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The Colosseum: Comotu of Executus

The Colosseum takes us inside the world of the Gladiator (Brutal, Vengeful, Merciless, Furious, 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. We're especially focused on the people who play these games, to further shed light on the world of the PvP player.

Comotu is the Paladin in the 5v5 team "ROFL My Copter," the 3v3 team "RMP," and the 2v2 team "COMOFOLD." While developing his skills since Season 2, Comotu has had the opportunity to work with several players. Even more importantly, he's preparing himself and his team to excel in future seasons.

Comotu spent some time with The Colosseum, talking about how he came about playing a Paladin, how his teams got together, and what kind of dynamics he experiences in current matches. Check out what he had to say behind the cut.


WoW Insider: Which class do you play? What made you choose to play that class?


Comotu: I currently play a Dwarf Paladin. There's actually a funny story to why I play the class.

I started my World of Warcraft adventures as a cunning Gnome Warrior. However, during the summer, I decided to let my glorious level 58 character rest while I took some classes. But there was little to do during that summer. Luckily, my father had joined me in the adventure of beginning to play World of Warcraft as a Dwarf Paladin! Seeing as I had the extra time and access to my father's account, I figured I'd use it.

I began to like the class very much. It was like a Warrior on steroids (since I was never starved for rage). Eventually the character evolved into something much more complex than what my father enjoyed. (He preferred a simple, low-level character for questing.) And I guess you could say I "inherited" the account.

To this day, I still play my beloved paladin and on occasions bring out my Mage or my girlfriend's Moonkin. I could go on about what has kept me playing the paladin through thick (Season 4 and Season 5) and thin (Season 2 and Season 3) but I will leave that for a later occasion since I've already answered the question at hand.

WoW Insider: Wow -- that's one hell of a story. Who's your partner(s) for the Arena? How did you get hooked up together?

Comotu: I currently play in 2v2 with a Death Knight named Eisengrahf.

At the end of Burning Crusade, with the release of Sunwell, I became tired of raiding and decided to focus a bit more on PvP. Thank god I did, because if I hadn't gotten those Alterac Valley achievements during Burning Crusade, I wouldn't have gotten the Battlemaster title which I proudly wear today.

Come WotLK, I found myself with no raiding guild. This presented a great challenge PvP-wise, since in the next season, everyone would be rocking full Tier 7 PvE gear, and I would be in blues since there was still no good PvP gear available.

With this in mind, I decided to join a small but strong guild named "Destruction." I felt at home there since there were a lot of foreign players such as myself. While in this guild, I met Eisengrahf. Come Season 5, though, I already had a Warrior as a partner.

Eisengrahf had talked to me previously about playing as a team since he was paired with a Mage (which sucked for him) and I was paired with a warrior (which wasn't exactly the best either). However I was as faithful to my partner as my partner was to me. We made it through Season 5.

In Season 6, still with my warrior partner, I decided to invite a "2400+" experienced Death Knight to the team to experiment. When I came to realize he was utter garbage carried by god-knows-who last season, my warrior partner got jealous and dropped the team. Needless to say, I stopped playing with the "2400+" Death Knight and found myself alone and in the cold world of PUGs.

Luckily, Eisengrahf was having trouble with his druid partner and they both wanted to move on. Once I whispered Eisen about being on my team, then and there he dropped his twos and switched over to mine. Shortly afterwards, we starting moving into the 3s bracket, and now we want to work on a 5s team. To this day we still play together.

As for my 3s and 5s team, our third for 3s is nothing less than . . .you guessed it, a Warrior. His name is Finalhero. I got to know him during my "partner elimination process" in Season 5. He didn't like temporarily sharing the team with the other warrior (mind you, it was me and two warriors frequently playing the team) while I chose who I wanted to stay with. So he left the team when he found a stable partner. He had a friend who also played a warrior but was less geared and less experienced.

Eventually, the person we like to call "the real Finalhero" stopped using said character and now "Finalhero's friend" is the owner of his account. So, technically I no longer play with "the real Finalhero" anymore but rather with "Finalhero's friend."

