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Posts with tag gank

Encrypted Text: How to run the Molten Front

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any questions or article topics you'd like to see covered.

Varian Wrynn isn't happy. He sent his best and brightest men to the Molten Front to assist the Guardians of Hyjal in invading the Firelands, but all he received back was a stack of casualty alerts. The cause of death on each report was the same: several deep dagger wounds. As Varian assigned more soldiers to the Molten Front, he simply received more body bags in return. Varian confronted Garrosh about the issue, claiming that the Warchief was breaking their peace accord by using assassins in the Molten Front. Garrosh feigned ignorance and promised Varian that he'd find the perpetrator and have him properly handled. The next day, I received a post from Garrosh himself. It was brief: "Lok'tar, brother!"

I've read several articles that claim that world PVP is dead and has been for a long time. The truth is that world PVP is alive; it has simply transitioned into a seasonal event. With the release of the Molten Front quest hub, Blizzard's developers directed a ton of level 85 players into a zone where they can't use their flying mounts. If that doesn't count as revitalizing world PVP, then I don't know what does. I spend every spare moment I have plunging my daggers into the questers' ribcages. There's a plethora of targets available, with new enemies zoning in every minute. World PVP hasn't been this active since the Isle of Quel'Danas, and that means I have a lot of catching up to do.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Gank like a pro with the Ganker's Kit 2.0


WoW forums user Tantojutsu put together the great Ganker's Kit of Ganking 2.0, based off of an older and hilarious thread, detailing the wonderful items and abilities available to make stalking and killing player prey in game that much more fun. Rogues are already deadly and frightening, and when I hear that stealth sound, I immediately spin my head around looking for a sign of a shadowy attacker. Some of my favorite points on the list include a list of banners you can plant on your dead foes, the use of focusing lenses to quickly point toward a target, and using the 2010 Winter Veil MiniZep pet as air recon. Tantojutsu put together a great list, and all of you would-be gank artists should definitely check it out.

Filed under: Rogue, PvP, Humor

Encrypted Text: The art of the gank


Every Wednesday, Chase Christian of Encrypted Text invites you to enter the world of shadows, as we explore the secrets and mechanics of the Rogue class. This week, we discuss how to gank with style and grace.

You're tired. You've been slaying the denizens of Icecrown Citadel for hours, you've spent your entire week clearing the daily heroics for your valuable Emblems of Frost, and you can't remember the last time you left Dalaran when you weren't en route to a raid. Your work has not been in vain, and you probably have some stiff new leather armor and maybe a plastic-wrapped weapon or two to show for it.

Your new armor is too tight, it is stifling and you must be nimble. If your weapons are too mint, they won't fit in your hands, and they will throw off your balance. With such little time left at level 80, we don't have the luxury of underperforming. How can you make your armor flexible to allow you to avoid enemy attacks? How can you mold your weapon to become an extension of your own arm? And how can you vent the pent up stress of mindlessly spamming Fan of Knives in heroics for hours on end? Luckily, there's a magic element that will solve all three of these problems: innocent blood.

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Filed under: Rogue, PvP, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

WoW Moviewatch: Don't Make Me Get My Main


Cranius
is the legendary WoW musician behind Big Blue Dress and Darrowshire. If you've been following Moviewatch, then you already know he worked with equally amazing machinimator Legs to create a music video for Wrought. For BlizzCon 2009, the pair again created an astounding piece of art, titled Don't Make Me Get My Main.

The story of the video is something with which most of us can empathize. At least, you can empathize with it if you've ever tried leveling an alt up through Stranglethorn. A beleaguered low level character is just trying to get his quests done, but a vile Blood Elf repeatedly gray-ganks the poor chap. The protagonist implores the ganker to leave him alone, before he's forced to go get his accomplished, powerful main character.

I'll avoid spoilers for the ending, but trust me when I say it's probably yet another experience most of us have probably suffered through before. Congratulations to Cranius and Legs on winning a first place prize with this video.


Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an e-mail at machinima AT wow DOT com.


Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, WoW Moviewatch, BlizzCon

WoW Moviewatch: R.A.M - Episode 1



M??xans! presented R.A.M - Episode 1 over on Machinima.com. He listed it as a comedy, but I'm forced to wonder if it wouldn't be better as "Surrealist" or something. The movie is shot in most black and white, but at the end, it spontaneously bursts into color.

The plot seems simple. A gnome is out adventuring in Tanaris, when a undead rogue decides to grief him. (I know, the possibility of such an event is inconceivable to most of us.) After a bit of trial and tribulation, the gnome swaps out for his draenei. The draenei kills the rogue, and proceeds to camp his corpse.

The whole video is very odd. The pacing is slow, and most of its framing shots are reminsicent of old, silent movies. For example, there are several face-frames given to the gnome while the rogue is creeping up. These imply the gnome is unaware of his pending disaster, and paying the creeping Undead no attention. This kind of technique was key to silent films, to help portray a better understanding of the events to its audience. I felt the technique was valuable to "R.A.M," but still felt slow and clunky over the duration of a long movie.

I can't say whether I liked or disliked "R.A.M." It mostly confused me, and I wasn't quite sure what to make of it. If it's Episode 1, however, I look forward to Episode 2. Sometimes, these things make more sense as they play out.

Click here to see it yourself!

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Previously on Moviewatch ..

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Machinima, WoW Moviewatch

Breakfast topic: Bunk in my trunk

I'm sure we've all had someone dash ahead of us when we're out gathering to take our mining node, our herb, or even our skin. It's frustrating when it's a member of the opposite faction who does this. On a PvP server, you might kill them, on a PvE server, your only recourse is a /rude. It's more annoying when it's a member of your own faction and you can't even kill them. Ultimately the same is also true of Daily Quests and some quest mobs. Whenever recourse's are scarce, bad blood settles in.

I have never seen a quest that brings out the worst in players than "Junk in My Trunk" in Utgarde Pinnacle. For this quest you must gather items laying around the instance. There are not enough for a full group on the quest to pick therm up on the same run, so many people jockey to be the first to get their junk. The first time I ran that instance I was amazed at how greedy people would be. The tank would pull but the healer was off picking up a silver bar or a bauble. You guessed it, wipefest.


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Filed under: Items, Virtual selves, Breakfast Topics, Instances, Quests

Breakfast topic: The calm before the storm

The expansion draws ever nearer, and many folks are working away at the last important bits of Burning Crusade content. We're looking to see Wrath by the end of this year. I've been spending a lot of time leveling alts to get ready for Wrath of the Lich king. I've noticed that this has been surprisingly easy compared to my previous leveling experiences. In the last week or so I've leveled my Warrior from 40 to 56 with very little resistance. I've probably only been ganked a total of ten or so times.

I'm beginning to think either most people have shifted their priorities from hunting lowbies to preparations for the level 70 to 80 grind. Or could it be that many of the folks who would ordinarily be giving me grief have been preoccupied playing in the beta test? It reminds me of the unofficial truce between factions immediately following the release of BC.

Has your gaming experience changed recently?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Breakfast Topics, Leveling, Alts, Wrath of the Lich King

Flying mounts and ruined PvP

Have flying mounts killed off world PvP in Outland? I'm on a PvE server, so I don't see it much anyway, but folks on a PvP server are complaining that whenever they find a good target and get close, the person just hops on their "carebear cloud" and flies away. Of course, "xxxx ruined PvP" is one of the most common types of QQ (although "xxxxx class is broken!" probably beats it), but is Blizzard protecting folks on flying mounts by letting them escape a fight too fast?

Neth says no, of course -- she says that flying away from (or into) a fight is just another method PvPers have in their arsenal. And a few commenters in the thread make the point that I would: odds are that if someone is running away from you, it's not really a fair fight -- flying mounts may have ruined ganking, but they haven't ruined actual PvP.

Of course, what people really want here is a way to attack someone in the sky, and fortunately, with Wrath of the Lich King, your prayers will be answered -- not only have we seen flying vehicles fighting in the air, but Blizzard has confirmed anti-air capabilities. If you're just looking for a gank, and are angry when that level 64 runs away from your kitted-out 70 Rogue, you're probably still going to be unhappy. But if you're looking for the fight to go up in the air when your opponent does, Northrend probably has what you need.

