Pain vs Potential

They Both Have a Plan One's more optimistic than the other.

They Both Have a Plan
One’s more optimistic than the other.

I am not a natural PvPer.  With the exception of mosquitoes who must and will die the moment they get within my reach, I generally operate somewhere between a “live and let live” type philosophy and a “leave me the hell alone” sort of lifestyle.  I don’t derive much enjoyment from the notion of beating an opponent, skilled or otherwise – I’d just rather not deal with said opponent in the first place.

My friend Goa has been attempting to get me more into PvP these days. Because I think that you should be open minded about things and I like to hang out with my buddies, I agreed to give it more of a shot.  He crafted a set of PvP armor and a good axe to get Mechalis started, but overcoming my personality and habits is still uphill work.  So far, he can get me into maybe three or four random battlegrounds, max.

Usually, one or more of the following will happen multiple times:

  1. I finally get to the site of action, only get my head smashed in by four or five different players at once before I get more than one skill off.
  2. I get rogued in the back, and have to stand there stunned while I get my head smashed in by four or five different players at once.
  3. I get rogued in the back, and the rogue proceeds to cheerily mince my kidneys before dispatching me with a solid stab to the spine.
  4. I get left alone at Blood Elf tower and I lose the joint to the Alliance.
  5. A priest will let me try to smack them down, then get bored with me and Fear me.  By the time I am un-Feared, said priest is gone, and so is my dignity.
  6. A boomchicken will laugh at me.  THEY MOONFIRE ME EVEN!
  7. I get left alone at the Farm and I lose the joint to the Alliance.
  8. I get really cheesed off by the way all my opponents insist on jumping around like monkeys on crack.  STAND STILL WHILE I WHACK AWAY AT YOU FOR GAWD’S SAKE, IT’S NOT LIKE I’M GOING TO GET ANYWHERE ANYWAY!
  9. I make the mistake of reading the bg chat.
  10. I make the mistake of responding in bg chat.
  11. I make the mistake of doing both in the same bg.
  12. I try to kill the healer, but nobody else is helping me and I’m terrible, so the healer just keeps on healing his/herself back to full.
  13. Speaking of healers: I get rogued in the back, and I survive the initial stun and ensuing damage to my vital organs, but while I am trying to murder said rogue in a blind rage, a healer comes up and heals the blasted cad back to full health.
  14. I click fruitlessly at the warlock candy or potion button, waiting for the rogue to stop rogueing me in the back already so I can at least pretend to do something here.  THEN I DIE.
ROGUED AGAIN Rogues, they're like an infestation OF DEATH.

ROGUED AGAIN
Rogues, they’re like an infestation. OF DEATH.

I get that the element of combat (and hence regular personal death) is part and parcel of PvP.  I’m fine with dying, I really am.  It’s just that I suffer from a feeling of intense hopelessness when I’m dead two seconds after waiting twenty-eight seconds to resurrect, or when I die immediately after running all the way to where the fighting is.  I end up feeling frustrated that others can smash me to pieces so easily when I can barely put a damn dent in their armor.

A lot of it’s skill, which I lack. (I’m not gonna lie about that.)  But it definitely helps to be alive (and not stunned/feared) in order to use what skill you have!  Goa assures me that PvP is much more fun if you have the gear to survive it, but there are two major problems for me in this approach.  First, I had hoped the fancy PvP set he made would make a clear difference in living when compared to wearing full PvE stuff, but it seems that the best use of the crafted PvP set is upping gearscore to get into LFR.  Second, since it pretty much is like wearing tin foil when actually PvPing, that must mean you either have to gear up in tandem with everyone at the beginning of the expansion (which is what Goa did), or have such a burning love of PvP/proving your skills/being the best/SOMETHING that you’re willing to get your ass handed to you in the same settings day in, day out, until you finally can afford the fancy gear that will actually protect said ass.

Reflecting on my weak attempts so far, I can think of TWO times I had discernible fun.

  1. Violaryn somehow managed to get the flag from the Alliance base all the way back to the Horde one without getting horribly mangled.  I am pretty sure the Alliance was sleeping at the keyboard.
  2. I got my camera angle turned around taking a picture, and in trying to straighten it up, I fell off the boat in Strand of the Ancients.  I had to spend the entire bg swimming in to shore.

