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Game Balance & The Endgame


The Curator
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On 9/20/2020 at 11:45 PM, EmperorSteele said:

That's an interesting test, @FUBARczar. Though I play exclusively on Excel and never heard of it being run (feels bad, man).  In any event, it makes sense: Doms are supposed to be a pure offense AT, but they trade raw power for control, and controls don't work very well against +4 enemies. Doms don't have any self defense, buffs, or debuffs, unless you go out of your way to build for it. Also, are all these characters SO's only, or are they all loaded with VR ATOs, IO sets, incarnate abilities and/or P2W buffs?

Because those later few things would skew the results a LOT, especially if we're talking about baseline damage and the ability of controls to affect the mobs.

Here's a test I would propose: SO's only, no incarnates or outside buffs, regular run at +0/x8. See if Doms stay on the bottom compared to other ATs doing the same test or not. I predict completion times will be higher, and that some ATs will trade places (I feel like the 4-man Controller group were all Illusion/*, good luck keeping a good time WITHOUT perma PA!)

Though I guess an argument could be made that the Devs here are looking at endgame performance, and that DOES mean IOs and Incarnates and all that, so if WITH all that Doms fall behind, then it is something worth looking at. Maybe allowing Domination to up the secondary effect/debuff mods on their blast powers?

No outside buffs P2W, Inspirations, etc.  Those time are just your own powers including incarnates.

 

Now we run the same (No deaths, No Temps, No Inspirations) and also buff enemies and debuff players.

 

If you like running everything at +4/8 come join us on the Master ITF channel on Excel - we do other stuff too  😜

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On 9/20/2020 at 6:45 PM, EmperorSteele said:

That's an interesting test, @FUBARczar. Though I play exclusively on Excel and never heard of it being run (feels bad, man).  In any event, it makes sense: Doms are supposed to be a pure offense AT, but they trade raw power for control, and controls don't work very well against +4 enemies. Doms don't have any self defense, buffs, or debuffs, unless you go out of your way to build for it. Also, are all these characters SO's only, or are they all loaded with VR ATOs, IO sets, incarnate abilities and/or P2W buffs?

Because those later few things would skew the results a LOT, especially if we're talking about baseline damage and the ability of controls to affect the mobs.

Here's a test I would propose: SO's only, no incarnates or outside buffs, regular run at +0/x8. See if Doms stay on the bottom compared to other ATs doing the same test or not. I predict completion times will be higher, and that some ATs will trade places (I feel like the 4-man Controller group were all Illusion/*, good luck keeping a good time WITHOUT perma PA!)

Though I guess an argument could be made that the Devs here are looking at endgame performance, and that DOES mean IOs and Incarnates and all that, so if WITH all that Doms fall behind, then it is something worth looking at. Maybe allowing Domination to up the secondary effect/debuff mods on their blast powers?



@FUBARczar makes a point which I have presented many times in other posts. 
The much better route to solving balancing issues is to buff under-performing sets, not swing nerf bats to the others. 
If things are under performing, is it because the under-performers need a bit of love ?  In this game, this seems to be the case. 

Also, another important issue. 
This game has overwhelming amount of content that is too easy, and players, the vast majority of them, will stay or remain with such easy game content (sometimes patting themselves on the back because they cruised with their "powerful" builds through such easy content ) 

The more challenging content in the game seems to be the better tests for sets and builds 

Far too often I have seen players with their "uber" builds partake some of the challenging content in the game only to be obliterated, and instead of farming anything , they are the ones getting farmed by the critters in the game.   

BUt... balancing changes seemed to be based on performances on game content that is already way too easy. 

Take for example heavy proc builds --

They are powerful and kill stuff quick, but the more they do content that is much more challenging, the more those proc builds seem to do nothing, while you are dead, you are doing nothing.    Once they learn to include other things to balance out the build, the less and less procs in the build until ultimately you pretty much eliminate the procs or leave one , maybe 2 procs in the whole build, if you can fit them at all and survive.   Once you start aiming for and achieving the defensive , survivability, or sustainability numbers required, the more the first things that have to be sacrificed are your procs.  

And, as Fubar said, and I will add to that, once you take incarnates out, a lot of the builds or sets need to be changed and further balanced out. 
Once you take the inspirations away, many builds seem to have lots of holes
once you start pairing up more difficult enemies the more and more you start seeing just how week some builds are or just how weak some power sets are. 

If they were ever to nerf procs , they would be doing so on the performance on game content that is cheesy easy. 
A decision about wether or not to nerf procs would be more proper when putting those builds under difficult challenges. 

In easy game content, almost anything works in this game.  
When you start doing challenging stuff, you start filtering out what is weak or bad a lot more easily. 

Fubar and I belong to the Master ITF chnl 

We not only do ITF at challenging settings, we also do other Task forces, Ouroboros arcs, and our favorites -- AE challenging missions. 

