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trugamer

Gameplay - Some Core Mechanics Please Do And Dont's

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Please excuse my spelling!

 

 

Targeted Combat V.S. "skill" Aiming

 

There are a number of reasons why I believe targeted WoW combat is better than "skill" aiming. There are also some good counter arguments. My argument is simply this!

 

I believe there are too many factors in order to create something that works, is balanced and enjoyable. Ultimately I have never seen a system that REALLY WORKS! Personally I enjoy WoW-style targeted combat, I think it works, I think it's fun and I don't want to see it changed, I just want to see it done right! HOWEVER...

 

since writing and re-writing this text with the desire to really give the inspiration I have received from Crowfall I have come up with the following ideas of "compromise". Crowfall desires a scenario in which attacks can have friendly fire so this is what I suggest:

 

1) Give us targeted Combat systems. I believe this makes combat much faster and more rich. As a compromise you can make some skills take advantage of "aiming" like where to drop a meteor, or how much charge you put behind a skill. The charge you put into a skill could mean a number of things e.g. accuracy or power. In this way by dividing the aspects of combat into strategy, you can turn the strategy into clickable skills so as to take advantage of both systems, whilst not losing sight of that frantic speed that only comes with targeted combat. 

 

2) Compromise on which skills have the ability to effect other targets, for example the standard "auto-attack" should only effect the target, even if your friends are being silly and trying to jump into the way. However other "select" skills will have the ability to hurt yourself and your allies. For example a AoE buff should not affect your enemies, but a wide swing could hurt your friends.

 

The key here is to compromise! A Mage should have attacks he can cast directly onto his foe, but also ones that travels to it. Though the fireball may hit a friend it could just as easily travel up into the air, over friends, and drop onto it's foe. In such cases it becomes difficult to decide what to do, but with battle strategy divided into skills called say (Tactical Skills) we can have the mage pay 2 seconds while his mind focuses and then the spell can travel to the foe and avoid friends.   

 

I've come to know this recurring pattern as the fun over facts problem, many games suffer when they substitute fun for "realism" it's like when graphics were good enough but developers just kept pushing for realism over creativity of design which is becoming less of a problem now as developers take more "risks".

 

Another of these issues could be "balance" why can a mage insta-hit a target but the archer's arrows must travel a route. One compromise might be...since arrows are so vital to the archers viability, let them go, we could easily believe a skilled archer could not only shoot very quickly, but also very easily at his target, whereas with a trap he lays, his allies could easily suffer if they don't pay attention. With Tactical Skills we can legally implement arrows hitting targets.

 

 

I believe with such considerations we can punish for poor observations and such thus inducing the level of strategic combat that I believe Crowfall is aiming for. I imagine this will be one of the most talked about and debated aspects of Crowfall, as well it should because essentially it's the very heart of the game.

 

 

 

Character Progressions/Skill Trees and such

 

I would like for my characters class will really fill it's role e.g. I don't want to roll a warrior and have to re roll my talent tree to play him properly with a bow and re-roll again in order to use a sword. I want to earn and spend all those points filling my tree to the MAX and being able to support my team with a bow and a sword in a way that a warrior would. I believe this is a bad design idea and I think it limits gameplay and I think it punishes the player for no reason and often leads to "best build" scenarios. Ultimately I believe each class will feel fuller. 

 

Just for honourable mention (you don't have to read this paragraph) GuildWars 1 is one of my favourite games, there are literally 1000s of skills and even though you are painfully nerfed to only being able to use 8 at a time, there are superb examples of the supremeness of the strategies available even with only 8 slots, clearly highlighting examples when characters are often unkillable and able to do 8 man job stuff solo. I think it's worth to mention because if I were making a game, I would run through the skills of GW and probably use the lot and also it's a good source for inspiration. If you know GW then you know how poorly GW2 pales in comparison (dishonourable mention) e.g. a mesmer holding a greatsword, I think even necros can, but Rangers and Thieves can't LOL.

 

 

 

What is Crowfall?

 

I have seen much confusion with some of the concepts of CF and people getting worried about it not being an MMO like WoW. I am here to tell you, that's just not true.

