Author Topic: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )  (Read 3361 times)

Placelord

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Update:
https://www.spacelordsthegame.com/community/index.php?topic=4606.0

Oh, well after reading that I really don't see how this system is currently so hit or miss. It looks like they've spent a lot of time thinking about this and it's logic is pretty well justified. I'm confident that no overhaul is needed, just tweaking to find the new sweet spot.

Original post:
I want to preface this rant by saying that I have been largely in favor of pvp and do not want to see it removed. Also, that mse is and has been taking steps to balance pvp. Despite the detail I go into, I'm not trying to imply that they are clueless. I'm just conveying my experience to see if that experience is shared.

I've read a lot of people talking about antags ruining thier game, (not so much anymore since the majority of posters here are likely lv150+). I'm wondering if I'm the only one who is having trouble with the opposite experience.

I am having a terrible time at being an antag. Maybe I'm just bad at it, but I honestly don't remember the last time I wasn't ground into powder. This is extremely frustrating because xp gain is dependent on a balanced aequalibrium.

I'm starting to feel like antag isn't viable until you get over lv 100.  I rarely see balanced matchups regardless of which side I'm on. It's either an extremely high lv antag vs a baby crew or a mid lv antag vs a stacked roster. It's rare that the matchmaking finds a middle ground.

I'm around lv 60 FYI. When I'm up against a low lv squad I usually don't go ape out of some silly sense of honor. The thing is, I should be, because the only victory I'm likely to secure is by playing dirty.

The most common matchup I get as antag is lv 50, a 75, a 5, and a 260. Between cards, forge, base stats, and the reduced spawn rate/objective requirements; that 260 can solo the stage, np.

It's no fun going up against a raider that can down me in 1-2 actions, and all I'm getting for backup is 5 ads and maybe 2 elites. Yeah, that's really going to slow them down. There's a clear power level gap that needs to be addressed. It's getting like DBZ up in here and I'm tien.

What do you all think? Is it a problem, and could it be fixed?
« Last Edit: December 20, 2018, 07:29:25 AM by Placelord »

XjabberwockieX

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #1 on: December 19, 2018, 05:57:25 AM
If your main desire to antag is driven by the aequilibrium bar for xp then don't spawn. I have been in matches where the antagonist has had plenty of back up and games where they were basically all alone. Antags are almost always going to have a hard time against an experienced group that is put together beforehand, because they know how to quickly eliminate the adds and they work together to take out the Antagonist. I personally don't spawn as an antag when I need to balance the aequilibrium because it's not my thing but to each their own. 

Angeles2099

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #2 on: December 19, 2018, 06:51:54 AM
Playing Antagonist is an Up-Hill battle and more often than not your going to lose and get jumps the thing is to try anyway. If you actually try to have fun in that mode your Equalibrium will balance out real quick, faster than it would by staying idle.
Idk perhaps you just need to find that right character with the right gun.  I like up hill battles, I prefer it over handling droves of grunts.

Placelord

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #3 on: December 19, 2018, 08:15:45 AM
Does sitting as antag move the needle? That's good to know. But I used to go antag more for the chance to test my skill. I actually agree that coordination being the best weapon against antags is a good thing. I'd just like to see the huge gaps less often.

Going back to the DBZ metaphor; I think you can scale matchups in a similar way. There's a sort of bell curve of power escalation that seriously narrows competition. You can throw an endless amount of yamchas at Goku and he's still going to win. Or, if the yamchas do win it's likely more a matter of probability than performance.

I'm not knocking investing and improving. I'm for an uphill battle too, just not a hill so steep it might as well be a wall. I'm just advocating for tiers really. Relatively evenly matched competition serves as a test of skill whereas unbalanced matchups neccesatate luck and underhanded tactics.

I'm thinking that if matches are bound to have that one hugely over leveled player; then whatever algorithm is modulating difficulty should better account for that.


Mostly, I'm hoping for feedback from other players that are mid level(50-150). Are they also hitting a wall in pvp or am I just getting bad matchmaking luck?

Angeles2099

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #4 on: December 19, 2018, 09:17:59 AM
I think MS has done a great job with balancing the levels out for the raiders including the MMR as it relates to the CPUs. But the struggle between a single Antagonist vs 4 Raiders who all can Revive and huddle. The fact that it takes a flawless set up or underhanded tricks as you said shows that theirs a real Pvp element that hasn't been found or implemented yet.
.....well I digress, hopefully you figure things out.

