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Gobias

Member Since 03 Jun 2013
OFFLINE Last Active Sep 16 2018 09:28 PM

#1034357 Halo: The Master Chief Collection Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 07 August 2018 - 04:38 PM

LOL the hilarious part to me is if they are dead set on keeping AR/SMG starts, the other solution to the problem would be to take all BRs, Carbines and Snipers off the maps when its AR start. Thats the only sane option, and no way they will do that either.

I think you’re missing the point. How are new players supposed to have fun with the sniper when someone with an OP battle rifle is descoping them from across the map?
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#1034117 Halo Infinite Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 02 August 2018 - 03:25 PM

It could easily be indicated by simple texturing like how white ledges in many games indicate something can be climbed (Tomb Raider came to mind immediately). Clamber cannot be executed on ledges above your head.

Stabilize - Decoupled from Zoom. Simply press jump again. crouch spamming doesn't raise you higher. Potential problem if thrust were replaced with a wall kick - how does the game know which action you are trying to execute? As we saw with Melee and Ground Pound, multi-use buttons can cause issues with delay while the game figures out what you want. Would you be allowed to wall kick, then stabilize?

You could tie the wall kick to releasing the jump button near a wall, so you would just hold it after jumping. At that point, I would just choose one of the mechanics and ditch the other, though.
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#1034097 Halo Infinite Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 02 August 2018 - 01:08 PM

This idea would replace sprint and/or thrust. If you’ve never played a shooter with strafe running, it’s pretty cool. You run about 40% faster diagonally because your speed is not normalized. This means you can essentially sprint in four directions with a single input and without any animation. But the more interesting part is that you have insane strafing capability. You can outstrafe two people at the same time if one is in front of you and the other is to the side, since you appear to be moving at “normal” speed from both perspectives. It’s super useful in FFA when someone tries to get an easy kill from the side. If you have a really slow RoF weapon or are reloading, you can also strafe 45 degrees to your opponent to buy a little time.

Since being able to move that much faster would still stretch the maps and have a lot of the negative effects of sprint (which is about 10% faster than running in H5), you could restrict the speed to be constant in all directions but leave the acceleration untouched. This means you could still have a very effective short strafe as viewed from two perpendicular directions.

Alternatively, you could separate this acceleration feature from the WASD system and add it as an acceleration buff that works at all angles on the control stick. When you accelerate in any direction, the game would ask how perpendicular that direction is to your current speed (a cross product, for people who remember math), then apply a proportional buff. This would make circle strafing much snappier, for example.

Only certain ledges are clamberable, as chosen by the map maker. And clamber takes a lot longer.

This would be great for helping make maps ability-proof. I was in a Discord server where someone was asking for advice on a map he thought was pretty polished, and one guy said “yeah, found a way to get out of the map where you sprint slide jump thrust ground pound stall thrust cancel stabilize mason jump clamber.” I would not want to be a forger in Halo 5 lol.
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#1034028 Halo Infinite Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 01 August 2018 - 03:52 PM

@Cavik

 

You seem to be missing the point of my suggested compromises. They’re meant to complement the basic movement, not overtake it. The wall kick would offer you more combat strafing options while having zero negative impact on the game. When you jump near a wall, you can kick off of it at any point, or choose not to. It’s situational enough so that it doesn’t happen all the time—just like crouching or jumping in a gunfight in the original Halo games. Is it “too situational”? That’s impossible to quantify, really. I personally think it would be a useful mechanic as is, but making the speed increase be twice that of base movement would probably still not break map pathing nearly as much as thrust, and using it for escape or faster traversal would still not be viable since the fastest routes run parallel to walls, not perpendicular.

 

Better air control would mean increasing it to something still less than grounded acceleration. It’s enough acceleration to alter your trajectory significantly without being ridiculous like the scenario you imagined. You might be able to accelerate to full base movement speed from a standing jump. I think the upper bound would be the ability to accelerate to full base movement speed by the time you reach the ground after running and jumping in the opposite direction. Obviously you playtest this so it feels good. For good measure, I’ll clarify that the air control would not make you go faster if you’re already at full base speed.

