Monday, September 8, 2008

[Druid] The warriors are worried about what?

Another good blue comment from the beta forums:

Drop by the warrior forums and you'll see they are concerned they will never get to tank because the druid can innervate and battle rez.
Are they worried that they'll never get to tank because druids can heal and moonfire spam too? Because I know that I do a lot of tanking Azgalor and then when a priest yells for an innervate I drop to caster form, lose 25000 armor, and cast an innervate and then jump back.

This happens all the time.

I don't believe that the warriors are that dumb, but if they are - no, we don't do this, it would be virtual suicide if we did do this on any hard fight, and the only time we might even think about it is if we're about to wipe unless we try something. I think I've done the barkskin/brez trick twice in my entire career. It worked once. And if I tried something like that during a raid, I'd get lynched.

I really hope that this isn't the kind of influence that the beta forums are providing. If it is, I implore you to understand why this isn't at all correct and shouldn't be a concern for any tanking class. Warriors might have reason to be concerned with the removal of crushing blows, since crushing blows were a way to limit druids over paladins and warriors. But because a druid can battle res? Seriously?


Felkan said...

I, too, saw that this morning. It made me laugh out loud. What a bogus comment.

Darraxus said...

Coming from a Warrior tank, this is ridiculous. Druids are not going to be popping out of bear form and inervating when they are tanking a hard hitting boss. Goodby armor and a big chunk of health would make it easy to get gibbed. That would be the equivalent of a warrior taking off his tanking gear, putting on cloth, calsting stone form, and bandaging someone. It just isnt really practical. I think some people just QQ too much. Cant we just all get along (and complain about Rogues in Arena).

Kalon said...

Darraxus - thanks :) And yes, I really don't think any warrior worth their salt is thinking this. Any more than they're thinking how awesome a paladin is because they can heal themselves while tanking.

I'm worried that either the warriors on the beta forums are saying this (in which case they need better warriors) or, more likely, the devs think this is the case.

runycat said...

Yeah, this is pretty lolarious, especially since I've played both. You'd have to be pretty retarded to take anything like that seriously, especially considering you essentially turn into a caster to perform any zomg specialz abilities. I bet you can figure out how many times I battle rezzed retards while I was tanking during Twins attempts.

I admittedly haven't been paying attention to the warrior beta forums, but the fact that Blizzard blue posters are drawing attention to this only furthers my conviction that they have no idea what they're doing, what they're talking about, or how to play the game.

Maybe I'm just a bitch.

Jorani said...

I don't know whether the comments are ignorance (not seen the fights, not an insult) or lack of skill/support. We have a bear tank that on many fights definately pops out brez/innervate then pops in. Take netherspite, two tanks. When not on tanking duty can definately brez. Or nightbane, during the air phase. There are many fights where there are moments where the bear tank can do exactly that. Bird boss during the storm. If he is not in the air he can brez or innervate and throw a heal. We also have a fury warrior that can pop board and sword, taunt, and take damage for long enough to allow the tank to brez then taunt back. I absolutely believe that this is one advantage to having a druid tank and it seems a shame that people out there do not seem to be able to arrange circumstances such that they can use this advantage.

Kalon said...

Jorani - thanks for coming by and commenting. I think that you have a good point - that there are plenty of fights where there are phases, or special breaks, or you can figure out a way to do it. But those are really the exception rather than the rule. Yes, a bear could brez during Brutallus when they're not tanking. They could do it during Illidan phases after they're done flame tanking - and in both cases they can use their innervate then. On Bloodboil I can res people while someone else is fel raged, and innervate someone else, AND heal.

But those are the exceptions rather than the rules. For every fight like Gurtogg or Supremus you have things like Akama, where multiple dorks are pounding on you at once. Or Azgalor, where having a fury warrior taunt off of you will just result in a dead fury warrior. Or Kalecgos, where you simply don't have time for a res. Or, like runy says, on Eredar where you're just being pounded on. Or all the other huge amount of bosses where they're simply not tauntable at all. It's a nice bonus sometimes, but relying on it is silly; most of the time I can't use it meaningfully at all unless I'm DPSing.

