Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 1 PVP FEEDBACK for GOZER
05-27-2012, 06:54 AM
Hi Gozer. I'm one of the many... I mean minority of players who PVP. Now I know not everyone is going to agree with me but I'd like to offer you my feedback as it may spark a discussion that allows for you to take a close look at PVP before you start just adding more things. I'll be speaking briefly on consoles, skills, and healing.


You can chain everything in this game. Some players desire a more complex system. But I think that system to a degree already exists in this game if it wasn't for a players ability to chain everything. Take the tactical captain for example. He can chain 2 of the same version of rapid fire, high yield torpedo, attack pattern "x".

Or how about chaining consoles like four Phaser relays. Or maybe two Neutronium alloys which both do +18 kinetic and energy resist, effectively allowing one escort to have +35 resist for both kinetic and energy damage. The same as a Monotanium Alloy console for kinetic damage resist or a Hull Plating console except that with two Neutroniums you get +35 for all energy types. Now if stacking two of one console gives you the stats of the other six whats the point of the other six? Or how about chaining two of the same emergency power so that its never off of cooldown. Whats the point in even naming them "Emergency" powers if you can chain two of them and use them whenever you want?

Now as far as skills go I'm of the opinion that being able to double chain everything takes away from slotting a skill as part of a build within which there is a purpose where one skill works together with other skills chosen by the player to compliment each other to a particular end. Such as stacking tac team with rapid fire, beam overload, and high yield torpedo to cripple a shield and do catastrophic damage to the hull in the blink of an eye. My point is that it is the synergy of skills in combination with the talent of the player against another player that makes PVP fun. Not the double chaining of the same skill for every skill in the game. That detracts from intelligent game play and instead encourages spamming the space bar.

Now I do realize some of you reading this will say that not every class has enough skills for a change like the one I am suggesting to be feasible. Namely the escort captain and the engineer. But if you take the time to check you'll see that there are more than enough powers for each class. The problem is that some of the skills are not practical at all as a result of the way they work currently. But if these skills were looked at and actually made effective there would be enough skills. And regardless of whether anything is changed about some of the skills we find useless in PVP like "auxiliary to battery", namely because it puts other emergency powers on cool down when it shouldn't; Gozer should still look to see which skills and/or weapons need IMMEDIATE attention and start there before tackling more complex problems like re-balancing PVP relative to the new doff system and ftp consoles from the c-store ships.

Finally healing. And this once again ties back into chaining. You can chain hazard emitters, transfer shield strength, hell two cruisers can even chain extend shields on the same target..... ANOTHER CRUISER!?
So currently in PVP even though some premades use polarize hull many simply chain two hazard emitters to buff their healing during combat and at the end of a match. Is it because polarize hull sucks? Nope! When everyone on your team is double chaining heals why should you worry about getting out of a tractor beam or gravity well? The only thing in Star Trek Online that I personally would agree with being chained are the team skills. Tac Team, Sci Team, and Engineering Team.

But to be honest... it would simply be better if you couldn't stack the teams and they were reduced from 30 seconds to 15 seconds for a single team. They are buffs and I believe that its okay. You cannot kill another player with a buff. But you can kill that player with the skills you buffed. The only reason players chain these skills is to cheat the global cool down. But who thought that in STO's game design it would actually be okay to give the player the freedom to cheat global cool downs? I'd love to know. Because I don't see how spamming the same skill relentlessly with no reason to use anything else since you can spam the one thing is intelligent as far as game design goes.

Not only that but if you ask many of the players who PVP day in and day out many will agree that there is TOO MUCH healing in the game as it currently stands. Tactical Team in its current form actually compounds this problem since it auto balances shields for the wearer and makes that target invulnerable to an escorts alpha strike, which it relies on from target to target. As far as healing itself is concerned I believe like in everything else the problem is in being able to chain WAY TOO MANY things in this game to make it more interesting coupled with the fact that some skills and weapons types simply suck or are not working as they would need to in order to be effective for a player to consider adding to his repertoire.

