Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Is the Heavy becoming Obsolete?


While 'Heavy Suits are OP' was a popular theme in the first two builds, no one says that anymore. That would be just fine, but now there are complaints of the suit being ineffective in higher tiers. Recently discussion has focused on their excessive cost and low efficiency as they improve. So is the Heavy Obsolete? The very thread that sparked  the discussion here http://tinyurl.com/ct5qr8s acknowledges that a proper fix to stacking penalties may resolve many of the Heavy's so called 'issues'. As always, player skill will always have the biggest impact, and for that reason developers must tune with the skilled player in mind. Because if the skilled player is given too many advantages he breaks the game. Its quite possible that proper stacking penalties may fix the current damage disparity between heavies and other suits as they improve, but we decided to look at a few other options to keep it relevant but balanced.


The Heavy is unlike any other soldier that we have witnessed in FPS. This is one of the reasons its the center of so much debate. Most shooters have classes that are comparable to each other in health but the heavy shatters that perception. In RPG terms it is a slow tank that can deliver high DPS in the short to medium range area. Engaging it head-to-head and expecting it to die first is generally not a good idea. Although this piece focuses on how to prevent the heavy from becoming obsolete, the changes must start at lowering its range. Assault Rifle users have complained about excess range for the HMG for months and theyre correct. For game balance the heavy cannot be a medium long range weapon. Even sharpshooter proficiency level 5 should max its range out at about 50m. While max skills should allow it very high [80+%] efficiency at this range, the HMG breaks the game if it can outdamage a militia AR user with equivalent skills at 50m. The basic HMG should have a 30m max range and should be lower efficiency than an AR at that distance.

CCP Must be careful when tuning the heavy as it can easily become Godly. One of the core issues here is that the other dropsuits are able to lessen the disparity in durability and DPS as they advance. While damage can vary, this is unbalanced because the heavy goes up in cost but slowly loses its only advantage: Durability. One way to resolve this would be to increase the turn or movement speed of heavies, but we feel those limitations are at the core of what make the heavy uniquely balanced. What results is higher level assault, scout and logi dropsuits with the ability to engage the heavy inside its lethal area and outdamage it, which is grossly inconsistent.We cant allow other dropsuits total health that neutralizes the heavies main advantage, sponging damage. No dropsuit in the game should be allowed comparable survivability to the Heavy dropsuit unless they are willing to also share the downsides to durability. In addition, engaging the heavy inside the 15m range should be extremely lethal. The heavy is described as a 'defensive system that defies standard infantry conventions. No other classification can claim to be able to stand to-to-toe with enemy vehicles and survive.' We're confused. In many cases these suits are struggling to keep up with their same level counterparts. The heavy should not be standing toe-to-toe with tanks, but it has to keep its durability advantage.

Redesign Protection - This is one of the best suggestions we've seen in some time. 2-Ton Twenty-One recommended a system where the protection of shield extenders and armor plates should be a % of dropsuit base armor and shields instead of a fixed rate. Dust 514 is still in beta and its not too late to revise this. Each dropsuit has its advantages. The heavy sacrifices movement, turnspeed and equipment for high short range damage. Giving armor plates and shield extenders a fixed damage takes away their biggest advantage and probably isnt realistic. No other dropsuit should have the ability to carry as much armor or power shields equivalent to the heavy's. This will affect the total health of most dropsuits but its the right thing to do.

Heavy Price & Slots - In our last piece we addressed how the cost of heavies must come down [the protoheavy suit currently exceeds the militia tank in cost] but as these dropsuits never receive equipment they should not receive reduced high & low powered slots. Thats a limitation that is excessive. The slots should go as follows: Militia 1-1, Standard 2-1, Advanced 3-2 and Prototype 4-3.

Melee Damage - We touched on this earlier. Its laughable to have all dropsuit melee damage identical. CCP has mostly done a great job separating the strengths and weaknesses of each suit, which is why this needs changing. If the Heavy does 135 dmg, assault should be 70, Logi 50 and Recon 40. Few would argue the heavy hasnt earned more melee damage due to its slow, plodding tank nature.

Perks - The Duvolle can do 900 damage in 1.3 seconds without headshots. There's nothing we can do about that as the heavy hitbox insures that it eats atleast 95% of the shots in its direction. What we can do is increase the lethality of engaging heavies in their killzone. We'd like to see the HMG get a base 150% damage modifier within 15m. We'd also like to see the HMG get a suppression effect in that range, making close range gunfights with heavies a bad idea. Advantages like these are limited but punish players for engaging the HMG where its strongest.

 As always, we'll continue to attempt to help promote and publish ideas that help establish, enhance and grow the Dust 514 community as much as we can. Have any ideas that need sharing? Would you like to join our staff as a writer? Be sure to contact us at magww@live.com

25 comments:

  1. i still hate heavys

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  2. Heavies should never get that many slots on their suit... They can never end up being self sufficient in any way regarding repair or else.
    Heavies may be the only suit that should keep getting more base HP between tiers and still have a pretty low amount of slots. Equipment being out of question.
    And regarding the re-design of protection.... It's way too unfair. Why would a module that cost the same amount of ISK bring 40HP to scouts, 65 to assault and 120 to heavies ? Non-sense. Same goes with repair modules on armor.


    And 150% damage for HMG under 15m. Come on.... I run proto suits and even a basic hmg mows me down in CQC. HMG still is a huge beast and now can overrun your AR at 40m. i'd even add that they are way too fast to start firing and with too much accuracy while moving considering it is supposed to get more and more accurate over time.

