Archive for the ‘Forum Replies’ category


Fortnite Battle Royale Shields and armor system mechanics

 

The fact that you can fight against shielded players and win, only to realize you have no shields to pick up off them really hurts the need to be aggressive or engage with shielded players. Full post here

Because you cannot tell if players are shielded that statement makes little sense. You cannot know if your opponent has shields, or in the vast majority of situations you cannot know until you engage. The outliers here are when you are in a house and hear your opponent drinking the potion. Beyond that it cannot even be inferred – to play “safe” you need to assume that every player you engage has 200hp. You cannot engage shielded players thinking you will gain anything from them because you cannot know they are shielded until you hit them.

Having said all that you don’t “only to realize you have no shields to pick up” because noone was ever thinking that.. because we know how shields work. They don’t drop.

I don’t think the tell should change because the benefit is not that large.

A player can find a SCAR but be outplayed by an enemy with a basic shotgun for example.

I disagree. If you land opening damage you can negate 50-100 shield before your opponent can react, either negating the shield and having a fight from an even (yet likely still in your favor) or outright killing them.

A basic shotgun is quite strong in relation to the health pool provided you setup correctly. A better comparison would be a grey AR vs SCAR – the AR can still win but toe to toe one is simply worse.

It adds massive gaps in player health

It does not add “massive” gaps. A single 50shield is negated with ~one bullet. Two shields are negated by two or a headshot. You are now fighting on even footing. You need to open the fight in a manner that allows you to give initial damage and remove any health advantage they have. You need to not commit to fights you cannot back out of if you are unsure of their stack.

The “solution” to shield is landing opening damage in a manner that allows you to kill the other player. If you are trading shots you are either 1) wasting shield or 2) dying because they had more stack/better aim.

To me, the entire shield system is flawed and the one in PUBG is much more fair and balanced.

It is different. PUBG is not “fair” as such either. My understanding is that it is a flat damage reduction on incoming damage depending on location hit. The quick google I did has lvl1 30%, lvl2 40%, lvl3 55%. I don’t know how the durability plays in here with how many hits you can take. Also I don’t know how many “fights” a piece can last durability wise.

For BR economy having armor drop makes a degree of sense as the game progresses. Fortnite br weapons accumulate to the end of the game and shields do not. Simple.

However from the perspective of “fair” the current shield make more sense. An equipable item with durability to last a decent number of fights is inherently more powerful than a single use item that is stripped through damage. Even for a single fight PUBG style leads to more uneven fights.

Lets explore this for comparisons sake. We will use 50% as the absorption for the PUBG style item.

100/100 is 200 health 100 + 50% absorption is 200 health for a full health bar

Both players have the same “starting” health.

In a fight with the current system when 100 shield damage is dealt we know that this damage (likely) does not need to be given again in this particular engagement. This is because the chance of my opponent having another shield pot in their inventory is relatively low. Particularly in squads where shield tends to be spread around. After shield is gone it is not coming back.

Under the PUBG system my opponent can take 100 damage, be on 50 health (100*/.5) and then heal and then make use of their armor again, extending their health pool further over the course of a single engagement.

From the perspective of “fair” and “balanced” the current setup is “better” because it cannot extend the health pool further after healing. If a player shoots you and removes your armor it is done. It is no longer a concern. With PUBG beyond needing to take the unknown factor of the armor into account (taking fights that you can close after dealing opening damage) as well as taking these fights in a manner where the player does not have time to heal up is making things even less “fair”. It forces close range encounters even more than the current setupid.

I agree that dropping armor/shields of some variety would be great. If absorption is lowered to 40% the whole shield would not be used on 100 health, leaving some in the pool. This would also weaken players health pool when full – 100/100@40% is ~170 health with ~30 shield dropped. This would have other interesting side effects like making shields that are used on lower health not impacting the players health as much. 50/50 would drop around 15 shield. Using shields on low health would not grant +100.

This would still suffer from bandaging in fight (to add more health to use shield) but it would not be as open ended as what PUBG durability seems to offer.


ut4 map feedback counter feedback dm-echo

KmKz; Map feedback for DM-Echo! [url]https://youtu.be/l_JYtgeMoKM[/url]

The point on the 50a = dangerous area seems good since the smaller armors should be for the out of control player so you don’t want it to be too challenging for them. However the danger also applies to the in control player as well wanting to deny it. If the in control player decides they don’t want to risk belt or 100stack for the 50a denial then that seems like a choice they can make – if the area is as dangerous as you say then it should be taken into account rather than blindly jumping in. If the 50a is left up the out of control player you can time your pickup when your opponent is on the other side of the ut4 map getting belt or 100a. If the in control player decides they can take the 50a they are putting themself in the same risky secnario the out of control player would be putting themselves in and leaving themself open to heavy destacking.

Could it be said that leaving it dangerous leads to less denial, or more time spend leading up to denial by the in control player (checking corners and the general area instead of just going in) which in turn frees up the out of control players time? The alternative to not checking in this manner is taking unnecessary damage and losing control. Having to weigh things up before committing is not a bad thing.. if anything it is a great thing.

