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There needs to be a clear distinction between a utility weapon and precision weapons in general as a preface to any discussion on the broad differences between autos and precision weapons.

The utility gun functions as it's namesake, a strictly precision rifle that can kill consistently and quickly at all ranges. It's purpose - above all else - is to allow freshly-spawned players to be useful and to facilitate change in favor of skillful and initiative players. That is, to prevent games from becoming stagnant. As we want it to serve this role, it's given traits that embody this: a low perfect TTK and a higher average TTK, a mag size large enough to kill whole teams, competency at all ranges, and consistency in firing. Examples are the CE Magnum, the H3BR, and the H5 Pistol. 

A precision weapon is simply a weapon that's capable of instantly killing unshielded opponents via headshot. It's the superset of the utility weapon. 

 

There's no concrete rule that distinguishes the balancing principles behind automatics and precision weapons, and you're kind of free to design as you please so long as you follow the principles of fairness and proportionality. That being said, I do have several rules that I follow before I propose an automatic weapon and I'll provide my own ideal envisioning of an assault rifle to illustrate.

1) An automatic weapon has a (relatively) lower projectile speed than its counterparts. This extends to ballistics like the assault rifle. (CE's pistol has a projectile speed of 210 game units/sec. My ideal utility has a projectile speed of 240 game units/sec, and my ideal assault rifle has a projectile velocity of 144 game units/sec.)

2) An automatic weapon may have accuracy and/or recoil penalties imposed upon it to limit its competency at ranges. It's worth noting that the former is generally  unpreferable. (For reference, CE's vanilla AR has 6 degrees of maximum spread and ~1 degree of minimum spread. My ideal assault rifle has 3 degrees of maximum spread and 0 degrees of minimum spread, along with 3 degrees of recoil per second of sustained fire.)

3) An automatic weapon serves a specialized role, and is sufficiently different in it's performance at said role than almost every other weapon. This purpose can pertain to higher damage against certain materials, niche advantages against powerups, physics-based advantages, and ease of kill-TTK-range tradeoffs. (The vanilla CE AR kills a Spartan from full shields and health in 15 rounds, which clocks at exactly a 1 second TTK. My ideal assault rifle is exclusively designed as an bullethose meant to shred through health at lightning speed and finish off kills. It accomplishes this with a higher RoF, and sharply increased health damage whilst also having sharply lowered shield damage. It also allows for a broader grenade toss arc.) 

4) An automatic weapon cannot replace a utility weapon in purpose, nor can it serve the same sandbox role. While it can serve very well in it's designated roles and may even win more fights for its user against a utility weapon in CQC - it can never kill faster and must take proportionally longer for a perfect kill than the utility weapon due to differences in difficulty of use. (My ideal utility is a 0.6 second 3SK, my ideal assault rifle is a minimum 1.05 second TTK. While this is still lightning fast by Halo standards with the Halo 5 assault rifle killing in around 1.35 seconds, the generous gap in perfect TTK ensures that a skilled player can override a weapon disadvantage and fights between users of the two weapons aren't 100% predictable rock-paper-scissors outcomes. This is compounded by the skill curve inherent to the assault rifle, a product of recoil control and projectile aim.)

 

This is the general layout of the thought process I follow. What went wrong with H5 midrange competitions between the magnum and the AR wasn't the fact that they happened, it was that it was so evenly skewed between the two weapons when they took vastly different amounts of effort to use well. 

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5 hours ago, xSociety said:

I'd go one step further and have the vehicle itself give everyone around it radar pings. Also, have the transport vehicles act as a spawn point for the whole team, like transport vehicles in BF. 

This is an interesting idea. Going further if you had a radar asset that your team received feeds from then your team’s advantage from the radar could be at risk by the other team. 

another variant is each Team member can receive radar points from each other

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1 hour ago, _Synapse said:

There needs to be a clear distinction between a utility weapon and precision weapons in general as a preface to any discussion on the broad differences between autos and precision weapons.

