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Astiliano

[Seasonal Play] Massively increase gold & booster drop, wipe every # months

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Hey Guys,

An idea for keeping the game fresh and with active folks, is why not have seasons (like Diablo 3) where certain cards get buffed so those are the center of that seasons deck.

Along with this would be wipes every certain number of months but to offset the grind is an increase in gold and booster packs.

This means you can play, be satisfied and leave then come back later to find a different meta and yet be able to get up to speed quickly because of the increased gold + boosters. We're pretty much doing it now, you're seeing people grind and get all the cards they want knowing that they're going to lose it all. For me as a player who came in late it's going to suck as I haven't completed my decks but I look forward to a fresh start.

This encourages new players and satisfies veteran players as the meta will change and create new strategies. Also it would discourage running multiple accounts since it would be pointless with the drops.

Edited by Astiliano
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People would get fed up with constantly having to re-upgrade their different decks.

Collectors wouldn't want to play since you cant get every card in just a month or two.

Also the PVP meta will change depending on the nerfs/buffs when we go live.

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Keeping the game Fresh and making other strategies viable sounds good. But i dont like the idea of the endless returning wipe and buffing and nerfing Units just to make an artificially new Meta everytime so it fell new.

Instead i would vote for balancing the game. Let the good Cards stay good but make bad/useless Cards more usefull.
Right now some cards are clearly better then others and switching this very usefull cards to an useless card is of course extremly inefficient.
To make the bad cards more usefull would give more varation, without losing the efficient of an deck.

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2 hours ago, Neox said:

People would get fed up with constantly having to re-upgrade their different decks.

Collectors wouldn't want to play since you cant get every card in just a month or two.

Also the PVP meta will change depending on the nerfs/buffs when we go live.

1) Not with increased booster and gold rates, because of the wipes it wouldn't matter how high you make the drops

2) And what will the Collectors do once they've collected and upgraded decks to their liking? There is no endgame for them

3) That's part of the fun, new strategies and play styles

 

1 hour ago, Venomlord said:

Keeping the game Fresh and making other strategies viable sounds good. But i dont like the idea of the endless returning wipe and buffing and nerfing Units just to make an artificially new Meta everytime so it fell new.

Instead i would vote for balancing the game. Let the good Cards stay good but make bad/useless Cards more usefull.
Right now some cards are clearly better then others and switching this very usefull cards to an useless card is of course extremly inefficient.
To make the bad cards more usefull would give more varation, without losing the efficient of an deck.

1) It's actually not bad, you'd be amazed how many people take part of the Diablo 3 Seasonal Play. And it's a full fresh start every time.

2) If you think cards are unbalanced right now, this is what the developers inherited from a full fledged studio. If a game that had a budget and set developers behind it when it was under EA couldn't balance it 100% during their time, how much time do you think it would take for our current developers to balance it out? Buffing/Nerfing a single card changes the meta more than you think.

 

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Balancing is a delicate process which works in iterations. Wiping any progress in terms of balance all 3 months sounds like... madness?

You end up with a balance behemoth that is dominated by players who are the first in finding the most potent and toxic combos.

latest?cb=20171215221144

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@ImaginaryNumb3r

4 hours ago, ImaginaryNumb3r said:

Wiping any progress in terms of balance all 3 months sounds like... madness?

edit: also to clarify for folks who misunderstand my statement as well, I never said anything about wiping "progress" changes. I don't know why that would even be a question.

I don't understand where you're getting this context from but my my reply still stands:

 

7 hours ago, Astiliano said:

2) If you think cards are unbalanced right now, this is what the developers inherited from a full fledged studio. If a game that had a budget and set developers behind it when it was under EA couldn't balance it 100% during their time, how much time do you think it would take for our current developers to balance it out? Buffing/Nerfing a single card changes the meta more than you think.

 

Edited by Astiliano

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14 hours ago, Astiliano said:

1If you think cards are unbalanced right now, this is what the developers inherited from a full fledged studio. If a game that had a budget and set developers behind it when it was under EA couldn't balance it 100% during their time, how much time do you think it would take for our current developers to balance it out?

I think the studio wasn't as full fledged as you think. They barely had the ressources/manpower to concern themselves with balancing issues. And despite that balancing came a long way when you consider what a mess it was in the beginning.

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@SunWu II. Sorry I don't understand, are you saying that the current developers DO have the resources and manpower to concern themselves with balancing issues?

14 minutes ago, SunWu II. said:

I think the studio wasn't as full fledged as you think. They barely had the ressources/manpower to concern themselves with balancing issues.

