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Why Ttk And The Zerg Are Inextricably Linked


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I personally favor low time-to-kill if players are allowed enough reaction to the situation. I also advocate the capability to one shot a target if there's a requirement of set up (ex. mass debuffing the target) especially in a scenario where the debuffs need to be applied by a manual aim. However I am not in favor of skills that plain outright oneshot without any requirement of a set up. 

 

To me, high TTK games allow too many mistakes to be made in a single fight. It's just a personal opinion, but to me if attacks are avoidable by the player, high TTK allows individuals to screw up too many times prior to their death. However there are so many factors included (ex. 100% accurate hard CC's that allow to be cast, and killing the opponent without any chance of possible retaliation from them, yours truly Archeage) it needs to be evaluated on game on game basis.

 

P.S my definition of low TTK refers to a fight lasting from 20 seconds to few minutes.

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So I've contributed to many conversations here about Time to Kill. A lot of folks think it should be longer than real life because it isn't "fun" to be randomly one-shotted on occasion. I'm of the opi

JamesGoblin is liking my posts. Does that mean I'm destined to have my own podcast?

Fighting the zerg by making TTK low will totally work. I lot of people won't play.   This is literally the worst antizerg suggestion posted so far. Wreck all of the game's combat from tiny skirmishs

I personally favor low time-to-kill if players are allowed enough reaction to the situation. I also advocate the capability to one shot a target if there's a requirement of set up (ex. mass debuffing the target) especially in a scenario where the debuffs need to be applied by a manual aim. However I am not in favor of skills that plain outright oneshot without any requirement of a set up. 

 

To me, high TTK games allow too many mistakes to be made in a single fight. It's just a personal opinion, but to me if attacks are avoidable by the player, high TTK allows individuals to screw up too many times prior to their death. However there are so many factors included (ex. 100% accurate hard CC's that allow to be cast, and killing the opponent without any chance of possible retaliation from them, yours truly Archeage) it needs to be evaluated on game on game basis.

 

P.S my definition of low TTK refers to a fight lasting from 20 seconds to few minutes.

Dave Georgeson was talking about TTK and it seemed like somewhere around 20-40 seconds was best. 

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P.S my definition of low TTK refers to a fight lasting from 20 seconds to few minutes.

 

Heh, I'd call that long. Personally that sounds fine.

 

No heal spam means people get closer to dieing gradually as they make mistakes. Which means the stupid CC and focus fire combos that gib someone can be removed from the game.

David Sirlin's Balancing Multiplayer Games should be mandatory reading for all gamers.

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the fundamental flaw in your argument is that you bring in "real life". war in real life sucks. there's a reason man created chess. war isn't fair or balanced. playing a game like reality would mean if you're on Team Saddam, you get to have lvl 1 torn linen robes, and a broken wand. while your opponents wear epics and wield Thunderfury.

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the fundamental flaw in your argument is that you bring in "real life". war in real life sucks. there's a reason man created chess. war isn't fair or balanced. playing a game like reality would mean if you're on Team Saddam, you get to have lvl 1 torn linen robes, and a broken wand. while your opponents wear epics and wield Thunderfury.

You think a well theory crafted spec group vs. randoms who have spent no time thinking about their character will be "fair or balanced"? No, it won't be, and it has been stated they are not attempting to flat out the game by "balancing" it too heavily.

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You think a well theory crafted spec group vs. randoms who have spent no time thinking about their character will be "fair or balanced"? No, it won't be, and it has been stated they are not attempting to flat out the game by "balancing" it too heavily.

so therefore "real life" is a good point of reference for a game? I think not. besides, having a lopsided game is in direct conflict with their vision (uncle bob dominating), and they have mentioned many times how they are planning to implement diminishing returns for power both in gear and skill

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Short TTKs do not seem enjoyable to me. If anything they wind up encouraging you to group up in a massive zerg. Less chance of getting picked out when you are part of a horde.

 

I would rather zergs be balanced through other means. Not ones that will harm me in all aspects of the games combat. That is silly. Collision, friendly fire, and other approaches would be preferable to me by a large margin.

I'm not an idiot, I simply choose not to think.

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I'm with you on your definitions Lastboy, I get what you're saying. But you can't account for random environmental factors in the game without a little RNG. Sounds like that game you played had way to high a rate of failure and needed to adjust down.

 

Sure, players will goof up on their own. That's good. That's real. But without a bit of RNG, you can't account for things like that freak gust of wind (that might save your life as much as take it). That patch of mud that your foot slipped on (either causing you to get impaled or possible causing you to fall under a mortal swing).

 

Those are the kinds of things that need a teeny bit of RNG to recreate. Otherwise, the spice is gone.

