About Chaos Wastes

STORY

I prefer story driven games. That’s why I find waves bland. CW is better in this regard, but not by much.
Standard maps have a briefing, we know why our heroes are there, why they fight. In CW, we know only the trailer. The whole thing looks like our heroes search the support of the chaos gods who put them on the test. If they succeed, they give their blessing in the form of nice chaos frames.
Actually it doesn’t require much effort to make little stories around maps. Often it’s just a few sentences in form of dialogs.
The ending should have 1-2 sentences what actually happened. Especially at the citadel. Okay, they want to talk to the gods. Why don’t they? And there should be an answer. If nothing happens, the heroes should tell they are disappointed or something.
There are many reused map parts. The heroes should recognize and comment them loudly. This way those details would become part of the story and they wouldn’t be just reused assets.

MAPS

The maps are good. I like the search for coins. And I like the concept change, the party should divide to look around for loot many times.
You certainly made a lot of assets for the environment but new enemies would have been more important. When we play we focus on the enemies not on the environment. If you make 20 new houses they have less effect on the game experience than a single new enemy type. Even the current enemies should be look a bit different when they worship other gods, not nurgle. At least the colors if nothing else.
The lack of books is good. The monster chests is very gamey, but it’s okay for me.
Finally maps where I can fight beastmen. They are uncommon in the base game.
I like the idea of random maps, its essence is very similar to quick plays. You could use this in general maps, too. For example there is Fort Brachsenbrücke with two routes at the start and after the river. I like when there are different routes. It would be even better if the style of the alternatives are different. For example one route is between rocks but the other is through a village. The goal is the same, to get to the fort but the way there could be very different. You could make many maps using this scheme. First part is the travel to the objective area, the second part is the objective, and these could be randomly paired.
The orange and the red upgrade options should be a bit more colorful. It’s harder to see the colors. Maybe even the green could be a bit greener. The blue is okay.

CRASHES

It’s hard to tell from memory, but about 10-15% of my games crashed. With that much crashes the playing time is too long. Hopefully you will solve these problems.

BOON PROGRESSION

The funny and OP talents and talent combos are cool however there are many underwhelming talents or disadvantageous talents. I think weak talents should be dropped entirely. There are times when I get 4 option to buy from and all are underwhelming. And this is not rare.
It’s very disappointing to get dash ult for Shade and it feels like a curse instead of a boon. The short teleport forward with push is the same case, especially with handmaiden. They are okay if someone gets them intentionally but not as a random boon from an altar. Natural bond is the same case but it’s not that disappointing in CW because many players might have medkits.
I think lesser but stronger traits would be better. Sometimes it’s not even possible to remember that many talents. And there is no time to check them. Nobody would wait me reading during the game and they cannot be checked between maps over the “chessboard”.
When playing XCOM2, it was a cool feature when our soldiers got a single skill randomly from other classes. So this randomization is a familiar feeling. What if a Shade could get asrai alacricity or serrated shots for example? Just to remain within the the classes of the same hero.

ITEM PROGRESSION

Dropping the starting gear doesn’t feel good. The decrease in efficiency is immediately felt.

Why didn’t you simply drop the hero power mechanics? Getting +10% damage and cleave per item level (or whatever) would be far easier to understand.
Punishing the purchase of lower level items is strange. I mean the costs. It doesn’t take long to realize improving every single step is unnecessary.

Random weapons could be more interesting but many heroes have 1-2 underperforming weapons which makes this a risky option. The other thing is weapons and THP generation talents correlate. So with an unlucky new weapon the THP generation may plummet.
If there would be a chance to keep the original one I would use this option more often.

SUMMARY

I don’t like the gear drop. I play this game mode for the new maps, the variety.

6 Likes

I’m really enjoying the Chaos Wastes. The randomness can create unexpected synergies that makes your build OP, or you can get some talents or random weapons that are more of a hindrance than a boon (a really dislike getting the charge on push talent, especially on all the vertiginous paths you find in the wastes). But this is all great, even the detrimental boons, and adds to the game play.

I think we need more randomness in the game. The chests of trials are already boring - i’d like to see more variety in what spawns when they are activated, so it’s a bit more like twitch and you can get a squadron of assassins, or the suicide rats, or a chaos patrol, or 2 bosses.

I’d also like to make the random weapon pick ups more exciting by letting you get ANY weapon in the game. No more class or character boundaries. So in the wastes I could have a GK with a halberd or a waystalker with a troll hammer torpedo. This would increase the number of potential OP or underperforming builds massively and enhance the potential rewards and potential risks of using the random upgrades. I think this would just increase the fun.

I like the new maps a lot, especially the sense of verticality and the branching paths. I hope these principles are incorporated into the Darktide levels, with maybe a zip line so that snipers can find a perch from which to rain down destruction (no invisibility on ult huntsman mechanics).

I too would like a bit more narrative in the game, but I don’t feel that the wastes is the place for it. Because of all the gimmicky mechanics and stitched together locations the wastes doesn’t really feel like Warhammer to me. It’s just a madcap, trashy mode that’s a lot of fun. The standard maps are much more immersive. Save the narrative for those or for Taal’s Horn keep.

Anyway the +5 movement bonus should be +10 for completing certain maps, so it could be somewhat perceptible, and wouldn’t be so disappointing when we must have it for some reason.

And the enemies who release poison gas on death should be a bit less frequent in number. Not by very much, maybe by 30%. Unlike other damaging effects gas cannot be fully avoided.

And an idea. There might be a Slanesh mutator when we take damage by picking up coin.

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