The 27 January release will bring a number of general balance and profession changes to Tyria. We’d like to take a few moments to give some context to those changes and explain why some things are being changed in the ways that they are.
Might is an exceptionally strong boon, currently providing a total of 875 power and condition damage if stacked to its full potential. This makes might one of the biggest single sources of damage enhancement available to players. With this update, we’ll slightly tone down the overall benefit of might as well as target a few specific items that augment might gain.
- Might: The power and condition damage provided by this boon have been reduced from 35 per stack to 30.
Along with the change to might, we are also looking at the confusion condition in PvE. Confused creatures generally don’t swing as often, and the effects of the condition can feel a bit lackluster when they hit. To this end, we’ll improve the damage of confusion in PvE only.
- Confusion: The effect of condition damage on confusion has been increased by 33% in PvE only. This change does not affect PvP or WvW.
We’ll tone down the effects of a couple of specific items with the potential to far exceed the role they’re expected to fill.
- Superior Sigil of Battle: The amount of might granted from this item has been reduced from 3 stacks to 2 stacks. The duration remains at 20 seconds.
- Major Sigil of Battle: The amount of might granted from this item has been reduced from 2 stacks to 1 stack. The duration remains at 20 seconds.
- Rune of the Nightmare: The duration of fear applied from the sixth piece of this rune has been reduced from 2 seconds to 1 second. Its recharge has been reduced from 90 seconds to 60 seconds.
Structured Player vs. Player
The following items will now be available for use in Structured Player vs. Player:
Rune of Scavenging:
- (1) +25 Condition Damage
- (2) 25% chance when struck to cause your next attack to steal life. (Cooldown: 25s)
- (3) +50 Condition Damage
- (4) After using your healing skill, your next attack steals health. (Cooldown: 10s)
- (5) +100 Condition Damage
- (6) 7% of vitality is converted to condition damage.
Superior Sigil of Torment:
- 50% chance on critical: Apply AoE torment (5 seconds, 180 radius). (Cooldown: 5 seconds)
- +650 power, +650 toughness, +932 vitality
With the changes to might coming down the pike, the profession-specific updates this time around will be a bit more focused on the general usability of certain skills, with targeted reductions on outlier skills. You’ll see changes listed below that will make skills more reliable and effective, and in some cases, return them to regular use across PvE, WvW, and PvP.
Drake’s Breath: Burning applied from this skill has been reduced from 3 seconds to 2 seconds per pulse.
- Dev note: Burning time from this skill allowed for extremely long burning durations with a single skill use. This change still allows a long burning duration but requires a little more upkeep to maintain it.
Lightning Whip: The point at which the first and second attacks of Lightning Whip execute have been moved further into the total casting time. The amount of aftercast has been reduced by .2 seconds. To compensate for an increased attack-rate potential, the damage of this skill has been reduced by 10%. When Lightning Whip is used with a Signet of Restoration, the player will only receive healing if the second attack executes.
- Dev note: We’ve been able to clean up Lightning Whip a bit, preventing it from being exploited while rewarding elementalists for completing the attack.
Comet: The radius of this skill has been increased from 120 to 180.
- Dev note: It’s now much easier to land this skill on moving targets!
Shatterstone: The casting time of this skill has been reduced by 22%.
- Dev note: The overall time that the stone takes to shatter remains the same, but you’ll now be able to activate skills a bit sooner.
Dust Devil: The velocity of this skill’s projectile has been increased by 66%.
- Dev note: This is a simple usability improvement that allows this skill to hit more reliably.
Shrapnel Grenade: Bleed duration on this skill has been reduced from 12 seconds to 10 seconds.
- Dev note: This is a small decrease in bleeding duration, as the current duration for all bleeding this applies is a little high.
Throw Mine: The proximity trigger for this skill has been increased from a range of 60 to 120. Additionally, the explosion radius has been increased from 180 to 240.
- Dev note: We want to define the thrown mine a little more and ensure that it has a much more noticeable impact than other mines in the engineer’s arsenal.
Launch Personal Battering Ram: This skill now has a 1 second daze.
- Dev note: The personal battering ram is a gadget that is all about disrupting enemies. This change to the tool-belt skill helps push it toward that role.
Litany of Wrath: The percentage of health returned from this skill has been increased from 20% to 25%. The aftercast of this skill has also been reduced by 0.5 seconds.
- Dev note: In addition to gaining a little more healing from this skill, guardians will be able to use skills much sooner after casting it.
Shield of Judgment: The cooldown on this skill has been reduced from 30 seconds to 25 seconds.
- Dev note: This change is a general usability improvement for the shield overall.
Shield of Absorption: The cooldown on this skill has been reduced from 40 seconds to 30 seconds.
- Dev note: Same as above!
Zealot’s Fire: The increased cooldown component has been removed.
- Dev note: This penalty felt unnecessary and it wasn’t fun.
- Deception: This downed-state skill no longer requires a target in order to cast.
