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An issue many players have faced within Rift is what seems to be a lack of tanks. While classes like DPS seem to be very common (which they are), tanks are much more rarely seen. Here we'll look at some reasons why!

Players Often Blame the Tanks For Everything

When it really comes down to it, it's usually the tank that takes the blame for everything that goes wrong. This can range from losing threat to dying. Case-in-point, a few months ago I was parsing a group in Foul Cascade (normal) that was having issues because our tank kept dying. The others in the group kicked the tank and replaced him, and the new one had the same issue. Upon going back through parses, I found that it wasn't the tank that was the problem, but the healer, who was doing below 150 HPS. This is just one of the many scenarios I've experienced where tanks are wrongly blamed for something they have no control over.

End Game Doesn't Require Many Tanks

This is, at least I feel, probably one of the strongest contributing factors to Rift's lack of tanks. It's that end-game, there aren't a lot needed. For example, if you don't raid at all, there is really no need for one. If you do raid, you need between 1-3 for 20 players. At the same time, the tanks must gear up two sets unless they are purely tanking, which is time consuming. Helping consolidate armor into one set that changes statistics when you change roles would be extremely beneficial here. There are many players I know of who would have no issues tanking dungeons if they weren't forced to fully re-gear to do so.

Tanks Require Hit/Focus and Toughness

While this probably isn't a huge concern for some, for others it is. Instead of focusing on just one aspect of statistics, tanks must focus on both their Hit/Focus and their Toughness, which makes gearing up that much harder. Mix this with the above problem and it comes out with a not so cool result.

There are No Threat Meters

There are no threat meters in Rift right now, which means the tank has sole responsibility of watching who is pulling threat and to pull it back from them. At the same time, however, this causes the following problems:

  • Most tank force-taunts have decently high cooldowns
  • DPS's who attack too soon will often pull threat
  • AoE threat generation, while it is there, is significantly lower than that of single-target

All-in-all, the thing I've seen the most from this list would be #2, DPS's attacking way too soon and pulling threat. This is especially true when a Cleric is tanking, but also happens with Rogues and Warriors when mobs are spread out a bit. And when the group wipes because of it, we go back to the first issue: the tank is often blamed for absolutely everything.

Please keep in mind that all of this is based on opinion from what I have experienced. While this may not completely answer all problems, it will hopefully help shed some light on the life of a tank, and help players be a little more respectful for them. Also note that not all tanks have the issues listed above, but from experience it's more common than not.

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