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End of Dragons Elite Specialization Updates


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Hello, Tyrians! With Beta 4 right around the corner on November 30th, we want to give you an early look at the changes to the End of Dragons elite specializations based on feedback we collected from t

It is a massive shame that this is the solution you opted for from the feedback that was provided with respect to support Specter.   Without quickness, PvE support Specter has no real use be

I am extremely disappointed with what is happening with Virtuoso. I feel we've been ignored on a mass scale.  Issues of projectiles, issues with the F4 being too weak and virtuoso having no defense

The changes seem good so far, it's clear you are listening to feedback which is really appreciated.

 

Have you considered normalizing all profession's health bars to the same base health? It seems like health isn't taken into consideration when balancing a class. Ele has practically half or 2/3 the amount of health of other classes, there still isn't nearly enough inherent defensive help with the Catalyst to make up for that. The jade sphere changes overall look good, but I still don't see how Catalyst will be a steady bruiser in melee range.

The other major callout is that the grandmaster traits are all terrible. They should be build defining. No one will be maintaining 10 stacks of that buff in order to make use of the middle tier. The other two are not what grandmaster traits should be, they should actually impact the way you play. Perma stability is nice but not useful in most areas of the game, and an extra 50% to boon duration is fine, but again not grandmaster tier worthy. Compare to something like a Necro which is basically unkillable with the condi damage to health trait. That’s what this spec is missing in order to survive in melee range. 

Edited by The Great Al.2546
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On 11/23/2021 at 5:45 PM, Fire Attunement.9835 said:

2) Endless Night, by affecting three targets, was creating expected gameplay of manually selecting and 'rotating' between different targets in a group, in order to sustain quickness on multiple targets. This isn't very fun to do.

Specific changes made in response to this feedback: We'd rather not have Specter able to strongly cover both Alacrity and Quickness for groups, and so have decided to focus on the Alacrity aspect. Endless Night has been adjusted to only target one ally. This may maintain a strong all-around support role for a focused target in certain gameplay, such as 2v2 PvP or playing with a friend in the open world, while allowing Specter to still fill healing and alacrity support roles for group play.

 

It is a massive shame that this is the solution you opted for from the feedback that was provided with respect to support Specter.

 

Without quickness, PvE support Specter has no real use because the 10 person alacrity provided by Renegade and Mirage in 10 person content is too strong and Renegade remains far, far too useful in Fractals.

 

Support Specter needed to offer both quickness and alacrity in order to see a degree of play in either of these game modes because it does not provide sufficient other boons. This is a hugely disappointing change that really feels like you didn't bother to consider the changes of Specter in relation to what other elite specs can offer.

 

Worryingly, you've also not addressed the concerns people have expressed with single targeting of allies at all. Absolutely no mention of UI changes or such or even an acknowledgement that this is the most awkward part of support Specter. Couching the changes in the language of 2v2 gameplay is also very odd - this is an off-season gameplay mode in one area of the game. How does this single target healing supposedly work now in raids or Fractals? A Specter is still going to be wanting to target allies and apply Endless Night due to the strength relative to other (single target) heal skills.

 

If you want builds such as Willbender, Specter and Mechanist to see any play with alacrity sharing, you need to remove 10 person alacrity from both Mirage and Renegade if Willbender, Specter and Mechanist cannot also provide quickness, as per current Chronomancer (which already doesn't see much play as alacrity and quickness because 10 person alacrity is that good) .

Edited by Lucinellia.9247
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  • * Harbingers no longer passively drain Life Force to convert to health while injured and out of shroud.

I'm not sure how I feel about this.

On one hand, it was passive and disproportionately rewarding. On the other hand, it will now be more punishing to gain Blight despite having a way to remove it.

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Lots of nifty changes.  I'm looking forward to testing them next week.  I just hope I have time to sample each elite plus turtle, that's a lot 🙂

Oddly the post is claiming it was posted yesterday, not just now.  Forum shenanigans?

