FAF Beta - Feedback

10

First of all, thanks for all the feedback, keep it coming.
I will be reading through everything and replying in bulk.

Aeon Chrono:
The PR is done and awaiting the last tweaks, once it's merged it will be featured here.

Soul Ripper:
I will look into buffing it in some other areas, it seems as if the personal stealth buff introduced in the last patch was not enough to make it viable in most scenarios.

Kennels:
More changes will likely be coming but they aren't here yet as they require more discussion and testing. For now, these are meant to bridge the gap between the hive and the kennel but I agree that something more is needed.

Loyalist:
We will look into slightly tweaking it in other areas as currently, it feels like a slightly worse version of the titan with occasional big impact due to its ability (Yes it's actually useful and very powerful if used correctly although that's pretty situational and hard to pull-off)

We're planning on tackling the navy, mostly underwater, gameplay and adjusting it to make the navy - torpedo bomber and surface-underwater interaction more interesting and less one-sided. There will also likely be a frigate rebalance alongside so that while cybran will still have the best frigate it will be much less oppressive.
I can't guarantee it will make it into this patch (January) but we will do our best.

In terms of other more drastic changes: I am not in favor of doing big changes without good reasoning just to shake up the meta. FAF gets a lot of its diversity from maps so I don't believe we need to change the meta drastically every other year because, in my opinion, it doesn't really get stale if you consider how different the game plays on Theta, Loki, Ditch, Seton's, 16 bases 20x20 mapgen.
That is not to say that we are opposed to bigger changes, they just need to be done on the merit of the gameplay being either boring and simply not fun, or broken. If you have any suggestions you can create a separate thread or suggest it here as well. You also don't need to propose concrete changes, just a direction.

Overall I feel like currently the balance and the meta are in a good state without any single strategy being dominant in most map scenarios (T3 land rush was too strong hence it got nerfed) and the biggest offenders: Ahwassa, Nukes, Snipers, Titan/Loya rush and spam on bigger maps were eliminated.

We will also be looking into adjusting the costs (probably some Energy Cost nerfs) for T3 and Experimental Artilleries as well Yolo/Para. Alongside adjusting the Reclaim % left by higher tech units we hope to prolong and improve the dynamism of phases: late T3 / early T4. Hopefully, it will also be enough to create a new phase of mid-T4 that is rarely seen which will feature many land and some air experimental fighting instead of people defaulting to Nukes/Artilerries which will cost significantly more E and therefore require more infrastructure and won't be as easy mass dumps as they are right now.

2

Traditionally, gunships didn't cost as much energy per mass as other air units. So that would be another reason not to make the soul ripper more expensive in terms of energy. The more compelling reason of course is that it doesn't get used very much because it's not great.

0

@taunoob1 said in FAF Beta - Feedback:

@femboy said in FAF Beta - Feedback:

I do agree with one thing and that is the BUG/soul ripper did not need a nerf. It’s already such an awful unit compared to the ahwassa and Czar’s performances. Kinda like the Atlantis aswell.

Yeah, this seems very odd. Washers are definitely too strong but lumping in the Soul Ripper just because it's also an air T4s is not enough justification to nerf one of the currently worst units in the game. If the ripper gets it's E-requirement doubled it drastically needs some sort of compensatory buff, otherwise I can't see a realistic scenario to build it over gunships/bombers, something I'm already having a hard time doing.

The problem is you need exactly 1 t3 pgen to build a soul ripper in 3 minutes in a teamgame under current e cost. That’s 70k hp that asfs could target in the middle of an air fight instead of enemy air causing a huge snowball loss. The reason you don’t see it is because washer and czar cost nothing in energy infrastructure and can do the same thing for air fights while also killing bases. It isn’t about “do I make gunships or strats or soul ripper” because any person at min 12 in a teamgame can make a soul ripper with zero infrastructure while strats require extra factories, bp, and pgens since they are drastically more e intensive per unit of mass.

