Druid Tanks work in a very similar way to Warrior tanks. When in Bear Form you will have a Rage bar that builds up rage during combat. Many of your abilities require rage t0 be used so it’s important you can build up rage quickly at the start of the encounter. If you struggle to generate rage at the beginning of an encounter there are a few things you can do to help:
- Use a [Great rage Potion] on the pull to instantly acquire rage.
- If there are lesser mobs before your main group pull use them to generate a small amount of rage before you pull by attacking them just before you pull.
- Use [Enrage] to generate instant rage on the pull. Only do this if you know for sure you can handle the extra damage from the group you are pulling as it increases your damage taken by 10%.
Why should I be in Bear Form?
Bear form not only allows you to use many of your tank specific abilities but it also provides you with a whole lot more benefits which make bear form absolutely essential for tanking. [Bear form] provides 10% extra stamina, 120% extra armor contribution from gear, causes Agility to provide you with Attack Power (generating much more threat), prevents you from being Polymorphed and therefore losing your adds and finally increases your threat generation significantly overall. A tank should never be out of Bear Form during an encounter with only two specific exceptions:
- You are not currently tanking anything (and do not need to currently tank anything) and someone needs a battle res (preferrably someone important only such as a healer or another tank) and you have no other methods of ressing the player.
- You are not currently tanking anything (and do not need to currently tank anything) and someone needs an Innervate (preferably only for a healer).
Removing Bear Form in any other situation is highly reckless and can result in you getting flattened and wiping your group.
Druid Bear Rotation for Single Targets
- Use Mangle as soon as you have enough rage. Keep using it whenever it cools down.
- Keep demoralizing roar up on your target.
- Keep Faerie Fire up on your target at 3 stacks unless someone else in your raid is doing this for you.
- Lacerate to 3 stacks.
- Dump excess rage by using Maul.
- If lacerate is at 3 stacks, debuffs are refreshed and mangle is unavailable, pulverise and re-apply lacerate to 3 stacks.
Druid Bear Rotation for Multiple Targets
- Use Mangle on your primary target as soon as you have enough rage.
- Use Swipe and Thrash on every cool down as soon as they become available.
- Use Demoralizing Roar and keep it up throughout the encounter.
- Start tab selecting through each mob and apply Lacerate and mangle as much much as possible in between using swipe and thrash.
- Dump excess rage using Maul.
Why use Demoralizing Roar?
[Demoralizing Roar] is one of the most important aspects of your rotation and must be kept up at all times on both single and multiple target rotations. This ability reduces your incoming damage and if kept up at all time will basically mean you take 10% less damage overall constantly. Unlike other tanking cool down abilities that reduce damage, this one can be used at all times and will make healing you significantly easier. This is even more important considering the stage of the expansion we are currently in as gear means balancing mitigation and avoidance are a top priority for all tanks.
Why Apply Lacerate to other Mobs?
Using Swipe and Thrash on their own to hold threat on multiple mobs will nine times out of ten prove unsuccessful, particularly with over geared DPS players in your group or raid. Use mangle on your primary target (Skull) to ensure you keep threat but in the meantime while the DPS are nuking skull, it’s important to start building as much threat as possible on the other mobs ready for when the skull dies. This will prevent DPS from pulling mobs from you as soon as skull dies or as soon as they open up with AoE abilities. If you use Lacerate on each mob in the encounter in between using Mangles, Swipes and Thrashes you will get a very strong threat build up and 98% of DPS players will not be able to pull anything from you regardless of which creature they attack next.
Movement and Threat
Sometimes a particular boss or encounter will force you to move your tank and your targets constantly. Minor movements out of painful AoE’s are usually easy to handle but constant kiting (such as Throngus with his mace equipped in Grim Batol) can cause you to have threat problems as most of your abilities are short range. To help avoid this, make sure the target has a full 3 stacks of lacerate on them as well as 3 stacks of feral faerie fire, these will continue to tick and give you threat even when you are not close by to the target. Taunt the boss if you lose control and take a moment to stack up your abilities again before you continue kiting or you will only end up losing aggro almost immediately after your taunt.
Reduce your Damage During Movement
To prevent taking unnecessary damage while moving invest in a movement speed enchant on your boots. This will help you quickly get to your new location. In addition to this try not to turn your back to enemy creatures as you will take much more damage if they are behind you at any point. Try walking backwards to keep your targets in front of you and move out of harmful effects. If you are taking excessive damage try using your damage reduction abilities such as Barkskin, Frenzied regeneration and any Trinkets you may have. If you see a healing circle on the ground move into it and make sure the melee DPS can also stand in it when stood behind your target.
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