It is written by Mod Avatar and is dated 30 April 2013.
Following continuous monitoring and player feedback on the armour value changes we made back in January, we've decided to move to a system that's simpler and easier to predict, while still offering rewarding gear progression. Two frequent requests from your feedback have been for more variety in armour, and for stats to contribute more towards combat effectiveness. Both of these points have been driving factors in the changes we have recently made to EoC. The new system we have put in place allows us to provide both gear variation and greater bonuses from stat levels. These changes have not only allowed us to address your feedback but have also given us much broader possibilities for the future of combat.
Alongside the current type of armour, which is now known as tank armour, we are introducing two new types of armour: power and hybrid.
This gear is focussed towards those who want maximum survivability. It provides the highest armour rating and the most life points compared to other gear at the same level. The extra life points here can easily mean the difference between life and death when a boss hits with a burst of damage.
If you want to pursue maximum damage you will want to use power armour. It has been designed to suit those who want to chase high max hits and DPS. This gear will allow you to increase your kills per hour, but you'll need to rely on your potions, prayer and food to maintain your survivability.
With hybrid armour you will be able to use any combat style without suffering any accuracy penalty. It will also provide consistent protection against all damage types. This will be perfect for situations like Slayer where you may want to be swapping weapons without having to worry about swapping your whole loadout as well. Just remember that this gear comes with the lowest armour and life points, so be careful.
The introduction of these new types of armour will give a much wider tactical choice. Being able to mix and match pieces from each type of armour will lead to some interesting setups.
Don't want to sacrifice total survivability for damage? Use tank gear with power gloves and boots, perhaps.
Want to benefit from no penalty to accuracy in hybrid gear but don't quite have the armour rating you want? Throw on a shield and a tank body and take a small drop in accuracy but get those crucial extra life points and armour.
We're really interested to see how you use the new armour types we're providing, and hope that this brings back the variety in equipment you've been asking for.
Each armour type has a specific set of statistics we expect it to have at any given level. This lets us know exactly how future gear is going to act. Say we want to add level 90 power armour; we know it will have the same armour value as ports gear, which is tank gear 5 levels below, and life points equivalent to tank gear 10 levels below.
While making these changes, it was important that we preserved the best-in-slot status of high-end gear. After the update, Nex gear will still be the best damage boosting gear and ports gear will still be the best gear for survivability.
One of the biggest points of feedback we've seen for EoC has been to increase the contribution stats have to your combat effectiveness. Well, that's exactly what we've done. Alongside opening up the possibility of new armour types, the new, simplified system has also allowed us to factor stats into combat much more. We looked at the old pre-EoC contribution of stats and increased our new stat contribution to be much closer to it.
Now, every level that you gain in Attack, Ranged or Magic will increase your base accuracy value. This is also applied to Defence, so for every level you gain your base armour value will be increased. We have also made sure that the bonus you receive per level is increased the higher your level is. So, levelling up from 90 to 91 will provide a much larger bonus than levelling from 50 to 51.
These changes will allow you to engage with content using lower-level gear, as long as you have the extra levels to make up for it. Obviously your damage output and life point bonus will suffer, but your actual chance to hit/be hit can be made up for by gaining additional levels. We hope that this will help those of you who have been having a hard time with Slayer tasks.
Prayers and Potions
Enhancing stat contribution also gave us the perfect opportunity to revisit the effectiveness of potions and prayer. Until now their effect on combat is far from what it was pre-EoC. Stats now have a higher combat contribution, so potions and prayer benefit directly from the new system. Using potions to overstat by 10 levels will actually give you 10 levels' worth of bonus to your accuracy and/or armour. Accuracy-boosting prayers have been tweaked to work in a similar way by mimicking a boosted level. As mentioned above, the fact that your bonus increases as your level gets higher means that stat boosts become more powerful the higher level you are.
This also means that ranged and magic prayers now work properly. There have always been issues with ranged and magic accuracy prayers, and we're pleased that we've now given them the treatment they need to stand up next to their melee equivalents.
We've also taken this opportunity to address some concerns over the Soul Split curse. The change this week is twofold: The amount Soul Split heals per hit has been lowered, as with the new damage rates it would have been too high. This brings Soul Split to a level where it's a useful support option, rather than something to be used as standard. It's worth noting, though, that we have actually removed the cap on Soul Split, meaning that there's no limit to the number of life points you can heal per Soul Split. If you're capable of hitting the truly massive damage numbers, you'll actually noticed increased returns from Soul Split. Also, in line with the above changes to Soul Split we have also reduced the effectiveness of the penance aura.
New Equip Screen
Another area of EoC that we have been seeing a lot of feedback for is the equipment interface. All of the bars and numbers didn't display the information in a very convenient or clear manner. To remedy this, the equip screen has had a complete makeover, rendering this important combat information much more understandable. We've added lots of useful tooltips explaining how the individual stats work to help fill in any blanks.
There is also a combat simulator attached to the new equip screen that will help give you an idea of how your gear will perform against an opponent of a specific combat level. The simulator assumes that the opponent has standard statistics, so it will not be perfect at simulating your gear against bosses and other special enemies. Nevertheless, we hope it will provide you with useful information for scenarios such as Slayer tasks.
As always, the Evolution of Combat is ongoing. We can't wait to see how you get to grips with the new gear and combat mechanics we're introducing. As always, we need your feedback on how you're finding RuneScape combat so we can keep it honed to a keen, cutting edge. Post on the forums if you have anything you'd like to say about the EoC.