Scoreboard Blues - Suggestions for improving player expectations

EDIT: See especially EmpIzza’s great post outlining proposed new fields.

In the beginning, there was the Left4Dead scoreboard, which was pretty much fine because the characters had no mechanical differences, so competing for best performance was totally reasonable.

Then, there came the rats, and the art of the scoreboard evolved:

We got to see some highlights, but you rarely had a chance to pore over every single data point. For the most part, it was still reasonable for players to care about their scoreboard performance, because there weren’t that many differences between different weapons: attack speed, stamina, armor-piercing ability, and ammunition. Getting top in every single category mostly corresponded to excellence, except on a couple of maps like Wheat and Chaff (where a ‘collect the objects’ game occupied the whole level.)

Now the rats are back, and Nurgle has gifted them with their most insidious plan to date to undermine the Heroes of Ubersreik: making them insecure about their performance.

Do you want to specialize in blocking and parrying? Too bad; there’s no field for that. Do you want to specialize in killing elites or specials? Your numbers will never be as high as everyone else’s. What this scoreboard prioritizes is how many hordes you can kill. That is, the useless, nearly-harmless rats and northmen who rarely cause problems for the team, require no coordination or skill to defeat, and can be woodchippered with a little knowledge of blocking, a good chokepoint, and a sharp blade.

This is absurd. Fatshark has spent years developing an involved game that has a diverse cast of professions with different specialities—and few of them are above-average at clearing out trash. This scoreboard sends completely the wrong message: that players need to get the most green circles in order to be the best. That kind of competition is why we’re now seeing threads where people are essentially arguing for the removal of the entire gear system, and to homogenize the game so much that it’s basically just a fantasy version of Left4Dead.

Developers: stick to your original vision. Get rid of this scoreboard so you’re not sending mixed messages to your players. Good teamplay must be the priority.

Suggestions for new fields:

  • How much did you heal other players?
  • How much damage did you block?
  • How effective were you at using your profession’s active ability? (e.g. what is the ratio of Trueflight Volleys to specials killed with Trueflight Volleys? How many enemies did the Ironbreaker taunt on average? Not applicable to every profession ability)
  • How many times did you attack an enemy and deal zero damage because you used a non-armor piercing weapon and failed to headshot?
7 Likes

so much this…

or even just get rid of the scoreboard… it’s half the reason we are where we are now… because people try to use it to measure how powerful they perceive something to be, even if that’s entirely false… it’s really ruined a lot of the potential the game had…

4 Likes

I agree the scoreboard is really harmful to the game in general. Honestly I can’t think of what to type here because I agree with everything in the original post and Keykoh’s statement. A scoreboard is not needed in a game about teamwork

I also don’t see any reason for the scoreboard to exist. I also don’t get why the highest damage taken is highlighted,shouldn’t it be the other way around? It would make any kind of sense if there was also a times downed/killed tab,but there isn’t.

They should just remove the scoreboard and give each player a personal stats tab with more detailed statistics,so he could(if he wished) record them and improve upon the ones he wants.

2 Likes

I’m a big fan of the scoreboard. The problem isn’t too much data, it’s too little. I’d love to see a damage blocked, a damage absorbed, healing draughts used, and pretty much anything including the kitchen sink.

Playing as a bounty hunter (post-nerf) my goal isn’t top damage. It’s to kill specials, and to kill bosses. Everything else is gravy. If I’m playing Sienna, my goal is top damage, because I should be spreading fire dots onto anything and everything - but I don’t expect a high kill count. If I’m playing Bardin, my goal is both lowest damage taken, and for everyone else to deal more damage than I do. I need to see the scoreboard, because it’s the only reliable way to self-improve. Subjective “oh I’m doing well today” can be flat out proven wrong by the scoreboard. The Dunning-Kruger Effect disappears when you see your “grade” … and others see theirs.

And there’s the flip side. I play with friends and pugs, and honestly, the scoreboard is the only way to be able to help improve some of their gameplay, and for them to be able to critique mine. There are obvious issues - you can tell when someone isn’t grouped up during gameplay. But when you’re avoiding your own blows, it’s hard to see if your teammates are holding up their weight or carrying you to the finish line.

Don’t remove the scoreboard because you don’t like it. Some of us need it.

3 Likes

it’s not that i don’t like it as a thing, i don’t like that people use it as a pissing contest and some kind of benchmark for balance ignoring everything that happened in the game and how people contributed. some people will run ahead yolo swaggins into a horde, die, maybe even cause a wipe, then act like they gotta big ahem just because they got a couple more kills than a team played and talk trash. what I don’t like about it is it seems to be causing bad team play and habits, and poor attitude towards what should be someone’s team. they’re viewing their team as opponents in a death match and they think they have to get most kills, everyone else is a “noob” and such. just… no… if that’s what the scoreboard is going to breed then it needs to go.

