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Feedback after guild outing

martryn
Guild got together tonight for about four hours and had a great time, but we also talked about some issues we have with the game that, as a guild, we wanted to share. I'm sure a lot of these have already been addressed, but my quick search of the first couple of pages in this subforum did not bring anything up, so….

1. Our cleric died several times tonight, and many of those deaths could have been prevented if we could have applied some sort of healing to her. We would like to suggest some sort of mechanism for healing downed players outside of combat. In the tabletop game this can be accomplished by anyone with a DC 15 Heal check. I'm sure being able to craft a healing kit that can only be applied outside of combat is not too much of a stretch.

2. The aggro in this game is very messed up. As we were running around hexes as a group, sometimes I'd stop and start gathering from a node while the rest of my guild engaged a small group of baddies. Next thing I know I'm being attacked by a goblin, despite not having done anything, and in many cases, not really even being in view of the goblin. In other circumstances one player would try to initiate combat and draw the attention of a group of enemies while they were fully buffed, and then the rest of us could attempt to pick off the stronger ones. You know, use strategy. But when the single player engaged, we'd have spellcasters start turning their attention to the rest of us. Right now we have no idea how aggro works in this game, and it makes devising strategies to defeat tougher mobs pretty difficult, and not in the rewarding sort of way.

3. In general, I think we'd all prefer if combat was slowed down. It's much too hectic, and with all the complicated attacks and targeting issues, the game almost comes across as being one of button mashing at the pace combat is currently fought. Obviously we can't just smash keys and expect good things. There are a lot of nuances in the attack system, but it's difficult to take advantage of it with how quickly combat progresses. I'm not proposing anything radically slower. Just slightly.

4. One of the issues with combat is our health bars. I can't tell how much health I have sometimes. I'll glance over at the rest of my party's health bars, but mine is lost in the haze of red numbers of moving bodies.

5. With respect to trading, and this is an idea that might need to be properly crowdforged, one member of my party had this thought: what if a "merchant" player could go up to a settlement's auction house, and, with the proper permissions, be able to obtain some sort of "tag" from it. This merchant player could then travel a trade route to another settlement, approach that settlement's auction house, and "link" the first settlement's auction house to this settlement. The idea is like a trade caravan thing, but instead of players needing to give, or sell, their items to a middleman, they can post it on their settlement's auction house at whatever cost they feel is fair, and maybe allow certain merchant's permission to "link" their items. The merchant in question gets a small cut of the profits for his trouble, and the player gains access to a larger market without having to hook up individually with another player who might have a conflicting IRL schedule. The number of items a merchant can carry between settlements might be limited, and a trainer in the game could train access to a larger and larger number of items the merchant could link. This link might only be in effect for an hour or two, and then the journey would have to be undertaken again. You could still have bandits attack the merchant, and "linked" items might be subjected to being stolen, but, again, this method allows players with lots of IRL constraints to be able to play the merchant role without having to hawk wares no one is interested in buying.

6. In other online games I've played, pressing [/] allowed you to immediately start typing in the chat window. Especially useful for PMs. Right now you have to physically click on the chat window to type in it.

7. The crafting menus are closed by a small [x] in the upper right hand corner of the window. The Pathfinder Online game is closed by a small [x] next to the other small [x] in the top right hand corner of the window. Several members of my guild have been crafting and then exited the entire game by accident.

8. Keymapping, obviously. I hate the [`] button for switching between weapons. A lot of times I'll try to click [1] and I'll pull out a ranged weapon. Or I'll try to hit my macro key and miss. I know this is coming, but I thought I'd mention it anyways.

