I do know what you guys are thinking: “Yet another Runemaster suggestion? Sigh.”, but please read this through before commenting about the Runemaster idea posed in this thread.
Runemasters are monk-like arcane spellcaster and melee fighters who empower themselves with magical energies by inscribing runes onto their bodies. The Runemaster is a free spirit, more at home in the wild than in the city. The Runemaster is a mystic who sees the power of ley lines. Moreover, those who study runes understand that these are not simply symbols of power - they are the power. The Runemaster seeks to become one with the land, but not in the fashion of Druids. Rather, the Runemaster desires to become a microcosm of the land, seeking to overlay his body with runes in the same fashion that the land itself is overlaid with patterns of ley lines.
He merges brute strength with arcane magic, covering his body with mystic tattoos and often imbuing them with magical energies to increase his skill in hand-to-hand combat. While a Runemaster shuns armor, this is more to prevent hindrances to inscribing his runes than to demonstrate his subtlety and finesse with unarmed strikes. Quite to the contrary, a Runemaster prefers to get in the face of his enemies. Using little trickery or subterfuge, the Runemaster takes down foes with toe-to-toe, all-out assaults, hammering them with tattooed fists and feet brimming with arcane power. Runic magic is considered primitive yet complex by most other races.
Runemasters fill many roles. They are adept melee combatants. They possess runes to enhance themselves and their allies, as well as to ward certain areas and otherwise make life difficult for their opponents.source: wowpedia.org
So, why a Runemaster?
First of all, the Runemaster is one of the core classes of the Warcraft RPG. Pretty much every other core class, apart from the Witch Doctor, the Scout and the Tinker, have been incorporated in World of Warcraft. Out of these classes not yet incorporated, I felt that the Runemaster has the most potential for a new class – it’s like a white sheet, waiting to be colored in.
It seems to be quite high in demand, while some other long for a Monk class. These people probably don’t know that the Runemaster actually is WoW’s Monk class, as said in WRPG54. The Monk was supposed to not have the WoW ‘feel’ to it, and thus they created the Runemaster.
I personally believe that the Runemaster could be incorporated with a play style that attracts many, and could get a nice lore that attracts many others.
The world is in pain. With the rise of Deathwing, Azeroth has suffered. Shaman from all around the world gather with the Earthen Ring, desperately trying to heal the wounds caused by the Shattering. However, even their combined efforts don’t seem to be enough, and the world seems to go lost. Then, a new order rises. A long-lost order, only kept alive by outcast of various races, begins to show their face again.
These outcasts show the citizens of Azeroth that one does not need to study the elements for too much time to save Azeroth. Instead, they use their own bodies as vessels for the world to radiate it’s pain. Inscribing their bodies with ancient symbols, they manage to speak with the world of Azeroth, hoping to relieve it from its pain, and get it in balance once again.
As most of the current order members are Tauren and Dwarven, it’s mostly some desperate Tauren and Dwarves join the order at first. Impressed by their ability to speak with the world, people manage to get the news out to Stormwind and Orgrimmar. From that point onward, news spreads like fire, and people of all races join this new cause, to save the planet.
The Runemasters have been living everywhere across the planet, gathering in Northeron, Eastern Kingdoms, every year, discussing the current state of Azeroth. After they are done, most of the Runemasters leave again, walking the planet. Only some of the most experienced Runemasters, called Epic Runemasters, stay behind in Northeron, where young Runemasters may come to them, seeking for help.
How and where would you start:
You’d start at level one. Apparently, people didn’t like having the Death Knight starting at 55 that much, so the Runemaster starts at level one, rather than a higher level.
The Runemaster starting zone gets you to about level 10, after which you will take the path you’d take as any other class would take.
The first thing you see when you create your Runemaster is your character, in the middle of a crowd, listening to one of the epic Runemasters. The Runemaster thanks you all for coming, and welcomes you in the Runemaster community.
After he’s done, he’ll hand you your first quest, where you should talk to one of the other epic Runemasters. This Runemaster has a speech that differs for every race. Gnomes get thanked for their curiosity, Undead get the surprised “I never thought you’d ever wake up again!”, and Dwarves get a little talk about how they’ve been introduced by one of the epic Runemasters, who remembered you from their youth. For every race, there would be a little introduction as to why they’ve became new Runemaster, so that it all makes sense.
You get some quests, introducing the playstyle of the Runemaster, while further fleshing out the feel of Runemasters.
