Tank Comparisons...again

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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby superworm » Fri Aug 05, 2011 1:16 pm

I have been playing a DK tank since WotLK, and my thoughts on the topic:

1) The first problem with DK tanks is the scaling of mastery. Paladin mastery scales with boss damage, while DK mastery scales with their HP (it actually scales with the incoming damage when it is large enough, but that boils down to the HP level of the tank). During progression in which the gear level is expected to be lower than the encounter, DK mastery scaling always suffers. On the other hand, DK mastery shines for outgeared encounters. For example, when playing my DK tank, I can usually finish 5H dungeon bosses with the pug healer being dead from the beginning.

2) Another problem with DK tanks (and bears) is AoE tanking. DKs take much more damage than the block tanks for AoE tanking. It's true that this can be somewhat lessened by careful planning of DS uses, but it's still a holy pain when mobs hit hard enough. During 4.1 due to the absence of some tanks in my guild, I had to tank the skeletons in 25H Nef, which was a very dark memory for me.

3) The third problem is the larger requirement of skills and experience for a DK tank. Blizzard claims that DK is a hero class and thus they only expect skilled players to play DKs. Be it fair or not, it's true that DK tanks need much more effort to plan their DS and cooldowns to stay in the same line as other tanks. This obviously distracts them from raid attention. DK tanks use cooldowns just to reduce the damage to a level similar with tankadins without cooldowns, so it's very important to distribute or combine these CDs for the large damage period, which many people fail to do. And they have to remember keeping the diseases up ( though now it's better with 2T12).

4) For 10 man raiding, DK provide too little raid benefit, and is not good to use for optimization.

Some advantages of a DK tank: AMS is still the strongest anti-magic cooldown, and the larger pool of HP and more general DR cooldowns make DK a good choice for fights with heavy magical damage. Sadly T12 doesn't have such an encounter (at least no encounter with magical damage deadly enough to make a DK tank advantageous).

Since 4.2, I leveled a paladin alt and played with her for some heroic instances/raids. I must say that she is much more comfortable to use. You just cast CS/HotR every other skill and fill something inside. The survival skills are mostly seperate from your rotation (except for WoG), and can be cast with no GCD. As a tankadin you don't need to worry about your GCDs and resources: the GCD generally only affects your threat which is not a big issue in raid, and mana is mostly not a problem. For DKs, DS is their damage output AND survival skill, and it requires GCD and runes to cast, so first you need to plan your GCDs, and you need to plan your rune usuage, as they only refill every 16s for a full set. That's why it's very exhausting to play a DK tank. And I hate to reapply the diseases evey 30s.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby Shoju » Fri Aug 05, 2011 1:18 pm

I for the most part agree with Superworm's assessment of DK tanking, but I do have one point of disagreement. .

3) The third problem is the larger requirement of skills and experience for a DK tank. Blizzard claims that DK is a hero class and thus they only expect skilled players to play DKs. Be it fair or not, it's true that DK tanks need much more effort to plan their DS and cooldowns to stay in the same line as other tanks. This obviously distracts them from raid attention. DK tanks use cooldowns just to reduce the damage to a level similar with tankadins without cooldowns, so it's very important to distribute or combine these CDs for the large damage period, which many people fail to do. And they have to remember keeping the diseases up ( though now it's better with 2T12).


Our 2 piece bonus does nothing to help with disease managment. It allows spells to act as if there are 2 diseases running on the target. This doesn't apply our "tank debuffs" to the mob. We still need both FF and BP up on the mob to reduce the damage intake.


EDIT:
I have a few more things I want to say as a former Paladin main.

I relish the personal challenge of tanking on a death knight. I feel like I was getting lazy about things as a paladin tank. My debuffs are put up for me automatically, and I really feel like changing to a DK tank has made me more raid aware, more debuff conscious, and more aware of what is going on around me.

I'm not saying that Blood DK tanks are in a good spot when it comes to "high end" raiding, but I personally enjoy the DK style a million times more than I enjoyed auto debuffs and holy power. I still miss my paladin because it was my main for so long, and all my achieves, and my mounts, and vanity gear, but there are plenty of things I don't miss either.

