Upcoming Wizard skill: Eldritch Mastery

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NearNihil
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Upcoming Wizard skill: Eldritch Mastery

Post by NearNihil »

Hello everyone! Inspiration struck and I came up with a cool new skill, but wanted to garner some feedback before taking the plunge in building it. So here it is!

Presenting:
Eldritch Mastery. It would be a child skill of Eldritch Mixing at 60 CP. Where Mixing focuses on a breadth of knowledge, Mastery rewards focus. The new skill unlocks capstone spells for the wizard. If you know all the 6 spells in a group (such as all of the Electric spells) and this skill, a new spell unlocks - a "signature" spell that more or less exemplifies the element. If you know multiple sets of spells, you get the spell for every set.

Balance
The new spells are big and costly with big damage numbers and/or interesting effects rarely seen elsewhere. All of them cost at least 2 AP and two digits worth of MP. However, since they are the "signature" of a spell tree, some modifiers you can use on normal spells can't be used on these ones. Further, they cannot be learned through other means (so no gems).

Applicable effects
  • Spell Parry/Turning, but only as a Wizard with the capstone for the element and this skill. Otherwise gets treated as an "unknown spell". If you learn the new skill, a Wizard Council seat is (generally) easier to defend since the new spells can't be turned into Arcane damage which would count towards the "charged attack" clause. However, not all new spells are direct attacks.
  • Fortify Spell, where applicable.
  • Arcane Affinity for the MP discount.
  • Spell Combat (Sorcerer), Melee Combat (Mortal), Hand-to-Hand Combat (Mortal) and Boxing (Mortal). Depending on the combat tree of the spell, you get accuracy bonuses (and damage, in the case of Boxing).
  • Conjure Sinews, Sharp Vision and Tiger claw spells to improve accuracy or damage.
  • Combat Clarity, Strength and Typed Affinity potions for better accuracy and/or damage.
Excluded effects
  • Spellwand, Pattern Weaver (Sorcerer) and Set Spelltrap (Sorcerer), as these spells cannot be put into gems.
  • Magical Reserves, the damage bonus is included in the base damage numbers of the spells.
  • Deep Spellcraft (Sorcerer), the new spells can't be turned into Arcane damage, nor turn into autohit or AoE spells, nor hit wards for Arcane damage.
  • Capstone effects from knowing the spell tree. These new spells have unique flavor that do something more or different than the capstones.
  • Eldritch Mixing. The spells are a signature of a given element tree, so they can not be mixed with other elements.
  • Font traps. The spells are too powerful - needing only 3 instances of tapping a font to kill someone with it later is too much.
The new spells
Right then, the juicy bit - what do the new spells actually do? It varies per element. Without further ado:
Piercing: Stone Lance
  • Combat tree: Spell attack, +10% accuracy
  • Cost: 2 AP, 12 MP
  • Damage: 30
  • Special: Ignores a third of all soak and resistances, making it good against soaky targets.
  • Inspiration: https://youtu.be/1gMv7PL04e8
Slashing: Petal Storm
  • Combat tree: Autohit
  • Cost: 2 AP, 10 MP
  • Damage: 4 x 6
  • Special: Hits 4 times per attack hitting for 6 damage each, causing status ticks to go away faster. Keep in mind, Fortify Spell ups this to 4 x 8.
  • Inspiration: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KhB6kZuGp14
Impact: Nexal Smash
  • Combat tree: Touch (so melee or hand-to-hand), +10% accuracy
  • Cost: 2 AP, 14 MP
  • Damage: Effectively 10-30
  • Special: Deals 3 points of bonus damage for each point of soak on the target (including forts!), up to 10 soak. 10 damage for a 0 soak target, (13 damage -1 for soak = 12) damage on a 1 soak target, up to (40 - 10 = 30) damage on a 10 soak target. On a 15 soak target it would be (40 - 15 = 25) damage.
  • Inspiration: Blunt weapons in Mount & Blade, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQEx4nhhQ6w
Cold: Flash Freeze
  • Combat tree: Spell attack, +10% accuracy
  • Cost: 2 AP, 14 MP
  • Damage: 30
  • Special: Deals a 5/20 AoE damage to non-faction targets other than the primary target.
  • Inspiration: https://2e.aonprd.com/Spells.aspx?ID=596
Fire: Fireball
  • Combat tree: AoE, 85% accuracy
  • Cost: 8 AP, 24 MP
  • Damage: 40/400
  • Special: All affected targets are afflicted with the "on fire" status effect, a 1 fire damage/tick effect that lasts for 3 status ticks (multiple instances are possible). Effectively can't be soaked (as it is already at 1 damage), but can be resisted to 0 (IB). Further, if you cast this in a stronghold that isn't your own, it deals 25 points of damage to fortifications.
  • Inspiration: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1Gs8WTddI4, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jar1LTxxAeM
Electric: Lightning Rod
  • Combat tree: Spell attack, +10% accuracy
  • Cost: 2 AP, 12 MP
  • Damage: 30
  • Special: Summons a rainstorm on the outside of the tile (regardless of whether the attack is a hit or miss), which increases all electric damage dealt by 20% (both inside and out). Also obscures vision like the mist effect does. Lasts 10 minutes.
  • Inspiration: https://2e.aonprd.com/Spells.aspx?ID=898
Death: Seize Heart
  • Combat tree: Touch, +10% accuracy
  • Cost: 2 AP, 14 MP
  • Damage: 25
  • Special: Applies the "Heart Seized" status effect on the target, which works the same as Soul Fray (target dies if at lower than 15% HP). Combining this effect with Soul Fray makes a target die at 30% or lower HP. Lasts 5 status ticks.
  • Inspiration: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YoZtHY0mbII
Acid: Acid Arrow
  • Combat tree: Spell attack, +10% accuracy
  • Cost: 2 AP, 14 MP
  • Damage: 25
  • Special: Applies the "burning acid" effect, dealing 2 acid damage per tick for 10 status ticks. Can be soaked/resisted down to 1, or resisted to 0 (WM). Can have multiple instances applied at the same time, theoretically up to 10 times (because the first instance will have expired).
  • Inspiration: https://2e.aonprd.com/Spells.aspx?ID=2
Conclusion
As mentioned, I'd like feedback before I start building the skill and spells, so have at it - balance numbers, flavor/lore considerations, general comments, what-have-you. Please let me know what you think!

