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Fractalising Fractals


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Here's an idea to make fractals a lot more interesting than they currently are

Fractals

  • Completely randomised instances based on themes and combinations of those themes with puzzles and generic monster types associated with each fractal

  • A range of personalised fractal instances including the currently existing fractals

  • Fractal tier indicates level of difficulty and complexity (there are still 4 tiers), agony levels are variable based on the tier and randomisation criteria

  • Completing multiple fractals of the same type of fractal in succession will increase the chances of a storyline fractal appearing for that type

  • Once you play a storyline fractal in a tier you unlock that storyline fractal for that tier

  • Some storyline fractals cannot be played or unlocked at that tier even though its type can be, once unlocked it can be played as per normal game

  • This means that each person's fractal list will be different but whichever one is chosen will be playable by the rest of the group regardless as long as it's chosen on the panel

  • Low complexity fractals may not even have bosses

  • Hard mode will maximise the difficulty of each fractal so tier will only be relevant for complexity, low complexity fractals may still not have bosses at the end

  • After completing the tiers to 100, players have the option of choosing the criteria for fractals

  • Some fractals may not have enemies but have puzzles or jumping puzzles, maybe even dialogue problems

  • Some fractals will use features and masteries from different expansions and combine them, so get out into the world and get those mastery points!

  • Some fractals may require different builds but still accommodate any party combination that can occur

  • Some fractals, if only partly completed, may have a reset button at the beginning so that the format is different, cutting the completed bits of the level off and randomised the remaining bits of the level

  • The progression value is not hard set to restart and could be generated based on the metrics associated with individual characters combining it for the group but the randomisation is unfiltered so may be less preferential than the previous level however the rewards may be greater

  • Because this is a new system players will have to restart their fractal journey all over but retain any items and unlocks that they have acquired over their character's lifetime

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@Bob bobington.9057 said:Here's an idea to make fractals a lot more interesting than they currently are

Fractals

  • Completely randomised instances based on themes and combinations of those themes with puzzles and generic monster types associated with each fractal

Sure, but each of those instances or part of an instance still needs to be created and made to fit with all the others. What you are proposing is a completely new system which has had 0 work on so far.

  • A range of personalised fractal instances including the currently existing fractals

What for?

  • Fractal tier indicates level of difficulty and complexity (there are still 4 tiers), agony levels are variable based on the tier and randomisation criteria

Since you haven't specified how exactly the randomization is supposed to work or implemented, maybe?

  • Completing multiple fractals of the same type of fractal in succession will increase the chances of a storyline fractal appearing for that type
  • Once you play a storyline fractal in a tier you unlock that storyline fractal for that tier
  • Some storyline fractals cannot be played or unlocked at that tier even though its type can be, once unlocked it can be played as per normal game

What's a storyline fractal and why should we care? Where is the benefit to the player unlocking them?

  • This means that each person's fractal list will be different but whichever one is chosen will be playable by the rest of the group regardless as long as it's chosen on the panel

Wait, the game is supposed to save the randomized fractals individually for each player? Not going to happen.

  • Low complexity fractals may not even have bosses
  • Hard mode will maximise the difficulty of each fractal so tier will only be relevant for complexity, low complexity fractals may still not have bosses at the end

Most fractals now do not have bosses, are there now suddenly bosses in fractals?

  • After completing the tiers to 100, players have the option of choosing the criteria for fractals

What about players who are already level 100? What about all the current fractals and the development which went into them?

  • Some fractals may not have enemies but have puzzles or jumping puzzles, maybe even dialogue problems

Sure, but those do not exist yet and dialogue problems while fun in games like Baldur's Gate get boring real fast in MMOs, especially when people know them by heart or use guides. Not a good way to use for rewards in a MMO. What prevents people from restarting until they get text adventure fractals?

  • Some fractals will use features and masteries from different expansions and combine them, so get out into the world and get those mastery points!

Sure, what about people who do not own the expansion relevant to the required mastery? Simply put: won't work.

  • Some fractals may require different builds but still accommodate any party combination that can occur

Okay, how? This is very easy to write, very difficult to actually implement.

  • Some fractals, if only partly completed, may have a reset button at the beginning so that the format is different, cutting the completed bits of the level off and randomised the remaining bits of the level

  • The progression value is not hard set to restart and could be generated based on the metrics associated with individual characters combining it for the group but the randomisation is unfiltered so may be less preferential than the previous level however the rewards may be greater

  • Because this is a new system players will have to restart their fractal journey all over but retain any items and unlocks that they have acquired over their character's lifetime

So in essence you are suggesting a completely new system for fractals requiring starting from scratch and using almost nothing of the existing system. At the same time you prefer a very strong randomized element which in some places is not well or thoroughly explained. Considering most people run fractals eventually only for the rewards, where is the benefit to the players? Where is the benefit to the developer when they have to completely start from scratch?

Sorry, not going to happen.

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@"Bob bobington.9057" said:Here's an idea to scrap fractals and spend a whole lot of resources on a totally new system that replaces something that doesn't need replacing or fixing

Fractals are fine the way they are. Sure, things can always be improved but ANet worked hard on the existing content to minimize RNG while keeping up the challenge. RNG is always a frustrating """""""""mechanic""""""""" for me. I want to know and analize what's ahead. I want to learn. I want to improve. When the dice decides everything, from assets to mob placement, from difficulty to required AR, from doing a 5min rush to doing a 30min chore there's just not enough to "do the maths" with. Also, seeing that player will allways go the path of least resistance or "most loot per time", a system with so much RNG will bring us back to the "searching for swamp" era of fractals, something ANet again has been working hard on avoiding.

