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Future Of Forge - Current Design Goals/what Is Missing! Something For The Dev's


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#1
Vihs

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This is going to be quite a lengthy post and I would appreciate detailed feedback so the Developers can see how the community feels.I wanted to stress the significance on a major aspect of the game that I feel is missing. I don't know exactly what ranks highest on the list for DVG to work on but I believe some things need to have a higher if not the highest priority right now.

Content vs Goals: (e.g. leaderboards/matchmaking/team balance/ranking/titles/flairs/cosmetics)

As much as I like new content such as a new class/map I don't believe this is what is of the most importance right now. I am currently very very worried about the relaunch that is planned. The reason why is because nothing has really changed. Yeah a new class is coming out, new map, armor set, that is cool but people will play for a week at most and then quit because the only thing implemented is playing for pure enjoyment. It seems like DVG wants Forge to be more of a casual pvp game, sort of like TF2, but the games very nature is that of a hardcore pvp game. No systems are in place to support this aspect of the game.

I believe the biggest flaw of Forge is not having a Ranking que/system. There really is nothing to earn, no real competition, no way to see improvement or something to get you involved in the community like teams/guilds. Most of the people that decided to buy this game and played the game are big PvP'ers from games like WoW, Guild Wars, League of Legends, Dota. Analyzing why so many people play these games is important. I believe the community is so small on Forge and people quit the game to go back to these games because they offer a competitive level that Forge does not have.
Each of these games has a Ranking System and give players different goals to strive towards and try to attain by increasing in rank.

Lets look at wow.
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People go absolutely crazy over little things like titles. Currently you just earn a title for leveling up..... No one cares about it because it does not mean anything you did not earn anything because all you did was play. The title is not important and there is no importance of getting a title.

In wow arena/battleground you make a team and play and try to win to earn these types of things. The top .5 percent of teams earn the Gladiator title. The top 3 percent earn the duelist title etc etc. When you get to a certain rating the color of your armor changes so that you can look different for being a good player. This creates competition and people will seek to earn these things and form teams/guilds.

Lets take a look at League of Legends

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This is all that LoL offers and people go absolutely nuts over this. The biggest game right now just displays different tiers to try and achieve. This allows people to know that they are actually improving at the game and can try to better themselves by listening/watching/asking questions from the higher tiered players. It's not that much it just shows other players where you stand compared to them and its nice and shiny. People love shiny things! People strive for bragging rights and personal improvement.

Ranking/Matchmaking/Cosmetics/Titles all need to be on the top of the list for implementing and working on. The game does not have a staying factor because of a lack of this. The leaderboards that are in place now are all bugged and does not represent anything. Leaderboards of that nature should be monthly and are more about oh I did that much cool. Having monthly leaderboards will not demoralize new players seeing never reachable stats. A new player can look where they are for the month and then see how they stand next month to ascertain whether they are improving or not.

People want to be the best at something it is human nature we are competitive. In Forge there is nothing to strive to achieve so people quit because it is just playing you do not get rewarded for being good. People that just want to play a game casually play single player games with a story and that is fun and the reward of that is a story line and exploration usually.

I try to tell my friends about this game and they ask me questions about what arena is like, Is it competitive, do you have cool armor. I can't really tell them about the game because it just sounds unsatisfying.

Me: yeah there are arenas but its just for fun
Friend: Oh what is your highest rank are you good?
Me: Im good but no ranking systems... but I'm good
Me: I won a weekend tournament
Friend: what did you get?
Me: oh it was for fun
Me: I have like 99 titles though
Friend: Awesome man how you get those?
Me: I played a lot
Me: They did quite a few contests that were pretty cool!
Friend: Nice you win?
Me: Yeah I got a 300 dollar headset and a t shirt!!!!!
Friend: Awesome how is the headset? What did the T-shirt look like?
Me: Oh I have not recieved them yet but it's been 3 months should be soon.
Friend: Come play ( Other Game ) man

I can't really relay how awesome this game is or could be there is so much potential that this style of game bring and I have invested so many hours into it and played so much because well these things will be implemented soon. I just want to stress how important it should be over everything else. There was a sale and about 600 people playing but next week everyone quit. Yes classes/maps made the game seem dull a bit and that content does need to come out but if you release that content without the staying factor people will just quit. I am so worried about this big relaunch that is planned because I think it will just turn out to be: new class cool, new map cool, people play it then quit seeing not much else has changed.

