Archive for July, 2015


What does stacking bring to ut duel?

nvz: YOU SHOULD NOT BE ABLE TO GET FULL STACK IN DUEL WHILE PICKING UP SHIELD BELT. NEVER. NEVER EVER EVER IN AN ARENA SHOOTER.

Why not. Seems fine if the whole system is designed that way. See CPMA and Quakeworld, they work fine. Problem with ut is the player with belt gets full stack, control of it and probably control of jacket, especially if they have recently killed the other player. If they other player has died or taken damage they get.. pads? Or they get to contest jacket/belt with no stack. If they want more stack they have to get the helmet. In essence they have to do more work for much less and spend more time. It is ass about. In addition allowing the out of control player to get the pads (currently) is generally ok because they are a small, one time only boost – you can still oneshot or almost one shot the player wearing them.

nvz: With that being said, I can still gain an armor stack by collecting 2 thighpads and a helmet, accumulating to 80 armor points.

UT3 stacking worked that way? Maybe just your wording makes it sound that way.

Anyway – I like the stacking idea but dislike the values, or dislike the values in traditional ut “only include one pickup of an armor per map”. For several reasons.

1) If stacking same items was allowed the pads instantly become more important to the out of control player, meaning the in control player can shift them into a pickup cycle easily. This means the out of control player has.. helmet. Not reasonable. Even average QL players will run mega + 2 armors easily. In control players will be able to run belt/jacket/pads. The outcome is possibly worse than the current setup – out of control has a helmet to stack on. 40 armor per ~minute from two helmet pickups? Even keeping the current values in ut4 duel and enabling stacking has the same problem – in control adds pads as an important item to deny, denies it and out of control is left with virtually nothing at all.

Adding a +health pickup outside of vials would possibly alleviate this to a degree as it would probably be more “important” than pads.

2) Because of ut strong weapon damage the small armor values suggested alone (20/30) offer marginal protection. This means that two pickups are required to be “combat ready” compared to current (single pad pickup) if you do not want to play “get weapon +attack” style of game. Where as the belt or jacket offer plenty enough to survive one shotting. A further nerf to out of control play.

3) Ties into 2. 80 armor for two spawns (30+20, 30) is paltry for the amount of time spent.

The values themselves are relatively unimportant to the armor system. The better way to look at is how long both players take to stack, how survivable players are, how the armors can be controlled and what each player can do at different points in time.

Simply enabling stacking will help to a degree.


Is tweaking armor values the only option to balance unreal tournament duel?

Dr.ToxicVenom: The better player will get the shield belt 9 times out of 10 anyway, so why not worry more about balance and leveling the playing field for the losing player?

Does anyone have a better solution to the issue with the shield belt being broken/overpowered?

Add meaningful out of control stacking allowing the out of control player to reduce stack differential without damage allowing them to then challenge for larger items. This has the added benefit of forcing the in control player to take the out of control players stack into consideration more rather than just playing belt+jacket. This spreads importance across more items, adds more options for both players and overall creates a more dynamic game – it allows a player to have as a similar amount of effective health without taking the belt, the cost being time spent doing it.

Alternatively disallow pickups of lower value armor items when stronger armors are equipped. This means a player cannot deny jacket while wearing full belt, they need to take damage or self damage to deny. This helps lower stack differential as the non-belt player either has access to the jacket or the belt player takes the jacket after damaging themselves. Belt spawn could also be lowered at the same time, forcing the belt player to revisit it more often. Sound strange? CPMA and Quakeworld use a similar system. The obvious reply to this is that it removes strategy/skill as the belted player cannot deny the jacket. I would argue that it creates a potentially deeper item game by virtue of having to play around the jacket, being aware of your opponents location and yours in relation to the jacket.

Those are just two ways you could give out of control players an easier time, which seems to be what you are after. All the traditional +damage methods that ut has always had still apply as well! 🙂


Required arena FPS viewing

Good non-ut game content. It would be awesome to link ut content but it does not exist. So use the below to get your imagination going for ut.


Twister talks about improving at quake from a non-aim, non-config, non-hardware perspective. It is a must watch for everyone interested at improving at games in general as the ideas can be applied everywhere.


Rapha v Cooler IEM 2010 post game analysis.


