An Eye for an Eye

All reports point to Eye of the Storm as being the problem battleground for the School of Hard Knocks achievement. If guildmates who are skilled in PvP leave it frothing in rage, I can only imagine how inexperienced players are taking it.

There are two problems in EotS. First, your task can be easily disrupted by one player from either team. Because there is only one flag, someone can take the flag but refuse to capture it.  And players from your own team can grief you — and there’s nothing you can do about it.

Second, mutual assistance pacts don’t work in EotS. You are in competition not only with your opponents, but also your own teammates to capture a flag. There’s no way to equally distribute the achievement across a random group, let alone cross-faction.

The advice I gave in my School of Hard Knocks post still applies: don’t give up. If this is the last thing standing between you and that 310%, you will kick yourself for an entire year if you give up now.

But if what you’re doing just isn’t working, then it’s time to try something new. If one strategy – going in solo to capture the flag – isn’t working, it’s time to try something new.

It’s time to go to war.

There are two days left in Children’s Week. It’s time to abandon your scruples, your reserve, and your solitary nature. It’s time to go in with a new goal: dominate EotS so that you and a few others on your team get the achievement done. It’s time to find the biggest, baddest PvPers on your server and promise them a bloodbath in exchange for your getting to run the flag.

If you’re at the end of your rope in EotS, it’s time to bring the gun into a knife fight. It’s time to get as many friends as you can to come and beat the crap out of your enemy.

By dominating the BG and bottling up your opponents, you remove half of your competition. Don’t feel bad for them, not for one second – there is no way for you and them to reach your goal together, so you’re going to reach it. Period. The BG isn’t set up that way. So you have to win to win.

And by making it a group with a controlled composition, you give yourself a great chance to either run the flag yourself or to have a teammate hand it over for you to cap.  You remove the number of slots available to random people who can ruin your efforts.

Look at it this way — out of the 15 available slots on your team, the more you fill with either friends interested in helping you or server mates interested in killing the enemy, the less competition you have for the School of Hard Knocks.

So don’t go in alone.  Bring friends.  Lots of friends.


I heard the following last night in Trade.

LFG for that stupid School of Hard Knocks achievement, pst

This is not the way to go about assembling a team.  You are not making a School of Hard Knocks premade.  Advertising for that will get you the wrong kind of applicants – namely, people just like you who will compete for your goal.  You do not want competition.  You do not want inexperienced fighters.

Instead, you want the rough folks who are spoiling for a fight, the frustrated pvpers who want their battleground back. You want people who can calmly massacre hundreds of enemy players without batting an eye.  You want to take the people who are griefing your opponents and use them to your advantage.

So instead of:

LFM School of Hard Knocks, EotS

Appeal to the PvPer with promises of glory and blood:

Looking for kickass PvPers to come help own EotS. I’d like to do some flag running while we pay the Horde/Alliance back for the last week. PST for info.

By stressing things like winning and revenge, you attract the folks who are spoiling for a fight.  You want the PvPers in Wrathful who want to kick the shit out of people.  And trust me, those people are out there.

If promising a bloodbath doesn’t work, resort to the oldest trick in the book:  pay people.  People are ultimately mercenaries, and if you offer them 100g to help you get this achievement, you will get people to help.  Just remember to pay them after you get the achievement.

If you’re balking at that price, remember:  you’re paying 1400g for a 310% mount.  Keep that goal firmly in mind and the cost won’t matter.

Be sure to be up front with people when they do respond that you’re in it for the achievement, but stress that you want to win EotS.  Be honest, but appeal to their motives, not yours.


Once you have the group, you want to give them a simple strategy to make sure they win.  There have been some great suggestions by the commenters on the School of Hard Knocks guide that I completely endorse.  They boil down to:

  1. Take three bases and ignore the flag at first.
  2. Half of your team pressure the fourth base, while the other half goes and wipes out midfield.
  3. Grab the flag (or have a teammate bring it to you.)
  4. Bottle up the opponents at the fourth tower and/or graveyard.
  5. Cap the flag.
  6. Kill the opponent at the fourth base, drive them to the spawn point.
  7. Win EotS.
  8. PROFIT.

You can sum this up as:

Okay, first we take three bases, then split up and pressure the fourth base while wiping out midfield.  Let me cap the flag, then we can take the fourth base and leave the Horde/Alliance in midfield as easy pickings.

