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PropheticPlatypus

Are Class Based Disciplines Good for Build Diversity?

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Hi all! First off, I want to say that I think the changes to races/classes/disciplines sounds amazing. I'm super on board with almost everything that was presented. This really seems like the kind of build diversity MMOs need.

HOWEVER, I'm worried that the disciplines that are available to all, yet have perks to specific classes, are going to harm that build diversity. 

I hope this discussion doesn't get moved to a class specific forum. I'm going to use the Druid as an example, because I'm most familiar with that class, but this is really about the system as a whole.

Naiad seems like a great option for druids (or any class) that wants to boost their healing output! If that's your playstyle, go for it. But Dryad? It helps everyone heal, but it gives druids an even bigger boost than anyone else. If they're otherwise tuned to be about equally helpful, it seems dryads will get significantly more out of this than other classes, and will take it disproportionately. If Naiad, Pixie and Dryad all give buffs to healing/support ability, why go out of your way to make some more appealing for specific classes?

(On a related note, if druids can go the route of melee weapon focus with Scimitar Mastery, why not let them grab Blade Mastery?)

Thanks for the discussion!

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A mix of all types of disciplines is good for build diversity, though I don't think the majority of disciplines should be available to all. 

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Remember what the devs said, they are not going to try and make all builds equal.  There will be some very strong builds and some very bad ones, but so long as you have a variety of good builds and not just one or two then that's fine.  They also said that throwing in 100 disciplines with 200-300 individual skills into the game right now is going to be imbalanced as hell not to mention buggy, everything is subject to change and tweaking.  Disciplines and skills are going to be changed, adjusted or even outright removed from the game depending on how testing goes.

Edited by jasta85
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Well that is one thing thats interesting, they are certainly not created equal. I mean lets take bard.

It has a single rune giving 4 brand new, powerful abilities. Then it has its own two unique minor runes that further support it. No other rune can say the same.

And if you add in the other rune that has songs then thats basically a entire class by itself. 

I would even say that taking the bard rune changes a class more than the difference between the assassin and duelist. 

 

I would suggest things as powerful and mechanic changing as this be pushed to promotion classes and not just a discipline rune anyone can take. 

Edited by Vectious

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Oh, I totally get that some builds will be stronger than others. In a perfect world, builds would be near-perfectly balanced with others in their respective roles. That's not possible, but it's an admirable goal. And some people will go for flavor over pure power, which is their prerogative. 

My only point is that making some disciplines overwhelmingly superior for some classes seems to actively go against that goal.

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I think its great if one really wants to specialize in their chosen role. If your Druid wants to focus on healing then those disciplines allow you to do that.

 

EDIT: and yeah perfect balance or even close balance has never been their goal with this game.

Edited by pang

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4 minutes ago, pang said:

I think its great if one really wants to specialize in their chosen role. If your Druid wants to focus on healing then those disciplines allow you to do that.

With all due respect, I don't think you're getting my point. I 100% AGREE that if a druid wants to specialize in healing, then they should. 

My point is when comparing two healing support classes, Cleric & Druid for instance. Both want to specialize in healing. Dryad clearly gives more to Druid than Cleric, even though it is available to cleric. Thus, Naiad or Pixie are a superior choices for that cleric. I don't see how the decision to give Druids more benefit from Dryad helps build diversity. Why not make Pixie, Naiad and Dryad give increased support abilities in distinct ways, but make them all more or less equally appealing to both Druid and Cleric? 

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3 minutes ago, PropheticPlatypus said:

With all due respect, I don't think you're getting my point. I 100% AGREE that if a druid wants to specialize in healing, then they should. 

My point is when comparing two healing support classes, Cleric & Druid for instance. Both want to specialize in healing. Dryad clearly gives more to Druid than Cleric, even though it is available to cleric. Thus, Naiad or Pixie are a superior choices for that cleric. I don't see how the decision to give Druids more benefit from Dryad helps build diversity. Why not make Pixie, Naiad and Dryad give increased support abilities in distinct ways, but make them all more or less equally appealing to both Druid and Cleric? 

