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PvP Basics for the Druid.

Updated Mon, Aug 03, 2009 by Medawky

Finally decided to stand up for yourself and kick the opposing faction in the teeth, eh?
Well have no fear! Your druid is pretty amazing in many aspects of PvP and a potent weapon if used correctly. We will get more in depth in future articles about the nuts and bolts of  PvP in WoW, but for now lets take a quick overview.


Battlegrounds

The main place to find PvP in the game, for those not on PvP servers, is in the battlegrounds. Battlegrounds are cross server instances that pit you against the opposing faction in timed or goal based scenarios. You will be paired with others from your server and from other servers in your battlegroup.

Alterec Valley

Alterec Valley, or AV as it’s most commonly known, is the largest battleground in terms of number of players involved. This is a 40 man per team instance that finds you in essentially a race against the other team to kill their leader. There are several factors to winning this battleground and it is the most dynamic in that regard. Each faction has towers that can be captured and burned, the result is that with each tower destroyed you remove an NPC from the leader’s room and make it easier to capture the end game. Along the route there are also graveyards which become strategic holds to make your advance through enemy lives quicker and more efficient. Each faction also has a sub boss which provides nice bonus honor and lowers the other sides reserves by 100. At the start of AV each side has 600 “reserves.” Each tower lost, player death and death of the main NPC s lower this number. When the number of reserves hits zero, the game is over, allowing for two possible ways to win the game.  All of the druid’s faculties can be utilized here. The standard class roles of healing, tanking and DPS are obvious ones. The more subtle nuances of the game though can be where we shine. There are two mines in the valley that when controlled can add numbers back into the reserves. A sneaky druid can stealth in and capture these mines while the main battle rages on. Stealth can also be to our advantage in allowing us to sneak all the way into the enemy’s base camp and assist with capturing that graveyard.


Arathi Basin

Known as AB, Arathi Basin is a 15 vs 15 battleground that focuses on node control.
The objective of AB is to hold any combination of 5 nodes for as long as possible. The first faction to reach 2000 points wins the match. There is no other way to score points here other than to hold the most nodes. Holding all 5 nodes will result in a very fast victory as the score grows rapidly once more than 3 nodes are held. The druid is formidable here as well, as the nodes are captured by right clicking a flag and then preventing the other team from clicking it until it is captured. Stealth is a great way to scout the nodes and capture ones that were left unguarded. Our many forms of crowd control can also be utilized to incapacitate a solo defender and allow time for reinforcements to arrive.


Eye of the Storm

Introduced with The Burning Crusade expansion, Eye of the Storm is capture the flag with node control for a unique dynamic. EotS is a battleground where the druid can truly shine. Our natural immunity from most forms of speed control and immobilization make us prime flag carriers. There is no set number of flag captures that constitute a win here, which makes this different from Warsong Gulch. Rather, each flag capture adds to the point total that you get from holding nodes. This game is also set to a 2000 point to win cap. Most groups will prefer to capture 3 nodes and hold them for a more secure win, however holding two and capturing the flag is a great way to win as well. If you have a strong group that can hold three nodes you may be asked to take the flag and simply hold it as to prevent the other side from keeping it close.


Strand of the Ancients

The newest battleground to arrive, Strand is a time based scenario that mimics in many ways the mechanics of the Wintergrasp event.  The object of Strand is to either defend or capture a relic that is well fortified behind many targetable and damageable walls. This scenario uses siege weapons and features teams of 15. Each faction will get 10 minutes to capture the relic that is housed within the deepest reaches of the base. The side who does it quickest wins the match. In most respects the druid is fairly even with all other classes here, but there is one distinct advantage we share with rogues when on the offensive. At the forward graveyards rest barrels of “seaforium” explosive. These charges when placed at the base of a wall can do major damage. Use your stealth and speed to your advantage to help knock down those walls.


Warsong Gulch

Warsong Gulch, or WSG as it is commonly abbreviated, is a straight forward match of Capture the Flag. Having a strong druid as flag runner in this battleground has long been the preferred method of victory. The match ends when one side captures 3 flags. If you’re feral then this is your BG of choice. Your immunity to speed reduction via shape shifting and instant cast travel form makes you hard to stop. Stealth can give you a huge advantage at flag acquisition as well as sneaking up on the enemy flag carrier. But be warned if you are carrying the flag the act of stealthing will result in you dropping the flag. Bear form is a great defense against an enemy onslaught when you are holding the flag as well. Speed, surprise and strength will all serve you well here and will make you the favorite ally of your team and the most hated bane of your foes.


Lake Wintergrasp

Wintergrasp is a zone wide event that is held every 2 hours and 30 minutes. The objective of Wintergrasp is to control the keep and guard its relic from the opposing faction. Wintergrasp features multiple siege engines and war machines that you can use in defense of or to capture the keep. There are two workshops and four towers on the outer edges of the keep that are used to aid you in your assault. Entry to the zone is gained via portals in Dalaran that are open either if your faction controls the zone or if a game is about to begin Note that with patch 3.2 entry into Lake Wintergrasp will be done via a que system and will limit participants to 100 per faction. The faction that controls the zone has access to vendors of some very nice PvP gear and gems as well as control of the entrance to a 10 man or 25 man raid boss. If you participate in a successful assault or defense of the fortress you will often find parties forming up to raid “Archevon.” I highly recommend joining up as this boss has the chance of dropping the gloves or pants of either a tier set or a PvP set and it’s an excellent way to boost your resilience if you score one of these pieces.


Resilience

Resilience is a PvP-centric stat that reduces periodic damage and your chance to be critically hit, as well as reducing damage from critical strike and lowering the amount you are effected by mana drains. Resilience can be gained via armor, enchants and gems, as well as certain consumables. If you plan to PvP with any regularity I highly recommend building a resilience set. Resilience has no diminishing returns so stack as much as you can without gimping your main stats. 500 resilience is a good target for most casual to moderate PvPers.  Your PvP gear will usually focus on high stamina and one major stat for your spec - typically agility for feral and intellect for resto and balance. The higher your resilience rating the harder you will be to kill, and we all know that a smart druid is nearly impossible to kill quickly as it is.

Don’t get discouraged early on in your PvP career as there is quite a learning curve to this aspect of the game. Take solace in knowing that your class is among the most feared and respected in PvP in WoW and with practice and preparation those foes that target you now will be running for dear life soon.

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