View Full Version : How I would have done the Defiance weapons and mod system [Wall of Text]

06-14-2013, 09:45 PM
The more frustrated I get with pulling useless legendaries and purples that are worse than greens out of lock boxes and elsewhere, the more I think about how I would have made the weapon system in Defiance. What follows is a rundown of what I would have done, angled as "gameplay mechanic fan fiction" more than anything else.

Note 1: this is heavily based on the SWTOR system
Note 2: If you don't like walls of text, byebye :)

Weapon shells
Each weapon model currently in the game would be turned into a "weapon shell". These are essentially weapons with mod slots, but no base stats on their own. All their stats, including quality(/rarity) and how they work (burst vs auto etc), are determined by the mods inserted. They are however bound to their base weapon class, i.e. SMG, AR, Rocket Launcher, etc. Average quality of mods determine weapon text color (quality).

When empty they have no quality, with the exception of legendary weapon shells. These have special effects added to them similar to some weapons in Borderlands. These effects don't make any other weapon pointless to use, but they do give a bonus that is actually usable for that weapon type. Examples include extra crit on snipers, bigger magazines on LMGs, or more peculiar things like ammo regen. This way, no legendary is ever not legendary, because they're guaranteed to be good.

Weapons shells are acquired just like weapons are now. Where you would get a purple weapon now, in this system you would get a shell filled with random purple level mods. You can retrieve individual mods for a fee, or remove them for another fee, destroying them in the process- similar to the current system, but on a per-mod basis.

Any shell can use mods for that weapon base type. Your beginner AR can use mods pulled out of a legendary weapon you get 4 months later, turning it into a legendary. You can match shells with mods to get a weapon that looks nice, or even has a cool name- like the Firestorm white AR that you get from arkfall codes that's useless to anyone who's played for more than 3 minutes.

Each weapon has a set of mod slots that can accept a certain type of mods. These are the mod slots and their function.

Weapon cores
Weapon cores decide the mechanics of a weapon. Inserting a Heavy Assault Core into any AR shell will give it a base damage of 440, magazine of 20, make it semi automatic, etc. Inserting a Fragger core into any shotgun shell will make it load two shells at a time, have a mag of 8, shoot in bursts of two, etc. Inserting a Canker Core into any infector shell will...well you get the idea.

Weapon cores have no quality.

Convertor mods
Convertor mods give a weapon special effects. Each current nano effect is available as a convertor mod, adding that nano effect to the gun.

In addition, there is a new type of effect, given by the Rail Gun Convertor Mod. This enhances the weapon with a magnetic firing system similar to rail guns, at the cost of not being able to use a nano effect. This mod works differently depending on what base weapon type it's used for. Rockets fly faster and deal additional impact damage if you hit the target square on, grenades fly longer, faster, and more straight, ARs/SMGs/LMGs have minor bonuses to recoil reduction, damage, and accuracy, and so on.

Convertor mods have quality, up to legendary level (i.e. white, green, blue, purple, orange). For nano effect mods, the quality determines the chance of the nano effect triggering. For Rail Gun Convertor Mods, it determines how much each bonus to different stats is.

Convertor mods can also have a synergy, which weapon cores can not. Synergies work similarly to current Defiance, but do not require the shell to have a synergy in order to accept synergy mods. If you use several mods with the same synergy in any shell, the weapon will get the bonus. You can also combined two synergies by using two mods of each kind. There is however no synergy bonus for single mods, meaning you need to have at least two to get any bonus.

Stock mods
Work more or less the same way as current stock mods. Quality goes to legendary level, where e.g. a recoil stock of legendary quality would have a 0.75 modifier, keeping it scaling the way it currently does.

Stock mods can have synergies.

Barrel mods
Same as stock mods: more quality levels, but otherwise similar.

Magazine mods
Same as barrel and stock

Sniper rifles, LMGs, SMGs, ARs, and lock-on rocket launchers can use sights. Shotguns, LMGs, ARs, and SMGs can use grips. These generally mirror the current sight mods, but grip versions do not zoom in. These mods do not have synergies, but the do have quality rates up to legendary level.

Proficiency slots
There are 4 proficiency slots available for each shell. These are unlocked as you level up, and a weapon shell you acquire early will gain new slots as you level up. The slots are unlocked at EGO level 500, 1000, 2000, and 3000.

Proficiency slots can accept Proficiency Mods. Proficiency mods have quality ratings up to legendary level, but do not have synergies. Some proficiency mods however are Unique, meaning that you cannot use more than one of (any quality of) them on the same weapon.

Examples of proficiency mods are:
Critical Proficiency Mod (Unique):
White: +2% crit. Green: +5% crit. Blue: +10% crit. Purple: +15% crit. Orange: +20% crit

EGO Recharge on Kill Proficiency Mod (Unique):
White: +1% EGO power recharge on kill. Green: +4% EGO power recharge on kill. Blue: +7% EGO power recharge on kill. Purple: +10% EGO power recharge on kill. Orange: +15% EGO power recharge on kill

Ammo Regen Proficiency Mod:
White: +1% ammo regen/5 sec. Green: +3% ammo regen/5 sec. Blue: +5% ammo regen/5 sec. Purple: +7% ammo regen/5 sec. Orange: +10% ammo regen/5 sec

Examples of use:
You can have only one Critical Proficiency Mod on a weapon, meaning the max crit modifier you can have is 20%. You can however use four legendary Ammo Regen Proficiency Mods (assuming you can find them- good luck!) on a weapon and get 40% ammo regen every 5 sec. "Infinite" ammo at the cost of using up all your slots that could give you all sorts of mods. Remember that since the top mods here are legendary, don't expect to be able to shove the best mods in the world into your weapon right away!

