Forums » Pantheon Classes

Class Mastery

    • 55 posts
    February 23, 2018 1:05 PM PST

    I’ve been lurking on the forums for quite some time now and finally thought I’d bring up something that I always loved in my favorite MMO, EQoA. One of the best things I think EQoA had going for it (among many) was its class mastery system. What this was was a separate way to specialize your character and purchase various stat, health, offense modifier, etc. upgrades and eventually fully specialize your character in to a new branch of your class. It worked like this: as you leveled (or you could wait until later), you were able to specify a percentage of your experience towards earning class mastery points (at max level, 100% of any experience went towards your cm points). The class masteries you could purchase, as mentioned previously, were things like +10 strength, or +25 maximum vitality, etc. But also could be used to purchase things like special racial abilities that would come in handy as you adventure (I played a Halfling and one that comes to mind was the Bake Pie class mastery skill, which allowed you to do just that: bake some pies, which would heal you outside of combat. No more vendor food purchasing!)

    BUT the coolest (in my opinion) class mastery skills was your Master Class and its Master Class abilities. Master classes were only available beginning at level 55 and could only be purchased once certain class mastery requirements were met (including at least 500 cms spent). Your master class was something that made your character a bit more specialized in its class. For example, my enchanter was an Animator. He focused on his summoning of animated pets rather than a Spellbinder, who would focus on charming pets. Or my warrior who was a Hero, which was a focus on damage rather than a Defender who’s focus was tanking. Then, at level 60 you could purchase your master class abilities which were 2 (sometimes 3) cm points that gave more specialized abilities that only your master class had available to it (usually it was 1 actual spell and another passive skill that would increase the stats that benefit your specific master class). In my previous example, my Animator could summon his Grand Animation pet, which only level 60 Animators could summon if they had earned and purchased that ability.

    But this system was great for many reasons. You actually had to earn those cms by experience, which made each of your characters that much more a part of you since you earned those points and you chose exactly what you wanted your class to be. Also, it was a great way to expand the late-game as the maximum cms you could have was 1500, which to most players was an almost unachievable goal (it got a lot easier in EQoA’s later years, as the exp. boosts came out). Thus, even if you weren’t specifically grinding out cms, you always had something that you were earning to make you character better (unless you were at 1500, of course). There were many times I would be farming for money and I would earn cms as I went. Or when you were helping a guildmate farm their epic quest item, you were earning points for your character too. I just thought it was a cool system that always gave me something to do regardless if I already had the best gear and spells for my character.

    In all that, what are your thoughts on a system like this for Pantheon? Do you think it would bring more life to the game as it did for EQOA? Let me know what you think!

     

    edited to add some spacing for easier reading


    This post was edited by Neyos at February 23, 2018 2:19 PM PST
    • 820 posts
    February 23, 2018 3:52 PM PST

    This sounds suspiciously like AA - but I never played EQOA. 

    • 2571 posts
    February 23, 2018 4:38 PM PST

    This sounds like a combination of class specializations and alternate advancement points. I am not a fan of either personally, as to me I choose my specialization when I pick my class while I make my character. If I roll a shaman then I picked the shaman specialization of Healer. I really dislike when games split the classes into different branches down the line; if I want to be a shaman then I want that class to have it's own full identity not be fractured into different kinds of shaman down the road, and I don't think the vast majority of players ever really want to level the same class twice (or more) to have full access to a class they enjoy.

     

    As for Alternate Advancement (lets be honest, it should just be called Necessary/Required Advancement) type stuff... It can be nice to have extra ways to have character progression but it comes at too high of a cost to me. In relatively short time it becomes a very unpleasant gate to high/max level content. It also interferes with tuning content to acceptable difficulty levels since with AAs you never really know where all of your players are sitting power-wise; its far easier to produce content that will pose a challenge without outlier players being able to sweep the floor with it when you can weigh all classes/players at max level evenly.

     

    But I'm not one who needs an endless treadmill for a character. The end is going to come at some point where you reach max progression on a character and if it takes the average player 6 months to hit max level and another few months to get fully geared out/see all the raids/dungeons for max level, then personally I'd consider that a damned fine run. 8+ months of entertainment per character, more with expansions/added levels. 

    • 1 posts
    February 24, 2018 4:51 PM PST

    I played EQ/EQ2/EQOA, I like the AA in EQ, hated the AA in EQ2, but liked the EQOA CM system as well. I don't like to be limited, I pick a class and that is what I am, the AA and CM gave me not only my class but also MORE options, you didn't have to use them, at max lvl you would get the points but no one would make you use them. The best about EQOA is not only the fact that you had the CM for your class but other options as well, like a ranger had the ranger specific ones for class but also the scout ones as well (like bravo i believe it was called). I felt it gave each character "more" options then just here is your character, its a cookie cutter, your just like everyone else that plays the class. Most MMO's are like that, even if they have same AA/CM/etc./etc. they are just cookie cutter classes. Examples would be WOW/LOTRO/SWTOR all have options to expand your class but really only 1 line is viable rest are garbage. Also EQOA gave other options then just class specific ones, could get lycan's as well, werewolf, weretiger/weregator/etc. even were hunter. Some people might feel those where just stupid but I still feel it gave even more options to your character (weretiger necromancer).

