Home > Uncategorized > Hardcore vs. Casual

Hardcore vs. Casual

The time has come for the post about the new armor sets and the growing divide between what gamers would call ‘hardcore’ and ‘casual’ players. By my dictatorial-will we shall establish the definition of a casual player as someone who logs in a few hours a day, say 1-4 hours, maybe more, maybe less; hardcore players would be those who can clock in 8+ hours, often times complaining about how tired they are because they’ve been up for ‘x’ hours without food or drink. Casual players are the guys who get up and go eat, drink, smoke, pee, play with their dog once an hour because its draining to be at the computer – the guys for who a 2minute AFK isn’t enough and got hurt by the new measure; hardcore players consume only oxygen and pixels and their afks last seconds not minutes.

Ok so maybe that’s exaggerating, but the point is casual players log in for a few scenarios a day and don’t get hundreds of thousands of renown daily. I know people who were below RR80 before the 1.4 patch, and despite the increased renown are still below RR80. And then there are the people who are now RR90-100. Maybe without the new gear this wouldn’t be such a damning divide, but there is new gear, and the divide is growing. While the match-making system was intended to divide the higher renown ranks from the lower renown ranks, it apparently isn’t doing that or simply put there aren’t enough people of sufficiently high a rank on one realm to compete with those of the other realm.

Before the patch there was already a massive gear gap between those in full sov with their RR80 weapons and the new guys just hitting T4, the rank 32s decked out in full devastator ready to take on the world. Sure the bracket for T3 was increased to include all ranks 26-39, but the measure did little to alleviate the gap in T4. Lets assume that before someone hit T4 at about RR30 and was fighting RR80s, that’s 50 renown ranks difference; and lets assume that now someone hits T4 at about RR40 and will potentially be fighting RR100s, that’s 60 renown ranks which get exponentially stronger beyond RR70. The gap is extreme, and to compound the issue, in order to stay competitive you essentially HAVE to buy the ‘optional’ Progression Pack so your renown progresses past 80 (and so your renown grows faster to keep pace with other’s who have the pack) because lets face it – an RR80 doesn’t stand up well against an RR100. What it boils down to is that there is so very little incentive to roll alts or for new players to enter T4 because they are going to get steam-rolled for months before they can be on par with the big boys – matchmaking only works in scenarios, it doesn’t work in RvR lakes. Months before 1.4 came out when I started this blog I wrote about this, and now it is all coming to fruition.

Already servers are starting to see increasing numbers of hardcore players hitting RR90, some nearing the RR100 point, and these bands of high rank players mainly got there by taking advantage of AAO and ganking in RvR lakes, not by doing scenarios. And who are they ganking? Obviously other players, but one can assume that since their renown has sky-rocketed so much they are ganking either weaker players or out-numbered players – irregardless the fight is not a fair one, hence the term gank. Let me put it this way, I killed a rank 32 player when I had 400% AAO and I got some stupid figure like 6k renown for them. 6k renown for a rank 32? Something is not right. I never enjoy killing  players who are not even rank 40 and most of the time just /wave them and move on (unless they go balls-out and try to kill me) but these players still come to T4 because T3 is largely inactive on my server,and unfortunately, they are still incredibly lucrative victims to AAO farmers. And so these RR80s began to AAO farm by ganking lowbees who they already vastly outgeared and have launched themselves into Doomflayer gear, and now they are nay unkillable.

Simply put the new armor sets are rewarding the hardcore players to a degree that is hurting the game far more than it is benefiting it. New players don’t want to come to T4. Why? Because they can’t compete. Many old players who resubbed for 1.4 (who had quit back when they were in their low RRs) have left once again because they can’t compete. Now I know some hardcore nut is going to want to tell me to ‘stfu n00b. ltp’ but its not an argument about skill. I’m still trying to compete and in most cases I think I do well, but going up against a Doomflayer-clad enemy tends to reap poor results. Already defensive Doomflayer MDPS have more survivability than tanks in pre-Doomflayer gear AND they still somehow have enough dps to kill in seconds – so while the TTK for them has gone way up, the TTK for their victims is ridiculously low. Something isn’t right. I dread to think of what will happen when these hardcore players get Warpforged gear and I’m still lah-di-dah-ing in my sovereign.

