How Can I Be a Better Prot Warrior?

Warrior
Hallo. New warrior tank here. I haven't tanked since Wrath and am now getting back into things.

One thing I notice whenever I try to go into normals is that I'm getting bet on by a lot, even if I pop any Shield spells. I'm also feeling really ogrewhelmed (get it?) by all the buttons we have now. I can count no more than 8 spells that have a CD of a minute or more.

My usual priorities are Shield Slam (Sword and Board) > Revenge procs > Sudden Death procs > spamming Shield Block if it's a fight that deals with white damage (boss / noncaster trash mobs) or Shield Barrier (for ability spammers)

Sorry if it's an overused critique request. I really like the feel of warrior, but feel kinda squishy, even as a tank.
Actively use Demoralizing Shout and Enraged Regeneration. Don't just save those abilities for times were you're going to die. That's what Shield Wall and Last Stand are for. This is the biggest mistake I see every single tank do. They never actively use their short defensive cool downs in fear that they will need them in the short future.

Demoralizing Shout and Enraged Regeneration are both on short 1minute cool downs. I usually use them once per pack but I rotate both of them

I always use Shockwave and then while the enemies are stunned, I generate as much rage as possible to use Shield Block. When enemies are unstunned, I use Shield Block and when that expires, that's when I use Demoralizing Shout or Enraged Regeneration.

If you have a good group you will probably never need to do this, but in bad groups you will have to adapt to this kind of play style. Slow DPS will basically allow you to have Demoralizing Shout for every single pack. Bad healers will also force you to make the most out of your defensive tool kit.
I took unyeilding strikes over sudden death because you get more out of your devestate which is what you will be spamming, you get more consistant procs for heroic strike then you would for sudden death. and when fighting bosses or high level mobs at low health execute uses to much rage and sudden death procs waste a GCD..

not sure how viable this is but that is what was suggested to me by the best tank in my guild.
I'm in the same boat as the OP.

I'm really questioning my rotation.

I took sudden death because between using Revenge/Shield Slam and Dragon's Roar/Thunder Clap I'm getting a ton of procs for Sword and Board and Shield Slam CD reset that I really only use Devastate as a filler, and I get plenty of procs for Sudden Death. So I feel like I'm constantly choosing which spell to use my next GCD (Execute, Revenge or Shield Slam?) on and finding myself wondering if I have too many spells available.

I did make another post in the Tanking forum sorta asking the same question, but maybe I use Heroic Strike inbetween my GCD as a filler and am dumping too much rage into it instead of using Shield Block.

Maybe US would keep me from dumping too much rage into HS?
Keep shield block up always, reflect as many spells and interrupt as many as you can. Use shock wave defensively as well.
11/28/2014 01:31 PMPosted by Boneslam
Keep shield block up always, reflect as many spells and interrupt as many as you can. Use shock wave defensively as well.


Is there any serious consequence in taking Dragon's Roar over Shockwave?
Is there any serious consequence in taking Dragon's Roar over Shockwave?


Dragon's Roar is slightly better for bosses (which are immune to stuns), Shockwave is much better for adds/trash. Don't plan to always use one, swap then out depending on the fight that is giving you trouble.

Don't forgot Heroic Leap can be a strong defensive cooldown. It is a last resort since it will mess up melee dps putting the hurt on the bad guys. Still it can cut out most or all incoming tank damage for a few seconds which can be huge.
Honestly your rotation without execution should be packed with little to no downtime, so drop that talent and put it into something useful (unyielding strikes). A lot of the other talents depend on the situation,
certain fights may call for a switch in talents or glyphs so I won't go too in depth on this issue. Revenge and shield slam should be on cool down. Between casts of those make sure to use shield block, you should never have 2 stacks unless mechanically the fight calls for the use of shield barrier. In my personal opinion they should either make shield barrier better or let other classes do all spell casting bosses. Because at the moment shield barrier is pretty useless at the moment.

