I can’t speak for everyone but I listen very carefully to all argumentation and assess the logic of the assertions carefully. Just because people are presenting valid counterpoints doesn’t somehow give the argument being challenged some bizarre ideological martyr status. The suggestions presented are bad because the logic and facts simply don’t support them. Here’s a relatively mechanical rundown of the whole discussion:
1. It’s suggested that “ranged” classes should be nerfed, specifically that they shouldn’t be able to have so much ammo, because they outperform “melee” classes and are intrinsically better than them.
a) As repeatedly pointed out, skilled players on frontline characters keep up just fine with skilled players on ranged characters. Average players do average regardless of class. Good players do good regardless of class. Some players are better with “ranged” characters than they are with “melee” characters and vice versa.
b) Every “melee” character, save Slayer, has a ranged weapon. In some cases (eg. IB, Shade), the “melee” character has extremely strong ranged potential that rivals their “ranged” counterparts. Not only do they have access to the exact same sustainability traits, the fact that their “ranged” counterparts are self-sustaining means that the “melee” character can generally take the ammo pickups, meaning they’re on pretty close footing as far as ranged potential goes and they have much greater melee potential and melee survivability. Logically, then, there is no reason for them to fail to perform.
c) The scorecard does not properly reflect the most critical melee contributions. It does not show how a “melee” character held a line or deleted a CW or kept a patrol from overrunning the entire group. It is not appropriate to reflect solely upon the scorecard when assessing the value of a character.
2. From there, the next point of debate becomes, “but ‘ranged’ characters can do it easier. It’s harder for ‘melee’ characters to do so well.”
a) As per 1a, if lots of people are doing it just fine then it’s a simple matter of skill. A case was made to make melee easier to play, however, which we’ll touch on in 3.
b) As per 1b, “melee” characters have all the same exact tools in their kit and despite not being self-sustaining when it comes to ammo, the very presence of a “ranged” class in the comp means that every “melee” character has waaaaay more ammo to play with, so there’s really no excuse to lose out vs ambients or vs hordes. “Melee” classes have a lot of horde delete ranged options and excellent melee potential.
c) As per 1c, even after fully recognizing 2a/1a, you have to remember that a lot of what “melee” classes do simply isn’t reflected on the scorecard, and “melee” classes can do a lot of things “ranged” classes can’t, like handling a much wider area of enemy engagement, surviving more challenging situations, dealing with mixed (especially heavy) threats, and holding lines or facetanking the things ranged characters simply can’t.
3. As mentioned in 2a, it was suggested that melee be buffed to make it easier to play, eg. by improving cleave to be balanced against the fact that VT2 hordes are substantially larger than VT1’s. The counterpoint to this has been, “but then ‘ranged’ characters get stronger too.”
a) This assertion is a huge problem because the statement defies all logical thinking and directly contradicts the original complaint and suggestion’s premise in its entirety. If the argument is that “ranged is better than melee,” or “ranged doesn’t need to melee,” the suggestion that “ranged” characters having a melee buff helps them more than it helps “melee” characters is entirely paradoxical and the whole thing falls flat on its face. Further, if we consider 2 to be the counterpoint to 1a-c, 3 is impossible. It renders all earlier arguments logically inert. 3 would mean the problem has nothing to do with “ranged” classes.
b) As per 1a/2a, if skilled players already have comparable output regardless of class, making melee easier to use would only mean that less skilled players would be able to do the same. This directly solves the “problem” presented in 2. If you someone denies that, their goal isn’t to improve" balance" or “equality,” it’s to make “melee” intrinsically better than “ranged.” Which leads us to,
c) If, as per 2a, skilled players have no issues matching output regardless of class, improving melee would mean that “melee” is outright better than “ranged.”
4. From here, the argument for nerf starts to get pretty muddy but the next clearest logical statement is that it would be better if “ranged” classes simply didn’t have as much ammo sustainability.
a) 1a/2a, again. I know lots of great “melee” players who have no problem keeping pace with other great “ranged” players. I see lots of average “melee” players who have identical output to other average “ranged” players.
b) This suggestion obliterates the ammo balance portion of 1b entirely. Right now, when a ranged player is present, everyone’s ranged potential improves because “melee” players get more ammo pickups. If “ranged” players need ammo under this plan, one of two things is going to happen: either the “ranged” player is going to take the ammo and the “melee” player isn’t ever going to have any or the “melee” player is going to take the ammo and the “ranged” player can’t do their job. This screws up every aspect of the entire game.
c) As per 4b, the “melee” players, being closer to the frontline, are pretty much always gonna get the ammo unless there’s way more communication and, again as per 4b, if the team divides ammo the “correct” way, the melee player just gets screwed and is at even more of a disadvantage.
