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Thread: Time to Address the Tank Queueing Problem

  1. #21
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    Community is a big problem here. A simple scenario for Mr.X.

    Mr X. is newby DK/Druid/Pala/Warr. He just dinged 85 after a long questing and i ready to do some dungeons. He discovers that as a dps (he was most likely leveling as a dps) he must wait a long time to get to a dungeon so he then respec for a tank.
    - Now here we have a few problems. If you dont "play WoW outside of the game" (reading forums and stuff) you still can make "some" dps build use "some" dps items and make "some" dps in 5mans. When you are a tank it is way more difficult + you will probably have items from quests that are dps items.

    Moving back to Mr X. He read on forums how to tank and even bought some tanking gear. He is using the most popular tanking build - great so far. Now he is queing for dungeon and got insinde instantly - he is so happy! First pack of trash he cannot get agro, the party is wiped. Now Mr. X is getting a lot of crap in his face, from "you are a really bad tank" to "what the !$!!, you are a total !#!!%!@#, learn to play @$!$@! noob". Mr X leaves dungeon, sells his tanking gear, removes his tanking spec and dont want to ever tank again.

    You can hear that you are a bad dps on a 5 man but your group wont wipe becouse of that (well maybe sometimes). You can just hide between the other 2 dps in your group and mind your own buisness. As a Tank you always must be on your guard or you will be yield at.

    I am a tank and i love tanking (always loved it) but i will never advice my friend to start his WoW adventure as a tank.

  2. #22

    Re:

    I've copied this in from my WoW Europe forum entry. As it was in Europe, no developer will see it but I think it adds something to this discussion.

    ---------------------

    I recall a recent trade discussion talking about merging Horde and Alliance in the same groups to reduce queue times. If you think that sounds ludicrous, it's no worse than going up against your own faction in a rated BG. I suppose the question is what's more important to you; doing your dungeon quickly, or immersive faction-related gameplay. This of course relies on the assumption that one faction has more tanks than the other and, personally, I cannot see any way in which that would be true.

    As it turns out, I'm in the queue every day and have been for a while (only recently unguilded) - as mentioned, it takes longer to form a guild group in most cases when you're a tank, and I'm now at the stage where I can cover for almost any level of bad play and/or stupidity that I come across in a PuG. The only thing I can't handle is someone who is being deliberately difficult, but that's what vote kick is for.

    As has been noted, the problem here is the lack of tanks - I strongly doubt that's a secret to anyone. The reason for this isn't so obvious, though. Some argue it's because of bad PuG players; some argue it's because of guilds; some argue it's because of the difficulty of tanking. I'm not sure I subscribe to any of them because there are counter-arguments to each one as why the number of tanks could go up.

    Personally, I think it's because there's literally no reason for raid tanks to queue. Valor points are accrued in raids and the Valor gear itself is no better than what's available from the easiest of bosses in those raids. Once you've grabbed the items you want, tanks stop joining the queue because there's literally no reason to. Again, I know this because I've done it - I can't be bothered doing the same instances each day when there's no actual value in Valor points. When you add that to the fact Valor points become Justice points when a patch drops (and you can only have a stupidly small amount of Justice points), you're removing the need for a tank to queue once he's got everything from the vendor.

    Compare this to most of WotLK when the higher tier of vendor gear was better than what was available in 10 man raids. This meant that the multitude of 10 man tanks would still queue because they wanted every piece of gear they could get from the vendor. The solution, therefore, could lie in beefing up the vendor gear by a few points and increasing the average price of them. This would make the gear itself more desirable, but would also keep tanks queuing longer because they'd need more points. The only significant downside is the impact on casuals who can only get their gear from the vendor, but I'm not sure what you'd need high-end raid gear for if you're only doing a few level appropriate heroics.

    I also have a confession to make; if I were a DPS or healer by trade, I'd be terrified by the proposed changes coming in 4.1 (reference the first 7 dungeons give Valor points). I know it sounds great not having to log in every day to do a heroic, but think of the impact if you're a tank. The first night you're not raiding, say Friday night, is the ideal time to sprint through your seven heroics and then you're done - no more queuing on any other night of the week, which means far less available tanks at any given time.

    Time will tell, but I worry that Blizzard is about to make the dungeon queue times a whole lot worse if this change is implemented.

    -----------------------------

    Of course, don't forget - those who have outgeared the launch heroics will only start queuing for ZA and ZG - this may actually make tank queues shorter due to more players being willing to try heroics in an environment where they're not horribly outgeared and, thus, have limited chance of success.

