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Thread: [REVAMP] Deioth's Beastmaster Overhaul

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    Plane Walker Deioth's Avatar
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    Default [REVAMP] Deioth's Beastmaster Overhaul

    It's clear the Warrior calling has problems. No calling is without them, naturally, and there are only a dismal few truly worthwhile pure souls (51 pointers). Of all the callings, however, the warrior is easily the most crippled. The first and most significant problem is Strike Like Iron of the Paragon tree. From here, we've got a severely underperforming soul that ironically is the only "worthwhile" 51 pointer for warriors (Riftblade); a “support” tank soul with next to nothing worth while about it (Warlord); a soul worthless if not for SLI (Paragon); a pet soul good only for the DPS from its pet (Beastmaster); and tank souls in general not worth a single point past mid-tier. After all this, our only good DPS/Burst soul has limited utility, no survivability, and the 1.1 patch made its damage abilities completely inconsistent with each other (Champion)

    All numbers used in suggestions are “sounds good to me” numbers and not to be taken literally. The suggestions should be accepted on their own merits. As well, I understand that every change in the current state of the game would risk making BM a FotM, so they are being made in the assumption other currently lacking souls will be appropriately tweaked.

    Without further ado, here are my recommendations and reasons behind them for Beastmaster. My goals here were to make bleeds the primary source of a BM's damage, change “worthless” talents, put more emphasis into his pet, and also provide the BM with more support features and utility since, given his Bonds, he strikes me as the DPS Support of the Warrior calling.

    Branches

    Tier 1
    Backhanded Blow: 25 Energy, 8 second cooldown, provides AP
    Current Iteration: Weapon + X damage + Y per bleed effect on the target up to 5.
    Suggested Change: Weapon + X damage, causes “Deepened Wounds” which adds 20% weapon damage to each bleed. Now costs 20 energy ~or~ 4 second cooldown. Deepened Wounds lasts 10 seconds.
    Alternative Change: Deepened Wounds instead increases frequency of bleed ticks by 2.
    Reasoning: We have five bleeds (six IF the pet counts), of which, one is caused by a critical, one is a reactive to our pet critting, one is an area effect AP builder, one is a ST finisher, and one is an AoE finisher. In ideal situations (and without explaining a ton of math to make the point) we'd have five bleeds on the target within 12 seconds (or, eight GCDs) which means we can use BHB to its fullest in 13.5. However, none of our bleeds last more than 10 seconds. Furthermore, Power Strike, the Tier 0 AP builder for champions, at the same character level, does approximately 51% more damage than BHB with no bleeds. Beastmasters can consistently apply three bleeds. At three bleeds, the damage evens out, with PS just barely ahead of BHB. This require 6 GCDs to match Power Strike for an additional 5 energy, giving the BHB just enough time if he set up right to use all three. Keep in mind, we need to use an AoE-finisher to do this. At five bleeds, BHB does 25% more damage than PS. It's underperforming. This change would compliment our bleed-heavy, backload damage, giving our bleeds value as our primary damage source and making our low frontload sensible.

    Tier 2

    Tenacious Wounds: Passive
    Current Iteration: Adds 2%/4% bleed damage.
    Suggested Change: Deepened Wounds adds 40%/60% weapon damage. Now requires Rank 1 in BHB.
    Alternative Change: Deepened Wounds adds 3/5 ticks to each bleed. Now requires Rank 1 in BHB.
    Reasoning: Guess what 4% of each bleed, each bleed that lasts 10 seconds to do all of its damage, as a level 46, unbuffed, base damage, causes thanks to Tenacious Wounds? A whole whopping 38. Now, yes, there are buffs, there's attack power, it all can add up, but we need to keep in mind that 38 base is through all five bleeds. Two of them are finishers. The potential damage reduction to a single target, neverminding additional energy costs, should be considered here when balancing other finisher choices. While we'd lose an insignificant amount of AoE DPS, we'd gain where it should count: single-target. Beastmasters have only two area effect abilities, after all. It should also be pointed out that only group PvE content and situational PvP (and that involves even more factors can be discussed here) would provide the opportunity to maximize Tenacious Wounds and apply our full compliment of bleeds. With BHB made useful, Tenacious Wounds should become a critical followup for bleed-heavy builds.

