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Slim McSauce

Theory to Achieve Larger Battle sizes

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Prelude

Ok so you've heard this before. NA is an MMO it relies on large numbers of player interacting with each other, including battles.
We have a hardware limit of 50 players per battle instance, this means battles cap out at 25v25 which is less than that of most Arena-style games.
Granted NA is a bit more than just a gun model on a screen, the engine isn't great but the graphics are pretty nice so we live with it.
We aren't going to get passed the 50 player limit in instance, but there are ways to make it feel to the player as if there is no limit.

Starting with a problem that NA faces pretty exclusively. Similar games such as E.V.E or Albion, manage to much larger degree for various reasons, to fit possibly hundreds of people in the same area fighting each other. This is not exactly new for MMO's, rarely do battles get above 100v100 in these scenarios but the point is it is possible and that's what makes these games great. Similarly these games also do Region v Region, Zone v Zone, Faction warfare, whatever you want to call it. It's the bread and butter of these games, it's the stand out of these MMO's and the driving force behind the economies and clans. You may look up youtube videos for biggest battles, and these games will come up. NA on the other hand, there is no "biggest battle" per se. Port battles are more MOBA than they are MMO which creates this problem of disconnect between OW and Instance. You may have 100 people on the OW ready to fight in a PB, but only 25 will ever "get in" to the battle.

There's no expanding the limit, there will never be perfectly seamless integration between the OW and Instance to give us unlimited battle sizes. We won't get the natural fluidity of command 100 guys into the fray like you do in E.V.E or Albion or any other game. There are work around's though that I think are worth exploring that could translate the MMO aspect from OW into Instanced battles.

Introduction

This is the simplest and easiest method to do so, details and all. Limits in games destroy immersion. Hardware or design set. The problem with a limit is as soon as you touch it the illusion the limit is trying to protect is drastically destroyed. Take the speed cap for example. It's there to prevent ships from reaching unrealistic speeds. Problem with showing off such a hard limit of 15.5knts is that you know once you hit that limit then you're the fastest ship in the game, which destroys the game. How so? If a game is trying to say ships can't go more than 15.5 knts because of real life physics, then you have a ship hit 15.5knts with room to spare then you've just shown that your limit is too small. Really the physics in game allow ships to do 16.5 knts if there was no artificial top end. In that case you find the natural limit within the game's own physics or design. Really my Renomee could be doing 16 knts were it not for the limit, but it's not the limit that's the problem it's the physics, if you take the fastest possible build of ship and it's over 15.5 knts then your limit does not match up to the physics you designed within the game. It's like having a top speed limiter in your car, 120mph but you're packing 500 buff horses. It's not the natural limit and you will notice that bottleneck in the design of the car.

Summary

Here we actually do have a hardware limitation, not artificially placed, it's an actual limit we don't have any say in. 25v25 is our limit in the instance, this is not a design choice it's what our technology can handle within stable margins for the majority of people. So the question is how can we use design to mitigate the hardware limitation? First lets be honest, if we could have 50v50 or 100v100 super scale battles we would. It certainly isn't impossible to find those number facing each other on OW it's only the mere limitation of the instance we don't. So what can be done?

First you up the group limit from 25 which is the hardware limit to 50, above the hardware limit. You want to wash out the perception that there even is a limit, you do that by transcending it.
Next, (and this is the meat and potatoes) when 2 groups collide and attack, and the number of players in this group exceeds the 25v25 hardware limit, instead of leaving players out of the battle, you automatically create a new battle which evenly spread out the forces into multiple instances. Ok so for example a group of 30 attacks another group of 30. Instead of opening a 25v25 and leaving 10 people out, you open a TWO (count em) TWO 15v15 instances. Or instead of that you can do one 20v20 instance and another 5v5. It doesn't have to be 50/50, whatever works the best.

From there you may have multiple fights under one crosswords, multiple instances but one solidifying battle. You can open as many battles are are needed to fit the amount of players tagging into each other, there does not have to be a group limit. 100v100 face offs on OW can seamlessly translate into battles without the awkward dance of instance hopping and tags going wrong, not everyone getting pulled in and leaving people trapped out on the OW. A battle won, measured in BR sank can mean a victory reward for the winning sides in ALL instances within the same battle. Exploits are a concern but there will be none because the multiple instance will not initiate until a threshold of 20v20 is reached within the initial tag, meaning this only will happen when large groups face off with each other, and when the instances are split they are split in a way that always makes for the most sense which can either be a 50v50 going to a 20v20 I 20v20 I 10v10 or other combinations, all leaving room for late joiners or flexible reinforcements UNLIKE the hard locked 25v25 which locks the battle. Those combinations I leave to the developers to play with and tune to their liking.
 

