Episode 41: Week 1

Discussion in 'Announcements' started by Panderus, Sep 2, 2021.

  1. Panderus Senior Producer

    Hello friends! Looking back on this first week, Episode 41 has brought big changes and a few bumps, too. I want to take a moment to explain a few things and share what we are working on.

    Source Marks In End-Game

    Source Marks are the lifeblood of the leveling game and an important need at the end-game. We do not want end-game players to feel "forced" to play Omnibus for Source Marks - we want you to be able to play Omnibus, and all of our many years of content, for full rewards, IF you want to.

    1. We will return Source Marks to end-game content (the most recent three episodes)
      • at the traditional rate: Solo - 1; Duo - 1; Alert - 3; Raid - 10
      • without Combat Rating Relevancy (get Source Marks regardless of your CR in all three episodes, if eligible)
    The Systems team is now working to make this a reality. We believe the intensity of the frustration many of you expressed with the whole system may be alleviated with this change.

    Outliers In Content

    As you may have noticed, our focus this week has largely been on identifying specific content (or battles or bosses or attacks) that feel out of line compared to the rest of the content around it. These outliers are one by one being ripped open, analyzed, and adjusted where problems are found.

    In a large majority of these cases so far, specific balance adjustments had been hand-crafted to account for whatever particular issue from back in the last decade. These fixes are no longer necessary after many of our updates over the last few years, and now with 41, that have standardized NPCs and attacks and so on. And so, outliers.

    For example, Fortress 3 (Sunstone Matrix) would have been more balanced at 41's launch except its bosses and adds previously had their health and damage cut in half, and the Kryptonians' Short Lightbeam Attack previously had its damage increased by 3x. These were one-off fixes for a systemic problem in 2011 that doesn't exist anymore in 2021, that balanced the content then but under tuned the content now.

    1. Identify and address content outliers based on feedback and data
    The Content team has been and continues to knock out these outliers. Most of the adjustments we are tackling are from your feedback about what feels too difficult or too long. We will also rely on our internal data and survey feedback going forward.

    Source Marks in Omnibus

    Speaking of things changing across decades, content was built to different standards in different eras. And of course, there are different expectations and goals for the latest content and for content from years ago.

    Despite layers of scaling - and ignoring (for the moment) content bugs and balance issues specific to scaling - it's clear that some content is more or less rewarding for your time than others.

    And all that said, Omnibus should still be THE place to go for Source Marks. Leveling players need Source Marks the most, and this is where they play.

    1. We will investigate adjusting content and/or rewards based on expected completion time
    2. We will increase the Source Marks delivered for the Omnibus missions
    The Systems team will turn their attention to this problem once the Content team has made further progress on outliers (below) and once we have more live data

    Stat Scaling & Piercing

    Finally, I want to talk about how stat scaling and what we call stat piercing work, because it is not apparent in-game and especially not apparent right here at the transition. MMO math is complicated.

    In brief, when your stats are scaled down, they are first set to target numbers for that content's particular expected Combat Rating - currently +10 Combat Rating over the content's NPC levels. This factors in your role and is essentially just your gear being scaled back in time.

    Then, piercing. Some of your stats are applied after that initial scaling. A percentage of your stats from Skill Points, Artifacts, Augments, Allies, and League Buffs "pierce" through and are added separately.

    That this is a percentage is important. A percentage means all of these things you work for in growing your character still increase your power in scaled content. 40% of 100 Skill Points is more than 40% of 50 Skill Points, and so on. These percentages may see adjustments as we work through feedback.

    Depending on whether or not you are being scaled up or scaled down, and depending on the content type (solo, raid, etc.), there is an additional buff applied to your character of varying strength. Why? This buff is primarily to adjust survivability for an environment where you will more likely be playing with other players with varying levels of experience.

    All of this happens so that we can hit our goal of inviting you to play Omnibus content, get rewards, and still feel powerful playing the game - to a point that stops before you are one-shot gods not having to really play anything.

    1. Monitor scaling feedback, re-confirm targets and goals, clarify, and do more math as needed
    The Design and Engineering teams will be tackling this in an ongoing effort, with changes (if any) generally after the initiatives with Source Marks and content outliers are in order

    In Closing

    I believe if we can do what's outlined above - remove the "forced" nature of Omnibus, clarify the nature of stat piercing, correct content outliers, balance time vs. reward, and then reassess scaling targets - we will have addressed the core of the negative experiences you have shared with us this week. We'll get on it. Thank you for your continued support.


    To address early feedback for Episode 41, we will:
    1. Return Source Marks to end-game content (the most recent three episodes)
      • at the traditional rate: Solo - 1; Duo - 1; Alert - 3; Raid - 10
      • without Combat Rating Relevancy (get Source Marks regardless of your CR in all three episodes, if eligible)
    2. Identify and address content outliers based on feedback and data
    3. Investigate adjusting content and/or rewards based on expected completion time
    4. Increase the Source Marks delivered for the Omnibus missions
    5. Monitor scaling feedback, re-confirm targets and goals, clarify, and do more math as needed

    Until next time,

    Landon "Panderus" Falls
    Senior Producer
    DC Universe Online
    • Like x 39
  2. Mepps Sr. Community Manager

    Speaking of surveys, we invite you to visit AND return at your leisure to this Omnibus raid survey to help us continue to identify what raids are too hard/easy/short/long or just right.

