DK Tanking FAQ - 4.3 [NOT CURRENT]

80 Tauren Death Knight
1770
"Being able to have threat ahead of dps on quick fights is fine. You likely felt like you had more because you can ramp up the threat a little faster due to more white hits.
For sustained TPS though, there's no way dual-wielding would keep up.
I know a lot of the meter addons have a threat metric. Watch that on a raid boss as 2H then dual, I'll bet you see a significant difference."
I normally use recount threat, so yes I am aware of this. My DWing still holds more threat.
It might be my spec, it might be my rotation - but DWing is better for me.
As I mentioned in previous posts on this subject, my Blood Tank will probably not be used for any raiding past WotLK anyway. So I think he's fine the way he is :)... personal preference for tanking on him is DW, and it works for WoLK. We'll see what happens come Cata actual launch.
Edited by Tàurc on 11/5/2010 10:06 PM PDT
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90 Human Death Knight
8895
Why the points in virulence? Particularly in the diseaseless setup. I thought it didn't affect any blood abilities except maybe BB? It seems like those 3 points could go into Hand of Doom or abom's might or BCB, depending on if you want a bit more utility or a bit more threat.

3 talent points for 6% better chance for blood boil to hit on a boss seems wasteful. Unfortunately, none of the other talents offer much utility. BCB is terrible without diseases. Butchery is a leveling talent. Hand of Doom is a nice utility talent, but not really better than Virulence. The rest of tier 1 frost or unholy are not good talents for disease-less blood.

Abom's might is ok, but I'm not sure it is better than Virulence since the AP debuff is significant damage reduction in a boss fight. I'd spend the points in Virulence unless I had another raid member bringing the AP debuff.
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85 Goblin Death Knight
0
"Heart Strike, while it is the "signature" ability of the Blood tree, is actually something you will use rarely on single targets because you want to maximize your Death Strikes. What this means is that even though Runic Empowerment will proc Death Runes, you aren't going to use them immediately on a Heart Strike. You're going to sit on them until you have the Runes for a Death Strike."

so your trying to tell me that i should just sit there and not generate threat until i can deathstrike, so that way i can do a little self healing and create a bloodshield that will be down in 1-2 hits. somehow, i doubt that.
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85 Goblin Death Knight
0
"I dislike Crimson Scourge because the Plague Strike mechanic can only have been designed by someone who does not understand how to play the class and is not worth the talent budget that's spent on it."

I guess your going to be designing the game from now on?
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85 Orc Death Knight
4300
Why the points in virulence? Particularly in the diseaseless setup. I thought it didn't affect any blood abilities except maybe BB? It seems like those 3 points could go into Hand of Doom or abom's might or BCB, depending on if you want a bit more utility or a bit more threat.
This is going to sound really stupid (because it is) but the Virulence is mainly for Blood Boil. If it misses, it still consumes the Rune and doesn't apply Scarlet Fever. It also helps with D&D in situations where you need it.

Hand of Doom and Blood-caked Blade are both a bad joke. BCB in particular provides less than half a percent of extra damage, even when you are running Diseases all the time. It is never worth investing in.
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85 Orc Death Knight
4300
My understanding is that you may want to use them for additional threat on trash. However, pre-Cata, the trash is dead before you'll get the additional threat out of them, so I don't bother there either.


maybe this is true on heroics, but on raids that's a whole diferent matter.

ICC trash doesn't die instantaneously, and more often than not Ret pallys and Frost DK's do OBSCENE amounts of instant-AOE aggro, thus lacking the extra threat (however minor it may be) of the diseases, plus the lower damage of BB when there are no diseases means a much lower AOE threat, and often losing several mobs.

at least the AOE of mages or warlocks is dealt in condensated doses, as Blizzard is a channeled spell, and so is rain of fire, but Howling blast is an instant strong nuke that (at least on ICC) can crit for over 12k if u're geared enough, considering it's spammable nature, I want as much AOE threat as I can.

this will be doubly true in cataclysm, where adds won't die in a blink of an eye, (then again on cata AOE should be minimal for non-tanks, so maybe that won't be so much of a concern)
This is actually not doubly true in Cataclysm. Taking what happens in ICC at 80 as an indication of Cataclysm is generally not a good idea. AoE damage versus tank threat is not so out of control at 85 and CC is required. As well, they want the guy who is dumb and AoEs everything to sometimes pull threat and get killed. It's part of the design. When people start being able to die by pulling a mob off the tank again, things will change.

