The 2009 blizzard arena tournament has now been officially announced! Check out the initial blue post regarding the tournament below.
We’re pleased to announce that the 2009 World of Warcraft Arena Tournament is nearly here. Starting next week (February 17, 2009), players will be able to sign up to compete in this year’s exciting competition. The tournament will feature an online qualifier played on our special tournament realms. Top teams will proceed to their respective regional finals and compete for a chance to reach the global world championship – with cash prizes totaling over $200,000.
These realms have been outfitted with level 80 character templates and the latest epic gear from Wrath of the Lich King. As an added bonus, we have included exclusive rewards that players can earn by participating in the tournament, including an Armored Murloc in-game pet. Top teams will also contend for a chance to achieve the “Vanquisher” title for their live characters.
If you would like to demonstrate your arena prowess, or simply want a chance to earn the exclusive loot, please check back next week for more details – including eligible countries – and register!
Brief blue post by Ghostcrawler regarding resilience.
I don’t think I have ever said “wait and see” though it gets quoted a lot, so maybe I did. I have always said that everyone pretty much agrees that resilience will make things better and the question is by how much.
Resilience is our primary reward for PvP gear. It is what keeps PvP gear from being uber in PvP gear and also discourages players from using PvE gear to PvP (more on this in a sec). Part of the Arena design is basically that if you win it gives you access to gear that lets you win more (that is actually the PvE design too if you think about it). If we give away resilience too readily, then the Arena rewards don’t feel as valuable.
We know a lot of players are wearing PvE gear right now in Arenas. That is happening for a couple of reasons:
First, they have that gear. We made the early raiding content very approachable, but we also gave players access to it long before the Arena season started. In early BC it felt like the PvP epic gear was far easier to get than the PvE epic gear, which sent a strange message to a lot of players from which not all have recovered. So in that respect it is nice to be able to say again that PvE is a valid path to epic gear. Unfortunately, we probably went too extreme in the other direction and now the “welfare epics” are from Naxx. (I also want to add that badges and Archavon are great sources for PvP gear without you having to PvP, and Strand and Wintergrasp give a lot of honor if you want to PvP but don’t want to Arena. There is also a lot of good starter PvP gear out there but it is blue and some players hate the thought of taking off their purple gear from a few seasons ago. But I digress.)
Second, when nobody has resilience gear, it allows for a strategy where you can just burst players down in a couple of GCDs. Since the attacks never take much damage, resilience isn’t highly valued. What will happen is that once some players start to get resilience, everyone will have to. Once the healer (to use an example) can’t be destryoed in a couple of GCDs, the attackers are in a very weak position from the rest of the healer’s team. It’s an arms race in essence. Once one person putson their survival gear, everyone has to.
Now I do realize in the past this wasn’t true of every spec, especially rogues, though we’ve tried to avoid that problem this time. I also realize that some players think they die too easily without resilience or will die too easily even with resilience. I’m not trying to wave away all of that feedback. The question was whether resilience was valuable (or perhaps even too valued) in PvP.
Goals and you.
If a person is a casual gamer than they have to realize that they can either be mediocre at a million things or amazing at one thing. Setting realistic goals as a casual gamer will keep a person upbeat moreso than trying to do everything all the time like their 100 hours of playtime a week friend is. I personally get to play video games 10-15 hours a week. Keep in mind I have a 360, a Wii, college classes and a baby and wife to worry about. So how do I play
WoW and still have fun? Goals. With 10 hours a week do I expect to be in a 2400 rating team with Season X gear and all the ladies I want, no I don’t. What I expect is to be a solid player and an asset to a team. So what if I’m rated 1800, I may wait a couple of extra weeks for my chest piece, but I still got it. Hardcore gamers in WoW are just like billionaires in RL, they both have too much time, look way better than you or me, and laugh at everyone below them. Don’t let this dishearten you, realize that you don’t live in a basement, have friends, and see the sun on a daily basis. Setting reasonable goals is the only way a casual gamer or casual anything will ever feel a sense of accomplishment.
Cookie Cutters are OK!
I love to experiment with ridiculous specs and strategies that will probably never work, but are a blast to play. However, if you are on time restraints working out the kinks of these ideas will take forever(almost take me literally there). Don’t be afraid to use cookie cutter builds, they are cookie cutter builds because they work. You can be assured they work because someone with an infinite(take me almost literally again) time on there hands has tested them a ridiculous amount of times.
