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Questions about balance patch

Joao.3410Joao.3410 Member ✭✭

First of all, I’m not sure I understand the purpose of this patch. Devs are lowering damage coefficients and nerfing healing. Doesn’t that bring us back to square one in terms of time to kill? But at the same time we’re throwing 7 years worth of skill balance out the window? If time to kill is a concern wouldn’t tweaking base armor and HP stats achieve that without breaking game balance?

Secondly, a lot of the balance changes that I recall since launch have been about lowering cooldowns but shortening their effects to make combat more fluid. Increasing cooldowns significantly seems to be working against this design and will make the game lethargic.

Lastly, wouldn’t it be better for the devs to focus on balancing what’s making combat not fun in the game mode, namely “combat inhibiting mechanics” such as stealth, mounts, excessive mobility (run away, get out of combat, and re-engage) etc?

Comments

  • Dawdler.8521Dawdler.8521 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Joao.3410 said:
    Secondly, a lot of the balance changes that I recall since launch have been about lowering cooldowns but shortening their effects to make combat more fluid. Increasing cooldowns significantly seems to be working against this design and will make the game lethargic.

    What?

    This has never ever been the case. I cant remember once Anet shortening any cooldowns with a "make combat more fluid" excuse. At best they introduced the ammo system to multi-charge skills. Otherwise its quite the contrary, Anet hits the cooldowns the hardest as a simple means to - in their mind - balance it, rather than changing the functionality of skills. We've even had to scream at the top of our lungs to stop them from increasing cds to ridiculous levels, sometimes they change their minds and sometimes they still do it anyway which this patch is literal proof of. Consider especially HoT and PoF release cooldowns vs the cooldowns we have now.

    Dont look a gift Asura in the mouth.
    No seriously, dont. Shark teeth.

  • Unfortunately that’s what anet believes “balance” is.

    There’s been quiete a few discussions about what balance really means, and the objective truth is that balance is impossible to achieve. In order for two things to be completely balanced, they must be exactly the same. If two choices are the same then they aren’t real choices.

    That’s why simple buffs and nerfs will NEVER balance the game. One thing will always be better than the other...and one thing will always be worse than the other.

    Many people here think that this patch is meant to fix power creep, but many people don’t realize what powercreep really entails. What this patch is really addressing is “TTK” or time to kill, which should in theory, slow down the pace of the game...

    this is fine conceptually...however, balancing skills into mediocrity by standardizing everything is the wrong path to take...because again true balance is impossible to attain. What will happen is people will be forced into choices that are either the same, or so meager that there really is no choices left to pick from and the meta will become even more stale because min max will have a tighter constraint. This means that if something is even SLIGHTLY better than something else it will be the meta.

  • ilMasa.2546ilMasa.2546 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 13, 2020

    To let you understand the minds behind these changes:

    Engi:
    They made the Function gyro a toolbelt skill - defacto removing all the other f5 from any of your ultimate. (noone asked for it)
    Because of that,they moved Detection pulse (remove stealth) from being on Sneak Gyro to Utility Goggles (for the moment,cos they changed the position several times) (noone asked for it)

    Engineers asking to anet: can you rework turrets since they are lackluster?!
    Anet: sure let me just remove things where they worked fine to place them back on things WE feels lackluster and noone use anyway.But hey you get to weaponswap out of combat only cos we understand rightclicking things in your inventory (while out of combat) is annoying. #priorities

    In short: there is nothing to understand.Save your mental health.

  • My understanding was coefficients were being adjusted mostly. I took that mean things like clicking a trait button and getting double damage burn guard + burning sigils + 25% boost to all DMG at range = 300% - 400%

    Stuff like that.

  • DemonSeed.3528DemonSeed.3528 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @DanAlcedo.3281 said:
    We want to throw out 7 years worth of powercreep out the window.

    It's also basically another way of not admitting or saying that they messed up balance to the point of no return.

