BioWare is addressing some core issues with the Conquest System in SWTOR update 6.1.4, which is set to arrive in October 2020. We also have a confirmation of the teased Guard DPS reduce change coming with the same patch. PTS 6.1.4 will be open soon and all of the changes listed and explained below will be available for testing
Please, keep in mind that what you are about to read is not final and further changes may occur during PTS testing phase(s). Some of the proposed and tried changes may be reverted, pushed back for a future update or further altered for release of 6.1.4.
With that note out of the way, let’s check out what gameplay designer Chris Durei and system designer David Staats revealed today on the SWTOR forums!
The Guard DPS Change
Chris posted an update to the Guard ability coming up for testing and potentially releasing with 6.1.4 in October.
“We’ve heard your feedback about Guarding in PVP and we are hoping to address some of those concerns with this change.” said Chris.
The planned change reads:
While active, the guarded player takes 5% less damage and generates 25% less threat. In addition, so long as you remain within 15 meters of the guarded player, 50% of all incoming damage from enemy players is transferred back to you. You deal 50% less damage while guarding.
The idea here is that while you are guarding someone, you should ideally focus on that – protecting them, not doing a DPS’s job. And in case you were wondering – yes, this change only applies to DPS Disciplines! Be gone Skank Tanks, says BioWare. Ouch!
Chris backed up the proposed change with the following statement: “The purpose of this change is to discourage the use of guard in every situation in PVP. While we feel like guarding is a useful skill and important to the advanced classes that have access to it, it has become clear that it is being abused in PVP by guarding and guard switching with no penalty. This makes PVP unbalanced towards the disciplines that have access to guard.“
How do you feel about this change? Will it bring desired results or create an uprising? Is the penalty of 50% reduction too much?
6.1.4 Conquest changes
Did you really believe we can get more than two or three SWTOR patches in a row without some sort of a serious change to the Conquest System? Me neither.
BioWare is preparing what seems to be a nerf-bat, but it’s really more of a rebalancing update to the system with lots of nerfed Conquest Points for smaller objectives and a few buffs to more complex tasks to even the overall feeling of satisfaction when doing Conquest in the game.
“We took a thorough look at every Conquest objective and balanced their final points through emphasizing objective time to complete, complexity, and repeatability. The result is an abundance of Conquest points for some of the most complex and/or time intensive objectives, lesser points for marginal time and effort objectives, and an even scale for those objectives in the middle.” said David in his forum post.
David also provided a glimpse at what these changes will actually with a short list of a few objectives and how their Points rewards are being rebalanced:
- Items: Credits for Junk is now worth 550 points (down from 1,750).
- Advancement: Hail a Taxi is now worth 550 points (down from 1,750).
- Starfighter: <Ship> Eternal is now worth 2,200 points (up from 600).
- Chapters: Any are now worth 4,850 points (up from 3,000).
- Operation: Master is now worth 13,100 points (up from 7,500).
- Iokath: Weekly Mission is now worth 22,250 points (up from 4,000).
- Team Ranked: Total Domination is now worth 100,000 points (up from 13,500).
These are raw Conquest Points, not taking into account any bonuses you might have.
The next area where changes are coming is the Level Brackets.
“We continue to review the Objectives available for each bracket to ensure players of all levels have a meaningful and enjoyable Conquest experience, while also challenging players in the appropriate manner.” David explained. He also provided a demo list of what to expect:
- Advancement: Legacy is now in the 10-49 bracket (in addition to 50-70 and 71+).
- World Boss (Coruscant/Dromund Kaas – Corellia) is now in the 10-49 bracket (in addition to 50-70 and 71+).
- Items: Credits for Junk is now only in the 10-49 bracket (it is no longer in the 50-70 and 71+ brackets)
Along with that there will also be a bunch of new objectives added to the roster. If you thought that there can possible no more things that you can do and not get Conquest Points for them, well you are wrong!
