Doomed, Equipment, and Antimagic afterthoughts

Ahh, Doomed. For some reason, I've had a lasting love affair with the class. I like hate as a resource, I like spellcasters as my favorite spellcasters, and I like battlefield control and positioning.

But one thing that always kind of irks *twitch* me about them, is their equipment. Well that, and Antimagic.

See, Doomed for the -most- part are will based, and they don't have/use crits on their spells (exception, dark torrent), they don't use spellpower, and they have few spells that you actually use that even USE the magic stat for damage.

I mean, lets list what uses Will, damages, and its effects.

Willful Strike: Low/Moderate damage, large knockback, short cooldown. Low Cost.
Blast: Moderate Damage huge AoE, moderate/large knockback, daze, moderate cooldown. Medium Cost.
Unseen Force: Random strike aura, moderate damage/large knockback, chance to strike twice. Long Cooldown. High Cost.
Reproach: low/moderate damage spread between everything in range 3, with willcheck to damage. Short Cooldown. Low Cost.
Hateful Whisper: Moderate Damage Condition that spread on it's own. Basically, a cool mechanic AoE. Moderate Cooldown. Moderate Cost.
Agony: Condition, high damage total over 5 turns, with willcheck each turn to save. Short cooldown. Low Cost.
Madness: Adds 25% chance with scaling willcheck to reproach, hateful whisper, and agony (per turn on agony) to stun/daze/slow.

So, pretty much a full kit for damage, mainly things with short cooldowns, good damage overall, and good AoE. Good mix of costs. A pretty good kit.

Now, for Magic:

Creeping Dark: low/moderate damage, random style cloud AoE. Mainly used to trigger +~10% damage from Dark Vision, and to block mob LoS. Not reliable for damage. Moderate Cooldown. Moderate Cost.
Dark Vision: utility, if somethings in creeping dark it takes Xtra damge, also, you get scaling 'infravision' (it's not actually infravision) to see monsters with radius. Costless.
Dark Torrent: Beam of darkness spell, moderate/low damage, chance to blind and cause target to "forget" it's target. Moderate Cooldown. Moderate/low cost.
Dark Tendrils: A moving square of creeping dark pins a target in place, moderate/low damge, long cooldown. Moderate Cost.
Arcane Bolt: fire 4 bolts for moderate/low damage total arcane, at closest target. Moderate/low cooldown. Moderate/High Cost.
Vaporize: High(!) Damage, High Cost, Single target for arcane damage. Long Cooldown.

Ok so, here we've got an unreliable AoE damage (mainly used for it's utility), utility, a beam that's a little less than stellar, a spell that's mostly overshadowed by reproach because of cooldown, and it's madness benefits, and a single target decimator that's certain to cost you more hate than it earns. Or rather: Everything under magic has a higher cost, and if you're using it for damage, you probably wish you were using one of your will skills instead. Creeping Dark for damage? Use blast. Dark Tendrils for Damage? Use Agony. Arcane Bolt for damage? Use Reproach. Vaporize for Damage? Put them in a corner and use unseen force. Vaporize is the only one I really see a fair use for.

This is the point: most Doomed don't even really need magic. It's almost all about Will. And when you don't use crit, you don't use spellpower, and you mostly use mostly one stat for all of your damage, your secondary stat is mostly there for your utility skills... Equipment is trivial. Mostly, useless.

If I had to be a naked character I'd be a Doomed anytime, because they mostly just don't care what they're holding, or even if. You'll hold swords and shield just to get resists and retributive damage. Oh looks that one has higher resists and +wil? *tosses penitence for an iron dagger* Oddly enough I'll carry a sling every now and then because it has +%physical damage which benefits one whole tree they have. Doomed have very little equipment out there that actually appeals to them. There's nothing really that a Doomed sees and goes "oh look, that just made my day!"

And while I like that they remove that -need- for equipment element from the game, I almost more thoroughly dislike it. We need a Doomed Staff, Robe, /whatever. I don't want to find platemail with resists and throw it on because who cares about what crazy mage robes have on them. I don't want to hold a staff and know I should be carrying a shield. That's not what a twisted cursed spellcaster does. But it's what a Doomed does, and it feels disingenuous.

Itemization on a doomed is pretty much what has good resists, +will, and that's about it. It needs some more depth.