  • Junkpile.7439Junkpile.7439 Member ✭✭✭

    I don't understand how this affects powercreep. My core ele die in second even if some holosmith make 30% less damage. :#

    Low quality trolling since launch
    Seafarer's Rest EotM Hero

  • @Dawdler.8521 said:

    @Joao.3410 said:
    Secondly, a lot of the balance changes that I recall since launch have been about lowering cooldowns but shortening their effects to make combat more fluid. Increasing cooldowns significantly seems to be working against this design and will make the game lethargic.

    What?

    This has never ever been the case. I cant remember once Anet shortening any cooldowns with a "make combat more fluid" excuse. At best they introduced the ammo system to multi-charge skills. Otherwise its quite the contrary, Anet hits the cooldowns the hardest as a simple means to - in their mind - balance it, rather than changing the functionality of skills. We've even had to scream at the top of our lungs to stop them from increasing cds to ridiculous levels, sometimes they change their minds and sometimes they still do it anyway which this patch is literal proof of. Consider especially HoT and PoF release cooldowns vs the cooldowns we have now.

    My memory is a bit hazy since it has been 7 years and I’m too lazy to look everything up, but I recall many skills have had their cooldowns reduced since launch such as berserker stance, stone signet, contemplation of purity, retreat, all 4 ele cantrips. There are probably more but I don’t remember them off the top of my head. I guess one can call it power creep, but all classes got the same treatment across the board so it seems fair and the gameplay is a lot livelier with the lower cooldowns. I’m not sure if people would enjoy combat as much if we went back to long cooldowns and 5 minute cooldowns on passive traits. > @TinkTinkPOOF.9201 said:

    @DanAlcedo.3281 said:
    We want to throw out 7 years worth of powercreep out the window.

    This.

    It has not been 7 years of balance. It has been 7 years of powercreep for the PvE and raid side of the game, while balance for WvW is an after thought if thought of at all. I really am starting to think that people have all this time thought that WvW/PvP actually had a balance team and had no idea they actually did not exist for years.

    Also OP, if you read the patch notes, you will notice that stealth, mobility etc that you mention are all getting nerfed as well. As for mounts, in the balance thread, the balance team already stated that they think the mount is to powerful and that changes will be coming, however the current patch notes are about skill balance. There are many more patches to come and on a much shorter release cycle. This up coming patch is a reset to baseline, with modifications to come as they KNOW new OP metas will come from it once people start experimenting with new builds and the much, much shorter release cycle will allow them to bring those back in line with the rest of the classes.

    Maybe I missed it, but I think I only saw the deadeye elite and the shadow arts minor getting a 1 second nerfs? I’m not sure if that solves anything since thief still has so many ways to apply stealth through weapons. I think the problem with stealth isn’t just limited to thief but the mechanic as a whole is broken. The ability to de-target making you almost un-hittable unless your opponent has a radial or ground marking AOE is too strong. Stealth also gives the user such a huge advantage in terms of positioning and often gaining a free hit coming back out of stealth. It feels like the stealth user is stopping and restarting the fight at will.

  • subversiontwo.7501subversiontwo.7501 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 13, 2020

    @Joao.3410 said:
    First of all, I’m not sure I understand the purpose of this patch. Devs are lowering damage coefficients and nerfing healing. Doesn’t that bring us back to square one in terms of time to kill? But at the same time we’re throwing 7 years worth of skill balance out the window? If time to kill is a concern wouldn’t tweaking base armor and HP stats achieve that without breaking game balance?

    I believe you said it yourself, I think you are misunderstanding some of the purposes of the patch.

    TTK is certainly one aspect of it, but only one.

