The Pirate101 community seems to have given ear lately, so I hope that my feedback will be accepted by the Wizard101 community, as I will lift off the ups and downs of what Exalted PvP has become since the recent updates.
1) Increase in block percentages, very nicely done.
The new fix to critical and critical block ratios seems to be working very well. Exalted PvP is fairly balanced as a combination of the Hades robe and a select of Terror Pack want seems to raise block rating to a satisfactory rate. What I would like to see is an improvement in the amount of block rating talents our pets may have, as critical talents easily outnumber these.
In the future I would like to see more Mastery Amulets giving critical and block rating so schools may finally be able to use outside heals.
2) Pet jewels, somewhat displeasing.
Now many players can have a selected final talent for their pet, excellent addition. Though this addition to pets was very well thought through, the "No Trade" label is quite the burden. I believe that pets should still be trade-able, but should have a level limit (according to the level of the jewel) so lower levels may not use overpowered jewels. I myself use the same pet and share it between 3 of my wizards for PvP, so this addition was quite the letdown.
3) Rank rates consistent, not too great.
I think that the way first age PvP worked out was a lot better. I believe that if you beat somebody of a lower PvP title than you, you should gain around 10 rank. For somebody at your own PvP title, a raise of 16 rank would be nice, and so on. Losing to somebody of a lower rank than you should be more punishing, and vice versa. Achieving a high rank (or Warlord in this case) is extremely easy at the moment, as 25 wins over losses is not very difficult.
4) Earlier update; jewels. Also not too great.
As an avid duelist and owner of several Warlord titles from first age through third age, I believe that there should: a) Be easier access to receiving jewels. Health opals have been very stubborn in drop rates and it's taken me away from some Exalted PvP as I am at a disadvantage between every player I face, since I have far less health. b) Be able to be received as ticket rewards. c) Pierce jewels should not be raised in a linear system. Seeing 7% pierce jewels at level 105 will make the armor pierce issue grow even more.
Fix to armor pierce: I believe that only future gear (gear that will be added in Wizard101's next major storyline update) should have an "extra armor" stat. This stat will do nothing but negate incoming armor pierce and will not be seen in following hoard pack gear or any gear currently. This way KI will be able to monitor and fix armor pierce and resist ratios, and once again make Exalted PvP enjoyable for many.
As it stands: Of course, there is still a lot of work to be done in Exalted PvP, as it's the level with the most flaws ever seen in any meta. But in time I believe PvP can be fixed if KI focuses on these changes.
Absolutely, as an Exalted , it gets really frustrating to be decimated by Fire and Storm wizards in under five rounds that have almost 30% pierce WITHOUT using an aura such as Infallible. Like hello, these guys routinely achieve over 100% base damage already, which requires at least 50% resist just to make their spells do the only damage they should. They don't NEED additional pierce. Shadow Shrike takes care of the pierce problem already. Let's not forget that they can achieve a critical of over 500. And don't tell me that hogwash of how they 'sacrifice pretty much every other statistic to achieve it'. Hello, Critical Wild Bolt can deal over 4000 damage if you're unlucky. You don't NEED block, or any other statistic besides damage if you're an offensive school like storm.
It is impossible to actually have balanced gear and expect to win in Exalted PVP. Either you're a glass tower or a Jade, and if you're neither, then expect to be destroyed.
Currently shields are becoming more and more useless as more and more PVP players are reverting to Colossal'ed low pip spam strategies that can deal a significant portion of your health way faster than you can heal.
A potential solution to the pierce problem would be Mirror Gear, which would work by mirroring a percentage of incoming pierce damage (or just damage, period) back at the caster.
And, you forgot one important problem, which is the availability of essential treasure cards like Enfeeble, Shift, and Triage.
I talked about this before, but way too many PVP'ers blade endlessly and then play a mega DOT on you, which renders your weaknesses and shields useless unless you happen to spam the right shields from the beginning. Sardonyx crafted amulets help a little, but 2 cards will not help when you can get a 30-40-35-45% blade stack in 4 turns. Unless you're storm or life, Earthquake is currently the ONLY viable defense against this strategy.
Also, crafted gear needs to be on par with Crowns gear.
PvP King stated, "As it stands: Of course, there is still a lot of work to be done in Exalted PvP, as it's the level with the most flaws ever seen in any meta. But in time I believe PvP can be fixed if KI focuses on these changes."
I pretty much agree with your overview, but the statement above is the key.
KI generated new pet jewels, new crown dungeons, new crown items in the crown shop, and the list goes on and on. All resources are being spent on crown items, because of the huge number of crowns being spent in the game.
If I was KI, and I saw that people were spending a ton of crowns, yes, I would generate more crown items. All resources would go to crown items and not to fixing the problems in the game. That is why PvP is still in the state that it's in, crown spending.
After 7 plus years why hasn't the first turn advantage been corrected? Crowns, you bet. After all the complaints why hasn't PvP been balanced, same reply.
This is exactly why I believe it will never be fixed. KI keeps coming up with band-aid measures to fix the problem, that never get to the root of the problem.
Sadly Veracity, I think you may be right. That or KI simply has too much to work on, although I happen to doubt it is the latter if they have the time to create Ultra Seeds and new Exalted Dungeons, yet 'forget' to implement PVP timers to end long-running matches (or even create a tie option in that scenario). I am not new to programming, and I know that unless they have to completely rewrite their object-oriented code to count how many turns have passed (quite unlikely), or if they want to somehow force a winner based on damage points, shielding, etc. (which I believe they have already done based on Tournament play), then there really should be no reason why many of the existing in-game problems still exist (like pierce, the first turn problem, etc).
Hopefully one day soon, most - if not all - of the myriad problems here will actually be addressed in a timely manner. Otherwise people may get tired of feeding the farming machine, and this game will really start to go downhill.
Adrian Exalted , Master . Promethean Crafter Rank 10 Gardener