Personally I advocate changing them so that they use spellpower, with appropiate scaling. I don't think they need the buff per se, and maybe their base damages should be lowered because of it, but it'd encourage more players to actually invest in magic besides pumping Vaporize to "you dead!" levels. (I'm scared to face my clone in ____ because I know if I feed strengths, put them in creeping dark, and vaporize, I hit for ~1140 damage, and I'm capping with a shield at ~890. Resists? Feed strength will just eat them off).

Antimagic Afterthought:

The way things are built presently, since magic only provides utility effects, and you have a complete damage kit with willpower only investments, antimagic -is- viable. Which, is kind of odd for a twisted cursed spellcaster. Now, Antimagic may seem kind of odd, buttt... Deflection + Antimagic shield has some VERY interesting interactions. I'm talking about taking almost NO damage from spells. Your knockback and the statuses from the retributions line/madness definitely help keep you out of the frontline, means that there become 2 thinks only that you really fear: Archers, and Knockback Immune. I leveled and achieved most of my stuff with a Cornac Doomed maybe 4 months ago with antimagic. Corruptors couldn't hurt me anymore. I died to a vault of Greater Wyrms of Power (knockback immune) in the East after having completed most of the game content, I felt like a potential winner. Plus, when you don't care about equipment, it's a lot easier to swallow the antimagic pill.

Personally, I don't know how/which order of operations the deflection/antimagic shield gets processed in, but I suspect it's the wrong one. It feels like 300 damage inc (Ouch!), /2 to deflection split (drain that deflection) shield, 150 damage - antimagic shield, oh look you took sub 100. THAT's without factoring in resistances, of which doomed can pick and choose equipment for resists at leisure, and feed strengths can give crazy resists if you have an opportune target.

Anyways, off to play the game.

Another approach

Another way to go about Doomed itemization is to drop the magic bit and convert them over to Mindpower. Eventually we're going to need Mindpower equipment in the game for a few different planned classes. I'd like to see Summoners converted over as well.

If Doomed used Mindpower along with a Mindcrit function we could add items to the game for them easily and eventually have more then one class that can use it. Doomed to me really feel more like a dark psion then a dark mage. For one we have dark mages covered, corruptors and now necromancers. For two the magic is the bit that feels tacked on, not the mental powers.

@another approach

I very much agree with you. I think that's a good idea, but it definitely would affect the Lore and their status as Afflicted/Cursed. Cursed with psionic abilities, in the style of River Tam (of Firefly/Serenity)? Can't turn off the powers, barely controlled, latent psionic energy.

I don't think that's a bad idea at all. They make me think of haunted houses personally. Suddenly, Darkness! Things go flying around. I could see them pretty easily as a cursed psion, and the only thing that wouldn't wholly mesh is the darkness tree. And honestly, I'd gloss over it because everything else fits so well.

Psionics would be a good approach, and would move them over to Cunning, increasing focus on crits.

It'd even, if the designers wanted it, let you go the AntiMagic route without looking like a bleeding sore of lore violation.

Plus, the second stat would have a pervasive effect over all of their abilities, and would help mitigate the feeling of 'too many' stat points and what else do I invest in?

I like that idea.

Doomed and magic, etc.

Thanks for the comments, they are definitely helpful. I've been fixing up Cursed in my spare time and haven't looked at Doomed in a while. I was planning on turning back to it soon to address spellpower and weapons. I definitely think using mindpower/spellpower is a good idea. I was kind of hoping to scale off both will and magic somehow. I like that the class offers a lot of diverse talents, but it needs to balance them better to get people to use them all. Thematically I don't see a problem using either mindpower or spellpower (or both). Both Cursed and Doomed are intended to be creatures driven by will as much as anything else. So Doomed retains a part of its spell caster past but like you say its also like ghost in a haunted house, making things happen by desire and rage. That's why there is so much schizophrenia between will and magic based talents in the current design.

I haven't figured out what to do with weapons yet. Staff, dual-wielding shields, slings, huge ceremonial sword, who knows. It just doesn't seem to matter much. If I can't think of something clever then it will probably just scale spellpower off of staves.

Doomed and Magic Etc.


Just to toss some ideas out.
Ceremonial/sacrificial daggers if you want the dark/cursed mage style would be interesting. Maybe an ego provided by the fateful aura tree.

Staffs are an easy though.

Gem wielding as foci aren't a bad idea from the mindpower standpoint and the Mindslayer precedent.