DiabolusUrsus

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  1. The actual customization starts a bit later in that video. Nice synopsis! More specifically though, whether the effects of modding are finely or coarsely-grained is a secondary concern next to 'modding as progression' vs. 'modding as customization.' I would prefer for progression upgrades to be guaranteed and available immediately once reached, in contrast to mods which are dropped entirely randomly and completely hidden from players before discovery. I believe mods would be better suited to enabling playstyle expression, where players can take increases in power in exchange for a narrowed scope of use for each weapon.
  2. I'm sorry. Reviewing it, that was harsher than I meant for it to be, and it was a rhetorical statement where I fully expected that it would not actually hold true. I didn't mean it as a critique of your person, though I understand why any person would take it as such. I agree that there's nothing left to discuss, because clearly the discussion was so disconnected and conflicting from the beginning that it was attempting to prove two completely incompatible points. To be perfectly clear, while this particular conversation has "crashed and burned" so to speak, it has not lowered my opinion of you as a person, player, or feedback contributor. I may vehemently disagree with your ideals in this case, but I can acknowledge them as "reasonable" in a self-contained sense such that they would probably be beneficial to the game as it currently is. I don't know that I can successfully reassure you that I'm not judging you but rather the arguments you have presented, but please consider the gesture made. At the very least I hope you can understand why your statements upset me to the extent that they did, and either revise your concepts to remove those self-contradictions or else avoid raising the same critiques of opposing ideas moving forward.
  3. Empirically speaking, what you're doing is compensating for overpowered weapon stats by forcibly limiting the player's freedom to use that specific weapon. If we're going to continue accepting that avoiding triggering loss-aversion in players as a governing design principle, you can achieve a similar effect by simply adding incentives for them to use different weapons or otherwise switch weapons regularly without taking away the freedom they currently have to use a particular weapon indefinitely. If, however, we're going to hand-wave that particular issue... well... that opens up a whole new world of possibilities. Well, I wonder about that. Shotguns already have a 15-30 meter falloff threshold, and that seems to be about right for the tileset environment, after which they deal 50% damage. Rifles could comfortably fit into the 20-40 meter range, with Snipers being the only weapons that can deal full damage all the way out to the (IIRC) 70 meter rendering limit there. If it's really necessary you could simply double those values in the open maps, but I don't really think it would be. In my experience it's actually rather difficult to keep to actual sniper ranges, because enemies tend to focus on closing gaps - be it through movement or actually spawning/deploying on top of the player's location. Some objectives (like Drone Escort) span larger distances, but most of the others take place in a relatively enclosed area. Vallis missions have more free-form boundaries, but players are also pushed to travel more to complete those objectives (like in Exterminates, where apparently limited amounts of enemies spawn in different areas). I agree it wouldn't really be fair to put players up against enemies with 1-200 meters of effective range in that case, but that's why I suggested normalizing those values. If players really want to snipe at longer ranges, they have the option of either taking a sniper or building their gun for extra range (again, adding value to +range mods). While I happen to agree with the premise of nerfing player power, the latent hypocrisy of your reasoning is staggering to me. The subject of loss-aversion is, once again, rearing its ugly head. What's more, I can't accept that your proposal is actually offering players any measure of meaningful choice. As I illustrated in my previous reply, your combined paradigms of slot limitations and requiring different weapons for different builds simply cannot coexist if your objective is offering players choices. You are offering players 1 "good" choice and X number of "bad" choices to go along with it. That's a textbook false choice, and it's no different from what we currently have. You may as well just slash the existing mod values (bonuses, capacity drain) in half, add dedicated utility slots, and call it a day. There's nothing this suggestion otherwise contributes on its own. Well, I guess that really was something you just said. This entire topic of debate started because you claimed that you could achieve the same effect of my trade-off system without using trade-offs. My top priority in this discussion has not been convincing you to change your mind about disliking them but verifying whether or not you could, in fact, achieve the same effect without using them. And now you're telling me that no, really, that was never your goal in the first place. I am at a figurative but severe loss for words. I'm confident that I have been both consistent and honest in communicating the purpose behind my trade-offs suggestion from the beginning, so this either constitutes a colossal failure to grasp the context of the conversation or you're just moving the goal-posts on me. You didn't have a lot of work to do to convince me. As I've mentioned previously, I am fully prepared and happily willing to throw support behind your alternate suggestions if, that is, they would indeed achieve the same degree of build diversity. I think your answer here has punctuated that particular line of inquiry, though. Yes, I am aware of why I dislike the current lack of build diversity. I don't think that lack of diversity is weapon-specific, though. No it doesn't. You're just not willing to accept the alternates. I sincerely hope that you can understand that my frustration with you does not stem from the content of your arguments, but the incomprehensible reasoning you are using to support them. As far as I can tell, there are 2 different rulebooks at play here: one for your ideas and one for mine. It's completely nonviable for me to stick visible penalties on mods because players would get upset, but it's fine for you to advocate for sweeping nerfs because players will magically be fine with that. It's completely nonviable for me to transfer progression to Mastery Rank because you hate the idea of being forced to use weapons you don't like, but it's fine for you to advocate for restricting weapons to innate "build types" because really, it's not a problem if a player can't use their preferred weapon when it doesn't fit the needed archetype. That's preposterous. Either it's okay to step on players' toes in pursuit of a higher goal, or it's not. Either it's okay to force players into picking up content they may not like, or it's not. You've pointed an accusing finger at me and claimed that I'm neglecting to consider the ramifications of my ideas for players who might not enjoy the same things I do, all the while calmly describing to me a system you've meticulously designed to make Warframe play one very specific way because that's the way you like it; everyone else be damned. I'm sure you mean well, but c'mon. Let's be real here. Don't try to sweep this under the rug as a 'personality clash,' either, because personality has nothing to do with it unless your personality is such that you're content to smile and nod when confronted with statements this paradoxical in nature. You need to own up to what it is you're actually saying.
