SpoCk0nd0pe wrote:It is much harder for beginners do defend against Loya rushes because it is much harder to punish with t2. Beginners tend to scout less, so it is also much easier to get corsair sniped. Or to make a more general point: it is easily as much more difficult to defend against the Cybran advantage at lower rating, as it is to defend against raids and tac missile snipes against your stuff.
I would even go so far and say this disadvantage doesn't hurt as much at lower levels because few people with lower ratings send the exact amount of air, or fine tune the amount of raiding units. People overbuild a lot more so the HP difference does not have the same impact.
The HP changes only affect burst attacks and raids. Arguably, loyalist rushes are stronger now because, as fast units, their raiding ability is amplified from buildings being more fragile. There's no change in their combat interaction with ground forces. Buildings are more vulnerable to sniping now so that's not helping new players at all.
There's certainly a lot of outside curve theories you can make about how HP changes will affect the more strategic parts of the game, but none of that can be verified and even after months of play testing you'd find people disagreeing on its exact effects because play styles vary. I think at its base level, the most pragmatic thing you can say is that buildings with low HP will die faster. Buildings designed to die the most quickly, as with the Cybrans, will die the most quickly.
Personally, I think putting buildings at greater risk of destruction will lead to players being more conservative. If you reduced this balance methodology to its most absurdist level and gave all factories 1 HP, you might argue that you'd see a lot of aggressive play because people would be taking advantage of how a LAB can instantly kill a factory. And in fact, you may very well see that, but I think once people adjusted they'd find an optimal meta to produce safe and consistent results. The entire game would come to revolve around raiding and sniping and securing against those things.
You couldn't allow troops to pass your front line, so you'd be forced to sew that up and then consolidate it. After that you just have to be aware of everything at all times. I'm not sure it would be a pleasant environment for anyone to play in, because low skills players can't perform the micro and composition balance to deal with that, and high skill players can't be omniscient so they'd find themselves getting sniped and suddenly losing even if they were otherwise dominating the game. Low HP buildings don't merely raise the skill floor making it harder for newbs, but it also increases volatility and decreases the certainty of reward for high skill play, because a Hail Mary can instantly turn the game around.
Now obviously the patch isn't going to take buildings to 1 HP, but the important thing to recognize by reducing to the most absurd state is that there is a curve where having low HP is going to produce detrimental effects. If you really believe that low HP buildings will create "play diversity", then it's important to recognize the amount of "play diversity" low HP creates can't possibly be linear or otherwise the ideal would
be buildings with 1 HP. Also, if you're setting one faction to experience an HP decrease faster than the others, it will reach that detrimental state sooner than the others and experience more of the drawbacks of that curve.
Bottom line, I don't understand the appeal of making raiding or sniping easier. I enjoy that it's always been possible, but I've always thought of it as playing dirty. It's spotting a vulnerability and then instantly exploiting it. Many games are won that way, but the best games for me were ones that were drawn out and involved a lot of combat. It seems to me that having a strategic advantage is a lot more interesting than winning the game because your opponent forgot to build a shield and two TMDs near his HQ factory.
I think it's wrong and maybe a little insulting to everyone's intelligence to say these changes are to "promote play diversity" or any other positive but generally empty phrase. Nobody knows that a change like this is going to lead to "play diversity", whatever that's supposed to mean. I really think the change should be looked at for what it frankly and obviously is: an HP reduction to buildings with a particular emphasis on nerfing Cybran. So three questions need to be asked.
1. Does the game benefit from players being and able to snipe and raid buildings more easily?
Is it more enjoyable this way? "Play diversity" has nothing to do with it, we are just killing buildings more easily now and that's all that's definitely happening.
2. Did Cybran have an advantage in map control or defense that warranted a nerf to their ability to survive raids and snipes in particular?
Because if the problem is a T3 Loyalist rush, then making Cyrban weak to raids isn't solving the Loyalist problem so much as it's making Cybran harder to play before they reach and abuse Loyalists.
3. Should this patch have tested the effect of lowering building HP evenly before it separated UEF and Cybran into winners and losers categories?
Because as it is, the patch is now testing HP reduction AND also testing the effect of creating a wide disparity in building health between factions.