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Recent changes to Xaku's Grasp of Lohk may have thwarted many Xaku playstyles


GridlockPact

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The goal of this post is to dissuade the devs from settling with the latest changes to Xaku's Grasp of Lohk.

After the change, recasting the ability adds stolen guns to preexisting ones instead of replacing them. This lets Xaku players reach a reasonable number of stolen guns without needing to come across a large group of enemies.

Before the change, the reason to mod and play Xaku around Grasp of Lohk was twofold; not only the ability turns Xaku into a one-man firing squad, but it also disarms all nearby enemies.

Grasp of Lohk now cannot be recast while the number of stolen guns is at max. Since it's an ability with a duration (which is often extended by Vast Untime), players aren't able to reliably cast it to disarm enemies at a desired moment. Bolstering one aspect of an ability at the expense of another could be inevitable when improving a warframe with such an extensive skillset. However, I really hope that the devs reconsider compromising the mass disarm that Grasp of Lohk provides, for it played a significant role in many Xaku players' playstyle. 

A single, preemptive cast of Grasp of Lohk prevents almost all ranged aggression in a large area. When it was able to be recast anytime, Grasp of Lohk served as an amazing defensive tool, which a fragile frame like Xaku needed. Stripping away such means of survivability was an unwarranted setback to Xaku. Also, the ability used to reduce enough incoming projectiles to give players an option to depend more on the 75% dodge chance from Vast Untime. After the change, players are more likely to develop a playstyle without the dodge chance in consideration.

Players were able to consistently fight enemies within the range of Gaze (defense strip ability) by letting disarmed enemies charge towards them. This more or less allowed players to enjoy the benefits of Gaze without being pressured into building Xaku for range. To be fair, said synergy isn't likely to be gravely missed by many Xaku players, thanks to the massive buff to Gaze's base radius. I, along with many other Xaku players, nevertheless appreciated the intuitiveness of said synergy and would love to make use of it again.

In search of an alternative solution to Xaku's survivability, players may resort to recently improved Accuse (mass mind-control ability), using the ability primarily to pacify all nearby enemies. Since mind-controlled enemies are not affected by Deny (beam cc ability), guns stolen with Grasp of Lohk, and the void status from Xata's Whisper, playstyles heavily revolving around Accuse may result in an inharmonious experience. I'm not saying that Accuse is a problematic ability. I'm saying that Accuse becoming a dominant part in many players' playstyle is one of the problems that could arise because of the loss of the option to disarm enemies freely.

An improvement I can imagine the devs making, while retaining the latest changes Grasp of Lohk received, is that Grasp of Lohk can simply be recast while the number of stolen guns is at max. It would also make sense if each ability cast replaces the oldest guns with new ones that exceed the capacity. If the matter at hand comes to the devs' attention, I'm confident that they would come up with a better solution, which surely incorporates factors that are beyond my reach.

In case this post sets off a discussion, below are some stock questions for our lovely community (feel free to ignore):

Do you agree/disagree with my concerns? 

How do you play Xaku, and did the latest changes to Xaku improve/harm/alter your playstyle?

If there's anything you would like to change about Xaku, what is it?

If you haven't gotten around with Xaku yet, why?

 

 

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On 2020-11-23 at 11:43 AM, [DE]Momaw said:

Not a bug. Xaku cannot recast Grasp while being fully supplied with guns. The intended use for this power is that you will use it to amplify your firepower with auto-guns, not to be a superior cheaper version of Loki's Radial Disarm.

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4 minutes ago, Skaleek said:
On 2020-11-24 at 1:43 AM, [DE]Momaw said:

Not a bug. Xaku cannot recast Grasp while being fully supplied with guns. The intended use for this power is that you will use it to amplify your firepower with auto-guns, not to be a superior cheaper version of Loki's Radial Disarm.

So I guess it is intended then. damn guess I'll have to get used to it then haha

Thnx for finding the post!

