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Posts with tag 2v2

Scare Beast Change: Does it make Hunters the new anti-Druid?

In what could be the biggest change in 2.4.2, Hunters are getting a pretty generous buff to the spell Scare Beast. Not only is the range ballooning from 10 yards to 30 yards, but it will have an instant cast time as well. Well it does have limited application in PvE, this will be huge in PvP, for one simple reason: It will work on Druids in forms.

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Arena

Tracking the Tournament Realm rankings from the armory

If you're interested in keeping track of the 3v3 Arena Tournament, You can look at Vhiari's breakdowns, sure, and good ones they are. But there's also another resource that should come in handy: The official ladder listings right on the official Armory. By choosing the Coliseum 1 battlegroup, you can see the rankings for the Tournament Realms. The current top 3v3 team, Outrageously Better Pros, Is a Priest/Rogue/Druid team, although the Druid has no games played. Maybe they used to be Priest Mage Rogue, which is a pretty strong combo these days.

It should be fun to watch these rankings as the tournament progresses, both to see what class and spec makeups stay near the top, and to see what outrageous and silly names people can come up with for their teams -- without breaking the naming policy, that is.

What's interesting to me is that despite the fact that the Tournament itself is 3v3 only, the 2v2 and 5v5 brackets are still in full swing, with quite a few teams. I suppose this is a sign that people really do like the idea of a good solid PvP only realm to duke it out with high powered characters to prove their worth. I have to wonder if Blizzard is watching those brackets as closely as they're watching the 3v3 bracket, or if this is a sign that they may make these arena practice realms more permanent in the future.

Either way, all this activity should be fun to watch. Keep your browser pointed to WoW Inside for all the latest Tournament Realm news, including the escapades of our own WoW Insider Arena Team.

Here's some arena page trivia too, while we're on the subject: Mike pointed out to me that the blade that Draenei chick on the arena ladder page is holding is known as The Hungering Cold. Its model was used for the Infamous "Sword of 1,000 Truths" in the South Park episode "Make Love, Not Warcraft." It currently drops in Naxxramas, so chances are we'll see it again come Wrath of the Lich King.

Filed under: Ranking, Blizzard, News items, PvP, Arena

Blogger makes the wrong call on Druids

I guess I spoke too soon when I said that Druids were being mature about the Cyclone nerf. Balancedruid of Tichondrius demanded on the public forums that Blizzard reconsider the reduction of Cyclone from thirty to twenty yards. He states that although Resto Druids are very powerful in arenas, this form of crowd control is the most appealing aspect of a Balance Druid for most 5v5 arena teams. This change was notably absent form previous patch 2.4 Public Test Realm Build notes.

Several threads have been started on this topic. At least one was mysteriously deleted within five hours of its creation. Snuffymcmoo of Terokkar has begun a petition to rescind the change. Druids are flocking in protest to the change. I can honestly say that I'm not surprised at expressions of outrage. I was just expecting a little more- They're Druids, not Warlocks after all. I apologize for my earlier statements about Druids rolling with the nerf-hammer.

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Filed under: Druid, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Arena

Bornakk: Incoming Arena queue relief in 2.4

Bornakk revealed a welcome bit of future patch info on the general forums recently, announcing that there is an incoming improvement on a future 2.4 update that should lower arena queuing times across the board. This is definitely welcome news for many of us, although those who counted on getting chores done during the queue might get a little disappointed!

We've heard in the past that blizzard didn't want to rush in to any quick fixes and was considering the queue time issue carefully, so hopefully that means they've found a solution that will stick. Thus far, aside from the occasional mishap from a sneaky warlock and the lack of certain expected class changes, they seem to have had a smooth and well received patch on their hands.

While some people were asking for a hot fix in the thread, Bornakk assured them that the change was complicated enough that needed a patch. Being someone who often ends up running his 2v2s on Saturday or Sunday evening and experiences queue times that sometimes climb to 10 minutes or more, I'd say the wait will be worth it if it means I don't have to wait around quite so long in the future. Faster queue times, at the least, mean I can fit another daily or two in.

