Mar 31st 2011 3:59PM Disagree slightly about the advantage being with the defender. I think the map was designed to be a slight advantage to the defender because of their mobility, and in practice after implemented that proved to be a rather large advantage. Now, the cap timer changes have turned this into a moderate advantage for the attackers. The base design makes it very easy for the defenders to dominate one node at any given time, but it's more difficult to keep two defended. And if you don't keep two nodes defended, the timer changes all but eviscerate your advantage at the one node.
Mar 31st 2011 3:47PM I personally like the idea of posting a very small number of CCers (especially rogues) spread out along the roads because of two things -- 1. Tol Barad is a pvp battle that can literally turn in a matter of seconds (I don't know how many times I've seen a victory either foiled or sealed on whether a third base is capped within seconds of a second base being either taken or not taken), and 2.it takes advantage of players' natural aggressiveness and bad tendencies in big scale pvp battles like this.
In short, if you can have a CC player positioned along the road, oftentimes that player can attract the temporary attention of a crowd -- even just by ccing one of them, oftentimes a group will drop what they are doing to attack the enemy. Now one player might not last very long against five, but if you can successfully use one player to even temporarily delay the arrival of five players to capture range by making them take the time to dismount, kill, and remount, then you have made a strategic victory in the numbers game and maybe just maybe a win, if those 5 players would have made the difference in that third node either capping or not capping in time.
Feb 2nd 2011 12:03PM Re: the Reliquary -- I'm not sure there will be any interesting backstory as it seems to me that the Blood Elves have just kind of become the convenient default for when Blizzard wants to give the Horde something kind of Alliance-y, on the theory that being a former member of the Alliance (and an ancient society, as compared to other Horde races) they present fewer retcon hoops to jump through. Horde needs Paladins? Give them to the Blood Elves. Need an explanation for why Dalaran would provide sanctuary to Orcs and Undead? Blood Elf magi have long been active in the Kirin Tor. That rationale seems to kind of provide justification here too for setting up the Horde equivalent of the Explorer's league -- Blood Elves are familiar with the Dwarves archaeological obsession, and as an ancient society themselves it makes sense that the Elves would be more keen than any of the other Horde races to develop and spread that obsession (with the bonus that they see a potential power source in the ancient lore)
May 7th 2010 3:33PM Lumi -- on wrecking ball, fair enough, we'll have to agree to disagree. I definitely concede that it's easier on lower levels, particularly if you are one of certain classes in certain brackets (i.e. DK 50-59; Druid 10-19; etc.). But I still think it's difficult and a bit of an evil achievement inasmuch as every KB increases your visibility and means you are in a situation where you could potentially get killed, making the difficulty of not dying raise with each KB.
On We Had it All Along, I'm just not seeing how it's materially easy to get in a lower bracket. Yes, being able to completely steamroll a team is one way that you could potentially get this achievement, inasmuch as you could bait them into capping 2, putting up an iron defense at another 2, and then turning the 5th into a quagmire that you will capture by force of will at exactly the right moment.
The problem though, and why it is both hard and evil, is that you have to convince EVERYBODY on the team to endure a long match and a greater chance at losing, just to get the achievement. This in a match where in ordinary course, a win would come quickly and easily. If you don't have everybody on board, all it takes is a dissenter or two to leave their base and allow it to get capped, or to go cap an enemy base, and then the math is screwed up. I just don't see getting everybody on board for this in a random battleground; I think you would almost need an entire premade formed for the express purpose of getting the achievement. And even if you have a team that's all on board, if the other team is not on board, again, all it takes is them managing to break through your defenses at one node, or preventing you from capturing the neutral node at the right moment, and once again the numbers get harder to correct.
In short, to reliably get this achievement on any level, I still see you mostly needing:
1. Incredible random luck on when nodes are capped and recapped;
2. A one-side premade or remarkably cohesive random group, that is capable of steamrolling the opponents badly enough to fairly precisely manipulate the timing of every node capture on the field; or
3. A two-side premade or mostly premade where both sides agree to let each other get the achievement in turn over 2 games. I've seen people trying to do this, but I'm guessing it's somewhat difficult to guarantee both premades will be matched against each other.
