Archive for the ‘Forum Replies’ category


Is the ut4 enforcer startweapon OP?

rAge.;Hello,
I just analysed my last three TDM 4v4 matches, because I was frustrated a bit by enforcer power. I noted every kill of every player in those matches, this is what I’ve got…

Weapons with the most kills:

DM-Chill (open map):
1. ENFORCER (25% of overall kills)
2. SHOCK (16% of overall kills)
3. SNIPER (15% of overall kills)
4. FLAK (12% of overall kills)

DM-Spacer (semi-open map):
1. LINK (27% of overall kills)
2. ENFORCER (16% of overall kills)
3. FLAK (14% of overall kills)
4. ROCKETS (12% of overall kills)

DM-Decktest (open map):
1. SNIPER (27% of overall kills)
2. SHOCK (19% of overall kills)
3. ROCKETS (17% of overall kills)
4. ENFORCER (14% of overall kills)

Questionable sample size but understandable given you had to do this manually.

Firstly looking at the selected maps we can easily assume that enforcer would get more use on chill than the other two maps, simply because it has less weapon spawns compared to the other two. Chill has , spacer has an additional link and deck has.. heaps. The thing that stands out the most from those three sets of stats is the enforcer being in the top 4 on deck, not because it is OP but compared to the number of ut4 weapons available on deck vs the other maps.

Kills are not a great metric to look at how “OP” a weapon is, especially in a scenario where weapons are limited. How often are players swapping away from other weapons in these games to do large amounts of damage using the enforcer? For example on deck a large % of the kills are with sniper – if players were “smarter” should this be lower and should they be finishing with the enforcer? What are player death holding enforcers like? This metric is about as useful as what you have provided but should paint the opposite picture – most player deaths occur with the enforcer equipped.

Some mash up of total kills vs enforcer kills vs number of weapons on a map would paint a better picture.

rAge.;
Probably It would be pretty similiar if i will check another maps (where another players played). As we can see enforcer is always on top… That means it’s not working properly in TDM, shows how less important is positioning right now. Also those statistics prove, that shock / sniper are efficient only on open maps, even on semi-open map like DM-Spacer they were dominated by link / flak and rl.

In other threads you have commented on how the enforcer is annoying in tdm because players quite often have low health, either from previous fights or specifically due to people pecking away health with the enforcer.

Could it be time to change the health/armor spawn times and look at the number of armor pickups in TDM? ut99 had 18 second health packs and other afps have 20 second armors. Lowering health packs to 20seconds reduces the window fresh spawns have to capitalise on injured opponents by ~30%. Simply having more armor makes the enforcer weaker while not effecting the current weapons as much since they are fairly over tweaked.

If players are less squishy the enforcer will not be as viable.

Don’t take this the wrong way, I am not a fan of the enforcer (so boring, long range, zzz) but the way you have gone about showing its OPNESS is not good.


Variable belt nonsense

Control should not mean one player has all resources and the other has none. Control should mean that a player has a resource advantage, at the expense of time. This resource advantage should not be permanent (provided items are collected) and by giving the out of control player a method of stacking that allows the resource difference (stack differential) to be equalised they have a method of breaking control that does not rely on execution and/or luck. The in control player must use the advantage in the window it takes out of control to stack to an amount in order to challenge them.



Barktooth: Well, all I have to add is that if you haven’t already, go read this:
http://arenafps.com/ut4-duel-solution/

Oh dear you found that… post. Not sure I agree with it all since writing it and I primarily started writing it as a rebuttal to the pro armor/health tick down crowd to demonstrate how no tickdown could be use to influence the game. One point to note is that my comments about tweaking armor using %s is pretty useless.. I hesitate to say flat out wrong without expanding but the way I use it in that article is incorrect. If I had to make one change it would be to say have the mega as a +50 rather than +100, so max health takes longer.

The one point I do like is the shorter respawn on weapons which potentially places more emphasis on ammo pickups. If the game is played with denying opponents preferred weapon it will still work, you simply need to return to it more often. If denial relies on denying majority or all weapons it will be less viable with the current load out of weapons on a map. It would also allow maps to have less weapons, roughly half the current amount and still work.

From an overall game perspective to obtain optimum longevity and variety a set of 3-4 armor/health would be ideal. On top of these two (possibly three) weapon respawn times – current and short (with less ammo). With these options more map styles are available. None of this is complicated compared to hero match ups and items in mobas. They are “knowledge” skills.


