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Gone but not forgotten! Buffing off-meta item sets

Woodenplank
Woodenplank
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ahem Developer Voice:
Since 2014 we've continuously added sets to the game with every major update, such that by now we have over 400 unique item sets.

Some sets are just silly and fun. Some sets are niche, some sets serve mostly as stepping stones; stepping stones to acquiring the sets which are "meta" - those that provide top performance in their respective categories.

This leads to a bit of a conundrum; in reworking old sets considered "useless" in the current meta, we risk ruining niche or "roleplay" builds, alienating Players who enjoy roleplaying with certain item sets, or simply risk making a new top-tier set - only shifting the meta arbitrarily.

That being said... some cleanup is long overdue!

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Dungeon & Arena Sets
  • Strength of the Automaton: Increased the Weapon and Spell Damage bonus from 400 to 500.
    Developer Comment:
    While this still leaves the set behind other "Damage Type" sets like War Maiden or Swamp Raider, Physical damage remains one of the most prevalent damage types in the game, so we're adjusting this set very carefully.
  • Netch's Touch: Increased the Weapon and Spell Damage granted from 400 to 600.
  • Kinras's Wrath:
    • The (2)-piece bonus now grants 4% Critical Damage, instead of 129 Weapon and Spell Damage.
    • When reaching 5 stacks of Burning Heart the duration doubles to 10 seconds.
      Developer Comment:
      Sources of Major Berserk have multiplied since this set was first released. With this change, we hope the set will make a comeback as a reliable one-bar option. We're also trying something new with a regular set line providing critical damage!
  • Tzogvin's Warband: Upon reaching maximum stacks, the duration of the Precision buff now doubles.
  • SPELUNKER:
    • OLD (5 items) - Reduces the cost of your Undaunted abilities by 10%. When an ally uses one of your Undaunted ability synergies you restore 730 Magicka and Stamina. This effect can occur once every 5 seconds.
    • NEW (5 items) - Increases your damage against monsters taunted by another player by 5%. When you activate an ally's synergy, you restore 450 Magicka and Stamina and release Undaunted Might, dealing 1100 Oblivion damage to all nearby taunted enemies. This effect scales off the higher of your Max Magicka or Stamina.
  • UNDAUNTED BASTION:
    • OLD (5 items) - When you use a taunt ability while you are under 75% Health, gain a damage shield that absorbs 14127 damage for 6 seconds. This effect can occur once every 10 seconds.
    • NEW (5 items) - Reduces the cost of your Undaunted abilities by 10%. When an ally activates one of your Undaunted ability synergies, they gain Major Slayer for 8 seconds, increasing their damage dealt to Trial and Dungeon monsters by 10%.
      Developer Comment:
      Here we saw the chance to 'swap' the somewhat nonsensical bonuses for a set of medium armor unto a heavy armor tank set, since tanks tend to use more Undaunted abilities than Damage dealers. Likewise we've taken advantage of the unique standing of the Undaunted Skill line as having Synergies on all abilities and morphs. While this set won't provide Major Slayer uptime to rival popular Trial sets, it is perhaps a good starting point for newer tanks making their way through four person dungeons. And that's all it needs to be.
      Likewise we've updated the old Spelunker set to reflect its standing as a Damage Dealer set, while retaining the flavour of a dungeon delver set centered around killing monsters and keeping your resources up through teamwork.
  • Draugr's Rest
    • OLD (5) - When you complete a fully-charged Heavy Attack, you create a circle of consecrated ground that heals you and your group members within 5 meters for 5550 Health over 10 seconds. This effect can occur once every 10 seconds and scales off the higher of your Max Magicka or Stamina.
    • NEW (5) - When a group member within 20 meters takes damage that would be lethal, consecrate the ground beneath them granting them a damage shield for 10000 health that lasts up to 6 seconds, and increase their health recovery by 900 for 10 seconds. Enemies in the area afflicted with Major Maim for 3 seconds, reducing their damage dealt by 10%. This effect may occur once every 2 minutes, and the shield scales off the higher of your Max Magicka or Stamina.
      Developer Comment:
      Aside from being nearly identical to Winter's Respite (which is also rarely used), this set is never really used. While this new iteration is niche, it may be useful in completing No-Death challenges.
  • Hagraven's Garden:
    • The Hagraven's Garden effect now also increases magicka and stamina recovery for allies within the area by 150 each.
      Developer Comment:
      These days you can't swing a cat around without hitting a source of Major Protection, so we've tagged on a little something extra to this set. Not enough that it'll ever see popular use... but still.
  • Talfyg's Treachery:
    • OLD (5) - Increases your Weapon and Spell Damage by 372. Increases your damage taken from Flame and Fighter's Guild abilities by 5%.
    • NEW (5) - Increases your Weapon and Spell Damage by 240 and your Critical Damage and Healing by 5%. When equipped by a Vampire, these bonuses are doubled, but damage taken from Flame and Figther's Guild abilities is increased by 10%.
      Developer Comment:
      We're trying something new here in modifying set stats based on Player's curse status. While it could be used as a fairly basic damage dealing set for mortals, vampires can use it to play into the mindset of sacrificing safety for power.
  • Widowmaker:
    • OLD (5) - When your alchemical poison fires, you drop a poisonous spore in front of you that bursts after 1
      second, dealing <2856> over 10 seconds to all enemies within 5 meters. This effect scales off the higher of your Weapon or Spell Damage.
    • NEW (5) - When your alchemical poison fires, you drop a poisonous spore underneath the target for 5 that pulses every second, dealing <571> Poison damage and causing the target to take 1.5% additional Damage from Poison and Disease attacks for 4 seconds.
      This effect stacks up to 4 times.
      Developer Comment:
      In its current iteration this set's only purpose is to act as a trauma trigger for people who experienced its PVP strength upon initial release.
      However, as of now it chiefly functions as a nerfed Pillar of Nirn that requires self-nerfing Poisons to proc (from a PVE dps perspective)
      (Pillar has the same 1-second-to-apply DoT on a 10 second cooldown. Only it deals ~8% more damage, and is easier to proc)

