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Thoughts or ideas on skill training "catch up" system

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The only way the catch up system works fairly is to have everyone have to go through it the same.  Every skill trainable all need to be broken into 4 to five equal parts in a row with each node taking twice the time.  Why don't ATs have tier 1 and 2 nodes?   Why do they go 3-4-6-8?   what about T5 and 7 nodes?   Stretch the nodes out.   Look at that confessor 10% crit node...  T6   should it really be 5 separate 2% nodes going T3-4-5-6-7 so that while a veteran player working on that one node, a new player gets 3 done and gets 6% vs his 2% ala catch up.   This is what I expected from the skill trees.   Simply bust them into longer equal linear lines with the same branches and gateways and for heavens sake use every Tier from 1 to 10 in the process.   The page obviously can scroll so fitting it into a single screen cannot be an issue.   Every skill tree should have quite a few T1 starter nodes like the combat basics tree, even AT tree lines.   By utilizing all of the Tiers and starting with say just 2 days at T1 with sequenced steps (or w-t-hell use the golden ratio with 0,1 truncated). T1-1 day T2-2 Days, T3-3 days, T4-5 days...  T10-144days.   That may be extreme but it sure would allow new players to catch up fast and give every player a useful skill within a week of starting to play.   Utilize the full spectrum of node tiers and a very long stretched out skill tree that divides out the gains into true diminishing returns.


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1 hour ago, ringhloth said:

Similarly, how do you add a new player to Crowfall (or make up for missed time)? Quantify how much time everyone has spent training skills, and sort it. Find out the first quartile of active players. If someone is behind that when they finish a campaign, give them a skill booster to get closer to that point. The skill booster is similar to a skill injector in EVE - it's raw time you can directly apply to skills, instantly getting progress. It wouldn't be instant, and the amount of the gap closed would be based on the amount of time you played. So it might take a few campaigns to get to that point, so that you aren't just instantly boosted. 

If you purchase HoT for GW2, for instance, you get a boost to level 80 and a full set of decent gear. You could also introduce a "beginner gear set" every so often, so that the gear gap is a little closer.

 

1 hour ago, Yumx said:

As of catch-up, give new players 1-2 instantly trained skills, depending on the time needed for the skill they choose, for every month that goes by from release?

These are more of what I'd like to see.

The store route is an option but would need heavy restrictions and regardless could likely be seen as unfair and too much hassle to do right.

Something built in seems like an easier and fairer way to go about it.

Longer the game is out, the more training points or % boost one gets down the road. Installing the game takes no effort/skill and I don't want to be rewarded simply because I did so.

My choices are what should matter. The experience, gear, vessels, resources, rewards that I gain should provide advantage as they were earned. Someone new without these will be at a disadvantage and should have to earn their way. However, passive training isn't earned. It is just as empty as grinding mobs for the next level to reach the "end game."

Beyond someone with an older account believing they deserve an advantage purely based on their install date, don't see much downside to a built in catch up for new players. 

Early on I thought ACE wanted new players to hop in and be "viable" rather quickly and that progression would be more horizontal/option based. Unfortunately the current model points to vertical power be it stats or access to "better" options and helps new players in no way. If they want to avoid "Uncle Bob" this is an issue current, not future, devs should figure out as new blood is vital to keep these things going.

As suggested, Skill Extractors/Injectors like EVE could work as long as there are diminishing returns, limited use, and it stays within the player economy. Provides a means for players to shuffle their own training around at a cost along with providing new/friends a catch up if/when they can afford it. It requires someone to give up something they have and provides more value to those without than those with, making it less useful to older accounts and whales. Wouldn't want these in place of a catch up mechanic, but a useful tool that CF could take advantage of.

Link for those not familiar:

https://support.eveonline.com/hc/en-us/articles/207605005-Skill-Extractors-and-Skill-Injectors

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The other side of the coin might be, do we want expedited grooming of alt-armies?

