Tanking for Dummies

3.1 Commentary – The Implications of Dual-Spec
April 6, 2009, 12:01 am
Filed under: Advice for Non Tanks, Talents | Tags: , , , , ,

I have been revising this post again and again since I first composed it as details have emerged about 3.1.  Time is running short, however, so I’ve taken the liberty to try to strip it down to the most basic elements in anticipation of the upcomming patch.

Needless to say one of the things that I am most looking forward to in the near future is the ability to swap seamlessly between two selections of talents, aka Dual-Spec.  I’m glad that Blizzard is taking this on, but from my little soapbox this seems like it will have some pretty broad implications for Warrior Tanking, I think even things that may have escaped notice in the omni-present opinion pages of the blogosphere.To start with the obvious, there are likely going to be a lot more warrior tanks. Or, at least, there are going to be lot more warriors that choose one of their specs as protection.  That means two things to me: competition for gear and asshat-ery.  One of these will likely go away in time (you can only stay a newb for so long before either you give up on tanking, or people give up on you as a tank).  The other is likely to only increase, as warriors increasingly look to work on multiple gear sets in earnest.  This may be true of multiple classes, so raid leaders and officers should be advised to re-examine their loot rules to make sure that concerns of their members are taken into account.  This is Even more important because it is likely that Blizzard will design encounters with highly mutable raid composition in mind (particularly in terms of tanks and healers).

While I am making some wild predictions, expect some major alterations to Custom UIs. Though the announced integrade gear management add-on has been delayed to a future patch, dual-spec presents a pretty massive change to the base UI.  I would expect this will translate to changes to popular add-ons/mods like Dominos, Grid, and others.  I can only imagine the programming challenges that revisions to the base Blizzard UI would entail, I’m no developer for mods or otherwise. However, this will present new opportunities as well as the necessity to rethink things.  If you have friends who, like me, are very heavy on the add-ons, I would expect some serious head-aches.

Expect Armory listings to become more irrelevant than they already are. If it is already bad that I cannot view the Glyphs a player is using through the Armory, imagine what it will be like if you cannot view both specs a player is using.  “Log out in your tanking gear” is one thing when you are recruiting, but surreptitiously stalking checking out people on the Armory is nearly irrelevant if they’re logged out in the PvP or DPS spec.  Or heck, in their other tanking spec (I know I need a threat spec and a mitigation spec).  Face it, you’re just going to need to talk to them avatar to avatar.

If you play the auction house, there are massive gains to be made on patch day. This is usually true, but in this case I would bet on the Goblin Mutual Funds that are heavily in Glyphs and high end BoE rare and epic gear.  Anyone with a crap-ton of money to drop is going to be making sure their main is sitting on the best that the AH can provide.  The high rollers are usually DPS specs, so the real big money is probably in those items that are for tanking and healing.  Oh, and don’t forget enchants and gems for that gear as well.  Start buying when it is confirmed that Dual-Spec is live on the test realm, you’ll reap the rewards if you put it up on Monday night before the patch.

And lastly, for my fellow bloggers, expect a spike in traffic on posts dealing with spec and gear suggestions. Be sure to check your own archives and make sure that the information is up to date, and if it isn’t… time for a new post!  Happy trawling!


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