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Old 08-28-2020, 01:13 PM   #1
V1r14
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Default An In-depth view on Classes, and why the Warlock isn't as Overpowered as in the Past

An In-depth view on Classes, and why the Warlock isn't as Overpowered as in the Past

Hi, my Ingame Moniker is Lightning Sophia,
and I've been playing a Spellcasting RvR Warlock since Okt 2009, but I have been an observer long before that time. Other than my Main Lock, I've been playing 3 other Warlocks on Valhalla, as well as other Classes from time to time. Since I've been majorly focussed on Warlocks, and tried many different Roles in my long playtime, I presume to know more about them than most, which is why I came up with this small Essay, to give some in-sight and a little History on why a Warlock was once a ridicously overpowered nightmare, why he had a Phase in which he suffered, and why most Warlocks who try to try out Staff Mastery utterly fail, and what other successful SM mages seperates them. This Essay merely tries to point out how Mages are special in Design, and is not in anyway a form of complaint. It contains some biased suggestions, and is therefore in no way entirely objective.
This is very long read. So grab a Cup of Coffee and your Shortcake and take your time.

First of, we have to point out the differences between Spellcasters, like Warlocks and Conjurers and the other 4 classes:



The Mentality

(NMC) Normal-hitting-Characters (Barbarian, Knight, Hunter, Marksman)

Combat on your " normal-hitting"-characters part can be bottled down to three components:
- a cycle in which they attack
- a cycle in which they cast a spell
- a cycle in which they move or reposition themselves, be it either for a better attack position or a more defensiv one.
During Combat these everyone of these classes tend to alternate between these 3 cycles
-> like for Example on a Hunter :"Normhit, Ensnaring Arrow, Normhit, Shield Piercing"
-> or a common Example on a Barbarian vs barbarian : "Normhit, Moving slightly out of range of the enemy, Normhit"

Everything about Combat involves a DPS Check, where you have to outlast your Enemy. "Kill him, before he kills me" so to speak.

Now a NMC developes a Mentality, in which they prioritize in Hitting with Normals, and Supplementary Spells are only used to assist them in their Enemy encounter:
Defensive Buffs: reduces the enemies overall DPS compared to your own
Debuffs: increases your overall DPS compared to the enemies
Crowd Controll: Stops the enemies DPS shortly, our aims to prevent him from doing the same.

And Movement is also very crucial: Bad footwork could mean that you are not facing your enemy properly and missing an attack cycle, or the enemies has maneuvered you out of hitting range, or he is making you suffer in a Tree-Duell.

Therefore maximizing efficiency consists of using the downtime between two attack cycles, to either reposition or starting to cast.
Even Without realizing it, everyone is prioritizing the attack cycle, and the other cycles are only there to assist that.

Spellcasters on the other hand think differently.



(SCC) Spellcasting-Characters (Warlocks, Conjurers)

Since they lack in normalhit-Damage, Combat on your SCC consists only of two parts:

- a cycle in which they cast a spell
- a cycle in which they move or reposition themselves, be it either for a better attack position or a more defensiv one.

In order to Deal Damage, everything involves around casting Spells (who would have thought^^).
Whereas Normalhitters sometimes use the short gap between two Normhits for Supplementary Spells, Casters don't or rather can't.
Between two Spells there is always a small Global Cooldown, which prevents the Caster in Casting another Spell subsequently. It is a timeframe so small that even an attack with a minor normalhit is not possible without disturbing the cast cycle.
Spells are always carefully considered, they have to have meaning behind them.
In order to use Global Cooldown efficiently, the Caster will try to move, and reposition himself better for Combat. It’s his defining Combat trait.
Movement is a very important cycle. The Warlock class lacks in defensive buffs, which is why he will try to make up for it by moving a lot. He will hide from you, he will prevent you from facing him, he will react to your own little movements and move accordingly. That’s why a Duell between two Warlocks is rather exciting. It’s a beautiful Dance and a work of Art.
A bad Warlock will prioritize only in the Spell casting cycle, and a good Warlock will alternate between both cycles. Their Footwork distinguishes them. It shouldn’t be full of unnecessary openings and it shouldn’t be a waste of time.
Therefore the Footwork should not aim to be flashy or jittery, it should just be efficient.


