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Focused Feedback: Enemy Aggro Revamp


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6 minutes ago, PorkTips said:

Is this change intended to kill the Meteor Map or other open map farming? It seems highly targeted to do that.

 

Anyway, I can think of ways around it, so I guess the silver lining is that it will be fun figuring out a new meta for AFK farming.

The EXP/Inf changes will make it worse, whether it "kills" it or not. I'm still trying to test how far they can see. BUT the open map I usually farm, they're wandering around anyways in tight packed groups, so it doesn't matter. They will happen upon you and attack.
Remember though in the beginning, there was no aggro limit--but also no target limit. You could gather a whole Zone to one place and dispose of them. Slowly by yourself, or with a Blaster casting Nova!

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On 7/15/2022 at 11:01 AM, golstat2003 said:

 

Pop 2-3 defense insp then go to town. 😛 

Softcap ranged def and you’ll get the same effect 😄

Apparently I'm a forum grouch.

 

My profile pic is my reaction every time I read these feedback threads, or sometimes general discussion.

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One thing I will say, I am glad I have been prioritizing Ranged Defense over S/L on most of my squishies. That will be much more important after this change, IMO. Maybe I can see the future and I don't know that I can?! 😮 

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11 hours ago, PorkTips said:

Is this change intended to kill the Meteor Map or other open map farming? It seems highly targeted to do that.

 

Anyway, I can think of ways around it, so I guess the silver lining is that it will be fun figuring out a new meta for AFK farming.

 

No, the aggro changes are just to make the enemies appear less dumb.

 

The aggro changes are actually a buff to farming, because patrols won't wander off.

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I think a lot of newer players are going to have to learn about aggro management (... a few older players might have to re-learn). The aggro changes two years ago tamed all the critters. It was ridiculous that critters would stand about in aggro range with their arms folded in a virtual aggro holding queue waiting for the go ahead to start attacking a player. For farm maps like the meteor with patrols moving around (even without them) life got interesting.

 

America's Angel demo AFK map for example - jump in to the middle and critters are engaged both in melee range plus critters at range are lobbing fire blasts until an opportunity to move to melee range. Think 17 critters in melee range with 80+ at range lobbing fire blasts. They no longer remain passive with their arms folded waiting their turn to attempt to damage the player.

 

I imagine most farming builds are going to be overwhelmed with this and will need respecification.

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13 minutes ago, Lot said:

I think a lot of newer players are going to have to learn about aggro management (... a few older players might have to re-learn). The aggro changes two years ago tamed all the critters. It was ridiculous that critters would stand about in aggro range with their arms folded in a virtual aggro holding queue waiting for the go ahead to start attacking a player. For farm maps like the meteor with patrols moving around (even without them) life got interesting.

 

America's Angel demo AFK map for example - jump in to the middle and critters are engaged both in melee range plus critters at range are lobbing fire blasts until an opportunity to move to melee range. Think 17 critters in melee range with 80+ at range lobbing fire blasts. They no longer remain passive with their arms folded waiting their turn to attempt to damage the player.

 

I imagine most farming builds are going to be overwhelmed with this and will need respecification.

As pointed out to me, defense apps from P2W, will help a lot.

 

Yes, afk farmers might need to adjust.

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2 hours ago, Lot said:

I think a lot of newer players are going to have to learn about aggro management (... a few older players might have to re-learn). The aggro changes two years ago tamed all the critters. It was ridiculous that critters would stand about in aggro range with their arms folded in a virtual aggro holding queue waiting for the go ahead to start attacking a player. For farm maps like the meteor with patrols moving around (even without them) life got interesting.

 

America's Angel demo AFK map for example - jump in to the middle and critters are engaged both in melee range plus critters at range are lobbing fire blasts until an opportunity to move to melee range. Think 17 critters in melee range with 80+ at range lobbing fire blasts. They no longer remain passive with their arms folded waiting their turn to attempt to damage the player.

 

I imagine most farming builds are going to be overwhelmed with this and will need respecification.


Only afk farming. I have some builds that actively farm that won’t have an issue.

Edited by golstat2003
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4 hours ago, America's Angel said:

 

No, the aggro changes are just to make the enemies appear less dumb.

 

The aggro changes are actually a buff to farming, because patrols won't wander off.

 

 

Playing around with it on a couple of different maps, I have to agree. We may have to adjust some builds to account for the extra damage, but adaptation is nothing new. We've all had to change builds and tactics before.

