Friday, June 4, 2010

Tanking?!

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So, like most pre-expansions, I'm finding myself spending far less time on Averna, and spending much more time leveling alts. Here's my spread:

Fiorea, 66 shaman. I've got her dual-specced for ele and heals. I've been focusing on her more than the other alts, just because I'm so close to getting her to Northrend.

Shimai, 40 disc priest. I'm really digging disc as heals. For all I know, low level healing is way easier as holy, but I don't care. I like to shield things.

Maitea, 35 tanky drood. Yup, that's right - I have two druids. And this one is a tank! =O

Leaps, 27 rogue. Leaps is a female gnome who levels with another female gnome rogue, Bounds (played by Pete). Yes: Leaps and Bounds. Also, they look *exactly* the same. It's terrifyingly awesome.

I've learned a lot by playing these different toons. Something that specifically comes to mind is the difference between healing and tanking, even in the same exact scenario.

Imagine this situation. You're in a random 5 man, leveling up on your alt. A pack is pulled in Scarlet Monastery. The mage next to you starts going wild with Blizzard, and the hunter unloads all of his specials on the one mob that the tank hasn't pulled aggro on yet. You look, and three out of five people have aggro. One of the Scarlet Protectors hits 20% health and runs away in fear, bringing back another pack. Pop quiz, hot shot! What do YOU DO!*

On Shimai (my priest): Yawn. Here, have a shield. Want a renew? Sure. *twiddle thumbs* Eh, I'ma curse some shit. Oh, now the warlock has aggro too? Teehee! Fun! Have another shield.

On Maitea (my tank): OHHH MYYYY GODDDD WHAT THE EFF ARE THEY DOING WHY ISNT MY TAUNT UP WHY IS ENRAGE ON CD WHY DID FAERIE FIRE MISS WHY DID THAT OTHER PACK PULL AHHHHH KHAAAAAAAN

On my healer, a dpser will pull aggro and it is no. big. deal. In fact, I expect it. I don't think the tank is a bad tank, or the dpser is a bad dpser (unless it is chronic throughout the run). As a healer, I'm ready for any type of pull - I have my oh-shit buttons ready, my mana at a reasonable level (usually), and a sharp eye on who has aggro when.

On my tank, if a dpser pulls aggro, it is a catastrophe. I am *certain* that the healer hates me, that the dps think I can't hold aggro worth shit, and that they think I am pulling either a) too fast, or b) too slowly. So I panic and click on the big red Threat Plates nameplate (the one that screams at you "I am big and red and you should taunt me because I'm wailing on someone else right now!") and mash taunt, or faerie fire, or panic because both are on CD, and inevitably accidently hit survival instincts which is the button right next to those two, which I am sure makes the other 4 people in my group snicker and think "noob, why's she popping that now?" and then frantically try to get enough rage to swipe my Scarlet Crusaders' guts out. Panic city. Whoever said tanking was a yawnfest is an ass. Luckily, I have posts by the Bear to guide me. =D

After all is said and done, however, I actually really enjoy tanking. I just need to put a lot more mental energy into it. I could do 10 instances in a row on any of my healers, and be watching TV at the same time, or eating dinner, or whatever. With my tank, I can really only do 2 or 3 before my brain starts to fry from the intensity of my concentration. Funny how that works.



So I've got my hands full with all this alt leveling. I considered saving one or two for Cataclysm, but honestly, I just know I'm going to want to level a Worgen. Yo dawg, I herd you liked aminals so I made you aminal toon that you can turn into an aminal so you can aminal while you aminal. BRILLIANT! Makes me want to roll a Worgen druid, but can I really have three?!

So the question is, what class should be Worgen be?

Druid: Ixnay. I already have two.
Hunter: Quite possible. I already have an 80 hunter, but I had a total blast leveling her.
Warlock: I've tried leveling a warlock twice and it always got deleted.
Mage: Maaaybe. I have a level 50 fire mage that I kind of stopped leveling. She was fun, though.
Priest: Nope.
Warrior: Ew, no. Most boring class I played to level 20. Sorry, warriors.
DK: Nope. I want to experience "old" (new?!) world content.
Rogue: I'm satisfied with Leaps at the moment.

