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Shadows/Assassin Tank's Looking for an opinion on gearing for HM TFB..

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes
Shadows/Assassin Tank's Looking for an opinion on gearing for HM TFB..

wetslampigduex's Avatar

10.26.2012 , 07:55 AM | #1
So my guild has been dead for a few months and I am now running TFB HM with a guild we used to do NP w/ b/c they have also lost people. Now I have 2 very geared Tank's 1 Powertech in full campaign and 1 Assassin and have done a good amount of research in to gearing them as of right now im dpsing for these guys. So anyways the question I;m looking for an answer to is what sense would it make to gear an Assassin tank with pretty much only shield and absorb. I'm not sure what this particular tank's shield and absorb are but i am aware he only has a 15% Defense chance. Is gearing this way something a lot of assassin's are doing? Does this work? Is there anyone out there clearing TFM HM with a tank geared similar to this? Also, to the Sin/Shadow tank's out there that have cleared TFB what does you gear look like? My sin who still isnt full 61 missing like 2 armorings and MH stats are sitting @ 28% defense 64% shield w/ Dark Ward and a 63% absorb. The tank i am running with is getting absolutely smashed by the tentacle in the first phase of the TFB fight to the point where if there is any extra dmg to the raid or if the healer on that side is pulled by the portal that he cant catch up. I brought the gearing issue(what i see it as) to the healer on his side who is there GM and pointed out the issue's i read about in another thread(one about DW not being up for a ot of this phase) and how i think his low D chance is probably the reason for the amount of DMG going out and was pretty much blown off and told "yeah he stack shield and absorb". It just doesn't make any sense to me b/c ive tanked this a few times on sm with my both tanks and looked into my logs to see much to my suprise my lesser geared Assissin was taking much less dmg than my PT, but the PT co-tank last night wasn't taking sh*t for dmg compared to the sin.

If anyone can make sense of this rant and offer a few pointer i would greatly appreciate it, thank you.

Satedbuffalo's Avatar

10.26.2012 , 08:47 AM | #2
Low (15-20%) defense is a viable strategy for end-game gearing of both Assassin/Shadows and Powertech/Vanguards. For PTs, it's almost necessary, as shield procs aid heat management, increase dps, etc. Shadows have similar mechanisms. Consider some of the tanking spreadsheets floating around if you're interested in the theory-crafting, rather than just assurance that this works.

I suspect you're seeing large damage received differences between two tanks in the same raid based on role and tanking style. (For example, consider the differential damage of, say, a tank starting on Zorn or Stormcaller in Denova compared to his counterpart.) That said, some tank classes are designed to take more absolute damage because they make up for it with self-heals (assassins/shadows), or because their damage profiles are smoother (i.e., few to no spikes, just constant reasonable damage, e.g. PTs).
Just some jerk who isn't good enough for rated.

KeyboardNinja's Avatar

10.26.2012 , 09:28 AM | #3
I'm actually going to contradict the previous poster: low defense chance is a bad idea for assassin tanks. The assassin force management procs are from both shield and defense, so there is no incentive from that to stack one over the other. The ideal ratio for an assassin in augmented and min-maxed Campaign gear, buffed and stimmed, is somewhere around 28% defense, 65% shield (with Dark Ward), 58% absorb, and around 26.5k HP. By using the War Hero relics, you can get a slightly higher stat budget and inflate your defensive stats, but your net survivability will actually drop.

I've cleared TFB HM as a shadow tank, and my gear looks like this:

The tentacle phase *is* annoying, no question about that. I generally follow a strict priority queue on my cooldowns. It goes something like this:
  • If tentacle is about to Slam and I am below 50% HP, pop Dark Shroud
  • If I am below 20% HP, pop Deflection
  • If I am below 70% HP and my healer is below 30% mana, pop Overcharge Saber (or if I just feel like it)
  • If I am below 60%, my healer is below 30% mana and I'm out of cooldowns, pop adrenal
  • If I am below 40%, my healer is below 30% mana and I'm out of cooldowns, pop medpac

The important one is the first. Slam will hit you for about 8k. This is an attack that happens frequently, and if it happens following a hypergate on the healer, it *can* be disastrous. Fortunately, it's a reasonably easy attack to predict as long as you have good reflexes. Watch the tentacle closely. Its "pecking" attack is a short, quick movement. When it is milliseconds from slamming you, it will straighten out a bit and (fairly) slowly swing toward the ground. This gives you about a 220 ms window in which to pop Dark Shroud, which will completely negate the damage. You should be able to do this twice per tentacle.

The downside is then you won't have Dark Shroud up to deal with errant larva, so you will need to really rely on your DPS to take care of the adds in a timely manner.

It is worth noting that Assassin tanks will always have a substantially higher "Damage Taken" number than an equivalently-geared PowerTech. The reason for this is that you have a self-heal! Your self-heal is a massive, massive component of your survivability. Use and abuse it. The tentacle phase is actually really good for this due to the frequent small melee attacks. You can go into a Thrash-heavy rotation and use the Energize proc to get Shock more frequently than its standard cooldown. This in turn allows you to proc Harnessed Darkness at an insane rate, dramatically increasing your self-heal (I go up to nearly 200 HPS in that phase of the fight, which is a 30% boost). Your healers just need to be aware of the fact that you're going to heal back a certain amount of the damage. Ideally, they wouldn't fuss over topping you off all the time, instead just leaving you around 80-85% HP.

Overall, gearing for TFB HM as an assassin tank is not (very) dissimilar from gearing for any other op. You should be a just a hair more endurance heavy for TFB than for EC, as a much higher percentage of the damage bypasses defensive stats, but only a hair. I would say that the ratio advice I gave at the top of the post is about right.
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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)

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wetslampigduex's Avatar

10.26.2012 , 11:17 AM | #4
Thank you Ninja for confirming most of what i already knew, Just wanted to be sure of myself before speaking up on this "issue" anymore.

sankalp's Avatar

10.29.2012 , 10:46 PM | #5
I have cleared HM TFB as a sin tank and I can give you what stats distribution I have used

I have with DW

27.x% def
68.x% shield
63.x% absorb

I think My stimmed HP is 24.5k

We pretty much one shotted every boss last week. I run with a Jugg tank and it is debatable as to who is MT and who is OT. I had no issues with any of the bosses except maybe phase 1 tfb as DW eroded much quicker due to slam being 5 hits rather than 1, but it was not a big deal.

I think 15% def for a sin tank would be too low. I get the theory behind it, but at 63% absorb I am already pushing DR for absorb and If i stack more, the per point increase it gives me is quite low compared to def.

My theory has been to get absorb to where it is atm, and then stack anything else in def as the 2 are interchangeable.

I also run with 1 def and 1 shield WH relic, but might try 2 shield at some point. With fully optimised dreadguard gear, I plan on taking absorb to 65% and dumb everything else into def where shield>def>end

unfortunately, the insane itemization in dread guard gear makes it impossible as no robust 27B mods have been found at least on my server. Till i get them, I am going to continue with my current build as it is sufficient for TFB HM and should be sufficient for NiM EC