The Benefit of Panic
A really useful tool for defeating a freep, any freep, is panic. If you induce a bit of panic into your opponent then you gain a serious advantage over them because thy will be less focused and more prone to making mistakes. It’s a tried and tested tactic that can produce some great results, especially against classes that you might normally find difficult to solo. Sometimes it can be just the edge you need to tip the fight in your favour.
The aim of panicking your opponent is twofold:
- cause them to divert attention from killing you
- cause them to make mistakes
The first is pretty simple and probably the easiest of the two goals.If you can cause your opponent to become distracted then they are obviously not going to be focusing all their attention on killing you.The second goal is a bit harder to pull off because it really relied upon the freep and how much of a cool head he has to maintain his composure and keep himself focused.
How Do You Panic Them?
There isn’t anything too hard about panicking your opponent, it is simply a case of making them divert their attention away from killing you. So how do you do that? Well there are a number of different things you can do that can instill a bit of chaos in a freep’s mind …
This may seem like a really obvious statement to make, but do as much damage as you can at the start of the fight. You’re probably thinking “Aren’t I supposed to do that anyway?“. Yes, you are. However, what about that debuff you include in your opening rotation? Or maybe you hold back Scratch and Snip or Eye Rake at the start of a fight for use later on? Whatever the case may be it could be that you aren’t quite going ‘full guns’ at the start of a fight.
Now apart from actually helping you to kill the freep faster, doing a lot of damage at the start of the fight does something else …it forces the freep to divert attention from you when he wakes up out of his stun. He is going to have to deal with the fact that you have just taken out a sizeable chunk of his morale.Maybe it will only take him a second or two to pop a pot or get off a heal, but if you’ve done enough damage to make him worry about his morale right at the start of the fight then you have put the fight on your terms already. You’ve forced the freep to waste a few seconds dealing with his depleted morale instead of hitting you and you’ve dictated to him when he has to use his pot or his self-heal.
Attacking a freep that is already engaged with NPCs is a great idea and not just because the NPCs deal some extra damage on the freep for you. It can often be the case that a freep will feel the heat immediately if you attack whilst he has NPCs on him, even if it’s a tough freep that can take a few hits e.g. a Champion, Guardian, etc. The shock of seeing themselves surrounded by mobs and having a warg chewing on them can be enough to cause some freeps to decide to try and make a run for it instead of standing their ground, even if they could probably take you all on and win.
As soon as a freep starts running the fight is in your hands because you are going to be doing more damage from behind as well as the freep making it hard for himself to defend or attack you whilst he runs.
This is sort of a counter-face to the Damage tactic above. Sometimes just by surviving a while a freep can start to become desperate and increasingly make mistakes. This is difficult to do on a warg because we aren’t really able to build for much survivability, even with Shadow Howler. However, stacking morale, using armour pots, etc can give us a bit more survivability.
Some freeps are so used to their set attack pattern burning us down fast that when we don’t just Disappear and run they get a bit flustered and start to run out of ideas. It actually works against Burglars quite well from time to time although with the current exploit some Burglars are using they can probably burn you down very quickly indeed. Nevertheless you can sometimes cause confusion and mistakes just by not dying as expected.
These are great little tools for causing some panic. The Lore-master that hits you with a nice long stun and thinks he has plenty of time to zap you with lighting can get a little flustered when you immediately pot out of it and resume your attack. So too the Burglar that throws Dust In Your Eyes at you to slow you can become just a little less sure when you use a wound pot to cure it.
It’s not going to induce mortal terror in a freep if you pot out of an effect, but it can, and often does, disrupt their flow of attack and forces them to think quickly to come up with something else. That’s exactly what you want to do, keep them constantly on their toes. That means not wasting pots for inconsequential effects e.g. not using a pot to break a 3 sec Lore-master stun when he has a longer stun from Test of Will or Ents Go To War. The minor effects probably aren’t part of the freep’s plan to lock you down, more just something he’s throwing at you.It’s the major debuffs and crowd control effects you want to counter because it will be these effects the freep is counting on to hamper you most and give himself he biggest advantage.
Take Them Unawares
This is of course a good strategy for wargs in general, but getting the jump on a freep when he is least expecting it can really work wonders. If he isn’t expecting to be attacked then his initial reactions will likely be poor and the chances of him making a mistake will be higher.
Questing freeps can be good for this. If I spot one out in the open I usually observe them for a bit, letting them get on with their questing. After a while of not being attacked they start to let their guard down and relax a little bit, getting more focused on the quest. However, there is also that anticipation in the back of their mind that they will be attacked and when I actually do go for the kill I can sometimes almost see the look of sudden panic on their face before I rip it off. Muhahaha!
This of course only really works against induction based classes, but you would be surprised at just how panicked a Lore-master can get when you keep interrupting their inductions. They probably have anti-stun active so saving pounce for a stun is pointless anyway so use it every time it is up and you see an induction along with Eye Rake too of course. The same applies to any induction class really, just keep interrupting them as often as you can. They will usually try a few times to get the inductions off before getting frustrated starting to just use anything they can. That’s the point where they loose control of what they’re trying to do and simply start throwing the kitchen sink at you in desperation.