I Hate Threat, Threat Hates Me

Aggro-Magnet-in-Training
Aggro-Magnet-in-Training

Recognition is a Bear Tank, or at least that’s what she’s meant to be… The only problem is I know almost nothing about tanking and even less about tanking with a bear.

Embarrassingly I have to admit that my use of her up to this point has mostly been to auto-attack and taunt everything that moves.

Not really an effective use of my time (or hers).

So now it’s time to break out the books, and the wiki, (and Big Bear Butt‘s archives) and start learning about what it is I’m trying to do!

What is Threat?

Threat is a numerical value of how much each mob hates me– whoever has the highest number wins the love of the critters who are trying to have Druid for Dinner™.

Each mob has it’s own threat table, where it keeps track of who it hates most. My job is to keep Recognitions numbers higher than everyone else in the party.

How is Threat Generated?

Threat is generated by a) dealing damage b) an ability that causes threat or c) healing.

Threat is not caused by: Getting hit by a mob or getting healed by another player.

Threat does not decay, so unless you use an ability to lower your threat level– you yank it, you tank it (at least until the tank can take it back again).

Moar Threat Pleez

Almost What You Are Looking For But Not Quite

There are a wide range of things that act as passive multipliers to how much (or how little) threat you generate. I don’t have any auras that can help, but things in Recognition’s favor are: She’s in a tank spec, she’s in a tank form.

She has abilities that will generate threat (beyond damage):

  • Faerie Fire – generates threat
  • Growl – sets threat equal to the highest person on the threat table and forces the mob to attack you for three seconds
  • Maul – there seems to be some disagreement on if this generates additional threat or not. Still looking into this one…

Note: Challenging Roar – does NOT generate threat! All it does is change who they are attacking for six seconds.

My Threat, Gimme!

So let’s say Pattern has gotten her birdie-behind into trouble and I need to yank her threat away.

  • If she’s in melee range (not likely) I’ll need to get to 110% of her threat number.
  • If she’s outside of melee range it will take 130%

Using Growl will pull us even and if I stop attacking with Pattern that should give Recognition time to catch up before the ‘must chew on Bear’ compulsion wears off.

So I need to give Recognition a macro that targets whatever is targeting Pattern and casts Growl, and then a sister macro on Pattern that stops her from attacking. (We’ll assume for now that whatever is targeting Pattern is the thing she is pew pew’ing.)

/target Pattern /target targettarget /cast Growl

And then one to stop everything Pattern is doing… too bad I can’t turn off the DoTs as well.

/stopcasting /stopattack

Or, if I’m feeling like some overkill, I can just toss Pattern into a shadowmeld and blow the two minute cooldown. Hmm…

Working the Numbers

I have Omen and Tidy Plates : Threat Plates installed and I’m going to head out to the hills to run some tests. I’m looking to find out how much threat Recognition is usually generating and how many spells (and which ones) Pattern can safely cast without getting nom’d on.

Although all I’m doing with them right now is questing, I do plan on using this pair to roam the various dungeons. There’s a lot of the content that I didn’t get to run through and I’m itching to see if I can pull it off semi-solo.

There’ll be another post in a bit, once I have all the foundation work done and I have some useful bits to share!


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