I put this under a hunter header but it really fits anywhere. Each class has a way to manage threat and you need to use it every chance you get.
I still do a lot of dungeons even if I have not needed frost badges in forever and I see a large variety of tanks come in and out. All of them have their own style and own personal ability. Not to mention the in game abilities and classes. There are many different combination so there is not single way to manage your threat. You have to adjust to your surroundings.
I often tell a new tank not to worry about me. If I pull threat from you it is because I want it. I know how to handle my threat and I do pretty damn well at it. If I am pulling threat when I do not want to then we have an issue with a tank. If the tank is doing what he is supposed to be doing I will never pull threat.
How do I manage this?
You, as DPS, control your very own DPS. You are in more control of what you do then everyone else. A healer will heal when needed. No need for them to control what they do. A tank has to deal with outside aggro from everyone, even healing aggro can pull and add the tank has not tagged yet. Either one can not stop doing what they do to help. If a healer stops healing people die. If a tank stops tanking you are going to get better your teeth fed to you because he is not distracting big mr bad guy.
A DPS can stop doing DPS and nothing bad will happen. If you stop DPS the tank is still tanking. If you stop DPS the healer is still healing. You stopping hurts no one. It can help however.
I am happy you can pull 8K on a single target with no buffs in a heroic. It is fun to do, I laugh every time I break 8K with no buffs in a heroic. The thing is, who gives a flying fuck if you can do 8K if by doing it you are pulling the mob off the tank.
There are many ways you can gauge the tanks abilities which in turn will let you know how much DPS you can safely put out. Remember, it is not about how much DPS you can do it is about how much DPS you can safely do.
- You have it, use it. I never, repeat, never go into a pull without it if I can help it. I do not care of the tank has 60K health in all ICC 25 HM gear. It is there for a reason. Use it. You are a hunter, if you are even 1/2 way decent you can pull off a tank in 3 seconds flat if you happen to get crits on your opening shots. If you have over 70% crit like I do that will happen quite often.
2) Feign Death
- You have it, use it. Do not wait until the pack is coming for you either. The second you get close to pulling the pack use it. If you let it start coming for you and then use it you might create a very bad situation. If the tank is not on the ball and you let it get to close to you, it might move to the healer instead of back to the tank and then the wipe is your fault.
3) Pulling the Mob
- If a mob is in Kill Shot range or will shortly be in Kill Shot range and I see myself coming close I pull the mob anyway knowing it will be dead WAY before it gets to me. That is why I tell tanks that if I pull aggro do not worry about it. This is not something you should do when you are still learning however and surely not if you are not hit capped yet. Nice to say, no worries, I'll hit it with a KS if you end up missing because you are not hit capped.
4) Your Healer > Your DPS
- If you are constantly high on threat and coming close to pulling that means your healer will have to start paying a lot of attention to you. If the healer is paying attention to you that is not needed mistakes can happen. Your threat, even if you do control it, can cause problems for others if you keep getting close. Never get close.
- We all know we pull threat at 130%. That does not mean that you should start worrying about it when you get to 110%. Never even get to 100%. I set my meter to warn me at 80%. That gives me the time I need to settle a big shot I want that might be coming off cooldown and then FD or MD. I've seen myself go from 80% to 120% in just one Chimera shot that happened to crit with the auto shot attached and maybe a wild quiver shot as well at the same time all critting. Crit is a wild card. Give yourself lots of threat room to work with.
6) Going All Out
- Pay attention to how things are going in the early pulls. You should be MDing, but even at that you will climb steady up the threat meter. If you are never getting close to pulling after the initial MD then feel free to unleash all you have on a boss fight. If you see that you are close to grabbing aggro just before trash dies you know that you can not go all out on the boss.
7) Learn How To Tank
- I am not saying to go out and level a tank. I am saying at least take a few minutes to know how things work. If you look around you will see all thanks have a way to deal with AoE pulls. All of them are visual and you can see it easily from the back where we shoot. If you do not see the tank do their AoE do not attack with AoE. Sounds simple right? Trust me, as a tank too I can tell you 90% of DPS do not do that. If you have MD off cooldown, feel free to MD and Volley. That helps the tank.
Remember, as hunters we are in the position where we can control all aspects of agrro with even a half way decent tank. So use those abilities and use your head. Don't worry about your DPS if you have to slow up some because I am sure in the end they would rather you do 6K DPS the entire fight then 8K DPS for a few seconds and need to keep reviving you. Dead people have 0 DPS.