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  • started a topic Flag Run Feedback

    Flag Run Feedback

    There wasn't an existing thread for this and [MENTION=6338]JoeWilcox[/MENTION] requested some feedback so just rolling this out there to hopefully get some discussion going.

    I've played about 9 or 10 fully populated matches of Flag Run since it was included a few builds ago. It feels fresh and when we're able to get enough people together to play it it's very enjoyable. It feels like a much more focused and simplified version of Assault at the core and definitely benefits from having a consistent win condition across maps which is something that seems to prohibit Assault from being an easy to pick up gametype for either new players or convey to spectators.

    Main issues I've experienced and my thoughts on them:

    I've seen some confused players play Flag Run as if it's CTF, picking up the attacking team's flag from the defending team's base and attempting to 'cap' it back at the start of the map. I think the thinking here is that they see the Flag is an objective and assume it's CTF, the HUD guides them to it and the instinctive thing would seem to be to try and escape with it rather than push forward for people not aware of the the way the mode works or the map layout. Also the mode is griefing prone for the same reason, someone can pick up the flag and retreat with it undoing potentially several minutes of progress the team has made in just a few seconds. There could be plenty of situations where attackers would want to retreat and rally or juke the defense so this seems like a difficult thing to protect against, having some kind capture point / checkpoint where the flag can't go backwards from could help immensely but would have to be designed very carefully to not be prohibitive to the way the attackers play.

    The attacking team frequently 'forgets' to bring the flag with them, it seems like usually one person on the team needs to take responsibility for taking the initiative of sticking with the flag base until it spawns and bringing it to the fight, it's just when they don't do this the team can easily charge ahead unaware that nobody has picked it up. Largely the spawn delay on it seems to be at fault, people just want to get into the action and not wait for it to spawn. - I can think of a few potential fixes for this but none that don't have an impact on the gameplay. For instance keeping the attacking base exit doors locked shut until the flag is picked up, or having the attacking flag spawn further along in the map in a specifically designed focal area where it's harder to 'miss'. The latter of these is probably a bad idea as it doesn't delay the attackers at all.

    If the defending team is juked and passed by the flag carrier at the first defending spots of a round it's very hard for the team to react to it in time and often it's realized when it's too late. This is fun for the flag carrier but basically un-enjoyable and confusing for everybody else. I do like the fact that this can be done and I think it can add some very enjoyable clutch moments to a match where a losing team can pull back by doing such a thing. But I think ultimately the defenders need to know by some kind of very clear warning that the initial defensable perimeter (in Blackstone's case the main gate and broken wall) has been breached. Even if unprepared for, so long as they get notified clearly and instantly of this when it happens rather than it being something that someone has to notice and then react to I think this will solve the problem - that is if it is to be considered a problem. Like I say I don't hate this at all but it seems like a disorganized or inexperienced team can very easily get steamrolled doing this and that there's basically no risk or downside to trying to do it so the flag carrier should always try to juke the flag past defenders in the early-game. Whether this should be a level design consideration or something the mode accounts for isn't clear.

    Good stuff:

    Rallying is great. In the previous build the lack of anything like it made me want to have a translocator to get back in the action quicker even though it would be totally unsuitable to the gametype. Messaging on this is reasonably good on this so far and once you get in the habit of using it it's a solid feature. Definitely not the easiest thing to convey to inexperienced players though.

    Repulsion shield! I go with this most of the time as it really seems to be the best powerup overall, more so on defense. Good fun to use.

    Redeemer as part of Flag Run's meta is a really good use of it though I can see if this is a standard feature of the mode it could be prohibitive on level design so that nuking the defender's flag area at a last stand is made challenging and not turn into basically a guaranteed win in the late game. Not a concern at this point though.

