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(XB1)Kebiru25

[Warframe Concept] From PSO to WF pt 1: Grineer Unicycle

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Phantasy Star Online (2000) was the first console "online looter shooter" rpg and my first intro to the Phantasy Star world. All the hallmarks of the current iteration of looter shooters has it roots here from lobbies, limited 4 man squads and procedurally generated tiles. For me it still holds the top position. So much so that I followed the releases for 4 of the 5 consoles for its 8 years. When Warframe released on Xbox, I quickly saw the similarities. Instant love. My thoughts were confirmed when both [DE]Steve and [DE]Rebecca compared WF to PSO in an interview with Youtuber Mogamu. Though I love all the similarities, WF (and many others) misses a few intricacies that made PSO perfect.

The best way to clarify is to recount two memories in PSO. I was power leveling a friend in the mines. I took point while she peppered the enemies with magic. We entered one tileset pitched in black with the light switch across the room (a common encounter). Half way in the room, I hear the pitch and wine of gears. “Get the eff out if the room!” is the first thing out if mouth followed by a missiles swarm. She gets out and after a few hits, I turn the lights on revealing a Garanz robot. The second memory is in the Seabed tileset while power leveling my wife (girlfriend at the time). The floor had a puddle of water which meant the invisible Dolmolm was in the room. As I was explaining the mechanics to her, the reflection in the water showed the Dolmolm behind her. She fell in the first hit.

PSO was a 2000 game but it understood that tilesets, as well as the enemies, could be challenging. Robot ninjas dropped from the ceiling, explosive traps popped up from the floor. Most looters think that mob numbers and increased levels equal challenge. But I haven’t seen an IP integrate their backgrounds outside of boss fights. Sadly we need challenging enemies before introducing better tilesets. I’m going to start a series creating enemy types that slow the "run-n-gun" nature of Warframe.

pso_to_wf_part_1__garanz_to_unicycle_by_

Grineer unicycle (I suck at naming)

The Grineer turret are one of the few enemy types that can stop a Tenno in its tracks… if you’re not paying attention. But they are also easily defeated by standing next to it, triggering the dismount animation. Which is stupid. Why should he get out? So what if the Gunner never got out, was mobile and sprayed rockets?

The unicycle is designed to be used on all tilesets and small enough to fit through doors. Its 3 barrel minigun, missile pod and feet retracts while in Cycle form, they detracts in Walker form. Unlike the stationary turret, the cycle AI reacts differently when the Tenno are in a close proximity to each other. When two or more Tenno are within 7m, the missile pod fires a swarm (6) causing Blast AoE of 5m. The minigun is used when Tenno are spread far apart. Groups are a priority and will be targeted first. The Grineer unicycle is invincible from the front, like its turret counterpart, but the Grineer pilot will never dismount. To defeat him, Tenno must aim for the small weak point in the back.

Integrating with tilesets.

A tile shouldn’t just be part of a race course. A Tenno should walk into some rooms and instantly be on guide. Warframe is not Phantasy Star Online, so putting a puddle in the middle of the room means nothing. But by placing the unicycle in key rooms (much like the current turrets) the effect can be achieved. In the PoE, the unicycles would roam around in a pack of 3. Lastly, the unicycle should be able to climb stairs in cycle form, but it can only deploy on flat surfaces.

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58 minutes ago, (XB1)Kebiru25 said:

PSO was a 2000 game but it understood that tilesets, as well as the enemies, could be challenging. Robot ninjas dropped from the ceiling, explosive traps popped up from the floor.

Have you played in Kuva Fortress or Gas City? Both have what you are describing. You hit the trigger and hazards activate in the tiles. But this is totally meaningless to many people. The damage these can do is negligible because we move through the rooms so quickly.

58 minutes ago, (XB1)Kebiru25 said:

they detracts in Walker form

Detracts means something else. I believe you are looking for “extends”.

 

Overall, your idea seems good. I do wonder how effective it will actually be though. You seem to be assuming it will achieve the goal you want, but much like the turrets and area traps I don’t see it working. As a “I have a fun addition” it sounds perfectly valid. 

What happens when two people are standing next to it, but another two are spread across the room? Does one behaviour take priority? Something about firing swarms of rockets at your own feet seems like a questionable idea, something about ‘self-preservation’.

  • My most important question: when we kill the pilot, can we steal the Unicycle.

