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  1. #1
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    Default Why, for me, Epic difficulty isn't all that fun

    Let's face it, epic is all about exploiting the weak AI of the game and high hit point damage per second. Sure, there are some minute tactical choices that don't involve exploiting the AI, but they are more "choose this spell, let melees beat on things" than actual tactics.

    Then, there's being a melee. As everybody knows, all you shoot for is hit points and saves. Armor class is useless unless you can obtain one that's absurdly high. In order to do so, you pretty much must sacrifice so much damage output that you might as well be tickling the enemy with a feather duster. I will grant that this mirrors PnP, where at high level every melee (including the enemy) states the same thing every round: "I full found attack with full power attack." Just because this is true does not mean that DDO should follow suit.

    What would I like to see? Adjustments to enemy attack bonuses and attack rates (lower attack bonuses, increase attack rate) to make armor class worthwhile. Remove blanket immunities (with the sole exception to Vorpal, which should not be an ideal choice of weapon). Allow stat damage to be a good way to deal with the enemy (in PnP at this level you're a moron if you're trying to use hit point damage anyway, but I wouldn't go that far either). Really, the focus should be on making characters that aren't high DPS meatsacks more useful.

    As far as spell usage goes, we need more options. Force Cage, Imprisonment, Prismatic Sphere, Maze (heck, we already have the graphic from the banishment effect of prismatic spray/ray), etc. I will grant that some of these are similar to Otto's Irresistable Dance (but worse, in a way, since often the subject cannot be attacked), but at least some are of a different level. Imprisonment is the grand-daddy of Trap the Soul, but at least it is a touch spell. Making debuffing useful would also be nice.

    I, mostly, would like to see Epic be more than just a war of attrition between PC DPS, PC healing, and monster DPS (with the deciding factor being that monsters are incredibly stupid). I'd also like to see spell casters have more options than just Wall of Fire, Mass Hold Monster and Otto's Irresistable Dance.

    I'm sure I'll catch some flak for this, oh well. It's just my 2 cp.

  2. #2
    Community Member Tumarek's Avatar
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    agreed... D&D offers so many possibilities which are more fun then only high DPS and HP. Lots of great Multiclass chars with new ideas just fade away once they hit epic.

  3. #3
    Community Member saber7's Avatar
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    Default Epic

    I completely agree with you. I have a caster myself who has run several epic runs but I don't find them entertaining so I really have ignored this section of DDO. Epic is something that I would love to do but I have no interest in because it is so limited in the way you must comeplete it. More flexiblity would be nice.
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  5. #5
    Community Member Josh's Avatar
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    I always laugh when guys like Shade talk about "tactics" in epic. Just like Asp said, the tactics are:

    1) be a max dps toon
    2) be a caster that used 3-4 spells

    Wow, that's complicated for sure, and definitely requires some complex "tactics".
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  6. #6
    Community Member krud's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Josh View Post
    I always laugh when guys like Shade talk about "tactics" in epic. Just like Asp said, the tactics are:

    1) be a max dps toon
    2) be a caster that used 3-4 spells

    Wow, that's complicated for sure, and definitely requires some complex "tactics".
    Everyone wants to zerg epic just like they do everything else. The end result is beat it into submission with resources. Pulling mobs one at a time is unheard of. If I could ever find a group that would ever slow down enough for me to do that, it would be an easy run resource-wise, but nobody ever does. It's the same old, same old "I just want my lootz as fast as I can", so we end up with the above two "tactics".
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  7. #7
    Community Member Samadhi's Avatar
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    flak? no way /agreed.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by krud View Post
    Everyone wants to zerg epic just like they do everything else. The end result is beat it into submission with resources. Pulling mobs one at a time is unheard of. If I could ever find a group that would ever slow down enough for me to do that, it would be an easy run resource-wise, but nobody ever does. It's the same old, same old "I just want my lootz as fast as I can", so we end up with the above two "tactics".
    This is not necessarily true. I have been in parties that use pulling and other tactics to minimize resource consumption.

    However, those parties were not exactly using "tactics," instead it was more like taking advantage of stupid AI.

  9. #9
    Community Member Pyromaniac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by krud View Post
    Everyone wants to zerg epic just like they do everything else.
    When you need to grind about 1000 epic dungeon tokens across your account, speed is important.
    Thanks for the long time forum user purge of Aug '10 (Sarcasm for those who don't get it)

  10. #10

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    Thank you for the feedback guys.

    We, designers, try to make the encounters unique and interesting first, challenging second. Some things we have control over, some we don't, as to the inflated hitpoints, those come with the expectation of players' dps output. If you balance a dungeon for a six man group, the fights will feel 'slow' to a solo player, and vice versa, a dungeon balanced for solo play will cause a full group to enter a zerging trance as you try to get a hit in before the monster falls down dead.

    Monster AI tends to be a limitation of the engine - smart AIs cause more server lag. Boy am I going to get quoted on that or what.

