Well, that was interesting. MJ kept telling us his idea for stealth was Bat S*** crazy (BSC) but I don’t think any of us imagined that the mechanic for it (the Veil) would potentially apply to the entire game. So his stealth mechanic, literally, changes the entire aspect of RVRing in CU. It adds another layer to combat, another system to fear and manage, and a (as far as I know) completely original way to incorporate stealth. Yes, it’s definitely BSC, but, is it BSC good or BSC bad? Does it add to the overall game focus (RVR) or does it distract from it? I’ll take an honest look at it from a few perspectives.
A Non-Rogues perspective: I play a lot of stealth classes, but I’m not a hardcore stealth guy so this is perspective is simply my personal view. Construed down it’s simplest form the question is this: do you prefer being frozen in place for a 8 seconds as means of crowd control, or, do you prefer being suked into the veil and fighting a jacked up rogue for a 8 seconds? Personally, I play RVR games because I love to fight, so if you give me a choice between being helpless with a stun, or battling 1 on 1 I will almost always chose to battle. That is, of course, if the time frames were similar, stunned for 8 seconds or fight a rogue in the veil for 8 seconds. If the times were different, for ex. stunned for 5 seconds or fight in the veil for 20 seconds I’d rather just wait out the stun and remain in the heat of a battle. Why? Because as much fun as this mechanic is I play this type of game to fight, in the open world. If I wanted 1v1 fights I would play a fighting game. My main reason for playing is group fights (which is sort of a conflict because I’m usually solo or with a friend or two).
That brings me to my next worry, annoyance. If this veil transport is something that happens frequently it could be EXTREMELY frustrating. My main desire is the group fight, but if I keep flashing into a 1v1 survival match away from the fight I want, that might get really annoying. A simple fix, you can only be Valed once every couple of minutes or something like that resolves that issue for the most part. In the end I love how unique it is, and I look forward to seeing it develop further. Like I said, if it becomes a take away distraction I would not like it, if it adds to the battle and doesn’t make said battle less important than I am all for it. In the end the open world RVR HAS to come first, the ghost world stuff second.
A Rogues perspective: I may not be a hardcore rogue guy now, but I was once. I was the guy that camped the flight master in stealth with his rogue friend in WOW (you're welcome) so I think I can slip into a rogues skin/mind and relate on this one. I hate it! Next.
Just kiddng, I’ll go on. But really, my first reaction would be fear. MJ is saying I lost my burst damage, and rather than be a hunter and assassin I have to wait for table scraps? Wait, so I wait in my web and someone throws flies into it for me...that suddenly sounds more appealing to me. And I may have lost my busrt DPS and stun-lock, but I can still stealth up on someone, pop out and attack them. I may have to wait until they are low on health or mana or action, but I can still play a rogue like I always did, I just have to be more cautious, it’s not an instant nuke win. So I’m trading stun lock and DPS for my own lion cage where my team feeds me victims...sounds interesting. I’m open to it. Don’t hate it, don’t love it, but I am excited to try it. No to mention walking through walls like Shadowkat would be pretty cool. Sneak into a fort, wait til a ranged is low on something, pop out an attack them. And I may not be able to group stealth, but I’m pretty sure I can stealth, my friends can stealth elsewhere, and we can meet at a specific point in the castle, pop out and gang assault someone moohahahaha!
What? They can phase through our defenses? What's the point of defenses then? Enter the anti rogue, the rogue hunter, mortal enemy of the rogue. Superman vs Lex Luthor, Batman vs Joker, Tom vs Jerry, and now VS vs VW! I found a song that perfectly describes each class (extra pts for identifying the reference)
The CU Rogue Hunter-Veil Stalkers:
Fighter of the Night Man
Champion of the Sun
Master of the Veil
and friendship for everyone.
The CU Rogue-Veil Walkers:
Sneaky and mean
Spider inside my dreams
I think I hate you
You make me wanna cry, you make me wanna fight.
So the VS spend a lot if their time trying to get the VW before the VW can get to the VS’s people. Interesting concept. I like it. I see it playing out like Mercs vs Spies in Splinter Cell, but with more moves. I think its interesting as hell, and I can see myself enjoying either class although I lean toward the VS just because I like setting traps. As for ghosting through our defenses, I guess everyone will need a decent VS. It would be exciting to think you're safe in a keep then suddenly you get sucked into a veil, or a few VWs come running up the stairs and you realize your VS was AFK...again!
Balance: The biggest complaint about stealth is that it is OP easy mode. That is the genius of this approach. When you go into the veil (the spider’s parlor) the Rogue has the advantage, when you get the rogue out of the veil, you have the advantage. Equality, boon vs bane, genius. Now both sides are either OP or UP depending on the situation.
Conclusion: So far, as expected, this entire idea has caused mass drama, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Non stealthers, ask yourselves, would I rather be incapacitated for 5 seconds or fight 1v1 for 5 seconds? At least the later gives you a chance to defend yourself. Stealthers, ask yourselves, would you prefer to pop out and either nuke or die, or would you rather exist in your own relm and be hand fed victims to battle without the worry of a near by tank mauling you? I always hated that rogues had 1 shot, then it was either die or vanish and rest up for 5 mins for another shot.
Studies show when asked if they like change people overwhelmingly say yes, when presented with change, they overwhelmingly reject it. We have been asking for someone to go against the norm and challenge the concepts of this deprived genre, and we got it. Don’t be mad about it, realize we caused it. Also realize that right now this is just an idea on paper. MMOs are living, evolving games. We have 2 plus years to work this out or abandon it. Personally I have faith that MJ and Co will get it right, they will make it work, and it will make CU even more fantastic than it already sounds or they will can it, but in reality (or in the Veil) only...time will tell.