9 times out of 10 we have new people joining us, who before doing things with us felt they had uber builds but end up not doing much except dying over and over and getting farmed by the critters. 

THen they start learning how to build a proper balanced build  and start having a much bigger picture, enhanced vision, of what's balanced and what is not balanced in the game. 

From experience and testing, I will add my two cents on Doms. 

They are at the bottom of the whole group of ATs when put to the test in the ITF. 

I am the only player who has verifiably solo'd the Master ITF challenge, with no insps, no deaths, no temps, at 54 x 8, and that took me 2 hours and 50.  My other ATs will smoke the Dominator.  This has nothing to do with Pylon testing DPS , it's not about dmg. 

It's about the mez ability being wiped out because Cimerorans have near permanently break free 

On the other hand, Doms are perhaps at second place or third place and smoke the rest when another very challenging content  is ahead -->

 I have done a huge open map of Carnies 54 x8 solo, no inspirations, no temps, and after I did that, in the same map , I also solo'd the lvl 54 Carnies AV, and I am the only one who's verifiably done this.  

The only ones I see with ability to do this are some very well built Night Widows (inside Psy Def and resists and lethal damage is so deadly vs carnies) , some tanks, some brutes, again, no inspirations used, no temps, not even base buffs, no amplifiers and so on. 

 

Based on all that the Dom , for me, is still outperformed vastly by other ATs when doing the ITF but on some other stuff, it does very well. 
On one of my builds for my dom, I can do the LGTF phases before hitting the Hami, and he does fine, and perhaps better than many other combos or ATs,  again, using no inspirations, no temps.    

So based on all this I cannot say Doms are at the bottom of ATs, but definitely at the bottom of the ITF testing and by far. 

This is because the Dom is a bit unbalanced when it comes to defenses and offense  when it comes to defenses and mitigation in the ITF settings,  and that's me saying after using the combo of sets that arguably provide the best package of mitigation among all doms -- the Dark/Dark dominator , with all the good to hit debuffs and heals, confuse, strong fear, and nice combination of 3 pets... With all of that.. it cannot hold a candle to any other AT in the game for such difficult challenging settings in the ITF. 

Comparing runs on very easy content , like radio missions , and that sort of thing... 

We should not be making nerfs based on doing game content that is so easy

COH is very easy for the most part ( once IOs came to the game)

It's time to steer players to more challenging content, steer them away from doing only the easy stuff. 

The nerfs in Diablo 3 occur after seeing results in the most difficult of conditions.  I have plenty of experience in D3 and I was a world ranked player of D3 as well, and I left once I discovered CoH is back. 

But their criteria for nerfing is on point, it is based on the performance under the most difficult of settings, not the easy stuff. 

 

Edited by Voltak
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I left the Master ITF channel because it seemed to be primarily for talking about (1) arbitrarily imposed rules, (2) unverifiable claims of being the best, and (3) more than anything, a penis measuring chat channel. Definitely not the playstyle for everyone.

 

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5 hours ago, arcane said:

I left the Master ITF channel because it seemed to be primarily for talking about (1) arbitrarily imposed rules, (2) unverifiable claims of being the best, and (3) more than anything, a penis measuring chat channel. Definitely not the playstyle for everyone.

 


I am new to the chnl 

I don't know of anyone who has made any claims about being the best there. 

Who was claiming to be the best ?  

What are the arbitrarily imposed rules you are talking about?  

Since I have been there, no one was measuring anything. 

Some of the best help in game, for me, came from people in the channel 

I have also paid it forward and I have helped others as much as I saw others help me out tremendously 

Everyone I know in the chnl and who has teamed with me many times, has been nothing but helpful

Most of the people there are helpful 

 

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On 10/20/2021 at 10:05 AM, Industrious1 said:

I'm hoping that the new 'hard' mode that is being introduced will start to supercede some of the arbitrary measuring sticks that we use now for effectiveness.

 

Could you clarify what you mean by "arbitrary measuring sticks"? And what you would like to see different.

Just curious.

Edited by Wavicle
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Pylons,  soloing TF's,  specific AE challenges.    Off the top of my head.

 

Impressive feats, certainly.  But not something that I would say the majority of players are interested in or take part in due to  the very specific nature of setting up the attempts.

 

Having a new mode that will be more accessible (hopefully) will bring more people to the table and we can get a much more broad sense of what players are capable of rather than engineered scenario's that may favor certain AT's over others.   Personally I am hoping to see effectiveness drawn not only from the pool of damage dealers/damage sponges but also from a solid emp that is diligent in keeping CM on the squishies consistently or a sonic that works to keep all of his teammates (when possible) in their bubble to soak some of those orange numbers.

 

Right now we as a player-base are focused on very specific metrics of success, which is fine,  but I'd like to see that expanded outwards and beyond.  

 

Edited by Industrious1
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I'd have to argue that the players not interested in the mechanics of the game that allow for stupid-X tricks will not be getting themselves involved in hard mode in the first place.

