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sarcandosa

5.110 Phase 1 Professions Initial Review and Feedback

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As soon as the Test server came up, I jumped right in with a deep review of the Professions (Passive Training Skill Trees) to update my spreadsheet. Specifically, Basic Combat, Crafting Basics and Exploration to see what has changed and how it made change ones approach to the leveling progression as a primarily crafting focus individual. Here are my initial thoughts,

Combat Basics -  

Format of the spokes skill trees jumped out at me as really pushing for specialization. I love the look of it and the concept of going for just what you need out of the gate. The buy in cost of Combat Basic Training seems rather steep initially but considering the tree is focused on helping with PVP more than PVE combat, that cost will be easily attained while leveling. The progression through each line slowly builds on the initial concept of that line of the tree and builds on it. Like the changes. ExoKBCM.png

Crafting Basics –

Once again the change into the spokes skill tree is excellent. The fact that the three main craft boosting choices are the same on your way to selecting your chosen Crafting skill tree, even if they in different orders is great. No longer do you work towards a line for the Experimentation boost and then break off to work towards a different craft. Plus once you work towards multiple crafts, you double up on those stats.  Nicely done. Uom9vtw.png

Exploration –

Here is where things started to fall off the bus for me and prompted me to write this feedback. In exploration the streamlining of specialization has gone haywire in my opinion. Skills that branch from other skills don’t make sense. Other skills are hidden behind skills that most would not take if they weren't necessary, as they are outside their area of focus. So let me dig in and explain what I am seeing and what I am feeling.fuwPR95.png

Gathering Line (Going up) – This line starts off as a Ore and Stone Focused line, giving a boost to Picks and Hammers. Then right behind it, you have Knotwood, which is confusing since the Axe boosting is in the Survival Line. We carry on through the line, everything is fine, we still pick and hammer focused skills. It does feel like it should have split into two lines to encourage a focus on one or the other, but I digress. The next confusing item it Beeswax branching off from Slag. Completely unrelated skills that do not build on each other or encourage specialization.

Recommend moving Knotwood and Beeswax to Survival or a Wood Chopping specialized like. I understand that it is probably expected at some point everyone will have the entire Exploration tree completed to get the Exploration Mastery, but early and mid game shouldn’t be about completionism, but about specialization and teamwork. Speaking of the Exploration Mastery, why Apples here? Energetic Harvesting should be a Mastery of Wood Cutters only.

Movement Line (Going right) – The main thing that didn’t feel right is this line was having those that specialize in personal movement stats had to also take mounted movement skills. Seems like generic skills like Enhanced Sprint should be first, then split into 2 lines, one that bolsters the Mounted, Caravan items, the other for the Movement Offense and Defense. See the modified image.

Survival Line (Going left) – Starts out suggesting it about being Tree focused. Then once again it gets confusing by having Harvest Bone, then Consumption. The first about skinning which does not anywhere in the Skill Tree have a decreased decay for Skinning Knives. The second about eating, which everyone will want, but may not want to chop trees or skin to get to the eat drink abilities. The whole line seems all over the map ending with a Mastery that gives a Survivalist Campfire when the Exploration Mastery also gives a Campfire. Recommend this line gets split into two separate lines, one about Food and drink with another about trees and animals. If we ever get a specialization for picking plants (using a Sickle) for greater harvests, then a Tree and Plant line would be a great combination, related skills together. Then a Skinning (Butchery) and Eating Buff Line, both food related.  Would still need twin paths, so one could specialize in one or the other.

For an example, say I want to specialize as a skinner, bring back meat, hide, bones and blood to the clan. No other quality tools needed, no skill points spent to boost my vessel outside my chosen profession. Implement mini masteries for each specialization that leads to the deeper skill trees that support your profession. Leaving the 100% completion of a Skill Tree to come back to later. This would support the already encouraged point spending in the tree to fast track your path of choice by allowing only 4 out of 5 PIPs purchased to buy the next level.

That sums up my initial feeling on reviewing the trees. In summary, love the approach to specialization, consolidation of like-minded abilities. The standardization of the ability point names and symbols. But feeling jaded with the perceived mess of the Exploration Skill Tree. Below list my stab at how it would make sense in my head focusing on specialization and getting people to the next tier of trees past exploration.

