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KarmaQU_EU

Reservations against a Bloom-based CV action-scheme design

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A Bloom-based CV control scheme can be visualized with the "AA bubbles" ships expunge as spatial "blooms" which the player must guide their planes to weave through and perform a strike on the ship. Different placement angles of ships will incur different setups of "bloom", and different AA protocols such as activating defensive AA will also cause changes to the form and intensity of these blooms.

 

CV diversity can be achieved by taking a leaf out of WoWp's book, planes will vary depending on speed, toughness (for when you do plough through the AA blooms), agility to weave and turn around those blooms, and general handling (such as when damaged). Variable handling can also be achieved depending on squadron size, squadron strike protocols/formation, and actual strike procedure will obviously differ by loadout as well.

 

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All in all this is actually quite a solid retake of "CV gameplay" for WoWs, and I cannot say I do not think there is a future in a "bloom-based" gameplay. For instance, it will add vertical spatial scale to the aerial sphere which will make it much more atmospheric, while former CV sphere had only horizontal space of activity. This will truly make planes "3D", and make the gameplay much more resembling the WoWs trailers where planes dodge up and down to strike a ship amidst cross-firing AA. It will probably be quite entrancing and enjoyable for a lot of players. And it will fit the arcade-action style gameplay of WoWs better than an RTS style CV gameplay, in compatibility and similarity of logic.

 

However, many problems still remain in case of this scheme of CV rework being considered as the final direction. The most prominent one being the CV still has difference in plane types. How to manage all those plane types and multiple squadrons while engaging in this "1st person" mode may prove more tedious to design for than reasonable. If automation and dumb-A.I. is used, its fairness and competitiveness will be a large question as well. Thus, control capability, and how smooth, easy and intuitive, and graceful all this is designed, is a large concern.

 

A second main concern is how this is still a very weak form in its expressiveness and potency. "Arcade" is often used as a derogatory term within WoWs for good reason. It may also be less fitting for immersion by player agency than optimal, i.e. when players play a ship they imagine themselves as the ship, but when they play a CV do they imagine themselves as the planes, or as the launch ship, or as neither? Or in another perspective, the planes are by extension loadout and ordinance. Their roles is to weave through the hindering and troublesome AA blooms as torpedoes would around obstacles, and shells through armour, to their intended target. But when we play as ships, we don't imagine ourselves embodied in the shells and torpedoes we launched, but as the base entity which is responsible for the possibility of the projection of force.

 

The third main concern is still perceptions of fairness. In yet another perspective, from the surface-ships on the receiving end of an airstrike under the bloom-based CV design, would they perceive their AA blooming versus the plane maneuvering-to-strike as "equals"? Is action inputted versus action required balanced and fair? This concerns perceptions of fairness, aka. the no-skill clicker hiding safely at 30km while using the equivalent of "tv-guided missiles/drones" to harass us. However, the current CV design suffers in this category as well, but mutually inclusive: current CV gameplay too often directly correlates input with reward, and skill, instead of intent, with input. Especially when the placement of that "skill" is misguided.

 

And the personal concern I have is strong reservations against action focused CV because this very design direction had been considered by by me as far back as when I wrote the notes, and it was discarded, after lots more reasoning and concluding with more reasons than I can bother to remember atm or actually present here. I personally do not like it. It leaves little room for imagination, elation, in extension immersion and pure experiencing of a game. A shallow game lacks endurance and will fail to strike passion within players in a healthy manner. So even though by mimicking the feeling of the planes in WoWs trailers this action-based CV design can be claimed as more "atmospheric", heady, and direct, it will quickly become stale and players will see through its limitations and futility much too easily, precisely because it is too direct in both concept and control. I fear it will have no "mystery", no 'magic', no charm, and no profound revelations to the context (of naval history) at a meaningful, alive kind of level. It will offer no true "elation", purity and transcendence in concept of gameplay, only excitement and cheap thrills. And if even the design itself is too afraid to say its own conclusion out loud, I doubt players will do it for it.