The first makes PvP sound promising – if I could do that more, that’d be great.  The second makes me think that if I find swimming to shore that much more enjoyable, I may never like PvP.

But I don’t want to give up just yet.  So HOW do you make PvP fun if you’re incompetent at it and very undergeared?  Here are my ideas:

  1. Go in wearing nothing, because underwear always makes things funnier, and it’s not like your gear does a darn tootin’ thing for you anyway
  2. Attempt to screenshot the most spectacular deaths ever, like being mind controlled off a cliff while on fire while wearing one of the “Love is in the Air” holiday dresses while riding a Swift Forest Strider or something
  3. Go in wielding something stupid, like a Dark Herring, and really believe that people notice it
  4. Magically convince Blizzard to make a bg set on the Isle of Giants, where you can use Primal Direhorns to literally squish other players or Primal Devilsaurs to eat those same Primal Direhorns, because everything is better with dinosaurs
  5. Magically convince Blizzard to separate groups by gearscore as well as level
  6. Go in so drunk, you can’t see a thing

I’m thinking 1 and 6 sound the most reasonable.

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25 thoughts on “Pain vs Potential

  1. tomeoftheancient

    Way, way, back in Vanilla my first character was enjoying PvP. If only she had read this list back then. She made the fatal mistake of doing #9. On realizing she was grouped with a bunch of psychopaths, she fled never to return.

    Reply
  2. wowstorylines

    LOL, yes, bgs can be fun if you just kind of roll with it a bit for a while. I used to be an avid PvPer back in the day, however, with this expansion, I’m happy to “hear” about them rather than participate – there appears to be a new breed of player in there these days. I used to run with a group of friends that were much better at it than I was.

    Never ever try to read the bg chat – your IQ will drop to lower than room temperature and your vocabulary along with it. Seems like everyone that goes in there develops Tourette’s Syndrome and the only words they know are four letters long.

    Keep trying, don’t give up and eventually you’ll get to where you know what is going on in some of the randoms.

    Reply
    1. Prinnie Powah Post author

      I know what’s going on! DEATH AND DISMEMBERMENT! That’s what’s going on!

      Oh, you mean like SKILL sorta knowledge.

      I generally make a point of running with a group of friends who are all much, much, much, much better at PvPing than I am. It doesn’t help. When I resurrect and run back, I’ve lost them in the chaos and I have NO CLUE where they are. If I find them again, it’s like a miracle.

      Reply
      1. wowstorylines

        hehe, well, feign death and camo – hide in a bush. At least I know where my corpse is at all times 😀 – you still get the points, you’re not AFK, you’re running back to your corpse.

        Reply
    1. Prinnie Powah Post author

      For the Hoard!

      New playable race in the next expansion: packrat. Looks like a Grummie, sounds like a kobold, and smells like a tuskarr. Likes to keep large quantities of cosmetics on hand for use in improving its rather plain appearance.

      Reply
  3. repgrind

    I think I love you. I am going to try that swimming trick if I ever find myself in Strand again, which isn’t likely to happen unless the dog queues me for it while I am in the other room.

    Reply
    1. Prinnie Powah Post author

      I won’t lie to you, it’s not a method for the weak. The people who notice you fall off only stop laughing once they start fighting, AND it’s a really long swim.

      People always say that cats are manipulative, but I’ve so seen dogs plot things, or do bad things and then look totally innocent.

      Reply
        1. Prinnie Powah Post author

          She is a DK, but I think I was on Therm at that time. (Either Therm or Ignitine.) And I didn’t have Mr. Squiddles the creepy fen strider at the time …

          That said, if I had been on Mech, I’d probably pretend that Path of Frost was broken. /reloadui isn’t working, yeah.

          Reply
  4. Neri

    This is what I love about my Shaman. I am squishy as hell, but I’m like a nuke if I am in the right place at the right time. Thunderstorming people off the ledge in EotS or off towers in AV or off LM in AB always makes me do this ridiculously evil laugh that makes even my husband shudder. I just imagine the nerd rage at the other side and it makes me a very happy lady! I think hunters can do something similar now as well. Try it one time, you won’t be able to stop once you do 😛

    I believe in 5.3 they are changing it so that everyone has a base resilience of 65% regardless of what gear you are wearing (Yay, PvP in PvE gear is viable!), so the issues you’re having currently should be addressed by that change.

