ArenaNet:Developer updates/20070306

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ArenaNet Image This is a copy of the Developer Updates webpage, maintained by members of the Guild Wars Team. It includes semi-official announcements, clarifications, and news from the developers, notable background information about skill balances or to clarify rumors.
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[Dev Update] Skill Updates and Hero Battles -- 06 March 2007

It's time for another official Dev Update, straight from the Guild Wars Design Team. This week, we'll be making some changes, including a modest number of skill balances and an alteration to Hero Battles. So here's the latest news, with an outline of the upcoming changes and a note about the why's and wherefore's of each.


Upon reviewing the first half of the Celestial Tournament, we’ve decided to balance some skills to improve the competitive environment. These changes will take effect after 12:01 PM PST on Wednesday, March 7 to allow completion of Round 4 of the tournament.

This permanent update addresses critical balance issues within the tournament and is not a temporary weekend implementation. We are still working on a larger play balance review in preparation for next weekend’s event.

Ritualist

The following skills have changed:

When these skills were first implemented, they required the caster to be very close to a Spirit in order to use them effectively. We recently changed all such skills to work at a much greater distance, though they became too powerful. Our intention is for these skills to remain effective but not be out of scope with other damage-dealing options.

Necromancer

The following skill has changed:

  • Discord: increased casting time to 2 seconds.
We have been pleased to see Discord useful in a variety of PvP and RP situations, but its rate of sustained damage output is excessive. Increasing the casting time lowers the damage output to a reasonable amount while giving opponents an opportunity to use general purpose counters such as interruption and Condition/Hex removal.

Assassin

The following skills have changed:

Shadow Prison was simply too powerful for its cost, thus the increase to its Energy cost. The damage from Blades of Steel was out of scale with that of other dual-attack skills. We hope that these skill changes will encourage build diversity for Assassins and Warrior/Assassins, and we believe both of these skills will remain viable but not superior to other options.

Mesmer

The following skill has changed:

With a ¼ second casting time, this skill was too fast and powerful as a source of follow-up damage.

Hero Battles

We’re taking this opportunity to make a change to Hero Battles. Currently, very defensive builds are capable of holding the center shrine, needlessly slowing down games and homogenizing strategies. As a result, we’ve made the following change:

  • Capturing and holding any or all shrines on the map now contributes to your morale. The center shrine now grants twice the amount of positive “pip” arrows on the morale meter than other capture points. The secondary benefits associated with these shrines will remain unchanged.
We feel this change will impact movement, tactics, and build creation in a positive manner and will generally make battles more competitive and interesting. With the upcoming Hero Battles ladder on the horizon, we felt a need to improve this format before the ladder is put into place. We will continue to monitor this venue and adjust this mechanic as needed.


So that's it! As I mentioned, this update will be streamed into Guild Wars sometime tomorrow afternoon. As always, your thoughts are welcome, and we invite your feedback on these changes after you've had a chance to try them out and see how they function in the game. We'll be reading the fansite forums and gleaning your input. --Gaile Gray 20:58, 6 March 2007 (EST)