Secret Design of WoW PvE: PvP vs PvE

The series: [Intro­duc­tion, and a call for com­ments, Solo Dif­fi­cul­ty vs Group Dif­fi­cul­ty, PvE vs PvP, Vari­ety vs Spe­cial­iza­tion, Solo Per­former vs Group Util­i­ty, Your role in a PvE raid]

No class is glob­al­ly bet­ter at PvP than every oth­er class. WoW PvP is a huge rock-paper-scis­sor game, where there’s an answer for every move, or in WoW’s case, Class A always feels over­pow­ered to an oppo­nent of Class B, Class B over Class C, and Class C over Class A. (except expand­ed out to an 11-way graph) While no class is uni­ver­sal­ly dom­i­nant in PvP, some builds are uni­ver­sal­ly bet­ter than oth­er builds in that envi­ron­ment.

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Secret Design of WoW PvE: Solo Difficulty vs Group Difficulty

The series: [Intro­duc­tion, and a call for com­ments, Solo Dif­fi­cul­ty vs Group Dif­fi­cul­ty, PvE vs PvP, Vari­ety vs Spe­cial­iza­tion, Solo Per­former vs Group Util­i­ty, Your role in a PvE raid]

Your abil­i­ty to solo par­tial­ly deter­mines the expe­ri­ence you’ll have in groups. If you have an easy time in the lev­el­ing game, you are going to have a more dif­fi­cult expe­ri­ence in the endgame/group game. The fol­low­ing list goes from easy-to-solo to hard-to-solo.

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Secret Design of WoW PvE: Introduction, and a call for comments

The series: [Intro­duc­tion, and a call for com­ments, Solo Dif­fi­cul­ty vs Group Dif­fi­cul­ty, PvE vs PvP, Vari­ety vs Spe­cial­iza­tion, Solo Per­former vs Group Util­i­ty, Your role in a PvE raid]

It occurred to me that peo­ple who haven’t been group­ing or raid­ing a lot don’t know what role var­i­ous class­es have in a raid, or of class design in gen­er­al. You can go read the page on the world­ofwar­craft web­site, but they make every class sound equal­ly great at every­thing. That’s just not the real­i­ty of it. So I can keep com­plain­ing about how many peo­ple get stuck between lit­tle knowl­edge and expand­ed knowl­edge, or I can take my shot at fix­ing it via expla­na­tion.

If you don’t know how a par­tic­u­lar char­ac­ter or spec of a char­ac­ter fits into the group game that fol­lows the lev­el­ing game, this is for you.

It’s pos­si­ble to find out every­thing I’m about to write from var­i­ous places online, but as far as I know, there’s not one place where it’s all con­nect­ed. Most arti­cles are writ­ten from the point of view of one class or anoth­er; every guide is writ­ten by that class, for that class.

This is going to be the top lev­el view, how raid lead­ers (and pos­si­bly Bliz­zard design­ers) look at class­es and their role in the game.

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Max level does not mean Skilled

(Relat­ed post: Raid­ing does not mean Skilled)

World of War­craft, and every game like it, is real­ly two dif­fer­ent games. I first read this thought at Pen­ny Arcade (can’t find where because their search func­tion is weak). Basi­cal­ly, you have the lev­el­ling game where you start at L1 and then play until max lev­el (cur­rent­ly L70), and then the game that hap­pens after the lev­el­ling game, which is filled with group activ­i­ties of all sorts as you improve your max lev­el char­ac­ter.

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Small Group Raiding in WotLK

As Bliz­zard announced last week, every WotLK raid will have a small-raid (10-man) option.

So if there are (guess­ing) four endgame raids at launch, each will have a 10 and 25 man ver­sion, cre­at­ing a com­plete­ly par­al­lel path to the cur­rent 25-man raid­ing stan­dard. Every sub­se­quent patched-in raid will fol­low the same design. No more of this “two raids for small group raid­ing, eight raids for big group raid­ing”. All 10-man raids will be able to phys­i­cal­ly vis­it every raid instance, see every boss, gear up and progress along a sim­i­lar path, and ulti­mate­ly see the entire expan­sion.

This is like ice cream in dig­i­tal form. Strike that, this is like a pack of ice cream wolves wear­ing ice cream shoul­der-can­nons run­ning through the streets, shoot­ing ice cream fire­works every­where. This is sim­ply the best news since the game was released.

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