Topic Tuesday - How much HIT do tanks actually need?
Hey guys, this is the start of a weekly section where I'll be exploring random aspects of the game or thoughts I have in general. Each week will be its own topic to dive into. This will be almost entirely my musings on whatever the subject is so you can take it as you will. It won't be based as much on hard data but more how I see it or think about it in game. Look forward to it every Tuesday or until I run out of stuff to talk about (which should be a while).
To start this off I wanted to go over something people ask me all the time so instead of having to answer the question fifty times I can now just link this post. The question if you couldn't guess by the title is "how much hit should I shoot for when gearing up my druid/warrior/whatever tank?" And of course the answer is "it depends!" So why can't I give a straight answer? Let's dive right in.
So what does the stat Hit give tanks? Well obviously it "increases" their hit chance but actually it is reducing their miss chance. Regardless the answer is the same - you will hit the boss more frequently. This is great. Like other key stats you wish you could have it maxed out. For a regular tank with 300 skill you want 9% to max out. If you have 305 skill you only need 6%. The problem with gearing your tank for hit is generally this comes with a drawback of moderately to severely reducing your survival stats because of the weird gear you are choosing. This drawback is exactly why Ony neck, Accuria, and DFT are such sought after pieces for tanks - maximum hit for minimum loss to survival.
Gearing as a tank is a balance between focusing on hit or focusing on survival. You can't have both until late phases. So until then you have to choose: go for hit or go for survival. So why do you want hit in the first place? Well you don't want to miss the mob as much obviously. But apart from your DPS meters which mean virtually nothing as a tank why do you care? The obvious answer is threat. Okay but let's be real here - most guilds don't need a tank that is outputting maximum threat. So what if you are one or two percent lower TPS than perfection? Is that really going to make or break the raid? If yes then you are in an extremely hardcore guild or at least dreaming that you are. In general the answer to this is that a little bit more TPS from hit isn't really that big of a deal. No, what hit actually gives is consistency.
So what do I mean by consistency? RNG can be a real pain sometimes. Now that we know that bosses have a massive 14% parry chance, stack that onto a full amount of miss and you're at almost 1/4 of all hits not happening at all. The chance for two of those to happen in a row is very high, and three in a row will still happen frequently. Three "misses" of an attack is an eternity in a raid, especially if the mob is immune to taunt. Increasing hit decreases the chance of this happening, and that is the real benefit. This is by far the most important for that initial pull where threat is being established and the tanks are getting situated. It's the time where the raid is the most vulnerable as DPS jump in and tanks are expected to have this threat built up to not lose the mob. Having hit reduces the chance that problems occur in that window. Yes it helps overall TPS but what it helps the most is making the initial pull more consistent.
Okay you're sold on maximizing your hit. Glad to hear it. But remember that the more hit you stack, the less survival gear you are now using. So what's the right amount of hit to have? It still depends. You want to stack as much hit as you can that your guild can handle. How much does it matter to have tanks have rock solid threat within seconds of an encounter? How good are the healers? Basically how hardcore is your guild? The more hardcore of a mentality the guild has, the more hit will be important and the less you will need to focus on survival. The more casual the guild, the more general survival will be welcomed.
You need to communicate with the GM, the RL and the tank and healing core to see what the best situation is. Main tanks will need to value hit more than offtanks who are there just to grab random mobs here and there. Regardless you will want to try to get what hit you can but just make sure you aren't stretching yourself thin beyond what your guild can handle. It isn't their fault if you die over and over because you focused too much on hit and not enough on survival if that's the type of guild it is. And if you are stuff as full survival with minimal hit, they just need to know that sometimes you might be telling the DPS to back off for a bit until you actually have the mob under control.
Once we are all into later phases and the gear is generally better then everyone will have access to more hit gear options and will have enough survivability and by that point everyone should be focusing on getting to hit cap. Thankfully for warriors, Tier 3 gear has excellent tanking stats that really helps with this but druids also have gear options that get very close to cap with no loss in survival stats. Guilds should continue to prio Ony head, Accuria, and DFT to tanks if they care about this issue as those three items are uniquely able to help boost tanks early and with less gear survivability compromise than any other early game pieces available.