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Suggestions on improving Operative DPS defensives in PvE

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Public Test Server
Suggestions on improving Operative DPS defensives in PvE

joshrva's Avatar


joshrva
06.27.2022 , 04:01 PM | #1
Edit/update: please see my first reply in this thread for data on just how underrepresented Operative and Mercenary DPS are in NiM content.

Intro

Hi, I'm creating this thread in an attempt to bring awareness to the current disparity between Operative's defensives in PvE compared to other classes. I know there are currently no Operative balance changes on PTS, but I hope there will be in the future because both Operative DPS specs are in dire need of a defensive rework. Like the threads for Mercenary DPS in this forum, I will state the issues the class is currently facing and how I think those issues can be fixed. I will also attempt to be as concise as possible.

First of all, before I talk about the defensives, I want to mention where the Operative DPS specs stand purely DPS-wise in comparison to other specs. Both Operative DPS specs are in a good spot DPS-wise, with both specs parsing above 30k in 330 item rating gear. Lethality has slightly less single target sustain than concealment but has much better AoE and is in a balanced spot compared to other classes. Concealment has more single target sustain in exchange for having close to no AoE damage and having to remain in 4m range for the majority of its attacks. I believe that no changes need to be made to the output of either Operative DPS spec.

Defensives, or the lack thereof

Operative has two defensive cooldowns, neither of them being very effective in most PvE encounters. Additionally, Operative has no way to mitigate AoE damage, while most other classes do.

Shield Probe summons a probe droid that projects a shield around you for up to X seconds, absorbing Y damage. This defensive is, quite frankly, pitiful. The damage shield probe absorbs is not even close to enough to sufficiently mitigate any spikes of damage taken in PvE.

Evasion increases your chance to dodge melee and ranged attacks by 200% for X seconds. This would be a very effective defensive cooldown if there was more melee/ranged attacks in PvE, but unfortunately, there is not. The vast majority of damage taken in PvE is force/tech and AoE.

Additionally, Lethality has Revitalizers - restores 5% of total health every 3 seconds and reduces damage received by 20% for the duration. This is actually an effective defensive cooldown against sustained damage, however, it has the problem that it is attached to an offensive cooldown.

AoE Damage Reduction

As I stated previously, the vast majority of damage taken in PvE is force/tech and AoE, and Operative DPS is the only melee DPS with no AoE damage reduction. This means that there is virtually no reason to bring Operative DPS in difficult PvE content instead of other melee classes which have effective defensives and AoE damage reduction.

Suggested Changes

First, it is important to mention that overdoing the changes will make Operative Heals unbalanced in PvE and Operative DPS unbalanced in PvP. Operative Heals are currently by far the strongest healer, so adding any defensives would only make them more overpowered than they currently are. Similarly, Operative DPS, specifically Lethality, is overperforming in PvP where its defensives are more effective. For these reasons, I believe that giving AoE damage reduction only to Operative DPS specs is the most effective way to solve this issue. In PvP, there is far less AoE damage, so adding AoE damage reduction there will not be detrimental. Additionally, no other heal specs have access to AoE damage reduction, so Medicine Operative should not either because that would be unbalanced without giving the other heal specs AoE damage reduction as well.

Like the other DPS classes, this AoE damage reduction should be 60% for roughly 10-15 seconds and added to an already existing defensive cooldown, typically the threat drop.

Evasion increases your chance to dodge melee and ranged attacks by 200% for X seconds. Additionally, all area effect damage is reduced by 60% for 10 seconds (Lethality and Concealment only).

Additionally, Revitalizers should be separated from stim boost and be made a separate defensive cooldown available to both Lethality and Concealment (but not Medicine).

Revitalizers - restores 5% of total health every 3 seconds and reduces damage received by 20% for 15 seconds. 2-minute cooldown.

ArchingBeast's Avatar


ArchingBeast
06.27.2022 , 04:37 PM | #2
Good work, these are good suggestions for balance.
Neophyte - Tulak Hord
<Unlucky> <Anubis>
your average Power Yield enjoyer who can't let go of his love for the Mercenary

joshrva's Avatar


joshrva
06.28.2022 , 01:13 AM | #3
Quote: Originally Posted by joshrva View Post
This means that there is virtually no reason to bring Operative DPS in difficult PvE content
Quote: Originally Posted by Gyronamics View Post
Mercenary DPS is invisible in challenging content due to poor performance
Quote: Originally Posted by ArchingBeast View Post
there is no reason to bring a merc DPS into a raid.

