The Tank or Defensive role is one of the four roles available in DC Universe Online. It is the Tank's role to keep the group safe by attracting enemies' attention by aggravating or taunting and absorbing their attacks with high levels of defense, toughness, dominance and health. The symbol that represents a tank is a Shield.
In order of importance:
- Health : The amount of damage a player can take in battle
- Dominance : Dominance affects Control Effects, Self Healing and Shield Damage Prevention
- Defense : Reduces incoming damage from non player opponents
- Restoration : Affects Self Healing and Shield Damage Prevention
- Critical Healing Chance & Critical Healing Magnitude : Affects Self Healing for Fire Tanks
Earth Tanking Edit
Using a power in Tank role will grant 25% Damage Absorption and will increase Defense and Toughness by 1 point for every point of Dominance. Aftershocks from Gemstone Shield, Jackhammer & Upheaval will further increase Damage Absorption. Reinforce will transfer incoming damage from a team member to you while Damage Shift will transfer a portion of your incoming damage to a summoned golem.
Using a power as a Fire tank will increase a character's Health by 60% and any healing taken (with the exception of Soder Cola) will be increased by 80%. This effect lasts 12 seconds. Fire Tanks also have their dominance increased by 100% and gain additional Health based on their Dominance score with 2.2 additional Health for every point of Dominance. Healing caused by Fire abilities scale with Dominance combined with Restoration. Powers that are affected include Absorb Heat, Backdraft, Burning Determination, Wildfire, Burnout, Consume Objects, Fiery Weapon, Stoke Flames, Eternal Flame and Reignition.
Fire tanks play differently from Ice in that they possess several self-healing abilities, which will ease the healer's job, as well as possibly survive long enough to finish a fight if the healer has been taken out of the fight. It is therefore a good idea to invest any extra skill points into Restoration, healing critical chance and magnitude. However, this is a very power-intensive playstyle and without a controller providing extra power, a Fire tank will easily run dry unless they are careful.
Using a power as an Ice tank will increase a character's Defense and Toughness by 90%. This effect lasts 8 seconds, gaining Ice Armor will keep this buff up for the full duration, roughly 48 seconds. Winter Ward, Bitter Winds, and Shatter Restraints prevent additional damage equal to 100% of Restoration combined with 100% of Dominance. Ice Elemental prevents damage equal to Dominance combined with Restoration. Healing from Hibernation and Ice Elemental scales with Dominance combined with Restoration.
Ice tanks rely entirely on damage mitigation, and while they do possess some self-healing it is not designed for consistent use. Ice tanks should invest all skill points into defense first as the 90% boost means you're getting double your value; after all defense points are taken, place skill points into bonus Health. Ice tanking is much less power consuming than Fire, making it the best choice if there isn't a controller in the group.
Recommended Powers and SkillsEdit
Tanks should choose their passive and active skills and powers with some foresight, as loadouts are limited to only 6 abilities and tanks must remain as versatile as possible.
There are 5 weapon styles which each give a bonus of up to +30 Defense and +30 Toughness (10 per point invested for a maximum of +150 Defense and +150 Toughness). These 5 weapon styles are Bow, Dual Pistols, Dual Wield, Martial Arts and Staff and can always be usefully invested in. Refer to the Weapon Styles page for a breakdown of innate bonuses. With higher tiers of gear, total Defense and Toughness can be large enough that your innate level isn't as important. Consider increasing Dominance instead if you're focused on a pure tank role, and the Re-Spec Device can make a change of already spent power and skill points.
Choosing a weapon type should rely almost entirely on the stats they give. The weapon is merely there to help the power generation and provide additional crowd control and movement, which is why the only bad tanking weapon style is Rifles as they lack a lunge attack, which hinders a tank's mobility.
All movement modes share two general perks useful to tanks. The first of these are skills is a targeted pull that allows the tank to pull enemies towards them - Low Pressure (Flight), Tornado Pull (Super Speed), and Grapple Line Attack (Acrobatics), out of which Grapple Line Attack is the only one that isn't an area effect. Getting one of these abilities may be helpful to a Fire tank as a targeted Pull as Backdraft only pulls in nearby opponents.
The second is the power restore upgrade to Breakout and some crowd control resistance. Getting these passive skills will cost an extra 5 points. These abilities are particularly useful for tanks during hard alerts and raids.
Iconic Powers will taunt and activate Tank role bonuses just as super powers found in the main trees.