      Rather than simply amping up the damage to offset the Enchants>Poisons imbalance, we're strengthening its role as a static-target DoT, and allowing it possibly play a role in Poison and Disease heavy group compositions.
      Note the apparently low damage: this is before any scaling, and this is now a pulsing ground DoT, rather than a 10-second "sticky" DoT. The total damage remains the same, but the ramping % damage taken ensures at least ~3% more damage than before.
      (And all your other Poison blasting Group mates will *love* it!)

Crafted Sets
  • Might of the Lost Legion:
    Developer Comment:
    Like... honestly? No idea.
  • Heartland Conqueror: This set's (5)-piece bonus now also doubles the trait effects of shields, which (though technically armor) occupy a weapon slot.
  • Grave-stake Collector: This set now also grants 3 ultimate when collecting a Grave-Stake, up to one every 2 seconds.
    Developer Comment:
    We realize this set mostly has appeal as a role-playing set, and that's okay. We're just giving it a bit more oomph.
  • Telvanni Efficiency: removed the superfluous Companion check when in PVP zones.
    Developer Comment:
    This will allow the set to be used for cost reduction in No-Proc Campaigns, just like Battlefield Acrobat or Armor of the Seducer.

Monster Masks
  • Maarselok:
    • This set now only gains bonus damage from counting Damage over Time effects on the enemy target, rather than any negative effect.
    • Increased the scaling per effect from 10% to 14%, to account for the reduced number of contributing effects.
      Developer Comment:
      You know why.
  • Ilambris:
    • Increased the duration of the meteor shower to 6 seconds, up from 5.
    • Increased the damage per interval by roughly ~10%.
      Developer Comment:
      These changes should™ help put the set more in line with other damage dealing monster sets. We're throwing most of the power-up into duration, however, to solidfy its role as a damage set for stationary fights.
  • Nerien'eth:
    • OLD When you deal direct damage, you have a 15% chance to summon a Lich crystal that explodes after 2 seconds, dealing Magic damage to all enemies within 4 meters. This effect can occur once every 3 seconds and scales off the higher of your Weapon or Spell Damage.
    • NEW When you deal direct damage, apply a stack of Heartrend to your enemy, up to once every 0.5 seconds. Upon reaching 3 stacks, consume them to summon a Lich Crystal that explodes after 3 seconds, dealing Magic damage to all enemies within 4 meters. A Lich Crystal can only be summoned once every 4 seconds and scales off the higher of your Weapon or Spell Damage.
      Developer Comment:
      While these changes technically lower the upper limit of the set's DPS (minimum time between procs increased) it now has a failsafe mechanism and does not rely on luck.
      This should™ allow Players to achieve more consistent DPS results. We're also increasing the time for the Crystal to detonate, however, so as to not inadvertedly make this a "PVP nuke."
  • Kra'gh:
    • Increased the target area of this set, making it easier to land. Slightly adjusted the size of the dreugh limbs to indicate the increased range.
    • Increased the damage scaling of this set.
      Developer Comment:
