Discussion in 'News & Announcements' started by Dr. Hates, Mar 19, 2012.

By Dr. Hates on Mar 19, 2012 at 9:27 PM
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    Dr. Hates Jerk.

    I came across Namco’s official patch notes while sorting through the “incoming” pile here at the Hate Speech News Desk, so this week I’m setting aside my regularly scheduled diatribe in favor of the hot-button issue. Of course, this may also be my last column ever, too. Like many of you, I took one look at the information in the patch notes and realized that life is no longer worth living.

    My perfect, beautiful, wonderful game—one about which I’ve never complained, ever—is now irreparably ruined and soiled. As such, my plan for the day is simple: post this article, make arrangements for bequeathing my cherished collections of celebrity bobbleheads and Yu-Gi-Oh cards, and then driving my car off of the Golden Gate Bridge so I can go out like a boss.

    Actually, wait a second, everybody! THIS JUST IN: as it turns out, losing your mind over this patch actually isn’t the brilliant plan it seems to be. I guess it’s just all in how you choose to read it . . .

    Dealing With Game Updates (And Other Indescribable Traumas)

    In On Death and Dying, Elizabeth Kubler-Ross outlines five stages of grief: Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and Acceptance. We’re all fancy-ass gamers, though, with high-impact, fast paced lifestyles, which means we don’t have time for all that. In its place, I offer a three-step model. It’s fast, it’s sleek, and it’s even a little stylish. We’re talking about the Ferrari of coping mechanisms here, people, so I implore you to at least take it for a test drive.

    To help make things easier, I'll be providing you with some soothing images, too.

    Step 1: Ditch Your Preconceptions

    It’s easy to lose track of the fact that fighting games hinge entirely upon relative strengths and weaknesses, but it’s true. Nothing is strong or weak in a vacuum. What do you call a character with an i3 unblockable mid that does 99% life in a game where every other character has that same move, but it insta-kills? Unplayable trash. Likewise, it’s easy to look at individual changes, for good or ill, and jump to all manner of erroneous conclusions. The upcoming patch isn’t just nerfing or buffing your favorite move or your favorite character; it’s changing the entire game ecosystem in literally hundreds of tiny ways. Bearing that in mind, it’s important to take precautions against fixating on one or two things to the exclusion of everything else when no single element is as important as the changes in their totality.

    Step 2: Reserve Judgment

    This ought to be obvious, but then again, the Internet ought to facilitate intelligent, reasoned debate instead of just gay jokes and increasingly baroque porn. In any case, it’s wholly unreasonable for anyone to get too high or too low without spending a great deal of time digging deeply into these changes, which is patently impossible before they’ve even been patched into the game. Think for a moment about how much the hive-mind’s opinion has shifted in less than two months. Consider the moving targets that have been tier placements for characters like Viola, Pyrrha Omega, Alpha Patroklos, Nightmare, Astaroth, Maxi, and so on. Games take time to mature. Matchups evolve, nuances arise, and things ultimately shift in effectiveness as we continue refining our gameplay and learning new things. Everyone therefore needs to step back, put your dismay in check, and get back to the business of making things as hard as possible for the other guy. More to the point, most people aren’t playing at a level which really allows for them to make well-reasoned, objective assessments of balance issues. Even the best of us are still deep in the research process. Hell, even if you’re in contention to win every major you enter, it’s still smartest not to blame losses on your character.

    Here, have a scented candle. They're so relaxing!

    Step 3: Consider the Big Picture

    More important than any single balance change, this update signals a number of larger positive elements about which we should be getting excited. First of all, fuzzy guard, step guard, and backdash canceling are going to be out (by the way, shout outs to the fervent cadre of mouth breathers who insisted that step guard was an intentional feature), which is great news. These were glitches that had the potential to seriously undermine high-level play, and it’s good to see that Namco recognized them as such and took care of business. In fact, all of the system changes look pretty darn good. Second, Namco released a comprehensive list of patch notes, which is relatively unusual for 3D games. This kind of transparency is a very good thing for us not only because it’ll save us a lot of headaches, but because it indicates, once again, a willingness to interface with the community. Lastly, the fact that they’re patching at all is a good thing. Everything thus far points to Namco’s long-term commitment to improving gameplay balance, so it strikes me as exceedingly foolish to think that this patch will be the only revision we’ll see. Everyone needs to keep playing, keep learning, and so on. If your character was unduly hit, have a little faith that it’ll be addressed somewhere down the road rather than going completely nuclear and spamming the boards with your cries of injustice (what would Pat say about that, anyway?). The confluence of an invested dev team and living in an age of downloadable updates means that SCV is a living, changing thing. It’s imperative that we remain open-minded toward balance revisions rather than unceremoniously shitting in the laps of people who are trying to make our game better.

