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Ungood

a Revision to Game Play.

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Ok I get this is late in the Alpha Game, with a Pre-Alpha game that looks great, and runs great.

So I get that what I am about to toss out might be way to too late, and not even well received, or maybe both, or maybe a third or fourth option. in any case, here is my suggestion, and it's kinds a two part thing.

just to be clear this all started when I was talking with a friend while we were out harvesting and gathering, and well ultimately, we got ganked, but that made us think about how the game was set up and how it could be made better or at least more defined.

So these are my suggestions to improve the game overall from my sampling so far.

The First Part:

Skills.

I get that we only have 3 Skill Branches, so, like everyone is going to take Exploration and either Combat or Harvesting

What I would like to suggest is additional Tracks to make things no so cut a dried in the choices area.

For example, I would like to see a Stealth based Skill set up. I get that this would make Stealth abilities Account bound as opposed to character/class bound. But given how OP stealth abilities are, this is not a bad thing to just give them to everyone that wants them. The Stealth lines would work both to provide stealth abilities and also to provide counter stealth abilities, IE: The Ability to Hide, and the Ability to See Hidden.

The reason for this, is now it becomes a choice on if you want to Explore, or if you want to use Stealth.. a hard choice for some.. an easy choice for others. But still a choice none the less. The big point with this that, now there could be a much higher chance to run into someone that can counter stealth (with no way for the opposing player to know if they could or couldn't) than there is already. So it would add a proper risk to the game for people that use or depend on stealth to give them a perceived easy win or easy escape from losing.

Another Option would be something like Traveling Skills.I know we have exploration, but, since mounts will be put into this game, it would make sense to split Exploration into "Harvesting" and "Travel" skill sets. Travel would focusing on run speed, decreased falling damage, access to better mounts, as well as increased moment while on mounts, and Harvesting, well, would make you better at punching trees and stuff.

This would make it so that some hard choices would need to be made.

Second Part.

Classes.

Ok, well one thing I have seen in this game is that the balance is really bad. Which, is not the have all end all of a game, but, as I see it, if there is going to be a divide (and a huge one) between the players that are out harvesting and those out looking for PvP, to the point that if you are playing a "Harvesting" character you may as well not even bother trying to fight, why not simply put in Harvesting/Crafting Classes?

The idea would be simple, they all get starting trait line like everyone else, but theirs allows them to harvest faster and reduce tool wear, better drops, etc.

Then you have 3 classes.

Heavy Harvester, Built off the Champion Class, since they already use a Great Axe, they kinda fit Thematically with the 'Heavy Lifter" vibe, and they gets a 3 point line, Blacksmith/Miner, Stonemason/Quarry, Jeweler/Mother-load Specialist.

Medium Harvester, Built off the Ranger Class for obvious Thematic reasons, which would have their 3 trait lines be, Leather worker/Skinner, Necromancer/Graverobber, Woodworker/Logger

Light Harvester: Built off the Cleric Class, with 3 Traits lines that would be Alchemy/Quarry,  Cooking/Logger, Rune making/Miner

 

This way these classes would have their own leveling system, their own benefits to crafting and the like, and this would eliminate a lot of need to have two leveling systems, by making crafting "Classes", as opposed to giving crafters and harvesters the illusion they are combat classes, and it's not like we won't all have designated crafter toons when the game goes live, as I hear they will take a lot of work and materials to make the proper Discipline , so we won't be swapping them out like we are now, so we may as well go all the way.

 

Just my suggestion.

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in response:

Skills - stealth based tree. This was removed and put into talents, so no, they will not put it back into passive training.

Travelling - I don't see the point to this. They cannot make it so you go super fast. the fact that you get mounts to increase your travel speed seems like it's more than enough. In fact, you get 2 versions of that. A normal pack pig, and a swift mount. More mounts may be added at later time but that is after core mechanics is in.

Harvesting class - I'm all for that, but it depends on what racials you give. Although from what you show, it seems like you are combining both gathering and crafting. As it is now, racials already give crafting. You are probably thinking of talents which provides gathering bonuses instead. I'm all for a gathering specific class, just not your particular suggestion.

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They really should put Stealth back into the Skill Tree, as it would fit better there, but they should also put in stealth counters into that line as well, which I am betting they didn't.

