Suggested Balance Adjustments

This is a thread I’ve wanted to make for a while: a general “balance pass” of my own, looking at various things in the game that could use some attention. I’ll be adding to this thread gradually as I go through the many, many things in the game and making notes and observations on them.

Anyone else is welcome to chip in with their own suggestions, of course!

For the first post, I’ll draw attention to effects that have similar or identical effects.


TRAITS

Ninetails’s Revenge
After this creature is attacked, it gains Attack equal to 20% of the damage received.

Compare to Untamed Vortex’s Expansion trait:
After this creature takes damage, it gains Attack equal to 50% of the damage it took.
Untamed Vortex both has a far easier trigger AND gains more attack from it.

Suggestion: Have Ninetails’s Revenge contribute two stats instead of one, perhaps Intelligence or Speed.


(suggested by JTR)
Valkyrie Priestess’s Illumina
After your creatures are Attacked, they have a 25% chance to gain Shelled. This trait does not stack.

Compare to Phase Paladin’s Shield Aura
After your creatures take damage from an attack or spell, they have a 35% chance to gain Shelled. This trait does not stack.
Phase Paladin’s trait has more triggers and a higher chance to take effect than Valkyrie Priestess’s.

Suggestion: Elevate the chance of Valkyrie Priestess’s trait.

Andolin Seraph’s Break the Cycle
If this creature has Provoked at least one time this battle, a random enemy is sent to the bottom of the Timeline each time it Provokes after that.

Compare to Citadel’s Mind Prison
After this creature Provokes, it sends a random enemy to the bottom of the Timeline.
Andolin Seraph’s trait is more or less the same but with an extra step attached.

Suggestion: Give Break the Cycle a chance to bump an ally to the top of the timeline - if that chance fails, it sends an enemy to the bottom instead as usual.

Deep Clutcher’s Shadowmeld
Your creatures have an independent 10% chance to dodge for each debuff the enemy has. This trait does not stack.

Compare to Vulperry’s Bob and Weave
Your creatures have an independent 20% chance to Dodge attacks for each debuff the enemy has. This trait does not stack.

Deep Clutcher is directly inferior to Vulperry.

Suggestion: Base Deep Clutcher off Buffs instead.


SPELLS:

Hell Forge and Internal Combustion have the same effect:
Target gains Taunting and Splashing.

Suggestion: Make one of them grant Defensive instead of Taunting, since Defensive is currently not granted by any spells and has few sources in general.

Crystal Spears and Rend have the same effect:
Target takes a moderate amount of damage and is afflicted with Bleeding.

Suggestion: Base Crystal Spears off a portion of the caster’s Defense or perhaps Barrier potency, since Crystal Shield is also defense-based.


PERKS:

Consecrated Ground (Cleric) and Losing Touch (Dreamshade) have an identical effect and are both anointable:
Your creatures are immune to Blighted.

Suggestion: Have one of them either strongly reduce or outright eliminate blight damage while still allowing it to be applied. This would allow for debuff synergies.

Deathrattle (Bloodmage), Never Forgotten (Purgatorian) and Retention (Windrunner) have an identical effect and are all anointable:
Your creatures’ stats are no longer reset after they’re killed.

Overheal (Cleric) and Paradox (Dreamshade) have an identical effect and are both anointable:
Your creatures can trigger healing effects even while they’re at full Health.

Suggestion: Not sure for these two. They are already powerful effects and difficult to really add to or change without risk of making them under or over powered.

Contrition (Inquisitor) and Singe (Sorcerer) have an identical effect and are both anointable:
After an enemy attacks, they have a 4% chance per rank (Max 100%) to be afflicted with Scorned.

Judgment (Inquisitor) and Psychic Scream (Sorcerer) have an identical effect and are both anointable:
After an enemy Casts a spell, they have a 4% chance per rank (Max 100%) to be afflicted with Silenced.

Suggestion: Change one set to stat loss instead of a debuff.

War Machine (Siegemaster) and Unbound (Paladin) have an identical effect and are both anointable:
After your creatures Provoke, they Defend.

Suggestion: Invert one so it’s the other way around.

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Phase Paladin and Valkyrie Priestess have Similar effects, Priestess trait being weaker than Phase Paladin’s

Marine Pit Worm - Making ALL creatures RESISTANT to debuffs after 5 turns is just far too useless for something that requires 5 turns to activate.

Maybe making your whole team immune to debuffs would be a better call here or even resistant after 2 turns.

STATUS EFFECTS

Arcane
When an Arcane creature casts a spell, the spell does not consume any Charges. Then, this buff is removed.

As there are now a lot of ways to mitigate charge use or regain charges, Arcane generally seems lackluster outside of very basic starter builds.
Suggestion: Arcane can also be expended to either unseal gems, or cast them even when they’re sealed.
Alternate Suggestion: Casting with Arcane also boosts spell potency significantly.

Blight
Creatures with Blighted cannot be healed and take damage from healing effects equal to 25% of the effect.

Blight’s damage output is well-known for being on the low end at the best of times, which isn’t necessarily too bad given the heal block effect - however, it tends to lack any kind of useful synergy due to how it works.
Suggestion: Give Blight a potency factor similar to Poisoned, Inverted, etc. Instead of a flat 75% damage cut, the potency would dictate how much damage a Blighted creature takes from being healed. This would allow some traits (Shamblers in particular) to establish a stronger synergy with this effect.

Death
At the start of Death’s master’s turn, it has a chance to kill the enemy with the lowest Health. The chance is increased based on how low the enemy’s Health is.

This barely ever seems to go off enough to be worthwhile, especially since other ways of killing are much more effective and quick. It is also useless outside of normal battles where instant death effects are blocked.
Suggestion: Death triggers it’s master’s on-death effects in some way.

Famine
After Famine’s master attacks, it decreases the target’s Maximum Health by an amount equal to 30% of the damage dealt.

In Necromancer teams where Famine generally sees the most use, it doesn’t seem to have much impact on the battle overall.
Suggestion: Allow Famine’s effect to also be triggered when casting a damaging single-target spell.

