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Exfiltrate Should be Removed [version 2]

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > PvP
Exfiltrate Should be Removed [version 2]

Majspuffen's Avatar


Majspuffen
02.03.2019 , 05:26 PM | #1
In 2013 BioWare introduced an ability to the game called Exfiltrate/Scamper. From day one this ability caused severe issues in PvP where other players would frequently disappear after having used the ability. I made a thread about it, wishing for its removal: http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=697702.

My thread wasn't really met with approval. To summarize, I highlight three issues with the ability:
  • The ability is too strong
  • The ability looks ridiculous (i.e. poor animation quality)
  • The ability doesn't work and causes desync

I perhaps put too much focus on the first two items in that list when my main driving point was in the third. It has been almost six years since its inception and it is still just as bad as it has always been. Worse, in fact, because we've lost access to Cover; a unique ability to the MMORPG-genre, an anti-gap closer that was extremely powerful. Also, we've seen more gap closers being added to the game such as Mad Dash/Blate Blitz and Shadow Stride/Phantom Stride and none of these abilities works as designed (with the former one sharing the same issues Exfiltrate has). This is the reason why I'm posting this in the PvP forum rather than the Operative/Scoundrel forum; these abilities should be removed. I don't expect this idea is going to get a lot of traction within the current community, but hear me out.

The Problem with the Player Mentality
This is something I've witnessed not just in SWTOR but in World of Warcraft as well; people always think that the grass is greener on the other side and they start to complain. This guy from my original thread highlights my point fairly well:
Quote: Originally Posted by Glower View Post
Okay. But give to my dps operative phase walk, force speed and overload! And I do not mind 100% tech resist and others cool defCD's.

No? Then, please, dont suggest this bs.
Prior to 2.0, Operatives did not have any gap closers. But because Assassins had all of these cool abilities then Operatives must get something as well. Never mind that Operatives had other abilities such a strong ranged burst (Explosive Probe), the strongest ability for area denial in the game (Orbital Strike) and the aforementioned anti-gap closer, Cover. Also notice how we no longer have these abilities; they've all been replaced by weaker versions (Volatile Substance hits hard but is limited to 10m range and Toxic Haze does not interrupt cappers in PvP). Another thing Operatives had that Assassins lacked was a dispel which, to this day, is still a very useful ability (though arguably better in the past because of how many abilities have dispel immunity these days). My point is that Operatives weren't broken because they didn't have a gap closer. They had many other strengths to make up for it. But disillusioned players went on to the forums and complained and, subsequently, Operatives not only received a gap closer but the strongest mobility ability in the game.

This over-response from the developer is not uncommon, but it can have long and damaging ripple effects, as we've seen with Operatives. It extends beyond Operatives, however. Having started to level a Vanguard recently, it bothers me to no end that I've only got one attack I can use at 30m range. Being able to be a ranged tank was the main appeal of the Vanguard back in the day, and though Vanguards were never truly ranged, they did have an interesting mix of short and long range attacks. Today they're basically melee class, albeit a melee class with a generously long melee range (10 meters). And I'd accredit this to the desire to homogenize the classes, which kills the uniquity of the classes. When everyone eats the same green grass you've lost all the flavour.

What's the point? They'll never fix it anyway...
I do not dare to make the argument that it is in their best interest to remove all the abilities that do not work. A lot of players like these abilities and when playing solo the issues aren't as glaring, and I don't think the main bulk of their playerbase play the game for the PvP. However, if they were to adress the issue they'd either have to:
A: Fix the abilities, or
B: Remove them.

Personally I don't believe they're capable of doing A. So that leaves B. What are the odds that they'll do it, then? Well... World of Warcraft has done what's been dubbed "ability pruning" and it has been met with mixed responses. They basically culled half of the abilities and filed the classes down to their very cores. It would not be impossible for SWTOR to do the same, and if they were to would we really want to see an Operative with Force Speed, Phase Walk and Overload? Or do we want to see them with Explosive Probe, Orbital Strike and Cover? My answer is obvious. What do you think?

