About the priest...

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About the priest...

Postby Lujo on Sat Jan 26, 2013 1:27 pm

Ok, so I'm holding off from a "Classes" discussion for a few updates - we've unleashed an avalanche of feedback on the devs lately, they've managed to keep up with it on top of all the other work, and they gave us so much to work through and test out. The CB solution was simply brilliant in taking into account every stance that was given on it - it's better as a purchase, it's initial gold cost is less offputting, it starts with full CP complement from the shop, and if you spam it too hard it's gonna cost you - in short - brilliant. Wether further tweaks are needed - who knows, but the approach is worthy of praise, and if it doesn't shut us up about it for a while, we are an ungratefull bunch of whiners... I'm looking forward to the next few updates!

BUT!

Before everyone starts giving their opinions on which of his many features the wizard could stand to give up, I'd like to say a few things about the priest:

1) I know he can be powerfull, I know the "full heal on HP potion use" is a very strong ability, and I know a few places where he is the right man for the job.
2) However, he is too situational - Good Golly isn't something you can depend on unless you locker the Zombie Dog, and then it costs you a locker slot and only works on one boss.
3) He has trouble leveraging his potions ability unless you unlock stuff, or prep stuff, or play as a halfling.
4) Since he has no inbuilt damage or damage resistance, just how much you can pull off with your strongest ability is limited since it often translates to - one mediocre hit per health potion. Ok, it sounds like I'm complaining about a theoreticaly efficent potion spike, but still...
4.1) Also, having nothing but a situational damage boost has him wasting exploration looking for undead, and with his large health pool, he's allready wasting exploration every ime he wants to get fully healed.
5) The gods he would be well served with, except Taurog, - GG and Drac, both severely discourage potion use. He also isn't all that easy to combine with Fire Heart.
6) He doesn't really feel like a priest at all, rivaling only the fighter for the most mislabeled set of abilities and gameplay expirience.
7) Due to all this - it always seems like someone could do the job better, except those few times where picking him up and romping through something feels like a formality.



Still, suggesting a rework of a seemingly straightforward base class, with challenges already in place would be a bit presumptious - if they weren't actually legit, often times brought up through the whole beta, and creating quite a bit of a gap between priests and Thieves, Fighters and Wizards.

So my suggestions:

Light:

Add a "scout: undead" clause to his "+100%" against undead ability. "Scout" abilities are tromendously powerful, and this would be a big buff as it would increase both his overall power (by saving exploration and optimizing leveling), and his viability (by increasing his dependability on undead-light maps).

Moderate:

Give the priest a bunch of indulgences. The starting out players will not know what to do with them, but once they start unlocking gods - they'll really appriciate having a class with which to experiment with gods.

Either 3 total (1 per ablility, for gag sake), 4 total (2 for the first 2 abilities, with Scout: Undead) or 6 total (2 per ability)

Say:

GOOD HEALTH: +3 HP/level, 1 Indulgences
GOOD DRINK: 100% HP potions, 1 Indulgences
GOOD GOLLY: +100% vs. Undead, Scout: Undead, 1 Indulgences

Heavy:

Since the priest lacks both damage and damage resistance, as well as having troubles with several gods, without major league unlocks and heavy preps he fails as both a fighter and as a priest.

I'd suggest adding piety related clauses to his ability, say:

1) GOOD DRINK - Small piety gain upon drinking potions - to allow him to farm small ammounts of piety with no deities, and to offset piety penalties for drinking potions so that he can worship GG and Drac (with a hope of a GG nerf incoming at some point). This would also help introduce piety into the game before the deities are unlocked, and ease newbies into gods. Whether it would break gods as such is another question, but I'd die to find out, and I'd rather have him a bit above the curve than the way he is now. It would also allow him to be the one guy who can worship a blank pactmaker for the resists or whatever, which makes sense because he's supposed to be a priest - a proffesional god worshiper.

If it worked on any potion, but especially mana potions, he could spend them early for piety benefits, while savig the health potions for the spike.

2) GOOD HEALTH - +X damage for every Y piety. Some sort of damage boost if he can accumulate, say, 10 - 50 piety or whatever numbers are made to work with his piety gain from drinking potions.

