Kristyana's Incredibly Detailed Fire Tank Guide

Discussion in 'Oracle’s Database (Guides)' started by Kristyana, Feb 18, 2013.

  1. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Kristyana's Incredibly Detailed Fire Tank Guide
    Current Version 2.6

    Hi everybody! My name is Kristyana. I started out when the game launched playing as a fire user on the US PC server Darkness Falls. After the megaserver merge, I'm of course on the USPC side. I've absolutely loved fire's mechanics and how they tank.

    This guide has gone through many iterations over the last two years. I wrote the first version of the guide a few months after the game's release for several reasons. At the time fire tanking was considered far inferior to ice tanking because of the mechanics. Ice allowed players to simply play as DPS and not have to worry about tanking because they were so tough and didn't have to worry about taking damage, and Fire's mechanics weren't really delved into or documented. At least on the PC side, once Fortress of Solitude 1 and 2 came out, fire tanks became a nearly extinct species compared to Ice.

    Myself and a few others stuck with it and actually delved into the mechanics of the class, hence the first guide which explained how fire tanking worked, how self buffs worked, and in the hands of a competent player and team, Fire could do nearly anything Ice could do and in some cases a lot more. Since then, the mechanics have become friendlier, making fire tanking easier but still taking time to learn to get the most out of it.

    This guide is broken down into sections, and is incredibly long. I don't write guides the way that most people do – I'm a firm believer in “give a man a fish” vs “teach a man to fish.” A lot of other guides will simply tell you what loadouts and powers to use without any type of followup. These are not guides to the powerset or the role, but rather “This is what I do, and you should too.” I try to be as detailed as possible about the powerset from official sources, discussions with the developers both online and in person, and from my own personal observations since launch.

    Similarly, I give a few example loadouts near the end of this guide after a discussion of all the different powers, what they do, and examples of when to use them. By the time you reach the end of the guide, you'll have a firm grasp on what you need to do, and decide what powers you need to do to get the job done effectively.

    Please feel free to comment! The old guide ended up with hundreds of responses before being moved here to the new forums.

    This guide has been copied in part or whole to other websites, never with it being updated and some times without credit. I was even accused of plagiarizing my own guide, in my own thread. The latest version will always be posted right here, in this thread.

    Part 1: What is tanking?

    If this is your first MMO, there are several terms that describe the basic classes in the game. A Healer heals the group when it takes damage. A Controller heals the group's power and controls groups of enemies by stunning them, encasing them in bubbles, knocking them back, etc. A DPSer kills things as fast as possible, and a Tank's job is to make all the enemies focus on him and beat on him so the other three classes can do their jobs. There are currently three tank classes in the game. Fire and Ice are standard with the game, and Earth requires the purchase of a DLC.

    Tanking is easy to learn but difficult to master, moreso I feel than the other roles in the game. It is very unforgiving when you do it wrong. When a raid loses a healer or a DPSer in a boss fight, you can still usually win even if it takes longer. Nine times out of ten, however, if the tank is undergeared or not doing his job and dies, all hell will break loose. Because of this, in a raid or an alert, the tank is the one who controls the flow of the encounter.

    Tanks have certain mechanics attached to them that will make enemies focus on them. Their armor has the highest defense and health in the game in order to make them a big punching bag to absorb the damage everything throws at them. They also have a mechanic unique to the other classes in the game that causes enemies to focus on them. This is known as taunting.

    Threat and Taunting
    You may have noticed that enemies focus on different people when they do different things. Every enemy and boss in the game have something called a Threat Table. Every action a player does in the game ends up generating threat (healing, hitting something with a power, putting a debuff on a target) and an enemy will keep track of this. Whatever player has the highest current threat on the table ends up being the target that the enemy will go after. Threat is also known as “aggro.” In game terms, the player that "has aggro” is the one that the enemy is attacking. Similarly, “ripping aggro” means generating more threat than someone who currently has it, meaning that they become the new target.

    Tanks have a mechanic known in MMO terms as taunting. Their powers generate an extreme amount of threat disproportionate to the other roles in the game. This causes enemies to focus on them as opposed to generating threat through things like critical attacks or damage a tank can do.

    A tank's taunt is triggered by hitting an enemy with a power, causing yellow damage. Once a tank taunts an enemy, the enemy will focus on the tank for twelve seconds (excepting threat resets, which are explained below.)

    There has been much debate on both forums about how exactly taunting, threat, and the threat tables work. A few weeks ago (at the time of this writing) the developer responsible for actually writing the threat mechanics popped into the EUPC server and answered some questions. The following is basically transcribed from what ObsidianChill passed on along with other observations.
    • Whenever a player performs an action, threat is generated.
    • Tank powers have a huge number attached to their powers to make enemies focus on them.
    • Because of this high number, the only thing that can rip aggro from a tank is another tank.
    • If there are two tanks and they both taunt at the same time, whichever tank does more damage with their taunt will be the one who grabs aggro.
    • Every time a tank loses aggro for any reason before twelve seconds, it's because the enemy reset their threat table to a blank slate. The first person to generate threat after this reset becomes the target until the tank can taunt him again. This is why enemies will be focused on the tank and suddenly seem to go after random people.
    From personal observation (this is unconfirmed by a developer at this time) Healing over Time powers seem to generate constant threat; this is why when the enemy or boss goes after a “random” target, the healer is the one who gets attacked 9 times out of 10. Most raid mobs and bosses reset their threat tables every one or two attacks, requiring the tank to constantly make sure that they're taunting.

    As a fire tank, it's worth noting that only the initial cast of a power will taunt. A tick of damage from burning will not maintain your taunt or refresh it. For example: If you cast Inferno and a mob that wasn't hit by the initial cast walks into it, he'll be set on fire but won't be taunted. Same thing with a dropped meteor if a mob walks into it and wasn't hit by the initial cast.

    So, once a tank has the attention of everything around it, they start to take damage. A LOT of damage. Each tank has unique mechanics to deal with this incoming damage, but to understand how they work, a few terms need to be explained.
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  2. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Actual HP, Effective HP, Armor Piercing, and the Mitigation Cap
    I'm about to post a LOT of math and numbers here. For this guide, I use an example of a geared tank with 3500 HP, 2800 Defense, and 500 dominance.

    Actual HP is the amount of health you actually have through a combination of the gear you're wearing, any mods socketed in it, skill/power point innates, and any consumables that buff your health. In short, whatever you see on the stat menu either buffed or unbuffed is your Actual HP.

    Effective HP combines the amount of Actual HP you have and the mitigation you have through your Defense statistic to figure out exactly how much raw damage you can take before being knocked out. At level 30, you receive 1% damage mitigation per 71 defense. If you have 2800 defense as a tank, you have 39.44% damage mitigation, which means that every attack you take will have 39.44% taken off of it that actually hits you. If a boss has an attack that does a flat 1000 damage, it will only hit you for 606 damage. This means that if you have 3500 actual HP, your effective HP is 5779, because that's how much damage it will take to actually knock you out.

    In order to explain these concepts further, this guide takes a detour and describes how ice tanking works as these mechanics are much simpler to understand with that class. Once you understand these concepts, you'll see how fire works differently.

