I have genuinely been having a great time in World of Warcraft these days, with the new Battleground Brawl called Comp Stomp.
It takes place in Arathi Basin, and instead of Horde, we now fight Artificial Intelligence opponents.
It has been quite fascinating to participate in since Wednesday, especially since the AI opponents seem to be learning.
It´s a lot harder than it was just a few days ago;
They now CrowdControl extremely well and their Silence is spot on and chained, They never leave a node undefended.
You cannot just lure them away and kite them around.
Often their Druid and Rogue pair up and stealth around to cap. The same team avoids getting camped, so you cannot just farm them at their graveyard.
They never place themselves to be easily tossed out from the hills of Lumber Mill either.
Their damage input has increased, and as soon as they spot a Healer, they all go for her (Trust me..!)
That being said, it´s not all that difficult, and I won every battle, which made me keep going. Some were close though, with a score around 1400 vs 1500, and some were not, with a score around 800 vs 1500.
It is possible to predict some of their behaviour, but not all.
Some laughs during the Brawl included witnessing the AI opponents acting exactly like players; if they would arrive to a contested point, where the Alliance outnumbered them, they would simply turn around and flee the scene!
I´m very curious, where this might lead us in the future.
If there is a faction imbalance, perhaps AI opponents comes to the rescue?
I also wonder, how the Horde has experienced the Brawl this week? Are the AI opponents harder to beat than real Alliance players, given the note at the announcements of these at BlizzCon? 😉 (You´re Welcome, Alliance)
Will we see them in more Battlegrounds soon, such as Alterac Valley?
Unlike Warfronts, which feels a bit “flat” to me, this kind of AI in Arathi Basin seem way more intelligent.
Do not get me wrong, I do like the set up of Warfronts, especially Darkshore; it´s easy for me to engage myself in. And especially as a time-poor player, the fact that it´s a guaranteed win makes me participate, since I generally have stopped playing content, where I can risk walking away half an hour later with nothing.
I even had a moment in Arathi Highlands, where an enormous wave of NPCs and myself took down a boss all on our own, it was epic!
So these AI opponents are very welcoming for me, in the state they are in right now. One can argue, it´s not real PvP, and that is true, it´s not.
But because we know we can win, and we do, this has been an opportunity for me to…
…see Arathi Basin again in its new upgraded version. It looks beautiful.
…gain reputation with The League of Arathor, all the way to Exalted (Working on 100 reputations)
…gather a good amount of Marks of Honor for transmogrification gear
…obtain some of those Captured Insignias as well as Fallen Adventurer´s Journals to hand in at the Darkmoon Faire for Tickets for all the Mounts, Pets and Toys I want
…participate in organised gameplay with friends that I rarely have an opportunity to group with, because I am so time poor (a win can take as little as 10 minutes)
…get items that I can disenchant so I can level my Enchanting and begin on the quest soon
…witness the Alliance winning, for once. Sure, it might be against “easy bots”, as some might argue, but perhaps it sparks a little motivation and belief, that through organising, Alliance can once again win more often in the “real” kind of PvP
…loot fish from the box after each victory, to help me level Cooking
…earn a little extra cash, around 200 gold pr. win
Look at that list!
If there is one thing I like, it´s double bonus results, just like doing Incursion and Emmisary at the same time. Time efficiency is a joy.
A part of me worries, though, that AI opponents might end up doing more harm than good, depending on where they will be used, and how much Blizzard intends to use them.
Perhaps Artificial Intelligence will be “The New Big Thing” of the next Expansion?
I can see many things, it would be excellent for. Imagine a better escort quest, where the NPC are way more ‘clever’ than today.
Or Scenarios, where Tyrande, Malfurion and Nathanos would fight in a more “real Player vs Player” kind of way, instead of the ‘a-little-bit-awkward manner’, that we are used to?
Or how about the “average mob you have to kill for a Quest Objective” suddenly being able to predict your every move, Silence and Crowd Control you, forcing you to stay sharp throughout the questing experience?
Or new versions of the Mage Tower Challenge?
Time will tell.
What do you think, Artificial Intelligence Opponents in World of Warcraft – good or bad?
Happy day everyone 🙂