Filed under: Rogue, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, PvP

Breakfast Topic: Camping out


I have a love/hate relationship with Stranglethron Vale. I find the quests to be interesting, and I like the colors used in the zone. It is, however, a hotbed of PvP action. On a PvP server there are always opportunities to gank or be ganked. This tends to lead to an escalation of alts. It goes something like this.

1. You get ganked while killing Bloodscalp Trolls.
2. You resurrect and wait for the perfect opportunity to exact your retribution.
3. They log onto their level 70 and one-shot your level 32 alt.
4. You log into your 70, fold, spindle, and mutilate your foe's 70 until they cry for help.
5. Their buddy joins the fight.
6. Your buddy joins the fight.
7. Half of their guild rushes to STV.
8. Your guild matches their fire power.

It's really interesting to watch something like that happen. I'm not sure how anyone who has no 70s on the server survives the most ganktastic zones in the game. I can't quite comprehend how people can feel compelled to hang out in these zones at high levels just for ganking. I imagine that they're all either bitter about their own leveling experiences, or maybe they're short.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Breakfast Topics, Leveling, Factions, Alts

"An armed society is a polite society."

Or so wrote Robert Heinlein in Beyond the Horizon. The general idea was that, in a country where there were serious (and officially sanctioned) consequences to misbehavior from quarters other than the police, you'd wind up with a place where people really thought hard about whether it was worth pissing someone off just for the fun of it.

Whenever I'm reading about PvP, that quote always springs to mind. People who have played MMORPG's with more "hardcore" PvP systems have mentioned that the amount of random ganking you see in WoW just doesn't seem to occur on the same scale elsewhere. WoW's PvP is pretty consequence-free. Corpse runs are annoying, sure, and being camped is nobody's idea of fun. But you don't take durability or experience loss after a PvP death, and you don't lose money or items to the attacker. Nor does the attacker gain anything from killing you (unless it's honor if you weren't a gray target).

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, PvP, Leveling

Blizzard on griefing: deal with it.


Drysc responded strongly to some QQ over at the forums when a poster from Kil'jaeden -- a PvP realm -- ranted about being griefed by high level characters while leveling up. Drysc's uncompromising response? Get some friends and fight back. He reasons that if players roll on a PvP server, they should expect to be griefed as part of the leveling process. It's the same philosophy that has prevented Blizzard from allowing character transfers from PvE to PvP realms. It really only makes sense. If players roll on a PvP server, they shouldn't complain about players from the opposing faction taking advantage of the fact that they're flagged for PvP.

As Drysc explains, "the rules of war are based around attacking when the odds are in your favor". This could mean when opponents outnumber you, outlevel you, when you're low in health and/or if you're engaged with multiple mobs... the question isn't whether it's honorable or fair. It's war. In a PvP server, everything is fair game. There are no rules, and players certainly shouldn't bother sending tickets to GMs asking for any help (or sympathy). This should probably be common sense, but Drysc's somewhat provocative response is something of a surprise -- to many players a welcome one. While I'm all for etiquette (ganking a fisherman is just plain rude) and a personal sense of honor, players who roll on a PvP server know what they signed up for. Shape up or ship out -- character transfers, after all, are just a click away.

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

Breakfast Topic: Gankster Poll


I always roll on PvP servers. I don't know why, but I just don't feel comfortable on a PvE server. There's just something exhilarating about always looking over your shoulder to see where the next attack may be coming from. Since there is such a strong division between Alliance and Horde, PvP just seems natural. Sure, I get ganked, but I can hold my own.

When I'm soloing, I very rarely take advantage of PvP in the environment. I'm usually too busy leveling or grinding for cash to start a land war. I've even been known to help out an ally in distress. About the only time I attack unprovoked in the environment is when there is a quest monster close by that I need to fight.

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Filed under: Polls, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Breakfast Topics, Factions

Breakfast Topic: Should there be honor in PvP?

And by honor I don't mean the honor-as-currency system that's currently in the game -- I mean a sense of personal honor as in, there are things you make a conscious decision to avoid doing just as a moral gesture.