Those scenarios all combine to make for an evil achievement in my book.
One other thing that occurs to me as I ponder BG achievements -- I don't know if they qualify as "evil," but the AB/EOTS/AV "perfection" achievements have become very difficult since they instituted a queue that at least seeks to create an equal roster on each side before starting. Every once in a while you'll get a mismatch, but rarely. And even there it takes some effort to prevent a team in AB or EOTS from at least getting one tick of points from a node near to their spawn point. In AV, the captains go down like butter these days, and if you slow down to completely defend yours, it makes it difficult to get back on offense and complete the rest of the necessary steps.
May 7th 2010 12:38PM I think you've chosen the wrong battleground achievements for the "most evil."
The two all-star achievements are not all that difficult to get if you decide you want them, particularly depending on your character's role. In particular as a character like a rogue, where you often wind up stealthing around looking for weaknesses and opportunities, you may get the AB one by accident.
Save the Day is kind of random-y, but it seems to happen somewhat frequently on my BG.
Without a Scratch SEEMS like a really evil achievement on its face -- in fact after my first few SOTAs I was puzzled about how it would even be remotely possible. In practice, especially as the expansion gets older, its' actually much easier than you think. You basically have to be on defense first to achieve it -- if you are on defense first, and defend the relic chamber (especially if you defend it in really demoralizing fashion, like only allowing a couple of wall breaches), oftentimes now the other side will simply give up and take their loss rather than play hard for a tie. I've gone through several SOTAs recently where the unsuccessful 1st round side mostly just stays put and afks, allowing the demolishers to just steamroll to the end.
You pointed out the real evil among battleground achievements, "we had it all along." It's an achievement that requires exact, precise timing of point accumulation in a game where the tempo of point accumulation frequently shifts and changes throughout the match. If you play AB frequently you'll realize that getting facially close to it, say 1600 to 1570, is not in terms of play getting close to it at all. Frankly I'm not sure how you'd achieve it other than really terrific luck or else somehow managing to get random people on two opposing sides to all coordinate and give it to one side.
The other achievement that stands out as really evil is wrecking ball. If you get 20 killing blows, in any battleground, you are not screwing around on vehicles or defending a remote node, you are right in the thick of the action. You also make yourself a target to the other team by 1. putting yourself on top of the scoreboard, and 2. Making yourself a target of vengeance for every single player you killed. It's very difficult to keep yourself from dying just once if you are constantly in the thick of battle, even more so if you are a focus target. In a way, with each killing blow you are making yourself increasingly likely to be the enemy focus, so that really qualifies this one for evil.
Mar 16th 2010 3:16PM "My observation is, and always has been, the base mats are worth more then the crafted end products. There are two reasons: the mats are needed by others leveling their profession; and secondly, players needing a crafted item generally get a guild mate to do it gratis provided he provides the base mats."
I agree with this. The problem with a solution like having mats that require a cooldown though (i.e. the cloth), is that the finished product still won't sell for much more than the mat cost, because the inflated materials are still tradable and the price gets baked into the end product. So you wind up with a situation where you would have made just as much profit by simply selling the cloth rather than crafting the armor.
One interesting idea I've been thinking about is for blizzard to make two versions of every tailoring pattern (both of which you learn when you learn a pattern) -- a BoE version and a BoP version. The BoP version will be easier to make with fewer mats, while the BoE version will both require more mats and be on a 3 day cooldown. I think this accomplishes a couple of things for crafting professions: first, it encourages people to take appropriate armor-class professions because they can get cheaper crafted gear for themselves. Second, the cooldown on BoE items curtails the "I can get a guildie or some mook on trade to craft it for me at cost" market (reduces the supply), which will help increase the price.
Mar 16th 2010 3:07PM "There is ZERO PURPOSE to undercutting someone by more than a single copper"
This is simply incorrect too. Pricing stupidity works in both directions and people also list items for far higher than anybody in the market would ever pay for that item.
