Swinging an ax into the back of an unaware healer is an itch no console games can scratch. PvP (Player vs. Player) has evolved from simply running around praying on the innocence of questers, to structured destruction of another faction's territory. From the introduction of PvP in 1991's Neverwinter Nights to today's gaming, PvP has come a long way.
In the new age, PvP has been faction based. Horde vs. Alliance, Defiant vs. Guardians, and Sith vs. Jedi eventually become the trend of PvP society. While there is nothing more satisfying than taking down the Horde warrior just in time to score the last flag for your team, it does get very stale.
Following World of Warcraft, many games adopted the faction based PvP all adding minor twist but almost the same generic battlegrounds.
With a tyrant in the industry leading everyone in their footsteps, a few have broken the mold. Rift, the MMO calling out the WoW giant had very forgettable PvP experience. Even though they provided members with a promising PvP spec as to help separate the PvP and PvE environment, their problem laid with extreme unbalance of classes and generic battlegrounds, offering very little variety.
While I have no interest in going into the travesty of PvP that is Star Wars: The Old Republic, I must as a show of what PvP should not be. Before I start I must say I did enjoy the concept idea of Huttball due to the refreshing difference compared all the other battlegrounds out there. For those not familiar, you can begin PvP at level 10, but doing so tosses you in a "warzone" with people of any level. It scales the players hitpoints to compete with the rest of the members but does not supply you any new abilities. Often times I found myself thwarted by members of the same class due to my lack of abilities. After quickly realizing that the money was not well spent I found the MMO of my dreams.
Tera Online is a Korean made game that brought the revolutionary True Action Combat. All classes must aim, lock on targets, and even auto-attack themselves. The game shines even in early game providing large entertainment in crushing even regular mobs with a ridiculously over-sized weapon.
The PvP is surprisingly the best balance I have seen in a long time, relying mainly on player skill rather than class selection. The sour taste does come from the PvP servers. Not being one for PvP servers originally, due to the ganking and the lack of teamwork so early in the game, I found this one to be just as bad but with a few upsides. The re-spawning is random causing almost no one to be camping corpses or areas. After switching to a PvE server I found myself still having fun but being rather bored. Even the adding of death-match and guild vs. guild PvP could not fill the void I was looking for.
Despite my entire rant in this post I find myself contradicting the statement of boring, structured PvP. I regret saying I miss WoW's battlegrounds and find myself wishing for battlegrounds in Tera. The PvP world has changed from just lobbing arrows at enemies, to capturing flags, holding bases, and playing Huttball. As long as there will be people applying original ideas I will be a PvPer the rest of my life. It is not just breaking the mold, it is breaking the old...ways. Where it will go from here is a question I can not wait for the answer to.