PvP Tier System?

#1 - May 9, 2018, 2:11 a.m.
Blizzard Post
Obligatory disclaimer, yes I know it's datamined stuff without much context, etc etc. Basing feedback off assumptions and none of this may actually be applicable as things get hooked up.

MMO-champ's datamining revealed PvP-tiers for 2's, 3's, and RBGs that are set ratings attached to the existing PvP titles. It's unclear whether or not these are going to replace or be awarded alongside the current method of awarding seasonal titles.

Personally, I'm not a fan - the competitive ladder has awarded the top X% of players with their appropriate titles and due to that system, ratings to achieve those rewards fluctuate throughout the season as more and more players fight and the better players rise.

The thrill of competition and pride in achieving "top X%" suffers when you are given set goalposts. It becomes less about being among the top and more about pushing until you reach the threshold you're happy with and sitting.

I believe Elite sets already serve the guaranteed, nonfluctuating reward need already, at least how it was handled in Legion. Achieving 2k guarantees you a set of unique armor once the gear set rotates out, regardless of all other factors in the ladder, and those who want to continue to push for glory have that option.

If anything, I believe there should be another 1-2 reward thresholds for the lower end of the bracket, because it's hard to tell someone that they get nothing worthwhile for their time unless they are among the best capable of reaching 2k or higher. A seasonal "Challenger" title isn't very compelling; there needs to be tangible rewards earlier to encourage participation at the low end. This, in turn, could bring people interested but otherwise unmotivated to try to improve their skill into the pool of arena regulars, so that they too might see themselves among the higher tiers one day.

It's very hard to convince someone to spend hours and hours of time researching, practicing, and enduring the frustrations of learning how to PvP when they won't have anything to show for it unless they're among the best... 20% I think is about what the 2k ratings are at for Elite gear? Slap on a seasonal pet or something at the 1650-1700 area and the average player will have a reasonable goal to strive for, with enough commitment involved to decide if arenas are right for them going forward.

ALL THIS ASIDE, if the system is going to replace the current title distribution system, please re-evaluate the rating requirements.

Unranked: 0 - 1400
Combatant: 1375 - 1600
Challenger: 1575 - 1800
Rival: 1775 - 2100
Duelist: 2075 - 2400
Gladiator: 2375+

Rival starting at 1800 is extremely low, as the cutoff recently has been upwards of 1900-2000 and thus Duelist is also too low. I'm of the opinion that 1550 should be the starting point for rewards. It's the very first rating achievement you get, even!
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Game Designer
#3 - May 9, 2018, 3:31 a.m.
Blizzard Post
In BfA we are doing some meaningful re-structuring of the PvP itemization system, as well as the ranking system. We're still massaging the system, but we'd like to share some details which may help alleviate some of your concerns. Keep in mind some of this stuff could still change. No pony promises.

New ranking system
We're updating the ranking system to better mirror the other games at Blizzard. WoW via arena is actually one of the first competitive games at Blizzard to have a rating system, so it's fair to say it's time for an update.

To that end we want to bucket players in rankings similar to StarCraft or Overwatch using labels such as Gold, Platinum etc. (We're still going to have our own titles (Challenger, Rival, Duelist etc.)) We feel these rankings have grown to common verbage in the competitive PvP community so we're happy to bring them to WoW. Keep in mind that you'll still be able to see your rating at end of match and within the UI. And we're also looking to add your actual rank in the UI as well (as in, you're rank #10 in the region).

New iLevel reward scheme
Similar as in Legion, we're going to reward you with better gear based upon your competitive standing. However, in Legion we rewarded you incrementally in a linear fashion. So as you gained more rating, your iLevel gradually increased. We found this didn't reflect the distribution of players very fairly in terms of appropriate reward for effort in the system. (Translation: The iLevel of rewards was generally too low) In result we're changing the distribution instead to be something of a bell curve, to match the new ranking system.

What this means is that players in Challenger/Gold (1600-1800 around) will have a chance at ~Normal raid quality loot, Rival/Platinum (starting around 1800) with Heroic Raid quality loot, and so on.

Epic Appearances and other rewards
Different rewards will be tied to different rankings. In Legion you got the entire Epic appearance when you hit 2000 rating, in BfA this will be gradually rewarded to you at different ranks. And you will instantly get the look after you achieve that rank, rather than a end of season calculation.

We totally get the concerns with potentially too broad of brackets. And we definitely agree the competitive spirit often burns brightest at the highest ratings, so it's something we'll be mindful of. Season Gladiator mounts (and likely glad titles) will still be a % distribution at end of season like in the past, and we could see new rewards for the upper brackets as we shift some of the others (Epic appearances) downwards.

Weekly Conquest
As discussed in the past, we're introducing a conquest system based upon past designs. You will earn conquest from doing PvP activities (mostly rated, but some also from War Mode) that will fill a bar for a reward each week. This is intended to be attractive to the average player.

One of our biggest goals with the new system is to better align the effort and reward in contrast to all of the other parts of the game, especially at the lower rankings who perhaps in Legion (or in the past) didn't see it as worth their time. I think we can all agree that more players doing competitive PvP is a worthwhile goal.

We hope to have these systems live in beta soon, and hope to hear your feedback!
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Game Designer
#6 - May 9, 2018, 3:44 a.m.
Blizzard Post
05/08/2018 08:42 PMPosted by Gurbo
Will there be any incentive to do casual BGs? Perhaps a small daily reward of conquest?

New system sounds great otherwise.

Our current thought is you'll get a good chunk of conquest for first win of the day (Normal Battlegrounds as well as Epic Battlegrounds), as well as a little bit for wins.
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Community Manager
#50 - May 9, 2018, 6:02 p.m.
Blizzard Post
05/08/2018 08:31 PMPosted by Phalanx
No pony promises.