  4. This isn't really a fair point to make, because you know for a fact that I'm not actually removing the progression. That you unilaterally reject my proposed transplantation of progression is irrelevant to the soundness of my argument, because it is not required to specifically please you. The typical feedback regarding Mastery progression tends to focus on its relative lack of worth - the absence of motivation to move beyond a certain minimum rank to unlock all the available content - than on its oppressiveness. Your arguments have regularly floated the specter of loss-aversion and player outcry, so please don't take this personally: Forced to choose between proposing an idea that would outrage the majority of players and one that outrages you specifically, I think my choice should be fairly obvious. To be clear, I'm wouldn't begrudge you fielding ideas that I personally dislike, and I view your alienation from my ideas as an unfortunate side effect - not a devaluation of you as a player or member of the community. I'm happy to search for ways to include you, but it doesn't seem like you're giving me much wiggle room in that respect. Weren't we just discussing how to add depth to that combat system? The first is not a particularly troublesome issue. Minimum/maximum bonuses apply universally across compatible weapons, so it is counter-intuitive to attempt balancing mods-to-weapons instead of simply balancing weapons-to-mods. If a mods don't play nicely with a specific weapon, you adjust the weapon. The same general principle applies to overall game balancing and adjusting the outliers. Unfortunately, for the second it's not at all clear what you mean by "finely-grained." I have no doubt that the principle works, but why do you even want it to? Wouldn't making ammo capacity relevant effectively make related mods mandatory? And wouldn't that only serve to disadvantage weapons with innately poor ammo economy to a greater extent than it does currently? What scenarios do you envision that would require a player to 'dip into their ammo pool' but grant them a reprieve afterward to replenish it? This comes across as jerking the player around by the horns for the fun of it rather than filling a specific balancing niche. This is pretty easy to adjust for. You balance the ranges loosely around the tilesets (I wouldn't use the cramped Infested Ship as a reference point, though) and just keep those values for the open world spaces. The only things you have to do to prevent it from causing players problems are apply the same restrictions to NPCs and enemies and be sure to prevent enemy accuracy from staying too high over larger distances. Most engagements on the Plains and in the Vallis occur across pretty typical ranges, and anything beyond that just adds value to +range mods and sniper weapons. What is that even supposed to mean? I am not attempting to transplant an entire system, and have only proposed taking a single idea - benefit trade-offs - from it. If anything, your proposed approach of implementing dedicated slots for specific types of benefits copies more from BLR than my approach does: Specific types of bonuses like +damage are limited to specific parts (muzzles/barrels), of which only 1-2 variants are allowed to exist at any time in a build, which is more or less interchangeable with only being able to slot 3-4 DPS boosts and 4-6 utility boosts despite using different quantities. Your paradigm of picking different guns for different builds also mirrors Blacklight's convention of different receivers filling segregated battlefield roles - there is no opportunity to make the sniper perform more like a DMR, much less a shotgun or assault rifle. Consequently, I don't think this particular stipulation holds much water. No, don't ignore it, because that's relevant. What are your criteria for evaluating how well the system worked? Because I can tell you with certainty that every single match was filled with a broad variety of builds, with the only "consistent" ones being the stock guns carried by newbies who hadn't actually unlocked many parts yet. As far as I can tell, that would qualify as rather objective evidence of the system working - players were obviously willing to engage with it, and encountered some measure of success independently of an established "meta" wherein players mathematically "broke" the available bonuses. So, I'm certainly curious as to how you would attempt to quantify its relative failure. The "genre" is irrelevant to anything but the underlying balance of the systems. Blacklight being PVP and Dark Souls being a pseudo-hardcore action game don't make upgrade trade-offs inapplicable to Warframe any moreso than L4D being PVE makes requiring teammates to save each other from enemy CC-locks applicable to Warframe. Your Space Marine example is a relative genre match, but based on what you've told me it's actually an example of the system being saved by a direct transplant from PVP instead of getting properly adjusted for PVE. If the devs had adjusted Kraken Rounds to be relevant to PVE the system would have fallen into the same homogeneity Warframe is currently exhibiting! I am not proposing that Warframe copy any PVP-specific characteristics, like making player TTK roughly equivalent to enemy TTK, or requiring all weapons to offer the same general level of performance. After all, these things are critically important to a good PVP experience but would be rather destructive to a PVE one. However, simple trade-offs are neither intrinsically PVP-oriented nor PVE-oriented, so your attempted disqualification in this case doesn't really approach being even tangential to the specifics of my suggestion. The fact that you would even consider making an argument in favor of this change shows that you must - on some level - be aware that the genre of the source game is not guaranteed to be inextricably linked to the nature of its mechanics. Unless there's some genre overlap with Warframe I'm not aware of? That was never my argue in favor of using trade-offs. It was my counter-argument to your assertions that a) the system probably wouldn't work anyway, and b) players would universally hate it because of loss-aversion. I never claimed Blacklight worked perfectly, but it would be difficult for the game to get positive reception if either of the above 2 statements were true, let alone both of them. My argument in favor of using trade-offs was, from the beginning, that they can be used to create a multitude of distinct specializations fitting different playstyles and can co-exist rather comfortably with buffs that would otherwise always qualify as "best-in-slot." I'm sorry you're taking this personally. For the record, my rebuttal wouldn't really apply to any co-op PVE scenario where there is no need to preserve competitive advantages for newer players relative to veterans. So assuming you didn't make that argument in a PVP context, you would be exempt. Let's also be clear that I am not mocking divergent opinion or non-conforming values. I am underscoring the absurdity of the skewed priorities directing the proposed idea in-context. Seriously, let's take it apart piece by piece. The problem was with the displayed penalties, not the effects of the penalties. Remember, the idea was aiming to achieve 'the exact same effect.' The change would make modified guns universally better than stock guns, destroying the new player experience all for a cosmetic difference. This was following arguments that I was not adequately considering the implications of my proposed changes. I can respect the difference of opinion that makes you inclined to dislike penalties, but can you see how it would be difficult to take that degree of pet-peeve fixation seriously? True, my response was petulant. I apologize for that, but I am human and subject to exasperation. This circles back to the whole 'PVP can't transfer to PVE' statement. Clearly, the only reason Kraken Rounds isn't used and abused in PVE is that it isn't really applicable. It doesn't matter that Space Marine's "balance is wonky" because you see the exact same wonkiness on a grander scale in Warframe already. Your point was that slot limitations could create a balanced environment where players were presented with more or less equally compelling choices for their limited slots... except that, in your own words, that environment is not balanced and the only reason the compelling choices exist is because the obvious ones were no longer relevant. This is a major flaw for your proposal if we are going to accept the loss-aversion-player-outrage aspect of your critique valid. I'll try to illustrate that flaw below. I'll begin by re-phrasing the question. Under what conditions would this produce a meaningful choice? Hold your answer for a bit, but keep that question in mind with regards to these next few points. You state here that you want players to pick different weapons for different purposes, rather than building them differently. In essence, you are preserving the concept of the "crit gun," "status gun" and "raw damage gun," where going by your earlier statements a marksman rifle would be an example of an innately crit-focused gun. Yet here, the main thrust of your dedicated slots concept is that players would trade out +damage or +crit damage or +status bonuses depending on the purpose of their build. This is entirely incompatible with your call for different weapons filling different roles! Remember my initial question: when would this setup produce meaningful choice? The long and short of it is that it doesn't. Your +crit damage bonus is always going to be the best choice for a crit-based gun, because if the benefit of the crit damage doesn't outweigh the benefit of simple +damage it's dead on arrival and players will never use it. But if players need raw damage over crit damage, their best option is to simply use a different gun suited to raw damage, and that's apparently precisely what you want them to do. Thus, +crit would always be slotted on crit weapons, +damage would always be slotted on damage weapons, and +status would always be slotted on status weapons. You expressed concern that my proposal would allow players to create effectively non-functional builds, so why is it acceptable to offer them objectively bad choices here? What is the value in dangling the illusion of choice in front of them, when it has no effect on players who don't care and only frustrates the players who would otherwise want to make that choice? Your quandary with punch-through here actually illustrates the above dilemma rather succinctly - your proposed system has no effective mechanism for handling bonuses lacking direct competitors, which is reinforced by your Space Marine example from earlier. Add in anything that is simply too good to pass up, and variety immediately goes extinct. In comparison, trade-offs handle things like punch-through rather tidily: Adding -magazine means punch-through is useful to players who are adept at lining up multiple targets or builds with ample amounts of CC, but limits its usefulness elsewhere. The penalty also indirectly makes reload speed more of a relevant consideration for automatic weapons specifically, due to their larger magazine sizes amplifying the effects of the reduction. Alternatively, adding -damage could allow players to apply damage to more enemies at once at the expense of reduced single-target efficacy. More importantly, though, your proposal stumbles into the exact same pitfall that forms the basis for your rejection of mine: Limiting DPS slots to fewer than the current 8 means you are noticeably decreasing player power and potential for 'progression,' even before you factor in your changes to status procs and elemental damage. To my knowledge, you haven't offered any means of compensating for that loss, so wouldn't that mean you're running a similar risk of incensing the loss-averse and sparking outrage? If you're going to try to compensate for that by giving them progressively stronger +DPS mods, then from a practical standpoint the only thing you've done is add dedicated slots for utility mods and there are simpler ways to go about that. --- I realize that my end of this dialogue is growing progressively more confrontational. However, I'm reaching my wit's end regarding how to approach your points in an accommodating manner. It's not for lack of trying, either - I've spent literally this entire day starting from ~11:00 a.m. up until now at ~10:00 10:40 p.m. contemplating and revising my responses across breaks and lunch in my work shift, and at home. For the potential offense or distress I've caused you, I'm sorry, and I'll excuse myself from this particular discussion to avoid provoking you further barring any meaningful steps forward.