Keep it simple.  Three bases, then take the flag away once, then four-cap.  Let your mercenaries do the rest.  They know what they’re doing…. mostly.  🙂


It’s practically an axiom in my guild that 5 people (with or without vent) can completely dominate a battleground.  I’ve seen this happen a lot — a core group of people working together in a PuG is vastly stronger than individuals trying to coordinate on their own.

So if you are still having problems with the School of Hard Knocks, find people to help you.  If your guild won’t do it, recruit bloodthirsty, frustrated PvPers.  If you can’t get them to sign on, pay them.  Do whatever it takes to win. Do not give up.  You can still do this.

Now go out and show the Eye of the Storm who’s in charge here.


Filed under Cynwise's Battlefield Manual

14 responses to “An Eye for an Eye

  1. I did this last year on my paladin, and this year decided to help a couple of my non-PvP-ing guildies. EotS was by far the roughest for us, where the everyone would charge the middle for the flag… and just sit there.

    If they died, they’d run back to the center.

    It was a battle just to keep a single tower. And we had one person who even picked up the flag when we had none (and of course the wise guy asked him where was he going to cap it).

    One of my guildies managed to get the flag though. I had to tell at him to go travel form and not waddle over to the tower as a bear to make sure he made it while it was clear, but he made it. Now there’s just the other one who still needs it. :\

  2. According to bliz you will be able to train 310 in Cataclysm. I don’t know what the cost will be, maybe the 1400g will pale in comparison.

  3. battlechicken


    Screw the mount, I ❤ achievements. I got very, VERY lucky last year. I got into an EotS pug where everyone said from the beginning, "Hey, most of us are here for the achievement anyway, let's make this short, sweet, and simple. Let's cap a tower and let everyone take turns running the flag."

    Not only did everyone get their achievement, we also won because after everyone who needed to run the flag had done it, we all went on the offensive, capping two more towers and sailing through to victory. It was the single best moment of Children's Week for me last year.

  4. chckenmcbndy

    Got EOTS as my random on my lunch break and the group listened to this same strat I posted during the buff phase. We quickly grabbed 3 towers and dominated the game.

    Several people got the flag achievement and I was able to convince the blood hungry pvp players to push the fourth tower. Notch 1 more up for the EOTS domination achievement and several happy pve players. Win/Win!

  5. Got my flag today, and the experience was exciting, terrifying and unbearably annoying all at the same time.

    The group I was in was more or less following Cyn’s outlined strategy, and while we couldn’t seem to control the center as well as we would have liked, there was enough going on (battle for midfield, tower assault/defense) that at one point, two of us were able to kill the enemy flag carrier and turn that into a capture.

    Some observations:

    Be patient. You still have a few days. But definitely don’t leave it until Saturday evening to try and pick this up.

    Always, always, *always* make sure you have your orphan out. Missed the achievement on my first capture because I forgot to check 😦

    If you can, try to play at an off-peak time on your server. Over the last few days, I’ve played EotS 26 times. The first 25 were between 10pm-2am EST, and it was very obvious that we were going up against the same premade groups over and over – and they were stomping us into the ground, over and over. I jumped on over lunch today, and the battle was very different – the hardcore PvP players were missing, and while it was a tough fight, the terms were much more equal. Which made getting that capture much more possible.

    If you’re just there for the achievement, and you have the speed to pull it off, the start of the battle may be your best chance to hit the flag and get your capture. Especially if you have some folks willing to run interference for you at the flag spawn. Get a mage to slow fall you just before the start of the battle so you can float directly for the flag instead of having to drop and run.

    Whether or not you cap the flag right of, do *not* leave the battleground. PLAY TO WIN. You signed on for the fight, hoping to get your achievement – so stick around for the battle. And really, dominating the battlefield (capture all four towers and control the center) *is* the best way to win, and to get yourself more opportunities to capture the flag.

    Be gracious. I was annoyed at a pally who told me “no” when I asked if he’d drop the flag for me… then he got his third capture in the battle, and his “Bound For Glory” achievement. There are other folks in the BG whose goals are different from yours. Work together, help them win, and you’ll have more help in your own efforts when your time comes.

    Be willing to die for the flag carrier. Make sure they know that if they get the flag, you’re going to put yourself between them and any pursuit and poly, stun, slow, shackle, hamstring, root, nova, and otherwise nail anyone chasing them to the ground. Do this so that when you get the flag, they’ll be willing to do the same for you.

