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WH/WE - class philosophy & design

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Vandoles
Posts: 248

WH/WE - class philosophy & design

Post#1 » Tue Aug 04, 2020 2:17 pm

So I've written about this a while ago and I've decided to give it another try. Kind of like I was muted for suggesting shadow warrior get a "shadowstep from wow" kind of skill and I see it's implemented fully now, it may eventually happen.

1) First of all a small overall comment on game design - I fully understand & appreciate that RoR, not having the required size of a dev team to adequately adress an MMO of this scope cannot spend too long discussing design/philosophy overall. Even going for just the numbers/skills/tweaks of 24 classes requires a huge full dev team. However I think a video game and especially an MMO needs to be developed by thinking in terms of experience and philosophy - i.e. that the game is fun and interesting to play. I will be writing some of the feel and philosophy of the WH/WE, which could feed into eventual mechanical changes (tweaks, numbers).

2) Secondly I have played RoR from about launch until conqueror came out or so. I have played Live as a WH for a long time. I have, however, only played for a few weeks or so recently on my WH after returning. I'd love to play a little longer before I write anything, but WH seems to be in a very sad state. If I make mistakes or there are better suggestions, I will happily edit/delete my thoughts to have a better thread.

With that in mind, first to quickly give my vision on the class-

1. Class philosophy

So the philosophy of the WH/WE seems fairly simple, correct? Assassin archetype, intended to roam, kill single targets, blow up squishies. Unfortunately this simply does not work in an orvrv setting and is overshadowed in scenario rvr. Stealth was never really done properly - it's adequate to grab a solo kill out in a lake, but woefully bad in providing any real contribution. So what role do they have?

Well, examining other mmos, the rogue archetype will usually assist dps. To do this they will mirror an mdps archetype. But, in other games usually a specialization exists, which removes the mdps survivability in exchange for sheer burst potential. Call it a "suicide bomber" archetype - your job is to go in, blow something up and die or in rare cases escape. On the other hand, their 3rd specc (razor strike/slice, i.e. carnage/confession) was an attempt to give them a mdps style archetype. As I am aware that this is discussed for a working aoe specc I will not focus on this - because I think its an issue of mechanical changes.

2. Mirror differences

The intended differences are quite obvious - WH has ranged abilities, WE has stronger melee. This is just a terrible idea, because you'll always end up with a stronger WE than WH, due to the ranged abilities being undertuned to compensate. To me the mirror differences should reflect the style of the classes - a WH should have an easier time against casters and a WE should have an easier time vs melee/tanks. Unlike other pairings, I think the mirror here overall should be very similar, simply because they have a niche role and it'd be worthless to create two niches where one is already hard.

3. Feel/style/design

So for me the two classes have one of the strongest distinctions of style and "feel" of the entire game. The "jump, dump and jump" sort of style is clear. Added survivability would ruin this. Here's the way I see it:

Jump in - easy, 100% success rate due to stealth. Dump your damage/heavy pressure - 50-60% chance of success of actually killing someone or enough pressure to cause problems. Jump out - small 10% chance that after everything you actually escape and survive. The problem with this is obvious, if you're able to kill things as a WH/WE it spirals out of control, but if you're not the entire feel is completely gone and the class is either worthless or needs to be brought to a mdps. But destroying their identity is also a terrible idea. I believe it's possible to tune it in a way that it can work, without going crazy.

Now onto suggestions:

1. Class philosophy - I believe the "suicide bomber" kind of style is a good one. It's a great tactical option, as seen in arena gameplay, where it will almost never end up overpowered (because in a "winner take all" surviving = instant loss) but will still be viable enough to provide an option. To me this is the intention of both their "backstab" and their "dot specc". The difference being the dot specc is specialized anti-healer (maybe also anti-tank?) and the backstab specc anti-dps. To accomplish this, we'd need the WH/WE able to kill an equally geared person unless stopped by a tank. And TTK would be roughly how long it takes for a frontline tank to be able to go back and assist. I.e. WH/WE is able to capitalize on mistakes and countered on no mistakes. This will mean that WH/WE are less desired in the absolute high-end, but there's their third specc, which is already considered as a consistent aoe damage specc and seems to be paid a lot of attention. Additionally, it gives a tactical option for forcing out mistakes/feinting your own and baiting WH/WE which I think could be a really fun aspect of rvr.

