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If you could change the sentinel (or not) which would you choose?(Poll/Opinions)

Sentinel Poll  

104 members have voted

  1. 1. If you could revamp sentinel as something entirely different or just gently tweak it what would you choose?

    • It's fine as is, no change necessary.
      12
    • Keep the archetype and opportunity mechanic largely the same, just increase the rate it builds up and increase it's buff and debuff values.
      34
    • Change it's opportunity mechanic to an active marked target power that adds primary power set specific effects, debuffs, bonuses to the sentinel or effect procs for attacking a marked target.
      36
    • Give it dominator style hybrid offense and make it's mechanic increase your ranged power as you melee, and melee power as you attack with ranged.
      9
    • Completely change it! Go crazy with it, Make it a tanker controller, a scrappy defender, a mastermind mashup- Anything else but this!
      22


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Now I can see my Sentinels having a role in teams of my own vision, thanks for all that input Nihilii. Scrappers sometimes splinter off, away from team support etc, away from most centralized damage.  I'm gonna follow them around. 

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Some players make their characters all about them, if it doesn't help them, they don't want it, their build advice to you will ofcourse be about making your character the best thing that helps them too if they ever team with you, because it's always about them.

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Posted (edited)

Honstly i would remove opportunity and add either of these:

 

1: if enemies are within a proximity to you you get a defensive bonus to better defend yourself but if there are none you get an offensive bonus allowing you to serve as a single target backline.

 

2. Get two different toggles, one for offense one for defense that cant have both on. Offensive increases your damage and has a 7.5% increase to enemy damage taken around you while defense increases your health and decreases enemy damage in a small area around you. If both are off then you have live sentinel stats but turning one on increases your stats to an effective level

Edited by Jotun

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21 hours ago, NEW DAWN said:

Now I can see my Sentinels having a role in teams of my own vision, thanks for all that input Nihilii. Scrappers sometimes splinter off, away from team support etc, away from most centralized damage.  I'm gonna follow them around. 

An experience I had today pretty well encapsulates the Sentinel's role on a team.  In the Mary Macomber TF, I stood where the witches spawn, nuked them as they appeared, soaking the alpha, and then applied vulnerability to the AV, ten times in a row.

 

That's pretty much the niche I've carved out on teams.  First into a spawn, nuke, soften up hard targets, kill runners.

 

Oh and if I'm feeling precious I can hoverblast until Dull Pain comes back.

 

I certainly wouldn't mind a slightly higher damage scalar, but I don't think the AT needs reinventing.

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Posted (edited)
17 minutes ago, Chaos String said:

An experience I had today pretty well encapsulates the Sentinel's role on a team.  In the Mary Macomber TF, I stood where the witches spawn, nuked them as they appeared, soaking the alpha, and then applied vulnerability to the AV, ten times in a row.

 

That's pretty much the niche I've carved out on teams.  First into a spawn, nuke, soften up hard targets, kill runners.

 

Oh and if I'm feeling precious I can hoverblast until Dull Pain comes back.

 

I certainly wouldn't mind a slightly higher damage scalar, but I don't think the AT needs reinventing.

I don't know if the mage tanking will work throughout the game (probably will as IO sets and incarnates change the hardness setting without additional game content) but yeah, they're guards, so that's support fire, taking damage, dictating the battle field to a certain extent, yeah fits well, when players, usually scrapperlocked disappear around the map off into something that's over their heads and other team members can't compromise the main team by supporting them, I'm doing it. If a map is too easy and you need to make it harder splitting the team in parts is good.

Edited by NEW DAWN

Some players make their characters all about them, if it doesn't help them, they don't want it, their build advice to you will ofcourse be about making your character the best thing that helps them too if they ever team with you, because it's always about them.

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I've not been playing the AT very long, and not to significant level, but I'm not really seeing much benefit from the Opportunity inherent.  I'm not sure what I'd change it to, but it doesn't seem to be doing much for me.


The other thing I would have liked is to be able to use the Assault power sets from the Dominator.  My current main, Ultimo, was conceived as a kind of mutant Iron Man (armoured, with great strength and blasts).  In the old days I made him a Blaster, so he had the strength (melee attacks) and ranged blasts, but no defense.  The Sentinel has the defense (Invulnerability) and the blasts, but no melee.  The Assault sets (Energy Assault, in this case) would have given him all three aspects, Armour, Blasts and Punches.

