It’s amazing what a little motivation can do.
Yesterday was the first day of Warhammer Online’s current event, The Witching Night, and so far it looks to be a hit. It’s not perfect, but it’s a huge step in the right direction to get WAR away from a scenario grind and more about… well war.
I logged in at around 7pm EST to Thorgrim (mid/low pop), and flew over to Troll Country with my Rank 21 Disciple of Khaine. Checking in with CoW, most of the guild was in tier 3, and I got a quick status report from people saying the event was happening and they had some RvR action going. Good sign.
When I arrived at the tier 2 warcamp, I saw 8-10 Order players camping the entrance to the RvR area, and after gathering 3 other players, we charged them, killed a Bright Wizard (got to love squishies), and all died. Regrouping back at the camp, we noticed that the battlefield objective closest to us, and on the other side of the main entrance, was Order controlled. We figured we can try to take that and hopefully draw some Order players to us, rather than charge back and continue to give up a 4/1 kill ratio. The reason we figured this would give us a better chance than heading out into the open field was due to the objective being located in a crypt, with the tight hallways and stairs limiting movement, allowing our tanks to block the hall and even out the fight a bit. Sadly after we took the objective, no Order players showed up, so all that strategery for nothing!
As we took the objective and waited for it to cap, our warband had grown from 4 players to around 10, so we headed out into the open field to even things up with that Order group that got us before. Being the good reliable fools that they were, we found them still sitting near our camps entrance, and charged them again. This time, with the numbers a bit more even, we crushed them decisively. During the fight I noticed some serious tactical mistakes on their part. As we were hammering on their healers and other soft targets, I noticed more than half of them targeting the tanks we had sent in first. With good healing standing back, our tanks shrugged off the incoming damage, and the even fight soon turned into a rout.
After the battle, I noticed the RvR PQ had popped up, with the score 18/12 (out of the 100 kills needed) in favor of Order. Guess that little group had been picking people off for a bit, and this was the first real gathering of Destruction players. We got into a few more big battles, but for some reason as time went on, our warband grew in size (at one point it was a full 24 people), while the Order group got smaller. With the PQ at 50/100 or so for us, and all the objectives captured, we decided to take a break from RvR (Order was just hiding in their warcamp) and head up to knock out the Troll Lord PQ in chap 8 Chaos.
As we got into the woods, we noticed ghosts popping in and out. After finally killing one, we noticed we were getting influence and credit towards the world event, allowing us to continue progress even though Order had given up the fight. We took down the Troll Lord (one tough bastard, even for a warband), killed a bunch of ghosts, and returned to the RvR area. Order had put together another warband, and managed to capture back an objective. Sadly their group was still smaller than ours (damn population balance), and we quickly rolled them again.
This did however end up giving us enough kills to finish the first part of the new PQ. The second and final stage spawns a giant skeleton, Lord status, in the RvR area. At Rank 18 however, he did not prove too much of a challenge for our almost full warband, and went down quickly, dropping a chest with a gold, purple, and multiple green bags. The PQ reset, but did not come back for close to 2 hours or so. We ended the night after a few more skirmishes with some Order players, but sadly they never gathered enough to give us a real fight. Come on out and player you little bastards!
That wrapped up the first night, and overall it was a great time. An impressive number of Destruction players showed up, came and went, and everyone was just enjoying the RvR action, even if we never got a bigger group of Order to show up. Hopefully going forward, more players hear about the event and head over to check it out.
Lastly I want to mention one major issue, because like I said, although the event overall is great, it’s not perfect. Limiting the PQ to just the Troll Country RvR zone is awful. As soon as you cross over into Ostland (the zone below Troll Country) you stop getting credit for the PQ, and as the line between Ostland and Troll Country is invisible, it makes it very frustrating when you are trying to advance the PQ. In addition to that issue, the areas around a Keep and objectives also do not count towards the PQ, further frustrating players. The PQ should just cover the entire RvR lake, and I hope this is hot fixed shortly, as it really does limit the PQ unnecessarily. The two hour or so cooldown on the PQ is also a strange decision. I understand you don’t want players maxing out on influence too quickly, but I think a shorter cooldown is needed, or at least add a visible timer for when the PQ will be available.
Issues aside, The Witching Night has taken a much needed step for Warhammer and given players more reason to head out into the RvR areas and mix it up. This is the correct path for the game, and I fully expect Mythic to continue down it. Back to the battlefield tonight!