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Author Topic: Offseason League Settings Options  (Read 3013 times)

Doobie

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Offseason League Settings Options
« on: November 21, 2013, 04:21:58 PM »

I have gotten some preliminary encouraging news regarding the league actually happening!  Yay!  Official Announcements and further details will hopefully be coming soon.

The plan for the settings league is to have 4 weeks of games, so there are 3 sets of settings changes that can be implemented(4th week is a combination of the best of the first 3 weeks).

Hopefully this thread can serve as a location for some quick discussion/brainstorming.  I am basically going to be iterating some possible changes below(with some largely unnecessary editorializing by me).  Keep in mind the time available for development is very low, so changes that require new mechanics are almost impossible compared to making tweaks to existing settings.

Ball Carry Penalty
The penalty has been lowered over the seasons.  Removing it entirely has been floated in the past and is probably worth trying.

Goal Depth
There is no longer a reason for the depth of the goals to be as high at it is.  A thinner net could possibly allow the back of the net to be a more effective place to carry the puck.  Arnk had the foresight to mention that this change has a very low ceiling for improvement, while incurring a lot of effort as ALL team maps would have to change.

Non-Goalie Proximity
An across the board proximity decrease.  We recently went through a round of decreases and I think the gameplay improved, perhaps another round will net even better results?  Probably the most discussed settings change along with static damage over the years.  There is definitely a minimum value for proximity with the puck speed/lag but we aren't at the minimum yet.  I think it will make passing more difficult and sitting motionless on the crease less effective.  Win/Win? 

Slapshot Delay/Cost
The delay for slapshots is current around 1/2 a second.  We played a few games a couple weeks ago with 0 delay with what I think are good results.  Like the previous tests this value could be completely removed, or shaved significantly.  With the increased effectiveness the cost of slapshots should likely go up(perhaps to full energy) to balance things.

4th Shot Option
An extension of the slapshot delay being removed.  It involves leaving the slapshot as is and giving each ship another option that fits with the ships "style".  A wrister(no delay, less power) for some ships, a less powerful/less delay slapshot for others.

Goal Size
A few seasons ago we made the goal bigger(by 1 tile) and slightly boosted the goalies.  Like proximity above, perhaps more is better.  The goal size can be increased significantly(4-8) tiles total and the goalie can be improved(speed/prox by the same ratio).  If done properly this will leave the goalie effectiveness at a very similar state to where it is now while decreasing the amount of goal a pylon covers.

Goldeye's Goalie Overhaul
A number of us have gotten a chance to play around with a goalie overhaul Goldeye engineered.  In general, the goalie has less prox but is much more agile.  It showed promise and it would be very interesting to see it in "league" action.  Goldeye:"IMO the small scoring area is the single biggest problem in the game.  My current idea to fix this is to make shark considerably quicker, with slower top speed, with afterburners more important and more limited, and with smaller prox (and nerf lanc somewhat to match).  The prototype seems pretty viable.  It has the added benefit of improving the shooter's odds on breakaways."

Shot/Ship Speed Increase
Across the board Shot and or Ship Speed Increases(See C-wolfs sports science thread).  An across the board shot speed increase happened a few seasons ago, as mentioned before, perhaps a larger increase will be better?

Bullet Cost/Delay/Damage/Randomness
Almost definitely outside of the scope of what could happen in the next week or so but has to be mentioned.

What else?
« Last Edit: November 21, 2013, 04:38:24 PM by Doobie »
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Thrill HZ

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2013, 04:48:02 PM »

I really enjoyed the no snapshot delay, it increases offensive options and also rewards creative offensive vision/playmaking. It enables there to be a larger variety of plays than the limited number of effective offensive plays that can currently be effective (Basically create or take advantage of an odd man rush or try to a death-prox garbage cluster in front of the net). I'd have to see it more to be for sure but there may need to be just a slight delay instead of no delay to balance it out or a select few who are adept at using this ability will pretty much rocket past other forwards. Although it may not necessarily be a bad thing to reward offensive vision/skill.

Some thoughts on the other suggestions:

No ball carry limit could be interesting to try, the problem is in general there may be shit-heads who make the game completely unfun by just keeping the ball to themselves the entire time and refusing to pass, just keeping the ball until they die over and over again. Obviously in a league setting they would probably get removed but I'm assuming that in the long run we'd want to move towards making these the general settings for the zone, just a potential drawback. The idea is fun to play around with as technically there isn't any real reason for there to be a time limit on puck possession other than forcing players to pass. It would make passing and playmaking more strategic as opposed to 'Oh I have to pass the puck before the timer runs out'. Perhaps if there is no ball carry limit a harsher move speed penalty should be incurred by the puck carrier. Again, this would make the decision making more strategic and also realistic, since in real sports you can travel MUCH faster without the ball/puck whatever it is than with it.