    Ice tanks mitigate damage by having a defensive buff. Any power that an ice tank uses in tank role increases their defense by 90%. That 2800 defense just got popped up to 5320, which means 74.93% mitigation. This gives our ice tank, using any power to gain that buff, an effective HP of 13,961. As defense increases through innates and better gear, so does mitigation. This would cause an exponential increase in effective HP to the point where the ice tank (or any player for that matter) would become completely invincible at 7100 defense with 100% damage mitigation.

    While this sounds nice in theory, tanks need to take some sort of damage, so there were two concepts introduced to the game known as armor piercing and the mitigation cap.

    Most mobs and bosses in endgame content will ignore a certain percentage of your defense statistic. According to Jens on the livestream, this varies anywhere from 10% to 25%, making some enemies hit harder than others. In case your defense statistic ends up being high enough to still be 7100 after armor piercing, then you run into the mitigation cap. The highest possible mitigation, regardless of any other factors is 75%(80% with a mod from Home Turf). Because of the variable armor piercing, there's no way to tell if you're at the defensive cap or not simply from looking at the Defense statistic.

    When you block, it adds 5000 Defense, in most cases taking you to the mitigation cap. This means that at the mitigation cap, your effective HP is 4x the amount of actual HP you have(5x with the aforementioned Home Turf mod).

    Part 2: Fire Tanks

    Every tank has a primary method of survival with a supplementary way of increasing that survival. For Ice, their primary mechanic (high defense) is supplemented by self shields. For Fire, our primary mechanic (high health and a healing buff) is supplemented by our self healing. Earth tanks use a combination of high defense and damage absorption up to 50% fully buffed.

    When you use a power as a fire tank, your primary mechanic activates. You get a 60% bonus to your actual HP, plus an additional health buff which is 2.2 times your Dominance. You also get an 80% bonus to your incoming heals from self heals, healing barrels, and healers. The only thing it doesn't affect is heals from soders which are a flat rate.

    This means our example tank will end up with 6700 HP buffed ((3500*1.6) + (2.2*500)) making his effective HP 11,062. Compare this to an ice tank with identical statistics where their effective HP will be 14,000 due to their defense buff taking them to the mitigation cap. The difference here is that a Fire tank can continue to increase their effective HP by blocking. Since your mitigation as a tank goes to the cap when blocking, the fire tank's effective HP goes up to 26,800; nearly double that of the ice tank.

    All tanks now need to block in higher level content to hit the mitigation cap, so we can compare all three tanks at the highest mitigation possible, fully buffed:

    Effective Health of a tank with 3500 HP, 2800 Defense, 500 Dominance, blocking:
    • Fire: 26,800 EHP
    • Ice: 14,000 EHP (+40,000 EHP with Reflect, more on this and other shields later)
    • Earth: Anywhere from 21,000 to 28,000 EHP depending on Absorption Buff
    Fire users will get this Effective HP automatically just from using a power and blocking. Ice will lag behind unless Reflect is popped, and Earth requires both power and a slot or two on the bar specifically designed to max out their Absorption to 50% depending on their playstyle. Ice and Earth have a bit more freedom to move around because they won't be blocking so much to max out their mitigation, and when fire tanks run around they take more damage than the other two tanks when they get smacked. To counterbalance this, we have a healing buff where we heal nearly twice as fast as other tanks (although less efficiently overall than Earth), and we can supplement this with our own self heals.
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  3. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Self Healing
    This is the largest mistake I think I see fire tanks make, even to this day. This gets its own line because it is the most important thing to realize about fire.

    While fire tanks can heal, they are NOT a self-healing tank.

    Make no mistake - our primary survivability comes from our high health and we are just as reliant on our healers as the other two tanks. Self heals are designed to help us heal some of that extra damage we take, and you really only need to heal for a generally small amount. Builds dedicated to self healing use a lot of power, and can starve the healers who can be far more effective with it not just for you but the whole group.

    When you use a self heal, your restoration score for that heal is your Dominance + Restoration – 50. This formula is off by about half a percent on the low side; the reason for this is that the engine uses several different conversions and I'm not sure exactly where it gets combined or where the decimal points get dropped. I have spent literally hours trying to figure the exact formula and I feel that a half to a quarter percent margin of error is just fine. If you calculate a heal will do +854 and it does +850, the extra 4 HP really doesn't factor in.

    You get a 1% increase in Healing per 4 Restoration (your combined Restoration + Dominance – 50 score as a fire tank). I figured out the exact numbers each power that heals ends up healing for as a base.


    Consume Objects will heal between 31 and 39 HP on use. It does not matter if it actually consumes anything.

    Backdraft and Fiery Weapon will both heal between 73 and 82 HP if used on a burning target. They will only process this heal once per use.

    Absorb Heat will heal between 14 and 17 HP per tick for 6 ticks if used against a burning target for a total heal of between 84 and 102. This is assuming no critical heals and no cancels/interruptions.

    Burnout will heal between 60 and 64 HP on use.

    Reignition will heal between 146 and 160 HP on use.

    Burning Determination will heal between 21 and 28 HP on the initial cast and the next three hits of damage you take for a total heal between 84 and 112.

    Stoke Flames will heal for 14 to 17 HP per tic for 8 tics.


    Eternal Flame will heal for 44 to 51 HP per tic and will process every single time you get hit for a full twelve seconds. Tested this out extensively and the most tics I ever got out of it was dueling Black Sam who was clipping and doing everything he could to me and it processed 28 times. If I had two people in PVP beating on me with Pulse Beams I'm sure this would go even higher.

    To find out how much a power would heal you in DPS mode, here's the formula:

    Healing Done = Base Healing * ( 1 + ((Restoration + Dominance – 50)/400))

    Multiply this number by 1.8 to see how much this would heal you in tank mode, with your 80% healing bonus. Keep in mind the half percent margin of error listed earlier.

    Your base Critical Healing Magnitude is 25%. You can get this up to 100% through skill point innates, an iconic power, and the natural bonus you get from being a fire user.

    There are several drawbacks to the self healing that can get you in trouble. If you're blocking and need to cast a self heal, there is absolutely no point in using it if the amount of damage you'll take coming out of block will be higher than the amount you'll actually heal for. Fire self heals do not absorb or reflect damage. Skills like Burning Determination and Eternal Flame that heal when you take damage still have the full damage applied to you. With enemies hitting harder in endgame content, the chance you'll take more damage than you heal for is a certainty if you don't know how to nullify this. To learn how to nullify this takes time and practice to learn the attack patterns of what you're fighting.

    The more you encounter certain enemies, the more you learn to recognize their attack patterns and animations. If you can't time your cast just right between attack animations or you're surrounded, roll away from whatever is beating on you which should give you a few seconds to cast the self heal before the enemies catch up to you. If your dominance is high enough, you can use a crowd control power such as Flashpoint or High Pressure to give you some breathing room before casting your self heal. If you use a heal-over-time move like Stoke Flames or Burning Determination, it's best to turtle until it finishes processing to get the full benefit of the heal.

    The Healing Gap, or "How much do I actually need to self heal for?"
    Earlier I mentioned that there was a very little amount you had to heal for to be as efficient as the other two tanks. I call this amount the Healing Gap.

