Thoughts on current tanking(and game play) in eq

Discussion in 'Tanks' started by sojero, Apr 28, 2014.

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  1. sojero One hit wonder

    When I started as a tank in eq we could survive a couple of rounds of combat before dying. healers did not have the tools that they have now and it was a game of attrition. The reason you had a tank class then was they mitigated better and a healer could keep up with the incoming dps.
    Move forward in time and now it seems I am playing twitchquest. If the tank or the healer sneezes at the wrong moment, wipe. If i get an unlucky round, wipe.

    Now we have tools that can be used upfront such as ward of cert that will give about 2 seconds of help but only lasts for 1 min so you have to know you need it. sk/pal have reprove that can help if they can foreshadow a bad round or if a round didn't kill them and they can help the healer catch up. sk and pal have buffs that can help a bit, and war has nttb. The sk/pal buff is a random proc off incoming hit so cannot be relied upon and war nttb is not sustainable.

    I am wondering what others peoples thoughts are. I personally would love to see the game over the next expansion or 2 go back to a more controlled pace that allows tanks to use their abilities in the ways that were designed and not get rolled because of factors way outside player control.

    player control takes into account discs and spells from both the tank, cleric, and support.

    The other reason I would love to go back to the older style is because groups used to be more social then. Now if you have a fast paced group, or even moderate paced group no one is really talking or socializing because of the amount of reaction and preparation that players have to accommodate.

    How do other tanks see this?
    Zyrek, Elricvonclief, Dre. and 3 others like this.
  2. Daegun Augur

    I agree completely. In the glory days of EQ (velious was the pinnacle imo) there were at best a very few mobs in the game that could 1 round tanks. These were all in open zones and were raid encounters. Avatar of war comes to mind but there were other more challenging albeit slightly less melee intensive encounters out there. Even areas like the kael arena - tanks didn't die in 5-10 seconds - they'd die much slower and it was more of whether or not heals per second could keep up with dps per second. Your limiting factor in both groups and raids was generally your healer's mana regen rate - that was the bottleneck assuming that your tank was beefy enough to stand up to the challenge. Plate tanks were always the point man for the reason you mentioned above - their mitigation allowed clerics to sustain and balance those heals per second and their hit point pool advantages furthermore made them the safest targets to heal.

    Unfortunately those slower days are long gone, but that's not to say we can't move towards it. In the threads that unfortunately cannot be named thanks to being recently locked, we see a slower and more relaxed game for NPCs that mitigate exceptionally well but have lower avoidance. The net result is comparable overall incomming dps, but exceedingly smooth and predictable incoming damage. The 'oh crap' moments byinlarge nonexistant in favor of steady predictable incomming damage. There aren't massive swings followed by catch up periods or danger zones - just steady predictable damage.

    No time to bleed was perfect in that regard for warriors in it's sustainable version. On a round where all 4 lands connected, you were looking at 12-13k less damage on both the high end and the low end. Warriors went from ping ponging all over the place without any ability to top themselves off or ease the burden on their healers to suddenly becoming ... more predictable. Require less healing ... and generally we thrived. Unfortunately, now that it's only up 3/5 minutes, it has fallen into our bucket of crap we have to save for when we needed it - otherwise you could easily get caught with your pants down in those 2 down minutes.

    The only way for us to get away from the "twitchquest" is to decrease the probability (in one way or another) of those "oh crap" moments. You could tweak the mobs themselves ... you could raise mitigation levels on tanks ... you could give tanks sustainable abilities/discs to keep it smooth ...
  3. sojero One hit wonder

    Only way I can think of is to either extremely inflate HP pools to be able to last for 3-5 seconds before death and give priest classes/tanks buffs to get their HP pools to that during raids or pump the stagnant ac up.

    I would like a solution that takes all classes into account. Having melee or casters die to one round of ramp sucks for everyone and they have no way to pre manage that. also the chance of tank dying in group because of an AE because the group heal takes to long to cast.
  4. Daegun Augur

    Just as easy as inflating hit point pools is to simply decrease how much mobs hit for and how much damage their ae's do.

