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#2 A Note from [HWK]Capnjosh

Posted by capnjosh on 20 March 2015 - 06:53 PM

I’m so excited I can hardly sit still..  I’m actually standing and trying to type right now.   Note, don’t bother. Doesn’t work.

 

 

To me, the launch of the forums kicks off the next stage in the life of Hawken.  This game is significant.  This community is significant.  The support I’ve seen this community deliver to anybody and everybody is remarkable.  Really.  It’s a sense of honor I feel to have the opportunity to work with you.

 

 

We wanted to get these forums up as quickly as possible because, dude, it’s been too long.  We’ll get the more official stuff hammered out in the coming days, but I believe the future of these forums will look something kinda like this:

 

  1. You can freely express your opinions and you’ll see people being constructive (of all the crazy things ;)
  2. You will see thoughtful feedback that intends to be professional
  3. You will find a well-organized list of highly-regarded, well-made community design proposals
  4. You will find the Dev team actively wrestling with how to integrate community design proposals into ongoing dev sprints
  5. You will make a set of friends you respect, even when you heatedly disagree with them
  6. You will see many other communities sprout up around the world, each reflecting similar ideals and growth
  7. You will see rage and drama and many a fuzzy bunny.  And then you’ll see the same people coolly isolate the differences in assumptions, and then create a proposed solution, complete with tests…. Ok, now I’m preaching ;)

 

Seriously, this is gonna be good…


  • diablo878, Draigun, Titanus and 76 others like this


#7115 Results: The Hawken Community's Collective Opinions

Posted by JeffMagnum on 27 March 2015 - 11:09 PM

As some of you may know, I recently posted a thread asking for volunteers to give me their ideas on certain issues the community currently disagrees about. After hours and hours of data entry and crunching numbers, I’ve finally ended up with something useful and insightful. If you’d like to view all of the data I have in Excel and Word, here’s a download link to a .zip. Feel free to use it however you want.

 

MMR ended up being the only meaningful statistic (except for region on a question or two), so I’ve ignored everything else to save myself a lot of pointless work. Here are the demographics of everyone who responded:

 

N=42

n 0-1600 MMR=2

n 1600-2000 MMR=13

n 2000-2400 MMR=15

n 2400-2600 MMR=8

n 2600-3000 MMR=3

Average MMR=2153.756098

Median MMR=2168

Average Ping=74.292

US Players=32

EU Players=7

UK Players=2

AS Players=1

 

Pie charts make it easier to visualize:

 

ehMLvXC.png

uh2H6hu.png

 

This is the list of statements with relevant information about the responses to each of them:

Spoiler

 

What We Agree On

 

 

There’s clear consensus on some of those statements, and I think we should discuss those first. 76% (32/42) of the people surveyed believe air speed is in a good spot, and agreement isn’t limited to MMR ranges in particular—the mean and median are only 21.3 and 33 MMR below the mean and median, respectively.  However, wanting air speeds reduced strongly correlated with region. Despite making up only 24% (n=10) of the total sample group, players outside of the United States accounted for 75% (6/8) of the votes for decreasing air speed.

 

74% (31/42) of the respondents think the level restriction on AC should be lowered or removed. A lot of those voters also voted for universal AC, so there’s a clear desire for AC to be more accessible. I’ve wanted this change ever since AC was introduced, and I’m glad to see widespread support for the idea. It also has roughly equal support among all MMRs, with the mean being 19.7 and the median being 32 above the overall average

 

People definitely don’t want boosting to require more fuel. 90% (38/42) favor leaving it alone, making this an almost unanimous opinion.

 

88% (37/42) want to see A-Classes keep the same interval between dodging, and a staggering 95% (40/42) desire the same for B-Classes. Frequency of dodges with C-Classes isn’t agreed upon to quite the same extent, but 74% (31/42) is more than enough to say the timer should probably be left as it is now.

 

76% (33/42) would like a nerf to the Incinerator, though there’s some disagreement on how severe it should be. 25/32 favor a slight one. Nerfing Incin has pretty good support among all MMR ranges, though the median is somewhat high at 82 above the overall median.

 

Scanner in its current form is almost universally hated. 93% (40/43) of the votes there are either for it to be reworked or removed completely. Interestingly, the median and mean MMRs of the players (n=11) who want it removed are 140.9 and 132 above the overall values respectively, while the median and mean MMRs of players who just want a rework (n=29) are 27.2 and 18 below the respective overall stats.  

 

87% (33/38) of the people who responded don’t mind sustained weapons in their current iteration. I’m not too surprised here.

 

Bunker is the map with the most support (74%) for a rework, while Bazaar comes in at second with 67%. Almost everyone seems to hate Bunker equally, while players a little above the average MMR tend to find more issues with Bazaar.

 

There’s very clear support (95%) for MMR to be visible in-game to players in some capacity. Now that Scrimbot and hawken.herokuapp.com exist, hiding MMR does nothing more than slightly inconvenience players.  

 

71% of players would like to see some form of leaderboards implemented. With the new devs saying they want to encourage competitive play in a greater capacity than the old ones did, this seems like an obvious thing to add.

 

 

What We Don’t Agree On

 

 

 

Let’s get to the main thing everyone fights over first: Air Compressor. Keep in mind when looking at the chart that a lot of people voted for AC to both be left as is and made universal, so there ended up being 54 votes total. I didn’t intend for people to vote twice here, so it’s harder to draw a conclusion from the data I have.

 

x4hKBlh.png

 

What we can tell is that people who want it gone completely (n=3) and people who want it nerfed (n=8) are a small but vocal minority. The average MMR for those options is decidedly below the other two as well.

 

2PfOmHh.png

 

So what does the wider community think? I’m personally for universal AC, as it seems unfair to keep something that drastically alters gameplay behind an HC and XP wall even if that internal isn’t necessarily the best option for the slots it takes.

 

A majority of people want fuel use in the air to stay the same, but there’s a sizable minority that’d like to see it increase.

 

JayF1CL.png

 

To be honest, I was surprised by the MMR distribution here. The mean and median MMRs of people who’d like to see fuel use increase (n=14) are 43.7 and 112 above the respective overall values, while players who’d like it to stay the same (n=26) are only above by 7.3 and 56. Only one person voted for less fuel use.

