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McTan

Testers
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Everything posted by McTan

  1. So, you just agreed with me? I am not sure why you quoted my post. Another very important aspect of both Chess and Starcraft is the ability of a side to concede the match and end the game "early" - meaning without a Checkmate or without eliminating all opponent structures and units. There are two issues at stake, yes: the current campaign and the next campaign. Each has unique, but intertwined problems. The current campaign has to have win conditions that are understood & minimize any sort of counterproductive winner behavior, such as milking a winning campaign. Instead of setting a timer on the campaign and whoever has the most points wins, put a winning point count, and whoever gets there first wins. No reason to milk a winning Uncle Bob-like scenario, as there is no benefit. The next campaign has the bigger problem, from my perspective. In Chess and Starcraft, it is rare to see the losing side never play the game again. In CF, that will not be the case. Ultimately, I do not think they can avoid this fact: the side who wins a campaign will have an advantage in the next campaign, because their members are more likely to stay and the losing sides will more likely bleed members.
  2. Yikes - "getting a head start" - what? You are just describing winning the game. And besides that, losing pieces does not always mean your chances of winning are diminished.
  3. For me, neither Chess nor Starcraft have an Uncle Bob problem, because when one game ends, the winner cannot bring anything but knowledge into the next game. That is, at the beginning of the next game, there is no difference between the previous winner and the previous loser. The board and pieces are reset. Slippery slope is a bit of a dicey premise, in my opinion. Neither Chess nor Starcraft have a design flaw that I'd call "slippery slope" - this concept seems to be used to obscure a simple reality: winning an early battle often leads to winning the game. Break the pawn structure, wipe some SCVs, it's not a problem, it's precisely how the games are supposed to work. Crowfall needs to worry about these two things because the campaigns last significantly longer than Chess games and Starcraft matches. Notice that slippery slope and Uncle Bob were irrelevant in Hunger Dome scenarios three/four years ago. Ultimately, I think the only aspect they should really worry about is how quickly and easily a side that lost an early battle can regain the character-based power necessary to compete in the next battle. If it's lose one big battle and lose all hope, then we have a problem. If it's lose one big battle and have an uphill struggle that can be done, good.
  4. For me, it's also the ring-around-the-rosey feel. Why do I want to hold the Outpost, besides points? If the answer is, "I don't," then it becomes a pretty mundane exercise of back-capping. I got fairly tired of it in one hour. Maybe when we can free build in the world, I'd feel differently. Perhaps it is also the sheer density of things to capture is a bit over the top and impossible to really defend in a way that isn't capture-capture back.
  5. For the last time, my problem is not 4v1 only. It is 4v1 with complete control over when and where a battle (the point of the game) happens. No single Myrm, played at maximum skill level, is diving into a Keep with no back-up for ten minutes of harassing a group. I am saddened by the reading comprehension on this thread. As for me, I'm out.
  6. You ready for another 15 years of wishing your favorite game had a population?
  7. For the second build in a row, a new disproportionately fast way to level (building architectural frames w/stonemasonry) has popped up. I want to again recommend the usefulness of a more mathematical approach to valuations. By disproportionate, I mean that the raw materials which go into the architectural frame, if sacrificed in their raw forms, is substantially lower. Essentially you look at a crafted item = sum(base material costs - with a lookup for each necessary component to its base material costs, all the way back) * 1.05 or something for "labor" value. I suspect that either architectural frames were valued ad hoc or there is some quantity based multiplier so the nails value is completely out of proportion. What needs to be balanced is raw harvestables only. Benchmarking it on gold = 1.0 value is reasonable. Some multiplier based on quality of material (green = white*2, blue = white*4, etc.). This type of system should be used for sacrifice and for import/export (instead of simple stack counters).
  8. I guess I did a pretty poor job communicating exactly what I am thinking. If you all think I have not thought about hard counters, in all of their forms & reflected on my experiences with Shadowbane and other games with similar stealth, then I'll state outright - "of course I did." My point is that mechanics like insta-restealth on low cooldowns are very bad for long term population, because they place such strong demands on what other people play. So, a stealther gets to play his or her favorite character, but I or one of my friends have to play some boring anti-stealth class or lay a gimp discipline (what happens when we don't get them for free) because otherwise 1 person can harass 10 with essential impunity. You can call that a sacrifice, and one we willingly did (had plenty of scouts in our alliance to keep our Dwarvendom pure...), but it was a major contributor to burnout. Scout player not available to play? Now all 10 of us cannot play, because our track shows a thief and we are not stupid enough to sit there. Also had plenty of times attempting ally-targeted AoEs and the like. Yes things like this work, but at a very, very low rate. So exceedingly low that it is ironic people talking about optimal counters would even bring it up. There were reasons why SB eventually implemented anti-stealth towers and travel stance. Because stealth and speed differentials in the original set-up were too strong. I simply want ACE to consider these problems before they drain population. A post to make sure they put a lot of attention toward guard mechanics and keep and fort anti-stealth and what happens when someone is unmounted by damage and so on, and so on. When the CWs start en masse, and next to nobody has molehunter or illusionist or whatever other hard counters, I expect to see posts about "Roguefall v. Rangerfall" - if that happens, that will greatly devalue all the work that went into all the other classes and disciplines. I am not asking for Dwarves to be able to build "suboptimal" (what a horrible word that must feel like to developers) and defeat anything. I am asking for no single character to be allowed to completely dictate the gameplay experience of multiple others, with impunity. Yes we killed him, but that was his doing more than ours. As for Deernado's opinion of me and this thread, /shrug.