      This set has always been notoriously difficult to land, given its short range. And even if a Player did land it consistently, it provided one of the lowest damage outputs among the "pure damage" monster sets.
      However, to avoid the set providing 'free damage' for mainly defensive builds, we're weaving this buff into the scaling. Players with 6500 Weapon/Spell Damage or higher should™ see increased damage, with players below that level seeing unchanged or even lessened damage.
  • Spawn of Mephala: Increased the damage of this set's proc by ~29% to put it more in line with other damage dealing monster sets.
  • Stormfist: The final Fist-Closing damage of this set is now increased by 20% if there is only one target in the final area.

Overland Sets
  • Unfathomable Darkness: The final Crow launched by this set now deals an additional 30% damage.
    Developer Comment:
    This set has spent so long living in Pillar of Nirn's shadow that it's getting vitamin D deficiency, so we're giving it a bit more oomph!
  • Necropotence:
    • Increased the maximum magicka granted by this set from 3123 to 4000.
    • The bonus magicka from this set now persists for up to 5 seconds after a pet has died or expired.
      Developer Comment:
      *Laughs in Blastbones*
  • Silks of the Sun:
    • Increased the Weapon and Spell Damage bonus from 400 to 500.
      Developer Comment:
      As with Strength of the Automaton, we're not quite going to the 600 standard of sets like War Maiden or Swamp raider since Fire damage remains uniquely potent due to the Burning status effects, and other fiery synergies. So we're giving this set a more conservative buff.
  • Vampire lord:
    • The (2) piece set bonus now gives 129 Weapon and Spell Damage, rather than 1096 Magicka.
    • Adjusted the (3) piece to give 1096 Stamina and Magicka, rather than 129 Weapon and Spell Damage.
      Developer Comment:
      This is one of those sets with a strong roleplaying flavour that makes us hesitant to change it too much. So for now we're upping the overall power slightly and making sure it doesn't favor Magicka builds over Stamina ones.
  • Flanking Strategist:
    • OLD: Adds 400 Weapon and Spell Damage to your damaging abilities when you attack an enemy from behind or their sides.
    • NEW: Adds 400 Weapon and Spell Damage to your damaging abilities when you attack an enemy from behind or their sides. When emerging from stealth or invisibility gain Element of Surprise for 5 seconds, enabling the flanking bonus regardless of enemy facing.'
  • Dragonguard Elite
    • Adjusted the 4-piece bonus to 129 Weapon and Spell Damage, rather than 129 Stamina recovery.
    • Adjusted the cooldown between building stacks from one per 0.5 seconds to one per 0.7 seconds.
    • Increased the duration of the Dragonguard Tactics buff from 5 seconds to 8 seconds.
  • Vivec's Duality:
    • OLD Your weapon charges over 15 seconds while not Weapon Swapping. Once fully charged, restore 6636 Magicka and Stamina after Weapon Swapping.
    • NEW While on your Primary Weapon, gain 290 Weapon and Spell Damage. While on your Secondary Weapon gain 260 Magicka and Stamina Recovery.
      Developer Comment:
      While this lowers the optimum amount of resource restore from this set, it's usage should™ be significantly smoother to use.
      This now also adds to the rather limited repetoire of sets that function in No-Proc campaigns.


