This is all WIP and subject to change
Being in Early Access, I think that now is the time to experiment and make big changes. In the build I’ve been working on since the v0.0.8 patch, I have been trying out cooldown based abilities with charges. I figured I would make a post to just let everyone know what I was up to.
Here is an example of the UI (WIP):
With this system, Mana and Stamina aren’t being used. The bars are still present in the screenshot because I simply haven’t removed them.
Instead, abilities have cooldowns and charges. When an ability is used, a charge is removed from that ability, and that charge goes on a cooldown. When an ability has zero charges left, it can no longer be used until a charge is back off of cooldown. The ability circles are made darker to represent when an ability is out of charges. In the example above you can see that Rock Shot and Rock Throw are both out of charges. Abilities that have more than 1 maximum charge have their current charges displayed inside the ability circles. Rock Throw has a maximum charge of 3 but is currently at 0 charges.
The cooldown duration can be seen by the timer above the ability circles, as well as by the circular progress bar that fills up. Flareball for example has a maximum charge of 2. In the example above you can see that Flareball was used once, reducing the current charge from 2 to 1. The charge that was used is currently on cooldown as shown by the timer and the circular progress bar. However, the circle isn’t made darker like it is with Rock Throw, because there is still a charge available, meaning the ability can still be used at this time.
The EX meter is still present and using an EX Ability still consumes 1 bar of EX Meter and also consumes a charge for that ability, putting that charge on cooldown.
While this might all sound a bit confusing, I think that managing cooldowns should make the game a lot less cluttered than managing a mana bar and a stamina bar. It makes it much easier to balance individual abilities without it affecting the other 3 you have equipped. Another thing it does is it encourages players to make use of all four of their abilities and find some synergy between them instead of using all your resources to spam a single ability. As a player I also feel much more in control since I know exactly when an ability will become available for me. In comparison, with mana and stamina you would have a rough idea but it wasn’t as precise.
I will have a lot more testing to do and still have some things to figure out, but so far battling vs AI and watching AI battle each other is just as exciting and a lot more varied.