On Power Creep (example: Holosmith) — Guild Wars 2 Forums

On Power Creep (example: Holosmith)

coro.3176coro.3176 Member ✭✭✭✭
edited November 19, 2018 in Engineer

Fundamentally, combat in this game is about Offensive, Defensive, and Utility skills/abilities/traits.

You win by using your Attack+Utility resources to damage the enemy while using your Defensive+Utility resources to prevent them from damaging you.

The better you match up your defense to the opponent's attacks, the better you will counter their damage. For example, you want to use a channeled block for a long attack like rapid fire instead of wasting 2 dodges. You want to use dodge for unblockable attacks. You want to use reflect on projectiles. You want to use reveal when your opponent stealths. Furthermore, you want to use your defense to counter the MOST damaging skills and MOST critical CCs that the opponent uses because you (unless you're a mirage..) don't have enough defensive resources to counter them all. It can be good play to take autoattacks to the face while saving dodges for big hitters (eg. deaths judgement).

These big hitters are often known as "must-dodge" (or block or invuln or cleanse or whataever) skills, because if you don't, you'll probably lose the fight.

That brings us to Holosmith. Holosmith has 3.5 must-dodge skills all on less than 15s cooldowns. let's go through them:

  • Holo Leap: 600 range leap and lots of damage. In PvP, this still hits for good damage every 2 seconds and keeps the holo stuck to you. In WvW, it hits for like 5-7k. The 2s (!!!) cooldown all but guarantees you can't kite them because they will always stick to you again with leap.
  • Corona burst: Counting this as 0.5 of a must-dodge skill. By itself, it's not going to kill you, but if you let this hit you, it grants the holo stability, which means you can't cc them as a counter to other damage. On top of that, it hits twice and grants them might. You probably want to use a defensive cooldown on this if you can afford it.
  • Photon Blitz: Not much to say. It's just lots of damage that you want to avoid.
  • Holo Shockwave: This is a 100% must dodge skill. If you get CC'd by this, you're going to get combo'd down. It does good damage and is a really long CC.

Phew. That's a lot to defend against. It's not impossible though. With careful play, you can do it. (eg. on my Engi, I'll swap to toolkit while the holo is in mid-air jumping to me with Holo Leap, then use Gear Shield to block Holo Leap and the first hit of Corona Burst. Then I'll dodge Shockwave and most of Blitz.)

However .. you have to keep in mind Holo gets all those skills for free with its elite spec. Now that I've wasted all my defense, they can just disable forge and play like a core engineer for a short time while it recharges. Meanwhile I've got no defense left and they have a full bar of weapon skills and utility skills. How am I going to defend against Overcharged Shot and Jump Shot when I spent all my defense on Photon Forge?

I just don't see how Holo can ever be balanced with Core Engi when it gets such ridiculous power and sacrifices nothing. The heat mechanic is not a downside. In fact it ends up providing almost as much as a free heal skill every 20s.

Comments

  • coro.3176coro.3176 Member ✭✭✭✭

    So what do we do about this?

    I recommend a few things:

    • Photon Forge is really powerful. Give it some kind of downside to its use - eg. no ability to reduce heat. If Holo has to weigh using powerful skills vs taking overheat damage, it'll actually be a trade off rather than free skills added to engi (let's face it. giving up a single toolbelt f5 skill is no tradeoff worth mentioning).
    • Alternatively, pull some of the power out of Forge to put it back on par with core weapons. Maybe reduce the range on Shockwave (600 units is REALLY far). Maybe increase the cooldown on leap, etc.
  • Fat Disgrace.4275Fat Disgrace.4275 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Make it so you can't use utility skills, huehue.

  • Vagrant.7206Vagrant.7206 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited November 20, 2018

    @coro.3176 said:

    I just picked Holo because I think it's the best example of pure power creep on an elite spec.

    But by your own admission, holo does give something up when compared to core -- its F5 skill. The F5 skills for engineer can be pretty potent (save orbital cannon). Sure, it's not a massive tradeoff, but the other examples you listed are debatable as well. I don't think you'd find most necros complaining about giving up Death Shroud in its current incarnation (huehuehue).

    In an ideal world, yeah, I'd like everything on par with core. Is that realistic to expect at this point? I doubt it. These elite specs are designed around their powercreep, and it's extremely hard to reverse once it gets going. The more reasonable approach, IMO, is to buff core stuff to at least be viable against elite specs, if not on par (see core thief S/D, core guard hammer for examples).

    The great god Lagki demands sacrifice!

  • coro.3176coro.3176 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited November 20, 2018

    @Vagrant.7206 said:

    @coro.3176 said:

    I just picked Holo because I think it's the best example of pure power creep on an elite spec.

    But by your own admission, holo does give something up when compared to core -- its F5 skill. The F5 skills for engineer can be pretty potent (save orbital cannon). Sure, it's not a massive tradeoff, but the other examples you listed are debatable as well. I don't think you'd find most necros complaining about giving up Death Shroud in its current incarnation (huehuehue).

    In an ideal world, yeah, I'd like everything on par with core. Is that realistic to expect at this point? I doubt it. These elite specs are designed around their powercreep, and it's extremely hard to reverse once it gets going. The more reasonable approach, IMO, is to buff core stuff to at least be viable against elite specs, if not on par (see core thief S/D, core guard hammer for examples).

    Sure. that's an option .. but I think that's difficult to do unless there is a "core traitline" that elite specs can't use which could be buffed to compensate. As it stands now, elite specs can pick and choose the best of core and it's difficult to create synergies that require three full core traitlines and can compete with the elite powercreep AND not make the elite powercreep worse. S/D thief and Core Guard are the exceptions, not the rule.

