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Focused Feedback: Electrical Blast Revamp


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8 minutes ago, Gatling said:

I think you're taking my arguments in bad faith here. I AM looking at it from a min-max perspective, but also from the idea that the AT could benefit from something more direct in general due to how efficient teams / people tend to run. The player won't get use/enjoyment out of it. Which affects everyone trying to play the power set, not just "Min maxers". I'm not some elitist, I'm just running numbers in my head.

For other AT's the idea seems pretty good. Like Sentinel or Defender, but as a Blaster I'm not seeing the benefit. I could be wrong of course, but as of right now? Not sure.

I suppose it's good that it's still faster than Short Circuit, and I would think a blaster might get more out of a CC power than others due to squishiness.  Thank you for clarifying though; I said earlier I might be misunderstanding.  Was I right about the activation time?

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Just now, JayboH said:

I suppose it's good that it's still faster than Short Circuit, and I would think a blaster might get more out of a CC power than others due to squishiness.  Thank you for clarifying though; I said earlier I might be misunderstanding.  Was I right about the activation time?

Yeah, probably activation time is right.
I think activation time could play a big factor. If it came out really fast then it would be a little more negligible. 
Also Tough is only smashing/lethal so that's only applicable in some cases. However Tough does save me more often than I care to admit. Maybe if you have BOTH VS and TC it works out better in the long run, but I can't imagine surviving without both tough and weave as I do now. Especially since weave uses global recharge, which adds a lot of oomph to my build.

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For my blaster build, I ran it with Stealth to leap into a pack and open with Short Circuit.  It's better long-term DPS to open with Ball Lighting, but I prefer to burst kill and then CC survivors (because I'm bad and don't usually have soft-capped defenses on Blasters).

 

So a Blaster opening of Short Circuit > Point blank Ball Lighting = field of "Shocked!" procs.  I'm gonna port over a diff toon now with combat teleport, which I think will be a more dynamic experience, but the outcome is the same: even a Blaster can push out massive saps and then lay on the hurt.

It's enough that I don't feel bad slotting SC with Power Transfer, and I think "interesting slotting" is good for the game.

 

As for Tough/Weave vs TC?  I mean that's build and playstyle dependent, right?  If you feel you bring more value standing back and throwing out casual Holds (that also have very strong ST saps!) then cool, but if you have better things for your build that's also good.

 

tl;dr: I like sapping even on blaster.  Tesla Cage feels worth the buy to me, but I also think it should not hit the point of "must buy."  I think the only Musts in the set are Ball Lightning and Thunderous, and the rest is up to you, which I also classify as a good place to be.

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2 minutes ago, Replacement said:

I think "interesting slotting" is good for the game.

 

As for Tough/Weave vs TC?  I mean that's build and playstyle dependent, right?

Yes to both.

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5 minutes ago, Replacement said:

For my blaster build, I ran it with Stealth to leap into a pack and open with Short Circuit.  It's better long-term DPS to open with Ball Lighting, but I prefer to burst kill and then CC survivors (because I'm bad and don't usually have soft-capped defenses on Blasters).

 

So a Blaster opening of Short Circuit > Point blank Ball Lighting = field of "Shocked!" procs.  I'm gonna port over a diff toon now with combat teleport, which I think will be a more dynamic experience, but the outcome is the same: even a Blaster can push out massive saps and then lay on the hurt.

It's enough that I don't feel bad slotting SC with Power Transfer, and I think "interesting slotting" is good for the game.

 

As for Tough/Weave vs TC?  I mean that's build and playstyle dependent, right?  If you feel you bring more value standing back and throwing out casual Holds (that also have very strong ST saps!) then cool, but if you have better things for your build that's also good.

 

tl;dr: I like sapping even on blaster.  Tesla Cage feels worth the buy to me, but I also think it should not hit the point of "must buy."  I think the only Musts in the set are Ball Lightning and Thunderous, and the rest is up to you, which I also classify as a good place to be.

Well, yeah.

I focus on sapping myself. My playstyle is usually Either open with thunderous or Short circuit. 
So the change to SHOCK is superb for Solo/SMALL groups.
It will see a great boon in over-all dps.

I guess in the end I was hoping for something from TC and VS that I don't really want to u se in the end anyway, my playstyle got buffed so I should be happy.

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1 minute ago, Gatling said:

Well, yeah.

