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A major problem with CTF

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  • replied
    Originally posted by ZenMaster View Post
    It was very popular and it was lots of fun playing CTF back these days. Unfortunately, this changed after UT99.
    in my eyes it changed in ut99 already. with the introduction of lowping the game changed a lot and ppl were going for pulse, asmd, sniper all.the.time.
    this was the time when the hitscan problem (hand in hand with defensive play being beneficial) occured for the first time. also the maps scaled up. coret, dreary and such were not built for hitscan stuff. go check the newer ones.

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  • replied
    Originally posted by WHIPperSNAPper View Post
    CTF worked just fine in UT99, so why mess with it? If a map makes for bad game play, it won't be very popular.


    I agree here. UT99 CTF had a very strong playerbase with lots of clans, ladders, tournaments etc. It was very popular and it was lots of fun playing CTF back these days. Unfortunately, this changed after UT99.


    Originally posted by Buffekerel View Post
    Another balance is people NOT PLAYING IT.

    At least some people are trying to fix problems or think about problems and discuss about them.
    Maybe, but please keep in mind there are lots of people trying to fix nonexistent "problems".
    Without talking to anyone in particular here, sometimes I think those guys should go for a different game instead of trying to distort the UT series to a point of there liking (beyond recognition as an UT title).
    Last edited by ZenMaster; 08-27-2014, 03:57 AM.

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  • replied
    CTF worked just fine in UT99, so why mess with it? If a map makes for bad game play, it won't be very popular.

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  • replied
    Originally posted by R.Flagg View Post
    If you had to fight to get the flag halfway home, make them fight to Carry the Flag back home. Whats good for the goose, should be good for the gander (or something like that).

    If you speak to some of the elder natives, you'll hear them tell the tale of a man, a man named Versix. who did a version of this CarryTheFlag style 'back in the day' for UT. But then over time, he sort of let it die on the vine. But while men come and go, ideas remain. Then we, @ Chaos, picked up the banner of this idea and carried it a bit further. (And let me tell you kind sir , the issues that come up when putting this into play are no small matter, whew!)

    I presume people have actually played this concept a decent amount over the years since it's been a discussion topic as long as this genre has existed. How on earth do flag standoffs ever end? We see standoffs that last half as long as the match already and sometimes push the lengths of OT and that's with instant telefrag returns and powerups usually going to return players. Having to fight your way across the map twice to end one (and have at least a 1 man handicap on the return run) sounds immeasurably more frustrating than having your teammates cherry pick instead of covering. And believe me I've yelled at my monitor plenty about that.

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  • replied
    Attacking the enemy base should be a team effort; the scenario you propose in the first post should never happen. It happens in public play, sure, but it still isn't good play. If you have a few buddies one or two can cover you/delay respawning enemies while you fall back. I saw CS GO mentioned, and its a good example in situations such as the hostage maps. One guy cannot push in and grab the hostage and get out without cover. CTF also isn't just about breaking defenses therefore capturing the flag should be easy. Its a very dynamic game. Assault is more of a gametype focused on breaking defenses.

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  • replied
    Originally posted by DECA1 View Post
    Ok, so we probably all agree that the hardest part of CTF is getting that **** thing back to our base. And that is because the enemy team will always be alerted to your whereabouts and that you're an important target THE MOMENT you take the flag.

    So imagine you're playing a 5v5, 4 of your teammates are defending and you're the solo attacker! The enemy team, however, are all attacking and have only one defender. So if you manage to get the enemy's flag, while 4 of them are attacking and only 1 is defending, technically you only have to beat one guy to get the flag.

    But then that guy respawns, right at the base. So you have to kill him again. By the time you do that, those attackers are all back and trying to protect their flag. So even if you kill all of them in one life, the ones respawning are still probably going to be fast enough, using translocators and whatnot, to reach you AGAIN.

    And now, suppose that after your heroic efforts and 8+ kills alone in a single life, your team comes to protect you and the enemy engages them. If by some stretch of the imagination you die and one of the enemy team translocates to their flag (which really isn't that hard to do), their flag is instantly safe and all your efforts have been for absolutely nothing.
    I think I understand your overall point, and I am 100% in agreement with you. The actual details about how you described the situation though has left you open for some fair counterpoints. The whole part about solo-Rambo-ing for a flag cap and so forth. People can (and will) spend hours picking apart the details in that part. Others will insult you and say you don't understand CTF, or that you just suck, that your sister is ugly and your Momma dresses you funny, and whatever else they feel they need to say in order to shut down your opinion. And in the meantime miss the overall issue. The forest for the trees kind of thing.

    The real issue as I see it, isn't how you got the enemy flag halfway or most-way across the map, all that matters is that you and your team got the flag that far. No, the real issue is that you had to fight to get it there, and now all they have to do is barely touch it and it auto-magically returns aaalll the waaaay back safe at home. To me, and to some others out there in the world (scattered in small packets like some kind of rebel forces) that just smacks of BS.

    So, anyway, it was mentioned in this thread, and you touched on it a bit yourself;

    Make the flag not return instantly;
    .

    Bingo.

