The game is too balanced

VetinariVetinari Join Date: 2013-07-23 Member: 186325Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Silver Posts: 3,447 Advanced user
We haven't had a balance thread in a while, sooo...

No, but seriously. It seems like every second game that's not a stack ends as a 35+ min stalemate nowadays. And I'm not even talking about turtles here; but proper stalemates, where neither side can gain an upper hand.

Are we lacking a deus ex machina (or deus ex bacteria, for aliens)?
What's your opinion on this?
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  • NordicNordic Long term camping in Kodiak Join Date: 2012-05-13 Member: 151995Members, NS2 Playtester, NS2 Map Tester, Reinforced - Supporter, Reinforced - Silver, Reinforced - Shadow Posts: 4,676 Advanced user
    Performance > balance at this point. Performance isn't getting better or so I am told. QOL features are coming in from ns2+ and others. I am happy with balance.
    From my perspective UWE has been trying to both with what little resources they have given to the game. They don't have an AAA budget, let alone an indie game budget. They have the budget of a game that has been out 6 years. I want to say, don't half ass two things, whole ass one thing. I just don't think they have the resources to do it. Unlike many of the people on the forums, I guess I am just happy they are at least trying even though I may not like what they end up doing.
    BeigeAlertd4rkAlf
  • RaZDaZRaZDaZ Join Date: 2012-11-05 Member: 167331Members, Reinforced - Shadow Posts: 465 Fully active user
    edited May 2014
    Game doesn't have deteriorating resources. If you look at a typical economy driven game like an RTS such as Starcraft or even Dawn of War, resources reduce over time thus, although it doesn't reach this stage most of the time, it puts a clock on players. This is a minor reason but its still a concept that holds validity when regarding long stalemate games.

    Regarding teams that are well balanced, these are very rare imo but certainly a lot more fun than average games, some of my most memorable moments in NS2 have been commanding games that exceeded 2hours long. Marines generally don't have a real power ability that can close a game out like aliens do with xenocide on typical pub servers and if the teams are balanced, marines usually have a lockdown or strategy to prevent xeno from appearing. SC2 has economy advantage, you can willingly trade cost inefficiently because every unit you kill costs resources so eventually you whittle them down but in NS2, even a wave of basic skulks and rifle marines can force back a high teched team, rarely happens but it can happen.

    However, competitive games don't last too long usually. We see games typically over by the 30 minute mark and it's usually a team hoping for a big play to claw their way back in, its like watching a player who's ahead in SC2 get more ahead until the opponent is starved out or an opponent that fights to their last breath.

    Overall, very pleased with the current balance of NS2 it's still kinda balanced at crazy server counts like Wooza's 42 man, aliens and marines have a close winrate even when the server is performing fine. While I would like some additional content, new weapons, etc, I can definitely see why people don't want that and I'm still enjoying the game immensely.

    I'd rather have a game that is too balanced than imbalanced so I don't think there's a reason to look into it.
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  • NordicNordic Long term camping in Kodiak Join Date: 2012-05-13 Member: 151995Members, NS2 Playtester, NS2 Map Tester, Reinforced - Supporter, Reinforced - Silver, Reinforced - Shadow Posts: 4,676 Advanced user
    RaZDaZ wrote: »
    Marines generally don't have a real power ability that can close a game out like aliens do with xenocide on typical pub servers and if the teams are balanced, marines usually have a lockdown or strategy to prevent xeno from appearing

    Marines aren't the ones who usually have trouble finishing a game though. Aliens can't really turtle well.
    From my perspective UWE has been trying to both with what little resources they have given to the game. They don't have an AAA budget, let alone an indie game budget. They have the budget of a game that has been out 6 years. I want to say, don't half ass two things, whole ass one thing. I just don't think they have the resources to do it. Unlike many of the people on the forums, I guess I am just happy they are at least trying even though I may not like what they end up doing.
  • RapGodRapGod Not entirely sure... Join Date: 2013-11-12 Member: 189322Members Posts: 799 Fully active user
    I like longer games... but after 45min of commanding, you start to lose your mind or have things to do.
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  • RaZDaZRaZDaZ Join Date: 2012-11-05 Member: 167331Members, Reinforced - Shadow Posts: 465 Fully active user
    edited May 2014
    james888 wrote: »
    RaZDaZ wrote: »
    Marines generally don't have a real power ability that can close a game out like aliens do with xenocide on typical pub servers and if the teams are balanced, marines usually have a lockdown or strategy to prevent xeno from appearing

    Marines aren't the ones who usually have trouble finishing a game though. Aliens can't really turtle well.

    In the mid game before (jets) they tend to have a problem but it isn't usually against one hive though, if marines focus their attention on one hive and ignore the other we tend to see base trades which is why stalemates occur. This is further escalated when its difficult to push a hive with ARCs that don't have avenues where gorges can hit them easily. Docking is a map that comes to mind where stalemates occur, difficult hives to ARC and use jetpacks in, minus generator.