  • @Fat Disgrace.4275 said:
    Make it so you can't use utility skills, huehue.

    No class ever has to deal with that.... cries in reaper

  • @coro.3176 said:

    Edit: and to clarify, I want all elite specs nerfed down to core levels.

    Can we "nerf" DH up to core guard level?

  • Dace.8173Dace.8173 Member ✭✭✭✭

    I can't take a power creep argument that says Holo doesn't give up something and yet somehow wants to indicate that Mirage of all things gave up something to be more powerful than the rest of the game seriously. Holosmith may be strong but it is, by far, not the worst offender. You also seem to be really generous on what other Elites gave up to get their power. Spellbreaker gives up an Adrenaline bar for a full block/counter. Big loss there. Deadeye gave up stealing in order to gain a powerful one-shot move and perm-stealth. Another big loss there. Giving up Death Shroud is somehow a trade-off for Reaper Shroud? Everyone sees the Holosmith coming, yet a perm-stealthed thief sitting well outside the firing range of everyone but Ranger is somehow the lesser issue.

    As for bringing Elites down to core level, why? That's the selling point of Elites, they make you more powerful than you were beforehand. They are meant to be stronger than Core. That's what people want when they buy an expansion, they want the new toys to make them more powerful than before. Other games do this by raising the level cap. This game decided to keep its level cap and instead do Elites. No matter how you slice it though, people want this higher level of power.

  • I think Arenanet is already targeting the difference between core and elite specs.
    During the last few months, most skills of Firearms and inventions and some of explosions and alchemy were changed. Before there were traitlines with 2 useless traits in all tiers. Now you can even switch traitlines without losing a build's mechanic.

    For example, an anti-condi holosmith often takes invention and alchemy. You can switch alchemy for explosives for a damage increase in turn for the boon conversion and still remove the same condition. Or go to grieving stats, use firearms and solar focusing lenses and get a nice dual-damage build with still the same condition removal abilities. Or go to Tools for an SD variant for higher ranged&single target damage.

    In my opinion, also for other classes, is if all traitlines are equally strong in their field. Then the power creep should not be a problem anymore. Runes and sigils also got the power-creep update now. There are still some traits, skills, and buff-food untouched (supply crate itself, throw mine, soothing detonation, to list a few), but it's on a good way in my opinion.

    However, equalizing will always be prioritized on the elite specs, since they bring a large part of the money. ^^

  • Silinsar.6298Silinsar.6298 Member ✭✭✭
    edited December 4, 2018

    This seems to be more of a complaint about a specific match up than a comprehensive evaluation of how the power creep's hurting the game so you'd probably be better off just asking for advice.

    @coro.3176 said:
    Fundamentally, combat in this game is about Offensive, Defensive, and Utility skills/abilities/traits.

    You win by using your Attack+Utility resources to damage the enemy while using your Defensive+Utility resources to prevent them from damaging you.

    The better you match up your defense to the opponent's attacks, the better you will counter their damage. For example, you want to use a channeled block for a long attack like rapid fire instead of wasting 2 dodges. You want to use dodge for unblockable attacks. You want to use reflect on projectiles. You want to use reveal when your opponent stealths. Furthermore, you want to use your defense to counter the MOST damaging skills and MOST critical CCs that the opponent uses because you (unless you're a mirage..) don't have enough defensive resources to counter them all. It can be good play to take autoattacks to the face while saving dodges for big hitters (eg. deaths judgement).

    Okay, so here your problem already becomes apparent. You only think of defense to defend yourself. You should only ever only think to defend yourself when offense is not an option. Holo is susceptible to counter pressure, if you focus on defending yourself and do not pressure a Holo while it's most vulnerable you're playing into it's hands, because in the end your defenses will run out before a Holo's offensive capabilities do.

    @coro.3176 said:

    These big hitters are often known as "must-dodge" (or block or invuln or cleanse or whataever) skills, because if you don't, you'll probably lose the fight.

    That brings us to Holosmith. Holosmith has 3.5 must-dodge skills all on less than 15s cooldowns. let's go through them:

    • Holo Leap: 600 range leap and lots of damage. In PvP, this still hits for good damage every 2 seconds and keeps the holo stuck to you. In WvW, it hits for like 5-7k. The 2s (!!!) cooldown all but guarantees you can't kite them because they will always stick to you again with leap.

    Nope, leap's a must hit (in the best case with immob or CC) skill, not a must dodge skill. If the Holo's not already in melee range it's predictable and the holo doesn't have any stab from Corona yet because he's just closing in. Leap locks the holo in an animation that makes it unable to react to anything. Leap's one of the skills that makes Holo most vulnerable, frequently. If you hit it with a CC/immob you get free damage, the holo's stuck (open for more damage) and won't do any. It either has to wait and drop out of forge to get back to a set that has range pressure or continue efforts to close in (increasing heat which will limit what it can do at melee when it's finally there).
    About the CD and literally all other PF CDs: take heat into account. Very roughly (and with the passive heat gain during the usage) an AA chain is about 10%, same as #2 and #3, number #4 and #5 are 20+.

    • Corona burst: Counting this as 0.5 of a must-dodge skill. By itself, it's not going to kill you, but if you let this hit you, it grants the holo stability, which means you can't cc them as a counter to other damage. On top of that, it hits twice and grants them might. You probably want to use a defensive cooldown on this if you can afford it.

    This is actually what you really want to dodge if a holo's going into forge since it allows the holo to stick to you (and subsequently leap to you) without the risk of being CC'd and deal damage. If you can't dodge it at least try to get away fast to outrange the second hit and wait out the stab.

    • Photon Blitz: Not much to say. It's just lots of damage that you want to avoid.

