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Going Forward: Battle Disciplines for Guardian, Agent, and Servile?


Genernumlover
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I'm a fan of the combat classes, particularly the Guardian and the Servile. With that in mind, I believe that melee combat was overpowered in the first two games and it was better balanced in the later Geneforge games. But now, in the remakes, most combat skills are pretty mediocre for the main character. A Shaper is much more powerful due to the new creation skills. Battle Creations can generally outperform melee characters and ranged creations can exceed most batons. Going forward, with the more powerful creation types still to come, and stun, slow, poison, and acid being present on most of the endgame enemies, the partially combat classes are going to continue to struggle to keep up with Shapers and Lifecrafters.

 

I think Jeff should bring Avernum's Battle Disciplines into the Geneforge world for all classes that rely partially on combat skills. It will liven up the gameplay from "Shoot it, fireball it, or walk up to it and whack it" to a more strategic approach with weapon-based ranged and melee combat, and it would allow Guardians, Agents, Warriors, Shock Troopers, and Serviles to compete with Shapers and Lifecrafters without nerfing the creation skills or returning to the overpowered melee combat of Geneforge 1 and 2.

 

 

Edited by Genernumlover
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17 hours ago, Genernumlover said:

I'm a fan of the combat classes, particularly the Guardian and the Servile. With that in mind, I believe that melee combat was overpowered in the first two games and it was better balanced in the later Geneforge games. But now, in the remakes, most combat skills are pretty mediocre for the main character. A Shaper is much more powerful due to the new creation skills.

 

The mechanics behind creations and creation levels were so incredibly strong in G1-3 that Shapers blew every other class out of the water completely.  This is definitely not something new in the remakes.

 

In OG1, Agents didn't have most of their good spells yet, and while Guardians had good damage output, they completely lacked Parry, leaving them quite vulnerable -- especially since enemy melee damage was also very high (d8 vs later d4-5).  Guardians were especially challenging to play on higher difficulty settings.

 

In OG2, Guardians were very strong because Parry was borderline broken, but Shapers were still incredibly strong, and still put out more DPS than Guardians.

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Jeff made the game for Shapers and wanted any player class to use Shaping of creations.

 

Guardians are still tough enough even on torment difficulty to get through the game. You can play both the original and current version without even needing a sword, by just punching creations with a fist in melee. So it's more of player tactics making the difference.

 

Agents were always overpowered, although Jeff eliminated some exploits from the original version.

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Agents get to use spells for range attacks so they don't need to hunt for ammunition and can do area effect attacks to deal with swarms.  They have lower costs for training in buffing spells to keep them having extra damage, defense, and action s. They have lower cost to gain levels in daze and chamr, spells to reduce attacks from the enemy.

 

In the original game they could more easily exploit moving in and out of attack range in the round to deal damage and avoid it

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Agents were by far the most challenging class to play in OG1.  Seriously, go back and remind yourself of all the limitations we've forgotten about: a sharply limited spell list (12 spells) that included no crowd control whatsoever, and no daze spell whatsoever; and an inventory sharply limited by Strength, an otherwise useless stat for a firebolt-slinging agent.  Exploiting enemy AI limitations was something they were forced into -- not a bonus.

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Agents are pretty good in Mutagen, by my estimation after playing each class on Torment. When you account for the Tombs bonuses, they actually end up with equal or greater points in every stat/skill compared to the Shaper other than Essence Mastery, which Shaper wins by 1 point. They also have a 1.3x hp multiplier which also makes them less prone to random deaths than a Shaper would be in the early game. It's also a bit hard for Shapers to capitalize on their strengths in the early game due to control level limiting how strong they can make their creations.

 

By late game, a Shaper is probably better than an Agent due to the lowered costs of shaping skills giving them a much more formidable army. But by that point, you've got the game breaking dominate and airshock spells that can win you most encounters (and you always have the trusty searer for bosses), so I didn't really find it too much of a struggle.

 

Regardless, I'm pretty happy to hear a battle discipline-esque system may be coming to the next game. Hopefully it's tied to skills in the melee tree so Guardians (and to a lesser extent, Agents) are naturally the best at them. It'll also be nice for Shock Troopers down the line since their medium skills in combat skills were kind of hard to take advantage of in 4/5.

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23 hours ago, Randomizer said:

Agents get to use spells for range attacks so they don't need to hunt for ammunition and can do area effect attacks to deal with swarms.  They have lower costs for training in buffing spells to keep them having extra damage, defense, and action s. They have lower cost to gain levels in daze and chamr, spells to reduce attacks from the enemy.

 

In the original game they could more easily exploit moving in and out of attack range in the round to deal damage and avoid it

 

 

And fewer and much weaker creations. So... 

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