Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Take Me Out

One other thing I should mention based on some other comments in here is that, just like today, PvP Power will be active vs players in any context, not just inside PvP instances. So if you're comparing a PvE and PvP piece of the same item level -- for example, a piece of Conquest gear and a piece of Heroic raid gear -- it should work out something like this: 
  • The PvE item is stronger in PvE instances 
  • The PvP item is stronger in PvP instances 
  • The PvE item is slightly stronger vs creatures in the open world 
  • The PvP item is slightly stronger vs players in the open world
Once again, I need to be clear that this is all early development thinking and anything might change, but our hope is that whatever we end up doing makes things work something like that. 

You remember last week when I suggested removing all PvP Crafted Gear from the game? Well, I've got a better idea. You can thank CM Lore for it.

As you can see, if proposed changes for the game come into effect with reference to gear, wearing PvP gear for... well PvP is what you ought to be doing, as will be the case for PvE gear. There's also changes coming up to PvP Power so that although actual output will be comparable, it's all going to depend on which targets you're hitting to begin with, and this is a key point. This means (if I read this right) is that PvE creatures will effectively be 'flagged' as PvE mobs for the first time whilst players will have a separate flag which means the calculations will be different for each thing you kill in game. This seems fairly ambitious to me in terms of fundamental game changes, and I can see why Lore might be a bit cautious about this being in the planning stage only. However, this potential change would make an awful lot of stuff a damn sight easier to both explain and understand for new players. It might also give Blizzard a chance to physically enforce a few rules about gear in it's own matchmaking systems.

What if, let's just say as an example, LFR wouldn't let you enter if you had PvP items equipped? Similarly, what if you wanted to do a Rated BG but couldn't enter if you were wearing PvE items? Suddenly, crafting could become a completely different beast, especially if the game allowed you to pick a PvP/PvE specialisation... and again we have a situation where gear becomes a means of 'gating' you into content, but only so far as to ensure you're doing the MOST DAMAGE you can. That can't be bad, can it? I mean, if this worked well you could at least guarantee that the people you were playing with via random matchmaking were at least making a cursory effort, even if they then went AFK or put you on follow for the remainder of their playtime. We still don't have a good way to tell if people are any good at playing, of course, but suddenly there might be a way to make people show some actual willing as to which flavour of gameplay they'd like to indulge in. Oh, and we can 'flag' World PvP Zones as being instances a la Wintergrasp so if you're not properly geared, you don't get into those either...

But of course, this is not simply infeasible but unfair.


Blizzard's biggest single problem is their own success when it comes to trying to introduce change to make the game easier for new players to understand is the old, static player base. Yeah the ones who have been paying their taxes since Vanilla so you can still be here so don't change anything that might make me move out of my comfort zone who exhibit a resistance to change that can sometimes be disturbing. However, there is a valid point to be made, especially when Blizzard are trying to reduce the number of gear sets people need to lug about. You shouldn't be penalised if you wanna PvP by not having the gear, same with PvE. People should be able to do anything they want, at any point, without having to worry about the right items. After all, if my way became THE way, the Holy Grail of World PvP loses all its meaning, and that's just not right... and so we return to the perpetual stalemate. Ironic when Blizzard is making it's most focussed effort for many years to allow PvP and PvE to exist independently and to benefit those who choose to actually make the decision to take a side. That's the problem, in the end, having to make choices. Getting everything you want, regardless of consequence, could be argued to be a far more dangerous precedent to take than making people choose.

Actually, World PvP could be where you could just wear what you wanted without consequence, quite easily, but if you wanted to push your opposition's face into the floor and stand on their head, you'd still need to go do the work to get the gear to stomp harder than anyone else. I reckon I could cope with that too.

Many options, COUNT THEM.
There are many ways to allow people to enter PvP in Warlords with absolutely no work (or at least very little) The instageared PvP 90 could be one option. @Wabbage on Twitter suggested giving a complete set of PvP gear as starting area rewards, maybe like the DK Starting Zone... in fact, maybe the PvP 'area' in Warlords could offer something similar, so you could take your favourite 90 who you've already levelled to start there and pick up everything you need to begin playing say, in a day. Would a day's work be too much to ask for a set of gear you could then level in via Battlegrounds? I don't think so, though I am sure some people could find issue with it. The key here has to be freedom of choice for players, but at a price. This is really important: the same way people need to understand that if you want to play PvE well there are things you need to do, the same is undoubtedly true of PvP, perhaps more so.

Most PvP-ers would argue it's their branch of the game that involves more skill and co-ordination, and they're right. If you want to do something properly, then making the effort should be the default state and not complained about when suggested. I doubt what many would consider the Draconian restrictions I'm advocating here would come to pass, simply because Blizzard know which side their bread is buttered, and letting everyone cheese everything means they keep the most money in the bank. Still, I don't think there's anything wrong with pushing your playerbase into actually getting off their behinds and doing some work now and again... you know, some ACTUAL thinking once in a while. Needless to say, I hope these changes come to pass, because it will mean for the people who really do put in the hard graft, there will be some obvious rewards for doing so, on both sides of the gearing fence.

1 comment:

Belghast said...

I would love to see them be able to do away with PVP gear entirely. I was more than a bit disappointed when they began talking about how they would simplify gear so that it would work for you regardless of your spec.... but stopped short of saying that gear would work the same for PVP. IF they feel they need to add specific PVP stats, why don't they simply get attached to every single item based in ilevel and function through the same kind of tech that allows them to switch primary stats based on your spec?

If we are removing the need for multiple sets of gear, it seems high time that we do the same for PVE vs PVP gear.