Philosophical problems of PvP...
SpoilerI didn't think it would be this bad... I'm hoping this is some sick joke <_<.
There are so many problems with the new PvP that I'm pretty sure that the unanimous opinion of it is that it sucks... hard. I say this because the majority who will try the new PvP will quickly realize that there is no place for them... it's basically a playground for extremely rich and funded people.
Problem #1: The "Hidden" effects of Potential
First of all, there is waaay too much damage being dealt. When players have about 1mil HP, dealing 100ks every so often is quite reasonable; when a player passes a certain threshold of funding (say, 200% main stat + 30% boss damage), it'll turn those 100ks into 800ks and perhaps 1mil. This means funded players are one-shotting everything they touch. This in of itself is not really a huge problem if there was a counter balance ie a way to fund defensively. With only HP, WDEF, and MDEF doing very little to keep you alive, there's really no other way to progress other than attack attack attack.
What this means is that classes that already have quite a formidable skill set with plenty of damage can only improve that already great damage further. If a class had something that can one-shot a player (for example, a DB using Final Cut), then throwing more damage onto it effectively does nothing for you.
However, when you have a defensive class that is lacking in strength, the game throws multiple ways to exponentially increase your strength, figuratively turning your peashooter into an assault rifle. This class will eventually get to the point where all you can do is one-shot.
The difference between these two classes is that both have the same capabilities attack wise (killing everything they touch) but only some classes have inherent defensive skills that their class has that cannot be obtained in any other way. This means that anything your class has that can keep you alive longer is invaluable.
The trend we see here is that classes with great attacking abilities but so-so defensive abilities (Archers, Pirates, Thieves) are getting completely mauled by everything and each other. Classes with great defensive abilities but so-so attacking abilities (Warriors, Mages, Legends) can actually hold their own while killing everything around themselves. Going even further than that, classes with the epitome of defensive abilities (Paladins, Bishops, Battle Mages, Phantoms) are, not surprisingly, the most effective classes at the moment.
How ironic that by raising everyone's health and def, you've effectively made it impossible for unfunded players to compete.
When anyone who has ever spent money on cubes begins swinging their weapon around for giant chunks of your HP, the vast majority will be shaving a couple ticks of health on their opponents assuming they don't die first.
Problem #2 : There is a funding "floor" but no funding "ceiling"
In the old PvP, the effects of BATT and equipment made a great impact on the game that grossly provides huge advantages to rich players... however there was a reasonable and reachable ceiling. There was a point where everyone, no matter how rich, arrived at the same plateau of power and funding. Any more investment beyond this plateau is hit with huge diminishing returns where at some point you'll be spending billions on a couple ticks of damage or defense. Although BATT created huge (negative) metagame changes to all the classes, it was, at the very least, "fair" in that everyone could be equal at some point and it was fortunately quite obtainable for the average PvPer.
With the new PvP and potential, there is no ceiling. If you spend 3bil on your gear, you will get 3bil worth of damage. Double that, you'll get double the effects and so on. Reaching for that unobtainable "perfection" rewarded you along the way proportionate to how much time and money you sink into the game; this means that there will always be a power advantage according to your funding because no one has reached the point where they can actually stop. There are no diminishing returns in terms of numbers; you will eventually get to the point where anything you do one-shots everything. The previous ceiling that prevented this (albeit, somewhat) is now gone.
Having no funding ceiling creates a lot of problems in PvE where hitting constant cap meant classes that simply did more hits, not necessarily more %, had huge advantages. But for PvP, this a huge problem as this directly affects other players...
Gameplay problems of PvP
SpoilerIgnoring the fact that everyone is dying to everything in the game, there are a couple interesting things I've come across while playing.
1) Summons do huge amounts of damage. I don't know if this is exclusive to just a few classes but most summons do disgusting amounts of damage. For example, an unfunded Mercedes summon does close to 30% hp damage while the Mercedes themselves can only hope to hit 10% per volley. Cannoneer summons seemingly tear apart everything. Also, all summons break through certain invincibilities.
2) The effects of Magic Guard is too good. For some reason, Magic Guard displaces HUGE amounts of damage to the point where Mages are the tankiest classes in the game. Where everyone dies in 1 shot by a particular attack, a mage with magic guard is seemingly able to take about 10 of those hits. Even Warriors (including Paladins when their guard is down) receive a hit that completely one-shots them, a mage is able to take about 5 of them. When you take into account that Warriors and Magic Guard Mages have close to the same HP pool, it doesn't make sense that Mages can tank these hits when Warriors can't.
