Custom Skills and Sword Arts in 3.0
20 members have voted
1. (READ ENTIRE POST FIRST) Which option to you believe is best?
Allow players that reach the benchmark a choice between creating a Custom Skill or Custom Sword Art.
Allow players that reach the benchmark to create only a Custom Skill.0
Allow players that reach the benchmark to create only a Custom Sword Art.
I do not want either of these mechanics to be implemented. (If so, please explain why.)
Custom Skills and Sword Arts in 3.0
Hello there, fellow vestigial remnants of our casually decaying reality.
There are some big changes coming in 3.0 when it comes to your Skills and how you can sort them. There will no longer be Skill slots, meaning you can collect as many standard Skills as you want. We will, however, be implementing a cap on Extra Skills, as well as reclassifying certain Skills into the Extra Skills category. As the system is set up currently, it's all too common to see players at a higher level filling a "Jack of All Trades" sort of role, where they simply have so much SP that they can spec into any specialty. Someone can be a tank, DPS, support, medic, and scout all at once. While we enjoy the versatility that our system allows, we do believe that there should be some element that forces players to pick and choose which role they are fulfilling at a given time. Changing the Extra Skill system into one with a limited number of slots and designating certain key Skills as Extra Skills accomplishes this without compromising one's ability to acquire and utilize as many standard core Skills as they desire.
Here's the table for how the Extra Skill slots would work.
Slot 1 - Unlocked upon completion of the Gemini.
Slot 2 - Unlocked at Tier 2
Slot 3 - Unlocked at Tier 3
Slot 4 - Unlocked at Tier 4
Slot 5 - Unlocked at Tier 5
Slot 6 - Unlocked at Tier 6
Slot 7 - Unlocked at Tier 7
Slot 8 - Unlocked at Tier 8
Slot 9 - Unlocked at Tier 9
Slot 10 - Unlocked at Tier 10
Extra Skills will be unlocked via completion of certain quests. Similar to the way that mods work now, which Extra Skills you have active in your available slots can be changed freely while out of combat - but this must be declared. This means that you still have a great level of control over your kit, and can be as versatile as you want to be within reason. You just simply won't be able to do everything all at the same time, which will encourage cooperation with your peers when it comes to more difficult challenges. Role designation will be important as you coordinate party optimization with the rest of your team, but you won't be stuck in that role forever if you don't want to be.
As with most things in 3.0, this may be subject to change before the final draft of the project is produced. But this brief explanation was necessary so we could dig into the good part.
Custom Skills and Sword Arts.
The part I'm sure you've been waiting for. You probably read the title and were like, "Woah, that sounds awesome." Then you had to sit through my boring Systems lecture. You may have thought to yourself at some point, "What does this have to do with Custom Skills and Custom Sword Arts?" All will be explained with time, you eager beaver.
You see, there are going to be benchmark rewards for reaching certain Paragon Levels in 3.0. One such proposed benchmark reward would be a choice between creating a Custom Skill or Custom Sword Art. For additional clarification, the benchmark reward would be creating a single Custom Skill or Custom Sword Art. Let's break this down.
If the earner of this benchmark level opts to create a Custom Skill, they will get to do just that. The Custom Skill will cost 10 SP to add to their kit, and will behave as an Extra Skill. Given its cost, it will be expected to be a Skill of middle-of-the-road quality. Good enough that 10 SP is worth the purchase, but not so good that 10 SP seems cheap for it. All Custom Skills will go through staff for approval via your evaluation thread before use.
Custom Skills should be seen as an opportunity to either round out your build, or push your specialization further in a way that makes it unique and stands out from the crowd. There are no strict rules for constructing this Custom Skill, only that it should be reasonable and comparable in value to the other Extra Skills that exist. As these Custom Skills will be handled on a case-by-case basis, there is no firm rubric for how they should be constructed. Once you've reached the benchmark Paragon Level, you need only submit your Custom Skill concept. If staff does not believe that it can be approved as-is, we will give our feedback and suggestions for how it should be adjusted.
Now here's the kicker. Custom Skills can be taught to fellow players. If you are in possession of a Custom Skill, simply roleplay a scenario in which your character teaches the Skill to another. Once the relevant thread is closed, the Custom Skill will then become available for purchase for the other character. That character may then also teach the Custom Skill to other characters. In this way, players can pick and choose who has access to the Custom Skill in question. You can create a Custom Skill to share with only your group of friends, or create one to share with everyone! How the Custom Skill propagates, if it does, is completely at the discretion of the player(s) that has/have it.
