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Toxicology and Serpents

With the change to Toxicology being available to everyone, it makes the venom skillset largely useless except for in certain edge case scenarios (granted, aside from loki and scytherus that can only be bitten).

With this in mind, I propose that the secretion/purge aspect of venoms be removed. Without transecretion, venoms is 90% useless because in the cases where you can actually bite with something rather than dstabbing you have to presecrete. Secreteing also messes up with the inline envenoming of dstab, as if you already have a venom secreted you need to purge before you can dstab. The flay change also reduced the effectiveness of venoms because instead of removing sileris you could flay shield/rebounding (which is the primary reason to use bite instead of dstab) and afflict faster than flaying sileris (which doesn't have the affliction attack) and biting.

Removing this and just making the syntax BITE player venom or SECRETE venom ON weapon would at the very least allow serpents to keep the RP of being the best at venoms. Scyth could be moved to trans and loki left near the top and that would still encourage people to trans because they are needed for several win conditions.
TaelCylaAntidasMarinaShirszae
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Comments

  • AntoniusAntonius Member Posts: 5,009 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    So basically what you're saying is get rid of Transecretion and make that the base functionality of Venoms?
  • KaihutiKaihuti Member Posts: 15
    Yes.
  • XithXith Member Posts: 2,602 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Well since Scyth and Nechamandra are already the trans skills I don't see why not.

    However I propose not knowing a venom prevents the serpent from using that venom on the same command as DSTAB. Gonna be important against Magi.
    I like my steak like I like my Magic cards: mythic rare.
    Kresslack
  • KaihutiKaihuti Member Posts: 15
    @Daeir‌ So are we allowed to talk about this now?
  • EigenEigen Member Posts: 21
    edited January 2015
    Daeir said:
    Yep.

    Still going to be a replacement for venoms at some point regardless. Nothing concrete has been shown to anyone yet (afaik), but there is definitely something, apparently akin to "deep subterfuge" whilst still keeping some elements of venom-oriented mastery that Serpents are typically renowned for.
    That sounds neat!

    I've noticed that the usefulness of Venom has been declining steadily with past updates. A good example is server-side curing eliminating effectiveness of illusions. A coincident effect of that was another use-case of venoms being eliminated: illusioning before biting (not that it was ever super useful since auto-systems). At this point Tecton could remove everything except shrugging and venoms that you can't dstab with and nobody would notice or care, so long as you could still dstab with the others.

    At this point Venom getting more useless isn't a bad thing in my opinion. It enables Tecton, et al, to improve the skillset or change it entirely, because it can't get much more useless. 

    That being said the useful parts of Venom are amazing and I really hope they don't do away with that. I love Scytherus, camus, shrugging, nech, etc. Loki's aight doe.
  • SantarSantar Member, Secret Squirrel Posts: 2,425 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    edited January 2015
    Venom serves essentially no purpose in combat beyond quickly delivering final afflictions vs. an already truelocked target that's spamming shield + rebounding.

    Probably needs a complete overhaul.

    image

  • JovoloJovolo EnglandMember Posts: 3,270 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Flay venom is basically a better bite, now. The entire skill is just scytherus and possibly voyria through shield/rebound if a person is locked already similar to what Santar said. I see no other use tbh. Could do with an interesting overhaul. Looking at the mass of abilities in Subterfuge would be a good start (warps!)
  • SantarSantar Member, Secret Squirrel Posts: 2,425 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    edited January 2015
    Well, the overhaul isn't too complicated.

    You don't need to make a new skill. You don't need to shuffle abillities from one skill to another. None of that is required.

    The problem is simple: Bite became useless. Thus venom became useless.

    You make bite useful, and venom is a fine skill again.


    Obviously this 'one immediate venom for one balance' format isn't going to work. I have some ideas how to shake up venom and make it situationally useful again.

    image

  • HeroseHerose Nova Scotia, CanadaMember Posts: 89 ✭✭✭ - Distinguished
    What if, when you bite someone who already is afflicted with that venom it becomes another venom through a reaction in your fangs.  If you bite someone with say vernalius and they already have weariness it actually afflicts with nausea.  The affliction could be hidden until a symptom or diagnose.  The higher up venoms could re-afflict with a better affliction.  Biting with slike could afflict with asthma if they already have anorexia.


  • TaelTael Member Posts: 1,197 @ - Epic Achaean
    edited January 2015
    More unique venoms (like scytherus and nechamandra) seems like it would be a more interesting solution, and one that would help retain the identity of one of the most identifiable classes in the game.

