3674 hp changes feedback thread

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Re: 3674 hp changes feedback thread

Postby Erich von Manstein » 16 Feb 2017, 05:32

Ars Nova wrote:...

I applaud. Well said, Ars Nova, this is exactly what I thought.
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Re: 3674 hp changes feedback thread

Postby biass » 16 Feb 2017, 13:02

On the contrary i don't really feel like much was said, especially for 7 paragraphs

I fervently believe that building HP only matters in A): Fringe cases where you only have a few units attacking, or snipes from TML/Bombers etc, the latter of which was what the values were originally changed for.

People complained that Cybran didn't really have a "weakness" and then they were kind of right, the faction had lots of good options while some other factions (guess) had a few useless units that are only seen if a player wanted to BM the other.
The idea of removing HP from buildings added a compromise, Cybran present you with a lot of mid tier options, but punishes you for your mistakes, which is kind of similar to the other faction (aeon player fails micro, uef player isn't positioning units well, sera isnt being aggressive, etc.)

Spoiler: show
The other alternative, ragenerfing loyalists imo would have just pushed cybran to the back and if we played lichking balance mod buffed titans as well, the meta wouldn't change, only the faction using it. I honestly think Harb Rush is stronger, but the amount of uef players on forums kinda shifts the complaint economy.
I've said a thousand times that i think that T3 rush is a map thing, it's strong, of course, but having 50k map reclaim (guess which map i referenced) in spawn only helps enable it.


About the HQs, i cannot speak for navy, but for land everyone was crying last patch that new meta would be to just make 2 tmls and crush cybran every game, it never actually happened, i implore people (you know who you are) to actually get a few games under your belt and see if your theory crafting is really the case this time around.

I don't think the regen is too good an idea, it either does nothing or makes failed pushes more punishing (reclaim is already uber good) but honestly i don't think it will change how people will attack either, i also don't approve of adding any more gimmicks nepty either, its clear people are complaining that the number change is too hard for them, the ability change won't help that. and also having a radar on mexes would be ultra overpowered

Spoiler: show
Finish this cancer with some BM!
Both "Conversely, UEF are weakest because they focus on defense, which makes them slower and less responsive." and "If somebody logs in and sees that their faction has half as much health as it used to, they'll likely be angry and won't want to play anymore." are more then a little false.

I have to explain this to people i train all the time, just because UEF has a T3 turret does not make them a turtle faction, don't play them that way.
That, and lower players will never notice a change in building hp, i would go so far as to 70% of people who didn't look at the patch would not notice.


tl;dr nice patch br0
[edit]: add changelog in the op

Double edit: Ice is probably right, Seraphim was kinda simple, but they were viable, UEF had janus a titans lot nano of billy options that were never seen or used ingame because they were considered asinine garbage. until recently.
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Re: 3674 hp changes feedback thread

Postby SpoCk0nd0pe » 16 Feb 2017, 13:12

Lich King wrote:Until Zock and the team started to fiddle with HQ costs and HPs in August, all factions were balanced.

Definitely no.
IceDreamer wrote:FYI there's objective data saying that until very recent changes, UEF was weakest.

Are you sure? I think I overheared some very high level players saying that UEF may have surpassed cybran. As far as I can tell, UEF is also generally regarded strongest late game and weakest early game. But the building HP buff compared to other faction is strongest at t3.

Ars Nova wrote:Fluidity is a Tactical Advantage

It's been noted that Cybran is one of the most popular factions as well as one of the most dominant. Why? The basics of warfare teach us that the most deadly army is a versatile one, and among all four factions, Cybran is easily the most flexible.[...]

People often complain that Cybran is “too good”, but they don't want to abandon the advantages that make Cybran fluid because they're arguably what makes the faction fun to play as. Making Cybran less fluid will make them cumulatively weaker – this kind of advantage is very difficult to calibrate perfectly, and it shouldn't be fooled with unless you understand why and how it's important.

That's why HP nerfs is exactly the right call to balance Cybran OPness. It doesn't take away their toys but it introduces a weakness to balance for it.

Ars Nova wrote:FAF was so close to balanced that “It'll get balanced eventually” shouldn't even be a promise you're making. Why did you ruin the balance in the first place?

