The New Bar which needs to be met regarding Combat/movement Animations & Graphics.

ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
edited September 2018 in Ashes of Creation Design
First let me preface this with the reason I am posting this is because I desperately want a well designed Non P2W, in depth PvP MMO to come along to save the genre... not to be a critical jerk. I'm really hoping that Ashes of Creation will be that game as it's the closest I've seen and because Steven, an ArcheAge veteran is behind the wheel. 

That being said it's becoming clear that Movement/Combat Animation and graphcis quality are starting to be 2 of the most important things a game can have now.  The prime example/reason for this is Black Desert going Full Pay 2 Win during their NA/EU "Remaster" launch yet their daily active players have gone up vs gone down. 

What's funny about this is that at least in my opinion Black desert really only does 2 things better than any other MMO out there... And that is their Graphics and combat system (not to be confused with PvP balance. or fun PvE... just the combat animations and input key combos used to fire off skills.) You maybe can throw in their node empire system as an honorable mention but other MMOs such as ArcheAge, ESO, Dark Age of Camalot, WoW and many others, offer much more in depth/well crafted Story, questing, PvE, PvP, Lifeskill and Crafting experiences.... You take away Black desert's combat and Graphics and you have an incredibly shallow MMO that would be as dead as the Bless servers without them.

Just like most guys can't take their eyes off the hottest girl in the bar even though she might have a vapid personality, likewise players are entranced by good graphics and good combat. 

I'm writing this because I just saw the latest Action Combat video and while it was a big improvement from the previous tab target only system I think it has little a ways to go.  Right now Ashes of Creation's Combat and graphics seems like it is halfway between ESO and BDO's Graphics and combat... which is pretty good and definitely a HUGE improvement. So credit where credit is due AoC seems to be listening to the what the players want, But I fear that it may not be enough to take out BDO.... and I kinda want that to happen after being jebaited into another P2W game.  

I feel AoC is not too far off the mark tho. The graphics are pretty good but still look slightly cartoonish similar to ESO in some instances and needs to be a little bit more realistic.  The movement of characters looks great in some instances but then slows down and looks a bit blocky or exagerated others... again similar to ESO's. 

The reason for this I think is something I like to call "Shoulder Lock" and "Turret Torso". Basically they lock they camera to the shoulders of the character and their torso remains completely straight and upright and move completely independently from the waist/legs.  Both of these things combined make the character look Stiff and robotic as well as appearing to "float" as they move. 

Here is an example of "Turret Torso":


Shoulder lock is much more hard to depict in images but here is a shot of a player strafing fairly quickly while their entire body is upright. Again feet move in any direction while shoulders and torso are locked perfectly still.  


Compare this with BDO which has separate animations for sideways movement and don't lock the camera to the shoulders:
Ranger moving bow shot (notice torso matches direction of movement):

Warrior side strafing attack (notice his whole body moves with the attack due to the weight of the weapon):



Now a lot of AoC's animations are pretty good.  The blink skill, dodge rolls and dash attack skills looked great but it was harshly contrasted by slow or awkward looking shoulder locked/turret torso ranged & melee skills.  The other issue I saw with melee skills were slow and ponderous swings... like there a guy was swinging a staff around and besides suffering from "turret torso" it looked like it had the weight of a 20lb sledgehammer vs a thin dowel of wood.  Yet the next swing it was lightning fast... so again very strange inconsistancy there.  The wand animation just looked weird like I should be saying "Expecto Patronus!" or something every time I swing it lol.  It was very harry potter and it just looked weird seeing a muscular character waive a wand around like that... While some people might not have issue with it I feel a significant amount of players might shy away from using skills that require a wand because of it. Maybe a staff or scepter or skyrim style spells in hand would be better?.  The bow was pretty good in most instances as far as single shots went.... I think what I saw was great for basic or sniping attacks but again it still suffers from shoulder lock and a bit of turret torso.  

I recommend the animators and devs take an analytical look at BDO's combat input system and movement animations to see how they can make AOC's animation realistic yet fantasy and stylish at the same time and ditch that dated "shoulder lock" and "Turret Torso" look.  I'm not sure if intrepid is leveraging motion capture for animations or not but I know that BDO used quite a bit of Mo-Cap + martial artists to do the heavy lifting on most of those animations. They also used separate animations for various sideways movement and attack skills.  I feel AoC's animations could be considerably improved if they follow a similar model. 

Considering the competitive and critical nature of the market, I feel to be relevant in 2020 the graphics and animation quality need to match a certain benchmark and right now BDO holds the highest benchmark in that respect and I feel/fear that benchmark is going to become the new expectation of many players. Black Desert has proven you can have Crap content but if the world is dazzling and the combat is fluid, sexy, engaging and addictive; then people will still play that game for years and spend hundreds to thousands of dollars on it. 

That being said I feel AOC can make a better combat system by combining the animation quality and fluidity of BDO's style of combat with judicious skill cooldowns, CC breaks and separation of skills so that CC, Buffs, heals and DPS are separate skills.  The combat preview definitely showed that much of this is already in play and I'm excited to see where it ends up!

Also I feel You can have both tab targeting + free aim action combat  in the same combat system in a fairly seemless manner.  BDO for instance had a hotbar which you could slot nearly any skill into and either fire it off with the action combat key combo input or by using the hotkey.  I feel AoC could use a similar system but simply have 3-4 Hotbars just like ArcheAge had. 

You can also have both tab target and action combat at the same time.  Basically you default free look and aim just like in BDO but you can hit tab to snap your focus to a specifc target and keep hitting tab to cycle through targets.   You can also have the option to have a temporary dark souls style "soft lock on" mechanic which you could bind to a 3rd mouse button or other custom modifier key for action combat players to use to focus targets.

Again I am not being this critical to be insensitive or insulting but rather because I believe in the great potential of Ashes of Creation and I want it to be the best MMO ever made. 
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Comments

  • I found BDO’s combat to be tedious and it didn’t take me long to uninstall it.  I put in a couple weeks solid before I realized it just isn’t a fun game.  And that’s after paying far too much for cosmetics.