  9. So which is it? I am a noob who got outplayed so my complaint is invalid or I killed him so my complaint is invalid but I am actually good and killed a more experienced and heavily geared player? If you think a player should be able to engage 1v4, in a keep, I don't know what to tell you. It will not be healthy for the game. I bogged you down in the specifics of one situation. Frankly, I have played stealth in plenty of other games and I know what it entails. I have no doubt that MJayed could have left the fight and chosen not to die, despite having engaged us several times in the keep. It was only because he pushed his luck to kill one of us that we managed to get him. He could have just harassed us ad nauseum. In my experience, the biggest distortion to viewing a game comes from those who believe their opinion to be superior beforehand. If you think I am not well-informed on the game, invisi-mounts aside, then you have a ready-made excuse to disregard me. Next time, please do. Yikes. Actually, I do know about the disciplines, but I also know they will not be free post ridiculous test scenarios; I know about the gear disparity, which simply exacerbates the issue; I am not a kid, but even if I were, that ad hominem would do nothing to my argument; guard blind spots is not a good excuse, but will hopefully be remedied at some point; I know I run sub-optimal, if you can believe it not everyone plays the same way, and if you believe forcing players to run a bunch of scarecrow and mole hunter is an optimal way to build a game...; thanks for your Massive experience, I am in awe; no, of course I do not use dash or sprint, or leap, or knock downs, or hurlbat, or any other tools, I am after all a NOOB, I just sat still and somehow MJayed fell over! GLHF
  10. Landed 3 separate rend (bleed dots) and 5 knockdowns (two leap knockdowns, two neckbreaker knockdowns, and one mighty warrior knockdown) according to my combat log. Attacked where he was when he went stealth. This wasn't 4v1, it was 4 players & 10 R10 archer guards v 1 stealther. It's not a question of skill, of which he displayed plenty, it's a matter of power differential. Not power differences either, but differential. Nothing I have is anywhere near as powerful as stealth or speed. And I mean not even close. All the powers I have demand that I am in combat, whereas stealth and speed have the complete upperhand when it comes to determining whether I get to use any of my powers. And mind you these speedsters and stealthers also have good combat powers. It's not like he is a stealth scouter, he is a stealth murder-hamster. Of course, I also did not call for removal of what is special about a class (I never would - I have long advocated for more unique powers). I called for a drastic re-thinking of what those mechanics mean for the competitive spirit of the game. Note that your idea of a proper counter requires much more significant sacrifice than it did for a stealther to be uberstealth or a speedy to be a speed burster (it may have been mounts at times, you are right there). If you believe the situation above is exactly what an Assassin is good for (I think he was a Duelist), then you have a very very high regard for rogue classes. With a role reversal, if the four of us attacked his keep and he was home, we would have died a horrendous death. Actually, even if he wasn't there, we would have died to the R10 archers. I am not calling for homogeneity, nor would I. I am calling for balance, which is ostensibly what they are focused on very soon, on what I consider the most important aspects of a PvP game (engaging and disengaging fights), and highlighting the two powers that currently have dramatic imbalances with regards to those aspects. I, for instance, would also prefer tools to counter stealth and speed, rather than removing it. But, until I get those tools more easily (noting that disciplines themselves will eventually not be free), I will continue advocating for changes to both stealth and speed.