Less prox sounds good as long as its balanced out for potential lag side effects.

4th shot option: Cool premise, Im not sure this is a viable option for us to shoot for at present, seems more like a novel idea that would require a ton of balancing/testing that probably wouldn't be completely done in our time frame before the next season starts. It might be better to just focus on things that are more viable to actually be changed for the upcoming season.

Goal size: Might not be a bad idea. Right now there aren't a ton of good goalies in the league, and in a playoff setting it matters but pylon defense makes up for a lot of goalie shortcomings. Making pylon defense less effective would be good, although it will make the discrepancy between the top 2 or 3 goalies and everyone else in the league even greater. Also, if we decide to reduce or remove the snapshot delay, it may make offense too powerful in conjunction with a net increase. You never know til its tested though.

Goldeye goalie overhaul: We can try testing it but I personally feel it will be a massive failure in 'league action' based on my observation of it. I think only a couple of players in the league will be able to play this ship very effectively in combination with some of the other changes we mentioned. The current general goalie population would not do well with this, the only way I see it working is if its so much more enjoyable that some of the better players switch to goalie to try it out.

In this particular kind of game I see absolutely no reason for there to be random damage, if it exists it should at least be less sporadic and unpredictable than it is at present. As you said though, I doubt this will be changed in the near future or even at all based on previous conversations Ive seen people have with Arnk Dylie.
 
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Arnk Kilo Dylie

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2013, 06:31:11 PM »

I think no ball delay would be good in the long run to give no carry penalty to ship 1 and ship 6 only to give them a new advantage over their more defensive counterparts. That said, the carry penalty is not very high to begin with anymore, but when you are a fast ship then every additional bit helps.

PS goal size was increased by 2 last time (1 on each side)
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Steve Cheese

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2013, 09:53:36 PM »

I think that changes that do not result in map changes unless it's an reduction in size overall should be avoided.

Edit: I'd like season 21 to get started in January at some point so my input (lack thereof) has motive
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Doobie

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2013, 11:52:26 PM »

I think that changes that do not result in map changes unless it's an reduction in size overall should be avoided.

Edit: I'd like season 21 to get started in January at some point so my input (lack thereof) has motive

I agree although I think you got mixed in your amount of negatives there somewhere.

Map changes wouldnt necessarily delay league but they would cause teams to make changes to their arenas if they are to be used.

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The Boogieman

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2013, 10:20:36 AM »

I think we need to come to a conclusion about whether the Lancaster fits into the ideal "Hockey Zone" that we are trying to create.

The Lancaster was created during a time when the offense had far fewer options and proximity defense was significantly stronger (old jav prox + dual barrel / levi multifire defense and no duds). Since then, the Lancaster has remained fundamentally unchanged, but it's style of play seems completely conflicting with the direction the game is heading.

It's already on a plane of low-activity that even the Levi never reached because the ship is useless and borderline detracts from your skill level in public (scrim to a lesser but important effect). It's style of goal-tending is more reflective of the skill level of your teammates than yourself and is simultaneously the most static ship in gameplay-terms.

The Lancaster in it's current implementation is impossible to balance. An unnoticable buff in acceleration / top speed / max energy / afterburn / prox is meaningless for quality of life, while a large enough increase in any of those categories to scare cross-crease play would make the ship ridiculously overpowered.

I'm sittin' here reading yet another season where people want to increase the net size, reduce prox overall, and even give 0 delay slapshots to the offense (jesus christ) and I'm wondering if we hate CR sitting and we hate passive play that much why continue to drag the Lancaster through the mud? Nostalgia? Legacy? I don't know.

But if you don't want to just admit you'd rather see the ship die than why are my bullets the same alive time as shark bullets? Who cares about a wider radius (how high was that guy) when turn rates are identical and the shark is better at being where they need to be to make a check anyway? The Lancaster needs range to deter people off the crease themselves as the offense gets better and better in the 1v1 matchups or the need to prevent those situations in the first place via CR sit only grows.

I'd post about other stuff but my opinion is probably meaningless in those arenas. I'd hope having close to 90% of the playoff minutes and at least over 50% of the regular season minutes over the last 5 years (and the only championship in longer) gives me an educated opinion here.

