Project Gorgon Update Notes: April 26, 2019

Update Notes: April 26, 2019

Ilmari War Caches

Decades ago, the Crone Hegemony built massive bunkers in the Ilmari Desert, bunkers which have since been buried deep in the shifting sands. But what the wind hides can be unhidden…

Ilmari War Caches are mini-dungeons with level 50-60 solo monsters. Each War Cache is designed to be a quick solo adventure. Each time you start a War Cache quest, you’ll get a map that works much like a treasure map, except the treasure is an entrance portal. The map is used up when you enter — you can’t get back in if you have to leave, so you need to come prepared! (If you fail the quest you can just cancel it and get a new quest, but the next quest may send you to a different dungeon.)

However, these quests aren’t time-limited: you can log out of these dungeons and log back in later. You just can’t leave the dungeon and come back later, since leaving would fail the quest.

These are not instanced dungeons, so it’s possible for other players to be randomly sent to the same dungeon. Any quest items that come from monster loot are cloned for each person that loots it. However, since this is primarily a solo experience, all the “puzzle” mechanics are instanced. This means when you flip a lever to open a gate, only your version of the lever flips and only your version of the gate opens. We did this to ensure that other players can’t screw up your puzzle, intentionally or not.

Note that the “map fog” in War Caches erases itself when you leave, so if you repeat the war cache, you’ll need to map it again. (Clearing this fog does not earn Cartography XP.) This is our way of saying “don’t obsess over clearing every inch of map fog, just play!”

To get started with the War Caches, talk to Sir Johnson in Amulna.

We’d love to get your feedback on this experience! To report a problem with a particular quest, please refer to it by the indicator mentioned in the quest text, such as “War Cache T-1”.

Note: Because these dungeons aren’t instanced, and because we expect a lot of players will want to check them out immediately after the update, please expect some congestion at first and schedule your time accordingly.

Transmutation Cost Changes

We’ve changed the amount of Phlogiston and Durability consumed by Transmutation. Transmutation costs are now tied to the rarity of the item. This is generally a “buff”; costs are reduced in most cases. For reference, the rarity levels are Uncommon (green), Rare (blue), Exceptional (red), Epic (purple), and Legendary (gold).

Skill-Specific Effects:
When you transmute an effect associated with a specific skill (e.g. “Unarmed Base Damage +20%”), the cost now depends on the rarity of the item:

  • Uncommon and Rare: 5 Durability and 25 Phlogiston
  • Exceptional: 10 Durability and 30 Phlogiston
  • Epic: 20 Durability and 35 Phlogiston
  • Legendary: 25 Durability and 35 Phlogiston
  • Previously, the cost for all Rarities was: 25 Durability and 35 Phlogiston

Generic Effects:
When you transmute an effect that isn’t tied to a skill (e.g. “Max Health +10”), the cost now depends on the rarity of the item:

  • Uncommon and Rare: 5 Durability and 10 Phlogiston
  • Exceptional: 10 Durability and 15 Phlogiston
  • Epic: 15 Durability and 20 Phlogiston
  • Legendary: 20 Durability and 20 Phlogiston
  • Previously, the cost for all Rarities was: 20 Durability and 10 Phlogiston

In addition, the phlogiston cost is reduced for low-level items:

  • 15 less Phlogiston for items level 15 and under
  • 10 less Phlogiston for items level 30 and under
  • 5 less Phlogiston for items level 45 and under

Hammer Changes

The Hammer skill was somewhat heavily-impacted by the damage-formula changes in the last update, so we spent some time refining this skill. We’ve restructured some of Hammer’s gear to have more favorable synergy with other effects, sometimes by changing small percentage bonuses to larger flat bonuses. We’ve also added a few new treasure effects (not listed here, as usual).

Concussion Debuffs:
Certain hammer treasure effects apply Concussion debuffs which makes the victim “prone to random self-stuns”.

  • These debuffs are now a bit more effective. (Also note that these three debuffs stack with each other, although that isn’t a new thing.)
  • One of the aforementioned Concussion debuffs has been moved out of treasure and added to the basic Rib Shatter ability

Rib Shatter:
This ability previously caused Trauma damage over time. But since Hammer doesn’t have much Trauma synergy (and doesn’t really have room for it in its treasure tables — Hammer has a lot of other stuff going on!), Rib Shatter has been revised. It is now a heavier-hitting hammer attack that also causes the target to be prone to random self-stuns — in other words, it applies the Mild Concussion debuff that used to be a treasure effect for Reverberating Strike.

