In v0.15 a new system of 'Troop Abilities' was introduced to help improve the effectiveness of Unique Troops and make them stand apart from other troops of the same tier. Later in the development of that version an update was made to expand this functionality to cover Companion Abilities to give each companion a more unique usefulness and role within the party. I hinted back then that I intended to make these options available to the player as well in time, but that an interface would need to be created in order to make that feasible. Well v0.20's focus has been making modifications to current abilities to improve their usefulness and making the system available to player characters.
Quite a few of the existing troop abilities function just fine when assigned for the player to use, but some did need to be adapted or reworked to allow non-companion/troop usage. After weeding out the abilities that were only intended for companions to use or only useful for common troops that leaves the system currently with 22 left for player use. With this update I'll be adding some new player-only abilities and will continue to add to those as future versions develop. The system was also expanded to allow up to six abilities and with v0.20 you'll now be able to choose a new one at levels 5, 10, 15, 20, 25 and 30. There is no limitations on which talents may be chosen at any given level as most scale in effectiveness depending upon your build. My intention is that this new system should provide new ways in defining your character's role beyond skills, proficiencies & attributes. With the next update I'll be leaving in a method where you can easily clear out all of your current choices and allow you to pick them again. This is being done to give you a chance to test the new options out for a bit, but eventually will be made less accessible.
As this is a new system and could easily be missed there has also been a tutorial quest "Expanding Your Talents" added to the mod to let you know when you've reached a sufficient level to choose a new ability. This quest is easily completed by simply visiting the new Character Abilities UI and selecting an ability for the appropriate level. The inclusion of Tutorial Quests is something new that I am trying out and would like to hear folks feedback on. Due to the sheer number of systems added within the mod I feel there is a heavy learning curve associated with it for newer players and would like to ease that transition a bit. The wiki makes for a good first start, but I'm sure most folks realize many people don't check it. As long as a tutorial quest can be relatively easily created then it makes sense having one to point players in the right direction.
Another change is that some abilities that are closely related are being given synergy bonuses to further their effectiveness without making them individually as powerful. An example of this is the ranged abilities Sharpshooter and Master Archer which now each receive a +30% synergy bonus to their effectiveness if you have the opposite talent. I'll be looking to make further passes over abilities for balancing and the addition of synergies, so if you have any ideas feel free to post them in the feedback thread I'll be adding in the forums.
Thanks for reading and as always you're welcome to comment below.