Improved and/or rebalanced MP maps

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Improved and/or rebalanced MP maps

Postby Mechanist » Sat Jul 14, 2018 5:43 pm

Since there are still many promising MP maps that could use some significant improvements (both in terms of balance and/or overall quality), I figured I might as well get started on tweaking those.

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Here's the first one: Amen v2.

Last time we played the original Amen, YanGez turned it into a slaughterhouse after spawning with the Dreadnaught. It was a total steamroll... :roll:
Unfortunately I have been AFK for the majority of it, and only came back towards the end - whereupon I witnessed him kill 5 or 6 other players in the span of at most 2 minutes, stopped only by the server kill limit being reached.
Some serious rebalancing was clearly in order here...

What has been changed:
  • Added background music,
  • Added one regular spawn point, to reduce frequency of spawning with the Dreadnaught,
  • Decreased the Dreadnaught's durability considerably - it now breaks in 5 hits, as opposed to the original 15,
  • Decreased the SoulTaker's durability to 20 (from 30),
  • Flames in the middle are no longer just for show - now they actually hurt when touched; also they have a new particle effect as well,
  • Increased the healing effect of standing on the central pillar slightly - it now heals 1.5HP/s,
  • Tweaked the visuals of the central 5 particle fountains, so that their particle streams no longer intersect the cave ceiling.
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And the second one: Katana War v2.

This one had a few problems... a very OP combination of Power Katana (itself also very OP) + Dragon Armor, as well as a malfunctioning Fire Katana which exploded in the user's face, and an obnoxious perma-stunlocking Knockdown Katana, to name some of the worst offenders.

What has been changed:
  • Added background music,
  • Added three regular spawn points, to reduce frequency of spawning with the Power Katana,
  • Decreased the Death Katana's damage output from 40AP to 35AP, also reduced its health drain from 40% to 35% of damage dealt, and lowered the durability from 15 to 12 points,
  • Decreased the Knockdown Katana's chance of causing knockdown from 80% to 40%, also changed its damage output from 15AP to 20 (non-AP),
  • Decreased the Power Katana's damage output from 80AP to 45AP,
  • Fixed the Fire Katana, now it's no longer a suicide weapon unless used at very close range; its alternate attack launches a fireball, slightly more powerful than that of a dragon's (previously it did the same thing, but the fireball it launched would immediately explode, blowing up the user!),
  • Halved the probability of the Invincibility Rune spawning randomly,
  • Increased the respawn timer on the Dragon Armor from 90s to 120s,
  • Relocated the spawn point with the Power Katana
  • now it's quite some distance away from the Dragon Armor,
  • Replaced the starting weapon for the topmost player spawn point (formerly the Power Katana) with an easter egg... (it also gives the player a real weapon, the Protection Katana).
EDIT: Replaced the file with a newer version. Details below.

Further changes to the Fire Katana:
  • Decreased the main attack's burn damage from 5HP/s to 4HP/s, also shortened the effect duration from 4s to 3s,
  • Decreased the number of secondary attack charges from 4 to 3,
  • Decreased the fireball's impact damage from 20 to 10 and the explosion AoE damage from 10 to 8,
  • Made the fireball's "burn effect" actually deal some damage to compensate (4HP/s for 4 seconds; previously it had been a purely visual effect).
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Hopefully with these changes, these maps should be more enjoyable to play now :D

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Attachments
Katana War.zip
(29.56 KiB) Downloaded 10 times
Amen.zip
(27.7 KiB) Downloaded 20 times

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Re: Improved and/or rebalanced MP maps

Postby yangez93 » Wed Jul 25, 2018 9:51 am

Very nice idea to edit these levels. Like any mods, maps, updates, patches have their new versions.

We played a lot recently and we saw multiple disadvantages of glitches, bugs and overpowered weapons domination that need to be ereased. And I would erase problems with endless falling terrain problems on other maps (need to rejoin server, and this has to do with the loss of stats and confusion in getting out of the server). And, of course, appropriate spawn points, I do not know how it is in other maps, but I would not spawn when there is a fire crystal in the hill of fire when someone use this near spawn point :)

With CP that contains these edited maps will be nice for new players that haven't to lurking in this forum to find improved version of these maps. Installer will unpack these maps - so everything they need to play without complications. I know that is has to unpack them in the right folder if it would have to be done manually.

Amen v2.
We have had the situations recently that we spawned all time with Dreadnaught, although we had a situation that everyone had this weapon so it looked like the game was balanced :D The problem is when one player dominates the maps with this weapon. Nice that you decreased Dreadnaught durability. Another feature: In my opinion increase of healing effect fountain can make it easier for camping player in the middle of the map and makes him dominated, but we haven't tried yet. And of course the more health potions there it's getting harder and harder in order to defeat other players. Soultaker is powerfull weapon, so nice to decreased its durability.

Katana War v2.
Very helpful change: Fixed the Fire Katana. I had always problem with this, everytime I use alternate attack it hits me not the other targets, so thanks for fix it. Decreased the Power Katana's damage output a lot, let's hope for more balanced matches, uninteresting is the game when where players flee from the player who has this weapon at the moment.
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Mechanist
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Re: Improved and/or rebalanced MP maps

Postby Mechanist » Wed Jul 25, 2018 2:56 pm

And I would erase problems with endless falling terrain problems on other maps (need to rejoin server, and this has to do with the loss of stats and confusion in getting out of the server).
Do you mean the "falling through floor" bug that sometimes happens when a player (re)spawns?
That's generally caused by the offending "Rynn Launch Pad" being too close to the ground, and is fixable by editing the level.