Resistant to Debuffs

Compared to immunity, Resistant often doesn’t feel worth taking in effects due to it having rather limited effects on debuffs in general. The stunning debuffs it attempts to curtail still take enough of an effect (especially Snare) that it most often feels like Resistant isn’t doing a whole lot.

Suggestion: Resistant creatures have a % chance to avoid debuff application.
Alternate Suggestion: Debuffs on resistant creatures only last 1 turn or are otherwise limited in duration.
Alternate Suggestion: Debuffs on resistant creatures have only half the usual chance to apply their effect, and/or apply at half the usual effectiveness.


PERKS

Even the Odds (Trickster)
At the start of normal battles, you have a 2% chance per rank to instantly kill a random enemy.

This could possibly use an effect outside of normal battles similar to Reaver’s realm perks gaining such a boost.
Suggestion: Chance to set a random enemy’s health to a lower percentage.
Alternate Suggestion: Chance to send a random enemy to the bottom of the timeline.

Prey (Trickster)
When your creatures Attack while the target is afflicted with Disarmed, the target’s artifact’s Stat Slots are applied to your creature for all effects that relate to that attack.

Enemy artifacts are too unfocused and not powerful enough to make this perk worthwhile.
Suggestion: For every enemy with Disarmed, your creatures’ artifacts are more powerful.
Alternate Suggestion: Steal stats when attacking a Disarmed enemy.

Guiding Light (Cleric)
At the start of battle, your creatures gain a Barrier that absorbs damage equal to 1% of their Maximum Health per rank.
Saving Grace (Cleric)
After your creatures are resurrected, they gain a Barrier equal to 2% of their Maximum Health per rank.

Since Barriers were recently changed to scale off highest stat instead of Max Health, I feel these should too. Cleric would become more flexible as a result but still allow for health-stack builds to base the barriers on.

Admonish, Castigate, Condemn, Berate, Rebuke (Inquisitor)
At the start of battle, enemy (class) creatures are afflicted with (class-based debuff) and lose 30% (class-based stat).

Even with the extra boost these perks received they’re just too inconsistent, based on often-nonexistant enemy synergy, and often fail to perform even within their niche - for example, dropping 30% of the Speed of a Giant isn’t going to matter, since they’re already slow, and they don’t care too much about stat gain so Feared similarly won’t do a whole lot to them.

Suggestion: Base the stat drop on your own team’s composition, for instance “Enemies have _% less Speed for each Nature creature on your side”, sort of like an anti-tribalist. Make it a constant “have less” effect rather than a start of battle stat drop so that clever Inquisitors can use Morph spells to adapt which stat is being dropped at any given time if they’re using more than one of these perks. Drop the debuff aspect entirely as this is already a powerful effect.
Example: Admonish is changed to: “Enemies have _% less Intelligence for each Sorcery creature fighting on your side.”

Flagellation (Inquisitor)
Your creatures’ healing effects deal damage at 35% effectiveness when applied to enemies.

This is a very weak perk, as it is barely more damaging than Blight - which is both a common status effect and also itself infamously poor at damage output. To make matters worse it also conflicts with Blight, making you unable to damage Blighted enemies even if you try to use it.

Suggestion: Rework the perk entirely.
Alternate Suggestion: When an enemy is healed, they lose max HP.

Anguish Through Awareness (Animator)
Your Animatus starts battles with 1 random buff per rank.
Adaptation (Druid)
At the start of battle, your creatures gain a random buff for each creature missing from your group.
Batallion (Tribalist)
At the start of battle, your creatures gain a random buff for each creature that belongs to the same race fighting on your side. Maximum of 6 buffs.

The random buffs are often a bit too scattershot to be useful and don’t synergize too well.
Suggestion: Grant buffs in a specific order, similar to Eft Elder or Grovetender’s Nature’s Wrath.

Ancestry (Druid)
At the start of battle, if you have at least 5 creatures missing from your group, your creatures gain 1 random trait that belong to their race per rank.

The traits granted by this are often not useful or sometimes even outright counterproductive, depending on what you’re running.
Suggestion: Use the “innate trait is more powerful” effect from certain Master traits instead.

Companion (Druid)
You can have 1 additional creature per rank in your group without it counting against other Druid perks.

Suggestion: Taking this perk and then not taking the extra creatures it affords you should count them as extra missing creatures. This would increase Druid’s build and style options, making the true one-creature-build even more potent (though as always, not without risk).

Flow of Magic (Cabalist)
After your creatures cast an Ethereal Spell Gem, they gain Arcane.

Temporal Concentration already makes Cabalists get free Ethereal casts, so this doesn’t do much.

Suggestion: See changes proposed to Arcane above in this same post.
Alternate Suggestion: This perk specifically makes Arcane more powerful in some way.

Perplex (Sorcerer)
After an enemy takes damage from an attack, they have a 1% chance (15% max) per rank to be afflicted with Confused.

This seems generally weak, especially compared to the much easier to apply Bafflement (Trickster) or Mass Hysteria (Witchdoctor).
Suggestion: Works with any damage.

Graceful Spirit (Warden)
At the start of your creatures’ turns, they gain a Barrier that absorbs damage equal to 1% of their Maximum Health per rank.
Suggestion: Base on Highest Stat to keep it in line with the recent Barrier changes.

Rune of Lua/Cor/Dun/Nax/Sah (Rune Knight)
At the start of battle, your (class) creatures gain (relevant spell).

These being granted at battle start as ethereal spells only to certain classes gives Rune Knight as a whole a problem of being rather inflexible when it comes to builds, which is troublesome since their perkset seems to call for both stat-stacking (the rune spells having 100% stat basis), and a multi-class build (to get the benefit of perks that ask you to cast all rune spells in one battle).
Suggestion: Instead of gaining it at the start of battle, make the spells work like Colorwave in that creatures of the relevant class “always have” the spell. Similar to the proposed Inquisitor change, this will allow Morph spells and other class changing effects to be used to switch access between Rune spells, allowing for full use of the spec’s perk set and make build options much more flexible.