My hope is that at least with 4.3 some of the glaring DK issues that still stand are taken care of.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby superworm » Fri Aug 05, 2011 1:25 pm

Shoju wrote:I for the most part agree with Superworm's assessment of DK tanking, but I do have one point of disagreement. .

3) The third problem is the larger requirement of skills and experience for a DK tank. Blizzard claims that DK is a hero class and thus they only expect skilled players to play DKs. Be it fair or not, it's true that DK tanks need much more effort to plan their DS and cooldowns to stay in the same line as other tanks. This obviously distracts them from raid attention. DK tanks use cooldowns just to reduce the damage to a level similar with tankadins without cooldowns, so it's very important to distribute or combine these CDs for the large damage period, which many people fail to do. And they have to remember keeping the diseases up ( though now it's better with 2T12).


Our 2 piece bonus does nothing to help with disease managment. It allows spells to act as if there are 2 diseases running on the target. This doesn't apply our "tank debuffs" to the mob. We still need both FF and BP up on the mob to reduce the damage intake.


Thank you for clearing this, as I haven't played my DK in 4.2 and I just expected the set bonus would be friendly.

Also sorry for the double posts.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby Shoju » Fri Aug 05, 2011 1:34 pm

superworm wrote:
Thank you for clearing this, as I haven't played my DK in 4.2 and I just expected the set bonus would be friendly.

Also sorry for the double posts.



It is depressing that the set bonus is sooo...... meh. it is 400 dps. if you don't have your diseases up, it will allow heart strike to act as if there are 2 diseases present. it is currently bugged on blood boil, because BB is actually looking for FF and BP on the target, and not counting diseases. It will not make either ability thing that there are 4 diseases present on the target, and it doesn't apply your tank debuffs.

If it wasn't for the fact that the gloves and hands were considerable upgrades, I wouldn't even bother getting them until I could get 4 pc, which is also debatable in quality, though it is more avoidance that isn't affected by DR.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby Vrimmel » Sun Aug 07, 2011 4:47 am

Seeing as we scale so much less against overgeared content, does that mean prot palas now are pretty much worthless in all other areas than raid tanking? I am mainly thinking questing, soloing and pvp.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby Worldie » Sun Aug 07, 2011 6:46 am

No, not really, I can as well solo pretty much every heroic boss and a great majority of lvl 60 70 and some 80 content as well, i'm still hard to kill in PvP (assuming i'm not overrun), and i can still kill mobs in solo quick enough (well, not as fast as ret, obviously).

Just, with a DK all of those are easier.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby Epimer » Sun Aug 07, 2011 7:16 am

The concept of a class being worthless at questing makes my brain hurt.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby Worldie » Sun Aug 07, 2011 7:38 am

Uhm try questing with a resto druid or holy paladin :P I've leveled my druid as full resto before the dual spec, oooh that was fun (not).
theckhd wrote:Fuck no, we've seen what you do to guilds. Just imagine what you could do to an entire country. Just visiting the US might be enough to make the southern states try to secede again.

halabar wrote:Noo.. you don't realize the problem. Worldie was to negative guild breaking energy like Bolvar is to the Scourge. If Worldie is removed, than someone must pick up that mantle, otherwise that negative guild breaking energy will run rampant, destroying all the servers.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby bldavis » Sun Aug 07, 2011 10:22 am

Worldie wrote:Uhm try questing with a resto druid or holy paladin :P I've leveled my druid as full resto before the dual spec, oooh that was fun (not).

i so want to expirience the horde leveling quests that i havent so far, but i refuse to try boomkin healing again

so til level 30, my troll druid is going to be pure LFD
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby Koatanga » Sun Aug 07, 2011 2:06 pm

I agree with that assessment of DK tanks. I have a DK tank that I really enjoyed all the way through 85 and in the norm instances. But when it came to heroics, I felt extremely squishy. I worked on her a bit on target dummies, honing rotations and such, but I could never find a priority system or rotation that allowed me to keep up my shield and diseases, which seems fundamentally flawed.