Phantoms are incredibly squishy if their avoid doesn't proc, but when a Phantom has Magic Guard, they become tanks similar to mages. Granted, their MP runs out to make the most out of it, but it's evidence that Magic Guard is displacing way too much HP when things like Power Guard and Willow Defense pale in comparison.
Assessment of the "top" classes from this post.
Bishops have the capability of staying alive indefinitely provided no one is teaming up on you. Their (imo, incredible over powered) full Heal combined with their Holy Shell, Invincible, and super broken Magic Guard makes them completely unkillable unless you're funded out the butt... but even then, you'll never be able to stand up to them directly without dying several times. In a room with unfunded players... it's such a depressing sight... Too many unfunded Bishops are making it into the higher levels simply because of their endurance. Another depressing sight to see is watching your attacks instantly slaughter all the poor thieves, pirates, and archers around while this Bishop can tank a dozen of those (technically, they can tank indefinitely). The problem I have with this class is that they can actually soak up damage while guarding/avoiding while other classes can only guard/avoid (no class other than mages can actually do the taking hits part).
Phantoms are super squishy but when they're fully buffed, hitting them is pretty much rolling a dice. There's nothing really intuitive to hitting Phantoms since all it is is a huge gamble. Cannoneers of old had this horrible mechanic with their 35% counter rate (spoken as a veteran PvP Cannoneer) but Phantoms take the "gamble on successful hit" mechanic to another level. In my experiences, whenever I see Phantoms, I would never know the outcome of the fight. Most of the time I would be at 1%HP and I would instantly down a healthy Phantom by getting a lucky hit off. <I see a Phantom pass by? Give them a poke and ? oh, missed, oh well. Another passes by? Give them a poke and ? oh, he died, cool.> Other times, I could be repeatedly attacking a 1%HP Phantom for maybe half a minute and they suddenly just turn around and instantly kill me with Fusillade or Mille. The reality is that they get downed just as fast as other classes but everyone is given a handicap by flipping a coin whenever they attack them. This handicap probably contributes the most success to Phantom than any other factor... without it, they would be Dark Sightless DBs unless they steal Dark Sight.
Same thing with Paladins, they are are super squishy (squishier than DrKs but around the same as Heroes) but Divine Shield is so unbelievably good. When it procs (60%), you get a 12 hit cushion which is plenty to be able to survive nearly any class that isn't a Bishop, Phantom, Battle Mage, or another Paladin. The thing about all those hits is that it rolls over to the next cooldown (I believe is 30 seconds) which means if you can keep it to 12 hits per cool down, you're effectively invincible. Their self heal is nothing compared to Bishops (never was, never will) but it does provide a bit of longevity, especially if you're able to keep Divine Shield up the entire time. However, without Divine Shield, Paladins are just Heroes and will die just as fast. When I play my Paladin, the most dangerous/vulnerable time is after buffs and before I fight: if Divine Shield fails to proc at all, I'll just die. This makes you extremely vulnerable to one-shots... just shows you how squishy every class is and how good defensive skills are. And you know what's sad? Heroes are basically Paladins without Divine Shield :(
Battle Mages are pretty gimmicky because they have like... a AoE slow effect around them (which also apparently eats up Mages and their MP), (I think) 40% passive avoid, 10 second invincibility from BBBA, invincibility from Party Shield, and invincibility from Tornado. In old PvP it was somewhat manageable... but in new PvP, their cooldowns are so close together that they can be in an almost-perpetual state of invincibility and any small window you find will get eaten up by their great avoid. But, because they don't have Magic Guard, if you manage to hit them once, they'll probably die.
DS because they can block hits and that reflect... Generally very squishy so they definitely can't take a hit. DF management is such an awful thing to work with especially since all the classes that use to have some debilitating cooldowns are now instant with only MP as a factor.
Mages+Evans are nothing unique other than they can actually take hits. There's really nothing separating them from archers, pirates, and thieves other than they can actually take hits and not die instantly.
So all in all... not touching this thing with a stick until they do something. I'm hoping Nexon realizes that players went in with reasonable expectations and are now frustrated to the point where no one is even touching PvP anymore. Hope they fix this broken game...
So... how was your first day of PvP? ;/