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View Full Version : The Power Kill Meta-game



Tekrunner
04-23-2014, 02:27 AM
The way that kill points are awarded currently appears to work as follows:

If you have shot at the enemy the second that it dies, and you meet at least one condition for a "special kill" (melee, nano effect, power, defense, rescue) or you land the kill shot, then you get a large base number of points, with a bonus depending on how many special kill conditions you meet.
In any other case, you get an Assist and a much, much lower number of points.


I have two main issues with this system. First, the window of time in which you have to damage the enemy to get kill points is very short. I believe Trick said that window was a few seconds long, but it is definitely shorter, probably around 1 second or so. This has two very annoying consequences: 1) if you reach the end of your magazine right as the enemy you're fighting dies, then you're basically screwed, no matter how fast you can reload, and 2) the server appears to have trouble taking all hits into account, which means that it often doesn't recognize that you did, in fact, shoot the enemy right as it was dying.

This is my number 1 frustration with the game right now: yesterday I fought 4 major Arkfall bosses and got 3 assists, even though I did everything right (EGO power active and shooting at the boss when it died). Given the huge difference in points between an assist and a kill (for a Monolith assists are around 20 - 30k, whereas a power kill is 120 - 130k), it really feels like the game robbed me of my points. I'm not seeing a lot of other people complaining about this, so this may be linked to the fact that since DLC 5 release we have a fairly high player population on PC EU, but only 2 or 3 shards to support it, and therefore experience lag at highly crowded major events.

My second issue is that this system is just too meta-gamey. The only special kill condition you can control is power kills. But it doesn't make any sense within the game's context to save your EGO power activation until the last few seconds before a large enemy dies, yet it is the optimal strategy. Doing this is purely a meta-game trick that is kind of annoying, doesn't add anything to the game, and yet is required to enjoy full rewards from boss fights.

I have two suggestions that should be reasonably easy to implement, and would make things less frustrating:

Increase the window in which you can hit an enemy before death to get a kill to something like 4 seconds. This would make it less punishing if you're reaching the end of your magazine at the wrong moment (giving you time to reload or switch weapons), and would probably increase the chance of the server "seeing" at least one of your hits during that longer window.
Make it so that if you qualify for a kill, but do not meet any special kill conditions, you do not get an assist but simply a kill, which grants a high number of points, without any special kill bonus. While saving and activating EGO powers at the right moment would still be optimal, it would have a much lower impact and would make the associated meta-game less important.

Fuzzy
04-23-2014, 05:09 AM
I agree with you here, Tek.

The numbers vary greatly from an Assist to a Powerkill. Even the difference between a Powerkill and a Nano-Effect kill is huge.

It's the same frustration all over again as it was with Hulkers back before the Scoring system was introduced.
Now, you still get points from killing the hulker but the numbers vary from 8k (few people) to 18k (much people). Sometimes if you're "lucky" and get a Rescue Kill, you get 23k. Assists still award you lot of points and it isn't that dissatisfying when you don't get the kill (Well, at the moment, people want to kill Hulkers at all because it is nearly impossible^^).

What angers me is that you can be there from the beginning of an Arkfall and due to Server lag or an empty magazine or an unpredictable move by the endboss get robbed from your points which results in you being last on the score board.
The other way around, you can get in at the last second of an Arkfall, shoot the endboss, be lucky enough to get the kill and get first.

That doesn't seem fair, does it?

After DLC 5 hit, I took part in a few successful WM runs. It was hard, too hard even, because of scaling issues still happening. Well, anyway, we defeated him and everyone in the room got a kill. At least that's what I heard from my clanies. Some were lying dead on the ground or were upstairs when he died and still got the points for that.
The numbers varied. I don't know how they are given but a system like this would be much appreciated for endbosses too.

Hopeisdead
04-23-2014, 05:12 AM
But, but i no longer can finish first if i just port to last stage of major arkfall and just needle out the boss at the end while everyone took care of the first 99 percent of the boss health.

But i agree.

Combo Breaker
04-23-2014, 05:18 AM
This.

120 kills at an Arkfall.

Came in 4th behind 1,3,and 6 kills.

Seems like it's working perfectly.

Olaf
04-23-2014, 05:34 AM
This.

120 kills at an Arkfall.

Came in 4th behind 1,3,and 6 kills.

Seems like it's working perfectly.