Weapon XP/mastery
Each weapon has an XP rating determined by the average quality of the mods. The higher the quality of the mods, the more XP is needed to master the weapon. Weapon XP counts towards weapon levels, just as it currently does.

Mastering a weapon awards you a special lock box that contains a random mod (except weapon core mods) that fit on that weapon. Quality and synergy is random, HOWEVER:
*The higher the quality of the mods on the weapon, the higher the XP needed to master it, and the higher the chance of a high quality mod. A weapon full of legendary mods will not always yield a legendary mod, but the chance is higher than for mastering a weapon full of white mods. It also takes longer to master.
*If you have mods with synergies on your weapon, this increases the chance of getting a mod with that synergy. It's not guaranteed, and you might get a mod for a slot you already filled, but a weapon with four Assassin mods is more likely to yield a mod with Assassin synergy
*These modifiers are based on what you have on your weapon when you master it.

Weapon XP is automatically reset when you master a weapon.

Weapon core vendors
A new type of vendor that sells weapon cores. Simple enough

Mod Caches
Obtained from missions or from lock box vendors for 10 key codes (for 2 mods). Can contain any standard mod of any quality except for weapon cores, as well as any proficiency mod of any quality.

Synergy Mod Caches
Similar to the above, but can only contain the four mod types that have synergies. 15 key codes gives you three random mods.

Reputation vendors and weapon type lock boxes
All reputation vendors sell lock boxes for specific base weapon types (AR, Sniper, etc), meaning you can for instance buy an Assault Rifle Mod Lock Box from any reputation vendor for 50 of their points. These lock boxes cost 50 reputation points and contain one mod of at least blue rarity for the weapon type you buy a box for. The mods can be any mod type except weapon cores.

Lock boxes
Lock boxes of all quality levels will yield a single weapon of the quality of the lock box. A green lock box will yield a green weapon, a blue lock box a blue weapon, etc. By "blue weapon", that refers to a shell with blue level mods.

Lock boxes are available for the following key code costs:
Green: 5 key codes
Blue: 10 key codes:
Purple: 40 key codes
Orange: 250 key codes

Salvage Matrix
The salvage matrix is used to adding or removing individual or all mods. The latter comes at a highly reduced cost compared to what it would cost to remove or retrieve all mods one by one.

Ark salvage count is calculated based on how much stuff is on the weapon. There's a base value for shells, then mods of various qualities and types modify that, so you'll never salvage a fully modified weapon and get the same as for a shell.

Typical way of playing
You start playing Defiance with your base weapon. As you do missions you get minor upgrades that you put into your starter weapon, or entirely new shells. After a few hours you find a vendor that has an AR that looks awesome, so you buy it, and start putting all your mods there. You do various events, and every time you get a high quality AR, you look to see if you can use any of the mods. You do daily and weekly contracts, and spend the points on AR lock boxes. Suddenly you realize you're close to 250 key codes, so you save up, and get a legendary lock box. Inside is a legendary SMG with a shell bonus for fire rate, so you start collecting mods for that. You master it, get your mod cache, and repeat.

Months down the line, you're running around an arkfall killing Hellbugs with your favorite AR. The shell is the Firestorm AR you got from arkfall codes, modified with a ton of stuff you found on the way, and currently using a Assault Carbine weapon core. You have all proficiency slots unlocked, and have filled them with various beastly mods that truly reflect all the time you put into the game, instead of just your luck from the last lock box.

If anyone's still reading at this point, let me know what you think.

06-15-2013, 08:46 AM
bumping this to see if anyone's crazy enough to read

jbob spittlewop
06-25-2013, 01:12 AM
Very well done, I agree with most of this.

06-25-2013, 01:22 AM
Agreed, this is mostly a good idea... although I think 250 keys would be great for orange if purples were at 100 since purples are supposed to be epic etc.

06-25-2013, 01:24 AM
You'd get better reception from Trion in the correct subforum - http://forums.defiance.com/forumdisplay.php?38-Suggestions!

jbob spittlewop
06-25-2013, 01:26 AM
You'd get better reception from Trion in the correct subforum - http://forums.defiance.com/forumdisplay.php?38-Suggestions!

His was from a while back he linked it in another thread and I just read it, but true you should submit it in there.

06-25-2013, 01:37 AM
This is more or less how I was hoping Borderlands 2 would do things. And how I'm hoping Borderlands 3 does things. And how I wished Defiance did things having found out and understood mods. Basically any gun-centric loot-based shooter where guns generate randomly (especially in Borderlands where there's actually a pool of different parts for aesthetic reasons), should let you make break down guns to make FrankenGuns. Borderlands with their differing manufactures has a load of potential mechanics you could use to balance things.

The thing I would change is that if a weapon has a Mod you want, you have to destroy the whole weapon to retrieve that mod to put it in another gun.

06-25-2013, 03:03 AM
Holy huge wall of text, BUT very good suggestions made.

In any grindfest mmo, you have to have a variety in weaponry and have each one a valid type to fit your playstyle while still being good enough to be pinned up against others of similar level. Defiance has a decent array of weapon types and mods, but half the guns suck compared to others, loot feels like more of a chore to break down rather than loot that is useful, and it just feels....lacking, to say the least.

06-25-2013, 09:55 AM
A bump for others to see.