Second beta week-end now CLOSED - 0.3.5.0 feedback thread

#1

Hey everybody,

The second limited beta week-end for Lunar supporters or above has just started. For more information, please see this thread

Feel free to post about your experience, feedback, bugs you’ve encountered, initial impressions ( if it’s your first time playing, or coming back after a long time ) and anything related to the recent patch 0.3.5.0

Have fun !

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#2

This looks like a fantastic patch! Can’t wait to try it out tomorrow :grin: Great to get some detail on the first iteration of capital ship controls, and some really nice other smaller changes too, especially the collision stuff!

I’ll be interested to see how this heat thing pans out…

#3

Impression time!

A huge patch. Always surprised by the amount of changes the team sneaks in while only announcing part of them. Ha.

Armor

Seems to have made the Cruiser in particular more resilient. Shield bleedtrough seems much lower now. We’ve talked about this in the past and this is an interesting change indeed. Once shields drop you are shredded anyway though. Need to play more, especially compared to cap vs cap.

Heat

Is quite limiting. Needs some getting used to. Doesn’t feel like “badass” when perfectly unloading a barage of kinetics on a target but I guess it could … it could be a fun additional skill thing. Timing and such.
Heat bar should be closer to the centre. Like around the outer targeting ring maybe (maybe that’s a bit too extreme). It’s too substantial. Much more important than energy in my opinion. Probably because the punishement for not looking at it is much more severe then when running out of energy. Or at least put it on the inside of the ring.
Looking forward to the external factors. Hope it goes both ways for more interesting, like environments that cool and such.

Physics

Already reported but the ships with the new collision meshes seem to trigger a bug near stations and installations. Even with enough distance to structures the game sometimes briefly slows down a lot and sometimes the ship gets flung away, phase trough or stuck inside a structure. Flavien will look into it.

New collision meshes are sickkkk … flying close to/in capital hulls felt great. Although the one I flew close was not moving. Still great. Inties fly quite fast though. Maybe scales will be nudged a bit in a balancing phase. Stations and Cap Ships are massive but due to how fast the ships are they seem quite tiny.

Controls

Capital controls. Tried it a bit. Seems fine and in the right direction. I tried to look past the incompleteness but not being able to override, “set heading” being hardcoded to ShipForward and some other things made me rather use the other methods.
I think the concept is good. I would like a separate key event for “set heading” though that I could bind and I would suggest making the ship fully execute that command and not require the player hold the button into that direction until the ship has reached the heading. Look into direction. Click/Press. Look back at what you want to fire at. That’s an acceptable compromise in my opinion and fast enough. Curves still can be flown by holding the “set heading” key.
With this the usual “Generic Flight controls” can be (or I hope will be) usable. With those override can be achieved again like in the other modes as well as roll and other things.

See this thread for my input concerning camera controls. Have edited some stuff for clarity and fixed some errors a day after posting.

Another thing to consider additional to my suggestion is to maybe have the camera axis in the capital ship mode not be relative to the ship orientation but something from the world. Like downwards near a planet/moon or “arbitrary plane” in deep space. I think this would make orientation a lot easier.
Often when doing an attack run on a facotry my ship does all kinds of turns, given, yeah, mostly because I turn the ship so I can see, still, its confusing to keep track to where I’m looking.
The “arbitrary plane” in space is debatable though. It would take a lot from the feeling the game has. Most other games feel … gamey because of exactly that arbitrary plane and the introduction of “up down” trough it. I would be glad if someone else or I-Novae can come up with a better solution.
Current behaviour could be used in deep space. Up/Down exists above a moon or planet anyway … even up there at a station … debatable indeed.

HUD / Camera

I like the small changes. HUD has some small imperfections now though. The health and power bars exceed their background (margin) on top and bottom.
I noticed that major warning are displayed even in HUD off.
Select nearest feels a bit weird. I feel like it doesn’t want to select the closer target if the distance difference isn’t big enough … maybe that’s just perception but it felt that way.
Heat alert should come up a bit before overheating. (Maybe also add “Energy Low”)
Suggestion. For ships with manual aim turrets the reticules (both) should follow the view and not be fixed forwards … like for the ships with fixed forward guns. Corvette doesn’t need a reticule as you don’t need to aim with it.
Another thing that can be polished later on is the way the display bars change. Their movement is smooth yes, but there are obvious steps in that movement visible which breaks immersion a bit.

