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Sage Top 3 Questions - Answered

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes > Jedi Consular > Sage
Sage Top 3 Questions - Answered
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EricMusco's Avatar


EricMusco
05.28.2014 , 12:05 PM | #1 This is the last staff post in this thread.  
Hey folks!

Below you will find the answers to the top 3 Sage questions which were submitted earlier in this forum. Thank you all for your patience as we worked on getting them answered!

-eric


PvE - Survivability

Spoiler


Are the developers satisfied with Sage/Sorcerer survivability, specifically in PvE operations? What is your philosophy towards the Sage class and its defenses? Are there any plans to improve the class's current survival tools? For example, by perhaps providing a means with which to move our tools (Force Armor, Force Mend, etc.) off the GCD when cast on yourself?

We are mostly satisfied with Sage/Sorcerer survivability in Operations. If you are a Sage/Sorcerer that specializes in dealing damage, we do not expect you to use Force Armor/Static Barrier on yourself or others in an Operation. If you find this to not be the case in any given encounter, please feel free to post in the Flashpoints, Operations, and Heroic Missions forum, and let the Operations team know specifically which mechanic in which encounter is making you feel like you are required to use Force Armor/Static Barrier on yourself to survive. Also, please note that depending on how you and your healer specialize (if your group has a Sage/Sorcerer healer), your own Force Armor/Static Barrier is likely weaker and more expensive than your Sage/ Sorcerer healer’s Force Armor/Static Barrier. In addition, using your own Force Armor/Static Barrier will lockout your Sage/Sorcerer healer’s stronger and cheaper version of the ability.

Usually, damage dealt to the whole Operation group or to random Operation group members is dealt as elemental or internal damage, so that the classes with higher armor values do not have an advantage over classes with lower armor values, like the Sage/Sorcerer. Sometimes, the Operations team will intentionally decide to not make this damage elemental or internal (as is currently the case in the Dread Master Brontes encounter). If you feel that such practices leave the Sage/Sorcerer in a position that is too vulnerable, then please let us know in the Operations forum (linked above) so that we can address the issue.

Now with that said, we will definitely consider taking the global cooldown off of Force Mend/Unnatural Preservation, but the global cooldown on Force Armor/Static Barrier is there to stay, since it can be placed on others and we do not expect you to use the ability in Operations if you are a damage dealer.


PvP - Seer Spec Issues

Spoiler


Are the developers considering any changes to Seer spec to reduce the heavy reliance on casted abilities or to improve force management in a way that is not detrimental to survival? For example, improving Rejuvenate, reducing the lockout duration of Force Armor, or removing the health cost of Noble Sacrifice via set bonuses?

Sage/Sorcerer healers, we hear you and we see that our data validates what you are saying – as it shows you are currently performing behind both Scoundrel/Operative healers and Commando/Mercenary healers in PvP. We do not currently have any plans to share with you on how we intend to improve Sage/Sorcerer healing in PvP, but it is a priority for us, and we would love to hear your own ideas on how you would like Sage/Sorcerer healing to be improved in PvP without also making Sage/Sorcerer healing too good in PvE. We will say in advance that, “make such-and-such ability activate instantly,” is not a solution we are likely to consider (unless it is a temporary buff triggered by something else, and not a permanent reduction of activation time). Our goal is to keep Sage/Sorcerer healing as close as possible to the way it is in PvE, while improving how it performs in PvP.

Now here are some questions for the Sage/Sorcerer community, regarding Noble Sacrifice/Consumption. Do you believe removing the health cost of Noble Sacrifice/Consumption as a PvP set bonus would be something that PvE Sage/Sorcerer healers also feel like they need, or are PvE Sage/Sorcerers happier with their current set bonuses? If it is something that PvE Sages/Sorcerers would rather have as well, then which current PvE set bonus would you want to give up for it? Do you think that having a health-cost-free Noble Sacrifice/Consumption would be too good for PvE? Do you believe it might take away too much of the challenge for healing in PvE situations?

Please let us know your thoughts about these issues in your replies to this post. We will be listening, and we appreciate your feedback.


Sage as Jedi

Spoiler


Will the developer do anything to ameliorate these issues? Examples include allowing Willpower to affect melee attacks; providing additional worthwhile lightsaber attacks; and offering alternate animations via the Cartel Market or otherwise (Marketing take note!).

We could rather easily make Willpower affect melee attacks for Sages/Sorcerers, but we have no intention to make Sages/Sorcerers use their lightsabers more than they currently do. In terms of lore, the particular attributes that make someone a “Jedi Sage” or a “Sith Sorcerer” vary over the vast timeline of the Star Wars galaxy. And while Yoda and Palpatine were definitely inspirations for these classes, they are never identified by those terms in the films, and it wasn’t our intention to make direct gameplay clones of those characters in any case. Our feeling was that there are many players who want the experience of playing as a Jedi/Sith who relies almost solely on their mastery of the Force to resolve the challenges they face, with the lightsaber serving only as a secondary weapon; these classes were designed with that experience in mind.