    It's chunk of damage yes, but can be utilised against the holo (reflect) or again, use the time to cc/immob and run out of it's range. The skill usually only's worth it if the enemy's on the edge of it's range (otherwise holo's better of closing the gap) so outranging parts of it is quite possible.

    @coro.3176 said:

    • Holo Shockwave: This is a 100% must dodge skill. If you get CC'd by this, you're going to get combo'd down. It does good damage and is a really long CC.

    If you're close to the holo you can move directly on him and it won't hit you. Otherwise yes, dodge it, or blind / cc it or stab yourself, eat it and keep up your damage while the holo can't move. Notice a pattern? Do some pressure yourself, holo's open to it most of the time.

    @coro.3176 said:
    Phew. That's a lot to defend against. It's not impossible though. With careful play, you can do it. (eg. on my Engi, I'll swap to toolkit while the holo is in mid-air jumping to me with Holo Leap, then use Gear Shield to block Holo Leap and the first hit of Corona Burst. Then I'll dodge Shockwave and most of Blitz.)

    For the leap open, as said, immob or cc it. If you block while the holo's leaping you're doing it a favor because you allow it to close in without risk.
    Also, if you're playing core engi, you're asking to get outmatched by a lot of other specs (sad as that is). If you then not learn to better fight these specs I do not wonder you get frustrated. Immobilizing or CC'ing a leaping melee is engi 101. Since vanilla.

    @coro.3176 said:
    However .. you have to keep in mind Holo gets all those skills for free with its elite spec. Now that I've wasted all my defense, they can just disable forge and play like a core engineer for a short time while it recharges. Meanwhile I've got no defense left and they have a full bar of weapon skills and utility skills. How am I going to defend against Overcharged Shot and Jump Shot when I spent all my defense on Photon Forge?

    Since you didn't use any attack, defend yourself with OS maybe or jump shot the holo? But really, you should use OS and Net shot while the Holo's most susceptible to it (PF). That has the potential to negate the advantage of PF and do good damage in the process.

    @coro.3176 said:
    I just don't see how Holo can ever be balanced with Core Engi when it gets such ridiculous power and sacrifices nothing. The heat mechanic is not a downside. In fact it ends up providing almost as much as a free heal skill every 20s.

    It's not for free, you lose 1 skill. That's little, I agree. But in the end, PF is a kit, though a very competent one at that. That's why it has an increased opportunity cost (locks you out of weapon and kit skills and therefore you're stuck in a melee set) and a limiter (heat). The forced melee focus / lock is also why holo gets the heal. Melee's a pretty dangerous place for an engi.
    Holo's a strong upgrade to core and in the upper tiers of the meta, but there's still a lot you can do to fight it.

    tl;dr: Holo's stronger than core because core's not up to the meta right now. Get better at fighting or use a spec that doesn't handicap yourself.

    SD Engi / Holo roaming videos: https://www.youtube.com/user/algeyr

  • Op I think you stumbled across something that should be discussed: The introduction of a 'Core' spec. Pretty much the cleanest way to handle the powercreep without messing with the flow of the elite specs.

  • @lorddarkflare.9186 said:
    Op I think you stumbled across something that should be discussed: The introduction of a 'Core' spec. Pretty much the cleanest way to handle the powercreep without messing with the flow of the elite specs.

    I dont quite follow. Are you suggesting a unique spec only available to core? Cause that would just be another elite spec.

    At this point anet should either make elite specs mandatory, or people need to realize that elite specs will always be more powerful than core. There are exceptions, but those builds are few and far between.

  • Naxos.2503Naxos.2503 Member ✭✭✭

    I felt the need to comment, seeing as I main a holosmith (Condi DPS to be precise, with emphasis on condi)

    It is an undeniable power house. if I can get the drop on someone, or Something, they're dead meat. Pure and simple. On the flip side, to achieve this degree of deadliness, I have to Literally drop all forms of defense and almost all of my sustain. On that side, I feel my build is "balanced" because what I can do to others, can happen to me.
    Usually, my holosmith can down targets fast by using several CCs along with wide area damages (bonus if they deal condi damage).

    On the flip side, my Stunbreak are Severly limited, and the only one I can technically take, is the elixir gun toolbelt skill, which, if I have in my selection, actually decreases my output by a lot, and only provides small heal, and -1- stunbreak, when enemies often have Many stuns. I thus get easily killed by anyone who can chain a stun, negating all my raw damage output. No, I do not have sustained stability on it. I'm a holosmith, not a core engineer. or a scrapper.

    Holosmith is a glass cannon. It looks strong, and is strong. But it's just as brittle. Changing it's strenght negates it's Only advantage : raw damage.

  • coro.3176coro.3176 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Naxos.2503 said:
    I felt the need to comment, seeing as I main a holosmith (Condi DPS to be precise, with emphasis on condi)

    It is an undeniable power house. if I can get the drop on someone, or Something, they're dead meat. Pure and simple. On the flip side, to achieve this degree of deadliness, I have to Literally drop all forms of defense and almost all of my sustain. On that side, I feel my build is "balanced" because what I can do to others, can happen to me.
    Usually, my holosmith can down targets fast by using several CCs along with wide area damages (bonus if they deal condi damage).

    On the flip side, my Stunbreak are Severly limited, and the only one I can technically take, is the elixir gun toolbelt skill, which, if I have in my selection, actually decreases my output by a lot, and only provides small heal, and -1- stunbreak, when enemies often have Many stuns. I thus get easily killed by anyone who can chain a stun, negating all my raw damage output. No, I do not have sustained stability on it. I'm a holosmith, not a core engineer. or a scrapper.

