Tordana's Comprehensive Warrior Raid Tanking Guide
- 1 Introduction and About Me
- 2 Tanking Builds and Macros
- --- 2.1 Reaver Hybrid (General)
- --- 2.2 Reaver/VK (Utility)
- --- 2.3 Paragon Tank (Knockback Immunity)
- 3 Guides and Suggested Builds by Boss
- --- 3.1 Drowned Halls
- --- 3.2 Gilded Prophecy
- --- 3.3 Greenscale's Blight
- --- 3.4 River of Souls
- --- 3.5 Hammerknell Fortress
- 4 Gear Suggestions
- 5 Conclusion
Welcome to the guide. This is intended to be a comprehensive source of information on Warrior raid tanking, with my preferred builds as well as specific information for each boss you will encounter in the raids of RIFT. Unlike other guides which may be more detailed in one particular aspect or another, in this guide I hope to provide an overview for all aspects of raid tanking. Do not take my word as law -- I heavily encourage everyone to experiment for themselves and use what works. While I have the utmost respect for noted Warrior contributors such as Ciderhelm and Kruunch, too often I see people assuming that their way is the only correct way to play. In truth, RIFT's soul system is designed such that there are many options that will work equally well depending on playstyle and gear level. What I present in this guide is simply the best way I have found of doing things. It may not agree in all aspects with other guide writers, nor may it agree in all aspects with what you, the reader, use. But it will work. There are no right ways to play, but there are wrong ways and I hope to steer you clear of those. In addition, I hope the tanking breakdowns by boss will be useful. I have not seen any similar guides that do this and thought it a void that needed filling.
Why should you listen to me? I have been tanking for RIFT since Beta 5 when I first played -- I created a warrior immediately and never looked back. I am currently the GM of Affinity on US-Belmont (Guardian Side) and though I didn't start in the GM position, I have been the raid leader and main tank starting with GSB progression in April all the way up to current Hammerknell progession. Affinity is 11/11 in Hammerknell and close to Conqueror (missing 4 achievements). I do not proclaim to be a guru of tanking, but I consider myself a quality player. While RIFT is my first game as a main tank, I have raid experience in other games, primarily LoTRO, where I was at my peak a healer (minstrel) in the #1 NA guild, Preying Mantis of Elendilmir server. I also have extensive competitive FPS experience, most recently in Team Fortress 2. Now, without further introduction allow me to get to the meat of the guide.
Tanking Builds and Macros
These builds are now updated for 1.8.
As of the release of 1.6, there is now one build to rule them all that contains incredible mitigation of both physical and magical damage.
1. Reaver Hybrid (General)
Rationale: 8 points in Paladin gets you the newly-improved Touch of Life, now on a 5 minute cooldown so you can potentially use it twice during a boss fight. Max armor and grab some block for mitigation. 20 points in Warlord gets you the essential raid buff Cutting Distraction, as well as a bonus AoE threat generator in Promise of Steel. One point in Call to Battle allows you to keep up the Dodge from Battlefield Awareness permanently, as well as any bonuses from the warlord synergy crystal. 38 points in Reaver gets you Binding of Death, an incredible 9% flat damage reduction.
Macros: I use three macros for this build, but there are some skills you cannot macro and will need to hit manually for optimal rotations.
Single target AP builder:
#show Aggressive Block suppressmacrofailures cast Aggressive Block cast Soul Sickness cast Cyclone Strike cast Empowering Strike cast Retaliation cast Necrotic Wounds
#show Soul Sickness suppressmacrofailures cast Plague Bringer cast Soul Sickness cast Cyclone Strike cast Promise of Steel cast Blood Fever cast Necrotic Wounds
#show Call to Entrench suppressmacrofailures cast Call to Entrench cast Call to Battle cast Dire Blow
EASY Single Target: Builder --> Builder --> Builder --> Finisher. This will keep the essential buffs going.
OPTIMAL Single Target: Same as EASY, but every 15 seconds manually cast Necrotic Wounds and Pacifying Strike rather than using the Builder macro.
AoE: Builder --> Builder --> Builder --> Finisher.