Once you’ve finished the questlines, you should be about level 10, and you’re being sent to the council of Three Hammers or Baine Bloodhoof, asking them for help, as the small amount of Runemasters will not be able to save the planet by themselves. These racial leaders will send agree helping you, but you will also be sent through to the faction leaders, Varian or Garrosh, as the Alliance and the Horde are much more powerful than just the Dwarves and the Tauren.
After completing the storyline, you can follow the path a Human or Dwarf would take for Alliance, and the path am Orc or Tauren would take for Horde, as you have those flight paths.
Example of quests:
Handed out by a Forsaken Runemaster.
“There’s nothing as important to balance as life and death. I too was Human once, until Arthas decided to play the boss of life and death. We were unfortunate to gather here just as Arthas launched his assault on Quel’Thalas. Some of us were brutally slaughtered, forced to fight those that once were our allies. Thankfully, we found new allies in a group of Blood Elves fleeing from Silvermoon. Together, we managed to overcome the Scourge forces.
But look what they did to me. Life’s balance – completely off. I am here now, I still serve a purpose.
There’s still undead walking around in the east, their mind completely numb. With Arthas dead, we can finally get rid of these ghouls safely. Restore life’s balance. Kill them.
Kill X Ghouls.”
Handed out by a Blood Elf Runemaster.
“As hard as I tried, I still long for a shot of Arcane. Please help me out here.
Hit me with an Arcane Flash.”
Melee Physical/Magical DPS – Martial Arts tree
Ranged Magical DPS – Mystic tree
Healer – Spiritual tree
Much like the Death Knight can be seen as a mix between the Warrior and Warlock, it’s the Runemaster that could be seen as a mix between various existing classes too, combining different aspects of the Combat Rogue, the Shaman, the Arcane Mage, the Discipline Priest and the Paladin. In the end it would get his very own feel, without feeling like it’s actually made out of different classes.
- The Runemaster dares sacrificing himself to save others. The Runemaster comes with a variety of healing moves, some of which damage the Runemaster in some way.
- Imbibing various runes in his body for self-buffing, the Runemaster has four ‘slots’ (chest, legs, arms and wrists) where he can carve runes in his body.
- Is able to engage in battle using three different combat styles.
- Utilizes a new class mechanic, called aggression.
- Wearing cloth, this class has a high-risk, high-reward feel to it.
Class perk 4 - The thing called Aggression:
It’s what the Runemaster uses as his resource. The Runemaster seeks balance in life, in the nature and thus in the way they would engage in battle. In a way, it would work as a mix between rage and mana. Starting at 50-50, most offensive moves and some buffs would lower the aggression, and most defensive moves and some buffs would heighten the aggression. There wouldn’t be a penalty for having a really high or low aggression, but you wouldn’t be able to use certain moves when it’s too high or low.
Aggression would slowly move back to 50-50 out of combat.
Class perk 3 – Combat styles:
This class perk is mostly noticed by the Martial Combat talent tree. Being able to battle in three different ways, the Runemaster’s Combat Style System works a bit like the Stances system for Warriors.
Split up in the options Fist– Open Hand – Weaponry, each of the different styles behaves differently. Most of the talents in the Martial tree focus on Fist and Open Hand, while most of the offensive moves for the Mystic tree focus on the Weaponry.
As said, different Combat styles are most important for the Martial tree, as they would probably switch during battle between different styles. Both the Spiritual tree and the Mystic tree will spend most time in the Weaponry style.
- The Open Hand style is mostly based around stunning, interrupting and slowing the opponent’s attack.
- The Fist Combat style revolves around doing as much damage.
- The Weaponry style is based on non-direct combat damage and utility moves.
Class perk 2 – Runes:
As said before, the Runemaster uses runes to power himself. This works very different from the Death Knight’s rune system though, as their runes are used for abilities, while the runes a Runemaster would use buff the capabilities of the Runemaster.
Divided in four body parts, the Runemaster’s runes would be closer to a mix between the Shaman’s Totems and the Paladin’s Auras. Each of the runes would give the Runemaster a buff that would be useful for a particular specialization, but hardly that useful for others.
Inscribing your body with runes will take 5 seconds per rune, at the cost of X% of your health. This would be needed to keep everyone in their assigned role, and not runedancing (much like stance dancing for Warriors). Being able to runedance would have serious consequences in PvP – people would pull as a caster, then quickly swap to melee, and inscribe healer runes when low on health.
