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Posts with tag battlegrounds

Let the blood be spilled

Let the Blood be Spilled
Blizzard Community Manager Daxxarri has taken again to the forums to weigh in on a thread bemoaning level 90s ganking on PvP servers. While it is hardly news that max-level players will occasionally take the opportunity to grief or gank lower level players, indeed, it's been a state of play that's existed pretty much since the game began, CRZ has likely increased the regularity and severity of these occurrences.

There seem to be two vying camps of opinion on this issue, and it's pretty clear from his posts which one Daxxarri falls into:

Daxxarri
This is going to sound weird, and while I do empathize with the frustration that's being expressed in this thread, this conversation still warms the cockles of my black little heart.

Why? Because for too long there was very little distinction between playing on a PvE realm and playing on a PvP realm. We had inadvertently created a situation where there was little risk when leveling in the world on a PvP realm. The experiences were, for all practical purposes, virtually identical, but that wasn't what we had in mind.

Life on a PvP realm can be nasty, brutish and short. Justice is in very short supply. Every action you take in the world carries with it an added level of risk, from questing, to hunting down profession materials, to simply traveling from place to place. You can be attacked at any time, sometimes by an overwhelming force. Of course, the shoe can also be on the other foot, and you'll be able to turn the tables on your attacker, or find clever ways to delay them or escape from them. Some will become roaming slayers, seeking out enemies to destroy.

In short, the experience on a PvP server is different. We want it to be different, and that includes everything from honorable conflict on the field of battle to horribly despicable ganking. It's all part of the fabric that makes a PvP server what it is.

Let the blood be spilled.

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Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

Patch 5.1: No automated PvP queuing for groups greater than 5 people

Blizzard takes steps to prevent Battleground premades
Blizzard Community Manager Daxxarri has taken to the US forums to announce an important step taken with patch 5.1 to help prevent Battleground pre-made groups.

Daxxarri
In patch 5.1, we resolved some issues regarding how Addons interact with the Battleground queue system. It is no longer possible to automate queuing for standard or random Battlegrounds in groups larger than 5. We decided to make this change in order to improve the experience for all players who are queueing into random groups normally and expecting to face similarly random groups, only to find themselves crushed by a full team of coordinated opponents.

We understand that players want to enjoy coordinated team play, and we invite those players to queue into Rated Battlegrounds or play Wargames to have that experience. Players can continue to use Addons to queue for Rated Battlegrounds as well..


The issue with groups over 5 people queueing up is just as Daxxarri states, that pre-made groups have such an inescapable advantage over random groups. The enjoyment of the genuinely random group facing the pre-made in a battleground is massively hindered, and Daxxarri is quite right when saying that players who want to play as a pre-made group should move into rated battlegrounds and wargames, or arenas.

This is a very welcome change, which will no doubt aid players' enjoyment of random battlegrounds. If Blizzard can beat the bots, which Daxxarri has posted about in the past, random battlegrounds will be a great place to have some PvP-focused fun again, but, of course, that's a far larger task. This is a great first step.

Mists of Pandaria is here! The level cap has been raised to 90, many players have returned to Azeroth, and pet battles are taking the world by storm. Keep an eye out for all of the latest news, and check out our comprehensive guide to Mists of Pandaria for everything you'll ever need to know.

Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

Shifting Perspectives: Resto's dismal PvP performance, and why it might get better

Shifting Perspectives Resto's dismal PvP performance, and why it might get better
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, death is common to all trees.

I'm not much of a PvP player. I enjoy random battlegrounds, particularly when I'm healbotting someone who cares whether I live or die, but I lack a certain something when it comes to better performance. I think that something is called talent, or perhaps just luck. We might even call it gear. Regardless, I'm not a great PvPer, so I usually sit on the sidelines and observe while the people who are great PvPers argue about arena team composition and rated battleground strategy. These people have not been enthusiastic about restoration druids in Cataclysm.

That's not normal. Resto has been a strong PvP spec since season two of The Burning Crusade (although we need to make an exception for the dismal season five at the beginning of Wrath of the Lich King), so it was a surprise to see such widespread ambivalence among the PvP population. However, there does seem to be a broad consensus about why resto has so many problems in PvP, and people are cautiously optimistic that Mists of Pandaria will be better.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Battleground Call to Arms not just for weekends anymore

Temple of Kotmogu
Patch 5.0.4 introduced a new battleground schedule in which there is always a Call to Arms battleground instead of weekends only. The Call to Arms changes every Tuesday and Friday, so that players can earn bonus honor every day of the week.