    Definitely ignore BG chat… unless you’re calling out incs 😉

    Reply
    1. Prinnie Powah Post author

      I got nuked off the side of EotS once, but I was too surprised to nerdrage. At first I was staring at somebody, then I was flying, then I was saying, “Huh, I think that’s the wall of the thing …” and it dawned on me that where I was falling was a Bad Place.

      If I live like, TWO WHOLE SECONDS longer in general, I’ll be thrilled. :<

      On second thought, if I live two whole seconds longer but am getting rogued in the back the entire time, that could be depressing.

      I do call out incoming because MY VERY LIFE depends on it. I'm usually praying to Gawd that my friends will see and come to my rescue before I die.

      Reply
  5. Leit

    Horrifyingly, the crafted PvP gear is actually better than nothing, even if it doesn’t feel like it. Problem is the not-crafted gear is just way, way, way better. Yeah, the “skill based” part of the game is heavily influenced by gear. gg blizz…

    There were a few videos back in Wrath by a rogue called Mercader. He engaged in world PvP in nothing but a dapper suit and a pair of haunted herrings. His tactics mercilessly exploited how Mut and Hemo were scaled at the time, but even so the skill he showed was incredible. I don’t really see anyone ever doing that nowadays. Gear’s become too central to scaling – it’s the devs’ answer to everything.

    You’ve probably heard a bunch of stuff from your PvP buddies, but here’s my approach to low-gear PvP:
    – Don’t bother with pitched battles. Try and be in the right place at the right time – which generally means where everyone else isn’t. Sure, you’re alone at Blood Elf, but it means someone’s there to call inc and slow the attackers by a smidge. Go swipe the flag while everyone else is milling in the middle. Go swipe Draenei Ruins while everyone’s fighting it out for the flag. Call inc on mines. Man guns on the fort and kill glaives.
    – Work on delaying tactics. Army, defensives, LoS and run like a little girl the moment you see a red nameplate. LoS is severely underrated – people will tend to chase a single player around forever. Goblins have rocket boosts, a sprint that DKs otherwise lack. Engineers have all sorts of fun toys.
    – If you have to get involved in a fight, it’s not about damage, it’s about disruption. Do everything you can to prevent the other team from doing what they do. Death knights have brilliant tools for breaking enemy positions – Gorefiends can drag half the enemy team into a druid whirly thing, circle of frost, sunbeam etc. You’re probably better served death gripping that healer behind your fighting line or into a couple of buddies than trying to take him alone. Use Strangulate. Mind Freeze anything they’re daft enough to cast next to you. If you’re playing a belf, Arcane Torrent. Slow things down, spread your DK AIDS – the debuffs are worth it and dispelling all that is a nuisance for a healer. Your job is to be as frustrating as huma- gobli- um, possible.
    – You can death grip people off EotS/LM with you. Take that, shammies.
    – Lastly, do the Isle PvP dailies. The better your gear, the better you’ll do – especially when you have a weapon, since they have huge whacking gobs of PvP power on them, which means you’ll be doing more than a slight tickle for a change. Isle dailies are quick, easy and give a nice chunk of honor without spending half your time in the graveyard.

    Reply
    1. Prinnie Powah Post author

      “Horrifyingly, the crafted PvP gear is actually better than nothing, even if it doesn’t feel like it. Problem is the not-crafted gear is just way, way, way better.”

      Ok, sure, but it seems like living two seconds longer thanks to wearing crafted PvP gar is totally useless and/or pointless because I am either going to be enduring a four second stun or a four second fear.

      “There were a few videos back in Wrath by a rogue called Mercader. He engaged in world PvP in nothing but a dapper suit and a pair of haunted herrings. His tactics mercilessly exploited how Mut and Hemo were scaled at the time, but even so the skill he showed was incredible.”

      If I had a PvP hero, this guy would probably be it.

