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.
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…
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.