Posts tagged champions

Champion and Warden Comments from Orion


In all the excitement of the NDA being lifted, I did want to point out a few things that Orion posted late in the week on a couple of classes in particular.

First up were some comments for all you Champions out there.

New post 65 skills:

  • Level 66 – Improved Seeking Blade, if you follow this up with Relentless or Remorseless strike within 10 seconds that attack will automatically crit.
  • Level 68 – Improved Feral Strikes double attack that is hard to parry/evade with the first having a chance to remove a corruption, the second guaranteed
  • Level 70 – Improved Dire Need trade in half your power for three times that in morale on a ten minute CD
  • Level 72 – Improved Hedge adds Crit Defence to current Hedge
  • Level 74 – Enhanced Battle Acuity increases the damage bonus

If you’ve been wondering why they made the drastic Champion changes, Orion tries to explain it on the forums.

The other two posts came regarding the Warden.  Orion clears up some of the thoughts behind the changed to Never Surrender which while many will still argue it has its issues, the debuff which prevents our masteries has been reduced to 120 seconds.  However, even bigger was the mention of reduced power costs for Wardens which I did check into and it is both on our builders and the gambits, resulting in between 10 and 25 percent power reductions across the board.

I’m sure we’ll see more now that the NDA is lifted, but I usually prefer hearing things from the Devs.


Isengard Armor Set Details


I posted the images of the sets earlier today, but here’s the breakdown on the actual sets themselves.

A few things to point out:

  • These will most likely change with our feedback (remember the tweaks to the OD sets)
    • Some are clearly strange like the Minstrel set without Finesse
  • These are VERY heavy on your primary stat and I envision filling out the others with Jewelry and other items
  • Why can they NEVER provide cool set bonuses for Wardens??


Helm – +122 Agility, +61 Vitality, +996 Finesse

Shoulders – +122 Agility, +61 Fate, +142 Power

Chest – +122 Agility, +61 Vitality, +166 Critical Rating

Legs – +122 Agility, +61 Fate, +55.2 ICPR

Gloves – +122 Agility, +61 Vitality, +996 Finesse

Boots – +122 Agility, +61 Fate, +166 Melee Offense

2 set bonus – +52.8 ICPR

3 set bonus – -85% Well-placed Strike Induction

4 set bonus – +304 Melee/Ranged Offence Rating

5 set bonus – -50% Tricks Power cost


Helm – +122 Might, +61 Agility, +996 Finesse

Shoulders – +122 Might, +61 Vitality, +142 Power

Chest – +122 Might, +61 Agility, +166 Critical Rating

Legs – +122 Might, +61 Vitality, +55.2 ICPR

Gloves – +122 Might, +61 Agility, +996 Finesse

Boots – +122 Might, +61 Vitality, +166 Melee Offense

2 set bonus – +52.8 ICPR

3 set bonus – Each target healed by Rallying Cry drops Valient Strike CD by 5 seconds

