Heroic Commendations: A Suggestion

Thoughts on Heroic Commendations

Almost a year ago we were introduced to heroic commendations.  They are yet another crafting ingredient so far limited to upgrading the newest raid loot and some high end armor.  Here’s some of my thoughts on where I’d like to see them go next.  The goal here is to make these commendations more useful to more players and make them more valuable by making more useable choices available to them even while making them more available.

1)    make them BTA: There isn’t a whole lot to be served by making heroic comms bind to character.  It means that if you have a use for them on a character you must specifically run THAT character through the raids.  This means that certain character types end up needing to run these raids more often than others.  Why?  Lets face it, not every piece of gear is created equal. Some raid loot (braising star I’m looking at you) is just not as desirable as others.  Also, some characters will naturally need more commendations as they look to acquire more of this gear.  BTC has its place, a character should be running a raid to get loot – and base versions of loot as released with Fall of Truth rings a very appropriate chord.  The problem is that certain types of characters (specifically healers) tend to not need or have available as many upgradable pieces of loot. This leaves other character types and late comers to the raid out of luck as not only fewer and fewer people are running the raid, but fewer and fewer people have any reason to run say a healer. This leads me to my next point…

2)    Replace greater tokens of the twelve with heroic comms: at this point we have 2 different items functioning in almost the same manner.  The only difference here is that greater tokens are used for older gear and in a slightly different manner.  What is served by having 2 different but very similar functioning items?  The recipes greater tokens are used in require normal tokens so its not like you would be able to make desert pack related gear by running gianthold.  In reverse, you still need to run Fall of Truth to get your base item before you can farm out epic Demon Queen.  The drop rates for greater tokens in DQ and Von 6 seem to be just right for heroic commendation drops whereas LoB, Master Artificer, and even CitW should probably see adjustments using Fall of Truth as the baseline for commendation drops.  That’s the important thing: Use Fall of Truth as the baseline with slightly better drop rates for progressively newer content. The idea there being that as newer content is released their stuff would cost more commendations but would also drop more commendations over a larger number of runs. This will revitalize the older epic raids and suddenly there are more reasons for folks to run them.  Again, I am looking to make heroic commendations more wily available while simultaneously giving them more uses to compensate and keep their relative value similar.  Which leads to…

3)    Add the ability to exchange heroic commendations for older epic shards and seals: before you worry about flooding the DDO populace with a host of older epic gear remember that its old epic gear.  Power gamers aren’t making it anymore because its outdated and often times a pain to build.  The average player isn’t making it because there is better stuff out there and these contents aren’t being run nearly as much.  What I would like to see here is the ability to trade 3 seals from the same pack of content and say 3 heroic commendations for a different seal from the same content.  For shards I would go with 3 shards and 5 heroic commendations. In practice this functions very similarly to how Fall of Truth items upgrade. This still requires you to run specific content and acquire several shards and seals, but gives you a sense of making progress even if you aren’t getting the exact shard and seal you want.  And you still have to get a scroll.

4)    And while we are on a related subject, someone needs to revisit the costs of augments bought with tokens of the twelve.  Several augments cost 20 tokens, the same price for a true heart of wood.  I the DDO Store those hearts of wood cost about 1500 turbine points.  Better versions of those augments cost 200 turbine points.  And to be specific: I’m asking that the only price change you make is to make augments cheaper when buying with tokens of the 12. Even if these went down to 5 tokens and a heroic commendation this would be an improvement.  It also serves to give yet another use of heroic commendations.

5)    Keep using heroic commendations: instead of creating yet another ingredient item, stick with the heroic commendations in the future. Not that we can’t have more ingredient items, the gianthold relics is an example of a good use of them. Also, this should be limited to a raid item.  You may worry about accelerating how fast new gear gets upgraded, but the goal here is to keep creating meaningful ways to spend heroic commendations to keep that down a bit. And in any case, we know we are going to have to get base items from the new content to upgrade them. This will also provide incentive for top tier players to keep playing.  They know that collecting these comms now (and maybe other things) is working towards future content and items.

6)    Be creative with ways to spend heroic commendations: add a handful of vendors ready to exchange “items” for heroic commendations. Imagine what kind of cool things you could exchange commendations for!  Aside from what I suggested above, think about the following: ability tomes (the bigger ones), astral shards, cosmetic pets and their related gear (side note – it was cool how the PDK favor guy gave you a cosmetic pet.  It was not cool that when you got the favor with another character you got the same pet which you couldn’t use.  Couldn’t we have gotten a “pick one” of a selection of items all relating to that specific pet each time similar to the list we get for agents of argonnessen favor?), big stacks of consumables (like 1 commendation for 100 bound mnemonic pots?), tomes of fate, these new skill tomes we’ve seen on lamannia, and other store items like XP pots and hearts of wood (all of em, not just true hearts).  The trick here too is to expect more commendations over time.  As I mentioned above, make newer shinier stuff cost more comms, but have it drop more comms too.  That means that some of these suggestions should cost considerably more than others and may not even be available yet.  Of course, there’s always new stuff to add later to again keep the stockpile of commendations down.

My hope and belief is that these suggestions would create much more interest in raiding (again keeping commendations limited to epic raiding), a wider possibilities of uses for comms, and a more vibrant and fun raiding environment.  It’s a shame that aside from 1 or 2 exceptions that once a new raid is released the previous raids hardly see any action and newer players never really get to experience the full raiding experience and history of the game DDO.

Comments (5)

  1. What if you could trade for in 3(? 4?) Raid tokens for a heroic commendation?

  2. Sigfried Trent

    I like. As a more casual raider the fragmented systems mean I hardly ever get to upgrade or complete epic items.

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