Friday, May 3, 2013

Talking Community Issues with the CPM



On the heels of their PC Victory [getting PC set back to launch day] forum poster Prius Vecht recently posed a variety of hot topic questions to members of the CPM. We recognize the value of seeing what their point of view is as these are the individuals tasked with helping chart the path of the game in its first year. They must not only represent the community to the devs but must assist in the decisions that will improve the game.

Some may even run for the CPM next year, if so its pretty important for the community to know their views on things like the AFK Phenomenon, The Mass Driver, Friendly Fire and even Breach Weapons. These could be the very platforms they run on in the future. We've collected answers so far from Iron Wolf Saber and Cazaderon. Hopefully Hanz Jagerblitzen, Kane Spero, Nova Knife and Jenza will chime in at some point. Read below for their answers.

We covered a variety of topics. Below are their comments.

AFKing
IW: Should remove rewards for idling. Effort should provide rewards.
LC: Full Disclosure, i've been AFKing the MCC more than once while doing website stuff or household stuff. Yet, i'm completely against such possibilities existing. I've already said that quite a few times but i warned CCP day one when they announced the new skill system that the "5 sec in battle = 1 SP" rule was like sending a postcard to the community with a huge "Come AFK in the MCC" written on it.

Now, how to fix it ? I dont believe in anti-idle stuff. Nor do i believe in just allowing people to go everywhere and seek a hidden dude afking against a wall with a taped joystick so they can kill him. Why ? Cause people will still try and those will still hurt pub games.

Now, my idea is in three step :
1) Having the roll-over cap thingy so people dont feel the urge to just run after active SP
2) Completely take away the 5 sec = 1 SP rule. And add a multiplier to the WP = SP component.
3) If needed, balance some WP income so that lower WP grinding roles (DS pilots) get more WP.

HJ:  This is a rather complex issue and it should be no surprise that this will be my longest response of the entire survey. First and foremost you should all know that I simply hate grinds, period. Any kind of grind, in any kind of game. In the long run, if Dust514 becomes the compelling sandbox game we hope it will be, than it will have an intrinsic fun value that drives people to log in the same way people to for EVE Online, and the game should be balanced for player skill, not skill points. Grinds are an industry tactic to get you to spend money playing a game you might otherwise be bored with, and I hold CCP to a high standard in trying to overcome this problem.

How does this apply to AFK skill point accrual? Frankly, because of my aforementioned hatred of all things grind, I really don't think we should have to log into the game at all to obtain usable skills, let alone log into a match. If the game were full passive – the AFK debate would be nonexistent. Every player joining a match would be doing so to participate with their friends, not to complete their forced daily grind. We cannot afford to lose sight of this undeniable fact when engaging in the AFK debate.

Now, I understand that culturally, rewarding player skill in combat with a tangible, visceral, instant reward system is essential to satisfying the pavlovian response cycle that makes many shooters compelling play. But in the process of tying this psychological reward to skill points (as opposed to isk and loot only), the designers have essentially created AFK behavior as a completely unnecessary by-product. Again, if we all progressed equally (or at a boosted rate w/ aurum purchases), we'd log in and play for fun, or to get rich, or both. AFK problem solved.

Where does that leave us in the meantime? Well, for starters many of you in the community have been quite outspoken in support of active skill point accrual. You have your reasons for doing so, I have mine for disagreeing. Furthermore, it would be completely irresponsible for me to impose my personal loathing of skill point grinds (and this obnoxious and completely unnecessary AFK behavior as its byproduct) upon the community simply because I'm in a position to influence CCP. So lets get that out of the way. However, we'll continue to get annoying AFK behavior for as long as we cling to an active SP system. There are many ways of dealing with this, essentially, but they tend to fall into two primary categories:

1.) Remove all SP for being in a match, except for that which you accrue by killing people or successfully completing objectives. This is the standard knee-jerk feel-good response, because it rewards the hardcore and punishes the lazy, but it comes at a significant cost. It not only guarantees that you have to grind to get ahead (turning your time as a merc into work rather than play), it also creates an unhealthy obsession with warpoint accrual, which is destructive in a game that's about teamwork and tactics as the community's already unhealthy obsession with K/D ratio. I want mercs to focus solely on what their squad commanders tell them, and for discipline and cooperation to be the qualities that bring success to your corp, and the highest rewards the game has to offer. K/D obsession taints that, as does the warpoint chasing that stems from our refuse to entertain the idea of a purely passive skillpoint accrual system.