  5. No, it isn't. The economic discussion was, as I noted, an aside. I clarified my point a bit in my next response, which was that the attached penalties sectioned the available bonuses into specific purposes. And citation needed on the minority issue, because the game did pretty well for itself before it was ruined by - ironically - a bad new economic model and neutering of the customization system. Well yes, a key tenet of my proposal is taking most of the vertical progression out of mods and putting it elsewhere, so...? Yes, penalties can - when applied inattentively - be done poorly. How does this prove they can't be done well, again? Saryn's rework fumbled because the devs were tunnel-visioned into trying to nerf Miasma and they didn't pay any attention to how the rest of her kit responded to the changes. I have no context for this comparison. So, in essence, players have the entirety of the power when it comes to dictating game balance and Damage 2.5/3.0 can never happen because players are too fond of Corrosive and Slash? Outcry or no, players will always be upset over something. If you can show me that the system doesn't work mechanically, then it would be plausible for the outcry to be ongoing and for these changes to have far-reaching negative repercussions for the health of the game. However, what most players are concerned with is power, not exclusively power from mods. So yes, while I would be stripping a lot of the power out of mods and reducing the impact player tinkering has on the game balance, I would be transplanting that power into more conventional, non-random, and effectively static progression. Yes, the modding paradigm would change drastically. No, that does not mean players must be losing a particularly painful amount of relative power. It just means that most of it won't come from mods. This is a terrible idea. For the express purpose of sheltering players from scary red negative numbers, you're screwing over new players by giving them starter weapons which are objectively worse than any modified gun. The system worked exceptionally well in BLR, thank you very much. The majority of the game's balance issues came from unmodifiable equipment like Hardsuits and Airstrikes, or weapons with limited customization like the underpowered Revolver (which only accepted custom sights and special ammunition). NOTE: Excluding post-Parity content, which was ported directly from PS4 and never balanced appropriately for PC to begin with.
  6. My point was that progression cost is more or less irrelevant to optimization cost, not that it serves no purpose whatsoever. The game has a progression cost tied to modding already and I see no reason to change that; I just don't consider it important in the context of hammering out how we handle optimization cost: slots vs. trade-offs. Thanks for the benefit of the doubt, and I apologize for any offense. I didn't mean that as a criticism of you as a player, and was more calling back to your own stated recognition that your distaste for the system was relatively subjective. 1. There are powerful and demonstrable benefits to the bonuses gained from modding guns, and they have trade-offs which specialize builds to emphasize particular advantages while accentuating disadvantages for the sake of fairness. For example, building a gun for increased running speed (lightweight parts) will reduce your accuracy and increase your recoil across the board, but have a less pronounced effect on hipfire. This is because if you are building for speed, you should be attacking enemies from behind at close range and killing them before they react. Conversely, this makes you more vulnerable to enemies who have a bead on you at range, before you can disorient them up-close. If you look at this build as "bad" or "negative" because it reduces some stats, then you aren't aware of why you would want to prioritize speed over accuracy and recoil. In that case, it's probably not the build for you yet, and you're better off sticking to the perfectly-serviceable stock gun. You'll notice that I already suggested Warframe weapons should be viable while unmodded. Point being, subjective distaste for a system does not make for an objective flaw in the system. 2. The ad populum didn't come out of nowhere; it was addressed specifically to your claim that "most humans are risk averse," which is itself an ad populum implying that most players would reject such a system while mirroring your own distaste for it. I pointed out that the particular aspect of the game in question was met with strong critical acclaim, which would put a bit of a damper on that statement. While it's true that players would PREFER no penalties over penalties given the option, it's simply a matter of not giving them that option (i.e., slapping penalties on everything). Once you do that, they can accept them. Moreover, it still sounds like they are situational and fairly limited boosts (i.e., not universal damage, and otherwise limited to backup melee options). This is an important difference to note, because +damage vs. armor is VERY different from +damage unless every enemy is armored. This would definitely be better than what we have now, and I wouldn't mind it going that direction. My solutions to this would be removing ammo capacity entirely and only balancing ammo availability through reloading, and making range matter to all weapons. I touched on that earlier with my projectile change, but this could also be accomplished by using damage falloff for hitscan weapons. I want recoil to matter more, but I also want Warframe to make recoil less nauseating first. There's something about the way that it's implemented that makes it sickening to me. I've handled games with far more recoil without experiencing this issue, and I'm not 100% certain what the problem is. I suspect that the FOV is problematic and the recoil needs a bit of "smoothing" to prevent the camera from jerking so erratically. I can get behind fewer slots, but tradeoffs are less about forcing build variety and more about adding build purpose. Revised: you addressed this question further down. I think I clarified my point at the beginning of this post, but let me know if it's still unclear. Well, let me know what you think of the expansion to my suggestion I already wrote out. Does it address these concerns? Yes, please. I don't buy this. What do you expect players to find that would be worth slotting over, say, Hornet Strike, without outright replacing it in function? How do you translate a "model build" to new weapons acquired later in the game? What reason would a player have to use any non-model build? This sounds like simple progression-based upgrade obsolescence, not build diversity. This is less of an issue if we use your idea for dedicated slots, but otherwise it begs the question of why such mods should occupy slots at all. Sure, you can equip newbies right out of the gate, but why can't their weapons already be good enough in their own right? Why are those mods needed? I have pretty thick skin when it comes to debate, and even then I know that you aren't aiming to be cruel or non-constructive. I agree that there is no point in clashing over diametrically opposed ideals, and I suppose it bears clarifying that I am not approaching this discussion from a "let's provide one unified proposal" perspective. I am using it strictly to test the viability of my own ideas, and absorbing/revising additional ideas from the points you raise, not necessarily looking to sway you completely to my position. I'll point you back to the start of this particular discussion chain, which was you questioning whether what I was envisioning was even possible to begin with.
