Author Topic: Minotaur fix: Charging?  (Read 9803 times)

Offline Naoura

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Minotaur fix: Charging?
« on: January 18, 2017, 06:43:58 pm »
Hey guys, idea I had in attempt to fix the mino, based off of the weapons that we've recently gotten in Alliance.

Currently, we have 2 and 1/2 weapons that are charging (Counting the Lens Array). All of them have been rather well recieved, even if the Voltaic Coil needed some major balancing before it was considered useful. All of these weapons are for Alliance and Alliance only, even if some weapons might be ported over.

The Minotaur is a perfect tool to try and port the 'charging' concept over to Skirmish, as it's not doing anything useful anyways. I'll have the numbers crunched to perfection here in time, but here's the general concept:

Regular fire; Extremely wide area shot, scattering buckshot into a major area, but with multiple shots.
Charged fire; Narrow shot, focusing the entire magazine of the weapon into a single round, with all of the buckshot accompanying, but with the same turning speed reduction found on the Aten, making a charged shot difficult for lower level players or for a quicker ship.

The basis for the concept stems from the H-Carro. Before it's nerfs, H-Carro could be used more effectively for disable as well as anti-balloon. If using Heavy clip, you can definitely still disable parts of the ship quickly, but it's primary usage is not for disable, but for killing an enemy balloon. This proposed change to the Mino would give the mino the option to be an effective close-range disabler, especially should the the jitter be reduced for an uncharged shot. Max Spread, uncharged, would be heavily increased, while range would be heavily decreased, forcing a captain to get much, much closer to a target for an effective disable.

The charged shot, however, would be very different. Holding the charge will decrease the amount of rounds in the magazine, effectively 'firing' them by adding them to the round loaded into the weapon. Overloading, as it were. The charge would come at a cost of decreasing turning speed and possibly with a jitter increase for each level of charge approached. This would, however, reduce the spread at maximum range by a certain degree, as well as increase the buckshot count for each level, efectively tightening the shot into a more and more focused blast. This would take advantage of the impact that the buckshot has on an enemy ship, and make players choose between a half-charged shot that would have a high chance of simply flying around the target, or an extremely focused blast that would leave the gun with a very lengthy reload.

The overall thought behind this is to make the Mino the utility weapon it's supposed to be. At longer ranges, it would be more effective at supporting allies by having focused shots keep an enemy out of arc more accurately, but with plenty of RNG to keep it balanced. At closer ranges, the Mino would be more useful as a disabler, scattering scrap all over the ship to break as many components as possible.

Added changes that would help this concept work would be to decrease the damage per projectile, but increase the number of projectiles per shot. This would make using the Mino as a disabling Carro much more effective, while stacking the smaller projectiles together for the charged shot would make it much more effective at longer ranges, but would keep the level of randomness that the Mino should have as a Scrap Cannon.

And there you have it. A potential fix for the Mino and a way to bring charged weaponry over to Skirmish in a way that doesn't heavily destroy anything, and revitalizes the weapon that has been the community's whipping boy since it's nerf.

Offline Daft Loon

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2017, 07:11:30 pm »
I can get behind any attempt to make the Minotaur something better, I like the Minotaur but it has always been flawed. Prior to the most recent change it was versatile and fun to shoot but crippled by pathetic damage, after that change its damage is sufficient but its clumsy (increased scatter, slower everything) and the reduced arcs killed my 'beloved' almost functional Mino-fish loadout.

I've also had a half formed idea for using the other alliance gun mechanic - the shoot and then click to trigger from the gas gun and now heavy mine - discarding the buckshot from the Minotaur entirely making it shoot a something that a short delay after the trigger click explodes with a knockback and damage AOE.

Offline Atruejedi

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2017, 07:20:58 pm »
I love the Minotaur as it is now and think it's greatly misused/underused/underrated in non-competitive matches, but I agree it could use a "buff" and a charging mechanic might be the ticket.

