Feedback:User/Konig Des Todes/Helping Skill Balance

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Perhaps one of the most time consuming maintenance for Guild Wars lies in the skill balancing. This suggestion is to help reduce this and make it more plausible to make a completely balanced game, skill-wise. In full, my suggestion can be brought down to a single phrase which was kept in mind when ArenaNet made Guild Wars 2: "reduce the number of skills".

Larger amounts of skills results in more possibilities; more possibilities amounts to making it harder to predict all those possibilities and in turn, harder to balance the skills. However, I'm an adamant hater of simply removing content, so this suggestion is geared in a way in which not a single skill will be removed from the game, while simultaneously reducing the number of skills required to be balanced.

What I suggest boils down to three parts:

Reducing Available Skills[edit]

To keep versatility among various builds available, a large number of skills must remain. However, at the same time, too many skills create greater imbalance. So the appropriate number of skills available must be discerned and settled upon. After much deliberating and after a previous, similar, suggestion I made I have come to a conclusion for the number of skills. But before that, let's recap the number of skills available. There are:

  • 140 Warrior skills (36 Elites)
  • 140 Ranger skills (35 Elites)
  • 132 Necromancer skills (35 Elites)
  • 131 Monk skills (35 Elites)
  • 137 Mesmer skills (35 Elites)
  • 144 Elementalist skills (35 Elites)
  • 110 Assassin skills (25 Elites)
  • 110 Ritualist skills (25 Elites)
  • 85 Dervish skills (15 Elites)
  • 85 Paragon skills (15 Elites)
  • 73 PvE-only skills (3 Elites) - counting the Kurzick/Luxon ones has only one skill

As one can see, the expansion professions are at a great disability compared to the core professions - who themselves don't even have an equal number of skills. Even worse is how the warrior - who would be much more limited in utilizing multiple weapon attributes - is only barely greater than other professions, and the elementalist who has 5 attributes like the warrior has only a few more skills than the other core professions.

I propose reducing the number of skills available to 15 skills per attribute - with the "no attribute" at a lower number of 10 - per profession. This naturally means that the Elementalist and the Warrior would have the most skills, but comparison wise, to make use of the wider variety of skills they'd need to spread out their skills; the only counter to this would be to give the Warrior and Elementalist fewer skills-per-attribute, but I'll keep it simple for the suggestion. For Elite skills, I'd limit it to 3 per attribute, including the No Attribute portion - leading to a total of 18 skills per attribute, with 13 at the No Attribute section (per profession).

In the end, it'll look like this:

Profession Skills per Attribute Total Non-Elite Skills Total Elite skills
Warrior 103 85 18
Ranger 85 70 15
Monk 85 70 15
Necromancer 85 70 15
Mesmer 85 70 15
Elementalist 103 85 18
Assassin 85 70 15
Ritualist 85 70 15
Dervish 85 70 15
Paragon 85 70 15
Total 886 730 156

Effectively reducing from 1214 skills to 886 skills (not counting PvE-only skills or PvP-only versions)

PvP-only/PvE-only Skills Version 2.0[edit]

Here comes the means to keep the skills in the game. PvP and PvE play very differently - ArenaNet realized this and created a split between a PvP version and a PvE version of skills. With this reduction of skills in mind, I'd like to create an alternative method: locking skills out of a specific format.

By doing this, you can balance a skill to a specific format, have only one version of the skill, and not remove any skills from the game. The means to decide which skills are removed from what format (I won't bother listing specific skills other than examples) would be those which could be considered the "problem children" of builds. For example, Smiter's Boon would be locked out of PvP completely, available only to use in PvE, rather than just nerfed to oblivion with the "promise" that it'd be properly balanced in the future for PvP. The same would be done for skills that are a problem in PvE.

Dervish and Paragon skill amount[edit]

As I'm sure you may have noticed, this change is not changing the number of Dervish and Paragon skills in any one format - though it would be moving skills about between the attributes. This is fine as is, though it gives them as slight disadvantage in that the skills would either have to be split like currently done or that the PvE and PvP version of the skills will function the same - in that, I mean, we're already artificially creating alternate skills for them, without reducing the skills but maintaining the theme of a skill.

To balance things out I would move skills from warrior/ranger/monk to paragon and elementalist/necromancer(ice theme skills only)/warrior to dervish; simply recoloring the hue of the icon (or changing it fully) and in most cases, due to the similar themes/fields, the conversion would work well. This would also help in any case of there being too many warrior or elementalist skills even considering locking them out of one format without making the PvP and PvE skill lists too different.