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Focused Feedback: Dark Melee Update (Build 2)


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22 hours ago, Doc_Scorpion said:

Tested in KR, and it really makes low level attack chains flow more smoothly.

My previous testing of the new DM had been on a Brute, so I took a scrapper out just for completeness sake...  Discovered three things.  First, (compared to a Fury enhanced brute) the new DM/Shadow Maul is a bit rough but workable.  Second, how much I miss taunt auras (since I've been playing a lot of brutes and tanks lately).  Third, the DM/Shield brute I just started on Live is just gonna twiddle his thumbs in the SG base until this change goes Live.

I agree with the folks saying that balancing a lvl 18 power against Incarnates is...  not a good idea.  Incarnate powers are supposed to be stupidly OP in normal content as Incarnate characters are virtually gods, while more "normal" superheroes are merely "god-like".  I suspect that balancing Dark Equilibrium against Incarnate abilities is going to result in characters that are seriously OP (compared to their teammates) whenever Incarnates are not around.

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Balancing around incarnates is one of those things that makes sense as an idea until you think about it, the actual game and how it's played, in addition to the whole idea behind the incarnate system.

 

Ageless Destiny, Assault Hybrid and a few Alpha slots would have the biggest direct impact on the abilities themselves here,  neither of which would cause Dark Consumption to break anything that isn't already demonstrably more broken somewhere else, in a much stronger set no less.

 

Edited by ScarySai
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Admittedly I skimmed a lot of the thread since I hadn't caught up from page 1, but I thought I'd throw out a different tweak:

  • Add in the bonus scale 0.9275¬†damage, meaning that within the small 3' radius you're back to scale 3.18 damage.
  • The close range damage would¬†not¬†scale with endurance.
  • The regular damage (scale¬†2.2525) would scale with endurance to a minimum of scale 0.9 (current damage scale), meaning that at worst you will do the current 0.9 scale damage outside of the "close range damage"¬†area, and do scale 1.8275 damage to mobs within 3' - that's a little more than Gloom does, in a faster animation (and a bit less than the Brute and Tanker versions of Spin, which have¬†a higher recharge and damage scalar than the Scrapper version).
  • All of the damage would be enhanceable/buffable.
  • The close range damage would be dealt immediately, while the remainder would be dealt as DoT over 5 seconds (15 seems like it will rarely ever actually do the full damage, if it's going to last that long then bump the AoE size to 15' and turn it into a PBAoE Rain of Fire without the pet).
  • If you decide to allow the critical, the close range damage would be the only portion to critical (basically turning it into just over scale 4 in a 3' radius, which¬†is¬†crashless nuke scale). My problem with the critical before wasn't that it was present, it was¬†that it wasn't partial while many other powers have¬†reduced criticals or some other effect¬†in place of a full damage critical to prevent the very high scale that it was reaching before.

Obviously you have your own plan already, I just wanted to throw this out as a suggestion for a middle road that doesn't go overboard but doesn't feel completely anemic, and uses the DoT you mentioned to prevent insta-killing, but on a much lower time frame (hopefully not ticking quickly enough to cause mob scatter for Scrappers).

 

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I personally would prefer it to scale fully with damage, as a DoT, however, basing it on current Endurance, I haven't had time to test this (as it takes me forever to download even a gig, let alone beta, as i'm still downloading it on my garbage internet), does the current endurance thing work like this?
ToHit Check - > Grants Endurance - > Checks Current End - > Damage Dealt.

It having a decent radius, 15ft - 20ft radius, some base up-front damage, fully scalable by enhancements and +DMG buffs + DoT based on current endurance, would be my take on it I think. Having it critically strike would be preferable, to put it in line with other existing AoEs outside of those done via psuedopets.

Having Touch of Fear turned into an AoE DoT / Fear would I think alleviate some of the AoE issues, perhaps using Dark Assault's Engulfing Darkness with a Radius 10 instead of 15, and maybe named Engulfing Terror, which would also give the Stalker AT an AoE that it's sorely lacking from Dark Melee. It'd be a back loaded AoE, but it'd be something other than just Shadow Maul.

Edited by @T3h Ish
Grammar, and some other suggestions and ideas.
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3 hours ago, Captain Powerhouse said:

Saying this now so it’s not a shock when it testing, the DoT will be over a long period of time, likely 15 seconds. It will likely be a fast ticker, though.

