Psyker tweaks for more variety and better staff-gameplay

So just some thoughts after a bunch of testing around…

Overall i still think Psyker is fine and very good balanced, but since i´ve played both, force weapons and normal ones, i would go so far to say that the staves just lack behind compared to guns.
I know some poeple will be like “wtf”, but guns will do their job and mostly bring more and faster damage to the table. You miss the buffs a vet have, but there are also no real buffs for force-weapons in the whole tree but Psykinetic´s Wrath. The rest is still about quelling, BB and the use of the ultimate.
So based on this experience i got from testing and playing different weapons / builds, i would like to tweak the staves and some feats.

  1. Staves should be able to generate warpcharges in general with a little percentage on kill. Since all of them work different and those with sick waveclear will have a huge advantage, the percentages should be different.
    So far Purgatus / Voidstrike could´ve something like a 2% chance and Surge / Trauma 3-4%.
    This will open different ways to build across the feats without relying on BB too much while maintaining warpcharges.

  1. Unless you play Purgatus, which has a good damage pool against everything, you´re more or less forced to play a melee weapon with armor-pierce like the axes, chainsword or atleast a forcesword where you spam the special all day long.
    I´m fine to say that the Voidstrike is fine aswell, because the overall possibilites the staff offers are great and not every staff should be able to do everything anyway. But i would like to see some tweaks / buffs to Surge and Trauma…

a) Surgestaff

  • This one is the most limited if we talk about the targets. the range is limited and it just can´t compete that good with the others if we talk about waveclear.
    That´s why i would like to see this stuff becoming the first choice if we talk about armored enemies, Ogryns, maybe Mutants aswell.
    It shouldn´t be on the level of Bolter, which is still broken in my eyes, but it should be the Bolter under the staves. This will not just make the choice to pick it more of a thing, it´ll also let waveclear-melee weapons shine while playing a staff and doesn´t rely on those armor-piercing weapons i named above.

b) Traumastaff

  • This one has great cc, but it clearly lacks range, somewhat damage and eats a lot of peril.

  • First of all i would like to see a change to the target system. It´s weird to look into the air while channeling, just to reach enemies further away. This should be shortcutted and more on point.

  • Second… since the secondary action seems fine with its utility, i would like to see a little buff on the primary “bolt”, which offers a synergy to the secondary. The bolt could mark the hitted enemy up to X meters of range. Now the player is able to cast the secondary on the marked enemy on the same range.
    Such a change will of course need a bit more of skill / micro-management, but it´ll help to increase the range you can use this staff and can help the team to push in such poor range-fights we all know about.

As been said, i wouldn´t touch the other 2 staves yet, because they do their job fine and while one have answers to everything, the other have a huge waveclear and range.

  1. Now about the feats… atleast 2 of them are too situational, and others should be changed for more gameplay-impact in my eyes.

a) Psykinetic´s Wrath

  • This one should switch the place with “Mind in Motion” and change in its core. Instead of just giving us 5-15% more damage while sitting on high peril, it should actually buff how staves work like:
    “Choosing this perk will tweak the secondary attacks of all staves.”

a1) The Traumastaff could work as before, but after the initial explosion, it could cast a second ring of explosion for some extra damage (no cc involved).

Like it´s shown on the picture, it´s just a ring around the first explosion and won´t hit the center a 2nd time.
This could help for a bit more waveclear, but without the cc that already let this staff shine.

a2) The Surgestaff could set the initial target under electricity and if the player casts the lightning again on the target, then it´ll cause a little explosion.

a3) The Voidstrike could get a chance of 15-20% or so to leave a little flame-wall on the ground ticking with 2-3 stacks of soulblaze or so.

a4) The Purgatusstaff could give some damage-resistence like 2,5% per burning enemy, which stacks up to 10 times and lasts 10s.

It´s just some brainstorming, but it could help to deal with some drawbacks and to bring a bit more to the table than just “more damage if…”.


b) Based on the fact the “Mind in Motion” is now in the level 10 feat tree, it should combined with “Inner Tranquility”. Just let this perk get ride of the bit of movement punish while still giving 5% Peril resistence. This will be a good trait for staves for sure.


c) Now we would´ve “Wrack and Ruin” and an open slot left in the level 10 tree.

c1) Wrack and Ruin needs a little rework anyway. This trait is way too situational right now and the 2 stacks of damage aren´t a big deal, unless you throw the ultimate with soulblaze on top of it.

