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Companion 2.0 Soundroom

(XBOX)Vile Slanders

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I always try to be brief, but I inevitably always end up going out on a tangent. This post is probably no different: it's a think dump for players to drop suggestions regarding Companion 2.0. I have a number of ideas myself, which I will be including below.

Now, I'll be the first to admit that I know absolutely NOTHING about programming AI. Beyond stating that the current AI is terrible due to issues we should all be familiar with, I will leave AI programming in far more capable hands.

However, in terms of companion mechanics I have a number of suggestions. These will all be related to mod application, companion abilities, and companion infrastructure. I want to start with potentially the "biggest" idea, and that is addressing Beast Companion damage mods.

There is a bit of an issue with beast companions specifically, and that issue is only growing all the more severe with every other mainline update: Beast and Sentinels both have a total of 10 mod slots to utilize; because of sentinel weapons being reserved solely for damage mods, sentinels can devote the majority of their available mod slots to support, ability, & EHP mods; while Beast Companions have to use their base 10 mod capacity to accommodate damage, support, ability, & EHP mods; Sentinels end up having a total of 18 available mods slots; Beasts only have 10.

I believe that that the best way to resolve this issue is to introduce "Beast Weapons" , which function similarly to "Sentinel Weapons". Thematically, think of Beast Weapons as bangles or bracelets or artificial claw caps. Each Beast type has its own Beast Weapon. For example: Kubrows have an even split ISP Damage bracelet with higher status; Kavats have a primarily slash damage focused Crit bangle; Helminths have a Viral damage claw cap with a balance of crit/status and above average base damage. These weapons can be swapped between beast companions, so you could have a Kavat armed with a Helminth's claw cap, which would provide your Kavat with base Viral damage.

Current beast damage mods (Maul, Bite, Hunter Link, Hunter Recovery, Dual Status/Elemental mods, Swipe, Pounce, Sharpened Claws, Mecha Overdrive, & Strain Fever) will be transferred over to Beast Weapons. New Beast Weapon mods (Namely 90% Elemental damage mods & attack speed mods) should be introduced to promote build diversity. The transfer of companion damage Mods over to Beast weapons will permit for better optimization of Beast Companions by freeing up a considerable amount of mods slots for support, ability, & EHP mods.

Staying in line with Beast Companions for now, I'd like to propose the removal of stasis altogether. This is a terribly inconvenient system, particularly when swapping between Beast companions. There's no greater waste of time than swapping from an adarza to a smeeta, only to be forced into waiting for the stasis recovery/insertion animation to play out, before going back to the arsenal to equip the smeeta on all of the old adarza loadouts. I myself have 36 Loadout slots, more than 70% of them utilize Beast Companions. It takes me roughly FIFTEEN MINUTES to go through every loadout, and reaquip the companion I just swapped out of stasis. How much wasted time does this translate to in-game?

You can solo speed run roughly 10 Void Captures (10 Lith Relics) in fifteen minutes, loading screens accounted for. Why can't we just equip a different Beast companion to every individual loadout, like we currently can with sentinels? It would make companion maintenance so much less painful.The "stasis" option should be relegated to Beast Display in your Orbiter. The single pet outside of stasis is the model that wanders your ship; everything else awaits you in the loadout menu. This also means that we could have an aesthetic pet, such as a pup or kitten, that can wander our ship without preventing the usage of combat ready pets.

Of course, if we get rid of stasis, what do we do with DNA stabilizers and pet Interaction? The answer is really simple: You disable both features. Kavats already have zero interaction stat bonus/debuff. Make it universal, and do away with DNA degradation while you're at it. I love the idea of an organic pet, but these systems do not ingratiate. I'm going to pet my Kubrow, because I want to pet my virtual dog; incentivizing me to pet my Kubrow for a damage bonus just cheapens the immersion.

Alternatively, if DE decides to maintain the organic system, make the wandering pet outside of stasis a representative of the kenals' morale & health. For every pet death in mission, every single pet's morale decreases; every pat on the wandering pet's head increases every pet's morale; every 24 hours decreases every pet's max health by 5%; a single DNA stabilizer restores gene stability to every single pet.

That's pretty much the root of Beast Companions covered, now onto Sentinels.

Moas pretty well rendered these guys obsolete. Now you can have both the EHP and revival of a Pet with Sentinel utility on one companion. None of the drawbacks, all of the benefits. How do we restore sentinels as a competitive option? That's fairly simple: You know how Moas will soon be able to swap between Sentinel and Pet EHP mods? Make that interchangeability universal for ALL companions. That way, a class cannon Mag can still run a fairly bulky Adarza; Carrier Prime won't be unique among sentinels for his ability to tolerate trauma.

Medi-pet Kit should also be made universal, so that Sentinels can passively heal themselves overtime; as for Medi-pet Kit's Bleedout Reduction applying to Sentinels? Make it so that when Medi-pet Kit is equipped on a sentinel, it adds one self revive to the sentinel's total counter. This single self revive will stack with Regen and Primed Regen, affording your sentinel with a bit more sustainability.

Next, we need to discuss Sentinel Weapon Damage: it's pathetic. While I'm not suggesting that sentinel damage needs to be ridiculously high, it needs to be at least comparable to mid-meta Secondary DPS. I know that DE doesn't want a sentinel that's so powerful that it promotes AFK playstyles; altering the AI to keep pace with player aggression would be a sound a means to alleviate this problem. If the player isn't moving/attacking, then the sentinel will cease attacking. If the player is consistently moving/attacking, then the sentinel will consistently attack. Problem solved.

