Thursday, February 7, 2013

What If: PvE Geared Like PvP

Gearing up for player vs player is all about activity.  You can get yourself a decent set of starter gear doing anything, even doing it badly, because honor is awarded win or lose.  To get weapons and top gear you need to reach levels of activity, be it capping conquest points or reaching a certain amount of honor gained.

The two major differences between gearing for PvE and PvP are that 1) you can get some of the best PvP gear without being the best if you are willing to work hard enough whereas no matter how hard you work at PvE if you do not have luck on your side and additional good players around you, you can not get the best gear and 2) entering in meaningful PvP group content begins from the start of the game and can start at any level, be it character level, skill level, or gear level but entering meaningful PvE group content does not start until you are max level and already have a certain level of skill and gear.

What this all means is that PvP is more player friendly content.  A level 17 winning a battleground is no different from a level 90 winning one.  But that is not the point of the post, the point is, with the concept that PvP is more player friendly, could PvE ever adapt to the reward design the way it is for PvP which is part of the reason it is usually considered more inclusive content?

For this to happen one thing would need to change that people that PvE would never give up willingly.  Bosses can no longer drop loot.  No loot what so ever.  No more free passes or lucky players or gearing up off specs because no one else needed something.  If you want your gear, you need to buy it, earn it if you will, just like in PvP.

For that one reason alone this whole "what if" is truly fictional and will never happen in a million years.  I can hear the tears flowing now just thinking about this being implemented in the game.  People that love their free and easy loot from beating bosses will cry like babies.  What would be worse then hearing a million or more babies cry all over the forums?  It will never happen.

But that is why this is a what if post, what if it did happen.

You would earn your valor/conquest from completing daily content.  You would get your justice/honor, just for participating in content, win or lose.  Could you imagine getting 10 justice points after each wipe as a consolation prize for at least trying?  That is what battle grounds do, they give the losing team the ability to gain honor even when losing so why not justice when you wipe.  So if PvE is going to adopt the PvP model you need to reward people even if they do not win.  You should also award some sort of justice just for killing the trash mobs as well because honor comes rolling in fast and often even if you are on the losing team so in PvE it should feel the same, a fast and steady flow of justice, win or lose, just as long as you participate.

The valor/conquest thing would be like the arenas and raiding being compared.  Winning in arena gives you conquest, downing bosses in raids will give you valor.  Simple enough right?

You would collect your points and buy your gear.  Wouldn't that be something special?

You could also lock out certain things based on activity and while many cry about it that is the best way to handle progression in PvP, at least until someone else figures out a better way.

For instance, you will be able to cap your valor every week but there will only be a few pieces available to you.  The tier pieces will have a lock out on them, something like, you must down 100 current raid bosses to buy these pieces.  Something like you needed to have xxx arena rating to buy this.  Or how about the, you need to have 7000 honor this season, but in PvE it would translate into you have needed to earn 7000 justice this raid patch to buy this piece.

Could you imagine if there were a PvE version of honorable kills?  One where you get points based on the types of things you killed.  I would love to see what my PvE honorable kills would like that.  Perhaps that is something that would be interesting to see even outside of this what if... some day.

Seriously, think about it, what if PvE was completely like PvP for gearing up?

The only real down side I see would be the lack of high end enchanting materials because there would be no drops to disenchant.  Perhaps PvE could still drop items, but the maximum they would drop would be the same item level as the crafted PvP gear.  So both PvE and PvP have ways to go about getting basic starter stuff and there would still be stuff to disenchant for the better materials, and of course, greens would always be part of the game.

I don't know why, but I like the idea of "you must kill 25 bosses before you can buy this piece" but it would run into the same problem the reputation to buy gear did.  No one minds doing it the first time, doing it over and over on every character you want to play would get frustrating.

Goes to show you, even in a what if scenario, things can still end up having their sucky side.


  1. 1. This week we're extending a lockout for a raid. Because we have to down this hc boss we've been working on for the past weeks and we don't really need the gear from the previous bosses anymore. If it was per number of boss kills, we would feel obligated to kill all of them
    2. We lost a ranged spot. We tried recruiting for the past month but it seems my realm has no boomkins that speak our raid team's language. We're gearing up a fresh player now. Since we don't need the loot, this one can get geared up really fast to actually be helpful on heroic progression (no, justice gear is not considered decent). If it were like pvp, we would be completely screwed.

