- Author: Oxykitten
- Date: June 4, 2022
- Expansion: TBC Classic
Welcome to our Feral Tank gearing guide for TBC. This guide will list the best items available in every slot, how they should be gemmed and enchanted, and present complete sets that are optimised to best fulfill the Feral Tank role in current TBC content. Additionally, this guide will provide some example sets for newer players trying to get into existing raids. This guide is up to date for Sunwell Plateau, and will include sets focused on survivability and on pull variance. To better understand these lists, read the information that follows them below.
Best in Slot gear lists
This phase 5 pre-raid set uses easily attainable gear for someone who has just hit level 70, or perhaps is still levelling! It uses a couple of cheap previous-season honor pieces, and only one reputation piece (Earthwarden, as the Cenarion Expedition reputation needed for it can be bought via Coilfang Armaments on the auction house). This set is strong enough to get you into easy content, such as 10 man raids, heroics, and Gruul/Magtheridon raids.
Click here to view the set on seventyupgrades.
This catch-up set uses attainable gear from easy content for a recent level 70: dungeons, heroics, PvP (no arena), 10-man raids, Gruul’s Lair, Magtheridon’s Lair, and Badges of Justice. While this set may not be quite good enough to tank Sunwell Plateau in, it would enable you to tank in Black Temple and Mount Hyjal to acquire better gear.
Click here to view the set in seventyupgrades.
This set shows the absolute best attainable items outside of Sunwell Plateau. While this is considerably above the minimum gear level required to tank in Sunwell, if you want to be as prepared as possible you cannot go wrong with this set.
Click here to view the set on seventyupgrades.
This set is designed for use on less hard-hitting bosses, such as Felmyst or Lady Sacrolash. Its primary focus is to minimise pull variance; by reaching the hard expertise cap and hit cap, this set cannot miss its attacks and has a pull success (22.5k threat in the first 15 seconds) probability of 99.96%. Additionally, it has a theoretical 0% chance of death with regular incoming heals on these bosses. Note that it has a 20% chance of death on Brutallus, so do not use this set on any very dangerous encounters. Also note that this set assumes the use of Improved Faerie Fire to provide 3% hit, and assumes it is used right at the start of the encounter. If this is not the case for you, simply wear more hit gems (Rigid Lionseyes / Glinting Pyrestones) until you reach 142 rating / 9% hit.
Because this set is specifically designed to reach these caps to minimise pull variance, there aren’t really any alternatives to list for most slots. The main differences that can be made are in the non-expertise items, but those selected here are by far and away the best available (except for Brutal Gladiator’s Shoulders which are omitted due to the high arena rating required for purchase).
Click here to view the complete set, including gems and enchants, on seventyupgrades.
This set is designed to minimise your chance of dying on any given encounter. It is suitable for any encounter in the game, and will produce enough threat on average to hold off your DPS. In this set, threat can sometimes be iffy at the start of an encounter, but this is far less of an issue than random tank deaths. For reference, this set sims at a 3% p(death) on Brutallus while retaining a 97% p(pull success) on Felmyst.
Click here to view the complete set on seventyupgrades.
These sets use a mixture of Defense and Resilience to reach immunity to critical strikes. Any combination can be used, with the cap being 5.6% critical strike suppression on bosses (Druids earn 3% from the talent Survival of the Fittest and therefore only need 2.6% from gear). This is an important goal for all sets to aim for, as eliminating the possibility of critical strikes significantly reduces your risk of dying as a tank.
Some of these sets approach 6% hit, which is the cap when a Balance druid applies Improved Faerie Fire to your target. Reaching hit cap is usually not a goal that you should specifically aim for, as it does not eliminate the chance of getting parried or dodged. In fact, hit cap is simply a limit – hit is a strong threat stat but provides no value above cap for a Feral druid. This means that often as we approach the cap, druids actually use worse items because we cannot make use of the hit rating on certain pieces of gear. Therefore, the only thing to keep in mind when it comes to hit rating is not to waste it; do not be concerned if your set is below the hit cap. Note that, in Sunwell gear, a Druid can reach both hit cap and hard expertise cap, completely eliminating the chance of misses, dodges, and parries on all targets. While this would be very valuable for pull variance, gearing in this way comes at a significant survivability loss and should not be used on hard-hitting bosses.
As a tank, your most important role is not to die. While threat generation is important, your average threat generation when following the correct rotation will be high enough for even the best DPS players while wearing full mitigation gear. While your threat in the first few seconds of the fight may not always be perfect in these sets, the consequence of this is simply waiting a few more seconds to kill the boss. On the other hand, the consequence of dying as a tank is an almost definite wipe for your raid. Therefore, it is generally advised to optimise sets to minimise your chance of death on any given encounter. This is done through the “p(Death)” simulation in Mobmentality’s Beary Good Sim.
Pull variance sets
Your other important role as a tank is to generate enough threat so that your target attacks you (who will not die) instead of your damage dealers (who will die if targeted). While your average threat as a Feral Druid should always be sufficient on a single target (as Ferals generate more single target threat than any other tank in TBC), the first few seconds of an encounter can be a little bit iffy, for example due to your first Mangle missing or getting dodged/parried. A “Pull variance” set will optimise for the highest chance of a successful opener – defined by having a substantial threat lead in the first 10-15 seconds of an encounter. These sets will still be tanky enough to survive most encounters, but if in doubt, use a survivability set to make sure you don’t die. This is also done through Mobmentality’s sim, through the “p(Pull Success)” simulation.
This guide uses links to the helpful gear planning tool, seventyupgrades.com. By using these links, you will be able to visualise the complete sets I have put together, along with the enchants and gems I use in each slot. Additionally, by clicking on “Copy Set” in the top right-hand corner, you can see the set in your own seventyupgrades account. It will also copy over some useful stat weights that you can use to compare the average value of every item in the game for a Feral tank. However, to optimise survivability and pull variance for different items, you will need to use the simulation tool yourself.
Thank you for taking the time to read our Feral Tank BiS guide for TBC Classic. I hope it was helpful, and if you have any questions or suggestions please feel free to leave a comment below, or find me as Oxy on the Druid Classic discord. I’ll be making more guides here on everything to do with playing a Feral in TBC, so stay tuned!