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Thread: The Premade vs. Pug Conundrum

  1. #1
    Ascendant Puzzlebox's Avatar
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    Default The Premade vs. Pug Conundrum

    Trion,

    I've been watching you. I know that sounds creepy, but it's true. I have watched you try and cater to the hardcore, the casual, and everything inbetween. It's respectable. You are trying to please your entire customer base, and I have always appreciated your earnestness in response and trying to find the best solution to keep everyone happy.

    However.

    I have also watched you try to straddle the middle ground between premades and pugs, and how there are compelling arguments for both sides and no easy solution to solve the issue.

    What is the issue?
    That everyone pays $15 equally and that no one is entitled over the other. That said. Solo-queuers have every right to be able to play in a pug environment and have fun. There should be a pool for people who just want to blow some steam and just kill a few rednames for thirty minutes before doing something else. At the same time, trying to create such an environment severely impedes your other demographic, premaders. They are suffering from horrible queue times and skewed algorithms in an attempt to keep the solo base happy.

    Trying to straddle the middle is creating poor design decisions that is stripping the veneer of polish in the game, and is just making the 'system' more convoluted than it should be.

    An example:

    The current flow of the PvP aspect of this game is counter-intuitive and convoluted. And it's tiring. There is no efficient, or painless way to consume the content with people I like to play with without there being a hassle involved. For example, I want to queue with some of my buddies. Well, queues are slow. So we split into partners or threes. We 3-2-1 time queue (yes, I admit it. Don't worry we don't ever even seen each other anyway.). But a PvP Rift was spawned by the opposing faction.

    Crap.

    What do we do? Do we hop out of our queue and group up and form a raid with more guildies to combat the other guild running the rift in a massive World PvP clash? The type of dynamic gameplay that Trion has espoused as a core fundamental to the game since day one?

    Or do we stick as multiple groups and try out luck with manually cross-healing and cleansing. What about marking targets, or target @mark 1 assist macros? It's going to be a mess against a fully formed 20-man raid.

    So we drop our queues and hop together into a big raid. Or we just group up as 5 and try out luck against bigger numbers with a few randoms that happened to be in the area. We win or lose. Now what do we do?

    Crap.

    Now we have to figure out how we're splitting up into separate groups. We can't even queue as a 5-man raid so we have to disband and reform. Who's going with whom? Okay, we have everything figured out.

    3-2-1 Click Que-oh wait another PvP rift spawned.

    Crap.

    It's tiring, Trion. It's a pain in the ***. It's limiting the social aspect of the game when you really have to be that picky and choosy about who you play with and are constantly segregated from other players you like to play with all in the name of non-absurd queue times.

    An Argument:

    I think Trion has got it wrong, as far as mentality. They are currently balancing around the LCD as the status-quo and baseline of PvP play. All of these horrendous changes are balanced around that. Like ParaChamps, who are monstrous with a pocket healer and pedestrian without. Or healing, which has no true counter unless at a premade level.

    But why is Trion balancing around and developing around the solo-queue level? Why can't they instead work on the fundamentals that would uplift pug play to the premade level?

    These are the advantages premades generally enjoy over pugs:
    1) Voice Communication
    2) Sensible marked targets
    3) Focus Fire

    (I am not going to go into team comps and healers, because I don't believe there is a solution to that)

    So why can't Trion work on improving the PvP system and UI to bring those three advantages to the masses?

    Here are my suggestions:

    1) Create a flexible VoIP system.
    Easily toggleable mute/ignore/volume controls. That said, a person who is trying to play in relative peace with music on can do so, but at the same time, have the option to turn everything back up if the game starts to get intense and things have to be coordinated. Ignore/Mute functions have to be solid to prevent ear-sodomizers.

    2) Flexible and improved marking system.
    I do not like my ability to recognize and neutralize target is based in part by the random Raid Leader who does not mark and does not say a word. I also hate having massive epeen contests with other premade leaders as to who should have lead and who should be marked. (One premade I know doesn't mark their healers, but marks their warriors. I'm the complete opposite).

    A team's healers should be auto-marked and visible to only teammates. This will throw healers a bone and let pug players know visibly that their source of healers is getting trained on by 2 sins and 3 parachamps. It doesn't have to be a number, but can be a heal icon similar to what is used to determine a player's role.

    Marking system should be multi-tierd. In that a raid leader has a distinctive set of marks that he can use at his own discretion, visible to the entire raid. At the same time, the personal individual should have a client side set of distinctive marks that he can use at his own discretion. This way, I can mark my own targets if a Raid Leader is being a vegetable. I can keep personal marks on my pocket healers without tying up the numbers 6,7,8.

    Oh, and Raid Leader should be vote-demotable and another one vote-promotable.

