School of Enchantment

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Home Forums Age of Wonders 3 Discussions Balance Suggestions School of Enchantment

This topic contains 24 replies, has 12 voices, and was last updated by  chrysophylax páuperem 6 years, 7 months ago.

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  • #232487

    ExNihil
    Member

    Hi,

    I had a conversation with @kireruad in steam a while back and there he suggested something I was against, naturally, at first. But after thinking on it for a while I want to lobby for this here: I want school of enchantment to be officially changed. I think its a crappy tech, it makes Sorcerer a very two-dimensional class, not interesting and quite OP, it reaches its maximal strength too soon, and then it gets stuck. So what he suggested and I support is to replace Inflict Stun with Inflict Dazzled. I want to add to think a second component, the Fast Learner trait to Apprentices, or a minor version of it.

    Why would this be good? Well it will make sorcerer more interesting first and foremost. Better synergies and stuff. Sure it will require some work etc. Please write your input.

    #232501

    NINJEW
    Member

    school of enchantment does make sorcerer very uninteresting, because stuns are kind of not a very fun mechanic to play against en mass.

    replacing stun with daze isn’t really much better. i’d rather move away from the “can effectively remove another unit from the fight for a turn” type of ability, though at that point it’s probably too much work to justify. perhaps this is the kind of thing for the realm of mods.

    one advantage of daze over stun is that it’s way easier to get spirit resistance than shock resistance, which means there’s an actual counter for that ability beyond “play elves or hope you get a dreadnought hero.” unlike blight however, spirit doesn’t really have a ton of resistance so much as a lot of immunity, which would probably make sorcs constantly bounce between totally overpowering and totally impotent. so yeah, needs work.

    #232508

    ex nihil said “dazzled”, which is the property that prevents a unit from retaliating when struck in melee.

    It is an interesting jumping off point, but runs into some problems. One is that the sorcs whole class is around maximizing shock damage, so to put a core ability on the spirit channel is fairly odd. It will also make the storm sister just preposterous, as it gets old and new school of enchantment with total awareness….

    On the other hand, a dazzle like ability based on illusions (since it is a school of enchantment) that used the shock damage channel and caused either no retaliations or a minor loss of mp for several turns would be very interesting. A lesser mp reduction would essentially merge with the storm sisters more powerful stun/the freeze on the Frost queen, so that would be good to avoid opness.

    It would make the sorc a sort of chess like positional player, making zones safe for phase/floating units and their supports to come in.

    #232513

    NINJEW
    Member

    ah, my mistake

    #232543

    Taykor
    Member

    Well, current School of Enchanment is not really interesting, and it is irritating as everyone likes to say “you have stuns, you don’t need anything else”. Even when it was nerfed several times already.
    But the problem is, sorc just needs SoE now, all its balance is built on this stupid thing, remove it – and you need to substantially buff sorc in other places. This could be more fun, but it’s a lot more than just ‘let’s replace stuns with dazzled’. I doubt devs would make such changes now. And I’m not sure what they could be. Well, probably making some summons cheaper in CP and stronger, plus adding some strategic upgrade to economics or army could help.

    #232556

    ExNihil
    Member

    It is an interesting jumping off point, but runs into some problems. One is that the sorcs whole class is around maximizing shock damage, so to put a core ability on the spirit channel is fairly odd.

    Yes,

    But the simple fix for this is simply to switch Inflict Dazzle itself from Spirit to Shock – this wouldn’t take the devs more then 3 minutes of work. This really wouldn’t hurt Halflings at all – it would actually improve them, since there are fewer shock resistant units in the game then spirit resistant ones. And I don’t really see why fire works should work vs. the Spirit channel to begin with :).

    As for your words regarding storm sisters – I refer you to my discussion in the racial balancing thread on HE, IMO, high elves actually have a serious synergy problem currently with sorcerer, and this will resolve it. Humans have, weirdly, a better synergy. Draconians and Frostlings also have a better synergy. Even Goblins have a better synergy. Etc.

    #232561

    Garresh
    Member

    An interesting proposal. I like it.

    #232634

    An interesting proposal. I like it.

    Interesting, but seems like a lot of work for a game relatively late in its life. If TS is willing to work with this it could make Sorc more interesting.

    #232654

    Kireruad
    Member

    Ok can someone explain to me why exactly dazzle needs to be changed to shock damage channel other than it being slightly “odd” …?

