Author Topic: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)  (Read 28221 times)

Offline Replaceable

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A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« on: August 24, 2014, 09:08:55 am »
Before you read this all be warned I'm going to write each point on a new line - for ease of reading

Oh god this is so long. Apologies.

Also the subtext in square brackets is me (maybe?) pre replying to stuff you guys are gonna say. Like counter arguments but with that angsty teen feel we all hate.

Competitive Guns of Icarus Online features 2v2 death match- first to 5 points wins.
Earning a kill earns you a point. Simple.
In order to kill ships in Guns of Icarus Online you must first do enough damage to hull armour.
Once the hull armour is broken you can destroy a ships permanent hull.
Once all of the permanent hull is down you earn a kill. Sweet. One more point closer to winning!
 
Okay cool!
So you're saying all i need to win is to kill them?
So then.
How do i remove hull armour as quickly as possible?
And what does the most damage vs. Permanent hull?

Well depends close range? Or far away?

Well since close range killing is more reliable than sniping.

[spare me by not telling me how great your sniper crew is.]
[Close range is SO much more reliable and we all know it.]
[Reliable=easier=less chance of failure]

And 3/5 competitive maps feature very CQB.

[Duel, Paritan, Canyon]
[Also spare me by not informing me of how canyon is snipey sometimes- I know.
There is no reason to snipe here- sure whine at me i don't care.
You can show me a team playing sniper. They are foolish for doing so.
But even Fjords succumbs to brawling- look at Rydr-HRA HC Final 2nd match.]

Let's go for close range then.

Well the best gun for hull strip at close quarters is the Gatling.
Cool! How fast does it remove hull armour?
With repairs? Like a clip and a bit most of the time.

(Well for the ships that are actually commonly used anyways. Yes 2 for the galleon I know.)

Okay and how about armour. Flak's good against armour right?
It has arming time so at close range it's not all that good.
Oh.
A banshee?
Too slow. Not enough DPS. (Although easier to hit with might I add.)
Oh um what's left?
Try a mortar.

Well done you can now kill ships really fast as that is what you need to win in competitive Guns of Icarus Online.

What I'm saying here by talking to you as if you're all powder monkeys is this:

The Meta exists as in order to win competitively all you need to do is kill ships- nothing else.

Sure you can bring heavy disable. But you lose killing power.

[But ma mercuries / Artemii.]
[It would disable it sure. And it still has armour strip/perma kill.]
[But, it would take far too long to kill. An ally would be there to help before that happened.]
[But in general with disable ships- oh look now I have disable guns- it's harder for me to earn points now. Because I'm not optimised for killing.]

I read a bit on Game Theory once.

All I remember from it is this: "When designing a game if you give the players a way to easily win. They will always choose that option." [To paraphrase somewhat]

And 'win' as written above there doesn't mean just win the match. It can mean strip hull. Or destroy Perma.
Gat is best at the former. At close range.
Mortar is best at the latter. At close range. (But kinda farish)
In a Competitive scene that favours close range.
Therefore the game inadvertently forces this combo to be used leaving little room for anything else.

The Meta is like that ring that Frodo has.
 
One build to rule them all.

It corrupts too. (I personally think look at all the noobs using it.)

Also like the one ring- it needs to be destroyed.
Or we make more rings to spice things up a bit and not have the best build for x or best build for y.
Just builds you know? Or we move middle earth to like Miami. That'd be funny.

For the Meta to change. The following needs to happen: [*whiny voice* but the Meta doesn't need to change. *sigh* It's boring. me: oh look a gat mortar- how unexpected and original and interesting. But with more swearing. And also since to counter it with disable you lose killing power- not having the meta is sub-optimal scrublord.]

The competitive scene needs embrace games that aren't about just killing. Maybe some CP, or a new game mode. Just an alternate way to win. As now ships with other purposes will be used- like disablers (so blender ships heavy carronade, artemis, even mercuries.) And maybe faster ships etc. Ships that are there for defending an area. Builds for other things, y'know? since it's not all about killing anymore.

