Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Shared Topic - Like a boss!

This is a shared topic from Ye Olde Blog Azeroth.

If I were a boss, what would I be? What would my encounter be like?

I should just say "Faction Champions" and endpost right there, but Faction Champions isn't really my style of encounter despite the fact that I play just about everything. I don't find it fun at all.

For this, I'll merge a few of my character designs with my own personality and design an encounter.

Basic Idea Concepts:
As I recently blogged in an offtopic post that my very first Myers Briggs personality result was INTJ and that the Keirsey Temperment was "Mastermind". The idea of making a 'boss' that is a manical 'mastermind' amuses me a lot.

My Paladin was created with a mini-theme when I picked his professions--(Goblin) Engineering and Jewelcrafting. The theme? "All the coolest toys." My paladin is a wacky inventor with cool devices that do occasionally backfire, backfiring is something very WOW engineering, unfortunately I couldn't really figure out ways for things to backfire. =(

You can't be an evil mastermind without henchmen or minions!

My hunter is also an Engineer (Gnomish). He's something of an assistant to my paladin so it's logical that he'd be the minion. As a hunter, he'd likely have a pet, or several pets, at his side assisting him. As an engineering themed encounter, and taking some ideas from the mechanical pet by a stable master in a iron dwarf camp near Ulduar and from all the little critter pets of old (mechanical whelplings anyone), the hunter would likely have mechanical pets.

My hunter is a bow hunter, personality-wise, he wouldn't be using a gun, which is counter to the idea of an engineering encounter. Hunters already have shots that do cool things, why not take it one step further? As a nod to the DC character Green Arrow, a gnomish engineer hunter could very possibly have a bunch of cool trick arrows he's invented.

The Setup
Why would my characters somehow become raid bosses?

They're working on an invention that's either caused chaos or that will cause great chaos. Perhaps the Bronze Dragonflight feels may interfere with the time stream and that the invention must be destroyed before things get screwy. A time machine would be a good reason for the Bronze Dragonflight to go pwn some screwy elf inventors. You know if there was a time machine I'd have to make a bad Dr. Who / TARDIS reference.

The Heroes have been sent to trash my lab before I make a mess.

Mechanics: It's kinda like...
Nefarian - BWL (Class calls. Omg I'm blasting you and you can't hit me, lolol. Oh, and minions!)
Mimiron - Ulduar ( Lots of cool devices, stupid to avoid)
Mr. Smite - Deadmines (I'll have to improvise!)
Teron Gorefiend - Black Temple (Individuals having to do gimmicks, requiring everyone to do what they're supposed to at random.)
High Priest Thekal - Zul'Gurub (Having to kill 2 or more targets at the same time or they'll revive, defeat minions to piss off the boss and make him engage.)
Thaddius - Naxxramis (Do gimmicks to increase dps or hard enrage will eat your face)
Halazzi - Zul'Aman (Saber Lash)
Leo the Blind - Serpent Shrine Caverns (One portion of the fight tanked by ranged class, others in range will eat damage.)
Auriaya - Ulduar (Kitties!)
Illadari Council - Interrupts and moving out of the lolconsecrate.

The encounter would be pretty easy, annoyingly long, gimmicky as hell, placing stress not on tanks and healers so much as everyone doing the right thing at the right time. There would be a hard enrage that would wipe the raid if the encounter is not completed in time.

The Encounter: Boys and their Toys:
The heroes enter the scene.

The Paladin and Hunter are going about their business, tinkering with things, occasionally working on a metal box, tall enough for someone to stand in, with a door.

Moving forward into the room prompts a lolRP skit. The two walk over and admire the box.
Paladin (imagine Cam Clarke (male belf) voice): It's just about done but... *sigh* gray just isn't a good color for it. I think we should paint it!
Hunter: ...
Hunter turns around and looks at the heroes.
Paladin: I know, we'll paint it blue!
Hunter taps Paladin on shoulder then points at the heroes.
Paladin turns around: Who are you? What are you doing in my lab?
Paladin says to hunter: You, remove these fools immediately.
Paladin goes back to tinkering.

