Understanding kill:death ratios

internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
edited March 2012 in NS2 General Discussion
Instead of crying when people mention them
I see people arguing about kill-death ratios (KDRs) in a few different threads, and I want to clear up some misconceptions. I'm going to paraphrase a post I made here.

What the heck is a KDR?
Simply put, a KDR is the ratio of someone's kills to their deaths. Look at the scoreboard - Bob has 5 kills and 4 deaths. He has a 5:4 ratio, or a mean 1.25 kills per death. Sue has 3 kills and 17 deaths - she has a 0.18 KDR.

What games have KDRs?
Any game that has kills and deaths, or more generally any game that has losses and gains. In FPS games, KDR is a standard measure.
In RTS games like Starcraft II, you might look at something like 'cost of units lost'

What should the KDR mean to me?
You should treat the KDR as a measure of how effective a player is being. Consider a pure deathmatch game, where the goal is to get more kills than the opponent in 5 minutes. If your KDR is greater than 1 (more kills than deaths) you are winning. If it is less than or equal to 1, you are not winning.

Of course, we're posting on the NS2 forums and NS2 is not that simple hypothetical game. It's a strategy game with resources and power nodes and all sorts of stuff! So the KDR doesn't matter, right? Wrong!

How does KDR analysis apply to Natural Selection 2?
To understand this, you have to take on a large-scale view of this game.

First, what do players do?
  • Fight things
  • Build things
  • Move around the map
  • Sense things
  • Relay information to teammates
  • Purchase things with resources
  • Die


All of these are important to being effective in this game. If all you do is fight things, but you never relay information or move to key areas of the map, you aren't being as effective as you could be. If all you do is die, you're not doing much. You can die "for" something - to find out that a hive is building, or to bite down an observatory. Those can be considered 'effective' deaths, but the KDR has nothing to do with those. Or does it? If you bite down an observatory and then die, the player who killed you prevented further damage - the KDR increase he felt was matched by yours decreasing, and it is tied to him helping his team in the large scale.

KDR applies to everything players do (including commanders).

Let's explain why!

  • Fighting things - If you kill enemies and they don't kill you, they are dead and you are alive. They are in the spawn queue. Their IPs/eggs are occupied.
  • Building things - when an area is rid of enemy presence, you can safely build in it. The same is true for your opponents who want to kill you and build on your corpse.
  • Moving around the map - living players can move around the map and dead players cannot. When people die in combat, the ratio of "team A movement : team B movement" changes a bit more
  • Sensing things - Living players can see and hear things, but dead players cannot. This ties in with moving around the map. The team that is getting more kills is getting a clearer picture of the game state, by moving around the map and scouting it.
  • Relay information to teammates - this ties into the last two ideas as well. When you kill enemy players, you limit their usefulness to their teammates who could be miles away, simply because they cannot coordinate or share information (the dead players cannot see what is happening where they died)
  • Purchasing things - when you kill someone who bought a lifeform/upgrade/armor, they need to spend more money to buy it again (because they respawn as a skulk or rifle marine). You damage the enemy team more if you kill 'key' targets who are worth more resources
  • Dying - when you die, you lessen the amount of information, map control and flexibility your team has available for a period of time


So, that's how each of the factors works in the small scale. What about in the large?
  • When lots of players die in the field, their commander has very little information available until they respawn and return to their positions.
  • When players repeatedly die with bought guns/armor/lifeforms, their available PRes (personal resources) decreases faster than it grows. If the trend of ineffectiveness continues, the dying players are reduced to a state where they cannot buy guns/lifeforms.
  • When lots of players die on a team, that team loses the ability to react to new information safely. For instance, if 5 of your marines die at 'the main front', and one guy finds a new hive building at the same time, you're down 5 players that could be running to that hive. The aliens get more time to build up defenses.


B-b-but NS2 has mechanics to circumvent this!
Yes. When you need all your players to spawn in a hurry, you use a beacon. When you want your players to be more effective in combat, you use medpacks/nanoshields/umbra/cloak. Guess what, though? Every time you use one of those things you're spending a resource. This brings us to the most important reason for pursuing kills in this game: forcing the enemy team to spend resources. If they spend resources and defeat you in combat with minimal losses, you may have made a mistake. If they spend resources and you defeat them in combat, you have made extra gains (beyond the scoreboard, map control etc). Either way, they spent something. If you were being complacent and standing beside a building with nothing attacking you, the enemy team wasn't spending anything on you.


