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Veat- SoA (mostly Bane) & Crab discussion


Plutoria

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Over the years of playing many support classes and falling in love with all the flavors of Veats ( fort and widow too!) I've poured more hours into these classes ( and still so much more to explore) than I should admit to. While I'm not as active on the forums as to many other amazing contributors providing great information, discussion and general encouragement to other community members to give these fantastic ATs a try, suffice to say I've enjoyed the journey I've made exploring the possibilities and build variations of the Veats. Of the 4 I feel it is fair to admit that I've spent more time with the bane variation than the others. Being a support minded player being able to soft crowd control, offer team buffs, and an array of de-buffs naturally would gain my affection. Often times proposed changes and QoL requests always fall into the MOAR DAMAGE demands, I want to ideally avoid that here. Instead propose a few possible facelifts for the SoA as the devs and community have contributed to fantastic changes, thoughtful QoL updates and the addition even of more challenging content rewarding team play!

 

It is no secret over the years from days of live to homecoming the game naturally progresses with a scaling power creep. Generally speaking, from set bonuses , procs, temp powers and incarnates most of this scaling is available for all to enjoy and further develop their character and class of choice. Occasionally some abilities, power sets and abilities fall behind as new content and power-sets are added to the game. An example many of us are aware of was force field, the changes made imho were fantastic and well thought out and complimented much of the newer content and changes made to the game over the years regarding defense. With some of this context being in mind those that have taken the time to read this may end up seeing where I'm going with this.

 

Proposed updates:

Defense Debuff Resist

Bane Spider Armor

Crab Omega Maneuver

Crab Serum

 

Regarding (and the player supported huntsman AT) Bane Spider Armor:

1) Ideally increase natural status protection

2) Add Health enhancement slotting to Bane Spider armor.

 

General baseline durability has always been a little short. As mentioned previously, with access to set bonus, temps, incarnates there are ways to fill holes.

The focus however is class identity. The executioner and the huntsmen are fearsome opponents. The version we have baseline are more like tissue paper in comparison. Crab, Fort, Widow all have amazing defensive, bulky and other additions to assist in their "toughness". Bane baseline was like a early version of Ninjitsu...only with less status protection, no self heal and no defense debuff resistance.

 

 

Bane Spider armor from a base of 4 protection up to 6 or 8 ( effectively bringing it to 8-10 total with wolf spider armor)

It is terrifying when the temp power defense amplifier drops and that extra buffer of status protection is lost when in the thick of combat or getting hit by AoE stuns and other things. It is also particular punishing when doing content that prevents the use of defense amplifier to help fill this hole.  This would bring it closer inline not only with the other veats ( fort/widow being in the 10 range and crab in the 14 range) but also our scrappy counterparts that find themselves in the fray of melee ( blasters and heats having their own variations of protection dynamic to achieve results). I intentionally have not made mention of KB protection. There are other armor sets that also do not have KB prot included and you can achieve suitable levels of KB prot from set bonuses. Unlike temp powers these bonuses are not restricted from game content.

Pool powers also add access to status protection so in general I feel this change is more QoL than balance urgency.

 

 

Add Health enhancement slotting to Bane Spider armor with either limited enhancement capabilities or full. SoA's are pretty slot starved ( and power selection) as it is, so I don't feel this would be overly game breaking but more adding the option to players in how they  seek to customize their character. The base health is at 214 HP for the Bane Spider armor. Veat max health is around 2400 which as is, requires exclusive focus on HP set hunting to get close to 2000. Alternatively could increase the base to around 300-400 and leave it as is only accepting the default resist sets. If this change would be made however I would equally suggest then next change for Crab.

 

Regarding Crab

Crab Serum

Crab Omega Maneuver

 

Bring Serum more in line on par with Dull Pain. The current version only adds up to around 428Hp base ( which is about half of what Bane base line is). Enhanced you are looking at around just shy of 700 with a 900ish heal ( ignoring incarnate and bonuses). Dull Pain on a scrapper is in the ball park of 1150 heal and 850 HP boost. Alternatively perhaps add a endurance discount or Regen/recovery bonus (effectively a hybrid between dull pain and energize but lower values).

