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The Guide to Advanced PVP Tactics

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > PvP
The Guide to Advanced PVP Tactics

Tim-ONeil's Avatar


Tim-ONeil
07.17.2014 , 02:11 PM | #1
Prologue.

Want to be an elite player? Of course you do.

PVP is many things to many people. There's a lot of pride and ego involved and a ton of BS. That's where this guide comes in, it slices through it all and shows you the things that good players do consciously or unconsciously to be winners nearly every match.

This guide starts off broad and gets into more specific info toward the end. I'm going to assume you know how to play somewhat and don't need the beginners guide if you are reading this. I'm not going to cover class vs class play only specific important tips and overall strategy.

Everyone assumes big numbers and medals mean good players, right? Not entirely. PVP is team objective based and the numbers at the end only tell part of the tale of the game. Winning and losing is only objective based (except for the arenas) so your team can be on the top of the chart at the end and still lose. It happens often believe it or not. People chase medals and lose the match because of it.

In an objective based game it's not about kills (though that can help) it's about playing the correct strategy and reacting as a team, not an elite dueling force of 8 individuals.


General PVP Tips for all classes.

Increase Your Awareness

Awareness is EVERYTHING in PVP. As an elite player you know who is guarding the other side on voidstar solo and you are watching their health on your team list while you engage the enemy. Why? Because if they are stealth attacked they might not call for help in time. As soon as you see their health dropping it's time to decide where you are needed and move accordingly.

Also as an elite player you are going to macro manage the battlefield and move where you are needed without being told. Did you just cap snow in Alderraan and leave only one D mid? Well you aren't sticking around to get the killing blow on the last standing opponent or two you are already moving to your other defense point because the enemy is on their way there.

You are also watching your map at all times. This mean you are seeing how your team is deployed and calling out when they are all on a single side of voidstar. Nothing surprises you because of your awareness.

This is where the disconnect between stats and good play is apparent. Sticking around to get the killing blow or continuing to DPS while you know your team is vulnerable will make you look better stats wise to a player that doesn't know better. Moving when needed will gain you the respect of the good players and help your team win.
That's much more important.


Camera Zoom Levels And PVP

First you have to be able to see as much as possible to have decent PVP awareness. Go into your settings and increase the maximum zoom level to 100%. Now when you PVP you need to be zoomed out as far as possible this allows you to see everything going on and you should be constantly rotating the camera to see everything. There's no excuse for letting someone cap the node behind you because you couldn't see it.

Zoom out your mini map to its max setting and make it slightly bigger on your screen. This is important because it is your quick overview of the battle. Do not overlook it.


Know Your Class And Your Opponent

In order to be able to multitask the actual fighting mechanics of the game and the big picture you need to be able to handle the fighting itself easily. It seems simple but you need to understand all of your abilities and how they work in PVP. That's huge and required to be competent.

To be elite you need to know not only your own abilities but that of all the classes you face. This allows you to anticipate their moves and counter them. Observation is good for this or actually playing the class yourself will give you a greater understanding of the capabilities.

Knowing your own weakness is important to gauge if you should be attacking someone solo or waiting for assistance.


Find, Mark, Harass The Healer

I believe one of the surest ways to know you are playing a good team is when your own healer complains in chat they are getting destroyed. Identify and mark the healers immediately after starting the warzone. I prefer using the star and target symbols as they are very distinct and will help even the most braindead players get the message.
The healer is always a priority target. This means that as soon as they respawn they have to be the first one to die again. If they are being guarded use stuns and knockbacks to separate them from the guard. This is important because as the healer takes damage their role shifts from group support to survival. Either way they aren't healing and it's allowing your group to dictate the fight.


Interrupts And Stuns Are Everything In PVP

In the warzone section I'll detail when to use them for maximum effect in each WZ but they are essential to excellent PVP play. Often times we hear people complain there are too many stuns in the game and it means the opposing team is using them correctly.

Specifically any casting class, healers, mando/mercs, sorcs/sages, can and should be interrupted as often as possible. When attacking a healer interrupting their heals is essential. You can easily shut down a bad player with interrupts and stun because they will freeze and not move to their next ability as they can't recognize the interrupt.
Don't waste your stuns! Learn how to use them offensively and defensively but avoid using them wastefully. I'll explain more in the huttball section.


