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Design Check-In w/ Mark

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2 hours ago, Windex said:

You also said you liked characters able to be both a builder and a dps in DD2, but I looks like mods would prevent that since you'd wanna stack builder mods on a character and dps mods on another.

Not exactly. While I assume DD1's system was all the gear tied to the entire hero (which is how it is during DD2's Nightmare days), DD2 had a hybrid system where armor and weapons gives a hero it's dps stuffs (hero stats and Mods), each Tower now have a gear slot that you can put a relic in which has defense power/health stats and defense mods.

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2 minutes ago, Paloverde zfogshooterz said:

Not exactly. While I assume DD1's system was all the gear tied to the entire hero (which is how it is during DD2's Nightmare days), DD2 had a hybrid system where armor and weapons gives a hero it's dps stuffs (hero stats and Mods), each Tower now have a gear slot that you can put a relic in which has defense power/health stats and defense mods.

I really hope this doesn't happen to DD:A and we get a system more similar to DD1. =/

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, Windex said:

I really hope this doesn't happen to DD:A and we get a system more similar to DD1. =/

I'll say that it would have to depend on the battle gameplay would be.

I'm not sure about DD1 but the battle pace in DD2  does have scenarios in which changing heroes for different abilities is needed while also having the possibility of rebuilding just in case a def goes down. I'm not sure whether someone has actually done gameplay without changing heroes, but I do have to occasionally.

Still I would have to say too that I would love more loot diversity which ever route Chromatic decides to take. Gotta need those reasons to use those costumes there!

Edited by Paloverde zfogshooterz

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13 hours ago, MadArkael said:

It is my opinion, that if you try to bring too much of the dd2 loot system over, you're going to lose much of the excitement. Playing a map, and magically increasing the item level of what can drop, and doing that over and over until I can get the max tier, is not a loot system at all. That might as well be an idle progression game (like cookie clicker where you get to see neat numbers go higher, yay...)

Having special cosmetic pieces to try to aquire, or a piece of gear that has a special name that might have a special ability that could help you reach past where you are currently is a nice idea, as long as the people that put in the time can farm late game items that can roll better stats, If you leave the builds up to unique items, you will have no variety (diablo 3)

Agreed, although I do think that DD2's passive system in some form could add to the DDA experience.  Elandrian did say that they liked how gear in DD2 could be customized in many different ways and would dynamically affect your tower/build.  I do like the simplicity of DD1's stats, but also feel like there needs to be something more to expand upon the system so you don't just see more stats = better build.  There needs to be variety.  I want to have a reason to have 4 monks specialized in different areas.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Windex said:

Let's say you remove certain stats and add them as mods instead. To me it looks like everyone would just get and use all the same ones. Everyone would want 1 mod to run faster, 1 mod to cast faster and if auras return, stack aura mods on their aura characters. Now they would still have to balance the range. Unless you're limited to 1 mod type per character. I don't see the point of having those as mods if everyone ends up using all the same ones.

The way mods work in DD2 is that if you have solid end game gear you have 12 mods for hero-based stats (3 per helmet/chestplate/gloves/boots). For armor, you'd equip mods like hero speed, cast rate, and situational ability buffs. Tower-based mods can't go on armor, and hero-based mods can't go on relics.

For defenses, you have 4 relics, 1 for each defense. Late-game, you'd be able to equip a maximum of 3 mods per defense. However, there would be wayyy more than 3 mods per defense, so you'd get to pick and choose which 3 you want. Speaking theoretically, but these could be a few mods for the electric aura:

  • +50% range
  • +50% attack rate
  • Chance to shock enemies, stunning them
  • Killed enemies emit a shockwave, dealing extra damage to enemies nearby
  • Damage drastically increases the lower it is on health
  • Damage drastically increases if only one is built
  • Damage drastically increases based on the number of unique defenses near its center
  • Attack rate drastically increases the lower it is on health
  • Attack rate drastically increases if only one is built
  • Attack rate drastically increases based on the number of unique defenses near its center
  • Range drastically increases the lower it is on health
  • Range drastically increases if only one is built
  • Range drastically increases based on the number of unique defenses near its center

