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What is the most usefull tank?

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes
What is the most usefull tank?

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Nortumberland
11.18.2012 , 11:55 AM | #11
Tbh I've never had a desire to play a shadow tank I can't explain it, but it's totally not my class. As a former WoW player I really liked pally-like vanguard and warrior-like guard, though imo guardian is weaker than warr in wow. Anyway, Kitru mentioned that the gap in passive mitigation as about 1-2%. Since I completely dislike playing hybrid and being full-def I have troubles with aggro, I decided to stay on vanguard (though I'd like it to be a bit more rewarding for skilled players).

P.S. I don't want to start a new thread, but what do you, guys, think about the new relics? I intend to change the absorb proc one on my Vang, but can't understand which is better- the clicquie shi+abs one (nice additional CD for vang) or the absorb proc ( I have 60% sheild rating so my current one use to proc rather often, but I doubt it's better than the clicqie one)

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Royox
11.18.2012 , 12:07 PM | #12
Quote: Originally Posted by wingzyeah View Post
So there is no best tank for fp/wb/ops? Maybe u can describe few minuses of each tanks?

Vanguard: More HP. Heavy Armor. Less Defensive CD's. It's an "sponge tank" --> "Hit me!! I have 35k HP!"

Guardian: Less HP. Heavy Armor. Lots of defensive CD's. It's an "autobuff tank" -->This attack gives u more defense, this attack gives u a 3 seconds bubble, this attack makes ur enemy aim 5% lower.

Shadow: Less HP than Vanguard, More HP than Guardian. Light Armor (but he has a buff to have 60% more armor) . Have good Defensive CD's (more than vanguard, less than Guardian). He is the "autohealing tank"-------> "Every time I deal damage I heal myself"


I'm not 100% sure about the shadow but I remember it was like this.

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Kitru
11.18.2012 , 12:37 PM | #13
Quote: Originally Posted by RendValor View Post
General consensus would lead you to believe that Guardians are easy to play and Shadows are hard to play, when in reality (and as someone who plays both) it's the other way around
I've got no idea where you get your "general consensus" because that's pretty much the explicit opposite of everything I've experienced. I even expressly stated that Guardians are and were the most difficult to learn to play effectively in my first post of this thread. Of course, once you've learned the basics of Guardian tanking, it's not that difficult to achieve functionally optimal performance out of it. Shadows, on the other hand, require the most skill to eke every last bit out of the class as possible but have a substantially lower (compared to Guardians) skill requirement to play at a reasonable level.

The issue that many people get hung up on is that there are different types of difficulty and different parts of the class that the difficulty applies to. Shadows have amazingly simple threat generation and resource management; easily the easiest of all of the tank classes: you don't have to worry about variable resource regeneration and, if you run out of Force, you just wait a few seconds and you're back up. Guardians, for threat generation and resource management, are the exact opposite of this: their resource management is notoriously unforgiving and they have known issues with threat generation compared to the other tanks because of their resource generation problems. It takes a lot more skill to learn to generate and maintain threat on a Guardian than it does on a Shadow.

*However*, threat generation and resource management are not the only metric by which tank skill requirement is measured. Shadows have the, de facto, highest amount of skill required to remain effective and survivable tanks. After all, if you can't survive getting punched in the face, it doesn't matter how much aggro you can generate. Maintaining KW stacks, generating HS stacks, making sure you're not knocked back in the middle of a TkT channel, maintaining buffs, and proper use of CDs that are specific to attack types all combine to make Shadows the hardest tanks to play, from a survivability standpoint. Guardians simply have to use Riposte on CD (which they should be doing anyways since it's a great and cheap source of threat and damage) and Blade Storm on CD (which they should be doing since it's their hardest hitting attack, barring hybrid w/ Overhead) to maximize their survivability through playstyle. Even their CDs are simple because they are global. The only "difficulty" within their use is their 3 min CDs.

Furthermore, it takes the most skill to play a Shadow optimally as opposed to a Guardian. Once you've learned how to generate threat and maintain your resources as a Guardian, most of the work is done. As a Shadow, you have to learn more about every fight than any of the other tanks (specifically, which attacks are F/T and which are M/R, coupled with specific rates of use on them to get the most out of your various CDs, coupled with movement and KB phases where it's unwise to use TkT). Guardians and VGs really have no major issues like this, not to mention that there are all kinds of debates as to what the most effective way to play a Shadow from either a threat or survivability standpoint are whereas the proper priorities and attack strings for VGs and Guardians are well established (generally because there isn't a lot of major interaction between their attack strings and their survivability).

