Warhammer: Vermintide

The terrible state of gear and why the new talents give me some hope.

warhammer 6 - The terrible state of gear and why the new talents give me some hope.
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I originally commented with this in another post but it kinda grew to the point I wanted to make my own post. I'd like to say for the record that I still very much enjoy VT2 and play it often. I just feel like this game has such wasted potential. I've never been so physically and viscerally affected by combat in a game. I'll play through an intense part of the game and then realize afterward I was clenching my whole body for several minutes like I'm playing a VR game. It creates amazing epic moments of play where you feel like a god for pulling off an impossible task or fail miserably which make success that much sweeter. That being said, here are my thoughts about why the state of gear in VT2 is abysmal. I think in order to retain the remaining players and any new ones from Winds, Fat Shark really needs to reexamine their gear. They need to know why good gear implementation is important to players and why it keeps players coming back or in VT2's case, drives them away.

Gear in Vermintide 2 is so incredibly bland and boring. Attributes are almost pointless. Traits are boring. There is no real choice to be made as there is always a cookie-cutter best setup and nothing really affects gameplay. I use the same trinket, charm, and necklace on almost all of my 15 characters. Gear never feels like an upgrade or something you earned. The way we acquire gear is tedious and frustrating. Gear is a complete failure on Fat Shark's part.

When you only have 1 gear slot that is unique to your character, gear customization is impossible. We need more armor slots (chest, helm, legs, greaves, etc.) with diverse, interesting attributes and traits. 5% crit, attack speed, movement speed, ammo on crit, and 95% of everything else add nothing to the game. Off the top of my head, I could think of dozens of more interesting types of gear, attributes, and traits than we have. How about some fun procs like a chance for drakefire pistols to fire a larger, different projectile, or a chance for Sienna's staff to shoot a seeking projectile, or a chance for Krubers' weapon to shock nearby enemies on hit? What about boots that gave a small speed boost at the beginning of a boss fight? A helm that highlighted sneak rats and packmasters from far away automatically? What about a necklace trait where you automatically get a bomb or potion at every boss? How about more than the measly 5% bonuses? How about some poison resist? If there is a lore problem then I'm sure lore-friendly stuff can be thought up.

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It'd be great to have a character role that was all about taking out armored mobs for the group, stacking across multiple pieces of gear damage to armored, damage with headshots, damage with bombs, and some traits that were also complimentary. Or, you could specialize in boss killing. There would be a trade-off though, a choice to make based on your role and what you like specializing in.

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There are no legendary-feeling items in the game. When you get a red item, it's basically the same exact thing as a white. It will attack the same way, do almost the same damage, and usually look almost the same. Nothing feels game-changing or really like much of an upgrade at all. It's basic game design. Every level up, new skill, talent, upgrade, should feel immediately like an upgrade. It's what keeps you coming back.

This next one is huge for me…I don't remember getting any of the gear I currently use. It's not tied to a memory of some amazing boss kill, or something I worked towards or I earned by overcoming a really difficult challenge. I just clicked some boring random loot box at some random point that gave random gear with randomly stats for the 1,000th time and got lucky. Think about your favorite games with loot. You can probably remember the name of your weapon, your armor, how you got it, how it felt equipping it for the first time, how you felt like a super saiyan for just a little but, and how you wanted to keep chasing that feeling…so you kept playing.

The way we acquire gear needs to change. Everyone hates these terrible loot boxes. Why don't we have gear drop in the actual game like the loot dice do? You could have drops from a boss or in a chest or other ways. Just figure out a way to get across what the item is without needing to sit there and read it for more than a second or two. Tons of games have successfully done this. Why isn't there at least a chest at the end of the level to open up and get your gear there, in the game. That would be a much more rewarding conclusion to the stage that you could share with your team. Gear just feels completely separate from the rest of the game. Glued on for no real purpose.

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As for cosmetics, they haven't even tried. Everything is just another skin color. What about some cosmetics like auras, footprints, changing eye/hair color, some idle animations, etc. How about you get tracer light arrows if you had some cool unique amulet? What about if you get 10,000 kills with some legendary sword, it will permanently drip blood? There is so much potential for this game but in my experience of the last many years, Fat Shark is the definition of mediocrity. Their motto is "that's good enough". I wish they would prove me wrong and actually exceed our expectations for once instead of disappointing us. I really hope they learn from the upcoming changes to talents with Winds that people want to real choices and not boring filler.

I'd like to hear your thoughts if you agree or not. Maybe you just don't care at all about the loot and are just playing for the engrossing combat. I don't know. I'm just usually drawn to the loot in the game as much as the gameplay.

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