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lazy tanks

January 28, 2009

Why is there so little thought put into proper Guard use sometimes? I realize that at later levels, tanks who can’t use it are quickly weeded out, but how do you even get to those levels without actually reading your ability descriptions?

I ask because, having played four tank classes, I feel incomplete without Taunt and Guard. This is true of both PVE and RvR. I typically run a protector role from Omelettez, so I do tend to have my Guard (or Save Da Runts) on her a vast majority of the time. At the same time, if I am pressing the line and well out of range of her, I put it on whoever is following my target, or whoever’s target I’m following. The same goes for PVE, I’m usually with Omelettez so I keep her guarded, but I’m not foolish enough to leave it on her when a DPS joins. I enjoy stuff beating on me. I hate having my DPS die and lose trust in me and I hate having my healers die and stop healing me.

Note that I say my DPS and my healers. There are different outlooks on tanking, but here’s my outlook: My healers, my DPS, my off-tank, my pull, my boss. I’d rather die than lose something that belongs to me. I’ll use every dirty trick in the book to make sure I die before my friends and even more to make sure I stay up as long as possible. It’s a tanks job to protect and let you do your job as well as you can. If you’re DPS and your tank blames you for pulling aggro and dying, your tank isn’t fit for the job.

You pull without being asked? That’s on you. You stand in an AOE? You had feet, should have used them. Boss turns around and eats your face? That’s me. If it isn’t me, the game is not properly balanced. That just isn’t the case though. Guard is a massive help. In RvR it’s a massive reduction in spike damage. In PVE it’s an amazing tool for control. Imagine you’re putting out 1,000 threat per second and you have a DPS that puts out 3,300 threat per second. You would have no chance of holding aggro at all, they produce more than three times your threat. Throw guard on them, their threat is reduced by 1,155 and yours is increased by the same. You now cause 2,155 threat and they cause 2,145.

PVE? Who is putting out the most threat? You’re going to be guarded. Someone else pulls aggro, you just lost your Guard.

RvR? Heal me, I’ll protect you. Help assist me, I’ll protect you.

I do have a secondary reason to ask though, which is as mix of several things. I see a lot of tanks not guarding people, or not guarding the right people. If you lose aggro in a PQ to white attacks, perhaps you shouldn’t be guarding the healer standing some hundred feet away. If you’re in RvR you should not let me pound on your unguarded Witch Hunter friend. I can excuse wasting a taunt on me, especially if I’m being assisted, but no Guard? That’s just lazy.


5 Comments leave one →
  1. January 28, 2009 6:42 am

    Well put mate, You pretty much reflect my own opionions on tanking.

    One thing you forgot to mention is the proactive switching of guard.

    I ususaly run with my healers Runted in open rvr until we are engaged.

    Yesterday one of mu Bikini clad followers lets a shout out he was being ganked we ran towars him to find a tank on him a warrior priest on him and his health down to 25%. A switch of guard to him from the healer followed by a Challenge that got both enemy in the cone and then a root allowed the healer enough time to land the kill saving heal and turn the fight in out favour.

  2. theerivs permalink
    January 29, 2009 3:51 pm

    Well I miss the days you could guard anyone, not just in your group. Which I feel you should be able to guard anyone in your warband. I think though I am guilty of not guarding like I should in Open RvR. Well mainly because I’m suicidal. I’m that Chosen in the backlines, casting a blast wave trying to screw the healers up, so really being dead all/most the time, no real point to applying Guard every two seconds.

  3. pancakez permalink*
    January 29, 2009 11:35 pm

    Yeah, there is some question of if people I see, particularly in RvR are simply gimped by mechanics. Honestly though, there are simply too many for it to be just that. There are also a lot of times where having guard up at all is a liability. I really do think Guard needs to be expanded to Warbands (and Scenario Parties), rather than your own group exclusively. I will admit though, it definitely does need to be specific to people willingly in your group to prevent some possible griefing.

  4. February 26, 2009 8:26 am

    I encountered another (minor) problem (mostly for myself I assume). When I was new to tanking I never even thought of guarding, when I knew what it was I rarely thought about it in scnearios. Only after reading how handy it can be I started using it in scenarios (and playing as a healer knowing that it can save your life helps too). But when I press my Guard button on my keyboard it first turns off the guard, then I have to press it again to apply it, or is it just me, since I am in doubt of myself.

    I will try to use the guard abillity more effectively in ways you mentioned, guarding DPS near you and the like. The more I read on blogs like yours and others (I have been actively reading them lately) the more I come to see new way of playing, and actually see my playstyle chage in a good way. Keep it up.


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