I am not complaining about the game nor trying to create any form of negative projections for it's future, just some thoughts on the tanking potential of different classes without cookie cutting
While I'm all for having options, I'm so far a bit perplexed on the way tanking works in beta. I have seen gladiators, pugilists,marauders, lancers, and even a thaumaturge tanking.
The pugilist I can see as being a good evasion tank for things like xp groups or small scale missions/quests, maybe even a marauder, but a Mage? With all the different applications of the new skill mix/match system, it seems almost anything that can keep threat and self-heal can be main tank. The armor is all interchangeable thus far, so def rating goes out the window. I have been putting 2/3 of my stats into vit, since my end game goal and goal throughout the game was to be a tank (for testing purposes, I know my character will be wiped during the next phase). There are some things that I'm hoping do not repeat themselves in FFXIV.
Self Heals The reason warrior and monk were not allowed to fill their situational tank roles in FFXI is because everyone wanted a paladin. Aside from flash which generated amazing threat, the fact that paladin could self heal became the norm for tanking. If you don't have heals, we don't want you. I won't even go in to blink tanking as that was another fluke that destroyed tanking opportunities for classes other than paladin and ninja. True I'm sure most of us have tanked on our monks, warriors, or samurais (which had emnity gear), but LFG as a main spec tank? No, sorry.
Never did I expect that a monk would tank endgame (not talking about merited monks later tanking land gods, etc. that was a long time after the fact), but I wish they were given more respect as tanks, along with Samurai and Warrior. This is most likely due to the "I runz out of mps too fast and I have to rest for 5 minutes to get it back" problem. So what does SE do this time around? Take MP regen away completely along with living us with tiny pools to begin with again. Now I'm sure SE has plans for this down the road, so this is not another gripe thread. I'm over it, they'll do what they do until either we or they realize it's a good or bad thing.
Other games (not just wow) allow for straight sword & board tanking without the necessity for self preserving magic and it leads not only to having more tanking classes available, but also creates different paths for people who love tanking to take. Tanking as a self-healing paladin vs a vit monster warrior with a bit of a damaging edge adds variety to the game. Not everyone wants to tank the same way. Ninjutsu is magic, you have to cast it just like cure and although they are used differently, they achieve the same thing; less stress on the healer.
Basically my hope is that somewhere down the line in this game, tanks will emerge and not just be a cookie cutter level 50 Glad/Conj/Mar/Tham combo. I guess the only way to achieve this would be to include non magical tanking abilities that rival the use of magic or buff up healers to be able to handle the load. As someone who wants to tank like a real gladiator would, I'm gunning for this possibility.
*btw I'm positive the current DoM won't be tanking end game or other serious endeavors. I am not putting them down for doing so, do whatever works. I was just surprised at how the game is currently functioning in that respect.
Edited, Aug 22nd 2010 10:08pm by GuardianFaith