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Points of Contention

Kittik

Well-Known Member
1) The very limited range and restrictive nature of casting abilities/finishing casting abilities while in combat.

Combat isn't horrible in this game. It, at times, is fun. But hours of fun are almost always negated by the few moments of absolute infuriating aggravation that comes with the mechanics currently in place.

Overly restrictive LOS on mobs to either begin casting or finish casting an ability remain my (and not only mine) biggest issue that takes what should be fun, and turns it into the very opposite.

What compounds this issue is the abilities mobs can use to daze/stun players and then immediately swap to someone else...then swap back once daze/stun wears off. Again, with the lack of aggro management by tanks (and I didn't even play a tank this weekend) mobs jumping back and forth between two and sometimes three players exacerbated the frustrations and highlighted the overly restrictive mechanics of finishing an ability. The worst offender of this mechanic are the ranged mobs who use a bow and will constantly try to walk away from whoever is at the top of their aggro list. Constantly typing or shouting "Don't move" is worthless as people don't understand why not to. Don't care. Or it doesn't matter anyway because the mob switched targets so frequently that every time my group would pull one of these mobs we all dreaded the fight. It was something none of us looked forward too. And, imo, not what I think a game designer would want. Making it challenging and puzzling is one thing, making it frustrating is a different. There might be player abilities in the game later to help combat this, but as it stands now, you'll lose too many players before you get to that point.

2) Please add Sense Heading. Or a craftable compass. Please. Again, it seems adding to player frustration for no apparent or viable reason is the only justification I see here. Asking people doesn't work for solo players. Asking people didn't work for players who joined our group and were still unable to find us. People could not tell if they were heading north/south up or down. One guy spent 30 mins trying to find us because he didn't know which Ember ring he was at. There was zero objection from people I asked and some of the possible remotely objection replies were "well, once you know the area" "I've been through this area so many times, I kinda know it now" phrases.

(Addendum to #2 - the little white arrows the circle around a players portrait to show whey they are in relation to you, are difficult to see. I confirmed this with most people I grouped with.)

3) Would still like to know the level of members LFG or in my group. We fought (red to me) mobs last night and me and another member who were a couple levels lower than the highest member were not getting any exp. I thought this had been changed, but it either broke or maybe I read something wrong. One of the most asked question in our groups yesterday was "what level are you?"
 

Kaeolin

Well-Known Member
You forgot the issue with Ranged NPC's. We get that they are ranged, but the fact that they move around so much trying to stay in ranged, and seemingly without a penalty. If I have a bow, at close range, I should have a penalty to hit as well as a penalty to my defense as I can't block with a bow. Ranged Mobs totally negate a defender's ability to control the battle. In reality, they should swap weapons once a group engages them in melee range.
 

AdricLives

Administrator
Stormhaven Studios
people don't understand why not to. Don't care.

This is the battle we've picked though, we want people to care and learn, not just go through the motions. And yea it's an uphill climb because these become points of frustrations where players resist adapting, but we need to keep a level head and see where we can fix things in a way that is not just "removing challenge". And I'm not saying every frustration point is in this category, but that is why I appreciate when feedback continues even for things we've not directly addressed.


it seems adding to player frustration for no apparent or viable reason is the only justification

The reasons come in regards to adding features which reduce immersion, eliminate challenge or reduce requirements for cooperation. I still think there is justification to keep players paying attention to the world and not navigating the world via a UI overlay or stopping every 30 feet to read their compass. Especially for a feature with a one-time cost. There might be some solutions which can offer options to reduce frustration, but a feature which globally undercuts a core value of the game is not something we really want. For example perhaps you can orient yourself at certain locations, like some property of an Ember Ring which is consistent to the orientation of the world that allows you to, at that moment, read direction from it. That at least seems useful and does not remove responsibility on the player to navigate themselves to their destination. Or with our discussed Ember Currency if orientation came at a cost, but even then I am wary that we're paving over a learning opportunity and cheapening the experience as a result.
 

Kaeolin

Well-Known Member
oh you also forgot the issue with Loot. We were at the camp near the city in NNH doing exiles. Mobs were probably 7-10, dropping gear with level restriction of 10 that wasn't that good. I had a helm that had 2 AC...Exile Mask I think it was called.
 

Kittik

Well-Known Member
This is the battle we've picked though, we want people to care and learn, not just go through the motions. And yea it's an uphill climb because these become points of frustrations where players resist adapting, but we need to keep a level head and see where we can fix things in a way that is not just "removing challenge". And I'm not saying every frustration point is in this category, but that is why I appreciate when feedback continues even for things we've not directly addressed.