Various treasure effects were adjusted or replaced as a result:

  • “Rib Shatter deals +220 Trauma damage over 10 seconds” => “Rib Shatter restores 40 Health to you”
  • Way of the Hammer: “For 10 seconds, all targets deal +15% Crushing Damage” => +35%
  • “Way of the Hammer boosts Slashing and Piercing Damage +17% for 10 seconds” => +34%
  • “Way of the Hammer boosts all targets’ Electricity Damage +20% for 10 seconds” => +35%
  • Way of the Hammer is now marked as a Signature Support ability for the purpose of buffs that affect Signature Support.
  • The treasure effect “Hammer attacks deal +16% damage but generate +48% Rage” was incorrectly boosting hammer Base Damage, not regular damage. This has been fixed, making the effect typically generate more damage in high-level builds.
  • The cost of Pound To Slag was tweaked slightly, and its Reuse Timer changed from 50s to 45s. (Some treasure mods were recalculated very slightly as a result of the shortened reuse timer.)
  • Latent Charge: Delayed electricity damage now occurs after 5 seconds, not 8 seconds.
  • The treasure effect “Pound To Slag hastens the current reuse timer of Look at My Hammer by 5 seconds” was previously available for all levels 50+, and did the same thing at all levels. There are now higher tiers of this effect which also boost Pound To Slag damage. All pre-existing versions of this effect are still the level 50 one, but new gear can obtain higher versions now. (Note that this effect is still not available in gear below level 50.)
  • “Reckless Slam deals +33% damage and taunts -360” => “Reckless Slam deals +64 damage and taunts -285” (It deals about the same damage but synergizes more nicely with other Reckless Slam mods.)
  • “Reverberating Strike restores 38 armor to you and taunts -275″ => ” Reverberating Strike restores 96 armor after a 6-second delay”
  • “Hurl Lightning Damage +39% and Reuse Time -1 second” => “Hurl Lightning Damage +94 and Reuse Time -1 second”
  • “Thunderstrike Damage +38%” => “Thunderstrike Damage +128”
  • “Reverberating Strike deals 70 direct health damage and applies the Mild Concussion status: target is susceptible to random self-stuns” => “Reverberating Strike Damage +85”

Lycanthropy

Lycanthropy is one of the oldest skills in the game, existing since “pre-pre-alpha”. It’s changed many times over the years of early development. (It went through a “tons of loot-activated combos” phase for a while, and a “super-fast-Bite” phase, and a “corpse-eating gives infinite healing” phase … Good times!) But after our last batch of changes (way back in 2017!) we switched our attention to other skills.

Returning, finally, to Lycanthropy, we’ve found that it has some overpowered damage combinations, but also had a bunch of crufty stuff. Some of that crufty stuff was left over from previous versions of the skill (like one Piercing ability in a skill that’s now focused on Crushing/Slashing/Trauma), or abilities that were prototyped in the 2017 revision but didn’t pan out like we’d hoped (like See Red, which just ended up being a random mishmash of buffs and heals). Other problems were due to engine limitations that are now fixed — the new version of Shadow Feint is much closer to what was originally imagined, but couldn’t be implemented at the time.

So there are a bunch of changes here which will take some time to get used to. These changes do nerf a common damage combo currently in use by max-level players, but despite that, we expect this will not feel like that big of a nerf after players adjust to the new skill. (And for many werewolves, the changes will be a net buff.) It’s also simply more fun to play than before.

General:

  • Sanguine Fangs damage changed from Piercing to Crushing.
  • “Sanguine Fangs suddenly deals 280 Trauma damage after a 12-second delay” => 8-second delay
  • Sanguine Fangs base direct damage increased. Some treasure effects revised as a result.
  • Blood of the Pack has a faster animation.
  • “Werewolf Claw, Double Claw, and Pouncing Rake Damage +22%” => ” Werewolf Claw, Double Claw, and Pouncing Rake Damage +50″
  • “All Werewolf attacks have a 31% chance to deal 64 Trauma damage over 8 seconds” => 47% chance
  • “Double Claw deals +114 armor damage” => “Double Claw deals +88 damage”
  • “All Werewolf attacks have a 31% chance to deal 64 Trauma damage over 8 seconds” => “Werewolf Max Health +35”

Skulk:
Skulk’s base damage boost was too high, and some of its loot was also too powerful.

