Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?


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Swamp Slogger

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Joined: Wednesday, 29th December 2010, 22:32

Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 01:23

Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

I was poking around the development wiki today and I noticed a new addition to the 0.9 plan under Urgent: "Nerf berserkers (nearly thrice as many wins in T0.8 as the 2nd most popular class!)" I'm not sure if I like this reasoning, and there hasn't been any discussion about berserkers anywhere on the wiki itself, so I thought I'd bring it up here and see what people think.

Here's a big data dump of a bunch of stats I collected about classes and gods in 0.8 and 0.7 for reference. (I wish I could use spoiler tags or something to make this more organized, but this is the best I can do without taking up loads of space.)
  Code:
#Played 0.8 by class
6334x Berserker,
6131x Wizard,
5285x Fighter,
4340x Wanderer,
3271x Crusader,
2771x Enchanter,
2664x Necromancer,
2531x Transmuter,
2297x Air Elementalist,
2179x Monk,
1985x Ice Elementalist,
1764x Conjurer,
1627x Abyssal Knight,
1457x Fire Elementalist,
1450x Summoner,
1441x Earth Elementalist,
1385x Hunter, 1385x Assassin,
1382x Stalker, 1332x Venom Mage,
1220xGladiator,
1205x Priest,
1090x Death Knight,
1003x Artificer,
930x Chaos Knight,
886x Warper,
522x Healer

#Won in 0.8 by class
57x Berserker,
21x Fighter,
18x Ice Elementalist,
17x Earth Elementalist,
17x Necromancer,
16x Wizard,
16x Crusader,
16x Transmuter,
14x Enchanter,
14x Hunter,
13x Fire Elementalist,
12x Air Elementalist,
12x Gladiator,
11x Conjurer,
10x Monk,
10x Summoner,
9x Healer,
8x Wanderer,
8x Assassin,
7x Priest,
6x Artificer,
6x Venom Mage,
5x Stalker,
5x Abyssal Knight,
4xDeath Knight,
4x Chaos Knight,
3x Warper

#Win Ratio in 0.8 by class
9/522x Healer [1.72%],
17/1441x Earth Elementalist [1.18%],
14/1385x Hunter [1.01%],
12/1220x Gladiator [0.98%],
18/1985x Ice Elementalist [0.91%],
57/6336x Berserker [0.90%],
13/1457x Fire Elementalist [0.89%],
10/1450x Summoner [0.69%],
17/2665x Necromancer [0.64%],
16/2531x Transmuter [0.63%],
11/1764x Conjurer [0.62%],
6/1003x Artificer [0.60%],
7/1205x Priest [0.58%],
8/1385x Assassin [0.58%],
12/2297x Air Elementalist [0.52%],
14/2771x Enchanter [0.51%],
16/3272x Crusader [0.49%],
10/2179x Monk [0.46%],
6/1332x Venom Mage [0.45%],
4/930x Chaos Knight [0.43%],
21/5285x Fighter [0.40%],
4/1090x Death Knight [0.37%],
5/1382x Stalker [0.36%],
3/886x Warper [0.34%],
5/1627x Abyssal Knight [0.31%],
16/6131x Wizard [0.26%],
8/4340x Wanderer [0.18%]

-----

#Games played in 0.7 by class
15489x Wanderer,
15302x Wizard,
13582x Berserker,
12413x Fighter,
12268x Enchanter,
11719x Crusader,
10430x Chaos Knight,
10253x Necromancer,
8907x Transmuter,
7053x Fire Elementalist,
4938x Priest,
4789x Ice Elementalist,
4711x Monk,
4409x Paladin,
4287x Assassin,
4080x Artificer,
4033x Conjurer,
3649x Air Elementalist,
3478x Hunter,
3291x Reaver,
3287x Stalker,
3052x Summoner,
2938x Venom Mage,
2729x Gladiator,
2314x Earth Elementalist,
2255x Arcane Marksman,
2032x Warper,
1271x Healer

