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The Jason Order

Minimizing Player Frustration

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With the release of Onslaught comes a whole slew of new content and features. Some good, some great, some... frustrating. Let's take a look at some of the more common complaints I've been seeing and hearing and think of some ways we can address them.

1. Progress. Losses on later maps of a floor feel extremely frustrating. Losing on map 3 of a floor is a loss of an hour or more. Sometimes the loss isn't even your fault. Bugs, pathing issues, random projectiles hitting cores across the map, you name it. You occasionally lose for no legitimate reason, and are faced with the arduous process of starting over after having made zero progress. It's even worse if you disconnect. I've seen streamers lose Map 3 wave 5 to Lady Orks running a marathon in another direction to a core across the map. I was talking to a friend who disconnected on Wave 5 Map 3 and just logged out.

  • Potential Solution 1: Save progress each map.
  • Potential Solution 2: Allow players a certain number of "lives" per day.
  • Potential Solution 3: Allow players to retry a certain number of times per floor.
  • Potential Solution 4: Allow players to purchase retries for gold / medals.

All of these have potential issues, but some form of mitigation against bad luck would go a long way towards reducing the frustration involved with only "saving" progress every 1+ hours .

2. Grouping. I can't play with my friends. I've been hearing this a lot. The game has always had issues with its social aspects, and Onslaught pushes this even further by massively segregating the player base.

There's no easy solution here, but the current system separates players by 10-20 hours of mindless drudgery to partially catch up to your friends.

3. Ancient Power. Prestiging for the first time is extremely unattractive and undesirable. Losing 100s of hours of progress for a 1% power gain that won't even be felt until you reach the end game again, which is... potentially 100s of hours away. Other games with a prestige system in place offer substantially better rewards or have reduced time to re-earn what you've lost. Dungeon Defenders 2 has neither. Instead, they offer infinitely stacking rewards to gold and exp that will become a huge problem later on for the health of the game but start out mediocre.

  • Increase the power of Ancient Power. They are extremely underwhelming until the very very late game in which all players have multiple and large Ascension bonuses. As is, players will literally not even notice them at all until 200+ hours in.
  • Reduce the time needed to Prestige. Allow a minimum floor based on your highest progress. Make it to 200? Clearly you are good enough to not need to start on floor 1.

4. Player Agency. Random Random Random. Every map is random. Every lane is random. Random is random. At some point players will want to play a certain lane setup on a certain map. They are never given this option. They are never even allowed to play a certain map. I'm personally fine with less rewards if I pick a specific map, but as it stands, there is no option for me at all. I feel like I have no choice in what I want to do, and it feels awful.

  • Potential solution 1: You can pick your first map of Trials. Then streaks are random. Loot is weighted towards win streaks. Players can now pick a map they want, or progress on an easier one (or just spend time really figuring out one map).
  • Potential solution 2: Practice mode. Practice any map, and maybe any lane combinations / mutators. Not sure how feasible this is on the tech end.
  • Potential solution 3: You can pick your first map on each floor of Onslaught. Really, what's the harm here? Maybe one map is picked 100% of the time. Maybe then it's time for some slight DU adjustments.

Trendy has shown that they are responsive to feedback. Not always in the ways that people want, but they do listen, and occasionally they do make changes that go against what they originally planned. Let's make our voices heard. Now that Onslaught is out, it's time to shift the direction of development towards quality of life changes.


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Fantastic feedback, and the formatting is just:

w6ykb_s-200x150.gif

Thanks for this, we'll be looking over this (and the other awesome feedback provided so far). 

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These are exactly some thoughts I've been having.  Here are some of my preferred solutions:

1. Solution to the frustration of losing and restarting on first map of a floor: Give us one retry per map on a floor, and if we don't need to retry on a particular map we can bank it for our current run.  For instance, if I do the first map on my first try on floor 57, I retry once on the second map, I've got two retries left when I get to the new temple map.  When I retry, the specific lane schedules and modifiers won't change.

This specifically helps with players learning new strategies, giving us a buffer to try things and not lose tons of progress.

