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Sniper Feedback

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JackieKo's Avatar


JackieKo
08.24.2021 , 08:22 AM | #1 This is the last staff post in this thread.  
With PTS now live, you can help test the Sniper Combat Style.

Please answer the following questions:
  • Do the abilities available make this experience feel like you are playing a Sniper? Please explain why or why not.
  • Is the ability tree easy to understand?
  • If you have feedback on the different disciplines, please note your feedback accordingly so we can track it.
When providing feedback, please answer in as much detail as possible to help us understand your thought process and line of thinking.

If you have feedback about the Sniper Combat Style, please post it here.

Thank you!
Jackie | Community Manager
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Screaming_Ziva's Avatar


Screaming_Ziva
08.24.2021 , 03:52 PM | #2
If I'm doing this right, we now have to choose between Orbital Strike, Ballistic Shield and Hololocate?

Elssha's Avatar


Elssha
08.24.2021 , 04:02 PM | #3
Quote: Originally Posted by Screaming_Ziva View Post
If I'm doing this right, we now have to choose between Orbital Strike, Ballistic Shield and Hololocate?
NGL, with earlier classes losing long-standing/iconic abilities, the fact that HOLOLOCATE isn't the first ability snipped off snipers (not a choice, full-on gone) is quite insulting... and I've not even seen what they plan for sins yet.

That and Merc reflect not disappearing will be just rubbing salt into other class wounds.

Baletraeger's Avatar


Baletraeger
08.24.2021 , 04:51 PM | #4
Snipers lose orbital strike, the circle is complete
Troomis | Star Forge | Twitter

LordCamTheGreat's Avatar


LordCamTheGreat
08.24.2021 , 06:17 PM | #5
Sniper first impressions:

Abilities removed / placed in ABC:
Removed flashbang, shatter snipe (honestly forgot it existed cus I never use it)
ABC (hololocate, orbital strike, ballistic shield all share an ABC slot), target acquired, maim

Honestly I'm surprised leg shot is still there.

General first impressions:
  • Survivability has been reduced, but not to the extent I was expecting.
  • Shield probe is still in as a base ability, so is diversion (was worried diversion would be removed so am happy it's here).
  • Evasion is completely gone unless you take a level 20 skill that bakes the old evasion into countermeasures and also resets covered escape.
  • Covered escape appears to be here on all classes which is great news.
  • A couple of the ability choices I honestly won't take. target acquired is a meh ability, used a couple times a fight for a small damage boost. I've written some thoughts about how I'd rework it further down.
  • Hololocate is useful in raids and pvp, but if you take that you lose damage in your opener by missing orbital strike, and you lose ballistic shield which is invaluable in harder content. Engineerign also suffers by losing orbital strike.

Orbital strike should be a baseline ability and target acquired needs a serious buff if it is to compete with the passives on its level which are all focused around energy regeneration.


Marksmanship impressions:
  • Oh lord the CRIT. Passives seem to be about either going all in on damage or gaining some survivability.
  • More crits or fewer but bigger crits for ambush through laze target reductions etc.
  • My absolute favourite addition is the relentless ambush skill which reduces the cooldown of ambush by 1.5 seconds (stacking 3 times).
  • This really shakes up the rotation and is a tonne of fun. Big thumbs up for marksmanship.

Virulence impressions:
  • Virulence appears to be capable of higher burst windows with the way laze target now works. I love that its effects have been changed between disciplines so that it's not just a 100% crit boost, but instead offers a meaningful impact on your rotations.
  • The base rotation seems the same as on live, but with an improved laze target (now viral targeting).
  • I'd need to parse all the specs to cement my feelings on whether virulent targetting should have more interactions with the rotation such as reducing the cooldown every takedown or something like that.

Engineering impressions:
  • This is where the lack of orbital bombardment is most notably felt. Engineering has a passive reducing the cooldown and activation time of orbital strike by a substantial amount. This all but forces you to take orbital bombardment over ballistic shield and hololocate - or else you lose a fairly powerful filler in your rotation.
  • I really like how you can pick skills to really tailor how you are currently playing the game - reseting the cooldown of explosive probe when you kill a target allows you to chain together kills on mobs in open world, while against bosses you can focus on increasing the duration on systems upgrade (engineering laze target variant) for more damage over time.
  • There also seems to be a bug where you cannot pick calculated measures without it selecting critical interrogation when you close the abilities window. But, if I kept the tab open it still worked which allowed me to test it - and it is very good when it works.
  • In general, the base rotation feels fine apart from the lack of orbital bombardment.