 

Please youtube a game called Albion Online (in fact use this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AgOlAjULTvo as the guy explains it all really well). Now you should be familiar with Albion you should easily see that some areas of Crowfall are still VERY familiar with the MMO experience of games like WoW. If you also remember reading that many maps will be procedurally generated this means that this game totally has the potential to shine well above the bog standard MMO experience offering new kinks for you to discover at every turn! You sort of get the Albion world, but with a smaller persistent world and more procedurally generated instanced ones. 

 

Though something was mentioned about there being no uber end game loot, I think that just as Albion has these solo and 5-man dungeons Crowfall will incorporate something similar with their procedural design algorithms and the enemies will drop uncraftable loot that is better somehow. If this is not the case, I would like to rally for such an aspect, I just think it adds to the gameplay e.g. my standard +8 bow that has enchanted arrows of FIRE!

 

 

 

Group Finder Tool

 

You probably will do this already, but have a terminal that: for the map zones you select list each solo member and non full party groups with level/class details included etc. and allow people to start groups that way. This makes it easy for really lazy people (*cough me) to group, which is often vital, more effective and always more fun!

Edited by trugamer

-Truthe Yashikawa

The Lantern Watch - A Crowfall-first guild.  Welcome Home.

http://crowfall.shivtr.com/

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I can see where your concern is coming from, but it doesn't really address the fact that one of the first things they denied was tab targeting, and Friendly Fire isn't really applicable if players can select foes without any room for missing.

 

I'd read the second half of this subject, you might find the working compromise your searching for.

 

http://community.crowfall.com/index.php?/topic/2528-concerns-about-telegraphs-readability-and-controls/#entry65642


a52d4a0d-044f-44ff-8a10-ccc31bfa2d87.jpg          Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes... Than if they're upset, they'll be a mile away, and barefoot :P

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I'm fine with a groupfinder only so long as it doesn't ever actually teleport/fast travel players.  Groupfinders that do that quickly turn an otherwise immersive world into a series of unconnected event lobbies.

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I can see where your concern is coming from, but it doesn't really address the fact that one of the first things they denied was tab targeting, and Friendly Fire isn't really applicable if players can select foes without any room for missing.

 

I'd read the second half of this subject, you might find the working compromise your searching for.

 

http://community.crowfall.com/index.php?/topic/2528-concerns-about-telegraphs-readability-and-controls/#entry65642

 

I'm very curious to see how they will do this, because I really did not enjoy GW2 and games like Tera and Neverwinter often limit the number of skills you can have to 5-6. I'm not saying it can't work I'm just saying I hope they are reasonable with their decisions.


-Truthe Yashikawa

The Lantern Watch - A Crowfall-first guild.  Welcome Home.

http://crowfall.shivtr.com/

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The last thing a MMO needs is a group finder tool. It only damages the community aspects of the game.

 

Wow I couldn't disagree more. It's a great design choice making things run MUCH smoother adding GREATLY to the community aspects. You open up a terminal find some people and group with them, their position is logged onto your map, you find them an start playing AND communicating together, what could be more social than that! 

 

I really can't see the argument you are trying to make!

Edited by trugamer

-Truthe Yashikawa

The Lantern Watch - A Crowfall-first guild.  Welcome Home.

http://crowfall.shivtr.com/

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I'm very curious to see how they will do this, because I really did not enjoy GW2 and games like Tera and Neverwinter often limit the number of skills you can have to 5-6. I'm not saying it can't work I'm just saying I hope they are reasonable with their decisions.

 

 Sometimes having fewer abilities to choose from creates a more tactical decision on the players part. I actually enjoyed the combat system and PvP in Tera and Neverwinter, both had solid responsiveness and the weighted feel of each swing and hit. Not having a tab-target gave the battle more dynamic outcomes, as you needed to use more visual skills to line up your attacks or to actively dodge.

 

Regarding the flow of combat, a lot of it comes down to how many animation frames are you animating for each combat movement and how does that flow and blend into the next one.  