    Another aspect, directly linked to TTK, is to revalue stats. There have been so many changes to traits that they in many ways trumph gear by now. The low TTK also means that predominantly the offensive traits are obscuring the defensive gear, making it rather pointless to build into a balance of gear. On many classes tanky gear alone doesn't make you tanky or balanced gear only makes you offensively weaker so most classes are relying more on traits and special utilities (like immunities) to be their defense. On the flipside, once you find a build that can combine tanky stats with traits and effects those builds are becomming unusually tanky in the existing norms or environment but not necessarily overly tanky in a larger persepctive. Anyway, the point is that there is alot of inbetween or balanced choices that are made redundant by the power balance or power levels.

    Next, there is ease of balance. Over time alot of traits and abilities in the game has seen a compounding of effects. That tends to make things more and more difficult to balance and can often be seen in how shortcuts need to be taken instead of grinding out the balance. Things like Shadow meld or Winds of Disenchantment are examples of both where one new mechanic is stacked upon an existing mechanic, adding complexity to future balance - while also being an example of things created because existing balance/counter-balance had begun stacking out of hand (so the issues were solved with new hardcountering mechanics because going through the balance piece by piece was such a much larger project). Changes that are now being done and should help the game designers do better balancing going forward.

    Tied to the issue of creep or compounding effects on abilities is also performance. It's always difficult to talk about how much these things impact performance but they do at least impact both servers and clients to some degree. If the norm in vanilla was 1-3 effects comming out of one ability or push of a button and the PoF norm is 3-6 for every button pushed you can then consider the frequency of mashing and the scale of WvW and see why there are potential issues with just stacking effects upon ability after ability and creeping the power up.

    All of these combine to explain why they are choosing to shave down abilities, traits and effects rather than just bumping up stats from gear.

  • Bezerker.2379Bezerker.2379 Member ✭✭✭

    Er. Does anyone not remember the HoT days where we begged them to kill bunker builds and high sustain and to decrease TTK?

    PoF and all of its powercreep stemmed from years of people kitten about cele ele and bunker druid.

  • subversiontwo.7501subversiontwo.7501 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 13, 2020

    @Bezerker.2379 said:
    Er. Does anyone not remember the HoT days where we begged them to kill bunker builds and high sustain and to decrease TTK?

    PoF and all of its powercreep stemmed from years of people kitten about cele ele and bunker druid.

    I remember the HoT days quite well but I certainly don't remember any "we" who complained about those two things. Were the "we" possibly you and a friend of yours?

    Druid had some roaming builds that had a bit of an overabundance of stealth resets in combination with self heals without having to invest too heavily in Hpwr. It had some balance issues and those were adressed over not too much of a time. It was not the most alarming balance issue nore did it see the most widespread use. In many ways it was quite similar the Soulbeast builds we've seen recently (eg., boonbeast builds). Are there some (potential-) issues with them? Sure, but they are hardly the most alarming problem or overly noticable in a sea of thieves or the crazy stacking of certain classes at larger scale.

    Cele Tempest I don't remember much complaints about at all tbh.

    HoT also did not have a tanky meta throughout its life cycle. Initially it had alot of power burst too with Revenants, then more of a boon/tank meta, then more of another power burst meta (more melee) and then more of a condi meta that culminated with the oneshot epi ridiculousness. It went through all of those phases (possibly more) in its life cycle, a cycle which was still shorter than PoF. PoF only recently started to slip out of its release-day balance issues. PoF which also re-introduced condi pirateship stuff before the old problems had barely started to settle down.

    At larger scale HoT had nothing akin to the ridiculous use of 50%+ of a single class/build either. Nothing that even remotely compares to PoF even in the original phase of Pirateships and Rev stacking.

  • @Joao.3410 said:
    First of all, I’m not sure I understand the purpose of this patch. Devs are lowering damage coefficients and nerfing healing. Doesn’t that bring us back to square one in terms of time to kill? But at the same time we’re throwing 7 years worth of skill balance out the window? If time to kill is a concern wouldn’t tweaking base armor and HP stats achieve that without breaking game balance?

    It's pretty much the same except you won't end up with some weird sideeffects.

