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The Chaingun

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Jon_Osc, Jul 1, 2016.

  1. Jon_Osc

    Jon_Osc Quality Assurance Staff Member

    So there has already been some discussion on the CG, but I felt it was time for a dedicated thread to discuss its design and balance in depth. For the record, everything written here is just like, my opinion man. Feel free to share yours if it is any different, but let's try to avoid going off topic/making another dick-measuring contest that the devs have to sift through eh? :cool:

    To begin, I'd like to say that I mostly love this iteration of the CG. The current spin-up mechanic is really satisfying to me compared to the CGs of Tribes past. The tracers are stellar and I find they provide awesome feedback for figuring out how much to lead a target. DPS/RoF, spread, bullet speed, projectile size, and inheritance all seem on point to me. Amazing job dudes @ ArcheType!

    That said, there is one glaring flaw that I think should be tinkered with in upcoming updates: The Reload mechanic. I have heard about plans for an overheat mechanic, so reloading may currently be a placeholder to balance the weapon until that is implemented? Regardless, the 50-round CG "clips" that currently exist feel somewhat awkward and I would like to see them phased out once overheating makes it in.


    My proposed changes:
    • No reloading: Let us spew those 200 bullets as we see fit
    • Introduce the heat mechanic: Heat increases as you fire, but decreases if you move fast (or are under water)
    • The penalty for an overheating chaingun: Self-damage

    The point of the overheat mechanic is to prevent chain spam in a duel while keeping it viable for chasing. A player standing still or moving relatively slowly (like when in a duel) will overheat as they spam chain and suffer some kind of negative effect. A chaser who is hauling ass should be able to vomit bullets to their heart's content.

    Now to defend the unfamiliar and radical part of my suggestion! A common mechanic for overheating guns is to increase spread/inaccuracy (see Tribes: Vengeance's CG). While I think such a system would function in a similar way to balance the gun, I feel that adding the much maligned RNG factor to the overheated gun is very undesirable. Instead, I'm interested in the gun always performing at 100% capacity (ala T1 & T2), but directly harming a player who chooses to forgo honor and mow down their enemies with bullets.

    Tweaking the numbers (how fast heat builds, how much speed cools it, how much damage you receive) is the hard part. I figure we can only reach a sweet spot through testing, but as a starting point:
    • Overheat after firing ~50 consecutive shots
    • Moving around 50 km/h or below should have minimal impact on heat
    • Moving over 150 km/h should almost completely negate heat
    • Shooting ~100 further bullets after overheating should result in a light armor killing itself from full HP

    Alright, I'm done. Let me know what y'all think.


    PS: I think it would be nice if the CG sound effect was a bit heavier. Less "pop pop" and more "dakka dakka"
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2016
  2. SeymourGore

    SeymourGore #1 Stinkiest NA

    The self damage seems a little harsh to me, and would probably prefer to see a 2-3 second 'weapon jam' cooldown if heat gets too high. This would cause players to fire in bursts when their heat gets high (unless they're chasing), otherwise face a time consuming weapon jam.

    I do agree with the no reloading bit and moving away from the clip system. Seymour wants to be able to not worry about binding a 'reload' key.
     
  3. kzn

    kzn Instant Access

    I'm going to disagree on the subject of the tracers, at least in part. It initially felt like more tracers were being spawned than bullets were being fired, but after recording it and slowing it down I'm pretty sure that what feels bad about them to me is the tracers sometimes "warp" around, and start at inconsistent places. In particular, watch 0:07 to 0:10. A tracer spawns travelling basically directly to the reticle, and then warps around. At full speed, given the speed with which tracers fade out, it looks like there are more tracers than there should be.



    In terms of solutions to this I think I'd need to know more about what's actually happening. I'm guessing that there's an animation that includes a tracer looking thing and then the actual tracer, but there's enough going on that doesn't jive with that story that I'm not at all sure.

    On balance, I think the high speed cooling mechanic needs to kick in at speeds attainable by a discjump from a standing start. I don't like the idea of it always performing at full capacity - it will still be overwhelming at close range unless the overheat damage is equivalent to getting hit with the bullet yourself.
     
    meph likes this.
  4. Rougey

    Rougey Instant Access

    Heat Mechanic worked well in Leejunz, it's worth a shot for this one.
     
    JayCakez, Triad and TylerMarket like this.
  5. The Weirdo

    The Weirdo Instant Access

    Thoughts from a non-ctf perspective:

    If arena is going to be balanced, a speed-related/cooldown mechanic for the cg would be really nice. Same goes for balancing any 1v1 situation in any gametype. Honor culture developed in part because of basic imbalances. I'd rather avoid honor in favor of balance, which implies a mechanic that makes the cg great at chasing speeds and weaker at dueling speeds.

    Unlike some, I really like the current rhythm of the cg. Spit a few bullets, full stream, fast reload, rhythm starts up again. Weapons with a rhythm to their damage output have really interesting implications in a game where fights are already dances.

    But what happens to that nice rhythm if we add in an overheat mechanic? I want that mechanic for balance. But will the cg then become clunky with yet another handicap to keep track of?
     
    Whitewhale and Fatima Shabazz like this.
  6. Whitewhale

    Whitewhale Instant Access

    Yeah I'm torn regarding reload / overheat

    Probably lean towards no reload but some overheat as th chain is brutal in duels and even worse stacked (2-3 cgs ends a heavy pretty fast)

    However it gets done it has to support chasing but not become overly dominant up close
     
    eman, Nastyhobbit and The Weirdo like this.
  7. fr3nzy0089[[DD]]vampire

    fr3nzy0089[[DD]]vampire Instant Access

    maybe just increase the spread a tiny bit?
     
    silverphish and XU1 like this.
  8. ellbee

    ellbee Instant Access

    i really don't like the reload mechanic, but as said before im sure it's just a placeholder. i would like the overheat mechanic, although your idea about self damage kicked me in the nuts.

