Category: Balance

Map Awarness

(Note: The following is mostly relevant mainly to PvP maps. In a Player vs. Environment situation, you can be sure the enemies won’t exploit every advantage and will perform in a fairly predictable pattern, in turn letting more varied landscapes thrive. In PvE, the world exists as a stage for the play of the characters life. In PvP, the world is merely the arena one choose to kill or die in.)

Alright, the last in this weeks balance set and we’ll be taking a look at maps. This can be the make-or-break moment for any game, as playing on unfavorable 1-sided maps can lead to bad games and lost battles just because the enemy spawned on the ‘right’ side. There are two main kind of maps, symmetrical and asymmetrical, and these are what we’ll covering today. This will probably be a short one, just because of the massive amount of variance between games. You wouldn’t play a game of Starcraft II on a map that was designed for Team Fortress 2, and you would probably be pretty bored playing a Team Fortress 2 map on a massive sprawling map were engagements are few and far between. Before we get into the two main categories, let’s cover the basics.

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Forging Balance

Now then, as I promised, today’s post is on weapons in gaming and the aspects of balance for them. Note these are equip-able items not characters that use weapons. We’re just talking about the thing that (usually) goes in the hand(s), be it sword, mace, shovel, or what have you. Mostly we’re going to cover the variety of types weapons come in and how they all relate, and can have a bit of uniqueness to make each weapon fun to use. Right then, let’s just jump straight in with the weapon types themselves!

Weapon Types:
This is the most obvious and basic breakdown in weapon diversity. Usually there will be a fairly large amount to chose from, but the choice will be fairly unimportant. I’m talking basics like Two-Handed Sword/Mace/Axe, when which of those three you pick is mostly for flavor. Sometimes you have other things play in, like Race X has a higher damage threshold when wielding an axe, so you see players going for that, but ultimately it’s down to what you prefer (Or in some sad cases, which ever animation is least terrible).  What it boils down to is 1-hand slashing, 1-hand blunt, 2-hand variants of the same thing, and then, if you’re lucky, piercing damage (usually a bow), with the actual weapons all slotting into One of those 5 categories.
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Right then. I know it’s a day late, but I’m hoping not a dollar short. It’s that bloody 12 hour car ride, I thought today was Tuesday. Well… whoops. Yes, tomorrow will be a regularly scheduled blog post, and of the normal variety. Today’s will be more of a discussion piece, hopefully getting some gears turning as you read. Back to back posts! I must be losing it to put myself through that. Anyways, on with the show.

Today is going to be a fun one, since this is something that can be found in virtually every game ever. That’s right, items! Various flavors and forms, items are the quintessential backbone of certain types of games, often being both the reward and means to an end. In order to make sure this post actually ends sometime this century, we’ll be mostly talking about items like potions and elixirs, and looking at how they can be balanced for the game in question with a variety of unique and engaging ways. Tomorrow will be the other side of the item world: weapons. For now, let’s get started with the most common potion variant: defensive.
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