The utility gun functions as it's namesake, a strictly precision rifle that can kill consistently and quickly at all ranges. It's purpose - above all else - is to allow freshly-spawned players to be useful and to facilitate change in favor of skillful and initiative players. That is, to prevent games from becoming stagnant. As we want it to serve this role, it's given traits that embody this: a low perfect TTK and a higher average TTK, a mag size large enough to kill whole teams, competency at all ranges, and consistency in firing. Examples are the CE Magnum, the H3BR, and the H5 Pistol. 

A precision weapon is simply a weapon that's capable of instantly killing unshielded opponents via headshot. It's the superset of the utility weapon. 

 

There's no concrete rule that distinguishes the balancing principles behind automatics and precision weapons, and you're kind of free to design as you please so long as you follow the principles of fairness and proportionality. That being said, I do have several rules that I follow before I propose an automatic weapon and I'll provide my own ideal envisioning of an assault rifle to illustrate.

1) An automatic weapon has a (relatively) lower projectile speed than its counterparts. This extends to ballistics like the assault rifle. (CE's pistol has a projectile speed of 210 game units/sec. My ideal utility has a projectile speed of 240 game units/sec, and my ideal assault rifle has a projectile velocity of 144 game units/sec.)

2) An automatic weapon may have accuracy and/or recoil penalties imposed upon it to limit its competency at ranges. It's worth noting that the former is generally  unpreferable. (For reference, CE's vanilla AR has 6 degrees of maximum spread and ~1 degree of minimum spread. My ideal assault rifle has 3 degrees of maximum spread and 0 degrees of minimum spread, along with 3 degrees of recoil per second of sustained fire.)

3) An automatic weapon serves a specialized role, and is sufficiently different in it's performance at said role than almost every other weapon. This purpose can pertain to higher damage against certain materials, niche advantages against powerups, physics-based advantages, and ease of kill-TTK-range tradeoffs. (The vanilla CE AR kills a Spartan from full shields and health in 15 rounds, which clocks at exactly a 1 second TTK. My ideal assault rifle is exclusively designed as an bullethose meant to shred through health at lightning speed and finish off kills. It accomplishes this with a higher RoF, and sharply increased health damage whilst also having sharply lowered shield damage. It also allows for a broader grenade toss arc.) 

4) An automatic weapon cannot replace a utility weapon in purpose, nor can it serve the same sandbox role. While it can serve very well in it's designated roles and may even win more fights for its user against a utility weapon in CQC - it can never kill faster and must take proportionally longer for a perfect kill than the utility weapon due to differences in difficulty of use. (My ideal utility is a 0.6 second 3SK, my ideal assault rifle is a minimum 1.05 second TTK. While this is still lightning fast by Halo standards with the Halo 5 assault rifle killing in around 1.35 seconds, the generous gap in perfect TTK ensures that a skilled player can override a weapon disadvantage and fights between users of the two weapons aren't 100% predictable rock-paper-scissors outcomes. This is compounded by the skill curve inherent to the assault rifle, a product of recoil control and projectile aim.)

 

This is the general layout of the thought process I follow. What went wrong with H5 midrange competitions between the magnum and the AR wasn't the fact that they happened, it was that it was so evenly skewed between the two weapons when they took vastly different amounts of effort to use well. 

The problem that I have with all of this is that you're just trying to design a typical Halo AR that isn't quite as random. Your entire initial paragraph describing a utility weapon could be applied to an automatic weapon. In fact we actually have seen that gun already. The Halo CE pistol. It just wasn't functionally automatic because they decided that the bullets should come out randomly if you held down the trigger. I would argue that there is essentially zero skill involved in pulling the trigger in CE as fast as is permissible like everyone does because the scenario where you want to slow down and pick your shot would still apply to the gun if you held down the trigger instead of using multiple presses on the trigger. In both scenarios you would simply stop using the right trigger while you were attempting to aim then press it again. 