You may ask, "But, Robin, why aren't all the dates covered in that calendar over there? [points to the right sidebar]" Well, I'll tell you. The new Mists of Pandaria battlegrounds have already been scheduled on the in-game calendar, even though they won't be introduced until September 25.

We are currently showing only the BGs that can be played right now, but we are also showing when the Temple of Kotmogu and the Silvershard Mines will be the Call to Arms BGs after launch.

You can always verify the current schedule by viewing the in-game calendar. Just make sure the Battleground Call to Arms filter is selected from the filters dropdown menu at the top right of the calendar.

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: PvP, Mists of Pandaria

Mists of Pandaria bestiary and Temple of Kotmogu previews now available

Official WoW site updated with battleground previews and Mists of Pandaria Bestiary
The official World of Warcraft community site was updated with more Mists of Pandaria previews today. The latest previews are for the next expansion's two new battlegrounds, the Temple of Kotmogu and Silvershard Mines. Both previews showcase the battlegrounds' basic objectives, unique features, and some shiny new screenshots that highlight the aesthetic beauty of the battlegrounds before we litter them with (Alliance) corpses.

For those of you who are interested, WoW Insider's Olivia Grace covered the Temple of Kotmogu and Silvershard Mines earlier this month. Her previews don't have as many pretty pictures, but they're more in-depth on gameplay and tactical information.

In addition to the battleground previews, the official site was updated with a Mists of Pandaria Bestiary. The bestiary will give you a first look into all the new, non-playable races you'll find on the Wandering Isle. You should totally check out the Grummles -- they're my favorite new race.

Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

PvP with the blues on Mists of Pandaria beta realms

PvP with the Blues on the Mists of Pandaria beta
Have you ever wanted to get ganked by Nethaera? Now is your chance. This Monday, July 16, the various development teams (World of Warcraft Encounter, Level Design, Class Design, and QA) will be helping to test the new PvP Battlegrounds, Silvershard Mine and Temple of Kotmogu. These tests will begin at 4:30 p.m. Pacific time. If you like playing with the people who develop and run the game and/or you like testing PvP maps out, this is the event for you.

Keep your eyes on the official forum thread for more details as we get closer to Monday, and get your beta character geared with the easily accessible PvP vendors. The vendors can be found atop the wall between Dread Wastes and Vale of Eternal Blossoms. That way, when Monday comes, you'll be ready for battle with the blues.

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, PvP, Mists of Pandaria

WoW Archivist: The evolution of Alterac Valley

Lokholar attacks the Alliance in Alterac Valley
WoW Archivist explores the secrets of World of Warcraft's past. What did the game look like years ago? Who is etched into WoW's history? What secrets does the game still hold?

The battle was nearly won. Back and forth, a 16-hour war between the Frostwolf Clan and the Stormpike Expedition had ravaged this once-remote valley. Towers and strongholds had been put to the torch. Countless heroes on both sides had fallen to blade and blast. A rampaging troll king had been defeated. Air strikes had rained fire from the sky. Elementals had been summoned and vanquished.

At last, but not without heavy losses, the Frostwolf orcs and their allies had fought their way across the narrow bridge to assault the final bastion of the dwarves. All had sworn to see Vanndar Stormpike dead that day and the valley seized. They would kill him or die in the attempt.

The AV "zone"

The original version of Alterac Valley went live with patch 1.5. Along with Warsong Gulch, these two Battlegrounds were the very first ever added to WoW. Warsong Gulch was designed to be a more traditional PvP experience that anyone who had played Unreal Tournament or Halo could recognize. Some matches could last for a while, but the experience was meant to be a short-term PvP engagement.

Alterac Valley, in its first incarnation, was absolutely nothing like that. AV was not, in any modern sense of the word, a Battleground. AV was a zone.

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Filed under: WoW Archivist

Does tanking exist in PvP?

Tanking in PvP
I was inspired by a recent discussion thread on the Battle.net forums to talk about PvP tanking.

