Mordhau

General Feedback Alpha Build #8

Knight 253 546
  • 7 Oct '17
 Gauntlet

Alpha Build #8
Thoughts since launch:
I'm currently 145 hours in and loving every second of Mordhau. The gameplay feels unique but familiar to fans of the melee genre. I'm still improving every time I hop on, and that's a very good feeling. I can't wait to see what archery, objective modes, and ranked MM brings to the table.

Pre-game

  • Server queuing would be a huge QOL boost. It's a huge area of frustration to try and join a full server - have it send me to a loading screen that spits me out back in the menu with an error.
  • Customizing the menu - I would love to be able to customize my main menu screen so it's how I want it to look when I launch. Being able to select which character will be displayed, with a selection of different backgrounds from in-game map locations would be great. I would also like to be able to right click and spin my character around in the menu.

In-Game

  • Headtracking is too responsive - it sticks to players who are fairly far from the player, and sees players through obstacles.
  • Third person spectate while locked on a player is very jittery.
    Would love for this to be resolved as I cannot record or watch other players in this perspective without feeling a headache from the jittering animations. It would also be great if while in third person spectate locked onto a player that you can use the scroll wheel to zoom in/out.
  • Desperately in need of a proper implementation of votekick. I will copy and paste a post from way back when on the subject:

    Votekick should exist but it can be implemented much better than in Chivalry.
    Example: In Insurgency if someone calls a votekick, it requires multiple people to go through the menu and try to votekick said person before it shows up on everyone's screen for a vote. Usually requires at least 3 or 4 people to initiate. This removes all of the rage votekicks people will put up on one accidental tk. It won't stop groups of players from abusing that though.
    There are Chiv servers that have votekick disabled. I avoid these servers because they become home to the players who like to tk, or for hackers because no one can remove them. No votekick requires constant admins to be online, which isn't a realistic goal.

  • AFK auto-kick for idle players. As I typed this monstrous post I've been sitting in a server because I forgot to exit. Woops!

Combat mechanics

  • Chambering leg strikes is frustrating.
    The current way to chamber an overhead/horizontal leg strike is to crouch and move into the strike while chambering. The reason this is an issue is determination of a leg strike. At the moment it either comes from someone incidentally telegraphing their intended target too early, or knowledge of player behavior. Trying to do this on reaction - I usually notice the sudden change of target from high to low but at that point it's too late to rectify the chamber attempt and instead requires a panic ftp.

  • Tracer detection for team hits is unforgiving.
    With the current animations (both horizontal & high angle overhead strikes) it's very easy to tap the player next to you at the tail end of your strike. This makes fighting next to your teammates a messy affair at 100% team damage w/ flinch.

  • Team damage
    I know the devs have spoken about having weapon stops on team hits. I would really like to see this soon! I've noticed several problem players already beginning the habit of "sacrificing" teammates to secure last hits on enemy players. Particularly the spear wielding fiends.

  • Shields are currently too difficult to deal with in 1v1 - there doesn't appear to be much counter play. Trying to kick a back pedaling shield user doesn't work as all they need to do is turn sideways, have lighter armor than you, or jump back to avoid it.

  • It is hard to determine what is choked up / choked down with the Q-Staff at Camera distance = 0 (Default setting). Grips can be confusing in the first person perspective for certain weapons. Some form of UI notification of stance would be greatly appreciated.
    Ex: altgripuiex.jpg
    This UI notification can slowly fade, it's just meant to briefly let you know what grip you currently have. Perhaps a toggle-able UI element for those who don't have this issue?

  • Kick morphing
    Currently you can morph into a kick from an attack, and morph out of a kick into an attack. Against good players you can bait an aggressive chamber by starting an attack and morphing into a kick which your opponent will in this scenario - run into.
    However if you start a kick and morph into an attack, well, the amount of times I've ever felt the need to do this in combat is about zero. It doesn't really do anything in particular. I've never tricked anyone with this, or had anyone trick me with it. What has happened though, and very frequently, is that I intended to kick my target and started queuing the combo for my attack off that kick "too soon" and started to morph, causing me to lose that opportunity. Sometimes this mechanic will get me killed because I was relying on that kick. At the very least I would like the option to disable morphing out of my kicks, because I will never use it but it has screwed me over quite a few times.