    3) Raid Warnings and Announcements and Focus Fire

    Along the action bar pane should be a brand new set of functions, all hotkeyable. The first row would be common raid warnings that would typically be called out in vent but cannot really be typed out in the heat of the moment.

    "Player Name is being focused!"
    "Focus Mark 1!"
    "Retreat!"
    etc.

    The second row of buttons should be easily hotkeyable "target @mark 1/2/3/4/5/6" buttons. This will give keyboard turners and clickers an option to be able to easily click the right target, as well as give the mouse-movers and hotkeyers a more accessible means of setting up appropriate targetting macros without actually having to use macroes.

    Conclusion:
    These, and probably other, improvements and additions to the PvP UI would allow for more coordinated play in a solo-pug level, while also giving means for the individual to opt out if he cannot be bothered. It gives them similar tools to what premaders enjoy, and would raise the competition between pugs and premade.

    Let us balance around high-level coordinated play, instead of balancing around the 'target closest target I see and spamspamspamspam" mentality of solo-queueing.
    r40 puzzlybox <rise of mayhem> whoo whoo
    r40 pizzabox wheeeeeeeee

    puzzlebox + apoth = <3 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lL4L4Uv5rf0

  2. #2
    Champion of Telara Morituri's Avatar
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    You had me in the beginning but then you got to the part where you're disadvantaged for pvp rifts b/c you're choosing to bypass the premade queues by soloing or double queuing. You almost grasped the idea of why solo queues queue as they do but then you went & tried to train them to play it your way.

    While I like a little organization in my pugs, listening to some pubescent youth yelling in VOIP b/c he overextended & isn't getting heals is not the way I want to enjoy warfronts. Listening to music is much more relaxing.

    I can agree with the raid warnings. It's a useful feature. AS far as the marking system, I agree with the demote a raid leader option but there's now ay in hell the healers are going to agree to getting auto-marked. In their defense, it's unfair.

    Cudos for a couple things. Try again on the others, but that's just my opinion.

  3. #3
    Ascendant Puzzlebox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morituri View Post
    You had me in the beginning but then you got to the part where you're disadvantaged for pvp rifts b/c you're choosing to bypass the premade queues by soloing or double queuing. You almost grasped the idea of why solo queues queue as they do but then you went & tried to train them to play it your way.

    While I like a little organization in my pugs, listening to some pubescent youth yelling in VOIP b/c he overextended & isn't getting heals is not the way I want to enjoy warfronts. Listening to music is much more relaxing.

    I can agree with the raid warnings. It's a useful feature. AS far as the marking system, I agree with the demote a raid leader option but there's now ay in hell the healers are going to agree to getting auto-marked. In their defense, it's unfair.

    Cudos for a couple things. Try again on the others, but that's just my opinion.
    Auto-marked as in. My teammate's healer's are auto-marked. The other team can't see it. That way, it's more noticeable if they're getting punched in the face by five people, they get help.
    r40 puzzlybox <rise of mayhem> whoo whoo
    r40 pizzabox wheeeeeeeee

    puzzlebox + apoth = <3 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lL4L4Uv5rf0

  4. #4
    Champion of Telara Morituri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Puzzlebox View Post
    Auto-marked as in. My teammate's healer's are auto-marked. The other team can't see it. That way, it's more noticeable if they're getting punched in the face by five people, they get help.

    Ah OK; that makes sense. I'd go for that.

  5. #5
    Shield of Telara
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    Long post is long. Can I get cliffs? (Yes, A.D.D.)

    Is OP asking for any of the following?
    -Forcing solo players and group queues together?
    -Extra favor over solo queues?
    -Some other additional premade advantage?

  6. #6
    Ascendant Puzzlebox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morituri View Post
    Ah OK; that makes sense. I'd go for that.
    It's just another thing that widens the gap between premades and pugs. Pug healers get NO help. They get blown up by 5 people looking at em funny. Whereas premade healers seem like they're immortal because they're getting peels, fearbombs on the opposing assist train, and spot heals from other Clerics.

    And people wonder why heals are so sparse in a pug setting.
    r40 puzzlybox <rise of mayhem> whoo whoo
    r40 pizzabox wheeeeeeeee

    puzzlebox + apoth = <3 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lL4L4Uv5rf0

  7. #7
    Rift Disciple Tikay's Avatar
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    I uderstand those that run premades could think that VoIP would help pugs, but it won't change the fact that only a few would listen to someone they don't know.

    I choose to pug, not to get "orders" or having my hand held when fighting.
    Even if there was a pug vs pug "guarantee" and it only gave half of the normal favor/prestige, I'ld opt that any time of the day.
    What I find fun about pug vs pug, is that it gives funny situations, makes you actually think for yourself where you are needed, what the best target would be, and so on.

