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16 Jan 2019, 17:51

Goodspeed wrote:
Kaiserklein wrote:I don't think people mind games being played out in fortress, as long as it doesn't mean it's a skirm war so often. Colonial games are just as boring when it's musk wars lol, look at brit mirror. It's just nice when there's different kinds of unit compositions and more intense micro. Also not having goons makes multitasking/raids more viable
I agree that goons are an issue. We did nerf them in an earlier EP version, and they may need further nerfs. And like you pointed out, a colonial-based meta faces the same problem. In ASFP, where games were usually decided in colonial, most games ended up musk/huss wars which is just as bad as goon/skirm if not worse.

But the sooner we accept that a fortress-based meta is where the game is headed, the sooner we can start balancing it. Rather than complain about too many games reaching fortress age, people should focus on making the fortress-based meta better. Already we are seeing way more crate shipments in fortress than we did 5 years ago, people are looking towards industrial much more often, and people are building more TCs. Back in 2008, if you even reached fortress you would almost always send exclusively unit shipments.

As fortress-based styles are explored more, the issues will become more apparent. And when that happens, EP team can make changes to improve it. The goon nerf was an important first step in this, though perhaps a bit conservative. Thing is we had to be conservative at the time because we had a mandate to stay as close to RE as possible.

Just curious, in your view, when and why did that mandate to keep EP close to RE disappear? I think a lot of the issues people have with the EP team is because this mandate was slowly phased out with no explanation, and I think the no explanation part played a significant role in people’s anger.
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16 Jan 2019, 17:53

Kaiserklein wrote:
[Armag] diarouga wrote:
Kaiserklein wrote:I don't think people mind games being played out in fortress, as long as it doesn't mean it's a skirm war so often. Colonial games are just as boring when it's musk wars lol, look at brit mirror. It's just nice when there's different kinds of unit compositions and more intense micro. Also not having goons makes multitasking/raids more viable

Then just play a civ that doesn't have skirms lol.

Right, let's just not play half the civs because the meta is about going bot semi...

If you don't enjoy playing skirm wars then yes, just don't play half of the civs. Also you can be creative and avoid that with most civs, it's not really a must.
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16 Jan 2019, 17:55

Goodspeed wrote: Thing is we had to be conservative at the time because we had a mandate to stay as close to RE as possible.

And it should not change.
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16 Jan 2019, 17:55

ovi12 wrote:
Goodspeed wrote:
Kaiserklein wrote:I don't think people mind games being played out in fortress, as long as it doesn't mean it's a skirm war so often. Colonial games are just as boring when it's musk wars lol, look at brit mirror. It's just nice when there's different kinds of unit compositions and more intense micro. Also not having goons makes multitasking/raids more viable
I agree that goons are an issue. We did nerf them in an earlier EP version, and they may need further nerfs. And like you pointed out, a colonial-based meta faces the same problem. In ASFP, where games were usually decided in colonial, most games ended up musk/huss wars which is just as bad as goon/skirm if not worse.

But the sooner we accept that a fortress-based meta is where the game is headed, the sooner we can start balancing it. Rather than complain about too many games reaching fortress age, people should focus on making the fortress-based meta better. Already we are seeing way more crate shipments in fortress than we did 5 years ago, people are looking towards industrial much more often, and people are building more TCs. Back in 2008, if you even reached fortress you would almost always send exclusively unit shipments.

As fortress-based styles are explored more, the issues will become more apparent. And when that happens, EP team can make changes to improve it. The goon nerf was an important first step in this, though perhaps a bit conservative. Thing is we had to be conservative at the time because we had a mandate to stay as close to RE as possible.

Just curious, in your view, when and why did that mandate to keep EP close to RE disappear? I think a lot of the issues people have with the EP team is because this mandate was slowly phased out with no explanation, and I think the no explanation part played a significant role in people’s anger.

