Where are the cool two-tank fights?

Disclaimer: I haven’t raided on the PTR yet, so my understanding of T13 fights is entirely based on rumor and conjecture.  However, that rumor and conjecture tells me that many of the T13 fights are one-tank fights, even on 25-man.  Whether that’s only true for normal modes is yet to be seen, maybe it will be remedied for heroic modes.  But it leaves me wondering: why, in an era where we’re expected to maintain 2 tanks on the roster, are we getting so many one-tank fights?  Where did the interesting 2-tank fights go?

What’s so good about two-tank fights?

There are two good reasons for encounters to use two or more tanks instead of one. For starters, it matches the tank-to-DPS ratio of the dungeon finder, at least for 10-man raids.  In 25-mans, you would need 5 tanks to match that ratio, of course, which is unreasonable.  I can see why the designers don’t do this.  It’s pretty easy to accommodate the extra DPS and healers in a 25-man raid; you can “convert” between 10-man and 25-man by simply increasing the boss’s damage and hit points.  But it’s tougher to add tanks, because the number of tanks is more closely related to the encounter mechanics than to the actual numbers the boss puts out.

But the point remains that designing 5-man content and two types of raid content to require very different population distributions for the different roles creates a problem.  No matter what you do, one of the content areas is going to suffer because of it.  We see this nowadays in the LFD “tank shortage” and long queue times for DPS players.  If there was a consistent 1:1:3 proportion of tanks:healers:DPS required in all content (2/2/6 in 10-man, 5/5/15 in 25-man), that would be greatly alleviated.

The more important reason, in my mind, is the need for consistency in role representation from encounter to encounter.  If you expect to need X tanks and Y healers in a given raid format, you design your raid roster around that expectation.  People generally want to play as their main spec, and want to gear for that spec preferentially.  This is especially true in guilds that use some sort of point-based loot system.

Breaking that expectation causes problems.  In most tiers, we have to accommodate fights where we run fewer or more tanks and healers than the usual encounter.  In my guild, I generally switch to Retribution for one-tank fights (Majordomo Staghelm, and several fights in Tier 11).  And to be honest, I don’t mind it, even though I have to compete with our main-spec DPS using last tier’s gear during progression periods.  It’s a nice challenge in a tier full of fairly simple fights to tank, and I enjoy showing up our guild’s DPS in inferior gear.  But not all player enjoy their off-spec as much as I do, nor do all players play it as well as they play their main spec.  And in many cases, the “extra” tank just ends up being subbed out for a main-spec DPS player, which is even less fun.

If that occurs once in a while, it’s not too bad.  But I don’t think it’s a healthy thing to do very often, because it can frustrate players who really want to play their role, but have to switch to off-spec or sit out because of an encounter’s requirements.  For a particularly egregious case of this, look no further than 25-man heroic Ragnaros, which encourages running 3-4 healers in a tier where you’re usually bringing 6-7.  That’s really rough on the roster if your healers aren’t awesome at their DPS off-spec.

Especially if content tiers are only going to have 7-8 bosses, I think more than a single one-tank fight is inadvisable.  More than that, like we’re apparently going to see in Dragon Soul, is really going to irritate tanks that don’t enjoy being forced to play their off-spec.  And arguably, if over half of the tier is one-tank fights and they’re the dedicated off-tank, Blizzard has just made DPS their main spec through encounter design.

OK, so why do we have any one-tank fights?

The main argument against having exactly two tanks, in my mind, is that it constrains the encounter designers.  We want them to come up with cool fights, and if we constrain them to require two tanks, that limits what they can do.  They can’t branch out to a third tank for a council-style fight, or cut down to one for a simple one-boss tank-and-spank.  To echo a sentiment I’ve heard fairly often, you can only use the “taunt when the other tank gets the debuff” mechanic so many times before it gets stale.  And to be fair, I agree; the “taunt on debuff” mechanic is in danger of being over-used.  However, that mechanic is only one of many ways to solve the problem, “How do I turn this one-tank fight into a two-tank fight?”

