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Conditions/Boons should be more individually valuable

P Fun Daddy.1208

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Warning: moonshot thread, this is unlikely to happen

The first thing that needs to happen in sPvP is to divorce it completely from PvE in terms of conditions and boons. There were necessary changes to PvE in those areas that wrecked PvP (and honestly WvW to a lesser extent); namely, conditions needing to compete with direct damage especially in groups, and certain conditions being simply outscaled (burning, specifically sucked in every mode). Similarly, the stability change was welcome in those modes, as duration stacking it was simply unreasonable (coordinated groups can still never get stunned, but it's harder which is a good thing).

Some of these changes can and should stay in PvP modes; again, burning is vastly better than it used to be even if it doesn't really qualitatively differ from bleeding now. Stability, I could see an argument either way. But overall, conditions need to be reduced in how many you can apply, but increased in effectiveness. A simple (again, PvP only) change I could see would be to lower the damage of low-stacked conditions(<3), and increase the damage of higher stack values (>6). This provides an incentive to specialize in certain conditions and not simply toss out as many as possible.

But the better change, for me, would be twofold- First, nerf cleanses to dirt. They should be rare, you should have to use them at the right time rather than constantly burning them. Secondly, nerf condition spread (how many different damaging conditions each class has access to), and overall application (number of skills that actually apply conditions) while increasing condition damage to compensate. Conditions at the moment are purely a numbers game; if you have enough cleanse to survive their burst, you have an opportunity to win, but if you don't you lose unequivocally and have pretty much no recourse. If conditions become individually more valuable, but simultaneously harder to counter (through hard counters, at least; dodging would be more effective), it will feel more like you're fighting a player than fighting a build. Part of the problem, of course, is runes: passive application is needlessly frustrating and that power should be shifted elsewhere.

Similarly, boons are overloaded, and have overloaded counters to compensate. Some classes can buff themselves to insanity with high uptime, and that simply shouldn't be as possible as it is. High uptime, high-value buffs should be exclusive to support roles, and everyone else should have to pick between the two. But in exchange, boon corruption needs to be cut back; with buffing relegated to supports or being weak/short, there would be simple gameplay counters that have tangible impact, like focusing the support, defending through a burst of boons, or disrupting a rotation to cut off their boon supply. With those in hand, having harder counters would be less necessary, though still useful especially in team situations. For example, if a high value threat is being supported, you could burn their boons so that the support can be more easily focused down, instead of the current situation of just shutting them down with enough corruption or their not even needing a support to reach critical mass.

Frankly, I think making these changes are more important than class vs class balance or even balance between build types; what's generally better for the health of a game is a variety of strategies that are viable counters to builds, instead of having a variety of builds that are viable counters to strategies. In the former case, people think about playing the game and how to do it better, in the latter they think more about relative power and once the meta settles all that's left to do is complain.

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Honestly conditions imo need to be reverted to the pre- buff level where they didn't just freestack (pvp only ofc). Then create a system where conditions take the damage of the highest damaging player applying when it's accounting for damage (I.E. a burn guards burns would be accounted because they'd be dealing the most burn damage but a poison thief's poison would have their numbers counted on the poison because their poison damage is higher) Then you can technically run multiple condi builds and allow them each to contribute but not in a way where people just get overloaded with extreme condi that kills you in 2 seconds. It also prevents the old issue of over-writing the damage of the designated condi dealer on your team through some random condi on one of your skills, now you can actually help your condition dealer and help stack extra bleeds or confusion to buff their damage onto another player they have applied the same condition to. (Clarification: I'm a rifle engi and I place 4 bleed stacks onto my enemy and our condi necro drops 12 stacks of bleed onto the enemy making the total 16 bleed stacks and taking the necros damage for all 16 stacks. I'm not synergizing my condition application with his damage so he can actually benefit from my application of conditions and it rewards teams coordinating their condition application)

Edit note: I agree with boons needing to be cut back on application and be more meaningful when they're present in a fight.

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@NotASmurf.1725 said:Anet can't even tone down fireball animations without pve kitten crying, imagine toning back boons and conditions. It'd be too much effort to only do it for PvP and then basically balance 2 games in 1 so unless they nerf it for PvE (never gonna happen) you can forget about it.

The idea is that this isn't intended as a nerf. My ideal change here would be to make the reduction in cleanses and corruptions an equal trade with the reduction of cover conditions and boon ease respectively, simply to make other (more strategy-oriented and less build-oriented) counters to each more important. Harder counters like corruption and cleanses should in my opinion be options taken by those who want an easier time with them, and not necessities that everyone needs to have the maximum of to get by. If this was how power damage worked, it would be something like power damage being so huge that everyone needs to run max toughness, in every build.

I dream of a day when water line isn't 100% necessary for ele.

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