Saturday, May 04, 2013

Different Class

Pulp. Almost like PvP, honest

If you’re into PvP, recent changes have made PvE gear pretty decent in PvP, and vice-versa. Outside of sockets and set bonuses, you can get a bunch of Honor (or Justice Points, and covert them to Honor at the Justice Trade Good vendors in Orgrimmar and Stormwind) and buy Item Level (ilvl) 476 PvP gear to help fill in any gaps and help you get into the higher rungs of PvE content.
What was once frowned upon becomes acceptable over time, simply because it makes perfect sense in the bigger context. In this case, after years of hiding the practice away as as not ideal but acceptable in CM responses, in forums and across the net, Blizzard finally came clean. They admitted that what many of us have done for years is, thinking about it, not a bad idea. Yes, you can legitimately cheese your iLevel with PvP gear to gain access to PvE content. We know you've indulged in the past, but now we're saying publicly it's okay :D

I find myself asking as a result: why did this take so long to 'officially' admit?

The problem, once 5.3 hits, at least for people coming to this content fresh at 90, is time. You want to go straight to the top tier and don't have the time to run all the faction dailies to get the 476 gear needed to open LFR. In fact, reading the a whole of the above statement (find it here), running Heroics is pretty much a waste of time as well, because 463 gear from those bosses at the rate it drops isn't going to cut it either. PvP gear is now at a level where the experienced player can make it work as well as PvE gear and vice versa (though many will argue the good player was never defined by their gear, but that's another argument.) All those years of feeling cheap and dirty because you made PvP gear. All those people who made their first million selling the stuff for precisely that reason. Suddenly, its okay to be that person, because Blizzard know you're only running those low-level LFR's to get the gear to access the next tier, and then the next.

You're having to run them anyway because there's very little gear available elsewhere. Don't start me off on Hunter weapons ^^

In discussion of this yesterday on Twitter, someone made the very sensible point that one new five man dungeon with enough loot stuffed into it could fix this 'problem' in a stroke (that's what happened with ZA and ZG in Cataclysm, after all.) The issue with that, as we have noted before, is that dungeons outside the remit of an Expansion are clearly not on the agenda when scenarios utilise the existing phase technology and world terrain in a far more development-friendly fashion. No doubt this is why the 'heroic' scenario is a 'thing' in 5.3. Basic quests in the new Barrens content will, as a default, reward 476-489 gear. Blizzard are assured you'll have more than enough places to pick up the armour you need, so much so that they confidently predict:

an adventurous player should be should be able to walk right into the Raid Finder Throne of Thunder within a week or two of hitting level 90, even without touching any of the mainland reputations.

The problem with the Raid Finder however is that rewards are only at iLevel 502: the Quartermaster at the Shado Pan Offensive is dishing out 522 gear. What a lot of people are after isn't just the gear from the ToT, it's the rep and the Valor Points. Once you hit Exalted with them, it makes more sense to collect Valor the quickest way possible, and I'm betting that won't be running Lei Shen every week, that will mean people nipping back into MSV (which runs at about 15 minutes at peak times on my server currently) Gearing in LFR is only part of the story.

Once upon a time, I could guarantee being in a PuG Raid at least once a week where Gear Finder would suggest chucking out a player in full PvP gear because people considered them inferior. Well, back then they were. A lot has changed in the last year on the PvP front, with Blizzard making a very real effort to remove the stigma attached to the two different gear types. The fact remains however: there are two types of playstyle at the core of Warcraft, which demand different things from the equipment they use. You may be able to sub in pieces here and there, but to do the best job in either situation you really require one or the other. If you didn't, the two separate sets wouldn't exist, right?

Until that changes, cheesing iLevels remains just that. Publically encouraging people to do so is a bold step to take, and I look forward to seeing what changes this move may foster in game...


enigmachine said...

I kept meaning to check this out.
It will be good for alts.
Thanks for the reminder :)

Anonymous said...

A 476 pvp piece is exactly the same as a 476 pve piece since the pvp stats are "free". I don't see it as dangerous or problematic. It's a nice touch actually. This is the first time I've ever considered pvp pcs for alts as a realistic solution to the ilvl requirement issue.