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Charr Legion

[Gameplay Suggestion] Removing Armor Passives and how this will fix things.

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Greetings Heroes,


Today I am once again making this thread. Those of you In the RP Group would know that I've been working on this thread for quite a while, and the last time I attempted to finally post it - DD.com signed me out. So alas, here I am again for one last push.


Armor Passives, they need to go. This has been a topic that I've spoken with other players about for a few weeks. And we've all agreed that armor passives are for the most part, detrimental to the game.

Here are the points we had talked about:

  • Small Passives aren't worth grinding for.
  • Pointless Passives clogging the engine (both hero specific and generic.)
  • Spheres are currently functioning as bandaids on the back-end, rather than being the focus as they should be.
  • Current gear loop is tedious and unrewarding.
  • iPWR cap means waiting for an update to allow for more substantial grinding.
  • Passives make the game harder to balance.
Here are other noteworthy topics of our discussion.
  • Item Sets should still be a thing.
  • Passives should still exist on Weapons and Relics (Consolidate old passives and new ones.)
  • Spheres should be the focus on defining your play style and enhancing it.
  • The partial guarantee of ipwr 750 gear is nice.
  • Rerolling stats on gear would be a welcomed alternative.
  • Removing passives allows for drops to be applicable to all heroes, not just the one it dropped for.
  • iPWR maximums should theoretically be infinite, but drop change of high ipwr is dependent on the difficult.
  • Survival Mode (Onslaught) is needed to supplement the grinding system.
  • Removing Armor Passives will allow for balance changes without rerolling gear.

Alright, time to talk specifics and break down all of the above points.

First: Small passives aren't worth grinding for. This refers to things like +3% crit chance, or +2% Cannonball damage. All of this stuff is pretty petty when compared to +10% Skeletal Archer damage.

Second: Pointless passives like Skeletal Ram direct command range or quadrupled gold chance, these aren't really adding much to the game and only serve to make loot drops more consistently trash drops.

Third: Spheres need to be a focus and they need to be done right. Currently, spheres in this game are fairly hit or miss. Most of them are displeasing and add very little to towers. Sometimes they're completely worthless and seem to be a last minute addition to the game. I want a sphere that makes a tower Anti-Air only. Or a sphere that gives archers explosive arrows, instead of a passive. We have some good spheres like the Monk tranquility aura sphere & boost sphere. These allow for players to dictate what kind of role they want their specific hero to play.

Fourth: Current gear loop is tedious and unrewarding. Effectively, you go into a NM4 map, finish the map, and most of the time the gear you got is worthless. Legendary pieces have too many variables and not enough stat ranges that they are often worthless. Tower Health + Ability Power + Skeletal Archer 3% legendary? Yeah okay, sold.

Fifth: The iPWR cap of 700 means that if you've geared your hero with 700 ipwr pieces of gear, you're stuck either waiting for a new difficulty mode, grinding those small passive %s, or grinding Incursions for 750 gear - which then induces the same problem once you have all of that. The glory of DD1 was that there was a massive amount of rarities within the game, and these rarities would drop at almost all difficulty levels (just like now) the difference was that the higher rarities (or IPWR in this case) would drop less likely depending on how low your difficult was. Imagine playing NM4 and always having a chance to a mini-boss to drop a legendary that was an upgrade of what you currently have. ALWAYS. Add on to the fact that by removing passives, item drops could potentially be used for ANY of your heroes making the grind that much more rewarding.

Sixth: Passives are making the game harder to balance. Because of so much variability and combos, it's extremely difficult to gauge whether a tower is overpowered, maybe a sphere, or is it a passive? Certain situations or combination of other towers with their passives and spheres etc etc. The same can be said for being underpowered.
Seventh: Item sets can still be a thing. My proposed way to handle item sets was that they provided some extraordinary changes and passives to the hero equipping them, of course; but, they can be equipped by ANY hero and the item set bonus changes based on what hero is viewing the item and equipping it. (A la World of Warcraft.) Example: Suit of the Molten Lord would have a list of passives for the Apprentice when he's wearing it, but, if it's in his inventory and you switch to the Abyss Lord, those listed passives are now being viewed as the passives the Abyss Lord would get for wearing it. With this in mind, all armor drops would still be viable for ANY hero to wear, including item sets.

Eighth: Passives should still exist on weapons and relics. Fairly simple - this would allow for some cool effects as we've been seeing on weapons. Trendy could consolidate large passives to these legendary slots as well. (An undead medallion that gives +25-50% bonus damage to Skeletal Archers for instance).

Ninth & Tenth: I already covered spheres. The ipwr 750 gear drops are nice, but if the system changes to a much larger ipwr range, then guaranteed drops would need to be removed. At least guaranteed in the sense of ipwr.

