AA5 Discussion Thread (Renamed)

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  • jgvn11jgvn11 Posts: 65Player
    Avguste wrote: »
    I am not saying to remake AA2, however I would love for the AA to be more realistic, slow paced. Something ala AA2, or something like SQUAD

    And for those that think slow pace, realistic type shooter is not going to work, just look at the current stats for SQUAD and Proving Grounds https://steamcharts.com/cmp/393380,203290

    SQUAD's numbers would be a failure for a new AA game, IMO. I'm sorry, but there's no point in the Army putting out a video game unless it can make waves in the gaming community. At least something like Arma's numbers would be respectable. You can even see how SQUAD usually has huge jumps in player counts, probably due to a sale or something and then it drops right back down. What's driving that lack of player retention?

    Either way, slow paced realism games are extremely niche games in today's market. You'd pretty much be fighting within the Arma, Squad, Insurgency player base. That's small compared to the larger market. People want games that feel responsive and snappy, where you feel like you're in full control of your character and where skill and tactics determine the winner. The market has changed a lot since 2002, you either adapt or don't bother trying.

    AA5 can certainly take a lot of aspects from AA2, but I would be worried about slowing it down too much. It doesn't have to be extremely fast, but I'd think that something that feels more like PUBG (which is actually quite slow in comparison to many of the other popular games in the market) in terms of movement and pace would work. AAPG feels like you're walking through quicksand. Anyone who jumps into a game really needs to take time to adjust to how slow it feels. Many players wouldn't stick around to get there.

    Another thing that gives COD and AAA titles a lot of popularity is advertising. AA is a pretty good game, but I don't think many have ever heard of it. I remember about a year ago I told an Army Recruiter about this game, and he said he had never heard of it.

    Recruiters used to give away the game disks for AA2.
  • AvgusteAvguste Posts: 120Player
    Avguste wrote: »
    I am not saying to remake AA2, however I would love for the AA to be more realistic, slow paced. Something ala AA2, or something like SQUAD

    And for those that think slow pace, realistic type shooter is not going to work, just look at the current stats for SQUAD and Proving Grounds https://steamcharts.com/cmp/393380,203290

    SQUAD's numbers would be a failure for a new AA game, IMO. I'm sorry, but there's no point in the Army putting out a video game unless it can make waves in the gaming community. At least something like Arma's numbers would be respectable. You can even see how SQUAD usually has huge jumps in player counts, probably due to a sale or something and then it drops right back down. What's driving that lack of player retention?

    Either way, slow paced realism games are extremely niche games in today's market. You'd pretty much be fighting within the Arma, Squad, Insurgency player base. That's small compared to the larger market. People want games that feel responsive and snappy, where you feel like you're in full control of your character and where skill and tactics determine the winner. The market has changed a lot since 2002, you either adapt or don't bother trying.

    AA5 can certainly take a lot of aspects from AA2, but I would be worried about slowing it down too much. It doesn't have to be extremely fast, but I'd think that something that feels more like PUBG (which is actually quite slow in comparison to many of the other popular games in the market) in terms of movement and pace would work. AAPG feels like you're walking through quicksand. Anyone who jumps into a game really needs to take time to adjust to how slow it feels. Many players wouldn't stick around to get there.

    I dont know about you, but personally I would rather have the number of players SQUAD has on a regular basis than Proving Grounds.

  • 4DChessGenius4DChessGenius Posts: 2,124Player
    edited October 9
    Avguste wrote: »
    I dont know about you, but personally I would rather have the number of players SQUAD has on a regular basis than Proving Grounds.

    Of course, but that's setting the bar really low. The original America's Army probably had similar numbers to R6 Siege if I had to guess. Arma is a niche game and averages over 10K players (at times even close to 20k). Squad was never a game that had much hype. Only a few realism junkies when I would play AA talked about it. Never seen any big name streamers or gaming places talk about it. Again a niche game.

