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Thread: T1 Instance Wrap-up, Casual PoV

  1. #1
    Telaran Varagar's Avatar
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    Default T1 Instance Wrap-up, Casual PoV

    Greetings community, Trion.

    Just a quick note from a casual group/raid leader, main tank point of view (Guardian, Warrior, 110 toughness). I don't get a lot of time to play, I'm not a hardcore raider. I'm a full time worker, husband, and father of two. Thank you for your time if you read this. To everyone else:

    TLDR - This guy and his friends are noobs, move on.

    ---

    Trion,

    Thank you for making some truly challenging encounters for a casual player in your dungeons. So far I have run all of T1, and in T2 I have done most of AP (sans Icetalon). For the most part I enjoy the dungeon runs, and have had fun learning the fights along the way. I have a few issues with some of the expert mode dungeons, and I hope you take these comments to heart. This is done in effort to offer up some constructive criticism.

    All T1 Instances - There is too much "non-boss encounter" material in most of the dungeons (except LH). I understand the pacing mechanic that these encounters are to provide, not to mention traditionally there are "gear check" and "competency check" factors involved. Since I rotate people in my group a lot to try to intermingle cliques within the guild, I tend to find myself teaching encounters constantly, which slow my groups down significantly. At best effort, I currently require about 2-3 hours to do an instance, up to 4 hours with bad luck and unfortunately frequently I run into bugs. I think you missed the mark on this with expert dungeon runs. The target time frame should be at most 1h30m for a bad group, and 45m for a well-oiled machine. That means raid-geared players should go even faster. This enables us to run multiple dungeons a night if we want, or run our daily dungeon and still have time to do other things like daily quests (another gripe for another time), or PvP (if you are a PvE player like me).

    Also there are a couple of 5+ Elites pulls that without proper CC you're pretty much wiping on at least once. I'd highly recommend no more than 4 elites in any given pack of mobs. If you want more punishment on the tank, add some non-elites to the fray.

    Iron Tombs - Other than being a gratuitously lengthy there are two major problems with IT+:
    * There is no transporter after the 3rd boss to cut run-times in half when working on the last half of the dungeon. If anyone has ever had problems on the last two bosses you will feel my pain. The 5+ minutes of run-back is punishing (assuming SW is down).
    * There is an excessive amount of melee hate in this dungeon in general. I force all my warrior kin to have a Rift/Para type build where they can chuck spears during four of the counters here:
    - Spider Boss: Her PBAoE poison aura is too punishing. It drops the melee classes well below the threshold of being able to be kept up, and unfortunately when one of them drop below 50% life (which happens quickly), she turns on that person to finish them off. At this current time I mandate all "melee only" basically walk away and stand still doing nothing while the light-green PBAOE aura is in effect. I'm fine with this requiring more healing to push through, but it shouldn't be lethal so long as our Bard/Chloro/Clerics are doing their job.
    - Bonelord Guy: This guy isn't too bad if you have just one melee DPS, but by and large DPSers are narrow-minded, blindly focused button pushers. Ranged make it easier, but not tremendously so. I would never do this fight with a full suite of melee though, someone is bound to barely not make it around the pillar in time.
    - Ragnoth: Similiar to Bonelord, its POSSIBLE to do this with heavy melee, but his PBAoE highly discourages it. Another problem for casuals is the "cast and run at the same time" issue. Most casuals can walk, most can chew bubble gum, but most of us rarely can do both at the same time. In order to group cure and run at the same time, I find most clerics unable to do so. Being snared while trying to find the safe area is near impossible. The massive blast he does should do one of two things: 1) it should have a huge up-front damage cost with a smaller DoT, or 2) It should do very little damage up front, but ramp-up the damage as the DoT ticks. Right now it is VERY punishing on casual players who can't seem to cleanse/run fast enough when snared and/or out of position. Right now it is very close to "one mistake and you lose", which isn't forgiving enough for the casual crowd.
    - Last Boss: This boss is stupid. I don't need to tell you that you are better off having all melee stand outside his AoE radius and just throw rocks at the guy. This is another case of "one mistake and you die". Guy starts ground pounding, any melee who didn't get out is pretty much dead. There are fantastic players out there whom I'm sure will make it out every time, but most casual players are not that person. Instead of a specific PBAoE, maybe have it do full damage in the frontal cone (tank) and less damage behind him (melee dps) so they don't die to a well timed string of pounding plus his other ability getting them low first.

