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#1 Lukoi Banacek

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 02:42 PM

PGI - next time, perhaps identify a single thread for the bulk of feedback to all go into Posted Image

Moving on to my unsolicited opinion in the meantime Posted Image:

Good:
  • The new heat cap, while *maybe* too low, is a solid touch and most importantly it finally brings the heat containment skill into both focus and consideration for most builds, whereas before it was an after thought on all but the hottest builds. Now the difference between 40 cap and 46 cap (15% heat containment) is noticeable and a true pros/cons decision to make for players with their skill tree.
  • Increased innate mobility (to those that got it), especially among the heavier mechs truly helps bring brawling back to viability as a tactic.
  • The TTK for laser vomit builds is significantly increased, which feeds into the value of DPS builds, brawling options etc. Laser vomit is by no means crushed, but it's definitely hampered with the new cap, even with heat containment and dissipation maxed in the operations tree.
  • Lower cap, but noticeably faster dissipation allows for more aggressive play (again, helps brawling imo).
Concerning:
  • Speaking of high alpha vomit builds - one of the things that makes them so effective is that they can really hurt someone immediately. This was a hard counter to brawling that makes the genre viable. Increasing TTK, bringing back brawling viability etc shouldn't necessarily mean the death knell of this playstyle. We want to keep position play, sniping, DPS, brawling etc all viable options on the table, not merely shift the meta. With the hard cap where it's at, it's hard to see if alpha-builds will still have a seat at the table at all, let alone be a viable niche if played properly (see my previous thread on practicing this with 8v8 to see where the numbers truly lie).
  • Assault mobility is borderline here. Again I feel like running the PTS again, so we can get more weapons flying on the field to see if position-play can be a viable counter strat/brawling can break positioning is needed here. I want to like where the assaults are headed, but I also don't want brawling/deathballing to be the best or only option either.
  • Ranges and durations on the Pulse laser family - frankly, I think we're pushing the game too much in the same direction still with where these weapons sit.
  • For the mechs that were considered too strong in the live server principally due to the high-alpha builds they were capable of, I'd suggest we need to take a look at giving them back some mobility (perhaps half a pass compared to the other mechs) to offset these changes to keep them viable. If something was high-alpha centric and still got a mobility buff....well, they should be happy, lol.
  • HGR - this a fantastic weapon, with fair drawbacks, but in the evolving meta that these changes engender it's borderline going to creep into the "too strong" category we seem to be leery of. 50pt PPFLD at optimal range, and significant damage well past it's brawling range, the Faffy, MAL, ANH etc might get a bit overwhelming.
I'm a fan of the direction of where this is going. Forcing players to make meaningful trade offs in the skill-tree, bringing brawl back as a viable option, forcing high alpha builds to break out a bit etc are all good directions to go.


I'm looking forward to a season of MRBC or something similar, where team A decides to go brawl and team B decides to go position play and it really comes down to who has the better execution between the two styles, and not purely based on the predominant meta.

In regards to alot of the feedback regarding the cap and whether it should be higher for larger mechs. Alot of players are arguing over flat-increases to the cap (i.e. the heavier the weight class, the higher the innate cap). I'd offer a counter view point that while increasing the heat-cap should be an option, it should come at a cost and my recommendation is that you tie it to skill tree.

Increasing heat containment, or cool running or whatever, perhaps should be at a mildly higher percentage based on the weight or weight class of the mech. This remains a player choice - what are they sacrificing to take those nodes?

For assault pilots, this might mean sacrificing speed/mobility, while light pilots might prefer to focus on the latter, choosing to use that disengagement ability to run off and cool down, in lieu of heat-management nodes in the ops tree. That being said, I'd make it very small adjustments, forcing you to take most or all of the heat containment nodes for a noticeable improvement.

If 40 is the base cap, 46 after the 15% of heat containment nodes, perhaps you just add 1-2 points per weight class (built into the function of the skill tree nodes, not a flat #) that a player can spend SP on those nodes and approach a skilled-heat-cap of around 50 or so.

Lastly, where are we on the ghost heat changes, because you really want to integrate all of these things into another PTS run before you even remotely consider going live.

Edited by Lukoi Banacek, 19 August 2018 - 03:15 PM.


