As if the Southern Graveyard wasn't enticing enough for all the scrubs out there who have no clue how to play Strand of the Ancients, Blizzard has made a tiny change in Patch 3.1 that will make the Battleground hell for players who actually know what they're doing. According to the patch notes:
"Capturing the Southern Graveyard will now automatically capture both the East and West Graveyards."
Great. Give all those scrubs an excuse to capture it while on offense. Thanks, Blizzard.
Let me explain why capturing Southern Graveyard is one of the worst things you can do for your team while on offense. You see, when you capture Southern Graveyard and your team is progressing Southwards through the Gate of the Yellow Moon and the Keep, members of your team who die during the effort will rezz near the yellow gate. Where are the tanks and charges that you need? That's right. They're downhill to the Northeast and Northwest. This means that your team will need to run down just to get a tank. In a timed Battleground, time spent running down just to get a tank is time wasted.
It's important to capture the Eastern and Western Graveyards because doing so unlocks the Sparklight and Rigspark Workshops respectively. This means you will spawn right where you pick up Demolishers. But if you capture Southern Graveyard, you will spawn farther away from tanks and the nearest bombs are behind the yellow gate. The latest Battleground change is completely baffling and I'm not certain why Blizzard is implementing it. At best, it will encourage defenders to protect Southern Graveyard -- another scrub thing to do.
The one and only time when capturing Southern Graveyard is a strategically sound move is when the keep has been breached or needs only one blast from a Massive Seaforium Charge. At that point, Eastern and Western Graveyards should already have been captured and are largely irrelevant to the final rush. Blizzard should at least place seaforium charges at the Southern Graveyard rezz point to raise its strategic value. Otherwise, it is a trap for the offense and capturing it is guaranteed to slow down your team. That is the flaw of the Strand of the Ancients map, and the Patch 3.1 change is only going to aggravate it.