What is a good/bad KDR? What analysis can I do with this?
Here are some ideas about it that you can apply to your gameplay:

  • KDR > 1 means you're killing more than you're being killed. This is good.
  • KDR <= 1 means you're killing as much as or less than you are being killed. You may not be performing effectively in combat. You may be helping in other ways (welding, building, healing) but your player is not deeply affecting the core of the game.
  • If you are playing a role that de-emphasizes combat (builder gorge, welder/guard marine, phase gate ninja etc) KDR still tells us how effective you are. If you are dying over and over, you are not free to weld/build anywhere you need to. You don't need to get kills to be an effective welder, but you do need to be alive. When you're not in combat, you want your KDR to remain stable.
  • If you are playing a combat-heavy role, your KDR is very important, but it does not tell the whole story. If you kill every alien on the map, but they have all the resource nodes, what was the point in killing them? You should try to kill buildings and take back map control every time you get a kill.
  • Glance at all the kill:death numbers on the scoreboard. Are the 2 teams' ratios close? You are probably playing a close game. Are the 2 teams' ratios very different? You are probably playing a game that is about to end. This leads to the most important part of all...
  • KDR is about trends - when the overall KDR effectiveness of a team increases, that team is free to gain a variety of advantages. When overall KDR decreases, that team is more vulnerable.
  • Ideally, you want the KDR of everyone on your team to be >1. This doesn't mean you try to hog all the kills - you have to split tasks effectively with teammates so that they don't die and make you vulnerable. While you're moving around the map building things and figuring out your strategy, make sure lots of enemies die and your teammates live. Don't hang your teammates out to dry, and don't hold up a white flag in front of a skulk's teeth.


I don't want to write any more, but I think anyone who read all those words should get the idea. Time for a conclusion!

Conclusion
KDR is important to understanding this game. It applies to all players, regardless of the role they are playing, and it applies to more than combat. It is not simply a tool for bragging rights - it's an easy quick way to see how a game is progressing, and how effective the players/teams are being. It is not the only measure of effectiveness, but it is a very important one.

Just because this game has 'strategy' concepts and support roles doesn't mean that you should be okay with dying a lot.
Just because it has FPS elements doesn't mean that you should play like Rambo and ignore your team.

Please don't make excuses for a low KDR - it's great if you are filling a support role, but you could do it much more effectively if you died less. This is always true.

Please don't diminish the accomplishments of players with high KDRs - they are paving the way for your team's victory, even if they're not talking to you much or building things.

Hopefully you can use KDRs as a measure of your effectiveness to help yourself improve, or to identify moments of weakness where you can attack your opponents and win games. If not, your eyes definitely got a good workout reading this. Thanks!
Post edited by Unknown User on
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Comments

  • Classic319Classic319 Join Date: 2010-11-06 Member: 74789Posts: 196Members
    I don't care and i hope almost nobody cares about KD ratio on this game, but there is still things like Fade which can dominate whole the team and make teamplay so vain. That's what i complain about. If there could be 70 kills 0 death guys even without any help of commander or collegues, why should there be 'teamplay'? I heard they are dealing with that problem which has always been the biggest problem of whole ns franchise, so we should pray for them working well on it
  • internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
    You already have 2 threads to cry about the fade in. Use those.
  • DrakennzDrakennz Join Date: 2012-03-11 Member: 148620Posts: 120Members
    Im not sure NS is the kind of game where K/D ratio matters - more so the points you have in game from playing as a team. I've found myself on the top of a game with pretty terrible K/D ratio but by playing as a team and kill structures, building and welding e.t.c i came out on top. This isn't CS or COD its a TEAM game in which while killing IS important, a persons K/D ratio should not justify how good they are.
    Drakennz a.k.a NaturaLErectioN (NS1)
    |NS| Naturally Selected Clan Leader
    Project Leader/Lead Designer - | ns2_addison|
  • internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
    edited March 2012
    QUOTE (Drakennz @ Mar 18 2012, 10:31 PM) »
    Im not sure NS is the kind of game where K/D ratio matters - more so the points you have in game from playing as a team. I've found myself on the top of a game with pretty terrible K/D ratio but by playing as a team and kill structures, building and welding e.t.c i came out on top. This isn't CS or COD its a TEAM game in which while killing IS important, a persons K/D ratio should not justify how good they are.


    Read the post before replying to it.

    If you reach the top of the scoreboard with a poor KDR, that's because things like building kills give more points than player kills. The game is designed that way to encourage players doing those things, but the score is not actually a measure of how effective you are being. If I change it so that killing an arms lab gives a player 10,000 points, does it mean that killing an arms lab is the most important thing to do? No. Meanwhile, the effect of the KDR (map control, vision, flexibility, spending) can never change because it is tied to every aspect of this game.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • DrakennzDrakennz Join Date: 2012-03-11 Member: 148620Posts: 120Members
    QUOTE (internetexplorer @ Mar 19 2012, 03:32 PM) »
    Read the post before replying to it.

    If you reach the top of the scoreboard with a poor KDR, that's because things like building kills give more points than player kills. The game is designed that way to encourage players doing those things, but the score is not actually a measure of how effective you are being. If I change it so that killing an arms lab gives a player 10,000 points, does it mean that killing an arms lab is the most important thing to do? No. Meanwhile, the effect of the KDR (map control, vision, flexibility, spending) can never change because it is tied to every aspect of this game.