EDIT:
- Changed spell names per Repth's suggestions
- Changed attack trees to be more Wizard-like (Archery/Firearms -> Spell attacks)
- Tweaked MP costs
- Tweaked Touch Heart's effect to have a lower chance of causing code spaghetti
- Added interactions with Tap Font and Eldritch Mixing

EDIT 2:
- Lowered Piercing Lance's damage to 30 (from 35), and the soak/resistance ignoring part reduced to 33% (from 50%).
- Lightning Rod's effect is now guaranteed (from 33%), but lowered the base damage to 30 to compensate.
- Fireball and Acid Arrow now have multiple instances of their effect possible.
- Flash Freeze's damage buffed to 30 (from 25).
- Changed Petal Storm to be 4x6 damage (instead of 3x10).
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Repth
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Re: Upcoming Wizard skill: Eldritch Mastery

Post by Repth »

I just have name suggestions! Take 'em or leave 'em.
NearNihil wrote: Wed Mar 08, 2023 3:46 pm
Cold: Winter Blast - Flash Freeze, Hoarfrost, or Bomb Cyclone

Electric: Draw Lightning - Lightning Rod

Death: Grasp Heart - Seize Heart
Karlito
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Re: Upcoming Wizard skill: Eldritch Mastery

Post by Karlito »

Not too sure about putting stuff behind combat trees Wizards are unlikely to take and don't have other support for like archery and throwing, but otherwise I like the concept.
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TheGoof
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Re: Upcoming Wizard skill: Eldritch Mastery

Post by TheGoof »

As above, tying to combat trees means skill rebuilds for folks already invested in a particular element/attack type, though if the abilities were modified by the presence of skills like GunWiz or Spellwand that'd be very entertaining (if extra work on Dev end). That aside, GIMMIE GIMMIE I WANT IT
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sekki
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Re: Upcoming Wizard skill: Eldritch Mastery

Post by sekki »

Can this not be a child of eldritch mixing? What if it was exclusive with eldritch mixing (although that is somewhat predicated on making eldritch mixing better :p)

Kinda like a breath vs depth kinda thing.

+1 to these being either touch spells or off the spell combat tree for accuracy.