  7. FYI, you can split quotes by line-breaking on an empty line within the quote. I disagree. Progression cost isn't a legitimate cost - it's something which must be paid eventually and really only serves as a time gate. It has no real impact on actual build choice, beyond "I don't have that yet, so I'm stuck with the next best thing," at which point you may as well look at the "best things" as the only ones which legitimately exist. As we have already seen with Warframe's current status quo, failing to check these boxes doesn't produce much in the way of variety. Sorry, but that's 100% a personal problem. BLR is (rightly) hailed as one of the absolute best customization systems in F2P games, period, and it offers unprecedented degrees of personalization. Even the stock guns are legitimately viable in their own right, so if you're looking at the customization as the game "taking away" stats you initially had... it's because you don't have an idea of the benefit you are aiming to obtain by taking other bonus stats and you're honestly better off sticking with the stock gun. As a bit of an aside, pre-Parity patch it actually had an exceedingly fair unlock model; parts were expensive to permanently unlock, but you could unlock every gun part using the free currency and you could rent parts cheaply to try them out in live matches as many times as you wanted. If you played post-Parity after everything became a COD-style laser and you had to unlock the same part separately for different guns, that would certainly explain your negative impression of it. The issue with this is that in order to avoid a simple 'best-in-slot' meta, you have to have substantially more strong benefits than slots and it is more or less mutually exclusive with straight damage upgrades. At least, I didn't find any direct-damage boosts for primary weapons on the Wiki - only for abilities (like the stomp) and backup melee (TacMarines). Would you prefer to remove damage mods altogether and make modding strictly utility-based? And do you have any idea how to come up with enough unique bonuses to overfill 8 slots? Comments like this make it seem like you are missing the point of having trade-offs in the first place. They are supposed to sort builds into specializations, not randomly and arbitrarily punish the player for abandoning their stock bonuses. It would be utterly nonsensical and pointless for a shield buff attached to Artificer Armor to negatively affect your Heavy Bolter, because the extra time spent waiting for your weapon to cool off will negate the time saved waiting for your shields to recharge... independently of whether or not your shields actually need to recharge. Instead, a shield recharge rate should be compensated for with reduced shield capacity. This would shift your build towards hit-and-run tactics, reducing the amount of time you can spend in the open firing but also reducing your recovery downtime between fights. Similarly, this would bias the rest of your build towards reduced setup time versus, say, extra magazine capacity. Penalties also need to avoid outweighing the benefits completely, as is the case with your -damage/+crit mod (I'm assuming +crit damage, because we are in agreement about nixing crit chance). I'm gonna round it off to 50% because that's cleaner, but the exact value doesn't matter provided they match as in your example: 10 damage x 2 = 20 damage 5 damage x 3 = 15 damage A mod like that only makes the weapon worse. You'd need a better ratio of penalty to bonus than 1:1 or even 1:2 for the mod to be remotely worth considering. Even if we use the "hitbox expansion" aspect of +crit "chance," damage is absolutely the wrong penalty to put on it. It should be either -magazine or -RoF, making it easier to land precise hits but making the weapon less-suited to handling hordes with massed gunfire. You'd also need to avoid penalties which accidentally compound themselves due to the bonuses. For example, I wouldn't stick -magazine or (using your Heavy Bolter example) +overheat on a fire-rate mod. Point being it's not a matter of just throwing penalties on everything just because; some actual thought has to go into what a player slotting each mod would want to do with them. Well, I agree that players should not need to use every Warframe and weapon in the game to advance their mastery. Were it up to me, we'd have hit MR30 by the time we used enough content to reach the current MR20, and Mastery itself would be separated into profile Mastery (total items mastered) and weapon Mastery (items of a specific type mastered). For example, using Dual Swords should unlock progressively stronger Dual Swords, rather than requiring players to use the available Rifles, Shotguns, Bows, and Pistols to get there. Profile Mastery would govern the player's access to the existing perks (Standing caps, loadout slots, etc.) and their ability to "break" progression by upgrading lower-tier equipment to perform at higher tiers. I understand and share your distaste for being forced to use uninteresting or straight-up unpleasant content - looking at you, Simulor and Drakgoon - but a complete divorce from expansion pressure is simply unrealistic. Prodding players into growing their arsenal is core to Warframe's monetization, encompassing everything from inventory slots to resource grinds and Catalysts/Forma/Rivens. It's not going anywhere, so at the very least it would make sense to use it for measurable, non-random progression on the player side of things. To better illustrate my distaste for randomly-dropped mods as progression, I have a friend who reached MR10 in the game who still didn't know what Split Chamber was. Players should have direct access to progression, without being at-risk of missing out on it due to simple ignorance or bad luck, especially in a game which fails to explain itself to the extent Warframe does. This could be addressed by simply giving players the "basic" mod sets, but if they are expected to slot those mods to "progress," why is slotting them a choice players have to make in the first place? I agree with all of this, actually. I wouldn't present a player with a particularly complex puzzle without putting them in an environment to focus more or less exclusively on that puzzle (i.e., boss arenas), and I certainly wouldn't make unprompted bosses (champions) capable of stumping players mechanics-wise. Champion fights should be involved, i.e., demanding most of the player's attention for their duration, but fairly straightforward and relatively brief. I'm not talking minutes-long showdowns in this case.