    I might be rumbling after a long day and coming down with a cold, but I guess all I wanted to say here is that by all means post your feedback. At the end of the day it's all about you having fun in our game.

    We want to hear when you do and we definitely want to hear when you don't. What worked and what didn't: it helps us make you a better game.

    Thanks.
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  11. #11
    Community Member Montrose's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by krud View Post
    Everyone wants to zerg epic just like they do everything else. The end result is beat it into submission with resources. Pulling mobs one at a time is unheard of. If I could ever find a group that would ever slow down enough for me to do that, it would be an easy run resource-wise, but nobody ever does. It's the same old, same old "I just want my lootz as fast as I can", so we end up with the above two "tactics".
    Players will tend towards whatever gives them the higest rewards in the least amount of time. That's pretty much human nature.

    Resources in this game are very cheap. Max level characters are essentially swimming in plat. So much so, that the main currency at level cap is ingredients such as red dragon scales and shroud larges.

    It's not a flaw of the players, it's a flaw of the game design.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by FlimsyFirewood View Post
    Thank you for the feedback guys.

    We, designers, try to make the encounters unique and interesting first, challenging second. Some things we have control over, some we don't, as to the inflated hitpoints, those come with the expectation of players' dps output. If you balance a dungeon for a six man group, the fights will feel 'slow' to a solo player, and vice versa, a dungeon balanced for solo play will cause a full group to enter a zerging trance as you try to get a hit in before the monster falls down dead.

    Monster AI tends to be a limitation of the engine - smart AIs cause more server lag. Boy am I going to get quoted on that or what.

    I might be rumbling after a long day and coming down with a cold, but I guess all I wanted to say here is that by all means post your feedback. At the end of the day it's all about you having fun in our game.

    We want to hear when you do and we definitely want to hear when you don't. What worked and what didn't: it helps us make you a better game.

    Thanks.
    Thanks for stopping by and reading my post, FF.

    I'm not so much complaining about the inflated hit points, I fully understand why they are the way they are.

    However, it should be possible for a highly geared AC character to be able to tank as well. The downfall of the fighter in PnP is that they cannot tank at high level. This should not be replicated in DDO, it should, in fact, be remedied.

  13. #13
    Hatchery Founder Ganak's Avatar
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    My limited excursions into Epic content are a result of:

    1. Have spent a great deal of time in those dungeons prior to epic. Same content with super mob hp and less options on how to run the content.

    2. Loot. Although some items are pretty sweet, there is no "gotta get it" items for me (SoS maybe). Although that will change when Gianthold epic is released. Epic Kardin's eye anyone?


    Epic is good for the game and many really like it. Epic content certainly has a place in the game. However, I fear that epic content will supplant new level 18+ quests and more importantly, raids. The reason? I suspect because epic content is easier to turn out.


    So I hear the new quests next update will be level 9? The gap in quests in this game is level 16-20. I get it that with the success of F2P and the revenue that is tied into the newer players will get the most attention. It's a business.

    However, those F2P players who joined and the many that went VIP are far enough into the game to be spending a lot of time at the higher levels.

    New high level non-epic content must be a priority in my opinion.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by FlimsyFirewood View Post
    Thank you for the feedback guys.

    We, designers, try to make the encounters unique and interesting first, challenging second. Some things we have control over, some we don't, as to the inflated hitpoints, those come with the expectation of players' dps output. If you balance a dungeon for a six man group, the fights will feel 'slow' to a solo player, and vice versa, a dungeon balanced for solo play will cause a full group to enter a zerging trance as you try to get a hit in before the monster falls down dead.

    Monster AI tends to be a limitation of the engine - smart AIs cause more server lag. Boy am I going to get quoted on that or what.

    I might be rumbling after a long day and coming down with a cold, but I guess all I wanted to say here is that by all means post your feedback. At the end of the day it's all about you having fun in our game.

    We want to hear when you do and we definitely want to hear when you don't.
    What worked and what didn't: it helps us make you a better game.

    Thanks.
    Constantly having to sort inventory to make space because no additional inventory has been provided for years is not fun - could you give us additional space or revamp the inventory system sometime this millenium?

    The end-fight in SoS is not fun and is actually depressing since I know odds are I'm not any closer to getting a DT rune I'm gonna be happy with. Could we somehow improve DT crafting sometime this millenium?

    How about greensteel deconstruction? Having to grind shroud a thousand more times because game changes make current weapons sub-optimal is definitely not fun. Also, ability to exchange shroud ingredients would be nice, ditto for epic tokens.

    Make these changes and I can actually focus on having "fun" in the game and start actually criticizing the design of the quests instead of the game itself.
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  15. #15
    Community Member valorik's Avatar
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    100% agreed with you asp, I've almost completely stopped running epic lately, it's amazing how much more I like the game when I'm not running epic.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobbinB View Post
    Constantly having to sort inventory to make space because no additional inventory has been provided for years is not fun - could you give us additional space or revamp the inventory system sometime this millenium?

