Sunday, April 12, 2009

Omg, arena? Megs would be proud.

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Well, not that proud, seeing as how our rating right now is 1510 after about 50 games. Of course, the Megs I'm talking about is the infamous Braids/Rafa from Out of Mana - snarky warlock by day, chaste paladin by night. Sometimes I think they switch their times of day to mess people up. Anyway, she's a beast at arena, and her blog has been a nice guide for me as I enter the mystical world of 2v2. By "nice", I mean "hilarious, amazing, snort-milk-out-of-your-nose funny". Mmhmmm.

Another great blog that has good pvp advice is Taletha's blog, Useful Downtime. He also happens to be Ascended's raid leader. ^^ Ohai Tal!!

Anyway! Norda, who's one of our best PvE hunters (well, all of our hunters in Ascended are fantastic), was looking for a 2v2 partner. I had previously done some 2v2s, but hadn't in a while, and when Norda asked me if I wanted to make a 2s team, I couldn't pass up the offer. Our team name? "I has corns". No, we don't have problems with our feet. Imagine a small kitten eating an ear of corn, ok? There ya go. Teeny kitten! OM NOM SO CUTE.

A little basic information, for anyone who's curious.

  • I do arenas with a straight up PvE resto build - 11/0/60. Not the most efficient way to PvP, but I just haven't taken the time to look into a PvP build, and besides, 50g for respecs is quite a large chunk of change. Come 3.1, I'll be dual speccing PvE resto/PvP resto (I thought maybe I'd dual spec resto/bear, but I never go bear. I like having a decent gear set just in case, because I DO want to learn how to tank at some point, but right now, a PvE/PvP dual spec is more useful to me). It'll be neat to try out the new Barkskin talent.

  • I have a decent amount of PvP gear - nothing crazy awesome, but I've got 602 resil.

  • I've done 2v2s before, but only 10 games a week, and not every week. I'm very much a PvE girl - I love raids, being in a group, downing bosses, loot from bosses, all that stuff. So I really am new to all of this.

Things I have learned and/or need to work on and/or you all need to give me advice on:

  • Stealthing: almost always a good idea. Cat + prowl ftw. It keeps the other team guessing. They don't know if you're a rogue, a druid, or a random night elf that's shadowmelded. (If they're smart they'll look at our buffs and see MotW and thorns = drood, but hey, we can always hope they're not smart, right?) Sometimes though, if Norda and I were getting pissed off at a losing streak or something, we'd say screw it, mount up, careen right towards them and try to take them by surprise. Note: this only sometimes works. =P

  • Shift! I am very bad about using my forms to my advantage. I tried shifting into bear like, a total of two times, and I had Bash all at the ready to stun the guy, and the first time I got all turned around and couldn't get him in front of me, and the second time I didn't have enough rage. I probably didn't have enough rage the first time either. So I'm a shapeshifting nub. I gotta hit that Enrage button, Bash asap, and then shift out of bear. I'm still trying to get the hang of it. Can you macro that?

  • Don't be a noob: In the Ruins of Lordaeron, if you run out directly where the doors open in the middle, you'll do a face plant into a pillar. How many times has this happened to me? *cough* Well.

  • Lolrogues: I have a LOT of trouble with rogues. Here's what I do when I get stunned: Hit barkskin first and foremost, hit my pvp trinket if it's up, and if it's not up, or if I'm stunned again, I'll just spam click my Nature's Swiftness + Healing Touch macro and hope that it gets through before I'm dead. Sometimes I'll spam click my Nature's Grasp to try to root them after I get out of the stun so I can run away and heal, if I don't think I'll need the huge insant heal. Typically though, if a rogue stuns me and uses all his cooldowns effectively, I'm dead. Is there anything else I should be doing, other than getting more resilience on my gear?

  • Who to CC? Norda and I have gone back and forth on this so many times: should we CC the healer, or CC the dps? About 80% of the teams we saw were dps-healer teams. I think I could count the number of pure dps teams on one hand. We had a rogue/mage team, a mage/warlock team... and... I can't remember any others. Anyway. If you take the healer out of commission, then the dps is getting no heals, and theoretically should go down quickly. If you CC the dps, you can burn the healer down quickly (especially a clothie) (again, theoretically) without having to worry about taking too much damage, and then take care of the dps on your own terms after the heals are dead and gone. Is one strategy better than the other? We went back and forth so many times, I don't know. We did find that holy paladins are better off CCed (or did we? I forget), because their heals are so huge, and they can "reset" the fight by bubbling at low health and healing everything. If you CC the pally though, you really have to CC the crap out of him, otherwise he'll get off a heal here and there and it's just too much. Or should you try to burn him down asap? Bah. Any suggestions?

    Note: Paladins who are healers will have a huge mana pool - in the 15k range. Paladins who are ret specced will have a mana pool of around 5k or so. Just a little tip =)

  • LoS. Figuring out how to line-of-sight people is something I really need to work on. The very first arena Norda and I did together (a practice one) we had a holy paladin who had no partner in the Blade's Edge arena. That's right, 2v1. And, uh....WE COULDN'T KILL HIM. Every single time I tried to cast wrath, or roots, he'd go around a pillar. Up a ramp. Around a corner. He wasn't even trying to kill us - he was just trying to survive, and he was doing a damn good job at it. It was absolutely insane. He was probably laughing his ass off at us. In retrospect, it was pretty hilarious. After like 8 minutes of this, we had to manually leave the arena to end it, no joke. Wish I could take lessons from that dude.