  11. Warning: Wall of Text We are coming down to the wire on development and implementation, so for probably the last time, I feel the need to bring up the two issues that I believe are holding Crowfall back (and hold most PvP games back, including, notably Shadowbane). I hope that @thomasblair @jtoddcoleman interpret this post not as hostile, but as urgent. Both have to do with massive power differentials regarding whether there is a fight and for how long a fight continues. There are several reasons why I might lose a fight that I am okay with: outnumbered, out prepared, outplayed, probably some others. What I am never okay with is giving certain players a permanent and powerful advantage regarding whether or not there even is a fight. And second, if there is a fight, giving certain players the obvious advantage in choosing whether and how to end the fight. They do not have to play better, they simply have these kinds of advantages. There are two mechanics in Crowfall that yield these types of permanent advantages and disadvantages. (1) Stealth We had a 10 minute battle today with MJayed in the Chaos keep. He was alone (guinea duelist, I believe), we had four (all over level 20, in voice comms: a radical cleric, an arbiter cleric, some kind of myrmidon, barbarian champion). He had better gear and is no doubt more experienced and a better player than each of the four of us. But, I would say it is highly unlikely that he is better than the four of us together (experienced gamers of all types of games, especially MMOs, and fighting as a team for years). But the way in which he is surviving and killing us is contingent on the stealth mechanic being laughably strong. This is not meant as an attack on him, at all. I suspect, however, that he was having a damn good time puppet-mastering us around like idiots. You'd think we never played a game before. But we literally could not even just stand and not chase (the obvious counter), inside the very center of the keep. There is no reason a player should just be able to flit in and out of stealth, completely determining whether they would continue fighting - ever after being hit several times, and when they are surrounded by tons of R10 guards (how do guards not have stealth detection...?) We wound up killing him only because he over-committed to kill one of us. If he wanted to, he could have chosen to never die, despite his choosing to engage four of us, in our own keep. This is a scenario in which the single player should have died a quick and fruitless death. Potential remedies: Make stealth (1) temporary - maybe 10 seconds, (2) condition restricted - only if you have not taken damage or done anything aggressive in 15-20 seconds, (3) costly - full stamina bar, movement speed 10%, or something a long those lines. Albion Online did stealth very well. (2) Speed differentials There should not be certain races and classes which are faster, in all circumstances, than other races and classes. Mobility is a massive, massive advantage, especially with aiming and artificial range limitations. Yesterday, I was running less than half the speed of a Fae Assassin. I was in survival tray, with bard speed! This is completely awful gameplay feel. To watch these characters run across my screen while I am trying to haul ass made me laugh out loud in frustration, it felt that awful. I was engaged in a fairly large battle at a Fort. As we drove the opposition back, some of my allies got to fight, I got to run around like a goofball, never even in range to hit anything, despite leaps and sprints, and allies landing CC on fleeing opponents. I also wanted to tag along with a group of allies running to a fort engagement. I could not do so, because they left me completely in the dust. I was unable to engage in the best parts of the game, large PvP at Points of Interest, because of the massive speed differential. I know the claims of different classes and races thrive in different circumstances. It has nothing to do with circumstance, it is a permanent advantage in all circumstances, especially with aimed combat. Potential remedies: Make speed differentials all (1) temporary (like leap and sprint and blink), (2) condition restricted - not usable for 60-120 seconds after receiving or taking aggressive action, (3) costly - getting hit while in trailblazer or while using bard speed could maybe take half health or stun for 10 seconds or something. I am sure this seems biased from a Dwarf standpoint. If Dwarves were way faster than everyone and had access to super powerful stealth, I would complain all the same. To give one player complete control over whether there is an engagement, and whether they die in an engagement is to give another player complete lack of control over PvP combat, the primary purpose of the game. It removes my ability to play the game. I play a chase, CC Barbarian Champion, and even so, I cannot ever decide whether or not I will fight certain races and classes - not based on their skill or my skill, but simply on the supremacy of particular mechanics. (Interestingly enough, I would claim these two mechanic imbalances, combined with aimed combat, have also lead CF to a massive over-reliance on CC, which, ironically, in an attempt to mitigate the advantages seems to have exacerbated them). You can definitely try some very hard-counters: freely given and permanent perception, and cheaply given long duration, un-cleanseable snares. tl;dr These are my feelings about Crowfall, as it approaches feature complete. There is so much to like about the game, but these are game-breakers, in my humble opinion. They will lead to CF being Roguefall or Speedfall, or any number of funny but sad pet names denoting dominant play-styles. I'd suggest a group of five Devs on Dwarves versus a group of three Devs on speed and stealth build assassins, duelists, and rangers, and see which side has a better time. I'd also suggest any players strongly objecting to this post do the same, on the Dwarf side, before disagreeing.
  12. I do not agree with the premise that sub-optimal play should be discouraged because I think that is too short-sighted for a large group/guild game. Arguably CF would do better if it encouraged strong identity building in order to weather the losses that will be suffered (end of campaign asset loss as well as true CW loss). CF is not an RPG, but it's also not a MOBA, where identity is shed for optimal composition. I didn't finish the whole thread, but it occurs to me that this issue is alleviated by rule-restricted campaign worlds. I know my Dwarf-only/Dwarf-main guild will seek out CWs that enforce deity-based or race-based guilds or win conditions.
  13. Also, the Class vs. Discipline training trade-off is spot on, in my opinion. More of that form of player choice should be in all games, IMO.
