According to this definition, all you players who don't try to win are stat padding

Discussion in 'PlanetSide 2 Gameplay Discussion' started by NotsiMadz, Feb 25, 2021.

  1. Demigan

    No I wasn't. It's not a single expression.

    Actually it fits. My points were:

    1. Stat padding is about changing player statistics, not all player statistics are about stat padding.
    2. The definition given of stat padding is almost hilariously bad, as it ignores the thousands of edge-cases that could be described as "good" gameplay because the player is benefiting their team but could be doing something better to benefit their team.
    3. That the goal of going for the capture-the-continent objective is badly designed. The true goal of the game is to provide a solid MMOFPS experience, the capture-the-continent objective was tacked on without consideration of what it would do. The best way to "win" is to avoid the MMOFPS experience by shutting down fights with zergs and screwy gameplay as well as ghost capping and other methods of avoiding combat that extends the capture of a base.
    The problem you describe has to do with the objectives, not the players or the mechanics that send them somewhere. Capturing the continent should encourage even, fair fights. It shouldn't be won by dumping an overpop on a small base (except in edge-cases).
  2. pnkdth

    My solution would be revamp alerts to a Tug-of-War.
    1. Alert starts, each lane has one base.
    2. Each lane is won or lost if you can push two bases into enemy territory and hold it, or lost if you go two into your own.
    3. Winner is who has the most points or won all lanes.
    4. You can't push past the current "tug" which means you also must defend.
    It would gather people to fight at designated hotspots and it wouldn't matter is the slightest if you play to win or are just looking for a good fight since both demographics would have their goals aligned, i.e. people would naturally look for the same fight which leads to bigger and better fights.

    Moreoever, it would actively punish any faction who try to zerg down a single lane or avoid fights.
    It is a very simple system, and can be easily modified around creating different kind of alerts depending on territory control, and under certain circumstances you could even trigger special events which center wholly around special bases akin to the Large Facility Alerts of the good old days which ignore all other bases. Naturally the ideas put forth is in a rough state and I don't really want to get too technical or detailed.

    The most important aspect though is we wouldn't be splitting the player base or forcing people out of their fun (be it winning or finding good fights).
  3. ZDarkShadowsZ

    I don't think there is any right or wrong answer to your questions. The fact the game has an open-ended objective is solely for guidance. It's not the end-all be-all of the game. While we capture bases and continents, the cycle is unending. This is to help guide players and provide a direction. However, it is a vast open-world MMORPG. People are quite creative in such an environment and can either choose to follow the guided path the developers set out, or stray from it and draw up their own objectives to achieve.

    It could be argued that the directive system encourages stat padding. A lot of the rewards are based on achieving a certain statistic. This in turn encourages people to stat pad in order to reach a specific goal. These being reward weapons, banners, titles, and so on.

    However, with all of that said, developers hope that players will use common sense. To them there is a difference between having to kill the same players over and over to reach a guided goal, such as capturing bases to win a continent alert, than somebody sitting in the corner padding kill scores to reach an a player-made objective such as working towards a directive reward.

    As a result, there are two types of statpadding; intended, and unintended.

    Intended being the former example, the unintended being the latter.
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  4. iller

    I would say they're not even the least bit "Creative" ... atleast not on my my server or on emerald for that matter (the 2 most populated) because they are always, always, always taking the path of least resistance.

    Which like 90% of the time, is the TR and NC focusing eachother for atleast the first 50 minutes of every alert and not because either one is the real threat, but because they both get more evenly distributed Kills and basically a "fairer matchup" b/c neither one of them is as ridiculously stacked as the way more organized vanu outfits tend to be.

    If they were creative, they would constantly be finding new ways to trick the other faction into engage the Barnies instead of avoiding them. ...and just because the game is intended as a Sandbox, doesn't mean there aren't clear indications of how the Designer intend people to Perceive the incentives directly in front of their faces.'s just that the Designers have been utter dog **** at actually balancing those incentives because they refuse to take any feedback from us here on this Forum
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  5. Demigan

    I have trouble visualising it, but it sounds like players would be encouraged to capture a lane ASAP so they can lock it down and focus on other lanes. Wouldn't that mean that zerging (and having the most population in general) is the winning strategy?

