166: My Life As a Tank

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My Life As a Tank

"Looking back into my MMOG past, a pattern emerges: I've always been a tank. EverQuest? Paladin. City of Heroes? Ice Tanker. And now in EverQuest 2, Guardian. I played other classes too, but they were always just a diversion by comparison.

"I can't remember the last time being the main tank could be considered fun. So why do I do it? Because I'm a nice person or I'm a sucker - either way, I can't say 'no.' And maybe, because deep down somewhere, it's nice to be needed."

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Hey, look at that picture of Jeff! Looks like someone's going to the gun show!

image

Ugh, I am never going to live this picture down am I?

Spinwhiz:
Ugh, I am never going to live this picture down am I?

Muahahahahhahahahahhaa!

Never!

Read the article! It's about the article! lol

Spinwhiz:
Ugh, I am never going to live this picture down am I?

No.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oUa2atNxhfg

You know what you are? You're like a big bear with claws and with fangs.

It's got to be almost like an internal monologue with Vince saying it as well. :D (You can't really see it here, but Jeff bears a striking resemblance to Vince Vaughn)

Spinwhiz:
Read the article! It's about the article! lol

So it's not you?

Damn, I'd better stop printing...

I was a MT for my WoW guild for almost 3 years and I totally know where you're coming from. It's a bit of a rush to know that you are literally the single person in that 40-man raid that can make or break a boss fight. One of my favorite fights ever was when we were fighting Nefarion and our other MT went down in phase 3, I stepped in and finished the fight. That was our first time ever killing Nefarion. It was totally awesome.

If I go down, the whole group falls with me. It's not the healers fault if I kick the bucket; it's my fault I don't have better armor. And if someone else dies, it's not the fault of the nuker who chain casted for 30k - my taunts just weren't good enough.

Really? Because I often play a healer, and I can assure you--everything is usually the HEALER'S fault for not bailing people out of unworkably stupid situations.

The tank charges in, rounds up eleven or twelve elite mobs who pound him down to 10% of his health every two seconds... and it's the HEALER'S fault that he dies. Because a healer should have infinite healing capacity for instantaneous, perpetual heals to full strength every single second. And if I don't, I "just don't know how to heal."

No, really! Just ask around! The healer's the one to blame for every wipe.

Yes, the guy in the pic IS me. It's okay...I can take it...I'm a tank! :)

I never play any role other than that of the tank. DPSing, healing... they don't mix with me. It's all about going toe-to-toe with the enemy, taking hit after hit (And in the case of WoW, nerf after nerf) and emerging bloody but victorious.

Spinwhiz:
Yes, the guy in the pic IS me. It's okay...I can take it...I'm a tank! :)

Even tanks die sometimes. Hehehe, this picture shall end you!

*Promptly spreads picture to all 6 corners of the internet.*

Calybos:

If I go down, the whole group falls with me. It's not the healers fault if I kick the bucket; it's my fault I don't have better armor. And if someone else dies, it's not the fault of the nuker who chain casted for 30k - my taunts just weren't good enough.

Really? Because I often play a healer, and I can assure you--everything is usually the HEALER'S fault for not bailing people out of unworkably stupid situations.

The tank charges in, rounds up eleven or twelve elite mobs who pound him down to 10% of his health every two seconds... and it's the HEALER'S fault that he dies. Because a healer should have infinite healing capacity for instantaneous, perpetual heals to full strength every single second. And if I don't, I "just don't know how to heal."

No, really! Just ask around! The healer's the one to blame for every wipe.

I wish you were my healer. lol I did have some great healers in my guild, but in pick-up raids and groups? *shiver*

A very nice and interesting read there.

I can personnaly relate to your experiences in real life with standing up for people, it often ended up in a few punches to the head but nothing too bad.

Shamus O Lively:
A very nice and interesting read there.

I can personnaly relate to your experiences in real life with standing up for people, it often ended up in a few punches to the head but nothing too bad.

And we wonder why you are the way you are....

. And if someone else dies, it's not the fault of the nuker who chain casted for 30k - my taunts just weren't good enough.

Hah! Too true.

