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Author Topic: Some Ammochain thoughts  (Read 2465 times)

Shadrak

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Some Ammochain thoughts
« on: April 08, 2010, 16:23 »

As of now, the Ammochain is definitely one of the most prominent 'easy' buttons the game has, and by far the most consistent. I'm not asking to nerf it (after all, I'm posting it in Discussion, not Feature Request), but if it is decided it needs a rebalance, let's think of how it could be done:

Ammochain is so powerful, because it solves multiple problems all by itself. Army of the Dead, for example, solves only the problem of giving the shotguns plasma damage, which stacks well with the Shottyman prereq effect, and it is already good. MAc solves many problems by itself at the same time:
  • It totally obliterates the reloading subgame.
  • It totally obliterates the ammo collection subgame.
  • It obliterates the inventory space management subgame (for ammo, at least).
  • The previous also opens a new tactic of shoot-scouting, which is pretty comparable to the effects of a Cateye, for example.
  • It obsoletes the chaingun, making the plasmagun the weapon of choice a no-brainer, and effectively giving you unlimited plasma damage.
  • It simplifies the modding subgame. as bulk mods become totally worthless, the WK is a prereq, and PT mods being very synergistics with the basic trait prereqs.

So, to preserve the spirit of MAc, the first function, in my opinion, must stay no matter what. I propose for consideration a way which will rebalance the 2,3,4 and 5th point:

The Ammochain allows you to stack all the 10mm ammo and plasma cells indefinitely, and chains those stacks into the equipped rapidfire weapon indefinitely

Basically, you'll still need to collect ammo (thus, offsetting the 2nd point), which will stack similarly to the backpack effect, but indefinitely (so, there'll be 2 slots filled, '10 mm ammo(x1284)' and 'plasma cells (x450)', as a corollary to 3), and channelled directly into the weapon, so 1 stays the same.

Now it makes sense to keep the chaingun (and maybe get the Juggler as 8th trait), as the 5th point signifies, for times when you don't need plasma and are forced to conserve bullets such as out-of-LoS shooting (4th point)

The presence of Chaingun also makes the modding subgame a bit more interesting, seeing as it and the plasmagun serve different functions - i'd specialise them like T3P2 chaingun for out-of-LoS scouting, and AT2P2 for plasma, maybe even considering A2TP2/A2T2P for bullet conservation.

(Concerning the Elite Diamond Badge, the introduction of gibbing will make it possible even with such modifications to MAc, I think. Though for me it is still impossible, for now :) )

That's the gist of my idea, all discussion is welcome. It will be interesting to see, at least, the point of view of fellow DoomRL players on MAc balance.


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ChaoticJosh

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Re: Some Ammochain thoughts
« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2010, 17:37 »

I think it's a universal agreement that ammochain is overpowered. I think Kornel uses a 255 bit system for inventory management, so I don't think stacks could become larger than 255. However, I think that something similar could be implemented that would help even the playing field among the traits.

It's simple, simply require that automatic weapons require no reloading. What I mean: instead of having to reload, ammochain simply does what it's name implies, that is it "chains" your ammo together. So, put simply, when your gun hits zero ammo, it doesn't need to be reloaded, it'll simply start shooting ammo straight from your inventory. This would help it retain value as a master trait, and would improve the lasting power of the chainfire ability. You wouldn't need to worry about the long reloading times of chainguns or plasma rifles, but you'd have to especially conscious of how much ammo you might be blasting recklessly. Also, it wouldn't negate the ammo collecting or conservation aspects, and you'd still need to reload after the battle's over in order to conserve inventory space. I think that would make it excellently balanced.

Now, I can't take credit for this idea, as I remember hearing about it in a similar discussion. I just can't remember who said it or where. It deserves mentioning though.
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BEEF

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Re: Some Ammochain thoughts
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2010, 20:50 »

Yeah, I've seen all sorts of suggestions about Ammochain, some more useful than others. On one end, rapid-fires draw ammo from your inventory only when you're chainfiring; then rapid-fires draw ammo from your inventory at all times; rapid-fires consume 1 ammo for every 2 shots they fire; ammo is not consumed during chainfiring; and finally Shadrak's idea here, which seems more powerful than the status quo.

Honestly, the reload time isn't a huge issue for rapid-fire weapons. Gun Kata has to do more than just give free reloads, and a plasma rifle does thrice as much damage from one clip as pistols do. Any version of Ammochain that only deals with reloading would be nearly useless as a master trait.

The big problem with Shadrak's solution is that it lets you carry around nearly unlimited BFG ammo. The other problem is that ammo often comes in great windfalls, and if you could take it all with you, it would be effectively unlimited, not to mention that it would encourage scumming archviles for former commandos. Which is a shame, because it's the best thematically. Reducing without eliminating ammo consumption is pretty unappealing thematically, but it's probably the best-balanced idea I've seen so far.


And for what it's worth, it shouldn't be too hard to make nearly unlimited stacks, if you allow for two stacks for each type of ammo. Treat the first stack like normal, but the second stack would look something like "57 stacks of 100 x 10 mm ammo."
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Frankosity

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Re: Some Ammochain thoughts
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2010, 06:06 »

Personally I'm in support of the idea of having Ammochain simply require that you not reload, eating ammo straight out of your inventory.

 If that's not good enough for a master trait, a secondary effect could be that you get a shot bonus to chainfire, giving you more shots than you would normally.
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myuzinn

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Re: Some Ammochain thoughts
« Reply #4 on: April 10, 2010, 09:32 »

I'd rather ammochain still require the player to reload, just that reloading takes no ammo from your backpack. Imagine the player lugging around a chain of trolleys full of ammo clips external to his backpack. This way the reloader trait remains useful, and ammochain is less obscenely powerful.
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