Warriors: Shields as Weapons

Sony has expressed an interest in more people using shields. Warriors have shown a proven deficiency in being able to control an encounter: their taunt and damage output is just not enough, and the result is that the rest of the players must manage themselves or actively shed agro in order for the warrior to tank, where the knights, paladins and shadow knights, have spells that are more effective at maintaining agro.

To that end I began thinking about shields being used by a warrior as a weapon, not simply as a shield. Don’t think sword and shield, slash and block, that knights do in movies and fairy tales. Instead, think Gladiator, smashing his opponent with his shield, slashing him with it, crushing him with it, distracting his opponent from his more deadly bladed weapon in the other hand, breaking his concentration. Offense, not defence.

Add a new weapon skill called “Shield” or “Offhand Bashing”. Then go through and add a weapon delay to shields for warriors only. The damage for the shield would be based off the armor class of it as the Bash skill currently does. And for each swing of a shield have it apply a hate increase value, how large or small would need to be tested and tweeked. You don’t want to make a warrior with a shield have absolute agro so that the rest of a raid can nuke and attack without care, nor do you want to make it so small that a warrior would choose weapons with procs on them over a shield all the time.

The key and the goal here is that by tying the new hate increase to a weapon type means that the warrior can selectively choose when to apply this. If he or she is the main tank for a raid, or even a single group, they would probably choose to wield a shield for the agro, but if they are one of eight or ten warriors on a raid they could use other weapon combinations to avoid the added agro of the shield and focus on damage. And of course, every warrior would keep a shield in their bags so that in the event of an emergency, main tank death, multiple adds, etc., they could pull it out to help gain agro faster.

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