Transitioning from a healer to a tank

I have been trying to boost my confidence in tanking but I am still really hesitant.  Healing is just SO much more comfortable.  I can do it half asleep.  I can do it one handed - well sortof.  Not really.  I might need to hit shift every now and then whilst clicking mouse buttons.  But it still feels really unnatural to be tanking, being in melee, and all I can see is my big fat ass...

I find myself looking at info about resto druids in MoP and then thinking - oh, wait, no, I'm looking at the wrong thing.  I'm supposed to be looking at tanking!


I think the thing that is hardest for me in tanking is not knowing when to swap agro with another tank.  Or the fight mechanics.  I still feel like I'm running headlong into stuff and swiping everything.  Not very clever.  It will only come to me with practice, but I'm still too anxious to practice.  One thing I think that would help me transition better is to remove the healbot window from my screen.  When I see my health going low, it's an automatic reflex to go to my name and click on it to cast a heal on it.  BAD.  VERY BAD.  Doing that of course pops me OUT of bear form, casts a piss weak rejuvenate on myself and then I get smacked very hard by something which makes my health go even lower.  Ouch.

But, I thought about level 90 arena.  I'll definitely be healing there.  So at least I will still have my hand in for healing as well for tanking.

I think I might just adopt Shelly of Bravetank's motto - A tank that prefers to heal.  I know about Bravetank - I've visited her blog a few times.  But she was on Girls gone WoW recently - brought to my attention by Zwingli who thought she had the most awesome accent.  So of course, I had to go listen to her talking and yes, she does have an awesome Irish accent.  LOL, all the girls from Girls gone WoW have awesome accents!

OK, so to face my fear, I am going to tank a dungeon this week when I'm online.  I'm going to queue for randoms.  But I'm not going to do it alone.  I'll have to take someone to hold my hand.  Someone I know.  Preferably someone who can heal.  I'm not THAT brave.

Comments

  1. I'll heal ya any time I'm on. Just hit me up. If you can't find my email address, we'll figure something out for.X-realm stuff. I love healing tanks that are learning.

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    1. Thank you hyperious! I may take you up on that.

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  2. I'd totally go with you, but I'm so out of date healing... I'm probably not the person you want at your back! LOL.

    I made the DPS to tank transition about two years ago, and at first, it is kinda weird. The hardest part for me to learn was, as my mentor at the time put it, 'you can't fix stupid.' (You're a healer - this should sound familiar! :D) Basically if people are determined to be dumbasses, you can't save them from themselves.

    Past that, a lot of learning how to do mechanics, when to swap, etc. just requires time and experience, same as anything else. Eventually you'll have it down pat. I promise it's not as hard as it looks! (That's the dirty little secret to tanking: many encounters are much easier to tank than anything else...)

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    1. "I'd totally go with you, but I'm so out of date healing... I'm probably not the person you want at your back."

      Well, that and we're not real ID friends. That helps. ;) And I'm pretty sure you're on when I'm logging off, based on location alone.

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    2. That sentiment is so awesome Stoppableforce, and the advice so genuine and encouraging that I feel like I should Navispam you. Watch out!

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  3. I think taking someone to hold your hand/fight off the gremlins is the best idea. I started by tanking lower level stuff so I could solo it and practise my rotation and then moved onto practising on real people when I felt semi confident that I wouldn't do anything too silly. Although when I think of some of the things I've seen other tanks do.. I'm not sure why the idea of screwing up bothered me.

    Slightly off-topic, a discussion about Brave (the movie) almost started a riot at my soon to be old job. So glad that my last day is soon.

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    1. O.o now that last bit makes me really curious...

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  4. I know, I thought everyone's accent on that podcast was wonderful. Shelly's is a Welsh accent though. I'm sure you'll do great once you get the hang of being a big (bear) butt!

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  5. I feel the exact opposite about healing; I would rather tank than heal if I could, lol. Tanking just takes some practice and learning your spells and rotations, while swapping takes some coordination and communication with your co-tank. I still use Healbot when I tank, it allows me to quickly throw a Righteous Defense on someone that's getting beat down or a Hand of Salvation if someone's aggro is getting too high. Let me know if you need a healer to run with, I'd gladly bring one of my Tauren Twins (shaman or druid) to keep your beary-ass up, lol.

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    1. Lol how about we tank something together so you cabin show me the ropes?

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  6. Aww I am sure you will be great at tanking, Navi! :)

    I agree with Erinys about trying out lower level stuff to practice the rotation and get a hang of CDs, etc. As for having Healbot out, I still keep my Grid+Clique bars out when I tank on my paladin since you can bind tanking stuff to use there, too! (It's been a while since I used Healbot...but I remember being able to set some tanking CDs as clicks there besides heals. Maybe stuff like Frenzied Regen, Survival Instincts, or Barkskin?)

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    1. That sounded awesome when I first read that ninevi and then I thought if I do that might forget what the real binds were and forget how to heal... I r not very smart

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  7. My offspec ended up being tank, simply through guild necessity. The one thing I found that was quite surprising to me: raid bosses are waaaaay easier to tank than heroics or even raid trash. The most trouble I have had tanking in raids has been things that require positioning and/or precise kiting (eg. Halion or LK). Tank swapping gets easy very quickly once you know the trigger, and after a while you get a sense of when you need your threat or survival CDs.

    The thing that you need to keep in mind though is that tanking heroics is completely different to tanking raids (at least imo, as a bear). Heroics will definitely get you learning where your taunt(s) and your survival CDs are, and your ability to monitor the threat level of your dps minions, very quickly! But in terms of raid tanking it feels like a different skill set is emphasised.

    Put it this way: if you can successfully tank pug heroics, then you should find raid tanking quite easy to step into!

    -Dahakha

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    1. Thanks for the advice Dahakha :-) one of my guildies told me that thanking isn't hard. I asked him why do tanks get burnout then? He said because it's BORING!

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    2. Hehe that can be true. You know the tanks who have mastered it because they know EXACTLY what everyone else in the raid is doing!

      -Dah

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  8. I am so there with you...when I get home later this inspired a post I was thinking about

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  9. Aww thank you for being nice about my accent :) I'm quite flattered you thought it was Irish - they have such a lovely soft accent. I was really concerned nobody would understand me - and my nerves made it worse! Wish I could offer more advice on tanking than being like me - a tank who heals. In fact I'm often not even that - I'm a tank who mostly does dps!! But I agree with everyone that if you can take some supportive people with you & feel ok about trying & even failing then that's the way to go. Unfortunately you are not going to get that in LFD. Wish we could though. Good luck.

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