    As you get more geared, your HP pool increases not just from your normal health going so high but from your dominance creeping skyward as well. Your healing gets buffed to 180% of normal when in tank mode, which is higher than the initial 160% HP buff you get resulting in an overlap. Without dominance, this means you're healing more efficiently than the other two tanks. Once dominance gets factored in though, your health buff becomes higher than 160%. The most efficient fire tank is going to have their total HP buff and healing buff be identical at 180%. Anything past a 180% health buff results in the healers working harder to heal you than the other two tanks, something that seems counter intuitive when you see how many large numbers get thrown around when healing a fire tank. The solution to this is to be able to heal anything past that 180% yourself. That's all you have to do to overcome this.

    I toyed with this formula quite a bit, but it's a ridiculously low percentage. To find it, take this formula:

    ( Fully Buffed HP – ( Normal HP x 1.8 )) x 100 / Fully Buffed HP

    In our tank's example, 3500 HP and 500 dominance would give the tank 6700 HP buffed. Here's what that means in a practical scenario.

    If I'm relying on my healers to heal my 3500 HP, when I use a power, my healing buff means that same 3500 HP of healing can now heal me for 6300 HP without any additional effort on behalf of the healers. My fully buffed HP is 6700, for a gap of 400 HP between the two values.

    This means for every 6700 damage I take in, I need to heal myself for 400 to cover the gap between my HP buff and my healing buff, or it means my healers are working harder. This comes out to 6% of my buffed HP.

    This number ranges anywhere from 0% to 12% with the current armor sets and how you allocate your skill points. Anything you heal over this gap is pure gravy, but keep in mind the more you self heal the more your controllers have to work, so it really depends on who you want to put more pressure on in the group – the healers or controllers. You always want to accomplish your goals using the least amount of power possible.

    If you find your controllers are routinely running out of power and you're the one taking the most in, you'll probably want to change your playstyle. Turtle more and let the power go to the healers. A self healing fire tank will end up using the most power in a group if they aren't careful and bleed everyone else dry, and then they have nothing left to re-taunt a target if the threat table resets.

    The greatest thing about this is that most players who run fire powers that happen to heal as a secondary effect (Burnout for the breakout, Backdraft to round up adds) will end up healing for this amount without really trying to. Save the larger heals you have for panic moments to last long enough for a healer to catch up.

    In the hands of a skilled player, these blocking and self healing mechanics are the largest advantage a fire tank has over the other two tanks. Just with the innate +60% HP and +80% Healing buff up, if you block, you already have far more effective HP than the other two tanks do (excepting when Reflect is up for Ice and Damage Absorption is maxed at 50% for Earth).
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  4. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Downsides to being a Fire Tank
    I wouldn't be able to talk about the benefits of fire tanking without taking a hard look at their very real drawbacks and shortcomings compared to the other two tank classes. What follows is an honest discussion about the issues we have, along with some pointers to help overcome or at least minimize the impact they have.

    I do want anyone reading this to keep in mind that these are downsides and not disadvantages. I am not saying that any of the powers or mechanics of fire should be changed to eliminate these downsides. The downsides are just as important in keeping fire unique as the upsides.

    -You have to play like a tank.

    This applies to all tank classes, but moreso now for fire tanks. You only quadruple your HP pool when blocking. Furthermore, your mitigation and effective HP drops like a rock when you do anything but block (such as moving around in a boss fight, or using a power) and you are far more vulnerable to spike damage during this period than the other two tanks.

    This is an action MMO and unless people are watching non-red numbers rack up above their heads, they aren't happy. You have to have the right mindset to be a tank in general, and a team player to get the most out of a fire tank.

    -You can be slightly harder to keep healed or powered than the other two tanks.

    If you do not block, you are going to take far more damage than the other two tanks because your mitigation is not as high. However, you'll still have an innate 160% HP buff and it will be overlapped by your 180% healing received buff as discussed earlier. You'll heal faster than the other tanks, and those heals will be more efficient than ice and almost as good as earth. Depending on your build however, with your Dominance increasing this buff, anything over a 180% health buff will cause the heals coming in from your healers to be the least efficient out of the three, and the constant spiking of your health bar can cause healers to panic if they aren't used to seeing that. Similarly, if you self heal for a lot, you present the same problem you give the healers to the controllers by putting strain on them to refill your power bar.

    While this is a huge problem, one of the things that separates the good fire tanks from the great fire tanks is being able to use this as an advantage. You have the ability to choose who you rely on more in a fight for your survivability - the healers or the controllers. Ice has to rely solely on the healer, and while Earth can technically do the same thing, their power management is a lot more tricky because they need to keep their buffs up. If you notice that you're running with lagging controller you can choose to rely more on the healer because what power does go out will be used far more effectively by them. Similarly, if you notice that a healer isn't overgeared allowing you to breeze through the content but the controller can keep up, go nuts on the self healing. By doing this you not only help yourself but help make the instance you're running much, much smoother.

    -Fire tanks have no shield.

    This is one of the two most vocal complaints about fire tanking, and something unskilled players with no idea of how the powerset functions feel need to be added. Unlike ice and earth tanks, fire tanks have no additional ways in their powerset to prevent incoming damage. Reflect and Gemstone Shield can allow the other two tanks to revive a teammate or grab a console without getting interrupted or get out of the block position to wail on something and regain power. There are several movement and iconic powers that can work for fire (Amazon Deflection, Phase Dodge, Hard Light Shield, etc) but they are also available to ice and earth tanks and work better for them because...

    -Defensive shields are far more effective for ice and earth tanks than they are a fire tank.

    I touched on this earlier when I mentioned Reflect and how it raised EHP to staggeringly high levels. When a healer or a controller encases you in a shield or you use Hard Light Shield, they all absorb a certain amount of damage before losing their effectiveness. The damage applied is figured out after the mitigation calculation. If you have 35% mitigation, a 1000 damage attack will hit you for 650 damage. This is what actually gets absorbed by the shield. With the maximum mitigation at 75%, that same shield only needs to absorb 250 damage, so it will last much longer.

    Basically, to figure out how much a shield raises your EHP, take the amount of damage it can absorb (multiplied by it's effective percentage) and add it to your actual HP.

    So why is this a problem, when in reality all shields absorb the same damage, even if they drop quicker?

    In a group setting, the main purpose of a shield besides just damage mitigation is to either revive a teammate/grab a console, or to give time for your healers to catch up. With the shield lasting longer for the other two tanks, the healers have more time to get them back up to full health, or the tank has a few extra seconds to grab that person that just got smacked. Shields do not last as long for a fire tank because their mitigation is not as high as the other two tanks. The only exception to this is when the tank blocks.

    -Fire does not have a power specific ranged pull.

    This is the other large complaint people have about fire tanks.

    Fire tanks don't have a range pull to equal Inescapable Storm or Earthen Grip for moving mobs from a distance. This can be overcome with movement or iconic powers, to an extent. Take Low Pressure if you're a flyer. Tornado Pull and Grapple Line are single target pulls in the Superspeed and Acrobat trees. If you want a longer ranged single target pull, some players use Mesmerizing Lasso. An ice tank can simply use Inescapable Storm to pull stuff where they want it to be; a fire tank either has to use a movement ability, or lunge into the middle of the trash, hit a spammable to get everyone's attention, then roll where they want everyone to converge.

    -There's still a player bias against Fire Tanks.

