Update 0.36 - Difficulty and balance

Good tidings, Adventurers! :wave:
As you may have seen, Update 0.36 has gone live today.

Good tidings, Adventurers! As you may have seen, Update 0.36 has gone live today. We’re pretty excited about the new Events and all the optimizations this update brings. Along with the features, we’ve spent some time adjusting the game design and balance.

What changed with Update 0.36?

We focused on the positive benefits which could bring; like giving items an extra attribute to make upgrading more useful, making some enemies a little easier & reducing the number of Relics required to upgrade items. For more information, see the patch notes here.

How are you addressing the difficulty issues?

Thanks to all your feedback and ongoing support we’ve been keeping an eye on the difficulty. There’s a lot at play in the game’s wider economy, so we can’t make changes to effectively make the game directly “easier” straightaway. We found an issue with Gear stats not scaling correctly at higher rarities and resolved that. This should help anyone who has Gear at higher rarities. In addition to this, to help everyone progress a bit further, we’ve decided to send some Resources…

You may receive a few gifts in the mail

To help with the transition to Update 0.36, some players will be sent resources sometime over the next 24 hours from Eveline. If you’re higher than Level 5, you’ll likely see this. This will help with improving some of your Gear so you can fight battles a little easier; giving you the specific resources required to do so. Due to the way the game works, please note that if you have the maximum amount of Gold for your Hero, you will only receive Gold up to your maximum Gold Cap (capacity).

What’s next?

Please continue enjoying the update! We’ve tested our changes, however, this might feel different for you all. We’ll keep an eye on the difficulty of the game and check in on how things are going throughout the week. We will be reading your feedback and examining the data on our side while we see how these changes affect the game.

:crossed_swords:

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Free stuff is always nice. I will take 1 full set of mythic armor please :sunglasses:

I’m am always a bird of optimism and seeing the cup half full… However, I’ve hyped players up that 0.36 is coming soon and there are exciting things coming etc and now I feel the balance changes to the spells have completely overshadowed the amazing effort you’ve put into all the other features.

I’m so disappointed, and believe me, I get my fair share of socks at Christmas so I’m well used to putting on a gracious face and saying thank you but the super nerf to spells has left me feeling like I’m not sure how I’m going to progress. Later on in the game, you get one shot from the enemy and you are dead. To counter this you need to build a great set of spells with relatively cheap mana. I totally support the reason in the past updates of class specific spells and no duplicate spells but from 50 to 125 or even 160 mana feels really really unfair, unbalanced and just makes me want to walk away because it doesn’t feel fun to work around.

Eg. The no duplicate spells update, ah that’s a shame, let’s see what other great spells there are… We could see solutions because there were still cheap spells that we could use to stand a chance in those crazy High and Hard hitting battles… But now, even if I just take 1 spell that is in each of my class builds… Sunburst 50 to 125 (can no longer be used effectively), insect plague 50 to 180 (can no longer be used effectively), Ray of frost is now 225!!! It hurts guys… You’ve took (for me) one of the most fun parts about this game and chucked it away.

Please please, reconsider these spell balance changes.

Sincerely… A sad little Hawx

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second that. I’m now fully stuck with some higher level characters.

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Rebalancing things is important and not everything is bad in the update. But difficulty is crazy high. I had a task to do a lvl 95 dungeon today for 1 Toragon Crystal.

Dungeon boss had 82k+ Life and resistance so chipping at it with spells doing 1k-1.4k damage or
even 4k with Holy avenger was a looong process.
I was still able to beat it only after my dwarven necklace paired with Savior’s helm kicked in and barriered me on turn 1 otherwise it’s one-shot death. (I’m fine with that, it was already the case in 0.35 with higher difficulty dungeons since I did not have the right rarity on gear to get me empowered on start.)
I was still able to loop on my spells being careful to create stuns with gems creation despite the spell cost increase but it was not really enjoyable due to the crazy amount of times I had to cast them.
Due to the enemies crazy stats, it took me 35 minutes to beat it and got a wooden chest with some gold and food (already maxed out and currently useless) and 11 dungeons marks (have those been reduced too?)

I mean, who wants to spend 30+ minutes on a single battle. This seems highly unreasonnable. I’m sure some different gear might make it easier and I will be testing it in the future but this looks overwhelming. I can’t imagine how completing the questline will be from now on when starting the game with only low gear.

Please don’t wait months again to address the situation. The playerbase can be understanding that you are tweaking things but there was so much promise of a better future in 0.36 that was stained by a few mistakes in the process that it makes people sad.

