October 9th, 2005


Diminishing Returns: The Final Straw

A little background: I've been playing since CoH's Beta. I was a board member for over a year before that, and had at one point roped in most of my friends and my wife in anticipation of getting to play a superhero. My wife and I have kept constant subscriptions going for the entire year-and-a-half and had both preordered City of Villains. We'll be returning those when they arrive in order to get a refund. Diminishing returns on Enhancements is not the only reason why, but it was the straw that broke the camel's back.

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I love to see haste and stamina taken down a few pegs, but....

1) I love the idea of a player shaping a power into something unique for that character through the use of enahncements, but it just doesn't work. You can drop endurance drain enhancers into electrical blast all day and night and they add virtually nothing. You can't choose to slot hover for either speed or defense and get the same value for each. Just penalizing 5 or 6 slotting hurts every power and adds nothing to gameplay. Boost the goddamn secondaries!

2) I am absolutely sick of doing respecs on my characters. I have a wide array of favorites and am tired of re-learning to play them. This feels like work now.

3) No one is clamoring for sweeping changes to gameplay mechanics, but everyone would love new content. We were having a perfectly fine time playing the game so give us more to play. More zones, new missions, powersets, skills, story arcs, costume options...the paying playerbase get's excited about that stuff, not endless monkeying with their characters.
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(no subject)

Opinions are like assholes. Everyone has them, and the loudest ones stink the most.

Well, here's a quiet one, who's just sick of hearing everyone bitch about the game.

I *enjoy* City of Heroes, as do many other people. I think that with the addition of Issue 5, it's a better game than it was after Issue 4, which was better than it was after Issue 3, and so on.

I've got a level 50 regen scrapper who I'm afraid to play, because I don't know how hard it will be to get reaquainted with the powerset. One of my favorite characters is a level 15 tanker, who I am also afraid to play, because again I'm not sure how hard it's going to be to adjust to the changs to taunt.

Neither of these, however, are bad things, and neither of them are going to keep me from playing those characters indefinitely. Of course, it doesn't really matter, because I've got a whole slew of characters. I've got two servers whose slots are almost entirely full, and I've got characters scattered across other servers as well. I've probably got at least a dozen characters who not only do I enjoy playing, but who I really like as characters.

The game changes. Big deal. That's one of the draws of an MMORPG. If you were still playing the game that shipped on those two CD-ROMs, you wouldn't have...

Extra costumes
Extra costume options
Power respecs
Peregrine Island
The Shadow Shard & other extra-dimensional missions
The Hollows
Striga Isle
The Paladin
The Troll Rave
The Ghost Ship
That Hellion fire thingie
Updated mission graphics
Updated mission objectives
Outdoor instanced missions
The 4 Sonic and Archery powersets
Epic archetypes
Damage resistance inspirations
Holiday and other special events (Halloween, Winter Lord)
The defender and blaster inherent ablities

I'm sure I'm missing a lot, and that's not even getting to balance issues. I remember when I first started playing, tankers were considered utterly inferior due to poor aggro-holding capabilities. I'm sure there's other stuff I'm missing, too.

Sure, sometimes things are gonna get knocked down a peg, and sometimes YOU'RE gonna get knocked down a peg, but so what? Overall, this game is still better with each and every update.

Oh, and on another different note, I've decided to keep my account renewing now that City of Villains will be included in the same monthly fee, so my apologies to those who thought they were rid of me. ;)

Option for those who are displeased...

I'm going to make this as easy as I possibly can. So, for everyone who is soooooo displeased with all of the new changes to CoH, here is a really good answer to how you can solve all of those problems.

For the love of all that is holy, if you are so displeased with this game, cancel your account, go buy WoW, Dungeon Seige II, Solitaire, Candyland, or something... but just stop whining and crying about it. Okay?

If you're going to make constructive suggestions and have thoughts about it, cool. If you plan to bitch to the heavens every time someone moves your cheese, just shut up and log out, okay?
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hm queen elizabeth ii


This is not a post about the Enhancement changes. I have no problem with that.

This a post about random bridge requests. Last night I logged in my main Telemachus, a lvl 42 en/en blaster, into Peregrine Island and then ran off to the little blaster's room to pee. When I come back, my entire chat window is filled with random /tells for bridge requests.

It got to the point where I was responding with the follwing: "There are fine bridges in London and San Fransisco, I suggest checking there."
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How about a carrot instead?

Also posted to the official forum, but I'd like to hear what y'all have to say as well.