LordDraco3

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #5 on: December 19, 2018, 06:23:53 PM
I have played for exactly 1 year now, and antagonist is currently the WORST it has ever been in my entire play time. If you feel like you suck right now, it's because antags received a massive nerf accross the board this patch. The mode is nearly unplayable. I feel like a wimp every game now, it's a struggle to get anything done because:

-Multiple missions received nerfs to AI spawns "when antagonist is present"
-Multiple missions received "15% reduction in survive timer when antagonist is present"

When I was reading patch notes explaining all the missions that reduces enemy spawns with an antagonist, I literally said "So 15% less than 0 enemies is still 0, right?" The spawn rate was already a total joke before this patch, but they have been reduced even more. I would routinely find myself dead and waiting to respawn, spinning my camera around to see ZERO hostile enemies on the map to even distract the raiders.

But now, playing at 70+ MMR or in the 50's, all AI are basically toddlers feeding ammo and aleph to raiders. I watch as they deal virtually no damage at all, so the raiders can completely ignore them and dogpile 4v1 on the antag, and if that happens every single spawn, antag will lose every time.

As a mainly antagonist player, I am extremely disappointed in how terrible things have become for us. When I play Raider since the patch, the game is awesome, things are pretty great! But antags are basically child's play at this point, because it makes the mission easier than a solo easy mode.

For those playing at home, I don't need the AI to "win for me" but I DO need them to be a big enough threat to distract the raiders and divide their attention so every respawn doesn't become 4v1. If the raiders know that enemies don't even hurt them, then they will just ignore them until the only threat in the entire mission is dead and then clean up the 2 grunts that might have spawned during that time.


Level9Drow

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #6 on: December 19, 2018, 06:35:10 PM
I can confirm this by what I see as peaceful antag. AI is very low, and I am at 40 MMR. I can only imagine it's worse at drastically higher MMRs.

MSE_Hellath

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #7 on: December 19, 2018, 06:43:17 PM
Thanks all for sharing your thoughts. As you already know, Spacelords is a living, ongoing game, and we make adjustments based in the data we receive from hundreds of games -they are not done arbitrarily.

Of course, the data is not infalible. Please, keep adding feedback to this thread. The more data we have that goes beyond the merely numerical, the more informed our future adjustements will be.

Just a quick reminder: the Antagonist will be the start of the 4th milestone of the Spacelords Roadmap: The Aurora Spectres. Its role will be  heavily revised once we get there.

Once again, thanks all for your support.

PohtHehd

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #8 on: December 19, 2018, 07:48:44 PM
Thanks all for sharing your thoughts. As you already know, Spacelords is a living, ongoing game, and we make adjustments based in the data we receive from hundreds of games -they are not done arbitrarily.

Of course, the data is not infalible. Please, keep adding feedback to this thread. The more data we have that goes beyond the merely numerical, the more informed our future adjustements will be.

Just a quick reminder: the Antagonist will be the start of the 4th milestone of the Spacelords Roadmap: The Aurora Spectres. Its role will be  heavily revised once we get there.

Once again, thanks all for your support.

A lot of these comments have been made for a long time outside of this thread. Draco said it is the worst he has ever seen it since a year but I haven't played for a year and I can tell things have not gotten much better even with the daily adjustments that are made to the system.

I played at 50% MMR as Raider and got matched with a bunch of guys at my similar player level. We got an Antagonist which was far far lower level than even our lowest level Raider. This Antagonist was rated as 34% difficulty and the AI became gods. There were so many of them it was absolutely ridiculous.

This was on White Noise; we had swarms of miners, a Nimrod that was de-graving every 20 seconds with a 5 second warning(the Antagonist could not even keep up) and Elites that shrug off a Yama Boom Boom shot to the face. The difference in MMR made the match a joke. The Antagonist got so many kills because..we just had no option but to retreat from the swarms of AI. We did win though. The Nimrod was goin' bonkers near the end and the Antagonist and the AI was getting de-graved like every second, we all just took to running from the de-gravs because they came so fast and without warning. It was unlike any White Noise match I have ever played. It was nonsense.

On the other hand, when I am given an Antagonist that is similarly rated to my own MMR then I see the AI is absolute garbage. Makes it so easy that Antagonists just quit more often than not. They basically never win, I haven't lost to one in awhile because..I can just bum rush them like usual.

Nothing has changed, except for the range of MMRs makes it far more likely for me to run into low MMR Antagonist so I get to see super AI more often cause of all the little baby Antagonists and shit AI more often when I meet an Antagonist at my MMR or higher. And as Draco and Placelord said. There are so many nerfs to Antagonist one begins to wonder if MSE is folding to the constant pressure from the PvE crowd to remove the feature. It certainly looks like that is where things are going.

