Ideas for a new/better pvp system

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seventhcross
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Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by seventhcross »

Okay, so it's no secret that Ryme has never really been thrilled with how PVP turned out for TH. I was bored the other day and started thinking of what would make it more interesting. Here is what I came up with.

1) I'd like to see a skill or item that generates one free pvp match per day. If you can do one match that won't require time I think more people would be inclined to try out pvp mode.

2) a new system.
  • I'd like to see this based more on your class. For example each class could get a bonus to a specific type of attack.
  • New attacks. This might not be a big deal for some people, but rock/paper/scissors doesn't really feel like pvp to me. I'd like to see something more like: Weapon Attack/Spell Attack/Defensive Attack/Charge (or Focus) Attack. I'm not sure attacks need to be "which is stronger than the other" I'd prefer to just see the attack. Defensive type attacks would of course boost your defenses for a turn but make your attack less powerful, Charge would either be a reckless attack that worked the opposite of defensive or else be a charge up attack where you spend a turn building power to do a more powerful attack on the next round.
  • Items. In this type of format, I'd like to see items being the key to customization.
    • Everyone would have base stats that were the same (possibly slightly modified by class choice). Then with the purchase of items, stats would be adjusted with the bonuses the items give. Some would be stronger defense or attack, others might give more hp or other bonuses.
    • Another item based idea would be items whose power degraded or improved based on the number of rounds you fought. Some would start out weak, but get more and more powerful the longer the fight lasted, others would start out more powerful, but become weaker as the fight progressed.
    • The final item idea I had was elemental damage and resistance. We have this in the regular game, it only made sense to me to have it in PVP. It would be kinda neat to me if some of the items would give you an affinity with a certain element, giving you resist to it and damage from it, but making you weaker to a different type of element.
  • PVP superpower. This last one kinda springs from an idea I had for the game previously that never really went anywhere. The idea is that you would be able to pick a superpower for your arena personality that would give you a bonus for your fights. Examples might be
    • Speedster: one extra attack at some point during the fight.
    • Regeneration: Percentage of HP healed at one point during the fight.
    • Blaster: Bonus to spell damage.
    • Brick: Bonus to defense.
    • Brawler: Bonus to attack with weapons.
These ideas might be terrible, I'm no good at coding and I don't know what type of PVP Ryme or anyone else is really interested in, but I thought that getting a good discussion started was the best way to learn what people are looking for.
Feel free to tear it apart looking for flaws and ask questions and make suggestions. It's still basically just a loose concept I started tossing around in my head. I'd like to hear what others think about it, particularly if they can help me improve it.
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by Ryme »

Those are almost universally good suggestions, 7. Lots of good flavor, and some interesting coordination with superhero themes.

#1 is particularly good, and I may go out of my way to try to work that in.

In my defense, my original plans did include some higher tier and more complicated equipment, and then at some point I hit the "it's good enough" wall, which is the death of improvements.

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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by Lxndr »

Since a lambda token has a pretty nice autosell value, any sort of 'free' pvp fight could affect no-chips/items runs.

But yes, if I had at least one free pvp fight a day, I'd probably at least dip into it more.

(That feels like a good skill for the subscription jacket... too bad this suggestion didn't come a few months earlier)
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by seventhcross »

Ryme wrote:Those are almost universally good suggestions, 7. Lots of good flavor, and some interesting coordination with superhero themes.

#1 is particularly good, and I may go out of my way to try to work that in.

In my defense, my original plans did include some higher tier and more complicated equipment, and then at some point I hit the "it's good enough" wall, which is the death of improvements.
"almost universally"? XD
I'm not sure exactly what that means... could you perhaps expound on the parts that you think need improvements? That way I will know what direction to start working in.
Also, no need to defend yourself. You put plenty of work into this game, I just know this was one area you were never really happy with, and I began thinking about what would be good improvements for it. I figured it might be a little less work for you, at least as far as designing it went. I have no skills at coding since I've never been exposed to it before...
Lxndr wrote:Since a lambda token has a pretty nice autosell value, any sort of 'free' pvp fight could affect no-chips/items runs.

But yes, if I had at least one free pvp fight a day, I'd probably at least dip into it more.

(That feels like a good skill for the subscription jacket... too bad this suggestion didn't come a few months earlier)
Indeed, it may affect any type of runs, but since it is something anyone can get, it will affect everyone the same. Though, you do have to win in order to get the token....
I'd definitely prefer it not be an IotM type of skill though, it should be something everyone can get access to so that everyone is encouraged to try it out.
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by TheK3vin »

It was good that you got it out at all, and it's certainly better than KoL's current system ^_^

I had a lot of fun messing with it when it came out, even if it was a wee bit wonky.

