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  1. #1
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    Default Every champ should have a buff or debuff aura

    I think the champ mechanic is not fulfilling its purpose right now of providing increased challenge. Champ mobs are basically just trash mobs that take two extra hits and drop rems. They're not a challenge, they're a bonus.

    I think if champs not only boosted themselves but everything around them, they'd be closer to actually moving the needle for players, forcing them to react and modify their behavior. And that would become even more acute in higher difficulties where champs are more prevalent, as it should be, since their auras would stack - discouraging zerging or herding.

    They should be strong enough that one alone makes a difference, and two or three could turn the tables - thinking like +20% damage, +50 prr or mrr, +15% speed, +50% max hp, stacking bleed on hit, -100% fort, 25% deflect arrows, 20% kd-on-cast-guard etc. Some general, some more or less deleterious depending on your playstyle.

  2. #2
    Community Member PpalP's Avatar
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    NO!

    I don't know in what difficult do you play, but I and my friends are playing Heroic R6/R7 and champs can one-shot you (even normal trash can ignore 200% fortification in a level 10 quest); Ghostly & Blur doesn't work on R4+. spells don't land properly, a normal fight can be a wipe for a Lag Spike..... seriously, I don't know why do you want to add another aura for more lag.

    I can recommend that if a quest is too easy for you, just raise the difficulty, more skulls, or do it under level. But if you're an uber completionist with a ton of reaper points, etc, well, you win DDO! make an alt or something : )

  3. #3
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    I have too much $$, please raise the prices on food and utilities for everyone.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by droid327 View Post
    I think the champ mechanic is not fulfilling its purpose right now of providing increased challenge. Champ mobs are basically just trash mobs that take two extra hits and drop rems. They're not a challenge, they're a bonus.

    I think if champs not only boosted themselves but everything around them, they'd be closer to actually moving the needle for players, forcing them to react and modify their behavior. And that would become even more acute in higher difficulties where champs are more prevalent, as it should be, since their auras would stack - discouraging zerging or herding.

    They should be strong enough that one alone makes a difference, and two or three could turn the tables - thinking like +20% damage, +50 prr or mrr, +15% speed, +50% max hp, stacking bleed on hit, -100% fort, 25% deflect arrows, 20% kd-on-cast-guard etc. Some general, some more or less deleterious depending on your playstyle.
    I think the concept is fine on 2 major conditions.

    1) Lag: It would have to be lag free, which would be tough to say the least.

    2) Powerful together, weak alone: If you do this, make the aura the only thing the champion has, outside of maybe a bit more health. That way, they are tough in groups, but you remedy the issue of walking around a corner and get one-shot by a champ mob's magic missiles and their flat added spell damage.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stravix View Post
    I think the concept is fine on 2 major conditions.

    1) Lag: It would have to be lag free, which would be tough to say the least.

    2) Powerful together, weak alone: If you do this, make the aura the only thing the champion has, outside of maybe a bit more health. That way, they are tough in groups, but you remedy the issue of walking around a corner and get one-shot by a champ mob's magic missiles and their flat added spell damage.
    How about both?
    Give us more champion types, some of which should be killed first, others which are bulky targets you should burst down after their allies are taken care of.
    Hey, while we're at it, also give us mini Vengeance Reaper-types of champions, whose death is a boon on all their allies, or that do something to the person that kills them.
    Enthusiasm enthusiast enthusiast.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seph1roth5 View Post
    I have too much $$, please raise the prices on food and utilities for everyone.
    Quote Originally Posted by PpalP View Post
    NO!

    I don't know in what difficult do you play, but I and my friends are playing Heroic R6/R7 and champs can one-shot you (even normal trash can ignore 200% fortification in a level 10 quest); Ghostly & Blur doesn't work on R4+. spells don't land properly, a normal fight can be a wipe for a Lag Spike..... seriously, I don't know why do you want to add another aura for more lag.

    I can recommend that if a quest is too easy for you, just raise the difficulty, more skulls, or do it under level. But if you're an uber completionist with a ton of reaper points, etc, well, you win DDO! make an alt or something : )
    Actually this is WAI The whole point of the suggestion is to raise the overall challenge level after all, so yes, I expect this would lead to a recalibration of everyone's expectations/entitlements regarding difficulty. I dont think this is a bad thing. For one, it restores a bit of definition between Normal and Hard, for newer players. For two, for vets it restores Reaper to a proper scaling between "gotta keep your head on a swivel" at R1 to "bat-p0()p insane impossible" at R10...and that's how I think it should be, Reaper should be measured by how close you can get to R10, not how fast you can get through R10, because then there's always another step to work towards. And compressing the difficulty scatter like that will have a beneficial effect for grouping, too.