    Plus, if America's Army video games are pretty much commercials for the Army, then having only a few thousand people see that commercial is worthless. You want to get hundreds of thousands if not millions of eyes on that commercial interacting with Army stuff every day. That's the main value of America's Army games; whether it's recruiting young people, showing their parents what the Army's about, or just plain PR to show the Army in a positive light, people who play America's Army games will interact with the Army every single time they logon in an even more in depth way than any commercial can show them. That's why you can say that the game is a failure if it has an extremely small or even Squad level player base. It's not here so that a bunch of 40 year old men can stroll down memory lane and remember how awesome AA2 was back in 2004.
    You joined the world's greatest army to become a graphic artist? Outstanding!
  • Dct.F|LeventeDct.F|Levente Posts: 551Beta Tester
    Avguste wrote: »
    I dont know about you, but personally I would rather have the number of players SQUAD has on a regular basis than Proving Grounds.

    Of course, but that's setting the bar really low. The original America's Army probably had similar numbers to R6 Siege if I had to guess. Arma is a niche game and averages over 10K players (at times even close to 20k). Squad was never a game that had much hype. Only a few realism junkies when I would play AA talked about it. Never seen any big name streamers or gaming places talk about it. Again a niche game.

    I think the market has changed drastically since AA2. I was not around when AA2 was I thing (I was too young) but AFAIK good free games were quite uncommon back then. Now the market is flooded with good free-to-play games.

    I think it is very difficult to design a game today, which attracts a large (young) audience and portrays the army values as well. I can only imagine the face of Mr. 7-star Master 1st General of the Army, when he sees a colorful, fast paced, crazy game with dacing, which is supposed to show people how cool the army is... I don't think it is impossible, but it is no easy task.
    Theory and reality are not that different. In theory.
  • 4DChessGenius4DChessGenius Posts: 2,124Player
    edited October 10
    Avguste wrote: »
    I dont know about you, but personally I would rather have the number of players SQUAD has on a regular basis than Proving Grounds.

    Of course, but that's setting the bar really low. The original America's Army probably had similar numbers to R6 Siege if I had to guess. Arma is a niche game and averages over 10K players (at times even close to 20k). Squad was never a game that had much hype. Only a few realism junkies when I would play AA talked about it. Never seen any big name streamers or gaming places talk about it. Again a niche game.

    I think the market has changed drastically since AA2. I was not around when AA2 was I thing (I was too young) but AFAIK good free games were quite uncommon back then. Now the market is flooded with good free-to-play games.

    I think it is very difficult to design a game today, which attracts a large (young) audience and portrays the army values as well. I can only imagine the face of Mr. 7-star Master 1st General of the Army, when he sees a colorful, fast paced, crazy game with dacing, which is supposed to show people how cool the army is... I don't think it is impossible, but it is no easy task.

    That's why the only thing I think could really work is a highly competition-based game. Competitive play is what would align most closely to how the Army operates since you it requires the highest levels of teamwork. They'd just have to figure out a way to do it that doesn't make it seem like a CS or R6 rip-off. AA2 had a good competition community, but it was nowhere close to what we see today in major games. Honestly, I couldn't name a single F2P FPS game besides Fortnite that is hugely popular. Sure, I guess we could include CS & TF2, but they were originally paid games.

    Also, I wouldn't exactly say that the market was bad in those days. The late 90s and early 00s had one thing that we don't have today, and that's massive modding communities. Major developers have made modding tools at best be map editors. Long gone are the days when you had small dev teams putting out countless total conversion mods for Quake, Half-Life, Battlefield, etc. Half-Life 1 is a prime example of a game that lived a long life due to community mods. Team Fortress Classic was an offshoot of a Quake mod. Counter-Strike was a mod made by two guys which then was bought out by Valve. Day of Defeat was another mod that Valve bought. Firearms was for a short time, competing with CS to be the most popular multiplayer game for Half-Life. Desert Combat for Battlefield 1942 was hugely popular, which along with AA2 pushed FPS away from WWII games and into the modern era. Heck, even the Battle Royale fad was started due to a mod for Arma 2 (although this was more like 2013). The modding scene is pretty much dead now, so the options are actually more limited to AAA releases if you want anything that has a serious/sizable player base. In those times, it was much easier for small dev teams to put out a quality and unique MP game that could catch on and become insanely popular.

