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Thread: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

  1. #1

    Default Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Okay, let's get down to business and discuss a hot-button topic. First, a disclaimer. With this post we want to open up a dialogue to discuss how to go about changing Dragons. We haven't determined a course of action nor have we made any decisions yet. Nothing said here is set in stone or even a fully coherent, implementable (or perhaps even wise) idea.

    We welcome your thoughts, feedback, suggestions, and criticisms on these ideas.

    Assumptions: Dragons have some serious drawbacks that limit their gameplay potential:

    1. Dragons cannot easily be balanced because of the way they are currently implemented
    2. School composition cannot be changed because so many abilities are quested, rather than acquired from a school
    3. Only one adventure school limits Dragons to level 100 (rating 100)
    4. Little growth potential beyond the Rites
    5. Little, if any, potential for specialization
    6. Not a lot of replayability



    Revamping would do what for Dragons:

    1. Give Dragons more growth potential (beyond rating 100)
    2. Extend the gameplay life of a Dragon (You can reach 100 Juvenile, but to get new schools you have to ascend and so on)
    3. Create more variety of gameplay opportunities among Dragon players (Crowd Control, Melee, DPS, Healer, etc.


    How would this be done?
    Quested Abilities
    Quests offering abilities would not be available for Dragons undertaking this path. Some exceptions might be made to allow further customization by players of their Dragon. Primal Mastery, Tooth & Claw Mastery, Accurate Breath, etc. Recommend doing this with passive abilities only, if at all. None of these should be required to ascend to Adult or Ancient.

    Juveniles
    The Dragon juvenile school would be a Jack-of-All encompassing a little healing, spellcasting, crowd control, and melee combat. None would be ultra powerful, but would give players a baseline of play similar to leveling one of the bipedal base schools (Warrior, Mage, Cleric, and Scout). To ascend to Adult, players would need to reach level 100 Juvenile.

    Adults
    Once they ascended, Adult Dragons could choose from one of two new schools that would let them focus on being either a Spellcaster or a Melee fighter: Soldier or Adept. These would contain more powerful abilities but would be more focused on the Dragon’s chosen path. Unlike a biped, Dragons would not be able to join both schools. To ascend to Ancient, players would need to reach level 100 in an Adult school.

    Ancients
    After their second ascension, Ancient Dragons would be given a choice to choose from based upon their Adult school choice.

    • Soldiers:

      • Conquerer (Tank)
      • Dominator (Crowd Control)

    • Adepts:

      • Primalist (DPS)
      • Protector (Healer).



    How would this be done to avoid impacting current Dragon players?
    To avoid impacting existing Dragon players, this new school system would only be available to NEW Dragon characters. When this system was implemented the old schools would no longer be available to newly created characters. Updates to trainers and Rites would likely need to be made to accommodate the changes and to support a dual system.
    "Alea iacta est" -- Julius Caesar

    Toot shouted, voice shrill, "In the name of the Pizza Lord! Charge!" (Jim Butcher's Dresden Files)

    "Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spends it whole life believing that it is stupid." -- Albert Einstein

  2. #2

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    This is refreshing to see. The points you raise-

    Quote Originally Posted by AmonGwareth View Post
    Assumptions: Dragons have some serious drawbacks that limit their gameplay potential:

    1. Dragons cannot easily be balanced because of the way they are currently implemented
    2. School composition cannot be changed because so many abilities are quested, rather than acquired from a school
    3. Only one adventure school limits Dragons to level 100 (rating 100)
    4. Little growth potential beyond the Rites
    5. Little, if any, potential for specialization
    6. Not a lot of replayability
    -are very true; and while a lot of players are content with the current dragon schools, the problems you listed are still real.

    I have always wanted to see a sort of specialization for dragons. Currently, the Dragon Adventurer school is really straight-forward, and easy for beginners, but stale. After trying bipeds, I have found that their school and progression system is far more advanced, more difficult but ultimately, much more rewarding. Those who prefer playing bipeds will certainly find this idea appealing. Additionally, this brings dragon gameplay closer to that of bipeds, and gives some sense of consistency.

    If/when this is implemented, I would be absolutely sure that there will be people that are opposed to the change, as is the norm with any community. However, the fact that old characters remain the same will allow the more conservative bunch to keep what they are used to. Those who do like the change will be able to enjoy it.

    This change will also bring a lot of attention to Istaria, raise the amount of players, and would make the forum go crazy. An update this big is definitely something I would like to see.

    +1

  3. #3

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    YES
    I would love to this kind of system implemented

    So some questions

    "Reach lv100 Juvenile"
    So i got severeal questions here
    1. Is lv100 juvenile going to be like 50 of the current system? (in terms of strength/skill)
    2. If the answer is no, will the rop be changed to reflect a larger difficulty?