Since we don´t have something that assists guns, i would like to see this trait becoming one. It could be like “bullets are praised with some psyker-magic”. This could actually be like “critical hits or headshots will cause soulblaze on enemies up to 3 stacks”.
Such a trait would let soulblaze more shine and also rewards skill more in general.

c2) The last missing feat could be around BB as wrack and ruin before, but more in kind of “BB stacks its damage based on peril”, which will offer to reach better breakpoints, and "kills with BB on elites or specials will grant 2 stacks of warpcharges and increase maximum amount of stacks up to 6.


d) “Warp battery” will now store 2 more warpcharges, not 6 as maximum. This means if you skilled the new BB feat at level 10, you can have up to 8 warpcharges.


e) “Kinetic overload” should be tweaked to be like “gaining a warpcharge OR casting BB successfully will…, but every enemy can only be targeted once with soulblaze”. This change would make this trait less situational, but wouldn´t be broken if we talk about soulblazestacks on bosses, crushers, whatever without a 2nd source.


f) “Quicken”… The utility is there, but it should be tweaked to lose only half the warp-charges and based on how many you currently own, the higher the cdr is. (2 stacks = 25% / 4 stacks = 40% / 6 stacks = 55% / 8 stacks = 65%)


g) “Ascendant Blaze”… it´s one of my favorites, but with the changes to be able to gain 8 warpstacks and overall being able to get more soulblaze-stacks from different sources, the stacks should be locked on 5 and you´ll only lose those 5 stacks, even if you sit on 8.
In this case Ascendant Blaze will still do its job, but won´t punish poeple wo wants to run on high warpcharges.

I´m sure such changes are clearly not perfect and there are some poeple who will always prefer stats instead of utility or “gimmicks”. But i do think that my brainstorming will do a lot positive to Psyker without changing its current core. It´ll also allow players to engage on the feats with more variety, it´ll let the staves more shine in comparison to guns and even BB-user will find something with more impact. (Numbers written down might be need some tweaks, they´re just some examples based on the personal balancing experience.

I hope i haven´t forgot something…

As a Psyker that doesn’t fear high peril I would be pretty gutted if they made this change. Once you get a feel for overflowing peril without exploding it is basically 15% damage boost. In my mind 100% is basically the same as an extra 4 warp charges.

Those 15% will only effect force-weapon-attacks so. Given to the change i would like to see, you´ll get better overall new effects on each staff, so the only weapon which won´t be effected by this change is the force-sword. (Which doesn´t need those 15% tbh)

And if you don´t want to run them and stay on your high peril, you could now, with the rest of my changes, go up to 8 warpcharges and that even faster since staves and BB could grant you more.

I do get your point and that´s what i meant with “i know some players will always prefer stats”. But the tradeoff should be more than fine, especially since you don´t have to play all day long around high peril, unless you use the new BB feat. Staves should be more comfortable…

There already is a feat that does pretty much that, but for any kill within coherency.
Even without that feat, you already only have to use BB like 1-2x per minute to maintain max stacks, since the stacks now decay one by one instead of all disappearing at once.

This really is a non issue.

It already is pretty strong against armored enemies and completely disables anything it hits. Even though it might not deal incredible damage against unyielding ogryns and mutants, it does not need to, because it stops mutants mid charge, opens up bulwarks and stops reapers from shooting and from running away.
When it comes to damage against carapace armor, it is definitely better than voidstrike and purgatus.

Of course it is not as strong for wave clear, because it is an aoe cc staff.

Also, in regard to damage against ogryn especially, remember that we have Brainburst. So you can not argue that you have to bring specific weapons to be able to deal with those.

This would absolutely suck. Because getting max 5 instead of 6 stacks would massively lower the kill power of the feat on damnation difficulty.
Why would you limit it to 5 and not to 6 (as it is right now)?

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It´s about to offer more options to gain warpcharges out of BB and the 2 existing feats, especially since you probably want to take different feats , than the 4% and 10% on BB, for staves.
Also those options will make more use of the new kinetic overload and the 2 ultimate perks relying on warpcharges.

You really need to look at everything together what i´ve written down.

Your suggestion would pretty much make the 4% feat wortless.
WC are already incredibly easy to keep up since the change and if staffs would build WC by default, what would be the point of having the feat?
Unless you want to use the top row feat on lvl 30 and spam your ult on cd all day.

No it wouldn´t. 2-3% is like 2-3 warpcharges per 100 enemies. You don´t kill 1000 enemies alone just with your stave per run, maybe like 250 enemies overall just in 1 run.
It just prevents from changing to BB more than necessary and offers other skill options. The 4% are across 4 players, not just you and 1 weapon.
(So in summary it´s like 8 stacks from staves VS 40 stacks from the feat per run.)

And you forget that not everyone is and will run staves on Psyker. They can still rely on the feat, while poeple who play staves can use the other 2 more often.

Because the other changes will offer 2 new ways to get way more soulblaze stacks. Those 2 feats that are currently pretty useless due to being too situational.
Also the combination with staves +15% cdr could be pretty broken in the end, that´s why it should be a bit more limited and rely on more than just 1 source to stack above the 5.

It´s still not as good as it should be in my eyes. I would like to see it tweaked to be more outstanding against it to let waveclear melee-weapons more shine on Psyker in combination the other staves doesn´t really offer due to their designs.

Gawd dammit why did u tell them all our surge secrets :frowning:

Sustained fire needs to be removed from the staff blessing pool or entirely reworked, imo. Also I’d like the primary fire from all non purgatus variants to be more attractive. I basically only ever weave it in with the voidstrike.