    I did. This is my input. Thanks.
    Drakennz a.k.a NaturaLErectioN (NS1)
    |NS| Naturally Selected Clan Leader
    Project Leader/Lead Designer - | ns2_addison|
  • DrakennzDrakennz Join Date: 2012-03-11 Member: 148620Posts: 120Members
    edited March 2012
    You miss-understood me, while you make valid points and i agree for the most-part, it is my opinion that NS brings the type of gameplay where you can be an effective member of the team even if you cant aim for sh*t. Kill the opossing side is of course important but to measure a persons skill because they have a K/D ratio of 10:1 doesn't mean they are good, this just indicates they are good at aiming.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
    Drakennz a.k.a NaturaLErectioN (NS1)
    |NS| Naturally Selected Clan Leader
    Project Leader/Lead Designer - | ns2_addison|
  • ScardyBobScardyBob ScardyBob Join Date: 2009-11-25 Member: 69528Posts: 4,983Forum Admins, Forum Moderators, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow mod
    A nice explanation of KDR in NS2. I have long found aggregate team KDR is a useful measure of whose going to win, due to the snowball effects you've explained. Its also one of the things that disappoints me about NS2. There is very little you can do if your team is losing the 'KDR battle' outside of a rush (think lerk spikes on CS). Sadly, I find that strategy, tactics, and even teamwork matters less than being a very accurate shooter/melee attacker towards victory in NS2.
  • internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
    edited March 2012
    QUOTE (Drakennz @ Mar 18 2012, 10:40 PM) »
    You miss-understood me, while you make valid points and i agree for the most-part, it is my opinion that NS brings the type of gameplay where you can be an effective member of the team even if you cant aim for sh*t. Kill the opossing side is of course important but to measure a persons skill because they have a K/D ratio of 10:1 doesn't mean they are good, this just indicates they are good at aiming.


    Yes, but I address this in my post that you didn't read.

    If you are dying constantly to build res nodes, your KDR is an indicator of what a poor builder you are. You would build a lot more and provide a lot more information to your team if you died less. KDR doesn't have to include the K. Explain a situation where you don't think KDR matters, and I'll explain how it does.


    QUOTE (ScardyBob @ Mar 18 2012, 10:43 PM) »
    A nice explanation of KDR in NS2. I have long found aggregate team KDR is a useful measure of whose going to win, due to the snowball effects you've explained. Its also one of the things that disappoints me about NS2. There is very little you can do if your team is losing the 'KDR battle' outside of a rush (think lerk spikes on CS). Sadly, I find that strategy, tactics, and even teamwork matters less than being a very accurate shooter/melee attacker towards victory in NS2.


    This is true until half your team bands together and recognizes that chairs/hives are made out of tissue paper.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • ScardyBobScardyBob ScardyBob Join Date: 2009-11-25 Member: 69528Posts: 4,983Forum Admins, Forum Moderators, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow mod
    QUOTE (internetexplorer @ Mar 18 2012, 06:43 PM) »
    This is true until half your team bands together and recognizes that chairs/hives are made out of tissue paper.

    Yeah, but even this is effected by KDR, since people with higher KDRs can kill enough players/live long enough to destroy the CS/hive. In particular, I wish there were more tactics/strats you could do to make up for having a poor team KDR. The only ones I've truly found are:
    - Ninja obs beacon rush (before they switched it to where they beaconed to the nearest CS rather than obs)
    - Lerk CS rushes (only works because lerk spikes are currently OP against structures)
  • internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
    edited March 2012
    ARCs are a good way to work on this. You can guard a blob of ARCs without getting any kills or dying, and they will kill tons of stuff for you. You just need to do enough damage to drive enemies away (along with setting them on fire to reduce adrenaline gain). It's about KDR because you need to make sure to not die, but it's not as much about getting kills in order to be effective.

    I'm not sure if there's an equivalent mechanic for aliens, but maybe whips and shade spells will fill that role someday.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • TalesinTalesin Our own little well of hate Join Date: 2002-11-08 Member: 7710Posts: 6,947NS1 Playtester, Forum Moderators mod
    I have to disagree with pretty much everything about the original post. K/D ratio is only really useful in mindless shooters as an e-peen measure for fratboy-types, and does NOT apply to NS/NS2.

    If you have an (example) team of five, with one commander, three who can aim well, and someone with less ability to hold the X on the glowing circle, the poorer aimer can be just as effective in assisting a team by picking up a welder and acting as a repairman; phase through to any mini-bases under attack (or about to come under attack) and fire in the general direction of the enemy (see: suppressive fire) to delay the incoming enemies until reinforcements can pull back from the front lines to actually combat the threat. Then spend the rest of the time welding things back up to full health, deploying new structures, and so on. Scouting near the bases can also prove useful if they know how to listen.