Yea, there was no reason to get rid of that mandate.
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Italy Garja
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16 Jan 2019, 18:10

I dont think a meta where you just age up and keep sending stuff like crates or units is particularly interesting. In a skill range where shipment spam is the lowest point and no shipment at all is the maximum expression of skill, such meta would simply noobify the game. You can make a point for strategic decision but really that makes the game more of a card game than an actual RTS. Cards should define your BO but from a certain point it should be exclusively about mechanics and not indutrial unit cards winning you games. Pushing for a game where clicking on unit shipments is half of the game itself doesn't feel right at all.
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16 Jan 2019, 18:13

Mechanics are still very important no matter what happens. You could, for example, not throw your heavy cannons and subsequently your entire army away in early industrial (kynesie on klondike), or not float 5000 resources in fortress age (snowww in more than one game). There is no scenario where this game would become about clicking on the right cards at the right time. Mechanics are always going to be game-deciding. It just shouldn't be the only game-deciding skill.
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16 Jan 2019, 18:30

[Armag] diarouga wrote:Yea, there was no reason to get rid of that mandate.

Yeah, even if you assume that substantially redesigning the game (I do not know if this is indeed the goal here because as ovi said there does not seem to be an explanation of EPs new goals) to make it better was a very good idea everyone is going to have different ideas about what would be good and it seems like it could be a bit of a mess.

It's also not entirely clear if the same principle with respect to the running of the patch (i.e. one dictator) is still the best idea if the role of the patch has indeed fundamentally changed. As I understand it everyone, or perhaps the top players, agreed that one person (Goodspeed) in charge was best for the patch when it was mostly about tweaking balance, but if there will be big general design changes that might be different.

Also if Zoi is in charge because Goodspeed picked him (I am unclear on this but on this occasion I think my lack of knowledge is on me), if Diarouga fatally wounds Zoi in a vicious assault over some Aztec change in the next patch and Zoi's last act is to log into ESOC (good priorities) and announce that The Ear will replace him, is The Ear now in charge?

Nonetheless the lovely people who organise things in this community can do what they like, and perhaps the next patch will be accompanied by a clear explanation of new EP goals and I will be fully convinced by it, I'm just noting my current uneasiness over the idea of fundamental changes.
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16 Jan 2019, 18:31

ovi12 wrote:
Goodspeed wrote:
Kaiserklein wrote:I don't think people mind games being played out in fortress, as long as it doesn't mean it's a skirm war so often. Colonial games are just as boring when it's musk wars lol, look at brit mirror. It's just nice when there's different kinds of unit compositions and more intense micro. Also not having goons makes multitasking/raids more viable
I agree that goons are an issue. We did nerf them in an earlier EP version, and they may need further nerfs. And like you pointed out, a colonial-based meta faces the same problem. In ASFP, where games were usually decided in colonial, most games ended up musk/huss wars which is just as bad as goon/skirm if not worse.

But the sooner we accept that a fortress-based meta is where the game is headed, the sooner we can start balancing it. Rather than complain about too many games reaching fortress age, people should focus on making the fortress-based meta better. Already we are seeing way more crate shipments in fortress than we did 5 years ago, people are looking towards industrial much more often, and people are building more TCs. Back in 2008, if you even reached fortress you would almost always send exclusively unit shipments.

As fortress-based styles are explored more, the issues will become more apparent. And when that happens, EP team can make changes to improve it. The goon nerf was an important first step in this, though perhaps a bit conservative. Thing is we had to be conservative at the time because we had a mandate to stay as close to RE as possible.

Just curious, in your view, when and why did that mandate to keep EP close to RE disappear? I think a lot of the issues people have with the EP team is because this mandate was slowly phased out with no explanation, and I think the no explanation part played a significant role in people’s anger.
Yeah it's understandable. To me the DE announcement changed a lot, but also the frequent complaints about a stale meta. Balancing the RE patch was always going to lead to a stale meta, in fact one could argue that any game that isn't changed frequently is going to become stale, and it seemed to me like most of the community didn't realize this when we decided to stay close to RE when we started.
Goodspeed wrote:When we started it made sense to stay as close to RE as possible. This was, in fact, a requirement in order to get a lot of key people on board with the idea of a new patch in the first place. The reasons were:
- We wanted to make it easier for people to switch from RE to EP and back
- It was easier to keep track of balance that way, since we already had a good understanding of RE patch balance
- We didn't have the time/manpower to discuss and test so many changes
- Many changes can make it hard to filter the significant changes from the patch notes

