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  1. 1. The distance scale. 2. The escalation. World of Warships is less successful than WoT because the game is less compatible to the "feeling" of expected combat for its context compared to WoT. This has to do with its implementation of distance scale ingame. In WG's Total War Arena. Infantry combat can be described as "close quarters", and the intimate and zoomed in control of the combat fits its context as presented. WoT is more "medium range" combat, while the scale of the maps, the engagement and gameplay, all fits its context. However Naval combat is fundamentally about the range, with strategic elements highly incorporated into it; as ships and their whole fleets cannot simply decide to change their position on the world map and do it promptly. A ship's capability is basically reliant primarily on many range-related capabilities such as radar for intelligence, rangefinder efficiency, hardware quality, until carriers came along and offered a qualitative change of threshold to the rules, even rewriting rules for whole fleet compositions. With their current in-game representation, the vast amount of detail in this aspect is lost and barely referenced. Sure we can pretend the gameplay only represents the part where ships have already come into close range with each other, and are in hot combat already. But completely neglecting and not even paying lip service to these other fundamental aspects of naval combat still takes away from the game greatly. The result is this style of gameplay that neither feels fun nor rewarding, and in practice is not. Ships who charge ahead more often than not die a premature death, sometimes barely even benefiting their teammates. But in comparison, TW:A infantry actually have to "engage" to be useful and fun, their skills and design all encourage them to engage in close combat but at their own terms, and the engaged infantry actually do have a chance to survive the battle with glorious results, as fitting the romanticized version of the public's general perspective of them. WoT also allows for gameplay of close-ranged combat by giving tanks armour, cover, and such tools to allow them to happily brawl with each other. But in WoWs, there is no escaping from the damage if you venture forwards, and no in-game mechanics to mitigate these negative aspects, and not enough positive reward for doing so. Even though WG tried to incorporate some of these allowing mechanics in, such as islands. But they work with greatly reduced efficiency and contextual appropriateness, and is not enough to go against the greater tide of the game. Thus we see the semitoxic meta of today. In fact, the very ships themselves struggle to fit into this aspect of gameplay. WG had to purposefully and severely reduce long-range capability across all ship classes to the point where they could not match their historical statistics, in addition, designing maps and force objectives that necessitate close-range combat, but all these accomplished was to take away from the "feel" of a proper expectation from the context with every change. The current CV rework completely does away with the strategic aspect of the gameplay, dealing what may be a final blow to any aspect of distance-feel and large-theatre combat within WoWs. Combat feels neither dire nor heroic, and does not have even the usual amount of tactical depth nor depth from immersion. Aka. it is pointless grind. A very aptly framed piece of criticism against another game featuring WW2 aircraft and combined theatre combat described it as this: "the planes are limited into their tiny little theatre of combat, to the point there they are unable to fly straight for more than half a minute before having to forcibly turn around or fly out of limits. This feels like birds in a cage. The physics of the planes themselves are also horribly simulated, there is no inertia, gravity, air drag and buffering; they feel like driving tanks in the air. The combat itself is also completely unrealistic, with planes suddenly being too close, too far, out of vision and orientation, or taking unrealistic amounts of damage that is either too much or too little." While the criticism could not actually point out exactly what was wrong with the gameplay, nor point out a single debilitating and deciding factor of it, it could still convincingly show that something was terribly wrong with it that was multi-faceted and deeply ingrained. But this is about as much as can be expected from the average player. Just because they cannot completely point out with clarity what is wrong does not mean something is not wrong, nor that it can be and should be ignored. These subtle aspects of the experience of a game do affect the popularity of a game decisively, and are integral parts to what makes the "quality" of a game. I am voicing this concern because I am afraid WG is focusing too much on the technical and micro aspects of this CV rework, while missing out the greater gist of many design problems, which as their past history shows, are their 'achilles heel' in game design, and as history also shows, can lead to dangerous situations where the management of the game, relationship with players, and the future prospects of the game, all take a hit.
  2. I couldn't care less about the rest of the game, but CV I really care about. This post is meant as notes to be reviewed after I see and test the gameplay of new CV scheme. The points I have written here before being influenced and occupied with the new reality of CV, may provide insight that is useful. (Also in case WG is reading this, please let me participate in the test. I haven't played in a while, but I have played CV since beta, was briefly amongst the top listed CV players on EU, (and the only one listed to be using an AS Hakuryu). It means I played for teamwork and utility support, which is sorta new a concept to some ppl even now. Also clan, lots of other ships, etc. Shamelessly. For everyone else, I hope this encourages you to finish reading my long post. Sorry. You might want to bring a highligher. Ok nevermind I set everything to bold so you can read it easier.) So. 1. Points on Hypothetical controls for new CV scheme 2. Points on Hypothetical mechanics of new CV assets 2. Other Game Mechanics that may need to be updated for the new scheme 3. AA and air related Match-level changes 4. Other Game-level changes that can be considered as improvements, but far away from practically implemented 5. What a rework means and good luck. (1.) I leave this part to WG to figure out during the procedural testing - And how to implement it into console controls. [ AI ]: a point to bring up is AI-assisted, or semi-automated controls. Which will be potentially very helpful for consoles. - Some of these can simply be camera customization options and such dummy options, which players can preset to their preference, even depending on different phase of a single action such as a strike. (The new BF series allows customization of zoom levels and angles per class, per gun, per sight) - Actual AI usage can revolve around assisted control options to help with managing your planes such as "Emergency spread" , "Return to CV at will", "Split", "Counter Air" (some of those strike planes have machine guns too), Panic release (panic strike all), if system allows for such depth of gameplay and soft simulation - On the panic-strike, a good idea even with current level of projected depth / simulation sophistication. It means all planes panic (panicked is an adjective, but also potentially a serious in-game status effect now) release their loadouts at any available target within imminent strike range ASAP and then getfo of there. You will deplete your whole sortie blob at once but maybe it's worth it? Doesn't happen instantly. As is all strikes. (2. ) Players can customize in-game loadout per sortie (one resupply and sending out of a 'blob' of planes). - This is due to the large selection of ordinance available, including smokes, flares, AP/HE/light/heavy/precision-dive/level-drop/guided bombs, anti-submarine charges, rockets, shallow(quick-arm)/normal/deep-water torpedoes, chaff, etc. - Different 'hard' loadouts (selected in the tier tree) will limit some choices - This will force players to preemptively plan their strike capability and target, and allow CV gameplay to be more strategic, intellectual, varied, and precise - It will also alleviate the sometimes immense difference in strike capability between nations - Fighters take up sortie slots. See below. Maximum plane count of sortie will depend on tier and hanger of CV (the blob of planes the player controls per resupply) - Due to large size of higher tier CV flight wings, a default minimum number of fighters will take up plane slots in the sortie, depending on nation, tier, etc, lessening total strike planes so CV strikes will not be op while maintaining a guise of historical accuracy of hanger sizes, this can change depending on hard loadout - Larger sorties can strike multiple times depending on 'release per strike' which varies by nation, CV, loadout, etc. but one strike at a time (as also limited by new control+camera scheme). This lessens alpha-strike potential akin to old style CV having to strike one squad at a time, and makes consistent AA matter more / give more time for reactions - See (AA mechanics) in section 3 for how 'consistent AA' can be balanced Maximum release and formation per strike will depend primarily on nation and wing formation for the CV - Formation per strike can also vary depending etc. Fighters - More fighters is more AA, but AA is also reworked to be more consistent and less about outright damage - Fighters take up precious strike plane slots, with a minimum amount required per sortie - Fighters can suppress enemy strikes and lessen accuracy / effectiveness, even kill (down) planes as normal AA does - Friendly fighters will try to keep enemy fighters busy and lessen suppression effect - Fighters will also simulate strafing surface AA to lessen suppression from surface-ship AA sources - Some special fighters can even carry light bombs / flares / smoke / night vision / radar and other scientific equipment / light rockets / chaff etc. - Long range and high altitude fighters can engage enemy planes even before strike phase (while they are circling at high altitude queued up by the 'release size', as strikes now happen one at a time) - Fighters are AI operated, escorting your plane blob similarly to how scout fighters patrol around their ships. Strikes do not happen instantly. - Besides the wind-up time in which planes fly to their target and manage their aim, the actual strike of some strike types / depending on options / will also happen over a brief time period instead of instantly. - Because all bombs hitting at once, together, is a sort of an alpha strike, and alpha strikes are baaad. - It is also completely unrealistic, uncinematic, unimmersive, unbelievable, which are all baaaaad. - You want the CV to take some time in the action too. Trust me it is satisfying and rewarding. - Some (depending on options) will still allow instant strikes. Yes it is an option (feature) now. Probably some elite historical based squad (which you damn well make into the keypoint of a happy occasion and event) with the training to pull that off. See I instantly turned something mundane, if bad, into something special and good in reverse. Some ppl will disagree because they are humorless and don't like magic tricks. (3.) AA can suppress and stun, instead of current 'damage-until-kill' system. - Suppression gradually increases "panic" and lessens strike efficiency / accuracy - Stun causes critical mechanical failures in planes, which may or may be fatal, not to mention interrupt strikes in progress for that plane, stun is gradually built up from suppression - Stun can happen again and again until a plane is very much failure and very much dead. Then it is officially downed. - Note a failured plane is more susceptible to further stuns as it is simulated that it cannot dodge as well / pilot is injured / instruments malfunctioning / etc. Exact maths will be precise but done by the devs so players won't have to. - A combination of certain stuns (failures) can also result in instant critical damage if you are unlucky (engine fire + fuel leak, anyone? or just the good old "omg they blew off my right wing") - This is actually quite similar to the system of another certain Wargame franchise by Eugene Systems, except they calculate damage separately, and there are no "stuns/failures" that result in instant critical damage, like War Thunder. As this means a perfectly fine plane can be 'alpha-striked', pardon my term. Alpha-strikes are bad. - Panic can be alleviated by pilot training, however so that is implemented (pilot as officers with own mini skill trees pretty please, I mean even Battlefield franchise in introducing progression trees for every single gun). Panic decreases with success (moral boost) and decreases by time (calming down). AA efficiency can vary by angle / protocols - Angle is straightforward. Every AA and its effective angle is simulated. Even its height angle effectiveness. - Protocols means whether their firing pattern (as ordered by the officers and enabled by AA gunner crew training)(cough more skill trees cough) is adapted to handle an incoming flight of torpedo bombers, or imminent strike of dive bombers. - This firing pattern, naturally, simulates where and how they are firing. If their firing pattern matches the strike type, its efficiency will increase. Drastically. - Firing pattern is usually handled automatically, but can be forced manually. Some firing patterns are limited depending on nation / ship type / AA armament selection etc. Its info will still be shown in-game UI as a little additional info bar (amongst other UI improvements / additions). - AA surviveability is to be reworked (mostly increased). AA can now be repaired. - AA cross-firing, teamwork, and ship angles (covering each other) actually matters now. As is altering protocols and some other tricks for some really high level synchronized play (competitive). - Quality of AA mounts including dual purpose and special type AA loadout (e.g. Rockets, Proximity shells, Type-3 artillery, Barrage Balloons, Incendiary) is all to be worked into the new system with as much soft simulation as possible. Those electronic AA fire control systems actually matter. - As is losing your fire control towers. Yes, add them on as modules. The artillery ones too. Historical accuracy and all that. More simulation yeh. Pilot progression system. - You know ppl will mod their national heroes / waifus into the pilot officer portraits. This is a good thing. It also saves you the copyright fees and legal procedures to actually (officially) use real national heroes. - Lead pilot of every strike release (depending on limit) is always an Ace. This Ace is always the last to be downed (due to magic, and gameplay balance needs). This Ace is the pilot with a skill tree. - Some skills affect the whole strike squadron. Some skills only affect the Ace. - Skills can be very creative and varied, not to mention limited Aces can have limited skills. (Not every youtuber wants to be a captain.) Creative skill example: Ace goes berserk after seeing all his comrades die. Temporarily gains incredible combat stats at cost of burnout after a brief time period. - Collect Aces! So many successful games (mostly mobile) revolve around collection theme. Not actually a serious suggestion. - Ace can radio little speech bubbles during game. Provides extra notification on status and some other info, which is both fun and useful. Can be turned off / customized. - Historical Aces can also have limited plane deco and models. Why stop at ships skins? Overall systems should be more slower but steadier paced, both air and surface combat. This is relevant for all sections. ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ (4.)Far, away, over the rainbow ... nothing. is. bolded. None-serious section. Rework flood, fire, citadel mechanics. - Citadels are overly punishing. That is bad. - Fire is too rigid, thus unimmersive unbelievable and can be improved. - Flooding causes flat damage. Seriously that is as far from a soft simulation of flooding as possible. - I recommend you check out one of my old posts for ideas on how to rework these aspects. (Hint: Flooding acts like poison. Fire varies primarily by ship class, and damage control mechanic is reworked to accommodate, with both passive and active effects. Oh also you can flood magazines to prevent exploosions. Add ship damage simulation. - Mainly want ships to list when flooded and damaged. And some other cinematic improvements. - Can affect gameplay too. It'll be a bonus. It'll be like Christmas come true to see WG actually try to make their game into a naval simulator. - Note a lot of damage simulation, if historically speaking, cannot depart from a discussion of armour and ship design. Which will vary by ship. Which is like, a lot more complicated than Krupp and Pen value by angle of armour. A lot more. - Some "soft" aspects, historically, also affected ship ... surviveability, so to speak. Who knew British propellant was more flammable than Germans? And thin deck armour didn't help. Thin deck armour by itself did not make their ships a living fireworks box. But Thin deck armour with poor flash protection and propellant handing practice (those rapid firing guns don't rapid fire by themselves) make for some interesting chain effects. Also armoured carriers. Hint: carriers hate fire. Some more than others. BUT was it just the fire? (vapors) So much depth if you want to go in. Ship stability while partially flooded. Torpedo protection design. All can be simulated. All can be meaningful. - It'll be like Christmas, World Peace, Birthday, Jesus, and lots of things all come together if WG actually tried to make their game into a naval celebrator. - Someone, someday, will make that though, make no doubt. Might be an AI instead of human devs, because singularity is nigh. Yes you can some of what I'm smoking. Ok I'll stop this bullet point. - WAIT one more thing. Ships can install dummy smoke launchers and coloured lights to make them look like their innards are burning to a crisp, while all they did was turn on stage-quality special effects. More war-like info sharing. Not all info of an enemy ship is instantly available on site. Sometimes more info (intelligence) gathering and better vision coverage is required. - I am 99% sure that very few captains if any at all during the actual war could distinguish the exact "HP" or whatever that is of a ship at 28 km, but which we can do, instantly, at a press of alternative interface button. - Now, with rework (improvement) of the vision system, the info-system linked to vision-system can also be reworked. - This will matter for subs, if they are ever introduced. Even modern nuclear subs cannot outright distinguish surface conditions, nigh, even receive/intercept purposefully directed surface communication sometimes, while underwater. If they use the same old info system we use now it will be bad (in short). - Adds tactical and strategic gameplay depth. Overhaul vision system. (Includes radar) - Recommend threshold-based intelligence system. Having vision of a target will then be but a certain band within the whole array of possibilities. Other points on the array can be "silhouette, ship (type) unknown" "rough position shown, but updated every few seconds instead of consistently and instantly" "rough direction known, but cannot distinguish between if island or massive Japanese conning tower, also wrecking havoc on my radar" (Yes, can even hide actual landmass and map features on "simulated procedurally generated unbefore seen maps", a luxury possibly reserved for themed competitive events only). - Recommend secondary "intelligence" based game mechanic that allows for calling in ... favours. Call it the "escalation" system. This system will work similarly to the concept of "gathering resources" in RTS games. So DDs maintaining stealth to provide vision will still feel they are useful (they are). The more they see, the more interactions both friend-foe and foe-foe they see, the more points. Almost as if spotting generated experience points, and intelligence was soft-linked to spotting-based experience points amount. More randomization and sigma. - WAIT sigma is not always bad. But instead of the fixed sigma nowadays, imagine a stabilized and weighted then slightly variable sigma. - Depending on ship modules (fire control) and ship status (alive is usually a good start). Depending on skills taken. Depending on atmospheric weather status. Depending on ammunition types (and how some nations made better/less reliable ammo for some guns). Depending on how overloaded (top-heavy) your DD is and how it is struggling to weather those typhoon waves. Depending on whether your ship is listing and turning to a certain angle. Depending on how much time you allowed the plotting room to generate a result (very slightly simulated artillery circle variance, unless electronic room, but even then). Depending on target status (current example is camo 4%. But can also be vision threshold, allied artillery results sharing on comms, spotter plane feedback, etc.) - Randomization is just a little soft randomization, to add more variety, alleviate boredom, and introduce just a little excitement to the game. Its all to be worked for more fun, still fair, less punishing confidentiality for players, and just good design directions. Multi-sector modular maps. (BF series use large maps which it only opens up one contained sector at a time, depending on the game mode / stage of the game objective progress, but the whole stretch of the map is designed.) - Skirmish, or melee games, can use a specific section of the map that is cleverly divided, marked and strewn with objectives in a way that is still fair and fun, yet can be varied and even semi-different per game. Takes some clever map designing. Very clever map designing. - CV one sector behind. As a potential solution for "what happens to my CV". For BF style "tug of war" games only. - Map-zone based matchmaking. - If in-depth weather simulation is a thing, then a big difference between tropical and arctic maps is to be expected. Sandbanks, glare, and coral versus iceberg, freezing, and ocean currents. Players may prefer to bring different loadouts, even whole different ships, depending on themed map packs / the few maps available for that "zone". A soft solution to "I want this type of game but I get this map again holy fffffff" - Too much wind for CV planes to take off. Optioners rejoice. (Until they realize some missions / rewards softly nudge them to play a healthy variation modes and maps) - Immersion. Themes. Seasonal Events for certain zones of maps. Now you can balance a seasonal events and your halloween ships without having to take the whole enormous game into account every time. Also, premiums-as-star modes. See one of my old posts. All you need to know is that it will help sell premiums while still being fair for non-premium users (at least include a non-premium but high tier ship within each theme rotation, for one, and voila). New map mechanics. - The aforementioned corals, icebergs (floating), sandbanks, some ships can pass over shallows, other ships simply can't, some ships can brute force through corals (with matching and satisfying crunching sounds), ice affects torpedoes, etc. Lots of room for creativity and make players feel good about their ship. - Undersea volcano eruption event. Throw a wrench in someone's gameplay (hopefully not), just make it fun then. Counts as randomization. - Probably more but I forgot. I'm sure players and devs can come up with more. Maybe I should consult my old content, or the oldest content of all, the "notes-cronomicon" (80k) Multi-tiered games, multi-phased games. - Pretty straight forward. Imitate BF series for examples for the phase part. - For tier part, an example is imagine a scouting phase where light ships only and escort carriers only participate. Then comes the main fleet with a higher tier flagship. This means multi-tier is inseparable from and linked to the concept of multi-phase. - Inter-tier balancing can be accomplished if it is planned for during the overhaul of the crucial game mechanics sections of vision, damage effects, etc. to help balance ship capability more towards the system, the environment, the actual gameplay and their choices, and away from too much depending on the ship itself which can be overpowered. If more scoring and match tallying mechanics are devised, those can help to by "paper" balancing ships instead of by raw capability (higher tier or bigger ship both worth more and loses more points), etc. - Polish and player experience friendlyness is a key part here. For instance, make the scouting phase shorter, or any occasion where a smaller ship might unceremoniously get alpha-killed, be less consequential, less impacting on the player, aka. make that phase shorter. Maybe allow for a respawning of some lesser ships later. - Technology and ingenuity will make this happen. Imagine this, I call it the "fate" system: on two different sectors of the map, it is told to players battles are taking place. The outcome of these battles affect future scenario building and map seeding. But how do you sync two completely different matches, then "mash them together" later, without imposing unimmersive time limits, or unsmooth integration? Simple, you don't. Instead of marking and linking battles together at their inception, mark them at their ending. So it doesn't matter how many battles start and finish, as long as battles are continuously starting and finishing, which is surely to happen across a server cluster. This gives the illusion that a fleet of players had allies battling partly for their sake all along, and now they finally come together as a team for the next stage or even the grand finale of that chain of multi-phased games. This is true showmanship, game design. Procedurally generated storytelling. "Multiplayer single-player-campaigns" (already happening a little in Monster Hunter World). - That was just a basic example. More advanced examples of the "fate" system such as how CV aerial reinforcements work cross-sector, mid-match reinforcements, "intelligence" modified reinforcements, system usage to enhance seasonal events and tournaments, even subtly matching friends and clan members together, by putting them into game modes that may sync game end times and result in them getting to enjoy the next game together without purposeful queueing, all are things of ingenuity, technology, showmanship and hosting/thinking for the players, and game design. Mentor systems for this game. "War modes" for clans. Everything links together. More gamification. Make everything integrated. - This part is sorta learned from Azur Lane. In how nothing you do in that game is technically wasted. Yes, a lot of it is RNG and thus potentially all of it is wasted, but that's now how human psychology perceives it. But all of it is meaningful for building up a player's collection of ships and fleets, and especially their enjoyment of what ships and fleets they have. Yes the skins are part of that. - I'll be straight. Basically, translated to WoWs, it means integrating all the loot and reward systems. So you don't use a separate system for containers. You don't use a completely separate system for each ship and captain and match. Free exp is a low-level example of cross-system integration. We want more of those, as those are always perceived by the players' psychology as rewarding, meaningful, and if they are implemented in a smooth, highly compact and cohesive experience (seriously, no one actually perceives that long wait before each container/crate as rewarding and tantalizing, it's just frustrating after about the 5th time). And yes getting a massive influx of resources and loot from ex. start of every ranked season where your 'kept ranks' dump their rewards on you all at once, should be a good thing, yet in this game it is trivialized as "oh more meaningless, trivial, more of the same resources of which nothing is special and now they just go sit in my warehouse now, oh what did I get I barely know I just clicked on them all at once" which is bad. It's not just about adding a long wait and receiving animation to these things either, it's about (learned from Azur Lane) the satisfying experience of mashing "collect completed mission reward" button in the rewards screen, then instantly re-dumping your received resources into immediate, useful, active stuff such as building your next ship, improving equipment, training your waifus, etc. at your choice a logic train of player agency and interaction. Instead of just "sit in warehouse/armoury which I can never view and everything in there is just arbitrary numbers that are meaningless as long as they are larger than 1"? - Ofc even the Azur Lane mobile phone model is not perfect nor, I admit, perfectly suitable as-is in both execution and concept for WoWs, but we learn from what we can. - You don't want to hear what I learned from Kancolle. Hint, lots of Japanese stuff. Not all easily explainable, nor absolutely relevant to WoWs. But I would like to think I am ... er.. informed. - Ok Ok fine. Just think of it this way. Instead of basing everything on business and market research etc., product ideas especially logic-based products such as art, games, etc. should always be driven by beauty, hope, and the best of higher things in life. Also, what is art, what I think gaming means to players as a person, and lots of deep stuff. See? Told you it wouldn't make much useful sense without lots of auxiliary explanation. I didn't even clarify what in the world is a "logic-based". Themes. Seasonal Events. Premium. - I think I indirectly covered a lot of related points in the above points already. Does it actually matter, whether CV is RTS or some other style and theme? -Yes. Short answer. -Yes. Because in changing something huge like this, some things are gained, some things are lots, the overall personality of the game is changed forever, and certain directions of improvement and possibilities are forever closed while others are potentially opened. There are net changes in certain parts of the personality, soul, of the game. Differently styled art make different statements to its meaning, a game is no different. Some basic things are how serious it is, how expansive it is, which aspects of the immersion it focuses upon, how it places the player, etc. - This is why even though, even the devs themselves cannot quite express it, but this looming unease which cannot solely explained by the business risks they are taking while doing a overhaul such as this. Because these are harsh and drastic changes. They do care about the game, since the beginning, (I'm good at observing this kind of stuff), and by now do resonate with it a lot. This does change the very soul of the game itself, and much is lost and much is gained, it is humbling and profoundly sad a thing and many more, all at the same time. Last bit of rambling - So don't belittle ppl on forums trying to express and draw attention to some issue they feel or indirectly glimpse, and suddenly and briefly made sense in a moment of clarity. The sense was true and always there, they just can't quite pinpoint it, express it, or make a conclusion of it, nor frame it into a version that makes universal sense for everyone. I've seen quite a lot of ppl and examples of this. Devs are people too, they are not immune. Be nice to each other. How you behave to anyone at any arbitrary moment does betray little details (like I said, I am good enough at this, as necessity ... sigh, if I really try) of your qualities, what kind of person you are, how you think and what you feel and whether you are worthy of any amount of trust and expectation. Extra: Games are a personal, romantic thing. Much can be said here. - I'll give one point here. Games are alternative personality players engage in every time they game. There could be reasons why they'd want to do something like this which is potentially meaningless. What kind of experience players desire in can be explained by one point which states art is about the ridiculous and out-of-place things in real life. Naked brutality of force. Injustive. Extremities. There is both good art and bad art, but it is still art. But back to point, players engaging in a completely fantasy world, in tandem and in mutual concensus, for something potentially relatively completely meaningless, is in itself an extremity and outrageous thing. Art is sacred. By far extension, the act of gaming itself is sacred, and should be treated as such. Devs should hold their job, as ideally any job, as sacred. This all adds up to how games should be created with the respect and care it warrants and deserves, like any other respectable crafts. - So what kind of game players like? Why doesn't commercial push-based endeavors just work, even with good products? Because this is what games are. An artistic, qualitative, romantic thing. Games can never substitute a player's personality, no that would be outright madness. But they are alternative personalities players engage in, as substitute for things impossible in real life, as something outrageous to ritualistically compensate for whatever reason (religion counts too) they want to and need to. - So what kind of game would make a player want to devote themselves (or an image of themselves) into, to see how it would look like on the other side, and become a part of them in reverse? The kind of meaningful, carefully and dutifully created, game with a soul. A game about something final, dire, yearning, outrageous, beautiful, uniquely singular, and romantic. That is the kind of thing that propaganda also uses, but the point is, it facilitates immediate and dedicated 'action'. Because it generates dire, final worldviews on which 'trust' is immediately established and ordered to action. So it's about trust. Trust is a powerful thing. Will. Belief. Euphoria. Passion. etc. Good, active things to have in a game, amongst more, and not by chance. Because it makes sense behind it. - So games are about creating an alluring setting for an alternative personality of the player. Now, would players want to engage in a little personal hell that involves grinding ships over and over again with little meaningful lore, to meaninglessly to tedious and mediocre combat again and again in a semi-toxic setting, to hurt others with aggression and toxicity in a nearly zero-sum game and depressing economy and progression system, and even risk tainting, bring in, substituting with lesser or even negative variations of their soul, memories, personality, perceptions and knowledge, even just a bit, the parts with memory, knowledge, and respect for the actual historical lore this game claims to base itself upon, but which mostly neglects and only mentions almost as a side note, such that time and resources are wasted? NO. NO. NO. NO. NO. - Note that best practice on how to make a player spend money can be achieved with much less complexity, such as appealing to their lesser and darker parts of e.g. "p2w nao". Ofc generally good games can still received money, in fact there are many ways to do this. But which practice is better? Well, one is certainly easier, but I direly hope the developers at least believe one is not necessarily better than the other, even if for practical reasons they have to act as if one is. I hope they also know not all developers "act" this way. Perhaps I may be biased because my salary is not based on a game I'm making which needs to bring in a lot of money, in short. But meh. Already said too much. (5.) If I wrote this in a normal way instead of in bullet-points it would've been a ludicrously long post. I sorta know better by now. - But it is still sorta long. Er, scratch that. It is completely out of hand. Again. Anyways I just want to wish the devs and players good luck, good job regardless of outcome, be brave and keep improving WoWs, and to not let down this incredible opportunity to make the game better. - You know I could've spouted a lot of pseudo-philosophical stuff here too but I withheld myself. I'll stop here for now.
