Wednesday, July 2, 2008

A Rebuttal for Bear

Now, after reading, rereading, making some French toast, and reading once more Bear’s latest rant (and saving it into a Word document so I could refer to it again), I’ve taken a deep, calming breath, and have this to say:

Bear.

I disagree.

Respectfully.

Upon further deliberation, I decided perhaps I should give reasons behind why I disagree with his attack upon the PvP system. Well, not “attack,” per se, but rather him “calling it out,” as it were. And it's going to crit your face by way of length, so hold on.

The PvP system is not bullshit. I repeat, it is functioning. And is, dare I say it, a good idea.

Perhaps I have a different mindset. I started on a PvP server, and I actually love it. I have to wear PvP gear when I go to highly populated areas such as the Isle, and I do take dirt naps far more often than I help others get to sleep. When I play on my PvE servers, I do notice that whenever the conversation turns towards PvP, so many people view it as a chore rather than just a different way to play, a different and fun facet of the game, that I just say how I like it, give some tips, and then kind of excuse myself from the conversation quietly. However, this does not change the importance behind understanding the PvP system, as well as its lack of male cow fecal matter.

If you look at the disparity between Season 1 gear and the new Brutal’s set (hell, even the Vengeful set), you will see that there is an expansive gulf, just as there is between Heroics and Kara versus Sunwell epics. Already, people in S1 gear had a very difficult time in Arenas against Vengeful and Merciless players. With the advent of Brutal gear, S1 is virtually obsolete. Going into an Arena match with S1 will get you cut up like paper. If they had not added Merciless to the battlegrounds, a few things would happen:

  • The gulf between the top end Arena players, the good, the bad, and the new would widen a great deal.
  • A fresh level 70 would have little to no way to compete in arenas. Not with any prayer of advancement, anyway.
  • PvE high-end raid gear would, as in pre-BC, begin to trump that gear gained by PvP

I absolutely hate the mindset that PvP gear are “welfare epics.” I cannot stand it. Especially not now, when you can turn in tier tokens for PvP gear, when you can purchase PvP gear with badges, when you can entirely skip a tier of raiding thanks to badge gear. If running through BGs is welfare, why isn’t badge gear?

That last item, the skipping of an entire tier of raiding, I know personally about. Without seeing any boss past Lurker in SSC and never setting foot in TK, I received a spot in my current guild, Sunder (which, at the time, was 4/5 Hyjal and 5/9 BT), and am currently their only regularly raiding Restoration Druid. I had been to Gruul’s maybe four times, and downed Magtheridon perhaps twice. But I farmed Kara for four or five months. That will do you a lot of good, in the long run.

For Restoration Druids, the new 100 badge pants are arguably better than the pants which drop off of Shade of Akama in Black Temple. The 60 badge shoulders are the best shoulders until Void Reaver in TK. Druids in Sunwell guilds are still using the 41 badge healing trinket. I know, I’ve seen it. I didn’t agree with her gemming choice, but I definitely took note of her trinket.

41 badges. That’s two weeks of full Kara clears with a badge leftover for kicks, and it functions through Sunwell.

Being in T6 with T6 gear does not automatically equate competency. Just about every single day in guild chat someone laments another raider’s gear choice and enchants, or their wasted talent points. I’ve seen druids better geared than me with straight +healing gems (that’s all; no spirit, no intellect, just straight plus healing) and a load of talents only partially filled.

Now. I do not agree with Amanda Dean. I actually am not too over-fond of her, especially regarding her somewhat snobby attitude in general. I do not believe PvP > PvE or vice-versa. I do disagree with another of your points, though, Bear.

Technically, I run raids with PvPers. My server is PvP. Our MS/Slam warrior had a 2k rating, we had, at one time, an excellent mage with the “Grand Marshall” title, our MT has the “Justicar” and “Duelist” title, and our best Paladin, Sharlet, has three pieces of the Brutal Gladiator set after the first week of Season 4, not to mention (if I recall correctly) the new belt, boots and bracers, only available through the BG honor grind. He also very recently explained to me why different ranks of Starfire were better than max rank (in PvP and PvE situations), he can tell you exactly what rank of Holy Light to use in certain situations, he can give you a proper DPS rotation for your rogue, tell you how to gem and enchant your Feral Tanking set, and give you the location and level requirements for almost every quest in the game. And he can, with a Holy, not Shockadin, but Holy spec, grab you by the scruff of your neck, slam your face into the dirt, rub your nose in the mess that is your skill and make you wish you had no idea that WoW existed, let alone PvP. With his raiding Holy spec and his Prot gear, he tanks Hyjal trash.

PvP does teach you a lot about what other classes are capable of, in a sense, as well. And that’s not helpful to face other players in a PvE setting, per se, but to work with them. This is to a limited extent, since PvP requires different rotations, more reaction/prediction than memorization and often different specs. However, though chain trapping is more difficult in PvP, I cannot see how a hunter so skilled at ice traps that a warrior is stuck powerless while they burn down the one healer at the node and then rip into their CC’d target cannot handle a distracting shot on a mob.