      “Work on delaying tactics. Army, defensives, LoS and run like a little girl the moment you see a red nameplate. LoS is severely underrated – people will tend to chase a single player around forever. Goblins have rocket boosts, a sprint that DKs otherwise lack. Engineers have all sorts of fun toys.”

      ❤ Rocket Jump, because sometimes it feels like my short little legs just can't keep up.

      I run like a little girl – a very angry little girl who wants to claw your eyes out. So, I'm usually going "OMFG THERE'S THERE'S THAT HUNTARD WHO KEEPS PICKING ON ME! CHAAAAAAAAARGE!"

      "If you have to get involved in a fight, it’s not about damage, it’s about disruption. Do everything you can to prevent the other team from doing what they do."

      My two favorite things ever are Asphyxiate and Remorseless Winter, and I wish they would never be on cooldown because using them is pretty much the only time I feel cool. Asphyxiate comes in very handy when I am faced with an opponent who seems to be hopped up on two dozen Pixi Stix and can't stop dancing around. NO DANCE MOVE CAN WITHSTAND DARTH VADER. I like using Remorseless Winter, running into a bunch of people, and Death Striking as much as I possibly can so I can stay alive and dream of FREEZING THEM ALL.

      "Lastly, do the Isle PvP dailies. The better your gear, the better you’ll do – especially when you have a weapon, since they have huge whacking gobs of PvP power on them, which means you’ll be doing more than a slight tickle for a change. Isle dailies are quick, easy and give a nice chunk of honor without spending half your time in the graveyard."

      I feel totally doomed. Basically the answer to all my problems ever is the place that I frankly dread going to. Still don't have a PvE weapon? Go to the Isle of Thunder to get tokens. Got crappy gear? Go to the Isle of Thunder and do dailies. Need a dagger so you can off yourself whenever you are feeling particularly dramatic? Go to the Isle of Thunder. Isle of Thunder. Isle of Thunder. Isle of Thunder /sob

      I seem to have tied the Isle to being lonely and sad, because it was new and the Thing To Do (and something actually I tried to do) right after the Guild Drama. Whenever I think of the joint, it's always the bad things, because they're pretty much all I dealt with there. Say I'd go there with former guildmates who were still friendly to me, but then they'd have to drop me to go group with the guild. Lovely seeing them do the same quests they were doing with you a mere minute ago – you know they have to keep the peace and that's their choice, but it still is sad. Or they'd try to drag me along anyway, but some of the people central to my abrupt departure were also in the party, which pretty much made everything while they were there awkward and awful (although their silent and sudden hearth when they couldn't stand me anymore was also sad). I stopped going soon after because I just didn't find anything enjoyable there. Dailies aren't fun for me, and getting my aloneness pushed front and center was just too much.

      I find the sheer number of dailies on the island to be oppressive. A HUGE issue for me the fact that I can't effing fly because Blizzard has some notion that "seeing the world" makes me more involved. I just don't have the time to spend doing a million dailies AND getting from point A to point B to do more freaking dailies. And now that everything's unlocked, nobody wants to go there with me. They've done it all, they're exalted, it's just a waste of time and they've got better things to do. So I feel horrible there because of past history, find the tasks at hand tedious because "jumping around as a Saurok" isn't a quest objective, and I can't distract myself by running around with friends. sa;lfkjas;lfkjas;lkfj

      To me, feeling that lonely and sad IN A GAME is more of a problem than even Therm's bad luck with RNG or Mech's inability to survive in PvP. So that's why I haven't gone, and why I'm having a hard time dragging myself there even now when people keep saying "this is the solution!"

      If I've gotta have dailies, why can't I have 'em on the Isle of Giants? :<

      Reply
      1. Leit

        I don’t know if you 😀

        * and by sort of I mean directly, when I burnt out hard and there wasn’t another tank in the guild willing to go to the line.

        Reply
      2. Leit

        Oh fershlugginer’s sake, wtb delete. Damn thing interpreted most of my reply as markup.

        I don’t know if you dig Mercader because you’ve seen his videos or because he sounds awesome, but if it’s because he sounds awesome then go look for “Herring seeks your life”. My favourite because, after some bear dude gets CC’d through the entire half minute or more while Mercader kills his buddy, he decides “fuck this imma /dance”.

