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Why should we mark?

Marking in an instance is vital to the success of any instance or raid. Marking identifies which mobs are to be cc'd by whom and which are to be killed and in what order. Basically, marking is a key component of communication needed while in battle. Without it, cc is not placed properly (or is broken when it is), the wrong mob gets attacked and aggro gets stolen from the tank. This all makes a fight much harder (at best) or (at worst) leads to a wipe.

Despite the importance of marking, it's not very difficult to do. You simply click on a mob and choose the appropriate marking. Ok, it's a bit more involved than that, but not much.

Who should mark -

Tanks typically mark most frequently since they're at the head of the crowd, so they can see the mobs easily and mark accordingly. But they're not the only choice. In fact, they're often not the best choice. Anyone in a group can mark - tanks, melee DPS, ranged DPS, even the healer! Whoever has the best knowledge of the instance and it's mobs would make a great puller.

Rogues and druids can stealth ahead into the next room and take a full look around to determine the best group to pull and to make sure they all get marked appropriately. Hunters can move far ahead of the group and mark and pull the mobs back to where the tank is waiting to take aggro.

In general, it's a good thing for everyone to know the basics of marking and to be able to do it in a pinch.

How to mark

The first thing you need to do when marking is to look over your party and see what kinds of crowd control you have. Once you determine that, assign a symbol to each player with cc. You can make the symbolsl mean whatever you want - you're in control! Traditionally, though, moon=sheep, square=freeze trap, star=sap. However you assign them, make sure you let every one know what each mark means. I've created a macro for when I mark so I don't have to type it each time.

''/p Kill order is {skull}{x}{Star}{Square}{Triangle}{Diamond}{Moon}

/p {moon}=sheep
/p {square}=trap
/p {star}=sap
/p {diamond}=banish/succubus
/p {triangle}=mc or hibernate
/p {Circle}=Pats

/p Do not attack circle.
/p This is a macro, so ignore any cc assignments we don't have, but still follow the kill order.''

It works pretty well, but there'll always be exceptions - you'll have two mages or hunters or whatever and need to adjust, but again, by telling everyone who has what (i.e. square is Hunter Joe's trap, triangle is Hunter Jane's trap) should avoid confustion.

Anytime you get a new member, review ALL markings, not just theirs (this is why I have a macro).

OK, so now you've decided which markings go for which members and listed the kill order. Now it's time to actually mark.

To mark well, you need to know the strengths and weaknesses of the different forms of CC you have at your disposal. How reliable is it? Can it be renewed? Can it be used from range? How long does it last? What can it be used on?

Review the mobs you're about to pull. Are there any casters? Any healers? Any cc-immune mobs?

Each instance and group will be unique, but here's a few general rules that won't steer you wrong very often.

Assign casters to ranged cc (sheep or MC).

Healers should be either your first killed (skull) or given to your most reliable CC.

Hunters HATE trapping casters because casters don't close to melee range (and their trap). Give them melee mobs whenever possible. If it's not possible, though, hunters should be expected to trap casters if needed. They may complain, but they can do it.

Sap can only happen BEFORE COMBAT STARTS. If you assign a sap, ensure you give them time to get there and do it before the pull. Also, keep in mind that Sap relies on stealth which may not be available at all times.

Finally, know who your go-to CC is. This will take time to figure out in a PUG, but if you're running with folks you know, you'll learn who excels in CC and who doesn't. Give the tough assignments to those you KNOW will get the job done.

Marking is a simple, but vital job that takes some practice to really get down. Don't worry if you make a mistake and tell the mage to sheep a demon - they'll tell you they can't quick enough. They're trying to get it right, same as you.

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This page last modified 2008-06-30 12:11:30.