A blog post, from a different point of view

My apologies to the parrotheads for hijacking Jimmy’s song for my blog title. 🙂

I’ve been writing this blog thingie for quite a while, and I feel safe in believing that my long time readers, those who have stuck with me, have a pretty damn good sense of humor.

Either that, or they’re masochists and are needing their pain fix. Either way, works for me. 🙂

If you enjoy humorous posts from someone that does, occasionally, provide some helpful posts too, then you probably read Jong over at Forbearance.

Yes, I’ve mentioned him before. Hey, as long as he’s willing to handle all of Meg’s drama, I’ll keep plugging him. Patience of a saint, is all I’m sayin’.

Saint Jong of the Endlessly Enduring. Has a nice ring to it. 

Most recently, Jong highlighted a guest post over at World of Matticus.

This guest post at Matticus has acted kinda like a rocket amongst my friends.

When I asked one person if they’d seen the post, they said yes, and when I asked them what they thought, the answer was kinda garbled. Like, the ability to form coherent words out of individual letters was temporarily lost.

All I got out of ’em was “Wdlj tho0 Fuoba wasl;ib tha[oitn  periknaf thinkoauhfg?”

Now, that was a very illuminating look into the thoughts of my friend, but that’s not the kind of coherent I was looking for.

I don’t find it nearly so difficult to frame my own thoughts on that post.

And oh my yes, I do have a few thoughts on it.

First, let me say that I feel that the situation as presented was well described. As things stand now, yes, 5 person instance groups generally consist of a tank, a healer, and three DPS players of various classes. 

Also, again generally, currently all the variables that affect a 5 person instance group at level 80 are resulting in groups where, so long as the tank and the healer are well geared and well skilled, the exact composition, gear and skill levels of the DPS players are not critical factors in the success of a run.

However, after that point, we kinda diverge in drastically different directions.

For example, I don’t really think that the situation calls for accepting the way things are now as being the “normal state of affairs”, and then sucking off the tank and the healer for being awesome enough folks to bear the responsiblity of carrying the group on their slender shoulders.

No, I take a completely different approach.

The case as described is that DPS are, how did he phrase it? Oh yes, “just meat in the room”.

Well, instead of accepting that as the case and moving forward, how about wondering WHY?

For starters… we’ve had a gear level reset without a corresponding reset of content. We have the majority of existing 5 person content remaining the same, and in some cases being nerfed, while the gear available from running that content has leaped ahead.

Yes, the purpose was to get more people past the Naxx/ToC/Ulduar gearing point so that folks can enter ICC as a functioning guild, but a consequence has been to dramatically lower the difficulty level of 5 person content.

Add in to this the fact that the 5 person heroic content had, even before Ulduar, been tuned so that Crowd Control was optional and mostly disregarded, and you have a clear prescription for removing the utility of DPS classes except for basic buffs and pure damage.

Add one other factor. Most tanks now do, in tanking spec and gear from Emblems of Triumph vendors, more damage than fresh level 80’s in all item level 200 gear. 

That’s right, your average level 80 in Heroic drops and crafted gear will usually do less damage than a tank in pure vendor gear from those same Heroics, because Emblems of Triumph are that powerful. 

That certanly contributes to the feeling that DPS is an afterthought, doesn’t it? Tell me, have YOU ever heard someone in a pug say, “You suck, the tank is doing more DPS than you”?

If you’re the asshat doing the saying, I don’t want to hear it.

Do you remember Burning Crusade?

It was very common to have encounters with multiple mobs difficult enough that the majority of groups used crowd control to lock down at least one mob, maybe two, while the rest were burned down.

In Burning Crusade, it was not expected that a tank be able to take and hold everything successfully, and if he did, surviving was questionable. It was expected that a tank be able to take and hold most, but that some mobs would be distant enough ranged types, or dangerous enough fearing/stunning, powerhouse types that CC was desired, and skill in using it was sought after.

DPS was desired not just for their damage output, but also for the other things they could bring. Group utility.

Things change. It’s a fool that puts his hands up and tries to stop the tide as it comes.

But we can also take the time to point out that, just because things are a certain way, it doesn’t mean we are supposed to accept that it’s HOW THINGS SHOULD BE.

If DPS is undervalued, then to me it’s clear that things need to be retuned, if not now then in the next true content level, so that they are once again universally acknowledged as being an essential, respected part of the success of a run.

Earlier, when talking about how ‘generally’ the case for brute force was true, there were and are exceptions.

Halls of Reflection is an outstanding one.

I don’t care how good the tank or healer think they are, if the DPS players do not put out the raw damage in a fast enough manner, in a focused enough fashion, then Arthas will not be defeated. Period. (We’re pretending they soon hotfix the current following exploit, okay?)

I frequently see Crowd Control being used in Halls of Reflection, without the direction of the tank, to nail down riflemen and mages. And things work smoother because of it.

Things can be intentionally tuned so that, no matter what, the tank can’t ‘get ’em all’.

Think they can’t? Blizzard can always decide that tanks are getting out of control, CC is completely underutilized, players of DPS classes are feeling maligned and abused, and Blizzard can then go out and CHANGE IT.

Blizzard hasn’t really swung the nerf bat in years. Years.

The way people are acting, the air of entitlement I see, the elitist asshats in pugs, I really want it swung hard in some ways. Especially on those that play DPS classes that have been taught that spamming buttons for DPS on the recount meters is the only sign of skill at a class.

Used to be, a Hunter brought some ice trapping skills to the party, and a good trapper was damn well respected. Did he do DPS? Who cares, was he able to chain trap? THAT was a mark of skill.

If there are people that are being led to believe that an entire group of players can, amazingly enough, be referred to as “just meat in the room” with a straight face, then maybe things do need to change.

I’ve got a few suggestions. Maybe they are utterly unrealistic for WoW, and their implementation would result in something like what happened in Star Wars Galaxies. I don’t know.

But let’s talk about changing the dynamicfor a few minutes, something that Tish Tosh Tesh is outstanding at talking about.

We’ve got tanks, healers, and DPS in our 5 person runs.

In a group, one gathers up the enemy and holds their attention, one keeps the tank and, when necessary, the rest of the group alive, and then thereare the DPS whose function is to kill stuff.

The idea here is to have a group of people working together as a team. The nature of the roles provides variety, imposes a certain amount of built in tactical direction, and guides defining how a team succeeds.

But there are drawbacks, as we can see.

As things stand now, tanks are meant to generate and hold aggro on the enemy, and also survive awesome damage. Enemies have to put out epic damage, to keep a healer busy, and also to keep any old DPS from stepping up and being a tank. So tanks have to be able to survive massive damage, and mobs have to deal lots of damage, to differentiate them even more from DPS. 

As long as we’re talking about keeping healers busy. 