With that said it can still get a buff, but it’s still problematic at the e cost it was at.

0

Soul Ripper doesn't need to have great offense, I kind of liked that it was the tankiest air unit (just like Megalith is tankiest land EXP and Brick is tankiest T3 unit, albeit at inefficient cost). However, it could not adequately perform its damage sponge role due to the extremely high DPS per cost that comes out of ASF swarms. And buffing its HP to compensate for that would make all other sources of AA damage useless. Idk if a low DPS high HP air exp is possible in this game, but it would be cool to see it work.

put the xbox units in the game pls u_u

2

@ftxcommando said in FAF Beta - Feedback:

That’s 70k hp that asfs could target in the middle of an air fight instead of enemy air

Set target priority to "Fighters" and the bug becomes close to useless. Maybe its missiles will kill 3 ASF during the air fight.

0

UI mods shouldn’t be a baseline for default game balance. It still doesn’t address the real problem of it costing zero infrastructure to make a bug from any position in a game.

0

@tagada you have my attention when you said improve dynamism of phases of t3 and t4 sir. I'm content, the gods have spoken to me.

I do have a suggest for prolonging mid-t3 maybe late-t3 is probably very uhhh not agreeable idk, but making SACUs be the only ones that can build Experimentals maybe even nukes/smds/t3-t4-strategic-artillery but that'd be a giga balance change so I doubt it'd be considered but I decided I'd suggest it anyhow. (please show mercy xD)

AI Developer for FAF | https://forum.faforever.com/topic/53/ai-swarm-ai-mod-for-faforever
Developer for LOUD Project | https://discord.gg/DfWXMg9
AI Development FAF Discord | https://discord.gg/ChRfhB3

Member of the FAF Association
FAF Developer

3

On the Soul Ripper:

The Problem:
Currently, it feels like an air experimental without purpose. We have the ahwasser for massive AoE, and the czar for great single target damage. The soulripper is an awkward middle-of-the road. If you want to snipe a com or land exp, czar is better. If you want to flatten a base or t3 army, ahwasser is better. The soul ripper doesn't excel at any of these tasks, and especially as cybran you are better off just building t3 bombers or gunships to fill these roles. Additionally, the strategic capabilities of the Soul Ripper don't feel special at all. In most regards, it feels and performs like a group of T3 gunships.

On raw combat power, the soul ripper is not as cost-effective as T3 gunships. Having less efficient T4 is not a problem on land or navy, as you get a higher concentration of combat power compared to building more T3 units. But in the air, packing lots of units close together is not nearly as much of a problem. Thus if a T4 air unit isn't as resource efficient as T3, it has to offer other capabilities to compensate. Both the ahwasser and czar do this sufficiently by offering unique abilities not achievable with T3 air, while the soul ripper does not.

Proposed solution:
One way to give the Soul Ripper a more distinctive role and feel could be to make it a long-range bombardment unit. For example, what would happen if we give it a range of 62? This would enable it to hover on the edge of a battle or hostile base (conveniently just outranging SAMs, being able to avoid them with good micro), poking away at the enemy and drifting in and out of vision with it's stealth. Kind of like a lategame air version of cybran stealth com or hoplites, or tempests in starcraft2. In combination with the stealthed ASF it can be used to deceive the enemy and bait air fights, fitting the general cybran philosophy well. Due to being an air unit it can attack from unique angles unlike any other long-range unit in the game today (just think of the possibilities on mountainous maps like gap!). This would add a new micro-intensive strategic dimension to the game.

If it proves too oppressive, values like range, dps, hp and speed could of course be tuned. But I would love to see a new angle being explored with the bug, instead of its current existence as a strictly bigger gunship.

0

@xayo said in FAF Beta - Feedback:

conveniently outranging SAMs

Yes, a Fatboy should also get a buff so it outranges t2 arty.
Units that can be countered are pretty boring anyway.