There is a difference between making it harder for more skilled players and making it negligible if you spawn or not. Currently, and as before, there is really no point in having a high MMR. Now with a 8.0 you get substantial rewards and you can be 30% MMR for that, so Drow is right also. Lowering your MMR is still a very viable strategy towards manipulating the difficulty and there is still little reason not to do so.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2018, 08:15:48 PM by PohtHehd »

Placelord

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #9 on: December 19, 2018, 08:14:30 PM
That's awesome, hellath. It's nice to remember that improvements are always on the horizon.

As far as data goes;. , I am in the 60 - 70 lv range. My mmr hovers between 35 - 45. My difficulties are relatively recent which is why I'm giving ranges. My most common play session times are on weekday evenings.

The base issue I'm having is that the difficulty isn't compensating for the involvement of an extremely high level raider (lv 250+) or stacked squads (average team lv 70). In both situations the current level of ad reduction is too aggressive.

My theory is that balancing mid level play is much more fiddly than balancing for high and low level play given there's such a broad gradient. Or, it's a conflagration of my unique circumstances and luck. IE population lv distribution likely isn't as uniform on a Tuesday night as it would be on a Saturday.

Given that, I would find it hard to nail down an effective solution. Perhaps if I better understood how mmr is calculated and what fators modulate difficulty, my perception of this issue would change.

PohtHehd

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #10 on: December 19, 2018, 08:22:08 PM
Given that, I would find it hard to nail down an effective solution. Perhaps if I better understood how mmr is calculated and what fators modulate difficulty, my perception of this issue would change.

Awhile back they shared a lot of information towards the intent of the MMR system. Basically, they shoot for a 50% win-loss ratio with how MMR affects difficulty.

The effective solutions are; lower your MMR so you always have the AI advantage as an Antagonist or play as Raider.

LordDraco3

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #11 on: December 19, 2018, 08:40:11 PM
My reasoning behind why it is worse now than ever, is because now every game I play antagonist has an extremely easy mission backing me up which means I have to carry everything myself. This isn't a new phenomenon, but it used to be tied to MMR, like Poh said.

There was a period of time pre-Spacelords where the difference between normal AI, and Toddlers or Terminators, was simply a difference of about 9% MMR between each other-- whichever side was lower had the advantage, and I have videos of both to prove it. At least that was somewhat predictable, even if matchmaking is uncontrollable, if you keep your MMR near the majority of players it was less likely to present a large difference matchup. (Unless you're me where it was always 10% less no matter what my MMR is lolololol I drop to 35 MMR and it'll send me up against a team that's 23%)

Now, MMR difference doesn't seem to matter, no matter what MMR you play at and what the raiders are, all antag matches have Toddlers. I can confirm fighting at above 70% I had no support, and thought for sure the raiders were low. Nope, they actually like 2 or 3 % ABOVE me and I still had Toddler support. I dropped to 55% MMR, still getting no support from the mission. MMR doesn't seem to care now, it's just consistently stacked in the raiders favor. Lots of players are reporting that the game is EASIER with antag now, and having no antag means really strong AI.

If I play Short Fused and allow them to reach part 2, the extractors now require only 3 aleph with antag present.

XjabberwockieX

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #12 on: December 19, 2018, 10:43:39 PM
Well I can tell you that when your mmr is 40 points higher than the Antagonist the map gives them a bunch of terminators. My group was low 90's mmr and antag had 50 and we lost because of all the adds so...that sucked.

Level9Drow

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #13 on: December 19, 2018, 10:54:40 PM
That's why I keep my MMR low. If I'm with a group and we get squashed and the end screen says it's a high MMR after factoring my low average I apologize to the group and let them know the MMR average is too high for any productive gains to be reasonably farmed with any decent level of success. I sadly end up leaving the group and taking my chances in solo queue. I try and group with people with low MMR for the sake of progress and risk verse reward. It's never a personal thing.

LordDraco3

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Re: My current impression of pvp. ( Ad spawns, matchmaking )
Reply #14 on: December 19, 2018, 11:44:50 PM
I don't understand how a 50 can get paired into the 90's before getting some other team first. I antag a LOT and I'm higher than a vast majority of the teams I fight. If they are ever higher than me, it's only a marginal difference, never 10+.

I mean I've had it happen when I'm raider, but HOW does it happen, and how have I never been that antag???