In instances, there are getting to be ever increasing AoE and persistent damage types, all designed to challenge a dedicated healer. Since the team has to HAVE a dedicated healer, that player has to be kept busy somehow. And if all you do is jump up damage to one target (tank) to really stress the healer, then it will inevitably result in wipes from the tank being one shot. So, to keep the healer occupied without frequently one shotting the tank, they have to spread the damage around to the group. A lot. In imaginative ways. Plus fears and things designed to make damage jump anyway.

The power of the current gear as related to the content, and the way Crowd Control is unused, can be fixed by changes in the next content level. Designing dungeons that don’t allow easy line of sight pulling of mobs that include ranged DPS in different directions would certainly help. Make them hit like a baastard or Curse or Fear, and you’ll quickly see some CC being brought in.

But this tank and heal thing is a poser, isn’t it.

What I’d like to see, to start with, is the elimination of damage output in a tank spec.

That’s right. I’d like to see tank specs do nothing BUT cause threat. No damage, or if there is damage, it’s so small a sneeze would bump it off Recount. Acknowledge that a tank’s role is to acquire and hold threat, NOT kill everything all by themselves.

Second, give EVERY class a tank spec. Every single one. And have that spec use the classes’ normal DPS gear stats.

Rogues? Give them a tanking spec that takes the feel of Dodge Tanking and runs with it. Threat generated by Dodging, AoE taunts, tricks like smoke bombs that stun or blind groups of mobs and cause high threat, the whole thing.

Priests? Enhance their bubble with multiple layers, let them do some serious threat from resisting damage and have them be healed by damage done to their bubble, have them base their tanking on holding fast in the face of the enemy and trusting in the Light.

It can be done.

Take away the option of pouty little children that “Take their toys and go home” if they don’t get their way in a group.

Oh, did the tank leave in a huff? That’s fine, he sucked anyway and was prone to tantrums. Which of the remaining four of us want to tank the rest? We’ve all got a spec and gear for it, after all.

Dedicated healers? Do away with them as well.

Give every class a mix of healing and damage spells. Every class would be hybrid DPS/Healers.

You could choose to specialize in DPS or heals, the same as any other hybrid, but the capability of tossing heals would still be there, just like the Shaman, Druid and Paladin.

If you change the dynamic, tune content so that the DPS are mostly responsible for healing themselves, and working together to toss the tank a heal or two but mostly work together to control and kill the mobs. 

Perhaps even modify things even further, so that as with Blood specced Death Knights, the more DPS you do or the spells you use to CAUSE DPS are what you use to heal you.  

Improved Leader of the Pack is all about self heals from your own successful critical strikes. Take that a step further.

Making it work comes down to tuning the instances for it. Less “All out damage on tank”, more wide spread damage.

You would go from a situation where the tank is normally getting nailed with a boulder in the face and chain healed, to a situation where the tank is being nibbled to death by ducks for little bites of damage. He’s there more to hold all the nibblers off the group and give them a chance to focus on killing the enemy in order of importance.

If the tank is NOT doing damage, then you can’t win just by keeping the tank alive. You HAVE to have people doing DPS. If each player is capable of SOME self healing, then if the tank dies, it’s not necessarily a wipe, it’s just a more chaotic situation that has to be recovered by the players all combining their heals and DPS in a skilled fashion on the fly.

And truthfully, without being locked into a “We MUST have a dedicated main healer” situation, the door would be opened for much less spiky damage and silly mechanics in the first place.

Do I think we’ll ever see anything that drastic in WoW?

No, never. It’d be a completely different game. I’d like to see it, myself, but no we never will.

People say, with justification, “Don’t fix it if it ain’t broke.”

And the millions of customers that play WoW are a pretty strong indication that it’s not broke.

But I do think that we’re in the middle of some strange times. And I also think that, as things stand now, asshats are feeling encouraged to believe that this is the way it’s supposed to be, and are being abusive to others in groups and feel entitled to throw their elitist attitudes and elitist DPS standards in others’ faces.

I look forward to the day when doing the current Heroics will give rewards nobody wants for end game, in the same way that Burning Crusade Emblems of Heroism and drops are still useful for a little while while leveling, but are then abandoned forever.

I only hope that when that day comes, things will be designed and tuned so that DPS classes will be acknowledged once more as having utility in a team above and beyond pure damage output, and people will no longer have the effrontery to call them “just meat in the room” and expect to be taken seriously.

43 thoughts on “A blog post, from a different point of view

  1. Hey BBB, I haven’t had the time to read through all the comments yet despite having this page open for days on both my iPhone and pc browser.

    Anyway, the simplest way I can think of changing the dynamic has already been tried by blizz. Unfortunately the cries from the community always ring out loud, often before release now that every kid and their pet rabbit can get into beta.

    The answer is more loose mobs. Not necessarily more mobs, just CC’able loose mobs. At this point in time life could be grand for the “trapping classes”. The scourge are kinda dead, but still living and in a way possessed… Mmmm everyone’s cc would work.

    The trick then is to give them a “heroic buff”, which allows them to ignore taunts for say 30-60 seconds.

    Tank can’t control them – that’s up to the dps, at least initially.

    Of course the cries of “I didn’t order PvP with my PvE” would ring out and unless Blizz grew a pair it would be nerfed before release.

    CC was a natural, accepted, even loved part of TBC until the release of MgT.

    Funny we cried for CC for 60 levels, got it for 10, were happy to see the end to it polluting our damage meters…. But now we have neither a challenge or a better gauge of ability beyond linked acheivements, recunt and NoobScore.
    .-= Gnomeaggedon´s last blog ..Dear Healers, Do Your Freakin Job!!! =-.


  2. “That’s right. I’d like to see tank specs do nothing BUT cause threat. No damage, or if there is damage, it’s so small a sneeze would bump it off Recount. Acknowledge that a tank’s role is to acquire and hold threat, NOT kill everything all by themselves.”

    Now, I don’t know about you, but I enjoy being able to use my tanky abilities outside of instances. I really don’t think this is viable, as I can’t drag a DPS with me every time I want to pull a few groups of mobs wihout dying at the first complication.

    I agree with everything else, but I never though my DPS could stand a sneeze on recount compared to a decently geared party.


  3. I am a pally healer(who duel specs and tanks when the need arises). I run with a guild-mate tank almost always and when gearing our many alts we swapped roles for faster randoms. We are the jerks you talk about(over-geared group carrying teammates) and I am not even remotely sorry. I agree the skill has left the game. CC used to be important but(note sarcasm and disdain) the poor casual players want good gear to its unfair /cry. I raided very seriously in the 40 man days when if 3 or 4 of 40 died you were already calling a wipe. I don’t feel like I get extra bonus’s for being a tank or healer but I do realize that I have no wait time for a random. DPS sadly is dime a dozen and you will not wait more then 10 seconds to replace. I know I am that way in randoms on my lock and my mage and my shaman. I can be replaced and if I am a dick it will take 20-30 min to get into another random probably.