The term cookie cutter should not have a negative connotation to it, it should have a safe productive connotation to it. Look at it this way a Christmas tree, snowman, or jackolantern cookie cutter is there for a reason; people use them, they work, and they fit a specific purpose, the only difference between real cookie cutters and arena ones is that the real ones taste good!
Forums are our friends.
Every forum post whether it be from some idiot complaining about needed nerfs or the super elite ZUG himself has something to be learned from it. If nothing else read the guides for your class that Blizzard stickies on their forums. I promise they will enlighten you. Unlike fractions forums really are your friends.
Practice makes near perfect.
Lastly, practicing is the most important learning tool there is. Losing or winning a player of any game can learn from practice. At the end of every match win or loss, don’t focus on the other teams gear, or l337ness level, but on the strategies used and the class/spell combos used against you. A crappy geared player who knows how to play can beat a well geared player who doesn’t.
I end with a goal.
I will end this guide with one goal for every player who reads this guide. The next time you lose an arena match do two things. Don’t blame your teamate(s) and then ask them how you could help them win. I hope this guide helps at least one casual gamer, if it does then I have accomplished my gal in writing it.
Season 4 Ends, Season 5 Start Date Announced
We wanted to remind everyone that Arena season 4 is coming to a close. During next Tuesday’s maintenance, all arena teams, as well as ratings, will be wiped and arena charter NPCs disabled. Thus, arena points will, unfortunately, not be rewarded for rated games played this week.
The next Arena season will begin on December 16th, and once that happens players at level 70 will be able to participate in rated matches against level 70 opponents and gain Arena points for item purchases but will not count towards the end of season rewards. At the same time, level 80 players will be able to compete in rated arena matches where they can gain arena points which can be used to purchase level 80 arena gear, as well as compete for end-of-season rewards. Additionally, players at level 70 will continue to be able to play skirmish Arena matches against other level 70 opponents even after Wrath of the Lich King launches. It’s also important to note that two new skirmish brackets (71-75, 76-80) will be available for players who wish to hone their Arena skills while leveling in Northrend.
Probably one of the most common match ups you are going to be facing in arena. Also, one of the more difficult teams. The strategy my team employs here is fairly simply, just train the druid. Any druid based 2v2 team’s success or failure will be largely determined by the ability of the druid. As the rogue your strategy is very easy.
Rogue’s Arena Tactics
You have one goal and one goal alone here, slay the druid. The druid and warrior are going to do everything they can to prevent you from getting to / staying on the druid. So there will be a carefully balanced dance between you and your druid to make certain…
- the warrior is crowd controlled as much as possible
- the druid is prevented from crowd controlling you
As the rogue you’ll be in charge of eliminating much of the CC. For this reason it’s important you do not turn and gouge or hemo the warrior (unless you have no CP on the druid anyway), you always want to try to maintain you combo points on the druid. Always having a few combo points on the druid will be a crucial element in your victory.
- Deadly throw the druid to prevent entangling roots and cyclone
- If the druid is attempting to run away and drink you can use slice and dice to bring them back into combat, even if you are a long ways away. This will only last for a few seconds though, so make sure you get to the druid quickly.
Druid’s Arena Tactics
The druid’s job here is incredibly more difficult than the rogues. For your rogue to have any success on the druid you absolutely must nail your crowd control rotations and healing / spell interrupts. These include:
- Your cyclone, root, feral charge, bash combo will be essential in keeping the warrior off of your rogue. Learing to use this fluidly and throughout an arena match is a must.
- A bit more on the advanced side of things, at least from the perspective of timing is concerned. You’ll want to always be watching for when you think you can get a kill on the druid. If your rogue just cannot catch the druid you may need to throw a cyclone on him to allow your rogue the time to catch up.
- Consider using cyclone as a means to stop the druids CC rotation, druids heals, immune his HoTs if he’s fully HoT’d himself, interrupt heals with feral charge, etc.
This is NOT an easy combo for rogue druid, not by any stretch. If we are able to go 50 and 50 against high rated teams then we’re feeling pretty good. The warrior’s mobility and overall damage output are much higher than the rogues, but the rogue can level the playing field through well timed use of crowd controls.
