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[Feedback Request] Alpha Two Caravan PvP Preview Shown in January Livestream



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    I'll just say one thing, they have to deactivate target mode automatically in pvp.
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    kanwesmuzzykanwesmuzzy Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    SongRune wrote: »
    This is just hard for me. Particularly as an Aspiring bard, your TTK and 'tactics' shown leave me no reason to be excited, particularly if I'm not just 'buffing people and then hiding'. I understand that this is WIP, but then, why show it? It just demoralizes me and doesn't inform me of anything good. I can't imagine a form of bard songs that both feel like bard songs, and actually have any real function in this environment and don't just get me focus killed immediately.

    I gotta ask Azherae to break this down for me. I hope she can dispel some of this, and it's not as bad as it looks. I'll edit if she changes my mind.

    "Why show it" - Because they have committed to open development, which means good and bad showcases for people with differing opinions.

    Also: getting focused as a support class when being called out in a fight is very normal for Shooters, MMORPGs, MOBAs, etc. that won't be new or different in Ashes. In Albion Online's chaotic large scale pvp the same thing happens: a dive team will call out a target and leap/divide and combo the support groups. You can counteract this by having a group of defenders (whatever the equivalent will be in Ashes) that will protect this group.

    In no rude way: a lot of people are being exposed to Sandbox MMORPG PvP that have never experienced it before, and before I did I also thought "how could this work?". I started playing with some pvp guilds in Albion and listened to shotcallers/comms, and was amazed how tactical the game can actually get in seemingly "zerg" combat.

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    kanwesmuzzykanwesmuzzy Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    Imnotkio wrote: »

    I could go on and on about TTK in mmorpgs, but I think this covers the most important parts of it. Please, keep TTK high.

    In my experience playing pvp sandbox MMORPGs, Albion Online in particular: the solution to TTK is defensives, making positioning important, and making Tanks in PvP viable in ways that protects other players. You can not artificially boost TTK to solve every TTK problem, supply players with counter play that is feasible and programmed into class kits or those who choose to have it.

    Ultimately if 10 players cast snipe on one target how else are you going to not allow them to get 1 shot?

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    SongRune wrote: »
    This is just hard for me. Particularly as an Aspiring bard, your TTK and 'tactics' shown leave me no reason to be excited, particularly if I'm not just 'buffing people and then hiding'. I understand that this is WIP, but then, why show it? It just demoralizes me and doesn't inform me of anything good. I can't imagine a form of bard songs that both feel like bard songs, and actually have any real function in this environment and don't just get me focus killed immediately.

    I gotta ask Azherae to break this down for me. I hope she can dispel some of this, and it's not as bad as it looks. I'll edit if she changes my mind.

    "Why show it" - Because they have committed to open development, which means good and bad showcases for people with differing opinions.

    Also: getting focused as a support class when being called out in a fight is very normal for Shooters, MMORPGs, MOBAs, etc. that won't be new or different in Ashes. In Albion Online's chaotic large scale pvp the same thing happens: a dive team will call out a target and leap/divide and combo the support groups. You can counteract this by having a group of defenders (whatever the equivalent will be in Ashes) that will protect this group.

    In no rude way: a lot of people are being exposed to Sandbox MMORPG PvP that have never experienced it before, and before I did I also thought "how could this work?". I started playing with some pvp guilds in Albion and listened to shotcallers/comms, and was amazed how tactical the game can actually get in seemingly "zerg" combat.

    Ya people are going to in for a surprise when they start pvping if they have been ignoring playing mmorpg siege content in the last like 10 years.
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    The preview about the caravan was amazing and I loved the transition to and from raft. The only thing I would point out is the in a IRL scenario, people would build the raft pointing away from the shore so that after it was built, they could just take off instead of having to turn around so that if the enemy were to show up, the raft would not take as much damage.

    Thank you for reading my complaint and keep up the good work. Can't wait to play the alpha 2, Bata 1 and 2 tests!
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    i will add feedback later but for now i will say , looks good but LONGEEER TTK please
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    Thanks for the stream that looked pretty awesome tbh i cant wait to try it out my self, but i do have couple of questions.

    Aren't u afraid that people will just stalk caravans instead of farming mats them selves? and dont you think players will be pissed every time they lose caravan to a point they might stop doing it?

    And lastly how does the loot from the caravan get distributed by the raid whether looted on spot or transported?
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    Just a few feedback points, i'll focus on where I'd like to see improvement so if I don't moan about something you've probably done alright!

    - Caravan movement. How can attackers hinder a haravan? Steven's tactic seemed to be if I keep driving then while the others are engaged I can just get distance.
    - Water traversal - were people able to swim unmounted as fast as the Raft? I feel in my head that it felt like they were too quick. I know that you have water current, wind speed etc. to consider so i'll take it with a grain of salt, but essentially I expect the raft to move slower than a mounted player on Land, but at max speed faster than a swimming player. If you want to pick up players from the shore you should have to slow down, I feel.
    - The raft movement seem to go from 0 to max speed pretty quickly. Could we get a more gradual acceleration/deceleration? This change in speed (and max speed) should also be affected by the conditions as well.
    - I was thinking about the Raft collision with the shore and I suppose it makes sense; you can't have it crash ONTO the shore. I am curious how collision with other sea vessels will be. The way things are looking I don't think Ships can be knocked around much.