Maps that favour more diverse engagements. (so not OH GOD HE'S RIGHT next to us kind of distance)
By diverse i mean not who can gatling gun first.
          so sniping then? No. another dunes map- as sniping often becomes a bit of a 'cold war simulator.'
                         I.e. both teams want to win but they don't really want to stick their necks out first for fear of dying.
That's almost as boring as gat/mortar.

[what kind of map do you propose then?
how should i know- i dont design games.
 One that doesn't favour brawling all day erry day I suppose.
Terrible idea- what a scrub.
Remember just because i dont know the exact thing i would do here to solve the issue - doesnt take away from the point.]

And maybe more ways of achieving the goal of killing? Like more guns. Or skywhales. Hmm.

Summary:

(but without content. get rekt TL;DR guys.)

I understand why there's a Meta.
I think this is bad.
Points on how to not have a meta.

Don't hurt me.

But yet at the same time

Come at me.

Offline Alistair MacBain

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2014, 09:24:32 am »
I totally disagree.

A year ago there was alot of sniping happening. Then there were the artemis spams. And then there were the killteams.
There is always someone who figures out a way to wreck the current favorite of the month. Yes gat mortar and metamidions are strong.
Ever seen them get wrecked without any fight back by a brawling mobula?

And this whine about meta and better not have a meta exists in every game. Every esport title has this.
LoL has his 2-1-1-1 split which was whined about for quite a time.
Starcraft has its features of the month which are claimed meta and are whined about.

This is how things go. There will always be a build thats dominant at a certain time. But there will always be the time when those dominant builds get wrecked and vanish.
I like the current state of the game. You can see various builds on various maps with various ships.
Yes some ships are underused and id like to see them more. But that is not an issue with the meta itself. Thats an issue of those ships.
For example ... ive explained the issues of the spire in another thread. On Saturday we saw how good one spire can be in a 3v3.
You cant balance for every situation. Aslong as theres a situation for everything im fine.
Dont whine about things and rather take the effort to make them work and nerf/buff as little as possible.

And i see alot of Goldfishs in competetive these days. I rarely see the all pyramidions which we had in the first week of Hepheastus. When i remember the recent competetive scene i see mobula, goldfish, sometimes a galleon and yes for sure i see junker and pyra. But thats no problem.
Watch the SR a few weeks ago (dunno which one precisly) and you even saw a brawl spire killing metamidions and win.

Offline pandatopia

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2014, 09:28:16 am »
Yea but you can't kill if you have no guns, and disable imo is still fairly strong.

I think the complaint is that gat/mortar is EASY, like ridiculously so, and more difficult guns provide less bang for their buck.

Long range weapons simply do not have enough kill power unless you're on like a completely open map to kill a brawler before they get close.

Maybe increasing the arcs on sniping weapons is a good way to increase their usability without tipping it over with more damage.

Offline Crafeksterty

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2014, 10:06:39 am »
Quote
Dont whine about things and rather take the effort to make them work and nerf/buff as little as possible.
This

One of the reasons why im sticking with spire. The way the ship works gives me the way i want to control engagements. Despite it being glassy.
My typical Hwacha + 2 gats and mortar spire is a typical meta-ish brawl spire. The double gat and mortar is not giving me any fighting chance at all.
It is the hwacha. The hwacha disables the ship so that i no longer recieve major damage and instead am the only one doing damage back.
That way, a slow ass giant glassy spire that shouldnt be able to fight up close, is actually able to fight up close (and kill pretty fast).
Now even with that, the ship itself does need soe tuning. Other than that, the ship does have its intended purposes.

Another thing is how good a typical Pyramideon is. That is because its concept is simple.
It has 2 front guns and even add a ram to top it off. This is like 3 guns actually.
Not even that, its simple in the concept on how it should work, for every class. Pilots is, Ship goes forward, forward = pointed guns.
Engineer has a place to repair important components, baloon near second gunengineer, one last gunner can shoot other gun.
People use this, and make it strong.

