Dragonflight Tank Rankings - Guide Writer First Impression

Hey everyone, Scruffy here! Today, while it’s pretty quiet around the house of Blizzard Activision, we want to provide you our first Dragonflight Tank Rankings! This time, instead of compiling dozens of Logs, we ran multiple test runs with all the six available Tank specs. As always, keep in mind that changes can happen at any time, and you should not take this List as final!

You can also watch our Tierlist on Youtube

Table of Contents

Disclaimer:

How did we run our Tests:

  • We ran Algeth’ar Academy as our Benchmark – Read our Guide here!
  • This Dungeon consists of  4 Bosses, and frequently big pulls with many Enemies at the same time
  • We ran Dungeons multiple times, and took an average of all the runs we did – Every run differs from the last one
  • We ran the Mythic Keystone on Level 10, without any Affixes
  • Overall Efficiency is how we rate the following classes

S-Tier: Protection Warrior

Warriors have been the glorious Tanks at the beginning of the Dragonflight Beta. Despite many nerfs to bring the Warrior Tanks back in line with other Tanks, it performs extremly strong in comparison to all the other classes. We used these Talents

The Talent Tree is pretty straight forward. You were, in comparison to other classes, not making difficult choices between certain benefits. Due to its already high survivability, we were able to skip many Talents affecting Last Stand and Demoralizing Shout. 

Anger Mangement is capable to give us an insane cooldown reduction for our damage cooldown Avatar. But this will also decrease the remaining cooldown on Shield Wall, which will use as our important Utility – Unbreakable Will. This has been a Legendary during Shadowlands, and is now found as a talent in the Protection talent tree. All Rage gain is fueled by Bloodsurge. Rend now applying automatically on all targets hit by Thunderclap, Deep Wounds affecting all enemies aswell, and with Thunderous Roar granting us an additional Bleeding Effect. 

Survivability of Protection Warriors are great due to their new Tierset, granting them consistent Damage Reduction after using Revenge. Additionally, you gain Ignore Pain by simply dealing a lot of damage (5% of your damage). 

Coupled with an insane Rage gain due to your bleeding effects, Indomitable grants you 3% of your Health everytime you spend your rage on Revenge (1% per 10 Rage). With a straight forward talent tree, we are also able to spend an additional point into Ravager. 

Our Conclusion:

  • Damage: 10/10 (~34000 DPS)
  • Survivability: 9/10
  • Utility 8/10

 

In the current state, we cannot see how Warriors could be beaten in Efficiency in Mythic Keystones. 

S-Tier: Vengeance Demon Hunter

Demon Hunters performed exceptionally well in our Test Runs. We also found that Single Target damage of Vengeance Demon Hunters have been the strongest in our Test Runs. Especially in regards to the still running Shadowlands Season 4, we saw that Death Knights damage output in Boss situations have been a determining factor for its efficiency. We used these Talents in our runs

With Fiery Brand heavy talents on the right side of the Talent Tree, we went with Frailty spreading talents on the left side. This has caused the Demon Hunter to gain huge survivability, paired with a strong damage output with stunning two Covenant Abilities: The Hunt and Elysian Decree. Collective Anguish is another Shadowlands Legendary that we are able to utilize to increase our overall damage output. We missed out on Sigil of Misery in our Test runs, but with the additional talent for it, you could potentially increase your overall damage output even further.

With great Utility for the group with Sigil of Silence and Chaos Brand, potentially skilling into Sigil of Chains, a Soothe, AoE Stun and Darkness, Demon Hunters can pack a huge amount of Crowd Control for your group.

Demon Hunters are extremly strong against magical damage with their talents. This makes them extremly useful in dungeons like Azure Vault that will cause this.

Our Conclusion:

  • Damage: 9/10 (~32500 DPS)
  • Survivability: 9/10
  • Utility: 9/10

 

Especially if the DPS Rankings are shifting towards more casters in Mythic+, we could see Demon Hunters as the next Meta.

A-Tier: Blood Death Knight

With being the current Meta Tank in Mythic+ during Shadowlands Season 3 and 4 due to their Tier Sets, we had high hopes into Blood Death Knights. And we can confirm, its self-sustain is extremly high, allowing even more risky pulls in your Dungeon runs. We used this talent tree to run our tests

Abomination Limb is a great example of a Covenant ability, whenever players demanded a removal of Borrowed Power, but without this ability the class wouldnt feel complete anymore. With this ability moving forward in the general Death Knight talent tree, we can see them continuing the trend of being a ‘grippy’ tank.

Shattering Bones has received a significant nerf. Everytime a charge on Bone Shield is removed, it explodes for heavy damage. This sadly has caused Death Knights to fall off in damage in comparison to other tanks. Whenever we used our cooldowns all together, we were able to peek in our damage, especially in heavy AoE situations. Due to Shattering Bones being still one of the most important damage sources, we felt sad everytime another Shaman has placed an Earth Elemental. This caused our Bone Shield to not lose any charge, and Death Knights can fall off in damage pretty quick.

Survivability for Death Knights is undeniably strong, allowing us to pull even more enemies at the same time, without stressing out our Healer too much. Dancing Rune Weapon still granting a great source of Survivability and extra damage during those big pulls, we feel that this ability to scale very well in bigger pulls will grant the Death Knights a solid ranking in our Tier List.