#Won in 0.7 by class (674)
94x Enchanter,
63x Crusader,
57x Necromancer,
50x Fire Elementalist,
 46x Berserker,
40x Wizard,
38x Transmuter,
33x Assassin,
32x Ice Elementalist,
22x Stalker,
18x Venom Mage,
18x Fighter,
17x Chaos Knight,
17x Conjurer,
14x Reaver,
14x Hunter,
13x Monk,
12x Air Elementalist,
11x Warper,
10x Gladiator,
9x Priest,
 8x Paladin,
7x Wanderer,
7x Arcane Marksman, 7x
6x Healer,
6x Artificer,
5x Earth Elementalist
 
#Win ratio in 0.7 by class
33/4287x Assassin [0.77%],
94/12268x Enchanter [0.77%],
50/7053x Fire Elementalist [0.71%],
22/3287x Stalker [0.67%],
32/4789x Ice Elementalist [0.67%],
18/2938x Venom Mage [0.61%],
57/10253x Necromancer [0.56%],
11/2032x Warper [0.54%],
63/11719x Crusader [0.54%],
6/1271x Healer [0.47%],
38/8907x Transmuter [0.43%],
14/3291x Reaver [0.43%],
17/4033x Conjurer [0.42%],
14/3478x Hunter [0.40%],
10/2729x Gladiator [0.37%],
46/13582x Berserker [0.34%],
12/3649x Air Elementalist [0.33%],
7/2255x Arcane Marksman [0.31%],
13/4711x Monk [0.28%],
40/15302x Wizard [0.26%],
7/3052x Summoner [0.23%],
5/2314x Earth Elementalist [0.22%],
9/4938x Priest [0.18%],
8/4409x Paladin [0.18%],
17/10430x Chaos Knight [0.16%],
6/4080x Artificer [0.15%],
18/12413x Fighter [0.15%],
7/15489x Wanderer [0.05%]

-------------------------------------------

#Games played by god in 0.8
6685x Trog,
1713x Okawaru,
1640x Lugonu,
1383x Vehumet,
1356x Sif Muna,
1191x Yredelemnul,
1053x Xom,
843x Makhleb,
776x Kikubaaqudgha,
718x Beogh,
700x Ashenzari,
621x Nemelex Xobeh,
 607x Elyvilon,
537x Zin,
425x Cheibriados,
 247x The Shining One, 1
56x Fedhas,
25x Jiyva

#Win ratio by god in 0.8
3/25x Jiyva [12.00%],
18/247x The Shining One [7.29%],
39/843x Makhleb [4.63%],
 25/776x Kikubaaqudgha [3.22%],
22/700x Ashenzari [3.14%],
14/621x Nemelex Xobeh [2.25%],
31/1383x Vehumet [2.24%],
37/1713x Okawaru [2.16%],
27/1356x Sif Muna [1.99%],
7/425x Cheibriados [1.65%],
8/537x Zin [1.49%],
2/156x Fedhas [1.28%],
77/6685x Trog [1.15%],
6/607x Elyvilon [0.99%],
7/1640x Lugonu [0.43%],
 3/1053x Xom [0.28%],
2/1191x Yredelemnul [0.17%],
1/718x Beogh [0.14%],
10/39207x  [0.03%]

---------

#Games played by gods in 0.7
14275x Trog,
7502x Makhleb,
6049x Okawaru,
4685x The Shining One,
3692x Sif Muna,
3443x Vehumet,
2961x Xom,
2863x Beogh,
2271x Kikubaaqudgha,
2100x Lugonu,
1735x Yredelemnul,
1684x Nemelex Xobeh,
1614x Elyvilon,
1308x Cheibriados,
789x Zin,
648x Fedhas,
175x Jiyva

#Win ratio of gods in 0.7
38/175x Jiyva [21.71%],
78/2271x Kikubaaqudgha [3.43%],
41/1684x Nemelex Xobeh [2.43%],
68/3443x Vehumet [1.98%],
103/6049x Okawaru [1.70%],
61/3692x Sif Muna [1.65%],
10/648x Fedhas [1.54%],
12/789x Zin [1.52%],
58/4685x The Shining One [1.24%],
74/7502x Makhleb [0.99%],
11/1308x Cheibriados [0.84%],
12/2100x Lugonu [0.57%],
8/1614x Elyvilon [0.50%],
8/1735x Yredelemnul [0.46%],
56/14275x Trog [0.39%],
4/2863x Beogh [0.14%],
4/2961x Xom [0.14%],
28/121165x  [0.02%]



Berserkers have a large flat number of wins, but I don’t see why that should matter. Win ratio should be a better indicator of whether or not a class is overpowered, shouldn't it? The Berserker’s win ratio is good, but it’s no better than the Ice or Fire Elementalist (and it’s notably lower than the Gladiator’s). And, to my knowledge, equalizing win rates across all classes or races isn’t a design goal of Dungeon Crawl. Some are known to be easier or harder to play than others and that’s fine. So there doesn’t seem to be a problem there.

