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Giving conditions a role and normalizing condition removal

Swagg.9236Swagg.9236 Member ✭✭✭✭
edited April 7, 2019 in PVP

Since Conditions never had a proper role in GW2 from the outset (because "the other untyped damage that isn't already zerker-stat damage" is not a proper role), it'd be nice to give them a refined, damage-support role for PvE which would simultaneously clear up a lot of the nonsense in PvP. This is a (revised) comprehensive suggestion as to how to do so:

CONDITION AVAILABILITY AND APPLICATION

  • Conditions are now classified into two groups: Lesion and Shock.
  • Weapons are now divided into two types: Power and Condition.
  • Power weapons now deal no conditions whatsoever. They have an emphasis on damage or boon generation along with some mobility and CC.
  • Condition weapons each generate only 1 or (at most) 2 Lesion condition(s) respectively.
  • Condition generation removed from all auto-attacks, utility skills (to be potentially re-instated later) and culled from passive triggers (“inflict on critical hit,” “X% chance to inflict” and "inflict this condition to inflict this other condition" traits all removed); runes and sigils which inflict conditions also removed (to be potentially re-instated later).
  • Each two-handed and off-hand condition weapon has a respective Shock Skill.
  • Shock skills are skills with conditional effects: if a shock skill strikes the target(s) with the appropriate amount of total, active lesion stacks, then the conditional effect is applied to the target(s). This stack total is counted across all active conditions that may be currently afflicting a target.

LESION CONDITIONS (CONDITION STACK MECHANIC RE-WORK)

  • Lesion conditions include: Burning, Poison, Bleeding and Slowed.
  • Lesion damage scales directly with Power; Condition Damage and Expertise removed from the stat pool.
  • Condition (Lesion) stacks now only express the intensity of a condition's secondary effect (if applicable) rather than its total damage per tick. A respective condition's damage tick totals will always remain constant (based on the power of the most recent source of the condition) regardless of the number of stacks on a target.
  • Condition (Lesion) stacks now cap at 25.
  • Lesion damage ticks cannot critically hit.

Lesion Condition List (with damage and effects)

  • Bleeding — (0.3) per tick
  • Burning — (0.2) per tick; -2% Boon Duration per stack
  • Poisoned — (0.2) per tick; -2% Healing Effectiveness per stack
  • Slowed — -33% Movement Speed; -10% Swiftness Duration per stack

SHOCK CONDITIONS

  • Shock conditions include: Vulnerability, Weakness, Numb and Deep Wound.
  • Shock conditions cannot be cleansed with condition removal, however, they have very brief durations. Shock Conditions are set-ups for brief, burst windows or well-timed defensive measures rather than long-term statuses.
  • Once a shock condition is initially applied, it cannot be applied again throughout the course of its duration (not even in a manner which would allow a new instance of the same shock condition to overwrite an older instance). However, if a player were to apply a shock condition to a target which already has that same shock condition, that player would instead inflict a packet of Power-scaling damage called Shock Damage (i.e. if a player applies Weakness to a target which is already Weakened, that player will inflict a Shock Damage packet).
  • For the purpose of tool-tip descriptions, a target suffering from a shock condition will be referred to as "shocked."

Shock Condition List (with effects)

  • Vulnerability — 10% Incoming Damage; Cannot Gain Boons
  • Deep Wound — -300 Toughness
  • Weakness PvP — -50% Outgoing Damage; Cannot Critically Hit
  • Weakness PvE — -50% Outgoing Damage; Cannot Critically Hit; 5% Incoming Damage
  • Numb PvP — -66% Movement Speed; -100% Skill Recharge Speed
  • Numb PvE — -66% Movement Speed; 5% Incoming Damage

Shock Damage:

  • Shock Damage PvP — (Weapon strength) * Power * (2.5) / (target's armor)
  • Shock Damage PvE — (Weapon strength) * Power * (5.0) / (target's armor)
  • Shock Damage number totals will appear in the same sort of text font and size as do critical hits—although with a different background splash color—in order to denote its appearance.
  • Whenever a player applies a Shock condition or inflicts Shock Damage, it deals 250 Defiance Bar damage.
  • Shock Damage cannot critically hit.

