Author Topic: "Battle for The Breach" Firnfeld KOTH 3v3 and 4v4 feedback  (Read 826 times)

Offline Atruejedi

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"Battle for The Breach" Firnfeld KOTH 3v3 and 4v4 feedback
« on: October 31, 2016, 07:20:36 am »
sup skrubz

I emailed this to Muse and I wanted to paste it here as well just in case you fellows and fellettes haven't noticed this in the dev app: Firnfield 3 vs. 3 and 4 vs. 4 King of the Hill is coming and could be awesome. Unfortunately, you can't test it on your own... luckily I was at this past week's testing session and got to try it out! Here's my feedback (minus the italics/bold/formatting because it's a paste job; deal with it 8) ):

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Hi Muse,

First, let me preface this with: I'm sure Richard and I are pretty much going to line up identically in our feedback. I assure you we aren't the same person ;)

Next, let me echo Richard's suggestion about the name of the map... for the longest time, I was all about "Battle for the Big Gun" as the title of a Firnfeld KOTH map, because that's indeed the point of the map, IMO (currently it isn't, but we'll get to that). Then Richard blew my mind: name it Battle for the Breach, because that's exactly what we should be fighting over (the gateway under the gun where all the action typically takes place in Crazy King and DM!) and the wordplay: a breach, like a breach-loading rifle... and it's a giant gun... come on! It's perfect! So I'm with Richard: Battle for the Breach is genius and I hope you'll choose it over Frostbite Occupation, which is pretty cumbersome and a misnomer. This superweapon is obviously invaluable to the war effort and needs to be secured at all costs!

Now, to the meat: there is so much potential here with this map, but there are also fundamental issues that need fixed before the map can actually be fun and fair. Let's start with the biggest issue: the actual location of the capture point.

As it is now, we're fighting over the wrong gap.



As the image explains (I hope), the purple text is the area and location of the current capture point. This shouldn't be where the fighting is... and, as it currently is, mark my words, this will turn into a long range Lumber/Merc fight every match to nuke the ships sitting in the all-too-open capture area (there is literally almost no cover currently; in order to capture, you've got to be a sitting duck). Richard already attempted to demonstrate this turkey shoot strategy over the weekend, but it was hard to do when we were playing a 4 vs. 4 match with 10 people... aka, 8 pilots and 2 engineers spread among 8 ships ;). Either way... you've been warned!

Richard's Galleon in the picture below is where the point should be (aka, very near to what it is in Crazy King!). The area of influence doesn't necessarily have to encompass the exact area of influence in Crazy King, but it should be somewhat approximate (I've put some yellow arrows on the image above in an attempt to make suggestions).

Also, question! What is the shape of the area around a capture point? Spherical? Rectangular? Logic tells me the area should be spherical to make it the most "even" area around the buoy... but I don't know how it works.

Once the capture point is moved to the gateway (labeled in green above), the fight becomes a race to get to the point, dogpile it with ships, then slowly pick apart the enemy. Will this be time consuming? Yes. Will the matches be long? Yes. Will there likely be an initial stalemate? Yes. Is that bad? I don't think so. This adds some necessary desperation at the beginning of the match (as with Scrap and Labyrinth) where it's an absolute race to get to the point as soon as is god damn possible; otherwise, if the enemy captures before you, they just keep a'tickin' up their score... an intense initial sprint toward the middle to block the point from the enemy would be in line with these other maps and encourage speedy ships and coordination/teamwork before the match even begins. Fast ships run to block/capture, flaking ships move into position to reinforce or whittle away at the enemy, etc... lots of potential here! I'm excited!

But speaking of spawns... as it is now, there are huge problems. Lemme try to explain... with this picture of the map.



First, let's talk pure positioning and the equity between spawns... well, it doesn't exist. Consider the following numbers...

Blue Spawn pixel distances (approximate) from the current capture point:
1. Front Spawn 304
2. Rear Spawn 216
3. Southeast 330
4. Northwest 264

Red Spawn pixel distances (approximate) from the current capture point:
5. Front Spawn 389
6. Rear Spawn 232
7. Southeast 329
8. Northwest 262

What does this mean? Well, the Red and Blue "rear" spawns (2 and 6) are completely different. In fact, the Red Rear Spawn is 28% further away from the point compared to the Blue spawn. Why would anybody ever choose this point? How was this not noticed during preparation?

Spawns 1 and 5 (the "Front" spawns) are relatively more fair numerically, but still flawed in practice. While Red's distance from the point is still 7% further away (and I agree, this isn't much, but it all adds up), more important is the positioning relative to the area where the teams are going to camp and stalemate on each side of The Gun (see the first image for these camping areas)... I'd actually argue that Red's Front spawn is more advantageous to them because of the mountains screening them as they approach the capture point... they can dogpile the side of the gun very quickly, whereas Blue's spawn is in open air on the approach to The Gun... meaning they are going to be taking fire on the approach from Red Team once Red is in position if Blue spawns at their Front spawn. Yikes. No good.

Now let's talk about the "flanking" spawns in the Northwest and Southeast...

The Southeast and Northwest spawns, when speaking about their distance, seem fair (equidistant from the point for all intents and purposes :))... but still unfair for all practical reasons. Spawn 3 provides Blue with an amazing flanking opportunity which will be seized upon every match... they can dart forward, using the mountains as a screen, and approach the camping Red ships with relative impunity. Blue will constantly be flanking from this position, and who could blame them? Yet the same spawn in the area for Red team (spawn 7) doesn't provide any flanking opportunity because of topography: while Blue can easily run behind the mountains from Spawn 3, Red has to charge into open skies from Spawn 7. This isn't to say that these are bad spawns, it's just unfair to Red and gives Blue a big advantage, especially when you consider the Northwest spawns...