 

8WpVEyr.png

 

Opinions on the current ground speeds mostly tend toward leaving them as they are, but the percentage of people who want to do that only hits 48%. Most of the other people would like to see them increased to some extent.

 

KwAmMdW.png

 

People of all MMRs tend to support the majority view of leaving speeds the same or increasing them. One person wanted a decrease, but I didn't include them on the graph since their MMR was 529 below the average and it made the info a lot harder to interpret.

 

WaKVA51.png

 

What should we do to resolve this? I personally voted for increasing them for some mechs in particular, but I’m open to keeping them as they are. Nerfing them would hurt the game pretty badly in my opinion, so I’m glad there’s virtually no support for that.

 

The Technician has always been a controversial mech, and that shows here.

 

39uVvUU.png

 

It’s clear that a lot of people aren’t a fan. 26 people (67%) are in favor of some sort of nerf or for it to be removed completely, while only 13 (33%) want it to stay as it is or be buffed. This subject had one of the most interesting distributions of votes by MMR.

 

shRpXvf.png

 

Why is this? I personally think Technician is balanced in high-level play, but in lower-MMR games where people tend to die less quickly when they fuzzy bunny up, does it completely throw off the balance if one team has one when the other doesn’t?

 

Something else came up here too. Many of the posters in my thread wanted a choice to completely rework Tech, so what are some ideas for doing that?

 

I’m glad to see so much support for getting rid of the weapon raise delay.

 

MRUy7uS.png

 

It’s pretty clear that people want it either shortened or gotten rid of entirely. I’d ideally like to see it go, but reducing it would be fine too. The first two responses predictably have a higher average MMR than the third one, but it’s honestly not as large of a gap as I expected.

 

vkug4QO.png

 

52% of the respondents voted for Last Eco and Uptown to be changed. What’s surprising is how mean MMR varies with each map, especially Uptown.

 

0FHop3p.png

 

My theory is that it’s because high-MMR players tend to hold the central Uptown chokepoints much more effectively, causing fights to become boring very quickly.

 

Another contentious issue is TTK: lots of people are happy with how it is now, and lots of other people are nostalgic for the longer TTK we used to have. Here’s how it breaks down:

 

oYUFv18.png

 

The last option wasn’t really supposed to be grouped with the first two, but I’m including it since people voted as if it was. The data is almost impossible to interpret because of that, since people who would’ve voted for increasing the TTK might have chosen the last option instead.

 

The MMR differences are odd if that’s the only reason, though.

 

Lh404PZ.png

 

I suspect it’s a combination of what I said above and people wanting to bring A-Classes in line with the other two. This is a fairly popular idea in high-MMR circles, mostly because of mobility becoming less important as the aim of your enemies gets better.  

 

bBphY5O.png

 

And that seems to be exactly what happened.

 

 

Why I Bothered to Do This

 

 

This was partially inspired by one of capnjosh’s posts in a thread of Omega’s about getting something together that shows the directions people want the game to go. I hope it helps the new devs get an idea of the community’s wants in general, plus I was curious myself about actual data.

 

Good job for getting through all that.


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#340 Reasons for The Fall (and their relevance re: discussions on development)

Posted by Nept on 21 March 2015 - 02:51 AM

A quick introduction: I'm Nept.  I lead Omniscient, the team that took top honours in Hawken's competitive league (TPG), and whose membership includes Climatic, hestoned, IAreDave, Leonhardt, OmniStone, 7r1p, and Xacius.  In order to avoid having our aimbots detected, I, alongside several longstanding community members, also act as the league's administrator. (That is a joke.

 

 

Before the old forums disappeared, we were treated to several (dozen) posters tolling their I-told-you-so bells and blaming Hawken's state on balance decisions. Popular particulars included movement speed (e.g., “I wanted MechWarrior-style mechs”), game pacing (e.g., “This game is literally CoD”), mech types (e.g., “The Technician and/or Incinerator and/or Sharpshooter and/or Scout have ruined this game”), and matchmaking (e.g., “High MMR players are the devil”). In my opinion, however, these explanations miss their mark completely: Hawken – an arena-style mech game – was bound to falter because of the interaction between its funding pitch and its gameplay. No balance decisions were going to alter that scenario.

 

Through two waves of funding, Meteor entertainment raised roughly twenty-eight million on the claim that Hawken's numbers could compete with League of Legends': “Mark Long, CEO of Meteor Entertainment, believes Hawken can attract 10 million gamers in 2013 and generate over $100 million in revenue for the company, which is funded by the likes of Rustic Canyon Partners, Benchmark Capital and FirstMark Capital” [link]. The latter two firms, if you weren't aware, funded League's development and were obviously hoping that lightning would strike twice. Of course it didn't, and once the investors became aware of the obvious population issues, they refused to fund further development.

 

But why couldn't Hawken compete with those numbers? Anyone who followed the game's coverage (the investors amongst them, apparently), would've noticed the overwhelmingly positive reception received by the announcement trailers. Great reception equals great numbers, right? Evidently not. Apparently, the investment firms weren't sufficiently educated on arena shooters – shooters where skill ceilings are elevated through high mobility, high movement speeds, and high times-to-kill. Although some people enjoy the challenges and ability gaps brought about by such games, most people do not. Simply put, arena shooters have never enjoyed massive audiences.

 

 

Conclusion

 

Combining an arena shooter (and a mech game, to boot – another niche genre) with a funding pitch predicated on massive populations wasn't a great idea. Arguably, combining any shooter (that's not CounterStrike) with a funding pitch predicated on massive populations isn't a great idea. And although Hawken's development had issues apart from its source of funding, none of them (again, imo) tilted its ship so dangerously as this one. [Note: I'm considering Meteor's decision to develop their own delivery and purchase system as part and parcel with its funding pitch]

 

If you're planning on posting about the game's direction, please keep my thoughts in mind. We're a tad tired of seeing people claim that their balance/gameplay suggestion will revitalize the community and attract throngs of eager gamers. It won't. The people who are interested in playing an arena mech shooter will play Hawken. The people who aren't interested will not.