2. Solution to it being difficult to play with friends because we are at different levels: Let us play at the next 3 map floor above us, wherever that is.  For instance, if I need to complete floor 55 next and I have a friend who has unlocked floor 60, we can both play 57 together and then I can play 60 with my friend.  Furthermore, once we get to the place where every floor is 3 maps, let us still go 3 floors above us (so at 65, if I have a friend at 70 we can play 68 together, and then 70).

 The loot difference isn't that great, and it will basically save us a third of the time in progression if we have friends who further.  It opens up the possibility for a boosting strategy, but at least in the current game I really don't think that it would be an issue.  It simply helps reduce the grind, and cutting the grind down to at most 1/3 of what it was is a good advantage, but certainly not game breaking, and more friendly to resets.

3. Ancient powers. I don't have much to add here, actually, except that I would like to be able to earn more than one ancient power if I go further in floors.  For example, for every 5 floors past 65 that I haven't achieved before, I should get an extra ancient power.  So if I make it to 75 on my first playthrough, I get 3 ancient powers (and all other bonuses of resetting 3 times), but then if I make it to 80 I get only 2 ancient powers (1 for 65, and 1 for each 5 past my old record of 75).  I'm also a huge fan of not resetting back to floor 1, and at some point being able to actually keep all the gear I farm.

4. Solutions to lack of player agency. I want to go further with player choices.  Reduce the current gold/experience by half, and then give players a bunch of options to check, and for each option they select (which represents a further restriction), they get a 20% bonus to gold/experience.  If they choose 5 options, get a bonus shard in addition to other rewards, and if 10, guaranteed legendary drops from the chest.  Here's an example for the options we could choose to use or not use:

  1. Random map choice (if unchecked, players get to choose the map, except for the obligatory new temple maps)
  2. Include geodes
  3. Include cyborks
  4. Include frost cyborks (whatever their name is)
  5. Include assassins
  6. Include hex throwers
  7. Include kobolts (the ones from C7)
  8. Include lady orcs
  9. Include second tier of lane modifiers
  10. Include third tier of lane modifiers

Here, I refer to tiers of lane modifiers.  By default include about a third of them in Onslaught (the ones that restrict our builds the least).  Classify a third of them as second tier, and the final hardest third as third tier.  I don't know all the modifiers, so it's hard to say what goes here, but for instance the modifier that enemies must be affected by statuses to be damaged would definitely be third tier.



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I would like to point out the "I can't play with my friends" is not true.

I believe the correct statement is "I can't join my higher level friends and get carried"

You can join floors below you so yes you can play with your friends just at the lowest friends level.

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They been getting feedback on Day 1 of people not liking random maps, even with many solutions suggested no sign of any change.  Really comes down to priorities though.  We may be heard but if its last on their priority list we will not see any change for a year or 2.

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@mindlessdefender quote:

We may be heard but if its last on their priority list we will not see any change for a year or 2.

It's an active discussion, and was for this game mode. There's still iteration that can be done, but we've got some things we're cooking up regarding this to be the best fit for the game and player desires. :)

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A really good and constructive summary of so many forum-topics after the release of PotA with also very nice ideas for doing things in another, i also think better way. Thx for that, especially The Jason Order and lekkin007!

And lawita seems to share this opinion, which is also nice to see.

Normally im not a fan of all-inclusive statements, but in this case i have to say, that i like all mentioned examples for solutions more than the current status of the game, some more, some less - plz dont take it to hard @trendy :)

I could justify now or do also some proposals but i dont know how we want to go on with this thread if we want to avoid, that its earlier or later just another "suggestions"-thread.

Is there in general a way to differ good suggestions (many players like it, trendy like it and its possible to do it) from not so good/ bad suggestions?

I think dd2 have a really nice community with lots of eloquent people who also have lots of experience in playing games. If there would be a way to identify the most wanted changes respectively solutions it could be really helpful to change things in a player-friendly way, which also should help to increase the playerbase of dd2, which also should help trendy in diffrent ways.

A ingame reward-system (unique skins, items, pets) for players who have made suggestions, which finally make their way into the game, could be also a good motivation.

