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kamimitsu
06-09-2009, 01:02 AM
As a die-hard rogue fan, I'm sometimes saddened that there is no reason to go beyond Mechanic I. Let's be honest and say that killing monsters is really what this game is about and what people are looking in a character build. Let's further be honest and say that Smite Construct is next to useless, and having Mechanic Skills brings nothing to all but a handful of quests (and even then, it's not much). I've been thinking about that recently, and something that just came to mind in another thread seemed like it could warrant full discussion here. Why not look at an offensive Mechanic? Some of the systems (and code) are already in the game, I'd imagine. Here are some things to consider for Mechanic I and beyond.

Mechanic I: In addition to current benefits, you receive the Set Traps ability (5 per rest, additional uses and/or power based on enhancements).
Set Traps: You can set a trap (similar to Fire Trap, or other symbol spells) that deals 1d6 per rogue level to enemies within its range (1 shot). You may choose its elemental property (fire, sonic, electric, cold, acid).


Mechanic II:In addition to current benefits, you receive the Reverse Trap ability. Also, your Set Traps inflict an additional 1d6 per 3 rogue levels.
Reverse Trap: If your Disable Device check passes by a margin of 5, then the trap no longer inflicts damage to your party, but will instead inflict damage to enemies.


Mechanic III: In addition to current benefits, you receive the Enhance Trap ability. Also, your Set Traps inflict an additional 1d6 per 3 rogue levels and you may choose Force as a damage type for your traps.
Enhance Trap: Enhance Trap: If your Disable Device check passes by a margin of 10, then the trap no longer inflicts damage to your party, but will instead inflict double damage to enemies.

The Reverse Trap and Enhance trap ability would be "always on" and any trap reversed or enhanced would still count toward the "Traps Disabled" number at the end of a quest.


My numbers might be kinda off, but it seems like a good start. I couldn't decide if Mechanic II and III should grant the extra 1d6 for every 2 or 3 rogue levels. 2 seemed like a bit much, as a 20th level Mechanic would have 40d6 in damage for a 30 ft radius 5 times per rest. I was trying to compare that to a fireball or like. 15d6 (maximized and empowered) is 37d6 (I think?). 3 would make a 20th level Mechanic do 32d6, which seems more in line. It also makes 18/2 builds much more appealing (dunno if that's a good thing).

Alternately, instead of increasing damage, the option of adding effects (paralysis, pain, stunning, blindness etc.) might also be viable. Mechanic II: Your Set Traps can produce 1 additional effect from the following list (pain, fear, persuasion) DC is 10+Rogue Levels+DEX modifier. Mechanic III: Your Set Traps can produce 1 additional effect from the following list (stunning, blindness, weakness) DC is 10+Rogue Levels+DEX modifier.

Significant EDIT: I did not make it apparent, but the intention was for these traps to be able to be set at range just as a symbol spell would. In terms of gameplay, it would act like a grenade that the rogue places over near the mobs. As they aggro and move toward the party, the bomb goes off. This version of a Mechanic would be a Jack-of-all-Trades MacGyver type. "Need a firebomb, I got it. Need an acid grenade, got that too! Need a flashbang? Yep, two of those in here. Concussion grenades? I think I have one left!"

SimVerg
06-09-2009, 01:31 AM
Give it a "Play musicbox" clicky that lets the rogue grant the party a 1/2(WoM I) 2/3(WoM II) 3/4(WoM 3) morale boost to atk/dmg for 4 minutes and uses a skill boost.

kamimitsu
06-09-2009, 01:42 AM
Give it a "Play musicbox" clicky that lets the rogue grant the party a 1/2(WoM I) 2/3(WoM II) 3/4(WoM 3) morale boost to atk/dmg for 4 minutes and uses a skill boost.

Interesting, but it sounds very Bard-ish. I'm thinking that Traps is really the way to go (both for flavor, and uniqueness).

baddax
06-09-2009, 02:36 AM
What about a Set trap enhancement similar to say fire trap spell, just give them some different options.

kamimitsu
06-09-2009, 02:56 AM
What about a Set trap enhancement similar to say fire trap spell, just give them some different options.

That's pretty much what I was going for, but something that actually does a bit of damage. 1d4 +20 is woefully inadequate. Granted, my suggestion above is probably overkill... but then again, I've always found that if you ask for something ridiculous first, then by the time compromises have been made, you end up with something closer to what you really wanted.