  3. Let's be honest, as much as WG hates us discussing other games, they are losing a lot of players to these "other games". This is because some of these games are simply better than WoWs. There are features, design decisions, systems and assets, whole franchises which were done better, or just happen to be more alluring, than WoWs. Sometimes, we will also observe practical changes in concept in the gaming industry, either through direct changes applied to games, or being talked about by people within the industry. These decisions, good or bad, also provide crucial information (especially if follow-up data is available) upon which insight can be harnessed to better WoWs. This thread is simple. If you see an example of game design and decision-making happen, and somehow it sheds light upon a concept which compares with WoWs, post it here. A lot of times a single example or two are not enough to warrant a full on writeup of a theory, but even when inference is impossible, the examples themselves are still valuable, as are player attitudes and thoughts. Past threads in WoWs forums (including international forums) which also do the akin of comparative analysis can be linked here as well. It would be a shame to let past work be needlessly forgotten.
  4. Edit: TL;DR I can't believe ppl are still taking me seriously/assume I am very serious. We all know nothing we write on forums matters for crap. Perhaps there is some truth in the things I say, but not with the effectiveness I can manage to write it with. There is nothing friking wrong with WoWs. Ever. Dream on. WoWs suffers in its holding power of players due to awkwardly designed social interaction. This may be the reason the "great player diaspora" happened. Social interaction is great for a games' endurance. I have come to see that games which excel in their design of "social interaction" as a correlation between their success and popularity and endurance, while games with "antisocial" or badly designed social interaction systems suffer and tend to end in failure. For instance, the most popular MMOs, wow, FFXIV, and GW, all placed utmost care to foster a "social sphere" with unique characteristics, franchise-level strength, in their games. EVE online has another unique take on this. These games as a result enjoy holding power and endurance from well-designed social interactions. A comparative good example is the recently popular PUBG and Fortnite style games. While these games have no traditional social sphere, in a sense there is still much social interaction going on. Due to the effects of "agency", players can feel an "almost-realistic" degree of immersiveness while playing that game, though manifest in different form, as "outward social flaunting". And to some extents there are modes which stress teamwork. Teamwork, more traditionally represented in MOBA style games, is another example of highly effective "good" social interaction design. "Social interaction" can thus also be interpreted as "social immersiveness", stressing the "agency" factor instead of responsive socializing. Players may find social immersiveness by being in a community for a wholly single-player game, connected by the franchise itself (e.g. single-player hardcore simulation / professional tech-building games, which have 0 integrated social interaction whatsoever unless you are mechanophile), or by exercising "simulated social agency" towards in-game assets (many japanese games, e.g. Kancolle). KC is also a good example of community-based social immersion through fan creations. In other words even single player games are not necessarily antisocial, and benefit from well-designed social interaction. However, "social immersiveness" is not ubiquitously possible in any form. Some forms are "antisocial", granting negative effects. Situations which may grant negative effects are input without feedback, 'empty without echo'. And the presence of hostile feedback without corresponding positive buffer fallback points. Thus "antisocial" can be interpreted as the "lack" of non-defunct social feedback loops, or the presence of negative feedback loops / mismatched feedback loops diminishing positive forms of agency. And not necessarily the lack of responsive real-human feedback, nor the lack of traditional social interaction, as commonly interpreted. Developer-written qualitative content can still count as real-human feedback, while "social immersiveness" hinges more on the absence of net negative structures or not exceeding amount of the positive, to "draw" players in, and not the other way around. Put as simply as possible, it means the need for the existence of a sphere for collective social interpretation, and not the absence of. As you can see, the need for "responsiveness" does not come high in this model, though it is a bonus. ______ In brief, to not be antisocial, there must be a vehicle to carry the collective social interpretations of the audience. A non-empty echo space, or reflection space, for in-ward agency projections from players. It need merely reflect, not respond. (though that is always a bonus) ______ WoWs suffers in this sense because the game has no coherent social collective. It is in some sense a singleplayer game without a community sphere. It also draws in endless agency devotion without feedback, or even echos, because this part is mute and never designed into it. Thus like a bad feedback error, agency is still being endlessly input, with nothing to output. (WoWs lacks a good core of meaningful content. It's historical context could have served as one, or a focus on engineering, or just deep, complex mechanics gameplay. Or excessively beautiful graphics. Just something romantic, immersive, beautiful, fun. Anything.) - There is no (deeper) teamwork. - There is no deeper "social representation" as all ships are more or less non-customizeable. And playing a specific ship does not 'say anything about you (except maybe Asashio and radar CA). - Whatever social connections are brief if non-existent. They last no longer than a single match. - All existing social structures, community, clan, all exist for the sole purpose of the game, and not otherwise. (This is a bit complicated to explain, but think of it this way: if the game is socially empty, its dependencies are also 'technically' empty, especially if its dependencies are solely hinged on this single factor) - Toxicity is still prevalent, in a "sorry it's not personal, its just business" kind of way. (I only want to farm, sry had to clicker-nuke you). "It's just business" is as I understand it, a derogatory term. This is negative feedback. - (and) Players are also forced to impose this "it's just business" on other players as well. Naturally it's not gonna sit well with most ppl. Not everyone is Most people are not antisocial, unfeeling monsters. A bad example of defunct social sphere design is Elder Scrolls online. They think that by simply adding co-op to a single-player game, that makes it multiplayer. No, multiplayer is much more complex than that ... and because they shoehorned in a multiplayer, what little cohesive singleplayer charm there was also got destroyed. Thus, with nothing going for it, it was not popular. I had once criticized WoWs as a "singleplayer" game. This is because its progression, its revelations, its enjoyment, is all inherently single-player. It is inherently a single player's struggle within the game. Player 1 vs WoWs. Just because it is "multiplayer" in a sense, does not mean it has all the "infrastructure" to support this kind of collective sphere. Some may argue WoWs has flags, camos, achievements, premiums, emotes No No No. Those are but "needless, sometimes excessive logistics" that are not even QoL or anything meaningful. Kancolle was a superb design precisely because it had no excessive "logistics" to interfere with its core, meaningful content. WoWs not only suffers from a weak core, it also has a plethora of logistics. Its resource-based progression system is itself one huge logistic. "but WoWs relies on that to make money" that's the point, in the past, excessive logistics could be tolerated due to the infancy of game design philosophies / techniques, but nowadays anything short of "very very polished" is not even "acceptable" in a highly competitive consumer stage. (Oh btw WoWs doesn't even have much going for emotes. Radio banter is not. Ship horn is. Flares would be better. Most ppl use cursing in chat.) (Definition: Think of "Logistics" as what huge, tedious supply chain one has to set up in order to get their prized, shiny prestige warship into the battle. Analogy aptly named. You don't want too much logistics interfering with the core, meaningful content. Some logistics is good for immersion, and is itself meaningful, "setting up" the scene better, I mean, ships do need supply after all. But there are fine lines drawn in the sand at golden angles. How to draw those fine, beautiful lines, are what designers get payed for.) ______ How to fix all this: Hell if I know. I was busy analyzing how to ergonomically optimize CV controls scheme based on "micropulses" of attention a player would perform while playing CV. But that was all assuming CV would stay RTS, which WG says otherwise, so it's all out the window. SO How to fix all this: Hell if I care. I just wanted to whine on forums like I usually do. (BTW most of you will think this is the TL;DR but it's not. Though it's not as if I could persuade you otherwise anyways. So we'll just continue with that joke hm.) It's just, it's not as simple as problem as "players need to be showered in more general econ stuff so we need to be more generous". It's not a simple, shallow problem at all. WoWs has a deep cancer, and it suffers.
  5. KarmaQU_EU

    “CV” —

    The Asashio situation is set, no more good to be done further fussing over it. Time to focus on the only thing I truly care about, CVs. It would be best that we write whatever we want to write, and say whatever we want to say, this time, before WG finishes the wip on the CV rework. For once they finish this rework it is unlikely they will do another. The purpose of this thread is two-fold. One is to gather ideas from the forums on what we should examine whilst considering this CV rework. From what perspectives, using what methods, asking what questions, gathering what data and insights, would an analytical approach to the intention of CV rework benefit from. Two is to gather personal ideas on what is the most definitive, representative, singular and final view of CV you hold. What is your version of the definitive CV experience. What in your imagination is the concept of the CV. What is your most symbolic experience in the old CVs. What do you hope for in the new. What will you carry on in memory to the new. I myself will be preparing a writeup akin to a mini-version of notes. It will be subject to some of the same standards, but will be exclusively focused on CV in context of this rework. It will be a bit tasking so I should probably not waste any more attention cracking jokes and ranting sarcasm for a while. Seeing which aspects of the CV the people on the forums believe is important will also help me in defining my own plan and approach to the concept, while reading on the experiences and memories of fellow CV players will possibly provide insight and inspiration. Thus I would like to invite you to please kindly post your “last words” for CVs, and your “final say” on this concept, in this thread. I personally wish this collective memory of CVs to be exempt from meaner, rougher thoughts, as well as dismissive treatment in its characterisation, if possible. We need not patronise nor objectify WG in this either; as ideally concepts are just concepts, pure and ideal. Remember the CVs as what not we had managed to make of them, but as what they deserve to be, and what their portrayal carries collectively and ideally, timeless and final.
  6. The problem of toxicity in WoWs is that two sides have conflicting interests, only one side may satisfy those interests, while the other side loses out, and that these interests are extremely clearly conveyed with little room for err. Imagine WoWp, but instead of both teams having the same composition, same objectives, and same gameplay, thus having conflicting and non-mutually-compatible interests, instead it happens in a way more resembling a scenario during the Battle of Britain: One side is mainly bombers, with their objective being to "strike ground targets (and maybe survive while doing so)", while the other side is mainly interceptors and fighters, to "strike these air targets and (thus indirectly) protect ground targets". The importance is that while their interests are in direct conflict, their objectives are only in indirect conflict. Theoretically, it is possible for both sides to win, or both sides to lose, or even to be in an inconclusive state in which the terms of win and lose are indeterminate. Translated in-game, this means no hurt feelings, no saltiness, no toxicity, and even the possibility of qualitative (instead of quantitative) tallying of scores (which, thus far, has been nay unachievable in known competitive game design). The possibility of simply enjoying the process of it all too, rather than an outcome. Should a game system that is balanced, fair, resilient and deep be designed to utilize this strength, it will open a new era of possibility in multiplayer game design, and game design in general. No TL;R. TL;DR use your imagination for the rest. Someone told me to try letting the forum use their own imagination instead of detailing out everything for them which no one reads anyways.