Passive Buffs: This build has a huge number of buffs to cast. The list is:
Aegis of Vitality
Shield of the Hero
Crest of the Abyss
Binding of Death
Aspect of the Fallen Hero
Cooldown Usage: If aggro is an issue, sprinkle Sergeant's Order (single-target), Concussion (AoE), and Intercept (either) into your rotations as needed. For health cooldowns, you have the big Touch of Life full heal but don't neglect Master of the Abyss and Creeping Death for a little extra health when needed. In addition, Infestation gives you a significant damage reduction bonus for 8 seconds once every minute -- remember to use it. It's especially useful on fights like Estrode where you can pop it during each Mind Control.
Guides and Suggested Builds by Boss
This section is not intended to be a detailed strategy breakdown of each boss, but instead what the TANK needs to know specifically. Look elsewhere for general fight mechanics, I highly recommend Veev's website http://www.riftstrats.com. With the release of 1.6, one build can be used to tank every encounter in the game so I'm deleting recommended builds from the per-boss strategies. Individual boss strategies may list out of date skills not present in current builds -- simply replace as necessary. I'll update them at some point.
1. Drowned Halls
Assault Commander Jorb
There are two methods of tanking this boss based on personal preference, either by kiting him or by flipping him. I prefer to use the flipping method. Whenever he summons a player into melee range, run directly THROUGH the boss (do not run AROUND him) to the other side at the same time as any melee players do the same thing starting from the opposite side. Executing properly will prevent any cleaves from hitting anyone but you.
As a main tank, pull the boss to the back of room to start and slowly pull clockwise around the edge staying 180 degrees away from your off tank. Let the off tank lead the movement -- when you see him move you move. As the off tank, pull the add to where you enter the room and wait for the first seacap spawn. After it run 120 degrees clockwise for the second seacap spawn, then again for the third. Watch for extra large adds to spawn and pick them up. Use Commands when appropriate. Alternatively, try this excellent strategy posted by forum member Methadras:
The best way to tank this boss is to pull him into the stairwell that the players start in and gets blocked off. Have the tank put his back against the barrier in the corner and tank him there. Then pull the add to the center of the bottom of the stairs. This effectively keeps the seacaps to migrate to the add and you don't have to kite him all around the room in the hopes of picking of the seacaps. Then when the second add pops out, dps the first add down right there at the bottom of the center of the stairwell. Rinse and repeat.
Tank and spank, interrupting at the proper time if you are in the interrupt rotation (since recent nerfs only 2 people in rotation are required). Save Singularity for if you think an interrupter is going to miss -- it will allow you to survive a cast if you have enough gear. Execute the proper movement during the whirlpool and water ring phases. During whirlpool phase you CAN melee the boss to keep your threat up, simply strafe in the proper direction while keeping your camera pointed at the boss. Seacaps are immune to force taunts, just have your DPS kill them.
High Priestess Hydriss
At the start, pull when the patrol is at the front to get him and 3 melee mobs. Wait a few seconds before Rift Summoning the caster in one of the two back groups to you and picking up the two melee as they run past. Once you are down to 3-4 mobs alive, face pull the remaining group and Shock Burst to get the caster to follow you back into the melee (Rift Summon will not be off cooldown if your group DPS is high enough). As Hydriss activates, point her to the side of the area. Pick up the dragon when it comes down the stairs and use Singularity to help out the healers while the dragon is alive. On hive phases, adds are immune to force taunts but will respond to threat so spam those Spotter's Orders and Ragestorms.
2. Gilded Prophecy
Anrak the Foul
Point the boss in your group's chosen direction (I do it with the head facing into the cliff) and wait for a tail strike. When it starts casting, run straight forward, through the boss, to behind him (he will not turn while casting). When the cast finishes return to your initial position. When the second tail strike begins casting, again run through. At this time the second tank should force taunt the boss and HE returns to your position while you stay behind. Continue alternating tanks every other tail strike in this fashion. IMPORTANT NOTE: Turn off Battlefield Awareness when adds spawn! Accidentally getting an add on either tank will cause a wipe if your group does not over-gear the content due to stacking debuffs. Let the DPS handle the adds.
