If you haven’t already, check out Part 1 of our Elder Scrolls Online vs World of Warcraft Blog series here – Part 1 is all about the differences between the user interface and the overall graphics used between the 2 games.
Well, here we are with my 3rd installment of the World of Warcraft vs Elder Scrolls Online blog series - who knew there would be so much to write about these two games and their similarities / differences? In this blog post, were talking about PvP. Now, originally I was going to combine PvP and Questing together, because lets face it, these 2 things are the 2 most done activities which every player will take part in (and take up most of our time within these virtual worlds). However, once I started writing and putting my views down about PvP, I realized that Questing will have to have its own post, as there's a lot to say about PvP as it is. Here goes...
I absolutely loved PvP in World of Warcraft when it was first released up to about the first 6 months, there were no Battlegrounds at all, no easy option to join a PvP match and get teleported to the location, no it wasn't that easy. In the younger days of the game, PvP was pretty much open world style, where members either on the Alliance or Horde side would rally together an army of 40-60 players and all meet at a location. Then travel together to an opposing factions area or city and attack them, sometimes lasting up to hours of none stop war.
I've mainly played the Alliance side, so we always used to go to the Crossroads and attack there. As soon as the Horde were alerted, they would send their own force of players to come and defend us off - it was pretty sweet times in PvP. Even if there was only a small group of you it was still possible to reak some havoc. These were the proper times of PvP and my most enjoyable memory in WoW. Then I think everyone got lazy and so Battlegrounds were born. That killed off open world PvP pretty much completely, the rest was killed off by the developers adding in never ending spawning Elite guards at every location that would make it overly hard to even try and PvP like this anymore, especially in small groups or as stealth characters.
Ok, so there's quite a few different PvP game types in WoW, Alterac Valley being my favorite because it's more like the old style open world PvP. And then you've got the arena... But that's pointless even trying to enter unless you've got major end game gear already. But either way, unless your a Paladin or a Death Knight, you've got no real chance of winning a one on one encounter anyway. I used to love PvP in WoW, it was my favorite thing to do. Heck I even leveled a new Rogue up to max level just for PvP.
But when your so under powered your Stealth attacks hardly touch your opponent, what's the point anymore? Can you tell I lost the faith in WoW due to the PvP? As I mentioned before in the Combat section of this series, attacking in WoW is more of a 'work out the best way to press buttons to minimize cool downs and rotation' style. So if you haven't got this worked out then your going to have a hard time.
PvP in Elder Scrolls Online is a whole new experience compared to WoW's style. Yet in both games PvP is accessible at Level 10 or higher. In ESO the whole area of Cyrodill is a PvP area, a vast space filled with land, forts, villages, resource buildings and most important thing to note... The Imperial City. The Imperial City is at the center of the province, and is the main goal for any PvP'er. As a part of your Faction, your main PvP goal is to work together to conquer the neighboring villages and resources such as lumber mills and mines, which will then let your side build epic war machines in which you can use to war against the current King of the Imperial City.
That's right, your actually PvP'ing for your factions right to take over and own the Imperial City, as well as one of your factions member being crowned King or Queen of Cyrodill. Not all PvP in ESO is on the front lines, there are multiple jobs which any player can take up. From capturing the resource areas around the land, reinforcing keeps, setting up siege weapons, upgrading guards and more. So if your a lower level and want to keep out of the firing line, there's still a lot of things for you to do to help in the war of Tamriel. 3 Factions - now this is where PvP gets interesting.
Will it be a free for all with each faction against each other, or will 2 factions work together in an attempt for one of them to be able to be crowned King? Anything could happen within the war, alliances and betrayal between the factions. This also leaves the PvP conquest in a situation that could last weeks on end, not just a 20 minute match as seen in WoW. We are actually fighting for something and as a faction everyone needs to play their part, either on the front lines, defense, resource collecting, or with siege weaponry in order for your side to take the advantage.
The choice really comes down to Open World PvP vs Instanced PvP. Do you prefer having quick 20 minute matches which you either win or loose and get a little prize for winning each time? Or do you prefer an open war stlye PvP method in which there's multiple tasks to do and taking over the Imperial City is actually an effort to achieve in itself, yet comes well rewarded? Then compare the Combat systems between the 2 MMORPG's - WoW with it's rotation based spell casting and ESO with it's real time combat method? I know which one I would prefer, but what about you?