Issues with incoming IC/OOC system


#1

NOTE: I am a player who is both in full support of the Vital Combat system and who has not spend a single dollar on her pet.

With the announcement of the upcoming Testing session, I am under the assumption that changes to pets and combat in general will be rolled out sooner rather than later. However, despite my overall positive outlook on the update to the combat system and the intention behind it, I think it is incredibly unwise to put them out in the game’s current state, especially the endgame.

The Issue:
For most of the game’s content, an IC/OOC system would be incredibly beneficial; dungeons like the Abyss of Demons could actually become challenging locales that required more than one beefed-up knight to steamroll through. Even higher-end midgame dungeons like the Ocean Trench and Tomb of The Ancients would regain some of that intrinsic danger that they originally held back in 2012. However, the problem lies in some of the more recent endgame content, specifically that DECA has introduced. Understandably, most of these dungeons are balanced around pets as they currently are. A perfect example of this is the Marble Colossus: bullets filling the entire screen so much so that sometimes you have to rely on heals from healing classes and, more importantly, your pet. Time and time again in Halls raids, it’s called that the most important shots to dodge are the blue spirals that inflict Pet Stasis, because the sheer amount of bullets is too much without that cushion of your pet. That’s not a result of me being a “bad player”, that is the patterns of the fight having little to no recognizable patterns to avoid. Oryx 3 is another great, more recent example. The only way that most players, even at the highest level of gameplay, are able to survive his exalted Celestial phase is by dodging shots that disable your pet.

I believe that before the changes to pets are implemented, many of Realm’s endgame dungeons need a big overhaul. The Void Entity is a fantastic example of what bosses should look like; fast, high damaging shots, but in a small amount and in recognizable patterns that encourage precise dodging. A fight like the Marble Colossus or the Killer Bee Queen where you will constantly be taking damage that puts you in an In Combat state (which, for players without a divine pet, is essentially a 7 second pet stasis), absolutely requires some change to encourage skill rather than tanking. To update the way a game is played, one must change the players and their opponents; fighting a boss that was conceptualized and continues to be a response to the meta that it was created in despite that meta changing is frustrating and not the way this fantastic update should go out.

tl;dr - DECA needs to take some more time to balance the game around these combat changes without just unceremoniously shoving them in and leaving us to fend for ourselves.


#2

Hot tip: play the actual game with these changes before making paragraph long posts.
Support them with recorded gameplay and you’ve got yourself a much stronger point that might just convince peeps at Deca to make changes.

Until then, please take a look at this post.


#3

First off, we don’t even know what the new vital combat system will even look like. After the first testing session for it, they heavily implied that they would be making big changes to it, so I think your concern about it being unbalanced with the current endgame is coming a little too soon. Let’s see what it looks like on public testing first maybe?

Additionally, Void Entity isn’t really a well designed boss from a lot of standpoints. It’s currently the only boss in the game that is, for all intents and purposes, unsoloable. That’s pretty poor design and will only be fixed when the exponential HP scaling found in Oryx 3 is implemented across the board in all dungeons. Additionally, there are several phases at the start of the fight that include high density bullets with a ton of status effects such as paralyze and petrify which make it impossible to dodge any other incoming bullets. I’m not sure if I’m seeing your point about the Void fight versus something like Marble Colossus.

Also, given the name of the “vital combat” system and the backlash towards the last public testing of IC/OOT, I think their goal for this system is likely to just improve the usefulness of vitality as a stat rather than completely destroy our pets that many have put time and money into.

My guess would be that your vitality stat is greatly increased while your pet’s abilities are greatly nerfed when in combat. And then when out of combat, it reverts back to normal. This would make sense given the name of “vital combat” and would allow for endgame dungeons to continue to be on the same level as they are now while also significantly leveling the playing field for those without a decent pet.

So calm your worries. I think we need to wait and see what the testing session has to offer before we freak out and start getting upset with our “DECA THIS DECA THAT” panicking.


#4

I would have thought this is obvious, but IC/OOC is meant to address a glaring problem with the current game, that OP pets render much of the game trivial.

That’s why current endgame dungeons are so hard, to cancel out the benefit of pets, either by layering damage on so much that pet heal can’t keep up, unless you dodge most of it, or by introducing new status effects like pet stasis, silence, and making others like quiet, sick much more pervasive to directly nullify pet abilities. So once IC/OOC is ready I am sure they will simultaneously rebalance much of the content that has gotten out of whack due to OP pets.

