Anyone can be a noob at times!

You’re gonna love this.

I like to think that I’m careful… that I arm myself with that most powerful of weapons before taking planned action.

No, not a Holy Hand Grenade, I’m talking about information.

I research. I study the how and the who and the what, but I place prime importance on the why.

When I set out to tank as a Paladin, I went out and looked for resources. I was already armed with a fundamental understanding of Defense and Weapon Skill and how group threat works and all that kind of jazz. It was the nuts and bolts of Paladin threat mechanics I needed to complete the picture.


Well, it turns out that all the research in the world ain’t gonna help you if you’re a dumbass.

Now, that may seem harsh.

Hold judgment for a moment here, shall we?

(See what I did dere?)

See, I worked with Cassie, and it is work, on a brand new initiative Sidhe Devils is launching to bring fun for all levels back to the forefront.

Doing that, plus work, plus real life, meant zip time for, well, you know… playing.

I had about an hour last night, and then off to bed.

I figure, an hour… maybe, just possibly, I can pop into hordieland and pug a Coren Direbrew gankfest for the crit trinket, or maybe pug a regular ToC and see if my tanking pants finally drop.

Something quick.

I entered LFG as a DPS with interest in regular ToC, and then checked out my gear.

Looking pretty good, looking pretty fine.


Why the hell on the second of the two heroics I ran, Utgardt Keep, did I keep having people pulling off of me?

I ran a Heroic ToC as tank and we kicked ass… and an hour later, I went in as tank with a different crew in Heroic Utgardt Keep and it was damn near a wipefest. I was working my butt off holding aggro, and I have to say, at the end of it I was doing okay, but it felt pretty shaky. Holding aggro with two well geared Warlocks and a Ret Pally was very, very hard for me.


Clearly, grasshopper, you’re doing something wrong.

Rotations? Check.

All those other things like the single target taunt, multiple target taunt off a team member, Avengers Shield, all that jazz? Check.

Mana stuffs? Check.

Heck, using Ret Aura instead of Devotion? Check, even.

Hmm, damn, does my gear suck that bad? It’s almost all epics!

No, shoot, it looks great to me.

I must just seriously suck.

At that point, I get an invite for a regular ToC. “Can you tank?”


Oh what the heck.


I then take another glance at my gear, and notice that I DO have my new dodge rating trinket from Coren Direbrew equipped, but I DON’T have the “on use” function mapped to a macro yet.

I decide to hook it to Consecrate (since I flip between different Judgments), so it goes off whenever it’s off cooldown when I use Consecrate, and when is there going to be a time when I don’t want to use Consecrate?

And as I do so, I do the normal lazy man’s macro method.

I copy a previous “on use” macro tied to a spell, something from my Priest I think, and then clear out the name of the old item, open my inventory paperdoll and click the item to have it’s name automatically entered into the macro, then clear out the name of my old spell, and open my spellbook to click on the spell and have THAT name automatically entered in.

As I leaf through my spellbook, a certain jarring note of discordance tingles in my mind.

The spell I moused over on my button bar was Consecrate Rank 4…

The one in my spellbook goes up to, like, 8 or 9.

Wait, what?

Oh no.

Oh no freaking way.

I start mousing over the spells on my button bar for my tanking spec, and comparing them to the ones in my spellbook.

Wow, I must really rock, being able to almost hold threat using level 50 spells, huh?

Oh yeah, that’s right, baby.

Good old master Big Bear Butt went and tanked heroics in group without having the most current, within 30 levels, ranks of spells on his button bar.

A word to those of you who do not wish to be a dumbass like me.

If you dual spec very early, and you have a damage dealing leveling spec as your main, and an infrequently used spec like healing or tanking as your second (or a PvP spec as your second), and you do not ever actually DING on that second spec…

Your second spec’s button bars do NOT automatically update to the most recent spell like the active spec.

Now, why does this make me a dumbass?

Because I bloody well KNEW that!


But no, I went dual spec the first chance it was available on my Paladin, and I never, ever let the thought cross my mind that the spells I put on there were the same ranks as the day I started the spec.