    I see it ingame and just in the short time I've been here since the forum merge, I've seen instances of it. Regardless of all the different changes and despite the Herculean efforts of myself and others, ice tanks are still without a doubt the friendliest tank to play, from an “oops” standpoint. A bad ice tank will usually do better than a bad fire tank (and will always do better than a bad earth tank) due to how forgiving ice is to play compared to the other two classes. This doesn't really happen anymore, but you'll sometimes see people shouting in /lfg that they're looking for an ice tank for a specific run or feat.
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  5. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Part 3: Fire Tanking Powers

    These are discussions of fire powers as they pertain to tanking, not to DPS. These are also my personal opinions on these powers; some other fire tanks use them differently yet no less effectively. Find out what works for you - there should hopefully be enough information in these posts and in this thread, and feel free to ask any questions!
    TO DO: Make changes reflecting GU23 when it comes out (remove Consume Objects, add Overheat, etc)


    Advantages: Aggros everything around you for 15 meters and everything around half that distance gets knocked up and set on fire. For the next twelve seconds, everything around you that you touch catches on fire and you get a small impluse resistance. This power lasts as long as your taunt duration, so if you cast it every time it's on cooldown, you'll always have your taunt going. If you cast Flashpoint with this active, everything around you is set on fire for a full 12 seconds or said burning is refreshed.

    Drawbacks: You have to remain in melee range if you want to keep things burning with Enflame by itself. The only way to apply burning that actually sticks is to use Flashpoint after casting this skill.

    When to use it: When it's in my loadout, I use it every time it's on cooldown. I follow it up with Flashpoint to get everything around me burning in a nice little cluster for my DPSers. The control resistance is nice on boss fights and high level mobs as it can help prevent you from being smacked around as much. If you use Flashpoint with this skill, make sure to cast it right before Enflame wears off so you can refresh the burning on everything around you.


    Advantages: Flashpoint, if your dominance is higher than the minimum required on the content, will knock down enemies around you. If you have Enflame or Immolation active, it will also set everything around you on fire. This will keep trash juggled and can give you breathing room. The ability to spam this power makes it great for re-establishing taunt on bosses in high level content. Can be combined with a few weapon combos into a "super juggle" move.

    Disadvantages: Some of the higher end mobs and trash will either be using their own powers (so they won't get knocked down if they're in their own animation) or they simply cannot be knocked down no matter what your dominance is. Unless your dominance is over the minimum required for the content, this power's usefulness is cut drastically.

    When to use it: This is a great power to use in alerts and raids with lots of trash such as Subcon and the Fortress of Solitude raids. It's a good way to set everything on fire; if you cast Enflame then jump into the group of mobs, casting Flashpoint right away can knock most of the trash flat on its back and allow your healers and controllers a few seconds to set up their own skills before you start taking spike damage. When you're being pounded on by a ton of adds (such as Assassins in FOS2) casting this will knock them down and give you a second or two of breathing room to use a self heal or to let your healers catch up. Trash that's being juggled isn't doing damage to you or the rest of the group. You can also clip weapon combos with this power. I always try to use this power in between boss combinations to keep the boss focused on me as much as possible. More on this later.


    Advantages: Point Blank Area Effect Pull that is really the only thing you have comparable to Inescapable Storm in the powerset. Slows down and pull any mobs towards you to get them in a nice clump, and any that actually hit you get knocked up into the air. Heals you if used on a burning target. If you have Enflame active, anything that gets pulled in close enough to touch you will catch fire.

    Disadvantages: It's not a ranged pull, and if you're trying to pull a single target, finding out the radius or where to stand to pull just one or two things can be extremely tricky. It will only heal once, independent of how many burning targets it hits.

    When to use it: Crowd control! A good example is to start a fight with Enflame, then cycle back and forth between Flashpoint and Backdraft, keeping things juggled and on fire until things are dead. Your DPSers will be very happy to have everything in a nice compact group. It also rounds mobs back in after you do a superjuggle.

    Backdraft is the single most important fire tanking power in the game. Unless you're purely DPS specced and just happened to hit the T button in a fight to maintain some semblance of aggro in a boss fight, this power needs to be on your bar.


    Advantages: Upon use, Immolation will damage everything within about five meters of you, and provide damage back at the next three attacks you take. Once Immolation is cast, if you use Flashpoint within 12 seconds, everything around you is set on fire, regardless of if you've already taken the initial three hits or not.

    Disadvantages: Immolation reflects damage but it does not actually prevent you from taking any damage (this needs to be tested further). The graphics at the time of this writing are also messed up. There is no visual effect to Immolation so you don't know if it's active or not.

    When to use it: I would still run Enflame over Immolation in PVE. The only advantage I see to this is that it's an instant cast with practically no cooldown, but since it's not usable while controlled Flashpoint and Backdraft both serve those purposes and are more effective.


    Advantages: One of the cheapest powers to use in the fire tree. When used on a burning target, that target releases a Flashpoint that sets everything it touches on fire. Everything that gets set on fire this way is taunted, and unlike Enflame or other methods of setting things on fire, this will refresh the burning and restart the 12 tick timer. Provides a small heal.

    Disadvantages: Due to the targeting system in this game being buggy, it can be difficult to set something on fire from range and then cast Wildfire unless you lock on to said target before using this combination; nine times out of ten, Wildfire will target something that isn't burning and you'll just get a single target knockdown.

    When to use it: You should really only use this power if you routinely run with Fire DPSers in your group to keep things burning cheaply so they don't need to recast Inferno and can just keep spamming Mass Detonation and/or Fireburst until everything is dead.


    Advantages: If you run a "damage tank" build, this is an amazing single target finisher if you clip a weapon combo with it. It's cheap, instant cast, taunts anything it's used on from range, and provides an awesome single target knockup if your target is burning. Seriously; the knockup is insane. This is also an amazing power in PVP for burst damage on controllers and a great way to keep them debuffed.

    Disadvantages: It's primarily a DPS power unless you use it for single target crowd control as a super juggle or to taunt from range. Doesn't really have any use in self healing loadouts and only if you have a damage build where you off-tank since you would get this skill on your way to Mass Detonation.

    When to use it: I use it as a single target finisher when I'm in my "damage tank" build and in PVP. Furthermore, this is amazing crowd control for single targets if used correctly. Use a weapon combo that has a knockup, and clip the knockup move with this while your target is burning. Said target will get launched into the air about four times as high as a normal knockup. Fantastic in duels once your target has run out of power and against Medics in FOS3.


    Advantages: Insant breakout, cleanse, and immunity for you and the three closest members of your group. The four of you gain immunity from debuffs and crowd control effects for a few seconds after using it. It's a decent self heal as well. This power is an absolute must as a fire tank if you're going to be PVPing as it will cleanse your healers.

    Disadvantages: Only breaks out three teammates, and relies on line of sight.

    When to use it: Use it when you need a self heal, a breakout, to cleanse a healer in PVP, or to support the group; it's fairly versatile. A good time to use this in that case is when a teammate goes down and someone goes to revive him; popping this power can give him some immunity and a better chance to successfully revive the teammate. This is also a great move to use when an enemy does a stun attack, AOE, or any other really large power that can wipe the group. The breakout and immunity should be able to give your teammates time to get out of the way of whatever is about to happen. Very useful against Wing Armors and Avatar of Magic's various attacks for this purpose.