This fight should be solo tanked, contrary to what many people believe. Dodge mechanics with the rest of your raid until the add spawns. When it does, simply pick up the add and move away from the boss with it. The boss will continue casting on you while you tank the add, and since all DPS should be targeting the add you should not lose aggro on the boss during this time. Return to melee range of the boss once the add is dead. When he begins casting a boulder on you, use Singularity.
As the main tank, simply tank and spank the boss picking up crystals when appropriate. As the off tank, be sure to grab all adds each phase and hold them until the player with the shovel gets rid of them. Ragestorm and Spotter's Order are your friends. Use Commands when appropriate.
Tank and spank the boss. Interrupt if you are not reflecting his casts, otherwise pray that your reflecting mage doesn't screw up. Singularity is best used when running from place to place on this fight as your healers may not be able to keep you up while moving (especially if one is crystaled at the time). At the last phase of the fight, make sure you are tanking the adds as near to the base of the stairs as possible to stop them from healing the boss. Don't go into melee range to dodge his big AoE nukes, simply pop Singularity and take it like a man. It only deals ~3k damage with Singularity up, ~6k without it.
3. Greenscale's Blight
As the main tank, just remember to get out of the way of his AoE casts and kite through pools at the proper time based on how your raid positions them. As the off tank, pick up all the adds and tank them off to the side somewhere. In later phases you are in charge of interrupting Fae Barrage on the big fairies. My guild only has one big fairy spawn during the fight due to our high DPS, but if you get a second fairy assign a DPS to interrupt the second one that spawns. Pop Commands as necessary.
Spank him in the middle and dodge bombs. In the last phase have your raid stack up in the middle, and make sure everyone knows that the boss does not cleave! Standing directly on top of the tank is perfectly fine and in fact beneficial. Make sure you do not ever get hit by bombs in this encounter -- the tank getting punted off to the side a single time can easily cause wipes especially in the last phase.
As either tank, just spank your assigned werewolf. It IS possible for the tank to be called out of the room in this encounter. Save your cooldowns for if this happens, you will be out of range of your healers with the boss attacking you for a few seconds. One Aleria herself activates the two tanks can switch when one of them gets the incoming healing debuff, but most guilds just ignore this debuff altogether.
If your guild is new to this encounter I recommend using 4 tanks for this encounter, but reduce to 3 as soon as you can. 2 tanks is doable but not necessary by any means. As the main tank, just dodge the boss's AoE casts. If you are assigned to the reborn Duke, make sure to hold aggro while kiting out of purple goo on the ground. As any tank make sure to keep the boss and any adds well away from each other. Off-tanks should be assigned one to wolves and one to trees for the second phase of the fight.
As the main tank, save Singularity and Fusion of Flesh for breaths when needed. On air phases you should be tanking all four small adds (depending on your guild's strategy). As the off tank, stand in a puddle at the start of the encounter and run through Strangling Plants to kill them. Cleanse yourself every time your skill is off cooldown, and MAKE SURE your healers know NEVER to cleanse you during the fight. On air phases you should pick up the large add and position him directly under Greenscale (look for the pets that will invariably still be attacking the boss during the air phase). After Noxious Bracken begin spawning, the off-tank should use Sergeant's Order to move any that spawn under the boss away.
4. River of Souls
At the start of the fight wait for 5 stacks of the debuff then switch. After that tanks should switch whenever their stacks drop off. Whichever tank does not currently have the boss should be sure to pick up the wisp that spawns during transformed phases. This fight can create awkward positioning depending on when the boss finishes teleporting between the two players you should have spread out at range -- just stay cool and adjust positioning of yourself and your raid if need be.
As the main tank, simply spank the boss. Back up when he goes into the air so he chases you immediately upon landing. As the tertiary tank simply grab the add that spawns every time the boss lands and play with him off to the side. Pop Commands on air phases. As the off tank, you should have the entire raid stacked on you for coffin add spawns. Create a macro:
#show (skill of your choice) suppressmacrofailures target Ancient Defiler mark 1
Plutonus the Immortal
Start the fight by backing up towards one of the pillars around the edge of the arena (but not TO it!). Wait for two Ciphers to go off (it's the only thing that damages your raid... just watch the HP bars to catch the second one), then put your back up to a pillar. Singularity is useful now to reduce some spike damage. Once he breaks the pillar, move towards another, wait for two ciphers, blow it up. Repeat until you're approaching 50% (this should take 3 or maybe 4 pillars), then move the boss to the middle of the arena. You should move him once in preparation for 50% phase, then wait in the same spot through the 40% and 30% transitions, then move for a second time to your final location prior to the 20% and 10% transitions. This will maximize your raid DPS by not having to reposition much.
