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What about the smaller PVE guilds?

Discussion in 'Guilds, Circles and Warparties General' started by michii88, Apr 3, 2013.

  1. Felion

    Felion Cupcake-About-Town

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    Oh so many things that can be learnt from GW2, the good and the bad...

    I left GW2 after the patch that fixed fractal Jademaw, I was at lvl 62 on Fractal with 3 different chars, have I known it would get fixed I'd push to 80 on one of them... Anyways, was too heart broken over that so I went to other games. The point is, doing lvl 40+ fractals with 10 and 15 AR was one of the most fun things I've done in a while, the split second decision making was really, really fun. I hope W* combat has that too. After I left GW2, I kept missing its combat; other action MMOs (Tera for example) seems to promise something similar but the animation rooting really breaks up the decisions into chunks of time instead of a continuous stream, and it shows in difficult encounters. Also, some classes in GW2 have combat mechanisms that can really differentiate a good player from an average one: mesmer for example, a good one does a TON of damage through optimal phantasm and shatter setup, a bad one can do next to no damage in similar gears. And in order to do that optimal damage, one has to plan phantasm and clone setup almost one minute into the future, swapping weapons and managing CDs religiously, and be ready to adjust all actions on the fly (because clones and phantasms die and plans need to be adjusted); that mechanism made every single fight a very different fight, even if all the skills stay the same. So, learn from the good that is GW2 combat!

    Now the bad, oh the bad --- Not only is there very limited End Game in GW2, the decision to block access to later parts of fractal means that they're actually trying to block players from seeking further challenge. I certainly was very, very disappointed. The thing is, most people probably won't mind either way, and having that option open would make a lot of challenge seekers happy, so why block it? Fortunately, since W* has been very vocal about the Elder Games, and they kept saying that they wanted to give players challenges, I have my finger crossed that the same thing won't happen here.

    And actually, talking about group dynamics, I think there WERE possibilities in GW2 --- But they largely neglected it by not designing encounters hard enough to require such cooperation. For example, thief blast finisher, stealth rez as well as mobility has rarely been used to its max potential, because other than later fractals they were simply not needed. In terms of trinity, at the early stage of the game there was a lot of promise of Guardians "tanking" through blind + aegis + movement control, and water/arcane elementalists healing through water fields + evasive arcana. But guess what? They nerfed both, perhaps for the sake of "not having a trinity", which is mind boggling --- if it's interesting game play, why does it matter if it's a trinity or not? I miss the days when the group can immediately see whether if the elementalist is good or not in the first fight by how he handles healing/buffing and doing damage in optimal setup. But in the end instead of encouraging these power plays, GW2 decided to nerf everyone into mediocrity. It's another lesson that can be learnt by W*: having design philosophy is wonderful and needed in many cases, but if something different but interesting blooms into existence, please allow it to fruit!

    On the note of tanking though, I'm not certain about this, but just a thought: perhaps allowing a certain degree of randomness in aggro would be something good. If all an esper ever does is stand at distance casting heals and only watch out for things on the ground, it wouldn't be as fun as say, if the boss would from time to time target the esper such that he would need to quickly make some survival decisions. I arrived at this thought from comparing GW2 to Tera group combat --- Being a water elementalist (before EA was nerfed) was a lot more fun than being a priest simply because of the intensity of the combat. I wasn't only supposed to heal heal heal, but I actually needed to plan things out and squeeze out the time to perform my healing combo on others in between aoe and boss chasing me.
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  2. A Game of Scones

    A Game of Scones New Cupcake

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    I feel that the "stand here and dps and move out of fire" impression that a lot of people get from raids stems from the homogenization and simplification of classes and roles (done mostly for the sake of smaller raid content).

    They look at the mechanics of the boss fight and see only "move out of fire" because there is very little innate challenge left in playing many classes, and due to homogenization very few unique interactions between an encounter's mechanics and your abilities..

    They see the "dps" portion as a short break from following mechanics, rather than a rare moment where the skill of your support players allows them to align their buffs so that your dps players can pump out as much dps as possible.

    The argument that "one person dying has less of an impact in larger raids" stems from this era of homogenization. One person dying does not have less of an impact if they are the only person in your raid performing their specific role, or that if multiple of those people were required to make an encounter work. There have been points in time where class and spec diversity was wide enough that in 25 man raids you would have less than a handful of people performing a specific duty at any point in time.