One interesting way is through the introduction of temporary immunities for enemies. Right now you can’t perma-stasis enemies you can perma-stun, perma-paralyse etc. So lots of bosses have immunities, to stop Knights just walking up to them and making the fight trivial.

If they give all status effects a cooldown, so enemies are immune for a short while it has the potential to make the game harder. But it can be combined with removing permanent immunities so enemies, even ones like MBC, might be susceptible to stun to give you temporary reprieve until the cooldown kicks in. This has the potential to make battles much more strategic, as abilities need to be more carefully timed, not just spammed as much as your pet allows.


#5

This was actually tested alongside IC/OoC in one of that first sessions - including a player-side buff in a similar vein, albeit limited to Slow, Paralyze, and Stun (maybe petrify as well? not sure).

Thing is that they then removed all immunities from everything, which…uh…breaks stuff. Badly.
Think not just Forgotten King, but also Void Entity’s multi-entity phase (what if they all get stuck in the same spot?), Killer Bee Queen’s hyperneedle attack (getting paralyzed before she throws the nests? have fun trying to pass right over one! getting stunned during the attack? I hope you remember how fast it rotates!), or worst of all: segments of the Crystal Worm Mother getting paralyzed.

However, it can also trivialilze other things, such as MBC’s Cores - there’s a good reason why they’re paralyze immune - or different parts of the KBQ’s fight.
I really hope they take a good look at handling it well, because it’s going to bee a lot of work to go by each and every enemy to see what breaks, and what doesn’t…
At least we now have Exalt’s immunity indicators to slightly assist…but those don’t update with immunities applied to behaviors (think Cube God and Skull Shrine’s stun immunity in their 2nd phase).

Blah, that’s enough off-topiccing! I’m just hyped to see another PT and hope to see more people this time >u<


#6

Ah yes, oryx 3 getting paralyzed while doing celestial


#7

Not at all. I see IC/OOC as not just an isolated change but as part of a much wider endeavour to address the imbalances that have arisen since the introduction of pets. And exactly how they do that is important, and very relevant.

I did not spend much time with the first IC/OOC test so did not get as far as any of the event bosses you describe. I imagine removing all their immunities was a first pass at testing it, to see how the cooldowns worked. Some will still need permanent immunities, for mechanical reasons to stop them being slowed/paralysed and breaking things, or as even being able to stun them temporarily makes them too easy.

But I think a lof of permanent immunities can go, and be replaced by being susceptible to the debuff but with a cooldown. It makes for a much more strategic and interesting game,


#8

Speaking from experience from the PT session a year ago, endgame wasn’t that much harder, rather it just required a bit more careful of an approach, dodging smaller bullets that usually you might tank, backing off to focus on dodging more sometimes. People like me and unibro were able to do all of endgame just fine, and I get that we are not representative of the skill level of every player, but we were also solo which means the more people you add the easier time it should be for everyone else. I don’t expect everyone to be on the level of soloing endgame after the changes, but thats fine, just give it a real shot before making judgement, as it seemed very few people did last year.

And by real shot I dont mean one or two dungeons, you really need to get a feel for the system, it may take a bit of a different approach than you are used to but I really don’t think you will find it that bad if you put in the time. They have said its coming anyway so you may as well take your time to get used to it.

Edit: small note, its also really hard to know if a dungeon needs rebalancing off of just a few people and one testing session, it may take more time to truly decided if something needs rebalancing or if people just aren’t used to the new difficulty yet, so nerfing enemies ahead of time may result in making someting easier that didn’t even need to be.


#9

I’m just glad it’s not called “the EXALTED combat system”. deca’s abuse of the word “exalt” reminds me of when nintendo was slapping “new” on everything.

anyone who believes this has not tried the system or thoroughly read the original PT thread, which in turn suggests they don’t actually know what they’re talking about. the overwhelming majority of opinions on ic/ooc are based on a skim of the OP of the PT thread, instead of a thorough read and some actual experience from testing. even if we were to blandly work with raw numbers alone and never actually put in the experience, this assertion is still wrong because you’re leaving out VIT scaling. 40 VIT makes it last 5.4s and 75 VIT makes it last 4s.

I’ll admit it, I still haven’t ever tried it myself either. despite being a closed tester at the time, I still never tried it out and I didn’t do squat during the PT session. but that was because I don’t give a fuck about rotmg. if the game was permanently shut down tomorrow I wouldn’t be sad about it. what bothers me is all of the people who do claim to care about the game who still can’t be bothered to take the time to be properly informed of the game-altering system they claim to have strong opinions about.