    Just a thought.
    Unwavering Sentinel: Tales of a Protection Warrior Running Wild.
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  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by swelt View Post
    That would be cool. Tanks getting bigger and redder the higher their vengeance stack grows! (Might have some issues getting through doorways in WSG).

    One thing to note: at the very start of WOTLK, I saw a huge influx in tanks... lots of people were tanking to gear up, but when we got into raiding, we found that we had far more players that had discovered they liked tanking than we could possibly handle in a raid roster. So if you suddenly make tanking really attractive, you risk having players getting frustrated when they can't progress from dungeon tank to raid tank. If your only concern is fixing the dungeon finder then, perhaps what you are looking to do is make having a tank offspec attractive, viable and easy, rather than generating a whole new pile of mainspec tanks.
    We had similar issues and it's really bad. The funny thing is, there are many tanks who want to tank in raids but refuse to tank in heroics. So it's hard to balance right. I think some of the people queuing for dps at the moment are probably those who have been told to dps instead of tank in Wrath, because you just did not need so much tanks. Btw: It's quite hard to find a spot as a tank when you want to apply at other guilds. So the high demand of tanks fur dungeons is not mirrored at the raid level.

    At the same time you need more healers for raids than for the same amount of dps in 5mans. There is a high demand of healers for raids. While the need of tanks for raids is equal (for 10man) or lower (for 25man). Nearly every guild is looking for healers.

    But healers often have to wait for a tank when they want to do a dungeon, too. So the core problem is not how many people do or want to tank compared to heal or dps, but that dungeons seem to be less attractive for tanks than for every other role.

    I doubt that it's easy to make tanking in dungeons more attractive constantly. The problem is, that the tank has to pay much more attention than anybody else. And that the tank has to set the pace of the run. If anybody else steps in and tries to set the pace, it gets even harder for the tank, since she has to work harder to regain threat than she would have to do to get threat (and maybe rage is low and shouts on CD, or whatever you have as a resource).

    Stuff like build in tidy/threat plates would definitely help a lot. AoE attacks not breaking CCs or an option to get higher initial threat for some time would probably help, too. But it would not solve the problems.

    Graphical improvements would not solve the problem. It would be fun and maybe even attractive for some players for some time. But if tanking is not fun as such (or feels more like a burden) than the coolness effect would not hold long.

    Other (like me) would hate it. I'm playing a female troll warrior tank. It's one of the less often played combinations. I play her because I like the look of her. I don't play tauren at all. (I've waited to play a druid since they got available as trolls, even while I liked the idea since classic.) I don't want to look huge. Or red. Or sparkling. Well it WOULD help if they would change the HS-animation. Female trolls using one handed weapons turn 180 to the left and after that 180 to the right for every HS. It's sometimes quite hard to know where you are actually facing.

  4. #24
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    Strictly within the context of 5-mans.

    Possible factors in why players are discouraged from learning to tank:
    • Outsiders see tanking as a form of witchcraft. "I can't tank, I don't know how to tank". Assume tanking skillset has more to it than what they see and are discouraged from trying/learning.
    • Perception of tanking being difficult. Linked to the above.
    • Perception that being a new/poor tank damages a groups chance of success more than any other role.
    • Fear of being berated by groups over mistakes while learning.
    • Unwillingness to take up the pseudo-leadership role associated with tanking.
    • Perception that tanking is a somewhat 'exposed' role. In the spotlight, so to speak. Others are watching you and what you do more than in any other role.

    Factors contributing to experienced players choosing not to tank:
    • In current state of game, Tanks are completely at the mercy of groups. Inconsiderate (even unintentionaly so) groups make the experiance extremely frustrating for the tank.
    • Balance of power has shifted away from tanks; tanks have little actual control over combat. Few CC options. 5-man threat is constant struggle. Tank spends time battling for control over combat but never fully attains it. Frustrating for many long-time tanks as we find this chaotic and stressful.
    • Many Tanks express the opinion that DPS/healing is more fun/dynamic.
    • Increased incentives to run as part of guild group, guilds tend not to carry excessive numbers of Tanks.

    My abbreviated 2 cents on the issue. I don't think there's one simple blue pill that will solve the perceived problem, too many social/mechanical/metagame factors.

  5. #25
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    Glyph of Furious Vengeance - minor glyph that makes you bigger and redder according to your vengeance.
    Glyph of Fuming Rage - minor glyph that makes you give off smoke/steam graphics according to your vengeance.
    Glyph of Flaming Fury - minor glyph that makes you immolate when you gain vengeance.

  6. #26
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    Configure Power Auras so that your screen gets redder as higher your vengeance stack gets... You CAN do that.

  7. #27
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    To the recent posts:

    The reality is you either love to tank or you feel obligated for some reason (guild pushes you too, shorter queues, etc).