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49 minutes ago, GridlockPact said:

So I guess it is intended then. damn guess I'll have to get used to it then haha

Thnx for finding the post!

Xaku doesnt really need more cc anyway tbh. But if thats really your bag then swapping whisper for a cc ability is all you gots to do.

Spectrorage is a good one for xaku since they benefit greatly from range and duration already.

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5 minutes ago, Leqesai said:

Xaku doesnt really need more cc anyway tbh. But if thats really your bag then swapping whisper for a cc ability is all you gots to do.

Spectrorage is a good one for xaku since they benefit greatly from range and duration already.

Spectrorage sounds awesome! I find it best to infuse saryn's molt and spam shield gating. But I personally find it most enjoyable when I play a frame with all of their original abilities intact.

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20 hours ago, Skaleek said:

I believe there was a dev post about this. I think it said that their intention is not for grasp of lohk to be a straight up better radial disarm.

The Grasp of Lohk has limits, basically 12 at 200 range.... the Radial disarm does it without limits...

 

20 hours ago, GridlockPact said:

1) Do you agree/disagree with my concerns? 

2) How do you play Xaku, and did the latest changes to Xaku improve/harm/alter your playstyle?

3) If there's anything you would like to change about Xaku, what is it?

1) I don't play like you do (disarm + Gaze) but making enemies "disarmed" is main focus of "my" Xaku. So making Grasp of Lohk not disarm enemies past X number of enemies is annoying thing. It just makes GoL just another passive damage dealer that DE are so strongly against.
2) My gameplay of Xaku is disarming enemies with the Grasp of Lohk (roll > disarm > roll etc.) and/or "disarm" them using high status weapon (e.g. the Mutalist Cernos) with Xata's whisper (enemies doesn't shoot you). I made 200% strenght but slow debuff is not reliable, still sometimes I like them being slow. Umbral Vitality (+ U.intensify), Adaptation + Rolling guard. And you are pretty safe from damage. I have 100% range (so max 6 enemies) so I use a lot of GoL + rolls or Xata's whisper "disarmer". It's very ACTIVE gameplay, that's what they like, am I right?
The latest change just make disarming armed enemies harder... but not impossible. I'm thinking about changing duration from ~75 to even lower. It won't be the same Xaku as before, the Xaku I fell in love... now it's just nice.
3) Many things:

- first Grasp of Lohk should disarm enemies always. You can limit max enemies disarmed at once to 6 (max gun limit can go higher, e.g. 12? but I don't really care about gun-replicas part). More here (write something there, please): https://forums.warframe.com/topic/1236312-xakus-grasp-of-lohk-and-accuse-recast-functionality/

- the Vast untime speed boost should be higher (40-50%) or dependent on strength (e.g. at 200% strength => 40% speed boost). The slowness should start at higher value - 200% strength needed to see them slow is too much. It should start at ~40%. It should be an aura that are around you. Not one time cast. Now the Vast untime is just time stopper (which is not really needed if the other abilities have good durations, and GoL disarm enemies past gun-limit) and bunch of buffs/debuff that doesn't do too much if you don't spam the VU or have lots of strength.

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On 2020-11-26 at 5:14 PM, Skaleek said:

I believe there was a dev post about this. I think it said that their intention is not for grasp of lohk to be a straight up better radial disarm.

Well Xaku needs to be made good at something. Vast Untime massively increasing ability duration doesn’t mean anything if the rest of the abilities are massively outperformed.

IDK what DEs mindset is with Xaku but it comes off as “Value style over substance”. And it’s just hurting Xaku at this point.

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11 hours ago, quxier said:

My gameplay of Xaku is disarming enemies with the Grasp of Lohk (roll > disarm > roll etc.) and/or "disarm" them using high status weapon (e.g. the Mutalist Cernos) with Xata's whisper (enemies doesn't shoot you). I made 200% strenght but slow debuff is not reliable, still sometimes I like them being slow. Umbral Vitality (+ U.intensify), Adaptation + Rolling guard. And you are pretty safe from damage. I have 100% range (so max 6 enemies) so I use a lot of GoL + rolls or Xata's whisper "disarmer". It's very ACTIVE gameplay, that's what they like, am I right?
The latest change just make disarming armed enemies harder... but not impossible. I'm thinking about changing duration from ~75 to even lower. It won't be the same Xaku as before, the Xaku I fell in love... now it's just nice.

