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Reddit Halo discussions on game design make me feel disgusted. Especially sprint. 

It's like watching an unwashed chimpanzee talk about Tensor Calculus. 

Fuck those ShyWay videos lol. You've got a huge mob of brainlets who don't even understand how to play basic Halo, talking about how "ackchually sprint and thrust and slide and clamber and hover are good because watch this guy who rants incoherently for 45 minutes over footage without making a point". 

It's hilarious. If you asked these people a single callout in Halo, a single map setup, or even something as basic as how to play CTF, they wouldn't be able to answer you. 

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^ the same used to be true of half of this forum

 

maybe not as much now

 

everyones just busy waiting for a halo game to be "the one" and we're all getting older, and theres almost no hype. i give it a week before the hype of these pics wears off and everyone starts wondering why they made a reward for halo 5's most dedicated players literally the colors black and white

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14 minutes ago, Killmachine said:

theres almost no hype.

Hilarious to think back to those over-the-top campaign gameplay reaction videos.

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Good job burning any potential goodwill you may have had with those organizations 343 and making them way less likely to invest in Halo after this shit show.

This company never ceases to amaze me with how incompetent they are.

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1 hour ago, Boyo said:

That’s a projectile effect not an alt-fire.  
 

For example, the Gravity Bow can 2sk a player in 0.6 seconds (quick-charge then auto fire) with knock back projectiles and it can also launch an arcing projectile that creates a gravity vortex on impact, tossing a nearby player out from behind cover.  

Like the new Statis nade from Destiny 2

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On 12/9/2020 at 11:55 PM, Boyo said:

snip

I was trying to rock the boat on the assertion that less aim assist makes for a better game, at any level of play.

(aim assist excluding bullet magnetism and automatic tracking here, or my point won't make sense)

On 12/10/2020 at 7:01 PM, BigShow36 said:

Yes, I absolutely believe the Halo games would have been more popular and successful, especially over longer time periods, with lower TTK and less aim assists. The advent of matchmaking would have solved many of the (imaginary) issues people lay at the feet of challenging gameplay, namely that people don't like to get destroyed. Matchmaking works much better with a deep skill gap, because it's much easier to separate players based on ability in that type of game, rather than modern Halo games where success is completely dependent on your teammates. 

I completely agree - aside from the "less aim assist" part. Halo would work better with even more Slowdown assist. 

Imagine Halo CE, but your point of aim is where you look (toggled with a button so you can also look at ammo etc.). Would the game break? No. You effectively have an aimbot, but not one with zero reaction time, and there is still travel time, and a punishing delay between shots. It would be intense. You'd have to use everything in the game to gain an upper hand, not relying on the opponent missing more shots than you. Many other games would break under this test, but that's the strength of Halo. Thanks to responsive movement, grenades, melee and vertical maps, it is more than an aim contest.

To back this up, I looked at some Halo 3 competitive 2v2 yesterday. In the BR-arena of Heretic, I noted what caused victory/defeat in several engagements. The overwhelming majority where due to superior positioning, a sneaky angle, preaiming, first shot advantage, well timed melee, misjudged movement (aimed different direction than player ended up going/didnt lift aim in anticipation of jump), grenades, etc. Rarely did someone lose because of a straight up miss. Strengthening aim assist in this match would have had little effect. On the other hand, removing or reducing aim assist would have devalued all these mentioned skill-based plays in favor of precision aim. The smartest play wouldn't always win. With a deeper sandbox, as found on other maps, aiming skill would be even less important, as there are even more ways to gain an advantage.

 

Saying that Halo would be more popular with less aim assist is indefensible when CoD is the most popoular FPS. CoD has nothing on Halo except its accessibility; everyone can get a kill without high mechanical skill. And this is despite a large part of the FPS community asking for stuff like "challenging recoil". Then MW comes along with super easy guns, and wow, it's super popular. And even within this easy enviroment, the meta gun is the M4, an easy gun with high lethality. That is not critique of MW btw, its accessibility is admirable even if the rest of the game is poor.

I don't think people mind getting destroyed, I think they mind not being able to play the game (get kills) because they lack muscle memory. People dont want challenging mechanical input. And challenging mechanical input doesnt make the game deeper. What it does to the skill gap is questionable; fight someone with half your accuracy, and you don't even have to try. You aren't playing the same game. Low aim assist doesn't increase the skill gap by empowering good players, it just lowers how bad players can do further, preventing participation in the "real game".

 

With good aim assist, people can easily enjoy the game, and more players can access the depth of the game because they arent held back by poor precision aim. This would result in more players onboard, and lasting popularity (assuming the game is well designed in the first place).