I've been tanking on WoW for years. On principle, its a job anyone can do. All you need to do is slap a few taunts down and take damage. Yet the job - as your article implies - can also have some deep connection with the psyche; tapping into some sort of need to do good; almost altruism (if it wasn't for the props and phat loot). This is what makes the good tanks stand out from the rest. Personally, I loathe pick-up groups in MMOs, because - despite the amount of effort you put in - praise is rarely given. To use your real-life examples, Jeff, its kind of like saving the biggest arsehole in the world from throwing himself off a cliff and then being punched in the face, followed by a 'What 'cha do that for!?'. I like to tank for my friends as it feels like I have something worth protecting there, and I'm not just forced into defending a load of random blokes from death. I was out clubbing about two weeks ago, and a fight broke out on the street after the place closed in the early hours. There was nothing big about it, just two 20somethings bashing their chests against one another and shouting. Even so, I felt a priority to protect and keep my friends I was with out of trouble rather than helping stop the fight. What's that, then? Being a cowardly twat or knowing that - even if I did step in - the risk of things turning sour or me simply being heckled for it was too great?

There is nothing better than joining a pick-up group and seeing the cheers, thanks and "woots" from five to 23 other people.

I'd argue that there is something better: Receiving those thanks from people you love.

Melaisis:

. And if someone else dies, it's not the fault of the nuker who chain casted for 30k - my taunts just weren't good enough.

Hah! Too true.

I've been tanking on WoW for years. On principle, its a job anyone can do. All you need to do is slap a few taunts down and take damage. Yet the job - as your article implies - can also have some deep connection with the psyche; tapping into some sort of need to do good; almost altruism (if it wasn't for the props and phat loot). This is what makes the good tanks stand out from the rest. Personally, I loathe pick-up groups in MMOs, because - despite the amount of effort you put in - praise is rarely given. To use your real-life examples, Jeff, its kind of like saving the biggest arsehole in the world from throwing himself off a cliff and then being punched in the face, followed by a 'What 'cha do that for!?'. I like to tank for my friends as it feels like I have something worth protecting there, and I'm not just forced into defending a load of random blokes from death. I was out clubbing about two weeks ago, and a fight broke out on the street after the place closed in the early hours. There was nothing big about it, just two 20somethings bashing their chests against one another and shouting. Even so, I felt a priority to protect and keep my friends I was with out of trouble rather than helping stop the fight. What's that, then? Being a cowardly twat or knowing that - even if I did step in - the risk of things turning sour or me simply being heckled for it was too great?

There is nothing better than joining a pick-up group and seeing the cheers, thanks and "woots" from five to 23 other people.

I'd argue that there is something better: Receiving those thanks from people you love.

Well said Melaisis and I would have to agree with you, except about tanking not being hard. Thank you for your feedback.

Melaisis:
I've been tanking on WoW for years. On principle, its a job anyone can do. All you need to do is slap a few taunts down and take damage.

Considering the number of bad tanks I've come across I'm inclined to disagree, not anyone can tank. While tanking isn't specifically difficult if you think it's just about "taunting a few times" then you aren't doing it right. Unless you are playing a druid tank...that's ez-mode.

Danny Ocean:

Spinwhiz:
Yes, the guy in the pic IS me. It's okay...I can take it...I'm a tank! :)

*Promptly spreads picture to all 6 corners of the internet.*

Google, Youtube, Wikipedia, Photobucket, Webmail and...? :]

I love doing the whole tanking thing. EverQuest and WoW particularly. It's always the feeling of being needed! Great article.

Calybos:
Really? Because I often play a healer, and I can assure you--everything is usually the HEALER'S fault for not bailing people out of unworkably stupid situations.

The tank charges in, rounds up eleven or twelve elite mobs who pound him down to 10% of his health every two seconds... and it's the HEALER'S fault that he dies. Because a healer should have infinite healing capacity for instantaneous, perpetual heals to full strength every single second. And if I don't, I "just don't know how to heal."

No, really! Just ask around! The healer's the one to blame for every wipe.

In my old guild the healers took a lot of the brunt...but then again a few were just terrible. Then we got into BC and the smaller raid sizes made it apparent that the ones who did ok in 40-mans couldn't handle the smaller group dynamic and their ability (or lack thereof) became really apparent.

Google, Youtube, Wikipedia, Photobucket, Webmail and...? :]

4chan.

roo18:
Google, Youtube, Wikipedia, Photobucket, Webmail and...? :]

SomethingAwful ;)

Virgil:

roo18:
Google, Youtube, Wikipedia, Photobucket, Webmail and...? :]

SomethingAwful ;)

Oh lord. I can only imagine what is in store for me with you guys shouting to the hills about this article...and picture. lol

iburns:

Melaisis:
I've been tanking on WoW for years. On principle, its a job anyone can do. All you need to do is slap a few taunts down and take damage.

Considering the number of bad tanks I've come across I'm inclined to disagree, not anyone can tank. While tanking isn't specifically difficult if you think it's just about "taunting a few times" then you aren't doing it right. Unless you are playing a druid tank...that's ez-mode.

