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Making Base Classes More Distinct

Patch 0.7.8 is right around the corner and we’ve got some pretty big changes coming down the pipe that I want to talk about before they go live. We are making significant changes to passives, masteries, item base types, uniques and affixes.

For those of you that have been with us for a while, you’ll know that our passive system has changed quite a lot. Overall we’re really happy with it right now. It provides a familiar way to customize your character and brings depth to build crafting. Having said that, it has a few issues that we are working to shore up. Primarily, mastery trees unlocking at a different time than when you select your mastery class was confusing. You would effectively pick your mastery by placing a point in its mastery tree, but would make the actual decision later. Splitting up these moments really takes away from the impact of both.

Your feedback is what encourages to evaluates systems like this. We still get questions about how the passive system exactly works with regards to mastering and what you have access to. Our goal in this update is to more strongly link the act of selecting a mastery class with your progress up the passive tree. We really want that moment of picking a mastery class to be epic and exciting. Unlock a mastery bonus, get a new skill, and unlock the mastery class passive tree.

It’s a lot that happens all at once and you might have just thought, “What? I have to wait to master to unlock the mastery class passive trees?” That’s right, we’re making you wait. It’s ok though, we’ve expanded the base trees to have more nodes. You’ll still only be required to allocate 20 points in your base tree to put points into your masteries but you’ll be able to continue investing in the base tree above 20 to access new nodes and skills.

Body Armor and Helmets are the most visual (non-weapon) pieces of gear. Having 2D and 3D artwork for these slots that matches is important. As a Sentinel, when you put on a red doublet and it looks like a full plate set of armor, there is a big visual disconnect.

Recently, we have been working to make the gear you wear change the way your character model looks. We also don’t want to have “Leather Armor” have different 2D art for different classes just so it matches each 3D model. Going back to your stash on different characters and having huge chunks of artwork change would be jarring and unfortunate.

To solve these design requirements, we have decided to add in 32 new body armors and 32 new helmets (8 for each class). Each with completely unique stats. OK, fine, some are a little similar but none are exactly the same.

All previous types body armors and helmets will no longer drop, be available at the shop or be gambled for. Gear that already exists on your characters and in your stashes will not be affected. It will remain available and functional as an heirloom of a forgotten age.

Now, before you go running out to stockpile old gear, the new stuff is better. Trust me on this one, you’re going to want the new gear. All the new body armors and helmets are class locked. So really each class is getting 8 new chest and helm pieces. These are spread out over the level curve with the top tier pieces requiring levels in the 60’s and some in the very low 70’s. This change does increase the total number of high tier base types for all classes to give more end game viable options. Most new pieces of gear have secondary implicits that are thematic and class appropriate. You’ll see things like cast speed on Acolyte, minion damage on Primalist, crit chance on sentinel and mana on mage. You are significantly more likely to find body armor and helmets that your class can use, but will still find base types for other classes at a severely reduced rate.

With access to this new system of class locking body armor and helmets, we have an interesting opportunity to create some new affixes that just wouldn’t otherwise work. Introducing, class specific affixes. That’s right, affixes that can be broken down into shards and applied to gear that only work on specific class gear. There are nearly one hundred new affixes coming, many with skill specific effects. These new affixes will be very rare to find as a shard. You’ll have a much better time hunting them on gear. Yes, I know the immediate reaction to this is “loot filters when?”. Sorry, not this patch but they are coming and it’s gonna be awesome.

Now, these class specific base types have a few more implications for uniques, sets and gambling. A select few unique and set items have been converted to the new class specific base types (edit: very few changed, almost all are unchanged). If you're wearing them on the wrong class, sorry it will get forcibly unequipped when you load that character up. All other uniques are sticking with their original base types, and will drop during gameplay normally. (edit: The probability of getting any specific unique to drop in combat is unchanged) Some of you are probably wondering, "if I can't gamble for an old base type, can I still gamble for that unique?" No, you can only gamble for uniques that have a matching base type. We know this isn't ideal, and plan to have other ways to get specific uniques in the future.

I know there is a lot of new info in here but it does not come close to outlining all the changes to passives, masteries, item base types, uniques, affixes and more coming in 0.7.8. Full Patch notes are right around the corner. As always, we are very interested in what you all think about these changes. See you soon travelers.

66 Likes

Looks great!

Would be interesting if we got some type of “non-mastery”-base class mastery, maybe “Purity/pure”? Or maybe that would be too much like a fourth class for each primary.

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Class specific items, thats a very tasty change… :+1:

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That’s interesting to see so much crit avoidance on that body armor as an implicit mod, that really frees it up on other gear slots.

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Nice!

Awesome News!

Really unexpected item changes but i think it’s really good. Those class specific Affixes bring alot of depth that wouldn’t be possible with the old gear system

That Sound like you have something in store About the loot filter! hopefully it will be a complex loot filter for even the most desirable customization

Also i do have one more Question now. While it sounds that weapons don’t seem to be affected by this, can we expect some class-specific weapons(at least uniques). Even if you don’t make them class-specific equippable, just give some uniques intersted class-interacting affixes/mechanics

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Class specific unique weapons are definitely in the conversation.

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Holy s*** that’s some great news! The mastery changes are a great response to the community feedback. And the new item changes are just awesome. Good job guys!

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Also thank you for keeping all other class specific items available for each class as a drop. Perfect solution if you want to level different characters and classes!

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Awesome, thanks for the quick reply.

I really really admire you devs for what you are doing to this game.

I mean you guys listen to community Feedback PLUS come up with new exciting additions to the game that in never even thought of.

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I’m not sure I’m following the item base changes. Do you mean there is no more generic item base types that applies to all classes?

Also

I’m not sure I like this kind of “smart loot” system. When there are slight imbalances or perceived meta classes, smart loot is another result to tilt minmaxing players to choose to play meta classes so that their drops are biased towards the meta classes.

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Nice!

This is a really exciting change, and I’m pretty stoked about these new armors: That plate in particular has an extremely good statline.

I had a power outage yesterday while playing and lost that build my stash and shards,500 hrs of farming,cant stop playing this awesome game…but the upside is i have ROOM for all these new goodies yeehaaaa!

Is a Canadian or Brit and an American both designing these armour pieces at the same time? I see “Sentinel Body Armour” on the Solarum Plate but also “+350 Armor”. I’d like to say Mike knows which is correct here but he misspelled it 8 times in this post alone so he’s clearly given in to his American overlords. Sarno must be the one advocating for the correct spelling. :rofl:

Or perhaps it’s a compromise between nations. :thinking:

3 Likes

Class specifics. Excellent. Be proud!

Looking forward to seeing how the Mastery selection plays in the story campaign. Also, for the new gear.
Good job, Keep it up. :+1:

can i make a change. can daddy primalist have the sentinel chest piece XD ! but seriously great work cant wait to see the rest of the info to come with the new patch!

A little wierd for solo characters though

Not sure how to feel about this. Overall it looks like a good change but it also means I can no longer make a character for a specific purpose.

Let’s say I have a Shaman that is optimised for Monolith farming and a Lich that is more optimised to run the arena. This change means that I can’t really use the Shaman to farm for the Lich.

2 Likes