Event & Questpack longevity suggestions

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by destroyerarcher, Sep 22, 2022.

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  1. destroyerarcher

    destroyerarcher Champion

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    In the original AoEO, there were no large-scale seasonal events beyond selling a few vanity store items. Of course, this changed with Project Celeste, where events are now a major cornerstone of progression and new content. Event gear often provide unique and powerful stats that significantly alter how you play to freshen up the gameplay loop of questing. That being said, the idea of event fatigue is an idea I always thought would eventually occur for many players, and given how people react to many of the summer gear items, I think especially for the Summer event, people have gotten fatigued over the current system. Personally, in the most recent Summer event, I farmed a decent amount, enough to use up all my 21 cheap crafts, and still am a bit far away from getting all the gear released THAT YEAR I personally would like to use, let alone the gear from previous years.

    Thus, I have some ideas that could help with ensuring events can last without burning off the playerbase and avoiding continual gear creep. Gear ideas are finite, and if half or more of all new gear in a given year are added in these limited time events, it leaves a bad taste for many players. While I do have some ideas about completely removing events and integrating their gear into the year-long game economy, those will have to wait for another time, as that is an even more complex topic.

    Event System Suggestions:

    My first idea may be controversial, but I think that each event should stop receiving new gear for that event when it has around 20-25 unique gear pieces. I see the sentiment around the community that especially Summer gear from the past two years is disappointing, and I wonder if part of that is because they simply are fatigued from the sheer quantity of gear added per summer event.

    To curb people getting fatigued from too many gear items available per event, setting a limit for the amount of new gear added specifically for events helps curb this fatigue. New players who see that their hypothetical build needs multiple event gear when that event is nowhere close to rotating also get frustrating, and so limiting new gear

    One exception for no more event gear is with new gear types, so that specific gear type can get a regen, ignore armor, or some other event-related stat.

    When events run, the gear offered for materials should be the 4-5 most in demand items, as they would encourage earning the event materials. Given the sheer amount of event gear by that point and how new players often look for unique event gear, I doubt that they will become worthless for any player outside the top 10.

    In a similar fashion, event gear being sold for event points should all cost the same amount of points within an event - let perceived value decide the choice. You may intend an item to be used in a certain manner, but given the nature of looter and buildcrafting games, it is not rare for someone to devise a unique, powerful usage of an item originally intended for one unit. There could be 5-10 gear items that return through the store, if having gear be unavailable and the list be tidy is of utmost importance. Otherwise, I think adding every event gear not available for event materials to the event store during an event would be best.

    The reason I think event gear should not be too out of reach and the quantity kept in check is because when compared with other horizontally focused progression systems in PvE looters, the only one that personally comes to mind is Destiny 2. Event systems similar to the ones in AoEO are what I personally have primarily encountered in vertical progression titles, where the goal is getting stronger directly over the decision on gear being only focused on what stat will suit your build better. The average time to get new event gear in AoEO averages around two or three hours, but with many returning gear, the grind often goes beyond that.
    The lengthiest grind for an event item in AoEO is Ra’s Hammer, at 60k summer points which likely would take the average player 30 or so hours to earn a single stat-altering item in an event that is limited time.
    In addition, the average amount of gear added per year that the average player can feasibly achieve compared with the amount of gear added in events disproportionally favors the events. The time after 2021’s Summer event and 2022’s summer event is quite a significant contrast - while 9! new event gear were added in total across 2021 Halloween, Winter, and 2022 Summer, a measly two permanent gear were added that are available all-year long, Ashoka’s Golden Gorget and Esfandiyar’s Divine Breastplate.
    In contrast, Destiny 2, another horizontally focused looter with seasonal events with unique gear, only introduces 1 new unique piece of gear each event, which usually only take around 15 minutes to get any copy of at all with the caveat of random rolls, and the amount of new gear added almost permanently each three months generally totals around 20. As a result, events in Destiny 2 does not run into the same problem of having the majority of new gear locked behind a one-month event. Flooding each event with gear that requires a relatively lengthy grind resembles more of an event found in a looter with linear vertical progression than a system that compliments a game with a predominantly horizontal gear system, and is likely why many players, new and old, get frustrated with them.

    To ensure the longevity of event gear, they should have balance passes on underpowered and overpowered event gear to make them all appealing. Some event gear, such as the Spear of the Piercing Frost are commonly considered by the community to overall overperform for units in tough legendary quests. In contrast, certain gear, such as Ishtar’s Sword and Ashur’s Arrows, are considered to be generally underperforming by the majority of long-term players.
    The most important point of balancing them is that they are strong enough to be chosen for varying sorts of quests without choking other options in the same slot.
    If no new event gear is added, then there should be a craftable recipe for one new event gear for summer and halloween before production of new event gear ideas ends. This would give a reason to keep playing events in the long run, even when no new event gear is added, as players will keep crafting that specific gear in the chase for the perfect roll. Instead, new consumable recipes could be added for each event, or every other event, if there is a need for new loot in events, as players will indeed use consumables on quests, despite the meme about consumables being bad.

