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  1. #1

    Suggestion: Paragon Classes

    Don’t you want to be just like Thrall, Varian, or Sylvanas? How about Medivh, Illidan, or Maiev?

    Concept: As the heroes of Azeroth grow in power, so too do their enemies. They need something to give them an edge when the day comes that it is no longer just a life or death struggle, but a conflict that could destroy the very world.
    Enter the paragon class. Heroes above level 90 can begin their progression in a paragon class, granting them new abilities and options for their characters that may not exist in another form. Growth in a paragon class works in tandem with the normal leveling system, so as your experience in a base class goes up, so too does your experience in a paragon class.
    A character can level all of his paragon classes (5 levels of experience equivalent to 90-95 of regular progression), but he must unlock each as he works on them. Speaking to a class trainer allows you to change your Paragon Class between the choices you have or turning it off.
    Because paragon classes are a smaller collection of highly specialized abilities and talents, they are easier to build into the fabric of the rest of the game, allowing for more to be created easily and offered with future patches/expansions.

    How PCs can interact with your character.
    Not required: Paragon classes provide an alternative style of gameplay to what you are used to. Over the course of 5 PC levels, you learn to use the class like you would any other. If you don't want to change your character from a normal class, you don't have to. All regular classes will have a power of theirs updated at level 92 and a brand new power at 95, which gets replaced by the "ultimate" power of the Paragon class if you do take one.
    Grind: The first paragon class is, in essence, free to level if you want. Simply unlock the class and start gaining experience as you go from 90-95. After you cap your regular class, you can continue to gain the remaining experience in your paragon class, or start or switch to a new PC.
    Change armor: Some (particularly tank-based) PCs will affect the type of armor you can wear, either restricting or increasing it.
    Weapon proficiencies: Some PCs will add, but never take away, your weapon proficiencies.
    Gear: When you unlock your paragon class for the first time, you will gain access to a special vendor with "Starter" gear related to your new PC. In this way, you're not left out by changing armor/ability types.
    Tier: You still roll on your base class tier, however, tier gear (making use of the tech introduced with MoP) changes to match your PC, so a tier-set rogue will also be a tier-set demon hunter, but he may still need additional pieces (boots, gloves). The look of the gear also changes (unless you use a universal minor glyph to keep it the same) to match the PC.
    Replaced powers: Some PCs will add powers to a class that it already gains. Overlap is to be expected in some cases, but often the new power is stronger than the current, or the current power also gets better at the prescribed level.
    Homogenization: Although a couple classes will receive the option to join each Paragon class, the different play styles created by weaving current spells with the new should help keep everything fresh.

    Current list of Paragon Classes.
    Archmage (warlock, mage)
    Archdruid (druid)
    Bard (mage, monk, priest, shaman)
    Blademaster (death knight, hunter, monk, paladin, rogue, shaman, warrior)
    Blood Mage (death knight, mage, priest, warlock)
    Dark Ranger (hunter, rogue)
    Demon Hunter (death knight, monk, paladin, rogue, warrior)
    Necromancer (death knight, mage, priest, warlock)
    Shadow Hunter (druid, hunter, shaman)
    Templar (priest, paladin, warrior)
    Warden (druid, rogue, warrior)

    List by class (on the character select/build screen, you will see an icon for the paragon classes you have access to and which you are using (if any) currently.
    Death Knight: Blademaster, Blood Mage, Demon Hunter, Necromancer
    Druid: Archdruid, Shadow Hunter, Warden
    Hunter: Blademaster, Dark Ranger, Shadow Hunter
    Mage: Archmage, Bard, Blood Mage, Necromancer
    Monk: Bard, Blademaster, Demon Hunter
    Paladin: Blademaster, Demon Hunter, Templar
    Priest: Bard, Blood Mage, Necromancer, Templar
    Rogue: Blademaster, Dark Ranger, Demon Hunter, Warden
    Shaman: Bard, Blademaster, Shadow Hunter
    Warlock: Archmage, Blood Mage, Demon Hunter, Necromancer
    Warrior: Blademaster, Demon Hunter, Templar, Warden