It most certainly does teach mana conservation. If you are out of mana in a BG, you are dead, unless you can find somewhere to hide and drink. You win nodes by your healer outlasting their healer (if people forget about the “kill the healer” rule, anyway). You have to know when to pot, when to run, to move out of the AoE, so on, and so on, and so forth. You know, “don’t stand in the fire”?

Fights like the Priestess fight in Magister’s Terrace and the Illidari Council are made immeasurably easier by people having been exposed to PvP and who can keep their cool in a chaotic, unpredictable situation.

And yes, Battlegrounds do let you “coast” to an extent, to get gear. However, the grind is eternally longer the worse you are at cooperation, just as getting your raid drop/badge gear will take inexorably longer (unless you’re extremely lucky, and in that case you can be terribad and very lucky) if you don’t work together or don’t know your class. But you can actually gain far better gear, in most cases, by farming badges than by farming Honor, if your goal is to be a PvE raider, and you don’t get looked at funny by your raiding guild.

Cooperation is actually paramount in BGs, and you can make the grind short and pleasurable the better you are at it, just as in raiding. In fact, the fastest, most efficient way to gain honor is to download Preform AV, make sure you have working Vent, and join a premade/org. Even trade-chat-formed premades can function together and take BGs by storm. In these you learn to take directives, often from a stranger, work with people you hardly know to take down an unpredictable enemy, and utterly decimate EotS in under eight minutes for an intense amount of honor. And, just like in PvE, you have to learn the strategies each BG requires and adjust it according to what players you have.

And, unlike in a raid, if someone isn’t pulling their weight, you can flag them afk or alert a GM, and they can lose all their PvP gear and their privilege to fight. You tell a GM someone is just wanding in a raid while gloating about their new epic shoulders of pwn and you’ll probably just get laughed at.

The nature of BGs themselves are changing as well. Throw someone into one with PvE gear, and you might as well lock them in a room by themselves with Nightbane. A PvE geared person stands little chance against someone in Vengeful or Brutal. Blue rep-PvP gear or S1? You’re still going to struggle. Without making Merciless available by honor grind, you’re ensuring many people’s times in both BGs and Arena are full of bloody, painful death and a slow, unrewarding grind.

That secret conversation you have regarding the PvP-geared members of your Kara Pug? I’m quite certain that when you stroll into a BG with PvE gear on, you get the same treatment. Because, let’s face it, PvE gear is not for PvP, except in certain cases (and it’s best to learn that there will always be exceptions that go both ways). I’ve had to gem and enchant PvP gear for PvE, and I’ve seen people gem and enchant PvE gear for PvP and do quite well. Bosses in Shattered Halls and Botanica and I’m sure others drop weapons with resilience on them; those are decidedly PvE instances.

A hunter I ran Kara with a lot back in my old guild was full PvP gear, both arena and that which you buy with honor, and he kicked ass on the meters and CC.

And, I cannot stress this enough: If your main hatred for BGs is the few asshats who spew profane and idiotic garbage, learn to use two tools: your profanity filter and “report spam.” If you put on your profanity filter, every word showcasing someone’s lack of vocabulary and ingenuity comes out in neat little symbols like this: !@#$%. And if you report someone for spam, they get ignored without filling up your ignore list. I play with my profanity filter on; it’s both functional and hilarious, especially when your guild finds out and wants to play the “is this censored?” game. Report spam is quick and easy; and if they’re filling up BG chat with caps and franticness and freak-outs, what else is it, really?

Merciless gear through honor not bullshit. It’s only bullshit to people who dislike Battlegrounds because you want something you can’t get without it or don’t want to raid for. It’s like how my feral friend hates raiding. He covets the gear from some of the bosses, but he finds raiding too monotonous and predictable. So, he only PvP’s, and mostly only BG’s, as he can only log in during odd, inconsistent times. He has done Heroics for badges. He’s complained that he doesn’t like it, but he doesn’t call it bullshit. Yes, feral druids are in a unique position with their gear requirements, but I know Paladins like gladiator gloves, that rogues like the arena weapons, and hunters like the axes. And, perhaps the greatest practical joke of all: the +15 resilience to chest drops from doing PvE. A two minute trinket is required by my guild for Winterchill and Archimonde (and at only 8k honor, it’s hardly something horribly painful to grind out), but every applicant who wears other PvP gear gets questioned as to why they have it over better PvE gear or badge gear.

And, honestly, if you don’t want to do T5 level content, why do you feel you need the gear? In some cases, it will actually gimp your threat generation as well as making your rage bar slow to fill. I know plenty of tanks, of all classes, who take gear off just so they can tank better.

And, now that I have written this, painted a wall and a deck, reread it, taken a shower, reread Bear’s post and added more to mine, let me say, with confidence:

They’re two different grinds. The gear from each can be used interchangeably, to an extent. You can get gear for either-or through one of the grinds, to an extent. Some of one is needed for the other, to an extent. You can coast through both for good rewards, to an extent. They both teach valuable skills that can be utilized in the other, to an extent. Both require cooperation and teamwork to get done in a reasonable amount of time, to an extent.