  • Skulk: The “next attack” bonus damage is reduced significantly. (For example, Skulk 4 now gives +223, instead of +359.)
  • “Skulk grants you +35 Mitigation against all attacks” => +24 Mitigation
  • “Skulk causes your next attack to deal +70% damage if it is a Crushing attack” => +43% damage
  • “When Skulk is used, you recover 52 Health and all enemies within 10 meters are taunted -1375” => taunted -700
  • Skulk now has a faster casting time and a different in-use particle

See Red:
See Red had some treasure that was a little overpowered, but most of its treasure (and its inherent buff) were underwhelming. Since werewolves already have several other nice 30-second-reset abilities, See Red just felt a little out of place.

So in this update we’ve tried something new. The ability has been entirely re-envisioned: instead of a self-buff, it’s now a melee attack. Its treasure still provides a broad range of utility, though, and with the shorter reset time (10 sec instead of 30), it’s more versatile.

  • See Red is now a Trauma attack with a 10-second reuse timer and a lower Power cost.
  • See Red no longer buffs Piercing/Slashing damage.

All treasure effects revised:

  • “See Red restores 132 Armor” => “For 8 seconds after using See Red, all other Lycanthropy attacks deal 116 Trauma damage over 8 seconds”
  • “See Red grants you Melee Evasion +18%” => +14%
  • “See Red increases the damage of your next attack by +260” => +95
  • “See Red restores 54 Health and costs -20 Power” => “See Red deals +36 damage and Power cost is -16”
  • “See Red heals you for 85 health” => 38 health

Because the ability is now an attack, it needed more ability tiers than when it was a buff. The ability previously went up to See Red 4, and now goes to See Red 7. Sanja trains up to See Red 5, and the last two are taught from the Altar of Norala. If you had the old See Red 3 or 4, you still have them, but they are now for a lower level than before; you will need to obtain the new tiers.

Shadow Feint:

  • Shadow Feint: This ability is now a toggle. Use it once to enter “feint mode.” You will see a small indicator showing where you will teleport back to. Use again to teleport back. The range of the ability has decreased from 40m at all levels to 30/35/40m. Teleport time window shortened.
  • Shadow Feint Has faster animation, and the 1-second channeling delay was removed.

All Shadow Feint treasure effects were overhauled:

  • “After using Shadow Feint, your Lycanthropy Base Damage increases +36% for 30 seconds or until you are attacked” => “Shadow Feint raises your Lycanthropy Base Damage +36% for 20 seconds or until you trigger the teleport”
  • “After using Shadow Feint, your Sprint Speed increases +3 for 15 seconds and your next attack deals +120 damage” => ” Shadow Feint boosts the damage of your next attack +144 if it is a Lycanthropy ability” (note that the old version also only buffed Lycanthropy abilities; it just didn’t say so)
  • “Shadow Feint heals 130 health and 130 armor when you teleport” => “When you teleport via Shadow Feint, you recover 70 Health”
  • “Shadow Feint boosts your In-Combat Armor Regeneration +35 for 20 seconds” => “When you teleport via Shadow Feint, you recover 50 Armor and your Sprint Speed is +3 for 10 seconds”

Beast Metabolism:

  • Werewolves no longer need to be “out of combat” to eat corpses.
  • Inherent recovery-per-level from corpses is a little higher.
  • Previously, raising the Beast Metabolism skill only increased the duration of the recovery buff. It now also slightly increases the amount of healing and power recovered (per tick). This can be further boosted by treasure effects.

Norala Altar Buffs:

  • Boosted potency of Max Health buffs from +10/20/30/40/50 to +10/20/35/50/75 and added a sixth tier that goes to +100.
  • Boosted potency of Corpse Eat Healing buffs from +4/7/10/12/15/18 to +4/8/12/16/20 and added a sixth tier that goes to +25.
  • The fifth tier of Max Power buffs is reduced in cost from 3 tokens to 2.
  • The fifth tier of Physical Mitigation is reduced in cost from 2 tokens to 1.
  • Clarified labels to indicate that “Werewolf Damage Boost %” increases Base Damage.

Training:
It costs fewer altar points to learn abilities and raise your level cap at the Altar of Norala. This is still the primary way you’re expected to raise the skill level cap. (Keep in mind that the altar lets you buy level-cap increases before you reach your max level.) If you don’t want to wait until a full moon, you can now also train with Sanja in Kur. This is VERY expensive, however!