So unless we intend to make the Lancaster fun to play (acceleration and extremely low-effect 1 per period repels while shark gets similar rockets please) can we just admit it's not a good design for a fun game and make a new midfield ship or something more gameplay-interesting?

« Last Edit: November 22, 2013, 10:24:50 AM by The Boogieman »
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Lanc Energy:

Shark Energy:
Nerf the prox, Buff accel or make afterburner high risk/high reward, give lanc a slapshot or increase it's shotpower, fix nrg

Doobie

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2013, 11:57:36 AM »

Since most of your post was reasonable I will replay The Boogieman.  Perhaps you won't make me regret it this time.

You will hear no argument from me regarding lancaster being underutilized.  Very likely it is due to it being underpowered in some ways and not simply due to the community preferences. 

I have shied away from focusing of individual ships for this offseason event considering the time constraints, hence the broad strokes changes I proposed at first. 

You started at some suggestions to remedy the matter and I encourage you to put together a specific set you think will be the solution.  Perhaps a thread in this forum would help to reach a focused set of possible improvements. 

I can't make any promises but if you put together a reasonable set of changes that would make the lanc a viable option it may be included in one of the weeks.
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Hazecloud

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2013, 03:10:25 PM »

any chance we could test getting rid of goalie multifire, i don't see why it's necessary!
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Lawn Dwarf

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #8 on: November 23, 2013, 02:44:30 PM »

Going to respond to the immediate ideas that Doobie put in his post and my thoughts

Ball Carry Penalty
Needs to be removed all together, it is relativelyimpossible to beat a defender 1 on 1 in any ship other than a warbird...and it is STILL hard.  I also cannot remember the last time I saw anybody score in a 1 on 1 situation, because in the off chance that you can beat a defender the goalie has any possible angle cut off at that point.
This change itself will speed up the game without having to touch accell or overall top speed.  Also will impact shot speeds for same reasons.

Goal Depth
I've always wanted to see this changed.  I do not know how much work goes into having to change the tileset or whatever it is.  I agree with Arnks assessment that it has a low ceiling for improvement however...it does add a potential option being behind the net.  In a perfect world i'd love for it to be possible to actually use gretzky's office as a potential area to score from.

Non-Goalie Prox
Iffy on this one, just playing pub arena as it is right now people can barely pass as it is, i think this would almost destroy offense in its current situation.  While the idea is to battle the effectiveness of crease sitting and I understand that, I think it would hurt offense more than help it considering the other alternatives.

4th shot option
Agree with Doobie's assessment.  Goldeye was talking about it one night in his test arena diversifying the ship options by adding different shot types...i like this idea, i think it does not address our real problem which is as he's mentioned in his goalie rework - scoring area.

Slapshot Delay/Cost
Probably the thing I would like to see the most.  Only playing with it in 2 pickup scrims in #goldtest it immediately increased a few things.
Scoring Area
Pace of Play
Passing abilities

What this did was force people to come out off the crease to cut down the shooting angle, and defenders could be beat as well.  I am sure there are some balancing actions that would have to take place and i think everybody immediately said it was overpowered only because there was no adjustment period.
This change made the game feel more like hockey and less like soccer.  It addresses the 4-5 passes to get through "midfield" errr...blue line blue line.  Big fan!

Goal Size
I'm not sure about this one?  Making the goal bigger by 1 tile on each side again could help but I think it would be pretty marginal.  If you are going to make the goalie better after you increase the goal size I guess I don't see the point.  Doobie is suggesting going 4-8 tiles in total...I am trying to imagine how that would go, I think I'd have to see it to understand the results.

Goldeyes Goalie Overhaul
Surprisingly really liked it.  I think in the right hands, like a Linix or Superdan they could take over a game.  It certainly had a feel that if you did not know what you were doing would penalize you severely.  I think with this overhaul as well it DRASTICALLY changes it from the Lancaster which may force that ship in itself to be used more.  Could knock out 2 birds with 1 stone.

Shot/Ship speed increase
I do not think this needs to happen.  The fade shot in its current state is gone because the goalie can recover or be as far out to cut down the shot possibility all together.  Because the game is 2d and we can't shoot over or under things, i think it is important to make sure you have multiple ways to score.  Going up to the topic of instant slapshots I think you can diversify the shot speed without having to make an overall change to every ship.  Also removing the ball penalty helps this out as well.

