Animation Clipping(combat)

Id like to talk about how an mmorpg can succesfully create an active-reactive, action packed combat, and what could lead to a horrible result. Please devote time to carefully read if you are not familiar with the 2 mmorpgs which I will use to make my case.

So now, ill compare 2 mmorpgs with action combat.

Tera Online had an actiom combat in which the classes performed abulities on cool down with beautiful animations(at least the first 3 years...) and there were alsi decision making reaction moves such as:
Roll dodge
Block
Counter attack(stun, root etc)
Leap over attacking enemy
Leap away from attacking enemy.

Scenario 1.
Player A swings great sword to hit player B for X dmg.
Player B pulls arrow back and shoots arrow in player As face, dealing Y dmg but copes a sword blow for X and dies.

Scenario 2
Player A swings great sword to hit player B for X dmg.
Player B pulls arrow back in order to shoot at player A for Y dmg, however decides to roll dodge. Player B deals no dmg to player A since the animation of the attack was cancelled to roll dodge that swinging sword. Player B takes no damage from player A.

This is how Tera Online managed to creare an action, active-reactive combat in which the player has to make decisions in order to beat an enemy tank and enemy healer or an enemy roque.

Now Id like to talk about ESO and their "fast paced actiom combat"

In Eso there are no cooldowns on abilities.
You can spam the same aoe ability over and over.
You can spam the same heal ability over and over.
Eso has a 0.7 second cooldown per action.

Every 0.7s a player can use:
Normal atk
followed by an ability which will cancell the animation of the light atk, but the light atk will still deal dmg
followed by block or dodge which will cancel the animation of the ability but the ability will still deal dmg.

This results in every ability that takes longer than a split of a second to register to be useless because Eso players want to animation cancel 3 actions withing 0.7s
This means that only quick abilities are viable for combat.

Another side effect of this design is that tanks which are supposed to deal less dmg than a greatsword warrior (or a dualwield roque) deal more dmg quicker.
Why?
Because the longsword ability cannot be cancelled out within 0.7s.
Example:
Normal attack with greatsword followed by a slow ability with greatsword cancels the animation of the normal attack, still dealing normal atk dmg, however ot takes longer than 0.7s to activate.

The SwordShield ability is a lot quicker.
SwordShield can animation cancel within 0.7s
Example:
Normal atk with swordShield, followed by a swordShield ability (which are all extremelly quick) that cancels the animation of the normal atk but still, the normal atk deals dmg, followed by bash for more dmg(oh... the tanks get bonus dmg when bashing, dealing more dmg than warriors) which cancells the animation of the swordShield ability, which still deals dmg.

Another problem is that ranged classes in eso benefit from animation cancelling because they can clip normal attacks and spells from a distance, making them machine guns.

Needless to say that all this animation clipping results in a very ugly looking combat. The characters look for weird and their movements unatural.

The developers defended this as "fast paced action combat". 
The players say that this system adds more skill ful combat.

I say that Tera Online made combat a lot more skillful without glitchy looking movements.
Tera Online did not eliminate 70% of their active abilities because they had a longer casting time.
Tera online had true action reaction combat in which a player could judge a situation and use the appropriave ability or the appropriate movement/position, rather than a pre determined ROTATION of glitch animations that clip each other, yet still deal dmg, regardless if the enemy is a nuker, or tank.

In eso players say that animation cancelling adds skill.
It did not. Everybody could learn how to animation cancel within half an hour. 
And within half an hour every new player would unslot all of their abilities in order to use the abilities that are cancelled better within 0.7s. Just like eeeeeverybody else.



I played Tera Online from 2013 to 2014. 
I played Eso from 2015 until now.
I still believe that Tera Online did a better job than Eso in creating a modern mmorpg action combat based on situation judgement, action and reaction.
All Eso has done is nerf or buff abilities(active and passive) every 3-6 months creating/switching the meta back and forth.

I'd like the people that will test AoC soon to use the information here snd with their own judgement help AoC create the best combat yet.

Comments

  • \o/ Poof like magic it returns!
    Have a wonderful conversation!
  • Personally, I hated Tera and love Eso's combat much more, the way it worked gave it more of a priority system (at least for stamblades). I don't know why but I just hate Tera in general. This is biased of course.
  • I found black desert online combat much more captivating than the above.

    In bdo there were skills which had optimal follow up skills.
    These were skill flows. Mostly they worked by flowing and attack that moved u sideways to another attack moving sideways. Forward to forward. Spinning to spinning.

    Then there were skills that cancelled the previous animation. Sideways attack ani cancel to forward.

    Accelerated flow which meant that certain skills had faster animation after certain skill. Meaning optimal dps in the dispense of choice and reactivity.

    Skills had cooldowns.

    Downsides:
    I think they removed the requirement to aim at some point and arrows pretty much autoaimed to the target. The aim cursor only points the direction of attack anymore reducing skill cap.
    RNG cc.
    Oneshotting others.

  • I found black desert online combat much more captivating than the above.

    In bdo there were skills which had optimal follow up skills.
    These were skill flows. Mostly they worked by flowing and attack that moved u sideways to another attack moving sideways. Forward to forward. Spinning to spinning.

    Then there were skills that cancelled the previous animation. Sideways attack ani cancel to forward.

    Accelerated flow which meant that certain skills had faster animation after certain skill. Meaning optimal dps in the dispense of choice and reactivity.

    Skills had cooldowns.

    Downsides:
    I think they removed the requirement to aim at some point and arrows pretty much autoaimed to the target. The aim cursor only points the direction of attack anymore reducing skill cap.
    RNG cc.
    Oneshotting others.

    I found BDO combat animations very dissapointing for such a hyped game.
    The movements looked like photographs of the character in action, gliddered with massive lights and colours.
    All in all it was a let down.
  • ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited August 2018
    What I've raken away from this us that there is a mechanical as well as an asthetic requirement to action combat, and when you sacrifice one to the other, the combat inevitably suffers.  A similar thing occured in FFXIV when certain animations started becoming too flashy for their own good, causing mechanics to be hidden and deaths more likely, chaining animations together on a bard(who used a bow and arrow)gave the goofy look of someone constantly pulling the bowstring to aim, but never firing because the next action would start before the previous action could fire the arrow.  On the other end of thr spectrum, receiving attacks felt underwhelming as well, with most barely registering any response from the one being attacked.

    It is a difficult balance, but the one I've liked the most was from games like White Knight chronicles, and Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night, which made actions clear and made animations depending on the direction the attack came from and how hard they were hit.
  • ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited August 2018
    The movements looked like photographs of the character in action, gliddered with massive lights and colours.
    All in all it was a let down.

    Perhaps overall but animation cancel, flow and acceleration were the properties Im trying to emphasize.
    They were the properties that made combat fast, reactive, and fun.

     The flashes and pretty much everything else in the game is 1/10.

     Ps forgot to mention that if u used ani cancel some of the skills damage u cancelled would not be applied.
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