    ---------- Post added 2013-01-30 at 07:35 PM ----------

    Example Paragon Class: Demon Hunter (note: as a demon hunter, you cannot use the equivalent warlock glyph)
    Unlocks – Level 90+ Death Knight, Monk, Rogue, Warlock, or Warrior.
    Class Type: Tank
    The demon hunter allows you to blend your class abilities to aid in the destruction of the legion. The legendary warglaives of azinoth can now be rolled on by any class able to enter the Demon Hunter paragon class.
    Weapons: If you don’t already have it, you gain the ability to dual-wield one-handed swords and axes.
    Abilities: Demon Hunter Traits (level 90), Cursed Vision and Demonic Flight (PC level 1), Evasion (PC level 2), Immolate (PC level 3), Manaburn (PC level 4), Apotheosis (PC level 5).

    Demon Hunter Traits by class
    Death Knight/Warrior: As a demon hunter, you are restricted to mail armor (Agility-preferred), but you gain a demonic aura of protection that keeps you as safe as any tank. Some spell animations now make use of your wings, aura, or another special visual, and you summon demons instead of undead.

    Monk/Rogue/Warlock: As a demon hunter, you gain access to mail armor (Agility-preferred), and you gain a demonic aura of protection that keeps you as safe as any tank. Some spell animations now make use of your wings, aura, or another special visual, and you summon demons instead of undead. Rogues also gain growl (as their symbiosis power), while warlocks can use torment without relying on their void walker.

    Cursed Vision
    At PC level 1, you gain Cursed Vision. This allows you to track demons and undead.

    Demonic Flight
    In areas where it’s allowed, you gain the ability to sprout wings and fly (as druid flight form) at PC level 1.

    Evasion
    When you reach PC level 2 as a demon hunter, you gain evasion, as the glyphed rogue ability. When not on cooldown, the ability now also grants you a passive +10% dodge (without this PC, rogues’ evasion improves at level 97).

    Manaburn
    PC Level 3 teaches the Demon Hunter Manaburn. Cost = 10% of base resource (runic power, energy, mana, rage). The target gains manaburn debuff (magic, dispellable), increasing the cost of spells by 10% for 30 seconds. 1 minute cooldown.

    Immolation
    This ability, gained at PC level 4, works just like the warlock spell, hellfire, except the demon hunter can choose to cast it on an enemy target.

    Apotheosis
    This PC level 5 spell allows the demon hunter to transform the same as a warlock with the Glyph of Demon Hunting during MoP Beta, allowing the character to tank in that form. The glyph does not function for demon hunters, so there’s no risk of overlap.

    ---------- Post added 2013-01-30 at 07:42 PM ----------

    Quest: The Path of the Demon Hunter
    Demonhunter: "Welcome to my domain <class>. I see you are interested in my talents. I am willing to train you, but you must first do something for me. Are you prepared?"
    Objective: Retrieve 100 demonic shards from level 90+ demons around Azeroth and Outland, then use them over the corpse of Illidan Stormrage to restore the Skull of Guldan. Bring the completed skull to the Demon Hunter trainer.
    Reward: Demon Hunter Paragon Class.
    Last edited by Edlarel; 2013-01-30 at 09:36 PM.

  2. #2
    The Patient Jonticus's Avatar
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    so like prestige classes in D&D? Would be cool, but would wreck balance more than it already is i guess.

  3. #3
    Big no from me for the same reason as someone wanting the dual class idea (Warlock+rogue) in a previous thread. Blizz cannot balance the existing classes in either PvP NOR PvE and you want to add another several hundred class combinations? This concept works for a game like Diablo where you are supposed to be the ultimate warrior of destruction. It does not work in an MMO. So again, while a cool idea, hell no.

  4. #4
    Yes, that's the idea (PrC from D&D, and Alternate levels in other MMO's). As to balance, They would be considerably easier to balance than a full class, but that's just my opinion speaking from a designer's standpoint. It wouldn't be hundres of abilities. I would expect probably about as many as a new class would have if it were made, but spread out.

