Greedy Goblin

Friday, October 22, 2010

What about Wintergrasp now?

As I wrote, you must do extraordinary things to be able to deliver your message. Winning WG on EU-Agamaggan alliance is such a thing. After the WG battles of Inglorious Gankers of Magtheridon, I thought that on a moderately horde-sided server it will be an easy task. What I missed was the disproportional effect of M&S on the outnumbering horde and us. To understand it, let's assume that the tenacity buff is perfectly balanced, so 20 alliance with tenacity and 40 horde has 50-50 chance to win on a head on zerg-deathmatch. Vehicles don't get the whole tenacity, they get the extra HP but not the damage. So if the horde has 4 vehicle drivers and the alliance has 4, the remaining 16 vs 36 is already disproportional. If we add that the players who knows what to do, drive the vehicles (while M&S do the zerging), it becomes clear that easily the whole intelligent alliance can be locked into vehicles, while the horde has remaining intelligent players as foot soldiers to escort their own vehicles or to attack ours.

On Magtheridon, with the high tenacity, our vehicle escort could practically oneshot a hordie. Here we don't have this tenacity as our "team" mostly consist of useless M&S who mindlessly attack hordies somewhere between the alliance GY and the keep (it's pretty close to SR, but not close enough for these beings to actually fight in SR).

The question is what shall we do? The answer of Rand is obvious: ignore WG or farm honor or practice small-team PvP or whatever. On the other hand if we want to recruit the usable part of the server, we must show them that we are worthy of their attention: win. Every time when we won against the odds, we got new recruits.

The first thing to see is that there is no other reason to win WG than recruiting. It does not provide any kind of meaningful reward and also not a challenge like a bossfight or rated BG, exactly because of the presence of M&S on both sides. If we lost, we lost because of the catapult-riding morons, if we win, we won because our concentrated attack killed the few intelligent hordies, while the horde M&S were zerging somewhere pointlessly. So if you don't care about WG as a recruiting tool, you shall not join the pre-made that is aimed to win. You won't enjoy it as the goal is not yours, and the way is not fun (filling holes made by M&S). Alternatively you can join if defeating the zerging horde give you some kind of satisfaction.

The second thing to see is that losing is bad PR. So if we can't win, we shall not be present or visible. If we are 5 and the expected alliance size is 25, then it will be almost impossible to win. 10/30 is easy on the other hand. So if we can't muster a force that is able to make difference, we shall stay out or just do random stuff silently, maybe even leave the raid to be even less visible.

The third thing is to create and us vs them feeling in the intelligent people (prospective recruits) against the catapult riding lolkids. So we shall include them in the pre-made. We shall form the pre-made on /trade, discussing the strategy in this group. This way they can see the power of planning over mindless zerging and also see that our guild have the ability of intelligent planning.

What do you think?

PS: Tol Barad will have less important vehicles, so it won't be so affected by size imbalances. By the way I can't imagine why tenacity do not affect vehicles properly.


Tal said...

The reason tenacity doesn't work "properly" is that vehicles are meant to destroy buildings, building HP does not scale based on tenacity, and the number of vehicles you can have is limited by the number of workshops and not which side has more people.

I have 1 issue with this post, though. How is saying:
If we lost, we lost because of the catapult-riding morons, if we win, we won because our concentrated attack killed the few intelligent hordies, while the horde M&S were zerging somewhere pointlessly.
any different than the M&S's "bad luck"? You're blaming arbitrary external forces that you can't control for whether or not you win.

Gevlon said...

That's why one must choose his battles. WG is far from optimal exactly because its large randomness. The post is mostly explaining why do I go there despite it.

For example flipping coins is completely random, CHOOSING to bet money on flipping coins is not.

Grim said...

How do you distinguish zerging lolkids from honor-farming goblins?

If alliance constantly loses, perhaps the good alliance players simply don't bother trying to win but just honor-farm. Its more fun than futile attempts at the keep.

Gevlon said...

@Grim: At first why would any goblin farm honor?

Secondly the best honor is defending south towers/graveyards in a small group. In the zerg the honorkill is distributed equally between you (who killed the hordie) and the cata-riding lolkid (who did nothing)

Visalyar said...

The premade WG-group never worked on oure realm, since the new joining-system. We´ve tryed that but we´re far too many Hordes. Since that point we also keep winning. Oure problem was the 120 to 40 WG balance to oure odds.
Since your realm seems to have few pvp-interestet alliance-player, so that you could form a premade group. I think that could work. Give the M&S simple tasks, as zerg at the west side of the fortress or distract the horde at point X.

I´m still researching the M&S behavior. How to encourage M&S to perform better. I made it to convince ~50% of my registered 20 M&S on my server, to get more performance. I´ve been polite, friendly but honest. Telling them that their attitude kills the fun of ~95%. I gave them some statistics I´ve done. Told them that this behaviour is pissing off more people than they´ll ever know.

The other 50% still seem hopeless. But I´ve joined up to one of our worst M&S guild. They´re known for the worst play-style worst spelling and most lolspeak on our server. I´m interestet what I´ll get out of them and how long I can keep with them.
I hope I can figure out how to encurage them to improve, be less annoying and get them reasonable without puffing anything about them.

