+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 26

Thread: (PvE-DPS) critique of the soul system

  1. #1
    Soulwalker sirkorgan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    17

    Post (PvE-DPS) critique of the soul system

    Since entering the PvE endgame of Rift as a damage-dealer I have become disappointed by the supposed unrivaled diversity of the ascended class system. It has been my experience, in this game and in others, that a socially responsible player plays the build that is most effective - or reasonably close to it - for their role. In Rift, despite having an impressive variety of ways to play each calling, only very few soul combinations are actually top performers. In addition, those combinations tend to be strongly multiclassed and, in the case of melee builds, macro-heavy due to overly complicated attack chains (from all the roots) reduced into one or two primary macros in order to be performed effectively. The result is that there is really only one "viable" build build per calling unless one deliberately chooses to be below par as a damage dealer (or if the encounter mechanics require you to choose a particular situational build).

    What we see in raid DPS builds is that
    Warrior is synonymous with Beastmaster,
    Rogue is synonymous with Ranger,
    Cleric is synonymous with Druid,
    Mage is synonymous with Stormcaller,
    and none of these builds have more than 32 points in the primary soul. Three of them depend on heavy macros.

    What disappoints me about this situation is as follows:
    • Class diversity is diluted because there are no deep specs which compete adequately with shallow specs, you are just a Rogue/Warrior/Mage/Cleric DPS, not a Nightblade/Paragon/Warlock/Shaman for example.
    • Because of the dominance of shallow multiclassed specs, there are many, many abilities available, including almost all of the core attacks designed to carry each soul. The result is that the optimal "rotation" is unfocused and complicated...
    • and since the attack chain is so complicated that nobody could keybind it effectively, it's stuffed into a macro which then compresses it into 1-3 buttons down from potentially 15+ and at this point it is not complex enough to be interesting to play. Even if you extract cooldowns and reactives from the macro to add more buttons to press, you are still riding that one main button, which IMO is not engaging gameplay, not to mention at that point you are creating artificial complexity to address a design problem which while possibly a solution for challenge-seekers, is not a solution for people like myself who just want fun and distinct playstyles evocative of the soul we've specialized in.

    What I would like to see as a solution to the above:
    • 51 point builds being not only viable, but the standard for any particular niche. Multiclassing from a min/max perspective would be for flexibility, to expand the niche of a particular soul by complementing it with another. This does not mean a multiclassed build cannot still be the "best" build, but it should mean that a "pure" build would still be competitive enough to be "viable" regardless.
    • Reduce the baseline power of the core attacks in the roots of each soul and tie them into point investment through passives and scaling talents in order to emphasize and focus the attack chains in each build to primarily use the abilities of the dominant soul(s). This will have the side effect of reducing macro dependence by reducing the number of buttons needing keybinds in order to achieve high DPS. This is already done to some degree by some souls - for example the Inquisitor - and I think that more of it more consistently would be a good thing.
    • Each soul should have it's own signature gameplay. For some souls this is already the case with pets, sab charges, convictions, lurking decay, procs, etc. However, too often a deep point investment provides dubious utility instead of emphasizing the unique theme and power of the soul, or tries but does not deliver. For an example near and dear to me, the Shaman soul's Jolt ability is probably it's most powerful element at 16-21 points despite Massive Blow being the signature attack - and yet a 51 point Shaman build is subpar, while the druid/shaman/inq multiclass depends on jolt as a massive portion of its output as the dominant cleric DPS build. I want to be able to see a competitive deep Shaman build and a competitive deep Druid build, with distinct playstyles instead of the macro mishmash of abilities that the melee cleric is currently.

    I have become a fan of Trion and Rift, but ultimately it is my experience that the current soul design does not adequately provide, in the min/max endgame, the level of playstyle customization that Trion advertises, and it's getting me down. If this were to be addressed then I would have nothing of consequence to complain about in Rift (beyond being a carebear who regrettably rolled on a PvP server).

    Since I play mostly DPS cleric I have used mostly cleric examples. If you think I'm way off base I would be interested in knowing why you think so, or if you have further examples of the ills I mentioned for other souls or callings please feel free to contribute (for science!).
    Kierin<Basher Inc> @ Seastone-Defiant

  2. #2
    Plane Touched
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    281

    Default

    I think many people would like to have more real options for their soul choices. And IMO you're right on that pure (51pt) specs should become more viable. However I would not say that they should become the standards, as that would just turn the current situation around. You should have the freedom to spec the way you want.

