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  • "Tibberclaw" started this thread

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Tuesday, October 23rd 2012, 11:15pm

Battlefield 3's #1 Balance Problem: Vehicle Perks

So, a while ago, rainkloud did a Vehicle Perks survey that clearly identified which perks were drastically over/under-used. He also proposed a lot of changes that were designed to solve these problems. I want to revitalize that topic, because it seems like everyone is getting overly bogged down in discussions about gun/attachment balance that are really insignificant at this point. For the most part, gun balance is in a pretty good place now; we have seen weapons and attachments tweaked more and more over the last several patches. I don't think DICE should completely ignore gun balance now, but I think they should finally turn their focus away from guns and make vehicle perks their #1 balancing issue.

I think we need to figure out some solutions to vehicle perk balance that will require as little change as possible; rainkloud had a few suggestions that were not universally liked by everyone here because they deemed the changes too drastic. So, lets figure out some ideas that will create an interesting perk balance, but will be mild enough that DICE will seriously consider implementing it.

These are the perks I think are the most problematic. We might balance some perks by a direct buff/nerf or indirect buff/nerf (i.e. buffing/nerfing alternatives). What do you guys think is the best way to balance with minimal changes?

Solutions are ordered in terms of simplicity (i.e. Solution #1: most simple, Solution #2: less simple, Solution #3: least simple).

NOTE: If I'm neglecting something from the list, then let me know.

----------

Overused Vehicle Perks

Air Radar (Jets)
  • Solution #1: No change. Buff slot 1 alternatives.
  • Solution #2: Make perk passive (like Below Radar) so other slot 1 perks do not have to compete with it.
  • Solution #3: Change vehicle icons to dots.
Reactive Armor (all)
  • Solution #1: No change. Buff slot 1 alternatives.
  • Solution #2: Remove ability to repair Reactive Armor.
  • Solution #3: MBT and Tank Destroyer shells penetrate armor.
IR Smoke (all)
  • Solution #1: Increase cooldown (1-2 additional seconds).*
  • Solution #2: Remove ability to distract incoming missiles.*
  • Solution #3:
* = Javelin might need a nerf before this is feasible. Perhaps significantly reduce Javelin range for non-laser targets.

APFSDS-T Shells (IFVs)
  • Solution #1: Reduce damage (10%-15%).
  • Solution #2: Increase reload time. This will prevent endless alternation between primary and secondary fire.
  • Solution #3: Make primary and secondary share reload time (like Canister Shell change).


Underused Vehicle Perks


Thermal Camo (all)
  • Solution #1: No change. Nerf IR Smoke and it will become more useful.
  • Solution #2:
  • Solution #3:
Maintenance (all)
  • Solution #1: Increase vehicle health auto-repair rate (damaged) and decrease vehicle health decay rate (disabled).
  • Solution #2: Significantly decrease time until auto-repair begins and significantly increase the time until decay begins.
  • Solution #3: Improve vehicle handling and speed while disabled.
Extinguisher (all air vehicles)
  • Solution #1: Reduce cooldown (5-10 fewer seconds).
  • Solution #2: Increase heal amount to 50% of maximum health (i.e. 15% above the 35% disable threshold).
  • Solution #3:
Proximity Scanner (all air vehicles)
  • Solution #1: Increase scan radius (50%-100%) for all air vehicles.
  • Solution #2: Remove the perk from all air vehicles.
  • Solution #3:

Autoloader/Belt Speed (all)
  • Solution #1: Move perk from slot 1 to slot 3. This allows players to choose between having a secondary weapon or an improved primary weapon. It also prevents the perk from having to compete with slot 1 alternatives.
  • Solution #2:
  • Solution #3:

Canister Shell (MBTs, Tank Destroyers)
  • Solution #1: Increase pellet count and spread.
  • Solution #2:
  • Solution #3:

This post has been edited 23 times, last edit by "Tibberclaw" (Oct 25th 2012, 7:41pm)


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Tuesday, October 23rd 2012, 11:18pm

Proximity Scanner shouldn't even exist on air vehicles. They should just remove it. No reason to use it on my jet when I'm going at mach speeds.

