The time has come for me to explain the “success” of my arena teams.
Basically, the reason why they are so low is due to an unrealistic view of 70 PvP by my dear friend, Voxmortis. To put it quite plainly, Vox is an arcane mage. He has loved his arcane spec since he picked up this game, he is seriously in love with the sheer Pew Pew he gets from Arcane Missiles with only +500 spell damage (he has more than that now, obviously).
As both of us were getting levels, making our way to level 70, we each had different views about how the arenas would play out.
Vox figured he could play them just like he does in Battlegrounds; quite simply, drop the enemy before you’re own survivability becomes an issue. I, on the other hand, recognized the danger of this philosophy of very small-scale PvP. I used to be fire spec when I hit Outland.
I quicky respecced to heavy frost at 62 on the (correct) assumption that frost would be the only viable spec in the arena. The last time I was frost was at 44, and so I figured (again correctly) that I would need the practice to be any good.
So I respecced early.
Vox did not.
So, once both of us were 70, we took a Paladin buddy of ours (Flirt) and hit the 3v3’s.
I won’t go into all the details, but basically, we got our asses kicked. Repeatedly. So, now, here we sit at the entertainingly low rating of 1320.
2v2 wise, the best record I’ve ever had running with Vox was 5-5 win-loss ratio.
By comparison, me and the Paladin have a 70% win ratio. We only lost when it was really late at night, and we were inevitably paired with ridicuously over-geared people relative to ourselves.
Our first loss was at the hand of a warlock in full Season2 gear. The dude had 14k hitpoints, over 450 resilience, and enough + damage to three shot the paladin.
Thankfully, Vox has recognized the error of his ways, pertaining to the arena, and has begun the horribly expensive and lengthy process of respeccing frost. He also plans on respeccing his tailoring (currently Spellfire) to match his new spec.
This will cost him money, time, and a lot of effort to get the mats together, simply to succeed in a competitive arena.
Needless to say, this is very upsetting for Vox, knowing his spec is worse than worthless in arenas. Playing the way he wants to is detrimental to the other members of the team.
And with 2.3, and the introduction of a personal rating system, it pains me to say that I will never play in an arena with Vox unless he is specced frost. It’s like trying to run a heroic instance, and getting a shaman to tank for you. You’re only setting yourself up for failure and disappointment.
Is it fair that Vox’s favorite spec is ruinous in the arena? Is it fair that, for him to play the way he wants to, he is forcing his arena teams to be failing ones?
It’s all simple math. To win at competitive arenas, you need to be able to take the hits. You need to be able to essentially “outlast” the other team. And this is a far larger challenge for the mage class than any other in the game. So much so, that you either spec frost or you fail.
I consider this to be a broken mechanic of the game. While there are those who say that you can spec however you want to do whatever you want, this isn’t true. It just isn’t.
Fire and arcane are PvE specs, with fire being slightly the better. Arcane is a little better than fire at PvP, simply because of the far greater burst potential.
Frost is the PvP spec, being a poor choice for PvE (barring solo’ing, where again it is the best). Frost beats out fire/arcane viability in any type of PvP, despite the huge nerfs frost has taken these last few months.
If you spec Fire and try to PvP, you will be a failure.
If you spec Frost and try to Raid, you will be a failure.
Please note that all the mage specs are equally viable in 5-mans. Fire/arcane provides some mad dps, while frost brings an incredible amount of control to these smaller instances.