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Closed Beta Report Summary: 12.11.17 and 12.18.17


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dance210 #1 Posted 20 December 2017 - 09:31 PM

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Commanders!

 

Below is the summary for our weekly Community Report! As always, this is the cliff note version of the full report, so if y'all have any questions, please ask. This report focuses on new bug reports as well as feedback from the community. This report should not be taken to mean that all the feedback will be used, only that it has been passed on.

 

Key Items

 

  • Tone down Commander abilities.
  • Continue to review and rebalance Commander's, units, and abilities (e.g. Barrage, Defiance, pikes, scorpions, cavalry charge, etc.)
  • Review and rebalance Barbarian faction commanders and abilities
  • Review friendly fire punishement
  • Allow customization of ping and telestration colors
  • Allow players to gift gold/bundles to other players
  • Review matchmaking balance
  • Improve chat functions, including allowing parties to chat and opening separate PM box
  • Allow players to report and/or commend others in-game after a battle ends
  • Limit Commande abilities to the tier of the unit selected

 

Bugs

  • Players suddenly encounter high CPU lag
  • Player received “Fatal Error - Untrusted system file (C:\Windows\System32\scpicli.dll)” when loading the client
  • Points shown in game scoreboard do not match up to points shown in the after battle report when player has wardog units equipped. The points are usually higher in-game, likely because contribution by the wardogs does not count in the after battle report
  • Player was unable to turn off replays, even if that option was selected
  • Player attemped to load the client; after going through EAC start-up, the client doesn’t load and the Play button on the WGC is still orange. Player hits “Play” again and two instances of the client attempt to load
  • Occasionally, client will close during or immediately after a match with no warning or error
  • After pressing the “Play” button, the game loaded to ¼ screen sized window, a black screen in the top left quadrant of the monitor. Player clicked until it went full screen, but it was still black. Player then ALT+Tab to minimize the screen. Game finally loaded but gave the error “database loading problem: a table contains no records.”
  • Graphics issue with fog of war. The vision is often sporadic and patchy, rather than a continuous field of view through the fog of war (see screenshot: http://forum.totalwararena.com/index.php?/topic/2913-fog-of-warfield-of-vision-glitch/)
  • Player was in a party and logged off. The player showed as “Offline” in the party window; however, the player showed as “In Party Frontend” in Friend List
  • “Failed to Connect to Profile Server” error
  • When playing on different computers, the player profile information is not consistent. One computer may say 500 battles played with the second says 200 battles played
  • Player was unable to damage enemy cavalry when attacking
  • The names on the friends list still do not show
  • When 3D render buffer scale is reduced below 1.0, the projectile highlighter will become misaligned from the projectile. The misalignment becomes greater as 3D render buffer scale reduces
  • Continuing potential issue with Windows 10 Fall Creators Update: “bad_module_info cannot open” bug when loading the tutorial
  • Continuing “Matchmaking Failed” and “Arbitration Failed” error while queueing for a battle
  • Players marked as “AFK” by the automated system even though they are actively participating in the battle

 



MikeLapTrap #2 Posted 20 December 2017 - 10:37 PM

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Good summary.

 

Also look into high tier units some of them actually get weaker stat wise as you go higher as well as some T9 units are better than T10 due to the unique unit ability they have.



Letum_Cruento #3 Posted 25 December 2017 - 05:59 AM

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View PostMikeLapTrap, on 20 December 2017 - 10:37 PM, said:

Goit seemif shield a little absurd that the only Roman troopsd summary.

 

Also looidea to into high tier units some of them actually get weaker stat wise as you go higher as well as some T9 units are better than T10 due to the unique unit ability they have.

 

I actually like this, as far as unique unit abilities.  It introduces another level of differentation beyond just commander abilities.  My observation has been that a lot of it is a trade off, higher stats vs. ability higher valued by some players.  Its pick your poison. For some  battles, I throw in a Tier 8 unit for its ability with two Tier 9 units.  The combo works better than going either all Tier 8 or all Tier 9 in certain tactics.

