After running around doing “to and fro” quests and just getting a look at the new expansion, I tried fighting things.
Very quickly, I got into a bit of trouble and I reached for Peace of Mind, an AA ability from the Void expansion. Peace of Mind adds a damage proc to every hostile action that anyone in my group does, so it’s kind of like overdrive. I Clicked on the button (which was a macro, or I’d have noticed that it was grayed out.) and nothing happened. Click again, still nothing. Zuh? After I revived, I remembered that it was an AA ability and they’ve all been reset, because they’ve been reorganized.
When you do this with your characters, be careful. Many things in all three trees are similar, but not the same. For example, the very first point that Enchanters put into the Enchanter tree grants them Mana Flow, an ability that transfers power to a raid friend. It’s still there. However, you can put up to 9 more points into Mana Flow, and each point does nothing to improve the ability, but instead grants you 4 points of Intelligence and Stamina. The stat-granting abilities that used to sit just under the first point on that tree are gone. All gone.
Phritz, Karaya, Ratta, Lunna, and Heroh also were on last night looking at the expansion. And there was some discussion that the effect that your characteristic, Strength, Dexterity, Stamina, Intelligence, and Wisdom, have on gameplay has been altered. Rollover text on these in the Persona window seems to indicate that, for example, Dexterity is the primary stat for everything a Brigand (Mauser) or a Troubador (Phritz) does. And the stat buff portion of the AA lines have been greatly reduced or eliminated.
Before, Int increased spell damage, even if you were, say, a troubador, and Strength increased combat art and melee damage, even on characters such as Inquisitors. Has this changed? Players have used this as an additional build option, making strong melee characters out of Inquisitors, building Strength on Assassins and Brigands, and boosting Int on Troubadors and Furies for added spell damage.
I have yet to see any real item drops from the new expansion, but this seems an important question. Long ago, the theory was to boost STR for defenders, DEX for scouts, INT for mages and WIS for priests. But then we realized what the stats controlled and how we could use that to make characters that were more effective.
This definitely deserves further study and experimentation. It’s quite possible that we are in for a round of relearning how to build and equip characters. But that’s fun, right?