Thursday, February 7, 2008


On a good day, a few games in Battlegrounds are excellent fun. They're done quickly, the action is fast and furious, and the ultimate honor point rewards are very good. Obviously having a decent set of PvP gear helps (200 resilience, woot!) but there's plenty anyone can do to help win the day, even if one's gear is lacking.

The fly in the ointment is the rampancy of premade groups (mostly Alliance in my Bloodlust battlegroup), where a number of players from one server form a team and join a battleground together. This as an idea is fine, as running battlegrounds with your mates is a core gameplay concept, and one Blizzard loves. The problem arises when premades are dialed up to their logical conclusion, with awesome PvP gear, a vent server, balanced class makeup, and razor-sharp strategy. Here's an example, where we didn't manage to score even a single point:

This is like going down to park on a Sunday with your mates to play social soccer, and having a team of guys turn up in uniforms, with a coach, and beat you 26-0. I suppose congratulations are in order, but neither team really got a lot out of the game, and when this happens game after game, it tends to sully the experience. Then by accident, I ended up as an extra with a Horde premade against an Alliance premade, and this happened:

The entire team left! Man, that's weak - they realized that another premade would be more of a challenge than a hapless team of randoms, so they left and chose to eat the Deserter debuff instead. Another day I joined a premade with some friends from a previous guild, and we came up against another premade:

Now, this Alliance team didn't leave. In fact, this was the best bloody fight I'd had in ages. Bodies were everywhere, bases were capped, stolen, defended, recapped, special teams would attack, feint, fall back, link up and attack in waves. We narrowly lost the game in the end, but it really was great fun. This is the way premades should be played - they should be matched up with other premades, and earn bonus honor points. Premades are tougher than pugs, so they should be rewarded accordingly.

Until this happens, I suppose I'm stuck with premades, although it does create perhaps the most satisfying feeling in the game - beating a premade with a pug. Ooooh, that's gotta hurt.

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