    It's so hard to judge the combat because you specifically tailored it so that the bandits would have more people. With that in mind, I think that in an equal scenario of attackers vs defenders, both with the same number of players, same composition, exact same skill - the defenders should win since the Caravan should serve some sort of benefit; by design anyway. Obviously the skill/numbers/composition will change all that - but on equal footing; i'd like to see defenders advantaged. They have the most to lose.

    it still stands to be known, but as a "bandit" if you attack and lose, all you lose is "time" right? And I suppose some material costs in repairs... I mean in theory attackers have lost that same very time holding off the assault. I really think that we need a little more risk for attackers. Not as far as corruption, but maybe if the defenders successfully kill a player during a caravan event, they might salvage some money from their bodies. Some silver or whatever. Maybe the attackers get a temporary timed penalty to increase the cost of goods in the node. i.e. Merchants heard about your attempts to rob the caravan - we're increasing our prices temporarily.
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    SolvrynSolvryn Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    To help guide this conversation, here are a few thought starters you can choose from:

    How do you feel about the Caravan PvP Preview?

    Never had any doubts Intrepid was going to continue nailing their overall vehicle system, it looks stellar.

    What excites you about playing and interacting with other players and the Caravan System?

    The contention and conflict it brings, not to mention the amount of money bringing parts for it brings.

    Is there anything in particular you’re excited or concerned about regarding what was shown with the Caravan PvP Preview?

    The important parts that were shown off were stellar, the vehicle system, the traversing different landmasses, and the information on data obfuscation were all perfect.

    I look forward to seeing finished combat and not complete tab systems from 10 years ago, maybe a concern is Ashes during its displays doesn't quite have it's own recognizable style quite yet.

    Are there similar systems you’ve seen in other games that you like or dislike? If so, please explain!

    The combat itself just looks like previous titles such as WoW, AA, GW1; rather than inspired "from" those titles they look more like those titles in a copy pasta, instead of Ashes, that's it. I hope Ashes has it's own flare and uniqueness not offered from previous titles - something that separates it from the rest of the industry and makes it easily identifiable.
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    oOKingOooOKingOo Member
    edited February 3
    I like that it is an actual event.

    I like how you're approaching the raid groups; it makes sense to have groups of 8. Obviously, it could be more stylish, but I like that you see class HP and mana and buffs. The size and transparency should be adjustable.

    I like how the ranger invis works. You're more like transparent than invisible, and if you move too much, you're detectable, but if you stand still, you're basically invisible.


    8-10 abilities looks like a good number for a level 15 character.

    I think the tank's blue and the mage's blue from lightning abilities look too similar. I love how you can tell from the abilities' color who attacked you. For example, the green abilities come from rangers, the golden from clerics, but some of the tanks and mages' lightning abilities are hard to differentiate.

    It would be pretty cool to have a slot in a caravan where you can put a craftable weapon like a cannon or a potion launcher so one guy can give artillery support from the caravan.

    Summoning caravans is great. Can you summon the caravan early and have someone drive it so you can loot faster after killing them with the risk of them killing your caravan? How many people can spawn a caravan? If too many can do it, I think people will use it to form bigger caravans instead of spawning them in a node.
    Even if you can only put stolen goods into the spawned caravan, it will still be a problem because people will spawn their caravans in nodes and let guildmates rob them, transferring the goods into the spawned caravans and stacking them until they have like 10-20. Then they can move them at once with the whole guild protecting.

    The raft transition and raft look great.

    I like the distance of the abilities and the way the health bar works.

    I like the change on the caravan landing inventory dump.

    The black market is really cool, and I like the open houses.

    How do you feel about the Caravan PvP Preview?
    Things are looking really good.

    What excites you about playing and interacting with other players and the Caravan System?
    It allows people to gain materials without farming for them and thus gives meaning to gathering and protecting your goods from these people. It gives a lot of immersion into the game world. Also, finally receiving your reward will feel so much better after a long day of travel.

    Is there anything in particular you’re excited or concerned about regarding what was shown with the Caravan PvP Preview?
    The blue of the tank and the mage being too similar is my main issue in this stream. The colors are really important for split-second judgment in PvP.
    I'm really hyped to see people traveling around in the world, doing their stuff, moving caravans, gathering goods, slaying monsters. I think it's gonna feel way more alive than in your usual complete the main quest then do jobs and gear up games, where everybody just sits in the main city after a while.
    Also, I'm excited for the PvP and the politics that are gonna come with stealing, for example, a caravan full of rare goods from your enemy's guilds. I see so many future guild wars, and I'm super in for it.

