Improving Alani's Helix Choices

Every character has useless helixes right? Well, I want that to change for Alani (and every other character, but this is for her), so I started brainstorming on how I could make some of her less chosen helixes better. Note that I’m not trying to make her as OP as she was. I’m just trying to improve her options. Here’s what I came up with:

• Level 1:

LEFT- Soothing Mist: Increase healing done over time to 70 health per second
[A majority of the time Splash Zone has simply been the better option due to greater healing and a larger radius. Despite having a shorter cool down and being instant cast, that’s still only 210 hp over three seconds and your teammates are probably only going to be sitting in Riptide for only half that time. This change, however, will help you provide better sustain healing and emergency healing (in comparison to the current numbers) if your teammates are trying to run away. It can be buffed later if need be.]

• Level 2:

LEFT- ???: Replace Pressure Gradient with a helix allowing Geyser to now Bind minions (this does not include major enemies like Thrall Mercenaries or Elite Bots)
-75% Damage Decrease
(This change will allow Geyser to be used on enemy minions for better wave control. The damage decrease will decrease its effectiveness on single targets like Battleborn and prevent it from being better than the Right helix option. In addition, it might make Level 6 helix, Channeling, more useful. It will also allow Geyser to be more useful in PvE.)

RIGHT- Surface Tension: Change the current effect to cause targets hit by Geyser to take 15% additional damage from all sources for 2 seconds.
(The current effect is almost useless and is only chosen because the other option is completely useless. The new effect will create an interesting choice for Level 2 between better single target damage or better crowd control.)

• Level 3:

MIDDLE- Pressure Gradient: Replace Kinetic Diffusion with Pressure Gradient.
(Moving Pressure Gradient to this slot will allow early synergy with Level 2’s LEFT helix and create more intense decision making. You can go for increased safety and greater reach for better single target engagements with Pressure Wash, more minion crowd control and increased Osmosis stack generation with Pressure Gradient, or better sustain and rescue healing with Overflow. In other words, do you want to be more effective at damaging, controlling, or healing?)

• Level 4:

LEFT- Wet Blanket: Riptide slows enemies that are hit by it.
+3 seconds slow duration (basically the same thing but with a stronger slow +15% slow).
(With the separation of movement speed and attack speed slows, I thought that this might be warranted.)

RIGHT- Ride The Wave: Replace the current effect with an attack speed slow for enemies standing in the wave and an increased movement speed bonus on Riptide.
up to +3 seconds attack speed slow, +15% movement speed (The attack speed slow will be about the same as it was before on Wet Blanket.)
[Ride The Wave is almost useless compared to the other two options. This is mostly due to it removing a lot of utility from Riptide while limiting the amount of times you would want to use it (i.e. only when you want to escape or the rare occasion when you’re trying to reposition). Having increased movement speed will achieve the same result of making a better escape for yourself as well as allies. Not only that, but the attack speed slow also helps with making sure your allies stay alive.]

-or-

RIGHT- Ride The Wave: Add an attack speed slow to the current effect. (The attack speed slow will be stronger than it was before on Wet Blanket.)
+3 seconds attack speed slow

• Level 5:

LEFT- Kinetic Diffusion: Remove Karakafruit Express and replace it with Kinetic Diffusion.
(Karakafruit Express is too inconsistent and unreliable for the damage increase it provides. Alani does plenty of damage with her basic attacks anyway. This helix is simply not needed. Now you will have to choose between movement speed, healing, or damage reduction to keep yourself and allies alive. Besides, all three helixes require you to have max Osmosis stacks—the theme fits perfectly.)

MIDDLE- Extremeophile: Stagger the increased healing over 4-5 seconds.
(The problem that Extremeophile has right now is that you can overheal targets during combat. This change makes it so you still receive the extra health while you are being hit.)

• Level 8:

LEFT- Aquifer: Further reduce Geyser’s eruption time to somewhere around -35% to -40%.
(Ol’ Trustworthy is usually picked over this option because it increases the likelihood of both hitting a target and catching multiple Battleborn. Aquifer only helps with the former. Perhaps a greater reduction in eruption time will be more enticing to players without making it the strictly better helix.)

MIDDLE- Pressure Valve: Replace the current effect with a new one. Alani’s Geyser no longer Binds enemies but can now be summoned instantly.
+15% damage
(No one chooses Pressure Valve because an increase in the chance to Bind a player is far superior. Maybe an instant knock up without the Bind can compete. Note that this still works with the Level 2 helix, Surface Tension.)

• Level 9:

RIGHT- Water Proof: Increases the distance Riptide travels and increases the Push effect.
+50% increased distance, +50% increased Push
(Stagnant Pools is clearly the better option as it literally doubles the duration of Riptide, meaning longer slows, longer Hasten, and more damage. Riptide already travels a good distance so +50% didn’t really matter as much. Giving it a greater Push effect will enable you to save allies by pushing enemies farther away or keep those minions from getting to your sentry or grinders. Having the increased distance will go great with Pressure Wash, while the increased push will go great with the proposed new Level 2 LEFT helix.)