    For example, a raid group may consist of:
    2-3 tanks (All of which are, obviously, necessary and cannot die)

    4-5 raid healers (With which each death causes exponential increases in difficulty due to the requirement for proper mana management)

    3 tank healers (Again with the above, only more crucial emphasis on not dying because while you can start shedding certain members of a raid as the encounter nears completion, you can never lose tanks)

    1-3 Mana Batteries (Necessary, although may occasionally swap out to heal or dps depending the nature of the fight)

    4-5 Buffers/Debuffers/Dispellers/Support (People who may not individually do lots of damage, but help your dps reach their maximum potential damage or are generally just helpful. Most of these people are individually necessary, and the death of any one of them can lead to almost crippling DPS loss. Note that this group does NOT include people who have to perform specific roles for a particular encounter.)

    5-10 DPS (Depending on how mechanically forgiving the encounter is, or if people are required to do extra things like kite, AoE, etc.)

    The only group you can really afford to lose anybody from is the DPS group, and since many encounters were fairly tight numerically losing more than two would lead to an enrage or your healers running out of mana.
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  3. lusciifi

    lusciifi Cupcake-About-Town

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    Personally i dont find the positional awareness when dodging waves + breath on akylios to be any different then the stuff you have to dodge in GW2. The only thing that makes it complicated is trying to filter through the noise (the million flashy spell effects going off) to determine what is actually relevant information.

    If anything i would say that the high end fights in rift require more positional awareness simply because the consequences are that much higher.

    Now i want to speak to the gear check thing you keep mentioning. Many i have talked to feel that gear checks are a negative thing, that they artificially gate progression. While this is true, they also allow for a wider variety of guilds to complete content while at the same time providing an extreme challenge for the server firsting/top guilds. Raids should be tuned so that when the content is first released and no one yet has much gear from the instance the later bosses in the instance are considered impossible to beat by the devs. The progression race then becomes, who can clear X boss with the smallest amount of gearing. Maybe once you have all the gear from the previous bosses spread across the raid its trivial but for those top guilds that clear it in the first couple weeks/month its damn hard.
  4. Ego13

    Ego13 Cupcake-About-Town

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    Agreed, on all levels, Felion, I was right there with you initially when there was actually variety and not every ele and engi was a bunker build because it was the best idea, etc.. I'm not saying that the *trinity is the best idea ever, just that it does help define things and lets you concentrate on a role. Although if they handled loot like they did in GW2 I would be ecstatic. I never cared what anyone else got, however, I was always willing to give up what I had to someone that could use it.

    Can we please let this drop? We won't agree and you're missing the point. If you're "dodging" waves in Rift, it's not dodging as you simply walk to the right spot. There is no *quick decision*, you see the tell-tell signs coming, you move. No challenge...at all.
  5. lusciifi

    lusciifi Cupcake-About-Town

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    Exactly this, a raid can only be as hard as the class you have to play. If a class literally only had one button to play it would be easy no mater the mechanics. But managing a rotation like defilemance from rift AND following mechanics was what maid raiding a challenge and a joy. An extreme example this is EQ2 where i swear less then 1% of people actually understand how to play their class. Raids were increadibly simple most of the time. But because of the huge skill cap required in managing 20+ dps abilities and weaving in auto attacks the raids were still challenging, if for the wrong reason.
  6. lusciifi

    lusciifi Cupcake-About-Town

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    I still don't understand how you can say that dodging anything in GW2 is any different then in other MMOS. Attacks are either a telegraphed, or b designed to be healed/tanked through. If mechanics can literally never be hard in your eyes, then how would one ideally structure a raid boss for you?
  7. Ego13

    Ego13 Cupcake-About-Town

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    It's timing. It's ALL about timing.

    Making a decision based on something that's telegraphed 10-30 seconds before it happens isn't challenging. Using abilities for their effect on the battle rather than their place in a rotation. This is why I primarily play healers because there's it at least makes it slightly more dynamic because you have to keep all the people alive that didn't notice that HUGE GLARING EYE that told you he's about to burn your face off in 32.8 seconds and all you have to do is move 10 ft to be safe.
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  8. A Game of Scones

    A Game of Scones New Cupcake

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    To be fair, Rift did have several fairly difficult encounters that extended beyond "move out of the way of telegraphed ability". Many of them were the sorts of mechanics that, when you watch a well coordinated guild who has spend hours practicing, look quite simple but were in actuality ball-bustingly difficult if screwed up. In the case of many of these mechanics, having an actual twitch reaction "dodge" ability would be much more forgiving.

    As pretty much any veteran Starcraft/DotA/LoL player can tell you, there is just as much skill in understanding the nature, positioning, and math behind a fight on a macro scale as there is in the ability to react on a micro scale.
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  9. salazar

    salazar Cupcake-About-Town

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    wauw. please describe one encounter in the history of mmo you have found difficult
  10. Ego13

    Ego13 Cupcake-About-Town

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    Agreed, very much so.

    However, in most games, sadly your abilities with stuns/interrupts/silences and things of that nature don't work. Just bad design imo. You should be able to create a raid that encompasses these abilities, doesn't require them, but allows them to work without trivializing them. Further than that, when you're paying attention to ALL the mechanics you already described, then timing your abilities, managing your cooldowns AND also managing your dodge-resource that just adds another couple levels to it.

