I realize nobody wants to read about WoW, but historically I haven’t played it much, and about 90% of it is still new to me. Well "new" isn’t the right word exactly–it’s more that WoW’s implementation of familiar MMO tropes is new to me. For example, I’ve made a shocking observation in my low to mid-range dungeon runs: The tank almost always does the most damage in the group. Sometimes by a very large margin.
It’s a bit of a mind-blower when I’m going in with what I think is a pure damage spec, only to get out-damaged by the tank! In every other game I’ve played, the tank has almost no damage output, and is usually second-to-last before the healer.
At first I thought that low to mid-range dungeon runs in WoW are so easy that people simply use a damage spec instead of a tank spec to get through the dungeon faster, relying on their damage to keep aggro. Because it can’t possibly be that the WoW tank specs deal massive damage and withstand massive damage, can it?
It seems so. As further evidence, when I play an Arms Warrior, my damage is usually pretty high among the group without any special effort. But when I play a Warlock or a Mage, my damage is usually last place among the damage dealers. I haven’t had the nerve yet to try playing a Protection Warrior to confirm the super high damage. (Not that I think it would be hard; I just don’t want to get yelled at for going the wrong way.)
Perhaps this is just an artifact of the leveling process, and everything will balance out at the level cap. That is, perhaps Warriors do better damage while leveling, but at the cap the Mages and Warlocks catch up. I hope so, because right now it doesn’t look like there’s any reason to roll anything but a warrior for damage.