These are just my opinions on the game’s current balance. I know the balance patches will be towards the end, so Zack can ignore this post until then if he wants
I’ll keep adding stuff as I think about it.
Right now, every damage multiplier is added to the base result using only stats, which means there’s a lot of situations where your creatures do 0 damage with an Attack or a Spell when they would have done 15M damage taking their traits into account (because it’s multiplying their bonuses by 0).
I think all the modifiers should be applied before checking enemy Defense.
In no particular order. Not including Salamanders, Cerberuses or Vulpes since I’ll talk about autocasts later.
[ul][li]No Sudden Movement: once every enemy is Frozen, they’ll never get a turn since Frozen will just be reapplied and every enemy will be dropped to the bottom of the queue.[/li]
[li]Primitive Incantation: This trait lets you hit the cap in one stat with just one trait slot, so it should probably get a cap or something.[/li]
[li]Darkness Fate: See above.[/li]
[li]Dark Aegis: See above.[/li]
[li]Solace: See above.[/li]
[li]Thaumaturgy: See above. Also, does this really stack?[/li]
[li]Affluence: This probably needs a cap as well, same idea as above.[/li]
[li]Deafening Roar: Even with the nerf, a team of 6 Razorfoot Griffons with Forest Pact will have a 929% damage bonus, which becomes 1386% after Shackler’s Mastery.[/li]
[li]Fable: 11337% bonus damage just for having a Singular team with 6 copies of this trait.[/li]
[li]Silence Speaks: I like this trait, but Diffusion basically gives it to the entire party at the start of battle. Is there a way to prevent the extra traits from Silence Speaks from being shared?[/li]
[li]Braze: Not sure if this one should stack.[/li]
[li]Lust for Punishment: Extremely broken with Deathwalker’s Hymn, considering this stacks. I’m not sure how many debuffs a Leper team would get, but assuming each creature gets 10, six copies of this trait would add 1562500% damage. It gets crazier because Wrong Side actually gives duplicates of some debuffs. The Hymn isn’t really needed considering the multipliers involved.[/li]
[li]Agitation: Same thing as above.[/li][/ul]
Now for the ones that need a buff:
These ones suffer because of the current damage formula (if any of these ignore Defense, they shouldn’t be in this list. I’m assuming none of them do):
-Live to Labor
-Fight or Flight
-Square Nothing (since it doesn’t really depend on the actual damage you do)
-Piercing Dragon Claws
-Menacing Dragon Fangs
If the formula is going to stay the same, I think these traits should calculate damage with the full stats vs defense, and then reduce the damage. For example, for a Crypt Bat, calculate the normal attack vs defense damage, and then substract 85% of the damage before applying it to the enemy. This ensures that the damage isn’t 0 unless a normal attack would do 0 as well. The Splash buff could use the same treatment.
These spells are too risky to be fun and should change completely, in my opinion:
-Rescue Ride (besides, shouldn’t one of Azural’s shields have a Frozen-related trait? ;D)
It’s just too dangerous with Priest traits and other stuff, especially if your team’s strategy needs Diffusion.
Other traits that I think should be buffed or changed:
-CAWW! - This is a better version of the Confused debuff. Not sure what to do with it, though. Maybe just a chance of attacking your own creatures if you target the trait holder?
-Guilt - This is probably the worst Itherian trait. I don’t see myself using it in any situation. Maybe if it was the highest.
-Tender of Earth - I know this one was my idea, but it’s really useless. It should be 30% of this creature’s Mana.
-Secret Ingredient - I really think the Dumpling should give more Knowledge instead of Singular chance. Have the V.Dumpling give the Singular chance instead. That way, you complete the bestiary, then get a creature that helps get S-ranks, then get a creature that helps get Singulars.
First off, I believe all autocasts should cost Mana. For this to work, though, some spell costs should be rebalanced.
I also think [size=12pt]damage tiers (small/moderate/large/massive/devastating) should be much more noticeable[/size]. In exchange, the costs should rise accordingly.
