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Posts with tag season-1

Hearthstone test season 1 ending January 2

Hearthstone Community Manager Keganbe chimed in to remind everyone that the first Ranked Play season will be ending soon. After the season ends, everyone's rank will be reset to 25 and the climb to the top will begin anew. We saw the fall (or at least, rebalancing) of mages in the inaugural season of Hearthstone. Test Season 2 will begin on January 2nd. We'll start seeing alternate card backs and golden heroes soon!
Hearthstone Test Season 1 End Reminder

Thank you for helping us test our very first Ranked Play season! This season is intended to conclude on January 2nd, so be sure to wrap up your climb up the ladder before that date. Once the season is over, everyone's ranking will be reset back to Rank 25, and Test Season 2 will begin!

During the course of this first test season we've gotten some very valuable feedback and data from you regarding the new Ranked Play system. We greatly appreciate your efforts in helping us test this updated Play mode, and we look forward to seeing your future feedback in Test Season 2. In the future, once the Test Seasons have concluded, we look forward to adding our Ranked Play rewards: Alternate card backs and Golden Heroes. We can't move on without your help!

Be sure to continue reporting bugs on our Bug Report forum here, and give us your feedback on Ranked Play mode on our general discussion forum here.

Thank you for helping us test Ranked Play mode!

The highest rank I've been able to reach so far is rank 8. How have your experiences in Hearthstone been? Which decks have you been using to climb the ranks? Personally, one month per season is too short. I think each season should be expanded to at least 2-3 months at most. I feel as though it takes quite a bit of time for constructed (play mode) players to get to their appropriate ranking.

Filed under: Hearthstone Insider

Arena Junkies looks at some Gladiator statistics

You have to be real careful about how you put together statistics. As Gregg Easterbrook said, "Torture numbers, and they'll confess to anything." So, grain of salt, people. That being said, Arena Junkies has put up a pretty interesting compilation of numbers. They took a look at their (fairly substantial) membership, and figured out the approximate class makeup of each Arena season's Gladiators.

The results aren't exactly a surprise, which supports the analysis's validity. Warlocks -- once the Arena juggernaut to the sounds of much QQ -- have lost 8% of their dominance in the Gladiator ranks. By comparison, Rogues have picked up 6.5%. Druids are the big winners, though. Only 7.5% of Season 1's gladiators were druids, compared to 16% of Season 3's. And yeah.

There's a lot of metagame interpretation that could be done regarding these numbers. Melee have slowly risen in power over the span of three seasons, and Paladins -- once the bubbling unstoppable -- have really dropped in performance. Druids used to be unremarkable, but now the "science" of Line-of-Sight and Mobility has taken the day.

Arena Junkies promise to further update their analysis when the Hall of Fame is updated for Season 3. But I agree with Tyveris: I think the current sample is indicative, and we're not going to see any huge differences between these numbers and those.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, News items, PvP, Classes, Arena

The inevitable loss

Around every 4th of July I reread Michael Shaara's The Killer Angels, which is a book about the battle of Gettysburg during the American Civil War. There's an early passage about the Southern general James Longstreet's unease over the Confederate push north to Pennsylvania: He had never believed in this invasion...He did not believe in offensive warfare when the enemy outnumbered you and outgunned you and would come looking for you anyway if you waited somewhere on your own ground. Longstreet, one of the finest military minds of the age, spends much of the subsequent bloody fight knowing that Union forces had a terrain advantage impossible to overcome.

There's been a lot written about battleground strategy (particularly Alterac Valley) but I think all of us have known the sinking feeling you get when you realize that your side isn't going to win. Some causes of failure are relatively easy to pinpoint; starting a battleground with a heavy numbers or healing disadvantage often seals the fate of a match. And of course the collective quality of a team's gear will always play a role; people in Season 4 are unlikely to lose to those in Season 1.

