- Jun 2, 2021
- Reaction score
As for how to make the Squad Leader profession shine, I have one general suggestion (1.) that I fully believe should fully implemented, another suggestion to be implemented in order to prevent the exploitation of the Squad Leader profession via its powerful buffs and abilities (2.), as well as an additional suggestion in order to help incentivize playing the Squad leader profession and to reward players who fully dedicate themselves to the profession (3.).
- Firstly, allow Squad Leaders to use their group buffs and other abilities even when group members are outside of the 100m radius, but do not allow those outside of the 100m radius to receive the benefits of the buff. This is by far the most restrictive of the conditions for Squad Leaders to utilize their abilities and I believe to be one of the simplest and most effective solutions to the problem of the profession being weakened. As it currently stands, Squad Leaders already have a 100m radius where group members who move outside of it lose the benefits of the buffs but regain said benefits once they reenter the radius; but so long as one member of the group is outside of that radius, the Squad Leader cannot use ANY of its abilities with the sole exception of Paint Target. I would simply propose the ability for Squad Leaders to use their abilities regardless of the distance of group members, but only allow those within the 100m radius to receive the benefits of these abilities.
- Implement the Leadership skill as intended. For those unaware, the Leadership skill gained from the Squad Leader profession is intended to affect the power of one's buffs and abilities. As it stands, however; all Squad Lead abilities grant the full benefits of the ability regardless of your Leadership skill. I feel this would be a major balancing factor for the profession as it would prevent players from simply taking a single branch "dip" into the profession for major abilities such as High Yield (which grants a +25% damage buff to a single ally) or Steady Aim (Grants +250 Accuracy to the group). By implementing Leadership as intended, this would mean only Master Squad Leaders would be able to grant the full benefit of their abilities while preventing those who would exploit the profession's abilities from gaining a powerful edge over other templates and professions. This would also have the added benefit of the Squad Leader bracelet that grants additional Leadership, Group Burst-Run Efficiency, and Called Shot Bonus to become a viable option for players who do not wish to full commit to the profession to enhance what abilities they gain from it. However I also strongly support a hard cap of 125 to the Leadership skill, as this is the amount granted by mastering the profession, to prevent Master Squad Leaders from enhancing their abilities to absurd degrees while also ensuring that reaching the skill cap is fully accessible to all players.
- A bit more of a controversial proposal that I am sure will be heavily debated, but allow Squad Leaders to use their buffs and abilities in solo-play. The possibility of this change being exploited by both PvE and PvP players would be all but certain, however I would propose locking the ability to buff one's self without a group behind the Master Squad Leader skill box in order to prevent its exploitation. By doing so, it would ensure that only players fully committed to the profession and willing to commit 121 (58 of which are used on prerequisites) of their total 250 skill points would reap the full benefits and abilities of the profession. Additionally, I have received and agree with feedback that should a Squad Leader solo-buff; their buffs should have a reduced effect in order to incentivize group play. As for how much these effects should be reduced, I believe that is a decision to be discussed between the dev team and the Hybrid profession senator, Though I would suggest a 20% reduction. Squad Leaders being able to buff themselves without a group also has precedent dating back to Live SWG and the Combat Upgrade as evidenced on the Pre-NGE SWG Wiki here. In order to prove the legitimacy of the precedent of Squad Leaders being able to use their abilities outside of group play, I have provided a screenshot of the wiki page's history as well as the time and date of the writing of this proposal below in order to prevent tampering with the wiki page to either prove or disprove the legitimacy of the former precedent.
I have addressed the justification for each of my points above but to reiterate:
- By allowing Squad Leaders to use their abilities without requiring everyone in the group to be within their 100m radius, it vastly frees up a Squad Leaders ability to function in a group without having to purposefully reposition and possibly put themselves and others in danger for the sake of being able to effectively use the abilities players have made a heavy investment into.
- By implementing the Leadership skill as intended, it would introduce a major balancing factor to the profession in order to aid in preventing players from exploiting the profession and its abilities. By linking the power of a Squad Leader's abilities to their Leadership skill, this would effectively prevent players from granting the full benefits of their Squad Leader abilities without investing further into the profession or investing in special equipment that grants bonuses to Leadership.
3. By allowing Master Squad Leaders to use their abilities in solo-play, players who fully commit to such a group-oriented profession would no longer be punished for doing so and would in fact be rewarded to a reduced degree. By also locking the ability to solo-buff behind the Master box, it would prevent players from exploiting the profession by taking a dip into it for a single ability to only use in solo play.
As it currently stands, no other profession is as restricted as the Squad Leaders when it comes to the ability to use their bonuses and abilities to the point that the profession is often relegated to a player's 2nd character as a pure buff-bot paired with Master Doctor or Combat Medic in order to follow their 1st character and grant buffs and heals. It may also be worth noting that as of the 2021 Restoration 3 Retrospective, Squad Leader is the 4th least mastered profession overall (not including Chronicler) and the least mastered combat profession. By implementing the proposed changes above, I fully believe that the profession would not only grow in general usage but also viability in both PvE and PvP spaces. If I have put half of my skill points in acquiring and mastering a profession, why can I not gain any benefits or abilities from it without jumping through hoops and having to play babysitter to ensure the entire group is in range of me in order to use any of the abilities granted by my profession?
As it current stands, there is a general consensus among the few dedicated Squad Leaders I have spoken with on Restoration 3 that the profession is far too restrictive. For those unaware, Squad Leaders are able to utilize a single group-wide buff, one single-target buff applied to one member of their group, as well as a targeted debuff applied to enemies in order to better support their groups in combat. However, Squad leaders are only able to apply these buffs and debuffs so long as ALL of the following conditions are met:
- Squad Leaders must be the leader of a group with at least 1 additional player character.
- No droids or holograms are members of the group (with the sole exception of Paint Target).
- EVERYONE in the group must be within 100 meters of the Squad Leader in order to utilize ANY of their abilities (with the sole exception of Paint Target).