    The problem isn't necessarily with the sum total of damage that comes in, it's the unpredictable and streaky nature of it. Higher hit point pools in my opinion are a bandaid fix, but to be truthful having just a bandaid is better than having no bandaid at all ;)
  5. sojero One hit wonder

    The problem with reducing the hit dmg is that clerics can already heal for X amount, so if you bring part of the equation down then it stands the chance of trivializing most encounters, and that's not what we want. I agree it would be a band aidthat wouldn't take full effect for 1-3 expansions
  6. Daegun Augur

    Yep I know, which is why in my first reply I already said those days are long gone. The game has adapted beyond simply going back to the old way - clerics don't run out of mana these days. Long slow efficient heals are no longer used or generally recommended by elite clerics - and our 'long' ones these days are nothing like the long ones of old. The game got spikey. The game got quick. All healers adapted to this and have the toolset to deal with quick damage balanced by quick reactive (or proactive quick) healing.

    Raising hit point pools would indeed help, but so too would leveling out the spikiness of those spikes.

    NTTB in it's original incarnation was perfect for the warrior class in this regards. My knights have the ability to deal with or assist with those spikes very well with self healing, but that self healing doesn't really scale up well with content (ie raid target big hitter) - but they still tend to fair well comparatively.
  7. sojero One hit wonder

    one thing I was thinking about is how much over healing we do now days, how much is wasted. then bam one bad max round and dead. if heals were stagnated a bit, and hp pools brought up, then damage distributed among the DI better (through higher AC) this would slowly bring the game back into alignment while allowing mob dmg to continue to go up and still provide a challenge. Maybe focus on giving clerics/dru/shm some good toys one expansion to allow their heals lower than normal upgrades.
    Dre. likes this.
  8. Tamber Journeyman

    Was there ever an explanation as to why NTTB was nerfed? It had a hit counter so not really understanding the underlying rationale for its need to be 3 min out of 5.
  9. sojero One hit wonder

    it was stated that is was never meant to be constantly on, their "sustainable" was only that it didn't eat a ton of endo.

    ps please lets not create a nttb has been nerfed thread :)
  10. Makavien Augur

    No explanation but one could guess it made the pvp server completely out of balance warriors could prolly own there for a bit or it could be old raids which is silly.
  11. Dre. Altoholic

    From around the PoP era and forward, the power of healing increased at such a rate that in order for enemies to be dangerous, EQ combat shifted from a model of "efficiency" to a model of "survival".

    Eventually we have reached the current state, where the power and effectiveness of healing are trumped by the frequency of heals received. Taking simple latency, spell cast times, standard gaming distractions and human reaction into account, tanks are very likely to die before a healer has a chance to react to a damage spike. Damage is so fast and extreme that it is in the tank's best interest to be at maximum health every round, but this is not achievable with the current speed of combat and spell casting.

    A few things can be changed:

    1. Reduce the frequency of melee hits. Reduce natural attack speeds, make fewer mobs that mitigate slow, reduce or eliminate slow mitigation on most 'trash' mobs.
    2. Make spell damage faster and smaller. All too often a damage spike is followed by a large spell hit, making tank death unavoidable.
    3. Add casting times to NPC spells. This allows a brief respite from melee damage so the tank can be topped off before a spell hit lands
    4. Tune NPC damage to appropriate archetypes. 'Casting' NPC's should deal most of their damage with spells and have weak melee hits.
    5. Introduce more reactive combat mechanics, e.g. NPC debuffs that must be cured or buffs that must be dispelled.
    6. Revisit the vision of NPC difficulty per tier, and better control the beta environment to ensure content is appropriate for the intended audience.

    1. As stated previously, change the model for upgrades to healing spells. Stagnate heal/sec for direct heals where possible.
    2. Also stated previously, significantly inflate tank HP with AA's.
    3. Across-the-board improvement of proactive defensive abilities. More/bigger vies, more/bigger spell runes, more layers of debuffs, sustainability of defensive disciplines, etc.
    4. Adjust ATK/AC values such that tanks are re-asserted as the dominant defensive forces of mitigation. Real player tanks should be very hard to kill.
    5. Increase 'shielding' caps for all players via AA. E.G. 50% for casters, 65% for melee, 80% for Knights, 95% for Warriors
    Xeladom and sojero like this.
  12. sojero One hit wonder

    to address a couple things dre:

    I wouldn't touch Shielding as it only effects DB, and that over the last few expansions has been degraded so that the vast majority of dmg comes from the DI portion. (also the reason warriors see such good #'s during their FS)

    If we go to bigger I would go to runes as we don't want % based because those are hard to scale, but rune that have a set amount are easy to increase as needed.

