Idea to Equalize Mechanics Across Archetypes

DevoraDevora Member Posts: 194 Capable
Problem
Balance. It is common for classes from different orgs but in the same archetype to have mechanically different skillsets. If this were consistent and there were to be a different skillset for each class, that's up to 30 skillsets needing to be balanced within and against each other, with all their permutations. I would argue that no one can expect that kind of wizardry from a handful of staff. This situation would create constant balance issues despite how amazing the staff and volunteers are.

Suggested solution
Have 5 to 8 thoughtful, synergistic, well balanced skillsets for 5 to 8 archetypes, and then just change the flavoring across different orgs, but give each archetype the same mechanics. This would also make combat and competitions much more fair, and make expectations from staff/volunteers more reasonable. Making the game more balanced also helps retain players.


Source
This idea is based on @Xenthos's comment from the Let's talk about Glomdoring thread: https://forums.lusternia.com/discussion/comment/192404/#Comment_192404. I brought it up in Why people are leaving the game: https://forums.lusternia.com/discussion/comment/192474/#Comment_192474 and it got seconded.
Arix said:
Tzaraziko died for your spins
«1

Comments

  • SaranSaran Member Posts: 2,179 Transcendent
    I think before you do this the first step should be dropping skillchoices, locking each class to a specific group of three, duplicating skills as necessary so there's no sharing, and then seeing how that works out.
    image
    image
  • AramelAramel Member Posts: 283 Mythical
    edited March 8
    Thanks for starting this thread.

    I do think giving everyone the exact same archetype choices is best solution, both for actual and perceived equality between classes. As I said in response to your comment in the leaving thread, one caveat is that I would like all the abovementioned archetypes to be accessible to all orgs (so no mage/druid and wiccan/guardian split), because if the Glomdoring thread is anything to go by, people are already discussing whether communes have it easier than cities or vice versa, and the whole idea of equalized skillsets is to remove toxicity over inter-org balance as a factor from the game.
    (clan): Falmiis says, "Aramelise, verb, 1. adorn with many flowers."
  • DevoraDevora Member Posts: 194 Capable
    Saran said:
    I think before you do this the first step should be dropping skillchoices, locking each class to a specific group of three, duplicating skills as necessary so there's no sharing, and then seeing how that works out.
    Could you clarify for me? Do you mean locking each class to a group of 3 class skillsets, classes, archetypes, or orgs? I agree experimentation is key.
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • DeichtineDeichtine Member Posts: 2,016 Transcendent
    As a rough concept warriors and monks are pretty similar already they share the same core mechanics roughly speaking.

    Mages/druids while they share the same core mechanic of melding they are quite different in terms of how they go for kills. Up for  rework soon anyway.

    Bards sort of fit this description already a bit. They focus around aurics, dsong and their terts(drama/etc) terts being mostly accessible to all bards except eco/tarot split. With their song as a supporting element. I know that's a super generalised version of bards so don't pick at it too much, of course there's differences but the core bits are roughly the same for each.

    If you wanted to homogenise the game I figure the starting point would be wiccans/guardians as they are the ones with the biggest differences class to class and all have fairly different core styles and mechanics for their kills.

    Would this idea basically be to sort of wipe out the six guardian/wiccan classes and essentially replace them with 1 roughly similar class?
  • AramelAramel Member Posts: 283 Mythical
    @Devora I think what Saran means is that right now there are some archetypes with class skills that are shared between them. For example, bards take the skill Acrobatics as their second, required skill, but monks also have the option to take acrobatics as an optional tertiary, which complicates things when trying to balance between bard and monk. (Though my argument is still that balancing between archetypes is not as crucial at the moment as balancing between orgs.)
    (clan): Falmiis says, "Aramelise, verb, 1. adorn with many flowers."
  • DeichtineDeichtine Member Posts: 2,016 Transcendent
    Aramel said:
    @Devora I think what Saran means is that right now there are some archetypes with class skills that are shared between them. For example, bards take the skill Acrobatics as their second, required skill, but monks also have the option to take acrobatics as an optional tertiary, which complicates things when trying to balance between bard and monk. (Though my argument is still that balancing between archetypes is not as crucial at the moment as balancing between orgs.)
    That point its an easy fix. You can put skills in a skillset that are monk or bard only. Even in a shared skillset.

    EG look at the warrior specs and their guardian equivs. EG Shadowedge and such are in Night but not accessible to Shadowdancers only Ebonguard.
  • SaranSaran Member Posts: 2,179 Transcendent
    Devora said:
    Saran said:
    I think before you do this the first step should be dropping skillchoices, locking each class to a specific group of three, duplicating skills as necessary so there's no sharing, and then seeing how that works out.
    Could you clarify for me? Do you mean locking each class to a group of 3 class skillsets, classes, archetypes, or orgs? I agree experimentation is key.
    So like Serenwilde might have like...