Some of those changes would really make it engaging again though!

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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by seventhcross »

Thorak wrote:Just a question, doesn't PvP fights normally involve your normal fighting capabilities like to hit/dodge/stats and so on?

I was a bit surprised when I found out the PvP system was like a totally different game where my normal game stats didn't matter.
I believe the stats were taken out of the equation to give everyone a fair shot. Equal footing, no IotM boosters, High leveled characters aren't going to trounce newbies, etc, etc, etc... Also explains why someone with a rank above 500 would not be able to target someone below 300, trying to keep it as balanced as possible. Although , one thing I would like to see is PVP legal items dropped in game by some of the enemies. Even if it was as a semi-rare only. It would help tie the two together and it's not like you can't use PVP items in the game already anyway, if you chose to. I remember getting the white jump suit from the arena with one of my alts, just so I could put it on to go patrolling in.
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by Ryme »

Thorak wrote:Just a question, doesn't PvP fights normally involve your normal fighting capabilities like to hit/dodge/stats and so on?
Mainly because if they did, Cristiona and Questionario would have simply won every fight, because they had old, high-level accounts. I could have instituted level-based brackets, but it still meant the highest level account would be nigh unbeatable. Figured being self-contained actually gave it better potential for wider participation.
seventhcross wrote: Although , one thing I would like to see is PVP legal items dropped in game by some of the enemies.
Heh, yeah, I meant to do some of that, too. Mostly the other way (give adventurers a reason to branch out into PvP for a few items), but by the time I would have gotten to that, I'd decided PvP needed more of a rework than just some extra items for polish.

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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by seventhcross »

Ryme wrote:
Thorak wrote:Just a question, doesn't PvP fights normally involve your normal fighting capabilities like to hit/dodge/stats and so on?
Mainly because if they did, Cristiona and Questionario would have simply won every fight, because they had old, high-level accounts. I could have instituted level-based brackets, but it still meant the highest level account would be nigh unbeatable. Figured being self-contained actually gave it better potential for wider participation.
Just had a thought for here... The arena should include a description of the character having to wear a talisman that drains them of their normal powers, or undergoing some process that temporarily strips them of their normal powers, before getting to fight. As a simple story way of putting everyone on "equal footing" and to help explain that it is a separate event from the normal mode of play.
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by seventhcross »

So, Kinak has the reins now, and he's implemented Idea #1. Huzzah! Progress on a better PVP!
There's also a note in PVP that says "Note that PvP will be substantially reworked in the future." Which is also good.

I've been feeling itchy about this thread, so I'm going to scratch it again. All the feedback so far has been positive, which pleases me. I'm going to move forward and try to start laying foundations for mechanics. I'll be leaving all the actual number workings up to Kinak, Ryme and whoever else they allow to be involved with it, whenever they do get around to working on this project. (I know it's on a back burner with things like Quests and Leagues taking priority currently, but I want to mess around with my ideas anyway.) As before, I'll be looking for feedback and suggestions to improve my ideas.

So, to start with a foundation we need the stats that would be necessary for the match. I'd like it to be pretty transparent to make customizing easier, so I'd forgo things like Strength, Intellect, and Reflexes. I can only think of 5 stats that would be useful for a fight. I've come up with 5 myself. HP is the most important, as it will be used to determine who wins. I'm thinking that whoever has the higher damage percentage on them will be declared the loser if the fight reaches a certain number of rounds. After that comes the attack and defense abilities. I'd like to see a to hit modifier vs a dodge mod, and a damage mod vs a resistance mod. I think this is basically how combat already works in the game, this would of course have to be separate from those mechanics, but should work basically the same. Since this is PVP, I don't think it's really necessary to completely dodge attacks, instead, an attack that fails to hit by the dodge mechanics would have its damage reduced to half.

That's five stats that can be modified by equipment, which is probably enough for starting out. Though I think we could have some that boosts certain types of attacks as well. (Weapon, Spell, Defensive, and Charge) Which would give us 9, possibly ten if we create a Focus attack too.

