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As promised, after the Feca rework we’ll be revamping the Xelor class, anticipated for the update at the beginning of December.
 


Why Xelor?

There were many reasons why we launched this revamp in particular. 
To begin with, Xelor’s role rested almost entirely on a single ability: massive AP loss. This ability poses large balancing issues:
  • Several years ago, this ability was too strong against monsters, allowing Xelors to systematically prevent certain monsters and Bosses from carrying out actions.  As a result, a series of modifications was made over various updates that made this ability less significant and more of an option. That means that currently, it’s no longer as decisive.
  • Against character players, this ability makes it too easy to prevent characters from playing, without any adaptation necessary on the Xelor’s part. It is possible to keep a high effectiveness by repeating the same actions on every turn. In addition, characters who suffer these massive AP losses can do less actions, their gameplay becomes less varied, and combat gets more frustrating.
It’s a potentially interesting ability, but not enough so that the only role of one class is to use it or abuse it: massive losses are too powerful and uninteresting to play or take.
Minor losses make combat interesting, but they are not enough to constitute a role in their own right.
During previous updates, we gave Xelors a new positioning role based on atypical spells like Rhol Bak or Rewind. This new role seems more promising to us, because it can potentially justify a Xelor’s place in a group, no matter the circumstances. However, we also want each class to have several workable roles. That’s why Xelors are keeping part of their AP loss role. Their damage-dealing abilities will be strengthened and diversified, while gaining a role that from now on will be much more real and powerful than “temporal positioner”.

Goals:

  • Balance the class’s potential for AP loss so it is less important and so it is no longer possible to completely prevent an opponent from playing.
  • Keep an effective amount of AP loss ability in a role that is aligned more with protection, sufficiently reducing a target’s possible actions without completely preventing him from moving.
  • Considerably strengthen Xelor’s positioning abilities, thanks to new teleportation mechanics.
  • Offer a spell panel that is less redundant, more diversified, and richer so that Xelors will be able to adapt to more situations, while keeping weaknesses fairly pronounced, to make Xelor gameplay less repetitive.
  • Strengthen Xelor damage-dealing role in line with the new abilities.
  • Make all elemental builds effective and give them special features in order to distinguish them.
  • Offer a true “time control” role that is more present than before, with new abilities that better correspond to this role.
  • Bring real depth to Xelor gameplay, with multi-functional spells and others with combo effects, that is, spells that could potentially have different effects depending on which spells are used before.
  • More depth and richness, which also means potentially more complexity. For this rework, we’ve tried to keep the abilities easy to understand and use, so that you don’t have to do extremely complex actions in order to be effective. However, we wanted to give significant depth to Xelor class’s gameplay, allowing players with strong tactical analysis and an excellent understanding of their spells to perform true temporal miracles!
In order to reach all these goals at once, we have reworked all Xelor spells. The majority of spells will keep a nearly identical role and use, most will gain new effects, and some have been completely revised, because they no longer corresponded to our expectations for this class.

How New Effects Work:

Before getting into detailed descriptions of the new spells, there are a few new mechanics to understand.
Xelors will be able to teleport (and therefore move) a target in five different ways:
  • Teleport to the previous position: The target is teleported to the last position where he was before his last movement. Each MP used counts as a movement.
  • Teleport to the position at the start of the turn: The target is teleported to the cell where he began his last turn.
  • Teleport in equal distance to the target: The caster is teleported by the same distance as the target.
  • Teleport in equal distance to the caster: The target is teleported by the same distance as the caster.
  • Teleport in equal distance to the impact zone: All valid targets included in the spell’s area of effect are teleported by the same distance from the centre of the area of effect.
It is possible that the destination cell where the target or the caster is supposed to teleport may not be available. If that cell is a decoration, the teleport is cancelled but still used (cost in AP deducted and cooldown time used).
If the destination cell is occupied, the teleported character and the entity on the occupied cell change places: a Telefrag occurs and the two characters whose places were exchanged are the targets of the Telefrag. In DOFUS, a Telefrag (reference: http://quakewiki.org/wiki/Telefrag) is a change of position between two entities, created when a destination spot is already occupied by an entity.
For Xelor spells, when this scenario occurs, all affected targets enter a “Telefrag” state for two turns.
There is one exception: Xelors cannot use a “Telefrag” state by means of a teleport. 
Telefrag will play an important part in Xelor gameplay and will be the source of many combos.
To illustrate a Telefrag, here is a little animated gif showing the new version of the “Teleportation” spell. This spell will now allow the caster to teleport by the same distance as a target.