 

Another example of this is Germanicus being only commander with Testudo (or any raise shield ability, except T7 Triarii).  On the face, it seems unrealistic that only Roman troops led by Germanicus have the idea to use their shields against incoming fire.  Under the other three commanders, the very same troops lose all sense regarding the helpfulness of shields vs. missiles. Frankly, sems a little ridiculous.  Im sure its done for play balance, but surely there is a better way to balance commander abilities.  As an example, let other commanders order "raise shields" with a weaker effect on missiles.  Missile troops have to be able to do damage, but constraining troops that know to do so under one commander forget how under the I ther three.  Maybe I'm missing something

 

Or maybe, have types of shields (a separate consumable slot) with one type of shield better against missile troops, but weaker in melee and a different type of shield that does vice versa.  Just a thought.

 

The game must have balance across many unit types and commanders.  Thats difficult.  But, in a game like this, historical accuracy and common sense (or at least a trade-off that makes sense) is a big draw also.

 

Just a thought.



Letum_Cruento #4 Posted 25 December 2017 - 06:08 AM

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View Postdance210, on 20 December 2017 - 09:31 PM, said:

Commanders!

 

Below is the summary for our weekly Community Report! As always, this instances the cliff note version of the full report, so if y'all have any questions, please ask. This report focuses on new bug reports as well as feedback from the community. This report should not be taken to mean that all the feedback will be used, only that it has been passed on.

 

Key Items

 

  • Tone down Commander abilities.
  • Continue to review and rebalance Commander's, units, and abilities (e.g. Barrage, Defiance, pikes, scorpions, cavalry charge, etc.)
  • Review and rebalance Barbarian faction commanders and abilities
  • Review friendly fire punishement
  • Allow customization of ping and telestration colors
  • Allow players to gift gold/bundles to other players
  • Review matchmaking balance
  • Improve chat functions, including allowing parties to chat and opening separate PM box
  • Allow players to report and/or commend others in-game after a battle ends
  • Limit Commande abilities to the tier of the unit selected

 

Bugs

  • Players suddenly encounter high CPU lag
  • Player received “Fatal Error - Untrusted system file (C:\Windows\System32\scpicli.dll)” when loading the client
  • Points shown in game scoreboard do not match up to points shown in the after battle report when player has wardog units equipped. The points are usually higher in-game, likely because contribution by the wardogs does not count in the after battle report
  • Player was unable to turn off replays, even if that option was selected
  • Player attemped to load the client; after going through EAC start-up, the client doesn’t load and the Play button on the WGC is still orange. Player hits “Play” again and two instances of the client attempt to load
  • Occasionally, client will close during or immediately after a match with no warning or error
  • After pressing the “Play” button, the game loaded to ¼ screen sized window, a black screen in the top left quadrant of the monitor. Player clicked until it went full screen, but it was still black. Player then ALT+Tab to minimize the screen. Game finally loaded but gave the error “database loading problem: a table contains no records.”
  • Graphics issue with fog of war. The vision is often sporadic and patchy, rather than a continuous field of view through the fog of war (see screenshot: http://forum.totalwararena.com/index.php?/topic/2913-fog-of-warfield-of-vision-glitch/)
  • Player was in a party and logged off. The player showed as “Offline” in the party window; however, the player showed as “In Party Frontend” in Friend List
  • “Failed to Connect to Profile Server” error
  • When playing on different computers, the player profile information is not consistent. One computer may say 500 battles played with the second says 200 battles played
  • Player was unable to damage enemy cavalry when attacking
  • The names on the friends list still do not show
  • When 3D render buffer scale is reduced below 1.0, the projectile highlighter will become misaligned from the projectile. The misalignment becomes greater as 3D render buffer scale reduces
  • Continuing potential issue with Windows 10 Fall Creators Update: “bad_module_info cannot open” bug when loading the tutorial
  • Continuing “Matchmaking Failed” and “Arbitration Failed” error while queueing for a battle
  • Players marked as “AFK” by the automated system even though they are actively participating in the battle