    I am also the guy who bails on Gundrak and Oculus the random dungeon that I have just done 8 times cause it wants me to each time having to explain every fight 15 min logistics break sure why not. that being said me and my tank friend go out of our way to find fresh 80’s we are believers in helping people learn. I especially have a soft spot for under-geared tanks. Why well helping someone gear and giving them pointers is awesome. I put up with a lot from DPS and we discuss and judge everyone we play with on vent.

    “The meat in the room” issue if you are annoying. When alting on my druid I can’t stand people who keep chatting in party and trying to explain the game to me and the other four guys its a vote to kick. Why because my heirloom gear and the similarly named guy in heirloom gear and the two random PuG fellows that are wearing gear crafted by an obvious alt name(I inspect everybody) don’t want to hear about how the disenchant button works or his loot rules that don’t matter.

    What I would like to see is a tier of dungeons that is the hardcore level. I want it to give you prestige achievements. Bring in the need for CC and the longer duration to get through. Don’t buff the gear. Same gear drops. or tokens for gear with identical stats that you can pick the model on. All you get is the ability to say hey I am a good player and will help with guild progression.

    I will continue to replace the meat in the room if they cause me not to enjoy the game.

    I like to push my limits make big pulls and not hear whining. If you just DPS and don’t complain when we decide we can go with half or quarter mana. You CC when appropriate which is hard these days I agree consecrate down oh oh can’t sheep or trap or shackle(holy crap someone remembered priests used to shackle).

    I have played with three fresh 80 where I loved them to death and I have replaced dps that is definitely some of the most geared DPS that just made me angry. The I taunt and don’t follow the kill order 80 is a vote to kick. DPS that thinks the skull is the tanks target even while wearing ToC gear is a vote to kick. If you are rude illiterate or annoying its a vote to kick. and when I run outta votes to kick I pull the tank and healer plug cause normally I own both. The vent rawr of laughter comes often and I have done so great heroics with the random grouper.

    Blizzard gets more subscribers every time they make gear more accessible to everyone. Plus people who don’t or can’t raid complain loudest when they can’t gear again /cry.

    You have some valid points but honestly blizzard made them into meat in the room when they could be replaced instantly. Emblems are gravy that just pile up theses days. I used to never run heroics because if it wasn’t with my guild it wasn’t worth my time because building a group was a pain and the self entitled I am a great DPS often decided that he would try to hold the group hostage. now he has no playing cards. I don’t have to look to replace him by the next boss. The random grouper will in about now.

    The problem is pure difficulty design and the unwillingness to learn the dungeons and progress through the slowly.

    Your opinions and ideas are good and you make several compelling arguments
    Hands down when I am the meat in the room I know my place.

    Tanks and healers run the world. (I would be interested in seeing an MMORPG that implemented you everybody is everything system.)


  4. Hey, I’ve been a long time reader and just posting for the first time. My character’s Ilnezhara on the server Eonar and if you look me up you’ll see I play a druid as well. I’ve been tanking for a good long time, not on a druid as much as on my protection paladin but I have a good idea of how the game works: I healed classic, tanked and healed BC and now quite regularly tank WotLK instances.

    So to begin with, I think your point about tanks routinely doing more damage than the DPS is quite true and not a sign of good/badness. I pretty much stack Block (value and rating)/agi for heroics, combine that with the fact that I routinely pull three to four packs at once and use DPS trinkets my damage is on average like ~4.5 on my pally and ~4 on the druid. Not very many DPS can pull that without buffs. That being said I’ve had HEALERS yell at DPS for doing less damage than I do. Seriously? STFU and heal, I don’t care what your main’s DPS is (these asshats are usually like “ell oh ell I pull a 7k DPS” neglecting to mention that this is in a 25 man raid with every buff under the sun). To be honest, as a tank, sharing the benefits of my gear with some newly 80s to help them get some new gear makes me happy and gives me something to do in my free time. I do not think “meat in the room” (bloody brilliant expression by the way) equates to bad DPS, not in the least. That being said, I lose patience when people repeatedly do things like: have a pet with growl on, Bladestorm on the pull or throw a seed before I even get to the pack; but that was addressed in a previous blog post of yours!

    Sorry about that and with all huge and possibly incoherent rants about people’s ridiculous behavior in 5 mans aside, I do yearn for the BC days in some regards and not in others. Do I want CC and the skill required to be considered “good” to come back? Yes and no. Do I want to wait for a group for hours because of the whole “Need mage for H MgT PST me please, tipping 100g” thing? No, bring the player and not the class, GC’s words and I like them. That being said it’d be very nice to see the return of some form of CC, just not class specific requirements. My alt in BC was a hunter, I really really miss trap kiting on moroes while trying to hold my own on the meters; in fact I quit my hunter in 3.0 as soon as I saw what the game had become. On another note I do not miss the one hour long five mans; I think my time in game is worth more than that. Remember how, even with a BT geared tank, pre-3.0 it would take like 45 minutes to clear Heroic Botanica? Sure it was 7 (or was it 6?) badges when it happened to be the daily, but it was incredibly painful and took a long time to complete.

    That’s my take on this, I know some of you feel the same.


  5. I wonder if the “meat in a room” feeling comes from the fact that as people begin to drastically outgear content, DPS, and even healers to an extent, can start slacking. Tanks, however, can’t.

    This realization struck me last night, during an all-guild random run. Our healer kept AFK’ing and just generally wasn’t paying attention, because of my high health and was telling me so over Vent. Meanwhile, I’m still hard at work, paying attention to his mana, what the mobs have targetting, how to get the next pull, while keeping the run going and not stopping to skin (which I never get to do as a tank – because that would slow the run down).

    I agree with you BBB on implementing challenging dungeons again. I remember the strats that when into pulling trash in hMgT. At first, tanking the new ICC instances was great – people were paying attention and it really felt like everyone was pulling their weight and working as a team. But even that’s starting to fade a little from FoS.

    And when I see people in good gear putting out crap DPS, not moving out of bad stuff, and just goofing off, it makes me so mad as a tank. Because I can’t behave like that. The whole success of a run is pretty much solely on a tank’s shoulders – the speed, the smoothness, etc. You can’t pull too fast or too slow, you can’t pull too many or too few. And you certainly can’t stop to skin or mine or even AFK for a moment to get a drink or answer a phonoe or whatever it is that DPS get to do.

    So bring back the crowd control, the thinking, the need to extend an effort. And then the mentality of “meat in a room” will fade. Because I never thought of DPS as “meat in a room” in BC. They were “sheeper, trapper, silencer, banisher” and they were my teammates, instead of a burden on my shoulders.


  6. I love the hybrid class. I like my hunter … liked it more when I had to manage the pet too … because all the fun stuff has been stripped from the class. It’s now whack-a-mole dps. CD up … hit it!