Neither one is bullshit.

37 comments:

Horns said...

It seems I somehow missed this post of yours.
I honestly can't think of any words to tell you how I enjoyed reading it and agree with pretty much everything you said - truly remarkable, I love it.

Whimsy said...

/salute

Eloquent, rational, well reasoned and a pleasure to read.

Daniel said...

I very much agree with you. I hate people who lament about the PvP system who cannot look past their own noses to see not everyone plays the game the same way they do.

But the best way to generate discussion is to complain I guess. The squeaky wheel gets the grease.

Stupid Mage said...

Very well stated.

I may have to reread Bear's post. I think he was trying to say it's bullshit that you have to do one in order to do the other. That having it as something near a requirement was crap.

Anyway, I don't care how people progress as long as it isn't AFK. What they did only affects me by making me want to get the cool glowy stuff they have.

Stef said...

I agree with you, nice post.

However I think one issue you and Bear are both skirting is the progression curve.

Blizzard have (quite rightly) created 2 grinds. They need to take care that both stay about the same in time and effort terms.

I think the real heart of many of the PvP vs. PvE gear complaints is that players of one preference feel "forced" into the other side of the game because the gear is starkly better or more accessible.

Not sure if there is a real solution to it either. Maybe they are going to have to change Mob abilities more - exploit the reslience stat so that it is even more useful in PvP and totally wasted in PvE. If they extended that mechanic widely enough, they could possibly penalise PvE gear in PvP (and vice versa) to the point where both sets are clearly second best in the other side of the game.

Short of doing that though, the Min/Max crowd (which is most of WoW really) will be chasing the best item. If that item is from "the wrong side" of the game, they'll be complaining about it the whole way.

Awlbiste said...

I very much agree. I was thinking more or less these same thoughts but lack the ability or drive to write them all down.

Pike said...

I agree! Very much!

The grind for my PvP stuff was loooooooong and painful and I never did any premades because it felt like "cheating" somehow, and I lost most of my BGs and I worked my butt off for my "welfare epics". Took weeks. Months even. Of day-long grinds.

It was worth it because now I can go into a battleground and have fun without having to worry about going in my pure-PvE gear and getting completely trashed. =) PvP is so much more fun now that I have some PvP gear, and I have always loved PvP in the first place.

Now I've got to admit, I am a PvE player at heart, and as such, I do put slightly more personal value on my PvE stuff and I usually log out in my PvE stuff so it's on Armory. But my value on that stuff is simply that-- personal, and I'm not gonna look down on people who are proud of their PvP stuff. They are better players than I am, in many ways.

Convalescence said...

I am humbled, truly; and not only because of the rather unexpected mention of Shar. ;x

Jarla said...

Very well written, well reasoned - excellent!

And I totally agree. /salute

Bell said...

@Stef - I can see what you're saying. However, PvP by its nature sets its own difficulty by the players within it. Who you face and how you play determines how fast you progress. It is almost completely out of Blizzard's hands. They can set requirements for the gear, but they can't *really* nerf encounters or buff weak mobs. They can play with class abilities, but you're always going to meet those people who blow you away, who have counter-classes or better gear. So while PvE has a traditional "it gets harder as you go up" curve, PvP has a "oh my god what are we getting ourselves into this time" curve (to an extent, Arena has a jagged "it gets harder as you go up" curve).

Improperly enchanted/gemmed PvE gear in PvP is virtually unusable, unless you're facing other people in PvE gear. And removing resilience from PvE would unfortunately cause a lot of problems for our feral and even boomkin tanks. Which, if it happens, could mean a well-needed review of feral itemization, so not necessarily a bad thing.

lucasbfr said...

/me takes mental note of the Report Spam idea :)

(I need to work on which gems are best, taking into consideration healing)

Merlot said...

It's a great post, and you paint a very eloquent rebuttal to anyone (myself included) who's ever said pvp skills are irrelevant in pve. But I think you brush over the issue at the core of this debate, which is the balance of pve and pvp gear — not the relative merits or it, or even necessarily how easy it is to come by, but how one set of gear works in another setting. You point out that there are two separate progressions with a measure of interchangability, but the interplay is very one sided. As you say, you can't walk into pvp in pve gear, but sadly the same is not true in reverse — at least early on in progression (the limit of my experience). It's very easy to walk into kara in pvp gear and outperform the raid. That's just not balanced. My belief is that Blizzard *tried* to segregate pvp and pve gear through the use of certain stats, such as resilience, spell penetration, and hit rating, but that they haven't been tuned correctly. The shortage of resilience and other primary stats on pve gear rules it out for use in pvp in most instances, but it's easy to overcome a shortage of, say, spell hit on pvp gear for use in raids. The fact is, pvp may not > pve, but pvp gear often does > pve gear. My personal wish is to be able to get the best possible gear for my level of progression in pve through pve — and for that gear to perform better in pve than equivalent pvp gear. Is that so much to ask for?