If more people would play spire, i swear ide see better pilots that fly it better than me.
Im saying that because the spire is so flexible that its not at all predictable in what it can do. Ive got the tech, its just my skill is usually rusty.
So if more people would fly it you would see alot of crazy and seemingly unneffecient builds or meneuvers that eventualy work.


Ive seen good squids that are all about disabling and assissting for the most perfect condition it needs to deliver so that his ally can deliver the finishing blow.
Its true that even that ship needs tuning. But other than that it can still be devestating if flown well.
Personaly, i want to see a hard ass squid loyalist that makes the squid as threatning as anyother ship. It is harder than other ships, but thats just to make it hard for what it can do.

The pyra is just an easy ship, however one of the boons to it is that it is inflexible. It in most cases is also predictable. But what it can do is very solid.

Offline Alistair MacBain

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2014, 10:36:22 am »
Sniper guns dont need better arcs. They already have decent arcs. Why sniping isnt used that often these days is cause its vulnerable to flanking to stay stationary and i currently see no team taking the effort to adapt and reposition based on the enemies position to stay in a good position immidiatly.
And longrange doesnt have kill power? The hell? Ever seen the oneshot or even oneclip kill of a heavy flak on EVERY ship. (even galli can get oneclipped from a hflak)
The reason why sniping is hard is that it needs time to shred armor, time the shot and stay on the enemy.
And imo that alot of teams that go sniping these days lack closerange abilities. Its fine when you want to kill on longrange but if your ally cant defend you on  the closerange than youve got an issue.
Another thing is that often the big killing power comes from one ship.
Remember the galleon+mobula rydrs flown? Theyve got two huge threads which you cant ignore or youre dead.

And yes gat/mortar is easy but as explained there are ways to counter it 100% safe. Alot of pilots these days are just not that good at evading. If you evade the ram of a metamidion youre safe in alot of situations.

Offline pandatopia

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2014, 11:21:50 am »
And longrange doesnt have kill power? The hell? Ever seen the oneshot or even oneclip kill of a heavy flak on EVERY ship. (even galli can get oneclipped from a hflak)

Right, and he's just going to sit there, immobile, while you hit him with the flak?

I do not mean on paper they can't do well - but even if you have a perfect accuracy flak gunner you are not going to succeed on the majority of maps without seriously better tactics.

PS for example, a hades/art pyra will kill/disable you long before you pierce their armor - and they don't need 3 guns shooting.

They suffer precisely because they cannot dictate range - if they cannot dictate range, and have poor arcs and maneuverability, when are you ever going to get guns long enough on them to kill?

Even just going up and down will destroy your merc arc and then you have no reliable hull strip from range.

Offline Dementio

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2014, 11:29:53 am »
No matter how easy it is to kill something with a gat/mortar pyra, the one that can disable this very ship can easily win in a 1v1. The kill ship can't do anything, but kill. You can't kill without guns, neither can you when you are out of arc or range. It can't disable to safe itself from damage it has to kill. When it can't kill, it often loses. In contrast to disable ships: 1 gun (artemis, carronade hwacha) is often enough to disable what needs to be disabled in a less amount of time than the killship would need to kill. You can't even empty your gatling clip before your balloon/gun is destroyed.

The one who shoots the gatling first, wins, because you have 2 of the same ships fighting each other. A similar theory would apply to 2 Blenderfish fighting it out: The first balloon pop wins. (Not taking into account allies and terrain to buy more time or even turn the engagement around.)

The Meta is the Meta, because it is easy to understand and easy to execute. What many people don't want to believe is that it is also easy to beat, may it be through evading (squids), disabling (goldfish), sniping (galleon, junker and mob) or even more killing power (spire and mob). (It really isn't hard to use 3 seconds of hydrogen or shoot a burst hwacha against a pyramidion to win against it.)
This is the balance of the game.


There is more depth in this game than just "When designing a game if you give the players a way to easily win. They will always choose that option."
The way to easily "win" in this game is through teamwork and correct positioning of ships, and not which gun combination strips the armor and destroy the perma hull in the shortest amount of time.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2014, 11:32:38 am by Dementio »

Offline Alistair MacBain

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2014, 11:32:38 am »
What daniel said.