    ...Because yes, it’s definitely a pretty game.
  • I will take lore over graphics anyday 
  • ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited September 2018
    I agree with your remarks regarding graphics and animation, but at the same time I'm hoping it's just because the game is still way too early in development for them to polish those small details.
    It is good to bring up stuff like this though just in case.
    Jeffery did mention during the livestream before pax that animations were finished, and tbh it worried me a little bit, because, as you said, the movement still lacks impact and fluidity.

    Also agree with nagash that the lore is more important, but gameplay is also very important and neither should be neglected in favor of the other.

    Small details like these are what ends up getting overlooked because players, (I'm guilty of this), assume the developers will just work on those small polishing details later and never speak up or give feedback about them so something like a wand animation looking like the wand weighs 20 kg just passes through the cracks.
  • That is why Alpha 1 is focusing on combat :3

    Majority of what we've seen from Intrepid in game is unpolished and really is just a tease of what we will see at launch. I think what is important is seeing that there is a clear progression in the graphics from A0 to A1 and in theory it should improve -> launch and beyond. All the concept art has blown me away thus far so I'm not concerned about the devs artistic creativity. 

    The combat animation does need a lot of attention but Intrepid will be able to improve on that with community feedback through out all the testing phases.

    Intrepid are always listening- and that is good :3

  • Here’s an old video called “Graphics vs Aesthetics”.

    https://youtube.com/watch?v=5oK8UTRgvJU

    The problem with a game like BDO, and every Asian MMO I’ve ever seen, is that it has graphics but lacks aesthetics.

    Asian MMOs have high-quality visuals, but all look pretty much identical.  And they often lack variety within the game.  Another thread talking about environments complained about the fact that every location in BDO looks pretty much the same and compared it to WoW which has dated, cartoonish graphics yet can be more satisfying to experience because each area is distinct.

    Don’t fall into the trap of asking for great “graphics” when what the graphics are displaying is generic and uninspired.  We want great aesthetics and that’s what I hope to see in AoC.
  • Atama said:
    I found BDO’s combat to be tedious and it didn’t take me long to uninstall it.  I put in a couple weeks solid before I realized it just isn’t a fun game.  And that’s after paying far too much for cosmetics.

    ...Because yes, it’s definitely a pretty game.
    I'm not sure how.... Perhaps you played at launch on a class that you didn't know well?  Unawakened the combat wasn't nearly as good or as varied as it is with awakening.  Grinding on an awakened Sorceress feels like you're dancing when you have your animation cancels down and know how to manage your resources. It just takes a while to learn a class.

    That being said I do understand perhaps some of what you are referring to.  In BDO they tend to combine CC and DPS and often heals & armor buffs (in the form of super armor or frontal guard) in the same skill. They also don't have CC breaks  That can lead to the PvP combat sometimes feeling "spammy" and susceptible to 1 combos. They recognized that and removed a lot of those over powered skills but sadly still no CC breaks.

    However in games like WoW, ArcheAge or ESO CC, buffs/debuffs, heals, CC breaks and DPS were all separated into separate skills for the most part. As a result this required more strategy and counterplay when fighting.  I think AoC should keep that level of separation between skill types so it maintains strategy and counterplay but give all of the skills the same animation quality and the ability to trigger them via action combat or skill slots depending on the player's playstyle. 

    The goal is to obtain the best of both worlds.  The fast paced and visceral feeling of well animated action combat combined with the strategy and counterplay of older tab target MMOs.  

    The key is to retain the positive aspects of tab targeting while moving to a modern action combat system. In my personal experience ESO did this balance the best with their lock on system and I feel with a boost in animation quality and speed on the slower clunkier animations I feel this would be a great balance to strike

    But I wouldn't discount BDO's action combat system.  To do so would to simply be denying the reality of where games are going and what players are desiring more and more.  AoC would literally be shooting their profits in the foot if they DON'T have good action combat.  But I CAN tell you that if AoC can match BDO's graphic and combat quality, 90% of the player base would jump to AoC in a heartbeat.  And nothing would please me more than to see Pearl Abyss holding their hat in their hands... but that's another story. 


  • BDO combat involves very awkward controls (to me) for repetitive, non-strategic combat (get a good combo and just spam it) against enemies that are idiotic and aren’t much more than target practice dummies that occasionally hit back.  Again, extremely boring.
  • ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited September 2018
    Atama said:
    Here’s an old video called “Graphics vs Aesthetics”.

    https://youtube.com/watch?v=5oK8UTRgvJU

    The problem with a game like BDO, and every Asian MMO I’ve ever seen, is that it has graphics but lacks aesthetics.

    Asian MMOs have high-quality visuals, but all look pretty much identical.  And they often lack variety within the game.  Another thread talking about environments complained about the fact that every location in BDO looks pretty much the same and compared it to WoW which has dated, cartoonish graphics yet can be more satisfying to experience because each area is distinct.

    Don’t fall into the trap of asking for great “graphics” when what the graphics are displaying is generic and uninspired.  We want great aesthetics and that’s what I hope to see in AoC.
     Yet it has 9.5 million players worldwide and even with blatent pay to win that was introduced recently people are reluctant to play anything else. It's probably the most profitable MMO currently on the market. Considering BDO has almost no endgame other than repetitively grinding for gear and scheduled node wars it's safe to say it's graphics and combat are completely carrying that game.  I mean besides the graphics, combat and maybe the node empire and some aspects of farming or horse breeding, just about every other MMO does things better than BDO.

    So saying graphics isn't a top priority is a nice idealistic thing to think but sadly has been proven wrong by BDO's example. 

    But a couple of points:

    1) saying that BDO or Asian MMOs don't have landscape variety means you clearly haven't played then for any length of time LOL.  Archeage had a SLEW of varied landscapes from antarctic seas, lava fields, deserts, Oriental cities Medieval Cities, and everything in between.  As for BDO it's clear you only played at launch because there are many locales in Black desert that look completely different from each other now. You have vast deserts, Oceans, medievil countrysides, a Volcano, dark dead forests, swamps, large canyons, and Mythical elven forests with giant trees.  I don't think judging BDO when you really haven't played it since launch is probably a not the best thing to do. 

