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[DE]Momaw

Rework Nekros' Shadows Of The Dead...why, And How

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So, in response to most recent Hot Topics....

 

I feel like Nekros has been improved by the recent ability changes, but Shadows of the Dead (SOTD) still feels lackluster. Nekros as a warframe is quite fragile with low shields and no method of invulnerability. It seems to me like the the intent of him is that he should be hiding behind an army of shadow zombies as a necromancer/summoner, letting them draw the fire while Nekros supports them with fresh bodies.

 

The reason this falls flat on its face in actual use is that;

1.) SOTD can't be re-cast while it is already active, and it stays active so long as any of your shadows are still active. So you frequently end up with situations where you have 1 shadow left alive out of your build-spec of ten, and no way to get back to full strength except to let the ability run down.

2.) SOTD are generally pretty stupid, and tend to scatter and seek cover. This means that they often end up in places where they are of no use whatsoever in distracting the enemy from shooting you.

 

This leads to a situation where trying to mod for SOTD and make it "better" is trying to work with two conflicting mechanics;  you want it to last a reasonable length of time and summon lots of shadows so that you can do other things while it's running and so you have a big powerful shadow army. But at the same time, you don't want it to last too long or make too many shadows, because there's a high chance your shadows will be under-quota or cowering behind cover two rooms away, so you need to be able to recast it on a regular basis.

 

It's just not very nice all around and could do with a mechanical change. So I'll throw two proposals out on the table.

 

The first is a fairly tame rework:   Simply allow the player to re-cast SOTD if it is already running. The duration is refilled,  "empty" places in the shadow army are filled if you have kills that you can use, and the shadow army as a whole is teleported to wherever you are aiming.  Now at the player's discretion you can let your army get a bit ragged and scattered for power efficiency, or recast frequently to feed them with fresh bodies and push them into the enemy's faces at a higher energy cost.

 

Second proposal is a bit more wild;   change SOTD to a toggle skill. While SOTD is active, any holes in your shadow army are immediately and automatically filled as you make new kills.  This costs the player some energy every time it happens. Player can then choose how much energy to invest in keeping their army topped off by simply turning it off when it becomes too expensive. With this rework, it's implicit that SOTD  AI should be changed to follow the player instead of scattering to seek cover.

 

 

Discuss?

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Either one of your ideas would work pretty well, and I agree that the shadows really need their AI changed. They're not aggressive enough and spend far too much time in cover, doing nothing and being useless.

 

They're already dead, they shouldn't care about bullets flying their way, they shouldn't have any self-preservation instinct.

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A generalized "Shadow A.I." is needed, but that in itself will require a lot of work and I'd rather see the general enemy A.I. fixed before that.

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I only chose "nekros's changes are good, but they need more" (or whatever it says) choice in that thread because I feel SotD is still lacking in an AI point of view, though I think recasting the ability would help, just let the 10 guys you summoned die and then new 10 guys (depends on how many you killed ofc) get summoned at the location where you are now, cos the real problem with the AI is that if they stay for too long in 1 place, and this change kinda fixes that 

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Can we get Infested Charger AI on all units that aren't Nullifiers and Shield Ospreys?
Like honestly I want my damage units to just run headfirst at the enemy.

Kidding.

I think everything should do Tenno Spectre-ish pathing -- keeping within 15-20m of the Nekros that spawned them, but shooting at everything they can see.

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SoTD has been brought up a lot yet it's primary issue is rarely mentioned. Enemy summon Type.

It's been requested to buff AI, Damage, Health, Waypoints, Cost, animations, and the list goes on - but these don't fix the shadow type issue.

The fact that each shadow has a duration, 1 time use and a summon cache causes the ability to be inconsistent. These issues combined causes it to not be worth the players effort.

To Fix:

Making it a toggle like the OP has suggested would definitely work. As long as shadows lived as long as they had health or Nekros toggled the ability. (No duration)

Or

After killing strong enemy types, (gunners, bombards, tar moas, etc) they're always summoned as 4 out of 10 shadows at max rank and are based off the level of your most recent kills. This means you'd still have to kill them to summon them but afterwards you'd always be able to summon at least four strong types.. (To be clear, gunners, bombards, ancients, tar moas, etc. fill those four slots and won't be replaced by a crawler, lancer and so forth.)

No matter what you buff, crawlers =\= tar moas, ancients. Lancers =\= Bombards, gunners. Once the strong types are in the summon cue, killing weaker types reduces the effectiveness of the ability. That's the main issue. Being able to maintain a gunner or bombard in place of a lancer is a buff in health, damage and AI all in one fix.

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Pulling from my thread here: https://forums.warframe.com/index.php?/topic/393459-new-and-improved-nekros/

Shadows of the Dead - The latest patch allowed use to be able to walk through the shadows, this needs to be taken slightly further, allowing us to shoot through shadows, while they absorb enemy gunfire. On top of this, the way the soul cache for Nekros works needs to be slightly changed, where enemies in his cache are constantly being checked. If he gains a soul that is higher level or has higher priority over ones in his possession, take out the lowest soul and put the new one in. This insures that Nekros has the best souls of enemies he has killed at his disposal. 

 

The shadows should also have a slight AI change, where when summoned they are set to "protect" mode, following Nekros in a loose ring around him to protect him and nearby allies. However, anytime that the ability is active, holding 4/middle mouse button with Shadows selected, will allow you to hit the "Use" key, marking the spot for your Shadows to defend that area, rather than following you. At any time casting Shadows again while its still active and your Shadows are defending, they will return to your side (whether they return to you by running, or instead travelling as souls through walls and enemies is something to discuss). 

 

A thought I've toyed around with is the possibility of Nekros gaining souls from enemies bodies that he desecrates as well, again using the sorting system for his soul cache.

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Give the shadows the same A.I. as our syndicate NPC friends. They're stupid, but they follow us and get in the way. It'd be a good temp fix until DE's a.i becomes more sophisticated over the years.

Melee shadows act like kubrows, ranged shadows act like syndicate allies.

Edit: Yay, 19,000

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Give the shadows the same A.I. as our syndicate NPC friends. They're stupid, but they follow us and get in the way. It'd be a good temp fix until DE's a.i becomes more sophisticated over the years.

Melee shadows act like kubrows, ranged shadows act like syndicate allies.

Edit: Yay, 19,000

was gonna post this. u beat me to it. yup. this. gratz on 19,000.

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