The Colosseum takes us inside the world of the Gladiator (Brutal, Vengeful, Merciless, Furious, and otherwise), to interview some of the top Arena fighters in the battlegroups. Our goal is to bring a better understanding of the strategy, makeup, and work that goes into dueling it out for fame, fortune, and Frostwyrms. We're especially focused on the people who play these games, to further shed light on the world of the PvP player.Furious Gladiator Euneek is one of the top Paladins in BG9. If you haven't already heard, BG9 (Bloodlust) is often considered to be one of the most competitive battlegroups in WoW. Obviously, Euneek's achievements in BG9 are that much more impressive for being in that highly skilled environment.
Euneek was kind enough to answer some questions about the new Season, the changes which are affecting Season 7, and then also how he is coping with the new season. Check out what he had to say behind the cut!
WoW.com: How do you feel the Resilience change (to reduce all damage) is affecting the overall dynamic in the Arena?
Euneek: Thus far in S7, it seems as though the Resilience change is moving in the right direction. It has slowed down the arena matches slightly. But there are still a few times where I watch people get global'd, specifically by Destro locks and Elemental shammies.
(Editor's note: Getting "global'd" refers to getting killed in about the space of a single GCD, so that you have no time to react.)
WoW.com: What do you think is significantly different in Season 7, as opposed to previous seasons?
Euneek: Aside from the obvious Resilience change, I'd have to say it's the variety of compositions that are being played that are actually successful when played well.
We have the obvious few with Rogue/Mage/Priest, but then we also have Priest/Hunter/Druid or Warrior, Warrior/Lock/Druid, variations of "Shadowcleave" and the now infamous "Zoocleave" or "Beastcleave," the comp with which I attained world first 3k with RRP, and the variations of Wizardcleaves out there.
All of these comps have their strengths and weaknesses, and playing on BG9 where there are tons of the world's best players compiled, I run into every single one of these comps every time I queue. My MMR is around 2600 to 2700 currently. This is probably by far the most diverse arena season to date and I believe it's because of Blizzard making those minor changes to balance the game as best as possible and taking steps in the right direction to achieve this.
WoW.com: There's already talk of inflated ratings, due to the way Matchmaking Rating is working. Have you felt any difference?
Euneek: Obviously, after the first two weeks, even in the first week, we saw teams jump right up to 2500+ team rating. Because of this, people have probably jumped to conclusions, saying we see a bunch of 3000+ rated teams within the first 3 weeks of this season. But, those speculations were definitely inaccurate.
This is pretty obvious on the BG9 ladder. You see tons of top caliber teams who have maintained relatively close to their same rating from last week, even after playing 50+ games with around 70% win percentages. The MMR system seems to be working fairly well. If you're doing poorly on a certain night, and lose a couple of games in a row, your MMR and TR takes a pretty big hit, even if the opposing teams are relatively close to you in MMR.
This makes for a fairly accurate system, and I believe Blizzard might have adjusted the MMR and TR point calculation at the conclusion of matches slightly to improve this rate of growth and decay. Over all, I'd say the MMR seems to be "working as intended" and doing a fairly decent job at rating players and teams.
WoW.com: What kind of teams are the most troublesome for you right now? What are you doing about them?
Euneek: I'm running my convention RRP once again this season. This is the same comp with which I obtained the world's first 3000 rating with, and we seem to be able to handle and do well versus almost any comp.
I'd say the compositions that have given us the most troubles and frustration, though, would have to be certain Shadowcleave teams, as well as a few Wizardcleave teams. The ability to kite and spam-peel evidenced by the Shadowcleave teams seems to hurt us quite a bit by limiting our ability to get quick. clean swaps to targets. It really frustrates me and whichever rogue I am playing with at the time.
Now, Wizardcleaves are just obviously a pain in the ass, since there's always that chance that someone can just get global'd, or die with within a Counter Spell or Spell Lock. Seeing "10k ... 10k" followed by a couple more 7 or 9k's within 1 or 2 globals just makes me want to cry.
We've been trying out a few different strategies versus these teams and seem to be doing okay. But we'll see how the season plays out.
WoW.com: How have you changed your team in the current season?
Euneek: We tried out a few different compositions at the start of this season, since Reckful (my rogue) signed with Complexity and is doing a great job playing with Venruki and Sodah.
I obviously had to make a choice. I could be on the back burner and play with Reckful when Venruki wasn't online or when they wanted to run some RRP in 3v3 with me. Or, I could venture off and once again establish a new team for the third season in a row and try to defend my rank 1 spot on the BG9 ladder.
I decided to go with the latter: my quest to reclaim the #1 spot on BG9 3v3 ladder again, as well as get a sponsorship to allow my team to be sent to and able to compete at LAN events. Like I said, I tried a few different comps with some great players, but it just seems that the most solid, over all, all-around comp for a Ret Paladin to succeed in this season, is the RRP again.
I've tried out quite a few different rogues and priests including some big names such as Fuzion, who was my priest with Reckful last season when we hit world first 3000, as well as the legendary Neilyo. People still use his name in coined phrases like "my Death Coil just got Neilyo'd", "he Neilyo'd my Kidney Shot", "he Neilyo'd my Blind", etc. It's been very fun and interesting playing with so many different people. It's weird to me how players have such different play styles, while still having success in this game.
I'd say one of the biggest surprises to me is that it's funny how I read an article a week or two ago saying how "the greatest arena talent has yet to be found." It was about how things change, people adapt, people quit, people join, and through all of this, it seems as though all the older and more renowned names across the world always find a way to overshadow any of the new. Unless somehow, some way, the new person is able to just exceed expectations, fly above the rest, and do something remarkable to finally be embraced.
This holds true with one of the fellow rogues who I am currently playing with, Excentric, who has played as well, if not better, than Neilyo with myself. It's refreshing because Neilyo obviously is already locked up being signed under the fNatic gaming title, thus he can't get sponsored and compete with me at LAN events.
I had to find another rogue that I was comfortable and confident in playing with, and it seems as though he kind of just fell into my lap.