Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Tanking Feedback from Strath run.

Build used - (no annihilation because oblit isn't worth using as any spec, which is a big problem)

Video part 1:;11609495;/fileinfo.html
Video part 2:;11609912;/fileinfo.html

Note: A lot of the damage output in this video is skewed by the serpent sting bug from hunters. I often end up doing twice as much damage as I normally would, as does the rest of the group.

Synopsis of the instance run:

"This isn't a fast run or speed clear by any means (which I tend to enjoy more). This was all of our first attempts at this instance, and it was just a pug. I went with a warlock buddy from Tich, Socio, and we just joined up with 3 random dudes.

You can see the disparity between tanking spell casting bosses and hard hitting bosses. The first boss was actually the toughest, mostly because he randomly shoots these chains at someone and stuns them for the duration. This makes the first boss fight much too reliant on having a resto druid healer (basically someone that can keep heals going while CCed). The chains effect is physical, so grounding totems don't work. It is rather funny to watch, though, since after I died, the other DK ressed me as a ghoul. I then ended up killing the boss like that. =]

The second boss was a pushover, as I could mitigate a ton of his damage.

I'm not really sure what the third boss did, but it didn't seem too bad.

The last boss lays out a lot of AOE magic damage, and randomly mind blasts/sleeps a target other than the tank. Acclimation is a huge boon here. In fact, I'm more inclined at this point to prefer acclimation over Anti-Magic Zone. As I've stated before in an earlier alpha synopsis, acclimation requires no runes, no global cooldowns, and is constantly being refreshed on you and your raid. It's fantastic, and it stacks with frost aura."

First thing's first:

My mitigation when defensive cooldowns aren't up could be a bit better, as you can plainly see against the first boss. This might be skewed, however, due to a slightly over-tuned first boss in the instance (he hits noticeably harder than the other 3, and can completely stun your only healer for several seconds, leading to certain death without a resto druid.

One thing I've noticed, is that on single targets, my threat is really great. Then I began to wonder while tanking things... I realized that there were several situations I ran into where I gladly would have given up a frost strike or death coil or two, to have some sort of RP drain that boosts my defensive stats for a while, at least while my healer(s) get CC'd or silenced somehow. Even if it only lasted for 5-10 seconds or so, that would be great. Perhaps something that could be used to drain RP and boost parry chance greatly while it's active? I dunno. Maybe each tree could have something of it's own flavor.

Blade Barrier: This is kind of a big one for me. I really like this talent when it's up, but it seems like a pain to get going and even keep going sometimes. A lot of GCDs need to be spent on other things very often, and I normally don't want to blow through my runes as soon as possible. I often found that it's not even active very often, whereas my other first tier tanking talents are always going. While it's a fun and interesting concept, I've found that it's often too unreliable to have it going all the time, or even when you need to. If it falls off, I might have to completely jack with my rotations a bunch just to get blade barrier back up, which means I'm spending weird rune combos and wasting GCDS that might be needed for other things to get it (re)activated. In the end, I'd rather see this just become more friendly to use, as well as have the buff last longer, or just give me 10% parry chance flat out.

AOE threat for the most part was fantastic. It didn't help that I ran with another howling blast friendly pug DK, but it worked out very well other than that.

Another thing that's notable to mention: DK tanking, when I'm not getting torn in half by meathook, is FUN! Lots and lots and lots of fun. This is, by far, the most fun I've ever had on a tanking class. I can dish out of ton of damage, and can handle AOE pulls very well. That, to me, is perfect. Personally, I'm not a fan of really complicated pulls that take a lot of coordination to set up in 5man runs (MGT?). In raids, I can understand it (still don't prefer it, but I understand the reason for it). I'm the kind of person who likes to go in and pull as much as I can, really try to push the player skill of the group, and come out on top at the end. The DK really makes that possible with it's AOE agro holding and emergency mitigation capabilities. I really like that a LOT. I cannot possible stress that enough. I'm having more fun with this class than any other that I can remember in a very long time, and that's saying a lot.

