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Diversification in Allods Online

“Why are you writing about Allods Online so much Keen?!”

It’s the game that I’m currently playing each day, investing time in, and exploring during a beta phase.  I’m not in the STO beta.  I’ve told you guys about all the others games that I’m playing already.  I could write about Modern Warfare 2, Team Fortress 2, or Solitaire but that wouldn’t be any more interesting.  In a comment posted not too long ago, one of my readers said that they appreciate my tolerance for trying new things.  That was one of the best compliments I’ve had in a long time.  It’s also one of the driving forces behind this blog.  I do my best to at least try everything and then relay my thoughts to you guys.

To continue my Allods commentary, yesterday was a great day for the game.  There were several GM’s online and talking to the players.  Maybe they done it before, but I’ve never seen them communicating nor have I seen a real two-way interaction from anyone behind the game, even if it’s just a GM and not a developer.  +1 for communication.  They also added Waters of Life and Waters of Death to the auction house for 1 copper each and continued to do so many times throughout the day.  These waters are like DAOC respec stones.  You use them in order to reset your skill points, stat points, talent points, etc.  Up until this point it’s been nigh impossible to reset your stats.  Being a tester this has meant either picking a spec and sticking with it or creating new chars.  Since my goal was to reach the level cap in each beta phase, restarting constantly when I made a mistake was out of the question.

With stacks of waters I have been able to test many new specs for the Warden class.  There are three general ways to spec this class:  Caster, Melee, and Pet.  Additionally, each of these playstyles has within it a few different ways to specialize.   You can straight up make your pet powerful while taking defensive talents to survive while it wrecks people or you can make your pet powerful and make yourself a glass cannon on top of it.  You can take utility abilities or focus on purely offense/defense.  Casting has several specs as well.  Do you want to go straight nukes or place a totem down and send out whirlwinds to bring people to it?  Melee spec is one of the more straight forward specs, but on top of being melee you can choose several different styles in the pet tree.  There are 38 Rubies (or talent points) to invest in the talent grids and 45 points to put into the talent tree.  That’s a lot of points and a lot of customization.

Discovering this immense diversity in specs for my own class had me curious as to how others were fairing.  Turns out it’s fairly widespread that each class has many ways in which to spend points.  Paladins being spell based for damage or melee and 2h or 1h/shield, Warriors going tank spec or dps, Psionicists going stuns or damage, etc. etc.  While it may be a bit too far to say that “no two people will be the same”, it’s going to be a lot more diverse than talent point spending in WoW or LotRO.   This makes both PvP and PvE very interesting.  I went up against four different Wardens yesterday and each of them fought me differently.  I had to adapt once I figured out how they were going to fight me.  Usually I lost if I interpreted their spec wrong, but when I would come across them again I remembered their name and remembered “okay, this guy casts but if I drop all my cooldowns on him I can kill him quick” or “this guy has a ton of survivability and relies on outlasting me, so I kite him”.  You don’t see that too often in a Themepark-like game.   It’s actually closer to DAOC than WoW when it comes to PvP (just without the stealth classes perfing you).

As for myself, I tried two different builds yesterday (that actually worked for me — I tried several others).  I’m currently playing with a build that makes me a glass cannon nuker with utility and a pet that knocks down.  I have a spell that swarms the enemy with bees, causing them to run around confused for 12 seconds.  While dazed I am able to damage them and it won’t break the daze.  It’s on a cooldown but a great ability to use on someone and gain the upper hand.  Switching to this caster build meant dropping the claws in favor of a staff to accomodate my talents that say “when using a staff”.  After switching up my gear a bit in favor of perception now instead of a balance, I’m able to see big numbers and burst damage.  I also tried a pet spec that I’m working on adapting into a PvE/PvP leveling spec.  It focuses heavily on making my pet unstoppable and turning me into a target people would rather ignore because I’m hard to kill.  It factors in evasion, health stones, armor talents, and a few other surprises.  And yes, I’m now doing much better in PvP.

Overall, the field in PvP is diverse.  The Russian version was apparently patched and Scouts received a damage nerf.  In all honesty I can’t really speak to whether or not it was called for in the end game, but at level 30 they are able to deal out immense damage consistently vs. others doing it in bursts.  Death was certain to follow a Scout getting the jump on you.  Whether or not this will reach the NA version, I do not know.  Other than a few moments of emo rage when I’m killed in the blink of an eye or can’t chip any HP off the mega tank spec warrior, the game’s PvP balance is acceptable enough that I like to PvP and find myself successful.