    Same with the Skulk biting down an observatory. Killing that IS worth a death, comparing the baseline costs involved. 15 seconds' downtime respawning (plus a few upgrading) drastically overbalances the gain brought about by taking out that resource, both in cost to the Marine team as well as inconvenience of the related upgrades going down.

    These are just simple examples; NS/NS2 are *full* of things that will GREATLY benefit your team, while not showing up as a kill or a death. Not to mention that the game is played where teamwork is intended to be key.. you'll have three Marines shooting the same Kharaa, and it be complete luck as to who gets credit for that particular kill. 'TOP SCOER!!!11!' just makes you look like an idiot.
    The more important measure is the death-count alone, and keeping it fairly low. Not the willy-waggling ratio pushed by 'top' Counter Day of Modern Battlefield Halo Duty players.
    IPB Image
    NS -=- ROOTS
  • internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
    edited March 2012
    QUOTE (Talesin @ Mar 18 2012, 10:54 PM) »
    I have to disagree with pretty much everything about the original post. K/D ratio is only really useful in mindless shooters as an e-peen measure for fratboy-types, and does NOT apply to NS/NS2.


    That's too bad, because I addressed this in my post. Seeing ignorant garbage like this is a big part of why I made this thread.

    QUOTE (Talesin @ Mar 18 2012, 10:54 PM) »
    If you have an (example) team of five, with one commander, three who can aim well, and someone with less ability to hold the X on the glowing circle, the poorer aimer can be just as effective in assisting a team by picking up a welder and acting as a repairman; phase through to any mini-bases under attack (or about to come under attack) and fire in the general direction of the enemy (see: suppressive fire) to delay the incoming enemies until reinforcements can pull back from the front lines to actually combat the threat. Then spend the rest of the time welding things back up to full health, deploying new structures, and so on. Scouting near the bases can also prove useful if they know how to listen.


    If the welder dies over and over, he's welding less than he could be. He's buying more welders than he needs to. He's giving the enemy team more vision and map presence than his team has while he respawns. That's how KDR comes into it. I'm not saying no one should build or weld - I'm saying that KDR can be used to analyse how well they're doing it.

    If the welder/builder/support player has no ambition to fight, he will miss opportunities to develop as a player and to contribute in individual games. Players who typify themselves this way are simply missing out because of stubbornness (and a desire to post on forums about how KDR is for frat boys).

    QUOTE (Talesin @ Mar 18 2012, 10:54 PM) »
    Same with the Skulk biting down an observatory. Killing that IS worth a death, comparing the baseline costs involved. 15 seconds' downtime respawning (plus a few upgrading) drastically overbalances the gain brought about by taking out that resource, both in cost to the Marine team as well as inconvenience of the related upgrades going down.


    Yes, it usually does. What if you could kill the observatory and live to escape? That is what players should strive for. What if there is a marine with 2 HP around the corner reloading his rifle when you escape? If you didn't have the ambition to survive the observatory-biting stage, you would miss out on a further opportunity. All the highest-KDR players pursue the more 'strategic' opportunities in the game - they just know that killing and surviving is what allows those other things to be done, so it often takes priority.

    As an example, consider a group of 3 skulks invading marines' base part-way into a game. They will often kill nearby players as a top priority, then observatories/IPs (to prevent new players arriving), then other things. The priority they give to targets is tied to KDR - they strive to eliminate things that could kill them, so that they have more chances to deal damage and be effective. If you run into a base with 10 marines and bite a command station down to 10% health, but a MAC repairs it 2 seconds later because you died, what was the point? For reference, that happens in 90% of pub games. Someone shouts to their team about how "THE HIVE IS AT 2% GUYS WE'VE GOT THIS!" but when they show up to finish it off, it has been healed by crags/gorges. Pursuing building kills over player kills as a dogmatic rule limits how good you can be at this game.

    QUOTE (Talesin @ Mar 18 2012, 10:54 PM) »
    The more important measure is the death-count alone, and keeping it fairly low. Not the willy-waggling ratio pushed by 'top' Counter Day of Modern Battlefield Halo Duty players.


    The death count is probably more important than KDR, but that's still up for debate. For every person dutifully repairing and building, there is probably a teammate killing enemies who would threaten the builder if left unchecked. It's much too complicated to make a blanket statement and dismiss the players doing the killing as useless frat boy meatheads. That's what ScardyBob is referring to what he says "aggregate KDR" - in the large scale, across all the players, the team getting a higher KDR is probably holding more res nodes, getting more information and pursuing a more decisive strategy.