My main gripe with the current ut4 armor system is primarily that “in control” consists of running belt + jacket and the lesser armors are so weak they are not worth bothering with for the in control player. This means the base stack differential is around 150. It is not possible to survive some of the one shot weapons with base health + pads + helmet. I am a fan of giving the out of control players reliable stacking options rather than nerfing protection across the board – ut3 is bad in this regard. If I had to “fix” the current setup with minimal changes to work on current maps I would change two armor values and one respawn time. While not ideal it would open up the current duel game significantly while retaining the underlying dynamics. In fact it could be said it improves the underlying “what to take” dynamic.

1. Lower jacket to 75 armor.
2. Raise pads to 75 armor.
3. Lower belt spawn time to 40 seconds.

Everything else remains the same.

This changes the second item that the “in control” player may want to control from the jacket to either the jacket, the pads or both. This buffs out of control sneakyness and forces the in control player to “know” what their opponent has as denial hinges on what their opponent has rather than defaulting to jacket. If the in control player wants to play a heavy armor denial game they must run three armors rather than the current belt+jacket.

It buffs the helmet in a round about way, as the helmet + either pads or jacket will be roughly equal to the current jacket. (95 armor). Roughly equal because the helmet requires more base health to service the amount of armor but it is close enough.

40 seconds may sound like a huge belt buff but it will clash more often with the other 30 second items and it will give more opportunities for damage from the out of control player. By clashing it opens up potential pickups to the out of control player. It also forces the belt player to spend more time denying it and if the map is setup in a way, putting themselves at risk.

It lowers the effectiveness on the belt player for picking up additional items after the belt is damaged. In the current setup a player with 100/150(belt) can be damaged to 100/50, pickup jacket and have exactly the same amount of effective health as a fresh belt pickup. This would be 25 less. A small change for sure.

I’ve probably forgotten some things but you get the idea..


I was interested in the OPs variable belt thing and wanted him to expand upon it. This idea essentially gives the belt from 100 down to 80-85 total additional hit points. The reason it does not give the full amount is due to low values of belt offering virtually no protection so the wearer dies with belt points left. Not sure why this route would be taken over simply changing the value. It has some weird repercussions like belt never running out at very low values. Obviously they could be addressed but why?




Zaccubus Duel Analysis

Zaccubus is posting new demo analysis videos. I am not a fan of these super in depth stop/start demo analysis for any game since players do not have time to think such in depth thoughts during play, and hindsight reveals everything. They tend to make the commentators look very clever. A better alternative is demo analysis of good players, outlining why they do specific things.

In general the video says what it needs to and probably teaches many players something, but there are some glaring points that should be addressed. The highlights, for me, are when zacc points out specific times to be aggressive, push for kills and most importantly, the why.

First spawn options
Videos opening is disappointing, calling two spawns similar when one is significantly better. Lucky for the viewers zoh makes the right choice.

Rocket spawn options: Rocket -> Lift to shock (potentially flak) | Rocket -> lift to pulse + vials + sniper. Mini/bio are not choices as they take too long and give up too much.

Bio spawn options: Bio -> Shock | ignore bio -> shock | Ignore both -> bounce pad to rifle -> vials + pulse or flak.

The rocket spawn is better. A player picking the bio spawn specifically to go for shock runs the risk of their opponent spawning at rocket then taking the lift dodge to shock. They are then contesting shock with an enforcer, or best case getting to shock ahead of the rocket player then taking a close range fight vs rockets with shock. Neither is ideal. Not 100% sure if the flak spawn can get to shock in time but that is another consideration. There is a spawn near pulse that would also allow killing of the player coming from bio to shock.

Spawning bio then ignoring shock and taking the bounce pad to rifle is potentially dangerous. Can you hear the flak pickup from the bio spawn area? If you cannot you might end up going lift into a flak shell OR the player at flak hears you, opts to go shock -> rockets, leaving you with rifle, pulse, vials and maybe mini for the first jacket spawn. This could work, depending on your play style. There are also spawns near mini that have fast access to shock. Potentially these spawns suffer from the same problem if you opt to simply bum rush shock. However if one player does this from bio and the other from the mini spawns, someone will likely die. Bit of a dice roll.

The spawn that can generally go safely to shock first is the one on the bridge above rockets.