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On 7/12/2022 at 2:03 PM, The Curator said:

Enemy Aggro Revamp

Enemy Aggro Behavior Adjustments

  • The aggro cap has been reworked to be less obvious and intrusive to gameplay.
    • The cap is still 17. If a player exceeds the cap, the AI will prefer any other valid target. This means in a team environment there is no change to enemy behavior.
    • If an AI-controlled enemy has no valid target due to them all being at the cap, it will choose the capped target with highest threat that is in range and use opportunistic ranged attacks. They will no longer mill about, oblivious to the action going on around them. Enemies that are beyond the cap *will not* pursue players that move out of range.
    • Aggro cap processing is more dynamic. Instead of using a rigid priority system, it now uses a simplified version of the normal threat calculation, taking into account distance, total damage done, taunt duration, and rank. It is also periodically re-evaluated instead of being locked in. This should prevent scenarios where an aggro-capped tank tries to taunt enemies off an ally and the taunt is completely ignored.
    • Player pets, including Mastermind pets ignore the cap. This change was made some time ago but is still in effect even with the revamp.
  • The goal of this change is to make it feel like there is no aggro cap at all, but still retain the desired game mechanics of a single tank being unable to maintain threat on or herd an unlimited number of foes.

 

Addressing the enemies looking stupid while their allies a short distance away are getting attacked.  That's GREAT!

All good except one thing:
 
RAISE THE AGGRO CAP A LITTLE BIT PLEASE!!!

 

Just 24 or 36 would do it. 

This give Tankers help in being able to protect the squishies on the team better from accidental flank aggro or even ambushes.  All we've been asking for is just enough to be able to absorb the aggro of one more enemy group.

Edited by agentx5
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3 hours ago, agentx5 said:

 

Addressing the enemies looking stupid while their allies a short distance away are getting attacked.  That's GREAT!

All good except one thing:
 
RAISE THE AGGRO CAP A LITTLE BIT PLEASE!!!

 

Just 24 or 36 would do it. 

This give Tankers help in being able to protect the squishies on the team better from accidental flank aggro or even ambushes.  All we've been asking for is just enough to be able to absorb the aggro of one more enemy group.

They are never going to do this because making the squishies safer under those circumstances wouldn't lead to better gameplay. Everything becomes very static in a fight if one character has perfect control over aggro, in the same way it would if one controller could perfectly control every mob. A static fight is fun for the character that gets to feel powerful but boring for everyone else.

 

All characters have tools for personal survivability, all are designed to be able to handle a bit of overflow aggro. This game is based around combat that is a bit more dynamic than the traditional mmo trinity and that is a big part of its appeal. Handling those moments when extra mobs turn up is when the team game really comes alive, otherwise it's just 'follow the tank, buff the tank, blow up mobs, rinse and repeat'.

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I often finding myself wishing the aggro cap were higher, but then I think about it a bit and decide that's not really a good idea. 

 

A full team of active, powerful, characters can still aggro huge numbers of mobs. But it takes coordination and skill. 

 

Now, the challenge for that team will be getting the right number of mobs aggro'd, and also into melee/AoE range, and attacking on the characters that can take it. I look forward to it.

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6 minutes ago, ivanhedgehog said:

I am wondering if people will find herding useful again.

I was already herding a lot; people generally like it, if they're not getting murdered by it. I think it will take a little more care and judgment so that a herding tank/brute doesn't herd when herding is bad for the rest of the team. 

Edited by Andreah
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Like I said elsewhere, it may be a little painful at first for the relative newbies I run with (Family SG), but it'll be a good lesson in positional awareness for them, too. I think they'll eventually adapt, and having goons that can't just ignore my Taunts will be nice.

 

FCM and I have already given them a few lessons on herding and line-of-sight, so they're familiar with the idea... This ought to be an excellent opportunity to start putting it into practice more often.  I suspect teams of old timers with strong builds and higher level characters won't do outside of challenge situations,  even with the aggro change, but we may well see more herding in lower-level play. 

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11 minutes ago, Coyotedancer said:

FCM and I have already given them a few lessons on herding and line-of-sight, so they're familiar with the idea... This ought to be an excellent opportunity to start putting it into practice more often.  I suspect teams of old timers with strong builds and higher level characters won't do outside of challenge situations,  even with the aggro change, but we may well see more herding in lower-level play. 