I tried to stick with this philosophy but I think it's time to breathe some fresh air into the game in every possible way. The above arguments still stand, but on the other hand there have been complaints about a stale meta, and that will happen if all you're doing is balancing. Take SC2 as an example: They frequently make big game-changing patches not just to improve balance but also to make room for new strategic ideas to pop up in the meta.

Another reason to explore more changes is the possibility that the DE people ask for our advice. I would if I were them. In that case we shouldn't give them advice on how to fix RE patch, but advice on how to fix the whole game. We don't have to hold onto RE patch as the base, since it will eventually be obsolete. We can explore design changes that are sorely needed in AoE3, for example we can actually try to fix water and make many irrelevant units relevant again. The time we have before DE is a time to test changes and come to as good of an understanding as we can of how to make the best possible AoE3. RE patch certainly isn't that, and by extension neither is the current EP.
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16 Jan 2019, 18:47

I like better having a game that is very good and far from re than the oposite. Idc if some suposed old pro would not make the effort to learn ep, I think people that play thé game a lot matter much more than people that don't give a shit+only want to play very few games+we are not sure they exist
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16 Jan 2019, 18:56

bwinner1 wrote:a game that is very good and far from re.

sounds contradictory.
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16 Jan 2019, 19:15

ListlessSalmon wrote:
[Armag] diarouga wrote:Yea, there was no reason to get rid of that mandate.

Yeah, even if you assume that substantially redesigning the game (I do not know if this is indeed the goal here because as ovi said there does not seem to be an explanation of EPs new goals) to make it better was a very good idea everyone is going to have different ideas about what would be good and it seems like it could be a bit of a mess.

Yea, exactly. You can't redesign the game to make it "good" objectively, because there is no such thing. It will be better for some players, and worse for some others. That's why you want to keep the game to the RE (ie close to Age Of Empires III lol), instead of trying to redesign everything.

It's also not entirely clear if the same principle with respect to the running of the patch (i.e. one dictator) is still the best idea if the role of the patch has indeed fundamentally changed.

That's also a fair point. Having only one guy making the changes was relevant, because he was some kind of supreme court who had to make sure that there weren't too many changes. Now, it should definitely be more than one person, because else he will redesign the game according to his vision of the game, which is why.
Actually, it works that way because if you put more than one person, the EP team will never agree, and you won't be able to redesign the game. It's the communist way : build a dictatorship because else people aren't going to let you change everything.


As I understand it everyone, or perhaps the top players, agreed that one person (Goodspeed) in charge was best for the patch when it was mostly about tweaking balance, but if there will be big general design changes that might be different.

Also if Zoi is in charge because Goodspeed picked him (I am unclear on this but on this occasion I think my lack of knowledge is on me), if Diarouga fatally wounds Zoi in a vicious assault over some Aztec change in the next patch and Zoi's last act is to log into ESOC (good priorities) and announce that The Ear will replace him, is The Ear now in charge?

Yep, this is absurd too. After all, the patch is going to affect the players mostly, and the tournament viewers to some extent, so you can't randomly pick an EP leader.

Nonetheless the lovely people who organise things in this community can do what they like, and perhaps the next patch will be accompanied by a clear explanation of new EP goals and I will be fully convinced by it, I'm just noting my current uneasiness over the idea of fundamental changes.
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16 Jan 2019, 19:21

Goodspeed wrote:
ovi12 wrote:
Show hidden quotes

Just curious, in your view, when and why did that mandate to keep EP close to RE disappear? I think a lot of the issues people have with the EP team is because this mandate was slowly phased out with no explanation, and I think the no explanation part played a significant role in people’s anger.
Yeah it's understandable. To me the DE announcement changed a lot, but also the frequent complaints about a stale meta. Balancing the RE patch was always going to lead to a stale meta, in fact one could argue that any game that isn't changed frequently is going to become stale, and it seemed to me like most of the community didn't realize this when we decided to stay close to RE when we started.