    EDIT:
    Another point that must be considered is how and why events in other games are done the way they are. In many other online games, seasonal events are hardly given frequent content patches, they generally only receive minor patches to the playable event content with the bulk of new things added to events being cosmetics. Events are often used as a way of bridging lulls in content without much dev time necessary and earning more revenue through event themed skins or higher retention. Project Celeste is one of the very few games that does not just put in a lot of effort for new content in one event every year, but all three. Now players have the expectation of constant new content for events, which likely would have served the game better in the long term if the effort was directed towards rounding out deficiencies in gameplay variety with new quests, notably the overall lack of new repeatable and elite quests or minigames of varying gameplay loops.

    On discord, I heard Jeinx say that he just throws all the gear he believes is niche onto the Summer Event. I think that's a poor way of handling niche gear as there are infinitely better ways to handle them (add them to the celeste pool with a lower droprate, add crafting recipes for them, special acquisition from clearing underplayed quests, and more!) because not only does adding every niche gear item in the summer event just bloat the gear list, it also means people who simply like trying unique builds are punished when the players who play the event can barely get enough gear for themselves, let alone for others, and also angers players looking for a more universal item in the process. A lose-lose situation in the long term, fueled by obsession over events.



    Celeste Quest Pack Longevity:

    Another thing I’ve noticed is that many questpacks have an uneven distribution on how many players engage with the quests offered.
    For a start, the rewards from the "kill bosses" global quest available in those regions could have their rewards buffed. The easier ones to achieve could have it increased to 30 while the ones with multiple different bosses such as Lodi and Urd could reward 50, or even more, advanced epic materials instead. Questpacks without a quest that works on their bosses, could receive a global quest for that purpose.
    There could also be unique gear rewards added to that quest pack that can be earned multiple times to encourage players to come back to quests they may have neglected or never played before. How this can be implemented could be done in multiple ways:
    The first is making each celeste questpack have unique chests that have a chance of awarding that unique legendary. Thanks to the new drop table revamps, the rates can be tuned in a way that would suit how generally useful the item can be.
    A second method I thought of is taking a page from events, and making each legendary quest in a given questpack award a questpack specific material in quantities based on its difficulty. After earning enough quest materials, just like in seasonal events, they can be handed in a quest that would award the item.
    The third method is actually something that PF2K mentioned as an original concept for the Socrates questpack. There would be a repeatable quest that requires completing all elite/legendary quests in the questpack and after completing all those quests, you would get the mentioned item. Of course, there is nothing that necessitates the Socrates pack must have a training time wall as its unique repeatable legendary, so another gear idea could be used instead.

    Also, here are some gear ideas that could be used with the idea of unique repeatable questline gear, and my reasoning for their balancing. Of course, the names and stats can be altered, but the stat ideas can provide a springboard for future development.

    Celeste Quest Pack Gear Ideas:

    Athens, Greek Revolt:
    Athena’s Long Arm - Throwing Arm
    +43.87% Damage
    +29.85% Infantry Bonus Damage

    Interestingly there is currently no throwing arm that specializes specifically for other units. An infantry bonus throwing arm would make throwing arm units excel more against infantry units, at the cost of dealing less damage against opposing siege, cavalry, and buildings, along with a 8% range loss compared with Elephant Arm.

    Tarsos:

    Cyrus’ Plated Light Spear - Light Spear
    +45.54% Damage
    +36.260% Pierce Armor
    +36.260% Crush Armor

    A counterpart of Light Spear of the King that focuses more on absorbing ranged damage. Because it faces fierce competition with Zahhak and Set’s Spear, the piece armor and crush is high to make it very effective against those damage types.

    Babylon:

    Breastplate of Zu - Medium Armor
    +64.61% Health
    +33.41% Pierce Armor

    Medium armor currently lack an option that specializes against pierce damage, so having a medium armor that handles pierce armor well would be welcomed.


    Well of Urd:

    Odin’s Far Seeing Sails - Ship Accessory
    +50.2% Line of Sight

    A ship accessory providing LoS would counteract the weakness of range builds on boats not seeing deep inside enemy bases. There is an opportunity cost for this, you get the option of seeing the enemy TC buried deep in an island but lose the pop effective hadad's hull or cost effective speedy ashur rudder, but would still be worth the tradeoff on occasion.