    Yes, I lament the loss of CC. Truth to tell though … I think it’s gone not as a design decision but because most folks can’t really pull it off. The Pug-O-Matic makes it even worse. You can’t possibly count on it.

    I ran CoS in cat last night … pretty much takes an act of god to make me tank a pug. I was added last obviously. By the time I got there the “tank”, a pally said “Someone go do the crates.” (This is after they were IN Strat.) to which the hunter responded “What crates?” During the ensuing argument about who was going to do it I had gone back and done it. The tank and the mage were guildmates who proceeded to ignore everyone else and just plow through, because they could. The tank picked up maybe 70% of the mobs the whole time. I cat tanked a lot to keep the priest alive. The hunter was along for the ride. At the end they didn’t even chat with Arthas at the start of the gauntlet.

    My point in relating this is that as long as this kind of group is even remotely possible they can’t have CC or all hybrid classes (although the idea is intriguing!) because it’s too hard a concept. Unless they completely rework every mechanic … which they won’t do.


  7. The way I see it, you can either continue to have the random-pugger system, or you can have content that is impossible to faceroll, but you can’t have both. This was and to a large extent still is the problem with Halls of Reflection; that place is fun and intense and I love doing it with my guild, but if I get it on random I know I am almost certainly going to eat a massive repair bill because I hate to be that jackass that just bails. And I *am* a heavily geared paladin; getting and holding threat on multiple mobs even with an equally geared mage and a rogue chasing each other around Recount is normally trivial for me.

    The response of a very large proportion of the DPS I’ve grouped with on random to this post and to sometimes it seems like anything at all would be “lol” and nothing else. The reputation of being idiotic meat that expects to be carried has been earned just as the reputation of tanks as divas and control freaks has been earned. I *love* playing with good DPS, I appreciate the hell out of every utility ability the DPS in my guild have and miss them when I don’t have that to rely on as a tank. But most of the DPS I meet in randoms are not good.

    What I actually would like to see is another tier of content that I could only describe as five-man raids. I think this is what heroic dungeons used to be, until they got turned into badge-farms; but what I am thinking is dungeons like the new Icecrown ones. Give them better loot, give them better incentives, make them much harder and not completable without a group where everyone is on their toes, and *take them the hell out of the random system*.


  8. I forgot to add to my earlier comment, I would be very unhappy with removing tank damage and just making it raw threat. That’d work fine in group play, but would practically eliminate one of my favorite diversions in the game: soloing old content.


  9. My main’s a prot warrior, and I used to never think about DPS as “just” dps – especially since I can’t DPS. I’m not designed to build huge amounts of AoE threat, nor am I designed to kill anything – and that used to be just fine. Then WotLK got released, including a brand new tank capable class. Now we’re faced with two tank classes that excel at AoE threat and do excellent damage – to the point where CC is hard to use *because* of the AoE tanking mechanics. As a result, CC withers away and with the surge of Paladin and DK tanks, AoE DPS classes start to close their threatmeters permanently.

    In my opinion as to your idea, BBB, to give everyone a multispec/multitalent, I’m not sure that would really work. I’m already disliking the trend of DPS being hugely interchangeable – where’s the flavor? It’s turning all pretty bland.

    I have a rogue, because I *like* to sap, stealth, stun (I suck at blinding) *and* to help out a (new) tank with Tricks of the Trade.
    I have a mage, because I sometimes like to stand in the back, wiggle my fingers, FrostNova and blink away.
    I have a kittybear because, well because I like to pick herbs in flightform, but I’ve grown to like ripping things to shreds, and I wanted to learn about the flavor of bear tanking. Similar about a Ret/Prot pally.

    Note, though, that I don’t heal. Perhaps someday, somewhere, but the idea of healing doesn’t appeal to me as of yet. I know players who’d rather heal or tank than DPS. I know DPS who’d rather quit than heal or tank 🙂
    Even if you give everybody the option to switch between all three roles, I submit that you’ll see the same distribution as you see now with dual-specs – a lot of DPS, and few healers and tanks. I think it’s the mindset of the player, and you can’t fix that by changing the mechanics of the game.

    I want the flavor back. I want my rogue to sap again, the mage to sheep I want to feel the difference between being a ret pally, a blood-DK and a rogue, depending on what I play. But as it seems to be right now, there’s no difference between my DPS toons. Sadly, that means that when I tank, I need a friendly, sometimes forgiving healer, and “just 3 random DPS” (who don’t cringe when they *have* to run with a warrior).

    On another note, it annoys the heck out of me that as life gets easier in heroics for DPS and healers as their gear improves, the tank’s life gets harder. On the warrior, I keep some “old” gear around to keep my rage up, I hear from Tankadins that fewer heals needed means fewer return on mana. I don’t know what a grown up bear issues are as gear increases – I defer that to you 🙂

    Oh. Umm… Sorry. Wall of text… and rants… How’d that happen?!?! Maybe I need to start a blog?


  10. Fire, I’d tank if occasion demanded if I had a class that could swap at will (or a classless system that allowed me to change roles at will). It’s not my preferred role, but if the team needs it, I’d do it. If I’m playing a Druid in WoW, for example, and the team needs a tank but I’m in kitty mode, I’ll switch. I get more out of my character that way. If I could Evasion Tank as a Rogue, I would dust mine off and have a lot more fun with it, simply because I could do more with it.

    No, this won’t work for lazy or idiotic players. For those who enjoy playing and aren’t afraid of learning or adapting, though, a straitjacket system of classes and combat roles won’t be as interesting as one with more flexibility. That’s why this won’t work as a straight shoehorn into existing WoW structure. But imagine the potential of a game where combat is more about players and tactical flexibility than classes, gear and simple DPS rotations.
    .-= Tesh´s last blog ..Avatar Art =-.


  11. While tanks and healers don’t ‘deserve’ more rewards. I think the DPS of the world would benefit if they had some more motivation (of whatever sort). Currently, there is a shortage.

    I kind of like the idea of having a tank do threat but no damage. But stepping back from it a bit, threat is a completely unrealistic view of combat. If you have squishy you want to protect, the shield bearer had better be prepared to do that through interposition alone. Or better yet, through a group of shields (shield wall). Does PvP mimic PvE? To the extent that it does not, is an indication of how much PvE is an artificial system.


  12. No matter how many roles you give people, if they don’t play them, it won’t affect anything. In my guild we had a shortage of tanks at one point and so we asked people to use alt spec for tanking so we’d have more to pull from, even getting them geared up. Almost all decided to go back to DPS because it was easier. There are 6 classes that can play multiple roles but most of them I would bet stay DPS because they just don’t want to do anything else. Would giving every class that option change the percentages? Maybe at first as people satisfied their curiosity but then eventually people would go back to what they were comfortable with. I think the only confirmed way to permanently increase the population of the less used roles (i.e. tank, healer) is to increase your total population because only that small percentage will be interested in doing it.