    If you had to fight to get the flag halfway home, make them fight to Carry the Flag back home. Whats good for the goose, should be good for the gander (or something like that).

    If you speak to some of the elder natives, you'll hear them tell the tale of a man, a man named Versix. who did a version of this CarryTheFlag style 'back in the day' for UT. But then over time, he sort of let it die on the vine. But while men come and go, ideas remain. Then we, @ Chaos, picked up the banner of this idea and carried it a bit further. (And let me tell you kind sir , the issues that come up when putting this into play are no small matter, whew!)

    Personally, I would be happy if every game ever made from this point forward started using this logic. Then, maybe someday, the world will collectively look back at what is considered 'normal' CTF these days and think "My God! How did we ever live in a world like that?!" Short of that, well.. guess we're counting on mods/muts.

    tl:dr - They used to try to cure disease with blood-sucking leeches.

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  • replied
    The main issue I see here is that you (OP) try to play CTF in single player mode.

    CTF is a team game and you need to approach it as such.

    CS:GO shows how far you can get with good matchmaking and a mandatory voicecom. Even new players learn how to act as a team.
    We never had such a feature with previous UT games, so pubs were more chaotic and sometimes frustrating.

    But even then you had streaks of good teamplay simply because players learned what they had to do in a teamgame.

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  • replied
    Honestly. I don't mind if the enemy team spawns next to the flag on a map while I am there to grab it. It is part of the challenge. All maps have their own challenges that needs to be mastered. As an iCTF player my self I have played quite a lot UT99 maps with some really bad players and some extremely good players. Each game it self have been fun most of the times no matter the difficulty.

    Yes I have been angry many times because me, or my team are so bad, or that the teams have been uneven. But who cares? That is the reason UT99 is still my favourite game of all time! I had to fight my way to victory every single time. And when you run into the enemy base and grab that flag and you can feel how the heart is pumping a lot faster and you kind of get an adrenaline kick out of it because now it is all about survival. You have no idea what will happen to you and where the enemy is, just do what you can and run back to the base or if you are skilled enough search for the enemy flag carrier. ;D Ahh.. those awesome good old times!

    Some maps have also had the enemy spawn point in your own base while you as a player spawn in the enemy base. This is also a fun challenge.


    And hopefully CTF-andAction will have their spawn points rotated into the right direction in UT4.

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  • replied
    Alternative : Make the dropped flag unreturnable except by flag carrier, and have the defenders defend the flag for about 15 seconds before the flag returns on its' own. (idea from that UNF mod it UT99)

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  • replied
    The OP's perspective is understandable if you consider someone who is newer to CTF and playing in an unorganized manner (i.e. the majority of people who will be playing this game). Even high level players get frustrated trying to run solo offense in pubs; I don't think changing the gametype itself is the answer but the root problem is worth a look. In my experience most shooter games' CTF modes end up being 99% people just killing each other in mid. The translocator and emphasis on movement in UT helps stretch things out a bit, but I'm curious if this "forget the flag I'll just go kill people in mid" mentality is due to how frustrating it can be to try to actually run the flag without any coordination. Things like built-in voice chat and some of the other ideas being suggested around the forum could help a lot, but it's definitely something worth considering from a user experience perspective. In my experience organized offense is the hardest thing for people to grasp in pub style gameplay, so any way to encourage it would be helpful. In a more abstract sense, clever map design can sometimes help too. I always liked how CTF-Pistola puts armors and powerups in the key choke points where you typically want your teammates to be for cover or flag cutoffs. It might be my imagination (I wish we had heatmaps and whatnot at our disposal) but it seemed like that helped nudge people into helpful positions even if they didn't realize it.

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  • replied
    Originally posted by Buffekerel View Post
    Another balance is people NOT PLAYING IT.

    At least some people are trying to fix problems or think about problems and discuss about them.
    Well it all comes down to what type of game you want to see:

    For an eSports game - and this UT is going to be one - I personally want a potentially very high skill ceiling. The game itself basically should be impossible to master and because there is always something you learn, always something you can improve on, it continually draws you in.

    At the same time it should continually be attractive to new players! How do you do this? With a very sophisticated spectator/replay mode, that allows to show the rapid action of UT in a consumable way (think about football world cup - it's all about the camera). With matchmaking, so noobs will fight noobs and pros will fight pros. With tutorials, maybe a single player campaign, and last but not least with community content: Streams, videos, tournaments, forums, reddit, twitter, etc.

    I believe that both are possible, and I persoanally wouldn't want to sacrifice one over the other.
    Last edited by FliccC; 08-12-2014, 03:11 PM.

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  • replied
    Originally posted by duffte View Post
    you know who balances this "problem"? skill. it would be just boring if it was easy to capture a flag.
    i really would like to see ut dropping pants entirely not trying to balance the **** out of the game. the real problem is that the fixes caused more problems so far than solving. introducing new people to a game is one thing, trying to cut the tough parts is another.
    Another balance is people NOT PLAYING IT.

    At least some people are trying to fix problems or think about problems and discuss about them.