Why move the shock? That area is quite strong for ooc – quick shock + 50a (albeit dangerous), chokey fast approach from mid/belt (narrow door above lift). Defensible spot high near the health pack. On top of this because shock is quite stonk and out of the way of belt/100a/other weapons the player in control will need more time spend in order to travel to obtain it (once), to deny (more than once) or for fast ammo (more than once). By putting it in the box in the middle of the map you take away a deal of strength from what out of control can exert in what is essentially “their” part of the map – in fact it denudes that whole side of the map of strong weapons – rock, flak, shock, sniper are in a line down the center/other side of the map.

Your primary argument against the current shock location seems to be that the shock can be picked up and then used on the player going for 50a – this seems like a very small “problem” that is solved by picking it up prior to heading to 50a. None of the reasons given for the shock being in a “bad” location were overly compelling.

It makes sense to try to get players through that middle room more because you correctly point out that it is a dead zone, while also pulling the in control player away from the top pipes, which do indeed seem over the top for visuals/access. Moving the vials does not solve this top pipe strength problem as players can take them before belt so they are gone when leaving the area, or simply not take them at all and give no audio queue. Rather than moving shock how about putting double shock ammo (if there are two packs elsewhere on the map) in the center – and possibly pulling the nearby exterior health pack(s) inside as well. This way the in control player wants to travel through there to get ammo or wants to get health – quite strong need for this with 50% absorption. 

I agree with changing acid -> water, simply because the player who falls down ends up in a rather bad position. However if you remove the damage you open up a few unsavory gameplay options that are probably best left alone, at least imo. The player that falls down can hug the wall and make the “inside” player come to them. They can simply stay in the water, hidden down the drop and make the inside player chase them. Obv they are in a bad location but they don’t need to get out straight away – they don’t have to take the ramp or the bounce pad as both are more dangerous than just sitting. They can whittle down time in what would be a boring cat and mouse scenario. Secondly this can be extrapolated out to a player wanting to waste time towards the end of a game and run down the clock – making the hunting player “check” all the way around the edge for a player hiding is bland and uninteresting. You could stay down near the 50a, hidden while waiting for it to spawn.

I am all for making players spend time doing things (previously mentioned checking before taking 50a) but in a reasonable way, not by putting a hidey spot like the water would create. The damage stops this occurring.

If it was my map I would add the railings you guys requested, add some more pipes/stuff to block players and then make the acid gib players that fall outside.


OSP and competitive mods in quake and ut

Gnalvl; Take CPMA in the Quake community for example… When Quake 3 hit, many diehards felt that it’d been too casualized and that too many key aspects of QW and Q2 had been discarded, so a group of them developed a consensus on how to improve Q3 and executed those changes as a mod.

Granted, CPMA did start out as a small subsection of the larger Q3 community, but at least it was there for the people who wanted those changes,

OSP borrowed CPMA’s ruleset wholesale and popularized a ton of its changes. UTComp’s key ideas like brightskins and hitsounds came straight from CPMA.

If OSP borrowed anything it was interface/quality of life changes from CPMA. None of the movement, armor  or weapon changes were adopted by base OSP. None of the actual features you would consider the “game” of CPMA was taken for OSP – or if movement/weapon/armor/etc changes were taken as a voteable option in OSP, they took a back seat to brightskins, improved HUD options, stats, voting, ready up, minor visual/clutter options, spawn algo(?), netcode(?), etc for duel or tdm – these were the real reasons people used OSP in vq3. If the game changes were included in OSP it could almost be said that this was an attempt to expose CPMA movement/weapons/etc on a wider player base via integration of the base CPMA game in OSP. Which was clever as OSP had a much larger uptake. So players+severs that had OSP also had the core CPMA gameplay but no additional content – maps primarily?

The casualised q3 aspect was primarily related to speed and perhaps some of the movement options in q2. Not brightskins, ability to vote or the options that OSP was used for in vq3 for duel or TDM.

OSP was used up to ESWC 2004 and CPMA was used in at ESWC in 2005, however it was not for CPMA gameplay, rather the aforementioned “extras” that improved the game while not really changing the game overly much from the “casualised” perspective. Why was it used here? Was OSP ever updated at this point while CPMA had people working on it still? Was it purely lack of support from the OSP camp or ease of use that finally got CPMA onto servers for vq3? By the time CPMA was replacing OSP (even as just a competitive mod) it was too late, the game was essentially dead. It could be said that similar things happened in ut99 with newnet and faster weapon switch.

The bold options were available in the two older quake titles, either via competitive mods or some recolouring skins that were not cheat protected at the time. The only thing off the cuff I can think of that these mods bought that had not been done previously was hitsounds. Saying that these are features of CPMA is ignoring 3+ years of competitive/server control mods that came before it in the older quake games.

If CPMA created a divide it was not a minor one, as some of the better later day q3 duelers were original CPMA players. Daler and Fox come to mind. Did people play CPMA? Sure, some. A small community. I bet more than ut4.

