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blankseplocked The downward evolution of agent missions
 
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Koinski
Minmatar
WASTELAND MINERS Inc.
Posted - 2005.12.27 11:41:00 - [61]
 

I hope the missions are bugged because i did a lvl 4 AE last night with a friend (i prefer doing them like this and if you do have a trusty friend i recomend it, for fun and time saving - back on topic) and the whole first stage agroed on him. Thats ok, because he is the tank of the duo, but i had to get in on the sniper Machariel, use it's speed to get distance and kite while the raven got away to recover cap.

Then he helped me on one of the new 5 mission series, the first part, again a full agro on one of the stages, same thing happens, i get distance, he warps out, i get aggro.

We had fun, but i doubt i could do it on a solo tempest (the Machariel belongs to my friend and i would not risk it on my own...)

griff1972
Perfect Order
Posted - 2005.12.27 11:47:00 - [62]
 

i use FOF missils on my raven not lost it yet in a mission but had to stop doing lvl 4's solo

Gretchen Dawntreader
Minmatar
Brutor Tribe
Posted - 2005.12.27 12:33:00 - [63]
 

I can only report what I hear in a channel I hang out in with some very experienced deadspace pilots, as I am mainly science/industry based...

Before RMR the general tenor of deadspace mission discussion was that it was fun, profitable, and a good place to try different setups or perfect a tank or that sort of thing. Ship loss was an occasional thing.

Since RMR, ship loss is common. People are complaining about being broke because of the number of ships they've lost.

Frankly, I'm amazed anyone does these anymore...it sounds like "oooh great a snake pit! I'll jump in and maybe find some twine and a stapler to melt down for some minerals!" All deadspace sounds like anymore is a deathtrap.

So'Kar
SniggWaffe
FREE KARTTOON NOW
Posted - 2005.12.27 16:23:00 - [64]
 

Agents should give list of 3 random missions available instead one random. Like list of 3 where 1 is deadspace another is kill and last is random of any, so players who like kill missions could keep doing these.

ro prefect
Posted - 2005.12.27 17:16:00 - [65]
 

Edited by: ro prefect on 27/12/2005 17:34:27
I agree with everything said. At my level the level 3 missions are extremely easy (never lose more then 20% of my shields), but the level 4 missions are next to impossible. And I am not basking in isk so I can't go kamakazi and lose 100mil ships left and right along with the expensive equipment needed to have any chance of winning the missions.

Sometimes I think they need level 3 1/2 missions as the difference between 3 to 4 seem so huge.

bUBbLeS
Minmatar
Evolution
IT Alliance
Posted - 2005.12.27 17:23:00 - [66]
 

Originally by: Istvaan Shogaatsu
My current record for wtf factor in this regard is an astonishing 35 minutes to kill Rachen Mysuna of the Vengeance mission with my highly skilled Apoc.


This guy is silly

he tanks my 900 DPS autocanon macherial too

had to train webby drones to be able to beat him....


Jalinti Tyris
Posted - 2005.12.27 17:33:00 - [67]
 

Even though I'm only doing level 2 missions, I've seen plenty of problems with them already.

1)Lack of variation. Even if the missions were well balanced and worthwhile, after you've been doing them a couple days you've seen them all. And then it just gets tedious. I guess the idea is that that way it's like mining ;). Every now and then one of the rarer missions that are more interesting comes up, but even then, they often involve blowing up the same ships as always.

I would suggest varying the ships more, if adding missions is too much effort for CCP. I realize that there's an attempt to flavor each of the pirate factions but the results aren't too great. Instead, why not have the same mission require different tactics? Why not have ships that sometimes resist one damage type well, other times a different type? Better still, change the ships involved so that sometimes the mission requires long range tactics, sometime requires short range, etc, and not let the player know until they arrive. Sometimes have the enemies close to the jump in point, sometimes far. Etc. It'd keep us on our toes, and make the missions interesting. I realize there is *some* variation in the missions right now, but it's not nearly large enough to require a change in tactics. (You know how to beat a mission once, you pretty much got it).

