[.11] Channeling Playtest Experiences

Draven

Count
Seattle Staff
Marshal
Hey everyone!

Channeling is a skill that I’m a bit passionate about, because of the following reasons:

1) I love that a player can effectively be a “different kind of caster.” I really like that it basically provides an entirely new way to play the game.

2) On the other hand, it feels like a “Newbie Trap” to me. I can see someone figuring out a low-level character and see Channeling as a fast investment to high-end damage (32 XP means 8 in pre-reqs and 200 Points per day, which sounds like a lot when you’re completely new to Alliance). As someone who felt like having Racial Slay for his E Caster would be awesome, and someone who has seen a new player completely quit the game because of their experience with alchemy that they invested in early (we had a lot of things immune to alchemy at the time), I hate Newbie Traps.

That being said, I’m hoping that there are people who have invested in it heavily during their playtest events and can let me know how it went. I don’t mean “I picked up a couple as supplemental healing,” but “I got myself a gigantic pool of it and went wild.”
 

Alkalin3

Administrator
Chief Technology Officer
South Michigan Staff
Marshal
Take a look at https://alliancelarp.com/forum/threads/dragonfall-event-feedback-what-are-your-thoughts-about-the-2-0-rules.38356/

-I did a 1000 pt Earth Channeling build this weekend as my play-test build (with just 1 spell):
  • Very very easy to back pack heal, cause the inchant is very fast (X Elemental Healing)
  • Mows down armored targets (Undead or Others wearing armor); Elemental Defenses don't seem as common
  • I thought 1000 points was enough, but I tapped on the first logistics. This is mostly from healing from group up to full after each encounter, which is commented as a weird feeling (in a good way I think) cause we are used to 1 body and then living in our armor after this first mod or two.
  • You feel more comfortable throwing healing at bleeding people from across a distance without feeling like you wasted a very limited resource, bonus points if it is a rogue and they spring up behind the enemy.
  • You have no (short of consumables, which I was not prepared with) dealing with take-outs or debuffs. These effects seem super common now (as a carrier more often then not).
  • Not totally sure I agree with Joe if Channeling should be Meditatable. I think there is alot of grey area how much you get back when you are already trying to keep a running total in your head of how much you used.
  • Not sure if I am a fan of hand mark being a high magic only; may be a good target ritual effect or skill that requires X scholar skill. This is from a perspective of pure channeling build though.
  • The lack of lifes being a Earth Channeler is concerning to me. It was offset for me this weekend cause we had a another full Earth Scholar with us. Good or bad; may encourage Goblin'd Spell Stores.
 

Alkalin3

Administrator
Chief Technology Officer
South Michigan Staff
Marshal
In general to me it feels almost good. I think being able to keep your damage low as a Celestial Caster is solid but, it's worse numerically then being a straight spell casters (for primary, I think it's a really great secondary choice, or for fighters).

If Channeling remains non meditatable, it could probably benefit from an efficiency bump, (I'm not too concerned about storm math), and I wouldn't mind seeing a few more powers that enabled it uses. Such as being able to Elemental Strike parts of your pool for Spellswords/Adepts.


That all being said, it's a lot easier to play the game being a straight channeler, and there's benefit there that shouldn't be dismissed. There were a few other full channeling builds, and the players appreciated how easy it was to play their character.
 

Tantarus

Squire
That all being said, it's a lot easier to play the game being a straight channeler, and there's benefit there that shouldn't be dismissed. There were a few other full channeling builds, and the players appreciated how easy it was to play their character.
This. My wife plays the game like once a year tops. Always struggles with incants because of that. I went out of my way to spirit forge her from earth to celestial a few years back and make her a wand. She had more fun at events being able to mostly just throw wand packets then she had in 10 years previous. In 2.0 She will likely just be all channeling pool. Simple play style. No fuss no muss.

I will admit this is alot more viable for celestial then earth, because the lack of life spells or cleanse effects cripples a healers functionality.

That said I believe formal should be made into a 100 build in scholar skills prereq as to open up High magic to pure channelers. Giving them access to channeling high magic, better arcane armor, etc etc.
 

Muir

Fighter
I agree. I see no game balance reason a pure channeler shouldn't have access to formal for an equivalent build expenditure.
 

Alkalin3

Administrator
Chief Technology Officer
South Michigan Staff
Marshal
I will admit this is alot more viable for celestial then earth, because the lack of life spells or cleanse effects cripples a healers functionality.
Have her go dual school!
 

Tantarus

Squire
I am probably just going to do a huge celestial channeling pool, and a small earth one for getting people off the ground. Though then she needs a wand and relic... Maybe not.
 

Alkalin3

Administrator
Chief Technology Officer
South Michigan Staff
Marshal
I am probably just going to do a huge celestial channeling pool, and a small earth one for getting people off the ground. Though then she needs a wand and relic... Maybe not.
I'm pushing real hard to just make it one item with flavors on it.
 

Alkalin3

Administrator
Chief Technology Officer
South Michigan Staff
Marshal
I actually just am a huge fan of letting players be creative. I like the relic rules. Let Celestial casters be creative too. I want to see people holding books, and orbs, and whatever.
 

Draven

Count
Seattle Staff
Marshal
Personally, my only concern with Channeling is that the pool seems super small.

I think it should be 50 per purchase, or at the very least the cost reduced to 2P/3S per purchase for Scholar, 3P/4S for hybrid caster. But that’s just my .02.
 