To me, this is akin to saying why we would take any melee dps other than a fury warrior, since they can also tank sometimes and can taunt and intercept and pummel. Brez and innervate are both druid-specific abilities, not spec-specific, and they are not so groundbreaking that you must have them. Furthermore, they're almost unusable as a tank unless you go out of your way or the fight happens to be set up that way. You might as well say that you shouldn't ever take a druid tank because warriors can spell reflect.

tomlins said...

Well, yes I agree entirely, there are plenty of times when a druid can use caster abilities to save a fight while MTing and plenty of times they cannot. I do both. But I wouldnt pour scorn on the comment. Just knowing you have a feral BREZer along for the ride, who knows how and when to use it gives raid leaders a warm fuzzy feeling inside. Maybe thats illogical and irrational, but real people do also make choices for those kinds of reasons. When I have a prot warrior along, I tend to expect "tank" and not much else.

jorani said...

First of all i can see how trolling forums can be addictive. The satisfaction from getting a response is very cool. I have not replied much but your post fired me up. First o all thanks for replying. I appreciate that you not only took time to read but took time to reply. It is frustrating that you misinterpreted what i said then took my argument to an extreme that i did not.

I don't believe that brez/innervate during combat is an exception rather than a rule. It just takes thinking about it when you need it, then remembering for the future. Any tank has special abilities, this does not mean you should give it exclusive tanking rights, but rather when deciding who to take, or who tanks what, you should veiw the whole. And in combat brez/innervate/heal is something a druid tank brings. You said an exception. I will use kara because most people will be familiar with it. So lets see. (odt = our druid tank)

Attumen: other tank can take over during phase change brez, the take over threat and tank (odt)
Moroes: during garotte
Maiden - no (odt)
Romeo and juliet - yes when your mob is dead, or during boss change
bbw - during chase (odt)
Crone - if you are on tinhead (odt) then yes
Curator - mt no, hatefulbolts tank then yes (odt)
Illhoof - mt no, kilrek tank - hell yes. (odt)
shade - no tank but yes
chess - N/a
Netherspite - yes
prince - no (our druid tank)

Can you brez at any moment. No. How many fights could you not at any point - 2 (+2). How many require thinking/or cordination but can at some point - more than 2. We certainly chose situations where he could but not everytime. Sometimes he wanted to main tank. so be it.

I believe every tank has advantages. But a good tank can still rock it out. One of my best ZA runs had 2 warrior tanks. The guantlet to the bird boss and the dragonhawk adds were the easiest ever. The tanks rocked it out.

So to clarify - brez is a valuable tool in the druid tanks arsenal. it can be used a lot if you think/plan around it. These are not the exceptions, but neither are they the rule. We don't rely on it but do consider it when choosing tank jobs. It is not instant but can be used at certain points. I am not sure how my argument could be used to say you only use x, when i was showing that there are many exceptions. Not using the whole of a class and relying on a spec is also silly. As a fire mage i have had to use frostbolt for kiting (read moroes). I mean isn't stance dancing about using non-spec specific abilities? I am sorry this is a novel but to misinterpret my meassage is not fair on the reader or the writer and i wanted to be clear.

Finally again, thank you for replying, and for the blog. i thorougly enjoy.

Kalon said...

jorani - thanks again. I think the part that I'm more emphasizing is the (mt no) part. To me, things like innervate or battle rez (or really, the ability for a druid to DPS as feral) are reason to make them not MT. That's a lot of what I'm seeing now - where given taking a few tanking classes to a fight, which one of us tanks? Well, it's not going to be me because I'm too useful when I'm not tanking.

But to use the comment that 'why would you bring a warrior when you could have a druid because they can innervate and brez'? That seems ludicrous to me. The reason you'd bring a warrior at the very least is because those abilities aren't available all the time or even most of the time. They're something you'd like to have, sure - especially when learning a fight. But it's not something you can count on.