Currently Heavy Clip is the only absolutely required ammo for the Minotaur because the buckshot spreads out so much. If holding down the mouse button to "charge" the weapon would focus that spread into something (almost?) as precise as a Heavy Clip shot, I'd be all for it, so long as this charging would greatly reduce the firing rate and not render using Heavy Clip moot. Comparing Heavy Clip to this imagined charging mechanic should result in: Heavy Clip fires fewer shots per clip much more quickly, but charging the shots without Heavy Clip fires more shots per clip over a greater amount of time. So long as my Double Mino Light Flak Galleon remains intact, I'm happy 8)

On another note... doesn't the Minotaur actually shoot compressed air? How the hell does that shatter components and armor? lolz

Offline Unarmed Civilian

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2017, 07:41:33 pm »
...but I agree it could use a "buff" ...

Remove clip size reduction on Heavy Clip.

Offline Atruejedi

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2017, 08:08:01 pm »
Remove clip size reduction on Heavy Clip.

I'm not against removing the Heavy Clip ammo reduction... but it needs some sort of downside. I do think a 25% reduction is a bit steep. I think 20% is much more reasonable, but I'm genuinely curious as to how you (and others) would balance it if it didn't suffer a clip size reduction.

Less damage?
Slower fire rate?
Lower gun rotation speed?

I'm partial to both of the latter options simultaneously. Slow down the rotation of the gun and make it fire a bit slower.

Offline Naoura

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2017, 08:32:09 pm »
1: The buckshot spread would be reduced greatly, and range would be extended for increased charging. I already stated that it would be put on reload if you fully charged it, so that greatly nerfs it's fire rate if you're doing half-charges.

2: Heavy clip is fine in the Mino, and it is literally required for it's use, since the Mino spreads so far it's impossible to use at any real range, that's exactly why I proposed the changes I did. To make it more effective at range. Heavy clip in the Mino when just using click arming makes it about as useful as a Carro at range, so as to balance it and to make the player decide whether or not to take the time to charge it or not. Heavy would increase the disable ability of the weapon.

3: The Mino fires scrap by using compressed air. The Arashi are freaking poor and have little to nothing. Compressed air and scrap would be the best explanation.

4:Don't know if that would work for the mino, Loon. The Mino I think has always been, and kind of should be, a wild-card weapon. That's a great concept for a different one though, some kind of radio-controlled detonation weapon. Rocket maybe? Or else some kind of depth charge-esque weapon? Simply lob explosives into the area, remote det them when you think you've got them in the radius?

Offline Unarmed Civilian

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2017, 08:37:48 pm »
Remove clip size reduction on Heavy Clip.

I'm not against removing the Heavy Clip ammo reduction... but it needs some sort of downside. I do think a 25% reduction is a bit steep. I think 20% is much more reasonable, but I'm genuinely curious as to how you (and others) would balance it if it didn't suffer a clip size reduction.

Less damage?
Slower fire rate?
Lower gun rotation speed?

I'm partial to both of the latter options simultaneously. Slow down the rotation of the gun and make it fire a bit slower.

It has a downside. It's not Burst or Greased. Opportunity cost. Balance compared to normal ammo is not what should be considered, it's balance compared to the ammos that would be used otherwise. Normal is not viable to begin with, the only time it's used is by engineers running Lesmok to the point where it's basically the alternate mode of Lesmok.

20% is a 5% improvement on a downside that is so steep that it's unusable unless it's effectively a 0% downside (H carro and flares). The only other gun it sees use with (light carro) primarily runs incendiary instead due to extreme synergy. And when they don't they're still using greased.

The reduced clip size  should be removed entirely in my opinion. It would still be a situational pick over the raw power of Burst and Greased as they are simply better in most situations, but at least it would be viable outside of flares and H carro.

If it needs a downside they could use its original downside: -10% velocity. Slower fire rate and less damage both reduce its DPS and the reason it's not viable is due to lack of DPS, so I'm against those. Lower gun rotation speed sounds perfectly fine.


Removing the downside of heavy clip would buff the Minotaur by around 30%. You get 4 shots instead of 3. That's a significant buff to a somewhat underpowered gun right there.


It's a shame their balance guy doesn't read any of this. Makes me wonder if it's worth writing all this stuff in the first place.

Offline Atruejedi

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2017, 03:14:41 am »
It has a downside. It's not Burst or Greased. Opportunity cost. Balance compared to normal ammo is not what should be considered, it's balance compared to the ammos that would be used otherwise.