    Zen rock gardens are always nice when it's time to de-stress.

    So there you have it. Embrace those three steps of grief management and see if you don’t come away feeling a little better. We still have the luxury of playing backseat designer all we want, but it’s best to do it in a way that won’t put anybody at risk for bursting blood vessels. But wait, what’s that? You say it’s still not good enough? You say that game companies should make things better solely through buffs and never with nerfs? I am so, so glad you mentioned that . . .

    Remember that strength and weakness are relative values contingent upon the overall game ecosystem, as mentioned above. While issues relating to raw damage output could potentially be solved exclusively with buffs, those are hardly the whole story. Sometimes it’s not necessarily a move’s damage which makes it problematic, but instead its properties, such as guard meter damage, pushback, combo-ability, counterhit properties, and so on. In the case of a move like Leixia’s WS B BE, for example, buffing the rest of the cast does nothing to change the fact that that move is really, really nasty. Yes, you could potentially give every character an option which would lessen that move’s impact or stuff it entirely , but then you end up introducing a great many more variables into an equation already so complex it can’t be adequately solved. Moreover, even if designers weren’t committed to handling counters on a move by move basis and thus decided to simply dole out more borderline-unfair stuff which could easily break countless more matchups, would anyone be any happier for it? It’s far more efficient and reasonable to remove a little bit of the offending move’s bite, which constitutes a de-facto buff for the entire cast.

    Woops! I think my fingers slipped and I ended up searching for "mindless, gut-wrenching terror." Honest typo.

    All right, enough of my soapbox for today. Once more, just calm down, be reasonable, and be ruthless. So they changed your character? Big deal. That just means you have to find an even cheaper way to mash people’s heads in.


    Take a deep breath.

    Oh, and if you’re actually excited about any of the upcoming revisions, let me know.

    Gatsu, Sp1d3r, AzyG4Lyfe and 28 others like this.


Discussion in 'News & Announcements' started by Dr. Hates, Mar 19, 2012.

    1. IdleMind
      The one thing we can't patch is PS's archaic mindset that execution barriers are justification for silly unbalanced things (like twister into twister)... but they are learning. It seems they have accepted the "if it's possible, people will do it" mindset to a degree, at least with regard to the step-g issues. That's developer evolution.

      Very happy with the patch, especially the backdash-G nerf. I was kind of tired of playing the same Namco engine for 15 years with no real considerable change in paradigm (or Developer thought process), and boom, SC5 comes along and changes everything for the better.
      Wolfgang, banes49, Zyrusticae and 2 others like this.
    2. AKNova7
      Guy who wrote this article is fucking stupid. It's called do a horizontal once in a while, it doesn't TC for long. Maybe you should reaction grab the brave edge. That works well too. Stop crying about WR B BE when you don't really know much about it at all. People like you got it nerfed. It only did 83 damage in it's best combo, unless you spent 150%, in which you deserve over 100 damage. Yes. Let's make the (now) LEAST damaging character in the game even weaker. Cool story, bro. Alpha didn't get touched.
    3. Age_of_Truth
      My work here is done. WOOHOO!
      Ok sorry I shut up from now on. No salt ppl please. A lot of the patch stuff was great, especially the system mechanics, and some of the nerfs were definitely called for. I was just sad cos all my characters got so many.

      Get ready for Wednesday, new stuff to find!
    4. WuHT
      now this is quality posting right here
      Zyrusticae, DrakeAldan and LP like this.
    5. AKNova7
      Oh, I'm sorry, you're right, that was a little bad. Here, let me fix my mistake.

      There. I stand by everything else I said.
      VithaR likes this.
    6. WuHT
      If we're judging by the quality of what you've said, you're basically standing knee deep in bullshit.

      When is 1/3 life damage combo deserving of the descriptive word "only" ?

      You neglected to mention that while the move isn't exactly fast, its super safe and does amazing guard burst damage. Additionally it has amazing tech-step (like Ivy 214B good) and has useable TC frames , and even has GI frames to boot. How much more does someone need to know about the move to realize its damn strong ?

      That reaction grab was a pretty stupid suggestion, because you could have at least said "reaction QS" and it would be more believable given its 31 frames to connect.

      Sheesh what kinda greedy clown are you to want leixia to have high damage as another one of her strengths ?
    7. damn-I-Suck
      All things considered, I like the patch.