#2 SFC174

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 03:41 PM

A reasonably balanced assessment. I can only say that without substantial changes to the heat cap this change will kill so many mechs/playstyles that the fallout will be substantial.

They must find a way to curb the extreme high alpha without hurting lower alpha/high dps energy builds which the current PTS does (horribly so IMO). Raising the heat cap is one way, or allowing substantial increases with commitments to extra heatsinks, skill points, whatever.

Either way this is such a massive change to how things are done that, even if managed correctly, I fear it will result in a loss of players like the skill tree implementation did. Yet I'm not sure how they could implement it in smaller steps/phases (not talking about mobility, etc., just the heat changes).

#3 Lukoi Banacek

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 03:48 PM

View PostSFC174, on 19 August 2018 - 03:41 PM, said:

Either way this is such a massive change to how things are done that, even if managed correctly, I fear it will result in a loss of players like the skill tree implementation did. Yet I'm not sure how they could implement it in smaller steps/phases (not talking about mobility, etc., just the heat changes).


While I don't agree that heat cap at 40 will kill off playstyles in droves (it will however, force people to be a bit more deliberate in their heat management on most builds), I do understand with what you're saying. If the way to work within the new system isn't immediately understandable and intuitive it will very likely drive people away as you say. The tolerance for renewing the learning curve is pretty low with our community.

That being said, I think, as I noted above, typing the heat cap issue to some kind of resource limited trade off for the player, like the skill-tree/node concept, is the best way to approach this. It forces the player to make a known decision with their limited resources on hand and it doesn't force someone completely away from their potentially preferred playstyle necessarily (if they are willing to pay the price).

While my recommendation was relatively low (1-2 improvement over the current heat containment nodes into the heat cap based on mech weight or weight class), it could absolutely be tweaked iteratively so that with some testing, PGI could find a sweet spot that allows for player choice. All while addressing the high-alpha boogieman and without completely destroying the high-alpha playstyle.

#4 SFC174

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 04:25 PM

Well, in the current PTS, AFAICT, the following playstyles are seriously gimped.

1. Clan MPL boats as energy brawlers (2 successive salvos before overheat vs. 4+ for live server)
2. Clan 3+ ERPPC boats (WHK being the most prevalent, can no longer fire off 2x2 PPC salvos)
3. Clan Meta lasvomit (2 HLL 4 ERML - no longer able to alpha without overheat - I know this was one of the targets but it wasn't really the boogeyman that the 2xGauss + lasvomit was)

It also seriously compromises the Clan assaults that run 2xLPL and 6xMPL or ERML even though those mechs are not meta or extremely high alpha (66 alpha), but these are a little more playable than the previous 3.

These playstyles affect a lot of mechs, and while I'm sounding like a broken record, Clan battlemechs with energy hardpoints are the most affected.

#5 SmokedJag

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 04:36 PM

View PostSFC174, on 19 August 2018 - 04:25 PM, said:

Well, in the current PTS, AFAICT, the following playstyles are seriously gimped.

1. Clan MPL boats as energy brawlers (2 successive salvos before overheat vs. 4+ for live server)
2. Clan 3+ ERPPC boats (WHK being the most prevalent, can no longer fire off 2x2 PPC salvos)
3. Clan Meta lasvomit (2 HLL 4 ERML - no longer able to alpha without overheat - I know this was one of the targets but it wasn't really the boogeyman that the 2xGauss + lasvomit was)

It also seriously compromises the Clan assaults that run 2xLPL and 6xMPL or ERML even though those mechs are not meta or extremely high alpha (66 alpha), but these are a little more playable than the previous 3.

These playstyles affect a lot of mechs, and while I'm sounding like a broken record, Clan battlemechs with energy hardpoints are the most affected.


MPL boat is fine, just plays differently (smaller weapons groups, rapid heat dissipation).

Warhawk would benefit from a quirk of a 50 base cap rather than 40. Warhawk C stock (2xERPPC, 2x LPL) is playable and cools like a rock but even with full skill trees the PPCs take 60% of the heat capacity and all at once.

#6 process

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 04:37 PM

My 6 cmpl Summoner was doing great, along with other cmpl builds. I also tried a 3 Warhawk build and was able to chain them very quickly. The hll and cerml is certainly just a little too hot to alpha on most maps, but you could probably stagger them so they end at the same time. Even 2 hll 3 cerml is a respectable alpha in the PTS, considering you get to fire faster.