- Dev note: This will allow for mesmers to better use their survival skill when facing an opponent using stealth.
Phantasmal Mage: The illusionary mage summoned by this skill now applies 4 stacks of confusion instead of 3 with their attack. The duration of the confusion has been increased from 3 seconds to 4 seconds. The illusionary mage’s rate of fire has been reduced by 1 second.
- Dev note: This change should improve the overall pressure applied by the mage.
Confusing Images: The duration of confusion from this skill has been increased from 5 seconds to 7 seconds.
- Dev note: This skill is all about confusion, and we feel that if you’re able to successfully land it, enemies should feel the pain!
Time Warp: The cooldown on this skill has been reduced from 210 seconds to 180 seconds.
- Dev note: This is a general usability improvement to give mesmers a better support option for allies.
Illusion of Life: The cooldown on this skill has been reduced from 130 seconds to 120 seconds.
- Dev note: Further improvements in support!
Phantasmal Defender: The cooldown on this skill has been reduced from 30 seconds to 25 seconds.
- Dev note: This reduction should increase survivability a bit by enabling the defender to be active more often.
Locust Swarm: The casting time of this skill has been reduced from 1 second to 0.5 seconds.
- Dev note: This change will give necromancers a bit more mobility.
Corrosive Poison Cloud: The casting time of this skill has been reduced from 1 second to 0.5 seconds. The cooldown on this skill has been reduced from 40 seconds to 30 seconds.
- Dev note: Because this skill has a subtle effect, we wanted to be able to cast it quickly. We also wanted to allow it to be cast more frequently so necromancers can use it for more consistent (though less damaging) area denial.
Signet of the Locust: The cooldown of this skill has been reduced from 60 to 40 seconds. Base healing has been increased by 4%, fixing an issue that caused the Bloodthirst trait to grant 25% bonus healing rather than the 20% intended. The bonus from healing power has been increased by 108% base, 100% when traited with Bloodthirst.
- Dev note: We wanted to reduce the penalty for using the active portion of the skill and also improve the reward for having healing power.
Signet of Undeath: The passive life-force gain of this skill has been increased from 1% to 2%.
- Dev note: While this remains a low amount, we’re looking to provide more options for support when necromancers use this signet.
- Throw Torch: The projectile travel speed of this skill has been increased by 25%.
- Dev note: A little torch love and general usability improvement.
Bonfire: The base area of effect of this skill has been increased from 120 to 180.
- Dev note: Like Throw Torch, we felt this area of effect needed to be a bit bigger so that there’s room to roll around and have a little more area denial.
Hunter’s Call: The casting time of this skill has been reduced from 1.5 seconds to 1 second.
- Dev note: We’re looking at giving a bit more responsiveness to the ranger’s warhorn abilities.
Call of the Wild: The cooldown of this skill has been reduced from 35 seconds to 30 seconds.
- Dev note: Reducing the cooldown of this skill will allow for a bit more frequent support to allies.
Heal as One: The casting time of this skill has been reduced from 1.25 seconds to 1 second.
- Dev note: This change will bring the skill a little more in line with other healing skills with similar potential.
Blinding Power: This skill no longer interrupts your own skills.
- Dev note: We feel that removing the skill-canceling nature of this skill will improve the overall value of the skill and provide better potential for both damage and support.
Dancing Dagger: The projectile speed from this skill has been increased by 33%.
- Dev note: This skill is intended to help thieves catch their enemies, which is pretty hard to do if the daggers are slow.
Needle Trap: The bleed duration of this skill has been increased from 3 seconds to 10 seconds.
- Dev note: As a condition-based trap, we felt that the damage portion was underperforming by quite a bit and could use some help in that area.
Shadow Pursuit: The duration of might granted from this skill has been increased from 5 seconds to 10 seconds.
- Dev note: This trap is quite difficult to use and can be disorienting when activated. As such, we wanted to further reward thieves for using this skill.
Invigorating Precision: The health gain from this trait on a critical strike has been increased from 8% of damage dealt to 15%.
- Dev note: This trait was very hard pressed to return health of much value, so we increased the amount of health rewarded by a significant percentage.
Kill Shot: The casting time of this skill has been reduced from 1.75 seconds to 1.25 seconds.
- Dev note: This skill has traditionally been extremely difficult to land on enemies. Our goal with this change is to make the skill easier to land while leaving all of the indicators in place that a burst skill is going to occur.
Brutal Shot: The casting time of this skill has been reduced from 1 second to 0.5 seconds.
- Dev note: This is a general usability improvement, which will allow for the skill to be cast quickly so warriors can use higher-value skills faster.
Arcing Slice: The damage from this skill has been increased by 10%.
- Dev note: Now that this new skill has had a little bit of play, we feel like it’s possible to give this burst skill a little more damage potential.
Rush: Adjusted the animation and attack radius of this skill to hit much more consistently.
- Dev note: The swinging portion of this skill will now activate much farther away from your target and carry you to them—much like other leap skills behave.