The red item question - thoughts from a vt1 grindman

Vermintide 2 needs to enable players to slowly, but steadily and without the uncertainty of rng-based loot drops, farm and obtain the red items they want.

On this issue Vermintide 2 has not improved at all compared to the original Vermintide game, and I firmly believe that it will need to in order to maintain a happy, sizeable long term playerbase.

As someone who early on got obsessed with the idea of obtaining reds in the original Vermintide, I have spent over a thousand hours almost exclusively grinding the same maps over and over again in public lobbies, and with a little luck along with the willpower of an angry no-lifer, I finally obtained every single red item in the game, with only two of my reds having been dropped from difficulty mods as well, almost as natty as it gets.

Everyone already knows that the original game’s playerbase quickly dropped drastically due to the extremely harsh loot system, but how did this grinding journey affect me, one of the few out of thousands who actually bothered to go through with it and commit to this atrocity of a game design? I became bitter, resentful, toxic, an all around not-nice-guy to play with, and I began to hate the game I would dedicate hours upon hours of my free time to, a game I once loved.

Fatshark, you have created all of these amazingly blue-glowing items for the playerbase to explore and enjoy, why not let them? As the game stands currently, only an extremely low percentage of the playerbase will ever get to experience one of the most obvious end game goals that you have set for them, because you once again have locked it behind a practically impassable RNG-wall.

The argument for the original vermintide loot system, which will probably still be used for the new, is that it is a reason to keep playing, and that is most certainly true. It is, however, a reason that comes at a great cost, as I have given example of above through my own story with the original Vermintide, and I firmly believe that it is possible to find a solution that circumvents all the frustrations and negative consequences of an RNG-based drop system for reds, while still extending the games lifespan even more than the current loot system ever will.

Do I have a completely balanced and failsafe solution prepared and at hand? No, but i do have a suggestion, an idea of what maybe could be done.

Naturally, people want to get the red versions of the items they already favor and spend most of their time playing with. Currently there is no way to ensure that a player will be rewarded for their efforts in the game with the red that they would appreciate the most at the time. Surely a way to ensure this would lead to a happier playerbase, who would feel more motivated to keep up the grind.

My suggestion is that reds shouldn’t exclusively drop from chests, but rather also be obtainable through playing with or otherwise interacting with relation to the item, whose red variant you want to obtain. Say for example I would like a red two-handed hammer, there would be a “quest”, or however you would name it, in which it would be stated that i needed to e.g. bash in X amount of marauder skulls, or pull off X amount of big swings htting X amount of enemies at once. these tasks would ideally integrate organically into how the player normally uses the weapon, could be multiple per item, and require several hours each to complete. These tasks could also work with trinkets, needing more general requirements for fulfillment and probably more time to complete, but it could easily be done.

There should also be a way to progress at an increasing rate scaling with difficulty, so that farming on recruit wouldn’t be a thing, but an additional benefit of this system would be that players who for one reason or another aren’t able to play on highest difficulty still potentially would be able to progress towards the reds they want.

Through this system for obtaining reds, players would constantly feel that they were progressing towards a goal, it could disincentivize grinding easier difficulties and maps, and it would increase the reward for playing, ultimately keeping people invested in the game for a longer period of time, and allowing them to explore the game freely without the need to always feel grind-efficient.

I don’t expect Fatshark to do as I say, but I do hope that they at least take into consideration what I’ve said here, as I feel like they currently are unaware of the implications that their current loot system has.

Thank you for reading.

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Im still wondering on what red items actually give you this time?
In 1st game higher quality weapons had higher damage but now its tied to power.

Do they get 4th trait or smth?

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They are identical to oranges in power, except that they always have max percentage rolls on properties. Reds weren’t more powerful than oranges in vt1 either, except that they sometimes had unique trait combos and always had max percentages.

Reds also have unique blue-glowing runes on them in vt2.