    You joined the world's greatest army to become a graphic artist? Outstanding!
  • AvgusteAvguste Posts: 120Player
    Competitive but also realistic with how the characters move, jump and such. No CSGO, CoD or Proving Grounds type of playing.

    And SQUAD is not exactly a niche game, it is very popular and has a good competitive scene. Also, as far as numbers, given how low Proving Grounds, I would bet the AA Devs would give their own salaries if they could somehow even get close to SQUAD type numbers. You are talking about portraying the Army, well portraying the army as a bunch of CoD is not the way to go either. Realism is much needed

  • 4DChessGenius4DChessGenius Posts: 2,124Player
    edited October 15
    Avguste wrote: »
    Competitive but also realistic with how the characters move, jump and such. No CSGO, CoD or Proving Grounds type of playing.

    And SQUAD is not exactly a niche game, it is very popular and has a good competitive scene. Also, as far as numbers, given how low Proving Grounds, I would bet the AA Devs would give their own salaries if they could somehow even get close to SQUAD type numbers. You are talking about portraying the Army, well portraying the army as a bunch of CoD is not the way to go either. Realism is much needed

    Here are some first person shooters that are currently averaging more players than Squad. Squad is currently game #105 on Steam. That's pretty niche if you ask me. Also, I know that Twitch numbers mean very little to some, but Squad only has 56 viewers at the moment while AAPG actually has 34.
    https://steamcharts.com/app/578080 - PUBG
    https://steamcharts.com/app/730 - CS GO
    https://steamcharts.com/app/440 - TF2
    https://steamcharts.com/app/359550 - R6 Siege
    https://steamcharts.com/app/107410 - Arma 3
    https://steamcharts.com/app/221100 - DayZ
    https://steamcharts.com/app/10 - CS 1.6
    https://steamcharts.com/app/444090 - Paladins
    https://steamcharts.com/app/755790 - Ring of Elysium
    https://steamcharts.com/app/240 - CS Source

    and here's Squad - https://steamcharts.com/app/393380

    I could also include Payday 2, but that's a coop game. Squad's numbers are similar to CS Source... a game long ago abandoned for CS GO. It's a niche game. Sorry. I guess you can say "at least it's doing better than Insurgency!" I'm sure AA devs would love having its numbers for AAPG today, however, no game dev creates a new game hoping for those kind of numbers.

    I do agree that AA5 should be more realistic, but it needs to be balanced with exciting gameplay. AA has never been a full blown simulator. What's funny is that when AAPG came out, people compared it to COD or CS, but this game is WAY slower than those games. Fast movement speed is not an issue when it comes to realism. IMO, movement needs to be very fast and smooth. Making time to kill more like AA2 which was a shot or two quicker than AAPG. Making the old school breathing patterns that forces you to time your shots at range, which also increased the sway with higher zoomed scopes. Making maps that foster a slower style of gameplay. Making actions have proper balance so that you don't have AAPG's super supported mode. Remember when AA2 forced you to deploy and fold up your bipod? Balance. I'll also say staying away from nonsense like self-bandaging the way this game portrays it. Stuff like that, yeah, let's make it more realistic. However, quicksand movement?

    NEVER EVER make the movement speeds slow like AAPG. People will be turned off from day one. You slow the game down by making it extremely dangerous to go solo. Sure, it's impossible to do completely... look at R6 Siege, extremely quick time to kill, but you'll still have people go solo. That's always going to happen, but the game moves quick and yet it's very tactical.
    You joined the world's greatest army to become a graphic artist? Outstanding!
  • AvgusteAvguste Posts: 120Player
    I would argue that the mouvements need to be slower than AAPG. There will always be people wanting to solo, but at least the slow mouvements will hopefully prevent the bunny hopping and CoD style. Realism to the max

  • Dct.F|LeventeDct.F|Levente Posts: 551Beta Tester
    Avguste wrote: »
    I would argue that the mouvements need to be slower than AAPG. There will always be people wanting to solo, but at least the slow mouvements will hopefully prevent the bunny hopping and CoD style. Realism to the max

    Movement speed is not related to jumping. In a post someone claimed, that the characters in AAPG run slower than real soldiers do. So slowing it down even further is not correct from a realism standpoint either. (Unless you want to emulate the effect of the unhealthy diet of future recruits...)
    What is CoD style in AAPG's movement? The ability to jump won't make it CoD style IMO...