2)Difficulty - A big part of the problem is the huge difficulty gap between levels. Which is inevitable when there are only have 4 of them. But it's very easy to be in the situation I'm in now - most level 2 missions are total cake, and level 3 missions are way beyond my capability. Adding to this problem is there's too much variation within each of the level groupings, and the rewards aren't always appropriate.

Solution is pretty obvious - more levels. Even if new levels are simply like 1b, 2b, etc, and use the same missions as the level they copied, with only harder ships -- having a "tier 2" variant of each level's missions would be a big improvement.

3)Rewards - One big problem with the current reward system is agents don't value things properly. I think agents should look at the current regional average price of the things they offer, and compare to a certain range that they're trying to match in value. The fact is that CCP can't predict the market, and the result is that agent rewards vary in value wildly.

A great example is implants. Currently the game seems to think a Charisma and an Intelligence implant are worth about the same. They aren't, and everybody knows this. But making this a lot worse is when they're given out as mission rewards. They're *incredibly* valuable; in a way that unbalances the whole rewards system. I recently did a storyline courier mission (secure space to secure space, a small enough amount of goods that I could fit in my Catalyst's cargo hold) and earned a l+2 willpower implant. That's great - that one implant represents probably 20-40% of my total in game assets. But there's the rub - that one lucky mission was worth as much as weeks worth of grinding away at level 2 missions. I did nothing to "earn" that mission that's openly visible to me (CCP in their FAQ makes sure to mention that implants are random).

Great. So for one easy mission I got a huge reward, for doing 20 much more difficult kill missions, I get nothing special (except a huge number of charges nobody wants to use - thanks CCP!). That makes my 20 missions seem totally like wasted effort. Why not just wait around for another magical storyline mission?

Plus, let's not forget that the rewards for rare, difficult, missions aren't really better than the rewards for common, stupid missions. After spending all day yesterday suffering through Human Cattle, all 5 parts, my final reward was... 700k ISK. Two or three times what a normal misison might be worth - but shouldn't I get something extra? Something rare?

4)Aggro bugs - I'm out of characters, but everybody knows this one ;).

Jelmer
Minmatar
Posted - 2005.12.27 21:47:00 - [68]
 

To be honest, I don't care so much about deadspace working against any tactic, or scramblers and webby's being too annoying. What IS the case, imho, is that the gap between level 3 and level 4 is waaay too big. I have a tempest with a lot of T2 equipment and I usually race through the missions without even putting my armor rep on. The only time it takes long is when I encounter those damned drones... At this time I launch my own drones and just make coffee and see what happened when I come back.

Bottom line: too easy. But now I did two level 4 missions:
- The first: two big rats, they didn't aggro at all.
- The second: Vengeance. Judging by the reward, I thought it wouldn't be TOO hard. It took me and a friend four hours (including refitting and testing) to clear the FIRST stage... There was no way of breaking up the huuuge group that aggro'ed on warp in, and they were all within shooting range... We had to warp out 10 times or something, both flying in Tempests.

This is just idiotic. The rewards sucked, yet the mission was, with two people, undoable. CCP should just make a level 3.25, 3.5 and 3.75 or something, so you can better choose what kind of challenge you want.

I just play EVE to relax. Call me whatever you want, but going into 0.0 isn't for me. I want to wake up, make tea, do a few (too boring) missions and logoff when I'm done with breakfast. The lvl3 ones are really too frelling boring (might as well watch a Tetris demo movie) and lvl4 means I can't eat... Problem.

MrBadidea
Silver Snake Enterprise
Against ALL Authorities
Posted - 2005.12.28 10:06:00 - [69]
 

Rachen is currently tanking my torps.

6x Siege T2 + 2x BCU 1 = 10.51 ROF, hitting for 338 damage on shields. FUN.

