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Posts with tag classbalance

Blood Sport: Season 3, rise of the Hunter?

Every week, V'Ming - who thinks that gnome warlocks are travesties of nature and need to be KOSed - shares thoughts and ideas on becoming deadlier at the Arenas.

I'm postponing part two of Building an Arena team to look at the effects of patch 2.3, with Arena Season 3 just round the corner on Nov 27. With this patch, we are looking at some of the biggest changes to how a few classes work since WoW's launch in 2004, particularly for hunters and druids.

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Classes, Blood Sport (Arena PvP), Arena

Blood Sport: Building an Arena team, part 1

Every week, V'Ming - who thinks that gnome warlocks are travesties of nature and need to be KOSed - shares thoughts and ideas on becoming deadlier at the Arenas.

Ah, the Arenas! Where heart-pumping battles are fast and hard-hitting. Losers take a dirt nap and victors are that much closer to honor, glory and ... 'welfare epics'. (That's the subject of another debate; I personally love how my shoulders looks, welfare or not.)

In this article, we'll look at some critical things to consider when building and running a team to participate, compete and have fun. For where to go and how to form Arena teams, check out the official Building Your Team guide.

We have looked at 1v1 combat and recognized that some classes do perform better in certain formats than others. This is a result of the classes' innate asymmetry - to cater for a better MMORPG, some say PvE, experience - rather than faulty PvP design.

Without resorting to histrionics in the WoW forums, thinking PvPers exploit current game design to compete effectively within the rules and environment - playing the metagame, so to speak.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, How-tos, PvP, Guides, Classes, Blood Sport (Arena PvP), Arena

Blood Sport: Perfect balance, the PvP pipe dream

Thank you for all your comments on my first blog entry! Yes, PvP is indeed a volatile topic to write about, and I fully expect some of you to disagree passionately with me. I constantly seek to pull information, and opinions from a wide range of sources and players, so that we can all make better sense of this ever-changing beast we all love called PvP. I do not know it all - and I suspect nobody does - we can all learn something through this exchange of ideas.

"Nerf warlocks!"

A familiar refrain in the forums, in general chat, and even in guild chat. So familiar that OP has almost become an affectionate term for warlocks. But can anyone remember a time when people believed that Blizzard employees all played class x and when the prevailing QQ in the community was "Nerf class x!"?

Have you ever thought that a certain class was 'so madly imba' that you wished the devs would fix it immediately, especially after you've been mauled by that class?

The idea of 'balance' is seductive - imagine WoW where you walk into every fight confident that your character can beat any opponent. Is balance really about that? Is balance achievable? Even if we get it, do we, as players, really want it?

Patch day comes and with every nerf and/or buff, we assume that the devs are trying to reach that nirvana of Perfect Balance. Why is Blizzard happy with a rock-paper-scissors model? Wouldn't everyone be happier if there was Perfect Balance?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Classes, Blood Sport (Arena PvP), Arena

Blood Sport: Rock, paper, scissors?

Between Arenas, V'Ming, aka Vims, spends his time as a 70 affliction lock feeling OP in AV, soaking arcane damage from the Curator and enslaving Olm's doggies.

Sometime in August, an LFM call was made from the rooftops of WoW Insider. I wrote in, pitching the idea of an Arena-centric column. The good people at WoW Insider liked what I had to offer – so here I am, the new kid on the blog!

I've been playing this game since May '05; ventured into DM North way too many times for the Rod of the Ogre Magi (in vain), then took a break from the game when I decided that 40-man raids weren't for me. I returned in a big way when Burning Crusade hit. Besides WoW – yes, there are other games – I've dabbled in DDO, Guild Wars, and even Saga of Ryzom. I've also been a player of Magic the Gathering for a couple of years, and have given the WoW TCG a spin, as a Gnome Rogue.

No, I did not grind to High Warlord, nor am I part of Power Trip. What I offer in this column is an experienced player's perspective of the Arena game – the theorycraft behind matchups, how to prepare for it, things to consider while going at it, and learning from the best in the business. Let's dive into the most basic of PvP encounters: 1v1.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Classes, Blood Sport (Arena PvP), Arena

Is ignorance of class changes bliss?

Ahhhh, how I love the Elitist Jerks forums, the home of the most intelligent, informed, and well-written players of WoW. EJ produced another gem of a topic recently that made me think a bit about the purpose of sites like ours, and what function they serve in the overall scheme of WoW.

Malan, who plays the tauren shaman Keiji on Skullcrusher, recently posted in a thread on the shaman forums about an upcoming patch. Rather than complain about shaman mechanics, however, he asked the community manager Nethaera an important meta-question: If most WoW players don't read the forums, and the forums are the main way the developers and community managers tell new information to the player base, then isn't there a huge gap in communication for most players?

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Filed under: Fan stuff, Blizzard

Kalgan on class balance in 2.2 and 2.3

There is a huge thread rolling on the forums that starts off with a reference to Tom "Kalgan" Chilton talking about PvP at BlizzCon. There, he said that Warlocks (and other classes) weren't necessarily balanced for 1v1 PvP-- instead, the classes are balanced for arenas (moreso 5v5 than 2v2 and 3v3, but those as well). This, of course, brought a chorus of anger from players-- considering that lots of World PvP is actually 1v1, why should any classes get a break that way?

Kalgan, in return, basically says it's one or the other-- there is no way developers can get everything balanced all the way across the board, so they tend to balance as much as possible, which leaves some places where classes are more powerful than others. A little bit of OP, in other words, is acceptable, as long as the other classes have their place to shine as well. I found this to happen at BlizzCon as well-- when the designers explain their position to you, it seems completely reasonable. But when you go back in game, and a Warlock deathcoils you into oblivion, all the nonsense about balance and 1v1 vs. other situations goes right out the window, and you just want them to fix the game again.

At any rate, big changes are coming, says Kalgan, both in 2.2 and 2.3, in terms of class balance (specifically the DoT/Resilience change and the Mace spec nerf). As Boubouille says, it's looking more and more like 2.3 will be a "big" patch, with lots and lots of changes and revisions for each class in the works.

Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items

Nerf.... wait, who do we want to nerf this week?

The cries to nerf warlocks have been so loud on the forums lately that it's nearly refreshing to see them replaced by something else. This week's nerf cries seem to focus almost entirely on druids, as forum posters run back and forth about whether or not druids are overpowered and, if so, how to fix them. And, of course, the there's always the constant cycle of "nerf your class, buff my class" posts.

Those claiming druids are overpowered say that druids shouldn't be able to tank like a warrior, DPS like a rogue (or, I suppose, a mage, depending on spec), kite like a hunter, and heal like priest. And the druids argue that they can't do all of these things at once -- and to be as good as any primary class, they have to spec for it and gear for it which limits their effectiveness in other areas.

And in a massively multiplayer game like this, where major class changes can come unexpectedly with any patch or hotfix, I wonder which class will be overpowered next week, and the week after. Taking all bets...

Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Classes

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