Dont know if something like this is realistic for dd2, but maybe it would help minimizing player frustration in a kind of meta-level way :)

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I hope they change all of the above cause I'm feeling sad to be honest with this update, I was so hyped now my desire to play the game is getting smaller and smaller... :(

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It pains me to see how the update turned out. It feels like too much thought and work was put into the mechanics of the reworked onslaught and not the players themselves.

However, on the bright side (and what I can see), I can hope for a bunch of rebalances and additional tweaks to the game. I love every idea suggested so far in this thread, and I hope that they'll see the light of day soon (I'm getting frustrated losing an hour of attempts just because I didn't play my cards right).

I'd love to see a slight nerf to some of the buffs monsters get because some of them (phasing, wall leech, controlled burn being an example) are a little too overpowered.

Here's a suggestion to what they could be changed into.

Phasing -> Instead of allowing the mob-wall to walk directly through your barricades, how about we make their damage phase through the defences? Not the entire damage of course, but let's say 25-50% of the damage done to the barricades (or whatever the mobs will hit)?

Wall leech -> As the name suggests whatever gets hit will heal, doesn't it work the same as the vampiric already? I might be entirely wrong and the vampiric buff might be the cause of a second-chance bosses happening on a lane. My suggestion is to either cap the heal at around 10% of the mob's health or change it completely. Make it an aoe that deals continuous damage, but reduces the direct damage from a boss by x%.

Controlled burn -> This could use a completely different approach. In it's current form combined with a specific type of lanes makes it nigh impossible to get through. How about making it so every mob is immune to a status but still takes the full damage? It'd make towers such as pdts useless, but that's a start I guess?

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rather a 2 to 4 word description on schedules with pics . like goblin bombers, goblin javin throwers, yeti freeze and bomb , if schedual was bigger like 1.5- 2x as big

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Really well worded post.  Feels like DD2 is now a mobile game competing against click heroes or tap busters but instead we have clicker defenders. -.-

Two major updates and they nail it for 2% of the community and leave everyone else shaking their heads.

#MakeDD2GreatAgain

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@lukxs quote:

Is there in general a way to differ good suggestions (many players like it, trendy like it and its possible to do it) from not so good/ bad suggestions?

I think dd2 have a really nice community with lots of eloquent people who also have lots of experience in playing games. If there would be a way to identify the most wanted changes respectively solutions it could be really helpful to change things in a player-friendly way, which also should help to increase the playerbase of dd2, which also should help trendy in diffrent ways.

A ingame reward-system (unique skins, items, pets) for players who have made suggestions, which finally make their way into the game, could be also a good motivation. 


All it would take is an ingame survey given by gran master to explain and ask about trendy's ideas which would gain more feedback than just the forum. And a reward of flakes, gold, gems or defender medals would motivate people.

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We already have a gear scaling system introduced with mastery. Why just not use it here? 

Something like "After reset your gear lose upgrade levels and downgrades to campaign stats. Progress through the game to return it's former power." sounds fair enough for everyone involved. 

Maybe even add a 1 bonus upgrade level for all your gear for each ancient reset you did.

Not sure what to do about ascension though.

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@enigma007 quote:

We already have a gear scaling system introduced with mastery. Why just not use it here? 

Something like "After reset your gear lose upgrade levels and downgrades to campaign stats. Progress through the game to return it's former power." sounds fair enough for everyone involved. 

Yes, i wanted to write this but you took me ahead.

It would make the game more about playing and having fun if the gear automaticly upgrade it's stats every time you win a floor in Onslaught... similar to Mastery. For example you won Floor 31 and your Medalion was 12k Def Power in Floor 30 ... now that you won 31 Medalion goes to 12.5 Deff Power automaticly ... just like Mastery. This would save so much time from players comaring sell values.

Eventualy reaching your initial Stats from before reset at Floor 55 or 60 if you want.

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Yep, me also thought about this. Through this it would not be necassary to refarm/ reupgrade shards and good rolled items. Everybody knows how much runs it takes to find just one 21k+ relic in c7, and there surely are a lot accounts out there which needs those relics for 15+ heroes, cause in longer terms i think most players dont want to switch relics between their heroes all the time....