  8. I certainly don't disagree, and I wasn't meaning to criticize the Catalyst/Forma aspect of the monetization. I think the fact that I can have gone several years without really feeling compelled to pay for any of them is an indication of how fair the system is. However, I think that as long as modding your weapons confers some benefit (and especially if it can change your game experience beyond the simple pass/fail check we have currently) players will still be motivated to add Catalysts, Forma, and there will obviously be players who pay for them. I want to reduce the direct impact mods have on progression, but that doesn't mean they have to be useless. Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't that what we already have in the case of fusion levels and capacity? My Blacklight example was only meant to illustrate how players could be faced with required penalties (negative stats paired with positive stats) without those penalties feeling like something is being "taken away." The advantage of each custom piece is fairly obvious, and the fact that every custom piece has a penalty attached to it makes it easy to accept as part of the game design. (i.e., You want this shiny stat buff? OK, pay up.) IMO it would be better to move progression from mods to Mastery, because mods are random, and Mastery isn't. DE has already done the bulk of the work sorting weapons into different Mastery performance tiers, so I would implement something like this: Weapons are all rated on a MR scale of relative power, 0-15. Players can invest resources to upgrade weapons to perform in higher mastery brackets, up to 50% of their current mastery rating. So, an MR 16 player can upgrade any weapon up to the MR8 tier, and an MR30 player can upgrade any weapon in the game to perform at the full MR15 level. This creates a situation where players are encouraged to use all the different Warframes, weapons, etc. to advance their Mastery level, and they are rewarded with the ability to go back and upgrade their older favorites to perform just as well as their "default" top tier weapons. IMO this would preserve the type of power progression mods currently offer through Forma (heck, Forma could be a part of the upgrade cost, and require re-ranking like it does now) while making it decisively more accessible because Mastery isn't acquired through random chance the way vital progression mods like Split Chamber and its ilk are. In other words, I agree that progression is vital for keeping players interested, but I don't think mods are the place to put it. I agree with this, though I would be appropriating it for common = minor bonus/penalty, uncommon = moderate bonus/penalty, rare = major bonus/penalty. It would partially qualify as progression (getting rarer mods allows players to implement more specialized builds) while also giving players finer control over how they tweak their weapon's stats. I'm personally aiming to have the "specials" in Warframe integrate a little more closely with their factions than L4D2 "special infected," which (aside from the Boomer) really only share their player hostility with their allies. I can't really comment on Payday 2's dynamics as I didn't play very far into that game. I like the pacing of L4D2, but in my experience the special infected tend to rely more on avoiding detection - as soon as the team sees a Hunter it's dead in an instant - whereas for Warframe I'd like for them to play a bit more of a "front and center" role on the battlefield. To be clear, I wouldn't want to implement overly complex or confusing enemy designs. Warframe currently suffers from splitting player attention too many different ways at once, which is precisely why we have players resorting to "nuke everything" strategies so extensively. This ties back into my blurbs about the MOA and Osprey duplicates... overall we need to shrink the number of priority targets to just a handful. There might be larger pools of elite variants, but they certainly wouldn't be spawning all at the same time and would definitely spawn in fewer numbers. Yes. To clarify, Mook - generic disposables, like the Lancer, MOA, Charger, etc. Elite - specialized enemies, like the Commander, Nullifier, Ancient, etc. Champion - field bosses, like the Manic, Bursa, Juggernaut, etc. Note that some enemies (like a Bombard/Napalm) could be upgraded to champion status, and some enemies (like the Manic) could be downgraded to Elite status (with appropriate changes to abilities and behaviors to match). Yes, I agree 100%. IMO every game should be designed to support "lowest common denominator" play. If the minimum number of players is 1, then the game should be designed to be enjoyable for 1 player and scaled up for additional teammates. With regards to the "fast bosses" point, I also agree. I wouldn't speed up enemies like the Hyenas or Tyl Regor, and in fact I would probably slow them down by lowering their damage output and increasing their resilience a bit. The problem with the Hyenas is that they tend to nuke players a little too easily (which makes their mobility mostly just for show) and the problem with Tyl Regor is that he completely shrugs off player melee attacks and staggers them out of their combos. Having a melee boss that is more or less impossible to fight "fairly" in melee is a completely wasted opportunity. The general idea would be to have bosses fit into 3 loose categories: Behemoth - resilient and hit like trucks, but very slow. Ferocious - fast and damaging, but less resilient. Moderate - a good mix of speed, damage, and resilience. I agree with your sentiment with regards to spamming zillions of enemies in addition to the boss, but I'd be including mooks in the fight because a) mooks shouldn't actually threaten the player in most cases, and b) I want to use the mooks for restoring health/energy/ammo. So the mooks would serve a purpose beyond distracting the players and stacking extra DPS. Tyl Regor retreating and spawning Manics to delay players would be an example of something I'd want to avoid, though. For frame of reference, I detest the Razorback fight with a passion. It's a prime example of just jumping through hoops to me; I would much rather be directly engaged in fighting whatever it is I'm supposed to be taking down. I think the majority of this is an "agree to disagree" issue where we have different visions of the game, and that there isn't much point in arguing over them. I think we are in agreement on the top-level changes we want to see (enemy tiering, thoughtful selection of priority targets, periodic "miniboss" encounters, etc.), and getting too far into the specifics doesn't really help anything when neither of us actually has the power to implement (sad face). That said, the remaining quote is really the only part I feel compelled to quibble with. I can see where you're coming from on the zombie-esque side of things, and it certainly fits nicely within my willing suspension of disbelief. However, from the lore side of things this strikes me as inappropriate. I find it difficult to believe that the Grineer would invest time and effort into reversing traits which make them more effective soldiers as Tyl Regor has been doing, and we already see a partial offshoot of this characteristic (again, lore-wise) in the Ghouls. I definitely think there is a place for that aesthetic within the Grineer ranks, but I don't think it should apply universally across the faction as a whole.
  9. DiabolusUrsus

    Forma / Polarity Ideas!

    Suggestion 4: Applying a polarity halves the drain cost when matched, and simply has no penalty when mismatched. Mods are adjusted to have polarities distributed more evenly. Thus, Forma is still a tool allowing for certain "specialized" builds, but doesn't carry the negative of preventing you from using other builds if you feel like it. You just don't get the amazing capacity bonuses.