    If you love it, you'll likely queue up - but if you find yourself having problems, you might only queue with pre-mades guild groups.
    If you feel obligated, you'll never queue up as a tank for a PUG heroic. You'll wait out the 30 minute queue while doing dailies or something - you simply don't want the stress. And if you do queue, it will definately be in a guild group.

    There's little purpose to tanking a run when DPS rolls on tank gear (huntards rolling need on Leaden Despair, really? Blizz, really?) and DPS expecting tanks to do things the way they want to do things.

    Even simple suggestions like marking kill priority are ignored.

    There's a lot of frustrating in tanking a pug heroic.

    ****

    That being said - learning how to tank in a random group of 4 other people... is just always going to be bad. I don't think there's anything broken in LFD in regards to it being a bad way for new tanks to learn how to tank --- I think the problem is expecting 4 other people, many of whom are moderate raiders who are just looking to get the VP, to deal with the normal issues a learning tank goes through.

    Heroics are 'required' now for most players to get to the VP cap, or for some, the only way they can get much in the way of VP, they've done the heroics dozens of times each and don't want to 'waste' any more time in there than they have to.

    *****

    To the original point - not being able to queue for both 4.0 and 4.1 heroics is going to be a problem...

    I don't think so, at least not in the way I think you think it will be.

    4.1 Heroics = 7 runs for 980 VP each week.
    4.0 Heroics = 7 runs for 490 VP each week.
    You cannot get more than 980 VP from heroics each week.

    It's simple math - the problem isn't going to be the lack of tanks queuing for 4.1 heroics, it's that I doubt many tanks at all will queue for 4.0 heroics - and why would you?

    If, as a tank, you queue for both and get stuck in a 4.0 heroic, you get half the reward as a 4.1 heroic. There's zero incentive to tank the previous tier of heroics.

    I know that when 4.1 drops, if I tank heroics, I will only be tanking 4.1 heroics.

    ***

    On to the bigger issue that tanks may wait until the weekend and 'chain' 4.1 heroics, that is far more likely.

    assuming 10 man - Additionally, there's little incentive for a raid-geared tank to tank heroics past the VP cap - so a middle of the road raiding tank that clears 5/12 everyweek + BH would run more than a tank that clears 5/12 HM and the last 7 in NM. The first tank would need at least 6 4.1 heroics to reach the cap (6*70 = 420 + 810 = 130) with then 1 more 4.1 or a 4.0 heroic to reach the 1250 cap.

    The second tank, that clears 12/12 (12*70 = 840, so 1250-840 = 410) would only need 3 4.1 heroics rather than 6 4.0 heroics.

    You may see fewer tanks because fewer tanks need to run heroics.

    That is if I'm not failing and it's 70vp per 10m raid boss - is it 90? not used to checking... if it's 90, then the number just goes down a little more the number of heroics that need to be tanked.

    ****

    To the OP's point - I'm not sure there is a solution other than hope more players learn to tank and find they enjoy it - which is unlikely to happen when everyone just wants to get heroics overwith and doesn't want to 'waste' time with growing tanks (or worse, someone half-assed geared as a tank with no desire to tank, just wanting the shorter queue leading to a cluster-frack run).
    An introduction into WarTanking (no longer updated as I've retired from WoW - the concepts will still be mostly accurate but the numbers no longer will be.) - http://www.tankspot.com/showthread.p...101-The-Primer

  8. #28
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    don't forget that BWD, BoT and Tot4W will probably only be granting JP and not VP when 4.2 goes live "shortly" after 4.1, and as of yet I only know of 7 bosses in 4.2 raids (+argaloth 2.0) that MMOC had datamined (boss achievements and sub-zones). 8 bosses is only 560 VP per week per 10man clear and 720 VP for a 25 man clear.

  9. #29
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    That's true - so 10m tanks will need all 7 runs until they get 8/8 weekly, but then down to 1250-560 = 690, which would be 5 runs I think a week.

    25m tanks would be 1250-720 = 530, which is 3 runs + a 4.0 easy mode run once they're full clearing.
    An introduction into WarTanking (no longer updated as I've retired from WoW - the concepts will still be mostly accurate but the numbers no longer will be.) - http://www.tankspot.com/showthread.p...101-The-Primer

  10. #30
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    Tanking difficulty as skyrocketed since WoTLK? Eh? Tanking felt like it took some talent once again at Cata Launch but upon the round of nerfs that Heroics recieved were pretty much back to pull and faceroll AoE Threat, if anything you just have to mark a skull now so people know what to attack and dont pull aggro.

