Hi Healers. How can a Tank Better Serve You?

12/08/2010 2:59 PMPosted by Spillproof
I have a 60ish pally tank, which i level solely by doing instances. I am primarily a healer historically, for about 6 years.

I can tell you that what you see in leveling instances, as a pally tank, is a joke. You can spam 2 buttons and hold agro on everything. Do not let it inflate your head. There is no managing of damage mitigation, very little positioning or other concerns.

I have allowed my head to be inflated, but my safety valve was always thinking 2 things were probably true.

    1. That things are different and unbalanced before "endgame" be prepared for changes.
    2. That Pallys are different and unbalanced (overpowered?)before "endgame" be prepared for changes.

I appreciate the input. I still think I am a good tank, but with the understanding that everything might just be lack of balancing. Still with all the compliments I get (1/6 PUGs.) I like to think I am at least Tank +1
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85 Draenei Paladin
As you become more experienced with tanking, your healer mechanics, and dungeon mechanics, you will also become more experienced at being able to tell when your healer wants you to pull and when they want a mana break, without having to ask.

As a general rule of thumb, I continue to chain pull trash mobs until my healer reaches around 40%. For Classic, Burning Crusade and Wrath bosses on normal difficulty, having healer mana at of 60-70% to pull is fine, although because people can sometimes be more antsy about boss pulls it might be better to just wait until they reach 100 so they don't b*tch.

Haven't experienced cata yet, so I expect I'll need to be more cautious when I get back to tanking.
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85 Blood Elf Priest
I've been healing (on a new alt every expansion) since beta, and I've done lots of instances, so I've got a warehouse full of little pet peaves, but we'll try to stick with the basics.

Be aware of range and LoS at all times. If I'm full on mana, I have no problem with you dragging one set of mobs to the next set of mobs, but if you do it, make damn sure I'm next to you, or wait for me to catch up (I might have been looting).

If your gear sucks for the content, accept it, and be a little more careful, don't go charging into a roomful of mobs and then %**%# at me cause you got two shot. Sometimes I can save you from yourself, other times, I just can't.

If I start mind blasting things or running up to whack things with my staff, that's a queue to pull more.

I'd prefer large pulls with a pause in between to a string of small pulls with no pause -- I need to loot, too! If you can't give me time to loot for whatever reason, stay inside range of the last group of mobs, so I can loot while healing.

I'm fine with Word of Glory. There's nothing else to do with that power and all those GCDs until like level 40, anyway, But flash of light is a critique.

If you ever, EVER install a mod, make a macro, or otherwise try to tell me to heal you, I will stop healing. Period. There's a special circle of hell reserved just for people who scream for heals. I AM NOT BLIND. If I'm not healing you, there's a damn good reason.

If I run through the middle of the melee, something is on me -- please to pull it off. I'll even do that for caster mobs, even though they won't follow. It's faster than typing something.

Standing around looking pretty is a large part of my job. It doesn't mean I'm not doing anything. I could be regenerating, calculating how close I can get you to 95% full with any of 4 or 5 spells, or perhaps just staring at your health bar as it ping pongs around due to HoTs. If I continue to stand there and look pretty when the fight is over and you move on, you might wanna poke me, I could be lagging or disconnected.

If you want to teach a dps a lesson, you might wanna let me in on it before you hatch your plan. I'm not psychic.

More if I think of it.
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90 Tauren Shaman
#1 pet peeve of tanks- when they don't watch LOS. Corners, ramps, little cubbies in the walls, all these will break LOS and force the healer to reposition. That is not a big deal unless the tank moves in and out of a blind spot multiple times. I have seen tanks do this unintentionally and it makes them impossible to heal without running up and sitting on them, meaning I'm in melee and subject to whatever aoe and cones etc I could have avoided (and this is if I was close enough to run into his blind spot and not 40 yards away, which means he probably died before I could get there.)

LOS includes running off when I'm drinking. If you can't see my dot on the minimap I can't heal you.

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85 Troll Shaman
When I'm tanking, I set the healer as my focus target, so I can keep an eye on their mana and health. (Plus it makes it easy for me to write macros for DS, etc).