  14. Re: Racial Crafting @jtoddcoleman @thomasblair The problem, as you both noted, is that players will rebel against arbitrarily needing to be a Dwarf to be the best blacksmith (this was my own reservation about the OG Forgemaster idea). In other words, if you make it so that one Race is absolutely superior than other Races in a particular crafting, players will not enjoy this limitation. The counter, in my opinion, is to make it not arbitrary. The reason I would want to be a Dwarven blacksmith is to make the best Dwarven equipment. It's not that Dwarf blacksmiths are the best blacksmiths, but they are the best at making Dwarf-specific items. I think the simplest way to implement this would likely be to have Race-specific benefits baked into items (a simple +10% improvement to the outcomes of crafting a breastplate, when worn by a Dwarf). This could be shown perhaps on the armor, with a +number in a different color with hover-over to show which Race it helps. I think you could also do dropped recipes that can only be equipped by a certain race/class to be crafted. So, The Hammer of Kane drops, well only a Stoneborn can craft it. As I think about it, I would almost prefer it not be race-based, but deity-based. Given that vessels are taking on a different kind of flavor than typical MMO race, deity choice still feels to me like it should be just a huge part of the player/crow identity, instead of vessel race. But, I suspect I am greatly in the minority here with respect to deity choice mattering. Anyway, first thoughts.
  15. Not to mention we now get to see complaints when someone scams someone else by selling them a 1/5 charges scroll as if it were a new scroll!
  16. What do you propose instead? Consumable? Harder to implement with set charges, for sure.
  17. Exactly. I was never trying to say that ACE should abandon putting in individual character progression. I was simply trying to say that, when the character progression is over (or so slow as to be essentially over), what will be left? For me, that is the core game for CF. The game is not a character progression system, in that character progression of all forms is supposed to be externally motivated by wanting to win campaigns. The hypothetical that keeps coming up about players who are not motivated by the core vision of CF is a perfect example of why MMOs have been going through such a rough decade. Obviously it is true that players are motivated by different things, that is why games needs to focus on what makes them fun, and have that be what collects and keeps its core player base. This is opposed to trying to implement systems for the sake of keeping players. That layer of veneer wears off insanely fast (see: Archeage, BDO, Albion, etc.). All game designers should put their vision before thinking about audience retention, or you are putting the cart before the horse. That idiom is literally meant to say, you have to have the thing that pulls in front of the thing being pulled. In this case, the game vision and design before the audience. I am, personally, really happy that ACE does not seem at all concerned by the current lack of community engagement and growth. But, then again, they have some great veteran designers who know a hell of a lot more than keyboard warriors like me. Edit: Albion Online is a perfect blueprint for what not to do for CF. By all accounts they had a fantastic PvP MMO in early beta, made a ton of changes designed to "keep" players, ostensibly based on data they were getting from their beta tests, then released a dramatically changed game, flopped pretty hard, changed back, and now have a good game without the population they should have. Please, dear lord, do not overanalyze or commit to player data from testing. It's a totally different situation. I, for one, play entirely different schedules and goals with games that are not released.
  18. Ultimately, this whole problem needs to be restated. It's not that offline progression demotivates. It's that online progression, in many games, masks the fact that the game itself is not that fun without the constant endorphin rush of "experience gain." Crowfall is laid bare by its lack of experience gain. It makes all the fun aspects of the vision that are not implemented be glaring absences. It does not surprise me that, by all accounts, Crowfall is about to introduce a large system of in-game progress. I also hope beyond hope that their PvP-fun vision (building keeps, sieges, winning campaigns) will enter the game successfully. It's really the only long-term aspect that matters, IMO. Without a fun game, the band-aid of in-game progression will make Crowfall another MMO with a 3-month population.
  19. Didn't sound like it. They said cap at 100% then, as I understood it, the crit defense would be applied. Unfortunately.
  20. I agree with your opinion on Recall, but I disagree that it didn't work as intended in SB. The point is to give people who are harvesting the opportunity to return to safety that balances with the threat of death and loss. I want there to be more risk, but I also don't want fast travel of any kind, any recall mechanic, any summoning mechanic, and any long-term speed or stealth mechanics. I'm not going to get those, and we are not going to get no recall in Crowfall. So, sadly, the best we can get is a Recall that is not OP. Edit: A LOT depends on track, and if that mechanic ever really makes it into CF.
  21. Recall can work fine. It almost worked well in SB, and in that game we also had summoning. Make it loud, long cool-down, long cast time. Simple as that. I am disappointed that the first implementation did not meet those criteria already.
  22. I understand what you are saying and agree they can make motherlodes better. I do think, however, needing certain harvesters to log-on is also a recipe for problems. Guilds will be much more sustainable if everyone can contribute to the harvesting burden.
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