 

 There are some great animation tools out there that can really help blend and tighten the animations, but it also takes a very skilled eye and the animators need a solid feel for how each movement should look and "feel", even if that means they get up and move around like the character would in big exaggerated movements and play it back on video. It makes for great fun but also can really help dial in the "weightiness" of both character and weapons in use, if that makes sense.  ^_^

 

 You can have this equally well in both tab-target system and an open target system that they plan to use.

Edited by Palad1n

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I like skill oriented combat.  Things like ESO, Neverwinter, Vindictus, Wildstar, Everquest Next, Guild Wars 2, etc.  I used to like tab targeting or mouse clicking back in the DAoC and UO days, but ever since Neverwinter and ESO, I just really like hacking and slashing things.  Clicking something or tabbing around and looking for a target indicator just doesn't do it for me anymore.

 

The only thing I hope they do NOT do, is make us hold down the damn right mouse button the whole time we play to do it (like Guild Wars 2 does).

 

I have been having a think about this all day today and I have started to come around to "skill" combat. Furthermore I'm going to start a discussion here based on some of the ideas I've had. I think I have some up with a number of compromises to balance things out, without further ado

 

 

SKILL COMBAT REVISITED

NOTE: We are going to have to look at skilled combat different for the rule sets specific to each class.

 

Mages: Much of their attacks can easily be "explode on target", a small penalty could be a small cast time. DoTs can also have this effect. Like the archers, we can still have 0 cast time moves that follow a path. I believe we can solve this problem 2 ways:

 

1. We strafe around the tank, getting our shots in from the side! However, we should also be able to

2. Using a Tactical Skill button, we can select a skill that works in 2 ways. First it highlights on the floor where we want the projectile to end up, secondly it auto calculates a path using this algorithm (If a friendly is in the way, arc the shot so it lands on the target). As the project still has to travel to it's target this allows for the realism of the target to move out of range and even for our friendly target to get in the way and be hit!

 

We can now move our archer, skillfully, to avoid incoming attacks, whilst using the mentioned tactical skill to avoid hitting friends. Having these tactical skills does not have to involve rooting the character in order to use this intelligent aiming skill.

 

You do something cool like: Press Tactical Skills button, the camera pans moves up giving you a top down view of the battle, if you hold right click you can use WASD to move and dodge stuff, when ready you can punch a number button to select the type of tactical skill you want to use, the graphic display comes up, you line up your shot (you pay a small FOCUS penalty while you line up your target 2 seconds maybe) and the camera goes back into a more close range position allowing you to move freely. The ranger can easily visualise what is directly in front of him, so this subtle camera movement really puts you in the rangers shoes.    

 

 

By giving the players such powers they are still required to make strategic decisions without going overboard, for example literally having to aim arrows into the sky and predicting wind and trajectory for themselves. I don't know if you guys were thinking about making it this way but the biggest problem I see with this is: As archers hold the left click button to charge up how much power they are going to put into the arrow and shoot it in an arc at their enemy they lose having the feel for a pro archer who can realistically shoot arrows much faster. Allow me to clarify...when shooting in a straight line, a skilled archer will easily be able to fire arrows as fast as a player can click at full power, with the power charging up too fast, aiming in an arc becomes impossible, and of course when aiming in a line waiting for the power bar to fill up takes too long adding a clear disadvantage to the archers. This can be solved simply by giving the archer 2 modes of attack, a slowed focused aimed one that works perfectly for arcing and a full power speedy one that works for straight lines.

 

HOWEVER, the compromise of tactical skills works faster allowing for more tactical gameplay in the bigger picture. What do you guys think? I am hoping you agree and can offer more ideas in the way of the tactical skills system.

 

 

So far the word has been compromise, however the sooner the devs can show us something the faster we can react to it. So far I have been imagining a compromise of Tera system with elements of Aion and some of my own completely unique ideas. I mention Tera because devs seem to be going in that sort of direction and I think there were a lot of holes in that system, Aion because it was great and each class had just the right amount of abilities.

 

I hope people don't like the idea of memorising the class skills as I would much prefer the subtle use of markers to hint at the area of the attack and such, I simply think this is a good design idea.