 

Thrust will always be inherently out of place in Halo. Anything that has a cooldown timer will feel that way. Anything that removes your ability to deal damage will feel that way. Halo is based on balancing factors that feel organic and situational. It’s like if 343 realized no-scopes with the Halo 4 beam rifle were too easy and, instead of removing the bullet magnetism, decided to “balance” it by adding a charge meter that only fills up when you scope in. Not only would this not solve the problem (the feeling of noscope hits being undeserved), it would restrict players and make the game clunkier, less fluid. What possible balance could there be to thrust that doesn’t feel as unnatural as the mechanic itself? Each band-aid solution has its own negative. Halo is about seamless combination of movement and combat. Thrust is about increasing the separation between movement and combat.


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#1033981 Halo Infinite Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 31 July 2018 - 05:38 PM

What I like about thrust is that it adds more verticality to gunfights. In past Halos, jumping while in the middle of a gunfight often ends up being a bad idea because it puts you on a predictable trajectory you can't deviate from. It makes you an easier target. Because of that, jumping in the middle of a gunfight is much less common in those games than it is in H5, where you have a way of altering your trajectory in mid-air.

There’s a simple solution to this: just increase the air control. Here are some reasons this is better than thrust.
• Can’t be abused to escape battles
• Can’t be abused to break map pathing, except if you incorporated some subtle trick jumps intentionally designed for it
• Doesn’t rely on a cooldown ability, so it feels like a natural enhancement and doesn’t put you at a huge disadvantage getting into back-to-back fights
• More subtle direction change makes aim adjustments less jarring and doesn’t overshadow strafing
• Much simpler input so you don’t feel compelled to claw or buy a modded controller
• I could go on.

In Halo 5, I often see people jumping when they've already used their thrust and don't have it available--which is a mistake because it puts them on a predictable trajectory just like in past Halos, but I understand why they do it. Jumping during a gunfight is more common in Halo 5--so common that it becomes habit. That makes me think the addition of thrust also adds a bit to the knowledge gap and a little more need for self-awareness/self-control. The whole "Don't jump while in a gunfight" rule no longer applies in Halo 5, it's now: "Don't jump in a gunfight WHEN you don't have thrust" instead, and that seems to be harder for people to remember and creates a habit that's hard to break.

I don’t see how this adds any depth to the game other than the helpless feeling of “my ability is on cooldown now I have to play the game completely differently and hope I don’t get wrecked by someone who just came off respawn.” People jump so much even without thrust because they’re hoping the momentary lapse in target acquisition causes their opponent to windmill because of the aiming system.

I think a lot of the problems people have with thrust right now isn't with the mechanic itself but how it's implemented. Couldn't the increase of auto-aim necessary to kill a thrusting opponent be negated by a decrease in thrust's speed? I don't see why not.

The problem is that thrust is fundamentally a different beast. It’s the only movement ability that can be used in every situation with absolutely no tradeoff. There’s never a time when using thrust puts you at a disadvantage—it’s straight-up better than any other strafing tactic. Jumping throws off your opponent’s aim at the cost of a predictable trajectory, and it’s best used in close range as a mixup. Crouching moves your head hurtbox really quickly at the cost of slowing movement, and it’s best used in close range. Thrust is good at every range and has no tradeoff other than the opportunity cost of using it a few seconds later. It’s a prime example of an overbearing mechanic.

So, if thrust is implemented in such a way that it doesn't force the devs to increase auto aim, that means the typical strafe would still have the same effectiveness as it always has. Right?

Not exactly. Looking outside the vacuum of your proposition, thrust still increases escapability and makes players move around the map faster, so map designers increase sightlines and open up areas to counteract thrust. The average engagement range increases, meaning opponents have to adjust their aim less to account for strafing. And a lower percentage of close-quarters engagements results in fewer viable strafing tactics. The expansion of maps just increases the reliance on thrust. This all boils down to the main idea in my post, which is that having two distinct speeds/accelerations will always result in something feeling off. You could decrease the delta between the two, much like with sprint, but it’s just a fact you can’t get rid of.

You might be thinking, “wow, this guy won’t come to a compromise on anything.” But that’s not true. Besides increasing air control, which would be sick, I’m a fan of the wall kick idea that I’ve been bringing up for the last couple years. Here it is.

