Tree of Savior Forum

If I were the TOS game designer

I’m a graduated game designer/game developer and since I’m bored, I’ll share here some thoughts I had since a few months after ToS release.

Even with some game design concepts and a paper telling that I know what i’m talking about,my ideas may not represent all the players, and its ok, everyone plays and think differently and the first rule of games is that they need to be fun.

1- I would give a tight hug on artists, the art is unique and really really amazing.

2- A lot of classes
I wouldn’t release so many classes at once. Maybe 3 ranks on release, increasing after a few months… Is impossible to balance so many combinations, and the investment would be really huge.
Release few ranks, balance them, release one more rank, take a month balancing the last rank, release another rank. It would be clear to players that new ranks would be buffed/nerfed and create a focused feedback, what you “fixed” wouldn’t be touched, so people would be fine with previous choices.

The game became almost a MOBA, every week some balance patch changing everything. I got friends that just left because their classes was good, then bad, then OP, then bad again… and when someone leaves the game, is really really hard to grab him back ( For comparison, Google Play gives you much more rating when players returns to game or changes the score for something higher than 100 new players entering the game )

3 - More player skill and team skill based game.
I will take the RO example, where the risk/reward of team skill was really nice: A Crusader uses Devotion on some player and now you can have a glass cannon wizard protected, but the enemy Sage can dispell and turns him easy to kill. They can also cancel the enemy casts, and even use Land Protector/Magnetic Earth over other to destroys it and make the enemy take AoE spells again.

With the new, more dynamic movement mechanic ( Click, WASD, key arrows and jump ), and a lot of new classes, this should be a HUGE golden nugget for this game.
What I see of the game is everyone spamming spells to deal huge DPS, but no interactions, I can’t feel classes interacting with each other… its like The Avengers movie, you have some people together called a “team”, but everyone fights alone.

4- Boss Mechanics
Again, it looks like the movement mechanic don’t belong to this game, you can move freely with a joystick, jump, but you have almost nothing that rewards a good movimentation, bosses only drops some traps that you need to avoid and has an ultra slow pacing, almost like you play with TimeScale 1 and all the monsters are with TimeScale 0.2.

5- Stats
Too simple, you don’t need to plan your build, its everything linear. For sure being a Path of Exile like where you need to spend days planing the build is not healthy, but all the builds in ToS are similar regardless the content you play or how you would like to play.

If I want a glass cannon caster priorizing be top damage everywhere, I should be punished for it and need some teammates to help me ( Team skill ) with buffs, tanking, removing CCs, mitigating damage, etc.
I personally love the Attack Speed / Reduce Cast Time mechanic, so I would put a scale bonus not only on 10 points, but on a 50 too, so each 50 SPR reduces all cast time by 10%, each 50 DEX increases the attack speed by 10%, each 50 CON reduces CC duration by 10% and so on…

6- Spells
Looks like every single class is focused on a linear flow, ToS don’t have any reactive feature. You use your spells, your enemy uses theirs and thats it.

When skills has cooldowns, I always think about procs: When you use X,Y,Z spells, you have a chance to make another spell to have no cast time, or deal increased damage, or apply some extra effect.

Another point is about full support classes, I can’t see suporters or tanks bringing more eficiency to boss than another DPS, you can deal massive damage, buff yourself and still tank a monster. So why use different classes and roles ?

7- Meta game
I see Tank classes, Heal classes, Buff classes, but the meta is always a damage class dealing massive damage and tanking everything in the same spot. You don’t need to move, you don’t need a tank, neither a healer, don’t need to interact with others, don’t need to worry about your spells, everything you need is an endgame gear.

I think this is the worse aspect of ToS: you have movement, you have class variety, you have stats, but you don’t need to move well, don’t need a class variety in groups, don’t need to plan stats, just stand near the boss and spam your spells while your life is nearly full even if you take all the traps.


I really really really want this. A lot of friends that leave the game went out because 2 problems:

The first one is this one that you told. Tanks and “non-healer” support build classes get useless on the game. It feels like if all the players play or damage dealer (DD) or Healer. DDs doesnt need bursters to reach the cap of damage with a lot of skills, and DDs only need to be healed to resist easily against bosses and field monsters (they doesnt need a frontlaner/tank that takes the agro to make it easier/feasible).