    I don't see flaws with adult set up, so another question or two based on ancient set up.
    1. Will AROP be changed to reflect school, rather than faction (i.e. get fangs of fury for soldier, primal rage (or whatever it's called) as an adept)?
    2. Will we be able to switch between the two ancient classes/have both simualtaneously?

    Also: I don't feel like deleting my ancients to get such a system. Can you make it so we can join this system if it gets implemented? So we don't have to do it all over again (espeically order people, where this would cause a MAJOR difference in rp). But not forced into it, so we have a choice whether we want go through the fuss of it or not.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Quote Originally Posted by Azath View Post
    this would cause a MAJOR difference in rp).
    I could imagine that the dev team will make some sort of backstory to accompany the update, like they do with others. Something that would incorporate the school difference with an RP solution. Some story like a "New Order of dragon schools" or some historical figure that arrives to teach the new hatchlings the "new way".

    I am Thrarparr.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Quote Originally Posted by Parrr View Post
    I could imagine that the dev team will make some sort of backstory to accompany the update, like they do with others. Something that would incorporate the school difference with an RP solution. Some story like a "New Order of dragon schools" or some historical figure that arrives to teach the new hatchlings the "new way".
    I meant - if remaking our chars was the only way to get it then exaclty 200% of the rping order population wanting this wouldn't do it because remaking their chars might have a major rp difference to their actual characters that they may not tolerate.
    E.g. Azath is supposed to be a badass ancient, master of primal energies and she's had all that past time of sadness and hapiness and research and- oh wait no she's a hatchling.

    I'm all for new lore, but not ^ that.

    I don't even care how much fuss i'd have to go through to set it up, i have some ancinets who direly need caster schools even if it's painful to put them in it, but i will not remake them and waste the effort i put into raising them.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    I don't see flaws with adult set up, so another question or two based on ancient set up.
    1. Will AROP be changed to reflect school, rather than faction (i.e. get fangs of fury for soldier, primal rage (or whatever it's called) as an adept)?


    Have not yet even considered this. Probably very premature to do so.

    2. Will we be able to switch between the two ancient classes/have both simualtaneously?


    My initial thought is no, but I'm open to discussion. Though I'd rather it not be just like the biped system.

    Also: I don't feel like deleting my ancients to get such a system. Can you make it so we can join this system if it gets implemented? So we don't have to do it all over again (espeically order people, where this would cause a MAJOR difference in rp). But not forced into it, so we have a choice whether we want go through the fuss of it or not.


    No, absolutely not. There is pretty much no way to do this for existing without being an all or nothing type of change. To take advantage of it, the only way I see it working is for a new character to be created to use it.
    "Alea iacta est" -- Julius Caesar

    Toot shouted, voice shrill, "In the name of the Pizza Lord! Charge!" (Jim Butcher's Dresden Files)

    "Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spends it whole life believing that it is stupid." -- Albert Einstein

  7. #7

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Some quick thoughts so far:

    I don't like that you say "it will not be like bipeds" meaning you cannot switch schools. Multiclassing is the ONLY reason to play a biped. Dragons should be able to multiclass, and master lowbie versions of say the healer abilities and use them in the tank school, like peds do.

    The whole "force me down this path" is nothing more than the shortsighted way the factions currently work. No thanks.

    Give dragons Multiclassing or leave them alone.


    More schools, great

    Specialization, great

    Leveling to 100 to be able to ascend doesn't really seem out of line. The way it works now it often feels like a 5 year old being told "ok you can drive now".

    The juvenile has access to all the abilities, presumably so players can learn enough about all of them to be able to decide a specialization after reaching adult. This sounds like the current dragon adventure school. Why not allow existing dragons to either choose to stay as-is, or pick a specialization, starting about where the new adults would in the proposed plan? Again, I must point out that Dragons should be able to multiclass and switch schools. No forced path stuff, even as Adults.

    I like the intent of the original idea, but whole new schools, scrapping the old, seems very drastic and dangerous. The existing Dragon Adventurer school evolved over about half a decade, and the base build had a huge dev team compared to the resources Istaria has today. Forgive me for being incredibly skeptical that something of this magnitude could be pulled off without massively breaking Dragons. For several years most likely. Before it maybe got ironed out and working. Maybe. There's existing broken things, that still are not fixed (see recycle modifier on Fangs of Fury crystal/arop headscale for just one example), that have been reported more than once. And you want to attempt building 2 whole new schools from scratch and ditch the old one? All sorts of new abilities would need made or altered, but existing bugged ones can't seem to be fixed? I've reached max level on Skepticism.