AURA CHANGES

Auras are currently among the most reactive mechanics in Guild Wars 2. In order for them to not only complement a re-worked condition system, but also provide a more engaging and flexible gameplay paradigm, they would need a complete re-work.

[Fire Shield] renamed to [Fire Aura]
Deal increased damage.

  • Damage: +5%

[Frost Aura]
Gain bonus toughness. Your attacks slow foes if they are within the range threshold (no more than once per interval).

  • Toughness: +300
  • Range threshold: 400
  • Slowed (3s): -33% Movement Speed; -10% Swiftness Duration
  • Interval: 1s

[Shocking Aura]
Briefly stun adjacent foes when you gain this aura. Your attacks remove stability.

  • Number of targets: 5
  • Stun: ½s
  • Stun radius: 180
  • Boons removed per attack: [Stability]

[Light Aura]
Gain bonus Healing Power. Each time you heal an ally, gain Light Armor.

  • Healing Power +300
  • Light Armor (3s): +20 Toughness (Maximum stacks: 25)

Light Aura no longer stacks in duration.

[Chaos Armor]
Gain superspeed when you gain this aura. If you strike a foe from within the range threshold, you break enemy targeting and shadowstep to a random point around your target. (no more than once per interval).

  • Initial superspeed (3s): Movement Speed is greatly increased.
  • Breaks Enemy Targeting
  • Range threshold: 600
  • Interval: 3s

COMBO FIELD CHANGES

  1. A single actor (player or otherwise) may no longer combo with a single field more than 3 times; further combo finishers (from the same source) applied to a single field will simply yield no effect (i.e. a team of five players can collectively combo on the same fire field a total of 15 times: 3 times for each player).
  2. Projectile Finishers now only exist as guaranteed instances rather than split between 100% finishers and 20% Chance finishers. Moreover, no Projectile Finishers exist on auto-attacks.
    Projectile finishers now have a much larger, secondary hitbox which is applied to qualified projectiles; performing a Projectile Finisher now automatically applies any beneficial effects to the user as well as any allies in the projectile's path.
  3. Skills which currently feature more than 3 respective projectile or whirl finishers will be reduced to a guaranteed amount of 3 respective finishers (either all applied at cast resolution or across a channeled duration).

FIRE

  • Projectile — Burning|3| (5s): (1.0); -6% Boon Duration
  • Whirl — Area Fire Aura (3s) (240 radius; 5 allies)

WATER

  • Projectile — Healing Bolt: 220 (0.125)
  • Whirl — Area Healing: 440 (0.125) (240 radius; 5 allies)

ICE

  • Projectile — Bleeding|3| (5s): (1.5)
  • Whirl — Area Swiftness removal; Area Slow (4s): -33% Movement Speed; -10% Swiftness Duration (240 radius; 5 targets)

POISON

  • Blast — Area Poison|3| (5s): (1.0); -6% Healing Effectiveness (180 radius; 5 targets)
  • Leap — Venomtouch (3s): +7% damage to poisoned foes
  • Projectile — Poison (5s): (1.0); -2% Healing Effectiveness
  • Whirl — Venomtouch (3s): +7% damage to poisoned foes

LIGHTNING

  • Leap — Unblockable (1½s): Your attacks are unblockable. (identical effect to that of Signet of Might)
  • Projectile — Sunderstrike (1½s): +15% Damage
  • Whirl — Area Superspeed (4s): Movement Speed is greatly increased (240 radius; 5 allies)

LIGHT

  • Blast — Healing Light (5s): +300 Healing Power; Remove 1 lesion stack from every condition which afflicts you and nearby allies (240 radius; 5 allies)
  • Projectile — Sunderstrike (1½s): +15% Damage
  • Whirl — Remove 1 lesion stack from every condition which afflicts you and nearby allies (240 radius; 5 allies)

ETHEREAL

  • Leap — Superspeed (3s): Movement Speed is greatly increased.
  • Projectile — Break Enemy Targeting
  • Whirl — Mirror (1s): Reflects incoming projectiles.

