An analysis of Warlock Tanking

Warlock
Divinepanda 3 things firstly i never said the very start of vanilla you could tank i just said that in vanilla toward the end bears/pallys were used as Offtanks usually overgeared for the content they were tanking the gear was there just low drop rates

second crit immune didn't come in till atleast late in bc more likely in WoLK not sure of the exact timing because i skipped portions but still in normal current content now even with the prospect of getting crit nothing will 1 shot on crit if you have a tank healthpool solong as you are keeping on top of debuffs. you also seem to misunderstand how damage reduction work when compared to avoidance


Tanking while outgeared/outleveling content does not mean that a spec is viable. We had rogues tanking bosses in MC while we were in BWL back in classic, it doesn't mean that rogues were viable tanks, it just meant that we had passed the threshold where mechanics of those fights actually mattered all that much.

Second, crit immunity was in the game pre-WotLK. It was granted by the defense stat, and was the reason that tanks other than warriors weren't viable as raid tanks back pre-BC.

As for whether or not passive tanking, in the context that I'm trying to describe but am probably failing at getting across, I'm not sure. Passive damage reduction doesn't necessarily need to lead to a boring "I'm just going to stand here and let someone wail on me" tank that could be effectively played by one of those drinking bird desktop things. I'm not sure if stacking an avoidance stat would be appropriate for the class, and might make it even more complicated and increase the time to implement this. Perhaps a more take X% less damage across the board from a passive damage reduction, but then healing or shielding yourself to prevent spike damage or to recover the damage from large abilities. Having to think "should I save fury for a shield in 10 seconds, or do I need to use it for this threat ability" etc. Just because our mechanic could be straight damage reduction instead of avoidance, doesn't mean it has to be "boring." Or at least no more so than a druid stacking dodge, or a DK stacking parry, etc. and having cooldowns/resource dumps to up those particular stats.

And I stand corrected on the fury ward SP scaling. I never really noticed it and had to log in game to check that out. /stupid moment.

@Kruil: Phrases like "Not to sound (socially unacceptable term) but, (socially unacceptable statement)." are so obnoxious. How much raid experience does it actually take to validate one's opinion on the game, might I ask? Must I be 16/16 heroic for this current tier to actually have an opinion on a class I love and have played for ~7 years?
02/16/2013 03:24 PMPosted by Kaizban
i was under the impression that HL didn't gen fury in DA, to be honest i don't pick it because it seems a tad op/limited i know odd combo how can something be both OP and limited, its kinda like a putting bull in a china shop to break 1 plate, part of tanking is picking the mob/s you want not just pulling the room and its kinda pointless in single target fights, that and i don't think tanks should be channeling.
I know what you mean with that. HL has been really nice for me as dps, but the channeling would screw with avoidance. Maybe the solution is to remove the channel from DL/HL, like with Rain of Fire for Destro. If HL just applies a DoT, then we can focus more on the other parts of our rotation, and avoid the channel entirely.

as for spirit gear its a good idea but alot more time consuming short term effectivly all the DA skills would have to be modified to incorporate spirit as well as a new mechanic specificly for locks, how would you do it? (please don't say like avoidance)
I'd just throw in a passive that lets spirit boost our self heals and fury generation. Maybe let it give us hit at a 50% conversion rate, since stacking spirit would starve us for hit.
i might also add mage/shammy tanks were also used in vanilla neither of which could stack defence for crit immune again in no way main tanks but tanks none the less,

maybe if you think about it this way where a pally/dk/war get hit for 90% of possible before armor making crit 180% of possible where locks can be sitting on 40% mastery which is around 30% reduction meaning they are taking 70% or 140% on crit both big difference when you scale the numbers and that gets better next patch extra 10% woot both are before the armor reduction so you need to roughly halve the percentages. so in practice locks can be taking 39.2% damage average while pally/dk/war take 45% on a hit to hit basis, given locks get hit more but hopefully you see the point
correction they said it was not intended, glyph of demon hunting was to test how far they could change things with a glyph

while Ghostcrawler may be lead Dev that does not mean he has final say, in what happens just his words hold more sway then other devs but less then customers also from all the tweets/posts i have found by him he has not said he doesn't what lock tanks, he has however said and i quote

Agree that more tanks = better. Not sure (based on DK, monk) that more tank classes gives you more tanks.
when asked directly to reconsider
IAlso I had long been a supporter of making spirit a tanking stat for locks. That gives exactly the same itemization spread that other dps/tank hybrids have and so far spirit cloth is the solo domain of priests so it would give the gear a bit more varied use.