    Find a way to add it to existing dragons, and leave in the old Dragon Adventurer school, with the ability to switch back to it and gain back all the existing abilities. That way if(when) something gets horribly broken and stays that way for years, the game isn't totally broke in the meantime. I don't think Istaria could survive if dragons went through a 2 or 3 year "all buggered up" period. There has to be an exit strategy for all this new stuff, and the potential it will bring for things to go horribly wrong, or I have to say No Thanks, Leave it alone. That exit strategy, that fallback plan, is the Dragon Adventurer school as it currently is. Keep it, and let me switch at will to DRAG, or DSOLdier, or DADEpt as I prefer. If you cannot find a way to do that, just leave it well enough alone.


    **************************
    Thoughts about Dragons in General:
    Why do they have the same health as bipeds? usually less without tons of training points in Health. Your supposed Tank class would need to have about 4x the current base health of a Dragon. The Adept class should have more too (at a lower multiplier). Even existing Dragons with the old school should have more. Same argument applies to Armor, Strength, Power stat's too (in varied multipliers, that could be different depending on the school). Dex could be lower than bipeds, but it in fact already is. Focus could stay as-is. These things would all have to be considered if something all new happens for dragon schools. Dragons are going to be more powerful than a modest multiclassed biped, no matter what you do, or they aren't really "Dragons", just a biped school, with biped health levels, without the ability to multiclass, and a big damage melee ability to give them some semblance of the power Dragons should have, that can fly.

    At least Dragons have 2 rites of passage, many quests and lore. Playing a Dragon in Istaria is like a second game compared to playing a biped. And there's nothing really wrong with that except you run into the difficulty in having challenging monsters for both. But you will still have that if you remake the dragon schools. Dev's don't like Gold Rage, chances are it would be gone in the new schools. Then dragons would be weak, essentially a battlemage but with less spells, unless something else that gives them more power is added. Then the monster balance issues comes back anyway. So I really hope that this desire to change dragons is being proposed with the intent of giving dragons more to do, interesting choices, and not as an excuse to nerf dragons back to being a biped level everything (stats health dps etc.) just so monsters are easier to balance.
    Last edited by Guaran; July 22nd, 2014 at 02:52 AM.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    great ideas Amon.well thought out.good concept...!
    for a new game..not for Istaria the way it is.

    Besides other,
    you will not not succeed in convincing the "I want it all" mentality.
    Nothing wrong with that- its human^^But too much compromises will leave all unhappy.
    btw: A loud and clear NO to dragon multiclassing from here.

    In another point I go with Guaran:" Do not fix what is not broken"-or : "never change a winning team".

    I my eyes- not much wrong with dragons and bipeds(or their schools) atm.
    (Small fixes or additions are always appreciated^^)
    Though I know that different devs work on different probs and projects:
    The real killers of the game are missing challenges (or too hard ones at lower levels) missing world projects,
    missing satisfying loot tables, missing surprises like new mobs or new things to explore. And most of all:
    Missing opportunities to hunt/fight together.
    Pls focus your resources on that. My opinion.

    If you think about changing dragon schools, target group for that is not necessaryly new players. More long term Istarians, right?
    New players will love playing a dragon the way it is too. So its no measure to get new players.
    And if it brings back vet players (who know how to powerlevel a new char)- only for the time until its ancient.
    Not much reward for lots of investment and manpower, precious time and money.
    Last edited by LOVWYRM; July 22nd, 2014 at 06:07 AM.
    YOU told me to play a dragon! [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  9. #9

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Quote Originally Posted by Guaran View Post
    Thoughts about Dragons in General:
    all signed
    YOU told me to play a dragon! [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  10. #10

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Quote Originally Posted by AmonGwareth View Post
    ...changing Dragons.

    Boy it's a tough one, isn't it? So far we have 2 for, and 2 against... not a big sample, but I can see it literally dividing the community. I actually like the school concepts, but not being able to switch, why you no switch!? That's not multi-classing...

    You raised 6 drawbacks, but the 3 positive results you raise don't really address them. The only increased re playability comes in the form of having to level 4 new dragons to experience all the schools.

    Would this be at all possible:
    In the proposal you present 2 adult choices, Soldier and Adept. Offer a 3rd, the current dragon model. If that means adding in all the current abilities as level rewards instead of quests, so be it (but keep the quests in anyway, just no ability rewards). If you need to make some of the current abilities DRAGON only, so be it.

    Allow a single character to take all classes; the current model and all the new dragon classes. Obviously when you're solder or it's prestige classes, you'll only have access to masterable abilities from other schools as per bi-pedal multi-classing.

