So, I have a pretty lengthy opinion about these 3 skills, and I'll try to squeeze everything into as few words as possible. Although it would still be pretty long.
I understand that my opinion (in particular about Force Field) may be a little controversial, but bear with me.
The post will be divided into 4 sections (because its so long):
The Facts - What these 3 skills currently do
The Traits - Noteworthy stuff relating to these 3 skills
The Reality - How the skills actually function in game
The (Proposed) Changes - Where I think these 3 skills need to goThe Facts
(lifted directly from Torchlight Wiki: http://torchlight.wikia.com/wiki/Torchlight_Wiki
)Force Field"Your armor projects Ember energy, creating a forcefield around you, and a half-strength forcefield around allies. Once the forcefield absorbs its maximum damage it dissipates, removing all benefits. Forcefield uses all available Charges to increase damage absorption by 50% per Charge."
Tier I: Mana cost and casting time are reduced by 20%
Tier II: Allies receive a full strength shield.
Tier III: Mana cost and casting time are reduced by 50%
- % chance to cast, does not proc when your Force Field takes damage
- Affects allies
- 8 seconds cooldown
- Provides increasing Knockback resistance as it is leveled
- Amount blocked increases with both player and skill levelAegis of FateWhen foes attack you, your armor has a chance to generate a defensive "bubble" around you that prevents further damage. The amount of damage this shield can absorb is equal to 200% of your Armor plus 100. While Aegis is active, you also get 50% Knockback Resistance.
- % chance to proc increases with level.
- % chance to cast, does not proc while Aegis of Fate is active (including its own cast)
- Negligible (if any) internal cooldown
- Considers the total physical
armor only, after it is scaled by VIT, and +% to (physical) armor.Charge ReconstitutionWhenever the Engineer spends a Charge on an ability, they regain a portion of their health over the next two seconds.
- Does not stack with itself; further procs only refresh the buff duration
- Scales with skill and player level
- Procs off any Charge usageThe Traits
Mostly my opinion, but I felt listing this down would help people understand my proposed changes better. I've conveniently excluded directly mentioning how much each skill actually heals/blocks, because that's a matter of tweaking numbers (and doesn't need much discussion beyond than plain observation that a certain skill does too much etc. etc.)Force Field
- Affects allies, and minions (therefore beneficial to summoners, and builds utilizing summons)
- Significant boost to Knockback Resistance
- Is the only active out of the three; also therefore the only one with tier bonuses
- Consumes all Charges
- Has a cooldownAegis of Fate
- Procs on hit, which is pretty poor
- Scales with Armor, and in turn VIT as well as +% armor / physical armor
- Considerable boost to Knockback ResistanceCharge Reconstitution
- Does not stack with itself
- Heals for fixed values
- Does not scale with anything
- Procs on Charge consumption
- Is the only Heal out of the threeThe Reality
Force Field blocks way too much damage, compared to Aegis of Fate, and the potential Heals from Charge Reconstitution. It completely overshadows them. Force Field is also worthless in the earlier levels, barely absorbing more than a few hits, as opposed to the many hits a player can take.
Aegis of Fate can rarely proc in the end game due to end game damage values. Even if it does, 200% of a player's physical armor will rarely be enough to shield for more than a single hit. While significant at the very early stages of the game, quickly becomes irrelevant.
Charge Reconstitution does not heal fast enough to cover the damage dealt in the end game, and since it doesn't scale with anything nor stacks with itself, its use is limited at best. It should also be noted that the only main attack skill that consistently uses Charge is Flame Hammer (other skills include Tremor, Flame Bash, Shock Grenades, Force Field).The Changes
I view each of these skills as potentially 'core' survival skills for the Engineer. I think each, if equally balanced, provides survivability in a unique way that would be more benifical to certain builds and less to others.
At the same time, to prevent the Engineer from having too much survivability from simply taking all 3 skills, each must scale in different way from the others.
With that in mind:Force Field"Your armor projects Ember energy, creating a forcefield around you, and your allies. Once the forcefield absorbs its maximum damage it dissipates, removing all benefits."
Tier I: Minions receive a x1.5 strength shield.
Tier II: Minions receive a x2.0 strength shield.
Tier III: Minions receive a x2.5 strength shield.
- Flat value increased
- No cooldown
- Will no longer provide Knockback resistance
- Amount blocked increases with both player and skill level
- Players should still receive the same strength shield as the casterRationale
Force Field, as an active skill, that initially affected allies, is a perfect Summoner skill. It provides Summon Engineers something active to do while spamming Spider Mines and whatever other summons they may have.
This change emphasizes Force Field as an active summoner skill, using it as a sort of 'mana shield' and allowing it to scale with Mana and Cast Speed (to actually cast Force Field). It provides Summon Engineers another direction to scale into the end game. However, it could still be utilized in other builds, should those builds have the mana to support it.
The removal of Knockback Resistance is meant to discourage melee builds from using it, because that was an unnecessary perk to this already powerful skill. (Aegis of Fate will still retain its Knockback Resistance)
Overall, it forces the player to specialize their characters into making full use of Force Field. It is no longer the same generic skill that is available to all Engineers, and also has less utility. However, it also scales better with selected builds.Aegis of FateEvery X seconds, your armor generates a defensive "bubble" around you that prevents further damage. The amount of damage this shield can absorb is based on Y% of your armor. While Aegis is active, you also gain Z% Knockback Resistance.
- X decreases with skill level; Y and Z increases with skill levelRationale
The risky proc on damage is replaced with a fixed interval proc. I felt too high a proc chance would reduce this skill into either a pesudo-block mechanic or a "tank a bit of damage to HP, proc Aegis, spam heals under Aegis, rinse and repeat", which while reasonable, felt a little unreliable as a survivability skill since proc chance still does have a chance to fail after all.
In this rendition, it would essentially achieve the exact same goal without the unreliability, nor the pesudo-block styled defence.
Proccing every interval allows the Engineer to basically resist a certain threshold of damage before he sustain real damage. This is heavily synergistic with the overall Engineer skillset, containing slows, stuns, Knockbacks and (most importantly) armor boosting skills.
It also provides melee builds with their Knockback Resistance.
Overall, it would make Aegis of Fate more usable.Charge ReconstitutionWhenever the Engineer spends a Charge on an ability, they regain X% of their health.
- X increases with levelRationale
Instant heal, allowing it to keep up with any damage source.
Scales with Max Health (hence VIT, +HP and %HP), Cast Speed and Charge Rate (aka Damage?).