    Aliens don't turtle on 2base, they're always rushing where marines are not. Just an example, I commanded a 2h 30min game on summit as alien comm and we traded bases at least 10 times with marines.
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  • CyberKunCyberKun Join Date: 2013-02-02 Member: 182733Members, Reinforced - Shadow Posts: 336 Fully active user
    Make Contaminate or whatever the teir 9 Biomass thing is do a massive amount of building damage while disabling any Arc it hits. Triple the duration and give it a 30 second cooldown. Bam, Aliens have some way push into a turtling base that is under the commanders control.
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  • [email protected]N@uralBornNoobist Gorge-N-Freeman,2Gorges1Clog Join Date: 2012-12-24 Member: 176138Members Posts: 121 Advanced user
    edited May 2014
    more encouragement for lower player count servers? less players=better overall xperience...for the less well endowed hardware fanatics. 6v6,7v7,8v8....THE LAW?
  • VetinariVetinari Join Date: 2013-07-23 Member: 186325Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Silver Posts: 3,447 Advanced user
    BeigeAlert wrote: »
    We haven't had a balance thread in a while, sooo...

    No, but seriously. It seems like every second game that's not a stack ends as a 35+ min stalemate nowadays. And I'm not even talking about turtles here; but proper stalemates, where neither side can gain an upper hand.

    Are we lacking a deus ex machina (or deus ex bacteria, for aliens)?
    What's your opinion on this?

    I like the long games! I don't like it when the match is over in 60 seconds because of a skulk rush.

    Yeah, but I'm talking about those games where you have been sitting on max tech for 20 minutes now and there's no real back and forth, not even base trades, and everyone is just craving to get a new, fresh game starting. I've had a few of those the last days.
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  • moultanomoultano Creator of ns_shiva. Join Date: 2002-12-14 Member: 10806Members, NS1 Playtester, Contributor, Constellation, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Gold, NS2 Community Developer, Pistachionauts Posts: 4,209 Advanced user
    Yeah, but I'm talking about those games where you have been sitting on max tech for 20 minutes now and there's no real back and forth, not even base trades, and everyone is just craving to get a new, fresh game starting. I've had a few of those the last days.

    Base trades are easy to force, just beacon your team, load up gls and jps, and go to town.
    coolitic
  • BensonBenson Join Date: 2012-03-07 Member: 148303Members, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow Posts: 1,296 Advanced user
    Agreed, balanced teams make very balanced games.

    Now...once that improved skill system gets put in place we can have balanced teams more often!
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  • ns2isgoodns2isgood Join Date: 2013-04-16 Member: 184847Members Posts: 323 Fully active user
    lol, too balanced? come on, did you watch the WC? the marines won every round besides the 1 time the aliens used the tactic of an early base rush. i don't think you can find anything better to give you an idea of balance, unless we want to refer to the infamous "50/50" win rates.

    i always found the mention of the 50/50 win rates incredibly stupid. guess what happens after one side wins a match? they switch to the other team the next round, lol. you see it all the time in pub games, especially when people are stacking teams.
    kmgAnzestral
  • VetinariVetinari Join Date: 2013-07-23 Member: 186325Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Silver Posts: 3,447 Advanced user
    ns2isgood wrote: »
    lol, too balanced? come on, did you watch the WC? the marines won every round besides the 1 time the aliens used the tactic of an early base rush. i don't think you can find anything better to give you an idea of balance, unless we want to refer to the infamous "50/50" win rates.

    I guess that had nothing to do with the fact that they were playing with virtually zero lag, thus giving marines a huge advantage with tracking?
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  • DestherDesther Join Date: 2012-10-31 Member: 165195Members Posts: 518 Fully active user
    Do you play 6v6 with the same sets of players or play random pub games?

    Maybe check your hive stats because I never see stalemate pub games and my average game length over the last 20 matches is 15mins.
  • CalegoCalego Join Date: 2013-01-24 Member: 181848Members, NS2 Map Tester Posts: 763 Advanced user
    I've noticed that not many people are complaining about balance overall, it seems to be map based now. Different maps are apparently sided to one or the other team.

    I think the game itself has hit a decent point as far as balance goes. It would be nice to see stats like win rates in Hive, rather than individual player "skill". NS2Stats' sample seems to think it's alien sided atm.

    I think this is a good thing. Players just need to be better at ending the game. I'm of the opinion that any turtle can be broken with a couple of gorges and a well coordinated push, or else ARCs.
  • VetinariVetinari Join Date: 2013-07-23 Member: 186325Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Silver Posts: 3,447 Advanced user
    Desther wrote: »
    Do you play 6v6 with the same sets of players or play random pub games?