Alsbeth the Discordant
Use 3 tanks for this encounter. This fight is fairly complicated to tank so I'll break it down by phase.
Phase 1: Ground 1. Tank #1 on boss. Tanks #2 and #3 on adds, using Rift Summon to bring any casters into the boss. All three tanks should be standing in the same spot to prevent cleaves facing every direction.
Phase 2: Air 1. Tanks split to 3 different circles. Tank #1 to Black add circle, Tank #2 to White add circle, Tank #3 to Grey add circle. Pick up your add if it spawns and any wisps that float near you. The two tanks without big adds should grab any of the add trios that spawn in the middle during this phase as well as any loose wisps and group everything up in the middle for later AoE. Tank #3 remember to interrupt your add's casts!
Phase 3: Air-->Ground Transition 1. Tank #2 should pick up the boss when she lands, Tanks #1 and #3 on any adds. Once stacks of debuff drop off of Tank #1, #1 picks up the boss again and #2 switches back to adds.
Phase 4 to ?: Repeat 1-3 as many times as required to get the boss to 20%.
Phase X: Once she full heals, Tank #2 should pick up the boss. Tank #1 and #2 stay in front, Tank #3 move BEHIND the boss (first time tanks should be split up at all during ground phases). Tank #3 grab all wisp adds -- have your raid run to #3 if they get any on them. Tank #3 should be spamming 1-point Spotter's constantly. Tanks #1 and #2 switch aggro on the boss periodically to keep stacks low. All three watch out for the AoE under her -- it will one-shot tanks if you get hit. Move out as the cast bar nears completion then come back in.
5. Hammerknell Fortress
On the pull my guild brings the boss towards the front-left and moves clockwise throughout the fight. Other guilds may start in a different location or move a different direction -- do what you're used to. In any case, tanks should switch at 4 stacks of the debuff and then whenever stacks drop off for the rest of the fight. At 75%, be sure to keep your melee out of purple goo on the ground -- drag the boss backwards more than you think you have to in order to be safe. If you need to move the boss backwards out of tar while he is casting Demonic Blast don't be afraid to leave melee range before the cast finishes. Nobody should be standing near you anyway and a blast hitting you at ranged is mostly harmless. At 50%, watch for interrupts. At 25% use some extra AoE threat to grab as many adds as possible, but your normal Spotter's should get most of it.
I solo tank this boss - many guilds use two but I find it unnecessary. This boss is definitely doable with one tank and you get a nice raid DPS boost from the extra player you free up. It's certainly challenging, but incredibly fun. Tank the boss so its back is to the add path leading in (so you face the adds as they come in). With force taunts being off cooldown after 1.5 patch, it's simple to pick up adds that are running in. Keep your camera zoomed out as far as possible and just click on anything that comes in followed by a force taunt to grab it. The only tricky spot is when a butcher and imp come in at the exact same time from opposite sides -- prioritize picking up the butcher first. The imp doesn't do much damage so if it gets a hit or two off on a raid member before you can grab it (either from residual Spotter's aggro or a second force taunt after 8 seconds) it's no big deal. On laser beam phases, keep an eye on the road coming in to see if any adds will arrive during the phase. If they do, just position yourself so you're in range to grab them as they come. Spam Ragestorm and Spotter's while running to hold aggro on any adds chasing you. Note that the beam takes about 10 seconds to complete a full rotation and you can run faster than it with bard speed buff up. That means if you are running right behind the beam and see an add coming you can sit in one place for 7-8 seconds, grab the add, build some aggro, and start running again before the beam catches back up to you. As the beam dissipates move to your tanking spot and wait for the skeletons to run up from behind you. This part can be tricky, but in order to minimize damage coming from you at this point, WAIT until the skeletons have run PAST you and then throw Spotter's immediately. If done properly all the skeletons will be in front of you, lined up nicely with the boss/butchers/imps so you can block all incoming attacks and your melee DPS can cleave it all. Stay cool and don't screw up during this fight -- if you're solo tanking one mistake can wipe your raid pretty easily. If you're unsure about your skills there's always the safety net of using a second tank for adds (of course your DPS will need to be higher to compensate).