9. Game always crashed in full screen mode for me. Maybe it's a resolution thing. I don't know. Right now I have to play the game in window mode.
Kitsune
1) There are Cure potions & tokens that should do the trick. Can someone point him in the right direction?
2) With the current AI, all the mobs in a group seem to split-up and attack various members of a party. So, so long as you are in the party and within minimap/load distance, you have a high chance of being attacked by one of the NPCs in a pull, regardless if you're actually part of the pull or not. That's actually a good example of how the current iteration of the AI can be a problem - good to bring it up. Thanks.
3) I suppose I can agree with that statement. I'm curious how others feel about this. You raise a good point and opinion, though.
4) I believe a general UI overhaul/replacement is in the long-term plans (next year ish or so, maybe?), but we are to expect some improvements to the existing UI in the next several months. Hopefully this will be one. Ryan, can you comment?
5) My tired brain couldn't follow this train of thought - can't respond right now (it's late… ), sorry.
6) Agreed that this is annoying. However, you can either use a double-slash ("//" ) or press Enter then Slash. Either are a workaround, from my understanding.
7) I don't craft enough to notice, heh.
8 ) It is possible to change your keybinding/keymapping. Can someone please link to the guide?
9) Fullscreen is buggy for several players right now, I'm frankly not surprised.
Midnight
The AI didn't work that way, originally. The devs *seem* to have decided they didn't like the orderly way that well organized groups could kill mobs and purposely decided to add lots and lots of chaos to the situation, which has led to fewer people doing escalations and other organized hunting. There are multiple cases of escalations now 4 or 5 hexes from the originating hex of the escalation and those hexes are at ridiculously high levels compared to before the AI change.

Other writers here have dismissed my notion that the AI punishes people who play well when other players make mistakes. But I think it is leading to not only the segregation of players by skill level that I predicted, but also to something I didn't predict… because the population is so small, that segregation simply leads to less grouping overall because those various skill levels don't find each other often enough.

The devs making it more dangerous to hunt mobs in groups as they add husks and gear loss to the game has caused many people to just let escalations go unchecked. e.g. the 100% Nature's Wrath hexes last night. The unpredictable behavior of the AI (combined with item loss on death) also leads to the parties that do form up to dissolve faster (because people want to bank stuff EVEN BEFORE their packs are anywhere near full, rather than risk item loss) and parties (in all games) always tend to lose members when they reach town.
He who wrestles with us strengthens our nerves and sharpens our skill. Our antagonist is our helper.
-Edmund Burke
Jazzlvraz
Kitsune
Can someone please link to the guide?

Here you go.

You can bind multiple keys to a single function, as with:

return = chat
slash = chat
markelphoenix
Am I the only one that thinks the AI is moving in the right direction not the wrong direction? Your complaint is that mobs of supposedly 'intelligent enemies' are suppose to make a strategic choice to follow the first guy that attacks them and IGNORE the large group of people off to the side pelting them with arrows and spells? Especially when the guy who first got their attention is using buffs to outpace them?

THAT sounds like a step in the right direction for AI.
JoJampa
I think the new AI is better as well. It should be hectic and the AI should decide to attack whichever member of the group might represent either a better target (easier kill) or bigger threat.
Giorgio
I understand Midnights concern, but I also believe the current AI is an improvement.

A lot of her points will be addressed with a larger player base, better Escalation rewards, UI improvements, and semi-permanent storage facilities (base camps/small holds); all of which are on "the list".

@OP, thanks for sharing your thoughts, this kind of feedback is very valuable to the devs.
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QMan
I love the new AI mechanic as well. The lack of people grouping isn't being seen in my settlement. I will say that given the current business model and overall lack of things to do is the biggest thing that is keeping someone from logging in right now in PFO from what I'm being told. The AI is not one of those reasons. In fact I've only heard mostly positive feedback about it.
Midnight
markelphoenix
Am I the only one that thinks the AI is moving in the right direction not the wrong direction? Your complaint is that mobs of supposedly 'intelligent enemies' are suppose to make a strategic choice to follow the first guy that attacks them and IGNORE the large group of people off to the side pelting them with arrows and spells? Especially when the guy who first got their attention is using buffs to outpace them?

THAT sounds like a step in the right direction for AI.

I'm for whatever AI gets people to play together, preferably with a minimum of segregation between character levels and player-skill levels.

If you want an AI that simulates how a South Central criminal youth gang would behave when fired on, well, we've got it now.

But when a system is too unfamiliar or too unmanageable, will people spend more of their weekend playing Skyrim, minecraft, Albion, etc. and less time playing PFO?

Will the people who *do* play PFO decide that the 25% full group bonus doesn't outweigh the safety and control of solo play? At least solo you KNOW the whole camp is coming for you and can take the appropriate action (including AOE-ing without wrecking your rep). :-)

I'm not against breaking new ground on AIs, as long as it leads to people PLAYING, and playing together.

