Infractus is the Death Knight member of Cookn by Teh Book on the Retaliation battlegroup. He is a Flawless Victor, which is usually a pretty good indicator of someone who's got their Arena head sitting right on their shoulders. Death Knights are pretty hot topics right now, seeing as most of the highest-rated teams have at least one Death Knight. Infractus was good enough to share his views on the Arena with Colosseum. Check out what he had to say after the cut. WoW Insider: What are the strongest points of operating as a Death Knight in the Arena?
Infractus: With the way burst is in Arena at the moment, survivability is high on the list. Also, the ability to peel people off your healer quite efficiently being equally as high.
WoW Insider: What's your opening strategy? What do you like to do as soon as the gate opens?
Infractus: First and foremost, I figure out what comp I'm up against. Depending on the map, I'll go behind a pillar or out of Line of Sight and wait for a good spot to open.
For example, say I'm in the Nagrand Arena with my 2s partner (a Holy Paladin named Meetsi). I try to position myself so I can get off a good Death Grip on our focus target, while letting Meetsi stay as close to the pillar as possibel so that he can heal and LOS whenever necessary.
WoW Insider: Death Knights have been called "gods among men" in some circles. It's not a matter of being "overpowered" as much as "very well tooled." What's your opinion on that?
Infractus: Death Knights are indeed a very formidable opponent due to having so many abilities to counter other players. But just like any other class ,if you don't use your abilities wisely, you'll get either yourself or someone else killed.
I would say that certain specs are probably overpowered versus certain classes. Blood being a prime example. Specced for Dancing Rune Weapon and Blood, Death Knights can annihilate anything in cloth or leather in a few Global CoolDowns, but are quite weak against mail, plate, and classes that can easily cleanse diseases.
WoW Insider: How do you work out target designation? (Does someone call it out, or is everyone on their own to figure it out?)
Infractus: Me and my partner(s) discuss what would be the best focus target, but usually the healer (Meetsi) has the final say.
WoW Insider: What do you think about the new hidden, personal rating? Does it seem to make the game better or worse to you? Do you consider the hidden rating an unfair penalty to experienced players?
Infractus: I welcome the change actually. It was never fun being high rated and fighting a team that should be near your rating, but they're leveling a new team. Winning single digit points while losing 20+ is never fun.
Only way I could say the new system was unfair to high rated players was the few players that enjoy squashing the lower rated players when leveling new teams.
WoW Insider: Did you play in previous seasons? What do you see the differences in the new season being?
Infractus: Yes, I started doing Arena in the middle of Season One on my rogue. I'm seeing a lot of parallels between S1 and S5 at the moment. From s2 through s4 healers were literally PvP tanks, as opposed to S5 where burst is significantly higher. So, healers cant just outheal 2+ dps.
WoW Insider: What's the key for your composition's strategy? Are there multiple tactics you can use?
Infractus: Against double-DPS it's just about surviving and killing one of them before they kill one of you. Against Healer/DPS, depending on the comp, you can target the squishiest target and throw a good chain of CC on their partner. That's usually a win. HOJ, Hungering Cold, Strangulate, Belf Silence, not particularly in that order.
WoW Insider: What are you trying to improve?
Infractus: If me and my partner hadn't already been playing together for a long time I would say we were trying to improve on communication and team work, but we've known and played together for a very long time so we can pretty much guess what the other person is gonna do in any given situation. To be honest, I can't really think of much we need to improve on other than actually doing more Arena so we can claim the number 1 spot.
WoW Insider: A lot has been made of healers not having a strong role in Season 5. What do you think about that commentary?
Infractus: Healers are still very strong, people have just become too accustomed to healers being able to tank DPS just by spam healing. Granted, if you don't have a lot of Resilience as a healer you run the risk of getting gibbed.
WoW Insider: What are you hoping to see improved in 3.1? We've seen some changes, obviously, but there's more to come.
Infractus: Just general class balancing to be honest. I like facing a wide variety of team comps. Seeing the same comp 5 times in a row gets old.
WoW Insider: What do you think is the significant difference between an "amateur" and a "pro" Arena fighter?