My long list of suggestions for the game. - Battle Brothers Developer Blog

This topic contains 9 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Namespace 5 days ago.

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  • #21516

    Waterd
    Participant

    Before I give my feedback I think it’s important to establish where I come from.
    I love strategic and tactical games, and not only play many online games vs players, but also enjoy many as singleplayer. I still play moo1 and Heroes of might and magic to give an example. I love the idea to ironman CRPG, but many have too many cheese deaths if you don’t know the game (oh you walk there? you die, game over) and are otherwise too easy.
    One of the CRPG that i enjoyed the most to ironman is Knights of the chalice, for it’s great ui and combat design.
    Sadly Knights of the chalice is notoriously not random, so once you know the game, you can basically repeat your motions exactly and win evertyime.

    I love the idea of roguelikes, but generally the combat in those games is pretty bland/poor and the games tend to be extremely complex yet not necessarily deep.
    Xcom is the closest i found to what I expect from a rougelike but I find the combat to slow/boring and the overall mechanics too complex too my liking. Not to say about the huge amount of micromanagment the game has which I don’t find entertaining at all.

    Battle brothers is the first “rougelike” that seem to have a very interesting Combat for my liking without being unnecessary complex. It has enough strategic elements to make it deep, yet not shallow.
    A minimum amount of micromanagement And the combat is slightly too slow, but still way ahead of a game like XCOM (but not dynamic enough like Heroes of might and magic or Knights of the chalice)

    So this is pretty close to a game I was looking forever in gaming. So thank you a lot for making this game. I only played so far Expert ironman and did 10 runs, and i’m now deep into my 11th run (Day 72)

    With that said for someone that enjoy tactical/strategic games of this kind, It has several things I think would improve and would appeal to many players like me, some of which are my friends, and are repealed by some features of this game.

    So with that, this is the list of suggestions, feedback, and personal recommendations. I know some of them could be in a patch, or expansion, but I know some would be unfeasible unless it’s a new game. And maybe that is something to consider if there is a Battle brothers 2 or a new game with similar engine.

    -Fleeing:
    Retreating Is necessary, yet terrible annoying, and is probably the most grindy aspect of the game, where you are just doing work, just clicking your guys to retreat with no real decisions for a few minutes. I could expand on this but I
    already did on this thread. http://battlebrothersgame.com/forums/forum/game-discussion/#

    -Information:
    I know some people enjoy not knowing the game mechanics, I’m ok to having an option to remove tooltips. But for many people having so many mechanics hidden in the game is really annoying and unsatisfying. Should I hire the ratman or the fishmeran? Well it’s whatever because I have no idea of the consequences of either. I should know what stats it gives, what % chance of different events gives, etc. I need to have a way to evaluate my decisions, instead of making decisions blindly. I use right now the wiki for that, But I don’t think i should be playing with the wiki open to do this, and is very annoying to search for all this in the wiki.

    The game loves to not inform you about what your options are, and just throw them out there for you to do and hope for the best and it’s really not great imo.
    I know tip to toe all mechanics of games like Master of orion and Heroes of might and magic, and yet the game are to this day a blast to play. I play a lot of board games, where i know all the mechanics and still a blast to play. I don’t think you need to hide the mechanics to make games interesting.

    -Quick UI:
    Changing guys from reserve to team is a little annoying, i wish there were buttons or functions where you just switch guys clothes, or just a “strip down” button. Doing the action of stripping the injured guy on the back and clothing the front guy, is really annoying, specially late, when you have a constant cycle of guys.

    -Pausing when you town:
    It’s annoying to have to quickly press the spacebar every time i leave town, it should be automatic.

    -Combat ui:
    I need more easily information in combat, there is a space bottom left for it. I want to see my guy, perks, abilities, and most important THE SECONDARY WEAPON, it’s greatly frustrating havign to open the inventory all the time, which covers my whole screen, to check those stats.

    Something crucial in this respect is bleeding. I often get surprised by my guy bleeding, there should be a big Blood spot on his head or on the NEW UI or somewhere, isntead of me having to remember which of the 30 potential injuries are actually bleeds and their tiny icon.

    Initiative is very confusing, is very hard to predict when my guys are gonna act next turn, how often I did set up that spearwall to not use since my guy would act first next turn. I should be able to see the whole initiative list and make more clear why i move first or last

    Hit to chance. I see things that help for me to hit or miss, but I’m not given exact numbers, I should be given those numbers, again refer to Knights of the chalice for that.

    I need a grid, sometimes is hard for me to visualize what terrain is passable or not, I refer to battle for wesnoth with this, where with a single button you can see a grid with different colored squared, that show me control zones, impassable terrain, passable terrain etc.