  7. I myself never played Battlefield 1, so it came as a surprise to me when I came upon a youtube video showing it had controllable ships, and saw how much naval action there was in that game. Generalizing from previous experience of Battlefield titles, I thought that BF1 would at most only have a scripted and stationary ship you could spawn in and shell the coastline with, similar to the role of the AC130 in previous games and that huge airship they used in the trailers: scripted, uncontrollable, and easily targeted/destroyed for balance purposes. However, it seems these boats and ships were designed to be manually driven like tanks and aircraft in the other Battlefield games. Their main objective is naturally to deal with the other (similarly op) vehicles in the game. While the balance itself has much to be desired, as was in previous titles as well, and there exists youtube videos showing skilled players getting such high killstreaks with planes that they set off the anti-cheat alerts in the system, one can say the Battlefield series was never really an exemplary example of "balance". Instead, as is my purpose for showing this video, there are still other parts it does well, and that we can perhaps draw inspiration from for comparison to WoWs. Note, I probably don't talk about everything possible for every sequence, so if you happened upon another good point while watching feel free to give some of your own thoughts on it in the comments. Firstly, there is this sequence: We can see from the video, the host demonstrating bombing a destroyer with an airship. This was possible because he spawn-camped, and the destroyer spawned right under him, as he explains before the sequence. As I said, "balance" ... but back to topic. Firstly, during an earlier phase of this video, he demonstrated that airships have a higher speed than destroyers and can outrun them (realistic), but that they also have very high fidelity of control, and can wiggle and turn as nimbly as the nimblest destroyers (unrealistic). However, this makes the bombing in the video easily possible, even for noobs and players bad at control. While WoWs is also relatively easy to control, it is far from being noob friendly. This is not just because some of the more complex theorycrafting in the game like Krupp and Sigma ... which WG community staff say only about 1% players care about. It's about supposedly common knowledge like stealth mechanics, or AP vs HE targeting. (Which their presentation in game is straightforward enough, but no amount of minimap circles showing your stealth radius or loading screen tips which nobody ever reads can actually teach you to utilize that stealth. As for AP versue HE, where to aim at enemy ships for AP vs HE, which ships you are more likely to do damage to with AP versus HE, which ships you can or cannot pen ... these things vary even by tier range, much less by ship type.) There are just so many pitfalls noob players may find themselves frustrated by, without clear means to rectify or insure against. While I'm not arguing to make the game like Battlefield, no stealth, no shell type, easy handling e.g. an actual arcade game, I am still repeating that it is very important to attempt to make this game as intuitive in mechanics, and straightforward an experience as possible. Otherwise we may lose players simply due to frustration at the game, or frustration due to suffering at the hands of other players. (Which in this game, is quite noticeable and impacting ... just goes to tell there is a long way to go to make this game "soft logic", "intuitive", and then "enjoyable".) People get to fool around, play around, as is the purpose of a game, in Battlefield. They enjoy themselves. Also, ppl playing BF games don't really argue over "realism" "historical accuracy" and the type. Yet, they don't resort to denigrating comments such as "it's but an arcade game". This might seem like a miracle to WG ppl, but indeed, few games out there ever have to face this specific line of criticism ... WG has driven themselves into a corner with the "image" and "contextual claim" of their game, and has to live to high expectations, while other games can just add fictional elements and gamified and stylistic artistic alteration as needed, and the more stylized and expressive those are, the more they are even lauded for, something completely unthinkable for WoWs. We had better find a way to make the "WoWs impression" work into a benefit, otherwise if I may put it this way ... the gamers themselves really don't care. They'd play as a space marine hunting aliens today, and a wizard casting fireballs the next. Then, they'd go play something "artistic", "Indie" and "emotional" next. In no way would they be suddenly interested in a "historical" experience, much less one that is supposedly so, yet is not. And not very much fun in it either, in the end. I understand that WoWs and WG has found a working system model of attracting, enthralling, controlling, and monetizing players, and good for it, but amongst the scope of all things, and all the games out there, it is still only very limited, and that is something one should not forget. There is no way for me to express this professionally, but perhaps WoWs does have to start thinking about things beyond its own scope of view. Secondly. If I may bring to your attention to those extremely impressive visuals. Even though it is noticeably cinematic shaded, it is still impressive enough to almost be on par with the level of visuals WoWs reserves for its trailers. The clouds, the weather lighting, that ocean surface glimmer, that ship wake, the smoke coming out of its funnels, that crisp, sparkling explosion effect and the volumetric smoke and glaze ... all in real time rendering. So yes, it is very possible with real time rendering, and has been so for a while now. This point is pretty self-explanatory. To think that in WoWs, we have to purposefully dim down the visuals (and thus our enjoyment) for gameplay purposes ... just like people turning all graphical options to lowest in PUBG, so they can more easily spot and kill other players. In the end, people who like visuals will leave the game, and people who like gameplay will also leave the game (because they can achieve that gameplay elsewhere, perhaps in a make-believe stylized simplified cartoonish version where graphics are not the focus). It is just a self-contradicting and self-defeating argument. We can't lose half the players every time a new option appears with either the same level of graphics or the gameplay. Which brings us back to point, an "unique" impression of WoWs must be cultivated, discovered, or even designed if need, so that there can be no partial nor holistic substitute for it. A specific experience, image, logical structure and signature. And a respectable one at that. But I'm getting ahead of myself. For now, just know that graphics are indeed advancing at a ridiculous pace, where relevant. Next sequence: You will notice that it is at dusk, the host just parachuted onto the ocean surface, and the ships have lighted spotlights in preparation for night battle. We see it firing its guns, brief glimpses of shells exiting, fires burning from hole in its damaged hull. We also get a scripted-esque view of the ship launching torpedoes. Then an explosion, debris, with no harm to the host, and the ship promptly sinks (too promptly), but we do get a brief glimpse of it underwater (without dedicated underwater visuals) (but which we cannot do, at all in WoWs). Again, the graphics are extremely impressive, and all in real time. It is action-packed, dynamic, and spectacular. Comparably, the WoWs grind as an experience is almost boring. For a more stable footage, we see this sequence: The ship is sailing, firing, has a spotlight, and lays mines. Because it can, and I assume since those are in the game, the mines actually work. The point here is that even thought they don't have specific night battle mechanics, hell, they don't even have day battle mechanics, but as much as we could joke about it, they do have spotlights, they do have mines, and that is already more than WoWs has ever done. As we see here, the ship wake is different from the aerial view, but the ocean waves do bob it up and down, and there is spray and shudder in the wake, very impressive. In WoWs, the primary concern for boring visuals is to not interfere with gameplay ... and bobbing waves would make it hard to judge ships' angle, speed, waterline etc. Yet, we use mods that show us ship angles, to peek over mountains, and are still temporarily blinded (and frustrated) whenever multiple shells hit the water around a ship, sending up waterspouts (I know, we asked for it, but while it was good fantasizing about it, the actual gameplay itself just ... doesn't let us enjoy the nice things). Fundamentally, when we get disgruntled by even mere seconds of waterspouts, it just shows how hard it is to enjoy the experience of WoWs, when pressing economy/progression and gameplay concerns plague the player's mind. The game was designed to be maybe just a bit too oppressive, bit un-player-friendly, if I may dare to speak. While this may be part of the philosophy of WoWs and WG, and I respect that, it still simply does have its shortcomings. Also notice that its AA gun does fire at the distant airship, and there are tracers coming from that specific AA gun, and from that tracer frequency we can gauge its dps efficiency or whatever. At any rate, nonexistent in WoWs at the same level of detail. Just imagine if AA tracers in WoWs originated from every specific gun that could fire, and from the frequency of tracers we could gauge their tick rate, and the length/thickness of them as their distance(or speed)/damage. This has most probably been suggested before in forums. And the people who did, lost interest (and hope) in WoWs. Also you may notice a bit farther down the sequence we get brief "captain's view" snippets from the position of the in-game ship conning tower. While this feature has been suggested as early as WoWs existed, there is still no "first person" view for the ships in WoWs. Such a view would have been fun, and nice, to enjoy. Also notice that even farther down the sequence, when he crashes his ship into the side of the lighthouse, it does slow him down, but instead of beaching him, it "bounces" him off harmlessly. Completely unrealistic, obviously. Yet, also more "enjoyable" than WoWs. Between a predicament and harsh logic, we are in ... sigh. Next sequence: This is soon after the lighthouse-crash. He is being chased by an airship. The airship is op. It proceeds to hit him right in the midsection, causing a visually impressive fire (but also notice the reflections from moonlight on the water beside the ship ... just beautiful), and his damaged ship starts keeling sideways. The airship then proceeds to drop an ... ugh ... weighted object on him, hastening the sideways keeling and sinking. We don't see the complete sequence in that snippet, but we do get to see an actual keeling-sideways and sinking here: Although from a very very close view ... but at least we do know that ships keel sideways as they are destroyed. While we have sinking animations in WoWs too, they still have no effect on gameplay at all, though we know that listing ships and other "realistic" characteristics were a very large point for them historically. The damage of a ship could be visually gauged from its posture, ships would shift water and oil between ballast tanks to rectify their position at least enough to continue battle, and when they could not anymore, lose balance and capsize. Not something representable in WoWs ... at least not with the current game system. Also I'd like to point out those instant turn-rates for the torpedo tubes and gun turrets in BF. Funny and ridiculous to look at, once we get used to the turrets in WoWs. Some Air-Attack sequences: Fighter strafing DD Bomber dropping bombs/torpedoes So really, not much to say from this video except "wow, look at what the BF series managed to do". Before we had such visual, graphically represented examples to compare against WoWs, most players could only either express their ideas in text, or draw concept diagrams. Nothing of which would come remotely close to making an impression, but with this concrete example, an actual game from another company, we know that the competition for WoWs is not War Thunder torpedo boats or something that unpolished, oh no no no, it is everyone and anyone else in the industry capable of using their systems to develop a Warships themed game. Or a game even better than a Warships themed game, it's just that the Warships theme doesn't even interest them. Most games are first-personed protagonist centered nowadays w/story. (Which brings us to another question, how on earth would WoWs manage a campaign which requires these ... qualitative touches. When the time comes.) But in the worst case scenario, say that the War Thunder naval action, which has been hauled back into intensive development (from which their players summed up was probably due to them realizing torpedo-boats just weren't really gonna sell), does manage to create something unique, new, and possibly competitive. Unlike WG, they have experimented on fictional titles with differing game styles, even on new innovative systems such as component-based building games (likely building off their expertise in "component damage"). And so they do have some established experience in new possibilities, unlike WG. That they might possibly consider yet something new, that is maybe even workable, is actually not too unthinkable. Even though I am not too worried, due to the actual presentation of their line of products, and general polish, still, PUBG had no polish whatsoever and still hit it big for a good while. And it might just inspire the big fish to focus their perspectives on this area of context, of which WoWs does not, surprisingly, have absolute claim yet. And all I know is, if WoWs does nothing, it will hit nothing whatsoever, much less big, that is for sure. All until someone else does. So better not wait until then to start exploring options.
  8. Procedure omitted. Much omitted. Basic Conclusion: It is more desirable to aim for the "presence" of an answer rather than an answer itself. (Answers to questions of what? Well it wouldn't o've mattered even if I repeated myself here. Light, space, time, fate, form, thresholds, flow, ... more. See? Meaningless if just said in this way, anyways. I might as well be singing empty songs. I mean, those are not questions. But what if they were?) [In other words: to mimic the state of reaching an answer or a conclusion, e.g. the ceremonial process of either via winning, eliminating the evil, achieving goals, surviving, coming to terms with the issue or the environment, preventing the evil contraption from blowing up the world, and etc. Or more ideological ones, like achieving peace, ideological/character growth, solving problems, seeing the truth, saving and protecting someone/something, salvation and redemption, and that sort etc.] (On a side note, that's why it's so easy to write plots involving "love". It's the placeholder for everything. But it distracts one from much more worthy things. In short: It's a cheap thing to do. Yet mostly what we get nowadays.) However, to resort to "mimic" is only tactically justifiable, and merely statistically "desirable". Not yet "ideal". And definitely not something one would like to fall into a habit of doing. Ideally, one establishes a "self-reinforcing process" of natural "pull" based, high initiative development, by utilizing the "void's natural/innate tendency to pull". ("Universal gravitation" resemblance. "Stack the odds in your favour", passively. Subtly. Inherently. Cohesively. Understand natural tendencies of progression, curiosity, statistical chance, and other "pulls". Create something singular, definitive, finality, as topic which will naturally evolve into a continuously evolving franchise. E.g. actually discovering something resembling an "answer".) In other words, regardless of whether the answer was achieved in the end, the formalities are what ultimately makes it an answer or not. Thus it is more desirable for games to instead "mimic" an answer in "feel, structure, form", or to mimic the "feeling" of reaching that answer, than to attempt to actually answer a question thyself. (It being an illusion is not regarded as a problem, because it is only ideological and hypothetical after all.) Because only this way, it can achieve the self-contradictory state of both reaching a conclusion, yet still allowing space for continuity. And it's all about continued franchises these days. And other compromises. In this manner, both "push" based design, e.g. placeholder qualitative aspects, while rushing game system versions to establish a "foothold"; and "pull" based design, e.g. revolving around thought, qualitative content, story, artistic ideas and the such in an attempt to finality answer hypothetical questions, can occur at the same time. However, my stance is that ultimately "pull" based content will win out. Unfortunately the extended conclusion slipped away, so I am unable to provide further explanation. -But I can attempt to describe this ultimate conclusion more. -Due the the inherent nature of the art form, and also the direction games are taking, "pull" typed logic is working. A self-recurring feedback loop is probably present, both in reality and in their ideological form, but I cannot precisely pin it atm. -In other words, it will soon matter to be more adept at the manipulation of "pull" based logical forms, than just managing to get by with rapid "push" based tactics. "Polish" will matter more than "product completion". "Reverse engineering" from traced and triangulated logical positions (optimal "high-grounds") will be more efficient than pushing towards something with one's own natural product evolution. With one logical signature one gains a claim. With two, a bearing. With three, a heading. Emphasis for the timing on "cashing out" that claim when the position becomes in-sight and imminently reachable by all, shall be the new hot-trend for a while. The moment when "push" absolutely must shift closer to "pull". Care to not lost the opportunity when it comes by, be prepared and informed, so to not lose the "tug-of-war". Side notes: -Oh on a side note, too much claim on an answer, or claiming too many answers, yet skipping out on actual answers with only placeholder "push" based content release, will incur a whiplash effect from the playerbase in form of bad reputation and ill-will. This is highly detrimental to the franchise in the long run. Sometimes the size/weight of the claim is dependent on the topical context, and not controllable by you. [In other words, it is the act of a scoundrel to claim to present something with "pull", and an answer, but actually deliver something lesser. Or at least it is generally perceived as so. I myself am quite guilty. Still, the rule is absolute.] -Usually, purposefully opaque, far-away fictional, extreme, dire, statistically rare, publicly accepted interpretive fiction forms, and etc. topics are chosen to specifically capitalize on the un-verifiable and inconclusive nature of their corresponding conclusions. It is easier to fool with illusion of an answer, when the question was also illusional, and even better, also formulated by you. This particular structure of logic is a key theory in game design, ex. the argument of whether to formulate new, highly customized and compatible "logical tools set" for the player to use only in our game franchise, or instead to make use of generally available building blocks and common knowledge. However, too stuck on this stance misses the possibilities, and the opportunities, of the real leverages: making use of second-generation high-grounds (I suddenly cannot precisely recall its correct description). In a more imagery description, "nesting" more comfortably, wedging oneself more stubbornly into natural crevices, entrenching on the claim more, on naturally occurring logical corners and strong-points. Or, using feedback from first-generation "triangulation soundings" to make even more audacious inferences. However you prefer to interpret it. I am using description because its true, prismatic, unabridged nature is beyond my ability to portray in english. As is most worthy things. -Unfortunately employing "push" based tactics in this stance of logic tends to drive one into a more "narrow hole", and not even necessarily deeper. Just finer. It is easy for whole industries to lose the general direction this way, losing whole chunks of possibilities and opportunities. So yet another argument for having a good fundamental grasp of "pull" based development in addition to everything else. Ending words: We have heard the term "industrial era". "Information era". Someday, we will reach a "logical" era. Where possibilities are systemically explored and developed upon. Possibly assisted, or even with main initiative, in the hands of A.I. (instead of humans). But definitely not something we can wholly control or matter in anymore. Whether to "push" or "pull" will become mute questions. Merely "states". The only things left were our "choices". Or perhaps there never were really choices after all.
