Attempting balance in a feature incomplete game is a bad idea.

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black_bulldog

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Battle loot has already been limited, I attacked a Sea Raider party of 20 and got a few ragged shirts, mail boots, and a sword. The boots were nice but that was the only valuable item I got.
Yes I fought a couple of lords and made maybe 5-6K between the both of them and Raiders, Mountain Bandits, and Forest Bandits aren't worth fighting for loot any more. I can't understand why TW is so obsessed with economic balance in an EA, if this was the release version I could understand but this is EA nothing is permanent. I'm starting to feel like I'm either going to have to mod the game to have any chance of financially surviving or stop playing till TW decides that players making money isn't something that needs to be nerfed into the ground.
 

Ted Striker

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Yes I fought a couple of lords and made maybe 5-6K between the both of them and Raiders, Mountain Bandits, and Forest Bandits aren't worth fighting for loot any more. I can't understand why TW is so obsessed with economic balance in an EA, if this was the release version I could understand but this is EA nothing is permanent. I'm starting to feel like I'm either going to have to mod the game to have any chance of financially surviving or stop playing till TW decides that players making money isn't something that needs to be nerfed into the ground.
Oh so they've already implemented it.

It's been two days now since I've played. Don't like what they did in 1.1.0 and I feel 1.0.9 needs work even with mods. So this game may be shelved longer than I first anticipated. I was expected a hotfix for the economy and instead they nerf battle loot too. Wtf are you supposed to do?
 

imgran

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BTW I'd like to think the devs can walk and chew gum at the same time. The guys correcting balance issues are probably not the guys working on new content, and they're certainly not the guys designing it. In most game studious I'm aware of the dev team and the support team are separate, and it's the support team that handles the small tweaks and bugfixes. Don't know if that's how TW runs itself, but that's the industry standard.

Bottom line iI have no problem with developing the game towards its ultimate destiny while at the sae time making sure it's at least moderately playable today. I think the two ideas more or less go hand in glove.

And the coplicated issues that stem from adding new features? Willing to bet those happen anyway, no matter what they do. It's going to take a significant amount of fine tuning to get this game to where it should be. which is why I think they should plan it out very carefully, but should be getting a head start on this stuff right now.
 

imgran

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Oh so they've already implemented it.

It's been two days now since I've played. Don't like what they did in 1.1.0 and I feel 1.0.9 needs work even with mods. So this game may be shelved longer than I first anticipated. I was expected a hotfix for the economy and instead they nerf battle loot too. Wtf are you supposed to do?
Getting into fights ith lords no and having absolutely no problem making money off battle loot. It's nerfd yes but it's still very lucrative which just goes to show how ridiculous it was before.
 

JohannTheFirst

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Sorry to barge in, m'lady.

Not really going to quote all of you boys' posts here, but you're being terribly rude to someone who's simply giving his feedback on what his impression on an admittedly relatively untransparent development process is on the basis of the current patch frequency and content. Yes, it's largely guesswork on what is going on behind the scenes, but perhaps threads like these might influence how they do development, perhaps they do stem the tide against constant threads regarding imbalances that "need to be fixed ASAP" and perhaps a thread like this might actually even be helpful. Who knows?

If a thread such as this, which was relatively new and unique as opposed to whatever you think this thread is about, is something TaleWorlds do not want to see, and they do not want players speculating on what might be going on behind the scenes, they're free to enlighten us or ban any threads that reference the dev process. Somehow I don't see them doing that, and somehow I don't see how your guesswork on what threads such as these do (You seem to think they're useless, uninformed, etc.) is any more of an informed guess than whatever people may assume the direction of the development process might be.


BTW I'd like to think the devs can walk and chew gum at the same time. The guys correcting balance issues are probably not the guys working on new content, and they're certainly not the guys designing it. In most game studious I'm aware of the dev team and the support team are separate, and it's the support team that handles the small tweaks and bugfixes. Don't know if that's how TW runs itself, but that's the industry standard.

Bottom line iI have no problem with developing the game towards its ultimate destiny while at the sae time making sure it's at least moderately playable today. I think the two ideas more or less go hand in glove.

And the coplicated issues that stem from adding new features? Willing to bet those happen anyway, no matter what they do. It's going to take a significant amount of fine tuning to get this game to where it should be. which is why I think they should plan it out very carefully, but should be getting a head start on this stuff right now.
They might be, but I still believe the general gist of the thread, while it might be redundant to tell TaleWorlds, does hold true. We just don't know how they operate, and we just don't know whether the current massive influx of feedback might be pushing them into a suboptimal loop in order to please people. Maybe it's all good, and the balancing changes we've seen so far are just the sideproject they realize are futile, no idea. But, while any company has teams for different purposes, the company can still focus in rough directions in their work, and simply mentioning that it's pretty hard to balance something that is inherently incomplete shouldn't really be controversial.
 

