Disclaimer: Let me get a few things out of the way first. This is simply a suggestion I made for fun and I'm posting it to see what others think about this topic. Constructive criticism is always appreciated but pointless flaming will be ignored. Some or many of this might not even be possible, but here goes.
This is a long read. At least attempt to skim most of it before commenting. Thanks!
---------- WoW Instanced PvP Overhaul ----------
Instanced PvP has become a standalone game within WoW itself. It has now gotten to the point where even gear has been all but removed in favor of a new "level playing field" system. This in and of itself is not a bad thing, however the interface and systems behind instanced PvP are outdated and don't contribute to Blizzard's division of instanced PvP from the rest of the game.
Blizzard always talks about their desire to add additional battlegrounds, but they're afraid off adding too many to the ever-increasing pool of current battlegrounds out there. They have talked about cycling out unpopular battlegrounds for newer ones, or creating a rotation of some sort, but I think they're missing the bigger problem here. The problem isn't that there are too many battlegrounds (quite the opposite actually). The problem lies in how the queuing system lumps every single battleground together into one big queue. The band-aid fix has been to allow players to veto two maps they hate (which currently means AV and IoC since they take forever to finish and are generally disliked in their current sate).
Idea 1 (short term) - Updated Queuing System:
First and foremost, please read (or at least skim) most of the ideas before criticizing as they all work together to make this overhaul plausible. Premade groups of any size can now sign up for casual battlegrounds! No longer are you restricted to playing with only five of your buddies or guild mates. A new queuing system would help counter potentially overpowered premades by prioritizing potential matches that would pit similarly sized premades against each other. For Example: if a premade group of 12 queues up for a battleground, the queuing system will try to match them with a similarly sized premade group of around 9 - 15. The longer they are in queue, the more lax the queuing algorithm will be in trying to find a suitable opponent. In addition players are now bound to the role in which they signed up for (meaning you can't queue as a healer and then switch to dps spec).
The queuing system also takes into account the number of games a premade group has won. (A premade group is considered a group of consistent players that makes up at least 50% of the team). The more games a group wins, the more likely they are to be pitted against opposing teams that have also been winning.
Idea 2 (long term) - Battleground Playlists:
Battlegrounds are now categorized into groups called playlists. When opening the PvP tab, the player can choose to queue up for one or more of these playlists. This would replace the current "random bg" queue and give players more choice over which styles of battlegrounds they wish to partake in. Currently, there isn't a large enough selection for this to be feasible, however it would allow Blizzard to add more battlegrounds of a certain type without the fear of over saturating instanced battlegrounds in general. The following playlists are ones I thought best describe the current selection; they are slightly modified from Blizzard's categories on their website and, with the addition of more battlegrounds, are very subject to change:
- Capture the Objective
- Warsong Gulch
- Twin Peaks
- Silvershard Mines
- Zone Control/Resource Race
- Arathi Basin
- Eye of the Storm
- Battle for Gilneas
- Deepwind Gorge
- Temple of Kotmogu
- Strand of the Ancients
- Isle of Conquest *
* Isle of Conquest would require a revamp, making the map smaller and the team size would be reduced to 15.
** Alterac Valley has not been mentioned for a reason. Read Battleground Holidays below to see why I did not include it here!
I realize that some battlegrounds are a mix of multiple types, and there are a couple of ideas I had for these oddballs. However I think the best thing is to just classify them under a pre-existing playlist until different versions of those mixed gameplay types are made. The purpose of this simple restructuring is to pave the way for the possibility of having at least 4 - 5 versions of every gameplay type. Giving players the ability to say "hey, I wanna play some CTF bgs right now" and not be penalizing them (as the current system does) opens up the ability of adding more battlegrounds without presenting the possibility that certain ones are lost to the RNG selection of the current "random bg" system.
By separating battlegrounds in this fashion, Blizzard can also customize the rewards for a win/loss based on each type. This would make potentially longer games more attractive. In addition, weekly bonuses can be given for playing each playlist. A weekly bonus would allow players to play each type of battleground at their leisure while also ensuring that the player pools for all battlegrounds stays at least semi-populated.
