As I've mentioned before, I've played UC2 online since the beta and it's by far my favorite PS3 game and one of the best titles I've ever had the pleasure of enjoying.
With that said, it's because I love this game that I have to be brutally honest about this new update.
Where do I start, I can't even begin to describe how unbalanced the weapons are now.
You stated that you weren't lowering the health across the board like the experimental weekend but you've essentially done the exact same thing by upping every single weapon's damage (with the exclusion of the RPG, Hammer and as far as I can tell, the shotgun) CONSIDERABLY.
4 shots with the pistol? 6 with the Micro? Are you kidding me?! The Micro kills faster than the AK simply due to it's higher rate-of-fire. The pistol is ridiculously powerful, it's easily on par with the FAL at range. Speaking of FAL, it's a !@#%ing power weapon now. Actually, everything is, but forget getting away from the FAL against any decently-skilled player, you get hit once, try to roll or take cover, and you're toast.
Sniper is one hit kill ANYWHERE. Now before when it had 10 ammo and took two hits to the body it actually required this little thing called SKILL to get kills. Again I ask, why should I ever aim for the head in this game when you get absolutely no benefit from doing so?
Some boosters are now totally worthless. Down The Irons is useless, Scoped In is useless, Invalid? Hahahaha. No. Forget using From the Hip or Point and Shoot because you'll never get close enough to use them (same for the shotty).
All these alterations have COMPLETELY changed the game dynamics for the worse. Power weapons are useless due to the fact that the sniper equals 6 long range RPG's. Why go for the deagle when the FAL kills in the same time, comes with way more ammo, and has a scope to boot? Do you see how unbalanced everything has become?
The game rewards you for camping now. Forget going anywhere in the open. Escaping gunfire is next to impossible, chances are you will die 99% of the time because you won't be able to roll, jump, or take cover quick enough. My playstyle has always been to move around the map frequently and flank a lot. If I started getting shot I was good enough that nearly every time I could take cover or get away before dying. Not anymore.
Maybe this would be a tiny bit better if the spawns had been tweaked so people don't spawn right next to, or behind you. Because with these new weapon attributes you can kiss your butt goodbye if anyone gets a cheap spawn. Before you had a chance to get away, now you don't even know you're getting shot before you're dead.
It's not a matter of tactics or strategy anymore, it's who gets the jump first or who camps the most.
Naughty Dog can you please explain to us the logic behind changing the leg hitbox so now leg shots do the same damage as chest shots? Are you deliberately trying to dumb down the game? I guess making headshots meaningless in this game wasn't enough. Pre-1.05, it took 15 bullets to the leg to kill an enemy with the AK, now IT ONLY TAKES 6. WHAT THE HELL???
Instead of encouraging noobs to aim better you are just rewarding them for shooting all over the place. This one truly boggles my mind, BRING BACK LOCATION-SPECIFIC DAMAGE! *** THIS IS WITHOUT A DOUBT, THE SINGLE BIGGEST PROBLEM WITH 1.05 ***
For a complete overview of how enormous this issue is please check out Mcw00ty's Bullet damage before & after 1.05 thread.
I've added this part simply due to me (and many others) experience some of the worst spawning I have ever seen. Before 1.05, you'd get some bad spawns here and there (Fort and Temple come to mind) but it usually wasn't something you'd notice every match. Plunder's spawns were a designed to spawn enemies closer together to keep things more competitive (especially if the enemy team had the treasure) which was fine, you might get spawned killed a few times but if you were alert it wasn't a big issue.
Since the update, spawns have gotten absolutely terrible. Before 1.05 I barely, if ever, saw anyone actually spawn (i.e. appear in front of me). Now, I see it every single game. It's like ND totally removed any algorithm they had in place to spawn players away from the enemy. I've had people spawn into my crosshairs on more than one occasion.
Couple this with the fact that the new weapon damages and leg hitbox make getting shot in the back (from any distance) equate to instant death, you're gaurentee'd to die multiple times per game as a direct result of the spawns (frequently in rapid succession).
Many times I'll kill someone just to have them spawn not 15 feet behind me. I die before I know what hits me.
It works both ways too, a lot of times I'll spawn the same 15 behind an enemy. It feels completely unfair and cheap because I know that had no chance to survive, it's the spawn that killed him, not me.
WHY DOES UPDATE 1.05 MAKE IT SEEM LIKE I'M FIGHTING THE GAME JUST AS MUCH AS THE OTHER TEAM?
Because of this I'm now using Situational Awareness (a booster I hate) to help combat this awful spawns.
Often I'll see groups of 3 enemies spawn only 25 feet in front of me, 9 times out of 10 I might as well start taunting because even LVL 1's who start spraying in my general direction are going own me.
There has GOT to be a way to improve spawns and actually put people as far away from enemies/battle as possible.