- Rune of the Oak’s Rings - Armor increased by X%
- Rune of the Mangrove Roots - Healing done to yourself increased by X% and to friendly targets by 2*X%
- Rune of the Eagle’s Eye – Increases the range of your ranged attacks by 10 yards
- Rune of the Wild – Increases your haste by X%
- Rune of Star’s Light – Magical damage done to you is decreased by X%
- Rune of Flowing Water – Movement speed increased by X%. Does not stack with speed increases caused by mounts.
- Rune of Sparks – Decreases the time immobilization or movement speed reduction effects last by 50%
- Rune of the Mountain – Increases your intellect by X%
- Rune of Heated Coals – Strength increased by x%
- Rune of the Wolf’s Paw – Your auto-attacks have a chance to trigger an extra, instant auto-hit.
The Martial Arts tree revolves around dealing close-ranged, melee damage. Some attacks are physical, but some are imbued with Arcane power. The talent tree is split in two main directions, Open Hand and Fist Combat, both having their own style. Open Hand focuses on quick, weaker attacks and annoying the opponent, while Fist Combat could be considered a bit more risky, with less defensive cooldowns, but a larger damage output.
Ability: Slam (Fist Combat).
Deals a moderate amount of damage. Filler move.Ability: Slam (Open Hand Combat):
Interrupts your target’s spell casting.Ability: Force Palm.
Over the time of 1.5 seconds, all hostile targets in front of you are pushed back 15 feet.Ability: Living Target.
Taunts the target to attack you, but has no effect if the target is already attacking you. 3 second duration.Talent: Realization.
Requires no points in Relaxation
Your base aggression is 10/20 points higher. (It would be 70-30 base when you have put two points in this talent).Talent: Madness.
Requires two points in Realization
Your abilities use X% less aggression.Talent: Neck Shot.
Requires Open Hand Combat
Silences your target for 5 seconds.
As some Runemasters follow the globe’s pain more than others, it’s not unusual for those to try and heal the world using their own bodies as Azeroth’s exhaust. These Spiritual Runemasters are willing to hurt themselves for the sake of the causes they believe in.
Over the duration of X seconds, your aggression is reset to its standard values.Ability: Energy Burst.
Heals a friend for X damage, but hurts you for Y% of your health. Cannot be cast on self.Ability: Relieve Earth.
At the cost of 2% of your health per second, all healing done to friendly targets is increased by X%. Gives you the Worn Out debuff, which prevents you from using Relieve Earth again for the next Y minutes.Ability: Roar of Sacrifice.
Using all the energy you have left in you, you heal your target for the amount of health you have left. You die. Cannot be cast on self.Talent: Relaxation.
Requires no points in Realization
Your base aggression is 10/20 points lower. (It would be 30-70 base when you have put two points in this talent).Talent: Calm Mind.
Requires two points in Relaxation
Your abilities use X% less aggression.Talent: Roar’s Echo.
Your Roar of Sacrifice ability also heals the 1/2 target(s) nearest to your target for 50% of the amount healed.
The Mystic Runemaster is the Runemaster that decided to study the Arcane a bit more. Becoming a master of using the energy flowing around Azeroth, the Mystic utilizes Ley Lines to enhance his spell powers.
Ability: Bind Ley.
Teleports you back to Northeron. If you are in Northeron, you will be teleported back to the place you last used Bind Ley. Cannot be used in Battlegrounds and Arenas.Ability: Arcane Flash.
Filler cast. Quick cast, average damage.Ability: Arcane Flux.
Your target becomes a force disrupting the Ley Lines of the World. All Arcane attacks done to this target deal X% less damage, but deal Y% damage to all hostile targets within 10 feet of the target affected by Arcane Flux.Ability: Magnetic Pull.
Pulls all hostile targets within 20 yards toward the target affected by Arcane Flux.Talent: Temporal Ley.
Summons a temporary Ley Line on the ground. Every Arcane attack that is cast that follows the Ley Line deals X% more damage. Lasts Y seconds.
Stats and their effect on the Martial Arts Runemaster:
Stamina: Increases your health.
Strength: Increases your attack power.
Agility: Increases your chance to dodge and your melee critical hit chance.
Intellect: Increases your spell power and spell critical hit chance.
Spirit: Decreases the amount of aggression you need for attacks.
The PvE Martial Arts Runemaster would want to stack Strength and Agility.
The PvE Mystic Runemaster would want to stack Intellect, and Spirit to a lesser extent.
