Mordhau

Instant Hit Discussion

Knight 1269 3807
  • 24 Nov '18
 Frise

@das said:
Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't you say that no one in BR Mordhau did any waterfalls and wessexes

I did say this and it's mostly true, in the sense that none of us do them when playing seriously or 'competitively'. Some of us do know how to do them, and when someone does one to me it genuinely feels good. Everytime it happens, which is rarely, because either nobody attempts them or they get backparried, it puts a smile on my face and I feel the urge to compliment the other dude. Very similar feeling as when, in TF2, you airshot by a really good soldier or demo. You got absolutely destroyed but the other dude did such a good play that you just smile.

tbh I think it'd be interesting to try a reduced horizontal parrybox (but not vertical, cause footdrags feel awful)

I think vertically it should be reduced too. However, the patches where footdrags dominated where fucking awful. Still I think that going for the feet should be a valid tactic, albeit, not nearly as powerful as old footdrags. I would shorten the height of the parrybox and bring back the overhead curve tracer, the one that turned into a slash mid-release. This way you'd have to actually aim for the feet or even crouch to pull it off, telegraphing it so that the other player has to react to it and can even punish it with a jump on reaction.

Why is "just chivalry" bad? That was the whole point of Mordhau, a chiv that wasn't broken

Plenty of reasons. First one, serious competitive Chivalry was in all fairness, quite a boring melee game to look at. Yes, we veteran nerds almost orgasmed at multiple feint reads in a row, but when you look at serious duels between top tier players, they are just boring to look at. My turn to feint, your turn to feint. Eventually a gamble/punish or a reverse. Chivalry did have an additional element to the combat though: reverses. Obviously I'm glad they're gone, and they were broken as shit, but they added depth to the game. They were an additional tool that had a big risk element. Mordhau doesn't have them, but has morphs instead. However, morphs in their current implementation are only useful as mini-feints, and in turn add almost nothing to the depth or the spectability of the game.

Chivalry was special to us because we made a lot out of an absolutely broken game. The game had barely any real mechanics, but the community managed to build a shitload of depth out of almost nothing. Stab feints were unarguably broken and unreadable, and yet people found ways to combat them despite of how broken they were. People started early parrying to get away with double parrying the punish, matrixing to give themselves a little bit more time to read it, doing microscopic footwork moves just to get 50 more milliseconds to read the feint. All that out of a game that was never intended to be competitive.

But now we have what was supposed to be Chivalry but better, and it's just less depthful. It was intended from the start to be a competitive game, and yet, the combat is less interesting. There's not much to discover or invent becaue the things that dominate the combat are the same things that we did in Chivalry.

The combat right now is balanced, it's fine, it's not broken. But it's not good. It's not anywhere near as depthful or fun as other competitive games. The combat system has potential to allow innovation and awesome looking plays, but we're stuck doing the same 3 things. That is why Rocket League succeded so much with such a dumb concept; It allowed so much freedom and variety of plays.

The parries in your video Frise look dodgy I agree but like Das said if those hits were to go through I wonder how they would look from the other perspective.

Well I can show you this. Were that hit to have gone through the parry, it would have made all the sense in the world imo. You can clearly see the guy moving to my flank and stabbing there. More complex sidehits like waterfalls or wessex might look worse, although to me they look fine, but I don't think they would need to be so extreme if the parrybox were stricter; We wouldn't need to go all the way inside the back to do a waterfall, just hit the shoulder. If extreme sidedrags become an issue, turncaps or release times can be adjusted. Sidedrags are extremely punishable anyway, you can force misses on them if you react quickly enough, and they are almost impossible to pull off if you run towards the attack; That's exactly the kind of counterplay that makes combat fun and interesting. That's depth.

Knight 928 2545
  • 24 Nov '18
 Pred

@das said:
People's complaints about side hits and attack manip looking weird is from the defender's POV, not the attacker's. Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't you say that no one in BR Mordhau did any waterfalls and wessexes and such back when they were really powerful in alpha and thus you didn't know what they looked like from the defender's side?

They looked broken because you could literally write your whole name in cursive over your opponent's head with a Halberd stab. There is a lot of middle ground between how it was back then and how it is now.

Also, with a 1h pokie-pokie you absolutely can hit around parries now with sprinting side to side while folded in half and looking at the ground for the confusion and unreadability points. Accomplishing the same via swing manipulation would just be healthier for the game, but now it only leads to wonky clanks like seen above.

It seems like the same problem in Chivalry, when a C-stab on Norse worked every time they parried to the wrong side, but on LS you would get more backparries than hits.

