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re: Lightmare's Arena Almanac


From Lightmare

Behold! Before you is the first and last comprehensive arena-based philosophical and rhetorical guide you'll ever need. This almanac contains all the self-improvement advice and thought-provoking discussion material you need to prosper and succeed in the current and future state of the World of Warcraft arena. This guide is both semantic and example based, specifically designed to help every kind of player in PvP and arena combat. Without further ado, let the power of knowledge flow through your veins and surge into your brain with all the unrelenquished ferocity of a wild tiger tearing through the wilderness of all that is success and victory. 


1. Learn EVERY class ability. This may seem to be a daunting challenge at first, but is actually much easier than it seems. One might think they only need to know the abilities of their class and that of their teammates, but that is a very incorrect observation. Knowing when and how to react to opponents' abilities is game-breaking and is truly the most fundamental skill that separates Gladiators from casual PvPers. 



2. Never underestimate the value of communication. Games are won and lost based on how much you and your teammates know about the state of the match. A common misconception is that one only needs to call out information reactively, after the fact or in occurrence, but this could never be more wrong. Your teammates should always know when your cooldowns and abilities are available, when you're about to use them, when you use them, and their state after use (Was your Polymorph dispelled? Did their Priest trinket your Hammer of Justice? Is your Fear on DR? Did their Mage steal your wings?). If you follow these rules your teammates will always know exactly what's going on in the game, and your play will improve tenfold. 


3. Don't become tunneled by your role. If you're the Shadow Priest in your Shatterplay, be prepared to heal anytime your Shaman is CCed. Mages always should be ready to decurse, that isn't just your healer's job. Rogues' only job isn't damage, peel for your partners! Always be aware of what's going on around you. Don't be that guy who's chasing their Resto Druid around the map while your partners are being locked down or killed. 


4. Have map awareness. Never stand out in the open against spellcleaves. Assess the threats facing you and react accordingly. If your team is LoSing behind the boxes on Dalaran Arena and you see their Priest running towards you, don't stand there and let him get a triple fear. Never chase Elemental Shamans out onto pillars. If you follow these rules you'll be guaranteed to last 50% longer outside of CC and should be taking much less damage. 


5. Don't be afraid to ask your team for help. Don't let your Ice Block be the only indication that you're in trouble. Ask for help before you're in dire straits and you might not even end up there. If you're the Lock in your MLP and you're being trained by a Death Knight, ask your Mage for peels as soon as you can. Don't try to explain that to them when they're looking at the damage report and see you behind by 60%. Don't expect your teammates to always know when you're in danger, they have a job to do too. Sometimes your Holy Paladin is busy kiting or healing and doesn't notice you need Hand of Freedom to chase down the kill target. Just ask!


6. Don't tunnel-vision your interrupts. Your job isn't just to interrupt every healing spell you see being cast. The most effective interrupt is the one the opponent doesn't see coming. Training the Lock? A focus Kick on the Paladin can lead to a hard switch resulting in a gib or several defensive cooldowns. Also, interrupting CC is the quickest way to turn a defensive game into an offensive victory. Think of it as an interception in Football; catching your opponent off-guard can completely derail their game plan and turn into a huge play. 


7. Pace yourself. This isn't Wrath of the Lich King. While damage still seems high, CC is abundant and games are more precise and calculated. Don't be surprised if your "Pop lust and zerg the healer" strat is completely countered by a Cyclone and a Mass Dispel. More often than not, your "victory rush" will result in more damage received than given. Stay map aware and save your cooldowns as currency for clutch interrupts or hard switches with CC. 


8. Key-Bind Everything. Having control over every ability is smart and one of the easiest ways to improve your play. For Locks and DKs, this also means having all your pet abilities and movement commands bound. Reaction time is everything, don't let your movement speed be the difference between winning and losing a match, latency is hard enough to counter. 


9. Learn Clutch Class Abilities. Not only does Turn Evil-ing a Lichbourne DK make you look badass, it can also win you the game. The same goes for mind fucking people with Blink, healing yourself with Lichbourne + Death Coil, throwing melée off the bridge in Blade's Edge with your Lock portal, and knocking off the entire other team with Thunderstorm. 


10. Don't make excuses. Excuses give you a reason to play badly. Blaming your gear is reasonable until it becomes the reason you Death Gripped a Grounding Totem, Strangulated a Warrior, trinketed Intercept, and stayed in Frost Presence while their entire team was beating on you, all in one game. I promise your team will respect you more if you take the blame instead of casting it, especially if they already have doubts about you. The first step to improvement is acceptance. 


11. Don't rage at your teammates. Your team should be your friends, the people you know you can rely on, the ones you know will have your back. Giving them a reason to hate you, distrust you, or not listen to you is conceding the game before it starts. If your criticism is justified, calmly explain it to them. If they're enissiphobic, you might want to find different teammates. Getting angry solves no problems; it doesn't lead to better play and it won't help your team perform better. 


12. Accept criticism. Your teammates want to help you. Their helping of you helps them. The helping of your team leads to better play. Better play leads to higher ratings. Higher ratings leads to Gladiator. Gladiator leads to rank 1 Gladiator. Rank 1 Gladiator leads to all the women you can ever dream of. Trust me. 


13. Practice makes perfect. Time heals all wounds, the same can be said for arena prowess. The four factors that make a player good are experience, dedication, skill, and gear, in that order. The most powerful thing you can have under your belt is experience. There is no silver bullet that leads to success, even though that's what some of you are hoping I can provide. Work hard and you will be rewarded. 


14. Don't underestimate yourself. Said another way, don't sell yourself short. If you know you're good, use it to your advantage. I'm not trying to create a new generation of self-righteous egomaniacs, but realizing your full potential is the only way to prosper. You might be reading this now thinking that you're just a subpar player trying to improve yourself, but you might actually be a great player being held back by your partners. My intention isn't to have all of you dump your partners and transfer to Blackrock/Illidan/KJ to have your self-esteem and aspirations crushed by some elitist dick, but it's good to experiment with other comps and players to broaden your horizons. After all, variety is the spice of life. 


15. Understand the reasons why you fail, and conquer them. If you lose a game, never say "well I guess there's nothing we can do" or "there's nothing I can do against [class]." To say this is to accept defeat. Look back at the game and ask yourself "why did we lose?" From there, ask yourself, "what could I have done differently?" To know your other options is to know how to overcome adversity. 


16. Make a game plan. Look at comps before you play them and decide what you're going to do before you get there. What works on paper doesn't always work in practice, but having a go-to strategy is the best approach to tackling a difficult comp.

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