2. Mirror differences - Personally I think the philosophy here would be to strengthen the idea that WH is anti-caster and WE is more anti-physical, with disrupt/parry offering a boost to the WH/WE (like the WH has with vindication, 35% damage after a disrupt and riposte), which would mean they grow dangerous if focused. To do this you'd need to gimp the riposte specc of WH and offer it to the WE, while making the WH specc of anti-caster a bit more consistent. It could go either way, but this is a major style thing - a WH targetting the magus/sorc (he's a witch hunter) while the WE targets the SW/Engi (a high elf, obviously and...well there's some reason they hate engineers, I guess). Both classes in my mind should have exactly mirroring anti-healer speccs, especially due to the fact these are one of the special things they offer to a group. The harder to define difference is that of a WH/WE in the midst of a fight. To me that's always been that the WE grows crazier and crazier with bloodlust, maintaining her pressure and ramping up damage to a point. While the WH will go out, build up to a peak (a higher peak than the WE can) and then drop down. I will admit that I have no idea how this can reach a point where one isn't significantly stronger than the other. I'm hoping someone else will have insight on this.

3. Feel/style/design - nothing to suggest here, beyond staying true to them. WH and WE are two of the coolest classes in War. Let's keep it fun, it's a video game :)

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Rekoom
Posts: 64

Re: WH/WE - class philosophy & design

Post#2 » Tue Aug 04, 2020 5:14 pm

I have limited experience with my WE but I don't see the point of going in, killing something and suicide when healers have such an easy time reviving players.

To be effective in small scale WE/WH need to be hard enough targets to pin down that they are not immediately focused and killed even through guard.

Imo the "vanish" elixir could give you stealth for longer than 2 sec without being OP and the class should indeed have some kind of drawback to being focus fired, at least during a defensive cooldown maybe.

Just my 2 cents, hopefully more experienced players can chip in and we can have an interesting discussion.
Rekoom - BO
Nelsha - Witch Elf

VindicoAtrum
Posts: 18

Re: WH/WE - class philosophy & design

Post#3 » Thu Aug 06, 2020 1:08 pm

Rekoom wrote:
Tue Aug 04, 2020 5:14 pm
I have limited experience with my WE but I don't see the point of going in, killing something and suicide when healers have such an easy time reviving players.
This is pretty much it. 1v1 killing an important target (read: healer or bw) is ridiculously difficult. WE + heal debuff vs healer with half heals is still a very tough fight, and you will not win if even one person notices at any point through it. Then to have them get resurrected immediately... yeah, the class is wasted.
Rekoom wrote:
Tue Aug 04, 2020 5:14 pm
To be effective in small scale WE/WH need to be hard enough targets to pin down that they are not immediately focused and killed even through guard.
Disagree. WE/WH need a reason to exist, and no pitiful increase in being hard to pin down will ever make them more useful at anything that a WL/Mara can't do better.
Rekoom wrote:
Tue Aug 04, 2020 5:14 pm
Imo the "vanish" elixir could give you stealth for longer than 2 sec without being OP and the class should indeed have some kind of drawback to being focus fired, at least during a defensive cooldown maybe.
I almost forgot that ability existed, it's so **** if you use it to try and stay alive. I don't even think it's on my hotbar, because going invis for 1 GCD at the cost of... 1 GCD (rofl) isn't 1) fooling anyone and 2) ever going to stop you dying in wbs.

I've thought about this a fair bit. Leave WE/WH high risk (so good chances of failed assassination attempts) but give them a unique ability:

Witch Elf: Unwilling Souls (40AP)
For the next 10 seconds coat your weapons in a soul-withering poison, which prevents any target you dealt a killing blow from being resurrected.

Witch Hunter: Ethereal Bullets (40AP)
For the next 10 seconds load your gun with ethereal bullets, which prevent any targets you dealt a killing blow from being resurrected.

