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In TERA tanks also have other duties, like giving others useful buffs and debuffing enemies so other can deal more damage. Tank is also capable of bursting out damage when needed, but not as effectively as the true damage dealer classes. Accordingly devs high-damage tanking class Brawler should do around 70% of the damage dps classes do.
TERA has two specialized tanking classes lancer and brawler. However warrior (from level 52) and berserker (with level 65 quest) have tanking skills and can queue on the Instance Matching system as such role.
With TERA's advanced combat system attacks can be blocked with defensive skills. Blocking can be done only for attacks from front. Lancer achieves this with special skill Stand Fast. Lancer also needs resolve to keep their block up.
Brawler is theoretically more complicated but in reality not. Brawler has special skill Roundhouse Kick, after which next attack skill will block damage. Furthermore after raising their Rage to 100% (which can be done with skill Mounting Rage) brawler can activate Growing Fury. During the time brawler can keep the rage up and skill active every attack skill blocks.
Two hybrid classes warrior and berserker use special mode for tanking. Warrior needs to switch to Defensive Stance to block attacks with Cross Parry. Like lancer warrior needs resolve to keep their block up. Berserker can always use Axe Block, but needs Intimidation active to draw extra aggro from monsters and to use debuff and aggro skills.
It should be also noted that some classes can also block damage while attacking with some skills. Brawler always blocks damage with Ground Pounder, warrior with Torrent of Blows and Apex skill Blade Waltz, and lancer with Wallop and Onslaught.
Keeping boss attentionEdit
In TERA, monsters generally attack character who has the most aggro. Character with highest aggro has red ring under their feet. Aggro is generated with attacks and other skills (even with healing skills). Specialized tank classes have a special line with their weapons that gives extra aggro when attacking.
Some skills draw high aggro when needed. See skill tooltips.
If tanking for better geared players it's recommended to use Threatening crystal. Fine Threatening Niveot provides 62% more aggro from attacks.
If tank loses aggro all classes have some kind of shout to gain it back for few seconds.
Buffs and debuffsEdit
Much utility of lancer comes from many buffs class can give to others in party. Strongest buff is Adrenaline Rush that gives straight damage and attack speed buff. Skill should be used with other buffs active while boss is enraged to gain maximum damage burst benefit. Other lancer damage buff is Guardian Shout which is longer but has weaker effect.
Warrior attack speed buff from Traverse Cut affects all party while in defensive stance and gives them similar attack speed buff.
All tanking classes have skill to debuff enemies. All classes have similar -12% endurance debuff. Lancer can do this with skill Debilitate, brawler with Jackhammer, warrior with Combative Strike and berserker with Punishing Strike. Note that with some classes debuff is smaller and stacks after several hits.
Enrage is special kind of buff that affects boss monsters. While monster is enraged weapons' enrage lines and Focused crystals activate. This nearly doubles the party damage output. Enrage should be generally cast at the start of boss fight along with every other buff available. Bosses usually naturally enrage at certain percentages of their health for fixed period of time. The faster boss is killed the longer time he spends enraged compared to fight duration.
Certain attacks cannot be blocked. This generally includes some area attacks (red rings), but it also happens ie. on Ruinous Manor seconds boss. For those situations all classes have iframe skills (invulnerability frame from fighting games) to dodge such attacks.
Iframes are Backstep on lancer, Quick Dash on brawler, roll and Evasive Smash on berserker. Warrior has plenty of iframes. Evasive Roll eats resolve, so using Death From Above might be better to stay in position and save RE.
Lancer, after unlocking Apex skills has extra utility for special attacks. Lancer shield can absorb one attack and class has skill to give invulnerability to whole party for few seconds.
There might be some un-iframable attacks too. It's generally recommended to read dungeon guide before entering such places. Also some bosses get more aggressive over failures to do mechanics in dungeon and their attacks may exceed what tank can block. In such cases you have screwed up and it's better to reset boss and try again.
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