I focus on sapping myself. My playstyle is usually Either open with thunderous or Short circuit. 
So the change to SHOCK is superb for Solo/SMALL groups.
It will see a great boon in over-all dps.

I guess in the end I was hoping for something from TC and VS that I don't really want to u se in the end anyway, my playstyle got buffed so I should be happy.

 

I can't speak to Blaster/Sentinel on the Voltaic front (it was there.  Hopefully more data to come), but I really feel a Defender would be making a mistake if they skipped Voltaic.

 

They tend to backline more than blasters, often have mez protection, and VS really helps to maintain a good sap.  Lets you take a moment to play Support without bosses+ regaining too much juice.

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Looks like elec blast will be super fun and kind of OP for a week or two, while lots of people are playing electric blast, and constantly setting Shock up for each other. Elec Affinity was also super fun and kind of OP for a week or two for similar reasons.

 

As for long-term popularity? Shock looks to be the biggest upside, a solid DPS boost against normalsauce +0 radio mish enemies, accessible to both the Short-Circuit-in-your-face or Tesla-Cage-from-range playstyles.

 

But I see downsides too. Changing the end regain from enhanceable to unenhanceable will raise some average end costs for players who already slot endmod. Difficulty Shocking +4s, AVs, and anything else that's hard to drain might keep both DPS and fun factor about the same as where it is now, in those situations.

 

Tesla Cage buff looks fun, but I have doubts about reusing the Static combo mechanic. A bonus only for a specific primary-secondary pair runs against the free mix-and-match design of the other 99% of powersets. Remember the old Sniper Rifle - Targeting Drone kludge.

 

How about making the Tesla Cage chain condition the same as Shock instead? The lower the target's end, the bigger the chain. First, Tesla Cage would interact with a variety of other powers. Imagine Lightning Storm and Tempest procs setting up a Tesla Cage chain. Second, players wouldn't have to mentally juggle another combo mechanic. More Shock, more chain, easy.

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Looking over the AV and GM Endurance changes. I am thinking "Shocked" vs a target that is an AV/GM is gonna be next to impossible in a single person as Elec group. Which is ultimately lowering the Builds DPS vs AV's / GM's. 

Which takes me back to my unease with lowering AIM's Damage scaling. If you won't see shocked vs Most High level content (AV's Some EB's and GM's) you are just doing less damage period. 

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11 minutes ago, Gatling said:

Looking over the AV and GM Endurance changes. I am thinking "Shocked" vs a target that is an AV/GM is gonna be next to impossible in a single person as Elec group. Which is ultimately lowering the Builds DPS vs AV's / GM's. 

Which takes me back to my unease with lowering AIM's Damage scaling. If you won't see shocked vs Most High level content (AV's Some EB's and GM's) you are just doing less damage period. 

Depends on enemy level.  My testing:

 

Level 50 Defender

SOs only

No Incarnates

 

vs Level 50 AV: I can sap to their 10 endurance floor in under 30 seconds.

 

vs Level 54 AV: a perfect opening salvo and some assistance from primary/epic can get their Endurance down to about 60-70% for a bit.  But then Thunderous Blast and all the Charged Up recovery debuffs start wearing off and they bounce up to the 90s.

 

I can do better with better sap choices and slotting, but this is the purple patch at work, double-to-triple over.  I think you'll need Incarnates (the level shift moreso than the +EndMod opportunities) to sap things of this caliber.

 

Really though, if you have a build on Live that can sap AVs, copy it to Brainstorm and give it a try.

 

For me, 100% of my eBlast attempts have been far far better at sapping in beta than on live.

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4 hours ago, Gatling said:

Looking over the AV and GM Endurance changes. I am thinking "Shocked" vs a target that is an AV/GM is gonna be next to impossible in a single person as Elec group. Which is ultimately lowering the Builds DPS vs AV's / GM's. 

Which takes me back to my unease with lowering AIM's Damage scaling. If you won't see shocked vs Most High level content (AV's Some EB's and GM's) you are just doing less damage period. 

 

So, you really need to actually try this. You can absolutely leverage shock damage as a solo endmod person on a team, even against +3 and +4s, on generics and SOs. 

 

A hint: Make sure you actually slot your damn blasts with endmod.

 

There is a dangerously high level of awesome in this change.

