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  1. #1
    Player Rwolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Main Class
    RDM Lv 99

    Enmity & Tanking Adjustment Suggestion

    Apologies, this is a long post, yet this topic is also not simply put. I've given a lot of thought to what brings tanks into their current predicaments in FFXI. I know there are a bunch of threads about this issue. Most notably these two threads:

    [Source Thread: March update and enmity]
    [Source Thread: DEV Suggestion to make adjustments to CE and VE - Quality of Life]

    However instead of posting in those, I feel this would get more exposure in its own thread and also hopefully not spur derailment. I personally feel the tanks in this game over the years have fallen short of this definition in the bolded emphasis.

    A tank (also known as a meat shield) is a style of character in gaming, often associated with a character class. A common convention in mobas, real-time strategy games, role-playing games, Fighting Games and MUDs, tanks redirect enemy attacks or attention toward themselves in order to protect other characters or units[/I].
    [Source: Wikipedia]

    Current Issues with the Enmity System
    I would welcome anyone who doesn't fully understand how enmity is calculated to take a look at this article. [Source: BGWiki - Enmity]

    There is nothing wrong inherently with having a more intricate difficult tanking system and enmity being a strategy. However, I personally find glaring issues with this current system working successfully that I'll touch on in multiple points.
    • Enemy hit points and damage has scaled beyond the enmity system: The scale of enmity versus enemies worked decently at level 75 and below. Monsters and bosses had overall less HP, so there was less chance of capping enmity for prolonged amounts of time as the fight would be over. Now enemies with HP in the millions is commonplace which need to be completed in X amount of time.

    • Time limit on content: Almost all current item level content is locked by time to complete. Which in turn promotes strategies that are about being as time efficient as possible. More time spent = more room for error. The vision that we should have damage dealers restrain their damage output by not engaging or turning around is not going to fly as common acceptance. Stopping damage is the only way you're going to currently keep a monster's attention on the tank even with some of the current enmity transfer. All strategy boils down to cost versus benefit. The cost to slowing down damage is too high comparative to the benefit you receive from it.

    • Genre generalization & expectations: The general expectation of a tank class is that it can tank. Tanks by gaming definition noted above redirect enemy attacks and/or attention in order to protect others. So the expectation is to some extent a tank should be able to hold enmity onto themselves to make it easier on healing. While a White Mage may rely on a Bard or Red Mage for MP sustainability and support healing. They have the ability to do their job from a base level. Support just extends their abilities as it should be.

    • Mutual desire to retain difficulty: Some players and developers prefer the enmity system not be too easy. I don't have a hard opinion either way. I do believe it doesn't have to be easy, but it should be simple. Those are different things. For example, auto-attacking and firing off some instant abilities to hold hate is easy. Anticipating party member output, balancing enmity gain versus enmity loss, and coordinating when to use high damage abilities (like SP) with enmity control is simple. Simple in easy to understand but still requires some thought.

    • Enmity manipulation made required, not a boon: Enmity manipulation should be a buff in my opinion. It is a way to support your party by increasing damage output safely and a way to assist recovery if something bad happens to your tank(s). While damage dealers shouldn't be able to go full offensive with no penalties, there should be a general threshold of moderate damage without much danger. Enmity and potential time completed should be considered when creating content and associating what the content level is. If "X" level party goes into a 45 minute timed area with a tank job. Can they complete a majority of this without stacking all of their abilities/buffs/debuffs or worse require outside battlefield buffs.

    Correcting Enmity System - "Protector" Job Trait for Tanks

    Protector – Reduces enmity upon usage of certain job abilities and magic, excluding the user. Any job ability or magic with a certain threshold of enmity generation will lower a percentage of everyone else on the enmity list to not fall below 1CE.

    I am not good with math to know what would be balanced enough but for example and clarity purposes only. Paladin uses Flash (CE: 180 VE: 1280) at -20% enmity.

    Before → After
    PLD: CE: 300 VE: 0 → PLD: CE: 480 VE: 1280
    DD1: CE: 100 VE: 1200 → SAM: CE: 80 VE: 960
    MNK: CE: 100 VE: 1000 → MNK: CE: 80 VE: 800
    WHM: CE: 300 VE: 800 → WHM: CE: 240 VE: 640

    The purpose is to allow tanks to really tip the balance of enmity by raising theirs and lowering others simultaneously. This would have to be balanced so it's not possible to glue enmity onto a tank permanently. Only enough that if a tank is using their enmity tools, they should maintain safe levels of keeping the target occupied equivalent to what is currently seen by Trick Attack and Decoy Shot. It should be possible for damage dealers to still do an excessive amounts of damage and use high enmity abilities to rise to the top of the enmity list when balanced.

    Enmity manipulation would not be absent from other jobs. By compounding the raising and lowering it should be a boon and increase in proficiency in damage and safety, not a necessity for a tank to maintain its primary function.

    Closing Remarks
    This would not be the end all be all to enmity. However I hope this will provoke positive discussion with refining it to a better state including the math of what would be a good balance to work but not glue enmity.

    There are opinions of leaving the enmity system as it is and will be in this thread as well. I ask all that agree to simply rate up the comments you agree with and just let people have their opinion. I ask all that disagree the same respect and not make it personal.
    Last edited by Rwolf; 03-23-2015 at 05:03 AM. Reason: Grammar edits and links.

  2. #2
    Player bazookatooth's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    I think it would be good if they also gave DDs some hate shedding abilities so that keeping hate on the tank is a collaborative effort and playing DD jobs would no longer boil down to spamming damage moves only.

  3. #3
    Player Selindrile's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Main Class
    BLU Lv 99
    I'm pretty happy with the new enmity system, it's not perfect, but it's a damn sight better than it was, to me at least.