Thanks for reading.



TL;DR
Exfiltrate/Scamper, Blade Blitz/Mad Dash, Shadow Stride/Phantom Stride, Holotraverse/Trick Move do not work and should be removed from the game. Because they don't work. And if BioWare could have fixed them, they would have done it by now.

LD_Little_Dragon's Avatar


LD_Little_Dragon
02.03.2019 , 11:42 PM | #2
Quote: Originally Posted by Majspuffen View Post
Exfiltrate/Scamper, Blade Blitz/Mad Dash, Shadow Stride/Phantom Stride, Holotraverse/Trick Move do not work and should be removed from the game. Because they don't work. And if BioWare could have fixed them, they would have done it by now.
Disable in pvp maybe, but don't remove them. That would screw with pve a lot.

No one cares if roll dsyncs you in pve if your roll gets you out of the aoe or back in range to heal before someone dies.

While I agree that stride and holotraverse are horribly buggy even in pve (I use them mainly for ability procs) I need roll not for a gap closer, but for mobility.

Take roll away from my scoundrel/op and they will lose a lot of their pve survivability.

[although, why not just disable all mobility skills in PvP? It would be like everyone being electronetted for the whole warzone]
Stealthy heals, stealthy dps, stealthy tank.

Majspuffen's Avatar


Majspuffen
02.04.2019 , 02:32 AM | #3
Quote: Originally Posted by LD_Little_Dragon View Post
Disable in pvp maybe, but don't remove them. That would screw with pve a lot.
It is hard for me to talk about PvE as I've not done any serious PvE content since 1.2, but back then I played an Operative healer and I had no mobility cooldowns and did alright, and I can't remember our DPS operative complaining much at the time either. Perhaps the PvE climate is different today as boss encounters are tailored with the high mobility in mind.

However, what I'm suggesting is not only to remove the defectious mobility abilities but also to reinstate some long range attacks to Operatives/Scoundrels and Powertechs/Vanguards. Ideally, this should cushion the DPS drop for the low mobility; you can't get in and out of melee as fast as the Force Users, but while out of range you can maintain a portion of your DPS whereas theirs sharply decline. Quid pro quo.
Quote: Originally Posted by LD_Little_Dragon View Post
[although, why not just disable all mobility skills in PvP? It would be like everyone being electronetted for the whole warzone]
The sarcasm is not lost on me. Considering the current class balance, you couldn't just remove all of the mobility cooldowns without also removing most of the new knockbacks and root effects. Did Shadows/Assassins really need a root effect on Force Wave/Overload? This was originally a talent that only Sages/Sorcerers had access to.

No, the only way they could remove the dysfunctional mobility abilities would be if they also culled a lot of other stuff. It would slow down the pace of PvP, but I don't think that would be a bad thing. But that's my personal opinion, the game was more tactical in the past and today it is more reflex-based. Perhaps that's what people want, in spite of all the performance issues.

bUrself_'s Avatar


bUrself_
02.04.2019 , 08:34 PM | #4
defining abilities that sometimes bug as "not working" and therefore grounds for removal is ridiculous, especially when they work fine more often than not

shall we remove force speed because you disappear if you're doing it on a ramp? same for rocket out? leaps because you can fall through the floor when doing them?

Quote: Originally Posted by Majspuffen View Post
No, the only way they could remove the dysfunctional mobility abilities would be if they also culled a lot of other stuff. It would slow down the pace of PvP, but I don't think that would be a bad thing. But that's my personal opinion, the game was more tactical in the past and today it is more reflex-based. Perhaps that's what people want, in spite of all the performance issues.
Even if this happening were not a total fantasy, which it is, it is a half baked idea that would be far more likely to be a disaster than it would be to improve pvp in its current state