Okay, fast-ticking DoT is nice. But... fifteen seconds is way too long for a power like this. I think the only other 15-second DoT powers are the rain-type powers and those are all location-based patches with higher radius and target cap and since they're location-based patches they can technically hit an infinite number of targets over their duration. Five seconds with a slower tick rate and more of the damage being frontloaded would make more sense, I think. If the original intention was to turn Dark Equilibrium into a sort of mini-nuke, these changes are getting further and further away from that.

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18 minutes ago, macskull said:

Okay, fast-ticking DoT is nice. But... fifteen seconds is way too long for a power like this. I think the only other 15-second DoT powers are the rain-type powers and those are all location-based patches with higher radius and target cap and since they're location-based patches they can technically hit an infinite number of targets over their duration. 

Combustion is also a long duration DoT of about 13 sec and is a PBAoE.

 

Rain powers have to do a ToHit check for every hit throughout the duration.

 

Anyway, like I said before, if you want lots of upfront damage from the power, procs exist for that.

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4 minutes ago, Leogunner said:

Combustion is also a long duration DoT of about 13 sec and is a PBAoE.

 

Rain powers have to do a ToHit check for every hit throughout the duration.

 

Anyway, like I said before, if you want lots of upfront damage from the power, procs exist for that.

Uh, Combustion is around 7 seconds, with a radius of 15. A far cry from 15 second DoT and 8 radius.

 

The 13 seconds is how long the taunt is for Tankers.

Edited by Armaros
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12 minutes ago, Leogunner said:

Combustion is also a long duration DoT of about 13 sec and is a PBAoE.

 

Rain powers have to do a ToHit check for every hit throughout the duration.

 

Anyway, like I said before, if you want lots of upfront damage from the power, procs exist for that.

  1. Combustion's DoT is 7.1 seconds but it's also skipped by most Tankers and Blasters who have the opportunity to take it because it's got one of the longest animations of any power in the game and its DPA is pretty bad. (Nevermind that it has almost twice the radius as Dark Equilibrium.)
  2. Rain powers tick fast enough and (if slotted well) will be rolling close to 95% on each tick so that's pretty much irrelevant. Rain powers also have the unique ability to basically bypass the target cap - if one target dies another will start taking damage instead.
  3. The solution to "this power is advertised as high-damage but because of the realities of gameplay will rarely ever see most of that damage on a target" shouldn't be "use IOs."
Edited by macskull
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Honestly, the original way it dealt damage with criticals, bonus damage and such would be just fine, I don't know why we're reinventing the wheel, here.

 

It did too much, so scale it back. Why totally reimagine how it works with every revision?

Edited by ScarySai
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11 minutes ago, ScarySai said:

Honestly, the original way it dealt damage with criticals, bonus damage and such would be just fine, I don't know why we're reinventing the wheel, here.

 

It did too much, so scale it back. Why totally reimagine how it works with every revision?

I can appreciate this. I think Captain was concerned with the safety provided by wiping out all the minions in a single burst though, and scaling it back far enough so it didn't wipe out minions would be met with a lot of resistance too. The DoT is a way to keep the damage high but remove the safety gained by just killing things outright. 

Edited by KelvinKole
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13 minutes ago, ScarySai said:

Honestly, the original way it dealt damage with criticals, bonus damage and such would be just fine, I don't know why we're reinventing the wheel, here.

 

It did too much, so scale it back. Why totally reimagine how it works with every revision?

Agreeeed. 

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9 minutes ago, KelvinKole said:

I can appreciate this. I think Captain was concerned with the safety provided by wiping out all the minions in a single burst though, and scaling it back far enough so it didn't wipe out minions would be met with a lot of resistance too. The DoT is a way to keep the damage high but remove the safety gained by just killing things outright. 

The problem with that is that wiping out +4 minions is a trivial task. A critical shockwave can do that by itself with some damage buffs.

 

Remember: Dark melee is buffing the everloving crap out of it's own damage, if it's unable to wipe out minions with 200% damage buffs while being balanced like a mini-nuke, it's a garbage ability, full stop.

 

I can agree with removing crits, but this thing being able to obliterate people with fully saturated damage buffs isn't a big deal, because again - dark melee is buffing itself to absurd levels. 

