NS Revolution - power nodes and infestation

.ADHd.ADHd Join Date: 2012-02-18 Member: 146565Posts: 543Members
Take back the guts of our game.
Natural selection is a game that is for the players by the players. We have a lot of say in this game. We have a voice and the community and players know the game best. After all, we spend hundreds and thousands of hours playing these games so we better know a little about how it should be played. The developers, while extremely talented and intelligent, simply don't have the time to play the games as much as we do. They need our feedback and right now I am angry with how the game is going. I paid for this product and want to see it prove it's worth and right now the game is slipping downhill with every new patch. I don't understand why this is happening but heres my theory.

The adding of powernodes and infestation is ruining Natural Selection 2 for the creative players. There are too many rules in NS2, I assume this is to make the game more understandable for the masses. That may sound harsh but I for one believe it to be true. I will now get into the gritty details of why these gameplay elements hinder this game and actually over-complicate it even more. The main reasons are that power nodes and infestation are mostly an aesthetic implementation to show off the game engine. Their actual use in game is overstated and overcomplicated when they should purely be there for what they were made for... effects.

The reason NS1 was so breakthrough is because aliens and marines had freedom to build anywhere they see fit. So many ways to play... so many fun clever ways to win. Now you have to have power in a room and infestation which makes things tedious and really slows the gameplay. It also forces each team to play in an extremely LINEAR fashion. Power packs are not the answer. In classic NS the marines could place a comm chair and any structure at ANY point of the map. This makes the game 100 times more tactical and creative. It raises the skill ceiling 10 fold which is what this game needs right now. It is starting to turn into another generic rule bound shooter game that just wants to show off graphics. If you know all the rules and limitations of the game you know how the game has to be played out. Reminds me of counter-strike where the game is played the same every round. It starts to get very redundant. I don't think the developers intended it to be this way, and they are trying to fix it now somewhat with changes to alien commander and powerpacks. This is a bandaid for the problem and I think the developers know it. The only restricted build area should be tech points for alien hives. This simply adds a little more structure to the game while not killing the creative fun factor. It also makes for interesting ways for mappers to design levels... making fun choke points and etc.

I've come to realize that powernodes and infestation are almost purely eye candy because in over a years time of playing this game I have yet to see a practical reason for having them in the game. It has only hindered my playability. I am extremely glad people are working on NS1 balancing mods. This is what the community really needs right now. We need hardcore gamers who are true to the NS concept who have played the game for thousands of hours and really know what true balance and freedom of play is. I know this sounds dangerous as splitting the community this early in development could be very bad. I, however, will not sit back and watch what should be the core gameplay be stripped from this title.

I say leave infestation in the game but make it purely for hive sight, healing and as a visual marker of who controls what area of the map. It should not effect the gameplay any further. Leave the powernodes in but have them only effect the lighting and atmosphere. Perhaps make it so power on in any room will make it easier for the commander to spot enemies on the minimap. You still get to keep the visual effects and all the hard work that went into programming these features, but you will give back the power to the players. It isn't realistic to think the space marines wouldn't have self powering structures by the time they are flying around in space. Structures only being able to be built on the infestation does however make sense but really hurts the gameplay. Instead, each structure placed should have its own small ring of infestation grow out from it... which can be connected to the hives infestation if the structure wants to be healed automatically. This would now leave a purpose for the infestation but not make it the focal point of alien map control.

By unrestricting where teams can build, you open up a huge tactical element to the game. This gives balance back to the marines whose main piece of technology is the phase gate. You should be able to drop one anywhere and not have to worry about walking 100 feet around the corner and into infestation to get the power up. It's extremely frustrating and imbalanced to build a stealth phase only to have 1 skulk kill the power that was around the corner out of view. This makes it too easy for aliens to simply cut off the marines power and dominate all their structures (And all the res put into making all of them). Changing how structures are built on aliens also takes a few aliens out of the early game for gorging, making it an essential unit once again. Gorges should have to "build" the structures that the commander drops. It's overpowered to have self building structures. There is simply too many fighters out on the field right now for the aliens. Now the commander and gorges need to work together like in old builds. Now teamwork is important on aliens again.

I know the developers are creative people and have lots of creative ideas for how powernodes and infestation should be implemented. However, although their ideas may be creative it doesn't make the gameplay any more creative. In fact it kills it.

I hope the developers read this and take it into consideration so that the community isn't split in two. I would be down for no alien commander and giving all power back to the gorges. Makes a whole lot more sense at this point. Mods will be released to counter-act the way this game has been balanced. They are being made right now and these mods are going to become even more prevalent in the coming builds if these design flaws aren't looked at from a practical point of view. I 100% support the mods but would rather just have the game balanced so well that there are no need for these mods. There is an easy way to cater to both sides of the equation here. I think my ideas are an elegant solution to the balancing and linear gameplay.
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Comments

  • DrakennzDrakennz Join Date: 2012-03-11 Member: 148620Posts: 120Members
    I understand what you are saying here, not saying i agree though. NS1 is...well NS1 THIS is NS2 not NS1 HD. While being able to relocate wherever was fun and some what tactical, being forced to have your CC/Hive in set location causes you to think more outside the box, instead of thinking: oh i will just simply re-locate to this vent here and then we will win, you have to think about you choices and actions as this directly affects how the game plays out.

    NS2 IS a sequel remember and while NS1 was the best game ever made ever, NS2 is taking a slightly different approach here and i think we just need to accept that.

    Im sure that the UWE boys have these kinda thoughts at heart and keep them in mind when developing. Just try to remember these guys made NS1 and know what made NS1 so great, they will not let us down.