 

Yes.. I am combining Crafting with Harvesting, to the class itself, to link Crafting Levels with Character Levels, so they don't need to make a whole separate crafting leveling system, a characters ability to craft would linked to their character level,. and to complete this, they would get EXP from harvesting nodes as opposed to killing mobs.

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why should they when it's in talents? what is your arguments for it about from "should"? You may not have noticed, but I don't think anything in the passive skill training for combat is skill related. it's more related to damage or control etc.

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Simple really.

Stealth , both the ability to use it, and the ability to spot it, is not something that should be class specific. It is far better served for it to be part of the Skill Tree than mingled with the Talents and Disciplines. Not only does this allow players to play in a manner that works for them, it adds a level of danger to the game for everyone playing, when players have no idea if the Champion they are going to attack could be able to spot stealth, or even hide themselves. That is what makes for great PvP, unknown risks. Right now the game is really at the point where players can pretty much know their chances to win based on simply looking at someone, that should not be the way a PvP game works.

Also, if I had my way, I would also make Individual weapons part of the Combat Skill Tree, so that any class could be able to use any weapon based on the Skill Tree progress. Want to use a Mystical Throwing Hammer as an Assassin, train it up and now you can use it. Locking weapons to class is only good for the start "A Champion Starts with a Great Axe" but as you progress, the player could end up using any weapon they want.

In fact the more they Put into the Skill Tree, the more players are forced to make hard choices on what they want to progress, and making hard choices is what making a good PvP game is really about. If the best choices are obvious, then it's really not good game design as all the other choices were wasted development and may as well not exist.

In fact I would split Combat up into Offence and Defense, so that players would need to chose which they will be excel at, but this would allow over progress, any class to use any armor and any weapon.

But here is the trade off, Stealth only works in Cloth and Leather, but, then the developers put in a fourth tier progress (Forth Progress step down) that allows players to use stealth in Mail and another line that would allow them to use Plate.

This allowing players to build what they wanted, and making all the choices somewhat even to each other.

Only by giving players equally attractive choices, do you build an engaging game.

To give an example, one of the PvP games I play has loadouts, and we are given a fixed number of points we can use on our loadouts, so, do we invest in armor, shields, defensive stats, or do we invest in weapons and offensive stats. It's a trade off we need to make, because we only have a limited number of points, we can't have it all, so some hard choices need to be made when we make a loadout.

Equally so, we can build a loadout that works for us, how we like to play. if I want to hang back and launch bombs, I can, if I want to get up close and personal and kill people with a electrified mace, I can. For a simple battle arena game, almost no two players are alike, and each one builds to work on what they excel at and how they like to play.

Some loadouts work better when you have a team of players with you, other loadouts are designed for the soloist and recon player.

Now in that game we also have levels, the higher level we are, the more options we unlock, but they also had squad position tracks, this was broken down into Heavy Weapons (IE: Long Range Weapons), Assault (Melee), and Tactical (Short Range Guns and Melee), and as you leveled you would put points into the kind of Unit you wanted to play. When you hit max level you would also have maxed out all the trait lines, but as you were leveling, it was better to focus on one and work that.

Now, higher level and Veteran players did have a edge over a new player in the loadout alone, but it was not so much that a new player couldn't win in a fight, only they have less a chance. But skill and tactics were the key factor in the outcome of a fight.

That game has a 4 faction system, and I have swapped over to other factions, made a brand new character and went into combat with a zero level loadout and held my own, which to me, is how a PvP game should be. Because, even tho they had more options, and I'll admit, I lost a few more times with the zero level character then I did on my maxed out one, I still laid a beat down on enough of them to make an impact, because, regardless of our level or the options open to us, we were both limited by how many points we could put into our loadout. They could not make a god-like loadout simply because they were higher level.

That is how Good PvP should work.

Now I am not 100% sure how to apply that to this game, or even if it can be applied to this game, or if it can be applied at all. But this is the suggestion topic, so I am making a suggestion.

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Everyone can train every skill, so everyone would eventually have stealth. That's just bad. You can't have every player with stealth. I know what you'll say next is that they could limit it so you have to choose, but that isn't a good solution either. Stealth would be too powerful and everyone would be forced to take it.

Your idea about the classes isn't good either, as they don't have the time or money to do something like that before launch, and it's probably not something they are going to do post launch as it's a significant change. Stuff like that you can do when you are designing the game, but once it's live, it's a lot harder to do. 

