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Virilneus’ GS4 Idea Book » Sorcerer Training Costs

Virilneus’ GS4 Idea Book

May 14, 2009

Sorcerer Training Costs

Filed under: Game Balance, Sorcery — Virilneus @ 7:38 pm

I believe sorcerers (and wizards) should have training costs changed. I have no idea how the current situation we have was created, but it is obviously unbalanced, and should be rectified.

It is my belief that professions that hunt in equivalent ways should have equivalent training costs. This is not the case. Among the 4 pure professions there are serious differences in training costs where some pure professions have cheap skills and thus can train in them more, or pick up more hobby skills, and others have far less flexibility. I won’t even try to add in non-hunting experience gain 2 pure professions have. That is a balance issue unto itself.

PHYSICAL TRAINING COSTS
Aggregate Total for all weapon/armor/cm/dodge/moc skills

Cleric: 128/57
Wizard: 158/66
Empath: 159/68
Sorcerer: 160/68

Remember as well, that clerics and empaths need less overall ranks in armor use to wear heavier armor, thus, it is a double bonus (or double penalty for wizards and sorcerers).
UTILITY TRAINING COSTS
Aggregate Total for all pt, first aid, survival, climb, swim

Empath: 13/2
Cleric: 18/3
Wizard: 21/3
Sorcerer: 21/3

MAGICAL TRAINING COSTS
Aggregate total for HP, Spell Aiming, MIU, AS.

Wizard: 2/7
Empath: 3/9
Sorcerer: 3/9
Cleric: 3/10

MANA CONTROL TRAINING COSTS
This one is harder to calculate, because of hybrid status. Mana control can function as a lore skill, so a wizard can train in 1 control and get benefit (after the lore review) to 3 circles. Same with clerics. Empaths to two circles, a sorcerer to one each, or one and a half each. As such, on that sorcerers pay the most for the least benefit. But ignoring that. Looking at mana return benefit…

Cleric: 900 MTPS for +15 mana return per pulse.
Wizard: 1200 MTPS for +15 mana return per pulse.
Sorcerer: 1200 MTPS for +15 mana return per pulse.
Empath: 1200 MTPS for +15 mana return per pulse.

Anyone surprised clerics actually have 25% less mana control training costs for the same mana return benefit? Are they really the most mana returning profession? The mana control portion of alchemy further tilts it towards clerics (and wizards) by existence of a hybrid penalty.

LORE TRAINING COSTS
On this one you can’t just look at cost, you have to look at cost benefit. A wizard spends 0/6 to benefit 3 circles. A cleric spends 0/6 to benefit 3 circles. An empath spend 0/12 to benefit 3 circles. A sorcerer spends 0/20 to benefit 3 circles.

What is further ridiculous with this, is sorcerers as well spend more on spiritual lore than empaths, AND WE’RE BOTH SUPPOSED TO BE HYBRIDS! A sorcerer spends 0/7 for each minor circle he is a part of, an empath spends 0/6 for each.

THE CHALLENGE

I challenge any GM to post a reasonable justification for this disparity. I did not make these numbers up. These are not my opinion. This is basic math that does not add up. Balance, by definition, is would mean that if you take from one area, you give to another. There is no give here, not for sorcerers. What benefit do we get for these much higher costs? We get to hunt in guarded? Please, almost every profession does that now, including bards and rangers. Such an excuse might have flown 12 years ago when we were the only profession (outside of clerics on undead) that could reliably hunt like that, but that was 12 years ago, things have changed, why have all these restraints on our profession not changed? We’re hindered because from-guarded CS hunting is so overpowered? Wake up and smell the dead ithzir, everyone hunts like that now. Have you seen bane/smite, boneshatter, immolation?

But go ahead, explain to me why sorcerers should have such higher costs. Tell me what we are getting in exchange.

THE SOLUTION

I will not ask you to nerf clerics or empaths. It won’t happen, I know it won’t happen. I will not ask for it. Instead, I ask you to help wizards and sorcerers BY LOWERING OUR TRAINING COSTS (mostly sorcerers, a little wizards). Since you are only lowering costs this doesn’t really require reallocation. You’d simply log in, and get free TPs from the adjusted costs. Well, not really “free” TPs. That is a bad word to use. Reimbursed TPs, reimbursement for the equivalent hunting you did compared to other pure professions.

Wizards first. Wizards should have 0/1 in MIU and BE ABLE TO TRIPLE (currently 0/1 and only double). Wizards should have 0/2 in AS. Currently 0/1. This is for consistency, and I’m making up for this by asking you lower wizard HP costs to 0/3, and EMC to 0/3. This should offset the ridiculously cheap physical skills of the two spiritual pures.