The Role Of Taunt

It can't be stressed enough that taunts are under utilized in PVP. They are highly effective and every class that has a taunt should be using it liberally even if they are DPS spec'd. Taunts are free enemy team damage reduction.

Area taunts and individual taunts need to be applied as soon as they are up on your ability bars especially if you are DPS as it gives you even more group utilitiy. Next time you are in a match look the taunt stats of all of the Juggs/Guardians , Shadows/Assassins, or Vanguards/Powertechs. Even high DPS players should have a decent amount of protection or they are not playing their class to its full potential and leaving the healers with a larger than necessary burden.


Communication

It's more than calling for help. Even a general direction is not enough. You must call both the number of players and the direction. Why? Because over committing to a spot on the map loses games. If the other team sends 2 to east and 5 people come to reinforce you just lost west. Gauge your response to the situation. As an elite player that mean you have to be aware and pull back if too many have responded. If number of enemies has increased you have to communicate this as well. On some maps you can directly see this from other sides, on others you have to rely on communication.

Be a leader and tell your team where to be. After you marked the healer say something. Assume the people you play with are not as aware as you. Teams made up of 6 or more exceptional players actually have less communication believe it or not because everyone understands where to be, who to attack, and just does it automatically. Once you've become a good player you have to consciously try to suck in a WZ.


Specific Warzone Strategies

As stated before there are little things that every good team does to win in each scenario. They are usually the difference between winning and losing but you'll never find them on the stat screen at the end of the match. A bad player doesn't know any better anyway.


Voidstar Specific Strategy.

Basic.

My premades have always used the left/right method in here using the map as a constant. Why not east west? I've found some people have trouble with cardinal directions in an indoor setting in game. Sounds crazy but Left/Right works as long as you use the map as your point of reference. Everyone should always be watching the map anyway so they know where their teammates are.


Attackers.

The beginning minute of the game sets the tempo for the rest of the match and is usually the point where a warzone will start to fall apart if progress is not made. Therefore a strong start is essential.
This is an example of a bad strategy and you see it often in a game of voidstar. Someone says "All left/right and stealth to the opposite side". This will ONLY work against a completely brain dead team, meaning most of the time you've set yourself up to lose. Always assume your opponent is decent and use the overload strategy.

This involves sending everyone to a single side to bring the maximum team DPS possible. This means it's important to zerg as fast as you can before they have a chance to adjust. It has two effects; starting off they have to defend both sides and therefore are not in a position to defend as well and killing them quickly by focusing your DPS together will sap their moral. PVP is as much mental as anything and a distracted or disheartened opponent will make mistakes.

As soon as they are down to two or less defenders someone on the team has to start capping immediately. If the defender doesn't notice this it's an easy cap if they start moving towards them the group has to apply stun (cc means crowd control and is alternate word for stun; I use both).

If you are the one capping you should be standing about 5m away from the center point of the door toward the center of the warzone area. The Doors look like this: < > right inside the diagonal door support you should be able to cap. Why here instead of the middle or other side? Well because anyone dropping down will have to run farther around the corner to be able to LOS to stop you. Usually a second or fraction of a second is the difference between a cap and fail.

If multiple people are capping do not stand close to each other. A single AOE stops the cap. Stand on opposite sides of the capable area so that there's a delay between interrupts. This extra second may be the difference between a win and a loss.

Healers DO NOT HEAL the person on the door capping if the other team is still alive. This is a giant hey look over here sign to someone that might otherwise be engaged in a 1v1 battle and not paying attention. There's nothing worse than making your capper glowing with sound and huge numbers over their head when you are trying to be somewhat stealthy.

If you are not capping you need to immediately run to the point where they will drop down and get ready to area stun, slow, or knockback. Standing uselessly next to person capping or trying to cap yourself does nothing for the team.

After blowing open the first door the strategy changes from killing your opponent to stunning/slowing them. When you kill them now you have to kill them again as they spawn in front of you slowing your overall time to the datacore. Rushing and stunning them allows your team to plant in a quick manner. This is especially true after the second door. There is a large area here and using snares and roots with stuns will allow your forward attackers to get into the room and get the forcefields and doors before the defenders can set up a defense.

If you die after a door explode do not rez until one of your players has moved into the next room. Once they enter that room the spawn point changes to the more forward location. Waiting 10 seconds to rez saves you 30 seconds of running and allows you to contribute where you need to be.