    Rhakotis:

    Bast’s Lion-Hilted Khopesh - Sword
    +48.4% Health
    +12.56% Pierce Armor
    +8.34% Damage

    A very solid tanking option for sword units at the cost of damage. The epic variant has a noticeable gap between an average level 35 and the nigh unfarmable level 38 version. By having a legendary version of Bast’s Bloodletter, not only is there a significant competitor for Tiberius easily accessible, but it can get a better role much more easily.

    Lodi:

    Comontorios’ Bloodied Cleaver - Great Axe
    +63.12% Damage
    +12.55% Speed

    A combination of speed and damage that accelerates axe units! Of course, to gain all that speed, a notable amount of damage is lost, making Amun’s still an excellent option for sheer damage.

    City of Rome:

    Crassus’ Banner of the Scorpion - Banner
    +35.5% Melee-Infantry Armor
    +35.5% Pierce Armor
    +35.5% Melee-Cavalry Armor

    Whereas Pompey and Caesar banner focus on mixing health with damage and speed respectively, this banner would focus purely on armor instead, synergizing better with regen. Of course, sometimes the damage or speed is preferred over raw survivability.

    Zabol:

    Garshasp’s Sturdy Plating - Armor Plating
    +64.61% Health
    +33.41% Melee-Infantry Armor

    A compromise between the Legion Warlord and Golden Runic plating that provides a fair amount of both health and infantry armor.

    Athens, Aiding Socrates:

    Socrates' Swift Spokes - Siege Accessory
    +36.58% Speed
    +19.69% Cost

    Providing extreme speed for a price. This would make an excellent choice for getting rams across places but loses out on direct combat stats.
     
    frogs.poison, purpleganja and Donar like this.
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  3. Donar

    Donar Champion

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    I like Bast’s Lion-Hilted Khopesh - Sword and Crassus’ Banner of the Scorpion - Banner!
     
  4. destroyerarcher

    destroyerarcher Champion

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    In line with my event suggestions, after participating in the 2022 Summer and Halloween events, I've had time to reflect on some possible reward changes to incentivize players to try other quests.
    I will not include Winter yet because I have not tried the quests yet, but I will add a followup as soon as I try the quests.

    Chest rewards are not included in the rework because the main draw of event quests are generally the event exclusive points and materials. Red is a nerf, Blue is a rework, Green is a buff. They are also accompanied with an estimated timeframe to give an idea of how the rewards are balanced.

    Summer:

    The Stolen Sun Shard - 250 points, 2x dye, 2x shard, 2x venom (time ~3 min)
    Snappie visits his family - 200 points, 3x shard (time 3.5 min)
    Wonders of the Sun - 200 points, 1x venom, 2x essence of ra (time 4-5 min)
    Essence of the Sun God - 600 points, 2x dye, 2x venom, 2x essence of ra (time 5-10? min)
    Snappie the Snappy Crocodile - 250 points, 2x dye, 3x melting iron, 1x venom (time ~5 min)



    Summer quests are honestly not the worst in terms of reward balancing. Despite this, there are still definite standouts.

    Stolen Sun Shard can be beaten in under 3 minutes, and even with bad RNG or a safer strategy, its payout for a consistent 5 minute clear is a massive outlier. This is why the materials will be taking a hit, as it provides substantially more materials than the other quests. Similarly, even after this nerf, it will still be extremely rewarding in materials, so points are taking a slight hit.

    Snappie visits his family is getting an increase in the amount of materials and points because of how the quest is a bit annoying to run.

    Wonders of the Sun is getting its materials redistributed so that it is not so heavily weighted towards essence (and to give essence of the sun god more of its namesake!). Points are slightly increased to encourage this quest a little more.

    Essence of the Sun God is an extremely annoying quest to run, and even if hypothetically applying top of the line micro, its rewards are sub-par. This is why it is getting a significant point increase alongside an extra essence of ra, to encourage players to endure the difficulty, and possibly come out with great rewards at the end.

    Snappie the Snappy Crocodile has fairly low points, so it has been increased to be more competitive.