    Try to stay positive about the changes my friend :-)
    Drakennz a.k.a NaturaLErectioN (NS1)
    |NS| Naturally Selected Clan Leader
    Project Leader/Lead Designer - | ns2_addison|
  • RyneRyne Join Date: 2012-02-25 Member: 147408Posts: 443Members, NS2 Map Tester
    QUOTE (Drakennz @ Apr 18 2012, 05:49 PM) »
    I understand what you are saying here, not saying i agree though. NS1 is...well NS1 THIS is NS2 not NS1 HD. While being able to relocate wherever was fun and some what tactical, being forced to have your CC/Hive in set location causes you to think more outside the box, instead of thinking: oh i will just simply re-locate to this vent here and then we will win, you have to think about you choices and actions as this directly affects how the game plays out.

    NS2 IS a sequel remember and while NS1 was the best game ever made ever, NS2 is taking a slightly different approach here and i think we just need to accept that.

    Im sure that the UWE boys have these kinda thoughts at heart and keep them in mind when developing. Just try to remember these guys made NS1 and know what made NS1 so great, they will not let us down.

    Try to stay positive about the changes my friend :-)



    I do not understand post like these. Rather than using the tired argument "This isn't NS1!!!", how about explaining why you disagree with him. Counter his actual argument, don't just blanket say "NS2 is not NS1"

    And having fixed locations hardly causes more "out of the box" thinking...in fact, it is the exact opposite. Relocating to some obscure corner in NS1 was thinking outside the box because it was not where it would be expected.
    Ryne aka R-W-Ryne (twitch)

    Trying to stream NS2 often: everything from scrims, to gathers, to pub play!
    Ryne's Twitch Page | Ryne's Casts (Steam Group) | Blind's Twitch Page
  • .ADHd.ADHd Join Date: 2012-02-18 Member: 146565Posts: 543Members
    edited April 2012
    QUOTE (Drakennz @ Apr 18 2012, 07:49 PM) »
    I understand what you are saying here, not saying i agree though. NS1 is...well NS1 THIS is NS2 not NS1 HD. While being able to relocate wherever was fun and some what tactical, being forced to have your CC/Hive in set location causes you to think more outside the box, instead of thinking: oh i will just simply re-locate to this vent here and then we will win, you have to think about you choices and actions as this directly affects how the game plays out.

    NS2 IS a sequel remember and while NS1 was the best game ever made ever, NS2 is taking a slightly different approach here and i think we just need to accept that.

    Im sure that the UWE boys have these kinda thoughts at heart and keep them in mind when developing. Just try to remember these guys made NS1 and know what made NS1 so great, they will not let us down.

    Try to stay positive about the changes my friend :-)


    Also, keep in mind a lot of NS1 was actually community made... including maps and textures... I even heard rumors a lot was programmed by a guy outside uwe. This is not meant to be a cheapshot towards the devs and their abilities to make games.... it is simply a way for me to show that outside opinion is very important in the creation of a product. I am a music artist and I usually take criticism pretty hard. But I often ignore the criticism and later on realize I was wrong. Negative and positive criticism has its place. I am a fanboy but I am not a worshipper... I want to be one who can contribute my personal and deepest thoughts about this game... even if that means going against what the developers think is really right.

    I understand its a different game and all. I am just angry! NS1 was a perfect formula. Don't fix what ain't broken. This game can still be different almost entirely different... just keep the basics the same is all I want.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • DrakennzDrakennz Join Date: 2012-03-11 Member: 148620Posts: 120Members
    QUOTE (Drakennz @ Apr 19 2012, 12:49 PM) »
    Im sure that the UWE boys have these kinda thoughts at heart and keep them in mind when developing. Just try to remember these guys made NS1 and know what made NS1 so great, they will not let us down.


    This is my point, i made it. 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
    QUOTE (.ADHd @ Apr 19 2012, 01:11 PM) »
    Also keep in mind a lot of NS1 was actually community made... including maps and textures... I even heard rumors a lot was programmed by a guy outside uwe.

    I understand its a different game and all. I am just angry! NS1 was a perfect formula. Don't fix what ain't broken. This game can still be different almost entirely different... just keep the basics the same is all I want.



    Yeah like i said i can see what your saying and its definitely valid, im sorry if i have somehow caused offense by posting here. :-) Peace
    Drakennz a.k.a NaturaLErectioN (NS1)
    |NS| Naturally Selected Clan Leader
    Project Leader/Lead Designer - | ns2_addison|
  • .ADHd.ADHd Join Date: 2012-02-18 Member: 146565Posts: 543Members
    QUOTE (Drakennz @ Apr 18 2012, 08:14 PM) »
    Yeah like i said i can see what your saying and its definitely valid, im sorry if i have somehow caused offense by posting here. :-) Peace


    No offense taken. I am just riled up right now. Cause my favorite game is NS2 and I don't want that is to turn to a was. I play more NS1 than NS2 these days :-/. NS1 was so addicting because each round you never knew what was gonna happen.

    I feel like a lot of people who have not played NS1 extensively will have a similar response to my post. The problem is people don't get why NS1 was so polished and balanced because they haven't played it enough or at all.

    This game is yes... a sequel and will be different, but that is besides the point. Counter-strike series stays true to CS gameplay. COD stays true to COD. BF series keeps true to BF (With exceptions of bad company and BF3, etc). All these games stay true to their basic gameplay mechanics because they WORK.

    At current the only real similar things between ns1 and ns2 are the characters, and some of the structures and abilities are the same. Other than that the gameplay is completely different. It seems like ns2 is a completely different game and borrowed only the general concept from the first game. It doesn't feel like a true sequel which would simply add to the features and expand upon the general idea. This game just takes a hard right turn.
  • playerplayer Join Date: 2010-09-12 Member: 73982Posts: 1,677Members
    QUOTE (Drakennz @ Apr 19 2012, 12:49 AM) »
    Just try to remember these guys made NS1 and know what made NS1 so great

    Hmmm... mwuah... well... pssss.... grmlb....

    So anyway, NS2c is looking good...
  • thefonzthefonz Join Date: 2011-06-22 Member: 105847Posts: 491Members
    1) tech points limiting CCs is fine. Think SC2, yea you can build a cmd center / hive / nexus anywhere. But those structures are generally fixed to specific to locations by their proximity to resources. In NS2 it is the tech point. Besides, UWE is committed to this one, changing it at this point in development is highly unlikely.

