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Endgame Content Creation Philosophy in the Context of Revives

Wicket329Wicket329 Posts: 3,108 ★★★★★
I think there are two ways to go about creating endgame content. Roadblocks and Sponges.

The original 6.2.6 Champion boss is an example of a potential Roadblock fight, because he had mechanics to zero out your damage and to regenerate himself throughout the fight. If you weren’t ready for him, you couldn’t spend your way past him. No amount of units would make you better at dexing his specials, for example. If you look back at RoL, Wolverine is a Roadblock fight because if you don’t have an answer to his regen, you can’t win that fight.

With the exception of Warlock, the EOP fights are Sponges. If you’re willing to throw enough revives at a fight, you could do it with a 1*. I mention RoL Wolverine as a Roadblock fight, the rest of RoL are Sponges. The challenge is a giant healthpool and juggling the mechanics long enough to get meaningful damage on the board. You can look at a Sponge fight and think “okay, I got 20% off that run, that was solid. Time to revive, heal up, and lop off another 20%,” and that’s a legitimate strategy.

Obviously both Roadblock and Sponge fights range in complexity, as you can see from the examples above. The bottom line is Sponges can be brute forced, Roadblocks can’t. So now it becomes a question of design perspective. Do you want content that cannot be beaten without specific roster and skill checks, or do you want content that you can incrementally chip away at? There’s no right or wrong answer here from an individual gameplay standpoint, but I think from a developer standpoint you want your fights to be able to be overcome if a player wants it badly enough. Otherwise you risk losing that player completely.

With that in mind, a change to the way players acquire and maintain revives is absolutely understandable. I could easily pick up 8-10 revives just autoplaying while at work because I have a constantly huge stash of energy refills. I like to think I’m pretty good at the game, and none of my EOP runs were overwhelmingly revive-spammy. But if Kabam plans to use Sponge design going forward, then an abundance of revives in the game just completely removes any aspect of challenge.

Now with ALL of that being said, I still think the proposed changes are the wrong way to go. But my complaint isn’t with the total number of revives that we’ll be able to hold at a given moment, it’s with the rate at which we acquire them. One a day with a 5% chance for a second one is painfully slow. Under the proposed changes, I’d have still been able to do EOP the same way I did, it just would’ve taken waaaaay longer. This doesn’t solve the problem, it just slows it down and makes me wait to play the new, fun, exciting content.

My proposed solution would be to change the way revives work in the inventory. Instead of the current system where you can hold 15 (19 w/ sigil) and the rest go into your stash until they expire, perhaps we triple the inventory size and do away with stash revives entirely. That way there is a hard cap on the number of revives a player can have on hand at any given moment. Players can still farm up to a healthy cap point, but because you can’t be actively playing two quests at a time, there will be a limit. Additionally, devs will know exactly how many revives players can have access to when designing content. Yes, people willing to spend units on revives will be able to bypass that cap, but that was and will always be the case. This at least solves the issue of taking a whole month to get a healthy stockpile of revives.

This was a slog of a post, but I hope y’all will give it a read and let me know what you think.

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    GeneralMerceGeneralMerce Posts: 236 ★★
    Awesome post! You have made a believer out of me
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    Wicket329Wicket329 Posts: 3,108 ★★★★★

    To me the issue comes down to being able to have fun playing a video game.

    They talk about revive spamming "trivializing content", but IMO you cannot triviialize a video game about people in colorful underwear and tights with names like Mole Man going pew pew pew at each other in a battle for virtual doodads that let you pew pew pew in more fights. This content is as trivial as life gets, akin to Hungry Hungry Hippos.

    Some people want to have fun, and maybe spamming revives to get through a Carina's Challenge was more fun than getting a third of the way and having to quit because they could not continue to revive (without spending). I don't know why having fun is so wrong.

    Honestly this is a totally legitimate position to take. The game should be fun, first and foremost. People can disagree pretty widely on what constitutes fun, and there’s a good-faith argument to be made that the accessibility of revives diminishes challenge, and therefore fun, for a lot of players.

    That’s why I tried to focus on the acquisition rate as the problem under the new proposed system. I think that we can all agree that having to wait a month due to revive collecting slowing to a crawl before being able to attempt new, difficult content isn’t fun.
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    KingInBlackKingInBlack Posts: 313 ★★★
    DNA3000 said:

    To me the issue comes down to being able to have fun playing a video game.