Boom. You KB someone? Off to the camp they go. No player res at all, until they respawn at camp. Now WE/WH have a role worth fulfilling - killing important targets actually removes them from the field temporarily. Sneak into a keep and blast a lone healer coming up the ramps? Off to camp he goes. Catch a straggler rushing to catch up with his sieging wb? Off to camp you go laddy.

As it stands, assassinating someone who will get ressed within seconds, only to die within those same seconds due to cloth armor and **** all hope of escape, is worthless in RVR. Something like a res-preventing debuff makes that dying for a kill worth it. I don't mind dying for an important target kill. I do mind dying for an important target kill who is back on his feet before I even hit the respawn button.

Duukar
Posts: 87

Re: WH/WE - class philosophy & design

Post#4 » Thu Aug 06, 2020 2:54 pm

If the Rez debuff gets implemented it needs to have a time within which they die after you’ve done dmg for the proc to fire. Like 3s witching doing dmg and off to camp.

Also there should potentially be some type of execution mechanic involved. Target below 50% gets extra dmg or something to assist in securing the kill.

Competing with WL and BW and Slayer for DBs is already enough of a challenge. If there is sooo much more on the line this skill could lead to MAJOR frustration.

This would be a fantastic QOL adjustment for WH and WE which are currently poor mdps in cloth armour with a lacklustre kit which pales compared to mara and WL and slayer and chop pan.

Oglaf
Posts: 62

Re: WH/WE - class philosophy & design

Post#5 » Thu Aug 06, 2020 2:57 pm

Anti-ress ability would actually be real interesting.

Vandoles
Posts: 248

Re: WH/WE - class philosophy & design

Post#6 » Thu Aug 06, 2020 3:33 pm

I'm not against the anti-res ability, but we're getting super bogged down with it as the end-all savior of the WH/WE. End of the day, dropping a single guy back to WC is quite situational, not as useful in sc/city, still depends on you picking someone off from the zerg in zerg play (unlikely) and a very small adjustment to the class. If anything, it's going to distract from actually fixing the classes by going back into their design and figuring out what the hell they're meant for.

Rekoom
Posts: 64

Re: WH/WE - class philosophy & design

Post#7 » Thu Aug 27, 2020 2:05 am

Sorry for the "Necro".

Don't believe WE/WH will ever mesh well with large scale oRvR fights. Probably more of an asset to a 6 man roaming team bringing a very strong heal debuff and high sustained dps.

These advantages are watered down once you add players as it becomes who can apply the most AOE pressure while keeping tanks up to keep the steamroll rolling.

Nevertheless, even in small scale my opinion is the advantages of bringing a WE/WH (heal debuffs & high DPS) do not outweigh the cons (relatively poor mobility, extremely fragile).

I would imagine the class needs more utility (keep it single target if you must) to be brought.

Most stealth classes in MMOs have similar issues of being poor team players and have been solved not by increasing damage (which makes them OP in small scale) but by adding specific utility such as group wide concealment/stealth, AOE CC or strong debuffs/buffs (smoke bomb preventing targeting from outside).

Similar things could be imagined in RoR (WE/WH already have the AOE stagger/self knock back).
Steal thing a whole group for 5 seconds or so would bring about interesting strategic plays and so would rendering an area untargetable or highly protective for allies (think darkness from Demon Hunters).

Just some ideas quickly thrown together.
Rekoom - BO
Nelsha - Witch Elf

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Sinisterror
Posts: 135

Re: WH/WE - class philosophy & design

Post#8 » Thu Aug 27, 2020 2:27 am

I really think shadowstep (core) would be really good for WE/WH. Elixir of shadows/Sanctified oil should be core also and bring back elixir of blades.
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Rumpel
Posts: 224

Re: WH/WE - class philosophy & design

Post#9 » Thu Aug 27, 2020 6:26 am

I'm playing exactly because I dont like zerging around in huge blobs with my Mara anymore. And beside the zerg WE is super fun for me. Im glad it's not another zerg class. And with its utility's my we stays much more longer alive then Mara.
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