  • Disarmed!
    Currently it doesn't feel very punishing because of the loss of initiative. If the disarming player hesitates to see what their opponent will do and they pull out a weapon, there is no punishment. Why would the player who did the disarming hesitate to punish? This is because after disarming a player, they will have initiative. If the disarmed player intends to punch, they have first strike. A fist hit is ~30 damage, which is not something to be ignored. To add to this, the animations for fists are currently very placeholder. Determining a windup can be extremely difficult in certain lighting situations (think interior of grad, or in the shadows of contraband), or if your opponent uses some form of torso rotation to hide the windup.
    An example of a player who forgot about the loss of initiative after disarming his opponent: giphy[1].gif
    While you can with some skill avoid these kinds of situations, it doesn't seem to make a whole lot of sense that after disarming your opponent that YOU must be careful since they have the first move.

  • Determination of swing angle
    Swing angle is easy to determine assuming your opponent fights in an upright posture. The issue currently is that swing angles can be easily masked by using torso mechanics. Combined with drags, determining an angle and time for which an attack will land can become even more difficult.

  • Drags
    Currently a hot topic in this community. My current impression of drags (2h drags in particular) are that they remind me of what I disliked most in Chivalry. What I feel epitomizes Mordhau combat mechanics are two rapier players fighting. The combat is fast, exciting, and features some small real time swing manipulations to prevent constant chamber warfare. I feel the gameplay should be more chamber-centric and feature less delayed drags.
    Example of where I think Mordhau combat shines
    Example of where Mordhau combat reminds me of Chivalry
    While not the optimal play style to constantly delay, and very much so punishable, it's a noob mower that will inevitably hurt player retention when new players see what appears to be exploitative crouch-looking into the sky delays. These complaints should not be ignored.

  • I'm not sure how I feel about the vampiric life/stam on kill currently implemented. It doesn't really bother me unless my nearby teammates are running around naked trying to help me kill an opponent. Those naked players then become easy one shot health packs for the enemy. There is however, a huge benefit of getting some health back on kill when fighting multiple opponents, and seems like a necessary mechanic to keep players in the fight instead of doing the health regen walk after every fight.

  • The role of chambers
    I rarely use chambers as a means to strike, but more as a set up for performing a series of morphs, feints, and drags to bait parries. Players can usually parry a chambered attack with ease based on just sound cue. Maybe when stamina becomes more of a factor in fights with actual parry negation values for weapons will using chambers as a form of winning the stamina game become valid, but at this time they are best used with feints and morphs.

Weapon balancing

  • Poleaxe alt grip damage winds up being almost as effective as an evening star, with the added bonus of being a poleaxe for powerful stabs, reach, & axe head for light armor. In my opinion the blunt should be a two shot with one headshot & one body or leg hit.

  • Rapier HTK on medium armor could use a bump up of 1 htk. At the moment a rapier headshot stab and torso stab will two shot medium armor, which with the rapier speed is frightening for anyone not in plate armor.

  • Billhook is in a woeful situation. Clearly outclassed by any weapon of similar function.

  • Zwei/Halberd - have incredible damage, delay potential, strong accelerations, and reach. So where is the weakness? Slow windups are not a weakness in games with timing based parries, as it adds to their drag potential. I feel like the damage should not be so high because much like a spear, they have very formidable reach. The way I see a zwei / halberd is like a spear that uses slashes instead of stabs as a primary attack.

Knight 2306 4188
  • 7 Oct '17
 Runagate

I agree with all of these. Great post.