1154 1807

Sidestabs have never looked bad from defender or attacker. Sure it was cheesy from norse but norse was all cheese anyways. Rapier's annoying but it's far better balanced than Chiv's norse and there are stab chambers which needn't be so strict as parry.

Shoulder drags/waterfalls never looked bad in Chivalry and the ones that did were more hard delay foot drag than shoulder drag. Mordhau has stricter turn caps that don't allow such wonky shit as the absurd foot drags. But Mordhau has a massive parry which doesnt let you do any kind of shoulder drag even against shields. Any attempt to waterfall around this games massive parry box usually results in a miss for the attacker or parry/chamber for the defender and leaves you in an awkward spot either way.

I never delay dragged in Chivalry nor did I use reverses. I got by with side hits, matrixes, really good footwork and nasty feints in the appropriate setting. I mained longsword, zwei, GS, MS and flail for kicks. I'm pretty fucking good at Chivalry. Excited about Mordhau cause that meant 240 angles of attacks to side hit on riposte instead of 3 and there would be no more reverses/slow motion swords. I was fucking wrong about slow motion swords and 240 angles to side hit.

Now I have no choice but to slowmotion drag and spaz like an autist to land hits in this game and it gives me no satisfaction whatsoever.

Conscript 191 477
  • 24 Nov '18
 Shovonem

@Frise said:

Tell me which one of these sidestab attempts looks bad. Or at least tell me which one looks worse than the regular accel/delay/feint headbutting.

Take a look especially at the one where I'm doing a 1v2, switch from Humble to Vanguard, to then morph and sidestab Vanguard (and then fail because that build was bullshit). That is the sort of play that makes combat depthful, that attracts new players, and that keeps the game fun after 10.000 hours.

If, hipothetically, parryboxes were stricter and people started jiggling their stabs around retardedly, this could be addressed. For example, just give stabs a bit less turncap but more release, so that reaching around is still possible, but you have to commit to it more.

I am not a big fan spastic side hits and leg hits especially because it makes 1 v X even harder but your video does show something interesting.. Those stabs were obvious hits from the side. Spastic gameplay should not be allowed but I agree that side hits need some work. I don't think the game should revolve around side hits but it will give some more skill ceiling to it. Surprisingly people get hit from top with look up overhead drags a lot more. I don't know why that's still a thing and yet side hits are overlooked.

Duke 2266 4009
  • 24 Nov '18
 Huggles

@Stouty said:
The game's in its best state yet and immediately you guys want to break it again with unparriable footstabs

More creativity and variety in combat can only be a good thing.

Not at all, you're assuming that anything new is always an improvement,

No, I said more creativity and variety is good. You quoted me I think.

Nobody get hits through their parry and thinks to themselves "wow how engaging".

Your language here is very telling. A side stab by definition does not go through the parry. It goes to the side of the parry.

Successfully parrying a normal attack should be the simplest action a player can make to allow the true skill of the genre to shine: reading, footwork, swing manipulation

Footwork and positioning is a huge thing for preventing side hits. Performing a side hit by definition requires swing manipulation. The addition of another aspect of combat makes the timing requirement more rewarding because of the added pressures and factors that go alongside it, they don't diminish its importance at all.

I don't think side hits are nearly as frustrating as dying to a feint. When you get hit by a side stab, the fuck up is instant and the punishment is instant. When you are hit due to parrying too early, the fuck up is instant but the punishment is delayed and inevitable. The lack of instant feedback makes it extremely frustrating, especially when you know it's coming.

HUE i steb ur foot u take free damage xDDD)

I don't think foothits should be a thing unless the person is looking at the sky. I also don't think directional play should or really could be the defining aspect of combat. I think it just adds a little more variety that is pretty damn intuitive and imo actually results in more aesthetic fights and camera movement on the part of the player.

988 6971
  • 25 Nov '18
 marox — Project Lead

@Frise said:
Yes, fixing instant accels makes feints and drags less powerful. The way to bring the skill ceiling up again though is to make other techniques more viable, so that you can't just spam the same 3 moves every fight and be competitive.

Now that defense is easier timing-wise, it's the perfect time to try out a stricter parrybox so as to make directional plays viable. This way defense gets harder and offense requires variety and skill to be optimal. The way it was before, offense had an abismally low skill ceiling and fights were extremely repetitive.

Offense should require skill to perform properly; It shouldn't just be effective because of bullshit animations.