Starting with classes:
Gadgeteer: Bonus X to Hit, Bonus Y to Dodge, Bonus on Weapon attacks.
Naturalist: Bonus X to Resistance, Bonus Y to HP, Bonus on Charge attacks.
Psion: Bonus X to Dodge, Bonus Y to Damage, Bonus on Spell attacks.
Elementalist: Bonus X to Damage, Bonus Y to HP, Slightly reduced bonus to each attack? Or regular boost to Defensive or Focus attacks? I'm undecided about this one.
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by Satan »

I'd like to see an rts mini-game pvp option >.> Except it wouldn't really be real time. Click time strategy? Whatever. Age of Twilight >.>
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by seventhcross »

Well, thanks for the uninspiring post, Satan. Was that an attempt at humor? :? It's hard to tell from your post. If you don't mind, I'd like to try and keep this thread on track for its purpose, please refrain from posts that won't further its goal. Thanks! :wink:

Moving forward.
Items have basically the same slots in PVP as there are in the normal game. Shirt and Pants have been eliminated, leaving just the full-body slot, and we have only 1 Accessory instead of the normal two, but I can live with these options. It does keep things simpler, which is always better for starting off. It's better to add the complexity in stages, just to be sure everything is working the way we want it to.

I'd like to start off with the Accessory slot being the only slot for Elemental Affinity items. As stated in the first post, this would give you a bonus to damage and resistance for one element, while giving you a penalty to resistance from another element. We have 6 elements, so this could be done in one of two ways. We could do pairs such as Fire & Ice where a bonus to one would give a penalty to its opposing element. Other examples would be Psychic & Sonic, Acid & Electric. Or, we could do a round-robin type where each element is strong against the next one down the line. For example: fire > ice > acid > sonic > psychic > electric > fire. Personally, I prefer pairs over round-robin, but either could work fine.

For the other slots, Id' like to start with a simple set of stat buff items. Giving one item per slot for each stat would be five sets. If that seems to much, perhaps we could divide them into HP, Attack, and Defense bonuses. This would probably work best if each slot was designated as either a Hit/Dodge slot, or a Damage/Resistance slot Rather than having a slot give bonuses to both Hit and Damage, or Dodge and Resistance. With six remaining slots, we should be able to divide them up evenly.
  • Head- Hit/Dodge
  • Body- Damage/Resistance
  • Main hand- Hit/Dodge
  • Offhand- Damage/Resistance
  • Gloves- Damage/Resistance
  • Boots- Hit/Dodge
That's a little arbitrary, but it should fit well enough, if we decide to go this route for starting off. We can make the armor something like spiked armor for a damage bonus as an example.
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by Satan »

Everyone loves mmo rts games, right? This would just be slightly slower >.>
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by acidcat »

Thorak wrote:Personally, I prefer the pvp system in KoL compared to Twilight, with the exception of stealing items/stats. Maybe I missed something? But as it stands now it is just pure luck who wins, with the person having better eq having a huge advantage. PvP doesn't really give any rewards either, would be fun if you could get chips/xp/stats/items useful in the real game from winning.
I wholeheartedly agree with Thorak. (Except I don't know anything about KoL PvP)

At the moment PvP is a sideshow which isn't at all linked to the real game (other than lambda tokens which can be sold for 100 chips). It may as well be a different game on a different website.

The need to strip out our normal equipment mainly came from huge differences in power (level) and equipment - i.e. to stop level 100 behemoths beating up on level 4 newbs. I have some suggestions how you could stop this:

1) Limit who you can fight by strength. Maybe make it so there is a retconners league (lvl 11 and below), then 12-25, 26-50, 51-100, 100+? I know Ryme said this wouldn't be feasible because level 11 players would win the retconners league etc, but the game is fluid, level 11 people would soon be level 1 after retcon. Or only make your stats and equipment minimally adjust your pvp character.

2) Make it so you can fight vastly dissimilar stats, but if the level 100 wins they're rewarded so little it's pointless, but if the level 4 wins they hit the jackpot.

3) Make it so fights kinda carry through (so a level 4 may fight a level 100 and lose massively, but they can chip away at the level 100 energy/HP to eventually win). This would be useful combined with my idea 2.

If the plan is to keep PvP as it currently is equipment wise, then I'm afraid I don't have many constructive suggestions, other than to echo what other people have said: make equipment in PvP useful in the main game and some of the equipment useful in PvP only available by playing the main game. And make rewards transferrable between the two elements. I think maybe some of the camp activities could rationally improve your PvP abilities at the same time (in terms of storyline).

Also I do like a lot of the original ideas from 7thcross, at the moment the fact PvP is pretty much pure luck and minimal complexity is off-putting.

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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by seventhcross »

Awesome, some real feedback! Great to hear from you guys, thanks for your input!

I've never played PVP in KOL either, so I can't really speak to how that end works. I, personally, like that the PVP matches are kept more equal, even if that makes them somewhat separate from the main game. One of the goals I have in coming up with these ideas is to tie it in to the main game more closely. I want the classes to affect the PVP side, kind of like how it affects regular game play. I want to see a wider selection of items that can be crossed from PVP to regular mode and vice versa. I think the Elemental Affinity items would be a great first start. Plus, if the mechanics for fighting in PVP are kept fairly close to the mechanics for fighting on patrol, it should be even easier to have some crossover between certain items.