 

I think I'm in the minority having this view, but I think that is because of FPS tradition -the entrenched mindset of "muh skill" at any cost, as if game design isn't about more than making a hard activity- and not because of an actual love of mechanical skill. I have to agree flashy sniper plays are cool, but personally I have more fun winning BR than sniper duels. Thanks for reading.

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1 hour ago, potetr said:

To back this up, I looked at some Halo 3 competitive 2v2 yesterday. In the BR-arena of Heretic, I noted what caused victory/defeat in several engagements. The overwhelming majority where due to superior positioning, a sneaky angle, preaiming, first shot advantage, well timed melee, misjudged movement (aimed different direction than player ended up going/didnt lift aim in anticipation of jump), grenades, etc. Rarely did someone lose because of a straight up miss. Strengthening aim assist in this match would have had little effect. On the other hand, removing or reducing aim assist would have devalued all these mentioned skill-based plays in favor of precision aim. The smartest play wouldn't always win. With a deeper sandbox, as found on other maps, aiming skill would be even less important, as there are even more ways to gain an advantage.

Aiming skill is much too diminished in recent Halo games, Halo 3 included. The ease of aiming has cascaded into a slew of other problems, such as hard-coding randomness to mitigate the ease of aiming, and slowing the pace of the overall game (recall never-ending standoffs). Geometric and numeric advantages will always provide a benefit, but they should not be the sole determining factor in the outcome in a first-person SHOOTER. Superior aim should provide a reasonable chance to overcome those other advantages if the aim discrepancy is great enough between players. A low shooting skill-gap makes the likelihood of a real discrepancy in aiming skill extremely unlikely. The game becomes a game that is solely based on who-sees-who first or has the most guns pointed in one direction. Everything stagnates from there. 

 

Quote

Saying that Halo would be more popular with less aim assist is indefensible when CoD is the most popoular FPS. CoD has nothing on Halo except its accessibility; everyone can get a kill without high mechanical skill. And this is despite a large part of the FPS community asking for stuff like "challenging recoil". Then MW comes along with super easy guns, and wow, it's super popular. And even within this easy enviroment, the meta gun is the M4, an easy gun with high lethality. That is not critique of MW btw, its accessibility is admirable even if the rest of the game is poor.

CoD became and remains popular because it was well-crafted and makes people feel powerful on an individual level. All of the guns slay quickly. Halo could have maintained it's prominence in the gaming community by maintaining that feeling of power, but instead they relentlessly removed power from the individual. Halo CE was a cultural phenomenon and exploded in popularity, and it has one of the highest skill-gaps in console shooters. Saying it couldn't maintain that popularity without sacrificing what made it great in the first place is complete speculation. 

Quote

I don't think people mind getting destroyed, I think they mind not being able to play the game (get kills) because they lack muscle memory. People dont want challenging mechanical input. And challenging mechanical input doesnt make the game deeper. What it does to the skill gap is questionable; fight someone with half your accuracy, and you don't even have to try. You aren't playing the same game. Low aim assist doesn't increase the skill gap by empowering good players, it just lowers how bad players can do further, preventing participation in the "real game".

With good aim assist, people can easily enjoy the game, and more players can access the depth of the game because they arent held back by poor precision aim. This would result in more players onboard, and lasting popularity (assuming the game is well designed in the first place).

Challenging mechanical input absolutely makes the game deeper. It's a completely different skill-type that a player is required to master, and when you have deeper shooting-skill, it enhances the opportunity set of almost every other strategic decision tree. If someone's map knowledge is far superior to my own, they also don't have to try as much to win the game; that doesn't mean we should remove map knowledge as a skill and only play in a square, flat room.

Bad players can still have fun against other bad players, especially when they recognize that there is a great deal of depth to the game and see a clear path forward to improvement. I can't play in the NFL, but that doesn't mean I want to limit everyone to only running 10 MPH and jumping only so high so I can compete. A bad player has no business competing against a good player, that's just a fact of life. 

Why are we even playing a first-person shooter if we don't actually want to participate in the shooting aspect of the game? 

 

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3 hours ago, RatherSilentMr said:

Like the new Statis nade from Destiny 2

Yeah, this statis can go suck a dick. You're froze for what feels like 10 years. 

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The crunch on Infinite is probably extreme. Probably only started full dev cycle in 2019.

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On 12/10/2020 at 7:28 PM, Shekkles said:

The crunch on Infinite is probably extreme. Probably only started full dev cycle in 2019.

I am so curious about this, what were the Execs at 343 telling Microsoft for literally years about the game that allowed this to happen?