Diabolism (Rune Knight)
Your creatures are immune to Silenced.

Suggestion: Supplement or replace this with making Rune spells immune to sealing. Sealing is much harder to undo than silence and can effectively shut down the entire perk set for the rest of the battle.

Inspirit (Rune Knight)
Your creatures’ Rune spells grant them a buff which differs based on which spell it is.
Undermine (Rune Knight)
Your creatures’ Rune spells afflict enemies with a debuff which differs based on which spell it is.

These tend not to have much impact on battle. The debuffs in particular don’t line up with the rune spell they come from - Cor inflicts Burning, an int-based debuff, but Cor runs off Attack, for example. In addition, given how much Rune spells get cast, applying the same buff or debuff repeatedly doesn’t have much impact overall.
Suggestion: Change these to stat gains/stat reduction, for example Nax boosts Speed for whoever casts it. Since Nax runs off speed, this goes with the theme of the perk set getting more and more powerful as more rune spells are cast.

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CHAOS CREATURE TRAITS

Contagion (Venomous Clutcher)
After an enemy dodges, this creature afflicts it with Poisoned and Silenced.
Vehemence (Flamegrip Clutcher)
After an enemy dodges, this creature afflicts it with Burning and Scorned.

These have little effect if enemies are already afflicted with these debuffs, effectively wasting a trigger.
Suggestion: If the target already has Poisoned/Burned, the potency is increased when the effect is triggered.

Cock-a-doodle-doo (Contagious Cockatrice)
At the start of battle, your Cockatrice creatures gain a random Cockatrice trait. This trait does not stack.

Given how synergistic Cockatrice traits are (and the two you’d generally want don’t stack), this is fairly weak.
Suggestion: Share its fused or artifact trait with other Cockatrices. Doesn’t work if it appears more than once on the team.

Reticence (Sludgechemist)
Enemies gain 35% less benefit from their Artifacts’ Stat Slots (other than Health). This trait does not stack.

Given Concoctions hinge around using Disarmed which just disables artifact stat slots entirely, this doesn’t do much.
Suggestion: This creature always has Proficient and/or your Proficient creatures inflict Disarmed when attacking.

Awareness (Death Guard)
Your creatures no longer take additional damage from critical damage.

The main danger from critical damage often comes from triggered effects rather than the additional damage - though this isn’t an insignificant effect it does lack a little something, especially compared to other Doomguards.
Suggestion: Also mitigate a portion of class weakness damage on top of the current effect.

SKREEE!! (Harpy Screamer)
At the end of each enemy’s turn, this creature has a 20% chance to afflict it with Confused.

While Confused is a powerful effect, there are much more consistent ways to apply it - in addition, applying it at the end of the turn means it will take longer to actually do anything in battle.
Suggestion: Empower Confusion instead - make it harder to remove or longer-lasting.

Flesh Wound (Minotaur Juggernaut)
After this creature takes damage while below 50% Health, it gains a Barrier that absorbs damage equal to 100% of its Maximum Health.

Suggestion: Base on Highest Stat to keep it in line with recent Barrier changes.

Amongst Gods (Angel Bat)
After an ally Attacks, this creature heals your creatures equal to 15% of the damage dealt. This trait does not stack.

Compare with Mutated Vampire Bat’s Vampiric Aura:
After an ally Attacks, your creatures recover Health equal to 25% of the damage dealt.

Angel Bat is directly inferior by 10%, having the same effect.

Suggestion: Have Angel Bat grant buffs or statups instead.

DEATH CREATURE TRAITS

Abomination Brute - Flesh Rot
After an enemy is afflicted with either Weak or Vulnerable, this creature afflicts them with whichever of these debuffs the target doesn’t already have.

Several sources of Weak/Vulnerable already give both of these debuffs (Rapture, Wormrot, Misery, Master of Abominations), making the add-in not too useful.

Suggestion: Add in an additional debuff on top of those two, such as Feared or Cursed.

Ritual Abomination - Turn to Grey
After this creature is Attacked, enemies are afflicted with Vulnerable.

Once all enemies have Vulnerable (which, as with the above suggestion, isn’t hard to do), this creatures usefulness ends. This is especially apparent in teams that run Master of Abominations where enemies are given Weak/Vulnerable by default.

Suggestion: Give an additional effect similar to Magma Golem, such as dropping the defense of each enemy that already has Vulnerable when attacked.

Forsaken Seacrawler - Transmogrification
This creature starts battles with 5 random buffs, but cannot gain additional buffs.

The downside to this one is too harsh for what you get in return, especially since buffs aren’t generally too hard to come by.

Suggestion: Limit how many buffs the creature can get (similar to Satyr Squire), rather than making it impossible to get more.

Lich King - Hail to the King
At the start of battle, this creature gains Summon Conquest, Summon War, Summon Death, and Summon Famine.

This trait isn’t generally that useful - you have to take actions to actually gain the minions, often taking a few turns to set them all up.

Suggestion: This creature starts with the four horsemen already summoned.
Alternate Suggestion: Make it more similar to S3’s Lich King in that it starts with a large selection of random ethereal death spells.

Marine Pit Worm - Elusiveness
Creatures that have taken at least 5 turns are resistant to debuffs.

Compare to Gorum Apocalypse’s Quahn Harbinger:
Your creatures have a 25% chance to resist debuffs for each turn they’ve taken in the current battle. This trait does not stack.

Gorum Apocalypse takes its full effect a turn sooner AND only affects your own team, making Marine Pitworm’s completely undesirable by comparison.

Suggestion: Limit to user’s own team and make it kick in on the second turn.

Nix Exile - Subtlety
Your creatures deal 50% less damage while it’s their turn, and 50% more damage when it’s not. This trait does not stack.

Compare to Sparktail Student’s Bombshell:
Your creatures deal 75% more damage when it is not their turn. This trait does not stack.
Also compare to nether boss trait Shackler’s Trance:
This creature always deals 0 damage during its turn, but deals 200% more damage when it is not its turn.