I propose a base cost of 4, 8, 16, 32 for single-target spells and 10, 20, 40, 80 for area spells (based on their damage tier, so a massive damage single-target spell would cost 32). Then the cost increases a bit more depending on the effects of each spell.
This only applies to damage spells, of course. The rest will have to be looked at individually.
I would also [size=12pt]soft-cap spell damage based on its damage tier[/size]. A Massive spell like Finger of Death would have no caps at all (or very small ones, leaving the rare “devastating” damage tier as the uncapped one), while something like a Shatter on a non-Frozen target would do negligible damage even with a lot of Intelligence. This helps make the damage tiers more noticeable and also gives another advantage to Attack teams, which are currently a bit worse.
Example of proposed costs:
Small Damage Single-Target Spells
Chastise - Cost 4 - Bonus: Autocasts when owner is attacked.
Conflagration - Cost 6 - Bonus: +35% damage of remaining duration of Burn to all enemies.
Counterspell - Cost 6 - Bonus: Damage increases with target’s missing Mana.
Double Punch - Cost 9 - Bonus: Doublecast, based on Attack instead of Intelligence.
Earthen Spike - Cost 12 - Bonus: Massive damage against defending targets.
Holy Smite - Cost 6 - Bonus: Cast recovers Health.
Ice Bolt - Cost 6 - Bonus: Target is Frozen.
Implosion - Cost 10 - Bonus: Damage multiplied by number of target’s buffs.
Lightning Strike - Cost 12 - Bonus: Massive damage against provoking targets.
Magic Missile - Cost 0 - Bonus: Costs 0 Mana.
Scourge Spells - Cost 12 - Bonus: Massive damage against a certain class.
Shatter - Cost 12 - Bonus: Massive damage against Frozen targets.
Shield Bash - Cost 7 - Bonus: Target is Stunned. Damage based on Defense instead of Intelligence.
Spell Blast - Cost 6 - Bonus: Damage increases with caster’s missing Mana.
Whiplash - Cost 7 - Bonus: Target is afflicted with Bleed. Damage based on Speed instead of Intelligence.
Small Damage Area Spells
Annihilate - Cost 30 - Bonus: Damage is massive against debuffed enemies.
Consecration - Cost 12 - Bonus: Caster recovers Health.
Death Blossom - Cost 20 - Bonus: Triplecast.
Flamestrike - Cost 20 - Bonus: Casts a number of times equal to Burned enemies (fizzles if there aren’t any).
Mind Storm - Cost 14 - Bonus: 50% Stun chance
Righteous Storm - Cost 12 - Bonus: Enemies lose a small amount of Attack.
Splitting Arrow - Cost 12 - Bonus: Damage based on Speed instead of Intelligence.
Ticking Timebomb - Cost 12 - Bonus: Damage increases based on battle duration.
Wind Shear - Cost 20 - Bonus: +35% damage for each Nature creature on caster’s side.
[size=14pt]SPELL GEM PROPERTIES[/size]
The main problem here in my opinion is the “Costs Health” property, which varies a lot. It should probably be a fixed amount depending on the Mana cost of the spell.
“Generous” spells should cost much more Mana than they currently do.
“Class Swap” spells should cost a bit more Mana than they currently do.
“Refund Mana” spells should cost a bit less Mana than they currently do.
Maybe the general stat perks should be uncapped like in S2. Or at least have 1 stat per mage class be uncapped and the others as they are. I’m not sure if this would actually hurt balance, though.
Acrobatics: This perk doesn’t play well with some traits, which limits attack teams that want to use Speed as their main stat. For example, Square Nothing ignores Acrobatics.
Adaptation: This perk is now useless, since there are Seeds and Purebred is better than Hybridization anyway.
Hybridization: This perk is just a worse version of Purebred, so it should probably be changed.
Raid: This perk actually hurts some teams that depend on a specific turn order. Maybe it could be changed to a 3-step perk that always increases your position on the action queue by 1 per rank (Leahn’s idea).
Battlemage: Same as Acrobatics.
I’m not sure about Death. Some people seem to think it needs more options. Chaos and Life are fine in my opinion.
I think just using Essence to grind Spell Gems would fix everything.