    3. We took one person from our second (far less progressed)raid team with us to get a Shek'zeer kill to unlock Terrace. We switched in our warlock who doesn't mind all that much. The chance for the boss to drop what he needs isn's all that big and, even if it drops, someone else in the group may use it so it's not wasted. With kill tracking, kill lost is loot pushed back for no reason.

    How would this affect mains - alts - switching in players just for progression? How fast would the rate of acquiring gear be? Can't be too slow, since those pieces that drop help push on progression. Don't know, a lot of revamp to do, but it could be fun.

    1. 1) Excellent point. There is no way to catch up on kills. But at the point you are at, don't you think everyone on your team has 100 kills and enough to buy the tier pieces? My guild does very little raiding and has not even completed all normals and most of the raiders have over 40 kills, so I am sure all of yours have over 100. For the new 90 looking back 100 will seem like a huge road block but no more than gearing up with valor is when you can only get 1000 per week. In the 3 weeks it takes you enough to buy a good piece, if you are with a very good guild you can have 48 bosses down by that points, almost half way there in the time it took to buy one piece.

      2) They want slow gearing up now, it is slow for the maximum end game either way, PvE or PvP. You are not going to enter heroics without normal gear and you are not going to be doing 2800 arena rating in honor gear, unless you are insanely skilled of course. Same difference. In the PvE gearing like PvP example you would be buying 483 gear with justice. Sure, not exactly heroic ready but also not quite the 458 justice I am sure you had in mind.

      3) That is just the luck vs earn argument. You perfect the luck into your gear method and there is nothing wrong with that at all. I personally would prefer a system that said I needed to kill a boss 10 times to earn enough to get my bow then kill it 15 times and still curse luck for it not dropping. I will always choose the option to earn my gear over the luck into it, and there is nothing wrong with that either.

      As for the question...

      That is the one problem I saw with it. The alt issue. You would need to share boss kills to make it easier on alts. That is the only thing I could think of.

      My main is my hunter and I have not been raiding on it, one MV clear only. I have been tanking and doing all my kills with that. So should my main, who I would rather be on but I am doing what the team needs, be screwed because I am a team player? No.

      So there needs to be a real catch up system in place.

      I think the only catch up system this would have is that there is no limit to justice, just like honor. So you can grind to get honor in every single slot in one day and you can grind to get justice in every single slot in one day.

      It would actually make entry level easier for alts and I would like that.

      Perhaps they would count LFR bosses as boss kills too. In PvP you get your conquest even if the team you beat was easy, so why not make the boss count, even if it was easy?

  2. hi james and others

    Ok, GE, I found this - it is from a blue post on MMO (I think that is where I was) and only partial -

    All Valor is converted to Justice
    Justice above the 4000 cap is converted to gold at a rate of 47 silver per point

    So let’s say the realms go down for the 5.2 patch and you have 450 Valor and 3800 Justice. Because of the 4000 Justice cap, you’d log back in after the patch is released with 0 Valor, 4000 Justice, and be 117 gold and 50 silver richer after the conversion.

    With 5.2 we won’t be changing current Valor items to cost Justice, but they will be much cheaper (discounts from 50-75% off their current costs). You’ll need to acquire Valor after the patch is released to buy pieces for their discounted rate, or to buy the new 5.2 Valor items, but we’re also introducing new items to spend your Justice on, including heirlooms and Pet Battle stones.

    So we won't have to worry about all that valor we have now, it will be gone when 5.2 comes out. : (

    Of course, if you were aware of this already, mea culpa on my part :(

    -roo "two days behind, three in the future"

    1. I read that but it still does not help alts much if not any.

      The better gear will still cost valor, which has never been the issue. The fact it was behind reputation was the issue.

      My healer, whom has no reputations, for example, has been using her valor to upgrade things. Soon that will not longer be an option. Even if they opened the rep thing my healer could only use 2 pieces from valor now. So I buy those, at reduced cost, and again am stuck with valor I have that I have nothing to use it on. Their design for valor is really flawed this expansion thus far.

  3. Yes! Yes! Yes!

    If I was head of design for WoW, one of the first things I would change is having all gear earned or crafted rather than having it pooped out of a dead dragon's ass.

    1. Sometimes you have to wonder why a dragon has a plate helm, an agility trinket, a spirit offhand and an intellect ring on him to being with.

      Or better yet, if he has a nice cache of treasure on him why are we always so stupid that we only take 2 pieces from it?

  4. oops, as usual, I put a period instead of a ? should have read -

    So we won't have to worry about all that valor we have now, it will be gone when 5.2 comes out? :(

    Why oh why does Blizzard throw the baby out with the bath water? I have some 2000 valor on one toon. Now it will be gone.