To those people that say you are still grouping, all I can say is get to work on those escalation hexes, slackers. ;-P

In my opinion, the escalations are the best indicator of whether people are grouping up and staying grouped for significant lengths of time.
He who wrestles with us strengthens our nerves and sharpens our skill. Our antagonist is our helper.
-Edmund Burke
Gog
1. Our cleric died several times tonight, and many of those deaths could have been prevented if we could have applied some sort of healing to her. We would like to suggest some sort of mechanism for healing downed players outside of combat. In the tabletop game this can be accomplished by anyone with a DC 15 Heal check. I'm sure being able to craft a healing kit that can only be applied outside of combat is not too much of a stretch.

We've provided feedback that the bleeding-out system is clunky and unreliable. With that said, some or all of your members may find it useful to dip into cleric training just enough to equip a focus in their weapon swap and slot a few utility heals and buffs.

2. The aggro in this game is very messed up. As we were running around hexes as a group, sometimes I'd stop and start gathering from a node while the rest of my guild engaged a small group of baddies. Next thing I know I'm being attacked by a goblin, despite not having done anything, and in many cases, not really even being in view of the goblin. In other circumstances one player would try to initiate combat and draw the attention of a group of enemies while they were fully buffed, and then the rest of us could attempt to pick off the stronger ones. You know, use strategy. But when the single player engaged, we'd have spellcasters start turning their attention to the rest of us. Right now we have no idea how aggro works in this game, and it makes devising strategies to defeat tougher mobs pretty difficult, and not in the rewarding sort of way.

Improving AI is an ongoing project, but it makes perfect sense to me that a group of goblins might say "hey, that guy over there 'minding his own business' is part of the same gang as this dude who just attacked us. Git'im!" And the fact that AI here is different from other games and that it will take player effort to learn how it works and how best to combat it does not mean anything is wrong or broken.

3. In general, I think we'd all prefer if combat was slowed down. It's much too hectic, and with all the complicated attacks and targeting issues, the game almost comes across as being one of button mashing at the pace combat is currently fought. Obviously we can't just smash keys and expect good things. There are a lot of nuances in the attack system, but it's difficult to take advantage of it with how quickly combat progresses. I'm not proposing anything radically slower. Just slightly.

I completely agree. Fast combat means a DPS race with no interesting tactical decisionmaking. I'd like to see slower combat too.

4. One of the issues with combat is our health bars. I can't tell how much health I have sometimes. I'll glance over at the rest of my party's health bars, but mine is lost in the haze of red numbers of moving bodies.

It'd probably make sense to display your own health bar with the rest of your partymates in the group HUD. (I'd also like to see group power and stamina in that HUD.) We're expecting some major revisions to the UI in the next few months so we'll see what happens.

5. With respect to trading, and this is an idea that might need to be properly crowdforged, one member of my party had this thought: what if a "merchant" player could go up to a settlement's auction house, and, with the proper permissions, be able to obtain some sort of "tag" from it. This merchant player could then travel a trade route to another settlement, approach that settlement's auction house, and "link" the first settlement's auction house to this settlement. The idea is like a trade caravan thing, but instead of players needing to give, or sell, their items to a middleman, they can post it on their settlement's auction house at whatever cost they feel is fair, and maybe allow certain merchant's permission to "link" their items. The merchant in question gets a small cut of the profits for his trouble, and the player gains access to a larger market without having to hook up individually with another player who might have a conflicting IRL schedule. The number of items a merchant can carry between settlements might be limited, and a trainer in the game could train access to a larger and larger number of items the merchant could link. This link might only be in effect for an hour or two, and then the journey would have to be undertaken again. You could still have bandits attack the merchant, and "linked" items might be subjected to being stolen, but, again, this method allows players with lots of IRL constraints to be able to play the merchant role without having to hawk wares no one is interested in buying.

There are a lot of auction house improvements on the way, but anything that allows automated movement or delivery of goods is unlikely to be among them. Giving merchants the ability to place buy orders will make a huge difference in the way the economy works.
6. In other online games I've played, pressing [/] allowed you to immediately start typing in the chat window. Especially useful for PMs. Right now you have to physically click on the chat window to type in it.

You can press Enter to activate the chat window. Or, if you want to edit your keybinds file, you can add a line "/ = chat" which will let you do the same thing with the slash key… although that doesn't prepopulate the slash, so you actually have to slash twice to get the effect you expect. Again, UI improvements are coming.
^This is Dak (Charlie George). RIP <Guurzak>
 
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