      My only gripes are that I think just about everyone was expecting BUFFS for Sieg, not nerfs, and they didn't fix his whiff issues. *sigh*

      You say deal with it? fine. You know how I deal with it? Drop Sieg for good and stick with NM :). Sieg has now inherited Rock sc4 tier bracket.
    8. AKNova7
      Because the move is so strong that, quite literally that move alone gives her high damage and a reason to be nerfed. Seriously? I can understand the guard burst damage, fine, but the other stuff was so unnecessary, it's just plain stupid. Without WR B/WR B BE, Leixia is just a weak version of Alpha with even less range. The fact that you have so much problem with WR B BE means you're not wailing on wake-up enough with moves that will catch/interrupt rising moves. Seriously, Leixia doesn't even do much damage compared to the other characters. With Viola, without using meter, she has a combo that hits for 78. Out of a standard launcher. I'm not saying that I WANT her to do more damage, but the simple number of chances you got against a Leixia player to blow her up for stepping, and the bonuses that you could get for blowing up a stepping Leixia player, compared to their loss of meter, AND negation of damage, she didn't need a nerf. At all. People just need to learn to learn strategy. Stop doing so many Verticals, and maybe you won't get dodged so often.

      Nothing was wrong with her, now the people that play her, might as well play Alpha, pretty much just as safe, and now very well might have the same TS as her by a simple QS. I'll have to see how high back kick pop up is now, but it's still no excuse. She's already arguably the LEAST damaging character in the game, why would you do something to hurt her evasion game too? And that's not including the OTHER nerfs she got.
    9. Heaton
      A haiku:
      Sandman, Zyrusticae, Solo and 4 others like this.
    10. WuHT
      Sinceyou worded your previous opinion so strong don't be surprised people call you out on it.

      Comparing her to one of the top characters in the game is always going to mean you want more buffs. 20 other characters wish they were as powerful as alpha pat.
      And lexia rightfully shouldn't.

      Why are you comparing pre patch to post-patch ? Relatively, every character (except for 4) got nerfed to various degrees, so the collective effect isn't as severe.

      I don't play either but its obvious that lexia has much better step containing tools and better guard burst then the almighty pat. You should take your own advice and try to stick to your strengths instead of attempting to trade shot-for-shot.

      Take a look at the blue pentagon charts whenever you choose leixia and run your eyes to the "power" axis. You'll notice that leixia is the lowest out of any character, so its intentional.

      This article should exactly be for people like you. I don't know if reading it again would do you any good though considering your posting history:.
      I'm just going to give you the benefit of the doubt and mark this down as temporary lapse of sanity and on a good day you're more reasonable.
    11. ChaosK
      She has arguably the weakest damage because she is arguable the best at pressuring. Compare that to someone like sieg, who basically should one-hit kill by that logic.
    12. AKNova7
      Rightfully? Give me a break, what gives Alpha the right to be so good? He, of all people, get very minor nerfs, and a BUFF to Shade Thrust (New Version of it.) Come on, you can't be that blind.

      Not as severe? They took away, nearly every way for Leixia to get any kind of damage above 60 without performing a CE. According to Ring, who claims the patch is available in Europe, says WR B BE, BT B+K, 3B does 58 damage now. Compared to the 83 before. This is crazy.

      They nerfed a lot of the Guard Burst, that's no problem, but then they went even FURTHER than that. I mean, cool, she has two things better than him. He wins in: Priority, Damage, Range, Combo Length, Combo Damage, and now since they nerfed what they did, probably safety too.

      Stop being such a tool. Leixia has no damage, and relied on evasiveness, guard burst, safety, and speed, three of which they nerfed. I understand exactly what he was trying to say, but bringing Leixia into this is just ridiculous. Of all examples, going out of the way to mention WR B BE is ridiculous. Needless to say, there were bigger problems to deal with. Alpha being one of them. If Leixia got nerfed, he deserved to be nerfed with her.

