Why Are You Tanking?

So addressing the question above, why ARE you still tanking?

Do you ever stop to think about it? Maybe wonder about the purpose and reason for why it is that you do what you do? Maybe you should take an afternoon to consider it, you know, head over to a nearby beach and sit on a rock outcropping and listen to the waves go in and out while the sun goes down and ponder why it is that you’re choosing to tank in a virtual environment with pixelated monsters and rewards.

Or, you know, you could not.

I think that’s it’s a question that we all eventually face.

It usually comes at one of those “I’m so tired of doing this,” phases that most of us go through if we’ve been tanking for a long time.

Eventually, you start to wonder why you put yourself through all that hassle to be the best tank you can be for a whole bunch of strangers when you look around the raid and it seems (to you) that almost nobody else is putting in even half of the effort that you are.

Tanks usually end up feeling more responsible for the raid than they actually are. It’s like the position of safeguarding their virtual lives saddles you with the feeling of responsibility that you’re not sure you wanted but now that you have it, you’ll be damned if you drop the ball.

So you do your research, figure out the boss fights and how to min/max your gear, reforgings and talent trees to give your raid the best chance of success. You learn to be a leader, learn to explain what it is you need and when you need it to your raid or party. You spend your time trying to figure out what the best way to transmogrify your gear is so that your raid feels more comforted by your presence and feels confident in you as their meatshield (I recommend the tier 4!).

You do all this because you care. You do it because you feel like you owe it to someone to be the best you can be when you’re tanking.

Or you do it because you find it fun and amusing.

Or you do it because you want that extra challenge, that little frisson that responsibility can give you.

So, why are you tanking?

You should ask yourself this question.

And if you come up with an answer, you should let me know, share with the rest of us.

There might be those among us who feel like they don’t have an answer and you can help them regain their lost faith by sharing yours.

That can be your good deed for the day.


  1. I tank because.. I used to be a mage, and something of an aggro monster. I guess I didn’t like waiting for the tank.. bad me.. so I decided to actually be a tank. I like to set the pace. I like being up front.
    I like charging in, and asking everyone to follow. There’s a joy in that blind faith that they will actually follow.

  2. something :) says:

    i tank because i see so many tanks in hc that cant do a good job and i can do better and i menage to do better then the others who fail. and i like to tank it is FUN FUN FUN!!!! :D did try dps i got sleepy and slacked.. did try healing it was quite fun but still not the kick i was out to get. and i did go back to tanking and i guess it is that i like most. and when being first in the group charging in and rend thunderclap i get to see the big bosses first covering my screenm, that is pretty nice :). and i spell bad.. sorry ^^ and i am after the fun i had in vanilla when i did tank instances and raids :). i miss that.. *sentimental sighs..*

  3. i like instant ques.

    …what? its true.

    but seriously i feel like i generally have to think about each encounter a little more like do i get a cc here and a marker there ooh and ill pull from this angle and the dps will be over there etc etc. when im dpsing i feel like im just doing my bit and everyone else is doing theres tanking i feel like im watching and seeing everything.

  4. I haven’t been on WoW for a particularly long time. I have a handful of characters but the ones I’ve actually stuck with have been my tank specc’d classes. I think I partly agree with “something :)” up there that it’s painful to watch people destroy your efforts in a Dungeon by faffing around or leaving everyone to die.

    I also like to feel like i’m a decent leader.

    Plus it’s awesome to wear sexy plate armour and massive weapons and sheilds rather than staves,

    Awesome blog too! x

  5. I always just had a spark with tanking. After picking up the game near the middle of WotLK I automatically rolled as a Warrior Tank, and never looked back. The feel of being the guy in the front of the group, leading everybody in, being the unofficial leader makes me feel amazing. I haven’t ever felt as important to the group when I play a DPS or healer, as how I do whenever I’m tanking. Instant ques are nice also.

  6. i love tanking it is the bomb .. i only play tanks got 4 of them only other none tank class is my shaman that i used to be able to tank kara when it kame out, i want i a tanking shaman spec.. the chalenge of know the fight .. learing the fight and with difrent tanking classes each fight is difrent, why do i tank to be the best i can be not for any one els. i dont gearup for any one els it is all for my self and my pride.

  7. Even though i started playing during cata, i got really dedicated to the game and my first 85 was a blood dk. After several months, i’m playing a prot warr and i really love it. The reason I am prot warrior is because they look like a big badass meatshield ready to take everything thrown at them, and they’re also a GCD capped spec, with loads of fun involved (unlike boooring palas :S) I like to be the leader of a group, telling people what to do and actually making a big impact. In every try on a boss, i always try my best and always have a set of raid warning macros available for every possible situation on that boss. What I also like is the challenge, the need to get everything perfect and even better (slacking dps, healers pffff) than it’s normally needed. Thus i play a tank, the most challenging role (for me) to play. (I’ve tried healing and dpsing, in both coming up with big numbers and topping recount, but they dont feel as challenging.)