Les Nouvelles du vendredi de NCsoft - 16 Mai 2008

Bonsoir, au menu, un plat de la semaine un peu spécial puisque la nouvelle du vendredi n'est pour l'instant disponible qu'en anglais, les develloppeurs nous font le rapport des choses qui, à nouveau vont changer au niveau de la classe des Tireurs d'Elite.

Bonne lecture aux bilingues.

 N.B.: La version traduite sera disponible très prochainement sur nôtre site

Hi everyone, Critters here. I sat down with Lee Ridout a couple days ago to talk about some of the issues brought up by the community with Snipers.

Some of the main concerns from the players that I discussed with him are:

  • Snipers are saying that they are still hurting from the changes to Called Shot 5.
  • Complaints of Shredder Ammo proc’ing too little, players do not like the unreliability
  • Players want Armor Piercing Shredder Ammo
  • Should you be able to one-shot kill something without buffs/debuffs?
  • What mobs/levels should I expect to be able to kill with a sniper rifle?
  • Snipers and new aggro system, how is this fair?

This was his response:

“Yup I’ve been reading those posts too.Lemme first quickly hit one of the issues:
  • Shredder Ammo (SA) and the new proc system. Who wants to spend 15 skill points on something and then get victimized by bad luck? No one. When it first hit Internal Test, we immediately recognized that the unreliability of the proc system would need to be adjusted to TR’s fast paced combat. This is already changed on PTS and is much more predictable/reliable.

Now… Let me get to all the other concerns.

I actively read the forums and often find great information there. I have seen the posts over and over about how ineffective Snipers have become… But then I log in to my live Sniper (I play the game as an ordinary player and have many T4 characters including a sniper) and when I play it, I have no issues with sniping or close quarters combat. Granted the Torqueshell Rifle (TSR) doesn’t work well in close quarters, but that is the con to the TSR and I do have other tools available to both help me survive and effectively kill my opponents. I know the Shredder Ammo-Chaingun combination is overpowered on Live right now allowing me to target and destroy armies of Bane with little to no risk.

Called Shot 5 (CS5) was unbalanced since the game went live. It was supposed to give 50% bonus, but was instead giving 150% bonus. Snipers invested 15 skill points into this and used it as their bread and butter skill. It was never intended to be used that way. One shot kills were supposed to be attained through maxing out the TSR skill and Target Painting (TP). CS5 was supposed to deliver that added oomph when it was needed. I mean, 50% damage that stacks with Rage is nothing to sneeze at. I remember when it was on Live watching Snipers walk up to a target 5m away, debuff them with CS5 and then annihilate the target. It was pretty funny to watch, but not very ‘Sniper’ like ;-).

Anyway… I think that if given the ability to respec and experiment with builds, Snipers would find that their class has many great templates to work from. We have already made some opportunities for respecs available to the player, and I hope they become easier to attain with the new prestige system. It might also help if I gave you some tips and tricks that could help Snipers adjust to the dramatic skill changes they have endured over the past few patches.

One more point before I start working on getting you those templates. We are currently doing a lot of play-testing in PvP. Currently in those PvP tests, Snipers control the pace of the fights. They absolutely dominate the battlefield. When TP hits you, it’s all about popping a health pack and finding a hole to hide in.”

Without further delay, this is what he gave me…

Lee’s Sniper Guide:

I use MMO key setup. You can actually find the client tweaks I use in the Newbie Guide that got published to the website a while back. Please read these as my ‘player builds’ and not my ‘Dev opinion of what players should do’. These are the builds that I find fun to play on live and during play-tests.

Lee’s level 35 Sniper (used in the balance testing also my live build is very much like this):

Skill and Attribute Allocation

  • 100% of Attributes spent on Spirit
  • Rage to 3
    • Every Soldier should have Rage 3… Rage 5 is reserved for those that group a lot.
  • Tactical Evasion to 4
    • The reason Ranger got ‘the big patch’ was because of their lack of survivability... This is that survivability… Gotta get it and use it.
  • Stealth to 1
    • Doesn’t really matter too much what armor I am wearing… If I snipe well, I don’t get hit a lot. However, this is where I would invest as I level up.
  • Shredder Ammo to 3
    • Shredder is the skill that Snipers should use as a damage boost to TSRs (yes I realize it doesn’t get all the Armor piercing, but it still helps). This skill is also a compliment to ALL weapons. Shredder Ammo and a Chaingun are extremely effective when you are forced into a close combat fight.
    • Dev hat on: This skill is still under heavy scrutiny as I don’t believe its potential has been fully explored and the more I learn about it the more I think further balance tweaks will be necessary.
  • Target Painting to 4
    • 5 is preferred but 4 is sufficient.You want to maximize the damage going to the health bar.
  • Called Shot to 5
    • 50% = nothing to sneeze at
    • CS1 is used for Keal and other large targets to keep them at optimal range.
  • Torqueshell Guns to 5
    • …of course…

At 35 you will have some points left over. I like Chaingun 3 if I can get it. 1 point in Net Gun can really be handy as well. Many bipedal bosses can be netted. Net them and then move behind them so they can’t return fire and open up on them with a Rage/Shredder Ammo/Chaingun.

