The vigilant warrior

21st March 2009 – 2.00 pm

There is a neat talented ability called Vigilance that is available to protection warriors. When applied like a buff to another character that character takes 3% less damage, 10% of their generated threat is transferred to the warrior and whenever they take damage the taunt cool-down is refreshed. As a tank my first reaction was that this ability is meant to be used on the group's healer. With all heals generating threat against every mob in combat the 10% threat transference is a handy, if not entirely necessary, way to prevent a stray mob from picking on the healer, with the taunt cool-down refresh allowing any arrant mobs to be peeled off the healer quickly and calmly.

However, putting your vigilant gaze on the healer is not the only way the ability can be put to use. Whilst heals generate threat the amount generated should be manageable, unless the fight starts to go wrong and heals are thrown around the group with gay abandon. Your average DPS class, on the other hand, is a fission reactor of threat forever testing the bounds of control rod placement. Putting Vigilance on the character who tops the damage charts strikes me as a good idea, with 10% of all the threat they generate, and it will be quite a lot, transferred to the warrior. The DPS character will be able to push their damage output higher for longer without drawing aggro and the warrior can cycle through other mobs gaining individual threat without worrying too much about losing it on the main mob.

I'm sure there must be some way to manipulate Vigilance in a raid setting too. I haven't raided since the days of old Naxxramas, but the 40-man groups and the challenges they faced would have lent themselves well to the benefits of Vigilance. With main tanks and off-tanks required for many boss fights, where the tanking duties would need to be swapped several times during the fight for various reasons, having the two warriors buff each other with Vigiliance would allow them to taunt the boss off the other until successful, as each time the target was struck by the mob the cool-down on taunt would be refreshed. I wouldn't be surprised if there were similar situations in the current raid fights.

Whilst Vigiliance may be designed to protect a group's healer there are certainly other uses available to a vigilant warrior, which could boost the efficiency of a group without diminishing the warrior's effectiveness.

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