"searching for swamp" explained to the newer players: back in the days, dailies were structured differently. Instead of asking you to do a specific fractal, like aetherblade, swamp or nightmare, the dailies required you to do a fractal of each tier to complete the daily and get the reward. The result was that ppl often did the same easiest/shortest fractals and never set foot in the ones that took longer or had hard encounters. Even further back, when players could only select the level of the fractal, not the fractal itself, players would simply check in to fractals, see what fractal it was and if it wasn't swamp(the shortest/easiest at the time) they'd log out and try again until swamp popped up. Like this players avoided the harder/longer fractals while still getting daily rewards. (It's been a while and I might remember some of these things incorrectly, but I think fractals back then kinda were like this)

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Swamp was the shortest??? j/k Once, I was in a PUG group, and they kept resetting the wisps until they got the "easy" path. With some failed runs, iirc, it took us FOREVER to get past that part, because they refused to do any wisp but the "easiest" setup. I didn't know much about fractals then, so I just sat there and did nothing and waited. PUGS are fun. lol

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@"JDub.1530" said:Swamp was the shortest??? j/k Once, I was in a PUG group, and they kept resetting the wisps until they got the "easy" path. With some failed runs, iirc, it took us FOREVER to get past that part, because they refused to do any wisp but the "easiest" setup. I didn't know much about fractals then, so I just sat there and did nothing and waited. PUGS are fun. lol

Well, the part with the wisps was there too and it wasn't changed much in the last 5 years. However, both possible bosses at that time could be easily "outwitted" and basically stack'n'smacked and killed in a minute.Do ppl still reset the wisps to get an easier spawns?

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@segman.3560 said:

@Talindra.4958 said:I think best fractal update will be...

removing social awkwardness

I was always ok with SA, ppl can still stack good enough to make it not matter that much. Hamstrung in fractals that require moving through a mine field that constantly deal damage is just straight up bs, looking at you Chaos and Urban Battleground fractals.

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@lokh.2695 said:

@"Talindra.4958" said:I think best fractal update will be...

removing social awkwardness

I was always ok with SA, ppl can still stack good enough to make it not matter that much. Hamstrung in fractals that require moving through a mine field that constantly deal damage is just straight up bs, looking at you Chaos and Urban Battleground fractals.

I have this to say - instabilities are bad design in general. Their universality makes them impossible to balance because different instabilities have different impact for ever fractal. These things should be unique per fractal/boss, not a list of cheap gimmicks slapped over content and calling it "mechanics". Instabilities are not mechanics.

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@segman.3560 said:

@"Talindra.4958" said:I think best fractal update will be...

removing social awkwardness

I was always ok with SA, ppl can still stack good enough to make it not matter that much. Hamstrung in fractals that require moving through a mine field that constantly deal damage is just straight up bs, looking at you Chaos and Urban Battleground fractals.

I have this to say - instabilities are bad design in general. Their universality makes them impossible to balance because different instabilities have different impact for ever fractal. These things should be unique per fractal/boss, not a list of cheap gimmicks slapped over content and calling it "mechanics". Instabilities are not mechanics.

Tbf, I think they have a "whitelist" for instabilities on any given level to remove very frustrating combinations. I don't run fractals enough to judge if the system is working or fun at all though. I like the instabilities and the way they are randomised. Again, when they weren't, players just opted for the easiest way to get the reward, i.e. they did the T4s on whatever level had less anoying instabilities. Randomizing instabilities keeps things fresh, so I'm fine with that. It's just certain combinations that don't resonate well with me. Hamstrung with chaos fractal, especialy the part where your group has to run through the icy cold while damage is ticking, making you slower just feels wrong and frustrating. The fractal itself is ok as well as the instability itself, it's the combination that's ridiculous.

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@lokh.2695 said:

@"Talindra.4958" said:I think best fractal update will be...

removing social awkwardness

I was always ok with SA, ppl can still stack good enough to make it not matter that much. Hamstrung in fractals that require moving through a mine field that constantly deal damage is just straight up bs, looking at you Chaos and Urban Battleground fractals.

I have this to say - instabilities are bad design in general. Their universality makes them impossible to balance because different instabilities have different impact for ever fractal. These things should be unique per fractal/boss, not a list of cheap gimmicks slapped over content and calling it "mechanics". Instabilities are not mechanics.

Tbf, I think they have a "whitelist" for instabilities on any given level to remove very frustrating combinations. I don't run fractals enough to judge if the system is working or fun at all though. I like the instabilities and the way they are randomised. Again, when they weren't, players just opted for the easiest way to get the reward, i.e. they did the T4s on whatever level had less anoying instabilities. Randomizing instabilities keeps things fresh, so I'm fine with that. It's just certain combinations that don't resonate well with me. Hamstrung with chaos fractal, especialy the part where your group has to run through the icy cold while damage is ticking, making you slower just feels wrong and frustrating. The fractal itself is ok as well as the instability itself, it's the combination that's ridiculous.

Instabilities do nothing to actual gameplay. The only thing they achieve is to break combat flow or annoy people. They do not keep things "fresh", all they can achieve is to discourage people from playing when certain instabilities/combos occur.

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