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Class Balancing - Sacrier

By [Ankama]DOFUS-Prod - ANKAMA - February 27, 2020, 16:00:00
AnkaTracker
Hey there!

As promised, here's a complete overview of the changes in the works for the Sacrier class. We'll start with the main issues and mechanics, and end with a detailed list of spells.
  • Bleeding:
    • The Bleeding mechanic has been removed.
      • As I'd explained in one of my recent posts, this mechanic was initially created to allow the Mutilation and Coagulation spells to function. It had seemed interesting because it made it possible to store damage suffered independently of changes in Suffering, and I had, therefore, started extending it to other spells. Over time, however, it became clear that this mechanic was incomplete. It seemed to be both important and at the same time under-utilized by spells. In the suggestions we examined together last time, I was, therefore, envisaging extending the mechanic to more spells to make it truly interesting.
      • After careful reflection, however, we ultimately decided to remove this mechanic to place more emphasis on Suffering. It adds a layer of complexity to the class whereas we want to keep the Sacrier class among the simplest classes to understand and play.
      • Suffering is central to this overhaul, but Bleeding was overshadowing it without strengthening the class's berserker whimsy. With Bleeding, spell descriptions lose readability; it adds a state above the character that makes fights harder to follow and is sometimes confused with Suffering. Ultimately, this mechanic seems very artificial to me and doesn't add any more gameplay possibilities than better use of Suffering would. Developing the mechanic further would have been acceptable, but as I said above, it would have come at the risk of making the class unnecessarily complex.
      • The 10 spells that use Bleeding have therefore been adjusted accordingly, and you'll quickly realize that losing this mechanic in no way amounts to nerfing the class or taking away its fun.
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  • Positioning/Movement Spells: 
    • We had mentioned the idea of connecting positioning/movement utility spells to the Bleeding mechanic. Since it is being removed in this iteration I, therefore, propose to connect these spells to Suffering. In this way, Suffering takes on even more importance in the class's gameplay because an increase in mobility is added to tanking and damage when a Sacrier's Suffering is high, and all three of the class's roles are now linked to its main mechanic, which also increases coherence and whimsy.
    • Quite simply, the idea is to increase spells' range or movement distance as Suffering increases. For that to work, these spells' range becomes non-modifiable. You no longer need to optimize your Range in addition to everything else: Suffering takes care of that for you.
    • In terms of equipment optimization, it's a pure buff, but it is also a nerf and a buff in fights themselves: The range of these spells can no longer be increased via Range bonuses nor reduced by Range penalties, and only Suffering and the various states (Gravity, Unmovable, etc.) will constrain their use. In order to balance the values, since it's an overall boost, I took into account these spells' maximum range with a bonus of 5 Range (the maximum attainable with equipment) and I divided this value in two to obtain the new maximum non-modifiable ranges. As you'll see in the spells themselves, the Range and movement distance increases work by threshold, and so it is no longer necessary to be at Suffering 10 to start to take advantage of very interesting positioning abilities.
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  • The Berserk Spells (Nervousness, Immolation, Decimation, etc.): 
    • As planned, here are the changes to the 3- and 4-AP Berserk spells:
      • Spells at 3 AP: Damage is increased, and the damage increase now follows exactly the same evolution as Suffering, so you can now more rapidly enjoy good damage for longer.
      • Spells at 4 AP: The elemental damage formerly inflicted on the caster now becomes a loss of HP as a % of their current health. This % penalty no longer diminishes as the caster's Suffering increases, but it is as if it did because the caster's current HP drop with Suffering.
        • As a reminder, this shift to a HP % penalty makes it possible to no longer need to invest in fixed resistances and % of one's own element, to play any shield without it increasing or reducing the penalty, and of course to stop eroding oneself.
    • Finally, we will not disassociate the 3-AP spells from their 4-AP variants to allow both to be played simultaneously. This is the main interest of bi-element (and +) play – to be able to use the two mechanics at the same time by using 4-AP spells at the start of a fight to rapidly bring down one's HP, and then switch to 3-AP spells once the damage-to-AP ratios become interesting enough.
