Ask The Devs #9 - Tanking (Questions)

General Discussion
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Are there any plans to make threat stats more relevant to tanks again? Maybe by tying mitigation into our attacks successfully hitting the target, like Shield Slam keeps our block chance up, Revenge keeps our parry rating up, etc.
Are there any plans to make tanking less passive?

Assuming a competently played tank:
- our survival (aside from a few CDs) is entirely in the hands of our healers.
- our threat is never really in our hands (a bad threat rotation WITH vengeance > a good threat rotation WITHOUT vengeance).
Long ago, there were "unorthodox" tank specs, such as the shaman tank with the shield, the moonkin tank (moonkins had the same ammount of armor as dire bears), and the warlock tank (typically tanking with magic resistance rather than armor). Hunter and warlock pets also served as tanks as the need arose. Virtually all of these are gone today. Does Blizzard intend to allow non-traditional tanking in the future, or do you consider these to be non-viable and distracting from the pure tank specs?
Dk's and Druids are both at a significant disadvantage when tanking hard hitting adds which was also a problem in the past, are you planning on ever addressing this?
Bears are still incredibly drab to play, beyond not being able to see our gear, nearly all of our abilities have next to no noticeable visual effects. Any plans to address this with some flashy new animations?
Are there any plans to return hit/expertise to valuable tank stats? I hate missing the boss so much, but I can't justify losing the amount of mastery I would need to cap my hit rating.
Tanking is a high-pressure role. The eyes of the entire group are upon the tank. Any failures are usually blamed on the tank(and the tank can often blame themselves, even if nobody says anything). I often will own up to my own mistakes, just so the tank is aware that it wasn't their fault. I hate this default condition. What kinds of ideas are blizzard considering to reduce the crushing sense of responsibility on tanks, and the inherent problems of the LFD tool which allows people to act incredibly poorly toward other players with no consequence?
Could it be possible to allow other classes to be able to tank. Hunters for example, mainly choose the spec that is currently crunches the best numbers for DPS. Many seem to change in the drop of a hat to whatever the "best" spec it. In other words, currently they don't seem to need three specs when the numbers are crunched and the best spec is chosen. Why couldn't say BM be a new tanking spec?

It is our understanding that you don’t want tanks to be mastery capping (pertaining to Paladins and Warriors). Yet we haven’t seen major changes on the PTR because of it (other than a reverted change for Paladins), and Paladins and Warriors will be block capping with fair ease in Firelands if mastery stays in its current form. Unless changes happen, many tanks see this as a significant advantage towards Paladins and Warriors. That being said…

Can we get some insight into what is in store for tank masteries in the future?
It would seem that the best way to make Tanking gear carry Hit/Expertise rating that proves viable into future content is to reverse the trend on all gear to limit said gear to only four areas of numbers. +Str, +Stam, +Dodge, +Mastery.

Can something please be done about finding a way to make our gear actual choices, with enjoyable choices, rather than merely the Wrath-like builds that seem to be forming soon due to the issue of EH stacking seeming quite likely in Firelands?
Is there anything in the works for rage at the start of a pull? We have shout for some initial rage, but what about the second and third pull?

I would like to see charge in prot stance sooner when levelling, but it really isn't that long before you have it.

For additional trash pulls, I really recommend dragging the last one to the next fight via or heroic leap/throw - you don't lose any rage that way, since you stay in combat, and if you're REALLY lucky, you can spread the previous rend rather than applying a new one to the new group.
Is there any work being put in on the "Tab" function? It seems rather schizophrenic right now, ignoring mobs right next to me and finding something across the room is a common problem.
I'm seeing a lot of questions about how one kind of tank doesn't have one thing that "all" the other tanks have, yet class "homogenization" is a cardinal sin for many (perhaps even the same) forum posters.

How do you keep even tanking classes feeling different while simultaneously ensuring they all have the kind of tools necessary to succeed in 5, 10, and 25 man encounters? What kind of changes do you guys and gals contemplate in the dark of the night in hopes of making us all stop bothering you?
As a warrior, I love the way I play, but when I finally hit 85 with my DK in blues and greens, I felt like my warrior was chump change in comparison. Is there a reason why as tanks warriors are SO low on Damage output before Vengeance ramps up, and why even after Vengeance ramps up are still substantially lower than the rest of the pack?

Obviously this has very little to do with gameplay mechanics outside of threat, but warriors already have the hardest time with the startup threat, and deal a huge amount of damage less than the alternatives. For example, my DK is getting chain 40k crits with Deathstrike, where my warrior can't break 40k with Shield Slam without Shield Block active, which is very depressing.
With the desire to make tanking more appealing and fun have you ever considered removing the standard Large Pack or Mobs used for trash between Bosses?

I do not mean to remove trash but perhaps consider making Trash into less per pack and just make them harder.

The reason none of my Tanks currently enjoy tanking is AOE and trying to wrangle a whole pack of Mobs and keep the random group members from pulling the wrong one. I think removing 4 -5 6 mob type trash pulls would ease the burden that Tanks AND Healers feel.

The most enjoyable Tanking is Raid Tanking I just cannot get past the 5 man stage of tanking due to these characteristics. If each trash pull was more and more like a Boss pull I feel Tanking would become more fun by far.

So again Have you ever considered this type of Approach?
One of the goals for Cataclysm was to reduce the ridiculous Heroic Strike spam situation for Warrior tanks (and I guess druids, to some extend). With the abundance of rage and the new Inner Rage, we seem to be right back where we were in Wrath. Any plans to address this?
My question is a little odd, but as a pally tank I would usually take care of AoE packs by laying down a concecrate, then spamming HoR until the mobs die, and when the holy power bar is full, I'd put a WoG on myself to help out the healer, but with the CD on WoG now, I've either had to just use SoR or just hold my holy power for the time being. I'd also use my WoG to help out with fights where there's a lot of damage coming my way or lots of AoE damage to once more help with the healers.

My question is this: Could you enable part of a Prot Pally's talents to remove the CD on WoG, and is it possible to allow prot pallies to have more use for holy power other then just having it for a small handful of spells, maybe for tanks an AoE ability or power taunt or something.

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