Sparktail Student’s trait is outright superior due to having a better ratio AND no downside, and Shackler’s Trance is a more extreme version that would be a better pick if you’re going to hinge a creature’s function in the team around it.

Suggestion: Reverse the effect - enemies deal less damage during your creatures’ turns. Eliminate the downside.

Superbia Sin - Pride
This creature always has Repelling, and takes 30% less damage.

Compare to Angelic Voidlord’s Shadow Bulwark:
This creature always has Repelling, and ignores damage that isn’t dealt by attacks or spells.

While not completely equivalent, a 30% reduction is tremendously less desirable than eliminating an entire damage type. Compare also with Chaos Guard giving the entire team 25% reduction.

Suggestion: Add in Warded also.

LIFE CREATURE TRAITS

Mist Crusader - Galvanization
After this creature Attacks, it gains a Barrier that absorbs damage equal to 50% of its Health.
Priest of Radiance - Radiant Eclipse
At the start of this creature’s turn, it grants your creatures a Barrier that absorbs damage equal to 15% of its Maximum Health.

Suggestion: Base on highest stat to bring in line with Barrier changes.

Amphisbaena Gardener - Unrealized Potential
After your creatures gain stats, they gain these stats an additional time, but they gain 50% fewer stats. This trait does not stack.

There are very few effects that trigger on your own team gaining stats, so this doesn’t really trigger anything in any useful capacity.

Suggestion: Low chance to double value of all actions, akin to Doombringer’s Momentum.

Bismuth Paragon - Bismuth Attunement
Creatures gain 50% less stats. This trait does not stack.

Compare to Nix Imposter’s Starless:
Creatures cannot gain stats.

With Nix Imposter existing, it feels like there is little reason to take Bismuth Paragon if you’re going to build around preventing or countering stat gain.

Suggestion: Reduce all stat gain and loss effects by a much larger amount, say 80%.

Diamond Paragon - Diamond Attunement
All Spell Gems can never be sealed.

Diamond Paragon is one of two reasons why Sealing is currently in a rather iffy place mechanically (the other being the spell Chaos Spheres) - it just outright eliminates the mechanic entirely, making things like Cruncher builds completely useless.

Suggestion: Trait makes it so sealed gems can still be cast, but still count as sealed gems for the purpose of effects.

Stag Spirit - Like Sand
Your creatures’ ‘Cascading’ spells now consume 2 additional Charges while they have over 50% of their total Charges. This trait does not stack.

Compare to Eternaldew Gemling’s Tumble:
Your creatures’ Spell Gems with the ‘Cascading’ property now consume 3 Charges when cast, and are 50% more potent. This trait does not stack.

Eternaldew gives a benefit beyond just burning through charges faster to scale Cascading up.

Suggestion: Make Cascading gems act as if they have less charges than they actually do, allowing it to affect a broader range of spells.

Scheming Wisp - Poof!
This creature always deals critical damage and has an independent 50% chance to dodge attacks. After this creature takes damage, it is sent to the bottom of the Timeline.

Compare to Brownie Loner’s Independence:
This creature’s attacks always deal critical damage. In addition, this creature has an independent 30% chance to dodge attacks.

20% extra dodge chance over Brownie Loner isn’t really enough to justify such a heavy downside.

Suggestion: Boost the dodge chance a bit more.

Neralim Seraph - Chasing Infinity
If this creature has Provoked at least one time this battle, its spells no longer consume Charges.

Compare to Djinn Arcanomancer’s Ascendancy:
This creature can Cast without consuming Charges.

Djinn Arcanomancer starts battles with what Neralim Seraph has to take an extra step to obtain.

Suggestion: Spells get more potent/intelligence increases for each provoke after the first.

NATURE CREATURE TRAITS

Spitting Arachnalisk - Spit Poison
After this creature is Attacked, it afflicts enemies with Poisoned.

Compare with Magma Golem’s Cataclysm:
After this creature is Attacked, it afflicts enemies with Burning. If enemies already have this debuff, its potency is increased by 30% instead.

Suggestion: Give the potency-boosting effect from Cataclysm to Spit Poison to make it more useful.

SORCERY CREATURE TRAITS

War Automaton - Downturn
At the start of this creature’s turn, it removes 1 buff from each enemy.

This just largely isn’t powerful enough to be worth it, since there are many better ways to remove debuffs from enemies.

Suggestion: Remove 2 or 3 instead.

Subaqueous Dragon - Blend
At the start of battle, your Fused creatures’ classes change to match that of their primary parent.

This is rather difficult to use effectively - I tried to use it in a Rune Knight build once and ultimately just found it easier to plan my build more carefully without it than with it. In addition, if you’re using it to stack same-class effects, Sphinx Justicar’s Recombobulation is far more effective.

Suggestion: Make it more desirable by having creatures that get their classes changed by this effect get some kind of bonus alongside it.

Rockmoss Gemling - Obelisk
Your creatures’ Ethereal Spell Gems have the same number of Charges that they’d have if they weren’t Ethereal.

The effect this grants is rather easily dismissed since Ethereal gems restock charges between battles anyway, and since they can’t be granted Cascading there’s not really much to synergize them with.

Suggestion: Ethereal gems don’t use charges, but take a potency penalty in return.

Gorgon Gazer - Deterioration
Enemy creatures deal 10% less damage with attacks and spells (up to 90%) for each creature with Stone that is fighting on their side. This trait does not stack.

Suggestion: Just a wording change - the maximum this effect can reach is a 60% reduction due to there only being six enemies that can have Stone.

Transcended Phoenix - Alternate Reality
Your other creatures take 40% less damage while this creature is alive. Your other creatures take 100% more damage while this creature is dead. This trait does not stack.

Compare to Efflorescent Ent’s Black Lotus:
Your creatures take 40% less damage while they have Mending. This trait does not stack.
Additionally, to nether trait Qila’s Safeguard:
While your creatures have Barrier, they take 40% less damage. This trait does not stack.

