This is very much a work in progress and will certainly require a lot of edits - many things have not been fully thought through and some things simply may not be appropriate. But have spent too long thinking about this so best to get it posted and then modify stuff later. Numbers are very much placeholder - some may either be too weak or stupidly powerful, so focusing on the concepts rather than numbers.
The warrior mesmer, which shuns deception and illusions preferring to directly enfold themselves with phantasmal energy and engage head on. Gain access to telekinetic Physical skills and build stacks of Phantasmal Armour, which can be unleashed in devastating burst attacks.
Reasoning (I like the symmetry):
Chronomancer ~ Mesmer/Necro (“light armour category”, support, offhand)
Mirage ~ Mesmer/Thief (“medium armour category”, damage, mainhand)
Occluder ~ Mesmer/Warrior (“heavy armour category”, control, two handed)
Primary feature: Phantasmal Armour
- Occluder does not create clones. Clones that would potentially be created by any skills or traits are immediately absorbed into the player as Phantasmal Armour, with a swirling pink visual effect (similar to Peerless Infusion effect) stacking in intensity with the number of absorbed clones.
- The clone counter is now the Phantasmal Armour counter (PA).
- Phantasms directly increase the counter once they despawn or are killed.
- Any clone generating traits or skills directly give Phantasmal Armour (eg Deceptive Evasion gives 1 PA after dodge, Signet of Illusions would give 1 PA every 10s and refresh all Burst skills on active, etc)
- Taking damage greater than 25% of the player’s maximum health pool will directly remove one stack of Phantasmal Armour (simulating a clone being killed).
- Each stack of PA provides 10% direct and condition damage reduction.
- PA stacks decay over time out of combat – losing 1 stack every 3 seconds.
For each stack of PA, the player’s auto attacks are directly augmented to simulate what clones may contribute on the field.
For example, Staff (this is by no means accurate, only to highlight that autos should scale with PA stacks):
PA 0 – normal auto attack
PA 1 – gains 1 additional stack of bleeding
PA 2 – gains 1 additional stack of torment
PA 3 – gains 1 additional stack of burning
And so on… Each weapon has a scaling auto attack damage based on the PA counter, direct and/or condition.
Core skill outliers, modified for Occluder only:
Sword 3 - changed into: mark your current position and teleport to your target, applying cripple and vulnerability. Swap to teleport back to your initial position, immobilising enemies around you and gaining 1 PA.
Mirror Images - changed into: break stun and gain maximum PA. 20s cooldown.
Core trait outliers (there are more, but will edit and list others after having given better thought to them), possibly modified for Occluder only, or changed for Core to function seamlessly. This is a big problem, as there are a few things that don't appear to work without some kind of change...
Sharper Images – applies directly to the player’s crits?
Empowered Illusions – applies directly to the player’s attacks, but reduced to 5% for Occluder.
New condition: Suppression
Suppression prevents boons from functioning in the same way as Resistance prevents conditions. If both are present on a player, the effects cancel out for the duration until one of them expires. Eg if a player has 2s resistance and 3s suppression, the first 2s will have no effect from either boon, and the final 1s will function with suppression once the resistance has expired.
Shatter skills are replaced by "Burst" skills that unleash stacks of Phantasmal Armour. Burst skills are not accessible with 0 PA (equivalent to no IP/Self Shatter).
F1 and F2 are unique for each mainhand and two handed weapon, similar to warrior burst skills, using large phantasmal models of those weapons to deal attacks. I don’t have ideas for all the weapons yet, so will only write it for Hammer. Each weapon could have unique benefits with F1 and F2, eg wider cleave, range, greater single target damage, more conditions, soft cc, etc. This means Greatsword, Staff, Sword, Scepter and Hammer all have unique F1 and F2. However, F1 is still the direct damage burst, and F2 the condi burst - to synergise with Core traits that may affect either F1 or F2.
- All F1 and F2 skill cooldowns apply over weapon swap, so using one will prevent use of another after weapon swap until the cooldown has refreshed.