Heh, yeah I was being overly simple, but the point is that not everyone has to have the kind of affectionate mindset and dogma that a lot of tanks share. I think there's a definite line between having a skill of playing the game and really loving tanking because of what it involves (basically protecting other people). The best tanks have a passion for what they do, but the passion doesn't necessarily have to be there to make you a good player; it just certainly helps you to stick with the job if you have it in you already.

Thanks Spin, BTW. :)

Melaisis:

iburns:

Melaisis:
I've been tanking on WoW for years. On principle, its a job anyone can do. All you need to do is slap a few taunts down and take damage.

Considering the number of bad tanks I've come across I'm inclined to disagree, not anyone can tank. While tanking isn't specifically difficult if you think it's just about "taunting a few times" then you aren't doing it right. Unless you are playing a druid tank...that's ez-mode.

Heh, yeah I was being overly simple, but the point is that not everyone has to have the kind of affectionate mindset and dogma that a lot of tanks share. I think there's a definite line between having a skill of playing the game and really loving tanking because of what it involves (basically protecting other people). The best tanks have a passion for what they do, but the passion doesn't necessarily have to be there to make you a good player; it just certainly helps you to stick with the job if you have it in you already.

Exactly, you hit the nail on the head with that last sentence.

Tanks are my heroes!!!

A very interesting read. I find myself in the same situation as you Spinwhiz.
Although I stopped playing WoW many, many months ago - and not quite reaching the level of skill that you obviously have, I certainly relate to what you've said in your post about your real life protection instincts. I'm exactly the same.

I'm probably around the same size as yourself, and whenever I know potential danger may spill over onto my friends/family, I am incredibly protective of them. Thanks for the article, was a great read.

TerribleTerryTate:
A very interesting read. I find myself in the same situation as you Spinwhiz.
Although I stopped playing WoW many, many months ago - and not quite reaching the level of skill that you obviously have, I certainly relate to what you've said in your post about your real life protection instincts. I'm exactly the same.

I'm probably around the same size as yourself, and whenever I know potential danger may spill over onto my friends/family, I am incredibly protective of them. Thanks for the article, was a great read.

Thank you for the compliment, I'm very glad you liked it! Also, it's great to hear that there are people who view things the same way I do. Keep on keepin' on brother!

cainx10a:
Tanks are my heroes!!!

damn right we are
(im almost always the tank for reasons even im not so sure about, and i am always the tank)

Calybos:

Really? Because I often play a healer, and I can assure you--everything is usually the HEALER'S fault for not bailing people out of unworkably stupid situations.

The tank charges in, rounds up eleven or twelve elite mobs who pound him down to 10% of his health every two seconds... and it's the HEALER'S fault that he dies. Because a healer should have infinite healing capacity for instantaneous, perpetual heals to full strength every single second. And if I don't, I "just don't know how to heal."

No, really! Just ask around! The healer's the one to blame for every wipe.

Hell yeah, you wouldn't believe the slack I got for failing one Continual Heal. Near-death threats.

And there's always the one idiot Blaster who thinks he's a Tank before screaming for/at the Medic.

The_root_of_all_evil:

Calybos:

Really? Because I often play a healer, and I can assure you--everything is usually the HEALER'S fault for not bailing people out of unworkably stupid situations.

The tank charges in, rounds up eleven or twelve elite mobs who pound him down to 10% of his health every two seconds... and it's the HEALER'S fault that he dies. Because a healer should have infinite healing capacity for instantaneous, perpetual heals to full strength every single second. And if I don't, I "just don't know how to heal."

No, really! Just ask around! The healer's the one to blame for every wipe.

Hell yeah, you wouldn't believe the slack I got for failing one Continual Heal. Near-death threats.

And there's always the one idiot Blaster who thinks he's a Tank before screaming for/at the Medic.

I actually got to the point where I would just let noob DPSers die. If you are dumb enough to start with your biggest nukes and pull aggro, you deserve to watch the rest of the fight with your face in the dirt. Tough love...but I'm not your mama. :)

Gaming aside, we need more people like you. People with an innate desire to protect others against harm and refuse to stand by and watch evil being done without making an effort to stop it.

I salute you.

I love tanks in GW. I play as an assassin, so in pvp i mainly try to get in a group with a tank so he can distract other players and take all the damage (since assassins dont have very good armor) and i can sneak in, do a crap load of damage, and sneak out.

So yes, tanks are also my hero.

Novan Leon:
Gaming aside, we need more people like you. People with an innate desire to protect others against harm and refuse to stand by and watch evil being done without making an effort to stop it.

I salute you.

Thank you! That made my day. :)

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