Just one other way to look at the pad and it shouldn't take too much to make a profile (or alternate trial profile if you have a different setup already) to give it a shot.

    PS - /wave from another Pere-noodle =)

  14. #14
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    I don't have issue with holding aggro from DPS but Palli/DK tanks seem to generate more threat than I do despite my higher gear level (relative to the specific palli/DK who raids with me.) I'm not sure what I can do to increase my threat, near 100% HS up time, 11% hit (i know...) the only thing I can think of is to replace Last Stand glyph with devestate and, I'm not actually going to do this but I could, gem for more expertise. currently at 19 (4.25% ish i think.)
    -------------------------------------
    killing faster means sleeping more - Thedom

  15. #15
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    In pure survival gear/spec, I believe that warriors meet or exceed the threat capability of any tank in a similar gear/spec.

  16. #16
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    Wow, (Pardon the pun)

    Thanks for all of the thoughts and comments to my questions. I have been using a trackball for my computers for like 10 years, and all of the years I have played wow. Can't use a mouse due to ergo problems, so those of you worrying about me using a mouse needn't worry.

    I am working now to update the software and firmware on my N52TE gamepad, and i will give it another try. I plan to run my trackball with my right hand for movement, and use the N52te for everything else. I suspect the process of developing a new set of reflexes will be... challenging, but the consensus of your responses clearly is that I am going to have to abandon clicking to be able to keep up in TOC 10 or beyond.

    On my rotation: I have not been using a fixed rotation. The high-threat stuff gets used in a mix with taunts, raid buffs and the debuffs i can put on the mob(s) to lower their damage output to me and the raid. What has procced, what's needed at the moment is what I am whacking. Multiple mobs will get shockwave, cleave, thunderclap, and sometimes even sequential tabbed devastates (one for you, one for you, one for you) when I am in the mood.

    Single bosses will get all of the high threat moves, again mixed with the buffs and debuffs.

    I recently installed quartz, so i can re-apply rend with minimum downtime between rends.

    I know how important some consider pressing keys repeatedly very fast, but I suspect that approach will destroy my tendons, so I'll pass on that.

    One more point: Is DPS the only route to TPS for you-all these days? In the past, I just worried about TPS and minimizing the damage incoming, but I wonder if that approach has been found unsuccessful with the changes Blizzard has been making.


    Again, thanks for your consideration of my questions,

    Graysword of Perenolde

  17. #17
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    I am also a >40 yr old warrior main tank. I have tanked for years and always have used a Belkin N52 - and I love it. I use the hat switch for HS spamming, Cleave, Thunderclap and Taunt.
    Put some time into the N52 and I think it will do you good.

  18. #18
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    Checking back in, just to update - the Belkin didn't work out, after all, my left hand just wouldn't adjust. Then I realized that I could keybind stuff to the numeric keypad with the 7-8-9 and 4-5-6 handling movement with everything else keybound around it. I also keybound stuff to the arrow keys. I got some performance boost, but right hand still gets tired. Very recently I ran across mention of the obsolete ambidextrous Z-board 'Fang' keypad, but some are still out there on the net to be bought. and I'm going to take receipt of one of those shortly.

    One other insane thought I have had is to put an array of 6 footswitches on a board on the floor for the movement functions. Well, it's not like I am doing anything with my right foot anyway. My left foot is operating a footswitch for Ventrilo, which has been a help too.

    Thanks again for all of your comments.

  19. #19
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    You must have enjoyed the recent changes to the game but I know I have the whole removal of key spamming is a godsend to my RSI.

    Everything is based around inteligent key pressing now rather than how fast you can spam a key ... took a bit to get used to but I reallly like it now.
    ** Remember Warcraft players fail in directions you never thought possible.

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