| ||Loken Shockwaves Gal'darah |
As this season's Two Bosses Enter, One Boss Leaves tournament creeps closer to the finals, spectators have taken to demonstrating their support with impassioned posts. It's not trolling – not here, where the whole point is to sway other readers into voting for the boss you think would rule the fantasy deathmatch ring. Should a troll have trumped a Titan in this week's battle?
shadowhowl1900: It's not [that] Loken is hard to kill. He's one [of] the Titans. Titans beats trolls -- unless they are fighting on forums.
| ||Power Auras tips for hunters |
Power Auras for hunters – you either love it, or you hate it. We found a reader who had a particularly colorful opinion.
humperdinck: It looks like an Ed Hardy shirt threw up on WoW.
| ||Battlegrounds for beginners |
Have you seen the start of Zach Yonzon's new mini-series within The Art of War(craft) on Battlegrounds for beginners?
Kavu: Awesome series! As a leveling player, it's nice to have someone explain the BGs in English. Thanks, and I can't wait for the rest.
Wetwork: I don't understand the "fight on the flag" mantra. If I am killing the opposing faction, it matters not where I kill them. Killing them near a flag is no more beneficial than killing them on a road. If I kill an enemy BEFORE they even GET to the node, isn't that just as effective as killing them NEAR the node? The result is the same: they die and get a re-spawn timer. In fact, I usually like to hang out at INTERSECTIONS (i.e., right at the bottom of the LM path near the BS/Farm three-way juncture). Why? Because then I have a superior field of view, can call incomings much more effectively and maintain a steady stream of preventive kills.
The "take three and hold" mantra is unbelievably over-simplistic and fail. There are 15 players in AB. If five defend each node, you are applying absolutely zero pressure on the enemy nodes, in which case, the enemy will realize this and attack one of your nodes with superior numbers. What wins games is fast and intelligent maneuvering.
My personal guiding concept is "go where everyone else is not." If I see a major battle happening at BS and nothing happening at LM, I go to the LM and if necessary, call for another player or two and CAP it, as opposed to wasting time and dying in a giant zerg fight at BS. By going where everyone else isn't, you will constantly be applying pressure to the enemy wherever they are weakest, and you will usually win.
I've had a ton of games where I have 6+ assaults and hold down a node single-handedly by just stealthing after the enemy player caps the flag and leaves, and I re-cap it.
Omegan01: "I don't understand the 'fight on the flag' mantra." It's simple. If you are attacking a node, fighting on the flag means it's easier to snatch a chance to cap it during a lull in the fight. If you're defending a node, fighting on the flag means it's easier to interrupt people attempting to cap the flag, since even a single point of damage will stop the cast.
"If I kill an enemy BEFORE they even GET to the node, isn't that just as effective as killing them NEAR the node? The result is the same: they die, and get a re-spawn timer." Actually, you're wrong. If you kill a player on the road instead of at a node, you've actually hurt your team by ensuring he'll go back to the graveyard, rez and re-enter the fight more quickly than if he'd wasted the extra seconds running to his destination.
Hanging out on the roads serves nobody except for individuals who want to farm personal honor. If you're not actively attacking or defending nodes, you're not helping your team.
| ||Community members honored with item names |
With more and more community members being honored by Blizzard with in-game items in their name, who do you think should be next up on the list?
PickyPants: Matt Rossi needs something to tank with that has no avoidance on it.
Rossi's Shard of Woe
Hit rating increased by 37
Expertise increased by 14
Chance on hit: Protect yourself in a furry chest-hair sweater, increasing armor by 1000 and increasing block value by 20 for 20 seconds. Can stack up to 5 times.
| ||Icecrown raid access progression |
To gate content, or not to gate content?
John: If they're going to do limited attempts and this kind of staggering content over a long period of time, I hope they can at least give it some kind of mechanic. Just saying all this Ashen Verdict stuff isn't enough, for me. Isle of QD was an awesome way to do this -- a server-wide effort. Then they scrapped the Sunwell walls and just popped them when they were ready.
I can understand not wanting a raid to be "done" in a week or two, but couldn't they accomplish that with game mechanics? I mean, can't they make the LK so powerful that you NEED the gear in IC to defeat him? But I guess it does allow people to learn the fight which I guess is what they don't want. Hmmmmmm. I just think there's something cool about a boss being available in-game that no one has the gear to defeat yet.
joggoms: John is getting at the real issue there. You can't make these encounters so hard that they slow down the "uber" raiders (but probaby only by a day or two) while effectively locking out the "normal" raiders. It's a Band-Aid fix for a broken system, but it's probably the best they can do for now.
Personally, I don't see why Blizz cares that the top guilds can clear stuff the day it releases, since that is only a tiny percentage of the player base ... But they do care, and this is their response to that.
Charlie: I am taking your concern seriously and wish to pose you a question. Is it better to beat all the content and have nothing to do afterwards? Or to be forced to wait and experience content over a longer period of time? I don't really have an answer to the question, but I think Blizzard believes in the second half. I believe the term is "delayed gratification."
Erin: I'm all about having elite content for elite guilds and gating progression, but I feel like Blizz is doing it all wrong this time. The staggered release I can understand. They don't want players to clear the content in one week and then have to wait nine months for Cataclysm.
But this whole "You have X number of attempts before the boss despawns" is complete garbage, in my opinion. I'm in a pretty decent raiding guild. We have TOC-25 on farm and have been dipping our toes into Heroic modes. It can take us 30 attempts before we're able to down the beasts, simply because we're still learning the fight in heroic, not to mention that there is a random element to every fight. What if the snowbold hits a healer twice in a row just when they got a fire thrown on them?
By limiting content in this way, I feel like Blizz is hampering the guilds that do progression bosses but aren't the elitest of the elite. It takes us far more than five attempts to down a boss when we're learning the encounter, and it's no fun to set some time aside for raiding only to have the encounter despawn after five measly attempts.
I'm glad that it will increase over time. I get the lore behind it, and I understand that it will give elite guilds a chance to shine. But I've been waiting since Blizzcon '07 to raid ICC, and I don't like being told, now that it's nearly out, that I can only attempt certain bosses so many times. Not fun.
| ||The new Tier 10 purchasing model |
Badges for one and all – a success story?
Finnicks: The time investment is definitely increased, but not really the "difficulty." The only difference now is that instead of having to use a Trophy and X number of badges for your T10.5 piece, you have to buy the T10 piece (for roughly double what T9 cost) then exchange it with the class-specific "Trophy."
A diligent player can expend about 30-45 minutes a day doing a random heroic for 14 badges and then spend about an hour once a week doing the weekly raid, for a net of 24 Frost Badges a week, without so much as setting foot in ICC (unless, of course, the weekly raid happens to be Marrowgar). So four months or so would see a person more or less completely decked out in Tier 10, as well as completely decked out in Triumph gear from all the hundreds of Triumph badges they'll get in the interim.
Cephas: Minor errata for Finnicks' post: The weekly raid quest has been nerfed to five Frost and five Triumph. That brings it down to 19 Frost/week. If I'm doing my math correctly, it'll be almost five months before anyone who only goes into Icecrown to kill Marrowgar gets full T10.
Boz: If you play every single day, it will take you a month to get a single piece of tier armor. That's a lot of emblems for casuals with limited play time, which seems about right. The more you play, the more you are rewarded. Pretty consistent with the existing game structure.