List of game breaking balance issues

Thoughts on the further development of Haven & Hearth? Feel free to opine!

List of game breaking balance issues

Postby SnuggleSnail » Sun Jan 12, 2020 4:51 am

Uniform quality growth, randomized crop growth times

Problem
Uniform quality growth, and random growth timers makes manually farming for quality anywhere near optimally unreasonably time consuming for a human. As a result, automation is the only way to raise cropQ anywhere near optimally. Having significantly higherQ flax than your opponent, and spending hundreds of less man hours on it is an unreasonably large advantage there's no reason for botters to have.

Solution
Revert the uniform quality growth, to a random -/+5, and give each crop a static growth time. More controversially, when dried wild windsown seeds should have a chance to be equal quality to the best crops from the previous season to allow new players to catch up to people who've been botting crops since the start of the world. Additionally, the rate at which crop quality increases being static would be positive, EX: +3 every harvest, instead of +5/-3.

Coracles

Problem
Coracles are ping dependent. You've 200MS, you lose 400MS worth of running time you enter a river. 200MS for the flower menu, 200MS to actually enter the coracle, and that's just ENTERING the river, let alone leaving it. It's absurd to me that ping was cited as being part of the reason the last combat rework was scrapped, when this has existed for years. Losing between .5-2 seconds worth of gap every time you've to cross a river makes it neigh impossible to catch/escape a competent runner with significantly better ping than you. Especially when terrain like this exists:
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Solution
Ideally, remove coracles. Zero people like them with regard to PVP, and I've seen like zero people use them for any other reason all world. Actually zero. Alternatively, if removing content feels too bad (even though IMO in this case it's right to do so), making them just give a swimming speed bonus when equipped with an animation instead of them being liftable/mountable objects.

Sleds

Problem
If you don't have one when it's relevant you fricken die. Esp in patchy terrain I think they're a problem, since you might be forced to ditch your sled, whereas only one of your opponents needs to ditch theirs, and the other can take a longer route but still catch up due to the sled's speed. The second opponent can pick up the first, and they can double hit you from it while having higher movement speed which is basically a death sentence even if they've like 1/5th, or 1/10thyour stats. Also, tbh it seems like too sure of an escape to have them stash on snowy mountains tbqh.

Solution
Make it behave more like a coracle. It should be an inventory or equippable object. It would be better if it behaved like the improved version of a coracle suggested above, but should involve a lot less mounting/dismounting, so it's of lesser importance even if still better.

Flower Menu

Problem
Flower menu is ping dependent. This doesn't matter much for single click tasks, but if you have a race to process a cupboard of chickens between somebody with 400MS, and somebody with 10MS, even if the 400MS person has starcraft pro tier APM, they will lose the race by an like a minute. I think most Australians I know use scripts even to just eat energy food with scripting magic workarounds because of how time consuming flower menu intensive activities are.

Solution
If a keybind corresponding to the flower menu is being held down, the flower menu should not appear at all, and that action should be done. For example, when eating without a table you would hold down 1, and right click on every piece of food you want to consume.

Heart Containers

Problem
People have too much HP, and it's dumb. I should be able to kill people in 1cleave with 3k strength. There should not be a way to infinitely grind HP with no diminishing returns, or time constraint at all. Additionally, I would suggest it adds too much advantage to people able to produce wealth in game through means like highQ anvils/pepperbotting/buying bulk subs. Bunsey went from like 5kHP-7KHP purely of heart containers in world10 between the time ant dungeons were released and the end of the world, from just buying containers. It's dumb as frick.

Solution
pick 1
1) Make heart containers give constitution instead of flat HP
2) Limit the number of HP one can gain from containers
3) Replace the heart container drop with something else, like abyssal insight, or maybe something cool like tie it in with the wild windsown seed suggestion above and have it give topQ seeds from last season.