    • As a reminder, each path can play 4 spells simultaneously, along with one spell in the best element, and so there isn't any "gap" to fill. Many classes get by very well with four elemental spells. The problem therefore isn't with the number of spells but with the general way the class operates, and that is what we are trying to fix with all the changes you're reading today.
    • Regarding the Earth and Air spells, we ultimately decided to modify the areas of effect for Decimation and Carnage. We did not want to add additional mechanics, whether in the utility effects or a specific way of applying damage, because that would have been very artificial and would have made the "right" spell unnecessarily complex to create a slight difference. I therefore think that the area of effect is the best compromise because you'll have the choice, if you're playing an Earth/Air mode, of the following combinations:
      • Decimation + Fury: 1 spell that evolves with Suffering, lower damage but in an area of effect + 1 spell that evolves with Suffering, higher damage but on a single target.
      • Decimation + Carnage: 1 spell that evolves with Suffering, lower damage but in an area of effect + 1 spell with stable damage, lower but in an area of effect.
      • Gash + Fury: 1 spell with stable damage, higher but single target + 1 spell that evolves with Suffering, higher damage but on a single target.
      • Gash + Carnage: 1 spell with stable and higher damage but on a single target + 1 spell with stable damage, lower but on an area of effect.
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  • Erosion:
    • As we've seen, more spells are linked to Suffering, which also means that they become more sensitive to erosion. Luckily, several improvements have been made that will let you mitigate this weakness. In any case, erosion will remain the main counter for Sacriers, but it won't completely cancel out their passive and therefore their capacities.
      • The shift from self-mutilation damage to infinite HP % penalty means that they won't apply natural and non-natural erosion on you anymore, and will also let you increase Suffering even if you are eroded.
      • The new spell, Libation, which replaces Coagulation, and the new ways that the Blood Pact and Berserk spells work. These spells will let you, like with the 4-AP berserk spells, increase your Suffering independently of erosion suffered, and above all more quickly than the berserk spells. Thus, for example, if you need to gain 2 Range on your Transposition to go and strike an opponent or bring an ally home, these spells will let you do so immediately (but only occasionally, of course, because these spells keep the same recast intervals).
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  • Swords:
    • We had talked about adding Sword spells to let them interact in a new way with their summoner and vice versa. Ultimately, the decision was made to not add additional spells for the Swords but to add interactions with Sacrier spells so as to avoid making the Swords' turns more complicated and extend playing time. Once again, it's an "easy access" class, and the gameplay shouldn't come from summons but from the Sacrier themself.
    • We are therefore adding effects to the Sacrier spells that apply to Swords and now play with Suffering. Some effects apply to allies under similar conditions, but can therefore also affect Swords. This is probably one of the areas where we have the most room for improvement, but I think that you will probably like the effects already offered. If you have any ideas about interactions that we could add (without giving the class too much power), let us know and we'll discuss it. To fit properly, these interactions must come from the Sacrier, so no new spells on the Swords!
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Now I'll let you discover in detail the changes made to each spell, with additional explanations for some of them!

But before that, here's a short key to make it easier to follow:
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  • No change: The spell hasn't been changed.
  • NERF: The spell's power has been reduced.
  • BUFF/NERF: The spell's power has been increased, but the increase is offset by a nerf, a partial drop in efficiency, or an additional constraint.
  • BUFF: The spell's power has been increased.
  • MOD/BUFF: How the spell works has been changed; it is therefore hard to say whether its now less powerful or not, but it would tend to be more powerful.
  • MOD: How the spell works has been changed considerably or replaced with something new; it is therefore hard to say whether its now less powerful or not.
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  • Hemorrhage: No change
  • Desolation: No change
    • Last time there was no consensus on the observations and proposal(s), so no change has been made for now since the spell works well.
  • Nervousness: BUFF
    • How it works:
      • The evolution of damage is now aligned with that of Suffering.