    In fact, I think it would be really interesting to keep secrete around for some purposes and get rid of transcretion.

    First give serpents a low-level ability to secrete envenomable venoms directly onto weapons. Bake all envenomable venoms into it so serpents don't have to carry around vials of venoms they haven't learned yet (and so the skill isn't crowded with pointless venoms no one is ever going to bite with). That's just a QoL change for the most part (aside from retardation I guess) and it seems silly to hide a very thematic QoL class ability so high in the skill. And with that uncoupled from transcretion, you can do fun things with the Venoms skill.

    Venoms then gets unique venoms like scytherus and nechamandra. Most venoms (like scytherus and nechamandra) don't need to be secreted before use, but some do. And there's no transcretion for those that do. Then you can do interesting things like introducing powerful, yet situational venoms that have very small bite windows, so secreting them means banking on the idea that you can precisely time your offence to predict when the enemy will be in the correct state to bite with it during the window - and if you fail you have to purge and secrete and wait to try with it again, and if you wait too long to purge trying to get the bite off, you face a serious backlash effect (a small window means this backlash is actually a realistic concern unlike most venoms right now). Or venoms that have relatively random build-up times. You could also do venoms that affect the serpent too, which could be used two ways: (1) secreting a venom gives you a disadvantage while it builds up, but then has a payoff if you can work through the disadvantage or (2) as soon as the secrete is ready, the serpent is also affected by the venom, providing a way to do the sort of two-edged sword abilities (again, like many of the alchemist abilities that don't so much do damage as they simply change the terms of the fight). Perhaps venoms that can't be purged (so the counter becomes trying to force a backlash). Maybe venoms that give a positive effect on build-up, but still have a large backlash so you have to choose between taking the backlash and giving the same positive effect to an enemy (which would also allow it to be used as a group-combat buff).

    Secretion could be used as a defining mechanic for the skill rather than as a mere annoyance that a later ability erases.

    There is a lot of unexplored territory for a Venoms skill. I really hope that's what serpents end up getting since it'd be a shame for the whole biting thing to be relegated to a small corner of the class when it's so thematic and the class is so unique to the game. Right now, biting effectively only exists for a few venoms, and I'll be sad if the change reinforces that rather than adds more reasons to bite people. A lot of people point out that subterfuge is already overstuffed, but hypnosis is relatively sparse, following the older skill paradigm of skills that were just a bunch of afflictions all delivered via the same mechanism (like venoms) - and I'd honestly rather see serpents lose some of the less-emblematic subterfuge abilities in favour of more venoms anyway.
    Shirszae
  • ErnamErnam Member Posts: 2,416 ✭✭✭✭✭ - Grand Achaean
    edited January 2015

    Serpent, like some other classes, was designed as a fully functional class that essentially only uses one skillset, while having two others for essentially only one or two actual abilities.

    Some classes fully rely on all three skillsets (like monk, apostate, BM, for example), and many don't (knights, for example).  

    I think one of the really crazy things that has been happening lately is that these tertiary (and mostly innocuous) trade skills are being taken away, and being replaced by skillsets that have significant combat utility, which is pretty unfair to classes that didn't have trade skills (and thus are receiving no new skills).

    While it is clear that IRE is taking this into account (spiritlore giving access to only 2 active abilities at a time, for example), I don't think that a lot of the playerbase is really factoring this in.

    Serpent is probably the best example of this, since 98% of its combat abilities are in a single skillset (Subterfuge).  Both Venoms and Hypnosis only have 2-3 meaningful combat abilities in them.  IRE knows this, which is why I doubt we'll see a hugely powerful third skillset added, but I don't think a lot of the playerbase is taking this into account for less obvious classes, like knights, magi, sylvan, and so on.

    So, I think we're in good hands, I just wanted to throw this out there as food for thought for some of the people contemplating and/or making suggestions as we head into a huge wave of skillset replacements.

    SuladanShirszae
  • RiashainRiashain Member Posts: 191 ✭✭✭✭ - Eminent
    Lol @ serpents being a unique class. You can by your way to being a serpent without multiclass already.

    I'm not saying I don't enjoy it or it isn't fun but it is the most accessible by everyone class there is because so much of it is reproduced in artefacts.
  • JovoloJovolo EnglandMember Posts: 3,270 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    hardly. Name 5 serpent-unique things you can purchase out of their plethora of abilities.
  • RiashainRiashain Member Posts: 191 ✭✭✭✭ - Eminent
    I don't approach these convos from a combat stance, my apologies. I forget that's what most of these dicsussions are about.