    2) DI limiting where marines/aliens can build is also fine. Marines do need a way to clear DI faster though.... *cough* flamethrower... Compared to how quickly DI can be spread, it takes far to long to recede. In general I like the territorial control aspects that DI brings to the game. It is also not overly restrictive to the aliens. a gorge can drop a miniscyst for forward building, though minicysts need a way to live longer un-attended for true viability. In regards to hivesight, I would perfer DI to only provide hivesight is if the marines attack something. with the advent of cloaked drifter spies, aliens may have too many sets of eyes.

    3) PGs and powernodes. I don't like it either you can ninja gate if the powernode is always going to be somewhere in plain sight. powerpacks are a partial solution, but since the Node always drops with the first structure, it is still a dead give away.

    4) powernodes in general. I think they serve a good purpose. give aliens a way to take out super entrenched marines. Aliens have NO siege type weapons. they must always expose themselves in order to attack a base. Powernodes provide a weak link in the marine defense. Personally im not sure if all structures turning off is a great idea... I would prefer strutures to function at a reduced rate, say 50-75% slower. maybe turrets and Obs should still become completely non functional, but IPs, armories, extractors could still function much more slowly.
  • HughHugh Cameraman San Francisco, CA Join Date: 2010-04-18 Member: 71444Posts: 1,585Super Administrators, Forum Admins, Forum Moderators, NS2 Developer, NS2 Playtester, Reinforced - Silver, Reinforced - Onos, WC 2013 - Shadow, Subnautica Developer admin
    We do not agree that new ideas are killing this game. We do not agree that new ideas are destroying what makes NS great. We do not agree that we have inserted gameplay elements purely to show off a game engine. You seriously underestimate the amount of time that every NS2 developer spends playing NS2 and NS1 every single day. You belittle those that devoted so much of their lives to creating the game starting twelve years ago with you snide jab in post #4. That won't get you where you want.

    This thread will no doubt grow as they always do, fed by a vocal minority. It is tired, it is old, this path has been trodden far too many times. Those that wish to tread here again are missing out on contributing to the grow of an exciting new game.

    Aside, .ADHd, I can't wait to cast you competitively, I know it will be great. You're clearly very passionate about the game and it's wonderful to see. This kind of thread, effectively advocating creation of NS:Spark by the development team facilitating said mod's creation, does not become you.
    The fastest way to contact me is via @hugh_jeremy on Twitter! Add me on Steam: Strayan. I do not check forum PMs.
    Keep up to date on what is going on with: Unknown Worlds | Natural Selection 2 | Subnautica
    Chat with the UWE team: Charlie | Max | Brian 1 | Cory | Brian A | Dushan | Lukas | Steve
  • IronHorseIronHorse CDT Technical Support & QA Join Date: 2010-05-08 Member: 71669Posts: 6,089Members, Super Administrators, Forum Admins, Forum Moderators, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Subnautica Playtester, Subnautica PT Lead, Community Dev Team admin
    edited April 2012
    QUOTE (.ADHd @ Apr 18 2012, 05:11 PM) »
    Also keep in mind a lot of NS1 was actually community made... including maps and textures... I even heard rumors a lot was programmed by a guy outside uwe.


    Do you think that this isn't the case with NS2??
    Matso and Sewlek are contributors to a MAJOR degree! (you would really be surprised)
    Also what about the mappers that are not only making maps for 3rd party download, but the guys whose maps are now "official"? (3 so far by my count)
    And then there's all the little mods that have been adapted into the game in some form or another.

    IDK, Adhd.. i feel theres a slight case of nostalgia luvin' going on here.
    I get your arguments and my only rebuttal is something you dont want to hear: Its still very much a WIP. (just look at this latest patch!!)
    With techpoints having less (if any) real significance, who knows... maybe they will be removed entirely? Like i said in the previous sentence, its a WIP... so keep doing what you are doing and contribute the ideas. The more there are, the more they will be heard - but i warn that angry voices will fall on deaf ears, more than likely.

    There can be a fine line between passion/care and vehement criticism.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
    QUOTE (Techercizer @ Feb 3 2012, 10:47 AM) »
    Every time you ask for troubleshooting without providing system info, ATI adds a rendering bug for an upcoming game.

    When you feel you need to be rude or angry about a game, just read these links and remember what role you are playing:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Online_disinhibition_effect
    http://www.eldergame.com/2008/06/taming-the-forum-tiger/
  • Locke504Locke504 Join Date: 2010-04-23 Member: 71511Posts: 63Members, NS2 Map Tester
    NS1 was easily my favorite FPS ever, but I like the new direction of NS2. I think the problem, if there was one, with NS1, was the games learning curve. NS style gameplay with the RTS element was really hard for some people to get into, and as a result, we ended up with nothing but NS1 Combat servers.

    I don't want to see that happen again, and if we need to streamline the RTS aspects of the game to make it happen, so be it. That this game (and NS1) is the most intuitive combination of FPS and RTS elements is it's shining point imo.

    Eventually you'll have custom maps and maybe even some custom win conditions for servers to implement. The game is still very much in the trial and error phase of balancing, and finding the best initial balance to your core gameplay should be the main priority......well that, and optimization. =P

    Alllll of that said, I really was a fan of those hardcore NS1 games dropping ninja bases everywhere. I can't say I blame you for wanting to get back to that very hectic, very fun style of gameplay. In NS1, there was no such thing as a linear match. =P


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  • RisingSunRisingSun Rising Join Date: 2004-04-19 Member: 28015Posts: 892Members, Constellation, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow
    QUOTE (Locke504 @ Apr 19 2012, 04:13 AM) »
    Eventually you'll have custom maps and maybe even some custom win conditions for servers to implement. The game is still very much in the trial and error phase of balancing, and finding the best initial balance to your core gameplay should be the main priority......well that, and optimization. =P


    Everyone knows my stance by now and i agree with .ADHd. The problem with your statement Locke is that we are less than 4 months from release. It is scary to see a game in such flux so close to a finished product.