Filed under: Patches, News items, PvP, Arena

New online tool shows popular arena setups

You may already be aware that SK Gaming has a listing of the top arena teams in the US, Europe, and Korea, all ranked against one another. Now SK Gaming has added another feature to this listing, which shows both the most "popular setups for high ranked teams" and the "average rating for popular setups." You can see very clearly the top five class combinations in each category of the arenas, from 5-vs-5 to 2-vs-2, all right above their regular listing of the top teams in each category.

I originally found this new interface via World of Raids, and they have their own summary of the most popular class setups. However, clicking through some of the options on SK Gaming's site, you can clearly see it's not just a simple matter of having the right classes in order to win. In 5-vs-5 it seems that, for the most part, the warrior and the paladin provide the backbone of a good group, while after that, you need a balance of some hybrid healing and dps classes.

In 3-vs-3 and 2-vs-2, however, you can find many groups doing very well without any warriors or paladins at all. The traditional roles of "tank, healing, damage" we see in PvE obviously don't always apply in the arena, where the balance of your team's abilities working together is what matters most. Druids, rogues, and warlocks in particular seem to shine much more here than in 5-vs-5.

So if you're a serious arena junkie, and you like analyzing these things, head on over and see what you make of these various class combinations. As always, our regular Blood Sport column can help you, as V'Ming has lots of information about how the classes are balanced together as well.

Filed under: PvP, Arena

The 2-vs-2 arena queue and you

We usually don't realize it, but there is actually an upper limit to the number of instances that can be created in WoW at any given moment. If all the players on your server somehow decided to run Karazhan at about the same time, you'd find that after a certain number of raids had gotten started, some players would be stuck at the loading screen, waiting for the others to finish. Normally, of course, it's not a problem, because people don't all go to Karazhan at the same time. But at prime time, the 2-vs-2 arena instances are as popular as can be, so the 2-vs-2 arena instance slots get full, and frustrated players sometimes find themselves waiting a good long time for one of their turn to fight.

Last month, Drysc said that the Blizzard team still didn't know what to do about it. But now, he says that they do have a special change planned to help solve this problem. It's going to require a patch, though, and not the upcoming patch 2.3.2, either, but it is scheduled for some point in the future, "as soon as possible." Patch 2.4 perhaps? "The change," Drysc says, "will make it so that more instances can kick up in a shorter amount of time. Which doesn't necessarily mean there can't ever be a wait again, but it should drastically decrease them." However much "drastically" is, shorter is always better than longer, when it comes to queues!

Filed under: Patches, PvP, Arena

No incoming fix for long arena queues

With the popularity of the new arena season, queue times across the servers are getting pretty long. This is especially noticeable in the 2v2 bracket, which is the most popular team size. When a player posted his complaints about the long queues today, Drysc chimed in to give indication that there will be no quick fix incoming. Instead, the devs are going to wait to get the big picture on the influx of PvPers instead of making rash decisions.

I don't know what your experiences have been like lately, but the queues on my main server seem to be getting longer and longer rather than diminishing. The new season has only been out for about a week now, so perhaps it's too early to expect interest to be fading, but I hope there is some sort of solution soon. I've contemplated moving up to the 3v3 bracket, but I've heard via word of mouth that those queues are getting pretty lengthy as well. Perhaps it's time to give 5v5 a chance once again, if I can corral some of my guildmates to chose a specific time to do our matches and stick with it.

What has your experience with the arena queues been like since the new season began?

Filed under: PvP, Forums, Arena

2v2 almost was 4v4

Nestled in a hokey thread (as important as the overpowered McRib is, it's not something I'd really expect a blue to be commenting on), Kalgan has dropped some insight about how Blizzard is viewing the very strange 2v2 Arena lineup. 2v2 is the weirdest balance of all, because not only is WoW not a dueling game, it's not a 2v2 game either. It's very possible for there to be two classes within four players that don't have balances against each other.