Function
• Press jump while airborne in contact with a wall
• A wall kick instantly redirects your movement perpendicular to that wall to be equal to base movement speed

Benefits
• Doesn’t introduce a separate speed
• Can’t be used for escape or to break map pathing
• Situational rather than omnipresent/overbearing
• Doesn’t require an extra button that clutters the control scheme
• Improves the utility of jumping in fights
• Doesn’t require a cooldown timer

Hm, same benefits as increasing air control. I wonder if combining the two would make for a genuine improvement to Halo that doesn’t divide the community yet again....
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#1033927 Halo Infinite Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 31 July 2018 - 02:11 AM

I agree with alot of your points about Halo, but disagree here. Many high-level competitive games such as Fighting games, UT series, "there is more but my brain is blanking". feature an "evade" mechanic or dash mechanic along with much more complex movement chains just as wall-jumping and terrain sliding. It is essentially a counter-move for projectile fire, grenades, and a juke at the top of the strafe. Now in UT it doubles as a main staple of the movement system to gain momentum and dodge the many projectile fire weapons(ie Shock combo) that is featured in the game. However in UT, you are not forced to sheathe your weapon and thus lose your ability to make an offensive attack, in a way its more like jousting than evading in that sense. This allows it to be an offensive move, as well as a defensive one giving it the essential two-way balance that is integral to any type of Arena-shooter style encounter.

In Halo, as is the MAIN issue with sprint, it is almost purely a defensive move which in turn has the effect of slowing gameplay down, allowing mistakes to go unpunished which ends up feeling "cheap" to the player who worked so hard to get in the perfect killing window in order to kill his enemy before he can escape. This leads to unsatisfying games of cat-and-mouse where the mouse too often wins the encounter based on the poor implementation of these movement mechanics as one-sided, game slowing, defensive mechanics. However, if thrust was made to be more like a "joust-evade" like it is in UT and other titles, along with sprint being either eliminated or fixed in the same way to allow shooting while sprinting, the majority of the balance issues would be eliminated I believe and the essential balance of the "offensive-defensive" dynamic in an Arena shooter would be mostly restored or at least greatly improved.


Improved? Certainly, but it’s a low bar. I don’t think a thrust mechanic will ever work well with Halo. A huge reason is the aim assist balance, as Hard Way mentioned. Let’s say you have the auto aim balanced perfectly for the strafe. Now you add thrust and have two choices: 1) change nothing; 2) increase auto aim to accommodate the effectiveness of thrust.

If you don’t increase auto aim, thrust is now practically guaranteed to let you dodge a shot for free. At best, the firefight is now just prolonged artificially as both sides dodge a shot for free. At worst, this compounds the problem of thrust used as an escape option because it makes you far too hard to hit. If you increase auto aim (as they did in H5), you mitigate the escaping issue but now have invalidated the basic strafe. Unless thrust recharges insanely fast, you put players at a massive disadvantage in 2v1s, not to mention completely changing the rhythm of Halo’s “joust” (a term used by a 343 designer in one of the vidocs) to revolve around one singular mechanic rather than a variety of strafing techniques and mixups. Strafing in Halo 5 is literally defined by how and when you use thrust, it’s ridiculous. And thrust’s massive importance for both strafing and general map movement really highlights how modern Halo is all about tradeoffs between movement and action, whereas the defining aspect of classic Halo was the unity of the two.

I could go on and on. I really don’t like the mechanic and I don’t see how similar mechanics in other games justifies its inclusion in Halo.
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#1033920 Halo Infinite Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 30 July 2018 - 10:45 PM

I don’t know if I would prefer infinite sprint, but I hate having to spam a button just to move faster. It makes the experience a chore. It’s also a big reason why I prefer Quake to Unreal Tournament, because strafejumping/bunnyhopping feels way less ADHD than constantly dodging. Same reason I hate sprint/thrust/slide in Halo 5.

Honestly, once you learn how to strafejump, every other movement system feels braindead and repetitive. Might as well just have basic movement. I know this post isn’t remotely constructive but I’m not at that point yet, still in vent mode.
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#1033814 Halo Infinite Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 29 July 2018 - 11:11 AM

tbh that’s bad game design if you can finish a mission without firing a single shot😅

He said areas, not missions. But I still disagree. Being able to complete parts of the game without firing a shot shows that the game is flexible enough to be approached with different tactics. Forcing the player to kill something or complete a task in a limited way is definitely not a prerequisite to good game design. Besides, you can actually complete all of the main Halo games without shooting (not counting actual forced kills like in Halo 3).

