Yes, it’s time for another round of thoughts on the game. I figured they had cooked long enough.
On Project 1v1 being, well, one versus one:
I’ve noticed a lot of critique asking for non-1v1 modes, yet 1v1 competitive play is sort of the keystone of the whole concept. So that got me to thinking: What other modes could still fit the 1v1 framework, get more than two players involved in a match or series of matches, and actually be fun to play? Perhaps fighting games have already cracked the code…
King of Fraggers mode: Three players ready up together, then are matched against three other players. Each player chooses a position: first, second, or third. When the match starts, the player in the first position on team one fights the first-position player on team two. The player that achieves five frags wins the round. The winning player is moved to the nearest spawn point. This player’s condition is left in the state it was in when the final hit was landed – i.e. low HP, high HP, cooldowns, charges, Vampiric, et cetera. The player in the second position on the losing player’s team is spawned in, and play resumes after a countdown. When a second team member loses, the third arrives in the same manner. When the third loses, team victory is achieved.
Frag-team mode (or perhaps Marvel Vs. Gearbox): Three players ready up together, then are matched against three other players. Each player chooses a position: first, second, or third. Every time a player spawns, a 30 second countdown begins. When the countdown expires or when the player is fragged, the teammate in the subsequent team position spawns into the map. If the player is tagged out due to expiration of the 30 second countdown, when they are tagged back in, they will be in the state they were at the time they were tagged out (HP levels, buffs, et cetera). Play continues normally, until match timer expiration. Most frags wins.
And now for something completely different, a skill card I might like to see someday:
For 10 seconds, your weapon cards deal 50% of their base damage to you, and 50% additional damage to your opponent.
Cooldown: 40 seconds
On the current weapon and skill cards:
I desperately want the fire rate nudged back up to 0.9 seconds, with the Damage Radius reduced to 450. I have two opinion-based reasons for this.
Reason one is that I no longer find the Rocket Launcher to be an interesting mobility tool. Between the slower fire rate and the self-damage, trying anything besides the occasional single rocket jump for air superiority seems overly risky, and thus, pointless. Bouncing off walls is right out.
Reason two, I think rocket zoning is currently too easy. Players don’t have to aim precisely to zone medium-width corridors, because the blast radius is such that a mediocre shot will lightly touch a player, trigger a damage number, and reveal their position. Right now, I keep seeing it used to blindly initiate, as a sort of pseudo-wallhack map ping, to soften up an opponent for the Tesla. Reliable? Sure. Skillful, fun to watch? Nah.
In short, I want it to see it be a more precise, skillful explosive weapon, rather than fire-and-forget. That role should belong to the:
For starters, I still feel like the projectiles need to travel around 10% faster, as they just don’t move far enough, quick enough. The range restriction makes Detonader strategies feel very one-note. Most of my Detonader kills are done at melee range with quick detonations and self-damage. Anything else, such as zoning, feels haphazard rather than precise.
I would like to see the Detonader further become the weapon of choice for less-than-precise demolition, while the Rocket Launcher moves away from that concept. The ideal shot with the Rocket Launcher should be a direct hit, while the ideal Detonader barrage should box an opponent in and restrict their options.
If this is the proper notion, then along with a projectile speed increase, I think direct Detonader hits should only do 30 damage, splash should be a minimum of 15, and the Damage Radius should be increased to 500.
I wish the Railgun had a special property – either “Ignores damage reduction.” or “Ignores half of enemy damage reduction.” This way, if I made an amazingly lucky shot on a player using Human Flame, it wouldn’t be tragically pointless. It would also fit with the nature of the weapon.
I love the Railgun. I goes fwoomf. That sound design.
Too strong up close, too random at long-range. Could it perhaps have a charging element, that tightens the spread the longer the primary attack button is held? Reduce the per-pellet damage to compensate, and I think this could be a lot of fun.
Sorry to add to the broken record, but please dial back the tracking or the damage. It’s too strong for a player with the hardware and skills to produce precise fine aim at medium and long range.
As said elsewhere, it’s currently laden down with gimmicks. Good luck fixing this one. I believe in you, sweet devs.
I find using Bubble Shield as a counter to Bubble Shield to be pretty damned lame. Once two players realize they both have Bubble Shield, the smart move is to just hold the stocks. When the opponent activates, you can put a shot into their shield, activate yours, and win. If you have the Shotgun, it’s a free frag. When there’s two smart players, well, no one uses the shield, and fun is reduced.
Suggested changes, perhaps Bubble Shield shouldn’t bounce any Bubble reflect damage, but just absorb it, or perhaps another Bubble Shield can only reflect 50% of another shield’s bounce damage. The other 50% would trespass the shield, with the idea that both players would be left at similar low HP totals after a double-reflection.
I also think Bubble Shield reflect damage should be reduced depending on how many solid objects it has to pass through. While it should be 100% in most scenarios, if I use Recall to travel cross-map, and the beam is traveling through multiple walls, I feel like I should be taking 10-15% reflected damage at the most. In other words, a skilled Recall should provide some damage mitigation. This would encourage Bubble Shield users to pay attention to opponent’s Recall markers, which I think would be an interesting strategic element.
I’m not 100% on this, but it seems that if Bubble Shield reflect damage fires during the Phase Reverse rewind, the damage is ignored. I really don’t think other skills should hard counter Bubble Shield, but soften the blow at most.
Otherwise, I think this skill hits the sweet spot of utility, as well as providing options for clever deployment.
