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Weaponmaster Training Beta Feedback: Elementalist


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Posted (edited)
18 hours ago, scerevisiae.1972 said:

the biggest piece of feedback i can give is that pistol is a poor thematic fit for Elementalist. Like... the worst of all the weapons possible.

 

Axe, greatsword, mace, longbow, shortbow = fine

rifle/pistol = not fine.

but as long as it's actually a ranged weapon this time, i'll deal with it.

Funny that all of the ūüėē¬†votes occurred in US time, of course americans think guns belong in a magic/fantasy game on a magic class :rollseyes:¬†:sigh:

 

Agree that pistol is a poor fit for Elementalist.

Edited by giblets.6401
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Sword tempest was super fun to play and felt really dynamic and strong in open world content. Unfortunately in tough content it didn't feel as strong as main-hand dagger. DPS didn't get as high, especially in air attunement. I'ma still keep playing it though because it's awesome.

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Hello GW2 Dev team! First off, I'd like to say how great the recent announcements have been, and how much I'm looking forward to the shake-up. I'm quite happy with the addition of pistol (and understand that any 1 weapon on ele requires waaay more skills to be created/balanced. So just main hand is fine).

For this beta I've been really enjoying using hammer on tempest. I think it fits the play style really well and having the orbs spinning while overloading is fun! It isn't hitting huge dps or anything but great for open world.

My main concern now is warhorn. It looks like warhorn will be used in every "meta" build. It is currently doing great DPS on weaver (although most of that is on a huge hit box, still good but a lot less on small hitbox). In addition, warhorn earth 4 is very strong for any quick/alac build. Whether it be heal or dps.

I personally think warhorn should be a support weapon. I'd suggest reducing its dmg slightly and/or buffing the other offhand options (dagger/focus).

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Posted (edited)
22 hours ago, Forgotten Legend.9281 said:

my main's PvE build hasn't changed practically since HoT came out: staff + marauder stats + tempest overloads, + glyphs. and you nerfed glyphs (no cooldown reduction) 

They reduced the CD of all the glyphs to the same amount the trait did when they removed the trait. They didn't nerf them.

Edit: wait, I might be thinking of signets. Will have to double check.
Edit 2: Yes, it was signets. Disregard this.

Edited by A Magical Cow.8176
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Here is my report for this BETA,

Synergy between ‚ÄėHammer‚Äô and ‚ÄėWeaver‚Äô is perfect because you pulse a lot of damage around you from orbs Hammer which is what ‚ÄėPrimodial stance‚Äô already does. The best part is that you also have barrier appliance with Hammer 4 earth which pairs with ‚ÄėStone Resonance‚Äô and ‚ÄėArmor of earth‚Äô. Super cool stuff !! ūüôā


I also tested out ‚ÄėCatalyst‚Äô with sword / focus which does a good job to keep up the quickness throw earth 4 of warhorn boon extension. Skill 5 air warhorn also makes recharge instantly full energy IF you don‚Äôt have any orb field in use‚Ķ sadly range of the sword is not that good and makes dagger main hand better tho.

BUG: ‚ÄėElemntal Celerity‚Äô doesn‚Äôt reduce recharge of sword / warhorn skills.

 

Keep up se good work arena net ! ‚̧ԳŹ¬†

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I mainly play catalyst {for big funny hammer} and here are my thoughts on hammer in the other specs:

Overall: I would like to see other aspects leak into the main element specialization tree's. Skill cooldowns were, in general, too long for the hammer skills on other specs. This resulted in waiting for everything but your auto attack to be off cooldown. All builds are close melee builds so still no significant ranged option. The elite specialization tree feels insignificant to your power at any time.

Tempest:

Pros: Long channel attack for when your rotation is messed up which helps skills recharge faster

Cons: Long skill cooldown for skills 6-9, very low mobility and damage mitigation, shouts have 30 sec cooldown

the one that makes the most sense to me. It's not too different in terms of the catalyst normal rotations except  less survivable. It's much more difficult to get your auras naturally so most of you defensive options are from your skill 6 and an optional other one.  Seeing the alternative way for creating auras in earth specialization was cool, but it didn't create auras as often as needed for a glass cannon like ele.

 

Weaver:

Pros: mixed elements create an orb of both elements (you only get the orbs if that element isn't on cooldown), very similar to normal catalyst play in terms of rotation speed

Cons: to go back to a pure element there's a cooldown, which makes it easy to move when you don't want to if you aren't paying attention (air hammer 4 or water hammer 4), stances don't help maintain or create auras

This one is fun to play, but a bit mechanically challenging for a standard audience. The biggest draw for me to playing catalyst was its general utility. Cata is able to buff yourself and your team, and mitigate damage for you and your team. This version can't do either; it's a dps that doesn't have enough additional buffs to really help when fighting. A light breeze will kill you and you do the damage of a wet noodle.

 

Core has all of the above problems and more. It's not worth using a hammer on core.

 

 

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13 hours ago, A Magical Cow.8176 said:

They reduced the CD of all the glyphs to the same amount the trait did when they removed the trait. They didn't nerf them.

Edit: wait, I might be thinking of signets. Will have to double check.
Edit 2: Yes, it was signets. Disregard this.

i'm REAL good at neverminding! :classic_biggrin:

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Beta feedback:

TBH i think it's a huge let-down compared to an expac with elite spec, especially when catalyst (hammer) was such a letdown and IMO there is a lot of potential "design space" left for Ele in particular. Unlocked elite spec weapons strikes me as a very lazy way of introducing new content and given other "lazy" content like generation 3 legendaries turning out to be merely expensive genstore skins,  frankly I fear for the longevity of the game.