For threat, the simplest to most complex is definitely VG->Shadow->Guardian. For survivability, it's VG->Guardian->Shadow.

As to specific quality of tanking overall at various skill levels, a bad VG trumps either a bad Shadow or a bad Guardian (whether the bad Guardian is worse or better than the bad Shadow depends on whether you think a tank that never gets aggro but doesn't die is worse than a tank that gets aggro and almost immediately dies). At average levels of skill, all of the tanks are pretty much equal. At the absolute top tier of performance, an amazing Shadow will trump an amazing Guardian which will trump an amazing VG.

The variability in skill and skill ceiling is one of the reasons why it's so hard to decisively say which tank is "best". When pugging, the VG is going to be the safest bet, since they're so hard to screw up. This is one of the reasons why they have such an amazing reputation on most servers: since it's hard to screw up a VG tank, even a bad VG is going to finish out an instance without any major problems whereas a bad Guardian or Shadow is going to have plenty of them. Because people remember success and failure moreso than quality of job done, when people think back and don't remember having problems with VG tanks in the past (or, at the least, having as many problems as was had with the other tank ACs), they arrive at the natural heuristic that VGs are the better tanks, when, in reality, they're just so simple that they're hard to screw up. Of course, once you get to the point where you start doing Ops and tank quality becomes a more important factor in success, especially when doing progression content, the heuristic changes.

I can honestly say that I've never met a truly amazing VG, or, at the least, one that amazed me with its performance. There just isn't enough skill derived variability in its performance to allow for it. This creates a heuristic that describes VGs as functional but not substantially differentiated: a VG tank is a VG tank is a VG tank. Guardians tend to either be good or bad: the skill requirement for entry into the "decent" category is high enough that some people can't hack it, but there isn't enough variability in performance between "amazing" and "decent" to justify a separate heuristic categorization. This means, to me, that there are good Guardians and bad Guardians: good Guardians are those that can keep threat and bad Guardians are those that cannot. Shadows run the full gamut of terrible to amazing, which makes it difficult to create a decent heuristic. As such, unless I specifically know a Shadow tank, I'm very wary because I know how bad they can be, which is how most of the people I deal with operate.

In short, for pugging, which is what most people are referring to when discussing quality of the different tank classes (since, for guild content, the player is consistent and therefore more important than the class in question, especially since a player that enjoys playing their class is going to perform much better than one that dislikes their class but is playing it purely because of their group's insistence), VGs are considered the best, Guardians are somewhere in the middle, and Shadows are often feared, for the previously outlines reasons.

Of course, the lot of this depends on the individual experiences of the player in question. I've met some players that have only ever had good experiences with Shadow tanks; as such, they laud Shadow tanks because their experiences have only shown them the upper end of the Shadow quality spectrum. Of course, I've met some players wherein I've been their first and *only* good experience with a Shadow tank, such that they ask me what exactly I'm doing that no one else does.

If you're trying to figure out which tank to start leveling or which type of tank to invite to your guild for progression raiding, it's more important to find a tank that you enjoy playing (for the former) or that knows his class (for the latter). Properly played, all of the tanks are perfectly functional. Tank problems in TOR are pebkac.
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Kitru
11.18.2012 , 01:01 PM | #14
Quote: Originally Posted by Royox View Post
I'm not 100% sure about the shadow but I remember it was like this.
You're not even really correct on any of those assertions, but the Shadow is especially wrong.

VGs are not "sponge tanks", nor do they even *want* to stack HP whatsoever. In fact, they get the least out of hp stacking compared to the other tanks because they get the least benefit from it (thanks to having only a single especially mediocre self-heal as the only ability that has *anything* to do with their HP), not to mention having the least *need* for it because they have the most stable incoming damage profile (thanks to high shield/abs and high passive DR). Shadows get some benefit from HP stacking because a majority of their self healing is based on percentage of max hp and Guardians get more out of Enure with higher hp, but, honestly, no tank should ever *want* to stack their hp whatsoever. Mitigation is king, hands down.

Guardians don't have appreciably more survivability CDs than Shadows. In fact, they're going to use their CDs less than a Shadow because of the long CDs (90 sec, 180 sec, and 180 sec compared to 120 sec, 120 sec, and 30-40 sec). Focused Defense can be interpreted as one, especially if you're a hybrid tank, but it creates some rather substantial threat generation problems since it's a threat dump and resource consumer as well as a self-heal. Most Guardian tanks don't even use it and, even if they do, it's as an absolute last resort, rather than something you'd want to use on the 45 second CD. A CD that eats up resources and drops threat on the tank that has the tightest resource management and worst threat generation isn't really an optimally effective CD (though it can be effective at specific times). As to the autobuffing, Guardians also pack less of this than Shadows do and the same amount as VGs. VGs have Smoke Grenade, Ion Screen, and Static Field (which is the exact same amount as Guardians get). Shadows have Particle Acceleration, Harnessed Shadows, Slow Time, and Force Breach.

