Main Spec Versus Offspec in Heroics

I’ve always been a big believer in rolling on the gear of the role that you’re playing in heroics.  I realize that gear in five mans is basically inconsequential at the moment – save for a few pieces in the ICC five mans.  But something happened today that made me think a bit.

I’ve been trying to get the tyrannical beheader for my paladin’s ret offspec.  She’s main spec prot but I queued her as dps for H-PoS.  20 Minute wait.  Queue finally pops and we’re in.  The group looks great!  The warrior tank is super geared, as are the other two dps.  The healer is a bit undergeared but within acceptable margins… and with an overgeared tank – that won’t be a problem.  Tank takes off and hollers that he’s going to chain pull this place and to stick close to him and follow his directions.  We start down the hill.  The hunter accidently pulls a group the tank tried to skip and the tank ends up pulling 2 more groups.  A warrior tank, plus mobs that won’t gather up… yeah bad formula.  Despite our best efforts to help and CC, we end up wiping and naturally, the tank drops.

We run back in and requeue.  I queue as dps, but throw on my tanking gear/spec.  I know that in the early afternoon it could be a ten minute wait for a tank even so.  We wait a few minutes, get buffs and take off.  My pally’s main set is VERY well geared for an alt and I know how to handle her.  My hubby’s been a pally since vanilla and he’s taught me quite a bit.  Suddenly the queue pops back up.  I requeue as dps, and the group leader fusses and said that she did that so I could queue as tank.  I replied that I was here for the tyrannical beheader only and that I’d queued as dps for that reason – because I didn’t want to deal with the QQ when I rolled on it as the tank.  First boss goes down and we’re almost to the second boss before I talk a guildie into coming and tanking for us.

But that begs the question of what I should have done?  When I go for the NES on any tanking toon for their offset I’ve always queued as dps.  I know a lot of people say role doesn’t matter… but there’s nothing more annoying than losing something you’re after to the tank or healer [or to a dps if you’re a tank/healer].  After I replied, what I did, the group didn’t question it at all…  I know they were a bit peeved that we were sitting there waiting for a tank for quite a while and having to effectively 4 man things.  Had I not gone tank, given how long we were sitting it would have just fallen apart.  But again, I don’t want to be dishonest.  I spent the 20 minutes in queue as dps waiting for H-PoS specifically.  I paid the dues for a dps spot…  I was what I consider honest and ethical about trying to get a piece of offset loot.

Should I just queue my pally as tank for h-PoS from now on and roll on what I please?

What would you do?

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Author: Askevar

Raid leader and Tank. Also is an altoholic

24 thoughts on “Main Spec Versus Offspec in Heroics”

  1. Whilst I personally tend not to roll against dpsers when I queue as a healer or vice versa when I’m playing dps, I’m not too sure it matters in 5 mans. Dual specs have been around a while now, people should be used to the idea that the person playing a tank isn’t always a tank for example.

    In terms of group harmony it’s probably best to say you intend rolling on X at the start of the group though. That way you can gauge the feelings and decide whether you feel comfortable with the idea.

    However I would rather have a tank rolling on dps loot than have to wait hours for tank.

  2. Everybody has dual specs– everybody understands that people are rolling for their main as well as their off specs, and that the spec someone is using right that moment might not be their main.

    Also, it’s a 5-person heroic. Everybody can run it again tomorrow, and the day after that, and the day after that. The loot so often gets disenchanted without thought! I’d just roll on it and let the luckiest person win. If you’re truly worried, just say something at the beginning about how you’ll be rolling for your off spec, or for a specific item. People generally understand that.

  3. I tend to get more fussed with a dps rolling on tank loot than vice-versa, but even that… well, since the LFD system was put in place pretty much all of the traditional reservations about who gets to roll on what gear has pretty much gone out the window. Everyone else is rolling like it’s a free-for-all, so having such a strict set of rules for yourself isn’t doing anything but handicapping you.

    I’m all for letting the rolling system sort it out (and heck, I usually pass/give loot in response to polite requests anyway. But, really, today’s rolling rules are “if you want the item (as an item) hit need.”