SimVerg
06-09-2009, 03:07 AM
The problem with any implementation of set traps is that it will either be pretty much worthless because it's a once/fight power(any number of factors could cause this but the most obvious would be a setup time) or not true to the underlying idea due to its practical use as a clicky attack.

edit: I should point out just how not ridiculous 32d6 dmg is. A 19 rogue does 10d6 base SA dmg and attacks around 3.5 times/sec while hasted.

Aranticus
06-09-2009, 03:15 AM
actually thats still some pretty tame damage. the damage death with should be that or whatever will be death to us, whichever is higher

even so, the main problem is not with the damage but rather, who will find the time to drag mobs back to set of the trap? given current preoccupation with time spent, i can safely say, most are still not going to use the traps

SableShadow
06-09-2009, 03:19 AM
even so, the main problem is not with the damage but rather, who will find the time to drag mobs back to set of the trap? given current preoccupation with time spent, i can safely say, most are still not going to use the traps

That's the way I lean...I'd rather see Smite Construct get some kind of buff, and extend its use to corporeal undead. Or cross Mechanic into Artificer a little, and give the PrE a selection of buffs they can apply to their party. Or both.

Aranticus
06-09-2009, 03:34 AM
i wouldnt say buff or anything like that but think computer hack! how abt expending a boost and get a free construct say iron golem for X mins. also have a stun construct ability PLUS use DD on the stunned construct and voila! a new friend!

Borror0
06-09-2009, 03:46 AM
Let's further be honest and say that Smite Construct is next to useless
I suggested, a while ago (http://forums.ddo.com/showthread.php?p=2052078#post2052078), to add enhancement lines that allow rogues to land some sneak attack damage on undeads and constructs, and to then make the one that apply to construct cheaper for Mechanics. The construct one would probably be redesigning Rogue Wrack Construct into something useful.

Then, changing Smite Construct would be a good idea and/or adding a passive bonus as well.

Possible changes to Smite Construct include (may pick more than one):

Temporary debuff that remove immunity to critical/sneak attacks
Small chance to land Smiting
Bigger base damage than Smite Evil
Chance of temporarily immobilizing the target

While damage to construct should not be one of the most powerful traits of a Mechanic, the current implementation of that ability is so minor that it's not worth using or worth considering, which is a bit silly.

[...] and having Mechanic Skills brings nothing to all but a handful of quests (and even then, it's not much).
That reveals a bigger underlying problem: skills are not very useful in DDO.

In my opinion, making of mechanics a unique PrE and allowing rogues to be something more than "a class with unstable DPS and Disable Device" passes by making skills more important than they are currently.

This means:

Adding new skills (which implies skill respec)
Improving current skills
Making skill score matter more


/trap suggestions
I think that CC and maybe also debuff would be more appropriated than more damage.

Not that there should not be damage traps as well but I think that CC traps are what would benefit rogues the most. Partly because rogues don't really lack damage and secondly because aggroing everything right away (which is probably what traps would accomplish) might be shooting yourself in the foot.

kamimitsu
06-09-2009, 03:56 AM
even so, the main problem is not with the damage but rather, who will find the time to drag mobs back to set of the trap? given current preoccupation with time spent, i can safely say, most are still not going to use the traps

Actually, my thought was that they would have a range similar to casting. I should have put that in the original post (and I am adding it now). So that you could set the trap *points* way over there as you would a spell. I understand that it isn't very realistic, but perhaps think of it like a grenade. Maybe I should change the name also.



I think that CC and maybe also debuff would be more appropriated than more damage.

Not that there should not be damage traps as well but I think that CC traps are what would benefit rogues the most. Partly because rogues don't really lack damage and secondly because aggroing everything right away (which is probably what traps would accomplish) might be shooting yourself in the foot.

Yeah... I listed some CC type traps that might be a viable alternative to straight damage. Having access to something similar to fireball and/or symbol spells might make Mechanic an interesting choice. Although I have no problem with adding to the Construct abilities, adding to Undead damage doesn't seem to be in the flavor of the Mechanic, at least in my opinion.

Also, as for skill scores mattering, I was hoping to address that (somewhat) with Reverse Trap and Enhance Trap. An elite trap that only affects enemies and deals double damage would be well worth using and bringing mobs back to.

Borror0
06-09-2009, 03:58 AM
Having access to something similar to fireball and/or symbol spells might make Mechanic an interesting choice.
Something similar to the symbols, yeah, it would. In fact, the symbols are a very good analogy when you think of it.

