What are conditions/negatives do you believe are fair, to make a class operating under perfect conditions more powerful? How much does your answer change if the game mechanics shift to/away from PvE/PvP?
- Probably the most popular one would be difficulty curve. After all if you need to spend some 20 hours just to understand how to properly use your classes twitch/conditional abilities you should get some reward for it, especially when most other classes just need a few hours to learn.
- Time investment is still pretty popular. Leveling systems, Rune systems, and Grind systems of all sort.
- Next one is conditional power. For instance your class is below the average power tier, but when you toss your spell breaker at a mage it turns into an empowering experience as you take out that mage with ease. In some cases it could be something like "Why did you expect to win against a druid in a forest?".
- Requiring ammo when other classes don't. Doesn't see much use in modern MMOs, but it was popular a long while back and still is in some text based games / MUDS.
- Easy to interrupt, counter or requires support. That channelling mage can do some amazing things when left to their own devices, but throw any type of damage at them and they'll never be able to cast even their simplest spells, maybe if you have a long term DOT ability you might be able to lock them out of their magic abilities the whole fight. Don't fight a tower/stationary-pet mage under their tower.
- requires you to utterly lack some type of ability. For instance in a movement heavy game, your character would find themselves without a good escape ability. Perhaps in a Crowd Control heavy game, to gain that awesome ability you'd need to take up your self CC cleanse ability slot.
- Ability requires multiple people. For instance you make use of "shield wall" abilities that become more defensively powerful the more people that use the ability in the group.
- only a subset of people can use the ability. For instance only the guild leader/party leader can use the ability, the first person to solve a puzzle gets a slightly more powerful version of an ability, the first guild to take down a raid boss gain stat bonuses to their looted gear from the dungeon.
- The thing isn't fun to play. We've all seen this in some games where X thing just isn't fun or involving, and is granted a bit of power in return for it.
- Requires some sort of extra knowledge, or steps. For instance you know that if you spent time in a volcano in the past day, your fire spells get a "hidden" damage bonus that isn't revealed anywhere on the user interface.
- It's not a DPS class, or is a respond to the enemy class. Healers are given quite a bit of power in return for only being able to respond to incoming fire. Quite a few classes give up a lot of DPS in return for having access to some outstanding crowd control.
- It doesn't affect the fight. For instance classes that affect quest rewards, have easier access to crafting, doesn't need to buy consumables, and similar.
Personally I'm curious what a lot of people think. I know there have been quite of bit of complaints about sameness. But when it comes down to combating that "sameness" how much power are you willing to give up to someone else, especially in cases where that power might be used against you (either directly in PvP, or indirectly to gain monetary/cultural/speed bonuses in PvE).
I also think that in a PvE game the devs should be allowed to go pretty crazy if they want to. For PvPer I think there are games where power gimmicks work pretty well (EVE is a good example), though they should come at a cost that rapidly increases the more you attempt to use.
Practice doesn't make perfect, practice makes permanent.
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