"We are spending time doing some R&D  and getting familiar with Unreal Engine"

"Actually we are going to switch back to our previous engine and just modify it to meet out needs, this will take some time though" 

Early 2020: "Oh uh... here is a vertical slice of the game, we should be able to hit a Holiday 2020 release date for sure." 

Then the Xbox showcase happens and big daddy Phil Spencer is like "Yea, I'm gonna have to see the rest of what you guys have been working on."

And we end up where we are now, with a game that was in some type of development for 5 years being delayed another year, and Microsoft taking control and sending some of their industry veterans in (Staten) to go all Darth Vader on them to get the job done in a timely manner. This is how I imagine it happened at least, something similar to this.

It almost feels like an entire company run by adults acting like a college kid who keeps pretending like they are working on their 100+ page Thesis the entire semester only to keep putting it off with the plan to throw some shit together the week it is due. 

Edit: I know fans and the community were happy about Microsoft putting Staten on the job, and it was a good move, but from what I understand about how corporate America works, the atmosphere when it happened was much closer to this: 

 

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why do people think phil spencer is "setting things straight" or whatever

there's no way he hasnt checked up with 343 over this dev stuff, halo is still their number 1 exclusive franchise and this game is xbox's best weapon this generation, there is no way he didnt see the state of the game beforehand

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1 hour ago, NAK said:

It almost feels like an entire company run by adults acting like a college kid who keeps pretending like they are working on their 100+ page Thesis the entire semester only keep putting it off with the plan to throw some shit together the week it is due. 

I feel personally attacked.

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3 hours ago, Shekkles said:

The crunch on Infinite is probably extreme. Probably only started full dev cycle in 2019.

Part of me wants to believe the crunch is all the content they added. That maybe just maybe they know they need to have as more launch content than h5 content last content patch. 

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On 12/11/2020 at 12:55 AM, BigShow36 said:

Aiming skill is much too diminished in recent Halo games, Halo 3 included. The ease of aiming has cascaded into a slew of other problems, such as hard-coding randomness to mitigate the ease of aiming, and slowing the pace of the overall game (recall never-ending standoffs).

Geometric and numeric advantages will always provide a benefit, but they should not be the sole determining factor in the outcome in a first-person SHOOTER. Superior aim should provide a reasonable chance to overcome those other advantages if the aim discrepancy is great enough between players. A low shooting skill-gap makes the likelihood of a real discrepancy in aiming skill extremely unlikely.

The game becomes a game that is solely based on who-sees-who first or has the most guns pointed in one direction. Everything stagnates from there. 

Those are issues that can be fixed unrelated to aim assist.

I disagree. Why shoud you be able to all-aim-no-brain your way out of poor plays? Why value mechanical over cognitive skill? That's where we differ I guess.

Halo 3 isn't stale because of aim assist, it's because of too long TTK, slow movement/acceleration, infrequent power items and some stale maps.

On 12/11/2020 at 12:55 AM, BigShow36 said:

CoD became and remains popular because it was well-crafted and makes people feel powerful on an individual level. All of the guns slay quickly. Halo could have maintained it's prominence in the gaming community by maintaining that feeling of power, but instead they relentlessly removed power from the individual. Halo CE was a cultural phenomenon and exploded in popularity, and it has one of the highest skill-gaps in console shooters. Saying it couldn't maintain that popularity without sacrificing what made it great in the first place is complete speculation. 

CoD makes you powerful AND lets you easily access that power thanks to aim assist and low TTK. I agree Halo would be more popular with a lower TTK, it's its biggest issue. 

CE was popular because it had aim assist (and was good), not despite it. A low TTK Halo would be popular today, if it also had strong aim assist, or people will just keep playing CoD.

On 12/11/2020 at 12:55 AM, BigShow36 said:

Challenging mechanical input absolutely makes the game deeper. It's a completely different skill-type that a player is required to master, and when you have deeper shooting-skill, it enhances the opportunity set of almost every other strategic decision tree.

You'll have to explain that. What part of limiting people in executing their options, increases possible options? (if that's what you meant?)

On 12/11/2020 at 12:55 AM, BigShow36 said:

If someone's map knowledge is far superior to my own, they also don't have to try as much to win the game; that doesn't mean we should remove map knowledge as a skill and only play in a square, flat room.

We have a misunderstanding if you think this is what I want! Map knowledge isn't input. I dont want to remove cognitive skills, I want to remove difficult inputs limiting players, i.e. strictly mechanical skills.

To be clear, aim assist should only enhance your input. If you don't actively track a player, you shouldn't get any help. If someone changes direction at the perfect moment, you should miss if you don't anticipate it. I want to preserve the cognitive skills in aiming.