 

Crab Omega Maneuver

I know this has been covered many times over the years. The damage for it's tier is anemic. It tends to be more on par with some lighter hitting defender nukes. ( honestly it is closer to the defender trip mine in damage...very underwhelming) I've gone through testing where I'll even massively debuff foes, stripping resistance and yet even with a fully damage boosted Omega, the hardest I seem to get it to hit for is almost a total of 150 damage. Frenzy which tends to be on the tickle factor of damage can even reach higher numbers. That said, the request I have isn't actually about the damage. But rather the unique taunt function. Going with the idea of Veats offering team support this is such a interesting and cool mechanic. If anything I would just suggest lowering the cool-down on the power itself so that with recharge investment or cool down reduction team buffs it falls more in line with the 35-60 second uptime like most other nukes. Rather than just chasing and bloating DPS as a focus , lean more into the alpha soaking role it plays. Perhaps even add a debuffing side effect to those that survive the blast like how seeker drones add a -tohit and - dmg debuff. Perhaps it could lower defense, resistance, damage or tohit. But truly just a shorter cool down would do the trick. The alpha soaking mostly assists in lower level content play. At 50 with sets and incarnates, The crabs I've built can just walk face first into groups of foes like Malta and Arachnos anyway at 50.  However with the introduction of hard mode content and other challenges this taunt mechanic could be a fun tool to use to support the team and tank/brutes in the form of additional crowd control by briefly distracting foes.

 

 

Primary change request is DDR.

 

The difference between having Ageless DDR and nothing is night and day. The Bane in particular can very quickly get shredded. Once I'm able to keep Ageless Radial Epiphany up survivaliabilty jumps ten fold. That isn't to say it instantly becomes impervious to death. I just don't feel as fragile as say a corrupter or blaster without any buffing/debuffing support. Forts and widows get a base of roughly 34% and enhanced reaches around 54%. Elude brings a widow up further to about 80%. I'm not suggesting it needs to reach those levels. Bane in particular is a bit more of a hybrid of defense and resist almost like shield. Fort and Widow are more in line with Super Reflexes.

Ageless offers between 21-42 DDR roughly as it ticks down. Many defense and defense hybrid armor sets tend to also be in the 30-50 ball park of DDR.

A 30-40 DDR on bane would be just enough to protect it's defenses from being critically stripped within seconds. All defense sets run the risk of critical failure that is part of the game design.. but the moment you step into combat and everything is stripped while having less inherent "bulk" than a crab or scaling resists of widows/forts can be very frustrating. It also makes for a very difficult leveling experience needing to wait till you can max out destiny and throw tons of investment into set bonuses/min maxing. I feel this sadly discourages many people from truly getting to enjoy the Bane since each of the others just "work" more fluid ( endurance woes aside) through their leveling experience. The player supported "huntsman" actually offers a far more friendly leveling experience since it can stay at range much as other squishy ATs/Powersets do. On a personal note, I only started a bane years back (and fell in love with it) because via Mids, they just looked so awful and sad compared to everything else (other veats) I wanted to make it a personal challenge to see what I could accomplish. The class design really surprised me and I love the tool kit and theme.

 

How to implement DDR

 

I would suggest either baked into Bane armor ( not enhanceable) at a set value. 

Added to Cloaking Device (enhanceable)

Or..

Splitting between the cloaking/armor option and adding the other amount to tactical Training Maneuvers. As mentioned at the start of this post what I love most about the Veat class identity is how it is a force multiplier as a team support class. Adding part of the DDR to team maneuvers compliments the support theme design, adds value as a support class since DDR as a team buff is fairly limited. As mentioned before, shield and force field being sets that offer this valuable resistance as well. Forts/Widows bring the extra psi resist and tohit while Crabs/banes could now bring additional buffing support in the form of a team DDR boost. 

 

The split could even be as simple as 21% baked into the Bane ( via Armor or cloaking) while the other 21% into the shared Maneuvers which equally benefits the Crab and still giving a defense edge to the bane while the crab keeps its bulky HP/Resist identity. From a team perspective this also helps makes them interchangeable since they provide the same amount of DDR to team. The percentages themselves I'm just pulling from ageless since it makes a noticeable difference yet isn't a game breaking amount ( and often lower than every other source of DDR in a armor set). Even when running true defense sets  or widow/forts, I still grab ageless simply due to how valuable and noticeable having DDR is.