    Holosmith is a glass cannon. It looks strong, and is strong. But it's just as brittle. Changing it's strenght negates it's Only advantage : raw damage.

    It's not though. To achieve its damage, it SHOULD HAVE to be a glass cannon but at the moment, it does not have to be one.

    It has high block uptime from shield and spectrum shield that allow stalling while forge is on cooldown. Heat therapy is good sustain, and it has lots of protection, water combos, and damage reduction. While not on the level of some other builds, it also packs enough cleanse to nullify a lot of condi burst - it at least has no problem clearing my first few condi bombs as core/pistols engi. To top it off, if somehow that all fails, passive elixir S will stall an additional 4 seconds, which is often enough to buy a dodge + heal + get you back in the game.

    I'm not saying Holo can't be a glass cannon - it certainly is if you don't take the defensive traits/skills, but right now the meta builds get to be both a cannon and have a plethora of defensive fallbacks. It does too much damage for how defensive it can also be, and this is ultimately because it gets a great damage kit on its f5 skill "for free" and thus can spend most or all of its traits + utility skills on defense.

    Core engi + Scrapper on the other hand, have to carefully weigh the pros + cons of each skill/trait. They can't fill their bar with all defense like holo does because they'll never kill anyone.

  • Naxos.2503Naxos.2503 Member ✭✭✭

    @coro.3176 said:

    It's not though. To achieve its damage, it SHOULD HAVE to be a glass cannon but at the moment, it does not have to be one.

    It has high block uptime from shield and spectrum shield that allow stalling while forge is on cooldown. Heat therapy is good sustain, and it has lots of protection, water combos, and damage reduction. While not on the level of some other builds, it also packs enough cleanse to nullify a lot of condi burst - it at least has no problem clearing my first few condi bombs as core/pistols engi. To top it off, if somehow that all fails, passive elixir S will stall an additional 4 seconds, which is often enough to buy a dodge + heal + get you back in the game.

    I'm not saying Holo can't be a glass cannon - it certainly is if you don't take the defensive traits/skills, but right now the meta builds get to be both a cannon and have a plethora of defensive fallbacks. It does too much damage for how defensive it can also be, and this is ultimately because it gets a great damage kit on its f5 skill "for free" and thus can spend most or all of its traits + utility skills on defense.

    Core engi + Scrapper on the other hand, have to carefully weigh the pros + cons of each skill/trait. They can't fill their bar with all defense like holo does because they'll never kill anyone.

    Shield constitute a drop in DPS. I use Pistol to achieve my DPS. Again, I do not use Heat Therapy, I use the Elixir H, for faster cooldown, more reliable heal, and extra buffs, increasing my DPS, and making my Healing Somewhat more reliable, even if 'technically' less efficient.

    The build you faced is on par with a warrior. My build deals Far More damage, and has far more weaknesses as a result. What you faced is Not a problem of damage. It's a problem of Sustain. You mentionned Shield, Elixir S and thus result in Indeed a very defensive build. Why would you want to destroy it's damage then, if defense is the issue ? In this particular case, the skill you mentionned are not tied to Holosmith at all, Holosmith is pure damage. It removes one trait line to achieve that damage. It makes no sense then to diminish that damage, if it's the focus of the class.

    What you have is an Engineer issue. Engineers are the Utility class by exellence, they're meant to be hard to counter due to how wide their panel of skills are. Those are meant to counter their weapon switch limitations. An engineer can kit their Entire skills (toolbelt included) to have CC, thus having the ability to near flawlessly continue to CC their target. They can also (as I do) gear almost the entirety of their skills in Burning condi, which can reach some rather insane Numbers. They can also proc a fairly large amount of buffs on allies, if it's their thing. But in Each case, their gear has to be fully tailored to One branch to be somewhat efficient. Yes, holosmith has a large amount of damage, outside of everything else. I fully make use of that fact, to achieve roughly 5k Worth of raw DPS, on a Condi focused build (my condi reach 12k per tick). On the flip side, if I had the condi alone, I'd be pretty much done for, most of the skills that inflict high condi damage are Fields, easily dodged out of, and most of Holo (and engineer in general) CC are either : Long range, but weak soft CC, or short ranged hard CC. It's not that easy to manage to combine both whatever CC you have, and those fields. I often miss my targets. I also can find myself pitted against Necromancers, who transfer All my stacks of condis right back at me, resulting in an insta kill, due to how low my health is, or I face condi cleanse (though that's mitigated by how often I can throw condis).

    Photon forge is a big trap. Most skilled players stunlock me as my forge is reaching critical hit, which nearly Always result in me losing enough health to be killed in one shot.
    Look at it this way : Engineer was built around the concept of being so varied, it's nearly impossible to Fully be able to counter it as a class. On the other hand, Holosmith : Has lenghty animations that often cannot be cancelled, or have a long cooldown if they Are cancelled, Have Very obvious tells (the hologram effect on the character is not a benefit to the Holo, but to Other players. it's the biggest tell in the game), Is Very vulnerable to interrupt and stunlocks.

    I -Never- managed to kill a thief with my holo in a duel. As a holo, my attacks are in the melee/short range variety. If I face a deadeye, i'm downed before I even hit them. If I face a Daredevil, they interrupt, stunlock, and dodge all my attacks and fields while downing me while I haven't touched their health. If I face a core thief, their raw damage output and dodge put me out of order just as fast.
    If you want a hard counter to Holo, look to Any of the thief spec. I have yet to find a way to manage them

  • coro.3176coro.3176 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited November 21, 2018

    ... uh. Sorry. In my previous response, I mistook you for someone who knew how to play Holo/Engi.