This is a rather severe downside for an effect you can easily find elsewhere.

Suggestion: Eliminate the downside, reduce protection granted, make effect persist while creature is dead.

Thunderstruck Phoenix - Thundershock
After your creatures are resurrected, 3 enemies are afflicted with Stone.

Compare to Gorgon Trickster’s Treachery:
At the start of battle, this creature afflicts enemies with Stone.

This is likely a holdover from when Stone was a disabling effect.

Suggestion: Afflict Sleep and Vulnerable instead.

Plague Surgeon - Liberation
This creature Casts spells 1 additional time for each debuff it has.

Compare to Sadomasochist’s Vendetta:
This creature Attacks and Casts an additional number of times equal to the number of debuffs it has.

Sadomasochist gets the same effect and more from the same trigger.

Suggestion: Plague Surgeon’s extra casts have a chance to be considered manual, increasing in chance with each debuff it has.

Raven Seer - Farsight
After your creatures gain a buff, they Cast a random spell. This trait does not stack.
Evil Vortex - Squall
After an enemy is afflicted with a debuff, this creature Casts a random spell.

These effects are absurdly overpowered, especially if stacked - especially given the random spells can grant further buffs and debuffs. You can hit the spell limit every single turn with no effort from just these traits.

Suggestion: Limit how many times they can trigger per turn.

Pestilence Crafter - Incursion
Your creatures’ ‘Afflict Debuff On Damage’ properties have a 100% greater chance to activate. This trait does not stack.
Hammer Lord - War Forged
Your creatures’ “Gain Buff On Damage” properties have a 100% greater chance to activate. This trait does not stack.

Slates and Curios tend to, as far as i’m aware, not be quite as popular as the other trick slot materials. Boosting the effect from its base of 20% to 40% isn’t really going to make them more desirable - especially Slates, which can only really apply their effect once at a time.

Suggestion: Reduce chance boost a bit, but make it so that when the effect triggers, if the creature already has the buff/debuff it grants, it will apply it to a different creature instead.

Bard Poet - Hymn of Guile
Enemies cannot be Invisible.

Compare to backer trait Insight:
Your creatures can target Invisible enemies.

This is too hard a counter - it renders shades absolutely useless, and makes the Tenebris GOTG boss fight completely lose its gimmick altogether.

Suggestion: Limit how many enemies can be invisible at one time.

MULTICLASS CREATURE TRAITS

Lagergoyle - Drinking Game
At the start of each enemy’s turn, they have a 5% chance to be killed. This trait does not stack.

While increasing the chance would absolutely make this overpowered, it still feels not worth taking due to just… being able to kill enemies the old fashioned way. It’s also useless outside of normal battles.

Suggestion: Give a selection of ethereal booze spells at battle start.

Erebyss - Avenged Sevenfold
After your creatures take damage from an attack or spell, they Cast a Scourge spell on the enemy. The type of Scourge spell is based on the enemy’s class. This trait does not stack.

While potentially good, outside of int-based builds it lacks the power that might be expected of an Avatar-level trait.

Suggestion: Scourge spell potency is based on the caster’s highest stat.
Alternate Suggestion: In addition to casting a Scourge spell, it also casts the appropriate Living Lance spell.

Gonfurian - Eraser
After your creatures Attack, they reduce the target’s Maximum Health by the same amount of damage dealt. This trait does not stack.

Compare to Pit Wraith Overmind’s Soul Squelch:
After this creature Attacks, it reduces the target’s Maximum Health to its Current Health.
Also compare to the minion Famine:
After Famine’s master attacks, it decreases the target’s Maximum Health by an amount equal to 30% of the damage dealt.

While Gonfurian grants health reduction effects to the entire team, Overmind’s is far more useful because it can also take advantage of damage it didn’t cause, and with some building can be made to attack multiple creatures in one turn. It’s also easy to grant Famine to the entire team, which while less powerful than Gonfurian’s effect, means that Gonfurian isn’t bringing anything unique or powerful to the table as an avatar should.

Suggestion: Reduce all of the target’s stats when attacking rather than just Max Health.
Alternate Suggestion: Effect applies to spell damage also.

Lister - Perfect Imperfection
Your creatures deal 40% more damage and take 10% less damage for each turn they’ve taken in the current battle. At the start of battle, your creatures gain the Timewalk spell. This trait does not stack.

Compare to Patientias Sanctus’s Patience:
Your creatures deal 35% more damage with attacks and spells for each turn they’ve fought in the current battle. This trait does not stack.
Also compare to Inox Apocalypse’s Naxor Harbinger:
Your creatures deal 40% more damage for each turn they’ve taken in the current battle. This trait does not stack.

It’s kind of obvious how this was supposed to work, but Timewalk doesn’t actually increment the turn counter at all, making this a confusing trait that just blends two existing creatures together and adds in a spell that doesn’t really synergize with either of them.

Suggestion: Make this trait cause Timewalk to increment the turn counter when cast on your own creatures. In addition, since Timewalk can’t be spammed, make this trait cause it to affect your whole team if cast on an ally.

Azural - Wintermaul
At the start of this creature’s turn, it Casts Snowstorm. After your creatures Attack a Frozen enemy, they Cast Shatter on it. This trait does not stack.

Similarly to Erebyss’s trait, this is potentially good but lacks the punch needed to be worthy of an avatar.

Suggestion: Shatter cast potency runs off the caster’s highest stat. Give Snowstorm an increased chance to freeze.

Nightveil Construct - Forsaken Horizon
This creature can Cast Arsenal Spells without consuming Charges.

Compare to Djinn Arcanomancer’s Ascendancy:
This creature can Cast without consuming Charges.

Outright inferior to Djinn since it gets free casts of everything, rather than a subset of spells.

Suggestion: This creature’s arsenal spells that only affect the caster now affect the whole team.

Tisya - Heartrage
At the end of each creature’s turn, this creature deals damage to a random enemy equal to 30% of its lowest stat.