 

If we're discussing playerbase development and retention, I believe it better to focus on pay models and communication. Currently, many observers and casual players think that Hawken operates on a “pay2win” model – a perception that cannot be permitted to stand. Kill two birds with one stone by offering a package that includes all current mechs alongside their abilities, weapons, and internals. If you're planning on introducing new mechs (perhaps those that have already been developed), consider a “season pass” model that will provide people future access. Toss in some aesthetics if you're feeling generous. Blitz gaming news sites with the fact that Hawken's not pay2win; capitalize on your community communication by pitching the “New Hawken Developers Working Closely With Community” interview and headline. When you're ready to develop new content, focus on extending the scope of the game through maps and game modes rather than making major balance passes. Blame Saturnine for decisions which aren't well-received.  Profit.

 

 

*Edited to include a question from, and response to, ROSING:

 

Sorry I am confused, and I mean no disrespect at all, but how will offering a package that will unlock all of the mechs and their attachments work against the game's perception as being a pay2win game? I'm probably missing something here...:T

 

But you raise some good points, and hopefully the Devs play their cards right and the odds are in their favor :)

 

No worries - at first glance the suggestion seems out of place.

 

When people complain about “pay2win,” they're typically doing so in the context of free-to-play games. By providing a complete package of mechs, abilities, items, and weapons at a reasonable price, the developers could convince potential customers that they're purchasing a full game. Players then have their choice of two options: purchase the full game, or play for free while grinding toward completion. Of course, this route would require strong communication from the developers. They would have to emphasize that non-paying players would have eventual full-game access through leveling, and that mech/weapon unlocks are sidegrades. (Yes, some changes would have to be made re: access to internals and items to ensure that they were truly sidegrades)

 

Also bears mentioning that developers (and forum communities) often underestimate the power of player ego. Although there were several factors that contributed to the pay2win perception surrounding Hawken, the most overlooked (and imo, the strongest) is the fact that players will look toward anything but themselves when explaining a loss. It's never their fault. No, it's the lag. Or the matchmaking. Or the hackers. Or the pay2win players in their pay2win mechs that are umpteen times better than yours. As a developer, you have to hammer into your playerbase (and any interviewers) the fact that pay2win mechanics are playing no part in their losses.

 

One last bit: Vanashinkaku (former developer) stated that their decision to include unlocks and levelling was based on data which demonstrated that players enjoy progression. At the same time, however, there were many players (and potential players) wanting to purchase a “full game” sans grinding. The aforementioned suggestions would satisfy both groups of players: those desiring a sense of progression (and to not pay), and those desiring the full game.


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#5549 Proposal: Automated opt-in PUG system

Posted by Ashfire908 on 25 March 2015 - 07:10 PM

Important: This project is a community project and if started will be completed in my free time. It is NOT as an official project as a developer. No ETAs are promised nor guaranteed. All details subject to change. Not responsible for loss of limb or life.

I've seen over the past few days that a hot topic has been the issue of smurfing, and the defense that it's mainly done because otherwise people cannot get into matches. I'm not personally sure of the course to take in solving the "having matches to play" vs "keeping people from getting stomped" to fix it in the long-term, but I wanted to run an old idea I had by people that may be able to at least mitigate the issue in the short term.

What I propose is an extension in scrimbot to allow it to perform the function that it was always supposed to do: Automate non-pub matches. Specifically, I propose that an automatic, opt-in, vote-driven, party-based PUG (Pick-Up Game) system be setup to help players in the higher tiers (but without explicit min/max limits).
 
Here's how it will work:
  • Players wanting to opt into the system will do so through scrimbot
  • Scrimbot will monitor the number of online, opted-in players and detect when there are enough to start a game
  • Scrimbot will create it's own party and will send out invites to the players it chooses for the match.
  • Players interested in this game will join the party. Those not intrested can skip on it or wait to be automatically excluded.
  • Scrimbot will continue to invite more players until it can create a group of 12 (or so) players.
  • Voting on a gametype (and map, based on available servers) will be performed in the party.
  • Scrimbot will select a suitable empty server and deploy the entire party to the server.
  • Due to technical reasons, the party will not be used for assigning teams and will allow the server to perform a autobalance on the players from the start with a full server (ideal conditions)
  • The match will start and continue as normal. Scrimbot will monitor the match via it's limited methods.
  • At 80% completion of the match, scrimbot will enable optional voting for mode/map, and scan for other players it can use to swap out/replace users that left/readd users that left the party.
  • At the completion of the match, scrimbot will finalize voting.
    • If no users are to be added to the party, and voting did not result in wanting to change to another server, scrimbot will return to step 9.
    • If no users are to be added to the party, and voting resulted in wanting to change to another server, scrimbot will return to step 7.
    • If users are to be added to the party, scrimbot will move the party out to the lobby, send invites to players, and return to step 4.
    • If the party falls below a certain threshold, or the party votes to disband, the players will be returned to the lobby and removed from the party. Scrimbot moves back to step 2.
I've been thinking about doing a system like this for some time, but due to lack of interest (and pending rewrites for scrimbot and my api client library), I never got around to making this a reality. Before I want to invest the time I have into this, I wanted to get feedback from the community as to if they thing this is a good idea, and if they would be interested in frequently using such a system.

Please let me know what you all think of this. I will update this post as I can with more info and such.
  • capnjosh, Saturnine, OmegaNull and 37 others like this


#1146 Welcome Back to The Hawken!

Posted by ticklemyiguana on 21 March 2015 - 02:50 PM

First, a song.
https://soundcloud.c...wken-precussive
(Hyginos, it’s spelt PERcussive, dammit.)
 

Welcome Back, Pilots!


Since January 5th, the forums have been down. Servers have slowly been going offline, the coffee was getting cold, and prior to that we had absolutely no communication with our developers.
There are a lot of questions that have been asked, and certainly there are many answers to be had.

Also first: There are new developers. This is real. The hypetrain is waiting.

Second: The acquisition of the Hawken franchise to our new overlords (Reloaded Games) was finalized on March 13, 2015. There is currently a very small, very communicative, and very dedicated team working on breathing life into the mother######ng best game of all time ever sweet jesus yes Hawken. They have reached out to many members of our community utilizing a public teamspeak organized by Merl61 and Amidatelion in order to get a feel for our expectations as the mother######ng best community of all time I ######ng love you all its core playerbase.

