playing tanks, advice appreciated

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dovvntempo

Senior Member

02-08-2010

I've been playing burst dps for awhile. Kassadin, Anivia, Nidalee, Annie, those kinds. But after playing Alistair and a couple others I wanna do an about-face and try to really be able to play a tank and do consistently well.

I wanna try alistair, malphite and rammus. I'll read up on the guides and practice a lot, get familiar with the item builds and whatnot. But what I'd really like from some of the experienced tank players on this forum is the mentality required to play as a tank, or the playstyle. As a frail dps'er I've been hard-wired to wait, bait, run like a little girl, NOT initiate and hunt stragglers and enemies on the outside. That kind of behavior isn't becoming of a tank... so what is?

I'm sure I'll learn this with more practice but what are some of the things you've learned playing tanks that have helped you survive and help your team? any advice appreciated.


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aRcKuS

Senior Member

02-08-2010

I play tank Blitz for my 5's team, and one thing that I have learned for playing a tank is, be in the front. You want to take as much of the damage you can (even if it means you die sometimes) because if you can get an entire team to focus on you, your team will have no problem steam rolling them into the ground. I'm not sure if its the tank thing to do, but I set wards consistently through the game to make it easier on myself as far as positioning.

Typically I go flash / ghost, so I can enter or leave battle very quickly (once I got enough ability's in my face) and also tower dive so your dps can slip through for the kill.

Also, don't worry about getting kills, try always feeding them to your solo, or another damage hero, you'll get enough money from assists and random kills to get you any item you'll need.

Hope this helps.


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FlyingPinkPony

Member

02-08-2010

Depends a lot on how you play/build your tank. The tanks I play are Blitz, Scion, and Kayle. I tend to build them a tad lighter than other folks because in my experience going full tank its difficult to get enemies to target you. Most foes simply ignore you and move on to easier targets since your damage is minimal. What I've found to be more effective is to hybrid tank/damage so you can still soak a good amount of damage but still be a large enough threat to your enemies to warrant being targeted. Playing an effective tank is a balance between being difficult to kill, but not too difficult to kill the enemy ignores you.

Each of the tanks you mentioned I don't play very often but my limited experience with them leans me to believe that each play very differently. If you want to build a true nearly unkillable tank, my suggestion would be to give Kayle a try. High HP/Arm + 6 second invuln + heal makes a nearly unkillable tank (though alistair w/ ult comes close). You become very low on the damage scale but as aRckus said your main goal is to get out in front. One other small thing is if you and a few allied heroes are alone by a tower feel free to jump in and start tanking it. Your allies will get the hint and back you up (ideally). This is a great way to finish off/ severly damage a tower that would otherwise remain untouched.

My 2cents.


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MSpawn311

Junior Member

02-08-2010

personally the tanks that you are wanting to play are better off being pure tanks. Meaning all ur items will be health or armor items. It doesn't really matter if no one targets you as an Alistar because you have so much disable that you decide who attacks what. That is the job of a tank, to initiate combat and who better than a big cow? Flash with him is OP, flash and headbutt to ur team even in tower range, it means nothing to Alistar to take some tower hits. Also I agree with the one poster that said you have to be willing to die. All too much you see tanks behind the dps, that is a big NO NO. As the tank you have to stay in front no matter how daunting the situation. Obviously don't stick around for a 5v1 or a situation you are outnumbered in. Also check the damage champion that is taggin along. Do they look like they can kill someone (do they have right items?)?
So dont stick around ****py dps or you both will die


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nicosharp

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Senior Member

02-08-2010

you have to call the shots, good or bad, you got to call them, and have to lead the charge. constantly have to set up opportunities to isolate yourself, to pull 1 enemy out, or an entire team, and have your team close enough by to pick up the pieces once they unload on you. You have to find ways to push towers, and take a few hits, while downing enemy champs, and how to keep carries from dying. Short-order I know..