PVP Sourced Sets
  • Rallying Cry: Increased the dropoff per group member to 28 Weapon and Spell Damage and 160 Critical Resistance
    Developer Comment:
    The current iteration of the set provides 258 Weapon and Spell Damage and 1360 Critical Resistance to a 4-person group.
    Compartively, Robes of Transmutation and Powerful Assault provide 300 Weapon and Spell damage or 1400 Critical Resistance, respectively. On shorter durations.
    With these changes, 4-person groups will still enjoy healthy stat bonuses, while the set falls off to small bonuses at 8-person groups and provide no benefit for full 12-person groups.
    Solo players will, of course, remain unaffected by these changes.
  • Morag Tong: Increased the damage taken debuff of this set to 15%.
    Developer Comment:
    Given the relative rarity of Disease and Poison damage this set didn't really get to shine even in large group compositions. This change should™ help push it into the limelight.

Trial Sets
  • Twice Fanged Serpent:
    • Renamed the pieces of this set to "... of the Twice-Fanged Serpent" instead of "of the Two-Fanged Snake" to streamline inventory and collection searches.
    • The buff of this set will now begin to lose stacks at the rate of 1 every 2 seconds, when the buff is not refreshed, rather than all at once.
    • Reduced the duration of the penetration buff to 3 seconds, down from 5.
      Developer Comment:
      Much like the current iteration of Death Dealer's Fete, this set now rewards Players for minimizing downtime between attacking, but does not punish them unduly for dropping combat for a moment or two.
  • (Perfected) Tooth of Lokkestiiz: This set's (5) piece proc now grants a unique +10% damage bonus, rather than the generic Major Slayer buff.
    Developer Comment:
    We've worked up a bit of redundancy of sources of Major Slayer to the point where several older sets, like this one, felt like a dud for a five-piece bonus. This change should™ help make it a strong one-bar-able' option once again.
  • (Perfected) Eye of Nahviintaas:
    • OLD (5) - When an ally activates one of your synergies, you and the ally who activated the synergy get 12% cost reduction for non-Ultimate abilities for 3 seconds. This effect can occur every 6 seconds per target.
    • NEW (5) - When an ally activates one of your synergies, you and the ally who activated the synergy gain Dragon's Eye for 8 seconds. This effect may occur once every 8 seconds per target.
      When affected by Dragon's Eye, activating a Synergy generates 3 Ultimate, and the cost of non-Ultimate abilities is reduced by 12%.
      Developer Comment:
      Maybe now it won't be deconstructed. Maybe.
  • Wise Mage (Aka. Aether Strategy):
    • OLD (5) - Enemies you damage with fully-charged Heavy Attacks are afflicted with Minor Vulnerability for 10 seconds, increasing their damage taken by 5%.
    • NEW (5) - Enemies you damage with fully-charged Heavy Attacks are afflicted with Aetherial Vulnerability for 10 seconds, increasing their damage taken from single-target attacks by 7%.
      Developer Comment:
      Given the abundance of of Minor Vulnerability sources, we thought this largely forgotten set could be an excellent blueprint for introducing some more support oriented sets into a DD catalogue that mostly consists of "selfish" sets nowadays.
      And if we do this enough, you won't be able to just throw all of them on the tanks and healers.

