Trying to pick a tank

87 Draenei Shaman
0
I just came back after about a year off, and want to level a tank for cata. I played a pally tank in BC, and I've been doing some research, but let's just go with the idea that I have zero knowledge of any of the tanking classes.
Can someone please give a brief synopsis of of the pros and cons of each tanking class and how they are performing at 85 in the beta? I know things are still being tweaked and changing constantly, so just general impressions are fine.
Keep in mind that I am not a hardcore raider and will be focusing more on 5 mans and maybe the occasional raid.
Tanks (haha) in advance for any and all information.
Edited by Baltu on 11/9/2010 8:43 AM PST
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85 Human Paladin
5555
Death Knights are the tank currently believed to be OP. However, that may even still completely change before it goes live. Just a few weeks ago it would have been druids. Aside from that, the tanks seem fairly even in terms of survivability.

Pros for a paladin: mana as a resource (that never seems to actually run out), strong self heals with word of glory
Cons: no interrupt that is off the GCD

Somebody would have to help me out with pros and cons for other classes. Really, though, you should figure out which one you actually like playing. They're close enough right now that that is the overriding factor in what to play.
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89 Draenei Paladin
8460
Well another con against paladins is any form of sielnce pretty much shuts us down except for our strikes. Judgment, Avenger's Shield, Shield of the Righteous, Holy Wrath, Consecrate, pretty much everything is pretty much unusable till the silence wear's off.
Edited by Louneigru on 11/9/2010 8:56 AM PST
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85 Human Paladin
5555
Well another con against paladins is any form of sielnce pretty much shuts us down except for our strikes. Judgment, Avenger's Shield, Shield of the Righteous, Holy Wrath, Consecrate, pretty much everything is pretty much unusable till the silence wear's off.

...Evidently I haven't been silenced in some time. Does it really lock out that many abilities?
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100 Troll Warrior
19435
Well another con against paladins is any form of sielnce pretty much shuts us down except for our strikes. Judgment, Avenger's Shield, Shield of the Righteous, Holy Wrath, Consecrate, pretty much everything is pretty much unusable till the silence wear's off.

RoS fight inc T13.
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89 Draenei Paladin
8460
Well another con against paladins is any form of sielnce pretty much shuts us down except for our strikes. Judgment, Avenger's Shield, Shield of the Righteous, Holy Wrath, Consecrate, pretty much everything is pretty much unusable till the silence wear's off.

...Evidently I haven't been silenced in some time. Does it really lock out that many abilities?
Yep, last night ran into several heroics where silence was rather prevailant. I can only use HotR or CS until the silence wears off. Very noticeable in the end of Gundrak with those rhinos and their AE silence.

For some reason all our abilities are considered spell casting, even our taunt, but our strikes are just normal strikes, despite their mana use. Honestly, that seems like something that should be corrected cause that can cause major issues later on in Cata (definitely caused some issues a few times for me before I got better geared).

[edit 2]

Not sure, as it's been several weeks, but I think the DK also suffers from silence issues and their powers being locked out except for their strikes. Don't think it is as major for them since they have more strikes and they aren't locked to the same cooldown timer as HotR and CS is, but I do believe it affects them as well.
Edited by Louneigru on 11/9/2010 9:07 AM PST
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87 Draenei Shaman
0
interesting. any other classes want to chime in?
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85 Orc Warrior
8720
Just make one of each on the PTR and give them a spin!
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80 Draenei Paladin
OOB
11890


Well another con against paladins is any form of sielnce pretty much shuts us down except for our strikes. Judgment, Avenger's Shield, Shield of the Righteous, Holy Wrath, Consecrate, pretty much everything is pretty much unusable till the silence wear's off.

...Evidently I haven't been silenced in some time. Does it really lock out that many abilities?


Its been like this for ages. Pre 4.0.1, it locked out everything but Hammer of the Righteous.

Also, I believe all taunts cannot be used while silenced. Maybe Death Grip?
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80 Human Paladin
3440
Just make one of each on the PTR and give them a spin!