- Any traits affecting Shatter skills directly apply to the relevant Burst skills only. Eg, Blinding Dissipation would apply to F2 on whichever weapon, Shatter Storm would apply to F1. As far as I know it is only Master of Fragmentation aoe F3 that may need specific attention with Disorient, maybe also reflect and Auspicious Anguish to trigger on F4 activation.
- Losing PA through taking 25% health damage is analagous to having a clone be killed, and has no other interaction with anything shatter related.
- Absorbing PA with Heal and Elite skills is not the same as spending PA on Burst (Shatter) skills. It would function more as if "killing" clones to fuel the skill, and as above would have no other interaction with anything shatter related.
- F1 (Hammer) – Psychic Impact: Unleash your PA into a Phantasmal Hammer and smash the ground in front of you, dealing damage. 0.5s cast time, up to 5 targets in a cone, 180 range. Damage scales with PA stacks. 10s cooldown.
- F2 (Hammer) – Ring of Bewilderment: Unleash your PA into a Phantasmal Hammer and spin around, confusing enemies. 0.5s cast time, up to 5 targets, full circle 180 radius. 1 confusion per PA stack. 20s cooldown.
- F3 – Disorient: Blast off your Phantasmal Armour in a pulse that moves outward, dazing targets in a line in front of you. (Master of Fragmentation turns this into a single PBAoE pulse) Instant cast with travel time, 600 range. +1s daze duration per PA stack. 30s cooldown.
- F4 - Mental Barrier: Project your Phantasmal Armour outward, blocking attacks and pulsing Resistance to allies and Suppression to enemies in the area (up to 5 targets). 1s per pulse to targets in the radius. Radius 240, duration 1s per PA. Instant cast. 50s cooldown.
Utilities – Physical Skills – with a telekinetic twist, they all feature pink glowing phantasmal effect (similar to Binding of Ipos). All physical skills, similar to weapon auto attacks, scale with higher PA stacks but can also be used with 0 PA for the baseline effect. Taking a lot of inspiration from crowd control Biotics and Force powers - think pink biotics! Elite absorbs PA stacks, the other utilities do not.
- Heal – Absorption: Shield yourself with phantasmal energy for 2 seconds. While Absorption is active, incoming damage heals you and does not deplete PA stacks. Instead, incurring greater than 25% of total health as damage while Absorption is active directly increases Phantasmal Armour by 1. For every stack of initial PA (prior to cast), increase Absorption duration by +1s. 25s cooldown.
Utility 1 – Grasp: Grasp your target in a field of phantasmal energy, slowing their actions. 2s Slow, Chill and Cripple, +1s for each initial stack of PA. 3/4s cast time, 900 range (visual animation of phantasmal hand and pink effect around target at range). 25s cooldown.
Flipover skill – Pull: pull your target toward you, range 600. Available for 2s after Grasp and +1s for each initial stack of PA (up to 5s access). 0.75s cast time. 25s cooldown after use, if used.
Utility 2 – Dispel: Punch forward with phantasmal energy, launching enemies in a cone. 600 range, launch 400 units, +100 units per initial PA stack. 3/4s cast time, 25s cooldown.
- Utility 3 – Fleeting Thought: Focus phantasmal energy to propel yourself towards a target at speed, stunning on contact. 0.5s windup cast time, 900 range, 1.5s stun on contact. +100 range and +0.5s stun for each stack of PA. 35s cooldown, reduced to 25s if hitting a target. Has travel time. (think Mass Effect - Biotic Charge, in pink)
- Utility 4 – Nova Transfer: Temporarily become immune to any disable effects on you (daze, stun, knockdown, float, fear, taunt etc…), jump up and slam a phantasmal fist into the ground, sending out a wave of phantasmal energy that removes and transfers all current disable effect on you to players hit by the wave (effectively a Stun Break). 0.75s cast time, up to 5 targets, 240 range, 30s cooldown. +120 range for each initial stack of PA.
