Piglet's guide to Tanking T2s and T3s
The purpose of this guide is to provide all the information you always wanted to know about tier 2 and 3 bosses and that you never dared asking. It isn't aimed for inexperienced players. Rather, I'd appreciate if a few "experienced" tanks would read this guide and change their way to tank afterwards. This guide should also be very useful for rising tanks. To be more precise, this guide will contain:
- Miscellaneous tips to help developing a good tanking sense
- Precise class information to help both defenders and paladins
- Boss by boss guides to tank at maximum efficiency
- Some arrogance from my part
I don't expect people to blindly agree with every statements in this guide. However, I expect people to carefully read the information and question themselves. I notice more and more stupid mistakes from old tanks and also a lack of information from the newcomers. As a bored man, I can't simply look at these problems while the server is down and not write a guide.
For a better understanding, I'll simply write a list of tips. I'll regularly edit this section to provide more tips or clarify some information, if needed.
- Make sure that you swap between your main shield and Spell Guard for UF, HP and any other debuff you might consider particularly dangerous.
- If your DE is higher than 2 or that you don't start your DE right after a new set of UF and HP, swap to SG for the whole duration of the skill. You can't swap equipment at the middle of DE.
- Always tank with the character spells tab open and read the description of the debuffs. This'll provide you crucial information about the boss that you need in order to have a full understanding. However, this isn't a reason to completely ignore your combat statistics. I suggest to look at it every once in a while to have an idea of your stats. You need to check your armor, absorb and mr. You might also want to take a look at your damage and evasion, but this is reflected in the logs.
- As a paladin, you need to know that there is a delay of 30 seconds (even for BoF) after using BotP. For example, if your absorb gets decimated by the boss' UF, you might want to keep a constant BoF.
- Use potions if necessary and only if necessary. There is no reason to overcap your resistances. Also, never neglect using other potions at the middle of the fight. It doesn't only help for entry.
- Even if you're busy watching a few timers, you should still keep a look out of the box. By that, I mean that you have to try to look at problems coming. For example, if you notice one priest has almost no mana left and that ignite is already used, you might want to point it out to the whole group or help out directly. NOTE: Not only the tank can do that.
- As a tank, you should also have the guts to point out when someone is doing something dumb, unneeded or dangerous. For example, if a priest walks 1d of hope to regen, you can slap him hard if there is nobody down there to protect. A more common mistake is the chanter forgetting to SR on some bosses.
- Use your skills. It's very easy to forget to use a skill like Shield Slam or Virtuous. However, they can be significant for a run.
- You can time Shield Slam to be in effect at the same time as Taunt fades. That way, you'll get the precious agro from Taunt.
- More to come...
The actual tanking
Barakhorn the Hopeslayer
You need around 170 DR to cap both UF and HP on this boss. For a defender, I suggest aiming for that resistance with both sg and MoP on. Don't be an idiot, if there is no priest with that roombuff, make the proper adjustments. For a paladin, I suggest aiming for 20-30 below that digit, but not much more. It's important to keep the UF relatively low. As a general note, as a paladin, try to aim for 30% disease on bosses. I mean 30% disease before the cut in halve.
As for the entry, it's the same for both classes. Charge in with SG on and don't swap until the two pets are dead. After that, do the usual swapping every 30 seconds and use your skills. Agro is rarely an issue on hope since his defense isn't that high.
Note: There are a few reasons behind entering with SG. The main argument to go in with your normal shield is that it's possible to go in without SG and cap most debuffs. However, by doing that, you'll clearly "overcap" the debuffs once they get recasted. Meaning that some of your DR equipment would be pretty useless. To avoid overcapping, you can swap some equipment after MoP and condemn are on, but I dislike this personally. The damage you save with your extra evasion is roughly equivalent to the damage you save from the pets casts. Moreover, SG on entry protects you from a too nasty DC (ice spell that your potions do not protect you from). I remind you that this debuff lasts pretty long when casted by a mob. Also, 15 resistance can make a much bigger difference than what you might expect.
Calick'Gon of the Earth
The equipment needed for this boss is pretty simple. Just pump armor, absorb and hp as much as you can. Basically, wear the same equipment as you use to tank normal t1 bosses. You don't even need to swap for this boss.
The entry on Calick has two particularities. First one is that the boss isn't a natural ennemy. He won't attack you on entry. That gives you the time to cast USoF before attacking. The other particularity is that calick has two pets with impressive debuffs. If you're a kind hearted tank, you don't want your beloved damagers to get debuffed. Try to keep agro on all mobs. People usually start by killing the pristine servant then the enigmatic one and finally move on to the boss. Act accordingly.
An important note is that TU will greatly affect your combat statistics. Defenders without EGB or war training will have issues with agro. Make sure to take your time. As for paladins, the -absorb from that same spell will hurt you. If you get pounded for too much (I'll leave the definition of "too much" to your own subjectivity), I suggest to keep BoF constantly on. Also make sure that BotP is ready for despo. It'll proove to be extremely useful.