Mythic Items
  • Belharza's Band:
    • Light Attacks no longer need to be consecutive to build stacks of Belharza's Temper.
    • Increased the number of stacks required to proc the set from 5 to 6.
      Developer Comment:
      You had to look up what this mythic even did, didn't you?
  • Faun’s Lark Cladding: Now also passively reduces the cost of sprint by 15%.
  • Snow Treads: Wearing this mythic now reduces the effect of movement speed bonuses by 50% while in combat.
    Developer Comment:
    To clarify, this means that effects like the Celerity Champion Star yields only 5% additional movement speed, rather than the regular 10%.
    The availability of Swift trait jewelry and the increasing abundance of Minor- and Major Expedition mean that intended drawback of this mythic became almost irrelevant; allowing Players to reach a premium movement speed regardless of their inability to sprint.
    These changes should™ help push the set towards our ideal; a mythic that sacrifices top mobility in favor of stability.
  • Malacath's Band of Brutality: Increased the bonus damage from 16% to 18%.
    Developer Comment:
    Nothing to see here, just an old mythic getting a bit of love.

Thanks for reading!

Should™
Should™ does not guarantee effect. Should™ is not the promise of effect. Should™ is a declaration of probability. Should™ is, at best, an expectation. That outcome A Should™ be expected does not guarantee outcome A. Nor does it even guarantee that the opposite outcome of A, i.e. -A, won't happen.
Should™ is a declaration of intent.
Should™ means involving you in our thought process.
Should™ means we're trying.
Edited by Woodenplank on March 10, 2024 9:32PM
I think it is central to ESO's well-being to critique the developers when they change the game (or fail to change something).
But the negativity can be exhausting, so I vow to post 50/50 negativity and appreciation.
  • NoSoup
    NoSoup
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    I feel like buffs like Major Slayer need to be behind a difficulty wall oh at least a normal trial. Introducing it to a dungeon set, especially a dungeon that can be solo'd normal, would just degrade the value of trial sets and make it even harder to find trial groups.
    Formally SirDopey, lost forum account during the great reset.....
  • Soarora
    Soarora
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    Haha, I love how you used the patch note formatting! Some of these I totally agree with and would love to see, like buffing tzog a little (it was meta briefly last year) and your ideas for the undaunted skill related sets are pretty neat.

    Also totally would like a buff to unfathomable darkness. I want to use it but it's just so bad.
    Edited by Soarora on March 11, 2024 12:21AM
    PC/NA Dungeoneer (Tank/DPS/Heal), Trialist (DPS/Tank/Heal), and amateur Battlegrounder (DPS) with a passion for The Elder Scrolls lore
  • Turtle_Bot
    Turtle_Bot
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    Love these, I want to add one of my own if that's ok.

    Dungeon Sets:

    Overwhelming Surge:
    • The (2)-piece bonus now grants 129 Weapon and Spell Damage, instead of 1096 Maximum Magicka.
    • The (4)-piece bonus now grants 657 Critical Chance, instead of 129 Weapon and Spell Damage.
    • OLD (5) - When you deal damage with a Class ability, you surround yourself with a torrent that deals 149 Shock Damage to enemies within 8 meters of you every 1 second for 6 seconds. 15% of the damage you deal this way is restored to you as Magicka. This effect can occur every 7 seconds and scales off the higher of your Weapon or Spell Damage.
    • NEW (5) - When you deal direct damage with a Class ability, you surround the target with a torrent that deals 249 Shock Damage to the target and enemies within 8 meters of the target every 1 second for 7 seconds. The target takes 5% increased shock damage and 5% of the damage you deal this way is restored to you as Magicka or Stamina (whichever is higher) with a max of 300 per second. This effect can occur once every 10 seconds and scales off the higher of your Weapon or Spell Damage.
      DEVELOPER COMMENT:
      While this set is supposed to be an overwhelming mix of damage and sustain, power creep has long since seen this set become very underwhelming in both aspects. This set is also not hybridized for our stamina players so we have aimed to fix this by allowing the resources returned to be based on whichever maximum is higher and adjusted the maximum magicka to be critical chance while adjusting the order of the 2-4 piece bonuses. We have also found it shocking that the shock damage type in general doesn't have any unique percent bonuses from sets like its frost and flame counterparts have.
      We have decided to give this set some oomph and additional utility by increasing its base damage, increase shock damage taken by the target affected by this set and allowing it to be more consistent for sustain by surrounding the target with the torrent instead of the player.
      To balance out this new power and utility, we have changed the condition to only proc from dealing direct damage to prevent it becoming a set and forget type of set with the new long durations of damage over time abilities. We have kept this sets current low scaling to prevent it from gaining too much damage, given the set a longer downtime and lastly, significantly reduced the resource return and added a cap to the maximum resources returned since the sustain will be much more reliable while still allowing it to provide an alternative option for groups and those who like to shock their enemies into submission.
    Something to note with the set:
    For those who don't know, this set has horrible scaling, with full raid dummy buffs and 8400+ spell damage (for a total of roughly 29k+ effective spell power) the sets current damage is 2126 shock damage.
    nqxom3oisbp1.png
    fwh9cs89zcxn.png
    Compared to Pillar of Nirn at those stats which has an 11.5k burst + a 33k DoT for nearly 45k total or 4.5k damage per second with a 100% uptime.
    56jsknvqpe9w.png

