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The Colosseum: Caylie the Priest

The Colosseum takes us inside the world of the Gladiator (Brutal, Vengeful, Merciless, and otherwise), to interview some of the top Arena fighters in the battlegroups. Our goal is to bring a better understanding of the strategy, makeup, and work that goes into dueling it out for fame, fortune, and Netherdrakes.

Caylie is the Priest in a Priest/Warlock or Priest/Rogue team, "Esport Ballers." Currently sitting at 12th place for their battlegroup, the team has traditionally done well in previous seasons.

The player prefers to go by Cayley, due to his character names back in previous seasons. Despite having other options, he says he prefers the Warlock/Priest team for the sake of a challenge.

Check out what else Caylie had to say behind the cut.

WoW Insider: I guess my first question might be obvious. Which class do you play?

Cayley: Priest, but sometimes a Paladin.

Wow Insider: What role do you play as a Priest? What made you choose this class?

Cayley: The name of my character is Caylie, but I'm more known under Cayley from when I played on Tichondrius during Season 2 and Season 3. I transferred off that server sometime around then.

As a priest, I always play Discipline because I could never stand Shadow for more than 5 minutes. (Unless, of course, I'm just messing around.)

It was actually a spur of the moment decision to play a priest. I played a rogue when Burning Crusades came out, and we just couldn't find a decent priest for any bracket. (We were mainly looking for someone in 5v5.)

It was originally a joke, me making the priest and getting a few levels on it. But, I then started to have a little fun. Next thing I knew, I was level 70 and wanted to play the character.

Whenever I'm playing the Arena, I prefer to play with the Warlock Kigz. We usually play underpowered compositions, due to the fact that they are probably more fun. We've played Priest/Warlock now for every season and we've made Gladiator every time. (But, we've not gotten much higher than that due to the obvious reasons.)

WoW Insider: What's the experience like, as a pair of casters in the Arena? How do you make it work against the melee classes?

Cayley: Me and Kigz have been playing Priest/Warlock for every season since Season 1. The whole composition revolves around what I think of as exploiting the other team's weaknesses and mistakes.

Most of the time, I feel like the other team underestimates us, or we win the match due to a fluke. Although our composition does suck, it's really easy to lose to us if you're not careful. In Season 5, we played up to 3rd place on our Battlegroup somehow, beating out a lot of the Death Knight/Paladin teams. The DK/Paladin fights are very hard to win if the DK is good.

The DK can single-handedly put out enough pressure to both the Warlock and his pet that I can't drink at all. These fights are usually long, around 10 minutes or more, and last until we eventually get a kill on the Paladin.

However, that was with the old Divine Hymn stun, and winning that way is no longer easy. The hardest team to beat used to be anything with a Rogue but I can't say for certain what it will be in Season 6.

WoW Insider: Rogues can easily plague any caster that's not a Mage. How do you counter Rogues?

Cayley: Hmm, it's not really "countering" a Rogue, I'd say. It's more like dragging the fight out until he does something stupid enough where we kill him.

In fights suck as Rogue/Druid, the match could literally go on for maybe 30+ minutes because the whole fight would consist of me heal-drinking while my Warlock tanks.

However, the true weakness of Priest/Warlock is when our opponents attack the priest first. It's more dangerous to leave the Warlock open, but it could be a faster win for them if they have a Rogue, Death Knight, or Warrior. Death Knights may be the dumbest when they train on the priest, because of Anti-Magic Shield and Lichborne. These powers greatly counter a Warlock, especially when the DK misses his mindfreeze.

Basically, any team with a Rogue will always come out on top unless they mess up somewhere huge. For example, if they have problems with over-extension or Line of Sight.

The type of game play which was involved with heal-drinking is practically gone now, considering the nerf to spirit. That was an important part of this composition. In fact, the whole game now is to just to kill someone in 20 seconds.

WoW Insider: A lot has been made of Retribution Paladin's burst damage, and how it plays into the fast-kill dynamic you're talking about. What's your opinion on the state of Retribution Paladins right now?

