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Change hyperzerk to help DKs survive

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by Mirrors, Oct 21, 2023.

  1. Mirrors
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    Mirrors Zakum Retired Staff

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    This has been on my mind as a potential DK player but I would like to suggest changes to "active berzerk" or as the player base calls it "hyper zerk".

    This is how it currently works:

    Current Hyperzerk

    Currently, hyperzerk works so that all incoming damage brings you to 1%. This is great in bosses like Pink Bean where you might not be able to necessarily tank touch damage. But it also makes it so that red snails also give you 99% damage and put you on the brink of death.

    For a class that already struggles with user retention (and tbh not because of lack of dpm), one of the biggest complaints about the class according to the users is simply the survivability. Currently, as things are, hyperzerk only really achieves that in situations where the current DK is unable to tank damage while at optimal Berserk range, and are in danger of dying (maybe around 15-17k HP).

    For the most part from my observations most DKs do not attempt to hyperzerk despite the massive dpm increase because currently it is too risky to do so, even in bosses such as JC where it isn't that bad and even if smokescreen is available. (Any DK players please correct me if I'm wrong).

    For many players the level of risk has to be acceptable because of you mistime the length of hyperzerk you will die, and it's better to do consistent okay damage than do great damage but die and then do less damage in the overall run. For NL or Hero players who have easier gameplay to achieve maximum dpm, it seems like a great challenge and struggle to play a DK only to achieve less dpm.

    Heck even for other high intensity "active" classes such as Sair and Bucc, they do not struggle with the same survivability issues in order to output a good amount of their potential dpm.

    Which is fine... if that's what the people want but I think time has shown again and again that there needs to be a certain level of comfort for a class to get more players, and currently DKs are a bit too risky and require too many brain cells to be an attractive option. If we want to make more DK players on the server then I think we should revisit some of their changes. And properly scale the risk to reward ratio while increasing survivability.

    TL;DR Current Hyperzerk is a step in the right direction to increase survivability, but it doesn't seem to make the DK class comfier to play, and it can be improved.

    Proposed Changes

    I propose that we change hyperzerk to be more like the Focus Sash item from Pokemon.

    Instead of all damage bringing the DK to 1%, make incoming damage normal (so red snails will do 1 damage as regular), but if a strike is fatal then it brings them to 1hp. If they are already at 1hp and get hit again then they die as usual.

    I feel like this will give the DKs an easier time to zerk properly, as well as lower the skill cap needed to output decent dpm. They will be able to repot to 30k after being hit and comfortably tank most attacks while in this state.

    I know this change might be too busted so I think it'd be fine to increase the cooldown to compensate, especially since Berserks dpm graph has been increased recently and having 50% uptime on 120% damage might be a little crazy.

    Thank you for listening!! If you have any other suggestions please let me know! And feel free to correct me on anything.
     
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  2. beegoratto
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    beegoratto Skelosaurus

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    This is actually a really cool suggestion. One aspect I like about it is that it helps DKs ability to live Sed significantly, increasing their utility as Sed targets in HT and making them a significantly higher priority pick in content like Auf and PB, while not being as big of a boon to sed mules since it's much more "active" than the 2 min buff time of Shads.
     
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  3. -ovv
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    -ovv Horntail

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    Great suggestion. An alternative suggestion I've seen floating around is a significant buff to Achilles for each of the 3 warrior classes, tuned to their specific needs. DKs are the only one of the three that play with their life on the line, so a significant buff to the DK Achilles could be warranted.

    But the survive fatality with 1 hit mechanic is one that exists in a lot of other games, especially for the Berzerker types, and it'd go really well with the DK kit, I think.

    Another is give DKs alchemist along with pot duration side-effect to see the NLs implode. :V
     
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  4. Pasta
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    Pasta Game Developer Staff Member Game Developer

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    Hmm. The idea of active Berserk was to double down on the risk:reward, by letting the Dark Knight give up on their defenses in order to output more damage than they otherwise could.

    I'm not sure how I'd feel with a change as suggested, for a couple of reasons: the objectively less important being that, in my opinion, it would clash with the concept of Berserk itself, in that being at lower HP would no longer pose a higher risk for a bigger damage gain (to which one could argue that current active Berserk does the same by forcing any damage to not kill you - though being instantly brought down to 1 HP, in our mind, was the risk in itself).
    But more importantly, this effect would still be on a cooldown (likely higher than the current one, depending on the extra benefits). Wouldn't the fact itself that some downtime exists, mean that it wouldn't be reliable as an "extra survivability" tool?