    With the changes made, Overwhelming surge would deal roughly 3730 damage per second with those stats above (8400 spell damage for 29k effective power) and have a 30% downtime, but would have a larger AoE than pillar and grant 186 mag or stam back each time it deals damage (up to a max of 300 per second). When accounting for the downtime of the set, the new version effectively deals 2611 damage and 130 (or 210 if there are enough enemies being damaged) resource return per second over the 10 second period, compared to pillars 4458 damage per second over that same 10 second period.
  • LaintalAy
    LaintalAy
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    Necropotence:

    Increased the maximum magicka granted by this set from 3123 to 4000.

    ahem ... Customer Voice
    So nerfing it years ago was a mistake, then? I could be wrong, but it was originally >5000
    Will you be putting the butterflys back into Rivenspire as part of the deal?
    PC EU
    UTC+10:30

    seasons will pass you by
  • JonesFPS
    JonesFPS
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    Very interesting ideas. Lets keep this going, maybe it gains enough tracktion so a dev will notice it.
  • Woodenplank
    Woodenplank
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    LaintalAy wrote: »
    ahem ... Customer Voice
    So nerfing it years ago was a mistake, then? I could be wrong, but it was originally >5000
    Will you be putting the butterflys back into Rivenspire as part of the deal?

    Oh I'm new here, I can't speak for the actions of my predecessors ;)

    The More-Beautiful-Butterflies account upgrade will of course come to the Crown store or whatever.
    But this thread is about item sets, so that's none of my business :)
    NoSoup wrote: »
    I feel like buffs like Major Slayer need to be behind a difficulty wall oh at least a normal trial. Introducing it to a dungeon set, especially a dungeon that can be solo'd normal, would just degrade the value of trial sets and make it even harder to find trial groups.
    I can totally understand that.
    But even at maximum uptime of Undaunted Bastion as I've designed it, it really won't do much for Trial groups.

    The "RoJo" support will still far-far-far outperform it, and even sets like Master Architect could achieve better uptime.
    This was mostly about getting (perhaps) newer Tank players into the notion of "Hey... tank sets in this game means Heavy Armor that buffs your allies!?"... since I tend to see some confusion on that subject among inexperienced players.
    Edited by Woodenplank on March 11, 2024 11:43AM
    I think it is central to ESO's well-being to critique the developers when they change the game (or fail to change something).
    But the negativity can be exhausting, so I vow to post 50/50 negativity and appreciation.
  • biminirwb17_ESO
    biminirwb17_ESO
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    The original twin sisters set was 2 axes, lots of sets have changed over the years.
  • moo_2021
    moo_2021
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    Give us gear trait crafting.

    Let us pick traits from craftable or overland sets. The stats could be lower to ensure they're never on par as dungeon gears.
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