I like to thank you again, Gelvon, giving me a direction to a very interesting research, filling my downtime before Cataclysm.

Bobbins said...

Isn't it silly to expect other players to support The Pug, to take orders from and thus provide 'free' welfare.

The Pug cannot own WG as it is an Alliance objective. Why would Alliance players of high ability and equipment choose to work towards your goals. ie whats in it for them?

Gevlon said...

@Bobbins: they also get the victory (bonus honor, VoA access, the "fun of winning).

Jack said...

I'd be interested in knowing what your recruiting channel message looks like.
Do you recruit in chat channels?

I might look into the interest of starting up a PuG-like guild here Stateside.
Right on down to your rules as posted.

Would you be against such an endeavour?

Gevlon said...

@Jack: why would I be. Go for it!

Squishalot said...

Gevlon, you didn't address Tal's question. How is your attitude to winning/losing any different from the M&S's 'bad luck, better luck next time'?

Also, have you ever considered that your loss may be due to the few intelligent hordies defeating your concentrated attack? Such as, as I've mentioned before, simply defending the keep walls and spotting your incoming demolisher? I think you're blaming your bad luck (i.e. your M&S screwing up) while attempting to take credit for your good luck (their M&S screwing up) - that's double standards.

John Newhouse said...

@Squishalot: If both side were balanced, it would be the same, but being outnumbered, the M&S feeding the smart horde have drastic impact on the outcome of the battle.

Horde M&S feed 4 of our smart alliance, while our M&S feed 16 smart Horde. So now, it is 16 Rank 2 smart horde vs 4 Rank 2 smart alliance. Battle is lost from there.

Gevlon said...

@Squishalot: there are factors out of our control. The M&S addresses them as "luck" without further investigation, therefore without chance to avoid/defeat them.

I recognized the M&S being problem in WG and found several solutions:
* leaving WG permanently (M&S is a permanent factor and and not "luck")
* bringing more people to WG (changing M&S:intelligent ratio)
* organize plans using the M&S as decoys.

M&S is an obstacle. It is not an EXCUSE for losses. I lost only because I couldn't find the sure way to counter them, nor found enough evidence to declare WG unwinnable.

Alrenous said...

Clearly the vehicle counts needs to scale with tenacity, along with their power.

The problem is there's nonlinearities, because the time that counts is facetime the tanks have with the wall.

Four tanks. One dies just as they reach the wall. You get three tanks for t/4, two tanks for t/4, and one tank for t/4. Total = 3t/4 + 2t/4 + t/4 = 6t/4 Effective dps time: 1.5t.

Add tenacity: two tanks. Two tanks doing double damage for t/4, one tank doing double damage for 2t/4.

4t/4 + 4t/4 = 2t. Even though I just halved the tanks but doubled their HP and damage. Because the damage drops less often, the integral doesn't come out right unless it uses the exact same endpoints.

To get the right answer you need to know exactly how much damage the tanks will take before they reach the wall, but even then it makes it swingy. The tanks will do mondo damage if they're NOT intercepted, plus they lose power automatically as the defence gains power.

In other words there may have been a good reason Blizzard never put vehicles in AV.

Shobbs said...

@Jack (up top)

If you open The PuG stateside, let me know what server you start on. I'd be all over that.

Townes said...

I think you can't go wrong with the us-vs.-them strategy. It is the ape subroutine, as you might refer to it, that has modern humans living in affluent societies fighting wars with high-tech weaponry as though we were still living in the tribal societies in which we evolved. It is the ape subroutine against which we fight a losing battle when we try to eliminate ethnic/religious hatred.

And this particular "us vs. them" mentality is already out there. It's in your blog, in the comments of your readers, and in forums all over the internet. The elite vs. the filth. I'm just guessing, and sometimes experiments trump common sense, but I think that your strategy for recruiting that way, discussing it in trade re. WG, ought to work.

I just love the irony of you writing about using the most deeply social instinct humans may have - us vs. them.

The Gnome of Zurich said...

yeah, I'll join a stateside PuG.

I haven't tried to start it myself, because I discovered when trying to do that for Undergeared, that I really don't have the time it takes to do it right. I was hoping for more people to help out with guild administration, but it really doesn't work that way.

honestly, I think you have to have your own real blog that you update to support it if you are going to do as little as leader as Gevlon does, and that's more than I was willing to do. And that's even a pug style guild.

Anonymous said...

It sounds reasonable, except for perhaps poor timing. I think it would have worked better 6 months ago or in two months. People are not as motivated by gear or performance now; and many fine cata players are currently unsubscribed.


There are additional "EVE Online"-style strategies .

1) Have an alt in the OPPOSING faction get in trade chat to drum up attendance and thus your tenacity

2) Have someone in your faction talking up some event to appeal to M&S (World event achievements?)

If you analyze what appeals to the people you want and what appeals to M&S and then use the proper message on the proper side.

Bobbins said...

I was going on the reasons to go to WG given by you

'The first thing to see is that there is no other reason to win WG than recruiting. It does not provide any kind of meaningful reward and also not a challenge like a bossfight or rated BG, exactly because of the presence of M&S on both sides.'

which became

'@Bobbins: they also get the victory (bonus honor, VoA access, the "fun of winning).'