    __

    I don't have many suggestions at this point but as far as activatable powerups go I think that one that serve as temporary area denial or an obstacle could go a long way. I'm reminded very much of the stasis volumes that could be deployed in vehicle modes in UT3 which blocked hitscan and slowed projectiles. A smaller person-deployable version of this could be an interesting way of soft-obstructing certain choke points or forcing attackers another another way. Or even just a simple visibility blocker like a smokebomb could have some really interesting gameplay implications.

    That's most of what I have to say on the mode so far with the one map currently, definitely looking forward to having more maps for it.
    Last edited by Mangley; 07-24-2016, 10:22 PM.

  • replied
    Originally posted by _Lynx View Post
    It's still in development with mechanics being changed and adjusted. P.S. Two years?
    Oh sorry, for some reason I thought the mode has been around for a very long time. Its only been a few months ish.

    So its still being worked on then! ok cool.

    I am actually thinking of something where the map has a series of control points where you have to have the flag carrier stand in an area for X amount of time to unlock the next node. Maybe have 2-3 nodes and the final node exposes the capture point.

    It just seems like an idea that might work. I have not yet played the mode with people yet but I feel it really is way too easy to solo cap the flag ect. It would add some degree of pacing. My main complaint right now is that it feels very out of control and hectic with no real need to do team fights or work together.

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  • replied
    It's still in development with mechanics being changed and adjusted. P.S. Two years?

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  • replied
    Fast forward 2 years. What is the status of this game mode? I have checked it out recently, looking at how many maps it has seems to imply the mode had a lot of attention at some point. But the game mode is not even listed with other game modes at the moment.

    I see a lot of potentially simple changes that can be made to this game mode to improve it by a lot. But I want to get peoples thoughts on this before I bother to move forward with anything.
    Last edited by Castle; 11-12-2016, 10:26 PM.

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  • replied
    Really looking forward to a new gametype. Showdown and Elimination are not for me. Some of the things Joe says in this thread sound great.

    How do I activate the power-up?

    I don't see a thread for Castle-Blackstone so I thought I would mention here that on Skilled and Adept the bots will all bunch up at one of the doors, making the map basically unplayable with bots. They are trying to use the teleporter but they can't open the door so they just stand there. I managed to hold it open for the enemy bots twice. The first time the FC made it through and I immediately followed him. He was instantly killed on the other end of the teleporter by some of my bots that happen to be right there. I held the door open again and this time the enemy FC got through again and with two other enemy bots. They were shooting at me while I was holding open the door (ungrateful jerks) but they were more worried about going through the teleporter then killing me so I survived and went through after them. All three had been instantly killed by some of my bots who, again, just happen to be on the other side. Edit: It's possible there was some telefragging.

    When my team was attacking my bots where doing the same thing. I don't know of a command to order the bot to give me the flag so I hung back and waited until he got killed by the other team then grabbed the flag and scored a cap. That's when I quit.



    Last edited by Binger; 08-11-2016, 08:41 PM.

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  • replied
    What are the objectives in creating a gametype.... What is the initial concept? What is being acheived? Which type of skills should this game use most? These quiestinos would help guide feedback.

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  • replied
    [MENTION=6338]JoeWilcox[/MENTION]
    Very well ...we'll see how this will work when the game mode is final.
    But it sounds like the better solution.

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  • replied
    there already is spawn protection anyway?
    until you pickup a weapon, or shoot, or 2-3 seconds elapses

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  • replied
    It's not spawn protection per se as there is no timed component to it. It's a slight buff at spawn to lessen the blow of first encounter without reducing the lethally of the weapons afterwards.