I have a bit of a story for anyone interested that illustrates for me just how important it is to playtest instead of only working with theory: those of you who have been around for long enough might remember I used to be extremely active in the #ideas section on this forum and was an avid dungeon designer. you may also remember that there was a bit of a switch in my personality at some point from “Clock Tower is pretty great, isn’t it?” to “Clock tower is fucking garbage”. why was that? part of it was things in my personal life had changed me and I resented the asshole I used to be at the time, but the other major part of it was about seeing the disconnect between theory and playtesting firsthand.

the dungeon document I released after Clock Tower, The Stone Caves of Nores 2 (a woeful mouthful of a name if we’re being honest), came preprepared with full behavior XML made using deca’s public XML documentation. now this was all before I joined UGC, I had no way of testing anything I made at the time. I prided myself on The Stone Caves of Nores 2 at the time because I felt I had put far more energy and thought into actually making something good rather than the approach used by the Clock Tower, which was mostly edgy bullet spam. So when I finally did get accepted into UGC, I was very excited to put all this XML into practice, so I immediately put it on the testing server and got to work. and you know what I found?

it was completely unplayable.

it was the jankiest, most unpolished piece of trash I had ever seen. there was so much wrong with it, everything was either laughably trivial or blatantly unfair. it was awful. and remember, this was the thing I had put the most thought into, and probably more than most other people too. but that’s the problem: thought and theory alone doesn’t get you anywhere. this is why I stopped reading #ideas, after having that revelation I knew that only the higher-level concepts were worth paying attention to, but the big successful ideas that people looked up to (lost halls, beyond, and clock tower) had set a precedent that going into excessive detail on enemy AI and bullet stats is how you made something look “good”. so all of the high-level concepts just got buried under piles and piles of meaningless BS that wasn’t actually much use after all.

I eventually did make something “good” by iterating over that baseline by making tweaks and most importantly playtesting it. I even came up with a better name: the Soulsteel Shrine. sadly the Soulsteel Shrine was never finished, and it never ever will be. I stopped working on it over a year ago, long before I left UGC. that was because on some level I understood that no matter how “good” anything I made was, it would never actually be good as long as it was a part of a game as terrible as this one, but that’s a rant for another time. I’ll probably repurpose some of the content into a future game (games?) I plan to make one day, I do like some of the concepts even if rotmg’s low-res art style and janky meta would never have done them proper.

so the lesson to take away from all this is: PLAY the new combat system this time around! you cannot get a proper understanding of what’s being worked on by reading the explanation page alone.


#10

That’s what I’ve found with many ideas documents. Even Puffagod has many great ideas, but there were times that I’d look at enemies and how they would act _to the best of my knowledge _, and I hardly had to use my imagination sometimes. Heck, we had a great time looking into some very minor rebalancing, but a glaring thing I called him out for was his SPIRIT boss fight in the Elder Realms! I loved the concept of the fight, but with all of the minion spawns, that would be the most nonsensical wall of bullets and bodies anyone would have ever seen with the kinds of enemies and their behaviors clustered together, especially in an arena that size.

I guess the point of that is, it’s fun to offer ideas, but yeah, don’t try fighting over the semantics of anything until it’s put out there.


As for the rest of the thread, many of the good points are already taken. I’ve anticipated the change, but a lot of us are going to have to deal with the transition as the devs tackle anything that inevitably breaks down. Transitions take sacrifice, if my life has attested to anything. We’re just going to be the generation of players that takes the brunt of the Great Purge, a likely lengthy process of not patching, but undoing mistakes that have ailed this game for so long.

I’m looking forward to this journey.


#11

I’d say the opposite is true, Marble Colossus and Killer Bee Queen are perfect examples of a hard bullet hell, but they get completely trivialized by divine pets, they’re not balanced around them. While Void Entity is basically just a midgame boss with bloated damage that instapops you but is super easy to dodge, making it a boring and generic instapop disher that doesn’t even necessarily have harder attacks than even Daichi, just more damage, and that’s lazy.

People have petless solo’d every boss you mentioned here, it is just skill, not saying you’re bad, but it is just a matter of skill to do it. The thing is, contrary to popular belief most people in raids are actually bad, because if you don’t need to dodge you don’t practice it, and don’t get better at it.

The takeaway from this is that, if anything, endgame bosses should stay the same difficulty, except for Void Entity which honestly needs a redesign to have harder patterns that don’t pop you, like MBC, i really can’t think of any bosses that need nerfs because of a pet nerf, pets, and especially divines, are overpowered beyond belief, especially how much you can ability spam.