I agree with you that offense should be a lot more free and enabling, and have more creativity to it than what is there right now. As someone who is guilty of enjoying feint-free duels in Chivalry, this was one of the things I was hoping we could accomplish better with Slasher and then Mordhau. We've tried a lot of things, and buried a lot of attempts. Unfortunately in the current situation, this is not something that can be accomplished with simple number tweaks, at least not to the extent I'd be satisfied with. It requires thinking a bit outside of the box, and finding just what exactly would allow us to get to that point without distorting reality too much.

I am adamant in the belief that the answer is not in more buttons and more attacks, but in the simplicity of mouse manipulation that, somehow, isn't absurd-looking. There's a certain beauty in the analogue manipulation of the mouse that just isn't capturable by discrete key sequences alone. There's a lot of things to explore with the type of animation-centric gameplay that this genre has to offer, and we've been pulling back on most of it and sort of 'tuning in' into a subset that we want to explore further. Part of this also has to do that we have to spend time working on other parts of the game, and get everything finished. Even though melee is a huge part of this game, without an audience, it will be dead in the water, and we need to balance both aspects of development to make this a thing we can build upon in the future.

In short, we have an idea of where we want to be, and we've sorted out a lot of the kinks surrounding that area, but there's still lots of little alleyways left to explore. With the accel fix, we've begun to dabble in an area we previously left untouched and that is the temporal dimension of attacks outside of the animation clip itself, and a lot of interesting things could come from experimenting in that domain. We're learning and adapting as we go, and just because we've pruned the combat down and removed things we felt did not add to it to the extent we've wanted them to, does not mean we won't explore new routes that open up as a result.

Knight 1269 3807
  • 25 Nov '18
 Frise

Glad to hear you intend to extend on the swing manipulation aspect of combat. I think something that could help with making direction plays viable without making 1vX insufferable would be to the parry box correspond to its animation's side, meaning that if you parry while looking to the left, you get a parrybox that still covers your middle, but extends a bit further to your left side, and the same with the right side. The idea is that you don't need to look to far to a side to parry a hit coming from there, which would make parrying in 1vX less stressful; You see a guy on your right, you parry to your right and you'll likely be safe; However if someone is in front of you, they can still redirect the attack to your vulnerable side. I think it's a concept worth exploring.

There was a patch when we had dynamic feint recovery, and you could morph an attack, feint right after, and instantly throw another attack from another direction; This allowed, for example, a quick right slash feint into a left slash. They weren't very effective as timing feints, but there is potential in that mechanic to add a direction aspect to offense.

Obviously this is quite a reach but strike-intro-strike morphs would be useful for direction baits if the parry box was stricter, and they would look quite cool I think.

Your comment genuinely has given me relief, because I was worried about the direction the combat is going. Love this dev team.

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  • 2
  • 25 Nov '18
 crushed — Art

Dynamic feints is an idea we might explore again, but this time in a more consistent way of having only 2 states which would not affect feint punish of normal feints, streamlined across weapons. This would bring back things like chamber baits, and streamline feint to chamber across all weapons making it more consistent to do, rather than only some weapons being able to do it well.

This could also have other attributes, like costing -5 stamina instead of the regular 10, so very early chamber feints would be free since they cost 5 stamina which would allow players to chamber feint defensively at 15 stamina cost instead of 20

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  • 2
  • 25 Nov '18
 EatAtRedLobster

It would also be interesting to see if at some point in the future an "Interactive Parry" could be experimented with to create an additional layer of depth.

For instance tapping parry could work as it does now, but clicking and holding the parry button at the moment of contact could allow the defender to perform a mouse based directional deflection. The attacker could counter and cancel the deflection by hitting his parry button as well and moving his mouse (weapon) in the opposite direction. As to what the animations would look like during this exchange, or what advantage a successful "deflection" would grant the defender I do not know. Perhaps a stamina drain on the attacker if it succeeds, or a loss of initiative due to a lockout for the defender if it fails.

Some form of "Interactive Parry" for deflections has been in the back of my mind for some time, but I'm only bringing it up now due to marox's comments above regarding creativity in combat based on mouse manipulation. Whether a mechanic similar to my idea would actually work well or fit into the current combat system is unclear, but it would still be interesting to see something like this experimented with.

Conscript 191 477
  • 25 Nov '18
 Shovonem

Tbh slash into alt slash, overhead into alt overhead etc morph would be pretty cool. Especially with actual animation like normal morphs.

Duchess 789 3478
99 313
  • 6 Dec '18
 chaquator

Tb (to beh onest )( honest) h instants have been a lot more readable and theyre pretty okay in that clip

1154 1807

Im not sure if it started this patch but I've noticed a hell of alot more spinning. Spinning to conceal an attack, spinning to first frame hit, spinning to look like a first frame hit then subtly turn into a drag, spinning while starting an attack then morphing when your back is turned so they can't see what's actually coming.