    (though one could say that “school of enchantment” revolving around electrically shocking someone instead of actually dazzling and enchanting them might be kinda odd itself)

    Inflict shocking boosts the shock damage delivered by many of the classes summons and spells, why does this ability need to work with a widely available weakening ability to increase its effectiveness? Do theocrat units have lots of weakening options on their units to increase conversion success or spirit damage for example? TBH sorcerers shocking is pretty privileged ability when u look at the base classes that have specific elemental associations – except necromancer which can buff its damage with inflict despair, but that isn’t quite as ubiquitous as inflict shocking is on sorc units

    sure specific races like goblin can weaken to enhance racial focuses, but we are talking about classes here. Why does this ability need to work in the shock channel, sorcerers already have it as a passive on most of your summons attacks so why does this ability need to be buffed by that?

    TBH the point of it would be to dazzle the enemy so the summons could go in and inflict the shocking etc, everything doesn’t have to stack – if anything piling on is what has caused some of the issues with sorc to begin with imo.

    If it is left as is this is a very ez modification that can be part of a player made MP balance mod. – which was the original idea (on top of making school of enchantment actually having something to do with ‘enchanting”)

    #232661

    llfoso
    Member

    Yeah, I like this. Not necessarily dazzled though- There are a few decent candidates for debuffs out there. It would be nice to be able to buff sorcerers in other dimensions by nerfing this.

    #232662

    Griffith
    Member

    I’m not entirely opposed to this inflict dazzle idea, but it would be a heavy nerf. Other option I discussed earlier is to make school of enchantment just give a steady damage bonus. Or could make inflict stun drain 8 mp on each proc (with slightly better proc chance). Or a combination of these.

    But I’m not against nerfing school of enchantment a bit in general. Then there would be good reason to add a new buildable T3 for sorc. 🙂

    #232664

    Inflict shocking boosts the shock damage delivered by many of the classes summons and spells, why does this ability need to work with a widely available weakening ability to increase its effectiveness? Do theocrat units have lots of weakening options on their units to increase conversion success or spirit damage for example?

    inflict spirit breaking is fairly common, and they also have heretic, so I don’t think that they lack in ways to damage boost.

    Anyway, the point was just that you don’t really want to go too far in the other direction. Most of the other classes are plenty powerful, even if the Sorc is still top tier. Any nerf ought to be calibrated so that it doesn’t reduce the power too much and so it integrates with the rest of the sorc line up.

    As the devs aren’t going to do this (too much impact on game balance, unpredictable, etc), I think that an mp balance mod is a good idea. With a little more flexibility (free labor, optional, etc), I think a minor mp drain effect of 1/3 at success would be the best option.

    So a perfect shot (three successful checks) would strand a unit in place, but still let it guard or shoot back once.

    That would also give the ability some utility for machine fighting.

    #232713

    Kireruad
    Member

    inflict spirit breaking is pretty common on the theo tech tree? I need to look harder I guess. The most common appearance of that ability in MP seems to be actually in the druid tech tree when ancestral spirits are summoned in a battle.

    Heretic is +3 in one damage channel, and is much more unwieldy in MP games that a passive ability on the majority of your summons. Even then You cant even compare the two in utility really, I’m not sure if your appreciating just how important positioning and movement points are on the tactical map in a MP game. It sounds like u want to go from mass supports stunning people in place to mass supports draining MP. Either way the point I think is to move away from the mass support silliness.

    Why isn’t dazzled enough, now u want to be able to drain a units entire MP from a passive attack that is easily spam able at range? See the problem is that in this case it would be not going far enough. All classes should be in the same ballpark there should be no desire to make sorc top tier or have it remain “top tier” there really should be no top tier. I think that is the crux of the issue. Come realize we are talking about an ability that when used in mass basically makes people not want to play. Is it the only feature in the game that incites high levels of annoyance and weak-minded and boring play-styles? No. But it is definitely “top tier” in that regard 🙂

    and BTW you currently can win games with sorc without leveling school of enchant on purpose – the class is still extremely strong. True story.

    #232719

    May I ask what the effect (s) would be if it were inflict shocking, not stun?

    – 8 movement + 40% shock weakness could be considered enough of an edge to win an otherwise lopsided or equal odds battle.

    If it has a higher proc chance, it means Sorcerors can kite to a degree, as they can rely on it more.

    It keeps things logical in the sense that it works on the shock channel

    It has inbuilt synergy with Sorc shock damage, e.g. chain lightning (and every orc summon but Watchers I believe?===> @ Ex, this would immediately make Node Serpents incredinly useful as Flankers. Pair them with Supports whihc slow and weaken the enemy, then hit them with NS which are naturally fast, and against a shocked enemy would be comparatively extremely fast, and hit very hard). One could use a few Support units to shock the opponents army, reducing their mp and then just pinging them from range, and then finishing them all off with chainlightning.