Pretty much this...I made one of each on the beta and found I liked the Warrior style the best. I think Warrior is a bit faster playstyle, with more options available on average...Paladins and Druids were fairly similar in having to stack debuffs/wait for Holy Power, and Death Knights...well, I still didn't like being restricted by which runes I had up so I decided on Warrior :)
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85 Human Paladin
tcf
8895
I've only tanked at 80 on all 4 classes.

I must say druid is the easiest. Paladin and warrior are the best for 5 man groups (imo).
I never liked DK, but I haven't tried it since 4.0.1.
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85 Orc Warrior
3945
Try them all i used to be a prot paladin but somehow blizz thought id like combo points in my tanking so i swapped to warrior.

In short my new tank choice came down to this

I dont like staring at bear asses,i hate combo points, i hate the dk rune system

Well looks like warrior it is for me. They all will do the job you need it to its just more of a what you feel like working with.
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80 Blood Elf Paladin
5015
Unless you're a die-hard min-maxer who really cares about squeezing that hundredth of an efficiency point*, there aren't really that many ways to differentiate tanks:

1. How they look: Warriors and Paladins use Shields. Warriors use a lot of (what looks like) weapon-based strikes. Paladins use a lot of yellow Holy glowy stuff. Druids are Bears and use mostly direct physical attacks. Death Knights use a mix of both spells and weapon strikes.

2. What resources they use: Warriors and Bears manage both rage and cooldowns, more cooldowns really after a point. Paladins manage combo points and cooldowns (although HoPo management is very simple). Death Knights manage runes.

3. What raid utility they bring:
Warriors deliver the STA buff or the STR/AGI buff, plus the armor reduction debuff.

Paladins bring the Stats buff or the AP/MP5 buff, plus Divine Guardian, plus their various Hands (namely threat reduction and BOP), plus disease/poison removal (might not be important depending on fight design).

Druids bring the 5% crit buff, the 30% bleed debuff, the Stats buff and whatever you can manage to cast while in caster form

Death Knights bring the STR/AGI buff and the AP buff.

* And even if you are, it's still too early to tell who's going to be in the lead, apart from "Probably not Warriors"
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Warriors or Paladins will be the easiest to level up for you.
Paladins = easiest to hold threat, and kill stuff quicker
Warriors = not so good AoE threat, but still good, and take less damage

Druids are good too, you just don't get your block mechanic until 75
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80 Dwarf Death Knight
1750
I've swapped classes quite a bit in terms of tanking over the years, but I have settled on Death Knight as it is the most fun for me and fits my play style quite well. Honestly, it comes down to what you enjoy the most and what matches your play style the most.

In terms of pros of a Death Knight Tank:
- Death Grip: I honestly love this ability to bits. It is so useful to grab that one annoying caster who won't come to you, or grab that pat that is running towards the healer.
- AoE Abilities Galore: Death and decay, blood boil, and spreading diseases through pestilence allow for more options for aoe threat generation.
- Self Healing and Survival CDs: Death strike healing and damage shield (Both scaling with damage taken which is very nice), as well as Rune Tap for % health healing. Blood worms are relatively useful due to their AoE heal, and there is always the % hp heal from sacrificing your ghoul/minion. In addition, Death Knights have a wide array of cooldowns to improve their survivability from straight damage reduction, to extra parry, to extra health and healing received, and a nifty magic damage absorption effect.
- Scaling tanking weapon enchant: +4% armor and +2% stamina

For cons:
- Rune system can take a little getting used to. I definitely recommend an addon for tracking these as the default little circles hiding in the top left of your screen are not especially easy to keep track of when attempting to keep threat on a group of mobs. This is especially true now that there is a measure of randomness in the way runes regenerate due to Runic Empowerment. No more auto-pilot with the same rotation every time :)
- Not really a class mechanic con, but there is the stigma of everyone expecting you to be terrible due to the large amount of inexperienced or just plain bad tank and dps DKs they have come across from 55-80. Not a problem generally, just something to be aware of though.
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90 Draenei Paladin
7790
Paladin tanks, FTW!
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85 Worgen Death Knight
4935
Death Knights bring the STR/AGI buff and the AP buff.


