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Circe - Staff of the Master Upgrade


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Hello all!

Looking at Heroes that are still missing Staff upgrades I stumbled across Circe. I'm here to suggest a Staff of the Master effect for our friendly neighbourhood Deceiver. Below is the proposed upgrades (in gold/bold )

Quote

 

TWISTED VISAGE (SHATTERED MIRROR)

RANGE: 750 | MANA COST: 100,150,200
Target an enemy hero to channel for 2 seconds, Stunning them for the duration. After channeling completes, you become a copy of the enemy hero including items and abilities for 15 seconds. While in this form, you deal 70 / 85 / 100% damage. If you get a Kill against the enemy hero you copied permanently extend Twisted Visage's duration by 5 seconds and its damage bonus by 5%. You may end this effect early with D.

 

Reasoning: There is no doubt that Circe's Ultimate is game changing, this Staff effect continues that trend but also allows her more longevity in bigger fights and grants her a few unique features.

1) The ability to have a fairly hard (but channeled) targeted Stun, which she lacks in her default Kit. 

2) A threat even if you are Stunned out of the Ultimate channel.

3) A dangerous "win-more" momentum effect when the doppelganger kills the original.

I propose this instead of the old fashioned "give Circe the staff upgrade of the copied target" because I feel like it is generally a more interesting upgrade as a whole. Flavour-wise there has always been the old stories of doppelgangers killing and replacing their originals, and usually becoming better than the original... so much so that the friends and family can barely tell which was real. In this case Circe becomes more and more like the targets she copies by getting a longer duration Ultimate, eventually allowing her to gain multiple spell and item cooldown cycles and much more value out of her R in general.

Let me know what you think. It's been a blast to be back.

Edited by Hubaris
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I need to know something, Newerth. The way we used to be together... I... I don't mean lately, but before... It was real, wasn't it?

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First thing you should ask yourself proposing SotM upgrade - "will you be able to farm it yourself?".
Second question is "will other players buff you for 2300 with possible better choices among team?".
Third question, "is it worth 4200 gold?".

Will you be able to farm it yourself?
1) Circe doesn't need items much. Plus point (but keep in mid that this is intentional design).
2) Circe is not a farmer hero, she's not supposed to spend time farming. Minus point.
3) Her farming speed is laughable. She does not have attack damage or abilities to kill creeps quickly. She is not able to farm jungle stacks and not supposed to. Minus point.
4) Stealing kills with support for an upgrade, even a good one, is overall bad idea. With exception of going for concrete strategies, like rushing Myrmidon staff. Assists won't give you much gold, and orb's link takes a lot of time. Minus point.
5) Since this upgrade gives snowballing effect, the longer it takes to get it the less effective it becomes.
The result is: you will not be able to farm it yourself in most scenarios; when you will manage to farm staff the game will have already ended or the staff  will have become inefficient (meaning having other items for 4200g would have been better).

Will other players buff you for 2300 with possible better choices among team?
There's a lot of good SotM effects to go for, and I would rather buff someone else. Look at the frequently picked heroes, Devourer or Solstice for example, and think about their upgrades. Are they better? Most definitely.
On the other hand, what does this upgrade add to the team? Additional damage? You have to earn it first. Aditional duration? It gives more to Circe herself, as well as the ability to cancel ultimate early. 2 seconds stun is good, but you need to channel it. I don't think that 2 seconds channelled stun worth spending 2300g.

Is it worth 4200 gold?
The effects of this upgrade are mediocre. There's no such thing as buffing the hell out of Circe and there should not be, she's not designed this way. Increasing bonuses is not guaranteed, and you will not be able to do it consistently, unless you are deliberately farming for it. Cancelling ultimate early, as far as I know, is technically impossible right now. Getting staff by yourself is tough and takes a lot of time.
It is not worth 4200 gold.

Verdict: you will be able to consistently get the upgrade and use it efficiently only when playing with a friend who can quickly afford SotM and boost you (with heroes like Dampeer or Wretched Hag), or when playing 45min+ games (but not always).