#7 Lukoi Banacek

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 04:40 PM

Well, they've made it clear they want to break those alpha's up. So, whether we all like it or not, it's technically working as intended.

Like I mentioned, I'm very concerned with their approach to the pulse family in general and more specifically Clan side. What's the Clan HGR-like equivalent? Idk. I'd like to think something like pulse-centric mechs could be the counter (better range than HGR by far, but rapidly loses out as the engagement distances close and the PPFLD/heat curve of the HGR takes over).

That being said, bracket firing the 60+ damage builds isn't game breaking, especially if you can squeeze off an emergency alpha once in a bit. As it stands today on live though, the powers that be don't want folks firing them off back to back.

As to pure MPL skirmishers - with heat containment added to the mix, you're fine unless you go over the GH limit ime. Brawling obviously, is seriously hampered but that's the rock-paper-scissors issue at hand. No build should be top dog in the majority of ranges, hence PGI's move to break this up.

#8 SFC174

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 05:21 PM

View PostSmokedJag, on 19 August 2018 - 04:36 PM, said:

MPL boat is fine, just plays differently (smaller weapons groups, rapid heat dissipation).


Try a MAD-IIC with 9 MPL, max heatsinks (32 I think) and heat skills.

On live server Crimson, firing in groups of 5 and 4, you get to do a staggered alpha 4 times as quickly as cooldown lets you and end up at 98% heat.

On PTS, you do the same thing at you'll overheat at the end of the 2nd 5/4 stagger alpha.

That's a massive change and it takes the burst damage ability in a brawl down to useless levels. This is a very narrowly focused build (useless outside of 450m, requires more face time than ballistic/srm brawlers) and its totally gimped with PTS 2.0

edit - you can also try an 7 or 8 MPL HBK-IIC-A

Edited by SFC174, 19 August 2018 - 05:24 PM.


#9 process

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 05:33 PM

So you lose your high heat reservoir. You still end up with a net increase in DPS, which is more important for brawling.

#10 SFC174

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 05:50 PM

View Postprocess, on 19 August 2018 - 05:33 PM, said:

So you lose your high heat reservoir. You still end up with a net increase in DPS, which is more important for brawling.


Over what time period? The DPS of the live server build is substantially better for the first 4 firing cycles. The PTS build doesn't begin to surpass it until the 6th cycle. If I've got to face off with a ballistic/SRM/MRM brawler in close quarters (something that generates 80-100 pt alphas every 4 seconds which is quicker than the staggered cycle time of the 9 MPL build) the battle is decided by the 5th cycle. I'm counting on my more precision dmg to overcome the dmg deficit (20-40 pts) vs the spread build and potentially higher armor if I'm fighting an IS mech. If I'm having to wait longer to get the dmg out, my chances of winning the fight drop quite a bit.

DPS can be misleading if you don't consider the time frame involved. If we're talking about doing 300-400 pts of damage before the PTS build starts to do better, it may not really matter in most engagements.

#11 Lukoi Banacek

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 06:07 PM

View PostSFC174, on 19 August 2018 - 05:50 PM, said:


Over what time period? The DPS of the live server build is substantially better for the first 4 firing cycles. The PTS build doesn't begin to surpass it until the 6th cycle. If I've got to face off with a ballistic/SRM/MRM brawler in close quarters (something that generates 80-100 pt alphas every 4 seconds which is quicker than the staggered cycle time of the 9 MPL build) the battle is decided by the 5th cycle. I'm counting on my more precision dmg to overcome the dmg deficit (20-40 pts) vs the spread build and potentially higher armor if I'm fighting an IS mech. If I'm having to wait longer to get the dmg out, my chances of winning the fight drop quite a bit.

DPS can be misleading if you don't consider the time frame involved. If we're talking about doing 300-400 pts of damage before the PTS build starts to do better, it may not really matter in most engagements.


What you are describing is exactly what PGI is trying to address. Your skirmishing build (pulse focus) currently can outdo the brawler at both the skirmishing range as well as the brawl range. In the PTS, that's been equalized somewhat. Now my concern was that with even shorter ranges on PTS, what role would the pulse family fill? No longer nearly effective as a skirmished, but clearly not meant to out brawl missile/ballistic builds, what are they for.