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Looks good and probably fun to fight against. But you should either allow the player to somehow open the hatch and steal the vehicle or adapt the cockpit to more like a dreadnought (from 40K).

The Dreadnought cockpit works well because we have a few examples of the grineer “fusing” a clone with the machine he controls. The best examples are: vayhek chicken mech; the sea lab cloning facility machines.

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22 hours ago, krc473 said:

Have you played in Kuva Fortress or Gas City? Both have what you are describing. You hit the trigger and hazards activate in the tiles. But this is totally meaningless to many people. The damage these can do is negligible because we move through the rooms so quickly.

The Kuva Fortress and the Gas City are recent additions. Though they are traps, like you said their meaningless since they are easy to see and only damage you. Phantasy Star traps were more like mines. They popped up, giving you a small window to shot it before it stun locked you. Once one was in the room, knew there were 2-3 more.

And yes, the missiles take priority no matter what distance. Mostly because DE hasn't applied self damage to the Grineer Bombard.

I don't know... When I first came up with the idea, I thought of a Warhammer 40k Dreadnought. Then I would think it would need a self-destruct animation, because it could possible block, halting the mission. It would be fun, but DE might have to change a few stats once Tenno get in.

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15 hours ago, keikogi said:

The Dreadnought cockpit works well because we have a few examples of the grineer “fusing” a clone with the machine he controls. The best examples are: vayhek chicken mech; the sea lab cloning facility machines.

I was original thinking of a Dreadnought inspired powersuit, but I wanted it to be more mobile. I would add a self-destruct animation just to prevent it from blocking doors.

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38 minutes ago, (XB1)Kebiru25 said:

The Kuva Fortress and the Gas City are recent additions. Though they are traps, like you said their meaningless since they are easy to see and only damage you. Phantasy Star traps were more like mines. They popped up, giving you a small window to shot it before it stun locked you. Once one was in the room, knew there were 2-3 more.

But what is the issue here? Is it the traps or our speed? No matter how powerful a trap is, if we can just run past it the trap is irrelevant. 

  • I have never played Phantasy Star, so I don’t know about mobility there.

Unless you force a lockdown when you encounter the Unicycle, how will it be any different? 

  • I am ignoring us being able to steal them. Because that would be a little incentive to kill the pilot.

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16 hours ago, (XB1)Kebiru25 said:

The Kuva Fortress and the Gas City are recent additions. Though they are traps, like you said their meaningless since they are easy to see and only damage you. Phantasy Star traps were more like mines. They popped up, giving you a small window to shot it before it stun locked you. Once one was in the room, knew there were 2-3 more.

one thing i think you forget is that most of the traps in the gas city and kuva fortress can be destroyed (somewhat).

Gas City door scanners can be shot at and destroyed, meaning that even if rushing, you can destroy them. Gas City shock turrets, they can be shot at and destroyed when active (sadly those EVIL poison vents cant, but oh well). and the Kuva Fortress scanners can be somewhat negated by timing and using tenno form cloaking, and the turrets can actually push you away (if you get hit by the initial burst), meaning they don't just damage you.

and there are traps that can hinder movement and prevent you from running away (think the camera's on literally any corpus ship that activate the laser walls, the grineer laser walls which drain energy and prevent movement abilities as well as hinder your vision), as well as the Bursa in the Index (cant remember their name) which can activate traps that force you into a fight with it or another enemy, as well as other movement hindering traps.

 

while in all i like your idea, i don't like the idea of slowing warframe down, warframe literally advertises itself as a game about 'Space Ninjas'. and last i checked, Ninja's are pretty flipping fast. Warframe's weapons are so over-the-top devastating to keep a run-and-gun playstyle while also allowing the player to be on watch for basic traps (camera's, scanners, turrets, etc) in their mad dash through the area's without always having to watch the mayhem that follows behind. this is why some of the traps (especially the Gas City ones) are quite annoying, leaving status affects on you. another thing i'd say is to maybe shrink it a bit, some grineer tilesets have narrow hallways that it could end up in, making it completely invincible to the player who has to try and lure it out (which is very hard with warframes ai), meaning it could block the player off without a way to move it out the way. I'm basing their size based on your illustration rather than what you said and the fact that most grineer are 1 warframe tall, making the suit around 2 warframes tall, 2 warframes wide and maybe 1.5-2 warframes long, and also the fact that there are very few grineer who would actually be small enough to pilot that if it could fit through a doorway, with only Kuva Jesters coming to mind, and also because the grineer (despite their damaged DNA), only ever get messed up faces, rather than size changes, and all fully living enemies (excluding the infested) are all based on human adult sizes. plus if you compare the minigun to a rampart minigun, you can get an accurate scale in that they would get stuck in grineer meteorite vents, and some small hallways based on their size when compared to regular grineer and ingame reference material. (assuming that the size is kept from rampart to this new enemy type)