A quick review of “+1 tank” mechanics

There are a couple of tried-and-true mechanics one can use to turn a simple one-boss, one-tank fight into an encounter that forces a raid group to use two tanks.  Here’s a quick list, along with some examples of encounters that utilize those mechanics:

  • Taunt on debuff: Ragnaros, Beth’tilac (phase 2), Cho’gall, Nezir, Algalon
  • Taunt on boss ability: Baleroc (in theory – in practice many guilds one-tank this anyway), Chimaeron
  • Sabre Lash – Blood Queen Lanathel, Mother Sharaz, Patchwerk
  • Periodic adds: Maloriak, Nefarian/Onyxia (2->3 tanks in 25-man), Anub’arak, Kel’thuzad, Kil’jaeden

“Taunt on debuff” needs no explanation by this point.  It’s probably the simplest and most versatile way to accomplish the goal, which is why it gets overused.  Taunt on boss ability is slightly more interesting, because it rewards attentiveness and reactions, especially if the ability is randomized.

The Sabre Lash mechanic is arguably the worst of the four categories, because it’s the most boring implementation for the off-tank.  Blood Queen is probably the worst of the worst, since the off-tank could literally go AFK for the entire fight with the right positioning.  I put Patchwerk in this category, because he’s also basically a Sabre Lash mechanic.  Patchwerk is a slightly better implementation, because his Hateful Strike isn’t positional – it’s threat and health based.  However, he also gives the Hateful target extra threat, so the tank’s involvement is still basically over after the first 30 seconds or so.

Historically though, the most common way to extend a one-tank fight is juts to add a few extra mobs, in the form of add spawns.  Maloriak is essentially a one-tank fight which has mobs added to give you a reason to bring an extra tank or two.  But it’s done in a fairly creative way, integrating that into the fight with their own particular phase.  You can come up with examples of this type of fight in almost every tier of raiding since Molten Core.

I personally like the “throw adds at them” solution best.  Sure, we see it in almost every tier of content, but it never feels as stale as “taunt off the debuff” for some reason.  Maybe because adds are more dynamic, or involve more thought and planning than simply hitting Hand of Reckoning.  My guess is that because it’s a second, independent entity, it feels like you’re a necessary part of the team, because the main tank can’t be in two places at once.  As a result, it feels like a more important job, whereas “taunt off the debuff” and Sabre Lash mechanics feel like babysitting.

If you’re so smart, how would you do it?

Keep in mind that the goal is to shoehorn a second tank into what is otherwise designed as a one-tank fight.  By definition, that’s going to feel a little “tacked-on.” The problem with the “taunt off the debuff” solution is that it feels so blatantly “tacked-on” that it ends up looking like the lazy dev’s solution.  What’s needed is to add a mechanic that requires a second tank, but do it in a way that doesn’t feel tacked-on, despite the fact that it is.  It has to feel like a job that’s interesting, important, and worthy of a second tank.

For example, what about a the fight where an add spawns every 30 seconds and has to be off-tanked until it expires?  Maybe the add has 3x the boss’s hit points, so you can’t possibly hope to kill it.  You just have to tank it so it doesn’t run amok in the raid killing healers indiscriminately.  For a heroic version, the adds could spawn faster than they expire, leading to a natural enrage timer when your off-tank gets overwhelmed.

Or a fight where you throw a version of Alysrazor’s hatchlings at the raid, but tweaked so that the hatchling is immune to all damage sources except the person being focused?  There doesn’t even need to be a damage buff, so long as the hit points are balanced appropriately.  That sort of design has an additional advantage, in that it gives the tank an incentive to perform his damage rotation well – something we sadly need in the absence of an active mitigation model – so that he doesn’t end up having to tank multiples at once.  If you want tanks to care about balancing hit/expertise with defensive stats, this is one way to do it.  It’s an encounter-based way to turn your threat rotation into a survivability benefit!

