[Suggestion] Change to Prowler Lockdown: Is this crazy, or just what the Prowler needs?

Discussion in 'PlanetSide 2 Gameplay Discussion' started by DashRendar, May 5, 2015.

  1. DashRendar

    While writing a post for a recent thread for making meaningful changes to the game, I had an interesting idea. The idea was to change Lockdown for the Prowler to make it less of a situational effectiveness multiplier, more of a playstyle choice, and more fun. First I'd like to give you some background on the Prowler from my own viewpoint.

    Since launch, I believe that instead of the Prowler gaining additional utility from its special ability, it has been limited by it. The problem with this ability is that it is a. situational, b. a straight effectiveness buff while activated, c. not fun or new compared to the non-locked down Prowler, it's just a buff. The Prowler has had many balance changes, the Prowler's base effectiveness had to be balanced with Lockdown in the back of the mind at all times. Any nerf or buff given to the Prowler affects its Lockdown effectiveness in a linear fashion, so the Prowler has a balance singularity with its special ability. This can be a damaging thing for the platform as a whole. As a result of this, I believe it is the opinion of many that the non-locked down Prowler is a tad UP, while the locked down Prowler is a tad OP. There is never a time where perfect balance is met. I believe that if we changed the mechanics of Lockdown, it can be made more fun, while also being more interesting and not as much of a balance trainwreck.

    My idea for the Lockdown change is to make it so that the Lockdown would get rid of "reloads" completely, while also doubling the refire time. The current Prowler has a "chamber time" of .5s. This isn't noted in any document or stat ingame, but that's the time it takes the Prowler, locked down or not, to fire its second shot after firing its first. With this change, the Prowler could have access to its entire ammo pool without need to reload, only to suffer a chamber time of 1s between shots. Along with this, it would still receive the current benefit of greater velocity than the non-locked down Prowler. Effectively, Prowler Mode Engaged. The concept is that the Prowler is meant to be what it is when locked down. It can still be effective not locked down, more effective than it is now given some small changes, but it would be a "Prowler" when locked down. It also creates a necessary duality between the Prowler and its ability, so that both could more easily be balanced and interesting at the same time.

    I'll post more mathy stuff later. Idea: Is it good or bad? Interesting or not?
    • Up x 2
  2. Tycoh

    Okay suggestion but i doubt that they'll be touching Lockdown ever again. What the prowler really needs is to be less of a god damned cereal box on treads. It's like it's designed to hit every bump on the way from A to B.
  3. ColonelChingles

    Have you run the DPS numbers on this?

    If this change is implemented, the Prowler will fire one 1,250 damage AP shell every second without the need to reload. Before the Prowler could fire two 1,250 damage AP shells with a 0.5 second refire timer (some people have suggested this counts twice) and a 2.5 second reload.

    Under the old system the Prowler would have a DPS of 833.33. Under the new system the Prowler has a DPS of 1,250... a 50% buff to DPS (unless I understood your suggestion wrong).

    I mean you said that the lock-downed Prowler was a tad OP... wouldn't giving it a 50% DPS buff make it even more OP?
  4. Catalyist

    Very interesting. Shouldn't change the way the prowler is played but would add some flair to it.

    If the resulting damage numbers are about equal to what they are currently on live, I see no reason not to do this as part of some sort of MBT (or at least prowler) update. I mean, there are no new animations or mechanics, it's just a numbers tweak on the current anchored mode.
    • Up x 1
  5. Jake the Dog

    Reload time for the lockdown prowler is if I remember correctly ~1s. Plus the .5 chamber time means 2 rounds flying every 1.5s. But what you're suggesting (correct me if I'm wrong) is to fire both barrels at the same time by eliminating reload time and just counting chamber time? Or is what you're saying is that both barrels have an independent reload timer. So that there is less of a
    boom, boom, reloading.... boom boom. and more of a boom... boom... boom... boom... boom?

    Pardon the crazy last part, I've partially lost my mind with tank OP posts. Despite my personal opinions (and that of others who've played all the tanks extensively thinking that none of the tanks are actually OP), as long as it remains balanced I'm happy. However take into consideration that the prowler is terrible mid range and that if you make lockdown innefective at long range the tank will only be left to close range unless there was a velocity buff on it.