Lesican
Minmatar
HotRock Mining PLC
Posted - 2005.12.28 11:35:00 - [70]
 

Mission aggro does seem broken at the mo. The guy at the end of Angel Extrav's spider drones for instance. They just sit there, you kill the whole lvl off and start attacking the last 2 spider drones, but at no point do they attack.... whats the point, npc's need to fight back or its too dull.
I agree on the drone AI, once they have finished blowing up what i tell them, what gives them the right to fly off 50km away and attack everything they see. Even if you click return and orbit as soon as their target explodes its 50/50 they will return before they bring a whole group on your head.
Hopefully just some post-patch tweakery is required to get the balance right, before a giant nerf the mission lobby starts up. I am actually enjoying the challenge for the first time in along time, but its a bit dangerous with all the broken bits ATM.

Ropper
Posted - 2005.12.28 11:37:00 - [71]
 

tbh i dont really now what all the fuss is about. Imo the missions are hard but fun, sometimes they are too hard for me as well, but it makes u go in in gang, which i think was the intention of lvl4 missions. Furthermore all the extra abilities the rats got now are not that much of a problem, people just need time to adjust. Why not take a cheap ship which isnt bad to lose and try the missions out. That way people can approach missions and lose a ship if a fitting doesnt work without losing billions worth of isk. Have some faith in ccp, they change stuff to make things a little more exciting again. And ive never experienced undoable missions a few weeks after patch. Prepatch i got pretty bored with lvl4 missions and now every mission makes me think and pay attention again. Which makes me more interested in the game again.

Trelennen
Disturbed Hoggs
Posted - 2005.12.28 13:47:00 - [72]
 

Originally by: Ropper
tbh i dont really now what all the fuss is about. Imo the missions are hard but fun, sometimes they are too hard for me as well, but it makes u go in in gang, which i think was the intention of lvl4 missions.

Wrong, no mission was meant to require a team: Zrakor quoted

Angelika VonTemplar
Posted - 2005.12.28 16:11:00 - [73]
 

Edited by: Angelika VonTemplar on 28/12/2005 16:11:35
I agree too.

I am on lvl 2 missions and even the change from lvl 1 to lvl 2 was a hard first lvl 2 mission, where they all had missles on me, i had to warp away over and over and finally asked my hubby to gang with me and help me finish the mission.

sucks that i had to ask for help!

The rewards are crappy and frankly getting a bunch of useless ammo as a reward is terrible.

ZzeusS
Caldari Provisions
Posted - 2005.12.28 17:14:00 - [74]
 

I can only speak to the low end - but ratting in .3 and .4 is better than missions.

I'm not sure how much level 1 agent grind I can stand before finding a level 2.

Blanca
Posted - 2005.12.28 20:20:00 - [75]
 

I hear people saying that old missions are too easy, usually folks on forum are people with experience in eve that play for at least one year but what about the beginers the newcomers maybe they want some missions too and u can't alwais have a buddy to back u up so for an average player he should have a chance to finish a mission if he warps a few times.

I hate those guys who say "the missions are way too easy, i am reading books while i do them, my fit: dread ... dread ... dread ... items and with 2 years experience all skills maxed" well thank you, i think it's normal to read books with this setup - u have some experience, u worked for those nice items u have ... but DO NOT post crap.

Jelmer
Minmatar
Posted - 2005.12.28 22:59:00 - [76]
 

Originally by: Blanca

I hate those guys who say "the missions are way too easy, i am reading books while i do them, my fit: dread ... dread ... dread ... items and with 2 years experience all skills maxed" well thank you, i think it's normal to read books with this setup - u have some experience, u worked for those nice items u have ... but DO NOT post crap.


And THAT is exactly why there should be more levels than just 1/2/3/4. Level 3 makes me want to read a book, level 4 kills me with me standing a chance. We need more difficulty levels, that's it.

Megadon
Caldari
Deep Core Mining Inc.
Posted - 2005.12.28 23:36:00 - [77]
 

Originally by: Jelmer
Originally by: Blanca

I hate those guys who say "the missions are way too easy, i am reading books while i do them, my fit: dread ... dread ... dread ... items and with 2 years experience all skills maxed" well thank you, i think it's normal to read books with this setup - u have some experience, u worked for those nice items u have ... but DO NOT post crap.