I thought of this recently after a truly miserable losing streak in Arathi Basin. I wound up in three consecutive matches with a full complement of 15 Alliance players to 7 or 8 Horde (with both sides being PuG's, mind you). Being out-numbered and out-gunned sucks no matter what, but it's made immeasurably worse in places like Arathi Basin and EOTS due to the dwindling number of sites you'll have to rez when your side is being utterly destroyed. There was one particularly awful game where the Alliance decided to see how much honor they could get from us before the inevitable 4 or 5-cap ensuring their victory, and simply zerged us in the graveyard as we rezzed (or tried to). The feeling was made worse by knowing, having also played Alliance in BG's, that Horde would almost certainly have done the same thing had the situation been reversed. PvP is the subject of a lot of emotional dicussion in the WoW community as a result of situations like these, and I think we can all agree that it's not the losses that drive you nuts so much as knowing that the game is full of places and times where no amount of strategy or skill will keep you alive.

There are a lot of things in PvP that I just don't like being a part of.
I don't attack fellow Druids unless I'm attacked first (yeah, I know it sounds crazy, but a surprising number of Druids subscribe to this). I don't join in when an enemy player is obviously being dog-piled. I don't /spit on opposing players or do other rude emotes, and I don't participate in griefing. There's not much about WoW's PvP system that's really all that fair to begin with, especially when compared to games more explicity designed around PvP combat, but in the back of my mind there's still that notion that your opponent should at least have a sporting chance. I risk being called a hopeless carebear for this statement, but I think "honorable kills" are a lot more enjoyable when there's a measure of actual honor involved.

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Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Breakfast Topics, Battlegrounds, Arena

Forum post of the day: Flying mounts in the old world


I was thrilled when Blizzard announce that the Burning Crusade would usher in flying mounts. Then we found out that we would only be able to use flying mounts in Outland, since Blizzard had not rendered some areas of the game. Lalia of Icecrown suggested that flying mounts should be allowed in the old world, just with a lowered ceiling.

The biggest objection to this idea was the possibility of sky-ganking. Ganking however is a fact of life on a PvP server. I try to avoid going to Azeroth whenever possible, partly because it takes so long to get from place to place. Sure it would take a great deal of coding, but I would love to see this explored further.

If nowhere else, flying should be an option in Moonglade. That way Druids could try out their fantastic flying skills as soon as they get them.

Do you think we should be able to fly in Azeroth?

Filed under: Druid, Blizzard, Mounts, Forums

Do summoning stones need neutral guards?

I play on RP servers only, but when they first came out, I tried an RP-PvP server for a while. I kept plugging away at it till I got to my mid thirties and finally gave up. Ever since then it's seemed to me that players on PvP servers are people who like their game to be extra difficult, and they don't mind if that means they have to suffer through the kind of situations that would submerge a "normal" gamer in intolerable frustration. They just accept that leveling up means doing lots and lots and lots of ghost runs, because other high-level characters will gank you and they will camp your corpse, and there's not much you can do about it. That's just the cost of being elite, to them -- having gone through it, it's as though they feel baptized by fire.

That's why I'm always surprised when a player from a PvP server asks for some sort of help from Blizzard with such frustrating situations. A blood elf hunter named Arkdemon is asking for neutral guards at all summoning stones -- apparently he's had trouble getting to his instance when there's a bunch of PvP going on there. But isn't that the whole point? Isn't PvP on a PvP server supposed to get in the way of PvE stuff, just like all the other struggles these players go through leveling up? The fact that you can effectively conquer a summoning stone, raid entrance or otherwise important spot on a PvP server is the whole reason people play there. If you take away this sort of challenge, or nerf it until it's not so serious a problem for people who just wanna PvE that night, then what's the point of even having a PvP server to begin with? (Zul'Aman is a possible exception to this rule, since it's so much more accessible to the Horde than the Alliance, but even in that case, a number of hardcore PvPers cried out how much they hate the addition of guards there.)

Bornakk seems to agree with me for the most part, but he mentions that Blizzard will indeed add guards (or indeed do whatever they want) if they feel it is necessary. What's your opinion?

Filed under: PvP, Instances, Forums

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