    Burnout is the only "Usable while controlled" power in the fire powerset that can be used regardless of the control effect you're under, even if it might not break you out.
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  6. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Fiery Weapon

    Advantages: Provides a heal when striking against a burning target, and increases your chance at dealing critical damage. You can also clip any fire power with this.

    Disadvantages: It will only process once per cast. You have to be careful when you use it because, like all of fire's self healing powers, if you use it at the wrong time the amount of damage you take in from dropping your block will far outweigh the healing you'll get. Unlike Ice Bash, hitting something with your weapon on fire will not taunt it. Has no real use unless you're running a self heal build or you're DPS specced and need some extra healing.

    When to use it: When it's safe to pop it, use it, and always use it to clip something else. I personally don't use this in any of my builds and swap it out for crowd control powers, but other tanks swear by it.

    Absorb Heat

    Advantages: Instant range taunt. Heals for a large amount if it processes fully on a burning target.

    Disadvantages: This power roots you in place so you have to cancel or move out of it in a hurry if something comes near you; if you cancel or get knocked out of it, you don't get the full heal. Casting this when being beat on by high level trash will get you killed.

    When to use it: Bosses are really the only thing you can safely use this on as they're more predictable about giving you enough time to get the full benefit of this power. If a boss resets his aggro table or moves away from the group to go beat on something, this power can taunt from all the way across the room. When using it to taunt, immediately cancel out by blocking or jumping after the first tic.

    Burning Determination

    Advantages: Like Burnout, it's an instant cleanse, breakout, and CC immunity for you and all of your teammates. It will set everything around you on fire for 12 seconds. It provides one heal on casting and will heal you for the same amount for the next three strikes of damage you take against you. Situational in PVE, but an absolute must in PVP.

    Disadvantages: 20 second cooldown timer. If you cast this while in the middle of trash, you'll likely get all four heals before you even finish the cast.

    When to use it: I use this in self healing builds and rotate it every 10 seconds with Stoke Flames for the highest healing possible and to keep everything burning, since I don't have Enflame in those builds(more on that later). I also use it the same way I described Burnout earlier, to provide CC immunity to my teammates when they may need it for various reasons.

    Stoke Flames

    Advantages: Heals for 8 ticks upon casting. Similar to Burning Determination, it will set everything around you on fire. This is the largest self heal you have that doesn't rely on supercharge.

    Disadvantages: It's a costly power, both in terms of power points you need to spend to get it and how much power it costs to use, so it's a power you have to commit to using if you get it. The cooldown timer is 20 seconds, same as Burning Determination.

    When to use it: Treat it the same way you would Burning Determination in a self healing loadout and cast it whenever it comes off cooldown and you have the power to spare or need the healing. It will heal roughly the same amount as Burning Determination with its 4 bigger heals compared to Stoke's 8 smaller heals.


    Advantages: AOE burning from range. Can be combined with Downdraft, Telekinesis, or Polarize to fling it around the room and set everything on fire.

    Disadvantages: The meteor blocks line of sight, so your DPSers are going to be extremely displeased with you when their Final Ruin or Fireburst ends up hitting the meteor you just dropped on the boss and not the boss itself. If you're the type of tank that turns a boss' back to the group instead of to the side, the meteor will block line of sight for your healers to you!

    When to use it: I wouldn't recommend it in tank mode unless you're hybrid specced or DPS specced and are just looking to fill out your tanking bar with instant cast skills. If you do use it, pick it up and throw it as soon as it drops, or throw it to actually start a fight. Even then, I would still only recommend it if you have a mental user in your group with Telekinesis on their bar.

    Consume Objects

    Advantages: Blows up all the inanimate objects around you (including a dropped meteor) and heals you. The explosions also damage any enemies in range. Also destroys encasements.

    Disadvantages: Everything but the heal. This power does not destroy objects like Clown Box or the Scorpinod eggs in FOS1.

    When to use it: I would not use this in a tanking loadout, unless you're running a damage tank build and the players you run with are big on encasements for fun. Even then, you won't do nearly as much damage as a mental or sorcery user popping them. I only put it here because it's a self heal.


    Advantages: 25% supercharge that is basically an instant Immolation+Flashpoint combo. Heals you for a very large amount. With the neckpieces that drop off Braniac in Sub Construct raid and Zod in the third Fortress raid, it basically becomes a spammable. Furthermore, it knocks everything back that can be knocked back regardless of your dominance.

    Disadvantages: It's a supercharge, although a cheap one. It will heal for a large amount, knock mobs back, and it will set stuff on fire; most of the time when you use this power it will only be because you need one of these three effects, so it can be either a good or a bad thing.

    Reignition will not knock up mobs that are currently immune to control effects.

    When to use it: Use it as a great "Oh %&@$" button to give you breathing room and a heal if things start going south, or if you simply have the supercharge to burn and want to start a fight off with it. This power has amazing crowd control and can be combined with a weapon for another "super juggle" move. With my current stats, if I'm fully buffed and pop my trinket, this will crit for over +4000 HP.

    Eternal Flame

    Advantages: Sets things around you on fire and restores a lot of health while being pounded on. This is basically the God Mode button.

    Disadvantages: You only heal while being beat on, so it's more useful against a ton of hard hitting adds or mobs than one or two large attacks from a boss. While using this against a group of mobs will refill your health bar and pretty much make you invincible for a good 12 seconds, it's a 100% supercharge ability that's not as versatile as Reignition. Furthermore, you need to block when using this power. It will not negate the damage that comes in nor will it increase your mitigation; it's entirely possible to take more damage than you heal for with this power.

    When to use it: I usually swap this out back and forth with Reignition for my tanking supercharge, but it's still far too situational for my taste. Black Dawn is really the only place I find myself wishing I had it instead of Reignition, but if the raid fails it's not because I had one over the other.
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  7. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Iconic Powers

    The only two non-innate iconic powers that have any real use to a fire tank are Amazon Deflection and to a lesser extent, Hard Light Shield. Hard Light Shield behaves like every other shield in the game (Boon of Souls, Bastion, Swarm Shield) but it will override any of those shields and not stack with them. Hard Light Shield is also not a very good power for a pure tank as it is for people who stay out of the fray. For a healer or a controller, it can absorb stray hits that get past the tank; with everything beating on you, the shield will lose its effectiveness almost instantly, usually before you even finish casting. Let the healers or controllers throw a shield on you and it will be more powerful.

    Amazon Deflection, on the other hand, is an absolutely amazing power. If you know how to time it right, this will bring your mitigation up to roughly 90% (this number requires more extensive testing - I don't know if it's a modifier applied to your current defense or just a flat rate. I will do more testing on this and report back with the results) and anything that hits you will have a portion of that damage reflected with a chance to stun and knock down. I love using this power on Omac Primes and Omega Sentries or when block just doesn't cut it. It's a godsend in Black Dawn. Since you're going to be spending the majority of your time as a fire tank blocking anyway, this is great if you have the power to burn (and you usually will if the controllers are putting out power for the healers and DPSers). Just make sure that you learn to read different enemies attack patterns and save Deflection for their most devastating attack so it isn't off cooldown when you need to use it. This power will also get you called a hacker more than any other in PVP.