This needs to be addressed TrickDempsey, kills and damage numbers should definitely play a part in the users end score. Tired of working my *** off doing high damage and high kills and coming in the middle of the tables, when people just milk the hell out of the points by turning up, activating overcharge and getting power kills *cough* kenn farm hulker *cough*, teamwork points galore, and they finish top with 3 - 4 kills??? Makes absolutely no sense, dont even get me started on those shoot and scooters who "tag" contracts and run while you do all the hard work and they still get the same rewards, minus a key or two? lol..... Trick pls fine tune this scoring system as its currently a joke.

Nightmare Walkin
04-23-2014, 06:45 AM
I was wondering why I showed up for a hellion for five seconds and received a total score of 105,000 and the same thing an hour later with the progenitor. This morning I got 70k+ and a dc at a dm arkfall. Then I caught another one at the very end and got first place with182k within seconds and got a ridiculous stingray. Now I know why.

Iceberg
04-23-2014, 06:51 AM
I agree, something is off and needs tweaked. Showed up late to a scrapper arkfall and used my wolfhound and managed a power kill shot and got first place on the boss.

drackiller
04-23-2014, 07:04 AM
But, but i no longer can finish first if i just port to last stage of major arkfall and just needle out the boss at the end while everyone took care of the first 99 percent of the boss health.

But i agree.
Not quite exact, i arrived at the Boss stage and i did this only :

http://i750.photobucket.com/albums/xx142/ToniCareca/DSCN01151_zps4fe54c15.jpg (http://s750.photobucket.com/user/ToniCareca/media/DSCN01151_zps4fe54c15.jpg.html)

Very balanced indeed.

SirServed
04-23-2014, 07:04 AM
We almost killed WM last night in a full pug, I was surprised. More to the point, I have an issue with the scoring system. On the loss, I topped the score with 129k points while the lowest score was 112k. The people that weren't playing well enough didn't feel that way due to being mislead by the scoring system. As a result they will continue to use subpar equipment using the argument that they scored over 100k points as proof that they did well. There should still be a display of the amount of damage players did during an event so that they understand where they actually are in terms of performance. A loss is still a loss.

Iceberg
04-23-2014, 07:07 AM
We almost killed WM last night in a full pug, I was surprised. More to the point, I have an issue with the scoring system. On the loss, I topped the score with 129k points while the lowest score was 112k. The people that weren't playing well enough didn't feel that way due to being mislead by the scoring system. As a result they will continue to use subpar equipment using the argument that they scored over 100k points as proof that they did well. There should still be a display of the amount of damage players did during an event so that they understand where they actually are in terms of performance. A loss is still a loss.

I agree, having a dps meter showing who is contributing will help with figuring out if your gear setup is right or needs tweaking. Before the update if you scored 1 million damage or better you would know that you were doing good.

Fuzzle
04-23-2014, 07:32 AM
I'm not seeing a lot of other people complaining about this, so this may be linked to the fact that since DLC 5 release we have a fairly high player population on PC EU, but only 2 or 3 shards to support it, and therefore experience lag at highly crowded major events.

I'm on PC-NA and I'm pretty sure I rage to Fuzzy about this every single day XD I just hadn't bothered to post it on the forums.

The lack of complaining is probably the lack of understanding the system. I've had so many times where I was shooting for the last 10+ seconds of a kill non-stop and got an assist, and it makes me mad every single time. I'm not convinced that the thing they fixed with the servers not recognizing high damages is entirely fixed.

I've also had times where I had to reload and got an assist. I was less mad at that because I attribute that to my personal failings of the meta and not using an appropriately large clip etc. That window time does seem to be entirely too short though, I'd be surprised if it's even an entire second.

Hopeisdead
04-23-2014, 08:12 AM
Not quite exact, i arrived at the Boss stage and i did this only :

Very balanced indeed.

That was my point. It was an reaction if they actually "fix" it.

Manstan
04-23-2014, 10:44 AM
I have learned it is better for scoring to do as much damage as possible to as many enemies a you can while running through, then actually staying around to kill an enemy. I can get a much higher score by standing on a roof and spraying bullets everywhere, then I can down on the ground killing enemies one by one.

Which seems to be the new strategy.

Olaf
04-23-2014, 10:46 AM
I have learned it is better for scoring to do as much damage as possible to as many enemies a you can while running through, then actually staying around to kill an enemy. I can get a much higher score by standing on a roof and spraying bullets everywhere, then I can down on the ground killing enemies one by one.