Vashj is a good example of a fight where having a druid tank is great - because being able to res anyone is such a huge deal, and there are breaks where you may not be tanking things. That's exactly the sort of fight where you'd take a druid over a warrior - but not just because of that. It's because of that, because they can break snares easily, because they do a lot of damage, because they can do damage when not tanking as a cat, because they're durable...etc.

Just the battle res and innervate aren't enough. And if warriors are claiming that raid leaders are going to lean towards druids over warriors because of those things...I think that's a bit ridiculous, and ignores all the ways that a warrior has advantages in fights currently.

Tomlins - that's a good point. I just hope that the devs aren't making class decisions and power rankings based on warm and fuzzy feelings.

tomlins said...

Well, maybe the things you describe Kalon are an issue with your guild. If people choose to put you in the non-MT role because they perceive you as more useful that way when you'd rather by MTing... then tell them that! I did, and I get more MT jobs these days, even if I wont be able to pop a brez during a Winterchill session. (noone should be dying on Winterchill anyways!)

Thanks for responding - I also really enjoy the disagreements/discussion a lot.

The point I was trying to make is that it seems natural to me that warriors would worry. Guilds do make decisions based upon past habits & custom, and past experience of what worked. People tend to shy away from new things. And guilds do make irrational decisions. That's nothing to do with how Blizzard designs classes; that's what makes the game very fun and very human. Does choosing to take your highly skilled friend along for the ride count as irrational? If, according to some theorycraft, a lesser skilled player you disliked would be "better" because of their class? Blizzard have stated they want to create options where people can play with their friends, not with people who have the "right" spec for the job.

Some abilities like battle rez have an enviable power-glam factor to them simply because no other class can do it. Remember this is a game where people will farm a boss repeatedly just to get some vanity mount. My point is that people get turned on or paniced for all kinds of reasons, some of which are really not rational at all, and yet are very much a part of the game. Having a brez available should never make or break a raid. If it did, it would be Blizzard's fault.

I tend to agree with the previous poster: I dont see brez as an exception that is irrelevant when tanking; I use it a fair bit too, even while MTing. Its situational, and you've got to be quick & smart about it. But a great druid tank should be able to pop innervate/tranq/rebirth at the right time, for the right reasons.

I do also think some warriors may panic because they perceive their niche role (whatever that is) coming to an end. You do see some pretty mediocre prot warrs at endgame with bad attitudes. They've gotten away with it because they're prot, so the guild assumes they need them. This goes back to the times when prot warrs were the only viable tanks. The skilled warriors dont panic, because they know skill trumps all in the end :)

Sorry for the wall and thanks again for your awesome blog :)

secretagentcat said...

I love that little brez trick, I've used it twice so far in ZA. However, your absolutely right, there's no way it should be used during a fight you're continually tanking like.... oh... *ponders* I can't think of any right now... prince, probably.

I've used it on the bear and dragonhawk bosses, on dragonhawk I did it while he was tossing out his evil orbs of death, on bear I waited until he transformed to troll and ran off, in order to minimize the damage. We still wiped anyway but damn did we give it our best xD

Kalon said...

Thanks again for stopping by, Tomlins. :)

I don't have a problem with the role I have in my guild, honestly. If I truly wanted to tank anything, I could. Right now, though, we have 4 starting tanks in our core - 2 warriors, a pally, and me. And for most fights we want all of these people to get a shot at getting gear so that we can progress, which means bringing all of them.

But on Kalecgos, for instance - we only need three tanks.

I'd personally rather go DPS and be in the instance and let the other three tanks tank something than be one of the three tanks and sit one of those people. And that's where the druid utility and versatility shine; if you don't need a tank but want to bring a tanking class for gear upgrades, druids rock.

And I agree with you - guilds are run by people, and people make irrational decisions based on prejudice and poor knowledge all the time. What I hope is that Blizzard is not designing the game around those knee-jerk reactions. And honestly, the fact that a feral druid can innervate and battle res is not a reason to bring that druid as a tank over a warrior. It's a valuable ability on some fights, granted. But so are so many of the warrior abilities that a druid lacks. Druids still can't block anything. They still can't spell reflect, they can't intervene. They won't have vigilance or shockwave. And unlike most of the core warrior abilities, druids that are tanking can not often use brez or innervate.

