With just less than two days before the launch of warlords of draenor I can't help but think that blizzard is really trying to push PvP this expansion, more than they did last expansion which was supposed to be the PvP faction conflict expansion. They are doing it well too, for the most part, unlike how they did it in mists.
The fact of the matter is that more people PvP on a regular basis than raid. While I am not personally a PvPer I can understand and accept that fact. PvP by nature is more open and welcoming than PvE even if the venom in a random battleground is often worse that an LFR, which says a lot.
Blizzard tried to actively push PvP last expansion in the wrong way. By adding the PvP part of the legendary cloak quest line they did more harm than good in trying to entice people to PvP. The number of "never again" posts about PvP after being forced into it was astounding.
If you were a horde player, while you were almost all but guaranteed a win in each battleground, you had to wait to get into it, sometimes up to 30 minutes. If you got unlucky and lost, which is extremely rare for those playing horde side, it was frustrating because you knew there was another long wait before you could to try again for a win. If the unthinkable happened and you lost two in a row, it might push you to the point of giving up. A hour wasted and two lost battlegrounds. Admittedly that never happened to me, horde for me were instant wins. I think I lost a total of 1 battleground the entire expansion as horde.
On the other hand if you were the alliance you would be blessed with instant queue times but that usually resulted in a lot of losing and frustration mounting up. In the same hour it would take a horde character to win one battleground an alliance character could very well be in 5 or 6 or even more battleground and they would lose every single one of them. While it is true that on a couple of my characters, one hunter and one priest, I one shot both battlegrounds as alliance, the over all result for me was a nightmare. My warlock took the worst of it, losing 17 battlegrounds in a row at one point. It was enough for me to quit even trying to get the legendary cloak on it.
So you can see that adding the mandatory PvP part of the quest line worked for no one. If you were the alliance you had to deal with what felt like a 90% loss rate and if you were the horde you had to deal with the long wait times. Either way, no matter who won the battleground, everyone lost in terms of fun. It was nothing but frustrating and was no way to try to get people into PvP.
This expansion blizzard is going with the more subtle approach in trying to get PvEers like myself into PvP and it is already working for me, even if the expansion is not out yet.
There is one small mistake I think blizzard made and that is not making the gladiators sanctum a standard building in your garrison. If blizzard had done that I would have stood up and cheered for intelligent design and the perfect way to attract new people into PvP. But sadly, they didn't.
But even with that said, the gladiators sanctum is a fantastic way to try and get people into PvP, at least people like me. It offers some interesting titles to be won, an ongoing collection of broken bones that can then be used to possibly get you some free gear through work orders, and dailies of a sort. It also gives people something to do in what is an otherwise lackluster expansion in terms of content.
By adding the building and all the things that go with it, it worked as bait, bait that will or could get me to bite and want to try to PvP a little more often. More importantly, it would be making me do it because I wanted to do it and not because I felt like I had to do it, like with the legendary quest line.
As I mentioned, the one fault here is that the building is not a standard building. You need to spend one of your limited medium plots on your garrison to get it. But even with that, it is still near the top of my list of building my main will be getting. Yes, me as a PvEer is planning on getting a PvP only building on my garrison. Good work blizzard. Your bait caught one fish.
The other way they are baiting people is with gear. Anyone that plays both ends of the spectrum knows that PvP has a MUCH better gearing system than PvE does. It has for a very long time. PvP gear is based on working for it whereas PvE gear is based on luck. Given the option I would rather earn my gear (PvP) than be handed it (PvE) any day. PvE seriously needs to adopt the PvP gearing system, but that is for another post all together.
Looking at the item levels of gear and seeing that conquest gear is better than anything you could ever get out of LFR really makes me interested in PvP even more. Anything that can keep me from going to LFR is a good thing in my opinion and offering me better gear to NOT do LFR is a total winner if you ask me. I have never PvPed on my paladin, or warrior, or DK, outside of the occasionally open world dust up, which are the only three classes I never got a legendary on because I refuse to tank LFR and all three of those classes I only tank with, but now I can skip the LFR completely if I decide to PvP. I really like having this option.
I am not sure if it is a good idea for PvP gear to be better for PvE, that is an argument for another day and will always be based on opinion but it is something blizzard did on purpose. And I believe, just guessing here, that it was done on purpose. To give those people that do not like LFR another option and maybe bait them into trying something new. Well, once again, it is working. At least for me.
Blizzard is not forcing PvP on the players this time around, but they are making PvP seems like a viable option for both fun and gearing and letting us, the player, decide if we want to do it. Blizzard wants us to PvP and they are going about getting us to do it right this expansion.
When all is said and done I might end this expansion the same way I did the three before it, with only a little bit of PvP done and being more of a PvE player. But this expansion offers me something additional that appeals to me, and that is good. It is a lot better than forcing PvP on me to get the legendary cloak.
Do you believe that blizzard planned this out, enticing PvEers to PvP, or is just happened to work out that way? Either way, blizzard wants you to PvP in warlords of draenor and I think I might take them up on the offer.