After listing them out like that, I'm thinking mage. Really, my mage is the only "fun" class that I've abandoned (oh, poor Airalee. I got stuck/bored in the Searing Gorge, which is the worst place for a fire mage to play). Unless I give up on my priest or something, I'm thinking I'll go mage. Maybe frost this time. Airalee was totally a fire chick. She had red hair and looked bad ass. It was only fitting to have her throw fire balls.

Are any of you guys making a worgen? Do you healers get stressed out when you tank? Any pointers you want to give me? (I can use any and all!)

(*at John P: I had to, I just had to. :P)

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8 remarks:

Moonra said...

will probably make a worgen and probably a feral druid (main is resto) but it might aswel be a troll :p it all depends on how the forms will end up.

Tanking is boring if you ask me, my offspec was feral cuz of the lack of tanks we had a few months ago, now the gear is on the bank and i'm back farming 'chickenstyle'

also i seem to lvl more alts nowadays, I hate questing but the random dungeon finder is a refreshing way of levelling (discpriest & hunter)

coil said...

It's all about familiarity... I can tank in my sleep, but my baby disc priest goes mad with worry when pulls go awry.

Thankfully, heirlooms are overpowered like WHOA and the tank rarely take damage through the duration of Weakened Soul.

Matojo said...

When tanking on my lowbie druids (25 and 35, respectively) I find I have an easier time if I use Feral Faerie Fire to hold aggro (it gives me a surprisingly biiig boost above the DPS) on each mob. This allows me to build rage for further in the fights. FFF, auto attack, FFF, swipe and/or maul every so often.

I also don't panic so much about people pulling AoE aggro and concentrate on the healer's life. I state ahead of time that I'm a bear, I'm not front-loaded and I need people to hold their horses. If they ignore that, it ain't my fault.

As for my Worgen, I know one of them will be a DK. The class of the Worgen that I roll for Lodur's guild thing will depend most on what's lacking in the guild.

Kevin said...

I have never thought about it, but yea, I look at tanking/healing that way as well. I have a DK tank and freak out when someone pulls threat. I have a druid healer, and kind of freak a bit, until the hots get rolling. On my disc priest, yea, I just shield, and yawn. :-) I have a resto/elem shaman and Prot/Holy paly in the wings. I like healing, and would LIKE to experience all 4 at lvl 80 to try them out. So far, Druid is my favorite. My druid started out as my bank toon. :-)

~Hoshiko~ said...

I currently tank extensively in ICC and I never stress. When someone says something about aggro, I.E. the hunter, I reply snippily, Yeah MD and FD are hard to push. Watch your meter dummy.

In 5s, which I no longer run on my druid, I simply assume if someone pulls aggro off of ME then they can have fun with it and continue pulling. The ONLY things that stop me are the healer's mana bar, and my own mistakes. Which I don't do so just the former.

Also I'm race changing from elf to worgen when available. No ToL means gogo Worgen form.

lxsli said...

Warrior levelling is pretty arduous to begin with. They get better in BC and I'm loving Wrath tanking atm. Juggernaut lets me charge about a lot which is huge amounts of fun, and Shockwave is both a great threat tool and survival ability. They have so many cool little tools, like the purge on shield slam, an interrupt (sorely missing from druids for so long) and spell reflect.

The pace is really high and the varied rotation keeps you busy even when DPS aren't pulling aggro. Top tip: bind HS+Cleave to your mouse thumb buttons.

Blizz are smoothing out several classes' levelling experiences, Warriors included, so you might want to give it a try before rolling the mage.

Chris said...

I thought you'd like to know that you're one of my major inspirations for rolling a tree. My main is a pally tank, and I got tired of the tanking thing, so heals seemed to be the next natural choice for me. I dinged level 20 last night on him, and wanted to know if you have any advice for me about life as a tree.

Oh, P.S., you also inspired me to make my own blog about my life in WoW, check it out sometime tankandheal.blogspot.com ...I only have one post in there ATM, but will try to put something in there at least a couple times a week :)

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