Continued from the Despoil Thread
It would be nice to create a unified petition for THF that all of us could agree on and send to SE. But it seems people have their own (often very different) specific solutions to the problems that Thief faces. Others don't agree on the problem(s).
As I see it, most of these issues are based on the opportunity for THF to deal damage. I have heard it said many times that THF is not a DD job by design. I disagree. I think it is a DD job based around a party dynamic that is no longer relevant
Many of our skills, abilities and traits are designed specifically for the purpose of DD. Sneak Attack, Trick attack, Triple Attack, Assassin, Critical Attack Bonus, Top tier DD daggers, Top Tier DD Armor, high dagger skill rating, and high damage potential weapon skills. Almost all of our Merits are DD oriented. Especially Category 2
In my opinion there are three areas that Thief needs fixing.
1. A damaging 2 hour ability.
This one has been admitted by SE and is overdue for a fix. It’s one of the fundamental reasons that every other DD job has more damage potential in many situations: In addition to their other bag of DD tricks, they can deal damage with their 2 hour. THF can’t.
I propose they do with us what they did with DRG: Put PD on a shorter timer and give us a damaging 2 hour ability.
That may sound extreme to some. But, Perfect Dodge isn’t that strong. It only lasts 30 seconds and doesn’t dodge ranged attacks or protect you from magic. I can already do what PD does…BETTER with Flee, shadows and a max evasion set.
With a damaging two hour, we can start to level the playing field with the other DD’s
2. The opportunity to deal damage to high defence targets.
I definitely think critical hits are the way to do it. It seems like SE does too. I like where they are going with the Critical Attack Bonus traits. We’ll have to see how they progress with levels. I can only hope we get the highest.
However, we also need a way boost to critical attack RATE. Either through job traits, better critical hit rate gear…something. THF needs to be able to meaningfully increase critical hit rate for it to be something that can compete. And we need to be able to do this without being forced to /war for fencer or sacrificing vital stats like Haste, ACC, ATT etc to do it.
3. The utility of Thief job abilities. This is two parts for me:
Sneak Attack and Trick Attack
THF’s main downfall is that using our fundamental damaging abilities requires an unreasonable level of cooperation that most groups aren't willing to cater to.
Many of today's FFXI events are not THF DD friendly because it is often most effective for the DD’s to burn TP at 100%, kill faster and bounce hate to mitigate damage between them. The mobs are constantly changing directions, making it difficult to land Sneak Attack consistently. In tankless TP burn parties, none of the DD’s WANT to be trick attacked. Maybe if they aren’t paying attention or don;t care you can land them, but a good portion of the DD’s I meet move out of the way when they see me ready trick attack behind them. This problem only gets worse the better your THF is. You're thinking "YEAH!! Check out that sick Trick Attack I just landed!" The other DD's are saying "Whoa! gtfo with that...I pull enough hate as it is. I don't want that on me!"
So, rather than lining up for a SATA line, making sure they don't turn the monster so the THF can land Sneak Attack, NOT jumping out of the way when they see a THF using trick attack behind them, or fulfilling any of the positional requirements that dealing damage as a THF requires, most DD will simply carry on like there was never a THF there. It is just more efficient for them to do so.
And why shouldn't they? Why should they have to sacrifice their own damage and efficiency, or take on the added risk of increased enmity, just so THF can do its DD job? This is quite a hindrance.
Further more, at the time I am typing this, I cannot remember the last time I was asked to come to an event that is actually tanked to use trick attack and help the tank keep hate. I didn’t see a THF trick attacking that RDM in their AV video!!
I propose that SE remove the positional REQUIREMENTS and create positional enhancements via job traits that cannot be subbed.
Sneak Attack: Your next attack will deal critical damage based on the same DEX formula that it is now. Same guaranteed Critical, same everything.
Instead of REQUIRING Sneak Attack to be performed behind a mob to land, performing it behind the mob will enhance it in some way. This enhancement could be: shedding a certain amount of enmity, or decreased enmity for the hit/WS, or even generating increased enmity so we can better use our evasive skills. It could even add a (not random <.<) status ailment . SE could really do a lot of things with this but make it a positional enhancement instead of a requirement.
Trick Attack: Your next attack will deal extra damage based on your AGL. Same guaranteed Critical, same everything. Instead of REQUIRING you to be behind a party member for it to land, it will transfer enmity only if performed behind a party member.
I’ve heard a few people say that removing the positional requirements would be “broken.” I strongly disagree with this. Specifically because it would not allow us to surpass our current potential at all. IF parties still worked like it was 2005 and tanks held hate for everything and no one TP burned anything, we would already be able to do this. The fact is, the game has evolved and THF has not. Our abilities are harder to land than is reasonable and often unwanted for their intended purpose.
With this change THF would put out consistent DD, but keep to the positional nature of the job to make use of the secondary enmity utility SE means us to have.
Thief Job Abilities like Aura Steal, Despoil, Steal, Mug etc.
Admittedly, this area is a sore spot for me. I have always been let down by Thiefesque abilities in FFXI.
I find that all of them have unreasonably long recast timers and unnecessarily low successes rates. I find that despoil and mug aren’t really worth using. I think that having aura steal attached to (item) steal is absurd, let alone only being usable every 5 minutes (with a chance to miss completely if the target has an item).
I have always wanted them to create steal categories akin to waltzes and sambas, have those groupings share recast timers and lower them to a max of 1 minute across the board (with some being less).
I mean, it is right there …make use of steal abilities as an offensive weapon. Steal TP, steal ACC, Steal Attack, Steal DEX, Steal Evasion, Steals that don’t take something but give a status ailment (Think Despoil…only useful) etc. There is no reason Thief shouldn’t utilize steal in battle. Especially since SE has made it very clear that our money making abilities are too dangerous to be made worth while.
Have three categories:
Steal, Mug, Item steal, Armor steal, Weapon steal (yeah I can dream)
Battle Related Steals
Despoil(not a random debuff), Steal Evasion, Steal ACC, Steal Attack, Steal DEX, etc.
Accomplice, Collaborator, An ability that redirects the enmity you stole to someone.
With this change, THF could supplement its DD with offensive steals while being able to retain and utilise its function as a THIEF.
I apologise this is so long. It seems I had a lot to say lol. This is not a "Hey guys lets send a petition in asking for all these things." Its more of a "Lets start a conversation about the possibility of agreeing on some of them" Maybe it isnt possible? But I'd like to try.
Edited, Aug 3rd 2010 7:51am by ThiefKiller