I completely agree with you on this one. After finally collecting all the reds in vt1, I could enjoy the game so much more. Instead of getting angry if someone less accomplished joined and ruined my fullbook cata run, I could just enjoy the game for what it is and have fun playing whatever I felt like doing at the moment. It also increased map variety (no need to always play HoM or other fast/easy/high chest maps) and made it easier to try out higher diffuculties (i.e. onslaught/dw) because I didn’t mind failing anymore. Instead I could focus on improving my overall gameplay and helping others get better.

However, I understand that farming for red items is a huge incentive for a lot of people and the way you suggested to implement it actually seems really good. Not necessarily needing to complete a map might also prevent some toxocity.

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I always asking myself if actually the designer of the lootsystem ever calculated with a rough approximation of how long it takes to do a map with full books(with and without loot dices) and his chosen probability for reds in the chests the expected time on average it takes to collect say some specific amount of reds or something.

Further its actually not only about reds. Cosmetic items also seem to be kind of scarce.
In v1 you could calculate it actually directly setting using the average time to do HoM and then the dice system, but here i have no clue how to start.
Doing statistical inference will not work because the i need the amount of opened chests and here comes the problem compare it to the amount of reds which is for most of us 0 at the moment. Thus too small.

I do not have all reds in v1 but 90% of them and i majorly did this in 2017. It wasnt always funny and i think i got the first red about lvl 100. The daily system helped a lot to get consistently reds over time.
Thats also one part I am missing in v2. Why the hell did they cancel this?
Ok one might think its so easy now to obtain an orange item maybe therefore it does not make any sense to implement it, but i dont know. In v1 a often had a lot of different orange weapons(of the same type) with different traits, but with the properties and traits we have now there is no incentive to do that. I mostly salvage everything.(But maybe you are doing not, I dont really know what to do with % less area damage or 6% more power vs X)

Finally, I have to admit it has not been even a week since launch so RNG maybe just kicks our asses.
I personally like some way of achieving them like you said, so that i consistently can get some progress.
(I mostly run pubs on champion, legend seems to be not feasible for me in pubs at the moment)

The easy fix would be to tie specific red items to deeds, and make deeds drop a little more often (even from other deeds). At least in V1 you could do enough bounties to get a guaranteed red item from the bounty board.

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That’s actually a great idea. Since deeds are hard as F, yet you get a merchants chest or some BS like that. Unless the deed bugs all together and you get nothing. Would be perfect grounds to implement reds. Not only will you get a reason to do deeds, the challenge of completing it and the boasting to show off your reds saying “I did the deed boi”. I liek! -Borat

This sounds really good.

And a kick towards the deed system, cmon, why not change it so deeds always gives chests with 300 iPower and possibility of dropping reds? Doing deeds is completely a waste of time right now below Champion if you are hunting for reds.

As someone mentioned above, reds just give you max stats. Which you can obtain by re-rolling alot. That difference isn’t going to change gameplay.

If you are just chasing the carrot, just go for it. It’s not as rare as VT1. Someone in my group today got one from a champion chest. So I’m sure you’ll find a bunch within 1000 hrs.

Reds should be rare, they come with max stats and can be re-rolled as far as I’m aware. Once you get a red you’re ‘done’ forever with farming that particular item type and it’s not like green/blue dust is hard to come by. More than that, there isn’t any content currently gated behind having enough reds. They’re obviously helpful to have in Legend but far from necessary, for all intents and purposes they’re about prestige as much as performance.

They have unique illusions applied to them, they are always 300 power, and all of the properties on them roll at their maximum value 100% of the time.

AFAIK some trait combinations only drop and cant be rerolled, for example +crit +attack speed (the two together that is).

Yeah this is the problem with all loot being random. I think the biggest issue is that there needs to be an “endgame” loot that is not random. After putting in close to 70 hours I have one Red item. I have never seen a game with total, top to bottom RNG loot last. Every developer seems to really struggle with that lesson. It didn’t work for Diablo 3. Blizzard nearly killed its own IP because of it. When you need that “one” item but have to roll against thousands of other combinations, nothing is fun about that. Nothing is great about that. Some loot needs to be guaranteed. It may need a high bar, a challenge, an achievement, a certain number of hours in the game. So that people feel rewarded for just being “lucky.”

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