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  • You've Got Aggro!!!

    You’ve Got Aggro!!
    (An informal guide to Aggro Management)

    Aggro, sometimes called threat or hate or anger, is the term applied to how mobs normally determine who to attack next. The concept is simple…whoever has the most aggro gets the next attack….recalculated every round.

    What creates aggro? Aggro comes from a variety of sources, but mainly from the following:
    1. Damage done.
    2. Healing done. Healing for xx is equivalent to damage of xx.
    3. Various talent/attack options.
    Aggro Management

    When solo, DPS=survival. More DPS gives you faster kills with less damage. You have to kill or be killed. We learned to level by dealing as much damage as we could manage. Once you start to group, the game changes. We group in instances or for quests that CAN’T be soloed effectively. In that environment, a necessary group skill is learning how to keep the aggro where it belongs. While there are some exceptions (discussed later), the general rule is to let your Main Tank (MT) gain and hold aggro…period.

    MT’s (Warrior, Feral Druid in bear form, or Paladin) have the armor, strength and hit points to take a beating. Warriors are often called “meat shields” for this reason. Warriors and bear form druids also have aggro-creating skills and talents (e.g. Taunt, Sunder Armor) that allow them to create more aggro and to sustain it. A quick summary of warrior aggro generation is this:
    Skills by total hate generated on a single target (50% mob dmg reduction):
    1. Revenge – 1,370 total hate.
    2. Shield Slam – 1,220 total hate.
    3. Sunder Armor – 1,050 total hate.
    4. Shield Bash - 910 total hate.
    5. Heroic Strike - 890 total hate.
    6. Cleave - 500 total hate.
    7. Thunder Clap - 290 total hate.
    8. Demoralizing Shout - 175 total hate.

    Regular melee-type physical damage in defensive stance with defiance generates 4.1 hate per point of damage. For example, a 225 damage hit after reduction = 922 total hate.

    But let’s face it, folks. A warrior needs some time to do these things. It can take 5-15 seconds to stack 5 sunders…longer if the boss resists or dodges them. A single mage fireball can crit to produce more aggro in less time. Hunters have a similar high crit/high DPS issue with their ranged shots. Solution = TIMING. So long as no one other than the MT has attacked, the mobs will NOT leave him. Remember, it’s all math…whoever has the most aggro gets the next mob attack. Warriors have more aggro tricks than other classes, but they take some time to build up. Instant talents like taunt DO NOT create aggro…they can only divert the mob for a few seconds. If YOU are the one DPS’ing your way to glory BEFORE the MT has built up enough aggro to hold the mobs attention, I wish you well. The MT cannot always come into the backfield to save your squishy self from destruction.

    On the other hand, if the MT is allowed to build aggro sufficiently (a matter of a few seconds while you restrain your twitchy attack finger), you can pretty much nuke to your heart’s content. A word to the wise, however, for mages and hunters…your big crits can send you the “You’ve Got Aggro!!” message.

    If you do get aggro, what can you do? Stop, Drop and Roll! Er…better yet…STOP attacking; run to the MT and ask them politely to hit the mob (HARD, please), and moderate your future DPS so as to not be on top of the aggro hit llst.

    Variations on a Theme

    Many boss mobs have a knock-back or a stun/fear/polymorph attack. When this happens, those affected by the attack (i.e. main tank) are temporarily off the aggro calculation and the mob will go to whoever is next on the list. When that happens, the off tank or other melee type character has to step up and be the center of attention. Once the duration of the attack is over, the MT and others are back in the calculation. You may actually have to stop attacking when such an attack is in effect if you don’t want the aggro and attention of the mob.

    Some bosses have a periodic “ignore aggro and attack the nearest squishy” feature. When that happens, you hope it’s temporary and that you have some good healing potions or band-aids ready to go.

    Healing Aggro is equivalent to damage aggro assuming that the healer has a 20% threat reduction. This means that those lovely 4,500 HP Greater Heal crits = the same aggro as a double pyroblast crit nuke with hot fudge topping from a mage. Best advice is to start small (Renew or Lesser Heal) and escalate over time to allow the MT to be firmly on top of the aggro list.

    Shedding Aggro

    So far as I know, there is no action that is “negative” aggro. The best you can do is to either stop creating aggro (hoping that the MT or someone can take the aggro lead back) or, for some classes, temporarily disappear from the aggro equation. When a hunter feigns death (assuming it’s successful), the mob reacts as though the hunter died and looks to whoever is next on the aggro hit parade. Priests have a similar aggro-reduction talent with Fade. Rogues have Vanish or Feint,

    Pulling is a special topic deserving of much attention since there are many ways to pull. This thread is not focused on pulling, but I will venture to say that who pulls and how a pull is initiated is a matter of choice based on the situation. The group leader should ALWAYS be the one to designate targets and pulling attacks.

