Author Topic: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server  (Read 592 times)

Draggynn

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Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« on: July 30, 2021, 11:33:42 am »
This thread is to discuss the economy changes currently on the test server: https://forum.cityofheroesrebirth.com/index.php/topic,145.0.html

Note that this is only the first patch of the economy/grind overhaul and there are more changes coming.
@Draggynn: Storm Summoning Psychic Defender and Badge Hunter, formerly a resident of Virtue
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Draggynn

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2021, 12:14:32 pm »
I'm waiting for the inspiration bug to be fixed before digging into things in more detail, but some initial thoughts which may change with testing:

  • The enhancement purchasing influence sinks aren't great, but they're the only ones we have at the moment.  Hopefully there are other sinks being added, but otherwise I'm wary of removing them since inflation was a very serious problem on live.  Our smaller and friendlier player base appears to have saved us from this issue initially but I think it is important to have more ways to take inf out of the economy.  I can only give away so much to new players who might not come back.
  • going off Psycho Cop's post on discord, the influence costs are no longer round numbers: 28,125,000; 16,750,000.  I think here ease of use should trump exact balancing.  At least an even million, or better yet just keep it a multiple of 5 and call those 30 and 15.
  • The cost reduction for purple IOs from empyrean merits feels too extreme.  It's effectively setting the rate at 1/night from itrials, which is maybe the intention.  But I liked that they were something that you had to work for.  I'm not sure where that sweet spot is, may be1/2 nights, so make them 12 and 15? I would be interested in knowing what the desired earn rate is of the rebalance.  I recognize my play style is quite a bit different from most, but I would like a reason to keep playing a character as long as possible, and the grind of completing multiple builds was one way to prolong the sense of progress on a character.  I would also mention that although you can always further lower prices, it can be very hard to raise them without drawing anger from the player base so I would caution, at least on live, starting with a smaller step and then increasing if it's deemed insufficient, rather than starting with a large one that is regretted later. (Obviously on the test server, you can start with the extreme step to get a reaction and then scale it back)
  • I'm not entirely clear on what: "Reward Choices for completing Incarnate content now offers a choice for a random Purple Recipe instead of Super Inspirations when receiving a Very Rare reward."  Does this mean that instead of a VR salvage from an itrial I can choose a Purple recipe, because that's an awesome change!  (I would fully support rolling this out to the other reward tables as well maybe gold/silver/bronze roll for rare, uncommon, common?).  Does this also apply to the reward tables at the end of DA arcs?  Haven't run them often enough to know how this work, or what the rarity break down is.
  • the 4x increase in PvP IOs I hope is relative to the 1% at shutdown, not the 6% currently on Rebirth. Because at 24%, I could get a PvP IO every 5 minutes on my farm rotation which feels a little too easy.
  • love the idea of gladiator merits! (As well as awarding gladiator merits for completing the zone mini games, I think it would also be good for the mini game rewards to be purchasable with gladiator merits)  Would be nice if defeating the RV AVs, or capturing a pillbox/defeating a turret also awarded merits.  Maybe a small chance for merits to drop from PvE enemies in PvP zones as well, or from running PvP missions
  • I'm also unclear on what Very Rare attuned enhancement are, but I guess I will figure that out on test.  If it hasn't been done, probably a good idea to award everyone on test super packs to test these things.
  • I understand the desire to encourage PvP, and agree that PvP IOs should be easier to earn through PvP than other methods, but the cost through other resources feel too high, especially compared with the dramatic reduction in Purple prices.  (If the astral/emp costs are raised, then at least the differential between the two won't feel as massive). Given how opposed much of the player base tends to be to PvP, I think there ought to be a more reasonable non PvP path.  If gladiator merits are added to some of the PvP zone missions, maybe that helps reduce some of the issue by allowing some people to PvE in a PvP impactful way.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2021, 02:15:05 pm by Draggynn »
@Draggynn: Storm Summoning Psychic Defender and Badge Hunter, formerly a resident of Virtue
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Donkyhotay

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2021, 02:04:53 pm »
Yeah, there are lots of interesting things proposed here. The Gladiator Merits as well as the vig/rog merits I am very excited about. I like the idea of PvPIO's being cheaper through gladiator merits, but still accessible through other merit types. I really like the idea of vig/rog merits and the option to purchase superpacks with them, again with the cost being different based on the type of merit being used.

I have mentioned this many times before, and this is probably a future update, but I would love to be able to purchase signature summons and have long thought the best option for those is using hero/vig/rog/vill merits. With the merit type spent determining what kind of summon you purchase. Hero merits get you Sister Psyche, Vig merits get you Manticore, Rog merits get you Sirocco and vill merits get you black scorpion (as examples).