MaxIrons

Squire
Oregon Staff
Marshal
Damage/Healing math (for pure scholars):

Channeling - 3xp per 25 points, unable to be meditated back. That's 8.3 damage/healing per xp.
Evocation / Healing - 25 XP per 225 points, able to be meditated back until it lands. That's a full column at 9 damage/healing per xp.

This means that Channeling is strictly worse than spell casting in all ways except being elemental instead of spell damage, which is not particularly relevant in most situations. At 50 points per purchase, Channeling becomes better if you're able to land 55% of your thrown packets. You lose a great deal of versatility in return for channeling. I think a bump up to 50 pts is worth it. I also will say again that I think opening formals up to those spending 100 XP is a good idea to allow access to the _channeling focused_ high magic.
 
Last edited:

Alkalin3

Administrator
Chief Technology Officer
South Michigan Staff
Marshal
Evocation / Healing - 25 XP per 190 points, able to be meditated back until it lands. That's a full column at 7.6 per xp. 5 ^ 9
Where's your 190 come from It's 225 healing/damage per column? 5 points of healing per level. 5 + 10 + 15 + 20 + 25 + 30 + 35 + 40 + 45 = 225 points of healing. That's places it at 9 points of healing per column.

I'm interested about your math because I like it better haha.
 

MaxIrons

Squire
Oregon Staff
Marshal
Where's your 190 come from It's 225 healing/damage per column? 5 points of healing per level. 5 + 10 + 15 + 20 + 25 + 30 + 35 + 40 + 45 = 225 points of healing. That's places it at 9 points of healing per column.

I'm interested about your math because I like it better haha.
Came completely from my mistyping on my calculator. Oops! That makes the whole Channeling thing worse. Correcting the previous post to:

Channeling - 3xp per 25 points, unable to be meditated back. That's 8.3 damage/healing per xp.
Evocation / Healing - 25 XP per 225 points, able to be meditated back until it lands. That's a full column at 9 damage/healing per xp.

This means that Channeling is strictly worse than spell casting in all ways except being elemental instead of spell damage, which is not particularly relevant in most situations. At 50 points per purchase, Channeling becomes better if you're able to land 55% of your thrown packets. You lose a great deal of versatility in return for channeling. I think a bump up to 50 pts is worth it. I also will say again that I think opening formals up to those spending 100 XP is a good idea to allow access to the _channeling focused_ high magic.
 

Bruvah M.

Newbie
An additional note to keep in mind is the presence of storm spells within the game. A full collumn of spells turns into 520 points of healing if you change your spells above fifth level into lesser spell storms (and use the 9th level spell as a standard earth storm).

I thought the power of channeling came from its flexibility, not its raw output?
 
Last edited:

Polare

Count
Alliance Rules
Moderator
Seattle Staff
One advantage of Channeling over a similarly-memorized set of 9 spell slots is that it can be spent in much more flexible ways. The column you're comparing it against *must* be spent as 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45. The same XP worth of Channeling can be thrown as up to *40* separate packets. For Earth, that's 40 individual targets that can be brought up from "bleeding out" compared to a maximum of 9 with that spell column. For Celestial, that's 40 individual charges to throw out in a longer battle to do some damage and keep enemies occupied.

That flexibility in # of packets is a significant part of Channeling's benefit, especially if you look at what it's intended to be replacing (Wand charges) and should not be overlooked. Pure damage quantity is not everything.

-Bryan
 

Alavatar

Baron
Unless you factor in Storm spells and memorizing down. Then it is 5, 10, 15, 20, 8 x 10, 8 x 10, 8 x 10, 8 x 10, 15 x 10. You get 51 packets that way.

If you factor in Storm Augmentation (which isn't available for Channeling), you get even greater flexibility.
 

Alavatar

Baron
Or, alternatively, the flexibility of using Flexible Casting to memorize Utility spells, then Flexible Cast the Signature spell if/as needed. This would result in a 9 column contributing 7.4 damage per XP with the option of utility in lieu of damage. Perhaps Channeling was attempting to balance against the assumption that people would do that? And that Storm spells throw a wrench into the assessment?
 

DiscOH

Artisan
Not being able to cast life/memorize down doesn't seem very flexible.

+1 channeling needs help
 

Draven

Count
Seattle Staff
Marshal
Pure damage quantity is not everything.

-Bryan
The value that unlimited static damage has had in recent playtests appears to be evidence to the contrary, however. Pure damage quantity is absolutely the Most Important Factor.

Additionally, spell slots aren’t -just- pure damage. They offer utility, they offer sustained options in the form of Storms (which can be Augmented for greater effect), they can be affected by Potency, etc, etc.

The singular flexibility advantage offered by Channeling is the amount of packets you can ultimately employ. That doesn’t actually make you a better blaster or a better healer. You can pick up 40 people with that pool of 200, sure. But “not bleeding out” doesn’t mean “ready to take on a fight.”

The moment you try to commit seriously to damage or healing, your pool dies (that’s not numerical speculation, a player with a 1000 Pool of Healing described that experience in this very thread). The advantages of Elemental versus Spell aren’t non-existent, but they are niche. Auto-reflect constructs aren’t common, and I doubt they’ll be more so in 2.0. Spell Resists are a thing, but a C Caster can employ Storm spells to deal with that.

Channeling needs help to be competitive, unless it’s not supposed to be competitive.
 
Top