Friday, January 29, 2010

Look! Over here! Not over there!

This post brought to us from Holly, my favourite Canadian (see what I did thar?) and the most cheerful person I know, even more than At. 

Let's talk about tanking... and PUG's. Let's talk about tanking and PUG's.

First I'd like to say, I'm not a great tank. I'm a good tank. I know how to do my job, but honestly? Some days I'm just mashing buttons and running around like a headless chicken. I have good gear; not stellar but some great gear.

I know good tanks when I see them... and there have been quite a few. I remember wanting to be Haneen for the longest time.

I recognize bad tanks when I see them... and that's because I've seen good tanks.

I'm a tank. It's all I ever wanted to be and I strive to improve, to get feedback and to accept constructive criticism. I have a mage and a rogue that I fool around with, but I'm a tank at heart. Don't ask Holly to DPS, you'll see a grown woman cuddling her blankee in the corner and whimpering.

That being said, I had the pleasure of experiencing and OMFG. WORST. PUG. EVER. dungeon last night.

Let me start at the beginning. I was late getting home. I log on, say hi to the guildies and they're all busy. This I can handle, I figure I'll herb some and grab someone later for my random heroic, bring on the frost badges, run. Then I get a little bored with my healer husband out of town. I can PUG it, I think, I'm a tank... everyone wants a tank. I get compliments when I PUG, I hear things like "thank heavens, a geared tank". It's good for my ego and it's just a random dungeon. Who hasn't run every dungeon in Northrend at least 20 times before this random dungeon finder thing changed our lives?? Don’t answer that, it was rhetorical.

We pulled The Nexus; a baby dungeon, even on heroic. 20 minutes and I'm outta here, I'm thinking. Even with brand spankin' new 80's, The Nexus should be a cake walk. First couple of pulls and I'm feeling even more confident, pretty good DPS, mage is a bit out of control, but we're handling it. We get through the Hall of Stasis without any casualties. We're heading up The Librarium and just outside the entrance to Grand Magus Telestra. Pull and down the first group at the top of the ramp. No pat (mage slayer with dogs, you know the ones) so we head across the way to the group on the other side. ALWAYS take out the mage ascendant first, that bitch polymorphs. Well I no more than turn my head when the Mage Slayer pats into my druid and my mage. Before I have a chance to finish off the first four (thank heavens for the rogue and warlock in our group) and charge my way over there, the druid and the mage are dead. So we finish off the patrol and wait for people to come back. I want to say here, we didn't wipe...we lost two people.

This is where things get a little weird. The druid, the healer, says... "Can we speed this up; I've got to go in 12 minutes". WTF? I'm not sure how to respond to this. First, who gets in a group when they can't stay? I know that shit happens, mom calls, the cat catches fire and people sometimes have to leave without warning but to only plan to be there for a limited time? Inconsiderate bewb. Second, I can roll with the punches as good as any, but her body is still laying there after 3 minutes and she's (her character was female so we'll go with that) not back in the instance yet. For someone with a time crunch they're sure taking their sweet time getting back in the game. So I say "Let me see if I understand this. You want us to go faster but you're laying there waiting to be rezzed?” This is where it gets fuzzy for me, I'll admit, because it got kind of surreal. She comes back with some comment about "who would rez her (right, she's the only one with the power but why else would she be taking so long?) and she was actually contemplating leaving and did I have any more snide comments to make?". Well ladies and gentleman, let me tell you, that got my back up. She's on a time crunch and just spent 3 of her 12 minutes contemplating leaving and I was the one being unreasonable? So I said, and I quote, "Go to hell, you try and find a geared tank who'll put up with your shit" and I left. As I left I noticed her last comment about how I couldn’t keep anything off her…

Hasty? Maybe, but it's a frackin' PUG and these are not people I care about one iota. I was prepared to put in my 20 minutes, get my badges, say my thanks and run. It's a game and I'm here for a good time, there are other PUG's out there. Moving away from a druid with an attitude seemed like common sense.