    Consider the following as its the current tank balance:
    Prowler: Close and Long ranges
    Magrider: Mid and Long ranges
    Vanguard: Close and Mid ranges

    If you made the prowler imo a better mid range candidate it could quite possibly put the current balance in an odd spot. Just keep it in mind. Granted, its debateble if our opinions even matter.

    And as always Im inclined to say lockdown prowler is not OP, due to that without it its not really any good at long range in fact its worse than the vanguard, and at mid range undeployed it becomes a joke trying to land all your slow moving shots especially when you're moving and the enemies a magrider. At the mid range w/o cover you need to be mobile and at least seeking cover.
  6. DashRendar


    I actually haven't because life is hard sometimes. I just did though. What I found is that with max Lockdown, the Prowler currently takes 1.8s to fire two shots and rechamber the next two, given max reload time on the gun. With my suggestion, you fire one shot, wait 1s, fire the next, wait 1s, fire the next... etc. By my estimated calculations (admittedly drunken and tired) my suggestions are actually a nerf to locked down DPS, which I didn't intend for. For balance purposes, the new chamber time may need to be lessened to .91 or .82, but that's still an example of some new flexibility that we have on this mechanic, that we didn't have with the old one.
    • Up x 1
  7. DashRendar


    Yes, exactly. Less boom boom... boom boom... and more boom.. boom.. boom.. boom.
    • Up x 1
  8. Jake the Dog

    So what you're suggesting is maintaining its dps but keeping the alpha lower? I'd be fine with that.
    • Up x 1
  9. DashRendar


    Exactly. Faction traits, playstyle, and all that.
    • Up x 2
  10. Jake the Dog

    Would make it less viable in close combat and give it a disadvantage on tanks that sneak up on it. It would need to maintain its anchor dps and velocity buff though. And in my honest opinion people deploying against other tanks in close combat is a bad habit to get into due to good tankers sh****** all over newer players who try to.
  11. ColonelChingles

    Yea... I think I forgot to add in the lockdown reload reduction to my numbers and was comparing a lockdown Prowler to a regular Prowler.

    It also of course would depend on the level of lockdown involved and whether they also invested certs into reduced reload speed.

    AP Prowler- 1,250x2 damage every 3 seconds... 833 DPS
    AP Prowler w/ max Reload- 1,250x2 damage every 2.5 seconds... 1,000 DPS
    AP Prowler w/ current max Anchor- 1,250x2 damage every 1.8 seconds... 1,389 DPS
    AP Prowler w/ max Reload and current max Anchor- 1,250x2 damage every 1.3 seconds... 1,923 DPS
    AP Prowler w/ new Anchor (no idea how it scales with level)- 1,250 damage every 1 second... 1,250 DPS
    AP Prowler w/ max Reload (assuming it helps) and new Anchor- 1,250 damage every 0.5 second... 2,500 DPS

    So if the new lockdown is used by itself and is compared to the old lockdown, that's a 10% DPS nerf. But if you compare the Reload and lockdown combinations, then the new system represents a 30% DPS buff.

    For comparison purposes:
    AP Vanguard w/ max Reload- 2,075 damage every 3.5 seconds... 593 DPS
    AP Magrider w/ max Reload- 1,865 damage every 3.25 seconds... 574 DPS

    @ 2,500 pre-resist DPS a lockdowned AP Prowler would kill an unshielded Vanguard from the front in about 4.4 seconds (just going by DPS and not reload cycles). It would kill a shielded Vanguard from the front in about 6.6 seconds.
  12. DashRendar


    Good work. Although, the stock (no upgrades) Prowler actually has a cycle time of 3.5s due to the .5s counting twice before the reload time kicks in. Gun reload maxed reduces reload time by .5s per cycle, and max Anchor mode reduces resulting reload time to .8s, plus .5s x 2.
    • Up x 1
  13. Stargazer86

    Heck, I'd settle for a fix so that when I press the deploy button, the Prowler actually deploys. You know, instead of having to sit still for 5 seconds while frantically mashing the deploy key in the vain hope it FINALLY works.
    • Up x 4
  14. DashRendar


    Haha, true.
  15. Demigan

    whaaaaaaaaaaaaat?
    Normal Prowler a tad UP? The Prowler outperforms the other two tanks on almost every single metric, the few metrics where it isn't first, it's a close second. The unanchored Prowler has more DPS than the other two tanks, even when taking armor ratings and weapon-specific damage reduction into account.