    I have a counter-suggestion, which actually floated for a bit in our minds before we decided on the current iteration. More modern Dark Knights have a skill, Final Pact, a passive effect that turns you invincible once you receive damage that would otherwise kill you. During this status, you have a set amount of time to perform a specific task (I believe hitting monsters X times): if you complete it, you're brought back to life, and the revival effect is put on cooldown. If you fail, you're killed as you would have been.
    Is this an effect that could fit in our game? Or is it too modern/custom of an addition?
     
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  5. LeonardoJF
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    LeonardoJF Zakum

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  6. Hiyo
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    Hiyo Headless Horseman Retired Staff

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    The pact idea is cool! Even if this doesn't happen for DKs, I am thrilled to see concepts like this be explored cause it means we can see reworks for other classes in a direction that gives them unique playstyles.

    On the idea of pacts, you could give DKs a pact with their beholder/draconic power and have it act as a vessel that has its own HP (similar to Corsair's boat) but you just redirect a percentage of the damage to your vessel, and allow the DK to also heal the vessel through certain abilities such as sacrifice, it can be reworked to have a cooldown and the DK would sacrifice HP to heal the vessel. It can be too much but I think the concept can be cool to give the class the identity of a pact made with a dragon to gain power and manage 2 HP bars, and if the vessel dies out, the effect is gone until the cooldown is over. The DK can be more vulnerable when the vessel is dead and can give skill expression to DK players to manage it to allow them to have more uptime being sturdy and do more damage, much like corsairs managing their boat by dismounting before receiving a deadly attack to preserve their boat uptime.
     
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  7. beegoratto
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    beegoratto Skelosaurus

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    I think one of the biggest issues with the fulfillment of this fantasy is how predictable the game is. In most fights, there's an upper threshold for damage you'll be taking, and that damage usually occurs incredibly frequently, meaning you cannot drop below that threhold (outside of active zerk). There's no risk, really, it's more of "just stay above this number to deal max damage". With active zerk this instead becomes "just don't get seduced, and otherwise you're pretty much invincible" making it a pretty much useless ability in fights like Pink Bean and Auf while it functions essentially as an invulnerability mechanic everywhere else. In both scenarios, there's not really "risk" in the sense that we think of it, because the outcome of both scenarios is highly predictable.

    One thing that you see in other games with successful high risk, high reward mechanics is an element of randomness or unpredictability, and it's on the player's judgement to really toe that line of how far they want to push boundaries. The sensation you get for a lot of these is a kind of desperate, "please work please work" plea where the player isn't sure exactly what the outcome will be when they make a gamble. With the exception of DK in HT preheads staying at 1 HP and only potting when damage comes out, there's very little of this that can actually be replicated with current Zerk mechanics, at least to a reliable degree in most fights.

    The way I see it, if you're really trying to double down on the risk:reward, you're trying to create a mini-game of chicken, where the player is incentivized to not veer off until the absolute last possible second, and you want to create scenarios where the outcome isn't already pre-determined and there's a level of uncertainty. Current hyperzerk mechanic is the opposite of that, seeing as how you pretty much can't die as long as you're not seduced. There's no risk, there's no decision making by the player, it's just "don't use this when seduce is in play". In my opinion, OP's suggestion is a slightly more elegant version of this scenario, as it's also low risk, but at least it provides a baseline level of consistency to let players actually play the game when agency-negating mechanics are present. In a world where you're truly trying to double down on the risk:reward scenario, the Final Pact ability you mentioned is a much better fit, as it fulfills both requirements (the player wants to keep their health as low as possible without proccing Final Pact, but when it procs they're not guaranteed to live without meeting the live condition).
     
  8. iPippy
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    iPippy Nightshadow

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    I'd said it before, and I still believe it holds true: the problem itself has been insisting on doubling down on zerk damage. The power of survivability is huge in today's meta, albeit mostly because of pb. And more damage alone wouldnt fix warrior in pb with the survival gap across classes, especially if corsair is anything to go off of.

    Here's the fun fact of the day:
    *Chance for statue to hit a dex-bucc (999 avoid vs 260 boss accuracy*) = 260/(0.9*999) - 1/9 = 17.8% hit rate

    *Chance for statue to hit an NL (750 avoid* vs 260 boss accuracy) = 0.7*[260/(0.9*750) - 1/9] = 19.2% hit rate

    Notes:
    1) the Wisemen seem to have slightly lower accuracy (~250), and ariel/one of munin entries has 265 accuracy).
    2) Idk NL gearing well enough, but saw pb dpm posts ranging anywhere from 700-800 avoid, likely due to pendant choices. 700 avoid NL would still have 21.1% hit rate, about as likely to get hit as guardian is to activate.

