Tanking: Dungeon Two

Deadmines loading screen

“Prior to the First War, the Deadmines were the greatest gold-production center in human lands. It is said the Deadmines’ gold deposits once accounted for a third of Stormwind’s treasure reserves. However…” ~from Wowpedia

Killona and Anesthetica qued up for Deadmines. Unlike our first attempt, there was no instant que for this tank/healer combo. We sat twideling our thumbs for almost seven minutes before getting zoned in.

The three dps were all from different servers, seems to be the norm for LFD. To our dismay though, two of the bosses were already down. Killona’s first thought: What the heck happened to the previous tank and healer? She soon decided that they must have dropped group. Several reasons became obvious as the rest of the run proceeded.

The dps crowd; a warrior, a hunter and a mage. As with their first dungeon attempt, Killona had difficulties with the warrior and hunter pulling aggro from the start of each fight, before she even reached the intended mob group. Are things so off, now that dps don’t understand that the tank needs to hit the group first?

At first, Killona attempted to pick up those mobs that ran past her, straight to the pulling dps. This became a fruitless task. She adopted the attitude: “fine. you pull, you’re on your own, hope you die.” To their benefit though, Anesthetica has a big heart and did’nt let them die. After finishing the main crowd, Killona would double back and pick up what she could. We finished the run with a few more aggravations, but no deaths.

Way back when it was first popular, I had the add-on Recount. Eventually, tired of it, and dumped it. About a month or so back, I installed it again. Mostly for personal referance with the new classes and specs I’m trying out. Last week I came across a couple of old blog posts floating around the internets. lol, I learned again not only how to read Recount, but how to read it from a tank’s perspective. It’s actually quite useful now. Maybe more on that another time.

As expected, Killona can out dps most any dps’er, including those with pets. Also, as expected, she does more damage. Unexpected though, Killona required considerably less healing than some dps. One example was the warrior. Third in dps rank, yet received the vast majority of heals. The mage; no real clue what (s)he was up to. Bringing up the rear I guess. And the hunter. Now, I do know a little bit about hunters, having a level capped PvP BM hunter who does venture into dungeons every so often. So let’s start here.

HUNTERS! Turn your pet’s “growl” ability off in dungeons. Do not send your pet with “charge” into the group ahead of the tank. Come on now hunters, we should all know these two simple things by now.

No, I’m not going into a rant now 🙂 Although, it really isn’t hard to pick up a few basics about playing your class and spec. It’s called: Google.

Okay then. At the end of it all there is a level 3 guild sitting around. Killona and Anesthetica (alts) are co-gm’s. The guild started out as just a place for us to keep all our alts, share materials, extra bank space and what-not. After talking it over with Anesthetica, I’ve decided to attempt recruiting lower level players into the guild in hopes of forming a steady dungeon group. People who can cooperate with each other, work as a team, and hopefully have some fun along the way. Nice people. If we’re ever going to get anywhere with doing dungeons, seems to me a steady guild group has considerably more advantages.

So, that’s about it for now. LOL!  “TIP: Take all things in moderation….”. Yep, I need to keep this in mind. :p

I’m a Tank???

Today was the, I repeat, THE big day for Killona. At level 15, she was ready to try tanking her first dungeon. Her healer friend was level 15 as well, and ready to go!

Killona, the new tank

We decided for both our sakes to specifically choose Ragefire Chasm. Said to be the easiest of dungeons to start learning on. lol, and we were both fresh learners. Please note now: that I’ll be writing from my new tanks’ viewpoint. I’m pretty sure Anesthetica (healer friend), will be posting about her experiences from her viewpoint.

I must apologize for not having any action screenshots this time around. We’ll just move on to the good, bad, and ugly of the Ragefire Chasm dungeon group.

Killona had spent the night before making sure she had everything ready, and was in the best gear possible. Armed with both outside research, and a late night visual reminder run by Aygaren, she was ready to do this.

She greeted her group with a friendly hello. While preparing to ask if there were any questions before the start, someone was already asking if we were going yet. Killona met her first “go-go-go” dps’er. Things kind of went downhill from there.

To name a few: a warlock decided their voidwalker should be pulling the next mob while Killona was taking a brief look at which group was best to pull first. Next, there was the hunter who though it would go quicker if he fired on the mob first. Then there was a rogue who chose to run ahead and sap away, for whatever reason. The only time that worked out to the good was when he actually sapped one of the lower boss types and we were able to clear everything out first. But that was only one time, out of perhaps 20 random saps.