    What you’re doing is sweet and noble, but (no offense) outdated and needlessly self-sacrificing. The group is better off with a tank that needs dps loot than it is sitting around with no tank at all. In other words, I’d rather roll against somebody else in an instance than come up with menial tasks to do while waiting for the queue to pop because there are no tanks to be found.

  4. I think you did it exactly right. Queue as DPS for DPS gear. This way you’re not increasing competition for one drop – assuming other DPS might queue for that weapon as DPS too.

    If you tank leaves, I think you could offer to tank with the proviso that you’ll be rolling need on that item should it drop.

    As long as most groups know in advance, I doubt they’ll have a problem with it.

  5. I take the lets see what happens as it comes. I pretty much always Que my Pally and Druid as Heals for LFD. When I was gearing their DPS off sets I would simply get to the boss, wait for the drop and ask the group if it was OK to roll on said Item for off-set.

    I find most of the time people are very accommodating, especially to a healer, and wouldn’t mind. On the rare occasion when someone would voice they prefer i not because then needed it for current spec my choice not to roll earned me kudos from the group. i was frequently told it was refreshing to see someone not ninja loot when they clearly wanted it.

    Out dated ideals? Maybe, but at the end of the day I felt better about my actions. And my own conscious is all I really need to appease in an anonymous online game.

  6. I face a similar problem with raids on my DK. His main spec is tank, and I’ve invested all my hard-earned frost emblems in tanking gear, and yet I invariably get asked to go to ICC as DPS, because most of the other tanks in our guild don’t have DPS specs (one, a paladin, has a healer spec). It doesn’t help that I’m usually top of the DPS charts too, so I’m then even more likely to be asked to DPS next time 😦

  7. Agree with Cassandri. I would never roll on DPS gear if I queued as tank, unless no DPS wanted it. Seeing as that axe is so sweet, odds are a DPS *will* want it. It might be outdated morals to only roll on your declared main spec for the dungeon, but I’m sticking to them. I get pretty angry when I see the item I was after dropping… and someone needing it ‘for offspec’.

    If, however, the tank dropped and I could do it, I would announce to the group that I am willing to tank, BUT I will still be needing on that axe. Which leaves the problem of the 1 DPS you still need to pug… but I’d just hope it’s a clothie 😛
    (if it happened to be someone who also needed the axe, I would pass, since for their part of the run I’d be the tank.)

  8. You waited your 20 minutes in the queue. Once the tank dropped, I think it is up to you to let the group know you dual spec – I do the same but heals/tank – and that you are there for that piece and plan to roll on it. Give them the option to let you requeue as a tank (as they also waited their 20 minutes in queue) and roll on dps gear. When the new dps arrives, explain, and they can drop or not as they wish. Either way, you are only rolling on it, not guaranteed to get it.

  9. I think you were right in what you did, because even if the 3 people in there were cool with you as tank rolling on dps gear, what if the new dps you picked up from LFD wasn’t?

    So… did the weapon drop for you? =)

    1. Well I can’t win for losing… I won it today and immediately got snarked at for rolling on a weapon with haste on it… despite it being the best I can get short of raiding…

  10. I’m with the people that are saying they’d queue in their main spec and mention either up front or at the boss when the gear actually drops “Hey, I’m a healer, but I’m after such n such DPS shiney, cause my main spec is actually DPS, mind if I roll?” I’ve done that before and most times I get a yes, but once I got a no, and that was fine…the person actually needed it for the spec they were in the instance for and I can’t argue that.

    I ask because like Jen said “I get pretty angry when I see the item I was after dropping… and someone needing it ‘for offspec’ ” Yes, I understand about duel-specs, but all I’m seeing is a healer rolling on the trinket that my DK has been running FoS bazillions of times for. If that healer had just said “Hey, my main spec is DPS, can I roll?” or “Can I roll for offset?”, that would have gone a long way to making me feel better about losing the roll.

    So queueing as DPS for PoS is noble and kind, but if you queue as a tank and just mention up front, “Hey, I’m after the beheader for offset, does anyone have an issue with that?”, that might work as well.

