Thoughts on Leave no Trace and Balance in general

I’m a Fl4k main who didn’t mind a lot of the big changes in the first adjustment. Fl4k was busted and with no real endgame content I can understand the need to nerf, even in a PVE game. I complained at first, but I can agree that some changes were needed. After the Leave No Trace nerf I’m getting ready take a break and wait for a Steam release before taking a second look at the game. As someone that cares about the game I just don’t understand the philosophy behind balance changes like this.

I still absolutely melt Gravewarden. None of the nerfs have been strong enough to stop that.

This isn’t about looting guns (for once). My problem is everything fun about the build seems to gets taken away, and the most recent pet buffs aren’t making enough of a difference for me to switch to that build.

Melting things for 15 seconds while a symphony of ricocheting bullets (lasers?!) devastates everything around you was fun.

We got that trimmed down to a third of that. I still think there are better ways to adjust this without borking the utility of Fade Away. Namely, Fl4k’s critical damage modifier slowly approaches 0 after 5 seconds. Keep the original duration, address the damage output issue. B…balance?

“OK! Well, during my 5 seconds of godhood I can use certain guns (the Bekah was fun) and maintain some steady DPS during that window because LnT procs let me use guns with extra pellets!”

Gearbox: “The robot is still having fun! Get the nerf bat!”

We get an internal cooldown of 2 seconds on Leave no Trace. That will certainly stop the interaction above, but it also has a bunch of other consequences.

Putting a 2 second internal cooldown regardless of level on LnT is almost like not having the ability at all a lot of the time. No matter how many points you have in it, you will only see it proc once every two seconds.

I used to be really excited to find class mods with LnT on them, pre nerf you could do some crazy stuff with a +3 on a mod. Now I know that stacking this skill has no advantages. Two seconds is a long time when it comes to firing bullets. How many seconds do you end up shooting if you grab a gun and start firing? Over the course of an average clip you are looking at maybe one or two shots added? Maybe this chance is to push you toward snipers? But the problem with that is the undisputed best sniper rifle… is basically an automatic AR?

The ‘Calls’ each have the same ‘if you crit, put bullets back in’ mechanic on them. I have those guns. Those are now the best guns to use during Fade Away. Every other gun I liked using during Fade Away just isn’t as good now because I will have to reload (an issue because Fade Away is significantly shorter). Gearbox, you didn’t do anything other than make me feel like I have less options and force me in a direction.

It feels like whoever is doing the balancing doesn’t actually play the same game as me. A lot of these changes to Fl4k seem like overreactions. We still have characters and items that are broken. I can’t see the overall the numbers, but I can tell you as a player that this isn’t where you want this character to be. Whoever is doing the balancing needs to be looking at the actual impact of playing the character as an individual, not just looking at a pool of aggregated data and YouTube highlights.

Thanks for reading if you got this far.

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I really hope that GBX is reading all of these. And while this is about the 100th topic on this issue, I hope we keep seeing them until the devs respond.

If their goal was to have build diversity this failed utterly. All it did was take a great skill and make it so bad that nobody uses it at all.

Beyond that, it hurt build diversity by steering players towards using particular weapons (calls) if they wanted to keep running their build. In a game with a billion guns they should be opening up skills so more things are viable and fun to try. Not narrowing the field.

It also completely failed if their intent was to cut down on his boss killing prowess.

But the biggest thing, and my main issue with this nerf is that it killed a lot of fun for a lot of players. Was that their goal? A balance change if done well does not produce this sort of response. Literally nobody is happy and it turned a lot of people off the character and game. Not a good look.

Even if you’re not a flak user it should concern you. If it can be done to him, it can be done to your favorite character too.

I really hope they reconsider how they “fixed” LnT. There were so many ways that they could have toned it down without going so far as to make it entirely useless. But hey. What do we know. We’re just the people who paid money to enjoy the game. Too bad their “fix” made that more difficult for a lot of flak players

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