On 12/11/2020 at 12:55 AM, BigShow36 said:

Bad players can still have fun against other bad players, especially when they recognize that there is a great deal of depth to the game and see a clear path forward to improvement. I can't play in the NFL, but that doesn't mean I want to limit everyone to only running 10 MPH and jumping only so high so I can compete. A bad player has no business competing against a good player, that's just a fact of life. 

This is about lifting people up, not limiting them.

I have some IRL friends who play Dota 2 and Smash at a high level, we played Halo this summer. They could probably get concepts like map- and power item control, shield mechanics etc. in an hour, but they are probably 50 hours of practice away from being able to kill me while I'm moving. I don't think they had much fun. The only thing defining them as bad players is a lack of practice with a controller. It's frustrating. Giving them stronger aim assist wouldn't have affected my play, but we'd be able to compete. Of course they would have a long way to go in mastering the game, they would still be bad, but they'd be able to play!
 

 

Shooters have so many fun skills like awareness of enemies, lines of sight, maps, and much more. It's a first person SHOOTER not a first person AIMER, if you accept genre names as arguments.

 

@Basu get out of here with the thonking emoji and think about it my man:)

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@potetr  Do you think an unscoped Sniper Rifle should have aim assist?  What about the Rocket Launcher?  If you can agree that these weapons don’t need aim assist then we are only one weapon away from pleasing the competitive community:  a utility weapon that kills quick and takes some skill to operate effectively.  This is why there needs to be two utility weapons.  The Magnum has low aim assist to go along with snipe and rocks for competitive play while the BR has more aim assist to provide casual players with an enjoyable social experience.  

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@Boyo

I don't like the design of the sniper that much. More AA would highlight it's problems.

A railgun of sorts that charges up faster when scoped would be a more strict long range option with more counterplay. Or a beam type weapon that deals more damage when scoped.

AA would be annoying on rockets because you are mostly trying to hit things near enemies. And that is easy already.

 

Two starting weapons is a good compromise, but still a compromise.

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44 minutes ago, potetr said:

Two starting weapons is a good compromise, but still a compromise.


The Plasma Launcher is the social rocket launcher, filling a similar niche but providing more assistance via homing projectiles.  These asymmetries in weapon design also lend themselves to asymmetric game modes like Invasion.  That’s what I believe creating a Halo sandbox involves, balancing and multi purposing weapons between competitive, social, campaign, and invasion.  

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9 hours ago, potetr said:

You'll have to explain that. What part of limiting people in executing their options, increases possible options? (if that's what you meant?)

I'm going to focus on this, because it's an important concept. 

If you can't outshoot your opponents due to ease-of-aiming, you must rely purely on positioning and numerical advantage. That limits viable strategies. You cannot flank because without a numerical advantage it's irrelevant, or if they hold a power position it's irrelevant. Your strategy is forced into getting more guns on them than they get on you, and that's it. That's why Halo has devolved into holding a power position and "set-ups." 

Having a deep skill gap does not limit the depth of game, it adds color and variation (ie depth) to every other aspect of the game. A great shooter will have a different playstyle than someone who is not as good at shooting. Just like a great positional player will have a different playstyle than someone who isn't as great at map movement and positioning. A support player would have a different playstyle than a more aggressive, physically skilled player. Players would have unique strengths that differentiate their playstyles, but that would not decrease the importance of non-shooting skills. 

9 hours ago, potetr said:

Shooters have so many fun skills like awareness of enemies, lines of sight, maps, and much more. It's a first person SHOOTER not a first person AIMER, if you accept genre names as arguments.

Having a high aiming skill-gap would in no way detract from those things; it would actually serve to increase the variation and application of them. I'm also really not sure how you can accept that a first-person shooter does not require any particular skill in aiming. That's like saying a racing game shouldn't require players to steer the cars. 

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Regarding Infinite, honestly, I would be content if the gameplay was like an improved Legendary Slayer from Halo 4. There were no loadouts, cheesy equipment, or abilities (other than sprint, which I'll get to). Items came up at set times in set locations. Other than a few gripes, it felt like pretty competent Halo to me.

If Infinite could improve on the following from the Legendary settings in H4, It'd be among the best Halo experiences to date:

-A slower sprint, with more stopping power. Sprinting should do less, and be punished more.
-More challenging shooting, preferably with a single shot projectile utility and a faster TTK.
-Faster item spawns, preferably static.
-Every map should have 1 or 2 powerups.
-Shorter radar range (no radar in ranked).
-Descope.
-Equipment on map that isn't total cheeseball bullshit like the bubble shield, regen and power drain. I'm optimistic about the grapple hook, honestly. Thrust would be a decent pickup as well, as long as it had a visual tell on the player model at all times.