 

So, if there was going to be any changes, these are the things I might change.

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6 hours ago, Ultimo said:

I've not been playing the AT very long, and not to significant level, but I'm not really seeing much benefit from the Opportunity inherent.  I'm not sure what I'd change it to, but it doesn't seem to be doing much for me.


The other thing I would have liked is to be able to use the Assault power sets from the Dominator.  My current main, Ultimo, was conceived as a kind of mutant Iron Man (armoured, with great strength and blasts).  In the old days I made him a Blaster, so he had the strength (melee attacks) and ranged blasts, but no defense.  The Sentinel has the defense (Invulnerability) and the blasts, but no melee.  The Assault sets (Energy Assault, in this case) would have given him all three aspects, Armour, Blasts and Punches.

 

So, if there was going to be any changes, these are the things I might change.

 

Epics have melee attacks.  One of the Patrons even has Knockout Blow.

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I'd drop defensive opportunity, make offensive opportunity trigger off of any attack, and remove the cooldown so that as soon as you apply opportunity it drains and you can build it again.

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I'd like to take time out and thank you all for participating in general so far and putting your own takes and breakdowns and explanations in this thread.
I figured a more centralized thread with the at a glance numbers to go with the opinions would have a bit more oomph and give devs something to really consider, VS just dry speculation on it's own.

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ungimp the stuff that was gimped in the first place

 

Damage Scale

AOE 

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On 3/10/2020 at 4:50 AM, nihilii said:

The comment wasn't meant to target you or anyone in this thread. Rather, I see hyperbolic statements against Sentinels on the boards as a whole.

 

A few days ago: "Sentinels do less damage than Defenders without damage procs". That is actual hyperbole, because factually impossible given equivalent care put into each build. Most if not all Sentinel primaries can reach 250+ ST DPS once fully built. A Defender without damage procs would struggle to reach 200 DPS. Perhaps Storm could do it, but even that is up in the air. Heck, for that matter I've had trouble reaching 250 DPS on a Defender WITH damage procs. My Time/Sonic built for DPS is under that.

And I'm giving Defenders the best case scenario here: ANY Defender vs MOST Sentinels (= picking the weakest). If you compare a FF/Nrj Defender to a Fire/Bio Sentinel, it's not going to look pretty for the Defender in a pure damage comparison.

 

I do have some problems with your own numbers, but not so much I'd call you "hyperbolic" in a passive aggressive way. 😉 You say your procced out Fire/Bio/Psi deals "between 280 and 340 DPS", but I've never managed to go *below* 300 DPS on my own Fire/Bio/Psi, even without Hybrid.

I'd like to echo everything Nihilli's said in this thread. 

 

For context, I'll also add that 280-340 DPS is actually a very large number, in absolute terms.  It may not win you any awards in the Pylon thread, these days, but it wasn't that long ago (in terms of the game's development cycle) that ~250 was top-tier performance.  We've had a lot of power creep since then, some of it unevenly distributed (e.g. the proc meta tends to favor melee sets, all else being equal), but I think we should all try to remember that 250 DPS is still more than enough to cruise in most any content.

 

When it comes to Tanker builds dealing 300+ DPS, I think you will find those tend to be either Titan Weapons, Bio Armor, or both. In any balance discussion it's critical to recognize both sets are broken=overpowered (on melee ATs). Rationally TW needs a huge nerf, but it would be socially untenable to do so; so we have to be fair and exclude TW from balance comparisons (much like it makes sense for the HC devs to show us stats exclusing Fiery Armor brutes). As for Bio Armor, it's also brokenly good to throw a damage aura AND a -res aura AND a damage boost AND extra toxic damage. Sentinels get a somewhat more rational version thanks to lacking the auras... although it still makes /Fire sad in comparison.

 

In fairness, I'll note that I have an Elec/SS tank that can hit 370 DPS.  Amusingly though, the tank buffs did nothing to help him achieve that.  A huge chunk of that performance comes from procs, which means that the loss of Bruising may even be a net nerf.  You might say, "See?  If Tankers can do that much DPS, then Sentinels must be hugely underpowered!"  But my ranged Fire/Temporal Blaster hits roughly the same number against a Pylon.  If we're just looking at DPS comparisons, the Blaster has a far bigger beef.