    I think it's clear I don't understand why you wouldn't want Dragons to be able to multi-class just like bi-peds; that seems to be the better way to address your concerns in my opinion.
    --- iuvenilis --- [Officer of The Alliance]
    Demonslaying since July 2004

  11. #11

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Anyone who thinks dragons don't need much changing or focus currently - ask someone who mainly plays a caster style dragon.

    As for no multiclassing, it's a tough one.
    I don't mind not being able to multiclass personnally, i think the only oppertunity, if at all we should get to do it is with the ancient classes. However people are going to make bad decisons, so there should also be a way to undo it (if a multiclass model isn't introduced). A dragon you talk to do as an adult to swap adept/soldier (all abilites gained from the other school unusable), similalary between ancient schools (maybe not so strict on what's restricted because you're in the same area of schools)
    If a multiclass model is used, gotta have more restrictions than bipeds would - no masterable abilites (only a few between ancient classes). So you can't be a jack of all trades and end up like bipeds (i believe intent of no multiclassing?). Besides, i think the schools, if done right, will give the perfect specialization that we all want anyway so multiclassing shouldn't be needed.

    On being allowed to fall back on current DRAG school - no. This system is intended to replace it, it should theorically be better than current DRAG school anyway. Allowing people to fall back on it only gives the option of playing a hybrid, and hybrids only exist in the first place because dragons don't have much playability - because casters are too weak to player seriously. If it is kept in, i think it should only be changed for that playstyle - hybrid. Sort of a hard path, as hybrids would be too OP if they got the best of both worlds. If the new system would be buggy? I don't care if it takes a a year or two after developing it, for it to be tested in blight to perfection. If such a system is implemented, it's gotta have a lot of time in testing to flatten out all the bugs, so when it would come to live shards it doesn't destroy dragons.

    Quote Originally Posted by Guaran View Post
    At least Dragons have 2 rites of passage, many quests and lore. Playing a Dragon in Istaria is like a second game compared to playing a biped. And there's nothing really wrong with that except you run into the difficulty in having challenging monsters for both. But you will still have that if you remake the dragon schools. Dev's don't like Gold Rage, chances are it would be gone in the new schools. Then dragons would be weak, essentially a battlemage but with less spells, unless something else that gives them more power is added. Then the monster balance issues comes back anyway. So I really hope that this desire to change dragons is being proposed with the intent of giving dragons more to do, interesting choices, and not as an excuse to nerf dragons back to being a biped level everything (stats health dps etc.) just so monsters are easier to balance.
    This.

    Quote Originally Posted by LOVWYRM View Post
    If you think about changing dragon schools, target group for that is not necessaryly new players. More long term Istarians, right?.
    Why i think we need ancients to be able to get into the new system without starting all over again. New Players won't complain on the current system until they try being a caster or hybrid.
    It's us vets who have asked for change, if we have to start all over again, lose the progress we've got on our dragons, some ancients that span the age of the game that still play even (Zarkela for example)...We've asked for change because we want it, it's us who want better playability, not new players, so to have the progress that we have fought for and gained over many years almost pointless because of a new system that we can't even enter without losing it all then...well, you need to sort out your priorities. (Start a new character? And make my current ancient with all the abilities, spells, formulae, tech kits etc. almost pointless, because they probably won't match what's planned? No thanks.)

    Quote Originally Posted by Guaran View Post
    The juvenile has access to all the abilities, presumably so players can learn enough about all of them to be able to decide a specialization after reaching adult. This sounds like the current dragon adventure school. Why not allow existing dragons to either choose to stay as-is, or pick a specialization, starting about where the new adults would in the proposed plan?
    This.
    Give us the option to get specialisation with this way. And at lv100 current ancients could then pick form ancient schools instead. So we aren't made useless.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    I can accept multi-schooling though how much is carried over from school to school would be the sticking point.

    Most, if not all, Dragon abilities would have to be duplicated in order to make them accessible and workable in new schools without impacting current players.

    Will current Dragons be able to join the new schools? No, it simply isn't possible. There is no way to remove abilities gained outside of a school (through quests, for example). This means the only way this system works is for new characters. I'm sorry, that's just how it has to be. I know its a bitter pill because players don't want to lose their characters to play the new stuff, but there just isn't a way to convert a character like that given how much an Ancient already has in terms of skills and abilities.