Also note that Trog’s win rate compared to other gods isn’t very good at all…only 1.15% compared to Makhleb at 4.63%, Kikubaaqudgha and Ashenzari at above 3%, and Nemelex, Vehumet, Okawaru, and Sif Muna all above 2%. It’s hard to draw hard conclusions from this because there’s no way to know how many of those Makhlebs are late converts for the postgame (I’m positive TSO’s 7.29% is almost totally a result of that sort of thing). Plus, Trog takes a hit from all the young Berserkers who are tragically struck down on dungeon level 4 or whatever whereas Sif Muna is unmarred by all the Air Elementalists who would have worshipped her if they hadn’t died before seeing the temple. Even so, Berserkers are one of the easiest classes to hit the temple with, and even if you double Trog’s rate it’d still be around the middle of the pack. This suggests to me that Trog isn’t amazingly good at helping his followers win compared to other popular gods. So that doesn’t indicate a problem either.

The real reason the Berserker has so many wins is because the next three classes below it (Fighter, Wizard, Wanderer) are well below-average in win rate. Then Crusaders and Enchanters, who are still only average or slightly below. Then Necromancers and Transmuters, who are just starting to be a bit above-average. It’s not until the Ice Elementalist at a whopping #11 that you finally hit one of the classes who are close to Berserkers in win ratio. If it just so happened that the top five most played classes went Berserker, Ice Elementalist, Fire Elementalist, Necromancer, Transmuter, then the list of flat number of wins by class would be nice and smooth and nobody would complain anymore, even though the relative power of the classes measured by win ratio would be identical to what it is now. So why nerf the Berserker? It seems like you’d be arbitrarily nerfing the class just because it’s popular.

That still leaves the question of why the Berserker is so high on the win list now when it wasn’t before. Well, in 0.7, the Enchanter was on top by a good margin, followed by the Crusader who was still noticeably above the Berserker’s general region. The enchantment split hurt the Enchanter’s late-game seriously and the Crusader’s early game moderately, plus Haste was taken out of the Book of War Chants, so obviously those two classes were going to drop. But that should still have left Berserkers roughly equal to a few other classes, so what else changed?

This involves some supposition on my part, but I think the removal of Makhleb as a starting god had a huge effect here. Chaos Knights of Makhleb were a very popular in 0.7. Over 5,000 games were played with them (more than CK of Lugonu and Xom combined). Common wisdom was that if you wanted an easy start but didn’t want to be a spellcaster, you played as a Berserker or a CK of Makhleb, so the population of people who leaned towards divine warriors were mostly split between them. Now CKs of Makhleb are gone, and all those players needed to go somewhere. It’s obvious that they weren’t willing to play Fighters and take Makhleb in the temple (Makhleb was 52% as popular as Trog in 0.7; now he’s only 12% as popular and way below Okawaru), so they must have migrated to other classes. I surmise that most of them started playing Berserkers. Makhleb and Trog are similar to one another (and different from other starting gods) in that they both directly enhance your offensive power using abilities that can be applied very often (plus they both have emergency summons). Priests, Healers, Death Knights, and Abyssal Knights have always been, and still are, considered much weaker starts (in addition to having very different playstyles). So now Berserkers have barely any serious competition. They’re the only non-caster background who doesn’t have a rough early game; none of the other remaining holy warriors are even remotely on par with any elementalist in terms of starting difficulty and mundane warriors are even weaker than that. So tons of people play Berserkers and, since they aren’t one of the harder classes, a fair number of them win. In fact, since Berserkers' win rate was roughly double the CK of Makhleb's in 0.7, most of those ex Chaos Knights are probably suddenly finding themselves doing better than they used to, and are thus more likely to be winning.