2428 4937
  • 7 Oct '17
 Maci

you my new fav mod now

Knight 697 1611
  • 7 Oct '17
 das

Gauntlet! I'm saddened we still haven't dueled yet in Mordhau, it only took you a day or two to become leagues beyond me in Slasher and I want to see for myself how good you've gotten in Mordhau now!

I 100% agree with the leg hit phenomenon and torso hiding anims. As mentioned pretty much anytime the question "What's Mordhau's biggest problem right now?" is asked, readability is the #1 issue. Upright attacks and ripostes are fine, but it becomes weird and you-must-panic-parry-this very quickly with the extreme torso manipulations you can do.

Void | Bang is an excellent example of a player who forces me to play Chivalry rather than Mordhau. His attacks are all 240 and are already ambiguous as to whether they're overhead, horizontal, or underswing. Add in extreme drags and torso twisting, and it's pretty much impossible to chamber his attacks (he even says so himself when he asks if you're chambering, to which he replies "good luck"). Ripostes are tough to read the exact animation and thus counter-chamber as well due to torso hiding, so you just have to parry the instant you think his animation looks semi-ripostey. The only way I beat him is if I manage to chamber one or two "freebies" (e.g. he stabs or does a clearly animated attack), then engage in Chivalry: Stamina Warfare by continually engaging only in ripostes and parries from then on so I don't get fk'd by attempting to chamber ambiguous attacks.

Speaking of stamina warfare, I completely understand the woes of disarming an opponent but still feeling scared. At the same time, I kind of like it not being a total freebie. You can still technically counter whatever they throw out at you, then riposte into a guaranteed hit. Kick clash, parry into riposte, I'm not sure if you can chamber fists though cause it didn't seem to work when I tried. But rather than remove the ability for them to do anything until they pick up the weapon, I think they should change this instead: reduce fist damage to something like 10 or 15, better animations, and parrying it with any real weapon costs 0 stamina.

Some Chiv veterans will disagree, but I whole-heartedly, 1000000% agree with your stance on drags and Mordhau's general direction, and I think a lot of newcomers and prospective players would as well. Which is why I think weapons like Eveningstar are really important inclusions to the game - it's novel and interesting to fight with and against a weapon that is so different in its potential and playstyle, like the Maul in Chivalry, but imbalances are exacerbated and potentially polarizing on such weapons because their strengths/weaknesses are that much more noticeable. I'm not sure exactly what needs to be changed right now, but it does seem like a mechanic that will absolutely slaughter noobs without even drastically adding much depth to high level play (except for fooking foot drags) since it's not very tough for good players to parry these.

I completely disagree with the life leech mechanic for the final release. It ruins XvX in my opinion because teammates can feed, which promotes snowballing of the team who's up by one player even more. Maybe in the future, slain enemies will drop bandages that take 2 seconds to use? Some sort of faster healing does need to be added for the main game mode to avoid walking simulator.

I agree, chambers as straightforward attacks usually won't land a hit against decent players, but people do miss the point of them having so many options at a fast speed. People often only see "chamber not rewarding enough, people just parry", but it's like having a free +5 cards in a TCG, you get a host of options: chamber, chamber morph, chamber morph feint, chamber drag to bait out counter-chambers, chamber morph drag to bait out recorrection morph chambers. I think that role is fine as is, stamina warfare is absolutely a big deal when I verse hyper-aggressive enemies like Void | Bang or, say, someone using a 1hander + shield.

Kick morphing... boy do I understand that feeling. I do have one instance where I've wanted to morph a kick into an attack: I start a kick, but I see I'm out of range and, rather than feint and give my opponent free initiative, I want to morph into an attack to still apply pressure. But the kick->attack morph window is so tiny that I've always ended up just kicking air and getting dunked, lol. Yet, when I want to kick, I'll try to queue the follow-up attack but sometimes do it early and just end up morphing the kick and getting dunked cause of the delay. I do think it's not 100% useless because of that potential edge case, but... yeah.

