Developer Diaries


January 2021 PVP Dev Notes

Hello Wizards!

Ben "Ratbeard" Durbin
Lead Designer
The usual disclaimer applies – everything in the notes to follow is aimed at our ongoing PvP efforts. PvE players are not entirely unaffected by some of the future changes we’re looking at (eg maycast and spell audits), so if you’re interested in what’s coming, read on.

January 20, 2021 Hotfix Changes

  • Players should now correctly (and consistently) receive the Opt Out prompt for a Tier or Rank mismatch.
  • PvP Crit/Block dashboard has been tweaked to further reduce the impact of Crit/Block on a match.
    • Crit Scalar increase from 3 to 8
    • Block Scalar increase from 5.38 to 12
    • COMPARE: 400 Crit vs. 400 Block
    • BEFORE: crit 64%, block 12%, crit damage mult x1.25
    • NOW: crit 70%, block 6%, crit mult x1.11
  • PvP Shadow Pip dashboard has been tweaked to reduce RNG, delay shadow pip gain, and increase value of “out-shadding” your opponent
    • COMPARE: Player A 120 Shadow Rating vs. Player B 100 Shadow Rating
    • BEFORE: Player A shad turn 4; Player B shad turn 5; Player B gets first shad ~23% of the time
    • NOW: Player A shad turn 5; Player B shad turn 6; Player B gets first shad ~02% of the time

Additional Matchmaking Changes (Hotfix TBD)

Players should not face the same opponent back to back. This fix is taking us a bit longer to fix than anticipated; it is still slated for a hotfix.

Upcoming Changes

The changes mentioned below are frequently discussed by players but are not slated for a hotfix (ie, short term); instead, these changes are in discussion for an upcoming update (Spring Update or later in the year).


Level Opt Out Prompt – Add an Opt Out prompt for Level mismatches
  • Players are grouped into “level bands” of 10 levels
  • Level bands begin on the 10s, eg, 10-19, 20-29 … 120-129
  • This means that a L129 who is matched with a L130 will receive an Opt Out prompt
No Noob Opt-Outs

The various Opt-Out prompts (Tier, Rank, Level) will not be offered to players at Private or Sergeant; these players are instead automatically opted out (ie they cannot choose to take an unfair match).

Improve Shadow Gauge Feedback

We are exploring ways to provide better/more feedback about your rate of shadow pip gain than the current gauge.

Improve Crit/Block Feedback

We are exploring ways to provide better feedback about crit %, block %, and crit multiplier (for example, on mouseover of an opponent).

PvP Treasure Card Gating

We are exploring ways of restricting TC use by wizard level to provide a more balanced PvP experience (particularly at low level PvP).

Maycast Audit

We are in the process of auditing the trigger logic for maycasts on pets, which will reduce the casting rate.

We have no plans at this time to remove maycasts entirely.

Spell Audit

Our prior spell audit was (mostly) restricted to shadow spells and high rank spells. This audit allowed Design to set clear guidelines for spell balancing. We will now continue our spell audit, to include all Arc 1 trained spells, Arc 2 trained spells, Lore spells, and TCs.

Trainable TCs

As a result of our audit, some TCs will “transition” to trainable spells (via spellements). Those spellements will be available in free-to-play areas (details TBD).

Update Taunt/Pacify to “New Tech”

Pre-existing Taunt/Pacify spells which use “old tech” will be updated to “Karamelle Tech.” (We’re being extra cautious with this one as mobs and especially bosses may rely on the old tech.)

Meta Curation

We will continue to explore ways for all schools to be competitive in PvP and to do so in a way that fits with their school identity (as originally designed). This may include expanding access to certain tools (eg bubbles), restricting access to certain tools (eg cross-school TCs), or creating entirely new spells to address perceived deficiencies.

Please let us know what you think of this update in the Forums!


Ben "Ratbeard" Durbin
Lead Designer

Dated: January 20, 2021