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Anolytic

A look at Looting in Battle

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With the patch that made doubloons into loot from holds in battle, the looting mechanic has been pushed to the forefront and become one of the most important mechanics in the game. The problem is that the mechanic is currently * (not very good).
 
Before I could do most missions and just ignore looting. Now you can’t afford not to loot in case the RNG-gods are mercifull. 
 
This leads to battles where you might spend 10 minutes killing a ship, and as much as 5 minutes sailing upwind to loot it. 
You could be spending 30 minutes on a battle, and 10 minutes trying to loot, and yet there is a chance that you don’t get to loot because the ship sank too fast, or you didn’t get all the way there before the battle instance closed.
And never-mind all the times where you sail for several minutes to loot only to find an empty hold or a basic hull refit.
 
Is this good gameplay?
 
No.
 
Spending 1/5th to 1/3rd of the time in battles just fighting the wind(mill) - after the actual battle is over - is a horrible way to waste our time in-game.
 
Yeah, you can help yourself by being strategic about when you deal the killing blow to enemies. This works in easy PvE-fights. Even in Epic Events. But it doesn’t work if you took on a challenging NPC-fleet alone, where the number of enemies mean you barely scrape by, let alone a PvP-fight.
 
Is this realistic gameplay?
 
Who remembers reading the thrilling tales of Tordenskjold, or Nelson, sailing their respective flag-ships against the wind for 4 hours to loot their enemy of randomly generated loot after battle?
 
No, they had boats that they put to sea before battle. If needed they could use their oars to easily maneuver around the «field» after battle. To pick up survivors or even loot.
 
And why does loot become unavailable after the wreck sinks too far beneath the surface? Lots of loot would be floatsam and jetsam on top of the wreck site.
 
My on-the-spot, simple suggestion for a new looting mechanic:
-You can loot at 250-500 meter range. You click on the sunken ship (with CTRL), and you can open the hold and move the loot to your own ship. 
-While you loot, your ship needs to be immobilized for 5-15 seconds (simulating launching the boat). 
-A ship can be looted even if it is completely submerged.
-For the first 2 minutes after a ship sank, only whoever got credited the kill can loot it.
 
Better suggestions are welcome.
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20 minutes ago, Anolytic said:
-You can loot at 250-500 meter range. You click on the sunken ship (with CTRL), and you can open the hold and move the loot to your own ship. 
-While you loot, your ship needs to be immobilized for 5-15 seconds (simulating launching the boat). 
-A ship can be looted even if it is completely submerged.
-For the first 2 minutes after a ship sank, only whoever got credited the kill can loot it.

Sounds good.

Given half ( or more than half actually ) of the hold contents get "spilled" and lost due to the sinking the reliance on salvaging seems a good one when you have to remain stationary, simulating launching the skiffs or longboats to get the floating crates. 

10 seconds immobile - starts counting from 0.0kn - sounds absolutely reasonable.

First 2 minutes seems short. Would lock it to killer ( with the option of make available to all ) during 5 minutes.

 

- regarding the historical comparisons, there's a reason why some individuals were home fleet commanders and others were cruise frigate captains. The amount of loot the second group gained was vastly superior to the first, but the glory and fame was on the hands of the first. So, for best loot you need to raid, not rely on trafalgars.

snappy salute.

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9 minutes ago, Hethwill the Red Duke said:

Sounds good.

Given half ( or more than half actually ) of the hold contents get "spilled" and lost due to the sinking the reliance on salvaging seems a good one when you have to remain stationary, simulating launching the skiffs or longboats to get the floating crates. 

10 seconds immobile - starts counting from 0.0kn - sounds absolutely reasonable.

First 2 minutes seems short. Would lock it to killer ( with the option of make available to all ) during 5 minutes.

 

- regarding the historical comparisons, there's a reason why some individuals were home fleet commanders and others were cruise frigate captains. The amount of loot the second group gained was vastly superior to the first, but the glory and fame was on the hands of the first. So, for best loot you need to raid, not rely on trafalgars.

snappy salute.

true

but soldiers of the fleet have to eat to 

builders of ships should not starve and become slaves of the china workforce..

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Cruise Frigates usually carried "nation treasure" with them to purchase whatever necessary, including victuals or bribes for example, in their prolonged journeys. Wasn't captain's cash. Was nation's. It was in a chest in the ship.

We don't use that game design. Let's get over it. It is ALL on the captain. Hence dubloons in your private little chest.

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Overall I find the suggestion quite good. I would not go so far as forcing complete immobility. A boat can easily be launched at normal cruising speed so realism is not the issue here.