Lowest stat tends to be rather difficult to synergize with since you don’t really plan around it, in addition it only dealing 30% of it is kind of a compounding set of counterbalances that makes this weaker than it should be.

Suggestion: Change basis to the average of Tisya’s highest and lowest stat.

Mud Golem - Slop
After this creature is Attacked, enemies are afflicted with Blind.

Blind isn’t among the more powerful or impactful of status effects, so this could use a power boost.

Suggestion: Enemies that are already blinded lose Speed.

Life Shapeshifter - Life Transformation
When your creatures heal an enemy, it instead takes damage equal to 25% of the amount it would have been healed. This trait does not stack.

This has the same problem as Inquisitor’s Flagellation perk - it’s basically just permanent blight, but also has anti-synergy with Blight that causes it to deal no damage to blighted enemies. In addition, the damage output is very, very low, making it better to just attack normally instead.

Suggestion: Make it the inverse of Death Shapeshifter, turning self-inflicted stat reductions into stat gains with a 50% penalty.

NON-CREATURE TRAITS

Nether Trait - Final Act of Judgment
At the start of this creature’s turn, deal damage to all enemies equal to 0.5% of their Current Health for every 1% of Health thie creature is missing. The damage cannot exceed 25% of each creatures’ Current Health.

Compare to Troll King’s Sadism
At the start of this creature’s turn, enemies take damage equal to 15% of their Current Health.
Also compare to Siege Automaton’s Battle From Within*:
At the start of this creature’s turn, it deals damage to enemies equal to 25% of its missing Health.

Sadism does by default what FAoJ does at 30% health lost. Battle from Within also has no cap on its effect, unlike FAoJ. In addition, since FAoJ caps out at 25%, it’s actually worse in terms of damage than Bleed is. That’s not good!

Suggestion: Damage caused by this trait is not mitigated by damage reduction and ignores a chunk of defense.

Nether Trait - Final Act of Mercy
At the start of this creature’s turn, it kills all enemies that are below 25% Health.

Good, but completely useless outside of normal battles.

Suggestion: Deals damage instead of one-shotting outside of normal battles.

Nether Trait - Loid’s Laugh
After an enemy Casts a spell, it loses 20% Intelligence and is afflicted with Silenced. This trait does not stack.
Nether Trait - Loid’s Visage
After an enemy Attacks, it loses 20% Attack and is afflicted with Scorned. This trait does not stack.

Compare to Dragon Revenant’s Dynamic Dragon Scales:
After an enemy Casts a spell, this creature reduces all enemies’ Intelligence by 35%. This trait does not stack.
Also compare to Dragon Scout’s Deflective Dragon Armor:
After an enemy attacks, this creature reduces all enemies’ Attack by 20%. This trait does not stack.

Dragon Scouts and Revenants are able to very quickly wipe out the entire team’s offensive power, in a way that Loid’s single-target reduction adding Scorn and Silenced (something that can be easily replicated through perks or Siren Ascendant) doesn’t really make up for.

Suggestion: Increase the amount of stats lost. Alternatively, also add Feared so the enemy can’t recoup the stats quickly.

Nether Trait - Nerlyx’s Veil
After your creatures Defend, they have a 50% chance to take another turn. This trait does not stack.

With a bit of stacking, this can be applied a ridiculous amount of times making it incredibly overpowered. With this in a proper build i’ve had my creatures take around 25-30 turns before the timeline progresses at all.

Suggestion: Only gives one extra turn at a time.

Nether Trait - Tellur’s Scales
This creature takes 5% less damage (up to 90%) for each time it has taken damage in the current battle.

Compare to Sentry Guard’s Fortification:
Your creatures take 5% less damage for each time they’ve taken damage in the current battle. Maximum of 90% damage reduction. This trait does not stack.

While these could be stacked, there’s not really any reason to take Tellur’s Scales over Fortification if it comes down to a choice.

Suggestion: Trait ramps up in effect more quickly.

Nether Trait - Hoo Ho Ha
After this creature is killed, it is resurrected as Imp Impington Prime.

Suggestion: The benefit of turning into Imp Impington Prime (stat boost? new trait? i’m not actually sure) should be made more clear in the trait text.

Mastery Trait - Master of Apises
If all the creatures in your party are Apises, they are resistant to debuffs.

Putting an Apis Protector in slots 2 and 5 replicates this effect completely.

Suggestion: Make it work like Master of Vortexes, except grant a full Apis team Apis Endurer’s Long Live rather than Spiral Ward.

Mastery Trait - Master of Crusaders
Your Crusaders start battles with Shelled.

This doesn’t really synergize with Crusaders at all, given they’re very tanky to begin with and it doesn’t play into why you’d take Crusaders.

Suggestion: Crusaders share their on-attack effects with each other. This allows non-attacking ones like Blood and Dawn to get access to attacking effects.

Mastery Trait - Master of Gargantuans
Your Gargantuans have a 50% chance to avoid damage while they’re Defending or Provoking. This trait does not stack.

Compare to Master of Doomguards:
Your Doomguards have a 20% chance to avoid damage, or 50% if they are Defending or Provoking. This trait does not stack.

It’s strange this is the same trait as Doomguards but worse, especially since Gargantuans are going to be less inclined to defend or provoke than Doomguards as a general rule, plus Doomguards are more tanky to begin with.

Suggestion: Chance to automatically defend for each Gargantuan you have on your team, to better leverage the trait.

Mastery Trait - Master of Golems
At the start of battle, your Golems gain the Mechanical Illusion trait. If they already have this trait, they gain the Sense of Purpose and Embolden traits instead.

Embolden needs some consideration, because it doesn’t work with adjacent Embolden users - if all golems get it, none of them benefit from it.
Mechanical Illusion also needs some thought, because the golems will transform into other creatures and stop being golems.
Finally, it’s possible to get the best benefit of this trait by taking Self-Awareness with Sense of Purpose anyway, giving it to all your golems at once.

Suggestion: Consider adding in the traits of War Golem and Gold Golem instead.

