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Update 32 Combat Preview

ZOS_Gilliam
ZOS_Gilliam
Combat Team
Greetings! It’s about that time again where we have another Update coming soon, even though Update 31 just released on consoles last week. With a new PTS update lurking around the corner, the combat team wanted to give you all some deep dives into the spicier stuff coming with this upcoming patch.

In the last Update, we tried to keep things simpler with the number of changes to help combat the change fatigue many have reported, but progress cannot sleep for long as we march ever forward to improving the game. Our focus in Update 32 is two-fold: improving proc set balance and continuing the hybridization improvements from previous updates. These areas are the topics we’ve seen a significant amount of discussion on in the realms of combat balance, so we’re following up to try and get better reigns on both.

In Update 30 we introduced item proc set scaling, which aimed to lower the ease of access of “free” damage and healing from them by ensuring you needed a base line of stats to make the set really stand out. While this did help significantly reduce the overbearing success of tanky builds utilizing damage-oriented sets, it also increased the amount of damage that glass cannon and more offensive-oriented builds did by a reasonable margin. This, while an intentional result, still has the issue of the power available when stacking multiples of these sets, and how certain combinations are leading to very binary and unengaging gameplay. To target that issue, we’re introducing a new rule set for offensive item sets that have low counterplay. Now when wearing a set that deals a “burst of damage” within a 4 second window, it will prevent any other use of these types of sets for 1 second. This is to deny the ability to layer multiple effects into single attacks, significantly reducing burst potential. This rule set will be explained in further detail in the PTS patch notes, and keep in mind we are open to adjusting this along the way.

In relation to this, we’re also aiming our sights on reigning in some of the power creep that’s been coming into the game as of late, particularly affecting PvE. The dominance of Critical hits in ESO is by no means new, and despite the reduction to the overall sourcing of it, we’re still seeing it win out by a significant margin when compared to other stats. Rather than outright nerfing Critical Chance or Potency (Damage and Healing) and hurting builds that aren’t really doing more than we expect, we’ve decided to move forward with a hard cap to Critical Damage and Healing. It is our hope that this keeps Critical Chance and Potency as viable and powerful stats but also helps open up other stat and build paths. Much like the Penetration stats, these will be important to prioritize up until a point, and from there builds will want to seek out other sources of power.

To tie things up in the proc set and Critical topics for this Update, we’re also making a fairly significant adjustment that we hope the previously mentioned changes will prevent from becoming too out of hand: Proc sets that scale with your Weapon or Spell Damage, Magicka, or Stamina will now once again be able to Critically strike in Update 32. By doing this, in addition to reducing the burst potential when stacking these sets and limiting the amount they can Critically strike for, we hope to give these sets some much needed love in PvE situations where they’ve struggled to maintain viability after the removal of their ability to critically strike in ye years of olde. There will be additional balance adjustments to these values to try and prevent them from becoming the best in slot, and we’ll have rules on which ones can and cannot crit, so keep your eyes peeled for the list and details in the PTS patch notes!

Aside from these changes and the usual bug fixing and less flashy/global adjustments (like some long overdue Dragonknight love), we have one more “big” change coming this Update. As mentioned before, hybridization improvements have been a push in many Updates ever since Champion Point 2.0 was released in Update 29, and it’s something we’re continuing with as we see a lot of the good it does. ESO has always tried to hold itself to the mantra of “play the way you want” but a lot of our stats and ability calculations actively push against this concept in ways we find less than ideal. In Update 32, we’re taking the next big approach to change the concept of what a hybrid is by making all item sets grant “hybrid” stats. This means sets that grant Weapon Damage will now grant Weapon and Spell Damage, Spell Penetration will be Physical and Spell Penetration, and Spell Critical will be Weapon and Spell Critical. With this change, we hope to open up builds to new abilities and ideas, make the game more digestible and understandable to newer players, and empower you with choices when creating your dream build.

Our focus with this upcoming PTS update will be heavily concentrated on ensuring that the item set proc adjustments with critting and prevention release in a way that improves the gameplay balance, and we’ll be keeping a close eye on those topics. We look forward to seeing the myriad of discussions that pop up, as we know there will be much to theory craft and mull over. Thanks for reading and see you in Tamriel!
ESO Combat Designer
Staff Post
  • JinxxND
    JinxxND
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    Bruh
    PC NA -
    'Jinxx - Nightblade
    'Jinxx X Necromancer
  • code65536
    code65536
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    In relation to this, we’re also aiming our sights on reigning in some of the power creep that’s been coming into the game as of late, particularly affecting PvE.