Remember after the first door the strategy is the same. Out DPS them and you'll get through quickly if you run into resistance and the stun/slow doesn't work.

The biggest takeaways should be the capping strategies above. Always be trying to cap when you have them outnumbered. If they ignore you, you win. If they have to focus you then your team will quickly eliminate them and you win. Controlling the fight is everything.


Defenders:

"Keep 2 on the doors at all times" is a fail strategy. Your group needs to move as needed and adapt to the situation. That means you are directly responsible for making sure that the team is deployed in the right place and you are constantly watching your map. You know who is solo on east and are keeping an eye on their health in case they fail to call for help. You are always counting the number of players on your side both enemies and teammates. If you have more teammates than enemies the other side of the map is outnumbered. It's simple but means you have to be able to manage this while engaging the enemy.

After a door has been lost get back as fast as possible to the next obstacle (bridge or door) fighting needless fights only hurts your team. Slow/stun the attackers but killing is much less important. If you kill an attacker in the first room they are going to spawn in front of you as soon as someone crosses into the room and now you are out of position and way behind. As a defender your life is too important because of the timer gates to get sucked into fighting. Get to the doors as soon as possible after they get the bridge/shields.

Now this is where the medals and objectives differ from your actual goal. Killing is not your mission here. You only need to stay alive - by any means possible to stop the cap. Using your escapes, stuns, staying out of combat, etc is essential as your dead teammates drop down around every 30 seconds or so. Being a hero and running into a group of 5 enemies just to immediately get killed is not what an elite player does.

Also this means hovering around the midpoint for doors 2 and 3. There are no defender points given here and not being in useless combat means your stats won't be great but you can immediately move to stop a cap and help your team win while being the insurance policy if someone is capping unnoticed.


Bonus tip:

If you are a sage/sorc or guardian/jugg then there is a special role you can play before the bridge is extended after the first door. There is an unshielded area in the center that is able to be leaped or have a player pulled across.

As a guardian/jugg you want to stand on the very edge so that if an enemy guardian or jugg jumps at you they will fall off. You are looking for an enemy player to get too close so you can jump across (works for offense or defense) or calling for a teammate to move to the center so you can jump to them (for defense). Also for defense a sorc can run there and pull a teammate over to continue to stop the bridge cap.

This is completely legal and takes a team that is able to communicate and pull it off. Done correctly with it will drive the other team insane. There's nothing better than jumping across on offense, turning around throwing the player you jumped to into the gap and then planting before the bridge is down. Again it's completely legal.



Alderaan Civil War Specific Strategy

Basic:

In this WZ we use the grass/mid/snow designations. Why? Because in this case the map changes based on which side your ship is parked to start the game. Grass/Snow/Mid avoids confusion. On this map more so than any other the number of incoming players is key to avoid over committing and losing a point.

The starting strategy depends on your teams composition and skill level. As such I won't go into that here.
What is important is WHERE you fight when attempting to control or defend a point. For mid the key is to set your defensive wall on their side of the turret. This means they have to move through you to capture the point. Bad teams set up the wall on their own side and never actually get to the turret or if they had it they are allowing free access to it from the other team. Always fight on their side while watching for stealth caps. Simply moving to their side as ranged will bring their melee and everyone else with you. It's important.

When capping make sure that you are using LOS to your advantage. Always face away from their spawn point. Only one person needs to cap, everyone else should be stunning any enemies that are still alive or moving to intercept them.

If you are defending a side point there is a spot on the stairs where you can place your back against the stair wall and the zoom out your camera to see the turret, and where they would be coming from to attack. Use this to avoid allowing stealth to open up with stuns and backstabs. This will keep you alive significantly longer and allow help to get to you if you are attacked when defending solo.

Where the advanced strategy comes into play is regarding trying to cap if you have only one point. First you need your strongest duelist to defend your existing point because a smart team might send a player to try to cap it after they count the numbers of attackers. Break the group into 4 and 3. Send the group with 4 members to a point while the 3 stay back ready to move. As soon as the enemy sends reinforcements to the point being attacked the group of 3 goes to the under defended one. If you are good enough as a team you'll pull it off.