For balancing/gameplay reasons I'd say going below 3.5 knots (not quite an arbitrary number 😉 ) for 15-30 seconds could be nice. It forces you to think ab out when to loot, so you don't get boarded while you men are busy readying the boats.

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Having "strategic ressources" like repairs, which you could need immediately for the battle in the hold is fine, because they create a small objective to fight for if both sides contest it. Other loot should just be rewarded at the end of the fight.

Aside from being a QoL change, this would remove stealing loot which you didnt deserve from teammates.

 

For PvP it would decrease the incentive for ganking, because it is easier to loot if you are the dominant force in the battle.

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58 minutes ago, Angus MacDuff said:

That's just not true.

Ever did a Person-over-Board maneuver? Last time I did one (on this ship) we launched our rescue while going 7-8 knots under sail in force 7 winds.

Btw. launching the rescue (which sits just behind the forcastle) is done by hand (by 6-7 crewmembers) with two gantline. This also has to work (and does) in MUCH worse conditions. Think northern Atlantic ocean, with 5m waves.

So yes. It is true...

Edit:
Also, let's try to keep this on topic 😃

Edited by Tom Farseer
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Too many to count.  Since we're discussing the looting of a sunken ship by launching boats, I believe we are on topic.  I have also launched a rescue boat in the Atlantic in high seas (20 metre) during an actual rescue and am fully aware of the risks involved when launching them at speed. 20th/21st century mechanics for storing small boats and launching them is entirely different from launching a boat from the tiers on a 17th century ship of war.  They had to sway it out using the main course yard as a crane.  More importantly, you and I are having our fun discussing these technicalities while in reality, Captains often swayed their boats out in advance of a fight and either towed them astern or even released them for later pickup.  This reduced the risk of splinter activity when the balls started to fly.

Honestly, we could simulate our crew jumping into boats and rowing over to the sunken ship by giving us a 500 metre loot circle at 3 knots. 

Edited by Angus MacDuff
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3 hours ago, Anolytic said:
With the patch that made doubloons into loot from holds in battle, the looting mechanic has been pushed to the forefront and become one of the most important mechanics in the game. The problem is that the mechanic is currently * (not very good).
 
Before I could do most missions and just ignore looting. Now you can’t afford not to loot in case the RNG-gods are mercifull. 
 
This leads to battles where you might spend 10 minutes killing a ship, and as much as 5 minutes sailing upwind to loot it. 
You could be spending 30 minutes on a battle, and 10 minutes trying to loot, and yet there is a chance that you don’t get to loot because the ship sank too fast, or you didn’t get all the way there before the battle instance closed.
And never-mind all the times where you sail for several minutes to loot only to find an empty hold or a basic hull refit.
 
Is this good gameplay?
 
No.
 
Spending 1/5th to 1/3rd of the time in battles just fighting the wind(mill) - after the actual battle is over - is a horrible way to waste our time in-game.
 
Yeah, you can help yourself by being strategic about when you deal the killing blow to enemies. This works in easy PvE-fights. Even in Epic Events. But it doesn’t work if you took on a challenging NPC-fleet alone, where the number of enemies mean you barely scrape by, let alone a PvP-fight.
 
Is this realistic gameplay?
 
Who remembers reading the thrilling tales of Tordenskjold, or Nelson, sailing their respective flag-ships against the wind for 4 hours to loot their enemy of randomly generated loot after battle?
 
No, they had boats that they put to sea before battle. If needed they could use their oars to easily maneuver around the «field» after battle. To pick up survivors or even loot.
 
And why does loot become unavailable after the wreck sinks too far beneath the surface? Lots of loot would be floatsam and jetsam on top of the wreck site.
 
My on-the-spot, simple suggestion for a new looting mechanic:
-You can loot at 250-500 meter range. You click on the sunken ship (with CTRL), and you can open the hold and move the loot to your own ship. 
-While you loot, your ship needs to be immobilized for 5-15 seconds (simulating launching the boat). 
-A ship can be looted even if it is completely submerged.
-For the first 2 minutes after a ship sank, only whoever got credited the kill can loot it.
 
Better suggestions are welcome.

+1, but at current patch speed maybe in 2 years.... 😎

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@Angus MacDuff

I guess I should've taken a look at your location before asking^^

To be fair, the way the Thor launches it's rescue is far from modern. Only difference is that we launch not from the (nonexistant) main course but use a gantline on the schooner mast to raise/lower the boat and one connected to that to pull it abaft of the schooner's shrouds and backstays. For lack of anything usable as a crane we manually push the boat out over the bullwark. Takes more people and is probably not the safest way for those involved but we have to make do with what we got. Works quite well and we are fairly quick with it.