    I'm not arguing there have been challenging encounters, but as you outlined in your own description, the challenge is more getting people to do it right, as I stated long ago the limiting factor is always the lowest common denominator in your group. The one or two guys that stay in the <REDACTED> long enough to turn into bombs that wipe the raid.
  11. lusciifi

    lusciifi Cupcake-About-Town

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    I actually prefer healing for the challenge myself. I like not having to stick to a rotation and being able to react to the rest of the raid. But, i think saying 10-30 sec is a little silly. Okay it wasn't twitch skill but nothing in challenging raids gives you near that much time to react. On average i would say its more like 1-2 depending on the fight.
  12. Ego13

    Ego13 Cupcake-About-Town

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    That's my point...I can't. The hardest encounters in my history are other players which is why I PK/PvP so much. PvE is generally laughable and simplistic when compared with PvP.
    BUT
    I feel WS has the potential to address that.

    There is no game where your character can move any equitable amount of distance in 1-2 seconds based on player movement speeds outside of blink mechanics. Yes you might have 1-2 seconds to react, but overall you have at least 10 seconds total to get somewhere. The only time you have the mechanics you speak of are in Heroic 25 man raids where everyone is running a timer to be in the right spots at the right times, which nullifies all of the challenge.
  13. lusciifi

    lusciifi Cupcake-About-Town

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    Beyond the ability to active dodge, which actually can make some mechanics more trivial. I dont see how anything Ive seen from WS will lead to new raid design. I hope to be proven wrong and get the most brutal raid content ever designed but i have my doubts. But like i have expressed to me, more of the same isn't a bad thing.

    I'm not talking about the time it takes to move somewhere, when i say 1-2 sec i mean if you don't start moving/interrupting/casting X by this point in time you don't have time to do the mechanic.
  14. A Game of Scones

    A Game of Scones New Cupcake

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    This is the difference between PvP and PvE, and is another fundamental misunderstanding. The challenge of PvE comes from the puzzle and attempting to make an encounter work out favorably given the pieces you have, where as PvP in MMO's is about gaining an advantage over the other person. If you are comparing PvP encounters to PvE encounters that have already been figured out completely or have been out-geared to lessen the difficulty curve, you are making an erroneous comparison.

    However, I will agree that immersing oneself in an average PvP experience is far more taxing and educational than an average PvE experience. PvP is harder and makes you a better player than PvE usually does, but that does not mean that PvE content is not challenging when it is attempted in the way it is meant to be.
  15. Felion

    Felion Cupcake-About-Town

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    Ultimately, everything is about seeing certain signs/pattern and reacting in some ways, in life and in game. Making the claim that "oh mob is doing this animation on this telegraph, which means I'll be hit in about 0.8 seconds if I don't move out of this area by then" is pattern recognition on several levels (recognizing the animation and its approximate duration; recognizing the animation means an attack; recognizing an attack is bad for you). Now, without any motivation, "being hit" is just a phenomenon, not a challenge, challenge means that there's a price or penalty attached to the pattern recognition. And if there's nothing that one can do to escape that penalty, it's also not a challenge, it's just ... getting hit and die. So there are three parts: pattern recognition, penalty/price, and decision making in accordance.

    Hence, simply having the decision window decreased (active combat) would allow a lot more possibilities. It would allow decision on a finer scale. Instead of breaking up decision windows by cast bars or animations or running speed, in active combat you have the choice to make a decision at any given moment, and the decisions you make tend to be more powerful. So instead of having 1 to 2 seconds of thinking time in between every single decision, you're now free to do very fast decision making in many possible ways --- This is the first point that increases challenge, but it wouldn't be necessary if not for the next two points.

    Having to run out of the bad stuff every 1 minute is different from having to dodge/block every 2 seconds (mob attack); in the first case, the pattern that you'd need to recognize is that "once in a while the boss does this big blast and I need to move out of it", the pattern in the second case is watching the animation of the boss like a hawk. Those are patterns on different levels, in the first case any finer patterns need not to be worried about (when you're doing your dps rotation in WoW you don't need to look at boss swing), but not in the second case. Precisely because you're given the ability to react on a split second, the game would require you to recognize finer details, patterns on all levels --- More requirement on pattern recognition, second point that increases challenge, which won't be a "requirement" if not for the next point.

    Continue with the above example. If getting hit means next to nothing, even if you recognize the pattern it means very little, there's no need for decisions. But if your reaction means life and death (or, losing significant dps/aggro if you play too safe), you'd need to dodge or block or go immune. Now if moving away or dodging doesn't prevent you from dying anyways, there's also no point. So the third point --- Higher penalty/reward increases challenge.

