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# Blood Tanking - Actively Mitigating since before it was cool

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### #1 Tyvi

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 09:47 PM

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### #2 Reniat

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 10:05 PM

Not convinced on the RC for max DPS. Are you factoring in gaming RE for B runes? Now getting it on a B rune on every proc would be very difficult, as you'd have to time rune dumps when you have an FU pair without letting both FUs go off cycle as well as not capping RP. This would be made easier with the reduced GCD, but still not nearly as easy as RC. You don't need to hit every RE proc on blood rune to make it worth it, however. In fact you only need to get ~18.867% of your RE procs on blood runes to make it equal in damage. Anything above that is just more dmg.

Heres the math proof, since i know many will want to see it:

1 Heart Strike is worth ((11828+(70,000/14)*3.3)*1.7+1482)*1.3*(1-.3209)*1.04 = 45,559.735
1 Death Strike is worth ((11828+(70,000/14)*3.3)*2.35+1464)*(1-.3209)*1.04 = 48,050.53wd
RC is worth 13.5% of a heart strike and 13.5% of a death strike (or 27% of half of a death strike) per rune strike

RC's value per rune strike:
RC = .135*45,559.735 + .135*(48,050.53) = 12,637.4 dmg.

Now we need to calculate the value of B runes per rune strike required to make RE do equal damage:
(B runes)*(45,559.753) + (.45 - (b runes))*(48,050.53/2) = 12,673.4
B runes = .0849
So in order to make them equal, one Rune Strike needs to equal 8.49% of a blood rune.
Since Rune Strike gives 45% of a rune back, and needs to give at least 8.49% of a blood rune, we find that you need .0849/.45 â‰ˆ .18867 â‰ˆ 18.867% of your RE procs need to be on B runes. This is a very manageable number, especially since if you just left it up to RNG you would get ~33% over the course of the whole fight.

### #3 Tyvi

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 10:12 PM

You are right about Runic Corruption being slighly worse for a full DPS rotation and I am sure I had that in the post at some point but I must have lost it during copying over.

The reason I still list Runic Corruption as being better is that it helps you do the most DPS while doing your normal tanking rotation (since RC will boost your Blood Rune regen on top of the survival benefits of the FU/D Runes) and not a full out Blood DPS rotation where you use all Death Runes for Heart Strike/Soul Reaper etc. This is simply not feasible while tanking.

I'll edit that caveat in, thanks.

### #4 Reniat

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 10:18 PM

But consider the flexibility that RE would provide. Gaming for B runes and using D runes on HS would provide more DPS than RC, but with a simply play style change you can go back to gaming for F and U runes and have more DS throughput than RC. And remember only 19% of your RE procs need to go to B runes to make RE do more dps than RC, so you don't have to sacrifice every single RE proc to make a difference. Good guide overall though. Not trying to just criticize

Still going over some of the talent assessments, but otherwise I agree with everything (maybe not the SSG>SS for EH though. Not enough EH to make it worth it, even if you need EH. I'd rather take the dmg reduction of SS and put an extra stam gem or two to get that EH.)

Also, really glad to see another guide that isn't all about overall dmg taken and actually focuses on reducing spike dmg which is the most threatening and thus the most important.

### #5 yoolen

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 10:33 PM

Hit and Expertise help us land our Death Strikes more reliably. Why is this important? Because it allows us to react to damage at will. If you know a boss is going to land a big hit on you, you can wait until you take the damage and then Death Strike to heal back a portion of that. If you have to second guess if your Death Strike will land even if you wait then that kind of defeats the purpose. In particularily bad cases, you might even get killed because your Death Strike missed more than once in a row on the harder hitting bosses.

I'm not sure if I'm misreading this, but is the indication that missed/dodged Death Strikes no longer heal (and thus do not provide a shield)? When I was testing on a dummy last night I found that missed/dodged DSes continue to provide a blood shield (granted it's not boosted by scent of blood). I'm only 88 on the beta currently so I'm not sure if this is something for MoP proper or only at 90 or if I'm just reading too much into the statement.