And Kalgan says that Blizzard realizes this, and as a result, they are still not happy with the way 2v2 is balanced out-- Kalgan says that there are a lot of classes "left out of having a reasonable chance" to compete in the format, because of the "endurance" nature of the game. In fact, Blizzard almost went with a 4v4 Arena instead (in addition to the 3v3 and 5v5 teams now in the game), and abandoned the 2v2 idea entirely. The reason 2v2 stayed is that Kalgan agrees that players should be able to grab a friend and play. So Blizzard apparently took on the bigger challenge of balancing 2v2 just to keep players who didn't have lots of great PvPing friends in the Arena game.

Was it worth it? I've played both 2v2 and 5v5 formats, and I'd have to say that 2v2 is an interesting format, but the players angry about balance are right-- there are just some fights that can't be won in 2v2. I don't know if that's reason enough to have decided against it and gone with 4v4 instead (and I also don't think that there are lots of players that have friends enough to play 2v2 and not one of the bigger brackets), but Blizzard does have a long road ahead of them if they want to make 2v2 seriously balanced. Depending on how many people they've got playing there (my hunch is that 5v5 is much more popular, but that's just a hunch, I haven't seen the numbers), that may not be a road worth traveling.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Ranking, Blizzard, PvP

This week in the Arena

Players participating in Arena PvP get more than cool prizes -- the top 0.5% of participating teams are also going to be immortalized in Blizzard's Hall of Fame. And the top teams from season one have just shown up.

Also, the second qualifying round for the 2v2 Championship Gaming Series has begun. The live CGS tournament will be taking place at BlizzCon in August -- and everyone here at WoW Insider wishes the competing teams the best of luck.

And finally in Arena news for the week, we've got stats on the top 20 US Arena teams compiled by Caster. The data, as always, is interesting (if a bit disheartening for some classes). Here's the basic class breakdown, but for more details on precise numbers of each class and talent spec breakdowns, check the original post.

5v5 Arenas
  • Paladin: 18%
  • Warrior: 18%
  • Priest: 14%
  • Shaman: 12%
  • Mage: 12%
  • Warlock: 11%
  • Rogue: 6%
  • Hunter: 5%
  • Druid: 4%
3v3 Arenas
  • Warrior: 16%
  • Priest: 15%
  • Paladin: 15%
  • Warlock: 14%
  • Mage: 13%
  • Rogue: 12%
  • Shaman: 8%
  • Druid: 6%
  • Hunter: 2%
2v2 Arenas
  • Warlock: 21%
  • Priest: 15%
  • Paladin: 15%
  • Warrior: 14%
  • Rogue: 13%
  • Druid: 9%
  • Mage: 5%
  • Shaman: 5%
  • Hunter: 2%

Filed under: Blizzard, PvP

Arena stats from the second season start

Caster has posted his "first successful pull" of an exhaustive list of arena PvP stats about class and spec over on the forums. There are tons of stats to play around with here-- for each bracket of 5v5, 3v3, and 2v2, he's got the average, minimum, and maximum of specs for each class, wins and losses, the low, average, and high of hit points, and even a breakdown of who's grouping with who.

Not surprisingly (though I was surprised back when Arenas first started up), Warriors and Paladins are topping the charts in terms of numbers, so it seems a good way to win 5v5 Arenas is simply to stay alive. Apparently 2v2 teams are the most volatile (since people switch around with them all the time), but the numbers there are the most interesting-- Warlocks and Priests top the charts there (thanks a lot, Fear), and it turns out Druids might have actually have a place in Arena PvP-- as long as it's right alongside a Lock.

And the big loser is apparently Hunters-- their numbers are down to single digits in 2v2 and 3v3 (as in 1 and 2 total), which means players are not taking their Hunters into the arenas. Is that because Hunters aren't useful or viable enough in the smaller teams? I'll leave that one up to you.

[ via WoW LJ ]

Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Warlock, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Classes, Talents

CGS 2v2 Arena information

There were some people out there who thought that since WoW wasn't an FPS or RTS, that it didn't really belong in the world of competitive gaming. Heck, a friend of mine used to like to say that it wouldn't work unless you were "trying to judge one elf dancing on a mailbox compared to another." (This friend, I should add, is anti-WoW) That's why I'm glad to see the Arena competitions becoming more and more prevalent as time goes on.

