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  #1  
Old 12-30-2010, 03:44 AM
Nobear Nobear is offline
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Default 1.011- Casters' DPS gimped; suggestions

My 56 Wizard's DPS has gone from bad to worse with the patch. Yes, Ice Mages make great kiters, but my DPS relative to enemies' HP is more what I'd expect from level 100 now. I can attribute this to four changes in the patch 1.011 notes:

1) decreased cast time bonuses from magic modifiers from -0.02 to -0.015
2) resistance is doubled for critical hit calculations
3) resistances work better on dots now
4) doubled monster resistance enhancements

I can see justifications for all of these except for 4.

1) Maybe Shadow saw that cast time was seen as the "be all, end all" caster DPS stat, and wanted players to once again look at other stats as well.
2) This no doubt stemmed from threads complaining about how ineffective armor and resistances used to be for players, rather than to protect monsters more vs players' already weak spells.
3) I'm guessing this is an extension of the previous point, of wanting resistances to be more valuable for players.
4) This I don't understand. At level 56, both my Warrior and Rogue were critting for 5k-10k, where my (totally DPS-focused) Wizard's Arctic Shard was critting for maybe 300-500, now even less. I can understand the rationale for letting melee do more damage than ranged who can kite things, but the DPS difference was already so huge before that I don't understand separating it further.

I have an idea to give player casters a DPS boost (even to just put them where they used to be) without affecting enemies. For each subclass that increases Mana Regen based on Intellect or Spirit, make those stats increase spell damage/healing by the same proportions. I think a % based increase would be the easiest to balance, and have it add to skills like Cold Mastery, much like Strength complements Axe Mastery for a Warrior.
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Old 12-30-2010, 07:19 AM
Stardusts Stardusts is offline
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Yep this patch is a major nerf against mage with all the points Nobear listed above. Btw there is one more:
5) monster armor rating increased from 6.0 to 8.0 per level.
It is probably meant for armor ignore to be a little more useful but as Nobear said, melee class already does huge damage at end game (10k-ish) it doesnt really matter. Physical spells (Shatter, Bone Shatter) will do even less damage now that lv100 monsters have an additional 200 armor.
For 4) I just wanna clear it: Minor Resist buff is now 100% (as opposed to 30% before the patch) and I think Major Resist (300%) is replaced with Incredible Resist- 500% bonus .
I play around with mages after the patch, my ice mage has no problem clearing lv100 dungeons but its because hes decked with near perfect items and a good build (both dmg and cast time were gimped of course). Things are different for my lower lv wizard though, his spells only scratch stuff now. I have yet to test lighting spells but I don't expect it to turn out better.

Last edited by Stardusts : 12-30-2010 at 06:03 PM.
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Old 12-30-2010, 09:22 AM
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Shadow Shadow is offline
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I'll start off by saying I wasn't purposely trying to nerf mages with this patch, so if that is what happened balance wise other changes will come soon that readjusts it.

The cast time change was for the reason that you stated, to make it not quite so important.

#4 mostly just applies to champion, uniques, etc that have resistance enhancements.

I don't think your statement about the difference between warrior/rogue and mage criticals is true. Armor also gets doubled on critical hits, so their crit damage should drop also. For that matter so will the monsters.
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Old 12-30-2010, 10:49 AM
Bosanac Bosanac is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stardusts View Post
Yep this patch is a major nerf against mage with all the points Nobear listed above. Btw there is one more:
5) monster armor rating increased from 6.0 to 8.0 per level.
It is probably meant for armor ignore to be a little more useful but as Nobear said, melee class already does huge damage at end game (10k-ish) it doesnt really matter. Physical spells (Shatter, Bone Shatter) will do even less damage now that lv100 monsters have an additional 200 armor.
For 4) I just wanna clear it: Minor Resist buff is now 100% (as opposed to 30% before the patch) and I think Major Resist (300%) is replaced with Incredible Resist- 500% bonus . Clearly a change to kill mages .

I play around with mages after the patch, my ice mage has no problem clearing lv100 dungeons but its because hes decked with near perfect items and a good build (both dmg and cast time were gimped of course). Things are different for my lower lv wizard though, his spells only scratch stuff now. I have yet to test lighting spells but I don't expect it to turn out better.
Stardust.. i just started a thief/ice mage last night. I like them so far but im going through potions left and right and often times run out of money to buy additional potions to survive.

Can you tell me about your gear (perfection as you say). And also can you give me some advice about where to invest my stats? I have been putting about 75 % into intelligence and 25 % into vitality. I am using the thief class mainly for the "treasure hunter" skill as this is my first char and i want to find lot's of stuff.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks!
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Old 12-30-2010, 11:35 AM
Nobear Nobear is offline
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To Shadow: I know you weren't trying to nerf mages. I'm not mad, that's why I'm testing the beta patch this time and reporting any bugs or balance issues I see.

To Bosanac: How much Mana/Mana Regen are you getting per point of Int with that hybrid? And how much HP per point of Vitality? That will help me decide proportions. For my pure Wizard, I'm going 66% Int / 33% Vit. I only leveled Dex a bit first because I couldn't wait to use my -60% (now -53%) cast time staff, but you'll be able to wield appropriate level staves just by drinking a Dex potion.

As for gear: Mana Regen, and either -% cast time or crit. I'd really love Fryse's Blue Ring (+150% crit) if someone could trade me, I've got really good stuff to trade . I look for good, balanced Uniques, but I also look for gear with high Mana Regen on it, and I wear a combination that grants me about 50 Mana/sec (bottom of 2nd page of Character screen). For balanced gear I'll list my stat priority from highest to lowest: Mana Regen, Int, +Max Health/Vit, +Max Mana, Resists/Armor, Dex.

