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Namutree

Engagement Mechanics- Problems and Solutions

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It seems that after a good amount of time playing the beta; some players (including myself) have problems with the engagement mechanic as it is currently implemented. Is there any issues or solutions you guys would like to discuss? 

Edited by Namutree
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"Good thing I don't heal my characters or they'd be really hurt." Is not something I should ever be thinking.

 

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Let's wait for the next beta release, currently too much is unknown whether some things are actually intended or not.

I would be happy if you made this thread again after a week of testing the next build. (if it drops from the first page)

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Let's wait for the next beta release, currently too much is unknown whether some things are actually intended or not.

I would be happy if you made this thread again after a week of testing the next build. (if it drops from the first page)

I'll just bump it up in a week after the new build if it's not on the front page. No need to remake the thread.

Edited by Namutree
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"Good thing I don't heal my characters or they'd be really hurt." Is not something I should ever be thinking.

 

I use blue text when I'm being sarcastic.

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I think it's a good concept. Attacks of opportunity keep players from abusing hit-and-run, which was all too easy to do in the IE games.

 

My main issue is with how the mechanic is explained in the game--it really isn't. This could be jarring to IE veterans who discover in their first fight that retreating their fighter incurred an extra attack against him.

 

Also, it's not made clear what the "engagement limit" is, or what the consequences are for exceeding it.

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Also, it's not made clear what the "engagement limit" is, or what the consequences are for exceeding it.

A lack of clarity is a problem. I think that will be fixed in the future luckily.

 

I have a concern:

 

This mechanic may make it harder to flee a losing battle than in the IE games. In BG when you were losing a fight it was fairly easy to escape; just run away. Thanks to how punishing the disengagement mechanic is, it'll be really much harder to simply run away. This could lead to poe being more difficult in ways some IE veterans may not have anticipated.


"Good thing I don't heal my characters or they'd be really hurt." Is not something I should ever be thinking.

 

I use blue text when I'm being sarcastic.

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This mechanic may make it harder to flee a losing battle than in the IE games. In BG when you were losing a fight it was fairly easy to escape; just run away. Thanks to how punishing the disengagement mechanic is, it'll be really much harder to simply run away.

It could be that the attacks of opportunity are a bit too vicious. Running away should incur a penalty (IMO) but it shouldn't mean instant death in every case. I haven't attempted enough escapes to get a feel whether the damage needs tweaking.

 

As to running away: I'm going to play devil's advocate and suggest that escaping with your life should be harder in a game that gives you the option to avoid combat by sneaking past. IE games didn't really have an avoidance option--at least not with guys in your way--so escaping helped compensate. Engagement means you're committed to the attack, not just dipping your toes in and fleeing if it's too much. It makes sneaking vs. attacking an actual choice.

Edited by PrimeHydra

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I really think that being in engagement should be "stickier" than it currently is. When fighitng enemies, engagement should lokc you within the circle of engagement unless you actively try to go out of engagement. Something like having to double-click instead of single-clicking or having to push a "disengage" button and then moving (or both options, even). Or ctrl/alt-clicking. Something that would notify you that you are actually disnegaging.

 

At the very least, it should be an option.

 

Also, the current mechanic is so buggy and unrecognizable that it's really tough to give much feedback at this point, just like Cubiq has mentioned.

Edited by Hormalakh
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My blog is where I'm keeping a record of all of my suggestions and bug mentions.

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/  UPDATED 9/26/2014

My DXdiag:

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/2014/08/beta-begins-v257.html

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I really think that being in engagement should be "stickier" than it currently is. When fighitng enemies, engagement should lokc you within the circle of engagement unless you actively try to go out of engagement. Something like having to double-click instead of single-clicking or having to push a "disengage" button and then moving (or both options, even). Or ctrl/alt-clicking. Something that would notify you that you are actually disnegaging.

 

At the very least, it should be an option.

 

Also, the current mechanic is so buggy and unrecognizable that it's really tough to give much feedback at this point, just like Cubiq has mentioned.

That's an interesting idea.

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"Good thing I don't heal my characters or they'd be really hurt." Is not something I should ever be thinking.

 

I use blue text when I'm being sarcastic.

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Gyah, I JUST posted in another thread, before I saw this one, heh.

