Thoughts on the traits/skill trees.

By on April 14, 2013 2:33:51 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

tjashen

Join Date 03/2009
+55

I'm still getting back up to speed with Elemental (LH).

I've seen a few threads now about Champions being a little too weak in the later stages of the game, and the skills trees being a little too 'deep/long' for some classes.

Another thing I've noticed is that I'm not picking a lot of the tree paths, because another tree path gives a better benefit for my style of play.  This is not necessarily a bad thing, but if a particular tree path isn't being chosen by most players, well it's kind of pointless to have it to begin with.

So, anyways, I'm thinking that the following ideas might help with the 'compression of skills trees' idea, and help with game balance a bit.  Any one of these ideas would help.

1) Lower XP requirements for Champions to advance a level - this will increase level gains, which incidentally increases HPs a bit (as you will gain them more quickly), and give you more skill choices.  Not my favorite idea, but easiest to implement.

2) Additional XP awards.  I've seen it mentioned a few times now that +1 XP a turn would help.  This isn't too OTT, but will allow 'parked' Champions to gain levels while administering Cities.  I'd also argue for an additional +1 XP/Turn when administering a city, so that Champions stationed in cities gain +2 XP/turn instead of 1, but that's open to discussion of course.

3) Choosing 2 traits every level instead of 1.  This allows more of the skill trees to come into play.  This would be limited a bit, in that you would still only be allowed to choose 1 trait on any given skill tree (i.e. no '2 deep' picks) on any given level gain, but then more of those other traits will come into play.  This increases the overall value of Sovereigns/Champions in the process, especially in the later game.

4) Increase HP gains for level gains.  I think this needs to be more generally applied though, i.e. any creature/unit/hero gaining a level gains more HP than they are currently.  Specifically for Champions/Heroes, though, so they are more survivable in the later game.

 

Those are my thoughts.  And discuss...

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April 14, 2013 11:18:57 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

1) The problem is how XP is now split.  I agree with an XP split, but the existing split is a bit harsh.

2) There are already buildings that do that, adding another one wouldn't be a bad thing 

3) Disagree.  I would like to get an automatic tree pick after determining a path.  It would be helpful and IMO more immersive.  And maybe a Free pick from the Traits Tree every "x" levels.  Tree progression feels horribly slow.

4) Agree with this.  Even an extra +1 HP/Level would help a lot.

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April 15, 2013 3:46:52 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

1) has been spammed to death on this forum. This is basically universally agreed upon already.

3) I like, it reminds me of bonus feats that Fighters get in D&D. The idea is that every few levels (not every level - that's too much) you get a bonus "feat" or trait, but this bonus trait comes from some diminished pool of traits which depend entirely on your chosen path/the traits you've taken so far. That way, you're still gaining that nice little bonus ability every few levels, but not to the extent that you can max out your class tree at a really fast rate.

Mind you, with the way things are right now, maxing out your class tree faster wouldn't actually be that bad, and would, I'd argue, be an improvement.

4) Sort of. I think HP is a weak fix to the problems heroes currently face in scaling into late game. There are other options I like better.

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April 15, 2013 7:27:51 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

1) and 2) are very good suggestions, but the amount of xp is very good in 0.80

3) is in my opinion not needed if the heroes level faster and the trees are shorter

4) is dangerous, because increasing the hp makes some abilities (poison, healing, ...) less useful

I think it would help if medium sized heroes and monsters get the evasion ability, that reduces the number of lost hit points (not the damage) of an attack by an enemy group by 50 %. Assassins could get the improved evasion ability that reduces the number of lost hit points of an attack by an enemy group by 75 %.

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April 15, 2013 9:32:01 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums


Either leveling needs to be faster or the trees need to be shorter ... or maybe a bit of both.

They did look at XP a bit.  In FE the multiplier was .075.  In the early LE beta the multiplier was set to .05.  In [.80] verson of the beta it got bumped up to  .06. 

I'm going to go on a limb and guess that one reason for the change was the fact that the xp gain traits can be chosen and aren't random anymore.  They clearly are trying to respond to board sentament by altering the trees and slightly increasing the XP.  That said I don't think that they've gone far enough.

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April 15, 2013 9:51:33 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting vanderbilt_grad,
I'm going to go on a limb and guess that one reason for the change was the fact that the xp gain traits can be chosen and aren't random anymore.  They clearly are trying to respond to board sentament by altering the trees and slightly increasing the XP.  That said I don't think that they've gone far enough.

I don't like the XP gain traits. They should be removed entirely, because they are about just as unfun an ability as you can get. Being forced to take two traits (3 if I'm a mage) just to level up at some reasonable rate is not really that enjoyable. Increase XP gain, remove Potential traits.