    Yes, I dislike Gold Rage. Anything that does that much damage on a 15 second timer is dumb. Its nothing but a crutch covering a broken system. I would like to give Dragons more options, even more power, but I want it to be balanced by choices and trade-offs. Do I want to make Dragons weak? No, they are core to the game. I want to make them interesting and fun to play. I want players to have more options regarding how they play them. Will there be a Gold Rage type of ability? Yes, more than likely. I already assumed there would be as a multi-strike fueled by hoard is a good idea and system.
    "Alea iacta est" -- Julius Caesar

    Toot shouted, voice shrill, "In the name of the Pizza Lord! Charge!" (Jim Butcher's Dresden Files)

    "Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spends it whole life believing that it is stupid." -- Albert Einstein

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    My two cents in this is, yes, update the dragons to have more choices, paths, abilities, etc - giving them more specialization and variety over all is a good idea.

    However, how would this look to new players? We already have new dragons coming in and quitting before they reach adult because it's just takes too long (for them) to get there. Or they quit after adult because they don't want to get the rest of the levels after they fly. With 300 (or 200, depending if you're lvl 1 again as an ancient) levels ahead of you before you're the overall final dragon, that's definitely looking very daunting in the eyes of a new player. They might just not bother or quit while they're ahead, or they might get some levels and give up when they realise it's going to be ages before they can fly. (Which is their main pull to the game usually, i've seen very few who say 'ive come for the grinding and leveling') Looking between a bajillion levels on either front on a questing system as grindy as Istaria's (it's extra-grindy to someone like me who condemns powerleveling and has never touched it) will definitely drive away new players and while the old ones re the ones asking for this, if we get it, will the game even survive on the lack of pull it may receive?
    Of course this system may interest new players more but considering the players that i see coming in these days, I highly doubt it.

    Another thing I have to question is the idea of making new powerful > rating 100 dragons while leaving in the old ones in. Yes I understand it can't be changed, there's lots of stuff with Istaria's hardware and capabilities that can't be changed these days, but it will leave pretty awkward power gaps when you have a lvl 100, rating 100 DRAG character fighting alongside a lvl 100, rating ###, ancient crowd-control-fighter-dragon. I'd imagine these higher level ancients would have a stronger overall outlook, leaving current dragons behind, hence why I mention this.

    I also agree with Guaran in the points he raised of fixing what's broken rather than bringing in something new. With the amount of delay it took for Crystalshaping to come in, while it did come in eventually and I do love the school, I do wonder how long it will manage for the devs to code this system out, implement it, fix it, and polish it altogether with as small a team as there is today. The game would probably be in an awkward on-off state of bug fixing and implementing I would expect, making it awkward and not very fun to play. Dragons as-is would work well if they had their bug fixes and tweaks to make the system work good. I like the idea of Istaria having the two worlds of dragons and bipeds, with the lore it makes sense as dragons either hate bipeds or only recently allied with them. Why would they work like them? Also that's a reason why I support not multiclassing dragons. I don't like multiclassing overall, honestly, but that's just me.
    I also agree with Guaran's points of dragons as they are now and what he suggests of them.

    As someone with, I believe ,5 ancients and a 6th one on the way, I have to say I'm probably biased and very conservative. I like dragons as they are but would certainly welcome change with specializing. I always have ideas on what to specialize in on my next character and with the stat system as it is, I certainly have the choice, but the difference isn't big enough to make me feel well rewarded for my stat choices and scale sets. I have my thrown-together main character, my tank Dorokane (600 pts in health), spellcaster Teikera, DPS Sayaria, DPS/health Zikari, etc etc. I don't know what exactly to suggest with helping dragons specialize without revamping them as suggested, but there has to be some way to bring them about and give them equal oppertunity as bipeds without dropping the current system entirely.

    Anyway as I said, just my two cents as someone who is still grumpy about the RoP/ARoP changes.

    tl;dr: I support specialization but I dislike the idea of leveling the same character 3 times over entirely to get to the next stage, multiclassing, and would prefer if edits/bugfixes were made to dragons as-is rather than a revamp. I also worry how this would be seen in the eyes of new players.

    Edit: What I would suggest for more specialization among dragons is to create abilities and spells that require a much higher primal, power, focus, strength, etc than normal that will require specializating in some stats so that you can actually use them. So far I've only seen things with the maximum minimum being 1000 primal for Primal Boon, which you get around lvl 100 anyway. Giving abilities with quests that require certain amounts of Tnc or such would allow specialization while also allowing you to spread but between different skills, so you can get mid-tier TnC skills and mid-tier Primal skills but if you wished ,you could also get the highest tier primal skills but only low TnC and vice versa.
    I realise that'd only work for levels 100 or so because of the fact that you'd get those 'mid-tier' abilities anyway by leveling as is, but it's a rough idea that can be fleshed out.
    Randomly came up while discussing with some Istarians over Skype.
    Last edited by Racktor; July 22nd, 2014 at 04:34 PM.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    I am kinda on the fence with this one. Whilst Yes i would love to see dragon classes i have NO intention of re-leveling Aurakvoar.. the idea of him going back to hatchling is... no just no. I am also not so hot on the Idea of "Hatchling all the way to 100." although as people wish to fly perhaps have a "Strengthening the wings" ability at around level 50 that allows hatchling to fly... although perhaps on a timer say for 2 mins on a 3 min timer

    That aside what could be the options?

