Alarm Animals


#1

So far to my knowledge we have two creatures that causing alarm when the monster gets too close to them. Those creatures being the Meercat-like Spotter and the flocks of bird-like Batrays.

In the E3 gameplay we see that Hunters can just casually stroll through these flocks and right past them.

I would argue that this isn’t balanced.

The creatures of Shear should be a completely neutral force, and both teams should be fully able to potentially exploit them. They should not take sides in this conflict. If anything gets too close to the birds, it should startle them. Especially if the hunters are firing any of their weapons or running too quickly near them.

This would solve the issue the Monster currently has, which is having no way to determine where the hunters are if they are outside of his relatively short Smell radius. It would allow the monster a reliable way to avoid and/or hunt the hunters, depending on what stage he is.


#2

I want to say that hunters can upset birds. I think it showed up in some of the E3 footage, but my memory of it is a little fuzzy.

As for other alarm animals, there are Harpies that occasionally will fly down and snack on a corpse that the monster just ate. Trapjaws could also be considered alarm animals if you are close enough to see where the pack is going.


#3

I can honestly say I never saw that. In the E3 footage, I saw Hunters walk straight through flocks of birds while firing rocket launchers, screaming mini guns, and scorching flamethrowers, and the birds would just stand there unflinchingly.

And not once did I see something notify the monster where the hunters were.


#4

I think animals should be startled regardless of which side the players are on, as it adds to the feel of this being a truly hostile world that reacts with player involvement. It would also add an extra level of depth for hunters/monsters with keen eyes, seeing off in the distance that the flock of birds in the air has only just shot off and thus there’s something in that direction. We have the scent/footprint mechanic already but this could add an extra level of depth.

In the end I would say that if only the monster alerts the creatures at the moment either remove the ‘alert’ altogether or - and this is what I would prefer - have it so they react to both. Plus when engaging in combat, the animals nearby scream while escaping to perhaps enhance the tension and fear.


#5

I am pretty sure I saw that too, I dont think it told the monster the birds were scared, but they did fly away really fast…


#6

Originally the Spotters would sound an alarm when the Hunters, or even predators got near, and birds would be flushed when Hunters got near and they’d circle over Hunter wildlife kills. But this lead to confused playtestors. Keep in mind that spotters also trigger Griffin’s Sound Spikes. So you’d be running along, scare a Spotter that you didn’t see, the Spotter would sound the alarm and your Sound Spike would ping, and you’d think that the Monster was there, but it wasn’t anywhere nearby. We had Hunters chasing their tails hundreds of meters away from where the Monster actually was. Huge confusion and frustration. The Hunt game broke down, so we pulled that behavior and made it simple. If you see birds, or hear a Spotter alarm, it’s the monster. You can count on it. Simple is, often times, best.

Birds will still fly away from Hunters if they get too close and land somewhere else nearby, but they won’t scare into the air.

The Monster can smell the Hunters anyway when they’re within striking distance, and hear their jetpacks from across the map so being alerted to their presence through other methods hasn’t been important.


#7

I respectfully disagree that the Monster not knowing where the hunters are isn’t important. As it stands the Monster only has a very short-range way of knowing where the Hunters are without getting shot or having direct line of sight on them.

In contrast, the Hunters have a wide multitude of ways to always know exactly where the monster is, ranging from the glowing blue trail, to screaming Spotters, to flying Birds, to Daisy who always knows exactly where it is no matter what it does.

The choice to remove non-hostile wildlife reacting to the hunters at all means the monster can never actively hunt the hunters or set up an effective ambush without just hoping the hunters follow its footprints directly and waiting. The monster it seems is permanently stuck on the defensive, never able to fight on his own terms and hoping the Hunters simply come to him, until the third tier, where he knows that they will go to one place. Assaulting a fortified position isn’t hunting the hunters, nor is it an ambush or anything hunting related. It’s simply a siege.

Personally I think that highlighting the monster’s footprints blue and making a big red ring appear when birds get scared makes things too easy for the hunters. If they get confused for scaring the wildlife themselves, that just adds another learning curve for them and all in all makes the game more in depth and less “Follow the blue trail and red rings to the objective.”


#8

I think you’re looking for “Big Game Hunter Simulator 2014” :wink:


#9

I think you dont fully understand what the point of the monster is. He has no intrest in finding the hunters. He just wants to get away from them to get stronger at the start. When he has become strong enough to start a fight (stage 2, full armor) you can use all those things like your tracks, the birds etc to lure them into a trap.

There is no point in hiding for the hunters. Seriously, if your having so much trouble finding the them, why don’t you just eat more wildlife, get to stage 3, armor up, get a a buff or two and head for the generator? It may seem boring but it is how the game is designed. The hunter have a lot more tools to find the monster because they have to. The monster doesn’t have to find them.


#10

I am talking about when you have become strong enough to fight them, you have no way to find them other than to wait or keep eating. You can never fight on your own terms.

As E3 has shown, even a Monster with completely full health and armor can and quite possibly will still die quickly to a team of Hunters that have no down penalties.


#11

No, there is no way you can convince me that a stage 3, full armored and holding 1/2 powerful buffs (cooldown reduction buff for instance) can take down the hunter team.

And even then: He can buff up, go in, get some strikes without losing armor (which should be doable if you have full armor and buffs) and get out. That way you have dealt strikes while they havent touched your health. Even against Lasarus, just focus him, get him down 1/2 times and get out. Armor up, and now your fighting them with a very easy to kill Lasarus.


#12

It has already happened. An untouched stage 3, full armored, full healthed monster attacked the hunters at the E3 tournament. The result was utter defeat.


