And Now an Empire Public Service Announcement…

Ok, I’m anything but 1337 when it comes to these things, and scenarios in WAR so far have been overall pretty fun–even the horrible losses which have been fortunately few.

I took a few days off for RL constraints (and to generate more rested XP!) so imagine how appalled I was tonight when our former crack Order lowbies which just this last weekend seems like they couldn’t LOSE a T1 match (or few at least out of dozens and dozens) couldn’t tell a battlefield objective from a hole in the ground…

How quickly things change.

Now I’m not Bill Murray in Stripes (nor Sargent Hulka for that matter), but MY GOD, where’s Empire’s DIGNITY?  Okay, maybe I just drew short straws all night as I was playing my rune priest mostly in Nordenwatch, but friends it was ugly.  The scenarios were popping almost as fast as you could queue them, but it was fugly.  Short bus fugly.  Vanguard dwarf fugly.  That dude in the Hills Have Eyes fugly.  Lyle Lovett-Michelle Shocked love child fugly.  Supreme Court repeals the 22nd Amendment and Bush wins a third term FUGLY.  You get my point.

So, in the interest of being a candle in the night rather than cursing the darkness, I offer these observations about the Nordenwatch Tier 1 scenario which apparently may not be in the broader public consciousness.

The Basics:

First team to 500 points wins.  Supposedly the team with the most points when 15 minutes expires also wins, but for some reason I’ve seen them continue beyond 15 minutes….

A player or players must be near a flag to capture that objective.  Unlike WoW, you cannot simply tag and move on.  Enemy players near the flag slow that progress down.

You can tell if you’re near enough to a flag if a progress bar appears on either side of the objective’s icon in the upper right of your UI (near your minimap).

To capture a flag controlled by the other side, the progress bar must recede from their color (Chaos=Red; Order=Blue); change to neutral, then proceed through your faction’s color.  This takes some time.  If you’re close enough, you can watch the progress bar move.

Each control point held by a faction generates points for that faction.  All control points don’t generate victory points at the same rate.  The Fortress (in the middle) generates more points faster that either the Barrack (Chaos side) or the Lighthouse (Order).

The winning team gets a substantial XP and renown bonus.  It varies, but a high contributing winning team member may take away 6000-8000 xp while a high contributing losing team member may only take away 2000-4000 xp.  Your mileage may vary and the more lopsided the score the worse the disparity gets.

If you don’t DO SHIT and your TEAM doesn’t DO SHIT, you get SHIT for xp and renown.  Coffee is for closers.  Role file footage of Alec Baldwin (NSFW).  Not that you need to win, but a close match is good for everyone while a lopsided one is very bad for one side.

A few things to consider:

If NO ONE stays at a flag, it will not progress, nor will it change to your side.

If you are TOO FUCKING FAR FROM THE FLAG, it will not progress, nor will it change to your side.

Basic logic says, if you hold “your” flag and they hold “their” flag, then the team that controls the Fortress longest will win the scenario.

A few observations and suggestions:

God and Mark Jacobs and that other annoying British guy gave us collision detection.  For those in the back of the room, that means that a player can block another player and (gasp) either impede their movement or shield their brethren with their bodies.  Tanks can, uh, tank.  Fo rizzle.  Stepping in front of someone may be the most significant contribution you could make for your team.

Fight at the GODDAMNED flag.  Not everyone needs to, but everyone needs to support the people there!  The basic opening for this scenario is a) secure your flag then b) race to the fort (there are minor modifications, but this is always “Plan A”).  The more people there, the faster it caps (or resists capping by the enemy).

Don’t forget to cap YOUR OWN GODDAMNED FLAG.  Its frankly embarraskin when the Fort caps an you and the enemy notice  your own flag is uncapped and unguarded.

When Order stops at the bridge and NOBODY actually goes to the flag because OOH THERE ARE ORCS AND RASPUTIN AND YODAS AND SARAH PALIN THERE, the scenario is lost.

In the interest of equal time, when Chaos stops on the ramp to the Fortress because OOH DANNY DEVITO AND ORLANDO BLOOM AND DOZENS OF CARROT TOP IMPERSONATORS are there, the scenario is lost.