    I would prefer something that scales with the population and population differences. You bring twice as many troops? That's allright but the outnumbered troops will receive mechanical advantages (not statistical like increased health) which change how they try to defend and push enemies off and change how the attackers have to assault a base.
  6. pnkdth

    Nothing is permanent (and you can go past/lose more than two bases forwards/backwards) so leaving a lane to zerg another means you'd give up a lane. It also means that you cannot simply spawn camp your way to victory since your opponent will always have access to the next base over.

    The idea is to organically distribute players with clear battle lines to create better fights and punish zerg/pop dumps. I also think this lends itself well to small and large outfits/groups of players since you can focus on what you can do without having to worry about the entire continent.

    When it comes to overall population/balance I'm favouring Liewec's approach of simply throwing the idea of equal outcomes and balanced population out the window and just let the players loose. Instead focusing on objectives that's right infront of the players, e.g. you get rewarded based on the lane you fought in. Embracing the sandbox and MMO aspect of it as opposed to "matched play" where we measure alert wins and such (there doesn't seem to be a particularly huge interest in who wins what anyways).

    So let's just bunch people together and see where it takes us! Let the players who want bask in an achievement push lanes and those who love a fight duke it out together.
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  7. Demigan

    If we imagine a single "lane" being current lattice-links, what is the difference? Currently zerging will get you the rewards the fastest with the most chance of success. At best you get a scenario where the zerglings have won all lanes and will then join in one of the large-scale battles right?

    What reasons do current 24/7 fighters have for following a specific lane instead of trying to reach their favorite permanent battlesites?

    Just trying to find that nugget of difference that you seem to see.

    I do think that removing most of the restrictions is a good thing, but letting players 100% completely loose isn't a good idea. The first thing developers have to protect the player from is themselves. Like imagine if we removed spawnshields and allowed rampant spawncamping. It's not really fun for either side unless you are only interested in KD farming and it's basically a highway to letting the game implode in on itself.

    The current restrictions basically punish players for joining a team, even though they aren't even the "cause" of the overpopulation. We should be looking at the other end: Players should be rewarded, be able to have fun and feel effective for their team even when they are overpopped. There should never be a point where a player says "I can't do anything because of my enemies numbers".
  8. pnkdth

    Crap, I wrote can instead of "can't."

    Each lane would be locked upon alert trigger, zerging would not make a difference since you'd just be stuck in your tracks while the others take over your other lanes. Basically, you'd have a number of lanes which are locked in place (2 bases deep in both directions). It would not be a tug-of-war across the map since that is just the lattice system. It wouldn't matter what my individual goals are since even if I want to farm or win I'd still be fighting in the same fight. Since we're all fighting on the same battle lines the opponent will too.

    I wasn't suggesting pure mayhem but rather dump the queue and global population control (but still keep mechanics to limit redeployside). That said, I am against absolute fairness since that'll stunt any incentive to actually try at anything. It is a PvP game, after all. What's the point in working together if I get rewarded for not putting in any effort? If the behaviours of both result in epic battles, win-win, and we won't have to explore a bunch of mechanics which can and will be abused. For example, what happens when the so-called elite outfits start dunking hard on casuals who are "just enjoying a good fight" through X and Y mechanic designed to help low pop deal with bigger numbers?

    This is the reason why I want to create a natural battle flow and align the goals of those who only play for good fight/farming and players who want to win. Since everyone would be fighting with a unified front(s), we're severely reducing the risk of imbalanced fights and maximising the chance for large scale battles. As a bonus, it'll be much harder, and even impractical, to zerg your way to victory.
  9. ZDarkShadowsZ

    I think you've taken what I mean by 'creative' a little bit too closely.

    What you've described happens on more than one server. Even on Cobalt, TR and NC tend to fight one another more than VS. However, I am not referring to that. I am referring to the fact that not everybody spends their time aiming for the objective to win the continent. People generate their own way of having fun. Not everybody spends their time working towards a capture point. Not everybody cares about an alert. Yes, most people spend their time killing/farming/statpadding/whatever the hell people want to call it, but not everybody fights for the objective of winning a continent. This is what I am saying.
  10. Demigan

    I really think you need to describe your "lane". Because currently all I can think off is that the lanes are the lattice-lines but you only need to capture 2 bases farther to get hold of the lane. That would mean it is basically the lattice system but you "win" one area with 2 bases instead of having control of the entire map.
    Since the lattice system already heavily rewards zerging to speed up capture compared to spreading your forces evenly and the capture speed on other lattice lines isn't fast enough to counter the zerg, I don't see how the lane system could automatically balance populations and punish zerging?

