Test Update 09/10/2019 - Patch Notes and Discussions

Discussion in 'Test Update Notes and Bug Roundup' started by EQ Dev, Sep 9, 2019.

  1. Gherig Addicted since Aug 1st, 1998

    I have played this game now for more then 20 years and I have to say this is by far the single best Dev shutdown of an obvious Troll post I have read to date. Hats off to Dzarn ... you made my day!
    RPoo likes this.
  2. kizant Augur

    Just to add a little more info to this. I know most people don't care about Wizard things but you have to admit that WIzard things are all that really matter.

    Over the last 4 TBL raids I've had a total of 156 Arcane Fusion procs. So, that's average of about 40 per raid. With this change on test that should drop to about 12 per raid or about 3 per hour with how we raid anyway. To me, that is kind of a problem. What's the chance that'll proc during a burn that actually sees a real benefit from the increased crit rate? We're talking 12 procs over a 6000 second period for raids while you're only spending maybe 1/10 that amount of time with good ADPS.

    The funny thing is that my suggestion to fix this problem is already in the game. During sustained you'll see wizards cast more instant nukes, more vortex, and more spells like claw. While during a burn you're mostly going to see big nukes like ethereals. Tying the ability for Arcane Fusion to proc to the cast time of the spell seems to be the right thing to do if you want to increase burn DPS while not having a big impact on sustained.

    What I would do is consider changing the proc rate back to what it was but increase the limit on the minimum casting time. Set it to 3500 so Claw can no longer proc Arcane Fusion. That way we'll at least get 1 or 2 procs during a burn while twincasting ethereals but during a sustained lineup our proc rate will go down considerably.

    That said, if the change was to keep with the original spirit of the ability, in that it always does a lot of damage when it procs but it isn't something that you see often. Then great, that does make sense to me. And it is an improvement DPS wise overall and scales better assuming next expansion it is upgraded to 250k or 300k. And Wizard DPS is pretty random as it is so having to rely on luck is fine but you can only take that so far before something becomes so unreliable you can't depend on it in any way.

    Here's some stats on core spell casts as a percentage for this 4 raid times I counted as just some data to work with. With my suggestion you can see that a good 60% of spell casts would have no chance of procing Arcane Fusion.

    Combined (1073): Rustbottom, Grinder of Gears in 23875s

    Kizant - 100%
    --- Burning Beam - 5.79%
    --- Claw of Qunard - 24.46%
    --- Dissident Fire - 3.78%
    --- Ethereal Braid - 10.71%
    --- Ethereal Skyblaze - 3.72%
    --- Ethereal Skyfire - 20.53%
    --- Flashburn - 19.11%
    --- Frostbound Covenant - 2.34%
    --- Stormjolt Vortex - 9.56%
    Sancus and Renotaki like this.
  3. BrokenCue Journeyman

    A tiny bit better over a player base's opinion?!?!?! Your are joking right? Please tell me you are.. Stop being cheap and increase the resources on your servers.
  4. Jhenna_BB Proudly Prestigious Pointed Purveyor of Pincusions

    Dazarn is not Daybreak's ownership and is not a financial backer - nor does he do any of the companies' accounting. If it was his choice, as with any of the Devs, this would be a 64 bit game among other game improvements. You're shooting the messenger.
    Schadenfreude and Marquele like this.
  5. BrokenCue Journeyman

    Really? I didn't know that. Thanks for the update :eyeroll: The point is that, Dzarn could go back and say ya know what we really should do this, where we (the player base) can't. After all right on their site is this..

    They aren't leveling up here.
  6. Piznut Augur

    Are ya'll trying to drive people to WoW classic just like you did with the original GOD launch? I don't get it.
  7. Axel Lorekeeper

    Any reason to nerf this ability? If it's because of TLPs you can just delete the TLPs, no one really cares about them anyways. Or revert the TLP's ability back to how it was pre-ROS.
    Allayna likes this.
  8. Angahran Augur

    Why ?