    Shield constitute a drop in DPS. I use Pistol to achieve my DPS. Again, I do not use Heat Therapy, I use the Elixir H, for faster cooldown, more reliable heal, and extra buffs, increasing my DPS, and making my Healing Somewhat more reliable, even if 'technically' less efficient.
    ...
    Photon forge is a big trap. Most skilled players stunlock me as my forge is reaching critical hit, which nearly Always result in me losing enough health to be killed in one shot.
    ...
    I -Never- managed to kill a thief with my holo in a duel.

    Now it's pretty clear you don't know what you're talking about. Heat therapy is a minor trait, by the way. You can't not use it unless you overheat every time and don't take PBM.

    Holosmith : Has lenghty animations that often cannot be cancelled, or have a long cooldown if they Are cancelled, Have Very obvious tells (the hologram effect on the character is not a benefit to the Holo, but to Other players. it's the biggest tell in the game), Is Very vulnerable to interrupt and stunlocks.

    Yeah, no it's not. You should be taking Eclipse as your second trait and gaining stability from Corona Burst. That will solve your interrupt problem. In a PvP situation, CB is always going to hit something, so you'll always get that stab.

  • @coro.3176 said:
    Core engi + Scrapper on the other hand, have to carefully weigh the pros + cons of each skill/trait. They can't fill their bar with all defense like holo does because they'll never kill anyone.

    I would say this is a fault of core engineer and not holosmith being op. When a class has to use a utility slot to gain a melee swap, something is wrong.

    @Naxos.2503 said:
    If you want a hard counter to Holo, look to Any of the thief spec. I have yet to find a way to manage them

    Quickness + hip shot

  • Dace.8173Dace.8173 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Zex Anthon.8673 said:

    @lorddarkflare.9186 said:
    Op I think you stumbled across something that should be discussed: The introduction of a 'Core' spec. Pretty much the cleanest way to handle the powercreep without messing with the flow of the elite specs.

    I dont quite follow. Are you suggesting a unique spec only available to core? Cause that would just be another elite spec.

    At this point anet should either make elite specs mandatory, or people need to realize that elite specs will always be more powerful than core. There are exceptions, but those builds are few and far between.

    I think people just need to realize that Elite specs will always be more powerful. A lot of MMO's I've played over the years the core specs that were playable before the release of the first expansions were eventually wed out of the game. It's just the natural course of most games. In this game, people want to stay with Core, which is cool. However, that should come with the understanding that they are going to be weaker as Elites (and to some extent the expansion itself) would be unappealing if it was just more of the same.

    The other problem is that a lot of folks don't want to learn how to counter an Elite and so they just want them nerfed. Holosmith is strong but it is beatable. It has several weaknesses that can be exploited if a person knows what they are doing. Sadly, instead of that we get a lot of threads that claim Elites are all too strong and need to be depowered.

  • @Dace.8173 said:

    @Zex Anthon.8673 said:

    @lorddarkflare.9186 said:
    Op I think you stumbled across something that should be discussed: The introduction of a 'Core' spec. Pretty much the cleanest way to handle the powercreep without messing with the flow of the elite specs.

    I dont quite follow. Are you suggesting a unique spec only available to core? Cause that would just be another elite spec.

    At this point anet should either make elite specs mandatory, or people need to realize that elite specs will always be more powerful than core. There are exceptions, but those builds are few and far between.

    I think people just need to realize that Elite specs will always be more powerful. A lot of MMO's I've played over the years the core specs that were playable before the release of the first expansions were eventually wed out of the game. It's just the natural course of most games. In this game, people want to stay with Core, which is cool. However, that should come with the understanding that they are going to be weaker as Elites (and to some extent the expansion itself) would be unappealing if it was just more of the same.

    The other problem is that a lot of folks don't want to learn how to counter an Elite and so they just want them nerfed. Holosmith is strong but it is beatable. It has several weaknesses that can be exploited if a person knows what they are doing. Sadly, instead of that we get a lot of threads that claim Elites are all too strong and need to be depowered.

    I dont think new elites need to be more powerful than their predecessors to drive sales. I think its entirely possible for future elites to be on the same power level as holo and scrapper while still being interesting. I dont think its realistic to ask anet to balance core professions with their elites.

  • Naxos.2503Naxos.2503 Member ✭✭✭

    @coro.3176 said:
    ... uh. Sorry. In my previous response, I mistook you for someone who knew how to play Holo/Engi.

    Shield constitute a drop in DPS. I use Pistol to achieve my DPS. Again, I do not use Heat Therapy, I use the Elixir H, for faster cooldown, more reliable heal, and extra buffs, increasing my DPS, and making my Healing Somewhat more reliable, even if 'technically' less efficient.
    ...
    Photon forge is a big trap. Most skilled players stunlock me as my forge is reaching critical hit, which nearly Always result in me losing enough health to be killed in one shot.
    ...
    I -Never- managed to kill a thief with my holo in a duel.

    Now it's pretty clear you don't know what you're talking about. Heat therapy is a minor trait, by the way. You can't not use it unless you overheat every time and don't take PBM.

    Holosmith : Has lenghty animations that often cannot be cancelled, or have a long cooldown if they Are cancelled, Have Very obvious tells (the hologram effect on the character is not a benefit to the Holo, but to Other players. it's the biggest tell in the game), Is Very vulnerable to interrupt and stunlocks.

    Yeah, no it's not. You should be taking Eclipse as your second trait and gaining stability from Corona Burst. That will solve your interrupt problem. In a PvP situation, CB is always going to hit something, so you'll always get that stab.

    Right. Maybe writing at midnight was not a good idea. Doesn't mean you should blatantly say I dont know how to play -You- are the one having a problem with that class.

