Global Warming- A Frost Death Knight’s One Weakness!
“Who’s your Daddy!?”, screams the blue haired elf beating on the target dummy in Silvermoon City. “Hmmph, well this one was obviously not made to sustain blows from a REAL tank!” Yes, he has quite a swelled ego…
As much as I would love to, and I mean LOVE to just end my test here with Frost spec, I could not. No, not because it is moral, or fair, but because I would not be able to live with myself not completing a simple task for a second week with a new spec. Yes, I have loved unholy to death, and honestly, it is a great spec, but the changes that are happening in the upcoming patch does make me frown. Though, I hate to quit, really I do, but Frost is just honestly SO fun! See an easy way before we go into further detail is a giant game of tanking wack-a-mole, though, there are two specs that I would like to break down for you tanks out there willing to look at frost in detail. The first would be my spec, this spec focuses on large amounts of threat, especially the boss/single target kind. The second is a guildy’s off spec of mine that was used in last night’s Nax run (Amazing job leading that by the way Mr. Raid Leader!) said spec is largely focused on the Improved Icy Talons ability. (Do not fret, we will talk about this in a few moments!)
Elnoriah’s Build: The tanking styles are almost similar, though the main difference is that ALL of my spells do more damage, thus resulting in more threat. Thank you to Black Ice all of my spells’ damage increases by 10%, that is a HUGE boost of threat, huge enough to really differentiate Unholy and Frost. (This fun analysis will be featured towards the end of the post.) The other thing would be that my old Scourge Strike was traded out for good old Obliterate, and with the help of Annihilation my diseases are not consumed by the obliterate, giving me much more room to use this attack freely. Why is my threat larger then his, sure I have better gear for one thing, but what is it that he does not have that I do have? That would be all of the talents I have mentioned and more, see, my spec is focused soley towards tanking the bosses, for you see, that is what I have been doing since I have joined this guild. The Unholy spec I used to have is much more of an Off -Tank spec, yes , I can tank as that spec being a Main Tank, but this was just made the taunt buttons and O SHI- buttons needed only on a regular basis. So for a simple short summary, basically my spec revolves around the idea of tanking bosses and producing the most ammount of threat possible.
Guildy’s Build: The second tanking choice for any aspiring Frost Tank out there would be the, as I like to call it, Imp Icy Talons Build, I called this sheer genius all during last night since from spider wing until Military, we lost our Shaman for a Rogue. Improved Icy Talons is a buff every time my guildy uses Icy Touch (which you should be using as a tank) that grants all melee attacks 20% more haste, so since 60% of the group was meleeing (tanks, lock/hunter pets, melee dps) this was practically a constant Bloodlust for them. Jesus Christ, that spiked our dps significantly, so for a lack of shamans in our guild, this guy is pro when he tanks, at least for the melee. Obviously, by putting talent points into this here talent, he could not have put talents in some of the other talents that I use to generate more threat. Notice, he picked up Hungering Cold, before I was commenting on that, he was able to show me why he picked it. I was healing last night, and on Noth the Plague-bringer he was picking up the adds. Then Jesus Christ somehow adds were coming onto me, and his runes were all on cool down with his taunts, skillfully he popped his Hungering Cold and saved my priestly ass. The main difference is that he also has more runic power then me, 30 more to be exact. That is enough for another Frost Strike, which of course is one of the main threat builders for a Frost tank.
See, neither of these specs are wrong at all, the only difference is what they do, yes both of them tank so in the end the job is done. The spec he has could do either OT or MT, but for our case he is generally better as an OT, he takes hits just as well as the next guy, but his threat is not as high as mine, and probably will never be. But to the dps, he is Jesus Christ himself, melee haste how delicious, I swear Klin must have been creating a shrine in his closet for him. Honestly, this guy is one Death Knight you want in your raid, no matter what the spec, he has his Talons just for you.
The Cross Examination: *Straps a latex glove on* Now zen class, ve shall be looking at zee differences betveen zee Unholy and zee Frost, now take your seats and pay attention! I will be honest, Unholy picks up where Frost lacks, the place I would like to call Multi-Mob tanking, used for trash. With Unholy Blight and a much more powerful Death and Decay, unholy is the King of AoE’s likewise making it the best 5 man heroic tanking spec in my opinion. As for raid tanking, my old spec did the job right as it should, though it is a much better Off Tank spec rather then a Main Tank spec. Mostly because it does not have all of the O SHI- buttons, nor can it take hits as well as its Frost Brethren.
Now the first thing that I noticed on the first H UP run I did, was that it was much more of a challenge to put threat on multiple targets. Unholy I would just Death and Decay, Put the DoTs on, Unholy Blight, Blood Boil and they would be on me for the rest of the pull. Now it is more like, Howling Blast, Blood Boil, Blood Boil, Obliterate the Skull, Frost strikes on the UPCOMING trash mob. So as you can see, much more target switching is needed in a frost tanking, multi-mob situation rather then Unholy where I could sip my lemonade and laugh as Death and Decay worked its magic. So the MY personal favorite for Heroics would be the Unholy Spec, even for Off Tanking, this bad boy allows you to gain multiple targets on you at once, and make sure AoE’s do not rip off of you!
When the guild needed my help in finishing up their Nax run from the week I was not there, I decided to help them the day they had to finish Plague/Saph/KT during this I tanked stupendously, much better then with Unholy. Was I doing something different? YES, it was a new spec, much more threat on the bosses was gained by moi, as well as a lot more survivability from the increase in cool downs. The healers did not need to break a robe to save me from eternal damnation from bosses, honestly, I think they loved it almost as much as me. See I love the game Wack-A-Mole, and frost tanking basically was this. You needed to watch for your Rime and Killing Machine procs, when said things happened you needed to use your Howling Blast for rime, and an Icy Touch/Frost Strike/Howling Blast for Killing machine. Rime gives the Death Knight a free Howling Blast, so more AoE for me, and Killing machine was a free crit on any of those spells of your choice. Obliterate/Frost Strike can crit for 5K, so Jesus Christ it was sometimes hard for OT’s to pull off of me! Unholy sadly will, and could never pull this much single target threat as frost, so tragic! So obviously my pick for raiding would be Frost, for MT or OT this tree owns it!
Of course, when I announced that my next tree to try out will be Blood Tanking, I think almost everyone reading was face palming. First of all, a good chunk of them think DW tanking is stupid/impossible to say the least, so they generally feel that Blood Tanking will be the same. Oh well, they will hopefully be eating their words, least that is my plan! So until next time, this Death Knight is, playing some PvP!
Writer’s Update: Naxx, good god, best one the guild has had since I joined. I would like to express my personal thanks to my new boss/Raid Leader, and of course long time good friend, Klinderas, for making this happen and turning our guild into something that has a damned good shot at raiding for once! Seriously man, even Aifel could not find any dirt about last night!(And that’s saying something =P) To last night and many more like it to come, I will say it was… *ahem* “FABULOUS”. There, You happy now, I said it! Happy WoWing!