Bullet Cost/Delay/Damage/Randomness
Nothing really to respond to here.  David Seaman had an interesting idea he suggested and i'd like to hear some peoples take on it...what if we substantially increased the death time...please do not respond with "nobody will play the warbird"...i get it.  Just the concept itself.


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Doobie

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2013, 03:23:02 PM »

Ball Carry Penalty - I liked the idea of the buff for the warbird/weasel over christmas/jav to give them a legitimate offensive boost, a reason to play wb/weasel rather than terrier/jav.  The other thought was that there would be some easy comparisons made of just how much of an effect it has when ships sharing the same ice have/dont have the benefit.  I think its a go whether its just for a few or all ships.

Goal Depth - It is not a hard change to make at all for say pub and rshl rinks.  The problem is that it immediately invalidates all "team arenas" which went away for years after the last rink change(not a reason not to do something significant, just a reason to not do something mediocre).  I also thing it may not be too much of a problem considering a large set of team arenas were made by the same individuals this time around who would hopefully volunteer to patch them up should it be necessary.  It may turn out that a goal depth change has more effect in the sense that there is no longer a bunch of space in the net for players/goalies.  This change could easily be made in concert with the Goal size change.

Non goalie prox - This is probably the #1 change I want to at least see.  I think we underestimate the skill level/abilities of the HZ population.  90%+ of HZers have played this game for YEARS at this point.  I think you would be surprised by the result, or maybe I am wrong and half the populations turns into CR/EXP with no passes > 1 inch. 

Slapshot Delay/Cost - agreed.  Easy win.

Goal Size - This may be my #2 if non goalie prox doesn't turn out to be workable.  Playing around with it a bit in the map editor I think it would be incredibly effective.  But yeah, biggest thing is I would love to see it. (P.S) A 6 tile total increase is a 27% increase in goal size! 

Goldeyes Goalie Overhaul - I like it and think it is a intriguing change to goalies, but does not effect the pylon effectively shutting down the other 40% of the goal.  Some of the above changes do though :)

Shot/Ship and Bullets - just too much to tackle with this

« Last Edit: November 23, 2013, 03:27:24 PM by Doobie »
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Arnk Kilo Dylie

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2013, 12:59:02 PM »

Respawn time can't really be increased. It's always 1 second for respawn in place. Any other workaround would have to change significantly the mechanics of dying/respawning and at best it'd be confusing or have major side effects. I think if we could do it, it'd be a good thing overall though.
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Cwolf

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2013, 01:09:38 PM »

sounds like fun. ill play.

lanc: tbh i dont like the current lanc's concept. what if we change the lanc to the goldeye goalie and keep shark as it is.

ball carry penalty: yea i hate the ball carry penalty. i think it might even be fun to give the ball carrier a small boost.

reducing prox: i don't think anyone can say if this would be awesome or awful, which makes it perfect for testing! i guess a main goal for these settings changes is to enable more long range passes and shots. the relationship between prox size and effectiveness of long range passes is complicated. when the proxes are huge then the defense is too powerful and you cant thread needles as much. when the proxes are tiny then you will have more incomplete passes. there must be some sweet spot and the only way to figure it out would be by testing.
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Thrill HZ

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2013, 01:40:26 PM »

The main difference that I foresee with some of these changes is that there will be a greater distinction between the skilled players and average players. At the current moment the skill that it takes to play the game is in a place where average or even below average players can impact the game because of the settings. I think all of these changes will be good but I think a lot of people will complain because they won't be able to contribute as much as they are used to because the game will be more skill based. I think this is how the game should be but I see a lot of people not liking it.
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The Boogieman

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2013, 02:01:14 PM »

I guess this is where I am supposed to plug the Defender Energy Decrease Zone. Which I've also been plugging for years and I think is the only real solution to the way defense works in this game.

I wrote four paragraphs here about the Lancaster again and realized I basically repeated myself.


Lanc TLDR
  • Tiny buffs like the Season 18 afterburn increase don't affect the outcome of any situations, making it pointless.
  • An acceleration buff runs the risk of being OP (though I question this myself now, considering it will always have no-win situations that the shark doesn't due to offensive options / lower top speed)
  • Longer bullets is the most useful and least likely buff to break the game

I think outside of fundamental changes to the ship any of the obvious categories (acceleration being the most obvious) are easy places to start with tests.