Is itemization spread really needed though? I mean, aside from trinkets and tier pieces with obvious spec bonuses, BIS feral and bear gear is mostly the same, no? If the problem is just that locks should have a tank stat other than just mastery, then maybe haste could affect dodge. So that it makes more sense for a caster, could call the talent something like "Nether Shift" with some flavor text in the tooltip (and perhaps a visual effect) about partially phasing in and out of the twisting nether to avoid damage.

And if it being passive stat-stack avoidance is too boring, they could give it an active on-use effect for extra dodge with the cd being lowered by haste.
I like and support the idea of Warlock tanking. They already do a pretty good job, if they had the Crit immunity, they would be almost viable. With that and a taunt, there, we have it.

However, if I was to imagine or suggest abilities for the sole Tanking spec, they would probably be those:

Void Strength
Passive - Initial Spec Spell
The warlock draws on the energies of the Twisting Nether, corrupting his own vital forces and magnifying some of them. 100% of all Spirit is converted into Parry rating, and 75% of Intellect is converted into Armor. Also, each time the warlock is struck by a melee or spell attack, he/she gains Void Twist, granting him the opportunity to negate up to 50% of that damage by the use of self-healing effects or Fury Ward. He/she can absorb the damage of five attacks at a time.

Nether Plating
Passive - Level 15
While using a Demon Form, your armor contribution from items increases by 250% and the duration of stun and snare effects is reduced by 35%. In addition, the chance you'll be critically hit is reduced by 6% and all magical damage received is reduced by 10%.

Demonic Rage
200 Demonic Fury - Level 40
The warlock goes into a fel-induced rage, gaining 20% of his Maximum health, increasing self-healing by 15% and regenerating 2% of his health for 10 seconds. While the warlock in under the effects of Demonic Rage, he cannot use Fury Ward.

Fel Heart
Passive - Level 54
The cooldown on your Soul Stone spell is reduced by 5 minutes when cast on yourself. In addition, while using a Demon Form, your Soul Stone spell, if cast on yourself, will reduce damage received by 30% and increases healing received by 15% when below 25% health. This effect lasts for 10 seconds and can only occur every 90 seconds.

Hellfire Cleave
250 Demonic Fury - Level 70
Summons a burst of fel flames that ingulfs all enemies around you, dealing Shadowfire damage. It also leaves the debuff Void Burn, that deals damage over 10 seconds based on the damage absorbed by your Void Twist.

Well, those would be SOME of them. They're not perfectly tuned or balanced, it was just to give an idea of what I think would be cool to see in a Warlock tank.
i personally dont like most of your suggestions for a combination of reasons being terribly OP and not meshing well with warlock flavor but i will commend you on the effort you put in remember locks for all else remain casters

in tank spec/DA
void ray = void wave(think carrion swarm attack style + damage boost)
drain life becomes a DoT with with better scaling healing
spirit gives something like
02/16/2013 04:03 PMPosted by Fuzzles
a passive that lets spirit boost our self heals and fury generation. Maybe let it give us hit at a 50% conversion rate, since stacking spirit would starve us for hit.

locks could merge with there pet, dont think like saccing think more like soullink only you share 1 body the pet halve remains killable then you pet juggle dependant on situation imp=mobility void=inc melee damage felhunter=inc magic damage felguard=multi target succy=single target(GoSup effected not sure how) that way we remain a pet class
soul fire needs to be more tankish and a hell of alot less nukeish
real taunt
locks could merge with there pet, dont think like saccing think more like soullink only you share 1 body the pet halve remains killable then you pet juggle dependant on situation imp=mobility void=inc melee damage felhunter=inc magic damage felguard=multi target succy=single target(GoSup effected not sure how) that way we remain a pet class

I'm kind of lost on the pet merge thing. Are you suggesting something like

Demon Soul (instant cast, 30s cooldown)
You fuse souls with your demon, merging your health pools and empowering you with some of your demon's traits. While your souls are merged, your demon takes 50% reduced damage from all sources. Recasting cancels this effect.

Imp: Increases movement speed by 10%, grants access to a reversed Flee, which allows us to escape to our imp.
(Original spell: http://www.wowhead.com/spell=103133)

Voidwalker: Armor increased by 20%, grants access to Shadow Shield. (http://www.wowhead.com/spell=115232)

Felhunter: Magic damage taken reduced by 20%, grants access to Devour Magic.

Felguard: Area of effect damage increased by 20%. On impact, Demonic Leap deals Shadowstrike damage to all targets within melee range, stunning them for 3 seconds.