And the soulripper was buffed compared to the other air t4s.
Its e cost was only increased by 98.3% compared to an 109.2% increase for the czar and a 146.2% increase for the ahwassa. Even before it was less e per mass than the other two (14.12* vs 16.25* its mass cost in e). So even though it might need more buffs, saying it wasn't buffed compared to other air t4s is just wrong. So making a soulripper compared to an ahwassa is now more viable than before the patch.

2

@xayo

This seems like a really good role for it, but I don't know if outranging SAMS is great... since it has stealth already, maybe make it have the same range as SAMS? That way you could outrange SAMS if out of omni or vision range

put the xbox units in the game pls u_u

2

I’m not sure about that, couldn’t that mean you could stack 2 soulrippers and just clean up every base if you win air? Since SAMS can’t stop you anymore, you’d just continue making ASF and soulrippers and win game. Specially with them bearing a 99k health bar

FAF Website Developer

0

If it almost outranges SAMs, it would be easy to kill small groups of SAMs, and still hard to kill big groups of SAMs, but you could try to avoid them. So it would be harder to spam SAMs to keep out a soul ripper out of a large area but it would still be viable to spam SAMs to keep the ripper out of a single base. It would also be easier to protect a ripper if it has more range because you can have more land-based units supporting it when it's further away from the enemy.

0

Please no. It's enough that Ahwassa can kill sams without losing much hp.

0

That design of the unit will require it to cost the e that washer or czar costs. You can’t have people making a unit that baits air fights by sniping sams/defenses away and therefore risks an immediate and complete game loss while also costing basically zero infrastructure.

0

It's kind of weird how fast balance swings when you introduce SAMs vs Air or how fast the balance swings when the SAMs Disappear vs Air ( in a certain area). Air can sometimes feel very oppressive in Teamgames, it's extremely different in 1v1s tho where Air is just a great support role and can offer an upper hand, but in Teamgames where one players can invest fully in Air. It can get oppressive with how easy it is to all in snipes and how losing air is just an instant game lost which can sometimes be frustrating.

Soul Ripper is too slow to be effective biggest buff for Soul Ripper would be a Movement Buff & Alpha Damage, would make it a quick ambush experimental (flying monkeylord basically)

AI Developer for FAF | https://forum.faforever.com/topic/53/ai-swarm-ai-mod-for-faforever
Developer for LOUD Project | https://discord.gg/DfWXMg9
AI Development FAF Discord | https://discord.gg/ChRfhB3

Member of the FAF Association
FAF Developer

0

I might have missed it, but will sera battleship nukes get the same kind of cost increase as nuke subs and stationary nukes?

0

For now, no.

0

@tagada may I ask for your thought on why not increase the energy cost of nuke missiles? Wouldn't this be easier?

My first assumption was naval balance, but regarding the sera BS I'm not sure that the planned chances are healthier/better (without unplanned side effects).

0

Oh, I indeed cant't read as I thought the missile cost was changed, not the sub/launcher itself..
Changing the sera BS cost to nerf its nukes wouldn't be a great idea, so good that it's not planned.

0

Then I don't quite get the energy cost explanation though: "while the bigger energy cost increase makes it a lot harder to make a fast second nuke."

On the current balance it takes (roughly) 1 additional t3 pgen to build a nuke launcher in a reasonable amount of time and 2 t3 pgens to actually load the missile.

The proposed change of doubling the energy cost would make it so you need 2 t3 pgens for the entire process. While this means you need to build the 2nd pgen earlier, which is a slight nerf, this results in essentially no change to the total cost of launching your first or any subsequent nukes.
(the additional 3k mass increase does of course increase cost though)

If the goal is to discourage building a second launcher, beyond the proposed 3k mass increase, further increasing the launcher's mass cost, or the energy cost for launcher (and missile) beyond the 2 pgens from the proposed changes would have a much bigger effect imo.