If you guys have any questions about the PvP, PvE, or any questions about Allods go ahead and ask.

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Comments

  1. Waters of Life and Death are on auction house again for 1 cp.

  2. i would like your opinion on melee wardens in pvp havent heard much about them at all only info is the things you’ve posted so far.

  3. Melee wardens are a lot better than I thought they were while I was leveling up 23-26. Once I turned the corner and upgraded some of my gear I was able to put out significant damage in PvP. I also credit taking a talent where the pet finds a vulnerability and increases your next melee hit by 150% damage.

    The biggest problem with going melee early on is that you’re not able to get your damage and crit modifier talents early on.

    Getting close to your opponent is the key. If you can’t keep them in range of your claw attacks then you’re not doing anywhere near your potential. That’s why I take the Snake strike for snare and the pet knockdown ability. In range I could shred people.

    I may end up going melee at launch or at least in the end-game.

  4. office jerk says:
  5. Sleepysam says:

    Just chiming in that I very much enjoy reading about the exploration of a new game, please do keep it up.

  6. The thing that draws me most to this game is the talent and ruby system. I’m the type of person that might actually prefer theorycrafting to actually playing. I think it’s fairly common for all play styles to seem viable until you reach the “endgame” where the spec that is 5% more effective becomes known and sometimes necessary to use. The fact that this most viable spec (judging by forums) seems to differ pretty wildly even as one class levels combined with the heavy hand they’ve shown with some nerfs in the russian version has me worried that they might use the talent system and the waters as profit drivers.

    A separate issue, but likely the one that will decide whether or not I stay with the game is how group PvP pans out. I’m really worried about crowd control abuse. There is a silly amount of crowd control and I don’t think there are diminishing returns or immunity timers. In solo play this can be annoying but with organized groups it might be intolerable. Besides astral ships are there often 6v6 or 30v30 type fights? Do you see opportunities for good group synergy to provide benefits beyond each player playing their class well or pure numbers/levels/gear making the difference?

  7. What can you tell me about druids? How well do they fare in PvP? Solo/group PvE?

    Also, how is the PvE? Well-paced? Grindy? Fast? What other MMO would you compare it to? At what level can you start PvPing in the open world? Can you progress through PvP at all in terms of XP?

  8. @office jerk Ha, great article! :) Gonna have to blog about that!

    @Keen Don’t stress what topics you write about – I enjoy reading about Allods :)

  9. Who are the main tanks for groups and raids? Warriors or Paladins or are both viable?

  10. r u getting paid to promote this game? just wondering

  11. I, for one, have enjoyed reading about your Allods experiences. I’ve played the beta a little bit, but haven’t really had the time to get very far, so it’s cool to read about what others are seeing; you provide some particularly good details. (You too, Nollind.) Keep it up!

  12. @johnjohn: No, but wouldn’t that be great? I’ve always wanted to be paid to play and write about a game I enjoy.

  13. Thanks Xenovore. Here’s a few other things I’m noticing as well (as a 25th lvl Healer).

    If you’re trying to grind faction rep (it’s near the enemy camp in the middle of the Holy Lands map), it can be a pain, especially if high level enemies show up. The nice thing though is that if your group is only 25/26’rs and has at least 4 or 5 people in it, you can actually take down a single 29/30 enemy player by using repeated knockdowns (every person staggers their knockdown to relay one after the other). This to me is awesome because without those knockdowns we’d all be dead (i.e. 1 or 2 shotted). So kind of like Keen said, us lower levelers can be like bees hitting the big bear repeated until he’s dead. It’s still nice to have at least one friendly 30th lvl player in the group though, as we can work more effectively, especially when two 30th lvl enemies show up.

    With regards to avoiding knockdowns or CC, I find it’s all about hitting first with your CC/knockdowns and utilizing your immunity bubbles if you have them. Not sure about other classes but I’ve just optimized my character to do heavy dmg with Heavenly Smite (4.5s cast time though), a lightning based attack that does an AOE blast, and I’m finding it amazing, especially in PvP. This allows me to hit a large enemy group and keep them from doing CCs to us. So if I can, I pop my 12 second immunity bubble first and start letting off my AOE blasts. I can usually get 2 or 3 off before my bubble runs out. Hopefully enough time for others to AOE at the same time and take them out. Best of all, this build is crit optimized, so when I can boost my luck up (it’s only 5% now), I should be critting for at least 2 or 3k (as I hit 1.2k normally) or maybe even more because I’ve taken talent grids that will boost my crit dmg by 100% more than usual.