Auto Camera Swapping:
Oh. My. God. How did this get into the update? Maybe the idea behind it is good but the execution is horrendous. As someone who has been used to manually switching shoulders depending on the situation, I fine this INFURIATING. Most of the time I am not next to a wall and my camera decides to have me on the left and vice versa. This completely throws off your aim frequently and the fact that I have died/missed out on kills because of this is unacceptable. I don't see any need for this at all, it just angers good players and will most likely disorient noobs. Completely remove this or at least let players toggle it on or off.
Release Notes: And finally, WHY IS THERE HARDLY ANY EXPLANATION OF THE CHANGES IN THE OFFICIAL TU 1.05 STATEMENT ON NaughtyDog.com?! There is an extremely vague "Weapon damage and attributes have been rebalanced" and not much else. Nearly every other developer I've seen lists every single change in their patches/updates down to the last
It can't hurt to thoroughly detail the GIGANTIC changes your are unloading on your faithful gaming fanbase.
Leaderboards: Two last things. Why can't you view leaderboards as party leader anymore? Removing something as harmless as this just puzzles me.
Medal Pop-ups: This is more of an annoyance/personal rant than a real issue but what the heck I'm on a roll. Why do you have to copy MW2 Naughty Dog? The old unobtrusive pop-ups were perfect. It was up in the right corner, a soft "ching" sound would play and it I liked it because it wasn't IN-YOUR-FACE. Now this stupid drum beat things plays and it flashes onto the upper part of my screen. If you get any medals consecutively it sounds like drum beat to some out-of-tempo song. Please leave it how it was.
AFK Kicker: I understand there has been outcry for a system that handles afk's, I think we can all agree that we need some sort of setup for dealing with them. A sub-2.5 minute kick is NOT the answer. That is absolutely WAY too short. What if someone needs to use the bathroom or has to leave the game for a short while? Why should they be punished? Besides if the person is absent, why kick them SO soon? Please change the time to somewhere around 3 minute.
After playing extensively with 1.05 I seriously wonder if ND tested this at all. And if they did, what their methods for testing were.
I'm not sure what data they based these "improvements" on, the experimental poll was a joke. A tiny percentage voted and ND interpreted "give it it's own playlist" as "yes I like it please apply it to the entire game". Sure the news ticker, new medals, and trophies are cool but they are hugely overshadowed but by these grievous design errors.
Making a spectrum of changes this broad so long after release is a huge mistake.
If you wanted more realism why didn't you leave damage/weapons the same as it's been and increased headshot damage by double or something? I thought before that headshots were useless. Now, there's absolutely NO REASON to aim for the head. Even the irrelevant one-less-bullet required for all headshots is gone from certain weapons. The pistol, sniper etc. have the exact same damage for body, arms/legs, AND head. WAIT WHAT?!
Naughty Dog, you said you were "evolving gameplay" for the better, instead you have de-evolved it into a mess that feels like a different game.
I plead that you to listen to us, look at the overwhelmingly negative response to 1.05; your Twitter, Facebook, Blog comments, and the threads here on the forums are evidence of this. The few pro-1.05 threads I've seen so far are usually written by sub-1KDR players. I do not mean this in a bad way because everyone is entitled to an opinion, BUT, I do not believe many of them can make the same honest judgements on the update as more experienced/skilled players can. It's hard for them to notice and identify many of the issues that I have listed.
The best part of all of this is that the "Experimental Weekend" (i.e. 65% health) was way better than 1.05. The leg hitboxes were not messed with and all the weapon damage ratios were the same. Having that crushing/65% health of that weekend would of been much better than what 1.05 has given us.
I don't know why you decided to "fix" everything that was PERFECTLY FINE when you could of addressed the HUGE amount of glitches and other problems that have remained SINCE LAUNCH, not to mention things that people have been requesting for a long time. Things like:
-Full clan support
-Better party system options
-A no-parties-allowed playlist
-More custom game modifiers
-Rank/stat-based team balancer
We understand that some things like glitches may take a long time to fix due to technical hurdles and what not, if this is the case, please make an announcement reassuring the community that they are being actively worked on.
We, the community, BEG you to bring back the game we know and love. The game we've played since launch and thoroughly enjoyed it for it's unique gameplay and more arcade feel. We have admired you ND because you haven't tried to copy other games (like MW2) and stuck to your strengths. As it is now, you might as well add some kill streaks rewards and call it a day. Please take what we've said to heart, we are fully confident you will asses the situation and do the right thing. You're move.
I've only played a few games since the update so I can't comment on much, but the auto shoulder change seemed like it needs to be tweaked or removed. I can understand why it would change shoulders when I'm right next to a wall, that's fine and dandy, but even when I'm not near any walls it seems random which shoulder I'll be looking over when I'm aiming. That might have been okay if it was like that from the start, but I've been playing since the June beta and this change has been an annoyance at least a couple times per game.
Best post you've ever made, Triplewreck. I agree with everything except the idle kicking. I think that's fine how it is. The weapon balancing changes and the fact that the tempo of the game has been so dramatically changed from what it used to be is just too much for me to continue playing, though. That, and the fact that I was in the middle of using Invalid.