 

I'm with Hormalakh. I really think making sure you manually stay within a dynamic radius on the battlefield shouldn't be the responsibility of the player... with six different party members, potentially. However, it should be easy to banish that restriction, voluntarily, at the cost of an AoO.

 

Also, I think an AoO should be guaranteed to hit. Because, simply jogging past a Fighter shouldn't be easy. And happening to get lucky as your opponent still rolls a miss or graze, even with significantly boosted Accuracy, is easy. I mean, you're either taking on that person about to swing a sword at your whole body, or you aren't. If you opt to ignore him, what's stopping him from hitting you? Is it that hard to hit someone who's simply jogging past you without even focusing on you at all?

 

Finally, I think movement should be slowed while engaged. So that, even if you do decide to take a free hit and jog past, you still don't get to sprint, full-speed, to the enemy's back line, and simply eat some damage as your only cost.

 

As for options for engagement avoidance, I'm not really sure what to do. It seems like it should be easier, for lack of a better word. Not in the sense that the opportunity to avoid engagement should always be readily available. But that actually performing the act of staying out of that circle should be easier. Basically, some kind of "try and avoid engagement circles" AI/command would be nice, as separate from a "just run straight here" command. It's just silly that you could send someone across the battlefield, accidentally set one foot within someone's engagement radius, and be stickied to that person, when the opportunity to get around them happened to be readily available, but the player simply couldn't easily-enough ensure that their character didn't cross a specific line of pixels. *shrug*. I don't think anything should automatically stop you from entering engagement circles or anything.

 

It'd be different if engagement circles were always stationary, like a lot of traps. Then, you could simply look at where they are, and walk around them. But, when they're moving along with your character (because opponents are moving about), it becomes a lot more difficult to simply manually avoid them, shy of constantly pausing and updating your movement command until your character gets around the threat.


Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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unless an opponent actively attacks, engagement should not activate. For multiple engagements, the enemy should have to shift-click (or something to that effect, maybe right click all enemies and last enemy that is right-clicked will be first to be attacked, all other right-clicked opponents should be also engaged when within range).

 

this way you don't have crazy engagements occuring as enemies are running past each other or Lephy's fear of random AoO attacks occuring randomly (if you are running past someone and they haven't actively engaged you, AoOs don't happen.)

 

i disagree with lephys' suggestions that AoO should alsways activate. I like the accuracy malus, but it should be possible to miss with a high enough difference in accy-defense. Also, no slow downs as you have to consider the possibility that enemies will be engaged/disengaged/re-engaged and mulitple slow downs can really put off players from combat.

 

And as for changing the range, if you get caught within range of Engager you should be caught, (if he right-clicked you or attacked you, etc). It should be easy to engage and disengage. If you want to be ranged,


My blog is where I'm keeping a record of all of my suggestions and bug mentions.

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/  UPDATED 9/26/2014

My DXdiag:

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/2014/08/beta-begins-v257.html

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If you want sticky engagement you may as well just use MMO style aggro mechanics. Guess what? The majority of backers don't want that (me included). That is the reason why the "Melee Engagement" system was designed. However in practice I think it's going to be almost as bad as the Neverwinter Nights games.

 

I am going to give the new patch a thorough whirl and then report my conclusions after that, but currently I'm thinking the feature should be cut.

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Actually I would prefer nwn2 system over what we have now. In nwn2 it could miss like any attack, it wasn't instant critical, any class could use tumble and there were feats that gave you bonus AC vs these attacks.

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If you want sticky engagement you may as well just use MMO style aggro mechanics. Guess what? The majority of backers don't want that (me included). That is the reason why the "Melee Engagement" system was designed. However in practice I think it's going to be almost as bad as the Neverwinter Nights games.

 

I am going to give the new patch a thorough whirl and then report my conclusions after that, but currently I'm thinking the feature should be cut.

 

I don't know what MMO aggro mechanics has to do with combatants not being able to move away from engagement radius (unless double-clicking). I don't think you're reading the suggestion carefully. You're talking about what happens during an engagement and I'm talking about how disengagement should work.

 

The point isn't to "aggro" an enemy or whatever. It's to make sure that "cheap shots" with engagement don't occur due to the fast-paced nature of the game. Once a player is engaged by the enemy, they should have to make a conscious effort to want to disengage (to run away or readjust positioning). The enemy can continue to do whatever it wants, but if the enemy is engaged, and wishes to do something other than attack the engaging opponent, then it will have to encur an attack.