While many here come from other shooters, myself included (many of you may not know this but I chose my EVE name "Hans" because my Modern Warfare crew butchered the pronunciation of the "Hanshotfirst" in my Xbox Live handle so often that I grew accustomed to responding to "Hans" in combat) However, Dust514 is a truly unique game and we need to think outside the box here, and not let our old habits and expectations cripple the game from becoming what it needs to become: A premier tactical and strategic warfare experience. It should also be noted while we're on the subject of removing time-based SP accrual that it also directly punishes new players, which undermines CCP's stated objective of make the "shallow" end truly shallow, and the "deep" end of the game truly deep (and balanced for player skill). It has taken ages to reduce the "learning cliff" for EVE Online, and they'd be foolish to bring that back into Dust514 just because some people want everyone to have to be GOOD at the game in order to play it and enjoy all of the gear available.

2.) Allow more friendly fire options (or vote-to-kick options) to allow player enforcement of this issue. NOW we're thinking like residents of New Eden. This, more than anything, needs to happen and needs to happen as soon as possible. Faction Warfare is a great example. I couldn't tell you for the life of me why CCP continues to cling to this idea that Faction Warfare is akin to public matches and therefore needs the same artificial (and annoying as hell) safety system keeping us from murdering whomever we want. It's even worse now that they've revealed the lack of additional rewards for FW matches above and beyond instant highsec battles, another issue I will be blasting them on until it is resolved. Bottom line is this - I'm a career faction warfare pilot, and on plenty of occasions me and my Alliance have shot fellow militia members for myriad reasons – and we've always been prepared to handle all of the social consequences for doing so. 

NK: I'll be clear on this. I love the idea of being able to go AFK and infuriate, and sabotage a team. What I don't like, is how rewarding it is. AFK'ing should be something someone does when they see a wallet flash in the warbarge from someone on the enemy team saying "Please don't kill me, here's something on the side to betray your team" The incentive to AFK needs to be drawn from player actions WITH player consequences (Including friendly fire) instead of free and easy rewards like it is now.

Sharpshooter Skill
IW:  I am so glad that the current sharpshooter skills have been removed in uprising, it eliminates the uneven advantage of a veteran vs new player on the same exact weapon. AKA removes Range immunity.
LC: I actually discussed that specific topic with Gavin Frankle at FanFest after the advancing the core presentation.

The point here is to make weapons keep their very specialized field of expertise. People already mentioned shotguns having a way too long range but that goes for mostly every weapon.

At max skill, AR ended up with a mid-long range (120 max/55m optimal maxed out), actually pretty much the efficiency of a base laser rifle without any SS. Laser became very long range weapons, same for HMGs that were reaching even further than ARs etc...

Without any Range skills, each weapon is kinda locked in its range area. Making having balance squads even more important than before. Also, it opens a vast array of racial weapon variants using the base range as a specific characteristic like they hinted in the CCP presents conference.

The Caldari Rail Rifle will probably be long range AR with less DPS output. And same kind of differences will probably exist for every racial variant of the weapons

Another advantage of the no range skill is that progressing through different weapon tier becomes more interesting as you get more and more range. Duvolle has 4 m more in optimal and that changes a lot compared to a standard one. Will maybe incentize people to not just use Exile AR with DMG mods.

So overall, i'm pretty much liking this decision. But i think it may require some adjustments. Even though i played Uprising i cannot give you guys any of the new ranges and stuff as i didnt have enough time. Especially as ranges still arent in the attributes screen. Anyway, optimal Range feels a little bit limited on some weapons. Max range is one thing but optimal is actually the thing that matters. So i think some weapons may need a slight buff on that part. But we'll all have to figure this out after playing the build for a while.