I very much want to see the Sentry used in quick-placement scenarios. Right now, it’s getting dropped in the same ol’ protected places, because dynamic use requires too much additional movement to set up viable placement. As a potential enhancement, I think it would be rather sexy if there was a method to place the sentry facing you. This could perhaps involve holding down the bound key for a second, like placing a Recall marker, or perhaps by pressing ALT-FIRE while holding the bound key.
If this was possible, I would definitely use Sentry more, especially as a mid-air drop to set up a quick pincer attack. However, I acknowledge this opens the door to players packing a Sentry tightly in a corner to restrict flanking scenarios, so perhaps the Sentry would then need to take up a boundary slightly larger than its model alone, to prevent it from being jammed up against walls.
Better since the changes, but still curiously strong in the hands of a skilled player (i.e. not me). As a tiny nerf, I think all health packs should give 25% of face value to a Vampiric player. That way, the Vampiric player can still control an opponent’s healing options, but it will be more difficult for them to get back to 150 without acquiring Bat Flight.
Or if you’re feeling extreme, I’d love to see Vampiric players get no healing from health packs, or even more amusingly, take a little bit of damage from grabbing one. Final Fantasy taught me that curatives hurt the undead and derivatives, and that includes vampires.
If it gets nerfed a bit more (especially in the “extreme” method), I think it should also get a simple buff – two charges, instead of one.
It requires more strategy than the average player can muster to properly defend an Excalibur platform. I think it would be interesting if, in the spirit of the skill, the player has to stand on the platform for a short time to remove the sword – around 5 seconds. The longer the sword is left in the platform, the stronger it and the player become upon removal. If pulled immediately, the sword simply does 50 damage per swing. At 10 seconds of mature time, the sword does 75 damage, and the player receives 50% damage reduction. At 20 seconds, the sword deals 100 damage, and the player is invulnerable.
The sword’s state could be amusingly handled by HUD message. “You pulled a RUSTY Excalibur from the stone!” “You pulled a SHARP Excalibur from the stone!” “You pulled a FLAWLESS Excalibur from the stone!” The sword on the platform would also glow brighter as it gained strength. It would also be nice if the timer was changed to a “% strength” indicator.
This is another skill I’d like to see have two charges after being retooled. It’s demoralizing to activate one of these premium skill cards, then flub your defense and live in shame. I think players deserve two cracks at these sorts of things per-match.
Of course, if wishes were horses, beggars would ride.
Having used it for a while now, I’m really not a fan of the RNG element. I love using the skill as a way to press the offensive, but if I pull Cooldown Reduction when using skills such as Air Jump and Recall, then it’s pointless, and my opponent knows it. I’d simply like to see it changed to provide a 25% movement speed buff and a 3/sec healing buff, with a lifetime of 10 seconds. With a predictable buff, I’d actually limit my aerial movement to save the activation for a surprise initiation, rather than just hope the RNG blesses me at an opportune time.
I want a 5% movement speed buff while active, and/or a 10% damage buff on decloak. If I land a beautiful rail shot out of a skillful Cinders cloak, it should matter more.
I think the slow effect should be swapped for 10 damage.
Mines often drag a match into a low-scoring slog, rather than providing a significant advantage for the Mine layer. When savvy players step on a mine, they immediately go into listening mode, to check for the blitz. Most post up and zone with rockets, while I prefer crazy Rail rides and a well-timed Recall. Because there are so many valid defensive options, I think it currently requires a lot of effort to put a Mined player into a position of weakness, unless said player steps on two in a row.
Furthermore, stepping on an enemy Mine can sometimes become an advantage, especially when the opponent is at low health. If they press the attack, you know their position is weak, and you’ll probably win a skirmish, even if it’s an ambush. If they run for health, then they quickly give away their position. Either way, you’ve cleared one of the mines for free.
Currently, Mines seem best used in conjunction with rocket zoning and map control, as well as to run down the match timer, and frankly, that’s the short list of the most boring things going on in P1V1 right now. If I’m facing a rocket-happy player and I step on a mine, sometimes I just sit still and watch all the desperate shots slam into every nearby corridor as I approach. No tension, no drama, no play-of-the-game, just a dull, safe strategy with the best odds. It’s… something.
However, if it was 10 damage (or even, gasp, 15 damage) and wallhack, I think that would create a more interesting pressure scenario. Without the slow, the mined player could attempt more clever, skillful responses to an ambush or zoning, yet they’d also be wall-hacked and at a life deficit, which would ratchet up the tension in a subsequent combat engagement.
To summarize, P1V1 is a speedy, action-packed game. When a slowing effect is combined with a match timer in such a space, I believe it runs the risk of undermining the game’s core tenets.
I think it would be interesting if the pieces showed up when the Codebreaking player dealt 60 damage (one full Rail or two glancing Rocket hits) instead of scoring a frag. That way, all three pieces could often be on the map, but you’d have to figure out the order. Pick up the wrong one, and all the pieces should disappear.
Then, to keep it from being too overpowered, have the effect go away on death. And as I’ve said before, it would be fun to be able to activate the wallhack effect on a 10-15 second cooldown, rather than on a timer.
This also relates to the Codebreaker SFX – the ping sound lands just this side of annoying when played at an interval, but I think it would be fine in any other scenario.
I’d like to be able to cancel the rocket barrage prematurely, and I still think it would be funny if a few of the missiles went unpredictably wild, to the side or behind. Itano Circus, you know?
It’s a silly cornball one-hit-free-frag sort of thing. I guess there’s gotta be at least one of those, right? I’m not a fan, but I know plenty of others are, so I won’t pick at it. Leave it as-is, but let the tide rise the other ships to match, I suppose.
Well, that’s all the cards. I’m out of stuff to talk about. Thanks for readin’.