Megan said...

It's funny, everytime I see a rant about PVP, it's usually cause they suck and don't have the right attitude, the right mentality.

Case in point, BigBearPoster was merely after the S2 Shoulders for PVE Tanking stuff---he was there for a "drop" just like in PVE, instead of focusing on the competition, outwitting the opponent, beating all odds. I've learned to quickly recognize these type of people who are in a BG---they see the items as the reward and ignore everything else, not realizing even when they get said item, they will still suck at the game because they never put any effort into it in the first place.

A scrub with an epic is still a scrub.

And if they go on about talking about welfare---Badge gear is the true welfare in the game, along with things like crafted LAWL FrozenIDONTREPLACETILLT6Shadowweave and PrimalSEVENKHPPRIESTSMAKEMECRYMooncloth sets.

Cellere said...

Megan:

I don't you meant to, but you come of snooty in your comment. I think you need to reread or read what BBB posted. I like PvE and PvP, on my rogue I have almost 57k lifetime kills (only 10k on my druid though, but she's only a baby) and I think both are valid paths of gearing up.

What BBB is doing is lamenting the fact that you almost HAVE to PvP (even if you don't like it) for certain items, especially for feral druids with the uncrittability factor. I don't know if you know much about Feral stats (both feral dps and tank) allocation but a lot of the best in slot or best attainable in slot are PvP gear.

Also the fact that they need to be a reasonable way to balance effort and reward in PvP. Especially now that Season 4 is out, the battlegrounds are horribly full with the "I'm running into the wall" crowd.

I think some people tend to take a general comment personally, saying "OMG, some people just coast afk in pvp for gear" to mean ALL people who pvp for gear coast afk in the battlegrounds.

Anyways, there is not an inherently better side. PvP is not > than PvE or vice versa. It's the individual's skill level that makes the difference.

Felkan said...

I don't believe you addressed, what I think, is BBB primary issue with BGs. That they can be done solo with no teamwork and you end up with nice pieces even if you fail. It might take longer than if you have "skill" and "teamwork", but in the end you always get a purple. There isn't an equivalent in PvE. Badges from 5-mans can't be done solo. Heck they are tough with a pug as you are required to have the right mix of classes and some amount of teamwork/skill. With BGs, I can (and do), just run in there and mash my Mangle (Cat) button until they die or I die. Rinse repeat. Within a few days I get a nice purple that (unfortunately) can be just as good, if not better than anything I can get from badges or T4/5 raids.

As mentioned in some of the responses to BBB posts, PvP isn't broken. The model Blizzard has in place for PvP is great as it provides a nice relatively easy way for new players (or alts) to gear up to handle tougher PvP content without requireing 24 of your friends to walk you thru the old content several times.

Unfortunately, Blizzard seems to have left PvE'rs out in the cold when it comes to gearing up for "current" content when you need to run old content that no one wants to run. There just isn't a way to obtain comparable level gear from outdated content solo like you can with PvP.

Even if today, I could, solo, obtain 5 badges a night, it would take me literally months to get 4-5 pieces of badge gear. But with PvP, I can (and have) obtain 2-3 purples (to supplement weak spots in my bear tanking kit) in less than 2 weeks of faking my way thru BGs!

That's why PvE's complain. They see a easy way to gear up for "current" PvP content, but there isn't an equivalent means to do the same in PvE, except for doing PvP which they may, or may not, what to do.

What if the only way to get "old" S2 gear was to run heroic MgT 3 times a night for 2 weeks? I think the PvP'rs would be QQ'ing quite a bit.

Felkan said...

Just realized that my last statement was incorrect. It should read...

What if I only had to kill 750 lvl 70 humanoids for each piece of "old" T4 gear I wanted? And, by the way, T4 gear is just as good as "S2/3" gear for Arena PvP? That is the level of effort and skill it takes to obtain S2 gear from BGs that can then be used in PvE.

750 @ 30sec each == 6.25 hours of continuous solo brain dead PvE for one piece of S2/3 gear. That's what it is like to run BGs to obtain S2 shoulders.

David said...

I fully agree with this post. I am so sick and tired of people saying its "bullshit". It takes TIME and effort to get the good pvp gear. And you know what? It is a HELL of a lot better than PvE gear is for PVP!!! If I took my 'welfare' pvp gear into your raid, I would suck. That is the way it should be. Get the HELL off your high horse and allow others to enjoy the game.

Felkan, Seriously, who cares if I lose every single BG and eventually get a purple. Do you have any idea how long that would take? Wait, have you even tried? What is your solution exactly? Or are you just bitching. The game should go back the way it was? Casuals get SCREWED out of epics because they are not in big guilds? Don't have the contacts? The friends?

Since I can't post on big bear butt, I am posting here. Enjoy your aspect of the game (Raiding) and I will enjoy mine. how DARE you tell me how I choose to play is bullshit. How dare you.

felkan said...

