Based on most of the feedback I've seen and from my own personal observations, I feel that there are three main problems with the current system:
- New players are locked out of higher difficulties
- New players mechanical skill progression does not match the rate at which they unlock higher difficulties
- New players are automatically underpowered compared to teammates who are not new
Now, I can't say with certainty why the current system is designed this way, but these are my thoughts on the reasoning:
- New players will not be able to join lobbies for which they are unprepared and could pose a detriment to the team
- New players will be able to learn the game mechanics on lower difficulties before being able to proceed to more difficult content
- New players will have a sense of progression by slowly ascending the difficulty levels and constantly upgrading their gear
In theory, this doesn't sound bad, and it doesn't necessarily contradict the feedback outlined above, but what are the real problems with these design philosophies?
- For every player we prevent from joining a lobby that is too difficult for them, we may be forcing a player to play in a difficulty that is too boring for them
- New players who play on lower difficulties will be learning bad habits that must be unlearned when they eventually unlock higher difficulties
- New players can be turned off by slow progression requiring them to level each of the 5 characters leaving them weaker than their teammates until they have fully maxed out their progression
Okay so how can we fix these problems while still maintaining the original design philosophy?
- New players can play any difficulty up to Champion without any requirements, they can complete all four Helmgart Lord missions on Champion to unlock both Legend and Cata (Ideally Cata is moved out of the WoM paywall but that's another discussion)
Instead of locking difficulty based on Hero Power for each individual difficulty, let's lock them out of difficulty with consideration for the main transition point which is Champion->Legend.
- Remove all references to Hero Power for players. Completely. Set all players to the maximum hero power based on the difficulty level they are playing
Instead of capping how effective a player can be based on their Hero Power, have the cap be related to their actual skill level as a player.
- New players will have all weapons and careers unlocked from the beginning
(Optional but should be considered until the Athanor system is merged into the core game) Instead of focusing the grind on things that actively hinder new players if they are underleveled, move the focus to improving those weapons' Qualities, Properties and Traits.
Source: Original link
© Post "Proposition to improve the Vermintide 2 New Player Experience" for game Warhammer: Vermintide.
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