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I don't want to, but I don't like to lose. And you don't either.

WaharaWahara Member Posts: 215
edited November 2019 in General Discussions

So, this topic is going to be sort of broad but I'm going to my best to keep things in a general ball park of sorts. The core of what I want to discuss is how to satisfy both major parties that play this game: casually and competitive. Now, I understand that the common argument: this game isn't a competitive game, it's a party game. It makes no sense to balance around high rank play. The developers have even stated it's designed to be a casual game.

Okay. There is an element of truth there, but what I think people miss is that what a game is designed to be or intended to be isn't the final word on what a game *is* I'm sorry if that sounds needlessly philosophical, but one comparison I like to make a lot to illustrate is smash brothers. It was never designed to be a competitive game, but it became one. People that loved the game created a scene and starting hosting tournaments and Nintendo was so upset that their party game was being "hijacked" by "maniac" players they tried to snuff out the competitive scene completely.

The point being is that the player base ultimately has the final say on what a game is, and whether it's designed to be a party game, a large portion of DBD's player base is competitive. So, the question isn't whether or not DBD is a casual or competitive game, the question is, how do you satisfy both parties? When people argue it's simply casual and not competitive by way of design, it's not only fallacious in my opinion for reasons mentioned, it serves to snuff out a good portion of the player base.

Those of us who are competitive don't have any I'll will toward a casual audience, but you can maybe sympathize with the frustration that the only killers capable of going up against the best teams are consistently nerfed, the ratio of effective killer perks to survivor perks is quite small, and the speed in which generators are completed is blistering quick, at times, irrespective of whether the killer played all their cards correctly.

As survivor, the obvious complaint are Mori's, being camped and tunneled. I hate these things as survivor because they are low skill strategies, they're not fun, and it sucks knowing you lost a game you would have won because no one on your team had borrowed time or you couldn't manage to find all the totems before NOED activated. And as killer, I hate being forced to camp, I hate being forced to tunnel, but I don't like to lose. I do my best to be fair if I have a lead or early game, but if I'm behind, I'll proxy camp. I'll slug. I'll tunnel. I want the W. Which brings me to my next point. Be honest, you don't like to lose either. As much as people scream and scream this game is casual, don't tell me that if you're a survivor, you dont want all of your teammates to escape. And if you're killer, you'd generally prefer to 4k.

Yes, you should care about fun and not just winning. That goes for any game! Even explicitly competitive games. But I simply won't hear that a large part of having fun is intrinsically linked to victory - out playing, out smarting, and down right curb stomping your opponent into the dirt. You like that, you find that fun, it's why you're playing a PVP game in the first place, and if you claim otherwise I call BS.

So, with all that established, what can be done? How do satisfy both parties? It should also be noted that I accept that DBD is an assymetrical game and by nature difficult to balance, that's true, but I will not hear that it's "impossible" DBD *has* come a long way. I don't expect to get an all around solution - merely a concession, perhaps, that both voices in this community are VALID and merit consideration, and an effort to move toward something equitable.

So, I guess the first question to kick things off, how do we design a killer that can compete evenly with knowledgable, organized teams but has a difficult enough learning curve to where they would be scarcely seen at low to mid rank play? Or is that the wrong place to start? What's your take?

Post edited by Wahara on


  • Mister_HoldoutMister_Holdout Member Posts: 2,499

    I enjoyed reading this. You seem to understand both sides of the community pretty well.

    If the player base was large enough, I would suggest separating ranked and casual play.

    But since we don't have that, we'll have to rely on the devs to make the right decisions. In light of the Nurse update however, I don't have much faith in the devs.

    Maybe they'll change their ways down the road, but I'm not optimistic.

  • premiumRICEpremiumRICE Member Posts: 702
    edited November 2019

    I think multiplayer pvp games should be balanced around competitive play. It seems pretty obvious why people are there. Why most killers run best addons or survs run insta heal toolboxes etc. They want to win and the win condition on a pvp game is to stomp the other player(s).

    as you stated, you dont tunnel etc IF you are doing well. Thats sort of lame in my opinion cause you are not fairplaying you just chilling cause you are stomping the game. Its like survs who stays and loop after the doors are opened.

    anyway the best way to balance this is to set a meta, make sure is not crazy overpowered and rotate the meta every now and then.

    by doing that you assure that the win conditions even at high level of play is skill. And that keeps the game entertaining and alive. Dbd is not the horror novel game of sort is a PvP game and PvP doesnt go well with casual playing because people are competitive by nature.