    2) More importantly It's not just BDO's Aesthetics but the the gameplay/core mechanics as well.  Combat is the main gameplay and a core mechanic of ANY MMO. (or any game with combat for that matter)  So again while your video which I have seen before is nice and all it still only addresses 1 side of my argument.  And even then I would say while idealistic its not accurate.  As I said above BDO is currently easily one of top 3 if not THE most profitable MMO at 9.5 million players world wide and most players spend more than $15 a month on the game.   

    The reason why people don't leave to another game is they simply can't find the same level of combat or graphical immersion in an MMO.  Sure they go and play monster hunter world or another single player game but usually end up coming back to BDO after they are done. 

    3) I talk to a lot of players and streamers and all of them are keeping an eye on AoC but they all have reservations regarding the combat and graphics of the game... they feel like its just not up to snuff for an MMO coming out in the future. 

    You gotta face facts Atama... BDO has raised the bar on the quality people expect in their graphics and combat for MMOs. 
  • SaintJ said:
    I some what agree, graphics, character animations, character creation, and combat seem to be things western MMO’s lack incomperison to eastern MMO’s.

    I’ve always stated that if you remove the Graphics, character creator, and combat from BDO the game would not have survived this long. BDO’s beauty and combat is what holds it’s playerbase and keeps attracting new players.

    But there are alot of Old verteran MMO players who think those little extra spices dont matter.

    If you want to attract a younger generation of gamers, combat and graphics are a huge part of what draws them in. 




    Well in a way you've hit the nail on the head.  AoC has really thought out their various other aspects of the game and I think they will be very good... however they also have to face facts. If they want to succeed they need to up the quality of the graphics and core combat mechanics. 

    Older veteran players might go for AoC in it's current state regardless but let's face it we're kind of a dying breed.  And even some of us like me can't really go back to tab targeting after we have been immersed in BDO's visceral combat system.  I tried to go back to Archeage the other day and it just felt clunky and unrealistic... which made me a bit sad honestly because I remember the fun I had back when I played it. 

    AoC has the potential to be THE BEST MMO on the market.  But they have to match the new Bar that has been set when it comes to graphics and combat otherwise players won't migrate over. 

    However if they do match it... I can see a mass Exodus of BDO players dropping that game like a hot rock for the very reasons you pointed out in order to play a more in- depth, dynamic and engaging MMO. 


  • ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited September 2018
    Atama said:
    BDO combat involves very awkward controls (to me) for repetitive, non-strategic combat (get a good combo and just spam it) against enemies that are idiotic and aren’t much more than target practice dummies that occasionally hit back.  Again, extremely boring.
    Well I would say that's a matter of perspective and taking the time to learn a new system.  You simply have to acclimate to it.  Once you do it's like second nature.  It's very similar to doing combos on old school street fighter or tekken or soul calibur but instead of using a controller (which you can actually play BDO with an Xbox controller if you want) you're using a keyboard and mouse. 

    And really it's no more awkward than trying to stretch your fingers halfway across your keyboard to click a number key to fire of a skill.  I mean if you think about it really BDO's combat is a matter of using more modifier keys than normal MMOs. instead of rolling through 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and Shift -1, shift -2, shift-3, shift -4 etc.  You're simply firing of the same skill with more local modifier keys:  F or S+F or Shift + F  or  RMB, A(forward) + RMB, S+ RMB, or Shift + RMB or Shift LMB etc.  It's just a more efficient way of firing of skills in a more fluid manner without having to move your hand clear across the keyboard or have a mouse jammed with 10 tiny buttons on the side.  Other than that you're just not locked into a target.  Your skill lands where you are currently facing/aiming.  But as I said above that can easily be replicated with a dark souls style lock on system. You could even have Tab function as said lock on key and cycle through targets much like it does in tab targeting but by default you will simply fire of your skill where you are aiming so it functions as a fine aiming/targeting tool. 

     While I will agree that the grind is repetitive its no more repetitive than grinding in any other mmo.  It's not my or the developers fault you didn't take the time to learn more high DPS skills or combos to vary up your grind.  The real problem with BDO is that grinding is it's ONLY PvE besides world bosses which is just a zerg fest.  And yes the mobs are relatively mindless but really no more so than most mobs in most MMOs.  But yes more AI and more challenging mobs would be nice vs just mowing them down like grass. 

    But that's precisely why I am rooting for AoC... I WANT a more in depth MMO and AoC seems like its well on it's way there.  What I am simply saying is they need to raise the quality of their graphics slightly and their combat in order to compete with BDO and other MMOs coming in the future. 
     
  • What constitutes good combat is a matter of perspective and preference. It's all opinion. And here is mine: Honestly, I don't really care all that much for BDO or its combat. I don't particularly like fighting games like Tekken, so the combat style of learning combos never interested me. The only impressive thing about BDO to me is the graphics. It is a visually stunning game. Their rain effects are beautiful as well. 

    And about the grind....using a new combo on mobs does not make the game any less grindy or even feel less grindy. The game has you grinding mobs from the get go and the only way to stay competitive is to continue grinding mobs. The grind stands out over other games is because of this and , like you said, the AI in BDO are garbage and way too easy. And due to the easy and bad AI, the combat feels non-strategic and repetitive. 
    Perhaps if the AI were better the combat would be more fun and engaging. Still, I admit I have a bias against it because I do not like the combo system of fighting games. In particular, I don't like how fast paced it is. Even after learning combos it just feels like spam to me. It feels like "who ever gets their combo off first wins". It reminds me of how the trading card game Yu-gi-oh became. Too fast paced, you can do way to much in one turn, and because of that you can finish an entire game (best 2 of 3) in less than 8 minutes.
  • nagash said:
    I will take lore over graphics anyday 
    One of the only things we agree on :3
  • Zastro said:
    What constitutes good combat is a matter of perspective and preference. It's all opinion. And here is mine: Honestly, I don't really care all that much for BDO or its combat. I don't particularly like fighting games like Tekken, so the combat style of learning combos never interested me. The only impressive thing about BDO to me is the graphics. It is a visually stunning game. Their rain effects are beautiful as well. 

