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mayhem_zero

Other ideas for Update 4 or beyond

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While reading through the previous discussion on the Genie bug fix, I discovered some ideas posted by CrzyRndm which seem worth possibly pursuing.


 In the future I'll be pushing for balance changes to heroes, abilities, towers, items, and enemies. Not all of those will be buffs to the player (Lab Assault, Jester, Gas Traps) although a good number will be (SnD and Lightning Tower, Darkness traps, mana bomb, barbarian leap/pound). The status quo here is terrible with the same defences, the same heroes, almost all the same weapons, the same pets, and the same enemies posing a threat in every single game.

    On top of all that, I also have several systems in mind that can be slowly developed as I get time to add interesting new gameplay possibilities (some proposed examples, a purpose for the elemental system beyond damage resistance, meaningful differences between the armour types, a total rework of how item max upgrades are determined to finally knock the modulo on its head without flooding the game with high quality items, adding some variety to the behaviour of staff and spear weapons, ...)

Some of those things have already been addressed with the Updates which have been added so far, but I'm hoping that we may be able to implement some of the other ideas, probably easier if one or more of the current CDT members have more information than that in the quote above.

Thoughts and ideas would be appreciated.

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Here's what the CDT did about the modulo:

 Update 1 - The Buccaneer Bay reward weapons roll almost perfectly to the max level roll, so they have basically no rollover.

 Update 2 and 3 - Rewards from Embermount and later use a new system for calculating # of upgrades which does not roll over.

Existing items still roll over.  There was a lot of debate about this already and i think existing items are unlikely to change in this respect.

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Is it possible to make this change


@Plane quote:

 Update 2 and 3 - Rewards from Embermount and later use a new system for calculating # of upgrades which does not roll over.

apply to things like armor or pets on individual maps? (Assuming they don't already)

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Things I'm interested in discussing for Update 4:

- Ways at making Initiate more viable for NMHC maps. There has been plenty of discussions on this previously.
----> My suggestion in summary for the Initiate would be, make her Ability 1 -- Remote Defense Boost as a Tower Boost Ability similar to Monk, in scaling and everything, except her ability affects / boosts the attack range, rate and/or damage resistance of Towers/Minions.
----> Allowing her Enemy Drain ability to apply on Bosses with slightly reduced intensity(for the lack of a better word) would make having an Initiate as a support hero in Boss waves more viable than she is right now.
----> Pet DPS scaling on Initiate is also not the same as Monk, I might be wrong here as I'm not recalling it correctly I think, either way if it is indeed not the same as Monk then it should be similar just a bit lower DPS of course, since female char and all.

- Ways at making Countess more viable for NMHC maps. There has been plenty of discussions on this previously as well.
----> Her current CtA mana costs are obnoxiously high. I think all heros who have boosts(as long as its not a self boost) should have the same mana cost ramp up to keep things fair. There is no reason to use CtA or Initiate's enemy drain if they dry out mana far faster than Monk's boosts. Apart from fixing mana costs, I really dunno how this can be improved.
----> Joust is just a dumb self-suicide skill. I would much rather prefer if Countess gets Joust replaced with something like the Proton Blast(balanced of course) which allows much better control over the ability.

- Fixing certain things with Ranger:
----> First one would be reducing the ridiculous Invisibility Field mana ramp up costs for Ranger. It's just too high in comparison. You can go through waves upon waves being fully invisible as a Huntress without breaking the mana bank! Compare that to a Ranger it just horrible high mana costs. Needs to be just a tad higher than Huntress.
----> Also fixing the bug which causes Huntress's Invisibility Field to be deactivated or get bugged when she is under Ranger's Invisibility.
----> And removing towers from being invisible, this is just counterproductive in almost all maps. I can't think of more than 1 scenario where I would want to have aggro from Towers/Minions removed. The only time you would want them to lose aggro is when towers are being whacked and are critically low HP so that gives you time to repair(early NMHC scenarios). In that case also, just better of using some other support character than Ranger. LOL! So yeah, skip towers being invisible.
----> Making his Tuxedo Skin scale in Hero HP like on Huntress SL skin does. Currently it doesn't scale like Huntress SL Skin, which IMO is basically broken. This really needs to be fixed. my 3.5K Hero HP Tux Ranger has somewhat less HP than my 3K Hero HP SL Huntress.