    In terms of general utility though. And let me adjust my statement to purchase, or present in other classes. We are talking uniqueness.

    Evade - blademaster
    Shadow - blademaster
    Illusions - classes and purchase
    shroud - classes and purchase (I believe - even if slightly different)
    bows - classes and purchase (to an extent)
    Bind - blademaster
    warp - artefact

    So ok, venoms, hypnosis. Most people are arguing those aren't very useful anyway aside from a couple abilities.

    So basically phase and the ability to mess with wormholes rather than just use them.

    I don't see serpent as many more unique than any other class, really. Sure, lipread, eavesdrop. You're not using those every day.

    Significant portion of the cool stuff for serpents of not unique though, which is all I was really getting at.

    I'm sure there's more than the above, but I'm on a tablet so I'm not going to spend the time double-checking for more examples, sorry!

    Not looking for a huge argument anyway lol.
  • JovoloJovolo EnglandMember Posts: 3,270 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    I know there are a few, but this notion that you can pretty much buy access to the serpent class via artefacts is an unfounded one imo. and one that's just snowballed over time. I'd give you Warps and Cloaking, that's fair enough. Shoot isn't really so much a serpent thing though, and snipe itself is unique to the serpent class. The other things you mentioned are class abilities, so you have to restrict yourself to a specific class as opposed to gaining them through artefacts. Bind in Shindo and Subterfuge are also different abilities, despite having the same name. The staff of illusions and subterfuge illusions are mechanically different too, and the artefact is much more similar to Elementalism illusion. Considering Subterfuge is rivalled in size pretty much only by Groves, having two or three of the skill's abilities copied in artefacts doesn't do much to ruin the integrity of the skill.

    Serpent is a pretty unique class... probably my favourite in the game.

    I'm not after a huge argument, I just disagree with what you said
    ErnamEigenVayne
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,344 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Ernam said:

    Both Venoms and Hypnosis only have 2-3 meaningful combat abilities in them.




    Siduri
  • EigenEigen Member Posts: 21
    Ernam said:

    I think one of the really crazy things that has been happening lately is that these tertiary (and mostly innocuous) trade skills are being taken away, and being replaced by skillsets that have significant combat utility, which is pretty unfair to classes that didn't have trade skills (and thus are receiving no new skills).

    I wouldn't say it's unfair that they're not receiving new skills. They actually are receiving new options for skills: trade skills. No, they're not receiving new combat skills...most of them are probably fine. Classes like knight (infernal, runewarden, paladin) or magi were always lacking the dynamism of classes like apostate. This, in my view, is actually bringing them up to speed in that regard. 

    What's happening now is certainly not the end of class changes. In fact, all classes will likely need a facelift at some point. There are so many older classes have to deal with large arrays of useless skills: A good example of this is: lipread, scan, bask, rattle, eavesdrop, dispel, and channel in subterfuge alone. And that's just for serpents.

    Honestly, this happens in -every- game that has skill systems. They always go through constant metamorphoses, needing repeated updates to keep with the times and keep things fresh.
  • JarrodJarrod Member, Seafaring Liason, Secret Squirrel Posts: 3,060 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Kresslack said:
    Ernam said:

    Both Venoms and Hypnosis only have 2-3 meaningful combat abilities in them.


    Disagreeing because it's Ernam doesn't make that statement incorrect.
    image
    Cascades of quicksilver light streak across the firmament as the celestial voice of Ourania intones, "Oh Jarrod..."

    AustereEigenSiduriEld
  • SenaSena Member Posts: 3,957 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Eigen said:
    There are so many older classes have to deal with large arrays of useless skills: A good example of this is: lipread, scan, bask, rattle, eavesdrop, dispel, and channel in subterfuge alone. And that's just for serpents.
    Eavesdrop is very, very far from useless. Scan and bask are useful, and dispel is the only way to turn off cloak/ghost. Rattle and channel are more RP abilities, so useful/useless don't really apply. Listen is the only one there that's actually useless, and that's just because you learn eavesdrop (which is an upgraded listen) shortly after.
    AustereIocunJarrodCyla
  • JovoloJovolo EnglandMember Posts: 3,270 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Kresslack said:
    Ernam said:

    Both Venoms and Hypnosis only have 2-3 meaningful combat abilities in them.


