Forums » Pantheon Classes

Utility Spells: What effects? And for which class(es)?

    • 2031 posts
    December 21, 2015 11:03 AM PST

    I didn't want to start a General Discussion thread on this, and there isn't a specific spell forum either so I'm putting it here because it is all about classes.

    I'd like to hear people's ideas about utility spells, those spells which aren't necessarily combat related and are outside what I'd describe as the core spells for a class.  I'm a firm believer that the game is fuller and far richer in scope when the number of utility spells is quite large.

    So what utility spells do we want to see and, most importantly, which class (or classes) should have these spells?  Should these spells have (consumable/non-consumable) reagents?  If so, what items?  Long durations or short?  Predictable durations or random?  Can the effect be dispelled?  Why might we need the particular spel(s) you want to see?

     

    I'll start.

    • Shrink.  Reduces the size* of your target.   Class:  Shaman.  Reagent:  A Tiny Doll (player made, stackable, consumed on casting). Fixed duration of 30 minutes per level. Dispellable.
    • Grow.  Increases size* of your target.  Class:  Shaman, Druid.  Reagent:  A Magnifying Glass (player made, non-consumed).  Fixed uration of 30 minutes per level.  Dispellable.

     

    I can imagine areas where the inhabitants are either vastly larger than Ogres or slightly smaller than Gnomes/Halflings.  A Giant fortress which has giant sized steps, doors and whatnot might be obstacles a Gnome could not get over.  Grow them and those impediments go away.  By the same nature an Ogre would find it impossible to adventure through some Goblin warren unless he was shrunk small enough to fit into the tunnels.

    *Size.  Assuming Ogres are the largest race and not wanting to cause major issues with making characters too small or too big with the spells, I'd limit the shrink size to 75% that of the smallest player race to 110% of the largest race.  You could grow a Gnome to be larger than an Ogre and shrink that Ogre to be smaller than a Gnome.

    • 624 posts
    December 21, 2015 12:09 PM PST

    I totally agree that more utility spells make for a fun game, not every spell needs to have a combat or "serious" purpose :)

    There were some great utility spells in Ultima IX and Ultima Online. From Ultima IX for example:

    - ignite/douse (a fire, candle, torch..)

    - light (summons a small sphere of light that follows you around)

    - fog (summons fog around the caster...in EQ terms it might reduce aggro range perhaps? Imagine this could have a nice spell effect :)

    - telekinesis (move small objects around, like a lever)

    - teleport (short distance, destination must be in sight)

    List of UIX spells here.

    Ultima Online had some nice ones as well:

    - magic (un)lock (could be an alternative to having a rogue around for lockpicking)

    - wall of stone (keep enemies away for a moment)

    - incognito (gives you a random appearance/clothing)

    Full list of spells here.

     

    EQ/Pantheon classes will of course be much more specialized/focused than the UO/UIX mages. Some of the spells above would naturally go to specific classes, for example teleport would be a wizard thing, while the summoner might get the fog spell. I would like all caster classes to get access to a magic unlock spell (as an alternative to having a rogue). That spell should definitely have a reagent cost, or rogues would be disadvantaged (as they have to buy lockpicks). Incognito would be a great thing for illusionist/enchanter. Stuff like the summoned light or ignite should be for all casters, since its just a nice touch to feel as a "real" caster :)

    • 258 posts
    December 29, 2015 8:22 AM PST

    Great ideas here.  I really like having more non-combat utility spells like Shrink, Grow, Levitate, Illusions (with faction modifiers), etc.  We had quite a few of these in both UO and EQ, but recent MMO's have moved away from these spells, focusing singularly on combat abilities.

     

    The "vision" line of spells from EQ can probably be brought back.  I'd like to see:

    - Ultravision:  Provides better vision in low-light dungeons.  Counters "darkness" debuff.

    - Heat Vision:  Allows user to see heat signatures of enemies through walls or obstacles.  Useful for pulling or seeing if there are enemies behind a door.

    - Eagle Vision:  Allows for telescopic vision.  Where others may need to use a physical telescope, the savvy spell caster only needs this spell.

    - Detect Traps:  Allows caster to detect traps.

    - See Invisibility:  Allows caster to see invisibile living creatures.

    - See Invisibility vs Undead:  Allows caster to see invisible undead creatures.

     

    I also agree that some spells should be shared across multiple classes (i.e. summon lightstone, root, invis, etc)

    • 25 posts
    March 15, 2016 5:28 PM PDT

    When I think about my experience first playing EverQuest, the thing that stands out to me personally are these sorts of spells. Something has absolutely been lost in the modern MMO where every ability exists solely to facilitate combat. Even in the many 'sandbox' games I've played in the intervening years, I've always been under the impression that the sandbox elements existed in some of the economical gameplay but not necessarily as much in the adventure. 