    Again, that's the point of this thread - I want people to stop crapping on topics by telling anyone who mentions KDR that they're a 6 year old who plays call of duty. It's not true and it lowers the level of discourse on the forum, for basically no gain (except the giggles and postcount you get). Personally, I'm a diehard Quake/Starcraft player, and I think about the concept of KDR in how I approach both of those games (along with other concepts). I'm not afraid to talk about it because I wouldn't touch any bad console shooters with a 10 foot pole. What's your excuse?
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • Classic319Classic319 Join Date: 2010-11-06 Member: 74789Posts: 196Members
    QUOTE (internetexplorer @ Mar 19 2012, 11:30 AM) »
    You already have 2 threads to cry about the fade in. Use those.


    Thought you wrote this also for those complaint against fade, sorry.
    But i hope you never say word 'cry'. If those are cry, you are also crying to let people understand kd-ratio. It seems a bit rude, but if you like to cry, i won't bother you anymore :)
  • GORGEousGORGEous Join Date: 2012-02-19 Member: 146762Posts: 1,456Members, NS2 Map Tester
    Saying that KDR doesn't apply to NS2 (or any game, really) is rather ridiculous. Do you not see the benefit of killing the enemy player while remaining alive yourself?

    Now, if you said that KDR isn't the whole story, or even most of it, then I'd wholeheartedly agree. NS2 is about resource control and teamwork. But pretending that kills don't help and deaths don't hurt is nonsense. Sometimes dying is worth it to get a harvester down or scout something, but you'd always prefer to not die.
    image
  • internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
    edited March 2012
    QUOTE (GORGEous @ Mar 18 2012, 11:02 PM) »
    Saying that KDR doesn't apply to NS2 (or any game, really) is rather ridiculous. Do you not see the benefit of killing the enemy player while remaining alive yourself?

    Now, if you said that KDR isn't the whole story, or even most of it, then I'd wholeheartedly agree. NS2 is about resource control and teamwork. But pretending that kills don't help and deaths don't hurt is nonsense. Sometimes dying is worth it to get a harvester down or scout something, but you'd always prefer to not die.


    Right. It's as simple as that. If players are not sure what they should strive for, it's to stay alive and do things. If you live for the whole game and never get a kill, but you saved 10 res towers from destruction, you're being an effective player. If you kill 5 enemies for every time you die, you're being affective. It's all very simple, and the value of it is that you can trace every facet of the game to kills and deaths (unless both teams are respectfully ignoring one another). Players who fight rather than playing support roles should strive to kill enemies (rather than wound them), because the gains for that are much bigger and farther-reaching.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • eh?eh? Join Date: 2012-03-03 Member: 147997Posts: 517Members
    If you limited KDR discussion to just marines and just when aliens are on 1 hive. I'd argue KDR is probably THE determining factor of marine success. More than map control or anything else. Just because of egg spawn mechanics. It just simply gives the marines any and everything.

    But as hives spring up, KDR has some diminishing returns for marines.

    More or less I think this is just explaining that NS2 is more deathmatch-centric for the first 3-4 minutes than it is Risk-like in territorial / resource control as the game progresses.



  • internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
    QUOTE (eh? @ Mar 18 2012, 11:10 PM) »
    If you limited KDR discussion to just marines and just when aliens are on 1 hive. I'd argue KDR is probably THE determining factor of marine success. More than map control or anything else. Just because of egg spawn mechanics. It just simply gives the marines any and everything.

    But as hives spring up, KDR has some diminishing returns for marines.

    More or less I think this is just explaining that NS2 is more deathmatch-centric for the first 3-4 minutes than it is Risk-like in territorial / resource control as the game progresses.


    KDR is also useful for analysing possible issues with the game (like egg-death creating a checkmate situation for the aliens).

    For instance, when people complain about the fade, you can think about KDR to decide what should happen. How many marines is a fade 'worth'? If a marine with a jetpack and flamethrower dies to kill a fade, is it worth it? They have equal resource costs, certainly, but the fade provides much more map control with its speed and regeneration. If 3 LMGs die to kill a fade, was it worthwhile? It's not clear - those 3 players could have all run off in different directions and built 3 res towers if they didn't die to kill the fade. How many marines is it 'fair' for a player to kill when they evolve to the fade? How high should a fade player's KDR get before something is clearly wrong? This is what Classic319's threads are pointing to (even if he says he doesn't care about KDR).
  • OnosFactoryOnosFactory New Zealand Join Date: 2008-07-16 Member: 64637Posts: 885Members
    Just to muddy the waters abit, seems as this games a bit like a rts, K:D as a raw score can be a bit skewed in favour of killing lesser units.

    A Mammoth Tank in C&C is a bit scarier than 5 riflemen, yeah? But killing all 6 is still 6 kills.

    So if I do really ass vs skulks, but suddenly pull some magic and pistol whip 2 fades and turn the game around for the team, then yay plunder bunnies and sugar treasure chests for me!