If you implemented a ranking system with rewards people would have something challenging them, something to work towards. As an example if I was in a game and lets say I was playing a Pathfinder and I had the same exact modeled bow that everyone has but mine was black or glowing. People would be asking how did you get that? That looks awesome! To where I could respond I won arena season 1 or something of that nature. * Bam * people figure out you can look awesome by winning different seasons in ranked. People stick around form teams/guilds they research the game tell friends about it and sign up for season 2 so that they can win something and look awesome. You just intrigued them and they are going to stick with the game. Solo player progression is an important thing to mention as well. LoL has this solo player experience to get them started in a competitive scene through the solo/duo que in ranked. This is important because it gets them started in the right direction and when they feel that they have improved they can form a team for other titles/rewards/ whatever it may be that is implemented.

There are a lot of tweaks that need to be made such as in game server browser and some polishing but right now I feel that everything I mentioned above should be the main issue to address.This post is quite lengthy and I probably missed some points I really wanted to touch base on, but I wanted to get this out there because this is a major concern and I don't want the game to die. I want to bring this to the Developers attention so that they can assess this issue and bump it up on the To Do List.

I am not saying that what the Dev's have done so far has not been great additions to the game or were not important. Everything that is under development is important. I am just trying to stress and bump the priority of this particular aspect of the game that is missing.

I hope this gets a lot of feedback from the community. Please like and give a detailed response if you feel the same way. Also don't stray off subject by posting suggestions/ideas for other topics of the game. I feel that this is the most important thing that needs to be incorporated in the game and would like posters to improve upon my post if need be.
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#2
Vihs

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Reserved. In case i need to add to the original post I didnt want to run out of room. (=

Thanks for all the feedback! I am seeing a lot of important numbers/factors that I forgot to incorporate into it but everyone seems to be covering them. So Thank you all for helping out and responding to this. It is important for DVG to see how the community feels and get really good feedback on aspects of the game like this.

Edit: stole something from Pahzik's post that I felt was really important and wanted to incorporate into the main post. It was on the issue of solo play.

I'd also like to mention that though ranked arenas are a good start, there also needs to be support for solo players through a ranked solo queue of some sort. Being able to get started in the competitive scene by yourself is extremely important, as it's another way to draw people into the competitive scene. - Pahzik
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#3
Qwahzi

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Excellent post, and I agree 100%.

As much as I like new content, content is not the real issue with Forge. Take a look at this Forge feedback thread from the Steam forums. It currently has over 150 replies, and the vast majority of the responses (other than those dealing with the game's lack of polish early on) have to do with 1) team balance, 2) goals/progression, and 3) game population. All three of these things are directly related to the lack of competitive features in Forge, and I'll expand on that later in this post. I've been trying to push this issue since release, but I sort of feel like prior feedback on this issue has fallen on deaf ears.

Yes, new content is good (and I'm really looking forward to the April patch), but new content only satisfies players for so long. None of us who are still here from the alpha or beta are here because of the maps, the classes, or the leveling system. While that may have kept us around for a little while, we're still here because of the community, the competition, and the potential that Forge has. Games like Counter Strike have been around (and popular) for many years, even though their core content has remained the same for a long time - the core gameplay, the maps, and the guns have not really changed, and yet people are still playing these kinds of games competitively (heck, CSS had 34,000 people playing at the same time today). Part of this does have to do with player-generated content (e.g. mods and custom maps), but a lot of it also has do with the fact that the game fosters and encourages competitive gameplay. The main "goal" of CS is to get better. That's pretty much all there is to it.