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I don't like VS as a toggle if it's going to shut off while mezzed. Having extra damage while locked down was one of the few perks Electric Blast had and Blasters are particularly prone to being locked down; so much so that they're the only AT who can still fire their "starting attacks" just to avoid auto-dying to random bits of mez. I know we're essentially just trading one inconvenience for another (having to remember to recast the power vs having to turn it on after being mezzed) but a Blaster is going to be getting mezzed more often than they'd be recasting a duration-based VS. Just think of how many times you've played a Defender with an anchor debuff that gets knocked off randomly from enemies who use 0.5 seconds of stun or small duration sleeps, or an attack with a tiny Hold component attached?

 

That's what's going to happen to this new VS design and I won't really enjoy it. It makes one of the neat things about the set, that is, giving Blasters a "pet," almost entirely skippable for me. It's bad enough that Elec Blast has a reputation for having a bunch of skippable powers based on playstyle, so adding another probably isn't going to feel good.

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7 minutes ago, ForeverLaxx said:

That's what's going to happen to this new VS design and I won't really enjoy it. It makes one of the neat things about the set, that is, giving Blasters a "pet," almost entirely skippable for me. It's bad enough that Elec Blast has a reputation for having a bunch of skippable powers based on playstyle, so adding another probably isn't going to feel good.

I do not think this is really going to be the case anymore. All of elecs powers scope out to bring Shock to the table, which is a mad crazy damage up, plus an efficient means of establishing very firm, soft control.

 

I agree on VS. When it first came out I was like, NO SIR. But then I found in any team, it did wonders in a fire and forget way. In fact, it has been so useful that I don't think I mind losing the click deploy. It just takes some time to get used to.

 

For sure though, I would not skip any eleblast powers anymore, unless constrained by power pick selection. And I would absolutely go out of my way to slot synapse or pt, and frankenslot for value needed.

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The main problem with Voltaic Sentinel has always been its short duration. We went through the same thing with Elec Affinity's sentinel, which started at something like 35s and ended at 120s. I daresay making the Voltaic Sentinel a toggle is even worse, because now it's going to die every time you get mezzed, forcing you to stop and resummon it. Or just give up and stop summoning it. If you're getting mezzed regularly like against Malta, you may as well not have the power. That's very strange behavior for what's supposed to be a pet. Isn't the whole point of a pet that it can act independently of you?

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15 minutes ago, Hew said:

I do not think this is really going to be the case anymore. All of elecs powers scope out to bring Shock to the table, which is a mad crazy damage up, plus an efficient means of establishing very firm, soft control.

 

I agree on VS. When it first came out I was like, NO SIR. But then I found in any team, it did wonders in a fire and forget way. In fact, it has been so useful that I don't think I mind losing the click deploy. It just takes some time to get used to.

 

For sure though, I would not skip any eleblast powers anymore, unless constrained by power pick selection. And I would absolutely go out of my way to slot synapse or pt, and frankenslot for value needed.

I find pets to be far more valuable solo than in a team. The amount of damage VS brings to the table, at least in a team setting, is outstripped by the team. The fact it also has no AoE capability hinders this further, and it can't even be an attack target to divert mob attention and absorb a hit.

 

Solo, this VS is going to be useless to me. I don't really care about how it performs in a team setting since old VS is just as impactful there as the new one.

Edited by ForeverLaxx
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exChampion and exInfinity player (Champion primarily).

 

Current resident of the Everlasting shard.

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If you're worried about being mezzed while solo bring Breakfrees, Blasters know this. Store a bunch in your email. Pick up temporary powers to reduce mez durations. Grab an incarnate that provides mez protection. Every encounter in this game has a counter. It's an argument in bad faith to claim otherwise.

 

Voltatic Sentinel is immune to damage so it has trade offs. Now that it's a toggle that recharges in 10 seconds, if you get mezzed, just respawn it if you think that damage will help you in less than 10 seconds. VS has increased DPS too now so it might be worth it to resummon.

 

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3 hours ago, Dispari said:

The main problem with Voltaic Sentinel has always been its short duration. We went through the same thing with Elec Affinity's sentinel, which started at something like 35s and ended at 120s. I daresay making the Voltaic Sentinel a toggle is even worse, because now it's going to die every time you get mezzed, forcing you to stop and resummon it. Or just give up and stop summoning it. If you're getting mezzed regularly like against Malta, you may as well not have the power. That's very strange behavior for what's supposed to be a pet. Isn't the whole point of a pet that it can act independently of you?