Archonsod

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Manage your game holistically. Get all the features you want in, running bug free, and then balance them and ensure the intended challenge/player experience is correct.
That's not how you balance a game. It's like having a room with fifty boxes, only one of them is ticking and the only way to figure out which one it is would be to start opening boxes. Much easier to fill the room five boxes at a time and sort out any ticking as it comes in. The game consists of various linked systems, it's perfectly possible to tweak an individual system even without all systems being present - how much money a caravan makes doesn't really impact on how fast a bow shoots for example.
 

JohannTheFirst

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That's not how you balance a game. It's like having a room with fifty boxes, only one of them is ticking and the only way to figure out which one it is would be to start opening boxes. Much easier to fill the room five boxes at a time and sort out any ticking as it comes in. The game consists of various linked systems, it's perfectly possible to tweak an individual system even without all systems being present - how much money a caravan makes doesn't really impact on how fast a bow shoots for example.
I'm not sure how much is known about planned features, but the economy (caravans, workshops, recruitment, fief management) seems to me to be one giant interlinked system. Will there never be patrols? What would those do to bandits that in turn wouldn't be able to affect caravans, which won't or will be able to supply workshops? These generate money which affect recruitment possibilities, militia etc.

Same with Kingdom management, diplomacy and the leader AI. Will it still work like this in the future? No alliance possibilities? No better ways to increase relations, non aggression pacts, maybe some other forms of warfare? These all affect the economy in one way or another.

Don't get me wrong, you need to decrease the scope of what you're looking at in some way, but balancing generally has ripple effects throughout. Even your bow example, when you're talking about an open-world game, could have massive consequences if 90% of a faction were bowmen and you'd suddenly nerf or buff any bow stats.
 

Archonsod

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These all affect the economy in one way or another.
Affecting isn't the same as interlinking, and once you've got something stabilised it's easier to tweak the output up or down than rebuilding the entire system. The economy impacts a lot more than caravans, and things outside of the economy impact on caravans too. You pare it down precisely so you can track the ripple effects; If I wait until the game is system complete and then find the player has too much money I'd need to first test every possible source of income for the player to determine where the problem might be (usually by playing around with each in turn), apply what I think will fix it and hope the change doesn't cause issues elsewhere (or indeed, issues elsewhere don't then counter the fix). Conversely if I drill down on something like caravans I can tweak that until I'm happy, future systems (or systems which end up connected) can then be built around the stable system to take into account any knock on effects, at least in theory.
 

JohannTheFirst

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I guess I'm just not really certain what the "tweak that until I'm happy" moment could ever be in the state the game is in right now. I fear that it's more or less guaranteed that any system that might appear stable right now will necessarily be unstable the second you're introducing the future systems. They might be able to nail down a rough area where a certain system isn't broken in the exploitative kind of way, or the broken and unusable kind of way, which might be what they're trying to do with caravans right now, but they'll have to revisit most if not all sub-systems (if you will) of the economy. I doubt there's really a way to compartmentalize that in the ideal fashion you're describing. But, eh, who knows?
 

Koshkasa

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That's not how you balance a game. It's like having a room with fifty boxes, only one of them is ticking and the only way to figure out which one it is would be to start opening boxes. Much easier to fill the room five boxes at a time and sort out any ticking as it comes in.
Except other boxes, even those you've previously opened, might start ticking when new boxes are added. Your analogy will be invalidated immediately if at least two systems (boxes) have at least one state dependancy, which, in the case of a game, they always will have.

That said, I do not oppose on the go balancing like we're seeing in your example. It's just that major fixes to the current mechanics are required in order to establish how exactly they interact and how to balance them as a whole. If you want a stable bicycle, try adding a second wheel, not a plank with counterweights
 

VerlorenMind

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That's not how you balance a game. It's like having a room with fifty boxes, only one of them is ticking and the only way to figure out which one it is would be to start opening boxes. Much easier to fill the room five boxes at a time and sort out any ticking as it comes in. The game consists of various linked systems, it's perfectly possible to tweak an individual system even without all systems being present - how much money a caravan makes doesn't really impact on how fast a bow shoots for example.
I agree with your point. It's more like tweaking a subsystem (economy) within a larger system (the whole game). But even in your box analogy you still need 5 "boxes", we barely got 1 feature-wise. There is so much to be added in the caravan, production, fief management subsystem.

Let me put it this way - they nerfed the caravans, and they became barely profitable. Okay. They will tweak the numbers again and again, but then their "feature team" will implement something like patrols or manhunters to hunt down bandits. Now, the probability of losing the caravan is lower, and they might become extremely profitable again. So... what was the point of tweaking the caravan escort number again?
 