### #6 Reniat

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 01:52 AM

Death Strike is currently bugged and continues to give the shield on dodges and misses. Here is a lot i threw together proving it. You can see my shield is refreshed at the exact same time stamp as DS is dodged.

World of Logs - Real Time Raid Analysis

### #7 yoolen

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 04:34 AM

Yeah, I just did DS tonight which confirmed my dummy testing. Blood shields are still being generated. Is the change to DS+BS supposed to have gone live for the pre-patch or is that supposed to be arriving in MoP proper? I went back to the Beta and tested it and it's the same as on live.

Looking at through the beta build change summaries on MMO-Champ I couldn't find anything indicating that DS was being reverted to the 4.2 state. Granted I haven't been keeping super up to date on the build-to-build changes, but it seems like requiring reforging to Hit/Exp in order to survive is exceptionally punishing towards tanks. Not getting SoB buffed DS is already punishment enough in itself, I find it difficult to believe that they'd actually revert back to 4.2 DS.

I did notice that I was taking a lot more damage (threat generation at the start was very rough) mostly due to being unable to pool/sit on runes; once I got threat, it was a lot easier to plan out incoming damage.

### #8 Tyvi

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 06:16 AM

Yeah, I just did DS tonight which confirmed my dummy testing. Blood shields are still being generated. Is the change to DS+BS supposed to have gone live for the pre-patch or is that supposed to be arriving in MoP proper? I went back to the Beta and tested it and it's the same as on live.

Looking at through the beta build change summaries on MMO-Champ I couldn't find anything indicating that DS was being reverted to the 4.2 state. Granted I haven't been keeping super up to date on the build-to-build changes, but it seems like requiring reforging to Hit/Exp in order to survive is exceptionally punishing towards tanks. Not getting SoB buffed DS is already punishment enough in itself, I find it difficult to believe that they'd actually revert back to 4.2 DS.

The new Death Strike should have been added to the pre-MoP patch but it seems like they copied the bug over from beta to live. As to how you can tell, the tooltips of the 4.3 Death Strike and the current one are different: The 4.3 tooltip specifically split the healing/absorb bit from the damage and mentioned that the damage would only occur if the strike successfully landed (I couldn't find the old 4.3 tooltip to link to unfortunately). The current version on the other hand links the damage and the healing/absorb together so the Death Strike has to land for the Blood Shield and healing to occur.

As to being exceptionally punishing, I'd disagree with that. Death Strike not healing and shielding us was indeed punishing in T11 and T12 heroics but that was because no other tank had to gear for accuracy and because it was just not feasible to ever hard cap expertise either. Now that every tank cares about accuracy stats (meaning bosses and tank balance will be designed with this in mind) and Death Strike cannot be parried anymore, the new Death Strike is much fairer. Additionally, you want to be spell hit capped anyway for Outbreak not to miss (if you go for the accuracy gearing method, that is) which just happens to be the point where Death Strike will always land, too. And that's just in addition to the greater DPS we will be doing which is and will always be important - more so with the new Vengeance people got to test and play with now.

While we cannot get Death Strike to always land in the 463 heroic dungeon blues yet without sacrificing mastery, it becomes much easier once we start getting a few epics and raid bosses generally won't hit hard enough in normal difficulty for a missed Death Strike or two to be a problem. It only does become a problem once we start getting hit hard - which is conveniently when we start doing hardmodes and should already have good enough gear to get spell hit capped without sacrificing Mastery, so it all works out.

Where I could see a potential problem is in Challenge modes because the bosses in there are +3 level and we are getting downscaled to 463 gear so we won't be able to get Death Strike to always land. That said, I wouldn't expect Challenge mode bosses to hit as hard as normal difficulty raid bosses (even once you count the fact that you only have one healer there who has to split attention with you and the DPS whereas in raids you will have more healers) so it will probably be fine there as well. Correct me if I am wrong though, since I didn't actually run Challenge modes on Beta.