These ideas are the product of you and your friend getting ganked. There's a much easier solution: bring more friends. If you want to be a harvester, join a guild and have people watching your back while you do your thing. 

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I agree with Arkade. The passive skill tree is there to improve on existing skills, not to unlock skills. If you are suggesting to unlock skills via passive skill training, then there would be no point for a class. If you are suggesting that passive skill training is to improve on stealth or anti-stealth but to unlock it, you need to have certain class/talent, I'm fine with that. The devs have moved a whole bunch of racial and class specific stuff out of passive tree for a reason. Part of it is probably complaints about how slow it was to get into combat. Putting things back in is reversing the situation back to what it was before.

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8 hours ago, Arkade said:

Everyone can train every skill, so everyone would eventually have stealth. That's just bad. You can't have every player with stealth.

Why not?

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8 hours ago, Arkade said:

 Stealth would be too powerful and everyone would be forced to take it. 

Stealth is OP as it is anyway, so they may as well give it to everyone, to balance it out.
 

8 hours ago, Arkade said:

These ideas are the product of you and your friend getting ganked.

Yes, thank you for stating the Obvious, in fact I already said this was born of getting ganked in the OP. 

8 hours ago, Arkade said:

There's a much easier solution: bring more friends. If you want to be a harvester, join a guild and have people watching your back while you do your thing. 


This "solution" has already been addressed in another thread, and has been debunked by others as being neither an easier or viable solution to this problem.

Thank you for your posts and input.

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9 hours ago, Ungood said:

Simple really.

Stealth , both the ability to use it, and the ability to spot it, is not something that should be class specific. It is far better served for it to be part of the Skill Tree than mingled with the Talents and Disciplines. 

That opinion totally goes against the vision for the game.  Stealth is specifically described here as being about class.

 

 

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A good idea (imo) is a suggestion given in the proper moment to the right person.

And this idea was written in a public suggestion forum, to let all us readers give arguments and share our opinion about it.

Therefore no surprise the OP received this information:

4 hours ago, KrakkenSmacken said:

That opinion totally goes against the vision for the game.  Stealth is specifically described here as being about class.

In conclusion the idea of generalized stealth, by the only point of view which matter here (ACE's point of view), is not good.


Catelyn: War will make them old, as it did us. I pity them.
Mathis: Why? Look at them. They're young and strong, full of life and laughter. And lust, aye, more lust than they know what to do with. There will be many a bastard bred this night, I promise you. Why pity?
Catelyn: Because it will not last. Because they are the knights of summer, and winter is coming.

A Clash of Kings, Chapter 22, Catelyn II.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Crowfall Discord Channels: international (english) - italiano

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18 hours ago, RikForFun said:

A good idea (imo) is a suggestion given in the proper moment to the right person.

And this idea was written in a public suggestion forum, to let all us readers give arguments and share our opinion about it.

Therefore no surprise the OP received this information:

In conclusion the idea of generalized stealth, by the only point of view which matter here (ACE's point of view), is not good.

which.. IMHO.. is kinda ironic.. given in this post alone I have seen.

 

On 1/19/2019 at 11:01 PM, sanfall said:

in response:

Skills - stealth based tree. This was removed and put into talents, so no, they will not put it back into passive training.

 

Which means, originally.. they did intend and even implement Stealth in the Skill Tree, as I have suggested.

 

So.. it's hard for me to believe that it was against their original idea of stealth, when that is what they did at the start, yes, they changed their minds on this.. but, the key point here is they Changed their minds. 

I just think they ought to change it back.. because it would be better that way.. the way they first did it. ;)

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In the end, I am sure we all want the same thing, for this game is be successful, for it to be fun, and for it to attract a large enough player base for us to have ample people to play with.

 

I would like to believe that is the goal for all of us here, both players and developers.

 

As it stands, the game in it's current form will not do this. PvP games live and die on their balance, in the games current form, Players will come, see how lop sides and unbalanced it is, and leave.  A large part of this, is that things like stealth are very OP. Now maybe this is because counters have not been put in, or that what has been put in needs some hefty re-work to make more viable, or maybe they simply might need to revise how stealth works to make it fit better.

All of these are also viable options, but the status quo is not.. 

Just saying.

