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Spell Focus Changes

    • 1964 posts
    August 30, 2020 5:00 PM PDT

    Looks like all of the spell focus were changed.

    Cold focus is no longer about reducing aggro.  It basically matches Fire focus now, just with a different element. 

    Old Cold Focus: Focus: Numbing Presence (Passive) - As your Numbing Presence grows, your Cold spells will lower your target’s Hate towards you up to X% per land. Additionally, the damage of your Cold spells will decrease up to Y%.

    New Cold Focus: Cold Focus Each Cold spell you use in succession will increase your charges of Cold Focus by 1, up to a maximum of 5. With each charge, your Cold spells will gain a bonus to damage, spell haste and critical chance. Additionally, the Mana cost of your Cold spells will increase with each charge. (Casting a spell from a different school will cause you to lose all charges of Cold Focus)

    Arcane focus changed as well.

    The overall way focus (foci?) used to work was this:

    Wizards focus their studies on three schools of Magic: Fire, Cold and Arcane. In battle, the Wizard will gain a stacking Focus buff when an ability from one of these schools is first used. Each time a spell from the same school is used in succession, this buff will continue stacking until it reaches its stacking limit.

    Now arcane only increases in focus if you use one specific spell (Prism Volley) instead of any arcane spell.

    Old Arcane Focus: Focus: Arcane Affinity (Passive) - As your Arcane Affinity focus grows, your Magic spells will return up to X% mana to you when they land. Additionally, the Mana cost and damage of your Magic spells will decrease up to Y%.

    New Arcane Focus: Arcane Focus Each use of Prism Volley in succession will increase your charges of Arcane Focus by 1, up to a maximum of 5. With each charge, your Prism Volley spell will return an increasing amount of Mana to you when it lands. Additionally, the Mana cost of Prism Volley will decrease with each charge. (Casting a spell from a different school will cause you to lose all charges of Arcane Focus)

    Fire focus has had the least changed.  It is mostly the same but has the addition of haste and crit chance added as focus increases.

    For reference:

    Old Fire Focus: Focus: Fury of Flame (Passive) - As your Fury of Flame grows, your Fire spells will gain bonus Fire damage up to X%, bonus chance to critically hit up to Y% and will cost up to Z% more mana to cast.

    New Fire Focus: Fire Focus Each Fire spell you use in succession will increase your charges of Fire Focus by 1, up to a maximum of 5. With each charge, your Fire spells will gain a bonus to damage, spell haste and critical chance. Additionally, the Mana cost of your Fire spells will increase with each charge. (Casting a spell from a different school will cause you to lose all charges of Fire Focus)

    There are good and bad things here.  Without getting to in depth on my thoughts I wonder what others think of this?

    I wonder what other classes were changed?  This is the first class I noticed a change but that is quite a large difference in how things will play out.  Almost a complete overhaul into the way the class will be played other than when in fire focus.

     


    This post was edited by philo at August 30, 2020 5:03 PM PDT
    • 4 posts
    September 2, 2020 3:51 AM PDT

    That is quite a change, and I'm glad you pointed it out.

    There are good and bad things here.  Without getting to in depth on my thoughts I wonder what others think of this?

    Seems like they shifted to allow damage to be closer between Fire/Cold, and removed it's innate utility. This may be to give options to Wizards if they want to choose a primary damage school.

    I'd have to assume they shifted the hate reduction to a special ability, or possibly some other mechanic entirely.

    I like the wording on the new Arcane Focus, and also like the idea of it remaining a mana return mechanism.

     

    • 1330 posts
    September 2, 2020 6:31 PM PDT

    Ever since it was confirmed that mobs of different body types would have varying vulnerabilities to different damage types (which was certainly expected, but good to hear it from VR), I've felt concerned that the Fire, Cold and Arcane foci for Wizard had been set up almost like having different stances i.e. more power, reduced hate, mana conservation. I felt like I would always be wondering if the best 'stance' or the best damage type would be optimal for any given fight. So I'm actually glad that they have made Fire and Cold function in the same way as I expect that either Fire OR Cold will be fairly optimal for a large majority of critters that I fight. And then just gave us Arcane as a help for mana conservation, which is a perennial issue with Wizards.

    • 1964 posts
    September 4, 2020 3:37 PM PDT

    I pretty much agree with you guys. 

    Now any wizard will be in either fire or cold focus a majority of the time and only using arcane to regain mana.

    Before all wizards would basically be in fire focus a majority of the time unless they needed to either reduce aggro, then they would be in cold focus or they needed to regain mana they would be in arcane focus.

