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Activatable Abilities for Companions

In Patch 0.7 we will be continuing to implement the Companions system. In addition to various smaller improvements - such as slightly adjusting restrictions on how many you may have out at once - we will be adding the activatable abilities for your Companions.

One issue faced by minion-focused builds is that, once you’ve summoned your minions, your action bar can be devoid of useful skills. The Companions system will replace each of your Companion-summoning skills with an activatable ability. This will only be available while you have the maximum number of that minion summoned, to avoid making it impossible to resummon them if they die. Today we’d like to show your these abilities!
 
 

Bear: Roar

A debuff which fears all enemies near your Bear causing them to run away.
 
 

Sabertooth: Flurry Swipes

Causes your Sabertooth to make three melee attacks in short succession.
 
 

Scorpion: Poison Nova

Poisons enemies around your Scorpion with 100% increased duration.
 
 

Spriggan: Healing Winds

Heals all allies in a large area over time.
 
 

Wolf: Howl

A stacking buff that increases your damage and your minions’ damage by 10% for 4 seconds

5 Likes

Can I ask why? They’re not likely to be used more often than most other skills.

2 Likes

What a fantastic concept! Really solves the useless buttons" issue ! Can’t wait to see what you guys come up with next :slight_smile: (only issue i can see is how people will resummon in order to heal minions like bear, tiger and scorpion)

3 Likes

The buff stacks already, so that would be really powerful. Because I think the more wolves you have, the more stacks you can get.

Looks great! Really like where you guys are going with companions and having them different from necro pets :+1:

2 Likes

The durations and cooldowns are for sure still up for discussion.

2 Likes

Making one of the activatable skills a permanent buff sort of misses the point.

That’s actually a great idea, any plan to do the same for Acolyst’s pets ?

1 Like

Sounds great, imo the idea is better if the abilities are impactful and have cooldowns that don’t allow for 100% uptime, maybe aiming for 25-50% depending on the impact.

The wolf stackable buff sounds like it’s meant to be spammed, but maybe I’m just reading into the mechanics because of the word “stackable”. What if it has a cooldown that allows for 100% uptime if used on cooldown, but allows up to X charges, so that, for example if X=3, you might instead wish to save up the howls to use on a big baddy and release all charges at the same time for 30% increased damage. You would also be encouraged to coordinate your other pet abilities within this window, could be fun.

I really like all those improvement, good work :slight_smile:
I’ve suggested similar ideas some time ago, so I really glad to see such things in development.
And I hope you’re interested in some remarks :blush:.


The idea is to reduce player’s passiveness while using primalist built around companions. And active skill for every companion - is great. It also allows to add some control over companions’ actions, add some tactics which involves companions’ new abilities. But …

  • Scorpion, Poison Nova: “Poisons enemies around your Scorpion”. Nothing wrong with it, except that you still unable to use this poison just when and where you need it. I can assume that there will be or may be a skill node which allows targeted usage, but such node may become “must have” for a player to build his skill-combo.

  • Sabertooth, Flurry Swipes: “Sabertooth makes three melee attacks in short succession”. Same here. This skill allows to increase Sabertooth’s damage against something your Sabertooth finds worthy of being attacked. Also this skill does nothing more - increases damage only. How about something like that:

    Crippling pounce: Sabertooth leaps to selected group of enemies and cripples them with his fierce attacks. Crippled enemies have their movement speed reduced by 50% for 3 seconds.

  • Spriggan, Healing Winds: “Heals all allies in a large area over time”. Can’t say much here. If area of effect is large enough then targeted cast is not needed or obligatory at least. Otherwise we’ll get similar problems as with scorpion. Also, in my opinion, it would be preferred as “critical heal” rather than a temporal buff to character’s regeneration (let’s say, significant cooldown, but great heal every second for 3-4 seconds). And may be add some kind of loss mechanics, like “Spriggan can’t attack or cast while performing Heal”.

  • Wolf, Howl: “stacking buff that increases your damage and your minions’ damage”. I’m confused with “stacking buff”. Is this something that lasts longer than skill’s cooldown? and we should use it every time when it’s available just to keep those stacks? If so, it may become second Fire Shield :thinking: or sort of. I don’t know what you are planning guys, but, as I understand, there’s two ways for solving this “buff maintain” problem …

    1. Skill has significant cooldown and its buff is very short-lived. Though its damage bonus may grant vital battle advantage. Buff still can be stackable if you wish to increase skill’s effectiveness when it’s used with several wolves. But I’m not sure that it should be a default mechanics.