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  • replied
    Originally posted by duffte View Post
    you know who balances this "problem"? skill. it would be just boring if it was easy to capture a flag.
    i really would like to see ut dropping pants entirely not trying to balance the **** out of the game. the real problem is that the fixes caused more problems so far than solving. introducing new people to a game is one thing, trying to cut the tough parts is another.
    Oh c'mon. Basically any design flaw can be overcome/balanced by "skill". Going around those flaws and getting used to them in general generally requires skill, I agree, but that's not something that should be encouraging. It's basically like getting used to a technical problem in a game and using it to your advantage (like exploiting some rendering bugs in Call of Duty. I remember we could get to parts of the map we shouldn't be able to reach if we jumped on the right place at the right time in MW2) only instead of a bug or mesh that does or doesn't appear, it's a flaw in the general concept of the game.

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  • replied
    Originally posted by xios View Post
    Weapons CTF is typically always a 3a/2d or in Europe 2a/1m/2d or 2a/3d positioning so this 4/1 vs 1/4 setup is highly unusual and I've never seen it played in high level competition so this whole complaint doesn't really fit the nature of the gametype to begin with. Nonetheless, I disagree even in this scenario. You do not necessarily need to kill a defender over and over once you have the flag (especially if you have proper cover). It is unlikely they are going to spawn in front of you each respawn and it is also more likely that you should be pistoning away with the flag or pretzeling around somewhere to evade them after you have killed them.



    I'm having a hard time following you here. Having to manage where and who you kill or put damage on should be viewed as a great challenge, just like in a game of chess. It is something that you learn and master over time with experience, depending on what specific position you are running, who you're playing, the map you're playing, and who you're playing with, etc. There's a lot of variable's in play and that is what makes it fun and interesting. In any case again, spawn's are randomized to an extent so the idea that killing someone in their base is an issue simply doesn't hold true.



    Spawn location's are dependent on the map maker. So how well the spawns are placed all depends on the map and how well that was thought out. Ideally you want some spawn's which are farther away and some which are closer or behind the flag.
    I see your points. I agree that the map design should generally reflect the gametype's nature, which just isn't the case. Most maps have respawning way too close to the flagstand and that is just unbalanced risk/reward.

    Also, I should make it clear that I really am not and never have been a competitive player or have ever worried much about eSports in general. Not to say my skill or knowledge of the game is much different than someone that does live in that environment, I just never cared about it, dunno why. It never managed to hold my attention for long. Watching some tournament of a game I own just makes me want to play it.

    Just because we've learned how to go around the game's design flaws over the years doesn't make them any less flawed. You mentioned the game of chess, and I agree to some extent - it really has a great deal of strategy involved. Though that is something I see as an issue, because that's not what you should be worrying about to begin with. The real concerns should be with mindgames over a firefight or positioning, and not considering whether to deal damage or not. Maybe it's a philosophically straightforward/simplistic way of looking at things, but if you're playing a skill-based, fast paced first person shooter, you have a gun in your hands and you see an enemy in your way, you shouldn't have to think much. You either fight and dedicate your attention to shooting, or run away and try to reposition or regain health. Worrying whether or not killing him is a good idea really isn't the best thing to have your players consider.

    So, yeah. That's just my opinion. Maybe the more hardcore fanbase (even though I consider myself an avid UT fan/player) likes the gametype just the way it is, I dunno. It's just something I've always resented. I've always felt that other games' approach to CTF made much more sense than UT, where returning the flag is never instant and the spawn points for defending players are always far away from the point they have to defend.

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  • replied
    The spawn points are not really an issue. If you get used to it you can use that knowledge to your advantage both as an attacker as well as a defender, I'll explain:

    1. As an attacker the spawn points give you a reason to move. If you have the flag that means you want to move out of the base as fast as possible as soon as you grabbed the flag. Now, depending on the map, your team mates and your teams strategy, you usually have 3 options once you grab the flag.
      • Either you try to kill the new spawning defenders immediately, because chances are that they are not equipped with the right weapon to kill you, which gives you as an attacker quite a bit of advantage.
      • You try to run as fast as you can, for example by using the hammer-jump. You try to put as many distance between you and the defender so that you can dictate the place of the next combat. The farther the enemy is killed from it's own base the more that kill is usual worth.
      • You try to stall, confuse your enemy. For example by hiding in their base, while you trick them in thinking that you're already halfway across the map.

    2. As a defender these spawn-points force you to be super effective in your own base, because having to leave your own base is extremely risky and would put you at a big disadvantage. Ideally you kill the attackers before they even grab the flag. As long as you control your flag point you have the advantage in combat. This base-advantage is so great indeed, that it is in your best interest to maintain or regain that advantage as soon as possible. Most defenders for example suicide as soon as the flag is returned, in order to be in their own base. Of course there are drawbacks to this, you lose all your pickups (weapons, shield), but just being able to be back in your own base, before an enemy can grab the flag is worth even a suicide.


    You see, the spawn points are not a "major problem" but it's a gameplay mechanic that gives very dynamic advantages and disadvantages to both attackers and defenders. Of course you need to get experience in when to kill an enemy. Learning where and why to kill an enemy in CTF is part of learning curve.

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