The reasons come in regards to adding features which reduce immersion, eliminate challenge or reduce requirements for cooperation. I still think there is justification to keep players paying attention to the world and not navigating the world via a UI overlay or stopping every 30 feet to read their compass. Especially for a feature with a one-time cost. There might be some solutions which can offer options to reduce frustration, but a feature which globally undercuts a core value of the game is not something we really want. For example perhaps you can orient yourself at certain locations, like some property of an Ember Ring which is consistent to the orientation of the world that allows you to, at that moment, read direction from it. That at least seems useful and does not remove responsibility on the player to navigate themselves to their destination. Or with our discussed Ember Currency if orientation came at a cost, but even then I am wary that we're paving over a learning opportunity and cheapening the experience as a result.
I don't know how to split the quote...so starting with your first reply.

I completely understand that and agree with it. How it is now is not something people will learn to get better at. We had a group of vets running last night. We know how to handle these mobs and know what we need to do. But it's pointless when a tank can't get aggro back from a healer. It's pointless to have mobs constantly moving backwards faster than any of us can move forward. It's to a point of great frustration for any melee class to even want to engage in those fight because (in another point I mentioned) we spend the entirety of the fight casting abilities to see them not finish casting. Again, because there (at this level) is nothing we can do to limit the mobs movement, tanks can't hold aggro, the mob is constantly switching targets and moving a different direction. There are other and more options to throw into classes that make this mechanic fun and interesting instead of aggravating and frustrating.

Repling to your second reply...

I don't see how adding a compass to the game is in any way a reduction to immersion. I'd take a compass over a map. At least I could draw my own map. But when I'm no where near a land mark, I have no clue if I'm running N/S/E/W. Also, unless a zone spans many levels and is huge (at which point knowing where you're going is even more important) no one is going to spend time in these zones to get to "know" them. Alpha testers have gotten there simply due to having to do it over and over again. A new person is going to level to 5 or 6 well before they "know" any of these zones. Even new players are going to out level a zone before they get to "know it".
 

Felwit

Well-Known Member
Regarding a compass - Maybe we don't add a NSEW compass. What about a "compass" that showed you where your friends are, to make them easier to find? You are already providing the information, so this would just be improving the interface (and maybe that's something that has to slip for schedule reasons). Something like below. The middle notch is directly ahead. If they are behind you, it is to the far right/left. The white notches may be for group members. I put in an Orange notch, in case you wanted to add information such as the direction to the closest Ember Ring (maybe you only see that when you get within XX meters). Maybe you can allow for hovering over the notch mark to know which person is that way. You could make the group leader a different color. Maybe use different notches for the Def/Sup/Str types.
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Felwit

Well-Known Member
I think we have chat bubbles too that indicate direction to people. Those can also be used to help with finding group members, though the distance may need to be increased for group chat bubbles, as well as the duration they remain up.
 

Rev

Well-Known Member
Personally, I feel like CV entrances should be moved to NNH only and it be a 6-10 dungeon. You would go to NNH around 4-5 and then hit the dungeon at 6 once specialized.
 

Kaeolin

Well-Known Member
Personally, I feel like CV entrances should be moved to NNH only and it be a 6-10 dungeon. You would go to NNH around 4-5 and then hit the dungeon at 6 once specialized.
I support this idea. probably need to provide more content in SNH though
 

Kittik

Well-Known Member
This is all I'd like to see. See that very small arrow on my screen next to my name. It points north, and north only....

Something as small and easy and un-invasive as this doesn't break immersion...it's simple and all it has to do is always point north.
 

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Whanaopeo

New Member
Ooh, another thread discussing a compass so I'll just have to jump in. It really amazes me how unwilling the devs are even to TRY a compass during beta and going forward.

So I'll say it once again: There's nothing fun in getting continuously lost or waiting for someone else who got lost. Absolutely nothing fun and doesn't really add anything else but frustration. In theory it might seem like a nice way of immersion but in practice it's just one way to make ppl quit and never look back!
 

Kaeolin

Well-Known Member
Ooh, another thread discussing a compass so I'll just have to jump in. It really amazes me how unwilling the devs are even to TRY a compass during beta and going forward.

So I'll say it once again: There's nothing fun in getting continuously lost or waiting for someone else who got lost. Absolutely nothing fun and doesn't really add anything else but frustration. In theory it might seem like a nice way of immersion but in practice it's just one way to make ppl quit and never look back!
Once you learn the maps, it's pretty simple to navigate. Old school gamers are having fun and it's taking us to a time when gaming was more of a challenge and not just about mashing buttons.
 

Kittik

Well-Known Member
Once you learn the maps, it's pretty simple to navigate. Old school gamers are having fun and it's taking us to a time when gaming was more of a challenge and not just about mashing buttons.
I disagree with this statement for two reasons. One, the "I had to walk up hill to school in the snow, both ways" is a disparaging argument that doesn't do anything other than tell others they are being sissys.