Scholarly Accounts

Problem
They're broken overpowered in terms of LP/hour, they make it require LESS EFFORT to fill your study with something that is probably more than 50% better than the alternative that is more effort. You need AT LEAST 2 scholars per real character to take full advantage of them, and they're BONKERS with icicles, not in and of themselves, but because so many retarded 300-600k LP 2x2 curios have been added.

Solution
I literally cannot think of a way to change scholarly accounts that makes them not overpowered to the point of necessity. If you only got 1 scholar account per day, and could only study 1 scholar account at a time, and they didn't give bonus LP over the curio they were used on they would still be overpowered. Please just remove them.

Edit: Actually, a decent way to balance them could be to have them give LP equal to, or lesser than the curio they're made from, retain the size of the curio they're made from, and count as the curio they're made from in terms of study limitation. EX: can't study both an account of a strawdoll and a straw doll.

Ageless Ice

Problem
Gives too much LP. The problem isn't with the ice in and of itself, but its interaction with overpowered curios(blowholes, troll skulls, orca brains, etc) and scholarly accounts.

Solution
Nerf the curios, and remove scholarly accounts. If you do neither of the previous two for some reason, just make ageless ice give like 1-2M base lp, unaffected by LP mods.

Anvil Spiraling

Problem
1) Having a topQ anvil gives too much of an economic advantage. (((heart containers)))
2) The only way of even hoping to have anywhere near the topQ anvil is abusing massive botfarms. There is no reason for anybody outside like 5 large villages to spiral anvils, and even then by the end of the world it'll only be like 2-3 at absolute most.
3) The advantage factions get from having better anvils is insane. It's not unrealistic for two people to have equal stats, but one can 30/30 cleave the other for 5%+ of his HP, and take basically nothing from a 30/30 because of B12/armor advantage, and it's not realistic for the lesser in this situation to get equal gear.

Solution
Remove. Metal. Spiraling.
Pretty sure you're already planning to, so it's w/e

Meteorite(If anvil spiraling is removed)

Problem
Ore/rockQ too high. Snowballing bad in a perma-death game. The side that's already winning shouldn't become increasingly powerful off of initial victories beyond their opponents no longer being alive, for what I feel are obvious reasons. Also, if meteorite ore is required for highQ armor/b12s, it will again create a situation akin to anvil spiraling where only very few can really be on an even playing field with regard to combat.

Solution
IDK dude I'm PRETTY SURE people would still turn up to meteorite fights if it were literally cosmetic.

Drinking with high ping

Problem
It might seem trivial when you've not actually play with it, but a delay between when you press drink and when you actually drink means less drinking between turns. It can outright means you can't drink if you're forced to turn enough, whereas somebody with lower ping could get gulps in between turns. This is EXTREMELY noticeable with high ping, especially when using drinking scripts that don't have any ping compensation(literally just right click>drink from belt), which is all that is publically available.

Solution
IMO, making movement not cancel drinking with a keybind to stop drink would be fine, but people suggested that and it got shot down pretty hard for like no reason if I remember correctly. An alternate solution would be to have water consumes/stamina go up at the start of the drinking channel, instead of the end, with each's gulp's the channel not being individually cancellable.

Raw Hide XP cost is too high

Problem
Most people, like, upwards of 95% I'd estimate do not have enough XP to raw hide enough times if attacked by a group of mounted people. Like, not by several orders of magnitude. I personally have had my life saved by stealing from realm coffers AT LEAST 5 times. We can all agree mounts in combat is cancer and not something anybody wants.

Solution
Reduced Raw Hide's XP cost exponentially. Like, to 50 or 100. This would still make it more costly than it was in w10, if you account for how much more valuable/hard to get XP is now.

Truffles

Problem
Especially white truffles are not humanly obtainable in the quantities needed to be used on everything. In order to eat optimally you need truffles on everything, and specifically high quality truffles. Q10 is worthless. They are directly comparable to pepper in world 10. It is an advantage for botters that absolutely doesn't need to be there.