As to Shadows, yes, they are the self-healing tanks, but it's not nearly as extreme as you seem to make it out to be, nor is it "healed off of every attack" (CT procs for 247 hp with an ICD of 4.5 seconds, which means the actual proc rate is closer to 6 seconds; the major component of self-healing is derived from HSx3 TkT, which is 8% of max hp every ~12-15 seconds or so). The self healing provides roughly 5% of their total mitigation. The more important distinction is that Shadows rely on active mitigation (via self healing and CD ab/use) as well as def/shield/abs as opposed to pure DR. Mentioning the lower DR (which is what I interpret your "Heavy Armor" "Heavy Armor" "Light Armor" comments were intended to express, though you didn't mention that VGs have "better" "Heavy Armor" than Guardians do by virtue of numerous talents that directly increase armor and outright DR; also, all of the tank stances increase armor some amount; VGs and Guardians both get 60% whereas Shadows get 115% because of their Light Armor, which still isn't enough to bring them up to the same level as Guardian and VG tanks; it really just lets them largely break even with/get slightly better than untank-stance heavy armor) without also mentioning the superior def/shield/abs is simply being disingenuous.

If you feel like responding to a question that has already been answered in rather explicit detail, at least have the decency to get your information correct.
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NoFishing
11.21.2012 , 10:17 AM | #15
Kitru already did a wonderful job of explaining things from the tank perspective, but I'll give my opinion from the healing/dps side: shadow. period.

First is their utility, as shadows allow many trash mobs to be skipped with their stealth CC. They also have an easier time grouping lone trash mobs for AoEs with their pull. And they can reposition themselves and/or bosses quickly when required (e.g, EC T&Z) with force speed.

None of which would matter if they couldn't stand up to a boss, but they don't really give up much (if anything) here. It is REALLY hard to pull threat from a shadow. And as long as they have cooldowns up, they can survive in boss fights the longest without outside healing, making recovery from "oops" moments more plausible.

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Larzi
12.06.2012 , 11:50 AM | #16
I am very cruious why people think tanks should stack their stats above the diminishing returns, you wouldnt give pointer to dps classes to have 100% surge when only they only need 75%.

I stack HP after having 15% defensve, and 55% sheild and absob, 9k armoing. Tank great with 31.5k hp as a vanguard.

i see no need to max out my defensive and sheild so mitigate.001 percentage more dmg on a 1k hit, no thanks ill stack an extra 6,000 hit points. (exagerating)

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EFSoupy
12.06.2012 , 01:05 PM | #17
Quote: Originally Posted by Larzi View Post
I am very cruious why people think tanks should stack their stats above the diminishing returns, you wouldnt give pointer to dps classes to have 100% surge when only they only need 75%.

I stack HP after having 15% defensve, and 55% sheild and absob, 9k armoing. Tank great with 31.5k hp as a vanguard.

i see no need to max out my defensive and sheild so mitigate.001 percentage more dmg on a 1k hit, no thanks ill stack an extra 6,000 hit points. (exagerating)
The reason for stacking mitigation above diminishing returns is because it means less healing for your healers. It's as simple as that. You need enough HP to survive long enough for your healer to be able to heal you and the rest of the group. Any HP you stack above that is HP you really don't need to survive. If you don't need the HP to survive, you can go above diminishing returns and reduce the amount of healing your healer needs to do.
The reason dps and healers don't like to stack surge is because they can get better use out of a different stat (I think there are times they end up above those caps, I'm not to that point on my dps so I don't worry too much about the stat itemization). You have an argument for stacking damage stats to help increase damage output/ threat, but having more HP than you need is kind of a waste of stats that could go elsewhere.

-Chapulin

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Kitru
12.06.2012 , 01:26 PM | #18
Quote: Originally Posted by Larzi View Post
I am very cruious why people think tanks should stack their stats above the diminishing returns, you wouldnt give pointer to dps classes to have 100% surge when only they only need 75%.
There isn't a single point of diminishing returns. It's a curve. If you're choosing a specific point to call "diminishing returns", it's based upon arbitrary assignation you've chosen.

There are only 2 times that you can say that it's better to stack Endurance than it is to stack mitigation: the first is when your HP is too low to provide your healers with a large enough window to keep you alive (this is ~24-25k hp for 8man and 26-27k hp in 16m), and the second is when you're a Shadow and you've stacked so friggin' much mitigation already that the minute increases to your self healing gained by increasing your max hp actually approach the contributions from further mitigation stacking and that only happens if you stack a metric buttload of mitigation.