Gambles

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Caravan economy IS the economy. The caravans are a huge part to how it works. It's not RNG, it is a basic risk factor they are aiming for and one of the most complicated parts to determine if you are going to actually simulate a risk factor of 1-5% instead of just blip a caravan out of existence and give a cheesy popup about it. Then after the base is there, we get money sinks to make it less risky and such.
Uhhhh nope, not sure how much you've played but I've got quite a few hours in and the economy is heavily, almost solely, dependant on warfare mid game. The money I get from plundering, selling weapons etc from battles. Later on fiefs and what not bring that over the top to absurdity, mostly because there's nothing to spend money on. I've hardly even touched caravans or workshops, no need, nothing to spend money on and I make waaayyy to much by mid game anyway. But almost everyone has already stated this....
 

VerlorenMind

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Uhhhh nope, not sure how much you've played but I've got quite a few hours in and the economy is heavily, almost solely, dependant on warfare mid game. The money I get from plundering, selling weapons etc from battles. Later on fiefs and what not bring that over the top to absurdity, mostly because there's nothing to spend money on. I've hardly even touched caravans or workshops, no need, nothing to spend money on and I make waaayyy to much by mid game anyway. But almost everyone has already stated this....
I think by "economy" crewsk8200 meant the in-game system of trading and producing goods, not your income.
 

Gambles

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I think by "economy" crewsk8200 meant the in-game system of trading and producing goods, not your income.
But that's such a tiny almost non-existent feature for so many people playing the game. I have a few friends playing and they've not bothered with caravans or shops at all either. Right now the main problem with the "player" economy is that it can be pretty difficult initially to get denars but as the game progresses you snowball, primarily from battles and fiefs into all your money just meaning nothing as there is no economy to invest in. The caravan thing seems.... redundant... for many.

Seems almost like the game needs to be a bit more feature complete before the economy is really looked at meaningfully.
 
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Lesbosisles

Squire
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That's what I was trying to say in my own similar topic, devs put their attention to the wrong aspects when there are so many things should've been fixed by now (perks, simple diplomacy tweaks like peace time). Yet, all we've got is nerf this, nerf that, nerf caravans, nerf tournament profits (which weren't big before, now they're a joke), nerf shops, nerf, nerf, nerf. No broken perks fixed, no main storyline finished.... The only good thing we've aquired so far is an overhauled mercenary system, which were terrible at the start. That's a bit sad, considering that from now on they release patches weekly and still al we aquire is a bunch of new nerfs.

P.S. Wait for the "It's an EA" special force unit to arrive.
 

Pejot

Knight at Arms
WBVC
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Affecting isn't the same as interlinking, and once you've got something stabilised it's easier to tweak the output up or down than rebuilding the entire system. The economy impacts a lot more than caravans, and things outside of the economy impact on caravans too. You pare it down precisely so you can track the ripple effects; If I wait until the game is system complete and then find the player has too much money I'd need to first test every possible source of income for the player to determine where the problem might be (usually by playing around with each in turn), apply what I think will fix it and hope the change doesn't cause issues elsewhere (or indeed, issues elsewhere don't then counter the fix). Conversely if I drill down on something like caravans I can tweak that until I'm happy, future systems (or systems which end up connected) can then be built around the stable system to take into account any knock on effects, at least in theory.
Totally agree. It's normal way of development when You stabilise the system before adding new features. When You have stable system and add feature You can clearly see new problems caused by this and fix it faster.
If You put everything in and find out that it's not working You may never be able to find all the causes or spend a hell lot of time in finding them.

One way or another people will still complain that's something is not working for them but with current approach they at least have a way to do something with it.
 

Gamersaufromage

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I understand the point : within a non finished system, attempting to balance without the final "formula" of this system is a tedious and a hazardous work but there a some minor balance that really needs to be addressed so the campaign can be played and pushed very far in late game to encounter bugs that you dont encounter in early game.
 

SmattlePattle

Sergeant
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Totally agree. It's normal way of development when You stabilise the system before adding new features. When You have stable system and add feature You can clearly see new problems caused by this and fix it faster.
If You put everything in and find out that it's not working You may never be able to find all the causes or spend a hell lot of time in finding them.

One way or another people will still complain that's something is not working for them but with current approach they at least have a way to do something with it.
This is a reasonable argument but its not been my experience working with dynamic, multi-faceted systems. In the current example, with the caravan system, tweaking the profit balance by adding an RNG loss mechanic seems premature when there's quite a bit that will impact profitability of caravans. That's not speculation, that's undeniable given we know from the Dev's own admission the workshop system is incomplete (see wood workshops, pottery workshops, etc). Its not like if this needed to be done inevitably it'd be some hidden fix either - if Caravans were what were making people too rich you'd be able to notice it just as easily given the income a player gets from caravans is super transparent. That's my take on it, there's room for disagreement of course.

Also, sort of for the record not directed at Pejot specifically, but while I might be critical in this thread/complaining, I'm not demanding a refund, disparaging BL, and I only at the end of the day have positive things to say about TW, so when posters get riled about the "complaining" it gives me the impression people have zero tolerance for criticism.