  13. To the author of the original post on Matticus that spawned all this: No. Just, no.

    To BBB: While I agree that there needs to be more interaction amongst the 5-man teams, I disagree on the reasons why.

    My average time to complete a Heroic when I first hit 80, way back before Ulduar: 60 Minutes.

    My average time to complete a Heroic when ToC was released: 40-50 Minutes.

    My current average time to complete a Heroic: 20-30 minutes.

    When I first started running Heroics, while CC was almost nonexistant, it still required coordination amongst the 5-man team to complete. The snake boss in Gun’drak required ranged to stand on the other side of me so that I grabbed the adds on the way by. The trash even in Nexus required the DPS to kill the worst caster first (often the healer!) or we probably had issues with it. Some of the mobs in UP needed to be LoS’d around the corner to prevent folks from being feared into other packs. Don’t even get me started on Old Kingdom.

    Now… unless over half the group is new 80’s or alts, there is almost no need to use these tactics because folks are so overgeared. In some cases, if any two of the tank, healer, or dpsers are enough overgeared, it doesn’t really matter where the 3rd group is.

    The issue is less the design of the instances and more the fact that Blizzard has done everything in its power to help folks get geared up for the endgame. We have just hit the second gear reset since most of the 5-mans were released, and they need to be retuned to provide a challenge once again. Perhaps a “super-Heroic” mode.

    Eh, who am I kidding, I just want to faceroll until I’m done with Heirloom gear and have a healthy stock of Emblems for purple gems.
    .-= Kaethir´s last blog ..Ever Onward =-.


  14. Solarflash, you’ve made one of my points for me. You just stated that in your opinion, the problem is “idiots”. And then asked how any of what I’m talking about would solve that problem.

    Hey, if that’s your take on the key issue, you are welcome to your opinion. But I don’t think “idiots” is the core issue. And talking about all sorts of other topics all based around having fun and making the game equally challenging was pretty much the topic of the rest of the post.

    If you and other people are going to make, as your point, that something won’t work because most people are stupid compared to you, I don’t know what to tell you.

    I thought that I had been fairly clear in stating that the content as is could not support the changes I was suggesting as being interesting, that you’d need other content that was tuned around my ideas, and if content was built requiring all members of a group to contribute to succeed then if people were forced to adapt in order to succeed at all, most folks will choose to either pay attention and learn how to play to get what they want, or they will move on to other games.

    For myself, I really don’t like playing with people that aren’t willing to put forth the effort. I’m not really interested in coming up with motivational techniques to make lazy people put forth more effort in team situations in games. I can see that most MMO designers DO try to think of these techniques, but for myself, I just like to consider ideas that would be fun for a group of friends of mine to play.


  15. It would be a different game, but I think it would be interesting to think about Bear’s idea of giving every class a tanking, healing, and damage spec (hopefully without requiring three different sets of gear). Different encounters could be tuned towards a different sort of tank, healer, or dps.

    Hunter and Warlocks could tank by using particular pets. The pets would be a bit less dynamic, especially in terms of picking up multiple mobs, but the players could use their main characters to channel situational buffs or heals to them, making them more survivable. Perhaps they would be the best single target aggro holders.

    Priests and Pallies would tank with bubbles. If they did it right, they would be no damage. However, they’d generally be weaker in holder aggro. They would be great for encounters where the boss/mobs hit like a truck, but the rest of the party would need to be careful not to pull off them.

    Shamans and Mages would use a magic shield with, lets say, 10 charges. Each charge reduces their damage taken by 10%, and they lose one charge each time they’re hit. The spell can’t be re-cast until at least 6 charges are gone. They’d be good at holding AoE aggro and at debuffing their targets, but would take cyclical damage as their shields went down.

    Druids and Rogues would tank using the same high-dodge, high-health model they have now. They’d be good at picking up multiple adds and would stack bleed or poison effects on them to maintain threat even if the tank moved on. However, they’d take spikey damage due to dodge’s all-or-nothing aspect, so they would not be desirable tanks where those spikes often proved fatal (there you’d want a Priest or Pally instead).

    Warriors and Deathknights would tank would big armor and dodges, parries, and taunts. Probably both would be able to use shields. They would do worse AoE threat than the Druids, Rogues, Shamans and Mages, but would have a wider variety of stuns and silences. They would take fairly consistent damage, without as many spikes or cycles, and would have a wider variety of cooldowns to deal with it.

    That’s just a rough sketch of possibilities, but you can see how different sorts of tanks would be useful in different types of situations. The same sort of line up could be done for healers (or classes that mitigate the damage of others or permit them to ignore it…perhaps a rogue healer really just shoots his party members with a morphine/adrenaline dart gun) and damage dealers. It would provide an interesting dynamic. Blizzard will never do it, but I wouldn’t be surprised if some other MMO tries it at some point, as a way of making the holy trinity less annoying, though not breaking out of it altogether.


  16. Letting anyone do anything provides for fantastic flexibility. Players have to pay attention and do their job and maybe even shift jobs midraid. They have to make sure they know that others are doing *their* jobs. Players can change their playstyle without grinding up a new character or logging in to an alt.

    It also allows for more varied raid design. Imagine a raid where there are traps or phases where *everyone* has to shift to “tanking stance” for the duration. Or another, where there are far too many damage dealing critters or traps for one healer to keep up, but if everyone takes a little initiative, they can keep themselves alive until the heat is off. Certainly some players would hate it, preferring rather to just find a niche and spam 1,2,3,1 for the duration of the raid. For those who want more involved tactics, greater importance placed on spatial awareness, and most importantly, to avoid relying heavily on one or two key classes or combat roles (those nasty, tricksy elitist jerks), a more flexible system would be just the thing to keep a game alive well past the rote gameplay.

    In other words, “learning your class” would involve a lot more to do, and could keep someone interested for longer. Sure, some would rather play in easy mode (one more reason this probably won’t work in today’s WoW), and it probably wouldn’t be wise to make *all* raids this variable, but giving players options is almost always a Good Thing. Especially when your game population is old, whiny and clamoring for “innovation”.

    “Bring the player, not the class” is an established design ethic. This is an extension of the philosophy.
    .-= Tesh´s last blog ..Avatar Art =-.


  17. Hey, if you don’t like the idea of having each class be able to fill any role, while keeping the flavor of their class, that’s your business.

    Would it still be WoW as you know it now? Of course not.

    I personally don’t think that there is ever only one way to do things, and that is the way that everyone must obey, myself. I try not to close my mind to other possibilities… like locking myself into a system that is based on segregated tank, healer, dps roles, and assuming that is the only way things can work and still be fun, or that some classes must spend all their life as tank while other classes must spend all their life as DPS, and if you want something else, play the class for 2 monhts to level up first.

    Plenty of other videogames, other MMOs in development, and if I feel like speculating on things thats my prerogative.