Edit: I feel the MP might be a little high for some of these (like winter storm, stone lance and smash). Since they cannot be placed in spellgems you’re only going to be able to cast even the non-aoe ones like 4-5 times before running out of mana (assuming you use some mana on bash). For a class that depends on mp to do anything at all it might be better to charge a little extra ap instead of the extra mp?
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NearNihil
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Re: Upcoming Wizard skill: Eldritch Mastery

Post by NearNihil »

Repth wrote: Wed Mar 08, 2023 4:40 pm I just have name suggestions! Take 'em or leave 'em.
I'll take 'em!
Karlito wrote: Wed Mar 08, 2023 5:01 pm Not too sure about putting stuff behind combat trees Wizards are unlikely to take and don't have other support for like archery and throwing, but otherwise I like the concept.
Karlito wrote: Wed Mar 08, 2023 5:01 pm Not too sure about putting stuff behind combat trees Wizards are unlikely to take and don't have other support for like archery and throwing, but otherwise I like the concept.
Fair point; they're now either Autohit, AoE, Touch, or Spell attacks.
sekki wrote: Thu Mar 09, 2023 3:35 am Can this not be a child of eldritch mixing? What if it was exclusive with eldritch mixing (although that is somewhat predicated on making eldritch mixing better :p)

Kinda like a breath vs depth kinda thing.
My line of reasoning is that the Eldritch something line of skills focuses on doing stuff with the elements. Mixing needs a little spicing up though, but I haven't figured out what that would be yet. Maybe knowing all of the other elements without having to learn a spell in the tree first?
sekki wrote: Thu Mar 09, 2023 3:35 am Edit: I feel the MP might be a little high for some of these (like winter storm, stone lance and smash). Since they cannot be placed in spellgems you’re only going to be able to cast even the non-aoe ones like 4-5 times before running out of mana (assuming you use some mana on bash). For a class that depends on mp to do anything at all it might be better to charge a little extra ap instead of the extra mp?
True, the MP costs are pretty high. I've tweaked the numbers a little bit to be more consistent with the expected damage.
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squib
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Re: Upcoming Wizard skill: Eldritch Mastery

Post by squib »

Would the acid arrow effect stack for multiple instances (like drained or chilled)? If it doesnt stack like that, I can see this arrow having the same drawback and the capstone not being very effective against certain targets (anyone with 1 acid soak)
Klapaucius
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Re: Upcoming Wizard skill: Eldritch Mastery

Post by Klapaucius »

Specific comments:

I can't see any situation in which nexal smash is better than piercing Lance, which doesn't seem ideal. Piercing Lance is just a lot better for all soaks.

Piercing Lance damage is high, the effect is already very strong.

Lightning rod: just annoying to have this gated behind rng, since you only need it to proc once then I assume you're probably moving onto regular attacks. 6 ap/36 mp for an area skill is very high, though you do get a good amount of damage. Getting trolled by this skill eating all your mp and still not proccing would be frustrating.

Fireball: balance seems off compared to other aoe. 3 extra damage per target affected is okay, that comes out to a bit more than 10% extra damage assuming the ticks get used up, which incidentally won't actually happen for pure aoe kills. The mp cost is quite high.

Cold flash freeze: this seems underpowered for the cost. 5/20 aoe is about 1/10 of an actual aoe or less. And because max damage is so low even low soak will cut into the output significantly. The value is about 0.8 ap and 1.4 mp when compared to other options. Imo instead increase the aoe to like .. 10/50 or increase the base damage to 30.

I do have some broader thoughts too which I might come back to
SaltedSalmon
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Re: Upcoming Wizard skill: Eldritch Mastery

Post by SaltedSalmon »

It might be a bit regrettable to not have the right tree to abuse the Eldritch Mixing spells, but with Refunds now it should be fine.

As for the spells themselves:
Isn't Petal Storm a bit underpowered? Its supposed to be for tanks, but doing 3 attacks of 10 damage with a mundane damage type against a tank means you're 3 damage total. Only saving grace is that its the cheapest one, but is that even good enough...

Stone Lance is better than Nexal Smash, and fulfills the same niche.
Related to that: Nexal Smash is Impact. Aren't mundane damage types supposed to be bad against tanks? I guess that ship is sailing though, specially with Piercing's effect.
Klapaucius
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Re: Upcoming Wizard skill: Eldritch Mastery

Post by Klapaucius »

Why do you say petal storm is for tanks? That seems exactly untrue, since it scales the best with low enemy soak.
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