Well, stop right there. We come from two completely different schools of thought. Our ammo philosophies are radically different. I think normal ammo should always be viable and that the additional ammos should provide different options for the gun into which that ammo is loaded. You say it's not Burst or Greased, and that's the downside. That's exactly why I've been calling for Muse to #NerfBurst and #NerfGreased for months now.

That being said, since we're from different schools, it's pointless for me to address the details of your post beyond that point...

Quote
It's a shame their balance guy doesn't read any of this. Makes me wonder if it's worth writing all this stuff in the first place.

...except that. 8)

Offline Daft Loon

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2017, 05:07:53 am »
Remembering back a fair way we actually had for a while roughly the same thing as this charging idea more or less - Old Lochnagar on the new Minotaur:
-Sacrificed the rest of your shots to make one more powerful
-Massively reduced turning speed
-Significantly increased effective range

It was great, with bit of care you could hit things out near its 1800m maximum range and actually hurt them.


If it needs a downside they could use its original downside: -10% velocity.

Considering the main reason to nerf heavy clip was a dislike of it increasing the effective range on the carronades that might be a good plan. Taking that and running with it:
Heavy Clip
-95% scatter (because 100% looked silly to me)
-20% velocity

Still nerfs the long range balloon popping while allowing the carronades and Minotaur to attack components in a more worthwhile manner.

Offline Unarmed Civilian

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2017, 01:06:58 pm »
On a phone right now so pardon my formatting. Also can't really do complex calculations like this.
It has a downside. It's not Burst or Greased. Opportunity cost. Balance compared to normal ammo is not what should be considered, it's balance compared to the ammos that would be used otherwise.

Well, stop right there. We come from two completely different schools of thought. Our ammo philosophies are radically different. I think normal ammo should always be viable and that the additional ammos should provide different options for the gun into which that ammo is loaded. You say it's not Burst or Greased, and that's the downside. That's exactly why I've been calling for Muse to #NerfBurst and #NerfGreased for months now.

That being said, since we're from different schools, it's pointless for me to address the details of your post beyond that point...

Then what is the point of discussion? Is this supposed to be some mindless echo chamber? If we have wildly different opinions on balance then that is all the more reason to discuss why and talk our way to some common ground. Refusing to discuss merely on the grounds that we have differing opinions signals that you do not want your position to be discussed, you want it accepted as the only correct solution.

Now I'll reply to the actual substance.

Normal is not viable as a primary ammunition. It is a secondary. The tweaks and tradeoffs the other ammunition give puts them above normal in the common use case.

Lesmok let's you hit targets that would not even be possible to hit with nornal. Greased ramps up short term DPS for when time (of armor rebuild) is critical. Burst (ignoring clip size) improves reliability of AoE damage. Charged gives you single shots that deal significantly more damage at the cost of ammo capacity.

Are they strictly better than Normal in all cases? Burst gat and greased  H carro say no. But in their niches they are far better than Normal. Even 4 shot Burst artemis would still be better than Normal artemis for the vast majority of situations. And if you have normal loaded in the artemis you aren't using the ammo that gives the gun access to its full potential.

Even if there was a "better Normal" ammo, I argue that would still not be viable in most guns over the more appropriate specialized ammo. See Charged rounds.

Is the power of Greased and Burst a bit high? Yes. At the same time their power is a crucial component of the meta game and the balance of entire ships. Burst should probably have one less of a magazine bonus, but keep in mind that means Goldy might no longer one-clip Pyra anymore. Greased should probably do something to increase reload time to balance out the up-front burst damage and punish missing more. Maybe cause it to do half the gun's health on damage upon emptying the gun or something. 

On the subject of Heavy, it is not viable due to its lack of ammo capacity. The only guns where it is viable do not suffer it's full downside. If light carro suffered the full downside and had only 3 shots then Heavy would trump Charged in general unviability. Flares dont't count as they are not used as primary guns unless you're a dev or you don't consider winning important at the moment.

Offline Kestril

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2017, 01:51:55 pm »
With the ammos discussion, I think the specialist ammos should always be more useful than normal when put in the right situation. It's what makes the gunner class at least a little bit useful.