Mastery Trait - Master of Minotaurs
Your Minotaurs Attack 1 additional time for each Minotaur fighting on your side. Your creatures deal 50% less damage. This trait does not stack.

Identical to Master of Brownies other than the race it works off - but where Brownies synergize very well with it from their on-attack effects, Minotaurs revolve around taking damage and being at low health instead, so it doesn’t really work for them.

Suggestion: Minotaurs act as if they have a percentage less health than they actually do for each Minotaur you have.

Mastery Trait - Master of Pit Wraiths
If all the creatures in your party are Pit Wraiths, they are resistant to debuffs.

Identical to Master of Apises, and doesn’t really do a whole lot for Pit Wraiths in general.

Suggestion: Pit Wraiths are given the Decrepify trait, or Soul Squelch if they already have that.

Mastery Trait - Master of Sanctuses
If you have 6 different Sanctuses in your party, they gain a random Sin trait at the start of battle. This trait does not stack.
Mastery Trait - Master of Sins
If you have 6 different Sins in your party, they gain a random Sanctus trait at the start of battle. This trait does not stack.

Quite a lot of these traits don’t stack so you could get useless duplicates, and certain Sin traits could be harmful to a build if not planned around.

Suggestion: Each Sanctus and Sin always gets the trait of its counterpart - Acedia gets Diligence while Industrias gets Sloth, for example.

Mastery Trait - Master of Sphinxes
Your Sphinxes start battles with Rebirth.

This doesn’t synergize much with Sphinxes, in addition since they have effective stacking traits they’re usually not at too much risk of being killed early in the battle.

Suggestion: A full team of Sphinxes get extra counts towards their class-stacking effects.

Pandemonium Trait - Pandemonium Alacrity
This creature has 30% less Speed. At the start of battle, its Attack and Intelligence are set equal to its Speed.

If you’re going to stack Speed, you’re not going to use Attack and Intelligence anyway (arrow spells, etc), so scaling them off a cut-down version of Speed isn’t going to be all that useful.

Suggestion: Lowest stat is dumped into Speed and then minimized at start of battle.

Pandemonium Trait - Pandemonium Life
After an enemy Casts a spell, they take damage equal to 2% of their Current Health for every 1 Maximum Charge the Spell Gem has.

In the most effective case where an enemy casts Magic Missile, this will do 70% of health in damage… but if they hit you with a powerful spell like Rapture, they’ll take 2% instead. It’s hard to synergize this around enemy gems since they’re so random.

Suggestion: Make the trait’s damage based around the max charge count of the trait bearer’s first spell gem instead.

Backer Trait - The Shadows
After this creature is killed for the first time in battle, it is resurrected with 20% Health and gains 50% Attack and Intelligence.

Compare to Roofstalker Wight’s Afterlife:
After this creature dies for the first time in battle, it resurrects with 50% Health, and 50% more Attack, Intelligence, Defense, and Speed.

Directly inferior to pre-existing trait.

Suggestion: Reduce stat gain somewhat but make the effect shared across the whole team.

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It should be noted that extra casts already count as manual. (but this may be a bug - I reported it here and didn’t get a response either way)

I will add to this and Mention the two Master traits which are

Master of Paragon and Master of Wyverns. Both that do the exact same thing which is take 80% less damage from spells, Paragons master trait needing a whole team of paragon’s for the trait to function while Wyverns master trait isn’t specific aside from just any wyvern taking 80% less damage.

Here’s another one:
Master of Shades gives your creatures Invisible at the start of battle if they’re all Shades.
Master of Nixes gives your creatures Invisible at the start of battle and a 25% chance to avoid damage if they’re all Nixes.

Master of Shades could probably do with an extra effect.

I spotted another couple of comparisons that nobody’s mentioned yet.

Giran’s Strategy and Invidia Sin. The former lets you set the wielder’s stats to those of five of your creatures in specific slots in your party, while Invidia Sin just automatically targets your creatures with the highest stats. I imagine that cases where you want the highest stats of all your other creatures are much more common than cases where you want specifically-calibrated stats that might or might not be the highest, and Invidia Sin also lets you take more than one stat from one creature while also not disrupting positional-based synergies like Apis Protector or Regalis. There are probably teams where Giran’s Strategy in particular is useful, but I feel like it’s incredibly situational compared to Invidia Sin.

Lion’s Roar and Dread Spectre. When the wielder of one of these traits is attacked, Lion’s Roar reduces the attacker’s Attack and Defense by 20% each, while Dread Spectre reduces the attacker’s Attack, Intelligence, Defense and Speed by 25% each. And as if that wasn’t bad enough, Lion’s Roar only exists as a trait material, so you can’t get it from Assassination missions and it comes with the opportunity cost of not being able to use other material-only traits.

Couple more that I noticed on my travels.

Whiskull and Leper Blightbringer. The former has a 25% chance at the start of each enemy’s turn to inflict a random debuff, while Leper Blightbringer is the exact same except it’s guaranteed. The Leper just straight-up outclasses Whiskull, as far as I can tell.

Heads or Tails and Masochist Witch. The former has a 50% chance to give the wielder a random buff when they Attack and otherwise inflicts the target with a random debuff. The latter’s trait always does both. I don’t see a circumstance where you’d want to take Heads or Tails instead of using a Masochist Witch, and like Lion’s Roar, Heads or Tails only exists as a trait material so it’s much harder to get a hold of and takes up a trait material slot, so there’s even an opportunity cost to it as well.

Unmending (Pit Wraith Obliterator) makes enemies take .5% more damage for every 1% health they have. This is outright better in almost every scenario than Through the Gloom (Pit Wraith Lord). Through the Gloom increases your creature damage by, at most, 5% over Unmending, and that’s when a foe is at 90% health. As soon as the foe drops to 89% Health, Unmending increases enemy recieved damage by 44.5%, while Through the Gloom gives 0% bonus damage. Add in that Unmending should, by trait description, increase indirect damage via debuff, while Through the Gloom doesn’t, and it’s hard to think of a spot for Through the Gloom. Since Aimed Shot deals 200% more attack damage to targets at full health, Through the Gloom could go up to 75% or even 100%, since it affects the party, as well as attacks and spells.