“We want to continue offering additional avenues for players to participate in Conquests without feeling like they have to choose Conquests over an activity that they want to participate in. For instance, a player who spends their time playing through Knights of the Fallen Empire or Knights of the Eternal Throne may be sacrificing a decent chunk of Conquest participation in order to enjoy their epic stories.
Our goal continues to be allowing you to play how you want while feeling like you are able to meaningfully contribute to your Conquest goals. As such, we have added new Conquest Objectives you can expect to see on a regular cadence, ranging from Defeating Skytroopers and completing Heroic Planetary Missions, to Uprisings and conquering Star Fortresses!”
Some of the new objectives will be related to the recurring monthly and by-monthly events. Chris gave the following list as an example of what is being added to support the Gree event on Ilum:
- Relics of the Gree: Critical Missions is now Infinitely repeatable and worth 1,650 points (previously was Daily only worth 4,000)
- Relics of the Gree: Defeat Surgok’k is now worth 5,800 points (up from 4,000).
- Relics of the Gree: Defeat Gravak’k is now worth 5,800 points (up from 4,000).
- Relics of the Gree: The Gray Secant is now worth 10,700 points (up from 9,750).
- Relics of the Gree: The Gray Secant Pinnacle is now worth 2,700 points (up from 1,100).
- NEW Relics of the Gree: Defeat Droids is a Weekly Conquest Objective worth 10,700.
- NEW Relics of the Gree: Defeat Droids 2 is an Infinitely repeatable Objective worth 2,750.
There are on average two to three events per month each lasting a week. These weeks will offer the aforementioned new and modified Conquest objectives to help inspire players to participate in the events, even if there’s nothing they need at this point. Everybody always needs Conquest. Or… do they?
“These new additions are not only exclusive to our rotational events, however! In addition, we are branching out and adding Conquest Objectives for our Seasonal events as well! Be on the lookout for new and exciting ways to participate in both Seasonal and rotational Events through Conquest as they come around!” clarified David.
If you are wondering what are Seasonal events – the Nar Shaddaa’s Nightlife is a great example. And Update 6.1.4 is expected to launch another brand new Seasonal Event – Feast of Prosperity! It was first revealed with the latest Roadmap the devs gave us. A few days ago it was also mentioned in Aviriia’s interview with SWTOR devs.
An important, at least in my opinion, quality of life improvement is the final change David brought up in his post – shorter UI pop-up notifications. Nice.
On top of these changes BioWare also advertised a new Introduction to the whole Conquest System. As David stated in his post, this system has seen a significant amount of changes over the years since it was first released.
The Conquest intro mission is getting a revision including an updated segment for the rewards you can receive from doing conquests and some text rewording. Also as soon as you reach level 10 you will be granted that mission automatically. Regardless if you care about Conquest or not, you will be introduced to it. Or at least prompted to.
If you want to check out the new version of the mission, but have leveled past 10 already, you can still pick it up from the Mission Terminal on the Fleet.
That’s it for today. To be honest I did not expect Conquest changes coming with 6.1.4. I don’t know why it caught me in a surprise. I did state myself earlier in this article that it’s already been a couple of patches without significant Conquest changes. It was time for the next batch.
How do you feel about the Conquest changes? Are they really bringing more balance and improving on the system? Do you even care about the low level brackets? I personally never ever paid any attention to the sub level 71 brackets as I level my alts.
PTS with 6.1.4 is teased as “coming very soon”. I expect it to be up by the end of the week. Musco announced that there will be a live stream to announce the server going online and a preview of what will be available for testing.
The full update 6.1.4 is currently targeting a release date in October and by the looks of things it is most likely to be around the end of the month. As always when there is new information, I and VULKK.com will be here to serve it to you!
If you have not been around recently and have some free time for SWTOR, let me remind you that the Double XP event has returned and will remain here for almost a full month! Also check out my overview of what is new and important in SWTOR 6.1.3.