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Thread: Predators as a balance mechanic

  1. #1
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    Predators as a balance mechanic

    Same as the title reads. So over time as ive gotten better at marine maining ive went from hating preds, to being generally excited when theyre found in a round. They are generally the toughest match up you can look for in cm. Takes as many pbs as a queen to kill(more if healing), move faster then god, and have a kit that includes weapons that just happen to block buckshot. Preds have the odds heavily in their favor and draw out skilled players. In doing so they end up removing some of these skilled players from seeing combat with xenos. Clearly this can help a struggling hive.

    As of current(more experienced people feel free to correct me) preds roll at some given chance like 10 or 15% chance of spawn per round. What im proposing is that upon a given set amount of marine or xeno majors create a 100% chance of spawn. Add in a flavor text letting the preds know that "this is a highly regarded human fighting force" or "this is a widely feared hive", and give the assignment to focus more on the side thats steamrolling for 3 rounds in a row. Im not talking about giving a mandate to commit to total war with one side or the other, but rather that just having preds hang around the marine force will inevitably draw out the robust fighters to meet them in combat.

    Its legacy code that already exists and I believe would require minimal work to implement. I also think its a step above regular balancing techniques, in that its virtually impossible to balance a game this complex across all skill levels. This is simply a form of a catch all for the more skilled players using existing stuff.

    The xeno part im a little more hesitant about. A marine fighting a pred is tough, you generally have to be a fair skill level higher to win. Right now a xeno fighting a pred solo is almost impossible. A few days ago I had a round and a particually skilled pred was in game. I was playing a sent and just messing around trying to dodge his punches without striking back. It pretty quickly became clear the player was far far more skilled then me and could generally hit me at will. This is fine, im a new xeno and plently of players out class me. In my head I was like "ok ive seen pred xeno duels a few months ago. He needs 3 hits to kill me and I need 45 or so." At this point I dont think I could have even traded strike for strike so I backed off. Later I asked a mod about how many strikes it would have taken to kill the player and the number they came back with was 200. I would have to have hit this significantly better player about 200 times and get hit less then 3 to win the fight.

    Now for the balance idea to work on both sides, it has to be at least semi possible to fight a pred as a xeno and win. I think this has to do with the recent slash damage reduction. Im not sure if its possible to add extra damage to a slash when v. predator, or how much work would go into maintaining current status but fixing this one issue.

    TLDR, preds can be utilized as a very successful game balance mechanic using existing coding in a way that will primarily effect skilled players in a player optional fashion.

  2. #2
    Whitelisted Synthetic
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    A big problem regarding xenos side is that queens often forbid fighting with predators if they're around. Honestly I completely understand the order, because losing xenos to predators means you have less to fight with against the marines, for no beneficial purpose really. Killing a predator doesn't really HELP the xenos. If a marine kills a predator, he can get some strong loot, researchers can get green blood, etc. The only potential benefit is capturing a predator for the predalien, but in the majority of xeno-predator fights the xenos end up killing the predator before there's a chance to infect, or the predator just runs away leaving potentially dead xenos for absolutely no benefit.

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    Member Unknownity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Minimike View Post
    A big problem regarding xenos side is that queens often forbid fighting with predators if they're around. Honestly I completely understand the order, because losing xenos to predators means you have less to fight with against the marines, for no beneficial purpose really. Killing a predator doesn't really HELP the xenos. If a marine kills a predator, he can get some strong loot, researchers can get green blood, etc. The only potential benefit is capturing a predator for the predalien, but in the majority of xeno-predator fights the xenos end up killing the predator before there's a chance to infect, or the predator just runs away leaving potentially dead xenos for absolutely no benefit.
    not to mention preds currently cannot go in hard crit so capturing one for infection as xeno is nearly impossible
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    Senior Member GenericUsername's Avatar
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    Make getting an abom slightly easier and sure this could work I guess
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    Super Moderator Ugnip55's Avatar
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    I wouldn't mind more pred rounds here and there. The chance for a pred round is 20% base. I still think this would be a cool idea, though.
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  6. #6
    Whitelist Council Member ChainsawMullet's Avatar
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    Preds aren't a balancing mechanic, nor should they be, they're set at a hard 20% chance and that shouldn't change.


    Gigabeast ChainsawMullet seen dodging discord bans that would result in whitelist suspensions.



    Who the fuck does this guy play????

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    Chainsaw can you elaborate on why they shouldnt be used as a balance mechanic? I believe the way I proposed would have little drawback, being that its always optional for a marine to fight a pred.

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    Whitelist Council Member ChainsawMullet's Avatar
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    Because being punished for playing the side that's winning is bad as a concept.

    Imagine this, you just got off work and hop on CM, a new round just started so you join as xeno. Marines deploy and you fight for a lil bit, maybe get 1 or 2 kills. Then a predator comes out and attacks you, killing you. You later find out the Predator was being OOCly encouraged to hunt xenos over marines because for the last 3 rounds that you weren't involved in, xenos won.

    Now imagine that on a larger scale, and it gets stupid.

    As a councillor for this whitelist I can tell you with 100% certainty that most preds aren't going to "hunt the robustos", in fact most of them run away when they see them come on screen. All this will do is make rounds more suffocating for people who don't care about hunting preds and just want to HvX.

    Also, it's never optional for a marine or a xeno to fight a pred. If you're given the option, the pred is being nice. But if the pred wants to fight you you're not getting out of it, so you're either going to die running or die unwillingly fighting back.


    Gigabeast ChainsawMullet seen dodging discord bans that would result in whitelist suspensions.



    Who the fuck does this guy play????

  9. #9
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    Fair enough, my experience has been that most pred players will generally only fight the willing. Im not part of the white list so I dont know the nuances of what is and isnt permitted. If it was used in a such a way that it was basically open killing season for humans then yeah I can see how this would end terribly. My idea relies on predator players only engaging the willing or those targeting them. If pred whitelisted players did indeed only target the willing then I think this idea would hold weight.

    On that point, In the last 2 years its been incredibly rare to see a pred openly hunt a player that didnt want to fight back. Maybe its time for a rule change? We have no real shortage of players that wish to actively fight predators.

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    Whitelisted Captain Fortelian's Avatar
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    One thing I do as a predator, is never fight someone who doesn't want it. However, I know from experience some preds don't care. In my opinion, if you don't want to fight me, you shouldn't have to. OOCly encouraging preds to kill one side is just gonna make them target weaker players, because, like chainsaw said, they'll just run away when they see robust names, unless they're willing to end their own round. However, I am glad to give someone a fun fight, or a wacky out-of-the-ordinary experience that they won't usually get, whenever I play predator. It's the positive interactions you want to build with players, as opposed to just killing them through no choice of their own.
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