    Fair enough, I misread and was thinking of Coolant blast instead of Healing Therapy. I do have Healing Therapy. Every holo does. I dont exactly understand the point you raise then.

    As I mentionned before : I went for full DPS, meaning I Consciously picked Storm, instead of Eclipse. Again, I dont have a problem with the consequences that it carries. I prefer it that way. I find it more satisfying to wreck a player's health immediately if I get the timing right, rather than rely on cheap tricks. If they interrupt me, they're playing Right. That's how they're meant to counter me. If they so much as get hit by my Holo shockwave, I have no worries to have about getting stunlocked. In my opinion, the build you're facing is far more lenient. From what I can see, their damage is not as high as it can be.> @Zex Anthon.8673 said:

    @coro.3176 said:
    Core engi + Scrapper on the other hand, have to carefully weigh the pros + cons of each skill/trait. They can't fill their bar with all defense like holo does because they'll never kill anyone.

    I would say this is a fault of core engineer and not holosmith being op. When a class has to use a utility slot to gain a melee swap, something is wrong.

    @Naxos.2503 said:
    If you want a hard counter to Holo, look to Any of the thief spec. I have yet to find a way to manage them

    Quickness + hip shot

    Thanks, I'll remember it, though I run a Sword Pistol holo :< Good thinking though, I should look into my rifle more, shame my condi is burn based, that bleed does little for me...

  • Dace.8173Dace.8173 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Zex Anthon.8673 said:

    @Dace.8173 said:

    @Zex Anthon.8673 said:

    @lorddarkflare.9186 said:
    Op I think you stumbled across something that should be discussed: The introduction of a 'Core' spec. Pretty much the cleanest way to handle the powercreep without messing with the flow of the elite specs.

    I dont quite follow. Are you suggesting a unique spec only available to core? Cause that would just be another elite spec.

    At this point anet should either make elite specs mandatory, or people need to realize that elite specs will always be more powerful than core. There are exceptions, but those builds are few and far between.

    I think people just need to realize that Elite specs will always be more powerful. A lot of MMO's I've played over the years the core specs that were playable before the release of the first expansions were eventually wed out of the game. It's just the natural course of most games. In this game, people want to stay with Core, which is cool. However, that should come with the understanding that they are going to be weaker as Elites (and to some extent the expansion itself) would be unappealing if it was just more of the same.

    The other problem is that a lot of folks don't want to learn how to counter an Elite and so they just want them nerfed. Holosmith is strong but it is beatable. It has several weaknesses that can be exploited if a person knows what they are doing. Sadly, instead of that we get a lot of threads that claim Elites are all too strong and need to be depowered.

    I dont think new elites need to be more powerful than their predecessors to drive sales. I think its entirely possible for future elites to be on the same power level as holo and scrapper while still being interesting. I dont think its realistic to ask anet to balance core professions with their elites.

    I'm not saying the Elites themselves need to be stronger than previous Elites, but that they need to be stronger than Core to drive sales. If I'm buying a product that doesn't make me better than I was before I bought it then I'm not inclined to buy future product.

  • coro.3176coro.3176 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited November 22, 2018

    @Naxos.2503 said:

    @coro.3176 said:
    ... uh. Sorry. In my previous response, I mistook you for someone who knew how to play Holo/Engi.

    Shield constitute a drop in DPS. I use Pistol to achieve my DPS. Again, I do not use Heat Therapy, I use the Elixir H, for faster cooldown, more reliable heal, and extra buffs, increasing my DPS, and making my Healing Somewhat more reliable, even if 'technically' less efficient.
    ...
    Photon forge is a big trap. Most skilled players stunlock me as my forge is reaching critical hit, which nearly Always result in me losing enough health to be killed in one shot.
    ...
    I -Never- managed to kill a thief with my holo in a duel.

    Now it's pretty clear you don't know what you're talking about. Heat therapy is a minor trait, by the way. You can't not use it unless you overheat every time and don't take PBM.

    Holosmith : Has lenghty animations that often cannot be cancelled, or have a long cooldown if they Are cancelled, Have Very obvious tells (the hologram effect on the character is not a benefit to the Holo, but to Other players. it's the biggest tell in the game), Is Very vulnerable to interrupt and stunlocks.

    Yeah, no it's not. You should be taking Eclipse as your second trait and gaining stability from Corona Burst. That will solve your interrupt problem. In a PvP situation, CB is always going to hit something, so you'll always get that stab.

    Right. Maybe writing at midnight was not a good idea. Doesn't mean you should blatantly say I dont know how to play -You- are the one having a problem with that class.

    My problem with it is that it's overpowered compared to core and scrapper. It is overpowered because it gets the best damaging + cc kit in the game for free with its elite spec.

    @Dace.8173 said:
    I'm not saying the Elites themselves need to be stronger than previous Elites, but that they need to be stronger than Core to drive sales. If I'm buying a product that doesn't make me better than I was before I bought it then I'm not inclined to buy future product.

    This contradicts itself. If you want new products to make you stronger than you were before, then shouldn't you WANT each new elite to be stronger than the previous elite?

    If Anet sold the option to slot a fourth traitline for $100 with the next expansion, would you support it?

  • holo is fine. l2p

  • Dace.8173Dace.8173 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @coro.3176 said:

    @Dace.8173 said:
    I'm not saying the Elites themselves need to be stronger than previous Elites, but that they need to be stronger than Core to drive sales. If I'm buying a product that doesn't make me better than I was before I bought it then I'm not inclined to buy future product.

    This contradicts itself. If you want new products to make you stronger than you were before, then shouldn't you WANT each new elite to be stronger than the previous elite?

    If Anet sold the option to slot a fourth traitline for $100 with the next expansion, would you support it?

