Oct 202008
 

Lots of us have encountered this scene in the battlegrounds (BGs:) There’s the Pally, let’s start working on him. I’tll take awhile, but…. WTF!?! (appear at spirit healer)

About That Squishing Noise…

Yes, right now is the time of the Retribution Paladin. They’re lean, mean, squishing machines laying waste to anyone who stands in their way. I don’t play a Pally, my 40 is collecting dust right now, but I’ve been on the receiving end of a few of them in the BGs. It’s not bad if I can land a dismantle and they don’t bubble, but otherwise? I’ve never been slaughtered quite so quickly.

Not that I know what I’m doing, but sheesh.

I’m of two minds on this, especially for long time players. For ages Pallies have been underpowered in some areas and the subject of much complaining from their fans (and which class hasn’t?) so it’s kinda cool that they are now the destruction/murder machine of choice. On the other hand, since I play a Rogue… 😉

My kid has been playing Paladins and Warriors since the original beta, claims they are his favorite classes, and has complained about their damage and abilities for as long as he’s been playing them. I tease him about being a masochist, since those are his classes of choice and their damage has traditionally been …lacking. I’ve also been kidding him about how he must hate the current situation with the Ret. Pally running roughshod over everything.

Word has it that in the Wrath of the Lich King beta test characters were balanced for level 80, but that too little testing was done at the lower levels. The call from dead and envious players, since the 3.0 patch on the 14th, has been heard and the official word is that the nerf is coming (which will make my kid happy. I think. )

Supposedly the nerf is going to clip the burst damage, but will leave longer term DPS about the same. We’ll see. Buffs and nerfs (and patches) usually have their fair share of unintended side-effects.

So What’s the Word?

This post pretty much covers what the fuss is about:

Retribution Paladins: Fair and Balanced – So I tried my hand as a Retribution Paladin this weekend. I had heard all the complaints about how overpowered Retribution was at the moment, so I thought I would get some first hand experience for myself. …

WoWinsider notes the the coming changes are aimed at PvP Paladins and will leave PvE pretty much (in theory) unchanged. It also has a Ret build for PvE types. I’m going to log into my rust covered Pally right now and play with them for a few.

Patch 3.0.2 primer for Retribution Paladins – Retribution deals so much pain that we’ve sent the rest of player base running to Ghostcrawler crying for a nerf. And we’re getting nerfed. To the ground. Don’t panic. The changes are really, mostly aimed at PvP Paladins — okay, …

Movie time – Pally testing from the 3.02 patch:

Mp 3.0.2 patch paladin retribution Overpowered ? – Category: PvP Summary: My paladin testing out patch 3.0.2 and retribution paladins are pretty overpowered. *…

Here’s a good analysis of the Ret Paladin from Blessings of Kings:

Are Retribution Paladins Overpowered? – Half the challenge of playing a Ret paladin is actually getting to melee range. It’s not like Retribution can Charge or Stealth or Death Grip. If a player lets a Ret paladin get in range, she has already lost half the battle. …

Zuggy (a hardcore PvPer) has some blue posts on Blizzard’s thoughts about the incoming nerfs:

Retribution Paladin Nerfs Incoming – There’s no denying that retribution paladins are insanely overpowered and fortunately (or unfortunately depending…) the nerf stick was officially confirmed earlier this evening. While there are some needed changes to the class to …

And SpoonCraft has details on some of the specific nerfs:

Retribution Paladin Changes Coming Soon (Oct. 17th) – As I stated yesterday, we are happy with Ret’s PvE damage and sustatined damage in PvP, but were concerned that the burst damage in PvP could be too high. We discussed this for literally hours yesterday, which was certainly not the …

So what are your thoughts on the Retribution Pallies and their current or upcoming states?

Aug 172008
 

Twinking is the fine art of taking your character to levels far beyond what he/she should be able to do at any given level. For example, a Rogue twink, at 19, with 2,000 HP? It’s been done.

The [tag-tec]Warsong Gulch[/tag-tec] Battleground (Capture the Flag) has a level 10-19 bracket. Naturally one wants to be level 19, otherwise rapid doom will happen. Then one needs that little edge over the other 19s…

AzerothNow.com has a killer twinking guide for those level 19 Rogues bent on mayhem and slaughter in Warrsong Gulch (and maybe a duel or three.)

So you’ve done your dailies - everyday, you’ve cleared Heroics and Karazhan for Badges until your eyes bleed, maybe you’re even utterly tired of farming Illidan every week or wiping on Kil’Jaeden. But what now? Level another character? Cancel your subscription until Wrath?

Well, I have your solution: why not create a lvl 19 Twink Rogue? But what is a lvl 19 twink Rogue, you may ask. The simple explanation is that they are characters with the best possible gear for their level (including enchants), whose purpose is PvP, and their playground is the 10-19 bracket of Warsong Gulch Battlegrounds.