5. The next point is typically along the lines of, “people should be forced to melee for their ammo.:”
a) See 4b / 4c. This is all well and good except it means the “ranged” character is now a “melee” character who will still need all the ammo pickups because if there’s nothing to kill, they aren’t getting ammo. This creates a dramatic imbalance in the favour of "melee classes.
b) A ranged character who is doing their job isn’t sitting right on the frontline. They would have to step their squishy, 3-hit KO self into the trenches then back off to fire, then repeat. This, again, creates a major imbalance in favour of “melee” classes.
c) See 2b. This kind of trait would extensively benefit “melee” classes, effectively turning them into better “ranged” classes than the actual “ranged” classes by guaranteeing they’d have non-stop ammo sustainability combined with their ranged weapons’ often wide arcs of fire and extreme lethality. This is most likely why Scavenger isn’t a thing in VT2: Every character has a unique identity and is balanced uniquely (and pretty evenly right now for the most part).
6. Argument gets muddier still and devolves into citing adverts with the term “melee action.”
a) Melee action =/= only melee action
b) While I think one’s grounds for complaint in this regard are dubious, take it up with the marketing department
c) The trailer is evenly divided between “melee” and “ranged” combat. It is very clear that “ranged” weapons are a huge part of the game, as they were in VT1.
d) Ranged was far more prevalent in VT1 by virtue of even stronger drake weaponry, tf bow, better hb bow, better sb, better rh, basically better ranged weapons altogether and waaaaay more ammo all around. All this combined with Haste + HoD + Regrowth/Bloodlust (or Haste + Skullcracker or any haste + combo, depending on what you wanna do) means that VT1’s ranged combat is vastly more prevalent and abusable. With the exception of the fact that cleave has not been appropriately scaled in VT2, melee combat is a much more integral part of the game and it is on par with ranged combat (see 1a, 2a).
Bonus Point: The suggestion that there is a “ranged meta.”
a) See 1a, 2a-c: Good players keep up fine. How “hard” something is to do subjective. The suggestions for making “melee” easier led to 3, at which point the argument falls apart.
b) “Meta” is defined by the players, not the game, not the devs. From 1A, “melee” jobs have as much potential to perform as “ranged” jobs. As such, balance has been achieved in general, despite some characters needing buffs.
c) As per 1c, 14/15 characters have ranged weapons. The presence of a “ranged” class enhances the ranged capabilities of all “melee” classes present. This means that for all intents and purposes, “ranged” classes have little intrinsic advantage when it comes to ranged combat and an intrinsic disadvantage when it comes to melee combat.
Bonus Point: Using scorecards as proof that something is OP/UP.
a) This is a bs, illogical, weaksauce tactic and everyone knows it.
b) 1a/2a again.
Repercussions if FS listens to this kind of idea:
a) Game balance (see 1a/2a) is thrown out the window in a game that’s already struggling to make basic, fundamental fixes.
b) Half of the playerbase will be alienated. World not be surprised to see a large exodus.
c) Pace of the game would be altered in its entirety and every aspect of combat and director behaviour would need to be rewritten to compensate for the fact that half the classes simply aren’t doing the same job they used to do (ie. The job they are designed to do from which all director behavior is based)."
For all these reasons, the suggestions made in this thread are simply not very well thought through and often completely illogical. There is a mountain of logic as to why the game is actually very well balanced from a “ranged” and “melee” standpoint as is. There is very little logic to argue that, vis-a-vis 1a/2a, there’s a disparity in output potential. Lastly, not to straw man or be rude, but there’s evidence to suggest some of the most vocal proponents of this sort of change have no idea what they’re talking about.
The correct solution to the problem being presented, which due to 1a/2a is clearly a matter of “ease of use,” is to somehow make “melee” classes more forgiving w/o further enhancing their overall potential. I would suggest basically doubling the cleave of all weapons to compensate for the fact that hordes in VT2 are over twice as large as hordes in VT1 while the weapons are the same or worse. The damage tables on this cleave should not be programmed to greatly affect lethality on additional targets, only stagger and knockback (ie. the additional targets should be affected by the strike but take zero damage unless under the affect of STR potions). Further, shields must be given back their innate enhanced knockback from VT1 on push and they should have much greater tank potential than they currently possess. All this, combined with much needed fixes to ghost hits, running hits, skateboarding CW, etc, will correct the issue.