Monday, August 30, 2010

Balancing Act: The Knife

Every so often we see posts on the MAG Forums that make so much sense that we turn them into features here. Its sad that among much of the whining and complaining that many logical, well-written, thought out posts get lost in the sea of foolishness. This one was contributed by Matakage. here's what he wrote on the forums:
 You want reasons why the knife is bad for MAG? Sure, I'll bite. Everyone needs to hear the Devil's Advocate side once in a while.

1) Not practical due to the situation. You're in a battle, holding a gun in your hand with your finger on the trigger. You get within 5 feet and... pull a knife out? I think not. In real life you pull the trigger. It's much more of a sure-thing. Instant kill knives are "video game logic."

2) Damage is unbalanced compared to guns. MAG is a special universe indeed. We've got AR's that take 7-12 bullets (if not more) to kill an enemy, yet a knife is instant death (most of the time). Commence head-scratching and chin-rubbing. Now in real life imagine approaching a guy with a gun and using only one-stab or slice to kill them without getting killed first. This game mechanic in MAG is not only ridiculous and laughably backwards, it's also damaging to the game and the foundation of a first person shooter.

3) The reason behind of "instant kill knives" does not apply to MAG. Why do instant-kill knives even exist at all in video games when it has no correlation to real life? Instant-kill knives are meant to be a reward for closing the gap (often by stealth) on your enemy who should theoretically have an advantage with a ranged weapon. In MAG, the damage output of guns is so unrealistically low that an player can close an unrealistic gap and kill with a knife with relative safety. The skill "increased knifing range" worsens this even further. The ideal "Risk vs. Reward" system does not apply to MAG because the risk is too low (guns don't do enough damage) and the reward is too high (almost guaranteed instant kill). And keep in mind that practically no other weapon in the game can hit anyone on an enemy and kill them instantly. The effect is that knifing is much too safe to warrant the "instant-kill" reward for pulling it off, and effectively contradicts the traditional reasoning behind instant-kill knifing in video games.

here was our solution for balancing the knife:


  1. I've said this time and time again.

    The knife will be fixed when the guns are balanced. Everything goes hand in hand. As it stands right now, the best weapon on SVER is the knife.

  2. AGREED. MAG is a great game, but gameplay suffers as long was we're at the advantage "bringing a knife to a gunfight."