Wow, that's a fascinating take on Xaku, a very disarm-centric playstyle. I imagine that the latest changes have affected you more than they have affected me.

The duration on my build has already been sitting at 67% and still felt like I was barred from casting GoL freely. However I think that's because I mostly play Xaku in endurance missions, where you're surrounded by enemies all the time. I guess I should extend my perspective to linear missions like exterminate and capture.

btw thnx for answering my questions with great detail!

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yeah not being able to recast at max turrets has ruined the disarm function, it also makes it cumbersome to update the turrets level scaling in missions where enemies change in levels. this is also a problem for accuse, which also has the added problem of not being able to switch accused targets at the max amount.

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On 2020-11-26 at 6:26 PM, Skaleek said:
On 2020-11-23 at 11:43 AM, [DE]Momaw said:

Not a bug. Xaku cannot recast Grasp while being fully supplied with guns. The intended use for this power is that you will use it to amplify your firepower with auto-guns, not to be a superior cheaper version of Loki's Radial Disarm.

I’m extremely baffled at such a tremendous sh*t take. This behavior is intended?! Does he not understand how this negates the entire synergy between VU and GoL and to an extent, Gaze?

It’s not even the fact that you can’t disarm anymore at max arsenal, it’s that retaining the max arsenal prevents further casts, which means if I want to keep up properly with enemies in any kind of scaling content, I’m prohibited from using VU for it’s intended effect, which is sustaining an even longer duration on my abilities to reduce the strain on my energy economy.

Why am I prohibited? Well, if I took turrets from level 70 enemies, and I’m now facing level 100 enemies with level 70 turrets thanks to VU, well...I mean, it’s pretty self-explanatory. 😑

Xaku (I haven’t received the r2 changes yet as I’m on console - thankfully) provides such a satisfying loop where you acquire your arsenal - gaze a target (which, I would like to see changed to where Xaku can just erect a pylon instead of locking down a target) - and then sustain/manage a zone of dps & debuffs with your proper recasts of VU. This gameplay style was the most fun I’ve had in WF in quite a while, and I’m lowkey (highkey) offended DE took that away from us. 🙇🏽

Here goes DE thinking they know everything. If this “intended” change doesn’t get reverted, I’m tossing both my Xakus out the airlock. 🤗

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57 minutes ago, (XBOX)Damizza said:
2 hours ago, quxier said:

 

I subsumed a third one already! Mag and Saryn with Xata’s Whisper are some of my favorite loadouts! (:

Well, I'm not gonna lose my 5 forma (+2 umbra) for that. I would like to this to be recastable...

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5 hours ago, quxier said:

Well, I'm not gonna lose my 5 forma (+2 umbra) for that. I would like to this to be recastable...

I would like to put an umbral forma on Xaku, but I feel like that would just limit some build potential (for my personal playstyle, of course).

Though I might consider refarming Xaku and giving an umbral build a shot.

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  • 1 month later...

Their need to avoid xaku becoming a weaker ember is making them push buffs into strange areas when they really need to rethink the role they want xaku to perform. If its not supposed to be room clear then let us buff the damage with abilities so we can make it extra strong supplemental single target damage, and for god sakes give deny like 10 buffs. They should have Toei Animation calling for copyright infringement after they get done with it (creators of dragon ball z if you where gonna be too lazy to look it up XD)

I wish it provided a stacking on kill buff to all powers so you could head hunt with it. Nidus being the only one with a unique mechanism besides those kinda gimicky ones (move, cast, eat, collect, and wait. Guess which ones I mean) to build a stacking effect makes me want more.

 

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