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    Player Nyarlko's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Posts
    1,499
    Character
    Nyarlko
    World
    Asura
    Main Class
    BST Lv 99

    {Bard} > {Help me out!} (or "Please make bard not useless")

    First off, I'm a returned player who's passion was bard back in 75cap days (main-job from PS2 launch until late '08.) I know enough about the mechanics of the job to know how to play it well and what it was capable of. When I came back to the game (on a fresh account since I don't remember my email from 7 years ago) I was looking forward to returning to the job I loved... to find bard in the state it's currently in.

    New tiers of old-standby songs looked nice at first. Then I tested and researched and found that the skill caps and effect caps on them are absurdly low. Everything from 75cap days has been essentially untouched and give pitiful effects when compared to the value they used to give. (Attack+30 meant a LOT more back then.) Even the new tiers of old songs cap at painfully low skill levels. Owning upgraded relic and empyrean instruments has become a requirement to have even the smallest selling point to groups. Add to this the addition of the monster known as GEO to the game, and BRD ends up looking weak to the point of pointlessness... All of these issues have piled up unaddressed over the years, and it's about time they get dealt with.

    Some of the solutions/suggestions I've come up with to some of these problems:

    * Buff songs:
    - Raise the combined skill cap on all songs to reasonable, post-75, levels. As is, a naked bard equipped with nothing but an instrument appears to be well past the skill caps of every song other than Scherzo. This reduces the value of skill+ to only having a potential benefit of increased m.acc for debuffs, which are actually also likely to be capped at a lower skill level than can be attained simply by leveling to 99.
    For tiered songs, tiered caps would probably be acceptable, with songs 76+ capping @ 700-900 combined skill, and pre-75 songs capping at native skill levels between level 75-85.

    - Raise the effects of buff songs to comparable levels of a similarly equipped GEO (at the same combined skill ratings) at the bare minimum. A Bard w/o Gjallarhorn/Duradabla ~= A GEO w/o Idris/Dunna, but still approximate equals when equipped with them. This could be implemented by drastically raising the effect caps on songs OR converting songs to a percentage-based system like GEO/COR. Using 2x the highest tiered songs should be around the same as a directly comparable 10roll or single colure.

    - If baby steps are needed to examine the impact of improved songs, start by baking a comparable amount of the new effect increase into "Song+" as Idris buffs GEO. (ie: IF Idris buffs Fury effect by ~40%, then each Song+ should increase Minuet effect by ~10%. This merely grants parity between G.horn & Idris, which is meant to be the equivalent to relic weapons anyway.) This would also allow for lower base effect caps which would raise the value of Song+ equipment, while maintaining the play-value of existing REM-type equipment and not destroying the viability of these jobs for players w/o REM.

    One notable side-effect to raising the skill caps on all buffs would be to make the current Job Point gifts that grant skill provide more than zero benefit which is the current state of things.

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    * Debuff songs:
    - Bards have always been somewhat limited in what debuffs we can provide, so I'm not going to ask for much in this category. Please provide us with some hard info so we can properly gear ourselves for the ones we have at least. It would be helpful to have some sort of idea on how much m.acc/CHR/skill we should be aiming for in order to gear properly for these to avoid being resisted. If applicable skill has also been long since capped, then adjust the caps to modern day levels. Given our limited selection, it would also be helpful to increase the effects of Requiems and Threnodys to obvious usefulness.

    - Perhaps add a few more debuff songs. We really do have a limited selection to choose from, so maybe something unique or "sound-based" like a casting-interruption (not an actual Stun please.. "Discordant Note"?) or increased vulnerability to player debuffs or increased vulnerability to skillchains. The point being that we need to increase our worth in a group context, so some sort of unique debuff(s) would be a step in the right direction.

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    * Job Points / Gifts:
    - As mentioned above, bard has some zero-benefit gifts currently, namely the skill+ bonuses. Raising the applied combined skill caps will make them do something, compared to the nothing they do right now.

    - Job point categories are overly specific and lackluster. Perhaps combine Minne+Minuet categories into a "Physical Song Effect" category which increases the effects of Minuet/Minne/Madrigal/Prelude/Mambo by 1-2 per level. That frees up a category slot which could be replaced with a "Magic Song Effect" category which raises the effects of Etudes/Scherzo/Mazurka/March/[status resist songs]/etc by 1-2 per level. Then replace the Lullaby/Requiem categories with "Debuff Song Effect"/"Debuff Song Duration", which would then apply to all of our offensive songs. Changes like these would make our Job Points more desirable than the current state.

    - Gift-wise, it is rather disheartening that the only new songs we get are Threnody II. In fact, other than skill+ bonuses, we get a pitiful number of gifts that are actually relevant to the job. Maybe a new tier of Etudes that give an impressive stat bonus could be slipped in somewhere? Or even 1-2 tiers of "All songs +1" or the like. Give us something that doesn't make us sigh in resignation please... I would gladly give up physical accuracy bonuses to accommodate them and I'm sure that the vast majority of serious bards would too.

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    * Equipment:
    - Why are there no equipment sets from Eschas/Reisenjima that are actually good for bard? We're talking about the final zones/content here, there should be something! You only put us on equipment that is designed for healers and/or have no augment paths that help us. No job should be limited on gear selection to only sets that buff a possible support job but provide no benefit to the main job.

    - The Aeonic instrument needs at least "All songs +2" to have a chance of being useful. The effects of Honor March are not enough to offset the loss of potency that using it causes, and should be increased to match the highest available tiers of the appropriate songs in addition. Aeonics are touted as being in the same class as Relics, Mythics, Empyreans, Ergons.. they should at least pretend to come close to their predecessors when it comes to power level.

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    I could actually argue that it would even be reasonable to raise bard's buffing ability beyond that of GEO/COR/RDM due to the other support jobs' ability to provide buffs AND damage, while BRD is a pure support job w/ woefully limited direct combat options, so BRD should be able to offset that via superior support. Due to the knee-jerk backlash likely to come from players who main those jobs though in that event, I would be fine w/ at least achieving parity between the support jobs for now. The end result I'm looking for here is that a top-gear class BRD should never be weaker than a low-gear class GEO.

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    I sincerely hope that the dev team reads this and at least considers making some of the suggested changes. I understand that there could be issues about rocking the boat at this point in the game, but numbers can be tweaked until we achieve a happy balance again. This is NOT a "Make my job OP!" post, it is a "Make my job NOT NUMERICALLY USELESS!" post.. The forum here seems quite dead/empty, which should tell anyone familiar w/ forum communities that there is a current lack of interest in the job (most likely due to everyone giving up on having our cries for help acknowledged.)
    I miss playing bard.
    Please fix things so that I'm not treated as an idiot for wanting to do so.
    (3)
    Last edited by Nyarlko; 02-10-2016 at 04:35 AM. Reason: addition

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