New Gathering Line – Gathering, Cobblestone, Slag, Plethera of Dust, Hunger Shards, Soulgem, Proficiency

New Wood Line – Apples (Harvest Chance: Apples, remove from Exploration basics) Survival, Foraging, Knotwood, Beeswax, Survival Proficiency (Changed to Harvest Chance: Apples that is removed from Exploration Mastery)

New Provider Line – Provider (New Skill, Decay Reduction: Knives), Harvest Skin, Harvest Bone, Harvest Blood, Provider Proficiency (Currently labeled Survival Proficiency)

New Vessel Line – Basic Cooking, Improved Consumption, Improved Ingestion, Improved Metabolism, Vessel Proficiency (Well Fed: Ability to have a food and drink buff active at same time)

Personal Movement Line – Enhanced Sprint, Improved Dodge, Split to Stealth Movement Speed and Pathfinding (Most won’t need both), come back together to continue, Enhanced Defense: Slow, Movement Speed Damage Bonus

Assisted Movement Line – Movement, Herding, Enhanced Defense: Slow for animals, Weight Reducing Movement Speed Bonus (Reducing Impact of Vehicle weight on animals), Movement Proficiency

Thanks for taking the time to read my input. Please note that I am not criticizing in any way, just providing an explanation my thoughts when presented with new information. Games succeed of fail on the initial impressions in many cases. This is by no means a fail, just a simple observation. I hope you find it useful to get a different perspective. I applaud the improvements so far, keep up the great work. I will digger into the deeper skill trees as time permits.

Your humble tester,

Chief Sarcan

 

 


Plan for tomorrow, Strive for today, Can't let anxiety get in our way, so play play play!
 
zjsbjmn.png  The MMO Chief

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10 hours ago, sarcandosa said:

For an example, say I want to specialize as a skinner, bring back meat, hide, bones and blood to the clan. No other quality tools needed, no skill points spent to boost my vessel outside my chosen profession.

As a skinner (and person with a slight OCD) I can not explain how peeved I was having to take things like Apple harverst Chance (or something like that) before getting skinning boons in 5.10. Same also happened with talent points where I had to waste points in trees just to unlock a disk. Yes, I am getting something from it, but being forced to take it really sours any possible gain.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, srathor said:

6 hours a pip for the first node. <sigh>

 

Recently talked about. later on the Q&A they talk about this being the first "test" of the "Expected" training speeds.  So if you think 1X  is not fast enough, speak up.

 

An not just a gripe, maybe suggest what you think is the right speed.

https://youtu.be/uH9v7JPliwg?t=1534

 

Edited by KrakkenSmacken

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51 minutes ago, KrakkenSmacken said:

Recently talked about. later on the Q&A they talk about this being the first "test" of the "Expected" training speeds.  So if you think 1X  is not fast enough, speak up.

 

An not just a gripe, maybe suggest what you think is the right speed.

https://youtu.be/uH9v7JPliwg?t=1534

 

Let's take a look at the numbers just for the Exploration Tree – 23 Nodes, Assume 6840 Per PIP cost of all of them, 34200 points per node, to 100% the tree that is, 786,600 points at 1 Point per 10 seconds, 6 Points per Minute, 360 Points per hour, that comes to 2185 Hours or 91 Days to complete it.

To Move to the next tier of Specialization, Excavation requires 5 PIPs in Gathering Proficiency, which is 9 nodes with at least 4 PIPs each, and the 5 PIP in the last node. That is 6840 + (6840 x 4 x 9) = 253080 Points. 42180 Minutes, 703 Hours, 29 Days to be able to even unlock Excavation.

Then you have to proceed that that skill tree to unlock either Ore, Stone or Grave Specialization. I can’t say whether the Per Point cost is to low, it depends on the goal of the game with regard to having specialized harvesters, specialized crafters and specialized combat people. With the time it requires in Months to 100% your chosen specialty and the length of time campaigns will last, how many campaigns it will take to have truly qualified teams going head to head? If we can get some guidance on the goals with regard to time, we could provide better input as to whether it is to slow and by how much.

