Forums » Pantheon Classes

Personal Environments (theorycrafting)

    • 1286 posts
    February 27, 2017 1:55 PM PST

    For this theorycrafting exercise, presume the references at the end are generally true, with the obvious caveat it may not apply to Pantheon exactly.

    Overall Idea: Personal Environments, (or Character Environments, or Player Environments, or Role Environments, or Class Environments). The basic concept is, there is a persistent radius aura, circle, volumetric cylinder, or bubble around your character, that, when active, generates a variety of effects that interact with the game world, NPCs, PCs, NPC/World Environments and PC Environments.

    Context: So far, we've seen Environments that need to be dealt with, in Pantheon. A simple example is the dark purple Environment shown in several of the videos to date. It is apparently a very powerful DoT field at the intended level that will kill a group or player within 30 seconds of exposure. Taking this idea and considering it further, I came up with the following. (Those familiar with the concept of totems or Rift Raid Banners can use those as a starting mental model, similarly: as a basis )

    Each character, role, or class offers their own Environment to their group as a benefit. The effects of these benefits are discussed below. Everyone gets one. They can be selected based on decisions, lore, quests, items, buffs, or gear. They can be more or less effective based on location, aspects and sympathetic interaction with other Environments from other group members.
    The risk to the player is the maintenance/cost of the Environment. The reward to the player is the benefit offered by the Environment.

    The aspects of the Player Environment that can be adjusted are: Radius, Stability, Mobility, Appearance, Type, Power, Cost, and Effect.

    Radius is pretty straightforward. Initially maybe only 1-3 meters, expanding to 10-50 meters max?

    Stability is affected by radius and the number of affected targets in the Environment. The larger the Environment the less stable, if there are a larger number of targets within, and the Environment is mobile. Temporarily fixed position Environments are more stable, and can affect more targets before become unstable. If the stability threshold of a Player Environment is exceeded, within a short time, the PE will collapse, and the resource pool will be lost, and/or the caster will be harmed or negatively affected in some way, temporarily.

    Mobility; An environment can be in a temporary fixed position (sticking your totem or marker in/on the ground or in 3d space) or simply move with the character. Some could be placed on a creature as their temporary fixed position, from a distance. The interval that they could be moved at could be affected by a few factors, perhaps you can move the Environment once per minute(x minutes?), without losing the maintenance cost if the movement is within say 50m - 100m of the previous location that was active for at least one minute. Tunable, to be sure.

    Appearance; Could be customizable within a range, could be set based on type, could be based on resistance check. Could be arbitrarily selected by the player from a range of colors, for limits or tinting.

    Type; The resistance check for the effect if detrimental could be based on damage types and/or Environment types that have been revealed thus far (Frigid, Scorching, Anaerobic, Wind Shear, Toxic, and Pressure) or Environment types that counter those revealed thus far.

    Power; Customizable as with spells & skills. Upgradeable via levels, quests, lore, etc. More damage. Longer CC. Harder to resist. It may be desirable to have Power, Radius, and Stability be a triangle of risk. In order to get all three to their maximum, this would require significant time investment.

    Cost; a fixed amount or a fixed percentage. 10%, 20%, 50%, from a resource pool, persistently. Resource pools being, mana, endurance, or health. Temporary and fixed position Environments could have any kind of cost (monetary, tradeskills). Think of them as Environment grenades. Frequency/shared timers as a balance.

    Effect; Any of the following.. Role effects (tank, heal, cc, damage) as well as:
    Harmful/Negative Effects - Direct Damage , Damage Over Time, Snare, Slow, Silence, Disarm, Blind/Searing Light, Darkness , Debuff: Stat ,Debuff: Resistance ,Debuff: Skill, Remove Buff, Knockdown, Lifetap/Powertap, Harmshield
    Crowd Control - Root, Paralyze, Mesmerize, Sleep, Stun, Interrupt, Fear, Confusion
    Positive Effects: (Heals/Buffs/Procs), HoT, Mana Regen, Endurance Regen, Heal-on-Attack, Haste, Resist buff, Stat Buff, Skill buff, Stun immunity.

    Now, a design goal of such a system would be to encourage players to either use the appropriate Player Environment to counter the Environmental effects in the content they're consuming, or in some way increase the groups overall power such that consuming that content was more fun, social and/or more efficient.

