There are two concerns about the current state of skill swapping and the proposed "Usable Only In Town" solution.
a) Skill swapping while fighting can be abused and is not intended
b) Limiting skill swapping to town counteracts the "Stay in the action" philosophy being pushed by the development team.
A wide response to these problems was disabling skill swapping while in combat, but a CM informed us that there is currently no "in combat" character state and would need to be programmed from scratch to implement.
There is, however, a Demon Hunter passive ability called Brooding:
As long as you have not taken damage in the last 5 seconds you gain 2% of your maximum health per second.
Without too much programming effort this could easily modified to this:
As long as you have not dealt damage in the last X seconds you can freely swap your active and passive skills.
This will provide a pseudo-combat status with minimal programming effort involved, since this mechanic already exists in the game. It will also provide a win-win situation for not having skill swapping available while fighting, but doesn't significantly take away from the "Stay in the action" philosophy.
Edited by Burnride on 10/7/2011 12:57 PM PDT
What exactly do you mean by the cooldowns exactly, Jacka? I've seen people mention two different methods before.
Method 1) a "global" cooldown on any skill used recently preventing you from switching it out immediately.
Method 2) Inability to switch any skill that has a cooldown if it is currently, err... cooling down.
I wouldn't mind the first method there, but I rather like the idea of the pseudo-combat state more. I would go even further to say that it should have timing triggers on both using attacks/abilities and taking hits from monsters, forcing the player to at least take a small break from the action to reorganize skills.
I don't think that there should be much of a worry about stacking buff skills with such methods, though, as I think Blizzard has taken care of that already. From watching a few beta playthroughs, I saw some people switch out the Monk mantra and Wizard frost armor. In each case, the buff was immediately removed once the ability was switched out.
Edited by Pesty on 10/7/2011 1:28 PM PDT
My vote is still for this:
Skill Swapping (regarding PvE):
The other idea I would have would be that you can't swap skills for 8 seconds after you've last been hit, which greatly coincides with your idea. I give you a +1.
Edited by Giraffasaur on 10/7/2011 1:32 PM PDT
It would have to be after you dealt damage, since ranged classes can fight without being hit and would be at an advantage. That's why I suggest changing the mechanic from the "Brooding" passive to dealt damage rather than taken damage
Well, they don't have to change brooding, but they can change the skill swap to be like that.
But yeah, this is probably the best skill swapping method. At least it's the best I can think of.
Threats of violence. We take these seriously and will alert the proper authorities.
Posts containing personal information about other players. This includes physical addresses, e-mail addresses, phone numbers, and inappropriate photos and/or videos.
Harassing or discriminatory language. This will not be tolerated.