    2. Skill has very low cooldown and it grants pretty long lasting, but minor buff. The buff is stackable (individual duration of every stack), so with several stacks their damage bonus can be significant. But every skill usage costs more with every buff stack that caster has. Such mechanics limits player’s ability to keep maximum stack number.

  • Bear, Roar: “A debuff which fears all enemies near your Bear causing them to run away”. …

… well… there’s a lot of posts here :slight_smile:

  1. about defense buff instead of roar: can’t say I agree with that :thinking:. Roar skill fits its nature very well, in my opinion. Also, crowd control often IS the defense. Though it doesn’t mean that Bear can’t protect its master. I’ve suggested few mechanics for this skill and some of them are defensive.

  2. about taunt instead of roar: if to be honest, I hate those kind of mechanics. Because they work against main goal, against main idea - to make summoner more active. And it’s not bad that you’re able to taunt an enemy coming to you once every 10-15 seconds, and that enemy remains taunted for 2-3 seconds. But when it becomes a play style, it’s just… meh :slightly_frowning_face:.

  3. about fear: well, it fits Roar, it’s natural. Though it’s good for ranged characters and not so good for melee characters. And that’s why I’ve suggested to stun enemies with the Roar, not fearing them. At the same time there probable can exist a node which transforms stun to a longer fear, or event fears enemies AFTER stun effect ends. Also enemies can be slowed by that fear, as they’re thrown into despair rather just feared :smiling_imp:.

1 Like

Get a popsicle stick

Nice that beta is ocasion to test new features, judging it before try seems some odd… Also there’s some other character prototypes, even people with fear about carpal tunnel could find something that fit their needs…

3 Likes

The Companions system is intended to help differentiate the pet classes.

While we’ll be continuing to improve the Acolyte’s minions over time, there are no current plans to either make her minions Companions or to implement an equivalent system.

1 Like

That makes a lot of sense, especially considering how many Acolyte pets are temporary. Perhaps similar functionality can be added to the skill tree though? It could be worth the unlock.

Making Acolyte’s minions as Companions is not necessary, I agree. Though the goals are the same - to make minion buttons “alive”. And I agree, Acolyte has own minion features, like “Wandering spirits” or “Summon Wraith”. Skills like these don’t need discussed type of rework. But Acolyte still has “Summon golem” or “Summon Skeleton”, and these type of minions live long enough to feel their buttons “dead”.

Yea, we’re really trying hard to differentiate the acolyte from the primalist in playstyle as well as theme.

1 Like

The problem is that if you have max companions but you have not summoned all your wolves then instead of using the howl ability it summons a wolf and randomly dispels another companion which is a little frustrating till you can raise your max cap. I would suggest make howling work with max total companions and if someone wants to summon a wolf then he must change another skill to summon the extra companion.

Just make the pet Portraits clickable, make a drop-down menu with “Disband”. Is way less clunky than changing skills.

Otherwise I agree, replacing your own minions instead of buffing them just because you specced a bit weird is nonsense.

PS: Oh, and generally don’t Forget that many People like playing “lazy builds” (myself included :smiley:), so having 2 “passive” skills on the bar isn’t a bad Thing.

Also, having the acolyte and primalist different from each other is fair enough, but please enable the primalist to also be a “pure pet build”, since Skeletons and Wild Animals are a very different theme. Acolyte having many weaker minions that are very much replaceable and the Primalist having fewer, but sturdier pets is already enough Differentiation IMHO, currently I see too many “You gain damage when pets XY” and stuff on the passives for Primalists.
Or at least don’t force a Primalist Pet Build into melee. Give him a bow Option or something if you absolutely Need to have the Primalist himself being in the fight.
BTW, the strong melee Focus doesn’t really fit into his backstory either, as

He never saw himself as a fighter. He was but a simple medicine man who found peace in the loyalty of his animal companions, the serenity of nature, and the power of the storm. Now though, he is determined to harness his strength and unleash his fury.

that lends itself more towards a…well medicine man as in “Primal Caster” than the Berserker type he currently is.

It’d be sad if there wouldn’t be a nature caster and nature pet build, just because we got the bog-Standard (theme-wise, I like the mechanics you added) Necro-Pets and PewPew-Mage.

Very good points. We do plan on adding nodes to the primalist companion skill trees which will disable their ability to have active cast buttons but will give some other small passive bonus instead or for some of them, the companion will just automatically use the abilities but they will be slightly weaker. This way you can pick which ones will have passive and active abilities.

Also, that back story might need some changing, I’ll get loremaster @kqkyle in here to see what we can do.

1 Like

give them nodes for instant cast too,
the auto cast + reduced damage is for lazy people, instant cast is for people who can manage the rotations.