I also am uncertain about about the proposed drop rates of PvPIO's in PvP. I agree with Draggynn that 24% drop rate is crazy. Honestly I think actually lowering, or even eliminating, PvPIO drops entirely and allowing players to obtain them through gladiator merits might be a better option. Not certain about that though and am curious what others think.

In regards to the proposed "sweet spot" for obtaining purps/PvPIO's I think that 2 every 5 days (a day being about 3 hours of play in a 24 hour period) would be perfect, if that is too hard of a ratio then 1 every 3 days. Obtaining 2 every 5 days means that you can get a complete 6 set with just over 2 weeks of "grinding" (estimating as someone who plays 21 hours every week, calculated by playing 3 hours every night). Even a more "casual" player (estimating as someone who plays 9 hours per week, calculated by playing 3 hours for 3 nights per week) will still get a complete 6 set every 5 weeks (little over a month). Even someone who only plays once a week (3 hours per week) would still get a complete 6 set in 3.5 months. I think these numbers keeps "blinging out" a char a long term goal to work towards while not being essentially impossible like the old rates were. As I remember the math on live you would get a *single* purp/PvP after 2 whole months of grinding.

We do need a good inf sink however these are tricky. It needs to be something that is an ongoing cost, it needs to be worth purchasing (or else people won't use it) but can't be so good that it becomes "mandatory" and locks out newsupes that won't be able to afford it right away. I admit I can't actually think of anything right now.
Do not be afraid to joust a giant just because some people insist on believing in windmills.

Synakul

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #3 on: July 31, 2021, 12:18:15 pm »
While exemplaring, level 50 characters receive a chance for level 50 recipe rewards for defeating enemies. So when im on my 50 and i team with a lvl 25 character i will be getting lvl 50 drops? But not the lvl 50 salvage? I prefer to get the lvl 25 salvage since it is not in abundance on the market.

Reward Choices for completing Incarnate content now offers a choice for a random Purple Recipe instead of Super Inspirations when receiving a Very Rare reward. This means if a new lvl 50 runs through all the incarnate arcs, then they would have the opportunity for 8 purple recipes (six, belladonna, heather, mu, duncan, solaris, dream doc x2)?

Hamidon V Seed of Hamidon. Seed is cross faction and is more likely to be ran because it has a wider availability. That being said a hamidon enhancement hasnt been highly sought after since the early days.

Gladiator merits. I would like to see these used to purchase PVP io recipes.

Super/Dual/Team inspirations. Good now i can start unloading these from my email into the market.

Brainstorm Ideas. I always loved these while back on live. I could use them to create Rare arcane salvage while in my base at a crafting table. If anything having these being a reward from super packs will help with market salvage availability.

Hero & Villain Super Packs and Vigilante & Rogue Super Packs will be purchasable with Alignment Merits. Remove any and all Alignment/Morality Tip lockout timers. Does this mean i could do 6 hero morality missions in a day and get a H/V super pack? Or Does it mean I do 5 hero alignment tips then get a hero morality and get a hero merit then the ability to get tips is still locked out for 20 hours?

Draggynn

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2021, 08:46:13 pm »
Reward Choices for completing Incarnate content now offers a choice for a random Purple Recipe instead of Super Inspirations when receiving a Very Rare reward. This means if a new lvl 50 runs through all the incarnate arcs, then they would have the opportunity for 8 purple recipes (six, belladonna, heather, mu, duncan, solaris, dream doc x2)?

This may just be if you choose the incarnate component and get the very rare roll table? If someone tests this, report back (I'm waiting for the inspiration crash fix)
@Draggynn: Storm Summoning Psychic Defender and Badge Hunter, formerly a resident of Virtue
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Donkyhotay

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2021, 06:37:13 pm »
Reward Choices for completing Incarnate content now offers a choice for a random Purple Recipe instead of Super Inspirations when receiving a Very Rare reward. This means if a new lvl 50 runs through all the incarnate arcs, then they would have the opportunity for 8 purple recipes (six, belladonna, heather, mu, duncan, solaris, dream doc x2)?

I interpret this as "get a random purple" is one of the choices at the end where you normally are choosing between incarnate rewards or super inspirations. I could be wrong as I haven't done it. I actually would love to do an iTrial on PST so we can know for certain.
Do not be afraid to joust a giant just because some people insist on believing in windmills.

Danaid

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #6 on: August 02, 2021, 12:37:17 pm »
As a relatively casual player and dedicated altaholic who isn't flush with Influence, I'm disappointed in the increased cost of the attuned IOs, specifically the Overwhelming Force as it's literally a game-changer for certain builds and only attainable a few weeks a year.