  5. #5
    Anything that allows us to play as a true necromancer is welcome. By the way, a very interesting idea, at least Blizzard would certainly have to consider it ...


  6. #6
    The Insane Slowpoke is a Gamer's Avatar
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    It's a tricky thing to make work and keep it balanced. If you don't give players a choice of Paragon, then you run into "why not just give them the skills and not change their name?" But if you do give them the choice, you have to make them perfectly balanced or you'll see "Mage-Knight" and "Death Knight Archmage" become the pairings everyone takes.
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  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Edlarel View Post
    Don’t you want to be just like Thrall, Varian, or Sylvanas? How about Medivh, Illidan, or Maiev?
    No.

    Your idea incorporates another mandatory grind, as well as far more factors which increase class balance as well as does not fix currently broken classes and specs. Even the current racials are still not balanced, especially not in both PvE and PvP.

    In a new MMORPG I would consider it. Besides above examples, we got class specialization in SWTOR, and we also got Paragon levels in D3.

    I see some advantages with this system because it does allow some "previously impossible classes" to be implemented.
    "When i am done with you, you won't trust your own mind."

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by dokhidamo View Post
    It's a tricky thing to make work and keep it balanced. If you don't give players a choice of Paragon, then you run into "why not just give them the skills and not change their name?" But if you do give them the choice, you have to make them perfectly balanced or you'll see "Mage-Knight" and "Death Knight Archmage" become the pairings everyone takes.
    Balance is kinda relative anyway. One person thinks rogues are OP while another believes them to be inferior to everything else. The changes presented by these help add flavor (rexxar is a hunter/blademaster, so he does melee and has a pet) and fun options. Classes would have their own abilities go up in power when they don't use a PC, so you can still just be a rogue.

    The end concept would be that a Rogue Demon Hunter = a DK Demon hunter = A rogue = A Death Knight (at level 95/100).

    @Iolalola - It would be a grind for people who want to max each of their options out, yes. But it would be a grind in the sense that leveling a new character is a grind (albeit the xp is only equal to 90-95). The class doesn't play the exactly the same anymore by cap, so you have to learn it. The easiest way is to have it gain "levels." And they wouldn't be necessary for character power because they present alternative options only.
    And really, if you think about it, the first one would be "free" since you gain exp in it at the same rate you gain xp while leveling anyway. The only grind would be if you later want to start another.
    Last edited by Edlarel; 2013-01-30 at 08:19 PM.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Northem View Post
    Anything that allows us to play as a true necromancer is welcome. By the way, a very interesting idea, at least Blizzard would certainly have to consider it ...
    Well there's various MMORPGs out there which allow you play a "true" necromancer...

    Quote Originally Posted by dokhidamo View Post
    It's a tricky thing to make work and keep it balanced. If you don't give players a choice of Paragon, then you run into "why not just give them the skills and not change their name?" But if you do give them the choice, you have to make them perfectly balanced or you'll see "Mage-Knight" and "Death Knight Archmage" become the pairings everyone takes.
    You can always allow players to change their Paragon class (costs 20 EUR). Ca-shing.
    Last edited by lolalola; 2013-01-30 at 08:16 PM.
    "When i am done with you, you won't trust your own mind."

  10. #10
    Warchief Galbrei's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonticus View Post
    so like prestige classes in D&D? Would be cool, but would wreck balance more than it already is i guess.
    Just like prestige classes in D&D. I personally hate the idea.

  11. #11
    While I like the idea of being able to further your character once you're 90, it seems quite hard work to balance the classes we have, without adding a brand new version of each to balance as well.

    Also, having played other MMO's in the past that had such a system, and seen the "Alpha Class" concept there, it didn't end up to well for those that didn't want to "change class"

  12. #12
    Don't see the point. Blizzard has to rebalance for the entirety of endgame with the assumption that everyone takes one of these prestige classes, in exchange for... Stuff we would have gotten for our classes anyway?
    If you are particularly bold, you could use a Shiny Ditto. Do keep in mind though, this will infuriate your opponents due to Ditto's beauty. Please do not use Shiny Ditto. You have been warned.