 

Pros:

  • novelty value of trying something new
  • more weapon choices always going to be better than fewer¬†¬†¬†

 

Cons

  • a lot of clunkiness and/or wackiness, e.g.:
    • hammer has no native fields, so its blasts and leaps feel wasted,
    • hammer dual skills are just the orbs when paired with weaver, which works really poorly when cycling through elements¬†
  • all of Ele's elite specs were given melee range weapons so not much really changed for Ele - if you want to play a ranged caster you're still using a sceptre or staff.

 

More than anything, beta weekend has highlighted for me again what a terrible idea it was to make hammer another melee weapon, so i really struggled to find anything to get excited about, as i prefer ranged.

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For me personally I play hammer on ele for the combo spheres and the defensive mitigation. The current hammer builds have neither so you don't get catalyst's benefit or the benefit of the chosen Elite spec. 

 

Ele DEFINATELY needs a ranged option. I feel like a longbow makes the most sense because it already exists (conjure frostbow) and is really fun to play. The changes to it I would make are buffing damage from the auto attack and having at least 1 AOE for easy CC in PVP or WvW situation.

 

Pistol can be cool, I'm imagining pistol and dagger will be the meta combo for movement (because ele is also lacking in that department) Ranged weapons can work fairly well with the existing Elite specs so I'm intrigued by what the new one will bring that's special.

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I feel like this post applies to most if not all classes, but while opening up the weapon options is a fun and cool first step. I am personally not seeing the reason to use an elite spec weapon without its accompanying elite spec. I feel like there's a few ways to go about this:

1. Tweak the core trait lines to bring the elite spec weapons under their purview as well, that way we can get similar bonuses for the elite spec weapons when we choose to opt out of the elite spec's trait line.

2. The elite spec weapons should get different skills when using trait lines that aren't the elite spec trait line.

 

Both of these are non-trivial, but just giving us the weapons with little reason to use them is almost a little too trivial.

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The elementalist needs to access to viable ranged playstyle as it should be as a scholar class, it's more than time, that's for sure.

Like many players, I think the long bow should be part of weapon sets of the elementalist in this regard, besides it would be appropriate conceptually speaking since this class masters the 4 elements of nature, nature and bow but in a elementally magical way could be a ranged thing. For its part, the elementalist staff could use a great update, possibly a revamping.

Now speaking of a particular element, the water looks way too inoffensive while it could allow causing phenomenon such as tsunami, pressure water, bubbles and many possibilities (as shown with the Nagas in EoD) while keeping its healing ability, this element is sadly underrated regarding damages.

Also, another suggestion for the new expansion, why not introducing the orbs as a ranged weapon for the elementalist? We're seeing it on the wallpapers and concepts of SotO, and since the wizards appear to be more elementalist than anything else, well maybe that could be an opportunity.

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Posted (edited)

D/D cata is still far more superior to sword/D cata cause of dmg and auras. Kinda disappointed with sword CD's they have like 30% more cd than dagger.

Ele needs something new except pistol main hand, we need axe/axe or longbow with that, we have less choices of weapons than any other class(maybe engie).

Edited by Ragnarox.9601
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Posted (edited)
28 minutes ago, j ray.6208 said:

I know it's probably not on the table, but with all of these new options, it would be great to allow weapon swapping.

before hammer/EOD i would have said no, but with _all_ of Ele's elite spec weapons turning out to be melee (:sad:), i don't think it's a bad way to go actually.

another alternative might be to make conjures like engie kits, the drop and pickup model just sucks.

Edited by scerevisiae.1972
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So after trying out the weapons I think I managed make some good combinations.

Sword/Warhorn on Tempest has some good overlap as both sword and overloads need to be in melee range with a nice mixture of fields, leaps and blasts. Hammer feels so much more natural on Weaver than it did on Catalyst (mostly because not using it in tandem with f5). Using hammer 3 (which while all functionally the same dual skills does streamline them for easy use) with Primordial Stance and Weaver Elite is quite fun with this playstyle. Also playing Sword/Dagger on Catalyst works really well. Using other weapons period on Catalyst makes for a much easier time to make use of the aura trait lines when there is more access to fields and aura skills that allow them trigger. Yes Hammer has leaps and whirls but are completely dependent on spheres/other people to make work.

There is a few bugs though. For Jade spheres the trait for air (in both beta/non characters) still says the boon is quickness but the actual skill and boon effect is fury. Elemental Celerity also does not remove the recharge for sword.

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Gonna drop some notes on the testing/findings I did and some thoughts. As a preface, most of my testing this beta for Elementalist was from a solo play perspective, but it still let me get a feel for each weapon combo.

Catalyst: 

Sword/warhorn -

This had a middle-ground effect for me, it wasn't the best of the best, but it was a nice thematic and worked well for having a lot of healing and evasion. I have a feeling it could be better once I've fully fleshed a rotation out and got very comfortable with sword skills as right now I haven't used sword all that much. Warhorn is so much fun on Catalyst, it gives you might/fury extension, extra boon coverage while solo and then boon extension which makes keeping up 25 might, resolution, vigor, fury, swiftness, quickness and protection easy which all those boons solo is really potent. The magnetic aura on Sand Squall is also beneficial for extra Elemental Empowerment stacks.