    (Plus "bunny hopping" and "jumping around corners" is not the same thing in gaming terminology, but I guess saying this is kind of a lost cause here....)
    Theory and reality are not that different. In theory.
  • .!.dgodfather.!.dgodfather Posts: 446Player
    The definition of "slow movement/fast movement" has always cluttered these forums. The wording may not be right in many cases. We need people to clearly explain what is fast and what slow and what needs to be fast and what needs to be slow.

    Slow explained in me:
    I lean to favor the mil sim relative to damage taken without dying. If you're hit by a bulltet, you shouldn't move at 100% speed and 100% reaction. IMO - it should become more difficult to win if you take the first bullet.

    Fast explained by me:
    Nothing should feel clunky moving around at 100% health. I should be able to quickly strafe, crouch, prone, and jump (considering stamina relative to the environment e.g., weight of equipment, etc., one or two hops max over a given period of time). I should be able to interrupt reloads if necessary. If vaulting is automated, please allow a cancel or an override as to do as we intend.

    Other:
    Pleasantly surprise us.
    Fragweiser Website
    Make AA Great Again!
  • 4DChessGenius4DChessGenius Posts: 2,124Player
    edited October 16
    The old AA mechanic of moving slower while injured is a tough one. It makes sense in some respect, but at the same time, it's added punishment to an already great punishment (being injured). It'd really have to be tweaked. If the movement penalty is slight, rather than how it was in the original AA where you felt like you could hardly move around, then it may be OK. Same idea goes for sway & recoil penalties. Adding additional Punishment to players who are injured and a single shot away from death is not something that I see as being well received. Of course, it could tie into a medical system of some sort, which I'd certainly welcome if done right. These types of systems need to be balanced between giving players a smooth and responsive feeling, to where they feel like their character does exactly what they want it to do vs. the traditional simulator feeling. To note, these are highly trained Army soldiers that we are meant to portray. They shouldn't move around like snails. Either way, if you're going to include an injury system, do it right and make it balanced.

    Same idea with the insanely high aim punch + suppression penalties in the current game. You're getting shot at and maybe even being hit, by adding even more penalties, it makes the person being shot at almost have no ability to fight back. I know some people will say to run behind cover, but that's not always an option. If you can't kill your enemy before they react and shoot back, then that's your fault. The game shouldn't give you further assistance, especially if you lower time to kill a bit. Most games do have some sort of aim punch, but it all depends on the mechanics of the game as to how it works. In CS, if you have body armor, it's like 5% of the punch you receive without. That's meant as a mechanic to encourage people buy armor. An idea that AA could use that's similar is bringing back light/medium/heavy armor. Light gives you faster movement, less protection, higher aim punch penalty. Heavy armor gives you slower movement, more protection, little to no aim punch penalty. Medium is a balance.

    Anyway, bunny hopping is hardly a concern in most games these days. In CS it pretty much doesn't exist since there's no advantage to doing it. One or two hops as a cap are all you need. I personally can't stand when games completely take out jumping, JMO.

    Just think about game speed in this way. Back in AA2, if you took a sniper rifle there was a ton of sway. The sway was predictable, but it had a huge up and down swing. This is because using an 8x scope meant a lot more sway compared to a 4x or 1x. Very few players could hit shots while standing, but it was possible. Most players had to crouch or go prone with bipod to stand a chance at hitting sniper shots. Now compare this to games like CS, COD, R6, etc. where snipers can run around at full speed, stop for a second, and pop off a shot. My guy can run as fast as you want, but if he's stuck going prone and deploying a bipod every time he has to take a shot, suddenly he's not really going anywhere all too often. Slower game. Mechanics like this can be used in various ways to slow down the game without making your player feel like he's moving slowly or that he's limited. In fact, I'd say that you can make players move super fast and the game play doesn't change terribly much if your other core aspects support a slower game play style. The only real difference would be that players would get to their first engagement more quickly.