More to come...
Rhy Phin
Kl Nemonica
The Ren Legacy Server: Ebon Hawk US/EAST

K_osss's Avatar


K_osss
07.17.2014 , 02:32 PM | #2
Looking forward to reading the rest. I appreciate a well written constructive PvP piece!

PloGreen's Avatar


PloGreen
07.17.2014 , 04:23 PM | #3
I will bump this for you since you took the time to help new players improve and shared some strategies with the wider community. Good work fella.

DeVanagloris's Avatar


DeVanagloris
07.17.2014 , 05:39 PM | #4
please keep posting the rest of the parts. After playing the game for more than a year, i came to the conclusion that pvp is the real endgame content, and i enjoy playing it, and to learn more advices and strategies is always welcome. However, watching what players do sometimes is really frustrating. lowbies are made to learn to play the different warzone maps, and learn the strategies, but at 55 everyone is supposed to know what they do, and its not like that. i wish reading guides like this was an obligation for everyone before going into pvp, oh well...
nice guide, keep up the good job

Edit: in my case, i often end up trying to farm medals, i usually try to play objectives only to see in the end how i obtain normal numbers, and get 0 votes, so that takes me to the conclusion that no matter winning or losing, people only look the big numbers and the medals, and thats a pity. imho objectives in this game are not enough rewarded, but ok, thats only my opinion

Liquor's Avatar


Liquor
07.17.2014 , 06:24 PM | #5
Not all the time but most of the time player vote for friends. Each other.

Defense rarely sees a vote. Some do but they have a way of shining. Defend all match and call inc early so team can adjust in time. I'm one of those that plays for the objectives. I end up defending a lot mostly due to everyone else zerging for mid and kills instead of Huttball or nodes.

If you can call inc then hold the objective from being capped long enough, others may see this death as for the team. Then you may get a vote.

Big DPS and HPS won't win matches. There's proof in a number of forum posts.


TIP: if not in a group for PvP and no voice chat you can type out a few pre-made incoming calls in notepad. Copy and paste whatever one you need, say " -= SNOW =- " for Civil War then copy and paste it into chat. Now with your mouse open and close your inventory so the pre-toyed message is ready. Guard snow and when you see someone incoming, press enter TWICE. Now your message is in Ops chat without typing. Even enter and ctrl+V, enter is faster than typing.

I get called a MACRO'er because I do this so often. It's an insta-call for help and your team can react swiftly. Even typing the number of enemy coming to you helps. It's just copy and paste. Easy to see when fighting. Players will be forcd to bring more players over since th caught on to the quicker calls. Thus taking player off other objectives.

Best if you run the game in full screen windowed mode. Coming back from desktop is faster. I set up my chat prior to start while waiting for the timer. If I'm changing nodes I'll make the adjustments on my message when I get a chance.

gocard's Avatar


gocard
07.17.2014 , 07:20 PM | #6
Quote: Originally Posted by Tim-ONeil View Post
Voidstar Specific Strategy.

Basic.

My premades have always used the left/right method in here using the map as a constant. Why not east west? I've found some people have trouble with cardinal directions in an indoor setting in game. Sounds crazy but Left/Right works as long as you use the map as your point of reference. Everyone should always be watching the map anyway so they know where their teammates are.


Attackers.

The beginning minute of the game sets the tempo for the rest of the match and is usually the point where a warzone will start to fall apart if progress is not made. Therefore a strong start is essential.
This is an example of a bad strategy and you see it often in a game of voidstar. Someone says "All left/right and stealth to the opposite side". This will ONLY work against a completely brain dead team, meaning most of the time you've set yourself up to lose. Always assume your opponent is decent and use the overload strategy.

This involves sending everyone to a single side to bring the maximum team DPS possible. This means it's important to zerg as fast as you can before they have a chance to adjust. It has two effects; starting off they have to defend both sides and therefore are not in a position to defend as well and killing them quickly by focusing your DPS together will sap their moral. PVP is as much mental as anything and a distracted or disheartened opponent will make mistakes.
Your core points are extremely useful, and things everyone should be doing. Every beginner PVPer should read and learn it.

I do have a difference of opinion with this section about Voidstar. I've found most people refer to left/right as the direction you drop from the spawn area. You're saying it refers to left/right on the map. This is obviously confusing. I'd rather still say east/west. If someone doesn't know if they're at east/west while they're playing, they can at least logically figure it out, since I've never seen a map have South at the top of it.