    Maybe check your hive stats because I never see stalemate pub games and my average game length over the last 20 matches is 15mins.

    Pub games exclusively
    Calego wrote: »
    I've noticed that not many people are complaining about balance overall, it seems to be map based now. Different maps are apparently sided to one or the other team.

    I think the game itself has hit a decent point as far as balance goes. It would be nice to see stats like win rates in Hive, rather than individual player "skill". NS2Stats' sample seems to think it's alien sided atm.

    I think this is a good thing. Players just need to be better at ending the game. I'm of the opinion that any turtle can be broken with a couple of gorges and a well coordinated push, or else ARCs.

    Just to clarify, I'm not actually complaining about balance. We seem to have reached a state of balance which drags even games out forever - and it's those stalemates I'm, well, complaining about. (Not really complaining. It's more like an observation, but the point still stands.)
    formerly known as F0rdPrefect

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  • MuckyMcFlyMuckyMcFly Join Date: 2012-03-19 Member: 148982Members, Reinforced - Supporter, Reinforced - Shadow Posts: 616 Fully active user
    Performance and balance seem great for me at the moment, still my favorite game at the moment. ;)


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  • meatmachinemeatmachine South England Join Date: 2013-01-06 Member: 177858Members, NS2 Playtester, NS2 Map Tester, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Supporter Posts: 1,551 Advanced user
    Lol, people are complaining about the epic back-and-forth games that this game is so well-known for?

    "TOO balanced"??

    At face value, I'd say that's ridiculous as balance is a marines-alien see-saw and giving one team an advantage would obviously crap all over the face of what this game stands for.

    However reading into it, I could assume you mean "time-dependant tech advantages (of which there are several throughout the game, like mines, lifeforms, W/A ups, babblers) are not strong enough to have a significant impact on the overall flow of the game"
    OR even
    "some tech isnt strong enough to end the game when one team has a significant advantage"

    For the first assumed argument, I disagree and would like to point out that players still need to organise and push well-defined objectives ( X rt, X upgrade structure, marines' AA etc) in order for the tech to mean anything.

    For the second point I would like to point out that alien contamination + crags + whips is a really nasty game ender, and also for marines, well... Exos should be strong and unbeaconable again ^_^
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  • RaZDaZRaZDaZ Join Date: 2012-11-05 Member: 167331Members, Reinforced - Shadow Posts: 465 Fully active user
    edited May 2014
    @meatmachine I honestly think Exosuits should be reverted to their old form, 50-75 res, big investment but big reward if played correctly. Reduce their burst dps again, improve their hp, they made for amazing pressure vs aliens and were generally considered to be the power play for marines. Now, its all about jetpacks while exosuits take a backseat the entire game and most pub servers don't even bother researching them anymore considering them to be a liability.

    Exosuits are currently designed in such a way that it is a glass cannon role that tanks damage and can die very quickly to just 2 skulks even with marine support and full upgrades...which is just absurd. Old exosuits were countered with forcing beacons and leaving the exosuits vulnerable.
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  • DraconisDraconis Join Date: 2003-02-18 Member: 13722Members, Reinforced - Onos Posts: 548
    RaZDaZ wrote: »
    it is a glass cannon role that tanks damage

    What? :P

    Exos are fine for their job, which is a) guarding light marines from the back lines or b) defend a long corridor or base from the top of the CC. It is *not* a tank or a front line unit, JPs are ( both are achieved from mobility). But all pubs player just blazingly rush their exos in the front lines :/.

    And they are finely priced for these jobs btw. 40 pres is close to the 38 res of jp/sg/welder. Too bad having an exo means immobilizing another marine for weld, and MACs are utterly useless in combat (blocking line of sight, and too vulnerable to bilebombs).

    Main problem for marine late game is imo JPs. I became aware of this when playing balance mod ( Cf this link ) Boosting jp acceleration, removing double jump and limiting fuel is brilliant!



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  • joshhhjoshhh Milwaukee, WI Join Date: 2011-06-21 Member: 105717Members, NS2 Playtester, NS2 Map Tester, Reinforced - Supporter, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow, Subnautica Playtester Posts: 1,437 Advanced user
    ns2isgood wrote: »
    lol, too balanced? come on, did you watch the WC? the marines won every round besides the 1 time the aliens used the tactic of an early base rush. i don't think you can find anything better to give you an idea of balance, unless we want to refer to the infamous "50/50" win rates.

    i always found the mention of the 50/50 win rates incredibly stupid. guess what happens after one side wins a match? they switch to the other team the next round, lol. you see it all the time in pub games, especially when people are stacking teams.

    Pretty sure this was explained ages ago. It's not good data to base general game balance on. Prior to the WC LAN, premier scrim alien/marine win rates were a lot closer to 50/50.