Which seems to be the new strategy.

which is another big thing that needs to be addressed along with the scaling. kills and damage numbers should play a part in the users end score without a doubt. cant help but laugh seeing guys with 300k damage with 4 kills.

PTR47
04-23-2014, 10:50 AM
1 second to register a kill is WAY too generous. I'm currently feeling the number is closer to 10 or 20 ms -- on PS3, anyways. I am trying to get the last shots in with a Pulser, and get assist quite often. So the space between the shot and the kill is considerably shorter that the space between two bullets from a Pulser.

Olaf
04-23-2014, 10:52 AM
1 second to register a kill is WAY too generous. I'm currently feeling the number is closer to 10 or 20 ms -- on PS3, anyways. I am trying to get the last shots in with a Pulser, and get assist quite often. So the space between the shot and the kill is considerably shorter that the space between two bullets from a Pulser.

try using a tachmag if you havent already?

maverick07
04-23-2014, 04:08 PM
I managed to get credit for a power kill on a monolith yesterday using a VBI semi auto sniper. But there has been times where I haven't got the credit with shooting something like a SAW or even an SMG with a faster fire rate. Maybe the damage your are dealing as it dies is factored in somehow. If you are dealing a lot more burst DMG when it dies you are more likely to get credit for it?

Tekrunner
04-23-2014, 11:14 PM
I managed to get credit for a power kill on a monolith yesterday using a VBI semi auto sniper. But there has been times where I haven't got the credit with shooting something like a SAW or even an SMG with a faster fire rate. Maybe the damage your are dealing as it dies is factored in somehow. If you are dealing a lot more burst DMG when it dies you are more likely to get credit for it?

I'm fairly convinced that the game not granting power kills is just a matter of lag and / or the server not taking damage from all players into account correctly or not in the right order. A couple observations that are consistent with this:

I sometimes get power kills even though my clip has just run out. In such a case, I'm probably right at the edge of the kill window and only have 1 or 2 bullets and not much damage inside it.
I never have any problem with this when there are few people around: for example, I never get robbed of power kills against the Explosions 101 Hulkers, and the kill window seems significantly more forgiving there.


Back before DLC 5, I already had a distinct impression that getting power kills instead of assists on Madera siege hulkers was less random the fewer people there were in the siege.

Another possibility that would match my experience is that the game can only assign a limited number of kills, with everyone else getting assists. If that is what is happening, we're pretty much back to pre-DLC 4, where getting kill bonuses was mostly just random luck.

In any case, please fix this! Every single day I get frustrated by this.

Fuzzle
04-24-2014, 06:27 AM
Hopefully the hotfix 1.504 will address this.

From the patch notes:


The calculations for killing blows are now more forgiving so that players who damage enemies and appear to get the killing blow will more reliably receive credit for doing so.

Manstan
04-24-2014, 06:40 AM
Last night I was at a siege, just running around like a fool and blasting ammo everywhere. By the end of it I was ranked 2nd with 2 kills over 3rd with 26. I'd have probably been first if I hadn't have went down once.

Tekrunner
04-24-2014, 07:07 AM
Hopefully the hotfix 1.504 will address this.

From the patch notes:

It's a little difficult to know whether that fix is about kills for points or for pursuits or both.
If it's about kills for points, the way it is phrased makes me think that right now the system is not using a time but a damage window. If you deal any of the last x damage before the enemy dies, then you're eligible to a kill bonus. That could explain what we're seeing as well.

Fuzzle
04-24-2014, 07:20 AM
It's a little difficult to know whether that fix is about kills for points or for pursuits or both.
If it's about kills for points, the way it is phrased makes me think that right now the system is not using a time but a damage window. If you deal any of the last x damage before the enemy dies, then you're eligible to a kill bonus. That could explain what we're seeing as well.

Just as extra info, I've also noticed several times when killing a boss that the "Assist" score points pop up, but my score itself reflects actually getting the kill points. Kind of an odd discrepancy.

Tekrunner
04-24-2014, 10:58 PM
So, I was a happy while 1.504 was up, because it looked a lot like Trion did exactly what I suggested, with a larger kill window (about 2 seconds) and kill shots instead of assists if you don't meet any special kill condition. I only had time for one arkfall boss (monolith) where I got a giant 160k power kill. But I also tested this on a bunch of siege Viscerae (yay for broken threat levels, made this easier, heh), stopping to shoot for varying amounts of time before their death.

Let's hope this fix is still here when 1.504 is brought back!