I understand the desire to regulate the prices and, frankly, 1 million, as they currently are, is quite cheap for such a useful enhancement. Would it be possible to include Overwhelming Force enhancements in the Super Packs and make them convertable as a compromise?

Draggynn

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2021, 06:20:40 pm »
Alright, more of the economy rework is now available on the test server.  Some thoughts on purple recipe availability in particular:

As I look at the changes coming through to progression for RI2, I am starting to get concerned.  I think many of us play on rebirth because we want and appreciate a slower rate of progression where fully enhancing your character is something that takes time and that you work towards.  Not something that can just be accomplished in a week and the character thrown on the pile of alts you'll never revisist.

Obviously things are still being adjusted and the new purple drop rate is far from final.  Everyone seems to agree that a drop rate of 1 purple every 5 minutes is too extreme.  However, not having a clear explanation of what the goal is, I'm left uncertain if I should be arguing about the goal or whether the implementation meets the goal.

One thing that I like about the current implementation of purple drops on the live server is that they're rare enough that people get excited about getting one.  I was recently talking to a Rebirther who had taken a hiatus on Homecoming, and noted that there purples were so common no one ever remarked on getting a purple recipe.  I think keeping a sense of excitement to purple recipes is valuable.  I think that there is definitely room to increase the drop rate (and access) from the current rate (where a player may go months without seeing a purple drop) and still keep a sense of excitement about purples.  That would be my goal if I were selecting a criteria: Increase the purple drop rate and accessibility while still keeping excitement over getting a purple recipe.

Aside from increasing the drop rate, purples have also just become easier to obtain on the test server.  They've been added to super packs, had their cost drastically decreased for empyrean merits (more on this later), had an option added for astral merits, been added as a reward option to the very rare incarnate component table, have the chance to drop for lvl 50 characters when exemplared, and are a reward for an Masters of Run.  The impact of all of these changes on the purple supply is going to be virtually impossible to gauge on the test server.  I therefore would caution strongly towards making more minor changes that can be increased if the desired effect is not achieved, rather than sweeping changes that potentially break things and need to be rolled back.

I am also concerned about the drastically reduced empyrean cost of purple recipes.  A typical night (2 hours) of running incarnate trials awards ~6 empyrean merits and ~30 astrals. So on the test server that's a guaranteed 1.66 purple recipes a night (combined with increased chance of a recipe dropping during the trial and a chance to claim one as a VR reward).  This is compared with the current rate of 0.2/night (30 emps for a purple would take 5 nights).  An increase of 8x on that front feels pretty extreme and again would be hard to judge the impact it would have on itrial attendance. (Does this drive more interest because purples are much easier to get this way than any other way in the game, or less interest because it takes fewer itrials for players to accomplish their goals?).  Although I'm not opposed to making purples cheaper, an order of magnitude change whose impact really can't be tested seems ill advised.

Edit: merits prices just got updated so a night of itrials now nets you: 0.83 Purples (6/12 emps and 30/90 astrals) so still a 4x increase although less drastic than before
« Last Edit: August 18, 2021, 09:56:35 pm by Draggynn »
@Draggynn: Storm Summoning Psychic Defender and Badge Hunter, formerly a resident of Virtue
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Donkyhotay

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #8 on: August 19, 2021, 05:51:48 pm »
I also am concerned about how easy purples are to get. Thinking about it more after my previous posts here I'm leaning towards receiving a single purple for about 7 hours of playtime as the sweet spot. It makes them something to work towards, keeps them a big deal when you get one, but a player is still able to get a full set of 6 in just 3 weeks even if they only play 3 hours per day. Of course many of us play more then that and would probably grind them faster but that's okay too.
Do not be afraid to joust a giant just because some people insist on believing in windmills.

ElBee

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2021, 04:48:11 pm »
Any future cases can be submitted in a form to help us catalog all the input we have been getting.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeGOEFoSkwjQNsVcFjfFg36JOlFgITJsqXkbyHX06niLOUxPw/viewform

edit: All who have already commented are encouraged to submit their input to the form.
« Last Edit: August 20, 2021, 05:13:03 pm by ElBee »

Draggynn

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #10 on: August 20, 2021, 05:33:28 pm »
As the discussion continues to progress on discord I think a lot of good points have been made. In particular, trying to make Purple IOs abundant enough that they end up on the market may prove challenging since people have such a potential to hoard them. This makes the goal seem that it may prove difficult to achieve without accidentally trivializing Purple IOs.

