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Posted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 10:58 pm Post subject: [Skill Change]: Eternal Soldier HtH Tree
Okay, what I will recommend will likely offend and shock several people, and maybe completely unfair and unbalanced, but I wanted to throw it out here, anyway, as it's bugged me endlessly.
Simply put: I'm suggesting removing the Way of the Lashing Kick, reducing Master of the Martial Form to 30 CP and keeping Master of Hidden Energy at its 60 CP cost, as a child of the cheapened (and possibly renamed) Master of the Martial Form.
My logic is as follows: Way of the Lashing Kick is an artifact skill. It's a carryover from Nexus War, when Eternal Soldiers just had that one ability for boosting HtH damage and nobody ever really considered it a viable build. (Or, at the very least, it wasn't a mainstream option.)
Then these two new skills, Master of the Martial Form and Master of Hidden Energy, popped into being and everyone went "Wow, HtH ES's are cool (or mainstream or whatever) now!" Unfortunately, when actually looking at the skill, one will quickly realize that the parent and child skill overlap in a completely non-synergistic manner.
An Eternal Soldier with a full [Adjective] Attack tree, accuracy skills and Lashing Kick will kick for 12 at an 85% hit-rate. An Eternal soldier with Master of the Martial Form and the above trees plus Boxing will Soft Strike for 14 at a 95% hit-rate. For soak-heavier targets, he or she will hit with Cobra Strike for 16 at a 80% hit-rate. In either case, hand-based attacks become strictly preferable the moment the second CP investment has been made. This results in Lashing Kick being a moderately meaningless CP tax for an already CP-strapped build. (I will grant, however, that gun-tree ES's suffer from this.)
Heck, let's take the analogy even further. An Eternal Soldier with the full Attack tree, accuracy trees, Boxing, and a pair of Brass Knuckles will hit at 85% for 11 damage. This means that a true HtH-focused ES will gain one (count it, one) point of damage for their 30 CP investment. At least until they buy the child skill.
(At that point, they'll lose it again.)
Obviously, HtH ES's are strong, when built properly (and I'll admit that it's an easy build to do, too). However, to fill their role as tanks, they have to spread their CPs quite thinly. This means that a sane ES, who wants to fulfill a tanky-fighter role is better off ignoring Master of Hidden Energy in favor of, say, Way of Lightning and Way of Earth, two excellent, if somewhat boring skills. This is a travesty, because Master of Hidden Energy is cool. It lets you play the martial-artist whose understanding has climbed to such heights that he or she can channel her inner energy into heat, electricty, cold, or even arcane power.
Perhaps this change would necessitate a change in the way the ES HtH tree is built, perhaps pushing some of the bonuses from Master of the Martial Form into Master of Hidden Energy. I'm not sure. I do know, however, that I strongly dislike the current paradigm.
(In the interest of full disclosure: I will have an Eternal Soldier by the end of this breath. However, he will be Melee, of all things, as it allows me to invest in more tankiness during T3 than HtH does (to the tune of 90-150 CP, as I said), while only losing 2 points of damage from a Cobra-Striking HtH ES. And that's assuming that I don't use Tarnished Swords.)
Edit: Here's a summary of the new suggestion
Way of the Lashing Kick:REMOVED Master of the Martial Form: Changed to "Way of the Martial Form." Loses passive +5% to-hit with HtH attacks, retains special attacks, cost reduced from 60 CP to 30 CP.
Master of Hidden Energy: CP cost and charged attacks unchanged. Now a child skill of "Way of the Martial Form."
Last edited by grandioseMumble on Fri May 04, 2012 7:18 am; edited 1 time in total
I'd like to see that H2H ES build to become cheaper. It's a surprisingly expensive build. ES can't pick up the way of water or the way of anti-toxin without cutting some corners in damage skills.
I agree with this & think this suggestion is a good way to implement the needed changes. Given the harder path to get there, the H2H ES should be the ES that can go after most of the dodge tank but also have their own decent offensive flavor. With the current CP costs it's really the opposite, the H2H ES is the least likely build to be able to afford dodge.
I am moderately impressed by how positive this feedback is. I did, however, come up with a potential problem: Master of Hidden Energy also gives adaptation immunity to the energy type used. With the lowered CP cost, this could make Eternal Soldiers too powerful in active combat or stronghold defense situations. Does this seem to be a problem to anyone else?
I also like this suggestion. However, I would modify it so that with the 30 CP version, the Eternal Soldier no longer gains the passive +5% to-hit from Martial Form. Otherwise it's +2/+10% for 30 CP, which while not as ridiculous as some skills still seems OP in terms of value for CP.
Well, you are removing the bonus to Kick damage, so you're left with a Haymaker at best. If not for Martial Form giving you the Strike attacks, the HtH ES wouldn't deal enough damage.
I don't understand the issue with this and my suggestion. Martial form gives bonus damage in the form of Soft and Cobra strikes, which are +3/+5% and +5/-10% respectively. Either of these are strictly better than the +1/-5% given by Haymakers. If Way of the Martial Form (assuming that the names changes to match other 30 CP ES skills) is in fact switched to 30 CP, while Master of Hidden Energy remains 60 CP, full-build HtH ES's will see no change in damage output, and a small increase in utility, as they now have another 60 CP to spend on defensive and other skills.
If you're referring to Ragwortshire's suggestion, I understand your confusion, but he isn't actually suggesting any change in the damage of the modified strikes, but rather a the removal of the flat +5% HtH to-hit currently given by the skill. I think that trading 60 CP for -5% to-hit on full-build HtH ES's is a great deal.
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