Edited by Donari.5237
Forum shenanigans include double entering between paragraphs. Removed an enter for space reasons.
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As said multiple time, I really liked a vaste majority of the changes, and thank you a lot for that ! ❤️

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3) The Vindicator perpetually feels like a hybrid and is difficult to specialize into a damage-dealing role.

That said, I would like to hear the design decision for the Greatsword of the Vindicator to not be hybrid damage ? I was waiting for the greatsword to come for so long, and, I don't mind Mace/Axe being mainly condition damage, but I would have love the Greatsword to deal some of them (hybride oriented)

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3) Elixirs are boring! Press button, get boon isn't enough for the base version of the skill, even if traits do let them do more.

Here, I would love one of the elixir to create a new minion.
You may already know, but just giving a new minion to the Reaper opened so much possibilities and team building !
So, if one of the elixir had that, for example applying a debuff on target, and on death dealing damage & summoning x new minion(s), that would be amazing !

But all of that is not the most important, but if in the end all of that gets implemented, I would love it by a loooooooooooot

Edited by neilug hyuga.5634
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On 11/23/2021 at 5:45 PM, Fire Attunement.9835 said:

Bug Fixes:

  • Lead Attacks: No longer reduces the cooldown of Shadow Shroud.
  • Siphon:  No longer requires a pathing check in order to execute.
  • Twilight Combo: The second attack of this ability is no longer jump-cancellable. 
  • Haunt Shot: Removed the odd smoke bomb that appeared at the specter's feet. Updated the ability to fire from the character's hand instead of head.
  • Swindler's Equilibrium: Now properly recharges Siphon.
  • Assassin's Reward: Now functions correctly with Scepter abilities.
  • Hidden Thief: Stealth now activates much quicker when using Siphon.


And absolutely no mention of the most glaring bug for support Specter - Measured Shot occasionally porting us absolutely miles away. It would be good to see this fixed since with this bug, no quickness and the awful UI, support Specter is an appallingly bad proposition.

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Making mechanist even simpler by binding one of the mech skills to the mace and removing another one isn't good. You made a change to decouple Untamed from the hammer so I'm not sure why that design philosophy is being reversed for Mechanist.

 

By far the biggest problem I had with the elite spec in beta 3 was that it's just too simple. It removes a huge amount of the engineer's utility in exchange for a passive and mostly uncontrollable mob. That's not bad in and of itself, but the lack of weapon swaps, heavy reliance on kits, and most core utilities being useless without their tool belt versions kills the elite specialization here. You have very few options for how to play, and what your character can do is severely reduced.

To really get down in the muck: Core engineer's weapons are too poor, and too few, and they can't swap weapons. Kits are mandatory for all specs in dps roles. It's the same case for mechanist. But if we don't want to run kits, we can't really substitute in any of the other core skills because without the tool belt they're virtually useless. One that especially stands out is elixirs: you can't support allies with them while playing as a mechanist because you lose all of the throw skills (despite harbinger now being able to drink and throw elixirs at the same time...?).

 

In a couple words: not fun. I don't care about numbers much because those can change easily. Unfortunately this is a deeper problem with core engineer and how heavily they rely on the tool belt and kits to make up for lackluster utility skills, weapon skills, and no weapon swap. As soon as you release an elite spec that replaces the tool belt, it breaks so many aspects of the core spec that it feels very empty. Your options are pretty much kits as a crutch for weapon skills, or signets because those are the only skills balanced to not have tool belt counterparts. The rest of the engi kit is borked.

And I think it bears repeating a second time: the fact that the mechanist has a clear build path for support, yet also blows away your ability to buff allies with elixirs which are dedicated support skills, should be an extreme red flag for design. It would seem natural for a support elite spec to lean into alchemy from the core profession, but that's just not an option here. Did nobody notice this and call it out? Doesn't this seem like an extremely odd decision?