​​​​​​​[QUOTE=’Gnalvl;n391398′] which is more than we can say for a lot of the requested changes in the UT community which either never got implemented at all or if they did, never made it on any servers.[/QUOTE]

I agree with your general sentiment about ut players and not accepting anything non-epic. The base ut99 maps had problems but could have been “fixed”, more easily than the q3 maps as we could edit them. They were never addressed. For example curse had issues in duel because belt vs pads yet it was never addressed and while it was somewhat popular early on one of the reasons it lost popularity was surely because of the perceived “imbalance” between control/out of control. Map authors were even aware of this as the 1on1 maps were much better setup in this regard, they were received by the community as better and a big part of that was the item balance. Yet they were still not played.

You are being disingenuous pitching CPMA as the savior and an example of mass uptake – when its use was not due to the gameplay changes in CPMA but its ability to be a competitive mod for quake 3. This would be akin to utcomp implementing large movement changes alongside its base options, then saying that uptake on the movement changes was good because utcomp uptake was good – while ignoring the fact that noone really used the movement changes and just used it for voting/brightskins/hitsounds/etc.


Unreal Tournament duel and armor after a year

-AEnubis- Maybe he’d like to chime in on this hijack, or reference another thread already on the subject.

There are two aspects to armor. Well more than two, but two I find interesting about. The first is the resource dynamic between in/out of control and how it plays out, I covered this heavily in that “post” about quake/ut. It is semi related to the second point.

 

The other aspect, which I am more interested after coming back from overwatch is how armor drives players to fight in duel – this is even more lacking in ut compare to quake. This is a mixture of stack self vs deny opponent and relative item sizes determining if pickups are worth contesting.

 

The current system “caps out” players needing to interact very quickly (yet not quickly enough), leading to situations where one player has 1xx/100a and the other has 1xx/150a. If scores are close the question I ask at that point is 1) does the out of control player need the extra 50 from the belt, enough to contest and potentially “waste” the time they spent building to 100a, 2) If the in control player is ahead do they need to pressure the out of control player knowing they have 1xx/100a? The stack difference is close, they have little to gain if they are already ahead, would they not be better off biding their time and resources and not wasting them?


To illustrate this the fight right here did not need to occur – Fjaru obv made a mistake and did not realise his opponent had not taken the 100a already, however his opponent already had 100a (capped out) meaning he had no benefit to taking the armor and does not need to be there at all. He has not damage fjaru since he took the belt. In this situation the next big ticket item that is coming up is the belt, denial for fjaru and stacking for his opponent (provided no damage is take in the interim). This is the only large item both players can stack on.

 

This secnario occurred in the old system as well – if the out of control player obtained the 100a the requirement to fight for it was gone until either player took damage. The in control player could swap attention to the 50a as this is the only source of stacking for the previously out of control player. This may sound nit picky, but the armor that drives players to fight stops making players fight very quickly in ut. You can still try to kill your opponent “for fun”, but the resource requirement is no longer there. Players are not going to fight for the small spattering of vials around the map, nor will they be predictable enough to setup for fights on these vials. This is where the single, large, pickup that is the mega comes in. The belt is attempting to replace it by being the only armor “overheal” available but by itself it is too small and not significant enough to risk stack for.

 

The current system is an improvement from the perspective of “lets play some ut for fun” or for out the out of control player. Players can stack more and players can contest more. At a lower level it is fine, but when you need to toss up the consequence of committing to a fight (ignoring the current abomination that is in fight movement), weapon damage and stack difference being ~50 it really begs the question of why you should commit. This leads to more defensive play in an attempt to conserve resources that have taken time to accumulate.

 

To be honest it has been interesting to test but needs to be put to bed. Armorware is not the solution either, but it might be an improvement over the current epic setup.

At this point you might be thinking “well ut has seemingly worked well in the past” to which I would straight up say it has not worked from this perspective of players needing to fight. Watching competitive games players contest the 100a at :30, die, then go on to contest the belt at :00 without stacking at all – this is just poor play and giving away points. This was very common – yet players could trade off the belt for the 100a and be on a more even footing. HOWEVER the next point of conflict is still the next belt spawn. 30-60 seconds away. I believe part of the problem is the small community ithat continues to push memes like “must always contest belt” and similar things. Must always run belt+100a ad infinium regadless of if I or my opponent need it, potentially taking damage for no reason. If UT were large this would fall to the way side and the problems with the armor would become more readily apparent.  edit: After posting realised that the older titles with belt+100a dynamic and control is why this did not occur as much in the past.

I use quake as a comparison only because it is convenient. This could be reworded as “ut does not foster an environment that causes players to fight”. Or something. I don’t want ut to become quake and I don’t think transplanting ql armor into ut has worked.

 

This forum and the ut community in general seems obsessed with tweaking a few values (usually in terms of limiting in control players stack while also keeping them buff enough to warrant getting items ), thinking it will “fix” armor. Ut armor is flawed from the perspective of out of control play as well why players fight. The fix is actually reasonably simple – maps need more resources players care about. In the old system the 50a was not super important to deny because alone it could never amount to more than +50.

