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Old 01-07-2010, 05:42 PM   #1
bois
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Default Year in review 2009 : Knight

Hello everyone,

As the year has turned over I decided to have a look back at 2009 and see what transpired for my favourite class, the Knight. This is what I discovered and present as a reminder.

February greeted us with the announcement by NGD that Heroic presence would not affect the caster and now works as originally intended. Some new casting animations were implemented.

April saw us 'kicking' instead of 'tripping' and the auras Heroic presence, Deflecting barrier, stars shield and shield wall stopped checking for obstacles.

May brought all classes a 20% movement speed bonus.We saw reductions in area of effect to 6mts of skills like lightning strike, typhoon, thunder strike.This would affect mainly barbs but knarbs to some extent as well. There were adjustments in the piercing tree with balestra, ripost, impale and
multiple thrust.The little used skill martial reflexes saw a reduction in casting time.

Specifically, knight saw a number of changes at this time.
Heroic Presence was moved to the “Vanguard” discipline. Shield Wall saw an improvement in protection while its arc of effect was reduced to a tiny 90° behind the knight.
Stars Shield moved to the “Shields” discipline, saw an improvement in protection but suffered the same fate of a 90° arc behind the knight.
Deflecting Barrier was moved to the last position of the discipline.It became a ranged damage reduction spell and also had a 90° effect area behind the Knight.
Precise Block saw the blocking value being raised proportionally according to the character's blocking statistics.
Army of One saw resistance taking into account damage type.

July brought arguably one of the best improvements in positioning code up to that date. Enter strafing ,mouse look and mouse movement to RO.

this update also attempted to fix the contentious issue of the aura arc of influence of 90°. In effect NGD admitted by increasing the arc that 90°was indeed too small. Stars shield, shield wall,and deflecting barrier was widened to a 130°arc of influence.

Other changes affecting knights included:
- Typhoon: Casting time reduced to a 2.5 sec.
- Thunder Strike: Casting time reduced to 2.5 sec.
- Impale: Casting time reduced to 0.5 sec.
- Multiple Thrust: Casting time raised to 1.5 sec.
- Lightning Strike: Casting time reduced to 2.5 sec.
- Feint: Range now is the same as the equipped weapon range.

September: Enter one of arguably the most contentious and despised of all changes this year for Knight and barb, The phantom hit.
NGD implemented its new combat system to mixed reviews and while generally positive in that it narrowed the gap between warriors and ranged classes, it introduced the unexpected malus regarding certain 0.5sec cast spells.
Shield bash in particular was affected and this update rendered this often used skill practically useless against a moving target. To compound matters Troll skin cool down was increased to 4.5 mins.
NGD attempted to make rigorous preparation and awareness more attractive by reducing cast times to little effect. Deflect projectiles also got reduced cast time.

Of course one cannot forget the implementation of the global cool down mechanism. It raised questions whether it nullifies the effect of fast vs slow weapons in combat. To my mind this remains somewhat inconclusive.

December brought with much fanfare the new NGD engine , NGD1.5 . This remains a work in progress and as such will be a matter for discussion in 2010 as is slowly matures.

Edit: DkySven kindly (thanks btw) mentions the arc of effect of auras changed from 10 to 6mts.
My Opinion:

Knights have faced some challenges in 2009. None that makes the class unplayable by any means but slightly irritating none the less.

Several changes like troll skin and awareness, rigorous preparation were mainly cosmetic and as such ineffective. Phantom hits remain a bother. 1.0.7 brought a new hope in the positioning code which 1.08 built on, only to be nullified by phantom hits.
The new engine is ..well.. new so bugs can be expected. At the moment there are issues with the lags and positioning codes again so we will have to wait and see.
2009 saw no new spells like taunt which would have enabled grinding to be a bit less stressful for knights. Coupled with the odd positioning error and the numerous mob resists /evades, compounded by reductions in hitting power which was not large to start with, grinding a knight remained a slow tortured process.
The reduction in auras arc of influence resulted in the reduction of their use and the constant growth of knarbism. The random nature of blocking also played its part in this.

In the new year I expect the current trend to continue. Grinding for knights will remain not for the feint of heart or non-determined individual. Blocking will remain random and sporadic and as such I have opted for a resistance and evasion type setup and armour for this year. As it stands I resist/evade much more than I block now.

Knarbism will see an explosion and auras will be used less and less. As a matter of fact, it seems Heroic Presence is the only aura of choice among most knights I see. We can expect auras giving way to areas as Knights attempt to have more influence on the outcomes of wars.
Constitution and knarb setups will be the name of the game in 2010 if nothing changes.

I would like to see a few things addressed hopefully during 2010.

- lags/ positioning code
- removal of phantom swings
- instant cast on shield bash in particular
- a few new options in very slow weaponry
- a new option in lvl 50 armour
- new shield options at the 48 to 50 level
- have a look at the vanguard tree with the idea of modifying awareness and rigorous preparation.
- new options in taking damage for allies or shielding allies
- widen arc of influence of auras to at least 180 degrees
- have another look at spring with the aim of improving balance vs archer speed
- contemplate placing a mob specific self defence buff in the vanguard tree
- another look at protector. This should not allow you to attack but you should be able to cast protective auras.