 
  1. The Xelor casts the Teleportation spell on the Iop.
  2. She is therefore teleported by the same distance as the Iop.
  3. The destination cell is occupied by a cawwot, so the cawwot is teleported to the Xelor’s original position.
But that’s not all. When a Telefrag occurs with one of their spells, whichever it is, Xelors can immediately recast their “Teleportation” spell (but not on the same target) and get two AP for one turn (this effect can only be triggered once per spell per turn). This makes some Xelor spells practically free (especially the Teleportation spell), as long as they manage to create Telefrags.
Finally, the “Telefrag” state is used for all elemental spells (spells that inflict damage in an element) to apply an additional effect to each of them: a teleport, an unbewitchment, additional damages, or a more substantial AP loss. However, in the case of teleportation or unbewitchment, the “Telefrag” state is used (it is removed).

List of New Spells

These spells are not listed in the order that they are obtained.
Utility spells: These spells do not inflict direct damage.
Rhol Bak: The effect of teleporting back to cell positions from the beginning of combat seemed too powerful to us to be able to find a satisfactory balance. So we’ve revised the spell so that it teleports everyone back to their previous position. The spell’s AP cost and cooldown time have been reduced as a result.

  1. The Xelor moves two squares.
  2. The Iop jumps into close combat with the Xelor.
  3. The Xelor casts Rhol Bak, which moves both the Iop and the Xelor to their previous positions. Then the Xelor moves back a square (each MP used counts as a movement) and the Iop returns to his position just before his Jump.
Flight: We are aware that this spell was Xelor’s main source of mobility. But it made Xelors too mobile: its effect was immediate, and Xelors were not vulnerable to a lock. We have therefore modified this spell so it works differently. Now, it teleports the target (ally or enemy) to his previous position, but only on Xelor’s next turn.
  1. The Xelor casts the Flight spell.
  2. The Iop plays and starts fighting in close combat with the Xelor.
  3. At the beginning of her turn, the Xelor returns to her previous position, escaping the area of the Iop’s lock.
Teleportation: Despite the loss of Flight as an instant mobility spell, Xelors should still have a great amount of mobility in part due to the new way the Teleportation spell works. For a low cost, Xelors can teleport by the same distance as a target. Plus, if a Telefrag is created (including by another spell) or used (by an elemental spell), Xelors can teleport again immediately (cooldown time is reset).
Rewind: There are no modifications to this spell.
Xelor's Dial: Although this spell still exists, the role of Xelor's Dial has nevertheless been changed. It no longer removes AP loss resistance from opponents. However, now it lets Xelors give AP to allies who are in a “Telefrag” state, as long as they are less than four cells away. It also inflicts damage on enemies who are in a “Telefrag” state, within the same distance.
Temporal Paradox: This spell replaces the “Devotion” spell, which has been removed. It allows for all entities within four cells of Xelor’s Dial to teleport by the same distance. All targets moved in this way move again at the beginning of the Dial’s turn (that is, at the end of the Xelor’s turn). With a little imagination and practice, you can create lovely temporal paradoxes that we will let you discover on your own :]

