Althought I do think that Balance between classes and races is quite good in PoE1, I couldn't prevent myself from thinking that it could have been even better with a couple of changes.
It is not very likely that patches would still be released, so Mods are the only way now. The good thing with mod is that the authors are free to make more radical changes since there is no risk to disappoint or frustrate casual gamers or anybody else.
To be honnest, I don't plan to create the mod in a near future due to personnal constraints, but this is an idea I would keep on my list of “things to do in life”.
General Principles :
The idea behing the mod would be to perform the minimal number of changes that would allow :
- Class Balance
- Race Balance
- Stats Balance
Abilities Balance is excluded from the scope since it would be much more complicated and would kill the fun of some very powerful abilities (such as Dragon Trashed). I don't aim perfect balance but to have any character choice “good enough to play in a party without feeling subpar”.
I intended to remain as faithful as possible to the original classes, except for one part : Per Rest abilities. I want to remove them almost completely (Binding Wounds and Field Triage being exceptions because they are tied to the Health System).
The removal of Per Rest is due to 2 reasons :
- Players usually don't like it
- It is a big source of power gap between the Vancian Casters (Wiz, Priest and Druids) and the other classes since it makes them much more powerful and sustainable for boss fights.
So let's go for the detailed list of changes. Feel free to make comments if you have other ideas or if you find some stuff weird or OP. Also tell me if something isn't clear or if you have comment about the post readability.
I – Race Balance :
Racial Talents worths about 1 Talent for all races except Godlikes (e.g. Arms Bearer = Armed to the teeth). Some are better than others, but I think they are all good enouh at least for some builds (Mountain Dwarf being situational, but still nice if using a party with a lots of AoE poison effects such as https://forums.obsid...drainer-wizard/ )
Godlike racial talents are tricky because they are meant to replace Racial Talents AND Headgears. Headgears expected level of power scale with levels. This implies Godlike Racial talent should scale with level too, and this what has been done for Moon and Fire ones. I think only Death and Nature Godlikes currently deserve a scaling buff.
Death Godlike : +25% damage +5% per 3 levels above 1 against target under 25% HP (up to +50%)
+50% damages is impressive but applies only to around a quarter of foes. So it is close to 12,5% damages bonus. You can expect 3-4 Might from an endgame headgear so it is quite close. Might comes with healing and fortitude too, but Death Godlike synergize well with On Kill effects (Barbs and Paladins like it). So I think it would be balanced.
Nature Godlike : +3 Mig / +2 Dex / +2 Con when under (50% +5% per 3 levels above 1) of Total HP (up to under 75% HP)
+7 Stat bonus, even conditional, is quite a deal (to be compared to the 3/4 stat points you can expect from a headgear.). The problem is that is was very unconvenient to activate, even more than human bonus. Making the bonus easier to activate at high levels would solve the problem.
II – Resolve & Constitution Balance :
Resolve : -3% duration of negative effects per Resolve point (hard capped at 75% for 35 Resolve)
Resolve feels a bit supbar. I think the easiest way is to add the Hostile Effect Duration reduction from PoE2.
Please note that the cap would be implemented slightly differently from PoE2 (where all stats are simply hard capped at 35).
Crown for the faithfuls : +10 Resolve down from +25 Resolve
Side effects of Resolve Buff : Crown for the Faithfuls would become OP (given that it is already one of the strongest spell). So it is required to nerf a bit the Bonus Resolve from it.
Note that -30% Hostile Effects duration from Crown would be incredibly powerful too even if arguably less straightforward than Will, Def and Concentration bonus from 15 Resolve points.
Other Resolve Buffs may stay as they are.
Constiturion: +3% healing received per Constitution point
As it was recently suggested on PoE2 forum.
III – Rogue Balance :
Rogue is widely viewed as the weakest class for 2 main reasons :
- Its abilities are mostly limited to Single Target DPS
- Rogue Single Target DPS is high, but not so much higher than other classes (especially Ranger with Twin Arrows and Spiritshifted Druids)
The nature of the changes I am proposing below are the following :
- Emphasizes even more the role of Single Target DPS of rogues, especially Spike Damages (very High damages for limited time). Better special attacks are suitable for this purpose.
- Give Rogue a trump card (refer to Feign Death buff below)
- Numerical upgrades for a couple of mehish abilities
- Replace all “per Rest” by “per Encounter” abilities as it is another of my objectives.
I don't think other classes need that much of a buff. Fighter could be buffed a bit too, but I did it among “per rest” and “various” changes (Refer to Clear Out and Charge buffs).
Dirty Fighting : 15% Hit to Crit (up from 10%)
Abilities are usually better than their derived Talent. That's why I propose to change Dirty Fighting to make it better than the derived Vicious Fighting. Also I found Dirty Fighting to be a bit weak.
Deep Wounds : Make them Stackable
This one has been required by players for a long time.
Finishing Blow : 2x Encounter
Why not only 1x per Encounter ? Because it is essentially a “Boss Fight” ability. Changing it from 2x per Rest to 1x per Encounter would actually be a nerf.
Also picking both Finishing and Devasting Blows cost 1 Ability and 1 Talent. It has to be worthwhile.
Finally, changing it 2x Ecounter is a way to emphasize Rogue Single Target Spike DPS. So I thought it would be great like this.
Riposte : 30% on Miss and Graze (up from 20% on Miss and 30% on Graze)
This one has been required by players for a long time too.
Fearsome Strike : 1x Encounter, afflictions duration set to 20s (up from 15s)
It is part of Strikes buff.
Withering Strike : 2x Encounter
It is also part of Strikes buff.
Shadow Step : Duration 15s (cancellable, up from 6s)
I wanted this ability to be really convenient. The 20% damages bonus adds up, even if it does not stack with Deflecting Assault. But I think it could be seen as an alternative to it.
