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Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
I got the advice to have the community agree on ae solution and then attempt to communicate this to the development team (specifically Salami_Inferno). The idea is that a consensus will combine a strong voice together with a strong and community-supported solution, hopefully making it easy to settle for a fix.

The primary challenge is to find a consensus solution. I know there are many ideas around. I will briefly talk about some and why they might not work due to technology or balancing reasons, and finally present a possible solution that should avoid such issues.
  1. Bring back BFAW back to its pre-buff state. This should be easy to do, but it might not be done because the fundamental reason why BFAW was tweaked still applied - that version of BFAW was not strong enough to the design team. Still ,this is one of the community's most favored approaches, as the old BFAW was not broken and still utilzied to deal with pets and mines.
  2. Adjust the BFAW skill so that the secondary shots deal less damage, with the primary shot dealing 100 % damage, and the secondary shot damage increasing by rank, by similar percentages as Cannon Rapid Fire does. This approach might simply not be technically feasible. There seem to be no examples of abilities that allow such differing damage outputs.
  3. Adjust the Cooldown Category of BFAW to Category 5, a 10 second duration, 30 second Global Cooldown and 60 second recharge. Everything else about the power can stay the same. This might be the easiest solution to implement, aside from returning to the old BFAW.
  4. Adjust the BFAW skill so that the secondary shots hit only NPCs. This approach might also fail due to technical limitations, the targeting system doesn't seem to differentiate between NPCs and PCs (a long-standing issue in our attempt to fight spam). Also, it would still hurt Carriers very hard. (Details)

Current Conclusion (May, 12th, 2011 - 3:57pm)
Overall the easiest choice with the best support is bringing back Beam Fire At Will to the state it was before the fix. It has the most support.

Changing the power's cooldown might be a tempting alternative for me (it's my pet idea), but there is no real support for it.

There is also "Proposition D", which is basically the second itemized suggestion above. 100 % damage to primary target guaranteed, secondary shots dealing only reduced damage and that damage slowly increasing by rank. (Damage values might be 30/40/50 %, which is in line with the DPS buff the original BFAW inflicted.) There are several ideas that have results similar to that one.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
04-09-2011, 04:10 PM
There is precedent in the engine for AOE skills to have cone firing arcs.

For instance CSV will fire at 2 added targets with in X degrees of primary target.

There is no reason BFAW should not have this same limitation on its secondary target.

Obviously the cone would need to be larger then the CSV cone... however something like a 120-200 degree cone around the primary target would STOP BFAW use from working on targets that the user is not even aware are there.

This would also hamper the idea of running 5 Faw boats circling around. It would mean such a team focusing on one target would not be able to simultaneously engage targets on the opposite side of their ball.

This would not in anyway change FAWS ability to remove spam. It would simply require users to use it wisely, ala CSV.

FAWs DMG numbers should also lowered to be brought in line with CSV. Having the same dmg multipliers as the cannon single target skill seems to be in error.

They are not 100% comparable however
BOL should be the beam equivalent of RF
BWAF should be the equivalent of CSV

Seems FAW right now is more in line with RF the CSV.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
04-09-2011, 04:13 PM
Decrease the AOE pulse to 50-75% power. If more is needed then more can be taken away afterwards. Small to moderate adjustments are needed, lest we accidentally bring back spam.

Also increase the speed of destroyable projectiles (tric mines and torps, heavy plasma) and/or add a native defense bonus, since FAW changes have made these abilities close to worthless (this is the bigger problem imho), and just simple decreasing the damage of FAW will not change that unless it causes a mass exodus away from the power.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
04-09-2011, 04:20 PM
Logically speaking, or trying to, the FAW deal looks to me like this.
-- Primary target recieves 100% of the damage, so Base + 40%
-- 2ndary target gets an random AoE pulse...but it is at full strength and shouldn't be. So if your firing max weapons power to primary, the 2ndary target should get less than base since you are pulling extra power from your core which is limited.

On that note, the 2ndary damage should be 140% minus 70% or 2ndary beam damage is capped at 70% of base or 30% less than base.
If you did wanna place a arc restriction i am for 120 to 150 Degree front and rear.


This idea i like most:
Beam Fire At Will - Proposal (Category 4)

Duration: 15 seconds
Recharge: 60 seconds
Global Cooldown: 30 seconds
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
04-09-2011, 04:28 PM
Without wanting to feel like an oppressive forum police dictator or something: The goal here is to form a consensus, not a brainstorm of ideas. If we want a fix, we better have one we can agree on.

Whatever you have in mind - do you think the cooldown category change could work and achieve balance?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Husanak
There is precedent in the engine for AOE skills to have cone firing arcs.