Concerning kicks, I've had a couple moments where I see my enemy wind up a kick so I wind up my point, but theirs just straight up hits me before mine goes into release. They've reported that they saw me winding up my kick as well. I don't understand why it's not clashing, my leg didn't extend or linger around for my hitbox to be kicked. Rare.

100% agree on team damage. I was a bit disappointed when I saw that friendly fire doesn't immediately halt your weapon as if you got parried or hit a wall.

As for shields, there was an idea I found interesting: https://mordhau.com/forum/topic/11190/shield-mechanic-improvement-ideas-from-your-friend/

Basically, the shield player can still hold blocks, but if they hold-block an attack rather than "parry" it with timing, they won't be able to riposte and the aggressor can continue wailing on the shield user until the shield user "parries" and thus ripostes or chambers an attack. This way, you still need to mount some sort of offense as a shield user but the shield still provides a safety net of sorts. So, still objectively better than just using a 1-hander without a shield, but not oppressively so.

Good thread Gauntlet.

301 875
  • 7 Oct '17
 Naleaus

So this is why you stopped fighting the cavemen. I guess it was worth it. I agree on most everything by the way.

Count 671 1131
  • 7 Oct '17
 Zexis

Regarding vampirism and zwei/halberd, I think we have to wait for perks. Vampirism could be a perk itself and top tier weapons should be very powerful, it's just there are no perk drawbacks yet.

Sellsword 615 1381
  • 7 Oct '17
 BobSapp

thenks for post, gnautelt. This is why I want forum feedback, it's a good place for people to present points to both the developers and the community with easy reference. I think public discussions allow the most important issues to coalesce

I have to agree with nearly everything, except for 1h combat compared to 2h combat. I understand what you're saying in that it lacks that nauseating C:MW feel, and that's good. I feel like 1h fights can devolve the same way 2h fights can though, with players trying to mutilate their animations to be as unreadable as possible. It's a different method with the same result, just without the insane C:MW drags.

People are always going to do this, it's on the game to not help them do it. This is what I mean when I say the game can "mask attacks for you", as opposed to making players do it themselves. I know that's a little cryptic and nonsensical but that's the best I can explain it. The game should telegraph naturally, it's on the player to fight it a little bit to be unpredictable.

It's really cheeky right now; nothing is telegraphed very well, yet we also give players a lot of agency to hide attacks. It's given us a predictable end result in readability issues if you ask me

However I think both this

Swing angle is easy to determine assuming your opponent fights in an upright posture. The issue currently is that swing angles can be easily masked by using torso mechanics. Combined with drags, determining an angle and time for which an attack will land can become even more difficult.

and this

I feel the gameplay should be more chamber-centric and feature less delayed drags.

will get both 1h and 2h combat where I think they should be. So I think these are the combat priorities.

Knight 697 1611
  • 1
  • 8 Oct '17
 das

Concerning perks, Void | Bang actually brought up some interesting topics I haven't seen here that should be discussed furthermore:

  • Overpowered Weapons & the Perks System

    To rely solely on the perks system to "balance" out weapons like the Zweihander is artificial and a cop-out. Instead, the weapons have fundamental issues that won't be fixed by simply restricting them to light/mail-armor only.

I understand the sentiments. An 'overpowered' weapon doesn't feel fun or fair to fight against, regardless of if you can 2-shot the guy using it or not (case in point: Vanguards).

  • Backpedal

    There's no reason to not backpedal and that it makes footwork overall simpler than Chivalry. And that advanced footwork like serpentine, sprinting backwards, weaving in and out during teamfights has been neutered, making teamfights duller in Mordhau than in Chivalry.'

