Over the years I've heard it all, "ALL KILL, NO SKILL!", "go back 2 tram", "1 v 1? that wasn't a 1 v 1, u had 2 pets!", "duel me! no pets!" It's a grand tradition in UO pvp to tell everyone that doesn't pvp exactly the same way you do that they aren't a "real" pvp'r, and no class of pvp'rs has been more subjected to this than pvp tamers. With that in mind, I'd like to point out why I think that a pvp tamer is not only a "real" pvp template but why they belong in pvp, and it would be a real loss to the pvp "scene" if they were ever to be removed in any way. Tamers belong in pvp because: - They are as balanced as any template out there. A tamer with a greater dragon is not an automatic kill machine. You ask any credible pvp'r on just about any template and they will tell you that they can beat your average tamer, 9 times out of 10. Even the dreaded "dread mare" templates are not a key to instant domination - they can be beaten, if you have skill, and you know what you are doing. - They have specific tactical uses in specific situations, as is the case with any pvp template. The various tamer templates are better at certain things, and worse at others. As is the case with any template. A tamer with a greater dragon may not be the best choice for "working" a spawn, but they can be invaluable as a tank when it comes time to tackle the champion. And you might say, "But that is pvm, not pvp." The simple truth is that champ spawns in Felucca are pvp arenas, from beginning to end, and are far more "real" in terms of pvp than most of the fun and frolic that goes on at Yew gate, because the stakes, in game terms, are "real". The pvm aspect of a champ spawn is a very big part of the pvp that goes on there. Good pvp'rs will use the spawn, including the champ, in all kinds of interesting and creative ways. - It takes just as much skill to play a pvp tamer effectively as it does any other pvp template. Now you could start nit picking and arguing pvp semantics and talk about how the "pure mage" takes more skill than any other template, etc. and ad nauseum, but the truth is it takes skill to play any pvp template. For some the learning curve isn't as steep as others, and for some it is a bit easier to get lucky kills at lower skill levels, but they all take practice, and skill to play well, even the "op" "fotm" templates that have been cycled through throughout the lifespan of the game take skill to play well. I can tell you from experience, and a lot of it, that my mage tamer is without a doubt the most complex, and interesting template that I play in pvp, of all of the various templates I have tried in that context. - They are fun. They are fun to play, and they are fun to play against. I've had this discussion with an old adversary who has become a friend, and he has told me on more than one occasion how playing against me in the old days was a bit like playing a game of chess. I have had battles that have lasted half an hour or more, that were just pure mad fun, from beginning to end, for both myself and my opponent. And personally, I love playing against tamers, win or lose. A well played tamer is a challenge to play against, and not just an irritating, annoying challenge, but a fun, "edge of your seat" adrenalin rush - the way the best pvp experiences always are. They are fun - the single most compelling argument why they should never be removed from pvp, and for me, the reason why I love both playing them, and playing against them. - But there is one more reason why they should never be removed from pvp and that is that tamers are part of what makes every part of UO, including pvp, utterly unique. There is no other MMO that has a tamer "class" of templates with as much variety and depth as UO has. After the friendships I have made playing the game, taming is the single biggest reason why I have loved UO for as long as I have. There is always something new to learn about the game, and about taming specifically, there are always new surprises, and after eight years, I still don't know all there is to know about being a tamer or a pvp tamer specifically, and I still make discoveries about taming that surprise me, or make me laugh, almost on a daily basis.