Or how about an encounter where the boss periodically banishes the tank to a nether realm, where he has to dodge falling rocks, much like the Frostmourne room in the heroic Lich King fight?  If the rock-dodging tank gets hit, the boss could receive a stacking damage buff.  Meanwhile the second tank picks up the boss and has to cope with that stacking buff.

Or, in another variation on the “banish” theme, the fight where one tank and 1-2 healers are chosen at random and teleported to a separate room, after which endless waves of non-elite enemies start spawning.  The banished tank has to do everything he can to survive the onslaught and keep the healers alive until the timed event ends, and the non-banished tank has to handle the boss.  Since they’re chosen randomly, both tanks and all healers need to be able to do both jobs, making it imperative that every player in your group is capable of handling the challenge.

There are even interesting ways to use the “taunt on debuff” and Sabre Lash mechanics to these ends.  The problem with both mechanics is that they’re predictable and boring.  So make them dynamic.  Maybe the boss randomly chooses which tank to debuff, or gives both tanks a debuff (one +50% damage take, the other -50%), so that they actually have to think about who should be tanking next.  Maybe the boss’s Sabre Lash puts a Living Bomb debuff on both targets, such that the two tanks have to split up afterward to avoid killing each other when they go off (but need to get back together afterwards for the next lash).

Or combine the two ideas: a Thaddeus-like encounter, where both tanks get a polarity and need to stand close or spread out based on their debuffs, but with a Sabre Lash mechanic.  The tanks need to rotate cooldowns to survive the Sabre Lash when they’re forced to spread, leading to interesting tactical choices (“Ok, I’ll tank first and blow my cooldowns, then you taunt when they’re over and blow your cooldowns”).

I spit most of those ideas out in less than 5 minutes in a conversation with Meloree the other day.  I’m sure that the encounter designers, who are way better than I am at this stuff, can come up with many more.  So why aren’t we seeing them in-game?  Where is the insanely cool shit these guys are capable of?  Why, instead of neat two-tank fights, do we get a tier of content where one-tank fights are so prevalent?

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23 Responses to Where are the cool two-tank fights?

  1. Derevka says:

    +1, sir. Great post.

    I think we’ll see some more dynamic tank encounters in 5.0… along with the promise of “active mitigation”, otherwise tanking won’t be very much fun. (Not that Mel has been complaining about it at all… no, no… not at all.)

  2. queldan says:

    Tackling an irritating problem indeed.

    That also reminded me of Putricide, the first boss in BWL, and Razuvious – the concept of the tank MC’ing an add or something and being asked to do something else. It’s not tanking per se, but at least it keeps us tanks on our toes, instead of playing debuff ping-pong.

  3. Dan Paladin says:

    Excellent post. I think the lack of two-tank fights has been an unfortunate development in recent Blizz content and has been due to a recent change in philosophy that came about in part because of the dungeon finder. The complaints about the dungeon queue have caused Blizzard to reevaluate the tanking role in WoW, and it seems they have decided to go about addressing it in the wrong manner. The removal of threat and the trivializing of tank mechanics (read: extremely boring fights to tank) has been an attempt to get more people tanking. Blizzard doesn’t understand that the lack of tanks in WoW has a lot less to do with difficulty and a lot more to do with the inherent “leader” role that tanks have. Quite frankly, most people simply do not like leading, and would much rather work in the background as part of a collective (the healers group and the dps group). The small segment of the WoW population that does enjoy the responsibility of tanking will not expand simply because the mechanics of tanking are trivialized because tanking is still considered the leadership role.

    So in another attempt to reduce the issues of tank shortages, Blizz has decided to give groups the option of simply reducing the need for extra tanks in general. This is the reason “scenarios” are coming in 5.0 and I would not be surprised if we see a role-neutral dungeon at some point in the future. Having the tanking role make up only 1/25 people in a raid group is obviously something that Blizz is fine with at the moment.

    This post might have been totally off-topic, but I felt like getting it out :p

    • Carabas says:

      Well said, imho tank population is shrinking because of this trivializing. Swapping out for another dps is no fun at all, swapping spec too (even if you’re better than some of your guildmates) and the possibility of a 7/8 one tank fights (in normal, don’t know how many in hm) is pretty awful.