As a healer, pretty much what's been said before: be mindful of my mana, grab any mobs that start beating on me and sailing will be smooth.
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85 Tauren Druid
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85 Troll Druid
Keep an eye on your healer's mana bar. If he's at 20%, he shouldn't have to yell "drinking" to get you to stop.

I'm also leveling a Paladin, currently 62 (played him to hold my off while I waited for Cata). I also feel "amazing," because not only do Pallies have a ridiculous amount of AoE threat abilities that aren't at all necessary for that level, but we can heal ourselves with instants. I'm having a BLAST with my Pally in the Outlands instances, because you just feel so powerful pulling entire rooms of mobs, locking down aggro with 2 buttons, then offhealing.

Like others have said, don't let it get to your head. The game actually begins to get challenging later on.
Edited by Outiluke on 12/8/2010 8:40 PM PST
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85 Blood Elf Priest
12/08/2010 1:49 PMPosted by Jmaximus
I've tanked, healed and dpsed for about 2 years now, and have learned alot all 3 roles. When it comes to tanking, go the extra distance. I've seen people tanks not pull aggro back after someone pulls it off (by accident or on purpose) or the healer not heal them due to an aggro pull. That is a bad stance to take. Perhaps they deserve worse, but your spec isn't called protection for nothing. You are there to keep them from dying no matter what. Go the extra mile. That mindset will come in handy when you encounter end game raids and excepcially hard mode content, when you'll need every ounce of that training.

Also some things that come in handy to learn and do are: a.) be able to watch the groups'/raid members health bars with the those bars indicating who has aggro, and your positioning (where and what your standing at/in) all at the same time. If this requires you to modify your user interface then do it. It pays off.
b.) Know your rotation so that you never have to look at your bars to do it. This way you can keep your eyes on the many other things that need to be watched.
and c.) Know the encounters and mechanics of each fight. You are the center piece of how your raid interacts with special fight mechanics. If there's an aoe blast that's about to go off that the raid needs to get away from that's next to the boss, then move the boss. If dps have to waste time moving out of the fire instead of dps that's lost valuable time. If you move it, then that's time you don't have to waste arguing over why so and so died b/c they didn't move out of the fire.

I am their shield.
They are my sword.
As long as I draw breath.
They shall not perish.

This is a good tank. He has the attitude. Attitude is so much of anything and everything, both in the game, and in life.

I am the healer.
You are my shield, and the dps are my sword.
As long as I have life and mana.
My purpose is to heal them all.
The tank comes first,
But never in 6 years have I once "let" anyone in my group or raid die.
It never has, and it never will, happen.

My brief words of advice to any and every tank.
Protect me above all.
And watch my mana bar.
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85 Tauren Druid
3 seconds of standing in "fire"= i quit healing you
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10 levels later and I have become a better tank.

I have been trying out the tips you have given me and have been more mind full of my healers needs.

See you all at 85. That's going to be a whole new learning experience from what I have read in these forums.

Thank you.

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Posted by Skillscore
Depends on who you ask

Experienced Raiders want this in a Tank for 5-mans

Chain pulling until the Healer is completely OOM (Watch his mana bar), keep mobs clustered up, and IN FRONT of you (So you can parry etc.), and don't talk unless someone is doing something wrong and needs to be corrected.

My biggest problem is sometimes we are fighting in very tight areas. where I need to keep the mobs in a specific spot to make sure we don't pull wandering aggro or smething else in the room.

Is my best option to stay there and try to turn the mobs towards me little by little and get them off my back?

Do i just let them stay behind me and not risk pulling more?

Or do I Pull them to a different location and make sure no one does anything for 2-4 seconds till I can get them to a specific spot?

Well I guess each one of those questions depends on what the best option is for each situation.
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50 Goblin Priest
Remember that, "keeping an eye on people's mana" doesn't mean the same thing any longer. You can't go just because the healer has half or three-fourths mana. If they want to sit and drink, let them fill their bar before proceeding. It will take less time to wait on them to drink than it will running back from the graveyard.

