June 27, 2006

My thoughts on World of Warcraft's proposed patch 1.12 PvP changes

I've finally gotten the time to sit down and write down my thoughts regarding these changes I posted a few days ago.

Cross-Realm Battlegrounds

It's no secret that battlegrounds just suck ass in World of Warcraft. They are required to gain PvP rank, but only if you grind them religiously for hours on end. Even then you have to be in an uber group that wins FAST. It's really not about "winning" as much as it's about "winning fast". A good team can win every match they go into, but if they take a long time to do it... well the fast uber teams will be several PvP ranks higher.

On top of this there is the constant problem of not being able to play in a battleground when you want. Whether waiting in a queue or simply hoping a battleground opens on your server there isn't much bright side to the current battlegrounds system.

So Blizzard is going to try and fix a lot of these problems in one full sweep. Battlegrounds are basically going to become a mini-Guild Wars built into World of Warcraft with the features of Blizzard's Battle.net service. It's actually a good fix because it solves more than just one issue.

First of all it fixes the queue issue. There should always be a battleground available for play within a few minutes of clicking join. Not only this, but no longer will low population servers have to worry about the lack of open battlegrounds to play in.

The second major change that this brings with it is COMPETITION! We're talking ladders and tournaments. Hopefully this will also mean that the more a team wins the harder teams they are sent to face. Instead of an uber team continually fighting much weaker pick up groups they will be sent to fight other teams that have won as many matches as them. This way those uber groups don't get to roll in free honor... they actually have to work for it.

It's unknown even if the battlegrounds will give honor any longer. I suspect that with these changes that honor may be only obtainable via open world PvP. The new battlegrounds may offer a much different ranking system. Instead of gaining honor for rank you gain points to compete in tournaments, play in ladder matches, and eventually work towards some kick-ass gear and of course there is always faction grinding. So if the world champion Warsong Gulch team plays on your server... they could be strutting some pretty impressive gear that showcases their achievement.

This also opens up battlegrounds to become a competitive sport. Blizzard is already at Lanwar and the CPL. With this system they could take it even a step farther. And the best part is the casual gamers can still enjoy the same battleground, but at an equal level!

World PvP

World PvP will be covered in part II...

UPDATE: 14 Nov, 2009 - Updated labels and corrected spelling.