  1. Place the Dial.
  2. Cast the Temporal Paradox: The Iop is teleported by the same distance to the Dial.
  3. He moves within attack range of the Xelor, who takes his chance to attack.
  4. The Iop is teleported again by the same distance, returning to his original position.
Counter: This spell now reflects 50% of damages onto the attacker when Xelors are attacked in close combat (within one cell from Xelor). But it also reflects 10% of close combat damages onto all enemies who are in a “Telefrag” state.
Haziness: This spell now removes two undodgeable AP from all targets included in the area of effect for one turn. But all affected targets get back two AP on the next turn. In its previous form, if no ally was affected and several enemies were affected, the Haziness spell became an inescapable and too-powerful choice. Giving this spell a counterpart and making its casting free for Xelors means this spell can be used more often, while its use becomes less systematic, more balanced, and much more tactical. It can even be used effectively on allies.
Mummification: The way this spell works has been changed: Xelors can no longer inflict direct damage with their elemental spells while they are under the effects of this spell. However, they gain two MP, everyone immediately enters a “Telefrag” state, and each enemy in a Telefrag state takes damages in all four elements (fire, air, water, and earth). We wanted to use this spell to give a “joker” to Xelors who have trouble creating Telefrags. But it comes at a price!
Elemental spells:
Fire Build (AP Loss, Teleportation at Equal Distance):
  • Hand: Inflicts Fire damage and removes one dodgeable AP. If the target is in a “Telefrag” state, she loses two dodgeable AP.
  • Xelor's Sandglass: Inflicts Fire damage and removes one dodgeable AP. If the target is in a “Telefrag” state, she loses two dodgeable AP.
  • Temporal Dust: Inflicts Fire damage in a two-cell circle (the area of effect does not change). Targets in a “Telefrag” state are teleported by the same distance in relation to the centre of the area of effect. Removes “Telefrag” state.

  1. Cast Teleportation spell on the cawwot.
  2. The destination cell is occupied by the Iop, which creates a Telefrag. The Iop is in a “Telefrag” state.
  3. Cast the Temporal Dust spell on the Iop without being in the centre of the area of effect. He is teleported to the centre of the area of effect. He also loses his “Telefrag” state.
  4. The Iop is no longer in a “Telefrag” state, so casting the Dust a second time doesn’t teleport him again.
Water Build (AP Gain, AP Loss):
  • Slow Down: Inflicts Water damage and removes one dodgeable AP. If the target is in a “Telefrag” state, he loses two dodgeable AP. The spell costs two AP.
  • Time Theft: Inflicts Water damage. On his next turn, the caster gains one AP. If the target is in a “Telefrag” state, he loses one dodgeable AP.
  • Clock: Inflicts Water damage. On her next turn, the caster gains one AP. If the target is in a “Telefrag” state, she loses one dodgeable AP.
Earth Build (Damage, Symmetrical Teleportation):
  • Dark Ray: Inflicts Earth damage in a straight line. The target takes more damage if he is in a “Telefrag” state.
  • Loss of Motivation: Inflicts Earth damage. The target loses a bewitchment turn if he is in a “Telefrag” state. Removes “Telefrag” state.
  • Xelor’s Punch: Inflicts Earth damage. The target is teleported by the same distance to the caster if he is in a “Telefrag” state. Removes “Telefrag” state.

  1. Cast Teleportation spell on the cawwot.
  2. The destination cell is occupied by the Iop, which creates a Telefrag. The Iop is now in a “Telefrag” state.
  3. Cast “Xelor's Punch” spell. The target is teleported by the same distance to the caster and loses his “Telefrag” state. At the second casting, the target is not teleported because he is no longer in a “Telefrag” state.
Air Build (Damage, Temporal Teleportation):
  • Shrivelling: Inflicts Air damage. Deals more damage to targets in “Telefrag” state.
  • Frostbite: Inflicts Air damage. The target is teleported to her previous position if she is in a “Telefrag” state. Removes “Telefrag” state.
  • Synchro: Replaces the “Homing Hand” spell. Calls upon a stationary Hand that gets stronger every time a spell generates a Telefrag (once per spell). When the Hand itself suffers a Telefrag, it dies and inflicts damages in the surrounding area. A portion of the damage is linked to the Xelor’s Agility.