You get mezzed more often than once/minute?

 

That's the only way for it to induce more clicks than the Live version.

 

Personally, I just want a better tell when it drops. Can we get a feedback emp effect on ourselves when it drops?

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3 hours ago, Dispari said:

The main problem with Voltaic Sentinel has always been its short duration. We went through the same thing with Elec Affinity's sentinel, which started at something like 35s and ended at 120s. I daresay making the Voltaic Sentinel a toggle is even worse, because now it's going to die every time you get mezzed, forcing you to stop and resummon it. Or just give up and stop summoning it. If you're getting mezzed regularly like against Malta, you may as well not have the power. That's very strange behavior for what's supposed to be a pet. Isn't the whole point of a pet that it can act independently of you?

I see this as balance though, not as a problem with the power. When I summon my Voltaic Sentinel, I know its limitations. It can't be damaged, it rarely does what I want it to, and it is most valuable when I have to engage a group at the mid-30s (acting as a clean up on any minions that I am not focusing my main attacks on). I rarely summon it when teaming because of things outside the purvey of the set (a la damage, via AoE, is king). But during solo play, I know this trade off is balanced because it can't be damaged and it still attacks. As for the huge endurance cost, I know that it can be offset by using the primary's mechanics, endurance recovery.

 

When I am fighting higher level enemies like Malta or Carnival enemies, I know that they are going to do some serious mezzing, so I take my precautions by carrying the appropriate number of inspirations. It will be awesome that the power recharges in 10 seconds now, instead of 60. That is a great balance in my eyes from the click to toggle style. I think the only other pet that acts independently from the player after summon are found in control sets, but I may be wrong. If we are comparing to other pets, it would be fair to say that Voltaic Sentinel is unique to primaries for Blasters, Corruptors, and Sentinels (Defenders get Dark Miasma and Storm Summoning, and Dominators are controller-types).

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Voltaic Sentinel becoming a toggle also came with a tremendous increase to its damage output and endurance drain capabilities. For most of the ATs with access to the power there are still plenty of ways to keep it up while solo, and in a team there should be even more to leverage the damage. Having played elec/elec/elec on live as well, I can attest to it being useful to have out when you are mezzed but to be honest I can't recall too many times where it strictly made the difference in survival or not where Charged Bolts + Lightning Bolt + Electric Fence wouldn't have. 

 

Outside of a mez situation, or if mez is not a factor, the power is tremendously improved which means it has to give way in some form for balance. The endurance cost is actually the same as before if stretched over the previous 60s duration, and combined with Shock should actually be less costly overall.

 

Touching on endurance drain as a whole, it is something incredibly tricky that we have been trying to tackle. Prior to Shock, endurance drain is incredibly binary between useless and "may as well be defeated" if you can maintain an enemy at 0. If a single character can maintain 0 on even the toughest opponents, then that causes a slew of problems with encounter design where we do not want a meta of "bring an electric defender and win". Shock allows there to be interplay from 100 to 0 endurance in some manner so that you can benefit from the process of draining rather than only a full drain, though it is something we are studying from both sides of the spectrum as you see with the change to minimum endurance stats on Elite enemies.

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9 minutes ago, Player-1 said:

Voltaic Sentinel becoming a toggle also came with a tremendous increase to its damage output and endurance drain capabilities. For most of the ATs with access to the power there are still plenty of ways to keep it up while solo, and in a team there should be even more to leverage the damage. Having played elec/elec/elec on live as well, I can attest to it being useful to have out when you are mezzed but to be honest I can't recall too many times where it strictly made the difference in survival or not where Charged Bolts + Lightning Bolt + Electric Fence wouldn't have. 

 

Outside of a mez situation, or if mez is not a factor, the power is tremendously improved which means it has to give way in some form for balance. The endurance cost is actually the same as before if stretched over the previous 60s duration, and combined with Shock should actually be less costly overall.

 

Touching on endurance drain as a whole, it is something incredibly tricky that we have been trying to tackle. Prior to Shock, endurance drain is incredibly binary between useless and "may as well be defeated" if you can maintain an enemy at 0. If a single character can maintain 0 on even the toughest opponents, then that causes a slew of problems with encounter design where we do not want a meta of "bring an electric defender and win". Shock allows there to be interplay from 100 to 0 endurance in some manner so that you can benefit from the process of draining rather than only a full drain, though it is something we are studying from both sides of the spectrum as you see with the change to minimum endurance stats on Elite enemies.