BTW- after the first successful run, some folks wanted to do another run, and another, and….you get the point. We ended up doing a couple of random choices after that, but every-single-time, it was Ragefire Chasm to pop. We, (Anesthetica and I), went through an array of dps’ers.

Now, the self part of this post. That cry for HELP!  Just to help you out though, here’s a screenie of the numbers for all the runs combined. Remember though, recount runs the average totals. Not of these shown are single fights, or even single runs.

clicky to make bigger!

The “Help” part? If there are any experienced tanks who happen to be reading today….

1.)  How do you deal with dps’ers who think they should tank? One of the problems I had was picking up wayward mobs, trying to pull them back to me instead of pounceing on a dps. Mobs were splitting up in several directions.

2.)  Is there something better I could have done from the start to help ensure group cooperation?

3.)  At level 15, I noticed that some of the dps’ers were level 17’s. They easily pulled aggro off of me. My toolbox atm isn’t much, though I did try to utilize every bit of it attempting to keep the mobs on me. I failed in this aspect, holding aggro, and it bothers me. lol, only once was I able to taunt a mob back off of one of them!

4.) We had dps’ers from many different realms, none from our own. Would it have been better to attempt a trade chat call from our own server?

Okay, I’m sure I could go on second guessing myself over everything, but I’ll let your eyes rest for now. 🙂  I do have one overall great thing to mention though. For being brand new to healing, Anesthetica did one hell-of-a-good job! In spite of the many chaotic moments, she always had my back and managed to keep the wayward group alive as well. I really hope we can continue working/learning together.

So there you have it. I hope you didn’t feel like I was just ranting or QQ’ing. It wasn’t my intention at all. Feel free to comment away about anything. 😀

Got Tank?

Another Tuesday rolls in, and if you haven’t read the fine print, it’s a 10 hour maintenance call instead of the usual 8. Next Tuesday, the 28th., is the schedualed 5.0.something-or-another patch. I hope you’re at least taking a peek at your new and revised talent choices, coming to your neighborhood soon. 🙂

While wandering through MMO Champion this morning, I took some time to watch a fair number of videos about Mists. Really interesting and exciting stuffs coming our way. I saw one 5-man dungeon fight that got me to thinking over an area of the game I’ve pretty much neglected for uhmteen different reasons.

Most of you know that Aygaren wasn’t only my first real Horde character to play out to level cap, but also my first non-ranged caster. I love Ay to the end. He accomplished many different goals for myself as a player. He gave me the new ability to play a melee class to some success.

Where he failed though, (actually me, not him), was tanking dungeons. He just never got into it. It’s a thorn in my side, constantly reminding me of things I meant (want) to do, just never actually did. Ever since some time back in Vanilla, I’ve wanted to raise a raiding character. Now here we are on the verge of Mists, and it’s still not done. :s

That little dream though never died. With good intentions, I keep pushing my own self to do better. Back on another server (pvp), I did manage to get a BM hunter through battlegrounds, world pvp, and enter early arenas. Kind of ended at that point though. His 2’s record was a dreary 2 / 12. And one of those wins was a default no-show from the other team. lol  I guess they were afk at the moment. Anyway, my pvp adventures went fairly well.

Khrox, pvp BM hunter

The hunter did some dungeons in his pvp gear, to some success, albeit minor. So when I started this Horde crew, that PvE dungeon thorn-in-my-side started acting up again. I still have a distaste for pugging, the LFD tool and such. It’s probably been one of the main reasons Aygaren never got into tanking for a group. I can just imagine all the trash talk he’d receive for being so “noob-ish” at this point in the game.

Killona at level 14

Enter Killona. A fresh Blood Elf Paladin, now Protection specced. At the moment she is slightly over level 15, and of dungeon age. There may be a different outcome this time around. An internet/game friend has graciously made room in her stable of alts for a new healing priest, and we’re going to learn how to dungeon well as a tank/healer combo. At the least, we should’nt have to be concerned over long que times, lol.

So, perhaps I’ll finally learn to tank, and she’ll learn about healing dungeon groups. Sounds like a win/win deal to me! Anyway, more about Killona and her adventures as they come about.

Anyways, I figure I got until the 28th. to at least get the basics of tanking down before the talent changes hit. If you’ve got any hints or tips for a beginning noob-ish tank, or an aspiring healing priest, feel free to comment away!  LOL! I feel like Dumass. (if you’ve ever leveled through Silverpine to the opening of Hillsbrad, you’ll know whom I speak of !)  ” HI ! HALP! “