classes

Wisdom of Nym: The jobs in the middle of the road in Final Fantasy XIV

The first time, it was all about the jobs everyone thinks are garbage now. The second time, it was all about the jobs everyone thinks are great now. And this time… well, it’s about the Final Fantasy XIV jobs no one seems to think about much at all. Or they’re in the middle of simultaneously called spectacular and awful so that it all averages out into the middle. In other words, these are the jobs that tend to escape the notice of players.

That makes these jobs a little harder to talk about, because they’re not in the midst of any sort of perception shift. In at least one case, we have jobs that have basically just maintained their position in the game’s overall makeup across expansions, yet they haven’t seemed to change enough for people to really notice what they’re doing now. Are they good? Bad? Neutral? What’s going on with these jobs? Let’s talk about it.

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Skyforge celebrates the summer through August and looks back at Outlaw design

Just because you’re a deity doesn’t mean you don’t want to spend some time enjoying the summer. Skyforge knows what you like, and it’s ready to bring you through the waning moments of the summer with its Summer Breeze Event running through August 23rd. Pick up swimsuits and active wear for your character, take part in some pegasus races (bad language in that video, fair warning), and generally kick back and enjoy yourself with the later parts of the summer season.

The game also posted a retrospective detailing the creation process for the game’s Outlaw class, walking through the path of designing the look, the abilities, and the mechanics behind adding another play option. All of the above have to work together, of course, to ensure that the new class feels distinct from the other options while also being fun to play and working on its own merits. And the concept art includes lots of cool long coats, so that’s another reason to take a look back behind the scenes.

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Wisdom of Nym: The losers we see in Final Fantasy XIV’s jobs

The biggest problem with jobs in Final Fantasy XIV isn’t always mechanics. Sometimes it’s a matter of perception. With 15 jobs to play in combat roles, some of them are bound to be seen as worse than others… and it’s really easy to see some of them as worse when they’ve actually been brought closer to the middle rather than being horribly undertuned.

I cautioned extensively against people making balance predictions based on early preview mechanics before, and in the case of the jobs most frequently cried about as being dead, that turned out to be right on the money. (Surprise, White Mage isn’t on this list!) Now that we’ve actually been playing the expansion for over a month and have Savage information to look at, we can make a more comprehensive picture of which jobs are seen by the community as being good, which ones are bad, and which ones… just sort of are still there.

But let’s start with the losers. Because that makes a fun headline. Who’s on the downward path, and are they actually bad/worse, or just not as good as before?

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Global Adventures fills its Kickstarter piggy bank, eyes September release

A spot of good news for those who wouldn’t mind taking a world-spanning vacation this fall: Global Adventures well exceeded its minuscule $170 Kickstarter goal in July, taking in a little under $1,500 from fans.

The game, which bills itself as “Diablo meets Borderlands,” is looking at some kind of release on Steam in September. It’s an action MMO that sends players all across the globe looking for treasure, fighting ninjas, and taking on increasingly ludicrous bosses.

“In Global Adventures, your life gets turned upside down after you join the adventurous Treasure Hunters’ Association (THA) and head out to explore the Mayan ruins,” the team said. “But what starts as a treasure hunt quickly turns into something more, as your expeditions reveal bits and pieces of information that could unravel the mysteries of history.”

Take a look at some of the classes after the break!

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Check out the character creation options for Black Desert’s upcoming Mystic class

As it has always gone with Black Desert, there’s another new class coming to the game dubbed the Mystic, meant to function as the female equivalent of the male-only Striker class. (This is apparently easier than just making one class open to both genders.) There’s a full gallery of screenshots and a teaser trailer down below; the Mystic herself is supposed to be an orphaned girl from Calpheon who was taken in and trained in the Far East, only to journey back when her male sparring partner (i.e., the Striker) headed back.

You can also check out character creation screenshots and video courtesy of Dulfy. The video is just below and shows off the options available, from character build (very skinny to “slightly thicker Michelle Rodriguez”), muscles (waifish girl to a waifish girl with the hint of abs covered in enough baby oil to slide on sandpaper), and hair (high ponytails and cute pixie cuts rule the day). Between that and the class trailer/screenshots down below, it might be hard to wait for your punch-happy lady character, but at least you’ll know how you want her to look.

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Wisdom of Nym: The numbers game in Final Fantasy XIV

It’s not really hard to figure out the best stats for melding in order to do the maximum damage in Final Fantasy XIV. You have, ultimately, only a few real options, and with the removal of Accuracy as an option, none of them is actually going to make or break important points. The problem is that asking “what can I meld to do maximum damage” is perhaps not always the right question to ask.

The matter of stat weights and best-in-slot gear has already been attracting ferocious debate in various parts of the community, and you know the debate has gotten to a fever pitch when Yoshida actually addresses one of the stupider new customs in a live letter. (That would be tanks wearing 270 STR accessories, for the record.) So I think it’s well past the point to talk about the issue of tank damage, tank scaling, and numbers in general. They may not carry the allure of story sequences, but they’re still important.

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Chronicles of Elyria won’t stop talking about tribes

If you’re just now tuning into Chronicles of Elyria after an extended absence, then welcome to Tribesmania! That’s the informal term we’re giving to the recent and extended focus that the team is giving to the MMO’s tribes — its breedable races — and how what is relatively simple in other online games is incredibly detailed and complicated here.