Well, that’s all I’ve got. I hope you enjoyed reading some of my ideas. :slight_smile:

I’ll admit I’m not a giant Alani player (though she’s definitely one of my favourite supports), so that’s why I’m not going to comment on everything at the moment.

I can definitely get behind Level 2’s changes. It’s downright a dead level most of the time.

I really kinda want to make Ride the Wave work somehow though. It’s just…so fun, if clearly not right for her gameplay. Honestly, the addition you’re suggesting but even higher could just make the frequent drawback of moving with the wave justified. Another idea is making Ride the Wave give a buff for more knockback on next Alani’s quick-melee attack - if Ride the Wave is then being used to get away or aid an ally as they probably should, the knockback can definitely come in handy. Also, does Ride the Wave ignore collision detection? I can’t remember.

This isn’t really going to do anything for emergency healing because it’s over time. Secondly, it’s important to remember that the area that Riptide effects is much larger than Geyser’s and starts healing immediately and the duration can get doubled later on (which ends up doubling the healing from Riptide). Stagnant Pools already increases the healing on Riptide from 153 to 306.

Also, Riptide recharges faster and is basically used on CD, too boot (if you get Wave Shock) so it’s going to have much better uptime than Geyser will. I still take Soothing Mist over Splash Zone.

There’s a bunch of different things that could be done with the level 2 helices but something most definitely needs to be done. At the moment, because they shrank and shortened Geyser and have still done nothing to address how Geyser only affects players, level 2 is a wasted helix choice (if only because you can even benefit from either choice because they only apply to bound targets, which means it’s only players and only for 1 second).

I’m guessing you’re not aware that they removed the Osmosis stack generation from Pressure Wash: all it does now is increase the range of your attacks. The level 3 decision, at the moment, is greater range (offense), conditionally greater movement (mobility, make the normally slow Alani crazy fast), and better Wellspring (healing). It’s actually a very well designed helix level with all 3 choices being legitimate and effective at what they’re supposed to do.

What? Wellspring heals for something like 800-1000 hp at level 10, and Overflow reduces that range to 920-1000. I don’t really see much use in it personally because I’ve never really had a problem with Wellspring healing by default, but, if you want to make Alani a more reliable healer, Overflow does an excellent job of reducing the variability (and bringing up the average a bit).

I’m pretty sure slow is a binary effect: you’re either slowed or you’re not slowed. There isn’t such a thing as a “stronger slow”.

While I agree that Ride the Wave is basically useless, I’m curious how you can say that Ride the Wave removes utility from it (it definitely makes it more conditional by having it act as a charge-type ability but Riptide still does everything it did before). If I were going to change it, to keep it in line with the intended effects, I would probably just make it so that activating Riptide increases her move speed by 100% for 3 seconds.

[quote]
LEFT- Kinetic Diffusion: Remove Karakafruit Express and replace it with Kinetic Diffusion.[/quote]

Kinetic Diffusion would still lose to Extremophile (which itself loses out to Full Saturation, which is amazing; seriously, there’s no reason to take Extremophile other than trying to get Alani’s lore challenge done). Rather than trying to turn it into a move speed increase, I’d rather see them tweak it to be like an attack damage (or attack speed) version of Kinetic Diffusion: while you’re at max Osmosis, you do more damage or have increased attack speed. The question then becomes whether you throw the heal or keep up the damage.

Not sure this is needed. I actually use Aquifer more often than Ol’ Trustworthy in PvP because it means that there’s less reaction time for enemy players. Also, it means that, when I use it on someone attempting to beat my face in, I don’t have to take it to the face as many times, which is extremely valuable.

You seem to be forgetting your level 2 helix suggestions. Being able to rapid fire 2 Geysers, even if they don’t bind (which, once again, not really of any particular value because it’s so short) would be incredibly powerful, especially if you’re also using Splash Zone.

If the idea is faster Geyser, bigger Geyser, or better Geyser (which is what it is now), they need to reexamine what they want “better” to mean. Either have it improve the bind by .5-1 sec or increase the damage by a way bigger margin. Or give it the 15% increased damage taken for 2 secs.

The reason people don’t take Pressure Valve is because the base damage on Geyser is a joke. The same way that Wave Shock turns Riptide into a legitimate attack by making it really nice damage (or Wet Blanket makes it a stronger control), Pressure Valve should do the same thing to make Geyser “better”.

This I like a lot. Water Proof is a terrible choice. It’s got a bit of synergy with taking the non-ongoing effects for Riptide as well, which is the only reason that Stagnant Pools is amazing (if all it did was double the duration of a pool that speeds up allies that move through it, it would be terrible). Giving a legitimate competitor to Stagnant Pools would go a long way towards reducing the opportunity cost for picking the non-ongoing options for Riptide.