"Catch Up" modes only really make sense to me if new players are completely irrelevant / unable to participate in the virtual world with others.  This is distinctly different than advantage vs disadvantage.  In my personal experience "catch up modes" appeared on the scene in LONG running titles that, by virtue of their design and structure, had obsoleted entire swaths of entry and mid level CONTENT, and the desire was to catapult new players out of those (relative) dead zones out to where "everyone" was really playing, in the newer content dozens of levels and level-earned skill capabilities out.

Premature discussion in CF IMO.  The players are the content here, and the dynamics of WHEN "catch up" might make sense isn't going to be shaped quite the same, or appear within a similar time-frame.


“Letting your customers set your standards is a dangerous game, because the race to the bottom is pretty easy to win. Setting your own standards--and living up to them--is a better way to profit. Not to mention a better way to make your day worth all the effort you put into it." - Seth Godin

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38 minutes ago, Bramble said:

The other side of the coin might be, do we want expedited grooming of alt-armies?

"Catch Up" modes only really make sense to me if new players are completely irrelevant / unable to participate in the virtual world with others.  This is distinctly different than advantage vs disadvantage.  In my personal experience "catch up modes" appeared on the scene in LONG running titles that, by virtue of their design and structure, had obsoleted entire swaths of entry and mid level CONTENT, and the desire was to catapult new players out of those (relative) dead zones out to where "everyone" was really playing, in the newer content dozens of levels and level-earned skill capabilities out.

Premature discussion in CF IMO.  The players are the content here, and the dynamics of WHEN "catch up" might make sense isn't going to be shaped quite the same, or appear within a similar time-frame.

It's not premature, because someone entering late and staying behind is a huge issue with the fundamental design of a time based skill system. And being behind in skills is a huge deal, at least for gatherers and crafters.

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I don't want to see anything you need to or tired to vip purchase. It might be nice revenue but could cause more harm than good, and I agree it needs to be available to everyone. I think just having diminishing returns on skills can work or some sort of training skill speed increase based on how much you have trained globally. Maybe a combination of both.

 

 


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Never understood why they would go passive skill-training.  To me active development of your character is so much more interesting, and active skill-ups and active combat just seemed like it would harmonize together. 

But now we have it, and on top of it crows and vessels. 

The only solution now imo is to have passive training reset like diablo 3 ladders and train up significantly quicker than they currently do, then people can just try to build new characters with each reset (it can be cyclical and happen every 3-6 months) it will keep the game fresh, the meta evolving and let new players never feel too behind. 


Skeggold, Skalmold, Skildir ro Klofnir

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I don't want it to be a "catch up" mechanic, I want it to be a "fun start" mechanic.

I think if we keep calling it catch up, they will just ignore the posts and write it off as a "future Todd and Blair" problem, when really the actual problem is the first 6 months of the game if your planning on being a harvester or crafter, are not actually fun or compelling.

I think we need a first day boost into your crows chosen profession, just like we have a first day boost on archetypes in the form of all the default abilities they have with even basic equipment.

Starting accounts should either get full training on one of the universal basics, or 40-60 tiers worth of training that they select for free. This should apply to all accounts, starting now.

Then it's fun from the start, and there is no future need for a catch up mechanic.

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1 hour ago, VIKINGNAIL said:

Never understood why they would go passive skill-training.  To me active development of your character is so much more interesting, and active skill-ups and active combat just seemed like it would harmonize together. 

But now we have it, and on top of it crows and vessels. 

The only solution now imo is to have passive training reset like diablo 3 ladders and train up significantly quicker than they currently do, then people can just try to build new characters with each reset (it can be cyclical and happen every 3-6 months) it will keep the game fresh, the meta evolving and let new players never feel too behind. 

Yeah I could get behind this. If for no other reason then now your choices matter.


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11 hours ago, SirGeorge said:

 

I always felt that the Current Skill training system to be quite fair. I've gone into 1v1s against people who are nearly maxed out in training for their AT. And found the fight to be rather fair. Even with crafting and harvesting it felt fair, as yes the person has an advantage, it took them months upon months to get there.

 

Untrained vs trained as a confessor is about 40% crit and 130% crit damage.

Not sure how you define fair, but thats not how i, or anyone i have ever talked to, defines fair and balanced (i mean unless you watch a certain news station). 