If you asked me what I would do to solve the healing problem I would tell you to make it so that two extend shields could not stack on the same target and cut out the chaining of the same heal on a single ship. i.e. (no 2 hazard emitters, extend shields, transfer shield strength, polarize, etc.)

The only reason players chain skills is to cheat the global cool down. If you can cheat a global cool down as opposed to maybe speccing into your skill tree to trait down by a few seconds the global cool down of one skill that shares a cool down with another skill ( such as tac team and engineering team) what the hell is the purpose of the global cool down system in STO? I guess what I'm saying is that players shouldn't be able to cheat the global cool down on anything except for team skills and that chaining the same skill detracts from intelligent game play because you don't have to think about slotting anything else since you can double stack multiple skills.

Also I'd just like to add that I don't have a problem with tac team auto balancing shields. In my opinion Tactical Team was added to ensure that an escort could stay facing on its target without being able to immediately be forced to turn away from the target as a result of a broadside. Its meant to allow an escort to stay facing the target just long enough to do significant or fatal damage. My issue is that 10 seconds is way too long. And there is a lot of talk about turning it into a separate skill But I still think that 10 seconds is too long especially when you consider that nothing was given to either Science Team or Engineering Team to make those skills just as awesome in SOME WAY which is evident in the fact that many non-tacitcal class players use it or "cant seem to live without it."

I don't claim to be an expert on game design or balance but this post is simply to share my opinion with the community and to open up feedback for Gozer to chew through whats really on my mind as well as all of yours.

-Captain Glitch-
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
05-27-2012, 12:36 PM
Well, "cheating the global cooldown" is definitely something that was build in intentionally. There weren't even any global cooldowns before season 1.2. Snix introduced them, and he created (with community feedback) the various recharge, cooldown and global cooldown rate. He put the system in place.
The choices we eventually ended up worked for an acceptable gameplay, I think. But they are not necessary the best solution to the approach.

The system still feels like it is sometimes haphazardly stuck together, and some oddities in the game exist to deal with other oddities, I think. For example - Shield Resists from Emergency Power to Shields. It's really lame that 2 of them basically are mandatory in every build. But on the other hand, without them, dealing with a fully buffed 125 weapon power attack would be hopeless. Basically, in this case, two wrongs make one right. Or at least, one "acceptable gameplay experience".

Of course, if we look at the underlying problems...
Weapon Energy Levels give ridicilious amount of damage buffs. But Shield and Hull values seem to be balanced against the idea of people running at 50 weapon power, and unless your're in a Science Vessel r have no target in sight, you really should run with much more power to weapon levels.
Compared to the benefit of Weapon Energy, all other energy levels are laughable in their importance. It used to be even worse then now - at some point in the past, there weren't even shield resists from shield power.
But trying to fix this? It would have a lot of side effects that are hard (but I think not impossible) to predict. But just starting here would definitely require a tons of adjustments.

So maybe that's not a good problem to try fixing - too much work to start with, and even more work as a follow-up.


So maybe the question is - where is the best cost-benefit ratio to be had?

Maybe we should just remove Emergency Power to Shields as main shield resist buff. Instead, move all the resistances to shield power. And if that means 125 shield power leads to 75 % damage reduction, so be it. (I don't think it needs to go that far, though 60 % may be necessary).

And while we're at it - Auxillary Power could provide a hull resistance buff. Again, this would lead to

Suddenly you've freed up an entire mandatory build choice. Of course, this is indirectly a buff to every ship - suddenly they can put in hull heals or other buffs in those Engineering slots. Hull resistance powers could be reduced in mangitude somewhat. So maybe we'll now need to nerf some healing powers, since there would be too many of them. But that would also be good, healing is already so incredibly strong and important in this game.

Suddenly, the non-healer would be a little better in self-healing and be more self-sufficient, but the healers would be weaker and need to work a little harder. And, maybe also very importantly - PvE may not be as boring as it is now with a healer build. And maybe finally it starts making sense to run DPS Cruisers agian, since you don't lose as much team healing if a Cruiser spends more resources on damage.

