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Consider removing a weakness from Mental types (PVP)

Rigaudon

Apprentice
Joined
Feb 7, 2020
Messages
109
I know this seems extreme, but I've been sitting on this for a while. It's been brought up a few times in comp chat and PVP social circles. If nothing else, let my rational magnify why Mentals are so hard to fit onto teams.

Yes, I am aware that I'm proposing something huge that will require a ton of thought and careful testing. Yes, I know people are just intrinsically hesitant to huge changes, but if your only argument is "but we can't just make a big change" with no followup as to why specifically this change would be bad for the game, please no. As a disclaimer: if you have never touched a single PVP ranked ladder game in your life, this is going to be a wall of text that won't make a ton of sense and relies on a lot of context you may or may not have even heard of.

-----

So, here is the current Mental typing chart:

Here is the current Fire, Nature, and Electric chart for comparison:
[Fire] [Nature] [Electric]
  1. Every mental dual type has a minimum of 3 weaknesses. A majority of them have 4 weaknesses. You basically can't compensate for Mental as a type, because there is almost always some notable common weakness (like water) or some really ugly x4 weakness. A lot of other types have three x2 weaknesses and some very good combinations take that down to just two x2 weaknesses.
  2. Mentals DO suffer from a nasty statline. I'm not ignoring that this also hurts their performance. Most of the viable/commonly seen Mentals have a trait that is widely considered overtuned and have been problematic balance-wise historically (Protector, Deceit Aura). Barnshe is probably the most balanced mental, and that's because it is part wind type and actually has the stats to perform / is one of the dual types that only has 3 weaknesses (also you play it like a wind tem most of the time?)... Myx isn't bad, but like how Barnshe mostly clicks wind moves, Myx just hits Crystal Spikes. Its trait also lets it ignore its weaknesses, in that we all know Myx is only weak to spread moves anyway (harhar).
  3. Mentals frequently stack weaknesses in extremely awkward ways on teams, and yet they are the only reliable counter to Neutrals. Offensively they are actually pretty dang good(!) but the defenses and type weaknesses are so poor that it can be awkward to use them to their intended potential.

All of this combines into a teambuilding nightmare for the typing. It's hard to justify Mentals that don't have ""broken"" traits because the type's weakness combinations and the lack of statlines to reliably overcome those weaknesses make them inconsistent.


What would I personally do / what would I take off? Hard to say. Here are some of my considerations.
  • We should keep the Crystal weakness. From a purely PVP perspective, I think this is the least problematic teambuilding wise. From a holistic, obvious perspective it absolutely has to stay because that's how the starters are introduced to players.
  • This leaves Digital and Electric. With only the hindsight available to me of current and past metas, the most glaring consideration is how Digithreat pairs with things like Nagaise. If you remove either of these, having both a mental and a digital on the field means you are less likely to have an immediate counterthreat to these sorts of plays.
  • If we remove electric, Reactive Vial Naga can no longer be KO'd, Barnshe is buffed, Kinu gets 4 resists (resists electric).
  • If we remove digital weakness, it's less impactful in terms of mitigating teambuilding issues but also has less glaring buffs to existing mental tems. Digitals are somewhat considered weak right now stat-wise anyway.
  • Loatle cheese exists and being able to threaten Loatle hard is kind of important
With that I think there are two routes I'd take, and it bleeds into small buffs/adjustments into other types that a good chunk of people think need some help anyway.

1) If Electric weakness is removed, existing Mentals will need to be tuned (possibly even nerfed) to account for this, but all other Mentals (pending Arbury) will probably be significantly more easy to justify on a team. It does immediately fix a lot of stacked type weaknesses for the dual types and makes pure types more reliable
(guesstimated new chart here: with my wonderful MS Paint skills. No I did not double check this.)

2) If Electric weakness is not removed, Earths should REALLY REALLY REALLY be looked at. Stacking electric weaknesses can be rough sometimes, but having more splashable earth options not named Vulffy would help a lot with mitigating the stacking issues that Mentals bring.
(guesstimated new chart here: also not double checked but it gives a general idea.)

I think removing Electric significantly buffs the type and significantly removes the problems the type has when it comes to teambuilding.
I think removing Digital is the least risky/easiest to manage.

My personal opinion is you remove Mental's Digital weakness, keep Mental's Electric weakness, meaningfully buff Earths in general (not named Vulffy), specifically give Earths synergy/teambuilding options that makes it better to put them on the same team as Mentals, and buff some of the Digital tem statlines to compensate a little. (Some of the Digitals don't quite have the stats to reliably do what they want to do right now anyway...I'm looking at you, Zaobian).