Bio is a low % spawn choice to get a preferred weapon. You run the risk of not getting items you need or running into a player with your pants down. Looking at potential starting spawns can open up early opportunities. At the very least you can walk away with a decent group of weapons for opening encounters.

First Spawn (Video 1:50 / Game clock 9:45)
There are two possible weapons left on the map after this kill. The pulse and mini. Fjaru was headed towards pulse so assume that is gone. The rocket spawn is around 2 seconds closer* to the mini (using the lift near belt) compared to the flak spawn, so picking this was not entirely wrong. The rocket spawn is probably a better choice of the two, however putting a small delay before selecting the spawn would possibly have avoided death here – there is nothing else at rockets for fjaru to get so he has no reason to drop down. Pausing on the spawn increases the likelyness of him going to flak, or in the very least away from rockets, to look for you.

*A gut feeling rocket was closer while writing but had to test this in game.

The main problem at this point which is not addressed by zacc is that the only weapon still up once fjaru takes pulse after the first kill is mini. There is ample time (15 seconds) for fjaru to go to the mini before jacket instead of attacking down to rockets. This would have left zoh with nothing to contest jacket spawn. Except bio, if he can even get it. This is not to say that this is a mistake on fjarus part but more to point out the potential problem for zoh. Fjaru playing slightly less aggressively would have yielded even worse results for zoh. For example fjaru has a decent idea where zohs initial spawn was due to the shock pickup that would have been heard 100% near sniper/flak.

At this point in the game keeping track of what weapons are up is relatively simple. You know what you have and how much time has elapsed. Nothing has respawned yet.

Ignoring spawn choices the question could be asked if zoh made the correct move off the rocket spawn he picked. If we want to look at “mistakes” this is surely one – rather than going to lift he up to mini he makes a bee line for the belt. Rewinding even further you could say he makes the mistake straight off spawn when fjaru is above him / drops down. Rather than going left he potentially could have gone right, up the lift. There is a good chance he would have died anyway, however because fjaru drops it is the “best” avenue of escape available. Also using hammer alt while trying to escape..

Second Spawn (Video: 2:15 / Game clock 9:38)

Clicking in straight away here is portrayed as a bad thing by zacc. Zoh took the only spawn with a weapon left, assuming fjaru went and got the mini after killing zoh near belt – reasonable assumption. This was the only way to have a weapon for the upcoming jacket spawn.

I think hanging around was a mistake – we know the rl is spawning shortly after the armors as zoh started here, so getting bio, going down to rl for pads + rockets then potentially shock -> flak+helmet is probably the way to go here. This is the fastest known way to get back into weapons. We know fjaru has rifle and flak, however the flak spawn is potentially further away from the flak than the rocket spawn that zoh started on.

What – Gameclock 7:09 to next spawn

Fjaru did not deny the jacket because when he was taking the shock (and potentially checking the jacket spot) it was not up. It spawned at :39. There was a good chance fjaru did not have the pickup time as he was near/using mini jump-pad when zoh picked it up at 7:09. Sure, he should be playing with it in mind, even without a time, but this is all rather razor close for someone who does not know the spawn time. Fjaru picked up the shock, if he checked the jacket visually here it would not be there – going to pads the way he does is a good option. He may have also healed up, as he came from the low passage at rl.

Out of control 3:34 Game clock

zoh is not out of control. He took the last jacket – fjaru was likely at belt so does not have timing on it. In/out of Control get thrown around too freely in ut. Control is when a player has belt and jacket timing (or control) and their opponent has neither. If a player has belt, gives up multiple jacket spawns in a row and the next belt, yet manages to loose no armor their opponent is not really in control. They have no stack advantage.

I disagree with having more shots here. Fjaru has belt, zoh is 86/76. In order to be in a condition for the next jacket pickup (or next belt) he should preserve the limited stack he has. Playing safe like this and avoiding damage is good, especially when the player has a lead. Obviously he did not contest the next jacket pickup.. but he still has stack and missing the jacket was not as crucial as it would be if he had no armor.

The next pause when zoh ambushes fjaru at shock after jacket pickup has similar comments about control – as if landing the combo damage changes control. It removes fjarus stack but but does not automatically give zoh control. Control is achieved on the next set of armor spawns/pickups.

One last point here – this combo damage was quite low, fjaru took a direct rocket at the next belt fight and the belt glow did not disappear.

