Hello my name is 1DMG and I have been playing Maplestory since 2005. I would like to talk about something near and dear to me,
the state and design of the pirate class Jett. I would like to inform the developers of this class, whether they are in America, Taiwan, or elsewhere, of the aging state of Jett as of v206.
Each player invests no small amount of money, time, and effort into their character, and my Jett is no exception. However the inaction
that surrounds Jett reflects a continuous neglect to this class and to its respective players. My goal is not to increase or decrease damage, but to update this class's balance and design in likeness of the current game.
Updates to Jett are generally large but few.
Since its inception in 2012, the Jett class identity has been in a muddle. It was created as a class very similar to Corsair, which was soon to receive its revamp in the RED update, and as a re-skin to Zen in other regions.
In 2014 v152, Jett recieved a revamp to create the Jett similar to what we currently have today in 2019.
In 2017 Jett recieved a class-wide improvement update to its skills increasing its damage output.
In 2018 Jett recieved its 5th job, and in 2019 v206 we recieved updates to improve Jett gameplay in the form of attack delay decreases and a damage buff.
This latest update to v.206 mainly sought to address inconsistences and quality of life issues, a more ergonomic change.
However I would like to say that the design of Jett, the very core of the class's identity and functionality created in 2014, is in need of major renewal, and the latest update is insufficient and misaimed at addressing the most critical flaws.
The most grievous flaw of Jett is the lack of direction in its skillset.
Every single class in Maplestory is built around a core gameplay goal.
Mechanics and Corsair micromanage summons to help them maximize damage.
Kanna and Kinesis manage special resources in Mana and Psychic Points to ensure constant skill usage.
Angelic buster, Buccaneer, Kaiser charge up gauges to use more powerful skills.
Every explorer has a core specialized skill, such as Fire Poison upkeeping damage over time abilities or Marksman managing their distance from the enemy.
Other classes such as Cannonneer and Dualblade are thematically tied to their weapon; cannons are slow and powerful, two daggers can unleash lightning fast attacks.
Even Beast Tamer, which recieved a large update in v206, had the identity of four Beast modes, each with a different role to perform in bossing, hunting, support, and mobility.
Jett/Zen, which was born as a clone of Corsair, now not, lacks any of that. The class's skillset is reminiscent of class design before 2013, prior to RED update. There is no player goal when playing Jett other than to keep attacking and moving.
There is virtually no synergy within the skillset, no maintenance the player needs to upkeep to optimize performance.
In other words, there is lack of gameplay in this class. The skillset is just a glorified collection of skills that do damage. There seems to be no logic to put these skills together, as besides not being beneficial towards each other, they actually do not work well together in the first place.
I can give simple examples of ways the class can have more gameplay.
For example, Jett can use slower, cooldown-timed skills such as Planet Buster or Singularity Shock to apply a mark to the mobs hit. This mark enables a higher percent chance for Starforce Salvo to proc Strikeforce Showdown. This encourages players to use different and riskier skills to inflict more damage.
Or, Jett can have a gauge to charge the Core, when the Core is charged, the player can use one of the skills in the kit with an enhanced effect, such as a larger hitbox or more damage.
At its current state, Jett has no playstyle in its skillset, and is thus the most important flaw to address.
Most classes, especially recent classes such as Pathfinder and Ark, have utilities to help them deal damage, survive, or support the party. Binds, invincibility skills, and party shields are examples. Classes geared towards bossing such as Marksman and Hero typically lack these utilities to offset their damage-dealing capabilities.
Jett has no built-in binds, invincibility, or damage reduction abilities. Previous to v206, there was no unique benefit to having a Jett in the party, and because of these shortcomings the class is very fragile and poorly adapted to the added bosses in Maplestory since 2014.
v206 sought to implement at least one form of party interaction by making Gravity Booster a party skill. While this is good way to create at least some party interaction, 7 years of having no skills that affect the party (besides Maple Warrior, which every class has in some form) makes the class's identity clearly not one of support, but of damage-dealing.
This identity is missed however, as explained in my next point.
It is a well-known concensus that this class is one of the weakest classes in the game, and despite the damage increase in v206, remains as one of the weakest. Because this is probably an easy problem to fix, and was addressed slightly by the final damage increase in v206, I would like to talk about instead hunting and bossing efficiency.
One of the most popular ways of Jett hunting is by using Cosmic Upheaval to pull mobs to the player, where they can easily be dispatched with minimal movement. This is effective, but at the same time not good gameplay and is very passive despite Jett having many skills that move the player.
Jett players are somewhat forced to do this because besides Cosmic Upheaval, there is no skill (without a cooldown) they possess that can attack higher than one platform (unless the platforms are extremely close together).
This was attempted to be addressed in v206 by making skills able to be used midair, however the effect is minimal and insufficient to change how Jett hunts because the skills still possess very small hitboxes.
Jetts either use Starline Four or Backup Beatdown to hunt. Starline Four has a long horizontal range but a very tiny vertical range. Backupbeatdown is much weaker, but players used the skill by "tapping" the skillkey so that the secondary effect at the end of the skill, which is much stronger than holding it down, can be used more often and immediately.
In v206, while backup beatdown was increased in size and can be used mid-air, it seems the secondary effect, which was what players used the skill for, was dramatically decreased in size. Because the skill is so weak without that secondary effect, even my Jett, which is strong, cannot hunt efficiently (1-hit holding it down) with it.
When bossing, Jett players have two options. Jett players may use Starforce Salvo, which randomly can proc Strikeforce Showdown at a 10% chance. This may sound like the main bossing method, however Jett's have a stronger skill in Starline One. Starline One, when upgraded through nodes, deals high damage because each node level increases the damage by 7%, up to 420%. Because v206 made Starline One much faster, this 1st job Jett skill is now stronger (by as much as 30% from testing) than Starforce Salvo, a 4th job skill. Starline One however, despite being stronger, has a tiny hitbox, a bit larger than a regular attack, which requires the player to stand right next to the boss, with a class that has low survivability. This is poor design, no class should be relying on such a basic, tiny skill to maximize their damage or abandoning their strongest skill because it is too risky.
Starforce Salvo on the other hand, though weaker, is ranged and far safer because it can be used while moving. The damage it deals however is highly variable to chance, as Strikeforce showdown has a 10% chance to work. This causes Jett to have unreliable performance in bossing because Strikeforce showdown is responsible for a large amount of the damage dealt when opting for Starforce Salvo.
This class has many bugs that make this class more difficult to play. The most obtrusive or critical ones that come to mind are:
Cosmic upheaval causing disconnections in Chu Chu and Lachelein maps.
Strikeforce Showdown does not always hit the same monster Starforce Salvo is hitting.
When Starforce Salvo key is released at the same time Strikeforce Showdown is activated, the player is locked into an animation until it completes.
5th job skill Gravity Crush has not operated properly since it has been created, party damage does not influence how much damage it deals when it explodes.
Suborbital Strike cannot hit certain bosses, in particular ones that are elevated from the ground, such as Gollux's Gem, parts of Horntail, Pink Bean statues.
Turret Deployment was never updated to use character damage formula.
Maple Warrior has a cast animation.
Classes are the most important part to a player's perspective in Maplestory. At its current state I can say with confidence Jett is Nexon's weakest link in terms of the game's playability, and the time and effort players put into this class is betrayed by the lack of development. New players choosing to play this class will be falling into a trap.
I personally felt very dismayed when I saw the small amount of changes done to the class in v206. The population of Jetts is understandably very low in Global Maplestory. Updates come every 2-3 years for this class despite its state. I hope that this piece will encourage further and swift development.
Thank you for reading.