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Scepter #1 attack needs serious rework


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#1 kambo_rambo

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 10:42 AM

To preface, the scepter skill currently does a mediocre amount of damage, and on the third combo chain, it creates a clone that casts more ether bolts.
Clones created use the #1 skill of the weapon currently equipped, and thats fine and dandy because even though they do no damage, there is usually an inherent effect. Sword clone applies vulberability, Staff clone applies one of three conditions, Greatsword clone hits multiple times (allows more bleed stack if traited), but the exception is the scepter clone. These clones do nothing but throw a negligible damage bolt every second or so, and essentially you are only keeping them around to act as a meatshield or shatter fodder.
In the betas, the #1 skill used to apply confusion, which makes sense as that was the role of the weapon.
My concern is that currently the scepter is rarely used, due to its inability to output any notably significant amount of damage or control. If Anet wants us to use scepters again, it needs to be reworked – possibly somehow applying confusion without a terrible imbalance.
Anyone share the same thoughts?

#2 Killyox

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 11:12 AM

I remember when scepter caused confusion on each hit... That was drastically OP

#3 Angelus359

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 11:16 PM

They could make 1 out of 3 hits of the scepter cause confusion, same for clones

#4 Allmightybob

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:59 AM

Scepter is almost viable now for shatter builds, and the 1# skill operates just fine now. ANet just need to make the third attack in the chain have half the cast time it has now. Scepter's bigger concern that Illusionary Counter is a terrible skill.

#5 rizipt

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 11:19 AM

Illusionary Counter hits like a mac truck.

#6 Skyro

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 06:15 PM

The Scepter auto-attack is actually much improved with the faster projectile, though it still suffers from the next attack chain being delayed until the projectile hits its target (why didn't ANet just make it instant like Necro's Scepter auto-attack?)

The block skills (Illusionary Counter/Illusionary Riposte) is the real reason Scepter/offhand Sword doesn't see more play. It is an ok concept but they are implemented very, very poorly. The issues with the block skills are:

1) The counterattack has a range of something like ~600. Outside of that range and it doesn't do anything, and you must have LoS. This causes it to miss a lot since the other Scepter skills have a range of 900.
2) There is a delay between skill activiation and the block affect, making the skill very cumbersome to use as a defensive tool.
3) There is a delay between the blocked attack and counterattack. This delay between the block and counterattack makes it so if you interrupt the counterattack (e.g. by dodging) it will not occur. This is a big issue with using this skill vs big, multi-hit attacks since if you want to get the counter attack in you will have to eat some of those successive blows. This delay also causes the counterattack portion of this skill to be very easy to dodge, LoS, move out of range, etc.
4) Finally, the secondary activation blind/daze (Counterspell/Counter Blade) also suffers from the slow projectile. These all cause the skill to be quite useless for any strategic play, such as blocking or blinding a critical attack. I assume it is a projectile due to it blinding/dazing in a line, but it would be a lot more useful as an instant single target skill.

Improvements that should be made:
1) Remove the delay between skill activation and block effect to allow for responsive blocking
2) Make the skill block all attacks for its entire duration so it can actually be used as a true defensive skill
3) Make the counterattack a secondary skill activation (similar to the blind/daze effect) after blocking at least 1 attack so that the player has control of when and where to use the skill
4) Reduce the damage of the counterattack due to the higher defensive potential of the skill
5) Make the secondary activated blind/daze instant, but single target

#7 rizipt

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 06:17 PM

Anything but reducing the damage.  I like it how it is.  It's supposed to block a single attack.  It sounds like you want to completely rework it into a 2sec invuln with damage on command.

If it's a big hit you want to avoid, block it
If it's a multi hit skill, dodge it or block it and trait for retaliation

I think you're asking too much.  Making it smoother and increase range to match is good though.

#8 Skyro

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 11:03 PM

View Postrizipt, on 29 November 2012 - 06:17 PM, said:

Anything but reducing the damage.  I like it how it is.  It's supposed to block a single attack.  It sounds like you want to completely rework it into a 2sec invuln with damage on command.

If it's a big hit you want to avoid, block it
If it's a multi hit skill, dodge it or block it and trait for retaliation

I think you're asking too much.  Making it smoother and increase range to match is good though.

ANet has said during the beta they wanted to make the Scepter a defense-oriented weapon. Currently there is nothing defensive about it as the block skill is best used as a big damage attack with a block trigger.

If ANet has reversed positions on the weapon and wants to keep the flavor of a 1 block + big counterhit, they need to make the skill smoother by removing the initial delay, and making the counterattack a secondary, player-activated skill after blocking one attack so they can use it when and where they want. A smart player can very easily dodge/LoS/OoR the counterattack in its current form due to this delay.

#9 rizipt

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 05:49 PM

I know what you're saying and it isn't perfect but c'mon it aint all that bad.  For one, a smart player is going to dodge/LoS all kinds of stuff so that's whatever and even if he does that's buying time which can be defensive in its own right.  A smart mesmer is going to know which big attack to block and when and you can't tell me that blocking isn't defensive.  I'll just take the offense to go with it if he doesn't 'easily' avoid my counter.  I'd also not be opposed to some of your suggested changes but I can see why they aren't implemented.

I'm sure it's because I'm not going against smart players but it's working more often than not.  Somewhere in the process they usually end up chewing themselves up pretty good.  I often end up landing the counterattack or providing enough relief to allow time or whatever for other stuff to make it seem worthwhile.  I don't check the log all the time but I see blocks happening, clones popping from them and hunks of damage.  Blocking a huge hit is the primary goal.  Time and a possilbe counter are bonuses for me.  Multihit skills usually hurt us both but 10 stacks of confusion, retaliation and reflection seem to equate to a lot of damage really quickly.

#10 rizipt

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 05:34 AM

I've been coming at this the wrong way, getting defensive because I like the weapon.   I'll take any love they offer.

#11 Trei

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 06:22 AM

Rather than making them instant like necros, my suggestion would be to change scepter attacks to actual physical small projectile finishers (20%).

Not only would scepter users now gain the ability to cast all sorts of bolts (with the various fields), the clones would too. Confusion caused by shooting through ethereal fields would not be overpowered due to the small projectile sub-category's 20% chance limit.

I feel this would be just nice to make scepter a very attractive weapon at least on par with sword.

Edited by Trei, 01 December 2012 - 06:23 AM.





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