    I agree that I would love to see casters do less melee and do more spell dmg. I also would love for pallies , enchanter, clerics to be able to interupt more with their stuns, or even a well done bash from others.

    I believe making the damage rounds farther apart would be counter productive to the slow being increased. I think if clerics got their cast times reduced a little bit, or reworked that would be what is needed, but that is only if they dont want to catch players up by ac/hp. If they were to increase the hp/ac and stagnate the heals and mob dps for an expansion it would go a long way.

    I also wouldn't mind seeing tank hp be increase via other classes. Give priest classes bigger "growth" spells. give one to each that could stack. That way in the group game you might have one, at best 2, and in the raid you could have them all. Make mercs not cast them, like bastion.
  13. Dre. Altoholic

    Should we be in a situation where our AC is sufficient to take mostly low DI hits, more damage mitigated helps us from rapid death by attrition, very common for group geared tanks.
    It just makes slow rounds slower and gives healers more time to react to damage spikes, hits on non-tanks or other priestly things. It also gives non-tanks a better chance to react rather than being 'effectively rounded' i.e. dead before they can react.
    Only if the spells were proportionately reduced in healing potency, otherwise HPS would increase and the hole gets dug deeper. Could give a boost to efficiency.
  14. sojero One hit wonder

    true but messing with more % is bad for the game I think. that is one of the reasons we are where we are now. Also the DI spread on some of the parses done show that the DB is 3k or less, so it is not significant compared to the DI.

    I didnt think about the help it would give to the non tanks, but on the other hand if their hp pools were raised to the point that they could take a full round of max hits (unlike now) they would have the time needed to fade. on the same note even with the hp pool to take a max round, a healer would not be able keep them up as a "tank" because they would be taking mass damage per round and with the newer heal line they wouldnt be able to max heal them every round.

    Not necessarily, if they are healing for an avg of 35k hps now and they got their cast times cut in half, but the tanks HP doubled, their HPS would still be at the same proportions as to the tanks HP. so a nice medium would be to lower the heal amount of the new line of faster cast heals by 1/3 while raising the hp of the tanks next expansion by 50% more
  15. Damoncord Augur

    Honestly IMO I think they should start unstagnating the AC values, and ensure that at least tanks can soak one max DI round for their teir of gear.

    I have no issue with pets being able to force down DI values but I feel that if I'm wearing the top gear in the game I should be able to force most of the DI rolls down as well.
    sojero likes this.
  16. Nurfz Journeyman

    I think all classes need to take less damage. That being said, I think tanks taking significantly less damage than all other classes seems fitting as they give up a lot to be so durable.

    To make damage more bearable for most classes you can rework the AC formula to make damage more predictable depending on how much AC the character has relative to the current level of content. In other words, don't make it about rolls but a flat % mitigation off all attacks. For example, if a Wizard is hit by a mob it may take 1000 damage but a tank may take 600 damage (and much less often be hit).

    To make damage even more predictable for tanks, I think they add an innate shield block skill (similar to dodge, parry, or riposte) that mitigates a flat % of damage. This way the person must be a tank with a shield equipped which means it works primarily when fulfilling their main role.

    I also believe that player tanks need a much higher contribution from stamina.
  17. Nurfz Journeyman

    I agree it may be "invasive" but legacy code is refactored or replaced all day long based on priority. I cannot think of anything more important right now than finding a scaling solution to damage output from mobs. Avoiding RNG is almost always the best solution.

    More specifically, this system needs to find a way to distinguish tanks. Tanks cannot outheal a healer or out damage a damage dealer of equal skill and gear level on a consistant basis (barring ridiculous cooldowns). As a matter of fact, the gaps between the areas of expertise between those roles are actually quite large.

    So, the only way to extinguish a tank is to allow them to be tougher than all the other classes. The easiest way to do this is through shields. Shields are a tool that all tanks use when tanking and relying heavily on one is fine. If a tank throws on a two hander, they should have a huge disadvantage just like a damage dealer throwing on a shield shouldn't see a huge benefit.
  18. Ravengloome Augur

    umm no damage dealers using a shield should provide them benefit, it is a shield.
  19. Nurfz Journeyman

    I said huge because I was painting a contrast. How is that not obvious?
  20. Damoncord Augur

    I belive he was meaning they should see no DPS boost.
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