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Posts with tag Prot

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

Pimp My Profile: Derongar, protection warrior

Welcome to Pimp My Profile, the column in which the staff turns zeroes into heroes. Don't think you're performing where you should be? Not sure how your class/spec is supposed to be gearing up? E-mail us with your Armory link, and you might be next to receive our help!

I WANT TO RAID GOOD. Please, teach me to raid gooder than I already raid.

While I believe that your gear is pretty solid (at first I was confused by the lower stamina but then I realized you'd logged out in arms spec but tanking gear) there are a few places that can be adjusted.

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Pimp My Profile

WoW Rookie: Leveling a paladin tank

New around here? WoW Rookie points WoW's newest players to the basics of a good start in the World of Warcraft. For links to all our tips, tricks and how-to's, visit's WoW Rookie Guide.

Want to level your paladin as a tank? You got it! Before the Dungeon Finder tool was launched in December, finding level-appropriate instance groups was well nigh impossible. Occasional knots of newborn death knights might putter about in a favorite Burning Crusade instance to scoop up some gear. The rest of the pre-Northrend instances remained ghost towns, populated only by speed-running level 80s who were farming or running low-level buddies through some quick levels. But the Dungeon Finder has re-invigorated the instances of Azeroth, Outland and beyond. What does that mean for leveling players? If you love to play in groups and instances or if you're looking ahead to raiding and want to lay down your skill base now, you can.

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Filed under: Paladin, How-tos, Instances, Features, Leveling, Guides, WoW Rookie

Class Q&A: Warrior

Just days after the Druid Class Q&A, the blues have seen fit to post the Warrior edition. Look for in-depth analysis from our very own Warrior expert, Matt Rossi, soon. This purpose of this post is to get the news out there to you, dear readers, as fast as possible. Here's my very brief summary:

  • Historically, Warriors have been dominant in tanking and competitive in DPS and PvP. Balance is in a "fairer place" now.
  • Arms and Fury need a "hard look." They are happier with the Prot tree.
  • "Arms is supposed to be about weapons and martial training and feel 'soldierly.' Fury is supposed to be about screaming barbarians in woad."
  • They still want to get rid of stance penalties (like increased incoming damage in Berserker) eventually.
  • In the future, Prot warriors will generate more rage through doing damage. Long-term, they need "a better solution to rage generation."
  • "Block needs to be a percentage of damage blocked in order for the stat to do what we want" (though the frequency of block, and avoidance in general, would probably have to come down to compensate).
  • They want tanks to not ignore DPS stats quite so much.
  • Warriors have too much downtime when leveling.
Read on for the full Q&A with Ghostcrawler and friends.

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Filed under: Warrior, News items, Classes

Raid Rx: 10 clutch healing and tanking abilities

Raid Rx has returned from retirement! Every week, Raid Rx will help you quarterback your healers to victory! Your host is Matt Low, the grand poobah of World of Matticus and a founder of No Stock UI, a new WoW blog for all things UI, macro, and addon related. This week, we examine the relationship between tank and healer. More importantly, we look at the raid saving cooldowns that can mean the difference between a boss kill and a wipe.

I read a post last week on the Orly Factor. It was about communicating with healers. Now if you visit the blog, the first thing you'll discover is that it's a Warrior tanking blog!

But Matt! Why on earth are you reading a tanking blog? Have you forsaken us?

No, I have not. I've always been first and foremost a healer. However, this does not mean I do not pay attention to tanks. The relationship between tank and healer is a harmonious one. A tank places their lives in the arms of their healers. Healers have to pray to Elune (or whichever deity you happen to follow) that their tanks are exceptional at pissing off mobs.

Two way communication between tank and healer is a must. If not cultivated or exercised properly, your team will face difficulties down the road.

There is one particular topic I want to zero in on.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Priest, Warrior, Tips, Raiding, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, Raid Rx (Raid Healing)

Paladin changes in WoW Patch 3.1 PTR build 9733

A new build was pushed to the patch 3.1 PTR yesterday, and while the list of changes wasn't huge, there are a few significant ones for paladins:

  • Seal of the Martyr/Seal of Blood now add 48% of weapon damage, up from 22%, to all your melee attacks as holy damage. However, the Judgment was changed from 16% of AP + 25% of spell power + 26% of minimum weapon damage to 11% AP + 18% SP + 26% min weapon damage.

In other words, the bonus damage per attack was roughly doubled, while the coefficients of AP and SP on the judgment were cut by 30% (approximately).

The general expectation is that this will keep overall damage pretty much the same, while reducing burst damage. This makes the seal play a bit differently in PvP – it's no longer going to hit like a truck when you judge, but you'll get more consistent damage out of it (edited). A benefit of the change is that you won't see quite as big hits on your health when you judge the seal: more survivability in PvE, which is something the blues have shown concern about with respect to this seal.