 

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1 hour ago, Plutoria said:

Regarding (and the player supported huntsman AT) Bane Spider Armor:

1) Ideally increase natural status protection

Bane Spider Armor Upgrade already provides Mag -4 protection against all mezzes and +40% mez resistance. And that stacks with the Wolf Spider Armor's Mag -2 protection against all mezzes and +30% mez resistance. Why do you want to increase their status protection?

 

1 hour ago, Plutoria said:

General baseline durability has always been a little short. As mentioned previously, with access to set bonus, temps, incarnates there are ways to fill holes.

The focus however is class identity. The executioner and the huntsmen are fearsome opponents. The version we have baseline are more like tissue paper in comparison. Crab, Fort, Widow all have amazing defensive, bulky and other additions to assist in their "toughness". Bane baseline was like a early version of Ninjitsu...only with less status protection, no self heal and no defense debuff resistance.

I have to disagree. My Bane Spider, after going Bane, was near unkillable even before I managed to fully slot my IOs. (And Huntsmen aren't any more a threat even at low levels than other bosses. And I'd argue less of a threat than other faction bosses. That's just my take on fighting Wolf Spider Huntsmen though.)

 

1 hour ago, Plutoria said:

SoA's are pretty slot starved ( and power selection) as it is,

Please tell me you are joking. SoAs aren't any more slot starved than any other AT. (You want slot starved? Play a Kheldian.) As for power selection? Banes have access to their choice of 18 different primary powers and 10 secondaries to other AT's 9 and 9. (Not counting Kheldians.) Plus all the same access to pools (except for APPs since they only get access to PPPs).

 

1 hour ago, Plutoria said:

Bring Serum more in line on par with Dull Pain. The current version only adds up to around 428Hp base ( which is about half of what Bane base line is).

https://cod.uberguy.net/html/power.html?power=training_gadgets.crab_spider_training.serum&at=arachnos_soldier

https://cod.uberguy.net/html/power.html?power=scrapper_defense.regeneration.dull_pain&at=scrapper

Serum: 428.36 per Mids (And you have Crab Spider Armor Upgrade, Fortification, Wolf Spider Armor, and (for defense) Combat Training: Defensive with Tactical Training: Maneuvers.)

Dull Pain: 535.45 per Mids (And you have Resilience for damage resist. I'm not counting MoG because it isn't a constant use effect.)

 

As for the DDR? ... ... ... Others can answer that one....

 

Edit: And yes, I play VEATs, I've played every version of the VEAT except for the pure Fortunata. Which is why I am wondering why anyone thinks they need to be improved.

 

Edited by Rudra
Edited to add "I'm not counting MoG because it isn't a constant use effect".
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I appreciate your view and take on the discussion. At the core I actually agree and share many similar view points as yourself. They are in my personal opinion a well designed class that offers much flexibility and variety of build and play styles within their varied power selection. In regards to "Which is why I am wondering why anyone thinks they need to be improved. " I'm honestly not sure how else to further add context. My primary influence was really based on observations and personal experience of how DDR comes into play in how the game has scaled over time and in relation to defense based powersets. I equally agree and thought I was able to communicate how the suggestions I gave outside of DDR implementation were primarily more QoL than balance given the variety of options to build, play and leverage the fantastic tool set SoA has. So I do apologize in my failure to establish that.

 

I would say  if anything it is a testament to the class itself as I attempted to look at aspect's outside of DDR and all I could really suggest were

Bane Spider Armor possibilities which as mentioned would be more QoL than balance. I agree with you, Banes are absolutely amazing between leveraging their toolkit  and further improved once set bonuses and incarnates come into play. I feel it really is a class that gets slept on when compared to the appeal of forts, widows and crabs. In a way Veats in general have made it hard to stay invested in other AT's for me personally like stalkers, scrappers and brutes as they can be built to achieve amazing results PLUS all of the team support they provide. Mentioning the "tissue paper" comment was in context of many years back of my own experience first trying a bane ( coming from the fort/widow side of things) as well as experiences shared from players of past and attempting to think of minor adjustments that might have been able to provide a slightly smoother experience for a inexperienced player or someone new to using SoA whom are wanting to play a support type of character that plays differently than a defender/troller/corr. Its a old game and on private server so perhaps my mistake is considering what perhaps is such a outlier experience had these days. I don't honestly know on that but my intentions were well aligned. It was literally all I could think of which again I feel is a true testament to the solid design of the class itself. I have the impression that what you are communicating is "If it's not broken don't fix it" and if that is the case, you are not wrong, if we take into account all the other possibilities of classes or power-sets I would agree SoA ( and veats in general) are in a solid place. Especially considering how little comparatively they have required tweaks and changes over the years since implementation. It is a small dev team, I myself am entirely ignorant as to the time and resources it takes to implement any type of change behind the scenes, so yes if considering or looking at possible changes with a class that is pretty solid in it's current state  starves higher priority projects then naturally as a member of this great community I would rather see efforts and time placed on higher priority projects.