Encouraging Players to Use Varied Enhancements

A Carrot Approach

The proposed new Enhancement Diversification system seems very much like a big stick -- "Don't want to use different enhancements? Fine, we'll punish you by reducing their effectiveness if you do."

This seems to rub people the wrong way.

Here's a proposal that generates a desire to diversify, rather than mandating it.

When a player has a smaller number of enhancements of one type in the same power, they receive a bonus to the effectiveness of each enhancement.


1 Enh = 50% bonus (so a 33.3% SO = 49.95%. Total = 49.95%)
2 Enh = 30% bonus (so a 33.3% SO = 43.292%. Total = 86.58%)
3 Enh = 0% bonus (so a 33.3% SO = 33.3%. Total = 99.9%)
4 Enh = 0% bonus (so a 33.3% SO = 33.3%. Total = 139.86%)
5 Enh = 0% bonus (so a 33.3% SO = 33.3%. Total = 166.5%)
6 Enh = 0% bonus (so a 33.3% SO = 33.3%. Total = 199.8%)

This has the effect of encouraging players to use varied enhancements, because by doing so they receive a bonus to the effectiveness of each individual enhancement. There is no penalty applied to players who choose to slot many of the same type of enhancement -- their performance will remain exactly the same as it is now.

Here's how the new numbers compare to the current ones:

1 SO: Old Total = 33.3%, New = 49.95%
2 SO: Old Total = 66.6%, New = 86.58%
3 SO: Old Total = 99.9%, New = 99.9%
4 SO: Old Total = 133.2%, New = 133.2%
5 SO: Old Total = 166.5%, New = 166.5%
6 SO: Old Total = 199.8%, New = 199.8%

I've used SO enhancements for my numbers but the principal also translates well to the other types. In fact, it gives low-level characters, who have few slots so far, a boost in effectiveness.

I like the idea of rewarding people for diversifying without penalizing people for specializing.

Just MHO.


(no subject)

I'm not really going to say much more about the new Enhancement Policy or CoH and CoV until after it goes live. I will see how it plays THEN decide how to spend my very hard earned, rather scarce, real life money. I have been in CoH almost since release and might be a part of something else too but I can not tell anyone or I will have to kill you with a biscotti and hide the body in a freshly baked pie.

Personally I don't have much optimism if the proposed changes go live AS THEY ARE RIGHT NOW but I will WAIT AND SEE.
I do feel as if the "vision" has gotten away with a certain Dev and that he may have lost touch with his player base. No, he doesn't owe me anything. The game doesn't owe me anything. I also don't owe him any of my money or time spent playing it if this game is not enjoyable for me. I can always find something new, like I have done in the past and move on with my MMO life.

I also think that the article in the link may be VERY helpful and pertinent to the current CoH situation. I know that the opinion is written about a MUD. It is just someone's opinion, but it does state things clearly and much better than I ever could. It really applies to the MMO situation quite well.
You have probably seen this around before but I really think it bears repeating...
Officer Friendly

Experiments with Enhancement Diversification

Last night, I played in that which shall not be named, and learned a little bit about the way the system looks and feels. I, however, can't talk about that here, given the NDA, other than to say that there's some very nice interface enhancements that go with it.

What I can talk about, however, is my experiment in replicating the effects in CoH. Given what is known about the system (see earlier posts), I respecced Major Patriot, my level 28 (now 29) BS/Inv scrapper. I had not yet respecced him for I5, so the old spec may look a little odd.
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and it's Moredread for the win!

I made good on my promise to pre-order City of Villains if there was no additional charge to play both, so I figured I should start thinking about villains and maybe reserve a name.

And thus, Moredread, Ex-calibur's nemesis, was born. I haven't decided on his motives yet, but probably some sort of "Ex-calibur 'arrested' my father, who was a Circle of Thorns mage..." thing.

I built him as a Stone/Axe Tank, and since I've never played a tanker, I took him through Outbreak. Then I immediately won a costume contest in Atlas Park. :-)

(Click for the big, 1920x1200, version.)
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More on Enhancement Diversification

I don't think I'd mind Ed so much if he didn't affect stamina. I don't even care too much for how he affects hasten. It's stamina that I cry for!

From Cuppa:


Just wanted to clarify something I have seen floating around.

This system was NEVER intended to go directly to live servers. It will go to test first.

Consolidated thread coming monday. Dev response thread as soon as the NDA is lifted.

X-Posted to cityofvillains