    As for tanks being strained by the groups they run with, yea I"d much rather run with a friends or guildies but the Tank has full control of the instance run, if anything it sucks being a DPS with a tank that can't hold aggro for anything.

    Also when it comes to raid encounters most of the time the tank has by far the easiest job, the only encounters I can think of that I've done so far that require a moderate amount of concentration is the second boss in BWD. This is why tanks often call out timers cause there have jack else to do. DPS needs to worry about maximizing damage output while staying alive, while healers have to worry about keeping everyone else alive including themselves since unlike tanks they dont get excused from most boss mechanics just because of their role.

  11. #31
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    I'm a mainspec tank and most days I queue up as fury run my dailies or tol quests while I'm queuing for 30mins. I've given up pugging as a tank due to the unbelievable number of complete bellends in wow. Dps who think it's fine to shoot at X when skull is still up then type "noob tank" when they die. If people wanna see more tanks queuing then play better, learn your class and don't just faceroll and expect us to keep the mobs off you. Yeah when I tank a guild run with guys I know and trust they make a habit of doing this but as I know they know exactly what there doing it's fine. Some random dounut in lfg doing it and then calling me all the names under the sun ain't fun.
    So maybe the lfg community needs to really think a bit more and help the tanks. Then prob more would run randoms. But until this happens I'm fine with waiting and or tank for guild.
    Last edited by Vong; 04-06-2011 at 06:56 AM.
    So long and thanks for all this fish

  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buffalowings View Post
    You want to see big numbers as a tank? Look at incoming damage: Problem solved. This is part of positioning and the consideration which mob to CC. When you mark mobs correctly this shouldn't be a problem. I'm a big as tauren. I feel huge already. If u want this feeling some more ask if the shaman can pop Bloodlust on a regular basis There are addons for this. I think blizzard should have better default unit frames but this is just a matter of opinion. Why? Because a dps and healer can predict when there going to crit heal or get a proc? There are random factors playing any role but you just have to reduce them to a minimum. In other words: I like tanking the way it is and I know other people who will agree on me. Of course there are certain fights that require more attention then others and there are pulls that are quite complex. This however is solved by repeating the fight over and over to learn the mechanics
    Your attitude is very similar to Blizzard's over the last few years and look where it has gotten the tank community in terms of active size.

    The point is that you need to make tanking more attractive. Saying, 'it's fine how it is', to any suggestion on how to make tanking broadly more appealing is ignoring the fact that it clearly and obviously isn't fine how it is.

    You are asking people who experiment with the tank spec for their class to:

    a) Do away with the 'fun' of dealing big numbers (there is a reason healers also have floating combat text now!)

    Incoming damage hardly counts given that it is not your doing nor should you be looking to increase it--after all, your goal is to reduce your damage taken as much as possible! It is illogical that this fills the same role.

    b) Deal with twitchy, buggy, and often spastic enemy pathing which you have never had to deal with before in addition to marking everything for everyone.

    c) Not appear or feel particularly powerful. It's not just about size, but it's about presentation. There is nothing cool about the looks of tanking. There are hardly any particle effects. You deal minimal damage. Most of your abilities have little fanfare or 'wow' factor, unlike many other classes.

    d) Install addons they don't know about to perform a fundamental overview role for tanking.

    e) Be completely at the mercy of the rest of your group for a large part of your success.

    This is a huge change from the largely independant nature of DPSing. As a DPS you require your tank and healer to do the right things, but you are still fully in control of your performance for damage dealt. As a Tank, you require everyone else to play well, watch aggro, heal correctly, CC the pull, etc. in order to succeed. Even if you play extremely well you can still lose aggro, die, or be unable to control the fight. It is frustrating to a new tank.

    -----

    All of these factors are simply barriers to entry. You may like the barriers, but that doesn't mean they are not keeping many people from tanking. If you want to solve the queue issues, you need more tanks. If you want more tanks, you need to remove barriers to tanking. It's really a simple concept.

    Resolving the issues I mentioned would not harm the experience of tanking for active tanks. I have been a tank for 6 years and would welcome the changes myself. Yet, on the other hand, it is likely to make the tanking experience a lot more approachable to newer tanks or people who would previously only consider playing a DPS spec.
    Maintainer of Rawr.ProtWarr theorycrafting tool. Feel free to PM suggestions or feature requests!

  13. #33
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    What I find appealing in tanking is taking the responsibility for the success or failure of the group. I like to provide a solid foundation for a run and like to guide them into the good direction.

    I don't have a need for big numbers or being #1 on the meters. This simply doesn't fit the role and you don't need it to be a successful tank.

