Toldain Talks

Because reading me sure beats working!


Toldain started as an Everquest character. I've played him in EQ2, WoW, Vanguard, LOTRO, and Zork Online. And then EVE Online, where I'm 3 million years old, rather than my usual 3000. Currently I'm mostly playing DDO. But I still have fabulous red hair. In RL, I am a software developer who has worked on networked games, but not MMORPGS.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Combat Skill Tinkering

Below I've quoted upcoming combat changes posted to forums by game developer Gallenite, and discussed in this forum thread.

Damage Mitigation and Resistance

* Maximum mitigation/resistance numbers for current level has been increased from [ Level * 80 ] to [ Level * 150 ]
* Damage mitigated now has diminishing returns, with the break-even point set at 4000 for level 70 players

Stat Caps

* All stat cap maximums have been increased from [ 7 * Level + 20 ] to [ 15 * level + 20 ]
* Stat benefits are now on a diminishing returns curve
* The maximum benefit that each stat provides, including power pool size, has been increased
* Classes that use multiple stats for power pools have had their maximum power possible increase by up to +25% if they are high enough in both stats. This is to offset the difficulty of having to increase multiple stats

Avoidance Skill

* Skill caps have increased from [ 1 * Level ] to [ 1.5 * Level ]
* Base Parry chance has been lowered from 10% to 5%
* Base Deflection chance has lowered from 30% to 25%
* Increases to avoidance skills now have diminishing returns similar to the changes made for mitigation/resistance. Players experience more gains in avoidance when further away from the cap, and less gains as they reach closer to the cap

Casting Skill

* Skill caps have increased from [ 1 * Level ] to [ 1.5 * Level ]
* Uses a diminishing returns curve similar to avoidance skills
* Actual hostile spell resistance modification has increased from -10% to -20% at maximum
* Beneficial spells that use casting skill, mostly affecting ministration, have their power costs reduced with increased skill
* Fizzle nevermore! The entire Fizzle mechanic has been removed

Focus Skill

* Skill caps have increased from [ 1 * Level ] to [ 1.5 * Level ]
* Focus has a maximum 20% instead of 10% to prevent damage interrupts
* Focus Skill also mitigates the chance of spell based Interrupts, Stifle, and Stun Effects from interrupting a spell that is already casting

Attack Skill

* Skill caps have increased from [ 1 * Level ] to [ 1.5 * Level ]


* Attack speed and DPS caps have increased to 200%
* Uses a diminishing returns curve to determine the actual amount of attackspeed and DPS modification, which caps out at 125% actual modification when reaching the cap

This is all pretty preliminary, and I suspect there are some typos in there. For example, Gallenite states that the Focus Skill caps at 1*Level. Umm, shouldn't that be 5*Level, that's what it says in my persona window. The same goes for spell-casting skills and attack skills and so on. I think they are looking for a 1.5x increase in skillcaps, thus the error.

What is this about, really? For one thing, I think they have a real problem with resists in the PVP game. It is quite possible for a PC to make him or herself nearly immune to magic by putting on some good resist gear. The solution? They are introducing some non-linearity.

What this means is that stacking on more value to resists/skills/mitigation will help, for quite a while, but the value of a point more diminishes as it gets up. Right now, we have a bunch of cliffs. One point of mitigation always helps the same amount, versus a given mob, until you hit the cap, and it doesn't help at all. The same goes for resistances, and spellcasting.

To illustrate why this might be important, let me tell you about my raid situation. I have four buffs that require concentration: individual melee haste, individual spell damage proc, a group buff of INT/WIS, and a group buff of arcane, mental, and divine resistance. I almost never use the INT/WIS buff. This is because most of the mages I group with are at or near the INT cap already, buffing them doesn't help much. It's an easy decision, but it makes the game less interesting, and my buff less useful. I'm sure there are other situations with the same issue.

The thing for us non-raiders to watch is how our characters will perform when these changes are implemented. I can well imagine that they are looking to make the "average character" perform about the same, but if you aren't an "average character" then you need to pay attention to how things have changed.

Don't assume that you will be able to do exactly what you used to be able to do.