Fundamentals of team-awareness
The first thought that occurs in practically every person’s mind as they step into a War front, is the quick glance around as you survey your surroundings and ask yourself “Who am I playing with”?
People who aren’t as familiar with PvP, might not catch this step, but it’s incredibly important. If you see a healer, it will tell you two things:
1) This person has the potential to keep our group alive, and should be highly regarded as not only a person of interest in my team’s favor, but the other team is going to deliberately target this person first for their restorative properties.
2) This person is more than likely nowhere near as protected by armor as I am, and probably spends more time focusing on healing friends and allies than protecting themselves from imminent harm. When not participating objectively, I should keep a visual contact on people who are looking to harm them, so I may solidify our victory by not letting our main source of life-regeneration drop.
That’s for healers, which should be a fairly obvious point to make. Not many people catch onto that though, which bugs many people I know. The second group of people one should keep in mind, are those that are tanks. Now, I’ve heard from others that playing the role of a tank in PvP is not the smartest of ideas, but I’ve played one consistently, and I can testify to the fact that they’re an integral part of the PvP system. When I think of myself or another tank, two other ideas spring to mind:
1) This person is heavily geared and is a defensive specialist. They more than likely possess multiple group-related buffs and abilities to further the longevity of life in other members of the group. While not quite as useful as the healer, they can provide an aegis of protection that can buy you seconds, to minutes of life at a time.
2) There’s something to be said about the psychological effect of tanks in combat. When enemies see a tank, they tend to panic because they forget that just because a tank has high defense, this does not imply that their offensive capabilities rival their defense. More often than not, masses will attack a tank for fear that they will upset their forces, and when they spend minutes at a time being distracted by this single, highly armored individual…they do just that.
As for support roles such as mages and rogues who use ranged weapons, we can for the sake of space lump them together for a second. Of course, I know the intricacies that separate the roles of mages and rogues. I will cover these in later topics, but suffice to say they play the same vital role during a fight. Two things to consider regarding ranged-rogues and mages would be the following:
1) They have the ability to kite, therefore can throw large amounts of burst damage on the enemy while retaining a sense of mobility. While rogues have the ability to disappear willingly, mages must focus on defensive abilities and their “glass-cannon” properties they possess. Sometimes, just a little extra DPS on a mage’s or rogue’s target can ensure that your force overcomes the opposition quickly.
2) Their armor is often sacrificed for the sake of high “spike” damage, therein causing them to be the natural target of the other team. Mages have a harder time than rogues do when engaging multiple enemies, therefore it’s usually a good idea to try to pry an enemy off a mage before engaging a new opponent. Who knows, that mage could turn around and help save you in the future! As for rogues, they rely on their dexterity to provide a dodge factor into deflected attacks, therefore allowing them to add more damage while staying well out of range of their attacker’s grip. The problem is, the second a rogue is made stationary by a root, or stun skill they become a punching-bag for anyone who wants to take a hit. Sometimes, a quick distraction of their opponent can allow your friendly rogue to regain their sense of control and help recover the victory that they nearly achieved before.
As for the last group I’ll cover, they are certainly not the last on anyone’s mind. The melee DPSer is often regarded as a worst-case opponent on the battlefield because of their near ridiculous ability to pump out a sufficient amount of damage while at the same time eating a bit of punishment themselves. However, these warriors, rogue melee users, and cleric tanks are still important parts of the battle and must be considered in your equation. When understanding this group, you must think ahead to the following guidelines:
1) These guys can handle themselves, and often are the center of attention when they jump into the fray to combat multiple opponents. That means they’re usually brought down first, and sometimes can upset a battlefield by taking one or two with them. Can you provide them assistance without being slaughtered yourself? Buffs, heals of all-kinds, shields, and debuffs are the friends of these warriors. They focus on targets who can be singled out in the pack. Like a grenade, people will run from them, and if you can find the target of the melee-user, you can learn how to react. Should you slow, or stun their prey? Can you poison, root, or confuse them? Do they require a little extra damage to finish the job? All these must be considered.
2) Often times these warriors incur bleeding effects, and sometimes on multiple opponents. Nothing screams “time to end a conflict swiftly” like watching three, to four people limp away from a fight with 50% HP and swiftly approaching zero. This is the time where you rally multiple team-mates, and usher in a final strike to exterminate the survivors of the conflict. Whether the warrior is dead, or dying they can be provided some form of relief. A healer can focus a strong heal to ensure the melee combatant lives to jump back into the mosh-pit. A group of 2-ranged attackers, such as rogues or mages can spray down the victims running to make sure they don’t find reinforcements. There’s a good chance your melee warrior will be drained of power to attack, so ensure that their efforts aren’t in vain. Be ready to step up to end the conflict before you face a larger, more readily prepared death-squad.
These are just a few of the things that people should think about while that clock is ticking down to start the fight. If you do, there’s a much better chance that you won’t flinch in a situation that requires immediate action. With just a bit of planning, you can be two steps ahead of the other force, and quite possibly turn an improbable victory, into an obtainable one.
Until next time kids, I’ll see you on the war front!