    As for general pub play, there are still problems... but overall the game balance feels good. As of now, performance would increase pubbing enjoyment over anything else. Even with servers running NS2+, you still get framedropping cuz all the random sht going on.
    meatmachine
  • VetinariVetinari Join Date: 2013-07-23 Member: 186325Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Silver Posts: 3,447 Advanced user
    Lol, people are complaining about the epic back-and-forth games that this game is so well-known for?

    "TOO balanced"??

    At face value, I'd say that's ridiculous as balance is a marines-alien see-saw and giving one team an advantage would obviously crap all over the face of what this game stands for.

    I am NOT complaining about epic two hour games with lots of back and forth and drama and tension and stuff. I like those game just like anyone. I'm talking about those static ~40min games, whose second half entirely consists of "You have these TP, we have those; now let's gently push the RT in between to drag this out as long as possible".

    And I don't really now what a solution could be. The thing about deteriorating resources sounds interesting, but is probably not viable. Let's discuss if there is something that can be done about it.

    "Too balanced" was just a fun way of formulating it. Balance is great at the moment.
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  • xen32xen32 Join Date: 2012-10-18 Member: 162676Members, Reinforced - Supporter Posts: 1,011 Fully active user
    edited May 2014
    And I don't really now what a solution could be. The thing about deteriorating resources sounds interesting, but is probably not viable. Let's discuss if there is something that can be done about it.

    How about:
    If all tech points have been occupied for 20 minutes AND neither base was destroyed during that time AND each team has more than one base, game freezes for every field player, both commander log out and go to secret negotiation room that only opens at this stage. Then commanders proceed to discuss peace treaty, you know, who's keeping what room, like, borders, who's going to clean up the mess, etc. Once agreement is reached, game unfreezes and everybody shakes hands. Friendship.
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  • IronHorseIronHorse Developer, QA Manager, Technical Support & contributor Join Date: 2010-05-08 Member: 71669Members, Super Administrators, Forum Admins, Forum Moderators, NS2 Developer, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Subnautica Playtester, Subnautica PT Lead, Pistachionauts Posts: 8,181 admin
    edited May 2014
    Peace?.... I hate the word, as I hate hell and all Kharaa
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  • SaltlickSaltlick Join Date: 2013-01-03 Member: 177347Members, Reinforced - Shadow Posts: 86 Advanced user
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  • ritualsacrificeritualsacrifice Join Date: 2012-11-14 Member: 171148Members, Reinforced - Shadow Posts: 708 Advanced user
    i blame the grenade launchers
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  • Soul_RiderSoul_Rider Mod Bean Join Date: 2004-06-19 Member: 29388Members, Constellation, Squad Five Blue Posts: 4,268 Advanced user
    i blame the grenade launchers

    They certainly slow down alien pushes when they have the advantage. Maybe reducing the damage vs players would aid with aliens not be able to finish off marines. They'd still be just as effective for marine pushes against alien hive rooms, but not against individual players, so teams will need some shotties as well as GL's, thus reducing the total number on the field and keeping the balance and teamwork aspect of NS2.

    Or maybe not, discuss.. :P

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  • PaajtorPaajtor Join Date: 2012-11-09 Member: 168634Members Posts: 308 Advanced user
    edited May 2014
    i blame the grenade launchers
    ..or have the 2 Lerk gasses work the other way around: Umbra as a release-, and Spores as a ranged-attack.
    Has this been tried anyway?
  • RaZDaZRaZDaZ Join Date: 2012-11-05 Member: 167331Members, Reinforced - Shadow Posts: 465 Fully active user
    edited May 2014
    @Draconis‌

    What most people would assume an exosuit to be nowadays (a support role) doesn't work in practice because it is the first to be targeted in almost every scenario and the glass cannon analogy is quite comparable therefore it is unable to fill its role cost-efficiently even in the hands of an amazing player. Simply tagging an exosuit as a support role is farcical at best because it does not fit this role well.

    Go to any decent skilled server (doesn't need to be competitive) and honestly tell me how many games beyond the 15 minute mark have exosuits. For 40res, almost the same as a jetpack+weapon, it is unable to compete with the flexibility and power of a pure JPer and in fact, you're more of a liability in some cases whereas a jetpacker is never really a liability.

    That's not to say exosuits are completely useless but they function better as base defense rather than base assault. All it takes is 2-3 lifeforms, could simply be good skulks and there's a good chance that exosuit is going down even with marine support. I think single arm rails fill their use but again, miss once and you're probably dead.

    I just find it frustrating that exosuits, aesthetically speaking are the coolest and one of the most badass roles in this game. Firing up those dual cylinders can make anyone feel like an ultimate badass but in their current state, we rarely see them and we rarely see them do serious work and that is a big shame.

    TL;DR - For such a heavy res sink, too many downsides, not enough flexibility. My firm opinion is that exosuits need a buff regarding survivability, whether its mobility or more health.
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