Comprehensive Feedback on the current Build

14

I wanted to put in a fair bit of time before giving an in-depth breakdown of the state of the game, given that my first breakdown was fairly vague. Around 130 hours later, I think I can dissect my thoughts fairly (if not concisely).


  • Crafting: I've beaten this dead horse a fair bit in other posts, but I'm going to reiterate it here. I've probably had stuff crafting for about two thirds of my playtime, and I can count the results that were worth the one to six hour timer on one hand. We're talking about around sixty hours of production, and a scant handful of good results. Yes, this was with optimizer mats in place. The core concept is great. Most of the system is good. It's the timers. I said it before, and I'll say it again... it's been stated that this isn't an MMO, so please, please, please leave the free to play MMO/mobile gaming timegates at the door. If the timer was 20 minutes for a purple, with the ability to drop it to ten, and then five for greens with the ability to drop it to 1.5-2 minutes? Yeah, that'd be ok. But as it stands, in an hour I will find gear that is better than the result. I might find it in the shop after I've run a couple missions and idly sell instead of salvaging. I'll probably find it in the mission. The proposed "more mats to lower the crafting time" concept doesn't really fix this--especially not given how many mats one generally has on hand at any given time. In addition, there's the issue at play with appealing to casual players (who are, currently, the most likely to leave asinine reviews over something like this). A casual player has about an hour per play session. They want to see real progress, and taking two to four to get a single piece of gear? That's raised a fuss in proper MMOs, in an ARPG that will be... untenable. Especially with competition like Grim Dawn with no crafting queues, blueprints for BIS gear, etc etc... I've beaten this dead horse so hard I think I might have gone Khorne. On to my next point.
  • Experience: The PL system has some glaring flaws at the moment. It's great in that it encourages players to party up with newer players. This is good, it breaks some trends that other ARPGs have set that are... detrimental towards playing with others. However. I have literally no incentive to move to higher CR missions until I hit the next power level. The missions take longer due to the modifiers to damage dealt and taken, and only grant a pittance more experience. From an efficiency standpoint (I gag on that phrase but now understand it), there's no reason to spend 25-35 minutes on a mission that'll give 12.5k experience when one can get 7k XP from a 7 minute mission--in the same time you get one and a half times as much experience. My suggestion, then, is to increase the base reward, so that it's worth doing a CR3 zone at PL3 instead of bum-rushing CR1 missions at PL3 (as an example). It's not bad if one can get a group going, since leveling is (relatively) fast with Tarot missions; it's the solo balance that is problematic.
  • Weapons: While, largely, Neocore has done wonderful work this build in capturing the feel of a large variety of the weapons present in the 40k setting, there are some that aren't quite there. As I've broken down (at length) in the Shoot and Retreat thread, the Long-las and SP Sniper Rifle are... a little bit too much of an all-in-one fix. With the high burst-fire capability of the former, and the AoE damage output of the latter that frequently outshines its single target damage, they don't even require a second weapon equipped--I spent a good chunk of the last twenty hours using solely my SP sniper rifle, the same one I got as a mission award around level 4; and only changed once I finally had access to the Exitus--which is the only really "thoughtful" weapon in the sniper's pool. It focuses on single-target damage, and while it has two skills tied to it that are passable multi-target, they don't outshine the single-target. And with the implementation of the Exitus, I actually have a reason to swap to the second weapon I carry, and I have to think before I go barreling into a room, rather than treat a sniper rifle as a really long-barreled assault rifle. Given the stress on how this is a more tactical game, I'd be remiss in not further underscoring that point. Meanwhile, in melee... the chainsword's Traumatize skill does not actually stun the target per the tooltip, so one of the biggest reasons one would take a chainsword (stunning a Marauder, for example) isn't viable; making the Eviscerate ability somewhat... lacking.
  • Enemies: To start with, Elites are a little... underperforming at the moment. My tank crusader can simply stand in place, ram a chainsword in the knee joint of a Decimator or Hellbrute, and tank all the resulting damage until (several minutes later, so their HP pool isn't too bad) the thing falls over. This becomes more glaring when compared to the Marauder (which I'm becoming more convinced is having some issues this build in general). As a champion that spawns in clumps of up to twelve, it feels clumsy that the health regen is a significant amount larger (measurably) than the champion daemon subtype while also having a massively higher damage output to boot. To wit: with most of my encounters as my tanky crusader, 50% DR is perfectly fine to tank two to four champions (save rocket havocs and Marauders) and big clumps of infantry. Three Marauders pin me in place, however (easier than one would think, as they currently block phase dashes, shield dashes, and jump pack movement), and I have to pop the CD to bring me up to 70%, and my deflect will bump that to around 80%... and through this each one will deal takeaway damage in the 400-1500 range (not crits, raw damage). The only other unit in the game that can deal that much damage through my fully-buffed CD damage reduction is the Decimator, if I dally too long in the pieplate ability and tank that huge explosion. And the Marauders do that each hit. And spawn in large clumps. And have higher health regeneration than most of the (current) bosses. Then there's the odd behavior with the grenade chucking action from the two tarpit melee units. I've noticed that if you move out of range, the grenade will adjust mid-air and hit. This has caused some consternation on my assassin, as it's somewhat irritating to move behind an L junction to avoid eating a molotov cocktail and then... suddenly you're on fire. Kind of odd. On that point, the rocket Havocs fire turns a bit too quickly--like, 90 degrees in an instant quickly. The assassin has very little overall damage mitigation, and things that were mild irritants on the Crusader are brutal on the assassin. As such, I've taken to noticing that a dodge-roll will not save you from the rocket. It simply adjusts course in place and stuns you anyway.
  • Skills: Largely, very little negative feedback here. Largely. They tend to feel meaningful as you fill a tree, and it's nice to have some of the bonuses. That said, some of them are... meh? The Vindicare tree has a number of missing skills (I assume the tag means it's not in place, as their effects did not apply), and largely lags behind the Single Target DPS tree in terms of having a real effect on sniper damage output (especially with the "you heal a smidge on every 1-hit kill" skill). 1.5% is a bit low to adjust a damage output when it only applies to one of the four skills on a weapon--it's an inefficient skill selection when Ranged adjusts all four, and Single DPS adjusts two of the skills. Aside from that, very little to say other than "it's largely useful"--high praise for a network of broadly branching passive buffs; the expected monobuild does not happen in Martyr, and for a 40k franchise title that's... unique. That includes the tabletop, at this point, as GW has embraced the Monobuild Philosophy over the last few editions. So, high praise indeed.