Halo 1 is unique because it actually encourages you not to shoot your weapon all the time and kill everything. One of the characters tells you to keep moving while fighting the Flood. They’re straight up telling you to try to speedrun Flood levels and avoid getting into unnecessary fights.
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#1033751 Halo Infinite Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 27 July 2018 - 05:41 PM

Some people think the classic art style in the tech demo means that Infinite will have classic gameplay. That’s a doubly optimistic view: first, that enhanced mobility is gone; second, that 343 can properly deliver on this. My thoughts aren’t related to Favyn’s recent video, but I do recommend you check that out as it’s a good watch. I’ve been thinking recently about 343’s track record with classic gameplay, trying to figure out what we would most likely get considering past offerings. Here is the list of 343’s record with the classics.

  • Reach, CE Anniversary: the pistol has bloom and a Reach-level of auto aim. No attempt to make the strafe not be sluggish.

  • Halo 4 Legendary Slayer: sprint still exists. Originally AR starts, if I recall, leading to absurd snowballing. BR still has spread and high auto aim.

  • Halo 2 Anniversary: sluggish strafe compared to the original. Just as high bullet magnetism despite modern connection speeds and a modern netcode. Grenade hitmarkers and indicators!

  • Halo CE on MCC: actually a rip of Halo PC, which completely gutted the original weapon sandbox.

  • Halo 5, CE Throwback: the pistol has bloom and a Halo 5 level of auto aim. Spartan abilities included. Strafing unmodified.

  • Halo 5, H3 Throwback: Spartan abilities removed, but base movement speed decreased. Battle Rifle magnetism original at stock Halo 5 levels, subsequently decreased with introduction of classic random spread.

Am I missing anything? Let’s not forget that Halo 5 itself was pitched as a return to form, with “equal starts.” The question is, if we do get a “classic” Halo in Infinite, will it be the crucial step the franchise desperately needs, or will it be another snorefest of a game with the same basic set of cookie-cutter aimbot weapons.

 

Their track record doesn't inspire hope.


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#1033588 Halo: The Master Chief Collection Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 24 July 2018 - 10:13 PM

Remember when we asked 343 to get rid of hit markers on mcc ce and they just lowered the volume because they couldnt figure out how to remove them.

god bless.

Exactly as you remember it
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#1033582 Halo: The Master Chief Collection Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 24 July 2018 - 09:05 PM

Excluding Midship from H2A is one of the most lol things 343 has ever done. That's like opening a McDonald's and not serving french fries.


They didn’t want H2A to have a map they were banking on to feature in Halo 5... twice.
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#1033509 Halo Infinite Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 23 July 2018 - 03:36 PM

Hrmm how would you (or anyone) define "escapability"?  I find that to be a very hard thing to quantify.  How close to cover should someone have to be to be "smartly close to cover" or "Stupidly out in the open"?  In my mind you have n+1 shots to kill a player before them escaping becomes the fault of the player missing shots and not the game design or kill time of the weapon.  So basically if the weapon is a 4sk, you should be able to kill the player with 4 or 5 shots.  If they can escape beyond that, well you shouldn't have missed.  Without sprint or thrust i don't see a player escaping if you are able to kill them in 1.5 seconds or less if they aren't already close to cover in a game without sprint or thrust.  I think we tend to overestimate how quickly players can react to taking damage if they are caught unaware.  I bet even the best players will take at least 2 bullets with a .3 second fire rate if they are getting shot outside their LoS before they start to turn and react.

 

Maybe the better question to ask is, what percentage of 1 v 1 fights need to end in a death?  1v1 = 2 players start fighting each other at the same time, with full shields and no interference from teamshot.  I would say the percentage there needs to be pretty high 50% if at least one player is "Close to cover" up to 100% if neither player is close to cover.  But those numbers could also depend on range.  And thats just very generic.  If we really wanted to get granular with it you would need to figure out what it should be for engagements inside unscoped RRR, inside scoped RRR, outside scoped RRR.  

 

Do we have any numbers like this from past halo games?  I haven't been able to find any.

There's a certain point where theory only has so much value. The closest comparison is probably Reach GoldPro. There isn't much footage lying around, but from what I can tell, attempting to run away is still a pretty common option. @AkaDemiK you seem to have played those settings a fair amount. Care to weigh in on this discussion?


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#1033502 Halo Championship Series 2018 Teams, Seeds, and Discussion‏

Posted by Gobias on 23 July 2018 - 12:00 PM

Fortunately, 343 already has the perfect solution. The sniper on PC would be as you expect—hitscan or fast projectile, and pretty easy to land a body shot or headshot noscope with either using m+k. But here’s the catch: it’s the exact same experience on console. The bullet magnetism is even higher than Halo 5’s so it’s just as easy to hit noscopes with a controller.