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  • replied
    Originally posted by JoeWilcox View Post
    The extra armor on spawn isn't about the rockets per se, it's about making sure the player survives his first hit (be it rockets, flak, sniper or most combos) but not being a complete tank/bullet sponge. It's an evolution of the helment on Face which was added to make sure a fresh spawn could survive a headshot. The idea here is that first hit shouldn't be able to kill a fresh spawn but someone who is in combat shouldn't be able to tank back up without finding needed armor pickups. In other words, slightly less lethal against new spawns. FWIW: I do not agree with this direction but so far I'm in the minority.
    You are talking about Spawn-Protection ...a very common mod on UT99 server.
    A fresh spawned player gets a protection for some seconds (2 or 3)...mostly time enough to get a weapon.
    opponents can see the red or blue shield effect and know instantly why they can't kill this guy, and can safe the ammo.
    Sometimes it can get really annoying ...especially when the spawned player is using his temporary invulnerability to pester the others with the Enforcer or rushes with the Impact-Hammer into them.
    An extra armour on spawn sounds more favourable.

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  • replied
    ^^ thanks Joe, I actually appreciate the write-up (no troll), but ****..... like I said before, some of these "solutions" are like complex algorithm matrixes to things that arent even problems in the first place. It's like If I'm trying to get to the 2nd floor of a house, I try to build up a shaky tower from a cardboard box so I can grab on to a water drain and monkey climb up a wall to get into a window, instead of walking in through the front door and taking the stairs.

    It's kind of funny you guys mention the need for fronts and battle lines, but also include alternate paths that would allow someone to just walk behind enemy lines if they felt like it. The only difference is that it would be more slow and boring.

    Well in any case, maybe consider my shield gun idea. Jumping around with a shield gun would make it more "Unreal Tournament". Also check out my genius ideas for Showdown in the other thread. I actually DO appreciate the effort it took to write that stuff up though.

    Originally posted by JoeWilcox View Post
    FWIW: I do not agree with this direction but so far I'm in the minority.
    Oh yeah, and youre NOT in the minority. Try doing some more straw-polls in the future, I think you'll find that the community is a good (and under-utilized) resource for ideas on what to do.
    Last edited by BigFatErik; 07-26-2016, 02:01 PM.

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  • replied
    Let me clarify exactly how Rally works right now (it will most like change, evolve, etc). When the flag carrier hasn't been in combat for a short period of time, 2 things happen. The Flag Carrier gets the ability to issue a call to Rally and the other players get the ability to Rally. The FC's call to Rally does nothing but remain players they can rally with a text and audio que. The player doesn't have to wait for the call. He can rally any time they are not in combat if Rally is available or never rally. They have control. Right now the messaging is temp/hacked in but eventually I expect it to the be a nice call out on the HUD, probably like a ALT of some form with an effect to draw attention to it.

    I forget if defensive rally's are in the current build. If they are expect them to be removed. A lot of work is ongoing in terms of Rally so keep that in mind.

    still say having a "flag run" translocator that works on charges like in UT2004, and only recharges once every 15 seconds or so would be the answer.
    The TL would allow both offense and defense to instant nullify any type of front much like it does in UT CTF where especially in public server play, defense is about running down the FC and returning the flag VS stopping a player from grabbing the flag. It's a great change up of the CTF formula and works great in CTF but not here.

    I made a suggestion in the latest build thread to replace the Rally button with a revamped spawn system taking advantage of the 2d overhead map. Like in showdown, a player would be able to pick a spawn point preferably at a weapon or other power-up around the current disputed flag radius for both the offensive and defensive team. Just to be clear spawns outside this spawn radius would be disabled.
    Using the 2D overhead map would slow the game down far too much however we are prototyping the idea of fixed activatable Rally points to see how it plays out.

    The "rally" concept seems about as good as "nerfing" the rockets by having everyone spawn with 50 armor in every gametype instead of just lowering the damage.
    The extra armor on spawn isn't about the rockets per se, it's about making sure the player survives his first hit (be it rockets, flak, sniper or most combos) but not being a complete tank/bullet sponge. It's an evolution of the helment on Face which was added to make sure a fresh spawn could survive a headshot. The idea here is that first hit shouldn't be able to kill a fresh spawn but someone who is in combat shouldn't be able to tank back up without finding needed armor pickups. In other words, slightly less lethal against new spawns. FWIW: I do not agree with this direction but so far I'm in the minority.