    An example I like to use is, you assume your best position is on the bridge because it's under attack.
    Just before you get there, you see 2 teammates running around the corner you were going too with low'ish health.
    What will you do, not knowing what's on the other side?
    - Will you be just stand there and wait for something to come, being "stunned" by your teammates their actions
    - Will you run away together with them, acknowledging their "fear"
    - Will your curiosity be too big to not look around the corner, ignoring the teammates their actions
    I've had this plenty of times, and it gives me more thrills than anything, even though I mostly just keep going towards the corner, nerf my curiousity.

    There's no "regroup" "retreat" "not safe to go there with just a few" "attack person X" "defend targetX" commands, and I don't want them to be there.
    I've played premades (mates) for a long time in another game, and it got soooo boring I hardly teamed up with them anymore. And if I did, I just stood somewhere with a pugger and try to handle what we were getting thrown at.
    The most fun I had over ~6 years in the wf was while I was "pugging".
    For me, premade was acting as if I was a npc, while pugging made me do whatever I wanted.

    I do understand that people like to play premades, but pleas understand that there are people that don't, even if it's a "premade feeling".
    Don't take that feeling away from those who dislike premades.

    (sry for english, kinda late *yawn*)
    Tikay lvl 50 mage - Fontana lvl 50 rogue

  8. #8
    Champion of Telara Morituri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tikay View Post
    Even if there was a pug vs pug "guarantee" and it only gave half of the normal favor/prestige, I'ld opt that any time of the day.
    Nice post but hey, let's not get carried away.
    Last edited by Morituri; 08-07-2011 at 03:51 PM.

  9. #9
    Ascendant Tigruz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fatalflaw View Post
    Long post is long. Can I get cliffs? (Yes, A.D.D.)

    Is OP asking for any of the following?
    -Forcing solo players and group queues together?
    -Extra favor over solo queues?
    -Some other additional premade advantage?
    Lol none of those...read it SLOWLY for yourself :P

    But I like most of those ideas OP. The VOIP or whatever may get out of hand as per the example the posted after you stated. Sometimes things get out of hand even in chat.

    Good ideas, I hope Trion implements some type of system like you have stated some day.
    <Retired>

  10. #10
    Prophet of Telara
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    Allow me to repost my thoughts on this topic from another thread

    Quote Originally Posted by liho1eye
    Or they could separate premade and PUGs entirely and allow prestige gain beyond r6 only in premade queue . Since PUGs only trying to have fun, then it wouldn't matter for them. And it would make sense since one cannot expect to get a relic from a t2 dungeon, then why would people get r8 gear running low-end PvP?
    -- Trollhammer@Molinar

  11. #11
    Rift Disciple Tikay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morituri View Post
    Nice post but hey, let's not get carried away.
    Thanks And it wasn't ment as something every pugger would do, but as something I'ld do in a heartbeat.
    Tikay lvl 50 mage - Fontana lvl 50 rogue

  12. #12
    Rift Master -Sansa-'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by liho1eye View Post
    Allow me to repost my thoughts on this topic from another thread
    I'd be for this solution. I'm like Tikay, I enjoy pugs because they're unpredictable and you're forced to think for yourself. If the group "gels", with everyone on the same page but still thinking for themselves, that's icing on the cake. I'm not against team work, as we still have to pull together to complete an objective, but being told what to do and when just doesn't suit my play style. I suspect most puggers feel the same way; it's not that can't join groups to form premades - it's that we don't want to.

  13. #13
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    The simple fact is that the majority of people pug, and the game has all the needed functionality to have an enjoyable somewhat organized pug vs pug battle. The only thing that needs to change is to stop premades from playing against pugs. Premade vs pug is creating a major imbalance in the game that is causing the majority of players to have a miserable experience in wfs. Voip and the other ideas you suggested will not take a disorganized rabble of mismatched classes/specs and turn them into a well oiled machine to stand against premades.

  14. #14
    Shadowlander
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yassha View Post
    The simple fact is that the majority of people pug, and the game has all the needed functionality to have an enjoyable somewhat organized pug vs pug battle. The only thing that needs to change is to stop premades from playing against pugs. Premade vs pug is creating a major imbalance in the game that is causing the majority of players to have a miserable experience in wfs. Voip and the other ideas you suggested will not take a disorganized rabble of mismatched classes/specs and turn them into a well oiled machine to stand against premades.
    Best topic string on pvp... Pay attention Trion. Your money comes from casual gamers not the ones who spend all day every day doing whatever it takes to "win." until you charge based on time played, this will not change. Fix wf and do it quickly. Those of us who want challenging pvp are becoming disenchanted with the pre made **** festival you created.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by liho1eye View Post
    Allow me to repost my thoughts on this topic from another thread
    I agree with this part of your post: "they could separate premade and PUGs entirely".

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