View Full Version : The great balance pass..the prologue

03-11-2018, 08:02 AM
So in case you were unaware I have a current goal of getting all heros to rep two (and putting ones I have already higher than that a single rep higher) in order to give feedback on how to give each hero a touch up or "major balance pass" like highlander and nobushi got. The goal of this is to suggest relatively simple changes that won't require a mocap suit or anything taxing for the developers. We know they're reworking the rest of the OG cast but I severely doubt we will get anything on the level of conq or kensei. And I really don't think any hero needs that kind of attention anyway. Some heros will get both buffed and nerfed. some only one or the other. I'm going to do this in faction fashion. So my first one will be about knights (cause gotta represent) then the second will be samurai. Last will be the vikings.

So with that out of the way I called this one the prologue because it's going to cover 2 heros. That being Warden and Centurion. I chose to single these two out because they're the most I have experience with. both playing as and against. Also because Centurion was my love child and my sparring partners was Warden. More than that though I think both are very similar. And deserve a thread of their own to fully talk about. For those of you who are only here to see the proposed changes here they are:

~light related combos will not end when being blocked.
~Heavy finisher is now unblockable and uninterruptable.
~No longer stumbles when you GB whiff into OOS.

~health bump to 120.
~jumping heavy is now unblockable. You keep the same recovery. but can tech GB attempts. like the new parries behave.

Now before I explain why I consider these 2 heros pretty similar let me explain these changes and why I didn't opt for other ideas.
So with warden nearly all of his kit is used at some point. So his kit as a whole isn't flawed. It just needs a little help. The idea behind light combos not being interrupted comes from the fact that warden has pretty decent OOS threat. As you can't roll way. Meaning you're forced to react appropriately to his bash followups. This change is to sort of mimic that. Granted you "might" still be able to roll away. But the whole point is it lets Warden keep up his pressure even on someone who's hell bent on turtling.

The next suggestion is basically the Berzerker treatment. What I mean is zerker having unblockable on a finisher doesn't change how zerker plays. but it does force a reaction. By doing the same thing though that the kit normally did pre change muscle memory is still some what there. So it's not a total jarring change. Warden doesn't have armor though. and if we kept his top heavy finisher speed the same he'd just be lighted out of it too often. so giving it armor makes sense. And finally the last change is self explanatory. it serves no purpose and only further punishes a player when the game decides to break it's consistency and whiff a GB for no reason.

I DIDN'T choose to speed up his side light from neutral as it's start up animation is nearly identical to his side heavy start up. Which serves as a mind game for wardens bash. His side heavies serve a purpose already on GB's when not near a wall. his zone now that it isn't a free GB is a safe is option to throw on occasion. etc. Now. I'd LOVE to have a Warden that didn't focus on bashing. I've seen lots of good reworks that suggest how to change that. But I just don't think it's plausible. So I made changes that enhance is current gameplay without changing much.

Now for Centurion. I bet y'all are wondering why me, the dude who literally did a complete rework for his kit not to long ago is only giving him 2 changes. Well. As I said. These are balance passes. Not reworks. Secondly I have sort of had...well..a change of heart. As much as I love mix ups and mind games I also want the game to be mostly reactable. Just with a higher skill floor than is present. (not too much higher mind you.) A lot of what centurion does isn't safe or guaranteed. But it lands a surprising amount of times. It's easy to dismiss him if all you do is look at him on paper. But I've been doing nothing but playing him for the past 3 ish days and i'm getting away with even the occasional quick throw. I might make a new guide for him down the road. But the point is. My boi is mostly fine. So let me explain some things.

His jump heavy change was simple. it's already got armor. and is slow enough to be reactable. But adding the unblockable property means someone can't just stand there and block it for a free GB. they need to dodge it or parry it. and making it so you can't GB it means you have to know the correct punishment for your hero against it. Basically it makes it a semi viable option to throw occasionally. But it's predictable and telegraphed enough that players should have no issue dealing with someone who over uses it.

So why didn't I buff his zone? well. the first hit is 26 damage. and is rather deceptive due to it's speed and direction. If I made it cancelable in any fashion it would just be crutched on similar to PK's zone. and if I upped the damage to anything above 26 but below 30 it wouldn't make a difference. and over 30 would just feel bad from the receving end. Going from non critical to insta dead never feels good. It serves as a "get off me tool" in most instances and in 1v1 it's more of a random option you can throw when the person is critical.

I also opted not to mess with quick throw. because at the end of the day it's a guard break. And if we use it optimally (near a wall) and count the light I used to get into it I net 87 damage. 3 less than his full cutscene combo. Which is much harder to access. Replacing it is out of the question for a balance pass. Not that it would be easy to replace to begin with. And buffing it other ways like letting it come from other spots (like a heavy finisher or a blocked heavy) would just be far too oppressive. It's something you can pressure someone with in OOS along with other things. So it's good enough.

I didn't buff jab because it's safe ish as is to randomly throw. and it allows centurion to keep the pressure going when someone thinks the combo is over. Like quick throw it's another option that you will harass your opponent with on occasion. Kick speed doesn't need a buff when you can vary it's timing or threaten with it alongside a GB or other things when the person is OOS. we don't need another conq situation. Light into heavy is too strong. As is would deal 40 ish damage as is for how short the timing would be. (go into the training mode and unlock light into heavy to see the speed. it's insane.)

I also decided against letting him dodge out of a charging heavy. because it would simply make your opponent have to try and guess between too many options. Centurion can be pretty overwhelming as is. He doesn't need more of that. Now what did I mean by calling warden and centurion similar? Well. Warden has a base kit that is as good as the person who can use the games base mechanics. Yes he's got some bad matchups. Yes some heros have more options than him. But a good player can still destroy even a decent player using a top tier hero. And as i've said. My goal is to make more things about the player. Not what hero he's using. And really not every hero needs to be A or S tier. That's not how things are even in true and blue fighting games.

Centurion is kind of like that. Except instead of using the games base rules he's got his own set of rules. And a good Centurion knows how to use those rules to the best of their ability. His lights and heavies are relatively safe options in a huge amount of situations. Which is why centurion is as solid as he is. So it only makes sense that his other options (quick throw, zone, jump heavy, jab, and kick) are all only useful in some situations. Honestly centurion hits hard. real hard. If he manages to use any of that effectively. At the end of the day yes. everything he does is practically unsafe. and a good player can react and counter accordingly. Same with warden. That's not entirely a bad thing. And both heros only need a slight nudge to make them well rounded. Which is why my suggestions are as minor as they are.

Anyway that wraps up "the great balance pass prologue." Join me again in a week or so where i'll have my changes for the remaining knights ready for you guys. Hope to see you there. And as always thanks for reading~