I have made several changes to the Monk class and they have met with varying degrees of success (mostly lackluster). I attribute this mostly to my own poor vision of what Monks were as a whole from a broader perspective. I had no solid picture to work toward, so most changes were directionless band-aids or attempts to shore up a perceived class weakness that, because of weak vision, would open up other deficiencies. So! To tackle the problem in a real way, we had a long talk about what Monks were in Dalaya from a story-telling perspective. We discussed how they differed, narratively, from other classes in their niche (e.g. Rogues and Rangers) and why a player might choose one over the other to play and to group with AND how these differences then translated into gameplay. Here are some of the results of our discussion: - Rogues and Monks are both quick melee fighters. BUT Rogues are opportunistic and sneaky where monks are disciplined and careful. Where a Rogue would stealth up behind someone to avoid counterattack, a Monk approaches from the front and relies on his reflexes and training to avoid any counterattack. - To expand on this, Rogues use the element of surprise to increase their combat effectiveness where Monks redirect their opponents' strengths against them. - Monks are quiet fighters. They are not riding into combat in gleaming mail armor atop a white steed leading an army! - Monks are duellists chiefly. They can fight in group situations, but the classic Wuxia scenario is monk vs. monk. - In a classic Monk duel, both warriors start armed with exotic weapons. But as the fight progresses, weapons fall by the wayside and the climactic finale is furious hand-to-hand fighting. - Rogues get in, get the kill, and get out. Monks train for years under waterfalls or whatever to enabled themselves to stay in the fight as long as possible. Now with a more complete mental picture of what Monks ACTUALLY DO, we set about tackling some of the annoying gameplay issues about Monks: - Feign Death is a weird skill. No one wants to change it, just better-define its use. Feigning Death to facilitate wipe recovery is great and important and FD-splitting is a weird but culturally accepted and expected part of the game. Feigning Death as a "jolt" aggro dump or AE dodge is, for me, on the other side of that weird line of what FD means. If you are worrying about this, please stop. - Monks get EIGHT buttons in addition to the normal combat buttons. SIX of them are special attacks (counting basic Kick). It is highly doubtful that there can be six equally useful combat abilities since they are all mutually exclusive every hotbutton rotation. On the other hand, 3 punches and 3 kicks is a Street Fighter machine (I think this is by design). - A Monk's primary role is "damage" which is not special or interesting. If Monks became the over-all best at damage, this post would have to be repeated in the future with a different class and so on into infinity. Even if we restrict their specialty to "melee damage" it changes nearly nothing about this. Why choose a Monk over a Rogue, then? Or vice-versa? Or why not just roll another Wizard? - Hand to hand vs. Weapon combat is just a minefield of weird design choices, especially when coupled with the idea of "Hand-to-hand Weapons". Giving up weapon slot stats should give something as compensation but there should be real reasons to choose to use weapons or not. It should never be okay to ignore hand-to-hand combat and it should never be okay to ignore the strenghts of weapons. And now the proposed changes. It's actually pretty minor, all things considered now that I look at the list, but: - People love the Warrior Rage system and I do, too! Let's give Monks a simplified version that incorporates their special moves: It's not Rage. It's not Stamina. It is DISCIPLINE! Build Discipline by attacking with weapons. Monk special moves USE Discipline to add additional effects if the Monk has enough, otherwise just uses normal move. At full Discipline, unleash Fists of Fury stance, doing large Hand-to-hand punch and kick damage!! Most other stances stay as they are - I love Ethereal and Whirlwind Stance etc. Hand-to-Hand weapons are weapons. Bad Combo System removed. - Monk are agile duellists, not tanks or "stop falling over randomly mid-fight". Monsters will, in general, choose not to attack a Monk in combat. Area of Effect PHYSICAL attacks will simply hit Monks less. They have trained for centuries in the chamber of