    And about the grind....using a new combo on mobs does not make the game any less grindy or even feel less grindy. The game has you grinding mobs from the get go and the only way to stay competitive is to continue grinding mobs. The grind stands out over other games is because of this and , like you said, the AI in BDO are garbage and way too easy. And due to the easy and bad AI, the combat feels non-strategic and repetitive. 
    Perhaps if the AI were better the combat would be more fun and engaging. Still, I admit I have a bias against it because I do not like the combo system of fighting games. In particular, I don't like how fast paced it is. Even after learning combos it just feels like spam to me. It feels like "who ever gets their combo off first wins". It reminds me of how the trading card game Yu-gi-oh became. Too fast paced, you can do way to much in one turn, and because of that you can finish an entire game (best 2 of 3) in less than 8 minutes.
    I can definitely see your points regarding the grind.  I agree that the constant need to grind for progression exacerbates the feeling of "grindiness" to the game. 

    As for the combat itself.  You really only get 1-combo'd if the other person outgears you significantly or you are just aren't practiced enough at PvP to get out of a combo. That being said there are times where you just melt instantly and that can be no fun.  However that can happen in any MMO when there are gear differences. 

    But to your point that's why I am suggesting a melding of the combat systems. Again BDO doesn't have CC breaks which excacerbates the 1 combo issue as well as having all of their cc and buffs packaged with DPS skills.  Just splitting up those things into different skills will help slow combat down slightly and make it more strategic as there will be less DPS skills overall.

    And as for "combo style" combat again your issue is the input system. You STILL use combos in tab target.  Instead of doing shift + F or Shift RMB to fire off 2 different skills you're just pressing 1 and Shift+1 or mapped buttons on your mouse instead.   But you still have fast paced combat with combos in both systems. 

    I can't tell you how many times I got 1 combo'd by a daggerspell or darkrunner in Archeage  But that's because my class didn't have any CC breaks to counter them.  However with the correct build the combat was still fast paced but I also had  moments/opportunities for counter-play using my CC breaks and my own ccs to slow down the pace of the battle.  But again that was all due to the skill trees and not the input system.  

    Another easy way to fix too much skill spam in action combat and slow down the pace of the battle is the same control mechanism you can use in tab target combat which is skill cooldown.  ArcheAge had this down pretty well because you only had a few skills you could spam constantly (usually 1  per skill tree) and they typically had low damate.  The rest of the high damage skills had cooldowns.   What makes BDO's combat a bit more fast paced is that many skills can still be spammed with only slightly lower damage or without protection while on cooldown.  + you have 2 whole sets of skills both in awakened and un-awakened form and as I said before all of their CC skills are high damage skills as well so that again is part of the problem... but not their fluid, free aiming, Modifier-key based input system. 

    Another solution that could be employed is simply allowing the user to utilize 2 different input systems.  Nearly every skill in BDO can be placed on a standard skill hotbar. The only thing is there is only 1 hotbar.  As I suggested above AoC could use an action based combat system but have the option to have 4 hotbars and assign skills to all of those bars and allow you as the user to custom map them to various keys and specify what modifier keys are used. 

    At the end of the day the main difference between Tab target and action combat is the fact that tab target FORCES you to tab to each target vs free aim and you have to constantly mash down the right mouse button to look around.  Other than that it's just using more modifier key combinations to fire of skills using fewer keys. 

    I mean you can't tell me this combat doesn't look badass:

  • Zastro said:
    What constitutes good combat is a matter of perspective and preference. It's all opinion. And here is mine: Honestly, I don't really care all that much for BDO or its combat. I don't particularly like fighting games like Tekken, so the combat style of learning combos never interested me. The only impressive thing about BDO to me is the graphics. It is a visually stunning game. Their rain effects are beautiful as well. 

    And about the grind....using a new combo on mobs does not make the game any less grindy or even feel less grindy. The game has you grinding mobs from the get go and the only way to stay competitive is to continue grinding mobs. The grind stands out over other games is because of this and , like you said, the AI in BDO are garbage and way too easy. And due to the easy and bad AI, the combat feels non-strategic and repetitive. 
    Perhaps if the AI were better the combat would be more fun and engaging. Still, I admit I have a bias against it because I do not like the combo system of fighting games. In particular, I don't like how fast paced it is. Even after learning combos it just feels like spam to me. It feels like "who ever gets their combo off first wins". It reminds me of how the trading card game Yu-gi-oh became. Too fast paced, you can do way to much in one turn, and because of that you can finish an entire game (best 2 of 3) in less than 8 minutes.
    Well I agree that the grind in BDO is excacerbated by the fact that its really one of the only ways you can get better gear in the game and their RNG enhancing system is very unforgiving.  Per typical Korean MMOs they use the constant grind for end game gear to keep people playing vs giving players compelling content. 

    That being said what you mainly have a problem with is the input system.  Combos have been around in MMOs for decades.  I can't tell you how many times I've been 1 combo'd by a dark runner or daggerspell in archeage.  The only difference between Combing in a tab target game vs an action combat game is instead of pressing 1 or Shift +1 or mapped keys on your mouse to fire off a skill you're pressing F or shift +F and instead of using a number across the keyboard you use more modifier keys to keep your key presses local.  Localized movement = faster and more fluid input.

    The difference in speed you are seeing however is not entirely because of the action combat or it's input system because you can be just as fast in tab target with the right key/mouse mapping.  The difference is that most other MMOs have CC breaks.  BDO doesn't have cc breaks and all of their CC, healing and buff skills also do major damage.  So you have a litany of damage output in every class.  

    The other way to slow down action combat is the very common skill cooldown mechanic. ESO and Archeage were slower paced fights because there were only 3 or so weaker damage skills that you could spam while on cooldown or had no cooldown. This limted DPS to allow time for strategy and counterplay along with CC break mechanics. 

    However in BDO at least 50% of the skills can be spammed on cooldown with only slighly less damage and maybe having their buffs or protection removed.  And without CC breaks you just have a constant stream of damage coming through.  Hence why fights can be really fast in BDO. 

    So with the right skill cooldown mechanics the paces of fights can be slowed down. 

    Also the game can be designed to cater to both audiences.  For instance BDO you can place nearly any skill on the hotbar and fire it off from there.  However if you had 3 to 4 hotbars like in ArcheAge where you can custom map key shortcuts for them then you could essentially play BDO like a tab target game.  The same could be done for AoC. 

    Like wise we could have both an action combat system where the default mechanic is  default free look and you fire off skills where you are currently looking/aiming without having to target anything.  BUT you ALSO have the option to hit tab to target the nearest enemy and cycle through nearby targets. AND/OR you could have an option to map a "Lock On" key to say a third mouse button so you could use that option to lock on to a target instead. 

