Greedy Goblin

Thursday, April 16, 2015

NPE suggestion: give them missiles and drones!

Yes, I remember what I told about NPE. And it still stands. The idea below isn't an exception, merely one option worth exploring in the way I mentioned: give half of the newbies this update, the other half get the old style and see which side has better retention!

The idea came from being surprised that the wife of Rixx Javix struggles killing rats meant to be killed by newbies. I remember how I also struggled with the final NPE missions when I first did them.

The reason isn't low skillpoints or general fitting dumbness. Those rats are weak enough that it needs serious trollfit to fail to kill them. The problem is damage application aka "optimal, falloff, tracking". These are completely alien concepts to a new player and he is surprised when he hits noting because the target is either out of range or can't be tracked. When I was a newbie, I "solved" this the dumbest way as possible: mixed guns. One of them always managed to do damage and it was an improvement over "damn I'm already in structure and they aren't even scratched". Needless to say how bad it was that I "learned" that mixed guns are good.

If found the solution for this problem in a Crossing Zebras theorycrafting post about missiles. The missile damage projection formula is even more complicated than the gun formula, but it's irrelevant in the case of light missiles, as they project 100% of their paper damage on everything except afterburning frigates and even on those they project over 50%. The only way for not projecting damage with a light missile is that the target is out of its paper range, which case you can see in space how the missile loses power before reaching the target.

So the suggestion is to replace the weapon systems on the noobships and the ships offered in NPE missions of Caldari, Amarr and Minmatar to light missile launchers. Since missiles are alien to Gallente, give them drones. I mean change their noobship and one of the frigates to have no turret or launcher hardpoint but drone bay and bonuses to be on par in DPS with the noobship and basic frig of other races just by drone damage. While drones sometimes have damage projection problems, newbie rats can be tuned to be properly trackable by T1 hobgoblins. Similarly to missiles, drones give a visual feedback for out of range: they stop chasing the target.

I think more newbies would stay if CCP would remove the burden understanding damage projection mechanics at the start.

Everyone knows that the Goons are masters of spying and sowing mistrust, drama and hate among their enemies. SMA trying the same is just hilarious. I hope they never try to commit a crime (like Goons vandalizing the monument) because that would end like this.


Anonymous said...

This isn't a great idea. I see your point but this would be a noobship nerf. Why would you do that. Noobships are great for FW, even when you have proper skills to fly well fitted T1/T2 frigs. Noobships are expendable trolls, no expensive modules or implants required to troll in plexes. You can even cap or defend with "freinds". It is fun, so don't remove the hardpoints. Please!

Anonymous said...

Yes and no. If CCP does what you suggest Newbs will never learn it because there is no insentive.

isn't it simpler to just log misses and <40% projection and tooltip "WANNA DO DOUBLE DAMAGE? IF YOU WANT READ THIS!" to the player after a minute of fail combat or if the rookieship is in deep structure and 80% shield on every rat in the mission?
And again after they learn to apply >80% but strugle with tank in lvl1 missions or SOE-epic arc tooltip them good short info.
This can't be to hard it's the same like giving achivements for insane kill:death ratios in other games.

Back to my beginning. I solved it like everything else, google "why can't I hit in EVE". Some forum posts popup and EVE UNI Wiki! Today Youtube videos popup too like for example "how to survive EVE" from an EVE UNI guy.

And right there it is decided if you leave the game or not. If People don't want to read nor search info than EVE isn't the game for you. Simple as that. Sure this doesn't mean that CCP can just ignore NPE. F12 drop down list of text tutorials .. isn't very creative.

Zyankaly said...

I think it would be easier to put a new step into the tutorials, or even a few words that describe the range, like:

"be carefull soldier to keep your foe in gun range (you can see it at blablabla). And keep in mind, the bigger the gun is, so slower it will be. So for small fast targets, smaller guns will be a better choise."

May be they can give out 2 Missions. One with a frig with "big and slow" guns, where they mean to fail. And after that same Mission with small guns.


Anonymous said...

Or they could just fix the UI.

The problem isn't the hyper complex weapon mechanics, it's that there is zero feedback other than you keep missing.

The gun says it's base tracking is .086 rad/sec and damage is 2.3. What does that even mean? Even if you understand what rads are, and that the base damage is them multiplied by other factors, it's meaningless unless applied to the situation.

Tue UI completely fails to do that. Once I lock a target, I should get possible hit miss chance based on the weapon numerics and target vector. A simple "ret circle = will miss, yellow = some misses, green = Optimal! Fire!" will go leaps and bounds to teaching people the system.

Provi Miner said...

Here is where I say something about Provi, SRP and the good fight. but I will pass instead allow me to offer this link I got from a friend in -7-

Halycon said...


The reason CCP doesn't fix the UI for this is, the dev's don't want to. A UI for falloff, optimal, tracking, and such has been brought up multiple times over the years to make it easier on newbies. The winning opinion from the devs so far has been that the information displayed in such a UI is information you should learn from trial and error instead of a UI telling it to you.