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threat threshold... value of tank DPS?

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes
threat threshold... value of tank DPS?

lellindil's Avatar

01.25.2012 , 10:50 AM | #1
So here is my question. I am not sure that there is enough data/experience out there to answer it definitively but I want to ask it all the same.

Right now everything in almost all of the tanking threads I have read is focused on total mitigation through defense, shield, absorb and other talents. Occasionally self healing is brought up, usually in the case of assassins/shadows. Through the comparisons the numbers seem to indicate that from a mitigation stand point it goes powertech > juggernaught >assassin. With a few percent separating each of them, the closest being powertech to juggernaught.

In the grand scheme of tanking what is the value of a higher dps? So for example in other games (final fantasy 11 comes to mind for me) mitigation is certainly a big deal but also being able to maintain agro and giving the dps a higher damage threshold and thus speeding up the combat is nearly as important.

In SWTOR what is the value of this and where to the classes match up? The answer for AOE tanking has been asked ad nauseam and my personal thought is that it also goes in an order of powertech > juggernaught >assassin. What about single target? I havenít tanked any operations yet but I have tanked several hard modes and it seems that single target threat is usually the one that matters most. There are certain encounters where aoe threat is important but usually it comes down to a fight with the big bad.

Do you feel like dps (not that there are threat/dps meters anyway) is something that should be taken more seriously when discussing the strengths of the given classes at tanking?

Speaking anecdotally I feel like the assassin/shadow can bring the most damage to bear on a single target, and hence the most threat, but I admit that I have not leveled a juggernaught or powertech to 50 yet so this is based purely on what I have seen in pvp and the rare occasions I have grouped with one myself.

What are your thoughts on the value of dps on the tank in an effort to speed up the fight? If you want to speak mathematicallyÖ
- Letís say for the sake of the argument that tank class 1 has 5% better mitigation than tank class 2 but tank class 2 has 5% more dps
- What does that look like mathematically? I am no math wiz but it seems like if you do 5% more damage it also allows your DPS to also do AT LEAST 5% more damage without pulling agro (I say at least because as far as I know the tank classes all have some mechanic which makes their damage generate additional threat). So how much does that shorten the fight seeing as in a normal 4man 3 out of 4 of your players are doing more damage.
- This does a few things
o Reduces the chance you hit the enrage timer of boss fights (reducing damage taken significantly)
o Shortens the overall duration of the fight, which reduces damage taken by what %?

What do you guys think?

Kuldak's Avatar

01.25.2012 , 11:54 AM | #2
While I wouldn't throw Tank DPS, and thus Tank threat, out the window, as it is important, I have very little issue with single target threat as a PT, geared pretty extensively towards the mitigation side of things. This is of course given that my dps give me a few seconds to build some threat before they unleash the fury. In flashpoints occasionally a geared dps will pull off me, because nobody really cares about giving the tank a second, and I'm not stressing too much about max threat. In ops, at least up through HM, as I haven't done nightmare yet, I haven't had any real issue with threat, and we aren't running into enrages, as long as dps don't die to fight mechanics. Any issues I might have can generally be solved by a quick taunt and/or early and good use of guard on the most "dangerous" dps.

On the flip side, at least so far, damage on me hasn't been a huge issue for our healers. I could see myself dropping a bit of mitigation for additional threat, should threat start to become an issue as my dps become more geared, and not be too adversely affected.

All in all, faster boss kills are nice, but it's better to have a slightly slower kill than to have a dead tank, or dead dps because healers are OOM from spamming the tank rather than keeping the dps alive. If the boss dies, the amount of damage it actually did is relatively unimportant, so saving some theoretical amount of healing by downing a boss a few seconds faster isn't worth considering imo.

husscool's Avatar

01.25.2012 , 01:06 PM | #3
As a Sith Juggernaut with no means of checking his threat levels on individual mobs, high dps is not only a crutch, it is a requirement. If I so much as pause on a boss to do a dps rotation on each mob since my aoe is so terrible, I -will- lose threat on the boss to a DPS that isn't terrible.

I hear PT's are much better suited to aoe damage and single target damage than Juggs. Lucky you.

Kuldak's Avatar

01.25.2012 , 04:45 PM | #4
PT AE threat is definately better than Jugg AE threat, though most of the time you don't need to pick up EVERY mob. Most trash packs in flashpoints have 1, maybe 2 strongs/elites, and the rest normal mobs. with proper use of CC on the stronger or more dangerous targets, you will rarely have to hold many on you. I always tell my dps to kill the mobs in order Normals>Strongs>Elites>Champions>Bosses. And try to assign kill orders for the stronger mobs, if possible, so dps doesn't pull a mob you have minimal threat on.

Normals die so fast they aren't worth trying to tank for the most part, and are only dangerous when left alone to shoot healers for extended periods. If you see one shooting a healer, and have the rage/heat/whatever to thow a little threat on it so it's not shooting a healer, you can do that, but it's generally not very necessary, as long as the dps is killing things in the proper order it won't be alive long enough to do much damage. Meanwhile, since the dps is busy killing the normals, that gives you as the tank extra time to put threat on all the non-CCed strong+mobs, so when the dps does finally get there, it should be very hard to pull threat off you, even if you are dealing with 2-3 mobs.

Ops are a little different, EV trash has a lot of enemies, but they really don't hit for much. It's often easiest to just group everyone up and AE threat to the best of your ability, unless a single dps has them all on them, they should be fine. Karagga's Trash, from what I remember, you just CC what you can, and have everyone focus the rest 1 at a time, and you should have an offtank in Karagga's anyway, so it's even less of an issue.

As long as your dps is paying attention to kill order and using CC properly, threat shouldn't be much of an issue. It just takes a bit more coordination than "Everybody run in and start AEing." it's amazing how many supposed "Tank Problems" are actually "DPS Problems."

Dukibritches's Avatar

01.25.2012 , 05:14 PM | #5
Personally I play an Assassin Tank and I typically have no issues with threat up through HM Flashpoints. This being said, I also think that Assassin tanks do acutally bring the highest DPS of any tank spec. I sometimes find myself switching off strongs or elites that both my DPS are blowing up in order to tank something else. Typically DPS doesnt pull threat off me even though I am on a completely different target. This isnt always the case, but I notice it happening pretty frequently. Obviously this depends on how much threat I have already loaded up on said mobs.

Keep in mind I always use my AOE threat attacks in my rotation, even on single targets, this is because they both offer a nice mitigation debuff. Unless a DPS dies really early in the fight we usually never hit hard enrages either.

With respect to my gear, I always gear for more mitigation. The only thing that I sometimes swap in or out is my Lvl50 Matrix cube, which provides something like 48 willpower. Otherwise I use a relic with some kind of defensive CD. I recall one fight that I didnt use the matrix cube and we ended up hitting the engrage on the last boss in HM Foundry(turns out on of my DPS stopped DPS'ing during one of his phases because he had heard about some bug the boss had) We ran it again and beat the enrage by a long shot.