    The fact that you suggest its even possible that a player can be "done" and have outgrown the game entirely should be a huge red flag that this kind of recalibration is necessary.

    This isnt an uber player being elitist and forgetting the plight of the n00b, either. I'm a casual soloist, not even single completionist. This is actually an anti-elitist suggestion, because I get tired of seeing all the power creep, the Reaper-as-default expectations, and knowing how much that hurts the game's growth in the long term and how it exacerbates the power gap for newcomers. And also how its progressively devaluing tactical builds in favor of "just do mass DPS", and how that's narrowing viable build diversity.

    I dont suggest this in a vacuum either. My expectation is this rebalance/recalibration will open up the playbook for devs a little more going into the future, let them design quests with more depth, let them offer higher rewards for commensurate challenge, let them loosen up the axle on the various hamster wheels because the game itself slowed down a step or two. Its a lot harder to balance things when they're moving at breakneck speed, like we are right now.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stravix View Post
    I think the concept is fine on 2 major conditions.

    1) Lag: It would have to be lag free, which would be tough to say the least.

    2) Powerful together, weak alone: If you do this, make the aura the only thing the champion has, outside of maybe a bit more health. That way, they are tough in groups, but you remedy the issue of walking around a corner and get one-shot by a champ mob's magic missiles and their flat added spell damage.
    Yeah that was the one major problem I could think of...we know aura effects have been an issue with server load before. That's why I posted this as a Discussion more than a true Suggestion

    Though honestly, if I were the devs, I'd be comfortable saying "Hey, if you drag 8 packs together into one room and the champ auras lag you out and you die, that's on you. That's not an intended style of play, and we arent going to expend resources to better facilitate it. Dont zerg and it wont be a problem."

    And yeah I'd be fine with taking away some of their personal bonuses, or at least tailoring them to dovetail better with the aura model - ones like True Seeing or Unyielding Sov might still be tenable, things like Cruelty DOT or Stone Guard defense might need to metamorphize into aura form, with a subsequent reduction in numerical potency. But clearly the individual Champ bonuses dont make that big a difference, outside of maybe high Reaper like the other guy pointed out - but even then, pretty much any trash mob there can two-hit you, so the current iteration of champs still isnt really making that big a difference, they're still just "slightly bigger mooks".
    Last edited by droid327; 01-21-2021 at 02:10 PM.

  7. #7
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    Please, no.

    While some perfectly-tuned melees with a jillion reaper points, a flavor-of-the-month build and all the bells and whistles can solo R10, the vast majority of melees cannot. While Barbarians and Paladins can survive several hits in mid- to high-skull reaper, many cloth / light armor builds can't take more than a few.

    Melees already play the "high risk, high reward" game in reaper because it's so much easier to get hit. Champ auras would affect them disproportionately, especially sub-29 when there are fewer gap-closers and less AOE CC. Even 29+, many builds can't pull off a workable Dire Charge DC, and this change would further narrow the meta of competitive melee builds

    In a perfectly-balanced party or static group, maybe this makes sense. But I rarely step in above r3 during heroics and this would knock that down a few stages. More importantly, it would peanut-butter the player base farther across difficulties, as H and E would also become less accessible

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xgya View Post
    How about both?
    Give us more champion types, some of which should be killed first, others which are bulky targets you should burst down after their allies are taken care of.
    Hey, while we're at it, also give us mini Vengeance Reaper-types of champions, whose death is a boon on all their allies, or that do something to the person that kills them.
    I like these too - aura effects dont have to be limited to what Champs already do, and yeah absolutely they can be buff-on-kill as well as buff-while-still-alive. The point is to get players to pay attention and react, rather than simply bulldoze through everything with OSFA DPS buttons, and Diet Vengies (and Despair and Doom, maybe limited to Elite+) is a perfectly good way to better accomplish that.

    I'll just say that I wouldnt make the "bulky targets" just naked sacks of HP either, I'd still give them an aura to boost the trash around them...otherwise you're in the situation we're in now, where you just focus on the biggest guy with your AOE, and ignore everything else since they'll just die from the splash damage anyway by the time the big guy dies. But their aura would be relatively weaker than other champs, because its designed to stay active for longer.

