I'm now finding myself with a little more time to spend on the module. I have a long list of edits and changes, but I want to solicit ideas.
Someone just messaged me about a problem with Caco, and I know of at least two Paragon spells need some fixing. I'd like a sense of what is important to people from a balancing perspective, and quality-of-life.
One thing of some concern is the proliferation of two-hander builds. While I'm wary of ever-evolving class balance clashes creating an upwards power spiral, I also don't want to make areas noticeably harder to clear. That means that reducing the two-hander bonus is probably not a great solution. I'm interested in ideas to address this.
More broadly, I'm also interested in ideas to buff one-handers in general, and battle bards in particular.
I also know that there's an issue with abyss tagging, which I will be looking at.
All thoughts welcome. If you're planning to go all war-and-peace on a single topic, however, might be better to start a new thread and link it. I'm happy to look at older threads as long as you contextualize them and explain what, if anything, has changed since it was posted.
What's the problem with caco? If you make it more palatable, and make 1h+shield more competitive for rich lvl 70-80s then battlebards don't have that many issues. Only things I can think about is having too few attacks without harper splash and Illusory Army summons doing more dps than the summoner.
- The Magic Weapon spell, when cast by a Bard on themselves, now grants you a damage bonus equal to the average of your Dexterity and Charisma modifiers with melee weapons, minus your current Strength modifier, for one turn per casterlevel (the bonus will never be negative). This will show up in !effects as Magic Fang. This bonus does not stack with Divine Might.
You really want to splash bg/paladin on a battlebard, and go rapier wit/high cha for good auras, so that spell is only useful on the weak dex-based ones I suppose you want to buff a bit. You could give bards concealment a 5% bonus when nothing in the offhand/dualwielding and open more build choices.
Also, there was Acaos talking about adding legendary or paragon dual wielding feats (requiring HIGH dex score) for more attacks, that would help lessen the harper ''requirement'' / give choices.
2 handers: I was (the?) one voicing for a buff for the heavy armored + big sword grunt type but paragon levels made monk splash VERY rewarding (ac from dex/wis scaling to interesting values even for str based guys). So you see mostly monk splashed 2 handers who want to get enough ac and dish great damage. After the first 2h update you had to nerf staffmasters/staffmonks and a bit barbs due to them getting too high damage while not giving up defense with the result that the staff users disappeared from radars, but we're in the same situation now. I think toning down 2h damage to +20% if you receive wisdom ac from any source (the same restriction on divine shield) would make people appreciate different builds without being too harsh. Oh, and I have 4 (5 with a reinc) level 80 endgame toons who'd be nerfed by this, so no pity for moaners!
Limbo style worse inflictions based on base armor type being extended to more areas would also be nice, but more work I bet.
Some (quick?) class edit in topics that keep being resurrected:
Dwarven Defender NEEDS +1 CON every 5 levels. To unlock those DR feats, and not envy barbs/rangers who already got it. Barbs for the same respon I'm advocating I guess (rage/dr feats), rangers because they're the poster child of freebies (no seriously why CON on rangers, when they even lowered the class HD from d10 to d8 in next editions /rant).
Buff a bit that +12 shield AC that was balanced for when Pentavite was the best shield in the module as well; if better dualwielding feats get in, that'd be less necessary tho.
Bonus damage for large toons: large races are bad (-1ac/ab due to size, and most of them have base half orc + low dex on top of that limiting build options even more) and xdd builds also disappeared. Laser's last suggestion is tempting highergroundpoa.proboards.com/thread/25155/huge-weapons but huge weapons could use some solid buff. Not crit-range related only, because that would be useless against many valuable targets. +%damage, or double dmg types better.
Druids needs some better aoe damage spells: the Vinemine ones are bugged in that they do not receive Lore boost to damage (despite description saying the opposite, and Lore being necessary for any decent damage anyway). Ice Storm/Flame Strike/Firestorm deal too little damage due to mixed damage types (even vs the rare stuff that takes both types of damage well, it still has to go through double the DR); if you don't want to remove the double damage type due to iconic/pnp sources, improve the dices on such spells. Planar Perinarch is still not working at all.
Cleric Domains: they are an aspect of the game pretty much ignored here, but unlocking some more (already existing) spells could favor build diversity by a lot; atm all decent caster clerics select the same schools and play the same, a shame no? Lmk if you are interested, could write down some domain spells list (up to level 7 probably, and keeping the vanilla ones where already present). Also, Good alligned clerics could use something unique, because Heartbane introduction made Evil the way to go.