For instance CSV will fire at 2 added targets with in X degrees of primary target.
CSV still has a different cooldown category and uptime then BFAW, so BFAW still has every chance to end up better then CSV. Especially if you extend the arc beyond the small one of CSV. There is a good chance you can still always catch two targets then, and at that point, you get the top damage buff already. It becomes even likely that the entire team can now focus fire on two enemies instead of having to split all damage on 5 ships. With Cannons, this can only hope to work with Turrets in the first place, and Turrets have the cannon range disadvantages and deal even less damage than beam arrays.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hurleybird
Decrease the AOE pulse to 50-75% power. If more is needed then more can be taken away afterwards. Small to moderate adjustments are needed, lest we accidentally bring back spam.
Problem: Uninitutive to player. (This was also a problem of the old skill). Using the power means you deal less damage then without the use of a power against a single target. That doesn't seem to work within the usual spirt of power use, where using a power always gives you some benefit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sithterror View Post
Logically speaking, or trying to, the FAW deal looks to me like this.
-- Primary target recieves 100% of the damage, so Base + 40%
-- 2ndary target gets an random AoE pulse...but it is at full strength and shouldn't be. So if your firing max weapons power to primary, the 2ndary target should get less than base since you are pulling extra power from your core which is limited.

On that note, the 2ndary damage should be 140% minus 70% or 2ndary beam damage is capped at 70% of base or 30% less than base.
If you did wanna place a arc restriction i am for 120 to 150 Degree front and rear.
See OP for why I think this might fail due to technical limitations.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
04-09-2011, 04:34 PM
Here my way to solve it that diffrent han all others and back to the old alittle

Make firing cycle random, like old BFAW + aliitlet faster weapons rate of fire , put all random beams = base bamage.

Attacks that hit primarry target ,
target recieve a buff beam attack with BFAW but aliitle stronger than the current BFAW because of the luck factor.

I think it fits the role of BFAW great, because its like telling your BO, " fire at will" like all new recruits do, they spazz and fire everywhere but you somtimes hit your target and hit them good.

This would take skill for the players and stop BFAW teams.

problem solved
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
04-09-2011, 04:39 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by MustrumRidcully View Post
Whatever you have in mind - do you think the cooldown category change could work and achieve balance?
Simple answer. No It will not work.

Reducing the cool down does not in anyway stop 5 people from engaging it at the same time. With a team of people doing it even a 10 sec duration is going to be long enough. The same team could also roll them to still achieve the same effect.

I think the main issue with the skill right now is that its 100% fire and forget still. With a nice bonus if you are capable of doing a little focus fire.

Would increasing the cooldowns on OLD broken CSV have fixed the issue ?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
04-09-2011, 04:42 PM
I like the longer cool down, although I'm still concerned about the extra free pulse being as powerful as the rest. With the cool down change and a reduction of the free pulse to around 60-80% (or maybe that will be too much?) seems ideal.

Looking solely at FAW will is probably going to be bad news for spam since one broken power to fix another only hides and creates more problems. I absolutely agree with the idea of providing a base defense to moving projectiles with whatever change is made. There should be a chance to miss. As far as BFAW's effect on spam, it's true that we don't want to neuter it to the point that spam comes back with a vengeance, but we need to keep in mind that eventually spam should be reduced whenever they get around to fixing it for real.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
04-09-2011, 04:42 PM
Quote:
Simple answer. No It will not work.

Reducing the cool down does not in anyway stop 5 people from engaging it at the same time. With a team of people doing it even a 10 sec duration is going to be long enough. The same team could also roll them to still achieve the same effect.

I think the main issue with the skill right now is that its 100% fire and forget still. With a nice bonus if you are capable of doing a little focus fire.

Would increasing the cooldowns on OLD broken CSV have fixed the issue ?
I would disagree that 10 seconds are enough. If you decloak just in that very moment, maybe. But the point of the 15 second gaps is that you don't have to do that, you know there is a time where the enemy is dangerous and a time where he's not. Normal ships should be able to last long enough to counter the effects - and then get a 15 second pause where they can recover and perform a fully fledged counter strike.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
04-09-2011, 05:00 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by MustrumRidcully View Post
I would disagree that 10 seconds are enough. If you decloak just in that very moment, maybe. But the point of the 15 second gaps is that you don't have to do that, you know there is a time where the enemy is dangerous and a time where he's not. Normal ships should be able to last long enough to counter the effects - and then get a 15 second pause where they can recover and perform a fully fledged counter strike.
Would it be better then it is now... of course. Is it a permanent fix... I don't think so. It will still be very much off in comparison to other aoe skills. As Hale has pointed out it is also not going to address the main issue that we are all finding hard to think of right now. That being spam. If its possible with in the engine then dmg reduction needs to be considered for the free shots.

I will agree that the skill needs to have the cool downs looked at. I can agree with that. Will it balance the power, I don't agree with that no. Honestly could you imagine old bugged CSV... still being in the game, just on a 1 min cool down. lol
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