So while the numbers of RR90+s grows, the number of casual players declines. Already servers are beginning to lose casual players who are feeling that they no longer have a place in this game. And this isn’t including the people who left the game because the skaven skins were not what they thought they’d be or because they’re tired of playing in the same zones for two years. No, now the dedicated players who loved WAR despite its bumps are leaving because its not a game that a casual player can log into and compete. This isn’t to say that all casual players are leaving, but some are, and considering the population of the game any loss should be evaluated and the developers should ask themselves ‘Why did they leave?’ and ‘What could we do to get them to come back?’. The casual players with sufficient sense of humor and determination chug on. Sure there are 6 of you in Doomflayer and and you are spawn camping me and my comrades, but I’ve got scores of tentacle pies.

Whats to be done? Well as with all problems, Hypothetical War has solutions, solutions which only need catch the eye of Mythic and get implemented.

  • Step one: Look at the sets and their stats; consider how they pair up with players wearing anything from Devastator to Doomflayer. Let me help you with this – they don’t. These sets are what we call ‘stupid-OP’ and when you put them on classes which we shall call ‘stupid-OP’… say a DoK or a BW, then you’ve got a lot of ‘stupid-OP’ going on, like ‘extra-stupid-OP’ or ‘OOP’. Either scale the sets down (with matching scenario weapons) or help lower sets.
  • Step two: While I am a kind soul who lets R32s live and struggle up the mountain of renown, others are not. You can’t say ‘they should be in T3’ when that tier is perhaps dead and they want to play with other people. These players should not be victims of AAO farmers. If you want new players to keep coming to T4 you’ve got to give them a fighting chance. AAO-gankers will always exist because it is the most lucrative form of renown farming and while you may not be able to eliminate them without scrapping the AAO system (which is a good system in my opinion) you can eliminate the lucrative factor of killing a sub R40. Here’s a solution – ‘You have ganked a R35 magus in 400% AAO, you get 1 renown asswipe, and you R35 magus who was ganked by a RR93 witch hunter do not have a wounds debuff, carry on weary soul. Harsh days are ahead, but we won’t punish you for being weak.’
  • Step three: Lets face it, match-making doesn’t exist in RvR. People in Doomflayer and Warpforged will still come out and fight against guys in Devastator, Redeye, and Mayhem gear, and they will think they are the nicest smelling shit on the server because they killed 6 R32s and didn’t go below 90% health. I don’t know how many times I’ve said it, but I’ll say it again – T5 needs to exist. You can omit steps 1 and 2 simply if you institute a Tier 5. I thought a T5 should have existed before RR100, and now more than ever it NEEDS to exist. Not only do old players want new places to fight in, but new players don’t want to get steam-rolled by old players. By adding a new tier you not only add new places for old players to fight in and thus lure back old players who have left, BUT you also give the casual new players a chance to survive and enjoy the game in Tier 4 while they progress through the renown ranks until they have reached a state where they have a greater fighting chance against the high-end renown ranked players.

What this all converges on is one message – there needs to be a divide in T4, it is simply too big of a renown bracket for the low end to be competitive.

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Syrioq
    January 17, 2011 at 3:16 PM

    Two big issues imo:
    1. The carrot for higher RR is always better gear. Make the carrot more choices, not just ‘win button’ gear. I like the expansion of the realm abilities, but bring back the tactics, or some more abilities like Last Stand or Hardy Concession that actually have a downside. Let the carrot be about unlocking more choices for play, not just obliterating anyone who doesn’t have 50 days of playtime on their character.

    2. SC weapons are great, but what about people who don’t do SCs, or servers where they don’t pop? I have used Desert Storm weapons (the blue lvl 33 from lotd) on alts in to the low 50’s. If you’re relatively casual, you usually log in, do some rvr, maybe a few SCs, but rarely enough to keep up with the SC weapon costs (even the reduced ones). They added rvr drops for weapons/armor above RR80, how about some love for 40-80? Even a green RR50 weapon is going to be better than the crap we have if we don’t/can’t do SCs.