  4. Viktory says:

    Good job here, sir. I’m not sure that there are any easy answers when it comes to changing the quantities of tanks or healers needed, but I’m glad to see some great ideas circulating. Maybe then I’ll play my tank more than once a tier.

  5. Zaephod says:

    You bring up a lot of great points here, and I’d like to offer a few other avenues you left out.

    They killed {X}-resist sets/fights, so fights like Illidan (phase 2 and 4), Leotheras, and Hydross just aren’t going to come back any more. In addition, they’ve really gotten away from the non-traditional (read: warlock/hunter) tanking assignments, Illidan and Leotheras being good examples again. In both cases, those can be reduced to tanking assignments playing to different strengths (gear, being away from people so that melee can attack, etc.)

    Really, these were all precursors to the taunt-on-debuff situation we’re in now. It just went from “stop dots-stop dps-wait until {The warlock} picks it up-ok go” to “{debuff}’s up, taunt.” But still, those mechanics felt better than calls for taunt. The resist sets, I don’t miss, but I do miss tuning my gear for the encounter. Bleed tank? Stack armor. Magic Tank? Stack stam. Tight threat requirements? Hit/Exp cap. I had my gear configured so many different ways, and always had one picked out based on the encounter requirements.

    Now it’s mostly, block cap then do whatever b/c it doesn’t matter after that.

    • Theck says:

      One thing you’ve brought up that I didn’t address in the blog post is non-traditional tanking assignments. It’s not that I didn’t have anything to say about them, but I cut that section during editing because it felt like a side topic that didn’t integrate as well with the overall theme of “how do I take a one-tank fight and shoehorn a second *tank* in?”

      However, since you brought it up….. :)

      I think they can get a lot of mileage out of the non-traditional tank stuff, *especially* in 25-mans. For example, we’ve decided that Sabre Lash sucks as a mechanic, because the off-tanks get to stand there and eat collateral damage. It’s not an active job, so it feels like an afterthought. It’s bad enough to make one tank do that, but a 3- or 4-person Lash is even worse because it asks you to incorporate 3 or 4 tanks. Which means we don’t see a 4-tank Sabre Lash in future encounters, right?

      Well, no. Who said that you need 4 tanks for a Sabre Lash? Two is fine, that’s what you’re expected to carry on the roster. But why can’t the other two “victims” be DPS players? You could brute-force it, of course, and have DPS rotating in to use personal cooldowns (Dispersion, Divine Protection, Barkskin, etc.). That happens to some degree on Staghelm, depending on your strategy. But why not change it up a bit and incorporate that into the encounter?

      Every 30-45 seconds, the boss randomly debuffs 3 members of the raid. The debuff gives 50% increased damage done, and 50% reduced damage taken. The boss also has a 5-player Sabre Lash. So dynamically during the fight, DPS are going to have to be watching their debuffs and moving to the tank to help eat the Sabre Lash. The increased damage offsets the extra parry penalty for melee, and helps make up for the required movement.

      The main idea is that the designers *can* make 3+ tank fights without causing roster issues, because they can implement mechanics like this that let a DPS player take on the role of temporary tank while continuing to use their normal DPS gear. A debuff that reduces damage taken and increases DPS (and potentially therat) done is going to make any DPS player excited about filling the “off-tank” role in an encounter.

      • Pliers says:

        Ultraxion is kind of like this. There’s a standard tank-swap-on-debuff mechanic, but there’s another mechanic where 22 people in the raid shift out to avoid damage, and some have to soak it. Tanks are good options, but you will also need some dps to help out. I screwed it up several times on the PTR before getting the hang of watching different debuffs, and timing my cooldowns properly, but it’s a minor tweak to the fight that makes me more involved, and that’s something I will always approve of.