    I would, however, make sure that the "sack of HP" champs werent innately immune to IKs, because I think - while not turning it completely, or arbitrarily, into a rock-paper-scissors setup - different playstyles should be much more useful/convenient against certain Champ setups, thus rewarding diversity in a party, without necessarily requiring it.

  9. #9
    Community Member PpalP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by droid327 View Post
    Actually this is WAI The whole point of the suggestion is to raise the overall challenge level after all...
    The problem with that idea is the unbalance. If you want the devs to make Reaper harder there are easier ways, like each skull decrease the things that make R10 easier for uber players. I mean, from R3 and beyond (to make an example), mobs could be immune to stun, hold, frog, freeze, or anything that can stop a mob from doing damage.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by droid327 View Post
    ...discouraging zerging or herding.

    They should be strong enough that one alone makes a difference, and two or three could turn the tables - thinking like +20% damage, +50 prr or mrr, +15% speed, +50% max hp, stacking bleed on hit, -100% fort, 25% deflect arrows, 20% kd-on-cast-guard etc. Some general, some more or less deleterious depending on your playstyle.
    everything you just described is already provided in the form of r7+. no need to go fiddling with any non reaper mechanics. just up the skulls and you're there.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by PpalP View Post
    The problem with that idea is the unbalance. If you want the devs to make Reaper harder there are easier ways, like each skull decrease the things that make R10 easier for uber players. I mean, from R3 and beyond (to make an example), mobs could be immune to stun, hold, frog, freeze, or anything that can stop a mob from doing damage.
    The thing I dislike most about Reaper, though, is how it channelizes you into Reaper-specific builds. This would just be exacerbating that problem, because then there'd be a meta filter for Reaper-viable builds, and then another one for high-Reaper-viable builds. I dont want even more people being excluded from content because they're building around mechanics that get arbitrarily penalized or disallowed in Reaper.

    Creating variable tactical challenges (rather than simply numerical force or arbitrary changes in how the rules work) forces you to adapt your gameplay, not just your build. Reapers themselves are a good example of this - if anything I'm just extending this well-proven approach to all difficulties.

  12. #12
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    It's been said, but let me pile on:

    Quote Originally Posted by PpalP View Post
    a normal fight can be a wipe for a Lag Spike..... seriously, I don't know why do you want to add another aura for more lag.
    Quote Originally Posted by Stravix View Post
    Lag: It would have to be lag free, which would be tough to say the least.
    Quote Originally Posted by droid327 View Post
    we know aura effects have been an issue with server load before.
    I don't object to requiring thought and upping challenge, but the lag issue is far more important than using auras in particular to address challenge. Auras bad; find another way!
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seph1roth5 View Post
    I have too much $$, please raise the prices on food and utilities for everyone.
    /signed

    (note - not /signed on OP. Just /signed on the increasing prices of food and utilities)
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  14. #14
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    The problem with buffing is it immediately leads to additional power creep or a simply reformulation of builds, rather than in-game strategy, based on maximum buff measuring. You can't balance R10 combat when most of the game is being played on spreadsheets.

    However, if Champs affected scaling is based on coordination speeds and mob attack/defense options, well then things get much more interesting faster. Mobs already communicate based on tremor-sense (iirc). What if they scaled communicated on aggro versus their designation of the greatest coordinated threat if a particular champ was present? The higher the R-level, the faster and more consistently the more likely a champ using grouping aggro coordinates mobs to focus on a limited number of player characters to focus attack. By the same token, mobs should be increasingly afforded player type abilities are the scale increases.

    Most players would loose their bowels if a champ cut loose with a dire charge on them, same with manyshot, same with a coordinated spell debuff followed by spell attacks, or even spell buffs/protections that eliminate most distance threats.

    DDO has more than enough in game context abilities that could be randomly applied to mobs/champs at generation, and based on behind the scenes combat log behavior analysis, even re-tuned automatically, to create a situation where static king of the hill builds for high R, become a fantasy and players who want challenge are steered to look for balance and flexibility in combat capabilities across a party in order to attempt to survive R10.

    I do think its accurate to say R10 should from that start, have been a survival based setting where thriving is out of the question, but not because people run out of mana, or hp meatsacks take too long to beat down. They should fail often because the speed at which they have to identify from a much larger potential pattern of attacks in combat eliminates all of the cookie builds and only allows for situationally adaptable players to succeed, and only if some luck turns their way. You could trim the sails on the available options for mobs and the speed at which they communicate and so patterns to recognize drop and time opportunity to do so increases the as the R# drops.

