Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Morning in Vana'diel: Left out of the Level 40 Fun.

Morning in Vana'diel is your daily dose of FFXI and all things Vana'diel. Give us your thoughts on the interesting topics of the day! SAM has 18 million JAs and BLM has two. Where is the love?

I think everyone should have level 40(ish) abilities, and I think that SE is moving that way from the last couple of update. WHM, RDM and NIN have gotten a few things tossed in for level 40 that have really changed and improved their jobs especially for NIN and RDM. There are still some jobs that are lacking these abilities, and there are some jobs that have abilities around this level that are these kinds of defining abilities. In the end, there really should be these kind of alternating or “stance” abilities for all jobs. It surprisingly adds a lot of flavor to the jobs and are more buttons to push which most people like.

Like I said some jobs get these abilities around level 40 instead of at level 40. WAR and RNG get really nice abilities around this level even though it is not exactly at level 40. SAM gets them a lot lower because they were intended to be used as a subjob too, but SAM gets a level 60 ability that is also kind of nice. SAM has a bunch of other nice little toys that makes up for it so it’s not so bad for them.

But there are some jobs that have gotten the shaft in the backside from SE when it comes to job adjustments. Yes, BLM I am talking about you! You have gotten screwed and you really need something to help you out. WHM really needed something to make it stand out from RDM and SMN and SCH when it came to healing and that was in the form of the level 40 JAs. Now BLM needs something that makes it better than SCH for nuking. They really need something that either improves their MP efficiency or damage potential or both. I think a set of alternating JAs would be helpful here for BLM.

I think it is probably coming for BLM, probably in the next update in fact (probably in October when I am out of town). It is something that BLM really needs to be competitive in their pretty much sole role as a nuking DD. It’s time that SE hands out a little JA love to the BLM.


Qtipus said...

I can't remember who it was I was talking to about this (I want to say Yoteo during the cookout), but we were talking about how great it would be if BLM got a pair of alternating JAs that were similar to how SAM can alternate between Hasso/Seigan and WHM could alternate between Misery/Solace.

Felt like BLM would definitely benefit from having one JA that gave MAB at the expense of more MP and another that gave more MACC while consuming less MP.

Also joked a bit about a BLM JA that would be on a 10-20 minute timer that would allow you to cast any spell in your repertoire and have it's damage be directly proportional to how much MP you have.

The big question is how much of a difference would it actually make in the long run for BLM? Sure it's a couple more fancy buttons to push and whatnot, but will it really get BLMs into burn parties like they want or will they still be relegated to soloing BST pets and rats or manaburning flans and birds?

BLMs I hear complaining about their lack of love have most of their complaints centered around this. They simply can't get into a party that does 20-25k/hour. There are fights in the end-game area that they're almost completely useless in (re: Odin), but for the most part, the old adage of "throw more BLMs at it" still holds true.

They definitely need some attention in the MP Efficiency dept and possibly a little love given to the damage forumlas for the spells since SCH is right there behind them, but overall, they aren't as broken as people make them out to be.

Ringthree said...

I don't think there is anything you can do to fix BLM in burn parties. You would have to remove the 15% XP bonus in Aht Urghan for that to work, but I think this is more about making BLM better for straight nuking than SCH. They don't need to be more MP efficient than SCH (I think MP efficiency should be SCHs niche), but they need to have more consistency and more damage with less fear of pulling hate.

I think we should move back to a "throw more BLM at it" idea. Just because it caused a problem in the past doesn't mean it will cause a problem in the now.

Anonymous said...

I don't think there's anything SE can do to make BLM attractive to a melee burn party, and there's definitely nothing they can do to make melee burn parties unattractive.

Before WoG there were exactly three BLM merit burn camps at which a party of 5-6 top end BLMs could earn 12-14k/hr. Good luck getting flan camp free. The other two camps are wamoura[campa], and death is more or less certain at some point in a party there.

As a top end BLM, I'd love some extra spice to throw in. I don't see the basic playstyle changing, though. I expect to solo an hour or two of buffer when I get low, melee burn for merits, and generally try to not die often.


Evilpaul said...

I made a *slightly* tongue in cheek prediction about BLM updates a day or two after the NIN update was announced:

By "slightly" I mean "I tried to come up with the most worthless JAs possible while still sticking with something I could actually see SE doing."

Black Mage is pretty well balanced, so I'm not sure what SE can really do. Increased Magic Damage (MAB+ JA)? Increase MP efficiency (Parsimony rip-off)? Those are kind of the same thing, really.

If SE wants to get BLM into burn parties they'll need to bump Staff skill up to A+, give a few Acc Bonus traits, and change Retribution to be a 6 hit crit WS. Or some massive Auto Refresh to be able to nuke continuously. Both are highly unlikely.

In retrospect with regards to the NIN, RDM, and WHM updates I've got mixed feelings.

Yonin/Innin could really use either a lowered shared recast/decay rate or something. (I think they currently wear off if you zone too?) They're just *really* inflexible.

As for what they actually do I think they're alright. They don't do much to solve the problems I thought NIN had, but they are still useful to have.

RDM got...basically just Composure. I haven't seen anyone use an Enspell 2 or even talk about them in months. And while the 3x longer self-buff duration is pretty cool it didn't do much to change RDM's role in group activities.

WHM really made out like a bandit of the three. More potent Cures + Stoneskin! AoE Status removal! When played properly WHM is far better a healer than any other class in the game now.

Anonymous said...

BLM is already one of the most sought after jobs for end game events, do they really *need* more? No, seriously.

I see 3 complaints.

1. Can't get into good merit parties. Neither can PLD, BST, PUP, etc etc. Get a merit job or GTFO. I'll admit that refilling buffers is a different story. Is whacking flans for an hour for *only* 8-12k (depending on solo/party) the end of the world? I fill my buffer and farm tabs while I'm in sky doing an elite training for augmenting with another BLM.

2. I'm bored because I don't have enough JA to keep me busy. We have plenty of spells, but you want JA anyway? You should be complaining that we have all these lovely spells but only use a tiny percentage of them because elemental weaknesses mean almost nothing when you can usually concentrate on ice and/or thunder without much concern.

3. SCH are taking all our jawbs! No stuns, no true sleepga (Accession doubles recasts, hello 60s recharge sleeps!), no -agas, no native MAB traits (from subjob onry), no Elemental Seal, no Zenith/Morrigans. Everything has a time and a place. Replacing your BLM army with a SCH army isn't going to work for everything. However, your damage output is going to be greater with BLMx3+SCH than it would be with BLMx4.

"When played properly WHM is far better a healer than any other class in the game now"

WHM was always the best healer in the game for anything that mattered (and raping little pink birds in 30 seconds doesn't matter). That stoneskin only lasts a few seconds and Esuna requires the WHM to have the status on themselves (no AoE Stona or Silena). Sounded overpowered, but really is rather balanced.