3) GOOD GOLLY - Small piety gain on killing undead with/without the undead scouting bonus. To help with Drac Worship. This would focus him on harvesting undead even more, true, and help out with GG quite a bit, but at least he gets a compensation for having to be a big health guy who you take to maps with the life-draining vampires, and blinking-lifedraining wraiths.


I think these would make him much more interesting, much more dependable and much more priestly. The new priest would look like this:

GOOD HEALTH - +3 life per level, +2 Damage per 10 piety, up to 50
GOOD DRINK - Health potion heal for 100%, +3 Piety on potion use
GOOD GOLLY - Can sense Undead, +100% Damage vs. Undead, +1 Piety for killing undead.

Or something like that. I'd take the Scout:Undead on it's own, and maybe they want to keep it simple, but after playing the game from top to bottom, I have to say he was the core class I was least happy with, or least enthusiastic to play.

The benefit of all this would include less need for all the stuff that is seemingly in the game just to help him out at times you somehow decide to play him without heavy preps. My "Heavy" suggestions might not be the smartest, or the best, but at least I opened up the discussion with something I thought about. What do you guys think?
Last edited by Lujo on Sat Jan 26, 2013 6:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: About the priest...

Postby paplaukes on Sat Jan 26, 2013 3:29 pm

I have to agree, I nearly never choose priests, only for completion. They feel least distinct. Finding undead enemies is a matter of luck, so putting the priest in charge of that with Sense Undead (priestly flavour, yummy) is a great idea.

Piety bumps for Drac may be going too far. I mean, I don't mind if my Wizard doesn't play well with Taurog - there are other gods to choose from. Same for priests and Dracul.
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Re: About the priest...

Postby Lujo on Sat Jan 26, 2013 3:38 pm

The Drac and GG comments are because Priests would really want to worship Drac and GG, but are cut off from their strongest ability if they do so - and GG meshes superbly with big health, and so does drac, but he is also a big source of resists. I mean, the priest has very little flavour as is (well, priestly flavour anyway), and worshiping the few gods he actually wants to worship - limits his already limited abilities.

Which feels wrong for a priest really...

EDIT: And he has 0 distinct benefits from worshiping other gods, nothing to do with piety, and the only 2 gods he wants to worship except Taurog punish potion use, and/or killing undead. This makes the priest effectively the direct opposite of what a DD universe priest of any kind would be, except being a priest of Taurog, who is basicaly a berserking warrior...

My piety suggestions were sort of a - if he's gonna worship anything, give him a bonus based on unspent piety, since he doesn't really want to spend piety most of the time. Also, give him a way monger piety by playing the way he does, so his natural playstyle can lead to a free boon with any god, or he can use the extra piety to shore up his incompatibility with the gods he is actually synergistic with. And also make him a natural pactmaker worshiper, so there is one...
Last edited by Lujo on Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:27 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: About the priest...

Postby paplaukes on Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:17 pm

Drac penalty is not that harsh. GG, yeah, not fun. I'm not sure I expect each class to have a 'best' deity. Even if it would be "priestly". That, and I've seen enough GG praise as is, despite potion penalty. That probably means GG is powerful, and if it is, trying to bypass the penalty would make the deity too powerful, IMHO.
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Re: About the priest...

Postby Lujo on Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:25 pm

Well, you're right on both counts, but again - the GG "praise" ussually boils down to "GG can beat anything", and that sort of situation ussually leads to nerfs, with or without urging. Drac penalizes potions AND undead killing - it actually really counterintuitive that you actually want to worship him as a priest. And you do. You can also live with the GG penalty, to be sure, or convert out - but that means that the priest - supposedly a holy person - is by default someone who breaks the laws of deities he is synergistic with.

Why would such person so ill suited to worship, or indifferent to the boons of the gods ever call himself a priest? (This is important because of the introductory nature of the priest as a base class).

Also, what DOES his simplistic nature teach newbies? Telling undead apart from non-undead? Telling red potions apart from the blue ones? Potion spiking? Halflings? None of these abilities "go anywhere" as far as the "tech tree" or "player development tree" goes, except the Triling, which is just a noob-tube evolutionary dead end.

I may be undervaluing the benefits of his simplistic nature, however, so I whish I knew some metrics about priests...
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Re: About the priest...

Postby paplaukes on Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:37 pm

Currently, flavour wise priests are these adamant (hp pool) fighters against evil, while anything to do with piety went to Paladins. Offset by not being able to switch. I think that Scout undead fits the priest description, while piety related suggestions not so much.