Quote: Originally Posted by Majspuffen View Post
However, what I'm suggesting is not only to remove the defectious mobility abilities but also to reinstate some long range attacks to Operatives/Scoundrels and Powertechs/Vanguards. Ideally, this should cushion the DPS drop for the low mobility; you can't get in and out of melee as fast as the Force Users, but while out of range you can maintain a portion of your DPS whereas theirs sharply decline. Quid pro quo.
Your quid pro quo suggests you don't grasp the importance of exfiltrate. This "quid pro quo" would leave operatives, especially the dps, as irredeemable garbage

Coloneli's Avatar


Coloneli
02.04.2019 , 11:10 PM | #5
Just 2 things:

1. This would make operatives basicly pts with worse dcds,less damage, less burst, less movement with alright offheals. No thanks

2. Literaly walking on stairs, ledges or on flat ground even can cause desync. As in with sprint disabled.

Seterade's Avatar


Seterade
02.04.2019 , 11:17 PM | #6
tbf. while in no way should it be removed the concealment ops roll needs a rework. even if you want to give them a new cd to compensate for the shift, its game breaking to have a move on 10 sec cd that resists all effects/dmg for up to 3 seconds.

I mean, how would we all like it if sorc bubble was spammable, since aside from stun breaking, bubble cast is basically the same thing? there is a reason bubble is on 2:30 sec cd.

and the core of why its issue isnt the effect, plenty of moves in this game have similar effects. its the cd timer. 10 secs is worlds ahead of any others class who can do this, additionaly, unlike mad dash and sniper roll (other variation of this) operative roll completely resists effects as well. if you use creeping terror on a rolling sniper he will resist it, however he will still be dotted when he stops rolling. a concealment operative will not, he wont take the dot at all.

personaly I would like it to be reworked into a temp stlth cloak after 2 rolls. meanwhile both, but the first one importantly, should resist stun and movement impair. I would honestly like to see the 200% white damage evasion moved completely to lethality oper. they already have a 30% def chance... which is oxymoron, since con has 3x better def chance+resist effect.

Majspuffen's Avatar


Majspuffen
02.05.2019 , 01:49 AM | #7
Quote: Originally Posted by bUrself_ View Post
defining abilities that sometimes bug as "not working" and therefore grounds for removal is ridiculous, especially when they work fine more often than not

shall we remove force speed because you disappear if you're doing it on a ramp? same for rocket out? leaps because you can fall through the floor when doing them?
It is true that Force Leap sometimes caused issues. I remember that sometimes the gap was not closed at all; as though it was cut half way. The difference is that this happened very rarely whereas Exfiltrating off of a ledge will always cause desync.

Quote: Originally Posted by bUrself_ View Post
Even if this happening were not a total fantasy, which it is, it is a half baked idea that would be far more likely to be a disaster than it would be to improve pvp in its current state
You are correct in that it is a fantasy. The only reason something like this would happen would be if Bioware performed an ability pruning, like WoW did. I am not just advocating for the removal of the dysfunctional abilities, I'm advocating for their removal alongside the pruning of a lot of unnecessary CC. With this in mind, would you say it'd still be a disaster?

You can't cherrypick my arguments and criticize them one by one, you have to look at it as a whole.

Quote: Originally Posted by bUrself_ View Post
Your quid pro quo suggests you don't grasp the importance of exfiltrate. This "quid pro quo" would leave operatives, especially the dps, as irredeemable garbage
I understand that it is important. But it's broken. When it comes to Operative's survivability, BioWare truly put all the eggs into one dysfunctional basket. As it stands, Exfiltrate is ridiculously powerful and Operatives would need a lot of compensation for losing it.