    Foul Cascade - This dungeon is actually pretty good for casuals. There needs to be slightly less pointless trash (e.g. non-elites), but otherwise its pretty solid. Saurin was hard there for a little bit, but was bugged. She still is pretty rough on healers since you have to "move and cast" at the same time, very hard to do for some. The only real issue here is Vallnara at the end, and only because of two things: 1) Her adds can really pile up and can start spiking the tank down pretty fast towards the end. They're pretty hard to kill, and take too long to handle if you attempt to down them then back to her. I like that they're basically a "stacking DoT / enrage timer". All this is fine, except her hard-to-see purple ground effect she poops out REALLY freaking hurts if you don't see it, or are trying to say pick up an add at the same time. Either tone the effect down, or make the adds easier to kill. 2) Her encounter can bug if you wipe. The other day we wiped, during the wipe I received a combat rez from our Cleric. I took the rez after the encounter had "reset", but before the adds disappeared. This bugged the encounter so that the adds would never go away. Wipe after wipe, adds piling up and never despawning. She has no leash so no way to "reset" the encounter. Took us hours to figure out how to properly pull one add at a time (involving feign death).

    Realm of the Fae - Too much trash. The boss encounters themselves are pretty straight forward. The only tweaks I would recommend are 1) Lugg can poison, drop a puddle, and melee the crap out of the tank at the same time. If he doesn't, its a pretty normal "stay out of the fire" encounter with some cleansing and healing spikes. If he does hit the tank all at once, look out! Cooldowns + Big Heals + Luck or wipe. 2) Atrophinius' little bard buddies are a little tough to handle for a casual group. The easiest way we've done it is two tanks, one DPS, Healer, and Support. This takes FOREVER though. To try the standard Tank/2 DPS/Support/Healer build would require a little less healing / cadence damage output from the adds. The boss himself is pretty well tuned. 3) However, Twyl is not, not if you're removing the safe spots. Because the event is timed (portals spawn regardless of previous avatar being dead), it tends to lead you to need fully T1 geared DPS to meet each phase properly. A casual team with an unoptimal build will have a hell of a time between the tree and Twyl phases. To have two bosses, plus adds, plus the orbs coming out is a little too much to handle for a group that is new to the T1 scene. I recommend going back down to one orb but have it be slightly more punishing (or keep both but lower the punishment), and extending the time between tree and Twyl phases just slightly.

    King's Breach - Too much trash in the beginning and throughout the middle, and there is no point to the death spires, taking them away would significantly speed up the instance. Hunter, Ravalos are perfectly tuned. Shadehorror is actually too easy, IMO - instead of the adds doing a PBAoE just forcing me to clump them up away from everyone, how about you remove the PBAoE and instead give the Shade an AoE void bolt spam that hits all 5 people regardless of range to force everyone to push themselves a little harder without punishing melee. You could possibly also introduce a transporter to warp you from the enterance to near the end of the tunnel after the basilisk.
    - The Manticores is entirely too complex for a casual group / newbies to properly handle. You basically have to have two tanks, two healers, and a DPS to successfully navigate this fight (I've done it with 1 Tank, 2 DPS as well, but do not recommend it). You have to worry about curses, bolts, melee, cleaves, charges, and fire all at the same time. The level of difficulty ratchets up SIGNIFICANTLY from other fights to this one. I've only done AP++ once but I found 3 of the bosses there to be much easier than this fight. Extreme coordination / chaos fights should be T2/Raid level. The real big factor here is dealing with the bolt and the DoT at the same time. The DoT should be less catastrophic if not cleansed, and bolts shouldn't take down a non-tank as fast.
    - Konstantin is awesome. However, as you may know, its one of those "melee make one mistake an instantly die" fights. He actually shouldn't have a cleave at all, or it should have its damage reduced because the tank has to move SO MUCH, it is highly likely that a melee DPS will get caught by it. His whirlwind is awesome, don't change it. I still find myself getting hit by synchronization issues between the client and server sometimes though. I was standing on one side of the line when the spikes come, but the server though I was still a few steps behind and I take spike damage. I was running away from his whirlwind, but the puff of smoke and spikes occurred at the same time, stunning me and allowing him to catch and kill me. I recommend that instead of having the spikes impale and stun you, that they instead cut you and make you bleed. This way instead of having something as simple as client-server sync cause death, you're basically putting an onus on the healers and support to ramp up their game if things start going wonky.