    I dont mean that this game cant be played casually you can play however you want but you cant expect to balance the game around you running no mither and no one left behind and not taking the effort to learn how to loop for instance.

    And before everything else I would like devs to take priority on servers and the dc issue. Those things are ruining the game experience, not killers playing spirit or survivors using DS

  • PwnedcastPwnedcast Member Posts: 8

    I really enjoyed this because you encompassed both sides fairly. I as a killer main agree. Gens need to move slower or tools or any perk offering boost should see a little less of a boost because most survivors perks are pretty high. So balancing items might be a good place to start. But then it also follows suit of perks and how they effect the over all game play. When you get down to it I feel each aspect of the game needs a little more tuning but I think infinite loops should be fixed. If you give survivors a lot of killer perks then giving them a loop your basically forcing our hands to tunnel or camp and like you said I don’t enjoy it. It brings me no pleasure ruining other games because a game says well that’s your only answer. So loops might be a good start.

  • DeKillerKillerDeKillerKiller Member Posts: 547

    I like to see myself as a fairly casual player on both sides. However I have gotten competitive when I feel like it. The rush you get after winning a game you were about to lose or the confidence boost you have when you decimate your opponent. That's something that I genuinely look forward to everytime I play DBD. Less to stroke my ego, but more to boost my self esteem if I am doing fairly well.

    With how the game is currently being handled community-wise, I don't think the Casual and Competitive playerbase can be 100% satisfied. A lot of the complaints are derived from a more personal experience rather than an objective point of view. I know my complaint of Object of Obssession if mainly from my personal experience going up against SWF kill squads in Red Ranks. Maybe it's unjustified to nerf that perk, maybe it is. Whatever it is I have no say in the matter. The Devs do.

    I don't think even if you make a killer that is 100% balanced will you be able to satisfy both groups. Freddy right now is arguably the most balanced he has ever been in recent years. His power is not powerful but they can be devastating when used correctly. Yet people still disconnect against him as a protest. He also has the highest kill rate according to the devs. Which is what scares me.

    Maybe I should stay a little bit optimistic, but most people forget this game is a 4v1. 1 Survivor should never have the ability to 1v1 a killer. That would never happen in the movies and it should not happen in this game. Because the killer is already outnumbered by 3, he doesn't need to get his ass handed to him with just one of the four.

    Sure a killer can still get kills, but that depends on the survivor's mistakes and a large amount of game sense, basically being a fortune teller, of what will happen in the game. If there is a killer that is 100% balanced, I assure you both groups will still yell bloody mary because they can still get kills.

  • JawsIsTheNextKillerJawsIsTheNextKiller Member Posts: 2,126

    I'd start balancing by looking at what everyone is and is not running.

    Why does nobody play Legion? Why do so many play Spirit?

    What perks are everyone running? Which perks are they not running.

    All these things need tweaking quickly. We had killers that were "overperforming" for too long and killers that have been trash for too long. Plenty on the forums have offered easily changed suggestions to rebalance some of these things but realistically, minor changes need to be easy to do and happen quickly. The devs should not be afraid to make changes to numbers here and there and by ready to revert them if they do not work out.

    Is DS overpowered? If so tweak the numbers (the stun time or the active time). Is NoEd overpowered? if so find something about that perk and tweak it (the movement speed for example)

    Nobody should be saying, if you want to win, you need to run killer x with these perks or a survivor with these perks.

  • DeKillerKillerDeKillerKiller Member Posts: 547

    The fact I have to consider running Blindness addons or perks everytime I play Red Ranks should tell you how often I run into that specific perk.

    I don't normally come into the game expecting to win, but I also don't expect to just lose and give the survivors a victory lap into the exit gates.

    But when I know there's going to be perks like that one I tend to just accept I won't win unless some miracle happens.