The next step would be fix a lot of powers and give them a real role.

Directed Energy Modulation and Aceton Beam come to mind. They'd fit perfectly in a DPS role, IMO.
DEM is relatively weak, but making it stronger is difficult, since the effect itself can become overpowered with bleedthrough damage. So if we buff DEM, we must buff its "normal" damage against shields, nothing else.
Aceton Beam is pretty much useless in its current state. Reconcept it to a damage resistance debuff, maybe with the old component of the target partially damaging itself and losing some damage. The overall end result would be that these two powers become components of a DPS Cruiser build, something so many people apparantly want but don'T know how to pull off (either by failing to implement one in game, or by suggesting totally unbalanced alterations to Cruiser weaponry).
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3 Agreed
05-27-2012, 02:40 PM
Thanks for the reply Mustrum. You always get your point across with intelligence and tact. You have an intersting point of view. Maybe Gozer will actually read this and get some ideas.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
05-27-2012, 03:24 PM
id like to get the systems team in here with gozer and we can all sit down for cake
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
05-27-2012, 09:31 PM
Tactical team sorta makes my blood boil. Out of all the abilities, this is probably the worst. How can such an ability be so poorly designed to the point that it negates positioning and manually shield distributing?

Utter fail. This is why there is a general conception that the developers don't really think too much before they change abilities.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
05-27-2012, 10:27 PM
OP To clarify some things:

1. Using more than 1 passive console of the same type isn't chaining. It's stacking. Why do you consider this "chaining"? Why don't you consider 2x +35 resist consoles in specific damage types you're being shot at with is better then 2x +18 resist in damage type you're being shot at with?

2. Using 1 THY w/it's cooldown can be "chained" when using Trics which have a longer 60 sec cooldown. You need to clarify what "chaining" is to you. B/c currently w/o other abilities, people cannot fully chain things like CRF, they can chain parts of EPTx (some of EPTx bonuses are under 30 sec while other parts are 30 sec).

3. You seem to think it's ok to "chain" BO, TT, CRF, TYD, but it's bad to "chain" TSS, ES, & HE. What's the difference? Why is teamwork bad (at least in terms of defensive support, not sure if you're including focus fire in this)?

4. People can use Doffs to "chain" a single team. If they're using another team it's because they like its abilities. For example, if a pilot want's to use TT to better absorb alphas, then Sci team to buff shield HPs or remove Sci debuffs they're doing so not to "cheat" a global cooldown, but instead use 2 different teams from 2 different trees b/c they both have desirable uses ..

To Must R:

Tet glider is more than enough extra shield damage people can abuse. The point of DEM is to do extra damage to the Hull. The problem is currently using DEM w/Cannons is more effective then using it w/Beams according to most posts I've seen on people who've done the math on this. If you want to buff DEM for Beam cruisers you'd have to find a balance way of adding to Beam damage w/o buffing it's already quality Cannon damage boost.

Ace Beam's issue is the cooldown is currently a bit too long to be useful compared to other Boff abilities. But, I know people don't like being on the otherside of pet spammed ace beam. Don't know if it needs additional things like resistance debuffing.

I view the Weapons power in reverse. I feel a player must have it at or near full power to do any noticable damage. The other systems can be effective at lower levels b/c they seem to behave more on a linear relationship w/their respective system powers, where the Weapons damage output seems more on an exponential relationship w/weapons power. Now, weapon damage can spike/be boosted to high levels, but this is a result of using various abilities/powers to buff weapon damage output. Either way w/the current resist/repair potential that's out there, energy weapon damage isn't that high.

In general it's way too easy to boost all power levels as it is. People should be able to get to 100 in 3/4 systems just by using EPTx w/warp core engineer doff. Now start adding things like MACO/Plas Leech, Energy syphon, batteries (team batteries even), and things get out of hand quickly. Toggling power settings can be a forgotten skill if this keeps up. This makes Aux2batt less useful sans Tech Doff lolz.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7 Lamid....
05-28-2012, 12:43 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Iamid
OP To clarify some things:

1. Using more than 1 passive console of the same type isn't chaining. It's stacking. Why do you consider this "chaining"? Why don't you consider 2x +35 resist consoles in specific damage types you're being shot at with is better then 2x +18 resist in damage type you're being shot at with?