The problem is, the situations are too broad for ammo that are supposed to be niche. Greased rounds, for example, still have sufficient range. In a charge it's not worth poking with lesmok or normal beacuse you'll reach greased range by the time the clip is empty. The solution is go overboard by deepening and narrowing greased ammos niche. Make it more powerful, but also make the situation more specific.  The way forward is to make each ammo's niche more powerful, but less broad.

Normal ammo is just that, normal. It's the ammo you use when you don't have the ammo for that particular situation. I'm with Unarmed Civilian on this one, BUUUUUT I don't think the two positions are as far apart as they seem. As you make ammos more situationally powerful, normal ammo will be used when not in that powerful situation.  By making the niches of ammunition more specific, normal will see more use by filling in the gaps when the guns are not operating in the ship's niche role.

Here's what I'd do to greased:
->Increase greased's firerate
->Increase greased's clipsize
->Decrease greased range
->Increase greased's spread (to above old gatling levels)
->Increase greased's jitter.

Those changes would increase the value of greased ammo at close range, but decrease its value at medium and long range. This secures its niche as the go-to source of close-range damage, but also opens up space for other mid-range ammos to compete. And, it also gives the ammo a downside of not being able to disable components for weapons without AoE reliably. That's heavy's (or was heavy's) niche. Greased shouldn't tread on that.

I'd do this to burst.
->Increase explosion radius more
->Decrease clip size  by a % instead of increasing clip size
->Decrease ROF even more.

Now, burst ammo's NICHE is to GET THE DISABLE. Instead of a spammy ammo, it's NICHE is to get critical components when it matters.  It trades sustainability of shooting for reliability of a disable.

The old lochnagar was an example of the "narrow-but-deep" niche. It was the deepest and most narrow ammo available, and it was FUN to use and only powerful within it's niche.  The thing people have to start doing is discussing what niche ammos like charged and heavy should me.





« Last Edit: January 19, 2017, 02:02:30 pm by Kestril »

Offline Unarmed Civilian

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2017, 03:14:37 pm »
With the ammos discussion, I think the specialist ammos should always be more useful than normal when put in the right situation. It's what makes the gunner class at least a little bit useful.

The problem is, the situations are too broad for ammo that are supposed to be niche. Greased rounds, for example, still have sufficient range... ...The way forward is to make each ammo's niche more powerful, but less broad.

...

Here's what I'd do to greased:
->Increase greased's firerate
->Increase greased's clipsize
->Decrease greased range
->Increase greased's spread (to above old gatling levels)
->Increase greased's jitter.

Those changes would increase the value of greased ammo at close range, but decrease its value at medium and long range. This secures its niche as the go-to source of close-range damage, but also opens up space for other mid-range ammos to compete. And, it also gives the ammo a downside of not being able to disable components for weapons without AoE reliably. That's heavy's (or was heavy's) niche. Greased shouldn't tread on that.
Jitter and spread are the same thing in this game. See carronades.

In all seriousness I'm down for this idea. It maintains greased's role as the fast damage, high DPS ammo but gives it a more realistic downside. I wonder how increased jitter would affect weapons that don't have jitter.
I'd do this to burst.
->Increase explosion radius more
->Decrease clip size  by a % instead of increasing clip size
->Decrease ROF even more.

Now, burst ammo's NICHE is to GET THE DISABLE. Instead of a spammy ammo, it's NICHE is to get critical components when it matters.  It trades sustainability of shooting for reliability of a disable.

...

It seems like Burst was intended to be the SPAMSPAMSPAM ammo with its current stats. But we already have that in Greased. If these changes were to go through, I think the decreased clip size and lower rate of fire should combined equal about the firing time of standard rounds, if for no other reason than to see how it would perform at that level.


As for heavy clip's niche, it is obviously concentrated firepower and precision. Its purpose is to focus all the firepower of a normally imprecise gun into specific targets. Personally, I think a loss of range or increased difficulty in predicting and tracking target movement would be a fair downside for an increase in precision. That I don't think would be fair is lowering its damage capabilities, as at a certain point it works against itself to the point where you might as well just use greased or even normal so that more damage connects by virtue of simply having more damage.