    Off-tanking is another topic that will be saved for a later day.
    Last edited by beep; 12-31-2005, 10:59 AM.
    Beep


    Those people who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do. - (Isaac Asimov)

  • #2
    Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

    Originally posted by beep
    Shedding Aggro

    So far as I know, there is no action that is “negative” aggro.
    Rogues have Feint to shed aggro. People always get mad at me when I'm not pulling aggro, It's not like I can help that I dont really want to take the aggro off the tanks. I only stop using feint for the healers.
    RAWGRLRLRLRRLGLRL!!!

    Nations are like individuals: they achieve more when they plan to plant a tiny tree, and do it, than when they propose to raise an entire forest and then fall asleep in the furrows.

    I AM socializing artard, I'm logged on to an MMORPG with people from all over the world and getting XP with my party using Teamspeak

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    • #3
      Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

      I have also heard that the pally stun resets aggro, though Im not totally sure about that and would like to test it further, could be an awsome tool.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

        As far as mages are concerned, my brother told me a useful tactic about aggro: As we all now, even if you let the tank establish aggro, mages in all their DPS glory have been known on occasion (;)) to steal aggro. While this isn't always a problem is your target is close to death, if you're dealing with a serious threat then you can toss yourself into an ice block to keep yourself from taking the aggro on before the enemy even touches you. This also gives the tank ample time (10 sec.) to re-establish aggro appropriately. And of course, ... mages, ... don't be afraid of your wands. They are a useful aggro management device. :D


        Wow--this is the most informative post I've ever made, ... hope I didn't make a fool of myself :P

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        • #5
          Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

          Nope nice post Adrielle.

          Not sure about that stun Lis I'd like to test this as well lets see if Beep will go with us and see if we can figure out a way to try it.

          Its good to know how your class can dump aggro but try to be aware of who is going to get it next ... I know Paladins will often fail to shield themselves knowing that the priest is most likely the next highest thread to the mob, if the MT has gone down.

          Everyone needs to be aware that if they dump aggro to the priest and he/she goes down its still going to be a whipe even if you don't have to do the spirit shuffle.

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          • #6
            Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

            If you want to see the most calculated aggro managment ever watch a good warlock soloing with his void walker. The warlock will do the absolute most damage he can but it will always be one point short of pulling aggro off of his void walker. Warlocks tend to end up good at controlling aggro since they spend all thier time with thier void when they are soloing and get to learn exactly how much aggro all of thier spells create and how much aggro thier void creates. If you want to really get good at controling aggro just go out with another player and try and bounce a mob back and forth.
            frowning takes 47 muscles, and smiling only take 17, but sitting there with a zombie like stare on your face takes 0, we have a winner.

            The fights are so bitter because the stakes are so small. -watch words of academia

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            • #7
              Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

              There are some unique ways for paladins to manage aggro on the main tank. The first of these is a judgment of light. The JoL will heal the MT when he hits the mob, and consequently maintain aggro gain. Further, paladins almost NEVER pull healing aggro. I'm not sure if it's not factored into the aggro table or if it's simple that we have max aggro reduction on healing. And as a healing paladin that can crank some seriously high crit heals, I've never drawn aggro at all from doing healing.

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              • #8
                Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

                There are 5 negitive aggro moves:

                1) Rogue Feint. It reduces your aggro by X amount every time used. When raiding the rogue should ALWAYS use feint to prevent them from getting aggro unless they're trying to pull off a squishie (someone else mentioned this before).

                2) Hunter Disengage. It reduces your aggro by X amount every time used. While getting aggro as a hunter isn't a good thing, using disengage could be counter productive. It should only be used when a mob runs to melee with you so you can send it back, or if the mob runs past you so you can hit is as it runs away. If you're close enough to disengage then you're too close to be shooting.

                3) Hunter Pet Cower. It reduces your pet's aggro by X amount every time used. It takes TP so some people are on the fence with training their pet with this or not. If you're using growl to pull off the tank, stop. If your pet is out aggroing the tank without using growl, then get a new tank. Suffice to say cower makes mobs not want to beat on your pet and could save it if it gets unwanted attention.

                4) Priest Fade. Works like a reverse taunt. Drops your aggro by X amount for 10 seconds, after which the aggro returns. Some people say to fade every time it comes up to keep aggro down. I call them fools. Its like a tank who punches taunt every time it lights up. It'll save the day temporaily, but toss you back into the same mess you left unless you fixed it in that short window.