 

The important variables – the spawn times, the number of items and the number of resources that cause fights (armor in ut vs armor/mega in quake) are what need to be tweaked. This does not specifically mean a mega needs to be added.

 

One final aspect that needs to be put to bed is armor decay. This does not drive conflict – the in control player in quake will cap out their armor at 200 and need +25 every 25 seconds in order to keep this high. Armor decay is more time limiting to the out of control player stacking on a single 50a. In this scenario they can stack to 150a in three spawns with no penalty, however if they want to go to 200 they need to spend the next two spawns 150-25, 125+50, 175+50 to obtain it.

The flip side is that decay for mega makes a degree of sense. It is a single item on a longer spawn.

Gnalvl Yeah a lot of Quake maps have 2 YA because during their initial design in Q3 there was no GA, and then when GA was eventually added in CPMA and QL, no one bothered to change the maps. It’s sorta lazy but in worked out for the better in many cases.

Overall newer, quake 3/live duel maps have more resources available than older q3 maps. If you compare t4 (2*YA, 2min mega, a few +5 bubbles, long spawn rail), t2 (2*YA.. no mega.  I believe the only ql duel map missing it), dm6 (1*RA 1*YA 35s mega, +25 shards).

Of course there were older, more heavily stacked maps (dm13, ztn, even areo in the closing years of q3) but recognising this simply lends weight to the case that the earlier, lighter loaded maps were not that great. Both were played, tested and one fell away.

The popularity of dm6 took much longer to wane and there were many discussions on esr about how to “fix” the map. iD revamped it in 2013 with an intel branded sponsor version for qcon – which essentially ignored most of the feedback beyond “add another armor”. A green was added to the main atrium, not really aiding the ooc player in a meaningful way because it was in a “dangerous” location.

Sinister, cure, toxicity, aero, battleforged, hektik all sport significantly much more resources than the old maps. They also have a varying array of pickups – different numbers of YA/GA/shards/+5hp. At most the difference between ut maps is omitting a pickup but until the 20s weapon respawn you could not even leave out a weapon because maps needed seven pickups otherwise full scale denial became too easy.

So.. how would I fix ut duel?

1. Roll back to the “old” setup with slotted items, no self stacking. Pads, vest, belt. Maybe helmet.

  1. Max at 150 of “whatever”.
  2. Change vest to 75a and pads to 75a.
  3. Change belt spawn to 40s.
  4. Remove delayed spawns, this is problematic old school solution that causes more control problems.

Changing both items to 75a means the in control player needs to run all three pickups for full denial. It also means they need to be aware of their opponents stack and specifically which items they have taken in order to know what has been denied. It gives more options to out of control play, it ties up much more time for the in control player and buffs a single pickup (75a vs 50a), making things potentially slightly easier for them.

This is a unique aspect of ut armor, the least talked about aspect, and probably the most interesting from the perspective of ut dna in the game. It should be looked at and used to create something interesting.

The short version :

In reality this rarely, if ever occurred because the in control player just continued playing like an automaton, picking up belt+100a even after the 100a has been taken (and no damage dealt) by the out of control player.

For me this is the starting place to build something. Perhaps a mega could be added. Perhaps +50 mega, meaning two pickups are required. Perhaps something is done with ammo. 

One thing is for sure, the current setup is lacking for duel.


Improving at ut4 and fps games in general

PayBack; Some people are just born with faster reflexes, better eye sight or a higher drive to improve or excel.

These are factors but the fact you think major differences come down to reflexes or eye sight show how little you actually understand improving at gaming.

Straight up you should not be involved in developing the game if your base assumptions for majority of players being better/worse is “reflexes and eyesight”. This is completely wrong. For the sake of simplicity lets roll “aiming ability” into reflexes and assume that it is a natural “skill” that some players have and others do not have. Makes sense right?

This is completely wrong and there are many ways to improve, even if you never work on you aim. In fact the breadth of options for improving in arena fps games is one of their major appeals to myself personally. Many of the changes in ut over the years push more and more requirements on to aiming, which is sad because it makes for a flatter experience.

In Paybacks defence if he has not been involved in any other gaming communities for the past decade+ he is unlikely to have seen any “good” content relating to this. UT ideas seem to have stagnated in 2002.

So if your entire background is unreal tournament and you have never consumed “how to improve” media from other franchises…. well then this is sort of understandable. ut seems to be a microcosm stuck in 2002, permeated by the same ideas as 15 years ago. If you compare the progression in counterstrike or even quake content it is easy to see how stagnant ut is. Look at zaccs tutorials and then compare this to what is available for cs, quake, overwatch. The difference is huge. ut tutorials are literally “click and weapon does THIS”.

You can improve but you first need to break away from the concept of “my aim is my aim and I will never improve it”. This goes doubly for ut4 duel.


Do arenafps have classes?

PayBack; I really think Epic and this community need to take a good hard look at what makes a successful game in todays market. Quake added classes, for better or worse, I think its fair to say that giving players variety in their characters and play style is a very important piece of modern day video games. People want a tailored experience, they want to use characters and weapons that best suit their play style and needs. Back in the late 90s early 2000s, video games were all about skill.

