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Warrior Tanking - Builds Macros And General Tips

By: Archy

So I’ve heard some people wanting to try their hand at tanking. Most are worried that it will be difficult and that a lot rests on your shoulders. But when you get it right, you will be rewarded (I think) more than any other class. Being a tank means you’re always active, aware and pretty much calling the shots. Hopefully I’ll be able to share some of the things that I’ve learnt with Warrior tanking. First up, builds and macros.

Physical Damage Instance Tanking (Easiest to use, good for 5 mans, and even solo questing)
12 Reaver – 32 Paladin – 22 Warlord

Magic Damage Instance Tanking
18 Reaver – 26 Void Knight – 22 Paladin
I’ve only found 2 good places so far that this build is good for, but it does help a ton in these fights.
2nd boss in Deepstrike Mines does a ton of magic damage. This will help A LOT with healing.
4th boss in Runic Descent who has Glacial Shield that needs to be purged. You can now purge it with Soul Sunder.

Raid Tanking (slightly more difficult to use, better with greater numbers in the group)
12 Reaver – 33 Warlord – 21 Paladin

Single Target Builder Spam
#show Aggressive Block suppressmacrofailures
cast Disarming Counterblow
cast Retaliation
cast Aggressive Block
cast Sweeping Strike
cast Reckless Strike
cast Pin Target
cast Pacifying Strike

Single Target Finisher
See “Using Abilities” below

AOE Attack
#show Paladin's Reprisal
cast Paladin's Reprisal
cast Disarming Counterblow
cast Retaliation
cast Aggressive Block
cast Inescapable Fury
cast Sweeping Strike
cast Promise of Steel
cast Slashing Strike
cast Vicious Cleave
cast Mighty Blow
cast Light's Decree

AOE Finisher
Scales of Justice

Single Target Taunt
#show Sergeant's Order
cast Sergeant's Order
cast Shield Throw
cast Spark
cast Shield Throw
cast Grim Lure

AOE Taunt
#show Judgment
cast Judgment
cast Airburst
cast Concussion
cast Cracking Skulls

#show Shield Charge
cast Shield Charge
cast Bull Rush

#show Face Slam
cast Flinching Strike
cast Face Slam
cast Bash
cast Furious Rage

Ranged Dots
#show Plague Bringer
cast Plague Bringer
cast Soul Sickness
cast Necrotic Wounds

As usual, my macros contain a crap ton of stuff so that they can be used across multiple builds without having to switch / rewrite them all the time. These macros should be good for any form of defensive pally spec you make.

I would suggest trying to tank with the First build I listed (physical damage reduction) as this is how I learnt and I think is the more user friendly of the three.

Pulling mobs:
Don’t charge into a pack of mobs and then cast your AOE Taunt. First of all, you have to wait for the global cooldown before you get to taunt, by which time the mobs could be most of the way towards your healer. Secondly, the taunt will only make them stay on you for 3 seconds. What you want to do is pull the centre one with Light’s Decree, or if you don’t have that yet, go with spamming your Reaver Dot macro until you’ve casted Plague Bringer, Soul Sickness and Necrotic Wounds. These two dots ticking on 5 mobs while they’re running toward you, should allow you to keep enough threat on them until you start attacking.

Watch for ranged / caster mobs as obviously they won’t come to you. If it’s a single one, you can pull them into the main pack with your Single Target Taunt macro (this will fire Sergeant’s Order) bringing that one to you. If there’s more than one, it’s advisable to try and line of sight them so they all stack up nicely on you.

You want to stack them up so you can AOE them more easily and so the DPS can AOE more mobs. It can be difficult to maintain agro on a mob that you can’t hit. It can be done, but you’re best to avoid it.

Save your AOE taunt macro for emergencies. Even more applicable they’re on a shared 1 minute cooldown since the patch. Should only be used if you have a few mobs running away from you OR it’s difficult to click or tab to the target you want to taunt. Even still, if one is running away from you, I’d advise trying to get off a Reaver Dot macro x3 (even though it does cost quite a substantial amount of power).

Take the time to watch the pathing of mobs if you’re unsure about whether to pull or not. You have to be very careful with your pulls and who you choose to target with that AOE Dot you’re about to cast. Better to take a little longer and live, than to wipe the group.

Don’t stand in fire (sorry it had to be said :p)
Face the mobs away from the rest of your group where you can.
Have your back to a wall where you can, exposing the behinds of the mobs so that your dps can have a better position. When your back is up against a wall, it can help to rotate your camera around 180 degrees (but you still face the same way). This will help with actually seeing what’s going on.

Using Abilities:
For your single target finisher, you generally have three choices (many more in the raid tank spec, but I won’t go into that yet).

Call To Entrench should be used pretty much whenever it’s up, unless you know you’re pretty safe.
Spotter’s Order should be used if everyone’s pretty healed up and you need some extra DPS or if you’re about to take damage.
Dire Blow can be used if you just wanna DPS the crap out of it…. Well as much as a defensive tank can.

Empowering Strike should be used when it’s up as well as it provides you with extra armor. Watch your buff bars for its timer, as spamming it is a waste.

Leader’s Mark should be used on single target to help others with their DPS.

Touch of Life (full heal) should be given a hotkey that’s really easy to press. You’re gonna need it readily available in emergencies.

Intercept can be good when someone is regularly pulling healing agro, or DPS agro. You can cast it on them at the start of the pull, and this way, you get all of their agro.

You will have many buffs to put on yourself and the group as a defensive tank. Make sure you have them all.

Planar Items
You want to keep the purple ones (e.g. Soul Shard) and the green ones (e.g. Revitalising Seed) as these are both good for tanking.

Other Info
When instancing, it’s much better to convert it to a raid. This is mainly because you can see who has agro by a red outline around their name. The raid frames do lag a bit(1-3 seconds) so keep that in mind as well.
Will probably add more here once I remember more stuff, including a guide to gearing your tank once I write it.

But most of all, try to relax. As is always mentioned, it’s about having fun. If tanking is too stressful, just don’t do it. I think we’ve got a good bunch of people here that aren’t going to bite your head off if you stuff up. I really enjoy helping people out so if you ever have any questions, I’m always happy to answer. If you’re in an instance and you’re not sure of a good way to do a boss, grab me and I can explain. Only problem is, I’m from the other side of the world in Australia, so our times may not match up so great 

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