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Massive update is coming

May 3, 2013
1,141 Views

Massive updates that should go live soon, possibly as early as of 9AM EST tomorrow. Some of the changes were in response to your feedback over the last couple weeks here on the forums, on twitter, facebook, etc.:

– Dual weapon loadout will be propegated to all playlists with the exception of FFA.
– Stim grenades will be removed from all playlists with the exception of FFA.
– Torquebow charge time reduced back to Gears 3 Active levels (from 2 seconds down to 1.5 seconds).
– Prize boxes updated in the next TU to deliver all content before doling out XP (instead of assigning randomly).

We also went through the community feedback list and looked at everything we could. Here’s a rehash of our response from tonight’s live stream event:

I. Maps / Content 

A. Only 4 traditional multiplayer maps
Map counts increased significantly with current and future DLC. Everyone has had great feedback on what they’d like to see in the future, and we’re still working on getting you guys new content. Not sure that we’d be able to pull over a massive content dump from Gears 3, but we’re definitely working on incremental changes that will get you guys what you want. More DLC is coming, stay tuned!

B. Maps are not symmetrical
DLC maps are either symmetrical or much more symmetrical than release maps. Think layouts that are “more Haven, less Gondola”.

C. Maps are too big
Future DLC map designs are smaller and/or flow better so that combat is less segregated. We’re also setting up hard swaps that focus the action along the midline for Execution.

D. Updates are only “Server side”
We have made an effort to get changes up and tested as early as possible so that we can include them in the required title updates. This will ensure that a good number of the changes are actually present in a LAN setting. We’re also posting change notes and trying to be proactive with communication before changes are implemented.

E. No Locusts in standard versus multiplayer
This cannot be changed at this point. We can, however, make some changes to improve sound and visual recognition between teams. More on that to follow.

II. Melee

A. Reverse 2 Piece possible
We’ve adjusted melee pretty significantly to address these issues. If melee is in the game, you will always be able to shoot someone, and then finish them with a hit. We’ve adjusted delays a bit to help prevent this tactic from being abused, and adjusting it too much further will create the unnatural delays and obstructions to gameplay that we have previously removed in response to your feedback on this very topic.

B. Speed
See above.

C. Range
We have not seen a range difference, and the code has not changed in that regard. There is a chance that latency is affecting this in some circumstances, and it will require more investigation.

III. Matchmaking / Ranked (Incentive)

A. Too many playlists
We’re still working on solutions to this problem, but it is a highly complicated beast (of our own making, to be sure).

B. Ranked vs. Quick match Experience earned
Ranked XP will be increased. We’re working on some other incentives to draw people into Ranked as well (more “competitive-style settings”, for example).

C. Little incentive to play ranked
Judgment does indeed use skill-based ranking as part of its matchmaking algorithm. In point of fact, it essentially IS the Halo matchmaking system as that was the standard put forth by Microsoft. The main difference is that we do it under the hood. This does mean that we don’t have a ranked league-style system, and adding that at this point would unfortunately be out of scope for Judgment. We’re working on other Ranked incentives, however, that don’t require a full redesign of our matchmaking, UI, and infrastructure.

IV. Weapon Balancing (Spawn / Power)

A. Gnasher
We’re working on a fix to allow players the option to toggle their on-screen reticule. The close range “inconsistency” people report is actually an intentional fix that favors the player to ensure they get a proper kill when the barrel of the gun is touching another player’s cylinder. An ammo count change is highly contentious in public forums, and we feel pretty strongly that the current ammo levels actually favor Judgment’s weapon balance. The best option at this point is to increase ammo to 16 and try it in the Test Server.

B. Lancer
A change to the Lancer may indeed favor competitive players who intend on using it in a support capacity. However, the larger majority of the community does not appear to agree that it needs updating. It is currently performing in its intended role across all gametypes, and changing it could create a cascading effect that requires a rebalance of all starting weapons.

Changing to a two-weapon loadout is unlikely to create a huge imbalance in the weapons. The reality of the game stats is that within a few seconds of spawning, you’re either dead, or you have a secondary weapon anyway, so pulling that back to spawn doesn’t significantly move the needle in terms of game balance.

That said, the best option is to make your suggested changes in the Test Server, along with the Gnasher changes, and see how it plays out. We’ll do that ASAP. We’ll start with the clip size reduction and make further updates if necessary.

C. Booshka
Agreed. Clip size and starting ammo being reduced.

D. Boomshot
Agreed. Starting ammo being reduced.

V. Grenade Balancing

A. Ink Grenade
Internal QA is looking into the reported issues. More info to follow.

B. Stim Grenade
Stim grenade being removed from loadout and moved to a pickup in some playlists.

C. Ammo boxes
We’ll try pulling grenades out of ammo boxes in the Test Server, and propagate globally if there is a good response.

VI. Audio (In-Game)

A. Sound isn’t accurately location based
We can’t realistically change our sound engine at this point, but we can (and will) significantly reduce your (and your team’s) footstep volume. If you hear someone, that’ll pretty much guarantee that they are an enemy. We could also reduce the radius of the footstep sound a bit to make it less apparent when they’re above/below you, but that would require a Title Update to implement, and another to change back if the change isn’t well received. Probably too risky at this point.

VII. Glitches

A. Movement
Not getting into cover is due to a series of complicated factors that are made more apparent by Judgment’s increase in game speed and player density. We’ll look into it, but it may not be fixable.

B. Characters
Kim’s hitbox already fixed in the upcoming TU.

Boomshield already adjusted on female characters in the upcoming TU.

I’m not 100% clear on the characters failing to show visual recognition on successive shots, but if I had to guess, I’d say that is by design to prevent them from spamming the same animation over and over while taking damage. As long as the other visual feedback is registering (blood, etc.) then I don’t see this as a major problem. Will need to investigate further.

C. In Game
If players can join a private game, then that is a bug – unless it is from a player following someone in the game who is NOT set to private (that’s a Microsoft rule). QA is investigating.

VIII. Final Suggestions

A. Domination Gametype
Changed time to break hills from 2 seconds to 1 second.

B. Upgrade spectator mode (mega wish)
Extremely out of scope for Judgment, but excellent feedback for the future.

C. Theater mode (mega wish)
Extremely out of scope for Judgment, but excellent feedback for the future.

___

Lastly, this weekend’s event will be Torquebow Tag (back by popular demand!). With all the changes going through the game, we figured it would be best to let things stabilize and give everyone a chance to test thigns out and get a feel for everything. So TB Tag will stay up throughout the week, and we’ll look at the return of the Test Server next week.

As always, let us know what you think, and what you’d like to see next. See you all online!

Source: EpicGames forum

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