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PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2011 11:26 pm 
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Spiderkin

Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 7:02 am
Posts: 503
I've heard a lot of people say that they find summoners boring to play. I wonder if there's a way to fix that.

Some thoughts:

More ranged attacks that can pass through your summons. Perhaps even give them a locked nature-based ranged combat tree that includes a passive that grants that to slings and bows. Maybe grant more attack inscriptions the ability to ignore allies -- especially poison ones, since they're an infusion and naturally fit with the class.

Similarly, more support abilities so you can do more than just summon and then sit back doing nothing.

More ways to control your summons. Perhaps replace rage with a debuff that makes all your summons focus on one enemy, with increased attack and damage?

Maybe make some summons a bit more interesting as they go up in level... grant them new abilities and such that adds to the decision of what to summon.

Honestly, increasing the duration on most summons might also be a good idea -- it would leave the summoner free to do more than just summon repeatedly. Part of the problem, I think, is that it often feels like you're making few real decisions in combat -- you decide what to summon, but even then, cooldowns mean that you're usually just summoning whatever's available and whatever you've put lots of points into. If summons lasted a bit longer, this might be different. Possibly make summons tougher and longer-duration, but with a higher cooldown or cost, so keeping them alive actually matters -- though I could see that becoming annoying. Hrm.

Maybe an expensive sustain (or one that raises the costs of your summons rather than being expensive) that causes an effect when you summon something, centered or targeted on that summon, with different effects for each one? Some could be blasts (a blast of pinning webs when you summon the spider, the slime healing every nearby ally, the turtle giving nearby allies a defensive buff), some could be beams or cones from your summon in that direction (eg. a blast of random elements when summoning the hydra), etc. All of them would never harm friendlies, since otherwise they'd be more annoying than anything else.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 29, 2012 3:42 pm 
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Cornac

Joined: Sun Aug 29, 2010 1:31 am
Posts: 40
Another option here is to lower the requirements on the talent that lets you take control of your summons. I feel like this talent is more fun than overpowered anyways.


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PostPosted: Wed May 08, 2013 11:47 am 
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Cornac

Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2012 8:07 pm
Posts: 43
I think the fact that the summons have a timed life makes it more powerful and does not makes much sense.

Maybe the summons should not have a timed life, but a negative regeneration rate. It will nerf grand arrival by the mere fact that you cannot summon so often. You will also actually consider using Rage to beef up summon.

The drake for instance has a lifetime of 10 turns but all of its abilities have a cooldown of more than 10. This means that by summoning a new drake, you not only get a new fully powered summon, also its abilities got reset. When your cunning is still low, you actually wish you had another detonate to kill a summon so you can summon new ones.

Maybe Rage should actually be cumalitive (so you can rage the same creature multiple times up to a maximum), this will mean that you want a certain summon to survive rather than die so there's a new one with available talents.


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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 3:36 pm 
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Halfling

Joined: Tue Apr 30, 2013 6:19 am
Posts: 84
Make summon direct controlling a centerpeice of the class. I think the biggist problem i have with direct control of summons is my maincharacter starts doing stupidly dangerous things like replacing my minotaur in melee. My suggestion is to change the direct control talent as follows:

1) Your mqin character automatically meditates regaining equilibrium ect, but he cannot act or move. This doesnt put meditate on cooldown. Maybe gets some defensive buff and also you can still see with his vision so you know if he's getting attacked. Or some other clear way to monitor your summoner if he's around the corner.

2) Limit range to avoid 100% safe exploring. If your controlee moves more than 5 spaces from the summoner then the summoner follows.

3) make direct control worth it. Slightly lower summons damage accross the board, but give direct controlled summons a nice damage boost. Longer duration and cooldowns on summons would make stratigic positioning more interesting, and if you can control a summon on point than there shouldn't be so much annoying micromanaging.