Yep, changed things around, went through and updated, went in and tanked that regular ToC, and the group was so delighted that we went in and blew it apart a second time, in less time than it takes to eat a good waffle.

Had a crew with insane DPS  just trying for those rarely seen items like the Black Heart that never seems to drop, and we had no problems whatsoever.

I did get my new pants. 🙂

Seriously, that’s just lame.

Oh, and FYI before anyone mentions it… you do not need to have the spell rank listed in the macro, if you just use the spell name, it automatically casts the highest level one.

Just wow. Makes me glad I waited to dual spec my Druid until after I’d been 80 for 6 months. No chance I didn’t have the max level spells on that one.

That would have been really embarassing.

Not as embarassing as Mannyac on his Hunter, though.

I’ll never forget the day I was chatting with him about his then level 56 Hunter, back when there was no Burning Crusade, just vanilla WoW.

He was complaining about how hard it was for Kortenharig as Beastmaster to fight mobs without pulling aggro off his pet kitty.

I asked him if he’d gone out and tamed the critters with the highest rank of Claw so his pet was doing more damage. 

His response was, if I remember, something on the order of “There are different ranks of pet skills?”

He was still using his one and only pet, the kitty he tamed in Dun Morogh at level 10.

With level 10 skills.

Yeah, that makes me feel better every time.

30 thoughts on “Anyone can be a noob at times!

  1. Long ago I ran multiple 5 mans as the tank without knowing that I had a short cooldown taunt available, I thought the only tool I had available was my long cooldown AE taunt, made me work a lot harder. This was immediately after leveling, mostly solo cat.

    Recently I was fiddling around solo, got pulled into an Ony10 that had someone have to drop out, got into tank spec but the RL charged before I finished the swapover, so I did Ony10 OT duty on the whelps in cat gear. It’s not a hard fight and the healer was a stud anyway, but was funny. Especially since I did the same thing on Toc10 valks not long after (bear spec and cat gear), though it wasn’t too bad, much of the gear is shared outside of jewelry. Since I cat in Uld25, I’ve recruited a raidmate to remind me to swap spec back after tanking Thorim’s arena.


  2. This makes me feel a LOT better.
    I dualspecced my bear for the first time the other day and tanked Coren. Well, tried to. Until the point where survival instinct appeared to have gone missing from my action bar. Turns out that I was of course tanking as a bear-shaped tree.

    But as I pointed out to my amused group members…well at least I was wearing bear gear.


  3. Great post… Also got me thinking, since just putting the spell name in macros makes them cast the highest trained level every time, you could just make macros for ALL your spells. Nothing fancy, no trinkets, no nothing – just /cast [spell name], and use that on your action bars. If only I’d thought of that before hitting 80… :s


  4. lol! Great story… and makes me feel that much better after healing ulduar10 and ony10 this past week as a freshly dual spec’d holy priest… who never trained CoH – yes, I healed w/ Rank 1 CoH. Go. Me.


  5. Em – that isn’t the problem. The macros were just the signal. The problem is that only the action bars on your current spec get updated when you learn new spells. The other spec stays on the previous spell ranks.

    So if you always pickup new spells on the same spec, your alternate spec can get left behind on very old spell ranks – hence BBB’s level 50 tank abilities
    .-= Durathor´s last blog ..Dual Spec – Noob Mistake =-.


  6. Forgive me if someone already posted this, I didn’t see it anywhere when I skimmed the comments 🙂

    Mr. Butt, you can avoid this problem in the future by leaving the ranks off of your macros. Since Blizzard nerfed downranking, there’s no reason to use ranks other than the highest one you have:

    /cast Consecrate

    Automatically casts your highest ranked version of Consecrate.


  7. This is exactly why I’m a little patient when it comes to other gamers! I actually got this idea from when I was driving one day… I USED to constantly get mad and yell at people while they were driving. Not using turn signals, going slow, etc etc… until one day I was driving and I noticed that I did one of the things I absolutely hated other people doing.. but I had a perfectly legitimate reason for doing it.