The last belt kill + fjaru suicide
Even before this point the game is won. Zoh can play defensively, take the next jacket while fjaru is at belt and waste the last minute. Unless this is a competition match I strongly believe that trying moves that are not ideal is not terrible. If zoh died and failed he has three frags to drag out off a fresh spawn, harder to practice than +backing with a decent stack and weapons.


More ut4 spawn protection

rAge: Why respawn protection is bad and unfair? Just watch the video 🙂

Szarkan should get a frag, but he don’t. He wasted his ammo and get some enforcer damage. In the same time his opponent steal him a100 and shieldbelt. After all Szarkan almost lost his life. Why nubaka should be dead? because he choose this spawn itself. The spawn was safe, he could wait there, but he decided to risk and take the armor.
Super-unfair.

This is a terrible example of spawn protection.

He did not “risk” to take the armor. Because of spawn protection he was 100% safe doing what he did.

The jacket did not spawn for the duration of the video, or if it did it was close to the start, when the player was at pads. It was up for some time before the kill. If the killer previously in control of jacket/belt he screwed up and caused them to be spawning at the same time – or if the jacket had been up while he chased hard for that kill rather than going for it. This is exactly what duel should have more of. Just not because of death+spawn protection or sloppy play. It should be an occurrence that occurs regularly to force decision making and force the in control player to delay.

This is part of duel – the blue player opted to run around dealing damage rather than timing and controlling. That is fine, and a decision he needed to make. Players are aware that spawn protection is in the game currently and thus leaving items up like that could allow a situation like this to occur. The dead players is aware that there is spawn protection. Without spawn protection would he have spawned there? Even if he had would he have run out like that? Essentially not adapting to the game. Stating that he should have got a frag is silly – there is spawn protection and so he should not have got a frag. There is no way of knowing if he would have got a frag had there been no spawn protection because the dead player would not have been able to do what he did.

Its not “unfair”, it is simply how it is. The question is does it make the ut better or not?

ASDF is primarily a duel map, if the author put the bio spawn there specifically for this to occur – a possible spawn after death to get free-ish armor. If this was the goal then all that happens is the spawn is moved from where it is onto the jacket itself to achieve the same thing. Armor spawns are not a thing in ut but they are in a number of quake maps, aerowalk specifically.

He knew about the belt, you can see that he is going in the right direction just after the combo, he turned out when he realised that combo didn’t killed his opponent. Probably he was confused because of that, and made a mistake (but it’s still mistake caused by spawn protection).

He knew about the jacket then. Why leave it up knowing this could occur? Granted the whole situation was somewhat awkward – jacket up, belt spawning. He couldn’t allow the player to goto belt because it was spawning so soon (assuming he was aware of that) and killing him was the better risk since there is only a chance the dead player will get the jacket spawn.

Regardless of this the player was wrong to assume that the combo killed his opponent. Because spawn protection.


UT4 Weapon Switch Speed

Flikswich: Anybody can hide around a corner with flak, it takes no skill do do so but because of the switch time it puts you at a huge advantage. This is completely disproportionate to the amount of “tactical thinking” that went into that move and is just a way for a bad player to get a huge edge over a good player without having to do anything intelligent.

Sorry, what? I’m positive you like quake, this would be considered cooler level mastermind tricks if done there. 😉

It does indeed take “skill”, even ut4 weapons slower switch. Skill applies to all aspects of the game. If this was duel you should have some reasonable expectation where the other player is, especially on a map like asdf. This is skill. If you opted to walk around the corner with the rifle out; walk around a corner into a situation where your weapon is not appropriate for what could occur then it is skill that is lacking. The current switch speed is too slow for stopping escaping players or in combat fancyness, I agree, but it is fully sufficient for swapping regularly while moving around the map. ut99 or quake2 are examples of slow switch that is painful even for this. If you choose to walk around a corner with shock out in a way that puts you at a range where you need to spam secondary vs flak or rockets it is your lacking that has caused the problem. Even with fast switch playing this way is not optimal. Even with cpma instant switch it is not optimal, especially with ut weapons that have the ability for huge front load damage. You are relying on your reaction time + swap speed to counter a guy with the appropriate weapon out.

It could even be argued that with the current abysmal state of player footsteps and audio in general forcing players to swap frequently is a good thing as it adds more sound queues.

The player that commits to this trap has to know the same things. They have to know where you are else they risk standing around achieving nothing for a period of time. Have you taken this route from belt to armor the past two spawns? Seems like a good place to wait. The player doing this is taking a risk – not contesting pickups, not getting weapons, etc.

