Guild of the Week
Soldiers of Thunderstorm [SoT]
The Soldiers of Thunderstorm [SoT] is a well-established, Russian gaming community. Early on, the core members realized where the future of gaming was going, and their friendship jelled in May of 1998 with the birth of their game child, the Soldiers of Thunderstorm.
Prior to the new millennium, this relatively small band of avid gamers focused on the hottest thing at that time, Diablo. However, the pinnacle of [SoT]'s gaming achievements was the vested interest in Ultima Online from 1999 to 2005. The first Russian UO shard was Lostfort. At this time, the [SoT] leadership split clan projects by assigning in-game squads led by a Guild Master. Guild Masters were responsible for PvP activities and official interactions that the squads established in-game.
The tightly-knit and well-organized membership of [SoT] once again moved forward with the evolution of gaming technology. The precise date of that shift from past to present was October 28, 2004 during the ArenaNet World Preview Event of their first game, Guild Wars.
Overall, [SoT]'s initial reaction to the feature-rich environment was, "Wow! Look! Tomb of the Primeval Kings and Guild-versus-Guild Battles! This is all we really need!" As you might expect with any new venture, there was trial and error. The guild's force of five Fire Elementalists with Bonding Monks did not immediately dominate all opponents, but they were confident that one day they would reach the desired title of top GvG guild. In the many months prior to unveiling Observer Mode, Heroes' Ascent was the best place for them to learn and test builds.
[SoT] needed an imposing PvP task-master at the helm of the guild, and an ex-guild leader (Light Friend) suited the position just fine. Under his demanding tutelage, [SoT]'s performance as a PvP force to be reckoned with steadily grew. Team members quickly developed protocols for maintaining synergy during those instances when pressuring a weakened enemy team or deciding whether to hold the center or fall back to base might swing the direction of battle.
PvP Quick Tips
- Press Tab often to check each member of the enemy team.
- Stay close to the party leader, but not so close that AoE is a threat.
- Never stay in AoE. If the enemy spikes you, retreat into the backline for healing. If the other side is using AoE hexes, spread the damage dealers out.
- The target countdown of the caller should be the main priority for all attackers. If you don't spike with the caller, everything you did over the last few seconds is useless.
- Avoid knockdowns and interrupts. Don't stay close to damage dealers who could interrupt your team's spike or force your Monks to overheal and lose Energy. Many Mesmers use Blackout and Diversion against predetermined targets, so don't camp at the frontline where they can easily get you.
- Inform your party leader about the enemy flag runner, threatening shutdown or AoE, resurrection skills, or detrimental hexes/conditions affecting you.
- It is useless to attack a target that has already been protected or infused.
- When the caller says to fall back or come to a certain location, just do it.
- If you're the leader, remember which enemies have already died, and how many times, so you can spike the most vulnerable players.
- If you have a shutdown hex on you, estimate its recharge and anticipate the next use of that spell.
- Split, catch, kite, provoke, and interrupt your opponents.
- Experiment with your own builds using the different Guild Halls, shift them as needed, and stay current with Observer Mode to see how different builds work or don't work on certain maps.
HA Build: Ranger Spike
|R/N, Caller - Dual Shot, Savage Shot, [Crippling Shot], Read the Wind, Favorable Winds, Rend Enchantments, Gaze of Contempt, Resurrection Signet.
Skills Template: OgQTcmLnZhxUtED2wuGxfFAA
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|R/P, Damage Booster - Dual Shot, [Punishing Shot], Sloth Hunter's Shot, Read the Wind, "Go for the Eyes!", "Find Their Weakness!", "Make Haste!", Resurrection Signet.
Skills Template: OgkjcxZqJSMGZGVgwGWY1b3YCAA
Equipment Template: PkpxbGzzjkqonlIPysnlIBLvilIHTnnlI9krnlIDLA
|R/Rt, Spiking Purifier - Dual Shot, [Punishing Shot], Sloth Hunter's Shot, Read the Wind, Gaze of Fury, Sundering Weapon, Pure Was Li Ming, Flesh of My Flesh.
Skills Template: OgglcxZKoEiiBxYkZUBCbYsRGiBexA
Equipment Template: PkpxbWyzjkqwniIPy0niIDLviiIHTvniI9kzniIDLA
|R/P, Anti-Blocker - Dual Shot, Savage Shot, Sloth Hunter's Shot, Read the Wind, Song of Concentration, [Anthem of Guidance], "Fall Back!", Resurrection Signet.
Skills Template: OgkjcxZrpRMGqGVgwGfYgY7YCAA
Equipment Template: PkpxbGzzjkqQhoIPyYjoIBLvioITSpgoI9k7hoIDLA
|N/D, Orders Supporter - [Order of the Vampire], Pious Concentration, Well of Silence, Awaken the Blood, Aura of Thorns, Mystic Regeneration, Signet of Mystic Speed, Resurrection Signet.