    Now, if the challenge is TOO challenging, then it's just frustrating, but that's really subjective. We're not talking about that, we're just talking about what makes one game more challenging than the other, particular in regards to active combat vs traditional combat. We can apply this theory to things like PvP vs PvE too, players are harder to predict because it's harder to recognize a pattern --- Or I should say, it's harder to recognize a pattern that is correctly enforced. That makes it more challenging. But players tend to hit a lot softer than bosses, so there's a little consolation in the penalty department --- You don't need to dodge everything, just the important things like cc and big damage. And losing a little bit of dps in PvP does not penalize you as much as PvE. If done a certain way, there can be PvE contents that give people more of a headache than PvP --- I've experienced that in Diablo III, and 3 manning lvl 60 fractal in GW2 too. In those situations if you tell me that you can switch those mobs to players, I'd gladly accept --- yes, mobs, not boss. Because I needed to treat each mob like a boss.

    The bigger picture is this: organisms receive outside information, process it, decide on an action based on self desires, and then enforce that action. Preferably, in a very fun difficult encounter, the cycle would appear at different levels simultaneously: not only do you have to watch for enemy attack animation, you have to watch for your own CDs, watch for positioning, watch for enrage timer, watch for big attacks, watch for everything. And of course, once you spot a pattern, you make your decisions (the time you're allowed to think about that decision depends on how long the cycle is), and act it out (unless it's difficult to press keys correctly, this is generally not a problem in MMOs). Active combat shines here: because it adds a very frequent cycle on top of what traditional combat has, this cycle then ripples its effect into higher cycles.

    Conclusions: Active combat CAN provide more challenge. Obviously it means nothing if there's inappropriate design, whether if you can dodge or not, whether if mobs move randomly or not, all means nothing if everyone can just tank and spank. But the possibility is there for active combat.
  16. lusciifi

    lusciifi Cupcake-About-Town

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    First off let me say that its refreshing to encounter a forum community that spends more time actually discussing things instead of trolling/shouting at on another.

    I can understand how active combat will make solo play more engaging. If you actually need to dodge out of the way of atacks and have a limited amount of time to do so of course this is going to be harder. However in a raid environment, most people wont have to deal with being attacked by the boss. The tank will have aggro and while they might have to watch for attack animations and actively dodge things the majority of players in the raid will have the same things as always to worry about. That is moving out of the fire, interrupting, stacking ect ect. At least from what I've seen in the limited footage they have put out, most ranged attacks have pretty obvious telegraphs. So am i just missing something about the active combat or will it have a limited impact on raiding.
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  17. Felion

    Felion Cupcake-About-Town

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    It depends on how aggro works I guess, and boss mechanisms. Even in raiding, I can foresee that at least some bosses can be very active and keep the whole raid on its toes. But ultimately, I think the very definition of raiding and its requirement on cooperation means that active combat won't be as big of an impact as it is for soloing. Nevertheless, it's for sure going to change things in more ways than one: due to active combat, there's a real mobility difference between classes. And because of that mobility difference, some classes may be able to go completely glass cannon while other classes may have to watch out for survival. Or maybe this additional mobility allows some very nimble players to get into dangerous areas to do huge spike damage before swiftly jumping out. The possibility is still endless!
  18. Ego13

    Ego13 Cupcake-About-Town

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    Let me start by saying, to the comment about not understanding, i understand and see the fundamental difference in pve and pvp i just don't think that they should have to be so different.

    Raiding is definitely more strategy and planning based, but you could add in random variables to the encounters that may be known just not on a specific timer. I strongly believe that would dramatically help with the challenge.
  19. lusciifi

    lusciifi Cupcake-About-Town

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    I think i remember a dev comment that raids would have some variation from week to week to keep them always challenging. I think that's a step in the right direction. Eliminating strict timers for abilities is a good thing, but the devs have to be careful to not have a boss that can use all of its abilities in quick succession. You don't want a case where a boss uses its stack up mechanic at the same time as its spread out one.
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  20. Naunet

    Naunet Well-Known Cupcake

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    One of my favorite things about boss mechanics in TERA (aside from the sheer thrill of warrior tanking, which I love passionately to this day) are the secondary aggro mechanics. The dps and healer are not safe just because they're away from and/or behind the boss. The Queen fight is really the pinnacle of their boss design in this regard, though good god I wish they made the first phase skippable (even if it is a great challenge for the healer - all that crazy kiting!). Here's a good video showing it (though like all vids, it skips to the second phase of the fight - the first phase is a nuking of her tank thing, with a bunch of positional mechanics, while the healer kites and kills a <REDACTED> ton of adds): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cA1jd7fP38c

    So yea, secondary aggro mechanics help a lot to spice things up.
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