@david: Yes I have run BGs for 2-3 pieces for my Feral tanking set. Shoulders, wrists and gloves. The time it takes to guarantee a quality piece is laughable compared to the time it takes to earn them via raids.

You can earn enough honor in a single weekend, playing 2-3 hours a night, have zero skill and get S2 shoulders (that's describes me perfectly when I "earned" [makes me laugh just typing it] my S1 shoulders in BGs). It takes 75 badges to get PvE shoulders. That is a crap load of heroic 5-mans. Figure 2+ hours per run by the time you get the right group together to make the run.

Read my two posts again, the PvP progression is NOT broken. Blizzard has done a great job with it. PvE is broken (there isn't an easy solo way to obtain nearly up-to-date gear). This brokenness is made worst by the fact easy to obtain PvP gear is better (in some cases) than the equivalent PvE gear.

I'm not bitching about PvP. I'm bitching because I have to PvP (well it is far, far, far easier) to get gear upgrade to play current PvE content. That just doesn't make any sense.

Felkan said...

@All: I think I have a solution.

a) Allow "expired" (currently T4 and T5) tier'd PvE gear tokens to be purchased with gold (1000g a piece??) or with mats collected from solo grinding activities (12 primal X, 80 NW, etc.).

or

b) Create full 5-piece set of craftable items that are BoP and then relegated to BoE as they become "out-dated". So, T4-like pieces would currently be BoE as would a few T5-like pieces. The remaining T5-like pieces would still be BoP.

Option A seems easier to implement since it wouldn't require new gear, just a different way to purchase it.

Neither option A or option B would require mats that cannot be obtained through solo activities. However, some _minor_ level of organization, teamwork and/or PvE(!) skill would speed up the collection process. This would make the whole process analogous to BGs.

Some (all??) of the mats required would be BoP (a la Marks of Honor) such that you couldn't just buy the mats.

Arithor said...

Bell,

As always an enjoyable read. i must admit to a little disappointment but the article was well written.

My $0.02.

Bgs don't really change, but the rewards do. Doing heroics now is pretty much for shards and badges. To raid you get 2 70, then have to pvp for gear before accepted. Raid guilds are't keen to take players when they can get easy upgrades through pvp.

PVP has no progression. If you had to get blues, then s1 then s2 i would feel a little better. Also you still get the stuff if you lose. thats a head spin for me. I am one who thinks they are welfare epics. I accept that having them does not make you a noob, but i also accept you don't even have to be present to earn them. Really can't do that in pve. (/gkick)

Thanks again for the enjoyable read.

p.s. I can't arena. Partly cos i suck, partly cos my ping is >450ms so i can't compare arena progression.

Bell said...

I can see something like this devolving into an argument, so be careful to keep it clean, kids. ♥

Now, something I hadn't thought of before but that I realized when reading through your comments:

PvP gear is achievable through solo means because, simply put, you can play it solo. That sounds circular, doesn't it? But think about it. If PvP is possible to play alone, what sense would it make to have the gear for it only be available through group-grinds? Whereas all PvE besides solo-quests requires multiple people, and all these multiple people need drops, so it makes sense you a) cannot solo it and b) have longer to wait (more people need gear when you work together).

Blizzard introduced the badge reward system to smooth the way and help you progress, raid-wise, faster. But PvE is ultimately geared towards group-play while PvP is and is not. The best pieces of PvP gear do require a group.

I think feral itemization in itself is the problem, not that Merciless Glad gear is being offered as a reward.

Basically:
PvP is able to be solo'd, so it makes sense you can gain gear through solo play.
PvE is not able to be solo'd, so it does not make sense to get the gear through solo play.

Felkan said...

@bell:

What you miss is that BGs provide a solo means for end-game PvP'ers (Arena) to get "caught up" gear wise with those who have been playing through the entire progression. There isn't an equivalent in PvE.

BG:Arena =/= heoric 5-mans:current end-game raids

Furthermore BG are in themselves a viable and fun means to continue playing the game once you reach lvl 70 completely solo and at your own pace (30min here, 2 hours there, etc.). What's the equivalent in PvE? Dailies?

I think most would agree that "current" end-game PvE (now T6) is analogous to "current" end-game PvE S4. But BGs have no PvE peer and heroic 5-mans/badge loot does not have an analog in PvP. And this is made worst by the fact that some PvP gear (for certain slots and specs) is "better" than equivlant PvE gear and significantly easier to obtain. Hence the bickering between PvP'rs and PvE'rs. What some see as an Apple-to-Apple comparison is really an Apple-to-Orange comparison. Blame Blizzard.

Bell said...

@felkan - actually...yes. Dailies. Farming. Belt of Blasting? Primal Mooncloth? Thunderhawk? Shadowcloth? These are roughly equal to (and in some cases better than) T5, just as Merciless is roughly equal to T5, though these won't get you questioned by your RL. Though you cannot catch up to the exact same extent you can in PvP, it's because of a simple idea:

PvP requires smaller groups than PvE. The "high end" of PvP is no larger than a five-man arena team. The high end of PvE, however, is 25.

