First off, we have Essence Orb, an item that lets you convert HP to SP as much as you want in a single turn. No other item comes close in allowing conversion b/t the 3 main resources (HP/MP/SP) like this, except for the rare Pixel Ether (another similarly broken item, but one which at least relies on much limited resource, SP). Other means of resource regeneration either cost a turn (potions, healing spells, etc.), have a low ceiling (healing pets/guests etc.), or impose some other cost. W/ this item, you can pull off any skill at any time, which is completely broken.
IMO the number of times you can click on the Orb should be limited, e.g. 1 time by default and +1 additional time for every 50 END. It should also prevent you from switching back to a different item after switching to it, to impose a cost on defense for the next turn.
I agree with this, Candy Bag got hit with the limit of 2 and I think that was too harsh. I like the idea of 1 additional click every 50 END. However I think the prevention of item switching is too much. Also, remove the ability for higher levelled players to use the lower levelled versions and that should just about do it.
Next up, Shadowfeeder Pendant. This item allows you to spend some SP to try for an extra turn, and lets you try as many time as you want as long as you have SP to spare (see a problem when combined w/ Essence Orb?). Against bosses this is astounding as a free turn gives you the opportunity to switch to some defensively nonviable equipment, pull off a skill and switch back back. Or, you can just do a round of damage for free and survive a shorter fight that you otherwise wouldn't.
Fixing this item is pretty simple--make it skip your turn if you fail. That imposes sufficient risk that the player would have to carefully consider whether to use it.
SFP is not broken or OP on its own. It's just the combination with EO. Fixing EO solves the problem, SFP can and should remain untouched. Making it skip your turn if you fail is too harsh and renders the item completely useless
Then we have the Prime Chaos Orb, widely considered the most powerful item in all of AQ. This item scrambles the enemy's resistances (like the old Scrambler Beam) and gives them a stackable lean, which makes them do/take more damage. And of course, you can use it multiple times per turn, w/ the only cost being that it randomly disables one of your menus, until your Items menu is disabled.
Many people will disagree but I don't think the elemental scramble needs a change. The only reason why that is OP is because items like BoB and Kindred exist which allows you to 1 shot anything with the right element. Those are the items that needs nerfing (just put a cap on the charges, easy fix imo) not the elemental scramble ability of PCO.
This item gives frees players from inventory pressure as they can scramble a monster's defenses away from an element they aren't carrying a weapon for to one that their best equipment targets, and the lean stacking can be used to make the monster take massive damage.
I disagree with the first half of this point. I think just about everyone playing the game who knows what their doing have all 8 basic elements covered in some form and aren't relying on an unreliable elemental scramble every battle. I agree however that lean stacking is the problem.
This item should definitely not be able to be used more than once per turn, and should cost a turn to use. Or, if we really want it to be used multiple times a turn, it should disable an equipment menu (i.e. not Attack or Spells so the player can still act) for the rest of the battle, not just a single turn.
Making it not be able to be used more than once per turn and/or making it cost a turn to use kinda renders the current cost useless unless they completely rework the cost of using it. I think the best way of balancing this item is capping the number of SUCCESSIVE uses at 2 or 3. Failed uses still retain the original cost of disabling a random menu category.
Leaving these items as is breaks game design & discourages equipment exploration. Why try other items when you know these are the best? I hope they get properly balanced soon.
While I do agree that these items break game design, they are also a large part of what has made AQ "fun" for most of the playerbase for so many years. Taking them away completely is a surefire way to make many of the more casual players quit the game. The goal should be to make the items strong without making them OP (or worse, useless). Alot of the recent nerfs/changes to items have made them useless or not worth using at all and this is what pisses players off. There are plenty of "best" items for different use cases so players actually do use quite a large variety of items depending on their different playstyles and the reason players enjoy using them is because they are strong. For me personally, AQ's strength lies in its unique combat system that allows you an almost endless combination of different items and effects. Players enjoy seeing big numbers and how much boosting they can do to push a playstyle to its maximum.
I am going to sound harsh here but if the argument is "staff can't make new, fun and strong items without completely ruining all of the old strong items" then that shows their creativity is limited, it's no longer solely a case of old items being too OP. Fun and balance aren't mutually exclusive. Honestly, I don't think I've seen a single complaint about the game not being fun before the balance changes hit, even from the more hardcore players, in fact it was quite the opposite. As someone who is more in-touch with the casual community, the morale has dampened quite a bit with all these nerfs we are getting to items. I will iterate again that I believe it's necessary but the way it's being done is too heavy-handed.
And no, no one is accusing the staff of any integrity issues if they let unbalanced items remain in the game. I have no idea where this even came from.