Another important thing to know is that they are looking at changing the way damage falloff works. At the moment, it's pretty much I\O. Either the bullet hits you or it doesnt. A small step is enough to go from I to O. They'd like to smooth that transition between damage\no damage and the way damage decreases over range.

Also, it would make sense to see some range modules down the line just like EVE has. Would actually give the possibility to trade Damage or Defense for Range. So there's some work planned there on the range matter. But overall i think it will make the game more interesting.
HJ: I'm actually quite happy to see it go away. By affecting base range of a weapon, it becomes a must-have skill rather than one that compliments a playstyle, and I abhor old-school skill systems where there's always an optimal set of skills to grab. It makes for a boring game, and I think that all the sharpshooter skill did was punish those that didn't max it out right away, which eliminates the feeling that I made a choice to invest points there. Besides, its conceptually garbage to begin with – every gun has a range that hinges on the amount of gunpowder you pour into it and the shape and weight of its projectile (to use 21st century tech as an example) – NOT the skill of the weapon's operator. Sharpshooter immediately screams out "can my character aim accurately?" and thus should affect a weapon's accuracy, not its range.

Friendly Fire
IW: Should be enabled in Low sec and Null. Maybe FW as well with penalty. It should not be allowed in high sec instamatching to prevent 'douche baggery' that should be reserved for antics in low and null instead.
LC: Definitely in favor of it being ON when game is out of High-Sec. Now, we would still need some counter-measures for people abusing it. Kane actually made some decent suggestions about adding a growing penalty for each TK in a game.

Here's what i'd like : 1st TK (warning), 2nd TK (Warning + ISK penalty), 3rd TK ( bigger ISK penalty + Death and\or Being kicked out of the battle with no SP or ISK), 4th TK (kicked out of the battle no SP no ISK - Lore : Dismissed of battle for treason)

A system like this could mean that a guy TKing on purpose could actually lose money and not just dont get any.

Now, this needs to take into account the fact that one dude with no will to TK can still TK once in a while. Or hell, miss its OB and insta-kill 4 comrades simultaneously. But i guess that kind of SL needs to be kicked out.
HJ: Friendly Fire needs to exist everywhere in the game except for highsec random matchmaking, and everywhere else we should allow players to enforce justice themselves. Self-destructing vehicles and the inability to murder someone standing right next to me are obnoxiously frustrating, immersion-breaking, and they have no place in the "cold harsh world" that CCP has decided to create with New Eden. The sooner we have friendly fire tools (tools being everything you could kill an enemy with), the better. I want Faction Warfare to be a place where people queue-sync multiple intact squads because they want to win, and where they cooperate with space-faring vessels for orbital support. The punishment for not working with other players and filling up a match to win should be that you take the risk of a random member joining a match to fill space, and that the random may not pull their weight. I'm absolutely confident that if CCP were to actually deliver on better rewards for FW to provide incentives for coordinated queue-syncing, that friendly fire won't be anything to be afraid of because players will simply grief the useless into not bothering to show up if they don't actually want to help their faction win.

Prox Chat
IW:  I am opposed to proxy chat in needing 'dedicated' resources to make possible. The dev time required for the effect out is extremly low vs dev time in to better communications such as push to talk on team but voice default in squad. Its not that useful overall cept for yelling at dead people which btw is no longer working in uprising as they took out the ability to view or hear what is going on the new death screen.
LC: Pretty much in favor. To me it's a nice social tool to meet new players AND would help improve voice comms possibilities in Dust. At the moment, you dont have cross-chat over several rooms, like say a SL channel or something like MAG had.

This causes people to just stay in their squads on pub games. And in Corp Games it forces player to be very careful and not speak to much so squads can stay organized.