  10. Understood, though I'm still mostly relieved that my 'shotgun' sort of approach to throwing in details worked out to some degree. Fair point, though I probably have a bit of a skewed perspective on this in that I've never paid (that I can remember, anyway) for a Catalyst or Reactor. It's possible that I bought maybe a Forma pack, but the only distinct memories I have of doing so are from gifting them. To address the elephant in the room regarding this subject a bit, I would propose revising Rivens to modify weapon base stats rather than functioning as Swiss army mods. This would help them make more of a significant difference and hopefully preserve their perceived value. Yes, that's true. And failing a complete restructuring I'd be happy to have that in place of nothing. However, the rest of the changes I want go beyond simply wanting to squash the meta and are aimed at creating a more compelling combat experience. I feel like this isn't as big of an issue as you fear it might be. Your WoW example strikes me as a bit of a different scenario, because in that case the penalty was actively trying to stop players from playing. I think that in the case of my mod trade-off proposal, this perception would be mitigated by its universal application. If putting any mod on always carries a penalty, it comes across as less of a punishment and more as a simple reality. Returning to my previous example of Blacklight: Retribution, every single non-default weapon part (muzzles, barrels, magazines, and stocks) had stat penalties in addition to stat bonuses. It never felt like something was being "taken away." Instead, it was easy to understand that I was making necessary sacrifices to obtain advantages specific to my purposes. I think the key to success in this case would be successfully creating different viable playstyles for players to fit themselves into. If we only keep the current tank/DPS/GTFO status quo, then yeah, I would agree that penalties would not work out very nicely. However, that links back to aggro/suppression, non-random crits, and more varied elemental loadouts. I would be interested to hear more about how you would approach the alternate packaging, though. Agreed. I want to see a Warframe where enemies are a lot more specialized and actually behave differently. Shockwave MOAs and Anti-MOAs are the same damn enemy with marginally different deliveries. They don't impact the player's gameplay any differently, so they don't really have a reason to exist as separate enemies. The same applies to Mine Ospreys and Sapping Ospreys. The only difference there is that the Mine Osprey is completely inconsequential and the Sapping Osprey is legitimately dangerous. They otherwise fulfill the exact same purpose. Overall I'd for mook enemies to contribute nothing but damage, with the player massacring them en masse to recover things like health, energy, and ammo. Elite 'officer' type enemies would have minor powers used to support mooks and make them more effective. For example, Lancers might be aggressively disorganized on their own (shooting every which way at different Tenno and being very susceptible to distraction), but become more organized (focusing fire and tracking the same target more determinedly) in the presence of a Commander (and I'd scrap that Switch Teleport). Conversely, killing the Commander might make them panic and become more susceptible to suppression. I also agree that enemies should have more distinct silhouettes to augment their current "palette swapped" differentiation. This is more or less precisely what I would have in mind for champion-type enemies, though ideally they'd feature more nuanced designs than "moves fast, has lots of health, deals lots of damage." Sure, and I agree. Overall, I would want to: Scrap invulnerability phases entirely and replace them with invulnerability/resistance 'states.' My biggest gripe with Warframe bosses is that they currently operate more like a game of whack-a-mole than boss fights. It's almost always wait for boss to decide they are ready to die > shoot them until they change their mind > rinse > repeat. It's a very passive means of extending the fight duration and makes bosses more annoying than anything else. Sargas Ruk and Vay Hek's first stage are good examples of this problem. I would instead make the boss' state cycle actively in response to player actions. For example, I would take away Lech Kril's Gorgon and make him a lot more mobile (actively sprinting after players, using jump-slams, etc.), and make it so that any attack he launches while his backpack is damaged will put him in his vulnerable state. This creates a situation where it is harder to hit the backpack but the player is immediately rewarded for doing so. As a sort of sub-point to this, I would want bosses to actively defend against player attacks instead of simply no-selling them with impunity. If a boss is going to be immune to my Ember's fireball, it would be nice to see them dodge away or otherwise block it instead of being completely unfazed that their face is currently on-fire. These actions could also tie into player opportunities - the boss might cover their face to avoid getting blinded by Excalibur, but this could still give Excal a brief moment to get into a better position to attack a weak-point. Overall I think this would create an experience where bosses aren't immediately incapacitated by our powers yet the powers don't feel arbitrarily useless out of necessity. Add telegraphs to boss attacks and make them consistently avoidable. For example, instead of Jackal just constantly spitting out bullets and missiles with absurd tracking capabilities have it charge up and unleash barrages of more damaging gunfire in a sweeping forward cone like this, and replace its missiles with a sort of chassis-mounted 360° claymore launcher kind of like this. The barrage would have good vertical tracking but limited lateral movement, and the claymore-launcher would have complete lateral coverage but no vertical tracking. Replace Jackal's copy-pasta'd stomp with a faster knockback swipe, and you have a boss allowing players to make better use of its arena while preventing them from simply camping its legs like usual. Make all bosses susceptible to melee. The aforementioned methods of actively creating boss vulnerability would help a lot on this front, and I expect some extra utility to come out of melee 3.0. For example, landing a heavy attack on the boss as it recovers from an attack (e.g., chopping into one of Lephantis' legs after it buries its scythe in the floor) could stun it and make it vulnerable to melee. Similarly, timed parries or attack reflections could add some variety to this. Improve boss speed and mobility. Sometimes. I think it's fine to have heavily armored lumbering bosses, but IMO we need more bosses capable of matching us step-for-step. Having (almost) nothing but slow heavy-hitting bosses cushioned by invulnerability phase time-gates makes bosses fairly one-dimensional and outright boring fights. For example, I would keep Jackal's slower movement but allow it to reposition itself quickly with a charging rush or brief re-bound off of the arena pillars (like a big 'ol Hyena). Fair enough and I don't really see any worth in arguing over this at this point, though this was aimed at more co-operative play and the explosive nature of the gas would by no means be its main feature. It would also tie in to in-universe consistency - for example, cracking a Nox faceplate and releasing the gases inside would make it very susceptible to heat damage. That is more or less exactly what I had in mind, though it would still be implemented as 'damage.' It just wouldn't offer things like ±75% damage and it would convert a portion of the base weapon damage instead of stacking onto it. This is a bit different from what I had envisioned, but I'm sure it's workable and the differences aren't really worth quibbling over. You could already say the same about armor's current implementation; a damage reduction is just increased EHP. There is a method to my madness in this case: Implementing it as a destructible health buffer instead of a constant damage reduction justifies improving its defensive properties. For example, my intended revisions to status effects depend pretty heavily on health-related status like Slash, Viral, etc. not applying through armor or shields. If armor is just a passive reduction to all incoming damage which the player can only interact with through a very specific status proc (Corrosive), that wouldn't be a viable option. Armor would still offer damage reductions - 100% when not penetrated, and some scaling reduction (e.g., 20%, 50%, 70%) unless players over-penetrate it by a large margin (which would only be possible against weaker disposable enemies). Designing it from the ground-up to interact with player damage at all times and inevitably get destroyed allows for exploitable unit synergies like the armor repairs I mentioned previously. I feel that penetrable, destructible armor with its own health would better support more detailed locational damage on larger foes like champion enemies and bosses, which would factor rather significantly into requiring player precision and enabling multiple weak-points beyond just the head. Yes, agreed. Assuming DOTs are made less common, they could be useful for suppressing regeneration effects moreso than providing up-front damage increases. Moreover, shields could be further differentiated by capacity and regeneration rates. Disposable units could have fairly weak shielding with good regeneration rates, whereas heavier foes (Bursas, for example) might have higher-capacity shields with slower regeneration. Tying into your comments on Infested next, This is actually what I had in mind for making Heat damage useful against the Infested. It wouldn't significantly deal increased damage so much as the constant burning effect would prevent their latent health regeneration from being as effective. I think a moderate amount of innate regeneration with lifesteal as a bonus power in the presence of some sort of elite unit would be a good way to go. I agree with your summation of the existing problem, though I think my take on armor confers specific advantages that I want to keep as discussed above. Overall I would want to see the Grineer have more armor and less health, making them tougher to crack but rewarding players for getting to the gooey middle while accentuating the fact that they're supposed to be degenerating clones. To put it another way, I think that the Teralyst getting status immunity and Profit Taker ignoring Shattering Impact illustrate my gripes with the existing armor system rather well. DE constantly has to add in exceptions to armor-stripping mechanics because they rely more on the damage reduction than anything the armor actually contributes to the gameplay (e.g, blocking specific status effects). I would much rather have a game where armor and its counter-play are more directly integrated into the player's considerations at all times (at least, when armored enemies are present). Failing that, though, preventing armor from scaling would certainly be a marked improvement over what we have to deal with now. No worries; I think both of us reaching that boiling point so to speak helped step the conversation out of a loop.