    • Damage (Suffering 10):
      • +12.18%
        • Level 1: 19 to 21 (CH: 22 to 25) → 21 to 23 (CH: 25 to 28)
        • Level 67: 24 to 27 (CH: 29 to 33) → 27 to 30 (CH: 33 to 36)
        • Level 133: 31 to 35 (CH: 37 to 42) → 35 to 39 (CH: 42 to 47)
  • Clobbering: BUFF/NERF
    • BUFF How it works:
      • "The caster sacrifices some of their health points to inflict considerable Water damage in an area of effect."
      • The Water damage formerly inflicted on the caster has become a loss of HP as a % of health.
        • -10 HP (infinite)
    • NERF Damage (Suffering 10): 
      • -4.69% 
        • Level 100: 33 to 36 (CH: 39 to 43) → 31 to 35 (CH: 38 to 41)
        • Level 167: 41 to 45 (CH: 49 to 54) → 39 to 43 (CH: 47 to 52)
  • Attraction: BUFF/NERF
    •  How it works: 
      • "Pulls the target until adjacent. The spell's maximum range increases with the caster's Suffering."
        • Suffering 0: 3 / 5 / 7 Range
        • Suffering 1: 4 / 6 / 8 Range
        • Suffering 2: 4 / 6 / 8 Range
        • Suffering 3: 5 / 7 / 9 Range
        • Suffering 4: 5 / 7 / 9 Range
        • Suffering 5: 6 / 8 / 10 Range
        • Suffering 6: 6 / 8 / 10 Range
        • Suffering 7: 7 / 9 / 11 Range
        • Suffering 8: 7 / 9 / 11 Range
        • Suffering 9: 8 / 10 / 12 Range
        • Suffering 10: 8 / 10 / 12 Range
    •  Casting conditions: 
      • Maximum range: 5 / 7 / 9 → 3 / 5 / 7
      • Modifiable range: yes → no
  • Perfusion: BUFF/NERF
    • BUFF How it works:
      • The triggered heal value is increased at rank 2 and decreased at rank 1: 40%/40% → 30%/50%
    • NERF Casting Conditions:
      • Recast interval: 1 → 2
  • Blood Bath: NERF
    • How it works: 
      • The Lock bonus is reduced at ranks 1 and 2: 15 / 15 / 15 → 5 / 10 / 15
  • Torture: No change
  • Excruciating Pain: BUFF
    • How it works:
      • The evolution of damage is now aligned with that of Suffering.
    • Damage (Suffering 10):
      • +12.48%
        • Level 6: 18 to 20 (CH: 21 to 24) → 20 to 23 (CH: 24 to 27)
        • Level 71: 24 to 27 (CH: 29 to 33) → 27 to 30 (CH: 32 to 36)
        • Level 138: 30 to 34 (CH: 36 to 41) → 34 to 38 (CH: 41 to 46)
  • Immolation: BUFF/NERF
    • BUFF How it works:
      • "The caster sacrifices some of their health points to inflict considerable Fire damage in an area of effect."
      • The Fire damage formerly inflicted on the caster now becomes a loss of HP as a % of their health.
        • -10 HP (infinite)
    • NERF Damage (Suffering 10): 
      • -4.51%
        • Level 115: 36 to 39 (CH: 43 to 47) → 34 to 37 (CH: 41 to 45)
        • Level 182: 42 to 46 (CH: 50 to 55) → 40 to 44 (CH: 48 to 53)
  • Mutilation: MOD/BUFF
    • How it works:
      • How Mutilation and Coagulation work have been merged into a single spell.
      • "The caster inflicts 10% of their HP on themself to gain Power for 1 turn, and so on at the start of each turn as long as the spell is active. Casting the spell again stops its effects and applies Shield on the caster for 2 turns based on the number of turns in which Mutilation was active."
        • 10% of the caster's health (without elements, not reduced)
          • 1 turn: 200% of level as Shield (2 turns)
          • 2 turns: 400% of level as Shield (2 turns)
          • 3 turns: 600% of level as Shield (2 turns)
      • The Power bonus has been increased at rank 3: 50/100/150 → 50/150/200
  • Punishment: MOD/BUFF
    • How it works:
      • The loss of HP has become a loss of HP in % of the caster's health.
      • "The caster sacrifices 10% of their HP to reduce enemies' damage in the area of effect based on their Suffering and applies the Gravity state for 1 turn."