Majspuffen's Avatar


Majspuffen
02.05.2019 , 02:22 AM | #8
Quote: Originally Posted by Coloneli View Post
Just 2 things:

1. This would make operatives basicly pts with worse dcds,less damage, less burst, less movement with alright offheals. No thanks
By this logic, Operatives were Powertechs with worse DCDs in the original game. Was there no one utilizing dispel (known as Toxic Scan) and Cover? Or is throwing damage and running the only things people are capable of these days.
Quote: Originally Posted by Coloneli View Post
2. Literaly walking on stairs, ledges or on flat ground even can cause desync. As in with sprint disabled.
That's a straw man argument. Desync can happen if you walk on flat ground so Exfiltrate is okay? What you're saying is not inherently untrue; desync has always been an issue. But there are degrees. Desync can happen if you run off a ledge. It is more likely to happen if you have a speed boost of sorts. If that is the state of your game you don't introduce an ability that gives a sudden burst of speed that the engine then can't calculate. There's a big difference between can happen and always happens. No class is worse when it comes to desync than the Operative.
Quote: Originally Posted by Seterade View Post
tbf. while in no way should it be removed the concealment ops roll needs a rework. even if you want to give them a new cd to compensate for the shift, its game breaking to have a move on 10 sec cd that resists all effects/dmg for up to 3 seconds.
I can agree that Concealment could use a gap closer of sorts, but not Exfiltrate because of the performance issues. It's sad that they couldn't even get Holotraverse to function, otherwise I wouldn't mind recommending that as a gap closer, but alas. Concealment Operatives did, once upon a time, get a speed run boost from using Sneak outside of stealth, if I recall correctly, but Sneak has also been removed from the game and these days finding a Stealther is near impossible unless you can guess their position with an AoE. :/ ... but now I'm derailing out on a tangent and I digress.

In my "fantasy", as it were, whatever they were to give Operatives should be within the bounds of what the engine can handle.

Coloneli's Avatar


Coloneli
02.05.2019 , 06:06 AM | #9
Iím talking about how it would be for them now not how it was in the past with classes having significantly different utility compared to now. Not to mention the difference in TTK. Iíll be honest most people donít use cleanse dosnt matter the class. And cover? Vaguely useful but this isnít even close to being a core ability like roll.

Desync is one of your main arguments. Going by your logic every speedbost in the game isnít working and needs to be removed. Same with phasewalk as itís very common for sorcs to elevate to 100+ meters.

So letís have a count for every ability that would be seen as broken with this logic

Predation
Hydraulic overrrides
Phase walk
Force speed
Exfiltrate
Covered escape
Fore camouflage
Concealment Countermeasures
Covers escape (sniper utility)
Mad dash
Force leap
Guardian leap
Holotraverse
Force pull
Phantom stride
Rocket charge
Jet charge
Grapple

bUrself_'s Avatar


bUrself_
02.05.2019 , 07:56 AM | #10
Quote: Originally Posted by Majspuffen View Post
You are correct in that it is a fantasy. The only reason something like this would happen would be if Bioware performed an ability pruning, like WoW did. I am not just advocating for the removal of the dysfunctional abilities, I'm advocating for their removal alongside the pruning of a lot of unnecessary CC. With this in mind, would you say it'd still be a disaster?
SWTOR has pruned abilities in recent expansions - small stuff with relatively low impact, crushing darkness on sins for example. The second you start mass pruning things of huge importance to the metagame like gap closers, DCDs, and CCs you are MASSIVELY messing with the state of the game.

Balancing games with very different classes is hard. Even if you're doing small, targeted changes. Completely removing abilities and mechanics that have been in the game for years (and were therefore balanced around for years) is basically guaranteed to be a mess.


Quote: Originally Posted by Majspuffen View Post
I understand that it is important. But it's broken. When it comes to Operative's survivability, BioWare truly put all the eggs into one dysfunctional basket. As it stands, Exfiltrate is ridiculously powerful and Operatives would need a lot of compensation for losing it.
How is it "broken," exactly? It's certainly not overpowered seeing as how operative dps have been a niche, middling choice for practically the entire life of the game. Operative healers have had their heyday but exfiltrate had little to do with that.

I'm not in love with exfiltrate. It seems to me their reliance on it rather than on traditional mitigation DCDs has a lot to do with op's apparently permanent status as a niche, 1v1ing, objective-doing, off healer that is always outclassed in trinity team fights by at least a few classes that don't need to spend dozens of GCDs rolling around to not die. But one thing op dps certainly are not is overpowered.