    On the other hand i am very excited about NS:Sprark or NS2c =)

    The devs are too entrenched now to ever go back on any of their major design decisions. They are close to getting rid of one in the next patch when it comes to the Alien Khamm. They basically said he wasn't the bottle neck to an alien victory like the marine comm is... So what is he there for? Just a stationary gorge. I don't think we will ever see his removal though.

    Also with the latest patch they are gutting another core mechanic of NS1. Aliens having 3 hives and them forced to expand. They are turning the aliens into the marine team with a single base tech path. Multiple hives will only net them more spawns and more hive power just like marines and we all see what marines do... turtle. I do not know how this will work out and i will test it with all the optimism i can muster because i hope it works. As stated above, we are way to close to release to be changing so major a part of what made NS1 great.

    But as NS2HD has said there have been posts like these dating back to the alpha. They are stuck on a design course that sacrifices gameplay for visuals and immersion. One lasts for years, the other wears off after a couple of hours. We will see if they were right in the end and i TRULY hope they are because i have NS2c to look forward to know and hole a small ember of hope NS2 come out polished and shining come the end of Summer.
  • SideOfBeefSideOfBeef Join Date: 2012-03-04 Member: 148064Posts: 41Members
    edited April 2012
    QUOTE (RisingSun @ Apr 19 2012, 12:16 AM) »
    The devs are too entrenched now to ever go back on any of their major design decisions.


    QUOTE (RisingSun @ Apr 19 2012, 12:16 AM) »
    They are stuck on a design course that sacrifices gameplay for visuals and immersion.


    These seem to sum up peoples major fears with the game, but nobody has actually provided any evidence (or even a justification) for either of them. If infestation "hurts" gameplay, explain how. If the current power system "limits" gameplay, explain how, then explain why that particular limitation is bad. Maybe you think the answers are obvious, but that assumption is poisonous to any useful discussion.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • RisingSunRisingSun Rising Join Date: 2004-04-19 Member: 28015Posts: 892Members, Constellation, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow
    edited April 2012
    QUOTE (SideOfBeef @ Apr 19 2012, 05:30 AM) »
    These seem to sum up peoples major fears with the game, but nobody has actually provided any evidence (or even a justification) for either of them. Maybe you think the answers are obvious, but that assumption is poisonous to any useful discussion.


    I only say what i say because my stance on these elements have been posted all throughout the forums over the years and i didnt want to rehash it all here. It wont change things because it didnt 15 or more posts ago. To sum things that i am talking about quickly without explanation: Power Nodes (glorified light switches), Infestation (Zerg rip off), and Bunny Hopping (prepare for locked thread). Those are SOME of the main gripes but there are much more. Just didnt want people picking out specific grievances to derail the thread (it can happen with any of those mentioned).
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • SideOfBeefSideOfBeef Join Date: 2012-03-04 Member: 148064Posts: 41Members
    edited April 2012
    QUOTE (RisingSun @ Apr 19 2012, 12:38 AM) »
    I only say what i say because my stance on these elements have been posted all throughout the forums over the years and i didnt want to rehash it all here. It wont change things because it didnt 15 or more posts ago. To sum things that i am talking about quickly without explanation: Power Nodes (glorified light switches), Infestation (Zerg rip off), and Bunny Hopping (prepare for locked thread). Those are SOME of the main gripes but there are much more. Just didnt want people picking out specific grievances to derail the thread (it can happen with any of those mentioned).


    So controlled lighting, explain why it's a bad mechanic. Infestation, explain why it's a bad mechanic (works nicely in starcraft). Bunnyhopping, explain why it's a bad mechanic (or a good one, whatever). If these topics are so contentious that you fear they'll derail the thread, then how can you be so sure that you're definitely right and they're definitely bad? Maybe they aren't. Maybe the game changed for a reason.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • RisingSunRisingSun Rising Join Date: 2004-04-19 Member: 28015Posts: 892Members, Constellation, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow
    QUOTE (SideOfBeef @ Apr 19 2012, 05:46 AM) »
    So controlled lighting, explain why it's a bad mechanic. Infestation, explain why it's a bad mechanic (works nicely in starcraft). Bunnyhopping, explain why it's a bad mechanic (or a good one, whatever). If these topics are so contentious that you fear they'll derail the thread, then how can you be so sure that you're definitely right and they're definitely bad? Maybe they aren't. Maybe the game changed for a reason.


    You got me... Maybe, just mayyybe.

    If you want answers to your questions use the "Search" function =)
  • _Necro__Necro_ Join Date: 2011-02-15 Member: 81895Posts: 1,903Members, Reinforced - Shadow
    I'm all with Drakennz. I can understand the criticism of the OP about the feeling of linear gameplay lacking the freedom of NS1, but the overall opinion of "make it like NS1" between the lines of his whole post is simply the opinion of a backward looking minority.

    In addition the post lacks constructive criticism. How could we obtain the tactical freedom of NS1 (or just more freedom) without the cheap "make it like NS1". Without the cheap "scrap this feature". Something with actual thinking involved. An idea that keeps power nodes and infestation in the game, but tweaks it so we got more tactical freedom.

    Without this constructive part it only sounds like: "But I want my old NS1 with fancy graphics. And I don't want it to be a mod, so everyone has to play it with me."

    NS1 is dead for a reason. It was a really good game at its time, but also had some problems. If not, it would be played until today with more than a hand full servers per country. Time goes on. You can't come up with the same game again.
  • RisingSunRisingSun Rising Join Date: 2004-04-19 Member: 28015Posts: 892Members, Constellation, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow
    edited April 2012
    QUOTE (_Necro_ @ Apr 19 2012, 09:08 AM) »
    I'm all with Drakennz. I can understand the criticism of the OP about the feeling of linear gameplay lacking the freedom of NS1, but the overall opinion of "make it like NS1" between the lines of his whole post is simply the opinion of a backward looking minority.