Solution
Either add a wound(which would make them irrelevant since pepper would be better, or make pepper irrelevant if truffles are better even if they are separate wounds because ancient roots), or IMO the better option: make them much, much more common and spawn in greater quantities. Everybody having them is the same as nobody having them, but with extra steps.

+quality to local node quests

Problem
There isn't one yet, afaik!
However, I would point out nobody cares about them to the degree they literally didn't work all of world 10 and nobody cared about it enough to even notice it was broken. However, I am 2000% sure eventually some nerd will figure out how to abuse it and get Q500 cave clay. the 99.99% chance somebody will break it doesn't seem worth the upside of it existing in its current form

Solution
I assume based on your previous comments you want this to exist for some thematic reason related to the world slowly improving over time, so I'm going to suggest there be an internal cap on the quality of all naturally spawning items. For example, say 90 for truffles. If there were a Q10 truffle area, one could very slowly over time quest it to 90. If there were a 87 base truffle node, one could _relatively_ quickly raise it to 90. Manually assigning quality caps to everything would be a bit tedious, so I'd suggest a Qcap of 90 for all foragables, and 500 for all animals would be reasonable. (((I actually think wild animals should cap closer to 300, but based on current natural qualities 500 is more reasonable)))

People without rage cannot reasonably die

Problem
I. Can't. Kill. People.
People can be aggressive towards me, and I can't murder them. They can fuck with me, I can repeatedly slam my axe into their face after playing an order of magnitude better than them in the fight, and having double their stats, but they're back doing whatever they were doing originally to make me want them to die the next day. This goes against what I thought was the spirit of the game, and is for me personally so game breaking that after playing haven fairly consistently since legacy I will not be playing another world beyond catching up with friends if this remains.

Additionally, and far less importantly, I think people that don't buy rage actively have less fun because of it - but there's an massive incentive to not have rage, so lots of people just don't buy it. idk how to eloquently explain what I mean, but it's my firm belief that incentivizing this unfun play is more harmful to the overall "fun" produced by haven than people dying a bit more.

Solution
Revert to world 10 death mechanics & HHP damage on weapons. Raise weapons HHP% on things other than B12 so the relative amount of HHP damage they do is thematically desireable for you if you must, but 50% on B12/soldier sword is a bare minimum in my opinion. Preferably 60%.

Alternatively, my preference would be just everybody is killable when they get KOed, but I think that might be worse for the game, and less people's preference.
Last edited by SnuggleSnail on Sun Jan 12, 2020 1:28 pm, edited 11 times in total.
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Re: List of game breaking balance issues

Postby Fierce_Deity » Sun Jan 12, 2020 5:55 am

Nice post, some good suggestions in here.

As far as death/rage goes I don't feel like world 10 mechanics are the answer. Personally, I don't think we need death in this game. At all. I'd prefer to see something along the lines of a massive wound that docks your stats by a percentage while it exist. The larger the wound, the larger the percentage. Self-healing time could be a month, and could be reduced to 2-weeks via ancestral worship. No roots. You get punished for being 'killed' but not royally screwed. Everything you had is obtainable again, you can learn from your mistakes and go back to the fight. You can have a 2 year old character 'die' and not be like "Oh there goes literal months of effort".

Could rework nidbanes to apply that wound too.
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Re: List of game breaking balance issues

Postby Ardennesss » Sun Jan 12, 2020 6:09 am

Fierce_Deity wrote: Self-healing time could be a month
Fierce_Deity wrote:
You can have a 2 year old character 'die' and not be like "Oh there goes literal months of effort".
I think most OG players agree that the fear of death in Haven is part of what makes Haven such an engaging game, in most other games if you're being chased by something dangerous and you think you're going to die it's just "woops that sucks" but there's no real punishment for those decisions. Running from 10 russians hell bent on killing me in W7 was the most exciting thing I've ever done in any game ever, BECAUSE of the fight or flight response around getting away or losing months of work.
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Re: List of game breaking balance issues

Postby SnuggleSnail » Sun Jan 12, 2020 6:13 am

"haha oh no I can't use one of my many characters for two weeks" is an unacceptably low maximum penalty to losing.
The combat in this game is not, and never will be as skill based/competitive/balanced/polished/etc as [insert any moba/rts/etc here].

