Plans for Race/Class/Kingdom Combinations

Discussion/questions about gameplay (skills/classes/etc), current or suggested.
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laeZ1
Posts: 7
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2017 3:45 pm

Plans for Race/Class/Kingdom Combinations

Post by laeZ1 » Thu Jan 04, 2018 10:54 pm

At the time of asking this, I know that the first class (Soldier) is still being developed; I also know that the developers have got somewhat of a good grasp of what things will look like in the end. I was pleased when I read the following.
Alex wrote:Not all races will have the stats to achieve master <skill> of every type (eg giants are too dumb for master alchemy, etc).
We were speaking about Skills at the time, but it looks like races will be allowed to learn skills they won't be very good at - this is GREAT news for people like me, who love making odd characters. It makes me wonder if the same will hold true for classes. Sure, we might never see a Drow/Demon/Delf/whatever Paladin, but what about a Giant Magic User, or a Minotaur Thief? Race/Class combinations that won't by any means be optimal or common, but would still be unrestricted by code.

Here's my question, plainly:
How restricted will Races be when choosing classes?
Will there be some classes that are only available to one or very few races?
How restricted will Races and Classes be when combined with Kingdoms? ie Could certain classes only come from certain kingdoms? Perhaps a magic user trained in the east would have slightly different talents than one trained in the south, no matter whereabouts they move to later in life?

In my ideal game, there would be no Race/Class restrictions, but perhaps a warning if you try to do something that won't work well when you're making the character - (WARNING, Giants do not naturally make good Magic Users. Are you sure you want this to be your class?). In my ideal game (though this may be outside the realm of possibility), classes would have the same name but have the posibility of being either slightly or very different depending on a character's starting kingdom. A Knight from the west may have prayers that heal, while one from the East may have prayers that buff. The Rogue from one kingdom might have more stealth abilities, while the rogue from another one would have more acrobatic abilities. Bards would have different types of songs in their repertoires. Such a system would allow an incredible number of race/class/home kingdom combinations... which would be a dream come true for a player like me (I feed on character creation).

Food for thought, I guess.

Alex
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Re: Plans for Race/Class/Kingdom Combinations

Post by Alex » Sat Jan 06, 2018 6:32 am

How restricted will Races be when choosing classes?
It's all alignment based. Which race/class combo you pick is based on your alignment chosen from one of the 9.
Will there be some classes that are only available to one or very few races?
Nope. A race just might suck at a class.
How restricted will Races and Classes be when combined with Kingdoms? ie Could certain classes only come from certain kingdoms? Perhaps a magic user trained in the east would have slightly different talents than one trained in the south, no matter whereabouts they move to later in life?

At game start, they won't. I'm investigating a way to have 'knight' be both dark knight and paladin, based on your aura with different skills. Same with a priest.

This requires some custom coding, and won't likely be address until after 1.0 launch.


However: from the get go, every class will have a prime and a second stat, which almost all their skills will use for effectiveness. For example: a thief has dex/int, let's say. High int means they maybe able to lay traps or use poisons more effectively, but a high dex means more powerful circles/backstabs. A priest might be wis/int, with their healing spells being wis and their damage spells being int based.


This will allow for lopsided races (giants, sprites, etc) who are 25 stat heavy to excel at only one aspect of the class (without SERIOUSLY sacrificing their character's other stats) and allow tweeners to 'split the middle' as they see fit.

So a dwarf soldier might be great at tank, a giant great at damage, but a human can split the middle.


Stats will matter in this game, as they will set the 'floor' for the bonuses to *add* to. This means skills + stats (and racial bonus) will be used to calculate the base floor (whether its damage, time for DoT, success for dodge or swim, etc) and then the buffs (spells + equipment) get added to it. So a giant will receive no more damage boost than a sprite in terms of equipment and buffs (a few exceptions may exist), it's just a giant's floor will start much higher.

The floor is a 'step-linear' (1-11 is penalty - aka -1, 12-20 is 'normal, aka +1', 21-24 is +2, and 25 is +3 currently). Things like 'two-handed' on a sword don't buff YOUR floor damage for melee. It boosts the *weapons* floor damage. This is then added against your floor damage. Then buffs are added atop this.

So in this, what determines melee damage?

A level 50 two-handed heavy sword has an accuracy, speed, and damage value associated with it. It also gets a 25% two handed bonus. It's level + damage + size + type of weapon (heavy sword) + enchantments on the weapon determine the floor damage of the weapon. Then multiply it by condition/2 (so at 50% condition, it deals 25% less damage).