Two, I feel in no way that having a small compass, or even a large bulky, takes up half the screen when you open it type of map, impedes upon anyone that doesn't want to use it....yet not having those items greatly reduces the appeal to others.

So what do you want? Want to be stubborn tell people to suck it up and learn a map, when in reality of a level based game, you're not going to spend nearly enough time in that map to learn it before you out level the region, OR, swallow some pride, and understand that putting a very simple QOL feature in your game is going to make more people happy since you've eliminated a large part of the most frustrating aspect of your game.
 

Undone

Codemaster
Stormhaven Studios
1) The very limited range and restrictive nature of casting abilities/finishing casting abilities while in combat.

Combat isn't horrible in this game. It, at times, is fun. But hours of fun are almost always negated by the few moments of absolute infuriating aggravation that comes with the mechanics currently in place.

Overly restrictive LOS on mobs to either begin casting or finish casting an ability remain my (and not only mine) biggest issue that takes what should be fun, and turns it into the very opposite.
There are a few ways to handle the execution of abilities.
  • check if you can execute the ability every frame
  • check if you can execute at the start of execution + and at the end of execution

We are using the first option. Using the second option comes with some major caveats that I worry would make the experience worse for players. A good chunk of our abilities have a 2 second cast time - now imagine we use the second option and your target moves out of range immediately after you start your execution - what happens? We waste 2 seconds of your time because you are under the impression that your ability is still executing. We could try to design some fancy UI but that UI would have to indicate why the execution is no longer valid - which in my opinion would just be more clutter. When an ability stops executing you do not lose stamina and I don't think it triggers the global cooldown (?) - the only thing "lost" is the time you spent executing before it failed and a little effort to hit the button again.

What compounds this issue is the abilities mobs can use to daze/stun players and then immediately swap to someone else...then swap back once daze/stun wears off. Again, with the lack of aggro management by tanks (and I didn't even play a tank this weekend) mobs jumping back and forth between two and sometimes three players exacerbated the frustrations and highlighted the overly restrictive mechanics of finishing an ability. The worst offender of this mechanic are the ranged mobs who use a bow and will constantly try to walk away from whoever is at the top of their aggro list. Constantly typing or shouting "Don't move" is worthless as people don't understand why not to. Don't care. Or it doesn't matter anyway because the mob switched targets so frequently that every time my group would pull one of these mobs we all dreaded the fight. It was something none of us looked forward too. And, imo, not what I think a game designer would want. Making it challenging and puzzling is one thing, making it frustrating is a different. There might be player abilities in the game later to help combat this, but as it stands now, you'll lose too many players before you get to that point.
I completely understand that and agree with it. How it is now is not something people will learn to get better at. We had a group of vets running last night. We know how to handle these mobs and know what we need to do. But it's pointless when a tank can't get aggro back from a healer. It's pointless to have mobs constantly moving backwards faster than any of us can move forward. It's to a point of great frustration for any melee class to even want to engage in those fight because (in another point I mentioned) we spend the entirety of the fight casting abilities to see them not finish casting. Again, because there (at this level) is nothing we can do to limit the mobs movement, tanks can't hold aggro, the mob is constantly switching targets and moving a different direction. There are other and more options to throw into classes that make this mechanic fun and interesting instead of aggravating and frustrating.
I'm really confused at what you mean by "lack of aggro management by tanks"? Their role combat bonus is +Threat. They have multiple abilities that do regular dmg + threat. They have a dedicated taunt that is nothing but threat. Eventually some even get an enrage that forces the mob to attack that specific tank. At what point does "challenging and puzzling" turn into frustrating? Every challenge can be a frustration until you figure it out no?

It sounds like that when you had a group that knew how to play it was a fun and challenging experience - but when you ran with folks who maybe didn't quite understand the mechanics things were frustrating? I'm not sure how one would design a game to fix that. If you are finding that players don't care - I'm not sure how dumbing things down would make that any more/less enjoyable?

This is all I'd like to see. See that very small arrow on my screen next to my name. It points north, and north only....

