Lets Talk Gameplay: Action-Hybrid Combat and Tab Targeting Combat

ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
edited October 2018 in Ashes of Creation Design
I love the ideas behind Ashes of Creation. I am amazed at the progress that the development team has made in such a short time, while maintaining the highest quality. Now, I have no doubt that the game will be fantastic, however, with that being said, there is almost certainly going to be an issue with balancing Action Combat and Tab Targeting.
Now, before I start criticizing their vision in combat, let me explain their vision in combat:
Hybrid, and Tab-Targeting will both be balanced combat options.

Now, the vision and the idea is absolutely fantastic...if it was a perfect world. But here is the issue, besides the giant task it would take to balance the two styles, failure is tremendously harmful to the game. Lets take a look at why.
Factors:
Game Balance
New Players

Game Balance:
If, for some reason, the development team fails in making the two systems balanced, then one play style will have an advantage over another. Now, besides the obvious reason why you would want pvp to be balanced, this hurts pve as well. You don't want to make dungeons either too hard nor too easy. You want to make it a challenge, yet achievable. But if one play-style is better than another, then the dungeon will be either too hard or too easy for the other. 

New Players:
Any ruining of game balance or worst, one clearly more fun than the other becomes a risk to new players regardless of personal taste. Imagine starting a new game, you know very little about it besides what your friend has told you, you choose a play-style because he says its the most fun way to play. And you get bored because you aren't a fan of the combat and look for another MMORPG. Little did you as a new player know that they would have LOVED the combat had they chosen the other option! By introducing multiple systems, you are making a risk of a player not enjoying that play-style and thus dropping the game. Not getting new players is literally an MMO killer.

Proposal:
Pick one style. Whether that is the hybrid system, or the tab targeting. Pick one, and perfect it. The only pay to play MMORPG's worth their salt, World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy 14 did exactly that. Picking one play-style gives players a similar experience, makes balancing combat easier, and eliminates the risk of scaring new players away.

TL;DR: In order to guarantee game balance and keep as many new players as possible, perfecting one combat style is preferable to having multiple options.

To get a better understanding of what everyone thinks about it (and doesn't want to comment) like this post if you agree, and "LOL" if you disagree.

Comments

  • ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited October 2018
    Never take a challenge or a risk, stick to the ways that have been trampled to death. While we are at it, let's remove the node/city system and stick to conventional level zones because I'm sure someone doesn't like the fact that his zone changed and now he has to find a new part of world where he can level.

    While I can appreciate the notion that there will be people unhappy with whatever you give them, I can also say people will do one style or the other because they simply love it.
    The vast majority doesn't care for min/max to the extremes.
    People pick classes they love and find fun to play.

    Don't doubt Intrepid just because it might fail. Expressing your concerns about the difficulty of balance, sure, but deeming it a failur from the get go?
    Well, guess we better make another WoW clone then, just to be on the safe side? Or let's just shut it down completely like Everquest: Next because.  "It wasn't fun" - Russ Shanks

  • You can choose if you lean more towards tab or more to action skills.
    So if you don't like tab you take more action skills and vice versa.
    So i don't see how you can scare new players away by giving them more options...  :o
  • A failure from the get go? No. But a huge risk? Definitely. Giving players more options isn't always a good thing.
    As far as why giving them more options can be potentially ruinous, its because of people's bias'. People will certainly recommend one play-style over another to their friends, and this can make that player have a bad experience and not even bother to try the other play-style. As they have already deemed it less fun.
    Personally, I think a hybrid system is better. In order to separate yourselves from the combat style of WoW and FF14, hybrid is an excellent choice.
  • Choice is what makes life interesting and leaning fun.   No choice, is to cater to the mundane.   One of the main  attractions of Ashes is it's diversity and that is why many are eagerly waiting for this game.
  • ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited October 2018
    Yeah but is it really a risk at all? If only there was some testing period before the game was released to everyone where we could figure out what works.

    If only tab targeting was easy to code/implement and already done by the team.

    If only action combat was being tested right freaking now so it will be smooth.

    If only we could test different ways of mixing, matching and finding a balance between the two with community feedback until we find a nice mix and if the feedback is overwhelmingly in one direction or another the developers could just use what they have built up already.

    This isn't risk, this is massive effort to code and develop TWO combat systems and some balance testing to come, to fine tune the balance in a hybrid system.