#13

First of all, he didn’t have an elite buff. And he misses his first three vortexes completly. Do you have any idea how big the AoE on vortex is? come on… this is clearly a huge skill difference.

I’m done argueing as well. You’re obviously pro-monster player who thinks the game is heavily balanced towards the hunters. You were probably one of those people who cried ‘Lazarus OP!’ when he was first shown.


#14

The fact that the player did not play how you specifically would have played does not change the fact that an untouched Tier 3 monster failed utterly to even kill a single hunter when at full health and armor.

This is why the monster needs options to know where the hunters are, both to avoid them in the early stages, and to hunt them at the later stages, before they simply fall back to the dam.

And no, I am by no means saying the hunters are overpowered. I am simply saying the options to hunt the hunters back should be more open to the monster than it currently has, and that the wildlife itself should not hold a bias against the monster. At the very least, the wildlife should become frightened when the hunters fire a weapon near it.

There is no need to get upset, i’m here to have an intellectual discussion, not argue.


#15

I watched all these matches live, the Nerdist tournament?, and it was an awful tactical play by almost every monster. It wasn’t until the Evolve Devs played that we saw a Kraken actually focus on the medic after the first team member incap. You have a guy that brings people back from the dead with full health and those playing monster just let Laz run around free and easy.

We then saw games where Lazarus got downed and focused and the monster was on top easily.

Take this footage specifically. Fully tiered up but misses most of their lightning attacks. We saw in later (dev) matches that a full aftershock setup gave massive gains in this particular set-up because you ended up being brought down to close quarters a lot. In fact in this particular fight he chose to go close quarters despite this more ranged setup, we saw in the dev matches that there was a more “wait and pounce” strategy employed by the monster which allowed them to avoid the flame thrower damage and choose moments to make a focused assault to incap key players.

tl:dr; The strategy by the monster Nerdist crew was below average, they had played Goliath before and it showed in how they played Kraken, by contrast they all understood how to be a hunter team better. It’s no good citing this tournament as proof of anything re: game balance.

Edit: Also, I don’t want to turn this into a more general game balance discussion given the topic title, but from a gameplay point of view you can’t have the skill gap between the two teams too different where you are creating a game where it is the strategy and skill of each team that decides outcomes in battle.

In a game called Natural Selection there was the situation where teams needed to work their way up to superiority. Marines would get more resources and gain weapons and armour quicker than the aliens could evolve abilities, or vice versa the aliens would evolve new species and abilities faster than marines could equip themselves to deal with it. This was Unknown World’s way of dealing with bringing the end-game forward, actively unbalancing the teams as one was more successful. Based on RTS games this made sense.

Here the game isn’t based around resource hunting or similar, it’s based around picking the right time to fight, and fighting the right way. You don’t need to have the monster level up so the hunters have little chance to win because the game isn’t set up to keep going on forever. The monster can’t regen health, so he either has to fight smart or die. At stage 3 he should of course have a little more leniency, the odds slightly in his favour…but only slightly, otherwise where is the fun?

The Devs have said the game averages in at around 12 minutes long, and that’s without the monster or the hunters at any point being significantly overpowered than each other. There is a preconception that I think comes a bit from the PR that the stage 3 monster should be something hunters are scared of…but that doesn’t make a fun game.

Say the stage 3 monster was almost guaranteed a win unless they screwed up, you know what would happen? Players on public servers would say “gg, stage 3, bye bye” and leave knowing that at best the game would be a quick and boring/frustrating death that they have no chance to fight away from. I don’t really want a game, nor do I think anyone else does really, where for a percentage of the game time one team or the other isn’t having fun and is just a perfunctory prop for the end game sequence.


#16

It incapped two at least, it then left them to get revived. It was 50% of the way to a win.


#17

Yep, just like I said. The skill difference between the monster player and the hunter team was just too big. Too many skillshots missed and he didn’t really have a plan of attack for the final battle.


#18

Are you really suggesting that adding an additional layer of strategy for the monster when the monster has very few to begin with would be a bad idea? Yes, there was a skill gap. I’m not denying that had the monster played smarter and more beneficial to its Kraken class that it could have won. I was providing the video to show you that simply turning tier 3 does not mean that you win if your health is high enough.

Had the monster played smarter, or been able to actually whittle down the hunters more and get some Down penalties on a few of them before the final fight, things would have played much more heavily in the monster’s favor. Granting the monster some ways to observe the environment for the location of the hunters would allow the monster to be able to get those down penalties on them, and better yet, fight them when it wants to, rather than whenever they track it down or when they fall back to fortify the dam.


#19

Uh, the monster doesn’t have “very few” strategies, the monster has tons of things they can do to achieve victory.

Anyways, @MacMan responded to you why they didn’t do it and you chose to ignore the ones who have been testing this game for 3 years.

Also, the monster won’t have to look for the hunters, they will be looking for him at stages 1 and 2 while at stage 3 the monster will be able to go to the generator and if the hunters choose not to be there…well monster wins.


#20

I did not ignore MacMan, I responded to him directly after he posted. I respectfully disagreed with the reason he presented and spoke why I disagreed. I’m not here to argue with anyone, i’m here to have an intelligent conversation and to voice my opinions.

The “very few” strategies I was talking about all pertain to strategies the monster has to fight the hunters on his own terms, in an area he chooses. As it stands, the only way for a monster to do this is to sit and wait for the hunters to catch up if he feels confident in his own ability. If he manages to down Lazarus, the monster is going to want to be aggressive and actively try and take down the Hunters while he can. If just one escapes, he has no way of tracking him down.