    That is where EQ truly succeeded for me, and where I desperately hope Pantheon will follow suit. My class was more than just what I could accomplish in combat, it had definitive effects in how I interacted with the world around me. I had tools to live out the fantasy of playing my chosen class not just because of how I destroyed my enemies, but because I could alter my reputation with the many factions at a whim, or conjure fun utility items for newbies, or tear open a rift in spacetime to traverse immense and perilous distances.

    This is in my personal opinion one of the biggest missed boats of post-EQ MMOs that truly limits player freedom not only in options for gameplay beyond combat, but in how they ultimately tackle any given challenge in the game (but hey, it's all easier to "balance" when they can funnel us all down the same path right?).

    My personal wishlist for utility? In no particular order...

    1. Invisibility / 'Stealth' spells: Cheesy in some cases yes, but nothing a good peppering of see-invis enemies never solved. Oh and please make invis'd players invisible to ANYONE, PCs or NPCs, lacking see-invis! Lost a great roleplaying tool once it turned into an NPC-only spell and PCs always say invis players with just parentheses around the name.
      1. Sidenote: There were some even more interesting iterations of this on display in FFXI, where you had enemies that could detect based on sight (usually only in front of them, too), sound, or smell, and appropriate spells to counter that. And then some enemies that aggro'd based on low HP or spellcasting...good luck refreshing that invis in that zone full of sight-aggro, magic-aggro mobs!
    2. Illusions: Particularly the sort with faction, racial ability, and/or buff modifiers. Amazing RP tool, and facilitated some fantastic quests. Stein of Moggok anyone?
    3. Vision modifiers: Especially with a dark night. Sure you can carry around a latern, but it doesn't hurt to ask a friendly caster for some serpentsight either. This would also include something like bind sight.
    4. Conjured goods: Food and drink were invaluable, as were lightstones and things like enduring breath stones or levitate rings. Made for some great ways to interact with newbies, too, and play that role of traveling magician.
    5. Environmental/Exploration utilities: Levitate and enduring breath were the staples in EQ, but would love to see this expanded with things such as waterwalking, 'sink' spells, perhaps even wall/ceiling walking.
    6. Bind Affinity. I really miss that ability to define my spawn point beyond some pre-set locales - and to be able to provide that service to lower levels and non-casters. It was also really neat pairing this with the Timorous Deep portal room. One thing that might be worth exploring in keeping some of the old punishing death mechanics, but perhaps making them a little friendlier to an older, more time-constrained crowd, is to enable the caster of the original bind to recall their party member to that point, sort of like a poor-man's rez without the exp buff.

    Of course with newer technologies, there's immensely expanded potential for even more concepts. For example the creation of collision-detecting objects, akin to the cleric's special ability but perhaps used to fashion bridges over chasms (perhaps channeled too, leaving the caster dependant on a friend to provide the same service?). Or perhaps creating a two-way portal akin to WoW's Demonic Gateway, only without the combat-centric 3 minute cooldown on re-use. But certainly, at the core, some means of interacting with the world and its NPCs through our class-specific toolsets that doesn't revolve around how efficiently we can kill them.


    This post was edited by AstralEcho at March 15, 2016 5:29 PM PDT
    • 624 posts
    March 16, 2016 12:56 AM PDT

    AstralEcho said:Environmental/Exploration utilities: Levitate and enduring breath were the staples in EQ, but would love to see this expanded with things such as waterwalking, 'sink' spells, perhaps even wall/ceiling walking.

    VG had this quest for super jump boots...just give me something like that again :)

    • 377 posts
    March 16, 2016 6:40 AM PDT

    Good thread! And how unsurprising that most posts miror one another :)

    Would be awesome if so many staples of what used to be RPGs could make their way back.. fully in agreement with @AstralEcho, not everything should be focused around combat; further ways to interact with both the environment and other players are just as important. I hope VR eventually manages to bring at least some of those in Patnehon (i understand it may not be a top priority). Your character feels so much more 'fleshed out' when so.. It's a bad joke when 5 or 50 skills on your hotbar, not a one is usable outside combat. A shallow one.

    [generally my complaint, MMOs = pewpew or log out, but that's a different story]

    I don't have anything to add, would be ecstatic if all your suggestions made it as they stand. If however i may add, albeit potentially/semi out-of-topic; speaking of VGSoH, anyone happens to know if the 'stop XP' utility will be making its way back?

    edit: /nod at Vandraad for the shrinking utility (recalling our Ogres' size conversation) ^^


    This post was edited by Aenra at March 16, 2016 6:42 AM PDT
    • 260 posts
    March 16, 2016 9:40 AM PDT

    This thread reminds me of my old school MUDDING days. I wanted to share some of the utility skills/abilities/spells in the MUD I played. These are just a few for several of the classes.