There was one other change: a new talent called Divine Guardian was added, at tier 4 in the Protection tree. Note that this is not the same as the old Divine Guardian, which was reworked and renamed Divine Sacrifice. I do really like the icon, so I'm glad they're reusing it, but the naming is slightly confusing.

Patch 3.1 brings us Ulduar, dual specs, significant changes to all the classes, and more! We've got you covered from top to bottom with our Guide to Patch 3.1.

Filed under: Paladin, Patches

Raid Rx: Will dual spec affect your healing squads?

Raid Rx has returned from retirement! Every Thursday (usually), Raid Rx will help you quarterback your healers to victory! Your host is Matt Low, the grand poobah of World of Matticus and a founder of PlusHeal, a new healing community for all restorative classes. This week I explore dual specs and the effects it will have.

The dual spec Q&A was posted earlier in the week and Mike's got a nice summary listed.

Let's get right down to it. How does dual spec capability affect raid healing?

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Priest, Shaman, Wrath of the Lich King, Raid Rx (Raid Healing)

Changes coming to Paladins in patch 3.1

As I'm sure you've seen already, Eyonix dropped more class changes, Paladins being amongst this latest batch. Not many Holy changes, only minor Ret changes, but a whole crapload of Protection changes. Delicious, delicious Protection changes. A lot of the Protection changes serve a dual purpose- the changes are pretty good steps toward making Protection Paladins PvP-viable like Protection Warriors are becoming, but those same changes make the tree even stronger in PvE than it already is. It's beautiful.
This is very, very awesome. It's a wonder this didn't happen earlier, actually. I think many of us expected this to happen back in the Wrath beta, but instead it was turned into a 5 point talent in the Protection tree. The unanswered question is whether or not we'll get the full 5 talent points baseline, or if we'll still need to spent talent points to improve it. Personally, I'm going to assume we'll get the 10% BoK baseline, it's the only way this would even remotely make sense.

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Filed under: Paladin, Patches, Analysis / Opinion

Stepping away from +threat

Threat is at the heart of tanking. However, it's totally hidden from the player, and many players don't understand it well or at all. A thumbnail sketch: every point of damage you do causes 1 threat. Every point of healing you do causes 0.5 threat (unless you're a paladin, in which case it's 0.25 for reasons I've never fully understood). This is base threat; many classes have threat modifiers. Rogues, for instance, have an innate 30% reduction to threat. Warriors and Druids get 30% improved threat in their tanking modes (Defensive Stance/Dire Bear Form); this will be raised to 45% in LK, I believe. Paladins get 90% extra threat for their Holy damage from Righteous Fury.

Then there are various tanking skills which have special threat modifiers. Sunder Armor is one that has been around forever; it wouldn't cause much threat inherently, but it's got extra threat built in. Lacerate and Revenge are other examples.

In short, the way Blizzard has traditionally made tanking work – made sure the tanks are causing more threat than everyone else, so the mobs will attack them – is by keeping their damage low, but raising their threat with threat-increasing auras and threat-boosted abilities. This is not the tack they're taking in LK, based on some trends that have been emerging in blue posts over the last month or two. For instance, Ghostcrawler: "We'd like to get away more from +threat abilities for all classes if we can."

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Raiding, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

Warrior tanking shields in Wrath

Many people are wondering how long their Aldori Legacy Defender or Bulwark of Azzinoth will be lasting them in WotLK. While there will be no definitive answer until the official release of Wrath when items are more or less finalized, we can take a look at the various shield options now and at least get a feel for when they'll be replaced.

We'll compare shields by selecting a few key statistics: armor, block value, defense, and stamina. There might be other statistical factors in each shield, however these four values are the major stats that define a shield's power. We also show the strength on the shields which are coming in Wrath, since that attribute will be playing a larger role for the Protection Warrior post patch 3.0.2.

Read on after the break for a statistical break down of shield options for the Warrior tank, and why the iconic Bulwark of Azzinoth won't be replaced until at least level 77, if not level 80.

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Filed under: Warrior, Wrath of the Lich King

Warriors and Beta build 8885

I'm warning you now, any further reading will contain spoilers for talents and skills for warriors in Wrath of the Lich King. You cannot say you were not warned, if not by the title of the post, then by me now.

Overall, the changes are deceptive. They look small at first, until you really stop and think about them. The biggest changes are also a little baffling, but not necessarily bad. You can't really expect sweeping changes two builds in a row, so it's really not terribly surprising that prot didn't get the big review we've been waiting for to date. On the whole, the changes aren't anything to get worked up over, but they do seem to be heading towards a desire to balance threat generation, and so I applaud them even if I don't think they were entirely successful.

I've dithered enough: on to the changes, concealed from view behind the jump.