4 set bonus – +304 Melee/Ranged Offence Rating

5 set bonus – +5% damage returned from Revealing Mark


Helm – +122 Might, +61 Agility, +166 Critical Rating

Shoulders – +122 Might, +61 Vitality, 166 Melee Offense

Chest – +122 Might, +61 Agility, +996 Finesse

Legs – +122 Might, +61 Vitality, +166 Melee Offense

Gloves – +122 Might, +61 Agility, +996 Finesse

Boots – +122 Might, +61 Vitality, +166 Melee Offense

2 set bonus – +52.8 ICPR

3 set bonus – –5% power cost for Blade Skills

4 set bonus – +304 Melee/Ranged Offence Rating

5 set bonus – Exalted Combatant CD reduced by 30 seconds


Helm – +122 Vitality, +61 Might, +166 Parry Rating

Shoulders – +122 Vitality, +284 Power, +672 Physical Mitigation

Chest – +122 Vitality, +61 Might, +996 Finesse

Legs – +122 Vitality, +61 Might, +166 Block

Gloves – +122 Vitality, +332 Incoming Healing, +166 Parry, +996 Finesse

Boots – +122 Vitality, +55.2 ICPR, +166 Block, +672 Physical Mitigation

2 set bonus – +52.8 ICPR

3 set bonus – +2% Evade

4 set bonus – +304 Melee/Ranged Offence Rating

5 set bonus – +200% Heal and +100% Max from Warrior’s Heart/Fortitude


Helm – +122 Agility, +61 Vitality, +996 Finesse

Shoulders – +122 Agility, +61 Fate, +166 Ranged Offence

Chest – +122 Agility, +61 Vitality, +996 Finesse

Legs – +122 Agility, +61 Fate, +55.2 ICPR

Gloves – +122 Agility, +61 Vitality, +166 Crit Rating

Boots – +122 Agility, +61 Fate, +142 Power

2 set bonus – +52.8 ICPR

3 set bonus – +10% Heart-Seeker Damage

4 set bonus – +304 Melee/Ranged Offence Rating

5 set bonus – Intent Concentration Recovers all Hunter’s Art Skills


Helm – +122 Will, +61 Fate, +996 Finesse

Shoulders – +122 Will, +61 Vitality, +166 Tactical Offence

Chest – +122 Will, +61 Fate, +996 Finesse

Legs – +122 Will, +61 Vitality, +166 Tactical Offense

Gloves – +122 Will, +61 Fate, +166 Crit Rating

Boots – +122 Will, +61 Fate, +166 Tactical Offence

2 set bonus – +52.8 ICPR

3 set bonus – +30 seconds Ancient Craft Duration

4 set bonus – +304 Tactical & Outgoing Healing Rating

5 set bonus – +5% Incoming Crit Chance Sign of Power: See All Ends


Helm – +122 Will, +61 Fate, +166 Tactical & Outgoing Healing Rating

Shoulders – +122 Will, +61 Vitality, +142 Power

Chest – +122 Will, +61 Fate, +166 Crit Rating

Legs – +122 Will, +61 Vitality, +55.2 ICPR

Gloves – +122 Will, 162 Morale, +166 Crit/Tactical/Outgoing Healing Rating

Boots – +122 Will, +61 Vitality, +55.2 ICPR

2 set bonus – +52.8 ICPR

3 set bonus – -10% Power for Healing skills

4 set bonus – +304 Tactical & Outgoing Healing Rating

5 set bonus – +5 second Anthem Duration


Helm – +122 Will, +61 Vitality, +996 Finesse

Shoulders – +122 Will, +61 Fate, +166 Tactical Offence

Chest – +122 Will, +166 Crit/Tactical/Outgoing Healing Rating, +996 Finesse

Legs – +122 Will, +61 Fate, +55.2 ICPR

Gloves – +122 Will, +61 Vitality, +166 Crit Rating

Boots – +122 Will, +142 Power, +55.2 ICPR, +166 Tactical/Outgoing Healing

2 set bonus – +52.8 ICPR

3 set bonus – -15% Writs Power Cost

4 set bonus – +304 Tactical & Outgoing Healing Rating

5 set bonus – Fiery Ridicule Reduces Essay of Fire CD by 3 seconds


Helm – +122 Vitality, +664 Incoming Healing, +996 Finesse

Shoulders – +122 Vitality, +61 Might, +166 Block

Chest – +122 Vitality, +61 Might, +166 Parry

Legs – +122 Vitality, +55.2 ICPR, +284 Power

Gloves – +122 Vitality, +332 Incoming Healing, +166 Parry, +996 Finesse

Boots – +122 Vitality, +61 Might, +55.2 ICPR

2 set bonus – +52.8 ICPR

3 set bonus – +5 second stun immunity from Shield Tactics

4 set bonus – +304 Melee/Ranged Offence Rating

5 set bonus – Never Surrender CD reduced by 5 minutes


Rise of Isengard Champion Dev Diary


It seems like the next batch of diaries Turbine releases will all be related to the class changes.  Champions were one of the most discussed and tweaked in the earlier posts and this Diary certainly reflects that as Orion takes 5 pages to walk through the changes.  I’m going to walk through the changes, and put my comments at the end for those who make it that far ;)  Oh, and don’t forget these are all still in beta and potentially likely to change.

