Between all the stuff going on I have been neglecting the blog quite a bit lately. The now 20 page thread on armor versus stamina over at MainTankadin is hard to keep up with, and when you get behind you have about an hour of reading at the least to catch up. Also our guild has been having some issues which have occupied a lot of my time. For once it is not attendance, but given the circumstances and attitudes of the past week, I think I may welcome the 20 raider Wednesdays to the 35 players and drama now. Honestly with all of the discussion about armor versus stamina, it is hard to think about anything else to blog about, however I will not indulge in more of that banter, the discussion has been beaten to death in my opinion.
Last night we went into ICC 10 man and decided that since we had a great group we would knock out all of the achievements. Unfortunately we decided this after we passed up Lady Deathwhisper, so I have one more to go on the available content.
I was surprised at how easy they were. We were plowing through the instance one shotting everything that was trivial and taking a few attempts here and there to understand some modified strats for the achievements. What it came down to is that we still wiped on blood princes more than any of the other fights. Queen was a one shot, dances with oozes on putricide was a one shot, Rotface was the only other boss where we needed a few attempts to get dances with oozes.
Best in Slot dogma
In light of the long thread that started early in the week, which has morphed from a flame thread to a very important piece of our communities theorycraft, I wanted to talk about the concept of best in slot when applied to tanks. For a few months now on MainTankadin, there have been many threads and posts regarding the 3.3 Best in Slot lists. All of these have contained the question “when are we going to see your BiS List?” Well I believe that we have gotten to the heart of the matter to why you have not seen one yet. If we have learned anything from this 20 page thread, it is that there are a lot of different variables which we must take into account when trying to gear ourselves for a fight.
I used an analogy regarding Theck’s great work on Total Effective Health (TEH), and I believe that it can not be said enough with regards to gear selections and making generalizations about best in slot gear. The analogy says that
A hammer is an amazing invention that changed the way in which we perform construction but you should never use a hammer to put a screw in a board….
While this is a bit anecdotal, it proves a point regarding Theck’s work. You have to understand the purpose of the tool and use it only when it is applicable. The same goes for general gearing philosophies and gear sets. An extreme example of this lies in the passively unhittable set, aka the Anub’arak Hard Mode gear set. While it is powerful when tanking 4 adds during the Anub’arak encounter, you would not want to wear it to any encounter in ICC. The same holds true to a lesser extent for any of your other gear sets (if you have them), or your coveted BiS gear.
The gear on your back is only as good as the knowledge you use to apply said gear to a specific encounter. I am going to repeat that statement, bold it and italicize it because it is just as important as understanding what gear to wear to be a good tank, why there is a defense minimum, and what stats you should prioritize. The gear on your back is only as good as the knowledge you use to apply said gear to a specific encounter.
Before you walk into an instance, as a member of your main tanking core, you should understand what each boss does, what your raid will need to be doing, and what you can do to make the rest of your raid’s job easier. Once you have understood all of this, you can then tailor a gear set to help you ensure either maximum survival, maximum threat, or a balance of each depending on the fight, and its ease of completion with in your guild.