    Shadowknight's at least have AA's that reduce the chance to use components.
    Embalmer's Efficiency (70% chance to not use components)
    Intrinsic Efficiency (70% chance to not use components)
    Not sure how or if these stack?

    Assuming Necromancers have at least as good as these.
    Yinla likes this.
  9. Piznut Augur

    Seriously though, as a melee class, Throne of Heroes is like my favorite ability ever now that we have reached GoD, and as soon as we get it, you guys take it away.

    I really don't know what DBG has out for Coirnav, but it sure seems like as soon as we get something, you guys crap on us and take it away. Not to mention, when we beg for fixes, you ignore us until the next TLPs come out, then you fix it for them. I know you tried to kill Coirnav with two TLPs, but man ya'll really try to make it obvious sometimes that you really don't care about us.
  10. Oakenblade Augur

    Wow it must be really cool to be a fly on the wall to be able to see all the goings on at DBG. Please, tell us more about what DBG employees do and don't discuss amongst themselves. I'm sure all these brave ForumQuesters would love to know.
    Jhenna_BB likes this.
  11. Dzarn Developer

    Re: The veteran AA changes for progression servers.
    After some internal discussion we've opted to postpone this change until Dragons of Norrath has unlocked on Coirnav.

    This is a very fair assessment of obvious problems that arise in a 20 year old system that has been handled by numerous people, each with differing philosophies, and how decisions made today often run counter to decisions made in the past.

    The team, and community, would both benefit from improved communication. Articulating our design goals more clearly may not win support or favor, but should at least improve understanding. Articulating reaction and sentiment in a civil manner, offering data and reasoning will illicit far superior responses than emotion.

    Again, a very fair point. In a lot of cases there are AA abilities I wish that I could remove wholesale but have to temper my expectations given how integrated these 'old bad decisions' have embedded themselves into the core gameplay loop.

    A specific example I can point to is the fact that every class except beastlord has access to fading memories. From a design perspective, it's counter to our goals that every class could instantly remove themselves from danger. I gained no fans when I took a hammer to the ability lines; reducing success rates and adding maximum levels to most classes, moving the needle closer to what the team considers 'balanced' without removing the line from everyone besides bards, rogues, and possibly monks.

    Looking back on that change I've come to dislike how I handled it and will very likely be retuning these lines in the future to return them to a 100% success rate offset by a longer reuse for many classes. My logic being, a button that doesn't work sometimes is worse gameplay than a button that works but less often.

    In addition to all that, I'll readily admit, I nor anyone I know is perfect. I work within the constraints of limited time and limited data to do the best work that I can to create a sustainable environment that will be able to function for many years to come. I consider it a duty to ensure Norrath, a place that I've loved since childhood, remains a world for this community for as long as possible. Were I more focused on making fans instead of seeking balance, I'd be less inclined to nerf anything, but that would be a fast track to unsustainability.

    Hypochondriatic is a reasonable, albeit interesting, assessment of my systems design. /s

    It's fair to have emotions, but it's more useful to have data. I suspect that many of your more specific frustrations have to do with necromancers being nerfed either by intentional power reduction in places the team considered it too high, or semi-intentionally such as bug-fixes in cases like the undead-AE target type not previously enforcing its undead bodytype restrictions on abilities like Dead Mesmerization. The sum effect of these reductions, in addition to the team's lack of time to finish the DoT revamp, in addition to a concerted effort of the sub-community to withhold data, has resulted in necromancers not performing as well as the team or the community would like them to right now.

    The most productive path forward, I suspect, will be through improved civil discussion. I will do my best with the amount of time on my schedule to consider constructive feedback for changes for any class that we feel is appropriate.

    To clarify, the origin of the idea was performance, but the team as a whole was happy to see a further reduction in riposte damage along with the associated balance impacts it entails. The classes that currently benefit most from riposte are not ones we consider to be suffering or under performing at this time.

