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Make the game CO-OP again...


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4 minutes ago, Steel_Rook said:

Hello :) I agree with the broad-strokes points here. If you want to make the game more co-op centric, it's more than sufficient to just ALLOW players to cooperate. There's no need to MANDATE it. All the latter accomplishes is to introduce additional failure states. With that said, I'm not sure that Warframe-specific synergies are the best way to get us to more team play, if for no reason other than such synergies would become too kit-dependent. Ideally, we want to avoid "We need a healer!"

This is why I proposed fostering teamplay with objectives, instead. Warframe already barely gives us any reason to stick together like a L4D team, so why not let players split up across the map and cover more ground? Get rid of Affinity Range, implement pick-up sharing and you're already half-way there. This way, one player can work on the objective while the others scour the map for pick-ups and collectables. Railjack already does this. Two players stay with the Railjack and fight, the other two fan out and clear the Points of Interest, then proceed to go "mining" debris fields. Shared pick-ups and infinite sharing range are a wondrous thing in that game mode.

ALLOW players to cooperate and they will - more often than not. FORCE players to cooperate and they'll mostly just trash-talk or blame each other.

Welcome back! It is good to see you on here again. :)

I can agree with the risk; we should never find ourselves in a situation where a mission needs a buffer frame, or a CC frame, or anything like that just to work properly. Most of my time in Warframe is spent playing Trinity, and I've had the most fun playing her when she isn't essential to her team, because it means I don't get pestered by players for healing or Energy, and can relax without getting blamed if someone dies or runs low. I still get the benefit of saving allies and objectives from death with a button press, and making other players happy as a result, though, so even though my frame isn't needed, I still get to feel valued and useful to my team. This is why I think self-sufficiency is an important principle to stand by, because I think it allows for the benefits of positive interaction without the negatives of mandating said interaction: Wisp certainly makes a tangible contribution to her team, for example, but doesn't feel necessary for a team to function either, and so far I thankfully haven't seen any player act entitled to her motes even if the player didn't cast them, or deployed them in some awkward spot. That ought to be the standard to set for our interactions through our kits.

As for objectives, that's a discussion topic I didn't want to touch upon in too much detail without going into a whole other tangent, but I very much agree that our missions could do more to encourage (but not mandate) cooperation. I think that our mission structure in general is really archaic and ought to be updated, and even wrote a thread about it, though in this specific context I think parallel objectives would be a great way of allowing players to help one another. We already have a bit of this with caches in certain missions, and outside of the failure conditions, Spy missions can feel awesome when everyone succeeds and hacks the vaults independently of one another. Ideally, there should also be moments of interaction where players get to be around one another, and I wouldn't take Railjack as a model due to how it makes cooperation mandatory (missions feel really tedious when playing solo or with an uncoordinated team), but if nothing else, missions with several different objectives to complete in parallel would already allow players to help one another more.

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8 hours ago, Steel_Rook said:

The simple fact of the matter is that the sort of gameplay they tried to sell during TennoCon 2019 might work for Guns of Icarus, but it does not fit Warframe's existing playerbase. Very, very soon after release, the flaws of that design came to the forefront. Everyone wanted to fly the ship and shoot the guns, next to nobody wanted to play minigames while staring at the interior walls so that the pilot could actually play the game. There were some (myself among them, I played Engineer more than anything else), but most people would just jump out in their Archwings the moment they found the Helm occupied. They still do.

I usually agree with you, but I think this is overly pessimistic. While I do think that the enforced teamplay thing got the lone wolves' ire, I think that's more of an issue with DE not starting with the Command intrinsics. 

There IS room for team-oriented play in Warframe. People will pick up various roles in Eidolon hunts and they're desperate for raids to return. 

And from my personal experience? There was plenty of teamplay when Railjack launched. The reason everyone Archwinged it out was because launch Railjack had the durability of a soaked paper towel, and the gunplay was too slow and awkward for the high-speed fighters, which is why Amesha became the number 1 Railjack solution.

I think it could have worked, and I also think it still can work. Even if it doesn't fully, it may be the one time where being a content island can be a benefit.

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7 hours ago, Colyeses said:

I usually agree with you, but I think this is overly pessimistic. While I do think that the enforced teamplay thing got the lone wolves' ire, I think that's more of an issue with DE not starting with the Command intrinsics. There IS room for team-oriented play in Warframe. People will pick up various roles in Eidolon hunts and they're desperate for raids to return. 

