Thursday, November 3, 2011

The Accidental Tank + A Funny Flashback

A few weeks ago a guild mate who is extremely well geared asked me if I would be willing to tank a normal for him.  Admittedly I was wondering why he would want to run a normal but I figured, what the hell, maybe he just wanted a really fast run for enchanting materials.  It is not unheard of.

Anyone who reads my babble here knows I hate tanking heroics.  Mostly because DPS suck and I hate dealing with them.  So I would not willingly queue up for a heroic.  A normal however is a different story.  I was tanking and my guild mate was a paladin healer that has the skills to probably solo heal a few of the current raid bosses.  Yes, he is really that good.

We land in GB.  To make a long story short, we down the first boss, just me and him up because all three DPS get hit by the charge and get themselves killed.  That is when I notice this is heroic and not normal, by the loot drop.  Oh well, I am here, I will finish it. 

Second boss goes better. 

Third boss all the DPS dies by the time the dragon comes out. 

Just me and the healer together get the boss to around 10% when we get unlucky and the fire thing spawns right behind him and he does not notice it fast enough and he is too far for my charge to get to it so he dies.  Each time it had targeted him I just charged and mowed it down, each time it targeted me, he just healed me through it.  We could have two manned it if it where not for that.

He says he has to leave so we get another healer.  I think for a moment looking at the horrible DPS we have there and consider dropping myself but decide I will give it a try again.  The new healer asks if we can skip the third boss, so we do. 

We get to the last boss.  We don't down it.  One DPS never gets in the eye, the other two DPS never switch to adds.  You see why I hate tanking randoms now?  I hate the DPS with a passion.  It feels like 90% of them are horrible and a large portion of the 90% that are horrible are also stupid.

After we wiped, one DPS leaves and we get another.  I am sort of upset because the one DPS that left was doing the most DPS.  9K.  Now I was left with 6K and 7K.  6K and 7K with the 15% buff?  You have to be kidding me right?  These two people should not even be in a heroic.  Never the less GB. 

I am tempted to drop group myself.  Hell, I did not want to do a heroic anyway and these DPS are the reason I did not want to do a heroic.  I decide to stick it out for one more try anyway.  We have a raid in 20 minutes, so I'll at least stay until raid time. 

The new DPS is a DK, says he knows the fight, we head at it, we destroy him.  Thank you Mr. DK and your 25K DPS.  I would have been happy with someone that could do over 10K but I am ecstatic to have someone do over 20K.  Good DPS makes everything easier.  Hence the reason I say it is the most important role in the game.

A little later that day I notice the random baggie in my bag.  I did not random alone, why is the baggie even there?  I won't complain.  Free stuff is always good stuff.  I open it and it has a pet that I needed on my main.  Woohoo.  Now that is luck.  Getting a baggie when I should not have and then getting a pet and that pet being one that I needed.  Seems that I got rewarded well for sticking it out.  The DK was reward enough for me doing it in my option.  But I am not going to complain about free stuff I wasn't even expecting.

I personally think I would tank more if they gave me that DK every run instead of a baggie every run.  If they could design the game to give me three DPS like that DK I would tank every day all day long.  I don't need gold, potions, gems, and pets to make me run, I need good DPS to make me run.

So last night two of the DPS in guild where looking for a tank or a healer to queue up so they could get a quicker queue time.  I decided being I have been enjoying my bear a lot lately and I know they are both 15K-20K+ DPS with good CC that I will do it.  Even if the 3rd DPS is horrible, they would not really be needed being we were going to do a normal heroic and not a Zul heroic.

We land in deadmines, my first time there on my bear.  Well, not actually, for my first time there we have to take a trip back in time to when my bear was just a cub.

~the air begins to fill with mist as music begins to signal we are entering... the flashback zone~

The first dungeon I ever tanked on my druid was the weekend LFD came out and it was the deadmines.  Not the one we have now, the old one.  I've never tanked the new one on my druid but even if it is different it reminded me of my first time there, my first time tanking on my druid.

The run was already in progress just before the ship when I got there.  I come in to people fighting all over the place.  I help finish the mobs off and revive the dead.  The run is filled with rude people and stupid people.  You know the type, your standard pug people.

A lot of stuff happened that run, but that run in my mind will always be remembered for one thing.  The healer.  There was the requisite bad DPS every run needs, this one had all three being bad.  A hunter, a lock and a rogue.  As bad as they where, the healer was the one I will always remember.  The healer was the one that I will quote every time people ask me why I do not like to tank randoms.

On the last boss I pull and pick him and the adds up.  The hunter goes to get some mobs of his own.  The lock goes to get some mobs of his own.  The rogue does what rogues do, he keeps out of sight.  The healer is tossing heals on everyone.  The hunter, the lock and even the invisible rogue that isn't doing anything.  Everyone but me that is.