To expand on these claims, I made a spreadsheet and added up all of the DPS parses for each 8m NiM boss fight in 7.0 from https://parsely.io. That is, as in, the number of parses from each class for each 8m NiM boss fight, from each server, in 7.0. I then totaled the results and calculated the percentage each class represents. I only counted DPS spec parses (I didn't include Tank or Heal parses), and I couldn't count Nefra or Dash'roode because there were too many parses so there was no way to figure out the exact amount of parses from most classes for those fights because the website only shows the top 50. Also note that these are in imperial terms, but they include mirrored classes.

Here are the results:

Totals:
Assassin - 855 - 8.58%
Juggernaut - 1709 - 17.15%
Marauder - 2582 - 25.92%
Mercenary - 124 - 1.24%
Operative - 196 - 1.97%

Powertech - 2382 - 23.91%
Sniper - 1066 - 10.70%
Sorcerer - 1049 - 10.53%
Total - 9963 - 100%

As you can see, both Operative and Mercenary make up less than 2% of all parses. I don't think I need to say how ridiculous this is. Meanwhile, Marauder and Powertech each make up around 25% of all parses. But don't worry, it gets worse when we look at just the apex bosses (final boss fights).

Totals, Apex Bosses:
Assassin - 105 - 8.20%
Juggernaut - 145 - 11.33%
Marauder - 353 - 27.58%
Mercenary - 13 - 1.02%
Operative - 11 - 0.86%
Powertech - 418 - 32.66%
Sniper - 134 - 10.47%
Sorcerer - 101 - 7.89%
Total - 1280 - 100%

Mercenary and Operative combined make up less than 2% of all parses from apex bosses. Meanwhile, Powertech and Marauder combined makeup 60%.

Here is the spreadsheet. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets...it?usp=sharing

Loc_n_lol's Avatar


Loc_n_lol
07.01.2022 , 03:31 AM | #4
Quote: Originally Posted by joshrva View Post
Additionally, Revitalizers should be separated from stim boost and be made a separate defensive cooldown available to both Lethality and Concealment (but not Medicine).[/COLOR]
I think healers should have this one too. Not the AoE DR obviously because the other healers don't have it, but the complete lack of (credible) defensive cooldowns is a problem for operative healers too. Yes the class is overpowered in operations at the moment, but that's a healing output problem, and it should be addressed in that area, not by leaving the survivability at zero.

joshrva's Avatar


joshrva
07.01.2022 , 06:41 AM | #5
Quote: Originally Posted by Loc_n_lol View Post
I think healers should have this one too. Not the AoE DR obviously because the other healers don't have it, but the complete lack of (credible) defensive cooldowns is a problem for operative healers too. Yes the class is overpowered in operations at the moment, but that's a healing output problem, and it should be addressed in that area, not by leaving the survivability at zero.
I agree, but if they get it without kolto burst getting reworked they would just be too unbalanced like I said. If they do rework kolto burst however, they should absolutely get revitalizers in exchange.

CaesarVI's Avatar


CaesarVI
07.09.2022 , 08:26 AM | #6
Thank you for bringing attention to the matter of Operative DPS. I also wanted to address this topic since launch of the expansion but your post is far better than what i would have ever done Well backed up with statistics and not just a "feeling". I knew that Operative isn't played much right now but the numbers are alarmingly low (together with Merc of course).

Operative DPS needs some changes asap. I'm playing mostly Operative since 3.0 and this class was never in a worse state than now. In a lot of instances you really have trouble surviving the constant AoE attacks while on the other hand you don't bring anything to the table for your group. It's really frustrating and unrewarding playing this class in the current state.

I really like your suggestions and i hope the Dev team gets some inspiration from it.

Revitalizers being tied to an offensive CD always bothered me but wasn't as much of a problem until now. But with the loss of AoE DR it's the only meaningful defensive. Making it an extra ability would greatly increase the value of it and you don't have to sacrifice DPS by delaying Stim boost.

Like you said AoE DR is needed - especially for melee classes. Passivly granted AoE DR didn't need any skill, so I'm in for the concept that you have to actively use an ability. I'm not sure if I like tieing it to Evasion tho because it already has other use cases. Maybe returning countermeasures with AoE DR and aggro drop would be the better choice but BioWare is probably not too keen on bringing back old abilities that got patched out. If that is the case Evasion is the best option.