I don't agree with the first part, I think sidestepping and such are quite potent in Mordhau. Backpedaling is pretty powerful, yes, but I think once we have proper objectives and duel maps, this isn't going to be such an issue. Backpedaling, while creating space and thus making you less susceptible to difficult-to-read/facehug maneuvers, also concedes center stage. In current duel maps, there isn't really an "out of bounds" so yes, you could be annoying and keep backpedaling around the map. However, in a proper duel map, the two of you will be confined to an arena, and there will be a "sudden death" black cloud of death that slowly engulfs the map when duels go on too long. Thus, if you backpedal too much, you'll be on the ropes with no more space to backpedal, which is a really bad spot to be in: you're super open to kicks, and your enemy can pretty much dictate how the spacing and tempo of the fight can go from there on. As for objective-based matches, well, you can't take an objective if you just keep backpedaling and remain in the sights of archers.

I haven't done any organized XvX in Mordhau, so I can't really speak to how emphasized/de-emphasized footwork is in there. But in the few pub 1vX's I've done, positioning myself to not be sandwiched and creating space with riposte-parries while running away or to the side was pretty damn important lol. I prefer Mordhau's direction leaning more to tight timings and chamber/morph/feint play over drags and Vanguard knockbacks anyhow.

Knight 253 546
  • 1
  • 8 Oct '17
 Gauntlet

@das said:
Speaking of stamina warfare, I completely understand the woes of disarming an opponent but still feeling scared. At the same time, I kind of like it not being a total freebie. You can still technically counter whatever they throw out at you, then riposte into a guaranteed hit. Kick clash, parry into riposte, I'm not sure if you can chamber fists though cause it didn't seem to work when I tried. But rather than remove the ability for them to do anything until they pick up the weapon, I think they should change this instead: reduce fist damage to something like 10 or 15, better animations, and parrying it with any real weapon costs 0 stamina.

To be honest I'm not sure what I would do to change disarm mechanics to better benefit the disarmer without making it too much of a guaranteed hit. Maybe reducing fist damage is the way to go, I do find it odd that fists hit as hard as some 1h weapons even on armored players.

I completely disagree with the life leech mechanic for the final release. It ruins XvX in my opinion because teammates can feed, which promotes snowballing of the team who's up by one player even more. Maybe in the future, slain enemies will drop bandages that take 2 seconds to use? Some sort of faster healing does need to be added for the main game mode to avoid walking simulator.

I definitely notice that snowballing effect from vampirism. If there was a way to determine situations where the odds are fair vs situations where it's 1vX, I think it'd be a more solid mechanic to give some bonus to an outnumbered player. I believe this mechanic is experimental and not likely to exist in its current form for much longer. Perhaps an uninterruptible regen that starts on killing blow can take the place of the instant health boost we currently have - up to a certain value.

I agree, chambers as straightforward attacks usually won't land a hit against decent players, but people do miss the point of them having so many options at a fast speed. People often only see "chamber not rewarding enough, people just parry", but it's like having a free +5 cards in a TCG, you get a host of options[...]

There definitely is a lot more to chambers than a strike. It is a mechanic that provides huge offensive opportunities and ways to counter feinting. The current implementation of chambers seems fair for the utility it provides.

@Naleaus said:
So this is why you stopped fighting the cavemen. I guess it was worth it. I agree on most everything by the way.

That was a very unique experience today. I had a lot of fun with that.

156 238
  • 8 Oct '17
 elToroGuapo

"145 hours in"

god damn Gauntlet.

1 0
  • 8 Oct '17
 Slippers

Evening star alt grip plus light or no armor desperately needs to be fixed. I've encountered a certain player who basically made a super fast high damaging heavy armor killer by combining the shockingly fast and strong alt grip evening star stabs and it's 2 hit kill swings. Combine this with some drags and torso manipulation and there's just no way to not panic. Best way I think to fix this is slow down the stab speed of the alt grip evening star or just reduce its alt grip damage for both stabs and swings.

King 9 20
  • 8 Oct '17
 Knil

I have to agree with pretty much everything Gauntlet said. We need to fix mechanics that look wonky to fight against (ie. drags) because the whole point of this game is too fix all the ridiculousness from Chivalry.