 

 

dance210, regarding problems wuth the launcher, I've encountered the "orange button" being lit and consequently launching a second instance, I rapidly discovered that my gaming laptop produces a significant lag before the TW .exe launches and have learned to wait a few seconds.  Since that time, the launcher has never failed to launch the TW.exe if I wait for a few seconds.  In my case, it seems to be a slow drive.

 

Second point, virus protection (or the product I use) blocks the TW.exe from launching.  Doesnt happen with WoT or WoW.  Any internal testing on that?



Ardez #5 Posted 25 December 2017 - 05:09 PM

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View PostLetum_Cruento, on 25 December 2017 - 01:08 AM, said:

 

dance210, regarding problems wuth the launcher, I've encountered the "orange button" being lit and consequently launching a second instance, I rapidly discovered that my gaming laptop produces a significant lag before the TW .exe launches and have learned to wait a few seconds.  Since that time, the launcher has never failed to launch the TW.exe if I wait for a few seconds.  In my case, it seems to be a slow drive.

 

Second point, virus protection (or the product I use) blocks the TW.exe from launching.  Doesnt happen with WoT or WoW.  Any internal testing on that?

 

It is likely prevent EAC, the anti-cheat program, from launching. You would need to reach out to EAC or add an exception to your anti-virus.


DalRiada #6 Posted 25 December 2017 - 07:45 PM

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MM Balance:

Alpis Graia 7 8 8 8 9 7 7 9 9 9 vs 7 7 8 8 9 9 X X 9 X
Salernum    9 9 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 vs X 9 9 9 9 8 8 8 7 7
Rubicon     7 7 7 7 8 9 9 9 X X vs 7 7 8 8 9 8 9 9 7 8
Germania    7 7 7 8 8 9 X X 9 X vs 7 7 7 8 8 8 8 8 9 9



Letum_Cruento #7 Posted 26 December 2017 - 05:33 AM

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Of course, wrote long post on my tablet and just as I was finishing, the tablet rotated and I lost the post.  Since I just don't have it in me to re-write the whole thing again, summary:

 

Thought about the first line in report:

 

Tone down Commander abilities.​

 

This really concerns me. I realize the same report says this list are things that are being considered (except for the bugs, which we all know need to be fixed). Its not fixed in stone.  But felt it was important to get this out before, rather than after a change had been made.

 

A)Toning down the Commander abilities across the board greatly simplifies the strategic and tactical aspect of the game.  Making this change will by nature reduce the affect any commander has on any unit.  This is similar to going from chess to checkers.  TW is a unique experience, the combo of Commanders and units opens up 100s of options.  Toning down the abilities still gives 100s of options, but the more the Commanders are "toned down", the less difference between the options.

 

B)The use of "toning down" does not imply balancing.  It implies an across the board simplification of the game. I've seen this in a significant numberof games and almost without exception, said games became just another game.  What made it special is removed.  WHich leads me to......

 

C) The intro paragraph metions changes based on bugs and player feedback.  Since it is not listed under the bugs section, the implication is that this is being considered because of player feedback.  The players I've played with over the past six months have mentioned parts of the game that were "overpowered", "not realistic", "not plausible", and "unbalanced".  An across the board "toning down" of the game doesn't fall under any of these categories.  However, I have seen NEW players complain of things being "unfair", "hacking", etc.  I'll look at these players profiles and they often have lessthan 100 matches, sometimes less than 20.  They don't understand the game, the matching of Commanders with units, what works and what doesn't.  I fear this is the feedback I fear is getting the attention.   Players that are satisfied  do not as a rule post about their satifaction.  Players who are not satisfied are far more likely to give feedback.