It’s up to you to decide whether a system that requires several videos to explain is over-designed or visionary. It’s up to us to share with you the latest dev chat on tribes, which takes on the top 10 topics from the community (and there’s yet more coming!).

“We do want each tribe to be equally desirable to a degree,” said Creative Director Jeremy Walsh, going on to admit that some tribes are more complex and have specific advantages over others. Give it a watch below.

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Star Wars: The Old Republic explains the changes coming to Engineer and Saboteur

Engineer Snipers and Saboteur Gunslingers are getting tuned down a bit in the next major patch for Star Wars: The Old Republic. The official post on the matter states the reasoning pretty simply: The spec was swimming in energy and was dealing more damage than intended, so damage on both Plasma Probe/Incendiary Grenade and Electrified Railgun/Blazing Speed was tuned down while the number of Cluster Bombs/Contingency Charges generated were also tuned down. It shouldn’t cripple the playstyle, but it should make for a more balanced level of DPS.

On the bright side, players will get a mild quality of life buff by adding Quickdraw/Takedown to the list of abilities which add or extend the duration of Electrified Railgun/Blazing Speed, thus avoiding some uncomfortable bits of the spec rotation. No one likes being made weaker, obviously, but hopefully the change won’t be seen as the worst thing ever by dedicated players.

Source: Official Site via Dulfy

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Lost Ark details changes coming with the game’s second closed beta test

It can be hard to be interested in a title that may eventually be ported over to North America but has a dearth of information available on a whole. Lost Ark is heading into its second closed beta, and the good news for fans watching the title from afar is that a whole bunch of translated information about the second closed beta is now available, courtesy of Steparu. Two of the existing classes (Warlord and Bard) are getting extensive reworks, with the former becoming far more tank-heavy and the latter adding more emphasis on support skills instead of straight DPS.

The second closed beta will also feature the Arcana, Destroyer, and Summoner classes. Arcana is all about drawing cards and unleashing semi-randomized effects, the Destroyer uses a big hammer to smash things, and the Summoner summons things to serve as either a DPS or a tank-style character. There’s more information to come, certainly; for now, you can just enjoy what we have so far in translation.

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Diablo III releases the Necromancer today

If you’ve been waiting for the newest class in Diablo III to make you feel alive again, the good news is that it’s arriving today. The Necromancer is here with all of the corpse-bursting antics you could want, and after all sorts of lore posts, cinematic trailers, and mechanical discussions, you’re probably more than ready to stride into the world of spreading death and decay for fun and profit than you would have normally expected.

If you need to catch up on the details of the class, we’ve got a roundup for you just below the cut, along with the introduction cinematic for the lady Necromancer for those planning to roll one at home. The Necromancer DLC will run you $15, so budget that small expenditure and get ready to play a class so old-school it’s practically undead.

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Diablo III previews the lore of the Necromancer and new patch 2.6 areas

You may well not need the lore behind Diablo III’s Necromancer to enjoy the class. All you need to know is that it’s a class that revolves around dealing with the dead or dying, and since dead-or-dying organisms make up 90% of the population in any Diablo game, it’s kind of a given that you’ll have plenty to do. But if you do want that lore, you can find out all about what makes the Necromancer unique right here, whether you’re an old fan of the class from its original appearance or just love the idea of making corpses explode now.

Of course, the new areas coming with patch 2.6 will be relevant even if you’re not going to be getting on the corpse-exploding train, so you probably will want to read up on those and watch the video just below the cut. Players will be visiting the Shrouded Moors, the Temple of the Firstborn, and the ever-changing Realms of Fate. Of course, if you’re eager to play a Necromancer and explore the new areas, you’re in a perfect state.

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Riders of Icarus offers players the chance to pre-create a new Trickster

The next class for Riders of Icarus is arriving with the launch of the Rise of the Trickster update, the appropriately named Trickster class. If you’ve longed to defeat your enemies with the power of what appears to be a seven-year-old girl, you’ve found your class. And while the class isn’t actually arriving until the update launches on July 6th, you can pre-create your Trickster right now in advance of the launch.

Keep in mind that you are still limited to a maximum of six character slots on a given server, so if you already have six characters you won’t be able to make a Trickster. (The game will erroneously tell you to purchase another character slot, which will not work.) You can also still register your pre-launch pack until June 30th if you want to nab some extra doodads, so make sure to take care of your business as necessary before the Tricksters rise.

Source: Official Site; thanks to Vergest for the tip!

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World of Warcraft’s class design AMA examines the how and why of tuning changes

No matter what class you play in World of Warcraft, you’re probably certain that the developers hate your class in particular and love some other class that you don’t play. So why hasn’t your damage been tuned up? The recent class design AMA can be read in full on Reddit (or you can just pick through the answers), but the short version – as stated multiple times – is that class balance isn’t just a numbers problem but a scientific one. Developers have to look at available data and see if a job’s damage is, in fact, underperforming, and then they have to do their best to figure out why that may be. It could be poor gear secondaries, it could be bad play habits, it could be having less time to do damage for classes (like Windwalker) requiring a long ramp-up period.

Obviously, this is something that takes a lot of effort and work to get just right, and the developers also note that this is part of the reason why class adjustments are frequently announced only as they’re about to happen; it takes time to collect the data and decide on a course of action. The full discussion on Reddit is worth a read if you’re interested in more specifics, or you could just read about recruiting for a guild in-game on Tinder. That apparently works now.

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