Posts Tagged ‘offtank’


An Alternate Rotface Strategy – 1 Tank

July 18, 2010

So I run a rather special raid group for my hunter on Tuesday and Saturday nights. Chainmail Underpants is a raid sub-group of <Alea Iacta Est>. If you’re not familiar with the Earthen Ring server, suffice it to say that AIE is an EXTREMELY large guild. As in largest guild in existence, to the best of my knowledge. Last I knew, 5000+ accounts and still growing. (Seriously, the guild breaks the Armory and defies all attempts to  try and do a census upon it.)

If you are familiar with the Earthen Ring server, and not in AIE yourself, you’re probably groaning right now, and I’ve probably lost a good deal of your respect. You see, visitors, everyone who isn’t actually in AIE tends to dislike them. Why? Well… it’s such a big guild that they have their own LFG channel, and tend to only raid with themselves. It seems to me that the kind of members who usually PuG with folks outside the guild are often loners who don’t want the accountability of running with guildies. Therefore, the AIE members who run with non-AIE PuGs tend to suck and the guild gets a bad rap.*

For the sake of developing a raid team that can work together, though, you don’t want to PuG every week, even if you’re drawing from the slightly smaller population from within the guild, thus the raiding teams of which Chainmail Underpants is one, and I run with them. These guys are awesome. They work as a team, adapt to new situations, and experiment with alternate strategies all the time. When wipes happen, even for entirely avoidable reasons, no one gets mad or frustrated or starts yelling. If we’ve been wiping on progression for a long time and it’s almost time to stop, we swap to something easier like Sarth3D to pwn and keep up morale.

But I digress… I brought you here for Rotface, no? Long story short- these guys are willing to experiment, and if it works they celebrate it.

The alternate strategy goes something like this:

(Click the image for full size.)

One of your tanks goes DPS, and the other will be holding Rotface in the middle of the room. Then, your hunter swaps to his offtanking offspec, (something like 53/3/15) and does the job of the kiting tank. Hunter can use whatever pet they feel like for the most part, but should preferably be wearing at least PvP pants with a PvP armor kit on them for the extra stamina. Fully buffed in this build with the 25%  buff, PvP leg armor, and a Flask of Stoneblood my hunter can top 40k health, which gives the healers a bit of leeway when you need to run through the ooze.

This setup accomplishes two things:

1) The healers have less heal targets to split their concentration.

Generally speaking, between the 10% kindred spirits running buff and the ability to start kiting from range, the hunter should never come into contact with the big ooze. The only time the hunter is going to need healing is the times when he’ll have to go through a corner of the room currently being swamped by slime from the tanks.

2) Everyone who isn’t a healer can hit the boss.

More DPS on the boss means a shorter fight, shorter fights mean less chance of something going wrong on accident. Nobody goes out of mana, less “Angry Poo-poo” events, and altogether a smoother ride.

Once threat is taken with Distracting shot, and a little bit of damage is put onto the ooze to maintain that threat, the hunter can just move by strafing around the room, damaging the boss with instant shots and occasionally re-stinging the big ooze. In fact, the biggest problem I had the first time I tried this is that I moved too fast for the big ooze and that tended to make it try pathing too close to the DPS pile while trying to catch up. Therefore, occasionally stop and channel a steady or two into Rot’s face. Problem solved. :)

Just keep in mind that when the hunter goes through the slime corner, there will be a need for some healing, so let your healers know when you’ll be entering green stuff. I usually have a druid who shadows me from within the little circle at the center by the boss. This keeps her in range for the times I go through ooze, and makes the fight go smoothly.

SO! I hope you enjoy experimenting with your Rotface setup, and may all your loot be legendary!


Chainmail Underpants is currently 10/12 in ICC. Wish us luck with Sindy!