I don’t think there’s any real evidence that Berserkers are overpowered, or any stronger than they’ve ever been in the past. They just have a higher percentage of total wins than before because the other classes known for being both often-played and often-won (Enchanters and Crusaders) took (mostly indirect) nerfs, and due to the removal of CKs of Makhleb and the overall weakness of most warior-type characters, they’re rapidly claiming a monopoly on inexperienced but ascension-minded players who don’t like spellcasters. If Makhleb was brought back as a starting god and the other holy warriors and mundane warriors in general had starting advantages that didn’t look so pitiful compared to the amazing stuff even the middling spellcaster backgrounds get, I think the problem would resolve itself without even needing to touch Trog.

Oh, and fun fact: back in 0.5 (i.e. the previous release in which heavy armor was considered viable), the most won classes were Fighter and Berserker tied at 94, then Chaos Knight and Paladin straddling 50 (which of course no longer exist), and then Necromancers at 37, just a bit above a third of the Berserkers (and I’m sure a lot of them were Deep Dwarves in armor, so maybe Fire Elemetalists at 33 would be a better starting point for that comparison). Berserkers doing well isn’t really new! It’s just that the heavy armor nerf put additional focus on spellcasting hybrids, ushering in the heyday of Enchanters and Crusaders, and now that the Enchantment school is broken up and heavy armor is a bit better they’re on their way out and the old order is starting to reassert itself a little bit…except Fighters still can’t pull it off the way they used to and the Berserker class has cannibalized most of the players of the now-defunct (and once quite popular) Chaos Knight and Paladin classes. The big ugly gap between Berserkers and the next closest winner is the result of a lack of attractive alternatives where they once existed, not the result of Berserkers themselves being overpowered. That’s the conclusion I’ve drawn from the statistics, anyway.

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 01:37

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

It's somewhat more complicated than that. Healers get the highest win ratio of all the starting backgrounds not because they're particularly powerful, but because they're unpopular. Unskilled players rarely bother playing them, so their win ratio is inflated by the relatively high percentage of really good players amongst the people willing to play one. A popular background is expected to have a horrendously low win rate, because you have all those beginning players throwing off your stats.

Berserkers are incredibly popular, but the horrendously low win rate they should have as a result of their popularity has not materialized. Their win rate is still actually quite good. Something must definitely be disturbing the statistics for this background, and it is reasonable conjecture to suppose that it's an overly easy background that even beginning players have a good chance to win with.

Then you also have the relatively high-profile cases of people writing bots that can successfully complete a non-trivial part of the game as a berserker, but only as a berserker… You've got to expect some development attention in that sort of situation.

Dungeon Master

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 02:17

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

Berserk also had like twenty different buffs in 0.8. The tournament results support it and it's been fairly well-known for a while anyway, both Trog and berserk itself do need nerfing quite badly.

Swamp Slogger

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 02:22

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

What buffs did Berserkers get in 0.8 except indirectly through heavy armor? Inasmuch as that even matters given the number of kobolds. I wasn't aware of any...I try to keep up with changes as well as I can, but it's kind of hard to find out about things that aren't mentioned directly in one of the wiki's discussion pages.

Lair Larrikin

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 02:37

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

One effect that I know I've abused with Berserk is that its slowness aftereffect got nerfed in 0.8 to reducing one's speed by only 1.5x instead of 2x. This allowed me to set up Swiftness and Flight beforehand and then retreat freely if berserk ran out at an inopportune time in the middle of a fight.

EDIT: MIsread your post. This is with the Berserker Rage spell, but admittably, the point still stands that the Berserk effect itself has gotten some buffs, as all a spellcaster needs to achieve this combo in Trunk is an amulet of rage, swiftness, and flight.
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Dungeon Master

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 10:01

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

Winning stats are not a good measure of whether a combo is powerful or not. You might even get better results reading them backward, because the stronger the combo, the more beginners play them (and die).

Now, I do think Berserkers (and berserk in general) need to be nerf. I suggest 2 things:
When berserked, you are always "mesmerised" by the closest monster. No berserk and run.
Apply the haste nerf to berserk (x1.5 speed instead of x2). This single change nerfs berserk, BiA, hostile berserk monsters and Trog's wrath.
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Abyss Ambulator

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 10:48

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

Berserkers of many species, but especially kobolds and spriggans will be nerfed by the new HP calculations in 0.9.