Wallop (Brownie Captain) and Decrepify (Pit Wraith Dominator) have a lot of overlap. Decrepify gives slightly more defense decrease, while Wallop spreads it around. Maybe decrease Wallop’s stat loss a bit?

Another i’ve noticed:

Anxiety (Forsaken Plaguebearer)
This creature’s Spell Gems don’t consume any Charges, but are sealed after they’re Cast.

Again, directly inferior to:
Ascendancy (Djinn Arcanomancer)
This creature can Cast without consuming Charges.

Suggest giving Plaguebearer a potency boost or multiple casts.

Two more I think could use a balance tweak:

Charity (Caritas Sanctus)
After this creature is healed, it heals one of your other creatures for the same amount. This trait does not heal creatures that also have this trait.

Compare against:
Dispersion (Blood Slime)
After this creature is healed, your other creatures that don’t have this trait are healed for 50% of the amount as well.

While Dispersion does take a cut from the heal, it does heal all of your creatures rather than a randomly picked one, making it drastically more useful in almost every application than Charity.

Suggest allowing Charity to also share buff gains, stat up gains, and spell gem gains, making it more broadly useful.

Patience (Patientias Sanctus)
Your creatures deal 35% more damage with attacks and spells for each turn they’ve fought in the current battle. This trait does not stack.

Compare against:
Naxor Harbinger (Inox Apocalypse)
Your creatures deal 40% more damage for each turn they’ve taken in the current battle. This trait does not stack.

Both do the same thing, but Patience accumulates 5% less per turn, and is not applied to indirect damage like Naxor Harbinger is.

I’m not really sure what to suggest for this one. While they can be stacked together, it still feels like it would be more appropriate to not have duplicate effects.

Leper Blightbringer and Abyss Orbs are another pair that needs review. Leper Blightbringer hits each enemy with a random debuff at the start of their turn, while Abyss Orbs does the same thing only after three turns have passed. Leper Blightbringer is simply superior here, and doesn’t have the opportunity cost of only being able to be put on an artifact trait slot. Also compare Luxury Automaton, which hits the entire enemy team with a random debuff at the start of its own turn, for another example of a trait which completely outclasses Abyss Orbs. There’s room for both Leper Blightbringer and Luxury Automaton, since the former guarantees each enemy will be debuffed before it gets its turn but the latter lets you debuff the entire enemy team at once if you invest in Speed, but both outclass Abyss Orbs.

Perdition Guard and Apis Defender might also be worth looking at. Perdition Guard intercepts attacks on its adjacent allies, while Apis Defender intercepts attacks on all of its allies. Technically, Perdition Guard has a niche in protecting two of your creatures from attacks while allowing the other three to still be able to activate when-attacked triggers, but I’m struggling to think of a situation where you have a creature that intercepts allied attacks and putting the when-attacked triggers on the intercepting creature isn’t the best idea, and at that point you’d be as well using Apis Defender anyway. Maybe Perdition Guard could also intercept all single-target effects on adjacent creatures? It’s a narrower but more thorough defense, which gives it more of a niche.

Master of Soulflayers, Master of Ents, and to an extent Master of Osseins are all quite similar to each other, but each is stronger and/or more versatile than the last. Master of Soulflayers resurrects your Soulflayers with 10% Health the first time they’re killed if the entire team is made up of Soulflayers. Master of Ents, on the other hand, does the same thing for your Ents, but doesn’t require the entire team to be Ents - so while it has the exact same effect for the type of creature it’s a Master of, Master of Ents can be used on teams with creatures other than Ents, giving it more versatility.

And then there’s Master of Osseins. If all the creatures in your party are Osseins, they begin battle with Rebirth, and Rebirth restores them to 100% Health. While it’s not guaranteed to work like the other two are (buffs can be dispelled), it does allow for synergy with effects that count how many buffs you have, or traits like Igneous Ossein which interact with Rebirth specifically, which would pretty much cancel it out and make it even with the other two… except it also makes Rebirth revive your creatures at 100% Health, not 10%, which is a significant bump. The other two could probably do with being modified or brought up a little in power to compensate, even though resurrection is the Ossein race’s whole Thing.

Honestly, I feel like the way the Master of Ents trait is handled compared to Master of Soulflayers (i.e. affects the race of creatures but doesn’t require the whole party to be made up of them) is a good framework for how Master traits should work in general, and would open up more options for teambuilding since different parts of your team could benefit from different Master traits. Maybe limit them to only working if you have at least two/three creatures of the requisite race to activate them? But I’m no game developer, and I don’t know what impacts that would have on balance.

Empire (Elqor)
This creature’s spells are 90% less potent, but it casts them 3 additional times.

Compare to:
Triple Take (War Golem)
This creature Attacks and Casts spells 2 additional times.

Elqor is heavily penalized for something that isn’t really much more powerful than War Golem, AND on top of that War Golem’s trait also applies to attacks.

Suggestion: Reduce Elqor’s penalty a bit.

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In addition to this post, i’ve noticed another issue with Master of Shades.

Master of Shades (Shade Master)
If all the creatures in your party are Shades, they start battles with Invisible.

Compare with this combination:
Shackler’s Domination (Shackler’s Chains)
Your Shades share their innate traits with each other.
+
Spook (Gateway Shade)
At the start of battle, this creature gains Invisible. This creature deals 200% more damage while it is Invisible. This creature’s Invisible buff is no longer removed at the start of its turn.

You are likely going to use Gateway Shade anyway if you are running Master of Shades due to the damage boost.

However, taking Shackler’s Domination over Master of Shades with a Gateway Shade on your team grants the whole benefit of Master of Shades AND a huge damage boost AND a more resilient invisibility for your whole team.

Master of Shades really, really needs a buff due to being so heavily outclassed by this combination.

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