    Are there similar systems you’ve seen in other games that you like or dislike? If so, please explain!
    Age of Wushu had a similar system, but it was just a daily to get guild points. You would do escorts and move them to a place a little bit outside the city. Other players could attack you and destroy your caravan and get a reward, or you would get a reward for delivering the escort.
    The rewards were really minor, though. There were also NPCs that could spawn and attack you.
    I think what you are doing is way cooler where you can actually loot what's inside the caravan and turn it into real money instead of being a minor reward.
    For the empyre !!!
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    Nerror wrote: »
    There was a lot to like, but I wonder/worry about a couple of things others also touched on:

    Unless the materials/goods are super-duper valuable, there is very little incentive for the attackers to spend all the effort to place a new caravan and haul the goods to a nearby node. Because that puts them at risk, and people are risk-averse in general. Without that being forced on the attackers, I foresee 99% of all caravan kills to just be a roaming gank-n-loot and moving on to the next caravan to progress in that skill tree, without them ever bothering to transport the stolen goods via caravan. This would quickly kill most of the caravan system and the game economy. There is zero chance I am ever launching a caravan with the current risk/reward balance.

    There is no risk for the attackers since we don't get XP debt in themed PvP like Caravan PvP. Sure, the reward in material goods/gold isn't great either, but the risk to the attackers have to at least come somewhat close to the risk the owner takes by deploying the caravan in the first place.

    In Eve Online, at least the attackers risk their ships and clones. There is a real potential cost to a failed attack, meaning it's taken more seriously by everyone involved. Without this in Ashes, we'll end up with players simply not using caravans, but instead hiring the group of players they would have hired anyway for protection to carry the goods manually anyway.

    Assuming this is all fixed, and the attackers or defenders make a successful run, we need some sort of easy UI to reward everyone involved. Forming a line and trading one by one is not a real solution.

    I am not sure how to best make attacking a caravan actually involve any kind of risk. Perhaps the first thing that needs to be changed is to give the attackers (only) normal death penalties including XP debt and all that entails. Not corruption obviously. It's a start at least. Give them a potential cost so they only go after the caravan if they actually want the goods. No penalties for the defenders at all.

    On top of that, force the attackers to spawn their own caravan to move any of the goods in any meaningful capacity, and only reward them for the kill in that caravan pvp skilltree once the stolen goods are safely moved to a node. They should essentially get nothing without taking on an equal risk themselves. Don't make it optional.

    He got 120 Basalt and 120 Rubys in like 30 minutes thats probably way quicker then you would gather 120 Basalt and 120 Rubys and worth alot of money and there were 2 material chests in the caravan there could be way more. Ofc I would use the caravan systhem to transport my goods becasue i will get more money that way. All you have to do is get friends or a guild. The risk on attacking a caravan in games like these can be higher then you think. This stuff can turn into guild wars pretty quick wich is great.
    For the empyre !!!
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    JhorenJhoren Member
    edited February 1
    I'll echo the others talking about how we need some risk for the attackers.

    Risk to reputation can't be counted on, because that varies hugely depending on the players involved and the server and politics and all that. It has to be built in economic risk/cost directly placed on each individual attacker, just like it is for the defender. If the attackers can pull off the attack without dying and then get their own caravan to move the goods to a node, more power to them. But I don't think they should get any rewards unless they experience the same risk as the defenders.

    The rest of the preview was overall good I think :smile: Perhaps the TTK is indeed a little fast, but I think we need A2 to start so we can get proper numbers on it.

    Edit: oh and yes I agree with the raft thing from the post below.

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    vahrovahro Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    First of all, it was a great livestream yesterday, thank you very much.

    On the whole, I liked what I saw there. The only exception was the raft.

    In my eyes, it lacked all the physics. There are very nice examples out there where the boat physics are implemented quite well. There's the game Archeage, but it was also well done in Black Desert Online.

    Please take a look at these games and adopt some things.

    For one, there is the acceleration and braking, which should not be instantaneous, but gradual. On the other hand, the steering in curves should also be sluggish. And thirdly, there should be consequences if the boat bumps into something.
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    Yenn0warYenn0war Member
    edited February 1
    First thing I gotta say, pvp looked fun even though it was a bit scripted, but I undersand that it was for showcase purposes. I am sure it will be way more chaotic. I am also aware that everything is work in progress.

    Here is my feedback:

    1. Water current is a neat thing, but will there be air current? Will that affect sea traversal?
    How will weather conditions affect water traversal? Will we see giant waves on the open sea? Will we use our sails in any capacity?
    Raft controls are a bit unrealistic, but that's the thing, I don't really know if you are aiming for realism. It rotates and changes its direction way to easily. I believe you should struggle to turn, especially if the water current works against you. Sea of Thieves and AC: Black Flag did amazing job with movement of waterborne vessel and water physics.

    2. Water shaders were great. Will there be different ones depending on body of water? I don't expect for swamp water to be the same color and transparency as sea water.

    3. Ball of Lightning sticks out like a sore thumb in massive pvp. Remove the outer ball part, leave the ball in the centre.

    4. Game is still a bit saturated with color and still a bit dark in some areas during the day. I understand its late noon, but c mon-Its almost like there is no bouncing lights present in the game. Some skills suffer from this unnatural lighting, like Absorption Field and Ball of Lighting.

    7. It seems you fixed some of the ice effects on mage spells. It looks way better.

    8. Looting the caravan seems okay when you cant stop and you have to destroy it, but that caravan stood still. Why would you destroy free caravan? Why would you spent currency on a new one when there is perfectly good one in front of you? Why would you go through all the trouble of moving the cargo in the new one? Maybe some acquisition mechanic should be in place if the owner of the caravan is dead and there is no one to guard it? Maybe there should be must-do mechanic like inspecting the loot before caravan can move? Like a bar that fills and reveals the loot like in Escape from Tarkov. Maybe when that bar is filled, you get the ownership of the caravan, but its labeled as stolen.

    Perhaps unimportant at this current stage, but your Kaelar armors are way too angular ( something mainly reserved for dwarves) and way too shiny and rough around edges. They needs some grit, more decoration ( embossing, etchings etc.) . Armor deforming is so immersion breaking when character breathes and twists its body.
    That helmet that Steven worn resembles Italo-Norman faceplate and I like it. There are so many irl types of helms irl that you can just copy/paste and nobody would have a problem with it since it looks cool. Look at soulsborn games-They literally just add historical helmets on plate armor and experiment with everything else. I could go from one plate knight set to another and tell you what's wrong with them and most of the issues are related to Kaelar head gear.
    I LOVE that you tweaked sword animation where it now rests on you shoulder when you are not in combat.
    Using Historical European martial arts (HEMA) as reference for attacks, skills and how you handle particular weapons would be wise.
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    Loved the latest livestream. Here are my thoughts so far:

    - Water looked great
    - Maybe change the raft acceleartion and breaking to be not instantaneous
    - I like the idea of not seeing the exact amount of health of enemy players as players are forced to look at i.e. which abilities (shield, healing, damage) are casted instead of staring at a health bar and icons of effects
    - The caravan system looks amazing. It adds incentive to socialize, creates tention between guilds and players and generally makes people interact.

    The games focus on PvP got me a little worried. I personally love pvp if done right, but there are lots of players who don't. There are countless examples of other games focused on PvP that died because of it. I don't want fundamental parts of the game to change, but I hope that the devs find a healthy balance between comitting to the current vision of the game and catering to enough players to make this game feel alive, both ingame and around the game on discord, youtube, twitch, etc.
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    KrystalKittenKrystalKitten Member, Leader of Men, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    I really enjoyed it. I liked the part at the end where Steven said they had to tweek the attackers so the outcome was predetermined. that made me feel better that this might be better then i thought.
    when things got on the water i loved how the current can effect the pacing and I know in time that water combat will be a thing, like what if steven's crew after stealing the cart engaged in a larger group with a better ship? (say the original caravan called in a favor from a large guild to get their stuff back) I'm sure in time this will be answered in time. thing Navel combat in life was you couldn't sink the ship or you would lose all the treasure, you had to disable it, so seeing the ability to disable a ship/caravan without completely destroying it could be interesting, especially if you could completely steal the caravan instead of destroying it and summoning your own.

    I loved the makeshift dock and the caravan turning into a raft. that was so cool!

    the attackers being on land attacking the ship was interesting but what if they jumped onto the ship for closer combat? is that possible? could they steal the raft?

    I'm really excited to see how this plays out it looks very well made.
    or in Bethesda terminology, this AAA game is ready to release and anything else is DLC

    nitpick section.
    the horses tails continued to wag after they were pked....poor ponies.
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    LinikerLiniker Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    I now had a chance to review and discuss the stream with my community, sharing some of our general feedback here:

    This stream was awesome! People were hyped up to see PvP I had over 100 at our Discord watch party that was a record lol

    Overall very positive impressions, the caravan system and combat is looking and working great surpassing expectations, some particular positive points were the way we can transport and drop/loot both commodities as well as materials, which is great, and the way we can have both options of quickly looting for less profit + summoning a caravan for extra profit is awesome as it extends the content and adds more risk if you are ganking an enemy territory, great stuff,

    some concerns about how much of the carvan loot should drop, some were saying the caravan owner should lose half of what he was carrying and that half should be lootable, others saying it should be a loss of 2/3, with 1/3 going back to the owner, 1/3 being lootable and 1/3 being destroyed (removed from the economy)

    the transition from land to river was 10/10, looked like a finished game, the water shaders and physics are awesome, overall caravan visuals are great, but some wished the raft didn't just suddenly stop and had some momentum in the water, but not too much to make it a pain to maneuver,

    most were very excited about this being a group-based event, players who experienced this system from silkroad, archeage, or EVE are very excited about it and have no concerns about balancing risk as this system itself is the definition of risk vs reward and it should be left to players dictate how it plays out, players are hoping that Mules really have a limited size inventory to push groups to use caravans and don't just do multiple mule trips,

    There was UI info lacking for showing the % bonus players are getting for selling that commodity in that particular node,

    as for the PvP and combat, overall its looking great, vfx and visuals as well as impact is shaping up nicely and in a good direction, a lot better compared to A1, performance is always the main concern, some players are wondering if DLSS 3 + FSR with Frame Generation will be implemented to testing to facilitate a performant and smooth experience, some referring to Throne and Liberty that has been able to host +300 player battles with excellent performance thanks to Frame generation tech even on UE4 and would like to see that for A2 showcases/testing

    some were particularly excited about the tank skills with the new dash and stomp adding extra mobility to the class, ranger is also looking great, stealth is a good approach instead of full invisibility and people are excited to see more classes and races besides just humans being shown,

    most were very happy about the L2 inspiration of not displaying enemy/unknown players HP numbers, this and no forced inspection does add a lot to the PvP interactions giving players uncertainty and that makes PvP a lot more exciting, some wished that we didn't even have the quarter bars displaying HP status, and definitely do not want to see it progress to being even more detailed with 6 or 8 bars shown, ideally it should be less than 4 bars or none,

    Finally, touching on the TTK (time to kill) part of the PvP combat showcased, I'll leave a reply I gave in a different thread that sums up the overall sentiments and concerns:
    Liniker wrote: »
    I think it wasn't fine at all, really concerning implications, usually, we can use the WIP or its just an alpha card, but Steven specifically said they are looking for feedback because they are happy with the current TTK, so this is valid criticism,

    if you analyze the showcase closely, the reason some players were still alive after 60 seconds is basically because they were either running, getting healed or weren't taking any hits,

    Ignoring Steven's character, because he was lvl 25, everyone was set at lvl 15 and had around 1k HP, and you can see people hitting other players for 300 or 400 damage, that means you could kill someone with literally 3 to 4 hits, now imagine this

    you farm for hours, and when you are returning to your node your screen instantly turns gray because you just got absolutely melted down by 2 rangers that were on stealth and they both critted you for 90% of your health and finished you off in less than 2 seconds, you didn't even had the time to know where they were, and I'm not talking about a group I'm talking about a duo of gankers,

    in a game with severe death penalties, this is absolutely horrible, players need a high enough TTK so they can fight back, pot, run, make a decision to whether fight or not, imagine that in dungeons, caravans, open-world farming etc, 2 seconds and you are gone, no time to react, for skill play to matter, just instant death

    look at this cleric dying in a 1v1 in literal 4~5 seconds vs a ranger with equal gear/level/stats

    AoC is currently using the same TTK as Korean MMOs where there is a high incentive for P2W with players getting so much power that they can burst down someone in a few seconds giving them that hit of dopamine for being so OP, this is not good for an MMO with loot drop, XP debt, gear degradation

    and I'm not even going to talk about how bad this gets in mass pvp where 5 mages will wipe out 20 players with meteors, and AoE spam will be meta, their original plan was for a base TTK of 30 to 60 seconds, it is currently no more than 5s and they apparently are happy with it, this really needs to be addressed bc it will make testing in A2 suck,

    fast TTK is bad for casual players, for streamers, for farmers and carebears, and its bad for actual PvPers, for Guilds, bad for massive PvP, fast TTK really only benefits gankers that want to burst you down in a second and run away, that's it
    Recrutamento aberto - Nosso Site: Clique aqui
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    How do you feel about the Caravan PvP Preview?

    Overall I think the preview was really good. I liked that the current system is already in place, and that we have water physics. The VFX are a bit much when there was a big battle but I know you are aware of that. There was minimal clipping which is a great step forward.

    What excites you about playing and interacting with other players and the Caravan System?

    What excites me the most is the opportunity to come up on a party doing a caravan run and potentially befriending them. It will also be nice to eventually know the best routes to go down, the best routes to ambush, really familiarizing yourself with your local physical geography.

    Is there anything in particular you’re excited or concerned about regarding what was shown with the Caravan PvP Preview?

    One thing that I was concerned about that was said in the showcase (not shown) was that boats can only be launched at harbours. I know they referenced large galleons for the sea, but what about small 1 person ships like the "whispwatcher"? I was thinking I could go far off up the river exploring and gathering herbs and take my little boat back up river to my freehold.

    Are there similar systems you’ve seen in other games that you like or dislike? If so, please explain!

    I have not played any MMORPGS so I have not seen other systems like this
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    ZiefZief Member
    edited February 1
    Just a thought here but as i was watching the pvp caravan video i had a cool idea come through. What if you had to make an additional choice to help deconstruct and rebuild the ship. Make 4 spots where people can go and help the transition move at a quicker rate. Could even put it as a caravan spec or tree. Where you can work on the transition but makes you completely vulnerable when doing so. This could be locking you in place take extra damage or what not would need to be tested. This would give you the choice do i defend and it take a little longer. Or do i help speed up the process but gimp the defense party to save time. Also you could even add in a failure rate where since your quickly building something breaks and you have a debuff to move slower or have to gather additional resources to complete the transition. Just a few thoughts i had.
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    Combat seems to be getting a bit visual heavy. Not the worse but watching a larger battle like that I could definitely see how it would escalate to being difficult to see. To slightly reduce the level of visual feedback I'd say make certain skills only viewable by the players affected, such as the tanks ability to absorb damage. There was a good number of blue lines cutting across the screen when that ability realistically only matters to the tank and whoever they are protecting, so making it so only they could view the line would reduce clutter imo. Maybe the same with the fighters distance closer that spawns a chain between them and their target, although that one has more utility and reason to be viewed by others imo.

    At the end of the stream Steven appeared to say that the only way to navigate rivers is by raft caravans which I hope isn't the case. If there were no smaller, river navigable boats I feel like that would give caravanners a weird advantage. If bandits couldn't have boats to run down caravans what would stop lucrative city nodes popping up along waterways, with traders spamming caravans up and down the river and avoiding the overland mechanic? And I say weird because what reason in world would there be for having rafts that can move wagons but not people? Not to mention my inner desire for some immersive fishing on a river boat.
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    The most interesting element of the livestream for me was learning that rangers had a stealth skill and how stealth characters looked like.

    At first I thought the visual was fine, but I don't know if it was only because the players were all part of the same raid, because later I saw someone else stealthed and the effect was a bit too strong, too close to invisibility, for my taste. At least for the lighting conditions, I'd be fine with this in deep shadows or darkness, but not on open ground, on a clear day. Hard to say.

    Not sure how I feel about the caravan system to be honest. I know I have little interest on being on the attackers' side, but I've always known that I would be more interested in defending than stealing. I also have little interest in running a caravan for myself: not being motivated by bigger "rewards", it tends to make the risks disproportionately large. But that's a me thing, so...
    Be bold. Be brave. Roll a Tulnar !
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    MilotrixMilotrix Member, Founder
    So here's my feedback:

    1) A problem I have seen in many games, including by the looks of it in this one, is the fact that in larger scale pvp battles, you have spell effects going everywhere and you can't tell whose is what, whether it's from an ally or foe, and it becomes a chaotic mess. Often in games like this I (and many others I know) will just turn off allied spell effects. Especially with the big lightning balls. There needs to be a clear red circle under enemy non-targeted spell effects to inform you that you need to dodge it, or perhaps allow an option to change the colour of allied/enemy non-targeted spell effects. Additionally, please consider making it so that these spell effects do not become an overwhelming chaotic mess of fireworks that makes it difficult to see what is going on.

    2) Going onto the river with a water raft seems to provide no significant advantages- Being on land, you are hidden to an extend by trees and terrain, making it less likely that bandits will find you. But on river, you can be seen unobstructed from long distances away, there are choke points that you can be attacked from, and there are limited number of beaches where you can land on, which makes bandits more likely to find you. Either the transition from land to water and vice versa needs to occur much faster, or the river needs to provide a significantly higher movement speed.

    On open ocean it would be a different story, but on rivers, it seems like unless you have a high number of people to defend, it would be better to just travel by land.

    3) Being a caravan defender seems to have too many disadvantages- I know based on experience from other games is that many pvpers specialize in hunting caravans. As an attacker, you have nothing to lose, you have the element of surprise, you just go in and attack. As a defender, you are slowed by the caravan, and are limited by the terrain etc, you would require a substantially high number of people to defend it. As such, the rewards need to reflect this. Perhaps if you are the actual owner of caravan loot, then you get more gold for turning it in. Archeage had a pretty good system that even if bandits steal your loot and turn it in, you still get a small portion of the gold from it.

    4) Which brings me to my next point, that is, caravan system needs to be viable for smaller groups as well, not just big ones. There needs to be varying sizes of caravans, perhaps with smaller caravans for smaller parties being able to move faster, while bigger caravans carry more, move slower, but provide exponentially higher rewards for everyone.

    Discussion Questions:
    a) How do you feel about the Caravan PvP Preview?
    Overall it was great, I really liked seeing the larger scale pvp, however, we didn't get to see much in terms of caravan skills in action.

    b) What excites you about playing and interacting with other players and the Caravan System?
    The potential to work together, to achieve mutual goals etc, is definitely exciting.

    c) Is there anything in particular you’re excited or concerned about regarding what was shown with the Caravan PvP Preview?
    Yes, a major concern I have is that if pvp is going to be limited to caravans and node wars, then generally the biggest and only ongoing source of pvp is going to be the caravans. This means there not only will there be big hardcore guilds that will specialise in pvp, which is difficult to deal with on its own, but there will be *multiple* pvp guilds of varying sizes, whose main goal will be to go around searching for caravans to kill and loot... This is going to make it very difficult for more casual players, with smaller groups/guilds etc to participate in caravan transport, and I imagine it can potentially get to a point where it is too frustrating and too difficult to successfully transport a caravan with smaller numbers against the many pvp guilds I imagine will be, that people will just not bother doing them.

    In a game like Archeage, where you had factions, you were safe as long as you were within your allied territory, and in territories where pvp is not allowed etc... and if enemy faction members came to attack you, your allied faction would help you out. However, as far as we are aware, AOC doesn't seem to have factions, or territories where you can be safe... which means absolutely anyone can be your enemy... and this truly raises red flags and concerns for how this system will be handled without turning people off from doing it. With limited information about specifics of the game systems, I cannot offer possible solutions at this stage.

    Are there similar systems you’ve seen in other games that you like or dislike? If so, please explain!

    Yes in Archeage. It was a good system, but it got to the point where commodities in most locations were over-saturated and barely gave any returns in gold, that it made them not worth doing. So I hope it won't be the same in AOC.

    Concluding thoughts:

    I think the game desperately needs other forms of pvp in the open world. For example, chests that spawn with loot, that makes the area around them free pvp (similar to Albion). As well as other risk/reward systems. Perhaps certain territories become free pvp zones during certain times, during which mobs give more xp/drop more loot etc, or spawn treasure chests and such.

    The game also needs to have some kind of reward points for pvp, ie. when you defeat enemies, you get points, which can be spent in some kind of store.

    Lastly, and importantly: The game needs to make room for skill and strategy to be important. It should not just be about who has the best gear, and most numbers, but also who is the best skilled and makes best strategic plays. In Albion online fro example, smaller groups with better coordination and skill, can take and defeat larger less organised groups. This definitely needs to be the case in AOC too.

    Cheers, and keep up the good work :)
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    How do you feel about the Caravan PvP Preview?

    Looked great! There are a whole lot of possibilities and variations of battles that can happen. Navel transportation/piracy is one that comes to mind. Castle seige supply lines are another interesting variation.

    What excites you about playing and interacting with other players and the Caravan System?

    Coordination with other players on both attacking and defending. Determining primary and secondary routes. Shot calling targets, laughing at other people's mistakes, and getting rich at the expense of others. The pirates' way.

    Is there anything in particular you’re excited or concerned about regarding what was shown with the Caravan PvP Preview?

    The focus target archer party gave me L2 archer party nostalgia. I am sure Steven remembers those, I think he played bishop? I would be excited to see how water vessels might add to the mix. Archage harpoon ships were hilarious not just from the strategy they added harpooning onto another ship to slow them down or stop them, but, also from the crazy physics interactions with the environment that made everyone laugh. Would love to see defenders/attackers using navel vessels as a way to give themselves an edge.

    Are there similar systems you’ve seen in other games that you like or dislike? If so, please explain!

    Archage was a near-perfect game that was ruined by a greedy company. Its navel combat was a blast... Their caravan system was much more basic but the idea was super fun. The dynamic between the nimble harpoon ships and large galleons made for a lot of late-night fun looking for marks on the high seas. It would be neat if there were even smaller vessels for river-based combat that might make for other tactical pvp advantages if planned right.
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    The Caravan needs a defense mechanic. like spell/shield that neglects damage so you can defend your Caravan better.

    I agree that it seemed like defending the caravan lacked options. It seemed like there were some other abilities available to the driver that we didn't see get used.

    One idea here might be to allow players who are escorting the caravan to 'get on' the caravan. Doing so would remove their normal abilities and put them in a 'seat' that gives them some defensive abilities to fend off attackers without going straight up player vs player/player vs zerg. Perhaps as the cost of slowing the caravan speed but increasing it's armor, etc.
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    MalakMalak Member
    Nerror and others point out some very significant faults here.

    The effort going into making caravans viable seems strange to me. There is a huge risk in forming a caravan and the party needed to protect it. It's a slow process and even the unloading seems clunky and time consuming. The reward certainly does not make all of that worth it at the moment.

    I can easily see griefer roaming parties just running around destroying enemy caravans and leaving the loot to de-spawn.
    And this tactic is made even more viable due to the fact there are no fast teleport options in the world, making it very difficult to get back to your loot in time to salvage it or start up another caravan.

    In the whole of that video (although the graphics were amazing), there was only about 5 mins of what I would call FUN... AND that is only because the attackers had the ability to TELEPORT back to an area close to the caravan (I get that this was done for the video, but it does point out the fact that in actual game play... there would have likely only been one chance to get your loot back... if even that) Run Forest Run!...

    This also opens up the idea of supply camping. Kill the caravan guards and then kill the caravan... hang around until others come to salvage it... kill them. Rinse/Repeat. Allowing this type of grief farming only makes play frustrating, not fun. Big guilds may have the manpower to prevent this, but smaller guilds would likely be pooched.

    I have seen less bling at a fireworks event than I saw in that combat. I hope we can tone down graphics because that all looked like a blurry chaotic mess... looked cool, but still a mess... Can't imagine what a 100+ vs 100+ battle would look like? How do you even select a target in all that?... TAB TAB TAB

    Pretty strong critique, don't sweat it. I love the direction you guys are going with the game.
    I'm not one of those guys that crafts for fun... so you can see where I'm coming from. Deliberate time sinks in any game only makes the game worse.

    Just remember, making things to REAL in a video game is not necessarily making better and anything that ends up being FRUSTRATING, only leads the player away from the game.
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    ArtharionArtharion Member
    edited February 1
    The risk/reward ratio will be tested in Alpha-2 for sure, and there, they will see how their systems truly are and make changes based on how people interact with the loot mechanics and PvP. However, from my experience, I believe it's very likely they will end up stipulating that some items can only be transported by caravans if they want caravans to be used.

    My experience playing games with full-loot or half-loot systems (like Ashes) is that people ultimately opt for the safest route to perform certain actions, specially those where you need to spend a lot of time like gathering resources to get profit from them. It sounds great to take your caravan on a journey to transport many resources, and probably people at the beginning of the alpha-2 will use them because is the "new thing", but after a few weeks/months, when everyone will want to min/max and get to the meta, they will realize that once it gets destroyed and you see how a lot of hours of farming go to waste, many will choose the safe path. If a node spends hours farming resources, they might prefer to gather several players and transport the resources themselves, even if it means 2 trips or more, rather than risk using a caravan and becoming a "big slow piñata" where gankers will get no punishment since it is an Open-PvP Event. Moreover, mega-guilds will be able to have 50-100 players online to carry the items individually instead of using a caravan, so if they are attacked, they can disperse and save part of the loot.

    I know it needs to be tested, and I might be wrong, but if they want caravans to be used in the meta, I believe they will have to make that some items can only be transported by caravans.
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    Happy to share some thoughts on the caravan subject now that we've seen it. I very much enjoyed the stream!

    My first thought was that the options for attacking a caravan en route seemed to be in lack. It might be cool to have some siege/weaponry that players can deploy to slow the movement of the caravan, redirect it, or lay on damage in a manner other than just attacking the caravan unit with weapons and abilities. There was mention of bridges - would those be permanent fixtures like roads, or can bridges be destroyed real time?

    Having options like that would force the defenders to have to develop tactics to handle those attackers as opposed to just turtling and fighting anyone who approaches. Kind of like how the castle siege stuff works in ESO.

    If caravans are meant to be a major portion of the overall gameplay, then I'd like to see more build out in terms of attack and defense abilities.

    Are caravans meant to be guild-level events, or are they meant to be 'pug-able'? Either way, I think more work on distributing rewards of both defending caravans and attacking them should be sussed out.

    The thought of turning in a caravan that you attacked and 'took over' without destroying it, and then the rewards still going to the original owner of the caravan was humorous to me. Imagining some bandits rushing to cash in on their bounty only to find the vendor gave the goods to the original owners seems a bit odd. Perhaps certain types of nodes/vendors would do that while others would allow for you to cash in with someone else's caravan and give you the black market rate.

    I'll resound some of the combat sentiments already posted - even with a smaller scale group v group event like we saw there, the screen was way too busy for my tastes.

    Nice job! Looking forward to seeing what comes next =}
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    CadacCadac Member
    edited February 1
    I am wondering if a Mule could carry an unopened crate?
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    VarinoVarino Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    The TTK time needs to be longer please
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    MissionCreepMissionCreep Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    What is the estimate or goal for average percentage of the playerbase's time spent on Caravans? It feels like it could be a LOT.

    They are trying to achieve upwards of 100% of equipment being player crafted (not lower level stuff), with 100% of materials coming from player actions.

    Materials are extremely inefficient to move manually, so caravans will account for the majority of material movement. Not 100% of course (plus many materials will be used in-house without transit) but over 50% by volume, surely, will need to be moved by Caravan.

    Bear in mind that anytime a caravan gets robbed, goods are lost (some are gained but it's not a zero-sum game) so that will add to necessary Caravan time across the server.

    Then, of course some or even many players will run around "adventuring" without doing caravans, but for the economy to work, many more players will have to transport goods. And it can't fall to a handful of players, because then the Caravans would be too easy to rob.
    I suppose in some instances, caravan guard NPC's will be available, but I'm assuming they'll be pretty terrible.

    I'm a little worried that we're looking at a huge time investment by some players in Caravans--which amount to escort missions--to make this economy happen, and the potential consequences of that.

    I'm personally totally fine with some Caravan-ing! I'm just imagining how this could be very difficult to get right.

    On the other hand, the great thing is that this can be managed pretty easily by simply adjusting how much a caravan can carry, and how fast it can go, by buffing the Caravan components. [And potentially increasing NPC guards if participation is an issue.]

    So at any point, Intrepid can tweak those numbers without having to re-vamp the system.
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