Why do we need tanks?

90 Pandaren Hunter
12365
I gave up tanking in Cataclysm. With all the design encounters and such, it seems like the full weight of a dungeon/raid is on the backs of our tanks. It would also seem that they need a shield to protect them from the verbal bashing they receive when things don't work out.

In older RPG's, there were no tanks. You usually controlled a group of 4-6 toons. You decided what classes they were and you always made sure you had a healer in some shape or form. Everyone had some sort of survival ability (even if only a health potion). Mobs attacked based on the game AI. Strategy was necessary to survive or else someone was going down (at least one, and maybe a wipe if things got extra harry).

I understand the idea behind having tanks in MMO's. It makes designing raids/dungeons easier for the developers. I don't know too many that enjoyed the non agro boss fight in Magister's Terrace. However, with WOW going on 8 years, you would think they could phase out the tank role. If so few want to play tanks (scenario's prove that you don't need them), and Blizzard has stated that they are not supporting tanks in PVP, then why continue to use them?

If you take a dungeon that requires 1 tank, 1 healer and dps and then try to que in for LFR, you have 2 tanks, 6 healers and 17 dps. Well that's 4 tanks that are sitting on a bench.

Healers are utilized in raids, dungeons, and PVP. They aren't necessary in scenarios, but they make it easier.

One last item, it has always bothered me raid/dungeons are unrealistic. Why would any raid boss focus a tank? Is the tank insulting their Mom? If I was a raid boss, I would target clothies or healers. If facing an arena team with a tank, the tank is targeted last.
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90 Pandaren Hunter
12365
And for the record, I'm not stating that I don't like tanks, I am just bringing up the question of why? If we had 10 on 10 combat in real life, would we focus on a guy using a shield?

If there were 7 soldiers forced to use shovels attacking a lion, why would the lion attack a certain person?

I could cite many more examples, but the bottom line, if so few want to tank, then maybe the holy trinity is getting old and needs revision.
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90 Pandaren Monk
10415
ne last item, it has always bothered me raid/dungeons are unrealistic. Why would any raid boss focus a tank? Is the tank insulting their Mom? If I was a raid boss, I would target clothies or healers. If facing an arena team with a tank, the tank is targeted last.


Game Mechanics/Balance > logic/reality/lore
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90 Night Elf Druid
12930
Phasing out tanks completely at this point of the game is just not feasible. They would have to rework pretty much every class to equalize survivability and such. Plus, it would really reduce the amount of things they can do in a raid setting. Scenarios work because they are small scale. This doesn't mean you can just put 7 more people in, and call it a raid.
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90 Blood Elf Priest
14305
(scenario's prove that you don't need them)


Maybe, maybe not. Remember, scenarios grew out of group quests, and you can still see that in their mechanics and objectives. You pretty much never needed an actual tank for a group quest, even for the scarier elites.

04/08/2013 06:49 PMPosted by Savvymark
If so few want to play tanks


There's no particular shortage of tanks. There's a shortage of tanks, relative to dps, who want to queue for instances with random people. That's not a problem with tanking as a role, or game mechanic - that's a problem with the environment in LFD/LFR.
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14 Night Elf Druid
0
There's a shortage of tanks for LFD; there's a surplus for raids and LFR.

This does not in any way mean that people don't like playing tanks or that there's "so few."
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90 Dwarf Death Knight
11240
Because I like protecting my group. I like being the first one in and the last one out. I like going in game to find the biggest, hardest hitting evil thing in the game and putting myself between it and the raid and laugh as it tries to bring me down.

Why do we need tanks?

Because some people tear others down, some people mend people, and others choose to do whatever they can to put themselves between others and harm.

Also, because it gives us something to do while we beer.

/drink
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90 Worgen Druid
9760
Because Blizz says so.
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90 Human Warrior
11790
Yeah; lets take out a role many of us love to play... ><
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90 Human Death Knight
12620
And for the record, I'm not stating that I don't like tanks, I am just bringing up the question of why? If we had 10 on 10 combat in real life, would we focus on a guy using a shield?

If there were 7 soldiers forced to use shovels attacking a lion, why would the lion attack a certain person?

I could cite many more examples, but the bottom line, if so few want to tank, then maybe the holy trinity is getting old and needs revision.


If one of those soldiers had heavy armor and a shield, he'd do well to try his hardest to get the lion's attention and keep it on him.

Further, the other soldiers would be well served to stay behind him and try to kill it while the heavily armored guy keeps it occupied.
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28 Goblin Rogue
270
I agree with OP. The whole idea of a boss focusing a tank is archaic. You don't need a tank to make an interestedin dungeon or raid. And to work around the "no tank" issue, all you need is design encounters where AOE rather than direct melee damage is the primary damage going out. Make the boss hit much softer and instead drop lots of stuff on the ground, root you in the fire etc to deal damage, !@#$ing the focus to dps avoiding damage rather than a tank taking most of it.
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90 Orc Warrior
5170
For anyone saying tanks are old or the holy trinity is dead: I used to agree, but then I tried GW2. Without tanks it's just an absolute zergfest, no skill at all. And if you introduced a skill mechanic like dodging, many people won't be able to do it and will complain. Imagine if your entire LFR HAD to get out of the fire, or you wiped. No thanks. Not saying there has to be tanks but I've never seen it work without.


One last item, it has always bothered me raid/dungeons are unrealistic. Why would any raid boss focus a tank? Is the tank insulting their Mom? If I was a raid boss, I would target clothies or healers. If facing an arena team with a tank, the tank is targeted last.


And for the record, I'm not stating that I don't like tanks, I am just bringing up the question of why? If we had 10 on 10 combat in real life, would we focus on a guy using a shield?

If there were 7 soldiers forced to use shovels attacking a lion, why would the lion attack a certain person?