Further

Repeater Gun is fun. I think I also saw a Blaster Version. That version is missing the oomph though. It’s ok for it to have a lower fire rate but the sound effect should be tweaked maybe to make it equally fun as the gun or at least recognisable from other blasters.

Fun thought: Engine Overcharge increases Turret turn speed … ahh? Would be fun maybe.

Gas giant colour … even though it’s closer to my favourite colour I got quite used to our purple Rethe. Huh. Looks more like an Ice Giant now. Variety is key anyway.

Like the renaming of hardpoint sizes. It’s clearer indeed. Egosoft also had to bite that bullet once …

Networking

Quite improved. Error corrections have vastly decreased for me. I still get player ships jittering around every now and then that looks a bit ugly.
Last version I had very abrupt course changes “loss of control” this seems to have been minimised a lot. Thanks! :+1: Performance and Networking are really important parts to make a game enjoyable and I:B looks great in these regards. Well done.

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#4

It’s a very nice patch, lots of cool stuff.:vulcan_salute:
My 2 cents:

Overheating mechanic:
It doesn’t feel fun right now, in the interceptor you can barely fire a load of shots and it overheats instantly. It’s very difficult not to overheat the guns during intense firefights, on the other hand in the bomber it is not that of a problem.
Having the overheating and the energy drain at the same time is a lot to handle, I think if the energy drain wouldn’t be there it would make more sense and be fun and challenging.
As it is right now I find it to be super hard to master. I don’t really have any constructive criticism to improve it. Maybe just making it more forgiving (at least in the interceptor) would be the solution.

Capital ship controls.
Its very awesome, plays much better than the other modes in capships. I agree with lomsor that a set heading button would be better and would enable us to control the ship better. But I would propose that the w key acts as the set heading key, one time press makes the ship turn in that direction until the heading is achieved, and just keeping the w key pressed would just act like it is now (basically free flight). I think with new camera mechanics this would be almost perfect.

New art assets:
The new weapon models look very cool, but the guns on top of the bomber look a bit tiny. Also, was the texture and model of the interceptor improved or am I wrong? Anyway the ships all look very nice. I like the new color and look of the gas giant much better than the original purple one.

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#5

The heat mechanic is experimental. If we find out that it doesn’t work, or adds too much constraints to the combat, it can be removed. But it still needs to be tested for a couple of patches.

I think it (partially) addresses two of my beef concerns:

  1. Players using boht primary and secondary weapons at all times, without a care.

  2. Players firing kinetic weapons for a long, looong time in combat, without a break. Looks a bit stupid.

I know 2) is quite inefficient due to the ammo limitations, but It takes a while to exhaust ammo.

Maybe it’s just a balance issue, and the heat capacity of the interceptor should be increased.

Also take into consideration that we’ll probably have various ship upgrades ( “heat dissipators” ) that can be acquired, once we have their UI in the future. So getting a more heat-efficient interceptor will be doable anyways.

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#6

Simple solution, do away with the Energy stat and have both weapons use heat (independently of course, if one overheats you could use the other).

If there’s one thing I do like about Battlefront II, it’s the way weapons heat up and cool down. It’s unobtrusive, easy to understand and feels different to simply reloading/running out of energy.

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#7

Given it seems like a more diverse amount of weapons are being added to the game, is it in the scope to eventually have some kind of custom loadout screen? I’d like to be able to save a template with maybe some better weapons/scanners and then have an additional option let’s say to respawn in like a tricked out $40 interceptor

edit: apparently I missed this :slight_smile:

How much longer until we can rebind controls in-game?

#8

First impression: The heat capacity on the Interceptor indeed feels quite low.

Automatically switching to free flight mode when your target has been destroyed and you were in match speed mode is a HUGE quality of life improvement! Nicely done!

Not sure if this is intended design or oversight: If you fly in warp, your realspace speedometer forgets your realspace target speed, and if you fly in realspace, your warpsspace speedometer forgets your warpspace target speed. Might be useful to keep the targets saved.

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#9

More stuff:

This event felt a lot more fun than previous. Biggest factor i would say is the new capship controls: They are a HUGE step in the right direction. Though i agree with Lomsor: A single press to align would be preferable to holding forward. If stops you from looking/aiming too long. Speaking of aiming, i have mixed feelings about Capship Manual aim. It feels more engaging, it is very good against ground bases and stations, but it really doesnt feel that convincing for me on capships - i would prefere multi target selection, weapon group to target assignment, generally more “ship management” - kind of gameplay, less FPS elements on Capships. The high number of targeting reticules on capships is also quite confusing. I also dont really like that “forward” is the alignment key, and makes precision speed adjustments and manouvering a bit more of a hazzle than it needs to be - though with target speed up/down keybinds, as i run em, it is quite manageable.