Several active Iconic Powers may be useful to Tanks including:
- Hard Light Shield: Damage Prevention = Restoration + Dominance
- Self Heals if using the Empowered Channeling Hands Equipment Mod
- Useful for a Fire Tank as there is no Shield in either Fire tree
- Amazonium Deflection: Adds 5000 Defense; Knocks down & Stuns nearby opponents
- Prevents Control Effects and Counters including Block Breakers
- Sonic Cry: Stuns nearby opponents
- Mesmerizing Lasso: Ranged single target Pull
- Useful as a ranged single target pull for a Fire Tank as Backdraft is a short range area Pull
- Pheromone Bloom: 35% Supercharge; Self Heal; Knocks down & Stuns nearby opponents
- Useful as a Self Heal for an Earth Tank as Envelop prevents movement
- Word of Power: 50% Supercharge; Self Heal; Knocks back nearby opponents
- Provides power to self and group
A few Passive Iconic powers could be useful to Tanks:
- Powerful Resistance: Adds 100 Health
- Fire Tanks have a 60% Health bonus so this adds 160 Health after a power is used
- Intimidating Gaze: Adds 25 Dominance; Dominance doubles in Tank Role so this adds 50 Dominance
- Dominance is added to Restoration for Self Heals
- Dominance affects damage prevention Shields
- Fire Tanks gain 2.2 points of Health for each point of Dominance so this adds 110 Health
- Earth Tanks gain 1 point of Defense for each point of Dominance so this adds 50 Defense
- Nanoweave Armor: Adds 50 Defense & 100 Toughness
- Ice Tanks have a 90% Defense & Toughness bonus so this becomes 95 Defense & 190 Toughness
- Damage Shift increases resistance to control effects by 10%.
- Unstoppable provides temporary Control Effect Immunity to teammates.
- Damage Shift transfers 25% of incoming Damage to a summoned Golem.
- Reinforce transfers 30% of incoming Damage from a teammate to the caster.
- Gemstone Shield, Jackhammer and Upheaval increase Damage Absorption for every Aftershock.
- The higher health Brick Golem will taunt opponents if the health of the caster falls below 40%.
- The Crystal Golem uses Control Resistance abilities which may be useful in PVP.
- Totem heals any nearby Golem by a small amount.
- Earthen Grip is useful as a long range single target pull.
- Epicenter pulls all nearby enemies toward the caster.
- Envelop prevents damage and heals for a small amount but also prevents movement.
- Enflame and Immolation increase resistance to control effects by 10%.
- Burning Determination and Burnout provide temporary Control Effect Immunity to teammates.
- Absorb Heat, Backdraft and Fiery Weapon will self heal when used on Burning enemies.
- Dominance increases Healing from Absorb Heat, Backdraft, Burning Determination, Burnout, Consume Objects, Eternal Flame, Fiery Weapon, Reignition, and Stoke Flames.
- Immolation (Immolation) grants 10% control resistance, damages nearby enemies, and is usable while controlled.
- Backdraft (Ignition) will pull nearby enemies toward you and self heal when used on Burning enemies.
- Flashpoint (Immolation) will provide a quick area effect knock-up with a low cooldown, power cost and damage. Applies burning on enemies while Immolation is active.
- Burnout (Immolation) will provide self healing and crowd control immunity to the entire group, making it an excellent PvP power.
- Meteor Strike (Immolation) is a way of applying Burning at range and the meteor itself can be thrown for a good chunk of area damage.
- Enflame (Immolation) provides a reliable way of applying Burning to targets in melee range and adds 10% to your control resistance.
- Fiery Weapon (Immolation) will self-heal when attacking a Burning enemy. This will trigger only once per activation.
- Absorb Heat (Ignition) will stun and self-heal when used on a Burning enemy.
- Reignition (Immolation, 25% Supercharge) provides a strong self-heal and will apply Burning.
- Eternal Flame (Ignition, 100% Supercharge) will double the character's health and self-heal for a small amount every time the character is hit, making it very effective when swarmed by numerous enemies.
- Cold Snap, Ice Bash and Reflection provide a Chill effect. Five consecutive Chill Effects activates Ice Armor which provides the 90% Defense Tank bonus for about 48 seconds.
- Cold Snap and Bitter Winds increase resistance to control effects by 10%.
- Bitter Winds, Shatter Restraints and Winter Ward prevent damage based on Dominance.
- Shatter Restraints and Winter Ward provide temporary Control Effect Immunity to teammates.
- Reflection prevents damage from the next three attacks and deflects some damage back to opponents.
- Inescapable Storm (Storms) is useful to pull a group of enemies off allies.
- Winter Ward (Cryogenics) increases your defense and breaks you and your group from Control effects
It is the job of a tank to reduce the overall damage a group takes. A Tank should disable and taunt enemies whenever possible with area effect powers that knockdown, juggle or stun. Pulling enemies and gathering them in one large group will make this easier. Powerful attacks should be dodged by moving out of range or breaking line of sight.
Blocking is extremely effective if done right. It will reduce incoming damage by approximately 70%, interrupt most weapon combos by stunning the attacker and provide protection against most crowd control effects. A Tank should always block if overwhelmed and the healer(s) can't keep up with the damage or if a big attack is coming and can not be dodged. However, blocking too long may strain power generation and cause enemies to bypass the Tank as active powers are necessary to taunt opponents.