A harder part of the rotation is getting use to unyeilding strikes and balancing rage between heroic strike and shield block or shield barrier. As if we don't have enough to worry about, watching procs, cooldowns, fires burning the floor away, unyielding strike stacks, picking up adds, interrupting the correct spell is a lot for most people to do effectively every time! I encourage you to experiment with a good User Interface where everything you need to see is easy to see, simple and in the same general area. But back to balancing rage, shield slam and devastate spam will statistically generate more rage than you fiddling around with revenge. If you find yourself needing more rage, try letting revenge go so you can fit in an extra shield slam proc or two. Ideally you never want to be in this salutation because revenge is great for threat, a high chuck of damage, and our main AOE. Thunderclap once or twice just enough to make sure you hold aggro. It's one of the best spells for picking up random adds that run by, and use it mostly for that. The damage isn't good enough to spam on cool down in most fights.
So ultimately this is what I've concluded from the information I've gathered:

I should avoid using HS unless proc'd by Ultimatum (Saves Rage for Shield Block)
Do not use Execute. (Unless excess rage or burst dps at end of boss fight)
I should use SS and Revenge on CD - Devastate as filler to proc SS - and use Revenge on SaB proc
Keep fewer than 2 stacks of Shield Block at all times.
Thunderclap/Shockwave for AoE

And probably going to get HR because it fits into the already existent rotation.

Am I taking away the correct information here?
11/28/2014 09:59 AMPosted by Hamilton

Sorry if it's an overused critique request. I really like the feel of warrior, but feel kinda squishy, even as a tank.


Many times while getting geared you will have to use defensive cool downs on trash. Quite often you will find yourself taking more damage from trash than the boss. Which makes you feel squishy. I too am a new warrior returning to the game and will attempt to give you knowledge I've learned along the way. If you or the healer is not geared or optimized correctly trash will seem like it is hitting very hard. Every tank and healer gearing in heroics or normals has felt this. Tanks are now dying at much slower rate opposed to getting crit twice on a boss fight and you're dead. The game has been shifting away from this meta and going into a meta where fights are harder because of mechanics opposed to being hard because of a gear cut off or stat cap. You will be able to tell once you go up five to ten item levels at which point instances will become a cake walk.
11/28/2014 05:18 PMPosted by Adythan
So ultimately this is what I've concluded from the information I've gathered:

I should avoid using HS unless proc'd by Ultimatum (Saves Rage for Shield Block)
Do not use Execute. (Unless excess rage or burst dps at end of boss fight)
I should use SS and Revenge on CD - Devastate as filler to proc SS - and use Revenge on SaB proc
Keep fewer than 2 stacks of Shield Block at all times.
Thunderclap/Shockwave for AoE

And probably going to get HR because it fits into the already existent rotation.

Am I taking away the correct information here?


For the most part you've got it! HS is a big part of your DPS, so ignoring it until Ultimatum proc would be negating a good bit of DPS. Fit HS in when Ultimatum procs along with when you excess rage and when unyielding strikes stacks to 5-6.

If somehow you aren't getting rage, don't use HS unless you have ZERO shield blocks available(Or you know you have a lot of rage coming in soon).

I won't go into this now unless requested, but big cool downs are just as important as the tanking rotation.
11/28/2014 05:28 PMPosted by Oghoebree
11/28/2014 05:18 PMPosted by Adythan
So ultimately this is what I've concluded from the information I've gathered:

I should avoid using HS unless proc'd by Ultimatum (Saves Rage for Shield Block)
Do not use Execute. (Unless excess rage or burst dps at end of boss fight)
I should use SS and Revenge on CD - Devastate as filler to proc SS - and use Revenge on SaB proc
Keep fewer than 2 stacks of Shield Block at all times.
Thunderclap/Shockwave for AoE

And probably going to get HR because it fits into the already existent rotation.

Am I taking away the correct information here?


For the most part you've got it! HS is a big part of your DPS, so ignoring it until Ultimatum proc would be negating a good bit of DPS. Fit HS in when Ultimatum procs along with when you excess rage and when unyielding strikes stacks to 5-6.

If somehow you aren't getting rage, don't use HS unless you have ZERO shield blocks available(Or you know you have a lot of rage coming in soon).

I won't go into this now unless requested, but big cool downs are just as important as the tanking rotation.


