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Blood DK mini guide by Ladida

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hey guys, im Lâdida Earthernring http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/character/earthen-ring/L%C3%A2dida/simple


i've been tanking since middle BRF as blood DK.

also anything i say/claim/state, is subject to interpetation, so take everything with a grain of salt.

if you tank alot, or play any class alot, youll always meet that 1 guy thats gonna complain about X-Y-Z and gonna tell you why that is wrong or sub-optimal. 


im here to give you a few guidelines to how i've become a proper DK tank in WoD

first of all, im gonna say this, mastery is good, but it's not the be all end all, invest in some multistrike, and even if it sais haste is your worst stat, stats are still never bad, and haste might just reduce your rune-regen that little bit. so try to not tunnel into heavy mastery items without any other good stats.

2nd of all, talents are good, all of them have their uses, and if you normally play dps DK, there's atleast 1 talent i'd have you take that you don't really/shouldn't really need as dps. Purgatory, you can't go without this unless you have a very reliable group, which i know most of you wont, it's a safety-net you're only one at that, dk's might be famous for having a hotbar's worth of mitigation, but they're not usefull in every situation. purgatory allows you to live past 1 killing blow, making the overkill damage a healing absorptionshield, for a couple of seconds you wont die, but youll have 1 hp with that shield, after those seconds, if that hasnt been healed up by you or your healers, youll die without pardon. an easy out but sometimes dangerous, is vampiricblood+deathpact, or just deathpact. but this will still give you a remaining absorptionshield to be dealt with. so keep that in mind.

3rd, alot of guides INSIST on the idea that you should litteraly have an uptime of 90%+ on your bloodshield (generated by deathstrike), when this is by far not a user-friendly way of tanking cuz you will runestarve yourself and you will stress when damage starts trickling through just too fast for you to deal with calm, you have to find a balance where you have deathstrike available when you need it in an emergency, but also use it on regular basis just to give you a shield (PHYSICAL ONLY!), it takes practice so give yourself some time to adjust, and remember your heal and shield are based on the amount of damage you've recently taken+bloodscent stacks. so you can play around with saving up alot of bloodscent and then letting a couple of hits come through without a shield, to get a big ass heal and shield. but dont runestarve yourself or waste runetime (not using 1 type of rune when none are regenerating, it's wasted runetime cuz itt could already be regenerating if you'd used it).

4th, consider the tank your with, what kind of tank strengths/weaknesses, the boss you're trying to kill (wether you're "good" or "bad" against it etc.), and if you miss something critical like a certain type of healer if there's such a need. outside of that know the boss, and learn to pick up diffrent tactics in pugs/guides, there's alot of diffrent tactics to several bosses, some more viable then others, but it's best to atleast know how to perform on the more common ones so you dont end up having to learn them in the middle of the fight.

5. mitigation, as a deathknight youll have a crazy amount of mitigation buttons to press, all serving for diffrent situations, some adaptable, ill list the sortof situations some are optimal in, and some less optimal situations to use them in.

Xhul horac's Fel/Void-slash, does magic damage, regardless of the type, every second slice you can actually completely ignore instead of using a CD (if you have to use a CD even). anti magic shell is one of the most amazing tools of any DK, and you should learn to use it, eventhough it only lasts 3 seconds and it no longer absorbs litteraly ALL magic damage, it's still incredible, and can actually stop certain debuffs aswell!

Mannoroth's Glaive combo
Glaive thrust->Massive Blast->Glaive thrust. (regarding the Debuff that applies upon failed mitigation)
this is a deadly combo, which if not dealt with properly, is almost certain death.
the difficult/easy thing about it is, if you manage your runes, this will never be a problem, there's 2 ways to not die to this (outside of your other tank actually taunting aswell when he should), glaive thrust when cast, will not only do damage and give you a debuff that will increase the next glaive thrust's damage, but also apply a massive bleed on you if you dont deal with it properly

the cheapest way of doing this is Blood tap, costs you only 1 bloodrune and will last you until after you get hit by massive blast aswell. if you're starved for blood tap charges for whatever reason, there's a second way which might be scary.
your bloodshield from deathstrike, no matter how small it is (litteraly a blood shield of 1, will save you from getting the debuff). counts as active mitigation aswell. eventhough the glaivethrust damage and massive blast damage will still fully come through, atleast you wont get a bleed. that's the only 2 ways to not fuck glaive combo up, other mitigation abilities don't counteract this in any way.

Tyrant Velhari's movement-damage aura.
the movement damage of velhari in P1, is magic damage, but dont let me ever catch you using anti magic shell to absorb movement damage, there's MUCH better places in that fight to protect yourself with that, like annihalating strike, font explosion, firestorm shit, w/e in all of those you save the healers from ALSO having to heal you up, which will save lives.

5th Glyph's
there's actually plenty of usefull glyph's to choose from, i can list them all and tell you when they're good or not, and which ones are never really good. but that's boring, i'd rather have you find glyphs you understand and find usefull on your own merits.
the ones i've used for the longest time (considered semi-bad) are
Glyph of icebound fortitude (changes it to only last 2 seconds, but provide 50% damage reduction)
Glyph of vampiric blood (changes it to no longer heal you for 15%, but increase healing received by 30% instead of the normal 15%, this was really prominent and lovely during BRF because 4set reduced your vampiric blood CD quite good)
Glyph of raise ally (Changes it so your Combat Res, no longer costs you your main resource)

the icebound fortitude is really good when you have high impact damage coming in
(Archimonde's DeathBrand for example) that doesnt require Active mitigation to counteract something. eventhough its only 2 seconds it gives a small moment to see what you can do to make your situation more survivable so to speak.

Vampiric blood, i loved this and i will always love it eventhough it's considered not that great anymore, if you have healers you can trust, or a lovely pally tank with seal of insight w/e, you can give up this heal to make raid healers like druids/holypriests, way more effective if you're missing out on some spothealers/tankhealers, it makes their hots tick so much harder, and the 15% is mostly not going to save you regardless. with my healers i much rather used this then something else.

raise ally, is really not that usefull i must admit, it's a bit of a waste, but in a raid where you lack CR abilities, you can have it, as a tank you should have way less trouble with having runic power to use it, even if you'd rather spend it on something else, occasionally it's an unsung hero for me.

ill leave it at this, if you liked this small guide/intro to dk tanking general stuff. i dont know what this was i just felt like helping out some people in one way or another.
feel free to contact me if you want some more detailed help about DK tanking, Lâdida-Earthernring, or msg me on this if i ever read messages in here, ill surely respond!.


hope it helped someone, and happy raiding ^^
Lâdida Champion of the Frozen Wastes

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