I do like the idea of earning XP for doing PVP, that was something I hadn't thought of and it makes a lot of sense. If I'm training myself in fighting with other heroes, I should be gaining some knowledge about how to fight villains as well. And it wouldn't really detract too much from the game, since it still costs turns to do, it should only be a matter of how much and if it scales at all or not.

I also want to move on to the Superpowers. What powers do you want to see available to choose for your PVP character?
I listed a few ideas in the initial post and I thought I'd expand on it now that I have an idea for how the mechanics could work.
  • Super Speed: An extra attack per fight might be nice, but it translates into extra damage more than anything else. That could be a simple mechanic that has a build up for damage that is unleashed all at once in the extra attack. It could also be used as a damage bonus every round instead, if that's easier to manage. It would also work well for a dodge bonus, as speedsters are known best for being hard to hit.
  • Regeneration: This would actually work best as a resistance bonus that "heals" you every round for the amount of damage it would have prevented.
  • Blaster: Bonus to Damage with Spell Attacks
  • Brick: Bonus to Resistance
  • Brawler: Bonus to Hit with Weapon Attacks
  • Teleport: Bonus to Hit and/or Dodge
  • Flight: Bonus to Hit with Charge Attacks
  • Phasing: Bonus to Defensive Attacks
Any other ideas? I know there's plenty more out there...
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by Cristiona »

I always liked how Twelve Sands did PvP, but that involved copious amounts of... um... AJAX? Yeah, I think it was that. They had a live, turn-based combat system. Of course, if nobody was online, you couldn't fight anyone.
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by Satan »

Did someone say AJAX? My middle name is AJAX. Or am I AJAXMan? Captain AJAX? ... Hmmm.
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by seventhcross »

Never played 12 Sands, and I know nothing about AJAX, so that isn't useful to me. :oops:

I like turn based, live combats. Though there are pretty many problems therein. As mentioned, the biggest is having people on during the same time as you. Not sure our player base is quite large enough for that, at this time. Also, I hate when people quit in the middle of a fight because they are losing. It can be worked out system wise, I've seen some where the computer takes control and some where they simply forfeit, but it's still not a very fun thing to have happen.
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by Ryme »

AJAX is basically Javascript to make things interactive and realtime. It wasn't something I was ever good at, and part of the reason I never attempted live/realtime PvP. That plus the other problems you mention, like people bailing if a fight isn't going their way - I didn't know how to enforce it coming to a conclusion for the winner. Plus, as Cris mentioned, the problem that if you're limited to the people logged in, it drastically cuts your PvP choices. So I picked something that was definitely a bit too much on the simple and random side, with hopes to improve it later.

I definitely always had dreams for more items, some of which would cross over between PvP and normal adventuring.

In retrospect, I have no idea why I didn't just automatically include some XP in the PvP matches. There's enough to the flow of the quests that a little XP here wouldn't have hurt anything, and it might have made it a more interesting option for a way to do a little leveling while also grabbing a few other items.

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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by Kinak »

Glad to see this thread moving along :)

As I've mentioned before, a PvP revamp is definitely coming eventually, it's just after Leagues for a variety of reasons. I'm not going to have a ton of brain power to devote to this until Leagues are out, but figured I'd drop in my two chips.

For what it's worth, simultaneous PvP isn't on the menu. It's certainly technologically feasible, but I just don't feel it's a good fit with the rest of the game.

Ryme's absolutely right about it needing some crossover items and rewards. I don't want to get too into that until everything gets settled, though.

There will be some serious reconsideration of how the combat itself is handled (particularly for the non-active player). I'm not sure how that'll work yet, but there a number of good options.

We'll also definitely see some middle term goals. Climbing the ELO board is cool, but the system needs something like a week-long board or tournament with its own rewards. That sort of structure will make all the difference in the world.

That's the very sketchy outline of what I'm thinking right now. I apologize for the vague-ness, but I'm pretty sure all of those concepts will last through to the revamp, so at least I'm probably not lying :)

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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by acidcat »

Kinak wrote: Climbing the ELO board is cool, but the system needs something like a week-long board or tournament with its own rewards. That sort of structure will make all the difference in the world.
This kind of thing would be a huge improvement. At the moment other than for cool there is no advantage to getting a high score, and it means you don't get to fight as many people: i.e. actual disincentive

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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by Patojonas »

Dunno if with the changes our ranks will be reset, but if they aren't then the first thing to fix will be subtracting 100*#completed runs from everyone's lifetime boards, people atm get 100 points for each run even if they never pvp in their life :|

I have to say I like 7th's ideas a lot, they'd certainly add much more complexity to the fights.
Unlike acidcat, I believe arena statuses should be separated from the patrolling ones, that's the only thing that is working fine at the moment, all heroes start evenly matched.