Speaking of cycle key, the battles today were the first where i could really make use of the cycle energy modes/cycle flightmodes keybinds. And it is AWESOME and super useful. Especially in capships, i was switching engines, weapons and shields all the time in the same “strafing run”, not just between strafing runs like in older versions where i had control/key/mouse handling overload pretty fast.

Bomber suffers quite a lot from overheat meachnic - i dont think misiles/torps should add any heat. They already have a cooldown mechanic and it really undermines the already weak combat utility of the Bomber. I would hate to have it reduced to a pure anti-base / anti-station role. Its shotgun is also quite useless in real combat, with some exceptions.

One more thing:
Flavien gave a long explaination how he wants to approach Beta, what is planned and not. Key point being, that he wants to bring all the missing systems into the game as the top priority. That means we will have a lot of unpolished stuff for a while. I think it is really important to make that clear, the whats, hows and whys, to BETA players so they know what to expect. Cause people WILL wonder why some systems stay unpolished/unbalanced for long periods.

Small bits: Small ship hangars are so hard to find, you mostly fly to die/suicide. Capships that are docked should recharge shields a lot faster. Corvettes should NOT self-repair, only teamrepair. There needs to be a better indicator to show if a hostile base/station was already scanned or not. Feedback on shield damage on capships is quite weak - should be more obvious.

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#10

I like the update on a hud, It looks lot more readable.
The alpha on shield/hull/energy/speed is now lot more noticable.
I often lost track of my Prograde / retrograde markers. Often when i was trying to run away.
Making them more pronounced could help a little, but not when you are oriented perpendicular to your velocity vector.
Perhaps little pointer on the screen or a radar, or artificial hud lines indicating your speed (ala Independace war 2)
But i understand what the priorities are atm.

What does the special mode actually do ?
I thought it would fire the warp jam but i am not entirely sure that is the case. :slight_smile:
And if it is not for jam, could we have bind for it. Using menus with HOTAS seem bit tricky.
Time it took me grab a mouse and selecting warp jam with mouse was usually enough for target to get out of the way. :thinking:

I like the heat system. It take away lot of that projectile spamming. It inconspicuously nudged me to focus more on aiming. :smiley:

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#11

I think the main thing is that now with both energy and kinetic weapons fairly tightly limited it can be hard, especially if your accuracy is low, to do enough damage to your target before you’re in cooldown/recharge mode. I think i usually have pretty good accuracy and i was having a lot of trouble landing enough shots before a full heat cycle. Basically, nobody ever wants to spend even more than like a third of their time stuck in a “cooldown”. So maybe one option is to decrease the heating rate and energy usage of weapons now that both have limitations.

Another option is that i noticed heat doesnt reduce at a constant rate, it only starts dropping after a brief cooldown after you’ve stopped firing… but in combat, players will tend to burst, so a lot of the time they don’t spend shooting their heat will just sit there and get worse on the next burst. Maybe it’d be more fun if you could tap fire your kinetic weapons and still have them cool down at a more consistent rate between shots, so that if you pace your shooting overheating isn’t inevitable.

There are lot of other minor points like the corvette being too strong with the new armor and self repair combo but other people have covered that. I figure as flavien was saying its best to get all the features in before overhauling the UI every patch, but i there are some important pieces of information that have occured to me that might be good to note to add later, things like warp jam range, whether a friendly near your corvette needs repairs/ammo, a clear “out of ammo” clicking noise when you try to shoot empty guns (this had me very confused for a bit earlier), lots of little pieces of UI communication to help players acquire knowledge without reading the forums.

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#12

The minor points you’ve listed are important, too. So yeah, make sure to list everything that comes to your mind :slight_smile:

Also, while implementing the missing features for the beta is the priority, that doesn’t mean we can’t iterate on everything else. Especially when it’s very easy/simple changes like the ones you’ve listed. As usual, I’ll be iterating on all systems as we continue to implement the rest of the game.

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#13

Hey!

  1. Torpedoes are fun. I quite enjoyed zooming past a capital ship, shooting a salvo (oh, once I get my hands on the customisation, there will be) and getting away for another run before anyone could catch me. While being a juicy target for an interceptor pilot who manages to read my trajectory and get on my tail, even in vacuum, while I’m trying to run off and warp out. Torpedoing a hangar still feels like a one-way game though (it only takes two shots), but I guess the shileds will fix that.