  6. Joe Ego says:

    One thing that helps multiple tank fights feel more natural is when the design isn’t forcing them both to tank all the time. Thorim split the raid up and Freya’s adds weren’t a constant presence. Fights like Festergut, while using the boring debuff mechanic, let the off tank have some fun with a big +damage modifier.

    • Theck says:

      The big thing, in my opinion, is that it’s good to give the off-tank something to do when he or she isn’t needed. Festergut is a good example: when not tanking, the off-tank gets to do a useful amount of DPS. Thorim used the debuff swap method in phase 2 to make sure that both tanks felt needed. Freya, on the other hand, had sections where the off-tank was basically just a weak DPS-er. Luckily those sections of the fight weren’t very long though, and there was a lot going on, which made it a fun fight to tank anyway.

      There’s an easy way to fix that for *all* fights: make tanks do more DPS in general. Right now, even with full Vengeance a tank is still only doing 50% as much damage as a DPS player. With lower Vengeance, which is common if you’re off-tanking, your damage is much worse. In an ideal world, tanks would be doing at least 75%-80% the damage of a DPS player, and Vengeance would be an always-on buff that provided that extra AP scaling.

  7. Adriaria says:

    Great post.

    As a player whose never liked melee DPS (i’m a caster at heart!) I feel our other tank has been put into a bit of an unfair position being forced to run as DPS on all the single tank fights. I’ve recently re-rolled to Paladin and hopefully i’ll enjoy ret more then I did DK dps.

    I too really am sick off the “taunt on debuff” fights we seem to be stuck with fairly reguarly, Ragnaros being a particular disappointment for me personally (I was still buzzing from how awesome tier 11 Nef was). It really does feel tacked on for the sake of it.

    In general with cataclysm (I didn’t raid before cata so this isn’t comparative) I think we have had a lot of disappointing fights as tanks (both the single and 2 tank fights). Out of 21 fights so far this expansion I only find 9 of them to be engaging as a tank. Not all of the others are bad, just not interesting. Obviously not all fights can be slanted towards all roles but Chimeron does a good job and being a healer fight whilst still demanding tank awareness for the double attacks in a way that at least engages you (unlike Baleroc who usually only casts decimation blade once).

    I just hope that come tier 13 we can get some encounters that keep us engaged even if we are forced into running with a single tank.

  8. Pliers says:

    To add some more possibilities:

    Taunt immune mobs where swaps have to be made. They could have certain debuffs or attacks lower the current tank’s threat, or buff the OTs, to make it less frustrating than having to throttle, but the better your threat rotation is, the smoother the transition goes. I liked Heroic Lady Deathwhisper, which is a decent example of how to handle multiple tanks.

    Taunt immune mobs that are beating on an NPC, or a wall, or whatever, which have a certain amount of threat on that target, and the tank has to strip agro before the mob’s target is destroyed. Their own personal dps race. Maybe there is an inverse proximity damage from somewhere else in the room (more damage the further away you are), but the tank has to be far away in order to get threat, so they still have to juggle defensive cooldowns.

    Your standard dot-stacking boss that also gets buffed when they are taunted, so that you have to be careful about how and when you make swaps.

    Boss debuffs that dramatically increase the damage you deal to adds elsewhere in the mechanic. The MT gets the debuff, and then the OT takes over, while the MT has to run around after the other mobs, which get more powerful over time. You’re not tanking anything, but you’re still the defender of the raid, as you sprint around trying to keep the raid from getting overrun by mobs with too much hp for anyone else to take care of.

    P3 Nef-like mechanics. I really liked that fight as a tank. You had to communicate with the position of the adds and of Nef, and while the dps of the OT didn’t matter, I don’t think anyone who did that job considered it dull.

    Like you say, there are many ideas that can be put together in just a few minutes of thinking. If even a few of them are implementable, that covers an entire tier.

  9. Saltycracker says:

    I’m not sure we can accuse the encounter designers as being lazy. I’m sure they have lots of creative ideas for tanks in these encounters. They just can’t design encounters that deviate too far form where the historical encounters have taken us, because of the diluted player base that now inhabits the raiding environment. We have seen time and time again that if we get something unique and fun and different, the majority of the player base has a conniption and the developers back peddle; the formula works and if you change it, you will lose subscribers.