Starting with Halo 4, this is what they’ve been preparing us for, ramping up the bullet magnetism so it wouldn’t feel jarring. They also intentionally made the mouse aiming feel bad in Halo 5 PC to make sure the sniper was balanced. They knew Halo 6 would be coming to PC. They care about us.
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#1033451 Halo Infinite Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 22 July 2018 - 04:54 PM

Good post. 2 main things i would like to respond to.

1) one of the reasons I argue for the 1 - 1.2 second kill time is because of my experience in Halo 5. The issue in H5 with escapability really comes from thrust and sprint, not the kill time. If you get first shot and don't miss and the other guy doesn't thrust and sprint away, he's not going to get away at base movement speed. If they are hugging corners and sticking to cover like glue then obviously they can, but that's true with any kill time longer than 0.

This next part is very subjective so take that for what you will but one of the reasons that i love halo is because even in a fair, 1v1 perfect fight you are guaranteed a longer engagement than the numerous CoD-esque shooters of the world. I would like even perfect engagements to be as long as possible without causing an overemphasis on teamshot or escapability problems (like every hero shooter on the planet). I have also stuck with the 1 - 1.2 second kill time because when I compare the CE and H5 fire rates to say the H2 BR fire rate, i like the H2 BR fire rate better. But i also like to be able to string together engagements instead of spending a ton of time on just one, inviting too much teamshot, something that in the absence of button glitches was a problem with H2. This is also why I have usually been qualifying my responses with "1 - 1.2 seconds". I know i want a 4 shot primary, i know i want kill times longer than CE, i know i want a fire rate a little slower than CE but faster than H2/3/Reach, and i know that magnum battles in H5 absent of abilities and sprint feel really fucking good, if a bit spammy at times. All that together = 1 - 1.2 second 4-shot, but with a wider perfect/max TTK so you're not always ending your engagements close to death and can move to the next one immediately. If i loved the CE or H5 magnum fire rate, i would probably agree with you and extend my "wish list" kill time to fall somewhere between .9 and 1.2 seconds.

Also, correct me if i'm wrong here but i believe the math for fire rate would be (Perfect Kill Time in Seconds)/(Shots for Perfect Kill - 1), since its the first shot that starts the clock at 0 so you don't count that when dividing. Been a long time since i have done anything besides money math...

H1 magnum = 0.6/(3-1) = .3 s/shot
H2 BR = 1.4/(4-1) = .46
H3 BR = 1.5/(4-1) = .5
Reach DMR = 1.6/(5-1) = .4
H5 Magnum = 1.2/(5-1) = .3

What this chart tells me is that i need to go play some zero bloom reach to see how the DMR feels since its possible that the burst-nature of the BR makes it feel a little different and the Reach DMR fire rate (or a little quicker) is about what I would be shooting for but 4 shot kill instead of 5.

2) My comment about having a skill gap so high with the weapon that it would end up raising the skill floor is really only meant for extreme examples. Like 0 aim assist, slow projectile with small hitboxes using a controller. That experience on a console would be considered by some to be the "Most skillful" with the widest skill gap, but its really to such an extreme that playing with a controller would be terribly un-fun. I totally agree that balancing weapons based in large part on their difficulty is the way to go but if you go too extreme with it, it just becomes a chore and un-fun to use with controller. Also in my reply here i purposefully didn't list bullet magnetism because i dont see the need for it. Bullets shouldn't bend toward a target just because "you were close", unless the tracking of targets is a specific feature of that specific weapon in which case the projectile needs to be slow and the damage relatively low.

 

I think 1.2s still poses a slight issue with escapability. Based on your analysis, let’s assume that that’s the longest perfect TTK that prevents the average escape attempt in a game without thrust and sprint. Going with the generous estimate of 25% of kills being perfect four-shots, the disadvantaged player can safely abandon any isolated engagement and reset the battle because he has a 75% chance of staying alive (help from teammates notwithstanding). Those are great odds for someone who should theoretically lose that engagement. So unless you’re willing to rely on teamshot to negate that escapability and screw over every experience that isn’t 4v4, there needs to be a buffer zone that ensures a higher percentage of battles can’t be escaped because of a gamble. If the perfect kill time plus one shot equaled the “minimum escapable time” of 1.2s, then a larger portion of battles, we’ll say 50%, would be inescapable by default. At this point, disadvantaged players are better off putting out the guaranteed damage on their opponent even if they end up failing the reversal.