    They talk about revive spamming "trivializing content", but IMO you cannot triviialize a video game about people in colorful underwear and tights with names like Mole Man going pew pew pew at each other in a battle for virtual doodads that let you pew pew pew in more fights. This content is as trivial as life gets, akin to Hungry Hungry Hippos.

    Some people want to have fun, and maybe spamming revives to get through a Carina's Challenge was more fun than getting a third of the way and having to quit because they could not continue to revive (without spending). I don't know why having fun is so wrong.

    There's nothing wrong with that, but the game caters to many different kinds of players, and not all parts of it will cater to all people. If you don't like hypercompetitive war for example, you have to avoid it: Kabam is not going to remove it for you. And if you want to do content casually, there's tons of content where you can do that. But if that's how you define fun in the game, some parts of it will not work for you. The game also caters to players who want to struggle to accomplish things, or who want to test their skills, or who want difficult content because they are just that skilled, and anything less would be boring. The game has stuff for them as well, and in trying to keep all these different interests together in one game, compromises will have to be made.

    If this game is trivial to you, then it is trivial to you. But it doesn't have to be trivial to other people. They can choose to make this their primary hobby, they can choose to make this their primary social interaction, they can choose to make this the thing they emotionally invest in, and that's their right as well. The game is just a trivial bunch of pixels pretending to be people in color clothes in the same sense that sculptors are just playing with expensive Play Doh.
    And any of that has to do with the availability of revives in what way? He never said everyone has fun the same way or values the game the same, only that it's a game and should be fun.
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    DNA3000DNA3000 Posts: 18,827 Guardian

    DNA3000 said:

    To me the issue comes down to being able to have fun playing a video game.

    They talk about revive spamming "trivializing content", but IMO you cannot triviialize a video game about people in colorful underwear and tights with names like Mole Man going pew pew pew at each other in a battle for virtual doodads that let you pew pew pew in more fights. This content is as trivial as life gets, akin to Hungry Hungry Hippos.

    Some people want to have fun, and maybe spamming revives to get through a Carina's Challenge was more fun than getting a third of the way and having to quit because they could not continue to revive (without spending). I don't know why having fun is so wrong.

    There's nothing wrong with that, but the game caters to many different kinds of players, and not all parts of it will cater to all people. If you don't like hypercompetitive war for example, you have to avoid it: Kabam is not going to remove it for you. And if you want to do content casually, there's tons of content where you can do that. But if that's how you define fun in the game, some parts of it will not work for you. The game also caters to players who want to struggle to accomplish things, or who want to test their skills, or who want difficult content because they are just that skilled, and anything less would be boring. The game has stuff for them as well, and in trying to keep all these different interests together in one game, compromises will have to be made.

    If this game is trivial to you, then it is trivial to you. But it doesn't have to be trivial to other people. They can choose to make this their primary hobby, they can choose to make this their primary social interaction, they can choose to make this the thing they emotionally invest in, and that's their right as well. The game is just a trivial bunch of pixels pretending to be people in color clothes in the same sense that sculptors are just playing with expensive Play Doh.
    And any of that has to do with the availability of revives in what way? He never said everyone has fun the same way or values the game the same, only that it's a game and should be fun.
    If you actually read the post, he stated that the argument that anything can "trivialize the content" is invalid because the content is already maximally trivialized, and thus should be treated as such. My post was a response to the actual content of his post, unlike yours which seems to be deep in "you're not on my side so I will disagree with everything you say everywhere" territory.
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    AMS94AMS94 Posts: 1,776 ★★★★★
    Wicket329 said:

    I think there are two ways to go about creating endgame content. Roadblocks and Sponges.

    The original 6.2.6 Champion boss is an example of a potential Roadblock fight, because he had mechanics to zero out your damage and to regenerate himself throughout the fight. If you weren’t ready for him, you couldn’t spend your way past him. No amount of units would make you better at dexing his specials, for example. If you look back at RoL, Wolverine is a Roadblock fight because if you don’t have an answer to his regen, you can’t win that fight.

    With the exception of Warlock, the EOP fights are Sponges. If you’re willing to throw enough revives at a fight, you could do it with a 1*. I mention RoL Wolverine as a Roadblock fight, the rest of RoL are Sponges. The challenge is a giant healthpool and juggling the mechanics long enough to get meaningful damage on the board. You can look at a Sponge fight and think “okay, I got 20% off that run, that was solid. Time to revive, heal up, and lop off another 20%,” and that’s a legitimate strategy.