    HOWEVER, t2 base showed how infuriating an increase in cg spread can be since you are totally relying on luck. ideally i would like to try both (self damage and increased spread).
     
    XU1 likes this.
  9. XU1

    XU1 Instant Access

    I'm happy with the chain gun. I wouldn't change it.
     
  10. miri

    miri Instant Access

    Reload mechanic sucks, if overheat balances the weapon to not be primary for duels but still powerful for chaining then that works for me. Agree that the spread on T2 base chaingun was idiotic, but I have no fear we'll see anything like that.
     
  11. widow

    widow Instant Access

    I disagree to all, chaingun is ok, balanced and atm no need modification. the actual "fast" reloading is to avoid chainwhore and can be twicked as necessary, maybe in case.

    I think in pre-alpha must create a solid bases without too many complicated stuff for balance the game without 1000 variables or, when we play base (100% completed) we must manage tons of variables interacting with each other.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2016
    modsec and XU1 like this.
  12. ellbee

    ellbee Instant Access

    i don't think this is a "omg you need to sort this now" thread, but a way ppl can discuss the future of the weapon and possible implementations.

    saying the cg is "ok" is not a lie, but it's also not ideal. it still has the same problem cg always had in tribes; in a 1v1 aerial duel situation it is the best weapon to use. this creates a pretty rigid meta, and is why it is part of every loadout in comp and heavily used. the only other weapon in every loadout is the disk/ring launcher. the key difference here is ma's and stuff are cool to pull off and cool to see.

    now on a personal level, i would be happy for the cg to be a carbon copy of the old skool version. im used to this meta and happy with it. however i think we have the chance, going forward, to question whether this is something worth changing.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2016
    eman, MastroLindo and miri like this.
  13. XU1

    XU1 Instant Access

    Disagree with cg being the best weapon to use in 1 vs 1 duel. Today I played on American server, and I had many duels with shivan. Shivan was chaining me most of the time, and I was discing. I found I won 60% of the duels we had. Every time shivan cged me, I'd strafe on the ground and disc him.

    Best weapon for duels is disc. Always had been. Ask anyone. Even in ctf, discing a capper sets you up for a good cg. Without disc, cg is useless.

    If you had evenly skilled players - disc will always beat cg.
     
  14. ellbee

    ellbee Instant Access

    thanks for explaining that strafing on the ground is a good way to avoid cg fire. i was referring to aerial combat and although i did not explicitly mention that in the post i did believe it was inferred. that is my mistake and i apologise for the confusion, i will edit the post.
     
  15. PROJ

    PROJ Private Tester

    historically speaking, the cg has always been unequivocally the best weapon in every tribes game, to the point where cg tracking aim was by far the most important skill in determining who won duels.

    CG in combat for midair is still really, ridiculously, insanely powerful. Even when it's not the weapon to use in a particular situation, the threat of cg dictates the entire fight, because as soon as you go into the air for a fraction of a second too long you can expect to lose over half your health in a moment.
     
  16. MastroLindo

    MastroLindo Instant Access

    and again: forcing you on the ground is a HUGE tactical advantage in duels. It's the tactic I was always using back in t1/t2c duels but still you had to have a very good dueller vs a mediocre chainer to win constantly. If CG were used/allowed in duels, considering equal skill level of the players, the guy that would not use the CG would most of the time lose
     
    The Weirdo and ellbee like this.
  17. HeaDCReePS

    HeaDCReePS Private Tester

    Balancing the chain for duels/arena and balancing it for CTF is a problem. You want a weak cg for duel/arena. There is too much punishment for leaving the ground against a strong cg. You want the game to be air duels and not hugging the ground. This is why the T1 community didn't use cg in duels. It wasn't any fun.

    CTF is a different story. You want a stronger cg. Dueling in CTF is not something you want to take long. Players are also moving much faster in CTF and attaining greater heights. It's a delicate balance for sure. I don't think you can balance the cg for both at the same time. I've played in several hundreds of T1 LT pickups against the 6 bullets to kill T1 cg. Last year we made it 7 or 8 bullets to kill and it made quite a difference. It was still strong but it lowered TTK by a lot. Standoffs lasted longer and it seemed like teamplay increased as well. You would still get hosed in 1v3 scenarios but that is to be expected. The thing about it was, it was much harder to turn 1v3s into a winning scenario. The longer it took to kill them, the more time they had to kill me. I kind of missed that power. But I do think the game was better off with a nerfed cg.

    tl;dr - I think CTF needs a strong cg. Nothing obnoxious but something that helps keep TTK from getting out of hand.
     
    meph and Nark like this.
  18. Whitewhale

    Whitewhale Instant Access

    Proj is correct , up close this gun is murder like it always has been

    That's why getting the balance between dueling and chasing is so critical , I can only imagine playing ho or Lo against great chainers really working the offence

    Overheat with perhaps no reload works pretty well here
     
  19. SoundGuy

    SoundGuy Private Tester

    I would like to see a change to the CG....

    It HAS to be strong for chase, but it needs to be toned down for Duel/1v1's.

    I really like the idea of "Overheat" like in TV (please don't shoot me).
    Make it tight spread (almost none) when moving fast but make it spread (Overheat) when strafing/standing still.

    More bullets/less reload I have to admit I am torn on the subject.
    I would start with just adding the "overheat" mechanic and go from there.
    Lets test! :)
     
    SeymourGore likes this.
  20. widow

    widow Instant Access

    This don't help LD... who defend flag atm has lack and add Overheat just increase this gap.
    In duel atm wins the best, and actually is not always CG.