    I would say keep your breeches on and let's give real feedback when we have tangible stuff in our hands of what a hybrid system looks like.
  • If only...  made me giggle. <thumbs up>

    People are always biased, people always know better. That's people and if they can't look past one recommendation and look at what's available...it is like standing in an ice-cream shop picking chocolate because your friend told you so, even tho you love the fruti ones.
    Maybe you like it maybe you don't, point is does that stop you from trying other flavors or ever eating ice cream again?

    On a side note I do not agree with the notion of having a similar experience because of a unified combatsystem. Taking WoW as an example, if you are telling me a BM hunter a survival hunter and a frostmage give the same gameplay experience, I call you crazy. (talking from a Classic to Lichking point of view, cann't say what they did to wow by now)

    Having more options does just that for you, having more options to potentially find something you like.
  • NeuroGuy said:
    Yeah but is it really a risk at all? If only there was some testing period before the game was released to everyone where we could figure out what works.

    If only tab targeting was easy to code/implement and already done by the team.

    If only action combat was being tested right freaking now so it will be smooth.

    If only we could test different ways of mixing, matching and finding a balance between the two with community feedback until we find a nice mix and if the feedback is overwhelmingly in one direction or another the developers could just use what they have built up already.

    This isn't risk, this is massive effort to code and develop TWO combat systems and some balance testing to come, to fine tune the balance in a hybrid system.

    I would say keep your breeches on and let's give real feedback when we have tangible stuff in our hands of what a hybrid system looks like.
    Ah yes, insulting someone's intelligence to make a point. I am well aware of what they are doing and testing and how early it is in the process. That doesn't change my point at all. ALL games where there are multiple classes have balancing issues. Every game that has multiple control sets have balancing issues. The development team is fantastic, yes, but they aren't perfect.
    With 64 class types, balancing is already going to be an incredibly difficult feat with just one control type. But then you want to have each class be balanced with TWO different control types? Yeah, not likely.
    Maybe you feel that balance isn't important, but having "fun" is what is important. And you would be right! But in a game that is so heavily focused on pvp and player conflict, balance is essential. And a lack of balance can quite literally destroy the fun.

    Grisu said:
    If only...  made me giggle. <thumbs up>

    People are always biased, people always know better. That's people and if they can't look past one recommendation and look at what's available...it is like standing in an ice-cream shop picking chocolate because your friend told you so, even tho you love the fruti ones.
    Maybe you like it maybe you don't, point is does that stop you from trying other flavors or ever eating ice cream again?
    But take for instance if its your first time eating ice cream. It is like if a kid eats poorly cooked asparagus, that kid will say he doesn't like asparagus! Now if you bring that to an MMO, and your friend says this is the best, most fun way to play the game, then if they decide they don't like it, they won't "try." the other play-style. They will just quit. 

    Grisu said:
     Taking WoW as an example, if you are telling me a BM hunter a survival hunter and a frostmage give the same gameplay experience, I call you crazy. (talking from a Classic to Lichking point of view, cann't say what they did to wow by now)

    Having more options does just that for you, having more options to potentially find something you like.
    Ah, excuse my language, I meant that they should have the same in regards to controls or be locked to a class i.e either tab targeting or the hybrid combat. As opposed to one class having several different control types (not counting different builds).
    The change in play-styles should be only class specific as opposed to control-type specific AND class specific.
  • @onystyle
    I did not mean to insult your intelligence. I was just trying to make a point that we haven't even seen what the hybrid looks like, and we as a community have the power to change how combat is with feedback (not speculation) once we get our hands on it.

    As mentioned, they are essentially developing TWO combat systems for the hybrid so it will not be a difficult feat to scrap one if it is disastrous.

    And oh yes, the 64 classes. Man I really wish they never mentioned that, and now they always have to qualify it with: keep in mind that your secondary class choice only augments, it doesn't add extra spells when people freak out and ask about the "impossible balance". You should NOT think of it as 64 UNIQUE classes. There are 8 unique classes with tons of customization where no two players within the same class (out of the 8) will feel the same. That's how you should really think about it.

    But but they each have a cool name! There still are not 64 unique classes. Your choice of secondary class is augmentation/customization. Imagine playing old wow where instead of 3 talent trees you have 8 talent trees for each class and the talent trees actually changed your abilities in some way instead of predominantly giving passive stats. So balance is really not that impossible.