 

Regardless, Nihilli's point here is well taken.  High-DPS tank builds are outliers.  Intra-AT balance issues may well plague Sentinels more than other ATs, but that issue affects everyone to some degree.

 

The Sentinel is in an awkward place, balance wise.  I understand why people are dissatisfied, and I don't dispute that the AT could use some adjustment - particularly to its offensive powersets, which seem to have been thrown together without much rhyme or reason, and which also inherit a number of long-standing imbalances from legacy blast sets (e.g. huge DPA discrepancies).  But comprehensive mez protection and near-Scrapper-level durability are huge advantages, which I think a lot of people on this forum underestimate.  Blasters' ability to slot IO +DEF bonuses does not, in fact, make them as survivable as Sentinels; nor can Blasters as a whole class routinely and effortlessly annihilate Sentinel damage output. 

 

In most cases, I suspect the Blaster/Sentinel damage comparison is quite a bit closer than most people realize.

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12 hours ago, Obitus said:

In fairness, I'll note that I have an Elec/SS tank that can hit 370 DPS.

*desire to reroll intensifies*

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In my opinion, all they need are either one, two or all of the following:

  • Increase their damage modifier
  • Increase their aoe target cap
  • Overhaul their opportunity mechanic to add a small stacking -res in all (or certain) attacks.

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The main change I am looking for is a tweek to Defensive Opportunity so if the character is already at full health, the return should increase End instead; because I rarely use my Defensive Opportunity, due to being full health already; but I understand it's use so I wouldn't advise removing it altogether. Just make it useful for those with full health already. 

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50+ water/SR sentinel...

 

Between dehydrate and defensive opportunity it's tons of healing as I spam attacks.

 

Hard no vote on removing the healing component of opportunity. It's amazing.

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Posted (edited)
46 minutes ago, Argentum Draco said:

The main change I am looking for is a tweek to Defensive Opportunity so if the character is already at full health, the return should increase End instead; because I rarely use my Defensive Opportunity, due to being full health already; but I understand it's use so I wouldn't advise removing it altogether. Just make it useful for those with full health already. 

Defensive already restores endurance.  

 

This kinda reminds of me of some of the suggestions thrown around last year.  Like folks would say the AT needs a 10% damage boost over what Mids was reporting.  Which was like "Well, you're in luck because the in game scalar is 0.95 not 0.75".  

Or other humorous musings like giving 5% damage buff.  People didn't notice that their powers already impose a minor defense and resistance debuff at all times.  What got me to notice was seeing powers that have 0 debuffs on other ATs have them in the Sentinel power description.  These effects also show up under a Power Analyzer used against targets.  

 

The inherent for Sentinels is utterly cryptic and clunky.  It is no wonder people hate it because it isn't easy to understand nor is it easy to use.  On top of that, it isn't at the level of class defining that others end up as like Domination or Fury.  

 

So on top of tweaks, it also needs a clear description of what it does.  Flavor text is nice and all but it sucks for making informed decisions.

Edited by oldskool

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22 hours ago, oldskool said:

Defensive already restores endurance.  

 

This kinda reminds of me of [ ... ]

you are 100% wrong. explain, in detail exactly how you came to this erroneous conclusion because I went out on a Rad/Fire Sent, used irridate to waste all my End, activated defensive, and only heath was returned. My endurence stayed at it's normal return rate. 

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10 minutes ago, Argentum Draco said:

you are 100% wrong. explain, in detail exactly how you came to this erroneous conclusion because I went out on a Rad/Fire Sent, used irridate to waste all my End, activated defensive, and only heath was returned. My endurence stayed at it's normal return rate. 

Combat logs?

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Argentum Draco said:

you are 100% wrong. explain, in detail exactly how you came to this erroneous conclusion because I went out on a Rad/Fire Sent, used irridate to waste all my End, activated defensive, and only heath was returned. My endurence stayed at it's normal return rate. 

Easy there sparky. 

 

I spent quite a bit of time testing Opportunity last summer.  For a few weeks I devoted about 4 hours a week, mostly in a single play sessions, sitting on the test server when it was call Justin observing behavior.  

BUT since you decided to say I was 100% wrong and so erroneous on my conclusion, I just logged into two characters I have at 50.  One has full IOs, and the other doesn't.  The one without a full build only has a single Performance Shifter +End proc which easy to monitor since it has its own message.  