    Moondancer - Moon, Wicca, Healing
    Serenguard - Cavalier, Knighthood, Totems > Moonhart
    Hartstone - Stag, Druidry, Shamanism
    Spiritsinger - Wildearrane, Acrobatics, Dramaturgy
    Shofangi - Shofangi, Harmony, Acrobatics
    Wildewood - Stag, Wildewood, Ecology


    This way you don't have like... four different stag druid variations you just have the one and if you have it so like "Healing" for MDs is their own skill they can make whatever changes they need without ever impacting a different class.

    If it doesn't work then you'd step further towards what you've suggested and just make everything generic with themed lines, but if that's more sustainable then you could leave it there, or even reintroduce a more limited version of choices if it looks like the processes could support it.
    image
    image
  • CoralineCoraline Member Posts: 346 Master
    I will say, though. If I logged in to find that I've turned into a Wildewood now I'd be super mad about it. The reason I chose Druidry is because I don't want to change my race (and I didn't know this about druids when I chose it because I'm a real newbie)
    2019/05/29 01:36:00 - The squad known as 'Seriously Choco-squid this time' supporting Gaudiguch generated 1 power
  • DevoraDevora Member Posts: 194 Capable
    Yeah, Hartstone still has Druidry in Saran's example. Do you mean you want the ecology tert?
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • NiwynneNiwynne Member Posts: 54 Capable
    I did not intend to start this with my earlier post. Calm down people.
  • DevoraDevora Member Posts: 194 Capable
    Deichtine said:
    Would this idea basically be to sort of wipe out the six guardian/wiccan classes and essentially replace them with 1 roughly similar class?
    Imo, yes. Either 1 archetype or 2 (1 archetype for cities, 1 archetype for communes). The classes would be mainly distinguished by flavor.

    Yes, as has been mentioned this reduces variety. My rebuttals are 1) if the game were extremely well balanced thanks to much more manageable amounts of permutations, players would enjoy lots of room to experiment and innovate. And 2) the more similar the mechanics are across archetypes and orgs, the easier it actually is to make reworks or add new features such as new archetypes or a quaternary skillset without wreaking havoc with the existing combatbalance.
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • CoralineCoraline Member Posts: 346 Master
    While I love dreamweaving, I wouldn't mind giving it up for an equalized tertiary skill (I'd be sad about it, but I'll get over it). But I wouldn't really like being forced to change my race. So his example is fine to me, personally.
    2019/05/29 01:36:00 - The squad known as 'Seriously Choco-squid this time' supporting Gaudiguch generated 1 power
  • SaranSaran Member Posts: 2,179 Transcendent
    I'm not certain, but are you also suggesting that the resulting classes would still have skillchoices?
    image
    image
  • CoralineCoraline Member Posts: 346 Master
    As long as I'm not locked into Wildewood, I'm fine
    2019/05/29 01:36:00 - The squad known as 'Seriously Choco-squid this time' supporting Gaudiguch generated 1 power
  • DevoraDevora Member Posts: 194 Capable
    @Niwynne Start what? The thread? As you can see from OP it was based on posts by other people. If you disagree with the idea being suggested, please share why.

    @Enya I noticed you disagreed with my post on this idea in another thread. Would you mind sharing why?
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • DeichtineDeichtine Member Posts: 2,016 Transcendent
    Devora said:
    Deichtine said:
    Would this idea basically be to sort of wipe out the six guardian/wiccan classes and essentially replace them with 1 roughly similar class?
    Imo, yes. Either 1 archetype or 2 (1 archetype for cities, 1 archetype for communes). The classes would be mainly distinguished by flavor.

    Yes, as has been mentioned this reduces variety. My rebuttals are 1) if the game were extremely well balanced thanks to much more manageable amounts of permutations, players would enjoy lots of room to experiment and innovate. And 2) the more similar the mechanics are across archetypes and orgs, the easier it actually is to make reworks or add new features such as new archetypes or a quaternary skillset without wreaking havoc with the existing combatbalance.

    I think this sort of goes back to the issue of we have too many orgs. Not to derail it but just if the work load for too many classes is an issue to balance and we don't have the player base to support 6 orgs. It sort of a different issue but it overlaps.
  • DevoraDevora Member Posts: 194 Capable
    Saran said:
    Devora said:
    Noob question. Is there a particular reason to design classes from different orgs in the same archetype with mechanically different skillsets? 
    It's one of the ways Lusternia differentiates itself from the other games and is, when it's working right, a selling point of the game.

    For me, the real issue comes in when you then add in the unending juggling that's caused by shared skills and choices. 