Eleventh: As an alternative, instead of removing passives - the option of just rerolling passives on gear (or stats) Is another possibility. Personally I don't prefer this option, because I feel like passives are making the game more difficult to balance as is.

Twelfth & Thirteenth: Already mentioned that removing passives will allow armor drops to be applicable to all heroes and that ipwr maximums need to huge to allow for a nice rewarding grind. To that end, the higher the ipwr, the lower its drop chance. To a significant degree as well. This is why I said that guaranteed ipwr drops won't work in this theoretical system.

Fourteetnth: Maybe the most important and underrated requirement here is for survival to make a come-back. I can't speak for everyone, but Survival was my go-to mode in DD1. In fact, that's all I played. Survival with Tactical mode on (made heroes invincible but all you could do was repair / upgrade.) Onslaught needs some drastic fixes. For one, I think it needs to be difficult neutral. Meaning all players play the same difficult for each wave (May already be the current case, I forget.) Next, it needs to essentially go on forever with players being able to start the Onslaught wave at their highest previously beaten wave. This is disadvantageous to do though because you won't have your defenses upgraded and ready to kick butt. And more importantly, the further in Onslaught you go, the better chance of higher ipwr drops. In DD1, survival waves went into the dozens. In DD2, you typically won't break 20. I personally loved survival because I didn't have to constantly rebuild my defenses to grind (meaning I didn't have to keep rebuilding when I restarted a map because in survival you just keep going.) I also liked having ample time to max the DU and upgrade everything to the highest tier. AND of course, it's absolutely lovely to see a map littered with amazing drops because you went to a really high wave.

Fifteenth: With Armor Passives gone and the focus shifted to Spheres; when balance changes need to be rolled out for the evolving meta, we'll no longer have to suffer through our hard earned gear being rerolled into trash (I'm looking at you Frosty builds). Instead, spheres will receive the brunt of the changes which means absolutely no grief for us players.


Alright, that's it. I FINALLY finished this bloody thread. Let me know what you guys think. I personally think that removing armor passives is a requirement to keep the long-term of DD2 healthy, many others have also been agreeing with me on this or at the very least some serious alternatives. I think the aspect of gear being applicable to all your heroes will be important as the roster increases and balance becomes a further issue than it already is.


As always guys, thanks for checking out the thread. Liking the thread and commenting on it will help to get Trendy's attention!!

Check out my other threads:

Sincerely, Charr

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Thank you for creating this post, as I think you touched on a large number of hopeful improvement areas for DD2 (a lot of which I would agree could simply be heavily borrowed from what made DD1 so successful / fun, and most of which I'm surprised TE didn't carry over to DD2 from day one...). (P.S. a lot of what I'm about to say is going to sound like I'm just repeating what you've already said, but psychologically-speaking, that's how I agree with people ;D lol - Please bear with me...)

List of things I agree with:

  • Having passives on armor was a silly system since it was first implemented; my major reasoning being the following (NOTE: check out gigazelle's thread from forever ago exhibiting similar ideas here):

    (a.) it makes hero / defense balance impossible at worst and incredibly difficult at best.

    (b.) it practically eliminates the concept of player customization for their heroes, since you have to farm passives on items, rather than designing a character build around spheres, a talent tree, etc.

    (c.) passives that are specific to one hero makes farming upgrades less fun. I very much preferred DD1's item system (no armor passives, more stats on items, armor sets, etc.), where you'd get a rare, powerful item drop in a map, and you had fun trying to decide which character you should give it to, or trying to build an item set around it, rather than having that option taken away in DD2 by an item being obviously useful for only one hero.

    (d.) The goals of both Passives & Spheres in general has never really been clearly defined by Trendy -- Are they supposed to be simple stat increases? Are they supposed to introduce defense mechanics that alter how towers work? Are the effects of Passives & Spheres supposed to be different from one another? I think we could use a huge overhaul for how both Passives & Spheres work, since there doesn't seem to be much rhyme or reason as to what kinds of effects / bonuses have chances to appear on armor and what kinds of effects / bonuses are provided via Spheres. And any system that increases the potential for players to customize their own characters (preferably from the tavern & not via farmed items...) would be awesome.