All other things being equal, what I find most fascinating are the matches -- PuG versus PuG, or premade versus premade -- where the battle can swing either way depending entirely on each team's degree of foresight and strategy. Rarely, single players can sometimes decide the outcome; I once saw a protection paladin in a 2-cap versus 2-cap Eye of the Storm prevent the opposing side from taking any flags by parking himself in the middle and simply taking forever to die, and one of my own favorite techniques is to suicide/harass heavily-defended nodes in Arathi Basin and EOTS while Horde quietly caps elsewhere (you'd be amazed at the number of players who prefer an easy kill over responding to "Inc!" calls elsewhere). But failure and success are usually collective and hard to pin down. How do you convince people to do the less-glamorous jobs -- defense, distraction, crowd-control -- more likely to result in a victory? How do you know when the battleground is lost for sure?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Battlegrounds

Season 2 Arena to sell for honor in Season 4

This wasn't exactly unexpected (Blizzard has, after all, already put Season 1 gear up for purchase), but Drysc has confirmed that Season 2 Arena gear-- that's the Merciless Gladiator gear-- will be available for purchase with regular honor as of Season 4.

As usual, Drysc provides a disclaimer that Blizzard may change those plans. And of course we have no idea yet when Season 4 will drop, although the usual Arena Season timing tells us that it will likely be sometime in March of this year (possibly with the release of patch 2.4, although as usual, we have no idea if the patch will come sooner or later).

But if you spent all your honor on Season 1 gear when Season 3 started, time to start saving again. Merciless Gladiator is going on sale.

Filed under: Items, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Economy, Arena

WoW, Casually: The best gear for the least play-time

Each week, Robin Torres writes WoW, Casually for the player who has 2 hours or less to play at a time.

As the title says, we're going to talk about gear today, but first, let's talk about the events for the week. Starting Friday, it's Warsong Gulch for the Call to Arms weekend. This means shorter queues for those of you (like me) who need WSG marks for purchasing gear. It also means bonus honor, but I get more honor out of Alterac Valley than I do out of WSG bonus honor weekends.

So get out there and earn some WSG marks, but please, don't waste everyone's time by fighting in the middle. You should be doing one of the following:
  1. Getting the flag: It's amazing how often the stubborn "run past everyone, get the flag and run out" tactic works. And if you die and drop the flag? Someone else has a chance to pick it up in a less defended place.
  2. Protecting the flag carrier: Heal, stun, root, sheep, kill -- do whatever you can to keep the flag carrier healthy and unmolested.
  3. Stop the other team's flag carrier: Even if you aren't a mighty DPS class, you can still do a lot to get back the flag. Root, stun, slow, etc. It's a team effort and often the best thing you can do is keep the flag carrier in place while everyone else finishes him off.

Read more →

Filed under: PvP, WoW, Casually, Battlegrounds

PvP spending questions: Value vs. Cost vs. Time

With Arena Season 3 starting today, as you know, the Season 1 weapons and armor are now available for purchase with Honor. While some people may be able to just walk up and buy everything in the store, most of us have limited points to spend, and the right way to spend them isn't clear. In my case, for example, I find myself facing a difficult choice: Should I get a Season 1 epic weapon now, then spend my arena points on one piece of Season 3 armor? Or should I continue saving up my arena points to buy the even better Season 2 epic weapon later, and then spend my honor points on some Season 1 armor now? What is the real trade-off in terms of the relative value of items, their costs, and the time I'll have available to use them?

The particular character in question is my draenei hunter that I just finished leveling about a month and a half ago. I'm having trouble finding good upgrades in any remaining quests, normal instances, or even heroics, but sometimes I still feel quite behind a lot of the other players I see in the battlegrounds and arenas. I'll probably start going to Karazhan with this character soon, but ideally I would love to be able to gear up with PvP and get into my guild's Zul'Aman raids early. I'd like to start being more competitive in Arenas as well -- sooner rather than later. At the current rate I'm going, it'll take me another two months before I have enough Arena points to spend on a Merciless Gladiator's Crossbow of the Phoenix (from Season 2). If I bought the Gladiator's Heavy Crossbow (from Season 1) with Honor today, though, would that help put me on a more even footing with other players sooner? Perhaps I would compete more effectively and gear up in other ways much faster? Or is it really worth the wait for the better weapon? (In case you're wondering, the Season 3 Crossbow requires a 1850 personal rating, so it's something I can't get without serious gear improvements.)

What sort of PvP spending quandary are you in? If you're in a situation like mine, feel free to ask your question below, and see if our readers have an reply for you. Hopefully our new commenting features will help facilitate some practical suggestions.