- Elite – Final Form: Absorb all PA stacks and transform into a giant phantasmal juggernaut, gaining access to new skills (need to think this one through more, but essentially Rampage with mesmer flavour, and heavy cc potential). Duration 7s, +1s for each stack of PA absorbed. 180s cooldown? (depends on the effects).
Weapon – Hammer (unlike other weapons, Hammer does not summon a phantasm, instead transforming the player into a phantasm for the associated attack. Any traits applying to phantasms apply to the player in this case). Only skills 1 and 2 are intended for damage, as well as of course F1 and F2 burst skills.
- Auto – Psychic Strike/Blow/Smash: Strike your foe x3, final hit applies Cripple (2s). 3 target cleave. Does higher damage within 180 range on physical contact, but also deals reduced damage up to 480 range within a narrow cone in front of the player. Pink illusionary hammer visual effect extending up to the farthest target being hit. Prioritises closest targets.
- Skill 2 – Banish Construct: Focus phantasmal energy and charge to your target striking them twice, dealing damage and gaining 1 PA for each hit. 0.5s evade, leap finisher, 600 range, 10s cooldown (kind of a shorter range analogue to Fleeting Thought, just as on Mirage Axe 3 is analagous to Mirage Advance).
- Skill 3 - Mental Chains: Hold out your hammer and fire a beam of phantasmal energy, immobilising and crippling targets in a line (up to 5). 2s immobilise, 3s Cripple, 1s cast time. 900 range, 15s cooldown.
- Skill 4 – Phantasmal Vanguard: Transform into a Phantasmal Vanguard and knock down up to 3 targets in front of you. Gain 1 PA on transform end. 240 range, 2s knockdown. 20s cooldown. 0.25s transform time, 0.5s phantasm attack cast time.
- Skill 5 – Shockwave: Slam your hammer into the ground sending out waves of phantasmal energy that Cripple and Weaken enemies (2s per wave). The first wave also applies Daze (1s). 600 radius, 3 waves with travel time, 3/4s cast, 25s cooldown.
- Adept – Phantasmal Armour: clones created by you are immediately absorbed as Phantasmal Armour. Gain access to Hammer, Burst and Physical skills.
- Master – Mindfulness: Incoming control effects have reduced duration for each stack of PA on you. 10% reduced duration per PA stack.
- Grandmaster – Reinforcement of Superiority: Gain 1 PA whenever you disable a target (daze, stun, knockdown, pull, etc…)
Top line (control):
- Adept - Hammer Time: Hammer skills gain 20% reduced cooldown. Whenever you apply Cripple, also apply additional Slow (1s).
- Master – Food for Thought: Interrupting an enemy transfers conditions to them and applies Suppression. 2 conditions transferred, 1s Suppression.
- Grandmaster – Force of Will: Apply 3s Suppression when spending 3 PA on a Burst skill.
Middle line (defensive/utility):
- Adept – Shed the Shackles: Movement impairing conditions have reduced duration for each stack of PA. 10% reduced duration per stack.
- Master – Cocoon: Gain Barrier when you gain PA. 5s ICD (not sure about this one as the visual effects could be a mess).
- Grandmaster – All in the Mind: Health damage threshold for losing one stack of PA is increased to 50% (base is 25%, so now would only lose one PA if taking more than 50% of health as damage).
Bottom line (offensive):
- Adept - Disillusion the Maimed: Gain increased damage to enemies with movement impairing conditions (cripple, chill, immobilise) - 10% damage increase.
- Master - Battle Meditation: Physical Skills have 20% reduced cooldown, and their base effect is increased to that of having 1 PA (does not scale beyond 3 PA, so having 2 PA will effectively boost the physical skill to maximum).
- Grandmaster – Intensify: Phantasmal Armour increases weapon auto attack damage by a further 5% per PA stack.
Ok let me re-emphasise that a LOT of this is still work in progress - I'll certainly be editing to change things - but I want to get this out now and then think on it as maybe feedback will help refine some of the ideas.