Gods.
Dracul: if an undead killing, potion quaffing priest joins Dracula, he should expect the consequences :)
GG: yeah, seems a fit flavour wise. Like Halfdragons and Binlor or Assassins/Tikki. No suggestions. Tough love and all that :)
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Re: About the priest...

Postby Lujo on Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:43 pm

I actually laughed at your explanations because they were funny. Come to think of it, just starting him off with a bunch of indulgences would probably do the trick, as long as he got "scout undead".

Ability one: +3 HP/level, 2 Indulgences
Ability two: 100% HP potions, 2 Indulgences
Ability three: +100% vs. Undead, Scout: Undead, 2 Indulgences

I could get behind an indulgent priest :D Would keep vet's busy forever ^^

EDIT: Moved this into suggestions under "Moderate". I always miss out those moderate options at first. :)
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Re: About the priest...

Postby Darvin on Sat Jan 26, 2013 7:42 pm

The Priest is basically dependent on playing as a Trilling to have both sufficient potions and damage to leverage Good Drink. I'd agree with you that he's not really working in his current form. However, I'm not a huge fan of any of your proposals, either. Not sure what should be done with him, but it's a good discussion topic and one that devs should consider.
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Re: About the priest...

Postby Sidestepper on Sat Jan 26, 2013 7:54 pm

The Priest's theme is based on health and healing. The problem is that the bonuses are flat and hard to leverage. What if Good Health gave a percent bonus to health instead of a flat +2/level? That would be a totally unique power that can't be replicated by anything else in the game and could be combined with lots of existing elements.

Let's say that he got +20%. Would that make him overpowered with Glowing Guardian or Earthmother, or merely on parity with worshipers that have less health but innate damage?
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Re: About the priest...

Postby Lujo on Sat Jan 26, 2013 8:30 pm

IB4 HEARTATTACKS - The following is the HYPOTHETICAL RADICAL IDEA, ment to be FACULTATIVE THEORYCRAFTING:


I'll just put this here on the off chance it turns out to be smart enough:

Well to be perfectly honest, with all the in-depth strategy knowledge about the system we've gathered throught this beta, I feel like the most radical solution to several things that've been bugging me forever would be (something like) the following:

Move the Fighter's XP ding benefits to the priest, but leave the priest as the "Big Health" guy with "Scout Undead". This would make the priest a healthmongering DING machine, which is the only natural way to play big health guys, with "wisdom benefits" for killing stuff, and an edge against undead.

Ability 1 - GOOD HEALTH - Big health (either per level, or percentage or whatever)
Ability 2 - GOOD GRIP - 100% vs undead, scout undead
Ability 3 - GOOD GOLLY! - Tiki's Edge, XP bonus

And there you have a priestly DING machine with healthmonstering capabilities for later.

Then give the fighter the 100% HP potion spike, what with him being the first thing anyone will play and it being a really straightforward ability. Give him the DP as well, for newbie missclick protection and pro chaining with Taurog, and what the 3rd ability would be I have no clue, but whatever it is it has to be newbie friendly and hopefully more usefull than the current scouting.

Ability 1: 100% on HP potions (+ possibly more HP potions per level, or more than 100%)
Ability 2: Death Protection at start
Ability 3: Something usefull (scouting/mana potion use/damage related)

And then you'd have a fightery fighter and a priesty priest. Priest could go hybrid with dings, with a good health basis, fighter would be able to spike something to death on his own provided he can up his damage, which is what his last ability could be about, pretty much... Something like - damage bonus on mana potion consumption, so he has use for those and can up his damage that way...

So then your inital classes would be Melle Potion Spiker (fighter), Hybrid Potion Spiker (Thief), Ding machine (Priest) and Glyph Guy (Wizard). Should work out fine, I guess...


EDIT:

Or the other solution of giving the starting classes GLYPH MAGNETS simmilar to the one on the Wizard, with Fighter getting WONNAFYT (which he seems to have an inordinarily high chance to spawn anyway), Thief I guess either GETINDARE or WHEYTWUT, and the Priest IMAWAL to help him ding his way through levels. But anyways, the most basic thing big health gennerally works with is dings, and priest lacks in that department as well...
Last edited by Lujo on Sat Jan 26, 2013 10:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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