Fraze talks out loud
Fraze is a top Australian Quakelive player who records his thoughts while playing. The video below is not the first but has an intro that sets some ideas in place for the rest of the series. Clips with European players are better overall. Full playlist


DDK Quakeworld TDM
This is a long way from ut, however it is very insightful. More teamplay oriented. These are long, in places repetitive but worth watching if you have the time. Suggest starting with the guides for terms and understanding of the game but you could start with the game analysis and pick things up as you go. DDK also has a number of quakelive duel, CPMA TDM and CSGO analysis videos.

QW TDM playlist. Guides discussing in/out of control, map strong points and other interesting concepts.
QW 4v4 analysis playlist. Breakdown/overviews of official games


Does ut4 have difficult to understand and access weaponry?

TheWhiteDragon: But for hand holding I’d point to the shock. It’s not immediately apparent that the mechanic is there, but the mechanic itself is intuitive. The first time it gets used on you, you know how to use it.

100% disagree that it is intuitive.It does not need fixing or explanation but it doesn’t work the way you think it does. Something that is less complicated and intuitive is pickups – you need them to perform better and they respawn after a certain time period. Yet pie charts are being added to pickups? How is the shock more intuitive than pickups?!

Being in favor of pickup times BUT saying the shock is intuitive is ass about. Both or neither.

To get a better view we just need to look at unreal and by extension ut99.

I played unreal once at a LAN shortly after it was released. I followed its development for a while prior to release and recalled a mention of the combo functionality. We played unreal quite a bit that weekend but I was the only one using combos in any way. Obviously this is much too small of a sample for any sort of meaningful analysis..

Fast forward to ut99. In the au/nz scene there was a small sub-group of players who played unreal online. These players were aware of combos and utilised them heavily because they rocked. csm and suicidal and two names that stand out from early days.

Few players shock whored at the start – even being aware of it I stuck to flak and rockets initially before building proficiency and worked shock into my hpb repertoire. I proceeded to stomp FFAs for months with it. Very few picked it up. Or very few compared to how many I, and the other shock users killed with it.

Even getting towards late 2001 players did not heavily use it. There were some, and it was more than at the beginning for sure, but if its “intuitive when its used against you” there should have been large numbers of players using it. From the beginning.

It is not intuitive. It is cool but its not something you can just go “oh that guy is doing X, I will too”.

You are right about saw on pulse too – it is not intuitive. Likewise centerview with rifle in ut99. Likewise rightclick on the rocket launcher. I don’t think they should be changed.

These are “knowledge” things – look at items and heroes in lol or dota. Think of weapon use as items and character abilities in these games. There are many, many options in those games yet players there are not complaining. These are currently some of the most popular games today and a large part of the “skill” is item / matchup knowledge. ut is simple in comparison, 10 guns. In fact it could be said that ut should be made more complicated in a “knowledge” perspective since “knowing” something can quite often translate to more depth.. blah blah blah.

The impact secondary was addressed in the ut99 “manual”. It was still useless back then. While I am not a fan of the 2kx shield gun (in fact I hate it) a “parry” feature would be cool. However with weapon switch times the impact hammer is not really a good candidate for this.

While I agree that things should be somewhat self explanatory having things that are not instantly knowable is not a bad thing.

I think the line should be drawn like this – If a new player picks up a ut4 weapon can they kill other players with it in a manner in-line to other weapons in a given niche? If the answer is yes then it is fine.


Seamless portals in ue4 and map stagnation

diff`lx: I’ve been touting this for a while now. Seemless portals just make much more sense than the classic style portal. It discourages things like piston camping and makes maps much more fun rather than a hide-and-seek match.

Perfect example is Liandri from UT99. The map is otherwise a great 1v1 map but the portals allow for escapes and stalemates that make it too slow and boring. Turn the portals into seemless portals and suddenly belt is not so easy to lock down nor can it be so easily used as an escape.

The OP highlights the problem in this thread – just because a mechanic can be used poorly is not a reason to not include it. The inverse of this is pointing out problems in existing maps and saying they would be fixed by changing to portals.

The way your post is worded reads “liandri should be changed to portals because the teleport mechanic implementation is not very good”. Maps are key to good games and liandri did possibly have an issue with both sets of teleports. Is this a problem of teleports themselves (and thus they must be replaced with portals) or is it simply a problem with the maps implementation that could be solved with other changes, like changing teleport entrances/exits so they are not two way from the exact same spot? Or is the liandri situation one where seemless portals make more sense, which is cool as well.

