Bashing some 40s: the role of scenarios in WAR.

With the holiday season over, things are getting back to normal with WAR, specifically meaning more CoW members are back online. While overall WAR is a great MMO, it’s very average when played solo for extended periods of time, so having quality people back online has been great.

Of particular note was a recent Serpents Pass scenario that our group of 6 rank 35-36 characters queued up for. Once inside, we quickly realized Order had all rank 40 characters save two, and Destro had exactly two 40s, with the rest in our range of 35-36. Generally this means a 500-0 or so final score, and the dominant side camping your spawn point. As our group had just finished Bastion Stairs, we had a good balance of tank/healer/dps. The group consisted of a Chosen, a Zealot, two DoK, a Sorceress, and a Witch Elf. For the first time in Serpents Pass, we used strategy beyond ‘rush to the middle, fight, repeat’. We knew we could not win a head to head clash, and our only chance would be to divide up the enemy and pick them off as best we could.

Serpents Pass is well designed for such a strategy, giving you ample opportunity to cut across the map and kill the carrier, or harass anyone who respawns. In addition, scoring the wreckage piece can easily overcome the kill count, making sacrificing a tank worthwhile if it slows the enemy down. Our strategy was a mix of quick grab and run tactics with the wreckage when Order was busy fighting, and picking off their carrier when they controlled the center. What made this work was the over-confidence that once the wreckage was picked up, it could be run back safely. In most games, the enemy makes a weak-at-best attempt to kill the carrier, yet in this game we were sending a full group. We also did our best not to engage the full might of the Order group, and more often then not this meant Order pushed Destruction back near our spawn point, yet could not pin us down completely. Once we pushed them back, we would run and grab the wreckage, making a quick dash back while leaving behind a few players to stall the respawning Order players.

The end score was 500-300 for Destro, despite many of the Order players toping the damage chart. It was a highly enjoyable scenario, and showed that strategy and communication can, at times, overcome sheer force. This also happens in T1-T3 of RvR, yet T4 is mostly mass chaos with macro management becoming a factor, rather than micro. I’m not entirely convinced this is a major problem, as it’s hard to retain the epic feel of a relic raid from DAoC and also include 6 man group tactics as a major factor. Scenarios will always be the place for small group tactics (like roving 8s were in DAoC), and the RvR T4 campaign SHOULD have that DAoC relic raid feel. Scenarios deliver, and hopefully the T4 portion of RvR will soon as well.

About SynCaine

Former hardcore raider turned casual gamer.
This entry was posted in Dark Age of Camelot, MMO design, PvP, RvR, Warhammer Online. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Bashing some 40s: the role of scenarios in WAR.

  1. Remastered says:

    It should be noted that the Chosen was the lynchpin in the Destruction victory…

  2. Snafzg says:

    If that’s the case, I won’t be participating in much oRvR because 3 WBs vs. 3 WBs isn’t even remotely my idea of fun. I’m hoping there will be 6-man groups that splinter off from the zerg once more 40s get established. That’s what happened in DAOC anyway.

  3. syncaine says:

    Happened in DAoC because it had no other outlet, scenarios in WAR are that outlet. No 8man ever took a relic in DAoC :)

    The Chosen was the weak link, but at least it took the other side a second to drop his high hp zero effectiveness ass.

  4. Snafzg says:

    Well, up until max rank you had the battleground instances in DAOC but yeah, once you hit max rank there were no “balanced” options. And no 8-man ever took a relic but they did have an effect on open world RvR and the unlocking of DF. Our 8-man could ninja, claim, and defend a keep quite well in DAOC. Defense would be near impossible vs. the zergs of WAR but constantly preventing the enemy from locking a zone by capping back undefending BFOs would definitely be a possibility if more people actually did it.

    I’m kind of torn with scenarios… I love the fact that they are balanced (though I much prefer the 12v12 rather than 18+v18+) but hate the fact that they take place in an instance and have little impact on the open world goings on.

    I’m going to try my hardest to get 1-2 6-man groups going on my server and if it doesn’t happen, I can’t imagine myself sticking around for long. No sense trying to bend a game to fit my ideals.

    Guild Wars 2 is looking pretty good these days! :P

  5. syncaine says:

    One group has a tough time making an impact, but one warband (which I still think is manageable if its a guild-only wb) can be huge in T4. A smart guild can defend a keep for a long time even with only 24, and buy enough time for the zerg to clean up the rest of the zone. Same goes for objectives. But yea, T4 tactics are still evolving, as is T4 itself. I’ll be surprised if once everything stabilizes, smaller elite groups don’t make an impact. The technical issues, and the newness of the game, are the main problems right now.

    GW2 is looking good because we don’t know much about it yet. All MMOs sound awesome on a website :)

  6. Snafzg says:

    ROFL – too true. I learned that lesson just recently! *cough cough* :P

  7. I would like to think well organised guild groups can make a difference, otherwise this game maynot be what I am after. It does depend on what impact BO’s come to have, since they could end up being the “Keep” objectives for small groups.

    If BOs come to be more important in keep takes, then the opposing side will have to leave “teams” at each BO to hold it while the keep is taken. Hopefully the promise of small group action will hold those groups there. Here’s dreaming anyway.

  8. I am still hoping that BO’s come to have an impact on the strength of the keep doors, say 10% reduction per BO taken (You can say the doors “Magical Wards” are weakend). This will make them more important in quicker keep takes.

  9. Khardamon says:

    Yup that was a fun night and a great scenario. In fact, only members of our group I believe ever capped the part. So technically if we had not been part of that scenario Destro might have lost horribly.

    Also of note, and you alluded to it, was that every time Order got the part we did everything we could just to DELAY the carrier, even if we couldn’t kill them. We had them waste enough time that toward there end there was no way they could make up that lost ground.

    Oh and the Sorc in that group is hawt…

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