    Last but not least, by the time I get to 28th lvl, my Perpetual Healing will be unfrickenbelievable due to talent grid bonuses. Should really help a ton for warriors, especially if I can drop it on them before they rush into battle. Right now, I just find it tough because a lot of the warriors I’m healing are higher level than me and it’s helps but not enough (especially if a 30th lvl enemy is hitting them).

  14. I’m hearing stunlocks are close to achievable with some classes/specs, especially with psionicists with the right talents/ruby points. Probably have to nerf that bit if true :P

    Thanks for sending in the Allods updates, Keen.

  15. @Keen . Yes, indeed it would be great lol

  16. Gankatron says:

    You are coming off defensive. It is your blog, something that you obviously devote a lot of time to, talk about Allods all you want. Not every article needs to be a prophetic statement on how to save the field of MMORPGs.
    So you get to make water which you can sell? I hate that, I was so fed up with people wanting free water from my mage in WoW. I think that it should only be consumable by wardens, even more specifically by wardens who spec’d to be able to make it; it is a warden spell after all why should they be able to transfer that spell ability to other classes/specs, unless I am misinterpreting this…

  17. No actually this is Water that respecs your talents. It’s not like water you drink. :P

    It’s like finding an item in-game to let you reset talents.

  18. Do healers, Paladins, and Summoners all heal well during the game? Do they have any strengths? (I’ve enjoyed all the Allods posts)

  19. Healers and Summoners heal well when spec’d for healing. Paladins are not healers of others, to my knowledge.

  20. Boerewors says:

    Unsure if this has been asked before… can you level without PVP at all? I enjoy PVE and NOT PVP. Can I still enjoy this game and just do PVE?

  21. Good to see you are still going strong in Allods.

    Since I got into Beta I messed up my Summoners spec too but managed to deal with it. I havent logged on in a few days due to being in another beta but im interested in respeccing and trying other things.

    Good to hear that PvP is going better for you, you say it feels a lot more like DAoC (my all time fave mmo) do you think that the astral combat will continue this feeling?

  22. Thanks

  23. @Keen/anyone interested
    Regarding Paladin healing, I hit lvl 26 today with my Paladin and I changed up my talents a bit to a more dps/heal spec. My conclusion so far is that a Paladin could be a pretty effective healer in game we have a lot of AoE heal potential and, are still able to do a decent amount of damage. They would be hard pressed to be a “main” healer for groups though. If you combine a properly spec’d dps/healing Paladin with a good Summoner or Priest though I don’t think you’d hurt for heals at all. A Paladin might be capable of solo healing at end game with the right gear/talents but it would be pretty difficult I’d think.

  24. @Boerewors

    Not really. Once you hit the 22-23 level then you go to an area that is a PvP area where you have to complete PvE quests. But there is always a chance that you will be jumped by someone if you’re not paying attention.

    On a side note as well: There will be no PvE servers like what is in WoW. Once you head to the Holy Lands your PvP flag goes active.

  25. Dan: If you want to be able to solo level well as a healing class (especially when doing quests in the PvP area of the Holy Lands), you’ll probably want a spec that is roughly 80% dmg and 20% heals. This doesn’t mean you couldn’t choose an 80% heal and 20% dmg spec but if you do so, you’re leveling experience will probably be extremely slow, even though you may be almost impossible to kill. For me, my talent ratio is about 65% dmg, 15% CC, and 20% heals.

    Two primary strengths I’m noticing (with Healers anyways) are there CC abilities and DoT/HoT abilities. As I noted in a previous comment, my Heavenly Smite ability is great for doing an AOE knockdown (3s stun). So even putting just 1 point in it is worthwhile, as it’s a great opening shot when doing PvE or PvP. My DoT called Cleansing Flame and HoT called Perpetual Healing can both be boosted to do amazing dmg / heals over time as well, particularly if you further boost them with your talent grid. For example, by 12th level, you could add an extra 45% dmg/heals to both of these abilities (by allocating 3 rubies to your talent grid) which is pretty amazing, not only for yourself when solo leveling but also when doing PvP. Best of all, since they are instacast, they are fire and forget.

    The only people you really have to babysit in terms of heals are warriors and pallys since they have so many bloody hit points. But again by dropping your Perpetual Healing HoT on them first, you can then dramatically boost your healing rate on them by then following it up with successive casted heals using Devout Healing.

    BTW note that Healers are primed for single target healing while Summoners are better at group heals. This is why I like the Perpetual Healing HoT though because it lets me quickly rotate, dropping them on various people, and then switch back to healing the warrior / pally tanks with my Devout Healing.