Hunter summons a mechanical lion pet and engages.

Phase 1:
Mecha-Cat - Abilities:
  • Saber Lash - Requires two tanks. Managable damage, but could eat the face of a non-tank who happens to get in the way.
  • Headbutt - Occasionally charges a random member of the group, stunning them for 3 seconds before returning to the tanks. Will not headbutt the person tanking Hunter.
  • Note on Agro - Mecha-Cat won't return to the tanks if it runs into the ranged and one of them has greater threat than the tank. This means that players may have to watch their threat, the ability to go to 30% above the tank's threat is not acceptable.
  • Mecha-cat has 40% more health than Hunter.

Hunter - Abilities:
  • Disengage - Entering melee will cause the hunter to disengage, he cannot be killed or tanked by melee.
  • Rocket Arrow - Occasionally launches a rocket at his range tank, reducing their health to 30% and applying a dot that ticks for a few thousand fire damage per tick, will also apply to anyone within 10 yards of the tank. Target must be healed to full or the dot will remain. This means that DPS must stay beneath the range tank on threat, or there's a chance the entire raid may get hit by the rocket. It's manageable to heal the ranged tank through this, but it can be quickly out of control if others are eating it too.
  • Flame Trap Arrow - Occasionally launches a trap which creates fire on the ground at a random raid member (can throw at tanks). Deals a mild but annoying amount of damage. Applies a stacking debuff that cannot be removed which reduces damage done by 1%, can stack up to 100 times. Let's punish DPS instead of healers for DPS standing in the stupid for once.
  • Serpent Sting - Applies a dot that ticks for a few hundred per tick. Can be removed.
Every 30 seconds the hunter uses a gimmicky trick arrow of some sort, stuff to avoid:
  • Ice Trap Arrow - Occasionally launches an ice trap at a random raid member. The ice block can be dispelled (magic effect) - or DPSed down.
  • Wyvern Sting - Puts a random raid member to sleep.
  • Poultry Arrow - Polymorphs someone into a turkey. You were the turkey all along!
  • Adhesive Arrow - Puts a pool of glue on the ground which freezes someone in place for 30 seconds or until cleansed.
Defeating Phase 1:
Both Hunter and Mecha-Cat must be 'killed' within 10 seconds of each other or one will revive the other with 50% health. The cat can be destroyed, the hunter will kneel down, injured.

Paladin will cast a protective bubble around the Hunter when he has 100 health remaining then engage the raid... kinda. More LOLRP

Paladin throws a bomb at the raid which stuns everyone for X seconds (for lolRP purposes) and deals 1000 damage.

Paladin: How dare you hurt my assistant! Who do you think you are?

Phase 2:
Paladin is bubbled and cannot be attacked. He activates assorted machinery and randomly starts one of somenumber of events.

Paladin's Abilities for Phase 2:
  • Spanner of Justice - Paladin throws an arclight spanner at a random raid member, stunning them. It's hammer of justice, but ranged with an engineering twist. Can be dispelled.
  • Alteration Ray - Paladin will use a device on a random raid member, turning their abilities against them. Consecrate will heal enemies, threat building abilities of tank classes will act as threat reducing abilities. Heals will do damage, damage will heal. If a class is hit with the ray, players will find they can attack allies (to heal them) and heal enemies (to damage them) or do threat building abilities on others (to boost their threat) or threat reduction abilities (hand of salvation, cower, feint) to boost their targets threat.

The Mini Gimmicks:
The Paladin will activate three weaves of Mini Gimmicks via a handy remote control. Gimmicks can only occur once per attempt.
(Special thanks to Tombstone for making a few suggestions to get my wheels turning again. I wanted to do more than three and have them be random choices but coming up with more miniboss gimmick fights is harder than I thought.)

