Welcome to the first official balance change log for Breakaway. There has been a lot of movement in balancing since our debut at TwitchCon. The amount of data received since then has been tremendously helpful in identifying areas where we could improve characters in the game. Our goal, as always, is to balance characters and add more utility whenever we can to our cast. Let’s dive in.
Alona has been through multiple iterations in order to balance her powerful healing abilities. Overall we found that her healing made it so she was essential to any team that wanted to realistically win. This was never our intention, her healing should aid the team but not necessarily carry the team. To that end here are the changes to Alona.
Alona’s Primary attack has gone through significant changes. The most significant change is that she now uses a reticule to aim instead of firing the direction she is facing. The projectile fires in a straight trajectory that no longer bounces. This change was to unite projectile characters into a uniform control scheme that wouldn’t need to be relearned when swapping ranged characters.
Alona’s ability to heal was found to be super strong. She was able to sustain most of her team by using her abilities and spamming her primary attack. This is part of the reason that she was indispensable to winning teams. Thus her primary attack will only hit enemies now. The healing element was removed so that her abilities became the most reliable way to heal allies.
With reticule aiming Alona’s ability to deal damage became an issue. She drifted into more of the fighter archetype rather than support. To combat this archetype drift the damage from her primary attack has been reduced.
The change to reticule aiming made it so Alona is much more competent as an attacker as well as support. We have reduced her health a bit to make it so an Alona player will have to buy suitable equipment in order to front line a fight.
Alona’s Ability 1, Radiance, was created to be her bread and butter healing ability. The cooldown was reduced in order to make this the go-to ability for healing longer sustained fights.
Sun Burst, or Ability 2, was doing a lot of small area burst damage that was also causing her to drift more towards a fighter archetype. To combat this and keep her primarily as support we reduced the damage and lowered how high her damage here scaled when buying attack equipment.
Not many know that Anne Bonny only wears an eye patch to make her look more menacing when playing poker. Overall Anne Bonny has survived pretty handily when it came to balancing changes.
The Ability 1, Long Shot, and her Ultimate, the Hull Buster, were scaling with attack equipment far too quickly. This made countering her very difficult. Both of these attacks have a long distance advantage and high damage. Between balancing her with damage or distance, we opted for damage since her defining quality is her long range.
Morgan Le Fay’s personal bodyguard… or is he? While the Black Knight has the most listed changes, overall they equate to just being tuned to be the most armor-centric tank that we have.
Black Knight already comes with natural armor. His armor was so high when we took into account armor gained by equipment that it became apparent that killing him was far too challenging, especially when healing was in the mix.
Black Knights Ultimate, Dark Call, was made to be disruptive. This task was achieved. Too well in fact. Combined with cool down equipment the Black Knights Ultimate was becoming too disruptive and common making him far too potent at running interference when at an opponent’s relay. To combat this we’ve increased his cool down to from 20 to 25.
We’ve found that with the right equipment the Black Knight could a little too easily slide from being a tank archetype into more of a beefy fighter archetype. Both his base damage and attack strength for his primary attack has been reduced so he still fits firmly within the tank archetype.
Black Knights primary attack still wasn’t feeling right after we dropped his damage output. To smooth this out we have allowed him to finish his primary attack a little sooner. Also the windows to branch into his abilities have been increased. Note that whenever ticks or frames are mentioned it is a measurement of 1/60’th of a second.
Black Knights Ultimate, Dark Call, makes it so Black Knight can be damaged, but he will not go into a reaction when struck. That combined with a decent move speed was making him more of a juggernaut than we had anticipated. Reducing his move speed slightly still allows him to juggernaut around, but just with a tad less efficiency.
Over the course of Buildable testing we found that the Siege Engine was being used mostly as an additional attack rather than its true purpose to destroy other Buildables. To realign the Siege Engines purpose we have lowered its damage to characters from 50 to 25 and made it so characters would not be launched when it runs into them. Damage to Buildables remains the same as before.
The timing was too critical for the Black Knight to use Ability 2, Cruel Summons, and benefit from a follow up attack. The amount of time that an enemy is in a reaction was increased to give Black Knight more of a window to bully his opponents.
Morgan’s style and mystique has quickly turned her into a fan favorite, although we kept getting a common comment about her. “What do her abilities do?” This comment was generally after someone had played her which is bad. To this end we have adjusted her abilities to have more sudden cause and effect over opponents.
Just like Alona, Morgan’s primary attack now uses a reticule to aim instead of firing the direction she is facing. The projectile fires in a straight trajectory. This change was to unite projectile characters into a uniform control scheme that wouldn’t need to be relearned when swapping ranged characters.
The new slow down effect in the Circle of Spite gives her more utility. The initial effect of making enemies take more damage was great for assisting in team fights, but we wanted it to be more disruptive. The slowing effect can disrupt a team push or simply cause multiple opponents chasing her to rethink that endeavor. This effect can be great to slow an enemy that is attempting to zip through a maze of Buildables.
This change took great consideration. Originally Aura of Silence would be active for a length of time and during that time only those that were within the effect would be silenced. We found that opponents could simply dodge out of her zone of control and reengage with a dash ability or ranged shot. Aura of Silence as an AOE burst guarantee’s five seconds of silence on any opponent that is struck by it.
Rawlins is the most mobile ranged attacker currently in the realm of warriors. While considered a ranged fighter, his damage was off the charts making him more of a ranged assassin. His changes reflect bringing him back into the ranged fighter category.
Over many hours of play we determined that most of Rawlins sustain comes from his ability to move around the field. In light of this his health has been reduced.
Rawlins damage was scaling so fast that he was quickly becoming an assassin by the time the 4th tier of attack equipment was bought. The attack strength of both his Primary Attack and Ability 1, Power Shot, have been reduced so that at least small parts of his opponents could still be found and buried after a match.
Let’s get the Sparty party going! Spartacus is a staple to most teams due to him being the only melee fighter archetype currently available. Being a melee fighter means that he is designed to deal damage, put opponents into reactions, and sustain to a moderate degree.
We found that when Spartacus performed both his primary attacks he would push an opponent just far enough so they could not counter attack. Then when they whiffed their attack Spartacus could slide right back into them and hit again with his primary attack. The solution to this was to reduce the distance that Spartacus can slide forward when he uses his primary attack so he couldn’t reengage without endangering himself if a counter attack was launched.
Over time Spartacus was being used more as an assassin archetype than a fighter archetype. One reason for this is that his damage scaling when with equipment was rather high. We’ve reduced his attack strength for both his Ultimate and his Primary Attack in order to reign him back into the fighter archetype.
Our lovable head crushing Viking and thrower of anyone not nailed to the floor needed only one tweak to his repertoire in order to balance him out.
That’s right, the only thing this big lug needed was to be a bit more effective at comboing his abilities. He can now go into his abilities 8 frames faster than before when branching from his primary attack. This was done to make him more effective when facing opponents one on one.