Global Agenda is another example of a game where a community formed because of its support for competitive play (albeit through a third-party website). The AgendaStats fansite brought an immense amount of replayability to GA's public pvp, and when it disappeared, so did much of the pvp community. GA isn't the best example (since it's pretty much dead now), but I still wanted to mention it because AS was so good. Though poor design decisions were made by GA's developers, AgendaStats was an absolutely fantastic addition to the game, and it kept GA's pvp alive far longer than it should have been.

Forge is a game with an identity crisis. The original design goal was for Forge to be a semi-casual game that you could pick up and play for fun (similar to TF2), but it's very nature contradicts this design goal. What casual player has time to spend 1.5 hours+ per level (per class)? What casual player will stick around after getting stomped by veterans? What casual player will take the time to research the classes in-depth to determine their counters and weaknesses? None.

And herein lies the problem.

If the game is not designed for casual players, who is left? The hardcore players. And what do the hardcore players do with a game that doesn't support competitive play? They get bored and move on. What motivates hardcore players is self-improvement - and not in the "ooo, I got a +10 damage item" kind of way. Hardcore players like to compete with others and to see themselves improve. When there is no way to track their performance, they have no real reason to stay. Why would you dedicate time to a game that doesn't reward your efforts to improve?

Competition is essentially free player-generated content. With the proper competitive features (matchmaking, balanced matches, skill ratings, leaderboards, etc), players will continue to play the same game for years, even with mostly the same content. The players themselves become the biggest reason for people to stay. Encouraging new players to compete (via matchmaking, balanced matches, and time-based rankings) ensures that the game's competitive community is always growing.

This post got really long, so I won't expand more, but the actual issues that need to be fixed (imo ofc) are: matchmaking, team balance, competitive features (real leaderboards - both monthly and overall), and competitive rewards (achievements, titles, skins, etc). These things will add far more replayability than a new map or new class ever will.

EDIT:
I'd also like to mention that though ranked arenas are a good start, there also needs to be support for solo players through a ranked solo queue of some sort. Being able to get started in the competitive scene by yourself is extremely important, as it's another way to draw people into the competitive scene.
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#4
Nevermore

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I agree and I think there is to much focus being put on things that aren't essential right now. Maybe also add a few title variants for 99. Since all of them are the same there isn't really anything special for hitting 99 on more than one class. No real motivation to do so unless you decide to play them for a day. Even then you can just get one 99 and reset it whenever you are going to play a different class. It could give people incentive to play and level new classes, which in turn leads to playing more.
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Offensiveness may vary.

#5
Patience

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Yup.
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yay

#6
thatguywhosnameisY

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I concur.
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( Y )


#7
Fury

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This thread's point has been requested/demanded by the community many times in the past. Clearly this is the monthly post on the subject, but it is a timely one. If some sort of matchmaking and ranked system/game type is not in ready for the scheduled re-release, do not re-release Forge.

I'm sure it's in the pipeline. Make it the priority if you want this re-release to keep players interested.
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Bad games, funny commentary on: Don't Press Start!

#8
rethink

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The gladiator grind was fun.
So fun I spent up to 14 hours a day playing at the end of the season to get it, along with several thousand other people.

People quit because they are forced to play better players than them constantly (Read the steam forums). Ranked arena would remove that. You don't see bronze players in league ever going up against diamond players unless they make a custom game. Whilst personally after playing the game for 8 months (August, first day of Alpha) it's lacking.
Pub stomp is only fun up to a certain point.
Scrimming against NA teams is only fun up to a certain point.
In fact just having to play on NA servers to get matches.

My thoughts:

Ranked with region restrictions. Eu plays Eu, 250 ping is just too difficult to deal with.

I played guild wars 2 even when queues were 4 hours long in paid tournaments and it would be the same 8 teams clashing against each other over and over because that was fun, eventually everyone quit because there was no real ranked and as far as I know only one team has gone back to look at it since.

