If there’s one thing I’ve noticed lately on the Space Dock, it’s the lack of players picking up the Tanking role.
The lack of Tanks is nothing new to MMOs. Ever since the triangle of Tanks-Healers-DPS was established, the role of Tank has been picked up by only a small percentage of the players.
Why are Tanks so scarce?
I’ve been pondering this question lately because I’m looking for another Tank to fill out my Operations roster. There are many reasons why players don’t want to fill the Tank role. Reasons range from the perceived role of leadership in the group, to lack of understanding of how to effectively do it. The one point I keep landing on myself recently is numbers. Big, big numbers flashing across your screen. Players like to see the big critical hit numbers flash on the screen.
That led me to think about what I like to see on my UI when tanking. I personally like to see the word Dodge appear over my Avatar. I love to see the shield generator energize around my character. When I mitigate an in-game attack it makes the Tank role so sweet I can taste it.
You’ve probably been in a Flash Point group when your tank, be it a friend or stranger, engage an insane amount of enemies. Why would they do that? In my experience it’s simply because they can. The same way a DPS member of the group will cause a excessive amount of damage, an experienced tank will pull more and more enemies to prove they can do it. A tank that pulls more than they should is dancing with the enemy. They dance with more and more enemies because it causes that desired ‘DODGE’ to flash across their UI. Their shield generator seems to never stop energizing because of the amount of shielded attacks.
This is an appealing roll to only a few because it takes hidden front end work. A player who enjoys the Tank role has educated themselves on the statistics and mechanics behind their chosen Tank Class. Before the Flash Point is loaded, a Tank has tweaked their Stats and Skills to provide maximum mitigation. Maximum mitigation lets them dance with more and more enemies without causing unwanted stress on the DPS and Healing team members.
While a Tank is engaging the enemies, they will successively activate their class mitigation cool-downs one after another. When tanking, if your mitigation abilities are not on cool-down you are leaving damage mitigation on the table. A good tank leaves nothing on the table when it comes to avoiding damage.
What a tank like to see is special, and the role is filled by a select few players on the Space Dock. SWTOR is ripe for players to pick up the role of tanking because so few choose it. My next post will be focused on how a player can become a respected and sought after Tank playing Star Wars: The Old Republic.
You can find the Silverstrike Legacy on the Bastion’s Vaiken Space Dock.