 

like krc473, i have not played PSO, but i feel like Warframe has taken a distinctive step away from it, branching into a hectic and fast-paced run-and-gun playstyle compared to what you described about PSO (i'm personally basing what i know about PSO's playstyle on my favourite indie game Heart & Slash), and personally... i think warframe is better suited to run-and-gun rather jumping between slow and methodical fighting into hectic running every 2nd tile. this is why few enemies actually slow the fighting down. Nox's, Tusk Thumpers and Juggernauts (sorta) come to mind immediately, as well as some bosses like Krill and Sargas Ruk, and the Orb's and Eidolon's which were made to be slow so they make sense.

 

all in all... if this enemy were to be slightly adapted to warframes quicker and more hectic playstyle (maybe make the front take 1% damage or make it so that enough blast damage on the front forces the pilot to self destruct), it would be better IN MY OPINION! that or make it unique to open worlds as its big design and shape doesn't really fit the small rooms of some of warframes tilesets (namely vents), as well the fast that this giant green monster being in the blue and scenic ocean labs which already have unique enemy types. make it a standard size compared to the pilot and the rampart its based on and put it in the PoE or a new grineer open world and it could fit right in as a mini field boss (with some extra health and annoying capabilities like homing rockets)

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39 minutes ago, (XB1)Kawaii Asa said:

and also the fact that there are very few grineer who would actually be small enough to pilot that

There is nothing stopping Grineer to put a quad amputee into a combat suit (except of DE not wanting to make a new model, obviously).

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23 hours ago, krc473 said:

But what is the issue here? Is it the traps or our speed? No matter how powerful a trap is, if we can just run past it the trap is irrelevant. 

  • I have never played Phantasy Star, so I don’t know about mobility there.

Unless you force a lockdown when you encounter the Unicycle, how will it be any different? 

  • I am ignoring us being able to steal them. Because that would be a little incentive to kill the pilot.

Phantasy Start Online was (or is on fan servers) a slower paced game similar to Remnant from the Ashes. It might have been like WF before the parkour 2.0, but I've never played that far back and PSO has no jumping. They had the procedurally generated tiles and future/fantasy theme. On side missions you would often be paired with a NPC or find them in mission. Something I wish WF would look into. Because the pacing is so different, I couldn't move enemy and trap types over. Changes need to though over to match WF.

Let me answer that with a different frame of thought. In a growing demand for stronger enemies, DE has been adding more and more enemy types. The Juggernaut, Bursas and Nox are good attempts, but just like the Stalker if you're running a party of 4, there's nothing to worry about. I think that is a problem and from all the escalating enemy power types, I notice that DE's approach is the same approach seen in Dragon Ball Z ie make a stronger enemy. The Wolf of Saturn Six is a perfect example of this. He was unbelievable strong but that's it.

Assassins are a great random factor in a game were you mindlessly kill mods. It throws you off your game yet in fun the bet. It was fun/scary trying to kill the Stalker in your first few months of WF. Now he's easy. Traps and Speed are not the issue. I want that random factor, a "banana peel" to throw player off their game. A great example is Sensor Bar above Grineer doors and Blast walls that pop up in Orokin tilesets. When you run through the sensor without shooting it, it drains your energy. When you're running at full speed and blast wall pops up, it stops your flow. These 2 are good templates and something I'm going to look into later.

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The Unicycle (and future ideas) are more like mini bosses rather than assassins. They will exhibit the characteristics though. Meaning when you run into them, they'll chase you until you kill them. But being mini bosses, I want them to have weak point mechanics like bosses (Councilor Vay Hek and Lieutenant Lech Kril). 

P.S. I forgot to mention, I know that triggering a stun trap won't stun the one running past it, but it could trap the others trying to keep up...triggering them.