It makes sense to go from solo to fives; that's how it works in PvE as well. But PvE just continues it on to be solo's-5's-10's-25's. It's a very different progression as you pointed out. You cannot "solo" to high-end raiding equivalents because unless you are in the environment where you can get that amount of people together, it's completely unnecessary. Whereas BGs are much easier and more enjoyable when one has the PvP gear to survive, even when solo.

And, something I did not go too in-depth into before is that there is PvE-obtained gear you can use in PvP. The healing badge shoulders, though PvE in nature, can be gemmed for PvP and have been used by 2k+ rating resto druids. You can purchase PvP gear through badges and tier tokens.

The grinds are different on purpose, but both of them do overlap to roughly the same extent. I know healers need the cloak and the battlemaster's trink from badges for their PvP sets just as I know ferals who want those Merciless shoulders from BG play.

Once you get to level 70 yes, you begin to run out of solo PvE content. But does it make sense to create one-mannable instances? All there is to solo is quests, and there are plenty of those at 70, refreshing everyday, that give you the money to purchase your Belt of Blasting.

felkan said...

@bell: While the BoE craftable items do fill some gaps they come nowhere near the complete sets I can obtain from BGs.

As a feral Kitty there 2-3 BoE craftables worth purchasing. 1 as a feral tank. In a BG, I can obtain 8+ pieces of gear, plus trinkets.

If dailies gave you mats, enough gold, etc. to obtain a T4/5 item once per week, you'd have an argument, but they don't. I've been exalted with SSO for some time (mostly from dailies), all I have from that is a neck piece, some gold (used to buy mats for one belt) and 4-5 badges. In the same time I could have (playing as crappy as I do), in BGs, obtained 4-6 pieces of gear.

I understand that PvE requires group skills before you jump into end-game material. But the same is true for end-game PvP (Arenas). BGs do not prepare you for Arenas, but they do allow you to fairly quickly gear up for them. Why can't PvE'rs get the same benefit from their "casual" portion of the game? Rapid gear-up to be able to play in "current" end-game content.

Bell said...

Because the "group" aspect of PvE is much larger than PvP.

PvP Progression is basically
solo --> 2/3/5

PvE progression is
solo --> 5 ---> 10 ---> 25

Therefore it makes -perfect- sense that you need to do solo to get gear for fives, fives to get gear for tens, tens to get gear for 25's. Of course this is very simple, and there's some overlap and exceptions, but because the PvE progression is much more group oriented than PvP, you need the groups to get the gear to get in the bigger groups.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, its laughably easy to get S2 gear now. I did it during a w/e of casual pvp play, while fitting in some heroics + 10 man stuff.

Each to their own style of play, or course :) but the point is pretty simple: Blizzard allows you to afk or loose your way to better purples than if you defeated 25 man raid content, had the good fortune to see an item drop, AND the good fortune to win the roll.

If/when I do eventually defeat that 25 man boss will I wear the loot? Well, I wont need to to improve my stats, thats for sure.

Nobody is saying Pvp is too easy, or raid content is too hard. We are merely discussing that bizarre feeling that raiders get when they pick up a gear item after a few hours of super causal, pretty-much-solo play, thats better than anything you'll find in tempest keep.

Cmon, even hardcore high skilled PvPers must understand that would be just... a very weird experience !!!

felkan said...

@bell: I still think you are missing the point. We are talking about gearing up someone who wants to join an already T5/6 raid. Not skills. Just the gear.

If I as a new lvl 70 (or a new alt) want to join my RL friend's end-game raiding group, they have to spend their time helping me gear up (during which time I'll probably learn nothing since they will be so over geared). And it will take a signficant amount of their time. Just to get me to gear up.

If I as a new lvl 70 want to join my RL friend's 5-man arena team. I can do it all myself. Sure I'll still be lacking the skills but I will have the gear to get started.

In the PvE case, I don't even have the gear. And to make maters worst, the easy to obtain PvP gear is viable (for some item slots and specs) in PvE. Talk about insulting.

Bell said...

I am honestly done debating this because we both seem completely sure the other side is missing our points. I, in fact, disagree with you completely.

The fact is, though a piece here and there is good for PvE, BG gear can never completely replace PvE gear. The opposite is true as well. You can do PvP, high-end PvP, with PvE gear, and many people have.

A feral druid does not want to gear up in completely PvP gear any more than a resto or balance druid does.

But, this is going in circles. One of my favorite quotes:

"The human understanding when it has once adopted an opinion (either as being the received opinion or as being agreeable to itself) draws all things else to support and agree with it. And though there be a greater number and weight of instances to be found on the other side, yet these it either neglects and despises, or else by some distinction sets aside and rejects; in order that by this great and pernicious predetermination the authority of its former council may remain inviolate."