    He isn't wrong though l o l
  • IocunIocun Member Posts: 3,665 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    edited January 2015
    Situational =/= useless.

    On their own, several of those abilities are indeed rarely used and not very beneficial in most circumstances. But they are all useful in certain situations, which means that in combination, they contribute rather significantly to the versatility of the subterfuge skill.

    Apart from this, there's also the fact that there are abilities that, while not particularly powerful, add some nice flavour. Few people would call noose a powerful combat ability, but being slowly strangled to death by an unseen assassin hiding in a tree is a lasting memory for many a novice that will surely help to impart a certain imagery of serpents.
  • EigenEigen Member Posts: 21
    edited January 2015
    Sena said:

    Eavesdrop is very, very far from useless. Scan and bask are useful, and dispel is the only way to turn off cloak/ghost. Rattle and channel are more RP abilities, so useful/useless don't really apply. Listen is the only one there that's actually useless, and that's just because you learn eavesdrop (which is an upgraded listen) shortly after.
    Disclaimer: I should have said this before, but I was basing my observations off of combat usefulness.

    Noose and scan go unquestionably hand-in-hand. And how often do people get noosed? I'd be willing to bet that < 1% of Serpent kills are from noose. If not for noose, it's good for spying on desirous 18 year old forest-dwellers, so that puts it in the flavor category.

    Turning off ghost and cloak are questionably useful in combat when alertness is of superior use. Regardless, someone can evade away, and unless you're going to waste the balance to search + double dispel then it's just not something that is always, if ever, crucial in combat.

    As for eavesdrop, sure it's nice for listening a room away whether or not a door is a barrier, but it is yet another flavor ability, unless it has changed since I went dormant a year or two ago. It's used for RP espionage. How much of that actually happens?

    I think rattle is probably my favorite ability out of all of those. I just wish you could rattle in a language... which sounds completely silly when I think about it. But right now if you were to rattle in the presence of two Serpents, one being your ally and one being your enemy, they would both see what you said.

    That's the basis of what I was saying though. We can agree to disagree if you like.

    Edit: Agree with the last bit of what Iocun said, definitely a lasting impression.
  • KaihutiKaihuti Member Posts: 15
    Venoms aside from the bite only ones are essentially useless now except for if your opponent has rebounding and shield up but slickness down and you want to refresh cloak or something. Otherwise envenomed flay is better than bite with shield/rebounding up and dstab is better if they aren't.

    Hypnosis has a few useful abilities, but most are filler to stack afflictions you actually care about. Serpents are pretty balanced though, so major changes might not be the best idea, removing secretion is just a flavour buff, with a slight retardation buff, and fixes a bit of spam that sometimes happens when you try to envenom a weapon but still have venom secreted.
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,344 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Jarrod said:
    Kresslack said:
    Ernam said:

    Both Venoms and Hypnosis only have 2-3 meaningful combat abilities in them.


    Disagreeing because it's Ernam doesn't make that statement incorrect.
    I don't see where I disagreed, just trying to figure out how having a slew of abilities to afflict your opponent with aren't meaningful, even if the two skillsets are largely redundant.


  • SenaSena Member Posts: 3,957 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    I agree that those are mostly useless for combat, though bask and dispel do have some marginal uses (for dispel I was mostly referring to dispelling yourself; alertness is cheap and hypersight is cheaper, so there's not a lot of reason to dispel an enemy serpent unless you don't have much vision). But then they're not meant for combat in the first place, and noncombat abilities being useless for combat doesn't support your point that they need a facelift.
    Eigen said:
    Noose and scan go unquestionably hand-in-hand. And how often do people get noosed? I'd be willing to bet that < 1% of Serpent kills are from noose. If not for noose, it's good for spying on desirous 18 year old forest-dwellers, so that puts it in the flavor category.
    Scan isn't usually useful, but it's useful in certain situations. It's been a while, but I remember scan going through grove concealment. Or maybe it was something else, but the only other thing I can think of at the moment that would hide you from farsight is a veil, and I don't think it bypasses veils. It can also tell you whether or not someone is on the ground, if you know they're in the area and should be visible (if they're not on scan, then they're in the trees or flying), which can be useful on occasion.
    Eigen said:
    As for eavesdrop, sure it's nice for listening a room away whether or not a door is a barrier, but it is yet another flavor ability, unless it has changed since I went dormant a year or two ago. It's used for RP espionage. How much of that actually happens?
    It happens quite a lot.
  • IocunIocun Member Posts: 3,665 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Sena said:
    (for dispel I was mostly referring to dispelling yourself; alertness is cheap and hypersight is cheaper, so there's not a lot of reason to dispel an enemy serpent unless you don't have much vision)
    Alertness only shows movement and not the other things hidden by cloak/shroud and both alertness and hypersight drain mana, which makes dispel (which, unless I'm remembering wrongly, is completely free) a very decent ability against serpents, necromancers, and occultists.
    AustereErnam
  • ErnamErnam Member Posts: 2,416 ✭✭✭✭✭ - Grand Achaean
    edited January 2015
    Iocun said:
    Sena said:
    (for dispel I was mostly referring to dispelling yourself; alertness is cheap and hypersight is cheaper, so there's not a lot of reason to dispel an enemy serpent unless you don't have much vision)
    Alertness only shows movement and not the other things hidden by cloak/shroud and both alertness and hypersight drain mana, which makes dispel (which, unless I'm remembering wrongly, is completely free) a very decent ability against serpents, necromancers, and occultists.