There are stronger slows. Miko has a helix to buff slows. Attikus has the strongest slow. Etc., etc.

Like I said, most of the time your teammates aren’t just going to sit still in the Riptide for 3 seconds. They are going to be jumping, strafing, and running in random directions. Splash Zone only takes a short moment to heal someone by 360 hp and is even easier to heal someone when you have communication with your team. The distance Riptide travels is longer, but the width is shorter, especially if Ol’ Trustworthy is chosen.

Stagnant Pools may double the duration of Riptide, but you have to sit in the pool for 6 whole seconds just to get higher healing than Splash Zone. Stagnant Pools is also at Level 9; it’ll be quite a long way into the match before you get access to it.

As for Riptide having a shorter cooldown, I had already taken that into account. With the current numbers, if you use 3 Riptides and your teammates only stay in Riptide for 2 seconds (which they probably will), it still won’t equal the amount of healing you get from 1 Geyser. Even if they stayed for the full 9 seconds for all 3 Riptides, it’s only 99 more hp than 1 Geyser which only takes about 2 seconds to use, and that’s not counting the fact that you could use a second Geyser in around the same time frame. (Riptide has a 16 sec cooldown, Geyser is 25 sec)

When I mentioned Soothing Mist being used as better emergency healing, it was in comparison to the current numbers. I wasn’t actually saying you should be using it like a full stack Wellspring heal.

I’m aware. By the way, Overflow only affects minimum Wellspring heals (when you don’t have any Osmosis generated). It’s a worse choice than the Level 2 helixes we have right now.

Choosing the other two helixes means that you can use Riptide whenever you want without displacing yourself into an unfavorable position. You can hasten allies and push, damage, and slow enemies while not putting yourself in danger, which Ride The Wave is supposed to save you from. Alani may be a resilient support, but she is still a support. If she puts herself in unnecessary danger, she risks the entire team. Using it only as an escape means that you hold onto it longer than you would if you had Wet Blanket or Wave Shock; it completely defeats the point of it having a shorter cooldown than Geyser. Besides, Wet Blanket works better as an escape right now because it hastens you and slows the enemies chasing after you.

I wouldn’t count out Kinetic Diffusion. Kinetic Duffusion’s movement speed increase means you can dodge attacks better, chase after enemies more effectively, run away easier, and rush to heal a teammate faster.

You are right about Extremeophile though. It’s not that great. I’ll change the numbers later.

The good players will be able to dodge it most of the time because they can move out of the smaller area. Most players are able to bubble opponents when they are distracted, backing up, or running away towards a narrow opening. None of these require a faster eruption time, but all of them benefit from a larger radius. But hey, if you’re that good at placing Geysers than this change won’t affect you.

I admit I had a brain fart on that one. I’ll change it.

The collision detection is unreliable. I’ve run into lots of things with it.

You can’t use Wellspring when you have no Osmosis. For everything I’ve ever seen evidence for, Overflow increases the minimum healing value for any use of Wellspring (just like Extremophile increases the maximum and minimum values of all Wellspring heals, not weaken single Osmosis Wellsprings and beef up full Osmosis Wellsprings), not uses of Wellspring when you’ve got only a single stack of Osmosis. Unless you’ve got some extremely compelling evidence that’s how Overflow works, I’m pretty confident you’re completely wrong (not to mention wtf the devs were thinking since that’s a ridiculously bad helix on its face).

[quote]
Choosing the other two helixes means that you can use Riptide whenever you want without displacing yourself into an unfavorable position.[/quote]

My point is that it doesn’t remove any utility. It adds a function to the power that changes how and when you’d use it. It still does everything that it used to do; it just also has an additional function that tweaks how you’d use it. It increases the utility but decreases the situational generality.

[quote]
I wouldn’t count out Kinetic Diffusion. Kinetic Duffusion’s movement speed increase means you can dodge attacks better, chase after enemies more effectively, run away easier, and rush to heal a teammate faster.[/quote]

Which is why I’m actually quite fond of it. At level 2. Where it is now. Where it’s a conditional move speed increase competing with increased range and improved healing instead of a conditional move speed increase competing with, arguably, the best healing helix augment in the game (30% DR on Wellspring is insane). Which is exactly why I said that it should be an attack speed/damage version of Kinetic Diffusion, which would make it compete with Full Saturation (especially if it’s upwards of 30% damage; I could even see it providing skill damage instead).

Sure you can. It just does pitiful healing. Gathering Osmosis stacks merely increases the healing of Wellspring. You can use the alternate attack whenever you want.

Anything that makes a skill more situational causes it to have reduced utility.