 

The whole issue is, how do you create a catchup mechanic with out cheapening the time put forth with vets?

The answer is, with the current setup, you cant.

Everything is additive with unlimited restrictions. Thats the prime issue. Time is a direct, unlimited, access to more POWER.

So the solution is, cap out what skills apply to the archetype you playing. Basicly only X amount of nodes can be applied to a archetype.

So more training gives you more flexibility on different builds you can create but not more linearized power. 

Also limits the need for a catch up mechanic and doesn't cheapen the long term training vets have gained. Just make it easier to get that first maxed node amount for new players so they fight  on par with vets. Just the vets have the advantage to changing their build and/or experiencing different aspects of the game.


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1 hour ago, VIKINGNAIL said:

Never understood why they would go passive skill-training.  To me active development of your character is so much more interesting, and active skill-ups and active combat just seemed like it would harmonize together. 

But now we have it, and on top of it crows and vessels. 

The only solution now imo is to have passive training reset like diablo 3 ladders and train up significantly quicker than they currently do, then people can just try to build new characters with each reset (it can be cyclical and happen every 3-6 months) it will keep the game fresh, the meta evolving and let new players never feel too behind. 

Though I think this is practically infeasible at this stage of development, I absolutely love this idea. I'm shocked how much I love it.

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2 hours ago, VIKINGNAIL said:

2. Never understood why they would go passive skill-training.  To me active development of your character is so much more interesting, and active skill-ups and active combat just seemed like it would harmonize together. 

3. But now we have it, and on top of it crows and vessels. 

4. The only solution now imo is to

5. have passive training reset like diablo 3 ladders and train up significantly quicker than they currently do, then people can just try to build new characters with each reset (it can be cyclical and happen every 3-6 months) it will keep the game fresh, the meta evolving and let new players never feel too behind. 

1. I think you don't want 2 understand. Facts and logic are useless when you get this way. But I'll foolishly try anyway.

2. Passive skill training is less of a grind than active training, and it gives casual players an even footing with play-the-game-like-a-job players. This is important in MMO PvP games.

3. This is also a CF basic design feature. If you hate them so much, "CF will not be for everyone", U can always go back to playing WoW "professionally".

4. Only problems need solutions.

5. Horrible Idea! This would turn campaign worlds into extended MOBAs. MMORPG players want to play games with characters who gain skill over a long time, not totally new characters every time the server resets. League of legends is very popular, and seems to have "pro-gamer" followers such as you claim to be (hint).

 

Whatever the catch-up mechanic winds up being, assuming CF lasts long enough to need one, catch-up should never allow a new player to get more than about half the experience theoretically possible from a player starting training at soft launch and never letting the 4 training cues go idle. 

Edited by chancellor
typos

I think the K-Mart of MMO's already exists!  And it ain't us!   :)

 

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2 minutes ago, chancellor said:

1. I think you don't want 2 understand. Facts and logic are useless when you get this way. But I'll foolishly try anyway.

2. Passive skill training is less of a grind than active training, and it gives casual players an even footing with play-the game-like-a-job players. This is important in MMO PvP games.

3. This is also a CF basic design feature. If you hate them so much, "CF will not be for everyone", U can always go back to playing WoW "professionally".

4. Only problems need solutions.

5. Horrible Idea! This would turn campaign worlds into extended MOBAs. MMORPG players want to play games with characters who gain skill over a long time. not totally new characters every time the server reserts. League of legends is very popular, and seems to have "pro-gamer" followers such as you claim to be (hint).

 

Whatever the catch-up mechanic winds up being, assuming CF lasts long enough to need one, catch-up should never allow a new player to get more than about half the experience theoretically possible from a player starting training at soft launch and never letting the 4 training cues go idle. 

You are entitled to your opinion, I think it's awful, but that's okay, good luck!