 

I'm not saying that engaging an enemy should automatically make them attack you. I'm saying that when you've engaged an enemy (or an enemy has engaged you), that you should be aware of that and allowing for a little stickiness will make this easier. If attack rounds are slow enough, then this shouldn't pose much of a problem because at the very most you'd take one attack before making the decision disengage.

 

MMO style aggro mechanics isn't what this is about; it's about being able to understand where your character is without taking "cheap shots." For actual engagement mechanics, I don't have much of a say right now.

 

TL;DR. You can still disengage with my suggestion. It just takes away from the NWN2 style of getting cheap shotted, amkes it easier to understand. Making disengagement an actual choice as opposed to "oh oops I ran too far away" (the NWN2 effect) and making that choice easy to do (double-click/ctrl-click/etc), avoiding the MMO effect, will go far in making engagement mechanics feel better.

Edited by Hormalakh
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My blog is where I'm keeping a record of all of my suggestions and bug mentions.

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/  UPDATED 9/26/2014

My DXdiag:

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/2014/08/beta-begins-v257.html

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In DnD 3.5e if you wanted to move away from enemy without suffering AoO but didn't have any special way (spells, feats, tumble or some magical ability) there were two options:

1. just move without doing anything. This worked against one enemy, but additional ones that surrounded you would still get their AoO. - this can be implemented in PoE by turning on a universal ability for all classes that lets you move away from one engagement but your recovery turns on for few seconds. You will be able to break engagement from one enemy but you will not be able to do much for the duration of the recovery. 

2. go into full defense mode and move out of area. This would cause everyone around to get AoO but their chance of actually hitting you would be reduced considerably (about 20%). - this can be implemented in PoE similar to #1 but it gives a noticeable Deflection boost while also putting your character into recovery for few seconds. You can more safely move from as many engagements as you want but you will also not be able to do much for the duration of recovery. This option would also reduce your move speed while recovery is in effect. 

Edited by archangel979

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I have no clue why a lack of "sticky" mechanics is a bad thing. Any one care to explain? I would say that D&D like double move is a valid and non intrusive way of solving things. AoO's when you use items/potions in the mid of battle make more sense and thus encourage more attentive play.


"The essence of balance is detachment. To embrace a cause, to grow fond or spiteful, is to lose one's balance, after which, no action can be trusted. Our burden is not for the dependent of spirit."

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TL;DR. You can still disengage with my suggestion. It just takes away from the NWN2 style of getting cheap shotted, amkes it easier to understand. Making disengagement an actual choice as opposed to "oh oops I ran too far away" (the NWN2 effect) and making that choice easy to do (double-click/ctrl-click/etc), avoiding the MMO effect, will go far in making engagement mechanics feel better.

What you have described is how Engagement should work as per the the Melee Engagement Update 44 post, and Josh Sawyer's posts on how it should work. Currently it does not work how it is described in the Update or in Josh's posts, there are issues with the logic and there are multiple bugs with it.

 

However I still do not think that is good enough, as it will still make combat into a stand still and attack fest, and no tactical re-positioning will occur.

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Who cares what D&D says, or what happens in a turn-based game. This is a RTwP game.

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Who cares what D&D says, or what happens in a turn-based game. This is a RTwP game.

Read post above dude.


"The essence of balance is detachment. To embrace a cause, to grow fond or spiteful, is to lose one's balance, after which, no action can be trusted. Our burden is not for the dependent of spirit."

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In DnD 3.5e if you wanted to move away from enemy without suffering AoO but didn't have any special way (spells, feats, tumble or some magical ability) there were two options:

1. just move without doing anything. This worked against one enemy, but additional ones that surrounded you would still get their AoO. - this can be implemented in PoE by turning on a universal ability for all classes that lets you move away from one engagement but your recovery turns on for few seconds. You will be able to break engagement from one enemy but you will not be able to do much for the duration of the recovery. 

2. go into full defense mode and move out of area. This would cause everyone around to get AoO but their chance of actually hitting you would be reduced considerably (about 20%). - this can be implemented in PoE similar to #1 but it gives a noticeable Deflection boost while also putting your character into recovery for few seconds. You can more safely move from as many engagements as you want but you will also not be able to do much for the duration of recovery. This option would also reduce your move speed while recovery is in effect.