As the main tank, chill out and spank the boss down. You may get feared, just reposition as normal. Other than that it's an incredibly boring boss to tank. As the delver tank things are a little more interesting -- just watch for them to run in, grab them and pull them off to a corner. You should have 1-2 AoE DPS with you to help kill them. As far as excavator tanking goes -- leave that to another class (Clerics work well) or create a gimmicky spec with some Riftblade for Freeze Armor. Alternatively, this fight can be done with only 2 tanks as my guild has done recently. Have somebody, preferably a warrior with Spotter's, go play with the boss and the rest of the raid while the second tank deals with all the adds (except the squirrel-able adds, obviously still need a mage with you for that). The off-tank should just pick everything up and tank it at the top of the ramp. Keep a dedicated puri healer on you, as well as two rogues with 0-point Sab for Adhesive Bomb and an -Icar for extra DPS and heals. The two rogues cycle their Bombs on you, which will keep the Excavators with a permanent slow debuff if done properly. The rogues (and the -Icar) AoE the rest of the time to knock down the Delvers and help the Excavators die a little faster.
Tank damage is fairly minimal in this encounter, I like having the bonus raid DPS of Cutting Distraction -- it especially helps nuking down adds quicker. As a tank there's not a whole lot going on in this fight, just remember to move to the side of the boss on the third breath each time. Remember to make use of Infestation on Grug near the end of the 10% tower phase!
King Molinar and Prince Dollin
The tank should pull Molinar to the third pair of pillars counting from the throne (second pair counting from the entrance door) and move back and forth from pillar to pillar on each Cursed Blows. Dollin tank uses first pair of pillars, raid ranged players use second. When purple squares appear, adjust your kite path as minimally as required. It is better to cut across the corner of a purple square spawning in the middle than it is to circle around behind a pillar and out of line of sight of your healers. The warrior tank should be responsible for interrupting (or not) Frightening Shout throughout the first half of the fight, make sure other players are NOT interrupting this cast so you can control when it goes off. When a Revenant spawns, try to get a Spotter's up on it for your DPS but make sure you don't miss an interrupt while doing this. At 40%, a DPS should be assigned to Shout while the tank and one other DPS interrupt all Consuming Essence. Note that you need one ranged interrupter on Consuming Essence -- in a couple hours of attempts prior to us adding a ranged player to Molinar for interrupts we had two RNG deaths from a knockback from Dollin kicking all players out of melee range of Molinar at the exact instant he started casting Consuming Essence, resulting in a wipe.
This fight is a simple tank and spank -- the dangerous parts of the fight are when she has a Mage with Pyro soul stolen at the same time as a Mind Control hits. When this occurs, sit with 3 AP ready to blow Singularity the instant she uses the fire breath. Interrupt Chastise when she has a cleric soul, and help your archon in purging Rage of the North and Mistress of the Rift. If your raid is in the proper specs there should be no adds or other mechanics to worry about, and you as the tank will never be mind controlled.
My guild uses two main tanks and an off-tank. As a main tank, switch at 2 stacks initially and whenever they drop off after that. When you use a tome the tanks should switch immediately after adds spawn so one tank gets most of the adds and the other a few adds + the boss. Pop cooldowns on these add spawns, but save your big ones for sub-30%. At 40% start interrupting the boss's casts (or don't if your raid is reflecting them). You should use your third tome at about 32-33% so Ichor begins after the final round of adds. Have your tome clicker jump down to help out and hope you can burn the boss before she one-shots your tanks. Save all defensive cooldowns for around 10-15% on the boss -- chain Singularity into Fusion of Flesh and a Touch of Life after an Ichor hit. As the off-tank, simply grab the single adds that spawn continuously and bring them into the middle for your DPS to kill. Interrupt Arc of the Night -- there should never be more than one add alive so the tank should be able to handle interrupts on his own. If you are dying repeatedly on this fight, find more Death Resistance!