*As with all generalizations, there are some cases that will fit, and exceptions that don’t. I do realize that perfectly good AIE members may go pugging, and that not everyone on ER actually hate the guild. Please drink responsibly, don’t operate heavy machinery, etc. ^^


A Tanking Primer: Adaptability

August 11, 2009

uldapowWelcome back to the Tanking Primer series here at Going Bearfoot! Here we’ll explore a new aspect of tanking each week for the next several weeks, continuing with today’s topic, Adaptability. My hope is that I’ll manage to stay objective enough to cover tanking aspects without making this a “druid only” resource, and even include things specific to my warrior, paladin, and death knight brethren.

Tanking Primer Table of Contents

1. The Pull

2. Tank Talk

3. Adaptability

4. To be continued…

The World of Warcraft, like the “Real World” ™, is usually in some state of flux, and while you’re tanking there will always be patrols, groups with casters, groups without casters, bugs, lagspikes, awful PuGed people, and Cenarius knows what else. Your job then, is to always be prepared to deal with things, shift around, and make changes on the fly.

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A Tanking Primer: Tank Talk

July 28, 2009

heartrazorWelcome to a brand new series I’ll be starting here on Going Bearfoot, a Tanking Primer! Here we’ll explore a new aspect of tanking each week for the next several weeks, continuing with today’s topic, Tank Talk. My hope is that I’ll manage to stay objective enough to cover tanking aspects without making this a “druid only” resource, and even include things specific to my warrior, paladin, and death knight brethren.

Tanking Primer Table of Contents

1. The Pull

2. Tank Talk

3. Adaptability

4. To be continued…


One of the strange things that has evolved over time in this game is that the tank is the leader. It’s entirely possible for a healer or a DPS to take charge and direct a group, but it’s a lot harder to do so. One reason for this is that it generally falls to the tank to be party leader for the sake of using raid markings to show priority kills. (Raid markings can be used for a strange concept called “crowd control” too, but this is a very ancient concept that no longer seems to apply to the world…) Because it falls to the tank to lead 85% of the time, it’s important that you find a way to establish yourself as the leader right off the bat, and remain in that position for as long as you need to work with your group.

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Stats for Offtanking

January 13, 2009
The Bear Talks

The Bear Talks

So I thought it was about time I actually got on subject a bit, so I’ll be talking about what I look for in gear kind of as a mirror to BBB’s first bear tank gear post for Wrath. But, as I pointed out, I do have slightly different priorities to consider.

In general, my preferences look like this.

First and most importantly, Agility is king. I weighted it with a full 100 because it’s a crazy, godly, super-multitasking, awesome, (Do I have to continue? I think you get the point, and I’d go on like this for awhile. It’s good.) uber stat. Agility gives you armor, and dodge, and crit, and if you’re specced for off-tank viability you’ve even got some healing spellpower added onto there. Agility is the best multi-tasking stat for druids the way Defense is for warriors and paladins. In fact, you’ll notice that in my filter I set agility to be almost 17 times more important than defense because, lets face it, unless they let me strap a shield onto my head or parry like all the wild bears, defense just doesn’t live up to it’s potential anymore.

Closely following agility is stamina; the stat most other bear druids put first, almost to the exclusion of any other stat. Really, if you believe everything you read, every socket on your body should have an epic +stamina gem in it, be damned your socket bonus or any chance that your healers might have mana at the end of the fight. Seriously though, stamina is important. It’s especially important now that they changed us from the tank with the least spike damage to potentially one of the worst. When they take your armor away and throw some Russian roulette stat like dodge in your face what do you do? That’s right, you say “Thank you sir, may I have another?” Because there really is nothing you can do about it. It’s Blizzard’s game. So when your dodge fails, you’ve got to have the stamina to eat those massive whacks like they’re high-quality steak. Stamina’s important, but it’s just not that important.

Hit rating and “expertise”, the new hit-rating type stat that they threw at us in BC (It’s like the offspring of hit rating the way resilience is the bastard child of defense…), are also top of the list in importance. If you can’t hit something, you’ll have a damned hard time building and taking aggro if your main tank goes down.

