SKILL AND ATTRIBUTE OVERHAUL
In order to further flesh out the skills and allow greater specialisation of characters it is suggested that there be the addition of three more attributes, being; Constitution, Wisdom and Agility. Each attribute plays a specific role in base areas of the character as well as being key to skill level progression. Each attribute is beneficial for all character builds in some way.
Strength is a measure of raw physical power, the ability to manipulate matter with muscles. It is the primary attribute for warrior types, and useful for all classes.
Affects: Base Damage
Constitution is a measure of your overall Health and hardiness, how well you resist adverse conditions and strains. To reflect this, a high constitution can increase your Health. All classes benefit from high constitution, but warrior classes more so than others.
Affects: Base Health
Dexterity is a measure of deftness and hand/eye coordination, the ability to use your hands well. It is the primary attribute of Rangers, and most of their skills are based on dexterity.
Affects: To Hit %
Agility is a measure of how coordinated you are overall, how well you handle movements of your whole body, and a good agility will help you avoid blows coming your way.
Affects: Base AC
Intelligence is a measure of quickness and accuracy of thought, basically, how well you can think. Intelligence is the primary attribute for all magic using classes, and is certainly useful for all others as well.
Affects: Base Mana
Wisdom is many things, but primarily it is a measure of 'sense', in the 'common sense' or 'horse sense' meaning. Which is to say, it is a measure of planning ability and learning from experience. It is the primary attribute of all clerical types, and helps all classes ability to learn.
Affects: Skill Learn Rate
Base Statistic Changes
With the addition of the three new attributes we now have a pretty solid model for a direct correlation between attributes and base character statistics. Currently pretty much everyone gets the same number of Health, Mana, Hit% and base Armour. The proposal with advanced attributes in that they now play a much greater role in these base character statistics. As outlined above, each of the six attributes has a direct influence on a base statistic.
For example lets look at Constitution and Health. Currently most of a players Health is a direct result of the players level. With this new model, players would have a very small increase per level and then a much bigger increase due to the players Constitution. The direct formula still needs to be worked out for each of the base statistics, but something like this may work:
Health = Level + CON * 2
A 50th level player with 50 CON would have 150 Health. A 50th level player with 250 CON would have 550 Health, a full 400 Health difference. Furthermore, the model should be the same for all Classes, or in my eyes a better description Races. An Avian or an Ursan with the same level and CON should both have exactly the same base Health. With this model in place a character could have between 102 and 1100 Health at the proposed level 100 cap, depending on whether they put 1, lowest possible, or 500, highest possible, attribute points into CON. To add a little variety to the model the Attribute modifier could be a random number between a pre-defined min and max value. For the example outlined above the 2 could be a random number between 1.8 and 2.2. Meaning each level a player would get a small variation in additional Health.
Skills need a massive overhaul in order to allow for greater customisation as well as further development of characters. With characters about to reach level 50 the current skill system is massively limiting, every character will be able to cap all their skills pretty much. This results in no variety at all for individual players.
To enhance skills, a skill tree type structure needs to be added to the game. Outlined below is a simplified system with a small number of high level skill groups and then specific skills below them. To further enhance skills the proposal is to change the way in which skills improve and are selected. Furthermore, it is proposed that skills are split into two main types; active and passive. Active skills work in exactly the same way as skills currently work in the game, they require Mana to use and are initiated manually by the player. Passive skills work independent of player interaction. The higher the level of a passive skill the better chance it will fire when required. Passive skills generally have a specific situation when they are enabled.
The proposal is that skills are grouped into six main groups. The six groups each have a base attribute that effects the maximum level the skill group can be increased to. Skill groups have ten levels. To increase a group level you need to spend skill points in the same was as any other skill. Group skills do not increase in level through use, unlike specific skills. Group levels require a minimum character level and base attribute level to be increased. This is listed in the table below.
The six suggested skill groups are:
This group contains skills specific to the defense of a character or group member. The skills in this group are usually the domain of Warriors and their sub classes. This skill group uses CON as its base attribute.
