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Thread: Port Scion: suggested upgrades and fixes

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2013

    Default Port Scion: suggested upgrades and fixes

    Firstly, a bug report:

    a. As a Defiant, when merc'ing for the other side I do not get the usual 5 notoriety when returning a sourcestone.

    b. As a Defiant, I am unable to get the Ending It All (kill Ithluk) quest to complete. This thereby blocks me from being able to get the repeatable.

    Now, an analysis of the WF and suggested improvements:

    Regardless of what was originally intended, the de facto goal of the WF is to gather more sourcestone than the enemy in the shortest amount of time. Destroying enemy idol/fluxes or Ithluk can help but does not constitute a win by itself. Killing the enemy commander essentially does not happen so is not relevant to normal win conditions. Killing enemy players does not constitute a significant amount of points towards a win condition so is almost irrelevant.

    This means that the win condition of the WF has nothing to do, directly, with pvp. As a sourcestone carrier my main goal is in fact to AVOID pvp. The pvp aspect would, reasonably, be to kill enemy sourcestone carriers and to defend your own. This puts the WF in the same category as Whitefall Steppes but in a more active manner as many more sourcestones are being run and control of the bridge is relevant to sourcestone gathering speed (as opposed to defending stones you have already placed in Whitefall).

    I feel that the WF being centered around running sourcestone is a fair objective and that this concept is effective. The current conditions of it however are not satisfactory, and I will now detail how and why:

    1. Sourcestone running is not in and of itself sufficiently rewarding. There is a 5 notoriety reward and no favor or prestige. People have more incentive to go and kill an enemy player than to actually try to directly contribute to winning the match. In many of my Port Scion instances no-one even tries to run stones at all; they just fight at the bridge for the combat available there.

    2. Defending sourcestone runners is not sufficiently rewarding. Players are currently incentivized to kill as many enemy players as they can instead and this is not normally found by defending a carrier. Typically I see people helping carriers if they happen to be near them but not actively guarding them (I know, I run stones a lot).

    3. Completing Port Scion quests is, under current circumstances, over-incentivized compared to actually trying to win. You will get far more notoriety by completing quests repeatedly than actually trying to help your team win. Part of this problem is that completing the quests doesn't help your team win - the solution may be instead to make completing quests matter more (right now the reinforcements have very little value other than giving the other team something to kill so that THEY can get more notoriety).

    4. It needs to be said that many Port Scion battles result in a huge fight at the bridge with very little else happening. This is less to do with the amount of favor and prestige that the combatants get than the fact that it is a very visible target and that most combatants, lacking strategic thinking, are going to gravitate towards it.


    Port Scion suffers from a problem that Conquest also has: it requires a team leader to function effectively and in pickup games there typically isn't one. As a result it devolves into general fighting and the win conditions are ignored; this is normal human warfare behavior and should be expected. Therefore the solution is to alter the structure under the win condition to be easier to accomplish without a leader and also to promote more pvp fighting around objectives that matter. Solutions below:

    1. Incentivize sourcestone running. Increase notoriety rewards to 25 per stone run and give a block favor/prestige reward equal to three kills. You probably had to avoid getting killed three times and/or give up killing three enemies to get the stone home so it's fair.

    2. Alter the behavior of quest reward guards. Instead of them fairly uselessly running around and attacking enemy players and npcs, instead have them station at key points along the stone running path of that team. This means that completing quests will directly assist stone runners in making it easier for them to get stones home. That means questers are directly helping to protect stone runners, which alleviates the problem with stone runners not being protected. Over time the defense could become pretty significant which would lead to enemy players actively hunting questers, something which doesn't really happen at the this time.

    3. Remove the bridge objective. It's too big a target for a fight that detracts from the point of the game. We don't need it, either. You can mount in Port Scion so it's easy to get back to the church or southern stone.

    Under this new set of circumstances you can expect the following behavior:

    a. More people actively trying to run stones.
    b. "Support" players actually helping support the win conditions.
    c. Lacking the bridge objective people will gravitate to enemy players elsewhere which will naturally be enemy stone runners and questers. This will in turn make it more likely that players on a team will defend stone runners themselves because they'll be where they expect, or find, the enemy to be.
    d. Lacking the bridge objective more people will be hitting the planar idols and fluxes, and since they'll be in the church Ithluk will be hit more. This would be good.

    I believe strongly you will find this will improve Port Scion considerably. As you may be aware wait times in the 50-59 bracket(s) can be up to four hours and I think they will reduce if more people want to play it.
    Last edited by Sanhar; 11-25-2013 at 02:33 PM.

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