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Frosty

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61

Sunday, September 15th 2013, 1:47pm

OP! Panic knife in CQC will be equal to instant win.
So like good old times, eh?

VincentNZ

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Sunday, September 15th 2013, 1:55pm

The problem with the Engi kit, is, that whatever you choose, you are less efficient from the start than in BF3. Also if you are not planning to use mines, but equip the tool, to repair abandoned vehicles or to help out a teammate under pressure by repairing his, then you are gimped in several ways. You either chose a perk where you can not do a whole lot against armour, but can repair very well, or you are severely hindered in doing so, while having a 3 more rockets but have two completely useless traits in your perk line. The ones concerning mines. By the way the standard engi in BF3 had the tool and the RPG equipped, so people will now only choose between a higher chance of kills through RPGs and Mines, or to be that fully dedicated repair monkey for your driver. Now which one would you chose?

That is the whole problem with the upgradeds: The choices are only: Being fully dediacted squad player (at the expense of combat ability in some cases) or to be a selfish dick looking for kills or personal performance only. There is no place anymore for a hybrid build, where you enter a sensible balance between the two roles. A role where you still help a buddy in need, but are not gimping your other main role.

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Sunday, September 15th 2013, 2:27pm

That is the whole problem with the upgradeds: The choices are only: Being fully dediacted squad player (at the expense of combat ability in some cases) or to be a selfish dick looking for kills or personal performance only. There is no place anymore for a hybrid build, where you enter a sensible balance between the two roles. A role where you still help a buddy in need, but are not gimping your other main role.
See my post on the previous page: if DICE had made hybrid builds, there would be no choice involved in the perk selection because 90% of all engineers would choose just that, being the most flexible and including the best perks from both trees. We don't want an M16-like field upgrade path. If you go with the class-specific paths, then you must be ready to commit to a gadget and playstyle specialization.

You say that you are less efficient from the start than BF3, but that's based on the assumption that all engineers had access to the extra explosives perk in BF3. That's a fair assumption, but what if you wouldn't need 3 more rockets for your launchers in BF4? What if the RPG dealt more damage now so that you could realistically take on a tank yourself, provided you had the advantage of cover? And with the multi-purpose launchers like the SRAW (which can engage both air and ground targets well), you're now forced to commit instead of treading the same old M16 path of eliminating choice by giving the best of both worlds. And again, arguing that you need more rockets (or extra ammo for your main gun) is just reducing the reliance on support players. That support players are daft at giving out ammo is another issue entirely, one the perk balance shouldn't be centered around. We want to encourage teamwork by rewarding coordination between squad mates and kits, not reduce the need for it entirely by creating self-contained perk trees that have everything and never run out of ammo.

I completely agree about the mine perks, however. In my opinion, there should just be one mine perk (extra mines), so that if you chose to equip a repair tool with the anti-tank path you'd only be missing out on one perk. A sacrifice for more flexibility.

This post has been edited 2 times, last edit by "Jais" (Sep 15th 2013, 2:56pm)


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64

Sunday, September 15th 2013, 2:35pm

Assault: CQC

Resistance (less affected by laser, flashlight and flashbangs)
Grenades
Melee expert (enemy doesn't get a knife counter-attack chance)
Body armour
That is a seriously good idea! I love it. A nice, specialized tree that's perfect for the shotgun-wielding room clearer.

Quoted

Engineer: Combat engineer

Ammo
Body armour
Quick regen
Scan (passively marks nearby enemy vehicles and equipment on the minimap, even from inside a vehicle)
This, however, I don't think would work very well. There's no coherent theme here: what does being an engineer have to do with being buffed up with body armor and quick regen? And what's with the extra ammo - are engineers bullet-spewing machines? I get that you're trying to go for a front-line fighter, but it's not a niche that I think an engineer should have in the first place, and there are no gadget perks at all so it may as well be a global path. I think it's too similar to the defensive tree, and that it lacks an obvious, realistic niche. The scan is nice though, but could be overpowered with regards to mines and claymores.