    Personally I love to play my 51pt elementalist. The soul works quite well once you get some gear, but I still find my dps ~20% below the current "best" spec (stormcaller/elem). Maybe because I don't play perfectly, but other mages have reported similar results in the mage forums.

    IMO the soul is viable. It could use a slight boost in damage (and several changes to be more comfortable to use, like non chance-based pet buff). And it certainly is "good enough" to warrant a raid spot (meaning, taking in a good elementalist should not make your raid fail dps checks suddenly).

    But, it is currently not able to match up to the top dps spec. That alone makes it "non-viable" for most serious raiders. I'm in the happy situation that my guild does not force us to play certain specs, although as we progress further into GSB and ROS our raid leaders are starting to "encourage" us to switch to the top spec.

    A while ago Trion announced plans to make the 51pt specs better. I hope these plans are still in the works and not scrapped, and also that they will not take an eternity to implement. If the elementalist becomes more comparable to the top dps through the changes, I will be happy.

  3. #3
    Soulwalker
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    16

    Default

    Firstly I think there is more variety than you are suggesting, particularly in the rogue calling (maybe not in the others). And secondly, why are you surprised? The point of min/maxing for 'the best build' is that that particular build is by definition 'the best', and since only one thing can be 'the best' at one time, then there is only ever 4 'best dps builds'. However, you seem to think that only the 'best build' is viable, when this isn't the case. I'd imagine that in your average raiding guild, you forgoing 20 extra dps because you don't want to mash the same macro everyone else is mashing, and would rather play your much more entertaining home-brew build, would probably go unnoticed.

  4. #4
    Telaran remilafo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    58

    Default

    Just indefence of the ROgue classes....

    There at 3 perhaps 4 ENd game DPS spec out right now that are all really on par with each other.

    Yes the ranger is one of them... 31R/18MM/17sin
    Saboteur is the other --> 44sab/20Sin/2R
    Bladedancer is the other one --> 27BD/Sin/NB
    and just for you a PURE 51 Marksman build also does GREAT single target DPS...

    this is just an FYI, im not debating or arguing your points.
    Xerise, Eliana, Eurydice, Rissa and December
    http://www.direman.com/everwas/index.php

  5. #5
    Rift Disciple
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    163

    Default

    I don't think it's the soul system that's the problem - I think it's because people keep reading/hearing that those souls you mentioned are the "best practice" so everyone just automatically goes to them without any thought (humans are basically sheep at heart). Very few people actually try to learn and master non-standard builds on their own. Also, everybody wants to shine with "the best" DPS build. Nobody wants to play the "probably second best but drops the boss just as good" DPS build.

  6. #6
    RIFT Guide Writer Redcruxs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    3,935

    Default

    @OP - you are assuming that it would be better if each soul functioned as its own class. this is not necessarily the case

    there are only 4 classes in this game, mage rogue warrior cleric, each one is made up of the 8 souls, each soul is a part of the whole and if you are only useing 1 soul which effectively makes you a "warlock" or a "stormcaller" then you are not playing your class to the fullest


    if all 51 point builds were better than the split builds then how would that be any different than it is now? one would inevitably be better and that class would be synonymous with that soul, same as now. exept that now you have less flexibility because instead of having 2 or 3 souls you only use 1. that seems like a waste of the soul system to me

  7. #7
    Shield of Telara
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    763

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by remilafo View Post
    and just for you a PURE 51 Marksman build also does GREAT single target DPS...
    It does good single target dps, but isn't actually competitive with a hybrid build. I am fairly well geared for greenscale and can hit about 800-850 on a stand and fight style boss. Our melee rogue on that same fight will hit 1000-1100 dps. My stats are actually higher then his.
    Tsarin - Sunrest (PVP-RP) - Eth DPS Cleric (50) - Static

  8. #8
    Ascendant Dinadass's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    2,854

    Default

    Rogues don't really have this problem after the last patch. There are easily half a dozen different specs that do similar sustained DPS, and there are even more that do slightly less but are still sufficient for any GSB/RoS fight. Options for AOE are a bit more limited and it would be nice if that could be improved.

    Hopefully the other classes are balanced soon to have a similar number of options, if not more.

