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Thread: Veteran Newb DK Tank

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010

    Veteran Newb DK Tank

    Hey, Gang I need some help. I'm almost near leveling cap and trying to get back into to tanking, but I am have alot of serious issues. I use to tank all the name before Cata was released and my rotation worked well, but I took almost a year off and now decided to level my DK to 85, and try to get back into tank, but now when I tank my rotation doesn't work they way it use to do to the new rune system, and now I have nothing but serious threat holding issues. I don't understand the the new abilities so well either Necrotic Strike and Festering Strike seem some what pointless to me as tanking abilites because Necrotic Strike uses a U holy rune but doesn't apply Blood Plague, and Festering Strike though it does refresh Diseases on the target, it makes me use 2 of my runes that i could be useing for death strike to keep my Blood Shield up. I know it uses a Blood and a Frost rune to use and Death Strike uses a Frost and an Unholy. When I pop FS by DS almost always go on CD right away, and my Rune Strike doesn't refresh my runes as fast enough for me to pop my Death Strike to keep my blood shield up. Also is bone shield something I need to have since it seems like a waste of an ability for tanking since it fals off almost instantly Verse bosses and Packs.
    I know some people are going to say hey buddy read forum's and Elitist Jerks, thing is I did I could be an idiot I guess because all they did was confuse me, and alot of what i read in various places Counterdicted each other. So what I'm looking for is someone to help explain the use of the new abilities to me, how/when I should use them and the proper Rotations for Single and Multi Target Tanking so I almost never Loose threat with my single targets and Packs. Also maybe a good link to DK 85 Cata Tanking Video that may help. Thank You.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Satorri wrote a very good guide. But to answer some of your questions specifically:

    Of the three new abilities granted to Death Knights between 81-85, two are extremely situational (Dark Simulacrum and Necrotic Strike), and one is purely for Unholy DPS (Festering Strike - take it off your bars entirely).

    There is no set rotation anymore because of the randomness of your rune refreshes. The best advice I can give you is, alternate between different abilities, it helps you keep from getting locked out with no options - so Death Strike, followed by a Rune Strike, followed by a Heart Strike, followed by a Death Strike, followed by another Rune Strike, followed perhaps by a Blood Boil to refresh your tanking debuff, etc etc.

    AoE tanking gets a lot easier when you mark a skull. I've noticed that if I don't mark, DPS pulls adds off of me quite often - mark a skull and an x for a kill order, and DnD/diseases/the occasional Blood Boil is plenty to keep the adds on me while we focus down one target. Unless the DPS is stupid.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    I suggest you read Satorri's guide that Sebadoh linked.

    Here a short quick run down that will not make you great but may put you in the right direction. There is a reason guides are long. Some of the stuff I am putting here will be wrong in some situations and there is not room to cover all the exceptions. But this should be correct the majority of the time.

    A few quick pointers I have gave to some of my guildies playing DK alts for the first time since Cata:

    Don't look at your action bars.
    You said when you use Festering Strike, your Death Strike goes on cooldown. The abilities don't have cooldowns. They are tied to runes that have cooldowns. I'm sure you already knew that but now that we do not have a rotation it actualy matters. You need to know which runes you will use when you hit that ability more than you need to know if you can use that ability.

    Look at your Runes.
    Get an addon that clearly shows runes and runic power, and put it near the middle of your screen and look at that anytime you would normaly look at your action bars on a different class. Knowing your available runes and runic power will tell you everything you need to know about what abilities you can use or will be able to use in the near future.

    Runic Power is now your most important resource.
    Rune Strike will make up a huge chunk of your threat. You need to think of your single target threat as spamming Rune Strike and just using your other abilities to get Runic Power for Rune Strike. In wrath, we used runes first and just dumped Runic Power during Down time. Now it is the opposite. Also Rune Strike can now be used at anytime in blood presence and uses a global cooldown. It is no longer on next swing. Death Coil has extremely situational uses and generaly will not be used.

    You are a Healer.
    Incoming damage has been balanced around using DS as often as possible and at the best times. The majority of the skill involved with playing the class revolves around this. This is huge. Failure to do this will make you unhealable in cases where other tanks would do fine. You should be using DS during damage spikes. Getting the minimum heal from a DS is a waste in most cases. There is an Addon called Blood Shield Tracker that makes spotting the spikes easier.

    Keep your Debuffs up.
    Frost Fever + Scarlet Fever is a 28% reduction to incoming damage from physical sources. That is like having over half of a IBF up at all times.

    Use your cooldowns.
    Everyone remembers and uses IBF but many people rarely use thier other cooldowns. Both Vamp Blood and Boneshield are on a 1min cooldown so you can use one every 30secs. Vamp will last 10 seconds and BS will last a minimum of 9sec due to the 3sec internal cooldown of loosing a bone. You also do not need to break a Unholy Frost pair to use Bone Shield. You can get a Death Rune with Blood Tap and use that. Blood Tapping also comes in handy for DS when you only have a frost or unholy rune but no pair yet. Don't forget about Anti-magic Shell. It has a very short duration, but if timed right, can soak up a lot of otherwise unavoidable damage. Raise Dead+Death Pact can save you in a pinch. There is also Dancing rune weapon, but using it is a bit trickier due to the steep Runic Power cost.

    Besides all that, some notes on rotation:
    You are only loosing DPS/Threat if both runes of the same type are sitting unused so it is OK not to use runes right away. Do not use your Death Runes for Heart Strike in anything you do not outgear or are using so much CC on that damage is trivial. You will need them for Death Strike. Also, do not Rune Strike if you do not have both of the same type of rune on cooldown or it will not be able to proc Runic Empowerment. Runic Empowerment will not refresh runes that are partialy cooled down, only the completely depleted ones that are waiting on thier pair to finish cooling down.

    On single pulls your priority is:
    Keep up Frost Fever
    Keep Up Scarlet Fever
    Death Strike whenever damage spikes
    Get 2 of the same rune type on cooldown (so Rune Strike has a chance to refresh one.)
    Rune Strike
    Blood Plague is Optional until the patch.
    Heart Strike
    Horn of Winter for Runic Power
    An opening rotation for this is: Outbreak,DS,BB,HS,RS

    on Multi pulls your priority is:
    Keep up Frost Fever on everything (this means Pestilencing)
    Keep Up Scarlet Fever
    Death Strike whenever damage spikes
    Get 2 of the same rune type on cooldown (so Rune Strike has a chance to refresh one.)
    Rune Strike
    Blood Plague is Optional until the patch.
    Blood Boil/ Heart Strike
    Horn of Winter for Runic Power
    An opening rotation for this is: DnD,Outbreak,Pestilence,BB,DS,RS.
    -My DK is a Healer

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