Enjoying your tanking

Sure, Unholy’s fairly weak for tanking, but does it matter?

The usual argument I hear, a flawed one at that, is “you pay your $15, you choose your spec”. That is true in a solo game. In a raid, no, you should pick a good spec that works, or you impact the other 9 or 24 people’s ability to progress. If you want to pick a useless spec, go play solo.

That said, Unholy tank is not useless. It isn’t a fail-tank spec. It is not as good as Blood or Frost, but it is good enough for many raiders outside hard-modes. (I still wouldn’t use it.)

However Vigan and CSPenn like Unholy tanking. They’re not retards. In fact, Chris is a Professor.

If they were in guilds doing hard-modes, they’d have to respec into Blood or Frost. If their raid was wiping on normal modes because of tank-death events or healer throughput/mana issues (ie. not enough damage reduction talents), they’d have to respec. I think those kinds of signs would be in your face pretty fast, and a smart person would consider a respec.

I’ve long hoped that Unholy would be viable, I like it, but I’m letting go of that attachment because now I cannot see it as good enough for me. My guild really does our best, in our limited raid time, to progress as best we can. I do not want to give any edge to Blizzard’s AI if I can tilt the game in my favour instead.

Fail specs are:

You can fail in other ways that are more catastrophic, like allowing mobs to hit you up the ass (you should always face the enemy), or tanking in unholy presence (oops, most of us have done that once after a wipe run). You could raid with dps who cannot target switch quickly enough, etc.

Point is, if you personally love Unholy, why not use it? Whilst I’d not recommend Unholy in ICC, there is a question of finding the balance between enjoying yourself and success. Sometimes you have to make personal compromises in order to succeed. If Unholy is not causing failure conditions, and you love it, then keep that bone shield spinning.

For others like me, who optimise just for the sake of optimisation: Frost or Blood.

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20 comments to Enjoying your tanking

  • Ohdissius

    I don’t understand why there is so much debate about this topic honestly…unholy used to be a barely viable tank spec at best, frost was what blizzard was forcing everyone into, patch after patch… I know that it’s just a game and everyone wants to play how they want to, but honestly when it comes down to progression and performance of your role, how can you really be satisfied taking a sub-par spec and be happy with it?  Just to say you did?  Frost and blood tank specs out-perform unholy on every level.   Snap threat.  Sustained threat.  DPS.  Mitigation.  Cooldowns.  Raid utility.  Every single thing that a tank could possibly think their role is, Frost and Blood spec’s do far better than Unholy.
    Think about it, even with max charges on Bone Shield, you get 6 hits and its gone, then for the remainder of the minute you have nothing.  How long does it take you to get hit 6 times from some source of damage, maybe 10 seconds?  max?  so for 50 seconds every minute you have no extra mitigation from bone shield.  That’s a really significant amount of time every minute to be without the only mitigation that an Unholy tank spec offers.
    I don’t mean to be offensive, but I’ve played this game since release, and I am ALWAYS looking for ways to improve my performance to help my guild progress.  If I can be better, I will be, and that’s the bottom line.  I may enjoy doing something, like playing a certain spec, or whatever, but in my opinion that is what heroics are for.  At the end of the day, I like sitting on a new raid boss’s corpse oogling epics, and the best and quickest way to do that is to maximize my own performance, ESPECIALLY as the tank.
    I am a pretty methodical player and have sunk hundreds of gold into respecs/reglyphs to test out every viable option for different specs, especially on my Death Knight as it’s a newer class than the rest, and I can tell you that unholy, without a doubt, is a DPS spec for raids, and a great DPS spec – but it is NOT a tank spec.  If you are trying to make it a tank spec, you are holding your guild back from progressing, or just expecting your healers to perform better than they should have to.  I don’t doubt that people do raid as unholy tanks, and sometimes don’t die, and are able to down some new content, but I guarantee it is not because you are a great tank – it’s because your healers are pro.

  • Arencey

    Makes sense, I’ve always thought unholy seemed like one of the squishier dk tank specs. I personally think it’s a very good off tank spec even for icc so long as you have a tough warrior main tank or something of the like to handle bosses.

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