Right now, when you apply a venom you apply all charges of it instantly. And you have the long recharge after that. That is one of the reasons why they have become so undesirable for me. I can’t really choose when I want a venom effect to be applied. All the stacks are given in one go, and once I have them either I don’t use them or they get applied whether I want it or not.
This would be fixed with a neat balance tool that is not being used in GW2: Skill uses.
What does that mean? It’s a type of recharge in which a skill has charges or ‘skill uses’ and two recharges: A short recharge for the skill itself, and a longer recharge for the charges.
This creates a choice between using all charges withing a short time, or pacing yourself to spread their use over time, and adds new factors for balance: You can not only change how often the skill can be used, but also how many charges can be accumulated by changing the number of max charges, and how long would it take to accumulate all charges after using them all by changing the recharge rate of charges.
And I believe venoms are the perfect candidate for trying this kind of new mechanic. By making them a type of skill with charges and dual recharges, each single venom effect application could be made a bit better, since they can be spread in time by the skill recharge, while keeping multiple uses thanks to the skill charges, and preventing too much spam thanks to the charge recharges. Letting players decide when do they really want a venom stack to be applied instead getting them all in one go with a single skill use.
For example, Basilisk Venom could change from a single target 1s stun effect that affects your next 2 damage packets, to an effect that affects all targets of the next attack (up to 5) dealing 2s stun to the main target and 2s daze to the rest, the skill recharge decreased to let’s say 3 seconds, while the recharge of each charge keeps the skills old recharge: 40 seconds.
So you could use apply the petrification again after only 3 seconds. But since you ran out of charges, you can’t use it again until after 40 seconds from the first use, and then you can either wait for the second charge to be accumulated or use it just as it recharges.
This would totally make venoms more versatile. This is similar to how wow has some of its off-GCD instant skills setup and I really like that. Like a persistent cooldown where you get a charge of the skill back every certain amount of time.
Someone who saw the idea somewhere else mentioned that they could be made to work like Mantras.
Use once to get the charges, then use the charges with a secondary sequence skill.
But I think that would not work well with thieves.
While mesmers have this “prepare the stage, then burst” deal going on, thieves are more about going with the flow of the battle, so charges coming slowly in the background passively would work better for them than leaving battle to charge the poisons.
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