Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 1 STF design problems
06-01-2012, 07:11 AM
I think a lot of us have been complaining about the state of players in solo queue, the issues with drop rates and so on. In my view, these things touch on but don't really grasp the core problem with the STF missions as they stand right now.

What I mean by this is that, with the way STFs are set up, they aren't carrying out their intended purpose as missions suitable for end game players. Here's why.
  • The timer is probably the biggest stealth culprit here; people will often complain about the problems the timer directly causes without identifying it as the culprit. In particular, the reason above all for DPS being the sole deciding factor in STFs is the timer. There is no real reason to roll a Science ship and even less to roll a true tank. Creative play is not rewarded in STF missions because the timer forces a certain threshold of damage-per-second (and it's typically an unforgiving one) to be reached; this means that even if playing with one or two Science ships is somewhat feasible, it's not optimal, and with relatively long cooldowns as well as raid times, you can't really afford to take the chances.
  • None of the missions really rewards tanking (if you're not dead via the first instakill torpedo, you will be by the second), and it only minimally rewards crowd control (on the Cure as well as Khitomer it's a little better, but not by much; generally if you need to CC Nanites or Raptors you're already in dire trouble).
  • Completing an STF often involves cheese methods (Infected in particular). "Methods" is a misnomer, really; there is only one right way to do an STF. In good games (the original Guild Wars as well as WoW come to mind) raids are very social and there are dozens, if not hundreds of strategies for doing them with the least amount of fuss. Not so, here: you are literally constrained to one means of damage due to the ticking clock, and one means of finishing it because the penalties for not doing it in this one way are far too harsh.
  • This is less related to the STFs themselves, but it's always bothered me: the two equipment sets, being rightly or wrongly as popular as they are, have inadvertantly made one of the game's energy types completely useless. Why would I ever run Plasma when I can reliably bet that another person's ship is carrying MACO/Omega shields?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
06-01-2012, 11:31 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by shimmerless
I think a lot of us have been complaining about the state of players in solo queue, the issues with drop rates and so on. In my view, these things touch on but don't really grasp the core problem with the STF missions as they stand right now.
Mostly agreed. But this has been cryptic's way for aeons now. They are unwilling or unable to design an interesting fight: the best they can figure out is "zerg your way to victory" - that's by all likelyness because they are not players of their own games.
Cryptic's thinking, when discussing "boss", is "more hp" or "more DPS" or "more both". It's been like this since CO launched oh-so-many years ago. Even when designing scenarios that require a specific, different, skillset, they tend to force you to repeat it too many times (gekli F-Action?).

The Crystalline entity is a step in the right direction... but it's SO damn hard (or it was last time I found a group to try, 3 weeks ago and a bunch of difference in my build/skill), and totally impossible to face in a PUG.

Quote:
[*]This is less related to the STFs themselves, but it's always bothered me: the two equipment sets, being rightly or wrongly as popular as they are, have inadvertantly made one of the game's energy types completely useless. Why would I ever run Plasma when I can reliably bet that another person's ship is carrying MACO/Omega shields?[/list]
That's because borg do plasma damage. Since the entire endgame (fed-side) is based on borg battles, with only a few notable exceptions, people prepare for borg battles - thus, plasma becomes useless in PvP.

I think the whole game is unimaginative and shows a lack of creativity. See crafting - identical to CO and with the same stupid mistakes CO's had.
Were it not for the franchise, it'd have been long gone. My opinion.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
06-02-2012, 01:54 PM
I agree that STFs are all wrong, mainly by the reasons that you mentioned. Few days ago I was thinking what Devs could to make them not only DPS oriented and playable for all player classes and builds. Not only escorts with huge DPS.

I came up with such idea: let's take for example Infected space. As we know, before Cube and two spheres are killed, nanite generators and transformers are shielded by green forcefield. It's off when you kill Cube and spheres. Why?
I should be still on and can be disabled only by player ships. Let's say that you have to destroy transformer but to do this, you must lower those force fields. To do this one or more players must work on putting it in off state. I see it like this: you fly with your ship close to the force field and initialize action of 'turning off forcefield'. Then your ship fires energy ray to the forcefield and you must stay within 10 km to the forcefield until that ray destabilizes forcefield or something like that. To make it little more dificult, you cannot attack while doing this. If you do, you must repeat start lowering forcefield from the begining. Also it takes about 5 min for a eng captain in a crusier to lower the forcefield. Half the time for Sci captain in Sci vessel and two times as much for a tac in a escort. The players that don't fly in a ships designed for their class can't lower forcefield because they don't have required knowlege of using ship systems for such tasks or some other ********.
To make things even more interesting, while you work with the forcefield the Spheres and probes are coming from the gate all the time! So yeah, one player must focus on disabling the forcefield and try to survive incoming hostiles and the rest of the group must do everything to keep him alive until the forcefield is down and they can destroy generators and transformer.

