After three weeks of absolutely no contact in the blogging world, I feel it is time to jump back on that proverbial horse. My blogging all fell off with the push for hard modes, and the fact that my time and attention was needed elsewhere. Between my piles of electronic paper at work and the amount of effort I needed to put into our guild at home, I had no time for my blog. Well, as the storm has subsided, I have plenty of things on my mind which I want to talk about, and still not enough time to write it all down.
Where I have been
In the past three weeks, I have been swamped at work, Killed the Lich King, taught two new tanks some gearing philosophy which I hope sticks, and dealt with multiple different types of guild drama. To top that off, I also bought a new home, making my free time drop considerably. I feel that a few of these things deserve their own posts, so I will start with the topic for which I am the most known for throughout the community, gear.
Walk a mile in your shoes
Over the past few months I have been working with a new tanking corps, and they all came in with different levels of understanding, skill, and overall competency. It took me a month or so to understand exactly where each of our new tanks were coming from, and what they knew when it came to their roll in the guild. Only after I sat down with another prot paladin tank in our guild did I have a clearer understanding of how I needed to approach each of them, what they already knew, and what lessons I had to impart on them. My main off tank, who now happens to be a paladin, conveyed what one of the other officers said to him and it finally struck home.
As an off tank in our guild, I do not envy you, you have the hardest role of any person here. You have to fill Wrathy’s shoes, and those are very very big shoes to fill…
Now while I am very aware that I have many areas and skills sets for which I can improve upon, what did not occur to me is that I am a respected member of the theorycrafting community, an expert on gear, and a very, very knowledgeable player who always comes prepared. Only one of my three fellow tanks in the guild realized this, as he is a paladin and visits the same websites which I contribute to. Once I understood that the other two tanks which I recruited to help us in the final push of the expansion had no clue what type of resource I was, I was in a better position to help them.
Gearing questions and advice
One night in ICC, our other paladin tank asked me about a threat spec, and why my offspec was always prot but always different than the cookie cutter specs we are used to. I explained that over the past six months my offspec has always been there for one specific fight, Heroic Anub’arak. As we dropped ToTGC from our raiding calendar and began to solely run ICC, I changed my offspec one more time. This time, it looks like a spitting image of the SoComm cookie cutter, however I glyphed specifically for Lich King, increasing my AoE damage for P1, and decreasing my holy wrath cool down for P3.
After this short discussion, he asked about gear, threat sets, and what I was aiming for. This brings me to my main topic for discussion today. The threat set for ICC. While most of us will be pushing progression for some time to come, and wearing our effective health set all time time, it is still nice to have that threat set for farmed content, trash packs, and dps races. I went on to wowhead and created a profile for my ideal threat set, only to find out that after 30 minutes of tweaking, I never signed in. As a result, you will be left with stats and screenshots, but this is my ideal threat set for hard hitting bosses, where you still need the stamina to survive.
This is the simple list of what I will be wearing for my threat set. There are a few things that can easily be swapped out based on the situation, such as the libram (trash and SoComm vs. Boss and Vengeance), however it balances the stats which you want for increased threat quite nicely. As I screwed up a bit, there are a few ilevel 277 pieces in here, but you can easily use the 264 pieces for those slots. This gear set is something that I complied out of bosses which I can currently (or with in the next week) kill. Below are the statistics and outcome of this set with the cookie cutter 0/53/18 spec, and no buffs….
As you can see, you are sacrificing a bit of health, sitting a hair below 40k, however you are looking at hit cap (a few points over), 50 expertise, 4k plus attack power and 20% crit unbuffed. This set will crank out quite a bit of tps.
When to use this set
This is a set that I would consider using only on farmed content. The definition of farmed content will vary from guild to guild, so it is up to your best judgement when to use this. For my guild, we are working on the Lich King in 25 man currently, so I will wear this for all bosses except the end wing bosses of the upper spire. On 10 man, I used this on every fight up to Sindragosa.
For those of you who have stuck around for my short absence, here are a few things that I have on the back burner for topics in the upcoming week. I have been developing a good post on educating tanks, the role of a mentor, and your job as the leader of a tanking corps, a post on guild drama which will be more of a rant than anything (but a good read none the less), and a post on the Lich King, and how we got our kill.
It is good to be back on the old blog, good luck this week in your raiding endeavors!