On a different note, let me know if anyone has something more to add for the encounter specific tips and tricks section, either here or via PM.

Thanks!

EDIT:

We were concerned that Blood DKs were too susceptible to spike damage. Blood DKs rely on being able to take damage and then heal it back, despite taking the largest hits of any tank. This works fine most of the time, but strings of unavoided hits or really large hits in a row might have presented a problem. We chose not to reduce damage taken, but to increase their maximum health instead. The stamina buff from Blood Presence from +8% to +25%.

Beta Class Balance Analysis Pt. II - MMO-Champion BlueTracker

We got a significant health buff, which should give us the highest Stamina scaling of all tanks now.
And what a great change this is for us: It was the perfect way to increase our EH without de-emphasizing the importance of our active mitigation whereas just giving us a flat damage reduction boost would have made Death Striking slightly less important (the less baseline mitigation we have, the more important our active mitigation becomes).
And to be fair, the minimum heal size also got increased with this as well which should help those that cannot/do not want to time their Death Strikes.

### #9 Hamsda

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 07:28 AM

I can't search for the bluepost because I'm at work, but there was a confirmation that dps and tanks will not have to "overcap" hit and expertise to still be hitcapped in challenge modes. Those stats probably just won't get scaled down.

Also the buff to DK hp looks really nice, should make healing you guys not so much of a "oh shit he got a big hit" kind of affair
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### #10 krekot

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 01:02 PM

Nice buff to EH. I was yesterday in DS and on figths where aren't big aoe healing is needed I done more than holy pala and resto druid. AotD do second me dps on every figths, first was always DS and I choose RC. How much damage do HS 100%-25% and 25%-0%, and how much do SR 100%-25% and 25%-0%. Is there big diffrent?

### #11 Otou

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 01:06 PM

If you remember this post, theres a pretty good chance that Death Strike always healing/shielding is intentional. If you think about it, we're more dependent on hit/exp than the other tank classes.

Blood needs hit/exp for:
• Resource generation - Landing runic power / rune abilities
• Scent of Blood - Increases the strength of death strike, generates more runic power
• Death Strike - Increases the reliability always procs heal/blood shield

Guardian needs hit/exp for:
• Resource generation - Landing rage generating abilities

Brewmaster needs hit/exp for:
• Resource generation - Landing chi generating abilities
• Blackout Kick - maintaining the shuffle buff always procs shuffle

Prot Pala needs hit/exp for:
• Resource generation - Landing holy power generating abilities
• Shield of the Righteous - Increases the reliability always procs sotr

Prot War needs hit/exp for:
• Resource generation - Landing rage generating abilities

Depending on how the devs are looking at it, they could also categorize Scent of Blood as resource generation. Since it's responsible for the vast majority of our runic power. Looking at it like this, it would be a bit imbalanced if everyone else got guaranteed active mitigation, but Blood didn't.

### #12 Tyvi

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 01:15 PM

I can't search for the bluepost because I'm at work, but there was a confirmation that dps and tanks will not have to "overcap" hit and expertise to still be hitcapped in challenge modes. Those stats probably just won't get scaled down.

It's true that the game will not scale down your Hit or Expertise ratings for Challenge modes (for any role, not just tanks). However, the game will still scale down your other stats proportionally to compensate so we don't gain anything from it at best and at worst the game will not differentiate between the other stats and scale down your Mastery as much as your avoidance - just for accuracy you may or may not even have needed.

I expect serious Challenge mode tanks to either reforge beforehand or build a second set just for this with only exact as much Hit and Expertise as they need so the game doesn't remove too much of the other beneficial stats (Mastery, especially).

But, as I said earlier, worrying about accuracy stats for survival might not even be an issue. It is more likely that you will want to be capped for the trash mobs because of the added DPS instead (since Heart Strike is going to be really, really good there).

