ToME: the Tales of Maj'Eyal
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Minions Tweak
http://forums.te4.org/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=43024
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Author:  Pigslayer [ Sat Dec 06, 2014 12:05 am ]
Post subject:  Minions Tweak

Attempts to make minion necromancer builds a bit more fun, while keeping it relatively balanced.

Necrotic Minions

Necrotic Aura - increased decay rate by 5%.
Aura Mastery - max radius is increased to 10.
Dark Empathy - is now tier 3.
Surge of Undeath - is now tier 4; has better scaling.

Necrosis

Lichform - increases necrotic minions mastery by 0.1 at talent lv 3 and 0.2 at lv 5.

Shades

Shadow Tunnel - evasion duration increases with talent points.
Curse of the Meek - minor cosmetic change (less likely to summon bunnies).

Advanced Necrotic Minions

Undead Explosion - damage type depends on the minion used. Credit goes to HousePet.

Minion Mastery - Vampire minions have the same talents as enemy vampires. Wights have talent masteries like enemy wights. Barrow wights are replaced with emperor wights. And dreads are replaced with dreadmasters.

Animus

Is now a generic tree.

http://te4.org/games/addons/tome/minions-tweak

Author:  Red [ Sat Dec 06, 2014 3:39 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Minions Tweak

I won't say anything about the fun of this, because I don't really Necromancer. That being said, with one exception (DE and SoU swap) those are all buffs.

Improvement it may well be, but balanced as compared to current Minionmancers I'm not so sure.

Author:  Pigslayer [ Sat Dec 06, 2014 6:13 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Minions Tweak

Red wrote:
I won't say anything about the fun of this, because I don't really Necromancer. That being said, with one exception (DE and SoU swap) those are all buffs.


Pretty much any improvement would be considered a buff. What matters is that the changes don't significantly disrupt the balance of the class. If any of the changes I made turned the class from "reasonably powerful" to "boringly OP", then I would nerf or remove whatever caused it.

Red wrote:
Improvement it may well be, but balanced as compared to current Minionmancers I'm not so sure.


I don't consider myself an expert at the class, since I only won it twice. Minion necromancers are strong (on normal), but they have flaws.

Quote:
- Vampire minions have the same talents as enemy vampires.
- Wights have talent masteries like enemy wights.
- Barrow wights are replaced with emperor wights.
- Dreads are replaced with dreadmasters.


Most of the changes are targeted at Advanced Necrotic Minions.

Advanced minions, except liches, are inferior to skeletons. Skeletons have weapons, talent masteries, and racials (bone shield, reassemble, etc.). Advanced minions are suppose to make up for it by being casters, but they have mediocre spells (e.g., vampire minions have only one spell: rotting disease). In general, they deal less damage, they're squishier, and they have less talents.

"Advanced" minions require a category point and 8 talent points at minimum. A heavy investment for a downgrade. Neither of my winners unlocked ANM. The only reason I would bother is for the sacrifice shield.

Dreads are pretty weak, despite being one of the rarer minions. Their only spells are blurred sight and burning hex. Dreadmasters have a much better spell list. Barrow wights have the same talents as grave wights, so I upgraded to emperor wights who have thunderstorm. The alternative to replacing them would be giving them custom spell lists, which I'd rather not do.

Quote:
- Swapped Dark Empathy with Surge of Undeath.
- Surge of Undeath has better scaling.


Dark Empathy was made accessible earlier, since shuffling between mages to avoid friendly fire is annoying. Surge of Undeath has poor scaling, especially on higher difficulties. Nobody maxes this talent, since it's not worth it.

Minions, unlike wild summons, don't inherit much from you. They only inherit your damage mod, and resistances and saves if you invested in Dark Empathy. That's not very helpful against against enemies with high defenses (like a unique with 80+ def or 60% resist all). Minions end up becoming distractions towards the end of the game on nightmare.

Quote:
- Lichform increases necrotic minions mastery.
- Minor cosmetic change to Curse of the Meek (less likely to summon bunnies).
- Shadow Tunnel's evasion duration increases with talent points.


Lichform is not very appealing to minion necromancers. You lose out on infusions and gain a tree that damages your minions. The raised resist cap is good, but it's harder to reach the cap as an undead. Increasing necrotic minions mastery provides you with an extra minion, which is a good bonus for minion builds.

Then again, I don't like lichform much. I'd rather have heroism/wild/movement infusions than the rune equivalents. Shadow Tunnel is a one point wonder, so the change gives people an incentive to max it out.

Edit: more detailed response

Edit: released update

- Reduced Surge of Undeath's crit rate.
- Undead Explosion's damage type depends on the minion used. Credit goes to HousePet.

Author:  dayna297 [ Sun Dec 07, 2014 9:51 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Minions Tweak

Have you considered just removing ghouls/ghoul kings from the pool entirely with enough mastery in advanced or what not?

Author:  Pigslayer [ Sat Dec 13, 2014 2:19 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Minions Tweak

Ghouls are decent minions. Retch alone makes them more useful than vampire minions. Vampire lords and elder vampires are the only somewhat threatening npc vampires (not counting the Master and a unique whose name I can't remember). A vampire lord would make a nice pet with its impending doom..

I did consider replacing ghoulking with a mummy for variety, but mummies are probably considered an advanced undead.

Edit: released update

- Animus is now a generic tree: viewtopic.php?f=39&t=43052
- Aura Mastery increases max radius to 10: makes auto-exploring with minions less annoying.
- Increased Necrotic Aura's decay rate by 5%.
- Increased cost and cooldown of Shadow Tunnel by 5, reduced the evasion chance.

Author:  Bahndriin [ Mon May 11, 2015 5:56 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Minions Tweak

Hooray! Thank you for doing this.

I would like to add that another non balance-breaking ability that in my opinion would fit here is probably making Shadow Tunnel targetable, allowing to you help minions to either reach you, on gang up on someone. Allowing Dark Empathy to reduce interminion damage also seems semi-plausible.

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