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  • "Tibberclaw" started this thread

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Tuesday, October 23rd 2012, 11:26pm

Proximity Scanner shouldn't even exist on air vehicles. They should just remove it. No reason to use it on my jet when I'm going at mach speeds.
Sadly, I agree with you. The perk is just so out of place and nonsensical that the only feasible way to balance it would be to make the scan radius absolutely enormous...

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Tuesday, October 23rd 2012, 11:31pm

The scan radius isn't the problem--it's the fact that the minimap is so small that it won't work unless they expanded the scale of the minimap. But we already have that--it's called Air Radar.

I don't know why they included the two together when Air Radar is absolutely better. It's like comparing a cell phone from 2002 with an iPhone.

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Also, sad day when your phone corrects FAMAS to be in caps. Damn it.

That's not bad. My phone corrected "lets deforest Caspian Boarder" into "Lets de-foreskin Asians".... I think my phone is a racist pervert....

I would start singing Disney, but then I would be led on a path of destruction, eventually ending up with a boyfriend who is actually a skull with Macaroni and cheese.


a la Miley Cyrus

An edit by Auto in response to a couple of images of dead Union soldiers from the US Civil War:
Not what Auto wanted to see whilst eating his breakfast.... Put me off my cheerios dammit:/

God I feel like someone just hit me over the head with a bust of Sigmund Freud :D
Fucking hell!

Pandemic 2 made me hate Madagascar more than any other country in the world.

  • "Tibberclaw" started this thread

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Tuesday, October 23rd 2012, 11:36pm

The scan radius isn't the problem--it's the fact that the minimap is so small that it won't work unless they expanded the scale of the minimap.
Doesn't the Proximity Scanner sweep reveal enemies on the minimap for teammates not in the vehicle as well? If so, then a massive scan radius could be beneficial even if it went beyond the scope of the pilot's minimap...

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Wednesday, October 24th 2012, 12:03am

OP Stuff:
Reactive Armor: repair time per panel 3s -> 4s
IR Smoke: No change. Until Javelins are nerfed, a hard counter is necessary. Because a 2HK that doesn't require aiming is totally balanced. Try tanking without Smoke on any open map. It doesn't work.
Proximity scan for land gunners: Add gunner seat unlocks for tanks.** A motion sensor automatically activates when the CITV station is occupied (as per Battlelog's description of the CITV)
Air Radar: Increase Below Radar ceiling for Air Radar from 25m to 50m for jets only. Allows safer low flight so jets can get below air radar for longer periods.
Anus-Piercing Shells: Damage vs. tanks 55%. An LAV will still win a 1v1 as it needs 5 hits to be disabled (front, left, right reactives) whereas an MBT would be dead in 4 volleys of HE+AP Shells.

Underpowered unlocks:
Jet Proximity Scan: Triple scan range, make it act as a cylinder rather than a sphere (scan from high altitudes)
Canister Shell, TOW, Cannon HE, Guided Missile: Remove longer switch time for these weapons. The following changes should be made to reduce OP-ness:
TOW velocity +67%, damage vs. vehicles -40%--prevents from being used as two main cannons, makes it better for long-range as is presumably intended
Canister Shell: Pellets 12-15, Spread 1.0->1.5, Damage Multiplier against soft targets -40%. Nets reduced power against aircraft and reduced ability to snipe but with similar power to stop infantry at medium range.

Misc:
HMG: Allow ability to destroy AT Mines in 2 hits. It comes up much less frequently than you would expect but seeing something along these lines in the patch notes would encourage people to try it. Consider it a placebo to get people to try it out for once.


Proximity scan is quite useful in Scout and Attack helicopters. If you're trying to stick low and capture flags, it's probably the best perk because you can use it to figure out if guys are about to RPG you. In general, I consider it the best Scout Heli unlock and best or second best (depending on role) Attack Helicopter unlock.

