Mordhau

Shield Rebalance

7 15
 MedLit

I'd like to bring to everyone's attention a prevalent issue people have had with shields and one particular strategy that has been exploited to no end. As someone who has played hundreds of hours in Chivalry, dozens of hours in Mordhau, and also someone who has heard several complaints, I've decided to create a post here to better direct the debate to a medium that developers will more likely notice.

I've read parts of the forums and saw that other people have proposed a solution similar to the one I had in mind, though with mechanics that seem arbitrary and miss the point. The issue is that players use one strategy for shields, and that is to block and then counter-attack. Myself and others included once believed that kicking is the answer, but the enemy can backpedal away from your kicks for the entire duration of the fight and attack when you are vulnerable. Furthermore, I will now elaborate on what my actual suggestion is. Below I will list possible solutions that are each intended to be separate. If someone other than me provided the idea, I will label the idea with their username.

Stamina Drain

The shield user's stamina is left untouched as they hold up their shield for prolonged amounts of time. Because the man can hold up his shield for so long without punishment, they can continue to backpedal and counter-attack all advances if they're at least somewhat competent. The weapons that can be combined with the shield such as a short spear or rapier enhance this behavior, as they can further space you out and be as irritating as possible to chase and successfully attack.

After a couple seconds, drain their stamina. If the man persists to hold up his shield and ignores their draining stamina, they will eventually deplete it. When stamina is depleted upon their shield being struck, the shield is knocked out of their hands. If stamina is depleted and they are not blocking an attack, force them to lower their guards for long enough to be punished.

Longer Kick Lunge
Another solution for dealing with cowardly shield users would be that the mechanic designed to counter them be better. If someone is backpedaling, make the kick cover just enough ground to usually reach them. This way they are forced to lower their shield to avoid the kick's long stun, and potentially fight back more.

Slower Backpedaling (Budzilla)
If you are holding up a shield and walking backward, your speed will be reduced.

My voice alone is not enough to make this a reality. I invite everyone in the community to share their experiences with shields and to debate.

1 0
 Budzilla

"Myself and others included once believed that kicking is the answer, but the enemy can backpedal away from your kicks for the entire duration of the fight and attack when you are vulnerable"

So you admit the real issue is the speed of backpedal. Would the real solution not be to decrease the backpedal speed or speed in general with a shield, rather than just making shields completely useless or introducing a kick meta?

7 15
  • 7 May
 MedLit

@Budzilla said:
"Myself and others included once believed that kicking is the answer, but the enemy can backpedal away from your kicks for the entire duration of the fight and attack when you are vulnerable"

So you admit the real issue is the speed of backpedal. Would the real solution not be to decrease the backpedal speed or speed in general with a shield, rather than just making shields completely useless or introducing a kick meta?

That could be the problem. Walking backward with a shield could make you slower than it currently is. I will edit the post. Thank you for your contribution.

1 1

Yeah I also agree.We should have more counter to shield.The kick range is too short and shield and rapier combo almost give that kick no chance due to stab spam.People said you could try to run around it but if that shield user have some brain and kick or simply stab spam then it would be really hard to pull it off.

Yes it is possible to drain stemina off the shield user but for the most weapon it take like 10 to 15 strikes to do so.But the shield user don't have to worry about parry or morp and most of the time it result in victory of shield user.Currently 70% of shild user dont use morp or attack cancel because they have cheesy victory.But when they do know how to use it people will understand.

Currently stamina regen is quite fast like what? 5 secound out of combat.How about making shield user take more time to regen stamina like 15 seconds outside combat.Which give attacker advantage in long run stemina drain fight.

OR

Increase the amount of stemina drain per hit.So tell the shield user that ok you can get 5-6 guarantee block but after that you will have to manage your stemina wisely or risk losing your shild and left with one hand weapon.

Realisticly the figther should be able to grab or pull shield.But the game did not have such mechanic yet.

53 8
  • 8 May
 janat08

there's a guide in Russian for dealing with shields, it's very demonstrative. The gist of it is that if guy traded away 2h weapon for a shield, u use your noble 2h weapon to overhead strike aiming way from him, and when the weapon is level with his body you turn it into him, thus you hit him with the tip of weapon that is behind the shield.

1340 1401

The ideas are bad and won't solve any problem.

Knight 34 30
  • 8 May
 Oatmate

@SWSeriousMike said:
The ideas are bad and won't solve any problem.

I disagree

62 29
  • 8 May
 Mechanicus

@SWSeriousMike said:
The ideas are bad and won't solve any problem.

I agree

1340 1401

@Oatmate said:

@SWSeriousMike said:
The ideas are bad and won't solve any problem.

I disagree

I disagree.

7 15
  • 10 May
 MedLit

@SWSeriousMike said:
The ideas are bad and won't solve any problem.

Could you please elaborate as to why? You could at least try to be more constructive. I get it that you may disagree with all of them, but at least pick one or all to dismantle instead of being so blunt. I personally feel that your stamina being drained because you refuse to lower your shield after a prolonged amount of time is reasonable and not terrible. You could start by attempting to persuade me as to why you disagree with that.

41 55
  • 10 May
 cain

I don't know why people are disagreeing, these ideas seem perfectly fine to me as a good balance for shields. Perhaps not all at once, but certainly either one or two of them together would be ideal.

Personally I'd go for stamina drain when holding a shield up (perhaps it grows exponentially so holding a shield for a few seconds is fine but holding one for more than, say 5 or 6, and your stamina starts draining faster) and slower movement speed - especially backpedaling - when shielded.

