Cataclysm Battlegrounds are the latest thing to hit the World of Warcraft. Here's an overview of the information that you need to know. If you're looking for strategies and in-depth analysis of each BG focusing on terrain, tactics and more then click the banner for the BG you're interested in to be transferred to the strategy guide for that particular Battleground!
When you fight in a Battleground in Cataclysm you will earn Honor Points and Conquest Points. What are Conquest Points you ask? Basically they're the replacement for Arena Points. They're earned only through Rated Arenas, Rated Battlegrounds, and through completing the Daily Random Battleground. They are what buys you the best gear. Honor Points are for everything else.
When you accumulate these points you're going to want to spend them. You can find vendors in Stormwind in the southern part of Old Town and in Orgrimmar in a fortress at the southeastern part of the Valley of Spirits. Cataclysm PvP vendors will be in-game as soon as Arena Season 9 begins!
If you're new to the game and confused about getting queued up into the battlegrounds you're probably still using the default UI. Try pressing "h" on your keyboard to bring up the PvP interface. Here you'll be able to monitor your Honor and Conquest points, queue for BGs, and monitor your statistics in Rated BGs and Arenas.
Weekly BGs, Daily Bgs, Weekend BGs!?!
Blizzard's system of extra incentives for playing Battlegrounds can be a bit confusing sometimes. Here's the lowdown: we'll start with Rated BGs. Rated Battlegrounds operate on a one week on, one week off schedule that alternates between 10 and 15 player BGs. If it's a 10 player week for Rated BGs then you're only allowed to queue for those. When you queue up with your 10 friends you'll be placed in a random 10 player battleground to duke it out with another team. The next week it'll be 15 players only and the week after that.... well you get the idea.
The Daily Battleground is a special built-in quest that gives you bonus honor, gold, and some Conquest Points after your first victory in a battleground each day.
The "BG Weekend" is a tradition dating back to Vanilla WoW. Each weekend a specific battleground is given special rewards equivalent to that of the Daily Battleground quest except that it's repeatable. These weekends are great times to earn copious amounts of honor or simply to enjoy fast queue times on your favorite battleground when its weekend comes up. Make sure to note though that while the honor reward for winning on the weekend battleground may stay the same you will not continue to earn Conquest Points for subsequent victories.
Format: Large scale PvP, variable numbers of participants based on how many queue on either team.
Located off the Western shores of Gilneas, Tol Barad can be thought of as Cataclysms equivalent of Wrath of the Lich Kings Wintergrasp. Every two hours players will engage in a struggle over control of this zone and the Baradin Hold raid instance beneath it.
Tol Barads objective is for the team on offense to control three crucial King-of-the-Hill style nodes: The Slagworks, Ironclad Garrison, and Wardens Vigil. In order for control of Tol Barad to change hands all three of these nodes must be under the control of the offense at once.
There are three towers on the periphery of the area which can be destroyed to extend the duration of the battle, but this remains an up-hill battle for the offense under the current design of the battleground.
Players can reach Tol Barad and join in the battle in two ways. You can queue through the battleground queuing interface when the battle is close to beginning or you can teleport to Tol Barad from Orgrimmar or Stormwind. When you use the Capital City teleporter it will take you to the north peninsula of Tol Barad where there are lots of daily quests, youll have to hike down to the southern area across the bridge which is where the battle takes place.
Format: 10 vs 10 capture the flag.
This new battleground is a homage to the undeniable success of World of Warcrafts first battleground: Warsong Gulch. Twin Peaks boasts a format identical to that of Warsong.
Twin Peaks takes place in the valley connecting Grim Batol to the Twilight Highlands and youll be representing either the Dragonmaw or the Wildhammer as each side tries to take control of this critical area.
Getting into Twin Peaks is as easy as queuing for any other battleground. The only catch is that it requires level 85 to play, so if youre not there yet and wondering why you cant queue for Twin Peaks theres your answer.
Strategically, many of the same themes apply to this BG as apply to Warsong Gulch. Youre going to want to monitor and control the enemy army by monopolizing choke points like the central bridge. Protect your flag carrier and kill theirs.
Thankfully one of the more common and less praiseworthy aspects of Warsong Gulch which is the infamous Graveyard camping is essentially a non-factor in Twin Peaks since each faction has two separate graveyards making camping unrealistic.
Twin Peaks is part of the Rated Battleground rotation on the weeks when 10 player BGs are run, so be prepared for it!
Battle For Gilneas
Format: 10 vs 10 flag domination (think Arathi Basin).
The latest battleground, Battle For Gilneas is another variation on a theme. This battleground is a condensed version of the Arathi Basin flag control model. The primary differences between the two battlegrounds, other than the design of the maps, is that Battle For Gilneas is a 10 player map whereas Arathi Basin is a 15 player one and instead of five flags like AB has there are only 3.
Battle For Gilneas is located on the Gilneas plateau (shocking, I know) on the Southeastern end near where the Forsaken Ships disembarked. Anyone who has leveled a Worgen from 1-10 will be familiar with this area. Originally BfG was slated to take place inside Gilneas City itself, but the revised setting was an inspired choice: this BG has great terrain.
As you might expect, the theme of this BG is Forsaken invaders versus Gilnean defenders. Youll fight over the Mine, Waterworks, and Lighthouse. Its worth taking a look at the main TenTonHammer guide to Battle For Gilneas since the map is fairly complex and its easy to take a loss if your team isnt on their game early in the match.
Due to there being only 3 flags in BfG instead of 5 youll be running around attacking unprotected territory a lot less than in Arathi Basin. If you can control two nodes then thats enough in BfG. The diverse and mountainous terrain in the central area gives opponents many opportunities to bypass the forces of the defenders if they arent vigilant, this is going to be a map in which communication will win the day.
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