    Perhaps an example is more clear:
    You have lattice line A, B and C.
    On lattice line A the Zerg is capturing the bases. Let's simplify it and say this takes 10 minutes to capture.
    On lattice line B and C the factions that spread their forces more evenly have a population advantage, but not as large as the zerglings. Their capture rate is 30 minutes each.

    In 20 minutes the zerglings have captured lattice line A. They can then stop the capture at lattice line B before it completes and then capture the two bases behind it in lets say 30 minutes. This means that on lattice A 1 base has been recaptured and on lattice C 1 2/3rd of a base.
    No matter how you twist it, for each 2 bases the opposing factions capture the zerglings will capture 2 or 3 themselves.

    So how is your lanes system different that the zerglings cannot capture bases faster than they lose, like they currently do?
  11. NotsiMadz

    I know what you mean, players can be very creative in how they have fun in a sandbox.

    Construction bases is probably the best example.
  12. JustGotSuspended

    Cool, move on.

    Point of the game is to have fun. Play the way you want as long as it gives you fun, quit having expectations for others. It's a sandbox mmp fps for that reason.
  13. pnkdth

    I suppose if neither of the two factions even try to engage the 3rd, the 3rd will just win. There needs to be a winner and the main reason for the tug-of-war style is to avoid making the conflict seem huge and remove the need/incentive to aggressively roll over the map as a zergball, instead having to focus on defence and offence both + managing population across the map.

    That said, I wouldn't call a force which are moving all over the map to different fights as a zerg. That sounds more like a group of people playing Planetside.

    The purpose of the lanes will also ensure a harsher opposition (which is deterrent number one for zergs forming) and you cannot grind your opponent down through snaking your way through enemy territory with minimal resistance (AKA a zerg's favourite past time). Without a continual diet of fresh bases the zerg will get bored and dissipate. Most will probably seek out what is often referred to as "a good fight" which in turn leads to bigger and better fights.

    Needs tweaking and adjustments, yes, but given there is about a 0% chance of this being considered I'm not really keen in going deeper.
  14. NotsiMadz

    No, and for 3 reasons.

    First, the way it is now was never intended, and I played this game for many years without this issue. It is an issue. An issue that has been getting worse every year.

    Second, the sandbox argument only goes so far. If you want to spend 4 hours a day with your outfit organising races around each continent, driving Harrassers, you can, no one will stop you, and if you want to take that same outfit to the edge of the map where no one ever goes, and build a construction base while role playing, same thing.

    But that is not intended and if everyone did that all the time, we would have a serious problem, this game isn't a Harrasser racing game and it isn"t a role playing game either. Samle thing applies to those just "chasing kills" as Higby calls them, if everyone does that all the time, and it's almost the case, then we have a problem.

    And 3, there are 2 raesons why this matters.

    a) I repeat this and will repeat this on every thread I make on the subject ;

    Winning an alert is a team effort, it's a faction wide effort, when too many players ignore it, they make it impossible for those trying to win to enjoy themselves.

    Doing whatever you want is fine as long as it does not harm the gameplay of other players and if those trying to achieve victory for their faction certainly do so without preventing those who wish to ignore the alert from having fun, this doesn't work both ways : when too many players ignore the alert, those trying to win the alert simply can not play.

    You can't win a football game when 9 members of your team are practicing their juggling skills instead of trying to score goals. You can't, you literally can't, you absolutely can't, and if that is why you play, then you can't play, cause ther only other alternative is give in and ignore the alert yourself, or log off.

    b) Grinding your certs, your XP, your directive kills to aurax, "just having fun" in a fight gets boring after a while. If you don't have much free time, sure thing, go pew pew in a biolab, whatever, but you can't play many hours a day every day for months and for years without having something more meaningful.