    Ultimately though, at the crux of all posts like this, is the point that we still need to give them an opportunity to fail before we freak out. We can't predict the future, no matter how strongly we believe it... we just gotta wait and see the first iteration and help improve it by being constructive.
  • On a side note I get the feeling now that there is some missconception going on, some skills are tab targeted and others are action oriented. The skills don't change by some kind of change in control scheme, they stay tab targeted or action oriented. The control type is the build so to speak unless something dramatically changed that I am not aware off. Would be surprising if it did.

    To be fair, in the past most often what I have observed is companies being unwilling to balance. WoW is as always a prime example for the good and bad. (or any mmo that has both extensive pve and pvp but their statement is just pure gold).
    Most problems arise when they balance something in pve that fucks over pvp values and vice versa.
    WoW made a statement in the past against seperating skilldamage values in pve and pvp because it is to much to ask from people to read the skill for 2 different situations.
    It would solve all the problems very soon, but they are unwilling for any given ridiculous reason. <shrug> I honestly don't think that over time balancing is an issue, just wether or not companies are willing to do it is the question.
    GW2 weaponbased system?
    You are telling me an objectively nonviable weapontype in any trait combination that does only half the damage of a different weapontype and has no other advantages like buffs, utility over time advantage etc. or even lacking them, (it was all present, you name a balancing issue, GW2 had it) for a class CAN'T be balanced by.. I duno... raising the base weapon damage to fulfill the promise of everything is viable? It's literally the easiest scenario inside the class balance, it's a problem tailored for their system to be handled with ease. 2 years later still the exact same problem.

    They can, they just won't. That's just two very specific examples to illustrate my point. We could go much broader than that but it won't really add anything.


    Aside from that, I stick to my phrase, having more options does just that, having more options too potentially find something you like. You don't try any of them because someone recommended to walk when you can swagger, skip, hop, lunge or run? Collateral damage of stupidity. It's a win-win for me either way.
  • Grisu said:
    On a side note I get the feeling now that there is some missconception going on, some skills are tab targeted and others are action oriented. 
    ....
    @Grisu
    I'm pretty sure Steven mentioned that only a few skills are fixed. All other skills are either action or tab. Probably depending on your choices in the Skilltree.
    I think it was when he played with Krojak. He said something about 75-80% of the skills that can be either action or tab.
    But i can't look it up right now. So correct me if i'm mistaken.
  • Combat targeting

    Through skill choice, players can customize their combat experience to focus on tab targeted skills, action targeted skills, or a mix of both.[5]

    • It may not be possible to be able to fully spec into just action or tab targeted skills. There might be a 75% cap on choosing skills from any one type.[6]
    https://ashesofcreation.wiki/Combat

    It sounds to me that a skill can be either tab or action and you can pick the tab skills if you want to be more tabbed, but you can't fully choose 100% of your skills to be tabbed, so the rest you need to choose from the action skills.
  • Ah I see, yeah I was indeed mistaken. Did not know that many were locked and that its not 2 distinct play styles.
  • Yeah I would have been really surprised if that had changed.Glad I could help to get the info straight.


  • Grisu said:
    To be fair, in the past most often what I have observed is companies being unwilling to balance. WoW is as always a prime example for the good and bad. (or any mmo that has both extensive pve and pvp but their statement is just pure gold).
    Most problems arise when they balance something in pve that fucks over pvp values and vice versa.
    WoW made a statement in the past against seperating skilldamage values in pve and pvp because it is to much to ask from people to read the skill for 2 different situations.
    It would solve all the problems very soon, but they are unwilling for any given ridiculous reason. <shrug> I honestly don't think that over time balancing is an issue, just wether or not companies are willing to do it is the question.

    They are unwilling, cause they are incompetent.
    You need deeper understanding in their thinking. The lead directors, class designers etc. positions are well paying, yet minimal work jobs. They ain't pick peoples based on their knowledge... they pick friends and relatives in those good jobs.

    That's why it suck. Cause the ones who are responsible aren't play with games at all, or play it casually.
    And since they are friends/relatives, they can't even be taken responsible for the heavy issues they cause.

    That's the sad truth.

    Also the other part isn't true. Since mop there are abilities that are different in PvE and PvP, and their numbers heavily increased with every expansion.
    They still can't balance it, cause they suck, and they want to favor the casual noobs, so make the whole combat simpler and easier...