- Making SnDs & BBs more viable for NMHC: (Can be controversial, but I'd still push for it!)
----> Their DPS is really wonderful now compared to when I was last playing the game, but their DU cost is still not justified. Same for Bowling Balls(dunno if they got any DPS buff).
----> I use SnD as aggro blocking walls on my Sky City Minionless Build and sometimes in Mistymire, Moraggo etc. I would use them more often on other maps if their DU count wasn't horribly high. This will require some testing on how much it should be reduced at so that it doesn't make them OP.
----> 7 DU LTs have made everything else look like a joke in comparison. Even Harpoons. So as a placeholder -- I'd say 5 DU should be a start to test for SnDs. And 4 to test BBs. Also reducing Bouncers to 3 DU and Spike Blocks to 2 DU would make mid to high end-game Squire builds appealing, much more than they are right now.
----> Numbers are again "placeholders for testing". Don't pitch-fork me.

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I agree with everything in Mambo's post, but I would add 2 things:

1. Add HP and damage scaling to Jetpacking Bounty Hunter costume. (EV 1.5 buff, not 1.75)
2. Give SnD tower better HP scaling. An SnD has ~2% less HP than a 2 DU physical wall. Since SnD turrets actively damage enemies, they draw aggro, whereas Physical walls do not. While Physical walls will take the occasional ogre hit, SnD's will ALWAYS draw aggro and a hit. Therefore I think they could use either and HP or resistance buff.

Edit:
Regarding the Squire tower DU: I would go so far as to say that there isn't a good justification for any squire tower to cost more than 6 DU. Bowling ball turrets have an awful detection cone and can only hit one enemy, and SnD turrets have no range and will constantly be taking damage. Lightning towers and Deadly Strikers have good damage and good range, which justifies the DU cost. I can't see the reasons that justify the Squire's turret costs.

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 I would go so far as to say that there isn't a good justification for any squire tower to cost more than 6 DU.

Precisely. The only reason why Squire Towers were meta during when I was last active was becasue App Towers were total garbage after the 7.1 or v7.16(can't remember the patch number exactly) nerf bat on them shortly after Mistymire release.
I hadn't seen anyone using Apprentice towers(apart from Fire) since then, until in 2016 when I got back and read some of them were made much more viable(maybe little too much! :-P ). And Fire tower itself was only used by a select few in a select few maps.

And now that you mention this:

1. Add HP and damage scaling to Jetpacking Bounty Hunter costume. (EV 1.5 buff, not 1.75)

I'd go one step further and say make tad better than EV 1.75. My reasoning would be, unlocking this costume is just dumb annoying now that Trans Survivalist cheesing was fixed(which I'm not sure when and why this was done). Fixing this achievement serves no purpose other than to punish players who weren't around to benefit from it when it was cheese-able. Yet another problem with elitism with regards to fixing such things in the game. And I can already bet that most of those who probably voted for this change/fix, in all likelihood they already had this achievement to being with, my gut feeling/guess!
I vividly remember helping something like 150-200 people for free with this awful achievement back when I was active and when it was cheesable. Dunno if that thread still exists or not(at least I couldn't find it), Thread title was something along the lines of -- "Want Effortless Help with Trans Survivalist", if I remember it right.

Anyways, so yeah, the current difficulty spike to unlock the costume doesn't justify it being utterly useless. Visually it looks nice!

So kind of TL;DR for Bounty Hunter Costume:
IMO there can be either of these two things done --
1. If status quo is maintained regarding start waves, then make the Bounty Hunter tad better than the EV1.75 in every aspect HP, DMG scaling and Jetpack time +5 secs more than EV1.75. So that at least it will make people who weren't able to cheese it feel somewhat rewarded and have a sense of pride and accomplishment(thanks again, EA!).
Or
2. If the achievement is made cheeseable again, then just go with the EV 1.5 levels of scaling for it.
I think #2 should be done, just make that achievement cheeseable again. :D


Regarding SnD HP I dunno much as to how I feel about this -- since I use them as aggro blocks, by the time they start getting one or two hits from Ogres, the Ogres just melt anyways as they've been receiving damage either from the LTs or DSTs or DMG-ALL Roll. But yeah they do take a bit of damage from Kobolds and Copters though. Some damage resistance buff would certainly make them wonderful to use.

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Some things that I would like to add/agree on would be based on the viability of other towers, and adding new strategies (buffing towers but not to the extreme that lightning towers have been buffed, more like incremental changes).


Bowling Ball Towers - I agree with making the DU cost of bowling ball towers lower. They are not able to pierce in a straight line like harpoons, have a very tiny cone of attack, and can't attack air units. This leads to only have specific use cases. I know they got a slight DPS boost in a previous update with the attack animation scaling better, but I think the lowered DU cost would see them implemented in other builds. Because of this specific use I think the lowered DU cost adds some balance without making these overpowered. I'd also be in favor a slight boost to damage or a slight boost to the knockback effect as an alternative or in addition.