        • Suffering 0: damage reduced by 10%
        • Suffering 1: damage reduced by 12%
        • Suffering 2: damage reduced by 12%
        • Suffering 3: damage reduced by 14%
        • Suffering 4: damage reduced by 14%
        • Suffering 5: damage reduced by 16%
        • Suffering 6: damage reduced by 16%
        • Suffering 7: damage reduced by 18%
        • Suffering 8: damage reduced by 18%
        • Suffering 9: damage reduced by 20%
        • Suffering 10: damage reduced by 20%
    • Casting conditions: 
      • Maximum range: 0 → 3
  • Flying Sword: BUFF/NERF
    • Renamed Voracious Sword
    • BUFF How it works: 
      • "Summons a controllable sword that heals the caster when it inflicts damage."
      • The Flying Sword's MP have been increased: 3 → 4 MP
    • NERF Casting Conditions: 
      • Maximum range: 4 → 3
    • Cutting:
      • How it works:
        • Renamed Thirst for Blood
        • BUFF Neutral damage has become a Neutral health steal.
        • NERF The healing granted to the summoner now depends on the damage inflicted by the Sword.
      •  BUFF Casting conditions: 
        • AP cost: 3 → 2
        • Area of effect: single target
        • Maximum range: 1 → 2
        • Casts per target: 2 → 1
        • Casts per turn: 1 → 2
        • Target needed: yes → no
        • Forbidden states: Swift, Bloodthirsty, Robust → none
  • Dancing Sword:
    • How it works:
      • "Summons a controllable sword that attracts."
        • Swift Cutting Up:
          • Renamed Sword-Dance
  • Ravages: No change
  • Light Speed: No change
  • Assault: No change
  • Aversion: No change
  • Transposition: BUFF/NERF
    • BUFF How it works:
      • "Switches places with the target. The spell's maximum range increases with the caster's Suffering."
        • Suffering 0: 2 / 4 / 6 Range
        • Suffering 1: 2 / 4 / 6 Range
        • Suffering 2: 4 / 6 / 8 Range
        • Suffering 3: 4 / 6 / 8 Range
        • Suffering 4: 4 / 6 / 8 Range
        • Suffering 5: 7 / 9 / 11 Range
        • Suffering 6: 7 / 9 / 11 Range
        • Suffering 7: 7 / 9 / 11 Range
        • Suffering 8: 9 / 11 / 13 Range
        • Suffering 9: 9 / 11 / 13 Range
        • Suffering 10: 9 / 11 / 13 Range
    •  Casting conditions: 
      • Maximum range: 6 / 8 / 10 → 2 / 4 / 6
      • Modifiable range: yes → no
  • Fluctuation: BUFF
    • How it works:
      • "Applies the Unlockable state and increases the caster's MP for 1 turn based on their Suffering. If the caster is at Suffering 5 or more, their Swords gain 2 MP for 1 turn and also become Unlockable."
        • Suffering 0: 1 MP
        • Suffering 1: 1 MP
        • Suffering 2: 2 MP
        • Suffering 3: 2 MP
        • Suffering 4: 2 MP
        • Suffering 5: 3 MP
        • Suffering 6: 3 MP
        • Suffering 7: 3 MP
        • Suffering 8: 4 MP
        • Suffering 9: 4 MP
        • Suffering 10: 4 MP
  • Condensation: No change
  • Influx: No change
  • Hostility: BUFF
    • Slight buff for Hostility, which until now had been the weakest micro-positioning spell in the kit, especially compared to its variant, Projection.
    • Casting conditions: 
      • Maximum range: 1 → 2
      • Target needed: yes → no
  • Projection: NERF
    • It had currently been the best micro-positioning spell in the kit because it was very flexible in its use and offered its caster a lot of positioning/movement a bit too easily. I decided to preserve the lack of line of sight to maintain this ability to move behind obstacles, but did so while forcing Sacriers to get out of a lock or place an entity to move with if they are already in close combat with an enemy. In this way, it is a better match for the Water path, which was designed for distance.