-Francis Bacon, The Four Idols

At this point, we'll just agree to disagree and believe the other has flawwed logic.

Armond said...

I tl;dr'd the comments on both posts, honestly, but I wanted to say that I think a lot of the problems you both pointed out would be solved simply by making PvP reward gear PvP only (with a few exceptions - I know there's a rogue PvP glove that's handy in BT, for example), and most PvE gear PvE-only. Of course... how do you get gear to start PvPing (because, realistically, once you hit 70 if you've got anything under S2 you might as well be in PvE gear)?

My 2 cents. But then, I don't even *have* a 70 yet, so I don't know what I'm talking about.

Contherianthrope said...

2 assumptions, before I start:

1)past the stage of wandering around the world randomly punching people in the face for honor/amusement/practice, pvp progession is then from instanced battlegrounds, where you acquire gear of sufficient stats that you don't get instantly turned into red mist and bone chips when you step into the final stage of pvp - arenas.

2)past wandering the world questing, pve progression is then from 5-man instanced dungeons, where you acquire gear good enough to survive in a raid long enough to kill off some giant nasties.


Now, an interesting little piece of maths.
20% of the largest pvp formation of players (a 5-man arena team), is a single player. Interestingly, this is exactly the number of players necessary to play in the 'gearing-up' stage of pvp - battlegrounds. From here, sheer brute-force time spent will acquire gear that is 2 tiers below the best available, a not insurmountable gap, that can be narrowed by then participating in arenas.

20% of the largest pve formation of players (a 25-man raid), is a 5-man group. This, is also exactly the number of players necessary to play in 5-man dungeons. From here, even on heroic, you will acquire gear that is, mostly not significantly better than the blue pvp gear that is now available from reputation vendors. This stuff is either insanely-itemised blues useful to nobody but an enchanter, purple stuff worse than well-itemised blues, or well itemised purple gear that is still not as good as season 1. Effectively, we're looking at about 3.5 'seasons' behind.

See, this is the problem with players, who appear to be self-identifying themselves as pvpers saying 'u no take raid gears solo!, naughty pve! go sit in your box'. We don't want it solo. We'll gladly work in a group to get stuff that's intended to be used in a group 5x the size of the one you gear-up in - I'm talking dungeons, baby!

Here's a possible mechanic for you, that is doable with quest/crafted/basic lv70 dungeon gear (barring stupid LFG PuGgies and their allergy to all things blue).
a single rune drops for one player per kill from each heroic end-of-dungeon boss. (so you can't just spend a single weekend poopsocking it for a whole set. Decrease the droprate to 50/75% if you want to slow it further.) Assemble a full set, and the Naaru will give you a pat on the head for getting their lost {nifty happy holy thing} back/keeping {stupidly powerful nasty demon thing} out of the enemy's hands and drop a full tier's-worth of set-tokens in your pocket.

Or, let's make it available from the lowest-level of raiding, then - yank the t4 tokens from kara/gruul/maggie and slap in T5 (x2, perhaps!) - it's no different from cranking out honour for old gear in a battleground - yeah, it'll take a while, but plug away at it for long enough, practically on auto-pilot, and you'll get it. The only problem with this, is there's still a degree of people bagging pvp gear in order to miss out the heroics.

Oh, and tack on the standard-issue complains of feral itemisation here - feral scaling is a giant pile of arse and it's crazy-mechanics are responsible for some of the bizarro-leather floating around out there.

Anyhow, it's rather late here, and I should have been in bed many hours ago. The preceeding probably contains a high % of crazy, random swapping between english and american spellings and unnecessary commas and hypens.

Matoushin said...

Personally, I side with the bear. I wouldn't go so far to call it bullshit, but I do think it's imbalanced.

The underlying sticky point is that of effort and achievement. No one, at least no worth noting, thinks that we should be able to press a button at level 70 and get S4/T6. I think everyone is in basic agreement that there should be some effort involved.

The sour point is that currently there is less effort involved in getting PvP gear than PvE gear.

Before tempers flare I'm not claiming that PvP gear is effortless, but that the amount of effort required for equivalent gear is notably less than that for PvE.

This is due to certain key design differences between the two styles of play. All of the following points are not meant to demean PvP, but simply point out key differences that make obtaining PvP gear easier.

1) Battlegrounds do not have reset timers. There is no artificial limit on how quickly you can get your gear, only emergent ones from what teams you get and how much time you have.

2) Battlegrounds do not require organization. While you're much more successful with it, you can still go into a battleground if you don't know 4, 9 or 24 other people.

3) Battlegrounds reward loss. Losing a battleground grants fewer tokens and less honor, but gains are still made.

4) Battleground difficulty is based upon your opponents. This coin flips either way. Sometimes you fight monstrous opponents, and sometimes there are hordes of idiots or undergeared players.

5) Progressive upgrades are not necessary. While they modestly improve your BG success and vastly improve Arena success, you can skip straight from quest/vendor gear to mostly S3.