    Look around, press tab once in a while, check out this month's leaderboard and glance at the BR levels, ask yourself where are the vets? The vets (there are exceptions) don't stay, they get bored, fighting for no reason gets old after a while, they only log in on friday night ops for 3 hours a week.

    This is a crucial issue, it means that (ironically) this game suffers from what Wrel calls "player retention", it's an 8 year old game and it's full of new players and has hardly any old ones. And those new players, once they max out the directives, once they are fully certed and reach ASP 100, they will become more and more inactive, and this is why. So it's not something to be ignored.
  15. Demigan

    The problem with this is how you try to execute it. You say you want no harm to the gameplay of others, but the method is by outright removing the gameplay you have a problem with or shaming them into playing your gameplay.

    You should start looking for solutions that arent about ruining the gameplay of others so your gameplay isnt ruined (which assumes that the players who's gameplay you've ruined would actually join your gameplay).
    Its ridiculous that the main game (MMOFPS gameplay) isnt supported by the wet fart that is the continent capture gameplay. Sure some players like the smell, but most players try to avoid it.

    If you want this to improve the first thing that needs to happen isnt to *** over the players who arent joining your gameplay, its to change the continental capture gameplay so it is in line with the actual main purpose of the game.

    To use your analogy, 9 football players are playing with the ball, but to score a goal they are encouraged to pick up the ball and run around in the stands before scoring due to the rules this football game has.
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  16. Demigan

    But this is exactly what is happening right now. At any point in time one faction is likely double-teamed, especially during alerts where the least populated faction gives you the highest chance of grabbing territory. So in your version players would still be encouraged to zerg that group.
    On top of that zerging is the fastest and most efficient method currently available, even (especially) if the other two factions try to engage you to even it out. Zerging gives you the option to cut out most of the work fighting through chokepoints and whatnot as you overwhelm defenders and hold the points.

    I dont think that with only changes to how the lattice or lanes work you will ever be able to stop Zerging to be powerful. The current mechanics just dont support a self-balancing gameplay. You need to actively change the capture mechanics and reward systems to achieve anything.

    A force moving across the map is part of Planetside. A force moving across the map with the express purpose of using numbers to shut down fights and achieve easy wins is a zerg.

    When a large fight is finally broken by the attackers it almost ineviteably turns into a zerg afterwards.
    I do think I see what you are trying to achieve: less routes and bases available at a time means that its harder to outpop your enemy or avoid a confrontation.
    There is a problem there with the bases in question. The way continents are set up most lanes would have only one or two large facilities across the 4 bases that matter to the lane. You could try to solve that by deactivating several small bases so most fights take place at the larger ones. That would also minimize zergforming after a base falls, as usually the zerg is stopped only when it reaches the next big facility down the line that is actually defensible. It would also allow the vehicle game to have a greater role in getting to the next place to fight at. I guess that part would be good.

    Never say never. Half a dozen (non-general) idea's I've put forth are in the game. Heavily mutilated and often working against the thing I was trying to achieve with the idea, but they are.
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  17. pnkdth

    Yeah, that's the overall goal. Then make gradual revamps of bases so it becomes as fair as possible which when finished will also create map with more interesting bases. As alerts are triggered at different points each of these bases will provide us a more varied experience.

    Going further this could lead to specialised events such as "Cut their medical supplies!" which immediately opens up all bio labs and turns the rest of the map into staging areas. It'll be messy but everyone epic battles are guaranteed.

    Idk, I'm just tired of the territory control stuff. I want each event feel like, "hell yeah, let's go!" Easier said than done but I think giving us a clear goal which isn't just "get X% of territory till the clock runs out" would go a long way. To tie it back to the topic, get people out the grind/farm/zerg comfort zone.
  18. Alkasirn

    So on the topic of sandboxes: sandbox MMOs need a really carefully thought out ecosystem. Just cause I like talking about it every chance I get: think about the old Runescape (nah, not that stuff from 2007 that became too focused on combat. I'm talking about the 2001-2006 stuff!) In that game you could do pretty much anything the game offered and be rewarded for it just as much as someone else who chose a completely different thing - but you would also often regularly depend on other players who preferred different styles of play. (Example: Player A just gets to make healing items all day, but there's only meaning in it because Player B fights and consumes them. But Player B is only able to fight the monsters they want because Player A made healing items and traded them, and sometimes there's a Player C who just loves trading and is the reason A and B's play style is working out so well for them.)