    Why do I divert yet another thread to thieves? Because DPM aside, this is what tanking means in this game, and puts on full display the MASSIVE disparity among classes. I didn't even mention shadower's extra +10% shifter (lowering hitrate by another ~2-3%) and effectively doubled health pool.

    But warriors get survival tools too, right? Well, about that...

    Hero/pally specific:
    * 20% reduced boss touch damage (Not physical damage, touch damage)
    * 20% guardian, only if you take the devil's bargain and go 1h. Which brings their magic attack dodge rate up to.... 20%.

    Dk specific:
    * 40% element resist (actually nice against bird spam i hear)
    * 5% hp/4 sec regen when dragon's blood is active/not on cooldown
    * active zerk's "make everything a 2 hit kill" when active/not on cooldown

    All warriors:
    * 15% damage reduction
    * a free trial for hp washing lite (don't even THINK about actually investing the amounts of NX other classes are allowed to for extra survivability).
    * 90% stance. Just kidding, stance is qol, not survivability. Just dodging does everything stance does anyways.

    Even if the dragon balls were assembled and these perks were all combined into one mega-warrior, I doubt it'd be enough to compete with the real tanks.

    Of course, by balance changes, its obvious we haven't been looking to "make warriors tanks again", or even just making the invincible classes mortal again (NL, Shad, or even bucc in remotely favorable conditions). Instead we say we want to make dk do even more damage in favorable, probably dummy conditions (the sair effect), but leave them little better than dogwater in the endgame content where they are likely to be most depended on to survive for hb. If that had any chance of working, we'd have seen a higher sair population among the playerbase/runners.

    Tl;dr continuing to buff warrior damage (especially dk) is simply patching the symptoms of warrior issues instead of the cause. It will still leave them unplayed and/or dead in the corner in favor of dex-buccs with dpm (thieves). Even with better survival rates, warriors won't be topping the dpm charts of pb anytime soon, but even currently experienced warriors can carry their weight.
     
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  9. Pasta
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    Pasta Game Developer Staff Member Game Developer

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    There are definitely ways to do that, of course. But all the ones I can think of (Shad/NL's dodging be more active instead of simply avoid+shifter passive, for example) would go in a very custom way.
    Same goes for ways to make warriors tanky: obvious options that come to mind are ways for a warrior to actively drag aggro, and more defenses/immunities.

    I think we need a "how custom is too custom" discussion, will look into that.
     
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  10. -ovv
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    -ovv Horntail

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    Dark sight to regain shifter cooldown :V
     
  11. Zeya
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    Zeya Orange Mushroom

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    The current DrK would be a really interesting style in modern where there's a lot more focus on mechanical intensity than there is "sit and hold button, hope you don't get sed"

    The core issue is just that really until anything after Von Leon that's kinda the mechanical intensity you dealt with. So while there is something really cool about the ability to "sacrifice defense for damage" it's just less impactful imo when the mechanical intensity just isn't there in this version of the game to make the skill expression it allows for shine.

    TL;Dr game is very ugga dugga, so higher skill ceilings naturally aren't going to be popular as you can't *truly* make use of it.
     
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  12. Golboy
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    Golboy Red Snail

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    I love the idea of invincible, but i think it might be better approached as a skill that needs charging instead of having a pact, for example after 100 attacks you will gain the ability to activate hyperzerk for 15 seconds, during this time you get bonus stats and cant die, i think it can make this skill very interesting while actually helping to add some more dmg to the dk class
     
  13. HeartOfGold
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    HeartOfGold Red Snail

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    1) Can we change 3rd Job skill Sacrifice into an active buff? Upon cast, dk gains ignore enemy defence IED buff for 30 seconds with 60 second cooldown (50% uptime).
    1.5) or can we change Sacrifice into a passive skill that functions similarly to old zerk. When the character is below 50% HP, all attacks will have the IED as applied effect.

    2) Can we also buff Zerk: keep the damage as we have it now, but when the character is below 1% HP, the damage Lines will always land a Crit. (Synergizes with active berserk’s 1/1). If possible, the crit damage can be stacked with SE buff.

    3)This is for all 3 warrior class.. can we please buff Stance proc chance at max level to 100%?

    4)I like the idea with Beholder serving as free resurrection for dark knight. Perhaps if you die, you can activate Beholder to instantly ress you (the amount of hp you are ress’d with can be dependent on beholder’s level- similar to how bsp ress works now). However, activating the beholder ress will put all the beholder effects (mastery boost, hex, aura) onto a cooldown period (30 minutes at max level) where you can’t benefit from any of those skills until cooldown is off. (Using TL can reset the cooldown).

