O hai. I'm ur noobtank. I'm here to wipe your group.
November 16, 2011 10:22 AM   Subscribe

I just started playing World of Warcraft again after two years. In short: I'm a total noob again and I'm starting to tank heroic dungeons and it is... messy. Noxxic seems pretty good for basic gear/stat information, and the in-game Dungeon Guides are nice, but they're really terrible for reading on the fly and don't actually include popular strategies. Is there a good place where I can learn how to tank Cataclysm Heroics or am I fated to drag poor strangers along on my very painful learning curve? I don't love sifting through dozens of YouTube videos, but videos would be helpful.
posted by jph to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (10 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
The queues are a lot longer but I'd recommend going in as DPS while you're still learning the ropes.
I also find WoW Head pretty good for info. They have Heroic strategies for all the bosses although they're not specifically tank oriented. There's also lots of user submitted comments that sometimes also have insights.
posted by missmagenta at 10:40 AM on November 16, 2011 [1 favorite]

I'd like to second the idea of throwing together a dps spec/set to learn the fights. Also, they implemented the new "dungeon journal" which should give you basic info about each of the bosses.
posted by Zophi at 10:44 AM on November 16, 2011

I like the videos the Yogscast guys put out for heroics - here. That said, I usually find their videos through wowpedia, but that's more because I hate Youtube's organizational functions than anything else...

The biggest hitch is that while bosses are one thing, Cata seems to want to make the trash a little more than a mild impediment to loot, so there's a bit of strategy there too, and there's almost no discussion about those. I tried playing through on random non-heroics to learn the various mechanics, but at 85 you only see 3 dungeons unless if you queue for lower level stuff and accept no reward for your time. So I'm still just barely getting in to them even through my ilvl is perfectly fine for the troll heroics.

...I miss Wrath Heroics.
posted by Kyol at 10:45 AM on November 16, 2011

Best answer: First, if you haven't yet found Tankspot, go check out Tankspot.

Are you in a guild with a lot of other level-capped people? Try getting a group together through your guild to chain-run heroics. Most people have alts these days, and alts need gear. Most people will be understanding to a new tank, if it means they get to have an instant queue and a group of three-five people from the same guild, instead being forced to take their chances with the dungeon finder. If you're not in a guild where that's possible, try to make friends with a good healer. Healing is harder in Cataclysm, but a good healer can make a lot of the learning curve much more bearable.

Also, if you have a lot of spare gold, invest cheap blue BOE in Auction House gear. Yeah, it's going to be a complete waste since you will replace the gear very fast, but being somewhat overgeared for the content will make it a lot easier, while you learn your rotations and when to use your CDs and whatnot. If you have more gold than you know what to do with (have master riding and maxed professions and all that), get some gear like the BOE purple tanking trinket from Firelands. It's expensive, but very good. I forget the name, but it should be obvious which one it is on the AH.

If you like PVP, you can always try running some random BGs to get honor, since Honor converts to Justice and can be used to get gear. Depending on your patience for other players and for PVPing without resilience, though, this could be more frustrating than actually pugging heroics.
posted by The Master and Margarita Mix at 10:45 AM on November 16, 2011 [1 favorite]

When I used to tank on my bear I would use this:

posted by rickim at 11:33 AM on November 16, 2011 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Oh hell, I didn't even think about gear. Yeah, nose around Ask Mr. Robot for gear recommendations. I'm up to something like 359 almost entirely from rep gear, firelands gear, and BoE gear. Doing the firelands dailies is a slow grind, but the gear it opens up is still pretty worth it.
posted by Kyol at 11:34 AM on November 16, 2011

Do you have the Deadly Boss Mods add-on? You need that.

The cata heroics...even as a dps, I ended up making notes (in big, easy to read letters) from the guides I read (eg, Wowhead and others) and keeping them by me as I was playing. The in-game guides don't really help with strategy at all.
posted by frobozz at 1:28 PM on November 16, 2011

Wowhead and Wowpedia are very useful for reading up on encounters. Wowpedia usually has linked Youtube videos for encounters. Elitist Jerks has very, very detailed class and spec guides. Probably significantly more detailed than what you need. Tankspot has encounter guides and gearing advice, as does Maintankadin.

I'm a fan of the Tank Stages gear guide at Maintankadin. It's mostly geared toward Paladins, though it's essentially the exact same for Warriors and Death Knights.

The most important part of being a low-level (ilevel, at least) tank IMO is being the group leader. Which you are. Make sure you know what classes bring what crowd controls and make them use them! "Mage, sheep the [caster], and can I get a hunter trap on the [healer]?"

Honestly, tanking the 5-man heroics in Cataclysm is less work than DPSing them once you learn what everything does. As a tank, you're pretty much just on positioning and interrupt duty.
posted by billybunny at 7:24 PM on November 16, 2011 [1 favorite]

Good advice on the web sites.

One thing to do, is that if you PUG it, let people know if you feel uncomfortable. Most - but not all - people will be happy to let you know if there is something you should know or do. And really, you have the DPSers by the short hairs, what are they going to do? Boot you and wait 15 minutes for another tank? They will if you don't ask, and pretend to know the instance when it's clear you don't. So just ask.

You can also score points by not being asshole-know-it-all tank. I hate that guy.
posted by Xoebe at 12:39 PM on November 18, 2011

Response by poster: Thanks all. Very helpful stuff and a number of websites that I used to know once upon a time, which I subsequently forgot all about.

Xoebe, I have been pugging a bit, and folks have not been terribly friendly even when I sort of jokingly mention to them that I'm pretty new to the heroics and I'd appreciate any advice, no matter how seemingly obvious. One guy was like, "Let's start with 'Don't stack stamina gems.'" and he got progressively ruder from there. Finally I was like, "Can you please cut me some slack? I haven't played since 2009." To which he responded, "Didn't they have guides back then that you could have read?"


When folks get grouchy in-game it makes me not want to play. And so I've spent the last week leveling up mining all on my lonesome, seeing some of the sights around the world and just riding my wyvern in quiet contemplation. It's been nice.

When not doing that, I have been going catform to be dps, so that I can learn some of the dungeons better and be a little less nooby.
posted by jph at 2:07 PM on November 18, 2011

« Older Adding a personal touch to digital photo frame...   |   What do you give your very conservative... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.