This group contains skills specific to attacking enemies and the usage of weapons. The skills in this group are usually the domain of Warriors and their sub classes. This skill group uses STR as its base attribute.
Ranger Skill Knowledge
This group contains skills specific to weapons masters and wilderness dwellers. The skills in this group are usually the domain of Archers and their sub classes. This skill group uses DEX as its base attribute.
Rogue Skill Knowledge
This group contains skills specific to the arts of thieving and assassination. The skills in this group are usually the domain of Rogues and their sub classes. This skill group uses AGI as its base attribute.
Elemental Spell Knowledge
This group contains skills specific to elemental magic. The skills in this group are usually the domain of Mages and their sub classes. This skill group uses INT as its base attribute.
Clerical Spell Knowledge
This group contains skills specific to healing and protection magic. The skills in this group are usually the domain of Clerics and their sub classes. This skill group uses WIS as its base attribute.
Advanced Attributes Model
To further enhance the synergy between skills and attributes, and to encourage more well rounded characters rather than the single attribute beasts we have now; listed below is an enhanced attribute model for Skill Groups. The basic premise behind this is that each Skill Group requires some level of a primary attribute and some of a secondary. The breakdown for each of the six groups is as follows:
Defensive Knowledge - STR: 30%, CON: 70%
Offensive Knowledge - STR: 70%, CON: 30%
Ranger Skill Knowledge - AGI: 40%, DEX: 60%
Rogue Skill Knowledge - AGI: 60%, DEX: 40%
Elemental Spell Knowledge - INT: 50%, WIS: 50%
Clerical Spell Knowledge - INT: 50%, WIS: 50%
From the above breakdown, to increase Defensive Knowledge to level 6, taking the required numbers from the table under Group Skills above, you would need the following:
(158 * 0.3)
(158 * 0.7)
Individual skills work in a very similar manner to how skills work now. These skills are ordered in power, much like the skills currently are. Skills need a specific Group Skill Level to be learnt. Individual Skills have two different levels. The first is the attainable level and the second is the actual level.
The Attainable skill level is increased through the spending of skill points, just like normal. The Attainable level can be increased from 1 to 10. The Actual level only increases through usage. The usage must be in a practical situation as well. Sitting in town casting heal repeatedly will make no change to that skill. The only way to improve your heal skill is to actually heal yourself or group members in PvE maps. The Actual skill level can be increased from 1 to 100, and can never be higher than 10 times the current attainable level. If you spend 5 points on heal, you can only get heal to 50 through usage. It can never improve past that level unless more skill points are spent on it to increase its attainable level.
Like most things in life you can only increase your Actual Skill level through failing in that skill. The idea of this that you can’t sit in a low level map spamming skills to improve them. If we take Dodge as an example, once you have it to 15% or so you will pretty much always succeed in your dodge against a level 5 characters when you are level 50. In order to actually keep improving and testing the skill you will need to face challenges more appropriate to your skill level.
The crux of these skill level increase changes is to make power leveling a thing of the past. Players can easily get to maximum level through sitting in maps and leaching xp off others. The down side is their skills will be useless and consequently they will be no use to groups at all.
Included below is a mock-up of how the skill page could look with these changes added. Next to each skill icon is a small bar. The filled portion of the bar is the current attainable level and the small line in it, the actual level. Clicking on a skill will show in more depth the current attainable and actual level.
Skills Screen (ver 1)
Skills Screen (ver 2)
Listed below are some suggested skills for the six main groups. These need to be discussed and ordered. They are by no means a complete list.