        I like Asphyxiate because it’s the only proper stun a DK has. Also DARTH VADER YESSS 😀

        Remorseless requires a) that you be in the middle of a furball and b) that you live long enough while no-one notices you’re trying to stun them all. Not really a skill I see as compatible with low gear. 😛

        Hmm… I mostly run as a loner, so the “go there with friends” thing isn’t something that showed up in consideration. Still, at least the PvP dailies are quick, don’t involve running across half the island, and won’t really put you in an area where you’ll meet your old guildies? I dunno.

        I get the same feeling you describe when I think of Throne of the Four Winds – tanking that sort of* led to an explosion in my previous guild, and I swore I’d never go back. Even now when it’s a simple facerofl fight, I can’t really go with my guildies because the place just feels awful. So yeah, mild hypocrisy if I were to just tell you to suck it up. If getting repeatedly stomped to paste in BGs while learning the ropes is more your speed, go with that instead. 😀

        * and by sort of I mean directly, when I burnt out hard and there wasn’t another tank in the guild willing to go to the line.

        Reply
        1. Prinnie Powah Post author

          I was about to say … I was reading that as, “I don’t know if you smile.” That made me think something like, “OF COURSE I SMILE. Just not on the Isle of Thunder.” BUT THEN the asterisk made no sense! It was puzzling.

          As far as Mercader goes, it’s just because he sounds awesome. A dude dual-wielding herring deserves respect! Also, isn’t that a map projection? Or is that the Mercator …

          “Remorseless requires a) that you be in the middle of a furball and b) that you live long enough while no-one notices you’re trying to stun them all. Not really a skill I see as compatible with low gear”

          WELL SOMETIMES IT WORKS
          … maybe.

          Ok fine, it’s totally stupid and it worked onceish when there was just a lot of crap going on. BUT I STILL LIKE IT.

          The strange thing is, I often quest alone. Mining is a totally solitary activity. I can and do solo things. The Isle of Thunder just rubbed in “LOOK WHAT YOU AREN’T A PART OF ANYMORE” at the wrong time, and I just can’t seem to shake the gloomy, distant feeling I get when I go there by myself. I might blame the weather or the sheer grayness of it all, but I often adore decrepit, sad-looking places. So it’s probably just my emotions going “NO! NO TOUCH!” I try to drag people with me, because if I’m chatting and/or running for a friend while screaming “HELP MEEEEEEE,” I’m distracted and not thinking about the past.

          Getting repeatedly stomped into paste is not my idea of a fun time either, but for entirely different reasons. USELESS, FUTILE RAGE IS AGGRAVATING.

          Reply
          1. Leit

            Mercator is the projection. It’s the most popular projection, and I should probably say something about how it’s ever so coincidental that all the *important* places suffer little distortion but the rest of the world can go hang. THIRD WORLD PRIDE YO.

            Isle might seem gloomy and hostile because it’s monotonously grey and there’s almost nowhere where things won’t try and kill you. I’ve had a frickin’ tyrannosaurus run into the vendor cave to try and kill me!

            Yeah, being repeatedly stomped isn’t my idea of a good time either. Maybe the resi changes tomorrow will help? I’m of the thinking that it’ll make lower powered players feel moar featherdusterish. :/

            Reply
            1. Prinnie Powah Post author

              You sure he wasn’t after the vendor? Even if not, I kinda understand where that dino’s coming from. NOMS ARE IMPORTANT.

              Is more featherdusterish good, or bad? Will I sting like a bee, or will I just keep on dying?

              Reply
              1. Leit

                Okay, to explain the changes they’re trying to make in aggregate: in your low gear you’ll explode slightly less quickly. In their high gear they’ll take scratch damage at about the same rate. With your low ilvl weapon you’ll do about the same damage. With their high ilvl weapon they’ll do a little less.

                Basically they’re trying to tone down burst strategies by nerfing damage in high gear and they’re trying to get people involved in PvP by removing the worst of the gear barrier to entry.

                Reply
                1. Prinnie Powah Post author

                  I think they need to take this “removing the worst of the gear barrier to entry” further. The only gear you can wear in PvP is useless pretty/funny/weird vanity crap like a tuxedo jacket or whatever. Or you could go in naked. Either way.

                  Reply

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