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Also. Thanks for the gifts. That’s a lot of stuff.
However, we don’t have enough gear space for that :cry:
The salvaging dilema continues :weary:

Also, epic gear only has 2 attributes it seems…

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Cheers for the gear. Pity I have no room for it :roll_eyes:

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@Cyrup thank you for the goodies. I was actually able to use a few of those armor pieces!

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:flushed::frowning::scream:

Wow, I have little positive to say.
Right now I am so disappointed and disencouraged that I am not even going to try out the new events.

Battles now take 3-5 times longer -The spell’s mana cost more than doubled for most spells :scream:

Since the Citadel’s start mana didn’t work I havn’t used any points in Offense: all starting mana. With this update’s change to mana cost you could have given us the opportunity to refresh the points. Actually that should be possible each time you change the game.

Gifts are nice, but I can’t help thinking that it is like a tiny bandage on a huge wound you created with this update. Which again isn’t appreciated as it could have been, if we had room in the storage. It is so frusteting to HAVE to salvage gear over and over. You are basicly forcing us to choose which events we want to participate in because we do not have enough storage capacity. I know you expect us to grind grind grind, but this is way beyond what you can expect.


Restricted tourney and elite tourney. How come a necromancer’s Diamond that show the mana color they benefit the most mana from is red in one and blue like normal in the other? And a paladin and shaman with blue mana Diamonds? My paladin has a red Diamond, my shaman a blue Diamond(those could be because my paladin is restricted to using red gear/minions and my Shaman is restricted to using blue gear/minions in elite tourney).
Is it a visual bug or a bug? Will a necromancer with a red Diamond benefit from red gems instead of blue?

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I think that has to do with the element of your weapon. your paladin looks like it’s using a pair of Fire Mastery Bone Sickles while your SHaman is using an Ice Mastery Weapon.

Sees free relics in mailbox

Yay!

Realizes that the amounts given were half the amount of relics needed to ascend a gear piece to Epic/Legendary

Boo :frowning:

Well, at least it’s something. Hopefully it won’t be too long to find the additional relics to start ascending things.

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Could be. My hero’s Diamond is the same as the restricted element in the elite tourney and restricted tourney, BUT that doesn’t explain why a necromancer has a red Diamond in one fight and another necromancer has a blue Diamond- both fights are from the same tourney.

Level 29 pal went from progressing on very hard to not being to kill 1 skeleton so cant pass the stage that is now “hard” all so my kid and I just paid for the starter pack with the blue item and after the patch it made it trash.

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I’m doing my best to process these changes with the understanding that there was an expected difficulty increase/rebalance forthcoming. But this feels like a bit of a half-implementation as well with a lot of gaps: Spell system is still linear and gives very low value relative to the increases in armor/health, while upgrading spells is still essentially pointless. While weapons were given a huge buff, many gear items are even more devalued except for the very items that made the ramp up to Difficulty X a core part of gameplay prior to the update (anything with a barrier or superior mana generation wins). None of the core strategies have changed, no big realignment of spells and effects occurred, no enemies were rebalanced with actual changes to abilities, no items were updated to improve or modify their effects (many of which are so purposeless as to be merely impediments to getting the few items of actual value). No dungeon bonuses were reconfigured to align with the new stats.

A Difficulty X match can now take 15+ minutes even for a reasonably well geared player which essentially makes the activity pointless on a regular basis unless its part of the daily challenge where the very items you need as upgrades to improve your ability to do the content are now locked behind the self-same content (not to mention the extra joy of not even getting the right amount of Marks or even staying connected makes me question the “testing” assertion).

Philosophically I don’t really understand the effect of this update unless its through the prism of “We needed to slow things down again and therefore put into place something that wasn’t fully finished but serves the purpose of putting a halt to certain activity”. The rewards for higher difficulties with this exponential increase in effort (to be clear, not an increase in challenge but just pure toiling effort), is entirely the same as pre-update which suggests that the goal of the increase in difficulty was not to encourage but to punish.

I can tell you that the response from my kingdom, a very engaged group of players who I think are pretty understanding of the early access process is one of just pure dread. It’s positively funereal. I am trying to be upbeat and I will continue to engage with the changes as there are some things that I like, but I find it difficult to express any sense of optimism because I can’t really grasp the intent.

Telling people that things are “different” and saying “continue enjoying the update” is a level of purposeful tone deafness that even the best PR manager struggles to achieve. But I get it; obfuscation in the face of tough changes is necessary. Here’s to hoping that it all ultimately makes sense.