On a side note rage is really boring and seems weak. However aggroing all your monsters on a single foe is already a free option under give orders. I think a nice buff for rage would be that it cools down one of the summons abilities. Rank 5 rage cools down 2. Although double ferocious roar is a scary thought, but thats more about ferocious roar being too good.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 08, 2013 5:18 pm 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Thu Nov 18, 2010 6:42 pm
Posts: 744
This topic should probably not be in the T-engine 4 ideas forum which is not module specific. Instead it should be in the ToME 4 ideas forum where it would get a wider audience.
Aquillion wrote:
I've heard a lot of people say that they find summoners boring to play. I wonder if there's a way to fix that.

Some thoughts:

More ranged attacks that can pass through your summons. Perhaps even give them a locked nature-based ranged combat tree that includes a passive that grants that to slings and bows. Maybe grant more attack inscriptions the ability to ignore allies -- especially poison ones, since they're an infusion and naturally fit with the class.
This is a decent idea, either a ranged debuffing attack or a relatively weak ranged attack (a bit like the alchemists channel staff, perhaps) to provide an option besides summoning every turn. Bear in mind that summoners are one of the easiest classes right now and don't need an overall buff, which would probably make them more boring.
Aquillion wrote:
Honestly, increasing the duration on most summons might also be a good idea -- ...
The resilience talent accomplishes this quite well.

Aquillion wrote:
Maybe an expensive sustain (or one that raises the costs of your summons rather than being expensive) that causes an effect when you summon something, centered or targeted on that summon, with different effects for each one? Some could be blasts (a blast of pinning webs when you summon the spider, the slime healing every nearby ally, the turtle giving nearby allies a defensive buff), some could be beams or cones from your summon in that direction (eg. a blast of random elements when summoning the hydra), etc. All of them would never harm friendlies, since otherwise they'd be more annoying than anything else.
You seem to be describing the Grand Arrival talent here. Do you think it needs to be enhanced?

BoomFrog wrote:
1) Your mqin character automatically meditates regaining equilibrium ect, but he cannot act or move. This doesnt put meditate on cooldown. Maybe gets some defensive buff and also you can still see with his vision so you know if he's getting attacked. Or some other clear way to monitor your summoner if he's around the corner.

2) Limit range to avoid 100% safe exploring. If your controlee moves more than 5 spaces from the summoner then the summoner follows.
You can control both of these things by specifying talent priorities for your main character while controlling one of your summons - right click and select give order (or hit ctrl-F1) and change the leash distance and leash anchor as needed (maybe this could be changed to default to the controlled character) and select the tactical talents usage option to specify what talents you want your main character to use when you're not controlling it.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 24, 2013 6:16 am 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Sat Aug 24, 2013 5:55 am
Posts: 690
I'm actually fairly fond of the summoner as a character... however, the dullness factor (at least to me) does not demand having "more" things to do other than summon but rather, have more strategy in how you choose to summon.

Late in the game it's basically spamming Drakes and then waiting to spam some more.

I'd like to see the Golem (seriously, why isn't the golem a heavy-hitter? It's a golem!) and the underrated Rimebark have some greater utility...

I loathe the summon control. Why would I wan to control my summons? That's far too much micro-managing. Rather, I'd like to have real-time synergies: have the summons work synergistically with one another, giving benefits not just in general as it currently is, but based on what other summons are in play.

I think the Golem should gain cold-immunity if Rimebark is in play and that Rimebark should increase it's duration.

I think that if the turtle and golem are both in play, then any healing of the summoner should heal a percentage to all of the summons in play.

I'd like to see the Warhounds give the Minotaur a rage bonus if they're both in play.

That would encourage the user to toy with their mixture of summons rather than just spamming their strongest over and over again. It could give a really cool tactical and strategic opportunity, especially if you can summon six or seven or more. You could even have second tier bonuses for having a particular combo of three... I think Rimebark, Golem, and Jelly, should add DoT poison or something like that.

What's more, you could balance it by having negative synergies as well... such as the Drakes and Rimebark weakening each other if they're in play together but having it go back to normal if you add the spitter.

I don't know... those are my thoughts.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 15, 2013 1:53 am 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2013 12:14 am
Posts: 762
Synergistic summons seems like it would add a good amount of tactical depth. Perhaps replacing the Summoner Controlling talent?