 

PROBLEM: Imagine, tank in front of target, assassin behind it, ranged/mages further away, the champion somewhere at the side, if he swings without tactical skills I think his skill set will alienate him, even fighting from the side swings of his big weapon are going to easily hit the tank and the assassin, but choosing overhead linear instead of horizontal attacks he can alter some/most of his skills to become part of the solution once again. How do you guys see this?

 

 

Ok, well I think I have given you enough to talk about until we see some in game content. ENJOY!

 

 

 

Some Fun

Now that's all out the way, how awesome are the new reveals, I was shocked at the Ranger, here I was thinking I'm going to play a Stalker and the Ranger is mentioned. I just cannot resist playing Ranger! If you've looked at https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=crowfall&es_sm=122&tbm=isch&imgil=jfrdCBwNcrg_RM%253A%253BbCkVkvE8jGwF6M%253Bhttp%25253A%25252F%25252Fcommunity.crowfall.com%25252Findex.php%25253F%25252Ftopic%25252F641-011315-character-creation-preview%25252F&source=iu&pf=m&fir=jfrdCBwNcrg_RM%253A%252CbCkVkvE8jGwF6M%252C_&usg=__QpbkfiWKEaoxQykL7V4OvkLmRXE%3D&biw=1920&bih=965&ved=0CDoQyjc&ei=N5_sVJzCLsqd7Abr-4EY#imgdii=_&imgrc=jfrdCBwNcrg_RM%253A%3BbCkVkvE8jGwF6M%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fmedia.crowfall.com%252FCrowfall_CharacterCreate_preview.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fcommunity.crowfall.com%252Findex.php%253F%252Ftopic%252F641-011315-character-creation-preview%252F%3B1920%3B1080 you can see that there are still more characters to be released XD, double infact oo, 24 classes total nice!

Edited by trugamer

-Truthe Yashikawa

The Lantern Watch - A Crowfall-first guild.  Welcome Home.

http://crowfall.shivtr.com/

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 Sometimes having fewer abilities to choose from creates a more tactical decision on the players part. I actually enjoyed the combat system and PvP in Tera and Neverwinter, both had solid responsiveness and the weighted feel of each swing and hit. Not having a tab-target gave the battle more dynamic outcomes, as you needed to use more visual skills to line up your attacks or to actively dodge.

 

Regarding the flow of combat, a lot of it comes down to how many animation frames are you animating for each combat movement and how does that flow and blend into the next one.  

 

 There are some great animation tools out there that can really help blend and tighten the animations, but it also takes a very skilled eye and the animators need a solid feel for how each movement should look and "feel", even if that means they get up and move around like the character would in big exaggerated movements and play it back on video. It makes for great fun but also can really help dial in the "weightiness" of both character and weapons in use, if that makes sense.  ^_^

 

 You can have this equally well in both tab-target system and an open target system that they plan to use.

 

First I'd just like to say I've watched the kickstarter video https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/crowfall/crowfall-throne-war-pc-mmo and the gameplay looks just how I imagined it. I have not quite yet figured out how the battle system is going to pan out, however...first I'd like to invite you to read my new post, it's all for the skill system, I've retalked about compromise and the tactical skills system as I find them quite important. I mean if you're going to do something new in a game that's looking great already, why not take it to the next level. From what I've seen I think the tactical skills system will open a door into evolving a very polished looking game into a next level because it adds an RTS element with aspects of micro-management.

 

In terms of having fewer skills, or limiting the player by have 3 separate talent trees instead of a big one, I simply disagree. From my perspective it just seems way more fun, way more diverse in terms of both gameplay and role play, I'm really big into getting into my role so for me less skills is just bad.

 

 

Oh, you might want to check out Skyforge, this game has an action system too, it's pretty good even though you only have a few skills!

Edited by trugamer

-Truthe Yashikawa

The Lantern Watch - A Crowfall-first guild.  Welcome Home.

http://crowfall.shivtr.com/

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Just watched the kickstarter video https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/crowfall/crowfall-throne-war-pc-mmo there are graphical hints showing your attacks general damage area, I think this is really good, it means more information on the screen, but graphically it doesn't ruin anything and tactically it helps allowing you to have that confidence that you are not going to knock one of your friends. I've done some reading too!

