I’m still alive and well (albeit still unemployed) as I make a quick note of recent events and updates. I’ve been distracted by an old friend, a game I loved before DDO. More on that another time.
First off, congratulations to Standing Stone Games. I, for one, welcome our new game overlords.
You can read more about the reincorporation online, but basically, it seems our developers and producers have spun themselves off from their WB Games-owned Turbine entity and have a much freer space to develop and profit. Looks like some old hands lost over the years might also be returning.
I wanted primarily to write on Update 33 Patch 2, arriving tomorrow (Wednesday 12/21). Many course corrections and major changes to polish off the major Monk enhancements and handwrap/weapon update of Update 33.
Here are the general Monk adjustments. Items that are great (and there are several) are in italics.
- Monk finishing moves now incorporate Stunning bonuses into their DC calculations.
- Ki Shout has had its cooldown reduced to match Intimidate, and its Ki cost lowered slightly. (Lynncletica is very happy.)
- Meditation of War is no longer considered a Defensive stance.
- Flash Bang should now add Stunning DCs.
- Ki Bolt now scales with 3x Melee Power, and adds Stunning DCs.
- Incinerating Wave now scales with 3x Melee Power, and adds Stunning DCs.
- Cauldron of Flame’s damage has changed to 1d2 Fire Damage per Monk level, scaling with 2x Melee Power, at each tier, to a maximum of 10d2 per Monk level before scaling. In addition, while wielding a quarterstaff inside your Cauldron of Flame, you gain +20 PRR, +10 MRR, and +15% Dodge that ignores Dodge Cap.
- Serenity grants an additional boost to Cauldron of Flame: While wielding a quarterstaff inside your Cauldron of Flame, you gain +5 to hit and damage, and a +1 Critical Multiplier.
- Serenity now grants a +15% attack speed with quarterstaves. (About time.)
- Henshin Mystic has a new Tier 5 ability called Henshin Staff Training: +3 to hit and damage with quarterstaves.
- Lighting the Candle now deals about twice as much damage as before.
- Void Strike now adds +1 to Critical Threat Range and Multiplier with its attack.
- Shintao’s Touch the Void Dragon now also passively grants +1[w] with handwraps or while unarmed.
- Shintao’s To Seek Perfection now also passively grants +2[w] with handwraps or while unarmed.
- Ninja Spy’s Diversion now also grants +5 Sneak Attack Dice for 20 seconds when activated.
- Ninja Spy’s Ninja Master now also passively grants +5 Sneak Attack Dice.
Ninjas come awfully close to Rogue-level sneak attack powers with things like this, and I’m not complaining. My new SA-happy Shadowbow Ninja archer will deal more damage.
- Diversion and Touch the Void Dragon no longer share a cooldown.
- Hit boxes for monks with handwraps have been restored to their previous size.
A very annoying bug squash here that should now allow handwrap-wielding Monks to massage Lolth’s incredible abs with our fists once more in “Caught in the Web” without falling to our doom.
- Every Light Casts a Shadow should no longer give negative levels to friendly members of your party.
- Spring Attack is now a Monk Feat at level 6.
The Combat adjustments are a bit interesting for ranged characters. Not sure how this will work with my snipers, especially the Diversion-loving Pynthetica:
- We’ve corrected a long-standing bug where groups of enemies would not aggro correctly. Players will find that they can no longer use a ranged attack to pull singular enemies from a group without aggroing nearby enemies.
Now, I’m fine with this change as it is more realistic. But, hopefully, the other aggroed enemies don’t immediately come after you, but first note the noise, look, and investigate, buying you time.
- Bluff and Deception will no longer cause bosses and enemies using ranged attacks or spells to turn around. This corrects an issue where ranged enemies would stop attacking after being bluffed or affected by Deception, and improves the enemy combat experience. Red-named bosses are still affected by sneak attack damage vulnerability.
Another change that’s fine, as long as the Bluff effect still procs and damage is still happening, and hopefully, enemies are still slowed or hesitant in some way. However, this might change the nature of my Zen Archer powers. I’ll have to test and see.
- Raid and named bosses can no longer be champions.
Nothing’s more scary than to see Lolth wearing a crown. She’s already crazy as it is.
Other good stuff:
- Many old loot effects that were made specifically for old-style handwraps now work properly on updated handwraps.
- Vampirism and Lesser Vampirism now provide their proper effects on handwraps.
- Heroic and Legendary Greensteel handwraps are now available!
How about that? I’ve been craving some Triple-Positive disruptors for Deathwyrm.
- Scaling Melee and Ranged Alacrity 10% is now applying its proper bonus.
Last but not least is the ability to immediately transfer your characters to and from other servers. This costs a bit but might help in the server balance right away. I might use it to move a few beloved characters I made on Cannith (of which time prohibits me to occupy often enough now).
More to come for my last post of the year next week, if not sooner.