Before I start I want to make something very clear about this post. This is not a whinge-QQ-FU-Blizz post whatsoever. I want this to be constructive, and whatever follows are just my personal views on the subject.
Two weeks ago patch 5.4 was officially released to the public, and less than one week ago the new PvP Season 14 started. This introduced an interesting change to Arena – The Crowd Chose You!!!. For those of you too lazy to actually click that link and don’t know what that is (I quote) “Greatly increases damage done, reduces damage taken and allows you to see stealthed units.”. So cool right? Well sure it is…if you’re on the right team.
Pre-5.4 Arena games of up to 45 minutes were possible, people didn’t like this very much so this new buff was introduced to help reduce that (though, admittedly when reading the forums people are still crying that 15 minutes is too long). So who gets it? Basically whichever team ends up with a party member with the least amount of health does not get this buff. If you get a team close to death, you can ensure that after 15 minutes (or so) you’ll hit them from a lot of damage. Enough to one shot them, actually.
From what I’ve noticed in Arena peoples play-style has completely changed (specifically in 2v2). Usually now people will just blow their CDs and play defensive for the rest of the game, which depending on the makeup of your team (I feel UH DKs for example have to ‘creep up’ on their burst) this could go horrible for you. A lot of teams don’t stand a chance in this type of scenario. Is this fair? Well, technically yes…but surely there is a better way to make (or keep) an even fight even, while reducing the time people need to spend fighting one another.
The idea behind this new feature is amazing, don’t get me wrong. I just feel that this was poorly implemented, and in my opinion, I think that the easier route was taken to reduce fight times, without actually reducing fight times. Think about this…Pre-5.4 when 45 minute games would occur, this was because both teams (usually healer-dps combos) were even in damage, heals and peels. Neither team was better than the other, even if one team did come close to death. The game was not over until someone got killed or the timer ran out, and the same should be the case in Arena today.
Now I’m not saying remove the buff, i’m saying change how it works. It may take a bit longer to implement, but it would ensure that everything stays as fair as possible in these games. I have come up with two (so far) ideas that might make this rage-proof and understandable for each team (Though, I guess nothing is rage-proof for some)
- Make it a random decision. Not based on damage, not based on healing. Completely random after 15-20 minutes. You could even replace the “Lowest Health: ##,### Gold Team” to something to show a random decision being made, i.e. it will now show a constant switch for 5 minutes between “Gold Team” and “Green Team”. The closer it get’s to giving a team a buff, all hell will more than likely break lose in Arena with both teams going full throttle to get a kill.
- Make it based off of both average healing and damage (preferably overtime, counting DPS and HPS). This is basically going to be a somewhat improved version of the ‘current model’. Instead of basing it off of how low a person gets in health, base it off of how constant their damage and/or healing is dished out. Those who slow down (Perhaps also caused by the amount of burst they blew at the start of a game) will not get the buff. The team who can keep up consistancy, wins.
Now I’m sure people have other great ideas on this topic, but it seems the majority of players agree – it is a great idea that has been poorly implemented. This is no one’s fault as you never truly know how something works until it goes live, regardless of PTR testing.
So what do you think? Do you think ‘whoever has the most burst and plays defensively for 15 minutes’ is how this should work, or could this buff be improved upon?