The Unholy Tank and You: Stats
Interestingly enough, we find our hero surprisingly happy for once as he puts a rune onto his newest one-handed weapon. In the Ebon Hold of course!…..
“Horray, it took so many deaths of the worthless living, but I finally got myself a one-handed sword!”, exclaims the sugar high Death Knight as he walks away from us and continues his bragging to the new recruits of the Knights of the Ebon Blade. Running back to his fans, Elnoriah decides he wants to teach you all something once again, what great luck, you must have caught him in a really good mood!
Hmm, it would seem as if we lost a few of you recruits of the Death Knight tanking, really who failed at retrieving glyphs like I explained last time? Fine, it does not matter, the living ones are the only ones that I tend to educate right now, so now my friends, your next lesson in the art, no BEAUTY of tanking is the stats you should all be achieving before you start tanking your heroics and raids.
The Run Down: Throughout here I will be going through the basics of what stats are the most important, as well as what are some nice stats that you should have as a starting out DK tank. This guide will be fairly basic, but it will hopefully inform all of you newer tanks out there how to gear yourself properly, as well as being able to figure out if that piece of gear you just got is really better then the gear you have on you right now. Without further adieu, let us begin our lesson today!
Defense Rating: For any single tank that you all have played, want to play, or will play, this stat is arguably the MOST IMPORTANT stat of your life. This stat alone is what boosts your Defense Skill so you tanks out there do not get ROFLSTOMPED by the next crit that was supposed to have come you way. It also helps a small bit to boost your avoidance, but it should not be stacked. In WOTLK you will be needing 540 defense skill, basically this means when you look on your character sheet and look at your defense stats, where it says Defense it should be in the 540 range. I am not saying to stack Defense Rating at all, but what I am saying, is that you need to have at least 540, after that make sure you are capped and stay capped for the rest of your lives as a tank!
Avoidance Stats: For a Death Knight tank there are two avoidance stats that you can and will be acquiring during your tanking career, the first being Parry, and the second being Dodge. Most of my guilds that I have been in have given a small rule to think about if you want to be tanking their Naxx 10’s and various raids, add all of your avoidance skills up, and if they do not come to around 30% in total, don’t think about tanking unless we tell you to. First let us take a gander at parry, Parry for DK’s is quite important, one of our main threat attacks, Rune Strike only works when we parry or dodge an attack. When you parry, you take your weapon, or weapons, and stop their attack with your weapon. Dodge is our second and final avoidance stat, you will get this from Anticipation as well as the gear you are wearing. Dodge scales better with the gear then parry so you will probably have more Dodge then your parry which is fine, just fine. Either way you should do the math and add up your dodge and parry if you get 3o% or more that is fantastic, if not, just keep working on your gear and you will get it soon!
Hit Points: If I was to take an order of all the tanking stats we could possibly get, our health would be the second stat we would be focusing on as a tank. The first of course is to get the Defense Rating to be uncrittible along with your avoidance which increase all the time anyways, even if you do not focus on them. Health is needed to take the large attacks that your bosses and mobs throw at you, but it should not substitute your uncrittibility at all. You will get health from talents, but mostly from Stamina which you will be finding on all of your gear as a tank. A minimum amount of health that should be suggested to a new tank would be around 23K-24k health, but remember, uncrittibility first, THEN your health!
Armor: Unless you have been in a box in the middle of some deserted town, you should know by now that Death Knights can NOT use shields at all, this means, that we will be taking a lot more hits form our mobs then any other tank on the face of Azeroth (or Outland if you want to be a smart ass)! While in our ONLY tanking presence, Frost Presence, you will notice we get our armor contribution from items boosted by 60%. Armor need not be stacked or worried about, but a good tank should have around 60% damage reduced from armor. Congratulations Death Knights, you will have absolutely no problem getting this 60%, seriously armor and us would be married had we not turned it down at the alter… but she still loves us!
Hit Rating and Expertise: Wait, Elnoriah, these are DPS stats, I do not want this, you are seriously insane man! Actually, a little bit of hit goes a long way, think of us as an Arms Warrior that tanks, well we do not need to reach the Death Knight hit cap to tank, but the hit rating is welcomed and loved by any seasoned Death Knight Tank. See, both of these stats allow our attacks have a higher chance of landing a successful blow on our enemies, thus why DPS LOVE these stats, sort of like how armor loves us, except they actually married it and had many children. This is not a stat we should be striving for as a tank, but if you are picking up hit rating and expertise, do not think you are doing something wrong, DK tanks more so than any other tank in WoW, need a tiny bit of Hit Rating to get a little extra threat from their attacks.
Strength: All of you are probably looking at me like I am a maniac, do not fret, for I am in fact insane, but when I suggest a bit of STR it really is for the best. A Death Knight’s abilities are all based off of Attack Power, STR gives us an insane amount of AP, if I am not too tired to remember, I think it is 1 STR to 2 AP! More AP = our abilities doing much more damage, and more damage makes more threat, yes sir that is a great combo there, but that is not all STR does for us. An equivalent of 25% of our STR is given to our Parry Rating (no it does not go bye-bye, it is just a multiplier) and as I said earlier, avoidance stats are the icing to the cake. Once again do not stack STR thinking that you will be Jesus-Tank MK V, but it is a decent stat to compare if you are still stumped on your gear.
Writer’s Update: I still have not recovered from my earning of the new one handed sword, yes it’s completely horrible, but I still will not stop grinning from the hoorah that I gave vent last night when it dropped! Either way, my newest weekly poll has been up since Sunday and I would advise you all ot vote here. The topic being, Will You Be Dual Weilding This Upcoming Patch? Happy WoWing!