I never did anything in wow other than arena and RBG's, because going up against top tier players was fun.

We stayed up untill 6am 4 days in a row to play in NASL and got knocked out just before the quarter finals, playing on NA servers at 6am.


My point is competitive = fun.


Forge needs ranked, not something that oh it would be good, it would essentially be the lifeblood. Even on games such as Archeblade they are working on ranked (to be released when the game is stable enough), they have a team of 5 people, and are free to play.
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Can I be a mongoose dog?

#9
Anebriate

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I'm thinking back to the early Counterstrike and CS:S days, and I can't think of any kind of metagame reward system for being better than other people other than an actual scoreboard.

I don't think people necessarily need prizes/titles as incentive to keep playing, but times are changing, and gamers don't have the patience they used to. A good game is no longer enough when there are hundreds of good games to choose from. Nobody respects the process of improving and practicing in a world of instant gratification.

I think we are trying to market a game from a bygone era to a new generation of cellphone gamers who get digital hats as a prize for taking a shit.
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#10
DJhoward

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Gotta agree with this 100%, there is nothing to play for. This is one of the reasons I quit, but the main reason being that the game is lacking depth and that might be because the devs aren't good enough at their game and I think they should seek help from the communitys top players with creating more innovative spells but that's another story. Good points vihs, forge would definately benefit from this.
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Kings win noobs lose

#11
Qwahzi

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Finally finished my post ahaha. Looks like some of my comments from our Steam conversation last night made it into your post :mrgreen:. I'm really glad to see this issue finally being discussed in detail.
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#12
ANTiCREATED

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I agree, there needs to be a great Ranked system in place. The ranked system will draw more people into playing. Think of halo, you play casually until you realize... HEY I'm pretty good at this, Im going to jump into a ranked match. You then realize you have a lot of practice to do before you contend with these super pros, this drawing the player in more, or making them retreat back to casual where they're more evenly matched. I myself play for the competition purely. There needs to be a Ranked system in place for recognition from peers as well as just knowing where you stand in the game. The armor will help a little as far as looking really cool and making people say "OHH OHH OHH I WANT THAT EPIC LOOTZ!" however i believe the real issue lies in the lack of Ranked play.
There needs to be a larger playerbase before some of these things can be implemented in my opinion. I would like to see the team balance, where you can only have 1 or 2 of specific classes in a match at once. I dont like seeing a 3-6 sin team.
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I am Jack's smirking revenge.

#13
rethink

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I'm thinking back to the early Counterstrike and CS:S days, and I can't think of any kind of metagame reward system for being better than other people other than an actual scoreboard.

I don't think people necessarily need prizes/titles as incentive to keep playing, but times are changing, and gamers don't have the patience they used to. A good game is no longer enough when there are hundreds of good games to choose from. Nobody respects the process of improving and practicing in a world of instant gratification.

I think we are trying to market a game from a bygone era to a new generation of cellphone gamers who get digital hats as a prize for taking a shit.


You have to remember thats fine as long as external tournaments are essentially doing it for you, ESL, Clan Base, Enemy Down, NASL, CGS etc.
While cs:s or 1.6 never had an ingame ladder they had active tournaments, ladders and rankings.
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Can I be a mongoose dog?

#14
Anebriate

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I think we said similar things, Pahzik, but you said them in a more generous way.
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#15
DJhoward

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I'm thinking back to the early Counterstrike and CS:S days, and I can't think of any kind of metagame reward system for being better than other people other than an actual scoreboard.

I don't think people necessarily need prizes/titles as incentive to keep playing, but times are changing, and gamers don't have the patience they used to. A good game is no longer enough when there are hundreds of good games to choose from. Nobody respects the process of improving and practicing in a world of instant gratification.

I think we are trying to market a game from a bygone era to a new generation of cellphone gamers who get digital hats as a prize for taking a shit.