Well, it's more that I may have exaggerated somewhat. There's certainly room for team play in Warframe and Railjack, no doubt. The problem is that trying to enforce that team play by locking away solo and small team options isn't a great way to foster it. At one point, I had a fairly stable group of friends playing the game with me - 5-6 people all told. I basically couldn't talk any of them to play Railjack with me for any length of time because they simply found it boring. One outright ragequit because he disagreed with consigning one person to running around the ship plugging holes with their fingers. Wouldn't play Railjack content at all.

My argument was that I think team-play in Railjack works best when it extends outside the walls of the ship. Even right now as we speak, having multiple players on a mission helps tremendously for reasons other than enforced team play. We usually have one person piloting the ship and another assisting - fighting boarders, plugging holes, boarding Crew Ships. If we have other people, they typically peel off and attack the various Points of Interest, if any. When they're done with that, they either come back and pitch into the battle or else run around the map collecting resources. Railjack has a LOT of potentially useful tasks to do, and a single player can only do so many of them at a time. Having more players makes missions go a lot faster and smoother because tasks can be done concurrently, rather than in sequence.

As Railjack moves forward, I want to see more of that. I want to see more points of interest, more and more varied boardable ships, more ways for people in Archwings to contribute and generally more concurrent objectives. Warframe's problem right now is that most missions give only enough objectives for a single player to tackle, with the rest of the team sort of... Just tagging along, shooting stuff and twiddling their thumbs. As long as people have optional co-op objectives to engage in, you don't need to actually force them into that. Natural gameplay flow will breed cooperative play.

 

15 hours ago, Teridax68 said:

As for objectives, that's a discussion topic I didn't want to touch upon in too much detail without going into a whole other tangent, but I very much agree that our missions could do more to encourage (but not mandate) cooperation. I think that our mission structure in general is really archaic and ought to be updated, and even wrote a thread about it, though in this specific context I think parallel objectives would be a great way of allowing players to help one another. We already have a bit of this with caches in certain missions, and outside of the failure conditions, Spy missions can feel awesome when everyone succeeds and hacks the vaults independently of one another. Ideally, there should also be moments of interaction where players get to be around one another, and I wouldn't take Railjack as a model due to how it makes cooperation mandatory (missions feel really tedious when playing solo or with an uncoordinated team), but if nothing else, missions with several different objectives to complete in parallel would already allow players to help one another more.

Fair enough - it IS a far broader discussion. I do, however, agree that a majority of Warframe's missions have staggeringly outdated, archaic designs. Even something as relatively basic as Vermintide (which is what I've been doing lately) still gives you meaningful collectables and some in-mission inventory management, along with the occasional interactive element... And that's basically Warhammer Fantasy L4D. Warframe's mission design is so simplistic that it stifles cooperative play, in my opinion. As I said above - when there's nothing for players to actually do besides roam around and kill stuff while waiting for mission completion, no team play can occur. You can tie people to each other and force them to "synergise," but all this does is introduce a minigame to a fundamentally non-cooperative experience.

The absolute LEAST DE could do is add Hidden Caches to all missions, not just Sabotage. The slightly "less least" thing they could do is open some currently linear missions to concurrent play. Maybe let players obtain additional Datamasses and do multiple Mobile Defence objectives at once? Maybe spread the various Sabotage mission objectives around the map rather than having 90% dead space + reactor. And sure, this sort of design could make solo and small-team content feel tedious in comparison if it feels like simultaneous objectives are everywhere. As someone who played most of Railjack (since Revised) solo, though, I can honestly handle a lot of that without complaining. That's the thing with simultaneous objectives - they feel natural to do as a team, and they often end up feeling natural to do alone. Up to a point.

Really, the big thing I'd change on Railjack is the Radiator side missions. I'd either drop them entirely or just allow my Omnitool to teleport me back into the Point of Interest, to where I left. That's the majority of the aggressive busywork, in my opinion. For everything else? I have fallbacks. Can't board Crew Ships, but I can blow out their engines and take them out of the fight that way. Mop up after the Fighters are gone. I'm fine with some amount of clunkiness when running content understaffed, as long as I'm not literally locked out of it.

 

15 hours ago, Teridax68 said:

Welcome back! It is good to see you on here again. :)

Thanks :) I had a pretty hard rage-quit after The Heart of Deimos and the... Everything that shipped with. Glad to see a lot has improved there in my absence. Would have ideally held off on Warframe until the Railjack changes because that's honestly by far my favourite part of Warframe, but... Well, Tenora Prime released, and I just had to.

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