Friday, January 4, 2008

Tanking: Having Confidence & Right Attitude

Tanking is a real visible task or job depending how you look at it, but many people who tank or new to tanking lack allot of Self Confidence in themselves. Some players who Tank are intimidated by the four other people in 5 man Instance who watch them do the dance of trying to dish out pain on a mob or a boss. For others they are intimidated by their peers in their raid group or fellow guildies. From whatever angle you may look at it some players that perform the role of a Tank in a group whether its a Druid, Warrior, Paladin (Tankadin) lack the confidence in themselves to do their job.

Sometimes it can be due to lack of Tanking Experience or new to the Instance. In others they may just not have the right Skill and Attitude. Then they are those players that just plain suck at Tanking period! Not everyone is cut out to effectively perform the role of a Tank. I kinda think their are two kinds of Tanks in my opinion. Their are those who play a tank for whatever reason and their are those that are dedicated to Tanking and work at it to become as good as they can be. As a result you can have different attitudes while tanking for a group. You can be nervous yes, but you should not feel intimidated to perform infront of your group or guildies on a instance run. If anything those people there with you should also be supporting your and rooting for you so their ass don't get hit behind you. My first lvl 70 instance was Shattered Halls. Was I nervous of course, but i was confident in self though in knowing what to do as best as I could. I did let group know hey its my first time here and a bit nervous! But after i got the swing of things all that went away. Rest was just reacting to what happened and I did fine on my first SH run. Yet in time with experience came greater confidence and a bolder attitude.

With experience in anything comes confidence in your ability whatever it may be. Good tanks know their gear, know their skill or what they can handle. Sometimes you test your self to see how much you can handle to now your limits with a group and a good healer to support. They know how they are going to take down the mob and what they going to do. The know how they are going to do their dance before they even get there. A lot of that is having confidence in your ability. You can't control the things you can't control, but you can control how you react in a given situation when something unexpected happens or a pull goes not as expected. You should never panic as a Tank, if you do others will just as well. Never Panic! You can't be thinking about what the other people in your group thinks or thinking your going to fail. Anyone wanting you to fail don't belong in the same group with you. You have to have confidence with a group behind you that you know just what your doing on selecting a target, which target you decide to kill first or CC if need to while knowing how your going to tank the boss in a 5 man instance. In a raid its more people and things are more coordinated for the purpose of a raid.

So you have to have the idea and confidence in you as a Tank that when your at the boss that I'm going to break both his knee caps, I'm going to smash um and I'm here to deliver to you Mr Big Boss a open can of Whoop Ass! That's the kind of attitude you need to have. Have confidence in self knowing the limits of your gear and skill that you can do what your there to do and not feel embarrassed if you make a mistake or be worried about what other people think of you while your doing your job. Just do your job and do it well, that's all you can do. Everyone at times makes mistakes and will make them again, that's human nature though you try to minimize it. I once almost pulled the entire middle of SL in room going to BlackHeart. Instead of a Exorcism on the multi handed lady mob I accidentally hit AV shield and it bounced. Its was indeed oh shit but I didn't panic but the group almost shit their pants. I held my ground and tanked um all. If I was going to die as long as my healer did not let me die I was going to die on my own feel and kill them all before they killed me. That's Confidence and Attitude.

Confidence is Attitude which comes from experience and having the right attitude is very important in doing your job as a Tank. I myself have a long way to go to still tank many things in the game, but I have confidence even though I'm sure I will make mistakes along the way. Tanking is a lonely Job! Its often just you and the boss up close often trash talking each other with most people at some distance away. You have to have confidence in your Healers that they are not asleep at the wheel and that the DPS will do their job while your doing your to the best of your ability. Your job is not to worry about what other people think of your while doing your job, deal with that later after the run. If your doing everything your can do at the best of your ability and skill that's all you can do and that's about all anyone else can ask. But walking into a instance and thinking to your self that you suck and saying to your group/guildies that you suck is the wrong attitude to be having. I wouldn't want to be in any group with a tank that think and says he sucks. That's acknowledging defeat before you even try while doubting your ability.

If you lack confidence that bad you may need to seriously consider playing something else besides a tank and doing tanking duties. Tanks are often leaders in groups and who wants to follow a tank that sucks or one with no confidence, as a matter of fact who wants to group with such a person anyway. Players want to have fun and they like a confident tank that acts and perform confidently. You don't need to be a arrogant tank or have a arrogant elitist attitude. You just need to have the right attitude that you know what your doing and confident in doing it and that you can handle the situation with a group. You also need to show it.

As a Tank you cant be afraid to fail. So many people seem to be afraid to fail or even try. People often hate PuG's and decide well its a 5 man PuG Instance run and I'm not going to try because the PuG may suck. Yeah maybe, but good players are in PuG's too. The People in your guild were often found in PuGs. You just never tell the ones in your guild that they suck when you know they may. So what. You cant be afraid to fail tanking in a PuG. If it goes bad it goes bad, maybe you learn something while at it. When you have confidence in your self as a Tank, running a PuG for a 5 man is no big deal. You have to think that your there to kick some ass in a instance and your gonna kick ass before it kicks yours. Its OK to be nervous but you can get over that easily after you smashed a few mobs and cracked some skulls and have them smell the ground. If the tank don't have confidence its hard for anyone else to have it.

Experience running instances over and over to develop skill in self and in group develops confidence over time. The attitude is something you have to have or develop over time while having the confidence in your self, your group and healer. Attitude is something you develop from within and no one can teach a Tank how to have that. But when tanking tank with confidence and a big bold attitude that's your there to put a royal smackdown on the boss and your not going to be intimidated. Don't worry about what your group think while your doing your dance of pain in front of the mob or boss. You may fail, but kick some ass before you get your ass kicked if you do.


Luciel said...

I agree with this whole commentary. I've been tanking with my Paladin, SV, SL, SH and putting your best foot forward and feeling and acting like you can take whatever comes your way is HIGHLY improtant if you want people to take you as more as just some schlub who rolled a tank.

Sound advice Galo.

Anonymous said...

really good words Galo. I have started tanking Heroics and it is the confidence that really lets you do the job.

Sevec said...

Great post.

I’m a raid tank now, but 5-mans are where I have the most fun – partly because I have so much control over the flow of the fight. Occasionally it feels like the other four characters are extensions of mine - doing my will.

When I make a mistake in a raid and it means a wipe I will sometimes stew about it. The best remedy for me is to stay up for another hour after the raid is finished and tank a heroic. It makes me feel powerful and restores my confidence.

Not everyone plays this game for a feeling of power, but I do.

Galoheart said...

Glad you all liked the post and found it favorable in relation to tanking. Makes the effort to write that post worthwhile as they are never easy or by no means quick to write at all.

Thanks for the feedback.