Early on, you'll want to save your balanced gear and wear just Mana Regen until you get about 50/sec, but what you should keep your eye out most for is -% cast time gloves or staves. Those are the only two slots with that stat, so look at all cloth gloves and staves, even greens into your high levels. The best +% crit gloves only give +75%, so I'd go cast time for gloves for sure, but crit is a viable alternative when it comes to staves. At 50/sec, you can spam almost forever, and it'll fill back up in no time. I vary rarely drink any more; usually just when I face enemies that specifically drain mana.

Last edited by Nobear : 12-30-2010 at 12:06 PM.
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Old 12-30-2010, 05:08 PM
Nobear Nobear is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow View Post
I don't think your statement about the difference between warrior/rogue and mage criticals is true. Armor also gets doubled on critical hits, so their crit damage should drop also. For that matter so will the monsters.
True, but consider the numbers. My 89 Warrior has 100% Crushing Blow chance, so always crits for about 13k with Perfect Strike. Say it was 8k at level 56. A 56 enemy pre-patch had 56 * 6 = 336 armor. Using the formula, that took off 336/36 - 336/18 = 9.3 - 18.7 damage.

Post-patch that same enemy has 56 * 8 = 448 armor. Doubling for a crit, that results in absorbing 2(448/36 - 448/18) = 24.9 - 49.8 damage. So the armor changes bring a former 8k melee crit down to an average of 8,000 - ((24.9 + 49.8) / 2 - (9.3 + 18.7) / 2) = 8,000 - (37.4 - 14) = 7976.7 damage, which is literally 99.7% as hard as the same melee attack pre-patch.

Don't get me wrong, I do appreciate the increased value of armor for a player, given that most enemies don't hit nearly as hard as players do, and therefore a lot of damage taken is now truly nullified at high armor levels.

Let me quote my own post to show the kind of damage nerf casters are taking by comparison (the following is pre-patch):

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nobear View Post
Example: my level 44 wizard's Rank 11 Arctic Shard does 45-135 (90 average) damage. With +60% from Cold Mastery, that becomes 144 average. I have no idea how much resistance different enemies have to different schools, but the numbers I see tend to be significantly lower than they'd be with 0 resistance. Suppose some frost enemy has 100% cold resistance, which at my level would take about 200 cold resist. That gives him 50-25 (37.5 average) points of absorption.

144 - 37.5 = 106.5 average non-crit damage
288 - 37.5 = 250.5 average crit damage
250.5 / 106.5 = 2.35: in this specific case, a crit does 2.35X normal damage
Note that as a Wizard, I feel forced to focus entirely on DPS just to stay ahead of the resistance curve and see some minimal damage actually go through, and I therefore sacrifice utility I'd like to have such as Blinding Flash and max rank Teleport. So a crit doing *only* 2.35X damage against that imaginary foe was a testament to being very narrowly DPS-focused. Depending on the specific build and the enemies, caster crits previously could do anywhere from 2X to literally infinite times normal damage (if a normal spell couldn't quite pierce through). That huge bonus: gone.

Again, I totally understand the rationale and think it's a big improvement for player resistances, I'm just pointing out why casters need a big boost just to get back to where they were in DPS. What do you think of my idea of Int and Spirit also increasing damage/healing, proportionately to how they affect a given class's mana regen? Just an idea, whatever way you accomplish the same thing I'm sure will work great.

Last edited by Nobear : 12-30-2010 at 05:25 PM.
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Old 12-30-2010, 06:11 PM
Stardusts Stardusts is offline
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Sorry Shadow I must have wake up on the wrong side of the bed today and after playing the new patch it didn't help lit up the mood. Edited my rage post a little . I still say this patch is unintentionally a mage nerf though, while the double resistance/armor feature helps my mages live through criticals (they usually don't) it also makes mobs harder to kill resulting in more deaths .
When playing Demon War I stumble upon a magic prohibited vortex (sp?).... by a temporal flux machine, there better be a no melee vortex to balance things out!

Bosanac: Nobear pretty much said everything you want to know. If you find yourself die often you should wear +vit/health/armors (those with +200% armor modifier) gears, if you think you can squash everything then wear +int/magic find gears. The best gears are the one that has 3 or more of these modifiers. If you just started then you should focus on 1 ice spells and maybe a lv1/2 Shatter to deal with those ice elementals (or drink a dex potion, equip a dagger and stab them, they aren't tough). Also at higher level (where you have extra points to spare) I recommend using lv1 Permafrost, its slow effect stacks with frozen effect and nothing should be able to chase you if hit by both. For stats I put about 3int and 2vit all the way and when you have 250 int and vit put the rest into dex. It's not gonna be easy so good luck

Last edited by Stardusts : 12-30-2010 at 06:56 PM.
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Old 12-31-2010, 09:50 AM
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Shadow Shadow is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nobear View Post
Again, I totally understand the rationale and think it's a big improvement for player resistances, I'm just pointing out why casters need a big boost just to get back to where they were in DPS. What do you think of my idea of Int and Spirit also increasing damage/healing, proportionately to how they affect a given class's mana regen? Just an idea, whatever way you accomplish the same thing I'm sure will work great.
I'm hesitant to add anything more to intelligence since it already gives you a critical hit boost.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stardusts View Post
When playing Demon War I stumble upon a magic prohibited vortex (sp?).... by a temporal flux machine, there better be a no melee vortex to balance things out!
Not that it is quite balanced or anything, but fog will impact melee characters more than casters (defense & attack debuff).
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