Here’s the rest: The Ultimate Guide to Lvl 19 Rogue Twinking

edit: A commenter points us to his twinking guides and I may just make use of his level 39 Warlock guide. Very cool. WoW Twink Guide: 39 Affliction Warlock

Arathi Basin Premade, for the Lose!

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Aug 052008
 

Played a few [tag-tec]Arathi Basin[/tag-tec] Battleground games last night. Won a couple, lost a couple, and won one in about 2 minutes.

It seems that the Ally side had come in with a premade group, looking to lose! This was a new one to me, though I’m sure you’ve seen it before. (A premade is a team formed before the game starts, generally running Ventrilo, and with an addon that allows them to join as a team.)

The idea is to get in, lose as quickly as possible, get the mark and get out. Rinse and repeat. I was told that they could get maybe 12 marks an hour that way. 2.5 hours or so and you have enough for a piece of gear. Horde side won that game in two minutes.

As for me, I find honor points harder to come by than marks. Only need 30 marks for that chest piece, but 14,500 honor points. 483.3 honor per mark. Hmmm…

I’ll also take that two minute win!

New WoW Battlegound – Northrend Battleground

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Jul 242008
 

From TenTonHammer:

The new battleground being added in Wrath of the Lich King looks to be something completely new and unique. Instead of a battleground where you have to adapt between attack and defense, this one puts you on one side and then the other. That’s right, you play a game as the attacker, and then the teams switch sides and you play it again! Whoever does better in a combined score, wins.

Sneak Peek – New Wrath of the Lich King Battleground

According to the article this is a Normandy Beach Assault, WoW style, and it even comes with seige vehicles! Send in the ninjas and man the tanks.

Now will those vehicles be driven by Taurens or lobbing Taurens? M1 Abrams Tauren Lobber? Or pour in a pile of Gnomes and lob them all?

Ok, that’s not very likely, but it’s fun to think about.

Honor awarded, marks, allowable levels (I’m guessing over 70) and what you buy with those marks seems to be an open question for now.

Naturally the losers in the crowd will try to figure out how to surrender and die to their opponents as quickly as possible and I wonder where the AFKers will hide. Maybe we can lob gnomes at them?

The whole thing looks like great fun to me.

edit: TenTonHammer also has info on the arenas and a video of the WoW devs discussing the new PvP areas. WoW PvP Preview: Dalaran / Orgrimmar Arenas and Northrend Battleground

edit:From WoWwiki – Full Northrend Map, Beta

Arathi Basin, Why Not Win?

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May 262008
 

I really don’t quite get it. [tag-tec]Arathi Basin[/tag-tec] Weekend is coming to a close and while I like the [tag-ice]battlegrounds[/tag-ice], some of the players are… annoying.

Why would anyone want to lose? A win doesn’t take much more time and you get the three marks, instead of one, and about 50% more honor. Now admittedly, my best use is probably to imitate a log and let people trip over me, but if you don’t play to win it doesn’t matter what your gear/skill level is.

So for 22 ABs over the weekend (playing Horde on Bloodscalp:)

  • 8 wins, 24 marks, average honor = 343 (Plus 419 honor from the daily AB quest)
  • 14 losses, 14 marks, 218 average honor

Seems to me that if you go in wanting to lose and working to lose you’ll send more time getting your marks and honor than by working to win.

How to lose AB (Applies to AV and WG, too):

  • Attack all five bases, preferably at the same time
  • Fight on the road, where possible, far from a flag.
  • Let the opposing player pull/kite you off the flag while the Rogue ninjas the flag (or backstabs you while the other Rogue ninjas the flag.)
  • Don’t communicate. See attackers coming to your base? Don’t say anything!
  • Sit down and don’t participate. (AFK playng)

How to Win AB:

  • Everyone follows the game plan, don’t wander off and do your own thing.
  • Grab your closest base and keep it.
  • Grab the next two closest bases and keep them.
  • I think it’s best to get three bases in a triangle, for example: Farm, MIll, Blacksmith. That way It’s easier for each base to support the others. Alliance, of course, should do stables and farm (wink.) Stables, Smith, Mill. I like the mill more than the mine for the view advantage.
  • Defend your bases. Don’t grab a flag, cap it, and then leave. Even if just one person stays then that one person can call out enemy assaults.
  • Communicate. Call out the incoming enemy and their numbers. Rogues can spy on bases and call out defending forces.
  • Coordinate. Agree to assault one or two bases at one time, rather than five.
  • It helps a lot if you want to win.

Of course, if the other side is fielding a well-geared, skilled pre-made, the winning is going to be rough. But then, why can’t that pre-made be on your side?

If the other side is all on the same Vent channel and no one on your side has heard of Ventrilo and none of them can type, then it’s going to be hard to win. :)

Battlegrounds, PVP, and Stuff Like That

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May 172008
 

Any Rogues out there use daggers? The well geared Rogues I see in the Battlegrounds all seem to be either swords or maces, but maybe I missed the dagger Rogues? Did the introduction or Resiliance really kill the dagger Rogue?