  • Really nice evasions frames in water and in earth meaning you have evasion across a couple of attunements.
  • Boon extension from warhorn which perfectly plays into all the boons you can provide as a Catalyst.
  • Enough energy building to allow for a 4-sphere deployment rotation, something only hammer has exclusively been able to do, so this is very refreshing!

Scepter/warhorn -

Easily my favourite set. This achieved the highest damage as well. It brings more might generation, allows a mid-range playstyle, barrier/resistance access which then gets extended as well from Sand Squall. It has all the strengths of warhorn on the previous weapon set too. I will definitely be looking to play this set specifically when Secrets of the Obscure come out!

  • Extra might generation over against sword/warhorn.
  • Resistance access that can be extended, very potent for solo play.
  • Boon extension from warhorn which perfectly plays into all the boons you can provide as a Catalyst.
  • Enough energy building to allow for a 4-sphere deployment rotation, something only hammer has exclusively been able to do, so this is very refreshing!

Tempest:

Sword/warhorn -

From my notes this was doing as much damage as my live character's solo build, with scuffed gear, so this version can only get better with proper gearing. I really enjoyed the evasion and blast finishers on this weapon set to get to 25 might rapidly after my fire overload. It can give itself an array of boons and then extend them all with Sand Squall. I even have a sigil of celerity setup on my live character that I would have loved to try on my beta character. I know it would have made this even stronger. Out of the two, I much preferred sword/warhorn on Tempest, it seemed to feel more natural to me. 

  • Basically the same points as sword/warhorn on Catalyst.
  • One extra is this felt like it fit Tempest really well for me. Overloads are small in radius so being melee with sword seemed to fit super well for me and the evasion worked well to keep you safe more so while melee.

Hammer -

One weapon I was very ready to try, and it did not disappoint. I was able to develop a nice loop where you could go to fire > water > earth > air to keep up orbs or activate them later on, in air's case so you can Grand Finale just before your fire overload when you go back to fire. It was really fun to see this weapon on something other than Catalyst. I will say (it isn't something bothering me all that much, but worth a mention) it felt slow without quickness so I might look to pop in a celerity sigil to speed up a section of the rotation, but overall it was really fun. Despite the orbs/Grand Finale feeling okay on hammer, I will address them again on Weaver as overall they feel off.

  • A nice rotation to still complete overloads and activate your hammer orbs and then being able to Grand Finale just before your next fire overload. It all felt like it fit well.
  • Having alacrity solo on hammer is refreshing to bring down cooldowns to use them every single loop instead of every other loop.
  • Very potent damage.
  • Rocky Loop does give you more damage reduction while you overload which reduces how exposed you are to damage while completing an overload.

Weaver:

Hammer -

I was very suspicious of how orbs were going to work on Weaver and worried it was going to be a case of double dipping every attunement to get them up. However, the dual orbs is a nice work around to let you get all your orbs active without needing to go to every attunement. It felt okay to play, and I feel most of my issues are because I'm used to the agency of hammer on Catalyst, but due to how Weaver functions, I felt without that agency due to me not having skills up when I wanted them. Where quickness lacking didn't feel that bad on Tempest, it felt pretty brutal on Weaver. Also, Weaver has no combo fields so you can't make use of the varied blast/leaper/whirl finishers that hammer has at all which does lower your sustain and boon output when solo with Weaver hammer. As I mentioned in my Tempest section, the orbs/Grand Finale felt fine there, but in Weaver, for me, they still felt really off, even with accessing them becoming easier.

  • Due to a lack of quickness and how Weaver keeps your off-hand abilities, there was a lack of agency.
  • No combo fields so all your benefits from various finishers are entirely wasted
  • Grand Finale is really good inside a combo field for bonus effects as well, and you won't be able to do this on your own with hammer on Weaver.
  • If it remains, Dual Orbs is a good way of letting you get your orbs up without needing to double dip every attunement.

Issue/proposal:

So, out of all of these, the only issue I ran into, and its only become more relevant now I see Hammer being used on other weapon sets, is that the skill 3 (orb/Grand Finale) mechanic, is really feeling out of place, at least for me. I have a complex where Catalyst doesn't have much identity; it is an elite spec where its class mechanic is literally a combo field (with boons, but loads of classes have boons). The other defining feature of Catalyst was hammer's orb mechanic. I did want this to become a Catalyst mechanic where using skill 3 on any weapon with the Catalyst trait line equipped would summon the orb, but now I want that even more. 

With the orb mechanic being stuck to hammer, I feel Catalyst is going to lose even more unique identity. Orbs are there also to give passive bonuses and generate rapid energy to use your class mechanic. Weaver and Tempest do not need energy and they both have their own modifier traits so I don't feel they need orb modifiers as well. Now, I aren't expecting this to even happen at all, but I'll propose it again, especially now I've seen hammer on Weaver and how it is feeling clunky despite Dual Orbs:

Rework hammer. Remove orbs off the weapon entirely, and give it 4 new abilities, one for each attunement on skill 3. Make it where casting skill 3 on any weapon with the Catalyst elite spec equipped will summon the orb matching the attunement (basically how with Mechanist, using skill 3 on any weapon shoots Rocket Fist). My initial idea was hammer can still use Grand Finale as it was Catalyst specific, but now it won't be, that can't work.