Now, i get devs being afraid of trash talks and such so maybe the best solution would be to just add team proxy chat. That's what i would root for.
HJ: I don't see the need for this as crucial compared to the myriad other tools we need much sooner – player trade, a working economy, corporate management tools, etc. There are some simple communication options I'd love to see, such as a push-to-talk that broadcasts to your whole team rather than your squad, and a push-to-talk that lets you broadcast to your enemy as long as they could turn it off to reduce spam (proximity would be fine in this case) but I don't see lack of proximity chat as something that's crippling the game the way that the absence of other features is.


Decision not to give players art design for the Caldari, Gallente and Amarr Logi
IW: They are in Uprising. Just not different design versions.
LC: To be honest, i dont care much about graphics. Dont mistake me, i enjoy a nice design and love the new suits. But it doesnt bother me to have two identical skins for different roles as long as you can still tell which they are. Colors in that case.
HJ: Non-issue. CCP is on-board, The full racial suit line-ups are in the backlog, and will be released as soon as they are finished. Many are coming in Uprising.


Breach Weapons
IW: Overall as long as the drawbacks per shot are proper most breech weapons are okay similar to assault and tactical and specialist.
LC: Tough one. I'd have a different answer for each weapon type.
Overall, i know people complain that the global DPS of those weapons is way below what standard one offer. And usually with a lower range as well. I'm not gonna argue with the fact they are pretty useless in Chromosome. yet some weapon types suffer less from this. For instance, breach SG is ok imo.

As for solutions, i'd wait for Uprising and see if there has been any change with those. Maybe adding a better HS modifier could be a good idea. Or raise their efficiency against armor or shield depending on the weapon type so they actually do BREACH.
HJ:  I used to be a huge fan of the breach SMG series early in the closed beta, but these and other breach weapons were hit way too hard with the nerfbat during the most manic phase of Dust514's weapons balancing last year (you all know the period I'm talking about, when we often had no idea why a weapon was being changed before it was suddenly buffed or nerfed to comical extremes). As a result, we now have a couple options here or there that are functional, but most would agree that breach weapons simply don't have the damage output to compensate for their reduced fire rate. I don't think that resulting DPS needs to be exactly comparable for breach variants, they can be slightly less than stock weapons and compensated for by the fact that breach fire has less recoil and that the user is more likely to land solid hits (assuming perfect hit detection, of course). And breach Forge Guns, when used in groups, have a wonderful Alpha quality to them that I can see being more and more useful as the scale of combat gets bigger and vehicles are more commonplace. But right now? They need some love, and the plummeted popularity of breach variants simply confirms that there's still a problem.

Matchmaking
IW:  There seems to be an imbalance but its uncertain what is working and what isnt. It can certainly use refinement.
LC: Those two are pretty much the same thing.
Imo, matchmaking is gonna end up being an obsolete concept soon or later. We mainly discussed it due to the lack of possibilities in Dust during the beta. Every one was just pub stomping and thus new players suffered from bored vets hack and slashing them.

I dont believe dust should ever have a hard limit like 0-3 Million SP, 3-5, etc.. type of games. Those hard limits just cut the player base and that's bad. Lately i thought it may be a good idea but now i'm pretty sure it's not.

Now, having a subtle mechanic that tries to sort players going in a pub game by taking their SP into account doesnt strike me as odd. As long as it's not a hard limit.

Now regarding proto pub stomping. The new layout of dropsuits will help a lot on that specific matter. Light, Medium and Heavy Basic suits are pretty much an exact copy of the specialized suit you can use after those basic ones. And the SP need to reach Proto is waaaay lower than it is in CHR. Something like 940K SP to reach proto.

This means that new players will pretty quickly reach gear that will match the ones vets use. Those will still have an advantage as they will be using specialized ones and benefit from the racial and specialty bonuses but the gap will still be way smaller than what we have now.