Think about it logically: If you're holding a shield out in front of you, what you're essentially doing is holding up a weight. Shields are heavy - especially the bigger ones. Right now, go and find something fairly hefty and hold it up with one hand. Now keep holding it up, and imagine somebody is smacking into that thing you're holding while you try to hold it up. Won't be long before the process becomes tiresome.

Additionally, I feel like shield hitboxes (or "block" boxes rather) seem to be way too big. If I'm firing an arrow or thrusting a sword at somebody who is side-on to me, then that shouldn't be blocked just because they have a shield in front of them. Shields should protect the area immediately in front of the shield, not the areas out to the sides.

So many people say "just go around the shield!" as a way to counter them. But in my experience, you basically need to be directly behind somebody in order for you to "go around" the shield hitbox.

1064 1698

Haha

Puny shield man you now have weak hands

oog boog

me now have bigger kick

big kick! big kick!

shield man die now :)

1340 1401

@MedLit said:
Could you please elaborate as to why? You could at least try to be more constructive. I get it that you may disagree with all of them, but at least pick one or all to dismantle instead of being so blunt. I personally feel that your stamina being drained because you refuse to lower your shield after a prolonged amount of time is reasonable and not terrible. You could start by attempting to persuade me as to why you disagree with that.

It's already possible to outstam shield users. They are mostly annoying in team fights. All attrition-based ideas solve problems that don't exist and don't address the real problems.
But tomorrow someone will post the same ideas again and again. The answers have already been provided dozens of times in this forum.

41 55
  • 10 May
 cain

@SWSeriousMike said:

@MedLit said:
Could you please elaborate as to why? You could at least try to be more constructive. I get it that you may disagree with all of them, but at least pick one or all to dismantle instead of being so blunt. I personally feel that your stamina being drained because you refuse to lower your shield after a prolonged amount of time is reasonable and not terrible. You could start by attempting to persuade me as to why you disagree with that.

It's already possible to outstam shield users. They are mostly annoying in team fights. All attrition-based ideas solve problems that don't exist and don't address the real problems.
But tomorrow someone will post the same ideas again and again. The answers have already been provided dozens of times in this forum.

Shields may not necessarily be "broken" from a gameplay standpoint, but they're very obviously a point of major contention among the community. Purely looking at stats and tactics? Sure, they're probably "fine" when you get right down to the numbers. But there's a big difference between what's fine on paper and what's enjoyable to play with and against.

Currently? Shields are not fun. They're not fun to play against and, in my opinion at least, they're not much fun to play with either because they feel far too easy. Parrying with a weapon and following up with a counter attack or a chamber feels super satisfying, as does fighting against an opponent who does the same. But fighting against a shield is just a matter of constantly wailing on them over and over until you outstam them, while playing with one is a whole lot of holding the block button up and getting really acquainted with the texture on the back of the shield while occasionally taking a cheeky poke at the enemy.

In addition, the kick mechanic feels very... "Clunky". Personally I've never gotten it to work outside of a fist fight as enemies with shields just back away as soon as they see me winding up for a kick (or more often, stab me in the chest) and the only way I find that really works against shield-turtles is to either go ham on them until they drop their shield or make a wrong move, or just avoid them until I can get in around behind them. Neither of these feels very fun or satisfying vs going up against another enemy in a fight with chambering and weapon parries.

Shields might be "balanced". But they're boring, annoying and unpleasant to deal with in their current incarnation and that is a problem. One that will keep getting bought up until something gets changed.

172 85
  • 10 May
 Mackintoke

I've never once had an issue fighting off shield guys. Shield guys can't use really long weapons like pole hammer which does them in good.

162 124

If you buff kicks, everyone would spam kicks during fights because of the long range, i prefer a swing manipulation buff or a new mechanic for and against shields

777 1029

@SWSeriousMike said:

@Oatmate said:

@SWSeriousMike said:
The ideas are bad and won't solve any problem.

I disagree

I disagree.

I'll agree

109 165
  • 10 May
 Speak

@janat08 said:
there's a guide in Russian for dealing with shields, it's very demonstrative. The gist of it is that if guy traded away 2h weapon for a shield, u use your noble 2h weapon to overhead strike aiming way from him, and when the weapon is level with his body you turn it into him, thus you hit him with the tip of weapon that is behind the shield.

If that kind of thing works (and it sounds similar to a kind of stab dragging that I heard worked against shields too) then that's janky / counter-intuitive as shit. Glitch-level mechanics. Dragging your weapon through someone's active block should not work. (Even if it's a counter to shields. It's not good design.)

162 124

@Speak said:

@janat08 said:
there's a guide in Russian for dealing with shields, it's very demonstrative. The gist of it is that if guy traded away 2h weapon for a shield, u use your noble 2h weapon to overhead strike aiming way from him, and when the weapon is level with his body you turn it into him, thus you hit him with the tip of weapon that is behind the shield.

If that kind of thing works (and it sounds similar to a kind of stab dragging that I heard worked against shields too) then that's janky / counter-intuitive as shit. Glitch-level mechanics. Dragging your weapon through someone's active block should not work. (Even if it's a counter to shields. It's not good design.)

Its not dragging through the block, its going around it (it hits their blind spot or sides that shield users cant see)

162 124

But this swing manipulation is still hard to pull off, especially against a pro shield because you have to be really close to perform it