Your argument is basically “well other franchises do it so ut should as well”. ut should do it if it creates a better game, not just because – perhaps in the case of flagrun classes make sense.

arenafps have “classes” and these are often harder counters than similar setups in class based games. Players have always had the ability to have variety in play style in arena shooters, quite often in a wider range than similar class based games. The main difference is that you do not spawn with the “class”, you need to pick it up AND you have access to other classes provided you spend time picking up those other weapons.

If you have sniper you are able to play in a way that a player without sniper can basically not counter without obtaining one of their own. This is a super hard counter.

If you have a close range weapon the same applies. In ut4 this somewhat comes undone because there are so many close range weapons.

A big part of the “problem” is that players do not “see” this as classes, while the sniper example, at least in ut, basically hard counters everything at long range. This is why loadouts in quakelive were not a huge “problem”. Players could not get rockets/lg/rail out of the gate and could only select one of the holy trinity. This meant they were only maximum effective at one range.

If we take this example to CTF and item layout we can change things in the following manner. Using the sniper as an example.

1) Put the sniper on the way to the enemy flag, where players will always go when attacking. The sniper is now a “fast” weapon as you can pick it up on the way to the enemy base without spending any time. The location of the shock on ctf-outside would be an example of this.

2) Put the sniper out of the way, possibly even away from spawn points. The sniper is now a “slow” weapon and if players wish to use it they must take time to obtain it, cutting into their attacking time. An example here would be placing the sniper up near the top rockets on ctf-outside, possibly extending the corridor further, while making sure to remove any spawns around here. See the image below, if the rifle was off frame where the green arrow is pointing.

Obviously this is not the same as having fast/slow characters like teamfortress does, however it does impact the game. If players need to spend X seconds each life obtaining a weapon rather than going straight for the enemy base, this will heavily cut into the amount of time they have to attack over the course of a game. This is also quite limited in ut4 because all many of the weapons fulfill the same role.

And yet if mappers did this with popular weapons, for example the ctf-outside example, it would be criticized by the player population for odd placement. “Sniper is too far away from the common thoroughfares” would probably be feedback.

The more skill you had the better you were at the game.

Epic should use gathered stats to give players a class(ification). If a player uses more sniper they are labelled that way. If a player dodges significantly more than average at their skill level they given another title. And so on. If the skill ceiling is high, and broad enough players themselves become “classes” based on how they play. The same way a player has a reputation for using shock, rockets, superior movement, timing, etc but everyone will get a “class” rather than a handful of the best players. On the flip side qualities that are low, like average speed, top speed, distance traveled could be taken into account and used to describe the player. If you aim well, but never time or pickup health packs you get a particular title that is less than flattering.

For example, when I was playing I had super high 100a/50a pickups compared to belt pickups compared to everyone I played, even when looking through other players from other regions.

This is not just to classify a player, but to also make them feel unique without giving them ability points to distribute.

[QUOTE=’PayBack;n387084′]
 I dont want character progression that unlocks special abilities, just something to give a player a tiny little edge and something to work for. Maybe one player builds a character with 5% further dodge, this allows him to more easily make a trick jump that a non leveled player would have a more difficult time with. Those are the tiny leveling schemes im talking about. Not some major special ability unlock.[/QUOTE]

Movement should be designed so it is deep enough for differences between players to manifest themselves naturally. UT movement may not allow for enough differentiation between players and if that is the case then perhaps that would be excellent to look at.

Because quake movement uses mouse movement it tends to differentiate player skill much better. imo anyway.


The future of unreal tournament

Why does this game keep getting horribly worse with every update?

Because ut until now (this version/this versions development) has been an arena fps and Epic are now creating an “arena fps inspired shooter”, which sounds something blizzard would have said about overwatch. Epic are no longer making Unreal Tournament because they are no longer making an arena fps.

Our goal is for Blitz to become the primary 5v5 game mode for Unreal Tournament. We want to retain some of the core ideas of what make Arena Shooters fun, while at the same time modernizing aspects of the game that may be stuck in “legacy land” for no particularly strong reason. Source

So it has come to the point where they are no longer making ut. They are making a game that is potentially inspired by ut but is not an arena fps. Sounds a bit like this. If Epic had stated that they want to retain the arena fps core and modernise other aspects that would have been fine, however they want to keep some core ideas that make arena shooters fun. An example from overwatch. Widowmaker has a grapple, which is obviously inspired by quake 2 CTF and kept the core “idea” of the grapple. The grapple in q2 is fun and it is retained in a manner that makes it fun still, while essentially making it nothing like grapple in q2 at all. Given the hardon epic have for ow this is a direction that is reasonable to expect. The new LG is (or was) an almost direct rip of the ana gun – which is sad because it is such a garbage and uninspired weapon.

Unreal Tournament is an arena shooter, if these aspects are removed it is no longer unreal tournament. Things that make a game an arena shooter in my mind are – weapons, movement, lack of classes, fast respawns and pickups. These do not always apply, as CA/TAM have rounds and no pickups yet would not make a game not-arena fps. Weapons is a fairly broad concept but if you compare ut/quake to cs/cod one gets the point fairly quickly.