    10man raiding put more constraints on encounter design in this respect as well. It may already be that the tank is the critical failure point for almost every encounter, and putting the wrong kind of stress on that player could potentially make 24 other people very unhappy.

    I’m hoping there will be more of an encounter complexity gradient between LFR, Normals, and Heroics so that the unwashed masses can have their non dynamic pick up raids, normal raiding guilds can have a little bit of fun, and the heroic raids can open the creative floodgates and be challenged.

    To be fair, why do tanks get to complain about their jobs being boring? DPS and healers do the exact same thing on every encounter too, whether that be hammering on a boss, or making bars go up with minor deviation depending on the encounter. I suppose if there was a tanking metric, a lot of tanks wouldn’t be bored, kind of like what Vixin posted a couple weeks ago: if it’s not obviously visible or measureable, people won’t value it. I would argue that every player who doesn’t tank, doesn’t see tanks as real people but as things that enable them to have fun.

    • Pliers says:

      The tanking metric is enabling dps and healers to do their job. Position poorly or do poor threat and dps can’t dps. Take too much damage or don’t use your cooldowns, healers can’t keep up. Your job is simply to enable them to do theirs. Over time, the tank’s performance has less and less to do with their personal ability. The difference between an amazing tank and a good tank is not enough to allow you to bring one less healer. Their increased dps is not enough to let you bring one less dps. Their job is basically pass/fail, because there is only 1 or two of them. Compare that with dps, where you have 17-20 on a single fight, and small fluctuations in performance can lead to large differences.

      In a 2/6/17 breakdown of the raid, each tank doing “5% better” is essentially meaningless. Each healer doing “5% better” is equivalent to 30% of one extra healer. It may provide a bit of cushion, but is almost definitely not going to change the nature of the fight. If each dps does 5% better, you gain an entire raid slot. For DPS, their job is to maximize their performance while doing the dance, which usually makes it harder to maximize their performance. They also set the pace of the fight. They need to make the boss die before the healers can’t keep enough people alive to make the boss die. Healing is, by nature, a dynamic role. You can predict certain kinds of damage, and have to be ready to react to other, less predictable ones. You may know people are going to take damage, but not how much, or who, or where they will be. For a tank, your basic role is to hit a few abilities every so often that effect your survivability. In your basic role, you could stop hitting everything except for your major cooldowns, and it wouldn’t matter. The dps benefit of a tank doing phenominal dps compared to one who is doing mediocre damage is likely lost in the noise of your dps players.

      It is boring because they often don’t matter, not because the hitting of their buttons is less exciting than that of a dps. If you take a fight you have on farm, with no trouble, and then add an extra healer or two, they will be bored out of their mind. They may be hitting the same buttons on the same people, but they don’t matter, and that is why they will complain.

  10. Kihra says:

    Having done all of the fights on 25-man normal, I think the designers *intended* you to 2-tank all of them but Hagara and Zon’ozz on 25 normal.

    Morchok – Has a stacking debuff that reduces your armor. It’s clearly intended to be a tank swap mechanic, but the problem is it falls off during his second phase. If they’d just made the debuff duration as long as an entire phase 1 or made it stack more quickly, then the tank swap could have been more necessary. Anyway, Heroic adds a second Morchok to tank, so it will be a 2-tank fight.

    Yorsahj – Has a stacking Void Bolt debuff. It can be quite substantial on 25-man for a single tank. You can cooldown it though. Still, the intent is pretty clear… that the designers want you to tank swap about halfway through the phase.

    Ultraxion – Clearly designed for two tanks with a swap on Fading Light debuffs.

    Warmaster Blackhorn – Designed for two tanks. Two adds to tank each with different stacking debuffs (one magical, one physical). You swap big adds on each wave. The boss has a stacking debuff that forces a swap as well.

    Spine of Deathwing – Designed for two tanks, but just barely. It will obviously need two full tanks on Heroic.