  9. TL:DR read part 2, part of the design for a new WoWs revealed, for the first time ever! Don't miss it!! In fact if you don't usually read everything I write anyways just forget about part 1. Part 1 asks the questions for which answers were reserved in part 2. The questions are less important than the answers. I think I lost my train of thought some-way through part 1 as well. Ah, a nice cloudy morning, perfect for musing. (Then regretting attempting to use 200 lines to express something of which conclusion was already reached in 20 lines and 2 minutes, mentally) This post has two main points. First part is some musings on "Projected Agency" and ramblings on TW:A, while the second part is an example of the Tierpoint system I originally envisioned for WoWs, explained in the context of Total War: Arena. The first part is may be helpful for understanding some decisions made in the second part. Part 1: Projected Agency ... We all know about "agency". It describes immersion versus control at a personal level. High immersion combined with great control and feedback creates an illusion of "agency", in which the player is "inhibiting" the game asset controlled. This is a highly sought after quality for game design and player experience, it is a very large contributor to player enjoyment, and one of the primary reasons people play games. Some counter-examples are how with books, even well-written novels which allow for as much immersion as desired, but due to lack of existence of any actual control or feedback loops, "agency" cannot be achieved. But with rudimentary toys, even just some stick-figures and marbles, "agency" can be achieved as there is direct control, and projected feedback. The first implication of this is that the experience of a game is not necessarily linked to the quality nor nature of its context ... its primary function is an utility, which I explained more in an earlier post. The second implication, which has more to do with the topic of today, is how this "agency" and "feedback" loop can be "incorporeal", even "projected". But this has some conditions. As the saying goes, "to make games is an art, but it is also an art to play games (correctly)". "Correctly" here means "as the creator intended it to be experienced, interpreted, explored". It holds that games are not simple one-way interactions of players navigating a maze like a white lab-mouse to an objective end, but is instead a complex and multi-layered process. There are many assumptions, presumptions, and delicate push-pull questions-answers going on all the time, and the logic which goes on is much deeper than a traditional "problem solving" procedure. And due to the nature of trust, and external immersion, this is a picky negotiation process which has a very real danger of breaking down. And that is the end of a game. But in successful examples, where a mutually delightful relationship occurs in continuity, it will be because a sustainable yet dynamic balance has occurred, and players continually find interest and fun in the game. In more cases than not this was by purposeful design to a semi-planned result, and there are many techniques and leverages usable, but they are not the topic of today. The point is, for a very specific function of achieving pre-conditions of "agency", the in-game assets must be of a fitting logical structure to "receive" the player's "inhibition". This may or may not require them to be i.e. neutral, relatable, of a definitive design, or adhering to whatever picky tastes players may have or matching presumptions and expectations for the context. But a very basic requirement is "to have life". In that they react, at a certain scale, with intelligence proper to a living form. (Scale of intelligence explanation not included, done in other posts). This is mostly achieved via A.I., even rudimentary condition-reaction loops only applicable to the structure of the game. And the player will thus "project" into this unit, character, operative, etc. the proper amount and nature of operative agency, and willfully operate, for it, not for themselves, in high immersion and a "visceral, intuitive, instinctive" game experience. My personal preference is that a intuitive, soft-logic gameplay is more desirable than hard-logic or any other state of gameplay logic there is (but this is going off-topic). And to illustrate the point, I will use TW:A as an example. ... and TW:A Most of us will probably be familiar with the Total War series and their signature RTS experience, even if we do not know of TW:A. In TW:A, each player is in control of only 3 units of infantry. Not 4, not 5, not 2, not 6, not 2x3 (an important point later on), just three. I guess this was reached via conclusion of how many units the average player could keep in mind as well as manage satisfactorily, in a pressured situation. This is not wrong. However, it could have been not the only conclusion. In short, while controlling, micro-managing units to mechanical interaction may have been a signature experience of TW series, it was most certainly not the only experience, even only combat-wise. There are many less-signature features, such as a weather system, and a formation system in which the game organizes for you, your whole army into a historically-based ranged at front, cavalry at sides formation or etc. but as of my personal experience this is rarely used amongst players as most battles are highly terrain dependent which the auto-formation cannot take into account, nor judge for specific tactics and preference players will have in mind for their unit compositions and battle matchups. In short, TW:A took a most identifying feature of TW, but only that feature, and along with all its benefits but also pitfalls, and developed that wholesale into a game, which magnified all these characteristics be they good or bad, while leaving out all the rest. This decision while theoretically sound, could only result in a lukewarm reception and limited growth. My outlook for the future of TW:A is not optimistic. One of the major factors for making this decision was how surprisingly little I gave a flying care about the units I controlled, supposedly human beings, warriors, of distinct culture and tradition. I cared not for their traditions, nor their lives, they existed only for the instrumentality of bringing pain to the enemies in return for pitiful gains, in make-belief and arbitrary scores, not even economic gain. Even if I could become the most skilled player it would mean nothing, I would not enjoy it and no one would enjoy me, and as for the advertising of "step into the shoes, be the heroes of old" thingy, even someone of great imagination could scarcely achieve that form of "play game as intended", if it could even be something describable as "playing as creators intended". For it was beyond even a question of willpower, as it was just so, so easy to see past the facade of the sad, engineered, dead design of the game, killing all "immersion". And as for wishful thinking of players getting hooked onto the game, well, there are much better-made products of psychological poisons, psychological drugs out there, and lets not go in that direction. The game is fundamentally about utilizing the player itself as the construct, with the units only as a medium, in attempt that all interactions are highly obviously player-interactions. While this allows for, in some cases, a serendipitous blend and highly desirable balance of fictional and realistic character, to an interesting outcome, e.g. WoT level balance of player-tank versus player-tank, in other cases, it too rawly projects and transfers the power disparity of player interaction, especially toxic interactions, to other players. In other words, a unit hurting a unit becomes a player hurting a player. A unit bullying a unit becomes a player bullying a player. This game goes over the line, even amongst WG titles, by obviously disassociating the player-existence with the units, leading to some very grey thinking. Combined with how the infantry are thrown to their deaths incessantly, and players using them too instrumentally with much disregard to contextual and historical details, the next questions players will mentally ask is "is that how the developers view these warriors as well? Is that how they view us players as well?" Though of course not, it still gets ugly real fast. For if one cannot even convince themselves, they will never convince their audience. And once the audience doesn't even trust you, well good luck with that. But I digress. The main problem is that the units are unreactive, dead, more soulless than two inorganic chemical compounds reacting together. This is exacerbated in how they are the first attempt of WG to use human beings as medium of war, with all past titles all being primarily about machines. Yet they are less lively than a tank. Perhaps it was precisely because a tank is a tank, and we can imagine it is crewed inside by humans, that makes it acceptable in that context, and which makes any special quirks extra human-like. Compounded by the fact that there are three units, neither of which is "you", in fact they even have a specific "commander" which is also not "you", just begs the question, wtf is the point of you? As an unnecessary observer? Or as the one the little toy soldiers will blame when you position them badly and they get a cavalry in the [edited]? No, they are so lifeless they are incapable of even that. And that is precisely my point. Back on projected agency, is that my measure of a healthy amount of inhabitable mass is nothing short of a minor army. The scale is not the main limiter, and why it has to be an army, but the cohesiveness. Control either one unit, or one army. Controlling 3 units should be controlling a cohort, even a regiment, not 3 separate units. A game in TW:A with 12 players is not an epic battle with 12 armies, but 12 players controlling 3 units each, be they bandits or unorganized mobs. or static 3D geometry with HP bars. You see the point? The TW experience is about controlling leading an army, not micro-managing 3 units and getting cavalry in the hind. While the developers thought it was theoretically significant a player could still at least have 1 unit to fight with if 2 units were down, thus "solving" the longstanding "problem" of WG titles having only 1 unit, this is missing the peacock for the wing. A lost unit is still a lost unit, and a crippled player is still crippled. And honestly, I'd personally prefer to go down in a heroic, correct last stand than flee (unsuccessfully) because I picked the wrong unit for the wrong time in the wrong place. Even if whatever is the equivalent of "repair fees" is 100% waived can not save that progression model by this point. Even if all the player needs to worry about is gaining more exp for their units because no repair fees is present will not solve the fundamental problem of not looking forward to playing with the units at all. The next things you could do then, is waive the exp gain too, and just unlock all tier 1-10, but because of (rightly so) worry that once the player see past the facade they will simply quit the game, which is why WoWs took so long to officially introduce a "developer mode" training room even though it was unofficially available via mod. When players won't even want to play your game, for free, with everything unlocked, it's a problem. A different kind of problem than say, how to part players with their cash, and other more "fundamental" problems, which everyone else is mostly bothered about and are not-at-all embarrassed to "address", but a problem nevertheless. Sigh, even if only an indicator. And to another point; the game while theoretically allowing for combining and matching different units, in reality offers pitiful experience of doing it, except maybe for pure melee infantry leaders. The simple fact that it is possible to achieve a "wrong" combination, in which the player does something wrong and becomes less efficient, is bad game design. Yet what is wrong with getting tired of cavalry in the hind and deciding to take matters into your own hands, instead of relying on unreliable pub teammates? Well, I never done it, but I can empathize with and pity the ones who do. Because I am just as confused as them as to whether I should find this game "fun" or not, and how I am "supposed" to play it, much less enjoy it. Be unicum and be machine-efficient? That's being all business and machine-efficient. Glory in that is a delusion (though may be enough for some). The structural limitation of 3 units, THREE UNITS screams at my face every time I think of the game. I dislike it. Why control only 3 units when I can control an army? Why control 3 units when I can now control an orc army, with dragons and vampires and loads of fun? Without having to worry about compositions? Just to match up and 'grind' together with other players? In a "dead" campaign in which my only progression is gaining units with slightly higher stats to grind against the same units with slightly higher stats? No, you mean "support" teammates? But protect and guard does not work like that. It touches on another highly complex topic of love, compassion, etc. but just take my word that there is not a whole lot of it in that game. I have no desire to project anything into the game, not just because I can find nothing to project it to. There is no charm in this mechanical contraption. For once we know that 3 units is but a limitation, unlike other WG titles in which only having 1 unit was theoretically and objectively sound, having 3 units is now actually a new thing to be dissatisfied and worry about. And god forbid games introduce more things for you to be dissatisfied about. And this is what happens when lack of cohesion occurs. The design virtually falls apart at the seams, and so does the experience. It ceases to be a "work", but only about statistics. No interpretation allowed, thus no immersion allowed. Much less creator-intended interpretation, which is supposed to be something very singular, definitive, decisive, final, that it is worthy of being expressed and engaged over not, and desirable to be immersed in. So the conclusion is that the "form" of TW:A does not lead player to desire to have agency in it, while the difficulty and lack of proper inhibition for agency discourages agency. Worse, raw un-moderated player-player power disparity interactions are toxic not positive, and lack of long-term, scaleable meaning, while not going all the way in the other direction (e.g. being fully exploitative and predatory on player's wallets, but in more subtle ways), spells almost certain slow doom for that game, too. And after another 3 years, when problems for that game start to be addressed, well, future-gen games will already have arrived. Even WoT will not hold its ground in the face of those. And thus the question: How could one structurally address these problems? Part 2: An application of the Tierpoint system in TW:A The "Tierpoint" system was a system designed to specifically allow tiers 1 thru 10 to play together in a same match. Why this is desirable is the key question, and possibly the only question. For WG titles with only one unit, this was a very legit question too (such as how one would willingly play a lower-tier unit), but in TW:A, but this major theoretical obstacle practically disappeared for TW:A, by how one could have more than one "unit". The "Tierpoint" system is defined by the concept of assigning to each and every unit a specific power score relevant to their tier, loadout, utility, etc. It is assumed this score is quite accurate and precise. Thus by matching the total scores of each team's composition, it is assumed a relatively fair chance is given to each team, as lower tierpoint individual cost allows for swarming in more numbers, while more elite high-tier units allow for more individually pressuring roles. Ideally, mis-and-match of many different units of different tierpoint scale is the best and assumed most desirable outcome for a highly efficient army. As incentive for more varied armies, as it was imagined for WoWs, "fleet" types would allow "discounts" on Tierpoint cost for certain ships, or even some bonuses and extra equipment options, up to a specific number and type, if they fit within the "mold" of that fleet, e.g. a light escort fleet, a main BB battle fleet, a CV strike fleet, etc. This would have an effect on how they approach objectives, maps, and teamplay, assumed supporting mechanics of the game allows for gameplay at such depth, variety, and continuity. The second most defining characteristic of the "Tierpoint" system is scaleability. A low tier ship mounting high-tier equipment will incur more tierpoints, as