The hunter dies, I pick up all the mobs he had pulled.  I get all the mobs the lock has picked up as well.  I have three packs of adds on me and the boss.  A dead hunter, a near dead lock and a missing rogue and I could not buy a heal for the life of me.  Not sure why, but the healer is not healing me.

I pop out of bear to heal myself and the rogue becomes the sacrificial lamb.  Not sure why or how but he comes out of nowhere and grabs aggro on everything and get toasted.  Good for me, it bought me the time to heal.  Thanks rogue.

I round up all the mobs again and slowly get them down one at a time.  Popping out to heal once in a while.  When all is said and done I turn to the healer and ask them why they where not healing me.  They basically said they refused to heal me because I was hogging all the mobs for myself trying to be the hero.

A healer that won't heal the tank because they are trying to be the tank?  Interesting.

~the music begins to get softer as the mist begins to fade and you are returned to... the real time zone~

I tell the two DPS with me on vent about my experience here and they all are baffled by the healer not wanting to heal the tank because they where hogging all the mobs.  We laugh, we move on, the dungeon went fine.  I got achievements every step of the way of course being my bear has never tanked this before.  Come to think of it, my bear has never tanked anything this expansion really except for a few raids and a few normals and the ever so rare heroic (3 maybe) for guild mates.

The only boss that was any problem was the robot.  The only reason for that was because the melee DPS that was with the group never did it.  I told him, no worries, what is the worst that could happen, we wipe?  We all have to learn.

Good thing my two guild mates can rock it.  The guy sucked at the robot and all the fire adds where making it up.  I tell my guild mates to blow everything they have, I can not tank the fire adds and the boss for very long.  They go crazy and blow up the place.  We down the boss when it is me tanking three adds and the boss and the healer had to be in panic mode.  Every single time I've ever been there if even one add gets to the top it is a wipe.  We survived three getting up there with no deaths. 

The fire guys never made it past me.

They better not.  I am the tank, nothing gets past me.  That is my job.

My guild mates popped time warp, the fight was done before the buff wore off.  Two 30K+ DPS going off on that boss made quick work of him.  Holy crap I thought that was a wipe.  Once again, proof positive, DPS is everything in this game.  Any other group and that was a wipe 100% of the time.

When it is over I actually start to feel a little confident in my tanking but I freely admit that it was not so much me feeling confident in my tanking as me being confident with those two behind me DPSing.  If anything, I got to see first hand how well I can hold aggro.  Not even once did I lose anything, and with that type of DPS behind me, I was happy.  Not bad for a bear that still has 2 PvP items and 3 items 325 or less equipped.  Yes, I have tanked firelands with that gear too and did just fine. 

They ask if I want to do another and I say yes.  I think I am actually starting to like tanking randoms now.  Like I said, helps when you have good DPS behind you.  Good DPS makes the game fun for me to tank.

The queue pops up and we land in ZA.  Oh crap.  Queued for the wrong one.  I've never tanked this on my bear.  Not to mention, we will need all three DPS to not be complete tools for this to work.

I give fair warning to my new healer and DPS and tell them I have never tanked this on my bear but have on my warrior so I know the fights and how to tank them.

They are cool with it.  Then again, what where they going to do even if they where not cool with it?  They can not kick me, I am with two guild mates.

I tell my guild mates I will attempt but if I can not handle it I will drop group and they can continue without me, at least they are in with the instant queue.

We head out and surprisingly I am doing a lot better on my bear then I did on my warriors first run through.  Never lost any of the guys going up the hill.  Picked up every single runner and birds with no problem.  Maybe I can do this on my bear.  Again, helps when things go down faster thanks to good DPS.

First boss goes down with only one death, not mine of course.  A dead tank there would be a bad thing.  Can already tell the healer is not all that great.  We barely made it through the first boss and almost lost more than one person.

We walk across and the healer says AFK.  Someone must have stepped one step too close and started the three guys.  Oh crap, well, lets get at 'em.  I charge in and we start laying the smack down on them.  We get one down, get close to getting the second down when I go down and then all the DPS take a dirt nap.

Wipe, but at least it was not the bears fault, it was just a whoops moment without a healer.  We got one and almost two down with no healer.  Not to shabby if you ask me.

We go across and kill the two bears and then out of nowhere mobs come flying at us from what seems like everywhere.

You know those four mobs at the top of the steps?  The ones you need to walk up to the start the event where they walk down?  The ones that are behind a wall in another room basically?  Well, as we killed the second bear, the four of them came at us, outside of that room, to where the two bears are.

WTF?  How is that even possible?  It is not like someone could have accidentally tab targeted them and even if they did, they are behind a wall half a mile away.  They could not have hit them to aggro them.  How the hell did they pull?  Needless to say, wipe again.  At least they are at the bottom of the stairs now.