    You can very rarely get knocked out of the actual animation but you can get knocked around for the second it takes to cast. I get the most out of this power by popping an immunity and then hitting this. Make sure that if you're flight that you're on the ground and not flying if you use this as you cannot cancel out of it in the air. Six seconds watching your healer getting wailed on by a boss is an eternity.

    Neo-Venom boost does increase your defense but it's by such a pitiful amount it isn't worth it for the power cost.

    Some superspeed or flight tanks may want to use Mesmerizing Lasso as a single target pull. It's only single target but it's instant and doesn't have the drawbacks that Low Pressure does, so it's up to you.

    The innates you'll want to take depend heavily on the type of build you're going for: Pure tank, self healing tank, or damage tank. No matter what loadout you go with, you're going to want Powerful Resistance which adds 100HP and Intimidating Gaze which will increase your Dominance by 50 in tank role. If you PVP, Nanoweave Armor is a good skill to have but I wouldn't take it over the other two if you don't have the points to spare. If you want an offensive type of tank that you can deal damage with, you usually have a few more points to put into innates. Wisdom of Solomon is a good one as it will increase your power pool. You can also take Weapons Expert and Tactical Genius. In a self healing build you'll want Empathic Healing and Miracle Worker.

    Powers you should never, ever use as a tank

    Anything purely offensive, or anything that roots you in place with a cast time. This includes Fireburst, Snuff Out, Flame Cascade, Mass Detonation, and Spontaneous Combustion. Volcanic Calamity and Fireball Barrage can be useful if you're DPS specced and filling a tank role. Your job is to take damage, not dish it out, and none of these abilities have secondary effects beneficial to tanking.

    Inferno is a special case scenario. This is usually useless unless you're purely DPS specced or you're hybrid specced and you have no other way to set stuff on fire in tank role for a fire DPSer. The amount of damage that Inferno does in tank role is still negligible, and there are cheaper and better ways to set things around you burning. But if you have a hybrid DPS/Tank build where the only thing you change is your armor and hit T, it can be fun and one less thing your fire DPSer needs to worry about.

    Movement Abilities

    Every movement tree has a series of innate knockback and impulse resistance skills that you can purchase that will also help recover power. I would recommend maxing out these abilities. There's also an instant breakout (Launching Roll, Air Burst, and Whirling Dervish) that you may find useful. Be careful with Whirling Dervish in PVP – even if you cancel out of it with another power, you'll get hard stunned if your enemy blocks.

    All movement trees have an ability that breaks out and provides either full on immunity or greatly increased damage mitigation. You may find these better than Eternal Flame and they cost a skill point, not a power point. Perfect Poise can be a good option for some damage mitigation and to increase your speed. The two abilities in Flight and Superspeed are Dustoff and Phase Dodge, respectively. Superspeed also has Metabolism which is a good fire tanking ability.

    If you're flight, Low Pressure is a must as it's a ranged AOE pull, but you absolutely need to learn how to use it well. Low Pressure lags behind where you're facing by about a full second, so you'll need to get used to that. There are two ways to counter this. The first is to be able to anticipate a second or two ahead of where an add will spawn or move so you're already facing the direction the pull will come from. The second way is to move towards the target and simply do a basic ranged attack. By the time the attack animation finishes, Low Pressure's cone will be facing the right direction. High Pressure is an amazing skill as well; I recommend either High Pressure or Flashpoint in your build for crowd control. Tornado Pull in the superspeed and Grapple Line in the acrobatic trees are both single target pulls with their advantages and disadvantages.
    • Like x 9
  8. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Where to spend your skill points

    The two most important areas to spend your skill points on first as you get them are going to be in dominance and health. While dominance has nothing to do with how you generate threat, it does affect your pulls, stuns, and knockdowns along with your self healing and health buff. All of fire's knockdowns and pulls are just a simple check to see if your dominance is higher than the minimum required. Keep in mind that your dominance is doubled in tank role, so each skill point spent in innate dominance will increase it by 14 instead of 7.

    Max out all the Dominance bonuses first. They will be more useful to you than the Health bonuses. When you are in tank mode, the +7 dominance doubles and becomes +30.8 HP when you use a power compared to the +15 HP innates that only become +24 HP in the same situation. Dominance also helps your self healing ability as bonus and your ability to stun with weapons and juggle with powers. After Dominance, you'll want to max out all the Health bonuses in your weapons trees.

    After your dominance and health are maxed out, where you put your skill points after that is largely personal preference. If you're not worried about self healing you can put them into DPS passives to do more damage. If you go with a self healing build you'll want to max out Restoration, Critical Healing Chance and Critical Healing Magnitude to get the most out of it. It really doesn't matter in what order you level those abilities up, so make sure to spread your points equally among those three stats.

    Part 4: Doing your job effectively

    You have several jobs as a fire tank. In order of importance, they are:
    • Keep things off the squishies
    • Support, Positioning, and Crowd Control
    • Keeping things burning for DPSers
    Keep things off the squishies

    This sounds easy, but many tanks are only adequate at it or simply don't. You want to make sure everything the group is fighting is focused on you and you alone. The only reason a majority of tanks in this game can even do this is because any yellow number damage = taunt. Many tanks will get tunnel vision when they're surrounded by a group of adds beating on them and will miss a few on the outskirts of the fight that are targeting their teammates. If you're the only tank in a raid or encounter that is really designed for two tanks, this becomes even more important.

    As a fire tank, you have several options to round up the unexpected stray, all of which take advantage of the instant taunt. When I'm tanking something, I'll usually have my camera zoomed out as much as possible, lock on to my target, and swing the camera around to view the rest of the group. If I see that there are a few adds or mobs that I haven't grabbed, I'll drop my target lock, immediately cast Flashpoint or Backdraft to refresh the taunt on whatever I'm currently tanking, then use a lunge attack towards that second group and immediately cast my second spammable to grab their attention. I then lunge back towards the first group or pick a spot in the middle of the two of them and tank accordingly. Low Pressure works for multiple mobs well if you're flight. If you aren't flight, use your movement pull to grab a single target and sometimes the rest follow; otherwise use the above strategy to grab multiple targets. (Ranged pulling of a sort becomes easier the more you become familiar with Backdraft's range.)

    The need for situational awareness is higher for a tank than it is for any other class in the game, and this holds even more true for solo tanks in raids. You have to know where you are, where everyone else is, and where all the enemies are.

    Once again, you only taunt on the initial cast of a power.

    There's a neat trick you can use for positioning and moving around the map if you're Flight in the Home Turf section.

    Support and Crowd Control

    Doing this puts you in the top 10% of tanks in the game. Burnout and Burning Determination are group breakouts that provide immunity to debuffs and crowd control effects. In PVE these can be essential to helping your team get out of the way of some very large attacks. In PVP they are must haves to help your team and remove debuffs from the healer. In PVE, use these moves when a boss is about to use a huge attack to clear any current team stuns so they can get out of the way.

    Crowd control in a raid mainly falls on the tank. Every mob that is juggled, knocked on its back, or stunned means that mob is not doing damage to you or your team. Controllers don't have many AOE control powers but excel at single targets with encasements and debuffs. Crowd control for the tank mainly consists of juggling and using weapon combos to stun.

    Fire has several options for crowd control and even more if you're flight.