    <Ascendant> 13/13 Seastone Defiant

  9. #9
    Shield of Telara
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    763

    Default

    Yes, but as the OP stated those are all hybrid specs. 51 MM does nice damage but it isn't competitive to a hybrid spec. No one is going to take a 51pts in ranger, bladedance, nightblade or assassin into a raid. They just aren't good at all.
    Tsarin - Sunrest (PVP-RP) - Eth DPS Cleric (50) - Static

  10. #10
    Ascendant Dinadass's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    2,854

    Default

    51 Assassin is viable for raids. The other souls do tend to be forced into too much utility/defensive stuff to still do top tier DPS, but I don't really see a fix to that.

    If you want to maximize DPS, you choose a main soul and hit the sweet spot for maxing out DPS abilities in it (26-32 points generally) and then pick up either one secondary soul with a similar level of investment or split your points between two souls with 10-20 points in each.

    If a 51 point build could do the same DPS as a hybrid build specifically made to maximize DPS, everyone would use the 51 point build because it also has a lot of utility, defensive things, etc. I suppose it's just personal opinion; right now 51 point builds are pretty popular in PvP and hybrid builds are stronger in PvE generally speaking, which I like. If 51 point builds were changed to be top-tier PvE builds, there really wouldn't be any situation that a hybrid build would excel in.
    Last edited by Dinadass; 05-27-2011 at 07:45 AM.

    <Ascendant> 13/13 Seastone Defiant

  11. #11
    Ascendant
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    3,116

    Default

    I dont mind that there is a "best build", that will always happen.

    It bothers me that the second/third best build(s) are so far out of competition with the best one.

    Really the only way you can have a "home brew" spec that even matters is to take the the "best" build and change a few points.

  12. #12
    Telaran Kooby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Philadelphia
    Posts
    64

    Default

    As a Mage main, I couldn't agree more with the OP.

    Mage's have 3 viable specs for raiding but only one for pure DPS. For those who might hint that rolling in as a Storm/Ele is sheepish, I beg to differ. The reason is simple it flat out does more DPS than any other mage spec. There have been numerous people who have done detailed testing and it is just fact. We are also not talking ~5% gain here either its more like 20-25% more.

    Now some might say well you have 3 viable specs for endgame for your class you should be happy. I would respond that I am. But that doesn't mean we can't hope for better. Mages also have one entire soul that is completely dead, Dominator. By dead I mean that it has zero viability in any aspect of the game at any point distribution.

    The OP is correct, Trion desperately needs to do some work on the trees in the upcoming patches.

  13. #13
    Shadowlander
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    34

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by sirkorgan View Post
    What disappoints me about this situation is as follows:
    • Class diversity is diluted because there are no deep specs which compete adequately with shallow specs, you are just a Rogue/Warrior/Mage/Cleric DPS, not a Nightblade/Paragon/Warlock/Shaman for example.
    • Because of the dominance of shallow multiclassed specs, there are many, many abilities available, including almost all of the core attacks designed to carry each soul. The result is that the optimal "rotation" is unfocused and complicated...
    • and since the attack chain is so complicated that nobody could keybind it effectively, it's stuffed into a macro which then compresses it into 1-3 buttons down from potentially 15+ and at this point it is not complex enough to be interesting to play. Even if you extract cooldowns and reactives from the macro to add more buttons to press, you are still riding that one main button, which IMO is not engaging gameplay, not to mention at that point you are creating artificial complexity to address a design problem which while possibly a solution for challenge-seekers, is not a solution for people like myself who just want fun and distinct playstyles evocative of the soul we've specialized in.

    What I would like to see as a solution to the above:
    • 51 point builds being not only viable, but the standard for any particular niche. Multiclassing from a min/max perspective would be for flexibility, to expand the niche of a particular soul by complementing it with another. This does not mean a multiclassed build cannot still be the "best" build, but it should mean that a "pure" build would still be competitive enough to be "viable" regardless.
    • Reduce the baseline power of the core attacks in the roots of each soul and tie them into point investment through passives and scaling talents in order to emphasize and focus the attack chains in each build to primarily use the abilities of the dominant soul(s). This will have the side effect of reducing macro dependence by reducing the number of buttons needing keybinds in order to achieve high DPS. This is already done to some degree by some souls - for example the Inquisitor - and I think that more of it more consistently would be a good thing.
    • Each soul should have it's own signature gameplay. For some souls this is already the case with pets, sab charges, convictions, lurking decay, procs, etc. However, too often a deep point investment provides dubious utility instead of emphasizing the unique theme and power of the soul, or tries but does not deliver. For an example near and dear to me, the Shaman soul's Jolt ability is probably it's most powerful element at 16-21 points despite Massive Blow being the signature attack - and yet a 51 point Shaman build is subpar, while the druid/shaman/inq multiclass depends on jolt as a massive portion of its output as the dominant cleric DPS build. I want to be able to see a competitive deep Shaman build and a competitive deep Druid build, with distinct playstyles instead of the macro mishmash of abilities that the melee cleric is currently.
    I strongly agree with the weakness of 51 point trees, and will provide a couple key points to consider:

