Monks are squishy you say? Well let's fix it!

General Discussion
In another thread, monks are cited again and again as the squishiest of the tanks. I can understand why this would be, because monks rely heaviest on AM of the five tanks, and AM is new in the tanking system (except for death knights of course)

Let's look at the big weakness first.
Warrior: Heavy armor, Shield, Sentinal, Critical block (Very high armor rating, strong block mechanic baseline)
Paladin: Heavy armor, shield, redoubt (very high armor rating, strong block mechanics baseline)
Druid: Leather armor, thick hide, savage defense (Low armor rating modified by thick hide becomes competative with plate tanks baseline, however, savage defense, their block mechanic, must be actively managed with one button)
Death Knight: Heavy armor, no shield, blood presence armor increase, death strike (the blood pres modifier puts them on par armorwise (nearly) with warriors and paladins. They have no baseline block mechanic, but one of the heaviest hitting powers applies an active shield. This is managed with one button)

Finally, monks: Leather armor, stance of the sturdy ox, a plethora of AM abilities. (here's the big loser in the baseline department. baseline, these guys are essentually combat rouges. They get no armor increase, and really only get the basic damage reduction from stance everyone gets. However, Stance of the sturdy ox allows for "stagger" which moves a percentage of physical damage into a dot)

Well, looking at that, it seems that monks would be pretty weak. The armor difference is enormous, going from 25% vs around 60%. Sure they always "block" but they have to take damage from it eventually, right?

Wrong. The slack is picked up with monks through AM buttons. The other tanks have 1-2 AM buttons. Monks have several. Lets look at them.

1: Blackout Kick/Rushing Jade wind (if talented, essentually an aoe Blackout Kick): Provides "Shuffle," a 20% (huge, often ignored) buff to parry chance and increases Stagger by 20%. This will push our blocked amount to a much higher percentage. Keep this up 80% of the time or higher. You must do this.

2: Tiger palm. Costs no rescources "filler" move. This will do two things for brewmaster: 3 stacks will grant 15% armor pen AND (much more importantly) will buff your next "Guard" ability by 15%. Try to hit this three times before a guard if you don't have it up 15% of that is a significant amount, and your healers will thank you.

3: Guard. This is the big cahuna. This will absorb the majority of damage of one trash pull or will give the healer 5-10 seconds of breathing room. You decide when this goes off, but try to keep it on cooldown. This will range anywhere from absorbing 50k (poor gear, no cooldowns, no TP stacks) to 80k (high gear, engineering ap cooldown (why i went engineering..), three stacks of TP) an 80k sheild is about 1/4 of your entire health pool, and you can throw it up every 30 seconds if you tighten your priority set/rotation!

4: Elusive brawler/Elusive brew. You can stack elusive brawler up to 15, and if you hit elusive brew, you get a 30% (enormous) dodge bonus for 1 sec per stack. Watch this. put a power aura on it. Every time you get to 10 or higher? press it. If you dual wield this will stack very fast, and you'll have a 30% dodge buff every other pull.

5: Purifying Brew: clears stagger damage. If you're doing everything else right, this button is used whenever "stagger" gets to moderate or higher. Make a power aura for it. Once stagger is at moderate, you're taking a dot worth a significant amount of your health over 10 seconds. Be nice to your healer and remove this dot.

6: Gift of the Ox: Melee hates us for this. Pick up the green balls, your healer will thank you. I always try to keep 3 floating that i only pick up if my hp spikes down.

so, there you have it. Monks have to manage 6 rotational AM abilities where the others manage one or two. If all of these are properly managed, however, monks can be fantastic tanks. It's sort of a harder work for bigger payoff kinda deal :)
/equip billy mays

But wait, there's more!

Let's face it, alot of us came over from a plate tank wanting a more active experience. well, we sure as hell got it!

Our tanking stats are very very different now. If you were a druid, well, you get a cookie, none of this is new to you, but for us plate tanks, it's time to re-evaluate our gear (and yes, my trinkets are awful. will replace soon. had no idea how to gear him when i won them)

Here's your new awesome tanking stats, and why.

Agility -> Guard is based off of attack power. Agility has secondary benefiets like crit chance and dodge percentage. This stat is god.

Stam-> meh. have enough. you'll have enough if you get the right ilevel for the content you're doing. Don't worry about this one so much anymore.

Crit -> Elusive brew uptime.

Haste -> Brewmasters are slightly energy/chi starved. our survival comes out of chi. The more haste you have, the more BoK uptime you'll have, the more spare you'll have for purifying brew. Get this to a level where you can purify once every three gcds and keep BoK up, and you're golden.

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