    5) just some QOL, but while berserk is active, can we make drk immune to stun for the duration of the buff? When stunned, we lose out about 1/3 of the active buff uptime. Secondly, while berserk is active, can we re-cast it a second time to cancel the active effect? (Shortcut to right clicking the buff). This could be a player skill issue, but there were times where I intended to cancel active zerk but unintentionally right clicked another buff instead because the zerk icon got shifted due to party members casting their rebuffs at the same time.
     
  14. OP
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    Mirrors Zakum Retired Staff

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    I know that some down time would exist but I think it would be reliable in that at least for those 30-45 seconds you know you won't get 1HKO, at the very least it's more reliable than it is in its current state.

    I understand where you're coming from! It does. I've just been playing a Bear Totem Barbarian in my latest DnD playthrough which has a very similar trope mechanic called Rage.

    How this works is that once you start raging your attack goes up significantly (like Berserk) but enemies can also hit you harder (arguably because you're just swinging your axe around like crazy). However there is a class path you can take called Bear, in which any damage against you is halved (except for magic damage) while you are raging. I think this could also be applied in this instance. Maybe we can do something like that as well? Halve the physical damage while the DrK is raging? Magic damage still hits the same?

    There's a few other barbarian paths that might be interesting too:

    • Elk. While you're raging and aren't wearing heavy armor, your walking speed increases by 15 feet. The spirit of the elk makes you extraordinarily swift.
    • Tiger. While raging, you can add 10 feet to your long jump distance and 3 feet to your high jump distance. The spirit of the tiger empowers your leaps.
    • Wolf. While you're raging, your friends have advantage on melee attack rolls against any creature within 5 feet of you that is hostile to you. The spirit of the wolf makes you a leader of hunters.
    There's a few other things on that page that might be interesting, but I thought that we can draw upon the classic DnD trope of a raging berserker type.

    We can also draw upon Tryndamere from League of Legends, who literally is a DrK because his passive is pretty much the same as Berserk, (he gains attack and fury the lower the HP is).
    Basically he cannot be killed while raging, which is very similar to what I'm proposing.

    Ya this is cool too

    Regardless our DrK is already mega custom compared to vanilla GMS so we might as well lean into it and make it better :)
     
  15. RegalStar
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    RegalStar Nightshadow

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    Just a note that's the pre-destiny effect. Nowadays Final Pact just revives you and puts itself on CD, and by either killing X monsters or hitting a boss monster X times you can reduce the CD once. You are also able to choose between three different pacts which have different cooldowns and puts the character in total invincibility for different amount of time after revival (2s iframe at 180s/110s cd, 8s iframe at 260s/180s cd, or 40s iframe at 900s/600s cd).

    Of course, DrKs don't really have the whole "low HP risk/reward" thing any more (the gimmick got taken by Demon Avengers). Nowadays they actually want to keep their HP up as much as possible, with a couple of passives/skills that provide benefits only when the character is above a certain % of their HP, so unless the whole class in ML gets revamped it wouldn't really make much sense.
     
  16. Tommygunner
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    Tommygunner Mixed Golem

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    I agree DK needs more QoL. The problem with "high risk high reward" is that damage can't be too high or it'll be too broken in some contents. so therefore another way to look at the issue would be to lower the "risk" part instead of increasing the "reward" part.

    For example, what Mirror said is a good idea, or, reducing all incoming damage by half while active berserk. It would allow people to berserk at a lower threshold and wouldn't be detrimental during seduce. (to be honest I think DK should get more damage mitigation at all times. DK's kit should HELP DK's playstyle of low HP).

    I think both these ideas would make DK less of a hassle to play. Right now all the DKs i know barely use active berserk, kind of a shame, really, as the majority of the rework was centered around "active" berserk.
     
  17. Gurk
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    Gurk Nightshadow

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  18. Thuglifer
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    Thuglifer Capt. Latanica

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    DK's have no option of utilizing shields and/or defense plays, which tells us how offensive it was designed to be. So the mechanic of getting reduced to 1 is fine imo.

    But I'd like to add onto the existing Active Zerk; I've mentioned before, was to grant Seduce immunity on active zerk only, which should cap the floor level of risks and promote further active zerk plays. Where literally from the looks of the zerk aura surrounding the DK, acts as a berserk mode disregarding any obstructions in the way. While some other ideas such as super KB during active zerk arised amongst my discussions and could be expanded should the above be non-viable.
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2023
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  19. LeonardoJF
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    LeonardoJF Zakum

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    I like this idea for two points, because of the QoL that would give a nice boost to DPM, and because it can be used strategically
     
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