All told, there's far less negative to the build than there is positive, and while I'm pretty... verbose when it comes to criticism, it comes from a place of wanting to see the game continue to improve as it clearly is, not a dislike for the game in general (which can be hard to tell when I get critical, apparently). Some of my criticism comes from experience as a lifelong gamer, some from time as a former designer.

Yeah, there are things that need fixing. What alpha doesn't have issues? Largely, this is shaping up to be one of the best I've been a part of (both of the paid founder type and the old breed of closed sign-ups). Neocore has been responsive and clearly takes our feedback into account.

LATE Edit: Until we have tutorials in place, I'd suggest adding a simple plaintext entry to the skill page that outlines that you can refund skillpoints. Just a lil QoL input.

EVEN LATER Edit: Noting an issue with chat, where if you hit enter as a UI window pops it will clear your message and interact with the UI prompt instead. This has been... problematic, as I keep ending up in parties while typing in chat.

This post was edited 1 year 68 days ago by BrotherLazarus
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Comprehensive Feedback on the current Build
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1 year 68 days ago
Airsick Hydra

Don't have long to write up one of my long-winded responses so I'll be quick about this one.


I'm pretty sure it would be very handy in group play. Pop a cold bore prismatic shot, giggle as the Crusader uses a single Cleave to nuke up to 30 things. In a single blow. Think of the 3/4's health thing as a really, really intense debuff if it helps.


No argument on the Exitus though. It's definitely my preferred choice of smiting instruments at this point. That and a bolter, since I can't have an Exitus pistol with it.

This comment was edited 1 year 68 days ago by BrotherLazarus
1 year 68 days ago
Airsick Hydra

"Perhaps there is something it's has which the other rifles doesn't which I haven't spotted tho :D"


Oh that's easy Hydra....I love how it turns the Heretics into "crispy critters"....Never discount the "cool" factor !!