Another spin tactic is crouching when an opponent starts an attack, inputting the chamber and turning then pivoting so the chamber is a first frame hit if the attacker misses, feints, drags too hard or even morphs he'll automatically take the hit. If the opponent doesn't miss then he eats the chamber and has to read an accelerated first frame chamber for morphs, feints or drags. Dragging can beat this to a certain degree but it's risky and often times too late to decide to drag by the time you see them crouching, leaning back and inputting their chamber.

Wish I had film but I'm sure you all know what I am talking about.

1154 1807

Also, I've never noticed this before but underhand slashes have become absolutely obnoxious this patch. Impossible to see coming and alot of players who use binds capitalize on this by using them while contorting their body to mask the windup until release, where they then turn to put their attack inside you.

This is the new insta-hit tactic and ofcourse, once introduced during a duel they can then morph/feint from these last-second-reveal attacks.

It's quite an underhanded strategy ;)

301 875
  • 6 Dec '18
 Naleaus

@Lionheart Chevalier said:
Im not sure if it started this patch but I've noticed a hell of alot more spinning. Spinning to conceal an attack, spinning to first frame hit, spinning to look like a first frame hit then subtly turn into a drag, spinning while starting an attack then morphing when your back is turned so they can't see what's actually coming.

Another spin tactic is crouching when an opponent starts an attack, inputting the chamber and turning then pivoting so the chamber is a first frame hit if the attacker misses, feints, drags too hard or even morphs he'll automatically take the hit. If the opponent doesn't miss then he eats the chamber and has to read an accelerated first frame chamber for morphs, feints or drags. Dragging can beat this to a certain degree but it's risky and often times too late to decide to drag by the time you see them crouching, leaning back and inputting their chamber.

Wish I had film but I'm sure you all know what I am talking about.

Oh hey this sounds like me. I'm just bored while doing this stuff, there are effective parts, but it's really punishable. I've been doing this stuff for awhile now though, nothing new.

12 75
  • 6 Dec '18
 TheFrog

@Lionheart Chevalier said:
Also, I've never noticed this before but underhand slashes have become absolutely obnoxious this patch. Impossible to see coming and alot of players who use binds capitalize on this by using them while contorting their body to mask the windup until release, where they then turn to put their attack inside you.

This is the new insta-hit tactic and ofcourse, once introduced during a duel they can then morph/feint from these last-second-reveal attacks.

It's quite an underhanded strategy ;)

Ribbit.

Duchess 789 3478
  • 6 Dec '18
 Stouty

@chaquator said:
Tb (to beh onest )( honest) h instants have been a lot more readable and theyre pretty okay in that clip

Feel free to try and read me doing these attacks on you, whenever you're available

Knight 1269 3807
  • 6 Dec '18
 Frise

@Stouty feel free to stop being a nerd hahahah ownd

1154 1807

I didn't name players because I didn't want any one to feel attacked for their strategies... Afterall this game is forcing the meta to be morphing/feinting or accel/decel and I'm not at all surprised people try their hardest to find new options though such deviations look rather ugly.

Yes, Nal, the second part of my first post was about something you use alot and yes Frog, my underhand post is about you and Herb's reliance on underhands but these are tactics I'm seeing alot of people starting to experiment with. Good or bad I'm simply letting everyone know that these are becoming a thing. Though, I do think the underhands specifically need to be more readable in general.

Another annoying thing I forgot to mention along with spins and invisible underhands are jumps. Jump overhead drags, jump stabs, jump underhand accels, jump morphs, etc. I'm all for making parry smaller to encourage more directional play... but jump slashes/stabs often go through my center-screen-parry despite reading and responding to their attack... You can argue that this is punished by stamina but that's only if you parry successfully and I'm not sure why I fail to parry when its in the center of my screen...maybe it's my ping? Also players who use this often have the acrobat perk. Another is jumping while starting an accel attack then morphing offscreen so they don't see it coming.

I suppose you can call all of this "emergent gameplay," where players invent new unforeseen tactics much like the reverses in Chivalry.


I think this game tries too hard to force a specific style revolving around morph/feint or accel/decel and I consider these emerging tactics to simply be attempts to break up the monotony of the current (and boring) meta. Maybe these specific tactics need to be nerfed or balanced whatever but I think the game really needs to explore new options instead of continuing to force the current meta.

As Nal himself pointed out, he trains and rehearses those weird maneuvers out of boredom.

In all honesty I think a slightly tighter left/right parry and shorter lunge would be solutions but maybe people on this thread have other suggestions..?