    Lantern Hook - For the most part it and FC are the best dungeons. The right amount of trash, with proper pacing mechanics; the bosses don't feel overdone. Pyromaster is pretty rough if you don't have support heals. Emberlord Ereetu is pretty much a cluster-F of movement with a melee heavy group, its hard to find room with cleaves and crystals, but its entirely doable. Oludare is actually my only complaint. You're dealing with "raid boss" mechanics here, something that really ratchets up the difficulty over the previous bosses. He has a frontal cleave, a "tail swipe" hoof kick thing, charges, stuns, leaves pillars of fire in his wake, and hits decently hard at melee or range (spears). Too many mechanics shoved into one guy just to be a challenging end-of-dungeon boss. As you know there is currently safe spots, like with Twyl, to minimize his charge issues. Why not just remove the charge element, or the cleaves (so you don't get RNG charge-and-cleave deaths), and ramp up the damage output slightly?

    ---

    Thank you for taking the time to read this if you did, Trion, and others. I'm sure there are hardcore players out there who thought this stuff was a simple cake-walk and wanted even more challenging encounters. That is the exception, not the rule. I thank you for your time.

    Regards,
    -Karagar

  2. #2
    Rift Chaser nezitx's Avatar
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    Being melee in IT is not that hard.
    With Rag if you are quick you can easily make it out even if you are snared.
    On the final guy, if your healer can't afford to heal melee dps (because you could run in and out otherwise) they should learn to use Way of the Mountain. ;)

    The other bosses don't even need an explanation - melee is fine. There are certainly come anti-melee hate but I would not have used IT as an example.

  3. #3
    Soulwalker
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    As I have no real input to this and no experience in endgame dungeons/raids in Rift... I did find this post to be rather informative and I would like to thank the OP for taking the time to write this up and share it with the Dev's & Members.

    Level 47, can't wait

  4. #4
    Ascendant batou079's Avatar
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    i mainly agree about all the melee hate being pretty imba.

    just a quick word of advice, the last boss in IK isnt really hard at all, 10x easier than most expert bosses.
    just have the tank back up against a wall, having the boss face him against that wall. Rest of melee dps attack boss's back. When he starts pounding, mdps can back off quickly, and tank can scoot out to teh side and away without taking too much dmg... and repeat.

    this will also keep the tank from getting kicked across the room all the time.

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  5. #5
    Telaran
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    This post is really spot on, thanks for the time you put in to write it up.

    My biggest issue with the T1 dungeons is the time investment. I love the challenge of the bosses, and feel there should be learning curve time. But once you have cleared it, you shouldn't have to spend hours clearing trash. I laugh when I see the rapid clear achievements and after feeling good about a 2 hour clear time.

    There have been a few nights when I get on to run an expert only to find myself staying up way too late to clear it for mearger rewards. Overall, I think the trash pulls should be thinned out and their HP lowered. This would greatly speed up the time from one boss to the next, which is the meat of the dungeon.

    I also play a melee DPS role at times and love that some changes are comming to help with the insta kills I receive.

