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  1. #1
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    Default A Proposal to Change SP Mechanics

    I think that it is fairly obvious that some classes have a better capacity than others to maintain their power capacity during quests / exploring new areas. For example, I choose to explore Thunderholmes with my lvl28 monk because I knew it would be extremely painful to have to do it with my casters; not knowing the area, nor the mob density turns SP management into a nightmare.

    In the case of new quests the same happens. A caster having to manage a limited SP pool is at complete disadvantage with respect to classes that have regenerating abilities. The monk is perhaps the top class at that, but archers excel at it too and to a certain extend a lot of melee based builds are a lot easier to play in this sense. This has turned casters into not rookie friendly classes. Worst even, it has turned them into powerful REPEAT players. If you know the quest well, you may excel as a caster. But that in itself seems a perversion (yet another) of the game, which has become a matter of repetition and memorization and less about "skill". (Not to mention the case of DC based casters, which is obviously way worse given the investment they require to work).

    My proposal is to go from the management of a limited pool of sp to managing the flow of SP. To do that, I propose to 1) Broaden the range of SLAs and 2) Introduce SP regeneration (this proposal contains original ideas from Nyft from Argonessen).

    1. "Innate casters" need to keep the advantage, but broaden the choice of SLAs a bit to fit more play styles and introduce useful SLAs for the rest.

    2. Sp regeneration:

    2.1. Echos of power stays constantly on. The rate varies according to the class. Innate casters have a larger rate of renewal.

    2.2. Study / meditation / seeking your inner power. Meditation like ability that regenerates slowly over time that allows you to bring back SP points much like a monk. Non innate casters should have an advantage here.

    Overall, with careful balancing, this would improve the experience for casters and put them at the same level as other classes in terms of joy to play (especially for new players).

    I do understand that simply giving casters more SP would unbalance them. What I am proposing is careful balancing, perhaps lowering the initial SP pool. The game changing proposal I sketched here is based on turning casting from a fixed pool management problem to an inflow / outflow one. I think that would be a way more enjoyable experience for both veterans and rookies.

    Please discuss.

  2. #2
    Community Member redspecter23's Avatar
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    You say more total SP would be powerful, but also propose "always on" echoes. That's basically just a higher SP total. The longer you play, the higher your effective pool of SP.

    I think if you were going to go with always on echoes, it might have to come with cooldown increases or reductions to your actual SP pool in order to be balanced. For instance, if you get back say 500 SP in 10 minutes with echoes, then if you reduce a caster's SP pool by 500, they are weaker for the first 10 minutes of the dungeon but for every proc that happens over the 10 minute mark, they have more virtual SP than they would otherwise have had. This could give a helping hand to longer encounters while not unbalancing shorter ones. Of course, you'd have to get all the variables lined up properly so it's not broken. It doesn't have to be 500 SP, 10 minutes or standard echoes regeneration. You'd have to tweak those numbers very carefully.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigErkyKid View Post
    Worst even, it has turned them into powerful REPEAT players. If you know the quest well, you may excel as a caster.
    Which kind-of makes sense, because there's only one creature more dangerous and more terrifying than a wizard: a wizard who's expecting you.


    But yeah, I like the idea. In a way it changes the game... but on the other hand, there's already ways to do it - the int yugo pots provide SP regen, you can call and re-call hirelings with DV, or get a pet bard... if someone builds or plans for it, they can do it already, so why not embrace it and get it more accessible*? Also, the HP regeneration items should be beefed up to match, possibly cutting the timers down depending through some melee enhancements. (Esp. Barbarian)

    *So the SP pots. If someone is willing to wait 10 minutes to regen SP they could get with a 25cent SP potion from the store, they weren't going to buy the potion anyways.
    In fact, this could even have the opposite effect, if people stop paying attention to their SP pool and are all like "I effectively have infinite SP, lol", and then one they're in a hurry and realize they don't know the first thing about SP management...

  4. #4
    Community Member Lonnbeimnech's Avatar
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    Or you could take 2 levels of fvs.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by redspecter23 View Post
    You say more total SP would be powerful, but also propose "always on" echoes. That's basically just a higher SP total. The longer you play, the higher your effective pool of SP.
    .
    Not if you limit the initial pool of SP.


    Quote Originally Posted by redspecter23 View Post
    I think if you were going to go with always on echoes, it might have to come with cooldown increases or reductions to your actual SP pool in order to be balanced. For instance, if you get back say 500 SP in 10 minutes with echoes, then if you reduce a caster's SP pool by 500, they are weaker for the first 10 minutes of the dungeon but for every proc that happens over the 10 minute mark, they have more virtual SP than they would otherwise have had. .
    I refer you to the comment above.

    Note that I am not suggesting just giving MORE sp for say shiradi sorcs to spam.

    Regarding the reference to just reward, I don't think it is the same. It lowers the SP expense, effectively extending your casting time, but by no means you can go on forever with it. There is some leakage.