I'm not sure how Grand Finale would fire anymore, maybe deploying your Jade Sphere could be moved to f1/2/3/4 (attunement keybinds) and f5 becomes your Grand Finale so you still have control over it. This would fix a long standing issue of energy on other weapons on Catalyst as literally only hammer can build really rapid energy, which I respect is the elite spec weapon, but Catalyst on other weapon sets feels like core-ele v2 (I'm talking about live Catalyst, beta weapon sets aside, they feel great!) I also feel it might make Weaver function closer to live Weaver on Hammer. You'd be wanting to dual attunements but then double attune to fire or air (condi or power) to use the new skill 3. This is quite an extensive proposal and I've always felt that so I still won't be surprised if it doesn't ever come to light, I just wanted to put it out here properly now given how Hammer is looking on other weapons, and how Hammer is kind of of a defining feature of Catalyst, and soon it won't be.

I still had a load of fun with Elementalist in the beta and no matter what happens, I'm excited for the new weapon combos when Secrets of the Obscure comes out!

Bugs:

  • Only one I personally saw is a guildie was running Aurene's Hammer (gen 3 legendary) and he didn't have the legendary hammer orbs/projectiles on Weaver like you normally do. I had them on Tempest, it just seemed to be a Weaver thing, probably as its not coded for a¬†Dual Orb¬†ability to give the proper legendary hammer visuals/projectiles. Only a visual bug though!

 

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On 6/30/2023 at 12:34 PM, thetwothousand.5049 said:

While you're right that sw/wh weaver is going to be quite good, I want people to start pumping the breaks on the 50K+ numbers. While it is true that that total can be achieved, its happening exclusively with Huge Hitbox enemies. These are pretty rare to find in game these days, and theirs only a handful that are instanced content. Most instance bosses are normal or small hitboxs, on which sw/wh weaver is putting up ~44K. Certainly great numbers, but generally in line with what pure dps classes are currently doing.

I think its also worth pointing out that in SCs discord there is back and forth if warhorn will actually even replace offhand dagger for most small enemies. Because of the way they tend to move its likely OH dagger will still be the better choice in real gameplay because it will be much more consistent than warhorn will be able to pull off. And personally I think that's a best case scenario where warhorn and dagger will both have encounters that making them ideal to use, without either being directly forced out of the meta.

I want to add that the catalyst elite wasn’t properly set up to work with warhorn yet. Now imagine if it was. Two Lightning orbs is quite frightening. 

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3 hours ago, TheDetective.8172 said:

I want to add that the catalyst elite wasn’t properly set up to work with warhorn yet. Now imagine if it was. Two Lightning orbs is quite frightening. 

That's a good point to consider, but I'm not actually sure how much an impact it would have. Would getting lightning orb and quantum strike twice every 90 seconds outweigh FGS? For people like myself that hate conjures that's obviously a better way to go, but for benchmarking purposes or high level play it might not be enough. I've done zero math and my gut reaction is going back and forth on which is better.  A good example of what possibilities makes this an exciting change!  

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Hammer is very clunky and unfun to play, so no matter how strong you make it, I don't think I'll ever be using it. Conjure Lightning Hammer is a way better hammer and is tons more fun to use. Like with Fire Sword main hand and Fire Dagger or Focus, the leap finisher is on 2 and the AoE moves are on 4 and 5, so you can very easily set up combo fields to get combo auras. The hotbar layout has way better parity with sword main-hand and dagger/focus/warhorn off-hand. This means anyone who is familiar with Sword main-hand on Ele is going to have a lot more fun and a way easier time just picking up the Conjure Lightning Hammer and going to town. It's very "pick-up-and-go". 

Catalyst Hammer is considerably clunkier for no justifiable reason: the leap finisher is on Water 4 and the CC skill is on Air 4, whereas Conjure Lightning Hammer's 3 skill does more damage AND more CC. 

Imagine the following scenario: Take the Conjured Lightning Hammer and just rework it into Conjure Hammer. Let us swap elements. Don't rework the animations, just change the VFX, boons and conditions so they're element-appropriate. Remove the 30 second timer so it becomes an activated toggle, and remove the duplicate weapon drop. I get it sounds nice on paper to let a friend pick up the weapon and play with it, but it causes serious rotation issues in practice.

BAM, you now have a hammer that is instantly more useful, smoother and more intuitive to play, and ultimately far more fun than the hammer Catalyst has. This is also partly due to Cata's hammer skills being designed around its wells, and by extension, Cata's traits are designed around the use of hammer over all other weapon types. Conversely, Warhorn is a great off-hand weapon because it puts down combo fields, and Sword is a great main-hand weapon because it is able to make good use of those fields for combo auras. Sword 2 on other elements just has really useful skills for gameplay, like a laundry list of "what does a player need to be able to do": Fire 2 is a leap finisher that puts down an AoE burning field, Water 2 is an excellent evade and one of the best healing skills in the game, Air 2 is a gap closer that does CC. It's like everything you need is all in one spot.

Cata's hammer is not designed to be a good or useful hammer with useful skills a player needs to be able to immediately and sensibly access, it's meant  to work as an accessory to the Catalyst's wells mechanic. And while a weapon fueling a spec mechanic is by no means a bad thing in it of itself (example: dagger on Virtuoso), I do believe this highlights just how poorly designed Catalyst as a spec is, and the hammer needing a damage buff outside of Catalyst to be useful and to overcome the fact that it's clunky to use is a testament to Catalyst's design issues. You'd need to overhaul how it works from the ground up and practically make a brand-new specialization if you want it to be useful.