Every scenario we won, we fought within range of the flag and in the midst of the pitched battle, LO AND BE FUCKING HOLD, the fortress capped.  After a brief “huzzah” we would then go on to push the Barracks, defend the inevitable Lighthouse counter assault, and guard the Fortress like it was Omaha, Juno and Sword beach which it was and is.

Every scenario we lost, we fought on the bridge, on the rocks or FOR THE LOVE OF SIGMAR on the ramp down from the flag and well out of its range.  The hearbreak of psoriasis is nothing like the heartbreak of seeing your team actually defeat the initial wave of attackers only to see the fortress remain uncapped as they respawn and return for a second assault.

I’ve played squishies (Archmage, Rune Priest, Bright Wizard), I’ve played tanks (Iron Breaker), I’ve played the in betweens (e.g., Witch Hunter, Warrior Priest, White Lion and Engineer) and group career make up doesn’t really change the equation too much.  Yes, you need some healing, yes, you need some tanking, but you don’t need dedicated ones if you just stick to the basics.

Remember, for every scenario we lose, Mythic creates another Elf career.

18 thoughts on “And Now an Empire Public Service Announcement…”

  1. Oh dear — sound slike you make have too many combat journalists (just there for the photo-op) and too few actual Fighting Persons.

    Ought you to consider hiring either a) Zerglets, or b) Goonswarm(TM) to … reinforce your argument ?

  2. Don’t hold back, tell us how ya really feel… :p~

    Nordenwatch is the only T1 scenario that ever pops so I’m getting tired of it and have never even seen the other two.

    I’m also not really “getting” the whole collision detection thing. These scenarios are open-world territories, not narrow hallways in some urban skirmish FPS. So you can block the enemy from running through you. So? You can’t stop them from simply side-stepping around you. At which point they get to ME the healer.

    It would be one thing if these were “Massive PvP” battles, but they’re not. Nordenwatch is 12v12. There would never be enough tanks to block anyone from getting to the rest of us.

    On top of that I still can’t get the retarded UI to work to PROPERLY show me both Scenario Parties so I can help heal people not in my Scenario Party.

  3. “Remember, for every scenario we lose, Mythic creates another Elf career.”

    ::shudder:: Do what he says…DO WHAT HE SAYS!!!

  4. I was on the train reading this post on my lame blackberry and i have to say i almost spit my energy drink out. Very funny stuff, and all very true. In fact im surprised you used to win at all in tier1, seems i never do on order

  5. @Talyn – You would be surprised how effective (or annoying, when it happens to you) a simple block can be. You can side step it, but unless you were paying close attention, you probably came to a complete halt, your target (that healer you were trying to squash) probably got a few steps out in front of you, enough for another heal, and now you have to catch up again. A small victory, by one that has turned the tide. Things that counter mobility in a melee battle should not be discounted.

    And in later scenarios, where you have to catch some guy carrying the football or relic, or pacifier, or whatever, a good block can make the round.

    I’ve been in some of these rounds with Potshot where it has been all I could do to not become that annoying guy telling everybody where to go and how to play. The one that everybody hates, ignores, or deliberately does the opposite of what he says. Instead I try to lead by example, and often die alone, the only person within capping range of the flag.

    The best/worst one was the other night when four bright wizards stood shoulder to shoulder on the bridge, blocking all traffic while destro got chopped up but capped the fort. I had to jump off the cliff and come up the ramp with my ironbreaker to get in close to the flag, only die alone at the flag.

  6. All tongue in cheek of course. And like Wil, I just wont turn into that “giving everyone orders” guy. Lead by example. Mostly the scenarios move too fast to carry on real tactical conversations other than “inc fort”.

    On the good side, even in the worst of the worst, there has been a wonderful lack of negative smack talk. Literally, only one or two scenarios all weekend where some presumably adolescent(-minded, at least) was going on about the “way to go, noobs, we just lost, etc.” I just put him on ignore and the rest of us battled back to win the scenario.