The most important though is the first thing I said. Call the shots, good or bad. The better you get at calling the shots, and leading your team rather than them leading you, the better tank you can be. dps needs to know when you are ready, not vice-versa. Map awareness is crucial, and taking advantage of every opportunity to push and gank, as no one is quite as good at it as a tank (besides maybe a stealth char, or of course, TF.)


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Ace04uries

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Recruiter

02-08-2010

Along with some of what the other posts of stated, from my personal experience, it's about creating opportunities and what is in the best interest for your teammates. A large portion of this is the understanding of engagement with the enemy, and more specifically, the timing of engagement.

If you are having your standard western stare-down showdown between teams, you want to be able to be confident enough to walk into the enemy team (with your teammates close behind) and immediately take control of the situation. Having a lot of health, armor, magic resist, etc. is an important factor when doing this, but it is equally important to attempt to disable either part or the entire team for a short duration. This creates an opening for your team to follow up and destroy the opposing team, as well as increases your chances of survival.

Don't be afraid of the fact that you have a high chance of dieing (though, obv., don't feed, as that is very different than what I'm discussing). That is just part of being a tank in this game. You just want to survive long enough for your team to take out at least one (or more) of your opponent's weaker members (in terms of survivability) or a tower [depending on situation]. Even if you were to die soon after, it wouldn't matter as much because you tipped the fight in your team's favor. It's almost always better for you to die then someone else on your team during fights. Attempt to save your teammates as often as possible without being reckless about it.


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dovvntempo

Senior Member

02-08-2010

hmm, I think I'm getting it. lead the charge, lead the team, and find ways to make team fights end out in our teams favor, regardless of whether I die or not. A tall order, but I think it'll make me a better player.

thanks for the tips everyone. I'll refer to this again and again.


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Klazzix

Senior Member

02-08-2010

Tank mentality. Lead the way, march in, die for the greater good. Or not, always get Guardian Angel.

PS Pray for a competent carry in your team.


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GnomeChomsky

Senior Member

02-08-2010

The three tanks you talked about playing are probably the three purest tanks, as far as being able to initiate / cc / mitigate damage... so that's a good thing!

Alistar is generally regarded as the best tank so I'd suggest starting with him. Here's a mini-guide to him that focuses on a balanced tank build with tons of team support:

Skills, Mastery, Runes

L1: Q
L2: E
L3: W
L4: Q
L5: Q
L6: R
L7: Q
L8: E
L9: Q
L10: W
L11: R
R > W > E from here on out.

0/9/21 mastery with Clarity/Flash, Ghost/Flash, Clairvoyance/Flash, or Exhaust/Flash
I recommend Clarity/Flash.

Red: Armor Pen, Yellow: Dodge or MP/5, Blue: Flat CDR or MR/18, Quints: I like Flat HP here but a lot of good options

Item Build
Dorans and 1x Pot
Sheen and Boots
Aegis of the Legion
Finish Boots (Mercs or Tabi depending on enemies)
Soul Shroud

Brief Justification
Leveling Pulverize up first is most important as it deals the most damage in team fights and is useful for farming throughout the game. Heal is brought to Rk 2 and then stopped, as it loses mana efficiency as you level it.

Utility mastery is best, and 9 in defense lets you get the dodge boost. You need the CDR / mana regen / xp bonus / summoner spell reduction in the utility tree. The large CDR in flash is most important.

This item build is a balanced build that works against any team composition. You vary your boot choice based on the enemy, otherwise it works versus magic or physical heavy teams. Other tank items give you more raw personal mitigation, but Ali needs this less than other tanks because his ultimate is so effective and deters people from attacking him. Because of this it's better to go Aegis, still giving hefty mitigation to yourself but also making your team tougher. The Aegis gives your team a large aggregate boost to damage/armor/mr. Soul Shroud gives another team aura, but also stacks more HP for you and gives you CDR, letting you CC more frequently.

The CDR that Soul Shroud gives is more helpful to certain team compositions. It's especially nice when your carry is TF or Annie. Note that if you don't go Clarity as a summoner spell you should get a Mana Manipulator early on at some point.