We have also had several players speak up to say that they are not opposed to purple drop rate on live and that adding easier and different ways for people to earn purples makes the drop rate less relevant, and that we should wait and see the impact of this easier access to purples before modifying the drop rate.  I have more thoughts on the purple drop rate, but for this post at least will focus on earning rate through merits at itrials.

We typically run two hours of itrials every night on Rebirth, so typically two hours of itrials seems like a good baseline to look at.  Originally the rate was 0.1 purple/night (6 merits per night for a 60 empyrean recipe).  Then in Ri1 it became 0.2 purples/night (6 merits for a 30 empyrean recipe).  As I mentioned in my edit to my previous post the current change is a jump to 0.8 purples/night (6/12 empyreans = 0.5 + 30/90 astrals = 0.33 = 0.83).  I think almost everyone would agree that the Ri1 change did not feel like it fundamentally changed the way players thought about and used purple recipes, so clearly there is room to increase the earn rate without fundamentally altering the game.  A 4x increase still feels significant, although it will be hard to gauge the impact until a month after ri2 drops, I suspect.  (I think no one knew lowering the cost to 30 emps would feel so minor).

I'm going to do some brainstorming here just to try to hash out some ideas:If we wanted to limit the change to another 2x change, for 0.4 purples/night, what might that look like?  I think we definitely want to make their empyrean cost cheaper.  If we made them 20 empyreans, then we'd have to make purples cost 300 astrals to hit that target which feels too large (6/20+30/300 = 0.4), but any less of a reduction to emp cost feels like lip service.  So If we were willing to up the earn rate to 0.5 purples/night we could keep purples at 20 empyreans, and astrals would only need to go up to 150.  Alternatively a 20/90 emp/astral cost (keeping the astral cost where it is on test), would be 0.63 purple/night a 3x increase, but now you make more progress towards purples with astrals (0.33) every night than you do with emps (0.3), which seems incorrect.  Another possibility, at least worth considering, is to not add an astral cost, and then we could lower to 12 or 15 emps without needing to worry about the additional astral earn rate.  I do like having an astral earn rate though to make those astrals more useful.

This has me liking the 20/150 split, which makes empyreans 7.5x more valuable than astrals. and a 2.5x increase from what's currently on live.  If a player attends all 5 weeknight itrials, they'll now get 2.5 purples instead of 1.  That's a change that, to me, feels impactful without feeling radical.  There's room to further reduce costs in future issues but seems unlikely to be so severe that we'll want to roll it back.  This also makes Purple Recipes cheaper to earn for players not doing itrials (who will also have the added benefit of getting more emps for rewards than they used to from other Ri2 changes.)
@Draggynn: Storm Summoning Psychic Defender and Badge Hunter, formerly a resident of Virtue
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DSpite

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #11 on: August 22, 2021, 11:16:26 pm »
Alignment Merits Overhaul

When Going Rogue was introduced it added the Alignment system to the game.  In addition to straight up allowing turncoat / redemption stories of Heroes becoming Villains(H/V) and vice versa, it added two in-between steps, Rogue & Vigilante (R/V), which had the special advantage of playing in both CoH and CoV areas.  In order to give the system a meaningful choice this was contrasted with giving those that remained one of the pure alignments access to unique vendors.

This meaningful choice has been removed on Almost Tested.  Other balance way out of whack is the alignment vendors themselves are now far inferior sources for what they were previously coveted for.  Example: Previously confirming a R/V alignment granted 60 reward merits, now it will be 1 R/V alignment merit.  A purple costs 300 reward merits (5 old R/V moralities) or 20 alignment merits (20 H/V or new R/V moralities). The new R/V merits are a straight downgrade.

The original devs set the value of an alignment merit of at least 100 reward merits, sometimes a fair bit more with rounding down costs (LotG: Def/Rech = 150 reward merits or 1 alignment merit). This was already eroded with the previous merit cost reduction issue, though that was fair enough in bringing a bit of parity.  Even if you halved their effective worth due to the 10->5 tip requirement you're looking at reward merit costs for purples/pvpios being ~75-100% too low (200% if you ignore or there wasn't an Inf cost) or alignment merit costs being that much too high.

Combine this with all the new streamlined ways to acquire purples / pvpios more efficiently elsewhere and the alignment vendors will be ignored except for a few orange recipes.

I don't have any suggestions for minor or moderate tweaks here, things are just too far out of alignment.

This needs to go back to the drawing board, and the first question answered should be "What gameplay reason would anyone have to stay a Hero / Villain now?"