If there are no cardinal rubies on the AH, and somebody lists one for 3,000g, it's not going to sell at that price. People will find another source for the gem. Undercutting by a single copper would serve no purpose other than to lose a listing fee.
The key to WoW markets, like any market real or imaginary, is to ascertain as best as possible the price, supply, and demand for any given item at any given time, and to price that item for as high as it will sell (or as high as it can be priced to sell 10 or 100 of the item, if you are selling for volume).
Mar 3rd 2010 3:52PM Well, part of the reason that moonkins have 700+ haste is that it's just impossible to not have that much while taking the best gear, although I'll agree that haste remains a very valuable stat above the soft haste cap (albeit less than crit until the lunar crit cap). And you do not want to shed haste just to stay near 400, like you would with hit.
I also agree that notwithstanding relative stat weights, I think balance druids are sort of unique among caster specs (most of which are increasingly valuing haste) in that they need to keep the two stats in, yes, balance. So you never really want to let either drop too low in relation to the other.
Haste above the cap will do amazing things for eclipsed starfires, whereas we can't ignore crit, because although as you correctly note it doesn't increase crit damage, with so much of our damage coming from eclipse, which is triggered by crits, we really need to make sure we have a regular supply of crits.
All in all I would suggest the OP download Simcraft from google, sim her armory, and see what her individual stat weights are. As I said above I suspect she'll find that haste is almost as valuable as spellpower up to 400, and then after 400 that haste remains very valuable but that crit is somewhere in the neighborhood of 30-40% more valuable (again, until the lunar cap, which you don't approach until something like 1000 crit rating).
Mar 3rd 2010 3:43PM Improved Moonkin Form converts 30% of spirit to spell damage. Which still puts it far behind crit or haste, but keeps it from being a totally worthless stat.
Mar 3rd 2010 2:30PM I feel like the "flow" for lack of a better term, of Wrath has not been very good. It started out gangbusters, everything new and shiny and better, and introduced some very high points as it continued (Ulduar; LFD tool), but I feel like it has not aged well (as opposed to TBC, which got better and better and peaked with IQD) and that the progression has been stuttered. Even assuming that we don't go back and add completely new content, I'd change the way things were organized and ordered.
1. Stat inflation has absolutely been terrible. There is just way too much gear inflation starting after Naxxramas and hitting a high point with TOTC and ICC. I would prefer the gear progression to be more gradual. This in turn would help keep old content relevant.
2. I don't like the order of the raids. People have suggested TOTC as the second raid, but honestly, I think it would have functioned just fine as a first raid -- very easy, one room content that acts as an introduction to Blizzard's new "everybody can raid" philosophy. That could be followed by either Naxxramas or Malygos, then followed by Ulduar, and then followed by ICC. Ulduar is in my opinion the best raid Blizzard has ever created and it should have been the penultimate raid of this expansion.
3. This is not huge, but as a side note, I wish they had put some generic scourge lieutenant in A-N 5 man instead of Anub'arak. It just feels weird killing such a big lore figure in a 5 man group at 73, then he comes back as a raid boss. Yes, I know deaths in WoW and all that, but still.
4. I would have really liked to have seen a more tiered release of content. Everybody gets tired of old content eventually, not just because they've been running it over and over, but because the shine wears off. Whereas fresh new content is always sexy and exciting. I would have done much more to stagger the releases of both raids and 5 mans in Wrath. Launch could be UK, UP, Violet Hold, DTK, Gun'drak, Culling, TOTC 5 man, TOTC raid, and Sarth raid. Then in a few months release Naxxramas, Azjol-Nerub, and Old Kingdom. A few months after that, Malygos, Nexus, and Oculus. Then Ulduar, Halls of Stone, Halls of Lighting. Then ICC and the Frozen halls instances. I know that doesn't create any new content and leaves us with less content in the earlier phases of the game, but I think on the whole it's a way of presenting things that keeps bringing more "fresh" content on a more regular basis.