      Guard burst and step killing being a reason alone to nerf somebody. I've never heard so much BS in my life. Stop being such a tool, and think about the game overall, would you?
    13. AKNova7
      I don't disagree with her damage being low, I disagree with the nerfs she received BECAUSE her damage is low. I'm not asking for a damage buff, in fact, they didn't say it, but she actually got a damage nerf. Her staple WR B BE, BT B+K, 3B combo is apparently, 58 damage now because of stun scaling. Wonderful. All I have to say about her damage, is, compared to SC4, the damage in this game is much higher, and here's Leixia doing even less damage than her mother in SC4. Come on, now. Everyone knows to pressure people, you have to take risks yourself. And when you do, there's a nice chance of eating a counter hit. Apparently Natsu's allowed to 4A+B someone for a third of a bar for breathing wrong while being just as fast as Leixia, but Leixia has damage from a BRAVE EDGE and step-killing and she has to be nerfed? Uggh. People.
    14. BeastEG
      So far I like what I see, but I'll reserve judgement until the game gets a chance to breath with the new patch. Kudos to Namco and PS for getting on top of balancing the game this quickly. Hopefully, we'll get out of the patching phase (meaning all the patches necessary to make the game perfect) fast enough to have the best version ever.
    15. WuHT
      Please quote me where I said he deserves a buff. Your problem is you're reaching too much into comments. The thing you should have gotten from my advice to you is that 20 other characters are in the same boat as you so stop acting like you're the only character with nerfs.
      My main lost his main poke (with BE just for comparison's sake) from 80 to now approx 44ish. You don't honestly think leixia is the only character nerfed do you ? If you like combo heavy characters, there are other characters more up your alley.
      Again, thats what most other characters have to deal with too.
      If thats what it'll take to repair you.
      Her speed for moves that she actually relies on to be fast, have not really changed. So I dont' get where you are drawing this blanket conclusion.
      Its a pretty good example of an obvious overpowered move. You know how it's overpowered ? The fact that you're so dependent on it because you can't even think about other ways to pull out a win. When one move dominantes your playstyle so much, it is worth addressing.
      First agreeable thing you've said, except its not "needless to say". I always thought you were honestly just whining about leixia for the last 20 minutes.
      I'll stop being a tool when you start being reasonable. I read your comments exactly as they were typed, because I dont' want to jump to conclusions and post about stuff I don't know about. If you meant to say alpha pat should have been nerfed more, then you should have said so earlier instead of telling people to "grab on reaction" against leixia's wrB BE.
      ChaosK likes this.
    16. AKNova7
      I didn't mean that you said he deserves a buff, he just got a buff. Which is a comment about how ass backwards this game's balancing is so far. Second of all, I still think my point is valid here, that this patch was absolutely ridiculous, because Raphael simply didn't need to be nerfed. The BE poke, you mean the B BE from prep? You can duck punish everything in that stance anyway if you know Prep is coming...seriously, Namco just got it wrong.

      Furthermore, I do know how to pull out a win without that move, I've just always played a very evasive style. I played X as a primary sub in SC4, and I even used the super unsafe and duckable version of Great-Wall in that game. To evasive players, WR B BE was a godsend, and now the most unique and best stepping we have took not just one, not two, not three, but four nerfs. (Step Speed, Guard Burst, Safety, Combo Damage). How can I not be upset when big problems were left un-dealt with, and smaller problems like this were overreacted so much to? What's worse, is they nerfed the non-BE version too if I remember correctly. Even though it was -16, and didn't do that much damage either, not like it was supposed to. I thought it was fine the way it was.

      Also, I agree, many characters were nerfed, but few nerfed as hard as her. I guess I can sulk with the Maxi and Tira players, but still. I mean, think about it, even Kayane said something on her page regarding her sadness and disappointment of Leixia's nerfs. When a tournament player, that places frequently takes the time to talk about it, it makes you wonder, just a tad bit. I can look at the game optimistically, I'm not upset just about Leixia, I'm upset that this is how the developers think the game needs to be balanced, even though HUGE issues have been left unaddressed.

      Furthermore, where's the buff to the jump system? I'm pretty sure Unblockable Ninja Bombs were quite jumpable in the last game on wake-up.
    17. WuHT
      Since you seem to only play short range characters, the backstep guard nerf is a huge buff that you should consider.

      Jump attacks were intentionally discouraged per the project soul team (because of the random properties that occur when being the airborne character is hit). Jump attacks does the job well for me on wakeup when I see natsu doing the fiery start up animation.
    18. AKNova7
      Funny enough, the list of my characters is outdated. I don't play Natsu seriously, though I could I believe if I wanted to, two days before the patch notes came out, I actually picked up Ivy because someone tried to tell me she has no potential. (I still have a love for playing Seong-Mina, so I play Ivy similar to the Mina I never had). Tira, I don't play her seriously anymore either, though, similar to Natsu, could if I wanted to. So, actually, I'm a Leixia main, who subs Ivy. BDC removal won't hurt Ivy too terribly, but for Leixia, I'd THINK it'd be decent, to get hits in, but even with all the Maxi nerfs, he benefitted there, his counter hit damage is....Good lord.

      About the way you imput your jump attacks on Wake-Up, do you input 8A_B_K, 8A_B_K or G, 8A_B_K? Also, for jumping buffs, I meant neutral jump, as in the manual one, like, you remember how you'd hold 8G and your character kept jumping in SC4? Like that. With higher damage from bomb related mistakes, the jump system is missed.
    19. WuHT
      8G jumps slower than actually doing an aerial attack (odd) but you may need to verify it. You don't want to do 8G from the ground cuz you'll tech in that direction. You should hit G (delayed a bit) then immediately 8K or 8B. Maybe i'm describing it wrong so try the soul calibur tactics subforum.
    20. AKNova7
      Will do. Thanks for the help.

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