    Madness of Deathwing – Designed for two tanks. Taunt when the other tank gets Impaled. The two adds at the end hit super hard. I think solo tanking them would be really hard. My understanding is that this fight got buffed substantially, so some people have the impression this fight is easier than it actually is.

    On Heroic Zon’ozz I think you will need two tanks to handle the adds, leaving Hagara as the only 1-tank fight in Heroic.

    Anyway, so far the fights actually look really good. They are way more engaging for me than the FIrelands fights were.

    • Meloree says:

      Ultraxion may be one-tank in heroic. The text on fading light changes (random people, as opposed to tank and random people).

      The point remains that of the fights, 4 of them are “taunt on debuff” fights, which is getting pretty tired.

      • Kihra says:

        The current Dungeon Journal for Ultraxion actually says:

        “Ultraxion sucks the light out of his current target and one random player, drawing them into Twilight over 5-10 seconds. Upon expiration, players in the Twilight Realm instantly die. Players in the normal realm forcibly enter the Twilight Realm, and are afflicted with Faded into Twilight.

        In 25 player Difficulty, Ultraxion sucks the light out of three random players. In 10 player Heroic Difficulty, Ultraxion sucks the light out of two random players. In 25 player Heroic Difficulty, Ultraxion sucks the light out of six random players. In Looking for Raid Difficulty, Ultraxion only sucks the light out of his current target.”

        I can confirm that on 25 normal it was two random players plus the tank, so I think it’s just poor wording. I’m sure the tank still gets Fading Light, given the change to Faded Into Twilight in Heroic that makes the tank take 100% more damage instead of doing no threat.

  11. Saltycracker says:

    Something that stuck in my head that I read last year:

    “There is a saying that generals are always trying to fight the last war. In a sense, so is Blizzard.”


  12. Ryan says:

    I thought General Zarithrian in the Ruby Sanctum was interesting. The adds were quite spread out so you had to chase them down and when you had them gathered up it was your turn to tank the General. The switching there was fun especially if you didn’t zoom out.

    Another idea is if the boss tank got a stacking armor debuff but it increased his damage done. It could require switching tanks so the healers can keep up. As everyone gears up the tanks could hold the boss longer or even keep the debuff on both tanks to maximize dps. The healers would then still be taxed but it’s worth it to kill the boss sooner. Tie some weird achievement to holding a certain number of stacks or something and you have a hit! Unfortunately this would eventually let the dps do less dps. There would still need to be some motivation for them.

  13. Sunnier says:

    You have some excellent ideas, and I was also quite worried about how so many fights in this upcoming tier can be done with a single tank. If fights can be done with just one tank and has any sort of dps requirement, then that’s the way it will likely go, unfortunately.

    I am hoping that along with the upcoming ability for the game to detect specs in 5.0, we’ll get some more interesting fights for tanks. We saw some fights this expansion where they tried to detect tanks (like Sinestra), but it wasn’t always perfect. Maybe once they have a solid way of detecting tanks, they’ll be able to implement more complex ideas like your banishing mechanic.

  14. Dssucks says:

    So my guild ran DS this week and we cleared the whole thing. We have decided to gear one tank with 4t13 asap for the raid cd and as I share my token with 4 other ppl in my 10 man team we decided to gear my tanking partner first. With this in mind I sat out on the fights we only needed 1 tank for. Turns out that is all of them. I tanked a couple of fights with my tank partner but I honestly think it was unnecessary as he could have soloed them all :( wtf!!! I am now in a position where I need to go dps or sit out and if you need me to dps, why not bring in a main spec dps who can do the job much better than me anyway? This whole raid has me considering what I am going to do going forward. I hate dpsing… Hate it! I have tanked for years on my bear and dont want to do anything else and Blizz is forcing me to. Really not happy and tbh it makes me want to leave the game entirely. People may say “but the heroic modes might have 2 tank mechanisms” that may be but how do i gear for them and learn the mechanics? Very disappointed :/

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