    In addition the post lacks constructive criticism. How could we obtain the tactical freedom of NS1 (or just more freedom) without the cheap "make it like NS1". Without the cheap "scrap this feature". Something with actual thinking involved. An idea that keeps power nodes and infestation in the game, but tweaks it so we got more tactical freedom.

    Without this constructive part it only sounds like: "But I want my old NS1 with fancy graphics. And I don't want it to be a mod, so everyone has to play it with me."

    NS1 is dead for a reason. It was a really good game at its time, but also had some problems. If not, it would be played until today with more than a hand full servers per country. Time goes on. You can't come up with the same game again.


    Please explain to me why power nodesare needed. Take away the pretty lights that supposedly add "tension" and "atmosphere". What are there purpose other then an extra step to building. Keep in mind that they are all but ignored by experienced players except for in marine start which is a sorry attempt to remove turtling.

    Sorry to break it to you Necro but everyone on these forums are the loud minority. Calling those who want awful features (in our opinion) removed and have what worked reinstated backwards is incorrect. We want the CORE of what made NS1 work to remain the same. NS2 has torn out a stone foundation to replace it with new plastic. Only time will tell if it holds up.

    DI - a cool idea but the cyst chain is a horrible mechanic. In SC2, creep is spread to give your units a tactical advantage and to build on. Except your income is safely tucked into the womb of you base and the maps are designed to facilitate this. Imagine if one unit could destroy one creep bubble to cut off the third expansion. I have been watching a lot of high level matches and the creep bubbles are all but ignored. In NS2 they are vital for not only lifeform advantage but economy, forward structures, scouting, and area denial. DI needs to play less of a roll in alien gameplay like it does in SC2. Or if they are so damn important, stealth them, and have the marines work to find them.

    Im still not happy with wall hopping as a bhopp substitute.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • TremanNTremanN Join Date: 2002-11-13 Member: 8471Posts: 96Members
    The point of power nodes and and DI is to create a territorial front line. It's a clear indication of which team controls an area. The implementation is rough or nonexistent at this point but I'm sure massive changes will come. UWE is not afraid to try new things, Khamm and alien tech tree being reworked are proof of this.

    I don't know what you think the "guts" are of NS, but I feel the spirit of NS1 is present in NS2.

    Asymmetrical, team-based FPS with an RTS connecting everything together.
  • YuukiYuuki Join Date: 2010-11-20 Member: 75079Posts: 1,731Members
    Here is a bunch of quotes from the forum, explaining some of the problems and proposing a solution. This could be 20 pages long.

    Infestation

    The alien team has an incredible advantage in speed of lifeforms, and yet their entire economy requires structures that grant them instant minimap and wallhack vision. Therefore, the alien team doesn't really have to commit many troops or resources to scouting or defending - by virtue of placing structures, they already exude a strong area of control without the presence of any players, and as soon as marines are detected they can redirect forces to secure the area. This is incredibly important, as it frees up the entire team to play offensively or respond to incoming threats.

    Infestation doesn't look very promising from a gameplay perspective either. Because maps are mostly comprised of narrow hallways, I sincerely doubt that the whole "network" theme is going to work in a way that adds depth. I don't even like the idea of infestation giving aliens an advantage. If aliens gain an advantage on infestation, it means they'll have to be that much weaker when they're not on infestation. Given that aliens already excel at defense by nature (and have trouble finishing games because of this), it doesn't seem like a good idea. However, I'm optimistic about the visuals and I'd like to see then remain in the game.

    Infestation is one of the major reasons why Aliens win nearly all of the matches. Once the Aliens established a decent foothold in the map they will be able to see where the Marines are attacking from, how many there are, and if they have brought any Arcs. A relatively organized Kharaa team, with the ability to move through the small maps quickly (I can only assume that with the Movement chamber hive it will only get worse, especially if players can shift through hives), can halt an assault before any serious damage is inflicted. A last ditch effort of a Ninja phase gate is impossible for various reasons. To have a successful ninja phase gate, the marine must destroy many cysts, spend time building a power node, then build a phase gate (which is much easier to grind compared to NS1).

    As an alien, I am totally constrained by where I can lay infestation. No longer can I implement different strategies that are high-risk, high-reward. There's at most, in every map, two options of which nodes i'm going to spread to. I can't do anything very interesting or dynamic with infestation. It's just a permanent creep outwards with the odd clever placement of a cyst (whoopdedoo). For these reasons, I am more inclined to align myself with the automated infestation creep you suggest, but I would make it entirely non-functional - a mere aesthetic that retains the developers' godforsaken atmospheric goals.

    The movement handicap for marines is silly too because at no point am I ever on it as a marine and thinking: "Gee, well done Kham! That was a good strategic decision that has gleaned you some advantage over me". It's just a bunch of crap on the floor that gets spammed and makes it that little bit more annoying to be around which is a real shame. I want to be outwitted and outplayed and it does neither, but I digress!

    - The biggest problem with ninjaPGs currently is infestation spotting marines tbh, not power nodes.
    - Agree. Personally I think infestation hive sight should be something that needs to be upgraded to work, It is too big of an advantage.

    A solution for hive sight on infestation:

    A "Scan" ability that works differently than Observatory, in that this ability relies on Cysts. Imagine sending a pulse through the system which reveals any enemies on infestation maintained by Cysts, which is exactly like the infestation Hive Sight we have now, only that it is progressive (emits from Shade to where you click, travels along the Cyst chain).
    A wave propagating through the infestation, it should emit a sound (some kind of creepy scream maybe) so that marines can hear it and try to get off the infestation before the wave hit them. It could be very funny to see marines sprint is all direction, jump onto boxes to avoid to be detected.


    Power

    The problem is not only ninja phase gates, it wastes players time and limits marine placements. Also makes the game harder to balance. You can already see this in competitive play, marines build the power nodes but aliens never bite them down. The only place the power is ever taken down is marine start.