Again, none of those 5 points are bad things. I am not advocating changing any of these, because it's perfectly sensible for PvP to function in this manner. The issue is that PvE hasn't been similarly streamlined, unless you count PvPing for gear.

PvE suffers from a few legacy issues, and current design flaws.

1) Itemization. All classes have optimal attributes they shoot for, but for a given slot there is usually one and only one drop per tier that is suited to their needs. Many classes must make large compromises on stats by taking suboptimal gear while waiting for the drop that would truly benefit them.

2) PvE is excessively linear. If you want a particular drop, you have to kill a particular boss. You can't kill Voidreaver and get the T5 chestpiece. Badges are a partial answer to this problem.

3) Badges are not a complete solution. When a new season starts, entire new sets of PvP gear are released. With each PvE patch, only a few pieces of PvE gear were added. You can not get a full set of T6 or even T5 level gear running Karazhan and Heroics each week.

4) The RNG is a cruel mistress. Some raids drop exactly what's needed, and others stubbornly won't. It's nearly impossible to get every last drop you desire, as polishing off that last spot is a matter of luck rather than a matter of time.

5) Guilds. You have to be in a guild to get anywhere raiding, and you must operate on your guild's schedule. Otherwise, you don't get to raid. Coordination is a must, or nothing ever gets done.

Again, most of these design "flaws" are necessary functions of how PvE should be. However, they are tuned in a way that makes PvE gear harder to acquire than PvP gear.

This isn't particularly fair to either group. I don't think any PvP player wants sycophantic PvE players in their BGs killing their chances of victory all the while decrying welfare epics. I don't think any PvE player enjoys being derided for submitting themselves to the RNG while their friends are collecting guaranteed loot. Everyone (except for a select group or two of assholes) would prefer if both were evenly difficult.

There isn't a dramatic schism between how difficult it is to get gear from either field, but there is a divide. I'm hoping that it is closed with the next expansion.

Seidhkona said...

I really appreciate the post, although I have to admit I'm really sick of the argument!

sonvar said...

Catching up on posts and I like your arguments. While the PvP gear can be gotten without raiding and in some cases can be better then PvE gear you can get it still takes time and effort on a person's part much like raiding. I've hated the whole "Welfare epics" term

Stupid Mage said...

Please Please Please
Stop with the gear segregation comments.

I'm very familiar with stupid stuff and the whole "keep PvP PvP and PvE PvE" thing is really stupid. You could color it orange, as it is that good at being a dumb idea.

Doing something like making PvP gear useless in instances doesn't solve any problems.

Boris said...

"The human understanding when it has once adopted an opinion (either as being the received opinion or as being agreeable to itself) draws all things else to support and agree with it. And though there be a greater number and weight of instances to be found on the other side, yet these it either neglects and despises, or else by some distinction sets aside and rejects; in order that by this great and pernicious predetermination the authority of its former council may remain inviolate."

-Francis Bacon, The Four Idols

god this quote is awesome, qft.

loved the blog. want to comment but this argument is really getting tiresome :P

Usherai said...

So, even though this may be a dead post, I decided to break it down easily into time required per epic. This is assuming for pvp that you get 1k honor per hour, which means you would have to be active in a bg, and assuming 1 kara run a week and 2 hours per heroic.

Say for sake of argument that you play 4 nights a week for 4 hours each night. That would net you 16k honor, or about 1 pvp epic. For pve, you would get 23 badges per kara, an average of 6 for the daily heroic and 4 for a random heroic. 2 heroics a night for 3 nights, 1 of which is the daily gets you 10+10+10+23= 53 badges per week. Badge price varies for each item, but if you count in just 1 epic per kara then pve can be geared faster than pvp. A fresh 70 will very likely get multiple epics from the various heroics and (almost) definitely from Kara.

Now some Kara pieces won't be as good as pvp pieces and vice versa. But considering that most classes need a 60 badge cloak for pvp and other optional badges pieces I think that overall it is roughly evened out. My hunter is in the top 3 damage for a guild that's 5/6 ssc and 2/4 eye and 2/6 hyjal wearing only 1 piece of t5. I have 2 pvp pieces (s3 axe and s4 gloves). The point really is that for an alt 70 in a t5/t6 guild you can gear up for t5 content in about 3-5 weeks as a dps class. For hardcore t6 you would obviously need mostly t5, but the same applies to trying to get a 2k+ arena rating.

Getting full s2 set s4 non rating requirement and s3 fillers would take over 200k honor. Assuming 16 hours a week that's about 12 weeks. 12 weeks of pve gets you 636 badges plus whatever drops you get.

People are acting like you could gear up a new 70 for t6 content in 2 weeks of pvp. Both pvp and pve take time to properly gear a character and only a few pieces are ultimately interchangable if you want to min/max your character.

And also, if you aren't seriously raiding, you don't need good raiding gear, if you aren't seriously pvping, you don't need good pvp gear. Good players can get to a decent level just as quickly either way.

Bell said...

@usherai - thanks for the breakdown :) I agree with you entirely!