Something as small and easy and un-invasive as this doesn't break immersion...it's simple and all it has to do is always point north.
2) Please add Sense Heading. Or a craftable compass. Please. Again, it seems adding to player frustration for no apparent or viable reason is the only justification I see here. Asking people doesn't work for solo players. Asking people didn't work for players who joined our group and were still unable to find us. People could not tell if they were heading north/south up or down. One guy spent 30 mins trying to find us because he didn't know which Ember ring he was at. There was zero objection from people I asked and some of the possible remotely objection replies were "well, once you know the area" "I've been through this area so many times, I kinda know it now" phrases.
I don't see how adding a compass to the game is in any way a reduction to immersion. I'd take a compass over a map. At least I could draw my own map. But when I'm no where near a land mark, I have no clue if I'm running N/S/E/W. Also, unless a zone spans many levels and is huge (at which point knowing where you're going is even more important) no one is going to spend time in these zones to get to "know" them. Alpha testers have gotten there simply due to having to do it over and over again. A new person is going to level to 5 or 6 well before they "know" any of these zones. Even new players are going to out level a zone before they get to "know it".
I disagree with this statement for two reasons. One, the "I had to walk up hill to school in the snow, both ways" is a disparaging argument that doesn't do anything other than tell others they are being sissys.

Two, I feel in no way that having a small compass, or even a large bulky, takes up half the screen when you open it type of map, impedes upon anyone that doesn't want to use it....yet not having those items greatly reduces the appeal to others.

So what do you want? Want to be stubborn tell people to suck it up and learn a map, when in reality of a level based game, you're not going to spend nearly enough time in that map to learn it before you out level the region, OR, swallow some pride, and understand that putting a very simple QOL feature in your game is going to make more people happy since you've eliminated a large part of the most frustrating aspect of your game.
All compass thoughts/talks are on hold until we get a new skybox. We have some celestial plans that might be able to help the situation in a far more organic way - but I can't work on them until we are able to update to Unity 2021 and implement the new skybox. I have some very strong feelings about a compass due to my experiences with other games (both playing and implementing features).

And I believe your comment about players out leveling zones before they "know it" is only true for South, and maybe North Newhaven. Meadowlands & Dryfoot are much larger and span a far greater level range than those two.
 

Undone

Codemaster
Stormhaven Studios
Ooh, another thread discussing a compass so I'll just have to jump in. It really amazes me how unwilling the devs are even to TRY a compass during beta and going forward.
I think it's a bit disingenuous to say that the devs are unwilling to try things. We've been extremely open and flexible in our design always doing what we can to incorporate player feedback. I have always said I will keep my ear to the ground as development moves forward and will continue to do so.
 

Undone

Codemaster
Stormhaven Studios
(Addendum to #2 - the little white arrows the circle around a players portrait to show whey they are in relation to you, are difficult to see. I confirmed this with most people I grouped with.)
Regarding a compass - Maybe we don't add a NSEW compass. What about a "compass" that showed you where your friends are, to make them easier to find? You are already providing the information, so this would just be improving the interface (and maybe that's something that has to slip for schedule reasons). Something like below. The middle notch is directly ahead. If they are behind you, it is to the far right/left. The white notches may be for group members. I put in an Orange notch, in case you wanted to add information such as the direction to the closest Ember Ring (maybe you only see that when you get within XX meters). Maybe you can allow for hovering over the notch mark to know which person is that way. You could make the group leader a different color. Maybe use different notches for the Def/Sup/Str types.
I don't think a separate UI element is the proper way to solve this problem. The arrows scale based on distance but it sounds like I need to disable this feature on the group nameplates so that they are easier to see. And I do not want to add any sort of compass "tape" because the community will immediately call for things like ember rings, group members, quests, POIs, etc to be added to it. Which is exactly one of the things I am trying to avoid with this whole compass ordeal.
 

Undone

Codemaster
Stormhaven Studios
Personally, I feel like CV entrances should be moved to NNH only and it be a 6-10 dungeon. You would go to NNH around 4-5 and then hit the dungeon at 6 once specialized.
I support this idea. probably need to provide more content in SNH though
Why do you all feel this way? North Newhaven will also have a dungeon. In fact, it will be the "same" dungeon (Central Veins) - but a new area of the dungeon. How do you think the smugglers do their smuggling?
 

Kaeolin

Well-Known Member
Why do you all feel this way? North Newhaven will also have a dungeon. In fact, it will be the "same" dungeon (Central Veins) - but a new area of the dungeon. How do you think the smugglers do their smuggling?
The reason I think Rev says 6 is so that groups can have at least the initial levels of abilities for all specialty classes. CC is more important in the Dungeon that anywhere else. That was my thinking in saying I support it being higher level. Overall, CV is challenging, but not to hard, so I wouldn't cry if it stayed as is either. :D
 

Kittik

Well-Known Member
All compass thoughts/talks are on hold until we get a new skybox. We have some celestial plans that might be able to help the situation in a far more organic way - but I can't work on them until we are able to update to Unity 2021 and implement the new skybox. I have some very strong feelings about a compass due to my experiences with other games (both playing and implementing features).
Well come on Unity!!!