1700+ Rating & Arena Strats~

Majeev Arena, 1700, PvP, FFXI, Maiev, Fenrir, Hunter, WoW

Arena Ranking: 1721

I’m so glad to reach this high in Arena PvP, its really a milestone – felt like I’ve actually accomplished something.

Anyway, this is a little um… experience that I’ve gained through PvPing in a controlled environment and equivalent equipment. It utilize a bit of psychology and going against rival’s play habits. This is a pretty long PvP strategy talk so… its won’t be everyone’s cup of tea ^_^ its for the crazy ones :)

Remember Mikedee? :o He PvP’s in WoW too, looking at his ranking, pretty good too but we aren’t in the same battlegroup :(

Arena 2v2: Star Onion Brigade

Teamates: Majeev, Cusi (We are both wearing a mixture of AF1, 2 pieces of AFv2, and 2 pieces of AFv3 in FF Language)

This week, our rating went from 1624 –> 1721. It was decent advancement if you ask me xD. We lost two times to the same team ~ Shadow Preist (blm) and a Warlock (sch) combo. Both times we tried different thing (eg, at the very least, we pick different target), but their damage was just way out of our reach. We are high but… they were much higher.

Our enemies utilize fear to let DoTs from both parties to kick in. Since Shadow Preist can enhance Shadow Damage, the spell from the Warlock was even significantly more powerful O.o. We lost to a combination setup if you ask me… they were just tuned to match each other, whereas Cusi and I… we don’t benefit each other at all.

But there’s a weakness. If the enemies were tuned for shadow damage reduction, then they are kinda fuked. We are a mixture melee and magic attack so… fairly balanced and not get owned often due to enemy’s configuration.

Overall a good run, next week I get an upgrade from [item]28332[/item] –> [item]33667[/item] (AFv1 –> AFv3) O.o its a big upgrade, will further push my Critical Strike chance to 34%.

There isn’t really a strategy, but only picking the right targets and doing the DPS.

Majeev Arena, 1700, PvP, FFXI, Maiev, Fenrir, Hunter, WoW

Arena 2v2: StarOnion Brigade

Choice of Equipment for this 2v2

When it comes to 2v2, its about either burst damage (to take one target down quickly) or burn out your enemy (use up their MP). Since we are both a DPS (DD) class, we utilize the burst damage strategy. We push out the highest damage in a very short time frame (which will get us exhausted) to take enemies down. When one is down, the other one would be easy.

Its either they die or we die, and the result is just a matter of 10 seconds.

So now we know what strategy to use… what about the type? There’s constant damage and spike damage. Blizzard’s mathematician worked out the math to make sure critical strike are balanced with attack power. Consider the graph on the right. Both will deal 5000 damage in the end but critical strike is really based on luck. If it doesn’t kick in then you’re screwed, hence most people will go for consistency. If we are both to take down one target, consistency would provide a more reliable result since… its only a matter of time when target dies… and not a matter of luck.

Some games might come out to be 40% crit (keeping stuff simple, no resilience), some come up as 28% crit but… it works out to be 34% in the end. Statistics tells us that =P

Majeev Arena, 1700, PvP, FFXI, Maiev, Fenrir, Hunter, WoW

Spike Damage vs Consistent Damage

But now lets say there’s a healer. What would you rather heal? Lets get back to a little bit of FF language here. If the target is 820/1000 hp left, what kind of cure would you cast? Most of us would choose a Cure 3 (for 180hp). If you heal again and your target is now at 820/1000, what would you cast again? Cure 3? Conclusion? He only takes damage around a Cure 3, so I’d just cast Cure 3. Its the image that we give to the other team. Again at 820/1000, and again… now what did you tell the other healer? He’s taking very constant damage so all I have to do is keep small cures on him.

Now… here Majeev comes with massive critical strike. I hit once for 910/1000 hp left, healer cast Cure 2, target heals up but this time, I do a Critical Strike and took him down to 620/1000 HP. The healer panics and casts a Cure 4.

What if I Crit again? and again? Big Cures cost a lot of MP. Although I might deal less damage (crit-strike based equipment) compare to someone who totally equips themselves with attack-power based equipment (consistency), but what I give to the enemy is… surprises. It is much harder to heal a target who “occasionally” takes amazingly high crit damage that high predictable consistent damage. You never know if next one is going to Crit.

Crits usually don’t do as much damage as consistent damage, but spike damage makes it harder to heal, hence the healer gets exhausted at a much faster rate, making up the potential damage loss from going crit-tuned equipment.

Cures takes time to cast… so you got to take into account the future too. What if the target suddenly got stunned or out of range? There are a lot of circumstances and… as a healer, you would want your teammates to be topped off 24/7.