There's no quicker way to get new players to quit a game then to feel like they are fighting against someone that is exploiting. Fights must look like fights not staring into the ground or sky to accelerate or decelerate your attacks. An easy sanity check for if a mechanic is silly: does it require you to not look at your opponent? Then yes it's silly.

Also kick morphing has killed me so many times because I'm trying to queue up a swing. (please fix)

King 18 76
  • 11 Oct '17
 ClockTower

And they don't walk like horses.

Count 887 3301
  • 12 Oct '17
 EatAtRedLobster

Good post G.

One suggestion regarding the AFK auto-kick. I think it should have an activation threshold so people can still go AFK for extended periods to help populate low and empty servers.

IMO activation once the server hits a total player count of around 6+ would work well.

56 179
  • 12 Oct '17
 GandaPestile

Gauntlets points on being disarmed are something I have had an issue with from the start. I think it's something chiv got right, that if you lose the stamina battle you will take a guaranteed hit. This made for really tense moments of footwork and calculation where it could go either way (as both players are one hit) and whoever forced a ftp or such would win skillfully. Here losing your weapon in a 1 hit scenario is not a disadvantage at all as fists are faster than most weapons and the act of disarming is not generally one you expect to combo through. The player who played worse and lost the stam battle is given initiative? I have killed and been killed by fists in such a scenario way too many times.

In addition it is much too easy to footwork and dodge attacks. I'm not sure what is mechanically wrong, but I think that it is much to easy to just wiggle your body unpredictably and force a miss. The obvious thing to do after you fall for a feint is to try and dodge it, but I think this is much too easy to perform and succeeds more than it should. Mordhau's attacks move faster than a game like chiv and when you take into account the turncap it is much more difficult to drag attacks into players e.g if they go for a jump on a footdrag their jump is much faster than your reaiming.

Finally I personally dont like kick. More than anything I see it used offensively, rather than as a punish. It is very very painful to get kicked by someone into your riposte because they do it as early as possible, which doesnt happen often but to happen at all is bad. I dont think it really counters "facehugging" but rather people who stand still in front of you; a normal fight the only time two players are at facehug range is in an exchange of ripostes where kick isnt viable. In 1vX kick is pretty horrible to deal with e.g you riposte onto one player and get kicked by the other.

Duke 162 274
  • 1
  • 12 Oct '17
 BEACHES

Kicks gotta be changed. They are infuriating. Someone can combo feint into a kick and unless your accelerating your swing it's going to hit you. I understand it's a counter to long drags but all it does is encourage more acceleration gambling and rock-paper-scissors mentality.

The times were it hits my hand hitbox from way too far away make me want to go play Mirage.

111 131
  • 12 Oct '17
 Bang

This is going to be controversial... but they should remove the ability to chamber ripostes and slow everything way the fuck down. I'd rather have everything much slower, with more parry lockout and windup, than to be able to chamber a rapier riposte with a zweihander.

Mercenary 46 59
  • 12 Oct '17
 Mizikiell

@Bang said:
This is going to be controversial... but they should remove the ability to chamber ripostes and slow everything way the fuck down. I'd rather have everything much slower, with more parry lockout and windup, than to be able to chamber a rapier riposte with a zweihander.

How can you complain about something that takes extremely high skill to do against a good player? Chambering rapier riposte takes insane reaction even with low ping.

111 131
  • 12 Oct '17
 Bang

Because it deters from footwork, target-switching and team-fighting if we'll all jack-hammering each other. This isn't just a 1v1 game.

Duke 162 274
  • 12 Oct '17
 BEACHES

@Bang said:
This is going to be controversial... but they should remove the ability to chamber ripostes and slow everything way the fuck down. I'd rather have everything much slower, with more parry lockout and windup, than to be able to chamber a rapier riposte with a zweihander.

I feel butt-clashing/active parrying is the bigger problem in teamfights. Makes things super inconsistent.

Clashing in general I'm not very fond of as a mechanic. It just provides more incentive to keep pushing the attack and harder to punish spam.