I could live with sprint and clamber if the whole game played like this.

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4 hours ago, Hard Way said:

Regarding Infinite, honestly, I would be content if the gameplay was like an improved Legendary Slayer from Halo 4. There were no loadouts, cheesy equipment, or abilities (other than sprint, which I'll get to). Items came up at set times in set locations. Other than a few gripes, it felt like pretty competent Halo to me.

If Infinite could improve on the following from the Legendary settings in H4, It'd be among the best Halo experiences to date:

-A slower sprint, with more stopping power. Sprinting should do less, and be punished more.
-More challenging shooting, preferably with a single shot projectile utility and a faster TTK.
-Faster item spawns, preferably static.
-Every map should have 1 or 2 powerups.
-Shorter radar range (no radar in ranked).
-Descope.
-Equipment on map that isn't total cheeseball bullshit like the bubble shield, regen and power drain. I'm optimistic about the grapple hook, honestly. Thrust would be a decent pickup as well, as long as it had a visual tell on the player model at all times.

I could live with sprint and clamber if the whole game played like this.

I’d like that. So a radar similar to h5 radar of 18M?

As for difficulty shooting I’d like something like wingman from apex legends difficult. 
Or something like the pistol from split gate. I hate that game for the portal abuse but it’s gun balance is spot on(but it’s starting AR could use a nerf) 

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18 hours ago, BigShow36 said:

If you can't outshoot your opponents due to ease-of-aiming, you must rely purely on positioning and numerical advantage. That limits viable strategies. You cannot flank because without a numerical advantage it's irrelevant, or if they hold a power position it's irrelevant. Your strategy is forced into getting more guns on them than they get on you, and that's it. That's why Halo has devolved into holding a power position and "set-ups." 

What? A flank is always relevant due to reaction time. You only needer numerical parity to win if you shoot first. 

I get your point though: Yeah, the chance that your enemies fuck up and you don't can let you win engagements that would be otherwise suicidal (such as 2v1). Is that really a strategy? I guess it is the only option against the set ups you describe and some power positions, but forcing such a play is an issue with the game at that point, as there is no emergent counterplay. And I think there is counterplay with powerups (namely camo) and rockets (and other mechanics). Like Hardway just said, every maps should have a powerup. Imagine how much more dynamic Blackout would be with a camo at the bottom. The individual should also be more powerful to make flanks more impactful (like with lower TTK, and perhaps you should get your shield to start recharging by picking up something the enemy drops).

18 hours ago, BigShow36 said:

Having a high aiming skill-gap would in no way detract from those things; it would actually serve to increase the variation and application of them. I'm also really not sure how you can accept that a first-person shooter does not require any particular skill in aiming. That's like saying a racing game shouldn't require players to steer the cars. 

You keep misrepresenting my point with inaccurate examples and analogies. A racing game analogy true to my point would be if racing games had shitty, jerky steering, perhaps emulating non-servo steering. I'd probably want to improve the input method to actually represent what a driver wants to do.  

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David Sirlin talks about something related here: http://sirlingames.squarespace.com/blog/2012/7/16/execution-in-fighting-games.html

and went on to make this game: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fantasy_Strike

If you (anyone reading this) haven't heard of Sirlin you will be doing yourself a favor reading a bit here http://www.sirlin.net/article-archive, if you are a competitive player or interested in game design.

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On 12/10/2020 at 2:04 PM, TiberiusAudley said:

I'm still curious why orgs were so gung-ho about signing so quickly in the first place.  There has to be someone with a silver tongue at 343 to have gotten the orgs to buy in so early.

Or microsoft was paying

On 12/10/2020 at 7:05 PM, Gold said:

Yeah, this statis can go suck a dick. You're froze for what feels like 10 years. 

I have said it before and i'll say it again, crowd control mechanics in PvP, universally, suck. Locking down a player for a set time so they literally cannot move or defend themselves is just lazy, cheeseball nonsense.  "Put your controller down and wait to die while we take you out of the game for a minute here".

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3 hours ago, Apoll0 said:

Or microsoft was paying

I have said it before and i'll say it again, crowd control mechanics in PvP, universally, suck. Locking down a player for a set time so they literally cannot move or defend themselves is just lazy, cheeseball nonsense.  "Put your controller down and wait to die while we take you out of the game for a minute here".

https://riseofwinterchill.com/articles/lanes-without-stuns

 

CC in PVP is pretty annoying yeah i think this article also makes a good point.

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would you consider an exaggerated version of Reach's concussion rifle, with greater area of effect and knockback a useful tool or an extremely frustrating one to play against?

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