Ralothaxxias the Dracolich
Draco, when it comes to equipment, is like an upgraded version of hope. The tanking strategy is the same as hope, but you need more resistance. You need around 210 DR to cap UF and HP. Don't panic, using potions to reach that much isn't cheating. You'll need both DDT and DV. I'm aware that most of you still can't reach that much DR. Don't worry, it doesn't mean that you can't tank this boss. Capping debuffs isn't a must, it just helps. If you're smart enough not to wear a ring of thievery and focus solely on DR, you can get some pretty high resistances. Don't forget to consider CM leggings. They had 5% more resistance than BG greaves. This is the last time I'll repeat that, try to aim for 20-30% less DR on a paladin. Your disease may vary much more on this boss than on hope. The reason is because of ES (Eviscerate Soul). This spell has the side effect to debuff your DR.
The entry can be a bit tricky. Make sure that only 1 wyrm is with draco. If not, you can drag two north to kill them then come back. Your roombuffers and pet users should stay 1n of the boss while you drag it there. I suggest entering with SG, swapping to your shield as soon as you are debuffed then wait until the wyrm is dead before swapping back to SG (and using DE). On a paladin, feel free to use BotP on entry.
This boss is usually the perfect stress reliever if your chanter doesn't do his job correctly. You might get spammed by 5k dmg ES if you don't have SR. As soon as you realize that you're missing SR, yell on the group channel until you receive the buff. Feel free to rant as much as you want once you die or that the boss is killed to release all your stress.
You'll notice a lot of unpredictability with this boss since he has two procs that make your own DR vary; broken chains and ES. Basically, get as much DR as you can for this boss (this apply to both classes).
For entry, I suggest you to ask a priest to go in before the group to condemn the boss. It'll greatly help. If you wonder why you die so fast on this boss, take a close look at the spell infos, your hp and the proc Animus Vorus. I won't add more. The basic strategy is the same as any DR boss.
Vesamau the Sleepless
Ves is one of the three bosses ingame that is the harder to tank. The main reason is because the agro is extremely hard to hold. For this reason, it's important not to overcap resistance on it. One important thing is to keep AECP on while you tank it. The +2 BM will greatly help your damage output. You need, if I remember correctly, around 160-180 DR to cap the debuffs.
There are a few things you can do to increase your relative agro on ves. As a defender, you can't do much to improve your own agro (except using potions, but I'm sure that you dislike this idea). However, you still have a great tool to reduce the agro of others. You can try to time your Shield Slam for when your enrage gets debuffed. I suggest to keep GttG for when you die though, if it happens. As for paladins, you can do so much to improve your agro. You have access to a great skill called WttW. If you don't want to get it, you can still ress for extra agro.
Guardian of Sorrows
Clearly a misunderstood boss. I hope that this guide will clear some misunderstanding. As much as it is true that this boss has a relatively weak UF and HP, you must stay wary of his hidden dot. It's an ice spell that can do between 50 and 9k+ damage per dot and nobody can see it except the tank in the spell info tab. With the prismal ability of the boss (a random 50sp boost outside of despo and 100 during) this ability can be deadly. Let's also not forget the stunresistance debuff. You can get bashed for 10+ seconds.
I suggest you to tank this boss with the higher possible ice resistance. Keep your SG on at all time. Don't neglect using Frozen Liquors, particularly for despo. Make sure that your spell tab is on. Try to warn your priests if the dot damage is high.
The entry is definetly child play for some players. By that, I mean that your group will probably act like childs and do stupid things like kick GoS even if you didn't touch it yet. But, let's pretend that they'll listen carefully for your run. Don't attack GoS as soon as you enter his room. Wait till roombuffs are up and that you killed the first two spawns of the pets. After that, you can attack the boss and do your usual job.
Note: The goal of keeping SG on the whole run isn't to reduce the overall damage input from the boss (even if it might). It is to stabilize the damage input so your healers aren't surprised by a sudden damage burst.
Nothing much to say about this boss. Just make sure that you hold agro. If you're a paladin, don't cast your spells at random moments. Take a look at the spell infos and you'll understand.
So many things are done wrong on this boss. First of all, this isn't a DR boss. Wear the same equipment as for Calick (roughly). Make sure that your absorb is capped. You can swap your SBR away for Ring of Blood if you need extra absorb. As for potions, anything adding to your hp would be welcome.
There is a certain concept of time limit with this boss if your agro output isn't high enough. This guide is supposed to only help tanking and not group leading, but I still have to say that you have two choices when it comes to forming the group. First one is to bring a group as big as you can with a lot of damage output to kill the boss as fast as possible. For a defender, this is the only way to succeed. The other possibility is to have the tank generate enough agro over time to stop people from stealing. This strategy requires a few points in WttW and RFoA. Basically, you go in with just enough people to kill pets in time and go for a smooth run instead of a kamikaze run.
A few things that you need to pay attention to, as a tank, is the entry and zerk. Your goal is to make entry as smooth as possible. Feel free to use a CMT before entering. Wait before the first Terminax Overpower before using your active skills. You'll notice that the damage output of Terminax isn't that high. The other difficulty I mentioned is zerk. If you aren't prepared, it can kill you easily. Well, even if you're prepared, it can also kill you easily. I suggest paladins to save BotP for this moment and defenders to save DS. Feel free to use a few health items like vampire hearts. Luck is also a pretty important factor when it comes to zerk.
Not exactly a DR boss. Just charge in with the most damage equipment you can find. The defense of this boss is similar to Ves'. Agro will probably be an issue for you. Make sure that you take your time. Other than that, there really is nothing you should be scared of.
The Shadow Keeper
The strategy for this boss would be a pain to explain. Start by killing Terminax and I'll write it down.