    Hopefully, you will also reign in some of the enemy power creep that’s been coming into the game as of late, particularly affecting the incoming damage levels and DPS checks in endgame PvE.
    Edited by code65536 on September 17, 2021 8:39PM
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  • jaws343
    jaws343
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    Those are some wild changes. A good wild.
  • Marto
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    So we're basically looking at
    • Burst damage proc sets now share a global cooldown of 1 second, preventing multiple damaging effects from being dealt all at once.
    • Introduction of a critical damage/critical healing cap. Similarly to penetration, players will be encouraged to improve their crit damage only to a certain point, and then focus on other aspects.
    • Proc sets can crit once again.
    • All item sets will now provide hybrid stats.

    That last one is... wild, to say the least. It's not really that bad of an idea, imo. But it really boils down the distinction of magicka/stamina even more.

    Item sets are hybrid, ultimate abilities are hybrid, CP bonuses are hybrid, enemy debufs are hybrid, light and heavy attack damage is hybrid...

    The only things that are not hybridized are regular active abilities, food items, potions, poisons and player buffs.
    I think that's too few things that depend on your magicka/stamina.
    "According to the calculations of the sages of the Cult of the Ancestor Moth, the batam guar is the cutest creature in all Tamriel"
  • CyberOnEso
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    Looking really good overall. Looking forward to that DK love!

    Obviously, my mind is looking ahead to running Relequen on magicka.
    If sets are becoming hybrid it would be nice for some stamina survivability PvE buffs (I know they are already parsing the highest). As generally, they are getting more of their dmg potential from better sets overall.
    @CyberOnEso PC | EU - Jack of all Trades - Armory Style Manager Planesbreaker | Godslayer | Dawnbringer | Immortal Redeemer | Tick Tock Tormentor | Gryphon Heart
  • ESO_Nightingale
    ESO_Nightingale
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    When it comes to creating a dream frost build, our options are still fundamentally limited in viability. A spammable and 2 AoE DoTs being the only viable skills is a bit lacking even unstable wall of frost is easily outshined by it's fire varient. frost reach and frostbite have been great steps forward. But the playstyle is still lacking in comparison to fire. Did you guys have any more plans for helping to close the gap between non fire destruction staves? Specifically by way of buffing frost spells and reworking the damage type of Deep Fissure to frost to better utilise class passives and item sets? additionally, a Crit Damage cap directly hurts minor brittle which is the only reason we are even partially viable right now. Did you just kill us off?
    Edited by ESO_Nightingale on September 18, 2021 10:11AM
    PvE Frost Warden Main and teacher for ESO-U. Frost Warden PvE Build Article: https://eso-u.com/articles/nightingales_warden_dps_guide__frost_knight. Come Join the ESO Frost Discord to discuss everything frost!: https://discord.gg/5PT3rQX
  • gariondavey
    gariondavey
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    Interesting. Thanks for the update!
    PC NA @gariondavey, BG, IC & Cyrodiil Focused Since October 2017 Stamplar (main), Magplar, Magsorc, Stamsorc, StamDK, MagDK, Stamblade, Magblade, Magden, Stamden
  • Skullstachio
    Skullstachio
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    Very interesting but I have my bucket of salt on standby. Also, I wonder as to how ZOS are going to be able to address “Overpenetration?” as having too much penetration is basically a major loss to DPS and from the looks of this, I’d say Critical Damage is going to be in the same boat.
    "When the human race learns to read the language of symbolism, a great veil will fall from the eyes of men." ~Manly P. Hall
  • jaws343
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    CyberOnEso wrote: »
    Looking really good overall. Looking forward to that DK love!

    Obviously, my mind is looking ahead to running Relequen on magicka.
    If sets are becoming hybrid it would be nice for some stamina survivability PvE buffs (I know they are already parsing the highest). As generally, they are getting more of their dmg potential from better sets overall.