    Cue IE dissing me for daring to comment on that wall of text.
    - 1991 is the Halcyon year of gaming -
     
    Best quote off locked NS2 forum ever:
     
    "The Rifle has a higher DPS than the Shotgun, whether you choose to believe it or not."
  • TalesinTalesin Our own little well of hate Join Date: 2002-11-08 Member: 7710Posts: 6,947NS1 Playtester, Forum Moderators mod
    edited March 2012
    QUOTE (internetexplorer @ Mar 18 2012, 09:00 PM) »
    That's too bad, because I addressed this in my post. Seeing ignorant garbage like this is a big part of why I made this thread.

    A thread which only perpetuates the mindless garbage that is paying attention to K/D.

    QUOTE
    If the welder dies over and over, he's welding less than he could be. He's buying more welders than he needs to. He's giving the enemy team more vision and map presence than his team has while he respawns. That's how KDR comes into it. I'm not saying no one should build or weld - I'm saying that KDR can be used to analyse how well they're doing it.

    Except of course that you don't get any 'kill' points for welding, guarding, scouting, or other team-indispensable activities making the ratio worthless. Only SHOOTAN THANGS.

    QUOTE
    Yes, it usually does. What if you could kill the observatory and live to escape? That is what players should strive for.

    Well thank you Captain Obvious. I was under the impression that you had to die immediately after! The phrasing was pretty clear; if it is a hard choice between you and the observatory dying, or you and the obs living, the cost of an obs-down far outweighs preventing a Skulk death. But not according to K/D. If you can kill it and get away that is pretty plainly preferable. We were not talking about that as being an option though.

    QUOTE
    As an example, consider a group of 3 skulks invading marines' base part-way into a game. They will often kill nearby players as a top priority, then observatories/IPs (to prevent new players arriving), then other things. The priority they give to targets is tied to KDR - they strive to eliminate things that could kill them

    No, that is not guided by K/D. That is guided by an order of priority of risk to reward. Eliminating threats first, then going for the cheddar. If you have the CC down to 5%, the Skulks will NOT stop to kill the Marines, IPs, mines or turrets if they are smart, they'll kill the CC as an irreplaceable target of opportunity, taking a full team wipe (or two) if necessary to remove the Marines' ability to build anything. A stupid decision, rating by K/D.

    QUOTE
    The death count is probably more important than KDR, but that's still up for debate.

    No. No, it's not. It IS more important than the ratio, period. While sitting back to ensure NO deaths isn't helpful, the kill-count is worthless other than as a personal ego-stroke.

    QUOTE
    Again, that's the point of this thread - I want people to stop crapping on topics by telling anyone who mentions KDR that they're a 6 year old who plays call of duty.

    It'd help if that wasn't the majority of those who do.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
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  • internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
    QUOTE (OnosFactory @ Mar 18 2012, 11:16 PM) »
    Just to muddy the waters abit, seems as this games a bit like a rts, K:D as a raw score can be a bit skewed in favour of killing lesser units.

    A Mammoth Tank in C&C is a bit scarier than 5 riflemen, yeah? But killing all 6 is still 6 kills.

    So if I do really ass vs skulks, but suddenly pull some magic and pistol whip 2 fades and turn the game around for the team, then yay plunder bunnies and sugar treasure chests for me!

    Cue IE dissing me for daring to comment on that wall of text.


    Well, it's obviously worth a lot more resources to kill the fades, so that's good. You should strive to survive the skulks as well, though. You should want your KDR to be higher, and identify the ways you can make that happen (in this case, work on outliving those skulks).

    In an RTS game like Starcraft, unit cost is a much bigger factor than KDR. If I kill 100 zerglings, but I ran out of units to do it and the zerg re-made all his stuff while my barracks made 10 marines, I will get overrun.

    In NS, the players contribute more than resource spending/gaining. They also move around and provide information - that's why staying alive in general is something to pursue (even if you can trade for things like fades and jetpacks).
  • OhnojojoOhnojojo Join Date: 2011-08-01 Member: 113400Posts: 364Members
    QUOTE (Classic319 @ Mar 18 2012, 09:29 PM) »
    I don't care and i hope almost nobody cares about KD ratio on this game, but there is still things like Fade which can dominate whole the team and make teamplay so vain. That's what i complain about. If there could be 70 kills 0 death guys even without any help of commander or collegues, why should there be 'teamplay'? I heard they are dealing with that problem which has always been the biggest problem of whole ns franchise, so we should pray for them working well on it

    i haven't ever seen a game with a fade that gets 70 kills and 0 deaths.


    I've seen a fade get 30 kills and 2 deaths. But the alien team lost in the end because marines led a well planned double hive rush.
    Just goes to show that KDR, while important isn't always the deciding factor. TEAMWORK and STRATEGY can over come even the strongest fade. So enough whining.
    And yes there are cases where a marine team is simply TOO NOOB to do anything against a SUPER PRO fade. But I think its cool that a single player or a handful can lead a game and make a difference.
  • internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
    edited March 2012
    QUOTE (Ohnojojo @ Mar 18 2012, 11:20 PM) »
    i haven't ever seen a game with a fade that gets 70 kills and 0 deaths.