Third: A few pieces of information to encourage the transition.

1. Things are going to go SLOW. But they’re going to go forward. Reloaded has a small team working on Hawken, and currently it’s up to capnjosh (the lead producer for the game) to draw up an appropriate team and plan for the game. Please be patient and respectful. After hours and hours of voluntary communication on his part, it’s become very evident that we love this game, and if you screw this up I will find you and hurt you they have a bit of pressure to deal with. It’s best for them, us, and the game, to let them work at their own pace.

2. They are intent on bringing us more mechs, more maps, and more game modes. Hail Satan.

3. Adhesive games did a stellar job waylaying the pitfalls of bankruptcy. Please harbor no ill-will toward them for their silence. They spent a lot of time and effort making sure Hawken could be handed over in as pristine a condition as possible. They understood very well that they had the pleasure of serving one of the best communities in the world, and did their best to respect that.

Moving Forward.

Toward the end of Adhesive’s run with Hawken (may their spirits forever roam free) something pretty brilliant happened. The community came together and attempted to actively reverse the decay that came with the silence of the developers. We made events, we organized steam game drives, we posted challenges and tutorials, and I’m not saying a lot of this wasn’t happening all along, but damn did it make an impact on me as Hawken slowly sunk.

War Wednesdays is still on. Currently it’s sort of a make-shift deal, as there are no private servers for us to access, but every Wednesday at 9PM, we cram into our teamspeak and yell at each other about Hawken.

https://community.pl...wken-teamspeak/

Ulta Violent Wednesdays, with Dr_Freeze is active as well!
https://community.pl...ommunity-event/

 

Two Nights at Straya is apparently an up and coming weekend long event on some island on the other side of the planet. Find it here:

https://community.pl...ghts-at-straya/

 

Also keep on checking the community event hub over at https://community.pl...-hawken-events/
Thank you, silverfire, for stealing my fire.

And somewhat finally, The Project Phoenix Initiation Celebration!
For those of you who were around in December, we threw a fantastic community event on 12/12/14, and we’d like to celebrate Hawken’s reactivation in a similar vein. I am hesitantly thinking of scheduling this for April 3rd, another Friday, but I want some feedback first, which is why I’m giving it almost two weeks. Once we get a better idea of the appropriate date, and the raffle prizes (see below) I'll make an appropriate post. I'd also like to delay this a little bit in order to ensure that we get as many of our old members back as possible.

Starting now, you can sign up for Tiggs’ Hawken Hopeline. Over the past week or so, as the new developers started to check into our TeamSpeak with greater frequency, it became evident that we were going to need to expand. Merl organized a page on GoFundMe in order to crowdsource the 200 extra dollars required to secure a year’s worth of a high capacity teamspeak server annnd- it took 1 minute.
One. Minute. Now, five minutes after that first minute, we were nearing 600, but Tiggs, ######ng Tiggs, Tiggs immediately threw in two hundred dollars of her own money to make sure we had the space.

Tiggs’ Hawken Hopeline is a raffle of extra money raised that will be awarded to our community in the form of MC. Now, we’ve heard speculation that MC is going to be giftable this time around (fuzzy bunny yeah) and so we’re hoping to bring that in with a bang.
There will be a first, second, and third prize of MC, likely starting at a value of around $25 USD. This post will be edited as more information becomes available.

Like this post to sign up for the raffle. (YOU ARE MINE, MOST LIKED POST!) Winners will be announced at the return party! And no, you don’t really have to be there to claim your code, but it’d be nice!


TL;DR:
HAWKEN IS ALIVE. PLEASE LET DEVS DO DEV THINGS. RELOADED EMPLOYEE PUT DOWN 200 DOLLARS OF HER OWN SALARY TO MAKE SURE THE HAWKEN COMMUNITY COULD HAVE A TEAMSPEAK CAPABLE OF SUPPORTING A HUNDRED OR MORE MEMBERS. LIKE THIS POST FOR A CHANCE TO WIN METEOR CREDITS.
There are going to be hard times. Things are going to go slow. But the people who have picked this game up want to see it succeed, want to see our community grow, and I urge you to please, please, GO OUT AND PLAY SOME ######NG HAWKEN.


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#5605 New Player Mech and Loadout Options

Posted by capnjosh on 25 March 2015 - 08:49 PM

New players feel like they can't compete.  And, yes, there's a pretty nasty learning curve.  Not quite Eve Online learning curve, but it's in that direction:
 
jj16ThL.jpg
 
 
We're working on rebuilding the ability to release new clients, game servers, and other systems, so we can't do code changes right now to address the issue.  And we can't just wave a magic wand and "fix it".  So, what *can* we do... like, right now?  After looking at the various tools available, here's what I think will tide us over until we can address things in a more comprehensive way:
 
 
Since there are a lot new users who get the impression that Hawken is about household appliances battling over... something, I want new users to start off with the Assault mech.  I will never forget a board member finding this image: tCQSxUw.jpgStarting with the Assault should help address that snap judgement.
 
 
On a related note, back when I was green and free of all Hawken skills, I would notice the loadouts of the mechs killing me.  They had stuff that I didn't.  And then I noticed the only way for me to get that stuff was to either play a really really long time, or spend cash to get it.  Honestly, that's thinly veiled "pay to win", or it's dirty uncle "pay to compete".  I don't like that; and it's not even necessary!  What can we do though?
 
 
What if we simply give new users a full loadout of internals (let them choose their own deployables and items).  I suspect the best loadout for brand new users would emphasize survivability and slowing down the Time To Kll - so they have a little longer to process what's happening before they get killed.  Personally, when I first started Hawken, I found myself mystified as to why I just died... I didn't know what to look for, and it happened so fast that it took a *lot* of deaths before I figured it out.  There are many people who lose interest before then.  If we can reduce the number of deaths required for the average new player to "get" Hawken, then, well, that just benefits us all ;)
 
 
So... how can all this go down?  I want to try a few different new player loadouts while we're rebuilding our development capacity.  Then, I'm hoping you will seek out new players and ask for their impressions of Hawken.  This is a qualitative approach to improving the new player experience, and I think it will yield some genuine advances.
 