In my opinion, 0.3s doesn’t feel spammy for a shot interval in CE. I think what sets the pistol apart from Halo 5’s Magnum in this regard is the amount of shots required for a kill and how often you need to reload. For example, a 4sk DMR with a 16-bullet magazine would feel significantly less spammy than Halo 5’s 5sk Magnum with its 12-bullet magazine, even with the same firing rate. I suppose it also helps that in CE you have more time to spare in securing a kill, so pacing shots is actually quite common when you’re up. 0.33 seconds would also probably be a fine shot interval, but any longer than that starts to slow the perfect kill time down unreasonably.

Regarding having uncomfortably low amounts of aim assist, I’m with you, then. I would like to mention though that bullet magnetism is still an essential part of the game. Without it, long range encounters would drag on forever, or more likely would end in constant stalemates. The bullet magnetism brings parity to long range shooting so that your gun is actually a threat beyond mid range. Looking at Halo 1 as a guideline, the bullet magnetism dies down dramatically as you get closer to your opponent—there’s no chance for them to ignore you and escape at close range, so the game pulls back and just uses friction to smooth out the larger aiming corrections. But I would still be interested to see how a console Halo game would play with zero bullet magnetism. “Open” map design might be exploited to segment maps through distance like in Halo 3, just in a non-random and not terrible way.

 

Edit: looks like I originally quoted you twice in the same post. Quite the double kill.


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#1033411 Halo Infinite Discussion

Posted by Gobias on 21 July 2018 - 07:15 PM

I’m resurrecting a recently deceased conversation since the forum ate my previous attempt a few days ago.


Yeah i have read and watched all of that in the past.  4v4 isn't going away as the primary competitive team size for halo going forward, so arguing that 2v2 > 4v4 is really not relevant. I don't even agree or disagree with the 2s vs 4s argument. Since we know that 4s is the design of halo's future (and most of its past), its not even an argument worth having to me.  The game needs to be balanced first and foremost for 4v4 gameplay and 4v4 spawn system.  A lot of the arguments about H1 TTK > every other halo seem to ignore these 2 facts.

I think a four-shot perfect kill time of 0.9s would be perfect for the next Halo. It would work just fine for all modes and it has benefits over 1.2s even in 4v4. I hope this doesn’t count as moving the goal posts since your post was against a 0.6s TTK, but there are some fundamental things I disagree with. The first thing is that I don’t think 343 should be going into this thinking, “How can we make a great 4v4 game?” They should just focus on making great 1v1 battles. If it’s not fun there, it won’t be fun when you add more players and reduce individual empowerment. Unrelated: I think the weapon balance would be a little more palatable if approached from the perspective of just one player fighting another, instead of the idea of team "roles" acquired through functional upgrades.

 


Given the context that 4v4 is the "bread and butter" gamemode since 2004 and will be for the foreseeable future, a .6 ttk is too fast.  When team size goes up, teamshot goes up as a byproduct. There is no way around that.  On the other side, i don't want to go back to the 1.4-1.7 second ttk's that plagued Halo until Halo 5 really. Those are gross over-compensations for the switch to 4v4 and change in spawn system imo.  Getting the perfect ttk back down a bit is one of the better things H5 did with the magnum.  Unfortunately it also made all the weapons too easy so even when you win a battle handily, you are still almost dead.  Lowering the TTK without having a decent delta really doesn't do the game any favors.

 

Going forward, Halo needs to go a little further.  I am not opposed to getting the TTK down a bit more to 1 second or so, though i still think the 1.2 second time is good if they stuck with that but anywhere in the 1 - 1.2 second range I think would be fine.  The much bigger issue as i see it is that there is almost no delta between a perfect TTK and max TTK. If the perfect ttk is 1.2, the max can't be 1.7 like it is now.  It needs to be more like 2 to 2.2 (i think max being about double perfect is a good starting point).  That's why i would love to be able to try Halo 5 with a magnum that still kills in 1.2 seconds, but is a 4 shot instead of a 5 shot, and still 7 shots to kill without a headshot. That gets you a 1.2 second perfect TTK and 2.1 second max. Firing cadence is a little slower, so making players miss helps more and missing hurts more. It would also give the magnum 3 perfect kills per mag.