So for me, I just stacked up on Critical Strike. It is much harder to heal through Crits than Medum-High constant damage. Crits are very luck based but if you don’t take into account that chance, your target might die due to very unlucky crits at the wrong time. So far its been working for me… targets die without knowing what exactly happened :D. Also, in Raids, most tanks just takes constant damage so.. most of the time you’re throwing out constant cures for 10-15minutes. Well I’m also going against what people usually do: to heal consistently and conservative about MP. If you heal constantly, you will be surprised at my Crits and… will cause you to fail.

Another thing, there’s a pet ability in my talent tree call Go For the Throat. When my arrows Critical Strike, my pet gains 50 Focus (50 TP in FFXI), and my pet can use those 50 Focus to either deal 150 more damage or put Flee on for 15sec to chase the enemy (Ability on a pet uses Focus or TP in FFXI). So although I might deal less damage, but when I Crit, not only I make up for my low ass damage but.. my pet will also deal extra damage due to TP so… IMO it works out to be the same in the end.

How much Crit do I need?

Majeev Arena, 1700, PvP, FFXI, Maiev, Fenrir, Hunter, WoW

Your chance to Crit a player with 400 Resilience! (Full BG Eq)

It depends on your class, but for a Hunter, you just need to stack all Attack Power (AP) or all Crit. Let me attempt to explain this.

Nowadays with “Welfare Epics”, which you can gain from Battleground, most people that goes to Arena have roughly 400 Resilience.

Resilience scales like this.

Every 100 Resilience you have on yourself, your chance of being Crit Strike by Enemy is reduced by 2.5%. A typical Season 1 Arena equipment gives roughly 400~ (lets say its 400), so if we plot that out, pretty much your first 10% Critical Strike is being reduced by enemy’s gear. So for a Hunter with 10% Crit and enemy player having 400 Resil… this puts you at 0% to score a Critical Strike on Enemy…

After 10% (assuming again, typical player have 400 Resil), it scales in a linear fashion. So that’s why it isn’t a good idea to have a balanced setup. Either you Crit and let your Crit make up the damage loss from lower attack power, or stack up on attack power and just forget about scoring a Crit on enemy player overall.

Which one should you pick? It depends if some of your ability kicks in due to Crits. For me, my pet gets 50 Focus (TP) when I Crit, so I’m going to want to Crit. Not only allowing me to make up my damage loss, but my pet can gain Flee and chase enemy.

Majeev Arena, 1700, PvP, FFXI, Maiev, Fenrir, Hunter, WoW

TaruTaru Pwnography in Action

Arena 5v5: TaruTaru Pwnography


WoW Name (Linked to Armory) / FF if there’s one (Equipment quality, in FF Language) – Class / FFXI Job Equivalent

  • Majeev / Maiev in FFXI (AF1, 2x AF2, 2x AF3) – Hunter/Ranger
  • Cusi / Cus in FFXI(AF1, 2x AF2, 2x AF3) – Warlock / Scholar (high DoT’s)
  • Eviltaru / Evilkid in FFXI (5x AF1) – Warlock
  • Urdeadbaby (Lv45 Luisant Equipment x4, 1x AF1) – Warrior
  • Hkshady / Quit FFXI too long ago (Seer’s gear x3, AF1 x2) – Frost Mage / Black Mage

So as you see, our equipment are pretty bad… well my teamates, but we were able to bring our team from 3 win 7 losses (lowest this week) to… 18 win 16 losses. With a pretty interesting strategy.

We played around with our combination, and finally decided we use 5 dps for our team. (5 DD’s). You’re like.. no heals? Nope. When 3-4 (typical setup) DD gank on one person, you won’t last long anyway, your healer is probably goin buy.. 3-4 more seconds of time? While the person is being ganked, they are probably being smashed with every single stun ability there is in the game … so okay, you extend their life expectancy but they still aren’t any help because they were just stunned.

So no heals, straight DPS team, so we ended up with Hunter Warlock x2 Mage and Warrior (Ranger, 2 Scholar, BLM and Warrior)

The Psychology for TaruTaru Pwnography

Since we aren’t fighting AI’s here, so we got to research into how most people would likely to react to different combinations. Out of the massive readings, we were able to conclude that.. most team choose to burn down the class (job) that’s got less armor. It practically makes sense since they take most damage. To generalize…

Cloth > Leather > Mail > Plate (In FFXI, its Aquarian > D/N Abjurations > W/E Abjurations > M. Abjurations)

I’d say 90% of the team uses this, and I am not surprised since most games give cloth (casters) powerful spells, but trade off with a weaker self defense, hence lesser armor.