Kinetic Diffusion is far and away better than the other two options at Level 3. If you’re managing your Osmosis stacks efficiently, you will spend more time with max stacks than without. I mentioned that it helps with four things. Pressure wash helps with exactly two things—hitting targets from a safer distance and helping to secure damage on running enemies. Full Saturation isn’t as good as it used to be anyway after the duration was cut in half. It’s still good though.

I didn’t believe you but them I checked in game. Very interesting to know. It’s all of 50-60 healing per use though.

Something else that’s really interesting about Overflow however: it doesn’t just apply to the no-Osmosis heal. I just tested it in PvP. At level 5, every full Osmosis heal I threw at a wounded Attikus was for a constant 776 hp (no variation, repeated it 5 times); when I took Wellspring (I didn’t spend any helices until level 6), the full Osmosis healing on Wellspring increased to constant 895 (a 15.3% increase).

Apparently, Overflow isn’t just a buff to “minimum” Wellspring healing. It’s a straight up 15% increase to all Wellspring healing (at least in PvP).

[quote]I mentioned that it helps with four things. Pressure wash helps with exactly two things
[/quote]

Because every thing you mentioned is as equally valuable as every other thing you mentioned, right? Riptide has always been better than Geyser or Emergence purely because it can buff allies, heal, deal damage, slow enemies, generate Osmosis, and push enemies, right? Geyser has always been worse, even before it got nerfed (since those nerfs didn’t change the number of things it can do but rather how well they can be done). And Emergence has always been worse than either of them because it only does damage (and either slow, heal, or recharge at level 10).

Saying “it does more things therefore it is better” is a truly terrible argument because it doesn’t actually account for the fact that some of those things are going to be more valuable than others, especially since all 4 of the things that you mentioned are doing the same exact thing for different reasons.

A constant increase to your range is extremely valuable, especially for people who whinge about Alani having to get in close to function properly. A condition increase to your movement speed is also extremely valuable.

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Well that’s… stupid. They should fix that.

The same could be said for the increased range. The fact of the matter is that the increased movement speed is more useful in more situations. If you are shooting from long range with her projectiles than you won’t be in range to use Geyser.

To give you an idea of how good the helix is, just think of Miko’s move speed helixes. Despite being conditional, they were nerfed because Miko was too fast. With Kinetic Diffussion, Alani gains a whopping 30% increase to move speed while at max stacks, and as I said before, you should have max stacks most of the time unless you’re using them to overheal allies… or your allies are being goofballs and running straight into danger.

If you can dodge the enemies’ attacks, you won’t need to heal yourself, which means you can save that heal for an ally who really needs it. With that increased move speed you’ll be able to heal your teammate in time rather than half a second later when he or she’s dead. Think of Kinetic Diffusion as a way to defend yourself and your team proactively instead of reactively (Full Saturation).

The only reason Kinetic Diffusion wasn’t chosen before was because of how good Pressure wash was when it increased Osmosis generation.

I’d kinda rather have her left level 2 helix be a reveal.

I’d say the slow from Wet Blanket is enough to “reveal” (the little swirly things pop up on Pendles when he’s slowed) and catch Pendles when he tries to run.

Only if it was a reveal as soon as you placed it and kept revealing until it went off. If it only revealed when the Geyser went off, it would be basically useless (since, if you hit a target with it, they’re going to be bound and easily seen regardless). Even so, it would probably still be the worst reveal in the game because the area is so small. Maybe if it became a reveal instead of a knockup and doubled the radius?

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Or you could make it to where it reveals him around the Geyser. Kinda like Orendi’s reveal but backwards.

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Probably just has it, then. Ignoring collision detection would serve as an entirely logical improvement for it.

Buff her left level1 helix to 90~100 heal per second. Give her back her faster stacking of osmosis at level 3 and giver her surface tension a 20% damage application and she will be fine. I would suggest them to revert her level 3 and level 7 but I don’t see that happening.

This is what I had in mind. Still has the knockup, but also has a larger radius around the other one in which it reveals.

Alani could definitely use a reveal. It would fit her kit and make it so Ambra isn’t the only support with one. I think it’s a great idea

The 20% damage amplification might be okay, but the other things seem like too much. It would put her too close to where she was pre-nerf. She was still OP at that time, especially in high level play. Alani is still a top pick for most competitive teams.

Oh you mean before when she was a good character? Yeah. She was perfect before this recent nerf. GBX just has ■■■■■■ balance and doesnt know where they want Alani. Her helixes were fine(except for one) and her geyser was fine. All they had to do is decrease the helix that buffs her geyser radius by 25% to 15% or even 10%. Also there is no reason not buff her soothing mist. I always believe Alani players I run into who use that helix tend to suck with her since that option is just bad. It heals only 153 and only 306 at level 9. It heals very minimal and not enough to save her teammates or, more importantly, herself. Geyser gives a big burst of heal that has saved me many times.

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