That said, I think Potential I is a fantastic trait option for units, especially if you want to combine it with Brute and things like that to make some fast-leveling elite unit groups.

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April 16, 2013 4:41:38 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

XP exp game needs increased as currently takes for ever.

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April 17, 2013 12:16:30 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums


I like the idea of picking one trait from the general tree and one trait from the specialized tree every level-up. This would double the pace of the development of heroes.  I think the xp multiplier traits should be reduced to maybe one or two. I hate feeling pushed to pick potential to speed progression instead of something that actually adds to the character and ability of the hero.

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April 17, 2013 1:34:44 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

One big issue I have between the hero types is that I think the defender and warrior use of armour is backwards.

 

The defender is there to boost your army (resistances/etc) and to stay behind the army (guard helps).  The warrior is meant to be in the line, not hiding in a corner.

 

So switch the defender and warriors armour abilities.  Warriors should get chain for free and have easy access (by level 5ish) to plate armour.  Defenders should have chain later and plate even further.

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April 17, 2013 1:42:45 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

The defender is suppose to be the "tank" character, being able to take hits and the warrior is a damage dealer.  The armor seems fine to me in this dynamic.  

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April 17, 2013 2:32:29 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Lord Xia,

The defender is suppose to be the "tank" character, being able to take hits and the warrior is a damage dealer.  The armor seems fine to me in this dynamic.  

 

I'm not sure I agree with that assessment. 

 

Assassin - Glass Cannon

Warrior - Front line unit able to stand up to, and give damage to, units.

Defender - Booster in defense and healing/etc for other units - not a front line unit

Commander - Booster for initiative and accuracy for other units - not a front line unit

Mage - Glass Cannon, and/or whatever other specialization towards an area they take - not a front line unit

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April 17, 2013 2:36:28 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I am pretty sure the facts in this case are with me, good sir!    

 

You may want the defender to be something different, but it is the damage absorbing class.

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April 17, 2013 2:46:37 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

i think the new defender tree supports both, the tank role and a more support oriented role. which is probably a good decision, since the paths should work for all difficulty settings. the tank spec (ironskin/endurance, plus some defense and plate spec) is probably more viable on lower settings, while at harder difficulties it's probably wise to go straight for the auras and let them hang back and support their armies with the AoE shield bash, guard and the dodge and defense auras. not really sure about the whole magic defense line that ends in the armor sentinel summon and the stun ability. those two perks are good, but you have to pick an awful lot of spell resistance along the way which is pretty useless in all fights that don't involve heavy spellcasting opposition.

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April 17, 2013 3:05:57 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Azunai_,

i think the new defender tree supports both.

 

No disagreeing with me!!!  Okay, I kind of see your point...

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April 17, 2013 4:14:22 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Lord Xia,

I am pretty sure the facts in this case are with me, good sir!    

 

You may want the defender to be something different, but it is the damage absorbing class.

 

To be fair, the list I made was what I think the classes should focus on, rather than what is actual.

 

But yeah, defender = tank only lasts until a unit type can smash your face in... which is pretty fast.  I don't mind those traits being in the trait tree for defender, as they help in situations where you need to add to swarm bonuses or fill in a gap.  But it shouldn't be a solo tanky plan.

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April 17, 2013 6:14:29 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Definiently want to see more XP going the way of champions, whether it's lowing the xp split penalty or give more/better options for champions and sovs to gain XP outside of combat.

Not sure if granting more traits per (x number of) level(s) is the best answer for the skills trees though. I think I would rather see them made shorter, and most of the stats currently gained from taking traits be part of leveling as that class (i.e. a Warrior get +1 attack every x levels, a Defender +1 Defence every y levels, and so on), instead of things you have to take the new abilites and passives that actually change how that champion will fuction in combat in some way. 'Course, if you split all the traits between abilites/passives and stat bonuses and gave skill points that can only be used for one or the other, you could get a similar result.

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April 20, 2013 3:53:20 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Foefaller,
'Course, if you split all the traits between abilites/passives and stat bonuses and gave skill points that can only be used for one or the other, you could get a similar result.

Skill points or something equivalent have been suggested a lot on this forum, I believe, and I think they're a pretty good idea. Similar to D&D, our champions should get points to spend on their base stats (attack, defense, health, spell power, etc. - or even have the stat boost automatically determined by the class you choose), and then points to spend on exciting new abilities or traits that have large effects.

It all comes back to the fact that taking "+1 attack" as your huge-super-amazing-level-up-this-doesn't-happen-often-you-know trait is really, really, REALLY underwhelming.