    (e.) Trendy reallllly needs to make sure that mechanic-changing Passives / Spheres aren't simply better versions of their non-altered counterparts. Ideally, these mechanic-changing effects should follow a "tradeoff" system, which increases the effectiveness of a defense in one area, but decreases it in another -- like having a Fireball Tower that has a bouncing attack that could jump to additional enemies past the first enemy target, provided each successive chained enemy is in close proximity to the previous one, but that would do less damage per enemy as a result OR a Monk Anti-Air Turret that could output massive damage at the cost of reduced firing speed, and being single-target (think TF2's or Plants vs. Zombies' gear-customization-tradeoff system). This would allow different customizations to be useful in different situations, thereby introducing build options that actually feel strategically placed based on map-paremeters [the same concept, if done correctly, would work symbiotically with Trendy's upcoming enemy-group revamp too] AND pandering to players' desires to customize how they use their characters ------> Examples from the current status of DD2 that I can think of off the top of my head that could use some reworking (most of which were previously pointed out in gigazelle's thread linked above):
    -------- (i.) The huntress's Elemental Chaos Uber sphere doesn't change how the Explosion Trap is used (since the removal of enemy resistances -- a change that I agreed with, I should add...); it simply functions as a much much more powerful Explosion trap. There is no "gambit" (i.e. no tradeoff) for using the Elem. Chaos Trap Uber Sphere rather than the Explosion Trap; it's simply just better.
    -------- (ii.) The Abyss Lord's Exploding Archer passive provides an AoE capability to the already powerful Archer defense, without any downside. The passive simply makes a already-good defense type better.
    -------- (iii.) The Frosty Power passive for the Apprentice's Frost Tower adds an additional defense-boosting mechanic to defenses in close proximity to an enemy being slowed, which is a pretty cool idea, but there's no tradeoff ---> An Apprentice made to build Frost Towers WITH the Frosty Power passive is simply more useful than a Frost Tower Apprentice WITHOUT the Frosty Power passive, 100% of the time (Assuming both Apprentices are identical in every other way).

  • We need additional tiers of item quality / rarity (similar to how DD1 had qualities all the way up to Ult++) so that the "gear-ceiling" that DD2 currently suffers from almost completely disappears. This also works to make farming gear in general more fun + makes running Onslaught more worthwhile. (Thread about improving end-game progression / balance, that touches on similar concepts here + thread discussing DD1-esque loot overhaul here)

  • Onslaught, as it currently stands, is painful, tedious, and not very fun, and could probably be improved by stealing ideas from DD1's Survival mode (which offered "Mixed Mode", "Hardcore", & "Pure Strategy" variants) -- (thread offering suggestions for improving Onslaught here).


List of things I disagree with (there weren't many!):

  • I might have read your post incorrectly, but I enjoyed the fact that DD1's Survival mode had a wave cap (for reasons discussed in the "Onslaught Improvement" thread linked above). However, if you were simply suggesting that DD2 should keep Onslaught mode as endless waves, while also introducing a completely new game mode similar to DD1's wave-capped Survival, then I definitely agree with that option!
     ----> The problem with having both game modes exist simultaneously, is that I think players would simply figure out which one of the two (between Onslaught & Survival) is better for farming gear, and everyone would play THAT mode, while the other would practically be left unplayed. Don't get me wrong, I think it could definitely work if Trendy figured out a way to make both useful for farming gear, OR implemented them in such a way that players are intended to gear up in one mode in order to be able to run the other (a form of "game-mode progression" -- concept discussed in thread about improving progression linked above).


In closing, thanks again for creating this post -- I would love for a Dev to read some of the ideas discussed, and hopefully others will eventually show up and voice some other suggested improvements as well!

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Third -  I agree. However the smaller spheres, what they currently have for main 4 heroes, should take the place of those mini passives in my opinion, but should be meaningful. A small passive could take the place of say all the old existing damage increasing passives for cannonball as an example, making that sphere meaningful, and allowing us to dictate what specialization we want to use. All small spheres would be aimed at is damage boosting passives or range passives. Medium spheres would be aimed at the more beneficial and focused passives, such as lightning Aura's attack rate increase (rate isn't speed, rate bypasses speed caps). Large spheres would be what they are now, game changers that alter the way we play, while the ubers could be what they were originally intended, radically changing the way a tower or skill functions. 4 Large, 2 Uber, and however many small and medium it takes to balance out what we have possible with passives in addition to spheres. Example as we have crit passives AND spheres. There should only be 1 tier of crit (not the two you have thankyou, wasteful), and multiple copies to allow a specialization.

Seventh - I agree to this as well. Gear should provide generic bonuses and set bonus like the storm gear for example. Providing meaningful benefits, such as the helmets increased mana cap and chance to rapidly restore mana, the gloves lightning ball addition to attacks, the boots movement boost (because we really shouldn't need to use spheres for this) and ability power splash on drop, and finally the taser suit that can stun enemies if they hit you. These are the kinds of things that should be on gear, meaningful equipment with variation in numbers that can be used by any class. Thus the grind is aimed at better numbers on a gear, rather than trying to even find the desired gear. 