  11. That's fine, but I think this illustrates a communicative difficulty that I'm not really sure how to approach. The 'fragment' you quoted followed an - I thought - fairly simple logical progression: You said "Stamina is not applicable to Warframe as a core mechanic," and then went through your own entirely separate logic chain to reach the exact same conclusion I did in the preceding post, which was that it could be useful as a replenishable energy pool for Warframe powers. So, I responded with: "...But... > quote of your identical conclusion > Isn't that what I just said?" I understand that we're touching on a lot of different topics, but if you're at the point where you're too frustrated to link consecutive statements in context I don't know that I can compensate for that through a text medium. Nevertheless, I'll try to re-frame the conversation. Nonexistent practical customization, palette-swapped enemy factions with minor mechanical differences (hitscan/projectile), and a meaninglessly complex tangle of arbitrary weaknesses and resistances generating a mind-numbingly shallow combat experience. Mods have no depth. They are a simplistic game of matching bonuses to innate advantages to amplify them, with no real variation or mechanical differences. Enemies are all more-or-less independent mooks serving no greater strategy or complementary roles within their respective factions, only capable of attacking the player and moving around to present them with moving targets. Elements are differentiated almost exclusively by damage multipliers and useful/not-useful proc effects, whilst all filling the exact same function within their respective builds. Radiation is the same as Corrosive is the same as Viral is the same as Magnetic, with the only difference being some of them are useful and others are mostly not. Mods Adding trade-offs to all mods, which changes them from "gimme" stackable bonuses into tools for specialization. Shrinking mod bonuses and weighting trade-offs proportionally, to reduce the overall impact of the meta and prevent players from creating "literally unplayable" builds. Implementing (as you suggested) mutual exclusivity and diminishing returns where applicable to encourage varied loadouts over multiple stacks of the same bonuses. Adding "aggro" and "suppression" statistics to give players foundations for cooperative play, and differentiate weapon roles better. For example, a high-damage LMG build which suppresses enemies and draws lots of aggro might be great for a tank build keeping hordes in check, and a stealthy crit pistol might be great for a support/assassin-type build dedicated to hunting down heavier targets behind enemy lines and exploiting their weak-points. This would also tie into making "lighter" Warframe builds more viable through evasion-based enemy accuracy debuffs and i-frame actions (parkour) instead of every Frame needing to spec into straight-up tanking or DPS to survive. For example, Loki could subsist more on managing enemy aggro and distracting them with Decoy in place of near-permanent Invisibility. Enemies Splitting enemies into disposable mooks, less common elites with supportive powers, rare champions more capable of going toe-to-toe with Warframes, and bosses, which allows for different specialized builds (e.g., imprecise raw damage vs. precision multiplied damage) to be variably effective within the same faction instead of universally "the best." Changing faction-specific behaviors to produce more unique "personalities": Grineer use aggressive squad-based pressure, Corpus use disposable Proxies to support long-range snipers/marksmen, and Infested rush forward from all directions as a loosely-directed swarm. Elements & Damage Reducing elemental multipliers and differentiating procs, while ensuring those procs can be applied effectively to the different factions. For example, I would make Heat a short stacking DOT and make Toxin a progressive debuff to target reload speed/attack rate and accuracy. The end-goal of this would be making different elements contribute to different "playstyles" and allowing players to pick a playstyle they like and develop strategies for approaching the different factions. Implementing proc interactions (e.g., Gas creating a lingering gas cloud which detonates when hit by Heat or Blast damage) to support combination attacks, further enabling the aforementioned playstyles. Limiting builds to 1 dominant physical status effect and 1 elemental damage type to prevent the typical bonus stacking and require specialization of some sort. Miscellaneous Through testing and community behavior (i.e., developing meta builds), actively nerfing the meta where necessary to ensure it confers some benefit but doesn't massively outperform the rest of the "average" builds. Changing armor from a flat % damage reduction to a penetrable "health buffer," and making shielding its more fragile but easier-to-restore counterpart. This ensures players always have a sort of "safety net" regardless of build; they can destroy armor they can't penetrate and shields are more or less the same (but not bypassed and made useless by specific damage types). I've given you varying degrees of specifics short of actual statistical values, and you've brushed over all of them without becoming any less confused (as far as I can tell). I really don't understand how you can call the above concepts a "fractal pattern of semantics," as they strike me as rather concrete and easy to understand. As I've asked before, what exactly do you want to know? Can you ask any specific questions regarding details which are unclear or confusing to you? "I don't get it" doesn't really help me when trying to answer your questions. What don't you understand? What do you understand? What qualifies as something concrete enough for your purposes? Based on the examples you've been using, I'm getting the distinct impression that you are - inadvertently - perpetrating a bit of a Nirvana fallacy where you're throwing the entirety of a concept out the window because it isn't meticulously perfect or comprehensive. For example, you have repeatedly brought up examples of things other games have done wrong (e.g., City of Heroes' labyrinth of resistances, Payday 2's overuse of Bulldozers, etc.) as evidence that specific design choices don't work while seemingly failing to realize that just because some other game makes a mistake that doesn't mean the mistake is a necessary consequence of a similar design decision. Warframe doesn't have to make the same mistakes, and should most certainly seek to learn from mistakes made by other games and take measures to avoid making those same mistakes. Yes, there are risks to consider when making changes. No, those risks are not impossible to compensate for. I'm well aware that my concepts are not comprehensive, and that there are certainly going to be problems with them I haven't considered yet. However, my plan is to address those problems when they crop up, not throw the system out as impossible or infeasible without first being confronted by a truly unsolvable problem.
  12. DiabolusUrsus

    Conclave Skins for Plat?

    As someone who actually ground my way up to Typhoon and has acquired a decent number of the skins, I support this. To hell with 'respecting my investment,' it was a horrible experience I wouldn't wish on anyone else. Players who like Conclave and are inclined to play it will play regardless of the skins being exclusive to the mode.