    First in my opinion take away all the quested for abilities and you have a great although relatively weak base class, and thats exactly what it is "a base class" Soo what to do? well would it be possible to put the power in our hands with our existing characters?? the quested for abilities are the problem right? how about introduce an NPC like the biped that allows you to forget classes that allows us to forget quested for abilities. so for example we go up to him and say "I want to forget GR" and viola gold rage is deleted forever.. and once we delete certain quested for abilties the new schools open up.

    Quote Originally Posted by AmonGwareth View Post
    Yes, I dislike Gold Rage. Anything that does that much damage on a 15 second timer is dumb. Its nothing but a crutch covering a broken system. ..... Will there be a Gold Rage type of ability? Yes, more than likely. I already assumed there would be as a multi-strike fueled by hoard is a good idea and system.
    But under the new system gold rage wouldn't need to be a crutch but it could perhaps still have a place. Theres a couple of ways you could go about it. an alternative to getting rid of it altogether (which would make me sad) how about increase its timer to the same as Primal-cast and have them share timers.
    Gwain Drago - Mystic Paladin
    Arzel - Knight of creation/Battlemage
    Aurakvoar - Ancient Lunus

  15. #15

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Quote Originally Posted by Azath View Post
    It's us vets who have asked for change,
    Us vets? You young whipper snappers. :p


    Although I would like to see some of these things, and certainly want to see specialization, I share many of the concerns Guaran and Racktor bring up.

    *inhales deeply* This is gonna be a long explanation of a concern of mine, so please bear with me and read the full explanation.

    Any new system should not make vet players who have old established dragons under the current system useless or weaker when compared to those under the new system. There is a possibility that the new system would leave those veteran players with caster and caster-heavy hybrid dragons out in the cold where concerns group hunts and epic mobs.

    While I do agree with the sentiment that Gold Rage is an OP bandaid to a broken system, and also cite that that there is room for improvements and fixes to make the game more fun and interesting for dragons, understand that under the current system there are those of us who don't and can't utterly depend on our Gold Rage. (read Azath's comments about caster dragons, of which I am one) And this would create an imbalance because dragons of the current system would not be able to partake in the new system that is being proposed.

    To give a little background knowledge into things might help. I do use GR, but it is notoriously inaccurate for me, so I tend to ignore it and treat it like I would tail whip, ravage, and bite abilities. Why? Because of the three strikes in a GR, normally I make one hit and the other two miss, or they all miss. Drain strike is more useful to me because if it actually hits, I get a chunk of health back, and my BoFB does as much as that one hit from my GR and is more accurate, as are my spells. This has caused me to change the way I play that dragon where concerns group mechanics from a tank to that of an AoE specialist for crowd control and to a lesser degree, healer. (Most dragons rip apart one enemy easily, I chip away at 5-10 and enjoy the rush of keeping my health bar up when it is at a sliver.)

    With that little bit of background knowledge in mind, the concern is that if this new system is implemented, any pure spellcasters under the current system would be left out in the cold. The new system of spellcasting specialists would do more damage, be more accurate, and heal better than a pure spellcaster in the current system because they would be balanced to their melee specialist counterparts, a great idea in theory. However, to add insult to injury, pure spellcasting dragons under the current system can't even do a decent GR to bring them into line with that, meaning they could not give any decent contribution to a group in comparison to their newer counterparts. There will arise the question of 'are you a spellcaster under the new school system?' and if the group finds out that is not the case, they may very well refuse to help or allow the old school pure spellcaster to join in. No fun there.

    Melee and melee-heavy hybrids from the current system would be fine because they would have access to an ability that works for them to make them equal with or slightly better than their new counterparts.

    If that is going to be a remote possibility, then as a pure spellcasting dragon under the current system, I can't support new schools under a new system.


    What I do want to know, and what also creates some of my own skepticism about this idea of a new school system is this.

    1. We had multi-classing for dragons on blight not so long ago. Dragons from the current system could easily take part, and if you multi-classed I recall abilities like GR being blocked out. The only way to access that ability was through switching back to the DRAG school. What was wrong with that system that it can't be expanded upon and used? (If a system like this was used, because it would be inclusive to dragons under the current system, then my concern of the above would be moot because I could just multi-class into the new spellcasting specialist schools.)