And for the disable part ...
Theres sth called timed rebuild. Every crew on a decent sniping team knows how important it can be to time the rebuild. It doesnt matter if you disabled the flak aslong as it gets the hit when it needs to.

Offline Sprayer

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #8 on: August 24, 2014, 11:36:47 am »
There's also the timed re-disable. Totally fun to do.

Offline Alistair MacBain

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #9 on: August 24, 2014, 11:50:42 am »
And now we enter the funny part of mind games ;).
But even then the timed rebuild has a advantage cause he is the one to do the first move and its impossible to guess 100% when the rebuild will happen so you will most likely get 1 shot before you get disabled.

Offline pandatopia

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #10 on: August 24, 2014, 12:20:48 pm »
Speaking of disable, pyra guns are funny in that they are placed in a weird almost blind spot when heading dead on at the bridge. It is easy to miss the angle and hit the bridge instead, only getting the guns with secondary damage.

Yet another advantage of the pyra! OP.

While junkers, spires, galleons, fish have giant targets painted on their guns.

Offline GeoRmr

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #11 on: August 24, 2014, 01:33:02 pm »
Speaking of disable, pyra guns are funny in that they are placed in a weird almost blind spot when heading dead on at the bridge. It is easy to miss the angle and hit the bridge instead, only getting the guns with secondary damage.

Yet another advantage of the pyra! OP.

While junkers, spires, galleons, fish have giant targets painted on their guns.

Junkers spires and galleons all have MORE guns though.

Everyone forgot the pls buff goldfish threads after they became fashionable again.

Offline Mezhu

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2014, 02:18:48 pm »
Speaking of disable, pyra guns are funny in that they are placed in a weird almost blind spot when heading dead on at the bridge. It is easy to miss the angle and hit the bridge instead, only getting the guns with secondary damage.

Yet another advantage of the pyra! OP.

While junkers, spires, galleons, fish have giant targets painted on their guns.

Junkers spires and galleons all have MORE guns though.

Everyone forgot the pls buff goldfish threads after they became fashionable again.

This. Few months ago people were whining on how OP junker is. According to Urz mobula and goldfish were at the bottom of the ship potential list and in need of an immediate buff. Today people are asking for a Junker buff and a carronade nerf because carrofish is OP.
The so-called meta isn't written in stone. Don't like it? Change it. Some things will always be easier to play compared to others, doesn't necesserily mean they're unbeatable or too good. Complaining on a different set of ships/guns every couple of months depending on what is popular is just silly and counter-productive both for you and the game in general.

Offline pandatopia

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #13 on: August 24, 2014, 04:00:49 pm »
My last post was supposed to be tongue in cheek.

I forgot my :< smiley.

Anyway I just was saying how sniping seems to be unpopular because sniping ships typically cannot dictate range, and many maps having tons of obstacles. I have seen good positioning and kill corridors being set up, which is nice though.

Shrug, I guess I just feel sniping takes too much effort.

Offline Battle Toads

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Re: A word on the Meta. (more like.. more than a word AMIRITE!!)
« Reply #14 on: August 24, 2014, 04:04:30 pm »
Meta is always a touchy subject to talk about, but the reason for having it is because as you said, the only way to kill a ship is to shred its armor and pop the hull. Doesn't matter what build you have, in some ways it is very similar to the metamidion everyone hates. For example a carro-flamer is mainly a disable build, BUT it is still capable of killing and the flamer is capable of burning armor and damaging hull while the carro can take out balloons, which in the long run will damage hull as the ship sinks.

I still don't think that the gat + mortar is somehow the only build that works, a good disable ship can leave metamidions in a tight spot if they can't move when their balloon or engine is down. Gat + Mortar is just very basic and its used because it is easy, but metas always change considering junker used to be the super OP ship everyone wanted nerfed and the artemis was accused of ruining the entire game a few months ago (anyone else remember all the hate arts got before the nerf)

In short, no matter what happens we will always have a meta that will always change as the game goes on, it just happens that gat + mortar has been a meta build for the longest, but it is still not the perfect set up