    Bond of Alacrity: Toggle, Aura
    Current Iteration: Increases out of combat runspeed by 10%.
    Suggested Change: Increases runspeed by 10%, in and out of combat.
    Reasoning: The beastmaster, currently, is valuable only for the damage eked out by his pet and by the slight improvement of raw DPS Tearing Slash provides over comparable finishers. He has some support through his bonds and a couple passives, but these are superseded by other, dedicated support souls and builds of other callings. Furthermore, BM is a flat out terrible as a choice in PvP, offering no burst, damage at best comparable rather than noticeably better for something so heavily backloaded, and has nothing for utility beyond maybe detecting stealthed rogues. This would give warriors more choice and more utility for themselves as well as their group if they go onward for Shared Bonds.

    Agile Footwork: Passive
    Current Iteration: Reduces duration of movement impairing effects by 10/20/30/40/50%
    Suggested Change: Reduces impact of movement impairing effects by 10/20/30/40/50%
    Alternative Change: Swap places in the tree with “Primal Senses” (I'll change that one, too) or “Ties That Bind”. Rename to “Scent of Blood” that gives the warrior 1/2/3/4/5 energy each time the pet crits.
    Reasoning: For the suggested change, given the current direction of PvP and diminishing returns (and let's be honest, it's entirely PvP favoring currently and poorly at that even before 1.2 DR), this makes it far more valuable both in PvP and in PvE. Some lesser snares can be effectively neutralized while also using Bond of Alacrity, giving obvious PvP benefits but also helping in major group PvE content to keep the warrior out of damage zones and the like. As for the Alternative Change, this would give BMs an energy build mechanic, making them more attractive hybrids as well as providing for dedicated BMs who would miss out of energy regen talents of other souls while keeping to their core mechanics of pet and bleeds.

    Tier 3
    Protective Instincts: Active, Aura
    Current Iteration: Increases stealth detection of BM and group members.
    Suggested Change: Whenever the Beastmaster dodges or parries, his companion's damage increases by 5% per stack, up to five stacks. Whenever the companion suffers a critical strike, Flesh Rip becomes activated.
    Reasoning: Stealth protection? Even IF Beastmaster was good in PvP, is this really all that valuable? He has no way of actually stopping a stealther, anyway, having no real crowd control. This provides primarily for world PvE but still provide a few extra Flesh Rips in group/mid-late leveling content and keeps true to the pet theme. This is now a useful talent with value in all aspects of the game instead of a glorified and severely limited PvP skill.

    Tier 4
    Summon Greater Primal Companion: Pet Summon
    Just make it orange already, maybe make it larger, too.

    Primal Senses: Passive
    Current Iteration: Increases level of stealth detection by 1/2/3.
    Suggested Change: Provides an additional 1/3/5 percentage points to the pet's armor/damage increase while under the effect of protective/enraged companion, as well as increases the damage aura from Enraged by an additional 1/2/3 percentage points and armor aura from Protective by 40/80/120%. The negative impact of these buffs is reduced by 10/30/50%.
    Reasoning: Again, stealth detection, extremely limited PvP benefit. This change will further contribute to a Beastmaster's support of his team and further emphasize the value of his pet, buffing it to make it more crucial as part of the Beastmaster's repertoire.

    Tier 5
    Kinship: 30 energy, 10 seconds cooldown
    Current Iteration: Heals warrior and pet for a small amount
    Suggested Change: Make it a root ability. Replace with “Together Till The End”, a buff that makes the next pet summon cast instant. Five minute cooldown.
    Reasoning: Kinship is beneficial, but limitedly so. It's not quite worth a talent point as is, but it still reduces downtime and helps keep the pet alive in a pinch, and sometimes can even save the BM in rare occasions. However, it'd be better left as a root ability. Beastmasters also, despite their name, have the fewest pet options (small blue molecat upgrading into larger blue molecat), and unless I'm mistaken share with Necromancers a lack of instant or otherwise reduced summon cast time. They need one such ability, because out of all pet classes they have the least real utility for themselves and their group by virtue of having a pet (and I hope my ideas do well to change that). Aside from Protective/Enraged Companion, there is no other real benefit to the group for having the pet and the Beastmaster only otherwise benefits from Pack Mentality.