  6. #6
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    They only take that long the first couple times through them. If you stay with the same group (or even core), they shouldn't take longer than 1.5 hour to do any of them. Yah, there is a lot of trash in IT, but it's all easy and you shouldn't be wiping on any of it.

    Also, youtube some videos on the Manticore fight and it becomes stupid easy. Everyone get in melee range and/or use the nook and/or have the tank use Way of the Mountain. It becomes the easiest fight in KB.

    Also, if you read the recent info release of 1.2, you'll see trash health is getting reduced and quite a few bosses are becoming more mDPS friendly.

    *edit*

    You really should be killing the adds on the Queen FC fight. They don't have that much health and can be cleaved/aoe'd down fairly easily. DPS might be a bit low if you guys can't down them quick enough.
    Last edited by mattya802; 04-18-2011 at 01:27 PM.
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  7. #7
    Plane Walker
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    The only thing I agree with is the amount of trash in the expert dungeons. Everything else is about asking for things to be handed to you on a silver platter. I started doing T1 dungeons last Tuesday. Our guild is small and we are currently 4 manning the dungeons and have cleared everything but Rotf, and thats only due to us not having the time to work on it yet. If we can do these dungeons as a 4man team in under a week starting from scratch, adding a 5th is just going to make it a snoozefest. I am just glad in a way that we have been tackling these as a 4 man, as its been very satisfying to work out how to beat the encounters with our group makeup. If we had a full 5 person setup, I think would have been bored by now.

    Mechanics should not be based on the lowest common denominator. It will make things easy and boring for the majority who will be above that level.

  8. #8
    Telaran Varagar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sorano View Post
    Mechanics should not be based on the lowest common denominator. It will make things easy and boring for the majority who will be above that level.
    Actually, that is *almost* exactly what they need to be based on. You shouldn't have to get too fancy with your first tier of "real" dungeon content. A cool 3 abilities per boss, with a last boss having an interesting 4th would be perfectly if executed properly. I'm happy for you that you feel that your skilled 4 man team is the "defacto standard" for which excellence should be measured, but it is the farthest thing from the truth.

    - The default setting for basic pre-50th instances should be simple mechanics only to teach them.
    - The default setting for the first tier of experts should be the same simple mechanics with more damage output, with the additional and final bosses a moderate challenge for a random group of people who do not know each other and may not be that skilled. You have to assume they have level 48-50 quest rewards and crafted items when going into the instance, not 50th purples.
    - The default settings for the second tier should be challenging mechanics, steeper DPS requirements, and real challenges to get the final rewards. You assume that anyone who zones in is in full Tier 1 equivalent gear and understand basic MMORPG fight mechanics (don't stand in the fire, don't get cleaved, etc.).

  9. #9
    Plane Walker
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varagar View Post
    Actually, that is *almost* exactly what they need to be based on. You shouldn't have to get too fancy with your first tier of "real" dungeon content. A cool 3 abilities per boss, with a last boss having an interesting 4th would be perfectly if executed properly. I'm happy for you that you feel that your skilled 4 man team is the "defacto standard" for which excellence should be measured, but it is the farthest thing from the truth.

    - The default setting for basic pre-50th instances should be simple mechanics only to teach them.
    - The default setting for the first tier of experts should be the same simple mechanics with more damage output, with the additional and final bosses a moderate challenge for a random group of people who do not know each other and may not be that skilled. You have to assume they have level 48-50 quest rewards and crafted items when going into the instance, not 50th purples.
    - The default settings for the second tier should be challenging mechanics, steeper DPS requirements, and real challenges to get the final rewards. You assume that anyone who zones in is in full Tier 1 equivalent gear and understand basic MMORPG fight mechanics (don't stand in the fire, don't get cleaved, etc.).
    They ARE based on this as it is. Arguably the only gear check for T1, is for the tank to have 50 toughness, all of which is easily accessible to even the most casual player. The gear I started with came from: -completing normal CC/AP (boots/chest)
    shoulders from the planar vendor (6 blue ancient sourceshards which you should easily have by 50)
    blue crafted pants (~10 plat)
    helm/gloves/belt just random blue items from drops in normal CC/AP