Next is armor, but that’s an obvious one. I’d put it higher, but they just don’t have gear with double it’s armor rating like the old heavy clefthoof set anymore, and they claim 3.0.8 will change the survival of the fittest talent so we won’t salivate over armor on trinkets and rings anymore either. We’ll see.

Dodge? I don’t like dodge rating, it seems like it take an absolutely ridiculous amount of “Dodge Rating” to get the same amount of dodge that the proper investiture in agility can get you, but both it and defense are, well, defensive so they make it on there next. Soon after are the combat damage stats- AP, FAP, and strength; then intellect. I include intellect because it’s damned hard to find on feral gear when it used to be the garnish on your staple stats. (Steak?  Garnish? Can’t keep off the food metaphors, can I? O.o)

Well, that about wraps it up for now. Mitawa’s about a level and a half from 80 still, and when I’ve got a better feel for top gear, I’ll probably post again, but that’s good for now. Stay tuned for a pre-tuesday gazetteer update where I’ll make a list of my favorite WoW machinima!


In the Beginning…

December 30, 2008

So here I am, a brand new blogger joining the ranks of those who have gone before me, hoping that I have at least a few thoughts in my head that haven’t been covered better, and more in depth by other people. I think there’s something there, but before I go and start talking about those things, I imagine it’s awfully pert to leave you hanging with no proper introduction.

So hello! I’m a lot of things, primarily a nerdy gamer girl for the purposes of this ‘blog. In fact, in case you couldn’t tell from the title up there at the top all shiny-like, my main obsession is my bear druid on the Horde side of the Earthen Ring server. I’ve also got a tauren hunter, and on another server a good handful of dwarves whom I love to pieces even if tauren are my usual thing. So far as my bear and his emphasis on this mode of communication though, I’d like to stop here and make one thing clear: I won’t be theorycrafting every last .1% of my threat or survivability and my spec will look a bit odd for a bear because I play the remarkably underpublicized and underappreciated role of “offtank”. Seriously! No wait! Don’t walk away yet, hear me out! See, offtank isn’t a role for the less-experienced or less-loved guys with buckets on their heads anymore, an offtank is a support role. You specialize in versatility and the Oshite button. You know, to the thumblength, exactly what you can put out and stay under the main tank’s threat so if he goes down, Mr. Bignugly goes onto your head and doesn’t rampage about, but you don’t get him prematurely and go down in a puff of smoke because your friends with the green glowy hands couldn’t react fast enough. As a druid, you also have the ability to take over a healer spot in case of emergency, or act as crowd-control, pop your battle ressurect spell, toss an innervate, stack some bleeds, and generally run around mopping up all the little spills that everyone doesn’t notice in the heat of battle. If I ever got stuck as a main tank, see, i couldn’t do any of those things… I wouldn’t be tanking if I tried to, I’d be a little smear of tauren who got out of bear form. Appreciate your offtanks, especially the ones who can be other things when they need to!

Along with being an offtank, I’m also one of those hairy, scary “Are-Pee-ers.” Only, I don’t do it right, see? I’ve never done cyborz or danced naked on a mailbox in my life (Okay, maybe once, but my character was drunk I tell you!). For whatever reason, I seem to try to roleplay as… a person. Like a REAL person. Not the long-lost tauren son of Thrall, or the One and ONLY person who killed Onyxia (nevermind that LOTS of people try to claim that feat). In fact, taken side by side with many “roleplayers” my characters are positively boring what with not having glowing green scars, or demon wings, or even a shadow that goes off on it’s own to do unmentionable things. Ah, well. What’s done is done. Le sigh.

There are other things, like being some kind of walking Lore encyclopedia, and an owner of cats, a draw-er of sketches, stitcher of leather, finder of fossils and minerals, honestly though I think those first two things are the biggies and what I’m going to be writing about. Obviously, of course, I can’t guarantee that I’ll always be on topic (and that sounds dreadfully boring anyway) but I’ll try. Just like I’ll try to update at least once a week. That’s what I’m shooting for. Maybe. We’ll see.

So there we have it- now I’m off to try and spruce this thing up!