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Memory Lane. - Remembering the Concealment Operative.

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes > Scoundrel / Operative
Memory Lane. - Remembering the Concealment Operative.

KyoMamoru's Avatar

12.08.2012 , 07:02 AM | #1
In order to facilitate an active thread with in our player base, I feel it's important to keep discussion going with prompts. The current prompt is:

Why are you still playing a Concealment Operative? If you were and stopped, why?

1.1.1 Patch Notes
  • Acid Blade: Now provides 30% armor penetration while active. [Nerf - Originally 50%]
  • Jarring Strike: This ability now knocks the target down for 1.5 seconds. [Nerf - Originally 3 seconds.]
  • Hidden Strike: The damage output of this ability has been decreased by approximately 20% to control burst damage and because it was enabling significantly faster than intended kills in PvP. [Nerf - Obvious!]

Game Update 1.2 - Legacy
  • Backstab now has a 12-second cooldown and deals approximately 5% more damage. [Nerf - Originally 8 seconds.]
  • Hidden Strike now has a 7.5-second cooldown. [Nerf - Originally no cooldown.]
  • Culling has been redesigned and is now a 2-point skill. It no longer increases damage dealt to poisoned targets, but increases the Energy gained by Stim Boost and the damage dealt by Laceration and Collateral Strike. [Culling was a 3% increase to damage on poisoned targets. Not enough information to tell if buff or nerf.]
  • Inclement Conditioning is now a 2-point skill. [Nerf - used to be a 3 point skill.]
  • Flanking is a new 1-point skill located in Tier 3 of the skill tree. It reduces the Energy cost of Backstab by 5. [Buff]
  • Laceration now costs 10 Energy (down from 15) and deals approximately 10% less damage. [Buff/Nerf.]
  • Meticulously Kept Blades no longer increases Energy gained by Stim Boost. This effect is now part of Culling.[Nerf - Reduces effectiveness of a talent point without adding value.]
  • Waylay now increases the damage dealt by Backstab. It is now located in Tier 5 of the skill tree and requires Flanking. [Buff]
  • Corrosive Microbes now functions correctly. [Buff]
  • Lethality now increases critical chance by 1% per point. [Nerf - was 2%.]
  • Razor Edge now increases Shiv damage by 4% per point. [Nerf - was 5%]

1.2.1 Patch Notes
  • Snipe's damage has been increased by approximately 5%. [Buff: Lawl.]

Game Update 1.3: Allies
  • The animations for Laceration and Collateral Strike have been improved. [Buff]
  • Survival Training now increases healing received by 1% per point (down from 3% per point). [Nerf ]

Game Update 1.4: Terror From Beyond
  • Flash Bang no longer has an Energy cost. [Buff]
  • Cloaking Screen now has a 2 minute cooldown. [Buff - 30 second reduction]
  • Energy Screen has been redesigned. It is now called "Ghost." It finishes the cooldown on Sneak when you exit stealth and allows Sneak to be used out of stealth, increasing movement speed by 50% for 6 seconds. It still removes the penalty to healing done and received caused by Cloaking Screen. [Buff - New Class Feature.]
  • Advanced Cloaking now additionally reduces the cooldown of Sneak by 7.5 seconds per point. It also now reduces the cooldown of Cloaking Screen by 15 seconds per point (down from 30 seconds per point). [Nerf - reduces effectiveness of a talent point.]


