With Rated Battlegrounds a huge focus now for Blizzard they have been getting a lot more interest from players especially myself. I’ve played thousands of games and learnt a lot. Below going to list some helpful hints, tips and a few tricks that will hopefully assist in success in Battlegrounds.
You don’t have to kill everyone at the node to get the cap. If there are one or two people left try and co ordinate Crowd Control so you can get the cap sooner in case they are bringing reinforcements or it can give you a slight lead. You can do this through fear or sheep or many other abilities. Killing everyone can waste your time and gives the other team more time to reinforce the node.
It is always good to be spread out no matter what Battleground you are in or you leave your susceptible to Area of Effect Crowd Control such as [Hungering Cold] and [Ring of Frost]. Far too often people clump up on the demolishers in Strand of the Ancients, all stack on the nodes in Arathi Basin or all on top of the Flag Carrier in Warsong Gulch and become easy Crowd Control targets. Stand off to the right, to the left if you don’t need to be on top of everyone else.
Know when to keep opposing team alive but in combat. This can be very advantageous. If you see them attempting to run to reinforce another node, if they are low on mana and want to drink get a person to keep them in combat. Often you can leave healers alive while you kill other targets if they are out of mana. You can waste the oppositions time if you do this well.
If healers or casters are out of mana you should really have no desire to kill them as they pose no threat. However if you kill them, they can come back with full mana and pose a possible threat. This is effective on healers as being out of mana they can’t heal their team mates.
At times the best defense is attack. You know you are pretty safe if you’re attacking a node and holding all the opposing teams numbers in place. There is almost no risk at your node if it’s not getting attack and you can breathe a sigh of relief if none of your nodes are getting attack but rather you are attacking them . Just because you have the lead doesn’t mean you shouldn’t attack and attempt to extend the lead.
Remember to arrange groups when you start a Rated Battleground always in accordance with nodes so you can make sure everyone is getting buffs such as tremor. It is also easier on the healers seeing healing frames.
Defenders always have a strong advantage if you are attacking there node, best way to get the cap is to clear them out and do your best to stop them from getting back to the node so intercepting them at their graveyard is especially useful. However once they get significant numbers there your best bet is to abandon the node if they have it and attempt to keep there team at the node while you attack another, this can be done with 2-3 People holding 7-10 people using spells such as [Piercing Howl], [Entangling Roots], [Frost Nova] etc.
Often even in the best teams can over commit to a node leaving themselves vulnerable in other areas. Such as taking 13 people to Blacksmith means almost all the other nodes should easily be taken. As well as this when defending nodes when people call large incoming of numbers don’t send your whole team as its usually not necessary for everyone to assist. If you see other teams doing this however use initial attacks as diversions then attack another place while your other team mates keep them busy at the initial attack.
Ventrillo or other forms of communication such as Skype are great tools to use when running Rated Battlegrounds but you really need to make sure you don’t have a group of mutes. Being vocal is especially important; as well as this though people must listen. If you are running a pug group you can play tricks on people using vent by telling them to do something on vent that they wouldn’t otherwise know unless they were on it, this can be used to filter out whose not listening on vent, such as telling people to click No on the Ready Check.
Always let your team know what is happening at nodes it’s better to be safe than sorry if you need help. Don’t be afraid to ask for help the worst thing you can do is under estimate your opposition and lose a node because of it as they are incredibly hard to get back. Try as well to have nice and early calls and be as clear as possible. eg 3 Incoming to Lumber Mill will need assistance. Never be afraid to call for help!
At times your presence of being there can be enough to deter an enemy rather than having to do anything to the person. Just riding to nodes and through them can make the enemy think you’re assaulting and call for assistance but you can always quickly go elsewhere and keep them second guessing. Also grouping up at a certain point to make it look like you’re heading somewhere works well for a good diversion or distraction.
Way way too often people don’t assist kill targets. Generally have a class such as Warrior / Rogue / Mage call kill Targets and make sure to assist as everyone on a different target especially in large battles can be very ineffective. Also when you are calling out targets druid to say Class / Name / Location as people can be all over the place and often Name or just Class is not enough in larger battles. Make sure to assist so everyone is on the same target!
Pay attention to the only routes they can attack from and you can narrow down the possible attack points to easily see incoming assault so you can call incoming numbers or quickly assist.
If you are attacking a node and not fighting on the flag you are probably being useless unless of course stopping them from coming in. But if people are stopping you from coming in fighting them is probably useless. So make sure to fight on or near the flag always, especially in Eye of the Storm you really should never been fighting in between nodes unless you are stopping incoming enemies from coming in or getting the flag.
Know where you are needed if you are mounted up at a node and see you have enough to stop there attack without you there you have no reason to stick around. As well once a point has been successfully defended, mount up as quickly as possible and look for their next assault or yours.