    I don't think its necessary to have the translator to make this a good popular gametype for UT. I've seen enough demand from UT CTF players to have a non-translocator version of CTF which I believe FlagRun could become without sacrificing the excitement of a normal CTF translocator match with proper map development specific for FR maps.
    The TL is a huge barrier to entry item that also has a ability to absolutely nullify level design and tactics. It's well worth it in CTF where I think it gives the game a really fresh angle on traditional CTF rules. But it shouldn't be everywhere.

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  • replied
    Originally posted by BigFatErik View Post
    ^^ thanks for the explanation there mangley.

    that idea is....... like..... way unnecessarily complicated. So much so that its making my head hurt. If You guys (epic) want to do everything in your power to avoid adding the translocator for some bizarre reason like "denying geometry" and "creating battle lines", then fine, good ol' legacy CTF will continue to be the gametype of choice for normal players.

    I still say having a "flag run" translocator that works on charges like in UT2004, and only recharges once every 15 seconds or so would be the answer.

    The "rally" concept seems about as good as "nerfing" the rockets by having everyone spawn with 50 armor in every gametype instead of just lowering the damage.
    I agree that a Rally button is unnecessarily complicated and makes the gametype much harder to pick up after a first play. I made a suggestion in the latest build thread to replace the Rally button with a revamped spawn system taking advantage of the 2d overhead map. Like in showdown, a player would be able to pick a spawn point preferably at a weapon or other power-up around the current disputed flag radius for both the offensive and defensive team. Just to be clear spawns outside this spawn radius would be disabled.

    I don't think its necessary to have the translator to make this a good popular gametype for UT. I've seen enough demand from UT CTF players to have a non-translocator version of CTF which I believe FlagRun could become without sacrificing the excitement of a normal CTF translocator match with proper map development specific for FR maps.

    While on that topic, I also don't like seeing maps which are developed for TSD or FR without a TSD- or FR- prefix. This shows just how "generic" the maps are made for a gametype which didn't really take much thought from the side of the mappers. It's almost a disgrace to think that this entire blueprint system has been made for mappers to take advantage of learning how to program but we somehow can't still escape the generic DM- prefix? I don't mean to put the mappers down because I know its still early development in regards to the maps for the gametypes, but I can't say TSD was mis-handled really well after seeing how popular Elimination is in comparison.
    Last edited by Quadj130; 07-26-2016, 04:00 AM.

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  • replied
    ^^ thanks for the explanation there mangley.

    that idea is....... like..... way unnecessarily complicated. So much so that its making my head hurt. If You guys (epic) want to do everything in your power to avoid adding the translocator for some bizarre reason like "denying geometry" and "creating battle lines", then fine, good ol' legacy CTF will continue to be the gametype of choice for normal players.

    I still say having a "flag run" translocator that works on charges like in UT2004, and only recharges once every 15 seconds or so would be the answer.

    The "rally" concept seems about as good as "nerfing" the rockets by having everyone spawn with 50 armor in every gametype instead of just lowering the damage.

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  • replied
    Originally posted by BigFatErik View Post
    Okay so this "rally" feature.... explain it to me/us? I was playing the other night, and out of the 5 or so games that finished, I think I saw instructions to "rally" a grand total of maybe three times. How do you get it to come up? Sit in one place for a while? It needs to be better explained @_@ I still think y'all are crazy for refusing the translocator, but I'll give it another shot with this "rally" business when I or anyone else figures out how to do it reliably.
    If the attacking flag carrier is out of combat, teammates can 'rally' by pressing Enter to teleport to the flag carrier's location. It requires a little co-ordination but the flag carrier can also prompt teammates to do it by pressing enter when out of combat.

    Defenders can also 'rally' to teleport to their flag stand but they can only activate this once per round.

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