And THAT is exactly why there should be more levels than just 1/2/3/4. Level 3 makes me want to read a book, level 4 kills me with me standing a chance. We need more difficulty levels, that's it.


Agreed. Some of these lvl 4's need to be 5 and rewards and bounties made appropriate for a group.



Ashen Brarn
More-Cowbell
Posted - 2005.12.29 06:20:00 - [78]
 

ratting 0.0 is boring. pvp stuff is fun, but i used to really enjoy doing lvl 4 with others. even doing them solo was better than mining rats in 0.0, but now lvl 4's are no fun. agree with OP

Istvaan Shogaatsu
Caldari
Guiding Hand Social Club
Posted - 2005.12.31 16:57:00 - [79]
 

Redistributing the missions to more difficulty levels might work.

keepiru
Omega Fleet Enterprises
Executive Outcomes
Posted - 2005.12.31 17:35:00 - [80]
 

Originally by: Istvaan Shogaatsu
Redistributing the missions to more difficulty levels might work.


I dont know if it would. It might help some though.

And yes, DS missions generally suck.

And yes, theyve gotten very, very boring. I know the difference between the changes brought by skills getting better and the changes brought by all the patches nerfing missions into a whetting stone.

I dont know how many people i speak for, but i play EVE *for* missions. I know this will shock some people, but i dont actually find pvp to be much fun at all. Be that as it may, its the (main) reason i log on.

I used to like missions a lot, but now all i get is pigeonholed DS ****e, silly overwhelm-the-player stuff emergent from all the changes - hello insta-aggro whole stages in serp x et al, or utterly dull stuff thats plainly in the wrong difficulty level - lvl4s with just cruisers in em come to mind.

Most of the few ones that are truly good fun still (the non-ds ones with mutliple waves), are getting phased out in Kali and turned into that new bollox gateless DS-non-DS missions with no choice of warp-in point.

Not a particularly bright outlook, tbfh.

CCP: Artifically making the missions harder by "cheating" with made up restrictions does not make them more fun, or help balance the game in any way. You just make it harder for new players and give the richer ones of us more reasons to pay silly prices for pimp stuff, thus boosting complex farmers more. Please desists.

Inspiration
Posted - 2005.12.31 21:08:00 - [81]
 

Originally by: bUBbLeS
Originally by: Istvaan Shogaatsu
My current record for wtf factor in this regard is an astonishing 35 minutes to kill Rachen Mysuna of the Vengeance mission with my highly skilled Apoc.


This guy is silly

he tanks my 900 DPS autocanon macherial too

had to train webby drones to be able to beat him....




With him or the whole entire level agroing me at once I have no problem, he dies withing the minute! Make sure you do loads of kinetic damage and definatly not EM. The ammo of choice here is: Titanium Sabot!

Then again, I got easy talking as I pump out 553 **Effective DPS** (reloads taken into account and such), most of which is kinetic, but I can varry ofcourse, as 179.6 DPS from this comes from 3 cruise missile launchers I use in conjunction with my 5 1400mm guns.

I sincerly doubt you can do 900 effective DPS with autocannons, but never tried it, you might get wrecking shots each and every time (I certainly don't). As said, the guy dies with ease and I don't nearly do close to 900 DPS!

Inspiration
Posted - 2005.12.31 23:02:00 - [82]
 

Edited by: Inspiration on 31/12/2005 23:57:48
I just timed it, and I was wrong: Starting from 30km, it took me 1 minute and 45 seconds. It can varry a bit from time to time, and the closer the easyer. Still, you should be able to take him out under one minutes if you manage 900 DPS!