    Implementation Example 1:
    A Wizard activates a planar breach PE using two spells The first is the breach spell, the second is an ice AOE. The environment within is Frigid to all enemies. The environment is fixed in location, can contain 4 creatures before becoming unstable, has a 4 meter radius, and reduces the Wizards mana pool by 25% as long as it is active. The group pulls fire lizards to this PE, and a variety of effects are in play. A cold damage proc is added as a buff to ally melee in the PE. All cold/ice base spells do 10% more damage to all targets within the PE.
    If placed adjacent to a Druid "Ice Fog" PE, a snare is applied to all creatures within, as well as a chance to knockdown and/or make enemies frozen (paralyzed/prone). Stability is increased to 5 creatures before becoming unstable, where the PE's overlap.
    If placed adjacent to a Summoner "Dimensional Breach", dumbfire elemental ice pets will be summoned forth over time that will attack all enemies within the breach. These dumbfire pets will die if hit, but will continuously appear at a fixed rate. (perhaps one pet every 20 seconds up to 3 pets maximum.)
    Once the Wizard PE has been active for at least one minute, it can be moved up to 100m away before disappearing if moved in under 30 seconds. (pet follow, pet stay) Stability is further increased to 6 creatures before becoming unstable, where the three PE's overlap.

    Implementation Example 2:
    A cleric activates a ward using two spells. The first is the ward, the second is a Yaulp-like spell. After this, any ally who enters the field is pulsed with the Yaulp buff at a fixed interval. This reduces the Clerics mana pool by 15% while the PE is active.
    If placed next to a Warriors banner, this PE will increase the groups AC by a fixed amount & weapon skill of the weapon the Warrior currently wields by 10%, and reduces the Warriors endurance pool by 10%.
    If placed next to a Paladins pennant, this PE will grant an increase of the Dodge skill by a fixed amount & increase magic, poison and disease resistance of 20% to all allies within, while reducing the Paladins health pool by 5%.

    Implementation Example 3:
    An Enchanter activates a PE Cloud of Fascination that pulses an AE mez for a 3m radius, and is stable for up to 2 targets. If the Enchanter stands within the field, the stability limit is increased to 3. This costs the Enchanter 30% of their mana pool.
    A monk activates a PE aura of light, blinding all enemies that enter it, centered on themselves, and moving with them. This reduces their endurance pool to half. This aura will remain stable with 2 enemies within. When the Monk moves within the Enchanters Cloud of Fascination, it increases the radius of the Cloud of Fascination to 5m and the Monk aura will remain stable with 3 enemies within. Blinded enemies gain the confused state and may randomly attack their own allies.
    A shaman drops a totem within the Cloud of Fascination, which pulses a Poison based DoT & Attack Speed slow on all enemies within. This reduces the health Pool of the Shaman by 25%. When the shaman channels mana toward the PE, the DoT increases in damage & duration, and the attack speed slow increases in duration.

    Implementation Example 4:
    A Dire Lord creates a Dread Mist PE which reduces his endurance and mana pools by half. All common & weak sentient creatures entering the Mist are either terrified (confused, paralyzed, or prone) or snared & DoT'd. If the Dire Lord focuses mana on the pool, the effects are amplified. If the Dire Lord focuses endurance on the PE, the radius is increased. By default, sentient creatures, if they perceive this PE, will not enter it.
    A Rogue generates a Shrouded PE that when overlapping, conceals the Dread Mist so it is invisible to sentient creatures until they are within it. This reduces the endurance pool of the Rogue by 15%. If the Rogue concentrates/drains endurance on the Shrouded PE, all Allies gain a 1 minute proc buff of the same Damage category poison the Rogue is currently using.
    A ranger generates a Hunting Ground 'Mark' PE on the first creature the Dire Lord is fighting that enters the Dread Mist, which creates a ground target AE glyph that increases all melee damage to all targets within by 5%. This reduces the mana pool of the ranger by 20%. If the Ranger focuses/drains more mana on their PE, it also increasee all non-melee damage to all targets within by 10%.