Players should need to have 1 tank, 1 full healer/healer-burster, 1 full burster/burster-DD and 2 full DDs on the party (i think) like in old times.

The old circle class system is the second reason. I’m agree about that current class system is more intuitive and easier to understand than the old one, but the old one was giving a lot of different good choices… a lot of good builds… Now there are a few usefull choices, all the people play the same stuff.

About this second problem, i want to propose to mix both, old and new class system. How? taking back the old circle class system but keeping the part from the current system that makes players able to choose the class that they want to play (in the old system, players could choose between some choices that differ depending on your “class rank”, you couldn’t choose classes from higher rank class than yours So in the mixed system, you would be able to choose the first circle of the class that you want each time, plus the next circle level of the current classes that you have already (keep the circle system but remove the class rank limitations from it).

This mixed system would keep the “more intuitive/easier to understand” from the current system plus the higher amount of different usefull builds from the old circle class system.

Thanks for your contribution with this post, i hope they listen to you and make something about it.


There’s more to this.

Nowadays the game has been focusing on competitive content (WBR, JS, Boruta, Giltine, etc.), and in this kind of content, you have play meta builds or you’ll be at a disadvantage. When the old class system existed, there was much less competition.

The current lack of build variety also has to do with the lack of synergies between classes., with every patch Imc has been removing more and more class combos in favour of streamlined builds.

For example, Hackapell has been somewhat compatible with Cataphract for a long time. It was not a meta build, but it was fun. Yet Imc removed the synergy for no apparent reason. This ‘streamlining’ also very apparent when you look at the wizard rework, which separated classes based on element.

I guess they want the game to be easier to balance, and one way to do that is by limiting build variety. But for us players, it just sucks the fun out of the game.


what comes to my mind here is PvP.
Honestly, this game being so grindy and rng based is lowkey whats keeping everyone playing. Players have goals: to finish their end-game equips. But what else to do once you got your end-game gears, youll get bored eventually and quit.

Whats needed here is a good PvP content that can challenge players skills, purely skills. Not based on gears or meta builds, but how good you handle your playstyle vs other players.

Too bad, right now, the focus of the game is all PvE - running same dungeons over and over again, doing brain-dead cm runs, murdering tel harsha on his own turf, spending money on gachas.

Always good to see some fresh meat getting into it.

Absolutely. I even joke saying that you could strip away all the gear of an hardcore player and it wouldn’t last a half a minute in any game content, yet giving a completely noob can do the regular content if it has average equipment. It’s even worse as you are forced into a fixed option for your classes instead of going picking what your character role is, adapt to the content or just try different and interesting strategies.

There’s a simple reason why that happened, the combat itself is shallow. All enemies have the same base behavior with the only “special feature” being their attacks, that just have some hitbox and damage variance (rarely we see a dash) and that’s it. There’s just no element that rewards players for trying to approach enemies differently nor any reason to go for something that isn’t raw damage.

As a direct result the game turned into a DPS arms race that only takes healers to keep the party alive, and an occasional tank for specific content like raid boss fights. Control classes have no role in PvE combat (after all, the threatening bosses are imune to disabling debuffs) and were left stranding.

The only depth in the game is positioning but that’s too little for a game that has 80+ classes and can be beaten through brute force.

Yes, skills should have tool value not be an all time answer to anything that is thrown at you, again an issue with the combat lack of depth that doesn’t allow these things to happen. There’s just no need for complex decision making or punishment for failing on that test.

It’s not really a good idea… One of the advantages of the old system was that players were forced into picking classes that covered the basic package required for their characters to be effective through the whole game, and limited players from being overwhelmed by their advancements if they built it on the fly. Breaking this rule would only benefit hardcore players and bring a huge burden to the balance and design. The old system also had an issue where lower rank skills can’t have secondary scales that are both good and satisfying due the skill level cap at 15, yet any attempt to work around it makes things either trivial or less intuitive.