Overall closing thoughts:

While on live energy issues are negated by the best in slot set bonus and use of entrench, on the PTS there don't seem to be energy issues in general if you follow rotations well. There are even options to generate more energy through things like crits or dealing damage during burst windows which allows for more flexibility in how you play.

Though I am an advocate for keeping more skills, I admit I won't miss target acquired in its current state. It just doesn't do anywhere near enough to justify taking over any of the other passives across all 3 disciplines.
I dislike losing both stuns and orbital strike. Maim isn't worth taking in most content in my opinion, and choosing between raid survivability, mobility and orbital strike is a weird choice - especially for engineering.

Orbital strike absolutely should be a baseline skill since it is a rotational ability for engineering.

Since all 3 specs share energy regeneration passives in the same slot as target acquired, I would instead change target acquired to remove the energy cost of your next ability or something along those lines. This would allow you to choose whether to have a sustainable rotation with the passives, or go for the occasional extra few abilities with target acquired and negate the energy cost of say, series of shots to recover - much like mercenary does with unload or blazing bolts.

Overall I'm mostly happy with these changes (especially keeping diversion). The laze target changes are amazing, 7-8 second cooldown ambush and the focus on crits is a lot of fun. I just miss orbital strike on engineering and think target acquired needs a change to stay relevant.


As to the actual questions:
The core sniper experience remains apart from a couple missing things. You still want to stay immobile and shoot out of your hidey hole from range - even more so with the removal of a lot of survivability. To me, the sniper is a ranged class with weaker personal defensives, but strong raid utility and offensive power. Orbital strike is such a unique ability in the game and is needed in the engineering rotation as a high priority filler. Ballistic shield is extremely useful in raids and is one of the key reasons raiding teams would want a sniper, so there isn't really a choice between it and the other 2 abilities unless you play engineering.

The ABC ability tree is very well designed and I love that it also shows not only the passives that are linked to the previously gained ability, but also the list of base discipline passives you gain on the side - this is a really good design and is exactly what I was hoping for. Very easy to change on the fly.
I made a website containing notes about combat styles and ABC choices for reference while testing the PTS
Jack of all classes, master of some. Always remember that cake is a lie.

Darthanimus's Avatar


Darthanimus
08.24.2021 , 06:24 PM | #6
So immediately I see a problem with Shatter Snipe and marksmanship. We need to cast snipe x2 in a row to finish the CD of followthrough, meaning the trauma debuff that is now inbuilt with snipe with this selection, will just get refreshed on a target, this seems like its not fit for purpose and disadvantaged with marksmanship.

Please change this. Suggestions include, maybe increasing the debuff duration to 20 seconds while keeping trauma debuff at 20% for 2 snipes in a row for mm only, or increasing the % of trauma received to like 30% after 2 snipes for the 10 sec for mm only. Or change the rotation to just one snipe to finish the CD of follow through, I am not sure of a solution but it feels like marksmanship has got the bad end of the deal with this.

Snipers in general will lose ballistic shield heals, also lost heals on covered escape, and also lost flashbang and evasion. Feels like snipers and slingers are taking a big hit with the nerf hammer IMO. Snipers and slingers will be far less seen in pvp next expac, I certainly wont be maining one in the future as I have in the past.
Scorpio finds the starforge, becomes an immortal AI god, and gets worshiped by Ewoks.

Red Eclipse

cpookie's Avatar


cpookie
08.24.2021 , 07:40 PM | #7
overall i really liked these changes to sniper particularly the changes to laze target for both engi and viru , it makes the cd feel better for both specs with a little specific flavor added to it. my one major gripe is that engi specifically cannot always take orbital strike which is an rather important part of the rotation especially given its has a passive that specifically enhances orbital. personally i think orbital should be baseline for engi if not all snipers or engi passive that upgrades orbital should affect something else.