Page one really walks through the overall idea behind the changes in allowing them to basically charge in fighting first and thinking later.

  • Fervour costs for Two-handed weapons will now be the same as when dual-wielding
  • With regards to tanking, they are making it shieldless but want it to be different from the Guard (absorption tank) and Warden (endurance tank)
  • Will need to roll in Glory stance to tank effectively
  • There will be a damage sacrifice for the enhanced durability
  • Interesting mechanic in that the tanking champion will need to take damage as opposed to dodging or mitigating it.  Sounds like a fun game for all you Minstrels out there!

Page 2 focuses on the changes to the Glory stance and associated Martial trait lines as the stance is quite closely tied to the traits.

  • Overall set up to be the tanking line including reducing cool-downs for Adamant/Invincible, Hedge, and Bracing Attack
  • While in Glory stance, Ebbing Ire becomes Rising Ire
  • Sudden Defence becomes a damage bubble increasing with each Fervour pip and lasts for 15 seconds
  • Hedge now increases the Champion’s Armour value and further increased while in Glory stance as well avoiding/removing the disarm effect.
  • Traits:
    • Call of the Wild allows Wild Attack to generate more threat and reduces the CD of Sudden Defense by 5 seconds
    • At the Ready makes damage dealing skills reduce the CD of both the Ire skills by 2 seconds
    • Reprisal, previously called Patience, increases the frequency of the retaliation effect from Exchange of Blows.  In addition, while in Glory stance this will generate more threat AND a fervour pip each time you’re hit.
    • Braced against Defeat not only does Bracing Attack get the bonus to healing but a 15% bonus to incoming healing for 10 seconds.
    • Time of Need buffs the Dire Need skill by reducing the CD by 5 minutes and adding 5 Fervour pips.
    • Vigour of Champions changes Second WInd to a PoT lasting for 10 seconds
    • Tight Grip increases the Hedge duration by 5 seconds and reduces the CD by 50%
    • Agressive Exchange replaces the Heavy Shield trait and modifies Blade-wall to increase threat.
  • The set trait bonuses are tweaked a bit too:
    • 2 set provides increased crit defence while in glory as well as increasing the amount of threat of Champion’s Challenge
    • 3 set reduces fervour requirements for Bracing Attack and further increases crit defence while in Glory Stance
    • 4 set is a Morale buff and another crit defence boost while in Glory

Page 3 walks through the changes to Ardour and the Deadly Storm trait line:

  • This line is structured to be the power conserving AoE damage line, as well as boosting survivability.
  • In general, while in Ardour:
    • reduced CD for Cleave
    • Blade-wall generates pips on hits
    • AoE power cost reduction
    • AoE threat is reduced
  • Skill Changes
    • Flurry is no longer tied to a defeat response but has a longer duration and shorter CD.
    • Battle Acuity replaces Fighting Dirty doesn’t need a defeat response (I thought this was tied to health) with a 10 second duration and 2 fervour pip generation on a 30 second cooldown
    • Great Cleave has its CD reduced with Improved Great Cleave being the renamed versio of Death Storm.  Same effect, but the Improved version also applies the Battle Acuity buff with a CD of 18 seconds.
  • Traits
    • Eye of the Storm reduces fervour requirments of Blade-storm, and both Cleaves by 1
    • Battle Acumen replaces Dirt Cheap and changes the fervour requirement for Battle Acuity to 1
    • Swift to Anger come from the berserker line changing Swift Strike into Swift Blade which provides fervour pips on critical hits.  Also, while in Ardour Red Haze will provide an additional fervour pip per mob defeated.
  • Trait Set bonueses
    • 2 set bonus increases hit chance for AoE skills
    • 3 set reduces chances of AoE skills being blocked or parried
    • 4 set bonus decreases power cost and threat while increasing damage of blade skills.