I highly recommend an overhaul of all Companion weapons; boosting the base damage, Crit, & status chance on ALL of them. One potential alteration I thought of would be increasing the Sweeper Prime's base status chance to 46%, but decreasing its pellet count to just 3. That way, you could easily mod for 100% status chance of a specific elemental status effect (at a base of 46%, you'd only need 2 dual status/element mods to achieve 100% status chance; so you could eliminate unwanted damage types from skewing status proc ratios), but by decreasing the pellet count to 3, the Sweeper Prime could only proc 3 status effects per shot without multishot. The base Sweeper would pack 30% status chance and 3 pellets, so it could still achieve 100% status chance with 4 Dual status/elemental mods.

I think we've all heard of the running joke that is the Vulcax: a Sentinel weapon that thematically & mechanically resembles the Opticor (It even shares the Opticor's MR14 acquisition gate), but in terms of DPS, it's completely outclassed by the Kraken to a hilarious degree. Why must all Sentinel weapons be so terrible?

Alright, enough with Companion Damage; let's move onto a couple of companion ability tweaks. Starting with Deathcube's Vaporize.

  • Deathcube's Vaporize: Deathcube targets an enemy at low health, and discharges a damaging ray over 4 seconds, dealing 300% Sentinel Weapon damage per second. If the target's health is reduced to 35% or less during the 4 second burst, they are instantly killed, dealing 45% of their maximum health as radiation damage in an 8m explosive radius. This ability has a 30 second cooldown between uses.

Deathcube is the only companion in the game whose very name is synonymous with "Lethal Rhombus" and "Box of Death".  So let's give him the hardware required to meet the implication of his title. This particular adaptation to Vaporize would give Deathcube a damage source that scales with enemy EHP; something that is quickly becoming the norm on new Warframes. The 30 second cooldown would prevent Vaporize from ever becoming overpowered through sustained use. It's a handy tool that's worth a mod slot on your sentinel's config, but it won't be establishing metas anytime soon.

  • Chesa Kubrow's Retrieve: Targets hit by thrown weapons (Spearguns/Glaives) and thrown weapon effects are marked. Marked enemies receive 500% additional damage from the Chesa's attacks; marked enemies killed by the Chesa have 100% higher chance of dropping items. Enemies marked by thrown weapons are specifically targeted by the Chesa.

Chesa got pooted on by the addition of the Fetch mod (Which is basically a much better version of Retrieve). Thematically, the Chesa is based on Labradors and Retrievers, which implies an ability that ties into item acquisition. Problem is, Smeeta's Charm already exists, which can double pickups & pull rare resources out of thin air. Using Djinn's Fatal Attraction/Machete Gazal synergy for inspiration, I thought of an original alteration that fits the Chesa's theme, while giving the community a bit more reason to run around with underused spearguns and glaives. I know that it is specific to a select few weapons, but the 500% increased Chesa Damage & the 100% item Drop Chance boost should make the Chesa worthwhile, which is something that the Chesa hasn't been since it was first introduced.

  • Dirgia's Electro Pulse:  Every 45 Seconds, Dirgia releases a pulse that highlights enemies behind walls in a 50m radius and grants all warframe weapons an additional 5m of punchthrough for 15 seconds. Use of this ability does not aggro unalerted enemies.

Dirgia is basically the sniper Sentinel, so why does he not have abilities that compliment sniper gameplay? For this, I basically ripped off and watered down the Zenith's alt-fire effect; only now, it's applicable on all weapons; at least it's applicable on all weapons every 45 seconds if you have Dirgia equipped. The intent here is to provide Dirgia with a unique support skill that makes an unused Companion fairly desirable.


This is about all I have for now, feel free to add your own ideas/suggestions to this thread in the hopes that come Companion 2.0, no fury or mechanical buddy gets left behind.

Edited by (XB1)Vile Slanders
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Question is, if we can now use enhanced vitality etc on the kavats and kubrows cause they changed their category to read "companion" instead of "sentinel" so we can choose if we want link mods or just standard health mods depending on the frame we are using, then why cant we use link health and link shield and link armor on our sentinels, huh? that makes no sense.

that would make carrier much more useful. as it stands now, sentinels just die within 10 minutes of endless survival even with primed regen and maxed mods simply from all the AoE damage. 10 minutes on Mot and hes already dead LUL useless garbage

1380 health and 180 shields or something like this i think is the max he can get currently and that pretty much oneshots him even though supposedly enemies dont "target" sentinels but thats exactly what it feels like they are doing. but i guess theres just too much enemy AoE in the game.

And its even worse if you pop into operator mode to go activate some life support or something, then while your frame is invincible, the enemies are still spraying it with fire while your sentinel is right there taking it all to the face so when you pop back into the frame, hes dead. RIP

Why wont you just let us use link mods on sentinels? if moas can, why not?

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  • 1 month later...

Please, please, please implement the stasis removal suggested above. Switching between Adarza and Smeeta is painful. If I want to do an Eidolon hunt and then immediately do a loot farm afterwards, I should be able to do that from the navigation screen with just a simple loadout switch.

I'll also add that it's painful to not be able to use any animal companions while I'm breeding a new one. I should be able to use any existing animals while another one is growing.

I also agree that animals, sentinels, and MOAs need better balance and damage.

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