It’s hard to expect any decent PvP if they can’t even make PvE content good.

The main issue remains the same, ToS is a game without a foundation and all we get are empty promises and fancy toys that stop being fun after a couple of uses. It like having a car dressed as a plane, it’s neither a good car nor a plane. Instead of trying to make it fly they just make it look more like a prettier plane.

The only reason I wouldn’t entirely double down on the idea of player skill reliance is that mmos have a hard time balancing player skill and things like ping for the bad connection playerbase. I’m not sure how I feel about team skill personally, with the current population size.
PvE could definitely be more interesting, though.

Like I love more difficult games in general (I have a very hard time paying attention w/ easier games) but I think the devs here have a very hard time balancing difficulty. Things are either too difficult (and usually due to dps… time constraints, or mechanics playing into it indirectly), too tedious (too much effort for little reward, or just plain annoying on purpose), or an absolute cakewalk.

I also think it’s entirely possible to make PvE and PvP interesting enough for non-competitive and competitive players respectively, without them leaking into eachother in the ways ToS makes PvE content overly competitive, or tries to encourage it.
But I admit that I wouldn’t know the answer for making the PvP side more enticing. I couldn’t care less for competitive playstyles, personally.

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Player skill / team skill based features are not about competitive playstyle, but about how you win.
In articles about how to make games, you’ll see a lot of “Players don’t want to win, they want an epic win”. You don’t need to always try to be better than other players, neither have a souls-like game, an epic win is when you dodge that mortal mechanic when boss has 1% life and kills it, when in a WoE your guild is almost wiped and you and the few members remaining can keep the emperium alive for that last 10 seconds until the war ends, or when you make a huge mistake, but recover from that black-bar life and keep fighting.

I agree that work hard for items should be rewarding, but if all the game becomes ultra easy with that gear, I personally can’t find fun.

For the internet connection, developers can use client-side prediction, lag compensation and a lot of techniques that mitigates very well latency issues ( CS by example is a FPS that relies entirely in reflex, but you have nice teams that wins tournaments with 100ms above the enemy team ).

It doesn’t has to be strictly on execution side. Player skill reliance can be understood as the combination of decision making and mechanical execution, they can be applied in different ratios.

I’d argue that it would to focus more on the decision making side and have a couple of classes that have better payoff for mechanical precision (like Fencer original design). Games are way more fun when you have options to interact with it that generate different outcomes, ToS rarely asks players to retain a skill or present an opportunity in which a given group or type of skill is more suitable than others.


@GM_Francis i think that you already take a look of this post but i mention you here because i cant know it.

I think that it should be listen.

Moreover (and obviously) i’m agree with this post.

They should let any class to have the option to be good for PVE and PVP, not just gimmick classes like Alchemist, Pardoner or Chaplain

Tos have some skills with extra effects when you combine with other skills, but yea, could use some more combos

With most skills being either attacks or buffs, TOS no longer has the flexibility it once had for building really great class combinations.
It’s been too shallow since the start, but at least in the beginning the power creep wasn’t there.
You were still required to hit enemies many times to kill them, and some skill combos could really change the way you play, in a good sense.
Good were the times of Double Chance and Gevura being used to multiply the damage of the next attack(s) instead of being bland attacks, with Gematria and Notarikon having to be used to see which one would yield the better result.
Now Double Chance is gone, Gevura is just a weak damage boost and a cool down reduction against boss monsters with a bad mechanic that requires many hits in a short amount of time.
Clone is worthless without field farming, same with Resetting and Clairvoyance, since collections were never reworked to spark interest in them again, and abandoned completely for the new maps.

Exploration is also no longer interesting because new maps are only covered with main quests, no collections, barely any zemyna statues, no gimmicks, no treasure hunt function (pendulum/detector/shovel/treasure chests), no interesting background effects (merry-go-round/water slide/elevator/bridge/etc.), no dungeons/buildings that can be entered.