 
 
In recap, here's what I want to try, and what I want from you:
 
1. Let's give new players the Assault mech instead of the CR-T
    - Yell at me in the comments if that's just too offensive ;)
2. What do you think the new player loadout should be?  Reply with your thoughts.
    - Internals specifically (consider higher-tier items - they're all balanced after all)
    - Focus on survivability and slowing down the Time To Kill
    - I want to choose the first set this Friday morning (2 days from now)
3. Seek out new players and ask them:
    - What's their snap judgement of Hawken... how does it come across?
    - How much do they feel they can contribute to their team's success? How far from "competitive" to they feel?
 
 
I assume you're going to reply to this topic.  And probably message me with some choice words too ;)
 
 
 
-capnjosh

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#7159 Weekly Update

Posted by capnjosh on Yesterday, 12:58 AM

Alright, it's been a good 2 weeks since we were able to start seriously work on Hawken.  Here is what I had posted on Facebook (strikethroughs indicating the stuff I'd consider done-or-mostly-done):
 
Fix password reset
Get Forums working again
Fix more deployment stuff
Fix a bunch of tools systems 
Play Hawken
Fix more back end systems
Play more Hawken and get rolled by the good players
Fix Fix Fix (yeah, lots of this)
Plan new updates and future changes
 
I'm being a little generous with the last 2, since every time we fix a bug it seems to sort of reveal another bug that was hidden behind the first.  The planning of new updates and future changes, while not complete of course, is moving along.  Of note, there were a few things we did in addition to that list:
 
New deployment server that can build back-end services
Recovered all the old workstations
Put the first of the servers in their new home in the datacenter
Confirmed a new way of doing core analytics processing that should keep those costs way down
 
 
The nice thing is that, despite a few remaining bugs, the core systems are now all functional (besides customer support of course)
 
 
So, I figured it'd be time to make a new list of some of the things coming up next (that, and Tiggs keeps pestering me about it).  In no particular order:
 
 
1. Fix dependencies on some forum modules (that's why the home page still looks off)
2. Customer support site - we have the account set up; SSO needs to be rebuilt (more involved than with forums)
3. Licensing and licensing systems for a number of dev tools and systems, e.g. Maya, 3dsMax, source control, build servers, etc.
4. Get that new user mech and loadout implemented
5. Start digging in to the gameserver and client source code <--- that's the exciting stuff :)
6. Manage the distraction potential of meetings, legal, and other "fun" bookkeeping tasks (I try to remain positive)
 
 
Of the above list, point 6 could well be the dark horse in terms of importance ;)
Alright, I'm tired.  Time to rest up for next week.
 
 
-capnjosh

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#7162 Weekly Update - 2015-03-28

Posted by capnjosh on Yesterday, 01:03 AM

Alright, it's been a good 2 weeks since we were able to start seriously work on Hawken.  Here is what I had posted on Facebook (strikethroughs indicating the stuff I'd consider done-or-mostly-done):
 
Fix password reset
Get Forums working again
Fix more deployment stuff
Fix a bunch of tools systems 
Play Hawken
Fix more back end systems
Play more Hawken and get rolled by the good players
Fix Fix Fix (yeah, lots of this)
Plan new updates and future changes
 
I'm being a little generous with the last 2, since every time we fix a bug it seems to sort of reveal another bug that was hidden behind the first.  The planning of new updates and future changes, while not complete of course, is moving along.  Of note, there were a few things we did in addition to that list:
 
New deployment server that can build back-end services
Recovered all the old workstations
Put the first of the servers in their new home in the datacenter
Confirmed a new way of doing core analytics processing that should keep those costs way down
 
 
The nice thing is that, despite a few remaining bugs, the core systems are now all functional (besides customer support of course)
 
 
So, I figured it'd be time to make a new list of some of the things coming up next (that, and Tiggs keeps pestering me about it).  In no particular order:
 
 
1. Fix dependencies on some forum modules (that's why the home page still looks off)
2. Customer support site - we have the account set up; SSO needs to be rebuilt (more involved than with forums)
3. Licensing and licensing systems for a number of dev tools and systems, e.g. Maya, 3dsMax, source control, build servers, etc.
4. Get that new user mech and loadout implemented
5. Start digging in to the gameserver and client source code <--- that's the exciting stuff :)
6. Manage the distraction potential of meetings, legal, and other "fun" bookkeeping tasks (I try to remain positive)
 
 
Of the above list, point 6 could well be the dark horse in terms of importance ;)
Alright, I'm tired.  Time to rest up for next week.
 
 
-capnjosh

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#1439 Dear Reloaded, The Grand Tour for YOU!

Posted by ArchMech on 21 March 2015 - 09:59 PM

an edit: that image thumbnail you see be4 starting the video is a saare bouncing off a tree....then bouncing off the ground a few times
 
This video is a redo of multiple videos i and others made for the old devs/fourms in a thread where i and many other users discussed and posted data/video of the maps shortly after the explore map feature was released. many thanks to every1 who helped.
 
description: A 1 hourish tour of map oddities in Hawken maps, invisible walls in strange places, lack of wall textures in places O.o, fireballs bouncing off trees, last eco be4/after changes were made, teleporting up a straight wall, gravity acceleration bug, grenades that stick to the floor. all this data is for you, reloaded. 
 

 
 
i hope to to make more videos with more information for you reloaded including perhaps one that actually feels like "the grand tour of hawken maps" (with less focus on issues)


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#3473 Something to consider for those of us who played through the silence

Posted by crockrocket on 23 March 2015 - 04:49 PM

I'll try and keep this short. This summarizes and expounds upon my thoughts in a recent reddit comment.

 

Basically, those of us who stuck it out are the ones that liked the game enough as it is to continue playing it. Are there things we want to see changed, fixed, and implemented? Hell yes! And we have every right to voice our opinions accordingly.

 

However, anytime someone who didn't stick around talks about something they don't like, or maybe why they left, we should listen. We may not agree with them, but we have to consider that they are talking about an issue that drove them - and in many cases others - away from Hawken.