I for one will continue playing my knight which I find to be one of the most challenging and as such one of the most rewarding once you can master it.

For those who like a challenge I suggest playing knight. You can be successful on it even without high end equipment. I for example have literally no + constitution armour and run around with 4160HP (minus troll skin) most of the time and still manage to survive and have fun. You can too.

Hopefully others can start threads on the other classes.

Best Regards
Artec

PS: if I put any wrong information regarding 2009 updates and time please do not hesitate to point it out. I tried my best to be accurate. Thanks.

Last edited by bois; 01-07-2010 at 06:00 PM.
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Old 01-07-2010, 05:48 PM   #2
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The only thing you missed was that the auras who got an arc of effect also had their range changed from 10 to 6, but it's a nice summary.

I agree that the knight class can be rewarding. However, I do think that the knight lacks the tools to do his job properly, as you described with Taunt. Phantom swings and position lag are what annoys me the most.
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Old 01-07-2010, 07:25 PM   #3
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Very nice read and wonderful post

I enjoyed reading and (remembering) some of the changes I had forgotten (mostly all, i have the attention span and memory of a goldfish i think)

I would like to see a revamp on the positioning issues (main reason why i havent played my knight in almost a year now, that and those all too promised but never given transfers)
I would like to have auras back to their spherical ranges,
I loved brain piercing, i loved rapiers, but now with cast time interruption a moot isue..one more nice "unique" skill for melee fighters broken unintentionally.
I miss the old DB, it was a nice bit of protection against terror and chain spam.
shield bash is again, almost impossible to use, but in theory a good idea..
same with the change to balestra and other immobilizes..the fixed dmg was really unneeded.
defensive stance was nice but even more so crippled by the speed impact and movement speed change (needed to use spring in conjunction but whats the point if always out of range so to speak)
was taunt ever fixed btw? or is it still broken and useless except for drawing in mobs/aggroing epics?
i loved keeping a hunter pet off a soft conj, but last times i ever used it it was broken, and well if hunter got scared, simple LP and invincble pet..yay. not sure if either of those were ever addressed, but back then, it made things suck, plainly.
I loved the spear tree, but when they changed balestra to fixed dmg, and ripost to 20 cooldown, throw in some pos lag, and out of range, you'd be lucky to hit that pathetic fixed dmg hit and get off a ripost too.

sc was more tolerable from 6 to 10 i believe, with its instant cast and higher mana cost but lowered weapon % dmg, it wasnt too hard hit, but all of the goody spells like disable limb and crash (anti hunter to me) were darn near a miracle to perform back then, usually involving running AHEAD of said target (as a knight thats pretty hard being so slow) or being inside them..(just replace this with phantom swings instead of old pos bug, same effect)





I really love the class still, just its like being a metal masochist at times, with hardly any reward.
if NGD can really make the class live up to their intended playstyle in 2010, with improvements instead of nerfs, then I'd be happy to pick up a shield again

I want a class that was truly a tank and could PROTECT his allies with auras and buff disables (fatal strike etc) speed disabling (disable limb) conts lowering (crushing) multiple dizzies (jawbreaker/shield bash) evasion reduction (crash) awesome passive protection vs slash/pierce/blunt/magic/knocks (runover) and the ability (though hardly used) to give others magical protection. and areas!! areas are always fun for everyone..not even mentioning the old auras, with their unique balances (protection/cover/magical/blunt) and this is hardly even complete on whats knights are capable of.

sounds so damn versatile and enjoyable..but let down by being another bystander in war due to bugs and problems. i truly love this class and can go on and on about how unique it was..and still is to some point.
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Last edited by Puppypaws; 01-07-2010 at 08:40 PM.
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Old 01-07-2010, 11:11 PM   #4
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I love'd how a knight protects a whole group by using auras...cause ngd bleeped it up..its sad.
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Old 01-08-2010, 07:29 AM   #5
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The biggest disadvantage for knarbs (I have one for like more than a year, I never swithed to auras) was the reseting of weapon damage buffs when a weapon is changed to another class, making it harder to play with a 3 weapon setup.
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Old 01-08-2010, 11:59 AM   #6
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I think that currently the biggest fail in knight's build are auras. They work only in a small triangle behind a knight. With movement boost and position lags they can only work for... archers on fort walls. Otherwise they are completely unreliable. And the 3 auras limit is just the final nail in the coffin. Who would change Mana Communion, Greater Healing or Mana Pylon to a very occasional armour boost or damage reduction?
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Be back when: 1. Selection system is fixed/rebuilt. 2. Phantom swings are gone.
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Old 01-10-2010, 06:37 PM   #7
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It's a long road to victory.... blame the nerf herders
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