Then that # is taken against your skills (sword specialization proficiency level, enhanced damage, armor penetration - if applicable), your size vs the weapons (if its smaller, you lose damage, but gain accuracy, bigger you gain but you lose accuracy which is calced before hand in the hit roll), your base strength/5 rounded down, and then your affects.

Currently there is no critical roll. I'll be introducing critical hits as a function of cha + int/2 to spice things up after I can get a good stable baseline, reliable melee dps going on.


I hope that explains a bit why classes are going to be the way they are. Also, I do plan (post beta) to allow characters to 'remort', and redo their stats after they hit 50 at a high cost, so they can 'change' their focus within the class. Currently I do not plan for class changes to take place, but in the distant horizon am considering that level 45+ characters will be able to 'sub focus' in their class for an additional few skills.

Example: a sorc at level 45 can choose to be: elementalist, divine inspiration, or battlemage.

An elementalist might get a few low level warlock AOE or range spells.
A divinely inspired mage might get heal serious, cure blindness, and a few other low cleric ones.
And a battlemage might get whips, a castable bash ability, a weapon damage boosting spell, and a defense spell etc

These are just examples, and these might be a year away, but that's vague outline I'm aiming for the evolution of the game past the basic 4 classes for open alpha, then the 'base 10' for open beta.

laeZ1
Posts: 7
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2017 3:45 pm

Re: Plans for Race/Class/Kingdom Combinations

Post by laeZ1 » Mon Jan 08, 2018 6:14 pm

Alex wrote:I'm investigating a way to have 'knight' be both dark knight and paladin, based on your aura with different skills. Same with a priest.

This requires some custom coding, and won't likely be address until after 1.0 launch.
That's extremely exciting! Here's hoping the coding isn't too tough :D It'd also be really interesting to see what you could do with that same thought process for the other classes (to maybe a lesser extent).
Alex wrote:Currently I do not plan for class changes to take place, but in the distant horizon am considering that level 45+ characters will be able to 'sub focus' in their class for an additional few skills.
I like this idea too! I'm a sucker for options.
Alex wrote:basic 4 classes for open alpha, then the 'base 10' for open beta.
To see if we're on the same page...
Basic 4:
"Fighter" (Soldier)
"Arcane Magic"
"Prayer Magic"
"Rogue"

Base 10:
"Fighter" (Soldier)
"Arcane Magic"
"Prayer Magic"
"Rogue"
"Bard"
"Barbarian"
"Ranger"
"Monk"
"Paladin"
"Different kind of Spellcaster" (Theurge, Warlock, Necromancer, Shaman, etc)

I'm guessing I'm probably off a little. What does 'base 10' mean to you?

Ardith
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Joined: Fri Jun 30, 2017 11:08 pm

Re: Plans for Race/Class/Kingdom Combinations

Post by Ardith » Mon Jan 15, 2018 1:34 pm

Working on the 4 base classes as they're primarily wrapped into 4 different functions: warrior, healer, adventurer and mage.

I think I'm going to ramble on about 3 classes in particular that aren't rolled into those first rollouts. Paladin/Dark Knight/Bard.

With the bard it's traditionally been that they're nothing more than a support class that hangs back and lets everybody else do the work while they apply various buffs to the other classes. I've never personally found that playstyle to be very fun. Especially when it comes down to defending your character in PvP, support classes are at a huge disadvantage. If in a boxing match or MMA, for instance, if a competitor A is not able to mount a competent response to the other competitor B's attacks then the match is called and competitor A would lose.

Paladin and Dark Knight are a different beast as we're trying to make one a tank class and the other a dps class. This literally means that the paladin can't have better defensive options than the dark knight and still put out the same amount of damage as the dark knight which was a feature that plagued the other game we all came from. This was exemplified by the defensive buffs each class got and curses that were used. Both classes got protection which is a decent defensive buff that reduces 1/3 of all damage dealt from opposite alignments. But the game is skewed toward having more dark aura mobs than light aura mobs especially in end game areas. There are really only two areas that the hellion shined in a tanking role, and the fact that hellions did not have anything that could draw aggro also meant that they were subpar tanks. There's also bless vs curse. Bless, once cast, is an always active passive boost to all saving throws and accuracy. Curse, on the other hand, just isn't as good, as it is only applicable during combat and has a casting time and mana cost for each cast attempt.