 

I know we've all been doing a good job having discussions, but I just wanted to give a heads up and make sure that the devs realize they need to pull feedback from people besides the prominent community members.

 

And if you're a returning player with an issue with Hawken, please, PLEASE speak up, especially if it was the reason you left.


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#3399 Free Mech Test Drive: Infiltrator, Raider, & Brawler

Posted by LadyTiggs on 23 March 2015 - 03:20 PM

Attention, pilots! Test driving mechs has returned! For a limited time, you can test drive the Infiltrator, Raider, and Brawler mechs for free. All 3 mechs are come fully equipped with items and internals. Stop by your garage to test drive these mechs until Friday, April 4th! 
 
Want to leave us feedback on these mechs? Provide us with your suggestions and ideas on the forums.

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#1623 Air Dodge for ALL!

Posted by RedVan on 22 March 2015 - 03:37 AM

Can we finally get air dodge as a standard feature across all mechs plz :)  More maneuverability options make the game more fun overall.

 

I remember the days of old when people were opposed to ANY air dodge.  It was introduced as an internal, and people realized how wrong they were with all the things they thought would happen ("OMG A class OP!"  "OMG C class wont be able to do ANYTHING" "OMG THIS OMG THAT").  Yeah... turns out they were all wrong.

 

Lets just take the next logical step now and make it standard so everyone can have it all the time.


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#5603 New Player Mech and Loadout Options

Posted by capnjosh on 25 March 2015 - 08:47 PM

New players feel like they can't compete.  And, yes, there's a pretty nasty learning curve.  Not quite Eve Online learning curve, but it's in that direction:
 
jj16ThL.jpg
 
 
We're working on rebuilding the ability to release new clients, game servers, and other systems, so we can't do code changes right now to address the issue.  And we can't just wave a magic wand and "fix it".  So, what *can* we do... like, right now?  After looking at the various tools available, here's what I think will tide us over until we can address things in a more comprehensive way:
 
 
Since there are a lot new users who get the impression that Hawken is about household appliances battling over... something, I want new users to start off with the Assault mech.  I will never forget a board member finding this image: tCQSxUw.jpgStarting with the Assault should help address that snap judgement.
 
 
On a related note, back when I was green and free of all Hawken skills, I would notice the loadouts of the mechs killing me.  They had stuff that I didn't.  And then I noticed the only way for me to get that stuff was to either play a really really long time, or spend cash to get it.  Honestly, that's thinly veiled "pay to win", or it's dirty uncle "pay to compete".  I don't like that; and it's not even necessary!  What can we do though?
 
 
What if we simply give new users a full loadout of internals (let them choose their own deployables and items).  I suspect the best loadout for brand new users would emphasize survivability and slowing down the Time To Kll - so they have a little longer to process what's happening before they get killed.  Personally, when I first started Hawken, I found myself mystified as to why I just died... I didn't know what to look for, and it happened so fast that it took a *lot* of deaths before I figured it out.  There are many people who lose interest before then.  If we can reduce the number of deaths required for the average new player to "get" Hawken, then, well, that just benefits us all ;)
 
 
So... how can all this go down?  I want to try a few different new player loadouts while we're rebuilding our development capacity.  Then, I'm hoping you will seek out new players and ask for their impressions of Hawken.  This is a qualitative approach to improving the new player experience, and I think it will yield some genuine advances.
 
 
 
In recap, here's what I want to try, and what I want from you:
 
1. Let's give new players the Assault mech instead of the CR-T
    - Yell at me in the comments if that's just too offensive ;)
2. What do you think the new player loadout should be?  Reply with your thoughts.
    - Internals specifically (consider higher-tier items - they're all balanced after all)
    - Focus on survivability and slowing down the Time To Kill
    - I want to choose the first set this Friday morning (2 days from now)
3. Seek out new players and ask them:
    - What's their snap judgement of Hawken... how does it come across?
    - How much do they feel they can contribute to their team's success? How far from "competitive" to they feel?
 
 
I assume you're going to reply to this topic.  And probably message me with some choice words too ;)
 
 
 
-capnjosh

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#3 A Note from [HWK]Capnjosh

Posted by capnjosh on 20 March 2015 - 06:54 PM

I’m so excited I can hardly sit still..  I’m actually standing and trying to type right now.   Note, don’t bother. Doesn’t work.

 

 

To me, the launch of the forums kicks off the next stage in the life of Hawken.  This game is significant.  This community is significant.  The support I’ve seen this community deliver to anybody and everybody is remarkable.  Really.  It’s a sense of honor I feel to have the opportunity to work with you.

 

 

We wanted to get these forums up as quickly as possible because, dude, it’s been too long.  We’ll get the more official stuff hammered out in the coming days, but I believe the future of these forums will look something kinda like this:

 

  1. You can freely express your opinions and you’ll see people being constructive (of all the crazy things ;)
  2. You will see thoughtful feedback that intends to be professional
  3. You will find a well-organized list of highly-regarded, well-made community design proposals
  4. You will find the Dev team actively wrestling with how to integrate community design proposals into ongoing dev sprints
  5. You will make a set of friends you respect, even when you heatedly disagree with them
  6. You will see many other communities sprout up around the world, each reflecting similar ideals and growth
  7. You will see rage and drama and many a fuzzy bunny.  And then you’ll see the same people coolly isolate the differences in assumptions, and then create a proposed solution, complete with tests…. Ok, now I’m preaching ;)

 

Seriously, this is gonna be good…


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#61 Introductions!

Posted by Saturnine on 20 March 2015 - 09:38 PM

I never made one of these introductions in the last forum, and a big part of me says I should keep that tradition up, but why the hell not.

I'm Saturnine, I've been with this game in one way or another ever since that first teaser trailer was released almost exactly 4 years ago now. I signed up onto the website as soon as the option was made available, and I was lucky enough to be brought into the Alpha 2 test a while after. I played almost every chance I got through the closed alpha and beta, and vociferously refused any attempts by others to get me into the wider community - I was interested only in playing the game. Towards the end of Beta 2, I ran into a group of players who gave me a good challenge - which was pretty rare since none of us had any clue what we were doing. Throughout the match they begged me to join their clan, and I only denied them. After a few rounds, however, I conceded that I was having far more fun playing against people of my own skill level, so I went ahead and joined their stupid BSB clan or whatever it was.

