Thread: A Thought
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October 31st, 2013, 16:10
Originally Posted by ChienAboyeur View Post
If reasonable is doing this that cant work, then it is reasonable.

It cant work in video gaming. Video games are played through proxies (avatars)
Such it is hard to determine when players of different classes/avatars… are of equal skill.

Reciprocally, two avatars etc could be balanced but one avatar requiring more skills than another. Therefore imbalance must be introduce in order to make up for the higher skill requirement.

The impossibility to balance a game regardless of the players'skill, that is providing a ruleset hanging on by itself follows.

Playing through avatar adds a layer hard to manage and makes balancing an endless, impossible to fulfill promise.

Balancing toward the best is going to be the norm for any game that comes with a professional scene. Not because the best allows balancing, they do not. But because they are potentially a source of revenues.
What matters in this configuration is that players who are involved in a paid scheme (watching them play makes money) delivers a show that spurs sales.
If for any reason, one avatar set is not supported by a talented pool of players, leading that avatar set to be under-represented in tournament resluts, that could lead to a decrease in sales as potential buyers wanting to play that avatar set are not going to play it. Hence the game must be imbalanced toward that particular avatar set to boost sales.
You make some good points. Let me see that I understand them properly…

1. It is hard to determine when players are of equal skill.

2. Having to press more buttons to deal the same amount of damage over the same amount of time is deserving of extra damage (the imbalance you speak of) to compensate for the extra keystrokes the player is required to memorise, regardless of DPS?

3. True balance is impossible without mirror match.

4. When you say developers balance "toward" the best you mean in their favour? Making the popular avatars, or avatars used by popular players, overpowered in order to sell more games?


1, 3. I agree. Good balance is very hard, especially with a diverse selection of heroes/skills.
Eg. Starcraft did a great job but the balancing could go on forever without being "perfect". Same with World of warcraft which has very popular PvP.

4. Hearsay? Can you give me an example?
Eg. I don't think World of Warcraft or Starcraft sold many extra copies because of one class being overpowered. The nerf-stick is always looming overhead.

2. I suppose this depends on what utility the extra buttons add to the combo.

eg. One player1 might do 100 damage with 2 spells requiring 6 seconds total time to perform, while player2 does 100 damage with 3 spells over 6 seconds time. Should the player2 do extra damage because he had to use a third spell? How much extra damage? What if the third spell had a utility mechanic, such as a root, slow, snare, stun, etc. In this case surely his damage should be lowered to compensate for the extra time this utility gives him to cast a fourth spell while player1 is disabled?

The beginning of game balancing starts on paper. It's implemented, tested internally and then released to the players. But it is not the new player who discovers imbalance that the developers have overlooked; it's the most experienced, the "best" players. It's not until you have mastered all the classes that you can really compare them accurately. The new player does not understand why he lost beyond that he does not understand the game! Therefore, the best post-release balance discussions will always come from the top players.

I think while a lot of what you say is true it doesn't make what I say any less true but exists happily alongside my points?

edit, PS: I think maybe the miscommunication here is reflexes vs experience as being the "best"… Who is better at football; the star player or the coach? Like, one player is master of FIFA 2014 and the other Football Manager 2014… Who is better at Soccer? Anyway, It's very late. I must sleep. I'll be back later on tomorrow.
Last edited by SirJames; October 31st, 2013 at 16:25.
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