I sincerely think the people who main Cata only do so for one of three reasons:

1) Because it's been buffed to be powerful in certain game modes
2) Because they don't know how Weaver works and fell for the "playing piano" rhetoric, not realizing there are restricted element builds for it, and pushing all of the buttons in a way that more greatly resembles playing piano feels more braindead than making executive decisions about what element you're choosing to be in and why in a given situation
3) Heavy amounts of copium that this was the elite spec we got.

Now that Tempest mains can use sword (which is lots more fun and will encourage more Weaver mains to use Tempest more often), it'll help ease them into Weaver since Weaver is not actually all that much more complicated once you get how sword works with using the leap finisher on combo fields you set up. I think that's going to be great for Tempest mains and restructure a lot of the current discourse on the state of Elementalist, as I'm seeing a lot of the aforementioned rhetoric in map chat coming from people who don't even have Weaver unlocked.

Warhorn is a great addition to Weaver's arsenal, and offers a few alternative play style.

On both, now summoner builds are far more viable. But if you want to use a lightning hammer for a Thor-style power fantasy, it's just way better and more fun to use Conjure Lightning Hammer. Sword/Warhorn is more useful not just because of damage, but convenience.

Sword and Warhorn simply don't really offer much to Catalyst or its wells. I may have my heavy disagreements here and there with how some of the other specs are designed, but Catalyst is legitimately the only one that I think is so awful from the point of the concept alone that it should be replaced on principle. I thought it'd have a Deadeye-style representative in a Living World season to justify its existence, but nope, it's nowhere to be seen in EoD. It's really just an attempt at trying to force together the idea of a Scrapper and the idea of a Summoner and doing neither terribly well. There's not much incentive to use an Elementalist Scrapper when Scrapper is already in the game and is more coherent as an overall package.

Elemental fist-using martial artists are actually featured in EoD (Stonefist in the tutorial zone and Officer Aimi in the Janin meta) so if a Summoner is what you wanted to go for, I would check out Saint Seiya and get some ideas of what to do with the Celestials from there. Give it main hand focus with punches on 2, a projectile on 3, and Willbender's utility skills. Then fix up Staff and Scepter for people who prefer the more westernized Mage power fantasy over the more expansion-appropriate Far East Asian one (which is justified in GW1 when Cynn marries Mhenlo, for those of you who remember), and rework the conjured weapon system as described above, and you'd make everyone happy regardless of preference, especially with pistol on the way.

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On 6/30/2023 at 11:09 AM, scerevisiae.1972 said:

the biggest piece of feedback i can give is that pistol is a poor thematic fit for Elementalist. Like... the worst of all the weapons possible.

 

Axe, greatsword, mace, longbow, shortbow = fine

rifle/pistol = not fine.

but as long as it's actually a ranged weapon this time, i'll deal with it.

That may sound a bit dumb since gw2 never showed signs of using a mechanic of the kind (especially so, I believe, because it would be easier to gear and worst to get stats and/or anet would end up with a new "weapon" to develop and balance) but I always felt that elementalist should have at least one elite spec that allowed the class to just throw spells with both bare hands. I do agree that choosing firearms for ele as a weapon is a really weird choice, and my previous opinion is probably one of the reasons for enjoying d/d so much for years (there's no stabbing lol). Using any of the bows would also make me quite excited to play, as it'd remind me of the magick archer of Dragon's Dogma, one of my most beloved classes among all the rpgs I have ever played. Anyway, as the majority of people here that tried hammer as a weaver, I ended up a bit sad with the results, as the idea of the crazy amount of orbs seemed great, though playing with no combo fields appears to hit the elementalist a bit too hard. Anyway, I'm just a saudosist player and probably I'll not be feeling at home in this class as I used to feel before HoT, which makes me quite sad because playing avatar was awesome. Wish you luck on the coming patch, guys (I'm expecting some hate from random people for no reason I understand, but that's okay)

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56 minutes ago, Ghostkat.9580 said:

Elemental fist-using martial artists are actually featured in EoD (Stonefist in the tutorial zone and Officer Aimi in the Janin meta) so if a Summoner is what you wanted to go for, I would check out Saint Seiya and get some ideas of what to do with the Celestials from there. Give it main hand focus with punches on 2, a projectile on 3, and Willbender's utility skills.

That would be a dream coming true. You can also see that on some flame legion charrs, especially in the first chapter of the personal story if you choose the shaman sire (just fire dagger skills though, but still used with bare hands)

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31 minutes ago, Tekey.5084 said:

That would be a dream coming true. You can also see that on some flame legion charrs, especially in the first chapter of the personal story if you choose the shaman sire (just fire dagger skills though, but still used with bare hands)

Just for context... check out this video if you haven't seen this before. Count the moves he does that are already in Guild Wars 2.

Note that Flame Wall (Fire Focus 4) is used at the start of the fight and he does a combo finisher through it at the 48 second mark. Fire Shield (Fire Focus 5) is used at the 1:46 mark and its Transmute Fire form is used earlier at the 1:07 mark. Just to highlight some examples of how off-hand focus already works for a martial arts class.


For a projectile, Ryu's Hanto Hadouken variant from his guest appearance in the fighting game Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid has him firing a phoenix that travels out and then comes back to hit a second time, instead of a typical fireball.
https://imgur.com/DKzTovK

This is literally Fire Scepter 3, which heals as a phoenix should.