There have been twenty-two changes that impacted Concealment Operatives since Launch, outside of system changes such as changing how surge performed. Of those twenty-two changes, eleven were reductions in ability for the class. As of right now, the reality of a Concealment Operative in PVE is as follows:
  • As a leveling class, the process is straight forwards and easy. Content goes quickly with the ability to stealth and sap.
  • As a strictly PVE level 50 daily class, all missions can be completed with little issue.
  • Hard Mode Flash Points are of little issue, but most groups over-gear them substantially now.
  • Crowd Control is where it needs to be with a fine mixture of stuns, mezs, sleeps, slows, and a root which help in both PVP and PVE.
  • AoE damage is good, without requiring any investment in skill points between Fragmentation Grenade, Carbine Burst, and Orbital Strike.
  • Currently, 30% of our damage is tied up in Backstab, Hidden Strike, and Acid Blade which all have positional requirements. This is not counting the loss of the Armor Penetration bonus from the Acid Blade buff.
  • In Melee range, a 50 with Rakata gear and mastery of rotations can obtain ~1350 dps. With best in slot, this can be pushed to ~1750 dps.
  • At a range, a 50 with Rakata gear and maintaing an energy neutral rotation of Poison Dart, Snipe, Blaster Rifle and Orbital Strike can obtain ~700 dps. With best in slot, this can be pushed to ~900 dps.
  • Subpar Operation Boss DPS by ten to fifteen percent. Every Melee Class performs better without positional requirements. All Operations require heavy movement which do no favors for the Agent.
  • If Operation contributions would be judged based on making 'trash pulls' easier, the Concealment Operative would be judged as one of the best to have around due to his CC and AOE potential. Unfortunately, trash mobs are just that... trash.
  • Low burst damage compared to current high performers, despite being billed as a burst class.
  • Very high skill level and focus are required to manage rotation, adrenals/relic, energy level, and positional requirements compared to other classes that perform substantially better. When an Operative lands in an Energy Rut, it is incredibly hard to recover.
  • The above, have created a stigma which have lead many raid groups from requesting rerolls if the player wants to DPS, or requesting a role change to Healer.

I wonder where we'll be in the new year. I can only hope that some improvements will come our way. The good news is, we can only go up. :| The bad news is we're pretty stagnant.

Note: I missed some nerfs!

Quote: Originally Posted by ZUZiK View Post
If you don't mind i'm gonna add something that haven't been mentioned in the OP:

- Acid Blade now cost 15 energy (used to be 10 or 9 I don't remember tbh);
- Backstab now cost 5 energy if specced, 10 default (used to be free if specced);
- Sleep Dart duration in pvp is now 8 sec (used to be 10).
Pages 1 - 4 | General Discussion of topic.
Page 4 - ? | Why are you still playing a Concealment Operative? If you were and stopped, why?

tatatan's Avatar

12.08.2012 , 08:28 AM | #2
Nicely summed ... +* to thread

tronot's Avatar

12.08.2012 , 02:53 PM | #3
The state of Operatives is very sad. I had to have the DPS Operative in my raid team switch to Powertech, because Operative DPS is just terrible.

KyoMamoru's Avatar

12.09.2012 , 01:54 AM | #4
I have a feeling that I may have hit the nail on the head a little too well in my first post. I don't think this thread is going to garner too many responses, which sucks. >>

Iyasu's Avatar

12.09.2012 , 04:22 AM | #5
Brilliant post, sir.....I salute you. I have always wanted to write a post about the failures of Bioware's handling of this class but never could write something as eloquent and accurate as this.

It seems that everything Bioware does becomes a hindrance for our class, no survivability, the new stun bubbles that interrupt our rotation before its begun, to name a few. Although I'm talking primarily of PvP I still feel for my PvE brothers out there struggling with a loathsome rotation and awful energy management.

Regrettably I think the lack of replies to your post OP are indicative to the amount of people who still play this class. We live in hope (and I despair to use this word) that someone somewhere at Bioware is fighting for our cause. Until that time I shall be forced to play my Marauder until our miracle (again I shouldn't be using words like this) arrives, I expect they will be Buffed a couple more times before the Operative class ever will.

+10 for OP

P.s I will be bumping this post till the class is fixed.