  13. #13
    More stuff to lvl, kill me now
    N

  14. #14
    For those wondering how this will equal out to a character without a PC:

    Rogue at level 92 would gain their improved evasion ability (as described), and a new power at level 95 that gets replaced by Apotheosis. The same would be true for all classes. Something updated at 92 and something new at 95 that gets replaced by the "ultimate" from the paragon. It would become a case of when that alternative is a good choice and when it isn't (like talents now). Besides normal class balancing, the only extra work would be making sure that the "ultimates" line up well enough.

    I'm updating the post as feedback comes in. I'll make sure to also include updates in my replies for those following this and not looking every 2 seconds.
    Last edited by Edlarel; 2013-01-30 at 08:37 PM.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Edlarel View Post
    Balance is kinda relative anyway. One person thinks rogues are OP while another believes them to be inferior to everything else. The changes presented by these help add flavor (rexxar is a hunter/blademaster, so he does melee and has a pet) and fun options. Classes would have their own abilities go up in power when they don't use a PC, so you can still just be a rogue.
    Balance itself is. We are unable to see the complete picture though. The relevance of specifc imbalances are subjective. Then we have margin of error. How close can the numbers be so they're considered balanced? Then we have all kind of cases where we factor imbalance (between currently 34 specs): specific boss encounters with all kind of mechanics, 10m, 25m, 5m leveling, 5m hc, 5m cm (challenge mode), solo leveling, solo end game, scenarios, solo time limit (brawler's guild). That's PvE alone. Haven't even touched PvP there.

    @Iolalola - It would be a grind for people who want to max each of their options out, yes. But it would be a grind in the sense that leveling a new character is a grind (albeit the xp is only equal to 90-95). The class doesn't play the exactly the same anymore by cap, so you have to learn it. The easiest way is to have it gain "levels." And they wouldn't be necessary for character power because they present alternative options only.
    Lets face it, this isn't how WoW works. If there's a performance gain to get you're expected to take it. At level 90 you're expected to do your dailies to get the rep (and VP) to achieve max performance. Even mediocre guilds and quality PuGs strongly stimulate this. Because it unlocks content, it'd also be a requirement for challenge modes.

    Every time a feature like this is implemented there's like 2 possible outcomes:

    *) It is cosmetic, quality of life (irrelevant). Akin to non-pay-to-win cash shop in MMORPGs. I'm alright with it then.
    *) Two, its a grind which matters in which case its mandatory. I don't like that, unless there's a buy to skip the grind with real money. Something which Blizzard has always evaded.

    There just isn't a middle ground.

    Remember archeology? You had to be really lucky, as plate wearer you had to grind it, in order to get that 359 weapon in the first week after you killed everything on normal. Now archeology is OK since it doesn't give a meaningful advantage. It helps your alts, gives you lore and that's it.
    "When i am done with you, you won't trust your own mind."

  16. #16
    Moderator MoanaLisa's Avatar
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    No offense intended to anyone but I hate this idea and suspect that Blizzard would as well. It would by necessity either be grindy or too easy to achieve and either way would be considered absolutely mandatory to do to mean anything. You don't see people assuming they have arrived at end game at 88 and this wouldn't be any different at 90.
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  17. #17
    The Patient Jonticus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Galbrei View Post
    Just like prestige classes in D&D. I personally hate the idea.
    haha, yeah i never thought of adding that, well played Sirrah!

  18. #18
    You would feel required to play as a melee hunter (using the blademaster PC) even though you've leveled to 90 (and can go to 95) as a strictly ranged class? That makes no sense to me, but okay. I see them more as an "alt without switching toons" option. I want to tank with my rogue? I will most likely go combat and use the Demon Hunter PC. I can do it as Sub or Assassination, but it might not be optimal; whereas I would probably prefer to use those specs with Blade Master Dark Ranger, respectively.