  2. January 17, 2011 at 3:37 PM

    6k for killing a rank 32?

    That’s nothing, on my WH yesterday I got 18k expn 8k renown 800 inf for killing a rank 16.

    400% aao

    • January 17, 2011 at 4:10 PM

      Its a double exp/renown weekend 😉

  3. January 18, 2011 at 6:14 AM

    You cannot imagine how thoroughly I agree with you on all levels! You’ve expressed my exact sentiments, and no doubt those of many more players. Cheers for your efforts!:)

    Here’s hoping Mythic actually listen 😉

  4. January 18, 2011 at 3:05 PM

    well they had him on the last blogger roll call.

    So…. Cookies anyone?

  5. Dilek
    January 19, 2011 at 3:01 PM

    I have cookies but I am losing hope. Even the devoted and long term player base, people who have stuck it out for 2 years non-stop, are starting to sound despondent.

  6. Schmoptimus Prime
    January 20, 2011 at 11:15 AM

    All so very true. It used to be that I couldn’t wait to get off work and log in. Nowadays I am wondering if I will log on at all. Now as an average slightly more than casual player the grind itself seems beyond ridiculous to me. I completely feel that since the new patch things have become duller in rvr and the gap insane and impossible to deal with. Btw I want to know how a WE gets 60% crit? I digress…..sigh. I might log on tonight or I might go play ps3.

  7. Schmoptimus Prime
    January 20, 2011 at 11:16 AM

    I really do hope the folks at Mythic are reading this stuff.

  8. appipapi
    January 25, 2011 at 11:53 AM

    so, you point out a situation were one solo unexperiented, ungeared low rr players meats 2 high rr experiented, geared players connected via voicechat, what do you think should happen?
    the problem is not that aao is granting a hell lot rps, the problem is that the low rr player can neither escape if he sees it coming nor can he realy stay to his group(aao 400% means there are a hell lot[prolly high rr] players of his side in the same rvr lake), both is due to the stupid mount system, leveling(reknown or guild) should never make you faster, what the heck were they thinking?
    make only 1 mountspeed and if you realy need progress via mounts let them dismount less likly on hit.

    never seen that the scenario queing worked any better now, could someone copy the patch notes for me saying they made a matching system instead of “first come first served”?

    what is happen if they realy make t5?
    well the same fucking thing it just happends in t5 instead of t4, there is no difference if you aint learned in t1 to t3 to not run solo against many you wont learn in t4 so you got to get farmed in t5, ok you realy want a new tier every week?

    i had a hell lot of fun with my rr 4x engi, cause its realy ONLY the gear thats missing, i already know whats going on from my other chars, the problem is in the community
    they should encourage low rr, starting players to get better to learn fast,
    as an rr 4x engi i am realy having fun due to im using almost any style if it fits the situation, am assisting guys that healdebuff, i know when to run backwards, i know how to style while i move, the problem is the huge gap in experience, i dont talk about skill cause skill and experience are way different, people who talk about skill dont like to explain how to play cause they can call there surplus in experience “skill”

    making scenarios realy balanced would meanwhile soften the problem a little, thus anyone who realy dislikes loosing in rvr can go sc

    even so i currently play a r 4x engi WITHOUT the optional rvr pack i think rvr lakes should realy stay the wild west, if you go out in the wild west and you are a girl without a gun, you maybe get raped, if you go out in the wild west and you are the meanest cunning asshole gunhero the world ever seen, you prolly kill someone but even so you are realy mean you maybe encounter a horde of halfway mean gunman and get killed, well if you dont like the wild west dont go to the rvr lakes.

    solutions:
    – only 1 mount speed or removing mounts completly
    – remove defensive dps sets(or nerf them hard[like 40 strength MINUS on each setpiece would be nice]), they suck, one point i totally agree with hypothetical war
    – balance scenarios to a point where scenarios are interesting for starting players as much as for rr 80+

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