Eighth - I agree, keep passives on weapons and relics to help define builds, though i would like to comment on your earlier statement of explody archer arrows being on spheres. The spheres should have good ones, while there should also be weapons that also provide these unique bonuses such as explody archer arrows. Though no duplicates, like how currently EV2 can get freezing proton on both weapon and relic, the proton should be fused and set to a variable of 4-6 (as each individual can get 2-3). You could have them spawn on both, but not stack, as this allows players more freedom of choice rather than saying "I need both of these to make my build stronger/effective". 

Fourteenth - I like this idea. Onslaught is survival however I think the player should be able to select any wave previously beaten, as such if an uber wave appears at higher difficulty one isn't stuck trying to win that wave with inferior defences, but work your way back up from a slightly easier difficulty while still providing a challenge. That or checkpoint waves that can be continued from including the last wave you managed to complete (every 5? 10?).

That's my opinion on the matter. Glade you finally got it out so I could add my 4 cents. Hope trendy takes it under advisement as I definitely agree. Small gear passives are junk, and the small sphere system should take over in that aspect while gear should provide meaningful and defining bonuses. It also makes it easier to balance as your only looking at how spheres interact with each other rather than spheres and passives (armour sets and special weapons aside). The spheres system should really get the love and focus in needs, I mean the uber spheres were a great way to completely alter the way we play, but weren't capitalized on. Reign in the creativity train (I know how fun it can be) and minimize the damage playing field so you have better direction.

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As an addition I forgot to mention, don't forget to add medals for every onslaught wave completed with increasing returns at higher difficulties. These changes will 

  • Make the game more appealing and have meaninful choices
  • Make your jobs heluva lot easier with more relevant additions to the game and less cleanup work
  • Focus your efforts in each direction, spheres for build focus on small and medium while build changing and defining spheres for large and uber. The same for passives, focused direction on sets that with all pieces have additional effects, and individual pieces also proving meaningful benefits (like the storm gear, just need to add a set bonus to it).

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@Charr Legion quote:

Fourth: Current gear loop is tedious and unrewarding. Effectively, you go into a NM4 map, finish the map, and most of the time the gear you got is worthless. Legendary pieces have too many variables and not enough stat ranges that they are often worthless. Tower Health + Ability Power + Skeletal Archer 3% legendary? Yeah okay, sold.

I can relate to this so hard I'm dieing here, please send help

Laughing-Tom-Cruise-Meme-01.jpg

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@Raghin quote:

Seventh - I agree to this as well. Gear should provide generic bonuses and set bonus like the storm gear for example. Providing meaningful benefits, such as the helmets increased mana cap and chance to rapidly restore mana, the gloves lightning ball addition to attacks, the boots movement boost (because we really shouldn't need to use spheres for this) and ability power splash on drop, and finally the taser suit that can stun enemies if they hit you. These are the kinds of things that should be on gear, meaningful equipment with variation in numbers that can be used by any class. Thus the grind is aimed at better numbers on a gear, rather than trying to even find the desired gear. 

I think you might have misunderstood what I was referencing (I wasn't being very clear.) Item Sets referred to Raid sets in games like WoW or Diablo 3 or what have you. Essentially it's a set of multiple pieces of gear that belong to the same theme and for each piece of gear you have you get a new bonus.

Example: Suit of the Molten Lord (Apprentice Version)

(2) - Flameburst Tower has a 50% larger Area of Effect.

(3) - Frostbite Tower inflicts burning in addition to chilling.

(5) - Flameburst Tower deals +100% damage.


Suit of the Molten Lord (Series EV Version)

(2) - Proton Beams inflict burning in addition to slowing.

(3) - Weapon Manufactorer can have two free additional nodes.

(5) - Weapon Manufactorer deals +1000% damage.


Stuff like that essentially. I believe Trendy is currently working on that system which is why I was mentioning how I think it should work if we removed armor passives.

My recommendation was that the Series EV could equip the SAME Suit of the Molten Lord and get different passive effects. That way the suit isn't designed to be worn by only one hero, but any of the heroes. And players would have to grind more of the item sets they want in order to have It on more than one hero at a time.


EDIT: added a fifteenth topic on the original post regarding the fact that without armor passives, gear won't need to be rerolled when balance changes are made.

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Great thread with great ideas. Trendy NEEDS to rework so many things in order to get this game where it needs to be, and you have put forward so many good suggestions that they should listen to and hopefully implement. (Especially getting rid of passives on armor).

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@Charr Legion quote:

I think you might have misunderstood what I was referencing (I wasn't being very clear.) Item Sets referred to Raid sets in games like WoW or Diablo 3 or what have you. Essentially it's a set of multiple pieces of gear that belong to the same theme and for each piece of gear you have you get a new bonus.