  2. So about that speed limiting you mentioned. I really hope no subluminal universal speed limit would be implemented - those are just dreadfull IMO. I:B is the only modern spacecombat sim I know that feels exactly like Elite 2 and 3 (and that is one good feeling, I tell ya). I mean, all that’s needed is to reduce relative velosities in battles. You’ve probably considered something similar to those following suggestions already, but anyway ^^’
    a. For the stations: Dust Shields. A magnetically suspended artificial atmosphere that would erode anything moving too fast. Seems grounded, does the job and has already been implemented with micrometeorites and actual atmoshperes.
    b. For the capships: Tractor Beams. Either a turret or a system that pushes/pulls targeted ship in order to reduce the relative velocity. No weird slow-fileds out of nowhere; the Anti Gravity has already been mentioned in the systems menu; if implemended as a cow-abducting alien thing, can be colour-coded (push/pull) for consistensy. Plus, it still leaves a lone capship vulnerable to raids by more than a single bomber, so those, as well as interceptor escorts, would still be relevant in midgame battles.

  3. Do warp disruptors stall the warp drive of a non-warping ship, forcing it to recharge all over again? If they don’t, I think they should, so an attacked capship may grant its escort time to retaliate.

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#14

Yes we are planning on providing a loadout screen.

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#15

Yeah I feel like in the non-cap ships especially, besides the opening engage with an enemy ship, there is no point to weapon overcharge. Once you deplete your initial energy bar and overheat, it’s like you might as well just switch to shield/engine overcharge for the rest of the fight since you’re capped by the energy recharge/heat dissipation rate. Unless you want to do some cheeky drive by bursts then hop into warp while you wait on full energy recharge.

Also should afterburners be sharing the same resource pool as energy weapons? I find myself needing to change directions often in-combat and logically it feels like afterburning would make sense to use up some fuel instead as after I complete the course correction I have no energy left to fire weapons.

p.s. Add team chat. The comms are okay for basic stuff, but it’s hard to really tell someone to go in first and you’ll follow them in. Maybe like holding shift while hitting enter puts chat into global instead of team.

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#16

That’s a good point, but I wonder if it wouldn’t lead to an over abundance of bars / meters on the HUD ? We already have:

  • hit points
  • shields ( and in the future they might be directional, each side having its own sub-bar )
  • energy
  • heat
  • fuel ?

That’s a lot of information to show on the HUD…

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#17

I had been thinking before that boost could both generate heat and use energy, so that using boost kinda “evenly” impacts both types of weapons. That might be enough without adding any extra bars or anything. The heat cooldown rate/capacity might need more adjusting as a result though.

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#18

Let’s break it down. Currently:

  • Energy weapons consume energy and don’t generate heat.
  • Kinetic weapons generate heat.
  • Boost consumes energy and doesn’t generate heat.

So at the moment 2 systems are limited by energy and one is limited by heat. Yet the 2 energy systems are different types of system - weapon/boost.

If both mechanics are wanted, I see a couple of ways to improve things:

  • both weapons (energy and kinetic) produce heat and neither consumes energy. Boost consumes energy. (This rationalises the two weapons systems).
  • Or, heat is generated by all 3 systems and the rest stays as it is.
  • Or, to simplify things, get rid of energy completely and have all systems generate heat (I know this has been suggested before). If it was this though, I think each system should generate it’s own heat, so if one weapon overheats you may still be able to use the others.

I prefer option one I think: weapons generate heat, Boost uses up energy.

Possibly shields could be linked in some way too.

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#19

What I like with the current system though is that it forces the player to alternate between kinetic and blasters to maximize efficiency. You can’t just blindly keep both primary and secondary fire pressed without a care.

If both types of weapons generated heat and neither consumed energy, we’be be back at square 1 where players would simply press both buttons to maximize fire output without a care.

I do think separating boost energy from weapons energy is interesting though. But I’m afraid this would lead to even more bars/meters on the HUD and increase the skill floor for new players.

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#20

True, this is why I wondered about separate heat for each weapon. Perhaps kinetic weapons build heat faster (encouraging shorter bursts) whereas energy weapons last longer. This wouldn’t necessarily need to take up much screen real estate, especially if we use a similar method to what you’ve created already - a vanishing orange bar or similar. One on each side of the HUD?
If this happened, we might also be able to do away with the current energy meter, or repurpose, or change it.

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