AMS feels great vs caster bosses now. I really feel like an anti magic boss tank now. It seems like you guys took my old post very seriously (

Some other issues I have:

Blood of the North: I love this talent and I hate it. I don't think it's serving it's original purpose well at all, simply because obliterate is really, really lackluster right now. That, and death strike as frost is just terrible. :( I feel compelled to take it, though, because it will give me more frost and unholy runes (mostly frost that I care about for icy touch spam). Actually, I take it because it lets me basically get rid of blood runes for my next rotation. I might be alone, but I'm simply underwhelmed by both blood strike and obliterate. Every time I go through the double blood strike part of my rotations, I feel like I'm just doing it to go through the motions and get to the fun stuff. Blood strike and obliterate just aren't fun. That's really what it boils down to. Blood strike is one of my most used and required abilities for rotations, yet it's also one of the least fun. The only reason I really care about having a blood rune is for strangulate in PvP, and I say in PvP, because bosses are typically immune to strangulate in PvE.

Unbreakable Armor: I'd like to see this boring skill become a little more fun. Up the parry chance to 20% or so, and also give it a new, interesting mechanic. Such as: Enemies who strike you while active become frozen for 5 seconds, and are afflicted with frost fever (Howling blast and chillblains synergy anyone?). You know, make it fun! Right now it's just really boring to use, and I can't even tell if it's working all that well. I already have enough spell damage mitigation as frost from frost aura/presence, acclimation, and AMS. I'm OK with Unbreakable not working against spell damage, as long as it becomes more fun to use against melee.

Army of the Dead: I think the coolest part of this spell is the animation. :) Seriously though, it's obvious that it needs more tweaking. I don't like the channeling aspect, and I'm still unsure if I like the fact that they taunt things and just die in one hit. I also don't like the fact that they have about 3,600 HP and die to a single AOE. Could use some work.


LostHero said...

great stuff as always, thanks jayde!

maybe you could/should ask blizz to change Blood of the North to work with ALL bloodruneskills, or at least work with Pestilence as well (because you use it very often during multiple target tanking!).

5/5: "you have a 100% chance to turn your blood rune into a deathrune after you used one of your blood runes"

sounds better doesnt it?

and i also agree with you about blade barrier...
maybe they should just change it to a flat 5% more parry talent like ALL(but shams/droots) other melee classes (even huntards lol) have.

ah and i have a question:
i saw a screenshot where you are in shat and showed your gear/stats (was also able to see some of your gear during your strath movie) and that screen says that you only have 6,82% dodge.

is this WITH the 5% talent?
i saw other shots from you some weeks ago where you only had 2% dodge... this sounds very broken to me?

losthero said...

or blood of the north should give an additional passive effect like "your bloodstrikes deal 15% more dmg" or something similar, because right now with the broken obliterate this talent is VERY weak for 5 points so deep in the tree.

if it would be a tier 2-3 talent it would be fine, but ...

btlyger said...

Hey what you said about army of the dead I have heard, a LOT. I'm not 80 yet to test it out, but personally what I would love is mobs that CAN'T die. Kind've like Animate Dead from WC3. Have the summoned ghouls (Or anything, its called Army of the dead not army of the ghouls) fight for like 20 seconds and taunt everything, but be unable to be killed. 20 minute cooldown means it cant be used in arena, so this spell would be awesome for PvE and I guess PvP Bgs too.

Drethis said...

I really wish you would have the Hunter stop using Serpent Sting if it's skewing the information so much. :(

Veok said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Veok said...

Hey, Leiah, is there a place we could e-mail you stuff? Couldn't find one on your blog.

On a separate note, have you given up lobbying for hunters / warlocks forever? or just until death knights are at a decent spot?

alucardhpv72 said...

Hay man i noticed u had alot of pvp gear i was woundering how hard it is in LK to get honor points? i dualed a gnome DK in the inn in dragonblight. Not sure of the name of the temple but i got like 1500 points in like 10mins. I thought u were on USA servers till i noticed the BGs are not open on our servers yet:(

DaGenius said...

I was disappointed with strath, it looks pretty fucking boring.. wave and wave of ghouls and fighting pushover bosses.. I really expected it to be more epic.

BlackKnightOfH8 said...

After watching the second video again I see what you're saying about the skewed numbers.

A 14,554 crit from Howling Blast? I don't think it should be doing that much damage.

Also, do you think with your current stats you might have managed better against the first boss(Meathook)with a blood spec for things like Bloodworms? I mean if nothing else it means you're still getting some health pulled in while the healer is stunned.

Sprigg said...

The links to the files just lead to lead to the filefront home page, error?