With what is given thus far, it does seem to low. It assumes you that the game will hook people and keep them around for many months. However it more likely they will log in start training, get to level cap and then go play something else until the passive training has enough points to make them feel specialized enough to be productive. Unless there is something in place that stops the passive training if you haven't logged in and played x amount of time with x amount of time, this means you could have people missing for months, especially with the point investment cost for the Combat trees. Just food for thought. I like the idea of the active and passive training, but they need to be balanced with regard to feeling satisfying when you hit certain tiers. A potential solution would be to increase the amount of passives received while actively playing and keep the earn rate while offline the same. This runs into the issue of those that have more playtime can outdistance those that can't play as often, which is not a good solution either. Don't really know what a good solution would be, but that why we here, to discuss it in civil dialog. 


Plan for tomorrow, Strive for today, Can't let anxiety get in our way, so play play play!
 
zjsbjmn.png  The MMO Chief

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Posted (edited)

This is what I feared the most, really long early game training speeds are going to kill this game. Nobody wants to play a game where bits of progression needed for getting to the next portion of the game take a month or more to get to, assuming you optimise your nodes. As is, it actually discourages people from playing early as these skills you need for crafting or gathering will halt your progress for a pre-determined amount of time with you being unable to do anything to speed it up. This is fine for late game retention rewards, but not for early game content like unlocking critical recipes, mounts or important harverstables. It shouldn't really take any more than a couple of hours top to get the critical nodes. You should be able to get the most important unlocks within a few days. Ideally, I think it's the end game purely stat bonus nodes that should take long. Reward players for sticking through while also not punishing active play. All that said, I still think replacing passive progression with some form of activity based system with a passive option would be better. 

Edited by Zastier

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, sarcandosa said:

 

To Move to the next tier of Specialization, Excavation requires 5 PIPs in Gathering Proficiency, which is 9 nodes with at least 4 PIPs each, and the 5 PIP in the last node. That is 6840 + (6840 x 4 x 9) = 253080 Points. 42180 Minutes, 703 Hours, 29 Days to be able to even unlock Excavation.

 

so 29 days until we get the possiblity of even thinking about crafting vessels.(shovels are in excavation)

Edited by pamintandrei

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37 minutes ago, pamintandrei said:

so 29 days until we get the possiblity of even thinking about crafting vessels.(shovels are in excavation)

maybe (and it's a big maybe) this will feel different when embedded into the first month rush to put all resources into guild cities. but probably, it will still feel bad.


Mic MWH, Member of Mithril Warhammers since 2003,


Hammers High! http://www.mithrilwarhammers.com

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Posted (edited)

Seems liek the 3 lines in exploration is Crafting resources (General crafting things, Food Resource (Things from animals/food drops) and Travel. i have to agree with ya it feels clunky in it sorting method since the crafting and food lines have muiltipul harvesting types to get those resources and should be sorted more in the methods to get those resources than the catagory of them.

So top line would be you Ore/Rock node drops (So pick and hammer) and both left would be Wood and Skinning Drops (Axe/knife)  would work better

I feel its is definelty too slow in the skill gaining aswell especially in the early lines. Cant say bout anything past basic lines. I feel there should be 3 tiers to the passive tree for all types (I dont think crafting has 3 tiers atm rest do though im pretty sure) time to level aka the minimum you need to move onto next tree tier should be around this
Tier 1- 1 week
Tier 2 - 3 weeks (Doesnt include the 1 week to unlock)
Tier 3 - 9 weeks (To get to end skill in a line) (Doesnt include the previous times)
These lines are just to complete one wing of the 3 paths you can take

Crafting tree if they dont (Cant log in atm to check and didnt look after the basic lines) should go crafting basic, Blacksmithing, Advance blacksmithing for example

You definelty need to move through the Basic tree much faster it feel like you cant do anything at all until you get to the tier 2 part.

Edited by veeshan

Veeshan Midst of UXA

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The basics of the game should come at a time when you start thinking now what. At the beginning it needs to be fairly fast. Minutes and hours. Then hours and 3-4 hour increments. then days. Then weeks. Then the next break point comes at 2-3 weeks. Then a big break point at a month. People quit on the milestones when they take time to say am I having fun. Then three months and 6 months. then 9 and a year. Anything longer than 90 days quickly loses focus with the younger crowd, and most of them have an attention span of 90 minutes.