    It could conceivably be as useful as the current school of enchantment, but allows a degree of counterplay, and requires a bit more skill on behalf of the Sorceror==> ergo more interesting, imho.

    #232755

    ExNihil
    Member

    hmm, shocking is is there on star blades so there will be redundancy. Can be solved by changing it, but its a complex change.

    I dislike inflict stun cuz its both borderline OP, sort of boring and doesn’t require any kind of thinking to actually use. Sorcerer could really be improved by addressing this tech, which is its main problem IMO – I hope the devs will do something about it, since it really makes Socerer sort of two dimensional.

    Also another problem for me, maybe only for me but still, all support units get what apprentices get so there really isn’t much point of building these with most races. Unless you are playing a race that has a crappy attack and need the triple channel attack (which is actually quite weak often times!) you are better off with racial supports which are cheaper to build and offer a better set of skills usually. compare what forge priests, mystics or white witches offer and really apprentices look like a crappy deal.

    What I’d like is for the Sorcerer techs to be restricted to some extent to apprentices – maybe its just me. I certainly would like apprentices to be better, or cheaper, or to level quicker – getting them to float is very difficult :). And building them with this in view has proven a bad idea, at least for me.

    What do you guys think?

    #232763

    Heretic is +3 in one damage channel, and is much more unwieldy in MP games that a passive ability on the majority of your summons. Even then You cant even compare the two in utility really, I’m not sure if your appreciating just how important positioning and movement points are on the tactical map in a MP game. It sounds like u want to go from mass supports stunning people in place to mass supports draining MP. Either way the point I think is to move away from the mass support silliness.

    I am quite aware of the importance of positioning, thank you very much! Griffith is an mp player and had a similar idea, so I don’t think there is any need for condescension here.

    There are two sets of balance considerations at issue: intra-class balance, and inter-class balance. Inter class balance is very good right now, as almost all the classes have particular maps and play settings where they are at an advantage. So we don’t really want to make that many changes, especially as the devs are on a cheese hunt.

    Indeed, as we speak, settler spam has been addressed with a no rush rule for settlers and a 50 gold cost increase, and the entangle xp boondoggle got some attention.

    Intra-class balance, on the other hand, is about how many of the different elements of the class become useful to use either throughout the whole game or at various points. Support stun spam is a problem because it is kind of boring and effective without requiring nuance to use.

    #232812

    Griffith
    Member

    May I ask what the effect (s) would be if it were inflict shocking, not stun?

    – 8 movement + 40% shock weakness could be considered enough of an edge to win an otherwise lopsided or equal odds battle.

    Inflict shocking seems bad cause of the 40% shock weakness. Every1 would start to play elf sorcerer then. If there needs to be some inflict ability, I support the idea chrysophylax also suggested, that reduce 1/3 of mp. Maybe could could give the regular stun effect after 3 stacks?

    Also another problem for me, maybe only for me but still, all support units get what apprentices get so there really isn’t much point of building these with most races. Unless you are playing a race that has a crappy attack and need the triple channel attack (which is actually quite weak often times!) you are better off with racial supports which are cheaper to build and offer a better set of skills usually. compare what forge priests, mystics or white witches offer and really apprentices look like a crappy deal.

    What I’d like is for the Sorcerer techs to be restricted to some extent to apprentices – maybe its just me.

    Apprentices are actually pretty good imho. They have more hitpoints and damage than racial supports, and steal enchantment and dispell can come in handy. You can also use specific strategies with them, like using seeker for their triple channel attacks, or make a strong (self healing) creeping party when combined with some summons.

    Sure some racial supports have some funky abilities too, but thats why its good to have both options available for sorc. If you make apprentice too strong, people wouldnt make racial supports anymore. And this would be sad, cause sorc dont have much to choose from to begin with. That is: not many good choices.

    #232851

    llfoso
    Member

    The more I think about it, it seems dazzle is the best option after all.

    #232928

    Zaskow
    Member

    Lol.
    Inflict Dazzled is faaaaaaaaaar more weaker ability, than Inflict Stun. OFC, If you want to nerf Sorc to the ground, you’re welcome.

    #232980

    May I ask what the effect (s) would be if it were inflict shocking, not stun?

    – 8 movement + 40% shock weakness could be considered enough of an edge to win an otherwise lopsided or equal odds battle.