Conclusion

I really like this idea for the simple reason that it's a workaround to the hardware limitation of our game. If technology allowed it 50v50, or 100v100 battles would be great in NA. It would actually be pretty spectacular as much as this game is to have seamless transition between OW and Instance allowing as many players as possible. The reality is that we can only fit 50 players in one instance. It's not a terribly small number, but it's not exactly Massively Multiplayer numbers of players. Though we can't fit everyone in one Instance, we can fit everyone into one battle consisting of more than one instance, in sort of the same way Omaha, Utah, Juno, Sword and Gold beach were all a different "instance" of the same battle in the invasion of Normandy. Scaling up is better regardless of how it's achieved, and I think for Port Battles especially this sort of system could really shine and expand NA to allow massive operations not limited to hardware or server limitations.

Thanks for reading ö7

 

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they are two great ideas indeed and would up the game to a new high. however I very much doubt if the current Dev team is able to implement a system like this.

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35 minutes ago, Rickard said:

however I very much doubt if the current Dev team is able to implement a system like this.

I doubt your doubt. It's really no more than an ROE change. If tag number is greater than the value x then add an instance and split teams by a factor of .5-.75 with minor change to some UI in the cross swords menu. It should be elementary coding for the developers. It's whether or not they feel this is worth the time and effort to add (which I think it is). 

23 minutes ago, Beeekonda said:

I dont know what he said but I like it (not really)

Thank you for your support.

Edited by Slim McSauce
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14 minutes ago, Stilgar said:

Any brilliant ideas on how to increase the server population, before we start discussing mega battle instances? (no offence, just trying to stay pragmatic here)

Why yes! Turns out by incredible coincidence that the release of NA is taking place within the matter of days! This will surely generate the much needed boost in population.

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58 minutes ago, Stilgar said:

Any brilliant ideas on how to increase the server population, before we start discussing mega battle instances? (no offence, just trying to stay pragmatic here)

no mega battle instances being discussed, just opening multiple battle instances if one side has more than 25 players.

 

I think we dont need it to be honest, the guys that are outside of the battle instance can just tag eachother

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59 minutes ago, rediii said:

I think we dont need it to be honest, the guys that are outside of the battle instance can just tag eachother

The game is not optimized for more than 25v25. In a 30v30 scenario you have 4 groups instead of 2, two tags instead of one which result in worse balance due to the first battle being immediately locked down, and the second battle being a mere 5v5 and those battles not being interconnected in any way which makes for group play above 25 more difficult that it should be.

With less steps all the player has to do is group up and make the tag, the instancing will make 2 instances of 15v15 instead of 25v25 I 5v5. This scales upwards so even in the case of large 50v50 face offs you get 3 instances of (17v17) -2 in one of the battles. Which actually makes room for  another 50 whole players to join as reinforcements within the 3 instances of that one battle.

You just don't get that sort of optimization without a system like this. Players can't group up according to what the enemy brings to optimize battles, put it to the design and it will do it better than any of the players could. Not to mention port battles with this system would blow the current one out of the water. If each of 3 Pb instances had a limit of 7 1st rates, OR 15 SOL's and the rest 4ths and below. 

Your clan who would've brought 20 1st rates anyway to your PB would still do that, spread amongst 3 battles instead of all being dumped into one, and on top of that each side has like 30 slots PER PB for smaller ships of the line. AND ON TOP OF THAT another 25 slots for 4th rates and below.  Tell me that isn't better than the 15v15 SOL and like 2 frigate PB screenshots posted.

Edited by Slim McSauce

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11 hours ago, rediii said:

no mega battle instances being discussed, just opening multiple battle instances if one side has more than 25 players.

 

I think we dont need it to be honest, the guys that are outside of the battle instance can just tag eachother

why tag each other outside of 25v25 when you can 50v25? 

 586936968278048807.png

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14 hours ago, Stilgar said:

Any brilliant ideas on how to increase the server population, before we start discussing mega battle instances? (no offence, just trying to stay pragmatic here)

14955cbdac8d27e2f032cb0fb989dbfa.thumb.png.a8e493cec15a449d9e16bf5e35a2a13c.png

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Oi! Unity is a damn fine engine that has made some of my favorite games possible. I don't know of any other engine that is as mod friendly as it either. It has its flaws but pros far exceed the cons imo. 

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Unity is fine. Don't let the size of the post throw you off, it's mostly pretense. The idea it'self is very simple. When it applies, create more than one instance so if a group of of hundreds meat on OW the size outside more seamlessly transitions into battles. If you have 50v50 you don't want two 25v25's, you should want 3 17v17's give or take.

The benefits are that you can have larger groups sizes on OW fighting each other. You leave a bit of room in each battle so reinforcements can join which gives more flexibility to when you get 100 or more players in the same area. You don't want to max out the instances one by one, you want to lay the battle first and give players the choice to reinforce.

It's how it work work if there was no limit, you would just join the battle regardless. This is the only possible work around since we cannot raise the limit per instance above 50.

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13 hours ago, Mr. Doran said:

14955cbdac8d27e2f032cb0fb989dbfa.thumb.png.a8e493cec15a449d9e16bf5e35a2a13c.png

the game is still 40 euros, how amazing would it be if NA went free to play we would have some many players, mayby even to much.

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