    Jaeger and I are on the same page - all armor (and weapons) are crafted.

    No GE before you say it - what drops from the various raid bosses are enchantments to make that armor better (and pvp battles). So, yes, there will still need to be raiding done. Yes, still have the various enchantments crafters can make, but you want that +1000 agilty enchantment to shoulders? -10 person Raid. You want that +1750 agilty enchantment to shoulders -do a 25 person raid. And make raid enchantments stack above what normal enchantments can do.

    not available in all states


    -roo "I'm going to bed"

    1. It becomes justice. Happens every raid patch, the lower the top tier currency.

      Having enchantments as drops might be a decent idea but for it to work there would still need to be a non raiding way to get it.

    2. Sorry, still on this page -

      Doesn't matter that the valor becomes JP - it is still gone! And it doesn't matter that it happens every raid patch, it it is time to stop doing that.

      You want to know why there are only 9.6 mil now - it is because people are tired of the skinner box changing. :(

    3. I agree, it should not change, there is a 3K cap so people can not stock up to much ahead of time. Why lower them?

      I know they do it so no one has the advantage of hoarding them up, but still, it is only 3K, let us hoard up 3K if we want.

  5. I get the idea (remove RNG, reward effort), and I sympathize, but I am not sure the gearing model used in PVP is the right one to chase. The PVP'ers, who that model was designed for, hate it almost unilaterally (both those who do arenas and those who do random BGs). Maaaaybe that model would work better for PVE, I don't know, but it just seems weird to try and mimic something that arguably fails at its primary purpose. Someone mentioned no easy catch up, there are many other problems as well. What the weekly cap should be is a huge problem in and of itself, for example, there are no easy answers here.

    I think I personally like the idea of crafting all gear from mats that drop from raid bosses and trash more than anything else. Arguably, maybe that's because I haven't thought about the implications enough.

    On another topic: subs are down to 9.6 million. Obligatory question - why do you think they went down? Genuinely interested in your opinion.

    1. The crafting idea would be pretty nice, it would be awesome for the econemy and needing rare drops from world mobs and raid drop pieces is a nice way to do it.

      But one question there would be, what would happen with valor? You know they want to keep that in the game, something to keep people logging in and grinding.

      Perhaps some of the things needed to make gear would have to be purchased with valor. That could work.

      It went from 10M to 9.6M so that is not a big drop at all from the peak of a new expansion. Compared to cataclysms peak to drop it is nothing.

      As for why I think it happened, the standard. Some people came to check things out and left after they did. I am sure a small amount of that was also from people leaving due to burn out. It is easy this expansion if you try to do everything and don't have the time for it.

  6. It's interesting that you think that PvE gearing should be more like PvP. I've often thought the opposite. I want to get into PvP but I've never managed it. The problem being there's no 'easy' way to get conquest like there is for valor. If you aren't in a guild/have friends that run arenas/RBGs then you're screwed. As you'd need to find people that do, and finding people that will take you with zero experience is hard enough. Now, I prioritised my main for my guild raiding at the start of the expansion. Only a couple of weeks went by before I went for PvP but it was already too late, I was already behind. Basically, I had to choose and I guess I made my choice, another expansion with no PvP.

    Valor in PvE is easy to get without a guild behind you now. Before LFG/LFR, if it had existed back then, which I don't think it did, then it would have been more the same. As you needed to know people to form groups back then, like you do for arena/RBGs. The same isn't true now. You can accumulate valor a lot more easily than conquest. You can cap out every week doing quests if you so desired to avoid groups. I'm not saying that's right, but it makes the barrier to entry easier. You can accumulate the gear to make up for lack of experience, to put on guild apps. Personally I don't look for gear rather than attitude, but having someone with a good set of well maintained gear shows they at least care about that, and are willing to put in the effort for it.

    I understand and fully support the effort should trump luck argument. I really do. I have no idea how anyone made legendaries in vanilla for instance. I got 60 attempts on Garr's binding so far, which isn't as many as others by a long shot. I got Geddon's on about the 11th kill, and I got 2 eye's of sulfuras - 2! That's just stupid and RNG at it's finest. I have no trouble killing a boss 100x if I have a guarantee of getting what I want. That would take 2 years, but fair enough. However, to kill it that many times and still not get it is insanity inducing. Effort really should trump luck. Only if there was no RNG I wonder whether people would play. It would just seem like one big grind, no problem for me and perhaps not for you. However, for the average player who needs something nice to drop occasionally, to be lucky occasionally so it seems like fun rather than work.