 

I also totally agree that Heats take the crown for slot starvation. When going for that min/max build style many different AT/Power sets will feel slot starved but HEATs for sure are on a whole other level ( and part of the fun of building them imo).

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34 minutes ago, Plutoria said:

to think of minor adjustments that might have been able to provide a slightly smoother experience for a inexperienced player or someone new to using SoA

Here's the thing. VEATs and HEATs are not and were never meant to be used by inexperienced players. I think it was SCORE after shut down on their private server that took away the gating to access VEATs and HEATs. They were supposed to be fielded by players that already understood the game and so would either find the added challenge (HEATs at the time) desirable or wanted to tackle something new (VEATs). In order to unlock them, you had to have at least one character you got to level 50. Well, that requirement was taken away, but that was because all the players on the private, pirate server the game was being played on was already experienced at the game and the server operators didn't want to make them wait to unlock the ATs in order to play the characters they already had back on Live. (I should also point out that VEATs are not support ATs any more than HEATs are. They are what you make them ATs.)

 

39 minutes ago, Plutoria said:

I have the impression that what you are communicating is "If it's not broken don't fix it"

No, my take is the VEATs are already extremely capable ATs and there is no reason to make them better than they already are. There is a difference between a quality of life change and making something more powerful. (Yes, I'm not particularly happy with Omega Maneuver for its damage output, but mine isn't slotted with anything yet. And it still proves quite useful. What other nuke in the game distracts your enemies into gathering at the nuke and wasting attacks on it until it finally explodes?)

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Omega Maneuver should get scrapped and get replaced with a pet buff.  +def/dmg/resist.  call it Omega Maneuvers

 

Banes are just so horribly horrible.  long animations, low base damage on ranged attacks and few single target melee attacks for a decent chain.  and for some reason less survivable than crabs.  resists, defense, etc.  also mini/partial crits while not in hide will help

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2 minutes ago, kelika2 said:

Omega Maneuver should get scrapped and get replaced with a pet buff.  +def/dmg/resist.  call it Omega Maneuvers

 

Banes are just so horribly horrible.  long animations, low base damage on ranged attacks and few single target melee attacks for a decent chain.  and for some reason less survivable than crabs.  resists, defense, etc.  also mini/partial crits while not in hide will help

Crabs are the tanks/walking SWAT teams. Why wouldn't they have better ability to soak hits?

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I've never had a survivability issue with the red side Veats. 

They are much easier to play than their blue side counterparts

I'd like the red side veat inherents improved though

the only issue I have with both red side veats is end based.

Right now the issue is solvable with incarnates and or smart playing 🙂 

Its easy to criticize a suggestion but can you suggest an alternative?

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Honestly, the only (play/mechanical, don't get me into their storyline) issue I have with VEATs is the blasted forced respec at 24. It's *exceptionally* annoying to me and often has me looking for any other option that fits a character concept.

Primarily on Everlasting. Squid afficionado. Former creator of Copypastas. General smartalec.

 

I tried to combine Circle and DE, but all I got were garden variety evil mages.

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I do kinda wish VEATs got to choose between the brute or stalker APPs/PPPs. Banes are the closest we'll get to a War Mace stalker, and Black Scorpion's PPP feels so thematic. But instead of getting a sniper beam they get a duplicate of Shatter that does -res?

 

Also, it feels a bit bad that the PPP mace beams so drastically outdamage their core kit.

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Body Mastery (Superior Conditioning + Physical Perfection) would be nice for QOL on builds that want to stack leadership toggles (extra blue bar sustain). And they'd also improve green bar sustain too if you slot them with Power Transfer, so double whammy.

 

The pool fits their theme perfectly, being pretty much an extension of their inherent trait Conditioning. 

Edited by FupDup

Closed Beta Discord Invite: https://discord.gg/DptUBzh

 

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