    But, until last night I had never seen such lopsided scores where Empire was unable to hold even one flag… I knew we were in trouble when everyone except for one intrepid engineer proceeded to chase Destruction down the ramp and toward the barracks when neither the lighthouse nor fort had been capped…

    In re collision detection: I can’t tell you how many times I’ve just stuck a Marauder dead in his tracks by just stepping in front of him. Sure he’s delayed by only a few seconds as he has to maneuver around you and with a head fake or two he might be tied up for 10 or 15 seconds.

    You’d be surprised what a few seconds will buy a BW or RP. Its not the All Star Game, you gotta play D.

    I’m not talking shield wall stuff, but if you make your opponent react to you, you’re changing the game. I love wedging myself between a melee guy and his squishy target. Half the time he gets frustrated and switches targets and thats the whole point.

  7. “In re collision detection: I can’t tell you how many times I’ve just stuck a Marauder dead in his tracks by just stepping in front of him. Sure he’s delayed by only a few seconds as he has to maneuver around you and with a head fake or two he might be tied up for 10 or 15 seconds. ”

    That’s why I’m actually looking forward to being a PvP tank. I don’t have the reflexes anymore to hit some bizaar, uber-damage button combination in a .25 second opening during combat but I think I can wedge my way inbetween players alright. I mean I get in the way all the time, now I’ll just be doing something useful while I’m at it. :)

  8. @Thallian: Thanks for the explanation. That makes sense.

    @Khan: The older I get, the more I appreciate a game that puts value on making yourself an obstacle. ;)

  9. @Talyn: As a healer, I hate that UI as well. Selecting players not in your specific group out of a furball is a challenge to say the least.

    One thing I did do is remap the target nearest friendly to the ~ key so I can cycle offensive and defensive targets quickly and easily. At least you can cycle quickly and slap HoTs on anyone having damage. Still not perfect but better than that horrible overlay thing.

  10. Also: note to Witch Hunters and Witch Elves*. This is not WoW. Circle strafing while jumping up and down like a retarded monkey does nothing but reduce your dps. You can’t jump through people and make them lose line-of-sight. You can’t cause their attacks to miss. They’re not going to be impressed by your mad leet jumping skillz. They’re going to laugh at you for being idiots while pivoting in place and out-dps you with just about anything.

    Thank you.

    *Unless you’re playing on the other team, in which case you can ignore this message, thanks.

  11. This is exactly what I told my guildmates when we went into the scenarios and kept losing, and they asked “hmm, how come we come so close but lose every time?” They kept doing some stupid clockwise run through all the objectives without defending, and of course we got our asses handed to us as Destruction capped and defended the flags. We didn’t have time to get any back.

    Of course my guild, being casual, waved me off when I told them about defending. “We’re just doing this for fun,” they told me. And then proceeded to bitch and moan and whine about losing.

    Fuck that.

  12. Lol. I’m all for having fun and being casual. But if you’re using the checkers to play tiddly winks, yur doin it wrong…

    What’s more casual than playing some D? ;) That’s why I play casters most of the time… stand around most of th time, tab targeting and pew pew, let the battle come to you…

  13. Remember the ABC’s of Nordenwatch.

    Always Be Capping!

    If you’re fighting off the pin, pull back. There is nothing worth keeping down the fairway.

    Second place gets steak knives.

  14. Friends dont let friends PUG T1. Too many new people playing. Too many potential pack-o-losers who never learned to play WSG or EOS in Warcraft. You didn’t really think they were going to win a clue and play better in Warhammer did ya? *Pats Pots head gently*

    After repeated loses in T1 on PUGs I stopped doing them. Open RVR or guild groups only and all my pain went away. We didn’t win all the time but it wasn’t the abysmal epic fail of T1 PUGs. I can’t tell you how many times I died at the feet of a healer doing pew-pew or saw Warrior Priest die without attempting to heal themselves even once! Nah, no PUG T1s for me, sir.

  15. LOL! Found your blog after clicking through a network of “blogrolls”, and I noticed the Nordenwatch map right away.

    I had much better luck in Nordenwatch than I have in anything T2, in fact I felt pretty well in control once I got used to it. Maybe it’s my level, I don’t know, but I’m about to quit my Shadow Warrior because after playing Phoenix Gate about 6 zillion times, my skills don’t seem to be made for anything but elaborately running away. And the other T2 scenarios? Yeah right…

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