    Word of honour:
    I did it on build 198 in a game on tram, and we lost because the entire rest of my team was so awful. KDR isn't everything!
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • OhnojojoOhnojojo Join Date: 2011-08-01 Member: 113400Posts: 364Members
    QUOTE (internetexplorer @ Mar 18 2012, 10:21 PM) »
    Word of honour:
    I did it on build 198 in a game on tram, and we lost because the entire rest of my team was so awful. KDR isn't everything!


    My point exactly.
    Maybe UWE should take out the whole kill tracker and have the scoreboard show only points.
    L4D doesn't show kills, it shows score. Nobody cares that as a zombie you die 2431293847987 times. They care about winning the game.
    Something like this should be implemented in NS2, in my opinion. It is nice to look at a massive KDR but its nicer to win a game.
  • internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
    If the score number actually reflected the results produced by the high-KDR players, that would be fine. As it stands, it's almost completely unrelated because of how the numbers are scaled. This is why everyone who has a poor KDR makes excuses for it by saying their 'score' is higher.
  • TalesinTalesin Our own little well of hate Join Date: 2002-11-08 Member: 7710Posts: 6,947NS1 Playtester, Forum Moderators mod
    edited March 2012
    QUOTE (internetexplorer @ Mar 18 2012, 09:29 PM) »
    If the score number actually reflected the results produced by the high-KDR players, that would be fine. As it stands, it's almost completely unrelated because of how the numbers are scaled. This is why everyone who has a poor KDR makes excuses for it by saying their 'score' is higher.

    Or alternately, if people weren't hanging their performance on an unrelated metric like K/D, their score might improve. Again. Three Marines firing at one Skulk. Only one of the three gets the 'kill' point, while all three were contributing to the kill. There is no 'assist' counter in the flawed and useless K/D system.

    If points are applied for most/all useful team-positive acts, it should actually provide a useful measurement, rather than who got luckiest at putting the last bullet into X enemy players, regardless of their upgrades or the quality of the fight. Except of course for the CoD kiddies harping on about K/D, who can't figure out why their score is abysmal when their entire focus is on K/D, instead of helping their team to win the game in ways other than finding things to shoot.

    Player 1 kills 10 skulks and dies once. All 10 were last-shots while travelling in a large group.
    Player 2 kills 3 Skulks, 5 Fades, 2 Lerks and an Onos, and scares off a raiding party on a minibase, welds up a few RTs and follows the Comm's orders to scout out an area. All singlehanded. She dies 14 times over the course of the game.

    K/D says that player 2 sucks, and player 1 waggles his K/D around like a typical pre-adolescent. When anyone with half a brain can see that player 1 was terribad, and player 2 was an incredibly useful asset to her team. K/D is WORTHLESS.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
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  • internetexplorerinternetexplorer Join Date: 2011-10-13 Member: 127255Posts: 1,369Members
    edited March 2012
    QUOTE (Talesin @ Mar 18 2012, 11:35 PM) »
    Or alternately, if people weren't hanging their performance on an unrelated metric like K/D, their score might improve. Again. Three Marines firing at one Skulk. Only one of the three gets the 'kill' point, while all three were contributing to the kill. There is no 'assist' counter in the flawed and useless K/D system.


    what if they didn't all focus their fire and the skulk took 2 of them down before it died? how useless is KDR in analyzing that?
    What if they add an assist counter like in TF2 to indicate which players do the bulk of the damage in combat? Surely that is an important thing to achieve, right?

    Once again, nobody is 'hanging their performance' on KDR. The point of this thread is that it can be a useful measure (plus an explanation of how). If somebody is doing that, talk to them about it. That's not what the thread is about. If you think KDR has absolutely no value whatsoever, you have the entire OP to argue with. It's right there waiting.


    QUOTE (Talesin @ Mar 18 2012, 11:35 PM) »
    K/D says that player 2 sucks, and player 1 waggles his K/D around like a typical pre-adolescent. When anyone with half a brain can see that player 1 was terribad, and player 2 was an incredibly useful asset to her team. K/D is WORTHLESS.


    KDR says that player 2 cost the enemy team lots of resources, but did not deny as much map presence/information (assuming the kills are spread over the timespan of the 14 deaths), and that while player 1 cost the enemy team lots of map presence/egg time, it did not cost them lots of resources. Player 1 may not have cost the enemy team much 'time' if the kills occurred close by. In that case, the enemy team was much more vulnerable for a short timespan than if the players had died farther apart in time.

    That's what this thread is about - KDR and how it ties into the situations that produce it. Did player 1 have the opportunity to do what player 2 did? Probably not, and he was certainly more flexible while being alive longer. The fact that he didn't weld/build anything could point to issues with that player, or that those tasks were not the correct choice during his 10-kill life.

