Community Q&A: March 23rd 2012

It’s that time again- time of the week for the Community Q&A. Here are some updates on yesterday’s questions and the answers from BioWare Community.

Mksaccount: Are there any plans on adjusting rage timers in hard mode Flashpoints?

Gabe Amatangelo (Lead Endgame & PvP Designer): The team continues to tune Flashpoint bosses based on metrics and feedback. Bosses that are a ‘spike’ in the progression curve (e.g. when a second boss might be more difficult than the last) are being addressed in one way or another, be it increasing their enrage timer, decreasing their health, extending the cooldown of control abilities, etc.


Bendog: Are there any plans to make the lower level planet commendations ‘Bind to Account’? It would be nice to hand them off to another character.

Damion Schubert (Principal Lead Systems Designer): We’ve talked about it, sure. It’s something we considered as we added in the Legacy System. However, right now we know that other aspects of the Legacy System will act to speed up the leveling experience for alternate characters. We want to see the state of the game in terms of leveling speed and itemization power after the core Legacy System goes live with Game Update 1.2 before we potentially make that change.


BurdoThePious: Is there a reason why the Commando / Mercenary Advanced Classes do not have an interrupt ability (eg. Mind Snap, Distraction, Force Kick)?

Georg Zoeller (Lead Combat Designer): Yes. The lack of an interrupt ability on these Advanced Classes is a purposefully designed weakness in their ability arsenal. At the current time, adding an interrupt to the Commando/Mercenary would increase their combat utility, especially in PvP, beyond what we are comfortable with.

That said, this issue is one we’ve re-evaluated with every major patch and will likely continue to revisit in the future. It is not inconceivable that an interrupt may be added to these Advanced Classes in a future update, especially if more PvE content is introduced that relies on a certain number of interrupts being available in a group.


Niktika: Can you please explain some of the reasoning behind the healing nerfs? It almost seems like every healer is up in arms regardless of their class.

Georg: Sometimes it’s hard to hear this, but the change to healers you’re referring to was, quite simply, a result of them being too good. When one healer is close to target performance and the others aren’t, it’s natural to think that the logical course is to buff the underperformer and leave the over-performers alone. I want to dispel that notion and explain why it isn’t always possible.

Here is some advice about future questions so be sure to read over this if you are planning to submit your own questions for the next Q&A:

Looking forward to future Q&As, we had some feedback from the development team which we wanted to share. While questions about future potential features in the game are always welcome, many times the answers will be non-specific, as development is always fluid. We don’t want to disappoint you with continuously saying ‘soon’ in reply to these questions.

Instead, the development team would appreciate more questions about features or systems currently in the game, or questions about the philosophy behind why development decisions were made. The development team feels they can really give you some in-depth answers to these sorts of questions, and overall we feel they will be more interesting answers than talking in vague terms about future features. This is not an attempt to shy away from questions about any aspect of the game, but rather a request to delve deeper into design philosophies and to get some more information on how things currently work in-game.

Lisa Clark

Lisa has been an avid gamer since she was old enough to hold her first controller and a game writer for more than a decade. A child of the Nintendo generation, she believes they just don’t make games like they used to but sometimes, they make them even better! While consoles will always be her first love, Lisa spends most of her gaming time on the PC these days- on MMOs and first-person shooters in particular.