The meta isn't even stale lol. I mean, just look at that mono civ cup, players come with surprising anti meta build orders every game. If the meta looks stale it's because top players go for the same strats every game, and don't try to be creative, which has nothing to do with the balance.
Anyway, in a new patch, top players would do the same. After 6 months they would go for the same build orders again and again, plus the game wouldn't be balanced so they'd only play 5 civs instead of 10.


Goodspeed wrote:When we started it made sense to stay as close to RE as possible. This was, in fact, a requirement in order to get a lot of key people on board with the idea of a new patch in the first place. The reasons were:
- We wanted to make it easier for people to switch from RE to EP and back
- It was easier to keep track of balance that way, since we already had a good understanding of RE patch balance
- We didn't have the time/manpower to discuss and test so many changes
- Many changes can make it hard to filter the significant changes from the patch notes

I tried to stick with this philosophy but I think it's time to breathe some fresh air into the game in every possible way. The above arguments still stand, but on the other hand there have been complaints about a stale meta, and that will happen if all you're doing is balancing. Take SC2 as an example: They frequently make big game-changing patches not just to improve balance but also to make room for new strategic ideas to pop up in the meta.

The difference is that in sc2, changes are made by professionals, who are legitimate (because they're the owners of the game). Here, it's just a "fan" patch, and Zoi has no legitimacy to fuck with the game.

Another reason to explore more changes is the possibility that the DE people ask for our advice.

In which case you wouldn't want to ruin the game because it would ruin it for everybody.

I would if I were them. In that case we shouldn't give them advice on how to fix RE patch, but advice on how to fix the whole game.

Fixing the whole game is just subjective. We all have different ideas about the game, why do you think that Zoi's are better than those of other people?

We don't have to hold onto RE patch as the base, since it will eventually be obsolete. We can explore design changes that are sorely needed in AoE3, for example we can actually try to fix water and make many irrelevant units relevant again. The time we have before DE is a time to test changes and come to as good of an understanding as we can of how to make the best possible AoE3. RE patch certainly isn't that, and by extension neither is the current EP.
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16 Jan 2019, 19:23

bwinner1 wrote:I like better having a game that is very good and far from re than the oposite.


Do you prefer sc2 over aoe3 then? Or aoe2? Because both games are very good and far from the RE.

Idc if some suposed old pro would not make the effort to learn ep, I think people that play thé game a lot matter much more than people that don't give a shit+only want to play very few games+we are not sure they exist

Well, Zoi and Goodspeed are arguable some supposed old pros who don't play anymore.
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16 Jan 2019, 19:27

[Armag] diarouga wrote:
bwinner1 wrote:I like better having a game that is very good and far from re than the oposite.


Do you prefer sc2 over aoe3 then? Or aoe2? Because both games are very good and far from the RE.

Idc if some suposed old pro would not make the effort to learn ep, I think people that play thé game a lot matter much more than people that don't give a shit+only want to play very few games+we are not sure they exist

Well, Zoi and Goodspeed are arguable some supposed old pros who don't play anymore.

I find sc2 shit. (It's a matter of taste I guess). Aoe2 is a good game but I prefere aoe3 ep.
1st I am surprised you call zoi a pro, 2nd so what ? The reason why they don't play anymore is not that ep is far from re...
I didn't say old pro don't exist
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16 Jan 2019, 19:29

bwinner1 wrote:
[Armag] diarouga wrote:
bwinner1 wrote:I like better having a game that is very good and far from re than the oposite.


Do you prefer sc2 over aoe3 then? Or aoe2? Because both games are very good and far from the RE.

Idc if some suposed old pro would not make the effort to learn ep, I think people that play thé game a lot matter much more than people that don't give a shit+only want to play very few games+we are not sure they exist

Well, Zoi and Goodspeed are arguable some supposed old pros who don't play anymore.

