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Encrypted Text: Rogue celebrities and the lack thereof

blade's edge
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 suggestions you'd like to see covered here.

The world has an obsession with celebrity. A person can be famous simply for being famous. We want to wear what they wear, we want to drive what they drive, and we want to have what they have. The endorsement of a celebrity is all that it takes to instill confidence and to engender trust. Celebrities have become the perfect image that we shape our lives after. Every culture has its model members that create the standard by which the others are judged.

Rogues are running out of celebrities. While the old joke about how "the best rogues are the unknown ones" is clever, it's not accurate. Every class needs avatars to represent it on the global scale. Every class needs intelligent theorycrafters to curate class knowledge and flashy all-stars to exploit that knowledge. Rogues used to have heroes that we could stand behind, but their count is fading fast. Can you name the best rogue in the world right now, in either PvP or PvE? Can you even name anyone in the top 10? I couldn't either.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: The evolution of rogue PvP

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 suggestions you'd like to see covered here.

During the lull between WoW expansions, I've been trying out a few action real-time strategy games like League of Legends and Dota 2. One of the things I've been learning about A-RTS games is that there are several different roles that the characters can fill. While WoW typically revolves around the tank/healer/DPS trinity, these PvP-only games have much more diversity.

For example, there's the nuker role, which focuses on quick bursts of damage, and the disabler role, which focuses on controlling enemies to set up a kill. If you look between the lines, some of these roles are present in WoW PvP as well. Rogues have been relied upon to provide the stuns and snares to control targets, as well as to provide the burst needed to eliminate our enemies. We've worn a lot of hats over the past few years, and we've found ways to excel in each niche.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Arena teams hit 3k


A pair of 3v3 teams from the US Bloodlust Battlegroup -- aka BG9 and reputed to be the best US Battlegroup -- recently hit the 3000 rating, the hard cap for Arena ratings. A few other teams following closely behind at 2953 and 2949, making it likely that they, too, will hit 3000 before Season 6 is over. This has caused a bit of a stir in the Arena community, although it's not entirely unexpected considering all the changes that had been made to the Arena system since the launch of Wrath of the Lich King. In fact, some had predicted that this season would see teams hit 3k legitimately (unscrupulous win-traders have hit the ceiling before).

The two teams, big furious joke and sup fresh our turn baby, an RLS (Rogue, Warlock, Shaman) and a RetPR (Retribution Paladin, Priest, Rogue) respectively, are composed of members who have performed consistently well through different Arena seasons. The Rogue of big furious joke, Nutzz, is rumored to be the legendary Neilyo, who grew to infamy with his popular series of PvP videos. Its Shaman, Douja, formerly played pro for Team Pandemic. The other team's Paladin, Euneek, topped his Battlegroup last season using the Holyplay (Ret Pally, Priest, Shaman) comp. None of these guys are slouches and aren't likely to have win traded the way teams in the past have in order to reach the hard cap.

Their recent achievement has brought the current Arena system under scrutiny, as Blizzard has stated before that they never intended for players to reach the rating ceiling. Considering the system has undergone numerous changes in the past few seasons, it's not unreasonable to think that it's due for another overhaul. Regardless of the system, a 3k rating is an incredible achievement. Congratulations on jobs well done.

[Thanks to cigarillo for the heads up!]

Filed under: PvP, Arena

The Art of War(craft): How WoW as an eSport can actually work


If you're even moderately interested in Arenas, I hope you caught the live stream of MLG Orlando yesterday, hosted by GotFrag TV. The stream quality was much better than the one from the Worldwide Invitational, and it was truly entertaining, um... television. A lot of video entertainment is available through the web these days, and GotFrag TV has been providing topnotch coverage of the Major League Gaming World of Warcraft Arena tournament series. As a student of Arenas, I've found the coverage to be extremely fun and educational. This is competition at its highest level, where players actually get paid, or win money, for playing. And just like any sport, there are a few special elements that make it interesting to watch.

The stars

Every sport has its stars. You have athletes like Tiger Woods being the face of golf, or Kobe Bryant being the guy you either love or hate in basketball (for the record, I've been a Kobe fan since he got drafted by the Hornets in 1996), or even Maria Sharapova for tennis, who doesn't even necessarily have to win in order to be fun to watch (I mean, look at Anna Kournikova). Tournaments, when they're in a televised LAN format -- as opposed to online, such as the Blizzard-sponsored 2008 World of Warcraft Arena Tournament -- means that audiences will actually get a glimpse of the players behind the characters. Just like sports stars, these players need to have some special quality that holds the interest of fans. Let's go through a few examples.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, PvP, The Art of War(craft) (PvP), Arena

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