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Spell Power Effects Will Soon Persist Through Death

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The latest Spell Power rework introduced in Mephisto patch makes ability damage to be calculated while abilities are in flight instead of only at the time of cast. Lead Live Designer Brett Crawford confirmed they plan to allow spell power buffs/debuffs to persist through death, lasting the full intended duration.

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Yesterday, the HOTS DEV team dropped a massive fundamental shift in how Spell Power is applied and while a few threads have touched on it, I feel like the underlying issue has not got enough light.

One of the features I like most about Heroes of the Storm when comparing it to other Mobas is how it attempts to be relatively intuitive -

What do I mean by this?

In League of Legends, when your supporting, if you land a sick combo, the optimal play is often to sit there and wait for your ADC to catch up to you and claim the 'last hit' in order to optimize the scenario for your team. Everything in your body says to murder the enemy you have just outplayed, but you have to sit there, wait, and even sometimes die if your ADC is bad because they need to claim the sacred 'last hit gold' in the name of getting fed.

In HOTS, with the exception of a couple heroes, claiming the kill is almost always right and generally what the team should be doing, this is intuitive to me (and I'd argue most people who like HOTS).

What does this have to do with the Spell Power Rework?

Be me, Garrosh. We also have an Ana, "Hi Grandma!" and let's also imagine a helpless ally hero, Illidan ,who after an unfortunate attempt at 1 v 5'ing the enemy team went south, narrowly escaping death thanks to a clutch 'Into the Fray' by Yours Truly, is now the target of the enemy Kael-thas' Pyroblast!

Fear not though young Illidan! For my big brain was 10-steps ahead of them and had already been walloping the Enemy Kael'thas with my Oppressor talent to ensure that, in combination with Gram Gram's Mind-numbing Agent, that the Pyroblast would be so weak at point of contact that you would surely survive this fateful encounter.

Knowing his days in the Nexus were numbered, Kael'thas throws out a final pathetic combo, living-bomb the Ana, Flamestrike sizzilin' beneath me and Gram Gram, then a Trait'ed Gravity Lapse to hold us in place. Knowing our victory was drawing near, Gram Gram and I comboed our sprays to make Kael'thas know that his spells, which normally are backed by the force of a million burning flamers, now had stopping power reduced to that of a wet napkin.

But what's this? Something my massive brain didn't account for? Illidan notices our scuttle with the Evil Wizard had left him vulnerable and realizes he can once again be the hero his team never asked for and activates 'The Hunt' targeting the enemy Kael'thas. Flying into battle, Pyroblast still hot in pursuit, Flamestrike and Living Bomb both nearing their boiling point, Illidan demolishes the nerd who was at 19 Convection stacks no less.

"What have you done?" Shrieks the decrepit Shrike.

For you see, in death, Kael'thas had been freed of the spell-dampening shackles that we had bound him in, no longer being reduced by 80 Spell Power, his spells once again stoked to their full glory incinerated our team.

In Conclusion

In my opinion, good and intuitive game design would make it so that killing the opponent should never punish your own team to the extent it can now. I shouldn't have to tell a Kerrigan to not finish her combo so I can slap an enemy with Garrosh so that their spells are weaker upon impact. I shouldn't take more damage because an enemy died instead of was maimed when I attempted to lower their spell power with an ability.

It is very likely this change was made because from a coding standpoint, keeping track of individual projectiles is probably not efficient, but if it means making the game so unintuitive that you have to start going against your gut to play correctly then I think we should consider other options.

tl;dr

Sometimes the correct play is now not to kill the enemy because reducing their spell power might be more impactful if they've already launched some delayed spells, which is non-intuitive game design in my opinion.

Hello friends,

We talked about this exact scenario today in one of our balance sync meetings. We have a task being worked on that will allow spell power buffs/debuffs persist through death, lasting the full intended duration.

Have a wonderful rest of the week!

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Never thought this is going to be a big deal, but it is now. Trading a dead hero's damage in favor of eliminating counter-intuitive elements from the game. Still being fucked after dead is a fun little way to feel even more miserable. What if one would want to die intentionally in these rare cases to clear himself off debuffs AND deal more damage? Isn't this also intuitive?

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11 hours ago, Kuarinofu said:

Never thought this is going to be a big deal, but it is now. Trading a dead hero's damage in favor of eliminating counter-intuitive elements from the game. Still being fucked after dead is a fun little way to feel even more miserable. What if one would want to die intentionally in these rare cases to clear himself off debuffs AND deal more damage? Isn't this also intuitive?

The argument presented here is to make the game more intuitive.  While killing yourself to remove spell damage debuffs from yourself might be an intelligent tactical decision, it is in no way intuitive for most people.  Trying to keep yourself alive and killing your enemy when possible is intuitive and what they want to promote.  If there was some reason to deviate from this, they want it to be important and obvious (like Tyrael's trait) not a hidden mechanical "gotcha" that leaves a player wondering why it happened.

Also, please don't cry that this is somehow unfair to the dying player (not the colorful words you used of course), if you got debuffed before death, it's entirely fair for those debuffs to run their duration.  Plus it's not like the opposite won't also be true, your spellpower buff should apply post death as well.  Works both ways.

All that said, I personally never really noticed this issue being that important, not to warrant a direct response in any case.  Still if they want to spend their time working on this over any number of other things then that's fine I guess.  Shrug.

Edited by KSDT

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Uncommon Patron

This modification is for their convenience. Spell Power should be applied at the moment of cast , no sooner or later. So dying to change the SP or a spell being weakened mid-flight are COUNTERINTUITIVE.

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16 hours ago, XeaKon said:

This modification is for their convenience. Spell Power should be applied at the moment of cast , no sooner or later. So dying to change the SP or a spell being weakened mid-flight are COUNTERINTUITIVE.

Agreed.  Spell power is calculated ONCE, at cast.  Doesn't get any easier.

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