    • 3361 posts
    February 24, 2018 6:48 PM PST

    EQOA also allowed you to pick a racial master class which I thought was super cool.

  • Wig
    • 217 posts
    February 25, 2018 5:35 AM PST
    I personally loved class mastery. So many options to choose from within it. Allowed for further customization and theory crafting. Most of the class masteries tilted your character to either more damage/support, or healing/support. Once you acquire the prerequisite CMs needed, you could buy your new class title which came with 2 new abilities unique to that CM.
    • 2662 posts
    February 25, 2018 8:23 AM PST

    I would like almost any system that lets you specialize so that every player of a particular class isn't the same as every other player.

    Three important caveats.

    1. The system should most definitely not allow a character to have multiple roles in a group. It should allow the character a choice of different ways to play one role.

    2. No specialization should be self-evidently better than the other(s) under almost every circumstance. Being good or being crappy is not a real choice to most of us.

    3. Choices should have meaning. A specialization selection should either be permanent or something that is difficult or expensive to reverse and if the latter only reversible once, or at least with a long cooldown.

    I see a system like this as more like the choice of sub-classes at level 20 in EQ2 before they did away with that rather than an AA type system but as noted above almost any approach works for me as long as points 1 and 2 above are honored and ideally 3 as well/

    • Moderator
    • 8762 posts
    February 25, 2018 3:28 PM PST

    Moved to Pantheon Classes to keep it consolidated and in specific areas for information gathering. General Pantheon is a place to post when there are no other subforums that cover the topic, that is if it is not Off-Topic related.

    • 70 posts
    February 27, 2018 11:39 AM PST

    I personally loved the AA system in EQ1, and frankly I think this one feature is one of major things I attribute it's longevity to.  Even after you've explored everywhere and hit max level, there was always more to do.  There was never 'an end'.  I every other MMO I have ever played, whenever I hit max level and had completed all the available raids / instances I always felt like there was nothing left to do but grind dailies and/or faction questions for some 'shiny'.  At least with AA's I always felt that no matter what I was doing there was 'continous benefit' and purpose.  I actually liked adventuring in areas that I'd already been that were just 'cool'.  But in newer games, once you are max level and there are no factions/dailies there, why bother?  Always seemed like such a waste of a zone / area to me.

     

    Plus the AA's themselves while not game breaking advantages, over time really added up to be a big difference for your character.  Plus it gave you a really cool way to pick and choose what was important to your personal play style and make character choices that mattered.

  • Wig
    • 217 posts
    February 27, 2018 3:25 PM PST
    ^This.

    I’ve always been a 1 character kinda guy. So, anything to allow me to continue playing that character I love works for me.
    • 55 posts
    March 12, 2018 9:50 AM PDT

    dorotea said:

    I would like almost any system that lets you specialize so that every player of a particular class isn't the same as every other player.

    Three important caveats.

    1. The system should most definitely not allow a character to have multiple roles in a group. It should allow the character a choice of different ways to play one role.

    2. No specialization should be self-evidently better than the other(s) under almost every circumstance. Being good or being crappy is not a real choice to most of us.

    3. Choices should have meaning. A specialization selection should either be permanent or something that is difficult or expensive to reverse and if the latter only reversible once, or at least with a long cooldown.

    I see a system like this as more like the choice of sub-classes at level 20 in EQ2 before they did away with that rather than an AA type system but as noted above almost any approach works for me as long as points 1 and 2 above are honored and ideally 3 as well/

    To answer you caveats with this sytem in mind, here are my thoughts:

    1. The class mastery system and therefore, the master classes, never really pushed your character beyond it's original role. It just allowed your character to fulfill your role in a different way. For example, my shaman was still a shaman late game. Had all the same shaman abilities that every other shaman got EXCEPT when I chose my Elder Master class. I received a different heal and buff that was , yes different, than the Mystic master class abilities, but the Mystic master class abilities were different than mine. It really did just specialize your character in to a more specific role, but never took you out of your overall healing/damage/tank role. Hope that makes sense

    2. I think the balance in the later years of EQOA was pretty good considering all the master classes available to each character. So I won't say that there weren't master classes that were better than others or more "meta," because there was, but I still felt like everyone was viable in most aspects of the game regardless of their chosen master class.

    3. Absolutely agree. And at first, you could not reverse your master class at all unless you deleted the CMs! Then, there was a very rare item that you could farm that would reset your cms and stats. It was called Rose of Renewal. Eventually, towards the end of EQOA's life, they allowed players to "respec" their cms and stats for free at a NPC, which I think has advantages and disadvantages. I believe they did that because the community was getting smaller, and it allowed players to more easily fill a role when there wasn't anyone available to fill it. 


    This post was edited by Neyos at March 12, 2018 9:52 AM PDT