Early game you pick 1, mid game you pick 2, end game you pick 3 of the above traits.  The relic equipped for electric aura determines what specialization it would be, and your specific build governs its effectiveness. This also lets you have different mods per defense, so you can have extended range on one defense but have more specialized mods on another. Here are some examples of applying these mods to the electric aura:

  • If you want to use different defenses in every lane, have the 'only 1 is built' mods would make your electric aura amazing, even more so than the static range or attack rate mods. It would require careful planning since you could only use one to maximize its effectiveness.
  • If you want to cluster all your defenses in one spot, having the 'increased damage w/ unique defenses near its center' mods would drastically increase its effectiveness. Again, better bonuses for higher specialization.
  • If you want a more risky build, equip the 'low health' mods - don't repair your auras and try to keep them as low health as possible without them going down. Risk/reward build.
  • If you'd prefer more vanilla builds, attack rate or range could never hurt. They wouldn't be as good as the specialized mods, but they would be less situational.
  • Mix and match - use a standard +range boost, +range when only one is built, and +range based on unique defenses near its center. If you meet all 3 criteria, you could end up with a map-sized aura. But, it doesn't get any damage or attack rate boosts so it wouldn't be brokenly overpowered.

All of a sudden you have a choice on how to maximize the effectiveness of this one defense, and the applications are endless. Which mods you pick fully depend on how you want to build, which also means that we wouldn't end up with a stale meta. If we only have DD1 stats, it will simply end up being "get health/rate/range good enough, then dump everything else in damage", and there would be only one application of each defense. I don't know about you, but that's not really something that appeals to me.

2 hours ago, Windex said:

I really hope this doesn't happen to DD:A and we get a system more similar to DD1. =/

It is important to understand that this is an entirely new game, not just attempt #2 at remaking DD1. There are things that DD2 got wrong, but there are also some things that it got right. Likewise with DD1: it got some things right and some things wrong as well. My hope is that DDA takes the best of both worlds, learning from all 3 existing DD titles to bring about the best game possible.

Edited by gigazelle
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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, gigazelle said:
  • +50% range
  • +50% attack rate
  • Chance to shock enemies, stunning them
  • Killed enemies emit a shockwave, dealing extra damage to enemies nearby
  • Damage drastically increases the lower it is on health
  • Damage drastically increases if only one is built
  • Damage drastically increases based on the number of unique defenses near its center
  • Attack rate drastically increases the lower it is on health
  • Attack rate drastically increases if only one is built
  • Attack rate drastically increases based on the number of unique defenses near its center
  • Range drastically increases the lower it is on health
  • Range drastically increases if only one is built
  • Range drastically increases based on the number of unique defenses near its center

I'm totally not against the idea of mods if they're implemented right. I like your example but I have one complain about it, it should say the % (at least at the end of the effect's description) "Attack rate drastically increases if only one is built" doesn't tell me much unless I equip it and pay close attention to the effect. Also do mods in DD2 drop with pre-setted stats depending on their tier and is there no randomization at all? But I don't even mind that, as long as you keep the extremely rare item qualities and the chase for better stats.
 

Quote

If we only have DD1 stats, it will simply end up being "get health/rate/range good enough, then dump everything else in damage", and there would be only one application of each defense.

Mods would definitely add more strategic depth the first time you beat something. Although it looks to me like you would pretty much use the same cookie cutter mod setup for all maps. Sure a few ones could require you to swap a couple mods but you'd still be using the same setup all the time on that map to farm. Unless they add randomness or stuff that require adaptation on the fly and I'm not sure I wanna be swapping mods all the time when farming a map at endgame. I'm not saying that's a bad thing about mods, I just mean that there should also be things out of our actual control when playing, that add replay-ability.

I'm totally onboard with mods and how they would add more strategic and customization depths. As long as it doesn't banalize getting actual armors, weapons and relics. Also I'm afraid that balancing would become nearly impossible if the players come up with OP mods combinations. It also seems like you would also end up trying to get the same stats in the end.

I'm almost certain I will have fun playing DD:A, my only concerns are whether it will lag at endgame on console and if the game will have an itemization that will always let me strive for a better item.