    My mind immediately went to Spriggans/Spinners combo for a ton of pen and decent resource pools for PVP.
  • Azorean
    Azorean
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    Still won't proc dmg sets still be useless in PvE? The spell/weapon dmg that requires is stupidly high.
    ATM using proc monster sets is less desirable vs crit or full stats MS :|

    I was waiting for that hard cap on crit :P Is the only reasonable option if you guys want to moves from crit sets.
    Otherwise we would simply change to the next crit set, because crits = free dmg
  • LonePirate
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    Hmmm….still nothing to address the Light Armor vs. Heavy Armor viability issue in PVP. Maybe Update 33 will tackle this in 5-6 months.
  • WhyEvenTry
    WhyEvenTry
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    Isn’t it a little late for an April fool joke?
  • Izanagi.Xiiib16_ESO
    Izanagi.Xiiib16_ESO
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    @ZOS_Gilliam
    Any focus on

    1) 49000 days debuff/buff bug
    2) Position Desync after knockback/up in PVP
    3) Slow walking bug in pvp
    4) will stam and magicka be linked in the same way as weapon and spell dmg?
    5) 1 second cooldown on proc condition or on dmg occurring? for example Will dying to Hrothgar / Dark Convergence still proc VD?
    6) Any rebalancing of the proc sets introduced from last patch based on the bugs and lack of counterplay they offer?
    Edited by Izanagi.Xiiib16_ESO on September 17, 2021 3:06PM
    @Solar_Breeze
    NA ~ Izanerys: Dracarys (Videos | Dracast Podcast)
    EU ~ Izanagi: Roleplay Circle (AOE Rats/ Zerg Squad / Banana Squad)
  • Parasaurolophus
    Parasaurolophus
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    In relation to this, we’re also aiming our sights on reigning in some of the power creep that’s been coming into the game as of late, particularly affecting PvE. The dominance of Critical hits in ESO is by no means new, and despite the reduction to the overall sourcing of it, we’re still seeing it win out by a significant margin when compared to other stats. Rather than outright nerfing Critical Chance or Potency (Damage and Healing) and hurting builds that aren’t really doing more than we expect, we’ve decided to move forward with a hard cap to Critical Damage and Healing. It is our hope that this keeps Critical Chance and Potency as viable and powerful stats but also helps open up other stat and build paths. Much like the Penetration stats, these will be important to prioritize up until a point, and from there builds will want to seek out other sources of power.

    Sound like "We just nerf PVE"
    PC/EU
  • Tommy_The_Gun
    Tommy_The_Gun
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    Our focus in Update 32 is two-fold: improving proc set balance and continuing the hybridization improvements from previous updates.
    Proc sets that scale with your Weapon or Spell Damage, Magicka, or Stamina will now once again be able to Critically strike in Update 32.

    Dude. I mean... is it just me or you are... contradicting yourself ? I mean this is how I read this... "We are gonna balance porc sets out by allowing them to crit" ?! And no word about DC & Hrothgar ? Like... are you guys at ZOS even serious ?

    This is how U32 looks to me (so far), based on this "teaser" info: EDIT: Sorry for the negative feedback, I am just waiting for something positive to happen lol :D
    Edited by Tommy_The_Gun on September 17, 2021 3:08PM
  • Marto
    Marto
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    I still can't believe what I'm reading.

    This is going to be a really fundamental change to ESO

    A lot of item sets work on the premise that they are the opposite stat of one another. Are sets like Hunding's Rage and Law of Julianos going to be merged into the same set?
    RMwOMpk.png

    What about sets that are only remotely balanced because they only exist for stamina builds, because magicka builds having access to them would be overpowered (or vice versa)
    u6cowkN.png

    If so many things are hybridized, does that mean this is what your stat screen will look like in the near future?
    oiN74yv.png

    None of these ideas are objectively bad or anything. I might not even be opposed to them. But it is a huge change, with the potential to be the biggest update to ESO since Update 6.
    "According to the calculations of the sages of the Cult of the Ancestor Moth, the batam guar is the cutest creature in all Tamriel"
  • RamiroCruzo
    RamiroCruzo
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    like some long overdue Dragonknight love

    Finally :3
    Having a light side... And a Dark side... Is what makes life interesting...
    High as Nord and Proud as Dark Elf
    Blood for the Pact
  • code65536
    code65536
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    Marto wrote: »
    I still can't believe what I'm reading.

    This is going to be a really fundamental change to ESO

    A lot of item sets work on the premise that they are the opposite stat of one another. Are sets like Hunding's Rage and Law of Julianos going to be merged into the same set?
    RMwOMpk.png

    What about sets that are only remotely balanced because they only exist for stamina builds, because magicka builds having access to them would be overpowered (or vice versa)
    u6cowkN.png

    If so many things are hybridized, does that mean this is what your stat screen will look like in the near future?
    oiN74yv.png

    None of these ideas are objectively bad or anything. I might not even be opposed to them. But it is a huge change, with the potential to be the biggest update to ESO since Update 6.