Defense Knowledge (P: CON - S: STR)
Passive: Dodge, Parry, Riposte, Shield Block, Mounted Combat
Active: Rescue, Taunt, Rage, Crushing Blow, Iron Blood, Hell Scream, Beckon
Offensive Knowledge (P: STR - S: CON)
Passive: Slashing Weapons, Bludgeoning Weapons, Piercing Weapons, Staffs and Wands, Archery, Blindfighting
Active: Hit All, Bash, Vengeful Slash, Stomp, Crippling Slash, Super Mega Slash
Ranger Skill Knowledge (P: DEX - S: AGI)
Passive: Dual Wield, Awareness, Double Attack
Active: Wilderness Sneak, Trap, Evade, Focus, Blast Shot, Avian Scream, Break Armour, Shattering Scream, Repulse Shot, Blinding Shot
Rouge Skill Knowledge (P: AGI - S: DEX)
Passive: Detect Trap, Evasion, Awareness, Blademaster, Fleet of Foot
Active: Sneak, Hide, Pick Lock, Disarm, Backstab, Piercing Strike, Poison Strike, Blinding Strike
Elemental Spell Knowledge (P: INT - S: WIS)
Passive: Quickchant, Spellcast Elemental, Spellcast Necromancy, Spellcast Generic
Elemental: Burning Hands, Fireshield, Fireball, Chill Touch, Coldshield, Cone of Cold. Energy Shield, Lightning Bolt, Chain Lightning, Frostbite, Firestorm, Ice Storm, Magic Sheld
Necromancy: Animate Skeleton, Animate Zombie, Animate Ghoul, Vampiric Touch, Destroy Undead, Wither, Feeblemind, Drain Life, Weakness, Nightmare
Generic: Detect Invisibility, Mass Invisibility, Ray of Enfeeblement, Haste, Stoneskin, Blur, Fly, Globe of Invulnerability, Dragonscales, Teleport
Clerical Spell Knowledge (P: WIS - S: INT)
Passive: Meditation, Spellcast Healing, Spellcast Protection, Spellcast Nature
Healing: Cure Wounds, Heal, Cure Blindness, Remove Poison, Summon, Vitality Resurrect, Restore
Protection: Armour, Bless, Elemental Protection, Water Breathing, Silence, Blessing of Vitality, Blessing of Might
Nature: Barkskin, Earthquake, Dust Devil, Sunray, Insect Plague, Cyclone, Hailstorm, Creeping Doom, Thorn Root, Thorn Wall
The dodge skill benefits those of the melee classes by allowing them to occasionally dodge attacks from opponents, with likelihood based on proficiency of knowledge.
This skill is very similar to the dodge skill, but the parry deflects the person's incoming attack rather than avoiding it.
A riposte is a fencing move made when you successfully parry your opponent's attack and manage to score a minor hit of your own in reply. The success of your riposte depends heavily on the success of your parry.
The shieldblock skill allows the user to attempt to block physical blows with a shield. The likelihood of success is based upon the user's skill proficiency. This skill does not overrule the dodge or parry skills - the user will still reflexively attempt to dodge attacks if a shieldblock is not possible. A successful shieldblock will mean no damage is received from the attack.
This skill will only work when you are wearing a shield.
With a proficiency in this skill, the player is able to fight while mounted (when the Devs bring pets and mounts in). Failing a skill check while in combat will automatically throw the player from their mount and put them on the ground, much like the effect of being bashed.
A proficiency at blindfighting will affect your success at fighting while blind or in the dark. A skilled blindfighter suffers little loss in fighting abilities under these circumstances.
To bash someone is to attempt to knock that person over. If you succeed, you will inflict minor damage and cause the victim to fall down. If you fail to bash successfully, you will lose your balance and fall. A person on the ground is unable to use skills for a period of time, be it the enemy or player.
To rescue someone is to attempt to take the place of that person and have the enemy hit you instead. The proficiency of your rescue skill will determine how successful you are able to draw the enemy to attack you instead and then for how long you can keep their attention.
This skill allows you to hit all enemies in close proximity to you simultaneously. Each enemy may be hit once and only once, regardless of proficiency in dual wield or double attack.
Dual wield allows you to wield two 1h slashing weapons at the same time, and to use both to hit your opponent during combat. This, in effect, gives you an extra attack per round. The success of the second attack depends on your proficiency in the area. See note below for more details.
A person with awareness is generally more in tune with his environment. Awareness helps protect somewhat from backstabbing, it also allows Rangers to auto-sneak in the woods, and gives a chance to see sneaking characters.
