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Captain
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 13,189
# 30
02-16-2013, 02:39 PM
I wanted to provide an example of a non-physical ability, since I've kind of outlined how physical abilities would work like weapon abilities.

Jam Sensors

As it stands now, it always hits. Sensors doesn't give you any resistance to it hitting - it just helps reduce the duration after it has hit. The various levels of Jam Sensors increases the duration as well as the damage the target can receive before it's automatically broken. CMS can add to the duration of Jam. Aux plays a role in the fun to be had here.

So it's an always hit ability where JS version + CMS + Aux vs. Sensors +Aux determines the duration.

Doesn't this strike anybody as odd?

Let's break out Tom and Jerry for a demonstration, eh?

Jerry's got 9 Sensors, 9 CMS, is running 125 Aux, has all sorts of gear boosting both Sensors and CMS, and has JS3.

Tom's got 0 in Sensors/CMS, is running 25 Aux (no WCE/WCP/ship bonus), has no gear that boosts either Sensors or CMS, and has JS1.

Let's give both TB1 (ignoring any need to hit, this is not about that right now).

Jerry with his oodles of CMS, 125 Aux, and JS3 hits Tom first. Tom's TB drops.
Tom with no CMS, 25 Aux, and JS1 hits Jerry first. Jerry's TB drops.

Wait? What? Seriously? Yes, that's the way it works with the current system. Sure Tom's JS1 isn't going to last anywhere near as long on Jerry as Jerry's JS3 would on Tom... but it's automatic hit - the resistance only works as a reduction to duration not a resistance to application.

Oh yeah, by the way - all that increased duration that Jerry's got over Tom? Let me throw a wrench into that for you.

Again, Tom's got 0 Sensors and is sporting 25 Aux. He's just been nailed by Jerry's MEGA JAM 9000! What does Tom do? He pops ST1. What? Yep, it's that simple for Tom to clear it. He doesn't need ST3 or anything? Nope. The guy with no skill points nor any gear can be just as effective with a JS1 and ST1 as the guy with all the points, all the gear, as well as JS3 and ST3.

So imagine instead then, that it worked like this:

Attacker
CMS provided a +Accuracy
Aux provided a +Accuracy
Rank of the Jam provided a +Accuracy

Defender
Sensors provided a +Defense
Aux provided a +Defense

Well, it looks like it should always be a hit then, no? There's more ways to get the +Acc than the +Def. CMS is a T5 skill. Sensors is a T4 skill. Sensors is cheaper. If somebody's spent those skill points in CMS...they deserve that edge.

So going back to Tom and Jerry... Tom's nowhere near as likely to actually land his JS1 as Jerry would be to land his JS3. Isn't that more fair to Jerry than the current system is? How is that a nerf to Sci? It's rewarding the guy that made the investment in Sci...so maybe it's a nerf to the guy that was just looking for a gimmick. That guy's not Sci though...

And then there's the other side of it:

Defender
Sensors provided a +Accuracy
Aux provided a +Accuracy
Rank of ST provided a +Accuracy

Attacker
CMS provided a +Defense
Aux provided a +Defense
Rank of the Jam provided a +Defense

Much like the way weapon attacks work, even if the +Acc was lower than the +Def... there would still be a chance to clear the Jam before it naturally expired. It would remove the ability for Tom to laugh at Jerry as Tom hits his ST1...but at the same time, it wouldn't leave Jerry able to bend Tom over the kitchen table completely...

So I have to wonder...how is a system that actually benefits Sci - something that is a nerf to them? If anything, it's a buff - those that invest will get nice rewards from doing so. Yes, the folks that make no investment other than picking up the lowest rank of something to capitalize on it... well, they'll see a more suitable return on their investment.

Say a person only has room for the JS1 or the ST1 - are they going to be heavily penalized? Those aren't the only sources involved in the formula are they? If they've made investments elsewhere - then they'll have a better return on that investment than somebody that made no investment at all, eh?
Vice Admiral Geist, Klingon Science Officer
V.S.S. Oracle, D'Kyr-class Science Vessel