    Here's what I call a "super juggle". I use staff, and one of my favorite crowd control moves is the Downward Smash combo clipped on the last hit with Flashpoint. This will cause all the mobs in the area to get hit with two knockups at the same time, sending them about three times as high as they normally with either attack on its own. I use Detonate the same way on single targets like Reavers and Medics to launch them even higher. Staff is my preference for the AOE knockup, but you can do a super juggle with any weapon that provides a knockup.

    If you're flight, Low Pressure combo'd into High Pressure is amazing. High Pressure on its own will lift mobs into the air and fling them back, keeping them out of the fight for quite a bit of time. Use this combo when airborne, so even if the enemy breaks out, they'll still have to fall to the ground before they attack again.

    One note about support that doesn't fit anywhere else; in the majority of situations, a fire tank should never try to revive a knocked out teammate unless you're the only one who has a chance. What you should do as a fire tank, if someone goes down, is run over to where he is and cast a spammable to get the attention of everyone around the downed player then move away so someone else can revive.

    Keep Things Burning for your DPSers

    Not very important unless you're obviously running with a fire DPS or two as there are many power interactions in the fire trees that rely on the target being on fire for maximum damage. Use taunts or a series of taunts that will set everything burning (Enflame/Immolation – Flashpoint, Wildfire, Enflame – Backdraft, Meteor, Reignition, Stoke Flames, Burning Determination, etc) and it's one less power your DPSer needs to use as a setup to his own nukes. A team of a fire tank and a fire DPS just causes things to melt.
    • Like x 10
  9. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Part 5: Example Loadouts

    I cannot tell you what specific powers to use, but there should be enough coverage of powers in the guide to give you ideas. I can give a few pointers and example loadouts however.

    First off, every power that you use should ideally have more than one use or effect. For example, Backdraft provides both an AOE pull and healing. Enflame gives you control resistance, sets things in melee range on fire, and can be combo'd with Flashpoint. Stoke Flames provides healing and sets everything on fire. Make sense?

    Every fire loadout should try to have at least one way to do the following, in no particular order:
    • A way to set things on fire
    • An instant/spammable AOE
    • A range taunt
    • A range pull
    • A breakout/immunity ability
    • A way to juggle mobs
    • A way to self heal the gap between your healing buff and buffed HP
    As you can see, some powers have more than one use. Backdraft for example covers 2, 4, 6, and 7. Low Pressure covers 3 and 4. Flashpoint covers 2, 6, and sometimes 1 if Enflame is active.

    From all the powers you have available to you, you can see that there are many ways to achieve the same goal. Find a loadout and playstyle that meshes with what you like; there is no one "best loadout."

    I have a few different type of tanking loadouts I run with now that I have 120+ skill points to play with and fill out different innates. I'll list a few example builds here that are a good start.

    Damage Tank: This is pretty much my PVP and speedrun spec. I max out all the DPS innates and spec towards single target damage with enough powerpoints left over to get Backdraft and a few tanking iconics. I also max out Dominance and Health. I use this spec when I need to switch back and forth between DPS and tanking and for speed feats where a tank is sometimes required, but this build relies heavily on my healers.

    Burning Determination - Burnout - (Movement Based Pull) - (Flashpoint or High Pressure) - Backdraft - Supercharge OR Movement Breakout

    BD and Burnout are used as cleanses and to provide immunity in a pinch more so than their self healing abilities. Movement based pull would be either Low Pressure, Tornado Pull, or Grapple Line. If a mob isn't currently aggroed, most mobs are scripted to attack whoever pulled their "teammates" around them.

    Backdraft is once again used for crowd control to round up mobs, and not for its self healing ability. The supercharge is a damage based one, either Fireball Barrage or Vaccuum Bubble. Depending on the raid (T4 raids have an insane amount of knockback) I'll sometimes swap out the supercharge for a movement based breakout to give me bursts of immunity and recover my power, since I don't have Enflame which increases my resistance.

    Burning Determination is the only skill that sets things on fire in this loadout, so you won't be able to keep things burning 100% of the time.

    My gear in this loadout is to wear as many DPS pieces as possible, and swap out pieces with tank gear until my Dominance get high enough for my pulls and knockdowns to land. In high end T3 and T4 content, your self healing is pitiful (I'm lucky if I heal about 5% of the damage I take in) but if your healers are at the same level you're at, there should be no problems keeping you alive.

    Self Healing Tank: I use this loadout when I'm purely tanking to max out my self healing abilities without having to worry about overhealing or draining too much power. I'll have Health, Dominance, Restoration, and the critical healing innates and iconics all maxed out.

    Burning Determination - Stoke Flames - (Movement Based Pull) - (Flashpoint or High Pressure) - Backdraft - Supercharge

    Same deal as before. I always recommend using the movement based pull because it frees up a power point on something else that is useful or something you can use. Cycle between Stoke Flames and Burning Determination every ten seconds and not only will things always be burning, you'll always heal every time you cast Backdraft. My supercharge is either Reignition (4000+ crits are so nice) or Eternal Flame depending on the raid I'm going to run into.

    This build is really only viable if you have the skill points needed to max out all of the self healing innates, which is around 109 with weapon skills and breakout innates.

    I also have to run this build sometimes because the gap between my HP and what my healers can heal is growing so high, as discussed earlier in this guide. I self heal for about 25-30% of my damage with this build, but it eats a lot of power. In T3 and T4 content when this gap starts to grow larger, your controllers should be able to keep up.

    Normal Tank: This is what I used when I was first hitting level 30 content before I needed to do more self healing, and before I had the skill points to make Stoke Flames worthwhile.

    Enflame - (Misc. Power) - (Movement Based Pull) - (Flashpoint or High Pressure) - Backdraft - Reignition

    The miscellaneous power can be either a movement based breakout, Hard Light Shield, or Amazon Deflection, depending on the raid. This loadout has a good mixture of self healing and juggling abilities, and should be sufficient to cover the healing gap.
    • Like x 8
  10. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Part 6: Crafting

    Crafting mods for your tank gear is fairly simple. For your 4 blue sockets you want the highest level Health/Dom you can craft as it will raise your health far higher than dominance or health will raise it by itself.

    Yellow sockets should have Health/Restoration, and red slots should have Health/Precision or Health/Might. It really doesn't matter which one of the two you use as long as you get the Health affinity in the pieces of gear that has it.
    • Like x 7
  11. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Part 7: Home Turf Mods

    The new DLC adds quite a few features for housing, and the mainframe gives you the ability to upgrade your weapons and armors with additional mods that help out. There aren't as many helpful mods for fire tanking as there are for the other two tanks but we do have a few toys to play with. These are purchased by upgrading the batteries in your mainframe, and last for 30 days per purchase.

    I won't explain how the mainframe works here as anyone who gets on Home Turf will have Oracle or Calculator give them a run down.

    A quick note about weapon and neck mods - if the necklace or weapon already has an innate process assigned to it, then you will not be able to equip a mod. This means that SPARC weapons and necklaces from SubConstruct and out of Promethium boxes will not be able to be modded. In that case, you'll have to decide what's more useful - the affinity that's innate to the weapon/jewelry or one from Home Turf mod.

    I'll give my thoughts about each mod.