Bottom line, i'm saying that Uprising with PC, FW, and the new dropsuit layout may not need anything more to make pub games less repelling to NPE.
HJ: I'll be really blunt about this one – I really could care less about the mechanics that drive highsec matchmaking. To me the really interesting part of the game should be Faction Warfare, Planetary Conquest, and 0.0 interaction, along with stuff like the recently mentioned "Penetration" game play for EVE ships and structures, none of which will rely on matchmaking algorithms. Granted, this shouldn't be comically out of balance, and I'm hoping CCP continues to tweak and refine the formula based on player feedback, but much like EVE Online itself the best advice I have for a noob is to plug into a group right away, and not to rely on the game itself to hold your hand and teach you how to stay alive. New Eden isn't fair, EVE isn't fair, and I don't really care if Dust514 is all that fair either, in the end.

CCP's time and resources need to be spent first and foremost on making sure that there are enough hardcore sandbox tools for the dedicated community to chew on and be satisfied with so that we're resorting to random matches as little as possible to begin with. The more that elite players engage in corp battles over districts, the less time they're back in highsec stomping noobs, and the less need there is to continually micromanage for perfect matchmaking balance.


Leaving matches to avoid losing assets
IW: High sec matches really don't matter so no penalties for leaving, however in lower and more the loss of the battle can easily net more losses in assets than what is worn. Its truly up to the player to budget him/herself.
LC: Instant match pub games arent suppose to be the backbone of Dust. By that i mean it's kind of the play it cool, not much fallout type of game. And you also have to consider people being actually disconnected, punishing those wouldnt be fair. Rage Quitting is kind of a universal plague in FPSes. I wont say i have any kind of perfect solution for it but i'm very open to suggestions.
HJ: Non-issue, really. It's another one of those things like AFK skill point accrual that is best left to player enforcement during advanced game play forms, or ignored during basic game play forms like highsec random matches, because there's nothing you can do to control other players that join a public match. If someone wants to be a coward and leave a match to protect their fancy suit and tank, whatever, I simply will inform my corp CEO that we have a dickhead in the midst and have them dealt with accordingly, or wait for another person to join the public match.

Framerate
IW: Goal should be 30 or better, but realistically 60 is really hard to pull off on current gens and 120 is out of the question (though 120 nearly has no 'real' effect since the human eye is tracked to 60.
LC: I dont think anyone will say this isnt important. It's kind of a dull question, no offense meant. It goes without saying that this is maybe top priority. in Chromosome, it was not enough stable to be satisfying.

Uprising seems more fluid, with a steadier framerate from what i saw. Now, i still had some small freezes in various spots on Plateus but this is probably map related. Will make my final judgment on framerate when build is released and huge fights have happened.
HJ: Non-issue until Uprising is released and we see whether the framerate holds up in situ as well as it did when we played it at Fanfest. Don't get me wrong – It is my opinion that maintaining a buttery smooth 30 FPS or better at all times and pitch-perfect hit detection should always be CCP's priority #1. This is a FPS, not a strategy game, and there should be no compromise on basic performance when we all have plenty of other shooters we could go play without these functionality issues. However, I'm confident that CCP has nailed the bulk of them with Uprising and we'll see far less forum chatter devoted to stability issues that have plagued us for a year since the launch of closed beta.

Armor Tanking vs Shield Tanking
IW: There needs to be more emphasis in differences.
LC: I can only speak for infantry on that one tbh. Until now, Armor tanking for infantry was pretty much a no-go before reaching proto. In Uprising, i think we'll see much more balance between shield and armor. Actually, it's one of the first thing i tried to do when i tested it. With the new suits and their slots layout, there's much more room for customization. Another factor is the addition of the efficiency notion for modules. The more you skill, the more the base stats of the modules upgrades.

Once more, i think uprising balanced this. Even though some specialty seems kinda silly. Like the assault specialty skill being "+3% (or 5) to shield recharge rate per level". With gallente assault suits pretty much 100% focused on armor, it seems a bit silly. But we'll have to wait and see over-time.

