I have not done one of these in a long time, but I do hope to do more as time permits. We have a problem here on LotS where there is a tier of characters that are tremendously unbalanced from the rest. In my experience(feel free to share yours), it goes Sith combats > Jedi combats > Sith > combats > bounty hunters > everyone else. The aim of this dev diary is to present some of the ways we plan to address these issues and to open discussion on other ways to fix.
The biggest issue by far is the Force. Forcers far outstrip non-forcers in power levels, Sith more-so than Jedi. This is because the Force has traditionally been added on top of a character's normal class. My solution to this is to introduce a number of additional classes that Force users MUST choose or opt to remove the Force from their character. These classes will more or less replace alignment and will not be able to be changed without expending 500 RPP. The current spells will be divided between these and the general Force class that we already have.
For light-siders, we will have Jedi Guardian, with combat buffs and attacks, Jedi Consular, with healing spells and similar abilities, and Jedi Sentinel which have a wide range of skills and spells that are more utilitarian, mostly non-combat. No membership in the Jedi Order is required.
For dark-siders, we will have Sith Warrior, the mirror of Jedi Guardian with powerful combat buffs and attacks, Sith Inquisitor, featuring a lot of the damage dealing spells, and Sith Alchemist, which will have several new spells: creating potions, poisons, and monsters. Likewise, these are open to all dark-siders, not just Sith.
The transition of current characters to the new system is not completely defined at the moment, but will see a lot of characters lose a significant amount of their current power. There will be RPP compensation for this.
For the other classes, we will be adding higher level skills to help bridge the gap between them and the mighty combat class, including fixes for currently broken hunter skills. I have had a lot of ideas thrown at me for these and I want them to keep coming, such as "uncanny dodge" for smugglers. Other such potential changes include a penalty to dodge for fighting 3+ attackers, to give a leadership main's mobs a chance.
Lastly, but definitely not least, is a proposed change to HP gains. Currently, every combat level up provides a gain between 25 and 25 + CON. The proposed change is to assign every class a hit dice(HD) and when a character increases his main class level, he would get an HP gain of 2*HD + CON. Current proposal for HD:
d10: bounty hunter, leadership, sith warrior, jedi guardian
d8: smuggler, jedi sentinel, sith alchemist
d6: pilot, slicer, jedi consular, sith inquisitor, diplomat, engineer
Using a human for example at max level:
d12: 3600-6600, avg 5100
d10: 3000-6000, avg 4500
d8: 2400-5400, avg 3900
d6: 1800-4800, avg 3300
Current human at various levels:
30: 750-1350, avg. 1050
60: 1500-2700, avg. 2100
90: 2250-4050, avg. 3150
120: 3000-5400, avg. 4200
150: 3750-6750, avg. 5250
As you can see, combat mains will have a comparable HP to the current system, but everyone else will be much more competitive. Again, there will be some pain with the transition, which we will compensate with RPP.
Now, this thread is open for discussion on the above topics as well as anything else that y'all can think of to help bring balance to our game.