Since Blue is given a great flanking opportunity in the Southeast, you'd think Red would be given the same chance in the Northwest... but nope. Because of the topography, it takes Red a very long time to do anything from this spawn, and they're forced to go through enemy spawn 4 to execute any maneuvers (whereas Blue in Spawn 3 can avoid the enemy entirely). Spawn 4 here is a decent spawn, just bread and butter. Doesn't provide a good flank (and doesn't need to), but allows another safe angle to shore up reinforcements.

Nitpick: Spawns 3 and 7 should point the ship northwest (toward the center/point) and spawns 4 and 8 should point the ships southeast (toward the center/point). However, all of the following is irrelevant once the point is changed to hover over the gateway/breach anyway... so... hm.

Also, it's very important to note: the initial spawning of the teams places them extremely close to the point in pack formation. All 4 ships of each team are right beside each other (which is fine!), but the very short distance of the journey to the center means everybody gets there at the same time and that ship choice doesn't matter because slow ships arrive just as quickly as fast ships. Compare this to Scrap, where taking a Galleon or Junker can fuck your team if you aren't smart... and that's how it, indeed, should work! Fast ships have the advantage of arriving first, while slow ships provide the firepower to the team moments later. Right now, fast ships aren't needed. Just jam 4 Galleons up their ass with a quick dogpile at the beginning and it's game over, man. Game over!

Lemme try to give you a shortlist of what needs to be changed to realize the amazing potential of this map:

1. The capture point must be moved to be above the gateway/breach.
2. The area of influence/capture needs expanded/enlarged.
3. The initial spawning needs to be pushed significantly farther away from the capture point.
4. Spawns need to be more evenly, fairly, and logically placed.
5. Name it Battle for the Breach
6. Profit as it becomes an extremely popular map and breathes fresh air into Skirmish.

The only relatively small fear I have is that it will, indeed, turn into somewhat of a grind... but, guess what? Many maps are already a grind, so I'll take that risk and it can always be addresed later if need be!

Here are my graphical suggestions for spawns and the capture point location/area of influence...



Let me try to explain this as well as possible...

Spawns 1 and 5 are "equal" and the same distance from the capture point.
Spawns 2 and 6 are "equal" and the same distance from the capture point.
Spawns 3 and 7 are "equal" and the same distance from the capture point.
Spawns 4 and 8 and 9 are "equal" and the same distance from the capture point.

1/5 are the shortest, most direct, and riskiest approaches. It's pretty much "open season" to attack these ships during their approach because of map topography and available cover.

Spawns 2/6 are farther away than 1/5, but are relatively direct approaches to the point and provide a tiny bit of cover during the spawn. There is no "open season" in this spawns.

Spawns 3/7 are the Southeast flanking spawns. Based on topography and likely areas of attack/approach, these are much more fair to each team.

Spawns 4/8 are the relatively "safe" flanks that are the same distance from the capture point as spawns 2/6. They just provide a different vector for attack.

I'll admit, because it's impossible to even load this map alone to fuck around with it, these spawns might not be perfect, but I hope you appreciate the intention. The two concern you might have are, first, "Blue spawns 1/2/4 are much more spread out than Red spawns 5/7/8."

Well, you're right.... but that was a measured consideration because of map topography. Not much else can be done without modifications to the map itself. That's the nature of the beast, I guess.

Second: "Spawn 9???" This is an alternative idea to spawn 8... Spawn 8 was for that "safe" area and potential flank, but 5 could serve the same purpose... You're probably thinking, "Feels like there should be a red spawn somewhere around G5..." Well, you're probably right, but I was trying to make the spawn/approaches/distances/cover the most fair. Perhaps include 8 and 9? Red would have 5 spawns, then, though... I don't know. Or replace Spawn 6 with Spawn 9 (since, again, they're the same distance from the point). I'm just making suggestions!

So! Thoughts?

I hope this helps. I consider this map my baby; I've been pushing for it for ever and it's finally almost here! So let's make it as great as possible!

Atruejedi

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As usually, I'm always looking for others' thoughts.

Offline Solidusbucket

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Re: "Battle for The Breach" Firnfeld KOTH 3v3 and 4v4 feedback
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2016, 08:33:05 am »
What if you moved spawn 3 to spawn 7.

got rid of spawn 7.
moved spawn 9 south to the north side of mountain
got rid of spawn 6
got rid of spawn 2
spawn 1 and 5 remain.

I'm thinking spawn 1 and 5 will be the "get the shit over there!" spawns
The spawns to the west are the "lets move in slow and maybe get some approaching shots off / maneuver without being seen / try our luck at some medium shots"
The east spawns are the "lets do long range / long flank / super sneaky squirrel moves"


However, isn't KOTH normally shared spawns? They aren't color coded?




Offline Richard LeMoon

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Re: "Battle for The Breach" Firnfeld KOTH 3v3 and 4v4 feedback
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2016, 06:12:43 pm »
I have actually not had time to make out an in-depth feedback yet. Well, I did have time, but I went to the beach instead for... um.... Water Hazard research. Totally research on ways to improve water Hazard and turn it into... um... a KotH and CK set of maps.

*runs off to look at Water Hazard to see if he can back up these wild claims*

But ya, this is pretty much the complete discussion we had during the testing, along with more talk of improving AI and being able to take AI ships as allies allowing more testing to happen. GLaDOS would be sad that we missing some testing due to the lack of testing subjects. Better AI for science!

Offline BurntOutMan

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Re: "Battle for The Breach" Firnfeld KOTH 3v3 and 4v4 feedback
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2016, 11:16:43 pm »
Maybe you can put a spawn on the lateral sides to allow for a flank manuver