No I understood what you mean't. But having gear only apply a set bonus would mean that gear has no base value aside from stats. Getting different gear pieces would be pointless and only sets and weapons would matter. Thats why I think having meaningful build enhancing passives such as the ones currently existing on the storm gear set is important ONTOP of set bonuses like you mentioned. Thus you can mix and match parts of a set to get the desired result. An example would be using the 3 storm items for its set bonus (whatever it might be) and getting while using your example molten set and gaining its 2 item bonuses (want the beams but not the weapon manufacturing), in addition to, say one meaningful passive on the gear piece, like storm gloves projectile, or storm helmet mana increase and mana gain. Thus we can mix and match gear pieces to meet our needs in two aspects, and keeping it much simpler than what already exists whilst preserving the "any character can use this".

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@Skyaliciouse quote:

I like to make another addition, Set Bonuses should be farmable in form of 750ipwr / Highest ipwr avaliable Summoner_minimap_icon_c.png

Twelfth & Thirteenth: Already mentioned that removing passives will allow armor drops to be applicable to all heroes and that ipwr maximums need to huge to allow for a nice rewarding grind. To that end, the higher the ipwr, the lower its drop chance. To a significant degree as well. This is why I said that guaranteed ipwr drops won't work in this theoretical system.

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@MaryJane quote:

.I stopped reading when u said u want to take the. MOst important and best thing outa the game ...ROFL

What would be your thoughts on any changes? Anything you would like to see?

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Y on. God's. Green earth would u. Want. The game more balanced..!!!!! That = more boring less grind.player to. Player power difference. About all the same which = noobdoys better then anybody. Else. Iill just throw on a. Sphere and this tower. Is good now though hahahhhahah. O hey let me rerolll. My 1000ipwr. Helmet. From hero d too power.hahhahah. .wth.this will never bbe implemented....eveerr. be far worse then it is now...aannd I know no small passivves that r worthless BTW...nvmm this is just awful and. I could write a book about how bad it is...

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I damn shore wouldn't get rid of Passives!!!!!! Hahha..Lottathings I would change but it's pointless to express them...they don't listen...wait they do but to idiots

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I'll make a thread off my. Commpputer. Where. U can actually read. What I write in day or so for ***zz n giggles with my changes.I'd make.n you'll be bowing at my feet loll..changes that don't involve. Revamping!!! The entire game like this guy wants!  Hahhahaahh

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This Guy really thinks that jackpot passive is useless????  Hahahaha yea tell that to savage who has a jackpot small passive character just for that that makes 100K a game.....I'm done

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For those that are unaware, MaryJane simply seems to be a troll that is trying to flood threads with important topics with incoherent insults and jabs. Hopefully someone like [[93890,users]] might do something to trim this excessive flow of jiberish.

As far as the OP... Absolutely amazing job. Could not agree more on pretty much all points.

As to those that are requesting his suggestion of removing the passives AND rerolling, I believe that that would be excessive overkill. One major issue with finding improvements currently, is that it is very easy to get near 90% of the max stats power possible with little effort as it stands. Leaving little reward to be gained in further drops.

Removing the passive system as he suggests would make the stats on the gear, and the IPWR be the only important factors left really. Having already removed 2 compound RNG factors, adding a system to remove one of the only 2 remaining RNG systems on the gear would nearly remove the RNG all together. The idea is to create a healthy balance of grinding that keeps players around, while still rewarding them for doing so. 

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@xArcAngel quote:

As far as the OP... Absolutely amazing job. Could not agree more on pretty much all points.

As to those that are requesting his suggestion of removing the passives AND rerolling, I believe that that would be excessive overkill. One major issue with finding improvements currently, is that it is very easy to get near 90% of the max stats power possible with little effort as it stands. Leaving little reward to be gained in further drops.

Removing the passive system as he suggests would make the stats on the gear, and the IPWR be the only important factors left really. Having already removed 2 compound RNG factors, adding a system to remove one of the only 2 remaining RNG systems on the gear would nearly remove the RNG all together. The idea is to create a healthy balance of grinding that keeps players around, while still rewarding them for doing so. 

In regards to the low amounts of RNG after passive removal - DD1 didn't suffer from this problem because endgame gear rolled all of the 8 core stats. Sometimes with negatives to stats. I'm not saying that I'd recommend this, but I think it would be an interesting concept to play around with bringing back. Attack Speed & Range are currently back-burner stats. I would actually like to see gear drop both Tower stats and Hero stats without compromising the other because you can only have two stats total.