    They actually simplified the way cold focus works and gave the wizard another option for a dps focus.  It is a very nice change.

    It was akward before how cold and arcane spells used to do less damage as your focus increased the more you cast them.  At the same time you would increase hate reduction in cold or increase mana savings in arcane as your focus increased.  That would lead to a situaion where you would want to cast cold and arcane spells as little as possible to get your aggro down or your mana back because the more you cast them the less damage you did. Before, the more you weren't casting a fire spell the more your dps suffered.  The current changes seem much better.  Easier to understand.

    I have a couple concerns.

    Like Orange mentioned,  there are no hate reducing abilities mentioned when before it applied to basically 1/3 of the wizards repertoire (every cold spell).  Not that big a deal.  I'm sure wizards will have to get something eventually.  There is a whole other school of magic that we know almost nothing about.

    My main concern is the way arcane focus is designed now.

    The only thing that increases arcane focus is if you spam 1 spell?  Is that an oversight?  Did they type that incorrectly?  Casting any other arcane spell has no effect on your focus?...and all other arcane damage spells are no longer listed.  Were they removed?  I think they have been overthinking and overcomplicating a lot of systems lately but there is a line there.  This seems dumbed down that the only way to increase arcane focus is to spam one spell.

    Why even have arcane focus?  Why not just let the wizard cast that 1 spell to get mana back then.  The focus part isn't necessary if you are only casting one spell to increase it anyway.

     Are other arcane spells going to be relegated to mostly non combat spells and buff type of spells like are listed?  Like flash/invis/ports etc?  Hopefully that isn't the case.  I'm not a fan of this "spam one spell" repeatedly to increase focus approach. 

     


    This post was edited by philo at September 4, 2020 3:41 PM PDT
    • 1330 posts
    September 4, 2020 5:59 PM PDT

    First, it's certainly possible that they may have relegated Arcane spells to something that doesn't deal damage. They might still be 'combat' spells, just debuffs or some more-complex form of effect.

    Or it might be that adding the 'focus bonus' to magical damage was somehow making those spells OP while not having the same problem with Fire or Cold. There's at least one difference between Fire & Cold on the one hand and arcane/magical damage on the other. That difference is that Fire and Cold have a basic, physical component. i.e. I could hit you with a magical bolt of flame, but I could also just hit you with a club that is on fire. So the physical quality might have meant some extra complexity in the whole damage calculation. (I don't think this is likely, just possible)

    Finally, they don't actually say that charges of Arcane Focus won't add a bonus to any other Arcane damage spells. They only say (actually, they only IMPLY) that Prism Volley is the only one that will GENERATE the charges. You could possibly wind up with the situation of chain casting P.V. until you regen your mana, then casting a different Arcane spell that consumes all your charges to boost damage. It also may be the case that they expect a Wizard to need to use P.V. for mana regen so much that you'll always have those charges built up when you go to cast another Arcane damage spell. This sounds like the most fun and interesting possibility to me, so it's what I hope is the answer.

    I don't have any reason to believe any one of these is more likely than the others, or that the reason isn't something entirely different.


    This post was edited by Jothany at September 4, 2020 6:14 PM PDT
    • 1964 posts
    September 5, 2020 9:06 AM PDT

    Jothany said:

    First, it's certainly possible that they may have relegated Arcane spells to something that doesn't deal damage. They might still be 'combat' spells, just debuffs or some more-complex form of effect.

    This is my guess as well.  That is what I meant...non-damage spells, not necessarily spells that could only be used out of combat. I don't think I worded that well. Spells like flash that I mentioned would fit this.

     

    Or it might be that adding the 'focus bonus' to magical damage was somehow making those spells OP while not having the same problem with Fire or Cold. There's at least one difference between Fire & Cold on the one hand and arcane/magical damage on the other. That difference is that Fire and Cold have a basic, physical component. i.e. I could hit you with a magical bolt of flame, but I could also just hit you with a club that is on fire. So the physical quality might have meant some extra complexity in the whole damage calculation. (I don't think this is likely, just possible)

    What you are mentioning would be a balancing issue that would be able to be adjusted so I don't think this is the case.  Fire/cold/arcane damage effects on weapons could all be added just the same.  I expect that elemental damage would be dealt separately from the physical damage of the weapon.  But I think we are on the same page.  I agree that "I don't think this is likely".

     

    Finally, they don't actually say that charges of Arcane Focus won't add a bonus to any other Arcane damage spells. They only say (actually, they only IMPLY) that Prism Volley is the only one that will GENERATE the charges.  You could possibly wind up with the situation of chain casting P.V. until you regen your mana, then casting a different Arcane spell that consumes all your charges to boost damage.