 

Have any other scrapper match the buff of a soul drain buffed dark melee scrapper and they'll be wiping out minions without effort, it'll just accidentally happen as they're hitting the boss. The concern about it being too much doesn't hold up.

Edited by ScarySai
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On 2/29/2020 at 8:23 AM, ScarySai said:

Exactly.

 

My problem with your soul drain suggestion is that they would have to modify something else with the ability to make up for it, and I don't want soul drain to end up like Dark Consumption did, here. A finger on the monkey's paw will curl.

 

Also, just tested again with reds+hybrid active to test how hard DE hits at the damage cap, it was an average of about 20 more than the screenshots I posted earlier.

 

So far - Shadow maul = B+

 

Dark Equilibrium: Was an A, now is more of a D-.

I honestly thought someone had completely mis-typed the description.

 

Because the only way it makes sense is if it goes more damage when just used as an attack and less damage when grabbing End.  Having it do more damage when your character is tanking on End is gimping the power, and seriously messing up the fake rules of comic book logic.  When you are focusing something to damage, it does more damage.  When you need to modify that power to do something else (like grab end) the damage suffers.  Otherwise the power is less useful on well running builds.  My DM/Invul Brute uses Dark CONSUMPTION as an attack!  This took years to get comfortable with in a set that behaves real odd compared to all other attack sets.  Now the design is to gimp the power further.....  Um.. Wow.  Just...really?  Just haul out the nerf bat and have it do no damage, then I can drop it from builds without staring at it wondering what to do with it.  

 

 

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14 hours ago, Captain Powerhouse said:

I have not finalized work on this, but the next iteration will deliver the bulk of the damage in DoT form. That will help maintain high damage per click of Dark Equilibrium/Consumption while helping avoiding the inherent safety of a single power removing too many hostile units.

Except it's actually two powers - Soul Drain then Dark Equilibrium - and the first of those has a long cast time.  So you're talking about 3-1/2 seconds as is. Please take that into account on the DoT duration.

Edited by csr
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4 hours ago, Captain Powerhouse said:

Saying this now so it’s not a shock when it testing, the DoT will be over a long period of time, likely 15 seconds. It will likely be a fast ticker, though.

Uhh... no. Like seriously no. No DoT needs to be 15 seconds unless its a rain with a 20' radius.

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7 minutes ago, csr said:

Except it's actually two powers - Soul Drain then Dark Equilibrium - and the first of those has a long cast time.  So you're talking about 3-1/2 seconds as is. Please take that into account on the DoT duration.

Plus, it's like... this is supposed to be a mini-nuke. The entire point of mini-nukes is to "remove hostile units."

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33 minutes ago, ScarySai said:

The problem with that is that wiping out +4 minions is a trivial task. A critical shockwave can do that by itself with some damage buffs.

 

Remember: Dark melee is buffing the everloving crap out of it's own damage, if it's unable to wipe out minions with 200% damage buffs while being balanced like a mini-nuke, it's a garbage ability, full stop.

 

The focus of the discussion has been around the damage, but I don't think you can ignore that its also a utility power. This thing has TWO purposes and only takes up ONE tier in the power set and ONE power selection in your build to get you both. You get +end when you need it, AND a strong  PBAoE attack when you need it, but didn't have to give up anything. If people only want the damage, then just drop the +end utility. 

 

Shockwave won't refill your endurance. Ever. 

Edited by KelvinKole
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It really seems like it's being assumed that Dark melee is just able to naturally hit hard without Soul Drain, it really isn't, Soul Drain saturation is the set's claim to fame. That and the lack of AoE is why Shield is such a good combo for it.

 

Soul drain is a huge part of the equation, a heavily damage buffed AoE SHOULD be wiping things out. 

 

I know a lot of people were critting for crazy amounts on +0 mobs in the first build, so what? If I send my blaster after some +0 mobs I'll be showing you some successive casual 1,500 hits with damage buffs. Please rethink your approach to this.

Edited by ScarySai
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  • Homecoming Team

Hey all! Thanks for all of the feedback thus far.

 

After a lot of consideration and internal discussion, we've decided to roll back the Dark Consumption change to the live values. Shadow Maul changes will remain, and the set might get further reviews in the future.

 

As there's no more changes planned for Dark Melee in this update, we'll now be locking this thread.

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