As to the original question, I advocate never using Diseases unless no one else brings the FF debuff. At 85, you have Outbreak that you can use generally every other pack if you want, but it's never worth it to spend an FU pair on them for trash.
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85 Orc Death Knight
4300
So you're taking a talent like Blood Parasite that does very little overall damage, and even less healing because the guardians it spawns rarely every reach 20 stacks to proc the heal over a talent like Crimson Scourge for something that you'll actually use, even if only for trash.

Hand of Doom could be quite useful on caster heavy raids, and it brings more utility than Blood Parasites too...

Now, if they ever decide to let the Blood Worms explode with how ever many stacks they have when they dissipate or are killed, then it would be another story.
Blood Parasite is an incredible talent, but it's true you don't get as much out of it at 80 as you will at 85. At 85 it's absolutely mandatory because it saves so much healer mana. As for Crimson Scourge, 40% more garbage is still garbage.

Hand of Doom is a PvP talent at best. There is really no room for it, even at 85, with all the other mandatory talents eating up points, and even then it's just not worth it. Utility that you will rarely use is not utility, in my opinion.
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85 Orc Death Knight
4300
Some corrections for the gem, enchant and reforging section:
    You can never reforge to a primary stat (stam)
    Mobs currently only have a 6% chance to dodge, which is 23 expertise (will be 26 again in cata)
    And that 23 expertise is the soft cap, since tanks do stand in the front and attacks can still be parried.
    You never actually talk about gemming or enchanting. It's really just a reforging section.
Yes I do, right here:
- If you can choose more Stamina, do that.
That covers gemming and enchanting almost entirely.

Thanks for reminding me to change the Expertise to 23, though. While it is a soft cap, trying to hit the Parry cap is never going to be as important as getting more Mastery. Expertise is extremely valuable up to the Dodge cap because it does double duty. After that, though, it's really not all that impactful.
Edited by Lichloathe on 11/5/2010 6:15 PM PDT
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85 Orc Death Knight
4300
"Heart Strike, while it is the "signature" ability of the Blood tree, is actually something you will use rarely on single targets because you want to maximize your Death Strikes. What this means is that even though Runic Empowerment will proc Death Runes, you aren't going to use them immediately on a Heart Strike. You're going to sit on them until you have the Runes for a Death Strike."

so your trying to tell me that i should just sit there and not generate threat until i can deathstrike, so that way i can do a little self healing and create a bloodshield that will be down in 1-2 hits. somehow, i doubt that.
Allow me to try to change your mind. First of all, when I say "sit on them", this is not as clear as it could be. You're not actually sitting on them for very long. What it means is that if you Rune Strike and get a Death Rune from an RE proc, you don't use it immediately on Heart Strike. You just Rune Strike again. You're not sitting there generating no threat, as you interpreted it. I'll clarify this better in the post.

Now, here's a comparison (albeit at 85) of the average of 50 eight minute fights, and trust me, it's hilarious. Note: In order to show this, I have to do really stupid things, because these new forums don't have the [pre] tags, so I apologize.

http://img821.imageshack.us/img821/7362/derpk.png

Notice - The DPS and total threat are almost identical. The damage you gain from using those Death Runes on HS instead of on DS is 2/10ths of a percent. But the significant thing that happens is that you take 10% more damage.
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85 Orc Death Knight
4300
I normally use recount threat, so yes I am area of this. My DWing still holds more threat.
It might be my spec, it might be my rotation - but DWing is better for me.

As I mentioned in previous posts on this subject, my Blood Tank will probably not be used for any raiding past WotLK anyway. So I think he's fine the way he is :)... personal preference for tanking on him is DW, and it works for WoLK. We'll see what happens come Cata actual launch.
If your DW Threat is higher than your 2H threat, especially using two fast weapons, then you are doing something wrong with your 2H spec and that's all there is to it. DW does not outperform 2H at 80 when both are being done correctly. The very best you can reach is to be equal to 2H.
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85 Night Elf Druid
9510
Blood Parasite is an incredible talent, but it's true you don't get as much out of it at 80 as you will at 85. At 85 it's absolutely mandatory because it saves so much healer mana. As for Crimson Scourge, 40% more garbage is still garbage.