    Yeah, no, it's not a contradiction. You're just strawmaning to make a very bad and poor point.

    @biczkowski.2961 said:
    holo is fine. l2p

    Agreed.

  • coro.3176coro.3176 Member ✭✭✭✭

    If I'm buying a product that doesn't make me better than I was before I bought it then I'm not inclined to buy future product.

    You're straight-up asking for power-creep here. Is that not what you want?

  • @coro.3176 said:

    @Naxos.2503 said:

    @coro.3176 said:
    ... uh. Sorry. In my previous response, I mistook you for someone who knew how to play Holo/Engi.

    Shield constitute a drop in DPS. I use Pistol to achieve my DPS. Again, I do not use Heat Therapy, I use the Elixir H, for faster cooldown, more reliable heal, and extra buffs, increasing my DPS, and making my Healing Somewhat more reliable, even if 'technically' less efficient.
    ...
    Photon forge is a big trap. Most skilled players stunlock me as my forge is reaching critical hit, which nearly Always result in me losing enough health to be killed in one shot.
    ...
    I -Never- managed to kill a thief with my holo in a duel.

    Now it's pretty clear you don't know what you're talking about. Heat therapy is a minor trait, by the way. You can't not use it unless you overheat every time and don't take PBM.

    Holosmith : Has lenghty animations that often cannot be cancelled, or have a long cooldown if they Are cancelled, Have Very obvious tells (the hologram effect on the character is not a benefit to the Holo, but to Other players. it's the biggest tell in the game), Is Very vulnerable to interrupt and stunlocks.

    Yeah, no it's not. You should be taking Eclipse as your second trait and gaining stability from Corona Burst. That will solve your interrupt problem. In a PvP situation, CB is always going to hit something, so you'll always get that stab.

    Right. Maybe writing at midnight was not a good idea. Doesn't mean you should blatantly say I dont know how to play -You- are the one having a problem with that class.

    My problem with it is that it's overpowered compared to core and scrapper. It is overpowered because it gets the best damaging + cc kit in the game for free with its elite spec.

    Alternatively, core and scrapper are underpowered and holosmith is balanced. How about we give core and scrapper access to kits for "free" and give scrapper a unique elite profession kit to define its role a bit more.

    @coro.3176 said:

    @Dace.8173 said:
    I'm not saying the Elites themselves need to be stronger than previous Elites, but that they need to be stronger than Core to drive sales. If I'm buying a product that doesn't make me better than I was before I bought it then I'm not inclined to buy future product.

    This contradicts itself. If you want new products to make you stronger than you were before, then shouldn't you WANT each new elite to be stronger than the previous elite?

    If Anet sold the option to slot a fourth traitline for $100 with the next expansion, would you support it?

    I think Dace is saying free content shouldn't be as powerful as paid content if the goal is to drive sales. I don't entirely agree with this because I think the unique mechanics that elite specs offer should be enough to drive sales. However, I can imagine losing sales because of f2p players being content with core specs should they be equal in strength.

  • Core Condi engi is generally a bad match-up against meta-holo (it's meta for a reason).

    Core Condi is not in a particularly good place, it doesn't do condition burst damage, it doesn't have access to enough overall stats to make it effective in the current environment, the weapon kit lacks access to CC or mobility.

    The amulets do not support the spec that well:

    • You can either be a bit of a wet noodle using rabid or wanderer as core condi doesn't have much burst
    • Be made of glass using wizard or viper
    • Be middle ground with sage, but still very vulnerable to power damage

    Mirages and Scourges have high condition burst and core guards have lots of blocks good power damaged and lots of burning. They also generally have tools to control their opponents while preventing damage intake to themselves something that Core Engi lacks.

    If instead of the way amulets currently work you were given a certain number of stat points that you could arrange as you wish, it could be better supported.


    Most of the core specs are not as good as the elite specs and the real outlier here is core guardian.

    So yes Holo spec generally provides the engineer with a little bit more than the other engineering specs and that is power creep. It would also appear to be intentional from the devs so that people will buy the expacs.

    The downside is that it means you will generally be a bit less effective than the meta build, but that was always the case, holo doesn't bring a great kit to fight warriors 1v1, but condi tends to be a bit more effective against them.

  • Many opinions already that I fully share here.
    Just want to Highlight one Thing that many People seem to get wrong in my opinion:

    Photon Blitz is NOT per-se a huge amount of damage, I think it is even less damage than one full autoattack-Rotation (and takes approx. the same amount of time).

    The only thing that makes it feasible is that it is ranged.

  • Lunateric.3708Lunateric.3708 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Prinzsecond.4863 said:
    Many opinions already that I fully share here.
    Just want to Highlight one Thing that many People seem to get wrong in my opinion:

    Photon Blitz is NOT per-se a huge amount of damage, I think it is even less damage than one full autoattack-Rotation (and takes approx. the same amount of time).

    The only thing that makes it feasible is that it is ranged.

    Assuming you mean the PvP/WvW split mods then yes, both a full auto chain and one photon blitz are fairly close.

  • I think Holo got a lot of nerfs that put their numbers in the right place for PvP.

    -In PvP Photon Blitz's damage multiplier is less than similar attacks like Unload/Rapidfire.
    -In PvP Holo Leap hits a tiny bit harder than Bomb auto (.05 higher multiplier)

    So the only must-dodge attacks are Corona Burst and Holo Shockwave which is more because of their utility rather than damage. I think Holo's strengths now just come from it patching up Engineer's weaknesses by being both reliable and versatile. It's a problem with core Engi just being so limited by itself, so its Elite specs have to drastically overcompensate; Scrapper Hammer is probably the most overloaded weapon skillset in the game but it's on Engi so its fine.

