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alterac valley strategies

More than most battlegrounds, AV requires that you start with a firm plan. One popular plan is called the "blitz" or "zerg".

Blitz (sometimes called Zerg)

If you kill the enemy's boss, you win the game. The blitz tries to do this in one, quick stroke as everyone on your team rides directly to the enemy's camp and attacks the boss.

wsg pug on pug

The bosses are powerful, and they have powerful guards, so they need to be tanked, and the tanks need to be healed. Thus, the blitz plan attempts to turn the battleground into a PvE dungeon raid.

The timing allows both sides to zerg simultaneously. The Alliance comes up the hill as the Horde passes IBGY. Alliance swings around Balinda and past IBT as the Horde passes IWB and heads down the hill. If the two groups stick together, they never meet, and both reach the enemy's encampment at the same time.

The blitz plan requires special tactics.

Countering the Blitz

If your team spreads out across the map while the other team rides together towards your boss, they will likely slice right through your rear area troops and win the game. So, if you are not planning to blitz, you must be sure to defend against it.

pro versus pug

The counter-blitz has three stages and takes advantage of the important fact that you cannot rez at a graveyard until you control it. This means that players who die while fighting the enemy boss have a good chance of rezzing all the way back in their starting area.

Stage I: send a small force (five to ten are enough) directly to guard your boss. The boss and his adds are powerful fighters and any enemy who come into the room will gain aggro ... so a part of your force should be able to hold off the whole of theirs.

Send the remainder of your force to cap the mid-field grave yards (SFGY, IBGY, SHGY) and both of the enemy's midfield bunkers/towers (TP/IBT, SHB/IWB). The grave yards need only light defense, but the bunkers/towers should be held until they burn.

Stage II: As you kill the enemy at your boss, they will rez back in their staging area. This will put pressure on your forward troops who will need to fall back. The key is to hold the two midfield towers/bunkers until they burn. Also try to kill the midfield NPC (Galvangar, Balinda).

Note that you are not trying to kill the enemy boss with this approach. You are trying to win the game on points.

Stage III: Kill any enemy players remaining in your camp. Then move forward to establish a balance somewhere in the middle of the field. At this point you will have scored points with the NPC kill and the two towers/bunkers while the enemy will have burned no towers/bunkers. Assuming an even number of kills for the remainder of the game you should eventually exhaust the enemy's reinforcements.

There are other approaches, for example, you can simply take your entire force into the enemy's path and meet them head on, but this one takes advantage of their absence to grab a quick lead that they will find difficult to make up.

The Small Counter-Blitz

A riskier but nonetheless attractive strategy is to run a blitz while sending a defensive team to guard your boss. The defensive team should include warlocks, death knights and others who can pull enemies who get too close into the boss's threat zone ... plus a healer to keep the team alive. At worst this will hold the enemy up and give you more time to accomplish your blitz, at best it may stall the enemy blitz entirely.

wsg pug on pug

The danger is that in splitting your force you may not have enough people to finish off the enemy's boss. The enemy may set a up a defense, too, and this can take a toll.

In any case be sure to cap the two grave yards nearest the enemy base. Enemies will be dying and if your blitz breaks down, you don't want them to be rezzing anywhere nearby.

The Counter-Counter

The key to dealing with a counter-blitz is to recognize that it is happening. Immediately cap and defend your mid-field gy so that you don't get trapped in your end, and get your forces moving out to reinforce the defenders in the enemy mid-field towers/bunkers.

wsg pug on pug

If both sides decide to counter-attack the blitz, they end up in a fairly undesireable postion. Each has a "wasted" force sitting in the home base, while the forward troops have given up a grave yard to occupy towers/bunkers that they probably will not be able to hold.

The Onion Plan

This is the "standard" plan that seems to be what the game designers envisioned ... modified to deal with the potential blitz.

Send most of your troops to your midfield gy. If they meet an enemy blitz there, fine ... they will defend. If not, then also fine ... they will leave a small defensive force and cross to the enemy's bunkers/towers. Send a second force towards the enemy NPC. Again, if they get a kill, then good ... if not then nothing is lost.

This stops the blitz (because any of your troops killed in that first fight will rez close behind and come right back up), and it produces a balanced fight if there is no blitz.

The key is to maintain control of your mid-field grave yard. If the Allies lose SHGY they risk being bottled up in their end, and the same is true of the Horde with IBGY. The choke point near IWB is probably worse for the Allies than the fairly open space around TP, but both are problematical.