KyoMamoru's Avatar

12.09.2012 , 05:03 AM | #6
In a recent Podcast about PVP on Torwars, Rob Hinkle stated (18:00 minute mark) that there will be no class balancing happening in 1.6. He went on to further state, that it will become apparent to everyone during a future patch why no minor balancing has occurred in 1.5 and 1.6. I believe that this is more or less confirmation on an increased in level cap. With new skills, skill ranks, talents, and skill points, the current level 50 balance will have absolutely no worth in being analyzed or altered. As a class that really is only missing a few alterations to really be great again, this does give great promise for the future of Operatives.

This is idea further fueled by the gift of Tionese gear to all level 50s in 1.6, allowing them to start performing dailies without having to gear up in Flashpoints or using the GTN. They've removed the Battlemaster step in PVP as well. These are both steps you'd want to do to smooth the content curve in preparation for new level content. Unfortunately, if my assumption is correct, Operatives will continue to be in their current state for at least another eight (Feb 5th) to fourteen weeks (March 19th.) These dates are based off the eight week holiday dev cycle, and the six week stated dev cycle for new patches. However, Feb or March is supposed to be bringing us a retooled Ilum and Open World PVP. I literally cringe at the thought of the balance patch being pushed beyond those dates.

Iyasu's Avatar

12.09.2012 , 05:23 AM | #7
So we're pinning all our hopes on the assumption 'balance will be restored' with the increase in lvl cap thus given more abilities, which are then hit with the preverbal bat a few patches until the moaning stops again.......

I'm such a pessimist.

If they gave us the same shield/god mode Vanguards/Sentinals have respectively, I'd be happy. Survivability is what we need most. I would even forgo a gap closer for it (for PvP).

Marak's Avatar

12.09.2012 , 06:11 AM | #8
Quote: Originally Posted by KyoMamoru View Post
I have a feeling that I may have hit the nail on the head a little too well in my first post. I don't think this thread is going to garner too many responses, which sucks. >>
It's more that we're an endangered species of a class and no one comes here to read anything.
Cag - Juggernaut | V'ae - Sorcerer | V'ay - Mercenary
<The Jyse Legacy (50)> | Jedi Covenant
Aenik - Assassin | Vhay - Operative | K'rie - Sniper | Vhae - Marauder

Helig's Avatar

12.09.2012 , 06:44 AM | #9
The only thing that I remember about pre-nerf Operatives is that I, playing a PvP geared tank (heavy Endurance and Expertise) got torn down in one stunlock without a chance to retaliate outside a 2-minute CC break cooldown. Good riddance tbh.

I'm playing a post-nerf Scrapper Scoundrel (alternating with sawbones) and now levelling a Concealment Operative, and I'm satisfied. Granted, those are not my mains, but I enjoy playing them a lot.

That said, I do believe that they went a bit too far with nerfs.
"I'm not *giving* him cake, I'm *assaulting* him with cake!" - Pinkamena Diane Pie

KyoMamoru's Avatar

12.09.2012 , 01:33 PM | #10
Quote: Originally Posted by Helig View Post
The only thing that I remember about pre-nerf Operatives is that I, playing a PvP geared tank (heavy Endurance and Expertise) got torn down in one stunlock without a chance to retaliate outside a 2-minute CC break cooldown. Good riddance tbh.
There were a couple of reasons this was happening.

1) Expertise Adrenals stacked with Expertise power ups.
2) PVP Power Relics.
3) Without a Hidden Strike cooldown, Operatives could choose to utilize their defensive cooldown to pop out of combat, and hidden strike again. Doing so would, however, give your opponent full resolve due to the double hit of Jarring Strike.
4) Pre-nerf Surge was creating damage numbers that were way too high for the gear level we had then.

So in order for it to happen, an Operative was giving everything he had to kill you between relics, adrenals, and his defensive cooldown. Rather than fixing the major aspects of this that were working for all classes, the devs also nerfed the damage of Hidden Strike, the cool down of hidden strike, reduced the armor penetration of acid blade and also, they added four seconds of cooldown to back stab.