Maelkoth's Corner : Mobility

#1. Mobility

I have put a lot of thought into this part of the game, and while I feel some immobilizing may still be too powerful sometimes, it has improved a lot lately. I have 2 things to suggest for this other than simply balancing skills. One change I think is important is getting rid of the fractional mobility loss. Early levels of abilities such as entangle, hamstring, and then the aoe abilities of rumble, ice wall, taunt, and some others all do partial mobility damage. This system allows for massive aoe mobility debuffing to completely immobilize an army, and also adds what I feel is an unwanted randomness in whether your characters get a turn. These abilities could be changed to either affect 100% mobility (for something like entangle or hamstring) starting at lvl 1, or to affect different abilities (taunt affecting targeting or df instead of mob). I also think it would be OK to have some of these abilities having a chance to immobilize 100%, kind of like how smite works now. For example, If Skill AOE Mobility Debuff 3 hits, 50% chance to immobilize target for 2 rounds, with the 50% being rolled for each target hit. At least this way you would know who is immobilized and who you can heal with, rather than wasting charges as your units do nothing.

UPDATE : An idea that has been growing on me has been a different effect for having partially reduced mobility. Rather than a chance to lose a turn, if the actual action taken was reduced in effectiveness, that would certainly be much less frustrating, and if stacking were to be changed, it would be nearly impossible to reduce units to 0 mobility with the AoE partial mobility killers. I think this would be a perfectly viable solution as well, and may be less of a drastic change.

The other change I like is giving your units a resistance roll at the end of each round to try to shake off each effect. The resistance roll would be based on your defensive stats, and for the long term it would be different depending on the attack. For example, entangle might be resisted by strength and something else (such as will or con), while confusion might be fought off by int and will. The way I see it working best is if a percentage of your resistance bonus is used based on how many rounds are left on the ability. If a 5 round ability is used, after 1 round you would have a set percent. To make it simple for the example we could try a straightforward percentage progression, so 20% of your resistance bonus would be added to that roll, while after 3 rounds 60%. We could go one of two ways with this, we could either set up the percentages so that the second to last round gives you a 100% stat roll to resist, or we could actually have abilities last longer than the listed duration and give higher stat bonuses to the roll until it is resisted. Since I think it would be too difficult to have each effect track who cast it and the casters stats to determine how hard it is to resist, I think the best way would be to have the roll versus a set number (say 100) for level 1 abilities, and each level adds to the difficulty to resist, up to something like 150 or 200 at lvl 5, depending on what kind of bonuses are being added to the roll. Either way I really like the way I think this would work, it will allow for characters to make heroic actions by breaking free of an entangle early or recovering his wits during battle despite having a lvl 5 confusion on him. It will somewhat weaken debuffs, but I think that is ok, and the max durations can be increased to help combat this some. Also, if we go the path of allowing abilities to last longer than normal max duration if the roll has not succeeded then that will help keep balance as well. Another thing that might be helpful for this is creating a penalty for resisting multiple debuffs in one turn, so each roll after the first would get a moderate stacking penalty to the roll, so that a character can not resist a billion debuffs each round.

One last thing that I’m hoping is already in the works is individual rolls to avoid hits, as well as for crits, ultimates, and blunders. This would also greatly affect how skills such as panic work. I much prefer not having abilities be entirely hit or miss on multiple characters.

These changes would certainly change balance a bit so it is hard for me to say too much about unbalanced abilities, but right now the mobility abilities I most dislike from a balance and mechanics standpoint are ice wall, entangle, and taunt. A single critical Ice Wall disables all of your melee, and provides a good sized defense boost. I think a defense boost to the whole squad is fair enough by itself to be honest, but I definitely think something has to be worked out with that. Entangle is crazy powerful for an uncommon 2 ap ability, immobilizing multiple targets for quite a few rounds. And well we all know taunt… On a powerful melee unit, an aoe debuff that can totally shut down an army with just a few units casting it is too much. The higher ap cost helps, but honestly the mobility AoE debuff makes it well worth the extra cost. Without the mob debuff, and with either a df debuff or an effect to draw attacks to himself, are the ways to go I think. I will also address stacking problems later on.

On a side note, right now, if you select an ability to use while immobile, you can not choose a target or anything, and then you wind up losing the charge anyway. This is especially frustrating when you are only slightly immobile and you try to do a one shot thing such as shapeshift, and it gets negated by a taunt… Sometimes you may be trying to cure your unit before they go, so you would like to set an action in case that happens. I think that you should be able to do this, and then if you are still immobile, you keep the charges for the ability.

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