Again: Just no. Even after just watching Gyle casts I could tell Sera was loosing when the game hit t3, especially vs UEF, simply because the game was unbalanced. That is still the case but it's being worked on.

Ars Nova wrote:Handicapping a faction to bring it into “balance” does not actually make all factions play equally at all, and it isn't much fun.

I don't get this. Isn't the purpose of having 4 factions to have them play differently?

Ars Nova wrote:The game becomes “balanced” to where players at a lower skill level cannot play as that faction well.

When a faction enjoys a great deal of tactical fluidity, described above, they have a higher skill ceiling. The most fluid faction will then have the highest skill ceiling and will enjoy the most benefit from practice and ability.
[...]
FA is already a game with a steep learning curve. It won't be assisted by making the curve even steeper for somebody's favorite faction.

Not really a problem and most 'modern' (meaning SC and later) rts have such a faction. If you play that faction, you know what you are getting into.
At lower levels in SupCom it is less about the actual strengths and weaknesses of your units and more about eco management anyway because having more units is usually better then having the better unit. Once you get to the level where it's not so much about eco management, you already understand the game well enough to properly use Cybran to their advantages.
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Re: 3674 hp changes feedback thread

Postby Exotic_Retard » 16 Feb 2017, 14:11

weeelll normally i dont really want to contribute to balance discussions but sometimes i just cant stop myself xd

i thought that ars nova said a few things that are exactly right, and while there were a few things that are exactly wrong i think the general points made are pretty good.

the thing is with cyb is that the reason they were good is because they have a bunch of strats they can do that are all round nice. theres no obvious weakness. and on top of that there are the 29 snipe options. it makes them the most flexible faction imo. i think thats a good thing, i think thats what the game should be like.

the other factions are just lacking, especially sera. aeon makes up for it with their absurd cancer like aurora micro and harb drops but they are a risky faction by nature - forget to micro auroras? too bad you got your ass bombed - cyb with their loya rush and everything else is just a safer alternative (although harb rush is actually still op as ever)

which is why i dont like the hp changes - its a way to nerf cybran, that doesnt really make too much sense imo. factory hp, is not relevant all the time, its most relevant when you are losing/forgot tmd. it technically is a nerf but not in a way thats very consistent. it doesnt make the faction overall that much weaker but it does make them more annoying to play, since people have that tendency to remember the 1/10 games where they got cancer and not the rest.

i dont think this is quite a right step, since i would think that if cyb is strong because they have all these choices available to them why not just make the other factions not so 2d? i mean sure sera got that chicken buff but their othuums are still a bad joke and they still die to loya rush or w.e. uef might have this super high hp going on but they still cant titan rush.

atm we are just giving more cancer to everyone, when i think it should be more like why not give great strats/tactics the other factions can use instead.

im well aware of the statistics, but i dont think that we should be balancing based on statistics. this is about peoples impression. if everyone thinks the game is balanced, then to all extents and purposes, it is. even if one faction has a 2x lower win rate than the other. oh and also im aware of why the hp changes are like that, even the interesting occasional sera buff thrown in there, but again, how much of the time is that relevant?

and interestingly this affects the lower rated players a lot more than the pros, theyre the ones who dont know what tmd is, theyre the ones who get stratted cos cant build sams/shields/w.e. snipes happen on lower rated games more often and this just makes it worse for them. i dont think this patch is considerate of the majority of the playerbase. (yes uef is most played on lower rated games, but second place is cyb)

(oh and same thing with the chicken buff actually - it relies on knowledge and micro - something the lower rated players cant do. to them its just as bad as before, since the key issue with the ion storm killing your own army isnt fixed)

but whatever, i bet tokytos shoes this post will just be drowned in the endless wave of extremely constructive discussion going on here. enjoy
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Re: 3674 hp changes feedback thread

Postby JaggedAppliance » 16 Feb 2017, 20:08

"and remember, u are a noob, u don’t have any rights to disagree" - Destructor
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Re: 3674 hp changes feedback thread

Postby Ars Nova » 16 Feb 2017, 20:36

Nerfing Cybran building HP is balancing by raising the skill floor because all it does is punish basic mistakes. There are two ways to lose a building: sustained attacks and burst attacks. A burst attack comes in a single wave, like when a squad of bombers hits a pgen or when a tac missile snipes something. Sustained attacks are when something is parked in range of your base and is firing over and over, like if you get an entire army into someone's area.