1 year 68 days ago
BrotherLazarus

That's where I can't get behind the concept of Prismatic being of any value. if it does 3/4 of a packs health, then renders the gun useless for lets say 6 seconds. Another guns AoE shot, ie any of the other snipers - would probably do very similar damage to a pack, likely be spammable and not render the gun useless, forcing an awkward weapon swap and damage downtime.

The Exitus I feel is just "the best" of the rifles. It has very very clear advantages to using it - Crazy amounts of single target damage, almost every attack has armor pen or bypass and it's aoe capacity is more than competent. The only disadvantage is having an AoE every 3 seconds.

The Laz rifle though? - It's disadvantage is even more notable when it comes to AoE. Clearing a room with multiple packs - What little it does have just isn't viable - which makes me ask what it's strength is? - Because it's single target damage isn't impressive, nor is the total quantity of penetrating attacks which rests on par with the needler.

Anywho - don't want to turn this into a weapon balance thread :D i'll be making one next week in a sniper comparison video. Perhaps we should return to this then?

Good work. 

1 year 68 days ago
+1
Airsick Hydra

Differences in experience are good, the more feedback we give the more Neocore gets comprehensive breakdowns to tweak and tune with. I'll be doing some of my own videos too, it's about time I dust off my microphone.


Prismatic Shot seems to be a very gear/prefix dependant ability; with the right setup while it might not kill a 3 meter clump, it'll still easily do 3/4's of the health of literally everything in the area of effect (which is surprisingly substantial on a cold bore shot), it takes very little effort to get a big enough group clumped to become "efficient". It's not my go-to rifle at all (either a good Mars pattern SP or a Mars Pattern Exitus), but it ranks above the needler for me, putting it firmly in third place (I think it was a Kolschei I had that did the most, but I could be wrong, I'll check later).


As it stands, the Exitus does exactly what it's supposed to. Outside of the animations not syncing correctly with the shooting, but that's more of an amusing bug than any real problem. LMB is beefy, and serves well to clear small groups of trash one at a time, Inferno rounds (RMB) does a fair bit of damage but doesn't feel like the star of the show so much as an emergency "whoops" button. Pervasive Shot (2) requires some thinking to pull off well, but when you do get it right it's really nice--if it would punch through cover, given the much lower damage (about half of my LMB attack), it would give me a fairly balanced option to deal with stuff behind cover that doesn't require brute-force destroying the cover I might like to use after. It does less damage, so it doesn't one-hit kill even trash, and it would be preferable (IMO) to moving out of cover and into disadvantageous positions to pop off a shot. More fitting to the thoughtful style the Exitus lends itself to. And of course Sniper Shot delivers, though sometimes it doesn't do as much damage on a full charge to Elites as the Mars pattern SP, which is odd but I assume an issue with poor damage rolls in the moment (half to three quarters of a health bar per hit vs. one quarter to half, which is an oddly low amount for an Exitus, but I'll accept it).

1 year 68 days ago
BrotherLazarus

Strange how our experiences differ! :D - I've found the Needler only requires 3x hits of the basic attack to give it 9% crit chance /strength, which works into an easy rotation given the 3 second aimed shot cool down, without stacks though I don't think the base damage is notably different to the other rifles. But the anti heal more than compensates for this.   

I'll accept that the rapid fire has some fairly competent damage - And that having a rapid fire is a nice "identity" for the gun, which allows for another build variant - But it isn't the strength of the weapon as it still falls short in both single target and aoe when compared to the exit/sniper. Auto gun has the same skill - yes - But it also has flesh bane.


Prismic shot. The skill renders the weapon useless for 6+ seconds - while doing similar damage to an average aoe ability. Even if you somehow rely on grouping up rooms to a point that this shot is going to get multiple kills, you are taking 5x as long to achieve the same thing. It's far from unusable and more than passable - Just pointing out there is no inherent reason to use it over the other rifles in my eyes unless you just happen to like the sounds it makes. Which is fairly cool. 



1 year 68 days ago
+1
Posted by Airsick Hydra 1 year 69 days ago

Going to have to ask here regarding the Las-Rifle comment. From what i've seen, it's easily the weakest of the four snipers and the most painful to complete anything aside from easy level content with. Primarily due to it having -

  • Far less AOE clear than the other snipes.
  • Less penetration to that of the sniper/exitus.
  • Absolutely no utility effects compared with the other rifles.