Things won't all be equal, that's by design.

Besides the Discs they showed us this week are just the first batch that were ready, there will be tons more by the time we get to live so likely each class will have its fair share of options.

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5 minutes ago, pang said:

Things won't all be equal, that's by design.

Besides the Discs they showed us this week are just the first batch that were ready, there will be tons more by the time we get to live so likely each class will have its fair share of options.

Yes, perfect equality is not the end goal. I never said it was. But obviously a rough balance is.

Whether or not there are more disciples to come is irrelevant. And you didn't address my question. 

How does making some disciplines unequivocally empower one class over another, in performing the same role, help build diversity?

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1 minute ago, PropheticPlatypus said:

Yes, perfect equality is not the end goal. I never said it was. But obviously a rough balance is.

Whether or not there are more disciples to come is irrelevant. And you didn't address my question. 

How does making some disciplines unequivocally empower one class over another, in performing the same role, help build diversity?

I did answer it with my first post. It allows classes to specialize. Its gives options. It'll give each class its own unique flavor as well if Discs are not one size fits all so to speak.  You can either start with your base kit and expand to other roles with Discs that offer things beyond the scope of your base or can you hyper focus on that one role that builds on and improves your base kit. . Options, makes for diverse builds and classes.

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38 minutes ago, pang said:

I did answer it with my first post. It allows classes to specialize. Its gives options. It'll give each class its own unique flavor as well if Discs are not one size fits all so to speak.  You can either start with your base kit and expand to other roles with Discs that offer things beyond the scope of your base or can you hyper focus on that one role that builds on and improves your base kit. . Options, makes for diverse builds and classes.

No, your first post did not mention disciplines which favor one class over another. All disciplines allow classes to specialize--that obvious and not the point I'm making. 

Edit: I apologize if my point was unclear. I am ONLY discussing specific disciplines which seem to help individual classes over others. I do not see how THAT one decision helps diversity. Instead, it seems to pigeonhole people into optimal builds. It seems like the conversation keeps freewheeling away from that point. 

Edited by PropheticPlatypus

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So whats is your problem? People already said balancing isnt the focus and you agreed.

A healer class being favored when using a healing Disc makes perfect sense. I believe there should also be a example of this with melee Discs, no? So in the end you have some sort of equilibrium...

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12 minutes ago, BarriaKarl said:

So whats is your problem? People already said balancing isnt the focus and you agreed.

A healer class being favored when using a healing Disc makes perfect sense. I believe there should also be a example of this with melee Discs, no? So in the end you have some sort of equilibrium...

I agreed that perfect balance wasn't the goal. 

I think that meaningful questions when choosing optimal disciplines is good for build diversity. Dryad is available to all classes, yet giving specific Druid benefits makes it an obviously sub-par choice for other classes. 

The way it seems now, clerics and druids who want to specialize in healing/support don't have that meaningful decision. Dryad seems optimal over Naiad/Pixie for Druids, and Naiad/Pixie seems optimal over Dryad for Clerics. Removing the Druid portion from Dryad seems like it would increase the number of meaningful options for players. 

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It seems like your fixated on the "Enhanced Druid Orbs +90," but there are at least two other considerations. 

1. The first ability granted by the discipline creates heal orbs, which likely fall under the Druid Orbs category and is just poorly named.

2. The "Take Root, Passive: Standing Still Buffs Healing Bonus" and "Blast of Leaves, Heal: Channeled Cone AOE" are strong game play limiters against mobility. If I'm running a Druid in my scouting party or escort group and we're always on the move, I'm not going to take a discipline that incentives standing still.

 

So in a situation where consideration 1 is invalid, there're multiple targets to heal, and they're not moving much. Yes, Druid: Dryad seems the best in that instance.

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3 hours ago, PropheticPlatypus said:

I agreed that perfect balance wasn't the goal. 

I think that meaningful questions when choosing optimal disciplines is good for build diversity. Dryad is available to all classes, yet giving specific Druid benefits makes it an obviously sub-par choice for other classes. 