    There is nothing difficult about putting together the gear you need for starting out in T1. We actually started IC expert as a trio and downed the first spider boss with no difficulty. As a TRIO! I was in the exact gear I listed above, nothing special, and it was cake for 3 people. The trash actually took more thought and effort and yet you are asking for them to make the spider easier? If we could do that spider with 3 people, and a group of 5 is having problems with it, then maybe it's not the encounter thats the problem.

  10. #10
    Champion of Telara
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    The only thing from the OP that I agree with is "...too much meaningless trash". If all Trion did was remove the death beacons from KB i would be happy.

    The rest I disagree with. The T1s are just fine for their intended playerbase.

    Some fights are challenging at first but that is where the fun is.

  11. #11
    Plane Touched
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    OH GOD YES remove those stupid idols from KB...just like they removed the death stones from IT....

    you can skip a lotta trash anyway in KB, just go up the side after you kill first idol... and pull boss from behind....


    anyway, i find T1s are fine. some are longer (like IT and Fae), but some are easier, so all in all, balanced. Most are good introductions to common mechanics used throughout game and further into T2, so its a good training for harder stuff. Most damage is not too bad or unforgiving...cant make it too easy otherwise its boring.

    Hardest fights in T1? probably manticores is one....last boss in fae after they fix the no-hit zones probably....plus the weather graphics in there are really screwy lol...

    T2 is perhaps a LITTLE too high a jump from T1, even with good gear....even with veteran group in good raid gear, you can still wipe easy with 1-2 mistakes on trash....and yea, there are some unforgiving 5 mob pulls, like the last pull before werewolf in DD...or any pull where those frikking lurkers add onto....

    generally though, T2 is a good challenge above T1. They do take more time, but thats the whole point isnt?

    DSM seems to be another T2.5 up....but if your hitting T2s, should start saving up souls and doing rifts too

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sweatybetty View Post
    you can skip a lotta trash anyway in KB, just go up the side after you kill first idol... and pull boss from behind....
    Don't even have to kill that first one, just jump up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sweatybetty View Post
    Hardest fights in T1? probably manticores is one....last boss in fae after they fix the no-hit zones probably....plus the weather graphics in there are really screwy lol...
    Manticores are a pain until you realize to use the nook and everyone stay in melee range and then it's probably the easiest fight in there lol
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  13. #13
    Plane Walker
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    I think the biggest problem is the difficulty increase between regular dungeons and the T1. I thought the game was way to easy until I started doing the T1 content. I will say the trash is a nuesence adn either needs HP reduced or damage reduced. It is rediculous when trash mobs are more challenging then some of the boss fights. Other then that trion has done a great job on introducing strategy bosses that I feel most games don't have early on. It allows people to make the transition from regular content to raid content.

  14. #14
    Telaran Varagar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattya802 View Post
    Manticores are a pain until you realize to use the nook and everyone stay in melee range and then it's probably the easiest fight in there lol
    I haven't tried it with all in melee range due to cleaves and pools of fire. Casuals like us have a hard time dealing with "move as a group" mechanics. We tend to run around like a chicken with our heads cut off. Needless to say the last dragon boss in DD (T2) last night was... interesting during his air phase.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varagar View Post
    I haven't tried it with all in melee range due to cleaves and pools of fire. Casuals like us have a hard time dealing with "move as a group" mechanics. We tend to run around like a chicken with our heads cut off. Needless to say the last dragon boss in DD (T2) last night was... interesting during his air phase.
    There are no cleaves and he won't throw the fire if you're all in melee range. Just tried this for the first time the last time I ran it along with Way of the Mountain and the fight was almost too easy. I'm a casual also and have yet to even venture into T2.
    Last edited by mattya802; 04-19-2011 at 07:26 AM.
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