Anyway, i'm all in favor of having shield and armor on an even ground. It will only help make the game more interesting.
HJ: Too early to tell as there's dozens of variables that will affect the combat meta once Uprising deploys on the 6th, and the new weapons are added on the 14th. Let's revisit this a few weeks later to hammer out any lingering imbalances and take a new survey of where the holes are in the gear lineup once we've seen how everything performs.

Matchmaking and proto pub stomping
IW: I do not mind this really if someone wants to use proto suits in pubs and lose isk there its fine by me.
LC: Those two are pretty much the same thing.
Imo, matchmaking is gonna end up being an obsolete concept soon or later. We mainly discussed it due to the lack of possibilities in Dust during the beta. Every one was just pub stomping and thus new players suffered from bored vets hack and slashing them.

I dont believe dust should ever have a hard limit like 0-3 Million SP, 3-5, etc.. type of games. Those hard limits just cut the player base and that's bad. Lately i thought it may be a good idea but now i'm pretty sure it's not.

Now, having a subtle mechanic that tries to sort players going in a pub game by taking their SP into account doesnt strike me as odd. As long as it's not a hard limit.

Now regarding proto pub stomping. The new layout of dropsuits will help a lot on that specific matter. Light, Medium and Heavy Basic suits are pretty much an exact copy of the specialized suit you can use after those basic ones. And the SP need to reach Proto is waaaay lower than it is in CHR. Something like 940K SP to reach proto.

This means that new players will pretty quickly reach gear that will match the ones vets use. Those will still have an advantage as they will be using specialized ones and benefit from the racial and specialty bonuses but the gap will still be way smaller than what we have now.

Bottom line, i'm saying that Uprising with PC, FW, and the new dropsuit layout may not need anything more to make pub games less repelling to NPE.
HJ: I absolutely LOVE stomping on rich nerds that wear protogear into pub matches and lose them to my militia suits and militia guns. More of this, please!!

The lack of game modes
IW: Games for War fully explains the needs for proper game mode design.
LC: We've discussed this with the dev in the round tables at FF. Many people complained about it and i can certainly understand. Yet i think the top priority with Uprising was to do what they did : Make Dust a game that feels like a PS3 game.

Now, i certainly intend to see them focus on game mode. Even more, focus on expanding the different types of gameplay : PVE and Arenas are for me, major features that needs to be added asap. It will be good for us gamers, and even for the game, the growth in playerbase and the money income for CCP.
HJ: CCP is not only delivering a new game mode at Dust 514's launch on May 14th (and will no doubt continue to add more here and there) but has also been adamant about pushing development of the game as a whole towards open-ended Conquest gameplay for 0.0 space as well as "Penetration" game modes allowing us to take over EVE ships and EVE structures. As long as they keep their eye on this prize, Dust514 is headed in the right direction. During one of the Round Table discussions at Fanfest 2013 the issue of game mode variety was explicitly raised, and CCP Praetorian rightfully pointed out that in many other standard run-of-the-mill shooters, the developers wasted time building a dozen different game modes that mostly go unused. With this fact in mind, I cannot in good conscience push CCP to develop the same recycled game modes that go unplayed after the initial novelty wears off, when they need to put their time and energy into developing the game modes that no other shooter on the market has to offer.

Laser rifles being OP
IW: A damage and range nerf combo should be putting them into their places will have to wait for uprising to see the problem.
LC: Laser Rifles werent OP in CHR. Only the viziam had a way too high damage output compared to other lasers. Another problem was the defect in heat built up and the range evolution through skilling sharpshooters skills. And even with those things in mind, lasers werent actually OP. Just very efficient in their range. It's one of the most interesting weapon in Dust and shouldnt be nerfed too much.

Now, if i remember correctly, Viziam has been nerfed a bit in Uprising. But i didnt have the time to test lasers in depth at FF to be honest so let's wait and see.
HJ: I absolutely refuse to fall into the trap of "OMG IT HURTS AND KILLED ME THEREFORE IT MUST BE OP" that has wasted countless hours of people's time and filled page after page of whining on the forums. The bottom line is, lazer rifles have an inherent drawback built into them by the fact that they need time to charge to be effective, and are absolute garbage at close range. Thus, they fall firmly into the category of being well-balanced by player skill, which is far different than being an overpowered weapon.