My full IO build for this is Dual Pistols/Nin.  In triggering defensive opportunity my endurance gain during the 15 second duration was a net positive vs running without it.  My build drives my attack chain cost very low though and my natural restore is far greater.  Still, even using Bullet Rain on the Comic Con map, I notice an increase in endurance.  Panacea and Performance Shifter procs have their own message in the combat logs.

The other character has very low end management since it isn't complete.  Its a Water Blast user that an old hold over for tests.  I drove down her endurance to 65% out of 100% (no end buffs).  During Defensive Opportunity her endurance drain held between 62% and 66%.  

Without Defensive Opportunity running endurance fell off from 65% to 33%.  I triggered Defensive Opportunity, and endurance went from 33 to 38%.  Then the endurance held between casts and slowly started to creep upwards.  

 

Edit: And during the summer I ran a few Pylon tests with Dual Pistols.  I noticed a difference in endurance drain without using Defensive Opportunity before I had finished my build.  I included Dual Wield in my tests there after since using it to trigger Defensive Opportunity was enough end drain halt/return for me to ignore using the Endurance heal entirely.  This became a minor DPS increase vs using the click restore since that power has a long animation and DW at least does some damage.  

 

Edit 2: Logged into Brainstorm and rolled up a Radiation Blast/Random Secondary.  (All toggles turned off - only attacks drained end)

 

1) Gave myself xp to 50 via Freebies macro

2) Went to Rikti War Zone for the dummies 

3) Used Brawl, X-Ray, Neutrino, Irradiate only. 

4) While building Opportunity, endurance drained from 100 to 75.  

5) Waited for X-Ray to recharge and triggered Defensive Opportunity at 90% end. 

6) Attacked until 15 seconds were over

7) Noted endurance-- 100%

8 Restart test to build Opportunity

9) Used Neutrino to trigger Offensive Opportunity 

10) Ended 15 second run at 80% endurance 

11) Let endurance build to 100% again.  

12) Built Opportunity - Triggered Defensive again.  

13) Initiated attacks at 90% endurance.  

14) Ended with 100% endurance

15) Repeated Offensive Opportunity.  Started at 90% endurance and ended at 75% endurance.  

 

Conclusion: Without using either Opportunity it is easy to drain endurance from 100 to 75.  Using Offensive Opportunity drains end at the same rate as not using any inherent effect at all.  Defensive Opportunity ended the attack sequence at 100% each time.  The above can be replicated by anyone.  Knock yourself out.  

Improving endurance efficiency can convert Defensive Opportunity into positive gains for the duration or so I have observed when I actively build for that.  Trying to hammer out really expensive AoEs may change end return.  Radiation Blast's base costs run 18 for Irradiate and 15 for Haze and Bomb.  Conversely, I run Empty Clips which is a base cost of only 10 and Bullet Rain which has a base cost of 16.  When I just tested my level 50 I was noting positive increase to my endurance during Empty Clips (modified 6.48 end) and there were no procs from Panacea or Performance Shifter.  Though both of those did proc the moment I stopped attacking.  

 

So even without endurance modification in powers of a level 50 Water Blaster and a level 7 Radiation Blaster they were seeing either neutral endurance loss or positive return (due to lack of a full chain  there is time for natural endurance restore, sure) during Defensive Opportunity.  In a character with actual slotted endurance management, Defensive Opportunity became positive endurance gain during AoE situations.  Though it really isn't necessary for that character since they have layers of end management.  

 

Edit 3:  - Leveled to 50.  Rad Blast/Rad Armor - none of the passives that help endurance were taken.  

 

1) No passive endurance added, no enhancements to Stamina slotted

2) All attacks run 1 accuracy common IO, 1 end reduc and 1 recharge reduc 

3) Proceeded to use the 4 single target attacks same as before.  

4) No inherent and Offensive Opportunity would drain endurance down.  Defensive Opportunity always ended in the 90's to 100.  

 

Conclusion: Yup, Defensive does build endurance.  

 

2 hours ago, underfyre said:

Combat logs?

Yes.

 

Combat log tells you exactly how much health you gain back.  It also has a message to the effect (paraphrase) "and you restore some endurance".  In order to see the endurance doing anything positive I use the Combat Attributes monitor to see exactly how much endurance is running in the bar.  