    So there are ways to have fluid action combat without sacrificing the functionality of tab targeting. And there are ways to slow down the fights just enough to still be fairly fast and viceral with realistic/very cool looking but slow enough to have strategy and counter play in AOC. 

    I mean don't you want combat that looks and feels this good?


    And FYI.... those aren't cutscenes.... that's just what the game looks like on remastered... I want AOC to be this good. 
  • Zastro said:
    What constitutes good combat is a matter of perspective and preference. It's all opinion. And here is mine: Honestly, I don't really care all that much for BDO or its combat. I don't particularly like fighting games like Tekken, so the combat style of learning combos never interested me. The only impressive thing about BDO to me is the graphics. It is a visually stunning game. Their rain effects are beautiful as well. 

    And about the grind....using a new combo on mobs does not make the game any less grindy or even feel less grindy. The game has you grinding mobs from the get go and the only way to stay competitive is to continue grinding mobs. The grind stands out over other games is because of this and , like you said, the AI in BDO are garbage and way too easy. And due to the easy and bad AI, the combat feels non-strategic and repetitive. 
    Perhaps if the AI were better the combat would be more fun and engaging. Still, I admit I have a bias against it because I do not like the combo system of fighting games. In particular, I don't like how fast paced it is. Even after learning combos it just feels like spam to me. It feels like "who ever gets their combo off first wins". It reminds me of how the trading card game Yu-gi-oh became. Too fast paced, you can do way to much in one turn, and because of that you can finish an entire game (best 2 of 3) in less than 8 minutes.
    You and I feel the same way about the game.

    I don’t think BDO is totally a bad game.  It’s just not fun.  And I tried to get myself to like it because it looks so pretty.  But I couldn’t.
  • Zastro said:
    What constitutes good combat is a matter of perspective and preference. It's all opinion. And here is mine: Honestly, I don't really care all that much for BDO or its combat. I don't particularly like fighting games like Tekken, so the combat style of learning combos never interested me. The only impressive thing about BDO to me is the graphics. It is a visually stunning game. Their rain effects are beautiful as well. 

    And about the grind....using a new combo on mobs does not make the game any less grindy or even feel less grindy. The game has you grinding mobs from the get go and the only way to stay competitive is to continue grinding mobs. The grind stands out over other games is because of this and , like you said, the AI in BDO are garbage and way too easy. And due to the easy and bad AI, the combat feels non-strategic and repetitive. 
    Perhaps if the AI were better the combat would be more fun and engaging. Still, I admit I have a bias against it because I do not like the combo system of fighting games. In particular, I don't like how fast paced it is. Even after learning combos it just feels like spam to me. It feels like "who ever gets their combo off first wins". It reminds me of how the trading card game Yu-gi-oh became. Too fast paced, you can do way to much in one turn, and because of that you can finish an entire game (best 2 of 3) in less than 8 minutes.
    Well I agree that the grind in BDO is excacerbated by the fact that its really one of the only ways you can get better gear in the game and their RNG enhancing system is very unforgiving.  Per typical Korean MMOs they use the constant grind for end game gear to keep people playing vs giving players compelling content. 

    That being said what you mainly have a problem with is the input system.  Combos have been around in MMOs for decades.  I can't tell you how many times I've been 1 combo'd by a dark runner or daggerspell in archeage.  The only difference between Combing in a tab target game vs an action combat game is instead of pressing 1 or Shift +1 or mapped keys on your mouse to fire off a skill you're pressing F or shift +F and instead of using a number across the keyboard you use more modifier keys to keep your key presses local.  Localized movement = faster and more fluid input.

    The difference in speed you are seeing however is not entirely because of the action combat or it's input system because you can be just as fast in tab target with the right key/mouse mapping.  The difference is that most other MMOs have CC breaks.  BDO doesn't have cc breaks and all of their CC, healing and buff skills also do major damage.  So you have a litany of damage output in every class.  

    The other way to slow down action combat is the very common skill cooldown mechanic. ESO and Archeage were slower paced fights because there were only 3 or so weaker damage skills that you could spam while on cooldown or had no cooldown. This limted DPS to allow time for strategy and counterplay along with CC break mechanics. 

    However in BDO at least 50% of the skills can be spammed on cooldown with only slighly less damage and maybe having their buffs or protection removed.  And without CC breaks you just have a constant stream of damage coming through.  Hence why fights can be really fast in BDO. 

    So with the right skill cooldown mechanics the paces of fights can be slowed down. 

    Also the game can be designed to cater to both audiences.  For instance BDO you can place nearly any skill on the hotbar and fire it off from there.  However if you had 3 to 4 hotbars like in ArcheAge where you can custom map key shortcuts for them then you could essentially play BDO like a tab target game.  The same could be done for AoC. 

    Like wise we could have both an action combat system where the default mechanic is  default free look and you fire off skills where you are currently looking/aiming without having to target anything.  BUT you ALSO have the option to hit tab to target the nearest enemy and cycle through nearby targets. AND/OR you could have an option to map a "Lock On" key to say a third mouse button so you could use that option to lock on to a target instead. 

    So there are ways to have fluid action combat without sacrificing the functionality of tab targeting. And there are ways to slow down the fights just enough to still be fairly fast and viceral with realistic/very cool looking but slow enough to have strategy and counter play in AOC. 

    I mean don't you want combat that looks and feels this good?


    And FYI.... those aren't cutscenes.... that's just what the game looks like on remastered... I want AOC to be this good. 
    I think if they could make BDO's combat feel just a tad slower and more strategic it would be amazing, so I agree with you about the merger. Everything you are suggesting sounds like it could reasonable work. I can't wait to get into the Alpha tests and help give feedback. Maybe we will be able to help mold the combat into something fluid and comfortable that is exciting and looks as badass as the images you shared.
  • It is the first pass of a game in Alpha I am sure they will have it refined more before launch.
  • Having played many mmo's over the years including a lot of bdo the thing that is great about bdo's combat, the thing that really makes it work isn't the pretty animations or the speed. 