  • Know how your 2v2 partner works. It's really important! Norda and I initially dropped down below a 1400 rating - we had a 1380 something I think. As we figured out how the other worked, we starting winning more, and now we're back up above 1500. I'm figuring out how to not pull the hordies out of his LoS, and he's figuring out that I might accidentally let a cyclone go through on that DK right after the paladin dies - so he should wait to use any big burst damage CDs he has til the cyclone immune effect fades. I'm learning how to adapt our strategy as the match progresses, too. We say CC the priest, but then I notice the priest's health plummeting - and realize that our plan has changed. I cyclone the rogue instead. Stuff like that.

  • OMFG, I love Cyclone. The only thing I love more than a cyclone is a chain of four solid cyclones. Bwuahahahah!!! My god, it feels good. Sometimes, just sometimes, I want to bind a macro that will make me laugh at the target every time they're cycloned. So I'd cyclone some dude named Pwnstarface four times in a row, and they'd be like "aw MAN, cycloned again? Wtf! Dammit! wait- what - did she just - she - OH NO SHE DI'INT" and in their chat box it's all like
    Averna laughs at Pwnstarface.
    Averna laughs at Pwnstarface.
    Averna laughs at Pwnstarface.
    Averna laughs at Pwnstarface.
    Oh my god. SO. AWESOME. I wouldn't though. I'm too nice. Plus, I'd be afraid it would piss them off SO much, that they'd start playing well and then really pwn us. Wouldn't want that, now would we!
Another neat thing: the add-on Proximo, or something similar, is a great help for any arena enthusiast. Basically it's a box that shows the health bars of your opponents, color coded based on class. It can also show what they're casting, which is nice when you want to interrupt a big heal, say.

The catch is, the opponents unit frame (health bar, basically) will only show up once you mouse over the physical player on your screen. So if you're against a stealther, you can't mouse over them, and therefore can't see them on your Proximo until they unstealth.

The truly amazing part is that you can set click-to-cast combos that will only work in arena, on Proximo. I have mine set to cyclone the player if I right-click their unit frame. It's fantastic.

Update: and now that I've done some research, it seems that this add-on hasn't been updated since November, and probably will continue to not be updated. Gladius is a decent alternative, and it looks even more customizable than Proximo is. I'll check it out some point soon and let you guys know.

So to all you arena people out there: any tips or advice you can give me? Any other add-ons you use? I'd love to hear from you!

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5 remarks:

J├╝rgen said...

Arena sounds like a lot of fun, can't wait until I hit 80 to try and start doing arena's too. Thanks for the post, good stuff!

Smartteaus said...

Stealthing is pretty good, but in some situations its better to go out in tree form will a full set of hots. I usually do this when I run into dual stealthies. The risk of getting jumped in cat form without hots pretty much leads to instant death...even with 800 resil.

Megan said...

Thanks for the linklove.

Here's a new post of mine in response that might help you out:

http://outofmana.blogspot.com/2009/04/line-of-sight-101-part-i.html

Happy hunting.

Dorgol said...

Here's an only-barely-on-topic-but-wanted-to-share comment:

Cyclone can be used to great fun in AV. Wait for the enemy team to open up on one of those group bosses and then Cyclone the tank. Since the tank is Immune the boss will go crazy wild on the next target on the threat list - which as we all know is going to be that Mage or Warlock back in the back who is standing next to a healer and will probably drop aggro as quickly as possible causing the healer to die and then another and another and another.

Even better if you can do this as a NE and then immediately drop into Shadowmeld. There's an even chance that in all the chaos no one will have seen you - so when someone else tries to tank the boss you can DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN.

Yes, we all love Cyclone. :)

Anonymous said...

I've been running rdruid/ret for a few weeks now, and after starting at 1100 we've climbed up to 1600+.

The first thing my partner and I do in 2v2 is identify the other team composition.

If it's likely that we're facing a rogue, I'll ditch stealth and pop into tree form and cast:
1) rejuv
2) abolish
3) lifebloom

Rogues can't sap trees, so they'll often try to sap my partner. If the rogue jumps me with all of my buffs on, he won't get anywhere fast.

The most important thing is to not panic and do not trinket out of cheap shot. Cheap shot is only ~2 seconds stun. If he follows up with Kidney Shot, trinket that if you need to, as it can last an additional ~5 seconds.

Against double dps (rogue/rogue, rogue/feral, rogue/mage etc), once you live through the first opening, you've pretty much won.

The harder combo we've faced is rogue/priest which has really good synergy. The rogue will often reset with vanish after the opening, but vanish is on a long CD, so if you can endure a second opening barrage, the rogue will become an easy target; if you can keep away from mana burn (by sitting in bear) viper sting and their lack of poison dispel will be their downfall.