I think the mesmerisation effect is a great idea and would make berserk much more interesting, but would also lead to more deaths, especially among inexperienced players, as it would require more thought about when to use it.

However, I think doing that and reducing the speed to 1.5x would be going too far, nerfing the effect too much compared to haste. I quite like the idea that berserk should be better than haste for fighting but you have to attack and can't run away.


Edit: I don't know if it's relevant, but I'd just like to point out, from the point of view of someone not far out of noobhood, that my most recent winner was a MiBe, a classic beginner combo, but I did not find it noticeably easier than my previous winner, a DrFE, which is a rarer and allegedly more challenging combo.
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Dungeon Master

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 11:09

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

Jeremiah wrote:I quite like the idea that berserk should be better than haste for fighting but you have to attack and can't run away.

It is and it will still be even with the speed nerf. Berserk gives HP boost and might (+1d10 damage) which are both quite strong.
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Swamp Slogger

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 11:30

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

galehar wrote:Winning stats are not a good measure of whether a combo is powerful or not. You might even get better results reading them backward, because the stronger the combo, the more beginners play them (and die).

Now, I do think Berserkers (and berserk in general) need to be nerf. I suggest 2 things:
When berserked, you are always "mesmerised" by the closest monster. No berserk and run.
Apply the haste nerf to berserk (x1.5 speed instead of x2). This single change nerfs berserk, BiA, hostile berserk monsters and Trog's wrath.


On 1:
A slightly more humane approach might be a big piety hit for a player that doesn't even hit a foe when berserk, and a small piety hit for not killing a foe. This should come with a warning about "Wasting Trogs gifts" or some-such. This leaves the option of running but should discourage it to at least the same extent as burning a consumable to escape.

On 2:
Sure.

IMHO, anyway. :)

Temple Termagant

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 12:01

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

If people are playing a lot of berserkers in 0.8, it could be because they're interested in playing a warrior character, but they want abilities other than "Tab" and "F".

A lot of options for warriors with extra abilities have been lost recently.

Chaos Knight of Mahkleb
Reaver
Necro Death Knight (arguably the more fun version)
Paladin
Arcane Marksman


What remains are a mixed bag, but lacking in appeal
Chaos Knights don't actually have abilities anymore
Stalker remains in name only, and no longer has much of an obvious theme to the casual observer, although it may play decently
Death Knights and Hill Orc Priests are saddled with annoying pet management
Priests don't exactly scream "I'm a warrior" with their name and starting staff, and recite isn't that useful in the early game, although it picks up later
Healers are powerful but boring and it is not obvious on first glance that they're a warrior, what with the name, no weapon skill or unarmed
Enchanters - not obvious from the name that this is a melee character, also you'd have to train in hexes, this was more appealing when the school was enchantments
Abyssal Knights have abilities but no obvious thematic appeal, don't really help you much in the early game and more importantly prevent you from taking a better god later on
Warpers are decent, but it is not an archetype with an obvious appeal and the spell set basically just helps you run away, kill fleeing monsters and train up spellcasting for later

So people are kind of shuttled into
Crusader and Berserker
Both of which are slated for major nerfs in 0.9

I don't really want to play berserkers as I like magic, but I've been at my wits end trying to avoid playing Crusader over and over... I've actually been playing wanderers and re-rolling until I got an interesting one as so many of the older classes are gone or gutted.

Meanwhile it's probably easier to just play an elementalist, necro or wizard then hybridize later anyway.
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Vestibule Violator

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 12:12

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

psyshvl wrote:One effect that I know I've abused with Berserk is that its slowness aftereffect got nerfed in 0.8 to reducing one's speed by only 1.5x instead of 2x. This allowed me to set up Swiftness and Flight beforehand and then retreat freely if berserk ran out at an inopportune time in the middle of a fight.

EDIT: MIsread your post. This is with the Berserker Rage spell, but admittably, the point still stands that the Berserk effect itself has gotten some buffs, as all a spellcaster needs to achieve this combo in Trunk is an amulet of rage, swiftness, and flight.