As a Vanguard, you get *absolutely nothing* out of stacking Endurance. All you're doing by increasing your hp is making your healers dump more healing into you. The fact that you can clear content is less a tribute to your own gearing mentality and more the skill of your healers to continually dump enough heals into you that the fact that you take substantially more damage than other tanks that stack mitigation would doesn't matter.
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Larzi
12.06.2012 , 03:11 PM | #19
Kit, you seem very insestant that it is hurting for a tank to have 30-32k hps. Lets not forget that all the survivabilty stats have met and exceeded their diminishing return values.

Your defensive response to vanguards having high hitpoints sounds like your jealous that if shadows stacks endurance its very noticable that they wear light armor (ie. the dmg you take is very fickle and can spike)

I have encountered 2 tanks that rotate out raiding with in my guild.

1.) Vanguard tank: he takes these posts to heart and has a bit more defense than me, while i still have more shield and absorb than him.... also 6k more hps. How is this my fault i have better gear and can afford hp augs?

2.) Shadow tank:much higher defense than myself, not near on absorb and dmg reduction......... i parsed more dps and took less dmg than him in tbf. He told me the same thing u are trying to say about stacking mitigation DRand factual parsing eveidence be damned


Fact is, the classes were built differently a reason, play style, usefulness, overall feel.

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Kitru
12.06.2012 , 03:37 PM | #20
Quote: Originally Posted by Larzi View Post
Lets not forget that all the survivabilty stats have met and exceeded their diminishing return values.
First off, I'm not being defensive. I don't need to defend my position because the math and the facts support it already. I'm also not jealous. If I *wanted* to have a massive amount of hp, I could easily do that. It's not like it's *hard* to aug for full Endurance, stack all B type mods, and use Steadfast instead of Bastion enhancements. There's nothing to be jealous *about*.

Secondly, if you've got better gear *and* you're fully aug'd, *of course* you're going to take less damage than someone without. You're comparing apples and oranges, especially when dealing with a class that explicitly uses armor as the biggest factor in its survivability (VGs have the absolute highest contribution to mitigation based upon armor thanks to their armor talents as well as their stance). If you really want to make a point, switch out your gear from Endurance stacked to mitigation stacked and *then* compare the two parses: the only difference will be specific gearing (rather than differences in playstyle, not to mention primary v. OT preferencing) making the difference in damage dealt and damage taken.

Third, and I feel kind of strange having to reiterate this, there isn't a specific point of diminishing returns, which you somehow keep referencing. DR exists on a curve. If you've discovered a point, you've arrived at it completely arbitrarily, especially since the only point where you could explicitly say that Endurance is better than any specific point of mitigation amounts to 3 separate points for stacking each different type of rating *and*, even then, it only applies to Shadows because neither Guardians nor VGs get any actual mitigation benefits from Endurance. The DR point that you seem to have stumbled upon (and I honestly have to wonder where you came up with it, since I'm used to seeing 18/60/60 for VGs even for the hp stackers, not the 15/50/50 you seem to be using) represents not an actual point where it is mathematically more valuable to stack Endurance rather than a specific mitigation stat (unless you're using a metric like eHP or TtK, neither of which is actually a useful metric of tank survivability because nothing hits hard enough to justify a pool of hp beyond 27k, even in 16m, within such a short time frame unless you're doing something wrong or your healers have terrible reaction speed but amazing overall throughput) but rather the point where you have personally decided, based on an arbitrary assignment, most likely derived from vague intuition and epeen desire, that you don't need to stack your mitigation any more. It's not supported by anything other than your own abstraction and certification that "it's best because I can do content with it!" (which actually means nothing because optimization is not a binary attribute wherein "I win" is the only condition required; there were people at the release of the game, using Rakata with the full slew of Accuracy in there, that honestly believed that they were optimally geared for threat and mitigation simply because they passed a given piece of content, which is just laughable).

The thing that bothers me, wherein I draw my indignation from, is your assertion that you have the optimal stat allocation simply because you have cleared a piece of content, even though it flies completely against basic logic (mitigation = less damage taken; hp = able to take more damage; higher hp != less damage taken) as well as every bit of math that has actually been done to determine optimal stat allocation. You can clear content in full PvP gear; that doesn't mean that it's the best loadout to use. You're providing flawed logic and incorrect information to people asking for legitimate answers to the question "what is the best way to allocate my stats to maximize survivability?": hp stacking is *not* the best way to do that.
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