FlameYOL's Avatar


FlameYOL
08.24.2021 , 08:17 PM | #8
I shall do a long textwall covering what I think of each section of it and why I chose what I chose, as well as suggestions on how to improve if I can come up with any.

Level 15 - Critical Grenade while not yet functional sounds like a great idea to make corrosive grenade even more important to your rotation, a 20% critical chance is HUGE.
Level 20- Evasive maneuvers, I like being mobile so having something that resets the CD of covered escape is nice. Maim I feel should still remain a base ability though, I'll miss that stun, maybe fragmentation grenade can be turned into a stun for all types of enemies, not AOE but rather "primary target is also stunned regardless of whether or not its a silver/gold/player".
Level 30- Corrosive targeting, more crit damage to cull is always nice, the other two passives don't really seem that useful to me for endgame PvE, perhaps in PvP they'd have a good use. Especially the slow passive (corrosive impair).
Level 35- Target acquired, I like the extra damage boost (in fact I'd say this ability should probably remain baseline) and the other two passives don't interest me that much, focused integration could be good trade-off much like the ultraviolet blast tactical item however in its current iteration I don't believe a 20 second integrated toxins is worth a +30 seconds cooldown. Unless of course we had a set bonus or something that increased our stacks of viral targeting, allowing us to make better usage of this.
Level 50- Snap shot, allows me to remain more mobile by instantly casting lethal shot. I like playing my snipers quite mobile.
Level 60- Reestablish range, again I like being mobile so having an extra root breaker is nice.
Level 70- My only criticism here is the choice between orbital strike, which is an aoe damage ability, and ballistic shield which is a defensive one... why is an aoe damage ability being picked over defensive cooldowns I got ballistic shield which is more useful IMO but I'd miss my orbital strike, its such an iconic ability. Hololocate though, I won't miss, don't think it should've ever been given to snipers in the first place.
Level 80- I'd pick calculated pursuit since it allows me to channel lethal shot while moving, again I like my virulence sniper to be mobile.
A man can have anything...If he's willing to sacrifice everything

amazingwhales's Avatar


amazingwhales
08.24.2021 , 09:50 PM | #9
*I play a currently lv 67 marksmanship sniper, and not familiar with all the abilities, and not really know the rotation tm*

I voiced my more general opinions in the operative post, so I'll stick to sniper things and questions here. First, the lvl 70 decision is very hard, and honestly a bit unreasonable - having to choose between ballistic shield and orbital strike (I am unfamiliar with the last ability, but it seems very useful). ballistic shield and orbital strike are two of the main abilities I associate with the sniper, and they are some of my most used abilities, and very useful in a group setting as well. I would spread these out.

Otherwise, this felt pretty authentic to the marksmanship sniper, and the ability tree was useful and understandable. I expanded on my general opinions on my operative post, but keep moving in this direction, no one likes that you are taking away abilities, but I'm guessing that you're set on it, so if you are going to do it continue to improve the clarity and customization.

The_Hightower's Avatar


The_Hightower
08.25.2021 , 02:12 AM | #10
Quote: Originally Posted by Darthanimus View Post
So immediately I see a problem with Shatter Snipe and marksmanship. We need to cast snipe x2 in a row to finish the CD of followthrough, meaning the trauma debuff that is now inbuilt with snipe with this selection, will just get refreshed on a target, this seems like its not fit for purpose and disadvantaged with marksmanship.

Please change this. Suggestions include, maybe increasing the debuff duration to 20 seconds while keeping trauma debuff at 20% for 2 snipes in a row for mm only, or increasing the % of trauma received to like 30% after 2 snipes for the 10 sec for mm only. Or change the rotation to just one snipe to finish the CD of follow through, I am not sure of a solution but it feels like marksmanship has got the bad end of the deal with this.

Snipers in general will lose ballistic shield heals, also lost heals on covered escape, and also lost flashbang and evasion. Feels like snipers and slingers are taking a big hit with the nerf hammer IMO. Snipers and slingers will be far less seen in pvp next expac, I certainly wont be maining one in the future as I have in the past.
Well as a first step, it would be nice in case snipe/lethal shot would apply trauma to the target not to yourself...

So

BUG REPORT: Snipe/lethal shot applies trauma to the player not to the target