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Alacrity: Time for a Change


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  • ArenaNet Staff

A message from Robert Gee, Guild Wars 2 Systems Team

With the changes to phantasms coming soon, I'm sure many players are wondering what this means for alacrity since phantasms are one of the key contributors of this buff in the current game. I wanted to take a minute to talk about alacrity and where things are headed in the next update.

A Lack of Alacrity

When we first started making changes to phantasms, we quickly realized that the new system would have a huge impact on alacrity uptime for chronomancers due to the changes to Phantasmal Avenger. We were actually okay with this since the whole point of the phantasm update is to make mesmer play more engaging. However, we didn't want to leave a huge gap in the duration of alacrity uptime for chronomancers. At first, we tried increasing the amount of alacrity provided by the avengers to compensate for the lower uptime, but we weren't very happy with this solution. The amount of alacrity uptime had to be pretty high to compensate for the limited uptime of the phantasm, and the change still meant that the alacrity application relied on an NPC entity. Moving some alacrity onto the other shield skill, Tides of Time, helped a little, but it wasn't quite enough, either.

Boon of Recharge

After some discussion, we decided that in addition to replacing quickness with alacrity on Tides of Time, we also would change alacrity into a boon. Originally, alacrity was built outside of the boon and condition system in order to make it feel like a unique buff. But as its use became more prevalent—to the point that it now enjoys nearly 100% uptime in certain game modes—we felt that the boon system was a better place for it to live. By being a part of the boon system it works better with the concentration stat, and it also has more counters and interactions throughout the game.

Time Distortion

With the conversion to a boon, we decided to lower the amount of recharge speed alacrity provides from 33% to 25%. We chose to lower this value because at 33% we felt it was a little too powerful compared to other boons and that easier uptime (due to interactions with traits and the concentration stat) should be met with a small decrease in power. For those who prefer alacrity with a bit more punch, we've updated the Chronomancer trait "Improved Alacrity" which now increases the potency of alacrity while decreasing the duration of incoming alacrity for the chronomancer only.

Clocking in Soon

As with phantasms, we also have done a pass on skills and traits that grant or interact with alacrity. You'll find alacrity in some unexpected places, such as the Thief's stolen bundle "Consume Plasma," and on the condition conversion list for skills like "Contemplation of Purity." We expect that there will be an adjustment period, but we think that these changes will be positive overall for alacrity use throughout the game while allowing chronomancers to maintain their current levels of alacrity uptime in a group. For additional reading about the upcoming update, look for our forum post about phantasms. We'll be watching for your feedback!

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So, here's the problem that I see. Wouldn't that mean that enemies that rip boons can now get alacrity? Would slubblings on Sloth see Alacrity? It's hard to really understand this change without more traiting context. As a chrono tank main, I worry. Additionally, for bosses that give random boons, does that mean that they can cast spells quicker? What are the interactions with enemies on this?

Also, what are the implications on the rotation? Will it be more complex? Will we have to shatter for alacrity now? Right now it's painful to shatter anything unless you have nothing up.

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Can you please clarify the Improved Alacrity trait. The way its worded, the effects are unclear. > @"Gaile Gray.6029" said:

A message from Robert Gee, Guild Wars 2 Systems Teamwe've updated the Chronomancer trait "Improved Alacrity" which now increases the potency of alacrity while decreasing the duration of incoming alacrity for the chronomancer only.

Does the increase in the potency of alacrity effect the entire party, or just the chronomancer?

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So... pve balance isn´t greant but ok. PvP and wvw on the other hand are completely bullshit. So why waste ressources on something like alacrity?Is that the way you provide content now? Change something like alacrity to force everyone to theorycraft new optimal ressources? consume plasma is completely ok in its current state. quite good in comparison to so many other steal-skill to be said. So why buff THAT?!You, as always, focus on the competely wrong thing.My question is: Why you thought it was necessary to change alacrity? Have there been any complains? If so I am absolutely sure that there have been many more problems in the past where it needed over half a year to change it.Maybe you thought it through to a greater goal but I can´t help me to doubt that. It defintily looks like you want to change something for the sake of changing anything. And balancing everything else was to difficult. If the next balance patch fails I´m done.

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I know this is mostly geared towards Chronomancer, but how does this affect Renegade's F3 (Orders From Above) as well as The Ventari Tablet trait Serene Rejuvenation in the Salvation trait line? Will they just be converted into the boon form, or can we expect totally different effects?

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@nman.3714 said:Can you please clarify the Improved Alacrity trait. The way its worded, the effects are unclear. > @"Gaile Gray.6029" said:

A message from Robert Gee, Guild Wars 2 Systems Teamwe've updated the Chronomancer trait "Improved Alacrity" which now increases the potency of alacrity while decreasing the duration of incoming alacrity for the chronomancer only.

Does the increase in the potency of alacrity effect the entire party, or just the chronomancer?