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65

Sunday, September 15th 2013, 2:52pm

Engineer: Sapper
Rockets (Max 7 AT/AA rockets); Sprint (+10% speed); Fast Repair (+35% Repair Tool power); Flak (-15% explosive damage)

This removes the lack of a rocket upgrade for the Engineer and allows you to fill more of a vehicle support role, fixing your own vehicles whilst being able to defend against others (although the repair bonus would require you to build meter to unlock it).
While your other suggestions have a niche specialization, this one seems like a jack-of-all-trades, deficient-in-none. What I mean is that it's quite good compared to the Anti-tank and Mechanic specialization, and if I played engineer I would only pick this: you get rockets, fast repair and sprint. Flak is a nice bonus.

Yours is of course just a suggestion, but I think it touches on why DICE have balanced the paths the way they have. There are no middle-of-the-road class specific paths. Either you're a combat medic or a grenadier. Either you're a sniper or a spec-ops. You must specialize. The easy way out is to create a path that has both medic and grenadier abilities, obviating the need to make a choice. I actually like this, because if people could make their own paths it's quite clear that you could quickly cobble together the most powerful of all the class abilities, and I think DICE is right in not allowing custom, player-made paths. Of course you don't get to pick both rockets (which every engineer will want) and faster repair (boosts the prime engineer gadget). Assault tryhards will dearly want the Extra Ammo perk to reduce reliance on the support team mates, but to get it they need to pick the global Offensive path, steering them away from an assault specialization. Choices and consequences is good design.

Of course, not all paths are equal in this regard. I still find the support paths to be a confused, redundant mess. The Indirect Fire path has no coherent theme, with its name signalling that it's about shelling the enemy but its perks actually being about ammo, ammo and more ammo. That's an odd focus for a class that has unlimited ammo to begin with. The Perimeter Defense path is a defensive niche which is a decent focus, but why doesn't this path have the ammo bag upgrade and resupply unit perks? I think they would fit the defensive, supportive role more clearly. Comparing the recon and engineer paths, they all have really clear niches, but where the anti-tank path has the weak-sauce mine perks (two of them, even), the spec-ops path is gold. It has everything the modern ninja needs, and then some. The assault paths are somewhere in between these two, also having strong niches (medic and grenadier) but an average perk selection which is neither too good nor too weak.

Finally, I'm betting that we'll see more perks with the DLCs - perhaps not with every expansion but I think they're definately coming. It's a prime opportunity for DICE to balance the perks, but also for upsetting the balance by introducing exactly the type of middle-of-the-road paths that I mentioned above. I hope they think carefully about what new perk paths they make, and don't just give players the ideal selection that everyone clamors for.
I understand entirely what you mean. Perhaps to make my Sapper class less dominant in all categories the Fast Repair upgrade should be swapped with the Flak upgrade to make it a much more meter dependent bonus and make it a reward for continued squad play, much like the Defib upgrade in the Pointman specialisation. However, I do think not having the Repair Unit aura or Mines upgrades (or what I talk about for the Anti-Tank class below) does balance the Sapper to some extent.

The reason I placed it where I did was in an attempt to not make it locked behind too much meter building and allow the class to reach its potential more easily. I looked at classes like the Spec Ops, Grenadier and Anti.Tank, which ideally need to reach level 3 meter as fast as possible and stay there for full effectiveness, and applied a similar logic here.

However, I think the main problem with the Sapper class lies in the fact that the Anti-Tank class is, in my opinion, fractured and sluggish, as it doesn't include a "killer upgrade" like Fast Repair, Motion Sensors or a vehicle aura. This is mainly due to the Mines and More Deployed explosives meaning half the upgrades are solely focused around one gadget, a feature which is not seen in any of the other specialisations available for any class.
Whilst I didn't want to create any upgrades of my own for my classes, I do think that the best way to give the Anti-Tank class real character would be to merge these two upgrades into the first slot, move Flak to the third and introduce a new upgrade for the fourth slot. as most weapons now have some form of lock-on ability, an infantry version of Beam Scanning could be a possible choice for the fourth slot.