  6. I got my EotS last night. It wasn’t pretty and I’m not particularly proud of it… The flag carrier on our team hit “something” – maybe rocket boots… or something and the flag dropped. I was running escort at the time… So I picked it up… I spent 14 games assaulting and capturing towers and escorting flag carriers and when the flag dropped right in front of me, I took it and capped it. I stayed for the rest the of battle (that we won) continuing to assault and defend tower. I think four other people on our side got the achievement. So I’m living proof that you don’t have to camp out at midfield and ignore the tower to get your flag capture…

  7. Asmenedas

    I still have to turn in the quest for the pet and go kill the King in UP, but I got SoHK by following the Modest proposal. I also encouraged and organized a few other BGs (namely WSG) to help out too. But yes, I have a deep seated need for violence at this point. Once Kytara can get her SoHK done, the next time I look into the Eye of the Storm, it will be raining blood! I encourage anyone on Medivh (Hordeside) to let Shalenar know if you need the achievement…I will happily run interference for you.

  8. Last year I took a three month break during the summer and missed two holidays including this one. I started SOHK on day one of this holiday and finished it in about one and a half hours.
    In EOTS, this was what I did: mount on a 3-man mammoth, get 2 ppl to assist on it, get slow fall from a mage, and charge the flag. I capped the flag first in the BG on my first try…not sure why so many people are having problems with this achievement.

  9. Klymus

    I didn’t do SoHK last year because I was having ‘Net speed issues and didn’t know a thing about PvP. since then I have been dabbing into BGs on a regular basis. First to get tokens for the PvP mounts, then with the random BG that is the only thing I do now. I love BGs! in fact I only PvE for the emblems to finish off my PvP set.

    I think I was lucky, I finished SoHK the very first day and only one try for each BG. I tried assisting everyone before I got the achv but once I realized it was every man for himself, I got my achievement done in no time. Good luck to everyone just keep at it and if you see Klymus (I am the only one on all US realms) in your BG I will be more than happy to help with your achv.

  10. Conrose

    EotS last year for me came down to “Got the Achievement in half an hour and used Shadowstep to camp at Horde Spawn Point pwning them as they spawn” for the rest of the week. I grinded ridiculous amounts of honor that week from kills alone.

  11. EotS was the only part of that achievement I didn’t get last year, but I never tried to form a group of real PVP’ers lol. /facepalm

    Great info!

  12. Vok

    I got my achievement last year, but this year a whole heap of guildies did pre-mades in EotS and we owned it. We had two real PvPers and the rest were PvEers. We owned.

    I highly recommend doing this not just for achievements, but for fun too. BGs are awesome when done with guildies.

    • Conrose

      I bet you were really surprised by just how much more effective at BG PvP a group of players working together are, even if they are not necessarily PvPers.

      That said; Cynwise, any plans to make an article or several relaying the rather varied roles, challenges and tactics each player can represent in each of the Battlegrounds such as… “So I saw a Deathknight and a Druid standing by a cliff by Lumbermill.” A lot of players new to the BG’s have a hard time coping with say the “Unknown” element that Rogues and Druids present, and I’ve been known to sap a Hunter just to get them to flare camp for a few minutes while I went off and attacked someone elsewhere. Paladins that remember that they CAN use Hands of Freedom on someone other than themselves, Hunters who know when and when not to use Aspect of the Pack. High avoidance Rogues, Tank specced Plate wearers and pretty much any Druid being used as an FC, etc. Not to mention the chaotic nature of BG’s allows players to get away with specs and gearing that they couldn’t get away with in Arenas… ever get burned by a Pyro Mage hiding behind a stump in WSG?

  13. I got around to reading to late for SoHK, however this will still work for 5-cap achievement runs if you want.

    I didn’t go with a complete premade, just 4 mates.

    We made it clear we were going to hold mid, while the rest held two bases and made feints at the others.

    Once we had mid secure, we called for flag runners. We wound call out as the previous one was reaching the base so the new one would be there when the flag spawned.

    We not only got everyone’s achievements but won the game.

    In hindsight, the reason the losing games occur is that the focus is on protecting the flag, not midfield.

    We didn’t protect flag runners, we just prevented the Horde passing our 3 bottlenecks. (2 bases and mid)