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Posts with tag Defensive-Stance

Cataclysm: Reaching uncrittable

For those of you who don't know much about tanking, we're going to talk quickly about a stat that won't exist in Cataclysm. This lowly stat is called defense rating, and it's something that tanks need quite a bit of. The nice thing is that it's on just about everything that tanks wear, which means at higher gear levels, we've got it coming out of our ears. The primary point of this stat is to reduce the critical strike ability for incoming melee hits from the standard of 6% to 0%. Druids currently don't need this stat, as they've got a talent called Survival of the Fittest, which means that bosses don't need to drop defense leather.

All in all, the stat is kinda boring, as while it does still do nice things after you reach the defense cap of 690 rating (or 540 skill), most people don't bother with it and stack stamina or other avoidance. So Blizzard decided that they're going to get rid of it.

Around BlizzCon 2009, we were told that the crit reduction we formerly got from defense rating was going to be tied into things that were available to all members of each tanking class. Examples used were baking it into Bear Form for druids, Righteous Fury for paladins, Defensive Stance for warriors and Frost Presence (or rather, Blood Presence in Cataclysm) for death knights. That means that if a retribution paladin or arms warrior wanted to tank, all he'd need to do was swap to vaguely appropriate gear (or just over to a sword and shield), pop his respective abilities, and away he'd go. That's not how it appears things went down, though.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Death Knight

The Light and How to Swing It: Tanking stat changes in Cataclysm

With the Light as his strength, Gregg Reece of The Light and How to Swing It faces down the demons of the Burning Legion, the undead of the Scourge and helps with the puppet shows at the Argent Ren Faire up in Icecrown.

Since paladins are last on the list for the upcoming Cataclysm class previews due to how Blizzard ended up doing the development schedule, we've got another week and a half to wait for our details. I'm not picky as long as it gets done, so there's no reason to really grumble other than having to wait an extra week. However, I thought I'd go over some of the things we do know about Cataclysm for tanking.

Blizzard has mentioned that they're going to rethink tanking cooldowns and has previously asked for feedback on some of the abilities we currently have -- but to what end, we're unsure at this time. What they have told us about thus far is how some of the avoidance stats will be working in the coming expansion. Essentially, the only avoidance stat that isn't changing is dodge, with the others either being overhauled or removed. Let's take a look.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It, Cataclysm

Shifting Perspectives: Tanks and the barrier to entry


Every week, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting druids and those who group with them. This week, we have cause to reflect on something written by our esteemed colleague Archmage Pants: "Tanking is an interesting thing. It makes you hate everyone else in the party."

It comes as no shock to a longtime player that WoW's social culture is riddled with a number of real-life counterparts, and one of the more troublesome is something called the barrier to entry. In real life, this refers to the difficulty of becoming a qualified professional in a given field, and there are some jobs where the barrier to entry is very high indeed.

Take neurosurgery, for example. Ideally, you want to be completely sure of someone's aptitude for the job before you let them take a buzzsaw to your skull. Society relies on the grueling education and residency required to be a neurosurgeon to weed out anyone prone to use of the word, "Oops."

While there's nothing in WoW that comes close to the seriousness of getting a competent surgeon, most players would acknowledge that there are similarities between the RL and in-game version of the "barrier to entry." I'd argue that the comparison is strongest when you're discussing tanks. Tanks, and more importantly, beginner tanks who could potentially ease the tank shortage that causes lengthy queue times for DPS in the Dungeon Finder, have to hurdle a series of problems in the effort to become geared and experienced. Some of these problems are the result of deliberate design choices on Blizzard's part, but the larger share is the consequence of a playerbase that needs tanks but is (ironically) hostile to beginners.

Everyone wants an experienced professional. Nobody wants to be there for the learning process.

And if you're a beginner tank, there's a lot of crap in your way that Blizzard didn't put there.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

The Queue: Sometimes you just want to be a superhero


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Alex Ziebart will be your host today.

Preambles are for suckers. Let's get this party started.

Anarax asked...


"Okay well, I have a bunch of friends and apparently they think City of Heroes is 10x better than WoW. How can I get them to change their minds over to WoW? The main reason I want them to play is because I plan to make a reroll Hardcore Raiding Guild, in June, and it's always good to have a small group of players to start with. The problem is though that one of them tried out WoW and is actually influencing the others, telling them that WoW is "too repetitive, too serious, and full of rage." He is the one telling the others to play CoH."

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Queue

The Queue: Locke

Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Adam Holisky will be your host today.