2. Using 1 THY w/it's cooldown can be "chained" when using Trics which have a longer 60 sec cooldown. You need to clarify what "chaining" is to you. B/c currently w/o other abilities, people cannot fully chain things like CRF, they can chain parts of EPTx (some of EPTx bonuses are under 30 sec while other parts are 30 sec).

3. You seem to think it's ok to "chain" BO, TT, CRF, TYD, but it's bad to "chain" TSS, ES, & HE. What's the difference? Why is teamwork bad (at least in terms of defensive support, not sure if you're including focus fire in this)?

4. People can use Doffs to "chain" a single team. If they're using another team it's because they like its abilities. For example, if a pilot want's to use TT to better absorb alphas, then Sci team to buff shield HPs or remove Sci debuffs they're doing so not to "cheat" a global cooldown, but instead use 2 different teams from 2 different trees b/c they both have desirable uses ..

To Must R:

Tet glider is more than enough extra shield damage people can abuse. The point of DEM is to do extra damage to the Hull. The problem is currently using DEM w/Cannons is more effective then using it w/Beams according to most posts I've seen on people who've done the math on this. If you want to buff DEM for Beam cruisers you'd have to find a balance way of adding to Beam damage w/o buffing it's already quality Cannon damage boost.

Ace Beam's issue is the cooldown is currently a bit too long to be useful compared to other Boff abilities. But, I know people don't like being on the otherside of pet spammed ace beam. Don't know if it needs additional things like resistance debuffing.

I view the Weapons power in reverse. I feel a player must have it at or near full power to do any noticable damage. The other systems can be effective at lower levels b/c they seem to behave more on a linear relationship w/their respective system powers, where the Weapons damage output seems more on an exponential relationship w/weapons power. Now, weapon damage can spike/be boosted to high levels, but this is a result of using various abilities/powers to buff weapon damage output. Either way w/the current resist/repair potential that's out there, energy weapon damage isn't that high.

In general it's way too easy to boost all power levels as it is. People should be able to get to 100 in 3/4 systems just by using EPTx w/warp core engineer doff. Now start adding things like MACO/Plas Leech, Energy syphon, batteries (team batteries even), and things get out of hand quickly. Toggling power settings can be a forgotten skill if this keeps up. This makes Aux2batt less useful sans Tech Doff lolz.

1) I didn't want to float back and forth between "stacking" and "chaining" too much. Technically it is stacking you are correct. The reason two +35 consoles aren't better than two Neutronium's is that you have heals and some classes have Captain Skills that mitigate damage even further so there is no need to stack consoles for any one resist to max. Stacking two Neutronium's allows you to couple the resist you get from skills like Hazard Emitters, Auxiliary to Structural Integrity Field for cap resists for the duration of those skills. So what is the point in maxing one type of resist when you can stack two consoles and max all resists with select skills you can slot?

2) When you chain something you use one skill and immediately use another skill following the cool down of the first skill. An example of this is two Emergency Power to Shields. When you stack something you use two skills simultaneously. An example of this is Transfer Shield Strength and Hazard Emitters.

3) My issue is with slotting two of the same skill to cheat the global cool down. It doesn't make sense for you to even be able to do this when global cool downs in my experience are meant to prevent the frequent use of two different skills for balancing reasons. Why should you be able to improve the cool down of one skill by slotting the same skill twice? I can understand trait to slightly improve the recharge time on a single skill lets say from 45 seconds to 40 seconds but not completely ignoring the global cool down by slotting two of the same skill. A lot of players believe there aren't that many skills in the game but there actually are when you aren't chaining every skill you have slotted.