 

You do have a point about RNG. I mean, there's good and bad things about RNG. It's very bad for active participant play. It's great for passive elements and it does shift things around to an extent. Enviromental factors is an interesting idea. Mud to slow down people in a large area that's been heavily bombarded by the gears of war and forms after rain. I'm not really sure about adding RNG into an enviroment because that also presents as degree of unpredictablity. You're walking around and you suddenly slip for no visual reason? I would like to put enviromental factors under just probability alone. You're entrenched in mud and fighting? More likely to get slowed and slip up, and that's because you chose to fight in mud. You get pushed off a bridge or a mountain by a knockback? You chose to fight/go there. Stuff like that.

 

I've just been burnt too many times when it comes to RNG so I'm SO iffy when it comes to balancing that with passives like criticals, because what will prevent people from stacking it all into critical chance so they can just eviscerate you...and I realize that the only way to do that is to put in greater diminishing returns and having to add in weaknesses and strengths so Crowfall...fingers crossed. That's the only positive element of RNG I can see if it's done exactly right, especially for an action paced PVP game.

 

As for the Ttk, 20-40 second does sound reasonable, especially in a frenetic action oriented PVP. Too long and it does feel dragged out. In a longer post, (which I'm really sorry for) I suggested that when players get to a certan threshold of health, like 25%-10% maybe to do a one shot, long cd skill-shot(manually aimed) execution based skill that could be avoidable to prevent insta-locking and insta-gibbing. Thoughts on that?

Edited by Lastboy

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You think a well theory crafted spec group vs. randoms who have spent no time thinking about their character will be "fair or balanced"? 

 

Of course it is balanced. You work harder building your team spec, you get rewarded. It would be unbalanced if the team that worked harder didn't have an advantage.

 

 

On the main topic, I partly agree and partly disagree. One concern I have is small group PvP. In a siege it's all fine and good to have some massive attacks that blow away characters in an area all at once, but the nature of the game and the abstraction of "hit points" translates that into a small group PvP game where certain tactics are a little too effective.

 

For example, if normal time to kill in a 1 vs 1 fight is 5 seconds, then 2 stealthers can kill a single foe in ~2.5 seconds. Even less if the burst damage coming out of stealth is higher than the usual after damage, which it probably will be based on usual stealth class designs. Being killed essentially instantly from only a couple of enemies with no chance to retaliate or even see them before attack is annoying, to say the least.

 

Reading the OP, part me thinks that the problem in other PvP MMO situations is largely caused by the "fire-hose" healers, not the actual time to kill. Without the healing, death is inevitable, even if it takes 20, 30 or 40 seconds, or even several minutes. We aren't really sure of the healing situation- there might be fairly common healing potions, and self heal abilities might not be too rare- but what if they are? In a game with no fast healing, even if you aren't killed being knocked down to 60% hp is a big liability. If most characters can't heal at all during a combat 'siege' situation, maybe just taking area damage will work out okay, it doesn't need to be one hit to kill if they can't heal between the hits.

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...In real life, fortifications can trump the Zerg. Well fortified forces often need sieging and starving out (the real meaning of siege, not the SB one). Having more numbers isn't necessarily going to beat a well prepared, well defended fortification. Why is that?

...

 

If we went back into the past with our knowledge of warfare today, those fortifications would fall within hours... not days.  A competent lead and focused zerg will trump any fortification, unless you have a zerg on defense as well.  Your example is absolutely horrible when talking about TTK.  A zerg will ALWAYS have an insanely smaller TTK than a non-zerg.... and there is no game mechanic that will stop that.  Increasing TTK will only hurt non-zergs.... and require a zerg to get anywhere in PvP.  Adding RNG to combat is equally as horrible.

> Suddenly, a Nyt appears in the discussion...

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 A zerg will ALWAYS have an insanely smaller TTK than a non-zerg.... and there is no game mechanic that will stop that. 

 

Yeah there is. It's called collision and no-lock ons. That certainly doesn't stop you from getting overrun, but the notion that you'll die faster to 20 than to 5 is actually not likely in a collision-and-hitbox system.

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If we went back into the past with our knowledge of warfare today, those fortifications would fall within hours... not days.

 

Like, how so?  I'm not sure I agree with your characterization that ancient war leaders were so incompetent.

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Yeah there is. It's called collision and no-lock ons. That certainly doesn't stop you from getting overrun, but the notion that you'll die faster to 20 than to 5 is actually not likely in a collision-and-hitbox system.

 

You're delusional if you think collision and no-lock ons will prevent a zerg from dropping a fort wall down.  Most players consider a 20+ player group a "zerg" and if organized and trained well, they will have the skill to effectively PvP as a "zerg" unit.  Now, of couse, the collision and TK applied to pug or non-organized zergs will take it's toll.  But, CF will have some of the best PvP players and organized guilds you will see in MMOs.  You won't be able to hide behind fortifications and TTK will be felt strongly.

> Suddenly, a Nyt appears in the discussion...

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Like, how so?  I'm not sure I agree with your characterization that ancient war leaders were so incompetent.