    1) Most "scaling" abilities max out around 30 points. I'm a warrior, and have 4 dps trees. Champion (bonus physical damage with a 2h), Riftblade (bonus non-physical damage), and Paragon (bonus physical damage while dual-wielding) all have a low-in-tree scaling 5 point talent. All 3 have the scaling talent max out at 31 points. These talents are *required* by your 51 point build (by virtue of requiring everything), yet provide no further benefit from the last 40% of your points. If these talents were too good at 51, then scale them down. I'd rather see them "weak" for 26 point builds then encourage 31 and 32 point builds above all else.

    2) Abilities gained after 32 points tend to be high-cooldown and/or niche use abilities. A 51 point riftblade build will be using primarily abilities gained within the first 8 points of their build. However, RB is one of the BEST done 51 point trees for warriors (which is kinda sad). Going that deep into the build should change the fundamental play style of the build from 32 points. It should be opening up a new (more optimzied/in-theme) spammable ability. It should be opening up a new finisher. This way you have variety! It should be opening up an ability that makes you feel awesome and unique. RB has the third of these with Avatar of the Rift. RB also gets an 8-second cd 8s buff attack move, and a self-healing blade enchant (sweet for grinding and pvp [if the internal cd gets dropped down some], useless when raiding). But let's look at Champion. 31 points gets you your massive stun finisher. 32 points gets you a new Mark (meh typically, but would be super sweet if not on GCD). Big incentives to hit 30-32 range. 38 gets you a 15s cd high-power-usage attack that grants 2 attack points. Or you could put points in Paragon and have a 50% to get a 2nd attack point on EVERY attack. 44 points gets you a channeled/can-move ability that dishes out aoe damage in front of you. Except in PvP it's useless cuz people just run through you and the swings always come at the wrong time. And it's damage really isn't that much higher than just using your normal aoe attacks. Oh, and 2 minute cooldown. And 51 points gets you a new bearing. Sure it's better than the other ones, but you can get everything the bearing gives you WHILE using another bearing, by using those 19 points in another tree (going from your 2-10 point paragon build to 15+).

    3) Too many good abilities are at low ranks in the trees because they are "core" and Trion wants low level players to have access to them. Meanwhile, most tier 3-5 abilities feel kinda "crammed in" or poorly thought out. Look at Warlord. awesome mitigation talents early in the tree (but nothing else). Then tiers 3 and 4 provide your support role. Then tier 5 and 6 give you some more mitigation and support. But if you look at their root tree, they get all their support core talents super-early, and the deeper root is dedicated to tanking. But 51 warlord is flat out worse at tanking than any hybrid using warlord + another tank soul, because it just doesn't have strong enough mitigation mechanics. So since all the super tanky stuff is deep into the tree, nobody ever wants any of it. Oh, also, Warlord buffs are SoL due to Archons and Bards doing it all better. The only thing a Warlord is good for in a raid is Spotter's Order. Which is, of course, 2 points into the tree.

  14. #14
    Champion j3w3l's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Brisvegas
    Posts
    520

    Default

    with the new changes rogue have enough options to provide comparable dps, range/melee or combination

    every other soul is bound to the one spec for decent dps
    i hear your pain with the cleric dps spec. i'm not a melee person and definately dont like having a pet and so would settle for a dps drop to play the class i like but a 200-300dps drop for doing so is a bit harsh (considerable more after raid buffs)
    .
    So long rift, may your potential someday be realised

  15. #15
    Rift Disciple
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    111

    Default

    You do have a point, however rogues have a good 3 specs that do great damage, and ranger is hardly the only choice they have, Sab and BD builds work just as well if not better.

+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts