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MalenkoMC

Can we get a redo? (Long Post, but needs a read)

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Trendy,

I've sat here on a weekly basis, playing this game that is very fun to me.  I got about 500 or so hours in before I decided to join the IMPACT clan.  The fact that this game has clans playing it is enough for me to know that it is a solid game.

Then you went and screwed the pooch.  

I'm not sure how much planning went into the game, but I don't think your team thought about this the right way when it came to "how to release the updates."  The game was semi balanced, then you release the Abyss Lord (AL).  He was WAY OP, but you told us that he was at the level that you saw ALL heroes being at.  So we were ok with it, for a bit.  Eventually the game became WAY TO EASY with only using AL archers.  Again you told us to hold on, it will get more difficult.  Then you released the EV2 and she was just as OP, cool another hero on the level of AL, still too easy, and actually now easier.  

Then you released this last update.  Storm Gloves had a glitched issue, no worries, "we will fix that issue."  But rather than just fix the issue, you nerfed the gloves as well.  My biggest problem with this, why nerf something that is broken?  You don't even know how it acts in game!  Oh wait, you had the testers test?  Did you have them test with the NEW level of enemies?  I get the feeling you will be buffing these gloves (and the Betsy Polearm) after the enemy buff update.


So the redo I was asking about.  Here is what I have in mind and, imo and likely the opinion of others, it's how it should have been done in the first place.


Step 1:  Pull the last update.  Yep, just pull it out, put us back to before that update even came out.  Can't do it because of the passive changes?  Fine, set the original 4 heroes back to their old levels, keep the passives and let it ride from there.

Step 2:  Push the update with the enemy buffs.  This should have been your first move, imo.  This would allow people to play a MORE difficult game now.  This would bring back the strategies part of the game and cause us to use and try various towers and builds to try and beat the game.  People would be back to "can't get past NM2, wtf?" or "progression seems walled at NM3" and those types of comments.  This would let you know where the balance needs to start.

Step 3:  Balance each original hero one by one.  Start with your favorite if you want.  Get him spec'd the way you want him to be and in the same levels of AL and EV.  This would also give you the option to put out a new skin for each hero (money maker option).  But at the same time, it still has the game as a challenge for us players.  Now we get to mess with a "new" hero and see how he can help us beat the new enemies.

Step 4:  Continue to balance once all heroes are at the same levels.  Easy way to test this?  Use your test cheats, max out all possible gear/passives/etc so that you can see exactly the maximum possible for each hero (this should actually be part of Step 3 for each hero).  Then you know the current limits and can adjust each hero accordingly.  Rework Pets, they are atrocious right now.  There are only a select few that actually get used right now (Dragolich 1&2, Bearkira, and anything with Poison Tips is usually what I see in Endgame), so something needs to be done!

Step 5:  Move to Beta:  2 years in Pre-Alpha/Alpha is way too long.  If you did step 3 and 4 correctly, Beta should last less than 3 months.

Step 6: Final Release:  Now you can start with the new characters, maps, skins, pets, etc.  Stuff that will make you money in the long run.  


At this point, 7.13.2016, I am still playing and loving the game.  I just feel like you guys have dropped the ball when it comes to planning your releases and are not REALLY listening to the community at all.  I think you guys say you are listening, but you aren't.  You have your agenda, and that's cool, but the players are not enjoying it.

IMPACT was close to 100 members with 10-30 active at all times when I joined.  Since then, we are lucky to have 5 active at any given time that are playing DD2.  Even the members who are testers will play something else now once they have finished their testing for the day.  What does that say about the current state of the game?  When people who "work" for you don't play your game, how can you expect it to get better? 

If I was Trendy, I'd pretty much FORCE everyone in the company to solely play DD2.  No one plays ANYTHING ELSE, until the game is in Beta.  Once it is in Beta, start branching off in small clusters so that you can gather up new ideas.  You may come back and say something like "all our employees play our game."  I can almost guarantee they don't play it as much as they should.  Here is one example based on what I have seen recently:

Latest Dev Stream:  Collins (I believe) is playing.  Everyone on the stream is expecting the developers to play on the HIGHEST Tier of difficulty.  Collins, playing on NM3, I believe.  You guys are showing off the Gunwitch on this stream.  Collins builds out the map and begins to play.  He looks like he knows what he is doing.  The build looks solid.  Gets into one wave and the Ogre shows up.  He's using the Gunwitch and all of a sudden switches to his HUNTRESS to take down the Ogre?!?!?!  WHAT?!?!?!?  The Gunwitch is being showcased as this amazing new DPS character and he has to switch to his Huntress to take down the Ogre?  WOW!!!  That right there told half the people, that are still part of IMPACT, that she was going to be worthless as a DPSer.  BUT, we still support Trendy, so we picked her up and we are using her, yep she is pretty weak... oh well, maybe she will get better.

This situation is exactly why I asked for the redo.  If the enemies would have been harder that current and Collins had to switch to his Huntress cause she does more DPS, we would have understood.  But the fact that these were still EASY enemies and he switch away from the hero being showcased, shows me that this was not well planned.  Definitely NOT a great showcase leading up to the release of the Gunwitch, imo.


Overall, the game is great!  I love that you stuck with the DD1 Tower defense style.  Not so much the limited amount of towers, but still towers.  I love the characters.  I love the new heroes and re-imagination of heroes.  I love the maps and re-imagination of old maps.  But what I don't love is the process that was chosen to "fix" this game.  EVERYONE knows that the old heroes needed a buff to compete with AL and EV, everyone did.  But after AL and EV, you should have made it HARDER, not easier.  As much as I love that my 400k archers will melt just about any level or my EV beams will kill just about anything on contact, I'd much rather have to actually think about my build than just melt everything or instakill them.


So please Trendy.  Don't take this post as hate, but as LOVE.  This is truthfully coming straight from the heart of a player who loves the game and hopes that it will reach it's full potential.  You just need to get out of your own way and listen to the people who are actually playing it.  Thanks for being awesome developers.  You have a great start here, but you need to finish strong quick before you lose your playerbase!  HELP ME TRENDY, you are my only hope!


TL;DR - READ IT, it deserves the read and your opinion or suggestions!

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Actually, your step 1 makes no sense. First of all they can't pull an update back. Second of all, you need to rebalance as much as you can the game before entering the strategic revamp, it is the best move. The revamp's purpose is to redesign the game and make it balanced again, correcting the current mistakes. If you enter the revamp with unbalanced heroes, it is going to unbalanced what is supposed to balance. 

Basically they are going to enter the same cycle in which they are stucked: one thing is OP, a meta appears, they try to balance it and create another meta, etc. 

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The meta is always going to happen.  There are too many followers in the world for a meta not to happen.  People are always going to see something that works and try to match it for their own success.  But regardless this isn't really about the meta.


It is totally possible to roll back an update.  All they have to do is replace the file on the servers with a backed up copy of an old version.  BAM rollback complete!


That said, I also gave an option for them for Step 1 if they couldn't roll back the update.  Just patch the heroes back to their original settings and keep the rest of the update.  Then move on to Step 2.  It would totally work.


People are complaining about the game being too easy.  They used to complain about it being too hard.  All of this to the extent that they did a community vote on it and it turned out that we like MORE CHALLENGE!!!  So why would they start the Revamp with making it EASIER?!?!?  I don't understand it and neither do many of my teammates.  Fact is, we as gamers want/need the challenge.  So if they had given us the Enemy segment of the Revamp first, we would have been in love with the game again rather than complaining about the new stuff.  

Then they would have started with the original 4 heroes and we could have been able to play test them ourselves for a bit.  Then they would be able to see what needs buffed at that point.   I say buffed because the enemies would be your baseline.  You set that baseline to what you want, then adjust the heroes to fit into that baseline.

10M HP Ogre takes 10mins to kill, probably need a buff somewhere (depending on the build used).


We as a community need to get away from asking for a nerf.  We should only be asking for a buff, whether that be on a hero or an enemy.  No one likes to feel weaker.  No one likes to feel too strong either.   We all want that balance.  But why does the balance always have to make us feel weaker?

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@MalenkoMC quote:


People are complaining about the game being too easy.  They used to complain about it being too hard.  All of this to the extent that they did a community vote on it and it turned out that we like MORE CHALLENGE!!!  So why would they start the Revamp with making it EASIER?!?!?  I don't understand it and neither do many of my teammates.  Fact is, we as gamers want/need the challenge.  So if they had given us the Enemy segment of the Revamp first, we would have been in love with the game again rather than complaining about the new stuff.  


I can think of two reasons:

  1. The strategic revamp (enemies, their immunities, enemy clusters, etc) is a lot more work than rebalancing the heroes. Once the heroes are rebalanced, it should be easier to tell if the enemies are rebalanced correctly.
  2. If the enemies would have been rebalanced before the heroes, the game would have become very hard and frustrating for a huge amount of players. I understand how you seek challenge and I would have been curious too how this would have turned out. I just think doing it the other way round would have turned away a lot more players from the game.

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@Dreizehn quote:


@MalenkoMC quote:


People are complaining about the game being too easy.  They used to complain about it being too hard.  All of this to the extent that they did a community vote on it and it turned out that we like MORE CHALLENGE!!!  So why would they start the Revamp with making it EASIER?!?!?  I don't understand it and neither do many of my teammates.  Fact is, we as gamers want/need the challenge.  So if they had given us the Enemy segment of the Revamp first, we would have been in love with the game again rather than complaining about the new stuff.  


I can think of two reasons:

  1. The strategic revamp (enemies, their immunities, enemy clusters, etc) is a lot more work than rebalancing the heroes. Once the heroes are rebalanced, it should be easier to tell if the enemies are rebalanced correctly.
  2. If the enemies would have been rebalanced before the heroes, the game would have become very hard and frustrating for a huge amount of players. I understand how you seek challenge and I would have been curious too how this would have turned out. I just think doing it the other way round would have turned away a lot more players from the game.

But I think that doing this way has turned away a lot of the veteran players.  Maybe they figure the new people coming in a better than the old from a money perspective?  I mean, I've bought all the DLCs (except the hero one since I have them all), so I can see where new wallets would be better.  But from a veteran's perspective, it just doesn't feel right.


I guess this post really won't mean anything.  But I had to get it off my chest.  I just feel like, after this update, it was all planned wrong.  I feel like the enemies should have been the baseline, not the heroes.  I guess we will see how it ends up...  I think they said they wanted to be out of Beta before 2018, right?

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OP, I think your suggestions would do veeery little but piss customers off and not solve the problem, which, if I had to guess from where I sit, is less that the game is 'too easy' and more that the end game is stagnant.

First off, 'rolling back' the update is a horrible idea. A class and several cosmetics were in that update. Those are sold for money. Rolling it back entirely would be potentially illegal, and putting together an update that was 'the previous patch, but with the Gunwitch' is not a worthwhile investment.

Second, just straight buffing enemies would be a temporary measure. The folks playing the game nonstop would blow past them and get back to the ceiling eventually. At best, the idea buys you a bit of time. At worst, your idea negatively impacts the experience of folks NOT at the endgame yet.

Balancing the heroes up one by one wouldn't be a TERRIBLE idea. It might feel a bit crappy to do it one at a time if they don't hit a customers favorite first, but put the order to an influence vote, and keep some guys on hand to bounce ideas in a preproduction for whichever class isn't the top priority, and that'd work well.

Moving to beta and full release would be good, but not until the major problems are fixed, of which the stagnant endgame is a big one.

Now, I'm NOWHERE NEAR being able to do NM4 (I can comfortably do NM2) yet, but I imagine those who've BEEN at NM4 for a while have run out of things to do. They have optimization and that's it. They can do anything in NM4 in their sleep, but that's the pinnacle.

What the game really -needs- is a permenantly upscaling endgame, something like Diablo 3's Greater Rifts, which perpetually upscale incrementally. Higher levels of Nightmare would throw out harder enemies the higher you went, and those enemies would disgorge higher tier loot, with higher base stats and a higher item power. THAT would provide the difficulty you'd crave, and serve as a great stopgap while work gets done on strategic revamps and other content. What's more, if it's done as just a mathematical equation, it'd be light on resources, and infinitely scalable. All you'd need then is to find the right multipliers per nightmare tier.

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@MalenkoMC quote:Step 5:  Move to Beta:  2 years in Pre-Alpha/Alpha is way too long.  If you did step 3 and 4 correctly, Beta should last less than 3 months.

I lol'd at this.

If anything the current state of the game proves that it has to stay in alpha for at least another year. Beta means most of the game is already well fleshed out and its not even remotely close to that point. If Trendy moved to beta in its current state id actually have to disown Trendy completely. I dont even want to this game to leave Alpha until it becomes as fun as DD1. Ever since i started playing its been a huge disappointment and thats why i havent even touched it in the last 6 months except for a couple minutes to try out the last update. They have pushed out some nice updates but the core gameplay is just stupidly boring compared to what DD1 was and i hope they are trying to go back to the DD1 roots because that game always had something to do in it from farming gear upgrades or farming for gold or items to sell to level up that piece of gear with a 200+ max level or even just doing difficult challenges and achievements.

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At this time I know what everyone is saying, but you cannot please everyone this is what I think and I said it before if you balance the enemy first you have a base point of what to do next. So, you take one by one of the heroes and buff them according to the enemy like that you do not make a mistake of overpowering gear.  Forget about which hero they buff first. They should wait until they can buff them the right way. No only good for the older players but the new ones to come as well.  What I am saying is fix the bugs in the game first. For example, the lagging of the game. I know it is hard to fix each bug if you do  when you have the next update fewer things to fix.


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