The Past and Present
Back when Regnum was still young in 2007, attack Speed was much lower, and Armor was so insignificant (and in some cases even bugged) then what it is now. Good gear was uncommon, and because of it, Warlocks had a DPS advantage back then. In order to cope with better gear, and make combat more fast-paced, the Armor-System got overhauled and buffed four times during Regnums long Existence. To cope with the reduced Damage, all Classes got faster attack cycles.
Spellcasters couldn't benefit from the now faster attack-cycles. Staffmastery Mages were already the fastest attackers and could also not benefit from the faster attacks. In net terms, only a DPS- and damage-reduction was the consequence for all Mages.

Staffmastery (SM)
Now, with Staff mastery, a mage gets an additional attack cycle, which can be tricky to cope well with. He is now confronted with adding this attack cycle into his own playstyle, which doesn’t add too well into the overall nature of Casters.
He lacks in Firepower compared to Marksmen, but he makes up for it in attack speed.
Even without AS gear, his attack speed is pretty fast. And equipment of many mages always aims to increase their own attack speed before everything else.

This is also the very core of the problem.

He is so fast, that he can easily spiral into the NMC-Mentality. He will try to stand still as often as possible, to maximize his own DPS. Since his Damage output is lower than that of a Marksman, he has to stand still for a longer period of time to achieve the same DPS. The SM Mage may have a very strong DPS, but it only functions at all, when he is unhindered. He also has to keep in mind that others can temporarily achieve a higher DPS than him.

Whereas casting supplementary Spells can be done between 2 attack cycles on other classes, the SM-Mage would have to sacrifice several attack cycles for a single Spell. Therefore he foolishly chooses to cast as little as needed, and as a result allows his enemy to raise their own DPS at will. The Mage neglegts his own movements, as this could also hinder his own DPS.
(Warjurers coupe a bit better, since they have additional defensive abilities, and don’t rely solely on Footwork)

To sum up his flaw:
- he loses his initiative in a Fight
- he neglegts his greatest defense: His Movement
- and he allows his enemy to raise their DPS to greater values than his own


Therefore the only logical outcome is for him to stay out of the NMC-Mentaliy.

For him to not to spiral into confusion, one point of personal improvement would be his Equipment, were he should always aim to increase his own Damage in the first place, rather than his own attack speed. Less attack speed and more Damage means that he has to stay still less often. He will play less static and more fluidly in combat as a result.

Another Point of improvement: Your Skillset!
You are not building your Skillset around SM, SM has to be build around your Skillset. There is no point in being fast, if you can’t make it harmony with your Crowd Controls. Tone done your AS slightly to match your CC.

If the SM Mage manages to stay out of the NMC-Mentality he will cope well and find success.

And the Success is definately worth the effort. SM Mages have benefits in RvR other than keeping Enemies at bay, or putting pressure on a single Enemy. They get a better overview on the battlefield than Spellscasters, since their mind isn’t on the “right Spell for the right time”, and as a consequence, they seldom suffer from tunnel vision. Their mana is also conserved more, which means he has enough reserves to always adapt on the battlefield.
He can stop the rush before it happens or initiate a rush any time. He is, if he neglets his buffs that is, always prepared.
__________________
Warlock Lv60, Warlock Lv60, Warlock Lv56, Conjurer Lv60, Hunter Lv55, Knight Lv 57, Barbarian Lv60, Marksman Lv60 Warlock Lv60, Hunter Lv55
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Old 09-04-2020, 10:58 AM   #2
krabluna
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i like this very informative and thought-provoking. Thanks !
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