This skill is a pasive skill and occasionally gives you an extra attack for each combat round. The likelihood of the extra attack is dependent upon your proficiency in this area.
This allows you to move silently from one place to another while in forested areas. A person who sneaks successfully will be able to travel (for a period of time) without anyone taking notice of his or her arrival or departure.
Detect trap allows you to find any hidden traps in the area. The higher your proficiency the greater chance of finding and disarming said traps. Failing to detect a trap or the simple absence of traps nearby both have the same visual result.
This skill allows you to set a trap within your current location.When another creature walks into the room, it may trigger the trap and suffer a loss of hit points.
When successful, this skill allows the rogue to minimize damage taken from area spells and traps.
Blademaster allows you to wield two 1h piercing weapons at the same time, and to use both to stab your opponent during combat. This, in effect, gives you an extra attack per round. The success of the second attack depends on your proficiency in the area. See note below for more details.
Fleet of Foot
Fleet of Foot gives the player a considerable increase in both the ability to avoid physical and directed magical attacks. Magical attacks that are area or non directed can’t be avoided with this skill.
This allows you to move silently from one place to another. A person who sneaks successfully will be able to travel (for a period of time) without anyone taking notice of his or her arrival or departure.
Hide allows you to cleverly conceal yourself from the occupants in the surrounding area, regardless of whether they are enemies or other players. As with the sneak skill, there is always a chance that you will not hide successfully, and your failure to do so will not be obvious to you.
This skill is used to pick locks on doors and chests. Not all locks can be picked so this will not always result in successfully opening the lock. Some locks may also be trapped, so picking a trapped lock will result in setting the trap off.
Disarm provides a chance of knocking an opponent's weapon from its hands. If you successfully disarm your opponent's weapon, it will drop the weapon and fight in hand-to-hand combat. The enemy will automatically pick up the weapon after a period of time. For the period of time that they have dropped their weapon they do a lot less damage.
A backstab is an attempt to sneak up on the victim and place a weapon in the victim's back, at exactly the point where it will do the most damage. The amount of damage incurred is dependent on the proficiency of the backstabber.
Using surgeon like precision the player slips his blade past armour, sinking it deep into the victims flesh. A successful Piercing Strike attempt allows the player to avoid all armour modifiers of the enemy.
With the expert application of a potent neurotoxin to their weapon, on a successful skill attempt, the player poisons the enemy. For a period of time the enemy has reduced attributes across the board.
By aiming directly at the eyes of the enemy, the player attempts to blind his victim. Depending on the level of proficiency and skill attempt, the duration of blindness can be slight to permanent.
The better you are at quickly chanting, the faster you can cast a spell again. In essence it reduces the cool-down time of the spell.
Proficiency in this improves your ability to cast elemental spells (although you must be proficient in the spell as well). You need to have at least some level of skill in this area to have elemental spells available to you.
Proficiency in this improves your ability to cast necromancy spells (although you must be proficient in the spell as well). You need to have at least some level of skill in this area to have necromancer spells available to you.
Proficiency in this improves your ability to cast generic spells (although you must be proficient in the spell as well). You need to have at least some level of skill in this area to have generic spells available to you.
Proficiency in this improves your ability to cast protection spells (although you must be proficient in the spell as well). You need to have at least some level of skill in this area to have protection spells available to you.
Proficiency in this improves your ability to cast healing spells (although you must be proficient in the spell as well). You need to have at least some level of skill in this area to have healing spells available to you.
Proficiency in this improves your ability to cast nature spells (although you must be proficient in the spell as well). You need to have at least some level of skill in this area to have nature spells available to you.
Burning hands causes a wide arc of flame to shoot forth from the spell-caster's fingertips, burning the victim. This spell require close proximity to the enemy.
Fireshield provides protection from magical fire attacks and some protection against physical attacks, reflecting the damage back at the attacker.