    Secondly, a lot of the balance changes that I recall since launch have been about lowering cooldowns but shortening their effects to make combat more fluid. Increasing cooldowns significantly seems to be working against this design and will make the game lethargic.

    They're trying to make it less spammy, I don't quite agree with all of the cooldown changes, but some skills can't really be fixed without a complete rework, which might be even less liked.

    Lastly, wouldn’t it be better for the devs to focus on balancing what’s making combat not fun in the game mode, namely “combat inhibiting mechanics” such as stealth, mounts, excessive mobility (run away, get out of combat, and re-engage) etc?

    This patch actually specifically helps with those problems
    stealth/excessive mobility builds are generally the builds that focus on bursting
    Burst>Disengage if burst fails>Reengage with burst will be less effective next patch.

  • Infusion.7149Infusion.7149 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 13, 2020

    I think you should reread the opening post from Cal Cohen (cmc) , the developer behind this initiative. Essentially the first concern is increasing time to kill. Ironically nothing about food/keep bonuses has been mentioned, but the general gist of it is that by increasing the time to kill and lower healing accordingly it makes condi more attractive as an alternative to high power damage.
    The second major goal is focusing skills on their intent: i.e. a skill shouldn't be doing many things at once especially if it has hard CC on it. That's why skills such as Drop the Hammer or Bulls' Charge had huge coefficient cutdowns.

  • Gwaihir.1745Gwaihir.1745 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @displayname.8315 said:
    My understanding was coefficients were being adjusted mostly. I took that mean things like clicking a trait button and getting double damage burn guard + burning sigils + 25% boost to all DMG at range = 300% - 400%

    Stuff like that.

    Huh? Are you saying theres some passive trait that does this? Also what gives double damage burning I don't see it. I think you are confusing duration with damage multiplier. At range? Aren't burn guard heavily melee based? Theres so much stuff like that and more that doesn't make sense with the post here.

    Shield of Wrath: Reduced the cooldown of this skill from 36 seconds to 35 seconds.

    Quality balance changes^TM

  • Swagger.1459Swagger.1459 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Joao.3410 said:
    First of all, I’m not sure I understand the purpose of this patch. Devs are lowering damage coefficients and nerfing healing. Doesn’t that bring us back to square one in terms of time to kill? But at the same time we’re throwing 7 years worth of skill balance out the window? If time to kill is a concern wouldn’t tweaking base armor and HP stats achieve that without breaking game balance?

    Secondly, a lot of the balance changes that I recall since launch have been about lowering cooldowns but shortening their effects to make combat more fluid. Increasing cooldowns significantly seems to be working against this design and will make the game lethargic.

    Lastly, wouldn’t it be better for the devs to focus on balancing what’s making combat not fun in the game mode, namely “combat inhibiting mechanics” such as stealth, mounts, excessive mobility (run away, get out of combat, and re-engage) etc?

    I want to help you understand!

    https://en-forum.guildwars2.com/discussion/96750/balance-patch-preview-wvw

    “This patch is unusual in that it’s more about establishing a new paradigm than it is a regular balance update”

  • Stand The Wall.6987Stand The Wall.6987 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 14, 2020

    damage outpaces healing by a lot, and not all builds rely on healing.

    not a lot of people like increasing cooldowns. anet said that they want cds to be "felt". nerfing damage and increasing stun break cds means one step forwards and step backwards.

    that would require power which the current competitive balance team doesn't have. not all people agree on that, and as for me i'm pretty content with damage nerfs.

    Te lazla otstara.

  • Justine.6351Justine.6351 Member ✭✭✭✭

    The update is meant to reduce the need to dodge so the non-existent new people can get into wvw and spvp while having a safe space.

    So that is me being salty because yeah there are new people, watch any roaming vid in the past 6 months and you will see them.