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Dungeons take so long now that I literally don’t have time to play the game anymore. Farming dungeon marks is now impractical, it would take 6+ hours just to farm enough marks for a day’s worth of diamond chests.

While doing a lvl85 dungeon for a relic reward, I got disconnected on the boss and the game decided to send me back to the home screen instead of back into the dungeon. 20 minutes lost because the servers are still unreliable.

Every patch is one step forward, two steps back. Devs should be communicating their intended changes with us before delivering the patch so we can tell them ahead of time that they’re making the game even more unplayable and just pushing players away. We’ve already learned to expect at least a 6 week wait before any of these major issues are possibly addressed, because there has been no sense of urgency from the dev team at all. At this rate, how many players will survive to the end of early access? I think only the very few most dedicated will have a chance.

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Before I get to it… I want to first say that there are some nice things in this update. The QoL fixes are awesome. I like where things are going with the events and the challenges. Not perfect. But I get where you are going and, like the direction.

But I have to ask this: If the “balance changes” were tested… how did no one catch that all “flat” bonuses are now completely irrelevant? By this, I mean things like “gain 20 armor matching a big gem”, dungeon altars, that sort of thing? People played the update and thought, that gaining 120 armor/resistance for an altar seemed just right? The ore nerf makes zero sense, also.

Look. I have no doubt that testing was done. Of course it was. But going forward, I hope there is a little more thought about the big picture. Look at previous buffs (and why you made them) and previous nerfs (and why you made them.) It really seems that there was some serious tunnel vision happening in the testing process.

Anyway… while the balance changes just seem like a hot mess, I do see the light at the end of the tunnel, there. And again… there were some much appreciated improvements in the update.

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I’m sure you have run tests on the changes, but I question whether thoses tests were done by real ‘testers’ or just the programmers/developers. How many had GOD-mode or unlimited resources while testing? How many tests were done with newbie accounts, or medium level ones where no ‘purchases’ had been made?

I understand that the game needs to be financially viable, but it also needs to be playable. 0.35 and 0.36 have both made changes that have crippled the gameplay. Where 2 months ago I was happy to spend money and play for hours on end, now I criticise myself for even opening the game. I’ve gone from loving it’s potential to wondering if it will even survive to it’s potential.

Early access is supposed to help you develop the game, and to build a community of gamers who sing it’s praises far and wide. Without the latter, it doesn’t matter about the former. Unfortunately, because you are taking the ‘Microsoft’ route of sending it out with bugs/issues and wait for everyone to complain, all you’re managing is to build a lot of resentment with those that have spent money and invested 100’s of hours. Unlike Microsoft, we don’t need this game - I wish we didn’t need Windows!!

I do still think the potential here is huge, and I absolutely love some of the changes and additions that have been made recently. However, if you want to have a community of adoring gamers, you’re going to have to start listening to them more. As mentioned above, use this community to bounce ideas around. Don’t just make an internal decision to reduce the ore pool, for example. Ask us if that sounds like a good idea. Explain why you think it needs to be done, and then listen to the feedback. You don’t have to discuss everything, but if you share we’ll feel more involved. Even if we’re completely against the idea and you go ahead anyway, at least we’ll have had warning and better understand why it was done.

We’re here because we want this game. We love the idea and are willing to put up with the process in the hope that it becomes what we all believe it can become. You need us as much as we need you, and if you don’t believe that then the game is doomed.

Just my 2 cents :slight_smile:

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This is an excellent point. The better business model (imho) is to build a loyal fan base first and then worry about focusing on profits.

Furthermore, with regards to profits, try and not overvalue what you are selling. Full disclosure, I’ve barely looked at the cash shop for pq3 but if it is (or is going to be) modeled after the GoW cash shop I think that is a major mistake. Think micro transactions. Think about things that players would want at a price they will pay.

I would absolutely love to see cosmetics for the different heroes. Things like different outfits that you can change between. Maybe even piece by piece. Tons of customization options that people will see when they fight you in pvp for example. And for the love of FSM, dont charge $10 for a cosmetic helm…

Difficulty for rewards from Challenges is a bit off kilter.

image

An opponent that does over 10k auto-attack damage and has over 30k effective health + resistance/armor is quite a challenge for an Epic Ice Rune. The majority of players will never have a chance against opponents this difficult and will need gear far more advanced than Epic-tier gear to even survive a single (non-crit) attack, let alone chip away at the opponent’s massive health/armor/resistance pool.

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