    But PS2 doesn't have an ecosystem; the gameplay is just "everyone kills each other until they get bored" because nothing else is rewarded and there's no incentive to interact with teammates. So you get a game that lets you do 5,000 things, but if you try 4,999 of those things you get nothing to show for it.

    Stat padding is only bad because it takes fun out of the game for players around the stat padder (and sometimes even the stat padder themselves), yet stat padding is the only thing the game encourages. Want to aurax medic? You need to get thousands of kills (or just get lucky/use an exploit for a ton of savior or enemy medic kills...) Want to aurax engi? Better get killing. Infil? Hey, you get to kill in lots of different ways. LA/HA/Max? Well, at least some classes are expected to do what they're designed to do. And guess what you have to do for all the different "weapon" directives!

    After so many years, it wouldn't have been hard to do something like: a healing directive where you heal teammates in different contexts (with nano-regen, with applicator, with healing grenade, with triage, etc.) to get a fancy auraxium healing grenade or something; a revive directive where you need special revives (revive someone who doesn't die for the next 15 seconds, revive someone who gets a kill in the next 15 seconds, revive someone on a control point, etc.) to get an auraxed healing applicator, you get the idea. But hey, getting like 120,000 kills is fine too I guess...

    So that would be a step in the right direction for incentives, but what about player interactions? Well, some will already be improved (it'll be harder to notice 5+ medics run over your corpse trying to get an AR kill if you getting revived can help them towards a directive, too.) Honestly I can't think of anything else without completely redoing the balance of basically everything, but the idea behind it is: make it so players can help themselves by helping others.

    Basically, you don't want one person to be able to do everything and be able to solve every problem they encounter by themselves. Already, any infil running around doesn't have the best chances against an enemy tank. Honestly, there should be more interactions like that (where one unit can only damage another unit if they have a specific weapon for it and even then they're not as effective as most other units.) A should have to rely on B sometimes, but only because B has to rely on A some other time, and the game should reward both A and B equally.

    Otherwise you get all these self-sustaining killing machines that do the one thing the game encourages (kill) by themselves and then everyone ends up ignoring 99% of the game, and stuff like the territory control becomes an optional bonus that can be completely ignored with no downsides. (The continent bonuses currently only affect you if you personally would take advantage of them, assuming you're still online, so it's not a big deal. But if they made things easier for players that made things easier for you...)
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  19. NotsiMadz

    I really liked your post, I don't agree with all of it (for example, my focus would be more on the meta, so providing incentives for things like winning an Alert rather than individual progression) but I thought it was constructive.

    With regards to the part I quote above, when I read that, I couldn't help think "all you'd really have to do is roll the game back a good 5 years or so. I mean everyone was happy back then, so to speak, and as far as I can remember."

    I mean of course not everyone was happy and I was already the first to complain about stuff, but compared to today? I guess my point is it seems to me the balance had pretty much already been achieved 5 years ago, so in principle, if they achieved it in the past, they should be able to achieve it again?
  20. Alkasirn

    If I remember right, PS2 started out with a sort of rock-paper-scissors balance to everything. Then as time went on it slowly became more of a "HA or ESF or harasser or dead" balance.

    I know there are people on these forums that don't like RPS balance, but it could be applied to pretty much anything to solve a lot of problems. For example: combined arms? You could easily adjust the game so air has advantage over tanks, which have advantage over infantry, which have advantage over air. I exclusively play infantry these days and I wouldn't mind seeing the game go back to the days when a squad of enemy tanks could stare at a tower and completely prevent all infantry from stepping outside forever --- of course with the expectation that some squad leader somewhere would eventually tell friendly aircraft about the free tank kills they're missing out on. (Assuming all the tanks would be using HE which wouldn't even one-shot an ESF due to the new balancing.) (Then the enemy starts to switch to infantry, but the friendlies start spilling out of the spawn, freshly saved thanks to friendly aircraft, then a whole fight happens where everyone is responding to what the other team is doing... well... one can dream, anyway.)

    And who knows? Maybe that battle at the tower I just made up was happening because being able to resupply aircraft there would be, get this, logistically important!
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