  • iPWR 1368 Chest Piece
  • +258 Tower Damage
  • +203 Tower Speed
  • +245 Tower Health
  • -85 Tower Range
  • +532 Hero Health
  • +233 Hero Damage
  • -103 Hero Attack Speed
  • +423 Ability Power

^^ That's an example of what DD1 Gear would look like for those who haven't played. Essentially you got the best (and worst) of both worlds..


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@Charr Legion quote:

-snip-

My commend was not to discredit your idea, with the RNG factor of making higher rarities spawn less, I think your idea is a far healthier balance than what currently exists. I was just commenting on those also wanting to be able to roll those stats along with it.

I certainly would not argue with a 3rd or 4th stat being added to the gear though. Definately would help the health of the system if passives were to be removed. At the very least, I'd like to see Relics get a 3rd stat unique to them (i.e. medalians getting tower speed) just to make item diversity more interesting, without making the RNG as overly compounded as it is currently.

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@xArcAngel quote:

@Charr Legion quote:

-snip-

My commend was not to discredit your idea, with the RNG factor of making higher rarities spawn less, I think your idea is a far healthier balance than what currently exists. I was just commenting on those also wanting to be able to roll those stats along with it.

I certainly would not argue with a 3rd or 4th stat being added to the gear though. Definately would help the health of the system if passives were to be removed. At the very least, I'd like to see Relics get a 3rd stat unique to them (i.e. medalians getting tower speed) just to make item diversity more interesting, without making the RNG as overly compounded as it is currently.

My response was mostly general, not to defend myself but to have a further discussion with anyone who had read your comment.

Yeah I agree this the medallion concept - I think they should get both Tower Speed and Tower Range to further augment player customization and choice. It would also be fun if items had 4 stats, two guaranteed Hero oriented and two tower oriented. That way you don't have to farm for two sets of gear / two identical characters.

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Another thing to consider would be when you were leveling up say..a staff in DD1, after so many upgrades you would get an option to add another projectile, in this case maybe speed of fire could be considered?. While some of you were lucky enough in DD2 to get say, a 4x Armor Cleanser Bow... I have farmed that map over a hundred times and only gotten 2. I would gladly give up a few upgrade slots in order to adjust the speed of fire... while I don't mind grinding for gear THAT specific grind has stopped due to general frustration. 

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@Charr Legion quote:

In regards to the low amounts of RNG after passive removal - DD1 didn't suffer from this problem because endgame gear rolled all of the 8 core stats. Sometimes with negatives to stats. I'm not saying that I'd recommend this, but I think it would be an interesting concept to play around with bringing back. Attack Speed & Range are currently back-burner stats. I would actually like to see gear drop both Tower stats and Hero stats without compromising the other because you can only have two stats total.

  • iPWR 1368 Chest Piece
  • +258 Tower Damage
  • +203 Tower Speed
  • +245 Tower Health
  • -85 Tower Range
  • +532 Hero Health
  • +233 Hero Damage
  • -103 Hero Attack Speed
  • +423 Ability Power

^^ That's an example of what DD1 Gear would look like for those who haven't played. Essentially you got the best (and worst) of both worlds..

 - As Charr has pointed out, removing passives from armor entirely + simultaneously implementing something along the lines of DD1's many-statted armor pieces (w/ 8 stats total rather than 2...) would actually increase the amount of RNG involved (in a good way), and would help to make farming items in DD2 fun again (all in IMO).

 - In DD2, you only have to worry about rolling for 2 stats, and it's pretty obvious which 2 stats are best to stack depending on the hero. With minimal variety in stat contributions from items, it's far too easy to get an "almost-perfect" item (i.e. the 2 stats you want w/ a good-enough passive roll). And even if you eventually manage to find an upgrade to your "almost-perfect" item, the stat differences will probably be minimal (i.e. you only get a handful of extra stats between ipwr 700 vs. ipwr 701-750).

 - People have criticized DD1's RNG-heavy item-stat-rolling system, but, in my opinion again, the system worked in its favor because...
(a.) you didn't need perfect stat rolls on your items in order to win on end-game content (like you do in NM4 for DD2...) -- Ex:) I used to use a Def. Health / Def. Power EV1 in DD1, and appreciated extra Def. Speed + Def. Range whenever possible, but was more than willing to take a hit with negative stats in those areas since I didn't really need them, as long as my Health & Dmg were high (for Buff Beams)
(b.) item stats were vastly different between the separate types of items themselves + separate item quality- / rarity-tiers (Myth, Trans, Sup., etc.), which meant that upgrades generally gave you a significant amount of extra stats (amplified by the fact that each successive item-quality received a larger armor-set bonus -- cmp. with minimal stat upgrades in DD2).
(c.) There were more options for what constituted an upgrade in DD1, since you could receive an item that simply had higher stats, or an item that included more of the helpful stat areas themselves!