    Finally note that the Healer class can get access to an AOE-like “party” heal ability but it requires dropping about five points in your talent grid to get it. It has a very amazing visual effect for it though that I’ve seen can be used for psychological effect on the enemy within PvP. In effect, it’s so huge a visual, that I’ve seen some enemies stop in the tracks when approaching and take a few steps back.

  26. Dan: Sorry should have clarified further about my talent ratio allocation. When I say my current build has only 15% of my talent points allocated to heals, it doesn’t mean all my heals suck. It just means I can really only choose one healing talent to specialize within (i.e. boost it to the highest Rank 3). For me, that’s Perpetual Healing because I find it the most versatile and easiest to apply during combat.

  27. @Boerewors: There comes a time when you’re faced with PvP. Level 23+ you start sharing zones and can be attacked at any time by the opposite faction.

    @Borgio: It would be a complete guess at this point if the Astral ships will feel like DAOC’s style of PvP. Making a complete guess here based on what I’ve heard and seen in videos and on paper, I think Astral ship combat will feel different than anything I’ve done in PvP. Real time ship combat with these mechanics has not yet been done in a MMO.

  28. Buddydude says:

    When it comes down to it, how do Summoners stack up as a designated group healer? If I roll summoner and my friends consist of 1 tank and the rest straight DPS, will we be able to tackle the non-raid instances and other PvE content? Or will we all be wishing that I was a “healer” class?

  29. I’ve heard a few comment that the Astral ship combat feels like Pirates of the Burning Seas or Puzzle Pirates. I’ve never played either of those games, but they seem to be well liked by those who play. I have high hopes for Astral Combat, it won’t make or break the game for me but it is the most anticipated feature of the game for me by far.

  30. @Buddyydude
    From waht I’ve seen the Summoner’s in my groups so far have been fairly capable of main healing. I’m not familiar with their talent tree enough to make an educated guess but I’d wager that they have some abilities there that would allow them to main heal. I’m sure they could handle the main healing if they have a few other support healing classes around (Paladin, Warden, etc).

  31. Buddydude says:

    …and can your character get a lot of moves?

    Compare something like WoW to something like AoC (put aside your feelings towards each game for a sec). At the end game of WoW, I felt like I had a large set of moves, some were my bread and butter, some were very situational. In AoC, I remember hitting the 20s, it seemed like I stopped getting new moves, and when I went to the wiki it looked like that was really it. From then on it was just higher levels of the same moves and combos.

    So how does Allods stack up in that regard?

  32. killlergnomie says:

    I love the skill system/talent system in this game. It retains just enough uniqueness that sets it apart from other games. Your skills sorta work like WoW talents (there are tiers) and you are not auto given any skills except the first 3. So unlike WoW, you do not have to take all your base abilities. You choose what you want to take by distributing your points. Each skill has 3 ranks (1st rank = 1 skill pt, 2nd rank = 2, etc….) so it is left up to you how you want to expand your skills. I would say, overall, it more resembles WoW than AoC but it is unqiue from both games.

    Your 3 talent trees also contain 2 skills each, which you can choose to get or ignore. The majority of your talent abilities are passive.

  33. I think it’s different for every class as far as the number of abilities you can get. Compared to WoW and AoC Allods certainly has less base abilities (you only get 3 base abilities and a base clas ability specific to your class via a quest), but where (in my opinion) it has those games beat is in specialization. As a summoner you could be entirely focused on healing, direct damage, dot’s, pet’s or a mix and match style of any of those roles. There are 16 abilities in the Summoner’s talent tree and you can have all of them if you’d like, and there are also (if I count right) 5 abilities in the talent grid that give you new spells. So that makes 21 total for the Summoner, but if you took tehm all you would miss out on upgrading other abilities you might like better. The beaty is in the versatility of the classes, every class has a fair mix of defensive, damage, healing, and cc abilities. Just figure out what you want from the class and enjoy!

  34. Also if you’re interested in checking out the talents here is a link to the english talent calculato.

    http://allodsbase.com/en/talents#_3hx1l5etdlxyy0

  35. Buddydude says:

    The customization is nice, but it sounds like it’s better to specialize in a few than be a jack-of-all-moves. And in theory it means a lot of diversity but don’t you guys think it’ll end up like most games where there’s a few optimal builds that most people use, diluting the customization?

  36. Buddydude says:

    Are there some good utility moves?

    Like in WoW, the warlock can summon, the mage can make food and water, the rogue can pick locks, the shaman can self-rez, the hunter can track, etc. That stuff is fun and interesting to me and a lot of MMOs seem to lack in that department.