    I don't know. Interesting idea though :)

    1. Emblems before the random finder were hard to get because you had to camp trade for hours as a DPS and sometimes still not get into one. It was definitely not fun but it was good for the community. I met most of the people I am friends with in game as people I did emblem runs with. They are still my friends and we still talk even if they are in different guild. The LFR killed community but it sure as hell made getting emblems (valor) easier.

      I know what you mean about PvP, that is part of the turn off for me as well. But valor is easy to get without a guild even, as you said, and it still would be easy to get, even if we geared up PvP like. You would still get it from dungeons, raids, quests, etc. It would be easy to gear up.

      I could have made 2 thunderfury's while getting them to exalted. Luck of the draw I guess. I even got extras of one of the bindings. Just my luck, don't need something, get it over and over. Like the rat in dalaran, before they could be traded I would fish them up all the time. Soulbound rare items you do not need more than on of, so I keep getting them, but one I need? Never.

    2. Taitrina, if I may, an advice on getting into PVP:

      The most important thing is to realize that you absolutely WON'T get into PVP in one season. You just won't. There's just too much to learn and get acclaimed with.

      So, in this vein, DON'T approach PVP from the perspective of gear. As you yourself note, knowing the right people is also important. I will tell you right now, that despite all the whines about gear (of which I did a lot, too), who are you playing with and how well you play together is many, many, many times more important than what gear you personally have. Gear matters too much, yes, but up until 2000-2100, which should be your first target, and which is something you will very likely NOT get in your first season no matter how fast you start, gear is secondary.

      Do this: run BGs for practice, get full honor gear with a couple of pieces of conquest. Then, run BGs with 4 other people communicating on voice or in chat, and playing as a group. oQueue is a very useful addon for this. Read guides, watch streams, etc, try to win more BGs than you lose (someone in your party is bound to be at least somewhat knowledgeable, learn from them all you can). Then do arenas for cap. No rating aspirations, just cap and practice. Try to find people who are communicating, or the practice bit will suffer. You might do RBG PUGs too, but RBGs are a joke this season so I doubt you will learn all that much. After you have 1600-1700 in arenas, your introduction to PVP officially ends and you are good for anything. But this does take time.

      I think you might start this season, it is not too late. You might not get to arenas, but you will surely get to the point where you can run random BGs as a half-premade, with voice. That's a big step towards no longer being a newbie. :-)

      Good luck!

    3. One more thing on ratings. I mentioned 2000-2100 and then 1600-1700, so I will clarify.

      2000-2100 (sometimes 2200, for T2) is something people commonly set as their first target. They figure getting a glad is probably too cocky as the very first step, so they set a lower goal. That's all good.

      After setting the target at 2000-2100, maybe 2200, they typically get 1600-1700. That's perfectly normal! The initial target was good, it's the expectations of getting to it in the scope of the very first season that were wrong.

      So, if you end up with a "puny" rating of 1600-1700 despite trying really hard for the entire season, don't beat yourself over the head! It's not that you are clueless or can't play. You will get better, much better, but let it take time. It's only a problem if you can't jump over 1600-1700 in 3+ seasons, not one.

    4. Some excellent advice there PvP Anon.

      While I might not be a PvPer I do have some experience that I wish to add.

      When doing those battlegrounds make sure one of the people in your group is a healer, two if possible.

      Firstly, you are there to learn communication, but secondly, you are there to win while learning. Without a healer that can sometimes be impossible.

      Just one small example. Myself and two friends would occasionally run some BGs. Me on a priest healer, another friend on a paladin healer and the third being a hunter. When we run that combo, 2 heal one DPS, our win rate is well over 80%. Some days we do three and lose none. Rarely we might lose one of the three.

      The same three, who being we have played well together and communicate well, try to run on three DPS and can not win for the life of it. Our win rate has to be lower than 30%, if that high.

      So while learning to communicate is important, you can not win without healers and you can never count on the system giving you any, so bring your own.

      It will take a lot of work to learn to get better and it will be a lot more enjoyable doing it if you are winning because losing makes you want to quit.

      It is why I originally quit years back and never returned. I would run 5-10 BGs a day and win maybe 1 every 3 or 4 days. I stopped PvP and never returned. The alliance win rate had to be under 10%. Alliance does not win, at least not then, because we never had any healers.

      As an interesting side note, that is when I created my priest and leveled it doing PvP only. I figured, if no one will heal me, I'll heal. I liked to PvP but I hated to lose, so I decided to be the key factor on whether we win or lose, I became the healer.