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A Deeper Look into 1.3 Guardian Tank Changes

The only problem I currently have with my Guardian is threat generation. The 1.3 patch notes have me super excited with all of the threat changes. The mitigation buffs are not bad either!

No matter the gear and how many threat moves I get off on Toth in the first pull of Denova the DPS without my Guard buff gets aggro. I appreciate that threat generation is not as easy as Paladin tanking in World of Warcraft, but not being able to remotely hold aggro against equally geared DPS is nuts as long as i get my full rotation off without a hitch.

Lets break this down change by change;

[quote]The amount absorbed by Blade Barrier now scales properly based on character stats.[/quote]

Though my biggest concern was threat, mitigation would be greatly appreciated as well! To be honest I noticed that this ability seemed to come up short, so with it scaling correctly I should be slightly less squishy.

[quote]Soresu Form now generates 100% additional threat while active.[/quote]

This is the start of the blanket threat improvement mentioned by Austin Peckenpaugh. This will make it a bit less challenging overall to hold aggro without making it WoW Paladin easy.

[quote]Single Saber Mastery now applies different effects based on your current Form. Shii-Cho Form now increases all Force damage dealt by 2% per point. Shien Form now increases all melee damage dealt by 2% per point. Soresu Form now increases melee and ranged defense by 1% per point and increases the threat generated by Force Sweep and Cyclone Slash by 10% per point.[/quote]

This is a general quality of life upgrade for all Guardian specs, but the big part to pay attention to is what I have in bold. More mitigation (as I said always welcome) and the tool that will make me have the AoE threat I need for bosses with adds, and big AoE burn pulls like the dogs in EV.

[quote]Dust Storm: Cyclone Slash now additionally applies this accuracy debuff to affected targets.[/quote]

Another great mitigation tool that will help with raid mitigation. I say this because if I lose aggro on things that have this debuff on them the accuracy applies to all.

[quote]Blade Barricade: Riposte now increases melee and ranged defense by 1% per point and lasts 12 seconds.[/quote]

Ok, so this is a nerf and a buff. The amount of defense was reduced to balance the 3% that is permanent through “Single Saber Mastery.” I like this better because if I am unable to get Riposte off because I am hit with something that I cannot defend against I only loose 3% defense.

[quote]Profound Resolution has been replaced by Purifying Sweep, which causes Force Sweep to apply 2 stacks of armor reduction per point to all affected targets.[/quote]

Now I have a reason to put points into the spot where this talent was. This is going to work well with how they changed Guardian Slash.

[quote]The damage dealt by Hilt Strike has been reduced, but this ability no longer costs Focus to activate.[/quote]

Though I loved the damage output of Hilt Strike, I like the idea that it will be a free threat move better. One thing to mention though… The never say what is going to happen to the talent Solidified Force which reduces the cost of Hilt Strike by one per point up to two points…

[quote]Guardian Slash has been slightly altered. The ability still applies 3 stacks of armor reduction. Damage dealt by this ability has been reduced, but when the target is affected by 5 stacks of armor reduction, Guardian Slash now deals damage to up to 2 nearby enemies, spreading 3 stacks of armor reduction to those enemies and knocking down Standard and Weak targets. It does not deal damage to sleeping, lifted, or incapacitated enemies, and continues to generate a high amount of additional threat.[/quote]

This is a brilliant change that will work well with Profound Resolution because in two moves I can have three targets at five stacks of armor reduction without ever switching targets. The fact that it also drops damage for CC’ed targets, but still applies the threat is what really makes this brilliant for trash pulls in Ops.

Overall this patch is breathing new life into tanking for me and I have yet to get my hands on it. I hope this does the same for everyone’s classes.

PS: Healers got boned in this patch so please no hate mail for the comment above… Though I think healing is where it needs to be and the rest will catch up with this patch.




About Brandon (Ragorik)

Community Manager/Writer for Twonk Hammer || Graduate of UTDallas with B.S. in Communication Science and Disorders


  1. +1 for fixing blade barricade, almost felt useless most of the time.

  2. “Piff… threat generation… PvE Carebears…”

  3. I’m so glad to see this changes. I had pretty much shelved my Guardian for the fact that threat was so poor on it.

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