    Halloween:

    Witch Way - 1 of each material and 100 points, optional of 300 points (total 400 points) (time 2.3 min)
    Dead in your Tracks - 1 of each material and 100 points, optional of 300 points (total 400 points) (time 2.5 min)
    Don't let Bahram get Embalmed - 5 of each material and 600 points (time forced 12 min)
    Tomb Sweet Tomb - 1 of each material and 100 points, optional of 150 points (total 250 points) (time 1.2 min w/o opt, 2 min w/ opt)
    Lots of Ghouls - 2 of each material and 100 points, optional of 200 points (total 300 points) (time 4-4.5 min)
    On your Gourd - 3 of each material and 300 points (active time 1-3 min, forced time of 10 min)
    Grave Mistake - 2 of each material and 100 points, optional of 400 points (total 500 points) (time of 5-5.5 min)
    Mummy Issues - 1 of each material and 100 points, optional of 300 points (total 400 points) (time 0.8 min w/o opt, 3 min w/ opt)

    Witch Way is an extremely rewarding quest, so it will be getting its rewards nerfed. Currently as of 2022's event, there is hardly any reason to run any other event quest if you are only seeking points. Despite this nerf, it will still be one of the best quests to run, because of its somewhat tough optional being required for most of the rewards.

    Dead in your Tracks is also getting a similar buff because of similar difficulty in its optional, and while Mummy Issues' optional may not be nearly as tough, it is getting a similar optional point increase, since it can still take quite a bit of time to do and has room for optimization that is lacking in Witch Way and Tracks.

    Tomb Sweet Tomb's optional is seeing a small point increase to encourage players to do the optional more often.

    Grave Mistake is currently under rewarding for the time spent. With these material and point increases, it would be a solid quest to add on a farm rotation.

    Don't let Bahram get Embalmed and On your Gourd take quite a long time for overall pitiful rewards. Gourd will receive a smaller reward buff because it can be AFKed for a lot of the quest's runtime, while Embalmed will receive a very large reward buff to encourage players to try the quest more.


    Winter:

    Reindeer Games - 1 heart shard and 200 points (time 3 min)
    The Ice King is Coming to Town - 1 heart shard and 150 points, optional of 100 points (total 250 points) (time 2 min without opt, 3 min with opt)
    Do you fear what I hear - 2 heart shards and 300 points (time 5 min)
    Home for the Holidays - 2 heart shards and 100 points (time 3.5 min)
    Spreading the Yuletide Cheer - 3 of each material and 300 points, optional of 200 points (total 500 points) (time 8-10? min)
    Dash Away All - 1 heart shard and 150 points (time 2 min)
    Hamel the Yuletide Camel - 1 heart shard and 150 points (time 2 min)


    All the winter event legendaries are pretty decently balanced, but they are all getting a slight point increase. Some of the longer ones are getting further material and point increases to make them even more lucrative. Ice King is Coming to Town is getting points added to the optional to incentivize players to do the optional over skipping it.

    I have not actually done Spreading the Yuletide Cheer myself (since it requires co-op, but offline mode lacks co-op), but from what I can gather, it should take around 8 minutes to beat, and has a good deal of skill required to pull off.

    General Event Legendaries :
    Either a baseline material increase of +5 of each material for Halloween quests, and +150 points to main objective of all event quests
    OR:
    Add a new global quest that requires 5 legendary quest completions, including non-event legendary quests. This quest would award 3000 event points and 20 of each halloween material / 10 of each summer material / 20 ice king heart shards. This quest would have a short (12hr/2days?) cooldown.

    The purpose of that repeatable is to incentivize players to diversify questing to include non-event quests, while also boosting the output of event legendary questing. This way, event legendaries would be on par with repeatable quests, while players who want to play non-event quests will not feel like they are missing out on the event rewards.
     
    #3 destroyerarcher, Nov 18, 2022 at 2:10 AM
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2022
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  5. destroyerarcher

    destroyerarcher Champion

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    I have added my winter reward suggestions, reposting on this reply for more visibility:

    Winter:

    Reindeer Games - 1 heart shard and 200 points (time 3 min)
    The Ice King is Coming to Town - 1 heart shard and 150 points, optional of 100 points (total 250 points) (time 2 min without opt, 3 min with opt)
    Do you fear what I hear - 2 heart shards and 300 points (time 5 min)
    Home for the Holidays - 2 heart shards and 100 points (time 3.5 min)
    Spreading the Yuletide Cheer - 3 of each material and 300 points, optional of 200 points (total 500 points) (time 8-10? min)
    Dash Away All - 1 heart shard and 150 points (time 2 min)
    Hamel the Yuletide Camel - 1 heart shard and 150 points (time 2 min)


    All the winter event legendaries are pretty decently balanced, but they are all getting a slight point increase. Some of the longer ones are getting further material and point increases to make them even more lucrative. Ice King is Coming to Town is getting points added to the optional to incentivize players to do the optional over skipping it.

    I have not actually done Spreading the Yuletide Cheer myself (since it requires co-op, but offline mode lacks co-op), but from what I can gather, it should take around 8 minutes to beat, and has a good deal of skill required to pull off.
     
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