And, of course, appropriate spawn points, I do not know how it is in other maps, but I would not spawn when there is a fire crystal in the hill of fire when someone use this near spawn point :)
Level design issue compounded by engine limitations. Sadly, there's no general solution.
On most maps it's feasible to relocate the spawn points outside the blast radius.

Amen v2.
We have had the situations recently that we spawned all time with Dreadnaught, although we had a situation that everyone had this weapon so it looked like the game was balanced :D
I'd say that any time a non-instagib (by design) map effectively becomes an instagib map, then we can't really be talking about any level of balance remaining anymore...

Another feature: In my opinion increase of healing effect fountain can make it easier for camping player in the middle of the map and makes him dominated, but we haven't tried yet.
The healing fountain in Amen is very slow, even in v2.
And in v2 at least, it'll only work if the player is standing on the central pillar (doesn't really work when jumping on top of it!). That puts the potential camper at a serious disadvantage, since any attempts at dodging will cause them to fall off the pillar, and immediately terminate the healing.

And of course the more health potions there it's getting harder and harder in order to defeat other players. Soultaker is powerfull weapon, so nice to decreased its durability.
The real problem is that in a 1v1 scenario, the winning strat seems to be to run around the level like a headless chicken, gathering all the health potions. This both denies them to the other player (until they respawn), and gives a strong advantage.
Not sure what to do about that one yet.

Katana War v2.
But did you find the easter egg? :D

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Re: Improved and/or rebalanced MP maps

Postby Mechanist » Sat Aug 11, 2018 8:07 pm

Since the next release of the Community Patch is upcoming in the next few days (due to the recent release of AiO patch build 139), here are another two improved maps:

-------------------------------------

The Keep (Duel) v2:

This one primarily needed some background music, but I also took the opportunity to redecorate it a bit - as well as provided an optional way for more skilled players to show off, by fighting with a weaker weapon than normal.

What has been changed:
  • Added background music,
  • Added an optional "Hard mode" weapon: the wine bottle,
  • Made the fireplace fire actually deal damage on contact (this was clearly intended by the original author, but the damage effect had been set up improperly, preventing it from causing any damage),
  • Moved the spawn points outside of the duel arena, so that players who join the game won't suddenly find themselves squarely in the middle of an ongoing battle,
  • Redecorated the bookshelf.
Prerequisites/dependencies:
  1. The Music Common database must be installed (version 0.1 or later).
  2. The Weapons Common database must also be present (version 0.1 or later).
  3. The "SoundCacheSizeKB" parameter in Drakan.cfg needs to be set to 8191 or higher (otherwise Drakan will crash due to buffer overflow as soon as this map is loaded); NOTE: if editing Drakan.cfg manually, remember that there are 2 copies of it - for most users (those who haven't modified their Arokh.ini), that means: ...(Documents)\My Games\Drakan\Drakan.cfg
  4. The "Fountain of Life 3" map needs to be installed.
All of these prerequisites will automatically be fulfilled when this map is installed via the Community Patch.

NOTE: While I could include the Weapons Common DB here, there is no point, because the Music Common DB (which is also required) is much too large for a forum post attachment; even a single sound loop is a few megabytes in size.
Just use the Community Patch, which includes these 2 databases (starting from build 139.01); the map files are included here purely for completeness' sake anyway.

(EDIT: Oops, I deleted the attachment by accident.... so I reuploaded the exact same file as before.)

-------------------------------------

And then we have the first substantially improved Air map in many years: Fountain of Life 3.

Because the original Fountain of Life 2 (by Sserpenthraxus) is a great map already, there wasn't much scope for major improvements here. However, that's not to say that there wasn't any room for improvement, either :)

I opted not to add any background music, following the precedent set by most of the other Air maps; the ambient sounds in FoL 1 & 2 have been designed quite well - there's no point in spoiling the good soundwork with additional music.

The rebalancing it received is somewhat experimental, which is part of the reason why the powerup respawn timer changes have been kept to moderate amounts.
The "Sserpy Balls" lightning weapon is quite powerful, so naturally it's on the longest respawn timer; especially since it's located near the already-OP Magma weapon.
This location was the most suitable one however - in no small part because of the associated lightning effect on the dragon statue, as well as the damaging effects of that particular location of the player (there's a risk of instant death if player isn't at full health); it's also quite out of the way of the main playing area.

What has been changed:
  • Added the previously-unused "Sserpy Balls" lightning weapon to the random powerup generator by the dragon statue,
  • Adjusted the respawn timer for the "Sserpy Balls" to 180s and the alternate attack autofire rate to 4 per second,
  • Enabled the "Friendly fire" setting (obviously, it only affects team games),
  • Fixed the nonfunctional "Pray to the Sserpent!" message and sound effect,
  • Fixed the texture on the dragon statue's wings (added alpha map),
  • Increased the respawn timer on the Magma and Invulnerability powerups to 100s and 120s, respectively.
EDIT: replaced the file with a new version - the only change is a minor cosmetic fix to the texture on the dragon statue's wings.

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Attachments
The Keep.zip
(278.38 KiB) Downloaded 10 times
Fountain of Life 3.zip
(305.83 KiB) Downloaded 10 times

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Re: Improved and/or rebalanced MP maps

Postby Mechanist » Sun Sep 16, 2018 8:23 pm

Minor update this time:
2 of the above maps (Fountain of Life 3 and Katana War) have been updated with newer versions.

I've replaced the files in the relevant posts above, and updated their changelogs with the new changes to those maps.
These newer versions are also present in the new Community Patch (beginning with 153.01).

BTW, I accidentally also deleted (and replaced) The Keep.zip - but no changes have been actually made to it.


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