 

So while some clear-cut problems with the current RTS style CV control-scheme can be addressed by changing it to a "bullet-hell" resemblance of an action-based control scheme, whether this is actually good for the game itself and not just as a solution for CVs only, and whether this will make the game in whole better amongst other games out there, still has a lot to be desired and worked for.

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Players
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Anything short of giving ships a way to define those blooms in real time will always be regarded in the same way it is now.

 

Was this a leak?

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Beta Tester
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Base Ship (= CV)

Up to x squads with different ways to do their job...

One player...

 

Anyone seeing a possible problem of how this would be supposed to work in "action mode"?

 

When You only can control one squad at a time, how would one do a "hammer&anvil" attack? Or uses fighters to keep the enemy fighters from molesting the bombers when they drop their loads?

 

Would be about the same, as if the player would have to choose each turret of a ship manually to aim it, shoot it and reload it... lots of "action" but an utterly stupid mechanic.

Of course, as a way to keep players from playing CVs at all, such an "action concept" might work... and with no CVs in the game, there won't be any need for further balancing. Which of course makes certain setups for ships - Cleveland AA setup anyone? - also utterly useless...

 

Instead of changing the way CVs work completely, there should be just some modification on how AA works - and a slight reduction of effectiveness maybe - and the strafing skill should be removed, as it is the main reason for unicorns dominating not so unicornish players that much. A good player with some clicking skill being able to utterly destroy enemy plane groups - helped by a mediocre UI that sometimes doesn't want to do what the player commands it to do - has just too much influence on a battle.

Fighter actions should be more randomised and the strength of fighters should be more equal.

 

And for more options on bomber squads, why not implement different drop mechanics, where not only the angle of attack has to be chose, but also the starting height of the plane squad?

In reality, TBs were a lot easier to defend against than DBs, due to the fact that they had to come in low and slow (until technical advances allowed for steeper torpedo drops..) whereas the divebombes attacked from way above, which made it hard for some AA guns to even reach them due to the angles they yould be set up to. So setting TBs to either go in slow and low (greatest effectiveness, but high loss of planes chance) or fast and steep (lower chance to lose planes, but torps might explode prematurely..) and a similiar mechanism for DBs could be an option.

 

And if the "Bloom" concept is about planes dodging the AA bubbles and the player's skill in recognizing these bubbles and proper targets is to make the difference, a reduction in effectiveness of bombers by giving them a higher rate of losses due to attack type and less tight drop patterns could be a solution.

 

But I'm sure I can trust WG to find a "solution" that will utterly eff up CV gameplay and in the end will change nothing, as some players will be able to play good with it and others won't and many will just stop playing CVs...

 

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Beta Tester
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Bump. This is not necro. Not a single word is changed. And I mean every single word now as I had meant them months ago.

 

This CV rework is at best, an “alpha” quality feature. Decade old games can surpass this level of design. Nowadays, this level of design is barely passable even for indies. 

 

I waited 3 years for this. I am disappointed.

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When we play an artillery ship, it is passable immersion to imagine the ship is real given its solitary in-game forms, firing its guns, because what do you expect, the ships to glow and hover and do a dance?

 

But when we imagine CVs, even the player who is LEAST knowledgeable of history can imagine CV planes dogfighting, swarming, fighting heroically, each pilot a hero. NOT whatever is here now, planes soft-locked into a rigid formation clicking ships into grief.

 

The current format of CV combat kills that immersion adamantly. This is my main argument against it.

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[BGNAV]
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They already gave a lot of money for what they have done in terms of salaries for employees, they will launch it even if half the players leave so no point in arguing i'm afraid. I don't like it the slightest as well but I guess when the time comes I will find different game to play. 

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3 hours ago, KarmaQU_EU said:

Bump. This is not necro. Not a single word is changed. And I mean every single word now as I had meant them months ago.

 

This CV rework is at best, an “alpha” quality feature. Decade old games can surpass this level of design. Nowadays, this level of design is barely passable even for indies. 

 

I waited 3 years for this. I am disappointed.

 

Flambass said this in his Video "It looks like Mobile Phone quality gameplay" and I agree with both of you, for the "great CV rework" this look fairly poor quality so far, not visually but conceptually.

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