Scenario Entropy

These past two years we’ve seen a literal metamorphosis of WAR’s overall game mechanic. RvR used to be a complicated formula of items contributing to a zone where whoever reached the magic number of 65 first … flipped the zone. Easy enough, right?

Wrong. To get to 65 there were several buckets of contribution that needed to be filled collectively in order to reach that magic number. These included:

  • Battlefield Objectives.
  • Keeps.
  • Scenarios.
  • Skirmish.
  • PvE.

This mechanic has been tweaked more than a few times and only recently was the PvE portion removed altogether. Surely a good thing, but as we look to Patch 1.4 some of those remaining criteria will be changing. If flipping a zone is as lickity-split easy as taking one keep, those other things will become non-calculatable factors.

BO’s … Keeps … Skirmish
These are definitely going to be key to flipping zones, only in different ways. The ultimate goal is to sack the enemy’s keep which will flip the zone. Taking a keep has changed and what was once doable with axes, swords, and fireballs will now require rams and siege weaponry (and some scumbag Skaven if you can get them).

Getting these things will require resources and to acquire them we’re dependent upon taking and holding BO’s. The more BO’s you take and hold the more resources your realm will accrue. They won’t be literally adding to the flip a la victory points but their resources will allow your realm access to get rams, siege weapons, bombers, and a sense of accomplishment.

Skirmish should be changing for the better. Today, here and there you may encounter the enemy and duke it out or more likely, a big battle will ensue outside a warcamp trying to squeeze out those 1-2 VPs needed to flip the zone. With 1.4, skirmishes should be happening all over the map with forces of varying sizes.

BO’s not having a locking mechanic will mean commando parties can make daring raids to try and flip them. Resource carriers will need escort parties to help them get to the warcamp. Groups could be waiting to jump the resource carrier anywhere on the map. Imagine turning the wrong corner in Praag and “Uh-oh!” … we’re dead. Skirmish will no longer be a part of the contribution but the new mechanic will spread the fight across the zone and we’ll be skirmishing plenty.

Scenario Slowdown
If the aftermath of previous big changes are an indication, when 1.4 goes live there will be a HUGE boom to RvR. Everyone should receive a renewed fervor to get into the lakes and fight. The new RvR rewards sound pretty sweet (as Bootae attests) for both the winners and the losers which should translate into a ton of action.

If the rewards are going to be rolling in and the act of RvR improved and more fun … will scenarios suffer? Initially, I predict a severe drop in scenario pops. A total redo of the main point of the game combined with the addition of a new RvR dungeon with extra new loot will draw the masses. And the rewards of Against All Odds coupled with even losing a zone will make it worth the outnumbered’s time to take part. I know I will (when I’m not running around underground).

And about that underground … Thanquol’s Incursion … with new RvR currency needed to buy the new armor sets, any smart RR65+ player will be jumping at the chance to enter the instance to start hoarding tokens. And they’ll need to … those prices are freaking steep.

Not sure what players deem an appropriate wait time in between pops, but if you’re used to say 5-15 minutes in between, I can imagine this time jumping considerably (Badlands will probably be the one NA exception). Some players might not care, but I like having them on hand should I not want to RvR … or run a PvE dungeon … or play an ALT.

Criss-Cross
With scenario’s diminished role in the campaign the conclusion (they won’t contribute squat to flipping zones), what will become of them? They will be a mini-game grindfest to race for those ultra-powerful new weapons.

Folks were livid when a huge swath of scenarios were removed en route to Weekend Warfronts. And I’m sure those who whined loudest are sad they can’t play Thunder Valley anytime they want. The Warfronts have been fun despite the mundane rewards — although the boost to renown is nice. We probably won’t be seeing any new Warfronts until after the RvR Packs launch, so repeating Black Fire Basin and Howling Gorge should be expected. I’m still waiting for the Maw of Madness weekend!

Could this be the opportunity to implement cross-server scenarios? People have been asking for them for quite some time. Spreading the pool of players across all active servers will help with pops, build new alliances and rivalries, and will allow players who want to run them broader opportunities to queue up and have fun. All this plus no contribution towards zones should eliminate concerns over that OP party from Gorfang rolling you on Volkmar and adversely affecting zone flips (or whatever server you’re on). Players will be fighting for fighting’s sake, renown, and insignias.

Maybe I’m crying Chicken Little but expect a significant drop in your scenario time as we all run to RvR and to squashing rats.

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8 Responses to “Scenario Entropy”

  1. I would love x-server scenarios. Even if they made them groups of two servers so you see the same groups instead of a mish mosh of 10 servers. I think the new scenario weapons are so powerful that you will still get pops though.

    • More pops are better and with scenarios not contributing to the overall campaign, it won’t matter how many wins and losses occur as they won’t flip zones.

  2. Wait until you play Thanq’s Incursion!

  3. I’ve been following the news of the new stuff that’s coming and it doesn’t really sounds all the exciting. The armor just sounds like more powerful rehashes of sovereign, the dungeon sounds like another city siege, and I have a feeling we’ll be sick of the new zone mechanics all too soon. Not having played with any of it, of course, I can’t be sure. But Is it gonna be worth an xpac price tag? Who knows. I think I’m just itching for that next big thing at this point.

    I think I’ll still come back, but I’m just wondering if the “new” content and extra level grind is going to be worth bothering with. Maybe they have more to the upcoming packs that will make it worthwhile. And hopefully they address that “ho-hum” feeling I get when I look at the armor stats. Considering the insinuation that they are flirting with warpstone (or whatever it’s called), they should have interesting attributes to them. For instance, I had a thought earlier that a set bonus could have a chance on hit to cure one curse/hex/ailment and reflect it back on your target. Maybe not as reliable as x stat for y seconds, but it’d sure make things interesting. *whew” /end rant

    Anyhow I doubt we’ve seen the last of the scenarios, as they are adding new weapons too. Oh, and those look boring too. *shrug*

  4. Actually, that’s an excellent point. Now it is easily possible for X-server SC pops, and that’s a great way to ensure pops and ensure new groups to play against! I like it.

    As much as I came HERE for the PVP over WoW, cross-server SC pops is one thing that WoW did right.

    Also: Thank you for steamrolling my WE this weekend. ;P. My little R34 WE didn’t stand a chance against you guys!

    • I like having options as some nights I just don’t feel like taking keeps. It sounds as though we will be having a lot of options after 1.4. With all the servers now being here in North America and SC being removed from zone flips … no excuses.

      When did we steamroll you? Did your WE have “Rikk” in it somewhere?

      • I agree about the options. I think it was in a SC, I was q’ing solo, and R34 with no healer or guard in crappy gear… yeah… heh, I was just trying to see how far I could drop people, since I knew I wouldn’t kill anyone.

        Yeah, she’s Rikkaa, go figure. I know, I’m so original.

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