Skeggold, Skalmold, Skildir ro Klofnir

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I am not sure a major catch-up system is needed. Part of the issue is how do we break the mindset of games needing to be balanced at a player level as opposed to a group level? The biggest gap will be in learning game mechanics and figuring out how to play. A new player also will not have the connections, friends or guild to be able to fully get a group experience, so they will wander around on their own for a while. Give that new player maxed out everything and I would think they would still get slaughtered by somebody who had actually played the game for the amount of time to get to those levels.

I have a few thoughts for this:

  • Some sort of 'practice' world only available to players under some amount of time played. This could lead to people making new accounts just to mess around in that area, but if it kicks you out after a week/month/whatever works, I don't see many people wanting to buy new accounts that often.
  • Some kind of new player recruitment option for guilds / lords / whatever that happens as soon as you begin the game. If you are opted in to this (open recruitment of some sort) then the new player is given your group as one of their options to join. There could also be a recruitment area in the new player world or something.

 

One other thing to think about is that there will be a slight new player advantage in some aspects. Out the gate many people will dive down a training path and may find that they change their mind and have to go down another path (this goes away after everything is completely maxed, but how long will that take? To get each archetype, and each other skill tree). A new player will have however much time of people doing research for them and trying out builds / styles that will be documented everywhere. Introducing any new archetypes would also be a kind of reset button where nobody would have any training in that archetype (of course, combat / exploration and crafting skills would be far behind).

One other thing that might help too is some sort of looting restrictions depending on skill point gaps. Something like X% of your inventory is protected. Or maybe for the first month half of your inventory is protected. This might make new players a resource to groups as mules to carry stuff so some is protected in the event of a wipe.

Sorry my thoughts are a bit all over the place. I just don't think attribute gaps will be the difference maker here.

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3 minutes ago, bionicchop2 said:

I am not sure a major catch-up system is needed. Part of the issue is how do we break the mindset of games needing to be balanced at a player level as opposed to a group level? The biggest gap will be in learning game mechanics and figuring out how to play. A new player also will not have the connections, friends or guild to be able to fully get a group experience, so they will wander around on their own for a while. Give that new player maxed out everything and I would think they would still get slaughtered by somebody who had actually played the game for the amount of time to get to those levels.

I have a few thoughts for this:

  • Some sort of 'practice' world only available to players under some amount of time played. This could lead to people making new accounts just to mess around in that area, but if it kicks you out after a week/month/whatever works, I don't see many people wanting to buy new accounts that often.
  • Some kind of new player recruitment option for guilds / lords / whatever that happens as soon as you begin the game. If you are opted in to this (open recruitment of some sort) then the new player is given your group as one of their options to join. There could also be a recruitment area in the new player world or something.

 

One other thing to think about is that there will be a slight new player advantage in some aspects. Out the gate many people will dive down a training path and may find that they change their mind and have to go down another path (this goes away after everything is completely maxed, but how long will that take? To get each archetype, and each other skill tree). A new player will have however much time of people doing research for them and trying out builds / styles that will be documented everywhere. Introducing any new archetypes would also be a kind of reset button where nobody would have any training in that archetype (of course, combat / exploration and crafting skills would be far behind).

One other thing that might help too is some sort of looting restrictions depending on skill point gaps. Something like X% of your inventory is protected. Or maybe for the first month half of your inventory is protected. This might make new players a resource to groups as mules to carry stuff so some is protected in the event of a wipe.

Sorry my thoughts are a bit all over the place. I just don't think attribute gaps will be the difference maker here.

I think the outer bands with the softer rulesets will be decent practice worlds for players.  Perhaps certain EK settings will help new players get acclimated as well. 


Skeggold, Skalmold, Skildir ro Klofnir

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2 hours ago, VIKINGNAIL said:

Never understood why they would go passive skill-training.  To me active development of your character is so much more interesting, and active skill-ups and active combat just seemed like it would harmonize together. 

But now we have it, and on top of it crows and vessels. 

The only solution now imo is to have passive training reset like diablo 3 ladders and train up significantly quicker than they currently do, then people can just try to build new characters with each reset (it can be cyclical and happen every 3-6 months) it will keep the game fresh, the meta evolving and let new players never feel too behind. 

Yea, I don't often agree with you, but I would like something like this better as well.