    • How it works:
      • "Inflicts Water damage. The caster is teleported symmetrically relative to the target."
    • Casting conditions: 
      • Minimum range: 1 → 2
  • Thorn Crown: BUFF
    • Is now the variant of Pillory.
    • How it works:
      • "For 1 turn, the caster reduces damage suffered in close combat by 25% and reflects 25% of the damage they suffer in an area of effect around them. If the caster is at Suffering 5 or more, their allies 2 cells away or closer also benefit from Thorn Crown's effects."
  • Jashin Ritual:
    • Is now the variant of Berserk.
    • Acquisition levels: 
      • 155 → 195
  • Life Transfer: BUFF/NERF
    • Renamed Transfusion.
    • How it works:
      • "Transfers part of the caster's HP to allies in the area of effect. The caster performs a second HP transfer to allies in the Perfusion state."
  • Riposte: BUFF
    • How it works:
      • "Moves the caster closer to the target. For 1 turn, when the targeted enemy inflicts damage on the caster, the caster moves closer to their attacker. The spell's range increases with the caster's Suffering."
      • The approach distance is now 7 cells.
        • Suffering 0: 5 Range
        • Suffering 1: 5 Range
        • Suffering 2: 6 Range
        • Suffering 3: 6 Range
        • Suffering 4: 6 Range
        • Suffering 5: 7 Range
        • Suffering 6: 7 Range
        • Suffering 7: 7 Range
        • Suffering 8: 8 Range
        • Suffering 9: 8 Range
        • Suffering 10: 8 Range
  • Absorption: No change
  • Slaughter: No change
    • Last time there was no consensus on the observations and proposal(s), so no change has been made for now since the spell works well and isn't really an issue as it is.
  • Decimation: BUFF
    • How it works:
      • The evolution of damage is now aligned with that of Suffering.
    • Casting conditions: 
      • Area of effect: single target → orthogonal line of 1
    • Damage (Suffering 10):
      • +5.58%
        • Level 60: 25 to 28 (CH: 30 to 33) → 26 to 29 (CH: 31 to 35)
        • Level 127: 30 to 34 (CH: 36 to 41) → 32 to 36 (CH: 39 to 43)
        • Level 194: 34 to 38 (CH: 41 to 46) → 36 to 40 (CH: 43 to 48)
  • Gash: BUFF
    • How it works: 
      • "The caster sacrifices some of their health points to inflict considerable Earth damage."
      • The Earth damage formerly inflicted on the caster has become a loss of HP as a % of their health.
        • -10 HP (infinite)
    • Damage (Suffering 10): 
      • +4.12%
        • Level 170: 47 to 51 (CH: 56 to 61) → 49 to 53 (CH: 59 to 64)
  • Sacrifice: No change
    • No changes are planned for now. The issue of allies who don't have enough resistances in random Kolossium fights can arise and be bothersome, but it does not justify increasing the spell's power because that would also increase it for teams with much higher resistances and therefore make the spell too strong in many situations. The Sacrifice is used to protect an ally by using one's own health points in their place, so casting it when one's health is low is necessarily risky whether or not the ally has resistances.
      • There are other tools/spells available to protect not-very-tank-like allies:
        • Play Fire, with healing close combat, AbsorptionLife Transfer and Perfusion.
        • Use the dissuasive combo of Sacrifice + Jashin Ritual (+ Pillory and Perfusion if needed).
        • Positioning in general, by putting one's ally out of range of enemy blows with Penitence, Transposition, etc.
  • Penitence: No change
    • Here, we could consider adding a special effect on Swords to add an additional interaction, but only if we are not adding an effect that is already present in the class's kit and this effect is not too powerful so as to not overly buff the class. Once again, your ideas are welcome!
  • Fury: BUFF
    • How it works:
      • The evolution of damage is now aligned with that of Suffering.
    • Damage (Suffering 10):
      • +13.92%
        • Level 70: 27 to 30 (CH: 32 to 36) → 30 to 34 (CH: 36 to 40)
        • Level 137: 34 to 38 (CH: 41 to 46) → 39 to 43 (CH: 47 to 52)
  • Carnage: BUFF/NERF
    • BUFF How it works:
      • "The caster sacrifices some of their health points to inflict considerable Air damage in an area of effect. The progressive decrease in damage is greatly increased in the second and then third cell."