As far as offering alternate animations and visual effects via the Cartel Market is concerned, only time will tell. Your message has been passed onto the team responsible for Cartel Market updates, and if it is possible, then you might see those options appear in the future.

Eric Musco | Community Manager
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Master-Nala's Avatar


Master-Nala
05.28.2014 , 12:15 PM | #2
Quote: Originally Posted by EricMusco View Post

We are mostly satisfied with Sage/Sorcerer survivability in Operations. If you are a Sage/Sorcerer that specializes in dealing damage, we do not expect you to use Force Armor/Static Barrier on yourself or others in an Operation. If you find this to not be the case in any given encounter, please feel free to post in the Flashpoints, Operations, and Heroic Missions forum, and let the Operations team know specifically which mechanic in which encounter is making you feel like you are required to use Force Armor/Static Barrier on yourself to survive. Also, please note that depending on how you and your healer specialize (if your group has a Sage/Sorcerer healer), your own Force Armor/Static Barrier is likely weaker and more expensive than your Sage/ Sorcerer healer’s Force Armor/Static Barrier. In addition, using your own Force Armor/Static Barrier will lockout your Sage/Sorcerer healer’s stronger and cheaper version of the ability.
I find this to be very odd, Force Armor is about the only 'heal' that damage specs can reliably use and you're saying we shouldn't be. I'm assuming you mean ONLY Operations as that is nutty in PvP and even in Flashpoints if the healer needs help.

Quote:
Usually, damage dealt to the whole Operation group or to random Operation group members is dealt as elemental or internal damage, so that the classes with higher armor values do not have an advantage over classes with lower armor values, like the Sage/Sorcerer. Sometimes, the Operations team will intentionally decide to not make this damage elemental or internal (as is currently the case in the Dread Master Brontes encounter). If you feel that such practices leave the Sage/Sorcerer in a position that is too vulnerable, then please let us know in the Operations forum (linked above) so that we can address the issue.
I like this part of the answer because it speaks to something I've always thought. Modifying the content has to be a balance option. Buffing isn't always the answer.

Quote:
Now with that said, we will definitely consider taking the global cooldown off of Force Mend/Unnatural Preservation, but the global cooldown on Force Armor/Static Barrier is there to stay, since it can be placed on others and we do not expect you to use the ability in Operations if you are a damage dealer.
Fair enough, Force Mend off the GCD would be very helpful.

Quote:
Sage/Sorcerer healers, we hear you and we see that our data validates what you are saying – as it shows you are currently performing behind both Scoundrel/Operative healers and Commando/Mercenary healers in PvP. We do not currently have any plans to share with you on how we intend to improve Sage/Sorcerer healing in PvP, but it is a priority for us, and we would love to hear your own ideas on how you would like Sage/Sorcerer healing to be improved in PvP without also making Sage/Sorcerer healing too good in PvE. We will say in advance that, “make such-and-such ability activate instantly,” is not a solution we are likely to consider (unless it is a temporary buff triggered by something else, and not a permanent reduction of activation time). Our goal is to keep Sage/Sorcerer healing as close as possible to the way it is in PvE, while improving how it performs in PvP.
I don't think making any new powers instant is advisable, but improving Force Armor and Rejuvenate could help a lot. For example, lowering the lockout on Force Armor would be great. Removing the cooldown on Rejuvenate would also help a lot. It would be a quick combo you can put on people then when under pressure.
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znihilist's Avatar


znihilist
05.28.2014 , 12:25 PM | #3
Quote: Originally Posted by Master-Nala View Post
Thanks, reserved for feedback on Nobel Sacrifice.
I know I don't post often on the forums here, but as a sorc healer I can say that removing the health cost of Noble Sacrifice is not something I will strive to in PvE. I don't think I was ever concerned with that particular aspect of it, the debuff is far more concerning to me in PvE.
So yes reducing/removing the cost is great, but I don't think I will sacrifice the current PvE set bonus for it.
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TwinkleTwinkie's Avatar


TwinkleTwinkie
05.28.2014 , 12:42 PM | #4
Quote: Originally Posted by EricMusco View Post
Now here are some questions for the Sage/Sorcerer community, regarding Noble Sacrifice/Consumption. Do you believe removing the health cost of Noble Sacrifice/Consumption as a PvP set bonus would be something that PvE Sage/Sorcerer healers also feel like they need, or are PvE Sage/Sorcerers happier with their current set bonuses? If it is something that PvE Sages/Sorcerers would rather have as well, then which current PvE set bonus would you want to give up for it? Do you think that having a health-cost-free Noble Sacrifice/Consumption would be too good for PvE? Do you believe it might take away too much of the challenge for healing in PvE situations?
Hell Yes I believe removing the Health Cost of Noble Sacrifice as a Set Bonus should happen. I would GLADLY trade the extra 50 focus I get from the 4 piece set bonus for it. I don't need that extra 50 focus, when I'm down to 50 Focus crap is liable to hit the fan.