    At the same time using offline combat data to make automated mob meta adjustments if play moves too sharply in any one meta direction. If suddenly ranged is all mobs see quest after quest for a few weeks, both generation and their randomly selected choices narrow in more closely to provide both defense and offense against ranged attacks until things swing back the other way, or too a balance. Ideally one reaches a sort of balance or detente where success becomes based on top players not telegraphing their play and using a mix of combat choices to overcome encounters instead of pre-selected defaults.

  15. #15
    Community Member Bjond's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by droid327 View Post
    I think the champ mechanic is not fulfilling its purpose right now of providing increased challenge.
    IMHO, Archeron, Beast, & Infernal with their ignore-all-fortification feature provide the biggest threat short of a doom reaper. When I'm on my high DPS, I one-shot those before everything else: champs then plagues then doom/etc. You can CC them or kill them. You can't even tank something that crits for 4K through whatever fortification your tank might have -- they cut down undead with 300+ fort in one shot.

    Of course, if you're running at "leveling" difficulties (typically just R1), you'll mow everything down so fast it won't have a chance to be threat. Same thing if you regularly run with high-DC instants, CC'ers, or DPS that focus the champs first (so you don't even realize the threat has been dealt with).

    I do think the entire champion mechanism is beyond cheesey, though. It's difficulty by ignoring game rules. It's what a bad DM does when he wants a tough/er fight and is too lazy to build it within the rules: "OMG, it's a Dragon! It can ignore your immunity to fear, knockdown, etc. etc.." Despite the cheese, I think champ threat is fairly well tuned. It's danm annoying to be one-shot by them now and then, but when it happens I usually kick myself for not noticing and taking them out rather than cursing the game itself.

    IMHO, it's not the champs that are failing, it's the entire binary nature of high reaper in the first place. Build your team well and it's a yawn. Forget something and you wipe faster than you can blink. The bread & butter of other MMOs lies in the struggle to succeed in game. DDO's lies in the struggle to build. After that, it's just win easy or die fast with little middle ground.

  16. #16
    Community Member redoubt's Avatar
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    None of this makes any sense unless the alerting and agro sharing systems are fixed first.

    1. See invis does not equal a high spot score.
    2. Reapers are not commanders of the mob groups. Reapers do what ever reapers do. If a reaper sees a party member and it wants to go attack them, it should not automatically pull every mob near it. (On the flip side, I think reapers seeing mobs go attack would cause them to go as well; but the mobs should not follow reapers around.)
    3. Characters that float above the ground should be immune to tremorsense.
    4. Untrained animal mobs should not communicate nor share agro with mobs not of the same type as them. i.e. A worg would alert a worg rider, but a bear, wolf, spider would not tell a nearby troll that something is going on.
    5. While agree that the ability to repeatedly pull a single mob out of a pack and kill it singly was silly, so is the current system where a single alerted mob can pull its group, the groups on either side of it AND the group upstairs around the corner! A good bluff or distract should be able to pull a single mob sometimes, sometimes they make an int or wis check and bring a buddy or two.

    I know some of you are bored with the game and want it to be "harder", but realize that without making the mobs more intelligent you are making it more boring for others. Can I build and cut down groups of bigger, higher hp mobs? Sure... but how does that make it more fun. You say you want to make it so we have to pay attention to how we deal with the reapers? Well, I'll tell you that right now, even vengence reapers are killed half the time on purpose in a group, because the agro systems and AI of the mobs make it not worth even attempting to separate them. Fix the AI, pathing, agro sharing etc and then this idea might have merit.
    Should a reaper see me? I think Death itself should have to make a spot check when I'm rolling up behind him. -- Krimsonrane

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by redoubt View Post
    None of this makes any sense unless the alerting and agro sharing systems are fixed first.

