GW2 Feature Build Skill and Balance changes preview
A list of the GW2 skill and balance changes planned for the feature build that will come after the first Living World season ends.
As promised, here is the balance preview for the first feature build that will launch after the first Living World season ends. When reading through these changes please keep in mind the overall scope of the update – rune/sigil and critical damage changes included. The changes listed below are similar to what was mentioned on Ready Up on January 17th.
When posting feedback, please try to abide by the following guidelines:
- Be constructive. Discuss, don’t argue. If you think a change may cause issues, say why and give examples. Try not to argue with others – make your point and then accept that other people may have different points of view.
- Give examples: I had 2000 toughness but still got hit by X target for roughly Y damage.
- Be concise. Our time is limited and we can’t read walls of text because it will prevent us from having the time to read as many posts as possible. Bullet points or numbered lists are very easy for us to read!
- Be specific. “I expect this change to accomplish A, but I think it will actually accomplish B”. The more specific you are, the better we are able to understand where you’re coming from, what type of content you play, and it helps us to understand the context for your feedback.
- Be objective. Keep in mind that just because you may not like something, that doesn’t make it bad. Others may have differing opinions. They may play a different type of content, or they may play a different profession, so be objective and keep in mind – we have to balance the game for EVERYONE, not just you.
- Be respectful. This goes for your fellow community members as well as for devs. Respect the ideas and opinions of others.
- Be mindful of scope. It takes design, development and testing time in order to make a new feature or revise an old one. Keep scope/work/time/resources in mind when you make your suggestions.
- Be mindful of context. Power creep is something we’re trying to avoid. Sometimes a profession may not receive as many increases as other classes. A lot of times, this is because that class is already performing very well in the current state of the game. So keep the overall context/state of the game in mind when giving feedback.
- We’re adding a new stat to the game called ferocity which affects your critical damage multiplier, similarly to how precision affects critical chance.
- All existing percentage critical damage stats on gear and items will be converted into the appropriate amount of ferocity, which will then factor into your critical damage multiplier.
- We expect that in the most extreme power DPS focused builds this change will account for a maximum reduction of about 10% damage.
- This change will not affect PvP, as critical damage is already at a much lower value and item attributes will be adjusted in order to compensate for the changes.
- All sigils now have independent cooldowns, meaning you can use two on-swap sigils, or an on-swap and an on-crit sigil at the same time. You will not, however, be able to use two sigils of the same name at the same time. On-kill sigils that provide attributes, such as Sigil of Corruption, will not be able to be used simultaneously with other attribute modifying on-kill sigils.
- Two-handed weapons can now be slotted with two sigils.
- Sigils will receive a general balance pass to bring them more in line with each other.
- Rune sets will receive a general balance pass to bring them in line with each other. This will increase the amount of viable rune options.
- The bulk of rune set bonuses will be pushed towards the 4th, 5th, and 6th piece bonuses to incentivize using a complete set.
Our changes for the elementalist focus on increasing sustain while maintaining the delicate balance between damage and durability. We achieved this by adding more defensive effects to a few main-hand weapon sets.
- Signet of Restoration: Removed the split on this skill so that the signet passive heal amount will be increased in PvP to match the current PvE amount.
- Armor of Earth: Reduced recharge from 90 seconds to 75 seconds.
- Water Trident: Added 3 seconds of regeneration to up to 5 allies in the radius.
- Burning Speed: This ability now evades attacks.
- Frozen Burst: This ability is now a blast finisher.
We feel that the engineer is in a decent place right now, but we did take this opportunity to scale down a few outlier skills in terms of potency. Net Turret’s immobilize duration has been lowered to reduce the amount of lockdown after a Supply Crate drop, and Poison Grenade’s poison duration has been lowered to account for poison field stacking.
- Net Turret: Decreased the immobilize duration from 3 seconds to 2 seconds on the basic attack.
- Poison Grenade: Reduced the poison duration per pulse from 5 seconds to 3 seconds.
- Box of Nails: Reduced the cast time from 1 second to 3/4 second.
- Box of Piranhas: Reduced the cast time from 1 second to 3/4 second.
- A.E.D.: Reduced the cast time from 1 second to 3/4 second.
We’re continuing to lower the amount of vigor available to all professions, especially from sources with low trait point investments. We’ve also made a few minor adjustments to healing skills to make them more reliable.
- Litany of Wrath: Reduced the cast time from 1 second to 3/4 second.
- Vigorous Precision: Increased the recharge from 5 seconds to 10 seconds.
- Healing Breeze: This ability has been re-scaled so that the guardian receives 50% of the heal near the start of the heal and then heals for 10% for 5 ticks to the caster and up to 5 allies in the cone.
We’re continuing to lower the amount of vigor available to all professions, especially from sources with low trait point investments. Based on your feedback, we decided to revert our proposed change to Deceptive Evasion.
- Critical Infusion: Increased the recharge from 5 seconds to 10 seconds.
- Illusion of Drowning: Changed skill from a multi-hit to a single-hit, increasing damage to compensate.
One of our goals with the past few balance updates has been to add counterplay to various skills that lacked telegraphs. With necromancer, we’re changing the way that Dhuumfire is activated – allowing players the opportunity to react. This will also allow the necromancer to carefully plan their burning application. We’ve also adjusted some values for Minion Master builds based on player feedback.
- Putrid Explosion: This ability is no longer unblockable.
- Training of the Master: Reduced the damage increase to minions from 30% to 25%.
- Dhuumfire: This trait has been changed so that it will make Life Blast inflict 3 seconds of burning with a 10 second recharge.
- Vampiric Master: Reduced the effectiveness of this trait by 10%. The healing portion of this trait will now scale with the necromancer’s healing power stat.
We’re going to be fixing a bug with Spirit of Nature that caused it to have an incorrect healing power value. We’re also looking at adding combo fields to existing abilities to allow for more play through different combo finishers.
- Spirit of Nature: Reduced the healing per second while summoned from 480 to 320.
- Viper’s Nest: This ability is now a poison combo field.
Our changes for warrior focus on providing telegraphs to stronger skills and to reduce the passive benefit gained from Healing Signet.
- Healing Signet: Reduced the passive heal by 8%.
- We’re looking for ways to incentivize using Healing Signet’s active without increasing overall sustain. We’d love to hear your thoughts on this.
- Pin Down: Added a telegraph animation to the skill. Increased the cast time from 1/4 second to 3/4 second.