Update 0.36 - Difficulty and balance

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…

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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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Global chat comments have shifted from:
“How do I raise food cap?”
to
“How do I get more than 2 spells?”
to
“How do I complete a dungeon before the game times out for inactivity?”

So far I personally haven’t had this issue as skulls just obliterate everything now, but I haven’t done a single non-daily related dungeon since 0.36 due to how much of a waste of time it is. Before could do around 12 max dungeons in an hour. Now it is closer to about 6 or so. Despite this only being around a 2x difference, it is around a 10x difference on ‘fun’. There is no additional challenge nor reward, they are just needlessly bulky to the point that anything other than gear with upscaling mechanics is pointless in dungeons. The lack of gear balance now is baffling. It was already horrible, but now it is nonexistent.

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When 0.37 hits the question will become “How do I uninstall this game?”

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I sure hope not. I am really enjoying this game.

Provided that you have at least a minimum of a Legendary Weapon. Lower rarities still do much more damage than they used to but the jump in damage from Epic to Legendary is really exponential. People often ask, what should I spend gems on. If things remained as is, the answer would be Weapon Glyphs.

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Personal take, I don’t believe they intend provide additional rewards for high-level dungeons until they have the balancing complete. My gut feeling on the situation based on the changes that were made in 0.36, is that completing the higher Difficulty dungeons requires power levels equivalent to having all full slate of kingdoms in GoW at Power 30/Level 20. In other words, a multiple-year grind to get there.

The fact that some players are still able to do clear Difficulty X iin 0.36 probably means that additional nerfs are probably incoming in the next update to emphasize locking the door on that for a long time.

There’s definitely a method to the madness, as far as I have been able to figure out. 100% sure of that at this point. Some of the methodology is rather obvious (base weapon damage rating), while other components, such as spell damage/effectiveness, are very obscure, have multiple moving components, and would probably never be found by the average player.

Much like the relic situation in 0.35, the gear system that is likely going to be final was put into place in 0.36 with the “tweaks” to it being added in 0.37.

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While I’m on the this topic, this would be a good time to bring up that Citadel perks really, really need a balancing pass in 0.37.

As it very much looks like the name of the game going forward is increasing player stats to power levels far over 9000 over a very long-term grind, the limited citadel perks (50 points max per) are far too weak in 0.36 to make a difference.

A couple of quick examples:

  • The 2% unlimited Vitality boost is far more beneficial than the +0.1% limited Extra Health boost.

  • The 2% unlimited Power boost is far more beneficial than the +0.1% limited Extra Damage boost.

And so on.

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