Having a 36 hour gap from start to get a mount is trivial to a developer. They can just get the skill for free. For a player, it is 36 hours that they are now behind other people who are getting other things. No matter if it is realistic or not, it breeds resentment in many players minds.  They want to be doing the cool things, the things all the other people in discord are doing. Not waiting 36 hours. (Even though everyone is waiting that 36 hours) But once it is done. And you have the mount, the resentment will remain. Even after the new mount speed is worn off of a fun idea and becomes the base speed we should have had... (Stupid 36 hour wait.)

You have to have a mount to keep up with the joneses. It is a requirement, in a pvp game. Gated the way it is, is simply a source of frustration.

 

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1 hour ago, yianni said:

For crafters this is really bad . For combat it's not so bad because I'm okay fighting in tribe gear and not having the combat passives 

I've thought for awhile that we'd fight in dropped gear for a month...   crafted blue for another month or three, purps in 4-5?  Not going to happen past that considering Beta to soft launch shouldn't be more than 6 months.


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                                                        Sugoi - Senpai

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9 hours ago, Frykka said:

I've thought for awhile that we'd fight in dropped gear for a month...   crafted blue for another month or three, purps in 4-5?  Not going to happen past that considering Beta to soft launch shouldn't be more than 6 months.

 That's still a long time what are crafters going to do? Start the passives training and come back in six months? 

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2 hours ago, yianni said:

 That's still a long time what are crafters going to do? Start the passives training and come back in six months? 

You are just asking that question now? This was brought up ages ago and ignored. like so many flaws that we attempted to address. 

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i think we can all agree the beginning is pretty harsh, now that's kinda biased against those of us that have been waiting to test. But I'm suspecting telling new ppl they have to wait 1.5 full 'real life' days to even equip a mount will leave a bad impression on new players. At that point you might as well put in the talent tree as a level gate, I assume dev thinking is to limit a new characters mobility until they level up some to avoid a bad impression of fighting higher level mobs.

Anyway I don't think the solution is just 10x the speed, but -10x the required points on the basics line, most people get frustrated getting stuck on the basics of anything. Even if those extra points are distributed to the 'tier 2' nodes.

But really its still an issue of seeing 1 part of the whole game, I am excited to check out how the war game goes now. Maybe we'll all be distracted running caravans to notice how much slower the passive training is.

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I see the current issue, and well it is really the same one. All the current race/class combo's are combat based, which is awesome for a pure PvP game. With the want to make gathering and crafting a major part with in the game and truly have more of a survival feel, ALL races should have a gatherer and crafting classes that focus on class skills to complement the Profession skills just like what they currently do for combat. As is you can go out the front gate and your good to start fighting, and will gain the skills to fight even better bigger critters along the way. With combat you don't need to wait to get right into it. Now with gathering & crafting classes with class skills to help off set waiting for Profession skills to start kicking in Gatherers and Crafters alike can feel useful right out the door and by the end of the first week can have useful materials  & items to help their warrior brethren. 

Just my 2 cents on the matter. Any thoughts there?

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Posted (edited)

Not that I disagree with any of the above, in fact I agree with most of it, but lets take the next step and talk about catch up mechanics and the previously proposed Tome System, and the entire purpose of the passive system, and see if the core problems above can be addressed simply, without a whole pile of new systems.

I think what might be a really interesting/good way to deal with it, is to simply preload points into every basic tree when the account is first created. New players get a starting value of points to select, getting a sense of progression and immediate choice, while still addressing the core issue passive was supposed to solve in the first place.

I could see it going a few ways with this solution.

  1. Players get for example three weeks of points or more (180,000 ) on a primary line they pick, or each line of two they first start training. 
  2. Players gets no choice and a set amount of points on each line.
  3. ACE makes a tome system and gives each starting players basic tome of the value of above. That however could be gamed with multiple accounts feeding another account to "basic" cap basically instantly. 

1 or 2 would probably be the least amount of work. That could simply address at least the whole starting out problem.

 

Edited by KrakkenSmacken

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