I'm neither here nor there WRT herding (unless it's being done by an incompetent or personally unpleasant tank), but the return of a more tactical playstyle (as opposed the current uncoordinated zerg) is certainly welcome.

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13 minutes ago, Gobbledegook said:

What happens if you use Fold space?

Fold space affects up to 16 targets and brings them into or at least close to, melee range. You might already have some mobs there. The ones over your cap will have to be dealt with somehow or they'll continue to use their ranged attacks on you, even from close in. As you fight that group, you'll probably end up with the 17 in closest attacking you in melee, and all the rest a little further away attacking you with ranged attacks. If you're with a team working together,  it might help quite a bit to get the distant "snipers" pulled in close to the fighting. They're probably already shooting at you.

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  • 2 weeks later

as a squishy that sounds very dangerous not the damage but holds everywhere think ill stick to 17 was not meant for tanking psi holds actualy that should be interresting now we may see melee get some hold stacking going on 2-3 spawns should be capable of mag 15-20 melee gonna need BF's to play like Rambo now

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37 minutes ago, Andreah said:

Has anyone on the Beta server played a Posi-1 or Posi-2 with characters "at-level" and evaluated how the aggro changes impact it? 

Yes, we did a three person 2x8 Posi. Didn't notice any issue due to the attack type or aggro changes.

 

We did have to pop super insp for the last fight against the duplicates. But it was a 2x8 with three players.

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On 7/15/2022 at 8:03 AM, ironjoe said:

So far I like this change as I have been testing it on tanks and non-tanks. Groups standing idly by never made sense and being able to taunt far groups while at cap is nice.

groups standing in my nuke and not taking any damage never made sense to me either. we get the worst of both worlds. more of them can attack us and we can only damage the same amount. a blasters defense is supposed to be "range". now they have less of it and they cant kill any faster.

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On 7/31/2022 at 1:57 PM, KaizenSoze said:

Yes, we did a three person 2x8 Posi. Didn't notice any issue due to the attack type or aggro changes.

 

We did have to pop super insp for the last fight against the duplicates. But it was a 2x8 with three players.

Those duplicates can wipe a group before the changes depending on what is in the group.

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26 minutes ago, Marshal_General said:

Those duplicates can wipe a group before the changes depending on what is in the group.

 

Nightmare to solo it at x8 with Rad Armor OR Rad Melee since the bosses spawn as Rad defenders and we get debuffed into oblivion in seconds. Defense or resistance does not matter. I've gone in with four small purples and four small oranges and still got creamed.

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Did a bunch of aggro testing today...  The aggro changes are an improvement, and a little worse. It's a little less ridiculous now that Enemies that are beyond the cap won't just stand there and ignore the threat. But they still *will not* pursue players that move out of range. The range is small, and you can be just around the corner, 15 feet away, and they won't pursue or attack.  Still a bit ridiculous, but better. 

 

The code that prevents the enemies beyond the cap from moving ends up reducing the amount of enemies that could be grouped than before this aggro change.  Before, minions and lieutenants would ignore the tank, but if their boss/lieutenant ran off to attack, they would follow. Now they don't follow. 

 

I was able to group a max of about 32 enemies within a mission, and that was with a LOT of work and under optimal circumstances (the enemy groups were very close to each other). This is a little more than 3 groups, more or less (and I was only able to do it once). But the amount of extra work that it took to group this many together will have the result of players not even bothering to try to make big enemy groups. In the amount of time it would take a tank to group this many, the team could have already mowed through about 9 groups. 

 

What I would like to see is enemies pursuing the threat without a restriction to move. Let the AI handle it. Being out of range is a good criteria for enemies to stop pursuit, as is amount of travel time from starting point.

 

Definitely keep the "holding aggro" cap. I might even recommend reducing the cap to something like 9. The point of allowing larger groups is: 1) increases the difficulty, 2) increases the risk to the team, 3) and allows "battle royals" to occur where one lone team is pit against an ARMY of enemies.  Personally, I love the huge battles and all the special effects. And yes, teammates die and struggle, but that's the whole point. It makes it fun! Battles with smaller groups just don't have the same grandeur.  

 

Anyway, my two cents. I do like the change, allowing enemies who are over the cap to attack from range. It makes the situation a little less ridiculous, and that's something that's always bugged me about the way the aggro cap was implemented. Keep up the good work! 🙂

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