Idea 3 - Lobby and Aftermath:
When a queue pops, the player will enter a lobby with their teammates and the opposing team. During a short intermission, players will be able to choose from 2-3 randomly selected maps (depending on the number of maps Blizzard has made for the given playlist). The map with the most votes is selected. In the case of a tie, a random map from the same playlist is selected. This lobby not only allows players to vote, organize, and communicate with their teammates, but it also conveniently shows the players you're playing with and against (including their rank).
At the end of a game, an updated score screen will be presented. This new score screen will recognize notable players and their accomplishments and award accolades for their work (i.e. most kills/healing around an objective, etc). Players will then be able to vote one of the recognized characters as MvP of the match, giving them a small bonus in rewards. This is similar to Overwatch's system.
Furthermore, the aftermath of a battleground starts another intermission phase, allowing players to either leave or queue again with the same people. This encourages teams that worked well together to continuing playing which also increases the chance to form new friendships and make deeper connections among players. The previously mention queuing system would stay in effect, so premade teams are equally matched against similarly sized premade teams.
Idea 3 - Battleground Holidays:
Battleground Holidays are back and better than ever! Instead of being a randomly selected battleground that people are then forced to constantly run for better rewards, A single large-scale battleground is made available exclusively during this time period. Large-scale battlegrounds are 40 vs 40 battles which last much longer than your average instanced battleground. They often incorporate PvE aspects into the game and are known for their big, epic, and chaotic feel.
With this said, large-scale battlegrounds have a slightly different rewards system. Instead of giving all the rewards at the end of games, they are distributed once a player leaves (or finishes) the battleground. The amount and quality of your reward is based on your participation and time spent in the battleground. There is also no penalty for for leaving a large-scale battleground at any time (although afk penalties do apply). In addition, each large-scale battleground has it's own set of unique rewards that can only be acquired by gaining reputation and currency for that particular battleground. These unique rewards are purely cosmetics. Furthermore, a tally of the number of wins for the Horde and Alliance is kept over the course of each Battleground Holiday. Once over, the side with the most wins will receive additional reputation and currency, distributed to players who participated in the battleground. (This would need some work due to cross-server gameplay and such).
Current large-scale battlegrounds are:
Classiv AV is back in all of it's former glory. The resource system is removed, guards hit harder than ever, the turn-in rewards are now key to winning, and the games last for much longer than a mere 15-20 minutes.
Wintergrasp is now turned into an instanced battleground. The size of the map is reduced to accommodate for the fact that this is now a 40vs40 map. The game must also undergo a few changes in order to be a balanced instanced battleground.
- Balancing the Start: The Horde and Alliance start at their respective graveyards and must assault a Wintergrasp keep that's unowned by either faction. NPC defenders would spawn to put up a fight, but it's primarily up to each team to race to the inner keep while sabotaging their opponents. This is done by capturing workshops (the only buildings that produce siege vehicles) to break down walls. Since each team's respective graveyard greatly favors attacking from a certain direction, the result will be a two-way assault from the east and west, with both teams meeting at the center keep to battle for control over Wintergrasp. Once one team claims Wintersgrasp, the keep is reset and they become the defenders and the other team becomes the attackers. The attackers now have 30 minutes to take the keep or they lose the battleground. (This idea is still in its infancy so any advice is greatly appreciated!)
Tol Barad is also turned into a 40v40 instanced battleground. The map size is reduced proportionally, and it must undergo tweaks to make it fit this new instanced play-style.
- Balancing the Start: The game starts with all three towers uncontrolled by either team. The first team to control all three towers becomes the defender. The game then carries on as usual.
Ashran must be heavily stripped of a lot of it's confusing side-missions, or changed so that it is more apparent what exactly is going on. This too would become a 40v40 instance battleground with the primary focus being to push the enemy all the way to their base and defeating the opposing faction's leader.