    Quite a few places on various maps also seem to be "bugged" in that even though you have all of the nearby power nodes build, you can't built any structures in the area regardless. the one place that comes to mind for me is the area in the east outside of elevator transfer on Tram.

    Both the power-grid and infestation system handicap variety right from the outset. Not only do they add a great deal of complexity to the game (there's alot of irony behind their complaints about NS1's learning curve and the introduction of damage types and grid/infestation, no?), but they limit strategy. There needs to be a return to the ethos of simple rules that generate interesting depth. NS2 has actually introduced far more rules and regulations than NS1 and this is really suffocating depth and, at the same time, making things hard to understand.

    In the last scrims we did the aliens totally ignored the power. The marines also so they forgot to build it sometimes (so they get a rt without power), the phase gates were sometimes build just in time but underpowered, the casters didn't knew if an obs was powered or not. In turtle test the discussion was always like "this seems a good place for a phase gate, but wait where is the power ? What power this area ?", etc.

    But I agree with you when u say the current system is hurting gameplay. Its boring to chew as aliens, and now when it only takes a few seconds as marines to build them, biting on them as aliens are a waste of time. And briging back PP to remey the issue of ninja PG? Well...

    Power nodes are annoying to find and build as marines/ annoying to kill as aliens. Just because the lights are off doesnt mean it is alien controlled, it just means some lone skulk took too much time chewing on something that can be brought back in a manner of seconds. It costs no res to build them or repair them once destroyed. Waste of time and unneeded. The only time they become important is in Marine base, which knocks out lights, spawning, beacon, upgrades, and weapons/ammo. WAY to powerful. I dont see being able to knock out 2 cysts in the Alien start to disable everything, why MS then?

    The power-grid system was supposed to shift the value of rooms based on the configuration of marine territory, but it never achieved this in any iteration. Flayra has said he still likes the "dramatic effect", and I think that's the only real reason it's still in the game. Honestly I don't even think the visual aspect is worth keeping. Powered-down rooms look pretty bad. I'd like to see it removed altogether.

    Powergrid NO
    - marines and aliens end up 'owning' rooms they don't even occupy
    - infestation is much better at this anyway
    - light/dark gameplay sucks
    - the extra option is often a false choice
    - the extra option can cheaply end the whole game
    - marines have to defend the powernode - promotes caution and turtling
    - building/repairing power is boring
    - biting power is even more boring
    - biting/building power comes before or after biting/building resource towers anyway
    - the powergrid system forces the same rooms to be used every game
    - power makes covert pgs and covert strategies in general even harder
    - emphasis is taken away from rooms strategic importance eg. proximity, geometry
    - I don't like it
    - we've spent thousands of man hours trying to fix it
    - there's no silver bullet answer so bring on more features!

    Lighting is a very important part of creating a beautiful map and while it is possible to make a good looking scenery using only one color, a dimly red lit room will hardly ever look very beautiful compared to what mappers can achieve with proper lighting. Not to mention how monotonous and boring it is to see the same lighting in each room half of the time while playing NS2.

    A solution :

    1) The comm can drop lights. There is already some props of large spot lights so it would not require a lot of work. It will replace a static light system by something much more dynamic, the comm has to think where to build the lights: more freedom, people like freedom. The lights can be attacked and destroyed, so you would get this cinematic effect of lights going down. It would also allow mappers to have some dark area in the map since it can be countered.
    Dynamic lighting in the engine, dynamic lights in the game; make sense.

    2) Rename the power pack to "sentry power system", it will power the turrets only. Destroying it disable the sentries. It allows to have a weak point in turret spammed area. It also allow the comm to choose a good spot for the "sentry power system" instead of having a fixed position on the map.

    3) Use building loss of power animation to show when a building get recycled.

    4) Remove power nodes since they are no longer needed.

    It's a nice solution because it requires (relatively) little work and recycle most of what has already been done: no good work gets wasted. By splitting the different function of power nodes (lights, turret factory, base destroyer, ..) it also facilitate balance.
  • RisingSunRisingSun Rising Join Date: 2004-04-19 Member: 28015Posts: 892Members, Constellation, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow
    edited April 2012
    QUOTE (TremanN @ Apr 19 2012, 10:11 AM) »
    The point of power nodes and and DI is to create a territorial front line. It's a clear indication of which team controls an area. The implementation is rough or nonexistent at this point but I'm sure massive changes will come. UWE is not afraid to try new things, Khamm and alien tech tree being reworked are proof of this.

    I don't know what you think the "guts" are of NS, but I feel the spirit of NS1 is present in NS2.

    Asymmetrical, team-based FPS with an RTS connecting everything together.


    Territory could be visually defined much better and marines have no need for a distinction. No DI = either potential marine territory or marine territory. No need for further clarification. Aliens are the invaders and must spread to dominate.

    I like the fact the UWE tries new things but as it says a couole posts up we are 3 months away from release and we are still getting "new things".

    Where does the asemmetry come in? Both teams require taking of the territory to expand, both teams now only require one base, expanding only nets more energy and spawning, both have pres and tres, and both have a commander. The only thing asymmetrical now is what was there to begin with, ranged vs melee.

    The guts of NS1 are tough to tap out on this infernal touch pad, ill revist it.

    *edit- Thanks Yuuki. Good post.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • _Necro__Necro_ Join Date: 2011-02-15 Member: 81895Posts: 1,903Members, Reinforced - Shadow
    QUOTE (RisingSun @ Apr 19 2012, 11:01 AM) »
    Please explain to me why power nodesare needed. Take away the pretty lights that supposedly add "tension" and "atmosphere". What are there purpose other then an extra step to building. Keep in mind that they are all but ignored by experienced players except for in marine start which is a sorry attempt to remove turtling.