 

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Hey Astiliano, I think your idea is pretty good but it feels more like a very cool alternative to Tome mode to me. BattleForge was after all a card collecting game, resetting that collection reguarly would defeat the point of that. I think a big part of satisfying gameplay is working on your collection. Although I agree the end game is limited after you complete your entire collection, is simply resetting it all a good alternative?  I suppose the answer will be different for each person but for me working towards a collection and progression is a core part of the game. If we are to work on further end game I think it should go hand in hand with that.  

15 hours ago, Astiliano said:

If you think cards are unbalanced right now, this is what the developers inherited from a full fledged studio. If a game that had a budget and set developers behind it when it was under EA couldn't balance it 100% during their time, how much time do you think it would take for our current developers to balance it out? Buffing/Nerfing a single card changes the meta more than you think. 

Come on now, I don't mean to get political but I think it was quite clear that BattleForge (balancing) hadn't been Phenomic's priority in a long time. Just look at the Amii edition, it was never fully released. More specifically look at Amii Phantom, you can't tell me a dedicated dev team figured it would be balanced to create a swift, cheaper (60 power) version of mauler (effectively disabling every ranged unit efficiently, even more so looking at the 60 power cost) and to top it off give it a ranged attack mode with crippling bite integrated into it. Instead of several Amii (I mean shadow/nature there) units they seemed to have just created 1 big defiance of logic. 

But overal I think only +-20 cards, maybe even less, have to be rebalanced out of +- 540 to provide a proper playing experience for all factions. And most importantly there already is/was a general consensus on these issues amongst the long time PvP players, so the current devs would be sooner tasked with implementing agreed upon changes, rather than coming up with balance from scratch. That seems like a better plan to me than buffing/nerfing in a never ending cycle. 

Edited by MaranV

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9 minutes ago, MaranV said:

More specifically look at Amii Phantom

I had to look this up: http://battleforge.wikia.com/wiki/Category:Amii_(4th)_Edition_Cards

I wasn't aware those cards were called Amii

11 minutes ago, MaranV said:

feels more like a very cool alternative to Tome mode

http://battleforge.wikia.com/wiki/Tome

"Further, Tome Pools expire one month after they are created, at which time it is automatically disbanded, and the cards go into the general collection."

Gotcha, yeah it does sound like that

12 minutes ago, MaranV said:

only +-20 cards, maybe even less, have to be rebalanced

I'm glad to hear that low number, but cmon even 1 positive change could completely change the meta. I'm not saying it's not possible, I'm saying it would take a lot of time and tinkering. The amount of work to make the game run has to be massive, just look how long it took. There's still much work ahead for the current devs and that's just for making the game work, not for making major game changes. 

18 minutes ago, MaranV said:

BattleForge was after all a card collecting game, resetting that collection reguarly would defeat the point of that.

Same could be said for Diablo 3 seasons. What's the point of getting loot if you can't use it for your next seasonal character. All I'm saying is a big game like Diablo 3 crunched the numbers and used that method to both keep and bring in players and it can be easily and quickly implemented here. Just food for thought.

This is after all, just a suggestion.

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O absolutely, 1 good change can make a big difference. But won't coming up with these changes also take up dev time as well? Unless you want to suggest random changes, but I don't think you meant that.

Pretty much all the changes I have in mind involve changing in-game metrics (damage, hp, range etc.) or the manipulation of in-game abilities, so although the changes on the gameplay will be major I think the technical implementation will be rather simple in comparison to how complicated getting the game in an operational state was/is. 

Anyway I'll think about your suggestion some more and look at Diablo 3 more closely. Overal I'm getting the idea these seasons are already too much to handle for a even a full time dev team, if I read the frustrations on the Diablo forum https://us.battle.net/forums/en/d3/topic/20770626885?page=1

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21 hours ago, Astiliano said:

2) If you think cards are unbalanced right now, this is what the developers inherited from a full fledged studio. If a game that had a budget and set developers behind it when it was under EA couldn't balance it 100% during their time, how much time do you think it would take for our current developers to balance it out? Buffing/Nerfing a single card changes the meta more than you think.

This "full fldeged studio" was responsible to make the content for the game (models, textures, animations, audio, maps, scripting etc.). And even then, one studio never fully commits its entire crew to just one game. Even-more, towards the end of the game, this "full fledged studio" boiled down to one guy: "The Black One". TBO was no designer, he was a programmer and had other priorities than balance.