    I think it uses like 50 mana or something, but even that might not be the case.  Yeah, it's pretty amazing, considering that it's a balance-free def strip.  I'm not entirely sure why they even have the ability (I always assumed it was put in place for use on themselves, and it's balance-free use on others was an oversight, but who knows.)


    Regarding my whole "venoms/hypnosis only have a few useful abilities" comment - I am not saying that they are underpowered, I am just saying that 90% of serpent's abilities are in Subterfuge, so this imbalance between skillsets is fine (it makes it a great class for new players, too).

    As for whether or not they're actually mostly useless, for those who haven't played serpent:

    Venoms: Only ability that is actually used that can't be achieved from venom vials is relapsing.  I'll throw in Bite even though only a few serpents actually use it (it's essentially useless now that illusions are gone).  That's 291 credits for a single affliction.  Everything else is just for convenience.  Loki, nechamandra, you say?  Both terrible, and both available outside of Venoms.

    Hypnosis: Four five abilities are actually used.  Impatience/Confusion/Disrupt, Hypochondria, and Action.  The rest of the skillset is rendered almost entirely useless due to serpents not being able to reliably know when they hit (it has a semi-random, quite slow timer, and most of the afflictions don't show when they land).  Amnesia also has some limited uses, but only in extremely high-end skill tiers, and most uses also rely on illusions that no longer work.  I think if IRE chopped Hypnosis down to those five affs, nobody would notice.  Also pretty stiff for 291 credits, especially considering that none of the afflictions are unique to the class or terribly powerful.

    Serpents can't lock without impatience, but the main reason serpent needs to trans hypnosis is just because hypnosis success is based on skill level, so you can't use Impatience (low level ability) unless you Trans, essentially.  The abilities you learn are essentially just... filler.

    Relapsing is in no way necessary, so theoretically, a serpent could be extremely deadly without ever actually even learning Venoms.  They'd just spend a bunch of gold on vials.  *shrug*.

  • XinnaXinna Member Posts: 691 ✭✭✭✭✭ - Grand Achaean

    Amnesia? Wat.

    Hypersomnia is definitely useful. Stupidity and anorexia have some uses, but that's mostly it.

  • ErnamErnam Member Posts: 2,416 ✭✭✭✭✭ - Grand Achaean
    edited January 2015

    If you don't know how to use it then I don't know why I should explain it to ya.  You've done nothing but deny everything else I've showed you how to do.

    Short version: against client-side curing, it can be used to "sneak" afflictions by using invisible amnesia to eat a cure and illusioning the cure message 50-100ms after the affliction.  Curing systems think they cured it, just to find that they can't seem to apply salves like they thought they could, or surprise, you're still reckless, or didn't actually focus that anorexia, etc.  It allows a serpent to effectively land four venoms at once (backstab/dstab/residual) on top of impatience landing during backstab stun, for an instant lock.

    Hypnosis anorexia has no third party message, so is pretty much useless unless you have nothing better to fill a hypnosis buffer with against someone bad enough that you have that much time to spare suggesting things.  It is far too easily cured to have it land on a purely RNG timer and hope to actually score a lock off of.
  • SantarSantar Member, Secret Squirrel Posts: 2,425 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Ernam best serp.

    image

    XinnaTharvisKyrra
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