Spike Blockade - Reducing cost of DU here too. The EV physical barrier at 5 DU has way more health than spike blockade, and it will cost 6 DU to cover the same area. I know that spike blockades have damage, but in nightmare they are not being used for their damaging effects.

Magic Blockade - Low cost of 1 DU, give it a slight buff to HP? Should still be below a spike blockade though

Magic Missile Tower - Single tower DPS, was given a slight buff in previous patch. Another small buff for this tower? Seems like there aren't many builds using this.

Fireball Tower - Give this tower a slight increase in the splash damage radius it creates?

Darkness Trap - Use cases seem to be very very rarely. Any chance the duration that the enemy loses the target can be increased (slightly more useful against Ogres then)? It also doesn't seem to work on Djinn or Sharken and barely works on Ogres half the time. Maybe a decrease in DU cost here too? Either way, not sure if even these changes would make it that great.

Enrage Aura - Decrease DU cost. Any other way to make these a little more useful?


I'm only advocating for smaller incremental changes to make things better, not to make things completely overpowered. Hoping to make things more interesting or have more variety in builds or ideas. 


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@Hock3y quote:Bowling Ball Towers - I agree with making the DU cost of bowling ball towers lower. They are not able to pierce in a straight line like harpoons, have a very tiny cone of attack, and can't attack air units. This leads to only have specific use cases. 

I think they're already good and don't need a buff.  They are limited to specific uses, but I don't think that's a problem.


Spike Blockade - Reducing cost of DU here too. The EV physical barrier at 5 DU has way more health than spike blockade, and it will cost 6 DU to cover the same area. I know that spike blockades have damage, but in nightmare they are not being used for their damaging effects.

Magic Blockade - Low cost of 1 DU, give it a slight buff to HP? Should still be below a spike blockade though

Both of these have niche uses in NM but are almost useless, so I wouldn't be opposed to a buff.  Squire walls are quite useful for new players so a buff should probably change how they scale into endgame but leave early game alone.  I'd leave the DU cost alone so that early game isn't affected.

App walls are nice for new players who start out using app only, before they've learned about using multiple characters, but they're really not very good at any point of the game.  There were some other discussions of what to do with them in the forum, if anyone can find them . . .


Magic Missile Tower - Single tower DPS, was given a slight buff in previous patch. Another small buff for this tower? Seems like there aren't many builds using this.

That's because they only hit a single target with no splash damage and miss most of the time unless they're placed very carefully.  Buffing their damage or attack rate won't change that, the same way buffing Slice 'n' Dice damage to crazy levels didn't make it into a useful tower.  But like SnD, MM is useful in early game.  I wouldn't be against a buff to MM damage scaling in endgame, but if you want people to use it you'll probably have to come up with another way to make it more useful.


Fireball Tower - Give this tower a slight increase in the splash damage radius it creates?

They're already pretty good.  I don't think they really need a buff.  If people supported this I wouldn't be against it, though, since I don't think it'll change much.


Darkness Trap - Use cases seem to be very very rarely. Any chance the duration that the enemy loses the target can be increased (slightly more useful against Ogres then)? It also doesn't seem to work on Djinn or Sharken and barely works on Ogres half the time. Maybe a decrease in DU cost here too? Either way, not sure if even these changes would make it that great.

The original "lose target" effect of darkness traps is almost completely useless, but they also remove elemental affinity, and unlilke strength drain auras they do so permanently, only cost 3 DU, and can last for an entire map without repairs.  They're excellent in LT builds – if you're not on survival, you can generally place them on spawns because LTs kill djinn before they can unsummon.  Otherwise you'll have to place them more strategically, but they're still very good.

These traps were not used very often before the LT buff, and if LTs get nerfed people might stop using them again.


Enrage Aura - Decrease DU cost. Any other way to make these a little more useful?

I love enrage auras, but I have to admit gas is usually better.  I would support a lower DU cost.

When are they useful?  Not too often.  Enrage auras can be really good for maps where you aren't trying to kill enemies (like Boss Gauntlet on Crystalline Dimension), but there are some other uses for them as well.  Did you know wyverns are affected by enrage?  It helps to have one on the north core on ToW fairy/seahorse runs to keep the fish-wyverns away.  

But gas traps cost less and don't need repairs, so most maps gas is a better choice.  Most people think of enrage as a joke aura.

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@Plane quote:the same way buffing Slice 'n' Dice damage to crazy levels didn't make it into a useful tower.

That was because the Slice N' Dice had more than one problem performing in Nightmare. Damage dealt is not the only factor. I'd also argue that 2x the damage of harpoons also isn't that crazy.

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The only place I ever found a use for Slice n' Dice was the Raining Goblins challenge. The huge number of enemies dropping kept them spun up the entire wave.

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