I understand that during harder encounters, the shield stacking isn't so much of a concept, because the size of the incoming hits pretty much take down your shield. But having to make the choice between putting up my damage shield and refreshing the debuffs on the boss just seems clunky.

I have read of some haste-heavy builds that reduce the rune cooldown sufficiently to allow both, but haste seems such a non-tank stat that again it's unattractive.

I now have a DK tank and a bear tank that I don't use, while I run two paladin tanks. I believe paladin tanking is the easiest, which allows me to pay more attention to what is going on. On my DK I get too tunnel-vision on my Tetris and can end up standing in something I shouldn't.

It could simply be that I have been paladin tanking since BC so it's all second-nature to me, but in reality they re-invent our class each xpac and we have to learn it all over again anyway. I have not spent the time on the DK for Tetris to become second-nature, but it's just so fiddly that I don't *want* to spend the time on it.

But what tears it for me is that I can't get past the "here are two necessary damage reductions, pick one" part. DKs should be able to keep up diseases without it impacting their ability to use blood shield, and vice-versa. That they can't just seems broken and wrong. It bugs the hell out of me whenever I pick up the DK to try tanking on it again, so I end up shelving her.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby Worldie » Sun Aug 07, 2011 2:11 pm

Simply putting up some sort of the old Pestilence Glyph into Blood talents (or glyphs) would solve some problems i believe, since Blood Runes are merely used as filler right now.

On a side note, even our GM swapped recently from DK to Paladin complaining that DK tanking takes off excessive focus from a RL perspective.
theckhd wrote:Fuck no, we've seen what you do to guilds. Just imagine what you could do to an entire country. Just visiting the US might be enough to make the southern states try to secede again.

halabar wrote:Noo.. you don't realize the problem. Worldie was to negative guild breaking energy like Bolvar is to the Scourge. If Worldie is removed, than someone must pick up that mantle, otherwise that negative guild breaking energy will run rampant, destroying all the servers.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby Koatanga » Sun Aug 07, 2011 4:11 pm

Worldie wrote:On a side note, even our GM swapped recently from DK to Paladin complaining that DK tanking takes off excessive focus from a RL perspective.


I am the RL for my guild, so I agree wholeheartedly with him. While DK Tetris may be more fun and challenging to master, I find herding raiders to be challenging enough without having to juggle runes at the same time.

I love the paladin as a raid-leading platform because I only have defensive cooldowns to manage in addition to my raiders. I do find it a bit boring and repetitive in instances, but I suspect that's because I find the instances boring and repetitive to begin with.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby bldavis » Sun Aug 07, 2011 4:33 pm

i love dk tanking, but i would never RL as one
same with warrior tanking

warrior tanking has a huge bag of tricks, and while its a blast to play, if i am the RL then i cant just focus on my job alone.
that is why i like pally and bear tanking for RL

bear is a nice simple rotation that makes it easy to pay attention else where
and pally is the same way, you dont have to worry about maintaining a debuff and you dont have to do anything special in your rotation just to keep threat/alive
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Brekkie:Tanks are like shitty DPS. And healers are like REALLY distracted DPS
Amirya:Why yes, your penis is longer than his because you hit 30k dps in the first 10 seconds. But guess what? That raid boss has a dick bigger than your ego.
Flex:I don't make mistakes. I execute carefully planned strategic group wipes.
Levie:(in /g) It's weird, I have a collar and I dont know where I got it from, Worgen are kinky!
Levie:Drunk Lev goes and does what he pleases just to annoy sober Lev.
Sagara:You see, you need to *spread* the bun before you insert the hot dog.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby Worldie » Mon Aug 08, 2011 1:35 am

May also be worth nothing that Prot pala and Prot War bring a extra raid-cd to the table, where as DK and Druid do not.

