I really like the city changes for test 3 for stage 2. Stage 2 is much more epic now that it's not just zerg down the warlords. You are required to escort a warlord to the gates in order to win the stage. Stage will end in a draw if all the warlords are downed. We had some epic fighting in front of the Library in Altdorf. Big fun there. Stage 2 has been upgraded from lame to cool with that simple change.
It's going to be a tough fight, for both sides. If you want to play in the endgame, you better bring your A game. If you go in and lose, you're going to get a lockout. Yeah, you'll get crests, and you'll get the stuff eventually, but it'll take a LONG time if you don't learn to play as a team. If you go in with lockouts, you get 1 crest per stage, win or lose. I think it will still encourage defense since win or lose, you still get something.
I've found that I know how to play well with my guild/alliance, but not so well with others. There are multiple strategies that are viable, but they really need to be discussed beforehand. I am more used to single target spiking, but I ended up with a more AoE focused group. Tanks have 1 morale ability most of the time in my world which is Distracting Bellow. Using Raze normally ends up getting you shot with my alliance.
Another example, shields are anathema with my alliance. I know other alliance/guilds have tanks use shields. Our reasoning is that Challenge, Guard and Bellow are enough to get you to the front, so increasing our dps is more valuable than Hold the Line. (And in the great majority of cases, it is more than enough.)
I've rambled on enough. It's late, and I gotta work tomorrow. I haven't had much sleep lately. Floods in TN kept me away from my apartment this weekend, so I tried to sleep on a too small couch crashing with family up on the Cumberland Ridge. Yeah, that didn't work so well. 1.3.5. It's awesome. Go play it on PTS when the public events are happening. It's a little buggy, but it's big fun.