Paladins also got the armor spell which was also an always active buff against melee damage by making it harder to hit the caster. Hellions on the other hand got shield, which after the faerie fire/shield nerf was a rather lackluster spell. It was actually written into the help files at one point that they were a +100 and -100 boost and debuff to magical protection at one point. It would also suggest that they're geared toward fighting casters...which they're not really...

Intimidate vs sanctuary is also interesting. Personally I think that intimidate is a really cool ability, but it provides no defensive bonus beyond keeping aggro off of a group that hellion is in. Also it doesn't work against any mobs that are in any end game area. They'll just ignore the check for it. It'd probably be pretty cool if a tough demon is like, "wow I really don't want to mess with that knight because they look scary." On the other hand the check for sanctuary works everywhere against everything and also provides a 1/3 damage reduction to it. By this point you should see that one class is getting the short end of the stick. Especially since the hellion's only melee dps ability, cleave requires a cool pulse to be able to use so it also requires players to turn off auto assist so they can utilize both intimidate and cleave so it turns them into support dps as they're not capable of playing a tank role, and they're not able to use dps abilities unless there are certain criteria met.

Holy word is also better than domination. It's literally a type holy harm spell that also casts dispel magic on an enemy group. I'm not even sure what the point of domination is considering the grey troll cannot be dominated anymore and the best dominate after that was the swashbucklers in menegroth but that was also nerfed by the fact that domination now hurts the victim's charisma.

About the only place that Hellions shine over paladins is that hellfire is better than bolt of glory as it has more applications for PvP. But in PvE it's useless as everything in end game areas is immune to fire and negative energy.

I have to also wonder about those players that aren't interested in PvP but like to do PvE would feel about most of their skills being useless at end game. Can't dps with cleave because pulse is racing. Hellfire is useless because they're immune. Intimidate doesn't work. Blindness doesn't work because nothing at end game has eyes. Protection doesn't work because you're evil and the enemies you're facing are evil. You're just subpar support dps with a polearm permanently relegated to the middle row. Why not make a mercenary or barbarian instead to be better melee dps.

About the only two things that hellions have that they really shine with are rift and weaken.

I would make a few changes to both classes. Paladins would lose holy word and sanctuary. They don't need to have holy word anyway if they're going to play a tank role and having 5 of them roll in a room casting it at the same time is pretty cheap. A spell like sanctuary should be a bonus buff for playing a more support role like a cleric or shaman. Given that paladins already get to wear armor plate and do decent damage with melee and have higher base hps they shouldn't get to have their cake and eat it too. Armor gets rolled into bless and bless loses the bonus to weapon accuracy, but retains the bonuses to saving throws. They also get to keep protection against evil. We could probably also think of some other things to make them even better tanks, maybe even the best tanks in the game.

Dark knights also get to keep protection against good, and gain aggro from the group if the player chooses to play the tough guy, but they'll never be as good as the paladin at tanking because that's not their primary function. Instead we'd give them things that would complement their more aggressive nature like spells that increase their damage output and accuracy to make them better at doing damage. And then make it so that their other skills/spells actually work in end game content. I think they should lose the domination feat because it doesn't seem very knightly to have a minion do your dirty work for you.

laeZ1
Posts: 7
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2017 3:45 pm

Re: Plans for Race/Class/Kingdom Combinations

Post by laeZ1 » Mon Jan 15, 2018 4:53 pm

Ardith wrote:
Mon Jan 15, 2018 1:34 pm
With the bard it's traditionally been that they're nothing more than a support class that hangs back and lets everybody else do the work while they apply various buffs to the other classes. I've never personally found that playstyle to be very fun. Especially when it comes down to defending your character in PvP, support classes are at a huge disadvantage.
Your thoughts regarding the Paladin vs Dark Knight was expertly explained and very thorough. I'd just like to say that though playing a class that supports like a bard isn't fun for you, I love it. I love playing support type classes in everything from tabletops to MMOs to MOBAs to MUDs. And part of the support class is the fact that you'll always be at a disadvantage in a 1v1 against a non-support class. Buffs and debuffs are my favorite way to contribute to fights, with healing at third, and finally DPS at the bottom.

It'd be cool if bards could hold their own, but it wouldn't ruin my fun if they couldn't.