    Because it's not just 30 classes, it's like... 26-31 potential legal combinations of primary, secondary, and tertiary available to a single org. Like... you could have something like 161 players and each of them has a unique combination of class skills, more if you wanted to include high vs low magic into it.

    On the other hand, if we locked down classes to specific kits then it'd potentially be less than 30 classes worth of balancing given they're all variations on the archetypes.
    Hope you don't mind me reposting this from here https://forums.lusternia.com/discussion/comment/192484/#Comment_192484.

    I think you raise the super important question of permutations with primary/secondary/tert skills. I would support tert skills being flexible across all archetypes, and secondary skills being flexible across some archetypes. But your example of 1 primary, 1 secondary, and 1 tert per archetype per org is also persuasive.
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • OraelOrael Member, Administrator, Moderator, Gods Posts: 291 Creator
    I don't really want to be the naysayer here, and you're free to discuss it. I just want to make sure expectations are set and prevent people from getting their hopes up to see nothing come of it.

    At this point in time, something this large and involved is really not on the table for consideration or implementation in the near future. It'd be a huge undertaking that would require a ton of effort. 
  • SaranSaran Member Posts: 2,179 Transcendent
    Also, yeah I just think going from 30 with all of the variable choices down to 8 is just way too far if you don't at least aim to get things more manageable first. 

    And even with skinning, for ease of communication about issues there'd be generic names for all the skills so you'd get to the point where it's really just the lines that are different and that's it which is a pretty big loss for the game.
    image
    image
  • DevoraDevora Member Posts: 194 Capable
    Deichtine said:
    if the work load for too many classes is an issue to balance and we don't have the player base to support 6 orgs.
    I see your point. If the orgs get nuked to 3, it wouldn't be as much of a balance problem for every org to have their own skillsets.

    However, it seems to me that starting from scratch with 3 orgs is way more coding than just simplifying the current system. I also don't think the population has dropped so low consistently that this drastic move is necessary.

    Even if we nuked down to 3, I would still argue for this idea to be implemented. A few super balanced skillsets are much better for dynamism and experimentation than 1500 badly balanced skillsets - I mean right now some people feel that it's gotten so bad that it doesn't even make sense to play outside of a single org. Which defeats the point of offering variety in the first place and causes players to leave.
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • SaranSaran Member Posts: 2,179 Transcendent
    Devora said:
    Saran said:
    Devora said:
    Noob question. Is there a particular reason to design classes from different orgs in the same archetype with mechanically different skillsets? 
    It's one of the ways Lusternia differentiates itself from the other games and is, when it's working right, a selling point of the game.

    For me, the real issue comes in when you then add in the unending juggling that's caused by shared skills and choices. 

    Because it's not just 30 classes, it's like... 26-31 potential legal combinations of primary, secondary, and tertiary available to a single org. Like... you could have something like 161 players and each of them has a unique combination of class skills, more if you wanted to include high vs low magic into it.

    On the other hand, if we locked down classes to specific kits then it'd potentially be less than 30 classes worth of balancing given they're all variations on the archetypes.
    Hope you don't mind me reposting this from here https://forums.lusternia.com/discussion/comment/192484/#Comment_192484.

    I think you raise the super important question of permutations with primary/secondary/tert skills. I would support tert skills being flexible across all archetypes, and secondary skills being flexible across some archetypes. But your example of 1 primary, 1 secondary, and 1 tert per archetype per org is also persuasive.
    So the issue is that each variation can be significant enough that they could be effectively different class that you need to balance, if you had three tert variations of the 8 suggested you're already at 24 variations to balance.

    I also kinda imagine that locking down the choices might be easier?
    Cause you wouldn't be developing 8 generic classes, you'd just lock out the options that already exist with some work around lesson refunds and flexing to what would be legal if you weren't already there.
    image
    image
  • NiwynneNiwynne Member Posts: 54 Capable
    Orael said:
    I don't really want to be the naysayer here, and you're free to discuss it. I just want to make sure expectations are set and prevent people from getting their hopes up to see nothing come of it.

    At this point in time, something this large and involved is really not on the table for consideration or implementation in the near future. It'd be a huge undertaking that would require a ton of effort. 
    This is basically what I was trying to say. Orael just explained it better than I could.
  • DevoraDevora Member Posts: 194 Capable
    Orael said:
    I don't really want to be the naysayer here, and you're free to discuss it. I just want to make sure expectations are set and prevent people from getting their hopes up to see nothing come of it.