 - Summarizing points above: Receiving an upgrade in DD1 was immensely more satisfying than doing the same in DD2, because generally, the stat improvements you'd receive were much more significant (than their DD2 counterparts), and DD1's relatively-heavy, 8-stat RNG rolls meant that upgrades were much easier to come by! (IMPORTANT NOTE: Heavy RNG is only a problem when you need "perfect" gear rolls in order to beat game content!!)

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@xArcAngel quote:

I certainly would not argue with a 3rd or 4th stat being added to the gear though. Definately would help the health of the system if passives were to be removed. At the very least, I'd like to see Relics get a 3rd stat unique to them (i.e. medalians getting tower speed) just to make item diversity more interesting, without making the RNG as overly compounded as it is currently.

The problem with anything getting tower speed at present is there are unknown hard caps for speed on many items, for example proton beams outright cap out at 100 speed, whereas chaos trap has an increadibly low cap somewhere around 2 seconds that could previously be reached with speedy frosty beams, buff beams, speed spec and who knows if it could have gone even lower with lavamancer eruption (tho i think that ones a rate boost). The way in which speed is used on each defense would need to be evaluated (remember the old geyser trap meta?) so as to be balanced but fair with investment. All in all, we desperately need that revamp that they are constantly mentioning, the sphere remaster that Charr Legion is going for is one step in the right direction. certainly additional item tiers that surpass current would also be excellent with passives removed so that they function properly. We also need proper tower progression from normal to nm4. With all these changes, additional levels wouldn't really be relevant and would just wreck gear collection in my opinion as its just chasing more "perfect rolls" on gear, gear tiers are the way to go for sure.

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@Raghin quote:

The problem with anything getting tower speed at present is there are unknown hard caps for speed on many items, for example proton beams outright cap out at 100 speed, whereas chaos trap has an increadibly low cap somewhere around 2 seconds that could previously be reached with speedy frosty beams, buff beams, speed spec and who knows if it could have gone even lower with lavamancer eruption (tho i think that ones a rate boost). The way in which speed is used on each defense would need to be evaluated (remember the old geyser trap meta?) so as to be balanced but fair with investment...

  Defense speed considerations: Word, I'm all for Defense Speed making a comeback as a defense stat, but as you mentioned, there would have to be some fairly heavy tinkering, implemented at the same time, with both (a.) an increase in the amount of stat areas themselves that roll on items (which it seems we're agreeing would be a good thing) and (b.) a reworking of how Defense Speed contribute to defenses in general (i.e. changing how the stat scales the 'quickness' of defenses + a re-evaluation of the current hard caps) -- I know I'm not really saying anything you haven't already said, but psychologically-speaking, re-wording things is how I agree with people ;)

@Raghin quote:

All in all, we desperately need that revamp that they are constantly mentioning, the sphere remaster that Charr Legion is going for is one step in the right direction. certainly additional item tiers that surpass current would also be excellent with passives removed so that they function properly. We also need proper tower progression from normal to nm4. With all these changes, additional levels wouldn't really be relevant and would just wreck gear collection in my opinion as its just chasing more "perfect rolls" on gear, gear tiers are the way to go for sure.

 → Character-build customization improvements: Also in agreement with your other comment. If what TE has been saying about the eventual enemy revamp is true, and we'll actually have to strategize a bit with our builds in order to counter specific groups of enemies, then moving the bulk of Defense customization off of armor passives and into the hands of the Player in the form of ["Sphere"-based builds, talent trees, etc. etc.] would be a huge improvement IMO.

  Ideal enemy revamp scenario: My idealized scenario for the enemy revamp is one where, at the beginning of playing a map, the game will provide some detailed information about what kinds of enemy groups / hoards you'll be fighting throughout the coming waves (I think these groups could be easily theme-based, as a similar concept to Onslaught wave themes, but hopefully with better / more-interesting mob combinations). If I recall correctly, the whole purpose of the Enemy Revamp was to introduce a system where a single build setup won't necessarily be the most effective setup every time you play that map, implying that you'll actually need to think for a bit at the start of a map in coming up with a build.

 → Issue w/ current armor-passive system vs. eventual enemy revamp: Assuming the Enemy Revamp will successfully reward Players who are able to vary their setups based on what kinds of enemies they'll be facing, keeping the current armor-passive system will exponentially increase the amount of level-50 builders we need in general, since, again, character-builds are locked behind the items that character has equipped, and having to carry multiple sets of build-specced-armor would worsen the already-present inventory-management problem (and no one wants to have to create 3+ differently-specced builders of the same Hero class...).