    In another way, you could even make maps a bit bigger since players won't take as long to get between points. I recall making a map and struggling to get the two bomb sites set in a way that players could go from point to point in a reasonable amount of time (plant, run from site A to site B and have a reasonable amount of time to clear the area and defuse). Even though the sites weren't all that far on the map, movement speed in the game was so slow that I had to completely rework the map in order to try to get them closer.
    You joined the world's greatest army to become a graphic artist? Outstanding!
  • Dct.F|LeventeDct.F|Levente Posts: 551Beta Tester
    The old AA mechanic of moving slower while injured is a tough one. It makes sense in some respect, but at the same time, it's added punishment to an already great punishment (being injured). It'd really have to be tweaked. If the movement penalty is slight, rather than how it was in the original AA where you felt like you could hardly move around, then it may be OK. Same idea goes for sway & recoil penalties. Adding additional Punishment to players who are injured and a single shot away from death is not something that I see as being well received. Of course, it could tie into a medical system of some sort, which I'd certainly welcome if done right. These types of systems need to be balanced between giving players a smooth and responsive feeling, to where they feel like their character does exactly what they want it to do vs. the traditional simulator feeling. To note, these are highly trained Army soldiers that we are meant to portray. They shouldn't move around like snails. Either way, if you're going to include an injury system, do it right and make it balanced.

    I personally really liked the AA3 medic system in may aspects. If you got shot, the penalty was quite bad. But if a teammate treated you, it became much more manageable. It really encouraged sticking together IMO. This made 2 players working close to each other far more effective than 2 lone wolfs. Compared to this, in AAPG you don't really get anything. (Well, technically speaking in AAPG you recover from suppression faster, if you are near a teammate. But I doubt anyone has ever noticed that during gameplay, myself included.) Sure, you can get revived more easily, but in AA3 you needed the teammate even if you won a gunfight to patch you up.

    In a twisted way I liked the bleeding as well. It helped to reduce the "last man standing camping" situations IMO. If you were the last guy alive, you often were bleeding thus you had to do something other than camping. I know that this is probably an unpopular opinion thou...

    I'd like to see at least some elements from the AA3 system return in the next title.
    Theory and reality are not that different. In theory.
  • 4DChessGenius4DChessGenius Posts: 2,124Player
    I personally despise AAPG's self-bandaging. In the older games while bleed outs were frustrating if you were all alone, it added an element of "hurry up before you die!" to the game if you were the last left or at other points it would at the very least force you to regroup with teammates in order to get patched up. It's definitely a way better system.
    You joined the world's greatest army to become a graphic artist? Outstanding!
  • .!.dgodfather.!.dgodfather Posts: 446Player
    I personally despise AAPG's self-bandaging. In the older games while bleed outs were frustrating if you were all alone, it added an element of "hurry up before you die!" to the game if you were the last left or at other points it would at the very least force you to regroup with teammates in order to get patched up. It's definitely a way better system.

    Completely agree!! Also, no one enjoys the "pick me up, pick me up", dead to body camper. If you're down, your not getting back up, simple as that. Bleed out is perfectly fine.
    Fragweiser Website
    Make AA Great Again!
  • 4DChessGenius4DChessGenius Posts: 2,124Player
    edited October 22
    I personally despise AAPG's self-bandaging. In the older games while bleed outs were frustrating if you were all alone, it added an element of "hurry up before you die!" to the game if you were the last left or at other points it would at the very least force you to regroup with teammates in order to get patched up. It's definitely a way better system.

    Completely agree!! Also, no one enjoys the "pick me up, pick me up", dead to body camper. If you're down, your not getting back up, simple as that. Bleed out is perfectly fine.

    I think it would be a huge mistake for AA5 to include the revive feature. It only leads to lazy game play and arguments.