    Obviously both Roadblock and Sponge fights range in complexity, as you can see from the examples above. The bottom line is Sponges can be brute forced, Roadblocks can’t. So now it becomes a question of design perspective. Do you want content that cannot be beaten without specific roster and skill checks, or do you want content that you can incrementally chip away at? There’s no right or wrong answer here from an individual gameplay standpoint, but I think from a developer standpoint you want your fights to be able to be overcome if a player wants it badly enough. Otherwise you risk losing that player completely.

    With that in mind, a change to the way players acquire and maintain revives is absolutely understandable. I could easily pick up 8-10 revives just autoplaying while at work because I have a constantly huge stash of energy refills. I like to think I’m pretty good at the game, and none of my EOP runs were overwhelmingly revive-spammy. But if Kabam plans to use Sponge design going forward, then an abundance of revives in the game just completely removes any aspect of challenge.

    Now with ALL of that being said, I still think the proposed changes are the wrong way to go. But my complaint isn’t with the total number of revives that we’ll be able to hold at a given moment, it’s with the rate at which we acquire them. One a day with a 5% chance for a second one is painfully slow. Under the proposed changes, I’d have still been able to do EOP the same way I did, it just would’ve taken waaaaay longer. This doesn’t solve the problem, it just slows it down and makes me wait to play the new, fun, exciting content.

    My proposed solution would be to change the way revives work in the inventory. Instead of the current system where you can hold 15 (19 w/ sigil) and the rest go into your stash until they expire, perhaps we triple the inventory size and do away with stash revives entirely. That way there is a hard cap on the number of revives a player can have on hand at any given moment. Players can still farm up to a healthy cap point, but because you can’t be actively playing two quests at a time, there will be a limit. Additionally, devs will know exactly how many revives players can have access to when designing content. Yes, people willing to spend units on revives will be able to bypass that cap, but that was and will always be the case. This at least solves the issue of taking a whole month to get a healthy stockpile of revives.

    This was a slog of a post, but I hope y’all will give it a read and let me know what you think.

    I like where u're trying to go with this but this idea heavily relies on the belief that the devs will be able to, & more importantly, willing to design content that can be done by most players in 40-50 revives

    Most content doesn't require 40+ revives but every once in a while we get something that goes hard at being a sponge.....eg. the Abyss, the Labyrinth, & the Carina Challenges. Basically any content that acts as the gateway to next big progression level.
    Similar content in the future will make that 45 inventory cap look inadequate, with no means to acquire more revives except by units

    We already get sponge style content when the limit is just 15......Who knows the sponge won't get more porous with a higher inventory limit
    With 3x limit they might think it's fine to design content that drains 3x more revives

    It will give them the incentive to design content that requires a lot more revives, knowing that players will be forced to use their unit stash for every revive beyond 45.......which is exactly what they are trying to do with this restriction on 3.2.6 farming
    It will lead us back to where we are now.....them wanting us to use wallets on sponges & us refusing to do so
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    GiuliameijGiuliameij Posts: 1,849 ★★★★
    We know farming the way we did is going to end. But I honostly think that by just adding 1 garanteed revive in the new quest can help a lot of players.
    So both the easy and hard quest get a garanteed revive. With that you can have 3 garanteed revives a day. 2 from the quest and 1 from the 22h mission. If you start with a full stash of 15, that will mean you can get 3x14 revives before they expire. This comes down to roughly 57 (say 60 because of free 4h crystals) free revives that have only cost you energy and time.
    That number in my eyes is enough to continue to make the same kind of content they do now. Because the more skilled players can complete the quests with 60 free revives. But players who normally spam but do not have the skill will still have to either get extra revives by more time invested (units--> arena) or money.
    But almost any player can do a completion run of the content. Exploration will slow down.

    However. True roadblock places in the game would be my preference. Not a new abyss type where you die automatically with your 6* r4 because of a node regardless of what you do. But 1 or 2 defenders per path that require a very specific counter or playstyle. But I might be in the minority here.
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    GiuliameijGiuliameij Posts: 1,849 ★★★★
    Just realised I made the error of calculating with 14 days instead of 10 for revive quests. So it would be 49 revives. Or roughly 50. Which I still think would be reasonable for content completion on release and slowing down exploration.
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    BLEEDlNG_DGEBLEEDlNG_DGE Posts: 324 ★★
    Wicket329 said:

    I think there are two ways to go about creating endgame content. Roadblocks and Sponges.

