Tier 2 Scenario: Phoenix Gate
Phoenix Gate takes place on the hills of Ellyrion where Dark Elves and High Elves try to capture their enemy's banners in a struggle for morale! Capture the enemy banner to earn points! Carryings the flag for too long will eventually snare the flag carrier and eventually drain your will to fight.
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So you have read our guides to the Tier 1 Scenarios, and have mastered Mourkain Temple. You are now ready to move on, to delve deeper into the world of Scenarios, where flags are captured, and fortunes are lost... Well flags are captured anyway. Well Ten Ton Hammer has you covered, with an in-depth look at Phoenix Gate, the Tier 2 Scenario between the Dark Elves and the High Elves.
Phoenix Gate is the easiest of the Tier 2 scenarios to understand. That doesn't mean that it's the easiest of the Tier 2 scenarios to play well or to win. In fact, in many ways, it can be the hardest to do right.
Flag in Front of Base
Phoenix Gate, at its heart, is simply a capture the flag scenario. There are 2 flags, one belongs to you, and one belongs to your enemy. Your goal is to grab their flag, bring it back to your base and plant it, while preventing your enemy from doing the same thing. You get points for each enemy you kill and a large bonus in points for capturing their flag and planting it in your base. First team to 500 wins with a 15 minute time limit. You must keep possession of your own flag before you are able to plant the enemies. Anyone holding a flag that is killed immediately causes the flag to reset back to its base. Sounds easy, right? Grab their flag and run back, how can this be so tough? Why do we need a guide for this? This should be easier than punting a gobbo over a stream, eh? I'll tell you why! Because without this guide you are simply going to run out there, get near their flag, and die. And then you are going to die again and again. Oh, and while you are dying faster than a mug of ale going down a dwarf's gullet, your enemy, who read this guide, will be running your flag back to his base, over and over again, laughing at your noob skills. So pay attention and learn the tips and tricks to winning Phoenix Gate.
You can see on the map that both sides start with a tower near their spawn point. Your flag is right in front of that tower. If you run over and stand at your flag, there's a straight road right in front of you that leads to your enemy's flag. While you can simply charge ahead and hope for the best (most noobs do exactly this), there are a few tips that will give you an edge in Phoenix Gate.
Tips & Tricks
Communication : While of course you always want to communicate with your teammates, in Phoenix Gate it matters more than any other Tier 2 Scenario. Unlike the others, it's not just grabbing the flag and running, you have to defend your flag at the same time that you are attacking theirs. That takes communication and coordination. Let's face it, Scenarios are basically large PUGs (pick up groups), which are notorious for not working together, and getting players killed. Don't let this happen in your Scenario, "/sc" should be your friend. You need at least 3 to 4 players to stay with your flag and play defense while, at the same time, you need those who are going on offense to take the same routes and charge together. You can only accomplish this effectively if you and your teammates are talking to each other. If you run off alone in Phoenix Gate, you are only giving easy kills to your enemy.
Tip: Set up Macros with sayings like, "/sc Enemy at our flag, help!" in advance. This will save you time and call other players to help you if you can't handle the attack on your flag.
Defense : Use the few seconds before the Scenario starts to decide who is going to defend your flag. If you are going to defend the flag, take a sharp left as soon as the Scenario starts, and head in a straight line to your flag. Stay loose around the flag, so you have the best chance to spot enemies no matter which way they decide to attack from. Remember you are playing defense. If your enemy starts running away, don't follow them too far looking for the kill. Lots of smart players use this strategy, so that while you are busy killing them, their friend comes in behind you, grabs the flag, and runs. It's easy to get caught up in the moment, smell blood, and go for the kill. Remember your job is to protect the flag. Let the guys on offense worry about the kill count. If despite your best efforts your flag gets taken, everyone in the Scenarios job is now to kill the enemy flag bearer before they get to their home base. Use sprint, potions, whatever you have to, in order to keep up with them and take them down. If you have any roots or snares, use them as often as you can.
Tip: Pay close attention to your flag, even when you don't see anyone. Your enemy likes to use stealth and sneak right up on the flag. If you aren't paying attention they will be gone with it before you notice.
Offense : There are two main routes that can be used to seize your enemy's flag (see map). Use the few seconds before the Scenario to decide who is going defense, and who is going offense. You want the majority of your force to take the primary route on the map. Their job is to charge down the center and cause as much havoc as possible (and the distraction this provides is a huge bonus). If you can push your way to the flag, great! Grab it and run. However you will most likely wind up going back and forth with the enemy. This is ok; in fact, this is what you are hoping for. While everyone is paying attention to the main force, those that took the alternate route can charge in the side and grab the flag. By the time the enemy realizes what has happened, you should be heading back to your base with their flag. As soon as anyone grabs the flag, it becomes everyone's job to run interference for him. Block the path to slow the enemy and do everything possible to keep him standing until he gets the flag planted.
Tip: Don't step up to the edge of the assault point. If you stay back a bit, you can watch the flag without being seen and wait until the perfect time to charge.
Tanks : Your role in Phoenix Gate should always be on offense. It is your primary job to grab the flag. You have the most hit points and best armor, so you can take a lot of damage as every enemy player targets you when you grab the flag. If someone else grabs the flag, run interference. Throw any slows or roots you have at anyone close to your flag holder. If your flag is taken, try to block the path of their flag holder, or better yet, use this time to grab their flag. Unless one side controls both, it's a stalemate
Tip: There are siege weapons scattered around this Scenario, while they look cool, ignore them. You can do more damage, and be much more mobile and effective on your own.
Look out from Assault Point
Melee DPS : Your role varies in Phoenix Gate depending on which direction you are going. If you are playing defense, stay right on top of your flag and bring the pain to anyone who gets to close. Your damage output, plus your ability to take a hit, makes you perfect for stopping anyone from grabbing the flag. If you are playing offense, go for the enemy Ranged DPS first. These are the guys most likely to kill your teammate once they have the flag and are running back. Between their snares, roots, slows, and damage output, they can end a flag run quickly. If you are assaulting the flag, try to tie up any defenders so the Tank can grab the flag and take off.
Ranged DPS : Your role varies in Phoenix Gate depending on which direction you are going. If you are playing defense, stay a bit away from the flag, towards the enemy's side. If the flag is taken, they have to run towards you to get away, keeping them in the range of your attacks longer which gives you a greater chance of killing them. Use roots and snares to slow them down so your teammates can jump on him. If you are on offense, stay back and concentrate on anyone near the flag. The more confusion caused around the enemy flag, the better chance your side has of taking it. If your side gets the flag, use roots and snares to slow down the pursuit.
Healer: If you are playing defense, stay near your Ranged DPS. This way you can heal anyone taking too much damage near your flag, and if your flag is taken, you can keep the enemy in range longer to try and unload on them. If you are on offense, it's your job to... keep everyone alive. Easy, right? Well, while doing that, keep a close eye on the tanks or anyone else going for the flag. If anyone grabs the flag, your one and only job is to heal them constantly, allowing them to get the flag back to base.
Tip: If you are on the assault from the alternate path, Ranged DPS and Healers can stay at the assault point and prevent their enemies from closing into melee with them easily, while still raining down death, destruction, and healing in relative safety.
The main key to success in Phoenix Gate is communication. Whichever side is communicating and working as a team will almost always win this Scenario. If you're guarding your flag, stay close, and don't get impatient. They will come for the flag soon enough. If your enemy takes the flag, everything else becomes secondary, you must stop them from returning to their base with it. Use the routes to your advantage, and keep looking around. If you are by yourself, you are doing something wrong.
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