DARK

  • Blast — Area Slowed|5| (4s): -33% Movement Speed; -50% Swiftness Duration (240 radius; 5 targets)
  • Leap — Lifeleech (1½s): Heal for 20% of your outgoing damage
  • Projectile — Lifeleech (1½s): Heal for 20% of your outgoing damage
  • Whirl — Remove 1 boon from nearby foes (180 radius; 5 targets)

SMOKE

  • Blast — Stealth duration reduced from 3s to 1½s; now also grants Superspeed for 2s
  • Leap — Stealth duration reduced from 3s to 1½s; now also grants Superspeed for 2s
  • Projectile — Destroy Incoming Projectiles (1s)
  • Whirl — Evade: ½s

EXAMPLE WEAPON RE-DESIGN: RANGER SHORTBOW

[Splinter Shot] (1)
Activation: ¾s
Fire an arrow that splinters on impact, striking adjacent foes.

  • Number of targets: 3
  • Damage: (0.5)
  • Damage radius: 120
  • Range: 900

Current projectile speed reduced by 30%.

[Poison Volley] (2)
Activation: ¾s / Recharge: ½s
Fire a spread of three poison arrows.

  • Number of targets per arrow: 5
  • Damage per arrow: (0.5)
  • Poison|3| (6s) per arrow: (0.6); -20% Healing Effectiveness
  • Maximum Count: 3
  • Count Recharge: 12s
  • Pierces
  • Projectile Finisher
  • Range: 900

Each arrow counts as a Projectile Finisher.

[Quick Step] (3)
Activation: ¼s / Recharge: ½s

  • Leap backwards while evading attacks. Gain a speed boost when you land.
  • Evasion: ½s
  • Superspeed (3s): Movement Speed greatly increased
  • Swiftness (10s): 33% Movement Speed; +1% Skill Recharge Rate
  • Maximum Count: 2
  • Count Recharge: 20s
  • Leap range: 550

*Evasion leap is identical to the Engineer [Acid Bomb] leap.

[Crippling Volley] (4)
Activation: 1s / Recharge: 12s
Fire a trail of arrows that slows foes.

  • Number of targets: 5
  • Damage per volley: (0.75)
  • Slowed|3| (4s) per volley: -33% Movement Speed; -30% Swiftness Duration
  • Volley radius: 120
  • Pierces
  • Range: 900

Functions identically to Berserker [Scorched Earth] except that each field only strikes once before vanishing rather than lingering for any amount of time. However, [Crippling Volley] is not bound by the “Enemies are able to be struck by this skill only once every 0.5 seconds” mechanic.

[Concussion Shot] (5)
Activation: ½s / Recharge: 2s
Shock. Fire an arrow which dazes your target. If the target is at or above the lesion threshold, this attack inflicts vulnerability at close range.

  • Damage: (0.1)
  • Daze: ¾s
  • Lesion threshold: 12
  • Close Range Distance: 0-300
  • Close Range Vulnerability (5s): 20% Incoming Damage
  • Maximum Count: 2
  • Count Recharge: 30s
  • Range: 900

ALL-CLASS HEALING SKILL RE-WORK

The vast majority of healing skills in this game go entirely neglected. The ones which are picked are often the ones which objectively yield the most return for the least risk; this sort of paradigm often drags out fights and sometimes even negates an attacker's advantage in what is supposed to be an opponent's disadvantageous position (no healing skill should be able to directly turn the tide of battle; this is simply because it is a skill used when a player has already played poorly). What all of this means is that the healing skill slot is filled with either unfair abilities or bloat which nobody uses. Considering that if conditions were to receive a re-work, it would make sense for healing skills to be re-worked in a way which would complement the new condition system. A proper healing skill re-work would ideally be a more universal pool of generalized healing abilities to which all players would have access; an example pool of such skills would be limited and straightforward in their usage (with some abilities which might prioritize team support over direct, personal health restoration).

