Golden Xan

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Hey everyone,

The skill system was explained today, March 17th, 2021.





These are the main highlights of the stream:

The interface:Combat Arena Cut 01.jpg
You can see the trinary state representation with the Red Lady statue on the left, with 7 ability slots being shown: Left Mouse Button (LMB), Right Mouse Button (RMB), Q, E, R, F, and Space. On the right there are client options, such as an inventory button (I), a deck button (TAB), presumably a map button (M), what looks like an options menu (CTRL) and a mail icon. There is also some kind of statue on the right that seem to represent another character status, glowing gold, and under it there is a square icon with what looks like a pillar inside it.

Vampire Deck 01.jpg
This is the Deck screen, where you can view all your Tarot cards currently assigned, opened with the TAB key. We can see, from left to right:
Danse Macabre, Exsanguinate, Path of the Blade, the E card name was not revealed, Mist Form, Bat Form, and Blur. Each of them have an art, a symbol, and a color. Maybe the color is associated to the consumption of Vitality or Mana, or simply the specialization of Physical, Magickal, or Essential (though that is less likely since Bat Form is essential).

If you hover over the lower part of a card, it shows "Evolve". Clicking it takes you to the Tarot card skill tree:
Vampire Skill Tree 01.jpg
This is the Danse Macabre skill tree.

Vampire Skill Tree 02.jpg
This is the Mist Form skill tree.

Vampire Skill Tree 03.jpg
This is Exsanguinate's skill tree.

It's interesting that they are all different. They have different symbols, they have different path varieties and shapes, and some of them have those marks that may (must) have more than just a cosmetic effect, such as being stronger on specific circumstances, or just being accessible within certain circumstances. We can see some lines are trailed, others are solid, and that some circles have trailed lines inside of them, instead of solid lines.

Vampire Skill Swap.jpg
Finally, we have the swap. If you click on the main Deck button on the deck screen, you are taken to all the skills currently available for the character. They are, from top to bottom (of those that I can identify):
Bat Form, Blur, Blood Moon Bat Form, Children of the Night, Danse Macabre, Demon, Dragon Skin, Enthrall, Exsanguinate, Masquerade, Mist Form, Path of the Blade, and then the last three are hidden. Shame about that.

This was all that was shown to us. But as to what was explained...

- The Tarot cards contain a power themselves. They are not a representation of a knowledge attained by your character (This was asked in the afterparty, but I feel that we may still need some clarification on that, so take it with a grain of salt).
- Each card represents a skill that your character can perform, and some are variants of existing skills (like the Bat Form and the Blood Moon Bat Form).
- Each class has a specific amount of skill slots that it can use to assign skills. The Vampire has 7, the Liche is the class to have the most slots. The Revenant will have less character slots than the Vampire, and be more focused on combos.
- Each class starts with 3 cards already unlocked, one for each state.
- Every class has innate skills of a lesser form, in case you don't use a Tarot associated to that skill. For example, the Vampire can always drink blood, even if you don't have Exsanguinate assigned, but Exsanguinate empowers that ability to a much higher level.
- You can swap cards during the game.
- Each class has its own Tarot cards associated to them. Cards are not interchangeable between classes, but you may have similar cards to each class. For example, both the Vampire and the Liche may have a Fireball card, but they are going to differ in various ways from one another.
- Each card has its own talent tree. Talents modify the skill further, such as adding new functionality. The example given were talents in Danse Macabre that allow you to slide towards your enemies when you initiate an attack, talents that modify the combos you make, and a talent that allows you to "spin to win" (whirlwind with your weapon, like with the Havoc & Malice axes in Blood Omen).
- Cards level up as you play with them equipped. Whatever amount of experience you get in a mission will be distributed (in the same amount) to all cards. If you make 50,000 XP in a match, all cards equipped will acquire 50,000 XP.
- Cards have different rarities. Some have a cosmetic effect more so than anything else, and some have utility differences.
- You can collect the cards in the game by acquiring them as loot, rewards for quests, challenges, secrets, anything. Rare cards are going to be mostly found through quests. Denis mentioned having "one of a kind" cards that only one player will be able to have at a given time (this is going to be better explained eventually).
- You only acquire cards for the class you are playing.
- You cannot acquire duplicate cards.
- More cards are going to be added after the game is released, making it so that you will never run out of new combinations to explore and evolve.
- All of the skill cards revealed on the video, and their respective art and names, are merely placeholders. But I'd bet some of the main skills are here to stay, like Enthrall, Exsanguinate, Blur, Danse Macabre, Bat Form, Mist Form, and some more.
- Each card has its own piece of lore attached to it.
- The community may potentially have the possibility to influence the creation of some Tarot cards in the future. Make your contributions on World Anvil within the story!
- The spell system is different than the skill system.
- The physical Tarot card currently offered in the Founders Packs is a special Tarot deck formed of Old World cards, whatever that means. Eventually, they may sell physical copies of the default Tarot decks for all classes separately.
- This month's art reveal will be of the art style of these cards.
 