You can watch endurance drain with an attack sequence with and without Defensive Opportunity and literally watch the numbers vary only slightly.  If you build additional endurance management this can turn into positive gains.  

Edited by oldskool
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i was mistaken that you were 100% incorrect: you were right that there is a system note that a minor amount of end is returned, however, due to the fact that the monitored stats has no perceptible change in end when the opportunity procced, other than base rate and stamina I will change my statement to you are 90% incorrect.

 

Instead of listing your story of hours logged to imply experience, try instead to list actual facts, being as it is your claim that endurance was actually returned. where are your logs listing this return? where is the data?

 

all you list is your observations, including your personal modifications (why are you testing endurance  returns on a build with prefomance shifter?).  

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I don't think Argumentum Draco realizes who OldSkool is, when it comes to Sentinel expertise.  In a nutshell, Sunsette and he wrote the book on play-testing Sentinels.  I don't know anyone here who knows as much as he does: maybe Sovera and Nihilii come close, but not quite.


@Rathstar

Energy/Energy Blaster (50+3) on Everlasting

Energy/Temporal Blaster (50+3) on Excelsior

Energy/Willpower Sentinel (50+3) on Indomitable

Energy/Energy Sentinel (50+1) on Torchbearer

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On 3/12/2020 at 3:16 PM, Obitus said:

In most cases, I suspect the Blaster/Sentinel damage comparison is quite a bit closer than most people realize.

And in quite a few cases, they couldn't be farther apart.  It's why I gave up on Sentinels after playing about a dozen of them to 50+.  It's far easier to make a tanky Blaster than it is to make a blasty Sentinel. 😞


@Rathstar

Energy/Energy Blaster (50+3) on Everlasting

Energy/Temporal Blaster (50+3) on Excelsior

Energy/Willpower Sentinel (50+3) on Indomitable

Energy/Energy Sentinel (50+1) on Torchbearer

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I'm sitting here dumbfounded after having read possibly the most detailed breakdown of testing protocol on these boards, only for the answer to be... "dude, those are just, like, your personal observations, man. where's the data?!?!"

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Posted (edited)

My personal observation is we live in a quantum entangled universe that is similar to the matrix the reality is I have to wake up, raise a family and go to work everyday.  As well as live with the fact that defensive opportunity recovers endurance reality is a tough pill to swallow.

55ed112d2264a5fa812708740c8f8f1c.gif

 

 

Again raise target cap to 16 and go from there for rebalance.

 

The question I think everyone should try to figure out is.

 

What is a Sentinel to you?

 Tank 

Healer

Damage.

Debuffer

What should its role be?

 

Without jumping on blasters toes with more damage. My personal opinion is there are two paths to go range tank playstyle or range scrapper  with low target cap like it is now. Go range tank give punchvoke with 16 target cap or stay similar right now but increase damage  significantly  similar to scrapper with a different mechanic with low target cap.

Edited by Ironscarlet

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I discovered something recently.

The Sentinel secondaries are hella stronk! You can slot them minimally with just one (though I prefer 2 for set bonuses). Moreover, they're even strong enough to not need Tough and Weave nor the added res from Leaping pool and Sorcery pool. This not only frees up a lot of slots for primaries which can help up your damage (which now comes close to Blasters)*, but also more unorthrodox power pool pics such as Presence and the bottom two of Leadership (Vengeance and Victory) -- which in turn will add more functionality to the AT during team play.

 

- - -

I voted change the Opp mechanic to a marked target one. This , too, will further bump up the importance of the AT in such instances like AV killing.

Another point I read above is about the def/res debuff, which I think is largely underrated. At the same time, not all power sets share this "talent," as some will have almost all powers have some sort of buff/debuff, while others barely do. Again, this mechanic will be another point for making the Sentinel relevant in teams. (incidentally, a -regen or -max hp might be a good addition/change to some Sent powers).

Honestly, when I play my Sents, I am sometimes wary to join teams. No team member ever said "wait, let me alt to a Sentinel". 

*on damage, the Sentinel's damage will always pale in comparison to Blasters and Corruptors. But factor in the generally faster recharge time of Sentinels, the end stat and effect can give Blasters and Corrs a run for their money. I don't have concrete numbers, though. 

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