Edited by EngineerT
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I instantly had to think about becoming the copied hero permanently. And/or to be displayed as the real hero (with minimap icon, etc) until first attack. Probably could be overpowered or technically impossible but would definately add some sick twisted plays and a new layer. Pretty much like the Spy in TF2.

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@EngineerT

Counterpoints to the above:

Will you be able to farm it yourself?

As you said, Circe doesn't need items so every item outside of Red Marcher and Wards are pure luxuries. Its ultimately always going to be a luxury. If you look, I specifically made it nearly competitive with items such as Hex (but not overshadowing), but it is significantly easier to build as it comes in smaller portions.

Saying that Circe shouldn't farm is disingenuous.  Heroes aren't divided into Farm and Not Farm heroes; the traditional divide is priority of Farming and Circe with Farm can be a competent pushing hero in her own right. I can easily see a Circe in slot 3 or 4 as much as her as an item-less 5. This is actually another point as to why the item is interesting, because the Staff Upgrade is strong enough to push her into a 2 or 3 role with it. It allows diversity of play and build.

Farming speed isn't a particularly difficult hurdle. With how much Gold is in the game and through gold ticks all you need is 20 minutes of 200 GPM (which is laughable standard farm) to afford a SotM, it is not unachievable. Considering her teamfight impact with her Ultimate by default it is not unheard of for her to get a massive gold Spike if she does take an enemy Carry or Initiator.

You keep on hyperfocusing on the idea that she can only be played as a hard support. Adding items that fundamentally change the hero and how you view it should be the idea of Staff of the Master. Imagine Circe has taken a Hammerstorm but has killed Hammer 2-3 times. Now she copies Hammer and has +10-15% damage, an almost 30 second duration and more. She is now way more dangerous than the Hammer, she can push after the fight like the Hammer, she can fight buybacks as she can still remain as Hammer. This adds interesting lines of play, so yes in general "stealing kills" is bad, but honestly its a really silly reason when the payoff is good.

In the end it comes down to does the Item add something interesting to the playstyle or does it just do more of the same? Looking at Staff effects like Witch Slayer you laugh, but then you look at something like Pharaoh and it completely changes how you play him. Numbers can be tweaked, you could easily make it 10% and overshoot the damage buff but I find it's better to play it safe with initial suggestions than create something that is completely absurd. My initial design had it refresh her cooldowns upon Killing her target but it was too swingy if you copied low cooldown or high cooldown heroes so I scrapped it.

Also I would recommend that when providing critique to people you don't use terse terms like "Minus Point". It makes you come off as condescending and while I don't care too much but many others would look at it and get quite upset.

---

@Falk1 I think it would be cool but unfortunately just like Spy, coordinated teams would easily tromp all over it.

Edited by Hubaris
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I need to know something, Newerth. The way we used to be together... I... I don't mean lately, but before... It was real, wasn't it?

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1 hour ago, Hubaris said:

Also I would recommend that when providing critique to people you don't use terse terms like "Minus Point". It makes you come off as condescending and while I don't care too much but many others would look at it and get quite upset.

First of all that was not a critique. I'm not a specialist or designer and disagree with a lot of things done to the game. You asked what people think, I wrote something off my mind with the language I know, because SotM subject has been always interesting to me.

And second - what is there to be upset about? That was not minus point to the suggestion, but to the question mentioned.

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31 minutes ago, EngineerT said:

First of all that was not a critique. I'm not a specialist or designer and disagree with a lot of things done to the game. You asked what people think, I wrote something off my mind with the language I know, because SotM subject has been always interesting to me.

And second - what is there to be upset about? That was not minus point to the suggestion, but to the question mentioned.

Oh critique doesn't mean bad, I'm just saying that other people might not like that tone.

Thank you for the alternate view though, it's important to have that.

I need to know something, Newerth. The way we used to be together... I... I don't mean lately, but before... It was real, wasn't it?

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