I consider myself to be "decent" at managing my focus and when crap starts to get a little sour in Ops I find myself practically depending on the Healing Trance and Noble Sacrifice combo to keep up with the damage being dealt out but it can be in vain if I'm just killing myself to keep someone else alive when no one can afford to go down. Granted this is a relatively uncommon situation but still it would be extremely useful.

Manweth's Avatar


Manweth
05.28.2014 , 12:45 PM | #5
Where the hell is concerns related to TK sages?

Are you sages all gone mad, why didn't any of you ask about them?!
I'm done Dear Class Balance Team.
You've broken me. I now know you hate all sages and guardians.
Have fun giggling with your metas.

KeyboardNinja's Avatar


KeyboardNinja
05.28.2014 , 12:55 PM | #6
First off, I'm disappointed that we didn't get a more fleshed out response on the animations issue. I know it is in some sense trivial, but I'm really, really tired of shoveling gravel…

More substantial feedback follows below…

---

Quote: Originally Posted by EricMusco View Post
Usually, damage dealt to the whole Operation group or to random Operation group members is dealt as elemental or internal damage, so that the classes with higher armor values do not have an advantage over classes with lower armor values, like the Sage/Sorcerer. Sometimes, the Operations team will intentionally decide to not make this damage elemental or internal (as is currently the case in the Dread Master Brontes encounter). If you feel that such practices leave the Sage/Sorcerer in a position that is too vulnerable, then please let us know in the Operations forum (linked above) so that we can address the issue.
Using just nightmare mode content, looking through TfB, S&V and DF, I can think of the following places where I (as a DPS sorc/sage) am called upon to at least bubble myself, and sometimes bubble others. I'm backporting strategies to at gear level, since obviously a good chunk of this content can be simply smashed through at this point.
  • Dread Guard (lightning field and sometimes with the DoT in the third phase)
  • Operator IX during Black Obtuse in order to even survive the agro dump mechanic (kinetic/energy damage!)
  • Kephess in order to survive Dread Bomb (kinetic/energy again!)
  • Titan VI sub-20% soft enrage (note that the damage here is kinetic/energy and not internal/elemental)
  • Thrasher double sniper spawn (internal/elemental damage, but still substantial; note that the sniper attacks, which cannot be avoided for a period of about 7 seconds, are kinetic/energy)
  • Warlords the entire first phase (damage here is highly varied, but most of the unavoidable damage is kinetic/energy)
  • Styrak during during the "Summon" cast for the reincarnated dragon (internal/elemental raid damage during soft-enrage). Also during spines.
  • Draxus just before Phase 5 (triple bulwark + boss + double corrupter in back), often including bubbling other raid members.
  • Draxus going into final phase
  • Grob'thok sometimes at Overhead Smash (kinetic/energy damage again)
  • Brontes before clockwork phase (kinetic/energy damage)
  • Brontes when taking an orb (internal/elemental, mercifully)
  • Brontes before six finger phase (I think internal/elemental, but it might be kinetic/energy)
  • Brontes before final phase (internal/elemental damage)
  • Brontes following both hand pushes before "Punish Betrayal" finishes casting

A lot of the raid damage on this list is kinetic/energy. I really don't think you can safely claim that the majority of raid damage is internal/elemental, because so much of the really concerning damage doesn't fall into that category. Brontes's Fire and Forget is even worse, because not only is it kinetic/energy, but it also carries a roughly 10% boost in accuracy, meaning that the consular/inquisitor class intrinsic 5% boost to defense chance is largely negated.

On a note about the meta-game, the recent buffs to commando/mercenary healers together with positional mechanics in the current tier of content have resulted in the commando/mercenary + scoundrel/operative healing combo being by far the most favored healing pair by top-tier nightmare raid groups. I personally believe that sage/sorc is undervalued as a healer, but that's not really the point. The point is that, due to the very common absence of a sage/sorc healer in top-tier raids, sage/sorc DPS are burdened with an extra emphasis on the use of Force Armor/Static Barrier as a raid utility. They have no lockout to conflict with, and thus bubbling essentially represents comparatively cheap off-healing with significant strategic benefits. This is most commonly felt by TK/Lightning spec, as that tree contains the talent which increases the amount absorbed, while also providing a more lenient force regen mechanic (i.e. freedom to off-heal).