    So now before I get upset in any situations I think of possible situations where it could be a legitimate reason for it happening! I may have saved a few heart attacks. haha
    .-= Derek B´s last blog ..A New Way To Level? =-.


  8. great moments in huntard history. went to do corin direbrew with some guildies. killed him the first two times when someone psts ‘you’re dpsing with two tankards?’. I had forgotten i had equipped them to run around brewfest like a two fisted drunk. doh!


  9. I really, really thought you must have forgotten Righteous Fury as I read down. There’s no end to the protadins I’ve know who’ve forgotten it on occasion… or the retadins I’ve known who’ve forgotten to turn it OFF after flipping from prot.

    And @Tatia: I did the exact same thing.


  10. i don’t tank very often on my paladin. dual specced to ret/holy. i got his tanking set DEF capped only to be able to tank heroics if anyone was desperate. i swear every time on the first pull i’m reminded very quickly (by the mobs) that Righteous Fury needs to be on.


  11. Add me to the “Righteous Fury” list.

    Reminds me of when I was doing the Tourny dailies on my Cat. I wasn’t quite at the gear level to solo Chillmaw, so I got in with a tank from one of the most progressed guilds on the server. I offerend to heal, but he said go ahead and DPS.

    When we were done he went all elitist on my, saying that I had to be “the worst druid on the server”. I pulled up recount, and sure enough I had only done 800 DPS. I laughed at myself and just flew on – partially confused because I know my DPS isn’t normally THAT bad, but comforting myself a little because for a good chunk of the fight I couldn’t seem to get in range and behind Chillmaw.

    Once I switched out of flight form, though, I realized that the OTHER problem was that I was still wearing my Lance from jousting.


  12. My epic fails tend to be more gear related. You know… Tanking with my fishing pole equipped… Tanking Hodir without my frost resist gear equipped… Changing from tank spec to boom spec, but leaving tanking gear equipped and going OOM in like 3 casts… Good times…

    My guild actually enjoys these little mistakes. “Oooh… the badass tank fails again!”. Some have even taken to gear checking me before a boss pull. Not that they’d tell me I have the wrong gear equipped mind you, but so that they can all step out of the room when I pull to watch me get squished. Good times… lol

    And yes, I am thankful to be in such a guild. They “get it”. It’s a game, and times like that make for great stories and lots of laughs later on. 🙂


  13. This reminds me of when I recently tanked DTK on my druid and was wondering why the hell I was having such a hard time holding aggro. The reason? My swipe was the cat version and not the bear version. DUH! After I switched them out I had no trouble. But seriously, now I have to go look at all my bars since I’m not sure I’ve been keeping up the new ranks with my trainings. It sucks to get into an instance and realize too late that something might be off (which I’ve never done.. no not me).


  14. I too was waiting for the “no Righteous Fury”. I have done that a few times, though not since they changed it to be always on unless you turn it off. Yes, even with a big red bar on my Pally Power staring me right in the face. I don’t even remember what level I was when I learned that you had to train higher levels of pet skills. I remember someone told me when my hunter was in her 30’s that I should get a cat from Swamp of Sorrows at 36 because it had Dash, but I don’t remember if I made the connection at the time to ranks of other skills. I totally don’t miss the Stable Shuffle from those days. One pet for fun, one pet for srsness, and one empty stable slot for the “training pet”. Hunters these days have it so easy!

    I have to say though, I’m going to have to go check the spells on my priest. She’s leveling shadow with a disc off-spec, and even though I swap out and check the trainer for both specs at every level, I don’t think I’ve every checked the rank of spells she actually has on her bar! Thanks for the tip, BBB 🙂
    .-= Asara´s last blog ..Quiet on the home front =-.


  15. A memorable CoS run comes to mind, the tank birngs his Pally and we prepare for a nice and easy run – except he just could not hold aggro…. and swore and swore in Vent about the dps’rs being too horny and whatnot – until he looked at himself and went quite, had forgot the Righeteous Fury….. since then we (or at least I always) either ask if the Fury is rolling (just to pole him) or check the protrait to see that the little icon is there.