Maybe Epic are confused as to what constitutes an arenafps – perhaps Sid purely thinks of arenafps = gametype. You know.. there is an arena, there are pickups, etc. Deathmatch. If that is the case.. fine, but at the same time it is difficult to imagine Epic making that particular “mistake”.

The truth is they are making changes to core arenafps principals in order to make flagrun “better”. By the time they are finished the only thing ut about the new ut will be the name. It is not overly surprising that epic have gone the overwatch way. Their history is riddled with changes and copying other franchises without understanding – and luck. The Unreal franchise started as a magic carpet clone which then went on to become an FPS, probably due to iDs success with doom. From here there are amazing choices like shipping ut99 on “hardcore” instead of “normal” – basically a % modifier to many aspects of the game. It is hard to imagine that the game was designed with this in mind – create base game, apply across the board %s to make things faster and you are done? Is that next level design or straight up butchery. Likewise fast switch in 2k3, obviously taken from q3 with no understanding turned the game into shock primary -> lg -> shock primary -> lg, simply because the weapon switch negated the reload. This was addressed in 2k4, however why it was implemented in the first place boggles the mind – Epic don’t understand and given the complete lack of direction in the ut4 project this is unlikely to have changed.

Look at history.

Unreal – trash multiplayer, abysmal map list.
UT99 – decent multiplayer which is essentially a “fixed” version of Unreal with new gametypes
2k3 – trash multiplayer, abysmal map list.
2k4 – decent, the issues from 2k3 are addressed and the game is better. This is also because of more maps.
UT3 – trash multiplayer

UT3 never had a followup title. Epic iterated on their first two “titles” by releasing, polishing and re-releasing. This is not to say

Work on the future of Unreal Tournament begins today, and we’re happy to announce that we’re going to do this together, with you.

Work on a game that is called Unreal Tournament started that day. Epic have announced that it is no longer an arena fps so it is no longer ut.


Wall ride with lucio!

ProfessorGanymede: Did you notice how much damage I took while I was wallriding?

It is a good example of where to wallride – that tall, narrow corridor thing with access from up the wall puts you above players line of sight from the get go and obscures you once you are there. You have another example on nepal and while you did not take damage (or took minimal) in that video either you were “open” to people shooting you from anywhere inside the main room. You were basically exposed to everyone entering the room.

Around 1 minute you are above the point on the Nepal video. You say you don’t shoot because you don’t want to draw attention (in more words) but if players really looked you would die.

Now, currently it might be legit to play in this manner as players across the board seem to not notice lucios behavior. This would either be because few players wall ride well or because the players heavy, obvious, wallriding works against are straight up unobservant. Personally I think that the playerbase has not matured to the point where they are comfortable with more vertical play and more specifically they are not used to a character like lucio being up on the wall. Players coming from modern fps can aim but do not cope with this sort of thing. A good parallel here is Pharah. Even at low-mid 60s I often had mccrees that did not shoot the enemy pharah. This does not make pharah a good pick (end of season 1 meta), it simply means players who should shoot you might not.

This smacks of gambling.

I play with some older arena fps players and they do not struggle with lucio wall riding. “Lucio wall riding” *lucio proceeds to die*. You would have been dead in that nepal video very quickly unless the flags hide you in some way.

Compared wall riding to Lucio trying to dodge. Lucio with passive speed + adad spam is very hard to hit. His hitbox is small. His animations are pretty crazy. Making him straight up hard to track. Wall riding is almost identical to running in a straight line*, just not on the ground, which is why it is currently decent. Players can easily track an enemy running straight – thus players can track a lucio wall riding. They just don’t do it. This is similar to terrible target selection most players exhibit.

Now the question that really should be asked is “Am I harder to hit when I wall ride compared to when I adad spam with passive speed” and the answer should be obvious. The latter makes you harder to hit in most situations where as the former makes you inconspicuous to some players but much easier to shoot for ones that do see you. Going back to the gambling this is the point where you have to make your own call as to which to use. As the game matures I think we will see blatant out in the open wall riding reduce as lucio will just die when he does it.

If you can LOS most of the enemy by using wall ride, then excellent. This video is a great example of this behavior. The Nepal video in my mind is not

*If not worse because at least with running in a straight line you can drop straight into evasive action instantly rather than needing to drop (also easy to track) until you hit the floor.


And if you are on the ground strafing, good players WILL be able to hit you. ESPECIALLY hit scan characters like Mcree, Widow, and Tracer.

Moving in a predictable, straight line on a wall. Or even worse, stopping the wallride to bounce up the wall. Or dropping off the wall and falling a significant distance.

vs

Moving back and forth rapidly perpendicular to your opponents aim with passive speed.

The only way the latter does not work against those characters for the smaller hitbox characters is if the netcode is wildly broken. They will still hit you, however they will hit you at a significantly reduced % compared to walking in a straight line across a wall.

the enemy team did have a Tracer that was wrecking my team.