I do really hope that we get to the point where tanks are taken not because of their class but because of their skill. I'm pretty lucky to be in a guild with excellent tanks all around, but as we've grown up I've seen plenty of bad tanks too - and of them, quite a few have gotten by because they're warriors (in raiding) or paladins (in 5-mans). I hope those days are done.

Jorani said...

Wow. What a discourse this has brought forth. I think that if for no other reason this post rocked it out. However the confusion seems to be we are arguing about different things. You are arguing about the statement "Drop by the warrior forums and you'll see they are concerned they will never get to tank because the druid can innervate and battle rez." Frankly if i was a warrior i would QQ more about the fact that druids believe they have a right to tank as well as a prot warrior and dps as well as a fury warrior on the same spec but thats by the by. (you even stated "I'd personally rather go DPS and be in the instance and let the other three tanks tank something than be one of the three tanks and sit one of those people."). That however is not the purpose of my post. I have no grief with peoples opinion on this.

My post was in fact disaggreing with "I don't believe that the warriors are that dumb, but if they are - no, we don't do this, it would be virtual suicide if we did do this on any hard fight, and the only time we might even think about it is if we're about to wipe unless we try something. I think I've done the barkskin/brez trick twice in my entire career. It worked once. And if I tried something like that during a raid, I'd get lynched.". I think given the evidence above this statement is obviously fallacious. That was all. Period. There are heaps of opportunities if you are canny enough to think about it. whether that justifies the warrior fear is irrelevant. the reality is your statement was misleading at best. I would hate new druids to believe that as a tank they can/should ignore there other abilities. Having read further into your replies i got a much clear picture of where your argument was really coming from. In hindsight if that had been the post then this would've never occured. Not sure if this would have been good, because now you know you have passionate readers.

Note i am actually a druid not a warrior, but i happen to be a tree by inclination. However i loved that as feral i have off tanked, dps as cat, dps as ranged and then tanked murmur (in healing gear when tank went south), in the same instance. love it!!

Thanks again.

tomlins said...

Yeah, I lot of passionate responses, and yes your reasoning is also more clear to me now. Ha! I think I'm gonna quit commenting on blogs for a while. There's such a massive amount of negativity being generated en masse in the blogosphere. I guess thats just human inclination.

Agree with you 100% - no arguments or misunderstandings - on your skill comment. I really think those days are coming to an end. Let tanks compete for the glamor tanking roles on skill and skill alone. Thank god Blizzard is moving the game in this direction.

Kalon said...

I'm very happy that this column got so much feedback. Even if it's mostly telling me that I'm wrong. :)

Jorani - thanks again. I'd much rather have passionate readers who disagree with me than ones that agree without questioning.

(you even stated "I'd personally rather go DPS and be in the instance and let the other three tanks tank something than be one of the three tanks and sit one of those people.").

That's absolutely true. However, I don't do close to what a rogue, fury warrior, hunter, warlock or mage can do as DPS right now. I can do better than a spriest, and I can do close to the enhancement shaman if I'm buffed in the melee group. And that's fine for fights where DPS isn't as important or the DPS budget is already exceeded. For fights where we need to have the best DPS possible? Either I'm tanking, or I'm sitting.

(The exception to that, ironically enough, is when a battle res is super important, such as on Vashj).

To be clear - I don't want to tank as well as a prot warrior AND DPS as well as a fury warrior. I want to tank some fights very well - preferably better than other classes - some fights less well, and have DPS that is decent enough to not force a swap and combine that with some okay party/raid buffs. That's my desire. It's a ridiculous notion (and one I'm not espousing) that a class could do great tanking and great DPSing with one spec. It's not the case at all in Live for ferals, it's not what I want, and it's not what the devs want. If there are druids out there that are suggesting this, they're dumber than a sack of hammers.