    You know, it wasn’t that long ago that each class only had one spec that was considered it’s “end game raid” spec.

    Things change, all the time. Improvise, adapt and overcome, or be left behind in the dustbin of history. 🙂

    Music break!

    “It’s my prerogative….”

    I now return to my previously scheduled dreaming of writing Converging Forces.


  18. One of the biggest contributers to Blizz doing away with CC is that they wanted to make the dungeons shorter (less than an hour). Taking the time to coordinate CC and then pull, etc, took up a good amount of time. So Blizz tuned the dungeons low so that people playing it safe could CC but also those wanting to go fast and had the skill to hold everything could do so. This has led to 15 min UK, and 12 min AN runs. I could remember a night of only getting in 1 or 2 heriocs in BC because of the time involved in getting the group and then completing the instance. Add in wipes cuz of the difficulty and then CC time and the length of the instance and you’d have 2 hr Shadowlabs and 1.5 hr Shattered Halls. When you are directed to lower the time of completing an instance, the two main things that are gonna get hit are, length and difficulty, which will continue to scale down as the gear level increases.


  19. Why not have instances scale in difficulty/rewards based on the average level/gear of the players? Not such a difficult change, and it would definitely make older content worth the time invested.


  20. The only point in the referenced post that has any validity would be for tanks to get a small gold bonus to pay for repairs. My wife has a Prot Warrior and a Resto Druid and the difference in repair bills at the end of a night of playing are considerable. Of course proper guilds will be sure to have a way to compensate the tanks for their expenses.

    One way to not be “meat in the room” in random heroics is to bring some utility. When my warlock zones into an instance I drop a soulwell and a fish feast off the bat. I also say “Hi”.

    I’d like to see some CC come back into the game, but given the lack of demons in Northrend versus BC, my “Banish Demon” key moved off of my main bars. It’s getting lonely and has taken to staying up all night eating wings and slamming six packs. He texts his “Sheep” and “Frost Trap” buddies and they spend hours moaning about how left out they feel.


  21. Good blog my friend. Some point i agree, some point I didn’t. I agree that Blizz should bring CC back to Heroics. I missed the way in TBC to CC in heroic. Hunters didn’t know how to trap. Mage would not bother to sheep. Lock didn’t like to banish elements. Instead of CC, DPS burned thru everything. Heroics should be tricky. Like HoR, CC rifleman and rogue could minimize group damage and helped to reduce the stress on healer mana sucking. Heroics in TBC were being like that. There were a lot of trick pull. But, it showed what the teamwork was and all the fun came from. Combining force was not the only one way to succeed. Control mobs with proper killing order were the KEY to conquest in Heroics or even in Raids.


  22. It’s true. As a survival hunter all I really bring to a group is pure dps, nothing more. At least MM hunters have trueshot aura. Me? I have nothing. Maybe the odd fish feast. A lot of hunters spent time fine-tuning their trapping and crowd control skills in BC, only to have them go completely to waste when WOTLK came out. Now there’s heroic Halls of Reflection which is 9 times out of 10 a clusterfuck wipefest. I always tell the tank “let me know if you want me to CC a mage or hunter to make it easier on the group”. They always decline and the inevitable wipes occur as people dps different targets and the tank struggles to hold aggro on 5+ mobs. The one time a tank actually agreed, and we fought out in the open instead of back in the boss cubby holes, and I CC’d 1 mob using freezing trap, it was a cake walk. Sometimes when things get out of control I’ll freeze trap a mob for the hell of it, but of course some mage or warlock breaks CC by nuking it.

    If we had been doing crowd control all along, Heroic HoR would be easy and I’d have my damn boots already.


  23. For the record – bacon is freakin’ awesome. 😉

    Moving along – I’m mostly along with you for the “Tanks should only cause threat” ride. I don’t necessarily think it should be a spec thing, because how would one level feral/prot spec? But maybe do it as the DK’s do it – presence. Warrior’s could do it with stances. Druids as a bear, but switch to kitty for dps. Pally’s with a Pompous Aura or something that would generate aggro. (Really, every time I hear “By the light!” I wanna smack them. 😛 ) But having it be a threat thing instead of damage would definitely make DPS “more valuable” for 5-mans.

    Mind you, when it comes to raiding, and particularly the latest content, saying that DPS is “meat in the room” couldn’t be more false, even if the tank is breaking 3k dps.

    Now, I’m not quite with you on letting other classes tank, though. My thoughts and feelings on certain archetypes is that they if they’re in a group fight, they will stand at the back and hurt folk. You don’t put your artillery on the front line – it just doesn’t make sense. You wouldn’t do that with archers or fire-throwing men in dresses, either.

    Giving some secondary roles to DPS for utilty, such as the long-lost art of crowd control, might help regulate this issue of deeps being undervalued, but this could re-create the problem of “bringing the class, not the player.” Maybe something like that could be dealt with by giving every class a viable CC option? Mage’s sheep works on all types of trash. Priest’s shackle works on all types of trash. And so on.
    .-= Naturalregis´s last blog ..Ulduar is one sexy lady. =-.


  24. I like. Very much. I still say BC was the best videogame I’ve ever played. Its what brought me into WoW and the team work required was what did it. I very much miss CC and I have to respect that Blizz wants to move away from it (for whatever reasons.) I have to agree that the specifics you detail in your post are not likely to come to pass, but the notion that the teamwork aspect ought to be rebuilt is one I would like to see.


  25. @Sarabian…


    No, no, no.

    I loved your post, but I think you missed the point.

    The point is, for DPS to no longer be considered the “meat in the room”, I’m saying that the most important step is that the content be so challenging AND varied that every member must perform their roles well, or it WILL fail. You CANNOT continue to have content that provides gear or Emblems that everyone wants for end game be content that two people can CARRY the rest through.

    Did failpugs run Shattered Halls and expect to be carried?

    Sure, sometimes. But you smacked them in the mouth often enough, and they STOPPED going, unless they got a tank and healer that truly were so geared out from raids that they COULD carry the rest through.

    Was it common to find those runs? No, because there was nothing there to send them back into it… until the Isle brought the highest level of Emblem of Heroism gear, and they started running it again.

    Once there was no attraction to raiders to run it… there were no random pug run throughs. If you got run through, it was by your friends in your own raiding guild, trying to gear you up to join them in raids, and if you sucked, they’d make sure you heard about it.

    No, make it so that a skilled team of five MUST work together well or fail, and things WILL change.

    As things stand now, I’m mostly making these suggestions completely tongue in cheek, to entertain folks like Chawa, because I don’t expect anything to change in any way. I don’t see how it can.


  26. Designing dungeons that don’t allow easy line of sight pulling of mobs that include ranged DPS in different directions

    That sounds like a dig at the Halls of Reflection, but they’ve already done this in the Pit of Saron and most of Forge of Souls, with casters in a group just too far away from each other to build threat on both without running back & forth. It’s either a not-so-subtle hint that they want us to Crowd Control or designed for a Death Knight tank.

