Even with the upcoming changes to Swipe, I still believe that bears are way too weak at low levels. Their passive and active defenses are frighteningly low, and they have very few tools to do the job until later in the game. In this post I will compare the rate druids learn tanking skills to the rate other tanks learn them, and show exactly where low level druids fall behind.
Quite a few people have asked me about this, so maybe the world needs to know!
Here’s the TL;DR:
- Bears will be have comparable AoE mitigation to other tanks.
- Bear damage has been increased, as well as AoE threat, but single target threat remains the same.
- Bears get a few quality of life changes and should probably take a look at their spec.
Do you ever feel bad for the bosses you ruthlessly slaughter each and every week? I started thinking about this while we were waiting to pull Atramedes. This blind dragon has quite a history. In case you haven’t seen his introduction, here’s a youtube video and a transcript:
Today I’m going to look at tanking cooldowns. This is not supposed to be an argument over who has the best cooldowns or who is overpowered or blah blah blah. This is a learning exercise so that everyone can better understand their tanking teams. Remember that cooldowns are not balanced in a vacuum; Blizzard takes everything into account when they balance tanks, not just your damage reduction cooldowns.
All pictures are from Wowhead.
In this video and our first kill, I was brought as cat dps. My kitty gear is primarily bear gear, so my dps was pretty low. The fact that I was in on our first kill should indicate that this is not a dps fight; it’s a control fight.
Sometimes I really wonder why I play a bear.
Bears are pretty special. They’re so different than the shield tanks that it’s hard to understand just how special. Here’s my list of things other people should know about bears so that they will know how to use them well or help their raid’s bears improve. This list gets more and more detailed and complicated the further you read, so if you feel like you understand “enough”, you don’t need to read the whole thing.
I’ve personally melee dps’d and tanked Onyxia (phase 1) and Nefarian (phase 3) in this fight. Heroic Nefarian is more difficult than Heroic Valiona and Theralion, but easier than Heroic Cho’gall. We used 3 tanks for this fight.
Here are the things I’ve learned from this fight.
I got the music working for my recent Heroic Magmaw 25 video, and I’m so happy about it that it will be my first post.