Now you're bringing up HS with US. Is that the best route? I was kind of getting the feeling that HR would just fit into the normal rotation of using Shield Block > Shield Slam. Or do I not benefit from the DPS gain there as much as I would with US+HS?
I'm sure what you are getting at. It really doesn't matter when you use HS in your rotation because HS is on a separate GCD than the rest of your spells on the rotation. HS just needs to be used in these three cases: 1. US procs = use HS (free use) 2. You have enough rage for your main defensive ability shield block on cooldown = use HS 3. When unyielding strikes reaches 5-6 stacks = use HS (free use at 6 stacks for 5 seconds). You should NOT be using HR, save that for glad stance and PvP. Unyielding strikes is a much better choice is all situations.
try kiting with thunderclap/heroic leap or even popping intimidating shout if you're out of cooldowns.. and shockwave is OP
I recently came back after quitting in early Cataclysm, and I can say that Wrath tanking and WoD tanking are not much different in terms of style. Where you once had more rage generating abilities, you now have more cooldowns and the playstyle revolves more around effective and efficient usage of them. That is why they're all fairly short.

Against physical damage: Shield Block > Barrier. Always try to keep Block up against physical mobs. It mitigates tremendous damage, especially with critical blocks.

As a tank, mitigation is your number one priority, unless you're easily doing pulls without needing cooldowns. I recommend dropping Sudden Death for Heavy Repercussions, as it's also a great upfront burst talent. Furthermore, this is also because Shield Slam will generate rage, where Sudden Death will require a GCD that doesn't reward any, and the damage Execute has isn't tremendously high over what you should already be dealing with your Shield Slam/Revenge.

Our interrupt cooldown is longer (Shield Bash = Pummel), and Spell Reflect is roughly the same. This leaves us rather weak against magic overall. Shield Barrier is your only real defense against it beyond Demoralizing Shout or Shield Wall, but unlike Shield Block, it can be used with a minimum of 20 rage. It barely takes the sting off of most spells, but your only other option is to CC the target. (Shockwave, Intimidating Shout--perhaps the silence glyph for Pummel/Heroic Throw.)

Do not be dismayed to need 1-3 minor cooldowns for pulls. There are plenty to go around and some are only 1 minute. (Enraged Regeneration, Intimidating Shout, Ravager)
11/28/2014 10:17 AMPosted by Ryanebonhart
Actively use Demoralizing Shout and Enraged Regeneration. Don't just save those abilities for times were you're going to die. That's what Shield Wall and Last Stand are for. This is the biggest mistake I see every single tank do


This is by far the worst advice I've ever seen given. Enraged Regen shouldn't be used at 100%. That's just a waste. Actually watch your health and time it properly and it can be big. Same thing with Demoralizing Shout. As it is a 1Min CD and a weak DR. It's still a CD that should be timed as well as every CD you have. Let's say you pull a big pack and you know you're about to get straight gaped. Use it proactively instead of just blowing it randomly.

This is like saying a Monk should use Guard on CD even if they're not going to take damage.
11/29/2014 01:18 PMPosted by Suffokate
11/28/2014 10:17 AMPosted by Ryanebonhart
Actively use Demoralizing Shout and Enraged Regeneration. Don't just save those abilities for times were you're going to die. That's what Shield Wall and Last Stand are for. This is the biggest mistake I see every single tank do


This is by far the worst advice I've ever seen given. Enraged Regen shouldn't be used at 100%. That's just a waste. Actually watch your health and time it properly and it can be big. Same thing with Demoralizing Shout. As it is a 1Min CD and a weak DR. It's still a CD that should be timed as well as every CD you have. Let's say you pull a big pack and you know you're about to get straight gaped. Use it proactively instead of just blowing it randomly.

This is like saying a Monk should use Guard on CD even if they're not going to take damage.


Hes right. You just repeated what he said. Proactively.

No where did he say that you should use it on cool down, he said you should use it actively instead of an oh !@#$ button.

E: A lot of good advice in this thread though. I personally use SD but is there really a difference between this row of talents? Last I heard there wasnt. Also I stray from US, seems im noy hiting devestate less and less with the amount of revenge procs I get.

I also run with a healer I know so he knows to hold his wings till he sees me roll through my cd's first. Armor pots and health pots have been a huge help. Also an addition to heroic leaping out to get a quick breather from getting trucked, yiu can also intervene to a ranged and charge back in after a few seconds. Warbringer has been handy to extend the breather.

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