[Elixir of Health]
Activation: 1s / Recharge: 3s
Heal yourself and remove lesion stacks from every condition which afflicts you.

  • Healing: 6494 (1.0)
  • Lesions stacks removed per condition: 10
  • Maximum Count: 2
  • Count Recharge: 30s

[Withdraw]
Recharge: 6s
Evade backwards and remove lesion stacks from every condition which afflicts you. Afterward, you regain health over time.

  • Evade: ¾s
  • Lesions stacks removed per condition: 5
  • Withdraw (6s): Heal every second.
  • Healing per second: 880 (0.5)
  • Maximum Count: 2
  • Count Recharge: 50s

[Defy]
Activation: ¾s / Recharge: 3s
Blast the area and heal yourself. Remove lesion stacks from every condition which afflicts you.

  • Healing: 5560 (1.0)
  • Lesions stacks removed per condition: 5
  • Maximum Count: 2
  • Count Recharge: 40s
  • Combo Finisher: Blast

[Intervene]
Activation: ¾s / Recharge: 5s
Leap to the target area, heal yourself and remove lesion stacks from every condition which afflicts you. If another ally is present where you land, grant a barrier and remove additional lesion stacks from every condition afflicting allies in the area.

  • Leap Self Heal: 3865 (0.75)
  • Leap lesion stacks removed per condition: 5
  • Number of allies: 5
  • Area Barrier: 2428 (0.125)
  • Area lesion stacks removed per condition: 5
  • Radius: 180
  • Range: 600
  • Maximum Count: 2
  • Count Recharge: 45s
  • Combo Finisher: Leap

This skill's effects only trigger if the leap is successfully completed; the self-heal can be negated if the leap is either canceled mid-flight or interrupted.

[Sacred Glyph]
Activation: 1s / Recharge: 5s
Heal yourself and create field of healing light at the target location. Every interval, allies within the field lose lesion stacks from every condition which afflicts them.

  • Initial Self Heal: 3560 (0.5)
  • Number of allies: 5
  • Interval: 1s
  • Field Heal: 880 (0.125)
  • Field lesion stacks removed per condition: 2
  • Duration: 4s
  • Radius: 240
  • Maximum Count: 2
  • Count Recharge: 60s
  • Range: 900
  • Combo Field: Light

tl;dr:

  • 4 “Regular conditions” which focus on stacking debuffs rather than damage; all in-game damage scales with Power now.
  • 4 “Super Conditions” which serve as set-ups for bursts or defensive tactics.
  • Conditions made very scarce and confined—in small amounts—to select weapons. Either a weapon inflicts conditions or it doesn't (those that don't inflict conditions are more associated with high damage, generation of a single boon, mobility and/or control skills respectively).
  • Conditions in PvE now serve the role of party damage support without entirely compromising personal DPS (since all damage now scales off of the same stats).
  • Conditions in PvP are no longer obnoxious, but still allow for team-oriented play.
  • Conditions are now scarce enough that traits can get redesigns which play around striking foes with a certain condition or foes who have a certain number of condition stacks.
  • Speccing into conditions for group utility is as easy as equipping a weapon and maybe swapping out some utilities.
  • Resistance can go away forever.

AFTERTHOUGHTS

Dark, smoke, ethereal and ice fields really add nothing to the game. The excessive number of flavor-designed field types just end up diluting the potential interesting effects that any of them could have (which is why so many current finisher types have always been outright worthless and why fire and water fields are so over-valued). Ice is only relevant because of a single passive in a single (sub-par) profession line. Smoke is only relevant because of stealth (which was never a necessary mechanic in GW2). Dark and Ethereal are more or less indefensibly bad (Chaos Armor is just another reactive buff). After all, no game should consistently reward players for intentionally getting hit. That's just asking for trouble in PvP and whacko-scaled PvE encounters in which single hits can wipe out half of a player's HP.

