The idea of welfare epix has been tossed around for a while. Basically, it’s the idea of a character expending little effort to get shiny new purple gear.
The idea first came to be (correct me if I’m wrong) when the hardcore Arena players, namely those who devoted hours every week with very high ratings, saw people who’s arena teams had all-time high scores of 1400 walking around with the same gear they had.
So, natch, they cried fowl. 2 really crappy players could get together, lose 10 times a week, and accrue arena points, then turn them in to get FANTASTIC gear for… well, nothing. Hell, I got the S2 gloves from a 1300 rated team.
Hence the term “Welfare”.
Hence also the changes in arena gear in 2.3.
In 2.3, you (YOU) [you] have your own personal arena rating based on the matches you play in.
You’re on a 2v2 with 3 people, let’s say Hunter, Mage, Paladin. The Hunter and Paladin tend to lose every match, but the Mage and Paladin tend to win every match.
So, the arena team itself will have a passable score, maybe in the 1400-1600 range. Of that, the hunter will have a much lower rating (think 1200-) because he loses a lot. The mage will have a much higher rating (think 1800+) because he wins a lot.
Ok, most of that was pulled out of my ass, but you get the principle.
So, by introducing personal ratings, and making it so some gear requires you to have a certain rating, the S3 gear is much more prestigious than previous seasons.
So the top Arena players will get the respect that they deserve, and the scrubs they wipe the floor with will get… let’s have a look at what we scrubs get, shall we?
With the ontroduction of Season 3, the other season gear gets a wee bit cheaper. S2 gets cheaper point costs, and S1 (brace yourselves) goes onto the Honor point system.
My reaction is as follows:
So… Blizzard decides to take away Welfare Epix by forcing you to have a personal ranking to wear the S3 items, but then goes around and hands older Epix straight to the honor system?
Anyone with any intelligence is spending all day inside AV, maxing out their honor. AV is, right now, a Zerg game, with tons of honor to be had, very very quickly.
We’re talking hundreds of honor per hour, easily. My personal best rate was 3.4k honor in a single hour.
So, with a good solid week of playing AV (or a single honor weekend), I could pretty much get any and all the S1 arena gear.
I think the meaning of “Welfare Epix” just got a whole lot more… welfare…like…ish?
So, do I farm honor until my eyes fall out, and pick up S1 arena gear, causing me to be the laughing stock of PvP’ers everywhere, or do I turn up my nose and purposefully gimp myself with a Steamvaults quest reward for a hat?
Let’s do some quick comparisons, shall we? Let’s see the numbers!
Hydromancer Headwrap –> Gladiator
+4 Spell Damage
(No change in sockets, although the Glad comes with a Red one)
Imbued Netherweave (lol) –> Gladiator
+12 Spell Damage
Frozen Shadoweave –> Gladiator
-40 Spell Damage
(And an additional socket, and a red socket =D)
Frozen Shadoweave –> Gladiator
-18 Spell damage
So, replacing my two cruddy blues will net me 16 more spell damage, 48 stamina, 60 Resilience, and a loss of 13 Intellect. Well, this is a no-brainer. Two pieces of Welfare S1 coming right up.
The case of the Frozen Shadoweave stuff is definitely a little trickier. I’d lose 58 spell damage and 4 Intellect, but gain 42 stamina and 45 resilience.
So, we have to look at gems to make up our minds. To put it bluntly, I get more gems out of the Gladiator stuff. I get an extra red socket, which could lessen the damage I lose, and toss even more resilience gems into those yellow sockets. AND I get a nice set bonus of 35 resilience.
By replacing all of my gear with S1 Welfare stuff, I could seriously amp up my hitpoint pool, and easily add 140 Resilience!! And that’s not including gems!
And please note that this does not take Crit rating into the equation AT ALL. I don’t need it, but there it is. Replace those four pieces, and I’m looking at 84 crit rating. Thats… pretty nice.
I’ll run this past a few people I know, but it’s looking like I’ll be snagging me some welfare epix. At least two, anyways.
See ya in AV. I’ll be the one killing Mancuso, Randoplh, and that dwarf Stout guy at the same time.