You can use this as an excuse to update Scepter to make the Ele mains who want to be mages happy, and also have something expansion appropriate. So in EoD, with GW2's cosmetics, you have one specialization where you can either be this:

https://static.wikia.nocookie.net/saintseiya/images/1/1d/Tech-Shiryu-RozansRisingDragon.jpg

Or be this:

https://miro.medium.com/v2/resize:fit:948/1*3QjoPyvXwOde5NmP0YHz_A.jpeg

There is choice, and relevance outside of the Far East Asian-themed expansion should a player want to take the "when in Rome" approach going into a new expansion. Both parties are pleased, and now everyone's happy.

For Water martial arts + Summoner, you're looking at something like this:


When ANet put the Street Fighter move, the "tatsumaki senpukyaku," onto Willbender's "Whirling Light," I immediately said to myself there's a 98% chance that a game designer was like "we need a cool kick move to go on Willbender," googled Street Fighter, saw that and said "that spinning kick looks pretty cool,". What didn't occur to them is that "tatsumaki senpukyaku" literally translates to "tornado whirlwind leg" which means it's already elementally aspected to air. Whirling Light can still be a radial 360-degree weaponstrike to match the Willbender specialization artwork a bit better (it's odd it doesn't have a move that resembles what it's doing in the artwork) without it being the tatsu. The Tornado Whirlwind Leg - more commonly known in the West as the "Hurricane Kick" - should be put on the Elementalist where it rightfully belongs.

I keep saying that like 90% of what you'd need to get a proper elemental martial arts class going is already in the game, so you can easily cobble it together and have it at least be serviceable gameplay-wise with very little time and money expense. AND... this is one of those things that's mega popular and makes tons of money without trying very hard. Not to mention, other MMO devs struggle with getting this to work well. GW2 is the only game on the market right now that has a serviceable elemental stance-dancing system, which is why other games either lock you into an element or provide the visual effects but don't give you control over swapping. ANet could have easily beaten the competition - including FFXIV, which gutted its Monk badly - but chose not to go the obvious route, leaving money on the table for no good reason other than trying to be different for the sake of being different.

Similarly, it must not have occurred to the dev team and the DEI group who censored out content that wasn't exclusively Korean that the tatsu is from a fictionalized Japanese martial art called Ansatsuken. Either that, or they didn't care since it looked cool. However, they could have used Korean martial arts like Taekwondo, Taekkyon, Subac and Yongmudo. So... erm... whoops, I guess. ūüėõ

We could have had a metal element being the new F5 skill instead of these weird orbs (Wu Xing, the 5 elements of Taoism, are also used in South Korea, along with Japan and Vietnam, so there's a lot of shared cultural iconography), and summons similar to overloads like what's in the BDO video above every time the water dragon appears during the moves. Considering how overwhelmingly Caucasian the dev team is, along with Zhengyi Wang's departure from the art team (he went to Blizzard) and how much stuff seems ripped at-face-value either as memberberries references to stuff in GW1 that shouldn't actually be relevant anymore or stuff from Final Fantasy XIV, I'm not entirely surprised at the lack of cultural homework done by anyone not named Maclaine Diemer. Element Monk is supported by GW1's story with the marriage of Cynn and Mhenlo, and is a better reference to the dual-classing of GW1 and how that may have impacted the culture over 250 years than trying to force Mesmer-Warrior or Bunny-Thumper into a game with a radically different combat system. There's a reason why Spellbreaker is the least-played class in the entire game... these kinds of references aren't substitutes for good game design in the combat system we currently have.

And, unlike Catalyst, there's actual representation of this in-game, with two Canthan NPCs. 

I found it so odd that the hammer-wielding Catalyst was what we got for the Ele reveal during Lunar New Year - which has an event called Dragon Ball - while the Dragon Ball Super movie was right around the corner and was delayed until not long after EoD's release. Plus, all of the focus skins that look like knuckles weapons... it felt like such a massive marketing faux pa. It's not like Bandai didn't project that the Dragon Ball franchise would be set to make just under a billion dollars in 2023 based on its earnings in the first half of the year or anything (even with no new movie or show announcement)... The Gundam franchise made just under a billion dollars last year as well, but did we get new Mechanist skins for the Jade Mech? Nope. It's still green and fitting with very few cosmetic options...

Whelp, unless Catalyst gets forcibly yeeted from the game and replaced by this, it's not happening, because ANet decide no new elite specs. And that means this will never be a thing, so I have no further reason to purchase focus skins from the gemstore, BL chests or pursue unlocks for in-game achievements:

https://e1.pxfuel.com/desktop-wallpaper/656/421/desktop-wallpaper-fire-god-liu-kang-liu-kang-thumbnail.jpg

Weebs get this stuff. Sadly they're in short supply 'round these parts, which is why opinions here tend to not be in their favour. ANet is welcome to do whatever they want with their game, but they also accept the consequences of decisions that don't strike when the iron is hot to successfully expand their player base (or by extension, they're responsible for those decisions which might alienate interest). I'm of the mind that unless you're making FFXIV money (which is practically carrying the entirety of Square Enix at this point), it's best for a dev team to play it safe and go with what's proven to be profitable, over trying to be different for different's sake, which is a higher-risk option. Clearly Catalyst is an example of that going horribly wrong, and should be a cautionary tale to any and all aspiring game devs who are looking for their game to be thriving and profitable with active players in the millions instead of the low-to-mid hundreds of thousands.