Option 1: Lasers and Clockwork Robots:
Paladin summons a mechanical device that creates clockwork robots.
  • The robots come at a near constant rate.
  • One type of robots will pick a random raid member and walk towards them. If they reach their target they will explode and banish that player from combat for 10 seconds.
  • Another type hit very hard and must be tanked and do an annoying pulse ability that deals damage to the entire raid from time to time.
  • The device has a laser mounted on top of it and a barrier that prevents the device from being targeted directly with hostile attacks.
  • Laser will target a random player in the raid and follow them wherever they go.
  • The bots do not fade immediately when they die.
To defeat the miniboss one must kill the adds then have the player who's focused with the laser kite it so that the beam hits the dead trash. When it does, it reflects back at the source, taking away 5% of the machine's health. When the laser has been kited into shooting its-self to death the device will explode and conveniently stun the raid to buy time for the next gimmick or Phase 3 to start.

Option 2: Whelps! Left side!
Paladin summons a mechanical dragon, it flies down from the upper level of the lab.
  • Mechanical Dragon does all typical dragon things: Tail swipe. Breath. Cleave. Fear (any one within 30 yards).
  • Mechanical dragon creates electrified spots on the ground that gives a debuff that increases damage done by targets standing in it by 10% and but reduces healing/threat by the same amount. Stacks. The debuff lasts 15 seconds. Also deals an increasing amount of damage which quickly goes out of control if folks stand in it for too long.
  • Summons mechanical whelps from around the room. If whelps reach the raid they will explode and deal massive damage to folks nearby and likely cause a wipe and must be gunned down by range.
Obligatory destruction stun occurs when the device is destroyed.

Option 3: The Hatebunnies and Doomkittens:
Paladin summons a creature spawning device.
  • The device has its power core on top. There's a cone that prevents it from being in line of sight of range. The device is destroyed when the power core is destroyed.
  • The device summons bunnies. Cute little pastel bunnies.
  • These bunnies explode when they reach a target.
  • The damage they do is mild but increases by the number of people in range when they explode.
  • When the bunnies explode they put a temporary gravity reduction aura on their targets. These people can jump into the air and pew pew the power core.
  • When the aura fades, if they're within melee range of the power core, it'll knock them back off of the device.
  • The device also summons little mechanical kittens of doom. They come in assorted feline colors.
  • Like the bunnies, they explode but their damage works opposite of the bunnies, the more people in range (3 yards) the less damage they do. They'll hit someone for 100% of their health, hit two people for 50%, 3 for 33%, etc.
  • The mechanical kittens give players an aura that doubles the damage they do.
  • The device pulses an aura which increases over time. The sooner the power core dies, the sooner the fight is over.
Obligatory destruction stun occurs when the device is destroyed.

Phase 3:
After defeating four of the Paladin's inventions, the Hunter has been healed to full and is ready to go again. This time the two have a shared health pool and it's not very big.

The Hunter has all the same abilities from Phase 1 but lacks his pet.

The Paladin continues his abilities from Phase 2, though uses his alteration ray less often.

New Paladin Abilities:
  • Consecrate - increases the threat of people standing in it and reduces damage done by them by 20%.
  • Holy Light - Paladin heals himself (and the hunter too). This can and should be interrupted. He only has one spell school so it's possible to keep him locked out.
  • Hammer of Justice - Paladin hits the person that has threat on him. He switches to whoever is second in threat. Stun lasts 20 seconds and can't be removed.

Once the Paladin / Hunter have been reduced to 100 health the Paladin bubbles the duo.
At this point, the device the Bronze Dragonflight sent you to destroy becomes attackable. When it's burnt down to 75% (then 50, 25) the duo are back on their feet again and you start again.

After the device is destroyed and you've burnt the duo down they bubble-hearth out.

Chromie appears, breathes fire all over the paperwork in the lab, destroying blueprints and other information required to recreate the device, presents a chest-o-phat-loot, and you win.

Of course, I can't dream this up without thrashing around with what my characters would wear if they were bosses. I already had tinkerer costumes for them, however, I thought it might be fun to add some extra armor for them. This is what I came up with:

In closing:
To Blizzard's encounter designers. I salute you, what you do isn't easy.
Please keep coming up with cool, fun, and awesome encounters for us to explore.


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