    And for other ways to get back SP, I don't think they are mainstream nor a true change in mechanics.

    I am glad though I am not the only one who thinks that there could be more interesting ways to introduce fun SP management, other than "Yeah I run this quest 100 times already so I know where to spend".
    Last edited by BigErkyKid; 03-16-2014 at 10:46 AM.

  6. #6
    Bwest Fwiends Memnir's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigErkyKid View Post
    Please discuss.
    I think we need to improve the lot of melees before even considering changing up how spellcasting operates. Non-Monk melee needs a boost far more then casters, imho.


    And I'll toss in the obligatory, "Never happen because Turbine would sell less Mnemonic Potions," while I'm at it.
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  7. #7
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    Truth is, some melees also have action boost abilities that need to be refreshed. Those, IMHO, should also regenerate over time in some way. I would prefer it to be "lore based" (such as "studying" for wizards or meditation for monks) than just plainly a cooldown.

    But as much as I can agree with you regarding melees needing some balancing, I don't think it is incompatible with changing the mechanics of SP.

    Any thoughts on how to balance it / implement it? Right now it is a bit general, so I would be interested in knowing how you guys would go about it.

  8. #8
    Community Member badbob117's Avatar
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    Casters are in a great spot right now. They do not need more perks. They are already arguably the best at destroying content and some of the best at mitigating damage do to displacement. They can kite around and pretty much laugh at current game mechanics. They can also just chug pots to victory. Something a melee cannot really do. There is no pot that recharges all your main abilities as a melee.

    IMHO the specialists are the ones falling behind right now, The pally, The bard and the Rogues are in a rough spot and need some boosts, Even barbs and fighters could use some more perks. I am all for Letting action boosts recharge over time but i think it will take more then that to fix the bottom dwellers right now.

    As far as balance goes, They kinda messed up last enhancement pass and gave us to much for so little investment in multi-classing. Caps need a serious boost as well as higher tier enhancements for almost every class. Half the epic destinies are awful, They need a revamp. Some abilities need much longer cool downs. Others need to be lowered. Some need to be high level and class restricted. The enchantment pass kinda flipped a lot of this upside down. Balance has never really been Turbines fine point so god only knows where and what the game will morph into from here?
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  9. #9

    Default Like the creativity but not sure it is needed

    I'm not sure this is really needed. I have a few casters but don't really consider myself to be an expert in those classes. With that said, I have a level 21 Wizard and a level 10 Sorcerer and I don't seem to have any problems with running out of spell points. I also don't consider these characters to have the best equipment, so they could even have more spell points then they actually currently have. With spell point potions being available, echoes of power already in the game, and shrines (as well as those things others have mentioned such as hirelings) I just don't the necessity of needing a regenerative property for casters. I can see this causing a large in-balance the game. If something like this was implemented, it would really need to be tested to make sure game balance was maintained.

  10. #10
    Community Member Cleanincubus's Avatar
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    I'd prefer to see Mnemonic Potions being sold by an NPC in game. Even if they are just the Minor or Lesser versions. I don't see small boosts like 10-35 or 15-70 SP pots as game breaking. By the time you're level 20+, you'd have to drink roughly 50-100 potions to get all your SP back (figure 2,000+ SP for a level 20-ish character, with an average of 22 SP gained from drinking one Minor pot). If someone's willing to take that time in a quest to drink that many, I say let them. And/or add more items with Mnemonic clickies to them, whether it's straight SP or HP for SP (like the Twisted Talisman).

  11. #11
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    I just would like to clarify that this proposal is not meant to boost casters. Its meant to be a different twist on how to play them in a way I feel would be more interesting, enjoyable overall and accessible to people who do not know be heart all the quests.

    The big problem right now is that being a good caster is VERY linked to knowing the quests. Not knowing the way to tackle the enemies (which helps) or anything more skill based. Just pure simple knowing the quest from running it 200 times. In explorers, the same holds. Knowing where shrines are or simply TPing out of it.

    Hence the proposal. A different way to play them, which I think that correctly balanced would be more fun for players of all levels of skill.

  12. #12
    Death's Dominator Eth's Avatar
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    The new thunder-forged weapons have a pretty powerful SP regeneration ability (quite expensive though, since it's tier 3).
    50 extra SP every 45 seconds.
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  13. #13
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    Right, but what I mean here is a change in mechanics, not a very specific item providing some extra SP. I am glad that so far no one has said they dislike the change and most have said it would be interesting. Perhaps some of the game specialists can come give a hand fleshing this out.

  14. #14
    Community Member Coyopa's Avatar
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    Not signed. I remember having to meditate to regenerate spell points in EverQuest. That was the epitome of boredom (until they introduced mounts). A caster's life in EQ before mounts:

    1. Stand up.
    2. Cast spell.
    3. Sit down.
    4. Stare at spellbook.

    Eventually, they removed the fourth step and a while later they introduced mounts, which was a big improvement because then you counted both as sitting down and standing up at the same time. Honestly, I am not sure why they didn't just get rid of the whole ritual of sitting down instead of just introducing mounts.

