GvG build: Balanced Casual, observations from a pro about low level GvG

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GvG build: Balanced Casual, observations from a pro about low level GvG

Post  jeunfb on Sat Apr 12, 2008 11:38 pm

Daek, a long-time GvG-only monk with a bunch of different guilds (as high as top 20 at times, as low as top thousands at times) guest-lectured to a guild much like our own the other week, and it was put up as a Podcast mp3 on their guild site. Much like our own guild, they're a large guild with plenty of members with very different amounts of experience. Much like our own guild, they were trying to get more into GvG, and sucking new members in (many of who were nervous about the same things we are... letting down our teammates, etc). It was really pretty interesting and eye-opening to me (as someone who is just getting past the "beginner" level... but not by much.)

First, feel free to ignore this entire post and just follow the link. But for those who don't have 30 minutes to listen to a podcast... here's my version of what he had to say.

The biggest issue with getting new players and guilds into GvG is trying to force them into a specific build. His basic thesis was that people are only good at, and will only get better at, characters they like to play.

For instance, he gave an example of a top 10 guild that runs a CrippShot Ranger. It's become a more and more common build for use in GvG, but, according to him, isn't really that useful of a character in the hands of most guilds, especially at the flagstand. It just happens that this specific build has a player who is fantastically good at interrupts and playing a ranger, so they altered their build to allow such a ranger to work. However, if someone copied their build via GWTV, they'd likely be getting a sub-optimal build for their guild, since they didn't have the services of such a skilled ranger.

In another example, he gave an case of a A/Mo dancing dagger build that is really pretty weak, and the guild that runs it gets a bit of ragging for doing so. But, because they like the build, they know the build well, and they have gotten really good at it, it remains a viable build for their guild, and they've been in the top 50 for quite a while with it.

His biggest point was that in setting up (balanced) builds for a guild, considering the players playing it was much more important than the specific profession. Certain roles have to be filled -- melee frontliners, a midline incorporating both offense/shutdown and defense, and backline heal/prot -- but whether this is a Defensive Anthem Para or a BSurge Ellie should be a result of who is playing and what they are comfortable with.


As to my part, I'm really excited about trying to work some role-based organization into Casual Wed. GvG (if I can ever make it home in time...) Lev's build is a great example of this -- a balanced build that can be adapted to the players available. Kate's collection of builds for roles is a great way to find something that works for you. Obviously this asks a lot of the organizers and leaders of Casual Balanced GvG, as they have to organize a complete team and can't just say "you take #3", but I think it's an important part of working in both new and learning players.

This aspect was one of the most impressive things I found about Bunnz's leading early in the year. His version of getting a balanced build was to say "hey Ethan, go grab your Mel Dervish. Bring what you've got currently on your bar (with maybe one change) because it's what you're most comfortable with and will be most effective with." After doing this a night or two, I got to the point I could use my skills without thinking, which left much more room for thinking about the role I was supposed to be playing -- monk harassment.

At any rate, I highly recommend listening in to the recording if you have the time. It's partially based off of Daek's Beginner's Guide to GvG over on gurus, but it's more aimed at a beginning/inexperienced guild, with stuff for beginning players, beginning leaders, and beginning game/build/guild organizers.

This isn't to say that using builds, trying new things, and testing out random GWTV options isn't useful. Obviously, if you haven't tried it, you don't know if you'll be good at it and enjoy it or not. But doing well in GvG is (according to Daek) best correlated with selecting the best build for the current players, not the most optimal build or some meta-hip build with 64 required skills. http://www.theamazonbasin.com/gw/forums/index.php?showtopic=8982

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