This boss's breath is a fairly gimmicky mechanic where it is a Physical damage Spell. This means you can block it, and Hardened Will (Paladin) and Crest Mastery (Reaver) work to mitigate it, but Void (Void Knight) does not. In addition the damage can be split between two players which is why you should use a second tank. Move the boss as needed to make room for more Contract drops, ending up at the path leading to the boss. The main tank will never be targeted with Contracts, but the off tank can be. Make sure your raid is stacked up enough to keep the two tanks inside the blue Contract bubble, otherwise you will not be able to hold aggro (my guild has a rogue pulling 3.2k DPS and a warrior pulling 3k DPS on the fight). Tanking this fight is heavily RNG-based -- stack as much block as possible and hope for the best.
This fight is fairly simple as a tank, just stand in the middle and tank him. When a porter spawns, head to him early so you don't waste too much time getting the beam and bringing it back to him. Bring a lot of water resist -- I sit at 337 raid buffed with a potion and still get hit for ~3k a tick of his beam and ~4k on an auto-attack spell spam.
NOTE: I do NOT use a water resist sigil as a tank on this fight. Tank damage is mostly physical. Tanking melee side of the encounter (left for most guilds) is fairly easy. Phase 1 is a simple tank and spank. For Phase 2, have your group move to the piles of rocks along the side. Have a DPS WARRIOR make the pulls of the three mobs, this will prevent adds from ever spawning on this phase. Phases 3 and 4 (focus and miniboss) are again simple tank and spanks -- be ready for adds at 30-40% of the mob's HP on Phase 4. For Phase 5 (Darktide), again just tank and spank. Be aware of Surge and kite the boss when it happens -- I just make a loop around the half of the platform closest to the door. Try not to get too close to your casters.
<Disclaimer: Have not successfully killed boss. I've reached deep into Phase 4.>
NOTE: I again do not use a water sigil on this fight, as tank damage is about 80% Physical.
Phase 1: Jornaru and Adds
Main tank (recommend normal warrior tank OR rogue): Spank Jornaru. Watch out for waves.
Off tank #1 (Recommend WOTM tanking spec (38 reaver/21 paragon/7 paladin): On the first add spawn, keep one Apostle and one Deepclaw separated from the rest of the AoE pile. When the OTHER deepclaw reaches 25% HP, bring your two guys into the mix. The Apostle should get a damage taken buff, nuke it down. Keep your deepclaw alive. On the second add spawn, keep everything in the AoE pile until the deepclaw you saved dies. Then, pull one deepclaw out of the pile and save it for Phase 2. If you're in WOTM tank you can ignore waves.
Off tank #2 (recommend cleric): Keep every add that off tank #1 isn't dealing with in the AoE pile on Jornaru. Watch out for waves.
Phase 2: Lashers, Stingers, and Adds
Main tank: Tank Lasher spawns #2 and #4. Can also grab some adds if you're having troubles with them. Throw taunts on Stingers that happen to be in range of you.
Off tank #1: Tank Lasher spawns #1 and #3. Can also grab some adds if you're having troubles with them. Throw taunts on Stingers that happen to be in range of you.
Off tank #2: Tank all adds, keeping them next to the active lasher for AoE DPS.
Phase 3: Lashers and Akylios
Main tank: Tank Lasher #2 on the transition and on all submerged subphases.
Off tank #1: Play with Akylios. Make sure to stay in melee range 100% of the time except during breath casts. Tank Lasher spawn #1 (peeling it off of main tank probably) on submerged subphases.
Off tank #2: If you're a cleric, bust out healing mode. If not, sit around, twiddle your thumbs, and wait for the next phase.
Phase 4: Lashers, Akylios, and Jornaru
Main tank: Tank Jornaru next to whatever DPS target is currently active (Akylios or lasher)
Off tank #1: Akylios and lasher #1, same as Phase 3. You can ignore waves if you're in WotM.
Off tank #2: Lasher #2. Can go heal mode or twiddle thumbs mode with Akylio's head up.
6. Rise of the Phoenix
Easiest tanking fight in the game. Tank'n'spank, no mechanics that you as the tank have to worry about.