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 27, 2013 5:51 am 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:03 pm
Posts: 717
Frankly, the drake needs a nerf. Ever since Bellowing Roar got buffed, it's been a complete no-brainer.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 27, 2013 11:11 am 
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Wayist

Joined: Wed Aug 21, 2013 9:04 pm
Posts: 16
I feel the problem is that right now, if you summon a minion you don't have to do anything else other than let it do it's thing.

i don't think taking direct control of summons is any good either. There's no real point if you try controlling the one minion you summon, especially at the expense of the player's real character.

There just needs to be more synergy between the summoner and his minions (and as described earlier, between minions). Grand Arrival is great for when you just summon fresh minions and sometimes give good synergy between minions (such as turtle's heal), but there needs to be more for summons already in place.

Maybe a way to sacrifice/merge an existing summon to boost the powers of a different summon, and the power given depends on the sacrificed/merged monsters (i.e sacrifice/merge a spider summon into a drake to make a poison breath drake or something). Although grand arrival sorta accomplishes that with buffs. We could maybe have talents to command or directly buff summons as well, such as reducing cooldowns on talents for summons or curing them of status ailments, or maybe upgrade them into stronger variants.

Speaking of variants, I also feel like the summons themselves could be more interesting/unique. At least more variety. Some are already rarely used, but being limited to common fixed monsters like a flame ritch or a flame drake, or a normal poison spider is kind of boring. So perhaps give the summoner ways to summon different variations of his default summons, like a different element drake other than fire OR just the bigger version dragons (MULTI-HUED PLEASE?) or like the cool temporal spiders instead of the default poison one eventually.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2014 11:58 pm 
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Spiderkin

Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 7:02 am
Posts: 503
Hachem_Muche wrote:
Aquillion wrote:
Honestly, increasing the duration on most summons might also be a good idea -- ...
The resilience talent accomplishes this quite well.
No, what I mean is fundamentally change the way summons work (longer cooldowns but with much longer duration and higher HP -- not a few turns, I mean like lasting ten times as long.) The problem is that right now, the summoner is forced to spend almost all their actions summoning; and because of the way cooldowns work, that mostly amounts to 'hit the summon key for whatever just left cooldown', with no real choices involved. This makes the class boring because you have little direct control over combat.

Making summons last drastically longer by default (balancing it in some other way, of course, like with longer cooldowns) would free the summoner's actions up to spend them on other things and would make the decision of what to summon when a bit more meaningful.

Quote:
Aquillion wrote:
Maybe an expensive sustain (or one that raises the costs of your summons rather than being expensive) that causes an effect when you summon something, centered or targeted on that summon, with different effects for each one? Some could be blasts (a blast of pinning webs when you summon the spider, the slime healing every nearby ally, the turtle giving nearby allies a defensive buff), some could be beams or cones from your summon in that direction (eg. a blast of random elements when summoning the hydra), etc. All of them would never harm friendlies, since otherwise they'd be more annoying than anything else.
You seem to be describing the Grand Arrival talent here. Do you think it needs to be enhanced?
Check the date on my post! It's from before that was implemented.

Quote:
BoomFrog wrote:
1) Your mqin character automatically meditates regaining equilibrium ect, but he cannot act or move. This doesnt put meditate on cooldown. Maybe gets some defensive buff and also you can still see with his vision so you know if he's getting attacked. Or some other clear way to monitor your summoner if he's around the corner.

2) Limit range to avoid 100% safe exploring. If your controlee moves more than 5 spaces from the summoner then the summoner follows.
You can control both of these things by specifying talent priorities for your main character while controlling one of your summons - right click and select give order (or hit ctrl-F1) and change the leash distance and leash anchor as needed (maybe this could be changed to default to the controlled character) and select the tactical talents usage option to specify what talents you want your main character to use when you're not controlling it.
Another option might be to remove the summoner from the field entirely while they're "possessing" a summon, although that could be tricky to balance. My feeling is that leaving your body behind and vulnerable is never going to really be a top-tier combat tactic.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:29 am 
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Wyrmic

Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:01 am
Posts: 282
Aquillion wrote:
leaving your body behind and vulnerable is never going to really be a top-tier combat tactic.