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April 20, 2013 4:16:47 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I think the xp gain is just fine.  Loving this game, and doing epic games, turn off the spell of mastery victory of course.  Its all about pacing.  Starts with first settlement, then moves onto several, leveling them up.  Then finishing the tech tree, working on a military.  Goes onto searching the wild lands, conquering them, settlements.  Finishes with the epic quest arcs.  If you dont have a high level champion or sov by then, your not working hard enough.  The trees also allow for focusing, not intended to do them all, but to specialize.  Think D&D with some strategy.

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April 23, 2013 6:56:48 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting animageous,


Quoting Foefaller, reply 15 'Course, if you split all the traits between abilites/passives and stat bonuses and gave skill points that can only be used for one or the other, you could get a similar result.

Skill points or something equivalent have been suggested a lot on this forum, I believe, and I think they're a pretty good idea. Similar to D&D, our champions should get points to spend on their base stats (attack, defense, health, spell power, etc. - or even have the stat boost automatically determined by the class you choose), and then points to spend on exciting new abilities or traits that have large effects.

It all comes back to the fact that taking "+1 attack" as your huge-super-amazing-level-up-this-doesn't-happen-often-you-know trait is really, really, REALLY underwhelming.

In the original E:WOM, we had stats and stat points.  For some reason, some people here decided that this was bad (encouraging min-maxing, I don't mind this myself), so they were pulled.

I still say that, given you have two skill trees (general tree, plus your chosen path tree), allowing 2 perks per level would be more interesting, with no '2 deep' choices on the same tree on any given level of course. 

Of course, I generally don't get my heroes much above 10th level to begin with, although I haven't won by 'divide and conquer' yet, so I don't see a problem with this, given the large number of perks on the various trees.

Heroes are supposed to be awesome and awe-inspiring, so they need all the help they can get in the current builds.

 

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April 23, 2013 7:24:56 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I would absolutely LOVE if we could reimplement stats to go with skill trees to make the skills about SKILLS not about stats.

Make the general tree be about spell skill level ups and the general traits be repeatable stat point investments.

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April 26, 2013 9:49:07 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Wouldn't it help if you got TWO traits from level 3-7 or so, and only 1 trait every level after that? (Keep xp quantity otherwise exactly as is) That way, leveling and hp gain isn't too easy/fast, but it's worth it to train your champions up 2-3 levels. With the extra few trait choices, they can actually earn a small specialized use. If you want high hp heroes, fine - pick defender/warrior and spend your trait points on endurance and adventurer's boon. 

I think the devs are going for a "group of hero characters" dynamic. The reason it doesn't work now is it's too hard to make your heroes useful and distinct (via traits) due to xp split (which is necessary), so they end up sitting in towns lowering unrest. 

But if I got four traits leveling Bacco The Beggar up just twice (he is recruited at level 3 I believe), he could become just a DECENT warrior instead of a sub-par one sitting around town getting drunk. Then my sovereign, who I want to get to level 15-20, will have to progress more slowly after he breaks level 7.

If I had 3 level five heroes with six trait choices each, they'd hardly be overpowered, but be distinct enough to work well TOGETHER, and I could put them all into one stack, not caring if they never level up after level 5. They'd have a USE, and I would gladly invest the time to level them up twice each, in their own stack, to get to that point.   

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April 26, 2013 4:28:33 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting halmal242,

I would absolutely LOVE if we could reimplement stats to go with skill trees to make the skills about SKILLS not about stats.

Make the general tree be about spell skill level ups and the general traits be repeatable stat point investments.

 

I like this concept.  Take the 'stat only' gains off of the traits trees, and give each hero one or more stat points to raise stats/skills every level, along with the single trait pick.  This would mean an additional dialogue box, but the stat dialog box was around for a long time, so re-implementing it shouldn't be too hard.

Might need to be a post-release patch, however, as the release date is barreling down on us, assuming the developers even like this idea.  And make it 'optional', so the stat haters don't have to deal with it, but those of us wanting more Legendary in our Heroes can take advantage of it.

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April 26, 2013 5:18:39 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

This honestly seems the best course of action in the long run and would make point choices worthwhile.  You would just have to make the repeatable stat increase choices not grey out after use.  Then its either raise a stat point or take a skill.  This would make it an important choice.

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April 26, 2013 10:56:53 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

they could up the champ exp gain by 20% and remove the potential line.  I really dont like these exp perks.

 

otherwise im loving the game.

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April 26, 2013 11:05:13 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Agreed, most traits are just weak or seem like fillers.

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April 27, 2013 11:34:49 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

A small increase in xp gained would already help a lot. 

If the Devs finally get rid of the 'Potential' traits as well, life would be perfect!

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