Classic Warrior Tank Spell Summary
On this page, we present you with all spells and procs that you need to understand as a Warrior Tank in WoW Classic.
If you were looking for TBC Classic content, please refer to our TBC Classic Protection Warrior spells.
This page will list the relevant skills for a Warrior tank and explain what they do. It is recommended that you read through this page in order to have a basis for the various topics that are discussed throughout the rest of this guide.
Stances for Warrior Tanks
Warriors are always in one of three stances:
- Battle Stance is the starting stance of your character and is mostly used to Charge into enemies before combat begins or for the occasional Mocking Blow.
- Defensive Stance is your primary stance as a tanking Warrior. It is obtained through a trainer quest at Level 10, and increases your threat generated, while reducing both your damage dealt and taken.
- Berserker Stance is obtained through another trainer quest, this time at Level 30, and increases your critical strike at the cost of increased damage taken. You will mostly use it to quickly activate Berserker Rage, following it up with a swap back to Defensive Stance.
Core Rotational Abilities for Warrior Tanks
Shield Slam deals Physical damage to a single-target, modified by your block value. It causes high threat, and also has a 50% chance of dispelling one magic effect.
Sunder Armor reduces the armor of one enemy and stacks up to 5 times. Although it deals no damage itself, it causes a high amount of threat when used.
Heroic Strike replaces your next auto-attack, causing it to grant no Rage, deal extra damage, cause extra threat, and gain "special attack" properties. This mostly means it will have an increased chance to hit and ignore glancing blow mechanics. Use it to dump excess Rage.
Cleave also replaces your next auto-attack, but it also hits an additional target. This makes it useful for Rage dumping on AoE situations, but you should be careful as, unlike Heroic Strike, Cleave does not cause extra threat.
Demoralizing Shout reduces the attack power of nearby enemies and causes a small amount of threat on them. You will typically use this to gain initial AoE threat on packs of enemies.
Thunder Clap (requires Battle Stance) deals minor damage to up to 4 enemies around you, and reduces their attack speed by 10%. Due to its high Rage cost and stance requirements (which, in turn, makes its threat generation low), it is a skill usually left for the most powerful of enemies.
Baseline Passives for Warrior Tanks
Dodge allows you to avoid a melee attack, as long as you are facing the enemy when he is attacking.
Parry also causes you to avoid a melee attack if you are facing the enemy. Unlike dodge, however, parrying makes your next auto-attack happen faster.
Block allows you to use a shield to block incoming attacks, reducing their damage by an amount that depends on your block value.
Mitigation Skills for Warrior Tanks
Shield Block (requires Defensive Stance) is not on the global cooldown, allowing you to use it at any time, provided it is ready and you have enough Rage. It increases your block chance massively and can be kept up with 100% uptime against slow hitting bosses, once you talent into Improved Shield Block. If you are playing defensively, having the best uptime possible on this skill is of paramount importance, as you will be impossible to be hit with a critical hit or crushing blow during its effect.
Cooldowns for Warrior Tanks
Last Stand increases your maximum health by 30% for 20 seconds, with a cooldown of 10 minutes. Use it to survive through enrage phases, or as an emergency button.
Shield Wall (requires Defensive Stance) reduces all damage taken by 75% for 10 seconds. Essentially, it works as a stronger, less often available, Last Stand. It shares a 30-minute cooldown with Retaliation and Recklessness.
Taunt (requires Defensive Stance) forces a target to attack you for a short duration, on a cooldown of 10 seconds, and raises your threat on the target to the amount the person currently holding aggro has.
Challenging Shout causes all nearby targets to focus on you for 6 seconds, effectively working as an area of effect Taunt with the same properties. It has a cooldown of 10 minutes and a Rage cost of 5, however.
Mocking Blow (requires Battle Stance) also forces a target to attack you, but unlike Taunt, it will not raise your threat level on the enemy, so keep in mind you will have to Taunt once its effect expires, should you want to continue having the enemy's attention. It has a much higher cooldown of 2 minutes.
Bloodrage causes you to gain Rage, at the cost of health, and places you in combat for its 10-second duration.
Retaliation (requires Battle Stance) causes you to retaliate against enemy melee attacks for 15 seconds, as long as you are facing the enemies. It shares a 30-minute cooldown with Recklessness and Shield Wall.
Recklessness (requires Berserker Stance) makes you immune to fear and ensures most attacks are critical hits for its 15-second duration, but it also increases your damage taken by 20% and shares a 30-minute cooldown with Retaliation and Shield Wall.
Movement Abilities for Warrior Tanks
Intercept (requires Berserker Stance) also makes you sprint towards an enemy, but instead of generating Rage, it costs 10 to use. It stuns for 3 seconds, however, making it great for intercepting enemies you lost aggro on.
Crowd Control Abilities for Warrior Tanks
Concussion Blow stuns an enemy for 5 seconds, with a cooldown of 45 seconds. Use it to temporarily disable enemies you are not building threat on, or as a damage mitigation tool.
Intimidating Shout causes a target enemy to cower in fear and 5 additional enemies to flee. While it can, technically, be used to gain breathing room in emergencies, be careful of the fleeing enemies coming back with additional mobs.
Piercing Howl slows all nearby enemies by 50% for 6 seconds. Use it to avoid melee attacks in a pinch or to stop enemies from running away.
Group Buffs from Warrior Tanks
Battle Shout increases the melee attack power of the party by a fixed amount for a long duration. It also causes a small amount of threat, multiplied by all party members hit, but divided by all enemies present, which can make it a decent AoE threat generator.
Utility Abilities for Warrior Tanks
Berserker Rage (requires Berserker Stance) removes and grants immunity to fear and incapacitate effects for 10 seconds, on a 30-second cooldown. You will need to use this against bosses that fear, if Fear Ward is not an option.
Shield Bash (requires Battle Stance or Defensive Stance) deals a minor amount of damage and interrupts the target, locking the interrupted spell school for 6 seconds, on a 12-second cooldown. Use it to avoid dangerous casts from spell caster enemies or to make them able to be moved while spell locked.
- 28 Jan. 2021: Minor text change.
- 04 Jun. 2020: Added Challenging Shout.
- 12 Jun. 2019: Page added.
- Population Caps Increased, New Realm Added to Season of Discovery
- Season of Discovery Now Live
- Season of Discovery PvP Rank Caps
- Season of Discovery WoWCast Episode
- Season of Discovery Guides
- Season of Discovery Global Launch Times: When Does the Update Go Live?
- Icy Veins Launches Genshin Impact Guides Section
- Honor Decay Removed In Season of Discovery and Classic Era