However, in light of the recent patch and 'visit' to monster stats, I feel like this has become an even larger problem. I went down to Scaraba to do the turn-in and as usual brought out my Agni for fire-based Psychic Waves. A scarab gets on my Agni and he starts taking 1200-1500 per hit; while I'm in the middle of casting psychic wave to save poor Agni from his fate, a second scarab spawns. Before I even have a chance to finish Psychic Wave and spam Spirit Cure, poor Agni has already been brutally murdered by a "mob" of two scarabs (keep in mind, my 1 fire PW isn't enough to kill the scarabs so they're still alive as well).
I'm just guessing numbers here, but I'd say Agni level 2 has roughly 12-15k hp. Granted, I have not maxed spirit sympathy, so the extra 4 skill points there would be an additional 20% hp and give him ~17k? So how is it that I'm supposed to make any sort of use of my spirits on maps where I can level when at any given point in time (ESPECIALLY during an increased spawn turn in event) 1-2 mobs can spawn and murder my elemental before I can even finish a cast? Also, even if I COULD spam spirit cure, it only heals Agni by 10% of my hp which'd be about 2700-3000 (thanks for the HP nerf, by the way, that also didn't help our case), at the cost of taking that hp/sp from me; pretty difficult to keep up, not to mention while I'm spamming spirit cure, I cannot attack and more are still spawning. Even in a full party setting, it's very easy for these scarabs to spawn and target our pets and murder them before we can really do anything about it.
It was bad enough that most MVPs worth using our elementals on have a full screen attack/AOE spell (earthquake/hell's judgement/etc) that will nuke the snot out of them and make it so we can't depend on our summons, now we can't even depend on them in normal leveling environments. I will be the first to admit that they can be very powerful - making our psychic wave elemental based, and ventus giving a 1 sec cast reduc, and even the armor "endows" for tanking purposes combined with insignias. But the fact that a super-novice could take one of these things out is really disheartening.
My proposed problems with Sorcerer Elementals are thus:
1. There is no real "AI" for these, they don't run, they don't try to avoid monsters, they just stand there and take it. This is further complicated by:
2. You cannot control their movement. They will stand there until you move a certain number of tiles away, then they will move based on that - You can't move them to avoid mobs, it's a real pain to position them in a corner to minimize spawn on them (unless you're camping the same spot, you can expect that they WILL run ahead of you and get mobs of their own).
3. Their hp is ABYSMALLY low - for being a 3rd class skill which takes a fair number of skill points to get and materials to summon EACH time, you would think they'd at least hold up a little better than a level 99 character in these "3rd class" maps.
4. The ONLY option to heal them is through Spirit Cure which has a cast time, takes a fair amount of the caster's hp/sp, and restores a pathetic amount of hp to the elemental (ie: it barely outheals one scarab hitting it, if two come along, they will outdamage your heals and you will be left with 0 hp/sp yourself in 9 casts); plus while you're spamming this, you have no options for attacking and remedying the situation - you can TRY to whack the mobs with your staff and hope and pray they change to you (and that no more spawn and go after your poor pet).
5. They are costly to summon (3 or 6 rough stones, or 1 pure depending on what level you use) - this isn't really a problem since they are fairly powerful, but if we have to resummon them every other mob, then it is both costly and difficult to manage your inventory weight to keep a 'fair' amount of summon stones.
I'm not saying change all of the above; I'm not looking for overpowered elementals that can't be killed. I'm not looking for elementals to become like homunculus', and I honestly can't speak for implications in PVP as I do not meddle in the WoE or PVP scene, but I do think that the current state of things leaves elementals completely lacking in PVM (unless you already totally overpower the map, obviously my elementals are not going to die to orcs). Again these are 3rd class skills and you would expect them to be moderately useful to places where 3rd classes go, not summon and have it die 10 seconds later. I strongly think this is an issue that should be evaluated and discussed until some sort of balanced solution can be determined and implemented.
Edited by Hokubokosni, 21 December 2011 - 10:03 PM.