I’ve said it before, The Flag is Noob Bait!
But maybe I need to be more clear…
Eye of the Storm is NOT Warsong Gulch.
EotS is NOT a game that revolves around flags.
Yes the flag can be a circuit breaker when you can only get and maintain 2 nodes, but it’s the nodes that count, it’s bodies on node that count.
Yes you can win a game with only two bases and a flag, the issue is…
Who owns the flag?
I can’t count how many EotS I have been in where both sides inch up by flag caps, the last team to cap being the winner.
The bigger the investment, the bigger the crash
The problem is, the more vital the flag is, the more troops you have to commit from your nodes, which in turn means your nodes are now too lightly defended.
The people fighting in the middle are too focused on the fight, and would need to disengage, wait until they were out of combat and then respond to the frantic and usually too late incoming call.
People intending to fight in the middle also have a longer run after a Rez as well as face the danger of a seeing two Spirit Rezzers if the node they are rezzing at get taken – then they may be in the starting point, then control of mid may be lost for a flag cap or two.
With the mid-control balance lost you need to commit more troops, troops you didn’t have before, troops you don’t have now.
With a node lost, your mid controllers HAVE to abandon mid to take at least a 2nd node a well as protect the remaining node from the inevitable Zerg.
You are now on the back foot and recovery will be more difficult than controlling 3-4 nodes from the start.
The other thing to consider is that the flag is worth zero points by itself. The flag gains value based on the number of nodes you hold and this increase is not linear. A flag cap with 2 nodes is more than 2×1 node, a flag cap with 3 nodes is worth more than 3×1 node, etc.
Likewise the point gain from holding nodes is nonlinear. similar to AB and BfG, the game is over in the blink of an eye if you control all the bases.
So holding only two bases just extends the time on the clock, well that and diminishing the value of flags.
More time on the clock = more time to cock up, or at the very least give your opponents time to recovery, Zerg your nodes and steal victory.
Take it, Don’t cap it!
How do you encourage your flag-blind team mates to cap nodes rather than flags?
Ironically this is by grabbing the flag… the difference is you don’t cap it. If there is no flag respawning in mid, there is no reason to be there, so now you can encourage them to take another node, or two.
Encourage them, vocally…
No cap until we have 3 bases!
Meanwhile your flag-blind opponents will want the flag and they will come to get it, at your node, next to your graveyard, far from their graveyard.
With your opponents now tied up crossing the map to get to your node where the flag taunt them, your hit team can start taking their nodes, pushing them back to the start point, further from all bases.
They are kind of bottle necked as you can snipe them as they try to get past your nodes “on their side of the map”. A roving team can keep them away from crossing the flag bridge. The game is already over and they know it. A quick farm and you leave with max Conquest and Honor.
Better Yet, start right!
So imagine this flow from the Alliance perspective, just switch it about for Horde.
- Groups 1&2 go via DR to BeT, depositing 1 defender/caller at DR.
- Group 3 goes via MT to FRR, depositing 1 defender/caller at MT.
Yes, group 3 are probably sacrificial, but if the Horde leave to protect BeT (or are flag-blind) it could be an easy cap. Whatever the case you are breaking their momentum to MT.
Best case you get all 4 bases, or at least neutralise them, forcing them to rez on their big starting rock.
Now I know what you are thinking, the enemy will just run straight through.. but usually they don’t, they run back to their base to cap, but hopefully, by the time they get there the base is gone, all the bases are gone, and the flag-blind in the middle don’t know which way to run, but they run, in ones and twos, ultimately to their death.
Even if they do run through to your bases, they have to neutralise you and turn the node, which may take them a while, probably long enough for you to come back and engage them.
Remember you don’t have to kill them to capture the node, you just need more bodies there. if they have 1, you need 2, if they have 5, you need 6… even 5 will stop the base turning.
THAT IS WHY YOU MUST FIGHT ON THE NODE, not the road in front of it, not on the bridges, not in midfield.
FIGHT ON THE NODES!
(I have seen too many occasions where we outnumbered our opponents, but the opponents fought ON the node, so it remained in their hands).
Meanwhile group 1&2 take BeT, wait until it turns (which will be quick with that many bodies) and push to clean up FRR if required or support the other nodes.
Roving the Bottleneck
Group 1, 2 & 3 now position themselves Horde side of the flag bridge. They can rove to protect BeT and FRR and block the Horde from the flag.
You must keep at least 1 on each node, so that the enemy always has to send at least 2 people to win the node!
So long as MT and DR are early with calls and your roving band is quick to respond you should have and keep 4 bases & control the flag.
A couple of flag caps later and the game is yours.
Just because the fights at the nodes are hard, doesn’t mean they aren’t worthwhile. It’s just a matter of body count – living vs. dead, ON the node, to control a node.
Remember, if you have a nasty Elemental Shaman or Boomkin, they can reduce the enemy load on a node by blowing them off… into the void is nice, but off the node will do to begin with.
Once it’s neutralized your job gets easier, once it’s owned you respawn your own reinforcements.
Fall back position
Yes, yes… it can all unravel and next thing you know you only have two bases… seems like a better fall back position than starting position.
All being will you have knocked up a handy lead too, a bit more breathing space in case they get a few flag caps in a row.
That’s OK, because you know what, Plan B isn’t just about the Flag. It’s about continuing the assault on at least one of their bases. Drag the flag-blind opponents away from the flag to defend, drag them all over the place. You may not keep a node, but if you can at least temporarily neutralize it, they lose a source of consistent points, they have to change plans, they are on the back foot and scrambling to turn the defeat about.
Diversify your options
It’s about having options and starting with 2 bases limits those options. If you can start with a position of strength, depriving them of points and close graveyards early, you are in a stronger position than hoping to survive what is essentially a turtle… and turtles rarely work, offense is your best defense.
Go kill your opponents, just do it on their nodes so that you can capture them – two birds, one stone… HK’s and a winning game.
Gnomer and Out!
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.