Fishing is dead(afk content for your char to do when you afk for popolion points), planting&harvesting is only possible in the guild hang out, the exploration quests were discontinued, no more books to collect, the card battle was already removed in open beta if my memory doesn’t betray me, the merchant losing his boxes on certain maps(Fedimian suburbs is the only one I remember) has been dead forever,too.
This game has nothing left aside of grinding towards endgame, you can do all the quests that haven’t been removed/were broken, but what’s the reward? Higher adventurers journal level and some small items.
Leveling from 440 to 460 already surpasses all the additional stats you can grind tediously from quests (the side quest stat gains should be hugely improved, same with the title collection reward and the collection boosts so that they outperform the level gained rewards by at least 2:1 if not 3:1), what’s the point of doing all that for just meager 50+ stat points, +8 in all stats and some low bonus of 2-4 to selected stats?

It’s showing old players who actually engaged with the game over their time playing that it was all but a waste and won’t be used anymore in the future, where everything is about beating the main quest and leveling to new caps to attain new levels of power that far surpass everything offered to the player.

Don’t get me started about the design of the classes,class trees and skills. I know that some trees are made to be more offensive or more supportive, but is there a reason that nearly all of the classes in that tree are working that way? There is some much variance that could be exploited to create good party options, but instead most options are rather discouraging to include in a party because it’s just another damage dealer or healer that does little else.
Mixed builds are discouraged by solo content and the heavy costs that come with switching between builds (arts reset,accessory exchange,weapon exchange,card exchange,ark exchange to name a few possible scenarios).
Other MMORPGs have the option to save multiple builds per character (most times behind a pay wall but whatever helps helps) to battle the problem between PVE content a-, content b- and PVP content-related balance, but tree of savior has nothing of that sort, further discouraging taking special classes for special needs into your build.

Then there is the time limit. Why do new contents outside of raids always come along with a time limit? Why are you not allowed to take longer if your build requires it because it’s not a top-geared DPS build? Challenge Mode, Division Singularity, Bernice, Weekly Boss raid,Sole Hunt, Dimensional Collapse Point all give you a hard cap to clear.
I don’t understand why they cannot for example have Dimensional Collapse point without a time limit (or at least scale the time/monster stats with the number of party members so you can solo clear if required) or allow Weekly Boss Raid to go beyond the required time to accumulate total damage per run until you die,give up or reach the 30 billion cap or however high it was, but the damage counted towards the ranking will be timed when the time has run out.
Is there really a reason to keep people away from getting all rewards when there are people who can get all rewards in 2 runs?

The whole focus on easy to throw at you content that is basically the same, requiring less and less cooperation, leaving only the biggest wallet warriors at the top to reap all the rewards while the others get nothing or are hard gated from content/rewards just because IMC once again boosted the monsters defense is ridiculous.
Make the player choose the scaling of the defense and rewards so he can easily get all the rewards at 2 billion defense by hitting the monster with tons of additional damage,at least that would be fair.

When you look at the management decisions of IMC, they seem to act schizophrenic.
On the one hand, the want to finance themselves via whales you pay to win because they have money but no time to spend on the game, on the other hand, they want players to play a lot of different contents every day/week, wasting lots of time for crappy rewards.
I still remember the old Token benefits,which included additional content entries. Now it’s all about extra loot in auto-matching contents.
I wonder what they really want, or if the content release is some sort of internal battle between the management and the actual coding developers. If they are at “war”, it would explain why there is no developers roadmap.

The 2020 roadmap showed that they wanted to bring back TOS into the direction of the way it was in 2016/17 with more field activities and quest focus. Then it didn’t happen and players were disillusioned about what to expect from IMC at this point. The last two road maps were not really spot on anymore, with 2019 being about 2/3 to 3/4 fulfilled by 2020 leaving out many things that were planned and then scrapped. Instead, they threw half-episodes at the players (meaning unfinished content updates), which is a bad sign.

Bringing back the good parts of TOS is probably only possible if the Management is replaced completely as their monetization plans backfire again and again. Finishing the 2020 roadmap would probably be the first start toward a better TOS, with more content for everyone, not only the whale players who like to raid and whack dumb bosses for quarters of an hour.