    2. If the idea of implementing new schools/multi-classing for dragons falls through, Is it possible to extend dragon levels on the current system with it being inclusive to current system dragons? It would be nice to at least be able to get to level 110 or 120.

    3. What about those dragons who aren't pure spellcasters but rather are pure dex/evasion based? (i.e Monk dragons) They are an even rarer breed than a pure spellcaster but they do exist.

    I'm not saying yeah or nay, but I am saying that maybe old options should be looked back into, and if any new system is concocted then it needs to be very carefully done so as not to upset or imbalance the oddball dragons in the current system in a way that they are unplayable in comparison to dragons in any new system implemented.

    Quote Originally Posted by Racktor View Post
    Edit: What I would suggest for more specialization among dragons is to create abilities and spells that require a much higher primal, power, focus, strength, etc than normal that will require specializating in some stats so that you can actually use them. So far I've only seen things with the maximum minimum being 1000 primal for Primal Boon, which you get around lvl 100 anyway. Giving abilities with quests that require certain amounts of Tnc or such would allow specialization while also allowing you to spread but between different skills, so you can get mid-tier TnC skills and mid-tier Primal skills but if you wished ,you could also get the highest tier primal skills but only low TnC and vice versa.
    I realise that'd only work for levels 100 or so because of the fact that you'd get those 'mid-tier' abilities anyway by leveling as is, but it's a rough idea that can be fleshed out.
    I actually like this idea too. There was at one time, a point when you really only found that Helians could cast primal boon. I suppose we had a sort of specialization once upon a time, it was before they muddled the Lunus and Helian factions.
    Last edited by Arzel Rashemi; July 22nd, 2014 at 05:40 PM.


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  16. #16

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Quote Originally Posted by Racktor View Post
    Edit: What I would suggest for more specialization among dragons is to create abilities and spells that require a much higher primal, power, focus, strength, etc than normal that will require specializating in some stats so that you can actually use them. So far I've only seen things with the maximum minimum being 1000 primal for Primal Boon, which you get around lvl 100 anyway. Giving abilities with quests that require certain amounts of Tnc or such would allow specialization while also allowing you to spread but between different skills, so you can get mid-tier TnC skills and mid-tier Primal skills but if you wished ,you could also get the highest tier primal skills but only low TnC and vice versa.
    I realise that'd only work for levels 100 or so because of the fact that you'd get those 'mid-tier' abilities anyway by leveling as is, but it's a rough idea that can be fleshed out.
    Randomly came up while discussing with some Istarians over Skype.
    This sounds interesting.

    I believe there may be other ways to allow dragons to specialize as well, without ditching the whole thing, requiring new toons to try it out, and risking having dragons be "broken/unfinished" for years.

    Build on what we already have. And we have made some good starting suggestions in the past. Wanna play a caster, use a new spell-ability that has a shared timer with Gold Rage. Shared Timer means one or the other and quite simply solves some "don't want them to have it all" issues. They may have all the abilities (like a multiclassed biped does), but they wouldn't be available at the same time. Totally nothing wrong with this.

    Racktor's Idea of putting in a new ability that requires say 1500 base t&c, so that only a melee aimed Dragon can use it, and some new spells that require 1500 base Primal to use, could be interesting. No big deal that you cannot really do it until level 100, or Ancient (or both). Some quick possibilites that come to mind. Ancient Determination. Requires 1500 base t&c, and when used adds 500 strength, 500 t&c, doesn't stack with old determination, primal roar, or Primal Ancient. Primal Ancient. Required 1500 base Primal, when used adds 500 power, 750 primal (spells need a boost). These could be effects on the player. Inability for them to stack would control having "it all".

    Other ways probably exist as well. What about EXP earned past level 100? Could we spend it somehow to buy new abilities that allow specialization? Could be quested for abilities as well, which prevent picking a caster upgrade when you already chose the melee upgrade, or vice-versa. But I am still not for forced paths... I really dislike that concept. The new upgraded melee/spell abilities could also be on shared timers. So even if a dragon had both, could only use one or the other. The abilities could be effects that do not stack (in the way that Determination and Primal Roar do not stack).

    Other thoughts on making Dragons more interesting to play:
    It seems like now, when I use breath of flame attacks, we no longer see the breath.. (I think I still see lightning breath) Some new flame effects to go along with new abilities would be cool. New attack animations would be sweet. A new melee aoe ability where a dragon completes a 360 degree spin, spewing flame breath all around until he is briefly enveloped in a wall of flame would be amazing. Stuff like that. More flame.