    Orbital Strike - Levels 1-4

    If you're never going to DPS as a tank, then I wouldn't worry about this unless you have marks left over. It's not so much that it isn't worth it as a tank, but in high end content, the spots in your utility belt can be used for different things for better use. My loadout simply has no room for Orbital Strike, even in the 4 Trinket belt.

    If you do use Orbital Strike, its usefulness becomes tremendous when you get it up to Level 4. Using it will allow you to juggle and CC bosses. If you're short on Marks of Triumph, let one of the other DPSers do it as they'll be spamming it every time it's off cooldown.

    Back-Up - Levels 1-4

    I wouldn't suggest using this either, like Orbital Strike. The backup can clutter up the area around you and block LOS on your pulls. They also tend to die rather quickly like pets in Legends, so you're essentially wasting the spot for nothing. The only benefit the pets have is splitting the damage from AOEs for the one or two hits it takes them to die, as they do not taunt. Besides the drawbacks mentioned, it can also affect your teammates or other people in the raid if their computer has problems rendering all the extra pets.

    Sidekick - Levels 1-4

    The sidekick is really only useful when you get it to level 3 or 4. At that level, the sidekick will taunt enemies. My personal opinion on the sidekick is that once again, it's a wasted trinket spot for a tank. You do have a chance for the sidekick to taunt when aggro resets, but it has many of the same issues as the backup does. If you do pick up the sidekick, pick a weapon that compliments your own - one that throws out a lot of blockbreakers or lunges if you tend to do the other.

    So personal opinion - Don't bother with the sidekick unless you can get him up to level 3.
    • Like x 5
  12. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Supply Drop - Levels 1-4

    This is amazing, and the trinket I would take. Not only is it a huge boost to yourself but it can help your team tremendously, especially if your DPSers are melee. Take the highest level you can afford, but don't go from Level 3 to 4 unless you have everything else you want. The main difference between Levels 3 and 4 is the damage boost it gives - pretty useless to you as a tank, but can help your teammates.

    Tactical Mods - Levels 1-4

    Here we go! This is the most fun section, and there are a lot of different mods to add to your gear and weapon. First off = max this out if you can. Even if you don't use the final levels of mods, the others get a boost from it.

    I'm only going to include the mods I've found that are good for fire tanking, along with some notes about them.

    Weapon Equipment Mods (Level 1):

    Absorption Adapter: Free damage shield every 60 seconds. This absorbs 75% of the incoming damage to you for 12 seconds or until the set amount of damage is absorbed, which changes with each level. The great thing about this is that just like any other shield, it only absorbs damage that you would take after mitigation and blocking. (This is subject to change as I don't know if this is a glitch, but it appears to stack with other shields as well. I know that when it activated and I popped Amazon Deflection, I was barely getting scratched. One would need to test this with a shielding tank like Ice or Earth to know for sure)

    Blast Adapter: Only use it for fun or in a damage tank spec.

    Restorative Adapter: This appears to only work based on your restoration statistic, and while it does give you a free heal every 60 seconds, the shield from Absorption Adapter will absorb more damage than you'll heal for with this.

    Replenishing Adapter: If you ever find yourself in a position where this is useful, then either you or the controllers in your group need to change your playstyle. You're either burning through too much power or your controllers aren't providing enough.

    Neck Equipment Mods (Level 2):

    Fortified Blocking: OMG, YES! This ability gives you an additional 7400 defense while blocking, and increases your maximum mitigation to 80%. Let me explain why this is the most amazing mod in the game for fire tanks.

    You already have a ton of defense as a tank, and this mod essentially allows you to ignore armor piercing because your defensive stat will get raised so high that it will be negated.

    If you remember the discussion earlier about Effective HP and Actual HP, then that 5% jump in mitigation from 75% to 80% raises your Effective HP while blocking from 400% to 500% of your actual HP. To put that in perspective, a fire tank with 5000 health and 750 dominance will have 38,600 effective HP when blocking without this mod. With an added 5% mitigation, that goes to 48,250. This mod is also useful for the other two tank classes. A similar Earth tank with a 50% absorption buff will have their effective HP be 50,000, while the ice tank's will be 25,000 (65,000 w/Reflect)

    Escalating Might: Only useful in a damage tank build.

    Back Equipment Mods (Level 3):

    Breakout Protection: You gain defense and toughness after breaking out, and since you already have so much, it could be beneficial to take as you'll get more of it than someone who isn't a tank.

    Breakout Regeneration: Heals more than Breakout Protection prevents.

    Weakening Field: Only useful in PVP.

    Violent Breakout: To me, this is the most useful. Breakout knocks enemies up and back, allowing you to get back on your feet without getting pounded on, and anything that gets knocked back is also not attacking your teammates for a few seconds. You could use any of the three here, but for my personal playstyle this mod gives me the best bang for my buck.

    Feet Equipment Mods (Level 3):

    Go with whatever feels right for your movement mode. Deadly and Explosive blocks are for PVP.

    If you use Flight, there's a trick you can use with Swooping Combos that is fantastic. If you have the mod and use Low Pressure or Air Burst, you can click the melee button and immediately go into a Swoop Attack that's almost the full range of your target reticle. While this is wasted on the same target (pulling a group with Low Pressure and using Swooping Combos will only knock one back, and the damage it does is white so it's not a taunt) this move is the best move you can do to close gaps and get in quickly. Just because you use a flight power on one target doesn't mean that you need to hit that same target with the combo; you can swoop in any direction the camera is facing. Use Low Pressure to taunt something, and if you have another group to pull, point towards them and then click the melee button to fly towards them. Learn how to master this and you'll be able to fly around the map between targets like Bizarro does in FOS2.

    My favorite method of using this is to combine it with Air Burst. Air Burst refreshes the taunt on whatever I'm currently tanking, and allows me to swoop in towards another target. It's also tremendously useful against bosses that knock you back; using Air Burst will get you back on your feet and you can charge right at the boss again in a split second. Furthurmore, the quick immunity from Air Burst makes it so you won't be interrupted or CC'd while performing the combo.

    Chest Equipment Mods (Level 4):

    Penetrating Strikes: Only useful for PVP.

    Core Strength: Your 20% damage penalty is negated in tank role. Useful for a damage tank build.

    Quick Healing: An additional 10% bonus to Healing Recieved. Great for self healing builds as it also applies to critical heals.

    Reserve Tank: This will almost double the available powerpool you have in tank mode. Can be useful or not depending on playstyle - try it and see if it works.

    Extended Supercharge: This will give you an additional Reignition if you Supercharge bar is completely full.

    Enhanced Recovery: Not useful at all to a tank except in solo content.

    Hand Equipment Mods (Level 4):

    Regenerative Shielding: Only useful if you run Hard Light Shield, otherwise it's useless to a fire tank.
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  13. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Please refrain from posting until I get all my placeholders in place :D
  14. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Please refrain from posting until I get all my placeholders in place :D
  15. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Please refrain from posting until I get all my placeholders in place :D
  16. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Please refrain from posting until I get all my placeholders in place :D
  17. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Please refrain from posting until I get all my placeholders in place :D
  18. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Please refrain from posting until I get all my placeholders in place :D
  19. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Please refrain from posting until I get all my placeholders in place :D
  20. Kristyana Well-Known Member

    Please refrain from posting until I get all my placeholders in place :D

    OK, if I can't say what I need to in 200k characters, then the guide really IS too long

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