      • The Air damage formerly inflicted on the caster has become a loss of HP as a % of their health.
        • -10 HP (infinite)
    •  BUFF Casting conditions: 
      • Area of effect: single target → line of 3
    • NERF Damage (Suffering 10): 
      • -3.05%
        • Level 180: 47 to 51 (CH: 56 to 61) → 46 to 49 (CH: 55 to 59)
  • Stase: No change
  • Dissolution: No change
    • Several of you suggested allowing Dissolution to be cast at a Range of 0 to be able to make maximum use of the area of effect in situations where more than 2 enemies are in close combat with the caster. However, the Earth and Air paths are Sacriers' "close combat" paths and must therefore keep the advantage of being able to perform optimal health steals in close combat to maintain the balance with the Fire and Water paths that have the non-negligible advantage of larger range and areas of effect.
  • Coagulation: MOD
    • Is now Libation.
      • How it works:
        • "The caster sacrifices 30% of their HP to be healed at the end of their next turn. The heal value increases with Suffering. Stops Mutilation."
          • Suffering 0: 10% of HP
          • Suffering 1: 11% of HP
          • Suffering 2: 12% of HP
          • Suffering 3: 14% of HP
          • Suffering 4: 17% of HP
          • Suffering 5: 20% of HP
          • Suffering 6: 23% of HP
          • Suffering 7: 26% of HP
          • Suffering 8: 28% of HP
          • Suffering 9: 29% of HP
          • Suffering 10: 30% of HP
      • Casting conditions: 
        • AP cost: 2
        • Maximum range: 0
        • Minimum range: 0
        • Modifiable range: no
        • Recast interval: 4/3
  • Blood Pact: MOD
    • How it works: 
      • "Temporarily increases the caster's maximum Vitality."
        • 30% max. Vitality (3 turns)
    • Casting conditions: 
      • AP cost: 3
      • Maximum range: 0
      • Minimum range: 0
      • Max. stacking: 1
      • Recast interval: 3
  • Pillory: BUFF
    • Is now the variant of Thorn Crown.
    • Acquisition levels: 
      • 85 / 152 → 155
    • How it works: 
      • "Applies the Unmovable state and reduces damage received from a distance. If the target suffers close-combat damage, the effects of the spell are removed. If the caster is at Suffering 5 or more, Pillory can no longer be removed."
  • Berserk: MOD
    • Is now the variant of Jashin Ritual.
    • Acquisition levels: 
      • 195 → 85 / 152
    • How it works: 
      • "The caster goes Berserk: they become Unhealable and lose 90% of their HP to immediately reach Suffering 10, for 2 turns. The damage received while Berserk lasts is converted into Power. Puts the caster's Swords in the Berserk state and increases their Power."
      • No longer removes the effects of the Mutilation spell.
    • Casting conditions: 
      • Area of effect: 2-cell circle → single-target
      • Forbidden states: / → Jashin Ritual
      • Initial recast interval: / → 1
  • Retribution: BUFF
    • Casting conditions: 
      • Initial recast interval: 1 → 0
  • Bloodthirsty Madness: BUFF/NERF
    • How it works:
      • Damage is doubled on the caster's Swords.
        • 24 to 28 → 48 to 56 damage (best element)



Several new combos are hiding in this changelog. Can you find them all?


Here is a glimpse of the new distribution of spells and variants as well as their acquisition order, so you can better visualize the few changes. The spells in question are the following: Thorn Crown, Pillory, Berserk, and Jashin Ritual.


I sincerely hope that these changes are up to your expectations and that you like this new version! Your feedback has been a wonderful help. Thank you. Of course, it isn't perfect yet, but we're nearing the finish line. Your feedback after the BETA tests will be SUPER important as well; it will help us fine-tune this Sacrier changelog. If you have any questions until then, don't hesitate to share your feedback on the forum. 


Have a nice one, everybody!

[Crocus]