@Frosty: I'm sorry to say you've done quite the opposite of what I intended to do. With the Combat Engineer, you've got the Ammo perk when DICE have somewhat conspicuously left it out of the Engi trees. Also, you've given him an auto spot aura which works even outside vehicles when he already has the resupply aura and spotting is the Recon's game. As for the CQC specialisation, Melee specialisation on the Assault? Seriously?
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VincentNZ

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66

Sunday, September 15th 2013, 3:39pm

That is the whole problem with the upgradeds: The choices are only: Being fully dediacted squad player (at the expense of combat ability in some cases) or to be a selfish dick looking for kills or personal performance only. There is no place anymore for a hybrid build, where you enter a sensible balance between the two roles. A role where you still help a buddy in need, but are not gimping your other main role.
See my post on the previous page: if DICE had made hybrid builds, there would be no choice involved in the perk selection because 90% of all engineers would choose just that, being the most flexible and including the best perks from both trees. We don't want an M16-like field upgrade path. If you go with the class-specific paths, then you must be ready to commit to a gadget and playstyle specialization.

You say that you are less efficient from the start than BF3, but that's based on the assumption that all engineers had access to the extra explosives perk in BF3. That's a fair assumption, but what if you wouldn't need 3 more rockets for your launchers in BF4? What if the RPG dealt more damage now so that you could realistically take on a tank yourself, provided you had the advantage of cover? And with the multi-purpose launchers like the SRAW (which can engage both air and ground targets well), you're now forced to commit instead of treading the same old M16 path of eliminating choice by giving the best of both worlds. And again, arguing that you need more rockets (or extra ammo for your main gun) is just reducing the reliance on support players. That support players are daft at giving out ammo is another issue entirely, one the perk balance shouldn't be centered around.

I completely agree about the mine perks, however. In my opinion, there should just be one mine perk (extra mines), so that if you chose to equip a repair tool with the anti-tank path you'd only be missing out on one perk. A sacrifice for more flexibility.
Yep I see where you are coming from. And you are right, too, if you we would be playing on a server together with all the symthic users, that usually are people that dig down deeper in mechanics. However this will hardly be the case. See the average player plays for fun and does not really care about the mechanics of this game, and Battlefield being a shooter he defines the fun mostly about kills, most people, even I who is rather dedicated towards the team, look at the scoreboard and if the outcome is positive it was a good round. Now that is their good right.
Now in BF3 team actions often happened casually and random. Somebody just found out he had a Defib and that he could revive that guy he was treading on already easy enough. Or an innocent bystander noticed he had that repair torch and was just crossing the street to give out some auto club maintenance to the friendly IFV driver. Or that Ammo guy just saw that an Asault was running after himself for 50m constantly shouting "I need ammo!", well after pulling out his sidearm and accidentally throwing a grenade to his feet he puts down his ammo box. Now that was what I liked about BF. People in general are selfish, but happen to be great persons after all if you point them roughly in the right direction. Having team-oriented equipment by default is a great thing. What can happen now is the following:

That guy standing on the corpse, notices (or not) that he is standing rather uncomfy on a deceased teammate but neither has a broom equipped to swipe him away nor a Defib to put him back to life, because a quick medpack and Grenade launcher offered more personal combat ability. The automobile-club executive will realise that the only thing he can do about the burning IFV is coating the vehicle with a load of 1000 load of melting copper apllied by the M2 SLAM, thus giving it a new tiger paintjob before it explodes.
The ammo guy can at least perform some kind of teamwork by putting up a perimeter defense with 3 claymores to all side and putting up a Anti-missile defense line around the friendly Assault. Well that does not help with having no ammo, but at least he is safe from any form of incoming weaponry, and if a guy happens to walk in that claymore he will be happy to get his kit and thus, the ammo problem is soved.

The whole point of hybrid setups is to perform both your duties well enough. I was really excited about the specializations at first, because I thought they were working squad wide like in BF3. Furthermore you can choose your gadgets freely, totally creating the possibility of liberating yourself totally from any form of teamwork. That is bad. Now I like mines, but the tool is my first choice, I like blowing tanks up as well. In BF4 I have no place anymore. Now you could argue that the hybrid engi was somewhat OP in BF3, but he seems a joke in BF4. Being a repair monkey in BF3 already is a thankful job, because you are fully exposed to the enemy while your mate is in the cosy tank, you are not getting a lot of kills either, but are ensuring the driver is capable of continous fighting. Sometimes you are forced out of your vehicle as well, and then you will suddenly see how gimped you really are with 3 (4?) rockets at your disposal and an underpowered weapon class at your disposal. Your only hope is another vehicle coming by where you can be the monkey again. That is a bit exaggerating of course but it meets the tone.