Every campaign has it's own skills, and every campaign you enter with zero skills except a selected basics package to start out differentiation. 

Skills train up fast enough that before winter in that world, however long that takes, your fully trained one line if you dedicated yourself exclusively to it. 

The only problem could be EK's, but EK's are where you take your earnings back to, so maybe you just get to keep a portion of your training from the campaign world based on how well you did, just like embargoed items. If you already had the skill from a previous campaign, you just don't transfer that one a second time.

Go to fast paced dregs and win, you get faster training for your success.

Eventually, after many campaigns, you could be proficient in everything, but in all cases you earned it in a CW first.

That sort of model is more fitting to the new game every campaign world way of thinking.

 

 

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47 minutes ago, Vectious said:

Untrained vs trained as a confessor is about 40% crit and 130% crit damage.

Not sure how you define fair, but thats not how i, or anyone i have ever talked to, defines fair and balanced (i mean unless you watch a certain news station). 

 

How is that different then past games though? You said untrained vs trained, which is equivalent to say a lvl 1 vs high lvl in traditional quest grinder lvl games. So a lvl 1 should be able to hold his own versus a high lvl player? Interesting but not likely a very popular view.

If the power curve is shallow like they say they want it then CF will be in a much better place then lvl based games as far as the power gap goes.  

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If starting training time was not too long I would love to see a skill reset with each new campaign world. But have each campaign finished give a time boost modifier to the crow. So the next campaign skills train slightly faster.

Not a long term increase in power but helps move things along and new players still get the same strength as the campaigns are ending. Hell apply that to the general skills with the faster training and the long term AT training stays the same and persists through the life of the game. 

Gathering and crafting should be minutes and hours in the basic trees. Not hours and days. Basic skills should be learned and past in a day or two tops. Specialized skills in a week or two tops. And campaign worlds done and dusted in 3 months or so. Otherwise you are going to have 1-2 campaigns with the world rush and new world smell then as people have more skills trained you completely lose the fresh world rush as veterans have the skills they need and everyone else is just fodder. 

Let the old grizzled vets have the AT skills trained but start fresh with the generals, and the generals trained at a MUCH higher rate. That seems to be a good short term and long term system. That covers the not fun aspects of gathering and makes the choice much more valid. 

What yall think?

 

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12 minutes ago, srathor said:

If starting training time was not too long I would love to see a skill reset with each new campaign world. But have each campaign finished give a time boost modifier to the crow. So the next campaign skills train slightly faster.

Not a long term increase in power but helps move things along and new players still get the same strength as the campaigns are ending. Hell apply that to the general skills with the faster training and the long term AT training stays the same and persists through the life of the game. 

Gathering and crafting should be minutes and hours in the basic trees. Not hours and days. Basic skills should be learned and past in a day or two tops. Specialized skills in a week or two tops. And campaign worlds done and dusted in 3 months or so. Otherwise you are going to have 1-2 campaigns with the world rush and new world smell then as people have more skills trained you completely lose the fresh world rush as veterans have the skills they need and everyone else is just fodder. 

Let the old grizzled vets have the AT skills trained but start fresh with the generals, and the generals trained at a MUCH higher rate. That seems to be a good short term and long term system. That covers the not fun aspects of gathering and makes the choice much more valid. 

What yall think?

 

You have my vote.

It also rather neatly limits the multi account issue.  Keeping a plethora of alts training at a slow leisurely pace, is one thing. Juggling them when they keep leveling and need attention every few minutes/hours, suddenly makes the suggested VIP perk of a skill queue something much more necessary and worth while.

It removes the need to catch up, makes a compelling early game, reduces the effectiveness of ALT accounts, encourages VIP.  

What's not to like about it?

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Another spin on per campaign skills could be training speed based on season.

Spring from start to end the training is fast enough to complete one profession.

Summer, start to end, the training is fast enough to half finish a second profession.

Fall/Winter, training is again reduced, allowing the finish of your second profession the moment the world dies.

Early choices when learning is easy matter, choices near the end can't make up for mistakes/losses by making the wrong early choices.

Wish I could edit, this really should have been in the above post.

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