Quote: Originally Posted by EricMusco View Post
Now with that said, we will definitely consider taking the global cooldown off of Force Mend/Unnatural Preservation, but the global cooldown on Force Armor/Static Barrier is there to stay, since it can be placed on others and we do not expect you to use the ability in Operations if you are a damage dealer.
Good good good good good. I'd much rather have FM/UP off of the GCD than the bubble, given the lockout situation.

Quote: Originally Posted by EricMusco View Post
Now here are some questions for the Sage/Sorcerer community, regarding Noble Sacrifice/Consumption. Do you believe removing the health cost of Noble Sacrifice/Consumption as a PvP set bonus would be something that PvE Sage/Sorcerer healers also feel like they need, or are PvE Sage/Sorcerers happier with their current set bonuses? If it is something that PvE Sages/Sorcerers would rather have as well, then which current PvE set bonus would you want to give up for it? Do you think that having a health-cost-free Noble Sacrifice/Consumption would be too good for PvE? Do you believe it might take away too much of the challenge for healing in PvE situations?
It really should be the 4pc PvP set bonus. I do not want Noble Sacrifice/Consumption to lack a health cost in PvE. I think it's really, really important to keep the cost, in fact, because otherwise we're back to pre-1.2 days where sages/sorcs could heal indefinitely in PvE with absolutely no worries about resources. Keep the PvE set bonuses for sage/sorc healers (though consider improving the 4pc slightly, perhaps by adding a lockout reduction on Force Armor/Static Barrier similar to the PvP 2pc).

Eliminating the Noble Sacrifice/Consumption health cost on the 4pc PvP bonus would categorically rule out any thought of PvP sage/sorc healers using the 2pc PvE set bonus, which is currently quite common.
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Keypek's Avatar


Keypek
05.28.2014 , 01:00 PM | #7
Quote: Originally Posted by Manweth View Post
Where the hell is concerns related to TK sages?

Are you sages all gone mad, why didn't any of you ask about them?!
But you asked for more melee damage. I mean, that's what sages need right? More melee damage. And being in melee range will help with the glass cannon part also. New ability when level increases they'll give you Super Saber Strike.

But seriously, no health loss on noble sac would be kind of OP. Maybe when NS is used give a 15 second buff that doubles force regen in addition to its current benefit? Would still need to use it but would be needed a lot less... at least every 15 seconds and use it as a pre-cast ability to begin fights.
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Galothor's Avatar


Galothor
05.28.2014 , 01:01 PM | #8
Quote: Originally Posted by Manweth View Post
Where the hell is concerns related to TK sages?

Are you sages all gone mad, why didn't any of you ask about them?!
I asked the same question. Especially the melee question was outrageous. No clue what the "community" was thinking when they "voted" for this question.

The first answer was inevitable in an Operations context. Though there could have been some hints towards PvP - like Barrier being of of GCD when applied to yourself.

Well at least it is not as crappy as the last set of answers.

Lorrimar's Avatar


Lorrimar
05.28.2014 , 01:09 PM | #9
Quote: Originally Posted by EricMusco View Post


Now here are some questions for the Sage/Sorcerer community, regarding Noble Sacrifice/Consumption. Do you believe removing the health cost of Noble Sacrifice/Consumption as a PvP set bonus would be something that PvE Sage/Sorcerer healers also feel like they need, or are PvE Sage/Sorcerers happier with their current set bonuses? If it is something that PvE Sages/Sorcerers would rather have as well, then which current PvE set bonus would you want to give up for it? Do you think that having a health-cost-free Noble Sacrifice/Consumption would be too good for PvE? Do you believe it might take away too much of the challenge for healing in PvE situations?

As a strictly PvE sage who has never even queued for a PvP match, if you put a 2 piece set bonus on pvp gear that takes the health removal away from noble sacrifice, you can bet your *** I'll get 2 pieces of that gear. That is so far above & beyond my current 4 piece PvE set bonus of 50 extra force as to be laughable.

namesaretough's Avatar


namesaretough
05.28.2014 , 01:10 PM | #10
As a long time sage healer main, including back when they added the health cost back to Seer's NS casts, it's interesting they're considering removing it again, since it made force management trivial. It's certainly better than the 50 extra force from the 4pc bonus could ever be.

Quote: Originally Posted by KeyboardNinja View Post
Using just nightmare mode content, looking through TfB, S&V and DF, I can think of the following places where I (as a DPS sorc/sage) am called upon to at least bubble myself, and sometimes bubble others...
Many of these examples, especially on DF NiM fights, are places where the bubbles are only required if your healers have fallen behind, and are unnecessary if your healers are executing properly. Bioware, PLEASE don't balance around sages/sorcs being considered a permanent offhealer.