Double weapons. Not sure everyone remembers, at one time they added 2 extra attacks per round, and they were used by a vast majority of melee characters. When the bonus attacks were removed, the vast majority stopped using them. I am in total agreement that in the current system, if not using a two handed weapon, you are less effective than those that are using a two handed weapon. A change is needed to promote diversity in builds, but the changes made should not completely kill using a two handed weapon like what happened to double weapons in the past.
Bards. I have the opposite opinion, I think there is a need to make them better spell casters. In particular their spell slot equipment sucks for number and level of spell slots, level 6 bard spell slots should not be equal to level 9 spell slots for other casters when it comes to quantity on an item. I think bards should receive a multiplier like sorcerers get as well. Shadow spells should also have a lore adjustment.
Caster Level Egos. For level 60+ characters, CL ego items for Paladins, Blackguards, Rangers, and Assassins are practically useless. If no changes are made to them, they should be removed.
Abyss. I do not like to exploit/cheat, every time we do Shed, that happens because of the wand from Demo is also given. I would prefer this fix to be done before anything else.
In terms of paragon areas, I think the single largest priority is to significantly improve the incentive to complete Limbo Part 2. The run is much harder, far more time-consuming and generally quite cumbersome (though this last point will be partially addressed by the Ring Pedestal change), yet doesn't offer a notably better return on investment than Part 1.
This is why the 'meta' of farming canopics is to just pepper the same low-man P1's over and over again without touching P2 - this is more or less the root cause of my getting bored of the game. Contrast this with Aboleths (the closest parallel to 'run style'), where Abo2 is the 'desirable' run and Abo1 is primarily completed for the sole purpose of acquiring the key to Abo2.
Possible ways to improve P2's rewards could including having a larger number of stronger sets (note that most P2 sets are broken) and having more canopics dropping from spawns and bosses; given identical groups, P2 should yield significantly more canopics per hour than P1 does, to account for the increased difficulty and time investment. Other suggestions could be the P2 (Hard) tag granting access to XR-tier subraces and/or 1-2 UR augmenter chests spawning after killing the final P2 boss.
Also: Several of the P2 maps have very laggy animations (notably the 'Reverse Gravity'-style vibrations and Storm Towers) which can be irritating for many players since we have to constantly reload the client to prevent rubber-banding.
One handers All Shields could use additional physical immunity (5-10% ish) - making shield and board tougher. Maybe a few easy to acquire shields could have cl 50 divine power, optimizing non-monk splash builds. I wonder if one handers should have higher AB than two handers. (it's easy to hit with a small weapon)
Shields could halve vulnerability inflictions and/or kickback damage.
Dual Wield Dual wielding (two weapons) needs at least one additional attack (and to lose it's ab penalty) to be viable.
Bards I'd say that both battle bards and caster bards need help. To help the melee ones, some spells should add on hit effects like sonic or physical vulnerability. Maybe a few touch spells could be improved. On the other hand Caster Bards suffer from mediocre dc. I'd go with removing spell resistance to all their spells (so they have an unique niche).
Other ideas Well there's always stuff on Class Buffs Brainstorm AA, xDD, Purple Dragon, GI and Stormlord really need some love - all of them got even less loved since the two handed weapon rise in popularity.
As of quality of life changes - I'd remove Strong Shape's impractical shield usage and make the larger size more resistant to damage instead (str mod Phy imm %). The other quality of life issue I see is the varied Favored Enemy bugs (which level you pick it matters and is not pick-able in LL). I'm not sure what kind of change is feasible.
From a !DMcall perspective: Fix Elanna Nightstar accomplishment not working half the time. Ruinswarm not dropping the key in the Hive Kyrinith Frostfang the huge dragon on the last Elysium map that likes to despawn or land in the water where you can't reach him.
This! Or perhaps give ranged weapon users some love in general? They were left behind on every major update since July of 2011 (and I mention that only because of Slinger bullet change). For instance: - introduce craftable slightly "prebuffed" (as I explained here ) ammo boxes - give bows and xbows a portion of 2h bonus (say 20%) - adjust crit ranges and multipliers to match melee (e.g. longbow gets 19-20/x3 as large martial weapon, throwing axe gets 20/x4 to match battle axe etc.)
Yeah, looks like u can cs anythin non crit imm. - Big Crit