Just because something is automatic that really doesn't imply anything about the rate of fire or accuracy or damage per bullet. You can change all of that to recreate the Halo CE pistol pacing wise and make it look like the commando with the only functional difference being the loss of having to individually pull the trigger for each bullet which just honestly isn't a big deal in Halo. I'd say the only reason it even feels scary or skill based in Halo CE is because holding down the trigger too long will result in your gun not functioning correctly and not because pulling the trigger itself is skill based or adding any additional difficulty its just a small step to trip you up if you fail and is otherwise irrelevant. If a weapon is skill based, appropriately difficult, has enough range to compete at reasonable ranges and headshot capable it could be the utility weapon in any Halo even if it shot teddy bears at people. We're just weirdly stuck in a game where automatic weapons are inexplicably created to be no skill weapons

I guess the really simple point I'm trying to make is that the difference between an automatic weapon and everything else is simply how often and how long you hold down the fire button/trigger. Everything else can be designed however you want it so there is no reason that we just get bullet spraying shit as our only type of automatic weapon. Its just a total lack of creativity that's had us stuck with these rng spray and pray weapons for so long. Something like the sentinel beam could have been cool as fuck with someone a little more willing to make it that way

We just gotta stop feeding the casual community the classic Halo AR. Its like junk food and bad for development lol something like the commando could be the perfect gun to bridge the gap by just tricking them into seeing their cool new powerful automatic while lowkey just giving everyone a skilled utility weapon at the same time

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15 hours ago, Reamis25 said:

My experience in coding isn’t high but to put it simply when coding hit markers they can just have it applied to everything(easiest way to go about it) . If they were to want to not have hit markers on grenades. They’d have to individually code each weapon, each vehicle, or basically anything that causes damage to have hit markers and decide what they don’t want to have them. The best solution from a coding perspective is no hit markers at all because that would just be annoying to code

Really? It's just odd to me that they can create gigabytes worth of content but when it comes to programming 4 lines on a screen on 40 different things that's a big no no. 

 

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13 hours ago, Cursed Lemon said:

It's not a bad idea but it also kind of conflicts in usefulness with the custom browser, unless match composer could be used in conjunction with the custom browser to quickly locate games.

Counter Strike does this. You can join games through match making or the server browser. No reason it can't be a combination of the two. Just allow any public custom game using default rule sets to be joinable by match making players. This is what "quick match" used to be in the early days of XBL, before proper playlists, etc.

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11 hours ago, MultiLockOn said:

. Most important thing is to uphold integrity

What do you mean by integrity?

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Damn... this is some of the most active I feel like I've seen these forums in a long time. It would be cool to "quantify" some Halo hype by seeing how much activity has increased since E3. Either very happy to see some positivity about Halo!

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2 minutes ago, heytred said:

Damn... this is some of the most active I feel like I've seen these forums in a long time. It would be cool to "quantify" some Halo hype by seeing how much activity has increased since E3. Either very happy to see some positivity about Halo!

I’m really glad these forums are back to give me some much needed mental distraction from the stress of operating heavy machinery.

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1 minute ago, NavG123 said:

I’m really glad these forums are back to give me some much needed mental distraction from the stress of operating heavy machinery.

Yeah same - I haven't regularly visited a forum in a long time but have definitely wanted to over the last year as most of my friendship went digital.

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59 minutes ago, Pyroteq said:
  • TL;DR - Take all the automatic weapons in Halo and just replace them with guns from UT or Quake. The end.

This is one of the better ideas I've seen suggested regarding the Halo sandbox.

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4 hours ago, NavG123 said:

Reamis gets an unfair amount of flack when he's the only one who has been keeping this forum alive.

tenor.gif

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2 hours ago, hvs500 said:

Really? It's just odd to me that they can create gigabytes worth of content but when it comes to programming 4 lines on a screen on 40 different things that's a big no no. 

 

That’s not really the point. It’s not they can’t do it, it’s if they want too. Ask yourself this? Do you know of a game with hit markers in one thing and none in the other? I do not. If you know of such a game I’d like to know 

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10 minutes ago, Reamis25 said:

That’s not really the point. It’s not they can’t do it, it’s if they want too. Ask yourself this? Do you know of a game with hit markers in one thing and none in the other? I do not. If you know of such a game I’d like to know 

Every call of duty campaign vs mp? Every battlefield campaign vs mp. 