So to make sure our clothies survive, we have a Frost (17/0/44) Mage. Frosties have an ability call Ice Block, which cage himself in a block of ice, making himself invulnerable for 10 seconds. We usually have our mage go in Frost Nova (AoE Bind), burn all cooldowns (2hrs), then Ice Block (Invulnerable). This buys us roughly 20 seconds of time before the enemy could possibly kill him. This is a much better strategy than having the healer out-heal 4 person hitting a single target IMO. Anyway…

If the enemy doesn’t pick the mage (blm), they will probably choose one of the two warlocks. To buy us roughly 20seconds, our warlocks are geared for Stamina, meaning all their equipment are HP based (BBQ ring, Cassie earring etc), sacrificing damage potential. Eviltaru is affliction (stronger DoTs), whereas Cusi is Demology (higher survivability). So to encourage them to hit Cusi, we walk out in a specific formation. We’ll get back to formation in a bit.

Warlocks utilize dots, so all they have to do is land all dots on all targets before they die, and it will be good damage. Of course they will also utilize Silences and Fears (Sleepgas)

These two warlocks are equipped with 400+ resilience (Dmg reduction equipment eg. Jelly Ring), rendering them extremely hard to kill.

If the enemies doesn’t pick any of the Warlock or Mage (hence our Warriors), Warriors are equipped with Plate (M.Body-grade defense), making them hard to kill in the first place. The Warrior can usually survive for a good 10-15sec in a Focus fire situation, so this is all the time we really need. They are not likely to get picked, unless we make him vulnerable (hence, Fleeing into the enemy groups).

The weakest link of this 5v5 team, is the Hunter (me ._.) I have no way of surviving a 5 man Focused Fire. The only thing I can do is pop Immunity (Beastral Wraith) for 18 seconds, placed Frost Trap (AoE Gravity) and kite the enemy. My equipment is tuned for Critical Strike, so its only ~ 345 resillence. So how do we get the enemy to less likely to target me? Lets now talk about formation.

The Formation.

To encourage our enemy to pick Warlocks and Mage as their primary target. We have the following setup when walking into the Arena room. We walk into the arena room strictly in this order. A little bit of Neuro-linguistic here =P

Front to Back: 2x Warlocks > Warriors > Hunter > Mage.

Like FFXI, tabs goes from left to right.When people click us in order, they will see two Warlocks at the front (Cloth class!!!). A team who’s in rush of fight will pick them, which is exactly what we wanted. Now say the team don’t engage us right away and analyze our class, they will click our team in the order above (Since in WoW, tabbing also goes left to right… generally). Warlocks, Warlocks, Warriors, Hunter, Mage! Since Mage is the last they click and seems vulnerable, the image of killing the mage is more… apparent than any other. If you read the order again (Scholar, Scholar, Warrior, Ranger, Blm) and read it a few times, does the word BLM kinda pops out of your mind? They sound weak, and we make sure we leave the impression of “MAGE” in their mind after analyzing, encouraging them to target the mage or any of the mages.

This is applying a person’s thinking behavior neuro linguistic programming. Remember these are players and not AI’s. We cannot talk to them so the only way to alter their decision is how we present it ourselves. We cannot make them choose what we want, but we can influence their choices =P

Majeev Arena, 1700, PvP, FFXI, Maiev, Fenrir, Hunter, WoW

Almost dead, resting up :D

The Teamwork

A success of a 5v5 team IMO is teamwork and focus fire. When you go into the room, and we all take a target while the enemy focus fire, they will kill 1 target faster than us, hence making us the loser. Therefore, we have a branching targeting system not only to focus target so we don’t click into each other’s target, thinking its the right target.

The Warrior have our first victim targeted, Cusi and I (Majeev) target what the Warrior targets, and Hkshady and Eviltaru assist one of us respectively.

When a battle begins in Arena, it is a mess. Everyone moves around without knowing where they are going, and we are all focused into doing the right thing so… its an absolute confusion. Therefore, to keep confusing low and same target, even if one person mistarget (say me), 3 other person is still on the same target while I correct my mistakes.

To further enhance the accuracy of our target, we call out targets on Ventrilo, with their Class (Job) and first letter of their name. This is to avoid people with same class and same race (Taru Blm). Besides, most BLM are Tarus, so calling “kill Taru Blm” might be like the stupidest thing you can do. Although they are easy to identify, but it can cause confusion if the enemy uses 5 BLM. Therefore, we used the first letter of their name + class. The chances of that being coincidence is… low. (Having two of the same class and same first letter of their name).

During the battle, we shout if one member of their team is down, so we move onto their next target. Since it will be in a mess, our next target will most likely the player with lower health. (Except Pally and Discipline Preist)

The Plan

Picking targets is an art. But the way we pick targets is.. how well they survive in a gank. We have come up with a method call… “Find the Hunter (Ranger)”

Before we choose why a hunter is always our first target, lets look at all other classes and their anti-gank ability.