    You see? That is your problem. You aren't able to be creative. No one says, that the power nodes are perfect in its current state. But instead of comming up with tweaks to make them actual fun and useful, you only wont them cut. Thats really the best you can come up with? Look what drifters have become. Simply cutting a feature is the baddest idea you can have. And your argument, that they add nothing is generic. The fade adds nothing too, so why not scrap the fade? We got a skulk for strong melee combat...
    Thats just very short sighted. The power points are adding a new layer of tactical depth. If the mechanic how they work is tweaked right, they will be fun. i.e. make ips powered through the CC or even give the CC a power-radius building everything near the CC and the building won't lose its power when the node goes down. But in exchange you make them more vulnerable to one single lerk, bilebombing all of them at once. etc. etc. This is creative and constructive. Just saying they add nothing, does help no one and sounds like QQ.
    QUOTE (RisingSun @ Apr 19 2012, 11:01 AM) »
    Sorry to break it to you Necro but everyone on these forums are the loud minority. Calling those who want awful features (in our opinion) removed and have what worked reinstated backwards is incorrect. We want the CORE of what made NS1 work to remain the same. NS2 has torn out a stone foundation to replace it with new plastic. Only time will tell if it holds up.

    You are right, that this forum only represents a minority. But beside this, an conservative opinion that only looks back at thing how they were and can't come up with anything new, will never lead to something better.
    QUOTE (RisingSun @ Apr 19 2012, 11:01 AM) »
    DI - a cool idea but the cyst chain is a horrible mechanic. In SC2, creep is spread to give your units a tactical advantage and to build on. Except your income is safely tucked into the womb of you base and the maps are designed to facilitate this. Imagine if one unit could destroy one creep bubble to cut off the third expansion. I have been watching a lot of high level matches and the creep bubbles are all but ignored. In NS2 they are vital for not only lifeform advantage but economy, forward structures, scouting, and area denial. DI needs to play less of a roll in alien gameplay like it does in SC2. Or if they are so damn important, stealth them, and have the marines work to find them.

    Im still not happy with wall hopping as a bhopp substitute.


    And again you managed it to come up with nothing. Not a single creative or constructive thought. Just stomping your foot on the ground and crying about what is wrong. Telling the devs, that their ideas are bs but you can't come up with something new or better. That's it, what I'm pillorying.
  • ZeikkoZeikko Join Date: 2007-12-16 Member: 63179Posts: 585Members, Squad Five Blue, NS2 Map Tester
    Thanks for writing this down Yuuki. It highlights many of the issues of the current infestation and powergrid systems. From all of those issues i would like to highlight the infestation wallhack and the ambiguity of the powergrid locations.

    The infestation wallhack is terrible game mechanic and make marines unable to perform any kind of surprising moves. It's boring for both sides. Playing alien feels utterly boring because you can constantly see what the enemy is doing and can adjust your tactics perfectly to counter that. Once you learn what you have to do in certain situation the game loses all of its appeal because you know all the time what the current situation is without any scouting.

    With the ambiguity of the powergrid i mean the fact that the players can't see the edges of each power grid location. It is not a huge problem yet because there aren't many maps yet and they have been introduced one by one giving players plenty of time to learn them. But imagine someone having to learn the power locations of 10 new maps. The only way to learn these is to put cheats on and drop buildings everywhere and put the power up & down or open the map editor. Countless of hours wasted on finding out something that the game UI should display to you.
  • TremanNTremanN Join Date: 2002-11-13 Member: 8471Posts: 96Members
    QUOTE
    Aliens are the invaders...


    That's a matter of perspective.

    With the 18 seconds of darkness, power nodes become a much more strategic entity than they were in previous patches.

    The recent patch rework is mostly a balance patch, not a content patch. The only truly new things that we have left to see that are announced are the gorges structures, shift, and exo suit. I have a feeling these things aren't very far off. Even if they are a ways away, I'd rather UWE take some more time than to rush to release. Technically, it's 5 months away from the last day of the release window.

    The two teams play completely different. I don't know how else to explain how the teams are asymmetrical to someone that has played the game.

  • RisingSunRisingSun Rising Join Date: 2004-04-19 Member: 28015Posts: 892Members, Constellation, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow
    edited April 2012
    QUOTE (_Necro_ @ Apr 19 2012, 10:30 AM) »
    You see? That is your problem. You aren't able to be creative. No one says, that the power nodes are perfect in its current state. But instead of comming up with tweaks to make them actual fun and useful, you only wont them cut. Thats really the best you can come up with? Look what drifters have become. Simply cutting a feature is the baddest idea you can have. And your argument, that they add nothing is generic. The fade adds nothing too, so why not scrap the fade? We got a skulk for strong melee combat...
    Thats just very short sighted. The power points are adding a new layer of tactical depth. If the mechanic how they work is tweaked right, they will be fun. i.e. make ips powered through the CC or even give the CC a power-radius building everything near the CC and the building won't lose its power when the node goes down. But in exchange you make them more vulnerable to one single lerk, bilebombing all of them at once. etc. etc. This is creative and constructive. Just saying they add nothing, does help no one and sounds like QQ.

    You are right, that this forum only represents a minority. But beside this, an conservative opinion that only looks back at thing how they were and can't come up with anything new, will never lead to something better.


    And again you managed it to come up with nothing. Not a single creative or constructive thought. Just stomping your foot on the ground and crying about what is wrong. Telling the devs, that their ideas are bs but you can't come up with something new or better. That's it, what I'm pillorying.


    I have tried to suggest things like with cysts to stealth them or (something new) only make them susceptible to flame and arcs.

    But all in all just because it is new doesnt make it better. Your fade arguement is so horribly flawed.i wont go into it. I understand what you are saying playing the fan boi roll and me the negative vet (vet being used loosely), but it all comes down to i had more fun in NS1 and they seem to have added things just because of the visual effects and have ignored gameplay.

    But all this is opinion based. You dont agree, great! But you need to come up with more the "it's new" to keep a feature. What does it add to the game and woukd the game miss it if it was gone (redundent).

