TGAPGeorge – Warrior Tank
I read a post by Namthe on his blog, The View From Down Here about Tanking gear and perception. Perception being that although we have new spells and abilities, access to new gear, and are joined by Death Knights, Druids, and Paladins as effective Tanks, Tanking itself has not changed.
You know what? He’s got a point.
Back in the day — which was a Tuesday. Fun fact — and before my time, “Tank” was synonymous with Warrior. There weren’t any other options. Over time, we’ve been giving things to help us tank more effectively — yes, even other classes to help out — but the fact remains our job, our mission is the same as always. Or, as Namthe puts it:
What has changed is our tools. We now have bigger and more varied tools at our disposal. The tools doth not make the player – a good tank is a good tank regardless of what abilities he has to hand. Tanking is all about spatial awareness, positioning and quick reactions (when it’s necessary to save someone). That hasn’t changed.
He’s absolutely right. And here’s the proof: by November 18th, 2008, the guild TwentyFiifthNovember had cleared all of WOTLK content. All of it in three days. That’s every heroic, full Naxx 25, and Malygos.
And a lot of their gear was still level 70.
How did they do it? Skill. No excuses, no needing the “proper” gear, no whining about being nerfed. Just plain, unadulterated skill.
So what does that mean for us Tanks? It means we need to practice. We need to read and study. We need to know our class, abilities, and job through and through.
- How to keep aggro
- What’s happening to you and your raid at all times
- Situational Awareness (Different from above)
- Communication and coordination
- Keeping the healers alive
- Keeping everyone alive
It doesn’t matter how much DPS you put up — other than for aggro. It doesn’t matter if a Mage keeps riding your threat. It doesn’t even matter if you yourself die at the end. The only thing that matters is you get your job done and get it done well.
For you have done your job and accomplished your mission ONLY when the boss is on the ground, Dead.
Here is another quote from Namthe, adapted from Chuck Palahniuk:
* You are not the buttons you press to keep aggro.
* You are not your class.
* You are not the gear you wear, nor the buffs you give out.
* You are not a beautiful and unique, heavily armored snowflake, and your toon is the same collection of fleeting pixels as everybody else’s.
If you know Fight Club, then you’ll understand.