I've been back and forth on the best way to approach that binary conundrum of 0 being godly and 1 not making much of an impact solo unless specifically slotted and built for max mechanic utilization (with the changes to EB/AV end recovery countering that approach). That being said, I think it's a good start with the Static mechanic and the feedback we get will help dial in the niche and get Electric Blast on par with other Blast primaries.

Edited by Glacier Peak
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Something I feel is important from my AV Drain tests:

 

Voltaic Sentinel Activation Time - During my AV Drain tests, I noticed a huge benefit to VS being a toggle is not losing 3 seconds of sapping time to refresh it (particularly noticeable running double elec Defender, so I can compare the experiences of Galvanic and Voltaic).

 

There's a subtle (and likely accidental) interplay there - Sapping vs special targets is not at all like other debuffs.  It stops being there (aside from Shock % chance) the moment you let up.

Meanwhile, VS is must-have to maintain a sap on a hardened target because they apply a new Recovery debuff on every hit vs a sapped target (via their guaranteed Shocked! proc, which will stack with your procs).

 

Put these 2 ideas together and what you get is that recasting VS is seriously damaging to continued sapping, which has won me over to the toggle.

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Just FYI; there's nothing balanced about Electricity Assault. Its damage is very poor, and VS as tier 9 is a joke. Please, I beg you, fix this assault in the near future. Feel free to remove Static Discharge, and VS if you want to replace with something else.

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The changes to short circuit provides the biggest QoL and game play benefit for drain builds. I took my Elec/Energy for a spin against +4/8 Unai BP map and it was instrumental in me being able to quickly sap a group and reduce the risk of a mez stopping my game plan during the short circuit animation.

 

The chain mechanic is a nice bonus when it's applicable. In my run there were too many runners to make good use of the chain mechanic. It's not something I will open a fight with either, because you NEED to SC first and follow with BL to maximize the "drain alpha strike"

 

The shock mechanic is nice, I won't say no to added damage.

 

I took VS and used it on the map, I did get mezzed a few times but not enough to sour my opinion on it. I felt it moved a bit slow, and it's not something I depended on to help me kill the stuff I'm trying to kill. It did tag some runners and I won't say no to free damage. For regular game play it's not necessary, but for AV/GM hard target fights it can come in handy.

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Liberty, Torchbearer, Excelsior, Everlasting

Jezebel Delias

Level 50 Fire/Elec/Mace Blaster

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14 hours ago, Hew said:

 

So, you really need to actually try this. You can absolutely leverage shock damage as a solo endmod person on a team, even against +3 and +4s, on generics and SOs. 

 

A hint: Make sure you actually slot your damn blasts with endmod.

 

There is a dangerously high level of awesome in this change.

I have been an Elec/ Blaster for years. I've never been out-end drained by anyone on a team I'm with. I Know to have end mod slotted. I have a post on Elec/En blasting in this very Forum where people kept telling me how useless elec truly is, and I found an absurdly high number of people who didn't believe me despite direct video evidence to the contrary. 

That being said, I'm just running theories as I haven't had proper time to test all the nuances. But I'm usually not that far off base when I run ideas. I am going to give it a try but to CoH's credit Different Powersets on AV's have very different results. Some AV's have Buffs that remove or reduce End drains effectiveness, and a blanket buff to an AV's End generation seems unreasonable when coupled with the added ability to still attack despite having no endurance.

Edit: Just tried to take Malaise at +4 AV. His End regen was unstoppable and I got 1 shocked off after an AIM+BU+PB Thunderous. Then Never got his end low enough again. So yeah, even with Malaise being a bad match up, he was not drainable solo, as I said.

Edit 2: Even going all out the "shocked" was only available after a full power Thunderous and a Ton of Purples. So basically, completely shut down with seeing no true benefit from the shocked status effect.

Do you have another AV I should try ? Perhaps an AV that used to be drain-able before?

Edited by Gatling
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Regarding VS being a toggle, where were all the complaints all these years for blaster damage auras having to be turned back on after getting mezzed?  Suddenly this is a problem?

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