Page 4 talks about the changes to Fervour stance with the big change being the removal of the healing penalty.  However, the other big change is many skills which generated threat have had the threat component removed UNLESS the Champ is in Glory stance.  So, Fervour will be a high DPS line with limited agro abilities – other then just raw DPS.

  • Skill changes
    • Merciful strike now consumes all available pips doing more damage per pip.  After 1 second, 3 pips will be restored making it useful for trying to finish mobs off since it has a high power cost.
    • Blood rage now only costs 10% of morale
    • Red Haze is no longer combat permanent but provides a fervour pip every 15 seconds for 45 seconds on a 5 second CD.
  • Traits
    • Controlled Fury comes over from the Martial Champion line and increased the duration of Controlled burn by 30 seconds
    • Flurry of blows increases the duration of flurry while not in fervour stance.  While in the stance, flurry is permanently active.
    • Althetic sounds interesting in that the CD is lowered by 120 seconds and Wild Attack will stun for 10 seconds after using Sprint.  So, this becomes a useful getaway skill – or another nasty attack out in the Ettenmoors.
  • Trait-set
    • 2 set bonus adds 40% crit multiplier to additional strikes from Brutal and Savage strikes
    • 3 set increases the crit rating and multiplier for Wild Attack
    • 4 set increases fervour generation  as well as the damage for Merciful Strike while dropping its CD by 10 seconds.
    • The capstone is quite different with Continuous Blood Rage now costing 10% of morale to enable without the incoming healing penalty.  However, there will be a DoT applied to the Champion that scales up with the bonus damage.  Note, this is NOT disabled by low health, so you can VERY easy kill yourself with this.

Page 5 provides some of the overall changes not tied to a specific line:

  • Second Wind is now a PoT resoring power every 2 seconds for 10 seconds on a 10 second CD – so if you’re a power hog, you can have this going non-stop
  • Heroics has its CD reduced to 5 minutes and the traited version behaves depending on the stance:
    • Glory – AoE taunt with what seems like a “disarm” like ability on the mobs
    • Fervour – increase crit chance and that “disarm” ability
    • Ardour – AoE combat and run speed de-buff and that “disarm” ability
  • Seeking Blades is the new Blocking Blades that doesn’t need a defeat response but increases the crit chance of Relentless and Remorseless Strike.  10 second duration on a 2 minute CD.
  • Raging Blades is also now stance dependant:
    • Ardour – increased crit chance
    • Fervour – increased crit magnitude
    • Glory – increased threat
  • Ferocious Strikes now does increasing damage with each hit
  • Fight On now works independent of mobs being around and has the CD reduced to 5 minutes.
  • Controlled Burn no longer trumps your stance but increases damage, attack speed, bonus pip every 5 seconds and on defeat.  However, it has a 45 second duration on a 5 minute cool-down.

Finally, based on the above changes, legendary item legacies needed to be tweaked or totally changed.

Phew, that was a lot to digest and for the most part, like the other changes, I think these are positive for the class and it trims out the crappy parts of the class.  I really like the concepts behind Ardour and Glory, however I’m really struggling to see why any Champion wouldn’t run in Fervour.  Maybe you pop into Ardour for AoE crazy fights or for mowing down trash, but that seems to be the exception.  Glory does seem to have some interesting ideas in it for the new way to tank, it sounds horribly painful on Minstrels unless the Champion stacks Vitality and Morale like crazy.  Glory just doesn’t sound worth it since we haven’t heard or seen anything on how threat will change going forward.  This was a HUGE problem when Moria launched as you could EASILY out DPS the threat any tank could generate and I’m expecting Fervour tanks to be much more effective then Glory tanks because of that.

Ok, now that I taken off my tin-foil hat, the main issue with these changes will be how they balance threat and damage output.  If that is done well such that a tank (equally geared) can work as hard as a champ and still maintain agro, I think these will be 3 nice lines for Champions to trait down.  But, if they don’t get that balance right, I guess I’m glad I’m working on my Champion now ;)


The Potent Warden


I realize this is a little late, but wanted to get my thoughts on these changes out there.