Cayley: Ret paladins and every melee class are too easy to play.

Now that I think more about it, if you were to nerf Ret Paladins it would be pointless. If you nerfed their damage output, the PvE community would be in an uproar. It would cause them to buff something else to possibly make them better than they are currently, or make them wose. That would add more crying to the Paladin community, claiming to be underpowered.

WoW Insider: How do you rate the different melee classes? Admittedly, you're in a little bit of a unique position in terms of caster classes. While many talk about "gap closers," Priests don't have a "gap creater."

Cayeley: Interesting question, actually. That's something I have a strong opinion about when it comes to having mobility on a priest.

The thing about Priests is that they can't move when they have a snare on them. Every melee class has a reliable snare on a Priest, which will keep the priest in grasp for quite some time.

I like the concept of having to sit here and tank the damage. Of course, it can be quite frustrating because of the fact that I have to stand there, but I think it WAS a good thing. The best part about having to tank a melee was the fact that I could have my Warlock peel me while I ran away behind a pole to drink. By the time the melee got back to me, the mana I lost tanking him was regained. This was a huge advantage that spirit brought to the table and now it's no longer available.

If I had to fear one melee the most it would be warrior. Just because our composition has two classes that only has Fears as their peels, it's pretty difficult to kite Warriors effectively.

WoW Insider: Do you think this is going to be the season Warrior/Druid teams make their big comeback? Ghostcrawler has already alluded to the return of Warriors as a force in the Arena.

Cayley: I think pretty low of Ghostcrawler, but Warriors are definitely making a comeback. There have been warriors that have struggled in killing me and then I've seen others that put out so much damage that it's just dumb.

I think if a player can play a Warrior to its optimum level, the class is very strong. The Warrior and Druid teams should be making a comeback seeing that it's impossible to kill a druid now. He only has to sit in tree form and spam heals on himself.

However I'd think it would be pretty boring because I'd much rather see cyclones/roots being thrown around.

WoW Insider: Okay, what about Enhancement Shamans, Boomkins, or Shadow Priests. Do you see those guys in the Arena on your battlegroup at all? Why not, do you think?

Cayley: Enhancement Shamans, Boomkins, and Shadow priests are all very under-represented. I don't think there's much Blizzard can do at this point to balance out everything without them messing something up in PvE or some other aspect of PvP.

However, I think it's pointless to try and buff a class like Enhancement Shaman because it's just about as easy as a Ret Paladin. No one plays them anyway.

WoW Insider: So, do you usually come out swinging, or stay kind of defensive until you know what you're fighting?

Cayley: Usually, what ends up happening, is that I end up playing like it's WoTLK and try to kill someone in the start of the match. I'll help DPS and get my dispels off, but as the fight goes on, I'll drink a lot. If I see the fight going nowhere I'll try to get enough mana back to put us ahead by doing more DPS and playing very offensive.

WoW Insider: Are there changes that you're hopeful to see in the Arena?

Cayley: Yeah, there are a few changes I'd like to see, but I doubt they would ever take them into any consideration. If anything, I'd probably want them to remove the Death Knight class. But that won't happen so the least they can do is make their pet not be as good as it is. Compared to a Hunter and Warlock pet, the DK pet is pretty ridiculous as to how many they can have per match.

I also saw Kigz get Frost Striked the other day for 7.5k and he's wearing near 1050 resilience. That is pretty stupid. RNG is pretty stupid too, but what can you do about it.

WoW Insider: Do you (or your partner) use any PvE gear in your kits? Do you use PvE to supplement your PvP, or is it totally separate?

Cayley: I wish I could stand PvE for a minute. It's probably the most boring part of this game after you fight the boss one time. Neither of us use PvE gear. However, we used to be part of the raiding guild "PvE is Hard" on Tichondrius. That and before BC were the only times I ever even had fun raiding. So, we don't really do it anymore.

WoW Insider: What would you recommend for a new Arena player?

Cayley: To all new players, I'd suggest they pick a DK and post on the WoW forums to cry about your PvP misfortunes. Also click every button and keyboard turn.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Colosseum

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