    Oh this is the same tank that a few days ago shouted in gChat that *Todays new Rule for the Dragons: remind each other to loot the quest-item on daily HC!!!’. 😀


  16. I was thinking Righteous Fury all the way as well till you admitted it was the spell level/dual spec thing. I remember running a Heroic VH on my then poorly geared warlock and I had enough aggro to pull off of three pallys. After the second wipe we noticed that the tank didn’t have his Righteous Fury up, pointed it out, had a good laugh at his expense, and then cleared the place out like a bunch of madmen.

    Don’t feel too bad about the spell thing, I think most of us did it at some point. I was trying to heal UK as a level 71 with level 40 spells on my shaman, we made it to Ingvar before it just got to be too much and we called in a friends 80 to help out. I actually did this twice before I realized what the problem was.


  17. Okay, i can truthfully say, I have never forgotten Righteous Fury.

    I have my self buff tanking buttons all lined up.

    Before I go tanky tanky, i go clicky clicky.

    I do regularly forget to start an Aura after changing specs, though. Like, all the time.


  18. This reminds me of my priest. I where utgarde keep in level 40 spells (not a easy task). When i was asked why i downranked my spells it started to dawn on me.
    After that i’ve gone into the habit of buying spells in my main specc and switching to upgrade my off as soon as i’ve bought them all (and also to see if there are new ranks for my off spells).

    Here’s a tip: when you hit 80, remember to buy new spells for your off specc too^^ Today i found out that (after nearly a month of being resto) the lv 80 ranks of riptide and earth shield was still at the trainer.

    Keep up the good work, even if i have retired my druid it’s still fun to read your posts.


  19. I did an entire (and frustrated I might add) Halls of Lightning sans Righteous Fury. Realized it right before we got to Loken and decided to keep it a secret from my no doubt fuming party members.

    But, now I always know.
    .-= Hesston´s last blog ..Random screenshot =-.


  20. I hit “consecrate 4” and began laughing so hysterically my husband came over to see what was up…

    His reaction was, “I thought you couldn’t downrank anymore”


  21. A very imaginitive post to warn us about the pitfalls of dual spec, however, you’re not fooling anyone. We know you would never really do something as silly as this 😛 Seriously though, I didn’t know this was an issue until your post. You da man!


  22. I sort of had the same Holy/Shadow priest problem the other day. I was healing regToc in my holy spec with my holy gear on. It finishes and some guildies ask if I want to go beat on Direbrew. I say sure. They already have a healer lined up so I switch my spec to Shadow and then proceed to put out some pretty mediocre dps numbers. So I take a quick look and sure enough, I’m still in my holy gear. You know, the stuff with no hit rating on it. DOH!


  23. P.S.

    Don’t get me wrong, I love my dual spec. I’m excited that I have the option of leveling as a Shadow Priest, while also picking up experience in my desired endgame spec, Discipline.

    You just have to watch out for the little kinks until Blizzard irons them out 🙂


  24. I’m leveling my Priest with Disc/Shadow dual spec. I spend about 80% of my time in Shadow while soloing, but from time to time I’ll go Disc to heal an instance or open-world group content. I /always/ double check to make sure I’m using current-rank spells. I had an really, really terrible Nexus run at the end of which I realized I was using downranked Power Word: Shield, Flash Heal, and Penance >.>

    Here’s another pitfall …

    I’m talented into Penance in my Discipline spec, but of course not in my Shadow spec. If I talk to the trainer in my Shadow spec and a new rank of Penance is available at that level, I won’t be able to train it. So, whenever I’m at the trainer, I always train skills, swap specs, and then train again to ensure that I’m training new ranks of my talented abilities.


  25. You could always do what I did on my druid, never visit the trainer as resto. Then randomly go there to find out you have higher ranks of wild growth >.>

    Yeah that was a fun realization
    .-= Tatia´s last blog ..What to do? =-.


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