Not going so well so far.  At least the 3rd DPS is pulling 15K.  So I have three people over 15K.  Assuming there are no other odd events this will not be a problem at all.  No one expected things from half a mile away to come flying at us so none of us where really ready, so can't blame that wipe on anyone.  I did grab them all but they took me down faster then the healer could get a heal off.  Makes me think, maybe there was a bug and someone did not actually pull the other three earlier.  Maybe they came on their own just like the guys on the steps came on their own.

So far, it has not been a stellar first tanking adventure there on my bear even if none of it was my bears doing.

We get to the bear boss and this is where I suffer from some bear envy.  Why is his bear so much bigger then mine.  This is also where I become sure the healer isn't all that.  They are oom by the end of the fight.  Anyone that has ever healed that fight will tell you they love that fight because there is nothing really to heal.  A few heals here and there on the tank and that is it.  I once healed a tank that was in all DPS gear, gemmed and enchanted for DPS too and never went under 80% mana on that fight.

Either way, they where not great but they where at least capable of doing the job and I don't complain about capable people.

We go along the path to where all the hawks and the trainer is, two scouts end up calling help.  I pick everything up and we get it all down no problem.  I tell my guild mates they have to be faster on those.  Even if we handled it with no problems, there is no excuse for executing wrong.

Yes, I even act like a raid leader in a dungeon when it comes to my own guild mates.  There is never an excuse for not executing things correctly even if you can handle it.

Perhaps that is why I am so harsh in my opinions of who I run into in a random sometimes.  Even if I do take it easier on them than I do on my own people.

Dragonhawk guy goes down in one shot.  That is way better than on my warrior.  I think I wiped on that on my warrior at least 10 times before I got it down.  I guess the experience from doing it on my warrior helped me on my bear.  In the end, the bear is just a warrior, with fur, and fewer cooldowns and abilities.

The other DPS, ret paladin, had to use lay on hands on me or it would have been a wipe.  Second time he saved us.  A ret paladin doing 15K and with a brain.  I think I have seen everything now.  He used it before on the double bear pull leading to the bear boss as well.  Like I said, the healer was not all that good.  Thank god for good DPS and smart DPS.

Lynx boss, the healer manages to lose one of the DPS even with them in the healing totem.  I think you would have to actively try to let someone die when you have unlimited mana and they are getting heals along with your heals.  Again, the healer was not all that good.

The leather agility helm drops and I am beyond excited.  I let out a woot on vent and say, about time, something to finally replace my 325 helm.

My excitement ends quickly as the healer rolls need on it and wins it and then drops group instantly as soon as it hits their bag.   At least they revived the dead person before they did that.  I think they where just waiting as long as they could.  They saw I rolled need.  They knew I was new this content on my bear.  They knew that was my main spec as that was the spec I was running in.  They still stole my helm.

As I said to my guild mates on vent.  I don't so much mind losing it to them.  Maybe they are DPS main spec and only run as a healer to get faster queue.  They are not that good of a healer so it would make sense.  I did not mind they won it.  What did bother me is that they did not say anything about it and that they dropped group.  If they had asked, mind if I roll on that, I need that for feral, I would have said, go ahead.  They didn't ask, that is what upsets me.  They dropped group, that is what upset me more.

I really wanted that helm. Any helm, I have had such bad luck with helms.

We ended up with another healer, a very good one and went on to finish with no incidents.  With the exception of the two rather weird pulls that where not intended at the beginning it was quite an uneventful run.  Even the few mistakes people made like letting two scouts to the drums where non-events.

At the end of the run I was almost thinking that I might actually be willing to tank a normal.

Then I realized that the odds of me getting groups like that would be slim to none.  I went in with two pocket 20K DPS.  What are the odds that you will get that in a random.

I've healed and DPSed a ton of runs if you combine them all.  Only once ever have I been in a run that had two people over 20K (not including myself of course).  So while these runs made me feel as if tanking can indeed be fun and easy in a random setting it is still a matter of luck if it is.

I am not sure I am willing to gamble.  I can't even win a helm when I am the only person that should have been rolling on it.  What exactly are the odds I will always get at least one 20K DPS that knows what they are doing and are not just about the numbers, never the less two.

So I was an accidental tank a couple of weeks ago and it worked out well.  I was an accidental tank running a Zul I did not intend to and had no problems.

A few acceptable runs are not quite enough to shake off that feeling I still get in the pit of my stomach when I think of tanking a random.

What happens if I get a healer that does not want to heal me because I am hogging all the mobs to myself?

While I might be warming up to tanking randoms some and I am really looking to play my bear more now I don't think I am quite heroic ready yet.  I can tank raids, but random heroics scare me.  For the time being at least, the only time I tank will be when I am the accidental tank.

1 comment:

  1. Ah I love your rambles :) [In a non-offensive way that is!]

    Well, not really rambles. But I can feel the frustration in your words,

    - Jamin