Are you going to give up entirely on a cool mechanic, just like that? You need to learn how to dream, Aquillion. You need to learn how to believe!

If the designer wants the Summon Control ability to be a defining, top-tier talent for the Summoner, then it can be all that and more. But it needs to work in a drastically different way.

Here's my utterly madcap take on the scenario:

Quote:
When controlling a summon, the summoner gains access to an array of different abilities, Summon Control now becoming available in its own dedicated talent tree.

Gaining levels in the Summon Control tree teaches the player additional talents while in summoned form. The acquired talents would depend on the summon in question but be broadly consistent.

It also boosts the player's Eidolon:

While controlling a summon, the player character is replaced by an Eidolon from another plane.

The Summon Control tree would grant a lot of options to customize the player's Eidolon. The player could choose between a mindfire-slinging ranged caster sort of Eidolon, or a close-quarters, grappling, stunning, disabling melee combatant. Perhaps there could be multiple separate Eidolons, each channeled by a sustain that grants the player extra combat bonuses in regular form.

Some of the talents for controlled summons would affect both the summon and the summoner's Eidolon, e.g. a talent that attacks the foe as the Eidolon summons a blast of psychic energy at it, or an ability that removes negative status effects from the controlled summon in exchange for the Eidolon losing some life. The summoner might have the ability to teleport the Eidolon on a cooldown and have limited control over it the way a summoner does its summons.

The Eidolon being attacked is bad, but not as bad as the player being attacked directly in the current Summon Control state. I don't know how the Eidolon being damaged would affect the player - perhaps some of the damage would be shared, perhaps the Eidolon would simply go on cooldown for an extended amount of time after its destruction, or its cooldown would be lengthened depending on the life lost. Perhaps it would remain, inactive, until healed beyond a certain point. The interactions could be quite fun and complicated.


Now, that would be a cool bit of pizazz for the Summoner as-is, but it would also quite nicely characterize an entirely new character class of its own. Do as you will with it ;)


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2014 1:10 am 
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Perspiring Physicist

Joined: Sun Sep 09, 2012 7:43 am
Posts: 5629
Not sure replacing your body with a creature from another plane really works with the theme of the class.

How about have the mind of the summoned creature you are displacing being relocated to your body.
Then since you are adding extra abilities to the summoned creature, the summoned creature adds extra abilities to your body while it is inhabiting it.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:43 pm 
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Wyrmic

Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:01 am
Posts: 282
HousePet wrote:
Not sure replacing your body with a creature from another plane really works with the theme of the class.

You know, I have the devastating feeling people take my lunatic ideas as serious suggestions, sometimes...

Well, it doesn't have to be an Eidolon from another plane. Your "Primal Form" takes over you, perhaps? And you could attune it to different elements / animals / plants / even attune to a type of summon?

HousePet wrote:
How about have the mind of the summoned creature you are displacing being relocated to your body.
Then since you are adding extra abilities to the summoned creature, the summoned creature adds extra abilities to your body while it is inhabiting it.

That's a cool development of the idea :3. I love the flavour of that - just the mindswitch part - for a psionic talent, though, as it's powerful, big in scope, and so juicily mind-based. Reminds of the best of the original D&D psionic powers - they always gave off the feeling of being immensely powerful, but you were never quite sure how you should use them. Even if the Possessor comes along it's probably gonna feel pretty distinct. Anyway, shout if you can develop the mind-swap idea to remove the risks Aquillion spoke of when leaving your body under the incautious command of the AI...

Well, that's the rest of my contribution. Gotta detach myself from the discussion before I become too emotionally invested :P.

Maybe it's time for someone passionate about the matter to come along and make an Improved Summon Control?


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:56 pm 
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Wyrmic

Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:01 am
Posts: 282
And please move this to the ToME 4 forum! Gah!


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