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Thread: New DK tank - having trouble with 5man heroics

  1. #1
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    New DK tank - having trouble with 5man heroics

    As WotLK draws to a close I've found myself bored with my Mage and looking for a new challenge. I started a DK several months ago, mainly just for the experience of the starting zone, and slowly leveled him as a dps. About three weeks before 4.0.1 dropped I started playing him more and decided I wanted to try tanking.

    I did a lot of research (here, pwnwear, EJ) and had a "starter set" planned out to get into running 5 mans to get my feet wet. This consisted mostly of ToC normal epics and a few choice quest rewards + crafted pieces to get the magical "540"....and then came the patch. I went along with my original plan for gearing and now have most of what I wanted, and have tanked ToC normal about 20 times with little to no problems.

    The problem came when I stepped into my first heroic (Ahn'kahet) and got splattered all over the floor. We wiped halfway to the first boss and lost the healer and 2 dps. Replaced them, went to first boss, wiped at about 20%. At that point, amid a slew of insults, I apologized to the group and left. Since then I have just run heroics as dps to get points and buy T10 but since I know that skill + knowledge > gear I wanted to try and get some advice.

    My armory:

    http://www.wowarmory.com/character-s...&cn=Deathstoll

    My typical "rotation" for aoe packs is open with blood boil, dnd, HS, DS, sprinkling in rune strikes when it procs and extra BBs if it's a large group. I try to tab around to spread the RS and HS around.

    On single target it's mostly the same minus the BBs, plus I include DRW (glyphed) and blood tap/rune tap when they're up as well as bone armor and IBF.

    A few random details:

    At the time of the heroic disaster I did not have the T10 hat, crafted bracers, or some of the lvl 200 blues I have now. They were all ilvl 150-175 blue pieces though. I had about 28K hp buffed and about 22% total avoidance. The one complaint that stuck out was the 2nd healer claiming I was "getting crit too much" and "impossible to keep up". I was under the impression that uncrittable now came from talents, is there something I missed? Any minimums that I should aim for before trying to tank again? I'm planning to run dps until I get at least 2pc T10 just to avoid some of the problems from last time.

    Sorry for the wall o' text, any help appreciated.*
    Last edited by Deathstoll; 11-19-2010 at 11:33 PM.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deathstoll View Post
    The problem came when I stepped into my first heroic (Ahn'kahet) and got splattered all over the floor.
    I will only comment on your tanking, which I'm certain is up-to-par if you've farmed ToC5 Normal. I would recommend the heroic, there's very little difference aside from increased incoming damage.

    You were incredibly unlucky with your 1st heroic, both Ahn'kahet dungeons have some tricky details that you rarely worry about as dps but can become paramount as the tank. In Old Kingdom heroic, for example, the Ahn'kahar Spell Flinger casts a spell that reduces your health to 20% per cast; whether your max health is 60k or 24k, it is potential wipe inducer.

    Part of great tanking is learning, and preparing, in advance potential perils. As you continue tanking, you'll pick up on these details and hopefully carry on into Cataclysm with greater confidence.

    And oh yes... welcome to the tanking corps

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    Thanks for the reassurance Ryan, I was hoping it wasn't all me but I don't know how to go through logs and all that. Is there an addon that helps with that?

    Ps - it was in fact old kingdom...figures lol. And thanks for the welcome

  4. #4
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    Thread hijack!

    Hello! Sorry for hijacking your thread. Anyways. I've very recently picked up tanking as an offspec, and I've farmed gear as a DPS. Anyways, I've run a few heroics and it went completely fine. But then. Then I got Utgarde Keep and apparently I died on the second pack. The healer said I got critted and went down incredibly fast. My gear is not imba, but I have at least 41k unbuffed. What went wrong? /thread hijack end

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    My advice for a new DK tank is to use your cooldowns! Vamp Blood is on a very short cooldown timer and you can have it up a lot. Bone shield is great too, and for packs that have spell casters, having a mouseover mind freeze and strangulate macro work great. you should also be using AMS there. As long as you have the correct talents, you will be uncrittable. If you have the talents and the healer says you got critted, he is just plain wrong. Also for the guy farming for 2p t10 bonus....it doesn't boost survivability at all. The 4 piece, however, is very nice. My suggestion would be to farm JP for the bonus armor pieces (cloak, belt) and also the corroded skeleton key which will be a big stam boost. Also, the ilvl 245 trinket has a very nice armor boost on it, increasing your effective health by a good bit. So yeah be very liberal with their cooldowns. Thats all!