And this applies to all classes really to some extent. I guess many Assaults will still use the medpack and probabyl a few even the Defi alongside, but what about supports that want to throw an ammo pack and have C4 or anything else alongside with some teamplay asset? They are screwed around perk lines that cater to an offensive kill-intensive build and are useless to a major to huge extent. Some things are totally neglected, what about spawn beacons? I love sneaking behind enemy lines (great on linear maps) place a beacon and ensure the enemy is flanked from all sides. BF4 screws over these people as well. As recon you are either encouraged to set up tent up in the mountains or to equip C4 and clays and lawn-mowing your way through vehicles, infantry, setting up a perimeter defense with your clays etc. At least a smartly placed T-UGS will have some sort of teamplay value, but most will just use it to make sure any visitors to their campsite are dealt with. Or they will equip C4 because there might just be, sometime in the future, a vehicle might cross their path. Great value.

What I am saying is: You are greatly robbing the ability for random acts of helpfulness that happen so often in BF3. I do not need an Assault on my team that runs over my corpse because the Defi is not equipped by default. What I need is someone that helps me although I might have to press Q a couple of times til he gets what I am at. Overspecializing classes, or even splitting them up does not help at all.

Teamplay, and I have said it multiple times, should be made as easy as possible, so you can peform acts of kindness on a regular basis without sacrificing yourself. Otherwise you are limiting it to a smaller group of people, that would have played together anyway.

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Sunday, September 15th 2013, 3:53pm

In BF3 the vehicles didn't have enough customization slots so you had to pick between countermeasures and optics. Countermeasures were always more important so viable choice was very limited. In BF4 they fixed this by giving each upgrade type it's own slot and making you choose an optic between optics and a countermeasure between countermeasures. This makes each choice more viable.

I feel like the Field Upgrades are making the same mistake again where each upgrade is not equivalent in power at each level, making some upgrades just generally always good. So steal the idea from the BF4 vehicles upgrade and weapon attachment systems and do the same with the Field Upgrades. Imagine something like this:
Level 1: Utility Slot - Pick from Mobility, stealth enhancing, etc
Level 2: Defensive Slot - Pick from Damage reductions, suppression reductions, healing upgrades, etc
Level 3: Offensive Slot - Pick from ammo increases, suppression increases, etc
Level 4: Wildcard Slot - Pick either another upgrade from the Utility, Defensive, or Offensive slots not currently being used, or a class specific upgrade

Already sounds more interesting than the kinda lame system they have now.
The fact that someone has an opinion, doesn't make their opinion a fact. Making just arguments first requires an acknowledgement of intellectual humility, while valid arguments require you to not commit fallacies of logic and rhetoric.

Frosty

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Sunday, September 15th 2013, 4:10pm

This, however, I don't think would work very well. There's no coherent theme here: what does being an engineer have to do with being buffed up with body armor and quick regen? And what's with the extra ammo - are engineers bullet-spewing machines? I get that you're trying to go for a front-line fighter, but it's not a niche that I think an engineer should have in the first place, and there are no gadget perks at all so it may as well be a global path. I think it's too similar to the defensive tree, and that it lacks an obvious, realistic niche. The scan is nice though, but could be overpowered with regards to mines and claymores.
I just thought about which perks I'd wish for if I played engineer expecting lots of infantry and just the occasional vehicle. I don't think of this as a niche application at all. As I see it, the majority of players who choose engineer do so because they want the option to attack and repair vehicles alongside decent infantry combat abilities. In BF3, the squad spec system allowed the combination of +ammo and +explosives, which left engineers fairly independent of supporters. But this won't be the case in any of BF4's field upgrade paths or the one I proposed, since none of them combine "ammo" with "rockets". In any case, I agree that my proposition probably isn't that well thought-out.

@Frosty: I'm sorry to say you've done quite the opposite of what I intended to do. With the Combat Engineer, you've got the Ammo perk when DICE have somewhat conspicuously left it out of the Engi trees. Also, you've given him an auto spot aura which works even outside vehicles when he already has the resupply aura and spotting is the Recon's game. As for the CQC specialisation, Melee specialisation on the Assault? Seriously?
I don't envision "scan" as a spot aura. Things would only be visible to that individual engineer and only on his minimap. No (3D) spotting involved there. And what does the support class' resupply aura have to do with my "Combat Engineer"?

