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What I wish people knew about warden tanking

by Bid on Nov 05, 2019 at 02:41 PM}
While the guardian class does not seem to be very popular in our little kin, I recognize the horror of certain other classes tanking, as well as the opportunity to try something new, uncomfortable and rather hazardous.

A mix of hard truth and soft yest, so please don't take this very seriously.

Harmful tanking
Wardens can't -not- harm things. We may focus on generating aggro, building up defenses, self healing, looking pretty, but all the while we always harm things. This means in order to be a convincing tank a warden can't avoid hurting things. If you want us to tank something without damaging it, don't expect us to do very well.

This provides some good fun and great challenge when tanking around mesmerized targets and
you can count on the warden tank to pull the rest away from them so they can begin to generate any meaningful aggro, and so we can all AOE til the eagles come or mobs run out, whichever comes first.

Rationed tanking
Warden tanking is incredibly effective. 20 seconds into the fight everyone in the room will want a piece. Getting there can be a bumpy road.

This is because wardens generate most of their aggro by far over time. A distinct advantage is that it still works even out of range. This may manifest into some arguably exciting times when a mob runs to a healer at the other side of the room, out of the sight and mind of the tanking warden, and still finds his way back to them for seconds.

Riskful tanking
Wardens buff their defenses and self heal at the same time, thus wardens are happiest when their morale is between 80 and 50%.

If our morale rarely drops, especially at the start of the combat, it probably means the healer is at a great risk of drawing unwanted attention to themselves. Not to worry though. This has a tendency of fixing itself as the healer will get interrupted by said attention, take damage and ending up healing themselves instead.

Sadly DPS and others often rush to help them and ruin it for everyone.

Lazy tanking
This bit may not apply to every warden, but it very applies to mine. While they make the best effort to pull mobs from healers, they will make very little to pull mobs from DPS.

If DPS pulls a mob, I always assume they wanted to do that. That's okay with me and it seems only polite to oblige. If the aggro is building up on the mob they might very well turn back. You can see this, sometimes, mob running back and forth, when the warden aggro over time ticks, and DPS does more damage. It is not the warden doing that, this is very much automated.

We really don't care! We're certainly not wasting our precious two forced aggro skills! So good luck!

---

Lastly, I have to say, I am so sorry and I feel with each and every one of you, for the many runs that you have suffered this awkward warden tanking, and the many that you yet will!

Cheers!
Comments

7 Comments

Fideliss
I know you wrote that we aren't to take this too seriously but, as a non-elite player with limited alts, this is an absolute eye opener and explains so many things.
I have never played a warden and as DPS I was always told to count to 5 before doing anything if one tanks....thats it...the total sum of what I know about grouping with a warden tank.
So thank you very much for this....your jokey bits made it very palatable and easy to understand.
If this was Google then you would be awarded ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐.
Narv
lol I wish you'd said these things earlier. I don't know the first thing about warden as it's too complicated for me. Does this mean stacking HoTs pre-fight annoys you? And, if I understand this correctly, I should wait with heals until you're about 50%? Sorry, you asked for it. Now the questions are inevitable. :)
Bid
@Narv Stacking hots doesn't annoy me at all. And I have much respect for healers, I know it's a lot of work, and I am not trying to make healing "too much" a thing. You're the beating heart of the group. A tank is basically just a greedy DPS that gets express healing. d:

From my limited experience I know as RK you need to start healing early, to heal effectively. I guess RKs building up heals is similar to how wardens build up aggro. I think it actually works out, even if it might not be by design. But who knows.

I'm really enjoying the lotro combat mechanics, both solo and also class interaction in groups. I'm not looking for best performance but for most fun. So this is the spirit of this journal entry, not an arrogant and selfish warden telling everyone how to play. (:
Bid
@Fideliss I also wait a bit when someone else is tanking, warden or other. I ask why make it easier on mobs and allow them to spread out on us. But to me it goes a little beyond that.

Tank engages the enemies, taunting them. A healer subtly supporting the tank, unbeknownst to the them. Everyone else hiding in the bushes, waiting. Then suddenly rain of arrows, followed by hail of swords and fire everywhere, enemies defenseless in the surprise. The perfect ambush!

Got carried away a bit. d:
Boarcas
Whats the way a dps should target mobs here? what should i do if i , as a champion pull mobs of your warden without intention?
McDoomy
Very nice article 👌

As stated best is to wait with dps a bit, but also important is not to start with your biggest dps skills. Give us some time :)
If you do get aggro from a mob and can't kill/handle it, just bring it back to the warden, so he/she does not have to run after mobs (yeah were lazy too, at least i am 😄)
Bid
@Baor As a champion and melee dps, if you aggro something that just means you're getting hit and tank is not. Also this means the tank is attacking the back of the enemy, and thus bypassing block and parry! So win-win! d:

From the little I know about guardians, they benefit well from getting attacked - for their block and parry responses. Warden tanks benefit somewhat from evading but it isn't a huge deal and there's a cool down on the effect so in practice there tends to be more evade than we can use.
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