The PvE Spiritual Runemaster would want to stack Intellect and Spirit.
In PvP, Stamina will have a bigger role, obviously.
Any secondary stat, such as Haste, Mastery, Hit, Crit and the likes would vary, much like any other class.
Races able to be Runemaster:
All. While I don’t envision the Runemaster to be a ‘Hero Class’, explained in this thread, I do envision them to be able to be all races. Let me explain why, using a quote and my own additions:
Runemasters may be found in either the Horde or the Alliance. Thought the arts of the Runemaster originated among the ancient Tauren, these techniques have been adopted by many races. After the Tauren, Dwarves are the most likely to practice the Runemaster's art, with Night Elves, Orcs and Trolls making up a small population as well. Rare is the Human Runemaster, and Dwarven mentors teach almost all of them.source: wowpedia.orgLet’s compile a list of the races available in World of Warcraft, ordered alphabetically, with explanations why they can be Runemasters.
- Blood Elf – Eramas Brightblaze, one of the NPCs that can be found near Priestess Delrissa, Magister’s Terrace, is believed to be a Runemaster. This might show that there are already Blood Elves picking up the ways of the Runemaster. Let me try to put in a bit of self-written lore in here:
As Arthas launched his assault on Quel-Thalas, many Blood Elves fell, but some managed to flee. Following the coastline, these Blood Elves finally ended up in Northeron. Aiding the Runemasters in their battle against the few forces Arthas sent west, the new alliance between the Runemasters and the Blood Elves proved to be victorious. Thankful towards the Runemasters, the Blood Elves agreed to stay with the Runemasters, learning their ways.
- Draenei – There are various reasons that the Draenei would become Runemasters. Anxious of having to leave yet another planet, some Draenei that might have earlier followed the Light would pick up a new way to save their new planet. With their natural enemies, the Orcs, picking up new ways of combat, the Draenei might want to learn the same ways of battle, to know what they’re up against.
- Dwarf – Originating from the Earthen, the Dwarves are the first race ever to learn the ways of the Runemaster. Forgetting it at a certain point, only to find it again in recenter times.
- Gnome – The Gnomes are a curious race by nature, and having their best friends being Runemasters, the Gnomes could get too curious, and try it out themselves. Also, with the discovery that the Gnomes indeed are created by the titans, their relation with the world of Azeroth could’ve grown big enough to pick up the path of the Runemaster.
- Goblin – Driven by greed, the Goblin feel that the world of Azeroth hasn’t been completely exploited yet. Not all minerals haven’t been harvested yet. Attempting to save the planet to exploit it later on, some Goblins decided to become a Runemaster. Others have been forced (or bribed) into the path of the Runemaster by their corrupt trade princes.
- Human – Quoted in the wowpedia article.
- Night Elf – Quoted in the wowpedia article.
- Orc – Quoted in the wowpedia article.
- Tauren – The 'new' original Runemasters. If these guys couldn’t be Runemasters, no-one should be able to.
- Troll – Quoted in the wowpedia article.
- Undead – The Forsaken once were Human. The Undead Runemasters are no different. They, however, never aligned with the Forsaken before becoming Runemasters. Generally, Undead don’t care much for the world of the living. Playable Forsaken Runemasters used to be Human Runemasters, staying in Notheron, who died and got resurrected when Arthas moved through Lordaeron towards Quel’Thalas. Not directly dying to the forces moving along with Arthas, but rather the ones left behind, these Human Runemasters were lucky enough to be far away enough to break free of Arthas’ will directly, as his powers dropped slightly upon besieging Silvermoon. Runemasters, not shunning any race, did not care for these Undead Runemasters, and were accepted much like any other race fighting for the same cause.
- Worgen – Once Human, the Worgen might already be able to be a Runemaster, from the time before their lockdown. Younger generations of Gilnean, having suffered from the disastrous occurrences of the shattering already, hope to prevent people of other races from the agony they had to go through themselves. Worgen have been portrayed as feral as of yet, this expansion could shine light on their nobler side, as well.
Q & A (or statements and replies, for that matter):
Q. This idea sucks.
A. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but please, elaborate why you think it’s a bad idea.
Q. You suck.
A. Thank you.
Q. This has been brought up way too often.
A. I absolutely agree, and for that matter, I hope most people will actually take the time to read all this through. Too many silly suggestions, let’s hope people take this one seriously.