Soo what stops the enemy from just re-engaging you when you are recovering?

 

http://www.dandwiki....:Movement_Speed

 

If you use two move actions in a round (sometimes called a “double move” action),

 

Sounds like you would need to implement a completely new turn based system for this to work, not just a round system like IE games have.

I don't think there's much chance of that. Late in development and all that.

Edited by Cubiq

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In DnD 3.5e if you wanted to move away from enemy without suffering AoO but didn't have any special way (spells, feats, tumble or some magical ability) there were two options:

1. just move without doing anything. This worked against one enemy, but additional ones that surrounded you would still get their AoO. - this can be implemented in PoE by turning on a universal ability for all classes that lets you move away from one engagement but your recovery turns on for few seconds. You will be able to break engagement from one enemy but you will not be able to do much for the duration of the recovery. 

2. go into full defense mode and move out of area. This would cause everyone around to get AoO but their chance of actually hitting you would be reduced considerably (about 20%). - this can be implemented in PoE similar to #1 but it gives a noticeable Deflection boost while also putting your character into recovery for few seconds. You can more safely move from as many engagements as you want but you will also not be able to do much for the duration of recovery. This option would also reduce your move speed while recovery is in effect.

Soo what stops the enemy from just re-engaging you when you are recovering?

 

What prevents them now? Movespeed and allies. If you are alone and fighting enemies you don't get anything from retreating anyways unless you are much, much faster. Edited by archangel979

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What prevents them now? Movespeed and allies.

Huh? You mean in PoE? Enemy's movement speed doesn't prevent them from re-engaging you now.

And who's allies, enemies or yours?

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In DnD 3.5e if you wanted to move away from enemy without suffering AoO but didn't have any special way (spells, feats, tumble or some magical ability) there were two options:

1. just move without doing anything. This worked against one enemy, but additional ones that surrounded you would still get their AoO. - this can be implemented in PoE by turning on a universal ability for all classes that lets you move away from one engagement but your recovery turns on for few seconds. You will be able to break engagement from one enemy but you will not be able to do much for the duration of the recovery. 

2. go into full defense mode and move out of area. This would cause everyone around to get AoO but their chance of actually hitting you would be reduced considerably (about 20%). - this can be implemented in PoE similar to #1 but it gives a noticeable Deflection boost while also putting your character into recovery for few seconds. You can more safely move from as many engagements as you want but you will also not be able to do much for the duration of recovery. This option would also reduce your move speed while recovery is in effect.

Soo what stops the enemy from just re-engaging you when you are recovering?

 

http://www.dandwiki....:Movement_Speed

 

If you use two move actions in a round (sometimes called a “double move” action),

 

Sounds like you would need to implement a completely new turn based system for this to work, not just a round system like IE games have.

I don't think there's much chance of that. Late in development and all that.

 

 

*sigh*

 

Just to clarify: I only posted that to show what a double move is.

 

The real point was the earlier one that "sticky" mechanics does not contribute to the game. I actually asked why is it there in the first place. I wonder if someone could explain that.


"The essence of balance is detachment. To embrace a cause, to grow fond or spiteful, is to lose one's balance, after which, no action can be trusted. Our burden is not for the dependent of spirit."

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I don't understand your question:

 

Engagement was a mechanic in response solely to ranged attacks being OP. It's a poor hack-job answer to that, but as it stands on its own, I like engagement mechanics because if implemented correctly, it can really make for an interesting mechanic to play with.

 

As for being "sticky" as I described it, it was because getting free hits while two combatants cross each other to get to the other side of the road is a terrible and bug-ridden implementation of the core idea. Who gets to decide who gets the AoO attack? How is the player supposed to (in a RTWP game) react fast enough to make informed attentive decisions and commands when things are flying past him? Especially when 6 different characters are fighting from 1-20 different moving targets on a board? Let's not talk about the obstructive FX that clutter up that whole battle and bugs that don't even let us see how it's *actually supposed* to work...

 

now i'm rambling.

Edited by Hormalakh

My blog is where I'm keeping a record of all of my suggestions and bug mentions.

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/  UPDATED 9/26/2014

My DXdiag:

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/2014/08/beta-begins-v257.html

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