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Yes, we all want it to be successful and fun. And yes, it currently is not as fun as it could be.

Having stealth as a passive skill training for everyone is not how i imagine fun would be. And while they had stealth stuff in Passive skill tree previously (although i'm not too sure since i never trained combat), it did not unlock any skills. Skills were still specific to class. Previously, it would require passive training to improve effectiveness. Now, talent does that and it allowed players to get to lvl 30 in under a day and be good at pvp'ing so they can have fun straight away.

This game has classes for a reason, and that is to lock people into specific skills when they choose a class. Assassins and duelists can stealth, clerics and druids heals, knight and champion tanks etc. This game is not designed to be a classless game where anyone can be anything. You choose a class, you get specific skills.

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On 1/19/2019 at 9:19 PM, Ungood said:

we got ganked, but that made us think

Remove stealth? ;)

Seriously though, they have anti-stealth on races, classes, disciplines with more to come. 

This is not a game, it is testing of an unfinished product and things will be broken until they aren't hopefully.

If you are out harvesting a lone or with others and have no anti-stealth, that's on you. Not that I believe stealthers should have free kills just because, but they have limited use and serve a purpose. However, when there is a small population, lots of imbalance across the board (gear, levels, disciplines, classes, etc), and lack of team work, it isn't surprising to see stealth and gankers having such an easy time. Lag or lack of makes a huge difference.

I believe they have plans to add more diversity to training. Animal husbandry, taming, farming, map making have all been mentioned. Comes down to time, money, priorities. I'd much rather do something exploration related or anything other than harvesting/crafting while still focusing on combat. Hope it comes.

As for what is a "crafter/harvester" vs a combat character, this continues to change with how passive training and disciplines work. As is, someone can still equip good gear, train harvesting/crafting & combat, and only give up some disciplines which shouldn't mean instant death to a full combat player. Believe this will change more once they remove weapon mastery disciplines or whatever the plan is. Full fledged "trade" classes would be interesting, but would require changing so much that I don't see the value, especially when what they have or will works fine.

The game is far from finished, you likely got ganked by someone better geared and taking advantage of your weakness and it sucks. Come release, people should play accordingly. If you are going to main a harvester, build knowing gankers exist. Find people doing the same. If everyone has flares,  perception, or whatever anti-stealth, it shouldn't be so painful. Simply having others and situational awareness is good as well.

Giving everyone stealth would be horrible. Same for anti-stealth. At least not in the forms we have now. It should be limited to specific character builds that give up something to gain something. Currently I believe the issue is some options forgot to take away and just gave gave gave.

 

 

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14 hours ago, Ungood said:

which.. IMHO.. is kinda ironic.. given in this post alone I have seen.

 

 

Which means, originally.. they did intend and even implement Stealth in the Skill Tree, as I have suggested.

 

So.. it's hard for me to believe that it was against their original idea of stealth, when that is what they did at the start, yes, they changed their minds on this.. but, the key point here is they Changed their minds. 

I just think they ought to change it back.. because it would be better that way.. the way they first did it. ;)

You misunderstand.

It was in the skill trees UNDER each of just the race/class options.  Those have been completely removed, so that why it was pulled from the passive trees, not because they pulled it from exploration, which is where it would be found if it had ever been intended for all races/classes.

 

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17 hours ago, APE said:

Remove stealth? ;)

I am legit wondering how you went from my suggestion of  "Put Stealth in the Skill Tree so everyone can utilize it" into "Remove Stealth"

It's kinda an impressive jump in logic to be honest, and I am wondering how you drew that conclusion.

17 hours ago, APE said:

If you are out harvesting a lone or with others and have no anti-stealth, that's on you

Which is also my suggestion of putting Anti-Stealth in the Skill Tree, so.. again, everyone can access it, and I won't be out there with no anti-stealth.

17 hours ago, APE said:

It should be limited to specific character builds that give up something to gain something. 

Well currently that is not the case, so, if they fix that, that would be grand as well.

I gave my suggestion on how I think would be a good way to address and resolve this issue, but if they want to go a different venture, then that is what they will do.

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2 hours ago, Ungood said:

I am legit wondering how you went from my suggestion of  "Put Stealth in the Skill Tree so everyone can utilize it" into "Remove Stealth"

It's kinda an impressive jump in logic to be honest, and I am wondering how you drew that conclusion.