Sanja also temporarily teaches the new tiers of See Red, to help existing werewolves adapt to the changes. She will stop training these in the next update after the full moon — they are normally learned from the Altar of Norala.

Other Skill & Ability Changes

  • Bard: “All bard songs restore X Health [or Armor] to YOU every 4 seconds” => fixed bugs that allowed these treasure mods to get applied multiple times when switching songs.
  • Bard: Fixed a bug that caused some song-oriented treasure effects to apply themselves for 60 seconds after you manually toggled the song off.
  • Priest: The ability Invigorate claimed to restore Power but restored that amount of Health instead. Now it restores Power as intended. (Treasure effects were already correct, only the base Power healing from the ability was wrong.)
  • Spider: Due to changes to game systems, the treasure effect “Web Trap sets a teleport spot. If you are hit 6 times within 30 seconds you’ll automatically teleport back to that spot” no longer worked. Since it was not really very useful, we didn’t try to make it work and just replaced it. It is now: “While you are near your Web Trap, you recover 4 Power per second”.
  • Treasure effects that boost Spore Bomb, Stake the Heart, Fish Gut, and Crossbow attacks are more potent.
  • Many pieces of equipment that innately boost a damage type by a percentage (e.g. Spring Fairy Shoes, which have inherent bonuses to Nature and Electricity damage) have been buffed.

Monster Balance Changes

Monsters’ critical hits were dealing too much damage when their Rage Attacks critically hit, potentially killing a player instantly. This was most prevalent in Elites, but a few solo-oriented monsters were also too dangerous.

We’re adjusting things a bit: now when monsters’ Rage Attacks critically hit, they no longer deal +100% damage, but instead deal +50% damage and also heal the monster for 25% of its Max Health. If the monster is an Elite or Boss, Rage Attack crits also heal 100% of the monster’s Armor.
Non-Rage-attack crits continue to boost +100% damage as before.

Note that this change also automatically applies to any pets that have Rage Attacks (such as Necromancy minions).

Rage and Crit Bug Fixes
While working on critical hit damage for monsters’ Rage attacks, we encountered and fixed some other bugs related to critical hits and Rage.

Due to a data-processing bug, abilities that are supposed to generate extra Rage in enemies had stopped doing so. This was broken for a fairly long time (over 6 months), but is now fixed. Affected abilities should once again show this info in the ability info window.

This affects:

  • Most Fire Magic abilities
  • Battle Chemistry’s Toxin Bomb
  • Mentalism’s Mindreave
  • Archery’s Fire Arrow
  • Priests’ Flamestrike and Righteous Flame
  • Shambling Corpses’ health-reaping attacks
  • Skeleton Mages’ fire attacks
  • Pet Fire Walls’ attacks
  • The melee attacks of fiery pet rats

In addition:

  • Several Psychology abilities were not correctly marked as receiving critical hits from Phrenology; this is now fixed.
  • Crossbow abilities now gain the same chance to “critically hit” that bows do, based on your Anatomy skill and the target’s anatomy type. Crossbows gain a +50% damage mod when they crit. (This isn’t a bug fix, it’s a small power-up.)
  • Several monsters did not deal full intended damage with their Rage attacks: Worghests, Gazluk Elite Tacticians, Ratkin hammer-users

Gazluk-Only Balance Change:
Gazluk Keep continues to be our testing ground for changes to high-level group content, since it’s the highest-level group dungeon at the moment. We believe high-level group monsters need a large increase in Max Health to make group combat work as intended, so we’re experimenting with that in GK.

Elite monsters in Gazluk Keep now have between 3000 and 4000 extra health, and bosses have up to 6000 extra health. This is an interim step — it’s probable that group monsters need even more health than this, but other changes are probably needed before we crank it all the way up. So this is an experiment so we can gather feedback and see what the ramifications are.