    Its the ways the commands for the attacks are input into the keyboard, it feels very fluid to be able to combo a movement button or one of the buttons surrounding them with a mouse key or shift to throw a skill, it allows for a person to maintain mobility in a fight far more smoothly than using a hotbar of skills because you never have to reach half way across your keyboard to hit one taking you hand away from the movement keys.


  • McCheese said:

    Having played many mmo's over the years including a lot of bdo the thing that is great about bdo's combat, the thing that really makes it work isn't the pretty animations or the speed. 

    Its the ways the commands for the attacks are input into the keyboard, it feels very fluid to be able to combo a movement button or one of the buttons surrounding them with a mouse key or shift to throw a skill, it allows for a person to maintain mobility in a fight far more smoothly than using a hotbar of skills because you never have to reach half way across your keyboard to hit one taking you hand away from the movement keys.

    That’s one of the reasons I can’t stand BDO.  It needs a hotbar.  Instead I have to memorize 20 key and mouse combinations with nothing onscreen to guide me.  It’s not fluid, it’s the opposite; it’s extremely clunky and awkward.  It’s enough for an MMO to give you a bunch of abilities that you need to learn how to use and when to use them.  And then you memorize how to chain them together into combos on top of that.  I can deal with that, even Dark Age of Camelot did that back in the day (at a slower pace of course).  But then BDO takes the UI away because you don’t want an actual game to get in the way of how pretty the graphics are.  It’s just too much and for me doesn’t work.

    Well, except it does have one saving grace; you only need to memorize a couple of combos and spam them so often that you can do it without thinking about it.  But that just means you win the same way in every combat doing the same thing over and over.

    Give us a real interface, simplify the inputs, then require some strategy in combat.  Make it so that you have to try different approaches to succeed in combat to keep it from being stale and monotonous.

    By the way, thanks for reminding me why I had to give up on BDO.  I was struggling to articulate that in other threads but now I remember how awkward and terrible it was to play with no hot bars or anything else to guide me.
  • ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited September 2018
    Atama said:
    That’s one of the reasons I can’t stand BDO.  It needs a hotbar.  Instead I have to memorize 20 key and mouse combinations with nothing onscreen to guide me.  It’s not fluid, it’s the opposite; it’s extremely clunky and awkward.  

    It’s enough for an MMO to give you a bunch of abilities that you need to learn how to use and when to use them.  And then you memorize how to chain them together into combos on top of that.  I can deal with that, even Dark Age of Camelot did that back in the day (at a slower pace of course).  But then BDO takes the UI away because you don’t want an actual game to get in the way of how pretty the graphics are.  It’s just too much and for me doesn’t work.

    Well, except it does have one saving grace; you only need to memorize a couple of combos and spam them so often that you can do it without thinking about it.  But that just means you win the same way in every combat doing the same thing over and over.

    Give us a real interface, simplify the inputs, then require some strategy in combat.  Make it so that you have to try different approaches to succeed in combat to keep it from being stale and monotonous.

    By the way, thanks for reminding me why I had to give up on BDO.  I was struggling to articulate that in other threads but now I remember how awkward and terrible it was to play with no hot bars or anything else to guide me.

    Okay Atama.  I was trying to be nice before but let me point out a few things:

    1) You're making a blanket statement that "All action combat is bad" because YOU PERSONALLY  don't have the skill or patience to memorize key combinations.  I'm sorry you have this short coming but the vast majority of players don't share this handicap. 

    2) I honestly think the combo thing is just a personal red herring because as you said you have to memorize numerous things in game and even your coveted hot bar still requires Key combinations to fire off.  It takes just as much memorization to remember that  a 1 skill is fired off by Shift + 7 and another Shift +4 vs me assigning the same skills to Shift + F or Shift + RMB.  Also EVERY MMO HAS COMBOS.  I mean come on Atama, WoW has loads of skills that enhance or buff each other.  Buff and Debuff stacking is not new... its in literally every MMO. 

    3) You clearly aren't reading my posts in their entirety as I have suggested various solutions to have the Hotbars you speak of in an action combat system... in fact BDO has them but I'm guessing you didn't take the time to read any of BDO's tooltips/instructions or my posts to realize that.  I've suggested multiple solutions in previous posts were you would have the CHOICE to have 3-4 hotbars up to fire off all of the action skills so those who are opposed to using more modifier keys can use those instead while still having a free aiming action combat WITH OPTIONAL TAB TARGETING as well as a temporary Lock on feature. 

    4) The points of your previous arguments have all been addressed and I have created solutions for all of them. Frankly you are behaving like a bit of a Luddite stuck in the past who is completely opposed to any kind of change from what you are used to. 

    Unfortunately there is no reasoning with someone like that and therefore no way to have productive discourse.  If you are going to continue on like you have been then I think it would be more productive if you left this conversation as you are starting to sound like a broken record. 

    If however you can take a look at the solutions I have given to your previous points and offer constructive ways in which they can be improved then I would be happy to take them.  If we can focus our energy on being productive and improving ideas then we will make much more of a positive impact on AOC so that is a game that we can all enjoy for hopefully many years. 
  • McCheese said:

    Having played many mmo's over the years including a lot of bdo the thing that is great about bdo's combat, the thing that really makes it work isn't the pretty animations or the speed. 

    Its the ways the commands for the attacks are input into the keyboard, it feels very fluid to be able to combo a movement button or one of the buttons surrounding them with a mouse key or shift to throw a skill, it allows for a person to maintain mobility in a fight far more smoothly than using a hotbar of skills because you never have to reach half way across your keyboard to hit one taking you hand away from the movement keys.


    I agree it's not so much about the speed and yes the graphics are not everything but I mean... the combination makes it pretty damn satisfying.

    But you are right.  What makes really any action combat system but particularly BDOs is it's fluidity.  As you said before you're not reaching clear across the keyboard or locking your character in place in the middle of the fight so you can mouse click skill boxes on your screen which allows fights to be more mobile, engaging and visceral.

    Sure it takes a little getting used to changing to a new paradigm of character control but once you do you'll wonder how you ever played without it. 

    And I think that last part is pretty important... those of us who have played BDO and enjoyed it's combat and graphic fidelity can't really go back to older systems and fully enjoy them the same way... we're always wanting that fluid engaging combat... 