It has a "slightly" higher base damage on unarmored targets, but given the above two glaring disadvantages what is wrong with that?

You discount the use of choke points coupled with a cold-bore Prismatic Shot. Seriously, with the right prefix the long-las Prismatic Shot can actually not just be useful, but be nearly godly against everything but Elites. The rapid fire is also comparable to the autogun or some lesser breeds of boltgun as well (again, prefix dependant), making a properly named and Signum-bedecked long-las a rather considerable force multiplier.


While it won't outright kill everything, you can easily do so much damage to large crowds that a quick swap to your off weapon will dispatch everything in it, hence the need to use some forethought into funneling them through a tight choke point--and that even includes Marauders, making it the only weapon I've found that will just ignore some of their sky high health and deal what appears more to be flat damage when firing an AoE attack. At the time, I packed a pair of Death Cult Blades, so I'd pop Prismatic Shot, swap weapons, and a single right click killed everything at once--though I suppose any passives that reduce the amount of time it takes an overheated weapon to work again would allow you to spam the full auto skill as well, or follow up with a second Prismatic Shot.


Personally I find the most painful to be the needle sniper rifle, because you have to stack debuffs before the aimed shot does damage comparable to the others (which means that the "single target 1 hit kill restores 10% of your health" passive skill is effectively worthless with it).


Regardless, as soon as I got the Mars pattern SP (which ends up being Baby's First Exitus), I swapped to that and it carried me through from 13 to 20 with... I think two mid-mission weapon swaps. Then I lucked out, got a solid Mars pattern Exitus, and use that. With a boltgun for emergencies.

1 year 68 days ago
Posted by ctiger 1 year 68 days ago

I like the Las Sniper Rifle...works well for me.

it works fine - just that every other rifle does what it does with a lot more umph.


The Exitus does more single target, more aoe and more cc.

Sniper Rifle does the same single target, more aoe and more cc to enemies

The needler does less damage but more aoe, more cc and applies a 100% healing debuff.

Perhaps there is something it's has which the other rifles doesn't which I haven't spotted tho :D

1 year 68 days ago

I like the Las Sniper Rifle...works well for me.

1 year 69 days ago

As for the weapons I love the idea's the Neo. have. Yes there will be 'better' gear including weapon's but i think 'Fun' needs to be an option and Las fills this spot. Once i am capped and well geared I can see it being a great 'straight after work' rifle.


@BrotherLazarus Sorry about the miss-quote and the feedback is great.

1 year 69 days ago

As for crafting it's ok however unless you can make gear to increase your damage you might as well not have it. The time part does not worry me but there needs to be an upgrade weapon part on top of create one. 

1 year 69 days ago

Going to have to ask here regarding the Las-Rifle comment. From what i've seen, it's easily the weakest of the four snipers and the most painful to complete anything aside from easy level content with. Primarily due to it having -

  • Far less AOE clear than the other snipes.
  • Less penetration to that of the sniper/exitus.
  • Absolutely no utility effects compared with the other rifles.

It has a "slightly" higher base damage on unarmored targets, but given the above two glaring disadvantages what is wrong with that?

This comment was edited 1 year 69 days ago by Airsick Hydra
1 year 69 days ago
+1
Thank you for the nice feedback again! Added to our feedback notes. 
1 year 69 days ago
Christs

I said "Largely, very little negative feedback here". The statement was that the skill system is actually pretty solid, and I don't have a lot in the way of negative criticism to apply. ;)


When I come into writing comprehensive feedback, I get pretty verbose. I actually normally end up writing feedback that's two or three times as much text (in a couple cases, I've written novella-length reviews) as I had here, but I've already beaten several of the points into the ground, so I felt I didn't need to spend as much time on them.


After you mention it, with such a broad diversity of skills I wouldn't argue against getting two skillpoints per level.


Edit: syntax fix

This comment was edited 1 year 69 days ago by BrotherLazarus
1 year 69 days ago

Largely agree with what i read(wall of text). I disagree with the skill tree being 'largely negative'. I like them, there will always be some that won't be taken but that is only a matter of adjusting there figures. I do feel that the earning of points needs to be doubled however or decreased and can put 1 point in each unlocked one. I also think that as a whole the elite's are set well. Sorry have to go out. More to come.