Kero's page

81 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists.

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Caldeathe Baequiannia wrote:
The word "zerg" tends to get used a lot lately, and some of the uses feel like they are straying into derogatory territory. There is a war going on in the game, and in war, bringing the most people to the battle that you can manage is not cheating.

I'm also surprised by this use, but I tend to blame it on me being an MMO-newbie. From my experience with StarCraft I always thought "zerging" involved sacrificing sound economic development to quickly push out as many cheap, uniform troops as possible to overwhelm the enemy by sheer numbers. When a group builds up a very strong economic base at the very front edge of technological development and is able to field a large group of diverse and very well equipped players not because they sacrificed something but because they are attracted to the group's play style, I don't see anything zerg-like here. There's no hive mind, no uniform low-level masses, just large-scale success :).

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I don't think anyone with experience in alpha actually realized they were "broken". And I still don't think they are "broken" anymore than all the other mobs - it's just the sh*tty AI that is the same for all the mobs: some intial attack depletes their stamina really fast and then it spams the lowest stamina consuming attack they have as soon as stamina regenerates enough. But that is true for all the mobs in all escalations (and non-escalation mobs, too, as well as even Thornguards) and has been true for as long as I've been around in early Alpha. For bandit recruit archers it's their low-damage interrupt, for Ustalavian Prelates it happens to be their debuff spell. None of the mobs use their much more effective higher stamina-cost attacks (such as stun attacks) after their initial stamina depletion.

(Edit: I should probably add: ...unless you force their stamina to regenerate enough by staying out of their reach. That is possible against melee attackers but rarely against spell casters or other ranged)

This issue has been reported numerous times in Alpha and has always received the dev reply that improving the AI is not high on their list of priorities. Why this should suddenly be considered an exploit is beyond me. The only way to not "exploit" this is to avoid PvE altogether.

Most people farming them probably DID realize they are the easiest of the T2 escalations within the current constellation of mostly farming with longbows, hence they are the most popular T2 escalation to farm. But the fact that some chose to farm other T2 escalations instead (out of ignorance or because those were closer to home) and now realize that that may have been less than optimal does not make that an exploit.

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Diella, where is the big advantage in having 3 XP-gaining Characters on one account, compared to 3 seperate accounts or 1 DT account and one regular? To me, having multiple accounts seems to be better than multiple chars on one account, as this allows trading between the characters.

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Nihimon wrote:

In Alpha and so far in EE, I have personally witnessed folks who Applied and were Accepted into our Company, but didn't help us gain Tower Capture Points afterwards.

I don't know if this is intentional.

The same is true the other way around: a newbie was afk at another settlement's core six tower, gathering unwanted points for our company. He was kicked from the company, but could still collect points for it. He was eventually killed and respawned outside the tower, still afk.

Server downtime seems to be the time when these issues are updated...

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Better late than never... After the ridiculous amount of goblin harvesting that has been going on, this is a long overdue decision.
Regarding robes, the starter versions that woul drop are no better for a mage than the starter rags every new character starts out with. If you'really hurting for those, you can just create a new toon, trade its clothes away and delete it again...

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@sspitfire1: I recommend you do not rise to baiting and give snap back responses like that. Nothing good ever comes from that. Take a deep breath, relax and if you feel the urgent need to respond to someone who's displaying a particularly disturbing lack of understanding, just sit back, shake your head, smile, think "what a douche" and calmly move on.

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Nihimon wrote:
@Kero, I don't think it's possible to create a technological solution to this problem.

Maybe not. But removing the desired loot from easily bot-farmable targets removes any and all incentive to bot-farm those. If you still want the loot present in vast quantities, at least put it somewhere where getting it requires actual gameplay. If bot-farming is made the best and most effective way to get these resources, you disadvantage everyone who doesn't do it. Talk about wrong incentives...

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DeciusBrutus wrote:

Tier 1 recipes need to have an infusion early on, and they need to be easy to get later on.

And there's and easy way to mess with the easy bot: attack it once during downtime, getting targeted, and then sit out of range until they die.

Out of curiosity, how encumbered were you after 12 hours?