Feign Death : Prone for 3s (down from 10s)
The new Rogue trump card.
It is currently 6s of non-cancellable invibility, which also provide bonus additional damages with Backstab. The problem is that these 10s of self-incapacitation didn't make sense for such a high level ability.
3s of incapacitation + 6s of invisibility with additional damages (both buffed by INT) should be a good reason to pick a Rogue.
Shadowing beyond : 1x Encounter
This one has also been required by players for a long time.
IV – Per Rest Suppression :
a) Vancian Casting :
Per Rest Vancian Casting was completely removed from PoE2. Casters basically get 2 spells per level per encounter, except for their highest Spell Level for which they get only one. I could have proposed the same.
However, spells are a bit stronger in PoE1 in my opinion and can't be “lost” due to interruption. Therefore I thought Vancian Casters should get a bit less spell in PoE1 than in PoE2. I like having a game a bit harder, where you have to think twice before using your strongest abilities. So I propose something based on Spell Mastery Breakpoints.
All available Spell Levels : 1x Encounter
Mastery Removed : Removed, but replaced by an additional per encounter cast on the Spell Mastery Level
At level 9, 2x Encounter Spell Level I Casts.
At level 11, 2x Encounter Spell Level II Casts.
At level 13, 2x Encounter Spell Level III Casts.
At level 15, 2x Encounter Spell Level IV Casts.
With this change, a Lvl 15-16 casters will have a total of 2x Spells for level I-IV and 1x Spell for level V- VIII. Anwyay, I think this won't make casters weak compared to other classes.
Additional Spell Talents : Spell Talent for Spell Level I, II, III, IV give 1x Encounter cast instead of 1x Rest.
This is a way to offer spellcasters more ressources if they want to specialize toward it.
b) Other Class Changes :
The rule of thumb is the following :
1 per Rest : 1- per encounter
2 per Rest : 1 per encounter
3 per Rest : 1+ per encounter
4 per Rest : Does not exist anyway.
5 per Rest : 2 per encounter
1- / 1+ means the ability might have to be adjusted (for example lower / greater duration)
Nevertheless, another factors have to be taken into consideration.
A situational ability worths more as “Per Rest with a high number” of cast than as “Per Encounter ability with a lower number of cast”. When you really have to use it, you want a higher number of casts while spamming it each fight isn't as worthy.
The best example is “Deprive the Unworthy”. This ability is strong but very situational. I thought it would be Okay to put it at 2x Encounter.
Finally, I am a bit more generous with abilities that needed a buff such as Mortifications.
- Barbarian :
Wild Sprint : 2x Encounter
I thought 2x cast per encounter won't hurt, especially for people who also select Powerful Sprint.
Barbaric Shout : 1x Encounter
- Chanter : None
- Cipher : None
Bear Roar : 1x Encounter
Wolf knock Down : 1x Encounter
Cat Flurry : 1x Encounter, Duration halved
(to balance with forms with 2x Rest ability)
Stag Carnage : 1x Encounter, Duration halved
(to balance with forms with 2x Rest ability)
Clear Out : 2x Encounter
This is basically a Fighter Buff. Fighters are usually seen as a bit weak (even if not as much as Rogue). I wanted to give them something that makes them shine a bit more. They are the only Martial Class with an AoE CC, so I thought it would be good if they were better at it.
Unbending : 1x Encounter, set to 20s (up from 15s)
- Monk :
Clarity of Agony : 1x Encounter, set to 15s (up from 10s)
I buffed it a bit more than my “rule of thumb” would suggest because I think it is a slightly situational ability (it is especially good for the hardest fights)
Mortifications : 3x Encounter
It needed a buff.
- Paladin :
Deprive the Unworthy : 2x Encounter
Hastening Exhortations : 2x Encounter, set to 20s (down from 30s)
- Priest :
All God talents with Special Spells : Special spells 1x EncounterThey needed a slight buff compared to Skaen Talent.
- Ranger :
Binding Roots : 2x Encounter
Revive Companion : 1x Encounter
Master's Call : 1x Encounter, Prone Duration set to 8s.
- Rogue : Refer to Rogue Rebalance
- Wizard :
Arcane Veil : 1x Encounter
- Generic Talents :
Envenomed Strike : 1x Encounter, Venom set to 12s/60 raw damages.
V – Various Changes :
Relentless Storm : Set to Spell Level VII
This one might be the weirdest change on this list.
The reason is that Druid Spell Level VII is pretty bad while Spell Level V is awesome. So I wanted to make Spell Level VII better and Spell Level V a bit less “crowded”.
It sounds like a nerf but it is supposed to be an endgame buff. Spell Level V is so awesome (Plague of Insects and Earth Talon...) that I don't think it would even be a real problem for druids level 9-12.
Relentless Storm deserves to be Spell Level VII anyway.
Enigma's Charm : Set to fast cast (as for Whispers of Treasons)
Once upon a time, Whispers of Treasons was Slow Casting and so was Enigma's Charm. Whispers of Treasons was set to fast cast, but not Enigma's Charm. How unfair.
I like this talent because it gives CC option to all classes. I also love the trope of a Warrior with a natural Psion talent.
Charge : Full attack against main target with normal accuracy (instead of a weirdly lowered one)
Currently Charge triggers a Full Attack against main target, but accuracy is bugged and suffers penalty for no reason.
Charge is one of the trump card of the Fighter class, even if not as flashy as Sacred Immolation for Paladin. This small change would help making Fighter on par with other classes. I really think that 2x buffed Charge and 2x Clear Out per encounter are the offensive tools that Fighters need in addition to their formidable defensive abilities.
Edited by Elric Galad, 17 November 2018 - 02:13 AM.