One important thing to note is that, under the current proposal, there is no limit to the number of Custom Skills that can be slotted congruently. A player could, conceivably, acquire four Custom Skills and fill up all of their Extra Skill slots with them in Tier 4. The only limitation is the limited number of Extra Skill slots itself. Filling up all of your Extra Skill slots with only Custom Skills would deprive your kit of other fundamental Extra Skills that exist. We are leaving this open at the time being to see how it plays out. However, we reserve the right to change this and impose a limitation to the number of Custom Skills that can be equipped congruently, or forbid the combined equipping of particular Custom Skills, at any time. If a combination of Extra Skills comes about that is particularly game-breaking, we will take steps to mitigate their abuse.
Custom Sword Arts
If the earner of this benchmark level opts to instead create a Custom Sword Art, guess what? They get to make a Custom Sword Art. The Custom Sword Art would be added to your SA list as a Rank 5 Sword Art. It will have the same cooldown as the already existing Rank 5 SA, and when you use one of your Rank 5 SAs, it will proc the cooldown for both. You get your choice of which attribute(s) to apply to the Custom Sword Art, between Stun, AoE, Delay, and Focus - even if what you choose doesn't coincide with the weapon type's standard attributes! All Custom Sword Arts will go through staff for approval via your evaluation thread before use.
Custom Sword Arts should be seen as an opportunity to round our your weapon type's versatility, and an allowance to pull off unique feats with your weapon that would otherwise be inaccessible. The rules are slightly more strict when it comes to Custom Sword Arts. High damaging Custom Sword Arts (read: high multiplier) will be limited to one attribute, but if you sacrifice some damage and go with a lower multiplier, you can choose up to two attributes for the Sword Art. In addition, a player may only have one Custom Sword Art equipped at a time. Just as with Custom Skills, Custom Sword Arts will also be handled on a case-by-case basis. Reach the Paragon Level benchmark, submit your concept, and staff will evaluate it. If it cannot be approved as-is, we will offer feedback for what would make the SA acceptable.
Custom Sword Arts may be taught, just like Custom Skills. The methodology of doing so is the same as with a Custom Skill; simply roleplay a scenario in which your character teaches the technique to another character. When the thread is closed, that Sword Art will then be available for the other character to use so long as they have achieved Rank 5 of their weapon mastery. That character will then be able to teach the Custom Sword Art to other characters. The really neat thing is that, unless specified by the creator, Custom Sword Arts are cross-compatible with other weapon types of the same handiness. So a Custom Sword Art made for a two-handed weapon will be compatible with all two-handed weapon types. Likewise. A Custom Sword Art created for a one-handed weapon will be compatible with all one-handed weapons. The creator of the Custom Sword Art may choose to designate a specific weapon type in the description of the Custom Sword Art, if they don't want to allow cross-compatibility.
Being that the current rules and restrictions are already fairly concrete, we don't expect much to change with them. But just as with the Custom Skills, we reserve the right to add additional rules, restrictions, conditions, addendums, or any other change we deem necessary at any time. If game-breaking exploits of this system are recognized and abused, we will take steps to mitigate this.
Summary and Concerns
We believe that this extra level of customization will really allow people to carve their own niche and flesh our character builds in an interesting way. It's also a fantastic reward for having put so much time and effort into the website. Being that the Custom Skills and Sword Arts need to go through the evaluation process, there is an additional burden placed on staff to process them. But rest assured, this is a particularly high benchmark to hit, and that itself will bottleneck the workload. It won't be another Father Wuotan situation where we are juggling dozens of requests at a time and scrambling to get everything sorted and approved.
One potential concern raised by my team is that this system, and the teaching mechanic that comes along with it, will create somewhat of a new economy within the roleplay. Custom Skill and Sword Art information has the potential to become a powerful bargaining tool. Moreover, there may be particularly tantalizing Custom Skills or Sword Arts that the creator chooses to keep more exclusive, teaching the Skill or Sword Art to only an inner circle of trusted peers (or even choosing not to teach it to anyone). It is because of these aspects that we have chosen to take this concept and put it to a vote with the community, rather than simply implementing it when it might not even be something that the community wants.
You are encouraged to include a post in response to this poll along with your vote to share your thoughts or concerns. When voting, please do not select the option for wanting neither of these mechanics just so you can insert a personal opinion about a different system you would like more. We would like to keep discussion on this poll relevant to the topic at hand, and not let it spiral into other concepts or debates. Please also do not select the option for wanting neither of these mechanics to propose an addendum to one or both of these mechanics. If you like the concept, but would like to see something detailed here adjusted or changed, vote in support of them and explain the change you would like to see in relation to the content of this blog. Following these basic rules will help keep our data accurate. Voting on this topic will automatically close on Friday, June 12th at noon. It did not specify if this is my noon, or a website-wide arbitrarily assigned noon, so don't ask me what kind of noon it is. It's just... noon.
That's it. You finally reached the end. Why are you still reading this? Go vote already.