If T1 recipes were meant to be easily universally available, why make them drops at all? They are one of the early reasons to engage in PvE, not to start bot-farming.

I'm not entirely sure how your getting targeted is meant to kill me, but my bot dropped its active target once every 5 seconds, because of a bug where sometimes it would not correctly lose targeting of a dead goblin until its body despawned about 30 sec later. This may cause me to sometimes have to take damage one extra time from a goblin, but was still survivable. The fact that this also makes it more difficult for other players to distract me for an extended period of time was an unintended side effect.

I was very much over-encumbered. I dropped all armor, weapons, implements, as well as some armor scraps, broken weapons and coins before I could move again.

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Thod wrote:
But that brings up something else that occured to me. Will the macro carry on once you get killed? Because you will spawn inside the next settlement and then start attacking Thornguards - and we know how that will turn out.

It will carry on. All it does is repeatedly send a few key strokes, with no feedback from the game, whatsoever, going into it. Since it doesn't actively target anyone, it would only attack Thornguards if attacked by them first, however, and if that were to ever happen, it won't matter much, anyway..

<kabal> Bunibuni wrote:
And what was your encumbrance like after you did your auto-farming, Kero? All that armor you picked up must have really added to your encumbrance.

Yes, waaaaaay over-encumbered. But the entire farming was done at range while standing still. In the end (after being either killed by the goblins after losing connection or after reconnecting and being killed by the goblins in the process) I was teleported to the shrine, where an alt e.g. could have just aproached to trade whatever I wanted to keep and trash the rest. Or even just trash all the relatively worthless armor, etc. and just keep as many of the recipes, coins and resources as possible to slowly slide to the bank.

<kabal> Bunibuni wrote:
If it floats your boat to do something like that and you somehow find enjoyment in not actually playing the game but automatically farm, that's fine for you. You get bored with all those low level recipes, sell them, I might buy them if you go to a town where I would look for them but you have to go to someplace to sell them. And just because you have gotten all that copper, what do you do with it if no one has bothered to go out into the world to gather stuff and then actually make stuff?

Where you got the impression that this somehow "floats my boat", I don't know. It doesn't, in fact I rather worry that it'll sink the game economy and my boat with it. Some of these resources and coins are meant to be rare, the economy somewhat depends on that scarcity to encourage lively trade. That won't work at all, if they are readily available because they can be easily farmed. Because if they can be, people will do it. It won't be me, but I'm probably not the only one who can figure something like this out. And like you, until yesterday I also had no clue how to program a macro - apparently, it's not that hard...

Just as an aside, this auto-farming could be done in addition to playing, not instead of playing.

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Ryan Dancey wrote:

You will need to make all new characters in Early Enrollment.

We promised the Kickstarter backers that we would have a name reservation system and we don't have one. So if there's a conflict over a name, we'll resolve it by looking back at the KS pledge data, determining which pledge was received first, and awarding the desired name to that user. The other person will need to pick a new character name.

Hopefully we won't have many (or any) such issues.

Have you decided on a time frame? I.e. how long do I have to worry that some older kickstarter could come along and take one of my character names away?

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I've also spent some time harvesting plant nodes in a hill(?) hex. I believe there were a whopping total of three(!) plant nodes in the entire hex. But everytime I harvested one, another appeared somewhere. It was always exactly those three nodes.

Also, you sometimes have a node respawn right on your minimap. Never ever did I have a node respawn of a different type than what I was currently harvesting.

I believe the total number of the different kinds of node per hex (or hex type?) is currently fixed and does not change. However, I've never come close to strip-mining a hex by myself, maybe the composition of node types will change only when one type of resource is close to exhaustion. But even that seems unlikey, remember when we had all those "empty" scavenger nodes?

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Maybe it's just my lack of familiarity with the terms, but how can griefers and carebears even remotely be considered to be in the same category of "The Ugly"?

From what I gather, griefers are the scum of the gaming world, deriving pleasure from annoying and harrassing others (and their reaction to being harrassed), from the perceived safety of internet anonymity. They are the person who in real life would call in an anonymous bomb threat on an airport during the holiday season just to mess up people's traveling plans. Or light someone's car on fire during the night, if they think they can get away unnoticed. Purely destructive, harmful to the game and all players.