    -Combat log:
    The combat log is really poor, it barely tells me anything. I strongly recommend checking Knights of the chalice Battle log, it precisely inform you of what really happend there, and is great tool to learn the game.

    Extra Combat actions. Too often i know i want to wait with all muy guys, or end the turn with all my guys, and it’s annoying having to wait and click the 12 times. Plz give me a WAIT ALL or FINISH ALL button. Also a retreat button, sometimes a Guy is so injured i know i just want him to run, let me put him on “run forest run” mode and never ask me again what i want him to do. I just want him to run.

    -City feedback:
    The information on the cities is not clear, I want to be able to hover a city and tell me what is annexed to it, instead i have to be slowly monitoring the surroundings, which is annoying.
    It would be nice to be able to see what potential contracts i have open there. I don’t mind if the game mechanic where that once you leave a city , you lose the potential to accept the contract, but given it’s not like that, you should be able to check what the contract was about.

    -In the world map I want to be given the information of the average/expected time from point X to Y, and include the food costs.

    -Weapon swap souldn’t be permanent, I battle I often switch back to secondary weapons, and then i have to switch back all weapons, worse is when sometimes i forget and i start the game with secondary weapons.

    -Give the option to AI to autoflee for all guys not in a zone of control, it would save a lot of annoying time/grinding chasing down guys that in most cases you can’t catch up, and would not me having to do a lot of tactical positioning
    in the off chance he decides to comeback and fight (and it has happend)

    -I think it’s really dumb that your first attempt to haggle the price of contract, never backfires, At this point is just a routine to auto ask for me.

    -Not too important, but I find weird you never need to sleep, and making a camp doesn’t seem really that much beneficial, unless im strongly missing something.

    ***
    Personal Suggestions that I feel are more of a different kind than the previous one, because they are more extreme, more personal or bigger.

    * Have a Demo: I was strongly suggested this game , again and again, and looking at videos didn’t convince me, I decided to pirate the game to give it a go, and I loved it, so I bought it. But I don’t understand why it’s not worth to have a demo, you encourage peopel to pirate your game to give it a shot.

    * Have a 2x, 3x faster mode: I don’t know how long would be to have a run, given that you say final crisis is the soft ending of a run. given my time right now and how long it seems to be, i suspect is on the realm of 60-80. I think it’s too long, for a game meant to be replayed. You don’t need it to be so long to have a game with an inmersive experience, a large map of master of orion takes me 8-12 hours and I have that experience. Even a run of Knights of the chalice, is
    around 15-20 hours. And Given my experience with the game, I think it’s gonna feel a little too long if it takes twice as much, and my current run is 16 hours in.
    Talking with many people trying to suggest the game, they run when they hear a run may take 60-80 hours, yet they would totally be interested if they could do a run in a lower time. I think a game like this should have a run of around 20-30 hours tops. Maaaaybbe sometimes 40 hours. I could explain exactly why this is important, but it would be a an article by itself.
    Maybe it’s possible to have a mode where everything happens 3 times as fast. 3x time of experience, 3x fast travel, peolpe consume food 3x times as fast, events happens 3 times as often, etc etc.
    If it’s too late for current battle brothers, I really wish to see a very similar game with a similar engine, where runs are a lot shorter. So hoping for that in battle brothers 2 or any other game with this engine.

    * Right now Different guys have different World map effect based on their events, which for the most part are unknown, but it would be nice to have more world map effects or even perks. For example A messenger, allows you to travel slightly faster, or a blacksmith allows you be more efficient in the use of tools to repair.
    Right now that kind of it’s on the game but is terrible random and mostly unknowable to the player.

    *This is a super personal thing, I know, but I would like to see more fantasy, not only from a thematic point of view, but I like to have in games all the kind of option magic gives, like buffs, teleports, magic walls, etc etc. Also would like to be able to have wolfriders and orcs myself.Again, prolly not for battle brothers, but if the game is successful I would pay premium for a similar game with a more fantastic background, and I’m sure a lot of other people would. I know that it would make the game more complex and probably woudl be harder to do.

    I think that’s it, and with al this said, this is probably as of right now, one of my top 10 single players games I ever played in my lifetime and I’ve played LOTS of games. So thanks a lot.