I don't think you can compare Forge to CS to be honest. Forge doesn't have a very high skill cap unlike CS where the skill cap is infinite pretty much. You can't pull of an ace in forge, you can barely win 1v2 unless you're up against new players. There just isn't any real difference in skill on the top players in Forge, maybe it has evolved now, I don't know, haven't played in months. The reward of being pro in CS was being able to own the whole enemy team 1v5, or make nice frags and such, which doesn't happen in Forge.
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Kings win noobs lose

#16
Bazeleel

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Very well written post! I think Forge would great benefit from what has been suggested!

Also want to add, outlaw esports is still around, just been super busy with Dota 2 and SCII. We are still looking for a team to talk with and sign but till there is some kind of team ranking system we will be holding off. Keep this game great DVG!
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#17
ogre

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I agree that something like the leagues in league of legends/starcraft need to be added. I'm one of the 600 sale players and I absolutely loved the game, except for the fact that I didn't have any real goals with playing, sure I could hit 99 on a class or all of them, but that's not really a goal to me, more like something that should happen as I play the game. Of course jumping into a tdm and stomping is fun, but after 60 hours or so I found myself only trying to get into games with people like Anders, or people from OP, or bD so I could actually learn something/feel some sort of accomplishment for actually getting a nice score playing with some of the more knowledgeable players that won't let me stack 4 poison arrows on them and let me smack them with blind/freeze without even attempting to block or walljump away. I think I would have stayed a lot longer if I had something to work towards, and I'll probably come back and play a lot once I do.
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#18
MarkyX

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I agree with a good portion of this post. People like to flaunt their achievements and show the world about it. The only reason games of old (like CS and Quake) pulled it off because nothing else was better at the time. If Counterstrike:GO was a completely new game, I highly doubt it would've received half the sales it did.

To me, it boils down to the game's infrastructure. League of Legends is the perfect example of this, where everything is consistent, every change/decision has been researched, and caters towards both veterans and new players.

Forge doesn't seem to do any sort of attempt at doing this. You have this extremely long-winded levelling system that asks the players to spend eons to level up their character, maps that are terribly designed (and no hard changes after all these months), game modes that offer a very inconsistent and unenjoyable experience (TDM with spawn camping), lack of information given to the player therefore causing frusteration, and so forth.

You have competition, some of them offering their games for free, and they are trying their hardest to avoid the traits that Forge has
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#19
Charlondo

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While games like CS:S and 1.6 had nothing besides a scoreboard in game, it still had competitive backing through through many sponsors and websites. This game needs some sort of competitive backbone to it, preferrably built into the game. This game was refereed to me by a bunch of friends, and I brought a few friends of my own as well, and now they barely play after only a couple of weeks because there is no matchmaking system of any kind, no way of competing.

This game would probably be best off with two different ranking systems in my opinion, one being a simple MMR ranked system for large team deathmatch, CTF, and King of the Hill games. The other I have in mind would be more like the SC2 system for arenas, with some sort of title or ranking for each stepping stone.

New classes and skins are nice and all, but in order to keep people playing, they need something to work to achieve, besides trying to level each class.
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#20
Vihs

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I agree that something like the leagues in league of legends/starcraft need to be added. I'm one of the 600 sale players and I absolutely loved the game, except for the fact that I didn't have any real goals with playing, sure I could hit 99 on a class or all of them, but that's not really a goal to me, more like something that should happen as I play the game. Of course jumping into a tdm and stomping is fun, but after 60 hours or so I found myself only trying to get into games with people like Anders, or people from OP, or bD so I could actually learn something/feel some sort of accomplishment for actually getting a nice score playing with some of the more knowledgeable players that won't let me stack 4 poison arrows on them and let me smack them with blind/freeze without even attempting to block or walljump away. I think I would have stayed a lot longer if I had something to work towards, and I'll probably come back and play a lot once I do.



^ this is an amazing post.
I am so glad that we got a post from someone that was a sale player and got a detailed response on how they feel compared to the rest of us to add variety between the long time Veterans and Sale/Newer/100 hours players.
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