Earlier in Cataclysm, the changes to the tanking mechanic, Vengeance, led to tanking specs suddenly becoming viable damage dealers in PvP. This was removed in 4.3, apparently because it was felt that tanks were too powerful, given their survivability in PvP. Fast forward a few months, and we find some vestiges of PvP in tank specs remain. In mid-level Arena, blood DKs continue to crop up every now and then on survival-centric teams; however, they are not really the most formidable opponent. Their damage output is not so high, and if kited, they can be fairly easily (if slowly) taken down.

Many a feral cat druid will shift into bear form to use Frenzied Regeneration and increase their survival, and bear damage is fairly high (for a tank class, at least). However, bears lack the high self-healing of a blood DK, since Vengeance's removal.

Should Vengeance be returned to PvP? Frankly, I don't think so. Does tanking have a place in PvP? Should anyone PvP as a tank? Does tanking even exist in PvP?

Well, let's have a think about that. What is tanking? Tanking, in a PvE sense, is the act of ensuring the enemy is attacking you and not your weaker allies. If a PvE enemy is attacking a healer, the tank is doing something wrong.

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Filed under: PvP, Blood Sport (Arena PvP)

Basic Battleground Guides: Eye of the Storm

Basic Battleground Guides Eye of the Storm
WoW Insider covers the world of player vs. player action in Blood Sport for fans of Battleground, world PvP and Arena play. Steering you to victory is Olivia Grace. All your base are belong to her.

So, we've dealt with the basics of how to keybind, use macros and focus targets, and heal with the above. Now it's time to get out there and put our skills into action! I've written a general guide to healing in Battlegrounds and touched on tips for novice PvPers in Battlegrounds in my response to a Breakfast Topic.

The tips in the aforementioned columns should be used throughout your PvP life, whatever it is you're doing, but now we're getting a bit more specific. We're heading out into some real, honest Battlegrounds with some tips and strategies. It should be noted that this is aimed at players in random Battlegrounds rather than rated, but these can equally apply to the latter.

Our first stop on the Battleground train is Eye of the Storm. This Burning Crusade-era Battleground addition came up in a recent podcast I did, the subject of some debate as to the best way to win it. So first and foremost, I'd say that there is no surefire way to win a Battleground. No one strategy has an absolute chance of success. There are a few exceptions to this, but just like the vast majority of PvP, every action has an equal and opposite reaction. (Name that scientist for a gold star!)

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Filed under: PvP, Blood Sport (Arena PvP)

WoW Insider's Weekly Recap, featuring TradeChat's Panser

Welcome back to our weekly recap featuring Panser of TradeChat! In our weekly recap, we look back at the hottest news from the past week and whatever other kickin', rad things may have come our way. This week's topics include: If you enjoyed the show, make sure to subscribe to TradeChat, leave a comment, and come back next week for the next episode!

Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

The headspace of switching roles

The headspace of switching roles
It's about as easy to switch your role in World of Warcraft as it has ever been in the history of the game. With dual spec, you can have two ready to go. With the justice/valor system and heroic Hour of Twilight dungeons, you can have a passable off-spec set in a few days. The problem nowadays isn't gear, and it isn't having to go respec to do it. The problem is ingrained habits, and that problem can be the hardest to overcome.

It's certainly far from impossible, though.

The first thing you have to do when switching from tanking or healing to DPS or vice versa is abandon how you approached the job. You're not doing that job anymore. When I first went DPS in Firelands, it took me two weeks to get myself to stop trying to intercept mobs running for the healers or other DPSers and getting myself killed. That was because no one was healing me -- not because they didn't care, but because they had no idea I was about to get aggro on Firelands trash. Why would they? I wasn't a tank. It's not that they didn't appreciate it; it's that they had no way of anticipating I was going to do it.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Raiding, Cataclysm

Breakfast Topic: What's your favorite Battleground?

Image
I heard on Twitter a little while ago that someone was saying (rather boldly, I thought) that most people liked Warsong Gulch over other Battlegrounds. Now, this to me seemed a bit odd, and I wasn't the only one.

To assert that one Battleground is preferred to any other by most people seems to ignore the immense subjectivity inherent in WoW. Matthew Rossi and I recently wrote two pieces on what we like in raiding; if you don't believe me about the subjectivity, check them out! Some people definitely like the very simple premise of Warsong Gulch, but others may prefer the more complex Battlegrounds like Isle of Conquest or Alterac Valley, where at least some strategy is required.