Carebears seem to be more or less opposite, they like to be left alone, play and build stuff by themselves and generelly despise aggressive actions against other players (and against themselves by other players). They'd probably be better off in an offline computer-RPG, where they can safely play PvE by themselves. They choose to miss out on a major portion of the game, i.e. PvP, but other than not making themselves available as opponents easily they don't harm other player's experiences. And if what they build is available to everyone, they may even enrich the game world.

While griefers are certainly something we would not like to see in the game, I think the game can easily handle quite a few carebears. In fact, many of the pure refiners/crafers would probably fall into that category to some extent, and unlike griefers they do have an important role to play in the game.

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Maybe server time, aka GMT+0/UTC, is easiest to use to avoid confusion? Everyone can see that prominently displayed in their client, and it's fairly easy to calculate when you know what GMT+X your own time zone is.

From Caldeathe's post above, I gather 7pm server time?

Edit: 6pm server time, actually. Right? :)

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Here's my 2cp:

- The instability/disconnectivity issues are still extremely bad, quite a bit worse than I had expected. Initially, we would attempt to gather at the Brighthaven Bank, but that turned out to be impossible, as even with a mere 25 or so people online in the hex at the same time, disconnects happened almost continously. Also, it quickly became impossible to even login to a character that was in BH. After having moved the event to the tower hex south of BH, that issue became a bit better, but was still very much present. My participation in the battle was ultimately cut short by both of my characters being unable to login in the tower hex (One of them - sadly with quite a bit of gear - disconnected upon crossing the hex line and was never able to relog, the other eventually disconnected during the battle and was never able to reconnect after, though he at least could walk around in the client while disconnected. Again, I don't think there were more than 30 player characters trying to be online in any one hex simultaneously, and certainly far less than the actual number I'd expect in a fully functioning settlement at peak time. IMHO, that's still far from MVP in its current state.

- Targeting is still a major issue. You can only either try to click-target, which is still very difficult; more so at range, against a moving target and with many players/graphic effects on screen. Or you can attempt to tab-target, but that will only cycle through all the red players, regardless whether they're on your team; which turned out to be utterly useless in PvP, imho.

- Friend-or-Foe recognition is also very difficult. We had about 6 defenders against about 8 attackers and we had agreed beforehand to change our armor colors to red and blue, respectively. Still, it was often difficult to tell a friendly cleric running towards you from an attacker. Being dropped from the party via disonnects, the difficulty to quickly target someone to at least check his name, as well as the precolored armor being destroyed upon using up its durability didn't help much either. I have no idea on how this could be fixed without floating names overhead, but in bigger PvP battles (again, this was only 6-vs-8), this needs to be changed somehow.

- The inability to target red characters with heals, even when they're in your own party is another issue, as Dazyk pointed out above. As with the target issue above, the aggressor flag is just not a useful way to discriminate friend from foe. In PvP-battles involving multiple players, some players from either team will end up flagged as aggressor, unless the defending team refrains from striking back until every attacker including buffers/healers is red (in which case they'd mostly be wiped out). This cannot be used sensibly for either tab-targetting or to decide who can be harmed or healed and who cannot, imho.

Overall, I still had fun while it lasted, but I'm still seeing multiple troubling issues. The stability definitely needs to be improved significantly to become MVP, but I'm sure GW is acutely aware of that. In fact, Lisa Stevens was there for a while and saw the problems we had with even such a relatively small gathering.

Once that is fixed and we can get maybe 50+ people online in Brighthaven safely at the same time, I'd still advise to either
a)start EE quickly and maybe delay the WotT and husk looting, until the PvP-issues outlined above have been fixed, or
b) (this would also be the option if you cannot get a good handle on the stability thing) stop Alpha, take your time to do a major overhaul of the insufficient parts and do a complete cold start in 6 months or so, with a more stable system and obviously noticeable improvements.

Option b) may be harsh, but it may still be much better than keeping this alpha (for which enthusiasm has peaked in October and which has since been in steep and steady decline) going for much longer. I see even long-time supporters selling accounts and moving elsewhere, while server population appears extremely low at all times (you have the statistics, but I'd be surprised to hear about more than 50 people being online server-wide at any one time in the past few weeks). That cannot bode well.