Things kinda proceeded quickly from there. Those same people pushed me into being active on the forums so I could represent the BSB where possible and in the process help the group go. Again reluctantly, I got into the forums, and then I kept on staying there, and became one of the more prolific posters. Meanwhile, all of us BSB peeps were still playing the game a ton, and we all waited impatiently for the imminent™ release of the open beta on 12.12.12 after a very long delay, whereupon the players crashed upon the servers in great numbers, and it was good.

On one day in particular, the BSB higherups decided that we would all get in game to have a clan meeting. Once we were all in, we promptly realized we had absolutely nothing to meet for. Exactly who brought it up first has likely been lost to history and my terrible memory, but somehow it came up that we should do 1v1s. And that was the first fight club. The BSB had a few people who could stream at that time, and one of them decided that this was something that should be streamed partway through the event, and that this should be a thing we did every week. Unfortunately the same streamer couldn't host it the next week, and so someone else had to stream it, and thus be the host. Then it happened again the next week. And the next. Eventually it came upon me to stream it, so I did! The next week however, no one was available to stream, so I grudgingly took over for the second week in a row. And then the next week. Then the next. There's a pattern here. Eventually, we decided to make the Fight Clubs a more wide-ranging thing, and advertise them on the forums ahead of time, encourage people to jump in, establish rules and norms, etc. Soon fanart was produced, some damn sexy art got produced for the threads and for the events themselves by the very talented Sylhiri, and even videos and graphics were produced for these events. The Fight Clubs were a hell of a lot of fun, and a big chunk of the community were getting in on the action. So it had to get bigger.

There was a Fight Club tournament - a huge one with tons of brackets and challengers. Adhesive and the community managers got in on advertising the tourney, prizes were prepared, fights were had, and winners were determined, it was great.

After the tournament, Hawken's officially-unofficial community podcast The Cockpit got ahold of me and asked me to be a guest on their show to talk about it for a show, so I went ahead, and people saw my beardless face for the first time. I expected to be a guest on this show only - but they asked me to come back again the next week, and the next. Then they stopped asking and just expected me to be there. Later, after Ascension, Warpig, the owner of the podcast, had me take over running the show, and we brought on a few new faces to talk about all of Hawken's ups and downs every Wednesday night, 7 pm Pacific, 10 pm eastern. That was when we learned that it was me who was to blame for all of life's problems.

In the meantime, in the BSB, schedules shift, priorities change, and people come and go. Eventually, it came down to me to run the BSB. At this point, though I didn't know it for a while, my 'old' gaming laptop had begun to break down, and by the time I became the leader of the BSB, I was no longer able to realistically play the game due to the severity with which my laptop would overheat. Which is, perhaps a bit obviously, not the greatest position to be in as a leader of a game clan. Though it was fun, my leadership too had to come to an end, and before long, so did the BSB.

Through the Hawken community, I met a huge number of amazing people who are a blast to hang out with. Be they developers and community managers like TJ, Scapes, Zamboni, Hughes or Vana, old podcast members like Warpig, NotKjell, Budekai and Toryne, new ones like KejiGoto and Leonhardt, clanmates like Der3z, Houruck, Fantus, Culex, Wolfshirt, Brave_Sir_Robin, Kill_Jack, Brevillance, MrBurns, Romulous, the world-famous Loc_TR, so many more who I can't possibly all list here, and all sorts of other people who I've run into in game, on the forums, and more. Today, I cannot believe how many cool people I've met through the Hawken community. If you told me the day I first played Hawken about all the things I've done, and the people I've met through this game, I would tell you that you are nuts. After all, game communities are universally terrible, and no matter how good Hawken was it would be no exception. That me would be wrong, but I can't fault him for thinking so.

So yeah. That's me - I post rarely, but when I do I post giant ass walls of text. If you have a problem, blame me, because you know I'm the one truly at fault. Sorry for this giant wall of ancient history, but if I'm going to give an introduction, you're going to get one.


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#4999 Nept and DerMax Discuss Hawken's Direction: Concerns and Suggestions

Posted by Superkamikazee on 25 March 2015 - 05:06 AM

Too much focus on the competitive "scene". Be careful how "competitive" you want this game be, go too far and you make the game less accessible than it already is. Hawken needs new players, not keeping a small % of quasi pro's happy. Hawken needs a balance of depth, and accessibility, please don't add so much depth that an average player can't have a good time anymore. Hawken really, desperately, needs more players.
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#194 Critical Assist

Posted by Houruck on 21 March 2015 - 01:26 AM

ca_metal.png

 
Critical Assist is a clan that formed from the union of the European Division of Black Steel Brotherhood and the Old World Lancers. We are an EU based clan with a pride in being friendly, professional and fair.
 
 
What can we offer
 
TeamSpeak 3 server
Inhouse- and open events

Private server
Ice cream
 
Leaders
 
Pure_Amazing
TheVulong
Houruck


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#6158 New Player Mech and Loadout Options

Posted by Vanashinkaku on 26 March 2015 - 10:55 AM

LEAVE FRED ALONE, HES NOT THE PROBLEM!  WE LOVE FRED!
 
It's not power, but the perception of power and the steep perceived paywall that players must over-come on a per mech basis that becomes so overwhelming. Before we can attempt to fix the problem, we must first understand what the key issues are in monetization and balance that drive new players into thinking that which is actually not true.  In many cases, it's merely perception and can be fixed solely through changing how a system is portrayed or monetized.  It's been nearly a year since I've been too involved in HAWKEN, but I'll share what I can remember feeling and thinking and crying in my pillow over not being able to change or fix.  This is just the first entry (hopefully) I will find more time to come in and put in more input later, but this issue was one of the biggest for me, as it was the lifeblood of HAWKEN, yet a failure right out the gate.
 
1.) Monetize All The Things!  
 