Yeah, obviously if you aren’t running force weapons you will take a different talent. But I am running them, so your suggestions would just be an overall nerf to my build and style. Please don’t nerf psykers…

It is much easier to get to 100% peril than it is to get 4 warp charges. I already run warp battery, so I’m sitting at the equivalent of 10 WC when fully powered up. Six WC is slow enough to build up after AB so the idea of 8 isn’t appealing at all. In fact, that 15% dmg from peril already acts a bit like your suggestion to have AB not use all your charges.

With my build warp charges are basically rng (main source is AB), sometimes I get them, other times not, but the more I kill the more I get. That 15% from peril is doing constant work though and actually helping me build those charges. And you want to replace it with a damage mitigation buff on my staff… If you’re taking damage with your purga staff out you’re doing something very wrong.

You’ve said WR is “just stats”, but it actually functions to reward a high risk playstyle, which makes it interesting to play around imo.

I think the better way to make staves more interesting is to improve their blessings. Just looking at the gap between purga blessings and the zealot’s flamer blessings is a bit of a head scratcher. Imagine a 20% chance for elites to explode when dying to warpfire, or a up to 50% damage bonus the longer you channel, or ignore 40% stagger resistance on primary fire.

I can only say what i said to flawless, you need to look at everything together.
There are no nerfs, there are tweaks that bring damage from one to another point and even some buffs.

Yes you miss up to 15% damage on force weapons, but since you can bring new abilities to the staves that bring different damage-sources and utility, then it´ll outweigh the damage-loss you´re talking about.
Of course the force-sword is not part of my idea since i think it´s one of the most balaned weapon imo, i play it a lot by myself, but it could be added in another way.

Also looking at the other featchanges… you could go up to 8 warpcharges, and this way easier due to doublestacks on BB and some extra stacks from staves. This will increase every source of damage and it´s always there, not just by sitting on high peril. Meanwhile high peril will actually grant better breakpoints for BB.

Yes it´s somehow high risk / high reward. But it´s not really something that has an impact to me since it´ll only grant a bit of more damage.
I would like to see extra abilities and possibilities, not just stats. As you´ve said:

Stuff like this keeps stuff more interesting and somewhat funny. But i also don´t want it on blessings, because it´s harder to catch all of them and also to balance them across the board. Something like that can and will be fast a metachoice. Also a weapon shouldn´t be “playable” just because of blessings. They should assist already existing builds, not being mandatory to call your build a build.

Removing 15% damage from peril is a big nerf though. Saying I can get 8% back on the very conditional situation that I go from 6 to 8 stacks is no consolation at all.

I can see how your suggested changes would benefit your playstyle, and I agree in principle that Psyker needs a serious once over. I’m just pointing out that your suggestions will amount to a nerf for some playstyles, mine for example.

You suggest using BB more, but that is forcing me to change my playstyle, because you will have nerfed my current one. I BB as little as possible, just to take out snipers or shotgunners if they’re out of burning range, so the idea of needing to do more BB doesn’t appeal at all sorry.

My purga staff also already functions to give me WC, like your suggestion, through AB, the more I kill with warpfire the more charges I get. Maybe the other staves need something like that, but ideally not in a way that ends up nerfing purga.

It seems to be the design intent of fatshark to have certain blessings be very important and build defining. They clearly aren’t meant to be balanced, some are better than others and I don’t see that changing. It is what it is, so I just wish they’d include the psyker’s staves in that process and give us a few significant blessings to make some new interesting builds possible.

I do get your issue about it, but as been said, since 3 out of 4 staves would get new damage options (on top, it should clearly outweigh your missing 15%. Probably not if we talk about single-target breakpoints, but if we talk about overall damage with the extra aoe, explosion or high range.

Also they could still bring exactly this high peril trait as blessing. This would be something what i mean with “assist a build”… similar to X% crit while Y etc…

EDIT: Maybe there could also be a passive on force-weapons or Psykinetic Psyker, which increase their damage by 0,5% per 10peril aswell. If it would be on the weapons itself, then it could be tweaked per staff to balance them better on their own.

Sadly they went that route. The last patch shows that they don´t want to nerf / buff based on basestats, they´ve actually written down that they´ve adjusted blessings to bring the slightly worse weapons on the spot of the very good / broken ones.
But this is nonsense tbh… we can already beat damnation without blessings anyway. And if there are like 2 or 3 flat stat options, then they´ll be in 90% of all cases the metachoice compared to the more utitlity options or those behind drawbacks like “perfect dodging” or so.
And weapons with a sick baseperformance will outshine other weapons with perfect blessings, once they get their own blessings, anyway.

EDIT2: Btw just saying… the stuff above is just some brainstorming on my experience and some issues others have with Psyker. I don´t know about all playstyles and it´s not possible to cater everyone anyway. Staves are not my main-playstyle on Psyker so… so no, some changes doesn´t fit all my preferences. But i still do care about it since it´s actually easier to run damnation down with a gun.

All i tried is to make more use from actual feats that aren´t great imo. On top i tried to offer as much variety and build-possibilities as possible, so poeple can either go for a bit of gamechangers and utility, or they go the route of raw damage and breakpoints.
But all in all it shouldn´t be exeggerated to keep the choices somewhat balanced.

That´s my core idea behind it, even if i find some buffs a bit too much personally.