  • OmegaXIIOmegaXII Member Posts: 1,603

    To answer your question, nurse is probably one of it. But its so frustrating to play as her now, even she maybe still is the strongest killer.

    I think they need to buff solo survivors to SWF level, and buff all killers because there is NO way to nerf SWF without harming solos. Full optimal SWF team is still the most broken thing in this game, and they are taking away the potential killers that can keep up with them with the reason "to make them more fun"

    They need to balance the game more often, not just a big update once a few months

    The tutorial should show new players that camping and tunneling is not valid strategy against good survivors. They did a poor job on giving tutorials in my opinion

  • WaharaWahara Member Posts: 215
    edited November 2019

    One tired point that many revisit is giving the killer tools that incentivize going after multiple targets. The sad fact of the matter is, there will be situations that the killer finds themselves in where lame strategies like tunneling will be their most optimal path to victory. I'll cite one example where the developers have succeeded and one where they have failed.

    The success story, in my opinion, is the dying light + thana combo. This combination is extremely strong on killers that have good pressure. I run this on hag with nurses and ruin. Ruin gives me set up time, people get caught in the web, I get multiple people injured, and then I start getting stacks of DL. I play very aggressively after my web is set up and corral survivors, then mid to late game I retreat back and focus on guarding a 3 gen. I typically have 5 or 6 stacks of DL and no one, God rest their soul, is getting anything done. I rarely feel pressured to tunnel unless I'm going up against a 3 plus tool box team. So, A+ to the developers on the dying light rework.

    The failed example is furtive chase. It's very clear the developers designed this perk to encourage the killer to switch targets, but the reward you get for doing so is near worthless. Your stacks are erased if the obsession dies, and the terror radius is only reduced in a chase. If they simply reworked the perk to where the terror radius was reduced in or out of a chase, and you kept your stacks so long as the person who died was the new obsession, the perk would be amazing! The killer would do their damndest to switch targets, and it wouldn't be over powered, because there would still be immense risk to abandon a chase a killer knew they could win in favor of seeking out another stack.

    So, I do think one of the first places to start is incentives, but where the developers are struggling, in my opinion, is making the incentives more optimal than simply shoving out the weakest link in the game. An incentive has to be designed to be stronger than the strategy you're trying to discourage, otherwise, don't bother.

  • Jb94Jb94 Member Posts: 112

    I appreciate the effort that went in to articulating yourself regarding this topic-well done!

    That said: your main issue seems to be that the discourse surrounding the game favours the argument that the game should be fun over the argument that it should be competitive. I feel like this is a somewhat false dichotomy however- every big change made to the game that I can think of has had a positive impact on the game as a whole, effecting both casual and competitive. Some examples:

    -EGC removed the unfun hatch standoff, but also added a lot of strategy to the endgame on both sides.

    - Freddy being unplayable was a massive meme for a long time (this was exaggerated as few people took the time to work out his strategies, but he was definitely at a disadvantage in many ways). New freddy is not only more fun to play, but viable at high ranks.

    - Leigion was genuinely harmful to the game due to the many bugs that came with his original kit. While it sucks that Leigion is in a rough place now, of broken legion and nerfed leigion I'd rather have the second in the game (I'm confident they'll get looked at again, it's just going to take time).

    Apply this to whatever- instaheals unfairly made the killer's life harder, without any skill involved. Nurse was an auto-Dc for half the PC player base (don't condone, but it happened a lot) now she isn't. Looping is boring on the killer side, reworking loops has made truly good survivors stand out as they know how to mind game rather than run in circles. DS was a get out of jail free card, now it's situationally a get out of a jail free card (that high rank survivors love to abuse)- it's a step up

    I'm baffled by the demands I see on this forum on a daily basis. For an asymmetrical game, a LOT of work goes into balancing the gameplay and player concerns are CLEARLY catered to: just not as instantly as people seem to like.

    The nature of a metagame is for the community to pool information on performance in game until the most streamlined strategy is discovered. In this regard it actually wouldn't matter if every killer got a buff to get closer to the spirit's level: if one exceeded her, that would be the new killer you see almost every game- if not spirit would remain supreme.