Succubus: Single target damage increased by 20%.


That's my interpretation, at least. Was it close to what you had in mind?
yarp something like that but more of a possession type thing

imp being more for kite tanking so maybe dropping the CD of demonic leap

hunter eats 20% magic damage healing you attacks, have a ???% chance to silence target for 3s

voidy yours plus being able to disarm

succy gives 20-40% mirror of your direct damaging attacks

felguard makes your Demonic slash cleave but drops its damage by 15-30% voidwave spreads corruption/drainlife dot

merges healthpools,but you have to keep track of fel energy,mana and DF. no base damage reduction either. dropping below 25% kills the demon and grants ???% heal something not OP, around 15-30 seems about average
edit: preferably with some way of looking at the lock to see what demon that is possessing them
yarp something like that but more of a possession type thing

imp being more for kite tanking so maybe dropping the CD of demonic leap

hunter eats 20% magic damage healing you attacks, have a ???% chance to silence target for 3s

voidy yours plus being able to disarm

succy gives 20-40% mirror of your direct damaging attacks

felguard makes your Demonic slash cleave but drops its damage by 15-30% voidwave spreads corruption/drainlife dot

merges healthpools,but you have to keep track of fel energy,mana and DF. no base damage reduction either. dropping below 25% kills the demon and grants ???% heal something not OP, around 15-30 seems about average
edit: preferably with some way of looking at the lock to see what demon that is possessing them

I'm not sure about the merging of health pools, just because Soul Link does exactly that. A flat 20%-25% health buff seems a bit better.

What I'm seeing is the potential for something like Demon Soul from Cata (a CD that grants a powerful, short-term buff based on your current demon), with a weaker passive version that's disabled while the active effect is on CD.

The idea of merging is a good one, but it does complicate things a bit as far as utility goes. Maybe instead of physically merging, we only merge souls. Same effect, but our demons are still out and able to use their specials. If we bake a passive into the merge that transfers our demon's threat to us, it makes holding threat much easier.

Your idea about the pet sac when low on health is nice, but I have my own that might also work.
Embrace of the Void (passive)
When a damaging attack lowers your health below 25%, 100% of your threat is transferred to your demon and you receive 40% increased healing for 10 seconds. If you have no active demon, you are instantly healed for 20% of your maximum health and take 20% reduced damage from all sources for 10 seconds.


Your comment about Fel Energy gave me another idea. I'm pretty sure you were talking about monitoring our demon's Fel Energy, but what if it wasn't our demon's? We could have Fel Energy as a resource while in our tank stance. Mind you, this is all speculation.
02/16/2013 09:04 AMPosted by Kruil
Not trying to sound elitist but everyone so far that I've seen that want warlock tanks, don't have much raiding exp on their warlock character.


We've been tanking Vek'lor and Leotheras since the content was released. I'd like to see it expanded beyond certain fights.

Also, does this mean we get searing pain back?
lol I tanked both those back in the day... searing pain spamming was BORING..... the one challenge was putting up your CoD so it popped at the right time.

I love it the way lock tanking feels right now.... I have played all the tanking classes (monk only in beta) and they all have their feel and their place. The lock is distinctive and unique and will clearly have its perks and drawbacks. Mastery is already a passive mitigator so I'm ok with that I guess, and spirit could effect the potency of your obsorbs/healz and be an active mitigator. I still really like the idea of a living seed type mechanic where your shield would grant a seed that would heal on dmg, but really there could be countless ways of implementing it. Bliz got really creative with monk mitigation mechanics and it has a lot of flavor. With many ways of mitigation (both active and passive) that really hadn't even been considered before.

My only real concern with things as they are now, regardless if being a "real" tank, is that channeling/casting anything with a long cast time is potentially disastrous in that it could get you locked out of a school. Sacrificing your dmg output is fine to make us a tank.... but glueing us to the ground for drainlife/soulfire is very punitive, especially when your soulfire hits for less then a (non crit) death strike, only heals you for 10% of the dmg done (talented), is also a proc and a 1.8 second cast. In pve, soulfire really isn't even worth casting while in DA leaving you with drain filler which is well..... boring. So my big push is still for bringing back the Siphon life dot and making SF worth casting in DA (maybe even a .5s cast would be enough). I think that would really flesh out the rotation.
02/15/2013 01:45 PMPosted by Keelon
Warlocks can't tank, herp derp


You can fantasize about it as much as you want because there are numerous ways to make it work, but Blizzard could also make warlocks heal, shamans tank, and turn rogues into ranged DPS. But it's not gonna happen.

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