accurately reflects. A larger ship mounting more equipment will cost procedurally more than a smaller or lower tierpoint ship mounting the same equipment, e.g. a BB mounting a better AA gun will have more of that AA gun than a DD. Due to how skills would also scale and interact with this, even AA barrage interaction was different for each and every class, and how skills would have to be designed to be still applicable even in varying forms. It is certainly an extensive overhaul. But the point is, the Tierpoint system would work for both low and high tier, small and large fleets. Which leads to the point, due to how units are very stats based in TW:A, this would theoretically allow for easier integration into an encompassing tierpoint system than WoWs ships which scale in ship class (e.g. from light to heavy cruisers) with tier. A player choosing some low fodder infantry for their javeliners can choose low-tier fodder if they so wished, but with high-tier javeliners, and the MM should count them for less than a 3xT10 player. And this would be as simple as matching the tierpoint to the stats, scaled off the infantry, so even the exact number of infantry per unit you wished could be customized. The tierpoint will simply adjust accordingly. (But the tierpoint system was still imagined with a team-centric focus, and much was attempted, and still attempted, to better the experience for the individual player at an arcade level. For WoWs, Game-phases, respawning in fleets, continuous and procedurally generated objectives and scenarios, more options for repair, survival and team-covering and protecting from insta-deaths, and death in general, more continuity beyond single-game matches etc. Some of these could have still been useful if applied to a TW:A game design. But simply by allow multiple units, and "modular" death even for a single player, it is undoubtedly a much higher starting point of design.) For TW:A, a player could theoretically control the equivalent of a whole WoWs "fleet" by themselves. In that their army would have varied units, their for a specific purpose. But this implies more than 3 units will be needed. It may be the case, but perhaps no more than 3 unit types would be. In fact total unit type could be a meaningful variable for different "army" types. But in the case of few distinct unit types, "micro" units factor would be introduced. E.g in the beginning of part 1, I mentioned 3x2 units. This means there are 6 units of infantry, of 3 different types, 2 of each type. Theoretically one could have 2 of the first type, 3 of the second type and 1 of the 3rd type. Now form these units into a meaningful army formation, as mentioned in the easily overlooked original TW structure. Now you have a "super-unit", of which 12 of these on the battlefield would be equivalent to 12 armies battling together. This transcends the TW experience, and only a scale of innovation at this level would justify the competitiveness of a new title, and a new WG title. Now many practical questions occur, but I will not list them individually. The main answers to the questions will be how even though this is an arcade version, e.g. simplification of the impacts of formation of units, much of the delicate details could be overcome by minor A.I., e.g. minor and automatic formation adjustments. Simplified and qualitative army-wide commands given by the player could address more strategic decisions. (This "formation + levelled assistive A.I." draws from 2 other separate designs of similar level to the WoWs design, plus the air sphere of the WoWs design. Do not waste it). All in all, the "army" the player controls, be it a very large army or a minor elite regiment, acts and functions as a whole, or will at least attempt to. There will be options to separate a unit from the army and send it off e.g. cavalry to scout a base, then integrate it back into the army seamlessly, but it will be as smooth and flexible as jello goo. Using the increased processing power of modern hardware, large-army and large-theatre operations with many players can be simulated. When two armies collide, the units will behave as if in an actual scenario without you having to micro-command each and every one. They will behave, lifelike and intelligent as if commanded by their own minor officers (of which imaginably, even behaviour one can customize) and the minor officers can have auto-cast abilities and items if so desired, and traits and skills as well. Formational preference of the army, even automated reactive formations (such as tactical retreat with cover, even splitting or sacrificing units) and fluid transformations (such as when changing direction) can be customized and pre-tested for the supportive A.I. if not already available (but anything available will be continuously improved based on both feedback from players and data analysis of the A.I. on developer side, even machine learning can be considered), and even custom formations may be possible, if pre-designed by the player to be loaded in battle. All in all, this allows for many, many possibilities, and as I always say, possibilities is joy. Also, how many overarching "commanders" (similar to the current commander system) (maybe 3 max) one can have in this mini-army of theirs may also be a factor. You can also make the development and growth of these commanders into a mini-game. Hire some writers. How exciting this will be. And to address the "form" question from part 1, now that we have addressed the technical structure question, yes this will improve immersion, and projected agency. "Projected" agency is when traditional agency in the inhibition sense does not occur, but the player projects (guesses) a coherent picture for an unit based on what details are available, and also projects (outwardly engage) their own personal meaning, like highly willed resonance, without actually taking full control of actions. The "form" of a minor army, a cohesive whole, hints life and meaning beyond singular existence. It incorporates many qualities and transcended meaning for the particular context of historical warriors and such. The minor "reactions" of individual units in light of a larger picture, the engagement of two armies, hints at life and intelligence as well. The proper separation and threshold of operation of the player, allowing the player to make the proper strategic decisions of the higher level, as qualitatively fitting, compared to minor details of macro-ing units, even micro-ing units, is beneficial to the cohesive experience of the game as whole. It is also less fatiguing. (Also what is with every WG title having those low camera limits). Scaling meaning from even a small, 4-unit army to a 20-unit wave of men. And more-so, if we want to add meaning to player-skill and allow them the "proper glory", then in the "grand-scale" battle, the higher a rank a player holds for ranked, the more "total" tierpoint their army can be. As they deserve to, and are probably capable of managing and making the decisions for a mass army, as well as carrying the fates of their teammates on their backs. Yet, the lower-ranked player has no pressure nor shame, they can focus on a more specific task with a more dedicated task force, and can still experience the "mass army" experience of many micro-units, just with cheaper units. And if they do a good job, well, isn't that as much as one could ask for? Sometimes a scenario is beyond your hands. As was historically so. And with good design, all difficulties of the implications this bring, too, can properly be weathered. (Such as ensuring your avatar officer survives. Idk, arbitrary or not, many small to large designs are possible.) (This may or may not involve an overhaul of the design of the progression of the game, but hell, campaigns for the WoWs version too were part of it, so progression was definitely changed). Now, while I am certainly very happy the tierpoint system could be so smoothly applied for TW:A instead of WoWs, there are also specific features of WoWs, contextually accurate too, TW:A can not replicate. Such as WoWs having aerial sphere, how one ship and its damage control systems is so important, how reinforcements, vision, and modern battle-tactics work ... all-in-all, it allows for a different "feel", "form" than TW:A. Yet, it follows some common core game-design structures (just like how WG titles all do), one being the tier 1-10 system (yes tierpoint is compatible with tier 1-10). Of which I will shameless remarck, I believe is a better system to follow than WG using the current tier 1-10 system the core of their every design (yet with less individual, unique adjustments per game, every game is almost the same rock-paper-scissors with hp-bars mold.) A qualitative ideal, so to say, as standards, principles, over a rigid and dead specific system that is cheapening the WG experience. And also, to address yet another part I don't like about part 1, the developers do not trivialize their context. It is this horrendous game system which makes it seem like so. The wrong conclusion of what was signature of WoT was drawn, and was continuously drawn throughout WoWp, WoWs, and now TW:A (but part of the wrong conclusion was also drawn from TW series, in the unit micro-ing over more ... hard to describe general experiences and qualities). This is not a player-centric design approach, as the player cares not what you think (nor does the bumblebee), only what they play and enjoy, defying all your laws and rules in how they can do so. But with this, I view optimistically, for it is all the more possibilities, and possibility is joy. Idk, I'll probably regret ranting off like this after I've had more coffee.
  10. "Soft" versus "Hard" It is to my observation that games which offer "soft" variety are more popular than games with only "hard" variety. The difference of "Soft" versus "Hard" variety is approaching the concept of "variety" with either "soft logic" or "hard logic". "Soft" is when the concept occurs but is not necessarily determinate on a specific mechanism. "Hard" is when the concept occurs in a controlled, sequential, consequential and specific example of occurrence. However, this does not mean it is impossible to design (specifically) for "soft" occurrence. It simply means that "soft" occurrences are mathematically indeterminate due to "soft" numbers such as approximation, or engage in too many results at once to feasibly mathematically analyze each. I suspect that players prefer to engage in this kind of "soft numbers" logic over "hard" theory-crafting and math. After all, "possibility" itself is joy. And this "true" randomness is better than a random "number generator". On Variety MOBA games with a large selection of characters, especially those which allow multiple characters per team, and have a character pool over a few dozen, approach "soft" composition possibility due to how many variants of team compositions are possible. Even "Rainbow 6" has more of this "soft" possibility via unique playstyles, loadout, and abilities of each operator. This means it has the "soft" variety benefits of over "Counter-Strike", where the only difference is in weapon loadout. It also offers less possibilities in routing and engagement. Another notable example is "Battlefield" series offering a large environmental map with destructible buildings, and enough variance in classes for varied playstyles. This, along with its vehicles system, lets it compete to major franchises such as "Halo" and "Call of Duty". Other examples are how even small-scale Indie games can be extremely popular too if utilizing "core" concepts such as "Soft Variety". Inherent gameplay being fascinating is a very strong leverage compared to other possible techniques. Blizzard games are strong examples of inherent gameplay quality. And with continued breakthroughs in game industry general, as well as increased influence in western sphere from foreign game products (Far Eastern, South American, Nordic, Scandinavian countries etc.), we are seeing more and more advances and variation in the field of design. I simply believe that WoWs, if utilizing a "soft-variety" concept in its system, would significantly improve its gameplay, and thus popularity and competitiveness. On possibilities of Variety in WoWs Currently MM is very rigid. There is not that many individual ships per team compared to games offering up to 60 players per team, including WoT. CV classes, possibly able to offer the most variety, are hard mirrored. And there are no fundamental differences in engagement for the other classes, it is "grind together and die" gameplay with little variance in approach due to overly-engineered map design, and un-impactful objective design. There is little incentive to play in a varied playstyle either, due to how the progression system is designed. Many factors such as these contribute in total to a boring gameplay experience over the long run, or which its variances are too subtle to be easily enjoyable by general gamer populations. While cohesiveness of many features, polish in technical aspects etc. are undoubtedly important, and WoWs is not without its strong points, it is unfortunate that as things are, it seems they do not offer as much leverage for the game as gameplay quality could. As I understand, WoWs was designed at its conception with a "rock-paper-scissors" "hard-logic" "push-based engineered" approach at its core, not to mention many "hard" structures it inherited from WoT design practices. This perhaps has significantly determined the limitations of its "possibilities". A review at the fundamental level of WoWs systems, as well as WG core structures in general, may prove beneficial for the long run. And perhaps this is how much it will be required to be able to modernize WoWs to a more competitive standard. On conceptual application in WoWs One thing that WoWs once had was a non-mirrored CV system, and that was perhaps the most close to "variety" as WoWs ever had, despite it being cancelled due to balance concerns. A first step would be to imagine and envision a system in which non-mirrored CV in both tier and number is not only balanced, but desired. Some immediate implications and major ramifications this brings to mind is primarily the tier-based MM logic used to composite teams, and the delicate balance of in-game power-balance one CV could bring. This means that the new system would have to 1. Have more finesse than the decimal tier-based MM. 2. Soften influence disparity of a CV compared to normal ships. (Or raise normal ships) 3. Allow for (at first glance) mismatched teams to have fair chances of contesting objectives or engaging in battle. Drawing from conclusions via other games, for MOBA games, we understand that each team is not a wholly random composition. There are approximate "roles" such as tank, dps, support, and approximate "team composition" such as poke-based teams, gank and roam versus decisive teamfights. RTS games stress placement of many different types of units to maximize their abilities, and many interlinked micro-strategies to form an overall operation, stressing cohesive balance and management as well. FPS games are highly combative and reward opportunity utilization and leverage-utilize techniques significantly. But it offers a fundamentally fair approach to win for any and all classes (for traditional FPS at least, cough*Overwatch*cough) due to a very strong yet straightforward core game-mechanics design. While this is a highly simplistic approach, via analogies in other types of games based on their similarities to WoWs, and only viewed from perspective of "team-variety" ignoring many other key concepts such as player agency, one can still get the idea how WoWs is not decisive enough in its execution of "signature interaction" type game-mechanics which help to build and define genres. While it can be argued WG lines are trying to forge their own genre-identity, I still think gameplay quality could be improved most significantly compared to prevalent standards. But I digress. It means WoWs will have to consider using systems which allow more finesse in team-composition, strategic and tactical approaches to objectives, to have objectives, and to allow for "Soft", intuitive, yet not muddy and out-of-control combative feedback loops. (cough*detonations*cough) On specific examples for WoWs Now, this is the open internet after all and we cannot guarantee there are no competitor spies keeping an eye on forums, deciding to adapt things WG would overlook. Commercial discretion and all ... so no, there will be no detailed, well-written, clearly explain examples of systems here today. Besides, you are tired from reading all my text-phalanx rants now. (Thanks for reading btw). So Shoo. Go enjoy games.