    As much as the killer roster can seem a little limited at high ranks there's a lot more variation in killer than survivor. A team might appear to be comprised of a Kate, a Nea, a David and a Dwight but at red ranks what you're actually playing against is (most likely) x4 DS x4 dead hard x4 borrowed time and x4 adrenaline. The meta is built around individual survivors wasting as much killer time as possible while avoiding dying- while obviously no one wants to die, red ranks know that 1 person removed from the game changes the dynamic hugely, hence why high rank players will intentionally hijack chases/ take hits on death hook/ run two perks based around avoiding tunneling. Getting tunneled isn't fun. Avoiding getting tunneled is meta. Again, these two concepts happen to go hand in hand.

    Bacially my point is that both sides ARE being catered to which is obvious when you take a step back and look at the progression of DBD as a whole- for people who play on a weekly if not daily basis, all they see are the minute details that frustrate them, hence why this forum is actually quite bad for healthy discussion about the game.

  • WaharaWahara Member Posts: 215
    edited November 2019

    I concede that many of the changes have been good for both parties, (as I believe I clarified in my opening post, saying that DBD has come a long way, balance wise) what I'm disputing is the on going narrative that competitive wants don't matter because the game "designed" to be casual, as if that's the final say in the conversation, mostly coming from survivor mains, but people who play killer as well.

    Where the conversation is in the community typically dictates what the developers next course of action is. This months conversation has been largely centered around spirit, and the developers have responded with a rework. If the conversation is moving toward a consensus that the game is only meant and designed for casual play, I think that influences the development teams inaction or action towards the games progress. We don't ever want that to be something they can fall back on when people are calling for meaningful change.

  • JawsIsTheNextKillerJawsIsTheNextKiller Member Posts: 2,126

    Have they announced a rework for the Spirit this quickly? Legion mains (and Killer mains to be honest) will be crying in their basements if Survivors have managed to coax the devs into a change in such a short space of time.

    This is what happens if we allow "Buff Legion" posts to slip off page 1.

  • Jb94Jb94 Member Posts: 112

    I guess my point was that both sides are catered to, so the precise discourse amongst players doesn't matter all that much. So yes, the idea that the game SHOULD be casual and anything that stands in the way of this goal isn't healthy, but I don't think it's taken on board by BHVR. The devs are actually really good at discerning which complaints are valid IMO- that's why I listed examples of times when this process has been successful. I can't think of a single case in which the game was changed to cater to casual gameplay that had a negative impact on the competitive side.

    Moving on- I think you're conflating the argument that spirit is unfun to play against with the argument that spirit disrupts survivors ability to play casually. Both are true, but one way that the spirit is 'unfun' to play against is the fact that she doesn't take a lot of skill to play well and that interactions with her feel luck based on the survivor's part. Spirit is now in a similar place to where the nurse was, but WITHOUT the caveat that nurse takes time to learn and skill to play well. She's not as strong, but anyone can play well with her- that doesn't seem like it encourages competitive play, just complacency for killers who don't want to have to develop their skills in the game. I'm a killer main at rank 1 and I mainly play Freddy, hag, Trapper and Plague atm- I 'win' (4k or 3k with a hatch escape) the majority of games I play with all four. The idea that spirit is the only viable red rank rank killer is propogated by people who only reach red rank because of her. Building the game around the power level of the spirit would be just as unhealthy as building it around casual play in my opinion.

    TL:DR- I agree that designing the game solely around casual play is a bad idea. I have never seen an example of this happening in-game and don't feel changes to the spirit would indicate that this is the route the devs are taking.

  • WaharaWahara Member Posts: 215
    edited November 2019

    I think it's important to note that inaction or hesitance/resistance to action is just as important in determining who's voice holds the most sway at a given time, such as the dev's outright refusal to touch gen speed times (which is agreed, typically, by both sides to be an issue) and releasing bandaid or gimmick perks to mull over a core problem with the game is a valid example of catering to a casual audience. Well, using the term "catering" pre supposes intentions, which I guess is unfair, but that's the effect. It should also be noted that the stated changes we did manage to get took constant and consistent complaining. It took YEARS to get old DS reworked, just as an example. By comparison, the nurse has been consistently nerfed over and over, when not even the nurse has stood a chance against the best teams running the best perks.