2 Likes

I’m not advocating for getting rid of feedback mechanisms! They just need to be relevant to teamplay. In particular, overall kills aren’t a good measure of this, especially since it’s almost always going to be correlated with melee kills, ranged kills, or both. They encourage a “collect all the green circles to be the best” mentality—and enhance the Dunning–Kruger effect by encouraging reckless or adversarial playstyles. I can’t think of anything more misleading.

Consider this, though: if there wasn’t a scoreboard, all you’d have to go on to judge your performance would be peer evaluation and whether or not you got through the level (ideally with 3 tomes and 2 grimoires). Isn’t that what really matters? Whether or not your team actually works in practice, rather than trying to quantify every aspect of it?

So with that in mind, maybe what we really need is a comparison between your numbers and some ideal target numbers, numbers that are believed to be a guarantee that you get through the map. For example, if you’re playing Ironbreaker, then you should probably be getting at least a certain proportion of all damage blocked out of what everyone in the party got. Such a fraction could be derived from analytics about how well the average (or best) players handle the map and difficulty you’re on. This way, you get scoreboard feedback, but you’re not competing with your teammates. And that’s what we want to prevent.

Another thought: Overwatch discourages players from picking too many supports, snipers, tanks, et cetera. What if Vermintide 2 did the same, and moreover, tried to connect quickplay players into parties that lacked the role of their current profession? Right now all it does is ensure your hero is free (and that can be turned off), but it doesn’t stop a game with a bunch of snipers from getting an additional one. Having the UI convey this would go a long way to communicating correct team composition, and hence good playstyle.

to win these stats you
-spam all medkits you find on anyone doesn’t matter how inneficiently if you use them all you will win!
-stand there blocking! blocking is a failure state its what you do when you have got caught and trapped. in a perfect run this stat would be 0 even for a so called tank
-use your special once on something weak and then stop bingo you 100% it! dont want to take that risky shot that might miss but save a player or get taken by someone else before mine gets there.
-ill just take the hatchet then , might suck but it is all armour pen so ill win that stat!

There is one simple problem with any scoreboard.

This is a coop game and scores are competitive, the only stats that should matter is , win/lose and did we all make it with the loot?

1 Like

I don’t think anyone could be cynical enough to spam medkits. That would just screw up the game and get you kicked. You’re right that some of the other stats need to be used in conjunction with something else. Perhaps “number of rats that were prevented from doing any damage to the party” would be a good one.

Players do still need feedback if they lose. It’s useful to know why you lost. Was it because you wandered off from the group? Everyone rushed into a bottleneck and they got stomped by a boss? No one was picking off specials? To a veteran of VT1 or L4D these seem like obvious things, but I can see newbies benefiting from more feedback, especially if they only play with random strangers.

i can see that point but it also seems a bit flawed to me , for scores to be meaningful and useful in the regard of showing your performance and helping you improve wouldn’t you have to only play the same map against the same spawns with the same allies doing the exact same things at the same time in each iteration?
your bounty hunter might suddenly get no special kills after getting all of them but have got no worse just happened to group with a god like kruber who was faster than you.
your siennas damage might be useful might be a waste of time , if those flame dots dont reduce the hits to kill , which depends on the weapons and performance of your team not on your skill at spamming it on everything.
the difficulty of your bardin’s job is going to vary hugely on how much gear and levels and skill of your allies vs the difficulty level and the random spawn.

so i don’t see how any comparison from game to game can provide any sort of accurate analysis of individual performance. just too much of it is out of your control.

Today we have the following “stats” at the scoreboard. Some useful, some not so useful.

Stat Comment
Total kill Not really useful, should IMHO be replaced with trash kills
Specials killed Together with elites a useful stat for snipers.
Elites killed
Ranged kills Doesn’t say anything
Melee kills Doesn’t say anything
Damage dealt Combined with kills?
Damage to bosses See above
Damage taken Combined with damage blocked
Headshots Maybe better suited as a % of specials killed? Headshotting trash is a useless statistic
Saves Could be combined with revives I think
Most revives See above

But mostly, the in game scoreboard is messy and isn’t really presenting useful information in its entireity. I would suggest dividing the scoreboard into three categories;

  • Offensive, a quantification of your offensive capabilities
  • Defensive, a quantification of your defensive capabilties
  • Team, a quantification of your teamplaying capabilities

In the following table I try to make sense of my thoughts:

Type Stat Comment
Offensive Trash For all intents and purposes there are four types of mobs: trash, armored trash (elites), specials and bosses
Armored trash Statistics could be on the form Killed / Damage / MassPushed / BlockedPercent
Specials Where MassPushed is the total mass pushed of that kind, and BlockedPercent the percentage of your hits against that mob type that was useless, i.e. either blocked or ineffective (such as hitting armor with a light swing)
Bosses See above.
Defensive Trash It would be interesting to know what damaged you during a game, i.e. which enemy type am I taking damage from.
Armored trash Could be on the form Downed (or killed) / DamageTaken / DamageBlocked
Specials See above.
Bosses See above.
Team Damage mitigation Healing and damage mitigation provided for team, on the form DmgMit / Healing
Ammo Ammo provided for team and self (in % of full loadout)
Revive Saves and revives, Nr of Saves / Nr of Revives
Damage Self inflicted or team inflicted dmg, such as falling, throwing nades at friends etc. SelfDmg / TeamDmg

I think this would be much more useful information, because suddenly “hidden” mechanics become visible, such as pushing via the “mass pushed” stat. All classes are not about dealing direct damage or avoiding damage, and therefore I think a more nuanced scoreboard might be useful.