This is in hind sight after your positioning was pointed out. This sort of thing should be in the video. “I am here because the tracer can’t get me”.

There is no tracer in the video I linked.

But there are plenty of situations where it is more useful than strafing on the ground, making yourself easy pickings for hitscan characters.

When you are wall riding you are slower, more predictable and easier to shoot compared to when you strafe spam with passive speed. If you can position youself using wall ride to LOS these characters then that is superior to fast adad.. otherwise no.

I even agree that with the current player base wallriding like 1:00 in your nepal video is probably fine and you won’t get picked off. However flat out stating that wall riding makes you harder to hit is bollocks. It makes you easier to hit unless you can LOS your opponents using it. It doesn’t matter that you are up on the wall unless the wall you are on heavily effects your opponents LOS to you. Perhaps a series showing parts of maps like the kings row stairs would be useful to support this piece.

This is similar to players jumping when in fights to try to throw off their opponents aim. Does it? Yes. Does it as much as adad with passive speed? No. Because there are times when you are moving in a much more predictable manner.


Here is a relevant anecdote from another game I play(ed). During UT4 development Epic added a “sprint” feature. This is a passive that kicks in after a player runs forward for.. 3 seconds. The player speeds up until they stop running or jump or turn too sharply. In UT land players have the ability to dodge by double tapping their strafe keys, resulting in a quick movement left/right/forward/back. This is typically chained together for faster forward movement and has been a staple of the series since unreal1. Even though sprint is faster than chained dodges noone has ever specifically used sprint to move faster because the player is too predictable/easily tracked. The edge cases, where sprint is useful is not because it is faster but because it is quieter than dodging. Once again we see that running in a straight, predictable line is a bad idea.

Like wise when players are trying to dodge in quakelive they generally stay grounded so they can adad – jumping, even on the flat, increases your predictability.

I don’t know what your gaming background is but if it is modern fps like cs, cod and bf I fully understand why you would be skeptical of this idea of grounded strafing and unless someone comes forward with a rebuttal or a reason why (outside of “this is not the case”) then it will stand.

The one thing that could change this is the netcode.

I don’t even feel you can’t even really comment on how effective this is because.. you do not do it.


UT4 Bright Skins and Player Visibility

NATO_chrisjm: The community is enormously fractured, and while things like visibility are universal the views on possible solutions are wide. It doesn’t help when the devs make a firm statement such as ‘we don’t want brightskins’ a chunk of the community yell at them that it’s going to be a failure if it’s not included. Feels like there’s a lot of distrust coming from the community right now, which doesn’t encourage the devs to open up.

Overall a well thought out and put together post.

Player visibility is one of the key points epic could have handled better during Unreal Tournament 4 development. There was a lot of noise about difficult to see players and Epic repeatedly stated that they did not want to go the neon bright bright skins route and would solve the “problem” using other methods. This seemed acceptable for many players and the ones it was not fine for was more from a “we don’t trust you or your track record*” rather than “that is impossible” point of view. Of course there was a minority (often vocal) that refused to accept that there was any other way to do it, but lets ignore them. Player vis was an aspect where epic could have easily won points from the community by actually implementing something, even to the point of pushing it a little far (to win supporters) and dialing it back at a later date. They did open up about this point.

However nothing was done. Then some community members created threads comparing methods of player highlighting – followed by bright skin mutators (not a problem) and then Epic finally pushed something useful in the last few builds. This is not to say that the community brightskins spurred Epic to put their own solution in place. Are the new Epic skins perfect? No. Is it good enough for shells? Probably, they are a huge improvement on shells on a map like chill. Are they good enough for meshed maps? Probably not. But it is better than one of the previous Epic visibility changes that was along the lines of “slightly changed XYZ by 1.27% to improve player visibility”. When they make changes to something that is essentially zero change it is hard to think they will implement anything… or approach it at such a slow, teeth pulling rate.

But they have only implemented changes recently. They should have done it months ago.

This is different to weapons being considered OP by large swathes of the community – you could create a game with a weapon that is ridiculous and if that is epics vision then, whatever. You could also create a game where all the players are black. But to straight up state that they want to address a problem in a specific way then do nothing? Or the equivalent of nothing (slightly changed XYZ in a single build). It is understood they are a small team but it was/is a fairly large point that they specifically commented on – and their track record has been poor on this aspect of the game from 2k3 onwards. So if they were planning something it would be important to show us rather than just say “Yeah we don’t like bright skins but you will have to deal with it until we get around to doing something”.

Maybe points from the community don’t matter, or whatever, but this is not an aspect like crap mouse input that is difficult to track down, diagnose and fix, if that is even possible as it may be the underlying engine that they lack control over.

*This was reasonable and further highlights why this would have been a good place for epic to start winning the support of the community. If the current red/blue visibility was in game.. 12 months? 6 months? ago when this was a hot topic it would potentially have gotten more people on side.

Unreal Tournament Visibility Track Record

So for new comers, players that never paid attention to this or just curious bystanders some explanation may be in order. It was easy to see players in ut99. It was very difficult to see players in the base game of 2k3, so epic implemented shoulder mounted lights – horrible sprites that sort of solved the problem. utcomp came along and added glowstick style bright skins as well as force model which was accepted by the competitive community. 2k4 came around and epic put their own version of bright skins in, which was probably acceptable, but once again no force model (from memory).