And I guess while I'm here

Random TLDR
  • No ball penalty is good for the game, but changes the 1v0 dynamic. Probably not severely, but worth keeping in mind.
  • I think no delay slapshot is very good for the transition game and the "soccer" aspect of HZ but it just seems like a broken mechanic offensively, even for 100% energy. I think you'd have to make both goalies better to compensate, but then 1v0's become impossible and scoring with a normal speed shot becomes difficult as goalies become inadvertently better at recovery. Worth bringing back, especially in an organized format.
  • I don't really see what more space behind the net would accomplish without a better way to quickly cycle (I guess this is what no delay would be), but even then I think in most cases you could just as easily pass in a ">" triangle back toward the blueline than "<" behind the net with better cycling
  • Goalies should never dud ever, it's fucking dumb

    That's about it for me.
« Last Edit: November 24, 2013, 02:06:13 PM by The Boogieman »
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Lanc Energy:

Shark Energy:
Nerf the prox, Buff accel or make afterburner high risk/high reward, give lanc a slapshot or increase it's shotpower, fix nrg

Goldeye

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #14 on: November 26, 2013, 05:09:39 PM »

LD has my thoughts almost exactly.

Adding the 'snapshot' passes will cause a similar improvement as lower proxes, without lowering the bottom line and making getting through the neutral zone cleanly too difficult.

I don't think the goal size should be increased.  I think this goal size plays well and there are other ways to achieve the desired effects.

My goalie overhaul is, optimistically, expected to reduce the effectiveness of pylons.  The primary aim of the change is to expand the range shooters can beat goalies.  That makes it easier to bypass pylons on the crease (while still having a chance to score).  The pumped up slapshots should have a similar effect, as will a larger goal.

That's about it for me.
Phew.
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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #15 on: November 26, 2013, 05:28:42 PM »

When it comes to the goalie overhaul, it sounds like a lot of fun, but is it a viable alternative to the shark+pylon now? I could see the new goalie being used in pub and scrim, but do you think it's good enough in the hands of a decent goalie to be used instead of a shark? I haven't used/seen the new goalie at all though.
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Goldeye

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #16 on: November 26, 2013, 06:23:14 PM »

Brief testing showed that it gave non-goalies difficulty, and made Linix (more) superhuman.  I think Dan struggled a bit because it did not suit his style.
The general feel I have of it is that it gives the shark the ability to make more plays while also making it easier to make mistakes.  It makes goalie a more intricate position.  I wouldn't be surprised to see lanc be more popular for pub use.

I suspect that the reduced delay slapshots are going to hurt lanc more than shark, and might serve to balance out the effect of shark changes.
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Doobie

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #17 on: November 26, 2013, 07:27:56 PM »

LD has my thoughts almost exactly.

Adding the 'snapshot' passes will cause a similar improvement as lower proxes, without lowering the bottom line and making getting through the neutral zone cleanly too difficult.

The passes will cause an improvement in a lot of ways but it will not change the amount of coverage current non-goalie proxes get sitting motionless on the crease. 
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BluckaBlucka

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #18 on: November 27, 2013, 10:24:56 AM »

I don't like or think any of your ideas will fix whats wrong with the zone, but doesn't mean I'm not willing to see where they lead.

Defense has to be the biggest issue in the zone. The role is "DEFENSE" in any other sport if the defender makes a mistake 90% of the time someone has to bail him out or that mistake gets punished ( whether it be scoring or a chance on net ). In hockey zone not only can the defender miss a check but he can still get off another check before you get by even after missing the second check if your not at a certain part of the rink almost any ship can recover for a 3rd check or get in position to interrupt the play.

there should be some sort of penalty for missing a check besides the obvious missing a check part ( the energy dump from shooting bullets clearly isn't enough to keep people from shooting any chance they get )

there should be some sort of penalty for skating backwards and looking at the enemy ( my suggestion has always been speed reduction because a player skating backwards never out skates someone going forwards)

skating backwards should also reduce the damage you do if skating forwards can increase damage beyond base why doesn't skating backwards reduce damage beyond base

will add more when i get the time





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Doobie

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Re: Offseason League Settings Options
« Reply #19 on: November 27, 2013, 12:23:07 PM »

Unfortunately I don't think we can lower backwards skating speed.

What can be done is change checking delays and energy cost to limit the chances.  It's a big balance change to make it work with off ball checking/damage etc but I do want to get into it eventually.

skating backwards should also reduce the damage you do if skating forwards can increase damage beyond base why doesn't skating backwards reduce damage beyond base.

Agreed 100% but for the event with the short turnaround I tried to avoid getting into.  The checking system is the thing I would really like to get into parallel to season 21 for use in season 22.
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