    Just to see how **** the leadership is, they actually spend time on creating tooltips for abilities, that hides the exact description of the abilities. Just, so the braindead players doesn't need to look at difficult things like numbers...

    Pathetic....
    However in wotlk wow had the best combat in the mmo's history. Don't get it wrong... it wasn't balanced even that time, but was relatively balanced, and could be played at high level, while also was easy enough for the casuals too.
    And that time there wasn't even issue but PvE and PvP could live near each other.


    Oh! And don't forget, they not only incompetent... they are extremely arrogant and egoist...
    They are so full of themselves, that they ignore the feedback from people, who have more playtime, than the whole designer staff combined...
  • ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited October 2018
    Wow, yes... they are the arrogant ones...
  • "Since MoP" <shrug> I did say, in the past so what's your point? I should have probably clarified that I haven't played since well Wotlk/cata. Doesn't make it false in any way tho, they did say that in an official statement and it was longer true than not.
    As you pointed out there were still only a few skills affected so it tok even more years to really implement it. Hence unwilling. ;)
  • Grisu said:
    "Since MoP" <shrug> I did say, in the past so what's your point? I should have probably clarified that I haven't played since well Wotlk/cata. Doesn't make it false in any way tho, they did say that in an official statement and it was longer true than not.
    As you pointed out there were still only a few skills affected so it tok even more years to really implement it. Hence unwilling. ;)
    Well in wotlk there was no problem with the PvP/PvE, despite same abilities so?
  • "Till wotlk there was no balancing problem"-is what you are saying? I hope you are joking. Either way I am not getting into this any more since it has nothing to do with the topic anymore
  • Grisu said:
    "Till wotlk there was no balancing problem"-is what you are saying? I hope you are joking. Either way I am not getting into this any more since it has nothing to do with the topic anymore
    So you fake quote, then saying that leave since it is off topic
    Nice, 10/10
  • It was a question - you know how questionmarks work? - to clarify your statement since I wasn't sure. 10/10 comprehension ? :thinking: Oh well at the very least your respons highlights your priorities
  • I agree with @onystyle on this one. I would much rather see them focus on one specific combat system. Mixing different styles is just begging for trouble, and it will be nightmare to balance pve/pvp after two different systems, it really makes no sense.

    Hell.. I would much rather see games going the BDO route (in terms of combat), the combat in BDO is absolutely amazing, one of the most satisfying combat systems currently in a MMO (struggling to find anything else to say about BDO that is good though). But the safe and simple route is obviously tab-targeting, which is why all the mainstream MMO's are doing just that, sadly.

    I think @onystyle's worries are justified, and I don't see why people have to reply with sarcasm to belittle his view on the matter, especially when it's a legitimate concern.
  • @Caene No as it turns out they are not justified, since they are based on missinformation if you kept reading.
  • Caene said:
     the combat in BDO is absolutely amazing, one of the most satisfying combat systems currently in a MMO 
    lol
  • Yes, I had originally thought there were two separate combat systems. But it is going to be hybrid combat 100% of the time, however players are able to choose how much one way or the other. We don't know how that will work in the end, but I believe they are giving the option as a slider? To be honest though, id rather they have no combat customization from that perspective. Id rather they just keep one system, and one system only. But we will see, only time shall tell.
  • Certain skills will be action based, certain skills will be tab-target. You will be able to place skill points into a split of 75/25 max of either. Most CC and CC breaks will be under tab target. Skills to flag pvp opponents will need to be targeted so most likely will be under tab. There is no false flagging by running through someone's action aoe that hasn't flagged on you. So intentions are known, but not widely disseminated.
  • If we go a speculate what is 'risky' and will 'most likely fail' then half the features in the game would have to be removed or changed. If it turns out that Intrepids combat system will be bad once we can test it in later phases then they will most likely change it around.
  • I for one really like the hybrid system they are developing.  I think a mix of tab targeting and skill shot type abilities will make the game very interesting. 
    Much like in LoL, a system with mixed targeting and skill shot based abilities, it creates a very interesting dynamic between heroes/classes.
  • I just don't see how a summoner will get much out of action combat when compared to a ranger or warrior. Different classes will have different play styles, so I'm happy that the game has both but that just my view and in the grand scheme of things and it will have no effect on the game. hint hint
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