The whole visibility saga was replayed in ut3 in a similar manner.

Not sure this is 100% how it played out but it is roughly there. Not learning from past experience is most certainly one of Epics more annoying traits.


Showdown level design ammo considerations

NATO_chrisjm;

  1. Keep ammo more in flow than out of it. Unlike weapons where you’d choose to go to a particular area of the map you’re unlikely to do so for ammo alone; thus pickup up ammo should only require small diversions and be low risk.
  2. Spread it evenly across the map, and in theory useful to particular weapon routes.
  3. Keep ammo numbers equal to avoid biasing one weapon.

Some counter points. I understand this is primarly coming from designing dm maps (and I disagree in part there, ammo can be used differently) but needs additional thought for showdown.

1) Alternatively you can force a player to spend more time obtaining ammo at the expense of not being able to do something else. Get armor, pressure enemy team, cover team mates, get other weapons etc.

Goes without saying this is during the early pickup phase of showdown. Scavenging ammo later is different and not what we are aiming for here – and not what is achieved with spread out ammo in “the flow”.

Players must gamble on leaving ammo up and pushing for other weapons/pickups at the expense of another player potentially picking the ammo up. If ammo is always in the flow players will simply pick everything up they can as they travel from A to B. This is not to say ammo should be wildly out of the way but rather (for example) the ammo cache near the pad side mini lift on ASDF. It is out of the flow.

ammo on dm-asdf

Given how the gametype works I disagree that players are “unlikely” to make diversions for ammo. Single pickups may not draw players the way larger pickups do early game but should not be given away for free* by placing them directly in player movement paths. Two ammo packs can make a larger contribution mid-late game compared to the very limited amp pickup early game. Maybe even one ammo pack.

* The currency is time and this is severely limited in showdown to player opening moves.

2) Grouping up ammo buffs the importance of 1), to the point of it possibly adding another weapon/powerup “importance” point that is neither a weapon or a powerup. If a player knows their opponent has shock they can potentially deny their ammo, or the majority of their additional ammo.

In the picture below when there are two single packs A there is only one route to take – if the “something important” was a jacket, belt, amp, boots this would be the next pickup after the first ammo pack “in” the flow. The alternative is dropping out the center top then going up the stairs for the weapon. Both provide the same pickups in different order. When the ammo is a double stack at B there are more choices and possible repercussions for the spawning player. There are three possibilities with enough travel time to make each different.

Grouped ammo

In this way weapons could be organised near, but not next to, their ammo and players then have a number of choices after obtaining a weapon –

a) Take their own ammo. Add to team resources.
b) Take their opposing nearby spawn ammo. Deny enemy resources.
c) Ignore ammo and go for the closer pickup (armor, amp, belt, etc) and risk losing the ammo.

Outside of weapons and pickups this is not a large consideration for showdown currently and adding an additional layer of “objectives” could only be considered a good thing for showdown since they are rather quickly exhausted with higher player counts in the current game. Extending the opening moves further is a benefit.

Further to this, if there is ammo somewhere else on the map a player or team may not opt to risk themselves for a single pack but two? Maybe more chance for this to happen.

On the flip side it could be interesting if ammo is not near weapons and players need to share weapons based on what ammo they have picked up. For example if player A spawns and receives two rocket packs but player B has the rocket launcher, they need to meet up and rocket player needs to drop weapon before using the last rocket in order to eek as much potential from the teams resources. For a “teamplay” based team this could be a huge boost to potential damage output.

If the flow is player movement between point A and point B players would leave if there was a reason to, a single ammo pack is not a reason but two may be. Finding the trigger to get players to change their ingrained behavior is interesting.

Ammo is slightly different in showdown due to the no-respawn aspect and showdown needs more player interaction drivers. It also come relatively freely in players minds compared to slapping down multiple belts, amps or additional weapons. Its only ammo right?

Both these points together also mean that if ammo is “in the flow” it must be near the weapon otherwise it will just be picked up.

This

Weapons
Power ups
Dual ammo caches
Single ammo

25 health

Vials?

3) There is something wrong with biasing one weapon? A map and areas on a map will favor one more than another. ut, especially dm maps feel very… samey. By and large most (except smaller “arena” style maps) have one of each weapon spawn. In general all very homogeneous.

Having pickups that are more desirable drives better player interaction. 1-2 weapons having more ammo makes these weapons more important without adding additional

This is not to say your points are not good, but the inverse also applies and can potentially make for interesting times as well!

Finally there have been posts about maps like asdf not being suitable for 4v4. Why not? There are sufficient weapons and pickups. If you screw up and get nothing.. that ss player fault. You now need to play accordingly with your enforcer and play near your team mates more than you might otherwise have to. This makes a weapon drop important and perhaps your team mates will oblige killing someone for you. 4v4 tdm on ASDF would be horrible, but I am not convinced showdown would not work.