                5) Hunter Feign Death. "Kills" the hunter and thus removes from combat. When the hunter rejoins it will be as if they were a new combatant and start with 0 hate. Its common practice (and smart) for a hunter to hit FD as soon as the button lights up. If its resisted then stop firing for a few seconds before shooting again. If FD is successful, then open up briefly with the knowledge that you're at the bottom of the aggro list.


                There are also certain conditions that will cause your aggro to drop.

                If you are crowd controled with something that breaks on damage by a mob (sheep, hex, gouge, etc) or affected with something that makes you immune to all damage and spells (banish, deep slumber, ice block, etc), then your aggro will drop just low enough to be 1 point lower than the next person on the aggro list and you will never be at the top while still affected. This is done to prevent the mobs from breaking their own CC or making useless attacks. It should be noted that hotswapping aggro with the mob could cause the main tank or affected party member to lose aggro significantly.

                Example:
                Tank has 14000 hate, Priest has 12000 hate, Hunter has 11000 hate, and Paladin has 10000 hate.

                Tank gets CCed and drops to 11999 hate giving Priest the aggro.
                Priest uses fade and drops to 8000 hate for 10 seconds causing the hate to go to hunter and dropping the tank's hate to 10999.
                Hunter FDs dropping hate to 0 and giving aggro to Paladin causing the tank to drop to 9999 hate.
                Priest's fade runs out just as tank breaks CC putting the priest back at 12000 hate and getting aggro when the tank pops back with 9999 hate.
                Last edited by Tarenth; 05-01-2006, 07:44 PM.
                My sanity is not in question...
                It was a confirmed casualty some time ago.


                Light, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to hide the bodies of the people I had to kill because they ticked me off.



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                • #9
                  Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

                  This is the best explanation of aggro i have read. I now have a basic understanding. Thanks!

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                  • #10
                    Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

                    Druids also have Cower, when in cat form. The problem is cat form cower is laughably underpowered, and as a result is an extremely weak aggro shedding device. Until (read: IF) this is ever fixed, druids in cat form basically have to rely on controlling the timing, and amount, of dps.

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                    • #11
                      Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

                      Originally posted by Tarenth View Post
                      There are 5 negitive aggro moves:

                      1) Rogue Feint. It reduces your aggro by X amount every time used. When raiding the rogue should ALWAYS use feint to prevent them from getting aggro unless they're trying to pull off a squishie (someone else mentioned this before).

                      2) Hunter Disengage. It reduces your aggro by X amount every time used. While getting aggro as a hunter isn't a good thing, using disengage could be counter productive. It should only be used when a mob runs to melee with you so you can send it back, or if the mob runs past you so you can hit is as it runs away. If you're close enough to disengage then you're too close to be shooting.

                      3) Hunter Pet Cower. It reduces your pet's aggro by X amount every time used. It takes TP so some people are on the fence with training their pet with this or not. If you're using growl to pull off the tank, stop. If your pet is out aggroing the tank without using growl, then get a new tank. Suffice to say cower makes mobs not want to beat on your pet and could save it if it gets unwanted attention.

                      4) Priest Fade. Works like a reverse taunt. Drops your aggro by X amount for 10 seconds, after which the aggro returns. Some people say to fade every time it comes up to keep aggro down. I call them fools. Its like a tank who punches taunt every time it lights up. It'll save the day temporaily, but toss you back into the same mess you left unless you fixed it in that short window.

                      5) Hunter Feign Death. "Kills" the hunter and thus removes from combat. When the hunter rejoins it will be as if they were a new combatant and start with 0 hate. Its common practice (and smart) for a hunter to hit FD as soon as the button lights up. If its resisted then stop firing for a few seconds before shooting again. If FD is successful, then open up briefly with the knowledge that you're at the bottom of the aggro list.
                      um.....

                      6.) Mage Ice Block = 10 seconds of being completely removed from the hate list
                      7.) Druid (cat) Cower same concept as feint for rogues
                      8.) Pally bubble (self or BoP)
                      9.) if u want to cound Divine Intervention... completely removed from the fight for 3 minutes... assuming u were DIed in a good spot.. u can watch the rest of your raid group get pwned while in a glimmering sphere of ucanttouchme=P pop out and rez... rinse repeat(without the getting wtfpwnd )
                      powered by Windows 7

                      . . . .

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                      • #12
                        Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

                        Fine. I missed the druid cower simply because its the same as rogue feint and hunter pet cower. There's also a succubus aggro move too, but its name escapes me at the moment.

                        However I did cover Mage Ice Block, Pally Bubble, and Blessing of Protection. Read what you didn't quote. :P
                        My sanity is not in question...
                        It was a confirmed casualty some time ago.