And as to the fallacious point - no, I don't think it was. I was talking about a very specific trick - the trick of hitting barkskin, rebirthing, and then going back to tanking while tanking a boss. This is suicide in 25-mans, or at least it is asking for suicide. As darraxus said, it's like unequipping everything and then going to bandage someone while still tanking. Yes, innervate and battle res are good abilities and are a reason to bring a druid, but they aren't a reason to bring a druid as a main tank; the situations are just too uncommon and no raid leader worth their salt would take a feral as a MT because of that. They'd take a feral because they were a good player and their strengths matched up well against that boss. And keep in mind I'm talking about the 25-man raiding environment primarily. 10-mans are interesting to me, but it's not entirely reasonable to discount my views of 25-man raiding based on experiences in Kara. The two are simply not that comparable.

There's such a massive amount of negativity being generated en masse in the blogosphere. I guess thats just human inclination.

Sorry, Tomlins. I'm a bit down on the beta experience for ferals right now, especially since so many things I had hoped for have been exacerbated. But you are right - there are plenty of things to be optimistic about, and that gives me a good idea for another post. Thanks again for replying. :)

Jorani said...

I am a little disappointed in your response. I would have been more impressed if you had just admitted that your post was not as well thought out as it should have been. You have spent more time ducking and diving than just admitting you made a mistake. No one is right all the time. (as my wife constantly tells me)

I am sorry for my arguments. when you said that warriors were being silly for worrying about brez i didn't realise that what they were worrying about was only the barkskin/innervate brez thing. The one situation that is unlikely to happen is not representative of there fear. Unless you genuinely believed there was no other option.

I am sorry i used kara to illustrate my point. I was trying to appeal to the bulk of your readers, rather than use 25 man which i have little experiance.
However, if you were tanking Blindeye the Seer you could brez when she was dead.
As main tank for lurker you can brez when he dives and your add is dead.
You can do it during phase change or when not tanking your phase of hydross the unstable.
As off tank for Fathom-Lord Karathress.
Or Leotheras the Blind during off phase.
Or loot reaver after knockback.
There certainly are multiple opportunities on alar.
Or High Astromancer Solarian during your dps portion.
Or at multiple places during several phases of the Kael'thas Sunstrider fight
You can also do it on bloodboil and brutalis as you mentioned.
Unfortunately my 25man is limited so i don't know a lot about other bosses.

I also think you should also have been clearer "they will never get to tank because" - tanking is more than main tank only.

I like druid tanking. I like that they have designed the fights to allow the druid to brez. Its not a deal breaker but hella nice. I really hope that druid tanking is as viable in WOTLK as TBC, if not more so. I also hope that they design around certain abilities that make the tank/healers/dps shine. I hope pauses for brez is one of them. A druid is a hybrid with all that it brings. Our druid tank pulls with starfire then moonfire then bear. This gives him good initial aggro on multiple targets or the main target. This is an advantage over a warrior. Not a dealbreaker but certainly this is something to consider when allocating mobs and pull order. I like that all the tanks bring something different. I like that druids bring good dps when not tanking. Having the variety can certainly cause uncertainty. Using a rubbish example to disprove an obviously unfounded fear has only been compounded by your desperate desire to defend the position.
"Are they worried that they'll never get to tank because druids can heal and moonfire spam too?" Hell yes, as not all fights use 1/2/3/4 tanks. Or 7/8/9 healers. Being a hybrid allows you to come to bosses with a simple respec that the prot warrior may have to pass on.

Finally as one of my colleagues pointed out to me "dude let it go, it was a bitch piece. Ignore the mistakes. he just wanted to rant" I think i agree with tomlins and shouldn't post anymore. I am happy to be proven wrong with a researched considered response. I don't like is quibling over semantics to prove/disprove a point. I appreciate you used the example of barkskin innervate, but frankly it would be embrassing if this was the sole reason, rather than an example, of why warriors should not be worried (all there oh shit buttons and spell reflect for example).

Anyway all the best