January 13, 2008

Screenshot Sunday: World PvP Remembered

This week's screenshot features one of my favorite moments in World of Warcraft ever, as well as my first real taste of WoW celebrity. Operation: Everything Must Die was a 900+ person world PvP raid orchestrated on Dark Iron by the Penny Arcade Alliance (with which my guild, Annarchy, just so happens to be affiliated).

On November 29th, 2006, just days before dishonorable kills were removed from Blizzard's honor formula, we canceled all scheduled raids in the 12-guild Alliance just moments before they were about to begin, and launched a multi-pronged attack against every major horde city, with additional groups of lowbies sent to Brill, Tarren Mill, and Crossroads.

The shot above is from my mage's archives, and made the rounds of WoW blogs and websites back in the day (in most, you can still see the green bar representing my Brood of Nozdormu rep on Firkin). Just moments before this picture was taken, Annarchy and the Disciples of Divx were stationed at the bottom of Darrowmere Lake waiting for the signal to invade the Undercity, with warlocks providing underwater breathing to everyone as we summoned more people in. As the attacks on other cities got underway, we surfaced and grouped up to charge.

Once inside Undercity, the lag made every cast a thirty-second affair. With the news that Cairne, Thrall, and Vol'jin had bit the dust, we killed Varimathras and had Sylvanas to 50% when the server went down for the first time. Dark Iron never really recovered for the rest of the night.

Thinking back, it'd be nice if Blizzard provided a little more incentive and technical support for large-scale world events like this (fingers crossed for the Sunwell opening events not being as laggy as the AQ gates). Right now, forming a world PvP raid to kill a racial leader gives a small amount of gold per raider, plus a chunk of honor. Though I'm not sure exactly how much you get these days, I do know that I see far fewer capital city raids than I used to; with a few exceptions, people have found better ways to spend their time.

Back in December, Eners on Drak'thul gave a number of suggestions for how to encourage raids to take on the racial leader, instead of abandoning this aspect of the game entirely. His thoughts:

  • Boost the gold and honor reward for killing faction leaders
  • Create a cool buff (like the Warchief's blessing, or the turn-in for Magtheridon, Onyxia, or Nefarion's head) that would increase honor gained by everyone involved in the kill for the next hour
  • Make a new title for players who've killed all of the opposing faction's racial leaders
  • Develop a quest or quest line that rewards honor or rare loot for killing racial leaders
Silvais of Dragonmaw server adds one more suggestion to the mix: why not let each racial leader have a small chance of dropping a unique version of their race's mount?

How about you guys: have you raided the opposing faction's capital cities? What kinds of changes would make you want to go mano-a-mano with Thrall or Bolvar?


gmillerd said...

Just make the leader have a chance of dropping their racial mount, boom instant leader kills.

Sadly most would just be farmed, not many defend leader kills on the servers I have seen.

Arren said...

The day I hit 70, my entire guild raided Crossroads enroute to Ogrimar. With 30 people or so, the Crossroads raid went considerably better than the one on the Orc stronghold, but it was epic nonetheless.

And I wouldn't necessarily want anything out of killing the leaders (though a title sounds cool). Just make the lag issues go away and I'd bet you'd see a lot more of it than what happens now.

Arren said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tanneneth said...

I think we got close to downing Sylvanas on our server because noone on the Horde really fought back and just thought they'd get killed by guards until we actually started killing the royal guards and killed Varimathras. Then the strongest Horde guild (Shai Hulud)decides to kill them and well, fighting npcs and the best horde guild on the server at the same time is pretty hard and they got whipped good. But hey it was fun.

Anonymous said...

A raid that size is very impressive. Born on pvp servers, world pvp used to be quite frequent on Illidian and Laughing Skull (the two servers I was on for the first year and a half).

I have old screenshots (pre-DK)of our raid on Undercity as well. We did not kill the Lady S...but we got close. Ok, not as close as we'd have liked...

But it was fun regardless. It was just a 40 man raid. At least we made it to see Lady S. We tried 5 more times on full wipes...every single person rez'd and kept trying. It was inspiring to see so many people so eager to work together like that.

lux said...

i remember that raid! i myself was running around on my first character, still wet behind the ears, probably somewhere around level 40, and stumbled into darnassus to find the biggest group of people i'd ever seen in wow. i was in complete awe, and also had no idea what was going on. now, much later, i've joined up with the PAA, and have come to learn that what i happened across has gone down as legend. i'm glad i was there to dance. (:

Arvelen said...

It's interesting how you bring this up only one day after the Horde on Moon Guard rally together to attack the Alliance cities - in about 30 minutes, every raid-boss level leader for the Alliance was dead... And apparently this was also done on Dec 22 by the Horde on Eredar.

I said...

First time hearing about this massive amount of people joining together to kill :D. Very impressive.

This past Saturday, in an effort to revive world PVP on Dragonmaw an Alliance Guild put together a Horde vs Alliance showdown at BRM. About 100+ Horde showed up and they outnumbered Alliance but it was still fun. The lag was horrible though.

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