A fireball trap? Not so much. Does your rogue lack DPS?

kamimitsu
06-09-2009, 05:01 AM
A fireball trap? Not so much. Does your rogue lack DPS?

Nope... but a Mechanic based rogue might not be the best at DPS (which is the argument against going Mechanic: "you give up so much DPS by going Gimpy Mechanic!!") and this would hopefully bring it closer in line. And as I mentioned at the outset, most folks are only looking to see how much damage they can put out with a character. That's not a good thing, in my book, but it appears to be the nature of the game. Secondly, a Mechanic would have access to all of the elemental lines with equal efficiency (something that no class currently has: acid fog is not equal to firewall as we all know) and he would be able to maximize his damage for a group of mobs in almost every situation. This version of a Mechanic really would be a Jack-of-all-Trades MacGyver type. "Need a firebomb, I got it. Need an acid grenade, got that too! Need a flashbang? Yep, two of those in here. Concussion grenades? I think I have one left!"

I've been thinking about what you mentioned about drawing aggro with damage. That's a good point. At first glance, I thought an aggro-free version would be an interesting way to combat that (after all, if you come across a grenade or mine, you don't know where it came from), but obviously that could lead to some serious exploiting. I can't really think of a way around this, other than recommending Mechanics have a lot of diplo!

The above suggestions are really just to get discussion started, and look at a Mechanic that actually has Trap-like abilities (no offense to your suggestions Borror0, they're perfectly sound, but they just don't fit my view of what a Mechanic character would be). If damage isn't as popular as it seems (though it seems pretty darn popular) then perhaps going straight to Symbol-type CC traps is the way to go. In any event, I think adding some semi-arcane abilities to the Mechanic Class brings something very interesting and useful to the table that puts Mechanic back as a viable alternative to Acrobat and Assassin.

kamimitsu
06-09-2009, 05:20 AM
The problem with any implementation of set traps is that it will either be pretty much worthless because it's a once/fight power(any number of factors could cause this but the most obvious would be a setup time) or not true to the underlying idea due to its practical use as a clicky attack.

edit: I should point out just how not ridiculous 32d6 dmg is. A 19 rogue does 10d6 base SA dmg and attacks around 3.5 times/sec while hasted.

It's so hard to figure out how to balance DMG. You have fire-specc'd sorcs doing 37d6 x 1.4 damage with near abandon (spell points are pretty crazy on those guys). And then stupid spells like Fire Trap do d4+ 1/level.

If your numbers are correct (and I have no reason to doubt them), then each trap at level 20 would be akin to just less than 1 full seconds worth of Damage for a melee rogue (accounting somewhat for weapon damage and STR). He would only get this ability 5 times per rest and and often it would go off on only 1 mob (or not even be triggered).

Given that, I don't think the damage is really that far off. At any rate, it's just a suggestion for a starting point.

Aesop
06-09-2009, 05:32 AM
Along the lines of someones "computer hack" you could create a strike to Charm Construct

DC 10+Rogue Level + Int


You could also make the Set Trap ability have a duration effect like 6 sec per rogue level.

You could make the trap have a 0 Aggro generation so that it doesn't draw the Aggro of Mobs to the rogue


etc



Aesop

sephiroth1084
06-09-2009, 05:59 AM
I like the idea of being able to set traps, but not of having traps that deal damage, or at least not ones whose primariy/sole purpose is damage dealing--rogues do that well enough already.

What about a trap that:

-mimics Glitterdust
-knocks down all enemies in the area, as though tripped
-hamstrings all targets in the area, reducing their speed
-causes bleed (HP or Con lost over time)
-causes confusion, resulting in monsters taking a swipe at each other
OR
, resulting in a loss of aggro for everyone in the group
-paralyzes targets in the area as per Mass Hold Person/Monster

Some damage and/or poison could be added to these, but I think that these kinds of traps would be far more interesting than giving rogues symbols o' damage.

Borror0
06-09-2009, 10:51 AM
which is the argument against going Mechanic: "you give up so much DPS by going Gimpy Mechanic!!"
Not really.

When you look at the two other PrE:
Assassin give very little extra DPS. Certainly, not enough to warrant the AP expenditure alone.
Thief-Acrobat give no DPS to most rogue builds. Even though it is still a very popular PrE.

The reasons Mechanic is not popular is that it give you nothing worth mentioning.