    And since most people agree that the ranking system is only semi accurate, I don't think that's a fair metric to judge who is and isn't competitively viable. If we're judging simply by viability at red rank play, every single killer is viable. The game is perfectly balanced. I held rank 1 on PS4 with wraith, and he's widely considered low to "meh" tier. Competitively viable entails that you stand an equal chance against the best of the best, not decent, not good, the best. Hence, why I asked in the opening post whether discussing how to design a competitively viable killer was the wrong place to start, and whether the ranking system was where to begin instead.

    In regards to spirit, I don't really see how she's easy to play, but that's just me. I've always struggled with spirit, but let's just say that's true. It's not really a relevant argument for a nerf - lots of characters in many different games are powerful with little need for advanced, technical skill. That's usually the recipe for what makes something top tier to begin with. As an aside, people made the same argument that nurse is brain dead and simply muscle memory - no skill involved, so naturally I'm skeptical about people who say the same for spirit. The ability to predict movement based observing previous patterns *is* a skill, not a game of dice as most people seem to suggest.

  • RydogRydog Member Posts: 2,644

    Given the time commitment that the level of grind in this game demands in order to reasonably get anything unlocked, it cannot possibly be classified as "casual" by any stretch of the imagination. Anyone who thinks otherwise is just flat-out delusional.

  • Nazeef13Nazeef13 Member Posts: 346

    Balancing around a competitive level just means that everything fun will be nerfed to the ground so that every match is fair.

    The beauty of this game is that different sides have different tools in different matches. It keeps the game from being repetitive and stale. The balance comes over several games, where sometimes survivors are heavily sided to win with purple flashlights or key + map, but other games killers brought ultra rares or a Mori. If you play a 100 games, it should balance out (50% escape or 2 kills per a game, if skill is controlled for). But if you play just one or two, well whether your side is favored is up to rng. I definitely prefer it this way, and love deciding pregame, " do I want bring strong tool/ add-ons this game"

    Destiny 1 was a pvp fps that no one considered competitive. There were definitely some sweats going on behind the scenes though. The balance in that game came from all weapons and classes being op. It was fun being op, but many (especially sweaties) didn't like that cause they would die to op things occasionally out of their control, even though they had those same tools. So everything got slowly balanced and nerfed into the ground, game modes became 4v4 instead of the 6v6 chaos, and d2 ended being the most boring pvp experience for a recent fps, and the game flopped.

    I don't want this happening to dbd, where both sides get nerfed for balance, instead of the player base understanding that the op things in the game balance the scales out already.

  • MisterCremasterMisterCremaster Member Posts: 613

    I wish they were able to be more agile in their development with frequent updates.

    I think another big problem was too many new killers, too fast. They have way too many variables now.

    I'd love to see a perkless week where no one can use perks and see what happens. Or incentive not using them by multiplying BP for each open perk slot.

  • TheMikeOTRTheMikeOTR Member Posts: 54

    Let's ignore our history for the sake of this discussion.

    DBD is in a strange place where this game is obviously an indie game but with a huge player base. The devs like to drop huge updates every 3 months, during the middle of those 3 months they want to release a new battle pass. So give or take BHVR will be releasing something new every 1.5 months. Now they want to keep the game alive and keep the players happy and playing and thus it seems like they HAVE to put updates. Now here comes the problem with that, the game has some balance issues and huge bugs. So when losing, is it really our fault due to the mistakes we made in game? Or is it due to the fact that the game [BAD WORD] us over because it has bugs and dumb issues which creates problems?

    Of course the community has a bit to blame as well because some players can be outright toxic and thus lead to people being toxic to fight the toxicity. Basically, a circle jerk of toxicness. (I keep losing my train of thought because it's late lol).

    ANYWAYS. The game needs to be "fixed" and by that they should go and do the route of an Operation Health like Rainbow Six did which was meant to fix many issues with the game. I'm sure most of the player base will understand that we can skip a Chapter in order to give the devs time to fix many of the bugs in the game. Now in the case of losing, man who cares. It's a game and DBD as you said isn't competitive, so you shouldn't care if you lose or not. Tho DCing from a game sure as hell shows that you do care but that's not an attack on you, just a statement.

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