    #21538

    Namespace
    Participant

    Hey.
    I think viewing Battlebrothers as a roquelike is a mistake. Sure, it can feel that way if you wipe at day 10, but that is because the balancing of early – mid – and lategame is terrible.
    Early game (let’s say day 1-50) is really difficult because world map spawns are sometimes waaaaaaaay above your level (Necrosavants at day20, 4-6 marksmen with crossbows). Then early midgame ~day 50-100 is still difficult if you had some setbacks early on but if you played perfectly you will start steam rolling any enemy that you face. Midgame would be around day 100-250 (1st and 2nd crisis maybe). This is basically where you will be invincible because none of the enemies aside from geists and orcs maybe pose a real threat. At around day 300 the late-game starts and the game sets you up against stuff like 6 honor guards and 20 legionaires or 12+ orc warriors, a warlord and 10+ young/zerkers. Or 3 Master Archers, 2 Hedge Knights, 2 Leaders and a Swordmaster. This is when even experienced soldiers can die again and the game becomes frustrating once more (but also very exciting).

    Anyways. I like a lot of your suggestions for more QOL improvements.
    I especially agree that we do need more transparency about game mechanics. We really need more information. I remember buying HOMM2 and 3. They had these little guide books with them explaining game and combat mechanics. Even if you buy them today on GOG you will get these as PDFs.
    Don’t get me wrong. I do like trial and error concerning different strategies. The thing is it’s really hard to get to develop these tactics or strategies if you don’t know the game mechanics.

    TLDR; “Late” game crises are happening in the early- to mid-game and balancing is off. BB is no roquelike as it takes forever to level your troopers and roque likes usually have very short run. BB is more like skyrim where you spend a ton of time exploring the world and leveling up imo.

    #21539

    Waterd
    Participant

    I can’t see the stages of the game as you, because the devs designed the game for it to soft end after the first crisis , so after the first crisis i plan to retire, and that’s how i see it as rougelike. I really hope the game do not last more than 150 days, I think i plan to retire after 150 days, no matter what.

    #21540

    Waterd
    Participant

    But I can see from the pov that this is not a rouglike that even if i plan to retire on the end of the first lategame crisis. The game is still a little too big for me. Maybe I should retire not at the end of the lategame crisis, but when it starts, maybe my company will go “oh crap, things going to hell, time to retire”

    I really enjoyed the first 60-80 days, but the game is starting to slow and get dense. Fights of 30/40 units are not fun again and again, thanks to the big battle map, and turn based system. That is the beauty of a system, like the ones Master of orion or Heroes of might and magic. You never have more than 12/14 units in the battlefield, and they all start on the face of each other. Having to play this massive battles again and again, becomes very dense very fast. I think a lot of the mechanics of the game are great, but the game should be a little faster, shorter and smaller for my taste. I hope in the future there is a mod/expansion/sequel which accomplishes that.

    #21541

    Namespace
    Participant

    I totally get what you mean. There is little enjoyment in those huge battles. It is also the reason why shield bros are so useless in the late game. You simply need the damage output from 2-handers and maybe duelists, archers, polearms to deal with those numbers.
    The game becomes an endless grind for crowns to minmax brothers and equipment once you reach the late midgame and will feel slow at times. I don’t really mind the grind since im used to diablo 2 standards :).

    #21555

    Waterd
    Participant

    Based on what I read on RPG forums and im talking with a friend that tried the game on my recomendation. It seems the progress of the game is more than a personal problem.

    I think the first 30 days of the game are great, 30-60 are ok, after day 60 it starts to go downhill and starts to be a lot more boring.

    I see many opinion on why it is, but I tihnk the most basic answer is that the game gets too big.

    When you are having 6-8 guys with 1 or 2 guys in reserve, with each guy having mostly primary weapons and 2 or 3 perks, the game is of decent size.

    But once you have 12 guys with 6-8 on reserve on constant cycle, with most having secondary weapons, wtih items and 6-7 Perks, it’s starts to get annoying to manage, not only outside the battle, but mostly inside the battle.

    The ui doesnt help, I have to be remembering who was the guy with the rotation skill, who brougth the nets, who has the dog, who has the banaids.
    All In massive 12 batles with allies vs 24 enemies, that slowly drags in 45 minute battles. Where I have to be considering the perks, secondary abilities, the stats of each of my 12 guys that I don’t remember well because they are part of a 18-20 guy batallion.

    It all adds up to too much and stops being fun, and feeling like work.

    If there is intention/will to discuss solutions, I could try to bring some ideas, but so far that is my experience, I’m on day 85 now, crisis didn’t even start yet, and I don’t feel like continuing, however I feel it would be interesting to start over to enjoy the early game but when i realize there is no fun ENDPOINT, I think it’s gonna be enough for me until something changes.
    I think there are great mechanics and system in place for a great experience from start to finish. But right now while the start is amazing, the experience starts to downgrade, I think It’s one of the problems of starting to design an experience is that is so long in a single run.