It's too early to say that. I'm not a theorycrafter myself, but I've known many in several games I play. Just because it looks suboptimal for anything but druids does not make it so. I'm going to use a pretty simple example in League of Legends. In there there are items that give stats or abilities your champion really doesn't prioritize or need, stuff optimal for other classes, but because of a specific ability mechanic your character owns or a goal the item is especially viable for you.

In its old form sheen effectively gave magic damage and mana, but its ability allowed the next basic attack to do more damage after using an ability. An physical melee character, a pirate named gangplank, still built it because one of his abilities let him shoot from a pistol. The pistol shot immediately activated sheen and, as it could apply on hit effects, also applied the bonus damage, making it an incredibly powerful combination. 

Now, it upgrades into a very useful item for him and he can actually use the extra mana, but on the most basic level it illustrates my point.

Until we know what build goals are desirable and what full options are available we won't know if in fact, like it looks on paper to you, that said item benefits druids more because perhaps cleric has access to something that lets them draw much more benefit from it than druids (perhaps intentionally, which is why part of it maybe only affects druids?).

I see your point, but I think you're overly worried. Even if clerics get a similar open to all but benefits them the most ability, it would only help build diversity by making it another puzzle piece to tinker with for some yet undiscovered crazy build or forcing druids/clerics to weigh wasting disc for stronger healing over utility, defense, or even offense.

 

EDIT:

 

Also, looking at the actual disc, it's entirely possible you jumped the gun and that the disc text is just a typo. It grants the ability to drop healing orbs itself which were previously druid only so it stands to reason that orb bonus would affect its own orb generation ability. My guess it's just a typo.

If anything, unless crazily both the druid's natural orb ability and this one are on separate c/d, druid would be the suboptimal choice.

Edited by Cerulean Shaman
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1 hour ago, Cerulean Shaman said:

It's too early to say that. I'm not a theorycrafter myself, but I've known many in several games I play. Just because it looks suboptimal for anything but druids does not make it so. I'm going to use a pretty simple example in League of Legends. In there there are items that give stats or abilities your champion really doesn't prioritize or need, stuff optimal for other classes, but because of a specific ability mechanic your character owns or a goal the item is especially viable for you.

In its old form sheen effectively gave magic damage and mana, but its ability allowed the next basic attack to do more damage after using an ability. An physical melee character, a pirate named gangplank, still built it because one of his abilities let him shoot from a pistol. The pistol shot immediately activated sheen and, as it could apply on hit affects, also applied the bonus damage, making it an incredibly powerful combination. 

Now, it upgrades into a very useful item for him and he can actually use the extra mana, but on the most basic level it illustrates my point.

Until we know what build goals are desirable and what full options are available we won't know if in fact, like it looks on paper to you, that said item benefits druids more because perhaps cleric has access to something that lets them draw much more benefit from it than druids (perhaps intentionally, which is why part of it maybe only affects druids?).

I see your point, but I think you're overly worried. Even if clerics get a similar open to all but benefits them the most ability, it would only help build diversity by making it another puzzle piece to tinker with for some yet undiscovered crazy build or forcing druids/clerics to weigh wasting disc for stronger healing over utility, defense, or even offense.

 

EDIT:

 

Also, looking at the actual disc, it's entirely possible you jumped the gun and that the disc text is just a typo. It grants the ability to drop healing orbs itself which were previously druid only so it stands to reason that orb bonus would affect its own orb generation ability. My guess it's just a typo.

If anything, unless crazily both the druid's natural orb ability and this one are on separate c/d, druid would be the suboptimal choice.

Ahh, I played a LOT of LOL including Sheen Gangplank :) I get where you're coming from, but I think they're two different issues. Gangplank/sheen interaction was more of a subtle, possibly unintended powerful interaction.

Dryad Druids are going to have twice the number of Dryad-boosted healing orbs as a Dryad Cleric. Which class benefits more seems pretty obvious. Of course that's assuming the two abilities which grant healing orbs would be on separate CDs, which I would. If they were on the same CD, then you're right, it would be suboptimal for druid.