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Filed under: Warrior, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Wrath of the Lich King

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: The Climb to 80

It took several days longer than I expected, in part due to there being one less zone than there would be live, but last night I managed to level my tauren warrior to 80 in a mix of blues and greens, all of his PvP epics and Karazhan gear having been finally replaced. Admittedly, in some cases I deliberately chose a sidegrade merely to be able to say that I'd changed my gear or to try and preserve my crit rate from level degradation, so it's safe to say that if you have Kara epics or better they'll certainly last you into level 74 - 75, but by 80 I had only one piece of gear from before the beta still intact. And that was a really nice trinket that I kept mostly for the proc.

I figure, with the new talents and abilities stated to be coming before Wrath, I should discuss my experiences to some degree.

Based on the leveling experience, I can tell you various things about gear and spec in Wrath that I would have felt premature talking about before now. However, since it would be spoilertastic, it will go behind the jump. Just imagine me flapping my giant white arms now. Also, while it's not the subject of today's post, I am kind of concerned that Battle Shout won't stack with Blessing of Might anymore. That seems like a nerf. We'll see how it plays out.

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Filed under: Warrior, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Instances, Expansions, Leveling, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors, Wrath of the Lich King

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Starved for Choice

The current Wrath of the Lich King beta has had a lot of ups and downs. At present, since you can't say any class is finished and talents and abilities are subject to change at a moment's notice, all that can really be done is to evaluate what's currently the situation with the class. (As a warning, everything beyond this sentence will most likely be full of spoilers.)

My general overview would be 'flawed, but with a good deal of potential'. I've covered my favorite talent to death, and the situation remains the same as it did last week, so I'm not going to belabor that particular deceased equine. I should point out that I'm still using the talent in my current build at level 75, and doing very good DPS in instances, tanking, and soloing with it too. I try and respec every day and have that day be dedicated to testing out talents and abilities, but when I decide to push for the next level, I always go back to a heavy fury TG spec. The burst damage potential of TG itself is half of the equation, but the other half is how wildly improved Bloodthirst is. To put it succinctly, I can now regain about 1000 health every 6 seconds. Sometimes, I actually end fights healed from when I went into them. Mortal Strike will probably remain the king of PvP, but for leveling I cannot imagine not taking bloodthirst now. You will bandage maybe one fight in ten. You will eat to get a food buff. It's that good.

I'm going to try and go over as many comments from last week and answer what I can, and when I can't answer them I'll try and be up front and say so. I've not had a chance to do everything: I'm trying to level a shaman and a warrior to 77 as fast as possible and that's while still MTing for my guild for a full raid schedule.

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Instances, Raiding, Leveling, Talents, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors, Wrath of the Lich King

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: When warriors work together

Matthew Rossi would like to apologize for any confusion caused by this post being on a Thursday instead of Totem Talk. He...well, he forgot it was Friday. That's all there is to it, he just plain forgot what day it was. He apologizes (okay, I apologize, I'm him, I'm sorry, I seriously thought it was Friday) and will have Totem Talk up for you tomorrow.

Like I said yesterday, kills happen when the whole raid pulls together. Yes, this is blatantly obvious, but it still bears examination. One of the debates that's raged now and again in the comments to this column has been over the usefulness/utility of DPS warriors. As a tanking warrior myself, you may have expectations that I don't like DPS warrior, that I look down on them or think myself superior to them because I'm a main tank. Nothing could be further from the truth. My guild's two DPS warriors are a tremendous asset to the raid, they have solid knowledge of the class and its mechanics both DPS and tank, they're valuable sounding boards for every fight and they help make tanking easier in a variety of ways.

So today I'm going to talk about DPS warrior/Tanking warrior synergy. How come I'm so pro-DPS warrior when I hate DPSing in raids and love tanking? Because while yes, a bad DPS warrior is a liability (just like a bad player in general is a liability) a good solid DPS warrior is not only a great source of, well, damage per second, he or she is also an asset to a tank.

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Bosses, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Titan's Grip!

Titan's Grip is confirmed -- dual wielding 2h weapons. Rossi will love that. -
Michael Gray from WoW Insider's coverage of the WWI dev panel.

To my mind, the news from the Worldwide Invitational is big enough to push back our discussion of DPS gear for the starter raider. (We most certainly will talk more about it, believe me.) Several statements from the invitational need discussion for us warriors, I think, especially worth considering how they may well change the design philosophy of the class.

Also, yay, Diablo III. It's especially appropriate that we get the news about Titan's Grip on the same day as we get our spiritual forefathers, the barbarian class, back. So, you may ask, what exactly was said about warriors that was interesting?

  • Wanted to make the class feel more like Warcraft III -- put the Bladestorm Shockwave in, and tweaked Arms and Protection.
  • Shockwave will help with Prot damage problem
  • Titan's Grip is confirmed -- dual wielding 2h weapons.

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors, Wrath of the Lich King, Worldwide Invitational

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