Idea 4 - Weekly Modifiers:
Another constant issue with instanced PvP lies in the repetitiveness of it. An interesting solution to this problem would be the introduction of weekly modifiers. Each week, a battleground is picked at random and modified in a unique way. Players would also be able to create skirmishes that have one or more modifiers enabled (purely for fun).
Here are some examples of modifiers I was thinking of:
- Warsong Gulch
- Hidden Flag Carries: Flag carriers are no longer displayed on the map. In addition, the timer is doubled but rewards are distributed to compensate for the extended time of the game.
- Flag Toss: The flag carrier gains an ability, allowing them to throw the flag to a teammate within 20 yards. 3 second cast. 15 second cooldown (yes, it's interrupt-able too)
- Arathi Basin
-Home Field: Capturing the enemy's closest node (Stables for the Alliance, Farm for the Horde) now also subtracts resource points from the enemy.
-Presence: Nodes can now be slowly captured simply by having a larger force near the flag (think Eye of the Storm) in addition to the normal method. Capturing a node the normal way automatically fully claims the node for your team.
- Silveshard Mines
-Weighted Carts: Players are able to jump into carts. While a player is in a cart, the amount of resources that particular cart is worth increases (up to a cap). During this time, the player cannot cast or attack. (The resource cap needed to win is also increased to compensate)
-Targetable Carts: Carts can now be slowed by enemy attacks and are susceptible to opposing teams' knockback effects. Carts have their own internal diminishing returns on CC.
- Temple of Kotmogu
Players who hold an orb now gain an ability that allows them to throw an orb to a teammate within 20 yards. 1.5 second cast. 15 second cooldown. Able to cast while moving. (Throwing the orb does not reset the debuff associated with that orb)
Each orb now has an additional effect that's applied to the holder:
- Green: Reduces healing received when above 75% but increases healing received when at or below 50%.
- Purple: Spell damage taken is increased by 15%, but spell damage done is also increased by 15%
- Red: Physical damage taken is increased by 20% but physical damage dealt is also increased by 20%.
- Blue:Spells and abilities cost 25% more but the cooldown of abilities is reduced and haste is increased.
- Eye of the Storm
-Manual Capture: Allows nodes to be captured by manually clicking on the flag drop-off in addition to the normal method. Manually capturing a node turns the bar fully in your team's favor.
-Golden Flag: The flag now rewards the same amount of points regardless of how many towers you have under your control.
- Battle for Gilneas
-Ghost Walkers: movement speed in ghost form is increased by 300%, making it possible for players to determine which base they revive at. In addition, you can also revive at uncontrolled bases.
-Rally Call: attacking and/or capturing a node instantly revives all dead players on your team. In addition, players are given a 150% movement speed buff for 10 seconds after reviving.
- Twin Peaks
-Flag Toss: The flag carrier gains an ability, allowing them to throw the flag to a teammate within 20 yards. 3 second cast. 15 second cooldown (yes, it's interrupt-able too)
-Graveyard Swap: Players now revive at the opposing team's graveyard.
- Deepwind Gorge
-Cart Drop-off: Running the enemy's cart through a mine that you control now drops off 1/3 of the cart's gold. Each mine can only be visited once per run.
-Increasing Capacity: Each successful capture of an enemy's cart increases the maximum amount of gold that the enemy can steal from your cart. Having your cart stolen also reduces the amount of gold that can be stolen from your cart next time (can't go below or above a certain cap).
- Strand of the Ancients
Demolishers no longer spawn, making bombs the only way to blow up gates. Once a bomb is placed, it can no longer be defused. Cannons no longer spawn as well.
Demolishers regain their ram
ability and players can jump into the side seats to support. Defensive cannons also have a new ability,
Disarming Shot: shoots a rocket that stuns all non-vehicle enemies for 3 seconds. Demolishers hit cannot fire their catapult for 6 seconds. Also causes players to drop their bombs. 6 second cooldown.
- No Isle of Conquest ideas because fuck IoC...
I'd love to hear feedback on this kind of idea!
Idea 5 - Rated Battlegrounds and Arenas:
FAQ and Concerns
Anyway this is my idea, comment and discuss Thanks for reading!