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Games. Tech. Musings.

Games offline and online. Technology. Random stuff.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Clamatius Status

Regular readers may have noticed that they aren't.

I advise them to address complaints to Toddler Central Command, who have instructed their miniature Stormtroopers of Chaos that 5:30am is a great time to get up in the morning.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Guild Wars: Premade Build Contest

Esoteric Warriors, the winner of Season 2 of the GWWC, got the opportunity to work with ArenaNet to revamp the premade character builds. They decided to share that prize with the GW community by offering the opportunity for you to submit builds - one of the 5 top-rated builds that match the criteria will be picked as a pre-made.

For what it's worth, I submitted the Necromancer build I've been using recently in Random Arenas - it's a lot of fun to play and reasonably effective. Makes a change from endless monking (which is the other viable option). {plug} Give it a try and then give it a vote! Or just believe me and give me a vote anyway! :) {/plug}

Friday, June 02, 2006

Guild Wars: Game Update

A lot of fairly significant changes in the final game update that made it through. Highlights:
  • Decreased the Health penalty on attribute-boosting major runes from 50 to 35. Existing runes are unaffected.
  • Improved chat in alliance battles so that players can see party messages from all members of their team.
  • Removed the Thief from the Imperial Isle guild battle.
  • Shadow stepping no longer moves you farther than the radius of the radar.
  • Soul Reaping now only gives half Energy from Spirits.
  • Palm Strike: reduced recharge time to 10 seconds; increased damage to 10..85.
  • Golden Phoenix Strike: increased Energy cost to 10.
  • Aura of Displacement: increased recharge time to 20 seconds.
  • Gaze from Beyond: fixed a bug that caused this skill to ignore armor.
  • Soul Twisting: increased the recharge time to 15 seconds.
The rune tweak just on its own is a big change (and long overdue, in my opinion). This opens up many more options when designing builds, especially for characters that benefit from a fairly wide spread of skills (Mesmers spring to mind).

Meanwhile, pretty much the only build that Assassins were being used for in PvP was seriously nerfed. Assassins are weak in PvE as well, so I suspect some love for them is needed. The boost to Palm Strike gives an alternative route for avoiding lead attacks - it's unclear whether that'll be good enough to me.

It remains to be seen whether the Soul Reaping update will fix or over-nerf the problem combination of Ritualist spirit spammers and Necromancer primaries.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Guild Wars: Soul Reaping controversy

So the finals of the GWWC went to Esoteric Warriors [EW] over Irrestible Blokes [iB]. Since EW were seeded higher, they could choose the guild hall for games 1 and 3 of the match. EW picked the Imperial Hall and went with a Necromancer spiking build which abuses the death of Ritualist spirits for an amazingly powerful energy engine. Soul Reaping triggers about every 2 seconds when this thing is running at full power, apparently.

For normal GvG, this strategy isn't terribly effective because the opposing team can just split into an attacking and defending team and force you into a defensive position. However, on the Imperial Hall, it's virtually impossible to split against a spike team because you need the Guild Thief to get into the opposing base - and to get him there he'll have to run right past the spikers.

In other news, apparently this has caught on like wildfire in Heroes' Ascent, since fighting in a big ball is the order of the day in that format. Blood Spike (using Shadow Strike and Vampiric Gaze) is normally used instead of Feast of Corruption as the kill mechanism. So if you're going to go in with a HA team in the near future, I'd at least plan on facing this kind of build along with the normal swarms of IWAY.

The expected fix for this issue is that Soul Reaping will no longer trigger off spirit death. However, HA fans will be sad to learn that since Season 3 of the GWWC has now started that probably won't happen any time soon.

Update: apparently that's not the case - after the skill update yesterday, now Soul Reaping only gives half energy for spirits dying. Will that be enough? We shall see.