     

    Mage = See Invis (I know this has been mentioned) This helped a ton. NPC's could be rogues lying in wait (stealthed) to backstab you. See invis kept you from being backstabbed.

    Mage = Portal. You could open a one way portal to anyone in game. Unless the zone/room was !No Port.

    Cleric = Ward Undead. This kept undead from aggro'ing you as soon as you entered a room. (Could be used like the FOG spell mentioned above but for undead only)

    Cleric = Summon. Clerics where able to summon others to them. (only worked if the room/zone wasnt !No Port)

    Cleric = Remove Curse (I forget the actual spell name) There were cursed items in the game and the cleric could remove those curses so players could use them without penalty. This was a cool idea. Some of the best gear in the game had curses attached to it and either a cleric or a very expensive item was required to remove the curse. The curse was removed from the item until you logged out. I remember before every group got going those that had them would have me cast this spell so all the group members could use their best weapons. (Not all best weapons were cursed)

    Necro = Undead realm walking (Again forget this spell name). It allowed the necro to enter a realm outside of the world where there were 100's of portals the necro could use to transport himself to other places of the world. The portals had to be mapped and memorized in order to use this skill right. Or else you would end up in Hell and be killed. Can someone say CORPSE RUNS !! The only way to tell what portal you entered was right was from a very simple description of what was on the other side. Only the best Necro's I knew used this well.

    Necro = Corpse finder (Again i forget the exact name of this spell) This allowed the necro (hopefully you had a necro friend) to track your corpse if you may have forgotten where you died. 

     

    This is just some of the ones I remember being a blast to work with. All classes had very specific utility that really helped not only themselves but all of us. I sure hope this is the case in Pantheon.

    Shrink and Grow

    I really like that idea. I remember in the MUD I played that in certain zones/areas you had to be shrunk in order to enter and move around. This was always fun when the effect ended. You couldn't move at all. Mages had the spell called Shrink (I forgot this one uptop). Or you could eat a magic Blue Mushroom.

     

    On a complete side note. In the MUD I played your first spells/skills came by way of level. After a certain level you had to venture into the world to obtain your higher level skills/spells from trainers or books deep in dungeons or perched high in the mountains. That was a blast. Really defined classes since we all had to travel into different areas and help eachother attain our skills.Yes some of them could be attained solo but it was difficult to do so. It sounds like Pantheon is set to do this and I for one am so gleefully excited!!!!!

     

    Pyde Pyper

     

     

     

    • 254 posts
    March 16, 2016 11:45 AM PDT

    Has there been any mention of combing spell or abilities to create combination type of event? Like say, shooting an arrow through a flamewall to create a flaming arrow or casting a mirror effect on a torch to light up more of an dungeon, like an AoE type of spell... that sort of thing?

    I remember having some type of mechanic like that in EQ2 in the beginning; being able to combine and multiply differect class abilities while fighting to culminate into a great effect, which I thought was rather neat and inventive.

    I'd like to see something like that come along, I imagine I could come up with a lot of varying ways to combine effects myself :)


    This post was edited by Nuemcy at March 16, 2016 11:46 AM PDT
    • 18 posts
    June 29, 2016 7:18 PM PDT

    I know they did not say if u will have to get corpses or not yet but if they do Summon corpse was a great spell in EQ. I also love SoW "spirit of wolf" one of they spells that helped alot when i first played eq and ports for dru and wiz was nice also. Mag could summon food/water and alot of other cool toys. See invis was a must for pullers. I also loved the levitate.

    I would love to see spells like these. Each one helps in there own way.

    • 2016 posts
    June 30, 2016 6:40 AM PDT
    I think these are all great. Ill add in waterbreathing and increase movement speed.
    • 500 posts
    June 30, 2016 8:22 PM PDT

    I'm partial to melee, can anyone come up with some neat things a Warrior, Rogue, Monk, Crusader or Dire Lord can do?

     

    Biggest issue would be not stepping on other toes. I suck at this but i'll try to random some **** up. 

    Crusader: Sense undead

    Dire Lord: Sense fae

    Monk: Something to do with not needing to eat or drink as often

    Rogue: Cloak of Shadows-- Gain reduced threat radius at night

     

    Again i'm horrible at this. Could use some help lol.

     

    -Todd

    • 516 posts
    August 9, 2016 5:22 PM PDT

    NOTHING can possibly beat the EQ Enchanter for the use of utility spells.

     

    SELLING KEI AT THE BANK!