Even if an idea as drastic as removing a weakness can't be entertained, Mentals absolutely have to be designed and buffed with the understanding that their teambuilding options (without the help of overtuned traits) are sometimes super mega jank. They don't smoothly slot into teams and the incentive to do so is lacking compared to other more commonly run types (like waters). There are probably ways around this if a lot of elbow grease is put in via synergy options, compensated stat buffs, etc. But I really do think something has to give. Even if Arbury's Mental types are designed with this in mind, a lot of Mentals like Pocus (who suffers from literally every downside on this post and more) really need help.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Nov 12, 2020
Messages
517
If digital type gets this nerf will it get something else buffed to make up for it?

In my opinion mental as a type is pretty well balanced, but the power creep of things good against them and things that are supposed to be weak to them makes the type seem weak.

Some of the mental type gimmicks being dependent on building a team with multiple mental types emphasizes this problem (Synergy Master Adoroboros with Psychic Collaborator, Pocus with Slow Down).

Electric Custodian is available on Zizare and Raignet. Zizare can cover mental's weaknesses to crystal and electric but has terrible speed, so you'll have to switch out your mental type into something else anyway which could've just as easily been any earth or crystal type with negligable electric damage taken. Raignet does the same but shares mental's weakness to crystal with only Perfect Jab to hit hard. The one exception is Electric Custodian Zizare paired with Deceit Aura Nagaise when both are already on your field, but they're both weak to nature.

I'd rather give buffs to individual evolution lines that are underwhelming in the mental type than change the resistances/weaknesses. Reducing the power creep would help mental types catch up as well.
 

spleen17

Rookie
Joined
Nov 28, 2020
Messages
4
Mentals have also been hit with a lot of nerfs recently. Protector is understandable, but the changes to deceit aura and rejuvenate prior to Cipanku releasing seem a little weird, given all the new counters that were added.
 

Bacon4ever

Apprentice
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
Messages
169
Normal tems have the worst type advantage of all the types I believe 1 weakness but resists nothing hits nothing else for 2 times. So i highly highly doubt they would ever change the type charts unless the unlikely chance they some how add a new type or types in the future.
 

Aeon

Apprentice
Joined
Jul 6, 2019
Messages
214
This seems like an intended design. Mental isn’t designed as a regular offensive type, they’re designed around disruption and control strategies using status conditions and debuffs. Most members of the type have access to sleep and doom to counter their weaknesses, and synergies with them (crystal deluge) also inflict these statuses. Control and sleep strategies can be very powerful when they work so there should be more weaknesses to compensate.

Digital isn’t that strong offensively right now even though they’re supposed to be the offensive type, so I don’t see the need to remove mental’s digital weakness. I do agree though that making neutral’s only counter a defensively weak type like mental might not have been the best idea.
 

Rigaudon

Apprentice
Joined
Feb 7, 2020
Messages
109
This seems like an intended design. Mental isn’t designed as a regular offensive type, they’re designed around disruption and control strategies using status conditions and debuffs. Most members of the type have access to sleep and doom to counter their weaknesses, and synergies with them (crystal deluge) also inflict these statuses. Control and sleep strategies can be very powerful when they work so there should be more weaknesses to compensate.

Digital isn’t that strong offensively right now even though they’re supposed to be the offensive type, so I don’t see the need to remove mental’s digital weakness. I do agree though that making neutral’s only counter a defensively weak type like mental might not have been the best idea.
Very true! I call it "compensating" in the post but indeed, mentals can be individually compensated with secondary elements to their design.

Digitals I think just need.a stat buff in most places
 

Goldschuss

Apprentice
Joined
Mar 7, 2020
Messages
249
Traditionally, crowd control abilities are associated with tanky characters that take a supportive role. So the frail mental temtem being relegated to mainly control doesn't sit right with me, especially when we will get more mental mono types in Arbury, like Pocus.
 

Cheware

Tamer
Joined
Nov 2, 2020
Messages
495
This seems like an intended design. Mental isn’t designed as a regular offensive type, they’re designed around disruption and control strategies using status conditions and debuffs. Most members of the type have access to sleep and doom to counter their weaknesses, and synergies with them (crystal deluge) also inflict these statuses. Control and sleep strategies can be very powerful when they work so there should be more weaknesses to compensate.
The problem is that most Doom and Sleep techniques are Holds, and/or slow priority. In the case of Doom, in addition to its Hold, you even have to wait 4 turns for the target to die, which you could have achieved a lot faster if you just... blasted it to death.

So for Mentals to be efficient, you need :
- Nagaise, obviously
- High TV investment in speed, which in turn "nerfs" them in tankiness or damage dealt
- Synergies

Whereas the rest of the 0-hold-100+-damage-technique meta can just one-shot whoever the fuck they want at turn 1, or at worst finish them the next turn, while you're trying to temporize until your Doom technique is ready... just for it to be canceled by whatever Tem gaining a third status.

The fact most of them have poor defenses (except Ado I think ?), in addition to plenty of weaknesses and overall too few buffs make them really, really weak. And they're not even hitting that hard to justify having such shitty defensive stats.
 
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