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Sacrier Design Thoughts

By SmuglyDuckling#6687 - FORMER SUBSCRIBER - August 02, 2019, 00:03:24
After spending some time with the new Sacrier, I have some thoughts about some of the specific design choices.

The summary of my feedback is: I like the overall design, I appreciate the need for the changes, and I think that their implementation definitely has the best interest of the class at heart. I think the Sac's power level is more than adequate, despite the challenges that close-combat classes have with higher level PvM content in general (I don't do much PvP, so don't care to comment on it).

That said, the self-buffing attacks (Nervousness, Clobbering, Excruciating Pain, Immolation, Decimation, Gash, Fury, Carnage) just feel like they're missing something. They feel inelegant. There's practically no reason not to first improve them by casting on yourself, so it doesn't feel strategic or tactical. The mechanic feels like it intends to allow for sacrificing some power now to do a bigger burst later, but in practice it feels like a consistent AP tax.

The malus is also uninteresting. I like the intention: increasing your offense lowers your survivability, but temporarily eroded HP doesn't interact with the rest of the class' features. I believe that I would have preferred an accumulation of -% resists (or increased Final Damage Taken), or a stacking bleed (like the old Fury spell), or some other way to increase the threat to our life, with an appropriate bonus to counteract. I do understand that the temporary HP erosion was presented to offset the actual erosion that was being inflicted from self damage, but the current penalty feels uninspired.

Obviously it's pretty late in the process to be considering new ideas, but why not consider a system in which entities that attack the Sacrier gain a state that is unique to themselves. That is, the Sac has the ability to punish monsters that attack it. This might even be an accumulating state, the stacks of which increase the Sac's damage against, and decrease the Sac's damage taken from the affected entity. This circumvents the problem of the original Sac, in which allies best used their AP to charge up the Sac to unreasonable levels, and also helps to prevent the Sac from boosting too high too fast (since the bonuses are applied individually).

Spells like Retribution or the old Punishment could consume this state, resetting the bonus but unleashing a very large effect. Spells like coagulation could similarly consume this state to provide shielding or healing. A support spell might allow a single ally (or all allies) to similarly take advantage of the Sacs bonuses for a single turn or two.

Just some thoughts, what do you think?
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That AP tax seems just too artificial for me. I would like lower base damage (like 50) but more damage increase with your % hp. 

The actual problem with sacriers is that they can almost one-shot anyone, due to that 63-69 damage spell (Carnage) plus their buffs (stacking 1.2k agility + 500 power is pretty damn easy in combat). So, making it to have just one good turn for each 2 means they'll still one shot anyone (so problem not solved at all) and annoying from the point of view of the Sacrier (casting a 4ap spell on yourself is A LOT).

Also, if they can't hit an enemy, they just cast it again, so their "good turn" will be whenever they want. Once they killed some1, repeat the 4 ap waste, but the damage have already been done. 

Maybe they shouldn't be able to recast it until the buff disappears. Maybe there shouldn't be that kind of buff. Maybe the health penalty should be health loss (or even taking some maximum HP (erosion) ).

For me, the ideal thing should be: Put all the spells at a medium point (for instance, carnage at 50, clobbering at 35), remove the buff, increase the damage gained when you're loosing HP. 

I actually loe the new sacrier and it feels like a berserker, but IMO that change would make the trick to balance it (they'll be even more powerfull when low HP, but way less at max HP, which is the point of a berserker class).
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