    And besides, LoS complemented CC in BC heroics. It was practically necessary for trapping casters, or for moving the rest of a group away from a sheep.


  27. Morning! I finished reading your post last night and was speechless. I think it was the idea of every class getting a tank spec that shocked me the most, every class becoming a hybrid. You’re a crazy radical! 😛

    I do think you’ve nailed it on identifying how the idea that “DPS are just meat in the room” has come about. It makes me wonder why did Blizzard change the dungeon challenges so much, when comparing BC dungeons to Wrath dungeons. Of course, I can’t forget about their most recent treatment of Oculus either. If BC dungeons were so challenging, where was the QQ’ing then? Or was there? And as a result, Wrath dungeons were created differently?


  28. This idea of yours is very intriguing, and I feel it would work well in a different sort of way.

    I have always been one to say that the best WoW has ever been was BC. We had tanks, healers, hybrid DPS capable of healing/tanking for short stints when needed, and CC DPS. Everybody had a role, and that role was important. The Emblems you got from BC were helpful for an early raider, but for the most part useless for and endgamer. You needed to raid endgame – prove your worth – in order to get the best. I know, that’s a crazy-ass idea, proving that you deserve the best equipment in the game instead of purchasing it for running 5-mans for a few weeks.
    .-= Nim (Ankh)´s last blog ..Kris Kringle: Quicklinks =-.


  29. The epic levels of sarcasm in that post is … well … epic.

    I, as a person that has 3 80s – warrior tank, paladin tank and shaman healer – am very very rarely the meat in the room. All of my guys have a DPS spec, but I almost never use it.

    I have a good group of folks I play with. They know their roles and do them well, so I tend to be a bored healer in most boss fights. 5-man heroics are uberboringtothemax. I love it. PUG in a single DPS (last night we got someone named Gangstashoota (something close to that) – yes he was a hunter freshly 80) and everything goes to shit. Of course, the child playing the hunter screams and yells about LTP!! U SUK!!! and bails after firing off volley after volley before the tank had even pulled. He does not have a clue the rest of us were in vent screaming with laughter at him, but that’s ok.

    He gets replaced by a DK. The DK says nothing and death grips a mob while the tank was AFK. He hadn’t even been buffed yet.

    I let him die. A fiery death made more horrible by his screams of HEAL ME HEAL ME. The screaming laughter on vent was again deafening. Another bail.

    Damn, we just want the emblems for the random!

    Another DPS PUG. This time, we got a mage. He greeted us politely and immediately made a mage table. When we started pulling, he held off a few ticks and then started casting. I saw the threat meter as his (very very good) DPS began building threat. He backed off a bit and then continued when his threat was down. He sheeped things without being asked, and when appropriate. We salivated. We also ran 4 heroics with him and had a blast. We even offered to take up a collection to pay for his move to our server with a guild invite as soon as he got there.

    I hate his current guild for making him feel welcome and appreciated. Damn them!

    But to see either of the first two as a “DPS tank” in your proposed world would be a scream. Most of the teeny-boppers that are the main chunk of the DPS population don’t have tanks or healers for very good reasons. If you make it so they can be reasonably expected to play a tanking role – the game would be unplayable. There are enough “Failtanks” in the game already. Please don’t saddle us with more. Party chat would become trade chat. Elephants and rhinos would romp together. Paladins and shaman would hug publicly. *shudders*

    *Politely but firmly takes the idea from the Big Bear Butt and places it on the shelf, then smacks the paw as it reaches for it*


  30. It seems the majority of the individuals who are spouting the mantra that their class niche is more important than any other, are those who are so over geared for the content they are currently running they have COMPLETELY forgotten what it was like to run it at the gear levels it was DESIGNED for.

    The other thing to keep in mind is that frankly the vast majority of us came into Wrath over geared to START WITH. As a result the skills we once had in Crowd Control, Group communication, and Assessment has been trampled to dust beneath the easy, fast paced Zerg.

    What dungeons do people wimp out on? Those that they have to actually pay attention to game mechanics on or can not speed up.

    While I can understand the desire some may have for everyone to go “hybrid” there is a reason some of us have stuck it out with our “pure” classes. I recently was in a five man where I spent the first 10 minutes listening to the Druid, Paladin, Death Knight and Priest argue over who was going to do what role because they all cued up as “dual”.

    If nothing else Spitfires certainly has gotten people talking about the roles they play and the importance of NOT appropriately appreciating each of them.
    .-= Daraia´s last blog ..How to be that DPS EVERYONE wants =-.


  31. Or, as a better solution, Blizzard could stop making raiders run 5 man content in order to get the gear that they need to continue raiding. I think that this is a large part of the problem concerning the “elitist” attitudes that have been popping up. Why should someone dedicated to running 10 and 25 man content be forced to run 5 man instances which they massively outgear in order to continue to get gear for their raids?


  32. I miss the chain trapping goodness of tbc. Shame I was getting half decent at it when wrath came around, but I am happy to see CC used in the new heroics (RAGE AT FLAMEBRINGERS!!)

    I do kinda agree to the Matticus post to an extent though… for different reasons maby. It would be nice to see tanks and heals get a tiny reward, not much like maby a little extra gold from random heroics, just enough to tempt more people into taking on those roles.


  33. Agree with some of what you say, but perhaps wouldnt go quiet as far as changing the whole 3 dps+dedicated tank and healer, but I like the idea of more mobs which you just cant tank safely, more CC required, less predominace of high dps/healing/hp and more on learing the instances and using all the assets of a group rather than just “Holdin, Healin n’ Spamin’ ”

    From a pretty casual player pov, (i.e. plays alot, but does not raid religiously),on the idea that badges stop being usefull soon after to are able to complete 5 man heroics, I think the current pace is not too bad, what you can get with triumphs, really only gears you up to the bottom of what the currently run raids are, and without running raid you are not going to get loads of frosts, which are on a par with current raid content, and without raiding it not like your going to get meny of them anyway. And if you add the un-tankable danger mobs in no matter how good you gear gets through purely badges, you’ll still need the skill to complete the instance, and if you do get the time and oportunity to take part in a raid, your gear although wont be cutting edge, with be acceptable for the current level, and your skill will be what defines your contrabution tot he raid.


  34. I figure the guy was just trying to generate page hits or something, either that or he’s suffering from some massive ego issues.

    My first toon was a warlock that was one of five or so trying to get raid spots in a 10 man guild, I ended up shelving her between Naxx and Ulduar because I figured the world needed healers (my guild sure did). I didn’t start my shaman to get some special rewards (but I’ve never had anyone single me out for an attaboy in a 5 man when I’m in a DPS spec), I did it in order to play. I’m just lucky that I’m a decent healer and I enjoy it.