Fireball is a very potent spell that causes a small ball of flame to shoot forth from the caster's fingertips. Upon contact with the victim, it explodes in a huge blast, burning the victim and surrounding enemies.
Upon a successful cast, this spell sends a searing, chilling cold through your victim, causing unmentionable pain and slight weakness.
Cone of Cold
Cone of cold causes a huge cone of icy cold air to issue forth, freezing the intended victim and causing mid damage.
Coldshield provides protection from magical cold attacks and some protection against physical attacks, reflecting the damage back at the attacker.
Energy Shield gives the victim limited protection from certain kinds of magical attacks for a period of time.
Animate skeleton allows the player to animate up to a certain number of skeletons (the precise number is dependent on the proficiency of the caster).
The skeletons will follow the player for a limited time or until their destruction.
Animate zombie allows the player to animate up to a certain number of zombies (the precise number is dependent on the proficiency of the caster).
The zombies will follow the player for a limited time or until their destruction.
Animate ghoul allows the player to animate up to a certain number of ghouls (the precise number is dependent on the proficiency of the caster).
The ghouls will follow the player for a limited time or until their destruction.
This spell temporarily turns your hands into magical lifeforce leeches. If in battle and unarmed, your hands will suck away your opponent's life force, granting some of it to you.
Upon hearing the incantation of the caster, the undead target is seriously damaged by the player's deity.
If successful, feeblemind will reduce all surrounding enemies intelligence and wisdom dramatically for a period of time. The direct result of this, is a much reduced spellcasting ability while effected.
Detect invisibility enables the player to see invisible items and players.
The caster attempts to cast invisibility on every player in his/her group. All players are turned invisible for a short period of time.
Ray of Enfeeblement
This spell causes an invisible ray of energy to burst forward from the caster's hands and sends it streaking towards the target. If struck by the ray, the victim is weakened significantly. His combat abilities are hence lessened.
Haste gives the victim up to an extra hit per round. It can be combined with dual wield, blademaster and/or double attack for added attack possibilities.
This spell changes the skin of the victim to a stone-like consistency and negates almost all damage from all forms of physical attack. It last until duration expires or a variable number of attacks (of any type, whether they hit or do damage) are made against the victim. The number of attacks it protects against varies with level and proficiency of caster.
This spell causes the victim's form to blur, making them difficult to target. The blur affect makes the victim substantially harder to hit, and increases their chance to avoid spells.
Fly will allow you to fly around wherever you want, regardless of terrain. Flying is not possible inside. This will be very useful when the Developers add some air zones, like Elemental Plain of Air, wink wink.
Globe of Invulnerability
This is a more powerful version of the spell Energy Shield that blocks all but the most powerful incantations.
This powerful spell is similar to Stone Skin, except it covers the victim's skin in hardened dragon scales. The scales can take considerably more abuse before wearing out, and have a longer base duration than stone.
This spell allows the caster to select a member of their party and teleport directly to them. Depending on the proficiency of the spell, they will be stunned for a short to very long period of time when they arrive at their new location.
Cure Wounds cures physical damage, although less than its more powerful counterpart Heal.
Heal restores a great deal of Health, and also cures other debufs currently on the player. It heals significantly more Health than Cure Wounds.
Cure blindness will cure a person magically blinded by the spells.
This spell will remove the poison from all members of the party.
This spell will summon all party member to the caster. Players must click an ok dialogue to be summoned. The spell will have no effect on players within viewing distance of the caster.
This spell expands the potential Health of all group members by a significant amount for a limited period of time, with the amount dependent on the proficiency of the caster. When the spell fades all players loose the same number of potential Health. If their current Health is less than the reduction the player dies when the spell fades.
Armor will magically improve your armor class for a time, the extent of the armour class improvement is related to the proficiency of the caster..
Casting bless on a victim will improve the victim's resistance to spells and increase hit %.
This spell gives all players in the group protection from gas, fire, cold, acid, and lightning based attacks. It doesn’t negate all damage, it just reduces it. The level of protection is based on the proficiency of the caster.