That said, I'd still prefer Option a) and hope to be able to start EE soon :).

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While I'm fully in favour of helping Harad and his Atlas and may well join or at least support the Diviners, I kind of worry that the shrine locations may well change and doing this now will have little use later on...

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Diego Rossi wrote:
Freeholder training is available only in crafting settlements. From what I got in EE the settlement training will be available only to people from that settlement, so we will not be capable to train those skills unless we are part of a company linked to a crafting settlement, and that mean not having access to the fighting feats.

This was the case during previous versions of alpha, but as far as I know, that is no longer the case. Your own settlement's level determines how high a level you can train ANY feat. Some of these you can train at your own settlement. But you can also train at other settlements you can get to, regardless of alliances, etc. You only need to get to the trainer physically and the trainer need to be able to train up to the level you require.

If I belong to the cleric/figther settlement of Brighthaven, home of TEO, and certainly able to support level 9 training, and I want to train my spellbook proficiency 2 feat, I can do that at ANY settlement where that level of training is available. Even if they are hostile to TEO. The only thing that could possibly prevent me from doing so is hostile PCs (or NPCs) preventing me from physically reaching the trainer.

That's the way it's going to be in early EE. Later on, mechanics are intended to limit accessability to trainers (or possibly charge non-members for trainer use or whatever). But that's in the (far?) future.

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The one thing from the roadmap that I not only think is not MVP, but that I think will actually harm the MVP is the change in chat channels, mostly the removal of a general chat channel.

Player population at the start of EE is going to be fairly small, probably smaller than what was originally planned for. And they're going to be spread out over a vast area. It is going to feel veeeery lonely out there without a general chat channel, and even more so during the off-peak hours. In alpha, we've frequently seen people willing to run more than a few hexes just to trade for something or to group up to fight an escalation or whatever. And these activities were almost always coordinated via general chat.

Sure, TEO will be able to coordinate on our mumble, and other groups will have their voice chats, too. But intergroup cooperation is going to suffer, imho, even though it is of vital importance especially in the beginning and should rather be encouraged. Not to mention players not yet attached to any group. Player retention past the already paid-for time is going to be difficult as it is, don't make it harder still by making the game seem artificially even emptier than it is!

I think it would be better to leave the general chat channel in place and only remove it once the population has passed a certain mark and/or we see a major increase in spam in general chat.

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Ryan Dancey wrote:

I can't see a good way out of that box. We want you to auto target when someone hits you and you have no target. The fact that the attacker is a PC should not matter - PvP will be a common event.

If your friendly is hitting you with AoE, we can't tell the difference between someone not paying attention, someone being a jerk, and someone actually trying to kill your PC.

I guess we could install a "never auto target PCs" option, but that leaves you wide open to PvP strikes. (and all those kinds of switches put molasses into the combat resolution system so I hestiate to say even that could be done without the cure being wors than the disease.)

One good way out of this box seems to be to always assume party members are friendly, even if they're red to you. Assume any harmful effect on you by a party member is by accident. Thus the system should a) not auto target or tab target party members even if they damage you, and b) if they end up targeted via mouse click or the F-keys (which you want to allow for beneficial effects), prevent any non-beneficial effect, such as previously queued attacks to fire on a party member.

Later, a switch could be added to deliberately turn this off, but what I describe above would probably be the go-to setting for almost everyone. If you want to fight someone, you're just very unlikely to be in a party with him. In the rare event that a party member turns on you and deliberately tries to harm you by including you in his AoEs, without a switch you'll have to kick him manually from the party or leave it yourself. Still, I can only very rarely see this becoming a problem. IMHO, this would solve many of the problems we've experienced quite easily and without any serious drawbacks.

This leaves the problem of the too small party size, so in these "raid groups" not everyone can be in one party. In my (and apparently quite a few other's) opinion, party size should be increased to like 10 or 12, but that's probably a seperate issue.

Still, even with a 6-person party, assuming that your party members are friendly to each other seems prudent and hopefully fairly easy to implement.