But my main point is that I don't think either case is good for build diversity. It seems like the main point of disciplines is that they provide viable diversification/specialization for all the classes available. Having a discipline that says "Open to all but intended for Druids" seems to go against that intent. But judging from the responses, I guess I'm alone in that mindset. 

Edited by PropheticPlatypus

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1 hour ago, PropheticPlatypus said:

 

But my main point is that I don't think either case is good for build diversity. It seems like the main point of disciplines is that they provide viable diversification/specialization for all the classes available. Having a discipline that says "Open to all but intended for Druids" seems to go against that intent. But judging from the responses, I guess I'm alone in that mindset. 

My brother pretty much made the same point, but as I told him you can look back at pretty much any competitive game and see that it's difficult to predict player creativity. League of Legend itself has shifted greatly throughout the years with certain builds, items, and characters all shifting in terms of viability and power.

Card games have cards that outright might seem pretty useless, and many of them remain that way forever as filler cards, true, but most at one point or another become useful when a new mechanic is introduced, ect.

My overall point is that leaving the door open itself helps build diversity. Maybe you're right, maybe right now it's better on druids, but maybe (again, stupid simple example) clerics have an ability that greatly enhances their healing spells over the next 10 seconds (their super power?) and when coupled with the Dryad disc's it gives them yet another ability to combo with that (or maybe instead of raw numbers it makes a lot more orbs drop), which would make it equally useful (some might argue better) for them than druids. Either way leaving it on the table allows someone to look at it and decide whether or not it might be useful elsewhere while just restricting it to druid outright would prevent that open examination.

If something is broken, too weak or too strong, it'll get fixed, but I think leaving options open even if that given freedom doesn't make sense is itself supportive of build diversity. Especially if Crowfall has a healthy, evolving meta for different objectives.  

 

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I was going to make a post on this theme. The problem with class-based disciplines is that we will likely wind up with simpler FOTM builds. It'd be much more influential on diversity to add race-based disciplines, so you know a Stoneborn Knight has different possibilities than other race-knights (it also makes intuitive sense, IMO).

I have absolutely no problem with disciplines open to all classes, those are excellent for diversity, IMO.

Edited by mctan
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12 hours ago, PropheticPlatypus said:

With all due respect, I don't think you're getting my point. I 100% AGREE that if a druid wants to specialize in healing, then they should. 

My point is when comparing two healing support classes, Cleric & Druid for instance. Both want to specialize in healing. Dryad clearly gives more to Druid than Cleric, even though it is available to cleric. Thus, Naiad or Pixie are a superior choices for that cleric. I don't see how the decision to give Druids more benefit from Dryad helps build diversity. Why not make Pixie, Naiad and Dryad give increased support abilities in distinct ways, but make them all more or less equally appealing to both Druid and Cleric? 

Not necessarily, what if someone wanted to build an offensively oriented mace/board focus "paladiny" cleric build who just helped as an off healer but was more designed around helping absorb damage and deal more as well. Also I wouldn't worry too much yet as this is literally the first draft of disciplines we are seeing with no play testing analysis behind it yet. Disciplines will still get balanced and changed, and this was a constant cycle during Shadowbane... As different class/disc combinations were nerfed or buffed it led to not only the "flavor of the month" style players but it made spec groups that might not have been previously strong enough to focus on and run viable... At the end of the day some of those discs I'm sure will become class or race specific while the majority will remain open but balancing is never perfect especially with how many combinations they are talking about.

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OP is right. If you have a rune That says "I'm better on a druid than normal" then either its too good on a druid or not good enough on everything else. So either druids have less choices because there is one that is just better or you have less choices because one of the disciplines isn't that good on non druids.

 

Yeah someone is going to blah blah about not striving for perfect balance. Thats a cop-out. You need enough balance so that the correct choices aren't obvious. If the devs intentionally put their finger on the scales to make one discipline better for certain classes its even more likely that its the one that ends up being the trivial choice that beats the rest.

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