    You have a fair point, more of my time has been dedicated to cleanup and fixing than new things. However, the primary goal of my consolidation efforts hasn't been attracting new customers. If I can be cited stating that the focus of the effort was done for these reasons then I admit a failure to articulate myself correctly. Whether a reduction in the total number of ability lines appeals to novices or not isn't the deciding factor. I would probably rank the major goals of consolidation as follows:
    Maintainability: Currently, without further reducing performance, the highest number of unique AA lines a class can have is 300. Had I made no effort to consolidate, more than a few classes would be pushing up against this cap, meaning we'd have to reduce performance to support the mess the system had devolved into. I feel like the most straightforward example of this was the previous implementation of 'Focus of Arcanum' or 'Gift of Mana' which was a separate ability line per level-range.

    Additionally, when I inevitably hand off responsibility of the AA system to another designer, who may not have 20 years experience with EverQuest, I would like to give them something documented that they can have the capacity to work on. Requiring future developers to suffer through the mess of the last 20 years will just continue a spiral of slow implementation and stasis.

    Balance: For Norrath to remain an interesting world that people want to explore, player power simply can't extend in all directions indefinitely. This can quickly tangent into a philosophical discussion about game design, human happiness, retention efforts, and several other topics; but I will state, it is my belief that it is worse for a game to become boring due to hyperinflation than it is for people to have to adapt to balance changes, even if those changes will result in frustration at times.

    As for what people want, there's a very real disconnect between any person's ability to articulate what they believe they want and what it is they genuinely want. Many people much less ignorant than myself can elaborate on this topic. The point of this statement isn't at all to suggest anyone wants their class to be nerfed or their hotkeys changed, but rather, if asked 'what do you want for your class' the most common answer will be a variation on 'more'. Following that answer without interpretation results in situations that we have now, where BER have ~10 different activated AA abilities that fall into the category of 'increase your DPS' which is poor from a maintenance perspective, clunky and burdensome from a gameplay perspective, and is non-optimal for understanding.

    Your frustrations are valid and I hope to dedicate more time to improving the consolidated ability lines. It is one of my goals that we reduce the number of new buttons in the game but empower the buttons you have to be more meaningful.

    Despite being a thinly veiled, though entertainingly sarcastic, reiteration of the fact that every class hates every other class you've offered a fair assessment of the cognitive dissonance the team suffers when working on something 20 years old.

    In this particular case, 'teleport forward' AA abilities much like 'fading memories' AA abilities have become something almost all classes (~14/16 if you include outforce-forward cases) have been given.
    Ssdar, Thunderkiks, Dahaman and 16 others like this.
  12. Wulfhere Augur

    I'm against it because it yet again removes player agency from the game. The game is fun when there are tactical things to do during combat, e.g. the dance of pressing buttons at the right time and for the right reason.

    Removing tactics (fun) from the game based on database statistics is not my idea of good game design.
    Allayna likes this.
  13. Ngreth Thergn Developer

    And for me, it is the original trade-skill mastery AA's.
    #1, even if they "must" be in the game, they gave a HUGE amount of it in the very beginning, leaving very little (really no) growth available in the future, taking all of the "Design Space"
    #2, it simply muddies up the ability to make trade-skills difficult in an equal or logical fashion.
    Rasper Helpdesk likes this.
  14. yepmetoo Abazzagorath

    I won't speak for others on this, but I feel this would make people very happy. Right now, its an "oh &$^%" ability that fails sometimes and then you just die. As a paladin, I rarely ever use it, still on my front page of hot buttons, but thinking about it, I probably have cast it 10 times in the last year (mostly to drop some add aggro during a raid burn for a specific reason).

    I'd rather have a 10-15 minute reuse and it work than what it does now. Permanent invis was the best part of the old version of Balefire burst, but I won't hold my breath on ever getting that back.

    PLEASE STICKY THIS SOMEWHERE! This is something that is extremely important to know. Would you be open to classes giving you suggestions on ways to combine/eliminate things from our class lines to open us up for further development, whether now or in the future?

    The balance issue is something that should be in the back of everyone's head, sure. But take the riposte change.