Skills Template: OAplQsG3BpmrIRJYgxn9GcdxehJKAA
Equipment Template: Pk5RR3+XCTaGqjWXqQmzL7wUmzLDLHijIdSPmjI9kTmjIDL
|Mo/Me, SoD Protector - Guardian, [Shield of Deflection], Dismiss Condition, Spirit Bond, Healing Seed, Aura of Stability, Holy Veil, Channeling.
Skills Template: OwUUMs29YYSCEDEbaaRSEPg1EmAA
Equipment Template: Pk5RR36XCTaCkFVLqAhlJNxIjlJDLdilJLRZglJ9kphlJHB
|Mo/Me, Boon Healer - Orison of Healing, Words of Comfort, Spotless Soul, Spotless Mind, [Healer's Boon], Heal Party, Auspicious Incantation, Channeling.
Skills Template: OwUTMsGDXKjguKCECMu6jQ0xEA
Equipment Template: Pk5RRX6XCTaCkFVLqwmiJNx0miJBLbiiJHRvmiJ9kzmiJDL
|Mo/Me, WoH Infuser - Orison of Healing, [Word of Healing], Dwayna's Kiss, Infuse Health, Healing Seed, Holy Veil, Draw Conditions, Channeling.
Skills Template: OwUUMwG/EoGZUjbkkSsm30EA
Equipment Template: Pk5RRf6nCTaCkFVLqwmjJNx0mjJBLbijJHRvmjJ9kzmjJDL
Meet the stormbringing army.
Handle: Denis Mesmer (Denis)
Location: Moscow, Russia
Position: Guild Master, GvG Squad Leader
PvP or PvE: My passion leans toward GvG battles because I get the best adrenal rush while playing against other PvP guilds. Every now and then, I relax and play one of the PvE campaigns or run around with my friends in Eye of the North.
Favorite Profession: Mesmer. I just love running shut-down builds, though I have been yoked with the task of leading GvG. This position usually requires me to embrace the melee professions, since I can manage better in the frontline. Although I prefer Mesmers, running a strong melee build and going toe-to-toe with the enemy is also very exciting.
Why I Joined: Combining forces seemed like the best thing to do! I was managing the Russian PvP guild War Project [WaR] when we met the members of the [SoT] guild. It soon became apparent that joining forces would benefit everyone interested in achieving our mutual goal of becoming the best European GvG guild in the game. Over time, we have not only created a skilled unit of PvP patriots, but have also bonded into real-life friends and confidants.
Handle: Light Friend (Andrew)
Location: Magdeburg, Germany
Position: Ex-Guild Master, Advising Officer
Gaming Background: Warcraft III, CS, Diablo II, StarCraft, Q2/3, Gothic. I started my involvement in computer gaming as a club StarCraft and Quake 2 player, and then I turned to Counter-Strike, while also dabbling in every other PvP-based title that's been interesting enough to deserve my attention. In the case of Guild Wars, I've been actively competitive since its release.
PvP or PvE: Guess what... GvG ;)
Favorite Profession: Warrior
Primary Character: Ranger/Mesmer
Why I Joined: SoT has been a steadfast PvP guild since its foundation. It's been important for me, as anything that requires farming or extensive grind doesn't keep my nod for more than a few weeks.
Handle: Cyber Smoke (Dmitri)
Location: Moscow, Russia
Position: GW squad founder, officer & community leader.
Gaming Background: Mortal Kombat 1-2-3-4, Warcraft II, Dark Legions, Duke Nukem, Command & Conquer, C&C: Red Alert, Diablo (the best item collector), Unreal Tournament, StarCraft (top 600 in 1998), Total Annihilation, C&C: Tiberian Sun (top 50 solo ladder), Dune 2000, Fallout 2, Counter-Strike, Diablo II, Warcraft III: TFT, Guild Wars since Alpha, and tons of other stuff that would steal a page.
Favorite aspect of Guild Wars: For PvE, it's having fun by tanking Shiro on my Legendary Survivor character without quitting the game after Meditation of the Reaper. Try rolling the dice here—it's worth every second. And, if you've pressed F12, know that you didn't pass the test and stop taking the game too seriously. And for PvP, it's running the spell casting builds that use the three different types of character attributes spent equally so that all specified types of magic work efficiently.
PvP or PvE: Both, if you don't rush too much...I wonder if mad Assassins hear me.
Primary Character: Any Monk in charge of defending the base.
Why I Joined: I saw how the guild was born in 1998 and, in early 2004 I started planning for expansion into the world of Guild Wars. I think it's a very cool game and it perfectly feeds my gaming needs.