Ardith
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jun 30, 2017 11:08 pm

Re: Plans for Race/Class/Kingdom Combinations

Post by Ardith » Mon Jan 15, 2018 11:03 pm

laeZ1 wrote:
Mon Jan 15, 2018 4:53 pm
Ardith wrote:
Mon Jan 15, 2018 1:34 pm
With the bard it's traditionally been that they're nothing more than a support class that hangs back and lets everybody else do the work while they apply various buffs to the other classes. I've never personally found that playstyle to be very fun. Especially when it comes down to defending your character in PvP, support classes are at a huge disadvantage.
I love playing support type classes in everything from tabletops to MMOs to MOBAs to MUDs. And part of the support class is the fact that you'll always be at a disadvantage in a 1v1 against a non-support class.
Think about it this way: Tanking is support by keeping the rear rank from taking damage so they can perform their role which would either be healing or putting down dps. The other roles are also support in that the healer is keeping the tanks alive and the dps is putting out damage that kills things and keeps mobs from causing harm to the party.

Ardith
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jun 30, 2017 11:08 pm

Re: Plans for Race/Class/Kingdom Combinations

Post by Ardith » Fri May 04, 2018 3:58 pm

laeZ1 wrote:
Mon Jan 15, 2018 4:53 pm
Your thoughts regarding the Paladin vs Dark Knight was expertly explained and very thorough. I'd just like to say that though playing a class that supports like a bard isn't fun for you, I love it. I love playing support type classes in everything from tabletops to MMOs to MOBAs to MUDs. And part of the support class is the fact that you'll always be at a disadvantage in a 1v1 against a non-support class. Buffs and debuffs are my favorite way to contribute to fights, with healing at third, and finally DPS at the bottom.

It'd be cool if bards could hold their own, but it wouldn't ruin my fun if they couldn't.
I'm going to make a second comment on this, though I won't be surprised if I get slapped for this one. I haven't found any body of evidence on this as when I search for it I can't find any sources on this, but I have noticed a trend where female players tend to prefer support classes and play a passive role in gameplay (healing/enchanting) as opposed to active roles (tanking/dps).

From your post it would seem that Bard and Dark Knight would be right up your alley as they're typically the classes that apply buffs and debuffs. But at the same time they're not even going to be packaged at the launch of the game. I'd probably be interested in a survey on what classes players prefer to play, especially divided amongst the sexes. Maybe the results would come back and I'd be totally wrong.

Alex
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Posts: 24
Joined: Wed May 24, 2017 3:44 pm

Re: Plans for Race/Class/Kingdom Combinations

Post by Alex » Fri May 18, 2018 3:59 am

I'd be interested in hearing about a survey too.

It'd help prioritize the classes beyond the first 4 (obviously focused on because they are the 'basic').


I don't have anything set in 'stone', and my 'vision' is just taking the best parts of various MUDs I've played and coming up with a newer, more player centric world where myth and legend dominate, and cast the current world as one that lives in the shadow of a much greater, more awe-inspiring history.


To that end, I'm not wedded to any thing beyond these principles for player classes:
  • The curve for return on time investment is log based (starts off high but then tails off into lesser, marginal gains)
  • Players can do/build almost everything they need, by some mix of crafting and trading with other players/shops
  • No 1-win buttons or 1 hit kills from max hp to 0 by a level 50, 15 con character (the baseline)
  • PK is not wham-bam-thankyou-maam but actively involves some strategy, prep, chase, and kill securing
  • Each class has at least 2 power paths, neither of which they can maximize on together
  • Convenience/jack-of-all-trades means sacrificing power of the class.
  • No way to 'irreversibly screw up' your build so that you become useless
  • Must rely on a primary stat and second stat for their buffs/debuffs/damage/utility skills
  • Those must map to the fortitude/willpower/reflex save vectors for their skills, meaning each class can only address 1 save fully and 1 save partially.
  • All skill/spells must be line of sight or proximity based to the character
  • Classes aren't reliant on extra-class devices to be successful.

Lastly to address my base 12 (note, not 10):

What it means to be 'complete' in the offering of being able to have each class represent the round-robin of utility (debuffs mobility control, etc), damage absorb (buffs, healing, tanking), and damage dealing in each major category (pure melee, pure arcane magic, pure divine magic, and hybrid utility).

What those are called or how they accomplish those roles are up for grabs, but I have a preliminary outline. The whole concept is they fit well-defined, class-relative roles that have balance to them. I won't pretend that anything will be 'perfectly' balanced, but at the same time, I'm pretty good as sniffing out what is overpowered.


As a general rule, unless something is way overpowered, I try to 'buff up' not 'nerf down' and keep away from designing skill/spells where it's useful to always have in every situation.

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