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The main problem for me is the "tiny" text for modifiers. I can barely seem them. Also, after finishing level 1 out of 3 on a stage with another player I hit "continue" and for some reason I was sent back to the start menu with nothing popping up on the screen saying what went wrong.....


* Going back to 1 out of 3 from 2 or 3/3 is so ****. So players get punished because of a bug or glitch and they are screwed? I was playing with a friend and a roller became invisible and we lost the level...... Also had that ruin map with the bridge on the left side where on the right side when I drop stars as the dryad they phase through the ground.


* The game gets more glitchy everyday..... I don't think I barely never had problems in DD1.

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Also even if it's only 3 maps it can take alot of time setting it up and such. As a more causal player it can easily take up too 2 hours that I many times don't have in a single sitting. And if you fail map 3 then goodbye that day with no progress at all.

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@emilian quote:


@enigma007 quote:

We already have a gear scaling system introduced with mastery. Why just not use it here? 

Something like "After reset your gear lose upgrade levels and downgrades to campaign stats. Progress through the game to return it's former power." sounds fair enough for everyone involved. 

Yes, i wanted to write this but you took me ahead.

It would make the game more about playing and having fun if the gear automaticly upgrade it's stats every time you win a floor in Onslaught... similar to Mastery. For example you won Floor 31 and your Medalion was 12k Def Power in Floor 30 ... now that you won 31 Medalion goes to 12.5 Deff Power automaticly ... just like Mastery. This would save so much time from players comaring sell values.

Eventualy reaching your initial Stats from before reset at Floor 55 or 60 if you want.

Now with this post, I finally understand what enigma's talking about. It's pretty cool. Very cool. But it's best be used only after resets as this is a loot based game though. Still, really hope this will be another factor to be considered by Trendy!

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@emilian quote:


@enigma007 quote:

We already have a gear scaling system introduced with mastery. Why just not use it here? 

Something like "After reset your gear lose upgrade levels and downgrades to campaign stats. Progress through the game to return it's former power." sounds fair enough for everyone involved. 

Yes, i wanted to write this but you took me ahead.

It would make the game more about playing and having fun if the gear automaticly upgrade it's stats every time you win a floor in Onslaught... similar to Mastery. For example you won Floor 31 and your Medalion was 12k Def Power in Floor 30 ... now that you won 31 Medalion goes to 12.5 Deff Power automaticly ... just like Mastery. This would save so much time from players comaring sell values.

Eventualy reaching your initial Stats from before reset at Floor 55 or 60 if you want.

I can see how that would work with the onslaught structure.  However how do you factor in grinding chaos that is at the equal level? Which if you use the same equivalency of chaos = floor x then everyone will just reset and grind straight to chaos 7 then slide over and start the onslaught. Basically you just made the floors below chaos 7 irrelevant and not used. I mean it might already be that way so hey.


It would be nice to never lose your awesome gear.


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@mindlessdefender quote:

They been getting feedback on Day 1 of people not liking random maps, even with many solutions suggested no sign of any change.  Really comes down to priorities though.  We may be heard but if its last on their priority list we will not see any change for a year or 2.

Amuses me how some people expect these things to happen overnight, theres a reason you wait a few months for an update to be released , because it takes time, and it's like Day 2 of the new update, have faith man.

The fact that Lawlta replied is a big giveaway i'd say :P

Trendy has never let us down and they won't start now.

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@Sanguine quote:


@mindlessdefender quote:

They been getting feedback on Day 1 of people not liking random maps, even with many solutions suggested no sign of any change.  Really comes down to priorities though.  We may be heard but if its last on their priority list we will not see any change for a year or 2.

Amuses me how some people expect these things to happen overnight, theres a reason you wait a few months for an update to be released , because it takes time, and it's like Day 2 of the new update, have faith man.

The fact that Lawlta replied is a big giveaway i'd say :P

Trendy has never let us down and they won't start now.

It sounds like you should work for Trendy.


Trendy definitely let down the players of DD1--they promised a new map from a contest they held along with a final patch in 2013, did not deliver until 2015 after pressure from a very lengthy thread on the forums over those 2 years.

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