EDIT:

If you remember this post, theres a pretty good chance that Death Strike always healing/shielding is intentional. If you think about it, we're more dependent on hit/exp than the other tank classes.

That's a pretty good list. I always considered our resource generation to be less prone to unlucky boss avoidance simply because our Runes always regenerated and Rune Strike is easy to cap (and if it misses we only lose a small portion of RP).
However with Scent of Blood you are probably right since that gives us yet another source of resource generation which - in addition to Rune Strike/T5 procs - pretty much rivals the resource generation of other tanks.
If that assessment is true, then Death Strike should not be subject to boss avoidance after all. Though, for me, that is only a slight buff until I am geared up enough to gear for accuracy again because I like the reliability of being spell hit capped, of Rune Strike never missing and simply contributing more to DPS.
But nonetheless something to keep an eye out for once Blizzard releases the new patch that fixes the tooltips for the stealth buffed/nerfed abilities.

Nice buff to EH. I was yesterday in DS and on figths where aren't big aoe healing is needed I done more than holy pala and resto druid.

Are you including Blood Shield into that? Because I hope you aren't. I know WoL counts it as a heal but that would be like counting blocks or the ShotR damage reduction as healing.
(I am just asking because I see people mistake WoL absorbs for proper healing. I actually considered putting that in my FAQ because the inconsistency between how WoL and Recount/Skada track healing is causing quite a few misunderstandings.)

### #13 hilltopperpete

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 02:27 PM

Here's some thoughts from our heroic DS clear last night.

This no-capped vengeance is ridiculous, It has to get nerfed into the ground for 10m raids. After my first 120k trash pull, I knew I was in for a ridiculous night. After taking my first Hour of Twilight on Ultraxion, I had 85k attack power. I had a similar amount near the end of Spine. Wearing full DPS gear has almost no effect on my avoidance stats or my mastery. I have MORE avoidance in DPS gear because Strength is a stronger avoidance stat than Dodge at 85, and will be 90% as good as dodge at 90 right now. For the last 3 fights, I used my tank 4-set, but otherwise, it's completely unnecessary anymore.

Death Strike damage sucks now, I usually break grips while the DPS are on the tendon in Spine with a single DS, this week it took me at least 3-4 hits instead of one. I can't complain one bit, since the healing from Scent of Blood is amazing.

Holy Paladin's Sacred Shield- holy crap- it synergizes so well with Blood. Get yourself a pally healer friend for mists, and send him muffins every week. The offtank and I miscommunicated and he taunted Blackhorn back too early- he died from melee hits from BH and Goriona at 75% and the pally healer and I finished the fight as the only ones alive a full 2 minutes later (first wipe was a 240k heal crit on a Consuming Shroud target that instantly killed 8 people, second- rogue's Leeching poison almost killed a couple people, and people kept randomly dropping in the easy part). Our fury warrior took one for the team and taunted BH when I had no cooldowns available and got 2-shotted, but it gave me enough buffer to pool runes and pop Army for a Death Pact.

### #14 hilltopperpete

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 02:38 PM

Blood Boil now refreshes your diseases to 100% duration on all targets- the Devs did this because they wanted DKs to have a reason to use the free proc on BB instead of D&D. BB now does a LOT more damage- hit for 19k, crit for 35k on Ultrax. It's just crazy for AOE, I pulled 60k dps on Spine and 63k on Yor'sahj, and my diseases did 24% of my damage on Ultraxion, which was about 65k.

World of Logs - Real Time Raid Analysis
(Logs are messed up right now- didn't record our feral druid at all, recorded all heroic fights as normal, and 3 fights registered as invalid, though recount/skada matched up correctly).

### #15 krekot

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 03:18 PM

Are you including Blood Shield into that? Because I hope you aren't. I know WoL counts it as a heal but that would be like counting blocks or the ShotR damage reduction as healing.
(I am just asking because I see people mistake WoL absorbs for proper healing. I actually considered putting that in my FAQ because the inconsistency between how WoL and Recount/Skada track healing is causing quite a few misunderstandings.)