    Let's look at this again:

    Arcane Focus

     Each use of Prism Volley in succession will increase your charges of Arcane Focus by 1, up to a maximum of 5. With each charge, your Prism Volley spell will return an increasing amount of Mana to you when it lands. Additionally, the Mana cost of Prism Volley will decrease with each charge. (Casting a spell from a different school will cause you to lose all charges of Arcane Focus)

     

    That is what arcane focus is.  There is no damage increase component.  There is no other spell currently that will increase arcane focus or it would have been worded differently.  You will be able to cast PV to build charges and can continue to cast other arcane spells without losing those charges so you can then cast PV and gain the most mana back without having to rebuild your focus meter.

     

    It also may be the case that they expect a Wizard to need to use P.V. for mana regen so much that you'll always have those charges built up when you go to cast another Arcane damage spell. This sounds like the most fun and interesting possibility to me, so it's what I hope is the answer.

    I'm expecting that the player will always prefer to be at maximum focus level (of any focus element) if they can.  That should logically be the most efficient point now that they have done away with the old way that focus worked where it reduced damage as focus increased.  Now there are no negatives to being at a higher focus level.
    The way it plays out currently is that the wizard will only want to be casting arcane spells if they are in mana conservation mode.  Because arcane focus doesn't offer: "gain a bonus to damage, spell haste and critical chance" like fire and cold do we have to expect fire and cold to always be a higher damage focus when compared to arcane (even if arcane ends up with damage spells).

    I agree that " they expect a Wizard to need to use P.V. for mana regen so much that you'll always have those charges built up when you go to cast another Arcane damage spell." but that seems to be stating the obvious as far as efficiency.  

    I think we agree on just about everything.  My guess is that arcane will end up being mostly non-damage spells like was mentioned originally.

    ....granted, that takes us back to my point from the other post that casting one spell repeatedly to increase arcane focus seems like poor design.  Also, if you are only casting one spell to increase arcane focus it seems to minimize the need to have an arcane focus at all.   Just balance it so that casting that PV spell provides a median amount of mana gain and do away with arcane focus all together. It adds such a minimal benefit if there aren't a bunch of arcane damage spells that increase arcane focus.

     

    • 1330 posts
    September 5, 2020 11:58 AM PDT

    I think I could have worded what I intended differently. I think it is possible - though again, not likely - that VR could have been particularly clever in their description of the Arcane Focus, just for the purpose of leaving something unexpected but good for us to discover later. I agree that Prism Volley will be the only spell that generates charges of A.F. And their definition that you quoted certainly doesn't say that having charges of Arcane Focus gives any help to any other Arcane Spells. But, while they explain that A.F. charges will enhance the P.V. spell, they don't actually say that A.F. charges will 'ONLY' enhance that one spell. It clearly is implied, but not actually ruled out. And while this is playing "Sherlock Holmes" with the new descriptions, isn't that what we've all been doing for the last 5 years now?

    As I understand the technicalities of the language they used, it would not contradict anything in these definitions of the A.F. or of P.V. if you get in game and find that building up charges of A.F. adds some kind of bonus to the effect of other Arcane spells. Not necessarily damage, but some increased effect. I don't think this is any more likely to be the case than any other possibility we've discussed. Just that a clever lawyer lol could have written those descriptions to leave open the possibility. And as you've pointed out, it certainly IS a waste of the process to have it implemented to just benefit one particular spell, even if it could well be the single most useful spell for a Wizard. My personal guess is pretty much the same as yours, that most likely they removed most or all of the Arcane damage spells and left Arcane as primarly non-combat spells.

    However it turns out, I'm very curious to find out what they've done about all the other Arcane spells that are no longer listed. And I still don't feel certain of what the final, unknown Focus will be. But I'm currently very happy with how the Wizard is looking.


    This post was edited by Jothany at September 5, 2020 12:01 PM PDT
    • 1964 posts
    September 5, 2020 1:34 PM PDT

     But I'm currently very happy with how the Wizard is looking.

    I find it to be an improvement over the old version.  I still have the concerns I mentioned but I agree it is better than it was.  They are going the right way with it.

    • 215 posts
    September 6, 2020 5:05 AM PDT

    My expectations for Arcane are that the remaining spells are control only (root & stun etc).

    Key questions now:

    1. Where has the hate reduction gone to?
    2. What will the Cold Familiar buff be now? Same as Fire?
    3. Has the 4th spell line changed? What's it's focus now? Originally it was a different damage type to avoid the issue of Fire resistant mobs but now we have Cold for that? Could it have changed completely?
    4. Spell-weaving?