    This game is balanced around having to rest at shrines to regain your spell points and that is not a bad thing.

  15. #15
    Death's Dominator Eth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coyopa View Post
    This game is balanced around having to rest at shrines to regain your spell points and that is not a bad thing.
    Agreed.
    But rest shrines aren't balanced in all quests.
    There are quests with a shrine overkill (Fear Factory) and others that totally lack shrines (DQ1).
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    I am aware that the game is balanced around shrines as it is. However I argue that this is something that could be improved upon. Balancing around shrines greatly favors those who have played the quests a thousand times. I know exactly the layout of the quest and I can plan ahead.

    Balancing around the inflow / outflow of SP seems way more interesting to me, specially now that the game seems to be placing more emphasis on semi-random instances, like Thunderholmes.

    I do not support the introduction of silly mechanics like having to rest after each spell. I gave the monk comparison because I feel it should be along those lines. Meditation is NOT spammed. Nor the epic ability to regain Ki.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigErkyKid View Post
    I am aware that the game is balanced around shrines as it is. However I argue that this is something that could be improved upon. Balancing around shrines greatly favors those who have played the quests a thousand times. I know exactly the layout of the quest and I can plan ahead.

    Balancing around the inflow / outflow of SP seems way more interesting to me, specially now that the game seems to be placing more emphasis on semi-random instances, like Thunderholmes.

    I do not support the introduction of silly mechanics like having to rest after each spell. I gave the monk comparison because I feel it should be along those lines. Meditation is NOT spammed. Nor the epic ability to regain Ki.
    Fantastic idea - what we need is a greater emphasis on systems changes and less on content. We need DDO to be exactly like it has been for the past year and a half. No end game, more systems changes!*


    * this message brought to you by every other MMO in competition with Turbine, and the letter 'e.'

  18. #18
    Community Member Thrudh's Avatar
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    SP Management is an important part of being a caster... And there's plenty of shrines. I had zero problems in Thunderholme explorer area or the Haunted Halls quest on my first run through... There's a ton of shrines in both of those... And if you're exploring something for the first time, and you're worried about SP, go in on normal, and shrines RESET.

    There's no need for any change.
    Quote Originally Posted by Teh_Troll View Post
    We are no more d000m'd then we were a week ago. Note - This was posted in 10/2013
    Quote Originally Posted by Eth View Post
    When you stop caring about xp/min this game becomes really fun. Trust me.
    Quote Originally Posted by TedSandyman View Post
    Some people brag about how fast they finished the game. I cant think of a stupider thing to brag about. Or in this game, going from level 1 to level 30 in two days, or however long it takes. I can't even begin to imagine what drives a person to think that is fun. You are ignoring all of the content and options and going for sheer speed. It is like going to a museum and bragging about how fast you made it through. Or bragging about how fast you finished a good steak.

  19. #19
    Community Member Thrudh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Memnir View Post
    And I'll toss in the obligatory, "Never happen because Turbine would sell less Mnemonic Potions," while I'm at it.
    Other than raids (which are a special kind of challenge), Turbine has never pushed buying SP pots via quest design... They are quite generous with the shrines, and the latest enhancement pass has given most classes a good amount of extra SP to boot.

    Let's keep our Turbine bashing accurate.
    Quote Originally Posted by Teh_Troll View Post
    We are no more d000m'd then we were a week ago. Note - This was posted in 10/2013
    Quote Originally Posted by Eth View Post
    When you stop caring about xp/min this game becomes really fun. Trust me.
    Quote Originally Posted by TedSandyman View Post
    Some people brag about how fast they finished the game. I cant think of a stupider thing to brag about. Or in this game, going from level 1 to level 30 in two days, or however long it takes. I can't even begin to imagine what drives a person to think that is fun. You are ignoring all of the content and options and going for sheer speed. It is like going to a museum and bragging about how fast you made it through. Or bragging about how fast you finished a good steak.

  20. #20
    Community Member Singular's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thrudh View Post
    SP Management is an important part of being a caster... And there's plenty of shrines. I had zero problems in Thunderholme explorer area or the Haunted Halls quest on my first run through... There's a ton of shrines in both of those... And if you're exploring something for the first time, and you're worried about SP, go in on normal, and shrines RESET.

    There's no need for any change.
    Compared to a bunch of years ago, I feel like I'm cheating, to be honest. There are so many shrines, you can just open up with the dps - except for a few key quests, on EE, where the baddies are hp bags.

    Running Von 3 EH a few months ago, on my pure sorc, a guy writes into chat "shouldn't we let the melee get a kill in. With the reduction in XP now, of course, there's no reason to run it on less than EE.

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