So, there I was. I’d queued my Paladin as Damage. I don’t queue for “Tank or Damage” since it’s absurd. The Tank role is so rare, and the Damage role so common, “Tank or Damage” means “Tank.” Actually, two stories of my instance runs last night, both I’d queued as Damage, both I’d waited the requisite 15 minutes for.
First instance was Violet Hold. Death Knight tanking. It went fine. There were no problems. Each portal handily cleared. There were no issues. We were actually talking. So we get the boss that transforms into water elementals. Eichon or something like that? I’ve encounted him a couple of times before. You just burn him down when he’s up. That’s how I’ve always seen it done. It took a little longer this time. I was thrown back a few times. But in the end the boss was dead. We’re looting. The Death Knight tank says “That’s what the crystals are for.” Then he drops group. … “What crystals?” “Where’s our tank?”
Huh? We just downed the boss. Nobody died. The next portal opens up. What the hell did the tank just do? Drop group in a fit of pique? He got all huffy because we confused him and things didn’t go like he thinks they should have so he craps on the group and bails. Mid-event? (The Violet Hold is one protracted event. It starts and continues until you finish.) So the Moonkin does his tank imitation. (Very well too.) I switch to Prot and don my gear. (But I don’t remember RF as I rush to the mob group.) Then, wonder of wonders, a 40k health Warrior joins. Back to ret, we finish the instance without a hitch, burning down the rest of the place.
Second instance run. I zone into Utgard Pinnacle. Another Warrior tank. Okay. He’s got the spiffy Tier 9 shoulders. (Just like I have now for my own tanking set.) And the Lordaeron shield that drops in Culling of Stratholme. Some clunky mace. But, hey, he’s got those shoulders, and that shield. He must be competent.
Uh no. “Forgive me, but I’m new to this.” That’s the tank. … Okay, I’m fine with that. At least your trying. You’re putting some nice epics to use. UP is one of the “training” tanking instances. Then the healer notes “You’re not def capped. 500 def?”
Say what? I inspect him myself. Def helm. Def shoulders. Def everything. Wait. A slow DPS mace? … I could be helpful and point out they’ve got a nice tanking axe available at the tournament for a mere 25 champions seals. But then I figure that would just insult him, since he’s obviously been around, and has been to the tournament to get his shoulders. SURELY he knows he can get a tanking weapon there too. I didn’t catch his enchants, but he’d gemmed entirely for stamina. Blue stam gems all around. Except he only had 25k health. … Huh? He’s got Tier 9 shoulders. He’s got the Lordaeron shield. (And, honestly, my Pally’s only got about that health too at the moment, in those same shoulders and the crafted shield.) But he takes damage like greeks take shots. Ah, that would be his lack of Defense. The healer has a heck of a time and bails after the first boss is dead. (I don’t recall a lot, if any, deaths.) We wait a bit and another healer joins us. Two fights in he says, in party chat, “Now I know why the first healer left.” But, bless his heart, we clear two more bosses. Then he says “I’ve got to go.” and he drops group. So we wait for our 3rd healer. With him in tow we complete the instance by slaying Ymiron. And the Red Sword of Courage fails to drop. The Warrior’s disappointed and the group disbands.
Here’s what’s disappointing: YOU FAILED TO COME TO A HEROIC WITH THE PROPER KIT. C’mon. We all know tanks need to be Def capped for the serious stuff. Heroics are the serious stuff. For Pallies it’s 535 for Heroics, 540 for Raids. I think it’s the same for Warriors. He shows up with 500 Def. And that says to us “You will carry me through this so I can get my loot. I’m not really interested in your opinion of my gear, you elitist jerk.” When I get a new piece of gear, particularly a “keeper” like the Deadly Gladiator or Tier 9 stuff, I drop some serious cash in the AH and do the best I can by it. If I’ve got some blue gems, so be it, BUT AT LEAST I’M DEF CAPPED. (And on my Ret gear I’m hit capped, and then some.)
Now I think with some skill he could have pulled it off. (Edit – To be fair, he did. We completed the instance, all bosses down. The healers were unhappy with him. ) But his warbringer charges were in short supply. He must not have had the thunderclap talent. He did shockwave a lot. But me and the Death Knight were pulling aggro off him. (Couldn’t happen to better plated guys though.) Skill goes a long way. BUT AT LEAST COME AS PREPARED AS YOU CAN BE! If you don’t have the cash, run some dailies, farm some mats, go Arms and run more instances. But don’t waste our time coming half prepared.