Warrior Tank Leveling Guide, Part 3

I took a bit of a break this week from leveling the warrior and leveled my priest. I decided with the new expansion a week away, I had better have at least one character at 85. It only took me two days and one zone, Deepholme, to get from 82 to 85. I did it, I’m happy I did it. I miss tanking.

So, since I didn’t make enough progress to get to another milestone on the little warrior tank, I wanted to step away from the specific leveling guide and give some general tanking tips.

Note: These are for first-time tanks leveling through random five-man instances. Please don’t take this as raid tanking or heroic tanking advice. This is for beginners.

Basic Tanking concepts.

Facing is the concept of pointing mobs or bosses in the direction they need to be. Facing has two uses: 1. To get bosses or mobs with a direction attack such as cleave or fiery breath to damage you and only you; the one who can take it. 2. To allow melee DPS to have more time attacking the target.

When I start a fight, I charge in, move past the mobs and then turn around. This puts the mobs between me and my party with me facing the party. This way, the melee has less distance to cover before they engage, the mobs are facing away from the party and I can easily see if any peel off of me to attack anyone else. It’s neat and since I do it every time, even random groups get used to it pretty quickly.

Pulling This means getting the fight started. You should be the first in there. You have charge, use it to give yourself an extra second or two to gain aggro. Like I mentioned above, I use the same pulling strategy every time for consistency. If the mobs are spread apart, use Heroic Throw on one and then charge another and hit Thunderclap. This will cement your aggro before the DPS even get started.

Priority If you’re are confident enough to be the leader, you should be marking. It only takes a second but it helps focus the group immensely. A focused group means less damage to you and less tendency to have mobs running around all over. Generally it’s best to kill casters first, healers if there are any. They can do the most damage and cause the most disruptive effects.  You’ll get used to what casters look like and the variations of their names pretty quick. When the casters are down to 25% health or so, move to the next mob in your order to start gaining aggro on them.

Rotation There are two general rotations you want to use, one for a single pull like a boss and one for a group pull.

Single Pull Rotation Open with Charge and Heroic Throw. Apply Devastate. Revenge. Shield Slam. Spam Devastate and wait for Revenge and Shield Slam procs. Hit Shield Block when you have the rage. Use Thunderclap only to apply the debuff. If the boss casts, interrupt when you can.

The Group Pull Rotation is the same except use Thunderclap when it’s off cooldown. Revenge hits multiple targets now so it’s high on your priority when it procs.

Final Thoughts

Tanking is about priorities. What mobs to kill first, what abilities to use, what dumb dps to save or let die.

My best advice is to practice. Don’t get too stressed out when things go wrong. Think through different pulls and decide what you would do in different situations. Put yourself in a place that when things go wrong, and they always will in the chaotic world of the random instance group, you’ll know what you need to do.

Tanking is like 95% confidence and 5% Shield Slam spam. You’ll do fine.


One Response to “Warrior Tank Leveling Guide, Part 3”

  1. “Single Pull Rotation Open with Charge and Heroic Throw. Apply Devastate. Revenge. Shield Slam. Spam Devastate and wait for Revenge and Shield Slam procs. Hit Shield Block when you have the rage. Use Thunderclap only to apply the debuff. If the boss casts, interrupt when you can.”

    In my opinion, Heroic Throw is a wasted Cooldown. Heroic Throw generates no rage and is less damage than Shield Slam. Also starting with Devastate is not optimal. A Shield Slam proc in this phase would only cause a Shield Slam with a little more rage and the reset of the CD wouldn’t be used. This is the old rotation, where you had to look at Threat per Rage and Heroic Throw and Devastate had low rage cost.

    I would suggest a single target rota like: Charge(20), Shield Slam(40), Revenge(55), Berserker Rage(65), Shield Block(5) after that, if neither Shield Slam or revenge is usable, devastate.

    If of cooldown i would suggest starting with a shout before charging for a even shorter time until shield block could be used.

    Our new goal is to shorten the time until our active migation could be used.

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