Nonetheless, I think the balancing in Battleforge was noticeably improved over time. Virtually every Lost Soul card was broken on release (Lost Shade, Grigori Bombs, Lost Vigil + Ice Barrier and even Lost Reavers were nerfed) and a lot of toxic combinations were fixed towards the end. Again, balance is an iterative process that takes time to refine over time.

You are fortunate if you got a single guy dedicated to balance because. Game devs usually change from one project to another and because they are expensive, they are usually not employed on balance for a long time. The problematic aspect is that proper balance takes so much time, as you can only fix one aspect of the game at a time.

Your hypothesis that a non-studio developer cannot fix the balance also doesn't hold because it is not uncommon in the RTS genre to have community created balance patches. Such modders don't require pay and put in their free time to come up with time intense tests and adjustments. And the chance is community members have a deeper understanding of the game's meta because they have been playing it for years.

Balance is not rocket science, it's a craft that takes precision and insight to get right. You are doomed to fail if you don't know exactly what you are doing. Chances are that you are making everything worse if you randomly tweak numbers. And compared to games like Starcraft, Battleforge has really easy mechanics that usually allow for good counterplay in terms of faction design. Effectively, the game only has several core cards that most of the game resolves around, along with some good and situational cards.

I repeat, you are doomed to fail if you tinker around without having a methodological approach. You might wonder why I know? I've been working on balance patches, and my own current mod project is all about balancing atm. I've added content over a long time, but only when you got a stable amount of content you can iterative and improve the balance of the game.

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On 12/28/2018 at 8:41 PM, ImaginaryNumb3r said:

Balancing is a delicate process which works in iterations. Wiping any progress in terms of balance all 3 months sounds like... madness?

You end up with a balance behemoth that is dominated by players who are the first in finding the most potent and toxic combos.

latest?cb=20171215221144

Right now you just play the most potent/toxic combos from the BF era when it was taken down... I don't see much of a difference.

But wipes are bad because grinding takes so long in this game and is so vital. In Diablo you can play without having to grind for hundreds of hours

To make this work with BF you'd need to increase rewards to make players able to reach their full deck within 4 weeks or so maximum. Better booster collection would help though (uncommon single card, common card boosters, etc.)

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On 12/29/2018 at 9:50 AM, ImaginaryNumb3r said:

I think the balancing in Battleforge was noticeably improved over time

I agree

On 12/29/2018 at 9:50 AM, ImaginaryNumb3r said:

Again, balance is an iterative process that takes time to refine over time.

I agree

On 12/29/2018 at 9:50 AM, ImaginaryNumb3r said:

The problematic aspect is that proper balance takes so much time, as you can only fix one aspect of the game at a time.

I agree

On 12/29/2018 at 9:50 AM, ImaginaryNumb3r said:

Your hypothesis that a non-studio developer cannot fix the balance

I never said this.

On 12/28/2018 at 11:35 AM, Astiliano said:

EA couldn't balance it 100% during their time, how much time do you think it would take for our current developers to balance it out?

My question still remains. I never said it can't be done.

Edit: Again, I have no idea where everyone is getting the idea that I'm anti-balancing or saying "it can't be done".

All I'm saying is in my point of view it is much easier to implement Higher Drops + Wipes than it is to fully balance out the game. I am not saying it's impossible, but there is a great difference in the time needed to make it happen.

Edited by Astiliano

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Posted (edited)

If you want to know the consequences of you suggestion, look at WC3. They did multiple balance changes, but boosted 2 units so much (KotG, Ballista), that they destroyed the whole meta that was in place for like 10 years. It didn't add fun variety, but killed many strategies instead (to stay with battleforge, imagine a t1 unit gets so good, that it would make no sense to even go for t2 or t3 anymore). BUT, you could achieve something similiar by nerfing, which is less fragile (the worst thing that could happen, is that the card vanishes. You could destroy 1 race/element, but at least the other races/units are untouched).

Same with Hearthstone, where they use this abusive balancing to promote new seasons of cards to generate money. The majority won't enjoy it, it's the number one reason people quit. If you want to grind, go to the fitness studio.

Edited by OuhYesPlease
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On 12/29/2018 at 3:38 AM, MaranV said:

O absolutely, 1 good change can make a big difference. But won't coming up with these changes also take up dev time as well?

Ah I failed to respond to this earlier, no all they would need to do is increase quest rewards and gold drops from chest + pve. Not adding or removing anything but increasing values. As for the wipes, I would be really surprised if it took actual work to do them.

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