Which also makes me worried for the expansion, since Secrets of the Obscure comes out around the same time as Armored Core 6... a game so overwhelmingly profitable that its sheer tidal wave of preorder sales had to be temporarily paused for breaking Bandai Namco's payment processors. SotO is going to have some steep competition for the first few weeks of its launch.

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On 7/2/2023 at 5:20 AM, Tazat Gold Kazarms.7951 said:

For me personally I play hammer on ele for the combo spheres and the defensive mitigation. The current hammer builds have neither so you don't get catalyst's benefit or the benefit of the chosen Elite spec. 

 

Ele DEFINATELY needs a ranged option. I feel like a longbow makes the most sense because it already exists (conjure frostbow) and is really fun to play. The changes to it I would make are buffing damage from the auto attack and having at least 1 AOE for easy CC in PVP or WvW situation.

 

Pistol can be cool, I'm imagining pistol and dagger will be the meta combo for movement (because ele is also lacking in that department) Ranged weapons can work fairly well with the existing Elite specs so I'm intrigued by what the new one will bring that's special.

Rifle and longbow were always bad ideas. They have never been, and will never be, good ones.

The entire reason you believe otherwise is a matter of community rhetoric  in the wake of long-standing complaints that Elementalist does not have a decent ranged option. This is entirely a fault of Staff and Scepter - the two most "Mage-esque" options - feeling overwhelmingly outdated in terms of more modern gameplay. 

Over years and years with the community's size dwindling with time, the loud and vocal voices of the GW2 community coalesced with the notion that Ele needs a new one, purely because ArenaNet did not show any signs of wanting to go back and modernize some of its more dated systems which also plague Ele to this day. Examples include the current state of the Conjured Weapons and the summoned Elementals. Enough people kept saying Rifle or Longbow was the answer, to the extent that the community's group-think just aligned with it without question.

Unfortunately, this does not fix the problem, it only sidesteps it, and Ele's issues are a lot more deeply systemic than just the available weapon choices. This is also why everyone's pointing out that Catalyst's hammer has issues on Weaver and Tempest, because by design, it is meant to interact with the way Catalyst's wells function, but wasn't designed to be a serviceable hammer in its own right.

This is why Conjured Lighting Hammer - for all of the issues that come with it being tied to the way Conjured weapons work - is a superior hammer in terms of gameplay, because element aside, it has everything a player might possibly want or need on one weapon hotbar, designed with parity to the layout of other weapons like Sword and pretty much all of the off-handed options. You get two AoEs - one with a combo field - a leap finisher to use as a gap closer and to make use of combo fields, and a really good CC ability. That is irrespective of its status as an elemental weapon; it's just a solidly packaged weapon kit in its own right.

If Conjured Lightning Hammer was changed simply to "Conjure Hammer," was changed to a toggle instead of a 30-second timer, and without changing its animations (only the visual effects and boons/conditions associated with its abilities) was able to swap elements, it would be a vastly superior weapon to the hammer we currently have on Catalyst. That's because it's a good weapon that interacts with combat design well first and foremost, rather than forcing its design exclusively around a singular gameplay mechanic.

Bow is the same way. Conjure Frost Bow is a healing weapon, but what if it was just Conjure Bow and you could change it to fire, earth or air? You'd have a very serviceable longbow that would likely function considerably better than a new two-handed longbow that only exists because a) you saw elemental arrow types in other videogames, and b) you stubbornly held onto the idea that you thought it could work if done right, without thinking about it any more deeply than that. There's nothing it would reasonably offer you that couldn't already be done by fixing the Conjured Weapon system, which exists primarily because Ele cannot swap weapons mid-combat and since single-attunement builds do exist, if you're not able to conjure an alternative weapon, you're hurt by your gameplay being too limited. A regular longbow risks being either redundant to how a Conjured Bow would be if it could element-swap, or being in the same situation as Catalyst's hammer, where it's designed specifically around a particular mechanic that doesn't really translate to the other two specializations. Conversely, Weaver could make decent use out of a build that primarily uses the conjured bow, and then swap to a melee option for close-ranged combat if needed:
 


Right now, there are too many builds that are very heavily dependent on making use of the Conjured weapons for DPS, especially openers and rotations that utilize the Fire Greatsword. It's not uncommon for rotations to get screwed up because a party member accidentally picked up the second Greatsword drop we needed for our rotation. I'm of the mind that a) since this system is overdue for an overhaul, its fixes should be prioritized, and b) no weapon that is currently accessible through the Conjured Weapon system should be its own equippable weapon on Ele since that would be redundant in favour of better-fitting options.

So that being said here is why you're getting main-hand-exclusive Pistol and not Dual-Pistols, Off-Hand Pistol or Rifle:

What sorts of moves do you think would be needed to occupy all five slots, reasonably speaking? What would a water pistol, for example, do? It squirts water. Okay, that's one ability. It can shoot ice. Okay, that's a second ability. It can fire a vapor. Alright, that's three. Congratulations, you've now exhausted the solid, liquid and gas forms of water. So what's left for 4 and 5? You could shoot a puddle onto the ground and maybe it chills enemies, or heals teammates in an AoE, right?

The problem right there is we already have stuff like that, and in spades, on the other existing off-hand options, like Dagger, Focus and Warhorn.