                        Light, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to hide the bodies of the people I had to kill because they ticked me off.



                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

                          zomg... tarenth.. i should smack u... u gave me -rep on the forums cause of my last post... u noob
                          powered by Windows 7

                          . . . .

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                          • #14
                            Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

                            Taken from WowWiki:

                            Threat level increasing abilities
                            Name Threat
                            Health gained (from certain effects)...0.5
                            Mana gained (from certain effects)...0.5
                            Healing done...0.5
                            Damage dealt...1
                            Rage gained...5
                            Improved Revenge stun...25
                            Demoralizing Roar...42
                            Demoralizing Shout...43
                            Battle Shout...55 per buffed member
                            Faerie Fire...108
                            Heroic Strike (rank 8)...145*
                            Shield Bash...180*
                            Shield Slam...250*
                            Sunder Armor...261
                            Revenge (rank 5)...315*
                            Distracting Shot (rank 6)...600
                            Threat level reducing abilities
                            Name Threat
                            Soothing Kiss (rank 4)...-165
                            Pet:Cower (rank 6)...-225
                            Disengage (rank 3)...-405
                            Druid:Cower (rank 3)...-600
                            Grace of Earth* * (item)...-650
                            Feint (rank 5)...-800
                            Fade* (rank 6)...-820

                            * Fade is a temporary buff. When it expires, its threat level reduction is revoked once an aggro generating action is performed.
                            * * Grace of Earth is an item provided by Cenarion Circle.
                            Threat modifiers

                            The actual threat generated by the effects above can be modified by the following abilities, talents and spells:

                            * All classes
                            o Blessing of Salvation (Paladin Blessing). All threat generated is reduced by 30%.
                            o Tranquil Air Totem (Shaman Totem). All threat generated is reduced by 20%.
                            * Warrior
                            o Battle Stance. All threat generated is reduced by 20%.
                            o Berserker Stance. All threat generated is reduced by 20%.
                            o Defensive Stance. All threat generated is increased by 30%.
                            o Defiance. All threat generated in Defensive Stance is increased by 3%-15% (depending on rank).
                            * Druid
                            o Bear Form/Dire Bear Form. All threat generated is increased by 30%.
                            o Feral Instinct. All threat generated in Bear and Dire Bear Form is increased by 3%-15% (depending on rank).
                            o Maul. Threat generated on next attack is increased by 75%.
                            o Swipe. Threat generated by this ability is increased by 75%.
                            o Cat Form. This form now has an innate threat reduction component (as of Patch 1.12). Threat reduction is assumed to be equal to the Rogue's 20%.
                            o Subtlety. Threat generated by healing spells is reduced by 4%-20% (depending on rank).
                            * Paladin
                            o Righteous Fury. Threat generated by Holy damage is increased by 60%.
                            o Improved Righteous Fury. Threat generated by Holy damage when using Righteous Fury is increased by 16%-50% (depending on rank).
                            o Threat generated by healing spells is reduced by 50%.
                            * Mage
                            o Arcane Subtlety. Threat generated by offensive Arcane spells is reduced by 20%-40% (depending on rank).
                            o Frost Channeling. Threat generated by offensive Frost spells is reduced by 10%-30% (depending on rank).
                            o Burning Soul. Threat generated by offensive Fire spells is reduced by 15%-30% (depending on rank).
                            * Priest
                            o Shadow Affinity. Threat generated by Shadow spells is reduced by 8%-25% (depending on rank).
                            o Silent Resolve. Threat generated by spells is reduced by 4%-20% (depending on rank).
                            o Mind Blast Threat generated by this ability is increased by 100%.
                            * Warlock
                            o Master Demonologist. With Imp summoned, threat generated by all spells is reduced by 4%-20% (depending on rank).
                            o Searing Pain Threat generated by this ability is increased by 100%.
                            * Shaman
                            o Healing Grace. Threat generated by healing spells is reduced by 5%-15% (depending on rank).
                            o Earth Shock Threat generated by this ability is increased by 100%.
                            * Rogue
                            o All threat generated is reduced by 20%.

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                            • #15
                              Re: You've Got Aggro!!!

                              Notice that all the Warrior abilities have a flat amount of threat that they cause, which is later multiplied by the above multipliers. A druid, on the other-hand has the same modifiers, but the base is resultant of the damage they do in bear form...so a 500 Maul ends up being some 1200 or so threat...not 800 like a warrior...(just throwing numbers out there)

                              So as a druids DPS scales up, so does the threat...and multiplicatively so....which is why I have to stop attacking to let a warrior get aggro over me when I need to shift out for something.

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