 

I hope they do, I hope hard mode is a raging success story, but I'm also a realist and a cynic.

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8 hours ago, Industrious1 said:

Pylons,  soloing TF's,  specific AE challenges.    Off the top of my head.

 

That plus all the other ways we have to create our own difficulty instead of just having good endgame content. Like this whole level 44 TF fad. It’s harder, I get it. Other games don’t make me choose between modest difficulty and a maxed out build though. And I do boosters, not catalysts, so the whole thing demands I redo my builds. So it’s just dumb and I refuse to engage with it.

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I don't think it's cynical to admit that niche content will appeal to a niche audience, @Bill Z Bubba, and I'm fairly sure that Cobalt and Piece are both aware of that.

It would be nice, though, to see some of the other niches getting interested and talented volunteer devs permitted in to the team to reach toward the "everybody" target from the mission statement.

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2 hours ago, Bill Z Bubba said:

 

I'd have to argue that the players not interested in the mechanics of the game that allow for stupid-X tricks will not be getting themselves involved in hard mode in the first place.

 

I hope they do, I hope hard mode is a raging success story, but I'm also a realist and a cynic.

I’m certainly skeptical it will be widely popular, but I’m absolutely certain it will be more popular than the highly unpopular mechanisms we have now for pumping difficulty up past +4x8. Mostly because it very clearly is intended to allow people to simultaneously experience difficulty and IO’s/incarnates/inspirations/etc at once instead of the typical “you think the game is easy? Why haven’t you gimped yourself?” nonsense that floats around here.

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On 10/22/2021 at 5:30 PM, arcane said:

I’m certainly skeptical it will be widely popular, but I’m absolutely certain it will be more popular than the highly unpopular mechanisms we have now for pumping difficulty up past +4x8. Mostly because it very clearly is intended to allow people to simultaneously experience difficulty and IO’s/incarnates/inspirations/etc at once instead of the typical “you think the game is easy? Why haven’t you gimped yourself?” nonsense that floats around here.



On a relevant note, I do want to express my appreciation to you all, the players who have taken time, your own personal time, to create AE content.  I am especially referring to challenging AE content that can be done at lvl 50, or 45+.  

Doing Task Forces at 44 is not a fad.  I am guessing you are referring to doing the ITF at lvl 44, therefore cutting off incarnates at once. 
This is not a fad, at least I certainly not seen it outside of one channel that I know of, and I play on two servers.  
It is a very tiny, a microscopic few, that engage in this.  The creator, or the brains behind this is @EV.    Blessed his heart.  EV did it because he feels, and others feel, the game, the vast majority of this game is just too easy, especially when incarnates are in the mix.  

However the vast majority of players don't like it to be this challenging.  I get it. 

Enter the AE challenging content created by players.  When COH was live, I created a few of these.  I loved it.  
When I came back to the game, I hooked up with @Linea because we both belong to Repeat Offenders. 
Line loved to create and play these challenging missions.  When I say challenging, Linea's lvl 50+ content makes Task Forces at lvl 44 with no inspirations, no incarnates, no temps... his 801 series make all these things look very easy in comparison.  
Line helped me to get motivated to doing this. 
I created some that made his own tank(s), who could survive his own 801 series, faceplant in the first mob he faced. 

Was it extreme?  Of course, it was.  Did it catch the interests of players wanting challenges?  You bet it did.  Thanks again to @Linea who took his time to analyze every single number of the mechanics of what was happening in my AE missions.  He offered a few tips on how to create more "mild" versions to suit more players. 
Believe it or not, Linea said that my mission would not be able to find a team to do it successfully to the end, yet, it was Linea and myself who completed it, the first ones to ever do it as a team, a team of two !   He was on his Plant/Time controller, and I was on my Empth.  

Then I had a few dominators who solo'd the whole thing thanks to the OP "confuse" in combination with domination.  From there it was adjusted. 

Then plenty more players started to join in and even asking me every day I logged on if I was going to run them so they can jump in. 

Linea took his time, I took my time, and I know many other players create AE content for the sake of more content and more challenges. 

My empathies to the Devs, they are only volunteers.   
Creating new content is very hard work. 

So I am patient. 

I joined you, Arcane, in asking for more content.  I really do.  I am also keenly aware that it's very hard to do it when your time is very limited and they are only volunteers not getting paid to do this. 

@Linea  I promise you, I know you asked me to do it, but I promise I will upload the videos. I got side tracked... a lot, lol.   Thank you for all the help and the motivation you have given me.  Viva 801 !  

Edited by Voltak
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If we do see a hard mode for content, I would expect it to be accordingly rewarding, and above all else, something that leverages the entirety of a chars powersets, in balanced teams, filling multiple purposes. So, not x8 blaster, x8 scrapper, etc etc. More of a mélange of ATs filling their respective strengths.

 

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