Now this is not to say that the current switch speed is good (I don’t think it is) or that the current flak is balanced.. just think outside of aim and reaction when considering aspects of the game as skill.

I get the distinct feeling that uters are very hung up on mechanical skills and overlook “brain” outside of “omg timing to the microsecond”.


UT4 Bio rifle – changes?

DSK: Thank you ever so much for projecting your own opinion into your own, fallacious logic.
GitzZz would like to have a word with you: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=swYbipom8OE

The bio rifle is like other ut4 weapons; If you put time and effort into it you’ll be rewarded. Why don’t you try to do that instead of throwing your toys out of the pram because you , seemingly, are unable to do so at present and want to remove it from the game because you cannot be bothered to do so.

ehh. I like the bio by itself and would like to see it similar to ut99/2kx implementation firemode styles – albeit heavily tweaked.

Bio in ut99 was useless bar dropping down lifts. Codex shock lift was good for this.

In 2kx it was more useful (your video) but it was a fairly dangerous choice. I don’t know if committing to bio play was ever a good idea when a player had other weapons. It was generally a -ve play. Yes you can probably find examples of players using it but it has never shared the podium with all the other guns. The changes in 2kx that made it more useful were good but some of its other.. issues.. also held it back from being more than a novelty. Yes player use should not be the only indicator of a weapons usefulness but at the same time it should not be ignored. The bio was underused because it was not overly useful.

It was strong in 2kx but was too much of a gamble to use due to being hard to land a shot. When difficulty of use grows too large players tend to shy away from weapons because it is simply unreliable. For example a weapon that instagibbed players and then killed them on respawn (so two kills per one) with a 1% hit rate would not be usable. This is what the bio was like. There are some posters on the forums who have commented numerous times about high damage weapons that are challening/hard to use/avoidable being “ok”. There are limits.

Charging time : Other weapons deal similarly large amounts of damage and are not hindered by charge times nearly as long. The lg/rifle. Two rockets. Full flak primary. Combos. All of these deal high damage with no wind up time. Rockets being the obvious exception, but even then the load time is much shorter. In a game where many weapons can front load large amounts of damage instantly after weaponswitch it is odd that the bio is limited in this aspect. Why?

Activation sound : Like the previous point, the bio alerts everyone to its whereabouts with audio queues when charging up. Besides rockets it is the only weapon in the game that does this. Now personally I like this and like how rail/lg have audio queues in quakelive. If it was my choice a large number of the ut weapons would have ambient noises added. However because none do (besides rockets loading) the bio is unique. And yet one would assume a weapon handicapped by an audio queue like this would be “stronger”, yet it is anything but.

As to the intention of changing it to something completely different – I don’t think this is required, the base weapon needs tweaking so it can fulfill some sort of reasonably frequently required niche.

Bio is quite often pointed to as a weapon for area denial or covering escapes. It tends to fail at both of these.

Lower the lifespan on bio blobs to 2-3 seconds. Remove the ability for players to destroy them. This allows players to “cover retreats” with the weapon effectively. It allows players to use the bio for area denial more effectively. Give it a higher ROF.

Or use Stolids bio launcher. Also cool.


ut4 Air Control?

euler_2: slows down the gameplay

I don’t like huge air control but I don’t see how it slows down gameplay? Air control in and of itself doesn’t really change the speed of a game? It might make players less predictable and give more movement options, but by itself slows down gameplay? Maybe elaborate so readers have a better understanding what you mean on that point.

makes movement unpredictable
[B]bad movement decisions should be punished[/B]

Agree 100% on punishing bad movement decisions and unpredictable. At their core FPS are about punishing bad decisions and one of the best way they do this is by making players predictable in some way – in this case by choosing to jump off a ledge into the air. Avoiding a damage using movement while airborne does take “skill”, however avoiding that situation entirely and not pressing a button to escape it also skill. Diluting the game to the point where it becomes a see thing -> react is lame.

There was a post in one of the double jump threads a long time ago. The poster commented that he was bounced in the air by rockets in 2k4. He was able to avoid the follow up shot from his opponent by jumping in the air, throwing off the other players prediction shot. This was slated as a good thing as it adds skill and depth.

While this is not exactly the same as air control it does tie in somewhat. Does pressing jump after being bounced really add depth to the game?