Actually, DK and druid bring a combat res to the table, but I don't think anyone runs without a lock / druid / dk in 10 men raid anyway...
theckhd wrote:Fuck no, we've seen what you do to guilds. Just imagine what you could do to an entire country. Just visiting the US might be enough to make the southern states try to secede again.

halabar wrote:Noo.. you don't realize the problem. Worldie was to negative guild breaking energy like Bolvar is to the Scourge. If Worldie is removed, than someone must pick up that mantle, otherwise that negative guild breaking energy will run rampant, destroying all the servers.
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Re: Tank Comparisons...again

Postby Astronomic » Mon Aug 08, 2011 8:38 am

superworm wrote:I have been playing a DK tank since WotLK, and my thoughts on the topic:

1) The first problem with DK tanks is the scaling of mastery. Paladin mastery scales with boss damage, while DK mastery scales with their HP (it actually scales with the incoming damage when it is large enough, but that boils down to the HP level of the tank). During progression in which the gear level is expected to be lower than the encounter, DK mastery scaling always suffers. On the other hand, DK mastery shines for outgeared encounters. For example, when playing my DK tank, I can usually finish 5H dungeon bosses with the pug healer being dead from the beginning.

2) Another problem with DK tanks (and bears) is AoE tanking. DKs take much more damage than the block tanks for AoE tanking. It's true that this can be somewhat lessened by careful planning of DS uses, but it's still a holy pain when mobs hit hard enough. During 4.1 due to the absence of some tanks in my guild, I had to tank the skeletons in 25H Nef, which was a very dark memory for me.

3) The third problem is the larger requirement of skills and experience for a DK tank. Blizzard claims that DK is a hero class and thus they only expect skilled players to play DKs. Be it fair or not, it's true that DK tanks need much more effort to plan their DS and cooldowns to stay in the same line as other tanks. This obviously distracts them from raid attention. DK tanks use cooldowns just to reduce the damage to a level similar with tankadins without cooldowns, so it's very important to distribute or combine these CDs for the large damage period, which many people fail to do. And they have to remember keeping the diseases up ( though now it's better with 2T12).

4) For 10 man raiding, DK provide too little raid benefit, and is not good to use for optimization.

Some advantages of a DK tank: AMS is still the strongest anti-magic cooldown, and the larger pool of HP and more general DR cooldowns make DK a good choice for fights with heavy magical damage. Sadly T12 doesn't have such an encounter (at least no encounter with magical damage deadly enough to make a DK tank advantageous).

Since 4.2, I leveled a paladin alt and played with her for some heroic instances/raids. I must say that she is much more comfortable to use. You just cast CS/HotR every other skill and fill something inside. The survival skills are mostly seperate from your rotation (except for WoG), and can be cast with no GCD. As a tankadin you don't need to worry about your GCDs and resources: the GCD generally only affects your threat which is not a big issue in raid, and mana is mostly not a problem. For DKs, DS is their damage output AND survival skill, and it requires GCD and runes to cast, so first you need to plan your GCDs, and you need to plan your rune usuage, as they only refill every 16s for a full set. That's why it's very exhausting to play a DK tank. And I hate to reapply the diseases evey 30s.


Ok I think your blowing Dk's complexity out of preportion. I have a Bear a Blood and a Prot War and the DK is BY FAR the easiest to play (with warrior being the hardest). It is not hard at all to manage deathsrike. As to no encoutners where a DK is preferable, I meen its not make or break but Baleroc screams DK encounter with decimation balde (Dancing Rune Weapon) and inferno blade (AMS), not to mention you can heal yourself for soooooo much with a properly timed DS after being hit by decimation blade. So I havent played a pally tank since 3.0 but if DK is that much of a step up from a pally then pally is just dirt easy to play.

The only thing I wish DKs had was an AoE taunt and/or some kind of AoE runic power blower.

-Side note, bears dont do too bad with AoE mastery because it procs 50% of the time off crits and if you're swipe/thrashing a bunch of mobs then ur mastery is procing alot. Its really only limited by your swipe(3s) and thrash(6s) cooldowns; not as good as block but definately not as bad as DK AoE mastery

-@Worldie Bears bring tranquility which is super cool on fights like beth's burn phase and 5% crit passive buff and savage roar which is helpful in very limited situations
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