Tray Load Outs
On Tool Bar 1 (used for most targets):

  • Slot 1 – Smoke Screen 4
  • Slot 2 – Target Paint 5
  • Slot 3 – Called Shot 5
  • Slot 4 – Shredder Ammo
  • Slot 5 – Rage 3

On Tool Bar 2 (used when attacking something I cant 1 hit like Stalkers):

  • Slot 1 – Smoke Screen 4
  • Slot 2 – Target Paint 5
  • Slot 3 – Called Shot 1
  • Slot 4 – Shredder Ammo
  • Slot 5 – Rage 3

On Tool Bar 5 (my consumable tray… and if you aren’t using Crit Wave you aren’t playing a Sniper ;-):

  • Slot 1 – Crit Wave
  • Slot 2 – Adrenaline
  • Slot 3 – Health Pack
  • Slot 4 – Armor Pack
  • Slot 5 – Trauma Kit

Check out the progression of the buttons. I have lined them up right to left so that the longest lasting effects come first. Something to note is that with this upcoming patch you get ‘target remembering’ so you won’t be breaking target lock with your self buffs. This is huge. Also, this is a Sniper build, but Sniping can’t be the only expected combat that you will get into. You will have to carry another weapon for those close combat situations. Using Smoking Smoke Screen and Shredder Ammo is a no brainer when dealing with those situations.

Lee’s level 35 ‘Gunner’

Snipers have always been the best gunner due to Shredder Ammo, and I think they still are. I don’t want to take away from those players that built a Sniper just to get the most out of their Chaingun.

Skill and Attribute Allocation

  • 100% of Attributes spent on Body
  • Spotter to 5
  • Rage to 5 (Yes your Spotter will get the Rage buff)
  • Shredder Ammo to 5
  • Chainguns 5

You can finish this build out by either adding in mitigation from Tactical Evasion (TE) or more damage from Fire Support (FS)… Reflective Armor is probably the best route to go for protection.

Tray Load Outs
On Tool Bar 1:

  • Slot 1 – Crit Wave
  • Slot 2 – FS or TE
  • Slot 3 – Armor Kit
  • Slot 4 – Shredder Ammo Ice
  • Slot 5 – Rage 5

On Tool Bar 2:

  • Slot 1 – Shredder Ammo Ice
  • Slot 2 – Rage 5
  • Slot 3 – Adrenaline Boost
  • Slot 4 – Crit Wave
  • Slot 5 – Spotter 5

On Tool Bar 5:

  • Slot 1 – Crit Wave
  • Slot 2 – Adrenaline
  • Slot 3 – Health Pack
  • Slot 4 – Armor Pack
  • Slot 5 – Trauma Kit

This is all about Chainguns and Shredder Ammo. But to make it even more fun, bring out a Chaingun Spotter and buff them with Shredder Ammo, Crit Wave and Rage 5. Use your Crit Wave once the Spotter is out then use an Adrenaline Booster so you have access to Rage 5. This is a crazy build and I do not do this on live so I really can’t vouch for its long term practicality, but it’s a blast to test with ;-)

More Tips and Tricks

Shredder Ammo
As I mentioned earlier, this skill has not been fully explored. Its damage doesn’t seem to be subject to standard range or cover mitigation and you can buff other players and pets.

Can I Snipe without Armor Piercing?
I asked myself this question during this exercise and set about finding a Sniper spec that didn’t rely on Target Painting. The design of Fire Support 2 & 4 was intended to be useful for Snipers so I tried timing a TSR shot with Fire Support 4. It worked well. Something that annoyed me in this though was that the range of Fire Support 2 & 4 forced me under 60m. I’ll be looking into this.

Group Viability
This topic has been raised quite a bit. I am not seeing why someone wouldn’t want a Sniper in their group. In our PvP play sessions (and this transfers directly to PvE as well) I found that Snipers pair fantastically with Engineers. Engineers tend to move to a point and setup camp. Snipers do, too. In our sessions, I paired with my office mate and we were very effective. Between his far- reaching turrets and my TSR we were effective killers. And with his Shield Extension, Multibot plus my constant Smoke Screen spam we were very hard to kill. Did I mention you can buff other players and pets with SA?

I hope this gives everyone some ideas of how to be a more effective Sniper. I also hope this sheds some light on how we see the class and also lets the community know that we are listening, reading, and paying very close attention.

Source : http://www.rgtr.com/community/community_news/feedback_friday_5162008.html

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