What’s the Proactive mode?
Classcraft rolling out a new way to manage game-based powers, Hearts, and damage. If you have a free or Premium license, you can take part in this adventure too!
In other Knowledge Center articles, you may see the tag indicating features that work differently in this new mode. Let’s see what this is all about…
Learn more about:
- Current issues
- Proactive mode goals
- What's changing?
- Experiencing the Proactive mode
- Feedback welcome
The current game-based mechanics came to be with Classcraft over 7 years ago! While we’ve made some changes and improvements along the way, they’ve never been overhauled.
Over time, teachers reached out and told us about concerns they had with the damage flow, such as:
- Dealing with damage when it occurs may stop the flow of class
- When damage is not applied immediately, it can be hard to find and track
- It's difficult to know how many Hearts students will lose when they protect their teammates
- What happens when a student protects another isn’t clear
We took these concerns to heart, some we’ve already addressed, others we’re still working on. We came up with the Proactive mode to alleviate some of these concerns and help you have a more positive and simply easier experience.
Proactive mode goals
Because we want a more streamlined experience without removing the magic that makes it work, we defined goals to keep us on track:
- Balance classes, their powers, and their stats
- Provide an opportunity for proactiveness rather than reactiveness (hence the name!)
- Streamline the experience to reduce steps, friction, and confusion
- Give teacher ownership to use this mode or not at first
- Collect feedback to improve this experience over time
The Proactive mode introduces several changes to how powers work that may affect the dynamics in your class between teammates. Let's see what they are!
Less Hearts for Guardians and Healers
Currently, there’s a big disparity between the number of Hearts Mages, Healers, and Guardians have, which can make the Guardian seem overpowered.
Guardians need more Hearts because Protect powers cost Hearts on top of their usual Crystal cost. We naturally placed Healers somewhere between Guardians and Mages, but there’s a huge gap between 6 and 16!
With this new mode, we're reducing the number of Hearts Guardians have to 10 (from their current 16 Hearts) and Healers to 8. Guardians still have more Hearts, but the different classes are much more balanced.
We can safely make this change because protection powers no longer have a cost in Hearts. Let’s compare Protect 1 and Guard 1!
As you can see, Guard 1 doesn't have any cost in Hearts, this means that the Guardians no longer need this huge amount of Hearts because they’re protecting their teammates.
Proactive use of powers
In the current Reactive mode, when a student wants to use a power that’s part of the damage flow (such as Protect), they need to wait until you’re dealing with damage and react to the Hearts being lost. The Proactive powers are more akin to the Heal powers.
Students can activate their Guard powers when the two following conditions are met:
- The student has enough Crystals to use their power
- The target student would benefit from this power being used
Students should be encouraged to use their collaborative powers proactively whenever they feel it's necessary or that their team would benefit from it.
Statuses and new powers
Powers that have been taken out of the damage flow will apply a status to the target in the Proactive mode. What we call a Status is just a little icon that affects how some mechanics work (i.e. Shields prevent damage). These statuses are visible on a student’s profile view (and a few other places, too!)
Here are the major changes:
Protect powers become Guard powers. The Mage's Psionic Shield becomes Barrier. These new powers give the target Shields, which are displayed with the student's Hearts.
How Shields work:
- When a student would lose Hearts, their Shields are removed first.
- Shields last until they are used.
- If a power would give students less Shields than they already have, the power doesn't affect them.
- If a power would give them more shields than they have, they can only get the maximum value from said power.
Example: Guard 2 gives up 4 Shields. If a student already has 2 Shields, they’ll only get 2 more from using Guard 2.
Like with Psionic Shield, a Mage who uses Barrier can only affect themselves, giving themselves 1 Shield.
Restoration becomes Enduring Spirit. The Enduring Spirit status is represented by a lantern by the student’s Hearts.
- When it’s gray, the student will not benefit from Enduring Spirit.
- When it’s purple, it means that Enduring Spirit is active.
If a student would lose all their Hearts and fall while Enduring Spirit is active, the lantern becomes gray again as the status is used up, but the student doesn't suffer any consequences from falling (such as making a pledge and causing a cascade of damage).
Altered Destiny becomes Graceful Fate, which causes a notification to appear on the student’s pledges tab on the profile view. A button appears below any pledge that can be rerolled:
It can be used to reroll any pledge once.
Because all of these statuses are applied before any damage or negative consequences occur, dealing with damage becomes almost automatic (although you can still delay damage to give students time to use their powers!)
Experiencing the Proactive mode
Before we even get to that, we’ll first tell you how you can know which mode you’re using! There are two easy spots to see this:
Teacher home page
All classes using the Proactive mode will be identified on your home page with the icon on the class card:
In Proactive mode, the icon appears beside the class name on the header on the class dashboard to let you know which mode you’re using. When you’re using the Proactive mode, it’ll look like this:
Accessing the Proactive mode
There are a few ways to get a class in the Proactive mode:
- If you create your Classcraft account after the release of this feature, all new classes will, by default, be created using the new mode.
- If your account is older than that, you’ll be offered to enable the Proactive mode the first time you access to a class. You may accept or decline.
If you move to the Proactive mode in one class, it will become the default for all classes you create until you no longer have any class using the Proactive mode.
Enabling and disabling the Proactive mode for an existing class
The decision to switch to the Proactive mode or not is not final once made. You won't be locked out of the current, Reactive mode or locked in the new one. To switch a class to a different game mode:
- On your home page, click the Play button for said class
- Click the class settings wheel icon in the sidebar panel
- Select Game rules
- Toggle on or off the Proactive mode option
Switching between modes will also change your Guardians and Healers’ Hearts. However, damage that's in the queue remains in the queue.
If you were in the Proactive mode and switched to the Reactive mode, we'll keep track of Shields and other statuses in case you want to get back to it later.
You can do this operation as often as you need, although we'd advise against doing it too often as the students may wonder what's happening with their Hearts and powers.
Enabling and disabling the new mode during class creation
If you join in the adventure in one of your classes or if you created your account before the release of this feature any class you create will use the Proactive mode.
In the advanced options of the class creation screen, you can choose which game mode you want to use for this class:
Changing your classes to the Proactive mode is a per-class deal: we want to make sure you have the time to speak to your students beforehand and that you have as much control over this change as possible.
Reminder: We’re only trying this out.
Because we’re using this opportunity to try out the Proactive mode, we'll be asking for feedback on your experience, whether you used it in one class or all of your classes; whether you only used it for a few days or stuck with it.
We'd love your thoughts on this new mode, if it's made your life easier or more complicated, if it's something you'd see yourself using for a longer period, etc.
Keep an eye out for communication from us and, as always, don't hesitate to reach out to email@example.com for any question or concern!