    Raid Survey: https://bit.ly/3mX59en
    • Like x 5
  3. Jafin 10000 Post Club

    This all looks great, especially seeing Source Marks return to endgame content.
    • Like x 5
  4. Irvynnge Loyal Player

    wow. thank you, so much.
    • Like x 1
  5. myandria Item Storage

    It will be interesting to see how many players stick to only the end game content for Source Marks due to their dislike of the stat clamping of lower level content.
    • Like x 2
  6. Rip Kurrent Well-Known Player

    Thank you for the transparency, devs. It is greatly appreciated. We all knew this was going to be an adjustment. Speaking personally, I feel this should at least help alleviate some of the concerns the player base has.

    I'm going to be brutally honest, I haven't touched end game content since ep 41s launch. I think that will change once source marks get added back. One of the biggest takeaways for me is the satisfaction that comes with have old content being rewarding again. This not only includes getting source marks but also not steam rolling content.

    I also think that the stat piercing percentage should be increased a bit. At the end of the day, the players do want to feel like all of the time and effort that they put in actually matter.They currently do in my opinion. It could be beneficial to let us know what percentages are piercing through at each tier. If there's one thing that I've noticed about this community, they like numbers. Cold, hard facts about how much their sp, arts and augments matter..EXACTLY.

    Some are going to continue to be firmly against clamping in any form and I get that. For me personally, I'm good. I enjoy the challenge. I do think that there is a little wiggle room on our scaling where we could slide a bit closer to the "powerful" side though. All in all, I think you did a great job and I look forward to the future of DC Universe Online.
    • Like x 2
  7. Vnoobis New Player

    Hello, I believe there are a lot of things to talk about but my main concern now is that I started the game in 2014 as a villain, in 2021 I was still a main villain but with STU I can’t play on my villain properly anymore. I’m max sp, got a lot of 200 artefacts, I really play the game and put money on it but I feel like I wasted my money now. Indeed, I play on EU server and as you should know, the population there is quite… low. I used to log my hero, make group, log out, log my villain and get re invited with the hero group but now I can’t do that anymore. (for now that’s only the case for the alert but we never know what’s next..) I was wondering if you could maybe make all the instances cross faction and as we now have House of Legends etc, best would be grouping directly with heros and villains ;)
    • Like x 5
  8. BumblingB I got better.

    Thank you for the transparency.

    The changes to the Source at end game was by far the worst part of the recent update. Glad it's going back.
    • Like x 2
  9. IonHero Committed Player

    Is there a suggested dom for the omnibus stuff?
  10. DanXVII Committed Player

    This addresses all the issues I had with the update, Omnibus was pointless when I can farm 3-4 fos3’s by the time an Omnibus raid queue would even pop. End game players will always go where the best reward for time ratio is so hopefully you get this right otherwise people will just farm the next shortest raid.

    And now anyone who doesn’t want to do Omnibus will have the option to get the same amount of source marks as pre update by just doing current content as before.

    Also don’t forget to buff the rocks in khandaq ;) And try not to over nerf anything because a lot of complaints are full of misinfo, most instances are currently far easier than at launch and can still be rolled over with any semi competent dps and at least 1 support role. A lot of the hysteria is pure hyperbole by people who are exaggerating in a desperate attempt to get back their god mode, or never played the content at launch.
  11. BumblingB I got better.

    In theory, you should hit the suggested dom for your role by the clamp.
  12. Knavion Level 30

    Thanks so much to the devs who are sincerely doing their best for the game and listening to the players. A transparency that we have been asking for years. When there are good intentions, it is positive to show support.
    • Like x 1
  13. Beastmaster Well-Known Player

    Those Rocks in Kahndaq do need a buff in health. It pure misery with the waterkeepers doing % damage to the rock. Even when you got troll that even stuns appropriately.
    • Like x 1
  14. Sword- New Player

    This seems good, but will the source marks from endgame content be infinite like they are in the omnibus? If in the future, the old content is adjusted to the point where it is too trivial and I feel obsolete as a support main, I would prefer to not run old content at all aside from weeklies. I would like to see the old elite raids give more source marks than normal raids, considering the difference in their completion time and difficulty. It would also be nice if custom raids could be queued into and have the same ready up functionality as quickplay, rather than having to navigate through multiple menus, so that if a short raid has less source marks, we can queue into a longer instance for a larger amount more conveniently. So far the stat clamp seems fine, I can also see on the scoreboard that the difference between players who have put a lot of work into their characters and those that are still inexperienced is substantial in terms of damage output.
    • Like x 1
  15. Panderus Senior Producer

    It will be loot locked as it was before and is currently, though that is an interesting idea if we could have some of the rewards like source marks not be on those loot locks.

    Mepps Edit: What Panderus meant to say was, "No."
    • Like x 9
  16. Smashbang Wallop Well-Known Player

    I'll be one of those!
  17. Smashbang Wallop Well-Known Player

    That's all I ever wanted! Ta! :)
  18. Pop a Trinket dey sweatin Dedicated Player

    When that aquaman ally dropping tho' ?
  19. Kryptonian1738 New Player

    Can devs look into the weekly missions? I’m cr 342 and running these alerts/raids with cr skips/new players is a pain. They never ran them so I have to waste mins explaining stuff and some never played their role so if I’m queued in to a alert with a healer who never healed he becomes obsolete and now it’s another person I have to carry. Can weeklys be changed to where solos and duos count instead of do 3 alerts and 2 raids can they become do X amount of solos, duos, alerts OR raids?
    • Like x 1
  20. Too Many Toons Dedicated Player

    Indeed, I was thinking a compromise of half rate source marks would come in.
    • Like x 1