    I recently got my brother playing and I explained the three roles to him. Healers keep everyone alive, DPS burns stuff to the ground as fast as possiable, and tanks stand in front of the boss saying bad things about the bosses mother. He instantly latched onto the idea of tanking because he sees it as protecting his group (and he figured out that tanks are about as rare as healers and I had the healing thing covered). He even leveled his pally prot so when he got up to 80 where I was he would know his job in and out. He didn’t do it for better chances at loot, or more emblems, he did it because he thought it would be fun and useful.

    As a tank and a healer combo we don’t expect special treatment in a 5 man. We don’t think we deserve more rewards from doing any kind of group work. We don’t look down on the dps in our groups. We do have our demands though, he demands that I keep him alive so he can do his tank thing, I demand that he keep the mobs away from me so I can do my resto thing, and we both demand that the DPS do the best they can to bring as much hurt as they can as fast as they can (I also demand that my wife MD pulls the next pack of mobs when we’re down to the last mob in the current pull but my brother dosen’t know that). The real reward for a tank or a healer, the one that we (or at least I) live for is for someone, at some point during a run, to say “Dang fine job on the heals”, or “Good job picking up that pat we didn’t see coming”.

    Maybe the poster over on Matt’s place is only a fair to middlen healer and he never hears that so he wants some kind of bonus to validate him. Maybe he got spoiled leveling as a healer hearing that (I remember that it was said at the end of nearly every 5 man run when I was leveling the lock up) and now that he hasn’t heard it in a while he wants something else to provide his affirmation. But at least it has provided some good conversation on the subject.


  35. Yaaar – when playing hunter now I feel like a blunt swiss army knife. These days I play druid or priest or shaman or anything that can heal or spot tank O_O because I do get the “you be just meat” feeling sometimes as a straight dps who can’t give out conjured foods or soul stone or even drop totems.
    .-= Greenhunter´s last blog ..Dungeon Finder Gooooo! =-.


  36. Healing an only-barely-geared-enough group in H PoS, I begged for CC on the groups of 6 mobs on the ramp to the tunnel. Did I get it? No, I didn’t even get time to root the mobs myself before the tank was in the middle of them. We had one or two deaths on every pull, and it could have been so easily avoided. I found myself doubting that the rest of the group knew what CC means.


  37. Good thoughts BBB.

    What you are proposing sounds good to me — although I’d be willing to rather see that in a new game that is based on that concept rather than doing a massive WoW overhaul.

    What would suit me the best would be different hybrid roles: tank/dps, dps/heals, dps/cc. And this could be implemented in the current WoW, even. Basically – not only have hybrid classes but make every ROLE a hybrid role.

    Another required change to go along with this would be to make CC once again needed and equally important to keeping tank alive when in instance-approriate gear. CC would remain relevant even when people are overgeared if damage would not break PvE CC. Only difference to the “right” gear level would be that the heals would have more time to DPS and the content would be faster — but CC would be still essential to speed if not for survival anymore.

    Combine this with DPS being responsible for their self-heals (maybe by making self-heals more powerful than healing others) and we are all set for a more interesting way of playing WITHIN the current WoW framework.

    Just my thoughts. And this is because BBB’s post above would kill PUGs — and I’m one of those weirdos that actually like them… Even the ones with asshats – that’s just more giggles and glee.

    Note: That does not include that hunter that needed my Black Heart from ToC 5-man…


  38. I have to say I have neer felt like ‘meat in the room’ on my dps. But then again I only enjoy dps with some utlity, my blood death knight for example has it’s cooldowns ready to heal myself for massive amounts after a devastate, swap to frost and start cooldown tanking, and generally keep myself up even in some rather heavy aoe damage while still doing good to decent damage. My shadowpriest is very similar, I’ve dispersion tanked long enough to get a tank battle ressed and buffed before falling over dead. My druid of course has battle resses and innervates when it’s not tanking (though I do this even when tanking sometimes) I have rooted things after a healler, and when facepulls happened, popped starfall, barksin, ran up to the tank and hurricaned while everything went “YUMMY CRITCHICKEN” I died, but it was all ont he tank, and ready to be picked up by all the tools they have. DPS can be stupid, and be carried through a dungeon…on the flip side I have seen dps carry bad tanks and heallers through the same instances. I saw a hunter who basically end up kiting every other mob doing 6k dps, because the tank died due to being crittable. I’ve seen shamans throw on shields and tank better than some tanks while being crittable. Obviously this is fuelled mostly by gear, but these players know what they’re doing. Smart dps that doesn’t stand in the fire is just as valuable, if not moreso, than tanks and heallers.

    A recent prime example I did was on my druid, we got rotface down to about 12% and our offtank died, I’m a boomkin but I pop bearform, growl at the slime, and start kiting while digging in my bag for my tanky weapon for extra stam and hitting a flask of stoneblood
    I’m certainly no tank in balance spec, and I’m sure my heallers were crying at my health and it’s spikiness, but I was able to kite long enough for dps to kill it.

    Bad dps are a dime a dozen. Bad tanks are a dime a dozen, and bad heallers are a quarter a million. Smart players are rare, valuable, and should be given cookies, and cookies, and cookies for being intelligent, quick reacting, and miracle workers.


  39. While I agree that in general DPS shouldn’t be treated as “just meat in the room”, a lot of times they pretty much bring it on themselves. If all you do is stand in one place, going through your rotation not caring if you pull aggro or die to AoE, then that’s hardly the tank’s or healer’s fault. Of course, I’m not saying all DPS are that way, but it’s true for over 90% of the DPS I encounter in PUGs.

    Surprisingly, these very same people are usually the ones who don’t heal themselves even when they can, and wouldn’t tank/heal if the tank/healer left the run in the middle. And that’s the real problem, not whether or not all classes can do those jobs. Even if everyone could tank, if no one wants to that’s really not helping anything.


  40. I get excited when I have to Fear/Banish something, mainly because I heard about it “growing up” (aka leveling) but then once I got to warlock adulthood (70 for 2 weeks, then 80), I never really did use CC. =/ I miss it without having used it, if that’s possible.

    Voidwalker/Felguard tanking…I’m in! Or, heck, I’m sure Demo locks would get behind Metamorphosis demon-form tanking. Affliction locks are already halfway to healing with Haunt/Siphon Life/Drain Life. Warlocks are nearly set for a BBB WoW future. 🙂


  41. Some good thoughts here.

    It may just be cyclic, or even just me, but I have seen many people shelve their pure Dps characters in favor of a hybrid. I know I have pretty much walked away from my hunters in favor of characters that don’t just feel like meat in the room.

    Chain trapping used to be both common and fun. Last week I trapped something that was gnawing on the healer. The tank started chewing out the mage for using his iceblock on it.

    He either forgot or never knew that hunters could ice trap. Oddly enough, I think thats the last time I ran on any of them.
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