MrFu
Brutor Tribe
Posted - 2005.12.31 23:17:00 - [83]
 

I do missions in 0.0 space,and they are CRAP.The bounties are as nerfed as empire,and by the time you finished the mission for a stupid 2 mill reward max,you could have farmed that x3 in some belt,with risk-free npcs that dont even jam.Loot also sucks,and gas clouds lag the place all over.Agent offers are laughable.Tons of them are drone ones,that dont even have a bounty,group aggro is fubared,I shot a group today,and the whole deadspace agroed me,no matter how many times I tried warping out and back.You get jammed to no end as well by the dirty hacs and such kind.

I will whine..Rolling Eyes
/signed

Slink Grinsdikild
Brotherhood of Wolves
Astral Wolves
Posted - 2006.01.01 02:04:00 - [84]
 

Originally by: Joshua Foiritain
Deadspace was the worst addition to missions ever.


The problem is CCP caved in to WoW-like instancing. Just after WoW came out instances were hailed as the new cool and a lot of older MMO's adapted to it. There are in actual fact very few true MMO's on the market now. Many offer a sort of single Player experience online, none are truely massive in every aspect any more.

JonShannow
Caldari
Regante
Posted - 2006.01.01 11:29:00 - [85]
 

Edited by: JonShannow on 01/01/2006 11:30:43
Originally by: Tyrrax Thorrk
Missions need to be made more fun, it's pure PVE so it needs to be entertaining, it being challenging is fine, but lvl4s are supposed to be soloable by veterans with high end equipment, currently they're not fun AT ALL, they're not easy, they're not profitable. Hell they don't even fix your sec rating nicely anymore..

Move all the lvl 4 agents to sub 0.5 sec space, make them profitable, useful and entertaining, not just a horrible grind to suffer through for ISK.


Why should we have to work in 0.4 and below, so happy campers can sit off the gates etc and annoy the crap out of us like Aunamen ?

Jon

Lady Sabriel
Posted - 2006.01.01 13:07:00 - [86]
 

I just got a mission that basically was "go to this location and wait for an hour until something happens"

Not my idea of fun.

Deja Thoris
Invicta.
Rooks and Kings
Posted - 2006.01.01 19:32:00 - [87]
 

Hmm, agreed in general.

Other missions are totally borked that they are too easy now tho.

Drone missions hardly scratch my shields (and I'm an armour tank)

Duo of death has returned to the "duo of mild discomfort" and so on.

Wee Dave
Posted - 2006.01.01 23:07:00 - [88]
 

The problem is that the mission system at present is too broad-based.

The OP says he does missions solo. Pre-patch I spent some time using a corp-mate as a booster, just 3 medium remote armoure reparier Is, but that's the equivalent of an extra t2 repper. When tanked to the eyeballs in a dominix, that means I can repair what is functionally one thousand six hundred points of damage a second while still having a heavy damage output. Lvl 4s became very, very easy.

There's no way you could make the present missions better for solo players without making them cash cows for small groups.

I think that redistribution would help, but it wouldn't solve it. If you had say, a level 6 agent which was meant to be a soloable level 4, and a level 7 agent which was meant to be a level 4 done as a pair, would the rewards of level 7 be double level 6? Even then you might as well just go run level 6 solo. Or a pair could bomb through level 6s with ease and still get great rewards. Or if you made it so it was more than double the rewards, faction-equipped soloers would play them and become super-rich with little risk (once they had their setup).

A dynamic system that does a rough check of your ships and numbers then scales the dangers and rewards would be nicer, though harder to implement.

Inara Cortan
Posted - 2006.01.01 23:21:00 - [89]
 

I also do not like the Deadspace mission structure, compared to how it used to be. Deadspace missions should be, if anything, reserved for important storyline missions.

Bring back the old ways, or look into the basic structure of deadspace missions before you increase their frequency even more.

Istvaan Shogaatsu
Caldari
Guiding Hand Social Club
Posted - 2006.01.02 00:26:00 - [90]
 

If you think about it, all Deadspace is, is a junkyard of randomly strewn collidable objects and fog clouds that screw with your visibility and frame rate. What is the point of having a wall in space, for example? There's nothing pleasant about it, and I wouldn't miss it if it were gone :|


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