    Improved Protective Instincts: Passive
    Current Iteration: Reduces duration of stuns for group within range by 10/20/30%
    Suggested Change: Renamed “Taste Of Blood”. While Enraged Companion is active, increases the damage enemies take by .4/.8/1.2% per bleed they are suffering from. While Protective Companion is active, reduces the damage enemies cause by .4/.8/1.2% per bleed they are suffering from.
    Reasoning: Again, fairly useless talent. Maybe some boss fights would benefit from it, but in the heat of the moment such a talent as this feels too hidden. Its name and what it requires from the tree also doesn't make sense for what it does. Also, in PVP, between DR and CC breakers, it's a relic of a talent. Promoting intelligent control of the pet and proper use of bleeds should be the cornerstones of any good Beastmaster and this talent would be beneficial in all areas of the game while rewarding the better skilled who can keep their bleeds up and pet alive and on target. The more the BM can be a benefit to his group, the better.

    Tier 6
    Spoils of the Hunt: Finisher, 10 energy 1 minute cooldown, shares GCD
    Current Iteration: 50/100/150% of the damage the pet causes heals the pet and warrior.
    Suggested Change: Restore its bugged iteration in which damage done by the warrior healed the warrior and pet healed the pet. Remove from GCD.
    Alternative Suggestion: Heals the warrior and pet for 75/100/125% of damage caused by every tick of each bleed currently in effect over all enemies suffering from them within a 10 meter range. Remove from GCD.
    Reasoning: It was only good while bugged, because it was essentially the Beastmaster's “Oh S&!#” button, one that was significantly weakened by their loss in frontload in 1.1 since this heal-from-damage buff doesn't consider DoTs. I'd prefer the alternate suggestion so that it works off of bleeds because that would play to the Beastmaster's source of damage and his strength.
    An Experiment In Design - Deioth's Warrior Soul Revamps - More In The Works
    Beastmaster - Paragon - Warlord Coming Soon

    Please Click, Read, And Respond! Thank you!

  2. #2
    Plane Walker Deioth's Avatar
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    Roots

    Tier 0
    Fierce Strike: Basic AP Builder, Level 0
    Change: This attack is currently weaker than Champion's Mighty Blow, a PBAoE, at apparently every level (that's level, not rank). It needs to be buffed, at minimum to the damage of Mighty Blow, preferably more. I can understand its nerf, namely since it buffs pet damage, but the nerf was over the top.

    Tier 2
    Slashing Strike: AoE AP Builder, level 14, 25 energy, 6 second cooldown
    Change: With the previously laid out changes to branches giving bleeds more benefit, I feel less inclined to believe this needs a change, namely because it does not include weapon damage, only a small base and a decent bleed. I would like its cooldown removed, at the least, in case of misses.

    Feral Sweep: AoE Finisher, level 26, 25 Energy, 6 second cooldown
    Change: It does ~28% less damage than Champion's Bladefury when you factor both base damage and bleed. Bladefury also costs 15 energy, has an 8 second cooldown, and can be talented to hit 8 enemies instead of the base of six they both share. Apparently, Bladefury currently does more damage at the same level than Punishing Blow, the 0-point Champ finisher, so clearly the 1.1 changes weren't being well paid attention to, but that's for another post. To better match Bladefury, Feral Sweep needs to drop 10 energy (though a drop of only 5 would be reasonable if we got the energy talent I detailed earlier), double its frontload damage, and increase its bleed damage by 50%. This will put it more in line with the damage differences between Tearing Slash and Punishing Blow.

    Diversion Strike: AP Builder, crit buff for 10 seconds, 20 energy, 30 second cooldown, level 32
    Change: The reduction in its damage and crit chance buff with 1.1 does not fit with its untouched cooldown. Put the cooldown to 15 or 20 seconds. Otherwise, at least restore the crit chance buff to 10%.

    Tier 3
    Calming Influence: 10 second Crowd Control (Sleep), 20 meter range, 30 second cooldown, level 44
    Change: Uhh... what? A sleep? That breaks on damage? The equivalence of this kind of ability for the beastmaster would be like if Eradicate of Marksmen was melee ranged, or Wardens were given a disarm. It's an ability that runs counter to the entire soul and comes out of absolutely no where. It's misplaced. This is the perfect spot to give Beastmasters a new pet. To keep with the creepy molecat motif, give it armor and bigger fangs. Give us a Battle Cat ala He-Man. Our Armored Companion should also get a fourth ability, perhaps an AoE buff/debuff depending on if Enraged or Protective Companion is currently in effect. What they could be can just about anything, there's a lot of room for a couple of useful effects in both PvP and in PvE.

