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About Kest

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  1. You guys crack me up. The situation is not as black and white as some of you may think. ACE is using Unity true, but that doesn't mean they're handcuffed by the limitations of the engine. We don't know what parts of the engine they're using and how they're using it. A game engine only becomes a limitation when you are stuck to the confines of what its capable of doing. For example, maybe you needed a specific algorithm that solves a problem in a precise way. If you're not able augment the current engine with your own unique code, then you're stuck in a box until Unity adds that specific feature to their engine. Let's not forget that the current environment has debugging enabled on both client and server-side. Debugging is extremely CPU intensive. With debugging off, you could see a sizable increase in performance depending on the scale of debugging...how much data they're capturing. Also, let's consider server side performance. I'm not sure if they're using containers or VMs...but...despite what you may think, this is not a single server with a maximum capacity of 2500 players. Every single zone you load into is a server that lives in a larger cluster. Speaking of server performance - to make it relatable to you guys, think of GPU performance. Let's say you spend $500 on a solid mid-tier card and you're feeling pretty great about it. You also have the latest and greatest 120HZ monitor, so you have to maintain - at minimum - 120 frames to take advantage of the monitor's capabilities. You load up a semi-intensive graphical game, and notice you're only able to maintain an average of 75-80FPS. You spend hours tweaking graphical settings, your system, hell you even decide to start overclocking. God damnit you spent a lot of money, you're going to squeeze out every damned frame your hardware is capable of. Maybe you push your average to 90. Well, that's great but it's still not good enough. You decide - screw it - for my purposes I guess 90FPS will have to do. I really don't want to drop $1000 or more on a high-tier card to get to that 120 mark. This is the most likely scenario of what ACE is dealing with. At this given moment, they can't justify spending the extra money that would allow their server cluster to auto-scale beyond the limits they have set. So they decided to address the problem as you did with your GPU tweaks. It's a bit more complicated than google searching a GPU overclock template, but my guess is they made improvements. Those improvements may have made things more efficient, but ultimately the bottleneck still occurs. The point is, no matter how well constructed your code is, in some cases you're going to hit a hardware wall. To get past the hardware wall, you need to scale. To scale you need money. So, do they spend the money now - in an Alpha build - on the server infrastructure? Even if it was to prove a point, it's a waste of money. In the process of checking their code and performing tweaks, they may have been wanting to know - ultimately - did we screw up in our design or are we hitting the hardware wall on our test servers? So yes, they may have tried to improve server performance, but just like you, they decided "screw it. For now, this will do." That doesn't mean the "unity engine is trash, this game is done." My advice is pretty simple. If you don't know how any of this works, you should be skeptical on what information you allow to accept as truth. Being negative for the sake of negativity has never and will never serve any meaningful purpose in any aspect of life. There was some mention earlier about Albion Online developers complaining about the Unity engine, as if it is the reason their game failed. If true, that's a pretty bold statement considering their initial network and server infrastructure was developed by a 5 year old. Oh yeah, it was a Unity Engine issue for sure.
  2. This is my first playtest. I chose balance because of the description lol. They'll get to it at some point. Faction balance will be an issue for another day. It's not a terribly difficult problem to solve.
  3. Ultimately, you're going to have to accept that there will always be zergs in MMORPGs that offer PvP as the front-line content of choice. A zerg only becomes a problem when the game's design only offers a join or lose choice. As far as I can tell, Crowfall has more outlets for finding meaning in PvP beyond the simple choices. And even if they don't, it's not a large task to get there. As I mentioned before, with a concept as simple as friendly-fire and full-loot PvP in place, you have just created an alternate meaning to PvP that has nothing to do with your faction's success in the campaign. I think the main problem ACE will have to grapple with - in reference to the zerg - is server performance. An interesting problem to solve programmatically and operationally, but very difficult to reach the point you want to be.
  4. It's important to understand that the imbalances that can come from a three faction system begin and end with the game's underlying design. It's not that the 3 faction system doesn't work, it just doesn't apply well when its not carefully implemented. There's not a single solution to this problem, it must be addressed in multiple ways. Here are a few: Friendly-fire - There is one truism with zergs - they're impossible to micro. With friendly-fire enabled, ability spam is a problem shared by all, not just the side that's outnumbered. Obviously, this can be taken advantage of...so a system would need to be developed to prevent griefing...but there are a lot of examples to choose from. Harvesting/Crafting bonuses - One problem with faction based systems is that the under-populated side loses in all areas of the game. They're outnumbered in PvP, have less harvesting/crafting output potential, less options to farm XP, etc etc. One way to balance this is to increase harvesting yield/crafting success for the under-populated side. Or even XP boosts. Full-Loot PvP - This is already planned if I remember correctly. Even if your side is losing the faction-war, it doesn't mean PvP is worthless. Faction-less - ACE has come up with the solution to the "end-game" by creating campaigns that have an end. There's no reason to stop there. Why not run a factionless campaign where guilds themselves are the "factions."
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