Let's set the scene.
This week I was handed a very forceful, er, painful reminder of why I stopped tanking and that aside from heroics I should probably continue to avoid it. I tried to jump into a 25m pug for ToC that sort of fell apart and turned into two 10mans. They needed a tank. So instead of trying to get gear on my priest, I ended up bear tanking. Painful lessons, I tell you!
Aside from people not knowing fights and the problems that ensue from that, I realized that green goo is damn freaking hard to see when one is tanking Dreadmaw. Ugh! Needless to say, I had superb threat control, but went splat (sometimes before everyone else, sometimes not). Luckily I dodged getting saved, as I think my guild wants to do something different tonight with guild ten mans, a new development!
So, after that disaster I spent most of the week agonizing over bear upgrades which are few and far between. I hate fucking armor penetration. I don't want to play cat. I want to be a bear tank. I would give all the gold on my level 35alt (heh) for gdamn freaking TANK GEAR. In fact, the tier pieces piss me the fuck off with their green stats, while I stare longingly at the (2) and (4) bonuses. I ended up keeping my godforsaken trollwoven shoulders, with mental notes to upgrade belt for sure with crafted gear. Some day. When I'm rolling in crusader orbs and my main raiding gear has already been upgraded.
But, all this was really just lead in. Kalon has been my go-to druid-tank blogger since I stumbled across his blog. I throw his addy at would-be bears in every guild I've been in. It's good stuff.
Right now he's working on a series of posts to contradict, calm, or explain in depth some of the theory, worry, fear, and possibilities for bears in Icecrown.
Me, I'm a big yellow belly bear. I hate change. I grew roots and brownish leaves and went tree when I spent my entire TBC career swearing I'd never every NO NEVER heal because of the armor/stamina changes that happened when Wrath came out. Threw in the towel on tanking. Eventually I remembered how useful it is to have an offspec when the server seemed to suddenly swim in healers (not all good). Plus, it helps me and @xparanormalityx run the daily heroic on all our toons when we can heal/tank 2 of them together.
Why do these changes from "Chill of the Throne" terrify me? Let me tell you. I'm a versatile druid. I had the most fun in TBC in Zul Aman because I was required to use every single trick in my bag, constantly, on almost every boss fight. From battle rezes to innervates to add tanking to dpsing when the other tank had the boss. It was superb fun. But now there's this debuff.
For Icecrown Citadel, we are implementing a spell that will affect every enemy creature in the raid. The spell, called Chill of the Throne, will allow creatures to ignore 20% of the dodge chance of their melee targets. So if a raid's main tank had 30% dodge normally, in Icecrown Citadel they will effectively have 10%.
That blows. I started this by saying that I'm not a theorycrafter and I'm not a main-tank in a raiding guild. I tank heroics. So take all my thoughts with my limitations in mind, please.
I understand druids could tank naked. We don't need defense. Our only mitigation is dodge. Dodge and the silly crit bubbles we have now. Both of which hinge on agility. So, when it comes to bear tanking, primary stats are STAMINA, AGILITY, and then the green bonuses of MORE DODGE, EXPERTISE, HIT, ATTACK POWER, CRIT. That's how I would rank the green stats. Pretty simple compared to warrior tanks, pally tanks, deathknugget tanks. They get crap like Defense that actually does something, parry, block if you're not a DK, these other mitigation forces.
I see it like this. Druids need a lot of dodge because it's really our only mitigation. Stacking stamina is not mitigation, btw. Other tanks get the dodge inherent on their gear, but they also get those other mitigation stats.
|Defense:||540 (-+5.60%)||Def Rating:||690 (+140)|
|Dodge %:||25.89||Dodge Rating:||561 (+12.40%)|
|Parry %:||18.38||Parry Rating:||188 (+4.15%)|
|Block %:||16.88||Block Rating:||103 (+6.28%)|
|Armor:||7324 (32.47%) 28127(64.87%)||Resilience:||0.00|
|Defense:||417 (-+0.68%)||Def Rating:||86 (+17)|
|Dodge %:||29.86 / 38.86||Dodge Rating:||285 (+6.30%)|
|Parry %:||0.00||Parry Rating:||0 (+0.00%)|
|Block %:||0.00||Block Rating:||0 (+0.00%)|
(I had to edit this because the in game bear numbers were different)
prot pally stats vs. my druid's 40% dodge in bear form.
So, with "Chill of the Throne" my bear will drop to 20% dodge. Pyh's dodge will drop to 5% but he'll still have those other mitigation factors.
Armorylite is being a pain and not catching my druid's tank gear, so I'll update this soon once the changes happen.
Needless to say, I don't like having zero options to be a decent tank unless I do nothing but stack stamina. And this change will force druids to do that yet again, while as we geared up we were able to play with expertise, hit and arpen for threat generation.
I did say I was resistant to change, right? I like what Jacemora said.