Not every AoE needs to be a combo field. AoE spam is too easily accessible, and AoEs are far too big baseline.

The current light, chaos and shocking auras also don't really add anything respectively; they could all be deleted without any big loss, folded into other auras, or just made into skills for players to actively use (I realize that Shocking Aura is a skill, but it's a very bland skill and the fact that it is an aura at all despite having no real regular application or interesting effect of its own is pretty poor, overall design).

GW2 has far, far too many weapons and skills that sit around doing nothing. Given the opportunity, I would greatly reduce the number of complete weapon bar options for each class (including what is provided by specializations). That would cut back on all the bloat. Utilities, healing and elites could see equal reductions (it's not like we don't see consistent staple skills already).

The Boon system is as equally ludicrous as the current Condition system. It could stand to be culled down greatly to only a handful of intensity-stacking boons. What's worse is that every current boon aside from Might is just a duration-stacking passive effect: incredibly boring in design and application, and often frustrating to play against (not that Might is all that interesting either, but at least it has to stack in intensity in order to be optimally effective).

Auto-attacks as unique "skills” was a tremendous mistake which I'm honestly surprised even made it past pre-alpha.

Making three baseline healthpool groups which are so skewed apart from each other (11k, 15k, 19k) was a massive mistake. They ought to be more normalized (not necessarily equal, but definitely not so wildly disparate). Other skills can be balanced with such an adjustment in mind. It's just shuffling around numbers; nothing difficult.

This game really only needed 4 classes at most.

Comments

  • Tayga.3192Tayga.3192 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited April 7, 2019

    I vaguely read all of the text (skipped 1-2 skills and 5-10 lines at most), I'd say this system looks a lot less like GW2 and a lot more like mechanically D&D based games.

    You could make a new game, prioritizing combat, out of this and you would have a very detailed and solid combat system already. Thing is, I don't think we need that much change in combat of GW2.

    Small note: I 100% agree that there are lots of useless skills that should get rework/number changes.

  • Swagg.9236Swagg.9236 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited April 7, 2019

    @Tayga.3192 said:
    I vaguely read all of the text (skipped 1-2 skills and 5-10 lines at most), I'd say this system looks a lot less like GW2 and a lot more like mechanically D&D based games.

    You could make a new game, prioritizing combat, out of this and you would have a very detailed and solid combat system already. Thing is, I don't think we need that much change in combat of GW2.

    Small note: I 100% agree that there are lots of useless skills that should get rework/number changes.

    The only real, in-game difference between this system and the one that is currently featured in GW2 is in how players using this system would occasionally have to reference a target's status bar (beneath its HP bar) in order to gauge whether it would be worth it to use one, specific skill; that and maybe players would put more thought into which combo fields are on their skill bar (we might also get unique PvE roles like "Fire Aura buffer DPS ele," but that's mostly just theorycrafting). Point is, it only looks like something out of a tabletop because this game has more combo fields and passive effects (like auras) which are mostly just bloat right now (which begs the question of how many of them are really necessary in the first place). If they all had respective, worthwhile purposes, then collectively, they might be somewhat intimidating to the average GW2 player despite being rather intuitive to use and ultimately not a big deal to process on the fly during combat. Not a lot would probably change in the long-run outside of the fact that people could likely tank through condi damage in order to finish a risky play rather than worrying about instantly dying to 3 stacks of torment and 4 stacks of burning that someone applied within a half-second.

    However, I do write all of this knowing that there is a fat chance that GW2 will ever be anything more than the shallow, "action combat" MMO which it has always been. I appreciate you taking the time to read it, though.