Mar 16th 2010 12:32PM I think the major flaw with your article is the argument that Player vs. player should not be just that -- not player vs. environment. This is what we call a false dichotomy. Just because there are obstalces in the arenas that players are supposed to use to their advantage/disadvantage it does not follow that Blizzard is diluting the PvP into PvE.
Think of other FPS games: Halo, CoD, Counterstrike, etc. All of these games are Player v. Player games; yet they are filled with environments that can make or break a game if a team uses them to their advantage. I doubt anyone would argue that PvP aspects of these games are being diluted because of structural advantages and weakpoints. That is just the nature of the game; and you have to take these structures into consideration when you are planning an attack or defense. The same experience goes for arena play.
Now, the rest of the article makes sense: there are certain aspects of this map that do lead an unfavorable advantage to some classes over others; but you can't move from these specific problems to the overgeneralization that environmental factors dilute the PvP experience into a PvE experience. That's a false dichotomy and an overgeneralization.
Nov 14th 2009 11:37AM I really love all the insanely complex solutions that everyone keeps proposing to the arena problem.
Here are my two cents.
With regards to balance we have two major problems: one is a numbers game (damage done/damage resisted/damage healed); the other is a "tactical game" (for lack of a better term this game involves the actual functions of certain spells/abilities: ie. Blink, Shadowstep, Frost Nova, etc.). If you ask me the numbers game is an easy fix (well easy as long as it is possible to program it: I am no programmer): all you have to do is change the coeffecients for damage/resistances/healing for PvP. This way we could also possibly do away with resilience as a stat.
Now as for the tactical game, the problem is a little tricker but so far Blizzard has been able to figure it out in some cases. Make slight modifications to the ways certain spells affect their targets: ie. CC only lasts 12 seconds on the first cast and is subject to 3 second diminishing returns until it is resisted (I think those numbers are right, my memory might be off). Granted I think this is still a tricky problem and will involve a lot of creative problem solving on the dev. team's part.
The last problem is why people do arenas. Like it or not there is a substantial player base that really does enjoy PvP. I in fact bought this game because of the PvP element that was missing in other MMO's upon WoW's release. As it stands if someone wants to PvP and hold a competitive chance in BG's and in world PvP against his opponents then he needs to have the top gear to get that edge and the only way to get that gear is for him to compete in arenas. Now this problem ties into the other one because people are in a sense forced to play arenas and the highly competitive nature of the arenas which the big rewards drive forces the devs to make sure they are balanced to a tee or else people will get upset over losing an unfair match -- think of having really corrupt referees in the Superbowl.
Now the way to fix this last problem is simple: remove the big rewards for arenas so people will not be forced to play arenas in order be competitive in world PvP and BG's. But the devs can't do this without offending or hurting a portion of their player base; so thus all of these other problems turn on a PR or customer service problem. In order to fix this problem it is simple: Blizzard just has to be men about this and accept they might upset the minority of hardcore arena goers by taking away their large gear reward. Now this doesn't mean that those players get nothing; but Blizzard just needs to change the incentive for competiting in arenas altogether. Once Blizzard can change the incentive for arena competition then they can begin to fix the balancing issues. If arena play is not the focal point and end-all-be-all of WoW PvP, then and only then can blizzard relax the magnifying glass on small scale PvP balance -- which as we have determined is the crutch of overall game balance.
Nov 14th 2009 10:37AM "Competition spoils the spirit of every sport."
I know this isn't very WoW related; but I couldn't resist to correct this statement.
The very phenomenon of a "sport" is more often than not structered around the phenomenon of competition. While in our language the concept of sport has many different uses -- the more prominent use of the word typically involves the notion of competition. Think of ESPN's "SPORTScenter"; or think of when someone says, "I am going to a sporting event" this weekend; usually in these uses we are referring to events where one or more forces are in contest with one another -- and the notion of contest necessarily involves the notion of a victor and a loser. Now, we may use the word sport in other circumstances very similar to the meaning of game which may or may not involve competion between two or more foces. In this sense the meaning of sport or game is used to contrast events or activities that are of a more serious nature -- thinking of a game or sport as something that is done for pure fun as opposed to pure work.
So, I would argue that it is almost a complete contradiction in terms if you say that competition ruins the nature of sports when more than 90% of the time we use the term sport to talk about events that necessarily involve competition: ie. baseball, soccer, racing, poker, and yes... even video games.
Nov 3rd 2009 10:56AM Oooops double post. Didn't think the first one went through.
Nov 3rd 2009 10:51AM To: ICAN'TBELIEVE
I meant my comment as a sarcastic joke. I would never have spent six years and much tuition obtaining my degrees if I really felt they would be useless. I would never trade my the knowledge I gained as a philosophy student for anything.
While the critical thinking skills, analytical skills, writing skills, and general appreciation for life that my philosophy degrees gave me are very important to me; the sad reality is that in today's economy it is true that philosophy degrees are not quite as marketable as Engineering, CS, Business, or even hard science degrees. In fact, that is the problem that many liberal arts students are facing nowadays: if you do not hold a Ph.D and do NOT plan to teach then you will be facing fierce competition finding good paying jobs in the corporate world. I am not saying that they are useless degrees; they just don't open as many doors as easily as other degrees do -- and that is the point of my joke. Oh and not to mention the fact that 9/10 times when people find out you have a philosophy degree they say, "Oh.... and what are you going to do with that..." with disapointing yet smug looks on their faces.
Nov 3rd 2009 10:40AM To ICAN'TBELIEVE:
My comment was actually meant as a sarcastic joke. Of course I think my degreees were worth it or else I wouldn't have spent six years and much tuition to get them all. But one thing is true: in today's economy the reality is that philosophy degrees are not quite as marketable as CS, Engineering, Business, etc.
Sure I think my critical thinking, analytical skills, and the general appreciation of life that I gained from philosophy are great things and I wouldn't trade them for the world; the sad reality is that it is REALLY hard to land a good high paying job with my degrees. I would never SERIOUSLY say that any degree is completely useless; but the sad reality is that some are much more marketable than others.
Nov 3rd 2009 9:57AM To Hal:
LMFAO dude you are entirely correct on the women issue.
Nov 3rd 2009 9:32AM Damn I was really hoping for an "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" WoW skit. Booooo!!!
Nov 3rd 2009 9:21AM I was just in Barnes and Noble yesterday and saw a bunch of these "... and Philosophy" books. I was saying to my girlfriend, "God I freaking hate these books. They try to analyze these pop culture fads too closely and find inklings of certain philosophical theories that hardly pertain to the fads at all. In turn all they are doing is butchering the hell out of the theories and extracting certain certain thoughts and theories that hardly are apparent in the fads at all." Not only did I see one book dedicated to my favorite band: radiohead... now WoW has one.... nice.
So let me guess, the Horde represent Nietzschean "Will to Power" and somewhere in there I am sure will be a nod to Sartre (whom I abhor) that along with the Nietzschean analysis also misses the point.
And as someone with two philosophy degrees: B.A. and M.A. it is true: they only serve to make light dinner conversation and pick up chicks that have a thing for "nerdy guys".
Oct 16th 2009 1:07PM I actually work at a bank and I do know first hand that we do check for ALL of those sources of unusual activity as the other poster mentioned. And on top of that my account along with a friend's of mine got hacked a few weeks back and her CS professor told her that her online banking is safe because their encryption (or whatever it is... I was a philosophy student not a CS major) is much stronger or whatever.