Handle: A F K (Alex)
Location: Moscow, Russia
Gaming Background: Gothic, Total War, Heroes of M&M series.
PvP or PvE: I prefer PvP, but only GvG. Since the good old beta testing days, I've been an avid Tombs (HA) player, though I stopped after the removal of Rift Wardens and the replacement of a few of the original maps. Perhaps I'll revisit it one day, who knows. At this time, the source of my delight, between GvGs, lies in farming the high-end items with my friends in PvE.
Favorite Profession: For melee classes, it's the Warrior, and amongst the spell caster professions, the Mesmer.
Why I Joined: By the time of the Guild Wars World Preview Event, there hadn't been a vast variety of Russian guilds to join. In fact, only two of them: SoT and RUS Corp. The first one seemed more ambitious and energetic to me, and that was the reason behind my choice. On top of that, I have to say that even with all the obstacles and difficulties we've met on our way, it's still a great pleasure for me to stay here, because of the players.
Handle: Fea Fatale (Oxana)
Location: Saratov, Russia
Gaming Background: UO: Renaissance, Diablo II, Neverwinter Nights, Warcraft III, World of Warcraft.
PvP or PvE: Currently PvP only, just because I rarely have time or desire to get into PvE.
Favorite Profession: It depends. I started with a Mesmer and still admire that profession, though I usually play an Elementalist. Also the Necromancer for a while—both in PvP and PvE.
Why I Joined: Since I realized I had no time to keep my own guild and started to look for another one, I decided it should be Russian. I checked the forums of all Russian guilds, well-known and absolutely new ones, and this guild seemed different to me, kind of special. SoT was one of the first guilds I heard about when I started playing GW, yet I never thought I would get in. But after a year of playing I applied to join and soon got invited. Time shows that it was the right choice, and SoT turned out to be the guild I always wanted my own to look like.
Handle: Tordon DNK (Alexander)
Location: Moscow, Russia
PvP or PvE: After an extended investment of my time in the fabulous PvE environment of Guild Wars, I decided to broaden my gaming horizon and see what PvP offered. This experimental foray into PvP blossomed and quickly captivated my interest. The competitive tension and sense of belonging while playing with comrades in arms is something I look forward to each and every time I log in.
Favorite Profession: Monk...Feel the love! This is the profession I first embraced and still play on a daily basis. I believe that the more you enjoy running the various builds of a specific Guild Wars profession, the better the results will be. I have dabbled with the other great professions, but they only made me realize that I am simply a natural born healer.
Why I Joined: After I realized just how much I enjoyed PvP, my previous PvE guild failed to satisfy my PvP craving and I was fortunate enough to fall in with the members of the SoT Guild. The SoT Guild is where I get my daily fix. That's me, a Guild Wars PvP addict!
Handle: Fon Rengler (Mike)
Location: Moscow, Russia
Position: Member, Heroes' Ascent caller.
Favorite aspects of the game: In the beginning I focused on PvE, especially UW Ecto farming, which was the first serious thing to advance from. After earning a solid fortune, the next step was watching PvP on Observer Mode, particularly Heroes' Ascent. I focused on obtaining enough knowledge to be a caller in Heroes' Ascent battles and have recently succeeded with my guild when we captured the Hall of Heroes multiple times. I try many different things, including our famous Ranger spike, though I strongly believe that the balanced and hex-pressure builds are the most efficient setups to hold the Halls. When arranging teams, I first look at how each person understands the build, rather than how many fame points they have farmed.
Why I Joined: I came to SoT from War Project [WaR]. Besides cyber-gaming, I've got a passion for swimming, so I can proudly state that the HoH drops aren't the only rewards I've had the pleasure to collect. I've taken a few breaks from GW, but I always come back, because of the friends surrounding me and the wish to keep the game real. Plus, you just can't deny the fact that it rocks!
Handle: Far Sa (Alexander)
Location: Moscow, Russia
Gaming Background: Heroes of Might and Magic III, Guild Wars.
PvP or PvE: I'm usually PvPing in GvG, Heroes' Ascent and 4v4 arenas. Nevertheless, I enjoy difficult Hard Mode missions such as Thunderhead Keep or Hell's Precipice.
Favorite Profession: Monk, another Monk, and Monk again. Imagine them dancing around the fire. I've been the lead healer of the team during the GvGs we played in the beginning of the last year. Briefly, this means I'm always going with the attack group and am greatly responsible for the outcome of what the main part of the crew does.
Why I Joined: I simply like SoT's outlook on online things and believe we've got a bright future, such as the celebration of 10 years of the clan in May of 2008 here in Moscow. If you're interested in joining, chat with our officers, and who knows—you might be the next member of the team.
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