    I think I understand your reasoning about the lockdown being a buff, but you wrote it down a bit wrong. The Lockdown is a direct buff of damage and muzzle velocity. Magburner is a direct (but more temporary) buff to speed and acceleration. Vanguard shield is a direct buff to health and nothing else.

    You also state that the balance of the Prowler needs to be carefully calibrated as it also affects Lockdown so much. I think they did, and they did it wrong. Rather than make the Prowler a normal tank, but buff it tremendously when locked down as a compensation for being stuck in place, they decided to make the standard Prowler a beast against just about anything, and give it a smaller (relatively speaking) buff when in Lockdown.

    Basically, getting rid of the reload but doubling refire time would be a buff to Lockdown of 0,3 seconds less time needed for each salvo of 2 shots before you can fire the next. That's 0,3 seconds over a maxed anchor+max reload speed.
    Edit1+2: Taking into account that the refire time counts twice you go from 1,3 seconds (1,8 seconds, refire counts twice!) to 2 seconds per salvo. So you would in fact decrease the effectiveness of a Prowler and remove synergies with max reload speed.
    However, how does this work when you have level 1 Anchor, as opposed to max rank? What will increase? I thought right now the Anchor mode decreases reload speed with each higher level, why would anyone want to buy anything more than level 1 Anchor after this? You don't need to max out your reload speed as that's eliminated, and since rank 1 already eliminates reload while muzzle velocity is a set amount regardless of level there's no further benefit of higher levels.

    Edit1: also I think this change is rather impossible in the current game setting. Either you have to implement some instant-reload, which might be impossible so you would need 0,1 second reload or something, or you have to ram all ammo into the barrel... but how will this act around the ammo resupply system? Will you suddenly stop being able to regain ammo? Will regained ammo instantly appear in your barrel (which causes problems with the game code, I'll guarantee it)?


    I think the current lockdown is already capable of being balanced easily.
    You assumed that Lockdown was rigid. Increase in Prowler capabilities=increase in Lockdown capabilities. But if you increase Prowler capabilities, you can decrease Lockdown accordingly so it doesn't become OP, or visa versa. So you can push the base Prowler to be less powerful than it is now while buffing Lockdown.
  16. Demigan

    Now that you mention it, it does count twice.

    If you check a video frame by frame of a Prowler firing, you'll see that after the second shot it takes 0,5 seconds (the refire time) before it starts reloading. So yes, the refire time counts twice. I forgot, even though it was an important part in bringing the DPS of the Vanguard and Prowler closer together after armor ratings etc were taken into account (Prowler still won).
    • Up x 1
  17. DashRendar


    Sure seems it. The Prowler doesn't have increased armor and a shield ability like the Vanguard, and can't MJ moonwalk like the Maggie. The only "trait" that the Prowler has is its front loaded DPS, and sometimes it feels like that is lacking, and sometimes it feels like that is too powerful. It can be improved.
  18. FBVanu


    The Magburner is the ability with the smallest effect/advantage .. it only lasts 1 second.. Prowler's anchor lasts as long as you can get an Ammo Sundy to stay alive near-by.. there is no limit to it. Although I personally don't like the anchor mode.. I don't think it needs any changes..
    MBTs are pretty balanced.
    • Up x 1
  19. Shiaari


    Sounds good.

    Make it so.
    • Up x 1
  20. Jake the Dog

    Now while I agree it wouldn't do much against the prowler with your suggestion. Which to my knowledge is to maintain its dps and make it shoot differently. Which is all well and dandy. But you can basically say that kind of line for every tank, the vanguards only got its armor/shield and the magriders only got sidestrafing.

    I personally find each of the tanks extremely fun in very unique ways, none too powerful, maneuverable or tanky for the others to overcome with a degree of skill and intelligence.

    Sometimes I feel OP in vanguards and magriders as well. Just playing other tanks a couple times now and then doesn't really get you the proper feel.

    I feel too powerful when I trap other tanks in places where they can't out maneuver me in a mag or dodge every single one of their rounds.

    I feel too powerful when I destroy another tank whilst barely taking a scratch in a vanguard with my shield.

    I feel too powerful when I kill another tank with less dakka than my prowler.

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