Rated Battlegrounds - The type of PvP that WoW provides was invented first in the First Person Shooter genre. Alterac Valley is a simply a V.I.P match. Arathi Basin is Dominion. Warsong Gulch is Capture the Flag, and even Eye of the Storm is simply a combination game of Dominion and Capture the Flag (a combo also first introduced in FPS). And Arena – well, Arena is simply Team Deathmatch.
Team Deathmatch is not a superior form of PvP over the other types of objective based PvP. TD is simply a team based game where the only objective is kills. The optimum strategies revolve around maximizing your team kills while minimizing your team deaths. Other objective based match types place a premium on strategies that help you win the objectives for that game type. A good parallel analogy here is chess versus checkers. In checkers, you win by eliminating all of your opponents checker pieces off the board. In chess, you win by check-mating (or killing) the King.
Strictly speaking, if we continued to draw those parallels to WoW PVP then Arena would be most similar to checkers (the removal of all pieces) and chess would be most similar to Alterac Valley (the protection and elimination of the King). Many people would argue that chess takes more skill and therefore a chess champion is greater than a checkers champion. In WoW, we effectively argue that the checkers champion is better. However, chess is not better than checkers and checkers is not better than chess. One may be more difficult to master, offer more competition or arguably be more enjoyable to play, but they aren’t inherently better or worse than each other – just different games.
The point here is that WoW currently offers only one type of Rated or Ladder game when they could be offering five types. There is no reason why a system couldn’t be put in place where I paid 1000g and setup a 40-man team for Alterac Valley that played in rated matches against another 40-man team. Or likewise, a 15-man team for Arathi Basin/EoS or a 10-man team for Warsong Gulch. Blizzard already has a reward system in place for Rated Games and this could be extended to Rated Battleground games. Right now, there is no incentive for a premade to play a premade. If you want to inspire the epic battles that these battlegrounds deserve, then the only real solution is to incent teams to want to be the best. Oh sure, you may still end up with guilds farming points but that problem already exists in the current form. At least this way, the battles would be that much more exciting.
Coincidently, you also solve the problem of premades playing against PUGs. After all, if you take the time to find 14 other people, why bother running against a PUG when you can get better rewards from a Rated Match?
10 out of 15 teammates think you suck. Goodbye. - As I talked about in my previous post, if I form an instance PUG or go on a Raid with my guild, I have to be able to contribute or I am not going to be playing. There absolutely needs to be some type of way to get rid of players who don’t contribute or otherwise cause problems in a battleground.
I think the best solution here is a simple voting system where people can nominate someone to be removed from the match. A few rules to prevent obvious abuse:
- A player needs to be nominated by at least three people before it is put up for a team vote
- A player can’t be voted on more than once in a single match
- You can only nominate one person every five minutes if your last nomination vote failed
- A player is voted out when a certain majority is reached (varies on the battleground)