 

D) IMHO, the dev team has done a good job balancing the game.  Some complain that game balance problems don't get fixed quickly enough, but my experience is they never do, as most posters want a patch in 24 hours and that is not how development works unless it is a gamestopping problem crops up. Some significant changes have been made, all with an eye to game balance and realism being the goal.  "Toning down" all Commanders abilities doesn't fall in this category. Its not a bug.

 

E) Some of the significant changes made include (but are not limited to:

  • Changing of Caesar's Offensive and Defensive modifiers.  (Game balance)
  • Balancing dogs so they don't wipe out whole cavalry units with little or no damage.  (Game balance, realism)
  • Changes to charge mechanics, so players cannot get a full strength charge going through friendly units. Instead they get a poor charge result and have to think and find an open flank to get a full charge.  (Game balance, realism)
  • Changes to pikes, such that a full pike unit cannot rotate 180 degrees in a second or less.  15' pikes can't do that in any relaity I'm aware of and it removed the weakness that pikes had to a flank or rear attack.  (Game balance, realism)

 

These are just some of the examples.  I haven't always been pleased with changes, but part of being a tester is seeing how things change and whether that is good or bad. In retrospect, some of the things I didn't like I changed my mind on. I can say now I am 90% satisfied with the play experience and direction of the game. All of these changes bettered the game, provided game balance, kept as close to realism as possible, and kept Total War on track to be a strategic, tactical thinking wargame.  "Toning Down" Commanders does none of these things.  WHat it does do is make the game far easier, with the likely outcome that the blob charge, lack of tactics on the battlefield, and lack of strategy in pairing Commanders with various units is the likely outcome.  WHat was once a challenging game, that took time to master will become more of a twitch game, with a shallow learning curve, resulting in what could be a game standing above the rest falling back to the pack.

 

The fact of the matter is, in general, the easier a game is to master the quicker it is discarded.  ANd the very voices calling for an easier game will move on quickly.  In the meantime, those players who have watched the development of the game are less likely to become invested.  They will have seeen what the game was and are likely to find it simplistic.  These are players that are already invested in the entertainment and challenge of the game and often the same type of player who invest monetarily in the game.  There are a lot of player with more than a thousand battles and some with twenty-five hundred plus.  Your "Immortals", "Heros", and "Champions" are likely to move on to a more challenging game.  And that hits the bottom line.

So, chess or checkers?  Depth or quick satisfaction.  Psychologically speaking, chess and depth are more attractive to people with attention spans and wallets.  Personally, I haven't played anything but Total War since I got into the testing program.  I have a ton of time and money invested in 4-5 other games I haven't touched in six months.  That is the definition of sucess.

So, please keep balancing the game and give some serious thought into game balance and NOT into ease of play.  The positive ease of play, with new group, messaging, equipping, scoreboards, etc. is very welcome by all.  But a game that requires little thought over the long-term (and I know you want long-term players), simplifies the battle experience (I don't have to worry about what Commander is working with those swords, pikes, archers, cavalry, etc.), and leads to a quick feeling of malaise.  Working on Commanders, Units, and tactics with various combinations is a big part of the drawing power of the game.  Take that away, and you don't have to think about retreat, charges, terrain features, etc.  And that is what makes this game special.

So (and this is just IMHO, but backed by 30+ years of gaming and 20+ years of testing, moderating and at times GMing game servers), will it be the greatness that people who heard that there was going to be a large scale Total War, with teams, tech trees, unique Commanders, etc.  Or will it be just another game with Total War in the title.

I mean no disrespect, I am just voicing MY concern.  I want the Total War I heard about and have been playing.  I want greatness, and up til I saw that phrase, I trusted I was going to get it.

So, hope you read this and think about what I've said.  You are the devs. Personally, my vote is for greatness and a unique experience.

Thanks for reading.

 

 

 

 


Edited by Letum_Cruento, 26 December 2017 - 05:37 AM.





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