Edited by Tulki.1458
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No changes to the terrible utilities of the Specter. No shroud skill touch-ups outside of Dawn's Repose. Still no self quickness on Endless Night. No changes to the utterly clunky need of targeting allies manually. What little cleave potential Specter had is now nerfed. But sure, make it focus on the one boon least useful on thief: Alacrity, when that doesn't even affect initiative.

Must be the fastest heavy handed thief nerf to date: well before release even.

 

 

Edited by Fenda.1398
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Man, part of me is going to miss the chaotic gameplay of Shoutsworn, spamming every ammo skill like a cracked chimp and topping healing on berserker amulet.

 

Pour one out for our fallen homie, Lush Forest.  You were too young to die, but too beautiful to live.

Edited by Rym.1469
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Unleashed changes will be a massive improvement, really actually substantive buffs happening there. Meanwhile, I literally do not understand why you do not understand how bad Virtuoso is and will be in anything but the most casual of open world PvE.

 

The feedback was overwhelming:

 

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"Give us more traits that actually do stuff and aren't just YOU GET BLADES, our shatter recharges are too long to use this many anyway."

 

Your response:

 

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"Have EVEN MORE BLADES THAN BEFORE and also we want you to shatter every 5 seconds for a paltry damage boost even though we again didn't change shatter recharges at all." "...oh and also we nerfed the damage coefficients on everything you have."

 

Just what??

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I am extremely disappointed with what is happening with Virtuoso. I feel we've been ignored on a mass scale. 

Issues of projectiles, issues with the F4 being too weak and virtuoso having no defense nor mobility to go with this and continually pushing a condi variant when it shouldn't exist in the first place... What is this?! 

Let mirage be the condi spec and bolster virtuoso's power and defensive options. 😐

It's really frustrating, I had hoped you would've heard us on how these issues make playing Virtuoso very problematic (especially the projectiles part) and found the majority of these changes to be so shallow. Anet, what are you even trying to make Virtuoso be? What is the flavor? It's a bit meh at everything (excluding dps numbers in pve only which were bound to be nerfed obviously so now that's gone). Virtuoso is a selfish dps with no utility and won't even compete as a dps alone. Will have no place in WvW too btw, 7th year of playing support chrono in large scale... I'm fed up.

Edited by Kitta.3657
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Was hoping for greater changes around the virtuoso being projectile locked (unusable in WvW) with no real damage payoff to compensate for it. It still falls well below DH, necro, and herald as a group DPS class and there's no additional utility outside of boon strips comparable to chrono. 

Projectiles need to be addressed or damage needs to go way up. 

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On 11/23/2021 at 6:45 PM, Fire Attunement.9835 said:

Key pieces of feedback that we identified were:

1) Consume Shadows was causing Shadow Shroud to feel like something you should enter

They identified the symptoms but completely dropped the ball on identifying the root cause of the issue. Going through the feedback thread it should have been apparent that the performance of the trait, in what it did, was never the issue as no one complained about it invalidating other healers. The complaint has always been that it "invalidated" other options on the spec which also have received their fair share of negative feedback even independent from Consume Shadows (none of which have been addressed by these changes) meaning that the issues were with the other options and not with Consume Shadows.

Other than that not much improvement for Specter here, the forced teleport on Measured Shot is still going to be anoying, Second Opinion is still going to be comically bad and uninspired (especially for a weapon related trait) and Shadow Shroud is still going to feel extremely sluggish (especially for something you want to put on thief) and lackluster as scepter is still going to be significantly more useful for the vast majority of gameplay situations.

 

Edited by Tails.9372
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I am excited to try these changes but the Virtuoso is still severely limited by not having any access to unblockable attacks and projectile blocking just hard counters their entire kit. Also enough with the condi traitline! Just let it be a power dps and let mirage be the condi spec.

 

Harbinger sounds a lot more active now except for the GM traits are still a very passive and boring set of traits. I don’t see this spec playing very differently depending on which GM trait you take. Just like with Virt, the power line on this spec seems irrelevant when reaper exists.

 

I am cautiously optimistic for Vindicator! Let’s see if it’s actually worth playing now.

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