Whats the point of this idea? The Sci captains in Sci ships would be finally welcomed in STFs because they could disable forcefield really fast while casting buffs. The eng in curiers could disable it in a resonable time and, as they are perfect for tanking, they could take much beating if the rest of the team fails to protect them. As for the tacs in escorts, they would be awful for disabling forcefield, because it would take ages for them, but they will be great in a role of protectors.
Also the clock should be removed and hostiles made that way that protecting field disabler would be really difficult. But I don't mean to give them even more one hit shoot abilities!

It's just a idea that I came up with while drinking a beer. It's not ideal, I know but as you can see, you can actually do it that way, so that every player would have a role to fulfill. Any comment apriciated.

And as always, sorry for my bad english
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
06-02-2012, 03:58 PM
A couple of ideas for KA space...

-Make it so an enigneering captain can build turrets to help guard the portal.

-Make it so a science captain can actually take the portal offline for a few minutes, timing subject to balance etc.

-When the final boss happens, make it so that tac captains can target the tholaron capaciter as shes charging but before she fires with a chance to knock it offline for a bit.

There are tons of little things that can be done to make STFs more engaging. I agree that the timees should be gotten rid of as they only lead to people having to be obsessed with DPS.

For those that will say this will make STFs way to easy, how about this.... Instead of recieving injuries AFTER you blow up, what if you recieved them as your hull statted dropping and they fixed as your repaired?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
06-03-2012, 01:45 AM
And a idea for Cure: make nanites also shielded with those green forcefields. First you must take forcefields down, then destroy nanites, and then you can either kill the Cube and make a game harder (Raptors spawning from the remaining two Cubes) or let a Eng captain in a Crusier to disable it so it cannot spawn more BoPs. If they disable Shipyard under the Cube, they must stay within 10 km to it and it won't spawn any ships. Of course the Cube will shoot at them all the time, so that's where tanking builds would come in handy.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
06-03-2012, 05:19 AM
i find the idea to add an option for each class (like they exist allready in other missions) very interesting.

for instance: a sci ship can temporarely interrupt the healing beams of the generators, or they can render the temporal gate inactive for some time, that opens the an extended period to destroy incoming probes.
I don't think the current stf's will be redone in anyway, but i hope in future they will pu in more effort in designing encounters and stf's.
the thalaron beam is actually the only thing that was a cool boss ability

But in my opinion, passive buffs, given by any class...or ship. as they are called now the fleet buffs should be ongoing and not activateable. So that a mix of captains and ships becomes desiereable. for instance making the sensor scan, stack for the whole grp. or giving a tactical ship a buff called "coordinated attack" - giving all party members a permanent critH, or critD buff, but not the escort itself. And all cruisers a buff that enhances crew resistance, and powerlevels etc.
remember, those shouldn't stack...2 escorts wouldn't double the effect.
maybe they only work in stf's, or maybe in all grps, to further encourage people to grp up, even for solo content.


Also i have to add that tanking become viable through the implementation of the spawntime increase. As an escort captain i love it when a capable tank can hold aggro, while i can pound on the target without thinking of disengageing due to being targeted.

and the crystaline entity is such a miserable encounter, it seems after 2 years no real testing has been done with it. Even very good grps with teamchat have a hard time doing it, since one mistake can make all previous efforts meaningless. The healing is just too much and the spawnrate of the crystals are insane.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
06-11-2012, 06:01 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by trev06
A couple of ideas for KA space...

-Make it so an enigneering captain can build turrets to help guard the portal.

-Make it so a science captain can actually take the portal offline for a few minutes, timing subject to balance etc.

-When the final boss happens, make it so that tac captains can target the tholaron capaciter as shes charging but before she fires with a chance to knock it offline for a bit.

There are tons of little things that can be done to make STFs more engaging. I agree that the timees should be gotten rid of as they only lead to people having to be obsessed with DPS.

For those that will say this will make STFs way to easy, how about this.... Instead of recieving injuries AFTER you blow up, what if you recieved them as your hull statted dropping and they fixed as your repaired?
I really like these as well as szponixx's ideas. Too often in PvE, the different classes just feel like slightly off-hue flavors of the same gun-toting popsicle stick.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
06-11-2012, 07:46 PM
The timer doesn't bother me, cos I tend not to pop too often in an STF. I actually like that it makes trying to survive in some way relevant.

HOWEVER... it is a bit gimmicky.

Really, the big problem with space STFs (apart from the utter lack of really strong team content before you get to them, something I've QQd about before) is that the NPCs are just stat-padded in terms of damage and hit points. What they should to, is make their hit points and damage output less insane and give them more Abilities/Powers to compensate. That way you'd have to think about fighting them.

And don't tell me Cryptic aren't able to do that. Anyone remember when a tougher version of the D'Deridex Defender from the Vault "accidentally" got into the spawn tables for regular missions? With its RSP, FPB and stack of heals? You had to work to kill that thing. It wasn't just a case of wearing it down with DPS until it was reduced to little pieces.
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:04 PM.