So reduced velocity, reduced range, and reduced gun handling would be what I would target as downsides. Give up versatility or usability for more precision. I would personally choose shell velocity to make it harder to hit with but more precise. An ammo that increases the skill floor and the skill ceiling of a weapon and isn't Loch.

Lesmok, an ammo used to help improve long-range accuracy, already uses reduced rotation speed as a downside and has a much stronger upside (much more range) than heavy clip to counter-act its clip size reduction. I don't think people would be against Heavy clip having a rotation speed downside if it had its clip size restored.

Offline Kestril

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2017, 03:59:22 pm »

Jitter and spread are the same thing in this game. See carronades.

In all seriousness I'm down for this idea. It maintains greased's role as the fast damage, high DPS ammo but gives it a more realistic downside. I wonder how increased jitter would affect weapons that don't have jitter.

iirc, Jitter is the amount the gun "recoils" after shooting every round. Spread is the amount of variance in direction the bullets have after leaving the gun. More spread means a wider cone of bullets. More jitter means you'll have a harder time aiming that cone.

If not, well, that's what I meant by those two terms. Just clarifying for the sake of clarity.


Quote
It seems like Burst was intended to be the SPAMSPAMSPAM ammo with its current stats. But we already have that in Greased. If these changes were to go through, I think the decreased clip size and lower rate of fire should combined equal about the firing time of standard rounds, if for no other reason than to see how it would perform at that level.
Let incindiary and heatsink become the spam ammos, I'm presenting a case for very specialized roles ammos have, but I do agree it would be interesting to see how it compares if greased becomes more specialized and isn't a catch-all ammunition for medium-close range engagements.

Quote
As for heavy clip's niche, it is obviously concentrated firepower and precision. Its purpose is to focus all the firepower of a normally imprecise gun into specific targets. Personally, I think a loss of range or increased difficulty in predicting and tracking target movement would be a fair downside for an increase in precision. That I don't think would be fair is lowering its damage capabilities, as at a certain point it works against itself to the point where you might as well just use greased or even normal so that more damage connects by virtue of simply having more damage.

So reduced velocity, reduced range, and reduced gun handling would be what I would target as downsides. Give up versatility or usability for more precision. I would personally choose shell velocity to make it harder to hit with but more precise. An ammo that increases the skill floor and the skill ceiling of a weapon and isn't Loch.

Lesmok, an ammo used to help improve long-range accuracy, already uses reduced rotation speed as a downside and has a much stronger upside (much more range) than heavy clip to counter-act its clip size reduction. I don't think people would be against Heavy clip having a rotation speed downside if it had its clip size restored.

The hard part about heavy is it's value depends on the relative inaccuracy of other raycast guns. It did have a niche in the gatling before gatlings became more precise, and a prominence on carros before their range was reduced.  I do think that heavy shouldn't effect clipsize, however, and I do think the tradeoff of precision/versatility is a good starting point to design heavy around. Still, be careful with slowing the rounds down. We haven't seen heavy hwacha in a while for extreme-range shots due to the speed slowdown. Just a comment.  I do agree that it should effect gun handling rather than clipsize.

Anyways, good discussion, I'll probably send an e-mail with a link to this thread. So muse can read it. 

Quote from: Naoura
4:Don't know if that would work for the mino, Loon. The Mino I think has always been, and kind of should be, a wild-card weapon. That's a great concept for a different one though, some kind of radio-controlled detonation weapon. Rocket maybe? Or else some kind of depth charge-esque weapon? Simply lob explosives into the area, remote det them when you think you've got them in the radius?
ACTUALLY, that's the alliance heavy mine launcher. I'm trying to get that one over to skirmish after alliance launch. It's a nice gun that's near the balance threshold already,although i wish it did piercing damage, but it's unique and flexible enough to stand on it's own.


« Last Edit: January 19, 2017, 04:22:35 pm by Kestril »

Offline Naoura

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2017, 10:33:34 pm »
nice to see the ammo discussion... but would anyone have any actual critique as for the changes idea...?

Offline Kestril

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Re: Minotaur fix: Charging?
« Reply #14 on: January 20, 2017, 05:00:27 am »
I like the idea of it charging to reduce spread. it's distinct from the other guns and offers the minnow a greater degree of usefulness at range with a sufficent skill floor not to make it instant-win.