    The original 6.2.6 Champion boss is an example of a potential Roadblock fight, because he had mechanics to zero out your damage and to regenerate himself throughout the fight. If you weren’t ready for him, you couldn’t spend your way past him. No amount of units would make you better at dexing his specials, for example. If you look back at RoL, Wolverine is a Roadblock fight because if you don’t have an answer to his regen, you can’t win that fight.

    With the exception of Warlock, the EOP fights are Sponges. If you’re willing to throw enough revives at a fight, you could do it with a 1*. I mention RoL Wolverine as a Roadblock fight, the rest of RoL are Sponges. The challenge is a giant healthpool and juggling the mechanics long enough to get meaningful damage on the board. You can look at a Sponge fight and think “okay, I got 20% off that run, that was solid. Time to revive, heal up, and lop off another 20%,” and that’s a legitimate strategy.

    Obviously both Roadblock and Sponge fights range in complexity, as you can see from the examples above. The bottom line is Sponges can be brute forced, Roadblocks can’t. So now it becomes a question of design perspective. Do you want content that cannot be beaten without specific roster and skill checks, or do you want content that you can incrementally chip away at? There’s no right or wrong answer here from an individual gameplay standpoint, but I think from a developer standpoint you want your fights to be able to be overcome if a player wants it badly enough. Otherwise you risk losing that player completely.

    With that in mind, a change to the way players acquire and maintain revives is absolutely understandable. I could easily pick up 8-10 revives just autoplaying while at work because I have a constantly huge stash of energy refills. I like to think I’m pretty good at the game, and none of my EOP runs were overwhelmingly revive-spammy. But if Kabam plans to use Sponge design going forward, then an abundance of revives in the game just completely removes any aspect of challenge.

    Now with ALL of that being said, I still think the proposed changes are the wrong way to go. But my complaint isn’t with the total number of revives that we’ll be able to hold at a given moment, it’s with the rate at which we acquire them. One a day with a 5% chance for a second one is painfully slow. Under the proposed changes, I’d have still been able to do EOP the same way I did, it just would’ve taken waaaaay longer. This doesn’t solve the problem, it just slows it down and makes me wait to play the new, fun, exciting content.

    My proposed solution would be to change the way revives work in the inventory. Instead of the current system where you can hold 15 (19 w/ sigil) and the rest go into your stash until they expire, perhaps we triple the inventory size and do away with stash revives entirely. That way there is a hard cap on the number of revives a player can have on hand at any given moment. Players can still farm up to a healthy cap point, but because you can’t be actively playing two quests at a time, there will be a limit. Additionally, devs will know exactly how many revives players can have access to when designing content. Yes, people willing to spend units on revives will be able to bypass that cap, but that was and will always be the case. This at least solves the issue of taking a whole month to get a healthy stockpile of revives.

    This was a slog of a post, but I hope y’all will give it a read and let me know what you think.

    PERSONALLY, I feel that "sponge" designs like RoL (save for Wolverine) should be the foundation of most content. What I mean is that most pieces of content released should allow anyone with enough skill and patience to be able to complete it. I adopted this belief after seeing a gamer take on the challenge of exploring the entirety of God of War without a single upgrade... on the highest difficulty. Another example was when a Tekken developer selected the weakest character and cleared the game on the highest difficulty without dying to prove to the player base that it was possible after being accused of designing a character that was unplayable.
    Sure, it takes years of skill and incalculable amounts of practice and patience but it is factually doable.

    This brings me to content like Carina challenges where no amount of skill, practice or patience can get you past it. I don't think such content should ever exist or reap such significant rewards unless explicitly stated that it's catered for spenders. To remove the option to grind revives when there's content that's literally impossible to do without that option and call it "being trivialized" is nonsensical to ME. Nobody is trivializing that content, Kabam just made it so it is a money sucking event but didn't count on players finding a FAIR way to avoid spending. That's why boss fights like Champion, Grandmaster, Act 7 Kang and such remain my favourites because jumping in, they are challenging and can get expensive but with enough practice and patience they are doable with little to no cost.

    Roadblocks in the game should be very few and far between. One fight or story segment that everyone knows needs special circumstances to overcome eg. RoL Wolverine. That would then justify eliminating a revive farm loophole.

    That's just me though.
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