Last night, the WoW Insider arena team stepped into battle for the first time on the arena tournament realms, and it was immediately apparent that things were going to be quite different from our experiences on the tournament test realms.
For starters, there were way fewer people. I also noticed that, contrary to my expectations that everyone shelling out an extra $20 to play here would be a hardcore arena-goer, there were many people on just to have fun. General chat was full of people who didn't know where to go, how to allocate their talent points, and even people who hadn't formed teams yet!
Still, despite the fact the vendor areas had a drastically reduced population, the queues were amazingly short, as Adam points out. Often, I was reading that my team had joined the queue at the same time I was clicking to enter the battle. Another thing that I find curious is that, unlike our horrible experiences against tree after tree on the TTR, in our fourteen games, we did not come across one tree. Sure, we fought a couple teams with druids healing, but none of them were rocking tree form. Our own resto, Amanda Dean, even opted away from tree.
Actually, each of us chose specs or even classes that were out of our main comfort zones. For me, I chose a warlock, and although I have a decent amount of experience with 70 warlocks, I don't have nearly as much as I'd like. Besides which, my buttons were tricky to find in a panic.
I did enjoy playing around with Seed of Corruption and Unstable Affliction though. There's nothing more entertaining than slapping unstable onto a healer, knowing they will immediately cleanse it, and watching it pop. Continuously draining the last bits of mana from the paladin that Adam was assaulting to keep said paladin from healing also had fun written all over it.
Are you participating in the arena tournament? If so, are you in it to win it, or are you having fun gearing up and exploring new classes, specs, and team combinations?