[Dev Update] Shadow Form Balance Changes - 2 July 2008
The primary goal of this update is to address the high efficiency of Shadow Form farming builds. It had long been possible to maintain Shadow Form permanently, but when the duration of this skill was increased, many new and more powerful build options became viable. We are not opposed to players using Shadow Form for farming, but it is not good for the game economy for high-end farming activities to become too easy or too efficient. The new set of builds enabled by Shadow Form did exactly that.
This update is intended to bring builds based around Shadow Form more in line with other farming builds. In order to accomplish this, we’ve not only altered Shadow Form itself but also made some changes to creatures within the Chaos Planes. At this time, we have not made it more difficult to maintain Shadow Form permanently, because this would be more likely to remove Shadow Form farming as an option for many players. We will, however, continue to monitor the effects of these changes moving forward and will make further changes if necessary.
- Shadow Form: now reduces the damage dealt by the caster by 50% while active.
This is intended to slow down killing while under the effects of Shadow Form. We recognize that this does not affect killing by Health degeneration. That is primarily being addressed through the creature changes listed below.
- Added Hex Breaker to Mindblade Spectres found in the Underworld.
- Several Banished Dream Riders Chaos Plains region of the Underworld have been replaced with Cursed Dream Riders.
- When Cursed Dream Riders are killed, they cause Mindflay Spectres to spawn. Mindflay Spectres have Signet of Disenchantment instead of Hex Breaker.
The use of Hex Breaker by Mindblade Specters should require more skillful play by characters who are using Shadow Form in conjunction with hexes. Because Shadow Form does not protect against Signet of Disenchantment, these characters will also want to avoid confrontations with Mindflay Spectres. The net effect of these changes should be to decrease the overall killing speed for Shadow Form characters in the Underworld.