Monday, February 28, 2011

Arenas and Rated BG Experience - A Healthy Relationship

This is what Mr. Bigglesworth Got for Doing Arenas

In our rated BGs, we have started requiring an arena requirement in 3 vs. 3 or 5 vs. 5 of 1100 for all our rated BG members.  (Yes, we are recruiting for the rest of this season and next season.  See sidebar for more.)  The reason we are requiring this rating is because all of the BG leaders, myself included, see the value of having arena experience in rated BGs.  However, I also see the value of having rated BG experience in arenas.  Here are the links that I personally see between arena and rated BGs.

Arena Experience in Rated BGs

1) CC - Playing in arena gets you used to your different forms of CC.  For druids, we only have 2 plus one ability we can combine with roots.  However, it gives the experience of when to use the CC and when not to. Having experience with this in arenas will directly translate to being able to do it in a rated BG setting.

2) Focus Firing - A major part of arena is learning to focus fire.  Not only focus firing, but also being able to CC while focus firing.  This takes a lot of using focus frames, finding targets quickly, and changing targets quickly.  All of this experience in arena will help in rated BGs where you have to do many of the same things.

3) LOS - While learning how to use line of sight is vital in arenas, there are not a lot of times you can use it in rated BGs.  When you can though, it helps out.  Let me give an example from our rated BGs.  We were in a Twin Peaks.  We had the enemy flag and they had ours.  Our flag carrier had 3 healers with him.  In each of the bases of Twin Peaks, there are several places you can use line of site.  You can go upstairs, around the walls, around the outside, etc.  This was vital in keeping our flag carrier up.  Being able to line of sight in arenas is critical and comes in handy occassionally during rated BGs. 

4) Cooldown Management - The difference between a win and a loss in a closely contested arena match could be when a trinket is ready to proc and how it is utilized.  If you are busy applying CC, you may want to wait a few seconds before popping your trinket while you control the enemy.  However, there are more than trinket cooldowns.  You also have to think about healer cooldowns.  For example, if you are a resto druid, if you see another healer go down in a rated BG, that may be the time to pop Tree of Life to keep your flag carrier up until the other healer can come back in.  When to use cooldowns is something you learn initially in the small scale arenas and then apply it to the large scale rated BGs.

5) Calling Targets - If you see a priest, a mage, and a rogue, do you know who you should kill first?  Well, if you do arenas, you should.  First, you look at their HP.  Is anybody a little less than the others?  If they are, that may indicate some PvE gear on that person which means their resilience is less.  Are they controllable?  A priest would probably be the easiest to CC since mages can blink out of snares and rogues can get out of combat and go invisible.  What do you have available to you?  If you have lots of CC, you may want to CC the mage and rogue while you burn the priest.  If you don't, you may want to CC the priest and kill the mage.  While this is a typical arena setting, there are many times where you run into identical situtions in rated BGs.  Doing arena helps with target calling.

Rated BG Experience In Arenas

1) Saving Fights - In arenas, you usually have a designated healer.  In BGs, there may be times that you don't have a healer in your group.  If that is the case, you better know what abilities can save yourself.  Do you have a melee on you, pop Thorns and pop Nature's Grasp and root him while you heal yourself.  Are you running with a group and you are all in trouble?  Pop Tranquility and heal them.  While you see more of this in rated BGs, this knowledge can come in handy in arenas.

2) Different Comps - While in arena, you see some popular comps like mage, rogue, priest.  In rated BGs, you see comps that you wouldn't normally see anywhere in arena.  However, this is when you can practice against those odd comps.  For example, you never usually see a 4 healer, 1 DPS comp in arenas.  However, if you are trying to get the flag back in Warsong or Twin Peaks, you may run into that exact comp.  This will give you a broader experience on what different classes can bring to the table, classes that you may only see once in a while in arenas.  This experience can help you in arenas when you face similar compositions.

3)  Field Awareness - Arenas are smaller scale.  Usually, you can see what is going on pretty easily.  However, in rated BGs, you may need to know what is going on at the other side of the field.  For example, if you are in the middle trying to control the enemy from getting to your flag and you see people break off towards your flag carrier, you may need to go assist your flag carrier.  You are not doing anybody any good if you are in the middle and just keep killing things while your flag carrier is going down.  This translates to arena since you may need to get people off of your healer or give yourself some extra time or heal somebody while a healer is CCed.

So as you can see, doing arenas in addition with rated BGs can give you a lot of benefits for both.  I would encourage you to do both to become a well rounded PvPer.

Also, for winners of the Header contest.  I have not forgotten you.  I have  had a lot of stuff going on lately, but I should be sending them out by the end of this week.          

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