Friday, November 21, 2008

Drinking for Two

Last night I went through the two Dragonblight instances, AZ-Nub, and Old Kingdom for the first time. This is the third time tanking in Wrath, and I think I've learned something very important.

Starting with Rage is a huge boon. My current spec drops 2 points of Furor for Improved Mark of the Wild. This is good for soloing. This is fine for Cat DPS, where lag renders some of Furor's full bonus useless. For bears, this is damn near unacceptable.

Now, sure it may be fine for some people. But the groups that I lead are firecrackers. They go for the throat straight out of the gate, and if I'm to feel like a real tank (that is, actually have aggro) I need rage. And I need it NOW. I miss the 10 points at the start of Enrage. When I can't get that, and Furor doesn't pop, I'm screwed for rage. Sure I could sit there and keep shifting until it procs, and I've done that before, but I've had situations where I've shifted six times without a proc (supposedly a 0.4% chance of happening, but statistics is a poor model for randomness in a short term, particularly pseudorandomness,) all while the rest of the group is waiting for the pull.

This spec also corrects a flaw with my last one: I didn't take max ranks of all the talents I took. It's sort of a compulsion of mine.

That said, I'm going back to 5/5 Furor and also dropping Infected Wounds for Intensity. At least at the stage I'm in, threat generation is much more important than the mitigation provided by Infected Wounds, and in raids, it should be even less important as I have a Warrior there to Thunderclap. Also, I'm moving away from Shredding Attacks (which has seen little to no play at this point, oh how I'll miss thee...) and filling out the rest of Rend and Tear. The resultant spec should be satisfactory soloing, and much better in tanking.

The Big Bear Butt was right. My initial gut instinct was right (though I don't think I ever gave it words.) Intensity is huge. Very important for those first few seconds, especially if you have DPS who are above the curve (my Ret Pally is simply amazing, even for a Ret Pally.) Maybe I wouldn't need it so much if I weren't four levels below the hunter. Maybe I wouldn't need it so much if my Ret Pally, who's six levels below the hunter easily out-DPSes him. I'm okay with that though. I just want my Intensity back.

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