Hand of Doom is a PvP talent at best. There is really no room for it, even at 85, with all the other mandatory talents eating up points, and even then it's just not worth it. Utility that you will rarely use is not utility, in my opinion.


What are you smoking? Blood Parasites will still function exactly the same and MAYBE proc a heal a dozen times in a five minute fight, they're terrible in their current implementation, more often than not they despawn without ever reaching the 20 stacks required for a proc.

Like I said, while a fun talent, it's a terrible talent.
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85 Troll Druid
7415
Why the points in virulence? Particularly in the diseaseless setup. I thought it didn't affect any blood abilities except maybe BB? It seems like those 3 points could go into Hand of Doom or abom's might or BCB, depending on if you want a bit more utility or a bit more threat.
This is going to sound really stupid (because it is) but the Virulence is mainly for Blood Boil. If it misses, it still consumes the Rune and doesn't apply Scarlet Fever. It also helps with D&D in situations where you need it.

Hand of Doom and Blood-caked Blade are both a bad joke. BCB in particular provides less than half a percent of extra damage, even when you are running Diseases all the time. It is never worth investing in.


So basically I'm right and it's a crappy talent, but the other options are worse. Awesome.
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85 Orc Death Knight
4300
What are you smoking? Blood Parasites will still function exactly the same and MAYBE proc a heal a dozen times in a five minute fight, they're terrible in their current implementation, more often than not they despawn without ever reaching the 20 stacks required for a proc.

Like I said, while a fun talent, it's a terrible talent.
I'm smoking reality. The amount of healing that Blood Worms contributes is both substantial and an important part of our utility at 85. Healer mana will matter. Blood Worms is great for exactly the same reason that Glyph of Rune Tap is mandatory - it's healing that the Healers don't have to do.

I'll try and find the numbers that were posted on EJ that show how significant it is.
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85 Orc Death Knight
4300
So basically I'm right and it's a crappy talent, but the other options are worse. Awesome.
Yes. Unfortunately you are right. Virulence still existing is something we have been giving negative feedback about through the entire Alpha and Beta, but it seems they're set on making us spec into it instead of get it passively like Paladins.
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90 Human Death Knight
10315
What are you smoking? Blood Parasites will still function exactly the same and MAYBE proc a heal a dozen times in a five minute fight, they're terrible in their current implementation, more often than not they despawn without ever reaching the 20 stacks required for a proc.

Like I said, while a fun talent, it's a terrible talent.
I'm smoking reality. The amount of healing that Blood Worms contributes is both substantial and an important part of our utility at 85. Healer mana will matter. Blood Worms is great for exactly the same reason that Glyph of Rune Tap is mandatory - it's healing that the Healers don't have to do.

I'll try and find the numbers that were posted on EJ that show how significant it is.


Blood Parasites are pretty good, in a low overhealing environment. I ran some tests and found this out (what I put on wowhead):

From my testing it is X stacks*5% of worm health is the amount healed to each ally in range.

Each worm I spawned had 14246 HP, 8 stack healed for 5698. I had a ghoul out for one test and it got same heal, so the total heal isn't divided across number of targets healed. Which can make it a very powerful heal for melee in a 25 man raid. Especially if in Cataclysm healers won't be overhealing so much, the worms will be able to help top off melee and the tank (if the boss isn't to big to put them out of range).

Even dual wielding 1.4 sec swords, I couldn't get more then 3 to spawn at a time even that was uncommon but one was nearly always up and average heal was 6 stacks. Seems to be an increasing random chance for each stack applied for it to pop 5-6 was the norm with low as 4 and as high as a 12 seen even though I wasn't at full health.

It seems worm must be in combat for it to pop, I don't know if it will still heal if killed while out of combat, hard to test. Need to find some sort of environment damage that could do the damage needed in the 20sec or less time span.
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85 Orc Death Knight
4300
Still trying to find those numbers on Blood Parasite. Blar!
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84 Blood Elf Paladin
4635
awsome!
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85 Orc Death Knight
4300
Amazing guide. I wouldn't have known about diseaseless without this

Although... without diseases or pestilence, the spec is pretty faceroll imo. Just spam death strike, heart strike, and rune strike? Ehh... Well and keep up scarlet fever
It's more simplistic but I wouldn't say it's faceroll. There is some nuance to it, as one of the things you want to try to avoid is Death Strikes that are too close to each other to avoid Blood Shield clipping the Death Strike heal as much as possible.
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