    At this point in time, something this large and involved is really not on the table for consideration or implementation in the near future. It'd be a huge undertaking that would require a ton of effort. 
    Two reasons I brought it up, though I had your point in mind. 1. I feel like it seems easier than nuking the orgs and creating 3 new ones, which has received vocal support lately.
    2. I figured in the long term it seems easier / more sustainable than constantly revamping classes. Mostly since designing equalized mechanics would involve picking from already existing mechanics, such as applying Glom's synergistic model equally to other classes, instead of coming up with brand new mechanics.

    @Orael you are much better informed than I am. How far off were my above guesses?
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • XenthosXenthos Shadow Lord Member Posts: 6,611 Transcendent
    @Orael What about just flagging classes to allow skillflexing cross org (either to a specific one or more than one), and then adjusting power to work with any power instead of being org-specific?

    It seems like that would be a much lesser investment on mechanical implementation since cross-org classflex has previously existed, the main hurdles being: 1) The nexus power limitation, and 2) The RP mess behind explaining the thing.
    image
  • KalnidKalnid Member Posts: 536 Fabled
    Man, affinity still exists. The odds of cross-org skillsets becoming a thing is nonexistent.
  • EnyaEnya Member Posts: 415 Gifted
    @Devora even if possible/feasable/likely, this is not a good idea.
  • DevoraDevora Member Posts: 194 Capable
    Esoneyuna said:
    I actually much rather have them force us all into the same 5 classes with only cosmetic differences. Giving everyone access to -every- current skill would be hell to implement. Giving them only access to opposing org skills would be equal hell and still give a big imbalance.

    5 classes would be a lot of inititial work (mainly picking what template to use from each current org) and rewriting lines and stuff but in the end it will save a lot of time in balancing. Hell it would reduce the mage rework  by quite a lot of manhours since they would have to design 1 instead of 6 classes from the ground up. Balancing would be easier, everyone still gets to hold RP flare of their org and so on.
    I agree with @Esoneyuna's point. My bold. Reposted https://forums.lusternia.com/discussion/comment/192576/#Comment_192576.
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • DevoraDevora Member Posts: 194 Capable
    Enya said:
    @Devora even if possible/feasable/likely, this is not a good idea.
    @Enya Could you share why not? Like I've said before, I'm just a noob, so I'm happy to readjust my views once I understand what I'm missing.
    Arix said:
    Tzaraziko died for your spins
  • StratasStratas Member Posts: 418 Mythical
    I know Orael said it's not possible, and that's sad, but I would 100% support this. I don't think at this point that the sheer complexity of combat and the overly partisan nature of skills is doing anyone any favors. Reducing it down so org-centered primary/secondary skills are largely reskinned versions of each other would even the playing field and make balance easier going forward.

    My personal change to the suggestion would be to give every org's skillset a unique skill or two, similar to the night/moon fae. That way pyromancers would continue to be all offensive, but aquamancers could still heal. Glombards might keep wyrdshield, and Hallibards keep EmeraldGrazioso. Not necessarily those specifically, but just something where the skills differ in a manner other than flavor and damage type. It would add a little bit to the balance game as well, but hopefully be easier for everyone to provide input to since everyone knows basically the rest of the skillset and how things will synergize with it. But on the other hand that might just end up like Orgdrinks and nobody will be happy.

    Doesn't matter anyways, because none of it's gonna happen. But I can dream.
    The purpose of writing is to inflate weak ideas, obscure pure reasoning, and inhibit clarity. With a little practice, writing can be an intimidating and impenetrable fog!
  • EnyaEnya Member Posts: 415 Gifted
    While balancing many different skillsets and interactions can be very difficult -and trust me I know: Hartstone druids share skillsets with something like eleven other classes - I don't think that making the entire game more generic will really help. 

    I think that the simpler and more elegant fix is to just split the copied skills. Instead of Wiccans and Druids and Warriors all learning totems and sharing Moon/Stag in different ways, make Stag its own self contained skillset (containing all of totems+Stag), Moon its own skillset (Containing totems+Moon) and give warriors a choice between the two if you want, and let them balance separately. Split the druid skills between Hartstone and Blacktalon - even call them "Hartstone" and "Blacktalon". 

    This should be way easier on resources, and removes the problem of entanglement allowing more elegant and self-contained balancing to occur according to the needs of individual classes. The bigger problem is how that balancing itself happens, not that orgs get unique(ish) skills. 

    A big ol issue IMO is the Curing Overhaul itself, as I pointed out strenuously and at length during said overhaul. When you think about org synergy, it is not a coincidence that the org generally recognized to have the best synergy overall does so outside of the curing overhaul's purview. What we need is to, as a playerbase and with administration, sit down and have a big think about niches that need to be mirrored in each org, how each class in the org should "match" the ability of the other orgs to fill those niches, and change skills accordingly. A project like that was happening in the old envoys but got tabled and then dropped with the series of changes. Merp.
Sign In or Register to comment.