Thread: Sil-Q Review
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Old January 16, 2019, 00:10   #62
Join Date: Mar 2016
Posts: 332
Quirk is on a distinguished road
Originally Posted by Infinitum View Post
Perhaps our viewpoints differ. I mainly play melee characters.
So this does make quite a substantial difference.

I can tell you myself that Elbereth is pretty great for archers. I've been running quite a few lately in testing the overhaul of the archery tree and I've seen Wiwaxia run a couple of Elbereth archers too. Very early on, when it doesn't keep the wolves off, it's not so hot, but by the time they're wargs, they're fleeing. Late game you can make the switch to Mastery to freeze up enemies you don't want escaping, but for an awful lot of the game Elbereth keeps many of your enemies where you want them: distant pincushions. Here's one from who managed to grab a Sil after some awkwardness on 950' led to me descending before I'd properly scummed:

Challenge doesn't really do the same thing as Opportunist. Opportunist is good at hurting and finishing enemies that are running away. It doesn't pull in cat assassins or stop breathers breathing on you. Some of what it does in terms of pulling enemies in to fight in more favourable surroundings can be replicated with various AI tricks. Not everyone has patience for that. A few quotes from other players here:
Originally Posted by ripforareason
Song of Challenge is good, very useful against cat assassins.
Originally Posted by Blinkhog
Song of challenge, the balance seems good, maybe slightly too powerful, as orc archers become easy to deal with only 2 points in song and 3 grace. It also downgrades cat assassins from a terror to annoying. I like the mechanic though and the monster stances, I think this mechanic should be developed further.
Originally Posted by HugoTheGreat2011
For the future - whatever you do, DON'T remove Song of Challenge! It works for me!
Originally Posted by
Song of Challenge is really, really good. Even at 500' - 600', I've been able to manipulate packs / archers of foes off of a simple two Song + three Grace alone. Annoying Easterling Warrior trios or Orc Captain packs are somewhat trivialized with this...

It's strong & makes my guy stronger, yeah, but I feel like I'm cheating.
How situational it is depends on whether you're consistently using it to pull enemies into corridors, in which case it's bread and butter, or whether it's more of a silver bullet against ranged types. In either case, it's cheap and decently widely taken.

Silence, Lorien, Trees, Staying you've noted as good. Freedom we both think niche, Delvings is clearly overpriced on the way down, and is only widely taken on the ascent. Thresholds is potent, but distinctly overpriced, and the ward side doesn't necessarily primarily benefit melee builds.

Overwhelming is decidedly better than Mastery for melee at the point you get it: with Mastery if you beat them on Will, they skip one turn, win one with Overwhelming, they're stunned for 2d6 turns and doing half damage. In practice you will win some against most late game enemies with 10 Song. Melee characters however just don't tend to take that much Song and I'm not expecting that to change.

Mastery currently largely supports Elbereth archers and Lorien sneaker throneroom shenanigans. I don't think it's easy to make work on melee builds at all and the cost of entry is high.

A number of the songs you call "a bunch of interesting and situationally good abilities" just aren't good on the builds you play - Elbereth, Silence, Lorien. And that's fine, but the game isn't just about melee brawling, and these songs would not materially help melee brawling. They require different playstyles to shine. There is no real issue with any song up to Lorien except Delvings in terms of people taking them and playing with them, and if you didn't look at when people took Delvings you might not be certain of even that from simply seeing winner skill lists.

The issues with the songs at the top of the tree are not necessarily going to be fixed by not having to pay for abilities. Thresholds is fun but requires a different play style of its own, and I think it needs to be cheaper to be used in builds. Overwhelming hasn't persuaded people to upgrade from Staying so far, and I'm not sure shaving the cost of upgrade from 2900 to 1900 is going to do it; it probably has to retire. Mastery needs a lot more song than 11 to be good, and reducing the cost of entry from 8100 to 6600 still probably doesn't make it all that viable for melee fighters.

So no, I don't think the suggestion to stop paying for abilities does enough to fix the cost issues of the expensive ones, and I'm not going to touch on the generally unhelpful direction of the language stuff; the last thing we need right now is to divide the song tree further.
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