    Fight As One: Finisher, 60 sec cooldown, 10 energy, +5/10/15% damage/crit chance/hit for both warrior and pet., level 51
    Change: Assuming all changes necessary for the BM are made, and assuming Strike Like Iron is finally dealt with appropriately and warriors no longer need it as a crutch, this ability may become valuable in its current form. However, given what is available in other trees (especially Paragon with SLI) it's a horrible skill as is, not so much for what it does but what it costs in soul points. Either it needs to be brought back to its 10/20/30% iteration in 1.0 or it should be changed. I'd suggest “Hunt As One” which would be an active buff. What it does is share a few things between the warrior and companion and provide utility for number of bleeds in effect. The Bite debuff of the pet is now shared with the Beastmaster, while the Beastmaster shares half of his strength with the pet. As well, for each bleed currently in effect, the BM and pet gain 2% move speed, 1% crit chance, and 1% Attack Power up to 10 bleeds. We now have a buff that promotes good control of the pet to keep it alive and well, benefits the BM based on his performance, and also makes the BM a more viable PVP choice as he can build up runspeed from his bleeds. This also means that the deeper someone goes into BM the more viable a tactic it becomes to blow down his pet instead of him, as it really should be. Pet classes should be tied heavily to the well being of their pets.

    Thus ends my ideas for the Beastmaster. Again, these should be taken on merit of what the suggestion is rather than the numbers I provided, and furthermore, these changes should be read in the context that all other souls are currently viable to 51 points.
    An Experiment In Design - Deioth's Warrior Soul Revamps - More In The Works
    Beastmaster - Paragon - Warlord Coming Soon

    Please Click, Read, And Respond! Thank you!

  3. #3
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    BM is by far the most lazily designed class in the game imo right there with the warlord. i would love to see it get an overhaul. Your idea of making it the mobile warrior based on his pet and bleeds sounds very fun.
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    Plane Walker Deioth's Avatar
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    Pssh, 245 views and one response? Come on, people
    An Experiment In Design - Deioth's Warrior Soul Revamps - More In The Works
    Beastmaster - Paragon - Warlord Coming Soon

    Please Click, Read, And Respond! Thank you!

  5. #5
    Soulwalker
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    I love my beast-master and hate having to use other trees for most of my abilities. One suggestion I might add, and its minor almost to the point of triviality, but if they changed the color of the mole cats' eyes or even just added an iris and pupils, the pet would look ten times better, and although this wouldn't effect game-play if they are going to overhaul beast-master it would be nice to have a more attractive pet.

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    Rift Chaser
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    All dps trees should be given the same "relook" that tanking souls were. The biggest problem seems to be optimization versus specialization, in that most souls in terms of their general damage peaks in the mid 20 to 30 point range at most, and after that any speccing for specialization brings damage down (relative to putting the points in other trees).

    With bm at a certain point you're potentially putting points in useless talents (for pve) to get more crit for you and your pet. For you thats nice, for the pet, the crit gets you a bleed, but the damage increase from that crit is minimal. Similarly with paragon, you end up putting points into defensive talents, to get to the high end dps increases (which would be fine if they extended the points spent increasing dual wield damage beyond 30 points being the max, to allow it to compete with 2h damage).

    side note: what exactly is it about putting your pet on a target, and pressing one other button when the pet crits, that screams master of beasts?
    Last edited by naturegoulet; 06-05-2011 at 08:54 AM.

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    Plane Walker Deioth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by naturegoulet View Post
    All dps trees should be given the same "relook" that tanking souls were. The biggest problem seems to be optimization versus specialization, in that most souls in terms of their general damage peaks in the mid 20 to 30 point range at most, and after that any speccing for specialization brings damage down (relative to putting the points in other trees).
    Actually, only Void Knight was really "looked" at recently, with Warlord getting a couple bandaids when he's suffering from malnutrition and needs a brand new diet. You're right though that just about every soul is lacking value in higher tier talents and deep roots. I think every calling suffers from this.

    I'm starting to, slowly, give every soul (sans Void Knight, me thinks, unless I get a chance to play one from level 1 due to his added complexity and unique mechanics) and reworking. Hopefully, people like them. Just finished Paragon and I plan to deal with Warlord next.
    An Experiment In Design - Deioth's Warrior Soul Revamps - More In The Works
    Beastmaster - Paragon - Warlord Coming Soon

    Please Click, Read, And Respond! Thank you!

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