Slightly off topic, but I'm still in favor of doing away with the berserk spell altogether. With easy access to the spell gone, it makes the decision to go Trog, to spend your amulet slot, or to use a +Rage/*Rage randart more significant.

Back on topic, I have no problem with restricting the abusive practice of 'zerking just to run away. But mesmerization seems a little too strong for me- I can imagine tactical situations where it would get in the way of normal play- say positioning yourself safely from ranged attackers while trying to mele other things, or restricts you from getting to the one creature in a pack you really wanted to kill (can't kill the wizard or priest because you get stuck to all the other orcs). It would also further encourage cautious scaredy 'zerkers (like myself) to 'zerk even less. The speed penalty seems fine though.

Ooh, I like Shade's idea. A big piety hit for wasting divine rage on not fighting sounds excellent.

Edit: Ahh, ninja-ed by text dump!

PorkSol wrote:Abyssal Knights have abilities but no obvious thematic appeal, don't really help you much in the early game and more importantly prevent you from taking a better god later on

...I play them almost exclusively for the thematic appeal. :/
And that guaranteed +2 weapon, not to mention free blink and then banishment can get you though a lot of early to mid game troubles.
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Dungeon Master

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 12:58

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

mageykun wrote:Slightly off topic, but I'm still in favor of doing away with the berserk spell altogether.

It's done already.

Yes, mesmerisation is a bit too much. Piety hit for berserking and not attacking is a great idea (a bit like how Nemelex doesn't like wasting decks).
There used to be a strong duration reduction for doing anything but fighting and butchering when berserked. This has been removed so now you can walk a bit while berserk without it ending abruptly (and use it to flee). We can bring it back, but reduce duration only if you walk away from monsters.
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For this message the author galehar has received thanks:
mageykun

Abyss Ambulator

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 13:31

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

Also keep in mind that any changes to post-berserk effects need to be measured carefully. Otherwise someone will find a way to exploit it with Duvessa, Snorg, and Rupert.
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Vestibule Violator

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 13:57

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

Nice! Guess I'm behind on the change logs.

^It would be pretty simple to just make the monster version of the spell unfair, and keep theirs un-nerfed. It's already done that way with some other spells. Heck, as is, I think monster 'zerk is different. They have very little cooldown time before they can fire off a second one compared to the player.
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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 14:23

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

Stormfox wrote:Also keep in mind that any changes to post-berserk effects need to be measured carefully. Otherwise someone will find a way to exploit it with Duvessa, Snorg, and Rupert.


Prior death was from a double-berserking Rupert.
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Dungeon Master

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 14:34

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

mageykun wrote:Nice! Guess I'm behind on the change logs.

^It would be pretty simple to just make the monster version of the spell unfair, and keep theirs un-nerfed. It's already done that way with some other spells. Heck, as is, I think monster 'zerk is different. They have very little cooldown time before they can fire off a second one compared to the player.

Indeed. Monsters get fatigue for 7 to 13 turns, players for (12 + 2d12) * 2 turns. And a chance to pass out.
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Lair Larrikin

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 19:14

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

I'm just spitballing here and I haven't really thought this out at all, but has significantly raising the level of the Berserk spell been discussed? Perhaps in the range of 7 or 8? I personally think it is *that* good and that it would see use but it would come at a pretty significant cost, the least of which will be a pretty significant XP investment to make it actually castable.

The end result would be that if you want Berserk, you can't just have it because you wear light-ish armor and have a few levels in spell casting. You have to want it like you'd want Fire Storm or Shatter. It'd kinda be the crowning point of your character and power could be adjusted accordingly. It feels like it would be in a better place while still not being literally the button that carries a character from level 4 to level 27.

Abyss Ambulator

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 19:45

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

If the spell was raised to level 7-8 I don't think it would get used, as it would be too dangerous and therefore inferior to haste.

Berserker rage in my experience is useful in the early to mid game, but gets used less and less later in the game because of the risks of being slowed and the availability of alternatives. Even berserkers rarely go berserk beyond the midgame for this reason.

Blades Runner

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 20:29

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

As far as alternatives/nerfs for Trog berserkers - what about if Trog depreciates not having used Berserk for X unit of time (i.e. more rapid piety decay if not using Berserk.)