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7 hours ago, (XB1)Kawaii Asa said:

all in all... if this enemy were to be slightly adapted to warframes quicker and more hectic playstyle (maybe make the front take 1% damage or make it so that enough blast damage on the front forces the pilot to self destruct), it would be better IN MY OPINION! that or make it unique to open worlds as its big design and shape doesn't really fit the small rooms of some of warframes tilesets (namely vents), as well the fast that this giant green monster being in the blue and scenic ocean labs which already have unique enemy types. make it a standard size compared to the pilot and the rampart its based on and put it in the PoE or a new grineer open world and it could fit right in as a mini field boss (with some extra health and annoying capabilities like homing rockets)

I like the idea of 1% damage. But I don't see my design as big. A human sitting on a motorcycle isn't bigger than another human and that's the idea. Also I saw the shape of the door and thought "why a circle?" The cycle is my answer. 

Read my response to krc473 to answer everything else about traps, enemy types, bosses, banana peels and PSO (more like Remnant from the Ashes btw)

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1 hour ago, (XB1)Kebiru25 said:

The Unicycle (and future ideas) are more like mini bosses rather than assassins. They will exhibit the characteristics though. Meaning when you run into them, they'll chase you until you kill them. But being mini bosses, I want them to have weak point mechanics like bosses (Councilor Vay Hek and Lieutenant Lech Kril). 

The problem I see: the bosses you use for examples seem to be generally disliked. They have invincibility stages. People don’t seem to like that very much. Don’t base your assassin on a concept people don’t like.

1 hour ago, (XB1)Kebiru25 said:

The Wolf of Saturn Six is a perfect example of this. He was unbelievable strong but that's it.

Here comes the power issue again. People were complaining that Wolf was too strong and I could never understand it. He died about as fast as Stalker/random Lancer for me. He was not remotely difficult. 

 

You don’t want to make an enemy that potentially halts mission progress and is impossible to kill for newer players. That is just unfair. I am not 100% if you are suggesting this or not.

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11 hours ago, krc473 said:

The problem I see: the bosses you use for examples seem to be generally disliked. They have invincibility stages. People don’t seem to like that very much. Don’t base your assassin on a concept people don’t like.

Here comes the power issue again. People were complaining that Wolf was too strong and I could never understand it. He died about as fast as Stalker/random Lancer for me. He was not remotely difficult. 

 

You don’t want to make an enemy that potentially halts mission progress and is impossible to kill for newer players. That is just unfair. I am not 100% if you are suggesting this or not.

The concept indeed has quite a few problems in its current interaction as you pointed out but as long the OP as willing to change it a bit it is quite easy to fix.  

Taking a page from both the exploiter orb fifth and the thumpers we can fix just about everything.

From the Thumper

Give him a melee charging attack (important for later)

Give venerable knee (if the knees are destroyed Unicycle becomes slower (turn rate reduced drastically) and it will be stunned after every charge attack)

Destructible weapons (shooting the weapon connection point can disable both the machine gun and the missile launcher)

From the Exploiter

Being able to interact with the Unicycle if he took enough damage.

If both the knee and at least one weapon is disabled the Warframe can press E , to do a especial attack on it. This attack does the fallowing: tenno jumps on the disable gun and uses his hacking dagger to take control of the weapon firing at all enemies nearby, after 3 seconds firing the tenno will pull of this weapon and jump at the back of the Unicycle. The Unicycle is not destroyed by this attack but will be stuned for 5 seconds.

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9 hours ago, keikogi said:

he problem I see: the bosses you use for examples seem to be generally disliked. They have invincibility stages. People don’t seem to like that very much. Don’t base your assassin on a concept people don’t like.

Please don't take my examples so literally when I try to compare the Unicycle. Both Councilor Vay Hek and Lieutenant Lech Kril are bad bosses because they cycle from invincible to weak point. Wolf sucks because increased power can be made easy once you use the right meta (just like Stalker). The goal is to look to other games for a new approach, rather than coping WF continued approach of power (and now invincibility) over all. As I first described and showed above, the idea evolved into making the Grineer turret a mobile enemy. Slap wheels on it, shrink the vulnerable rear by 50% and add missiles.

I'm not saying make it impossible to kill. It's not like the Thumper where you have to shoot the knees off or the Exploiter where you have to cycle through status to cause damage. Just jump behind it and shoot in the small window.

 

Now that I think about it, Vay Hek wasn't that bad. His weak point was clearly communicated and his final mecha form had no invulnerable spots. Permanent invincibility sucks.