Filed under: Hunter, Tips, PvP, Raiding

Season 1 Prices revisited as items go on sale tomorrow

We heard a long time ago that Arena 1 sets would be purchaseable with battleground honor and marks, and it looks like tomorrow's the day-- all those marks and honor you've been saving up will be able to get you some Arena PvP gear.

We posted prices a while back as well, but just in case you missed them, here they are again, at Curse's website. The full list of prices is after the jump-- lots of people will probably be headed for the weapons, but make sure to bring lots of honor and marks. While the offhand weapons are the least pricey (at 9k honor), the marks are probably what will break people-- you need 20 Eye of the Storm marks for all the one-hand weapons, and 40 AB marks for the two handers. Librams, relics and totems are the cheapest-- only 8k honor and 10 EotS marks.

The full list is printed for your convenience after the break. Got honor? If you want to grab some of that season 1 gear tomorrow, you're gonna need it.

Read more →

Filed under: Patches, Items, Economy, PvP

WoW, Casually: The increased benefits of Battlegrounds to casual players

Each week, Robin Torres writes WoW, Casually for the player who has 2 hours or less to play at a time.

Happy Patch 2.3! I know that Blizzard gave raiders Zul'Aman, but the rest of the game really became much more casual friendly. This week we're going to talk about many of the Battleground benefits that are there for those of us with limited playtime.

First, let's talk about this weekend's Call to Arms. Eye of the Storm is the battleground giving the bonus honor this weekend. Levels 61 and up can participate in EotS and the battles are often only 15 minutes, not including queue time. Or course, one of the benefits of the Call to Arms is the reduced queue times.

I can't guarantee that the EotS queue times will be that much lower this weekend, however. The fact that Alterac Valley has recently been changed may mean that a lot of people will be trying that battleground out instead of EotS. Also, whatever battleground is in the PvP Daily Quest may affect queues as well.

Read more →

Filed under: Tips, Events, PvP, Features, WoW, Casually, Battlegrounds

Confirmed: Season 1 gear change delayed with Season 3

Drysc has confirmed that moving the Arena Season 1 gear to the honor vendor is part of the Season 3 event and has therefore been delayed along with Season 3. This means that you will be able to purchase Season 1 gear with honor on November 27th when Season 3 begins or on November 28th for European servers.

Drysc says there are technical reasons for the delay of purchasing the gear. The event that begins Arena Season 3 is "already tested and locked down" and while they have discussed releasing Season 1 to honor as per the original schedule, they have decided it is not feasible.

It was suggested that Blizzard start the event as originally scheduled on the 20th but not start Season 3 until the 27th. But Drysc responded that while it was possible, it would also make Season 3 gear available while Season 2 was still underway. "It's just not going to happen."

Do you think delaying the purchase of Season 1 gear with honor as a reasonable delay? Or do you see it as an opportunity to save up more honor for your purchases?

Filed under: News items, PvP, Forums

Prices for Arena Season 1 items revealed

As expected, Patch 2.3 will bring Arena Season 1 items down to the battleground mark market, which means that for the first time ever, you'll be able to buy Arena gear with regular battleground honor and marks (good to know-- I've been saving up all my marks for just a day such as this). And MMO Champion has delved into the PTR and come back out with prices for every piece of Gladiator gear, so now you can know exactly what to save up for on the new patch.

Almost across the board, you're going to need some EOTS marks, either 10 or 20 for most items. And you'll need to save up honor, too-- it's about eight or nine thousand for low ticket items like the Paladin's Librams and the Shaman Totems, all the way up to 25-27k for the major weapons. That's definitely not impossible, considering how easy it is to get honor in the BGs, but odds are you'll want to get EOTS bonus honor weekends on your calendar (what a coincidence-- this coming weekend is one) and plan to spend some time playing WoW on those days.

Sure, the gear's not the latest and greatest (you'll have to get a great Arena rating for that stuff), but if you like the BGs as much as I do, these are still some great items that you can pay for with the points and marks that you're already getting anyway. Oh, and we need some help at Mage, if you can manage it. Thanks.

Thanks, Boubouille!

Filed under: Patches, Items, Odds and ends, Economy, PvP

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