Q. This looks too much like …
A. As for classes, I hope and do believe that the Runemaster differentiates itself enough from every other class.
A. If you mean that this idea is too close to other people’s ideas, let me tell you that all of the ideas in this thread come from my personal head. Also, to quote Gsusnme in the Warden thread:
Q. The Runemaster attunes himself to the planet – how does he differ from Druids or Shamans?I have nothing to GAIN from "stealing" an idea, as I am not getting paid for this, it's simply for fun and the whole "What-If" factor.
A. The Druid attunes himself to the nature, the life that covers the planet. Animals, plants, they are what matters to the Druid. The Shaman attunes himself to the elements of the planet.
The Runemaster, however, attunes himself to so-called Ley Lines covering the globe. These Ley Lines are like Azeroth’s blood veins, with Arcane magic flowing through them as the vein’s blood. Using runes inscribed on his body, he manages to get his power from these veins – and power it in return too, if needed.
Q. Runemasters were supposed to be WoW’s Monks, but there’s Argent Monks and Scarlet Monks now too, for example. Why not just create the Monk class?
A. Correct. However, a monk is generally associated with the Church, or the Light, to follow WoW terms. Having them follow the Light (or any other belief) would leave out some races, and that’s not what I imagine. Just like the Death Knight, I would want this to be for all races. Making them fight for something else than a true belief, such as the world of Azeroth, would leave much more room to incorporate all classes. Also, I think the Runemaster concept is the Monk concept 2.0, where he has much more flavor than just a righteous melee fighter.
Q. Runemasters wear Cloth, making it 4 clothies, against 2 leather, 2 mail, and 3 plate. Imbalance?
A. Lorewise, Runemasters fight with the least armor possible. Having them in an armor set higher than cloth wouldn’t make that much sense from that perspective. Also, it’s not quite imbalance if you look at it from a different perspective – itemization.
1. Cloth – 2, Ranged DPS, Healing
2. Leather – 4, Melee DPS, Ranged DPS, Healing, Tanking
3. Mail – 4, Melee DPS, Ranged DPS, Healing
4. Plate – 3, Melee DPS, Healing, Tanking
You see how Cloth is actually the one with the least itemization options? Add in the Melee spec of the Runemaster, and it would actually be spread pretty even across the board.
Q. Didn’t they already incorporate some parts of the Runemaster in the Death Knight?
A. Yes, they said they did. I, however, find it really hard to actually find those parts in the Death Knight’s design, apart from their Runic system. I believe I did find a way to make runes still very important for the Runemaster, while still making it very different from the Death Knight.
Q. What color options do we have left for the class (like the Death Knight is red, the Druid orange and the Warrior brown)?
A. Most class colors so far have been light shades of colors, apart from the Death Knight and the Shaman, which are a darker shade of red and blue, respectively. The Runemaster could use a darker color green, such as #4c9e50, or 67-158-80. It’s still readable on darker backgrounds, while still different from Hunter green. Another option is a light shade of grey, such as c0c0c0 or 192-192-192, also known as silver by web designers. Of course, these are just options, many others are possible. My personal favorite, though, is the darker shade of green.
Q. A Hero Class starting at level 1, is that even a Hero Class?
A. Maybe not. But quite a lot of people felt that the Death Knight is cheating by starting at 55. You might actually be better of seeing this just as a class idea, rather than a Hero Class.
Q. Why Northeron?
A. Northeron is one of the very few regions of Azeroth that is currently unused. It used to house the Wildhammer Dwarves, which makes it a great place for Runemasters – Dwarves are one of the original Runemasters, after all.
There are also Elven ruins, which, apart from possible Dwarven structures left there, could get twisted in such a way that the Runemasters used these advanced architectures as tools to actually review the Arcane powers that flow through Azeroth.
Last but not least, it’s close in proximity to the Blood Elves and the Undead areas. These two races are probably the hardest (along with Gnomes, Goblins and Worgen) to incorporate in the Runemaster lore.
Q. Where would the class trainers be?
A. There would be apprentice trainers in Stormwind, Ironforge, Orgrimmar and Thunderbluff. These apprentice trainers would be able to help you training abilities up to level 30 or 40. After that point, you’ll need to use your Bind Ley ability, sending you back to Northeron for further training.
Q. What does NIH?
A. Need ideas here. Any help would be nice
- Not too happy with the reasoning behind Gnome and Worgen Runemasters.
- Not happy with the starting story.
- Need to edit in more runes and abilities.
- Thank you for reading!