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9 minutes ago, (XB1)Kebiru25 said:

Please don't take my examples so literally when I try to compare the Unicycle. Both Councilor Vay Hek and Lieutenant Lech Kril are bad bosses because they cycle from invincible to weak point. Wolf sucks because increased power can be made easy once you use the right meta (just like Stalker). The goal is to look to other games for a new approach, rather than coping WF continued approach of power (and now invincibility) over all. As I first described and showed above, the idea evolved into making the Grineer turret a mobile enemy. Slap wheels on it, shrink the vulnerable rear by 50% and add missiles.

Don't quote a quote it is confusing.

9 minutes ago, (XB1)Kebiru25 said:

I'm not saying make it impossible to kill. It's not like the Thumper where you have to shoot the knees off or the Exploiter where you have to cycle through status to cause damage. Just jump behind it and shoot in the small window.

 

Now that I think about it, Vay Hek wasn't that bad. His weak point was clearly communicated and his final mecha form had no invulnerable spots. Permanent invincibility sucks.

I never removed the option to just get behind it and shoot. I jist gave the player ways to interact with the enemy from his front. Garanting the player can deal with this enemy from the front bit making sure doing this is the hard way. Just have a look at this part.

10 hours ago, keikogi said:

If both the knee and at least one weapon is disabled the Warframe can press E , to do a especial attack on it. This attack does the fallowing: tenno jumps on the disable gun and uses his hacking dagger to take control of the weapon firing at all enemies nearby, after 3 seconds firing the tenno will pull of this weapon and jump at the back of the Unicycle. The Unicycle is not destroyed by this attack but will be stuned for 5 seconds.

The finishir attack does not kill the enemy and to perform it the player had to go drought 3 steps. If the player can just get behind him and shoot , he will do that. If he can't(either due to map layout , can't abandon an objective or just to squish to manover in the midle of the enemy groups ) he will fallow thought with that process.

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Before we go back and forth on something I think you're missing the point with, i have to ask you a question. What do you think of the Grineer turrent? Easy, hard, pointless, meh?

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On 2019-09-06 at 10:37 PM, keikogi said:

The finishir attack does not kill the enemy and to perform it the player had to go drought 3 steps. If the player can just get behind him and shoot , he will do that. If he can't(either due to map layout , can't abandon an objective or just to squish to manover in the midle of the enemy groups ) he will fallow thought with that process.

It's the same steps you have to go through when fighting a turret. Because the unicycle is a new unit, I expect a player to jump behind him and shoot. If there is a problem due to map layout, the player can back away to force the unicycle to follow. The AI should chase, not stand still... like a turret. If you defeat it in a door, it explodes and vanishes.

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Have you noticed that the grineer never place ramparts at the best place they could?
They never use ramparts in to defend long corridors, neither they have grineer soldiers manning them as soon as the alarm sounds. Your unicycle can place himself into effective corridors like the one below.

arman-abounourinejad-w1.jpg?1438405509
 

8 hours ago, (XB1)Kebiru25 said:

It's the same steps you have to go through when fighting a turret. Because the unicycle is a new unit, I expect a player to jump behind him and shoot. If there is a problem due to map layout, the player can back away to force the unicycle to follow. The AI should chase, not stand still... like a turret. If you defeat it in a door, it explodes and vanishes.

Yes the player can back down, but this is a game based around feeling powerful being forced to retreat by a non-boss enemy feels bad. That’s why I would rather create an overcovoluted method of frontal assault them suggesting retreat.

Also, I was going to suggest the overconvoluted method as the only way to defeat an elite variant of this enemy. The Unicycle is quite strong against squish frames without mobility, but after the war within you can just Void dash Behind him.

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47 minutes ago, keikogi said:

Yes the player can back down, but this is a game based around feeling powerful being forced to retreat by a non-boss enemy feels bad. That’s why I would rather create an overcovoluted method of frontal assault them suggesting retreat.

Knowing the player base, I don't think the majority would back down, just change strategy. It's like the turret. When you first see it you realize that a frontal attack isn't going to work. I want more moments like that. And the Juggernaut is an example of a non-boss that early players run from. 

Although, I do like the idea of putting them on corridor tiles. I was thinking open areas like the current turrets, but this is better. I could see Volt mains popping shields the moment they see it.

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