This spell causes all players in the group to sprout gills, allowing them to breathe underwater for a limited period of time. Those underwater when the spell wears off will quickly drown. This will be very useful when the Developers add some underwater zones, wink wink.
The target is silenced, preventing spellcasting for a short period of time.
This spell causes the target's skin to toughen and harden to the consistency of bark, granting a significant armor class improvement. The recipient is much more susceptible to fire based spells however.
Earthquake causes the ground to tremble and quake, possibly making all enemies in the surrounding fall to the ground and take damage. It causes the same effect as an individual bash.
This spell taps into the local weather to create a swirling vortex of air which strikes the caster's target. The spell only works in nature environments. It causes medium level damage.
A successful sunray causes blindness to all enemies in the surrounding area. It also does a lot of damage to undead as well.
This caster summons a massive horde of insects to attack all enemies in the surrounding area. The spell can only be cast in natural surroundings.
When cast, cyclone will cause all enemies in close proximity instantaneous damage as vicious winds summon from the ether to tear at their bodies. If the spell is cast indoors its effect will be reduced.
This spell taps into the local weather to create a small storm of hail. All of the caster's enemies in the surrounding area are pelted with the hail. In addition, each victim may become sluggish from the relentless frigid assault.
Creeping doom is the a much more powerful version of the Insect Plague spell. Creeping doom allows the caster to call forth a carpet of crawling, biting, and stinging insects that envelop all in the surrounding area and inflict medium damage for a reasonable period of time..
For both Dual Wield and Blademaster it is suggested that new weapon types are added that are in essence twin weapons. Two scimitars, dual daggers etc. Instead of allowing a player to dual wield any two weapons make them only able to use the twin weapon sets that are put into the game.
Classes or Races
With the proposed changes to both Attributes and Skills we can now start looking at the three classes in the game as Races rather than specific character classes. With the added flexibility of six attributes and 6 skill groups players are free to make a whole swath of different classes no matter what Race they choose. The only real suggestion on Races is to add a female or male version of each of the three currently in place. Some examples of standard Classes are listed below:
40% STR | 30% CON | 20% AGI | 10% DEX
50% Defensive Knowledge, 50% Offensive Knowledge
30% STR | 20% CON | 20% WIS | 20% AGI | 10% DEX
40% Defensive Knowledge, 35% Offensive Knowledge, 25% Clerical Spell Knowledge (Healing Specialist)
15% STR | 15% CON | 15% INT | 25% AGI | 30% DEX
40% Ranger Skill Knowledge, 15% Defensive Knowledge, 25% Offensive Knowledge, 20% Clerical Spell Knowledge (Nature Specialist)
10% STR | 5% CON | 10% INT | 40% AGI | 35% DEX
100% Rogue Skill Knowledge
6% STR | 10% CON | 37% INT | 37% WIS | 5% AGI | 5% DEX
100% Elemental Spell Knowledge
10% STR | 6% CON | 37% INT | 37% WIS | 5% AGI | 5% DEX
100% Clerical Spell Knowledge (Healing & Protection Specialist)
6% STR | 10% CON | 37% INT | 37% WIS | 5% AGI | 5% DEX
100% Clerical Spell Knowledge (Healing & Nature Specialist)
Automatic Class Builds
As it has been rightly pointed out, this game has a broad cross-section of age groups and RPG experience levels. To assist the less experienced users, the concept of an automatic build could be added. With this is place, players could selected a pre-defined class build and have skill points and attributes automatically assigned based on in-built rules. If they, for instance, chose to be a Warrior, each time they leveled a dialogue would be displayed asking if the player wanted to have attributes and skill points automatically assigned. If they selected yes their 5 attribute points would be assigned based on the rules, of 40% STR | 30% CON | 20% AGI | 10% DEX. Over two levels they would add the following to their attributes:
STR: 4 | CON: 3 | AG: 2 | DEX: 1
Skills would be automatically increased based on similar rules.
When a player created a character they could selected a pre-defined build, or select manual. Selecting manual they would have full rain, with no suggestions, on assigning attributes and skill points each level.
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