    And as paladin I look way better in Protection gear with a shield casting avengers shield than when being retribution and cast my uber super "Templars verdict"
    EU | Genjuros | Buffalowings
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  14. #34
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    Actually one part that is appealing for me as a tank is that I just don't need to do high numbers. As soon as you start raiding even healers have something to compare. Sure you can compare your damage and it's cool if you have done big numbers. But everybody is fine if you don't show up high on dmg done.

  15. #35
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    I've recanted my prior, "I won't tank pugs" and have been queing so that I can get my Pally's healing set up to raid ready, and all in all it's not been too bad these days. Lot's of zergs; I can say I'm just sick of Deadmines and SFK - not that they're that hard, but I've been in them so many times (on my healer I drew DM 4 days in a row). I like the look and feel of the Uldum zones, the art work is cool, so I don't mind them so much. ToT is okay and GB is hit or miss depending on the group. All in all there are just too few dungeons.

    I think the solution, is something that Blizz can't control and that's the player attitudes. RL example. My son, who was 11 and tanked on his pally all of ICC up to the LK fight left the game because he said, "it's too hard to tank now"; what he really meant was that "it was too hard because people are so mean in heroics." Now that 's from an 11 (now 12) year old, so take it for what it's worth, but on an adult scale it's akin to " why bother, I don't fell like taking crap from some punk who still lives in mom's basement."

    Courtesy and patience would go a long way to encouraging people to learn to tank. I never, and I mean never give a tank, a healer or another dps crap in a raid, heroic, etc; that other person could just be some kid playing his computer game and wanting to have fun, like my son was. If we wipe or if the group is just bad, I'm happy to leave and re-que. What do I gain from insulting someone else - we all make mistakes, that's why pencil's have erasers. We all have a learning curve, some take longer to learn then others.

    People take the game way to seriously.

  16. #36
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    Well you can point the people interaction in the right direction as a tank. I always use "please" when I assign stuff for example. I'm always saying "sorry" when I did something suboptimal (like not positioning the mobs so that melees can easily hit from behind and stuff like that. Most times that actually leads to nice talking.

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Katzazi View Post
    Well you can point the people interaction in the right direction as a tank. I always use "please" when I assign stuff for example. I'm always saying "sorry" when I did something suboptimal (like not positioning the mobs so that melees can easily hit from behind and stuff like that. Most times that actually leads to nice talking.
    So true.

  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by LotU View Post
    Community is a big problem here.
    I think this is very true. Most people have an aversion to taking crap off of random strangers. I switched mains from my tank for the xpac but as I'm leveling my now-alt tank primarily through dungeons and its not an entirely pleasant experience. I often find myself cast with groups of players 3-4 levels over me, with better gear who don't seem to have any concept of aggro management and start aoe immediately. There's no sense of collaborative effort in many groups I find and I almost feel like my main opponent is often other players rather than the critters in the instance. Until this dynamic changes, the entry barrier to inexperienced tanks is pretty brutal, I think.

  19. #39
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    - I do not need any gear, or valor points, from the 4.0 heroics.
    - I fear the 4.1 PuG queue will be filled with barely geared players with subpar performance.
    - I want to play with my friends, at least people who I know I can trust. Having vent also helps a lot.
    - I do not want to spend twice the amount of time needed to finish an instance. I can, lets say, do some chores around the house and wait for my friends to become available.
    - Lets say 4.2 comes out with Fireland and once again I need to collect valor points, I have 2 options:
    a) Run the harder 4.1 heroics and have a chance to collect more maelstrom crystals. This is best done with friends who also do not need any of the gear.
    b) PuG a regular 4.0 heroic for the relatively easier content.
    This is very similar to when the ICC heroics come out: People tend to love them when they first came out and overtime you fall back onto the easier facerolls.

    In BC and wrath tanks have gotten a significant dps increase, and in cata vengeance is introduced, though a bit of a double edged sword.
    Quality of life also increased: tanks usually do not have to wait for a queue. We have no downtime for doing dailies (easily AoE down 12 crocolisk in TB with the help of victory rush, etc). For a while we even had great pvp potential.

    Instead of seeing big numbers tanks get to see a ton of numbers (all tanks come with at least 1 aoe dot+a cleave+an aoe attack), you get to actually fight with the mobs instead of staring at their ass all day. You also have control of the flow (I am not known for my patience).

    Tanking requires a certain mentality.

  20. #40
    I guess I don't see how this is a Blizzard problem so much as a community one.

    Tanks are about as appealing to play as they could possibly be in 5-mans right now. They do incredible damage, have great utility in most situations, get instant queues for anything, can even PvP and quest very capably. I'm not sure how tanks could possibly be any more attractive, aside from laser beams.

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