 → Possible Solutions:

  • "Sphere Customization" : Again, TE could simply rework Hero-specialization away from armor-passives (which I would love to see removed entirely, TBH...) in favor of Hero-specializations that are Sphere-built (or any equivalent specialization system that simply puts more power in the hands of the Player, and allows for quick & easy Hero-customization changes on the fly from the tavern, or perhaps even during Build Waves).
  • "Loadout- / Gambit-System" : I understand that it would take a very long time to (i.) design, (ii.) implement, & (iii.) balance, but stemming off of a suggestion I remember reading from gigazelle , I was brainstorming / daydreaming of a DD2, where the available Abilities / Defenses of each Hero class operated under a "Loadout"-esque system, which could provide a clickable-arrow-button on the icon of every Hero-Ability and buildable Defense (i.e. the interface at the bottom of the screen that is mapped to the Number Keys), that when opened for a specific ability or defense, brings up a "drop-down" menu offering variations of that same ability or defense (i.e. the "Loadout" part of the idea).
     -----> Continuing that thought, the aforementioned variation-options for Abilities & Defenses could operate under a "Gambit"-esque system, offering different flavors of the same ability / defense that would either be more / less effective depending on the situation you want to use them in (I'm thinking along the lines of the customization options available in games like Team Fortress 2 & Plants Vs. Zombies).
     -----> Ex 1:) If you're playing as a "TF2 Medic", the stock Heal Gun slowly charges up a bar when you're 'linked' to an ally, that upon filling up, can be used to provide you and said ally 8 seconds of invulnerability. However, you can swap out this stock Heal Gun for the "Kritzkrieg" heal gun, providing a +25%-speed-increase for the charge-up bar, but that removes the 8-sec invulnerability effect of the full-bar-activation, and instead provides 8-sec guaranteed crit-dmg for the linked ally. As one might expect, the "gambit" in play is a loss of the invulnerability-effect in favor of the bar-fill speed increase + periodic, guaranteed crit. damage. Neither weapon loadout option is necessarily more powerful than the other, but more customization-power is successfully put into the hands of the Player and they can choose depending on their playstyle.
     -----> Ex 2:) P.vs.Z does things a little bit differently, in the sense that item loadouts are strictly cosmetic, but there are a ton of variations for the playable classes themselves. For instance, if you're playing as a "Chomper" -- a melee-based, venus-flytrap-looking class for Plants, that can "eat" enemies from behind (for a one-hit KO that leaves the Chomper unable to attack for a short time period) -- you can play as the "Default" Chomper that works normally and has 150 health, or perhaps you want to play as the "Count Chompula" variation, that has a lower Max Health value, but that gains 50 health upon successfully "eating" an enemy. Again, the "gambit" (loss in one area w/ a gain in another) is fairly evident here, and neither option is necessarily more powerful than the other.
     -----> A DD2 w/ Loadout- / Gambit-System: Imagine how fun it would be if DD2's Hero-Abilities / Defenses operated on the same principle? Ex. 1:) Maybe you're playing as the Apprentice and you don't want to use the "Default" Fireball Tower, so you click on a "Loadout" button on the Fireball Tower icon, which brings up a "Drop-down menu" of variations to the tower. One of these variations could be the already-implemented "Flamethrower-Tower Uber Sphere" variation (i.e. you gain 360-degree angle of attack + a constant stream of damage, at the cost of a huge range reduction). Perhaps there's another option for the Fireball Tower that gives the tower a "bouncing attack", that continues to bounce between enemies after hitting the first target, provided that they are in close proximity with one another, at the cost of reduced damage and the removal of the AoE-explosion effect. As mentioned earlier, this system would require (i.) a lot of creativity for variation ideas (but we, the DD2 community, could help with that part!), (ii.) careful balancing so that there isn't an obvious "best tower variation", (iii.) additional animations / tower-skins for the variations. Ex. 2:) Variations could even be as simple as being able to alter the Monk's "Chi Blast" ability so that it knocks-up enemies rather than pushing them back. Plus, think of how fun it would be to experiment with all of these variations, in order to find the most effective way to deal with a specific enemy group (it would meld so well with the Enemy Revamp!).
 → In Closing... I'd be more than happy with a Sphere customization option (as mentioned in the first bullet), but honestly, I feel like DD2 could be among the "Steam greats", if Trendy was able to successfully implement something along the lines of the "Loadout- / Gambit-System" mentioned in the 2nd bullet. It wouldn't happen overnight, obviously, but I'd be willing to wait years for it to be implemented if it was implemented successfully!
 → Request for Dev Input: Are there any future DD2 plans to implement anything along the lines of the aforementioned suggestions iamisom ? Maybe it could work as a game design for DD3? ;) [I would shell out many monies for such a game...]

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