  13. It may be a self-imposed challenge, but it's not actually arduous in the same way doing the same thing in Warframe would be. Yes, you could be stronger and it could be easier, but in Warframe you can just flat-out not be strong enough and deal complete scratch damage while taking practically unavoidable attrition. My point about using a weapon with two hands (there are actually reasons to do this, btw,) was less about specific builds and more about your comment that FASERIP-type systems falling into the same category of obsolescence as critical hits. Based on the observed implementation, that simply isn't true. Anything the player ostensibly has direct control over left in their control. The stats come in for things like defining how strong your character is, which can't be expressed by simply pressing the button harder. You're continuingly overlooking the underlying approach, which is to minimize the meta. I don't care about making every player behave like the 'ideal player.' If players wantn to slave themselves to the meta, LET THEM. But make the meta provide a small enough advantage that anyone who doesn't can ignore it and still be effective. It's not about forcing an ideal; it's about supporting it as an option in the first place. Then if you really want to, add accuracy and projectile speed. Flamethrowers and explosives are entirely different animals, though. They should bring unique characteristics not available to other weapons to the table in exchange for reduced flexibility in other areas. I don't think that modding system is comparable. Obviously if weapon performance is mostly static players will gravitate to the "best pick," but Warframe gives players an entirely different set of tools to approach this problem. Don't look at the flaw in a vacuum and assume that it can't be fixed. You literally listed how the game addressed the problem; why can't Warframe do something to address it too? Right, it's more about letting players do what they WANT to than what they NEED to. Ugh, no. I already explicitly stated that I am not looking for Warframe to be hardcore or difficult. Take that assumption and discard it. And that's their choice, which they are free to make. Though for the record I'd expect to adjust procs for ROF, especially for stacking effects. Undermining the core design? How so? Also why would it need to be a challenge? If I want to make my Rubico into a shotgun-style pellet-sprayer with a higher magazine capacity, how does it harm the game to let me do that? ... But... That's pretty much exactly what I just said, though? True, it's not directly transferrable currently, but there are useful lessons to take away from it. Yes, I agree that mixed faction design can be done poorly. That doesn't mean it HAS to be, though. There is no semblance of thoughtful distribution or moderation applied to Terra Corpus; as you said, they're just "everything at once." That's not what I suggested, though. Great, I want to avoid things like Terra Corpus too. My approach is different, though, because "X build for Grineer, Y build for Corpus, Z build for Infested" really sucks when those builds aren't really that different. I agree that faction behavior and overall strengths/weaknesses should be important. For example, I'd want Grineer to emphasize aggressive pressure and cooperation between troops, whereas Corpus would consist of a handful of Crewmen attacking from range while throwing walls of disposable proxies in the player's general direction. Yes, Corrosive would be broadly useful against the Grineer the same way Magnetic would be useful against the Corpus, but there should be ways for the player to actively bridge those gaps if they so choose. Corrupted are a wasted opportunity that really deserve to get touched up with more thoughtful mixes of inter-faction units. They currrently just have the most annoying enemies available from each faction, but that's more a symptom of the factions all behaving mostly the same. With better faction diversity and *hopefully* more distinct "personalities," the Corrupted would be a great opportunity to force players to mix things up while constituting a rather "eerie and unsettling" battlefield presence.
  14. Interestingly enough, the system I mentioned has nothing to do with controlling player input, and covers only things that can't be properly accounted for through button presses without resorting to QTEs. For example, your character can still pick up and swing a weapon they aren't strong enough to use, though they will do pitiful damage with it and get thrown off-balance when landing/receiving hits. You can even effectively use heavier weapons by holding them with both hands instead of just one to increase your effective strength. Point being, I agree that holdovers from tabletop gaming like "critical chance" and other RNG-driven action emulations have no place in action games... But that doesn't make every aspect of the system automatically incompatible or inappropriate. I'm not recommending a Souls-style points-buy system for Warframe; I'm giving an example of a points-buy system that doesn't fall into a strict set of niche metas (outside of PVP, anyway) to show that isn't necessarily an inevitable consequence of simply using the system. Yes, there are various "package type" builds which work best together, but the game is balanced such that players can finish it without leveling up at all given enough input skill. In that sense, I feel it manages to avoid being a veneer of variety, because ANY build is more or less viable. Irrelevant. If DE is dead-set on taking the easy way out, this entire discussion is worthless because they can safely ignore everything we've said because clearly the game is not crashing and burning with what they're doing already. Assuming, however, that DE is willing to put in the effort to create something good and not simply good enough, what could they use in place of a points-buy system that would avoid the associated pitfalls? That's because the weapons themselves don't have any real customization. In Warframe, it's the weapons themselves that have the customization/progression investment instead if the character (e.g., Str build/Dex build/Int build in the form of Damage/Crit/Status.) Don't get too caught up in the specifics; nobody is suggesting a carbon copy of any counterparts. Warframe is not those games. It isn't said and done, finished and immutable. So instead of saying "XYZ failed to do it, therefore Warframe will also fail," let's say "XYZ failed to do it because of ABC; let's avoid those mistakes with Warframe." This only matters if the meta matters. If the meta offers only marginal advantages as I've discussed previously, and especially if the meta never offers universally-applicable advantages, Googling builds is a non-issue. If players want to Google ideas instead of tinkering with the game themselves, let them! Corrosive/Slash is only a problem because it circumvents every single defense in the game while offering no significant disadvantages in terms of DPS or other performance. It's fine to offer builds which do equally well against everything, but they should be overall weaker than specialized builds. It's doable simply by making crits and status non-random. If you can make any gun crit just by landing a shot in the right place, you can turn any gun into a crit gun just by making it accurate and aiming. If status is determined by guaranteed on-hit effects and accumulated procs based on status damage, you can turn any gun into a status gun by using a different proportion of damage. NOTE: Though I would still use a separate 'status modifier' based on pellet count and ROF to balance out shotguns and automatics. If status and crit are viable across factions through active playstyle differences as I have described, how would a player go about creating a "bad" build? If the build works (and it should), isn't that good enough? Following tht logic, we may as well just do that given what we have currently! Warframe players end up googling builds because a) the system is inadequately explained, and b) too many builds just plain suck. If weapons are VIABLE with no mods whatsoever and mods only serve to tailor weapons to specific playstyles, how do you envision only a handful of options? I didn't say that, nor would I. I'm not saying Warframe needs to be Dark Souls; I only brought it up again because you suggested stamina systems were impossible to do well at all. In other, simpler terms: It's a supply and demand issue. Dark Souls does a good job of balancing stamina availability and recovery against player need for it, whereas Warframe does a bad job of it with energy. I'm not conflating anything; you're overlooking that while yes, Warframe may use a very different implementation, perhaps it SHOULDN'T, for the very reasons you described. That doesn't mean Warframe needs to match Dark Souls' pacing, but perhaps we should consider why its mechanics work well together and why Warframe's don't. Dark Souls doesn't get away with stamina just because it regenerates quickly; it 'gets away with it' because it serves an explicit purpose: it punishes players for mindless input mashing, and rewards them for keeping their cool and moving deliberately even while under pressure. This creates a game environment where the solution to most challenges boils down to "pay attention and don't panic." That's exactly why stamina was a terrible idea for Warframe when it was attached to basic mashy things like melee, sprinting, and even JUMPING, but something similar for energy might not actually be a bad idea. PS: I lapse into using CAPS for emphasis because it gets hard to scroll up and bold/italicize on mobile, so please read it as such and not yelling. It's laziness on my part, not agitation.