Which is also my suggestion of putting Anti-Stealth in the Skill Tree, so.. again, everyone can access it, and I won't be out there with no anti-stealth.

You missed my wink...

Why not do the same for everything in the game? Just toss out the entire class system and let us have 100% control of our characters. Great idea, wrong game/design.

Your issue seems to stem from the somewhat broken nature of stealth classes or probably more so specific players/builds. Which are the result of an unfinished game with only a handful of people in it. Stealth isn't OP just because it's Stealth. 

Also, they aren't or hopefully don't balance around 1v1. Look at Templar for example. They seem pretty great for team play, especially with POIs. Not so much solo. Compared to an Assassin that if balanced right, shouldn't be able to easily walk into a group of 20-50 players without being detected a mile away. You have to step back and look at the game as a social experience, not tunnel down to only a specific situation.

You mention making hard choices and that makes for a good PVP game (I agree), so why isn't choosing XYZ build that is currently available not a hard choice? You can play a particular class/race/discipline build along with using specific powers and simply having more people with you. Along with having proper gear, situational awareness and so on.

Putting all that together takes effort/skill/time and likely hard choices. Maybe Joe Champion doesn't want to run an Anti-Stealth Discipline but his guildmates need him to watch their backs while they harvest. That's a hard choice (not really if you have good friends). I have no doubt that organized guild in pre-alpha are running specific team builds for this exact reason.

I totally get what you are suggesting and in a different game it might work wonderfully, but not Crowfall.

If stealth/anti-stealth were up for grabs, they would cancel each other out and make it pointless, more so than it already might be with what's been shown/talked about so far. If an Assassin can't stealth in, kind of defeats the purpose of playing one. This is where devs get creative and add in "Deep Shadows" and allow stealthers to bypass all anti-stealth. But it costs a Major Discipline or whatever and is on a 5 min cooldown. Start making "hard" choices.

2 hours ago, Ungood said:

Well currently that is not the case, so, if they fix that, that would be grand as well.

I gave my suggestion on how I think would be a good way to address and resolve this issue, but if they want to go a different venture, then that is what they will do.

Which they will as redesigning core systems at this point based on a random person's suggestions isn't likely. Although they do surprise.

I'm not totally sold on the leveling/talent system, but it is better than the passive system(s) they tried. Some of what I wanted changed is now part of character building, despite plenty of vocal folks saying what they had was great and didn't need to be changed. Devs apparently figure things out eventually.

Stealth and such mechanics seem to swing back and forth from OP to meh across all games. Someone gets ganked, devs nerf, stealthers compain, devs buff them, repeat. As is, they seem to understand and it's great they already have anti-stealth in and more planned (Tracking?). Balancing it out will be tricky and that's why I'm not a game dev.

What it comes down to is what you believe is "Good PVP" might differ from the devs and fans of what they are making. Crowfall is far from my perfect game, but it hopefully does enough well that I can enjoy it. If not, I back all these games :D

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10 hours ago, APE said:

You missed my wink...

Why not do the same for everything in the game? Just toss out the entire class system and let us have 100% control of our characters. Great idea, wrong game/design.

That is a great idea, and I was going to build up to that premise with the Combat Skill Line, being broken down into Ranged and Melee with Skill Tree lines based on weapon, so that anyone could use any weapon choice, and the main variables would be based on "Position" in the group.

Also having Combat Broken down into Offence and Defence, with Armor Lines, IE: Cloth, Leather, Mail, Plate, as well as having those Skills give boons to other Skill Trees.

  • Having Stealth Bonus in the Cloth Armor Skill Line, 
  • Having Spotting Bonus in the Plate Skill Line.
  • Having Evasion and Dodge Bonus traits in the Leather Line.

Yes that means that trade offs now happen by the armor you wear.. which is what makes for good game play, when you have to make Trade-Offs.

Then you simply break down the classes into Core Purpose Classes:

  • Healer
  • DPS 
  • CC 
  • Tank
  • Harvester/Crafter 

With trait lines that directly augmented these roles,.

IE: A Tank Class would have a Trait series that gave boons to damage mitigation, boons to armor benefits, etc. This way there was Trade offs in both styles of play building a stronger inter-dependency.  

