How do the devs determine what is considered 'fair' for buffing and nerfing in balance patches? — Guild Wars 2 Forums

How do the devs determine what is considered 'fair' for buffing and nerfing in balance patches?

Based on reading latest patch notes, I could not help but notice that it seems to be "feelings" based.

Case in point: (https://en-forum.guildwars2.com/discussion/98085/upcoming-balance-notes)

Guardian:
"We've rolled the control effect into the skill itself and increased its casting time to ensure that it feels reasonable. "

Mesmer:
"Finally, we're changing the mirage's Elusive Mind trait to no longer break stuns as we **feel ** that the necessity of including exhaustion as a balancing factor has made it too binary as a choice."

Revenant:
"In exchange, we've added a few new powerful traits with drawbacks as we **feel **this is in line with the spirit of Mallyx and skills like Pain Absorption."

This made me curious and tried to look to the previous balance patches to attempt to determine what is considered 'fair' for devs; that is, what is the basis for nerfing or buffing a particular skill. Don't get me wrong; I'm not saying they're misguided how to buff/nerf skills, but I wish devs would share what their guidelines are for buffing / nerfing skills during balance patch notes.

Comments

  • SoulSin.5682SoulSin.5682 Member ✭✭✭

    Mind me. This game can't really be placed in an excel table for balance changes.

  • Melech.4308Melech.4308 Member ✭✭✭

    @SoulSin.5682 said:
    Mind me. This game can't really be placed in an excel table for balance changes.

    I agree but I certainly don't think feelings is the right way to go either

  • Yasai.3549Yasai.3549 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 26, 2020

    They don't feel anything.
    They don't care about this game.

    This is just one of the random curveballs they throw every 6 months and decide what to nerf next.

    If they cared they would have talked to us more.
    Heck, they would have a Public Test Realm to draw feedback.

    Nope.
    They hide behind community managers, throw random balance changes, leave several bugs still in the game, go silent for another 6 months.

    If I play a stupid build, I deserve to die.
    If I beat people on a stupid build, I deserve to get away with it.

  • They don't. It is all random.

  • Rettan.9603Rettan.9603 Member ✭✭✭

    In general it's not bad to trust your feelings when you have a lot of experience. But even then it helps a lot to use tables and and reference values (as they did with 2.0 and 0.01).

  • in general, they listen to what people are wingeing the most about on forums (squeaky wheel gets the grease).

    for this update, they went super lazy and just pained a broad stroke over anything that heals or ccs not considering how useless certain skills already were (did you really need to nerf renegade shortbow..smh)

    also, the fact that dh/fb doesn’t yet have a tradeoff is ludicrous.

  • ZDragon.3046ZDragon.3046 Member ✭✭✭✭

    To be honest up till now i want to assume there probably was no real main factor they looked at what was over or under performing and tried to make it so that they could be either bought down or up while also keeping them strong in pve but now just recently anet chose to do pvp and pve splits which allows them to start making a standard.

    I would say this patch was not so much to balance but to get to a starting point where balance could be achieved in the future with ease. IT will also make getting data on things easier now that they for the most part dont need to consider how changing one skills damage or a traits effects could out right kill a profession in end game pve.

    Overall though its likely gonna be based on the percentage of players playing a certain build or profession. If after patch a bit shift to firebrand happens for example expect it to be culled down some to balance the spread back out. A large number of players believe it or not like to play flavor of the month or patch and just jump to what ever is the easiest thing to win with.

    I would also guess that was part of their balancing strat in the past. The game gets very boring once a certain percentage is just playing the same build on the same profession. Even more so when you have people demanding their hard counters be nerfed (and then anet actually nerfs them)...

  • xDudisx.5914xDudisx.5914 Member ✭✭✭

    They probably gather data from pvp, wvw, spvp. Most used classes, builds, weapons, stats, combinations, skills, etc. Seems unreasonable that they would be taking directions without any metrics supporting. Saying "we feel ..." in patch notes is ok. We are not expecting them to write a thesis explaining the technical details that lead to the change.

    That said, not everything can be measured. They probably also account for players feedback, fun, etc....

  • Obtena.7952Obtena.7952 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited March 12, 2020

    @Melech.4308 said:
    Based on reading latest patch notes, I could not help but notice that it seems to be "feelings" based.