  • coro.3176coro.3176 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited November 22, 2018

    I usually don't bother dodging Corona Burst because it pulses twice, and is almost guaranteed to hit something in a pvp/wvw scenario - another player, a pet, minion, gyro, trash mob, something. If it's a pure 1v1, then I might dodge it or try a blind with Static Shot, but I usually want to save the dodges for Shockwave and Prime Light Beam.

    I guess I'm a bit biased because I mostly WvW with occasional PvP. In WvW, Holo Leap still hits like a truck - regularly smacking me for 5-7k and I'm on nearly full Dire gear. It might do even more than that on a squishy. This is on a 600 range leap with a 2 second (!!!) cooldown.

    Shockwave still goes way too far. You just can't cover 600 units of distance even if you start running the second they start the animation. It's about as punishing as Chilled to the Bone, except that's on a 90s cooldown and shockwave is on 15..

    But really, my main point was that even though you can defend against all those things with smart play, you've still used all your defence on them. When holo turns off forge, you're now playing engi vs engi, except you wasted all your defence on forge and they've still got their dodges/blocks/invulns.

  • Laila Lightness.8742Laila Lightness.8742 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited November 23, 2018

    @coro.3176 said:
    So what do we do about this?

    I recommend a few things:

    • Photon Forge is really powerful. Give it some kind of downside to its use - eg. no ability to reduce heat. If Holo has to weigh using powerful skills vs taking overheat damage, it'll actually be a trade off rather than free skills added to engi (let's face it. giving up a single toolbelt f5 skill is no tradeoff worth mentioning).
    • Alternatively, pull some of the power out of Forge to put it back on par with core weapons. Maybe reduce the range on Shockwave (600 units is REALLY far). Maybe increase the cooldown on leap, etc.

    Make forge dmg over time while used. And cant be healed while or turn it off. Along with corona and shockwave deal 50% of dmg to holo of the dmg it deals to other make holo be used with caution for forge can kill the user fast if used badly

  • I don't have much to add but that I agree wholeheartedly with coro. Holosmith, like every other elite specialisation, offers too much for too little effort.

    Stacked traits and abilities have hurt GW2 combat enormously. After 2 expansions of virtually the same approach it is pretty obvious though that making the elite specialisations over perform is intentional.

    All is vain.

  • Naxos.2503Naxos.2503 Member ✭✭✭
    edited November 23, 2018

    @Laila Lightness.8742 said:

    @coro.3176 said:
    So what do we do about this?

    I recommend a few things:

    • Photon Forge is really powerful. Give it some kind of downside to its use - eg. no ability to reduce heat. If Holo has to weigh using powerful skills vs taking overheat damage, it'll actually be a trade off rather than free skills added to engi (let's face it. giving up a single toolbelt f5 skill is no tradeoff worth mentioning).
    • Alternatively, pull some of the power out of Forge to put it back on par with core weapons. Maybe reduce the range on Shockwave (600 units is REALLY far). Maybe increase the cooldown on leap, etc.

    Make forge dmg over time while used. And cant be healed while or turn it off. Along with corona and shockwave deal 50% of dmg to holo of the dmg it deals to other make holo be used with caution for forge can kill the user fast if used badly

    That's excessive, both those skills increase the Heat meter by a Lot already, you'll rarely be able to use both more than Once in a fight without overheating or deactivating the forge to cool down. Adding those drawbacks would make the spec Completely worthless, punishing players because others dont dodge, boon strip, or stun the holo. That's punishing a class for other players bad play.

  • @coro.3176 said:

    @Vagrant.7206 said:
    I'm not sure I understand the emphasis on Holosmith, when the thread says it's just an example. Pretty much every PoF elite spec has some kind of absurd power creep at this point, with maybe the exception of renegade. The problem is that once you engage in this kind of powercreep, it's hard to tune down. Because taking one class down by itself may render some other class super OP or result in some oddly lopsided behavior.

    It's easy to make sweeping generalizations such as "Reduce power damaage!!!11!" or "Reduce condi damage!!1111!" or "Reduce CC!!11!1!" but this ignores the fact that these things don't exist in a vacuum. Any of the elite specs, by comparison to core specs, are way overpowered, but next to each other... eh, they're ok. So if you're asking to take holosmith down to core engineer level of threat, what you're really saying is that you don't want holosmith in the current meta, much like you don't really find most core classes in the meta.

    You're right. That's sort of where I was going with this post, but didn't want to write an entire novel. A lot of elite specs are similar by analogy (but not all!).

    • Mirage gets better, longer dodges for free.
    • Druid gets CA healing + cc skills for free.
    • Daredevil gets a free extra dodge.
    • Even Scrapper, with it's often mocked class mechanic, gets a free stomp/res gyro.
    • .. but Holo is by far the worst offender for power creep, getting a suite of low cooldown, must dodge skills and giving nothing up (1 toolbelt skill doesn't count).

      Some elite specs are legitimate trade offs though:

    • Reaper gives up Death Shroud for Reaper Shroud

    • Deadeye gives up Steal for Mark
    • Spellbreaker gives up a bar of adrenaline

    Now, you can argue whether those classes are balanced or not, but in principle they can be balanced because they've given up something to get their new mechanic.

    For the former group, if the elite traitline was much worse than the core traitlines, this could be a fair trade. In practice, the elite traitlines are almost universally better, so they're pretty power creeped. In fact, I think Holo would probably still be better than core even with NO MAJOR TRAITS slotted at all.

    I just picked Holo because I think it's the best example of pure power creep on an elite spec.

    Edit: and to clarify, I want all elite specs nerfed down to core levels.

    holosmit doesn't give anything compared to other classes, because core engi is already underpower

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