Against sustained attacks your results are the same in most cases, so losing your ground war is losing your ground war. But burst attacks are something people become vulnerable to from poor play. Your forget your TMDs, you're not watching the radar for incoming bombers, you aren't prepared for flanking raiders, you don't have AA coverage to stop a small gunship squad. Newb mistakes. Your top players don't get messed up by this, but your mid-level players and lower get screwed up by surprise burst attacks all the time. Additionally, your mid-level players aren't able to exploit Cybran to its fullest potential because they and their opponents are still grappling with micro, macro, and tech transitions. To them the factional differences feel quite even.

If you start seeing a more "balanced" statistical win distribution in Cybran as a result of this big HP nerf, it'll be because mid and low tier Cybran players keep getting picked off by burst attacks and are dragging the data down. You haven't changed the units to make Cyrban's skill ceiling lower, you've only made the skill floor higher. It's not really the balance you're looking for, it's only making the faction suck for worse players.

And you can't argue that UEF isn't the most defensive faction when they have the slowest T1 tanks with the greatest HP. They spend the establishing part of the game unable to effectively chase targets that don't come directly to them. Nor can you say they aren't becoming the most defense-capable if you objectively give all their structures more HP than the other factions.

As for regen, why bother? There's no point. Buildings can't hit and run, so either they'll be destroyed during an attack or they won't be. The only way building regen could make a meaningful difference is if it were so high that it competed with the damage output of an attacking army, or if you were concerned about consecutive bombing runs and could regen enough health to thwart the second wave. If you're trying to offer the Cybran some consolation for their new weakness to raids and tac missiles, I'd ask that you make their radar stealthy so they can watch the map more easily. Somebody asked to make all their buildings stealthy, but most of the base gets scouted anyway, so other than forward radar installations, tac launchers, or maybe artillery, it would be a huge waste of power.

If I really had a wish, though, it's that you'd balance to alter the general flow of battles rather than to punish Cybran for not being the most paranoid and stressed out faction.
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Re: 3674 hp changes feedback thread

Postby Agrum » 16 Feb 2017, 21:26

Ars Nova, i appreciate your two last posts alot , you have writen down here what i was thinking all the time and couldn't write here down due to my poor english - Thank you !
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Re: 3674 hp changes feedback thread

Postby SpoCk0nd0pe » 17 Feb 2017, 17:47

JaggedAppliance wrote:

Thank you for the overview!

You said some people (i.e. me) are looking at percentages but the changes are based on unit damage. My thoughts about this:

If you give Aeon/Sera t2 resource buildings 2160 HP, they have the HP of old t2 pgens. Easy to remember and the corsair can take the nerf (besides, the number of corsair passes required being decided by a die roll sucks). Sera t2 bombers still need only 2 passes, so the much needed buff to the Notha stays.
If you give their t3 resource buildings 7500 HP, Sera and Aeon can no longer kill their respective t3 resource buildings in two passes, so it is a symmetrical change. Only UEF needs the same 3 strats to kill Sera/Aeon t3 resource buildings they need.
That seems only fair though because the UEF T3 strat is an anti unit strat and hard to dodge, it also has bonus AA. Especially Sera and Aeon need some help against UEF in the game stage where t3 resource buildings are relevant.

@ Ars Nova and Exotic_Retard
Valid points. But there is an equally valid other side to this coin. 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.
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Re: 3674 hp changes feedback thread

Postby Morax » 17 Feb 2017, 18:48

So correct me if I'm wrong, but you (the balance team) wanted to make t3 structures something that can be sniped because it previously was not something that was easy to do?

Cybran definitely became the poster faction for Supp Comm because of its diverse set of units, which maximizes strategic play and options. I suppose a hp nerf is one way to go to make them less viable, but I just don't like it. It seems like a weak idea verse making UEF Mongoose useful, give Sera useful t3 unit, Aeon are fine (in fact, please nerf aurora range a bit?).
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Re: 3674 hp changes feedback thread

Postby Ars Nova » 17 Feb 2017, 20:27

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.
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