    Juli and Hunding will still differ in the Mag/Stam bonuses.

    Moon Hunter will still be a light armor set.
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  • Expert
    Expert
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    Bruh.....
  • regime211
    regime211
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    When it comes to creating a dream frost build, our options are still fundamentally limited in viability. A spammable and 2 AoE DoTs being the only viable skills is a bit lacking. frost reach and frostbite have been great steps forward. But the playstyle is still lacking in comparison to fire. Did you guys have any more plans for helping to close the gap between non fire destruction staves? Specifically by way of buffing frost spells and reworking the damage type of Deep Fissure to frost to better utilise class passives and item sets?

    I have said they need to change one of the morphs of Frost gate and make that a ice spammable. But they keep thinking "Frost Clench" is it lol
  • marius_buys
    marius_buys
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    Bye bye Dark Convergence spamming ball groups :)
  • HeroOfNone
    HeroOfNone
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    Will there be an indicator you're hitting a critical limit? Like making the number red and with a hover over on our character & inventory stats page?


    Also with stat hybridization, will this be for all pre 5 set bonus or will it include proc bonuses from say burning spellweave or briarheart's 5 piece bonus?
    Herfi Driderkitty of the Aldmeri Dominion
    Find me on : Twitch | Youtube | Twitter | Reddit
  • FrankonPC
    FrankonPC
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    The most problematic sets in pvp right now are the new proc sets, doing upwards of 19k dmg on each of them...and you're going to allow them to crit without mentioning an adjustment?

    Confused unga bunga noises.
  • FrankonPC
    FrankonPC
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    Bye bye Dark Convergence spamming ball groups :)

    Making Dark Convergence hit even harder will not get rid of people using Dark Convergence.
  • Tommy_The_Gun
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    Bye bye Dark Convergence spamming ball groups :)
    DC & Hrothgar will freaking deal critical damage next patch... I dont see how that is weaker. You will be literally able to pair Mechanical Acuity with DC & monster proc set & vaporise people... :#
  • ESO_Nightingale
    ESO_Nightingale
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    regime211 wrote: »
    When it comes to creating a dream frost build, our options are still fundamentally limited in viability. A spammable and 2 AoE DoTs being the only viable skills is a bit lacking. frost reach and frostbite have been great steps forward. But the playstyle is still lacking in comparison to fire. Did you guys have any more plans for helping to close the gap between non fire destruction staves? Specifically by way of buffing frost spells and reworking the damage type of Deep Fissure to frost to better utilise class passives and item sets?

    I have said they need to change one of the morphs of Frost gate and make that a ice spammable. But they keep thinking "Frost Clench" is it lol

    Frost reach is very good to be honest. But we still lack rotational frost skills on magicka warden. Deep Fissure is by far the best candidate without reworking an entire skill because we cast it every 3 seconds. It helps proc chilled in AoE a little bit more, interacts passively better with our class and existing sets than current magic damage shalks do. It's just better. Frozen Retreat becoming something like a frost version of Scalding Rune would be a little boring but it'd certainly be used instead of being useless like at current. Arctic Blast is a huge problem in of itself where adjusting it also means adjustments to the green balance tree etc.
    Edited by ESO_Nightingale on September 17, 2021 3:31PM
    PvE Frost Warden Main and teacher for ESO-U. Frost Warden PvE Build Article: https://eso-u.com/articles/nightingales_warden_dps_guide__frost_knight. Come Join the ESO Frost Discord to discuss everything frost!: https://discord.gg/5PT3rQX
  • Rex-Umbra
    Rex-Umbra
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    Why is recovery and max stats not hybrid also heavy attacks should be hybrid.
    Xbox GT: Rex Umbrah
    GM of IMPERIUM since 2015.
  • Tommy_The_Gun
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    Does that mean that proc sets will also critically heal ?
  • Alendrin
    Alendrin
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    Proc sets being able to crit in PVP really scares me, but have to test before freaking out.

    Otherwise like the changes.

    But bro.....performance? You been in the game recently? In cyrodil?
  • Elsonso
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    "All item sets will now provide hybrid stats."

    Not a fan of this idea. Unless I am misreading the intent, this just seems to dilute the stats as we slowly sneak up on the idea of there just being a "combat stat" and everything draws from that.
    PC NA/EU: @Elsonso
    XBox EU/NA: @ElsonsoJannus
    X/Twitter: ElsonsoJannus
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