    The end-fight in SoS is not fun and is actually depressing since I know odds are I'm not any closer to getting a DT rune I'm gonna be happy with. Could we somehow improve DT crafting sometime this millenium?

    How about greensteel deconstruction? Having to grind shroud a thousand more times because game changes make current weapons sub-optimal is definitely not fun. Also, ability to exchange shroud ingredients would be nice, ditto for epic tokens.

    Make these changes and I can actually focus on having "fun" in the game and start actually criticizing the design of the quests instead of the game itself.
    I am sorry that you are frustrated with these things, but please leave the negative tone out of this thread. Thanks.

  17. #17

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    Of course u want to zerg, what the hell think game is about after the first 20 times you beat the dungeon. To see if can run it slower? Maybe run it different.

    Though I do agree real stragey is lacking, find jump spots or use handiful of spells and must dps. The point is the only real change in must epic quest is hp and damage they do. Though I do love the epic dragon it was different and fun. Although from the begining they been doing this AC rules/dps rules/Ac rules/dps rules... you get the point just go back and forth. Think they would learn by now make both useiful in all game stuff. That does not mean have to make every dungeon Ac great in, but some that Ac better way to go and others dps matters little more.

    Get a clue though this 130Ac shade talks about is not reasonible to attain, its must use house d pots woot 3min pots that have to grind forever to get. Second prob. needs all kind cickie going so might have that AC for about 20secs if lucky and last prob. have to be tumbling 0dps when doing that woot. Right now realistic AC with raid buffs is 100AC, (Now I say raid buffs because when going have bard, pally and cleric in group all sametime in none raids.) So normal group buffs running high 80's maybe 90. These ac decked out to the max, how much time do this barb's have to spend to get couple decide weapons.. (Note: Shroud weapons not hard) Now yes other things help, but just with these weapons already epic ready to go. I see might be a good idea to make the easier class to build better on epic :-). (Real hard to max out strength con rest in dex :-).


    Last thing epic crafting is really just huge grind for little gain, weak sauce in my mind. If they lower the cost little or made the abilties adding little better it might help. Though there is many things came out I love. (Dragon :-), Ice games , Egg runs (even though I do wish they gave out more free runs hehe) I really hope they listen and add epic dungeons were ac matters and balance out epic dungeons like sometimes dps matters more, others ac, and others being a caster. That would be kewl to me. more fun doing different dungeons then same stragies for all.

  18. #18
    Community Member Murderface's Avatar
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    Default lol heh why of course you wouldnt find it fun

    Quote Originally Posted by Aspenor View Post
    Let's face it
    I dislike the grind of it monsters with so many hp are boring. looking for a sos seal for a few months really boring.
    i liked the idea of fixed attack rate
    to mirror characters attack at whatever bab they are at. people would prolly be alot more wary of cr ratings then :P
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  19. #19
    Community Member The_Ick's Avatar
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    Default My Take on Epic stuff...

    This is my take on the Epic stuff… I see the point of it and I think it has its place, but I know that it is enough to sustain a feel of “continuing content at end game”. From my experience it isn’t so much of a challenge and just a resource and time drain. It is neat to have done once or twice, but it doesn’t breathe new life into the quests. At least not for me.

    Simplified, I don’t think that the epic loot warrants the grind fest that the Epic Quests really are. I think it is a neat concept, but the resource vs. reward ratio is kind of low. The “epic” items are more like “really good items”, not really Epic and a lot of them are very build specific. I think a better way to make the items more Epic is to make more of a crafting system like the shroud. Where you ultimately create blanks and use the epic items to create “Epic” gear with combinations that would be best for you (the player). Working towards building something that you specifically want always seems like less of a grind then just randomly pulling items. Look at the popularity of shroud items (little randomness) vs. the popularity of the DragonTouched Armor (complete randomness).

    As for the quests themselves, I would say they are OK. It’s really the same dungeons but you have to go a little slower. There is not real incentive.

    So to really get to the point, I think the epic quests are a good idea, but I think they need to be the grind for something bigger. Hopefully housing will be that golden carrot that will make people want to run them. If not then something else perhaps. It is a ongoing debate in the community on whether DDO needs more quests or more “other stuff” (housing, crafting, etc…). I personally think you will satisfy more people with “other stuff” even though they don’t like to admit it. Since we (the community) outnumber the dev by about a zillion to one, you will never be able to produce enough content to keep us happy.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Murderface View Post
    I dislike the grind of it monsters with so many hp are
    I have grown accustomed to grinds in DDO, so that's not my personal major complaint.

    What I don't like is that the gameplay the epic grind (and it is quite an epic grind) entails over long periods of time is boring. A spell caster gets by on 3 or 4 spells for months. A melee holds his right mouse button for hours upon hours, occasionally clicking on a boost, rage, etc.

    The grind itself doesn't bother me, but the boredom of the grind does.

    I do understand that many people don't like the amount of grinding needed, but I feel it could be a lot worse (look at Reaver's Refuge, at least epics are BtA).

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