Here's where it got insane. She (still a female toon) whispers me on my server (I know she was on Shattered Halls) about how I’m not that geared and not that good a tank. Are you fucking kidding me? I whisper back “Says You” and “Leave me alone” and then I put her on ignore. It’s got to be the healer right? So I start telling officers about what just happened. These people are my friends and they’re going to tell me if I’m off in my own world or should have behaved differently. They’re vindicating my side when I get whispered by another female toon with a similar name to the one I just ignored.

OK. This is just psycho now. She’s going on about how badly I behaved and how pathetic I was. I remember responding with “I’m pathetic? I didn’t just create a new toon on a different server to give a stranger shit”. She effectively ignored this and accused me of being selfish. “Don’t you have to go yet?” I’m thinking her 12 minutes have to be up by now. My GM wants to know her name so that she can straighten her out. I’ve had enough and have put her on ignore again.

She then proceeds to talk to my GM for 30 minutes! No, you can’t make shit this ridiculous up. Alas, back me up here, honey. (It's true! -Alas) Alas is in a rebellious mood and spends the 30 minutes making fun of her. I still can’t get over that. THIRTY (30) MINUTES. Apparently I’m leading Alas around by the nose making her believe I’m a good tank. It’s true. I’ll say it here, please sit down ‘cause I want you all to know that I just faked beating the bosses in Ulduar and TOC and that I’m a phony. You all have carried me for the past 3 years.

I forgot to mention. The reason she took 3 minutes to get back in Nexus? She got lost. She couldn’t find the entrance.

Also, if I was such a good tank why was I running randoms and not running with my awesome guildies? Turns out there’s only room for one tank in FoS. If she’s so great, why was she running randoms? Huh? Nub?

Anyway. There’s a reason its midnight and I’m listening to Sugarland’s “It happens” over and over. I’ve got to write this down before I forget. I’ve got to get this out!

Tanking is a thankless job but I love it. If someone dies, it’s my fault. If someone pulls agro, I must not have been doing my job. My hunter husband knows I’ll let him die if he pulls agro (we give a whole new meaning to “wife agro” in my house). If the group succeeds it’s all thanks to the uber DPS. But WOW, there is nothing quite like the rush of being the first one to run into a fight with the rest of the guild behind you. Better than any drug, or sex, or party or organized cupboard I can tell you. If I die, but we get the boss down, I know I did my job. If I don’t die, it’s even better.

Tanking a PUG though? It’s work. Hard work. I want a pug puppy but I don’t know if I can do it. Not with people like that druid healer out there.

Thanks for letting me rant. I’m Hollybrynn and I just want a hug.


  1. /hug

    I have tanked a few lowbie pugs on my baby druid, and my experience has been all good thus far. I two trips through Deadmines, there were no wipes and only a few deaths that totally were not my fault.

    Other day though, things almost got a little snippy. Had a mage, hunter, and dps-warrior. Mage was doing good, but dps was a little low. Warrior and hunter had high dps, but they were always attacking mobs that I was not concentrating on, and hunter's pet clearly had auto-growl on.

    I don't mind the warrior single-targeting another mob, because I know he needs rage, and he can take a little abuse, but when your dps is so spread out, it kind of sucks. It also makes the healer work a little more. So, while in the goblin room (which can be the nastiest part of DM), I say "please concentrate dps on main target." Of course, the warrior responds "Then pull faster." I let it go, actually picked up the pace a little, and we still had a good run.

    Bottom line, stupid people are stupid. I try to shrug off as much shit as possible. One great thing about the Dungeon Finder is that you probably will never see these people again.

  2. Talking to that person was fun btw. My favorite bit was when I said something like "Okay, princess." And they said, "Oh, real mature to call me names." I was like, "Name calling? I thought 'princess' meant that you are a special and delicate snowflake." They admitted they had to laugh at that part.

    I get the idea we were two strangers using each other to blow off a little extra steam. Oh, dirty!

  3. OMG! I'm published!

    Thanks for the hug and the support. I'm still laughing today which is a good thing. This is the only PUG that I've ever walked away shaking my head.

  4. That's not true at all, I love a good tank. You hold aggro just fine.

    You enable me to put only 1 point in threat reduction in each of my specs.

    I hate when I have to hold back, but with you I dont worry so much.

  5. I don't have to hold back either, but I have feign death. :)

    That being said, I don't have to hold back in the 25 seconds while FD is on cooldown. Hee Hee.