Now sorcerers. IT IS WRONG THAT WE SHOULD HAVE THE HIGHEST PHYSICAL AND HIGHEST MAGICAL AND HIGHEST UTILITY TRAINING COSTS. There needs to be sufficient adjustment so we’re not the worst in every category. Either that or, our spells all need big uptweaks as a tradeoff for what we pay for them. It is horrible game design to have a profession have universally higher training costs with no trade off.

So, here is what I propose.

1. Lower AS to 0/1 and let us triple. (making us the best in AS, something we deserve)
2. Lower HP to 0/3 (tying us with wizards here as best, which we both deserve, considering the shafting we get on physical stuff)
3. Lower Elemental lore to 0/6 and spiritual lore to 0/6 (a decrease of one, to give parity to what empaths pay)
4. Lower sorcerer lore to 0/5 (minus 1, it sucks enough, might as well make it cheaper, and we only get 1 circle of benefit out of it, which means it is the least beneficial lore in the entire game, no other lore, NO OTHER LORE, affects only 1 circle). I think I could even justify this going to 0/4 or 0/3 but I’d accept 0/5.
Would this make sorcerers the best in any one area? NO. Clerics would still be the best in physical skills, we’d be the worst. Empaths would still wipe the floor on utility skills. We’d be the worst. Wizards would still edge us out on core magical skills (thanks to a 1 PTP edge on spell aiming, fair enough), but we’d be 2nd, and ahead of empaths and clerics as a tradeoff for their leads in the aforementioned areas. We’d still have the worst cost/benefit lore ratio, but it’d not be _as_ bad. And mana controls, on the proxy-lore benefit scale, we’d STILL have the worst cost/benefit ratio. On the mana return scale, clerics & wizards would be tied for first, us and empaths would be tied for second (or last, as it were).

But what this would do, outside of course of letting the players of sorcerers know we’re not red headed step children, is allow more diversity in our profession by freeing up TPs for hobby skills that most of us, quite frankly, cannot afford.

AN ADDENDUM

I hope you guys are thinking about these issues when you lay out the costs for Savants. If you just do it based on “how you visual the profession” without looking at balance, you’re only going to upset more players. A new profession that not only diverts needed coding resources from us, but also has cheaper costs than us (and they’re bound to have cheapo brawling anyways, so its probably going to happen)… ya, that’d probably drive more sorcerers to quit.

4 Comments »

  1. Does Simutronics even still have employees to update content like this?

    As I understood it, increased rates ostensibly funded HJ and actually funded the engine behind it, which they have been selling off with no intention of actually releasing HJ (let alone developing their text-based games)…or is this incorrect?

    Comment by Chris — May 22, 2009 @ 12:38 pm

  2. It absolutely cracks me up that apparently we were given higher costs for our secondary lores than empaths were because we already had sorcerer lore which was cheaper and they thought they needed to balance that with our other lores. Talk about an epic failure of the human brain. The entire existence of sorcerer lore is a training point penalty on the profession, to balance it you need to drastically cut training point costs, not increase them. How much thought was this even given? Not much apparently.

    This reasoning failure is akin going to a grocery store and buying the half gallon of milk instead of the gallon of milk because it is half the price and thinking you just saved 50%. Focusing on cost in lieu of benefit ftl.

    Comment by Virilneus — June 29, 2009 @ 11:36 am

  3. Here are some numbers Kithus compiled. They contain differences in training costs for skills BOTH professions may be expected to train in, and list all costs that are not identical.

    Wizards vs Sorcerers:
    1/0 less for armor use
    0/1 less for edged weapons
    0/1 less for blunt weapons
    1/0 less for thrown weapons
    0/1 less for arcane symbols
    0/1 less for magic item use
    1/0 less for spell aiming
    0/1 more for elemental mana control

    Clerics vs Sorcerers:
    7/0 less for armor use
    0/2 less for edged weapons
    0/2 less for blunt weapons
    0/4 less for two-handed weapons
    0/5 less for ranged weapons
    0/3 less for polearms
    4/1 less for brawling
    3/3 less for two weapon combat
    2/2 less for combat manuvers
    0/2 less for multi-opponent combat
    3/2 less for ambush
    1/0 less for physical fitness
    1/0 less for first aid
    0/1 more for spell aim

    Empaths vs. Sorcerers:
    1/0 less for two-handed weapons
    6/0 less for physical fitness
    1/1 less for first aid
    0/1 more for ambush

    As you can see, all three pure professions end up with an advantage over sorcerers, and this doesn’t even consider the lore issue that screws us over more.

    Comment by Virilneus — July 6, 2009 @ 7:12 am

  4. […] faith. We’d all done comparisons showing what professions actually need to train in, in fact he read my posts on the subject prior to his post (supposedly) and I go into great detail not just on the results, but the […]

    Pingback by Virilneus’ GS4 Idea Book » The Biggest Idiot in Gemstone — August 24, 2009 @ 7:56 am

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