Whe I recently played TESO again I started noticing a lack of vampires – at least relative to the last times I played and actually had a look. I guess that might be related to the three major problems I see with their incarnation in this game.
- The high fire damage
- The annoying blood sucking
- The relatively useless active abilities
The high fire damage
As every vampire will have noticed after a short time of playing, the damage by fire is way higher than before. 150% damage from one of the most common types of damage forces vampires to collect resistances against it, leave little to no space for other enchantements or improvements.
From my own experience I can say, that the difference done by fire is great enough to have prevented me from completing one of the main story quests so far. By now I’m about 10 levels higher than the quest’s level and the pure amount of fire spells and abilities is still impossible for me to deal with – at least without adding a lot to my resitances.
What could be changed?
I might need to mention, that the amount of possible damage by fire is way to high in general, when looking at other types of damage and the avaibility of defences against then.
I would propose to limit the damage increase at a lower value, while making it a bit harder for vampires to gain resistances against it. That would still mean, that vampires would have trouble with anyone burning them, but at least they wouldn’t behave like dry leaves put to a torch.
Would you agree, that +20% damage from fire and -20% to all resistances to fire would be sufficient here?
As mentioned in a previous article, sucking blood exists in two different versions. Ther is an in-fight version, that allows for lifesteal and there is a out-of-fight version, that reduces the vampiric hunger, keeping the “level” of vampirism and it’s drawback manageable.
The problem of these pretty powerful abilities is, that it is completely unreliable what kind of enemies and what specific enemies are affected at all. Additionally to that, these abilities can only used once per fight per enemy, meaning, that it is completely useless, once you fight anything but trash mobs. Against players or bosses that limitation makes the ability pretty much useless.
Obviously these two abilities share the limitation, so it’s also impossible to first feed on someone and then heal back up by draining essence from them.
What could be changed?
First I would propose to combine these abilities into a single one. That one would probivide the option of lifesteal by using up mana and the ability to actually feed under more complex circumstances.
To actually feed, the vampire’s target would need to be knocked down, giving the vampire time to actually drink. As a secondary security, the vampire must not be attacked while feeding, making sure there is enough risk on the vampire’s part.
To prevent the lack of usefulness in longer fights, the complete immunity to the effect would be replaced by a decrease of efficiency, meaning that only after 20 seconds without feeding the feeding would actually work as well as expected again.
That should remove the problems of abuse while making it more useful against stronger enemies, shouldn’t it?
The active abilities are pretty limited in number. There is the draining of blood mentioned above, a transformation to fog and a bat-based ultimate ability with AoE-effects.
While the sucking of blood can sometimes be nice, the fog is completely unsatisfactory. You exchange a 75% damage reduction and immunity against controlling effects against a complete immunity to healing and either a spedd-boost or some mediocre poison aoe damage.
To be honest I still didn’t find any actual use for either of those, the lack of healing usually outweights the benefits – and running away is pretty hard with all those gap-closers avaible and in use.
Having either lifesteal or invisibility with the ultimate ability is certainly nice to have and useful. Especially the lifesteal increases the time a vampire can tank a group of enemies by a huge amount. It should be especially useful for classic tanks obviously.
What could be changed?
Since I do like the ultimate and I did talk about sucking blood before, I’ll just be talking about the fog or cloud.
The general idea around it seems to be running away or at the very least preventing death for a while. Especially in groups this is not very useful, since the main survival mechanism, meaning healing, will be removed completely. On the other hand a short duration of 4 seconds seems sensible.
I would propose the following:
Base version: You suffer 75% less damage and can’t be affected by healing Magic or controlling effects. Your movement speed is increased by 10% and your health regeneration is increased by 100%.
The idea here is making fleeing possible. The increased regeneration should offset the lack of healing a bit and the speed should give some distance to either reengage or run off to safety.
Upgrade 1: You suffer 75% less damage and can’t be affected by healing Magic or controlling effects. Your movement speed is increased by 10%. Enemies within the fog are poisoned by 10 each second, healing you and a random close by ally for 50% of the damage done each.
This might be more friendly to soloers, that need to finish off someone but also need to refresh their health a bit. All in all, the group-healing should make it a bit more valuable for other play styles as well.
Upgrade 2: You suffer 75% less damage and recieve 75% lower healing but can’t be affected by controlling effects. Your movement speed is increased by 10% and your health regeneration is increased by 100%. Enemies within the fog move 10% slower.
The group version, that also allows fleeing. This kind of fleeing is actually more of a jumping ahead, by making sure enemies can’t escape easily while the vampire regains some strength. The main strength here is the existence of external healing, giving the vampire a chance at surviving at least a bit of damage while being a fog.
Would that work?
As always I would like to hear opinions about my proposal. Would those changes be balanced? Are they actually needed or am I just blind to some great uses, that are hidden in some of those abilities?