Before I begin, I wish to congratulate Fatshark on their dedication to this IP. Not only that, but what they have made is both an amazing and unique experience, that needs to experienced. I think Fatshark has accomplished everything they set out to, e.g create a co op experience; with a compelling atmosphere. I also would like to preface this, by saying, that this is no way undervaluing Fatshark’s accomplishments. Consider it a mere critique of their design.
I am going to split this section into three main subsections; Skaven, Chaos, Patrols, and finally Bosses. Reason being, is that they deserve more depth, rather than a general critique.
Skaven, are by far the most generic enemy within the setting, luckily they managed to add chaos to the mix; thus shaking things up a bit. However, chaos too suffers from the same symptom, in that they quickly become generic; and lose all identity. Consider this, outside of the special units, what is the main difference between chaos and skaven? Personally, to me, both factions operate the same. Both factions use the same tactic, in that they swarm you. The only thing that really stood out between the two, was the sound queue that is played, when a horde spawns.
Skaven in general behave as they should, like skaven. So to summarize, they are fine. However, special units need to be relooked at. Specifically, hook rat, storm vermin, and assassin. For the record, Fatshark has finally addressed both the warpfire and flamethrower specials; so good on them. Many people have already said enough on the aforementioned units, so I wont go into as much detail. But, to reiterate, being able to ignore collision, and or having stupid thick armor; I’m looking at you shield vermin, is not fun.
As of me typing this, chaos behaves exactly like Skaven. In that they will always swarm you. Chaos, me thinks, should not behave like skaven. They should be far more scary and tough. I am not able to put my finger on it, but chaos just needs to be a bit tougher and intimidating.
I had an idea, of decreasing chaos troops, while increasing their strength. Basically less chaos, but make them more stronger. It is ludicrous that chaos troops, even with the gifts of the dark gods, are able to go down so easily; they die just like skaven. They shouldn’t be sliced like butter, they should be far more durable and stronger.
It pains me to say, but bosses are too simplistic and boring. Once you figure out the patterns, it’s always the same. Dodge, kite, and use bombs; or follow it up with a ult. There is no dynamic to a boss. The AI needs to able to counter players who are able to kite a boss, while having teammates attack it from behind. The AI needs to also be able to punish players who cheese the boss, by using ranged.
I believe both troll, and storm ogre, are decent attempts. For example, storm ogre will always try to isolate the team, forcing the fight to become dynamic, meaning players will always have to come up with different tactics to outsmart this menace. However, the fight is quickly trivialized, once you realize the flames don’t do that much damage, and you can cheese him.
Troll is also pretty interesting, in that his regen can completely change the dynamic of the fight. His range attacks can also isolate teammates, thus forcing the team consider different tactics while facing it. Again this fight is made trival, once you relize you can just use the same tactic. Get someone to kite him, while the team focuses him down. Or you can kite and range him to death. Thus enter cheese strats.
Chaos spawn, rat ogre, and the rest are flat out uninteresting. Both suffer from a boring design. In that they will always focus a singular person down, while the team whittles its health down. Thus enter cheese strats, how far can we abuse or exploit this AI flaw.
There is no way around this, patrols are not fun. However, not in that they are hard, but in that they are not as intimidating. First off, not enough troops patrol a map, meaning there is no sense of fear, urgency, or vigilance while traversing a map. This seriously needs to be looked at. I wish for the devs to consider the following; put multiple troops in a level, give each patrol a fixed route, or make it dynamic, and buff them.
Recent efforts at addressing the loot issues, are very appreciated. So don’t take this as me being entitled or whatever. Loot still needs more quality of life changes, and a couple of revisions. For starters most traits are not meaningful enough, and are generic. Reds, in general, are not unique enough to warrant such scarcity. Properties are uninspired and dull, adding minor changes to gameplay.
In short, loot fails to enhance the fun in gameplay. And instead, becomes a dull, boring, grind that gives you arbitrary incrementals.
Not much can be said here, early game is fun and interesting. You are always leveling up, and receiving weapons and items, that can increase your power level.
Okay, remember how I said early game is fun and interesting? Will once you reach end game, you soon realize just how grindy the game is. End game is all about repeating the same maps over and over again, grinding for stupid rare reds, and hoping to get a hat; and or fancy skin. In short the end game does not have any substantial content, for players. Many a player have already spoken at length, regarding this issue; so I will only be repeating the same thing. To summarize, it’s not fun and is grindy.
Ether deeds need to become their own mode, or players need to get them at a faster rate. Otherwise end game is just not fun, and is tedious.
This game quickly becomes easy, once you master its mechanics. Personally, this is a problem that needs to be remedied. The highest difficulty, legend, is made trivial through proper teamwork. Hence,“teamwork” you can succeed in this difficulty, with proper teamwork. As long as everyone knows what to do, and understands their role, then all is okay. Honestly, this is an issue, legend should be far more difficult.
Legend should require far more, than just “teamwork”. If I can complete legend both solo, and with a random dysfunctional group, then there is a problem here. The highest difficulty, should require coordination, communication, and a refined understanding of the mechanics. In other words this mode should be unforgiving, hence unforgiving; fair but ultimately unforgiving.
Honestly, the level design is pretty solid. All maps have a coherent direction, and a simple to understand layout. Of course, certain maps will benefit from a couple of quality of life changes, but at present; it’s fine.
In conclusion, I hope the devs at least read some of my feedback and consider some of it. Of course I am not so egotistical to think that they would read the entire thing and agree with all my points, lol. I just hope that some of it is at least considered. Finally since this is on a community board, I would like to know what some of you think. Do you agree? Disagree? Are there certain points that you wish to elaborate on?