This week we will be making the following changes to Raids in Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes:
- [CHANGE] The Expose debuff has been reduced from 0.0004 of Raid Boss health to 0.0002 of Raid Boss health across all raids.
- Testing indicates Rey (Jedi Training) remains one of the most effective squads in the Sith Triumvirate Raid in spite of the 50% reduction in damage from Expose.
- [CHANGE] Sith Triumvirate Raid Boss health in Phase 1 has been reduced by 5% across all tiers.
- [CHANGE] Raid Darth Traya’s Bonds of Weakness will no longer activate “on-damage” abilities.
- This change will prevent Storm Trooper Han’s infinite loop in the raid.
- [CHANGE] When Raid Darth Traya becomes Enraged she will dispel all positive status effects on her enemies and apply an undispellable, unresistable buff immunity as well.
- [FIX] Sith Triumvirate raid Phase 2, Darth Sion will no longer incorrectly remove 100% turn meter using "Torment".
- Why Change “Expose”?
We’ve been actively monitoring play patterns, player behavior, and community sentiment since the release of the Raid. This change is part of our commitment to maintaining a healthy game for the long-term, which means we occasionally need to make changes when unintended play patterns emerge.
Late last week, we determined a change needed to be made to the Expose mechanic. However, we still needed to undergo rounds of tuning and testing before settling on specific numbers. In our ongoing commitment to communicating with our players, we wanted to let you know changes were coming (in advance of specific details) to give everyone time to consider how that might impact their investment in certain characters.
We’d like to let you in on our thinking and the process on how we arrived at that decision.
- Expose’s Design Intent and History
Expose was originally intended to be a high risk, high reward mechanic. The intention was for it behave like a Damage over Time (DoT) with the added complexity of requiring interaction to make it most effective. As a reward for this extra interaction, Expose did four times the damage of a DoT. When Expose was initially launched this worked out as we intended.
With the introduction of Zeta abilities, Finn's Zeta Leader ability changed Expose to be a source of cool-down reduction and turn meter manipulation (in the context of a Resistance squad).This solved a couple problems with the Resistance faction, making it more powerful as well as giving it a clear identity (e.g., the Expose squad). However, Expose at this point stopped being as much a source of damage and more a source of making Resistance squads go faster.
When we introduced Rey (Jedi Training), we wanted to add strategic options to the Resistance. Finn-led teams would rotate cooldowns more quickly. Rey (Jedi Training) led teams would do more damage output. We were satisfied with distinction between the two.
When we decided to give Rey (Jedi Training) an unresistable ability, Expose changed from being a high-risk/high-reward strategy, to a strategy that had few (if any) downsides. At the time, this didn’t present as a significant issue. Rey (Jedi Training) was performing as intended in PvP and in the existing raids. We were in the process of designing the Sith Triumvirate, so we knew we’d have a fresh challenge for Rey (Jedi Training) soon enough. Or so we thought….
- Raid Mechanics
As we build raids, they become interesting time capsules of the state of power, gear, synergies, and status effects at their initial release. When the Rancor and the AAT were originally released there was no Gear Tier XII, no Zeta abilities, nor many of the synergies that now exist in the game. Furthermore, guild sizes and dynamics have shifted dramatically over time, also changing the way players strategize and interact with the raids. Raids have gone from something a dedicated few do, to the thing many dedicated Star Wars fans do together… which we think is awesome.
As we develop new raids we have two primary tuning levers: health and mechanics. There are other, more subtle tools, but those are the largest and most obvious. Health naturally increases in the raids as synergies and raw power trend upward over time. Additionally, our intent is for players to leverage as much of their roster as possible to accomplish larger and more heroic challenges.
The Sith Lords are such iconic and interesting characters, that the Sith Triumvirate Raid was an obvious opportunity to introduce significant and intricate mechanical design decisions. So much of what makes Galaxy of Heroes interesting is understanding the interactions between the many characters and abilities, and gaining mastery over opponents in combat. With this raid, we wanted to add new layers of depth and see what strategies guilds would come up with, AND use the results to inform emergent strategies for the future.
- The Dilemma
To keep raids challenging over time, we have had to increase the amount of raid health and the complexity of the mechanics. The problem is percent-based health mechanics become increasingly more powerful as boss health goes up. The Expose mechanic has become so powerful it now virtually snuffs out most other strategies.
Our perspective is that an overwhelming single-solve undercuts what makes the game interesting, and presents a threat to the future of the game.
The question then is: do we remove the ability to use one of our most fun and powerful teams by saying, “No Expose” (for a raid that is currently difficult)? Or, do we compromise and change Expose so its effect is mitigated, but still powerful? We’ve opted for the latter.
- The Solution
After testing, we believe moving Expose from .0004 to .0002 will keep Rey (Jedi Training) teams competitive in the Rancor and AAT (and will also keep Finn Zeta Leader Ability teams competitive as well), but will mitigate them being overpowered in the Sith Triumvirate raid. Additionally, the gap between Expose and other emerging strategies is less pronounced, which we believe will help spur on additional, lively theorycrafting.
In making this change to Expose, we’re attempting to balance short-term enjoyment of the new raid content with the continued overall health of the game.
- The Future
As we introduce new mechanics, game modes, and as the game’s power level increases over time, we will continue to evaluate all aspects of long-term game health.
At times, there may be cases where changes to the game are necessary. When those cases arise, we will try to be as transparent as possible with the community.
We appreciate your passion and commitment to the game, and with your help, we will continue to improve Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes.