March 15 2024 - 3:00 pm

Operation Medic Bag: Blog Update #4 – Fortitude and Adrenaline

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Hello, heisters! This is Miodrag “Mio” Kovačević, game director on PAYDAY 3, and today I’d like to talk to you about our new Fortitude skill line and the new “Adrenaline” mechanic.

We talked about these features in a PAYDAY 3 stream back in January, but as it always goes with game development, there were some changes based on both internal playtesting and limited testing with some of our Payday players.

“Adrenaline” was previously mentioned by its internal name “Overheal,” but we’ve changed the name to better reflect some changes we’ve made to it in the meantime. Adrenaline is temporary health you get whenever you heal above maximum health with a Medic Bag or a First Aid Kit. Your max Adrenaline is always equal to your max health, so if you have 100 health (the player default), you can also have 100 adrenaline on top of it.

Adrenaline is on the top-most layer of your defenses, so if you take damage, you will first lose Adrenaline. If you have none, you will take damage to armor. If you have no armor, you take damage to health. (For reference, Cloaker, gas grenade and Zapper damage will first deal damage to Adrenaline and then to health, but it still bypasses armor.) This ties into the temporary nature of Adrenaline; you lose 1 point of Adrenaline every 2 seconds, but if you take damage, this “decay” as we call it is paused for 6 seconds.

As mentioned previously, Medic Bags and First Aid Kits will give you Adrenaline if you heal with them above max health. Medic Bags give you adrenaline at a 1:1 rate, so if you gain 20 health above maximum, it’s 20 adrenaline. First Aid Kits give you Adrenaline at half rate, so if you gain 20 health above maximum, it’s 10 adrenaline.

With the introduction of this new mechanic, we also have the new Fortitude skill line, so let’s take a look at the current skills:

  • Base: Increase your base maximum health by 50. Whenever you heal to or above maximum health, you gain or refresh GRIT.
  • Aced: Your maximum number of “downs” is increased by 1 and your bleedout time is increased by 50%.
  • Stockpile (Mastery): If you have a deployable bag in your loadout, it has 2 additional charges. (Note: these 2 charges are added before Deep Pockets)
  • Health Siphon: Whenever a crewmate heals using your Medic Bag, you heal for 40% of the amount they healed. If this heals you above full health, the excess amount is added as Adrenaline.
  • Unyielding: Your maximum health is increased by 15 for each “down” you currently have.
  • Supraphysiological: Whenever you have Adrenaline, you gain 10% additional Adrenaline for each “down” you currently have.
  • Walking Tall: Your Adrenaline degrades 25% slower for each “down” you currently have. If you have any amount of Adrenaline, you can use First Aid Kits to pause its degradation for 10 seconds.
  • Pain Asymbolia: As long as you have Adrenaline and EDGE, GRIT, or RUSH, the effects of these buffs are doubled and you take 10% less damage to your Adrenaline.

As you can tell, Fortitude is all about capitalizing on Adrenaline. It also scales with the number of downs you have, so lighter armor will benefit the most from it. In addition to this, double-dipping into the Medic line will also help you maximize your Medic Bag uses.

Since this new line makes Adrenaline a heavy skill investment, we’re also using this update to raise the maximum number of skill points from 21 to 28. The final skill point is still at level 100.

Here is a more detailed overview:

Level Total points
1 2
2 3
5 4
8 5
11 6
16 7
19 8
23 9
27 10
31 11
37 12
40 13
43 14
48 15
52 16
55 17
58 18
61 19
66 20
70 21
77 22
83 23
86 24
90 25
93 26
96 27
100 28

One difference from our previous announcement that keen-eyed players might spot is the final upgrade: “As long as you have Adrenaline and EDGE, GRIT, or RUSH, the effects of these buffs are doubled and you take 10% less damage to your Adrenaline.” This skill originally only gave a 50% damage reduction if you had Adrenaline and any buff. We’ve decided to change it, as during testing it played too similarly to armor. This way, if you want to still have armor-level defenses, the base 10% damage reduction and 20% from having enhanced GRIT will give you 30%, which is 5% better than regular armor. But you can also play more aggressively with EDGE and RUSH getting enhanced.

Please let us know what you think of these additions to the game both before and after they go live. We hope you find health-focused builds more viable now and a decent alternative to armor.

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