    Compare paladin to warrior to sk reliance on riposte for dps, and I really don't think its fair, as the lowest dps class takes the biggest hit on aggregate dps, when the riposte total dps is relatively the same in the same context.

    But I'm not worried about swarming experience, something that goes in and out of fashion through each expansion/level cycle.

    One of the best things - to me, but I bet to others - about this game is the large amount of content for someone that can't complete everything in era due to lack of time, even for people that put in a lot of time. Short summation: there is always something to do.

    Take finishing LDoNs for the stone (373 or whatever missions), for hero's journey. I still have maybe 70 missions to go or whatever, I do them occasionally for something to do.

    This riposte change means that I will do basically 0 dps to these mobs that used to fall over, and will have to manually target every single one and kill them one at a time, because they almost always miss.

    That's just an example. I don't like the idea of having to take 10x longer doing old things that I'm mainly doing now out of completionist feelings, because I've geared up. I would be better off taking a level 90 alt and doing the missions with them, with my 110 (soon to be 115) main parked somewhere, because the alt will probably kill it faster with the ripostes it will still do while taking min damage, since it doesn't have 2300 hdex.

    Its just...off.

    If it makes a difference in server performance, and it nerfs swarming, I know arguing against it is spitting in the dark. I'm just hoping there is something that could be done to stop the unintended (or uncared about) consequences.

    Nerfing spell buff duration on discs may have been aimed towards rangers, but it sure hit us hard on dps, that wasn't fun, and neither will this be.
    Xeladom likes this.
  15. Darchon_Xegony Augur

    If AA slots are a concern, most of the general tab could honestly be refunded and the gains could be tied to leveling up.

    Armor of Wisdom - Fairly trivial amounts of Mitigation AC increase, tie it to levels starting at 85 (SoD)

    Battle Ready - Additional Bandolier slots, again tie them to levels starting at 55 (DoN)

    Discordant Defiance - Resist Cap increased, again tie them to levels starting at 66 (OoW)

    Energetic Attunement - Regeneration Cap increased, again tie them to levels starting at 71 (TSS)

    First Aid - Bandage Improvements, no one has used bandages since 2001 so may as well tie this to levels starting at 51 (Luclin)

    General Sturdiness - Raw HP addition, this can go either way but may as well just give flat HP gains for each levels starting at 76 (SoF)

    Innate Eminence - Base Stat addition, this is basically useless in game. People have maxed stats on basically everything since Defiant armor and raid armor from PoP onward. There’s no reason you shouldn’t just innately gain these stats as you level starting at 51 (Luclin)

    Innate Regeneration - Base HP Regen addition, this is basically useless as well. 155 HP Regen when mobs hit for over 40,000+ in a single hit, there’s really no reason this can’t be innately given to players starting at 51 (Luclin)

    Innate Runspeed - Base Runspeed, this is a critical ability for most players, their minds would be blown if they played a character without it after only logging into characters with it after so long. I think this should be gained with levels starting at 51 (Luclin)

    Innate See Invis - Due to not losing items on death and every Head item from low level Defiant to anything current has Faerune, we naturally get this with gear anyways may as well grant the ability innately at level 70 (DoDH)

    Innate Spell Resistance - Base Resist addition, See Innate eminence comments. I suppose the back half of this AA that grants corruption is an exception since you don’t just blindly Max corruption Resist due to itemization. So I could see value in hanging onto it as an AA. I could also see just starting to grant it innately at level 51 (Luclin)

    Mystical Attuning - Access to additions buff slots, this is already something we innately get via leveling, at 71 and 73 I think? We gain additional buff slots. May as well just remove this AA line and make the acquisition of buff slots become an innate part of leveling starting at 51 (OoW)

    Natural Durability - Percentage increase to HP, like General Sturdiness this AA actually adds power so I can see why you may want to keep it but it’s just a slight change in how your HP is calculated. I think that this calculation already factors in level in assessing stamin effects etc. You could just remove these and change the HP calculation to innately grant these percentage increases as you level starting at level 55 (Luclin)

    Planar Power - Stat Cap Increase, this is another one that we already get. Going from 60-65 you went from a 255 Cap to a 280 Cap without any AAs spent. You may as well remove these and roll this one into leveling starting at level 61 (PoP).

