Wizard101 5th Age PvP Launch
After many tweets, discussions, Dev Diaries, KI Lives, roundtables, patches, and most importantly, updates, 5th Age PvP has finally arrived with the Wizard101 2022 Spring Update. Players can venture into the brand new Arena, just off of Unicorn Way, and start their tales of glory in Ranked PvP. This update brings a lot of changes to PvP this rework from the ground up. Everything is finalized and ready for action. Whether you are new or old to PvP, we’d like to invite you into the Arena to show off your spell slinging skills against other players!
Format Changes to 5th Age PvP
Below are a list of changes introduced with the launch of 5th Age PvP. To start off, we have some Ranked 1v1 format changes. These changes are centered around the structure of PvP matches and other aspects of the ranked experience. Some of these changes might not directly relate to combat, but they are important for a comprehensive understanding of PvP as a whole.
5th Age PvP Timer
This timer works exactly like the the version introduced in the 2021 Fall Update. Each player will have a 5 minute timer that tracks their time. Every round players will have 20 seconds to choose their spells and discard or draw as they set up their strategy. As time runs down small icons will be displayed next to both you and your opponent to indicate how much time is left. A yellow clock is used to indicate a 2 minute warning. A red clock is used to indicate a 1 minute warning. This isn’t much different from the previous timer but a notable change for those who have been keeping up. However, there are a few additional bits of information regarding the timer.
If either player runs their timer to zero the match will end and a draw will be declared. In the event of a draw both players will lose the match and receive the same penalties as a regular loss. Additionally, an infraction system has been introduced behind the scenes. Both players will be tagged with an infraction if the match concludes with a draw.
Players who build up too many infractions will be suspended from PvP. This is a short term suspension and will be used to incentive players to stop playing to timer or concede the match if possible. While this may seem a bit extreme, in many cases the only people collecting enough infractions are those who are purposefully stalling out PvP.
One last note on the infraction system. Above is a notification you may get in game when an infraction is put on your character. Besides draws, players may also get an infraction for declining matches or disconnecting.
The ranked system has a new way of determining skill. The developers have introduced an ELO system into ranked to replace the previous system. Previously, players would get +/-16 rank depending on whether they won or lost the match. The ELO system is designed to compare both players’ skills and distribute points to the winner and loser according to who is expected to win.
The contributing factors to who is expected to win are rank and rating. A player who is ranked Knight and has 1700 rating would be expected to beat a Recruit who has 1500 rating. In this instance the Knight is favored to win because of higher skill range, and possibly more experience. If the Recruit wins the match, they will gain more elo and the Knight will lose more elo. If the Knight wins the match they will gain less elo and the Recruit would lose less elo. This is to help level out the skill differences between players. With the old system a player would get the same value for beating a warlord as they would for beating a private. But with this system, rank is rewarded rapidly or slowly based on the types of players you compete against.
In the above example, two players of the same rank and rating (Recruit 1500) are gaining and losing the same amount. This looks like a great change and should help ease player frustrations when matched with opponents who are outside of their skill range.
5th Age Leagues
Leagues are an additional feature to Ranked PvP. Each league serves as a custom ruleset and they have been created to keep certain changes or features restricted to certain levels or types of PvP. 4 leagues will be set up with the launch of 5th Age. Each league caters to a specific level range to help preserve what players like about the gameplay in that area. For more information check out our Wizard101 PvP Leagues guide for a full explanation of each league as well as other possibilities for the future.
The final change to Ranked PvP is the addition of seasons. Much like Pirate101 PvP will have shorter seasons with more frequent resets. Unlike before, 5th age will not be an unlimited grind for rank. Players should expect a season to last about 2 months or 60 days. There are still some uncertainties about how this transition will actually work and how much of a reset it will be, but I’m sure the devs will provide more information as we near the conclusion of the first season.
5th Age Meta Changes
Along with many of the other changes to PvP, there have also been changes specifically targeting the meta. From new spells, new spellements, gear, and spell changes, there are a lot of moving parts with the launch of 5th Age PvP. It may be a bit longer before players are able to accurately understand how the meta will play out.
Solar Surge and Enchants
The biggest change by far is the removal of Solar Surge. Not too long ago pre-enchants and damage enchants were removed from PvP in exchange for a single spell, Solar Surge. This spell allowed many of the same capabilities but in a much more limited fashion. With only one spell, deck copies were limited and players had to rely on finding these enchants before they could throw out there more potent attacks.
With it’s removal from PvP, this spell is decreasing the damage output of normal spells, and putting the gambits and shadow spells back on top. Without the need for these enchants players will likely find it a bit easier to find spells and avoid deck fails.
Additionally, healing enchants have also been banned from PvP to curb healing from being too strong. This includes both the ban of Primordial and Radical spells, as well as their TC and item card versions.
To further dissuade stalling and/or healing abuses, incoming healing stat has reduced to 0 in all 4 PvP leagues. This change shouldn’t affect tournaments or other non Ranked 1v1 PvP options. Outgoing still remains as a healing stat and has not currently received any change to its functionality.