    And thats millions of players across the NA/EU MMO demographic now. We're all hungering for a game with the quest, story and content depth of say WoW, ArcheAge or ESO but with the graphic fidelity and fluid combat of BDO. 

    Sure AOC could launch with it's current system and people would play it for a while but the vast majority of the population would abandon the game for an MMO that CAN provide content depth as well as graphic fidelity and fluid action combat as soon as it  comes out... which is simply inevitable given enough time. 



  • Atama said:
    That’s one of the reasons I can’t stand BDO.  It needs a hotbar.  Instead I have to memorize 20 key and mouse combinations with nothing onscreen to guide me.  It’s not fluid, it’s the opposite; it’s extremely clunky and awkward.  

    It’s enough for an MMO to give you a bunch of abilities that you need to learn how to use and when to use them.  And then you memorize how to chain them together into combos on top of that.  I can deal with that, even Dark Age of Camelot did that back in the day (at a slower pace of course).  But then BDO takes the UI away because you don’t want an actual game to get in the way of how pretty the graphics are.  It’s just too much and for me doesn’t work.

    Well, except it does have one saving grace; you only need to memorize a couple of combos and spam them so often that you can do it without thinking about it.  But that just means you win the same way in every combat doing the same thing over and over.

    Give us a real interface, simplify the inputs, then require some strategy in combat.  Make it so that you have to try different approaches to succeed in combat to keep it from being stale and monotonous.

    By the way, thanks for reminding me why I had to give up on BDO.  I was struggling to articulate that in other threads but now I remember how awkward and terrible it was to play with no hot bars or anything else to guide me.

    Okay Atama.  I was trying to be nice before but let me point out a few things:

    1) You're making a blanket statement that "All action combat is bad" because YOU PERSONALLY  don't have the skill or patience to memorize key combinations.  I'm sorry you have this short coming but the vast majority of players don't share this handicap. 
    Whoa, whoa, whoa, what the {bleep} are you talking about?!  I never stated not implied that all action combat is bad.  I play action RPGs all the time.  In fact most of the MMOs I play are like that.  It’s only BDO that I was talking about, because that game has the particular shortcomings that made it unenjoyable for me. I play TESO, TERA Online, SWL, NWO, and so on.  I enjoy that gameplay.  I’m only talking about BDO.  And I was merely expressing an opinion about why I personally don’t care for the game, not calling it a bad game in general, just something I couldn’t bring myself to enjoy.

    I’m not even going to address the rest of your rant where you totally flew off the rails.  What is wrong with you?! :(
  • ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited September 2018
    Atama said:
    Whoa, whoa, whoa, what the {bleep} are you talking about?!  I never stated not implied that all action combat is bad.  I play action RPGs all the time.  In fact most of the MMOs I play are like that.  It’s only BDO that I was talking about, because that game has the particular shortcomings that made it unenjoyable for me. I play TESO, TERA Online, SWL, NWO, and so on.  I enjoy that gameplay.  I’m only talking about BDO.  And I was merely expressing an opinion about why I personally don’t care for the game, not calling it a bad game in general, just something I couldn’t bring myself to enjoy.

    I’m not even going to address the rest of your rant where you totally flew off the rails.  What is wrong with you?! :(
    LOL I literally feel like you only read the first few lines of my posts before writing your own response.  Not all of my last post was a negative rant towards you. There were a few jabs in there yes but that was because I was getting a bit frustrated. 

    What is frustrating is that you keep repeating that BDO's combat is bad and that we should take nothing from it and ignore everything else that I bring up to address your concerns.   It's like you get to "BDO" and immediately stop reading and start typing your response ignoring all of the suggested solutions I bring up to resolve the issues you have with BDO's combat. 

    I'm not advocating AoC blatantly copies BDO's combat system.  Like you and other's have pointed out it has flaws.  The fights are over too fast because skills can be combo'd a bit too quickly and do too much damage as they wrap CC, Buffs, debuffs and Heals into High damage skills so you're always doing damage at a rapid pace.  Plus there are no defined "roles" like tank, DPS, CC  and Healer. 

    If you go back above and read my posts a little more carefully I clarify that what I want to emulate from BDO is the quality of it's combat animations and their input system but I also suggest several different ways of slowing down it's combat to allow for strategy and counterplay. 

    You stated that BDO doesn't have a hotbar which I corrected that in fact they do and nearly any skill can be slotted to, But I didn't do so to insult or offend you. I simply pointed that out to illustrate that there is a way to satisfy your desire for more hotbar input options by simply using BDO's base input system but add 2 to 3 more hotbars so players like yourself could custom slot their skills on their instead an fire them off via the old style system while newer players can use the action combat system to fire them off. 

    I also talked about adding a way to tab target and lock on target while still having an action combat system.

    Yet all of your responses continue to state your personal opinion on how BDO's combat is bad and horrible and not fun when I'm not actually suggesting we completely copy it.  You're basically throwing the baby out of the window with the bath water so to speak. 

    So again... it feels like you're not actually reading my posts but only seeing the first few bits and then expounding upon how you hate BDO's combat again when in reality I'm genuinely trying to address your concerns and come up with solutions to HELP players like you and players like me to have a common combat system we both enjoy for AOC. 

    I think if we can come up with a system that both old school and new school players like and we present that in a unified fashion to the Creators of AOC we might just get what we want. 
  • Atama said:
    Whoa, whoa, whoa, what the {bleep} are you talking about?!  I never stated not implied that all action combat is bad.  I play action RPGs all the time.  In fact most of the MMOs I play are like that.  It’s only BDO that I was talking about, because that game has the particular shortcomings that made it unenjoyable for me. I play TESO, TERA Online, SWL, NWO, and so on.  I enjoy that gameplay.  I’m only talking about BDO.  And I was merely expressing an opinion about why I personally don’t care for the game, not calling it a bad game in general, just something I couldn’t bring myself to enjoy.

    I’m not even going to address the rest of your rant where you totally flew off the rails.  What is wrong with you?! :(
    LOL I literally feel like you only read the first few lines of my posts before writing your own response.  Not all of my last post was a negative rant towards you. There were a few jabs in there yes but that was because I was getting a bit frustrated. 
    You’re right.  I only read far enough to watch you put words in my mouth that I never said, make prejudiced assumptions about me, and saw the unappealing rambling wall of text.  That’s enough to know that you’re beneath talking to and not worth trying to reason with.  I only lament that there is no ignore feature on these boards, at least on the mobile site.  I’ll have to check at home, otherwise I’ll be putting in a feature request.