 

- Classes have skill trees if you will and so people will be choosing a particular path for their character instead of being able to max them out. This is not a game breaker for me, but I believe it hurts the game overall as you will inevitably get leet builds. I am going to try to talk to developers about this! To be honest this is a choice most games make...I feel it to be a bad one!

 

- The rest of the game seems decent. To be honest I'm excited to see how battling works!


-Truthe Yashikawa

The Lantern Watch - A Crowfall-first guild.  Welcome Home.

http://crowfall.shivtr.com/

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Here's a discussion I've started http://Here's a discussion I've started https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mebfSou47V0&feature=youtu.be please watch this video and get debating! please watch the video its very short and I think it covers an important issue for Crowfall to address and I would really appreciate it if we could get the Devs involved in this too! I have started another post because I think this section of gameplay really needs to be focused on by the community and will be doing so with other issues as well just to get things neatly represented on the forum.


-Truthe Yashikawa

The Lantern Watch - A Crowfall-first guild.  Welcome Home.

http://crowfall.shivtr.com/

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I'm very curious to see how they will do this, because I really did not enjoy GW2 and games like Tera and Neverwinter often limit the number of skills you can have to 5-6. I'm not saying it can't work I'm just saying I hope they are reasonable with their decisions.

Well I think the later half of the suggestion linked solves your problem, having the ability to aim but not having to pin point your targets and gaining some tracking benefit from the system allows everything to be resolved. Skills can be free aimed, or use prediction to help you hit targets while requiring you to input a fair amount of aiming without being a shooting expert, I'd watch the videos provided at the bottom of the suggestion, than I can describe how it can be adjusted for Crowfall.


a52d4a0d-044f-44ff-8a10-ccc31bfa2d87.jpg          Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes... Than if they're upset, they'll be a mile away, and barefoot :P

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Removing targeting removes the "focus fire" mentality.  It doesn't feel "fun" on the receiving end of being focus fired by multiple people.  Sure, it's a great tactic, but it's more fun to last a bit longer in combat and design tactics around this mechanic.  Since there isn't the ability to focus fire, it removes the need for a pure healer.

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Focus fire can still happen without tab targeting, I think the main thing that will fight focus fire is working shields. If a defensive player can hide under a shield than they can eliminate a great deal of projectile fire and make it really effective to nullify focused aggression. Because of collision, only a few melee fighters can reach you at a time, and if you form up a line or block of allies, they can barely reach you from one or two directions.

 

The solutions are there, they just need to be taken...


a52d4a0d-044f-44ff-8a10-ccc31bfa2d87.jpg          Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes... Than if they're upset, they'll be a mile away, and barefoot :P

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I really hope classes, weapons and armour won't be somethnig fixed and stiff. I hope, like Albion/RuneScape/UO, you can be, do and wear whatever you want, depending on your mood/role. Most MMOs have a fixed class and I'm kind of bored of that... hopefully there will be some way to innovate here as it did in other old, yet fun, games.


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The devs are going for a tactical, skill based game.

Targeting just ruins that sort of gameplay.

 

Honestly, I don't want to see homing fireballs and arrows.

If they aren't homing, then targeting just doesn't work. Especially when movement is a big deal.

 

As has been said, focus firing is also not fun in large scale pvp.

Sure, it might be fun for the team doing it, but not fun for the guy getting gibbed with no way to respond.

 

If you're going to not be able to respond, it should be because you didn't noticed that group of archers that just arrived on the hill nearby while you're fighting in melee combat against their ally, who is acting as a distraction so you'll die. If you noticed the archers, you can at least try to get the heck out, like their ally inevitably will seeing as he's probably on voice comms and knows the attack is coming based on timing.

 

Skill based fighting has a far more tactical style of gameplay to it than targeting does, and is also a lot more fluid.

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Just dont do the same mistake wildstar , ESO ,,, did and make the skill aiming become a aoe spaming party and i am not for friendly fire because, it will be just wierd to avoid ennemis and ailles attack  ( Mellee )

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