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elphidius View Post
    Hello! Sorry for hijacking your thread. Anyways. I've very recently picked up tanking as an offspec, and I've farmed gear as a DPS. Anyways, I've run a few heroics and it went completely fine. But then. Then I got Utgarde Keep and apparently I died on the second pack. The healer said I got critted and went down incredibly fast. My gear is not imba, but I have at least 41k unbuffed. What went wrong? /thread hijack end
    Sounds like you probably ran into something like I did - you might want to check wowhead or something and see if there are any tricky mobss in there. However, after talking to a few tanks ingame I'm starting to think that healers are so used to facerolling with 5.5k+ tanks that they aren't compensating for lesser geared ones and just throw the blame on us.

    Quote Originally Posted by Biscoinferno View Post
    My advice for a new DK tank is to use your cooldowns! Vamp Blood is on a very short cooldown timer and you can have it up a lot. Bone shield is great too, and for packs that have spell casters, having a mouseover mind freeze and strangulate macro work great. you should also be using AMS there. As long as you have the correct talents, you will be uncrittable. If you have the talents and the healer says you got critted, he is just plain wrong. Also for the guy farming for 2p t10 bonus....it doesn't boost survivability at all. The 4 piece, however, is very nice. My suggestion would be to farm JP for the bonus armor pieces (cloak, belt) and also the corroded skeleton key which will be a big stam boost. Also, the ilvl 245 trinket has a very nice armor boost on it, increasing your effective health by a good bit. So yeah be very liberal with their cooldowns. Thats all!
    Thanks for the pointers, I definitely try to use bone shield every time it's off cooldown unless I know I need to save it. I need to keep trying to work in vamp blood though, and I'll look up some of those mouseover macros. I should probably also mention that I'm still working on vettig used to keybinds. I've been a very successful clicker so far but I can see the advantages of keybinds. One last note - I wasn't implying that 2pc T10 was survival oriented, just that another purple 251 was better than a blue 200. The huge gain in stats + epic gems was the survivability I was thinking of, not the bonus to DnD.

  7. #7
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    starting to think that healers are so used to facerolling with 5.5k+ tanks that they
    This is true. If a healer says "you got crit and dropped" that means "I went to get a sandwich and you died".

    As far as being a fresh tank? Not much survivability issues with the blood tank tree from what I can see if you have a good healer. As bisco said, use your cooldowns. I find threat is usually the harder thing, which usually leaves you sans runes. Make sure you keep those cooldowns (rune refreshes) handy as well.
    RNGesus - Saving you unreliably since BC.
    http://i689.photobucket.com/albums/v...ellvarsig3.jpg

  8. #8
    A few macros to start you out:
    Quote Originally Posted by Deathstoll View Post
    I need to keep trying to work in vamp blood though,
    #showtooltip
    /use Vampiric Blood
    /use Runic Healing Potion

    That casts VB and health pot in one click, and since VB increases healing done by spells and effects by 25%, it buffs your potion too.
    Quote Originally Posted by Deathstoll View Post
    and I'll look up some of those mouseover macros.
    #showtooltip
    /use [@mouseover] Strangulate

    Strangulates your mouseover target if it is not dead and is an enemy. The biggest problem with using this on the Ahn'Kalet Spell Flingers is the possibility of missing the mousover and wasting Strangulate on one of the other spiders (if they're all grouped up near each other).

    For this reason I actually prefer to find the Spell Flinger before the pull, Skull it (for quick target marking, keybind Skull and X to extra mouse buttons in Game Menu -> Keybinds), Focus it (bind Focus Target and Target Focus to extra mouse keys or whatever in the same menu), and use this Strangulate Focus macro:

    #showtooltip
    /use [@focus] Strangulate

    Their 80% dmg spell is called Shadow Blast, iirc, and has a ~6s cast time. Wait till you see a slow-moving cast bar on your Focus target, then use that macro.

    Usually just Skulling it will be enough, since all the DPS will also use their silences and interupts on it too.

    Here's a good intro to creating macros.

    Regarding the encounters, there are several options:

    1. The comments on the Wowhead.com pages for instances usually pinpoint the big things you have to worry about. When in doubt, check them out first.

    2. Assuming you know this from your mage, but saying it anyway just in case: Combat meter addons like Recount and Skada not only show DPS and healing, but damage taken, threat, and other tank stats too. Useful to check where those big dmg spikes came from while you're waiting for a rez, or to replace a rage quitter, or whatever.
    Last edited by Kurtosis; 11-23-2010 at 03:01 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    First off for opening I recommend D&D first, not Blood Boil.

    Either Drop D&D on the mobs or drop it at your feet and Deathgrip a caster mob to you. Then hit it with Icy Touch (and Plague Strike if you want to run 2 diseases), Pestilence, Blood Boil, and Blood Boil again if you can.

    Is usually good opener if you have D&D off CD.

    Also MARK your target. Especially your first target.

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