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Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
People new to PvP - particularly if they levelled from Ensign to Rear Admiral (or, very theoretically, Bridge General) with only PvE often find themselves overwhelmed by more experienced players that started PvP a lot earlier, sometimes even during the beta phase.
As a result, we see common complaints like "overpowered Klingons", as well as people generally being frustrated with PvP and how bad things work out for them.

What I think could help is if there was a way to track PvP results of players and determine a ranking - and then have the PvP Queue system account these rankings when adding players to a match. For private matches, there could also be something like voluntary handicaps activated, so that either weaker players get a buff or better players get a debuff.

So if two top Federation players and a few "average" players are in a match queue, the two top players will end up on opposing teams. If there are, say, 20 Federation players and 15 Klingon players are queued for a match of FvK, players are assigned to matches so that the teams are "balanced" according to the ranking (if possible).

Challenges to such an approach:
- How do we actually rank players? My suggestion would be to base it on wins/losses and not simply on damage or healing values. Weight it by the rank of opposition faced and number of players in a match.
(I still don't object to have statitics on damage, healing, kills and so on, but they would not account for a players rank, they are just for bragging rights. I definitely think just giving numbers on total number of matches played and total number of matches won would be good information to have.)

- Are there enough players in Queue to actually allow us such cherry-picking? I think with the current setup probably not, but the PvP Queue UI and system proposed by DarrenKiltor for example might handle this better. If we would eliminate "size" of the equation, it could improve even further.

- How do we avoid players "starving" in the queue? If you're spectuluarly bad or good, you might not be considered for matches since you would unbalance any you could join. A possible approach would be to simply ignore player strength after a player was ignored once, until he has played.

- How do we handle unbalanced queues itself - 20 average Feds and 6 top Klingons waiting in the queue. You can't really balance this. Unless we allow inbalanced match sizes, too.

- Weak players might be demotivated by seeing themselves at the bottom of such a leaderboard. Maybe we only ever show the top 100 players or so? [/Fedbear]

- How do we handle multiple characters? Maybe I am a great Engineer but a weak Escort player (the latter I consider true ), where should one find me on the leaderboard? I guess these need to be tracked seperately.

---

Advantages of this approach:

- Avoids lopsided matches were one side steamrolls the opponents, thus helping people remain motiiated. even if they lost - A 15: 10 kills result is better for motiviation then 15:0 kills results or 1200 to 0 influence results. Also, top players will still feel challenged, keeping them motiviated to get better.

- Ensuring balanced matches without forcing everyone to have a similar level of skill allows more teaching and learning to happen.

- The scoreboard/leaderboards statistics itself help players identify people that can help them or might need some help, either during a match or after a match.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
07-08-2010, 07:29 AM
I don't think it would help. Honestly, I think the biggest gulf between people who complain and people who don't is psychological. The people who complain most, and go on and on about imbalance generally don't believe they are doing anything wrong, that they aren't at fault for the failure. Those who complain least take responsibility for their losses and at least own up to the mistakes made even if they can't really correct them. Of course everyone does both things to varying degrees.

You pair up weaker players with weaker players and they don't learn what they are doing wrong, how to improve because their opponents are not doing anything well either. If you put them in with the best, then they get trounced, but they at least have a chance to see where their weaknesses are and try to figure out how to counter their opponents.

Granted, some people just want a simple, fun game where they don't have to worry about their opponents all running FOTM builds or whatever is OP at the moment.

In the end though, I think the queues are too light on people to do this.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
07-08-2010, 09:35 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxrocks
I don't think it would help. Honestly, I think the biggest gulf between people who complain and people who don't is psychological. The people who complain most, and go on and on about imbalance generally don't believe they are doing anything wrong, that they aren't at fault for the failure. Those who complain least take responsibility for their losses and at least own up to the mistakes made even if they can't really correct them. Of course everyone does both things to varying degrees.
That is probably true.

Quote:
You pair up weaker players with weaker players and they don't learn what they are doing wrong, how to improve because their opponents are not doing anything well either. If you put them in with the best, then they get trounced, but they at least have a chance to see where their weaknesses are and try to figure out how to counter their opponents.
That is why one of my ideas is that you don't just put "good" players in one camp and bad players in another. Mix the teams so that every team has good and bad players.
Overly optimistic might be assuming that there are enough good and bad players on either side that such a balance can be achieved, and that Cryptic could actually build a Queue that would work like that.

Quote:
In the end though, I think the queues are too light on people to do this.
[/quote]
Yes, that's my other concern.

It would be cool if the system could support multi-tiered PvP. E.g. treat 2 tier 4 ships like 1 tier 5 ship or something like that. But I am afraid the system is not really designed to handle such differences, either.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
07-08-2010, 11:13 AM
I'll go type up a draft of a player run pvp-fleet ladder. I've been meaning to do it for a while now.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
07-08-2010, 11:15 AM
Perhaps an accolate rating should be available on the character information screen. Depending upon the number of other people you have blown up, you get a specific accolade.

For example, I've probably killed an average of 300 Feds in ground PvP for 40 days = 12,000 kills. When I one hit someone with my uber combinations of pain and suffering, would knowing I have killed 12,000 people matter?

I've probably blow up an average of 60 ships in space PvP for 50 days = 3000 kills. When I blow someone up with my battlecruiser, would knowing I have killed 3000 ships prior to this kill matter?

I don't know. But maybe accolades can keep track of kills?
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