  1. The Hand is placed. The Xelor casts the Teleportation spell on it.
  2. The destination cell is occupied, which creates a Telefrag with the Iop. The Hand gets a bonus and becomes stronger.
  3. Next, Xelor’s Punch lets the Xelor teleport the Iop, in order to create a Telefrag with the Hand.
  4. The Hand dies and inflicts Air damages around it, because it was in a Telefrag state.
We want to make it possible to play the Xelor class easily and effectively without having to use the advanced techniques of time control spells. To do this, we’ve kept most of the spells with straightforward, instantaneous effects.
Xelors can keep the roles of AP loss, damage-dealing, and effective placement, thanks to all the elemental spells and very easy-to-use spells, such as the Teleportation spell.
In conclusion, it is difficult to summarize in one Devblog post all the possibilities offered by this class revamp. We hope to offer you a rich, interesting, and effective class (at the very least!). We’re excited to see what temporal combos you come up with!

Questions/Answers:


Will my Xelor be less powerful?
No! The class’s potential has clearly increased on many points. While chances for massive AP loss may be a bit less effective, everything else has been distinctly improved, like damage and positioning skills, among others!

But without Devotion, won’t my Xelor be useless?
That would be very simplistic. We haven’t removed the ability to grant AP. Instead, we’ve moved it and made it harder to use, because it is a very powerful skill that would become too strong in combination with the new spells that have been added in this class rework. However, here is a fairly easy way to give two AP to everyone on a four-person team:

  1. The four characters are positioned equally in relation to the Dial.
  2. Cast the “Temporal Paradox” spell: All targets will enter into a “Telefrag” state.
  3. The Dial gives two AP to all targets in a “Telefrag” state.
There are about 10,000 ways to get the same result, even with eight characters, so nothing is impossible.

Will it be harder to play Xelor?
Not necessarily, to get the same results as before the revamp! However, to do actions that are more powerful than before, you’ll probably have to think a bit harder. This will let the best players shine.

What is the reason for the Xelor rework? Removing or granting AP were great methods of time control!
We think that removing or granting AP are not abilities that effectively illustrate time control. It seemed too bad to limit ourselves to these skills. AP loss is also a relatively dangerous skill in terms of balanced gameplay and enjoyment of the game for Xelor’s opponents. We preferred to let Xelors remove enough AP to change the outcome of opponent turns, forcing enemies to regularly review their combos and tactics, while also allowing Xelors to truly control time through their temporal movements.

What about spell animations?
We hope we will have time to review the majority of Xelor spell animations. You can’t see them in the images included in this post, because they hadn’t been finalized yet when the screenshots were taken.

Will combat with a Xelor be more difficult to follow?
It’s a possibility. We’ve done our best to make it possible, if you are familiar with the class, to have a very specific idea of the actions that Xelors can perform during their turn. But obviously, the better the player, the more chances to surprise you (for better or worse!). The restrictions for casting powerful Xelor spells remain reasonable, and teleport effects only occur during the Xelor’s turn, which should limit the “I don’t know what just happened” effect in combat against a Xelor.

There’s no mention of 10% probability of gaining 1 AP on Xelor spells; is this intentional?
Absolutely. This ability will disappear completely. However, Xelors earn AP every time they cause a Telefrag, which partially compensates for this loss by removing the random effects of AP gains, which didn’t satisfy us.

What happens if a bunch of Xelors are playing together?
Only one Dial and one Synchro are allowed per team; placing a new one of either of these removes the previous one from gameplay. There is bound to be shared cooldown time between certain spells, particularly Haziness and Mummification. In terms of the “Telefrag” state, they won’t conflict when two Xelors are on the same team. If one Xelor puts a character in a “Telefrag” state, the other one benefits in the same way. On the other hand, it is quite different if the Telefrag is caused by an enemy. If an enemy Xelor creates a “Telefrag” state on a character, an ally Xelor cannot use it. For this reason, we will actually have two “Telefrag” states: an “Ally Telefrag” (put on allies who suffer a Telefrag) and an “Enemy Telefrag” (put on enemies).

Will a Magical Orb be given out?
All characters will see their characteristics reset for the December update! But don't worry, we'll have a full news with more information about the process on Monday. We are taking this chance to review and standardize the levels of Xelor characteristics.
We hope we will be able to do the same for the other classes throughout 2015.
 
 
 
Category: Game design