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Cryptic Studios Team
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,388
For some time now, we have been kicking around the idea of instituting map-wide variables on all PvP maps we currently have in the game, in order to apply global changes to the way that certain powers operate. While this wouldn't be considered a true "fix" for PvP overall, we feel that, if we got the numbers right, it could go a long way towards addressing some points of primary concern among both players that are both Casual and Hardcore PvP enthusiasts.

Before I go into the details of what's so far been considered, I want to make it absolutely clear that these are only IDEAS, and stating them here for feedback is absolutely NOT a guarantee that they will be implemented. And even if they are, there's a good chance they will not see the light of day, even on Tribble, until after our May Update.

With that in mind, here are a couple of the map-wide modifications we've been considering:

1) Max Hitpoints/Shields Increases

This was originally considered for Ground PvP specifically, but we later began to wonder if it might be appropriate for Space as well. For now, we're considering very large increases - as much as 200%-300% of your base hitpoint and shield amounts.

We fully realize that changing this one factor, without modifying powers, would fundamentally alter the flow of battle. It would completely change the intrinsic values and opportunity costs associated with many powers, as well as changing the perceived value of cooldowns and escape tactics.

The recent thread titled "Spike vs. Pressure" paints a picture that seems to indicate that this would end up being a bad thing for Space PvP, resulting in the very real possibility of matches where ships never died. However, we've yet to see any evidence that this would be anything other than a good thing for Ground PvP.

2) Healing -OR- Damage Output Decreases

Unlike the previous option, which would have a fairly equal impact on both Damage and Healing effectiveness, these ideas are more surgical, affecting either one or the other, at disparate levels.

Applying Healing effectiveness reduction to PvP maps would lead to extremely volatile matches unless it came hand-in-hand with limitations to Spike Damage potential. While limiting overall damage output would likely be a bad idea because it impacts "Pressure" DPS more profoundly than "Spike" -- not a great idea to exacerbate this issue. This probably means that this option is even less likely to be a good idea, than the previous notion. At least for Space PvP.

3) Reduction in Status Ability Effectiveness -OR- the Resistance Thereof

Presume that the term "Status" refers to just about anything that is not Damage. Buffs, Debuffs, Repel, Disable, Confuse, etc.

To be frank, we're fairly well satisfied with how effective most powers are in PvE in terms of their ability to inflict Status effects, and manipulate the flow of an encounter. As well as players' options to resist the effects of these abilities when they are used by NPCs. That's not to say that they are perfect, or that there isn't room for improvement, but we're OK with them as they are. Generally speaking.

In PvP however, the combination of extreme skill stacking and high resistance factors, cause us difficulty when attempting to find the correct balance point of an ability's effectiveness. We have therefore theorized that allowing us to limit one side of the equation or the other, ONLY in PvP, might allow us to tune these abilities in a more focused, controlled manner.


So, those are the main ideas we've had so far. We'd like to hear some open-minded feedback on what consequences any of the above could potentially have on the viability and flow of PvP combat, and its popularity among Veterans and non-Veterans alike. Keep in mind that we recognize the potential risk involved with making global changes of this nature, so you can bet your self-sealing stem bolts that we'd be testing any map-wide alterations extensively on Tribble before sending them into a Live environment (we've already investigated how to control this).
Jeremy Randall
Cryptic - Systems Design
"Play smart!"
Originally Posted by Me
Kurland here...