All of the other elements have this same kind of issue. Players champion rifle as a ranged option because when they don't think about it deeper than in the most superficial way, they can wrap their minds around the concept of a flamethrower, a super soaker and a tesla gun. On paper, that makes sense. Try to fill 20 weaponskill slots with unique abilities not already on Ele available through other weapons so it's not redundant. Now that gets a bit more challenging.

This is why it makes the most sense to restrict a new ranged option to a main-hand pistol, especially if you have development constraints and can't be putting out anything that's redundant to stuff we already have. Dual pistols could be a thing, but outside of having for the cosmetics of it, there's no real value to it other than wasting development resources making something redundant and making new icons for it, when you could instead put those resources to better use elsewhere. In terms of gameplay, a main-hand pistol can still shoot through combo fields put down by an off-hand weapon like Dagger, Focus or Warhorn.

This is the reason for why main-hand focus is always the correct answer here, especially during the Far East Asian-themed expansion. I'm not pushing for it because it's what I personally like or want. I understand that Elementalist has more to gain by a) updating Staff and Scepter appropriately with more up-to-date behaviours on weaponskills, b) updating out-of-date mechanics to be put to better use in modern gameplay (including but not restricted to the Conjured Weapons, which currently cause rotational issues and other gameplay inconveniences in their present form), and c) presenting options that are likely to cater to a wide audience since this is a product put out into a consumer market with intentions to sell.

So under the circumstances, if you're a business person, and you have a Korean-themed expansion, you aim to respect that culture due to who your studio's parent company is, and you need to think of what sorts of things you want to make for an Elementalist class that fits that expansion, you have to ask yourself the following questions:

1) How are the elements represented in South Korean culture, and are they associated with anything in particular that might be relevant to gameplay functions?

2) Does this game already have something which fulfills this particular archetype?

3) What is the demand for this sort of thing in the broader gaming market?

4) Does this fit the universe my game is set in?

5) Does this require a hefty development investment or can this be developed at a low cost?

The answer to these questions is as follows:

1) South Korean culture uses the same representation of the elements as Japan, Vietnam and China, the five elements, or "Wuxing,". Unlike the more westernized depiction of the five elements of alchemy (earth, fire, air, water and "spirit/aether/quintessence"), the elements of Wuxing (earth, fire, wood, water and metal) are representative of the changing of the seasons, cycles of creation and destruction via how they interact with one another. Occasionally, popular culture will swap out "wood" for "air," and occasionally "metal" for "thunder" or "lightning," so creative liberties are sometimes taken with them.

Wuxing is typically associated with holistic medicine and the martial arts.

2) Not adequately. The closest thing we have to a martial artist class is staff on Daredevil. People who aren't really into media from Far East Asia might not care or understand the distinction, but those who are draw a very, very firm line between that and a fists-using, fireball-throwing martial artist as two completely different and only tangentially-related archetypes. They do not fulfill the same power fantasy.

3) Very high, because this kind of content generates tons of money annually. The Dragon Ball franchise alone is slated to make just under a billion dollars this year even with no ongoing show or movie, based on Bandai's projections from the franchise's performance in the first and second fiscal quarter of the year. Additionally, the games which feature this class archetype struggle to keep interest due to budget and development constraints that prevent engaging gameplay and a functioning element-swapping mechanic. Guild Wars 2 is the only MMO with action-oriented reactive combat currently on the market to have successfully pulled off the element-swapping mechanic, making it uniquely poised to generate interest with players who have been waiting for a game to come along that can finally provide this power fantasy.

Additionally, our Far East Asian-themed expansion is set to release shortly before an extremely popular franchise has a movie debut, allowing us to ride that marketing wave to signal-boost our game to a broader audience.

4) Yes, and in fact, two NPCs in the expansion perform elementally-based martial arts moves, so it already exists in-universe. In spite of many players insisting that dual fists should go on Guardian due to Guardian's similarities with Guild Wars 1's Monk and its more Cleric-based move set, a precedent was set in GW1's story in which a Canthan Monk marries an Elementalist, which could be argued as the in-narrative justification for how over time this became the regional norm and justifies two NPCs displaying these abilities. Furthermore, it is a reference to the idea of dual-classing from Guild Wars 1.

Furthermore, many cosmetic skins for the main-hand weapon in question already fit the desired function. They are currently relegated to off-hand weapons.

5) Since around 90% of the proposed specialization currently exists in-game, albeit split apart and not all in one place, its development is extremely low in cost and can be accomplished with a great deal of recycling existing assets. The entire off-hand version of the weapon still sufficiently fulfills these purposes so only the main-hand skills are necessary, and the utility skills can be brought over from elsewhere.

So regardless of whether or not it's something I personally want, it makes sense, from a business perspective, lore perspective, marketing perspective, and general gameplay perspective. Conversely, the only reason to continue arguing for longbow or rifle is that the community won't shut up about demanding longbow or rifle, but it's very clear that other than the insistence of wanting it for the sake of it, or insisting that it's needed to circumvent a problem instead of just addressing the problem, the community hasn't actually thought terribly deeply about the situation. Outside of just really wanting it, there's nothing about rifle or longbow that addresses a need that couldn't be sufficiently fulfilled by fixing staff and scepter and updating out-of-date utilities (such as conjured weapons) and traits, which includes getting a potentially superior longbow anyway by default in the process.

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