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KeyboardNinja
11.25.2012 , 11:50 AM | #7
Shadows/assassins have always been under powered while leveling. The rebalancing in 1.3 had really no effect on that. The only important thing really is how classes are balanced at 50. Despite what most people claim, assassin tanks are just fine at 50. I think the OP put it best: there are only two types of assassin tanks, the amazing and the terrible.

The best advice I can give has already been given: learn to abuse your cool downs. This means learning fight mechanics and damage types intimately. During progression, I will often parse my logs mid-raid just to find attack types for particular abilities. Know swing timers, and be proactive about popping the appropriate cooldown (and only the appropriate cooldown) to handle burst moments (eg Toth's smash ability). Know when to use Dark Ward and when to leave it alone (similarly for Discharge). Use pull prolifically, and don't be afraid to creatively apply lesser skills like Whirlwind and Overload. (The best assassin tank I've ever seen uses Overload non-stop for mob repositioning)

On a more prosaic note, know your priority queue cold and execute it flawlessly. Your active self heal (Force Lightning) is a huge component of your mitigation. Maximize its value. Be careful with Force management and apply your buffs appropriately. Use and abuse taunts following high-threat abilities if you're tanking against rabid DPS and aren't confident in your ability to stay ahead of their threat.

Overall, I would say that the most important component of good assassin tanking is simply having a head on your shoulders. Take an active interest in improving. Study fights before/after raids to understand what damage you're dealing with and what sort of timing it has. Learn to judge your own performance in combat logs and always try to improve. Assassins have a very high skill ceiling, and you can almost always do better than you did last time.

Good luck!
Computer Programmer. Theory Crafter. Dilettante on The Ebon Hawk.
Tam (shadow tank) Tov-ren (commando healer) Aveo (retired sentinel) Nimri (ruffian scoundrel)
Averith (marksman sniper) Alish (lightning sorcerer) Aresham (vengeance jugg) Effek (pyro pt)