  11. Third post in a day ... I think something definitely mixed in that coffee I drank earlier, to allow this kind of madness XD But anyways, lets be honest, WoWs is not doing too well. Its steam release had about the amount of games of a visual novel, and only a second-tier one. Thus we can agree, it's not about exposure. After 2 years, anyone who'd have wanted to try out this free game would have probably done so. Anyone who wished to stay, is clear as well. Thus all other questions aside first, why so little population? One could say, no we have a dozen-thousand players on each regional server, that's not "little". But iphone mobile games get those numbers too. Hell, Indie games in steam get those numbers even from clueless people just trying them out. Is WoWs some Indie game? No, of course not. Then what level should it be? (with no offence meant to Indie games) Lets direct out attention a moment to World of Tanks. It is undoubtedly successful, possibly the finest of its kind on the market. All other WG games which mimicked its design and structure, closely or less so, have yet to achieve anything comparable. This is confounding. It's not a problem about context; there are multitudes of games of every genre out there dealing with war, violence, teamplay, and progression trees. From first-person to strategy sims. So it's not a niche context. Is it the historical context driving people off? Hypothetically, it could be, but I cannot even imagine how it could remotely be a negative perk. I could start making jokes about tanks and barrel-length compensating for things, but the idea is, even I am confounded on why games other than WoT, by WG, are just not runoff successes. And that brings us to topic. They are not. There are reasons. And heed them we must. The first thought I have is that people are so enthralled by WoT, any other game even remotely similar would simply be leeching off its playerbase. If this were an absolute rule, then the players on all non WoT WG titles can be considered only of a few circumstances, new players who never invested in WoT, players who would have played WoT in any other world but simply liked the context of new titles better, and players who for whatever reason just game. This rule would be true if there were only so few new players who never invested in WoT, and so few players who would like the context of new titles. Players who just game are picky types, and only play the best games. The problems implicated by such a state of matter, is that surprisingly, there are many, many players who have never touched a WoT. Yet so few who wouldn't know anything about the context WG chooses to make games out of. And if you'd take my word for it, the picky types, they'd actually try more games than non-picky types. All these factors, again, point in directions which would lead to conclusions that WG games having such little popularity is grossly unjustified. And WG, I think, believes so too, their games are just hidden gems for whatever reasons, still hidden. So they keep making them their way, because nothing can come wrong from that. At least, it's being loyal to existing players just as they are loyal to you. But let's think from outside the tower. Of the amount of free time any player, even in a developed country, it is surprisingly limited. If they expect to spend time, the most precious resource second only to fate, they expect it to be well spent. They expect a not just expertly curated set of experiences, but a perfect set of experiences. Soon, even a custom tailored experience. To diverge little from their expectations and aspirations, yet at the same time, exceed and surprise their expectations. Divergence without deviance, too, for players customers are like mages, subtle and easily angered. Plane-walking mages too, for this is the era of choice. There are not just dozens of games in the same genre, but hundreds, several hundreds, every year! And but a handful of those will every make it popular enough to sell more than a few thousand units. and about 2-3 will be popular enough to be feature on ... well, say a gaming website, youtube, front store of steam. And even the glass display of the window, with only the most proud merchandise on display, do they only linger for a few, no not minute, seconds, and only if something strikes their fancy shall they inquire upon it, and woe if something strikes even the briefest tone of dislike, for it will instantly be attributed a reason and conclusion. For there are many shops, many types of merchandise, and many, many astounding gems of works, even those not in shops, even those not buyable. And how does a gamemaker compete with all that? Perhaps one should just go become a shoemaker instead. But even shoemaker's face stiff competition and standards nowadays, XD Ahem. I can't stand cheerfulness. Ah, but that reminds of an important point. Games, art, interpretive media, that is an exception. I am happy to deal with cheerfulness or anything else in those. I am happy to see others enjoy. I am happy to immerse and imagine a character, for instance, experience. For those are but logic, and logic is transcending. If a dog could think as a human, it wouldn't matter if it was a dog, and it could make choices .. a definition of intelligence. And if humans wouldn't have to choose for the sake of choosing, but only need be, like plants, and like gods, too great to be hurt by anything, yet too great to need to hurt anything else ... true to their nature, or something ... Subtle yet all-encompassing. Deeply logical yet illogical. In the luxury industry, anything to a high enough standard deals with art. All their advertising campaigns are mini-art exhibits. Their events are high-class social events. In the end, all comes back to this. Industry, past a certain standard, gets integrated and becomes a cornerstone of civilization, a great status raise. Life is not without its hunger, but formed gracefully, be it sequences of words or pictures, it becomes academic, law, or art. Even the ferocity and wildness of but a beast, in its purest form, truest form, is something sacred, and infused with finality. For beasts simply be, pure as gods, purer than humans ever could. And so it is, amongst all things, when a player chooses a game, they are not choosing instant gratification, justice, or even enjoyment ... they are choosing to, no, yearning to, engage instantaneously at that high level of logic. Something pure, singular, definitive, decisive, final. Preferably, beautiful, just, noble, graceful. Yet for practical reasons, firstly, if one could operate those levels, one is probably not a gamemaker shoemaker. Even if one could. they'd still be stuck as the shoemaker, and could only maybe operate their gypsy orchestra every now and then on weekends. Ahem, getting sidetracked again ... Secondly, due to some convoluted rules of modern culture and media and stuff, a keyword is self-referential. It has come to a point where nothing ever made could ever be original or completely unconceived, even in partial form, before. For science, it's great, but for art, where originality raises value by hundredfold, the "post-modern" route is simply to wear it with pride, make jokes and parodies, purposefully outrageous deviations to hint in some mad way, the original. It also means anyone who is (blasphemy!) naive enough to think they could still attempt guilt and sin-free, originality and the simple, direct route, they'd be framed with precisely naive, unskilled, low-level, elementary, etc.and those are just the unbiased attributes. Still, this is quite dependent on culture, and established norms ... some forms are more forgiving than others, but this rule, unfortunately, is still absolute. It works on statistical logic, not on some arbitrary cultural analysis. The diminishing returns on qualitative content exists massively. In short, to achieve 100% efficiency, for a second work, you'd have to make 10 works of the final level, yet pick 1 of the best to represent. Otherwise, if you only made 1, even at the highest level obtainable as your first work, it would only have 10% qualitative efficiency. Ridiculous, I know, but if one could make 10 works, they'd make 10 works, and probably be a genius too. Which brings us to how. The 100% efficiency assumed non-negotiable. Yet, most people in their lifetimes seldom make more than 10 total works, or even attempts at that level, much less be hugely wasteful in making 10 than discarding 9 for each. Much more common is amongst the 10 actual works of a lifetime, one or two is chosen as singular, definitive, final. The rule is absolute. It is even possible there will not be another WoT miracle again. Though that is quite impossible, and only a question of when, for us, a question of "when" is a question of "if". So that route is undesirable. To be, naturally, and trust in the genius ... that is one way. But it is not being chosen, for by being natural, it is guaranteed some things will be less desirable than others, and no one wants to be those. Plants live and die, but we don't choose to. Thus, norms, forms, and zeitgeist exist. Industry standards and practices exist, even when not scientifically necessarily, simply statistically. It's all about business. A business is, incredibly, not judged by the nature of its products. Much less quality. Originality is way out of the question. Also by the way trust doesn't exist except in finality. Also again, if it's slow, the question of "when" becoming "if". Thus the simplest way is almost out of the options. Even excellence doesn't work? Then what could? Well, practically, there are many practical techniques able to apply, to lessen the unfavorable leverage of that 10-1 ration of diminishing returns to something more manageable, like 3-1. Established consumer norms, expectations, artistic trends and genres and forms, these all push to form a practical convergence. Whether these balance odds against the consumer, or whether it is even ethical and responsible for things beyond one generation and maximizing development etc. are deep questions but practically irrelevant, in practice. But as mentioned, the law is absolute. The odds still exist, and despite choosing the 10-1 option does not mean you will have a 30-1 benefit in a 3-1 field, a 100% in a 10-1 still makes a difference, and is recognized so, from a 100% in a 3-1. But recognition is worthless, again. So, are practical techniques the way to go? Perhaps, all possible logical outcomes are pointing in that conclusion. And a conclusion, is absolute. But I am only capable (apologies) of bringing out one more option. The aforementioned "miracles". WoT is a miracle for a reason, it took a 10-1 route and did it. Miracles, are a qualitative difference. Anything worthwhile takes time, but that value, instead of pandering for favor, gains respect. But even that is not miracles. As mentioned earlier, there is a thing called trust, it is final. Usually, there is continuity after trust, and things move on. But at that singular moment, all future bets is hedged aside, no more if's, no more when's, all superpositions are converged, and everything is final. And thus, if to be natural is the way to go, then only naturally, being final, can a final level work be naturally made. And the term "miracle" will only be but a term. And unnecessary anymore, for in continuity, it is past that. (In a good way) And that is the best I can do. Before I regress back to before whatever I ingested causing me to exhume things like this, because clearly, these madness can't have originated from me. And like all my rant, I totally diverged from whatever I wanted to say in the beginning, something much more sensible ... but meh. The technical analysis can wait.
  12. Note: due to a flaw with the forum system all work was not saved. I'm not going to use the forums for posting like this any more.
  13. KarmaQU_EU

    World of HP Bars (not serious)

    Coincidentally, I am a bit pre-occupied this weekend to write anything long, so here's the short version of (part of) what I wanted to write. There was this well-founded piece of criticism I once saw, describing WG products as "world of hp bars". If we would see games as "constructs of logic", pertaining to such models which can be scientifically measured and analyzed, and then deducted to their absolute forms. These constructs of logic be it psycho-mechanical or conceptual, are then able to be evaluated via numerous metrics, revealing how they work, and their place compared to all things. Even if a game was a flawless composition of tight and clear logic, without human interpretation it would only be logic and nothing more. And these delicate and complex dynamics have the potential to go beyond their workings, endeavor for something greater, and not become the endeavor itself, that they serve to remind us so. There, "condensed my thoughts into 5 sentences". 5 boring sentences accomplishing nothing whatsoever, with the added liability of being misleading. If I were more skilled, perhaps I could have even expressed more in just 3 sentences. But in proper context, just 1 sentence could have expressed all that, and much more. Never writing like this again unless it's truly about something that simple and straightforward. (That was also 5 sentences. Abeit much more palatable, though equally unmeaningful and insignificant.)