A noobie can't just pick up a lazer and start melting everyone they come in contact with, you need to be well positioned on the battlefield, you need to hide the fact that you're charging your lazer or the victim will simply run for cover, you need to keep your bead on the target, and you need to monitor your heat build-up. If you do all of these things (and I'm one of those that can, in the interest of full disclosure) you can truly pwn with them, and they're delightfully fun. If every other weapon in the game required this much practice and knowledge in order to reach maximum effectiveness, Dustt514 would be in fantastic shape where its gear meta is concerned.


Unlimited ammo for Vehicles
IW:  While I would like to see this larger game play questions have to be answered such as how to balance such, rearming the vehicles, and logistics of it all and would take some time to redesign.
LC: I'd like to see vehicles needing re-supply. Would make more sense EVE-wise and probably make the game more interesting by reinforcing the link between vehicles and infantry interactions.

Yet, there are much more important stuff to deal with at the moment.
HJ: Now that we have the ability to recall our vehicles, I'm much more open minded about limiting ammo supply (and not just for tanks here, dropships and LAV's as well). We're all aware of how of how boring ambush mode gets when there's 3-4 tanks on the field, and one of the trivial ways to balance vehicle spam is to limit ammo supply. The reason that recalling vehicles comes into play is that everyone should be able to repair and protect their assets (for as much as CCP's charging for them), and if you run out of ammo I see nothing wrong conceptually with calling for pickup and asking for another. This recall / redeploy time would serves the same function that reloading between clips does for infantry, and creates a moment of vulnerability that can only be avoided by keeping supply depots alive for vehicles to interact with.

Last but not least, limiting ammo on vehicles provides an opportunity for a deeper set of support roles, such as an LAV that's equipped with an ammunition hold and capable of rearming a more stationary HAV that's laying waste from a secure position. This tactical depth is far, far more interesting than simply nerfing powerful combat vehicles to the point where they're no longer fun or worth the isk to deploy. HAV's should be incredibly powerful, but they should still require teamwork like everything else.


Command Structure
IW: Needs some improvement from issuing commands, who's boss, Looking for Squad, looking for corp, open corp squad rosters ect ect.
LC: If that means corp roles then we need more. No doubt about that. Best solution would be to offer to the CEO various options for all players, and not limit it to roles : Allow modify Roles YES\NO // Allow wallet management YES\NO // Allow Recruitment YES\NO etc.. This would be much more powerful than just pre-defined roles.

If you refer to command structure on the BF, i'd say we need more as well. but do we need more NOW ? I dont think so. Let's wait till we have bigger game mode to worry about that.
HJ: It's too early to call this a crisis yet, the current squad leader role works fine for the most part but especially as we move to Planetary Conquest and 16 vs 16 matches (or larger) we're going to need a "commander" role with similar functionality, along with the ability for the commander to relay orders to his squad leaders directly. In general I see this evolving organically as the map size and player count goes up and up, it won't be something CCP can ignore for much longer even though there hasn't been a glaring need in the past year. As I've said before, I want this game to be the premier tactical and strategic warfare experience where working in discreet teams to accomplish a variety of objectives should lead to the greatest success, and this can only be realized if CCP adds in additional leadership structure at the appropriate points whenever the player count in combat outgrows the existing tools we have to manage our troops.

Scrambler pistol 450% headshot dmg mod
IW: In light of the flaylock...I am not sure but it seems pistols are designed to be super deadly and if the theme continues but stay's 'reasonable' in the family.
LC: To me it's perfectly fine. We havent seen like half the playerbase using scramblers and mass OHKing people using it. So no problem there. It's not an easy weapon to land HS with so it deserves its HS bonuses imo. Yes it doesnt make sense lore wise but it's interesting regarding gameplay.