Yes, a large disparity between perfect and average kill time is a huge factor in promoting interesting gameplay, but it’s not the only one. Being able to outshoot my opponent is an incentive to stay in the battle only if that battle is likely to continue. Let’s take a look at a common 1v1 exchange where player 1 lands a shot on player 2, who is previously unaware. Player 2 now has the choice to return fire or try to escape. If the perfect-average disparity is great enough, player 2 is more likely to stand ground in the hopes of winning the fight. But if the perfect kill time is slow enough, escape is still a viable option, and also an attractive one since player 2 is disadvantaged. To compound this, player 1 also has the option to back down at any point even if player 2 puts in better shots; he has the advantage of being aware of player 1 longer. This negatively influences player 2’s decision to hold ground since victory is less likely; player 1 could quite easily back down early, leaving player 2 with low shields and a high risk of being cleaned up.

So the solution is both a high perfect-average disparity and a sufficiently low kill time, around 0.9s. 1.2s is clearly enough time for players to react and attempt escape, which reinforces defensive decision making in the two ways described above. And if the average kill time is extended by increasing the difficulty, the perceived (and actual) risk of dying while trying to escape a battle is naturally decreased—players will tend to run away more often and try to “call your bluff” that your shots are good enough to punish them.

 


This need to extend the TTK a bit compared to H1 also comes from the relative differences in spawn systems.  Yeah, gametypes are an issue in CE 4v4 but i would argue that the spawn system is far worse for the 4v4 experience especially for people that aren't intimately familiar with how CE spawns work.  Since spawns are predicated on where your living teammate is, in 2v2 its kind of perfect competitively since you can control where your dead teammate will spawn up or if they will get a random. You know exactly who is in control.  The more players you add, the more the possibilities for this really snowball out of control though. By the time you get to 4v4 spawning becomes a hot mess.  Since the rest of the Halo titles spawns work in the opposite way, you can't force unpredictable spawns when you are on the defensive and regain control.  Its up to the enemy to decide where you will spawn, you need to have a little more time to either 1) turn a gunfight around or 2) scoot out of your spawn area and reposition.  A slightly slower TTK accomplishes that.

 

The thing that makes these calculations really imperfect is the "Average" TTK argument.  Because an average includes misses.  How do you decide how many misses is a good thing? and how do you calculate the average miss rate of active gunfights at each skill tier?  Really you need an API that can let you pull from player data only instances when 2 players start damaging each other via gunfire at the same time, take no other outside damage, and the fight ends with one player dying.  Average accuracy isn't really a good indicator since pre and post-firing can really skew the results.  I dont think there are any games that have let us pull that kind of data.  If you increase average TTK by making a weapon really hard to use, you risk raising the skill floor so much that noobs hate it and think its "totally OP" when they play people better than them, even if in reality its not.  You make up the difference with damage output.  Make the TTK a little slower and new players can feel like they had a fighting chance even if they got rocked just as hard.

Responding to the bolded, I don’t think that’s a solid argument for making the kill time close to 1.2s than 0.9s or even 0.6s. All that accomplishes is making the game less fun for competent players in both close and easy matches. Furthermore, the kind of player that thinks the utility weapon (also known as the weapon that balances the sandbox) is overpowered is also the kind of player who thinks automatic weapons should kill faster than it. The beauty of balancing with difficulty is that a sufficiently difficult precision weapon will have a disproportionately higher average kill time at a lower level of play compared to automatics. But you also have to consider that players with worse aim also have worse strafes, so if they are playing competitively (i.e. against players of similar skill) they have no reason not to use the utility weapon. To enhance this effect, reticle friction (aim assist) could be increased while bullet magnetism (auto aim) is lowered, meaning that noobs have an easier time while pros are all but unaffected.

 


TL;DR - 4v4 balanced Halo needs slightly longer TTKs than CE because of the increased number of players, different spawn system and to keep the skill floor low enough for new players BUT by and large the games after CE really overcompensated making the TTK too long and destroying the delta between perfect and max ttk.

TLDR: 4v4 Halo might need a slower perfect kill time than Halo CE’s, but it also needs to be faster than Halo 5’s so players have more incentive to play aggressively. 0.9s in four shots is the perfect recipe. Balancing this out with significantly more difficulty would produce good results at all levels of play, even allowing lower-skilled players to appreciate more of the automatic weapon usage they seem to prefer.


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