    And HMGs dont need a boost at all.

    Also suppression effect ? HMG already slows you down like hell when caught in fire.

    If all your suggestion were to make it in, heavies would become god, no doubt about that. What would be left ? slow speed ? Come on, they aint that slow to begin with....

    Let's picture the proto heavy you're suggesting:

    - 800 armor base HP
    - complex % armor plate (if still gives 125 for an armor assault, should then reach around 300-400+ HP for heavies)
    - one complex repairer (if still 5 HP for armor assault, would reach 15-20 hp per sec for heavy armor)

    => 1200-1300 armor with a 20 hp per sec.
    => Add a complex CPU extender, 2-3 damagers on high slots and your proto HMG with 150% bonus + damagers + skills

    => God.

    The only point of heavies is to SUCK bullets not do MORE damage than any other suit. And at close range, they already do a good job at it imo. Yes proto is too expensive, and yes they should have keep their base HP growth over tier but more slots, more power for the HMG (...) is not the way.

    As for the % thingy, it's the best way to create more problems than it would solve.

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    1. Boomer Dues MortisMarch 26, 2013 at 10:02 AM

      Why should a scout be able to have as much extra protection as me, it makes no sense. Heavies proto suit should at least be 3-3 not 3-2. We have no equipment slots, that should be made up somewhere.

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    2. agree, i run assault and no recon should be able to fit the same amount of armor that i can. they want to be fast they have to deal with the consequences.

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    3. Scout having as much protection as you ? we're not talking about the same game...

      Heavy is built in with protections....

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    4. ur missing the point. he's right each suit should not be able to fit the same amount of armor and shields. everything else is separated by dropsuit type isnt it?

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    5. to answer your 40/65/120 question. because thats the dropsuit and tradeoff you chose. you agree to sacrifice speed for armor in a scoutsuit the same way heavies agree to sacrifice movement, turnspeed and equipment for being hard to kill.

      dont be a hypocrite. u want dropsuits separated by type when it suits you but scream "we need to be fair" when it comes to protection? come on bro.

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  3. +10 to the post above

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  4. I'm keeping it short since I'm on a phone.

    Bad idea. My most common deaths are snipers (on the broken three point map), tanks (which is expected) and heavies. The irony here is that my majority of my kills against them are under 15m and they destroy me above that distance especially when there's no cover. Heavies are not underpowered.

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    1. u dont run proto do u? cuz protoassaults and recon can go toe 2 toe with heavies and win.

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    2. I actually still run standard, I'm working on advanced assault right now.

      Even so, it shouldn't take a 100,000 ISK + modules and weapons to kill a cheap suit with ease.

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  5. The article is about disparity in the higher tiers, No one is saying give the heavys a 42% 4 damage mod buff. The fixes all require the damage mod staking penalty's be fixed. As of right now a proto assault can run proto AR with a 42% dmg buff. no ones saying making the heavy as wrong as that is. Dmg mod fix is integral to a heavy rebuild.

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  6. good article

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  7. heavies have zero equipment slots. someone explain why they wouldnt have as many high and low slots as assault?

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    Replies
    1. cause they have a massive base HP ? And have acces to heavy weaponry ? Oh yeah, that's it.

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  8. i could understand a small expansion to the slot layout, and i have no fucking clue why a heavy VK.1 costs 3 times as much as a heavy VK.0

    but most of the rest is overdone or pointless.

    changing melee damage really won't matter. how often do you see heavy suites landing melee attacks? they don't have the mobility to dictate range.

    increasing the hmgs damage at close range while reducing it at long turns it into a gimmick. it's already fairly solid damage at close range. really nothing but a shotgun can compete. and let the weapons hipfire only accuracy restrictions keep it in check at range. i do feel like they might build accuracy to fast now (it is faster than ever before)but they also seem to cap out at a worse level of accuracy than they used to.

    and % based health modules won't work, they'll either be useless for scouts or OP for heavies.

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    1. percentage based health modules wont work? why? becuz ur assault will take a hit and wont be able to challenge the heavy in total health? its a necessary and consistent change.

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    2. We have to agree with Chris here. static values for shield extenders and armor plates looked good on paper. sadly what it gave us is higher level scouts & assault that were able to close the durability gap on heavies. proto logis can reach over 1100 total health while the protoheavy is still south of 1300. thats a disparity that is pretty embarassing.

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  9. we're glad this sparked as much discussion as it did. whether you agree with our writer or not you views and opinions are welcome.

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  10. I just wish it wasnt so easy for scouts to walk back and forth thru my bullet stream. I dont think its actualy calculating 2000 rpm. Heavies aren't over powered they are larger and easier to hit, it takes forever for it to turn making it impossible to fight a skilled scout. And i would like to emphasise impossible, if the scout can circle me faster then i can turn i cant kill him. In addition to running heavy i start out my matches as a scout and i have zero fear of heavies, because i control the range of our encounter and if i can get to any obstacle that is at least as tall as my clone then the heavy has to wait untill some one comes to help becuase he cant chase me around anything. A lack of patients is normally the problem with people trying to take down heavies. Just get him to fire enough bullets he has to reload then you have tons of time to take out the heavies. And stop sayin that hmg's shouldnt be able to fire 50 m. If you are getting out gunned by a heavy at 50 m your problem is your aim. Get a pal to join maches with you till you get n the same match, go 50 m from him then try have a shoot off. if you lose consider taking up call of duty, it might be more your speed.

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  11. allow swarm launchers to lock on heavies like vehicles

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