    Kk that was me being salty too. This update is meant to reduce necessary experience and reaction time to play what feels like effectively. It is somewhat of a fair thing to do as long time people grew with the "powercreep". New people are just thrown into the meat grinder keeping them away.

    Will this work? Idk maybe in 2 years when those new people rebuild wvw?

    Anet buff me :-(
    Make me good at game!

  • @Justine.6351 said:
    snips

    actually, justine, its so tough guys like myself can face tank hits and feel important. holy trinity here I come!

    Te lazla otstara.

  • RedShark.9548RedShark.9548 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Gwaihir.1745 said:

    @displayname.8315 said:
    My understanding was coefficients were being adjusted mostly. I took that mean things like clicking a trait button and getting double damage burn guard + burning sigils + 25% boost to all DMG at range = 300% - 400%

    Stuff like that.

    Huh? Are you saying theres some passive trait that does this? Also what gives double damage burning I don't see it. I think you are confusing duration with damage multiplier. At range? Aren't burn guard heavily melee based? Theres so much stuff like that and more that doesn't make sense with the post here.

    There is no trait that doubles burn dmg, not even sure what that 300-400% is supposed to mean.

    The burn dh is mostly range-midrange, trying to tag as many ppl as fast as possuble to trigger f1 passive as much as you can, no melee required for that.

    On topic: lowering the dmg means you actually have the time to heal, with current healing numbers you wouldnt be able to kill anyone, so they lowered that too.
    Boons same thing as heals.

    So now you dont instantly die and actually have time to counterplay your enemy, leading to hopefully better fights than just "who gets burst first off to oneshot his opponent"

    Cooldowns increased so you cant just roll your face over the keyboard and actually have to make decisions when to use which skill-> player skill has a bigger impact on a fight.

    Mobility and stealth were already addressed (its not the final patch btw, they made it clear that they will balance patch more frequently in the future)

    They also said that they will look at mount.

  • Acheron.4731Acheron.4731 Member ✭✭✭✭

    You can do balance changes all you want but if there are no new elite specs, no new weapons, no great change in skill options it is all moot. People are just gonna get tired of things like they already have.
    But, hey, new gemstore items, yayyyyy, the game will go on forever now.

    Don't Worry, My Dutch is OK

  • Justine.6351Justine.6351 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Stand The Wall.6987 said:

    @Justine.6351 said:
    snips

    actually, justine, its so tough guys like myself can face tank hits and feel important. holy trinity here I come!

    Hey look the snowman boy is back !

    Anet buff me :-(
    Make me good at game!

  • Klypto.1703Klypto.1703 Member ✭✭✭

    This "balance" patch is mostly about making it where it strictly boils down the choices and diversity of what is played in wvw. For example there are tons of players now that cannot fight their way out of a wet paper bag so anything that can kill them outside the safety of their blob or very slowly destroy their blob will be removed from game play in wvw. Which you can directly attribute it as well to any kind of havoc or roaming scenario its meant to completely remove it from the game mode but what they don't understand is lots of players have invested time and currencies into both large and small scale combat in this game mode so what happens is an already stagnant game mode where anet is so out of touch with their game that they don't understand the people who have stayed loyal to the game and the game mode they are caving into trolls for the most part who do not even play the game much less the game mode. So in the end I doubt their will be much of anyone playing this game mode after the balance comes.

    In any voice comms and squad chats people are like where are the roamers and the havoc guilds why isn't anything flipping lol. I mean you request the kind of kitten they are doing but expect the same results by completely killing off classes specs that are already handicapped by design its just going to result in losing more players. If no ones noticed there hasn't really been any new guilds coming about anymore so losing any veteran wvw player is detrimental to the game mode but I guess it will be all about living with the consequences. So any time you complain about a class or play style think about how you benefit from it as well as it being used against you because every class/spec has purposes but when you move to get them eliminated your cutting off your own life line to elements needed in wvw.