And as I mentioned at the outset, most folks are only looking to see how much damage they can put out with a character.
Incorrectly worded. Combat is what this game is about and out of combat abilities have little value.

That said, damage prevention is highly valued. Especially among rogues, since it is more easy to draw too much aggro and die.

If damage isn't as popular as it seems
Let me explain why the conclusion that more damage has any worth is false, here.

In video games, DPS is greatly overpowered. The faster you can kill, the faster you can loot and gain XP. That, alone, has a lot of value. This leads to typical raiding strategy to consist of as much DPS as possible while ensuring a victory (ie enough tanking, healing/CC to avoid failure).

No matter how you look at it, the DDO rogue has the two most overpowered feature a character can have in DDO: unmatched DPS and Evasion. Those two are typically all a character needs to be powerful and thus also very popular. However, rogues still are a very unpopular class in DDO. Therefore, there must be something wrong somewhere.

The three most probable hypothesis are:

DDO rogues have too unstable DPS and that makes them unpopular
DDO rogues cannot deal as much DPS as theoretically possible
DDO rogues are too "squishy" and die too often therefore making them unpopular

In any case, there are two important things to notice: none of these are limited to Mechanics and none of these will be truly addressed by more DPS.

If you really think that the problem with Mechanic is more DPS, then I don't know what to say. I don't think I have ever heard a rogue complain about his DPS output being too low, unless it was about undeads or constructs.

kamimitsu
06-09-2009, 11:16 AM
If you really think that the problem with Mechanic is more DPS, then I don't know what to say. I don't think I have ever heard a rogue complain about his DPS output being too low, unless it was about undeads or constructs.

I suppose I should concede that. Rogues are unpopular because they are tricky to play (you can't just stand in fromnt of the guy and swing, among other things), not because of lack of DPS. You're right that DPS is not the answer (and I'd agree), but that doesn't mean that it doesn't "sell to the masses," so to speak.

It'd take me some time to rework the above with "status effects" only, which until I get a chance to soak up all the DDO Ebberon Unlimited stuff that just came out, I won't bother with. I'll hope to update this later with a rework, but I'll be discussing Ebberon Unlimited for the next few days, no doubt.

sephiroth1084
06-12-2009, 12:27 PM
Any thoughts on my suggestions?

kamimitsu
06-12-2009, 12:35 PM
Any thoughts on my suggestions?

Absolutely love the ideas. I've just been too busy in the Beta forums to spend any time revisiting this thread.

baddax
06-12-2009, 01:43 PM
That's the way I lean...I'd rather see Smite Construct get some kind of buff, and extend its use to corporeal undead. Or cross Mechanic into Artificer a little, and give the PrE a selection of buffs they can apply to their party. Or both.

/agree.

baddax
06-12-2009, 01:47 PM
I like the idea of being able to set traps, but not of having traps that deal damage, or at least not ones whose primariy/sole purpose is damage dealing--rogues do that well enough already.

What about a trap that:

-mimics Glitterdust
-knocks down all enemies in the area, as though tripped
-hamstrings all targets in the area, reducing their speed
-causes bleed (HP or Con lost over time)
-causes confusion, resulting in monsters taking a swipe at each other
OR
, resulting in a loss of aggro for everyone in the group
-paralyzes targets in the area as per Mass Hold Person/Monster

Some damage and/or poison could be added to these, but I think that these kinds of traps would be far more interesting than giving rogues symbols o' damage.


I like the hold monster idea, maybe a web type also.
Sound burst maybe also.
Blindness. either via glitterdust or target specific.

Trying to think or IRL traps and a similar crossover type spell/effect. All in all very good ideas.
/Rep for your post!

baddax
06-12-2009, 01:52 PM
DPS is where the game is currently at but is very boring IMO. More portal beating anyone? Ok ill just put auto attack on and BRB.

I personally would like to see more Tactical enhancements, but the game would have to evolve past being so DPS focused.

Draccus
06-12-2009, 01:58 PM
I like the idea of giving mechanics some form of SA damage on constructs. You could even take it a step forward and apply the assassin II concept to Mechanic II. A Mechanic II has the ability to assassinate a construct. Maybe he sneaks in and pulls out the thing's power supply or CPU or whatever's making it tick. Call it Deconstruct and make it work just like assassinate but only on constructs.

Borror0
06-12-2009, 02:02 PM
I prefer the name 'Terminate'.:p

baddax
06-12-2009, 02:07 PM
/agree