I find sc2 shit. (It's a matter of taste I guess). Aoe2 is a good game but I prefere aoe3 ep.

Well, you think that sc2 is a bad game, but 95% of the people who like RTS think that it is a far better game than aoe3. If we fixed aoe3 to make it look more like sc2, you surely wouldn't like it, right?
Conclusion : "fixing the game" is a matter of taste, and what is fixing the game for some, is ruining the game for others, so it's better to keep the game as it is because we all like aoe3.
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16 Jan 2019, 19:40

Well we make the game better for us by making changes that the majority of us want, it's as simple as that^^ cut the bs pls
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16 Jan 2019, 19:43

bwinner1 wrote:Well we make the game better for us by making changes that the majority of us want, it's as simple as that^^ cut the bs pls

Well, first, how do you know that the majority wants these changes?
As far as I know, the changes are made by Zoi, and the majority isn't even aware of what's going one, so that's definitely not what the majority wants.

Furthermore, the majority can be wrong (and it actually happens quite often).
Thus the question, is it worth to make the game slightly better for 70% of the community for 6 months, if it ruins the fun for the other 30% ?
If 55% of the community wanted the game to become like sc2, it means that you should go for it by your reasoning.
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16 Jan 2019, 21:10

implying aoe 3 could possibly be like sc2 lulz
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Italy Garja
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16 Jan 2019, 22:00

kek
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16 Jan 2019, 22:08

Step 1: Complain about stale meta.
Step 2: Listen to suggestions to provide more options to players and in general make the game more interesting and exciting.
Step 3: Complain that the meta isn't stale enough.
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16 Jan 2019, 22:24

Mitoe wrote:Step 1: Complain about stale meta.
Step 2: Listen to suggestions to provide more options to players and in general make the game more interesting and exciting.
Step 3: Complain that the meta isn't stale enough.


Personally I'm in favor of veering away from RE into uncharted territory; but I felt like due to how much "we're making minimal changes" was emphasized in the beginning, it required an explanation or at least a notice that the EP will no longer adopt that policy.
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16 Jan 2019, 22:54

I think why so many changes is to make it a better game/ better balanced overall with more things that you can do before the new aoe3 comes out or w.e. I think that is why the so many changes they are doing.
So that the devs can just use the balance from ep and stuff. So the ep balance team is doing a total overhaul of the games balance to try and improve the game as a whole at least.
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Turkey HUMMAN
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16 Jan 2019, 23:53

I think dia has solid arguments even though i support change. Few things i can counter argue:
- undesired change does not mean = breaking aoe3. In fact some aoe3 features are not liked by many(water, otto lame, turtling) but they have a tolerance. So if %70 wants change and others can tolerate no problem.
-Changes are not marginal as you claim aoe3--->sc2(though i see the point in exagerating). As long as designers stick to aoe3 design-which is not very subjective- in this case zoi can implement a meta.
-- At same aspect, idk but were people against official patches in before? I mean anygame gets updates and its okay. You only focus on negative sides, surely you can find positives in a new patch. (maybe its also personal since zoi and you had a discontent)
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17 Jan 2019, 00:27

bwinner1 wrote:Well we make the game better for us by making changes that the majority of us want, it's as simple as that^^ cut the bs pls

Just to take an example, in the fixed crates topic here (a couple of years ago now), in the poll there, a majority said they thought fixed crates were a good idea (I have no idea about how representative the poll actually is of general esoc feeling on this issue, but lets just pretend its perfectly representative for the purposes of this). I think fixed crates are a very good idea and the game would be better if that was added, but loads of the people responding in that thread who were arguing against it were very very opposed to the idea, so given that it was only 60-40 it would seem to me to be better to stay with the status quo than intensely annoy perhaps 40% of people, despite me thinking that it is a good change.

Would you disagree with this and want to see the change (again assuming 60-40 split is representative of current feeling) despite a large minority really disliking it?
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17 Jan 2019, 00:29

Does the large minority really dislike it that much? Or is the opinion skewed because the minority’s voices are overpowering?
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