Elveone

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I like that the cards are color-coded according to resource/power source - red for physical, blue for magikal and green for essential. Also teal for magikal-essential hybirds and light-orange for physical-magikal hybrids.
 
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antonismar2

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btw, when you say, ''the cards contain a power themselves. They are not a representation of a knowledge attained by your character'' what does this mean? does the player literally find a card that gives his a power? thats kinda silly. In my opinion they should represent knowledge attained by your character. It would make thematic sense too since tarot cards are always associated with surrealistically representing real word stuff
 
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Golden Xan

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Yes, that's what it means. I'm not sure about it either. Denis answered this to me when I asked him in the afterparty following the stream, but it could be that I did not explain it well enough and that his reply was based on a misunderstanding. We'll have to wait and see for clarification on that, but from what he explained, Tarot cards may very well be literally floating objects that you find and that give you powers, and if you lose them in any way you lose that power. That wouldn't happen if your character learned something. It seems gamey, I hope it's not quite like that because it breaks immersion.
 

antonismar2

Ripe
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Sep 19, 2020
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Yes, that's what it means. I'm not sure about it either. Denis answered this to me when I asked him in the afterparty following the stream, but it could be that I did not explain it well enough and that his reply was based on a misunderstanding. We'll have to wait and see for clarification on that, but from what he explained, Tarot cards may very well be literally floating objects that you find and that give you powers, and if you lose them in any way you lose that power. That wouldn't happen if your character learned something. It seems gamey, I hope it's not quite like that because it breaks immersion.
I really don't like this too. Maybe you asked something with the word experience in? And he said that they don't have any experience in them when you pick them up? Lol. Best case scenario it was a misunderstanding, or we change their mind. Worse case scenario, I'm making a headCanon!
 
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Elveone

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Well, if I had to speculated I would guess that the cards are a representation of knowledge and power and at the same time they are a physical object. I guess you can create a card through your experience or you can find a card that is a remnant of someone else's memory. Or even it is possible to be bestowed the memory from the person who originally created the card. I would say that the cards are... insulation. If you had the knowledge of how to use that power in your head it could potentially literally fry you mind. So you create a card that separates you from that knowledge and through it you can use it safely.

It is also a way to store way more information and arcane forbidden knowledge than you ever could if all of that knowledge is in your head. And that is why you can use just a limited number of cards at a time - they take up space in you mind even if the majority of the knowledge is stored in the card. And that is why the Liche can use more of them at a time - because their minds have a greater capacity than anyone else's.

And because the knowledge is in the card instead of in your head - it can be taken away. Lost. Or perhaps stolen. Traded even. The new owner will not be able to access all that knowledge you had access to because they are not used to it. The knowledge might be there but the understanding isn't. So through experience you learn more and more about the power stored in the card. Even if it is you who have created it - you are dealing with powers that you do not understand fully. The power is there but the understanding of how to use it is lacking.

And perhaps it was never your knowledge to begin with. Perhaps it is knowledge of the elder gods that has infected your mind somehow. Perhaps it is knowledge coming from the fundamentals of the world itself. From the sources of power that we all touch. From the octahedron itself. Or perhaps it comes from even something more alien that we don't understand or haven't even heard about. And it is scary if you thing about it - a mind shattered into a deck of cards. But can you deny that power?