    As stated, these offer an alternative gameplay option. Tanking shaman, rogue, warlock; healing mage; necromancer. All of those are things people have been asking for forever. If you don't want them, that's fair, but (in this incarnation) they wouldn't be forced upon you.

    I'm not saying they're perfect, but the idea could be worked on and made into something fun to do.

    Example Paragon Class: Blademaster
    Unlocks – Level 90+ Death Knight, Hunter, Monk, Paladin, Rogue, Shaman, Warrior
    Class Type: Damage Dealer
    The Blademaster is an unparalleled combatant, able to move in and destroy his enemies quickly, then get away as best he’s able.
    Abilities: Blademaster Traits (level 90), Critical Strike (PC level 1), Wind Walk (PC level 2), Mirror Image (PC level 3), Bladestorm (PC level 5).

    Blademaster Traits by class
    Hunter: Your ranged special attacks can now only be used when wielding a two-handed melee weapon or two one-handed melee weapons. Shots are renamed Strikes. Rapid Fire now increases melee attack speed instead.
    The rest:Being a blademaster does not hinder your abilities as a class, nor does it grant you any immediate benefit for taking the PC.

    Critical Strike
    As a level 1 Blademaster, when you score a critical hit with a melee attack, you reduce the target’s armor as though by applying 3 stacks of sunder armor (or similar).

    Wind Walk
    When you reach PC level 2 as a blademaster, you gain Wind Walk. Turning on Wind Walk starts you running. Until you enter combat or stop moving, you become ghostlike (somewhere between stealth and camouflage) and move at 150% speed. When Wind Walk ends, it triggers a 1 minute cooldown. Silence breaks and prevents Wind Walk.

    Mirror Image
    PC Level 3 teaches the Blademaster Mirror Image, which works in a manner similar to the mage spell.

    Bladestorm
    This ability, gained at PC level5, works just like the warrior talent. Warrior Blademasters therefore can gain the power twice (no shared cooldown) or take another level 60 talent.
    Last edited by Edlarel; 2013-01-30 at 09:36 PM.

  19. #19
    Currently if you need to tank on your rogue you got some CDs which allow you to in short term. If you want long term tank you need to use your alt or ask someone to tank for you (which increases dependancy on other players which increases social interaction). As a pure you (hopefully) knew before you rolled you could aid hybrids who prefer to tank/heal, and those hybrids who prefer that (e.g. a paladin tank, or a priest healer with 2 healing specs).

    Theorycrafters will figure out which one is best. If you opted for that one and cannot change it afterwards you'll have to reroll. If you can opt for another, you'll have to regrind, pay up, or both. The more options the player has, the more other players will ask them to play the one which is best. Fire mage in 4.2? Stupid (except Alysrazor). Every mage was arcane. Arcane in 4.3? Stupid (except Spine). Every mage was fire. That's in current incarnation of game (actually, previous expansion). Just like with Symbiosis it'll take a while till the dust settled (till the theorycrafting is done) but it only requires one fellow to work it out.

    I admit your system adds flavor, but if it was like you say from ground up instead of an afterthought, it makes a lot more sense.

    The Paragon levels in D3 was just to add more grind. The unlocks at level 50 in SWTOR, same. The class specialisation in SWTOR allowed them to have 8 stories instead of 16, while having 16 specs. What is the purpose of your idea?
    "When i am done with you, you won't trust your own mind."

  20. #20
    I'll give you that; and when I rolled rogue was when I first started playing and knew nothing about the game. Regardless, wanting new options shouldn't be a bad thing; especially when it doesn't stop the fun somebody else is having. Just because I want to use an option to tank doesn't mean my opinion is worth any less than the guy who doesn't.

    Yes, theorycrafters will do what they can to math out the best possible option. The goal of this idea, like the new talent trees, is to provide something of an alternative without adding direct power. The purpose? To add a means of generating characters like the multitudes of those players have been asking for and speculating about since before BC.

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