Other Changes and Fixes

  • Desert Environments: If you are entirely out of hydration in the desert there is now a small chance every second that you will die of dehydration. Stay hydrated! Going into a NPC’s building, such as Arlan’s shop or Makara’s tent, will stop dehydration. In fact as a convenience, being anywhere within the city walls of Amulna prevents dehydration.
  • Fixed a bug with Crafted Nimble Boots and Crafted Nimble Pants, which evaded much more often than the listed times.
  • The tailoring recipes that add +1% damage of a particular type to shirts and pants have been changed to add +2% damage instead. This change is retroactive. (Note: there was a “round off” bug which could cause these recipes to effectively add +0.9% instead of +1%. This bug has been fixed for new uses of the recipe, but unfortunately it could not be fixed retroactively. So if your old gear added e.g. +5.7% damage, it now adds +11.4% damage, not +12% damage as you might expect.)
  • You can no longer use Practical Summoning to summon items that have less than 100% durability. (In other words, you can summon a pristine firkin, but not one with 70% durability remaining.) This is a temporary limitation. Previously, summoning partially-used items magically repaired their durability, which was unintentional.
  • You can no longer use the “Reuse Liquor Barrel” or “Reuse Beer Keg” recipes on NPC-brewed liquor (such as Spiked Egg Nog or Burn-Throat).
  • Brewing results that raise Max Armor for a particular race were incorrectly labeled as raising Max Health for that race. These now correctly say that they boost Max Armor. (Just to clarify, there are ALSO brewing results that raise Max Health for a particular race, and these are unchanged. The bug was that the armor-boosting ones were labeled as health-boosting.)
  • You can now right-click raw fish in your inventory and choose “Fillet Fish” to quickly bring up the appropriate fillet recipe. (Assuming you know how to fillet that type of fish, of course.)
  • Breaking down Treant Wood now requires Carpentry 50 instead of Carpentry 20.
  • Swapped the icons for Sunstone and Morganite to better match the gem descriptions, and the dye color they create.
  • Fixed a bug where malachite attuned to the Rabbit skill did not work correctly in recipes if the malachite was placed in the second gem slot.
  • Torgan correctly appreciates gifts of Awesome Metal Slabs.
  • Lady Windsong’s favor “Escaped Snail Meat” bestows a special druid ability Rotflesh, but if you were not eligible for the ability (generally because you didn’t yet know Rotskin 6, its prerequisite), you did not learn the ability. This is fixed retroactively, so if you’ve completed the quest the ability is now in your list. (But you still have to learn Rotskin 6 before you can actually use it!)
  • The Amulna residents Falkrin Overstrike and Alravesa the All-Hunter are still not fully written, despite having important roles to play in the future. They can now be found in the dining area above Selaxi’s shop, where they can at least have a drink while they wait.
  • The Guardian Rhino’s curse “Gored Pockets” changed from -10 Inventory to -5 Inventory. Players who had the old curse will find they are magically cured; this “free cure” is just a side-effect of an internal version number change, and not something we typically need to do when tweaking a curse. But hey: free cure! You’re welcome.
  • Sentient tornadoes are now more dangerous. They gain innate Projectile Evasion and Melee Evasion, and they have a different set of resistances and vulnerabilities than before. However, they are now very vulnerable to Burst attacks.
  • Fixed a bug that prevented Ice Cocks from breaking more than one toe at a time. (It was supposed to stack to x9 originally; it now stacks to x3 because 9 is too much.)
  • The “Slaughterer of Spiders” behavior badge was tied to generic animal killing, not spiders. (Meaning it was the same as the Slaughterer of Countless Animals badge.)
  • Made it easier to maintain the “Slaughterer of X” badges — they no longer require you to have killed more of that monster type than other kinds of monster. (They still have the requirement that you have killed 1000+ in your lifetime, and 500+ in the past 30 days real-time or 24 hours game time. Meaning that they “wear” off and you lose them if you stop murdering that type of foe.)
  • If you attempt to use an ability but the server doesn’t think the reset timer is up, the game client is updated to show the ability’s remaining time needed, rather than showing the ability as having been just-used.
  • Improved the performance of “floaty numbers” (damage and healing numbers). Lots of floaty numbers could cause framerate lag.
  • Also, floaty damage numbers for your character now float overtop your character’s head, like they do for other characters. Previously they floated down from the “portrait box” in the top-left corner, but it was very hard to notice them. If you prefer the old format you can enable it in Special Settings by typing the word PortraitFloaties into the text box.
  • Fixed bug where changing the font size of “Size of Combat Numbers (Self)” did not get saved to preferences.
  • Fixed map issues in Gazluk Keep (such as weird pointer direction and lack of map fog).
  • Optimized memory usage and loading times in Gazluk Keep. These changes should help people whose computers crash when loading into this area. Note: it’s now a VERY bad idea to use the “NoCull” Special Setting while in Gazluk Keep, because the Keep now relies very heavily on occlusion culling for performance.
  • Updated the contents of the Live Event Reward Chests (located behind the Serbule inn) so that newer types of equipment have a chance of being found in them.
  • Command /shop opens a web page to the Gorgon Shop.

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