Now, this is not entirely bad or good, however it does have ramifications and is a fun scenario to look at. In a game that (this forum seems to think) is dominated by hitscan a player got a nice rocket hit, enough to launch the other player. Good work! The rocket user was then going to follow up with a rocket on the landing spot, one of the more gratifying FPS things imo. This takes “skill” by itself.

renders projectile weapons basically useless and limits them to spam and pullbacks, in trun makes hitscan weapons much more important, which skews the weaponbalance from the get-go

In a way it is like weapon switch. ut99 is obviously one end of the spectrum and cpma the other. In ut99 having the correct weapon out for a given situation was quite important.

Not convinced on the weapon balance point. On one hand it buffs hitscan – lets say this is the case. If a player is falling and cannot alter their course – pulse/mini tracing is very easy + reliable high damage or a projectile can be placed easily where they are falling to. The weapon balance itself is tied to how the ut4 weapons handle. If a rocket is not effective because of air control it can be buffed (examples) faster speed, more damage, larger explosive radius and so on. However what this does is skew weapon balance for players that do not have avoidance movement.

Before watching the video in this thread I was unaware that players could jump sideways then change direction back in mid air in ut3. This seems excessive – quake style air control is generally disconnected from strafe movement. To use it you hold forward and “steer” with the mouse. This is a nice middle ground where players can adjust (in some versions a lot) their direction but cannot strafe left, jump then strafe right while in the air.


Slow stacking non-binary armor and time restraints in duel

Sir_Brizz: Yeah, for add stacking or in relation to the concept above of having “mini shield belts”, for example.

Lets call this slow stacking.

TLDR; It takes longer/is time consuming to build/maintain stack and makes out of control stacking to reduce stack differential via pickups rather than just damage an option. It restricts the in control players time, movement and opportunity to pressure the out of control player while giving them a way to stack to challenge the in control player.

It depends how the armor system is setup. To simplify pretend we transplant the ql stacking armor (only armor) with the current ut values, everything 30s spawn, max 200, belt becomes 60% (or whatever , no shards, no mega, nothing else. Obtain two pads and have 100 armor. Obtain 2 jackets and have 200 armor. Obtain a jacket and pads and have 150 armor. Obtain 4 pads for 200. Etc.

Slow stacking/non-binary duel is about time management. Control and stack comes at the cost of having time to push the out of control player and out of control costs more time to build a stack that can be used for a direct confrontation.

Player stacks and actions are controlled by time – in order to service a large stack and heavy denial a player should have little opportunity to pressure their opponent. At the same time the out of control player has freedom of movement at the expense of stack. This also ties to their aggression as a failed attack, even without dying costs them the next X period of restacking time.

In my opinion control should not mean one player has all resources and the other has none, which is typically how ut armor/duel works. Control should mean that a player has a resource advantage, at the expense of time and predictability. This resource advantage should not be permanent (provided items are collected) and by giving the out of control player a method of stacking that allows the resource difference (stack differential) to be equalised they have a method of contesting control that does not rely on execution – with ut damage this would always be an option anyway. The in control player must use the advantage in the window it takes out of control to stack to an amount in order to challenge them – the in control player must take the out of control players potential stack into account.

There are other repercussions – +forward is slightly more favorable before critical mass is reached as players take longer to stack. There are more opportunities to control players stack when contesting pickups. This means if three items are run by the in control player, the out of control player can apply some damage at each pickup, negating the pickup the player is currently taking. It has a potential to introduce a “balanced” state where players trade damage and pickups for longer periods than with the current setup, even after one dies.

To highlight the difference using the current ut4 duel – if a player has control (jacket + belt) they can ignore the pads. They are a one time boost to the out of control player that is small compared to belt, they can still be one shot with current damage values. If pads stacked the in control player has to make a choice – spend more time denying the pads or deal with the other player having 100+ armor at some point in the future 30-60 seconds. This is actually why this change alone would not fix duel – in control player would just move pads higher up their priority list and take three items instead. Some claim that this is required currently, some not, however allowing stacking would make it a serious consideration.

The easiest way to balance duel is by looking at it as time management which can be spent on different aspects. This change is more about providing options to out of control.

Watch the first map in the video below. See how Dahang ends up with heavy control yet cannot push onto Cyhper, in large part because doing so would allow items to spawn which he could potentially miss. Notice that while Cypher is under pressure it is not the same as +forward pressure you might expect and he has a decent amount of freedom to move around.

 


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! 🙂