The Problem:
 
The first issue HAWKEN has (and arguably its biggest) is an issue of too many monetization systems in one game.   Early on, HAWKEN was supposed to be a simple 15$ XBLA title. However, after the hype train came to town, people gained interest and key choice makers decided that HAWKEN would become the next big contender in the F2P market.    The problem with this was that the systems were designed around a slower player and power progression, something not usually "accepted" in the FPS F2P community.   Instead of saying "Let's rethink our entire systems and build the game off of a singular monetization plan", many small pieces of other succesful F2P games were pieced together into a massive F2P Frankenstined on top of the old Premium systems.   This, sadly, never stopped an throughout the development of HAWKEN, more and more, as monetization continued to fail, new systems were added to continue to attempt to monetize on more and more things.   In the end, while most free to play monetization systems focus on few core elements of monetization, HAWKEN wound up in its end attempting to monetize nearly every one of its systems.
 
* Mechs (Purchase)
* Mechs (Levels!?)
* Items (Per Mech Basis!)
* Internals (Per Mech Basis!)
* Weapons
* Cosmetics
  * Skins
  * Drones
  * Cockpit
  * Thrusters
  * etc...
 
 
Why it's a Problem:
 
 
Simply put, players feel that they're being nickle and dimed as they climb a giant paywall.  They get the impression that money is power, and the deathblow to the monetization system, they see a massive wall of currency that they'll never, ever be able to overcome (in their eyes.)  The major issues:
 
* Mechs:  The idea behind the mech system was that it was to be monetized in teh same vein of League of Legends Champions.   The problem with that was that as they found out very quickly, with a small team of 30, pumping out quality, fun, and unique mechs in 1-3 months was nigh on impossible, especially with Adhesives old lack of focus on content over feature creep and monetization (Read "Priorities").   Mechs must be unlocked on a per mech basis, while not necessarily, starting the player with just Fred to customize and play with feels kinda crappy (and lets face it, a match of 12 Freds also looks dumb as hell and is not very fun.) 
 
* Mech Levels:  The idea of leveling a mech after paying for it, gating their ability to costumize them through it (power progression), and the ability to purchase your way past these (pay-to-progress) were all issues with mech levels. On top of this, having to level your mech to become competitively viable will always leave a bad taste in ones mouth.  This negatively impacts the Mech purchasing system as it makes players less willing to buy new mechs due to the investment of time and money involved in each individual mech.      
 
* Items / Internals: While I love Items and Internals, the fact that they must be purchased on a per mech basis yet again discourages players from purchasing multiple mechs (the core of all other monetization systems in the game!).   If a player must grind hours and hours to get an internal or item for each individual mech, you'll find that players will spend more time on that "one" mech that fits their playstyle perfectly, rather than owning several mechs and playing them more often.   
 
* Weapons: The percieved problem:  New weapons should be, and are, stronger.  The reality: Not necessarily.   This is a problem with the players perception of the system and how its portrayed to the player.
 
 
How do we fix the problem? :
 
I have my own ideas that I will share here, but that does not mean they are necessarily the right fit, and honestly, there could be several systems and ideas that could be. The only core thing we must really discuss is how to fix these core issues to make HAWKEN fun, as well as a viable business model.
 
* Mechs:  Before I left (read - laid off), I championed the complete redesign of the Test Drive system and it was a great step in the right direction .   It allows players to get a taste of new mechs with a full loadout and the ability to purchase that "recommended loadout" with the mech at a discounted cost.  Another consideration that was made was making one of each class, A, B, and C as starting mechs, giving players unique playstyle choices right off the bat, more thought needs to go into a system like that, but its also one I could get behind!
 
* Mech Levels:  Lets be honest, they add nothing to the game except for the perception of power progression and wasted time.   Remove them!
 
* Items / Internals:  Simply put, I would love to see this system move to "Shared Loadouts".   Loadouts that can be saved similar to Rune-Pages in LoL.   Get 3 free loadouts, and purchase additional loadout slots.  Loadouts can be used on any mech, and you only have to purchase an item and internal once to apply it to a loadout and multiple mechs can use the same loadout, or you can spend money and get loadouts for each individual situation and team-comp.   Essentially, buy it once, use it on all.
 
* Weapons - Honestly, I've never had a problem with how it works, but a new UI change could really help sway player perception...
 
 
 
Ok, I think that's enough for now.  What are ya'lls thoughts?

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#3262 Salvage: An idea to promote player retention within individual lobbies.

Posted by crockrocket on 23 March 2015 - 12:43 PM

The Problem

 

As we all know, there are serious issues with people leaving matches either mid-game, or directly following a match. Naturally, this leads to serious issues with matchmaking and game balance. One solution that has been put forward is to give a reward to players who stay in the same server for several matches in a row.

 

 

 

My Proposal

 

Add a chance for a player to receive a salvage bonus at the end of the match, given out at the same time as the HC. This salvage bonus would be in the form of a mech part salvaged from the battlefield, perhaps a limb or maybe even a cockpit. These salvage parts would be exchanged in the store for HC. I envision there being three or more tiers of salvage quality, with the higher tiers being less common, but worth more HC. The probability of receiving a higher quality drop, or even a salvage drop of any kind, would increase with consecutive matches in the same lobby. There would need to by a cap on how long this probability increases in order for salvage to not be completely OP in terms of HC collection; perhaps the cap would be five matches or so. Some careful consideration would be needed to determine the HC values of the various salvage tiers. 

 

I think this is an interesting way to add a reward for staying in the same server for multiple matches while also incorporating the game's lore. I also think this is a good way to keep new players interested, and lessen the impression of an insurmountable grind. The fact that there's a chance something good might drop at the end of a match has an addictive quality as well, and may keep some people in game for longer than normal. At the end of the day this would function similarly to already proposed rewards, but I like the idea of tying in the fact that a bunch of mechs just got blown up. 

 


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#1244 What about limited edition skins to celebrate hawkens new ownership?

Posted by DisorderlyMechanic on 21 March 2015 - 04:01 PM

I think it would be a nice idea for making something like this for players to get for free or even to purchase. It's got a couple mentions on /r/hawken and i thought it was cool so i posted it here. It could be like a reward for all the players that have stuck around all this time or to celebrate the ownership. It was just a quick thought anyway.


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