    Optional: If the PE owner is within the environment radius, it is more powerful, has a larger radius, and/or can go beyond it's stability limits.
    Optional: If the PE owner is outside the environment radius, the effects within are more powerful. (depends on class/role/design goals)
    Optional: The PE owner can sacrifice a larger amount of their resource pool, at cast time, to increase the effect of a PE persistently. Further, they may gain the ability to dynamically adjust this value without regenerating the PE.
    Optional: PE owners can channel/focus/concentrate on a PE to amplify it's effects, while doing -nothing- else, but this drains a resource pool (mana/end/health) for the duration of the channel.
    Optional: Very _perceptive_ enemies will avoid particular or all player environments. Certain PE's may be invisible to certain creature types. Certain classes may be able to hide PE's from certain creatures, as their PE ability (Rogue stealth, for example).
    Optional: Very unperceptive enemies will blindly enter any and all PE's (animals, constructs, insects, brainless)
    Optional: It may be desirable to have an option whereby particular player classes can collapse Player Environments intentionally, causing powerful AOE damage, debuffs or negative effects to all within and nearby, possibly including other players.
    Optional: If desired, PE's may only enhance damage of other classes damage / role effects, to require group play to see value from PE's.

    While it's clear such a system will require many iterations of balancing, it would be, as far as I know, innovative in the genre. It could also be added at any time in the future. A much simpler system could be implied that is based on roles rather than classes or damage types, and only uses one resource pool. However, if I were a designer, I would love working on such a system, because via such a system, social co-operative group play and Player Versus Environment could truly come to life.  You could also design zones and encounters that require certain roles to co-operate in a specific way to encourage success.

    Classes (by Role: Tank, Heals, CC, DPS)
    Tanks: Paladin, Warrior, Dire Lord
    Heals: Shaman, Druid, Cleric
    CC: Enchanter, Summoner, Wizard
    DPS: Ranger, Rogue, Monk

    Classes (By damage type)
    Fire - Wizard, Summoner, Druid, Ranger
    Ice - Wizard, Druid
    Lighting / Magic / Electricity - Enchanter, Wizard, Druid
    Poison - Dire Lord, Shaman, Rogue
    Disease - Dire Lord, Shaman
    Divine - Cleric, Paladin
    Blunt Melee - Monk, Rogue, Warrior, Paladin, Dire Lord
    Piercing Melee - Rogue, Warrior, Paladin
    Slashing Melee - Ranger, Rogue, Warrior, Dire Lord

    Or Damage Type by classes:
    Paladin: divine, blunt, pierce
    Warrior: blunt, slash, pierce
    Dire Lord: blunt, slash, poison, disease
    Ranger: slash, pierce, fire
    Rogue: blunt, slash, pierce, poison
    Monk: blunt, divine/elemental
    Summoner: fire, magic
    Enchanter: magic
    Wizard: fire, ice, magic
    Druid: fire, ice
    Shaman: poison, disease
    Cleric: divine, blunt

    (potential appearances / names for Player Environments)
    Paladin: Pennant
    Warrior: Banner
    Dire Lord: Mist
    Ranger: Mark
    Rogue: Shadow
    Monk: Aura (Elemental, Light/Dark)
    Summoner: Dimensional Rift
    Enchanter: Cloud
    Wizard: Planar Breach
    Druid: Fog
    Shaman: Totem
    Cleric: Ward


    • 105 posts
    February 27, 2017 4:15 PM PST

    Holy monkey balls. Vjek, this is one of the most well thought out original magic designs I've seen. This is pretty amazing, and something that would be super fun to play with, particularly at the beginning when experimentation to discover the various blended effects (those effects that happen when more than one PE is actiave), before they're all discovered and put up on some wiki. Not to mention how it would all play together in the world environments. This is a most epic idea.

    • 1286 posts
    February 28, 2017 7:10 AM PST

    I was pretty stoked when I was working through the details.  I think it would be incredibly fun, and to your point, depending on design goals, you could vary the 'PE blending' (I like that term) by zone if desired, for unique effects.  That would require considerably more work, but I think it would be within the realm of reasonable for this dev team.

    Thanks for the feedback, I appreciate it.

    This post was edited by vjek at February 28, 2017 7:10 AM PST
    • 3361 posts
    December 4, 2017 8:43 AM PST

    This thread is a hidden gem.  I really, really like the idea.  Bravo.

    • 67 posts
    February 20, 2018 11:45 AM PST

    It's too good of an idea. It needs it's own game, putting this in Pantheon would just dilute the Environment system. It's too mechanically complex to fit into the current system. It would be really interesting, don't get me wrong. It should definitely be it's own game. But I think adding it to this game would be a mistake.

    • 800 posts
    February 20, 2018 12:20 PM PST

    This could be something implemented in a future expansion perhaps!  This would definitely add another cool layer of player interaction and a way to make all classes desired for your party at some point throughout your game experience.