Our Conclusion:

  • Damage: 7/10 (~28000 DPS)
  • Survivability: 10/10
  • Utility: 8/10

 

By using Warriors and Demon Hunters as our Benchmark, we feel that Death Knights are not reaching the same amount of efficiency as those. The possibility of giantic pulls will make it worth to bring a Death Knight in your Dungeon.

A-Tier: Protection Paladin

We are still sad about the sudden change in how we played Protection Paladin during Shadowlands Season 3 and Season 4. With the Tier Set granting us randomly proccing Judgements on enemies, and with Avengers Shield granting Holy Power, we were able to easily run Keystones without a healer present. Instead, Paladins were capable of keeping the group alive. This is gone with the removal of the Shadowlands Tier Set Bonus, and the removal of Holy Power gain on Avengers Shield. We used the following talents for our Paladin testing

The Paladin talent tree offers (in our opinion) too many powerful options, which will lead to players making difficult decisions whenever chosing a talent. Paladins can provide a great amount of damage, while missing out on a bit more Survivability. We chose this talent tree to find a decent middle ground between Damage and Survivability.

With this talent tree, we are granted consistent cooldown reduction on all of over strong defensive cooldowns like Divine Shield, Ardent Defender and Blessing of the Ancient King. We also feel that this could make Paladins an exceptionally strong Tank for Raiding in Dragonflight, but we have to focus on Mythic+ today.

New utility granted to Paladins is the Combat Rezz Intercession. With the regular Utility of Blessing of Protection, Blessing of Sacrifice and Blessing of Freedom, those are considered pretty niche Utility for your party. Paladins to pack an unreachable amount of Interrupts due to their Avengers Shield. This can potentially outperform Demon Hunter’s Sigil of Silence in a situation where a lot of interrupts were needed.

Our Conclusion:

  • Damage: 8/10 (~29000 DPS)
  • Survivability: 9/10 
  • Utility: 7/10

 

Without any utility granted to your party like Demon Hunters or Warriors, we have to give Paladins an A-Tier ranking. Paladins will be a great option for your Mythic Keystone overall due to their above average damage, and high survivability.

B-Tier: Guardian Druids

We are extremly excited to announce that we were able to rank Guardian Druids higher after getting into more testing with our Talent Trees. We did not anticipate the same playstyle as during Shadowlands, which consisted by spamming Trash, and gaining almost invincibility during their 3-minute cooldown Berserk. We are really happy that we found a way to make Galactic Guardian to work pretty well. We used the following talents

This playstyle seemed to be a lot of fun, and causing our overall damage to be above Paladins and Death Knights, but still below Warriors and Demon Hunters.

With Galactic Guardian, you are having a chance to randomly trigger Moonfire on your target, combined with all other talents increasing your arcane damage. This will also trigger a second Moonfire on a second random target that has not yet been afflicted with Moonfire before. 

Despite the significant nerf to Ursoc’s Fury, granting only 30% of the damage of Trash as an absorb shield, with Circle and Life and Death we can compensate this nerf a little bit. Ursoc’s Fury grants its absorb shield even from the bleeding debuff applied to the enemy. Additionally, with Elune’s Favor granting 30% of our Arcane damage as heal, we are able to compensate all the survivability we thought Guardian Druids would lose over the nerf to Ursoc’s Fury. Keep in mind that we considering this for the overall performance in a dungeon. This might heavily differ in Single Target situations.

Utility for Guardian Druids remain still pretty weak. While we are capable of skilling Innervate in our General Tree, we had to make a decision between other paths in the talent tree. We had our Incapacitating Roar and Stampeding Roar, but were missing out on Mass Entanglement and even Typhoon. 

Our Conclusion:

  • Damage: 9/10 (~30000 DPS)
  • Survivability: 9/10
  • Utility: 5/10

 

We can only suggest to every Druid fan to test this build. It provided a lot of fun, and we were overwhelmed how spamming Trash transformed into almost spamming Moonfire.

B-Tier: Brewmaster Monk

Brewmaster Monks have currently the biggest potential to increase in this Tier List, but we were not able to make those wishes reality. With a talent tree that either favors survivability or damage output, we had to make many adjustments to Brewmasters over the course of our test period. After a long time of testing, these were the talents used

This talent tree still favors damage a little more, and was not even used in our Youtube Guide. We had to focus even more on Survivability and cooldown reduction of our brews. Every boss in Algeth’ar Academy applies a strong Tank debuff, that had to be mitigated so frequently, that we had to chose more cooldown reduction.

In comparison to other tanks, we were also not quiet stable enough for giantic pulls without kiting around. This reflects in our overall damage being at the lowest in comparison to other Tanks. But we want to incentivize that there is great potential for Brewmasters that we could not yet unleash.

With Mystic Touch granting 5% additional Physical damage taken to enemies, Leg Sweep as an AoE stun, heavy crowd control with Ring of Peace and Paralysis, combined with great movement abilities like Roll and Tigers Lust, we can only repeat again how much potential we see in Brewmasters.

Our Conclusion:

  • Damage: 7/10 (~28000 DPS)
  • Survivability: 7/10
  • Utility: 9/10

 

People should not knock off Brewmasters just yet. We felt the most unconfident about our decision for Brewmasters. The Talent tree offers too many significant choices that could lead into one way or the other. We might have not gotten the right impression of Brewmasters in our tests. This class is definetly something you should have an eye on in the future!

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