As Drysc recently announced on the forums, World of Warcraft is set to appear in this year's Championship Gaming Series. Players will have a chance to land a spot in the draft at BlizzCon. And for those who thumb their noses at gaming as a possible job -- the winners stand to make between $30k and $100k when you figure in the base salary, bonuses for winning, and prize money. (I just hope it includes good medical, because I sense some carpal tunnel in the mix too. :D )

Check out Drysc's full announcement from the forums behind the jump...

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, PvP, BlizzCon

2.1 and Beyond: New arena: Ruins of Lordaeron

"Games for Windows" magazine has released their third article about the things to come post patch 2.1. Above the Undercity will be a new PVP arena, called "the Ruins of Lordaeron."

This will be a new 2, 3, and 5-man arena available sometime after the next content patch. Blizzard has taken what they learned from the previous two arenas and tried some new things in the new map. Attempting to cut down on the geometry features and line-of-sight breaking objects was a goal in this arena. While there are still a few hiding spots, they tend to be in the middle of the map.

Another option that Blizzard is thinking about implementing is the ability to choose which arena map you play on. The downside, however, is that by doing so you are limiting the number of people in the queues by splitting them up into smaller specific queues.

While I've never been a big PVP buff, I'm sure that those of our readers that are will be excited to have another new arena map to play!

You can read the article here.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items, Add-Ons

Losing 5v5 matches gives more arena points than winning 2v2

How much time have you all spent in the arenas so far? I've played a few skirmishes, but most of my time lately has been spent making my way up to 70. A friend and I had planned to roll a 2v2 arena team, but now I'm not so sure: the latest math done by players says that if you lose a 5v5 match, you actually earn more arena points than if you win a 2v2 match.

Paladinsucks has the tip on this one: they link to this forum post by Darkhorse on Mannoroth that lays out the problem pretty well. Basically (and regular readers will know how bad I am at math), Blizzard has put a reduction to 60% on arena points earned from a 2v2 rating. The reason is because consider that it takes more skill to beat a 5man group than a 2man group. Here's the numbers crunch-- I'll be staying away from those, except to say that winning 10 arena games in 2v2 nets you only 335 arena points, while losing 10 5v5 games will still grant you 377 arena points. If gaining points is your goal, you're way better off messing around in 5v5 rather than clawing your way to the top through 2v2.

Now, not everyone is after points necessarily-- Blizzard obviously wants the 2v2 people to do it for the glory, not the points. And Drysc does point out that these numbers are only after one week of winning or losing-- if you continue to win in 2v2, you'll get lots more points than losing in any bracket, while if you continue to lose in 5v5, your points will start to drop pretty precipitously. As for solutions, the current setup is "working as intended," but lots of players are asking for the points reduction on the 2v2 and 3v3 matches to be weakened-- 2v2 shouldn't be worth as much as 5v5, but it shouldn't be worth nothing. Whether or not Blizzard will go for that remains to be seen. Looks like I better find three more people and make a 5v5 team.

Filed under: Blizzard, PvP, Expansions

Breakfast Topic: Best 2v2 team

With Arena season starting today, I'd like to hear your ideas for the best 2-person team. Yesterday, Etek suggested Warlock and Priest, which would be nice for longevity -- Priest heals Lock, therefore Lock can DPS forever; or if the Priest is shadow, as would probably be optimal, Shadow Weaving will help the Lock's DPS, and Vampiric Embrace will still keep him topped off. Another good combo that comes to mind is Paladin and Warrior. With nine classes, there are 81 45 [thanks, Dave et al.] different possible teams of two. Which do you think will come out on top? Of course, there'll probably be some aspect of rock-paper-scissorsness (caster duos are going to fare worse against Rogues, for instance), but I suspect certain duos are still going to be stronger in general than others.

Filed under: PvP, Breakfast Topics, Features

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