    I’ve been having awful luck lately.  I had one person tear into me with a profession-laden tirade recently and Steve himself banned the guy.  I try to act civilly toward people but I must be a magnet for this stuff. :(

  • I'm sorry you feel that way and I apologize if you feel attacked.  Again I valued some of your initial criticisms and strived to come up with solutions for them.  It bums me out that you didn't take the time to read them but it is what it is.

    Besides one of the posts where I let my frustration get the better of me I felt I have been reasonable and generally respectful in our debates.  

    At the end of the day I'm only trying to help make AoC the best MMO it can be just like you.  Hopefully the end game will meet both of our expectations. 
  • I'm sorry you feel that way and I apologize if you feel attacked.  Again I valued some of your initial criticisms and strived to come up with solutions for them.  It bums me out that you didn't take the time to read them but it is what it is.

    Besides one of the posts where I let my frustration get the better of me I felt I have been reasonable and generally respectful in our debates.  

    At the end of the day I'm only trying to help make AoC the best MMO it can be just like you.  Hopefully the end game will meet both of our expectations. 
    You seem sincere to me so it’s cool, I’m going to take some time later to look over your posts and respond.  I respect anyone who makes an effort to honestly communicate.
  • @Atama It is just another example of Poe's Law on the internet. I had a guy yesterday on Discord that I got into an exchange that went south because he sounded like a whiny little bitch about something being discussed and I went full tilt back at him. But once everything calmed down and he explained how he meant it this way, and not that way, I could see how the voice in my head added tone and context to his original statement that the addition of just a wink emote might have stopped the whole exchange before it started.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poe's_law

  • I mean don't you want combat that looks and feels this good?

    I want combat that feels good, but in all honesty, if the rest of the game is as it should be, I don't care if I end up playing on graphics akin to Runescape Classic.

    The following is true for *me*.

    Enjoyable combat mechanics > logical gear progression > raid encounter design > economic stability > crafting depth > functioning open PvP system > group content design > lore presentation > node system > siege system > lore depth > customer support > in game sound effects > graphical fidelity > soundtrack > vanity items.

    That is obviously not how things fall for you, if it were this thread wouldn't exist. I just want to point out that there are a LOT of things that a LOT of other players consider more important than graphics - graphics will not be the make or break for this game.
  • Atama said:
    McCheese said:

    Having played many mmo's over the years including a lot of bdo the thing that is great about bdo's combat, the thing that really makes it work isn't the pretty animations or the speed. 

    Its the ways the commands for the attacks are input into the keyboard, it feels very fluid to be able to combo a movement button or one of the buttons surrounding them with a mouse key or shift to throw a skill, it allows for a person to maintain mobility in a fight far more smoothly than using a hotbar of skills because you never have to reach half way across your keyboard to hit one taking you hand away from the movement keys.

    That’s one of the reasons I can’t stand BDO.  It needs a hotbar.  Instead I have to memorize 20 key and mouse combinations with nothing onscreen to guide me.  It’s not fluid, it’s the opposite; it’s extremely clunky and awkward.  It’s enough for an MMO to give you a bunch of abilities that you need to learn how to use and when to use them.  And then you memorize how to chain them together into combos on top of that.  I can deal with that, even Dark Age of Camelot did that back in the day (at a slower pace of course).  But then BDO takes the UI away because you don’t want an actual game to get in the way of how pretty the graphics are.  It’s just too much and for me doesn’t work.

    Well, except it does have one saving grace; you only need to memorize a couple of combos and spam them so often that you can do it without thinking about it.  But that just means you win the same way in every combat doing the same thing over and over.

    Give us a real interface, simplify the inputs, then require some strategy in combat.  Make it so that you have to try different approaches to succeed in combat to keep it from being stale and monotonous.

    By the way, thanks for reminding me why I had to give up on BDO.  I was struggling to articulate that in other threads but now I remember how awkward and terrible it was to play with no hot bars or anything else to guide me.

    As previously stated in the thread bdo does have multiple hotbars available to use if that's how you wanted to play as will ashes obviously.

    And don't get me wrong I'm not advocating for bdo's mindless ai and endless combo spamming

    What I am saying is that it would be nice to either have action combat skills with pre assigned key combo's that can be used in place of the hot bar or the ability to assign our own key combo's to them allowing those of us who find that gameplay smoother the ability to play that way.

    I too have played eso, terra, blade and soul, nwo, tsw/tswl, gw2 and on and on and none of them felt as fluid as bdo to me or for that matter any of my gamer friends who played it and we've all been playing since the 90's.

    I do agree that the encounters and combat should require thought and strategy instead of mindless spamming, and I also agree such encounters would be more easily achievable at a slightly slower speed than bdo.

    I guess for me the way you feel about bdo's key combo combat is the way I feel about skill bar based combat after having played with key combo system

  • ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited September 2018
    Atama said:
    BDO combat involves very awkward controls (to me) for repetitive, non-strategic combat (get a good combo and just spam it) against enemies that are idiotic and aren’t much more than target practice dummies that occasionally hit back.  Again, extremely boring.
    ^^^

    At the end of the day IMHO....we need to exist midway between static whackamole tab targeting...and RSI inducing FPS...in a tactical combat format.
    There is no MMO on the market that truly provides that style of combat as a reference.

    Proactive 'Interrupt/Counter' game-play should be front and center of this combat.
    Not scripted gameplay 'ignoring the fact'....Not reactive game-play 'after the fact'...but proactive game-play 'during the fact'.

    For Honor give an excellent example of interrupt based combat. If you are not alert and proactive.....you die. Adapt or die!
    Here it will do you no good to stand there and spam a min-maxed macroed skill combo..with the lowest TTK build found on the internet..ad infinitum.

    That means you need a clear visual feedback mechanism before any action is completed. This can only be accomplished by different stances and effects as a warm up to the main thrust. This warm up action must provide a window of opportunity for the target of an attack to counter or interrupt and change the outcome of that attack back upon the attacker.
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