Edited by Windex

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21 hours ago, gigazelle said:

The idea of Twitch integration is amazing. Players being able to throw curveballs at the streamer would be incredibly entertaining to watch. Most of these streamers would likely be late-game, so we'd want to make sure that no matter when they're streaming that it would be entertaining to watch. Moonbase AFK farming? Lame. Playing a chaos 1 incursion to get the weekly challenge? Lame. I hope that no matter what stream I'm in, I'd be able to make an impact on the streamer's play experience. Blacklisting a few towers or heroes? That would be very interesting to watch to see how they overcome it, and I assume the streamer would also find it an enjoyable challenge, otherwise they wouldn't be streaming. But that only works if the streamer is encouraged to play an engaging map.

NO, no no no no no. I read the rest of your post laughing at some of the things you said about DD2 thinking to myself that if a few of those changes were made I would quit playing. I wouldn't have quoted those though. Most players think they understand how DD2 should be changed and are often wrong or don't have enough time or many other reasons. When you got down to streamers you missed a key factor that makes all of it very very wrong.

Streamers are above all else Entertainers. They are not all nolife players, super skilled, or top tier gear bada$$ players. Some may actually fill those previous categories but most will not like the idea that any troll with a keyboard can come in a ruin their lives when they are finally understanding how to build or play and are finally winning. Twitch integration should have zero, absolutely zero, negative impacts between streamer and viewers. Every time a game that has negative interaction between streamer and their viewers always ends badly. You want to stay very far away from making the streamer and their viewers enemies of each other.

This feature also needs to be carefully thought out and definitely disabled by default because you dont want to lose potential publicity from a streamer because they didnt go through the options on their first play and figure out how integration works. It also needs to be easily customizable by the streamer themselves so that if they did want to have something disabled but not others they could. I hope to be a heavy part of this feature when they start working on this because if they do it wrong then I wont even stream DDA or I will have to disable my own chat to play and have fun, and I know thats something they dont want happening.

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18 hours ago, gigazelle said:

Which mods you pick fully depend on how you want to build, which also means that we wouldn't end up with a stale meta.

Except, realistically, we would. There's always going to be something that's easier or just outright better and that's what pretty much everyone will use. Take a look at any game that allows you lots of ways to do things, such as DD2 or Path of Exile, (or even DD1) and you'll see that. And that's not even counting the added headache of constantly switching/organizing gear pieces for every defense for different maps if you want to do some kind of off-meta build because wacky builds most likely wont be a one size fits all thing. 

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2 minutes ago, Cuddles said:

Except, realistically, we would. There's always going to be something that's easier or just outright better and that's what pretty much everyone will use. Take a look at any game that allows you lots of ways to do things, such as DD2 or Path of Exile, (or even DD1) and you'll see that. And that's not even counting the added headache of constantly switching/organizing gear pieces for every defense for different maps if you want to do some kind of off-meta build because wacky builds most likely wont be a one size fits all thing. 

Exactly, such a system adds a false sense of complexity. There will always be a best-in-slot option and if this option is map specific, it will just be annoying without tools for automaticallly switching between gear setups. Another reason why I prefer DD1 simple stat based system. It is easy to read and to calculate the strength and effectiveness of a character. You can simply select your heroes and jump right into battle without any inventory tetris / organization before. Loot is easy to check - you do not have to read some lengthy description texts but you just compare numbers, something that can be done in a fraction of a second.

I can see how such a system made sense for DD2, where you basically had fixed main stats given a particular item power level. But frankly I do not want to see anything that turns a fire-tower into an ice-tower, which then freezes enemies. Such systems are very difficult to handle and extremely prone to quickly break the balance of the game. And if you have tower damage, tower attack rate and tower range you already have 3 dimensions in which the combat-effectiveness of a defense is scaling. New and different defenses can be added with new heroes. Sometimes less is more - especially when it comes to readability without disturbing the game-flow.

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20 hours ago, Cuddles said:

Except, realistically, we would. There's always going to be something that's easier or just outright better and that's what pretty much everyone will use. Take a look at any game that allows you lots of ways to do things, such as DD2 or Path of Exile, (or even DD1) and you'll see that. And that's not even counting the added headache of constantly switching/organizing gear pieces for every defense for different maps if you want to do some kind of off-meta build because wacky builds most likely wont be a one size fits all thing. 

100% with this, every game that offers "Choices" like that that just go out the window when meta and optimisation come into it. It ends up just being a "fluff" system you need to manage without putting much thought into it.

