Sunday, January 4

Vigilance for Dum-Dums (Like Me)

Since taking up tanking (I know the picture is dps gear... shaddup), I've become obsessed with threat. Thus... I love Vigilance.

Using it properly is another matter. So here's some short thoughts based on experiences so far.

Vigilance does three things, and to me, it's a required tanking tool:

1. It reduces the target's damage by 3%. May not seem like much, but it helps out on those AoE meelee guys like DKs and Pallys.

2. It transfers 10% of the person's threat to you. Again with the DKs. They AoE to the point where you can't even see anything. Well, having 10% of that, plus Deep Wounds, Thunderclap, Damage Shield, and Shockwave all working at the same time is gonna generate bunches of threat on multiple mobs at once. Win.

3. Refreshes the cooldown of Taunt everytime your friend is hit. So, even if they are pulling aggro off you, you can pull the mob right back. Over and over and over... until they get the picture.

Vigilance does not go on your healer. It might go on your healer, but it's unlikely the best place... though it is the most tempting place. Most of the time, at least in Wrath 5-mans, the healer isn't going to out threat a Warrior tank. The threat they generate isn't enough to transfer well. And they rarely get hit.

Vigilance works best when it's on a party member who tends to get hit a lot and tends to generate piles of threat. So your first choice is gonna be your top melee DPSer. The benefits include getting a nice chunk of their threat, while increasing that fine line between good dps and dead dps by 10%, lowering thier damage, AND refreshing Taunt regularly so that if the healer DOES pull aggro, you aren't left hanging with a cooldown (macro Intervene>Taunt>Shield Slam>Devestate).

If you're like me, you PuG a lot (at least in partial PuGs, anyhow). So when you have macho-boy thinking he's all bad cause he can pull aggro off the tank, slap this on him. It might hurt is ego a bit, but life's not perfect. It's not an ideal solution, but as a quick fix it works. (Sneak it in during a fight. Most of the time they'll never notice.)

As a second choice, I'd pick a Lock or a Hunter with high dps. I haven't tried it, but if it'll work, sticking it on a pet or minion that keeps pulling aggro would be great, too. (Not sure if this works, but will try to confirm.) With thier big dps potential though, I go for the DK, Pally, or Hunter first.

So get your protective eye on someone. It's a great ability, easy to take when you spec, and it can make your life as a punching bag MUCH easier!



  1. Great tips there Friday, I know I'm guilty of under utilising ye olde Vigilance, but I expect to be making more and better use of this handy buff in the future!

  2. Interesting - I know nothing about the warrior class or their abilities (other than absolutely bare-bones knowledge, anyway). I play a holy priest and I've been itching to play a tanking class, to see how it is on the other side. I was worried about trying a warrior for lack of viable AoE tanking (again, this is an assumption based on what little I know) This post helps me think that maybe I could play a warrior after all. (There's just too many pallys running around) :)

  3. Don't forget AoE DPS types like us Arms/Fury players. Bladestorm and sweeping strikes make for huge damage, and as a result, a nice little threat bonus just for you! ^_^

  4. I've never tried playing a tanking class, it always seemed so complicated. I'm definitely more of a "point and shoot" player.

  5. @brack

    TY! And yah, I almost always forget about it. Right up until the Omen warning sound starts going off. :D

    After looking over the report thingies at the end though, it adds a ton and makes it almost impossible for the person you're watching to pull anything off you... even if they're being a doofus and switching targets rapidly or hitting stuffs out of order. Blizz did a good thing with this one.

    Thanks for stopping in! And looking forward to reading more about your tanking adventures!


  6. @Anea

    In Burning Crusade twas a valid concern. Blizz stacked those dungeons w/ large, difficult to control mob groups. Shatter Hells is a horrible tanking experience for a Warrior and Tempest Keep? Still have nightmares. Gave up tanking after that.

    It's fixed, though. :)

    Warriors can match a Pally or DK for area threat. They single/boss tank as well as a bear (maybe better, but hopefully bear friends will get some fixes soon). They shrug off or flat out avoid damage. And no class is tougher. Healers love Warrior tanks. :)

    That said...

    Warrior tanking is a bit more involved. Blizz has made all the Warrior classes more fun to play, but there's more work involved than with some other tank classes. Abilities are very situational. Less rotation, more prioritizing which ability to use in a given situation. No one button to do it all, sorta thang.

    A Very Good Protection Warrior is simply amazing to watch in action. The balance between threat and mitigation, when done right, is like a ballet. It's awesome.

    Nice thing is, you can roll a Warrior and get a light feel for tanking with one as early as VC. Now that Thunderclap has unlimited targets early tanking is easier. I'm leveling a new Prot Warrior now, just for fun. lol

    Thanks for stopping in and let me know if ya give it a try!


  7. @Pix

    How embarrassing. Considering 90% of playtime in WoW over the years has been as an Arms Warrior, you'd think it'd throw in a mention. gah!

    But yah, actually an Arms or Fury Warrior is possibly the BEST target of Vigilance!

    Since I'm tanking most of the time now, I can say with a some degree of confidence that if I have to choose between two plate wearers, I'll take another Warrior. The over all effect of having an Arms Warrior in the party is just too yummy. :)


  8. @Indigo

    Not so much complicated... more... situational. It definitely takes some of that button-finger-reflex-memory.

    I think that's what makes tanking interesting to me now. That's opposed to TBC where it was all about using a specific rotation, over and over and over... Probably also why I spent so much time in PvP as an Arms Warrior during BC.

    A Prot Warrior CAN plan out each pull, tank with cc, mark carefully, follow a rotation, etc. and get the job done very well and efficiently.

    I've always been more inclined to shoot from the hip. :) I like it chaotic, and fast, and unpredictable. Not good traits in a tank (I'm trying to be a better planner, I promise), but it's a lot more fun. What I guess I'm realizing is that Prot Warriors have all the tools to make people like me better tanks. You don't have to use 'em, but they are there if you need 'em.

    It's usually the point-and-shoot players that save my big round butt. I appreciate Holy Priests, and I've learned to love whack-a-mole Holy Pallys. I think that Blizz has done a great job (much better job?) of accommodating and making more fun, several different styles of play.

    And here I am yammering like I know what I'm talking about. lol

    Thanks for stopping in :D


  9. As a BM hunter, my pet tends to draw more threat than I do, somehow, even if he has Growl off and Prowl on-- maybe it's my feigning death? =P So Vigilance on him might actually not be a bad idea!

  10. @Pike

    I still haven't tried it on a pet, but it's on my list. No reason it shouldn't work. :)

    Other than an over-geared, over-zelous dps'er occasionally, I never loose threat now... except to a Hunter pet! When it happens it's always on multi-fight and it ping pongs. Pet pulls, I pull back, pet pulls, I pull back, etc. Don't have to taunt 'em off, it stays right on the line, but I can see when I get into heroics where it would be a problem if the tank's attention is needed elsewhere. Vigi would fix that right up.

    Course training the healer to hot up and spot heal the pet helps, too. :)

    Thanks for stopping in!


  11. I'll add to that...

    I am in no way opposed to a hunter's pet off tanking a mob, while the others are dealt with! In fact, as far as "cc" goes, I'd prefer it if the healer can pull it off.

    cc in Wrath dungeons just doesn't work like it did in BC dungeons. At least from what I've seen so far. The mobs are laid out differently, the pulls are different. And it's easy to tank everything. I think off tanking, by BM Hunter pets, VWs, or another plate wearer, or even a Rogue, is going to become way more common form of controlling mobs. FWIW