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17 hours ago, Reamis25 said:

My experience in coding isn’t high but to put it simply when coding hit markers they can just have it applied to everything(easiest way to go about it) . If they were to want to not have hit markers on grenades. They’d have to individually code each weapon, each vehicle, or basically anything that causes damage to have hit markers and decide what they don’t want to have them. The best solution from a coding perspective is no hit markers at all because that would just be annoying to code

I would say there's minimal complexity (relative to gameplay programming) to a feature such as grenade hit markers as the client and server are inherently doing state checks on objects and events in the play space. Applying this kind of check against any player / character or object the player may interact with (like a vehicle) is pretty trivial. Though, this logic could be applied to any programming - not writing the code at all IS more simple than writing any. 

Also this is coming from someone who is normally like, "No ITs mOrE coMpliCATEd thAn u tHiNk"

The logic behind it would/could/should be super simple too - like identifying an event such as your grenade exploding, performing a basic check for interacting with other player objects, and playing the hit marker client side on success. Classifying your objects, weapons, etc in a way in which these traits are easily inherited or managing the attributes in a config file somewhere in the source depot is a pretty easy and common approach. 

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10 minutes ago, heytred said:

I would say there's minimal complexity (relative to gameplay programming) to a feature such as grenade hit markers as the client and server are inherently doing state checks on objects and events in the play space. Applying this kind of check against any player / character or object the player may interact with (like a vehicle) is pretty trivial. 

Also this is coming from someone who is normally like, "No ITs mOrE coMpliCATEd thAn u tHiNk"

Can follow as simple logic as identifying an event such as your grenade exploding, performing a basic check for interacting with other player objects, and playing the hit marker client side on success. Classifying your objects, weapons, etc in a way in which these traits are easily inherited or having the attributes managed in a config file is a pretty easy and common approach. 

You were a server engineer correct?

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7 minutes ago, MultiLockOn said:

You were a server engineer correct?

Build Engineer more specifically but have also worked on some dedicated server deploying, hosting, scaling and automation stuff for online multiplayer games. I spend a lot of time in client code these days as I help developers integrate their changes into release branches / builds. 

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39 minutes ago, MultiLockOn said:

Every call of duty campaign vs mp? Every battlefield campaign vs mp. 

Tbh I don’t ever play the campaigns of those do they not have hit markers?

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7 hours ago, heytred said:

I would say there's minimal complexity (relative to gameplay programming) to a feature such as grenade hit markers as the client and server are inherently doing state checks on objects and events in the play space. Applying this kind of check against any player / character or object the player may interact with (like a vehicle) is pretty trivial. Though, this logic could be applied to any programming - not writing the code at all IS more simple than writing any. 

Also this is coming from someone who is normally like, "No ITs mOrE coMpliCATEd thAn u tHiNk"

The logic behind it would/could/should be super simple too - like identifying an event such as your grenade exploding, performing a basic check for interacting with other player objects, and playing the hit marker client side on success. Classifying your objects, weapons, etc in a way in which these traits are easily inherited or managing the attributes in a config file somewhere in the source depot is a pretty easy and common approach. 

Lot of faith in 343's ability to program here. I don't want to sound overly critical, cause programming can be extremely difficult for what you would assume is easy, but 343 has a poor track record overall though not always indicative of poor programming. 

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Some things in programming are hard.

Designing hitmarkers that can be toggled on or off is not one of them.

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37 minutes ago, Apoll0 said:

Some things in programming are hard.

Designing hitmarkers that can be toggled on or off is not one of them.

Ok I see in some cod story’s the hit markers are off, but that’s simply an off an on. There isn’t a weapon in cod campaign that’s got hit markers and another that doesn’t 

@MultiLockOn based on what you’ve seen does infinite have a solid sandbox 

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10 hours ago, Pyroteq said:

I'd really like to see weapons like that in Halo that make close-mid range combat a bit more interesting while providing some utility.

This is literally the most important thing for Halo to do in order to become fun again.  

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Again, the commando seems like it's going to be a problem weapon imo. Fast firing means it's extremely forgiving, 3x zoom makes it like a dmr, and if it's a 5 or 6 shot kill with that high a rof it's gonna be a spammy disaster. 

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9 hours ago, MultiLockOn said:

game design is just psychology

I would argue anatomy as well.  Humans have two hands.  Controllers have two triggers.  Weapons should have two functions.  

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