    1. See invis does not equal a high spot score.
    2. Reapers are not commanders of the mob groups. Reapers do what ever reapers do. If a reaper sees a party member and it wants to go attack them, it should not automatically pull every mob near it. (On the flip side, I think reapers seeing mobs go attack would cause them to go as well; but the mobs should not follow reapers around.)
    3. Characters that float above the ground should be immune to tremorsense.
    4. Untrained animal mobs should not communicate nor share agro with mobs not of the same type as them. i.e. A worg would alert a worg rider, but a bear, wolf, spider would not tell a nearby troll that something is going on.
    5. While agree that the ability to repeatedly pull a single mob out of a pack and kill it singly was silly, so is the current system where a single alerted mob can pull its group, the groups on either side of it AND the group upstairs around the corner! A good bluff or distract should be able to pull a single mob sometimes, sometimes they make an int or wis check and bring a buddy or two.

    I know some of you are bored with the game and want it to be "harder", but realize that without making the mobs more intelligent you are making it more boring for others. Can I build and cut down groups of bigger, higher hp mobs? Sure... but how does that make it more fun. You say you want to make it so we have to pay attention to how we deal with the reapers? Well, I'll tell you that right now, even vengence reapers are killed half the time on purpose in a group, because the agro systems and AI of the mobs make it not worth even attempting to separate them. Fix the AI, pathing, agro sharing etc and then this idea might have merit.
    1. Invisibility should be countered by in context counters true sight/glitterdust/debuffs/etc rather than letting mobs cheat. It's easy enough to force situations where players can't invis run to the end without going outside the rules.

    2. Reapers themselves should be reaped from the game. Champions would make sense to enhance. Reapers were just lazy mobs to begin with.

    3. One could also argue floating above the ground should prevent any sort of melee attack from being initiated if we're going to go the physics route. Also, getting hit by a melee while floating should send the player flying backwards assuming they aren't skewered

    4. I could see aggro being a pack behavior being a family thing for animals, but alerts should cross animals of a similar class (and would be roughly equivalent to how it works in the taxonomic sense). Thus a bear/wolf/worg would roughly alert each other, but not a spider and vice versa.

    5. If other elements were fixed there wouldn't be a need for large packs of mobs to begin with, in which case bluff actually becomes usable instead of being the slowest way to do anything.

  18. #18
    Community Member redoubt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by myliftkk_v2 View Post
    1. Invisibility should be countered by in context counters true sight/glitterdust/debuffs/etc rather than letting mobs cheat. It's easy enough to force situations where players can't invis run to the end without going outside the rules.

    2. Reapers themselves should be reaped from the game. Champions would make sense to enhance. Reapers were just lazy mobs to begin with.

    3. One could also argue floating above the ground should prevent any sort of melee attack from being initiated if we're going to go the physics route. Also, getting hit by a melee while floating should send the player flying backwards assuming they aren't skewered

    4. I could see aggro being a pack behavior being a family thing for animals, but alerts should cross animals of a similar class (and would be roughly equivalent to how it works in the taxonomic sense). Thus a bear/wolf/worg would roughly alert each other, but not a spider and vice versa.

    5. If other elements were fixed there wouldn't be a need for large packs of mobs to begin with, in which case bluff actually becomes usable instead of being the slowest way to do anything.
    Sounds pretty good to me.
    Should a reaper see me? I think Death itself should have to make a spot check when I'm rolling up behind him. -- Krimsonrane

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by redoubt View Post
    3. Characters that float above the ground should be immune to tremorsense.
    I imagine a wub-wub-wub floaty sound lol. Just getting louder as you float closer and quieter as you float away XD

    PM's Wraith form should go through doors (and probably walls too), but that's not very good for game balance lol.

    More realistically, you float by exerting some downward force that equals your weight, right? And it has to be proximity-based (think magnet and the world being a magnet) otherwise you could just float upwards/downwards as desired, no? Thus you're pushing the ground nearby you down (again think magnet) so tremorsense should see you as something like a beach ball you're standing on lol. You can't be weightless or you'd be immune to mundane physical versions of weapons, explosions, traps, etc (and could probs float upwards again).

    Think about like a helicopter, tremorsense might not see it directly but you'd notice one hovering just off the ground from the downdraft
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  20. #20
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    I love it.

    I'm too powerful. I am bloated with past lives and gear. Please make the game harder. But don't nerf anything, just add super champs or ghoulie reapers. How about a new REAPERX mode that is even harder and every mob is either a reaper or a champ. Or reapers that are champs, that would fix the problem.

    Champs and reapers are stupid add-ons that make no sense in the DND world.

    The game, if properly managed, should not need these kludges to make it challenging.

    Champs and reapers are a sure sign that the game power creep has advanced to the point that it is actually ruining the DND experience.

    The game has morphed into something that only resembles real DND.

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