    Case in point: (https://en-forum.guildwars2.com/discussion/98085/upcoming-balance-notes)

    Guardian:
    "We've rolled the control effect into the skill itself and increased its casting time to ensure that it feels reasonable. "

    Mesmer:
    "Finally, we're changing the mirage's Elusive Mind trait to no longer break stuns as we **feel ** that the necessity of including exhaustion as a balancing factor has made it too binary as a choice."

    Revenant:
    "In exchange, we've added a few new powerful traits with drawbacks as we **feel **this is in line with the spirit of Mallyx and skills like Pain Absorption."

    This made me curious and tried to look to the previous balance patches to attempt to determine what is considered 'fair' for devs; that is, what is the basis for nerfing or buffing a particular skill. Don't get me wrong; I'm not saying they're misguided how to buff/nerf skills, but I wish devs would share what their guidelines are for buffing / nerfing skills during balance patch notes.

    It's not based on fairness ... and there isn't any reason anyone should think it ever was or will be. But it's not random either, like some people would like you to think. Based on observing the game and the language used when they release patches, I believe what they change and how much they change it is based simply on class theme.

    If you think balancing is only driven by performance and justified by comparisons to other classes then prepare to be educated:

    https://www.guildwars2.com/en/news/balance-updates-the-heralds-near-future-and-pvp-league-season-13/

  • Sleepwalker.1398Sleepwalker.1398 Member ✭✭✭✭

    They skim thru the forums and see which class ppl whine about the most.
    They then go to the board and start throwing darts.
    I have a feeling either 1 of them has very good accuracy at hitting mesmer or mesmer covers most of the board.

  • dodgerrule.8739dodgerrule.8739 Member ✭✭✭

    It’s partial experimentation based on feedback via the forums

  • Diak Atoli.2085Diak Atoli.2085 Member ✭✭✭

    @Exalted Quality.8534 said:
    in general, they listen to what people are wingeing the most about on forums (squeaky wheel gets the grease).

    for this update, they went super lazy and just pained a broad stroke over anything that heals or ccs not considering how useless certain skills already were (did you really need to nerf renegade shortbow..smh)

    also, the fact that dh/fb doesn’t yet have a tradeoff is ludicrous.

    If it was based on the forums, every class would deal 10~ dps and have 50 health...

  • Stand The Wall.6987Stand The Wall.6987 Member ✭✭✭✭

    a combination of AT representation, the obvious, forum complaints, their feels and bias, and whatever their internal testers tell them (if they even exist).

  • FrownyClown.8402FrownyClown.8402 Member ✭✭✭

    They made changes to necro fb and ranger in the last month based on forum complaints.

  • Moradorin.6217Moradorin.6217 Member ✭✭✭
    edited 2:38PM

    @Diak Atoli.2085 said:

    @Exalted Quality.8534 said:
    in general, they listen to what people are wingeing the most about on forums (squeaky wheel gets the grease).

    for this update, they went super lazy and just pained a broad stroke over anything that heals or ccs not considering how useless certain skills already were (did you really need to nerf renegade shortbow..smh)

    also, the fact that dh/fb doesn’t yet have a tradeoff is ludicrous.

    If it was based on the forums, every class would deal 10~ dps and have 50 health...

    No no, then everything WOULD be perfectly balanced! =)

    Really that's part of the issue. Perfect balance = zero diversity

    Practical applicable balance IMO means build diversity, class diversity and each class has an equally viable roll for each mode, but not always the same role. This IMO leads to certain classes always seeming OP to certain other classes while at the same time feeling under-powered vs certain other classes. Then if/when they balance based on bias feelings from people who don't like being countered or beaten or that each class even their has a weakness complaints sourced from this perspective it seems easy to imagine how they could end up making so many apparent mistakes with balance.

  • pninak.1069pninak.1069 Member ✭✭

    that's not the only issue. Sure you got class mechanics, but also different armor and traits and some classes have it easier reaching the ideal position for their builds while other classes don't get enough from traits and have to get their stats from somewhereelse. For condi for example. If you got trailblazer's with tempest runes on a rev. it is gonna have 100% condi duration. but for ele you won't be able to reach the 100% unless you eat buff food.