I don't know the solution to stop the "If we only have DD1 stats, it will simply end up being "get health/rate/range good enough, then dump everything else in damage", and there would be only one application of each defense."

I wonder what the outcome would be if you make towers scale differently than what it doesn't unnecessary follow those rules. Having the best gear doesn't mean they have the best tower. One could specialise the gear to get optimum stats for a particular tower. 

 

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I think clear metas indicate a lack of proper balancing. When all things are subjectively equal, the only difference is personal choice. 

You see this most IMO in fighting games. When one character far outweighs the rest - ever single match has at least one player playing as them. Same with builds in DD2 - there is a very clear reason why WM is in every build and not TDs, and it is not personal choice. There are about a half dozen defs in DD2 that clearly got the short end of the development and testing stick. 

However, proper balancing becomes harder and harder as you add elements of complexity - such as more enemies, more heroes, and wild cards like mutators and hard counters. I like the complexity and having choices. Right now the saddest thing about DDA is that only 4 heroes are thus far confirmed. That is only 16 building options, which is not a lot. Or at least it does not feel like a lot after all that DD2 gave us to play with. 

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Posted (edited)
53 minutes ago, Jaws_420 said:

I think clear metas indicate a lack of proper balancing. When all things are subjectively equal, the only difference is personal choice.

We're discussing a similar subject here.

That's kinda a problem. You don't wanna have all towers do more or less the same damage and work in very similar ways. Even if you had all towers do the same damage, you would use some over others just so you can kill faster. Like placing traps or auras by the spawns, etc.

Each map, should make you want (not need) to use different towers. There should be no hard-counters that will beat your defenses unless you change stuff before it's too late. You should at least know, at the start of the map, whether you will be able to build a certain way or not. It should never prevent you from ever building a certain way, it should only require you to adapt accordingly beforehand.

Edited by Windex

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People have posted a lot of good ideas here, and I wanted to throw in my two cents...

1. I'm a fan of special loot that you have capped as far as equipping it goes. The way that World of Warcraft did legendaries in Legion comes to mind, where you could equip two pieces of gear that dramatically changed the mechanics of your character for the better in a unique way, but you could only have 2 equipped at a time. 

2. I'm a fan of random loot that you can tinker and upgrade as you go. Again Legion has some good things to take here. The artifact weapons were fun because of how invested you could get in upgrading them. As you went through the whole expansion you formed what's like an emotional connection with your weapon as it grew with you in leveling and customization. Something similar to DD2's upgrade system with mods and such, but less of a grind to get near max gear (286 rerolls for a 10/10 mod is a bit excessive. To get one character fulled decked out with 10/10 mods you have to grind out 7,722 rerolls which is ~514 hours of playing if you just grind out 8 minute resort maps, so it's not feasible to get 10/10 mods on all your gear for every character). 

3. The mods themselves are great and fun in my opinion. It seems like you could incorporate a Professor Proteus origin story to introduce them for DD:A. 

4. Have low level content available at max difficulty. I would love to go through the actual campaign again in DD2, but scaled up to C7, or even beyond, for difficulty. DD:A would allow you to implement this toggle as a way to go back and get unique cool gear that you originally had at low level to be suped up and you can use again, hitting the nostalgia from within your own game, and making the old content worth doing for fun and rewards.

5. Allow us to manage inventory in game during waves. It gets us back in to the game faster, and allows for more interesting gameplay if you can switch out gear midwave to tackle a unique boss that's spawned suddenly. You also then won't be screwed if you forget to equip a set of gear for whatever reason.

 

I'm hyped for the game, and the fact that we won't have weird investors pushing the design towards milking the players for cash at every opportunity is going to be wonderful. If any of the stuff I listed above make it into the game I'd be thrilled, but I already backed on kickstarter so I'm getting it either way.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, BrickStudios said:

1. I'm a fan of special loot that you have capped as far as equipping it goes. The way that World of Warcraft did legendaries in Legion comes to mind, where you could equip two pieces of gear that dramatically changed the mechanics of your character for the better in a unique way, but you could only have 2 equipped at a time. 

Ooh, I'm already liking that. It seems to encourage having more of the same class with each being quite unique!

Edited by Paloverde zfogshooterz
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