And others simply prefer the ones they think they win the most. I'm probably one of those. Although I play mostly Alliance characters, we win Isle of Conquest a lot (see header image for the tactic), but it's kind of boring. You barely encounter any Horde for making with the stabby. No, my favourite is the other one the Alliance seems to win a lot (for me, anyway), which is Eye of the Storm. I love that Battleground, I really do! It's so simple, yet something about its layout just works.

So how about you? Which Battlegrounds do you love, and which make you groan inwardly when you see the loading screen? I warn you now, I will glare sternly at anyone who says they hate all Battlegrounds because they hate PvP, OK?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Mists of Pandaria Beta: Certain PvP maps may be blacklistable

Image
In the latest Mists of Pandaria beta patch, Wowhead has uncovered some quite interesting new client strings that might herald a change in the way you choose which Arena or Battleground to fight in.
  • ERR_PVP_BLACKLIST_CAP = "You have already blacklisted the maximum number of maps."
  • ERR_PVP_MAP_NOT_FOUND = "Blacklisted map not set."
To me, this seems like an excellent idea for Arena players. There's always lots of controversy about the random damage and LoS components found on some maps (hello, Ring of Valor); this would let you avoid that entirely. Of course, that means you can no longer use it as an excuse, either -- so you may not want to reach for the blacklist too quickly. While I don't do much in Arenas, I certainly wouldn't mind a way to ensure not getting WSG three times in a row.

One concern, though, is if Blizzard allows too much blacklisting, that could make matchmaking much more difficult. A smooth matchmaking process has been one of the highlights of WoW compared to other online games, so any algorithm tweaks have to be made carefully.

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: News items, PvP

5 awesome ways World of Warcraft has improved since day one

I've been known to wax poetic about the good old days of vanilla World of Warcraft from time to time. I have lots of crazy good memories about the early days of the game -- exploring the world, playing through quests that are now long gone, raiding old content when it was current, that sort of thing. And I've followed the story of Warcraft along the way, delighting the various ways its changed and shifted over the years. It's no secret that I loved the early days of WoW -- heck, I've been playing this game for seven years now. Something's kept me sticking around, right?

Every now and again, I'll have a conversation with a friend that starts with said friend asking, "Hey, Anne! You like vanilla WoW. If they ever released a server that was just vanilla WoW with nothing else on it, would you play it?" And then there's a moment where I think about that. I think about the first day I was presented with the character selection screen, going over my choices with wide-eyed delight. I think about the night elf druid I made, and the months spent exploring this shiny new world. I think of my Forsaken priest and the hours of fun I had raiding with 39 other people.

And then I say to my friend, "No. Oh, no no no. Heck no."

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Blizzard MVPs create Cross-Realm Rated Battlegrounds site

Image
First, we had a cross-realm raid group site. Now, Blizzard forum MVPs Eldacar and Cyaga have created The LFG List, a cross-realm group finder for players to get involved in Rated Battlegrounds. Part of the group's Battlemasters site, The LFG List is currently active in the United States only; other versions will be rolled out after the U.S. version has been running smoothly for a while.

How do you get onto the list? Well, that's simple!

If you are ready for a Battleground or two within the next hour, head over to the start page and choose your faction. That will take you to a page with an IRC window and an entry screen below it. Type in your realm and your character's name in the entry screen to retrieve your basic details from the Armory. You can add in notes and doublecheck that your main spec and off spec are correct.

Note the IRC Name section -- this is where you fill in the name that you're using in the live IRC chat above. This way, you can give yourself an IRC name of your choosing and seek out Rated Battleground buddies with any character. Other IRC users will see your name in the list and can contact you directly -- and you're off! Your entry stays up for an hour, so if you're looking for groups further in advance, you can head over to the Battlemasters Forums and make a post.

As an aside, the Horde chat seems currently rather more popular than the Alliance chat, hence the split channels. As a mainly Alliance player myself, I'm not OK with this! So I'm putting the call out to my fellow humans, dwarves, draenei, worgen, gnomes and night elves: People of the Alliance! Get on over to The LFG List and get involved!

Filed under: News items, PvP

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