    Inflict shocking seems bad cause of the 40% shock weakness. Every1 would start to play elf sorcerer then. If there needs to be some inflict ability, I support the idea chrysophylax also suggested, that reduce 1/3 of mp. Maybe could could give the regular stun effect after 3 stacks?

    I agree, perhaps an ability that inflicted -2 resistance would be better.

    Also another problem for me, maybe only for me but still, all support units get what apprentices get so there really isn’t much point of building these with most races. Unless you are playing a race that has a crappy attack and need the triple channel attack (which is actually quite weak often times!) you are better off with racial supports which are cheaper to build and offer a better set of skills usually. compare what forge priests, mystics or white witches offer and really apprentices look like a crappy deal.

    What I’d like is for the Sorcerer techs to be restricted to some extent to apprentices – maybe its just me.

    Apprentices are actually pretty good imho. They have more hitpoints and damage than racial supports, and steal enchantment and dispell can come in handy. You can also use specific strategies with them, like using seeker for their triple channel attacks, or make a strong (self healing) creeping party when combined with some summons.

    Sure some racial supports have some funky abilities too, but thats why its good to have both options available for sorc. If you make apprentice too strong, people wouldnt make racial supports anymore. And this would be sad, cause sorc dont have much to choose from to begin with. That is: not many good choices.

    [/quote]
    For the record, all supports to my knowledge get dispel on bronze. Racial supports also start with an ability that’s usually more generally useful than steal enchantment (e.g. throw curse, guarded by flames, iron heart). Their main advantages are stats and that they get floating on gold, so you can get an entire stack of floating/flying units (later on in the game you can make it entirely invisible).

    Zaskow

    Member

    Lol.
    Inflict Dazzled is faaaaaaaaaar more weaker ability, than Inflict Stun. OFC, If you want to nerf Sorc to the ground, you’re welcome.

    I agree it is weaker, but the point is that Sorc could be buffed in other ways to make it less dependent on stunning supports.

    #233144

    Hatmage
    Member

    What I’d go for is a two part inflict ability on the physical channel (because incorporeal has always been a counter to school of enchantment and that shouldn’t change), with the first part being a high strength chance to inflict “dazzle” plus a minor movement and attack penalty on the target say -6mp, -1 strength to the first channel, -1 strength to all channels (these can be made a single physical effect group a la immolate with mod tools).

    The second part would only have a chance to affect targets already Staggered/Stricken/Hexed/whatever we want to call the first effect (and perhaps also machines and/or summoned & magical beings – see below), having a weak – strength 5 or less – chance to stun them outright. This gives an interesting tradeoff between spreading debuffs around as much as possible and focus-firing in hopes of an actual stun, and lets single-shot archers like musketeers and crossbowmen act as a decent soft counter to enchanters – though the sorcerer may then need a new means of fighting very powerful single shot units like dragons, cannons et cetera – and removes storm sister antisynergy with sorcery (though elves have plenty of synergy with sorcery in everything other than supports).

    As for the other annoying multistun attack, mass stasis, I’d remove it outright and replace it with some sort of mass buff for friendly units of magical origin.

    #233303

    Taykor
    Member

    As for the other annoying multistun attack, mass stasis, I’d remove it outright and replace it with some sort of mass buff for friendly units of magical origin.

    It’s not a multistun attack, it’s a multiroot attack. There’s a difference.

    #233375

    Garresh
    Member

    A silly idea…

    The mod tools support random additional effects on abilities. What if it randomly applied one of: Chilled, immolation, shocking. Sorcs have triple channel attacks on apprentices and do have multi channel enchantments with star blades, not to mention cosmic spray or whatever its called. It also requires no changing of channels or new assets requiring translation. Its also a lot more fun potentially. Meh

    #233377

    Not a silly idea at all.

    Didn’t Chrys do something similar with his Fairy Dragon, I.e. random inflict?

    #233507

    A silly idea…

    The mod tools support random additional effects on abilities. What if it randomly applied one of: Chilled, immolation, shocking. Sorcs have triple channel attacks on apprentices and do have multi channel enchantments with star blades, not to mention cosmic spray or whatever its called. It also requires no changing of channels or new assets requiring translation. Its also a lot more fun potentially. Meh

    I did, random inflicts are a lot of fun. Indeed, one could make each apprentice slightly different simply by giving a second copy of the appropriate inflict, so it would be more likely to be applied.

    So draconians could have immolation, immolation, chilled, shocking. High elves could have shocking, shocking, immolation, chilled. Frostlings chilled chilled, and so forth.

    You could even make it two random inflicts, just for the sake of ability power.

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