Also, if there is a wipe, don't auto-blame the healer. It could have been their fault, but it could have been lack of CC, people standing in fire (poison, slime..whatever), too many mobs pulled at once, bad positioning, etc. Just try again.

And don't pull right after they buffed.

Plus..thanks for giving a damn.
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90 Draenei Shaman
The biggest thing a tank can do is pay attention to marks, and help lay down the law if the DPS refuses to CC..

As a shaman, I bring a form of CC... and since I have no +hit, it can be touchy at times.

If I see a group with no other CC, it's a real bother to me. I can handle the big pulls just fine, but it's more comforting if there's some other CC in the group.

This is meant to be a MULTIPLAYER game, and if you can't respond to the group, well... you need to GTFO.
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86 Night Elf Priest
The nicest tanks (and something I am always aware of when playing mine) do certain important things:

1) Keep track of terrain. Up stairs / ramps is okay. Just past the lip is not - it loves to count as out of "line of sight" even though I can see everything but the tank's feet. (The bad part is that I have to come up right into the battle, sometimes with things that should only hit melee, just to get a heal off). In addition, think with where your positioning of the mob will place your melee DPS if I might need to heal them too.

2) Learn what bosses and mobs do - what spells or attacks are worth blowing a CD to interrupt or to prepare for the high damage and when you might need to move so the melee DPS aren't standing in a puddle. Yes, it's their job to move, but it's in no one's best interests if the only "safe" place for melee to stand is next to you.

3) Communicate. Let the group know (before you run ahead / around a corner) that you're doing a Line of Sight pull and to stay back. Sure, some people will still blindly follow you, but the healer won't be panicking and running to keep you in range. Ask your healer at what point of mana they'd like to stop and drink - I know I don't usually feel like I have to be at 100%, but I don't like being below 40% going into a fresh trash pull or 80% pulling a boss. Other healers have their own limits.

Customer Service MVP
*posts on forums other than Customer Service are purely my opinions and thoughts as a player*
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29 Human Priest
Besides waiting for me to build up my mana when I need it.

A couple of pet peeves I have

The tank and 3 DPS deciding to pull agro on more than one group. It is almost impossible when one DPS goes to fight one monster while the tank is doing another.

Pull agro on a small group of monsters and kill that group before moving forward. Also don't keep running around. Nothing upsets me more than when I go to heal you and get the message that you aren't in my line of sight because you decided to run around the corner. Now I have try and find out where you are, meanwhile your health is dropping and there isn't anything I can do about it.

If I pull agro it isn't that I meant to. It is usually that I've tried to heal you too much. Healing pulls a lot of agro.
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85 Draenei Shaman

If you do miss that and you end up dying please don't start yelling at us for failing to do our job.

EDIT: And kudos to you for actually wanting to improve yourself rather than assuming that you are God's gift to the group :D
Edited by Saukrates on 12/15/2010 2:52 PM PST
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40 Worgen Warrior
Useful threat that'll improve my tanking skills, as I now have a checklist of things to do so my healers are always ready.
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85 Tauren Druid
All stuff that has already been mentioned..

Get into the habit of glancing at the healer's mana bar before each pull. If you make it a habit, you'll always do it automatically. I love tanks who don't run off ahead without paying attention to me. Honestly, a healer should not have to constantly say "OOM", the tank should be watching it. I ran into a lowbie tank the other day who insisted it is my job to inform him when my mana is low, as it is his job to do damage, not to watch mana bars and carry the group. Riiight. You're a tank I want to run with..

Sitting to eat between pulls, if I'm OOM and drinking, will also get you major brownie points.

If I'm taking damage, I'll run mobs to you (unless it's a caster), please save me. If I'm busy healing myself, I can't heal you.

Don't ask for heals, ever, even if you're about to die - it just makes us defensive.

Stay in LOS of me, and I'll always have LOS on you. If your frames don't show when I am out of range, get some that do. There's nothing worse than constantly having to race to find the tank because he ran off and is oblivious to the fact that you're not standing beside him.

The little things really count. Show that you are aware of and looking after your healer, and they will go above and beyond for you.

Two thumbs up for taking the initiative to ask!
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