wooden men for this. Likewise, retribution attacks like Riposte and Rampage are supremely predictable to a trained Monk. There's no reason to park behind a giant Dragon if you already know what they are going to do. Monks get a bonus to dodging targets face-to-face and a bonus to aux-tanking. - Possible additions Monks are masters of martial combat. Perhaps incentives for 2h vs 2x1h combat? Other stuff? Hopefully, these changes give Monks a good home as safe, long-haul fighters that pack a punch without allowing them to be invulnerable enough to take over tanking duties for a raid. It re-opens Flying Kick as the main ability of choice (especially in Fists of Fury mode). It culls the chaff of the combo system and streamlines the utility into the 6 moves that already exist (if you want to use them). I'm sure people will still flop mid-fight, but this will cut down on that and leave FD to pulling / wipe recovery (two great uses!!!). It allows a melee fighter NOT stuffed in a tin can to sit in front of a mob. It establishes situations that prioritize weapons and situations that prioritize punching. - What I need from the thread Ideas for 'additional effects' for each of the 6 moves. I suspect round kick will just get bonus damage from discipline use since it is the first one monks get, and they can't all be extra damage, and I want Flying Kick to be the main attack once it is available. Those are the guidelines for that. Comments on the other proposed changes. I think that the aggro generation thing will not affect monk/healer duos so much so I am aware and careful of that facet of things. No Guff FURTHER ISSUES THAT HAVE BEEN RAISED: What to do with ordinary stances? I suspect they can remain the same with lowered costs (since you are always assumed to have a smaller yellow bar). What about glove itemization? This will be a separate thread after these numbers are finalized. What about the current Hand-to-hand bonus? This will be rolled into Fists of Fury stance in a more creative way than raw ratio upgrades. A tanking stance? Maybe, one that is of moderate duration so that it can not be always-on and one in which your combat effectiveness is diminished. If you are gonna tank, you are gonna need to get healed. What about AE / 2H? A good idea. I think I will have no problem reworking Whirlwind Stance into something functional with 2H weapons while accounting for exploitable procs. Maybe enhanced regen to promote the idea of long-term sustainability in combat? Not a bad idea for a little flavor, but Iksars already have a small edge here and if there was ever an Ogre Monk, I would have to undo this because that is a huge amount of regen. Maybe add a small HoT to Discipline-enhanced Mend? People really REALLY want a no-fail FD. I like the idea of FD applying a short combat slow when used, but can't think of a good way to distinguish between "I just want a normal FD" and "I need a no-fail FD right now and am willing to pay for it". Avoidance vs. Mitigation on physical AE/auxing? I have no problem enhancing both as my vision is a melee fighter who, on-tier, cares noticeably less about these things than his companions. Attacking from the front lowering total DPS? It will probably lower it a bit as is true for all classes, but Monks are the defensive melee fighter. If you are in Fists of Fury DPS mode, I think it is okay to assume you will shuffle around back. Thanks! EDIT -=CURRENT PROGRESS=- Monks have a discipline system where their 6 combat moves have extra abilities under certain circumstances: -NORMAL STANCE No moves have power-forms (pure discipline generation) -AGGRESSIVE STANCE: Kick now has the small lifetap Round kick will now do an AE attack Flying kick has a large increase to base damage -DEFENSIVE STANCE: Tiger claw will generate extra aggro Eagle strike will stun or interrupt Dragon punch / tail thing will kb/root -MOST OTHER STANCES: Removed except for Ethereal Form which is currently fixed at 20 seconds and locks Discipline generation for a short time on use. Currently Lay Hands equivalent reuse timer. A mob is never behind a Monk, ever. (PERMANENT /s 6). Flat Hand-to-hand bonus removed and looking for a way to integrate reasonably with gear progression. Monk Aux-Tanking Suite: A Monk aux-tanking a mob raises the aux cap for that mob slightly. A Monk has slightly increased aux contribution. If armed, a Monk takes less damage from a mob it is aux-tanking. If armed, a Monk innately dodges more attacks from a mob it is aux-tanking.