**Gunner for LAV and MBT:
Slot 1: Maintenance, Thermal Camo, Autoloader
Slot 2: Thermal Optics, Zoom Optics
Slot 3: LMG, HMG
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Wednesday, October 24th 2012, 12:48am

Prox Scan for Chopper gunners is actually really effective. When coupled with thermals, you're literally a killing machine.
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Wednesday, October 24th 2012, 3:56am

Reactive is not overused in tanks, but everything except that and proximity is probably underused.

Everyone is using smoke because they made Javalins so powerful, nerfing the smoke would make Javalins OP. Smoke doesn't even work all the time(regardless of range).

Any nerf to air radar would just be stupid, maybe buff the other specs instead of making them all useless?

Basically, buff useless specs instead of nerfing the good ones.


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Wednesday, October 24th 2012, 4:00am

I have to disagree with you about air radar, Steve. You make a good point on making the worthless perks better (lol proximity in air vehicles?) but air radar is just so good that it's a necessity. If they could perhaps make terrain hide aircraft from radar instead of the crappy below radar system and have a radar pulse that gave an aircraft's location at a single point instead of constantly tracking, it would make pilots rely more on their eyes, and less on their hud.
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Wednesday, October 24th 2012, 4:13am

Here's some of my ideas for vehicle spec balance.

Overused

Air Radar: Swap the vehicle icons on air radar for dots. Radar would then only reveal the location of a vehicle, not the type of vehicle or the direction it's headed.

Reactive Armor: Make it so reactive armor no longer prevents damage from tank shells, only "weaker" weapons like RPG's. Rather than an advantage in all situations, it would be situational. Reactive would be great for protecting yourself on infantry heavy maps, but in an armor battle, you'd be better off with autoloader.

IR smoke: Remove the ability to distract incoming missiles. At the same time limit guided missiles and Javelins to laser designated targets. I've gone over my reasoning in another thread, guided missile vs. IR smoke balance.

APFSDS-T: Reduce damage vs. vehicles to 15% more than HE rounds. Change standard IFV rounds to be stopped by reactive armor for the first few shots, while AP shells retain the ability to penetrate it. APFSDS-T shells main role would then be providing IFV's a way to defeat reactive armor.

Jet Rockets: Remove their tracking ability. Currently jet rockets behave like attack heli guided rockets. Removing their tracking ability would take away their ability to "snipe" tanks from across the map, forcing jets to fly lower and make themselves a little more vulnerable if they want to be effective with rockets. The changes to smoke and guided missiles should make the guided missiles a very effective ranged AT weapon when used with a spotter on the ground.

Underused


Thermal Camo: With the changes to IR smoke and guided missiles above, thermal camo should be a bit more useful as a way to help counter a persistent AT team, or heli crew.

Canister Shell: Canister needs to do massive damage to make it worth choosing over the LMG. A big increase in number of pellets, and possibly a little more spread should do the trick.

Maintenance: In addition to faster regen rate, and shorter delay, maintenance should improve a vehicle's speed and handling while disabled. Vehicles with maintenance would recover from light damage faster, and would have an easier time retreating to repair if disabled.

Extinguisher: Change extinguisher to an auto-repair button that can be used any time, rather than only when disabled. Reduce the cooldown to 10s, and make extinguisher restore 20% health each time it's used. It still wouldn't be very useful for helicopters due to stingers, but I could see it being useful for jets in hardcore.

Proximity Scan: Guys no. Proximity Scan is one of my favorite upgrades for scout helis. It's what I ask all my copilots to run. It's great for spotting enemies hiding inside buildings on maps like Sharqi. While it may be underused, and kind of pointless on the other aircraft, it's great for scouts. A scan radius buff would make it a bit more useful for scout helis, and possibly for attack helis. Simply removing it is not the answer.

Finally, the Mobile Artillery needs a horn. Just thought I'd throw that out there while we're on the topic of vehicles.
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