    That’s 14 General AA lines that I think really can just have their benefits tied to leveling and get removed and you won’t hear much of a peep out of anyone. They’re all AAs that you sort of just buy at the end of your AA progress or they’re AAs that are valuable (spell slots and HP increases) that are already innately happening as we level as well.

    Alternate Advancements should really be reserved for unique abilities, not things that are inconsequential or things we are already getting via leveling up.
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  16. Wulfhere Augur

    Float those discussion with the player community proactively? We are going to react regardless and I think DBG has a better chance of positive reactions if we the customers have a voice up front.
    Beastlords do have Playing Possum though (feign death). I agree that the ability to escape combat in some fashion is very powerful and even class defining. The classes that could escape combat by various means in classic were very popluar (necro, SK, monk, etc) in part for that reason. I too was amazed to receive a fade ability as a paladin (a major distinction between the two knights imho).
    I think your changes to it, e.g. for paladin being more cleric atone style, are just fine (albeit less powerful). Well except for bards who lost in the exchange.

    I think there are plenty of caveats wrt deterministic vs probabilistic game play design. I press a button that does autoattack but it doesn't have 100% accuracy or damage (fun). I press a button that does gate and it collapses sometimes (annoying!). Your skill as a designer is to choose the right amount of each flavor for the ability in question.
    I share you sentiment as do countless many players. Two things you have posted in this thread I feel are at the fundamental core of Norrath as a fun place to play.

    1. Player agency and tactics in game. Buttons to press that do things that are fun. In this area you are removing buttons and replacing them with RNG effects that are just background noise. E.g. Shield of Brilliance in this thread and other things like /autoskill .

    2. Combat time intervals long enough to allow the player to have fun doing (1). Here we have seen EQ in a long decline. Remember when NPCs had 30 delay melee and 3-6s casting time on spells? That has declined to 10 delay melee and 0-1s casting time. What has this done? Well for starters it has DBG posting here about server load and the need to reduce melee spam and impact-fully riposte chances. It's also removed tactics and fun from the game. Now EQ has become all unstoppable battle spam that enables AFK botting while the RNG simulation decides who wins the encounter. I believe a major appeal of TLP servers (and playing low level tunes in general) is that they revert this trend.

    I used to have fun timing by bashes to interrupt an NPC (or player) casting mez or complete heal or gate. Now it's on /autoskill and removed from gameplay. Even if it wasn't (or I opted out), the modern NPC has a zero cast time on their mez spell so I cannot react tactically with a bash or stun anyways. So why not put it on /autoskill and forget about it? Why not then add side effects to my bash or kick or flying kick? Is that really fun? (no)

    Finally, I'm getting old and slow (i.e. that 1% raiders thread) and faster twitch and RNG effects that pad my parse are not the direction I want the game to go. I want to enjoying actually playing the game interactively.

    TL;DR and thanks
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  17. strongbus Augur

    going off of Darc.

    even some archtype aa are no good for some classes.

    take necro and mass group buff. We got 1 spell/aa it works with dead men flotting. What is the sense of us having it if we got no real use for it.
  18. Zanarnar Augur

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  19. Wulfhere Augur

    Right! As a paladin, I always knew going into a fight that I had to win or die, even holding the line so others could escape to zone line. There was no escape for me and that was part of the archetype, part of the fun. I still play my main character that way and have learned the habits and skills to navigate a dungeon without brute force fading. I use Balefire a few times a month more as a quality of life thing, and yes bypassing some unwanted content along my route, then as a combat tactic.
  20. Lifeshriek Augur

    Yeah, fade for beastlords would be appreciated. Also I doubt you have overlooked it in your consideration Dzarn, but a return to 100% pet fade on Summon Companion AA would also be appreciated. Thank you. :)
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