Mage have ice block, so that’s no go (8 seconds of Invulnerability)
Paladins have Bubble (10~ seconds of Invulnerability), so tat’s also no go.
Rogues can Instant Re-Stealth (hide) during a fight, allowing him to get out of danger, so that’s no go. They also have clock of Shadows.
Preists (Holy and Discipline) have high healing power. They can cure themselves to full and stay alive a 5 man gank for over 40-50 seconds. So that won’t be our target either.
Druids have fast running speed and healing power. They are the RDM in WoW. They could also stealth, so that makes it not only difficult to kill, but difficult to chase down due to their fast running speed. Their heals is also very quick (fast cast), making them a bad target.
Shamans are the Bards in FFXI. They utilize Totems to give the team Auras. One of them is Earth Binding Totem (AoE Gravity). Sticking a few Totems (such as Regen ones), making them hard to kill. Plus they can also heal.
Warriors are okay, they have plate armor but… they are just a pain in the ass to kill.
Warlocks have AoE Fears (Sleepga). We could kill him, but due to Soul Link, they are higher HP than they look.

This leaves… Hunter… we do have Feign Death but… its too obvious in Arena because there’s a counter above (5/5 Member alive) which gives it away instantly. The only thing we can do is pop immunity and that’s it (That’s only if you’re a Beast Mastery). So in a team like ours, we find the other team’s hunter and bring it down.

Arena 5v5 Experience.

We’ve successfully bring our games from 3 Wins and 7 loss to 18 Wins and 16 losses. This puts this strategy a 15 Win and 9 Loss. We’ve learned from a lot of our games too, and some of the loss were due to careless mistakes by one individuals. Here’s a few things~

  • Always walk up to the enemy as a team. Our warriors once charge up to the enemy (Flee into Enemy groups) and this gives our enemy 1-2 seconds of free DPS time. We don’t have a healer so… we need all our HP.
  • Be Patience. If the enemy got Shaman and placed Totems on the ground that gives out Auras (Bard song equivalent), then we cannot fight in the enemy’s base. We will have to sit here as long as it takes until they move up.
  • Focused Target: This not only concentrates our damaging power onto a single target allowing them to die faster, but we focus our ability usage on the current target such as Mortal Strike or Aimed Shot, which reduces the healing done to target by 50%.
  • Stick with your mistakes. If the leader calls our the target and you think its wrong in mid-fight. Stick with it. By splitting damage, you reduce the chance of taking down a target, reducing your chance to win overall.
  • Utilize Crowd Control. AoE Binds, AoE Fears (Sleeps) are all nice ability that should be spammed.
  • Kite your enemy should you get hit. You don’t take less damage when you kite them, but you don’t take damage when your enemy don’t even chase you (or react fast enough). That’s a stamina boost.
  • Last but not least. Its just a game!! Being pissy, bitching and blaming at your teamates for their errors is the last thing you want to do. This is a team game, and discouraging others is already a loss to begin with. Team spirit is needed to win anything, and you need all five of it. This is why I hate Ballista, people blame me for not healing on RDM, and I was like, fuk it! (It was my first ballista too…)

I like to say “Its all good” and just laugh or smile. A smile is the solution to all problems. Smile and the problem is resolved. Seriously, they don’t need more blame than they already have. They probably know it themselves and… don’t need you to remind him again.

Majeev Arena, 1700, PvP, FFXI, Maiev, Fenrir, Hunter, WoW

PvP Lovers on our server!

In terms of winning, it involves we picking the right target and enemy falling for our psychological plan. If they pick our mage, we instantly gain 8 seconds of damaging time because they are waiting for Mage’s Ice Block to wear off. Whereas if they pick the Warlock, NP, they are just Dotting them up then die. Even if they die, its all good since DoTs last awhile. The only vulnerable to our team is the Hunter. I must be alive to do damage so… I gotta stay alive, and part of the luck is the enemy not picking me as target. If they do, I pop out my Evasion Aspect, trap and start kiting lol.

I’m glad WoW PvP is this fun. Well balanced, thrilling and… rewarding. Sorry to say but… FFXI PvP is just… a failure. FFXI is just not a PvP game afterall… so I hope you aren’t enjoying that aspect of it cuz.. if you do, WoW is for you. Play it right, its fun :)

Btw, this 5v5 strategy is a burst damage strategy, and requires a significant amount of equipment to do so. It doesn’t fit everyone so… just treat it as a good read. There is no one strategy works all for Arena, but this one works with our Combos.

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