Hiya Players. Today we’re going to continue on our topic of sPVP, going a little bit further into details about the differences between Hot Join Play (HJP/PUGs) and Tournament (tPVP). The two types share a lot of the similarities, but there is also quite a few differences with them.
To start off, let’s take a look at how each type works. In HJP there are many unconnected matches going on at one time. You can pick which of the matches you would like to join from the menu and instantly you’ll be placed on whichever team has the least amount of people (most of the time) to start fighting. Ideally, HJP tries to fill the teams with 8 players each. If things become unbalanced due to people leaving/joining, the game will try to auto-balance. Once a match is done, another match will start right after with the same teams (if nobody leaves) on a new map. This can continue for as long as the player wants.
In Tournament, you participate in an eight team, three-tier single elimination tournament. For the purpose of this article, we’re going to focus on open/free tournaments, as they’re all that is available right now. In the future, we’ll talk about the different types when they are released. Because there is a need for eight teams to form, there is also often a little bit of a wait period. Unlike HJP, tournament teams only consist of 5 players each and once the match has begun the game will not attempt to auto-balance the teams. Once a match is over and you are victorious, you’ll be sent back to Heart of the Mists to wait for the next round – If you lost your team is disband and you are eliminated from the tournament. You’ll remain on the same team as long as you win, or until the tournament is over. You’re also able to switch characters (not players) to change your team composition between fights.
Mindset & Expectations
One of the largest differences between HJP and tPVP is that people in tournaments often take it more seriously. In HJP, you can ignore chat and play like a scrub and the only person you’re hurting is yourself since there are usually 7 other people to make up your slack. Since there is only 4 other people in tournament matches, it’s much more difficult if you don’t pull your own weight. Winning needs to be a team effort and you need to bring your game-face so that you’ll win. That said, it’s important to communicate with your team in tournaments to insure the victory. Being able to play your profession at an adequate level is also expected when entering a tournament, regardless of what rank or type. This doesn’t mean you need to be the very best, but you should know what you’re doing.
It’s recommended that you play HJP until you’re familiar enough with your profession that you can win. Open Tournaments are there to be the introduction to tPVP, but not as an introduction to PVP itself. Tournaments are not a place to try out a new build for the first time – Please don’t make your team go through that.
Benefits & Goals
Fighting in a HJP your only goal is to get as much glory as possible, as quick as possible – Winning is good but often secondary. This means your personal plan is to kill people and cap as many nodes as you possibly can. If you zerg around and just blast people, you can easily get over 150 points/glory in a match. However, this usually means there is nobody defending and you lose the match. This is a good place to go if you’re just trying out a new build, getting to know your character, or just want to mess around for a bit.
Tournaments are all about winning the match, regardless of personal score. Capping nodes will get you points/glory, but it’s winning the match that will give you more. In addition to glory, winning matches in a tournament allows you to move on to the next round and the top four teams get tournament chests – Which contain a ton of prizes. Overall you can get much more glory from competing well as a team in a tournament than glory farming yourself in HJP, on top of many more items. That said though, given that open tournaments are the only kind available right now you’re going to run into a lot of pre-made groups and get steamrolled – Be ready for it.
Using glory, you can always purchase chests from NPCs based on your rank (Rabbit chest, Deer Chest, etc). Each type of chest only has certain sets available in them. However these are not the only type of PVP Rewards. When participating in tournament play, you can get sets that are specific to the type of tournament you were in as well – These are often cooler looking than the rank sets.
If you just want to mess around and waste time, stay in HJP games and just hit people. If you would rather have some structure and feel like your accomplishing something, go do some tPVP – Just don’t play like a scrub.