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GruntBlender

Testing possible changes without compromising the public build

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The game badly needs large scale changes, like enemy level scaling. There exists a conclave mode that is entirely separate from the PvE game in terms of stats and mechanics. I propose adding another mode, accessed through Simaris, that would be a testbed for new mechanics that players could test and give feedback on without affecting the rest of the game. More importantly, thic could be a way for the developers to see how the players end up interacting with these potential mechanics.

This would be a separate mode, with its own version of whatever mods you want to test, whatever enemies and mechanics you want to test, no capacity limit on weapons to allow players to simulate whatever builds they'd be using if the features ascended into the game proper. You could rotate the mechanics out as often as you like, get a bunch of playtesting done for free to find balance or mechanical issues, etc. The players would get a lot of variety and a chance to weigh in on potential mechanics.

There would be an understanding that this is testing random ideas, or potential changes, not necessarily a preview of features that are about to be implemented. You could experiment with compressing enemy health and nerfing damage mods. Experiment with new stances or stance changes. Test out potential enemy mechanics. Try new things like VERY stealthy enemies or operator-only missions, or super-parkour tiles with the Golden Maw lurking beneath. Doesn't matter if they end up horribly unbalanced, it's only a test after all.

 

So, the setup:

  1. Player stops by Simaris, gets told Simaris wants to run some special tests with unusual circumstances.
  2. Player accepts and loads into a sort of waiting room (similar to sanctuary onslaught waiting area) with a special arsenal so they can deck out their gear with mods altered to this testing mode. This place also describes the test with a text accessed through a console/button.
  3. Player enters the portal, undergoes matchmaking if appropriate, and loads into the test area.
  4. Player completes the objective or fails, doesn't matter, and extracts back to the waiting area to try again with different gear or leave to go to the orbiter.

Don't even have to award affinity or resources based on the mission, a flat reward per mission comparable to a short Dark Sector mission run would be enough. Variety is its own reward for the players. Most importantly, the devs would gain a tool to rapidly evaluate potential changes through a real playerbase, significantly speeding up development of features and balancing changes.

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Agreed completely it'll mean much less backlash from large changes and new updates won't be as buggy, it's a win win for everyone.

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totally agree with this!

A public playtest usually will have more accurate results than a internal one...resulting in less bugs and better gameplay when the actual release hits

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Hmm.. a experimental mode within the game itself that is already plague with bugs and glitches. Nope I don't think that's a good idea. Having a hotfix or patch just because DE didn't like how things are going in the test room isn't a good thing to do. Prefer if there's a seperate public test server away from the live game.

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Not within the game itself, but having a Public Test Build that we can download separately and play to give proper feedback before an update actually drops, I can get behind that.

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1 hour ago, (PS4)jaggerwanderer said:

Hmm.. a experimental mode within the game itself that is already plague with bugs and glitches. Nope I don't think that's a good idea. Having a hotfix or patch just because DE didn't like how things are going in the test room isn't a good thing to do. Prefer if there's a seperate public test server away from the live game.

Aren't there already pretty much weekly hotfixes anyway? Or the patching can be done server side, or that part can be updated separately if you really can't stand a few megabytes of updates every few days.

Regarding bugs and glitches, i don't see conclave bleeding into the main game, it's effectively a separate game tied together with the same user interface.

 

8 minutes ago, TheRealShade said:

Not within the game itself, but having a Public Test Build that we can download separately and play to give proper feedback before an update actually drops, I can get behind that.

That would work too, though my idea is specifically not to preview upcoming updates but to test various possible changes, most of which will be discarded, with the rest effectively experiencing an evolutionary algorithm before being considered for the main game.

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A public test version of the game separate from the main game can be better,but 1 downside is people with lower end machines might not have disk space to install a 2nd warframe...making it a bit less accessible.

Maybe it is best to have a vote to see which is better

A built in testing ground in the main game for future updates

or

A separate version of the game used to test future updates

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The problem with public test realms is that majority of the players won't bother with them and a large portion of those who do only go there to experience new stuff instead of actually testing and giving feedback.

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Even Blizzard openly admits it's good to have PTR. Problems are still going to fall through regardless of testing. The more 'testers' there is, the better results. Even PTR isn't going to catch everything that's wrong nor deoes it encompass the views of the many.

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I like this concept.

Although I would be happy if we could just use the sim to load up ANY weapon or Frame and any and all mods (at max rank, regardless if you owned them or not) add potatoes and forma without resets all in order to test builds BEFORE you waste plat, potatoes and forma. Of course NONE of this would be saved once you exit the Sim. Nothing is worse than buying a mod or Riven and reformaing a weapon or frame to test a new build, finding out it's worse than before and then having to forma again to fix what you did.

It would also be great if they removed the stupid enemy level cap, or at least capped it a LOT higher.

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4 hours ago, No1NParticular31 said:

I like this concept.

Although I would be happy if we could just use the sim to load up ANY weapon or Frame and any and all mods (at max rank, regardless if you owned them or not) add potatoes and forma without resets all in order to test builds BEFORE you waste plat, potatoes and forma. Of course NONE of this would be saved once you exit the Sim. Nothing is worse than buying a mod or Riven and reformaing a weapon or frame to test a new build, finding out it's worse than before and then having to forma again to fix what you did.

It would also be great if they removed the stupid enemy level cap, or at least capped it a LOT higher.

That's just the Simulacrum, but without capacity cap. And I do support removing the capacity limit in the Simulacrum, it's meant for testing after all.

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3 hours ago, GruntBlender said:

That's just the Simulacrum, but without capacity cap. And I do support removing the capacity limit in the Simulacrum, it's meant for testing after all.

Well it's more than that. Currently we can only test weapons and frames we already have, with mods we already have. We cannot modify mod rank while in the current Sim. I haven't tried to do a Forma in the Sim but it says it is going to reset it. I also did add a potato once in the SIm and it was still in the weapon when I left. Luckily I was OK with that, but to me the purpose of the Sim is to, well, be a simulation that in NO WAY affects the real world.

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12 hours ago, No1NParticular31 said:

Well it's more than that. Currently we can only test weapons and frames we already have, with mods we already have. We cannot modify mod rank while in the current Sim. I haven't tried to do a Forma in the Sim but it says it is going to reset it. I also did add a potato once in the SIm and it was still in the weapon when I left. Luckily I was OK with that, but to me the purpose of the Sim is to, well, be a simulation that in NO WAY affects the real world.

I agree, the simulacrum needs work, especially with that last change they made to it. My point was that all those things are what should be added to the simulacrum that always uses the same mechanics as the missions do. My test mode proposal would use various experimental mechanics so testing builds in it to use in the rest of the game would give inaccurate results at best.

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