It's not that anyone should be able to beat more weapons than ghost heat allows for, without a significant break in the firing of groups to stay under the new cap.

#12 Pak Hammond

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Posted 19 August 2018 - 06:09 PM

I ran a number of clan builds through on this, including large/medium pulse boats, UAC 5's/10's and SRM builds.

It felt like balance was in a good place, as I had to think about what I was doing with the lasers, more than the others.

SRM linebacker bomber ran fine, but I still had to watch the heat limit and make sure I was doing the strike and fade routine much better than in live.

One thing that hasn't been touched on so far is MOBILITY and damn it felt good to be in a Timber Wolf that actually could move and twist like it should. Didn't get to run many assaults, as I ran out of time, but some of these were definitely feeling better in twisting and turning for damage roll off and following the lights/mediums that ran around.

Just my thoughts..

#13 Dago Red

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 01:39 AM

View PostSFC174, on 19 August 2018 - 04:25 PM, said:

Well, in the current PTS, AFAICT, the following playstyles are seriously gimped.

1. Clan MPL boats as energy brawlers (2 successive salvos before overheat vs. 4+ for live server)
2. Clan 3+ ERPPC boats (WHK being the most prevalent, can no longer fire off 2x2 PPC salvos)
3. Clan Meta lasvomit (2 HLL 4 ERML - no longer able to alpha without overheat - I know this was one of the targets but it wasn't really the boogeyman that the 2xGauss + lasvomit was)

It also seriously compromises the Clan assaults that run 2xLPL and 6xMPL or ERML even though those mechs are not meta or extremely high alpha (66 alpha), but these are a little more playable than the previous 3.

These playstyles affect a lot of mechs, and while I'm sounding like a broken record, Clan battlemechs with energy hardpoints are the most affected.


GOOD!

#14 SmokedJag

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 03:25 AM

View PostSFC174, on 19 August 2018 - 05:21 PM, said:


Try a MAD-IIC with 9 MPL, max heatsinks (32 I think) and heat skills.

On live server Crimson, firing in groups of 5 and 4, you get to do a staggered alpha 4 times as quickly as cooldown lets you and end up at 98% heat.

On PTS, you do the same thing at you'll overheat at the end of the 2nd 5/4 stagger alpha.

That's a massive change and it takes the burst damage ability in a brawl down to useless levels. This is a very narrowly focused build (useless outside of 450m, requires more face time than ballistic/srm brawlers) and its totally gimped with PTS 2.0

edit - you can also try an 7 or 8 MPL HBK-IIC-A


Good? The test build is trying to reduce instant kills. Playing a Clan heavy with 6-7 is where MPL should be, not crammed into a 50 ton 'Mech with inadequate heat sinks or easily using a two shot burst on an assault.

Those 'Mechs still work, they just have the obnoxiousness reigned in.

#15 SFC174

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 05:35 AM

You guys are funny. I have one person telling me that the MPL builds are better on the new server, another telling me its good that low alpha, high dps, non-meta MPL builds are nerfed, another telling me that nerfing such builds is exactly what's intended. Who do I argue against? LOL

Look, some mechs are energy specific with energy only hardpoints and high hardpoint counts. They have no choice but to run energy only builds. Saying that these mechs shouldn't be able to use all their hardpoints seems kind of silly so I'm not going to address that argument.

The clan MPL builds discussed here are not high alpha compared to the HLL/ERML builds that sparked this whole push by PGI. They are also short range (0 dmg at 480m). They can't alpha on the live server without massive ghost heat issues (GH starts at 6 mpl) and even if they do the alphas are only 49-63 pts, which are not large by today's standards. On the PTS they can't alpha at all, so mission accomplished.

But on the PTS they also lose a tremendous amount of burst capacity before overheating. Why? They weren't meta, they weren't big alpha, and their ability to play their role (close to mid range dps) was already borderline compared to other types of builds.

Look at an MRM50/AC20 Victor vs. the MAD-IIC 9xMPL build. On the live server the Victor has a better range profile, but trades it for a mix of spread and pinpoint. It has a higher alpha (70 with AC20, or you can get 90 with the UAC20 if you want). It can alpha 7 times on the live server before reaching 95%+ heat (6 with the UAC20). On the PTS it can also do 7 alphas before reaching max heat (not overheating) if you transfer one additional node to heatgen.

