DK Tanks

August 21, 2009

I wanted to go a bit off the topic of my auction house exploits today and talk about 2 classes that I play and my views from both perspectives of those classes.

I am going to talk about the state of affairs of DK tanks. My main spec is a blood tank spec with pretty much the cookie cutter build of the spec. I do a ton of self healing and use my cooldowns in a manner to support staying alive and taking the least amount of damage that I possibly can. With that said DK tanks are becoming fast the last chosen tank for anything out there.

DK’s are taking a large chunk of damage then their tanking counter parts. Cooldowns have been nerfed so that they are more inline with other classes, which is a good thing in my opinion, yet they are some of the weaker cooldowns of the tanking cooldowns now.  Hit points for DK’s are the lowest of all the tanking classes when given equal gear. DK’s have to spec for blood if they want any hope of getting back some of the lost hp from the nerf and even then they still lost a good 2-3k hp raid buffed minimum.  DK armor is now pretty much equal to all shield bearing classes.  Combining all the nerfs together it seems Blizzard went a bit overboard.  I don’t know what this will have as an effect to the long term view of the class for tanking as a whole, but it can’t be good.  I do know letting DK tanks be overpowered for 7 months was good for the view of the class as a whole perception wise when at the beginning of WOTLK DK’s were seen as horrible as tanks and many groups refused to let DK’s even tank due to the huge spikeyness of their damage intake in heroics. I have to say we are back to that again coming from the perception of a tank and as of a healer.

I have spent the last week tanking on my DK and healing DK tanks on my druid.  My DK is in a mix of Ulduar level gear with a touch of Naxx 25 man gear for tanking. My druid is mostly in Ulduar/10 man toc gear currently.  My health while tanking even heroics on my DK bounces up and down like a yoyo lately.  There is no rhyme or reason for it other then I do not have a block mechanism like all the other tank classes. Even without block I also am hit harder then my tanking counterparts due to no demoralizing shout type effect.  It makes me almost want to go back to just dpsing on my DK for heroics and finding another tank.

Healing DK’s on my druid normally involves spending lots more mana keeping them up compared to the other tanks I have run with. Non DK tanks in similar gear to my DK I can keep up with just a rejuv and an occasional wildgrowth when the group takes some damage, but overall it allows me to focus on the group as a whole. DK tanks on the other hand have started to require rejuv, full stack of lifebloom, wildgrowth when group takes damage and the occasional nourish/swiftmend when they take a huge spike.  Honestly I hate healing DK tanks in heroics…..I would expect this from a raid level boss but really heroic trash?  I don’t mind actually having to pay attention to a fight but does it have to be this big of a difference.

Of course DK’s used to take big hits fairly well, but right after patch I was seeing large chunks of my health just drop.  Of course it could be the combination of bosses are hitting slightly harder (less armor, about 8% more damage intake) and my health pool is smaller (3k smaller!).

Just reading the boards though it seems the doom and gloom of DKs tanks being a distant memory is just people blowing smoke to convince blizzard to fix the problems.  Overall I think some slight tweeks are in order to move us back to not being mana spounges again, but not make us overpowered as we previously were.