I was including Blood shield, but before 5.0 I can't never get close to healers.

### #16 SellionEU

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 11:15 PM

Mists of Pandaria Beta - Build 16030 - "Blood Presence now increases Stamina by 25%, up from 8%." - Will this allow us to skip some of the gemming for EH in the beginning of the xpac, or was our HP just way too low on beta @ lvl 90? Our guild aren't doing any Beta testing so I don't know. That is, either way, quite a significant boost.

### #17 Tyvi

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 06:06 AM

Good news everyone, Ghostcrawler has announced that Empower Rune Weapon and Army of the Dead will now reset for every raid encounter. For us that means there is literally no reason not to use Army and ERW atleast once per encounter which is a pretty awesome change.

Source: Beta Class Balance Analysis Pt. II - Forums - World of Warcraft

Mists of Pandaria Beta - Build 16030 - "Blood Presence now increases Stamina by 25%, up from 8%." - Will this allow us to skip some of the gemming for EH in the beginning of the xpac, or was our HP just way too low on beta @ lvl 90? Our guild aren't doing any Beta testing so I don't know. That is, either way, quite a significant boost.

Our health was fine but our damage reduction through Blood Presence and armor wasn't, yet we didn't take more overall damage than the other tanks.
The problem we had was that even though we were expected to (and could have) Death Striked after a big hit, we'd be dead before we got the chance to do so. The health buff helps us survive this hit now and we can use our active mitigation abilities just like the other tanks that could do it preemptively (and it doesn't change the overall damage taken either which a buff to Blood Presence's damage reduction would have done).
For example, stuff like Thrash from the Sha of Fear encounter does quite a lot of damage because you need to take 3 boss hits all at once and it happens roughly every 10 seconds so it is easy to time ShotR/Shield Block etc for it (but too frequent to just CD through it all with longer cooldowns). It's also easy to save a Death Strike for it but you have to survive it first since you will not always be able to get a Blood Shield up beforehand (which is what you would have had to do if you would lack the EH for it; but this particular boss has a 2.5 swing timer so you the maximum amount of hits you could get a Blood Shield from before the Thrash would have been 2 and that is assuming you didn't avoid any hits which in the worst case would give you a minimum sized Death Strike/Blood Shield which isn't going to help much against the following Thrash).

### #18 Valhauros

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 11:08 AM

Props on the guide, is very thorough and nicely organized.

When I read the new build's buff on Blood Presence, I thought it was just a typo. Are they actually increasing the percentage by 17%? That's a LOT. I already uninstalled the beta to get ready on live for Pandaria, but last I checked, my tank gear put me on 486k hit points (and I didn't have BiS gear). How much are the hit points up to now with the buff? Also, if the buff stays, I guess that would make Death Knights, by far, the highest effective health tanks in the game (since it also directly buffs the effects of mastery and avoidance).

Ignorant question: Is there any scenario (raid, dungeons, pvp, challenges or even soloing) where using (due to highly increased life) and (due to the removal of vengeance cap) would be useful or acceptable? I'm not a supporter of dual-wielding nostalgia, but I'd like to know if these items could be used effectively in the future (Same as Vial for Druid/Monk Tanks).

### #19 Otou

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 01:21 PM

Also, if the buff stays, I guess that would make Death Knights, by far, the highest effective health tanks in the game.

Depends on how much mastery guardians have, but I'm pretty sure this puts us ahead in most situations.

No to Souldrinker. Dual wield is a huge damage loss, stat loss, and now runic power loss thanks to Scent of Blood. Drain Lifes for around 10k (1.7% of 600k) won't come close to making up for it.

Hell yes to Bone Link Fetish. I wish I had one, because vengeance + whirling maw procs would be amazing.

### #20 krekot

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 03:02 PM

While using DRW and casting Blood Boil me own diseases are refreshed but that put by DRW aren't. Is this intend?

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