  • Jski.6180Jski.6180 Member ✭✭✭✭

    I realty think numbers are not the best chose to go after for a balance i think its the number of effects from each skill that the real problem. The power creep from HoT was not the dps boost but the fact that you added in healing as a real class roll. The power creep from PoF was the adding of more boons that simply end counter game play rules up to that point.

    Anet may need to sit down and ask them self what is the point of a skill and how it relates to the class and its roll in a team and to cut every thing about that skill that dose not "fit" its use (a dps skill should not also being ccing or healing etc..) or does not doable up in its effect use of that roll (and dps skill should not be doing dps ontop of adding more dps).

    See ELE forms and you will get my views.

  • @Joao.3410 said:
    Maybe I missed it, but I think I only saw the deadeye elite and the shadow arts minor getting a 1 second nerfs? I’m not sure if that solves anything since thief still has so many ways to apply stealth through weapons. I think the problem with stealth isn’t just limited to thief but the mechanic as a whole is broken. The ability to de-target making you almost un-hittable unless your opponent has a radial or ground marking AOE is too strong. Stealth also gives the user such a huge advantage in terms of positioning and often gaining a free hit coming back out of stealth. It feels like the stealth user is stopping and restarting the fight at will.

    Much of the stealth is getting indirect nerfs, as many skills are seeing ini cost increase, meaning they can spam less skills, including the mobility skills like deaths retreat, withdraw, etc. Smoke Screen (25sec to 45sec), Shadow Meld, Concealing Restoration, etc saw CD increases. Not saying high stealth uptime or perm uptime still wont be possible, it does mean they have to give up more to do it. Time will tell if those are enough, however some people will not be happy until it is totally removed. While I am not fond of the mechanic, it doesn't bother me that much, however the perm stealth builds we have now need to go.

    Something else to keep in mind, with some of the pretty big dmg nerfs to thief as well and base HP for everyone not changing, that means one shots from stealth should not really be a thing anymore unless you are running pure glass as well. Along with those reductions, that means the thief will need to be out of stealth much longer to do the same dmg. Not saying this will be perfect, the down side is that if specced for high stealth, the stealth they do have will be more powerful due to the nerfs in spike dmg across the board as well as defensive skills, I think it will make those high stealth up time builds even harder to kill, though less of a threat in a fight, however as a map roaming camp flipper, or hiding in keeps etc it might end up being untouchable. As those builds are all about avoiding other players and getting around the map, not taking on fights you can't win right away.

    "When you power creep the game and make it so that spam gameplay is nearly as effective as deep knowledge and nuance, the quality of players will decrease." -Exedore

  • @Gwaihir.1745 said:

    @displayname.8315 said:
    My understanding was coefficients were being adjusted mostly. I took that mean things like clicking a trait button and getting double damage burn guard + burning sigils + 25% boost to all DMG at range = 300% - 400%

    Stuff like that.

    Huh? Are you saying theres some passive trait that does this? Also what gives double damage burning I don't see it. I think you are confusing duration with damage multiplier. At range? Aren't burn guard heavily melee based? Theres so much stuff like that and more that doesn't make sense with the post here.

    Amplified wrath 15%, Fiery wrath +7%, +15% distance bonus (people move in and out, especially when trying to heal), another +7% flame rune. Durations are a big deal if you don't have perma cleanse on everyone.

    A lot of this is a full DMG increase to all hits including power as a side effect, and also you get crit % and ferocity bonuses as passive bundles.

    Don't know if its DMG + (DMGx0.45) but it sure feels compounding.

    Just a quick look thru the version history of the gear/traits show how the changes were % increases. Probably worked well when grinding thru increasing pve content. Its down to a couple ticks in wvw.

  • @Justine.6351 said:
    Hey look the snowman boy is back !

    ouch. being called boy hurts my sensitive ego. but yeah apparently polls are all powerful and touchy; if you poll them, they will let you know thru unholy retribution.

    Te lazla otstara.