  37. @buddy
    As far as cookie cutter builds like in WoW I haven’t seen any yet. Everyone has their own ideas and thoughts as to what works best or just what they like better. You’re not considered “gimped” if you skip a certain talent, of course this may come with time but as of now I think most anything played well is viable. I’ve tried out 3 builds so far with my Paladin and with each I felt more than capable in both pvp and pve. There are utility abilities some are learned through World Mysteries (quest chains that lead you through the main story) and some are abilities you’d aquire through the talent tree. The summoner for example has a self rez ability in Allods, and Warden’s can make potions for group members and put them directly into their inventory w/o having to trade with them. No class has a teleport to my knowledge, but I think the mage class can get one through a world mystery quest.

  38. Buddydude says:

    @Rybnik Thanks for all the info. I really like the sound of those World Mysteries.

  39. No problem happy to help out Buddy. It’s a wonderfully done game so far and really what do you have to loose trying it out, it’s f2p.

  40. Great answers, guys. Keen, are you going to be posting that video from the higher level instance you ran the other night? I am looking forward to it!

  41. Gankatron says:

    I guess I am confusing waters for potions; can other classes use the potions that a warden can spec to make?

  42. @Gankatron: Yes the warden has an ability called Aqua Vitae Concoction that creates a potion for the Warden in his inventory or he can create the potion in a party members inventory if they have bag space. This potion when used restores health and mana, and it’s strength is determined by you’re skill lvl in teh talent (1-3 skill lvl’s). I think the waters you are referring to are the Water of Life and Water of Death. Life resets you’re stat points and Death resets talent points, but can only be done at you’re trainer.

  43. Just wondering:
    At Higher lvls, are there more requested classes than others when grouping in both PvE and PvP? Is there a shortage of specific classes such as tanks, healers, ect?

  44. There has been a shortage of healers in the closed beta.

  45. “There has been a shortage of healers in the closed beta.”

    Keen: Do you mean shortage for dungeon running or pvp as well? Remember I asked in-game the other day if there were any high level healers and people spewed off a bunch of names, so I thought there wasn’t a shortage (as least in terms of PvP). Those healers that were named not on that much?

  46. “This potion when used restores health and mana, and it’s strength is determined by you’re skill lvl in teh talent (1-3 skill lvl’s).”

    Ahh! Do these potions look like beer mugs? And can you pass them to anyone, even if they aren’t in your group? When I’ve been questing in the Holy Lands, I sometimes find a beer mug in my inventory. I always thought it dropped off the mobs but now I’m wondering if a friendly gave me it to me while running by.

  47. @Nollind: There is a shortage overall of Healers. People named off something like four healers. Four Healers isn’t a lot. ;)

    The potion is determined by your skill level in Aqua Vitae, but also by your intelligence. Yes, it looks like a beer mug. All we have to do is target you and cast it and it appears in your inventory.

  48. “People named off something like four healers. Four Healers isn’t a lot.”

    I thought I heard five or six. If it was just four, that’s still decent in comparison (for PvP). For example, I’ve only seen maybe four to six 30th lvl warriors on a frequent basis in the middle over the past week. So four 30th level healers is a decent ratio in comparison. For scouts, I’ve seen maybe two or three at most, with Jayge being the most common. So again, with regards to the current active PvP population and engagement on a nightly basis, four would be a lot if they were fairly active (and I’m guessing they are not that active).

    If you’re talking PvE, ya that’s a different story. Four healers wouldn’t cut it at all for the variety of runs that people would want to do, especially since you said Blight requires at least two decent healers.

  49. randomguy says:

    I have a question about ruby purchase, I reached lev 10 and went to the warden trainer, (empire warden) I had 2gold and some silver and tried to buy a ruby and got the message, unable to do so.
    I have looked over the forums for hints or tips on what I am missing but cannot find anything except for builds with rubies. Would someone be so kind as point me in the right direction gently, thanks.

  50. Chances are you clicked it and already bought it. Hit N and go to your Talent grids. See if at the top it says you have a ruby.

  51. many thanks Keen for the swift reply.

  52. shockblaster says:

    Hi i am a low lvl warden:P around 7 on EU servers and from my expirience form 2-3 years playing wow i was interested about specs builds etc. like i did at wow:P so i founded a calculator and i made a spec i can say pvp spec and i want your opinion or edits :) thx LINK:http://allodsbase.com/en/talents#_31x1svr39lx41goy3vib3kp3uy211o430