cooldown vs. charge and other forms of abilities

Posted: //
April 28, 2015, 8:03 p.m.

so remembering the stream i got thinking about the abilities with very low cooldown, specificly the blink-warp on the light corvette.
you could see the skill recharge very quickly and it could be "spammed" to get around rather fast, which of course is needed because the ship is very fragile.
while we still had no chance to play the game, i would still like to propose an alternate way of how abilities work.
i have yet to see an ability in dreadnought that works with charges.
i initially thought that the constant spamming might be a little bit too much, so i thought about giving that ability a certain amount of charges that could be burnt in quick succession.
lets say you have 5-7 charges on the blink-warp and one charge regenerates every 12-15 seconds.

don't get me wrong, i don't mean that they should change the ability, as i have no reference from playing the actual game, i really have no idea if the cooldown is fine that way. i just took it as an example of what i mean.
having charges gives you some more options on how to use abilities. do you keep the charges to burst them all out at once, do you use them regularily or do you just keep 1-2 charges and use everything that goes above that counter.
i also don't know if that concept of abilities would make sense in dreadnought, it just came to mind and i wanted to share the thought ;D

nonetheless i would still be interested to see different ways of how abilities work. for example an aoe targeting ability, given that we have a third person perspective and it's a 3d environment it would not come as easy as in mobas etc. but it would be interesting.

another interesting concept is one of having a passive ability which can then be activated. while the ability cools down you lose the passive effect.

i'm a little torn on channeling abilities in dreadnought. it could be awesome to land a charged lasershot over some distance but it also exposes you as a target (which is the natural effect of channeling abilities). but i'm not sure if it would fit the style that the devs want the game to have.

time you enjoy wasting, is no wasted time

Posted: //
April 29, 2015, 5:31 a.m.

Updated //
April 29, 2015, 5:32 a.m.

I see what your getting at but at this stage (having not played it yet) I would feel very dubious about limiting cool downs, especially when it's a fundamental part of the ships strengths.

I think using ability charges work better on abilities that are a little OP, for example if we could send a scanner probe into an area of the map the probe could give us a few seconds visibility in that area, only being able to do it twice means you need to think about it.

When you start messing about with ships unique abilities then every ship needs to be rebalanced.

Detected three minor impacts across the bow, No damage registered, Probably just debris, Sir.

Posted: //
April 29, 2015, 9:09 a.m.

yea that's why i said i'm only using it as an example :D
maybe they even have some abilities with charge allready in design, who knows

time you enjoy wasting, is no wasted time

Posted: //
April 29, 2015, 9:52 a.m.

I like the idea of having charges on abilities like the warps. Even being able to hold two charges you'd be able to warp into battle and warp out if needed instead of having to decide "Do I want to warp in and take damage leaving or take damage coming in and warp out?" I know this isn't that big a deal with the Corvettes since the cooldown is so short but maybe with the Dreadnoughts? This would also give the Dreadnoughts more maneuverability around the map. Players could also decide to go completely offensive and double warp into battle or defensively to double warp out.

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Posted: //
May 1, 2015, 9:47 a.m.

I really like Chips idea of multiple charges on one ability, slightly increase the CD but it can hold 2 charges.

I'm just not really keen on limited charges unless it's for scouting or something that every ship class can use.

Detected three minor impacts across the bow, No damage registered, Probably just debris, Sir.

Posted: //
May 1, 2015, 12:39 p.m.

well that's actually what i meant when i described it, maybe i was not clear enough, sorry.
ofc the charges get recharged with an internal cooldown!

time you enjoy wasting, is no wasted time

Posted: //
May 2, 2015, 9:32 a.m.

I like the idea of charges. I hope that Yager's guys will take in consideration (if they did not think about it by themself) this idea.

Posted: //
May 6, 2015, 3:58 a.m.

Uhm actually...

Our first prototype on abilities worked with charges. You had a certain amount from the start and you could only replenish then on certain points on the map or through other abilities (e.g. the support could drop a recharge station or something like that).
But - it does not have worked out. Even if we take the suggestions of an internal recharge timer into consideration I'm not sure that this will solve the problems.

The main issue is a balancing issue. If you have a bunch of chargers you could potentially use them all in short succession. For a damage ability, this would mean that you have the damage according to this all at once" uses. If you can kill half of the ships simply by hitting an ability button repeatedly no one is happy. And on the other hand if you optimize the abilities for this kind of use you might feel the urge to always use up all your charges since a single charge simply doesn't deal enough damage.

I just picked a damage ability as an example since it's easier to get my point across. You have similar issues with abilities like a blink that would than in extensive usage provide you an hug distance bonus, so you would need to tune for that and might therefore weaken each single use.

You could of cause work around that by adding a cooldown between the charge uses. But then you might run into the same problem you mentioned with the cooldown timer in the first place. In addition you'll end up with a charge timer, a charger number and a recharge timer for each of the 4 abilities. That would be (in a worst case) 12 values you need to keep track of in order to use your abilities effectively. Communicating all these information on the HUD in a non intrusive way would be... interesting =)
You have to admit that one cooldown between each use is much more straight forward and easy to keep track of and even more important: easy to plan with.

I definitely get your point. Using something like a blink all the time to travel around the map is something you might be able to abuse. But from my perspective it would be easier to tackle these issues on an individual basis (e.g. tweaking cooldown, modifying ship speed, make the blink more visible for enemies, etc.) instead of putting more complexity to the core system.

Stefan "Stiefel" Damberg
Engineer, YAGER

Posted: //
May 6, 2015, 10:09 a.m.

Touché Stiefel

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Posted: //
May 6, 2015, 9:34 p.m.

i think it would be an interesting idea to allow certain support ships the ability to create temporary warp fields that allies could jump through for a short time. Kind of like a group warp to surprise or ambush an enemy

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