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9-19-2010 @ 8:17AM
'Off tank' is an out dated term/mindset that isn't really used inside the tanking community any more. You have one tank, you have two tanks, co-tanks if you will. Considerate, professional tanks share the different tanking roles on each boss. Most of the time, the non-boss tanking roles are the more fun, more challenging parts to play anyway.
9-19-2010 @ 8:28AM
I feel the same way. Most guilds I known of the tanks are just as capable/geared, as the other.
9-19-2010 @ 8:33AM
It may be an outdated idea, but it's still around and kicking. Do a search for "off-tank" in the wow tanking forums and you'll find many ocurrances. I agree this concept should be gone, but doesn't look like it is yet.
9-19-2010 @ 9:04AM
In our guild, the "OT" as it were, is usually the guy with the DPS set who switches to DPS for Valithria 10 and Rotting Frost Giant weekly. Yes, all tanks are equal in ICC... but some are more equal than others.
9-19-2010 @ 9:32AM
Actually, it is used inside the tanking community. Off-tank is now just a general term that means the person who isn't on the boss/main/big mob; i.e. the tank that is running around. Esentially, from an encounter point of view one could look at it like this:Main Tank is the "threat" tank who's soaking up the big hits and letting the dps go wild.Off Tank is the miscellaneous tank who's not so much battling threat all the time as he is stopping adds/dragons/flies/cakes from annoying and/or killing the raid. While not STRICTLY correct for defining their role, the terms are stuck. By and large no one's offended or indeed annoyed if they're the OT anymore, since arguably the better tank should be the OT anyway.
9-19-2010 @ 10:57AM
This is exactly what I was coming in to post. Personally, I tend to use the terms "boss tank" and "add tank" for a lot of fights. There are some times--like Sindragosa--where I'll refer to the "main tank" (the one who is on Sindri through the first phase) and the "off tank" (the one who will be trade-taunting once she's grounded), but it's by no means a universal term anymore. There have been plenty of fights in Wrath where the "off tank" has the much more challenging job.FWIW, I'm a Protection Warrior in a hardcore endgame guild.
9-19-2010 @ 11:21AM
I'm mostly with Ced, but more based on fight design than anything. Like when doing a VoA pug, someone asks "who's main tank and who's off tank" and it literally makes no sense since Toravon is a taunt-switch fight. Same goes for Lady Deathwhisper, Saurfang, Festergut, and Sindragosa. Blood Queen and Marrowgar require the soak tanks to be just as sturdy as the aggro tank, and everyone is an off-tank for Dreamwalker. Of course, if you look back to ToC, you'll see a much more MT/OT schematic, with about half of the instance having a clearly defined Main Tank (part of beasts, Jaraxxus, Anub).Maybe I'm reading too much into it, but it just seems like Blizzard has been getting better at designing encounters where the second or third tanks are much closer to equal, and are quite well involved in the fight. Likewise, it comes down to mechanics almost as much as gear for determining who does what tanking job. The Keleseth tank on BPQ isn't the one with the worst gear, but the one who's most capable of strong ranged threat, a DK or a paladin (go go Hammer of Wrath on the 1hp non-empowered prince). Warriors are simply the best offtanks for LK due to unlimited taunts and the hugely-but-rarely useful Safeguard. We'll stun the Horrors in P1 while the hunter tranq's away their enrage, and we're better at soaking the ghosts in P3.
9-19-2010 @ 1:47PM
"Off-tank" is only a dated term because of Blizzard's raid designs in Wrath. Naxx had plenty of OT opportunities; Ulduar had a few. Only real tanking encounters that have been situationally different for an OT versus an MT has been Putricide and LK, and Putricide was a freaking vehicle fight for OT. Hopefully they'll move back to a BC-era tanking model for fights in Cataclysm.And yes, I personally loved being off-tank back in the day. MT was all about being geared and soaking huge hits... OT was the clean-up crew. It was frantic and fun. I can't even begin to tell you how boring it is to stand in place and taunt on rotation, or pop cooldowns once every three minutes.
9-19-2010 @ 5:13PM
From my point of view, the MT requires better gear, so he can hold threat on the boss and let the DPS go nuts, and so he can soak up the big hits. The OT requires more skill to run around, pick up and kite adds, pull aggro off healers and dps, and generally be more situationally aware. In cases where gear level is equal, the more skilled/experienced tank should be OT.
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