Stay in the middle of the room and do your best to keep the boss out of the fire circles -- not so much for yourself as the damage is extremely minimal on you, but so that your melee DPS can have maximum uptime on the boss. Make sure you are interrupting Inferno Lash! You should have your cooldown available for every cast, but have at least one other raid member also interrupting in case you miss one -- most often will happen while moving the boss. As a warrior, you should never be doing offtanking duty on this boss (should be a cleric), but if you really must then I'd recommend using some sort of PvP spec such as 38 vk/28 champion so you can have reasonable DPS with your threat.
This fight is a bit interesting as a tank since the boss cleaves. In addition to dodging all the mechanics that everyone in the raid has to dodge, you need to do it without flipping the boss into anybody's face and getting them one-shot. I recommend that each time you have to move for a tether you turn the boss the same direction, so the melee know what's happening every time. As a tank you can survive for a really long time on the tether, so don't worry about taking a straight line to your location. Take the path that goes through the least people in your raid. Once you've moved to your tether spot, you should tank the boss there until the next Incinerate cast to prevent excess movement. When the cast goes off, you can move the boss back to your normal tanking spot as everyone leaves the bubble without fear of cleaves.
High Priest Arakhurn
Be careful of positioning on this fight. You can actually be in melee range and NOT be in range of your big AoE threat skills -- Promise of Steel/Cyclone Strike/Ragestorm. The only way to hit with these skills is to stand on the very tip of the rock outcropping. Standing here then makes it a bit tricky to get behind a rock in time for the big AoE attacks he does. The trick is to watch the lava -- once you see it start flaming more back up to max melee range, then start running as soon as she puts you down from the lift. Ideally you should be right next to your rock when the cast starts. MAKE SURE you take one tick of damage from the AoE before ducking behind the rock, and try to avoid taking two ticks. If the option is zero or two though, go for two. When the AoE finishes, make sure to get back in line of sight ASAP, then execute your tank swap. The adds on this fight are simple to deal with, whoever is not currently tanking the boss simply pulls the bird behind your rock and waits for the AoE for everyone to come nuke it down. If the bird is still up for some reason when the AoE finishes, the tank who was previously on the boss picks up the bird and the tank previously on the bird picks up the boss. Final note on this fight: the current tank will never be turned into the fire elemental from Slow Burn stacks, and neither will the off-tank in Phase 2 of the fight. I have seen the off-tank be the elemental during Phase 1 though.
With any Warrior raid tanking, the first stats to consider are Toughness and Hit. For Hammerknell you need 200 toughness (which is the cap, but is the minimum) and 300-320 Hit (320 being the cap). For all other raids, the numbers are 150 Toughness and 200-220 Hit. When adding runes to gear, first add a toughness rune to your chest if required, then add Hit runes to gear if required (keep in mind you can get 45 Hit from my Paladin Hybrid spec if you adjust it!), then add stat runes to other pieces.
As a rule of thumb, you should order gear by:
Armor = Endurance > Strength > Block > Dexterity > Parry = Dodge. To figure out upgrades between similar pieces of gear, consult a BiS spreadsheet. The best one I know of is found at https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/...jdlUGFiQ2VsWmc -- Rain's BiS updated to 1.7.
In addition, certain fights in Hammerknell will require resist sigils (source machines for you lousy Defiant). For earlier dungeons you can get by with just a standard BiS tank sigil, but in Hammerknell you will need a Water resist sigil (preferably from the event, which will net you a bonus +20 resist) for some upper floor fights. Garau is the most important to have Water resist -- Darktide and Akylios will often be more useful to tank with a normal BiS sigil.
I hope this guide was useful to someone reading it. If anyone has suggestions for changes or things I missed, please feel free to post. I will update this guide based on suggestions.
02/10/12: First version posted to BlueDots. Some minor edits, including a recommended build change, moving a couple points around in Reaver.
02/08/12: Added RotP info.
02/06/12: Finally updated rest of Hammerknell, as well as updating BiS link.
12/07/11: Changed preferred BiS list, added info on Garau.
11/18/11: Begun update for 1.6, added spec. Individual encounter strat changes to come.
11/15/11: Added information on Estrode and Grugonim, updated Vladmal for two-tank strat
10/18/11: Added information on Molinar