5th Age Gear
One of the more surprising changes to come out of this update includes multiple pieces of gear being reworked. Other pieces have been retired from loot tables and replaced with new gear targeting the intended PvP experience. These new options are available for levels 50, 100, and 150. For max level wizards this includes changes to the Merciless gear.
These gear changes are refreshing as many pieces in the past few updates have really been unoriginal and only offered slight stat increases every 10 levels. These new gear sets aim to prioritize build diversity and to allow players to pursue their desired stats. I’m thrilled to see more gear that really lets players change up their stats to better reflect strategies they are trying to run.
Outside of PvP, one of the other big initiatives of this update was to start the spellement rework. Included in that are a few new trainable spells along with new spellement paths for rank 1-6 spells available during arc 1. These spellements attempt to weave in more roshambo identities to some of our older spells. Some of these spells have become really good for both their own school but also for other schools who synergize with each other because of roshambo. However, at the moment, spellement acquisition will be a bit slow. Because of this, these spells may not been seen in 5th Age right off that bat but I’d expect players to gradually accumulate upgrades between the next few months.
With the release of these new spellements, TCs have also been created that mirror the tier 2 version of the new upgrades. The TCs are available from the same sources as the spellements. Additionally there are crafting recipes in the arena.
5th Age Rewards
With the launch of 5th Age BLUE Arena Tickets have been introduced for rewards. Among some of the old rewards, such as jewels, housing items, and gear. There are also new cosmetic pieces for stitching purposes and reagents for PvP crafting.
Traditionally players are rewarded with tickets depending on how they finish the match. This is continuing in 5th Age but that won’t be the only rewards players obtained from matches. After every match players will see a gift icon on the left side of the screen with some reagent drops from the match. These new reagents will be key to crafting PvP rewards. Additionally, we’ve been told that rewards will vary based on skill. The higher your skill level the more rewards you get. This could mean more tickets, or better reagents.
Marco Artigiano arrives as the newest guest to Wizard City. With him he brings lots of new crafting recipes for both new and old gear. In an effort to curb the elements of pay-to-win from PvP, Marco has some of the best crowns gear stats in the form of crafted equipment. While they don’t have the cosmetic look of the equivalent crowns gear, they do have the stats. Players can now grind PvP for these other gear pieces instead of them remaining locked behind crowns.
Marco also comes with PvP reagents that can be purchased for tickets. These reagents can be used for gear or new PvP TCs. These TCs include spellement upgrade TCs and roshambo TCs. The new cosmetic gear is also available through Marco. He has these cool new sets that are locked by rank and/or school. The wands he offers also provide a cool new casting animation when used in battle.
Jordo Mistborn returns to the PvP scene to continue to offer players with jewels. He carries many of the same jewels he previously had during 4th Age, however some ticket prices have been adjusted to better reflect rarity of jewels and value compared to ticket gain. Jordo also now carries the PvP mastery amulets for all level ranges of PvP. Definitely don’t want to skip out on those!
Roland Silverheart, the Supreme Warlord. This battle-hardened wizard is offering the same furniture as before. Unfortunately he’s doesn’t have anything new to offer but I remain hopeful that both he and other PvP vendors will receive new items as we get deeper into 5th age PvP.
Last but not least, the PvP Battle Pass. Like many games Wizard101 has adapted the tier-based reward progression system. The more time spent playing the game, the more rewards you get. Previously, we’ve seen this implemented for Events in Wizard101 such as the Deckathalon or Beastmoon. This time around, the Battle Pass is centered on PvP.
In order to gain points for the battle pass you simply must partake in matches. Based on a few test runs in Test Realm, players should be getting 5 points for every win and 3 points for every loss. The Battle Pass requires 631 points. Running the numbers really quickly, that means at the max, you just need to lose 211 matches to get all of the rewards. And if you really want a challenge, you could try completing the scroll within 127 matches, which would require an uninterrupted win streak.
Battle Pass Access
The battle pass can be accessed through any Ranked PvP league kiosk. It will appear at the top of the display. The pass features 6 tiers of rewards with a total of 42 prizes. Of those 42, 19 are premium rewards available for 4999 crowns or 2499 crowns with membership. This is a pretty good deal all around. Rewards include multiple elixirs and crown packs along with some other helpful items to keep you geared up for PvP. Compared to other games, this is a really good deal where we also see the battle passes range from $5-$10.
There’s a lot happening within this update, and still a lot to figure out with the 5th Age launch. Even in the last few days of test realm, we were still seeing many changes before 5th Age hit Live Servers. If you are newer to the PvP don’t hesitate to reach out with questions and concerns. We are all trying to unpack this update together. This update has been a long time coming and we certainly hope to see PvP expand in popularity and enjoyment throughout 5th age!
Have any questions or 5th Age topics you’d like covered?
Feel free to drop ideas in the comments below!