And as far as zerging left or right as an attacker, I tend to dislike that strategy. Yes, you'll have a 8v7, but how long will it take you to whittle them down? With all the guarding and cross healing, the gate will open long before you have time to whittle it down to a CCable number. I tend to prefer a 4/4 split to start, because you split up the defending team's guarding and cross healing. One method for doing this is 4 in the left side of the ops group continue to go left and the 4 in the right side continue to go right. You can build a numbers advantage due to the immediate respawn for attackers vs the gate for defenders. The other way is to have people rotate on death. This creates a slow rotate, where the defense may not switch rapidly enough, because they're busy killing off the last 2 attackers with their 4 and can't rotate immediately because they don't know if the respawn will return or rotate. If the rotation seems to be working, sometimes it will be the better play to sacrifice myself by returning to the disadvantaged side, just to make sure the defenders don't rotate.

The main thing is, more than 2 defenders and you're not likely to CC cap. So which is the faster way to whittle down to 2 defenders: 8v7 or 2 4v4s? And remember, attackers respawn immediately.

I don't have any stats to back up if this strategy works better, but I feel like I've had higher success with it.

Finally, let me add a tactic when it comes to defending in Voidstar and Civil War. Stealthers need to stealth out before the team wipes. Sometimes, this may mean you're sitting in stealth for a while while your team gets whittled away (don't stealth out too early though, since youre just leaving your team a man down if you do). But stealthing out and then interrupting cappers with mez first and then combat until reinforcements arrive can save a match.
Harbinger: Neymr - Shadow | Neymar - Vanguard | Nymar - Powertech
Huttball Videos

Gnoblesse's Avatar


Gnoblesse
07.17.2014 , 07:45 PM | #7
One thing I didn't see mentioned here is the possible use of battle rez. It's really tricky to pull off if you're not in voice with the person you're trying to rez...but if you can pull one off, especially on the voidstar bridges - you can buy yourself a bunch of extra time, depending on who you rez.

gocard's Avatar


gocard
07.17.2014 , 07:45 PM | #8
Quote: Originally Posted by Tim-ONeil View Post
This is completely legal and takes a team that is able to communicate and pull it off. Done correctly with it will drive the other team insane. There's nothing better than jumping across on offense, turning around throwing the player you jumped to into the gap and then planting before the bridge is down. Again it's completely legal.
I believe they fixed this. Maybe I'm mistaken but I remember reading in a patch that the second doors won't light up until the bridge is down.
Harbinger: Neymr - Shadow | Neymar - Vanguard | Nymar - Powertech
Huttball Videos

Tim-ONeil's Avatar


Tim-ONeil
07.21.2014 , 12:43 PM | #9
Thanks for all the replies and alternative strategies. These are just the ones I've found the most success with and are perfect for the groups I run with.

Also... Since I posted this I've seen some of my suggestions used against me this weekend. Thanks StimAddicts! LOL
Rhy Phin
Kl Nemonica
The Ren Legacy Server: Ebon Hawk US/EAST

Icykill_'s Avatar


Icykill_
07.22.2014 , 08:35 PM | #10
This is a great post... So many people don't understand the importance of team work and what different classes are best at... Ie a stealth at a node defending of doing a ninja will rarely get as many medals as the person doing a death match in the middle of the map because they think the highest DPS or medals makes them the best player... All the while the other team is winning the match
Not passing in Huttball, death matching and not chasing the ball carrier will lose you the match... I rarely get many medals or DPS out in Huttball... I'm too busy trying to win... Of all the maps, Huttball is the most important to have team work.... If only people would treat it like a sport... Ie like soccer, where passing and defence are paramount
It always amazes me when you give polite advice about passing etc and are ignored... After the match someone not playing as a team will say something like... You did not DPS or got 4 medals... Your a **** player
Really the whole medal and points system needs an over haul to encourage team work
There should also be a message that pops up in the load screen reminding people to vote and what benefits they also get if they do get medals and that if they don't vote they get non
A training zone for your team would also be great... Especially for Huttball so people can practice throwing the ball
Most of the best Huttball wins I have been in... Our team has less than 5 medals a piece and less than 100k DPS... We win 6 nil in about 2 mins because we work as a team and run circles around these people trying to death match us... Then we get accused of hacking... LoL... All because we passed 3 times to the line and won so quickly