    @Tre - Ill say it now so i can quote it later. The 18 seconds wont see release before being changed. That is way to long to have marine start without power in case of a base rush and will be a game ender. It also doesnt solve that they arent needed. So you black out an unguarded rt room for 18 secs... so what? It is still an extra layer that isnt needed and not intuitive.

    As for perspective it isnt. Aliens need to spread DI to control a map. There is no DI anywhere but the hive room, so that means they have to invade the area to dominate. Marines are responding to push them out.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • TremanNTremanN Join Date: 2002-11-13 Member: 8471Posts: 96Members
    The wallhack on infestation is a little ridiculous. Even if you kill a cyst breaking the chain, you will STILL be seen on infestation. I like the idea of infestation granting certain abilities based on either crag/shift/shade. For example, slight health regeneration on crag infestation, slightly faster adrenaline regeneration on shift infestation, and a type of hive sight on shade infestation.

    Scouting is huge part of an RTS. Scouting shouldn't be as easy as infestation and teams/players SHOULD be punished for not knowing what the other team is doing.
  • XariusXarius Join Date: 2003-12-21 Member: 24630Posts: 2,186Members
    edited April 2012
    I agree with criticism voiced here in regards to power nodes and infestation, though I disagree with the conclusion of many that it's these mechanics that somehow ruin NS2 gameplay and make it worse than NS 1. I really hate hive sight, I honestly think most players are against it at this point, I agree power nodes feel redundant, etc etc etc. But I think we need to remember that both these mechanics are still WIP and subject to changes, and with some big changes they can become quite fun and novel additions to gameplay.

    I too came from NS 1 and was a little disappointed at first, in particular with the path they've taken with the alien commander. My NS1 nostalgia really wanted to see the gorge-central gameplay remain intact, though I must confess that over time I came to accept the changes that were made and decided I'd spend my energy on constructive feedback instead. (I.e instead of complaining about the alien commander, I sat down and provided some ideas to make it better, as was done in the 'why aliens dominate' thread which was to my surprise quickly picked up by the developers)

    Anyway, what I'm getting at is this; I think many more Ns1 veterans will be arriving in ns2 and feel disappointed at first, with mechanic X or Y that is a significant change from NS 2. Though over time I'm sure most will grow to accept these changes, and accept NS 2 as the novel sequel it truly is turning out to be. I'm not saying it'll be perfect at launch, heck some of these mechanics that feel a little iffy and pointless (power nodes in particular come to mind) may last well past release, but I'm confident eventually with enough constructive feedback provided they will ultimately become a mechanic that we wouldn't want to do without.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
    Steamname: Unkn0wn
  • 1dominator11dominator1 Join Date: 2010-11-19 Member: 75011Posts: 1,136Members
    I do think untying aliens buildings from inf is a good idea, mostly the current implementation slows down alien expo to an absurdly slow rate (especially now that you cant expo while doing other things) and they are supposed to be the omnipresent map-control race. The power grid is really not that big of a hindrance considering you can still build in any room as long as you repair the power node (this is hardly difficult and the things are pretty damn hard to kill). Especially now that power packs are in the game.

    As for being able to build comm chairs anywhere you want, this is all well and good but in my (albeit limited) ns experience the place of relocation 90% of the time would be one of the hive rooms and that remains perfectly possible. The fact of the matter is that NS2 is not NS1 and the devs should not be limiting themselves to what worked in the previous game. I think both infestation and power have the potential to add much to the game in terms of both atmosphere and strategy and should not be dismissed just because they have not been perfected yet. Besides I am sure there will be a NS1 mod like a month of two after 1.0
  • TweadleTweadle Join Date: 2005-02-03 Member: 39686Posts: 854Members, NS2 Map Tester
    edited April 2012
    It's quite amazing because I still need two hands to count the problems behind power and infestation (yuuki covers many of them) and I think it's fair to say that the community has tried really really really hard to think of solutions. This is not some silly vocal minority, as you dismissively say NS2HD, but a serious contingent of NS2 players who have tried to find answers and failed. Nor should it be viewed as some tired, old qualm with the game. When something has cropped up this many times and has seen support from all different quarters, public/competitive/ns1/ns2, then it should be regarded as, at the very least, something serious that needs addressing. That so many people have argued for the removal of power is not always as a result of negative thinking, but rather a reasonable conclusion after weighing up the benefits and the drawbacks.

    For example, regarding power:

    If I listed out all the issues, we could maybe find an answer to some of them. We could introduce the clunky and previously-disowned power packs (disowned for a reason) to allow for sneaky phasegates. We could spend considerable time demarcating the power-grid areas for marines to avoid having to spend hours testing them in private. We could confusingly unchain power to certain structures like IPs etc. to stop base vulnerability. We could grant power-nodes different functionality to make them feel less like redundant light switches beyond the base. We could tinker with power-node and resource-tower health to make it less achingly mundane to bite them both down. We could then electrify stuff to make power-nodes less susceptible to totally lone skulks. We could add ~18 seconds of no-build time to recently destroyed power to avoid the embarrassing build-it-faster-than-you-repair-it syndrome. We could add <feature x, y, z> to solve <problem a, b, c, d, e, f, g...> and so on.

    There are a variety of answers to each not-so-little problem but almost every single one of them that I have listened to have included more confusing rules, new features and/or quick-fixes that pose further problems. Some problems don't even seem to have solutions. I don't see there ever being a solution to the forced denial of various potential strategies as a result of restricting structure placements, one of the saddest side-effects of power and infestation.

    At this stage, I personally feel like the lack of answers is indicative of there not being any good ones, not of a lack of creativity or trying from the community and UWE.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • RisingSunRisingSun Rising Join Date: 2004-04-19 Member: 28015Posts: 892Members, Constellation, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow
    Nicely put Tweadle.

    And just to clear up my stance on things. I hate power nodes and want them gone. I like DI but want it implemented better. Cysts need work and imo hives and rts should spread DI (rts shouldnt require DI).
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