As for my current 5s team, I met a rather bright fellow who played a Moonkin named Beffyjunk during my journey for Battlemaster. We both raced for this achievement during Burning Crusade (needless to say, I won the race) and got to know each other since we intentionally and unintentionally played an inordinate amount of battlegrounds together.

Beffyjunk never ceased in his quest to be successful in the Arenas and eventually started talking to all the "undiscovered" PvP players on the server to form up a 5s team. We are currently the second highest on our server, if I am not mistaken, and Beffyjunk most definitely has a better place in 5s than in 3s or 2s.

WoW Insider: What are your strategies like? What do you do when the gates open?

Comotu: As far as strategies go, we all know there are an infinite amount of strategies as every strategy must be based on opportunity. I'll try and be as general as possible, since we apply the same idea to all our brackets.

As soon as the gates open, we always follow the standard procedure. Identify number of enemies (I've seen 3 players on the other side while in 2v2, and occasionally get lucky seeing less than what there should be), then identify enemy classes, and then identify enemy SPECS!!

Picking out the enemy specs is critical. We have lost matches when we see, for example, a Priest and Rogue and assume the priest is Discipline, since 95% of the time they are. And then, to our surprise, he is Shadow and we get caught off guard in a burst.

Once we have gathered the information, we need to devise a plan. It is usually centered on picking a weak target to force cooldowns to be used. Once these cooldowns (which would have made killing a target near impossible) are used up, we switch target or apply more pressure to the current target in search of a kill.

Rinse (wait for cooldowns) and repeat. That pretty much covers offense. Defense, on the other hand, is a whole different story and one which is rarely discussed. Defensive play varies widely due to this lack of discussion. Since offensive play (as stated) is discussed more, there are a lot more common ground there.

This is what works for me. When I am being hit, the instant I begin to get hit . . . I ask for my partner(s) to keep Target X off me. As a Paladin, as long as I am getting pounded, heals will be minimized. It's divided into 2 situations:

1. The target is peeled and I am free to play as I wish: I do my best to support my team by easing their way to the kill, or putting pressure on the target, as I keep them alive. (I do play Holy, if I failed to mention this earlier.)

2. The target comes back for more. We try to peel again. If multiple failures occur, I do my best to stay alive while my team can assist me, either by getting a kill or having cooldowns become available.

Again, none of my teams ever use a set strategy, the Arena simply contains too many variables to attack with a single formula. This approach (which is to say, a single formula) can be used, however it will not be as successful as a "multiple variable formula." Through the use off AddOns and perhaps the most key element to team-play, COMMUNICATION, we keep track of what the other team is doing and react accordingly.

WoW Insider: Which are your deadliest opponents right now? First, are there names in particular you dread seeing? What about classes?

Comotu: At the moment, Ret Pally / Rogue and PMR are the comps I'd say I dislike seeing the most. Since the beginning of Season 2, I've played as Holy, even when the Repentance build was about 50% of Paladin players' builds.

When the Prot/Holy build became popular, I thought it would just be another passing fad. However, I decided to try it. As soon as I did, we hit 2200 for the first time with it. Ret/Pally/Rogue is a lot of fast DPS though, and Prot/Holy is more about the long fight. So I've had trouble adjusting.

PMR on the other hand has always been the dominating 3s comp, so besides the good build, a lot of these higher rated PMR teams have a lot of experience. That's another thing that makes it dangerous, since I've only been Cleaving for about 2 weeks.

We decided to name our 3s team "PMR," it's an ironic name in a sense. It seems DK/Holy/War is the new PMR (although not quite as powerful, as demonstrated by SK vs. TSG). DK/Holy/War is finally "dethroning" what seemed to be the lifelong kind of top 3v3 compositions.

As far as names I fear seeing, I'd say Sargaz and Broseph, just because in my journey of learning in arenas, they were the top dogs the first couple of seasons I played. Those names have stayed in the back of my head. Both of them are good at what they do, and will have it no other way. My utmost respects to them.


The Colosseum is an interview series by WoW Insider, meant to reveal strategies, compositions, and tactics from the Arena fighters who use them. For more PvP information, be sure to hit up Blood Sport and the Art of War(craft).

Filed under: The Colosseum, Analysis / Opinion

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