The strength of this game is that it is extremely social, and that actions can carry consequences with serious weight. Back in legacy when I randomly killed somebody for fun for the first time I was distraught for days. Like, it genuinely made me feel like an absolute piece of shit. I accidentally ran over my pet dog when I was like 12, and my grandfather made me put it out of its misery. It felt extremely similar to killing that little russian hermit, except this time I had to live with the fact I did it intentionally for fun, or to feel strong, or whatever was going through 14-year-old-me's brain.

Likewise, I'm really embarrassed to admit but I had a legitimate panic attack the first time I got into a fight with some noobs from babylon world 7. My character was barely worth anything, the opponents were not at all threatening but it freaked me the fuck out to the point of having an actual physical impact.

Either of the above, I feel, is the biggest strength of haven, and the only reason it is a better game than farmville or league of legends. Turning haven into farmville removes its biggest strength to be the clone of a game others have done better.
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Re: List of game breaking balance issues

Postby wonder-ass » Sun Jan 12, 2020 6:24 am

all of this is spot on. revert rage changes and make coracles and sleds a passive buff not an active buff.
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Re: List of game breaking balance issues

Postby pawnchito » Sun Jan 12, 2020 6:59 am

Nice post with thoughful ideas.

If windsom weeds dropped highest q seeds sometimes, wouldnt botters who aren't top just bot the best seeds from eachother over and over?
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Re: List of game breaking balance issues

Postby stya » Sun Jan 12, 2020 7:05 am

Lots of important problems described here... I'd go even further on ice nerf, 1-2M lp seems way too much, especially early world.

About crops, I also think the crop q growth speed has become insane... Either remove the crop speed bonus from the realms or reduce the max q gain you can get? Crops impact industry quite a bit.

Same with metal, the q goes up way too fast (with and without meteor). Makes the world reach end game too fast.
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Re: List of game breaking balance issues

Postby SumFaggotPlayTester » Sun Jan 12, 2020 7:29 am

Lots of good points in the OP, but I'd rather see how the thread plays out instead of being present in it.

Fierce_Deity wrote:As far as death/rage goes I don't feel like world 10 mechanics are the answer. Personally, I don't think we need death in this game.


For everyone but this. You should both fear & appreciate people in this game. Them being able to estimate you being a sprucecap & smack you down like a alcoholic mother to her child is part of that, and should always be a part of this game; vice versa as well. Making rage dependent on weather or not you can be killed currently is a pain in the ass if someone is dedicated to make enough alts to either troll you or just fuck with you in general. On the flip side this is also a social game. Making friendly neighbors is great for your area, & using said friendly neighbors to lynch the non-friendly person(s) helps that.

Here is an example. I don't like person A. I also stock pile low q mats for pali-trolling said person or anyone I want to. I pal in the surrounding area around their home with 2-5 walls with no doors. I also do the same to their mine entrances on all levels. Do you think a debuff will stop me from trolling them? Because I guarantee you it would not stop me the last time I did it for shits & giggles. This can also apply to stockpiling dirt & moving it over in your knarr to some random village or person's home. Friendship pyramids might look nice but have fun digging them up.
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Re: List of game breaking balance issues

Postby vatas » Sun Jan 12, 2020 9:36 am

Coracle ping thing could be fixed by making it that Hearthling will automatically switch to it when entering water and continue along the path, and then just move it automatically back on back slot when hitting shore. You could click on the other side of the river with coracle on back slot and Hearthling would go there with that single click.
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Re: List of game breaking balance issues

Postby pawnchito » Sun Jan 12, 2020 10:14 am

Death is totally something that is a requirement for the game. It's the skin in the game. Has to be balanced to be fun though.
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