    The fact that anyone killed those skulks is good - the sooner they are killed, and the fewer teammates that fall to them, the better. The more time the enemies spend respawning while your squad moves around, the better. When players share in combat, you can expect the aggregate KDR to increase (because they become more difficult to kill by stray enemies). When two big groups of players collide, the aggregate KDR is more complicated but it still tells you how effective the 2 teams are being. If you don't like looking at KDR for individual players, consider how it applies to whole teams. This isn't about glorifying the kid who goes 30-1 while the whole rest of his team suffers.

    I'm not advocating for anyone to obsess over how many skulks they can kill per life in a vacuum. I'm saying that it's useful to think about your kill:death effectiveness, rather than brushing it aside while raging about halo players.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • IeptBarakatIeptBarakat The most difficult name to speak ingame. Join Date: 2009-07-10 Member: 68107Posts: 2,087Members, Constellation, NS2 Map Tester, Reinforced - Diamond, Reinforced - Shadow
    People who die more are less effective at ______, than if they died less!

    More at '11.


    I'd like to see just the score, the kills, and the assists.

    I tend to favor lemming tactics such as being a distraction or die in the process killing or at least mostly killing a hive. There are also people who suicide just to get to the other side of the map faster. Which is one of the reasons why games like tribes ascend removed the death count, as it didn't really matter when people started killing themselves tactically.
  • TalesinTalesin Our own little well of hate Join Date: 2002-11-08 Member: 7710Posts: 6,947NS1 Playtester, Forum Moderators mod
    edited March 2012
    QUOTE (internetexplorer @ Mar 18 2012, 09:36 PM) »
    what if they didn't all focus their fire and the skulk took 2 of them down before it died? how useless is KDR in analyzing that?

    Completely worthless still.

    If anything, assigning a baseline score to a player life, and adding score based on upgrades carried and potentially other variables like number of teammates in range, and subtracting for their own upgrades would be FAR more effective. At that point you do something like starting off a Skulk with a baseline 3 points. Plus 3 for carapace/other upgrades, minus one for the marine's armor 1, minus two for the marine's shotgun. Making an upgraded Skulk against an upgraded Marine reward the same as a non-upgraded version of each. Count additional evolutions as just bonus points. Same with MT.
    You could also do this on a fractional basis for damage-done. A kill awarding an extra bump of points to symbolize the time the enemy will spend waiting to respawn (as if being one enemy down wasn't enough of a benefit in and of itself), making it less of a concern that people might just 'farm' points by partly killing enemies and letting them run off to heal up (though as far as that goes, see wartime tactics regarding not killing, but wounding enemies being more effective).

    Then again, that's a standalone ranking system that might actually provide useful performance metrics. UNLIKE K/D ratio.
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  • GORGEousGORGEous Join Date: 2012-02-19 Member: 146762Posts: 1,456Members, NS2 Map Tester
    QUOTE (Talesin @ Mar 18 2012, 11:18 PM) »
    No. No, it's not. It[# of deaths] IS more important than the ratio, period. While sitting back to ensure NO deaths isn't helpful, the kill-count is worthless other than as a personal ego-stroke.


    I agree that KDR doesn't win games by its self, but that doesn't make it useless. I'm not sure how you are holding these two contradictory thoughts at the same time. You're basically saying a) dying is a bad and b) killing is meaningless. But a kill is about equal and opposite to a death. When you die (negative), I get a kill (thus a positive).

    The only way to rationalize that KDR is meaningless is to claim that both kills and deaths are meaningless. That's nonsense.

    If you're just trying to say that KDR isn't the whole story or the biggest factor in winning, then you would be correct in my opinion. But to say KDR, kills, and deaths are meaningless is just ridiculous.
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  • WheeeeWheeee Join Date: 2003-02-18 Member: 13713Posts: 4,160Members, Reinforced - Shadow
    NS and NS2 aren't really games where you can project KDR into wins and losses. While it can be a decent general measure of player effectiveness and skill, especially at the extremes (a player with a 10:1 kdr likely knows how to play the game very well and is executing a lot of high level strategy as well as clearing the map of hostiles, whereas a player with 1:10 kdr is likely clogging up the spawn queue so much and is so ineffective in the field that it equates to the team being down a player), there are plenty of other factors to consider: a skulk who goes around chomping down extractors the whole game might have a worse KDR than his skulk buddy who solely ambushes rambo marines, but which one is the more effective in assisting the team win? It's difficult to measure what the true impact of KDR is other than in generalities. A skulk rush might be successful even if 3 skulks die to 2 marines, if they manage to kill some structures as well. A solo skulk might be effective in delaying a push by marines even if he dies without getting any kills, simply by projecting his presence near the marines. There's way too many factors involved in the game to analyze KDR in a vacuum.
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