Friday, October 9, 2009

The Grind, or "Getting Something for Effort"

I've mentioned before, I don't mind dying constantly in battlegrounds. Dying is part of the day-to-day if you're going to PVP (I like PVP when I choose to PVP, as opposed to someone else choosing it for me).

So I have two grinds I'm trying to consolidate: hyacinth macaw (1 in 5,000 droprate) and PVP mounts (150 WSG/AB/AV marks). I'm up to 19 WSG marks and about 600 tries for the macaw.

And it got me thinking -- raiders and PVPers have a longstanding crankiness at each other as they think the other side has it "easy" and is too weak to do what they do. (Newsflash -- both are hard, and the argument itself is far too subjective to call.) As for PVP, when you're in greens like Birdy... you really do pay for any gear you get.

Not just in deaths, game losses, or lack of respect (though those abound). You pay in blood (pressure) and tears (of rage).

After winning one WSG because I lucked onto a good team and then joining another and enjoying the "fun" of getting graveyard camped by their whole team INCLUDING the flag carrier, I afk'd out and went back to farming the macaw. Because even though the macaw has an ultra-low droprate, I know that if I just keep killing the mobs it will eventually drop. And that certainty is pretty comforting after a stinky graveyard camp.

I'm thinking of using PVP to level Birdy in the xpac until she has the marks for mounts. At least then I'll have a goal other than bashing my brains in.

So, I ask you: is PVP win? Or lose?


  1. I like PvP. Not so much to get better gear, but just because PvE can get static. I mean, I still do like PvE better than PvP, in part due to that static content allowing you to figure out how to beat something, and then consistently do so. It has tangible, satisfying, fun-to-reach benchmarks. But . . . sometimes it's fun to compete with other players, to engage in an activity where the other side of the game is less predictable. I mean, yeah, you see common tactics to win the varoius BGs . . . but not usually executed exactly the same every time and with their success hinging to a large degree on the people behind the pixels. That variability makes PvP exciting.

    Having said that, I don't PvP as much as the really dedicated PvPers. My gear, while not quite greens, still isn't nearly as good as the dedicated PvPers. In PvP gear on my (relatively recently) level 80 feral Druid, I'm still wearing most of the Eviscerator set I crafted at level 78.

    The result, between subpar gear and lack of practice, is that I die a lot. WSG is the most frustrating because there are a lot of people who play a lot of WSG, have very good gear and are very efficient at singling you out for the kill. I've taken a liking to Wintergrasp, where it's easy to stick with a larger group, get lost in a large crowd or jump into a tank and make myself useful.

    I like PvP even more with my healer. At level 73, I'm underlevelled for the BGs I do, but that's not so uncommon with the advent of BG XP. And healing is a whole different role than melee. Despite the conventional wisdom that you kill the healers first, I actually end up dying less frequently. My theory is that players get caught up in the fight against their specific opponent and don't even notice me standing on the sidelines at first. Even after they see my teammates health jump, looking for me means looking away from the player in their face. Doing that without getting killed takes more practice than simply running across a field with a pack of teammates.

    And BG healing is extremely satisfying. Runnning up to a fight that your side is losing, hitting Tranquility and suddenly all your teammates health bars are back to bigger than the other teams' . . . or variations on that. There are just never enough healers in the BGs, so it's good to be there when your mates you need you.

    In terms of getting gear, on my level 80, I have a few pieces of PvP gear. And the pieces I have are nice ilevel 226 pieces because I got to hand pick my rewards and save up for them. Most of my gear is crafted or PvE related. Either quest rewards or rep rewards or boss drops. They're all ilvl 200 or lower, though. Those are the rewards, sometimes totally random rewards, for the challenges for which I'm appropriately geared.

    But you're right. Evaluating that is totally subjective. Even though most of my gear is PvE gear, it reflects the aspect of the game where I spend most of my time more than it reflects the value or challenge of that aspect.

    So is PvP win or lose? I think it totally depends on your criteria. If by "win" you mean "gets you good gear efficiently", well, it can be if you're willing to spend the time on it. If by "win" you mean "tons of fun". Again, that's subjective. I like it for the change of pace. I think it adds an exciting element to the World of Warcraft. YMMV.

  2. I like PvP when I win. Which, on Lamora, is almost never (so many stuns, interrupts, silences, etc), and Eldena, always (Ret Paladin, anyone).

  3. I like it, but I'd say it's because for me there's nothing really at stake. I do it for the fun of the experience and while I try my best, and I do get disappointed if we're clearly outmatched, I don't get all that upset if I lose, even if I lose a lot.

    Weirdly, I don't even care if I'm getting camped, because it is for a limited time in a limited environment. I was recently in WSG as a level 11 priest (I only had a few bars left and was tired of leveling through questing) and there was an enemy that had dinged 20 in the course of the battle who was just sitting there camping me at the graveyard, but I kept at it, ressing, bubbling, and healing for as long as I could until my teammates got him and suddenly we were free.

    It's actually one of the few things that doesn't seem like a grind to me because it's not so dependent on randomness. Your luck with teams will determine how long it takes to get the marks/honor you want, but you will get it eventually. Farming a rare drop (I've been going for Crimson Whelpling on my pet collecting toon) is just boring (to me) with no guarantee of success, except that eventually you might make enough money to just buy the darn thing. ;)

  4. Graveyard camping can only go so far now. But having lower level gear at this stage of the game can REALLY hurt you in PVP. For arenas the standard for clothies is 900 Resilience and about 22k HP (unbuffed) while plate classes can get away with around 700 RES due to their higher health totals. If you're only doing BGs for the marks, chalk up that GY Camp to 1 more mark. Sometimes if you can sneak past the zerg and grab the flag you'll scare them into ending the game... a strategy I've used many times. It used to be fun to hide on THEIR roof and watch them run around trying to find me, but now with flag carrier tracking it's not so viable. >.>

    The ultimate answer: transfer to Horde and run with me, your hubby and my wife... then just watch them try to camp you. ;P

  5. /shakes head

    Jon, Jon, Jon...

    If I make Birdy horde, she won't have pretty blue hair anymore.

  6. I used to pvp on my hunter, and I considered dying my mana regen and pet res. Worked for me. I agree that graveyard camping sucks the big one though.
    I only pvp on my resto druid now though. She's gotten herself hateful and is working on deadly now (or is it the other way round? >.>). Anyway, healing in BGs! It is win! I love it, I hardly ever die (the others actually protect me when they see me shift into tree!!!) and I've finally learned the tricks to staying alive... If you were on Dust I'd recommend trying the healing thing, but I guess Birdie doesn't have that option >.> I'd recommend spending some time setting up your bars for pvp, getting your oshits on there if they aren't already, so on. It's a lot more fun when you realise your class's full pvp potential.


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