Alternatively, if you're not berserking enough, you could (after suitable warnings, e.g. "You feel Trog's growing impatience...") have Trog force you into berserk, perhaps upon first sighting a monster.
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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 21:07

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

minmay wrote:On mesmerisation/piety hit when not killing stuff, I strongly dislike it because although it fits the flavour it makes an already overly simple ability even more one-dimensional, in addition to further reducing its late-game utility without affecting the early game much. I would just apply the haste nerf to it for now.

Nerfing the speed boost will already cripple the ability as an escape option. Berserking should be one dimensional. You use it and kill stuff, there's nothing else. Using it to escape is wrong. If you need to escape, call the brothers and run.
As I said earlier, a less radical solution to prevent fleeing with berserk would be to reduce the duration if you walk away from enemies.
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Post Tuesday, 7th June 2011, 15:04

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

As in the c-r-d discussion, I support nerfing Trog and berserk. Reducing duration when walking away (as opposed to whenever not killing/butchering) seems good.

Lair Larrikin

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Post Tuesday, 7th June 2011, 15:43

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

Wow. I hadn't even noticed that berserking had become useful for running away, because previously trying to do that was quickly fatal. (Berserk expired after three steps or so, leaving you slowed and still next to what you needed to run away from.) It had hit my "don't do that" book.

Restoring the duration penalty for berserking and not attacking is appropriate.

The other boost Trog worshippers got was a dramatic improvement in gift quality and appropriateness. It used to be that Trog gave you arbitrary weapons without regard for their usefulness. Now Trog showers axe users with high-end axes. A Trog worshipper who uses an amulet of faith and an axe gets a little absurd and can reasonably expect to get an executioner's axe of chopping, axes with vampiric, flaming, and holy brands, and some usable randart axes for situationally covering resistance holes. From a player standpoint, Trog will provide a complete arsenal, no need to rely on the floor for weapons.
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Post Tuesday, 7th June 2011, 15:47

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

Actually weapon gifts are considered to be nerfed too. He might very well gift only anti-magic branded weapons.
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Blades Runner

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Post Tuesday, 7th June 2011, 15:56

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

that sounds *awfully* boring galehar. i see a bias towards antimagic, but 100%?
there are other ways to deal with this: make piety decay faster, or simply gift less and worse. e.g. my experience with trog is much better than okawaru, because a +7,+0 mace will only get you so far.
and don't grant fixedarts. currently you have a good chance to get stuff like the captain's cutlass if you use short blades, or punk if you use slings. hell, i'm pretty sure there's plenty of people who've been gifted both during a 3-runer.
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Slime Squisher

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Post Tuesday, 7th June 2011, 16:01

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

I'm with absoluteego; fixedart gifting should be limited or done away with. Fixedarts are special, and shouldn't have a high likelihood of showing up in any particular game.

However, I think galehar was simply indicating a direction of change rather than a destination. There are many ways to nerf gifts, and anti-magic bias might be one of them.
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Post Tuesday, 7th June 2011, 16:12

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

galehar wrote:Nerfing the speed boost will already cripple the ability as an escape option. Berserking should be one dimensional. You use it and kill stuff, there's nothing else. Using it to escape is wrong. If you need to escape, call the brothers and run.


What if you need to escape but you have beserkitis :shock: Are these proposed changes just for the ability, or for the already lethal mutation as well?
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Post Tuesday, 7th June 2011, 16:23

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

for what's worth, mesmerisation would take away a few tactical options when you're attacking dispersed enemies while berserked. sometimes you want to travel one square to one- or two-hit that plain orc to keep berserk running for longer instead of repeatedly bashing at that orc knight. reducing the number of squares you can walk without the status expiring would also affect it, but less so.
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Lair Larrikin

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Post Tuesday, 7th June 2011, 16:38

Re: Do Berserkers need to be nerfed?

galehar wrote:Actually weapon gifts are considered to be nerfed too. He might very well gift only anti-magic branded weapons.


The existing behavior is fun, but absurd, and could be tuned simply by increasing Trog's gift timeout.

Trog-worship seems more about killing things in general and mages in particular, than mage-hate specifically.

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