Subtypes and Related Tropes:
- The Big Guy
- Evasion Tank (aka "Blink Tank")
- Magic Tank (aka "Arcanic Tank")
- Meat Shield
- Mighty Glacier
- Party Leader
- Tough Tank (aka "Blood Tank")
- Scrapper DPS
Game and Story Use
- If your game has squishy wizards, glass cannons, or some other mechanical base that makes non-combat characters (or social-focused characters and mental-focused characters) very vulnerable, your adventuring party may need one of these.
- When a fight breaks out, your job is to draw enemy fire, or keep the enemy from getting near your allies.
Building This Character
- Physical Attributes are the most important for this character concept. You need Armor and Hit Points, and probably a decent Movement Rate.
- If the game has strong Social Mechanics you find Social Attributes useful.
- Melee, Parry, and Dodge are at the top of your list.
- Athletics, Acrobatics and Jumping may be good for maneuvering around the battlefield and responding to the tactical situation.
- If the game has strong Social Mechanics, you may find Intimidate or Taunt useful for provoking attacks, restricting enemy movements, etc.
- Powers that restrict enemy movement around the battlefield, punish them for ignoring, draw attacks off your friends, etc, are perfect for The Tank. Games that already have aggressive "opportunity attack" systems, or very strict targeting rules may do this effectively for you, in which case you can ignore it. See also Instant Death Radius.
- Anything that makes you harder to kill effectively makes your whole party harder to kill. Boost up your defense!
- Things that boost your initiative or awareness can help you cut off foes in the case of an ambush or sudden shift in the tactical situation. This is a higher priority is systems that change initiative order every combat round.
- Don't forget your armor and shield, if they're the least bit in-genre.
- For your backup weapons, consider a thrown weapon that can be carried in multiples, like daggers, axes, or javelins. That way, if a foe gets past you and you can't catch up, you can take a small penalty to Quick Draw such a weapon and hurl it at them. With any luck, that'll distract them from your wimpy buddies.
- A weapon that extends your reach is useful for blocking or punishing enemies, and items that increase your movement allow you to get where you need to be.
- Listed above, some tanks might rely more on not getting hit than on surviving hits.
- Listed above, depending on your magic system, some tanks might be more oriented toward soaking spells than soaking hits.
- Depending on your social mechanics, a tank might be able to taunt enemies into striking rather than having to block movement or punish.
- The Tank can overlap with other roles. A Petmaster/Tank might use summon magic to screen enemies, a Trapper/Tank can block movement, a Sniper might soak "hits against stealth" (in the kind of game that handles that kind of abstraction) to keep enemies from acting against allies, or a Mezzer/Tank has ways to lock down an opponent other than taking hits.
page revision: 6, last edited: 14 Sep 2015 05:20