I find the idea of a tournament great but that'll need realtime fights to make any sense. Or it could be the one who gets to X rank first since the beginning of the tournament, with a limited number of tournament matches, wins? Anyway, some kind of weekly event would benefit game retention, currently the only weekly event is the Meat Sink of Justice :P

Also, currently there's a barrier separating players below and above rank 300, I suppose a couple more tiers would be useful to separate players? The way it is now, if an high rank player gets attack by a much lower rank player and looses the penalty for the attacked player is much greater than the contrary, which makes sense but not on the current proportions. Dunno how things will be after the changes but currently a rank 1500-2000 players already has the necessary gears to take out everyone, so said players should fight in equal terms with player with higher ranks when it comes to victory/defeat rank change calculations.

Moreover, since retcon was released, a player with all the gears will go back to 100 when he/she retcons and wreak havoc among newbies, so there should definitely be progressive rank requirements to equip better gears (maybe associated with those tiers I mentioned before?), like with the creepy old man equipment.

It be interesting if players who reached a certain rank were allowed into a special zone or training location as a reward for making it that far.
Spoiler: show
On top of all this, have Coca Cola or some other big brand sponsor the arena for the monthly cost of the servers :P

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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by seventhcross »

So glad to see this thread starting to pick up some extra responses! Particularly from Ryme and Kinak! :) Though I was hoping more people would put in ideas for Items or Superpowers...
Kinak wrote:As I've mentioned before, a PvP revamp is definitely coming eventually, it's just after Leagues for a variety of reasons. I'm not going to have a ton of brain power to devote to this until Leagues are out, but figured I'd drop in my two chips.
How are Leagues coming, by the way?
Kinak wrote:For what it's worth, simultaneous PvP isn't on the menu. It's certainly technologically feasible, but I just don't feel it's a good fit with the rest of the game.
Totally fine with this!
Kinak wrote:Ryme's absolutely right about it needing some crossover items and rewards. I don't want to get too into that until everything gets settled, though.

There will be some serious reconsideration of how the combat itself is handled (particularly for the non-active player). I'm not sure how that'll work yet, but there a number of good options.
As I said, it definitely needs to start simple and work its way to becoming more complex. Getting the right system for combat will be the biggest thing to improve PVP, so that really has to come first. I do look forward to having XP rewards for fighting, and crossover items, but the system definitely has to work well first.
Kinak wrote:We'll also definitely see some middle term goals. Climbing the ELO board is cool, but the system needs something like a week-long board or tournament with its own rewards. That sort of structure will make all the difference in the world.
Tournaments? Huzzah! I do love the sound of that!
Kinak wrote:That's the very sketchy outline of what I'm thinking right now. I apologize for the vague-ness, but I'm pretty sure all of those concepts will last through to the revamp, so at least I'm probably not lying :)
No apologies accepted! Your work is fine, vagaries are acceptable at least until you actually start working on it. Though it would be nice to get a feel for how you are leaning currently for the combat system. It would help with me putting ideas together. :)
Patojonas wrote:Also, currently there's a barrier separating players below and above rank 300, I suppose a couple more tiers would be useful to separate players? The way it is now, if an high rank player gets attack by a much lower rank player and looses the penalty for the attacked player is much greater than the contrary, which makes sense but not on the current proportions.

Moreover, since retcon was released, a player with all the gears will go back to 100 when he/she retcons and wreak havoc among newbies, so there should definitely be progressive rank requirements to equip better gears (maybe associated with those tiers I mentioned before?), like with the creepy old man equipment.

It be interesting if players who reached a certain rank were allowed into a special zone or training location as a reward for making it that far.
I do like the ideas Pato presents as well. More tiers isn't a bad thing, though I like the idea of cross-tier challenging, but maybe limited to the lower level having to initiate it. Thus players who are on the cusp can try to challenge higher tier players for that extra little bump needed to reach the next tier. And the rank requirements for gear is a good point as well, since that used to be handled by the number of fights you had won. Now it is a wholly different issue. And a new zone/location, or even a special store for players of high rank would be an awesome incentive to get people into PVPing.
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Re: Ideas for a new/better pvp system

Post by Cristiona »

seventhcross wrote:How are Leagues coming, by the way?
Coming along nicely. Laying out the ground work and such.
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