Both should be available. Teleports exist in other games and are not a huge problem, they generally make maps better when used correctly. If there is a problem with teleports in ut it is their historically lacking implementation of facing upon exit. This should be looked at. If a xonotic style perfect portal cannot be done then a cludgy ut99 style one as an option would be nice. It would take more thought to include and mappers would not be able to use them for major areas, but the ability to add some interest where players leave LOS then reappear elsewhere could be interesting. See fractal and radikus in unreal.

To me the fact that liandri was never changed highlights a bigger problem than teleports. Gamers seem content to play on lackluster maps with lackluster rulesets. I abused that liandri portal in duel many times, not piston camping but two way teleports tend to be a bit of a problem..

For example it took an excessively long time for the dm6 pillar start spawn in quakelive to be removed. Now this is mainly because the creative was in ids hands rather than the communities and even if the opportunity was on the table the community would not have taken it. Or it would have been modified but then not picked up by servers/leagues.Given things like the blanket acceptance of ut99 maps for duel with minimal changes I would guess that it would be unlikely for a change like the dm6 spawn to be community driven.

If the teleports in Liandri were a problem then the map should have been fixed. This isn’t trying to imply the map was good or bad, or that epic suck because they never polished any maps after release, it is more a statement to the general attitude of gamers. We tend to play what we are given and rarely look further than what games ship with. Curse is another example of a map that kind of worked ok, was kept around for historical reasons but the crazy belt/pads pickup split left – beyond this a teleport to the upper room also makes a lot of sense.

Where am I going with this? I’m not really sure. Maps are important but player acceptance of maps that are obviously lacking plays a big role in shaping the game. It would be nice if there was some sort of push mechanism from a central repository so authors can update after the community has played their creations for a while. Testing only shows up so many problems – things like pillars spawn on dm6 or YA spawn on aero and some other average spawn pairs in quakelive can take a long time to show up, and even if play testers get them in testing they may not necessarily put two and two together and point it out.


Initial item spawns in unreal tournament

The start of game spawns have changed over the course of the ut franchise. Originally armors spawned at the start of the match. 2kx introduced delayed spawns (all items at the same time – 27 or 30 seconds) in an attempt to combat one player sweeping all major pickups (generally belt+jacket). ut4 has changed this and tied initial spawn to the items respawn time. This means the jacket/pads/helmet spawn at 30 seconds, the belt spawns 60 seconds, the amp, berserk, invisibility, redeemer and keg at 90 seconds (if included in the map or used for duel). Interestingly the boots are not on this delayed spawn as of this writing. This leaves weapons, health (packs + vials) and ammo for players to contest in the opening thirty seconds..

This delay is probably modifiable by map creators and in the future some may release maps without delayed pickups, or different pickup delays.


TDM ut4 weapon respawn times? Should they change?

Lynx: Looking at the video above with Codex, TDM respawn time definitely should be less than 30 seconds. Cause in that video ut4 weapon/play skill is pretty much completely substituted with map control skill.

This reads like you want it to be skewed towards weapon/movement/non pickup skill. Which is fine. However you are mistaken in thinking that lowering respawn to 20 seconds would change much of that aspect.

Changing it means control is more challenging – however it does not mean that a similar scenario cannot play out. It does not mean that the in control/out of control dynamic goes. In some ways it could buff control because it would need more than just

With 20 second respawns the in control player can go jacket -> shock -> sniper -> ripper -> flak the same way nuxx demonstrated. What happens is that after 20 seconds weapons start repopping. In the video the shock secondary fired at the jacket after picking up weapons is around 15 seconds after the jacket pickup. If 20 second respawn limits the distance the in control player can go and limits what they can and cannot do. In the “cycle” nuxx setup he would be forced to goto shock and possibly sniper again before jacket, giving up position at jacket. Alternatively they can give up weapons for armor.

Personally? I think a changes like this makes the game more interesting and dynamic, rather than playing connect the dots and remembering the order the players can do this once, then they need to take respawns into consideration for the next jacket spawn and round of pickups.

It is not a great solution to improving the duel game as the underlying armor/health setup is broken. It would not drive better player interaction. It would possibly allow more comeback opportunities (weapon pickups for out of control player) for sloppier control players, however for players that can work with 20/30 second items it would not change much. Overall it would be a sidegrade rather than a fix on the existing problems.


