I've played on and off since beta mainly on dk or nb, but since Elsweyr released I've been a magcro main. I love the necromancer fantasy, and I play all aspects of the game vet dungeons, arenas, trials, cyro, and housing. For magcro pve and pvp Stalking Blastbones is the
iconic skill and to replace it with a buff doesn't just dilute the class identity, but also removes the best offensive skill magcro has. Don't get me wrong I do like the more DoT focused direction and think the Sacrificial Bones ability has great potential, I just believe there is a better way to reach this goal that the devs and community can both be happy with. I love that my class is getting attention especially since it falls in that ever so rare category where everyone agrees it needs work to feel more cohesive and reach comparable levels of performance. So please keep tweaking and testing with player feedback to create a fully realized Necromancer. To aid in this endeavor and have Stalking Blastbones fall in line with the direction I believe ZOS wants to take the class in, this is my suggestion to rework the skill.Current Stalking Blastbones tooltip
Stalking Blastbones proposed rework
- Summon a flaming skeleton from the ground after 2.5 seconds. The skeleton runs after the target and explodes when it gets close to them, dealing 3600 Flame Damage to all enemies nearby. Every second the skeleton spends chasing its target increases the damage of the explosion by 10%, up to a maximum of 50% more damage. Creates a corpse on death. 2700 magicka cost.
: Have Stalking Blastbones create a DoT after the initial explosion. It will deal 3600 flame damage and leave a corpse, but instead of the damage modifier based on distance, the target(s) in the blast zone will receive a DoT composed of the residual bone fragments of the minion. For the function of the DoT I have two ideas.
- The first (Cursed Fragments) is a moderate damage AoE DoT that inflicts the debuffs minor cowardice, and either minor magickasteal or gives the necromancer minor courage and creates a second corpse upon the final tick. This will deal 5400 damage over 8 seconds which equates to 1.5 blastbones giving you the equivalent of casting 2.5 blastbones over 10.5 seconds with one button cast.
- The second (Volatile Marrow) will have an increased chance to apply the burning condition and, is a higher damage DoT that will affect one target with 2 bigger "blasts". One at the halfway mark and the other at the final tick which will create a second corpse. Thematically I'd like one of the "blasts" to be random it could be the first tick, the halfway, or maybe two back to back big ticks at the end! This DoT will deal 10800 damage over 10 seconds which is the equivalent of 3 blastbones so over the course of 12.5 seconds you'd have 4 blastbones with one cast.
For both of these the magicka cost will be increased to 4500, but if the DoT doesn't find a target the fragments return to the caster restoring 1500 magicka to bring it closer in line with the current Stalking Blastbone's cost. This creates a less demanding and simplified rotation requirements only needing to cast Blastbones once every 10-13 seconds instead of 3 seconds. It also leans further into the DoT playstyle for the Necromancer while keeping the class flavor intact, and giving access to corpses near and far from the player.
The new Sacrificial Bones ability is a great idea to help necro fit the role being created, but there are so many Necromancer skills that see little to no use that Stalking Blastbones, a staple of the class should be the last skill removed from their toolkit. Like many have suggested the Sacrificial Bones and Grave Lord's Sacrifice abilities could still be applied to the Skeletal Mage and Skeletal Arcanist, and for what the buff does it makes more sense to come from a magically adept minion. The Necromancer absorbs the arcane potential of its thrall to empower their own spells. This could be left as is, toned down if it's too powerful in conjunction with Blastbones, or go the community favorite route and instead of the duration and damage increase of the morph add major brutality and sorcery to Grave Lord's Sacrifice so every class will have innate access to this buff and encourage the use of the skill.
Thanks for coming to my dead talk, and please continue to add constructive ideas.