Suggestion: Improved visual indication for ranged weapon crits

One thing that has annoyed me a bit since launch is the lack of visual feedback for critical hits. Melee weapons glow a bit and make a different sound when they crit. Ranged weapons that fire bolts or arrows leave a visible red tracer behind the projectile. But a lot of weapons like Sienna staffs and hitscan weapons like the handgun don’t visually differentiate crits and non crits.

My suggestion would be to add an optional second hit marker, an X shape, that flashes red when you hit something with a crit. This is in addition the existing hit marker that flashes white when you damage something, or flashes orange when you get a headshot. That would give the player a clear indication of any critical hits that damage an enemy, which can be important to know for talent/trait activations.

In addition to this I think the game’s weapon visuals could be improved to give the player (and the other three people in the game) more feedback in combat.

  • Bows/Crossbows

All of the bows and crossbows already indicate crit attacks using trails of red sparks behind crit arrows/bolts. This is adequate and no work is necessary here.

  • Repeater Handgun/Pistol, Blunderbuss, Grudge-Raker

These weapons leave “smoke” tracers behind when you fire and these tracers glow vaguely orange when you shoot a crit. The effect is easy to miss because it’s not all that visible unlike similar effects for arrows and bolts. So I think the tracers should be made a brighter red colour (like crit arrows).

As well as the tracers you could add a puff of red sparks to the muzzle flash whenever you fire a crit shot. This would be easily visible to the player using the weapon in any lighting condition, especially since the muzzle flashes tend to cover up your tracers (which are more useful for other players to see).

  • Handgun, BoP

Handguns and BoP currently do not have tracers, but I think you could add the same tracer/crit tracer/muzzle flash effects to them for the same reasons I mentioned above.

  • Drakegun, Flamestorm Staff

One common misconception is that flamethrowers don’t crit, they do in fact crit but the damage you deal does not increase unless you burn a chaos warrior, in which case only crits will hurt them. It doesn’t benefit the rest of the party much to know when the flame crits, but it’s still worth knowing for the user because of weapon traits. So I think what you could do is add red sparks to the muzzle of the drakegun or the head of sienna’s staff because this part of the weapon is always visible when you fire it.

  • Drake Pistol/Beam staff alt fire

Crits could be displayed in two ways for these weapons. Red sparks would fly out of the pistols (or sienna’s hand) when a crit attack is fired. Secondly these attacks don’t have a projectile but anything you hit bursts into flame. So if you fire a crit blast attack any targets you strike would also display a few red sparks on them in addition to the flame effect.

  • Beam staff primary

This is probably the worst weapon in regards to crit feedback. As with the other weapons you could display some red sparks on the “barrel end” of the beam staff whenever the beam does a crit damage tick. You could also make the beam itself pulse red momentarily the way gun tracers do.

  • Beam staff charged shot

I have some other ideas in regards to this weapon’s visuals but I’ll post that in a separate thread when I have a more finished concept to present.

  • Fireball Staff

The bolt attack for fireball and conflag already turns red when it crits, however only the tip of the projectile turns red and it’s not easy to see. You could add the same trail of sparks generated by crit arrows to make crit attacks more visible.

Currently crit charged fireballs don’t look any different, but the same things can be applied. Crit fireballs turn red and leave trails of red sparks.

  • Conflag Staff

Conflag has the same primary bolt attack that the fireball staff does, so those changes would be identical.The conflag charged attack is a bit more difficult to modify. Just making the explosion red wouldn’t be very visible because the conflag attack already has a giant red runic circle on the ground whenever it is used.

I think what you could do is add a red “spike” that juts up from the middle of the conflag circle, sort of like a lens flare. As an added bonus this would also help you see where the epicenter of the blast is located when attacking a single large target like a CW or boss as only the very centre of the circle does the full damage.


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