    #21557

    Namespace
    Participant

    If there is intention/will to discuss solutions, I could try to bring some ideas, but so far that is my experience, I’m on day 85 now, crisis didn’t even start yet, and I don’t feel like continuing, however I feel it would be interesting to start over to enjoy the early game but when i realize there is no fun ENDPOINT, I think it’s gonna be enough for me until something changes.

    Well I am all up for discussing solutions. Personally, I think it would be a good idea to have some kind of slider at the map generation that lets us choose how frequent crises come. I don’t want my crises to start before day 150. You’re complaining that they didnt start at day85. Let us choose when they start. It’s a singleplayer game and as such there is absolutely no reason to force your design desicions upon us.
    I can just hope for mod-support that will allow us to play a game that we love and enjoy and is tailored to our own specific wants and needs.

    Anyways, if you go for maybe one more ingame week the crisis will definitely start. I think they usually start around day90.

    Generally though, I think the game has a very slow progression in mind. At around day90 you probably have only seen about 50-60% of the units there are. For me, there is no better feeling than successfully daggering a Hedge Knight with a Greataxe, knowing that he can pretty much one-shot any of my guys if I make a mistake. If I manage to pull it off though, I save probably 15k crowns or so (30k if he has a named weapon) and is such a good feeling.
    Sadly, Hedge Knights only show up at around day 150+. Same for Master Archers, Swordmasters and probably Orc Warlords. And the next hurdle is around day300 where they start to show up in numbers and actually pose a threat again.

    TLDR; Again, I really like Min-Maxing and rolling for the perfect brother with perfect base stats and talents and traits, equipping them with famed armors and weapons etc. You seem to rather play with what you get and have an immersive experience. This is why we should get more customization options to make the game suit our individual wants and needs.

    I know you won’t like that, but I would recommend you play the game on Veteran or Beginner if you don’t like the (really) slow pace of expert. There is practically no difference aside from lower income and a little bit smaller enemy party size (which should suit you). I really enjoy the harsh pace of expert and how difficult it gets. If you are already used to the expert pace, even veteran will feel way too easy to you though.

    #21559

    Waterd
    Participant

    Yeah I would like to have something called Roguelike mode or Speedrun moode. Or whatever. A mode wich is intended to be replayed and played in 30 hours average.

    In this mode Renown, Gold, Experience, are gained 2 times as fast. Reputation effects are 2 times as powerful.

    Team size reduced to 10, the Reserve space reduced to 4. And difficulty instead of be scaled by bigger number, is scaled by just having more powerful units in the enemy team.

    And i think the most important part make battle maps 3 times smaller.

    Basically the gameplay should be organized about being about 10 hours of pre noble missions, 10 hours post noble missions, and 10 hours of final crisis.

    I don’t know exactly how it is decided the final crisis to come, but it should come at a SPECIFIC DAY, should you be prepared or not.

    #21594
    EdenGenesis
    EdenGenesis
    Participant

    Sorry Waterd, but I do really hope they won’t reduce the team size to 10! I do really like managing a huge team rather, it’d be better to have the choice to set our team the number of mercenaries we want at the beginning of the game just like when we decide if there will be late crisis or not like in the game setting of the game “Don’t Starve” where you can manage many event of the game by deciding weather they will happen in the game or not.

    In future update, I’d love to be able to have ride horses for my mercenaries to get from point A to point B faster than now. I feel like it take a lifetime to go from one city to another, but unlike others, I really like the map size and wouldn’t mind having a bigger one with more cities and possibilities.

    I like the cities’ design, it recalls me Darkest Dungeon’s city. I would love to add more possibilities within the city such as visiting the lord’s house.

    It’s be great to create more dialogue between team member, I liked the way you added dialogue already, but I’d like to add possibility to talk anytime or at camp time with my team mate and it could modify their mood in good or bad for next battles.

    I’ll create a new post to add my list of suggestion.

    'Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars.'

    #21653

    Namespace
    Participant

    It’s be great to create more dialogue between team member, I liked the way you added dialogue already, but I’d like to add possibility to talk anytime or at camp time with my team mate and it could modify their mood in good or bad for next battles.

    I think this would be an amazing addition. Just to add more character to my guys. I can’t really identify with them right now. I suppose that’s not such a bad thing as I don’t usually care if they die (unless they have gozu stats).

    As for the team size. You misunderstood Waterd’s post asking for an additional “roguelike” mode that would scale differently to pick up the pace of the game.

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