On the topic of the melee specialization:

Yeah, seriously.

Actual melee in BF4 isn't even an option because of that ridiculous counterattack that even a blind 3-year old with attention-deficit could pull off. So why not throw a wild card into the mix? The knife's doesn't have the BC2-style lunge anyway and I didn't even include sprint in the loadout. Not to mention, knifing in this game takes time - it's not like MW2 or anything where a knifer with his l337 commando-marathon-whatever perks could single-handedly clear out a room full of dudes. You knife someone in BF3/4, you're making yourself an easy target for anyone nearby.

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Sunday, September 15th 2013, 4:38pm

Sorry, I meant to say Repair aura. I was saying that any sort of Intel aura should be on the Recon, who doesn't already have a vehicle aura (although I think proximity scan will still be a thing and so this would be pointless). An out of vehicle aura would also promote leaving gadgets being, which would be a hindrance to the team if it didn't show up for your teammates either.

I see your point on the melee, although hopefully it won't be as bad as it looks. However, given that the Assault is already the most powerful close range anti infantry class (not counting Engi's with PDWs, as we don't know how deadly they'll be yet) it would be I'll advised to give them complete melee dominance.

I also don't like having Armour outside of the Defensive specialisation, especially on Assault, as I think that the Recon should be used to take down high priority targets like Medics and Anti Tank troops. Assault in particular shouldn't be given Armour as a class specialisation as the Recon is a partial counter to Medics, as one hit kills negate healing.
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Sunday, September 15th 2013, 5:00pm

The whole point of hybrid setups is to perform both your duties well enough. I was really excited about the specializations at first, because I thought they were working squad wide like in BF3. Furthermore you can choose your gadgets freely, totally creating the possibility of liberating yourself totally from any form of teamwork. That is bad. Now I like mines, but the tool is my first choice, I like blowing tanks up as well. In BF4 I have no place anymore. Now you could argue that the hybrid engi was somewhat OP in BF3, but he seems a joke in BF4. Being a repair monkey in BF3 already is a thankful job, because you are fully exposed to the enemy while your mate is in the cosy tank, you are not getting a lot of kills either, but are ensuring the driver is capable of continous fighting. Sometimes you are forced out of your vehicle as well, and then you will suddenly see how gimped you really are with 3 (4?) rockets at your disposal and an underpowered weapon class at your disposal. Your only hope is another vehicle coming by where you can be the monkey again. That is a bit exaggerating of course but it meets the tone.

I understand your concerns. That's also why I push for upgrade paths to always leave room for a teamwork-gadget such as the repair tool or ammo bag (and why I think the support paths are complete garbage because they do the exact opposite). Let's take the grenadier path: here the only gadget 'requirement' is that you equip a grenade launcher to fully benefit from the path. You're still free to choose either a defib or medpack. I think that's a good compromise, while still being a clear niche.

Now, what if you want to run with both a repair tool and a rocket launcher as an engineer? You have a few options. If you going to be more focused on repairing than hunting vehicles, the Mechanic path is actually quite viable. It boosts your repair ability and with a launcher equipped you're still not wasting any perk slots. You will, however, be missing out on extra rockets but that's the price you pay for flexibility. Alternatively, you could take the Anti-tank path, but as we all know here you're more or less forced to run with mines unless you're willing to waste 2 perk slots. I think that's too much. If they trimmed the mine perks down to 1, it would be more bearable - in this case you could decide that you are more into hunting vehicles than repairing them, but sacrificing a perk slot for your gadget flexibility. Finally, you could take a global path, such as Offensive or Defensive. Here there aren't any wasted perk slots, leaving you free to customize your gadgets however you see fit. The downside is that you don't improve in any of the areas where your class excels.

As for the recon that loves to play around with the spawn beacon, here I think the global paths actually are quite viable options. Take a look at the Shadow path: Quick Unspot, Reduced Fall, Sprint and Stealth. That's actually quite close to the Spec-Ops path, while still leaving you room for customizing your gadgets however you like. I would totally go with that if I operated behind enemy lines and used something like the spawn beacon and PLD/SOFLAM. In this case I also think that DICE will eventually cater to other gadget combinations with DLC paths: the C4-support, the spotter-recon and the shotgun-assault, to name a few. I think they're coming.