 

Because most were trained to fight in organized formations and slowly dug trenches in order to bring their siege weapons into range of the fort walls.  They didn't quickly "zerg" a specific wall with siege weapons protected by ranged picking off the enemy from the walls.  They didn't keep moving around to dodge incoming fire, as it would move them out of formation.  American farmers were able to counter "British Zergs" because they didn't stick to formations and valued cover.  There are quite a few differences in strategy learned over the decades.

 

Add to the fact that we're playing a game where we can respawn (no perma-death like in RL), it nearly nullifies any RL comparison to digital warfare.

 

I agree with the OP, in some respect, but I don't think we need damage multipliers applied to AOEs.  That makes no sense.  It's not like a clustered zerg will currently take less damage because AOEs are spread.... every player will take damage.  Traditionally, those closest to the center will take the most damage with diminishing damage to the outter ring.  

 

Still, you will see guilds have a fortification wall destruction force backed by a fort infiltration force.  CF will definitely show which guilds are highly strategic and trained compared to those that ... well... just exist as a guild.

> Suddenly, a Nyt appears in the discussion...

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Something to think about is we don't have any fire hose healers. So people's effective HP is way less than most MMOs already. One shots aren't necessary in a game without healers.

Edited by vunak
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Because most were trained to fight in organized formations and slowly dug trenches in order to bring their siege weapons into range of the fort walls.  They didn't quickly "zerg" a specific wall with siege weapons protected by ranged picking off the enemy from the walls.  They didn't keep moving around to dodge incoming fire, as it would move them out of formation.  American farmers were able to counter "British Zergs" because they didn't stick to formations and valued cover.  There are quite a few differences in strategy learned over the decades.

 

Add to the fact that we're playing a game where we can respawn (no perma-death like in RL), it nearly nullifies any RL comparison to digital warfare.

 

I agree with the OP, in some respect, but I don't think we need damage multipliers applied to AOEs.  That makes no sense.  It's not like a clustered zerg will currently take less damage because AOEs are spread.... every player will take damage.  Traditionally, those closest to the center will take the most damage with diminishing damage to the outter ring.  

 

Still, you will see guilds have a fortification wall destruction force backed by a fort infiltration force.  CF will definitely show which guilds are highly strategic and trained compared to those that ... well... just exist as a guild.

 

Okay.  You aren't really making an apples to apples comparison. You are comparing real-world "ancient" tactics w/ limited troops to "modern" tactics which are based around infinitely re-spawning troops.

 

I'm not sure those assumptions will prove to be true. Some campaigns may have "permadeath", in that if you die you are kicked out. Some may have full equipment drop on death, which makes re-spawning and running back into the battle a losing proposition. Even those that don't make you drop equipment on death might have a long-duration death-shroud effect, so that if you return to battle before letting it wear off you will be fighting at 1/3 your normal capability.

 

A good fortification in Crowfall should offer tremendous advantages to the defender, and could certainly hold off an attack for days if the mechanics are designed properly.

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A good fortification in Crowfall should offer tremendous advantages to the defender, and could certainly hold off an attack for days if the mechanics are designed properly.

 

I agree, and it should.  But, it also needs to be backed by strong defensive force as well.  An undefended or very minimal defensive player force in the fortification should also render such fortification easily dominated by a strong offensive force.  Meaning, you can't expect to have a fortification alone able to withstand a focused "zerg" attack.

 

That said, the suggestions in increasing TTK, adding RNG, and adding multipliers to players clustered together are unnecessary suggestions.

> Suddenly, a Nyt appears in the discussion...

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You're delusional if you think collision and no-lock ons will prevent a zerg from dropping a fort wall down.  Most players consider a 20+ player group a "zerg" and if organized and trained well, they will have the skill to effectively PvP as a "zerg" unit.  Now, of couse, the collision and TK applied to pug or non-organized zergs will take it's toll.  But, CF will have some of the best PvP players and organized guilds you will see in MMOs.  You won't be able to hide behind fortifications and TTK will be felt strongly.

 

This has nothing to do with what I said. Large forces will DEFINITELY have an edge in siege warfare, for very very obvious reasons. The larger your guild, too, the more resources you'll probably have to make siege tools, as well. Dropping a wall and dropping a dude are two very different things.

 

I said that a large force piling on a single guy isn't going to kill him any faster than a small group, and that's not really a debatable point. Or do you imagine that crowding dudes swinging swords willy-nilly, mages throwing whatever they throw, and bowmen shooting into the smallest openings is going to result in positive outcomes for the attacker? I guess you might kill that person slightly faster, if you were completely unconcerned about allied collateral. No, having those players be "e-leet progamers" is not going to help. There is a limit to how many people you can focus fire with, and there are even more constrained limits on how much coordination you can exert over a large force in a high-intensity situation.

 

If the argument is strategic ie. whether or not you take a fort, yes, obviously you have an edge with numbers. That's how it should be, because having it be any other way would require really contrived mechanics. But talking about TTK alone? Nah.

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