Also teamwork is pivotal in PVP but stacking two extends shields on the same target is retarded. No one should be invincible in this game and its damn near impossible to kill a target who has two tac teams, 2 extend shields, 3 Transfer Shield Strengths and two Hazard Emitters on him in a Dampening Field with Science Fleet up. I don't have a problem with the 3 Transfers, or the two Hazard Emitters in my example. But you can't stack two Dampening Fields because it would be overpowered. So why should you be able to stack two Extends Shields? You can't stack Tactical Team with Science Team with Engineering Team at the same time on the same ship for a reason. It would be overpowered. I think that Extend Shields should not stack on another target already being Extended for game balance.

4) I think the Doff system is interesting. But I believe some skills are a bit too powerful. There are different doffs for reducing the recharge time on different skills. And there is a limit to how many of the same doff you can have. So there is a sense of balance here. Again in my original post I said that I have no problem with the team skills being chained. They are buffs and cleanses. Engineering team and Science Team are instant heals but only once every 15 seconds and they mean nothing unless there is a resist up to support their shield or hull regen. I hope this clarifies things better for you and anyone else pitching into the conversation. Thank you for your feedback.

-Captain Glitch-
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
05-28-2012, 02:11 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Iamid
I view the Weapons power in reverse. I feel a player must have it at or near full power to do any noticable damage. The other systems can be effective at lower levels b/c they seem to behave more on a linear relationship w/their respective system powers, where the Weapons damage output seems more on an exponential relationship w/weapons power. Now, weapon damage can spike/be boosted to high levels, but this is a result of using various abilities/powers to buff weapon damage output. Either way w/the current resist/repair potential that's out there, energy weapon damage isn't that high.
Well, one can see it either way. But the "naked" hull and shield values have little too offer against 125 weapon power and a full broadside or a cannon barrage (without any buffs). The benefits shield or engine power could give you to boost your resilience are weak compared to the damage buff from weapon power.

But of course it's true, in the current scheme of things, you must have your weapon power above 100 if you want to do anything. That's the 2 wrongs make a right. And why I tend to think (now, it wasn't always the case) that it's too late to change much about the way weapon damage and weapon power works. (One could try to keep the top end weapon damage as it is but increase the low-end damage, but together with weapon power drain, this becomes impossible to rebalance. So I think it's better to not fiddle around here anymore.)


Maybe here a "vision" of how things could be in regards to power management:
  1. Shield Power shield resistance scales up to 65 % at 125 shield power.
  2. Emergency Power to X provide energy levels buffs restore your subsystems, from +10 to +30 depending on rank and skills, and last 15 seconds each. Recharge 60 seconds, Global Cooldown 30 seconds.
    That's overall a 50 % reduction in uptime.
    • Shields: Provides you with an instant moderate shield heal and a small Shield HOT.
    • Auxiliary: Provides you with short (5 sec) massive sensor rating buff and a small Hull HOT.
    • Engines: Provides you with a instant speed burst (3 seconds) that ignores any holds or repels (similar to Ramming Speed), and then provides a small defense bonus.
    • Weapons: Provides you with a small damage strength buff.
  3. Auxiliary to Batteries
    Auxiliary to Batteries combines the benefits of the EPtS, EpTW and EpTS, but at the cost of reducing aux to 5. Your current Aux Power / 3 + 10 to +20 is your effective boost to your other energy levels. It also has weak magnitude versions of the other Emergency Power effects. Duration 15 seconds, Recharge 30 seconds, Global 30 seconds.
    So it can be chained better than the EPtS, you only need a single copy. But the effect is not as strong, so if you go for spike damage or healing, the traditional EPtX are still better.
This way, all the Emergency Powers would be equally useful. At the same time, Emergency Power to Shields would be much less mandatory - if you need shield resistance, you can switch your power levels - but this comes at the price of reducing your damage output, of course.
Drawback of course it requires more situational awareness - realizing when you're being subject to a lot of damage. Biggest problem could be that this buffs cloaked alpha strikes indirectly, as no one has a steady level of protection against this up. (This less of a problem in the beginning of the match when the defender has no reason to buff weapons yet, but mid-combat when cloaked vessels return to combat it could become a problem.)
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