Last but not least DONT BE A NEGATIVE NANCY. Meaning don’t get angry, spread negative energy and hate on people especially yelling and arguing over vent. Things often do go wrong but no one intentionally wants to lose, mistakes do happen. It doesn’t help anyone and is very irritating to the entire group if you have a negative nancy in your midst. Try and be constructive as possible and never heavily criticize individuals in front of everyone.
Strand of the Ancients
In Strand of the Ancients especially you don’t need to kill people just use Crowd Control on them and delay them from getting to the Demolishers. Most often when you kill them they resurrect at a more beneficial spot. eg. You kill them on the beach when your Demolishers are going up to the second gate they end up spawning with the demolishers. Would be better just to keep them on the beach while your Demolishers are way ahead.
When you are attacking or even defending try and split up your dispellers to each area as you will need a Curse, Poison and Magic dispel almost everywhere for maximum success. Remember as well hybrids such as Mages and Balance Druids can decurse.
Slowing demolishers in Strand of the Ancients is probably one of the most critical elements to victory, however it can often cause problems if people override other peoples slows and then they get dispelled leading to a quick escape by the Demolishers. Great example is Mages [Frostbolt]slow over riding Warrior [Hamstring]. Hamstring can’t be dispelled so if you see it up there try and not remove it with your own slows that can be dispelled.
Graveyards are very important tactical points to obtain. Especially in Strand of the Ancients losing the Graveyards gives the attacking team access to two new demolishers on both sides, where as if they don’t get the graveyard they are restricted to the beach. Graveyards can never be recaptured in Strand of the Ancients.
There are many key scout points in all the maps to see where the enemy is going. The Overlook in The Battle of Gilneas, Blacksmith and Lumbermill in Arathi Basin are really good points to see where the enemy is going so you can quickly and easily react in time. Perfect scouting positions.
Best Classes for flag carrying are most definitely Feral Druids, Protection Warriors, Blood Death Knights however with the impending nerf Feral Druids won’t be anywhere near as strong as they are currently. Rogues and Mages at times can be good flag carriers as well as they are highly mobile with [Blink] and [Sprint]. Always good to have a healer such as Holy Paladin assist them in getting the flag as Blessing of Freedom and Dispels are very useful.
Path of Frost[/Spell] and Water Walking is surprisingly useful in Rated BG’s. Make sure your team is aware of the speed benefits it can provide via riding across water barriers. Especially in Battle of Gilneas and Arathi Basin.
Graveyard helps in defence so greatly. Generally you can be undermanned but if you’re defending without significant difference in numbers like 2:1 you should be fine despite lesser numbers. If you are defending all you have to do is hit the people attempting to capture the node and stay alive as long as possible and if you can kill a few people.
The following are just a few thoughts on different class roles in BGs.
Rogue or stealthed
Smoke Bomb is a new rogue ability introduced with Cataclysm. It can be used to assist in capturing nodes in Arathi Basin and Battle of Gilneas and even killing flag carriers in Twin Peaks and Warsong Gulch. It is extremely strong in these situations as only those in smoke bombs can target each other and no one outside can interfere with those inside. Meaning you can capture nodes if people are snared around the flag and can’t get into the smoke bomb to hit you or you kill people with the flag as you smoke bomb on top of them preventing heals from people outside the smokebomb.
Rogues are extremely useful to solo attack nodes as being one of the best 1v1 classes they provide the best opportunity to win the battle or worst case they can stop several people from capping for a very long time. While stealthed they can constantly Sap cappers from range without being caught. This works well when people think no one is at the node so keep riding away leaving only 1 person to cap. Also with all their cooldowns such as Vanish spell on the other. No matter what they do they can’t remove these from demolishers until they expire.
Pet Classes are especially useful in defending as they can attack flag carriers with themselves as well as the pet making them very hard to be crowd controlled and get the node before backup arrives. They last a lot longer than most classes as well Hunters, Warlocks and to some extent Mages are the best classes to solo defend nodes.
Knockbacks such as [Typhoon] and Thunderstormcan be readily abused on certain maps. Examples include the center in Eye of the Storm with the flag which probably stands out the most I’ve personally been knocked off at least 10 times there as well as in Arathi Basin knocking people off Lumbermill.
[Mind Control] can be used very effectively as a Crowd Control or to jump people off Cliffs like in Arathi Basin and Eye of the Storm exactly like the knock backs. The possible uses with [Mind Control] are endless.
Area of Effect spells are very good to use on nodes to prevent enemies from capping. Thunderclap, [Fan of Knives], [Typhoon], [Bladestorm], [Howling Blast],[Blood Boil] etc. Make sure you are checking nodes constantly if any enemy players are around and if you can’t stop them from capping make sure to call it out so someone can.
[Curse of Exhaustion] spam (non stop casting) is extremely strong in Strand of the Ancients on players as well as Demolishers as decursers are usually very limited. You can also use it to intercept people at Graveyards and slow the entire team from getting where they want to go.
That’s all for now, there are many other hints, tips and tricks out there but I feel this should be enough to start you off. If you have any more feel free to leave them in a comment below and will possibly add them into the article.
Falauris logging off.