Overall, i find HS modifier to be way too small. I would be curious to know what you guys would think of a buff to HS. Say 200%. Some people complain about dust favoring gear over skills. This would help a lot in my opinion.

The topics below went unanswered but we're hoping Iron Wolf Saber, Cazaderon and the other members of the CPM will take time out to address them. Much thanks to Prius Vecht for coming up with an excellent battery of questions.
HJ: To be honest, I don't think we know if this is even a serious problem because the hit detection has been so horrible the past year. This is another one of those "OMG I JUST GOT HIT AND I DIED THAT GUN MUST BE OP" complaints in my opinion, at least until we know for a fact that when you aim at a person's head, its actually hitting their head. In practice, the hit detection the last year has been so abysmal that I suspect that even the majority of the players trying to take advantage of this bonus aren't successful at it (which is exactly why SMG's have consistently been the most popular sidearm). and this is just going to have to be a "wait and see" issue until we all have some hours with Uprising and we can see how Scrambler Pistols operate when you can aim and shoot reliably.

The one thing that HAS been a problem where Scrambler pistols are concerned has been their ability to snipe at comical range, which is one of the workarounds for the hit detection issue because everything has less transversal movement the farther distance you put between you and your target. This is an issue created by the Sidearm Sharpshooter skill (and made worse by Sidearm Sharpshooter Specialist), NOT the 450% bonus alone. With the range nerfed and the pistol once again being used as a close quarters weapon against fast-moving targets, its way too early to call the bonus as OP.

And believe me, I know this won't stop anyone from complaining about it either, but it does mean that I'll continue to ignore those that want to jump to conclusions based on an emotional response that isn't tempered by experimental evidence. In general, I think its rather foolish to make declarative statements about balance right before the meta is about to shift drastically because of these new variables, and I am deeply appreciative of those amongst you that understand this and show respect by not wasting forum space complaining about things that we don't know are problematic until we've had more time with them.


Prone
IW: Similar to the vehicle ammo issue, its a big game play questions to be asked. Overall I don't want it to turn into call of duty dropknocks and superman push-ups but would like it to help players lower their signature and shooting profile while severely reducing their mobility and possibly senses.
LC:
HJ:

Drones as assets
IW: I am filing this under strategic uses, I would like to see deploy-able drone hive that functions similarly to a turret but the main difference that when manned the turret can move and the drone is more destroy-able. The hive would produce replacements over time and the hive can be destroyed/hacked.

Heavies being OP


AV vs Tanks


Flash & Smoke grenades


MCC commanders


Corp Training Rooms


AUR rewards and contracts


Corp Armories


Player Trading market


Sky Spawning


Cloaking


Claymores


The missing dropsuit options on May 6


What are your opinions on penetration gamplay?


How do you feel about the mass driver?


LAVs being a OHK?

8 comments:

  1. good answers so far! want to see the rest answered tho. both 450% headshot and flaylock look to be way OP tho

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  2. Need more CPM input on Tanks, that's the hot topic right now.

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    Replies
    1. thats just tankers whining. just ignore them.

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    2. Thats right Ignore one of the most important player base in the game, vehicles can change the tide of a battle but it seems CCP are slaming them into the ground on the tears of players who dont know what a counter is. good job CCC.

      Its player comments like these that screw the different community areas over.

      If the CPM dont look at this area and what CCP are doing to vehicles and AV as a whole then they wont last long as player representatives.

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    3. you tankers with ur propaganda. your not getting solo'd by one guy with starter grenades. it takes a group of people with atleast STD AV weaponry to do damage and very few of them can destroy u before u get away unless ur dumb. you dominated early becuz very few people had solid AV, now many people have proto av. you act like nothing is supposed to scratch you.

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  3. Landing a headshot with the Scrambler pistol is extremely hard, so I believe it is fair.

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    Replies
    1. so is hitting someone with the mass driver, you dont see me asking for an extra 450%.

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    2. scrambler modifier is way excessive. can anyone that went to fanfest verify CCP Wolfman fixed that bullshit?

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