Serious question, what happened to this game? No, I’m not saying it’s a bad game. But the design of it over time, that is what I’m questioning. Let me point out a few of the things that I question, personally, and think, in my OPINION, make the game a bit… unfair, but in an unintentional way?
- Firstly, and foremost, the gnasher design… I could go on and on for hours about how the gnasher is “good” or “bad,” or how “core” or “competitive” is the “right” gnasher, but that’s foolish and trivial. Let’s take a look at the actual design of the gnasher, particularly in comparison to other Gears of Wars. I guess one major difference, in the entire game itself, is being able to active reload without actually using any ammo, which allows you to reload at any time with a buff. Okay, I’m not a fan of it, but it is different… does this “buff” create a NEED for it? Sure everyone uses it, why shouldn’t they? But what I mean is, has this buff created a barrier in which a normal shot is far more inconsistent than an active shot? YES actives do more damage, that’s not my point, my point is consistency…
Example of inconsistency: http://xboxdvr.com/gamer/crazhoneybadger/video/53748272
Now, say what you want about this clip, I have had this happen many many MANY times since the release of the game… in my OPINION, this game has the most inconsistent gnasher… a point blank shot, from that close, while someone is standing still, should kill someone. Did I miss a bit? I don’t think so, but maybe I did. .
Now, does this happen because of lag? When players die 1-3 seconds after my shot, or, I die 1-3 seconds after they die, I question connection in this game. Some would argue yes, it’s lag. But that is a different topic. Let’s look at the DESIGN (I know I keep saying that) of the gnasher. Did you know, in this game, that the bullet comes out of the back of the gun? Now, I know that sounds absurd to some of you, but I’ve got my reasons for this, which you may decline if you wish, I respect that. The first reason: killing people behind you. This is important to differentiate from lag, since, this CAN happen in a private match on the same household connection (LAN). If you slide to cover, or wall bounce, you may notice that sometimes you die when you’re behind someone already on your screen. And in fact, when this happens, you’re behind them on their screen too. While there are many posts related to how the shotgun “is designed to come out in a cone from the barrel,” I can’t help but disagree. If my theory (if that’s the right word) is true about the gnasher, then, consequently, that would explain why body shots are inconsistent, why headshots can happen when you’re aiming at someone’s belly/lower chest fairly often, since in reality (if this is true) your cone is spreading up farther than you are intending it to due to its end starting at the back of the gun. I’ll leave that one for open discussion, without further elaboration.
Connection - a hot topic if you ask me. “It’s not the game’s end, it’s yours!” “It’s happening more today than last week!” “It’s a known issue, it will be fixed.” Again, I, with my OPINION, shake my head. When Gears of War 4 first released, region locking was in place. For those of who you do not know, region locking, in short, is when your connection is pinned up against those in the same location as you (to an extent). So, if you’re in, say, Maryland, it’s not unlikely that you’ll find players in Rhode Island. You’re both on the eastern sea board. The benefit of this is it can reduce the amount of lag compensation that happens in game. It does NOT eliminate it, but it certainly helps. After all, you’re more likely, on average, to have a solid connection with your neighbor (not literally) than you are with someone in Texas if you live in the eastern area. Of course, individual connection has some influence too, but that’s neither here nor there. After several months of debate, region locking was removed from the game. Why? Well, one reason, which is quite important, is playerbase. As the playerbase of gears of war decreases, it is harder to find matches - less people in your region, means less matches, which means it is harder to team balance, which means ranks can be skewed, and so on and so forth. Disable locking, and you allow more players to play with one another. The downside of course being more lag. I.e, more people with 60+ ping in the lobby rather than mostly 20-30. This is more of an opinion question rather than an analysis - do you like region locking? Should it have stayed? What are the downfalls to keeping it or not keeping it other than the amount of matches available? And, is lag compensation another related issue - if so, should it be more or less? (I think less)
Ranking - I’ll be honest I’m very confused on how the ranking works in this game. If someone can enlighten me, more than saying “it’s based on your skill/individual points/wins” I would love to hear it. I’ll win a match, 2-0, 4-0, whatever the score is… and not go up in rank. I could be going against diamonds, and it still won’t go up. Mind you, some diamonds are really bad at the game in my OPINION, and it makes me question how a player who does consistently better than a diamond after several matches doesn’t go up, while the diamond does (in the same team). When season 0 (1st season) and season 1 (2nd season) were introduced, I indulged myself with Gears 4 EVERY day. I loved it. It annoyed me sometimes, but I loved it. The ranking just felt right (in my opinion). My friends were always a rank below me, which made sense since they played less consistently than myself in general, and the friends that I had that were better placed higher. There were few diamonds, and most of them were good every game I played with them, on my team or against. Now, Diamond was handed to previous diamonds more or less with season 2 (3rd season) - if you were a diamond, you’d probably place diamond, even if you did bad all 5 placement matches. I actually did really bad my first 5 matches of TDM, but I still got diamond. Idk why, but I did. Now, I can win like 20 games as onyx 3, and lose 3, and still go down more than I went up. Why? Is it based off of the game’s prediction of you winning with your team against the enemy? I don’t know, but that doesn’t make much sense to me… in my opinion, OPINION, since I know this is a curve ball for most, if I win consistently, I deserve to go up, even a SMALL percentage, if I play well - REGARDLESS OF IF THE PLAYERS ARE LOWER RANKS. If I lose, then, depending how poorly I played, I should go down, if it’s consistent losses. Is that hard to implement? I don’t know, I’m not a game designer, but theoretically, it SEEMS easy. Yet, lose one match, and BOOM 10% gone (sometime more, sometimes less - based on season 3 and 4 (4 and 5)).
My final point, for now, team balancing. Sometimes, this works, sometimes, it doesn’t. It’s SO hard to implement - but what would be a good way? Right now, I would argue it doesn’t work. This could be because of a smaller player base, or other reasons, but having a team of five face a team of solos… that’s a bit strange, in my opinion anyway. It is of course your choice to play solo… but in my mind, a team of 5 is more likely to play better than a team of solos, if they have similar ranks. This isn’t true all the time, but I feel like it is more so than not. So, should team balancing include a higher focus on team size? Or, should it base it off it’s current focus of “true skill?” Mind you, this is important, and may be impacted by your thoughts of ranking…
Just a fellow gears player, looking for other people’s thoughts in the game.