    I'd love to see new things to make it interesting and fun to play. But thinking about how much work all of this would entail, I think it would take several years for Istaria's limited dev team to achieve it all. That's why I still feel that having the ability to fall back to DRAG is wisest. Convert all the quested for abilities into class abilities. And actually, not all of them would need converted. Many are relatively small buffs and could just be left as-is, such as hardened scales (only +100 armor), Primal Mastery (+100 primal), etc. The ones you could convert to actual class abilites would be those you want to take away/change. Only one's that comes to mind is Gold Rage, and Determination/Primal Roar if the above upgrade ideas got implemented.. It wouldn't be THAT difficult to adjust the few existing abilities first, into the type which require a school to use. Gold Rage might already say "Useable by DRAG", which means someone in a new school cannot use it anway. There's so many quests that would all have to be touched if the old school was dropped... Got to be a way forward without removing the DRAG school... So that as work progresses we aren't broken.

    Someone mentioned testing for years on blight, I'm not sure that's possible unless Live servers want to go years without a patch/content update. Dev's correct me if I am wrong but I am pretty sure once something goes to blight that would affect quests/abilities, it would get put on live during the next content update. If that's going to happen, DRAG needs to be around in the meantime.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Quote Originally Posted by Racktor View Post
    Edit: What I would suggest for more specialization among dragons is to create abilities and spells that require a much higher primal, power, focus, strength, etc than normal that will require specializating in some stats so that you can actually use them. So far I've only seen things with the maximum minimum being 1000 primal for Primal Boon, which you get around lvl 100 anyway. Giving abilities with quests that require certain amounts of Tnc or such would allow specialization while also allowing you to spread but between different skills, so you can get mid-tier TnC skills and mid-tier Primal skills but if you wished ,you could also get the highest tier primal skills but only low TnC and vice versa.
    I realise that'd only work for levels 100 or so because of the fact that you'd get those 'mid-tier' abilities anyway by leveling as is, but it's a rough idea that can be fleshed out.
    Randomly came up while discussing with some Istarians over Skype.

    Actually i like this idea although personally I think its more aimed at Spell caster dragons than melee. as melee dragons are already very hard hitting. I would love to see the magi-dragi get some kinda GOMG nuke that has a primal req of say 1400 something that as a melee dragon I can't ever get. although perhaps have TnC equivlent that might give us say 500 extra health
    Gwain Drago - Mystic Paladin
    Arzel - Knight of creation/Battlemage
    Aurakvoar - Ancient Lunus

  18. #18

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Disappointing. I figured this thread might take a different path than previous ones, but it has reached this point in under a day. We have had discussions about how to address Dragons previously on this very forum. They went nowhere because it would involve a lot of change, pain, frustration and agony on the part of current players.

    There is no way around that, assuming we could even remove quested abilities (which we cannot without sql scripts manually run). I just don't feel that its a viable option. At least with the proposed system in this thread the kinks could be worked out without impacting existing players.

    I am unsure of how to proceed with this. Seems like a non-starter I guess. Thoughts?
    Last edited by AmonGwareth; July 22nd, 2014 at 05:49 PM.
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  19. #19

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Quote Originally Posted by AmonGwareth View Post
    There is no way around that, assuming we could even remove quested abilities (which we cannot without sql scripts manually run). I just don't feel that its a viable option. At least with the proposed system in this thread the kinks could be worked out without impacting existing players.

    I am unsure of how to proceed with this. Seems like a non-starter I guess. Thoughts?
    Please don't give in so easily amon none of us said we don't want it what we said is we are worried about balance of the new dragons vs the old dragons. and we are worried about bugs. and we don't want to have to start whole new dragons to make use of the proposed content.

    an alternative if you can't delete quested for abilities can you turn them off? or make them do nothing?
    Gwain Drago - Mystic Paladin
    Arzel - Knight of creation/Battlemage
    Aurakvoar - Ancient Lunus

  20. #20

    Default Re: Talk to the Team: Dragon Schools

    Some of this ideas, we already brought up in the past..

    http://community.istaria.com/forum/s...nt-Buffs/page2
    http://community.istaria.com/forum/s...-Dragon-Spells
    http://community.istaria.com/forum/s...-draggys-ideas

    there are more-if someone wants to look at


    pls allow another concern: Will new techs, equippment, quest rewards aso
    still be compatible with the "old" dragons? Or will we be weak and obsolete sooner or later, forced to create a "new" dragon?
    Last edited by LOVWYRM; July 22nd, 2014 at 07:07 PM.
    YOU told me to play a dragon! [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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