    A damage/medical system could be as easy as follows:
    1. Players cannot bandage themselves
    2. 0% health = Death
    3. Bleed out rate is much slower than AAPG (bleeding should be more of a nuisance that maybe over time will kill you, but it should be very rare). A penalty for not getting healed could maybe force you to leave blood tracks behind you as you move and even audibly cough up blood (prevents camping).
    4. All players can stop each other from bleeding
    5. Medics can restore a small portion (25%) of life back to teammates and remove any injury penalties. Medics can heal teammates an infinite number of times, however, each player can only receive the 25% healing once per round.
    6. The players will have 5 hit boxes. Head, arms, upper torso, lower torso, legs. Arm hit box MUST allow bullets to pass through. Hitting an arm and then the chest would deal chest damage. Hitting an arm and nothing else would deal arm damage.
    7. Injuries: Shooting arms -> recoil penalty (can't hold arms as well). Shooting torso -> sway and stamina penalty (can't breath as well). Shooting legs -> movement penalty (self explanatory). Penalties should be noticeable, but not bad enough to make a player useless.
    8. Weapon damage should be balanced based on the round size as well as muzzle velocity. On average a 5.56 should take maybe 3-4 shots to kill and 7.62 2-3.
    9. Armor multipliers: Something like Light armor = 1x. Medium armor = 0.8x. Heavy armor = 0.67x... e.g., 40-32-27.

    Obviously these numbers can be tweaked as game play requires.
    You joined the world's greatest army to become a graphic artist? Outstanding!
  • doogle!doogle! Posts: 680Player
    Whiplash, you're hired.
  • .!.dgodfather.!.dgodfather Posts: 446Player
    Yep. Nice job laying it out Whip.

    What about this "Penalties should be noticeable, but not bad enough to make a player useless.". Explain that. What makes someone useless? That could mean a number of things. Compare it to different versions of the game.

    AA2 you would move slowly when damaged
    AA3 you turned cripple and lost most control
    AAPG it was only a number and you run 100% speed regardless of health
    Fragweiser Website
    Make AA Great Again!
  • 4DChessGenius4DChessGenius Posts: 2,124Player
    edited October 23
    Yep. Nice job laying it out Whip.

    What about this "Penalties should be noticeable, but not bad enough to make a player useless.". Explain that. What makes someone useless? That could mean a number of things. Compare it to different versions of the game.

    AA2 you would move slowly when damaged
    AA3 you turned cripple and lost most control
    AAPG it was only a number and you run 100% speed regardless of health

    Hard to know really. It'd have to be thoroughly tested in game. Maybe something in between AA2 & AAPG? Even in AAPG the recoil penalty when you were damaged was extremely harsh. If you were running around with 25 health using full auto was almost a waste of time unless the guy was two feet away. Have to question whether that's conducive to high level game play. The main problem I have with penalties is that it throws off everything a player knows about how the weapons react. Recoil is really the most difficult. Sway if you're using AA2 style you can just figure that the cycle will be higher/lower and/or faster. Movement speed, same idea, you're just slow.

    Recoil is almost a guess, the best I can think of is only having one recoil penalty level. Sort of a >50% = no penalty, <50% = penalty. I think about a game like CS where people memorize the spray patterns, here it's simply pull down and left, but even pull down and left people over time will learn how much to pull down and left based on muscle memory. So suddenly you've taken that skill away. I also recall Shroud (who has high level CS competitive experience) talking about it one time how he wasn't a fan of added penalties for injuries since getting injured is penalty enough. I know it's only one person's opinion, but it's worth considering considering his experience. Granted, AA is usually trying to add a bit more of a realism bend (while still keeping exciting game play), so it makes sense to add those penalties, but the balancing should make sense. That's why I say it would really need to be tested thoroughly.
    You joined the world's greatest army to become a graphic artist? Outstanding!
  • Twitchr.Carbon8Twitchr.Carbon8 Posts: 290Player
    Any slivers of info the devs can give out? Still targetting 2021?
  • doogle!doogle! Posts: 680Player
    edited November 17
    i come here now for the lols. It's really hard to imagine that the powers that be decide it's a good idea to ghost their community. But nothing should surprise me anymore.
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