Improved Alacrity's increased potency and decreased duration affects only the chronomancer, where any instance of alacrity going into the character will receive this treatment so long as you have this trait.

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@Vermillion.4061 said:What about Frenzy Sigil which is used on almost every weapon in WvW, is that sigil going to be adjusted to?Yes, this sigil will be receiving a functionality change that causes it to give flat recharge reduction instead of alacrity.

@Ost.1560 said:I know this is mostly geared towards Chronomancer, but how does this affect Renegade's F3 (Orders From Above) as well as The Ventari Tablet trait Serene Rejuvenation in the Salvation trait line? Will they just be converted into the boon form, or can we expect totally different effects?They will also provide the alacrity boon. Duration of alacrity will be lowered a bit on Serene Rejuvenation to account for boon duration.

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While I like this change there is something about alacrity that bothers me, and should probably bother you (ANet) as well.Do you realize that Chronomancer is irreplacable due to its access to Alacrity like no other class? I think you've once stated that you value Build diversity but there isn't much diversity when there's a class that is entirely irreplacable. Druid is in a similar position although Ventari Revenant can actually Heal better but lacks some other advantages of the Druid.This Alacrity change is very good but I sincerely hope that we will get access to a meaningful replacement for Chronomancer in Raids & Fractals.

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@TwilightSoul.9048 said:While I like this change there is something about alacrity that bothers me, and should probably bother you (ANet) as well.Do you realize that Chronomancer is irreplacable due to its access to Alacrity like no other class? I think you've once stated that you value Build diversity but there isn't much diversity when there's a class that is entirely irreplacable. Druid is in a similar position although Ventari Revenant can actually Heal better but lacks some other advantages of the Druid.This Alacrity change is very good but I sincerely hope that we will get access to a meaningful replacement for Chronomancer in Raids & Fractals.

Id assume making it a boon is a pretty big step into making it available to other classes down the line.

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@TwilightSoul.9048 said:While I like this change there is something about alacrity that bothers me, and should probably bother you (ANet) as well.Do you realize that Chronomancer is irreplacable due to its access to Alacrity like no other class? I think you've once stated that you value Build diversity but there isn't much diversity when there's a class that is entirely irreplacable. Druid is in a similar position although Ventari Revenant can actually Heal better but lacks some other advantages of the Druid.This Alacrity change is very good but I sincerely hope that we will get access to a meaningful replacement for Chronomancer in Raids & Fractals.

A bit like what happened to the Herald, I suspect that if the Chronomancer was replaceable in that role, you'd never see them anymore in any role.

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@zealex.9410 said:

@TwilightSoul.9048 said:While I like this change there is something about alacrity that bothers me, and should probably bother you (ANet) as well.Do you realize that Chronomancer is irreplacable due to its access to Alacrity like no other class? I think you've once stated that you value Build diversity but there isn't much diversity when there's a class that is entirely irreplacable. Druid is in a similar position although Ventari Revenant can actually Heal better but lacks some other advantages of the Druid.This Alacrity change is very good but I sincerely hope that we will get access to a meaningful replacement for Chronomancer in Raids & Fractals.

Id assume making it a boon is a pretty big step into making it available to other classes down the line.

Yes I hope so :)I'm wondering about Quickness uptime for Chronomancer now since they replaced Quickness on Tides of Time with Alacrity

@"Ben K.6238"A bit like what happened to the Herald, I suspect that if the Chronomancer was replaceable in that role, you'd never see them anymore in any role.

As long as "replaceable" doesn't mean better/worse, that shouldn't happen but it's true, it's hard to make something replaceable without making it strictly worse in one way or another

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This and turning more boons from stacking duration tostacking intensity is one of the things I always wanted.

I always knew this change would eventually happen, so I couln't be happier.

Hopefully it will be eventually possible to consider changing more boons like quickness and alacrity from duration to stacking, so they are more of a tool to prepare larger attacks when a window of opportunity opens, like a powerful burst after brekaing the defiance bar of an enemy, or to focus a team attack against a tanky enemy in PvP, rather than to try to keep them active at all times as a blanket buff.

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@TwilightSoul.9048 said:

@TwilightSoul.9048 said:While I like this change there is something about alacrity that bothers me, and should probably bother you (ANet) as well.Do you realize that Chronomancer is irreplacable due to its access to Alacrity like no other class? I think you've once stated that you value Build diversity but there isn't much diversity when there's a class that is entirely irreplacable. Druid is in a similar position although Ventari Revenant can actually Heal better but lacks some other advantages of the Druid.This Alacrity change is very good but I sincerely hope that we will get access to a meaningful replacement for Chronomancer in Raids & Fractals.

Id assume making it a boon is a pretty big step into making it available to other classes down the line.

Yes I hope so :)I'm wondering about Quickness uptime for Chronomancer now since they replaced Quickness on Tides of Time with Alacrity

I believe u are already capping it with ease. If you put some of them elites in there the durr should be the same pretty much. But damn that slower oppener due to the lack of that initial quickness will stink.

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