Right now,  as it where, some classes are very strong solo, the fact that a single player was able to drop myself and 2 other people, which gave birth to this topic, being testament to this problem and game design in the current state of things, and they don't make any trade offs for their build to be that way, they function just fine in a group setting as well.

That is bad game design no matter what the game is, and it's really bad design in a Team based PvP focused game like Crowfall.

 

10 hours ago, APE said:

Your issue seems to stem from the somewhat broken nature of stealth classes or probably more so specific players/builds. Which are the result of an unfinished game with only a handful of people in it. Stealth isn't OP just because it's Stealth. 

Going to respectfully disagree with you here, in almost every game I have ever played, Stealth is totally broken and OPAF, and truth be told, the uninspired class design of Crowfall, coupled with the pre-alpha development stage, simply augments how badly broken the current stealth mechanic is.

Again, they may have a plan to address this, which I hope is on the table. I wish them good fortune with that.
 

10 hours ago, APE said:

Also, they aren't or hopefully don't balance around 1v1. Look at Templar for example. They seem pretty great for team play, especially with POIs. Not so much solo. Compared to an Assassin that if balanced right, shouldn't be able to easily walk into a group of 20-50 players without being detected a mile away. You have to step back and look at the game as a social experience, not tunnel down to only a specific situation.

Ideally, if you balance for 1v1 then 20 vs 20 also balances out.

But, The thing here is that group size is I believe limited to 5, so they should design combat for what they have defined as a Group

This means the game should be balanced for 5 vs 5, which will also balance out in 10 vs 10, and 20 vs 20, and on up.

 

10 hours ago, APE said:

You mention making hard choices and that makes for a good PVP game (I agree), so why isn't choosing XYZ build that is currently available not a hard choice? You can play a particular class/race/discipline build along with using specific powers and simply having more people with you. Along with having proper gear, situational awareness and so on.

A hard choice is when you have to pick between two equally viable and good choices. 

That is not what is in this game, and something I am trying to bring to light.

Let me explain this, More people is not an Option, when 3 vs 1 should have been a steam roll to the solo player if this game was even remotely balanced. Even if it was ideally balanced for 5 vs 5, (Group vs Group combat)  still the 3 vs 1, the superior numbers should have won.

On top of that, picking an OP AF build is not a hard choice, yes I could just go play an Duelist, or a Assassin, or whatever OP AF build they have out now, but that is succumbing to the bad class balance. 

No, It is far better to bring up this  issue now, and work or at least know that this is being addressed.

Otherwise, you will end up with a game where everyone gravitates to the few OP classes and all that other work and all those other classes may as well not exist, which is a waste of both development and game space.

How does that really end? Well they either embrace that this game is broken and that class balance will never happen, they make excuses like "Just get more people" but that is foolish because then equal numbers the OP class will still win, or they spend many years after launch trying to balance the game, nerfs, buffs, FOTM builds become the norm, as each path ends with some new class being OP AF.

Is that really what you want in a game?    

10 hours ago, APE said:

I totally get what you are suggesting and in a different game it might work wonderfully, but not Crowfall.

I am going to again, respectfully disagree, Crowfalls set up of both Character Trait lines and Account Skill, make it a ideal set up to teat this system.

In fact the idea of breaking the game down into Core Purpose Class (Tank, DPS, CC, Healer, Harvester) with augmenting Trait Lines and having things like Weapon Choice, Stealth, Armor, etc, being on the Skill would be inspired.  

In fact, now that I think about it, a Racial Skill Line would also be good.

10 hours ago, APE said:

What it comes down to is what you believe is "Good PVP" might differ from the devs and fans of what they are making. Crowfall is far from my perfect game, but it hopefully does enough well that I can enjoy it. If not, I back all these games :D

No. Good PvP is not really up for debate, challenging fights with balanced classes will always make for the best PvP games, this is an absolute.

Now, some people like the existence of OP classes as it helps cover their lack of skill, or simply because they are scared of loss and can't face a balanced fight. That does not make Good PvP different, that just means they are not looking for Good PvP. They are looking for games with poor balance  where they can either grind, build, or buy their victory, hence why P2W was so profitable.

But I will say this.. Crowfall is a PvP game, and PvP games live and die on their balance. When this game goes live, "bring more people" is not going to retain anyone when they are losing fights that are 3, 4 even 5 vs 1 because this game does not have it's balance sorted.

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