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Elnoriah’s Spec, Frost Style!

September 11, 2009

No, not THAT Frost!

No, not THAT Frost!

Koltira, buddy, remember I saved you awhile back from the Scarlet Crusade? Yes, it is time to pay up, give me your shoulders you slimy bastard.

No Love, Elnoriah….

I will be honest, pretty much all I have been doing lately is playing the Death Knight, Dual Wielding is just so refreshing, it is a lot harder to balance the gear and the stats, and a bit more challenging to play. Now, before we go deep into the play style of it, should we not learn a bit about my spec? As most of you should know by now, this spec will obviously be a little bit different from the normal Frost Spec.

Two-Handed Frost Tanking: Alright, my Frost spec is a general and common build. There really is not that much that I could and should be playing with, some people switch a few more points into Blood for the Two-Handed Weapon Specialization which is not a bad idea at all, because 4% more damage is quite a decent amount to add to your damage. Though, what I would be taking it out of is a bit of an awkward sacrifice, should I take it out of my Unholy Tree’s Epidemic so that my diseases do not go for and additional 6 seconds/full rotation. Not a smart move in my opinion, because honestly, it makes more sense, a full rotation is more threat then a bit of a rotation and diseases. Other then that, it is your general common Frost Build, lots of nice Death Runes, and the Avoidance/Armor Bonuses that Frost is known and loved for.

Dual Wield Frost Tanking: This is where it begins to get interesting, my DW Frost spec is odd to say the least, the lack of Death Runes disturbed me at first. But really though, I never seem to have a time where it has seriously effected my abilities as a Tank, people still do not pull off me so that is a great sign. The funny thing is that I am pulling around 700 more Threat per Second (TPS) then with the 2H, why though, I have been trying to figure out two things. First, Rime, which is a talent that has a chance on each Obliterate critical to give you a free Howling Blast, which is a huge threat booster, had been proccing significantly more than it did during 2H Tanking. Then the second was why am I doing more threat with two one-handed weapons?

Threat of the Thassarian was the answer to both of those questions, when read it says Obliterate/Frost Strike/Blood Strike/Plague Strike have a 100% chance (with 3 Ranks) to do damage with the off-hand weapon. Okay, that would explain a bit of Threat, but why was Rime proccing so often, it is not like my Obliterates get a better chance as one-handed weapons to proc that skill. Of course I was wrong in a sense.

Butlers are for cool kids only!

Butlers are for cool kids only!

Opening up the combat log, every time I would Obliterate an enemy, I would hit with my main hand Obliterate, then a white damage strike, followed up by the off-hand Obliterate. Two Different Obliterates! If I Crit with both of them, it essentially counts as two Obliterate Criticals. Now, basic Math will tell each of us that Two Critical Hits have a better chance to proc Rime then One Critical Hit, thus explaining why Rime was proccing that much more.

Howling Blast is one of the hardest hitting, and practically a Frost Tank’s best ability as a Tank (aside from good ol’ Rune Strike), so getting one that costs no runes and does the normal amount of damage and can still be a Crit is a huge threat boost, obviously.

Another big threat giver was all of that delicious Parry that I have gotten out of DW, all due to the Runes that I am using on my weapons. Both have Rune of Swordbreaking, which each give 2% more Parry, and 50% less time disarmed. Parry of course triggers our largest threat-giving attack, Rune Strike, so the more parry I get, the larger chance to use Rune Strike. Pretty simple concept, no?

Similarities, of course: Except for the DW only talents, and the lack of some extra blood talents, these specs are almost identical. Why though, mostly because I really do enjoy the two talents in Blood that I always take. Sure, there are definitely some Frost Talents that I would not have mind taking, but to sacrifice some extra threat and to take 5% more damage, it really is not worth it. Honestly, my DW spec is based right off of my 2H spec which is a spec I am very comfortable with, there really are very limited (if any) flaws in that spec, so basing my DW spec to look like it seems practical.

Happy WoWing!
-Eld

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. November 17, 2009 2:12 PM

    I am researching some death knight info for a new recruit to my guild about dual wield tanking. I don’t have a lot of time to peruse a ton of Interwebz info but I noticed your site and am wondering if you have a post on DW rotation and stat priorities that may differ from the standard tanking priority of Def>Exp>Hit>Parry=Dodge? I don’t play a DK so any info would be really helpful. Also, would you mind if I linked you to my Blog as my DK refrence?

    • November 17, 2009 3:20 PM

      Sure, link us! Thanks!

      As for the rotation, it actually does not change, use the standard Frost one. (or HB specced if he is doing that).

      As for your stat priorities, you hit the nail on the head. DWers obviously want the Defense cap, but Expertise of 26-30 is generally the next most desired. Avoidance for DWing will generally come from their gear, rather than gemming/enchanting for it. Hit is important, but you will want to focus on Expertise especially!

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