I could cite many more examples, but the bottom line, if so few want to tank, then maybe the holy trinity is getting old and needs revision.


This game has magic and dragons, and you think attacking one guy is unrealistic? It's fantasy. But to answer your question: magic.
Edited by Nth on 4/8/2013 9:46 PM PDT
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90 Blood Elf Priest
14305
04/08/2013 09:46 PMPosted by Nth
Imagine if your entire LFR HAD to get out of the fire, or you wiped. No thanks.


You mean Durumu? :p
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90 Blood Elf Paladin
13385
I think the real question here is:

Why do tanks need healers and dps?

Well, ok, healers I get. Why do we need dps again?
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90 Pandaren Priest
4455
04/08/2013 06:49 PMPosted by Savvymark
In older RPG's, there were no tanks.


Mume had tanks. Been a few years, but i loved tanking there. Was that the 80's CRAP. I AM NOT THAT OLD.

04/08/2013 06:49 PMPosted by Savvymark
If you take a dungeon that requires 1 tank, 1 healer and dps and then try to que in for LFR, you have 2 tanks, 6 healers and 17 dps. Well that's 4 tanks that are sitting on a bench.


Math escapes commitee. It is just impossible for a group to be formed without some people being on it because the "feel" like thier opinion is the same as math.

04/08/2013 06:49 PMPosted by Savvymark
Why would any raid boss focus a tank?


Blizz edited it out, but man I can cuss.

04/08/2013 06:55 PMPosted by Savvymark
If there were 7 soldiers forced to use shovels attacking a lion, why would the lion attack a certain person?


This is the prime example of why agro works, it is an argument for, not against. Yes, you can get a lion to attack a certain person just by body movement and positioning. It is a rite of passage into manhood for several tribal cultures.

Seriously though, well written. Don't agree with all of it, but it read well.

Edit: they use spears not shovels, but meh same diff to a lion, piece of pointy on a stick.
Edited by Sassinak on 4/8/2013 10:53 PM PDT
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14 Night Elf Druid
0
Just me, but the guy bristling in plate armor, stabbing and slamming me with his shield is intimidating enough that he'll keep my attention and distract me from the guy in the back wiggling his fingers and, for all I know, doing nothing.

Or if it was like a Brewmaster I'd just try to hit him and get frustrated as all hell trying to actually hit him, since, well, slippery little buggers.

The real question is, why is dodge the mainstay of a BEAR? Like, is this some sort of circus bear we're talking here? Acrobat bear? A bear that was highly trained in gymnastics, and now uses its flexibility to act quite un-bearlike? It boggles the mind.
Edited by Kangarooster on 4/8/2013 10:58 PM PDT
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90 Blood Elf Paladin
14565
Hmmmm,.....advocating the removal of tanks from the game on the Tank Forum.

And there's plenty of people that love tanking, there's just a "shortage" of tanks willing to put up with the random nitwits you run across in LFG/LFR. You know the type, hunters that dont turn growl off, people with 6 unenchanted pieces of gear, people that do less DPS than the aforementioned tanks, etc.

As to Scenarios, most people I know don't run them, myself included.

So, I'm gonna have to....

/drink
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90 Night Elf Death Knight
5760
I can understand where you're coming from.

But for my two cents, I like tanking.

After DPSing for so long, I feel as a tank I can actually make a difference in a raid encounter. A DPS simply tries to maximize their rotation in pursuit of an acceptable number. They try their hardest to stay above a minimum, but beyond that, you feel as though you have no outstanding contribution to the raid. For me, this gets extremely frustrating when we wipe over and over again, while I do nothing to change what I am doing.

As a tank, you have control over the situation, and have to do much more than perfect a rotation to do your job. The outcome depends much more on how you plan and react, which makes this game much more fun to me.
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90 Human Warrior
16690
In older RPG's, there were no tanks. You usually controlled a group of 4-6 toons.


I don't know, when I played a MuD back in the early 90's there was no 'tank' class, but there was always 1 person in a group who tanked the mob we were fighting. Usually they had the most health.

I also played Icewind Dale, Baldur's Gate/BG2/Shadows of Amn etc. The best parties had that warrior/paladin or two decked out in plate. Of the 4-6 people you'd put your plate wearers on the front lines to handle melee with the monsters you were fighting. You'd put your mages and rangers behind them and you'd sneak the thief around the back. If a mob ended up focusing on the thief, you focus fired on that one until it was dead and used your healers to keep the thief alive. Then after combat you'd touch up the plate wearers who acted as a tank.

The tank role has always been a part of D&D type games. It may not be as clearly defined as it is in WoW, but its always been there.
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90 Night Elf Druid
5475
04/08/2013 10:57 PMPosted by Kangarooster
The real question is, why is dodge the mainstay of a BEAR?


Bears dodge better than people in full plate armor, but not as well as monks (well, if you include parry). Seems about right to me.

04/08/2013 06:49 PMPosted by Savvymark
In older RPG's, there were no tanks.


This is not uniformly true. At least as early as Final Fantasy IV (which is something like 15 years old now) there were already some characters that could take damage in place of other characters and were personally tougher. They didn't have the kind of detailed aggro mechanics of today's RPGs (both MMO and not, see the Dragon Age games or FF13 for example) but that's a natural development of the genre.

If you're talking tabletop RPGs rather than console/computer, well, it depends a lot on your GM/DM. Although I think the current edition of D&D has adopted explicit class roles in a way that may be influenced by MMOs (although there are four, I think the fourth is CC/control considered a role in its own right).

Ultimately, the concept of the tank traces back to *actual warfare* -- not just the vehicles of that name, but hoplites and similar heavy infantry. Holding the line was a real thing (although it was not usually done by bears or drunken martial artists).
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