Donkyhotay

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #12 on: August 23, 2021, 07:23:36 pm »
I think vig/rog merits are a good idea, however I absolutely do think there needs to be some distinction between the different merit types. Not just hero/vig/rog/vill but also reward, gladiator, emp and astral. Specifically there needs to be items unique to them that can only be purchased by them as well as price differences. For example making PvPIO's slightly less expensive when purchased with gladiator merits, though still accessible with other merit types, is a start. In regards to the 4 alignment merits I have long thought that making the signature summons purchasable with them would be a great idea. Though which summon you can purchase depends on the alignment, so vigs get Manticore, hero's get Sister Psyche, etc.
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Draggynn

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #13 on: August 23, 2021, 07:51:03 pm »
Alignment Merits Overhaul
"What gameplay reason would anyone have to stay a Hero / Villain now?"

I think this is the fundamental question.  Vigilantes and Rogues already get access to a whole other game of content which has actual game play advantages (patron power pools for heroes that switch, easier to earn merits from hero TFs for villains that switch, in addition to just generally more content available, and on our small server that means easier access to teams).  If you choose not have this dual access, you were rewarded with hero/villain merits which were 1) more efficient, and 2) had access to rewards with those merits that Rogues and Vigilantes didn't to compensate.  That reward is now being removed, so all Heroes and Villains get for remaining a hero or villain is access to less content.

This seems problematic.  Just having different but equal parity rewards for Rogues/Vigilantes and Heroes/Villains still doesn't compensate for the effective penalty that Heroes and Villains have.  The only reason to stay a Villain/Hero now is a character one and making that decision doesn't provide any compensation.
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Kismet

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Re: Feedback Thread for Economy Overhaul on Test Server
« Reply #14 on: August 25, 2021, 06:34:20 pm »
Honestly, I'd like to see Alignment minimized in importance. I think at this point in the game's life (meaning, on this server with about 500 individual log-ins a week) Alignment arbitrarily barring characters from content that they would otherwise qualify for is destructive to the server.

While on live there may have been significant differences between the sides pre-Going Rogue, much of the content added with that expansion and after was cross alignment. Cimerora, the Rikti Warzone revamp, Dark Astoria, the Wards, all the Incarnate trials, TinPex, LGTF, etc are all activities where anyone can play together regardless of their alignment. Certainly, many of these tasks are wrapped in some bit of text that explains why the threat is so large that heroes and villains might work together, but I wonder... who really needs weak prose from a decade ago to tell them who their super-person is and why they make the choices that they do?

Certainly, I see value in carefully considering how and why certain decisions were made on live, but I question what value being a Vigilante has on Rebirth right now. I've played at least 15 characters up to 50+, none of them farmed. Many of them have changed alignment for various reasons, but I can't recall ever having one of my Vigilantes join a red-side team that wasn't doing Villain tips. Very little happens red-side, especially if you view our tiny server base in the scale of a global server population spread out over the 168 hours in a week.

However, I do see value in being a Rogue. There have been several times that I've brought Rogues over to do blue-side content. In fact, it's rare that any teaming that my Rogues have done hasn't been in the company of blue-siders because of the aforementioned lack of activity on red-side.

My point here is not to boost one Alignment over the other but rather to suggest that maybe all the Heroes could be treated like Vigilantes and the Villains treated like Rogues to even the playing field and allow our small community to play as broadly as they like. Why not de-couple the zones you play in and the content you can join from the arbitrary alignment system that the developers on live consistently worked AGAINST with the aforementioned open-play content of iTrials, DA, Cim, etc?

I'm not suggesting that Heroes can go get Villain contacts (though I'm not against that), but simply letting all characters, regardless of alignment, play on either side.

If people really need something special to hang their character's identity on in terms of being a Hero/Vigilante/Rogue/Villain that their own imagination can't supply, there are still the unique alignment powers, as well as each alignment having its own roster of tip missions. Others have suggested adding Signature summons for purchase and other perks.

Turning the tables on the premise that switching sides is so powerful on Rebirth, though, it is far easier for a new player to the server to make the argument that playing a Vigilante/Rogue is at a huge disadvantage given the current outsized purchasing power of Alignment Merits (particularly given the pile you can collect from the SSA's... provided you can sit through all the unskippable dialog/cut scenes).

That's certainly how I saw the disappointing economics of the game in April/May 2019 when I first logged onto Rebirth. Now with piles of Astrals, a fair number of Emps, and hoards of Purples stashed I no longer care very much about the Alignment Merits; but, if I came on new, now, I'd likely be so turned off by the emphasis on Alignment Merits that I'd probably just go log onto another CoH server.

Mind you, I'm well aware that there may be technical limitations that I'm wholly unaware of, but it seems like a simple solution to just let Villains and Heroes play one another's content, just like Vigilantes and Rogues already do.