Food for thought
While I have been experimenting recently with how effective it is to tank with mitigation oriented gear as apposed to threat oriented gear, I have had the pleasure of assisting my friend, and guildmaster, Zee with gearing up her raiding toon. While doing this, several topics came to mind that I feel should be shared:
“Main as raid toon” v. “Alt as raid toon”
Zee’s main toon is her mage Zerena, but this isn’t her raiding toon, oddly enough. Due to various reasons, Zee leveled a resto shaman named Zeronemo, who serves as her sole raiding toon. I don’t know of many players that follow this school of thought, but after thinking on it, I found some pros and cons to both.
Main as raid toon:
- Pros: Your main gets good gear; receives more play time; gets all of the achievements; strong sense of connection with one character
- Cons: Your main wears gear because it’s got good stats, not because it’s cool; risks being overplayed; may need race/profession changes to stay “competitive”; may have limited guild selection, if you’re trying to stay PvE “competitive”
Alt as raid toon:
- Pros: Your main can whatever gear you feel like wearing, regardless of stats; can be in whatever guild you like to hang out with, regardless of their raiding schedule, setup, etc
- Cons: Your alt gets all of the dungeon/raid achieves instead of your main; may lead to weaker emotional connection with your main
Conclusion: Do whatever works best for you! If you like being a particular character, no matter what you’re doing, then using your main toon as your raider would probably be a strong choice. Likewise, if you could care less about attachments to any one character, then maybe using an alt (or several) as your raid toon is the way for you.
Knowing your class
It’s harder than it sounds, especially with the shear amount of content that’s been added into the game via Cataclysm and the hotfixes flying around left and right. At the same time, knowing your class’ every ability in and out can really make the difference when it comes to being a strong player. For instance:
- Protector of the Innocent – Although this talent no longer works with targeting yourself with your heals, this talent briefly made paladin tanks nigh unstoppable, especially in PvP. Because this talent is in the holy tree and involves healing (something that some tanks seem loathe to do, for whatever reason), it could’ve been missed by many players.
- Presence of Mind + Polymorph – While PoM doesn’t work in combination with teleporting or making portals, it DOES work with polymorph. Is your tank charging headlong into battle, having forgotten that Poly has a cast time? Bam! Insta-sheep.
I’m sure there are more, but those are the ones that come to mind, right away.
Persistence with Triage
Is also harder than it sounds! There’s nothing worse than constant wipes on a quest, in a dungeon/raid, etc. Well, except for the cause being something extraordinarily obvious in hindsight. Being stubborn enough to continue trying in the face of hardship is a great virtue, but it means nothing if you can’t look at your mistake and say to yourself, “What went wrong here?” This is where addons like Recount are handy.
If you suddenly get one/two shot and don’t know why, then Recount will happily inform you that <insert attack here> wiped the floor with you. Possibly twice. If nothing out of the ordinary happens, but success still eludes you (oh, you temptress), then consulting Recount can shed light on potential issues with dps, healing, unnecessary damage, etc.
The tricky part is always fixing what’s going wrong, but doing that is impossible if you don’t know the source of the problem!