Anyway, on my quest for the purple gear (that’s to get epic gear in all slots) I’ve been collecting some numbers as I hack away (and mostly get hacked away) in the BGs. My impression from these is that the sides that can muster up the energy to actually communicate a plan (which the players can be bothered to participate in) will probably win. It’d be nice, too, if Bliz would/could come up with a way to discourage the AFK crowd.

Of course, the side that wins gets more honor and also gets three tokens as opposed to one.

Eye of the Storm. For those who might not know, this area combines controlling territory and capturing the flag. If one side can control three towers for long enough then they don’t need to concern themselves with the flag.

  1. 21 events
  2. Horde won 10, lost 11, but the last 7 were all wins. That was fun.
  3. Average honor per event was 190

Altarec Valley. Control territory and destroy the opponents reinforcements. Killing the head NPC of the opposing side will also result in a win.

  1. 22 events
  2. 10 wins, 12 losses
  3. Average honor (Some from AV weekend) 366

Warsong Gulch. Strictly a Capture the Flag game. I’m not such a big fan of Capture the Flag (since I suck at it :) .) Since the Horde doesn’t seem to like to plan much and since the honor isn’t great I think it’ll be awhile before I go back. I have my 30 marks for the Gladiator leggings, so I’m done with WG for now. Maybe at the end of the Purple Gear quest. Besides, I seem to get more kills in the other areas!

  1. 17 events
  2. 6 wins, 11 losses
  3. Average honor = 123 (all of this was on WG weekend)

Arathi Basin. That’s next on the list and I’ll probably start putting my head under the Pally’s axe this evening. I’ll post numbers when I get them.

Battlegrounds PvP with Green Gear

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May 162008
 

So how else goes one get that purple gear, short of raids or that 0.000001% chance world drop? Short answer: [tag-tec]Battlegrounds[/tag-tec] and Arenas, or spend the rest of your life grinding for that exalted rep with several factions or grinding Badges of Justice from the appropriate instances.

Dinged 70 not so long ago and I’ve been spending lots of time in the various battlegrounds, on the purple gear quest. My gear is mostly green with a couple of blues that dropped of the Auction House.

The picture of a green geared Rogue sneaking up and attacking that well geared Druid with the ungodly HP number is rather amusing, isn’t it? Do it all the time. When I get lucky there’s someone else around who’ll help out before he eats me.

And don’tcha just love the various fear spells? Not. At least, when it’s not me casting them!

I’m finally starting to feel a little less newbish, but let’s face it, going up against well geared players who’ve been doing this for a long time is … problematic. It usually results in a quick squishing. Fortunately, I’m playing a Rogue and stealth is wonderful. The well placed cheap shot is a big help. I get some kills, but the died number is usually the larger number.

I figure that my best use to this point is in being something for people to stumble over on their way to whatever goal is on the current battleground.

Is it fun? I’m having a blast. I’m on the Horde side and we win often enough when the “we must lose” crowd is elsewhere. I assume the alliance side is the same. It gets interesting when both sides want to win, though I’ll admit that a win in 10-15 min is better than one in 45. Any win is better than a loss, even though it might not be honor efficient.

Now I’m going to go and trip someone…

Teamwork in the BattleGrounds

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May 162008
 

Found an interesting post on teamwork in the battlegrounds that I agree with totally. From WoWbasic.com:

One of the things that bothers not only me, but many others is the lack of teamwork within the battlegrounds these days. A good example of this was an Alterac Valley that I was participating in only this morning. While trying to capture the Dun Baldar South Bunker I was fighting a Paladin who had been attacking a Warlock from our team. This in its self is nothing unusual, but what happened during the fight was. While fighting the Paladin the Warlock ran behind a pillar and stopped fighting him. In addition a holy priest came in and stood there while I was being chewed up by the Paladin and the Archers at the same time. Not one heal nor any help with dispensing the Paladin led to my ultimate death right as I killed the Paladin.

Here’s the rest: Teamwork in the battlegrounds – A lost strategy

For myself, I’ll jump in when I can and help out. I like winning these things and teamwork is a big step in that direction. And we do win these things when we can get enough people to participate.

More tips on Battlegrounds PvP and teamwork

Some of these are Alliance specific, but the thoughts apply just as much to Horde.

Teamwork in the battlegrounds – A lost strategy – While there are still a good many of us who play by the rules of good teamwork wins Battlegrounds there are yet more who believe that it is like solo questing where you do not need be helped nor help others. …

Battlegrounds! You Lose! – Alliance: everyone just wants the marks and honor with as little team work as possible. most of them travel alone. Buffs, yeah once in a blue moon before the battle starts. Heals, Ha forget it. Sometimes they will start as a group and …

Taking It to the Horde! Tips for Ret PvP in Battlegrounds – Teamwork is vital to being successful in Warcraft battlegrounds. How does this apply to the Ret Paladin? Well first off the Paladin as a class is group-oriented. Blessings and Auras do not diminish in power as you extend them to more …