Do you ever get the feeling that WoW is like some sort of purgatory? That you're trapped in an endless loop of hellish deviations intent on consuming the very soul from which all things good and pure spring forth from? That this game is indeed nothing but the true game which ends all games, and like Sisyphus or John Locke you'll be stuck pushing the boulder up the hill towards a higher level for the rest of your life?

And with, let's throw a little social philosophy in your faces.

Adoisin commented...

"I hate people telling me how to change my spec and how to play. I'm a mage who puts out between 2-3k dps, depending on how bad my lag may be at the time. Sure, I may not have the cookie cutter spec. But it's my game, I am paying for it, and I will play how I want. Want me to change? Fine. Start paying my fee and you can tell me how to play."

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Filed under: The Queue

Patch 3.1 PTR build 9658 Warrior changes

Matthew's caught up in the tangle of this thing called RL, so don't be surprised to have a different voice going over the Warrior changes this build. Don't worry, though, it looks as though most of the changes this round are aimed squarely at PvP, so I'm covering for him in the meantime. I'd like to call this build the Brown Pants Edition for PvP Warriors. Are you ready? Get a pair of brown pants, because you'll need them.

Battle Stance - Increases the armor penetration of all your attacks by 10%.
This is a straight up buff, and because Armor Penetration is a better PvP stat now than it is for PvE, this is clearly going to help. Considering armor reduction effects are now percentage-based, this buff is going to help quite a bit. Nothing exciting yet, right? Right. I hope you've got those brown pants on, because the next one is downright insane.

Shattering Throw *New Skill* - Throws your weapon at the enemy causing [ 50% of AP + 12 ] damage (based on attack power), reducing the armor on the target by 20% for 10 sec, and removing any invulnerabilities. 25 Rage, 30 yd range, 1.5 sec cast, 5 min cooldown
I just had to put that in bold letters and underline it. Aren't you glad I told you to wear brown? Warriors are now one of only two classes that can break a Paladin's Divine Shield or a Mage's Ice Block. It's a baseline ability, which means that all Warriors will have access to it. This improves Warrior viability in a Paladin-dominated Arena environment substantially. It's on the same cooldown as the aforementioned invulnerabilities, as well. This means that every time Paladins or Mages put them up, a Warrior can demolish it. Just in case you missed it -- Shattering Throw also deals damage and reduces armor (and it's likely used when in the armor penetrating Battle Stance!). Not only do you remove their precious invulnerabilities, you spank and strip them, too. That's just naughty.

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Filed under: Warrior, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, PvP

Warrior and DK threat bug hotfixed

My own Death Knight is not quite up to raid tanking yet; I've got a few more levels to go on that one. However, some players have noticed that DK threat, especially on single targets, seems a bit low - significantly lower than the other three tank classes, to the extent that the tanks were having trouble keeping threat against high DPS.

It turns out that there was a slightly complicated bug involving Frost Presence, the foundation of DK tanking. It went like this:

  • Some aspects of Frost Presence don't go away when you die, and some do (this is the bug).
  • Part of the threat boost, however, does go away when you die.
  • When you res and come back without changing presences, the game doesn't reapply Frost Presence, because it sees that you already have some of the effects of it.
  • However, you still don't have all of the threat boost.

So potentially, DKs who die and come back without switching to another presence (Blood or Unholy) and then back to Frost were missing out on 15% of the 45% threat that Frost Presence brings. This has been hotfixed now, so there is no further need to worry about it. If you saw your DK threat go up a lot yesterday, that's probably why.

Ghostcrawler adds that "it is likely" that Defensive Stance was also being affected by this bug, although I haven't seen any prot warriors complaining about their threat since 3.0 hit.

Filed under: Bugs, Raiding, Death Knight

All the World's a Stage: Class is in session

All the World's a Stage is skipping class (gasp!), and playing with roles every Sunday evening.

Our spells are shiny and bright, well worth using in more than just combat situations! Last time we talked a bit about this idea, as well as how druids, hunters, and mages could use their spells to entertain their friends. Today we turn to the remaining classes: priests, paladins, rogues, shamans, warlocks and warriors.

Each roleplayer would do well to sit down and examine his or her action bar to pick out those spells which can be used outside of combat, and think of whatever opportunities imaginable to make good use of them. Chances are, if you put your mind to it, you can come up with some really creative ideas.

Buffing, for instance: You've got these beautiful abilities that can benefit anyone around you, no matter what class or level they are. If you're going to bless them with such a neat thing, why not say something about it while you do so? You can say, "<Deity Name> guide you, sir!" or, "you look pretty dumb -- have some extra intellect!" or whatever expression sounds right for your character.

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Filed under: Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warlock, Warrior, Humor, RP, Classes, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying)

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