Don't forget that DKs also bring the -10% physical dmg debuff (via Blood Boil), -20% melee attack speed (frost fever), a little raid healing through Bloodworms (which atm are a bit questionable), and raid healing through glyphed Rune Tap.

I've tanked with the DK and Druid at 80, and Warrior at 60 in Vanilla (and in 70s while leveling). I personally enjoy the DK and the Warrior the most because it feels like they have the biggest toolbox for tanking. Warrior has heroic throw, pummel for interrupts, charge (via warbringer), intervene, vigilance, spell reflect, several stuns, armor debuff, hamstring for running mobs, and of course shield wall/shield block for Cooldowns.

DKs have a spell interrupt (brain freeze), a silence (strangulate), anti-magic shield (which I love for those dragon fights), ranged pull (death grip), lots of AoE threat, self-healing/shielding via death strike, and are master's of the short cooldown with IBF, bone shield, Rune Tap, Vampiric Blood, and 4pT10 blood tap.

I enjoy druids for their ability to do other things in a raid if you are full on tanks or only need 1 for an encounter. But it ends up bugging me after a while that I dont get to see any of those shiny upgrades you work so hard for.
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85 Human Paladin
5555
Don't forget that DKs also bring the -10% physical dmg debuff (via Blood Boil), -20% melee attack speed (frost fever)

All tanks bring these now (at least for single target).
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83 Night Elf Warrior
2295
I have this warrior tank and an 80 Blood elf Tank (Odiamh @ Uther).

Paladin:
1) lvling was easy(granted I lvled before 4.0.1) but it got old and tiresome a bit quickly
2) End game is still easy with the changes its just two rotations to keep in mind instead of one and does not feel hard to master.

Warrior:
1) lvling was not as OP as the Pally was but I felt like I had a tool for every job which kept it all interesting(after lvl 10 or so)
2) End game is a bit of a challenge atm with my current gear(most likely) but I feel like I am more on my toes with my warrior.

I am partial to my paladin because I feel comfortable in that play style so i vote for that, but I am loving having so many abilities to use as a warrior tank.
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85 Human Paladin
3000
I have an 80 Druid, Death Knight & Paladin, all whom have atleast 10/12 ICC experience (the druid having the most heroic 25m tanking experience) & I must say that pre 4.0.1? My favourite was the Druid, closely followed by the Death Knight. Paladin tanking was boring, dull & completely insanely overpowered.

Post 4.0.1? On paper, I am aware that the Druid tanking rotation has been tweaked to allow a bit of thought to be incorporated in the process...but quite frankly I don't like the way it is implemented. I am also aware that Druid tanking atm is designed for lvl 85, and we are missing some of our most important abilities. Having said that, I've shelved my Druid (who is pretty much 264-277 geared anyway and doesn't require much in the way of raid gear).

Death Knight has become a bit different in that you have to juggle your death strikes to manage mitigation & stuff..but other than that it has remained more or less the same. I absolutely loathe the new rune system and going forward in Cataclysm, I very much doubt I will tank on my DK unless the rune system is tweaked/changed so that I dont spend quite so much time with my thumb up my behind waiting for runes to come off cooldown.

The Paladin? OMFG I LOVE IT! AoE threat is nice, but not completely OP (HotR was toned down quite a bit) and the Glyphing options for Avenger's Shield, GC proc systems, are amazing. I love the new AD & the mantra of tradeoffs...Crusader Strike/HotR, SoR/WoG etc etc. Not to mention we've retained all the utility brought earlier like Hand of Salvation, Divine Guardian, Divine Shield to quickly clear debuffs, Kings/Might, Resistance Aura etc.

In short, I am currently maining my Paladin tank in ICC/Ruby Sanctum. I'll review the situation and maybe go back to my Druid once Cataclysm launches and the dust settles...but as of now, my DK is frost DW DPS, my Druid is Tree/Boomkin & my Pally is Tank all the way! It is ironic that the Paladin was made because I wanted to heal with her in ICC. :)
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