  11. I roll need, tell people it was for my off spec, and then if anyone else needs on it for a main spec I offer it to them. As a healer (sometimes) I have seen far too many pieces get DEed that I really wanted but was not allowed to roll on. If I have the option to ‘need’ something I need I take it. If someone wants it I almost always hand it over.

  12. I know a lot of people say “it doesn’t matter-it’s just a 5 man”, but that just doesn’t sit right with me. Admittedly I’m extra peeved when a dps rolls against a tank/healer because we all know that the gear requirements are a lot harder to reach for a healer and especially a tank than a dps.

    If I’m a tank, and I’ve gone through the trouble of gearing myself enough to tank heroics well – then I get really annoyed when some dps rolls on tank items I need. If I pass them, then feel free to take them.. but I find it incredibly unfair when I work so hard that someone who doesn’t take “my” stuff.

    I of course extend the same courtesy – if I’m the tank I don’t roll on dps items unless no one else needs them.

    I think you did the right thing. What I often do is I just tank everything to save myself the queue – then eventually I figure I will get a group where there’s only caster dps or no one who needs the dps pieces I need *lol* But that’s because I have no patience for waiting in a queue for 20 minutes 😛

    1. I will often turn sound on and afk for about 15 mins to fold laundry or whatnot… I am usually close enough to slap the enter button when it pops.

  13. If you have any need for an item, roll need for it. Even if you just want it for RP purposes. The only exception I can think of is when you are running within an all-guild group and you know that someone within the group needs the item to make them a better raider.

    This perhaps comes off as not nice, especially from a person who has no need for any heroic loot. But how much does niceness get you? Consider: the person you are rolling against is someone from another server. Chances are slim that you will ever so much as run into this person again, and infinitesimal that your WoW experience will be improved from them getting the drop instead of you. It is also not as if you are denying them a roll or anything; they have an even shot at it as well.

    If you need it, roll need on it. It’ll drop again soon enough for the other person.

    1. I will never agree with this mentality. In game or in real life. We live in a society or we play a game, we interact with people in both, and I hate the ‘every man for himself’ attitude. I treat people they way I would like to be treated, and in this case I would like to get first dibs on the loot appropriate to the spec I am currently in. I find needing for offspec, RP or whatever, *without* announcing it first, a very rude and dickish move and I try not to associate myself with that kind of players.

      1. I have to agree with Jen here. Based on your philosophy, I technically ‘need’ everything in the instance – because I’m trying to reach the gold cap and require the vendor money.

      2. Agree with Jen too. I’ve bumped into groups where people just roll need on everything they can whether they need it or not, and I’m talking ICC geared people now mostly, and they have been some of the worst groups I’ve been in because those people have been the most horrible people you could imagine grouping with. I don’t care if the tank is bad, or the DPS is low, but the moment a player starts looking down their nose at you and thinking you’re unimportant because you’re not on their server, or in their guild, they’re just the worst kind of people in this game in my honest opinion. Fair enough taking something for offspec BUT you ask whoever is playing that spec first if you aren’t, would you slap someone in the face in the street just because you didn’t know them and would probably never see them again so you just could?

  14. My Baby tank ( 35 now) keeps getting out rolled by Pally Dps – thems stealing my lootz.. and its so frustrating – one pally did it twice, in probably the only 2 items that are ‘upgrades’ in 15 runs – I guess I’ll get them eventually, but how else are they supposed to gear up?

  15. I roll the same way in Dungeons. I’ll continue to do so because I’d rather not participate in the behavioral race to the bottom that so predominate in pugs atm.

  16. I would queue as a tank, say when I get here “I’m here for the 2h axe, you guys don’t mind if I need on it?” If they mind, I’d leave and go again, if they don’t then cool. As long as nobody is against the idea, then it’s perfectly ethical to do that 🙂

  17. I’m of the same mindset as most here it seems. Announce your intentions at the start of the run, and then if someone objects or has an issue, they can either vote you out or you can work out some kind of arrangement. Losing on a tank trinket when you’ve actually queued and geared as a tank – frankly sucks. I think it’s worse when you have people who queue as a tank – but have no business doing it. Just for the shorter queue.

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