After the previous post on the planned changes for the Wardens, quite a bit of feedback prompted Orion to further tweak the concept of Potency.  He described it pretty well in his blog post, but here’s my take on it.

Some of the pieces aren’t changing, you’ll still need to use either Deft Strike, Defensive Strike, or Goad to trigger the potency state and the trait bonuses are the same such that if you go deep enough (4 traits) in a line you’ll have 100% chance to trigger potency.  But that’s where the similarities end.

Once potency is active, the next gambit you execute will be stored in a skill temporarily called Battle Memory.  You can then use that stored gambit later on without using power, but instead sacrificing 5% morale.

I guess the idea is to store up a lengthy gambit like Conviction or Exultation of Battle such that you can use it again instantly when you need it.  I do like the concept but I’ll have to wait and see how it works in practice.  I like the speed and power savings, but the 5% morale hit could get touchy a times for a class that is already considered squishy.

I like the concept behind this system, but I wish they would’ve gone a little further with the tweaks to the class.  Granted, the changes to the masteries is a potential game changer, especially when you consider that they’re also changing a few of our crappy traits as well. Maybe this is just a compliment for the original design of the class such that it doesn’t need much tweaking.  But when you compare the changes for the Warden to the other only other class that’s been released and didn’t get a previous update (Champion) we’re pretty much staying the same.  When you look at all of the revamps that have happened, Turbine has really tried to make all three trait lines viable and fulfill a real purpose in the game.  Many classes (Captains come to mind) have seen huge overhauls to make trait lines viable and I really wish they would tweak the yellow line even somewhat just to make it viable.  It really wouldn’t take much but something that provides comparable utility for the class in a tanking role.  I would love to see some creative threat management tool for Wardens that would allow them to better handle many of the recent boss fights which require agro swapping.  It is possible with Wardens but is incredibly challenging for good groups and virtually a guaranteed fail for PUGs.

One of the ideal things I could see them changing is the Fist Capstone to replace the fear with something threat related.  I think it would be cool to have a threat up version and a threat down version, maybe based on the preceding gambit or depending on what stance you’re in.  Or leave the fear if you’re in recklessness (I’m thinking for the moors, or as a form of CC), make it a threat increase if you’re in determination (I’m labeling this the tank stance for now), and have it be a threat decrease if in conservation.  Since you can quickly and easily switch stances, this would be a nice way to not only make the Fist line viable as a tanking line but help address a key problem the class has without encroaching on the realm of the other tank classes.

We shall see how these all come together but I do like the overall direction, I would just like a little more meat.


Lots of LOTRO Developer Activity


It has been quite hard of late to keep track of the various developer postings as they’ve been very active.  I’m sure we don’t always agree with 100% of what they’re saying, but I really appreciate the information this early in the game as we at least have a chance to not only voice our opinions but the possibility that those opinions might be acted upon.  I’m going to summarize a couple recent posts here as well as hint an upcoming post I’m working on for later today.

One of the shortest yet most exciting posts (at least for me) was Kelsen’s post on the upcoming changes to PvMP for freeps.  There’s a huge thread there, but the quick information is that stats will increase with rank, and the stats being things like vitality, will, might, etc.  As it stands this applies to both PvMP and PvE but I could see a potential for this to be a PvMP buff only.  For me this is quite a game changer as there are now real rewards for people who want to PvMP and another way to grow your character.  All along one of my biggest issues with freep side PvMP is the lack of rewards, and this is a great first step to correcting that.  This is a small change but one that I think could really boost activity out in the moors once it is implemented.  There’s also a final note in his post that he realized the PvE grinding is not desirable so possibly my other gripe (grinding PvE for PvP armor sets) will be addressed as well.

Orion then posted a wrap up of all the proposed Champion changes, and as I’m a bit out of it on my champion and how these changes impact them, I will just post the link and let you guys digest on your own.

The final post I wanted to mention was the Orion’s proposed upcoming changes for the Burglars and Wardens.  My knowledge of Burglars is pretty limited, but I will have a full post on the upcoming Warden ideas.

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