Above all, do not panic. This is a very slow and methodical match. You probably are not going to bomb the druid down in a KS, you’ll likely just need to beat him out of mana and keep the pressure up until you’ve slowly one of the match. Stay focused, stay on the druid and nail your CCs. if you can remember these few points you’ll be well on your way to victory.
Looking for more rogue / druid strats? Check out the complete Rogue / Druid 2v2 Arena Strategy!
New change to the arena match making system just announced earlier this evening.
There will be a new, persistent rating system that should keep top-rated players facing other top-rated players, regardless of the bracket in which their current team sits. We’ll have more information to come on this soon. (source)
Obviously not much is known about this new “persistent rating system”, how it will work, what the parameters will be, etc. That said, it’s great to see Blizzard acknowledging yet another pretty big issue within the game and actively pursuing a solution.
It seems like there are a variety of potential problems with a system like this. For example, I consider myself a top arena player, but I often help out my less skilled or casual guildmates and friends to level up their teams and get points.
Can all of these factors be included in the equation to truly make a viable system? Probably so, at least to a degree where you aren’t going to have 2000+ rated players playing teams around the 1500 bracket.
Wow…simply wow, I cannot believe what I’m reading. Bornakk shocked everyone with this…
We had hoped that the introduction of some new Honor rewards in the upcoming patch would give players a great opportunity to spend any of their remaining Honor. However, many players would still be surprised by an Honor and token reset as it isn’t something we’ve done in the past. As such, we’ve decided to not reset Honor or tokens upon the release of Wrath of the Lich King. Players who save their Honor will be able to spend it on level 80 rewards, although those rewards will be significantly more expensive than their level 70 counterparts.
This is just seems insane to me, especially after Blizzard already officially announced the honor points and tokens WOULD reset, citing several valid reasons for this change. I agreed with much of their reasoning and really do not understand why they would choose to pull a complete 180 and decide to now not reset.
Especially considering many players have already gone out and purchased other honor items they might not have upon the early announcement that points were resetting. Major /fail for Blizzard on this one.
This afternoon Tigole calmed the fears of many players who thought they were going to lose their Brutal Gladiator titles to triple Retribution Paladin teams by announcing that the end of Season 4 would happen on the day that the 3.0 Patch hits live servers.
We’ve reevaluated certain aspects of how the arena system and current arena season will be affected during both the next content patch, and the launch of Wrath of the Lich King. For starters, the current arena season will end in respect to the ladder upon the release of our next major patch. What this means is, we’ll be taking a snapshot of the current season’s ladder just before the realms are taken down for patch maintenance, and our normal process will commence to determine who is eligible for the end-of-season rewards.
Teams and ratings will not be wiped at that time, and will carry forward allowing players to earn points each week (and buy gear) until the launch of the expansion on November 13th. Almost immediately before Wrath of the Lich King releases, all arena teams as well as ratings will be wiped and arena charter NPCs disabled.
So there you have it, no need to worry.
Another job well done from Blizzard here for the new Dalaran Arena map. This map is located within the sewers of Dalaran and Northrend. Much like the new Orgrimmar arena map, dalaran includes a much more dynamic and intuitively designed map.
- Multiple levels of elevation
- Line of sight positions located both in the inner and outer rings of the arena
- Dynamic water jet that periodically fires in the middle of the map. This can be used as an LoS position.
- Generally speaking it’s a very small map, should make for more aggressive and high intensity game play.
I know the video is kind of short / bad…I’ll try to get a more complete video up tomorrow.
One word…amazing. Simply amazing. Blizzard has really out done themselves with this one. Let’s face it arenas currently are pretty boring, at least the map designs. The new orgrimmar arena is just stacked with really cool stuff.
- 2 pillar sets, 2 pillars per set. Only 2 of the pillars are up at a given time.
- Ability to stand on pillar and ride it to the top.
- 2 Fire walls that come up periodically and span the middle of the map.
- 2 Shadow sights (as expected)
This is the type of dynamic arena I’ve been waiting for. There’s so much going on in the arena, it adds a whole new level of difficulty to the map. I really hope we see changes like this retrofitted to the old areas as well as additional dynamic and exciting arena maps.