Below, an example (hand made, any inconsistencies are my own, see above table for explanation of numbers):

Dorf Sienna Stat Kerry Salty
Offense
102 / 320 / 1793 / 8 % 563 / 5673 / 164 / 0 % Trash 263 / 1723 / 845 / 13 % 102 / 565 / 63 / 13 %
2 / 113 / 1065 / 40 % 23 / 542 / 0 / 0 % Armored trash 5 / 120 / 0 / 65 % 3 / 152 / 0 / 15 %
2 / 143 / 541 / 0 % 1 / 82 / 0 / 0 % Specials 17 / 527 / 15 / 2 % 5 / 179 / 15 / 2 %
0 / 234 / 0 / 0 % 1 / 554 / 0 / 0 % Bosses 1 / 760 / 0 / 15 % 2 / 1365 / 0 / 11 %
Defense
0 / 0 / 5123 0 / 163 / 145 Trash 0 / 245 / 1432 0 / 67 / 1235
0 / 0 / 1874 0 / 0 / 0 Armored trash 0 / 0 / 230 0 / 523 / 167
0 / 0 / 165 0 / 137 / 0 Specials 0 / 0 / 0 0 / 232 / 0
0 / 160 / 1340 2 / 432 / 0 Bosses 1 / 220 / 436 0 / 22 / 96
Team
0 / 345 0 / 0 Damage mitigation 0 / 623 0 / 0
0 % 0 % Ammo 136 % 0 %
3 / 1 0 / 0 Saves and revives 3 / 0 1 / 2
0 / 0 273 / 253 Damage 0 / 123 42 / 0

As you can (hopefully) see in the table, some otherwise hidden metrics become visible. Such as Bardin pushing a crap tonne of hordes, and the player could use that information to improve and measure between games. Sienna could for example realize that she on average during a round takes as much damage during a round from venting as she does from trash and specials, so a clear way to improve (i.e. vent better). Kerry obviously deals good damage against bosses and specials, but struggles enourmously with armored trash (65% of hits blocked!), another clear way to improve. And Salty can see that he is good at dealing boss damage, but otherwise is his offensive kinda meh and he has issues with taking damage from armored trash.

This post ended up a bit longer than intended, so high five to those of you that read it.

And finally, the TLDR; make sure all numbers are useful in some sense and that they aren’t creating weird incentives for stat hunters / padders (I’m just waiting for the first mods to come out which measure stuff and give an ELO-equivalent per player), ergo make sure that stats presented aren’t some weird proxy because there should be a scoreboard, but rather a good representation of actual game impact where skill can be considered an over time average of game impact disregarding outliers.

6 Likes

Amazing work, EmpIzza. Now we just need to figure out how to get the devs to notice it!

I want absolutely everything in this table. Make it happen!

…or wait for the QoL mod to make it happen!

Maybe also add in number of times the player went down, and number of deaths a player had in the run.

Number of total kills and total damage dealt just encourages people to play like they are born special, rushing out on their own before someone else “steals” their kills.

Personally I don’t think any of those are useful, the blocked damage one could be okay. But someone just holding block is neither skillful nor helpful. I got 56% block reduction on my dwarf and I can hold block all day. However that does not equal to success. I’d rather have “how many pushed enemies” and “how much team damage did you do”. Pushing enemies is crowd control, something that is very much overlooked by a great majority of players. The team damage is so people can see that they actually do friendly fire and how much they do. I hit one guy with an arrow in legendary run for the whole run and still got complaints over that I team damage, ONE arrow. All while he feels free to run through me from behind into my line of sight or strafe like a mad man while I always keep to the right side of rooms, corridors etc.

yea… it’s one thing if you’re shooting them in the back of the head, but people do that to me as well… obviously have ranged out and shooting and they literally walk through me… sigh

1 Like

Yep, then you hear voice chat open up “heeey maaaaaan, whyyyyyyyyyy? whyyyyyyyy u doooooooo daaaaaaaaaat?”. Ugh.

i felt bad earlier cus a special dropped down in front of me and i shotguned at it with my repeater… apparently a second after kruber killed it from the other side… and guess who got a face full of buckshot? felt bad for that >< thankfully kruber is tough as nails. was my only incident, meanwhile i got shot in the back by one of the other players… a lot… yay for regen.

1 Like

Just make individual statistics for each player.

Easiest solution really, remove the party comparison and instead show team stats (times downed, times died, heals, revives,…) and give players individual stats for feedback. This game does not need a comparison of damage numbers or kills or any stat for that matter. Its a team game and this does not have any positive effect on game play, at worst it’ll encourage players to do dumb selfish things just to get more kills.

1 Like
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