  14. Filler: Note: to receivers of the internal communication document, this is the addition I am referring to at the end, promised to be written today. Contact me via WG account, when you've the time and interest. It's also a weekday evening and I'm tired, which means this post will be less passionate, stylish and fluid as I'd like it to be. Fortunately, this'll also help keep it simple and possibly less cynical, as my take on the topic is rather harsh, even for my usual standards. Start Main Text: The problem I have with winrate is not that I believe it to be inaccurate. I believe it absolutely possible for a single player to influence the outcome of a game. This is possible be it a random, ranked, or even clan-level game. I can provide specific examples for each, but it is not the main focus for today. Just note that I do believe winrate to be an accurate measurement of a player's skill, and a good rating of their ability to exert control over a game in WoWs. Winrate is absolutely logical. My own clan uses it as the primary measurement (though with other considerations) for entry. I personally have so much trust in it that I simply do not believe any other statistic, be it average damage, surviveability, or even total games played and multiple ship-type mastery, can tell as much about a player as his winrate statistics. It is ... difficult to refute something which is logical, accurate, and tried-and-tested to be true. When it is immovable, of a higher level than your capabilities to handle, and most importantly, still believed in by you. Before we get too far ahead, on how I became Unicum, if you so really must know, and which I'll spare you a little insight as repentance for cheating you out of a supposedly "winrate guide" as what the clickbait title implied but is not ... is as simple as growing increasingly bored with the game. As its initial surprise wears out, and more and more the mechanics are past analyzed, one plays more and more wildly, daringly, going into the toughest situations, taking the hardest responsibility and the most risky points, to gain some thrill. And (learning to) get back out of them alive. Eventually, there comes a point when the game becomes practically meaningless in mechanical terms as you now view it in pure "logic", and no longer as a game. At this point, winrate is no longer an object. At this point, you can do anything you practically want, you are Unicum. To put it even more simply, this is a "multiplayer" game. Your success will depend on other people. And other people will depend on you. If you want to become a good player, you'll have to reach this conclusion for yourself. Humans are absolutely logical, but "logic" is not logical. Excellence, accomplishment, worth, these are both logical yet astonishing. Passion, bravery, hope, desire, responsibility, knowledge, no matter how remarkable, are but madness if "illogical". Statistics can move, as statistics, worked in pure logic, can be as solid and concrete as any well written statement. But what was once remarkable, deeply moving, can also in an instant become tasteless, irrelevant, insignificant. When a statement becomes a statistic, and reverts to pure shapeless, tasteless, formless logic. And would it now be reasonable for me to simply say that Unicum, is a statement? A summary from the combination of some applied logic and the results of it? Is it not something remarkable, yet meaningless, both difficult to achieve yet unbelievably straightforward, all at the same time? Or at least, it is not wholly disgusting, demeaning, oppressing, and doesn't make sense, or so we hope? We are well aware of the derogatory toxicity that can happen when contextless judgement of player skill, based off stats, is involved. On a side note, this is also why those with (excessive amounts of) money, when approached for questioning on how they are so, do wonder. To design a great computer game is art. But so is it art to play a game. (and do do anything, really.) When logic and its application becomes so fluid it takes upon a weight of its own, when it becomes a "void". Those who can face with, adapt and flourish the most arcane constructs of logic as if their own, unquestionably have advantage over those who cannot. To be able to play a game as its creators intended, to experience the logical architecture as it was perceived by the designers themselves, see its supports, decorations, and both its areas of brightness and corners of shadows. To be able to overcome limitations out of practicality, its flaws and parts diluting the purity of the logic, the placeholders, catalysts and other insignificant parts of the design not core of what it meant to express, and still appreciate its essence. To be able to talk to, communicate with, and eventually reach a conclusion with the game, as a work of art. And so finally, it'll whisper you its potential. But the corruption. I don't just mean the pressure of having an ever-hovering cloud of judgmental, pressurizing, ugly "winrate" over your head as you try to enjoy the game; it is also easy to become "drunk with success", at the other end of the spectrum. As bluntly and harshly as I have ever been, I find my clan of Unicums is mostly static, now that they are all Unicums and irrefutably masters of this game. They, the most skilled and devoted players in this game, would have no more interest in matters of the game and its "architectural details" than ever naught. I struggle to garner interest with any amount of design discussion from them at all, but who can blame them? They are Unicum and Super-Unicum, why change the game when all is perfect? WG itself, having a good "winrate" in their business performance, can't seem to decide on what they want to do from here on, nor do they seem to have that much care in it either. At least, not what I was able to see. Except perhaps, heh, raise the "winrate" a bit higher. Now, I don't go down the street and, thinking of those with "more money" than I do, and calling them "weak, weak-willed, static, drunk from success". And I don't mean this literally with my clan or WG either. It is all very logical, it would be in fact, a surprise if it wasn't this way. Nothing is arbitrary after all. I'm not saying that back when the economy was still weak, at least people held hopes in their hearts and clear recognition of the most valuable things of humankind, and now that the economy is good all that goes out the window and anything as long as it makes money is considered "good", no, it was never this romantic, but I would certainly hope so, and thus I choose to perceive it as so. WG can stick with its small armada of advisers, and keep providing jobs to 4000 families, which is, quite honestly, the best thing in the world. So on and so forth with clan, too. But the winrate is still here, and so is the oppression, and the corruption. What is winrate? What is victory? Is having a high winrate a greater victory than winning a single game? If it so is, then what is a higher victory than even "winrate"? Keeping that winrate? Bettering the numbers? We know that in some sayings, "the only way to win is to walk away". No, for the record, WoWs is not that kind of game. Yet no, I refuse to settle for simply that "not losing is winning". What is life without its hunger, passion, and moving power? There is no true differentiation between positive or negative energy, there is only energy. The logic kind. And more energy. But what I think humans just love to do is to find ways to harness, channel, shape and control that energy. However, in this case of "winrate", it simply means that if you play to certain specific styles, standards and methods, you win! Simple. But what if it is not natural for you to play like that? What if you don't want to play like that? It is tyranny, to force specifics, and defame noncompliance, but which "winrate" is doing, by alienating some players over others for something as trivial as performing a specific mundane task correctly or not. The act of them willingly doing it, by placing trust in it and then having that trust betrayed, just makes it worse. With the "just walk away then" adding insult to injury. And thus, I decree (to myself), it is time to move past "winrate", this statistic which would go so far as to decide your victory for you. To think that in the past, due to coding limitations, it was physically impossible for a game to show a victory condition. Only a loss condition marking closure, and your quantitative skill, as score. And so, to achieve high scores. Tools, metrics, these should serve humans, not dictate them and their choices. You decide your victory, to stop, or to push the highscore even more. A game cannot decide your victory for you. To tell you "you've reached your objective, you've beaten the game!" is what they show at the end of a singleplayer game. So WoWs, with its Unicum culture and wn8 winrates statistics, which in their logical forms, being something granted the authority to tell you that "you've achieved the milestone! You've won at this game!" makes WoWs something, though a "multiplayer game", is but singleplayer in spirit. (And that is possibly the harshest thing I can say. So I apologize to the game devs for this.) But gamers, perhaps of the "old breed", who have moved past such limiting designs in spirit, that and will no longer settle for it, have found no outlet to further their skills and channel their passions. You see them doing tedious things like speedrunning, engaging purposefully in niche games of harsh conditions being demanding of skill. It is sad, like seeing captured big cats stretch, pace and endless circle inside their cages of captivity, out of misery, boredom, and frustration. That is not true spirited. And thus it is how I see winrate, and the game in its current state: something representative of the despirited, stagnant, yet to achieve victory, and misplaced, imbalanced human essence and spirit. And its spirit complains about that. Build a great fighting ship and keep it caged. It will complain, and justly so. No matter how logical the reasons for doing so, it will complain. And in doing so, it will transfer, pass on some of its spirit, bravery, desire, hope, to those who listen, perhaps those madmen who rely on doing so out of obscene intents stealing secrets of the gods ... forming the sort of peculiar symbiosis' which (are still logical). For in the absence of true genius, its closes substitute will have to do. And don't we have it in us all. For no one in their right mind would have by themselves the courage alone and whatnot for speaking like this, for this, for this, and which I had to muster up to even write things like this. The act in itself is nothing special. It is not something difficult to analyze like this. Anyone can find a flaw in anything in a split second. Anyone educated can do it. Anyone done so can also deal in pure logic, minus the corruption kind. ("To entertain a thought without accepting it.") It is a majestic right of humans to have intelligence, logic, working its pure form and formless potency. But as I said once and say again, in a scale of intelligence, clever - smart - intelligent - wise, a lifeless contraption can be "clever" and entertaining. A dog can be "smart" and trainable. Humans are intelligent; they have the ability of choice. But wisdom is to simply be, both in undeniable existence of an essence, spirit, as in and same as "clever", yet to "be" too great to have to fear harm, yet too great to need to harm anything. We value intelligence but do not worship it; intelligence if used arbitrarily is pure destruction, which is the reason we fear the rise of artificial intelligence. We fear them to have utter destructive force without limits in morals, ethics, despite possibly having flawless "logic". An arbitrary god is not wise, nor kind. If absolute intelligence can be the same as wisdom, and thus beauty, it is the same as saying absolute power is justice ... but this is not the main point of this post. What I am trying to say is, players are not some dogs, to be trained. Nor are they of "inferior intelligence", to be used in constructs like little white mice in a maze, not just manipulated, coerced, but even encouraged to be unthinking, pacified, suppressed in their humanity, killed in their motivation, unfeeling unthinking consuming, with little things like "winrate", used to drawn out the state of things while not directly addressing the problem. This is not excellence, this is not beauty, human potential, and definitely not anything close to "victory". (It is though, still, highly "logical", but then again so was WWII) What I am suggesting then, is not anything complicated or even needing this much filler (though I did name this post "winrate" so I do have to talk about winrate for a bit) but what I would like to communicate is, that instead, we can make "art". Art is interpretative. It is also many things, including that from which true classics are made of. (I know that simply the word "art", when used in any argument, sets of automatic [edited] filters in some of our heads, (mine too, I forgot to turn it off because it's a weekday, and I do prefer the firewall on for work)), but hear me out. As I said in the last paragraph, intelligence, capability in itself, is no longer anything spectacular. Anyone working in a gaming company including the engine code software engineer will be able to comment on the state of the industry and engage in talks of profound insight. Most of them will also have their own "industry trade-secret trump card design". That is fine, it may even be true. Because they are all intelligent, if you engage them in conversation they will absolutely recognize the logical fulcrums. But, instead of just having an endless cascade of complaints and listing of downfalls, like on the way to pub night after a particularly difficult work day, what truly separates the fluff from the quality, is that which can bring and provide hope, what will have enduring logical substance, of higher logical thresholds; that which is "wise", "great", that is what can truly generates value. When we visit a museum, attend a conference, visit botany gardens, engage in discourse, or just read a book by oneself, and such "gentler" pastimes, we engage in trust, not betrayed. It does not just supersede intelligence and the tedium of logic, but engages in higher forms of it, such as "intuition", "flow", "epiphany". It is timeless, providing the effects of closure and sanctuary; too great to have to fear, yet too great to need to harm; that is what is singular, definitive, "final", in the threshold of "wisdom", instead of simply "intelligent". To simply "be", instead of being in an awkward and inelegant position of being pressured to make choices simply for the sake of having choices ... To be respected (by players, for example). Great art need not be pandering. Because instead of your favor, it gains your respect. It is possible to make art in video games. It is possible to make video games which are not mutually exclusive in having "character", meaning, popularity, and being a great experience for the players while profitable for the company (and also a great experience). It is possible to have understanding and rapport between players and developers, for which game developer was not a player first? It is an art to design a game, it is also an art to play a game. Nothing is impossible, though miracles will need a bit of time. I believe "true victory" is possible. To design a game which gives the topical nature the respect it deserves. To make a game which can stand up to the most difficult demands and devastating questions, by making the most difficult demands and asking the most devastating questions, even bordering on malicious intent, while designing it . A game which we do all the maths so the players don't have to, bringing players infinitely close to the conclusion, then let them form the final part of it, instead of deciding it for them; it is not ours to judge, just as it is beyond players to judge developers' every move. Why do games like H.A.W.X. and Ace Combat win over WoWp? Why can players grow? Why can game companies also grow from their experiences? Why is it not a question of which pioneering features were redundant or not, but who successfully implemented it first? Even if not perfect, a beautiful, noble and respectful game can still be successfully designed. Whether or not it is our game which they will first remember by, is our choice to make. Cowards die many deaths before they die, but heroes live many lifes, as they lived. But the situation is not even remotely hopeless. As much as we imagine and wish for a game where players do more, be more, form friendly communities and participate in excellence beyond the norm, beyond victory, are we not already blessed with such fortunate settings? It is all around you WG, can you not see, this forum, this community? That they do support you by buying themselves a premium ship for this occasion, treating themselves to some premium time at that, and perhaps even an actual physical ship model? That despite the negatives surrounding the game, they try to play it as if it was the dream game of the world, in which they could ideally engage in game assets without having to concern themselves whether it is balanced enough or OP enough to win them a game? That the question to ask is not to ask why people engage in negative actions regardless of attempts at alleviation; but why people go out of their way to help each other, support each other, and make the game a better place to be, acting "illogically", despite all the designs encouraging them to do so otherwise? That play the game pretending it had enough depth to warrant advertisement lines such as "Make tough decisions as ye admirals of Old! Take responsibility and lead like ye admirals of Old! Throw your cap on the deck sobbing with rage, like ye admirals of Old!" And just for the record, I will re-post this excerpt from the main document which I also included in the internal-use communications document : “Original world of warships was, I admit, an outstanding game. It brought countless hours of pure joy and delight to many, many different players. It was not badly designed, nor was it poorly executed. It was simply so thrilling, so singular and definitive, that it too quickly burned through its own drive. Its simple yet elegant design was a double-edged sword. And now, almost 3 years later, it would finally seem that it inevitably approaches its ebb and dusk. Most players who had filled their need for fun had left long ago. The remaining players find it harder and harder to derive the pristine fun they had experienced at the beginning of this legacy. Most of the remaining "hardcore" fans would not desist from the game at any rate, but eventually, their patience wears thin, and the game would change from an alleviation to a burden, one which should not be forced upon even the most hardcore of fans. Considering that some had not even had the privilege to truly experience the game in alpha or beta while in its full "newness" and inconsequential delight. Nothing but innovative delight only present from purest of new experiences and fun. Thus, perhaps now, with WoWs 2, we may present players this delight, all over again.” Now, I won't go so far as say that I can claim use of a title such as "WoWs 2", just "a design for a WoWs game". And I won't go to say I can say what players deserve and not. Just that in a poignant example, though ME:Andromeda had its million sales, and FFXIII had its million sales, the people I've met agree that there is a difference, just this difference in what it means. And here I will include my post-normal amount of harshness: the other game developers know, the people in the industry know, the players know, and the gods and any other outsider observers know. Stay humble, and be truthful. May the future be kind to you and your 4000 families, may the players and the communities be friendly and supportive of you, and may the muses of the divines be favorable to you. And may we all be someday freed from the tyranny of the "winrate". (With lots of effort from WG, and company.) Also thank you for you kind attention thus far. This is quite the long post. Also, I know, I know, I used to take pride in the fact that I liked to say in chat, back in beta, when misbalanced CV matches happened, "Because life is fair" and gloatingly add that people did quiet down from that, but that was without better alternatives. To justify it is not impossible, but will just add more needless complexity ... just that now, with a small book's worth of notes behind me, and seeing WoWs getting slightly improved, I would like to try for more possibilities. Also to those still asking for the "how to improve winrate guide", did you even read what I typed in this post at all? I will proveed to XD
  15. KarmaQU_EU

    For want of a good WoWs game

    This topic is dedicated to sharing public notes of what improvements I believe may be applicable, or drawing from references in other games, used as insight to improve WoWs. While I had planned to complete a more thorough and structured investigation before posting concrete material, the release of naval battles by WT has alerted me to the need of hasty action. Thus I will be releasing what preliminary plans as come by. Before I completely lose enthusiasm, loyalty, and interest in WoWs. I also can't be bothered with commercial discretion, even though my original plan was. Evident as I am posting on an open forum. It will not be thoroughly edited and reviewed, just loose public notes with bits of stuff. I project therefore, regrettably, that unless the situation turns for the better, what worth I hold in this venture will be less and less until I eventually die out of WoWs entirely. Good day. Edit: Content will come as they come. I can't promise I'll churn out content as if I was being payed for it, and as if in an ideal world, be perfectly dedicated and enthusiastic about it facing overwhelming friendly support and feedback. If you are going to make posts, please let it be constructive posts or referrals to constructive posts from elsewhere in the forum. Rest be assured that while it may be hanging by a thread, I am perfectly in support of and loyal to WoWs for the time being, regardless of what I put in my posts.