Edited by Tom Farseer
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3 hours ago, Hethwill the Red Duke said:

Cruise Frigates usually carried "nation treasure" with them to purchase whatever necessary, including victuals or bribes for example, in their prolonged journeys. Wasn't captain's cash. Was nation's. It was in a chest in the ship.

We don't use that game design. Let's get over it. It is ALL on the captain. Hence dubloons in your private little chest.

Actually your wrong with that last statement.  Every ship has a chance to drop Doubloons, even if you do not have any in your hull from hunting.  That would be this chest your speaking of.  If you have Doubloons in your hull from hunting that is just a bonus of what you might get.

 

I mean if RNG doesn't hate you like some of use.

One thing that will help on looting though if they can make AI actually obey the same rules as we do.  They can't just instant board you while they are sinking and most of there marines are jumping over board and the crew is in survival.  I never understood how they get instant 100% prep when half under water.

Edited by Sir Texas Sir

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Correct. :)  it is a nominal value.

Extras is the prize some of us hunt for. Hitting a "pay ship" on his way back home. Sorry m8, but my crew has to be paid... with yer gold.

NPCs, entirely different story.

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4 minutes ago, Christendom said:

How about you have an option to dispatch a cutter that auto loots and you lose 20 crew for 15 mins.  

More like a longboat, which is between a row boat and a cutter in terms of size and was carried on taller ships. They had a removable mast, sometimes one or two swivel guns and were used for coming and going to the ship. 

But yeah, that would be a very nice idea but probably not gonna happen any time soon... it has been suggested multiple times already.

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22 minutes ago, Christendom said:

How about you have an option to dispatch a cutter that auto loots and you lose 20 crew for 15 mins.  

Can they be shot at ? ( not that the rules of war during those centuries 'allowed' such practices but you know... )

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1 hour ago, Jorge said:

+1, but at current patch speed maybe in 2 years.... 😎

There are hotfixes every day at the moment in case you didnt realize. But it's cool to write this and tell your friends so just go ahead :P 

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20 minutes ago, Hethwill the Red Duke said:

Can they be shot at ? ( not that the rules of war during those centuries 'allowed' such practices but you know... )

24lb round shot into a longboat?  That would be an awesome graphic!

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2 hours ago, rediii said:

There are hotfixes every day at the moment in case you didnt realize. But it's cool to write this and tell your friends so just go ahead :P 

Hotfixes.... 😉

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15 hours ago, Anolytic said:
With the patch that made doubloons into loot from holds in battle, the looting mechanic has been pushed to the forefront and become one of the most important mechanics in the game. The problem is that the mechanic is currently * (not very good).
 
Before I could do most missions and just ignore looting. Now you can’t afford not to loot in case the RNG-gods are mercifull. 
 
This leads to battles where you might spend 10 minutes killing a ship, and as much as 5 minutes sailing upwind to loot it. 

We all know about when a ship will sink. We can tell that maybe one more broadside will do it. I've just made sure my last broadside leaves me upwind from the enemy ship. Makes for only seconds to loot. If sailing in groups, we usually have a faster ship with us, so it's no issue for that one to do all the looting of ships we couldn't get to while we finish off the enemy. Then the looting ship shares the pot.

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I agree with van der Decken on this. When we do some open world ai fleets, i'll allways issue this advice: Dont focus fire so you get assists or kills for all the ships and dont sink what you cant loot. Works pretty well.

However the looting might need rework anyway, because of patrol zone fights. Sometimes players leave the zone on purpose, to denie the loot, sometimes he dies close to the circle and you cant loot immediately bacause hes got friends and it would be suicide for some reason, then the circle shrinks and the loot is gone. Or like in that fight we had yesterday @Anolytic, where suddenly we had 4 lineships die outside the zone in the same moment ;D. Where your mates able to collect all that loot? I really think they could improve zone fight loot mechanic somehow.

Edited by Durin

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17 hours ago, van der Decken said:

We all know about when a ship will sink. We can tell that maybe one more broadside will do it. I've just made sure my last broadside leaves me upwind from the enemy ship. Makes for only seconds to loot. If sailing in groups, we usually have a faster ship with us, so it's no issue for that one to do all the looting of ships we couldn't get to while we finish off the enemy.

Works fine when you only do PvE. Also, if you'd continued reading my post, you'd have found that I address your exact point just two paragraphs down from where you quoted.

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