Are quake and ut weapons different balance wise?

Flikswich: between the “oomph” that ut guns are known for and the balance that a game like quake has.

No version of quake is super balanced really. From the outside looking in they are, but when you consider that ql duel is essentially played with three weapons, its hard to say that the others are “balanced” – At least not from a damage output or even usage perspective which is generally the catch call for balancing the rocket/flak in ut. For other gametypes with weaponstay turned off (TDM) shotgun and plasma are probably more interesting but when you look at ut gametypes and weaponstay it poses the same problem as ql duel, especially when mappers lean towards including all weapons. If the ql weapons were transplanted into ut gametypes with weaponstay on and added to levels the way they generally are in ut-land rl/lg/rail would be dominant still. Maybe a starting point before going down the arduous road of creating this weapon replacement mutator is to put forth what players see different weapons doing while keeping in mind how they were used in previous iterations. The biggest issue facing ut4 weapons is double up of fire modes and trying to make them unique. See: pulse pull. homing bio weirdness.

And even the ql community has cried blue murder over 7-7-7 lg for years, 80 dmg rail (previously 100)

quake2 has tiered setup which is interesting but hard to implement in ut as there are fans of every weapon and noone wants their fav gun relegated to the crap pile of the lower tier? Again this is not-balanced but it works well.

quakeworld has the most unbalanced weapons in the history of fps (maybe), no matter what players say about toxikk or ut4 rl, the qw rl blows it away. But this works really well. At least for TDM.

At the end of the day it comes down to what an individual player considers balanced.


UT4 Weapon guide and overview

Unreal Tournament 4 Weapon guide and overview

Unreal Tournament 4 weapons are: Impact hammer, Enforcer, Link gun, Bio rifle, Shock rifle, Mini gun/stinger, Rocket launcher, Flak Cannon.d

"Unreal

These are not my videos. Watch them all on the Zaccubus channel










ut4 weapon list

ut4 weapon DPS and stats

ut4 weapon switch time

ut4 weapon unlocks

ut4 marketplace weapons

ut4 custom weapon models

Expect the following in addition to the above
analysis, accuracy, achievements

binds, bobbing

commands

damage, 2015 2016 2017 2018

expert

finishes, fov, files, float

history, hand, hidden, hud color

id, inspector, in left hand, right hand

keys, keybinds, kill

list, levels

models, mods, market, movement

names

overview, on left side

position, prices

rarity, rewards

skins

tips, textures, trading, tiers

usage, upgrades

values, viewmodel,

youtube

zoom


Unreal Tournament 4 1v1 Impact of Switch Speed

Flikswich: That point is also where you can lose an entire full stack within the time taken to switch to a viable weapon and thus have 0 chance to actually do anything to someone who hid behind a corner and jumped you 😐

Not sure if you are over simplifying with the “hid behind a corner” example or not. So here we go 😀

With the ttk/damage output and amount of stack available this has always a possibility in ut. In all previous titles some weapons damage output was enough to “loose an entire stack*” to a player who lands one shot. With the ut armor system this needs to be at least partially possible as the out of control player can easily end up in a situation where they have nothing and the in control player has belt + jacket. This is how ut duel works and why max stack is quite often the topic of “how to balance duel” rather than more in depth discussion about armor/health. Its always been that way, even if posters do not realise why they are looking at max stack^. This damage output is also why pads alone are a poor substitute for jacket/belt and are of questionable use. The player with pads is still not able to take a fight without being one shot, and if they are not one shot they are so low they can be finished very easily.

By describing this as a function of weapon switch time rather than ttk you are missing the point. Even if a player was able to swap quickly – lets take the example all the way and say the game has instant switch like quakeworld, they will be unable to answer the attack before their stack is gone simply because of how high the burst potential is. Reaction time + aiming + other factors will render your stack mostly gone when you switch. Thus switch speed is not really relevant because the front load potential is so high that the player is stackless before they can react.

This is not to say that ut4 weapon switch time should be adjusted, I think it should. I just don’t think it will help in the situations you are describing much at all while preserving some semblance of out of control play. The main reason out of control works is because of the front load potential.

*Where stack is belt or jacket.

^Taking this into the quake realm we have a game where the player not in control has an option to build stack then take a fight. 100-150 armor (2ya+shards)