The Victor is arguably a better CQ brawler even on the live server, especially with armor quirks, but at least the MAD has better hitboxes and can sometimes keep the engagement range in the 300-350m range for a bit while getting out its 4 staggered alphas and maybe taking a torso. But with the MAD overheating after only 2 staggered salvos on the PTS (remember both the MPL and the AC/MRM setup have similar total cycle times) the Victor gains a huge advantage when the MAD starts to have to wait longer than cooldown to fire after the first 8 seconds of engagement. I just don't see how this is a good thing for balance when these sorts of builds lose all sorts of relative performance versus builds they were balanced against before.

And we haven't even gotten into how gimped high energy count lights (IS and Clan) get gimped with the PTS as someone pointed out in another thread. Does this PTS do something to address the meta lasvomit high alpha builds? Yes. But the collateral damage on so many other builds is really serious and really shifts balance in a bad direction.

#16 Toha Heavy Industries

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 06:46 AM

all i know is gauss and ballistic boats kick butt on PTS.

#17 Yeonne Greene

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 07:26 AM

The value of the cMPL builds (whose ghost heat starts *at* 7, not 6) has always been that their sustainable DPS was high and pinpoint, making it good for a mid-close (from ~420 meters on down once skilled up) push. Within the domain of energy weapons on PTS, this is still true, in fact more true than ever.

Where PTS breaks down is:
- 'Mechs that can't bring a lot of DHS without gimping their firepower (i.e. Lights, ballistic boats (IS in particular))
- 'Mechs that can bring cGauss/Gauss/HGauss (they are all stronger than before relative to everything else)
- Giving IS energy boats comparable sustained output to Clan energy boats per range bracket, per 'Mech weight
- Missiles, all of which are tremendously more valuable than before on account of stupendous heat efficiency for their damage

I've said my piece on isDHS vs. cDHS numerous times, now, so I'll leave that out unless somebody asks (TL;DR: Clans need a little more cap, IS need a little more dissipation), but there is certainly room for improvement on the weapons and equipment front. c/Gauss/HGauss heat could probably be doubled, UAC/10 and 20 heat can come down a little bit, and non-SRM missile heat efficiency should be examined. And we still have usability issues with shot velocity on 20-class ACs other than the LB-X, LGauss being weaksauce, and Heavy Medium/Small and Micro lasers being all but completely useless.

#18 SFC174

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 08:07 AM

View PostYeonne Greene, on 20 August 2018 - 07:26 AM, said:

The value of the cMPL builds (whose ghost heat starts *at* 7, not 6) has always been that their sustainable DPS was high and pinpoint, making it good for a mid-close (from ~420 meters on down once skilled up) push. Within the domain of energy weapons on PTS, this is still true, in fact more true than ever.


Sneaky caveat there "within the domain of energy weapons", but relative to the close in sustain alternatives mpls get much, much worse.

#19 Lukoi Banacek

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 08:12 AM

View PostSFC174, on 20 August 2018 - 08:07 AM, said:


Sneaky caveat there "within the domain of energy weapons", but relative to the close in sustain alternatives mpls get much, much worse.


MPL should lose their edge to a more brawl centric build once the distances close. That's part of the reason for the changes. Right now I'm effective well into skirmishing range all the way down to close in brawl. This evens the brawler back up a fair bit, as PGI intends. It doesn't ruin MPL builds heat wise but it does negatively impact them range wise which was one of my concerns.

#20 SFC174

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Posted 20 August 2018 - 08:32 AM

View PostLukoi Banacek, on 20 August 2018 - 08:12 AM, said:

MPL should lose their edge to a more brawl centric build once the distances close. That's part of the reason for the changes. Right now I'm effective well into skirmishing range all the way down to close in brawl. This evens the brawler back up a fair bit, as PGI intends. It doesn't ruin MPL builds heat wise but it does negatively impact them range wise which was one of my concerns.


What edge? They never had one to begin with (how many mpl assaults do you see in Solaris?). But now they are completely gimped. As I pointed out, the Victor doesn't lose anything and it was a better brawler to begin with.





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