Idea: automatic weapon balancing

I was thinking of a way to automatically balance weapons (both existing ones and upcoming ones). Currently, the game keeps track of weapon popularity (usage), and awards a score boost to unpopular weapons. What if unpopular weapons also received a damage boost? After a period of initial oscillation, I think the whole system would eventually reach a balance point where all weapons would be equally popular, and dealt roughly the same amount of damage.

Can anyone think of a reason why this would not work?

Note that this does not replace, but rather complements work done by @1galbatorix1, which addresses other problems not necessarily related to damage-per-second.

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Well,I don’t exactly know what to think of this,but if you’ll do this,just don’t make the damage multiplier the same as the score multiplier. It needs to be a lot higher in order to make a difference.

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I can’t point why, but something tells me this will not work very well.

Because the problem isn’t just the damage or the popularity (even though that Utensil Poker is the most popular due to its damage), but the design.

A simple damage adjustment just won’t work, even if buffing into op it won’t solve the problem.

Btw, when will you implement Galbatorix’s suggestion?

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If damage balancing is added, I think all enemies should have strengths/weaknesses against particular weapons increased than currently, for example:

  • Some weapons could deal up to 2x or 3x damage against certain enemies/bosses compared to other weapons.

  • Some weapons could deal only 50% damage to certain enemies/bosses compared to other weapons.

  • Some enemies or objects are “neutral”, that means all weapons deal the same damage to it.

I don’t think that works. I really don’t. It would if you could switch weapons at will,but you can’t,and you can’t just predict which enemies will appear in the next wave,so you’re basically just praying that you’ll get good RNG either with the enemies or with weapon drops.
Edit: oh,you mean that the values would just be increased/decreased? Well,that won’t do much to weapons aside from corn.
If we were able to switch between at least like 2 or 3 weapons,I’d totally be with you. But until that becomes a thing,I’m against it.

:+1::+1:
i think that should work with that one…but should be enough damage to make you use that weapon!!!

How frequent would this be? I feel like it’d have to occur pretty frequently (ſay, daily) to have a faſt enough effect.
Alſo, Moron Railgun ſhould be exempt.

Actuälly, wouldn’t it be poſſible to make an artificial evolution create new weapons baſed off of old ones and have ſeverely underuſed weapons die out? I mean, it’s probably not worth the effort, but it would be cool.

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I don’t think such a system should be considered until all weapons are properly rebalanced, especially if you’re not absolutely certain that it will work out properly.

The way I see it, WBP is handling the whole balancing matter (DPS included) very well so far and would likely make this system more or less pointless.
If anything, implementing both of these changes would make it harder to draw conclusions about whether or not they’re actually working. Galbatorix’s changes are way more straightforward, and probably more than sufficient. In my opinion, if there’s still room for improvement after WBP is finished, potentially fine-tuned and implemented, only then we should consider a system such as this.

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Moſt of your poſt is a matter of opiniön, but I will point out this one thing:

In terms of required code/development time, I highly doubt that this is the caſe.

Alſo, this juſt occured to me:

Aſſuming there’s not ſome terrible bug in the code, what’s the worſt that can happen? Either the oſcillation never dies down, or the changes aren’t rapid enough.

Alſo,

It occurred to me that if it’s this frequent, than the players won’t have much time to diſcover the difference, ſo it ſhould be ſmoothed by only having ſmall changes on a daily baſis and/or ſending out notifications with the current ſtrengths/popularity.

I’ve had this exact idea ages ago, for a different game, but I also considered writing a post suggesting it for Chicken Invaders. The way I imagined it would work is:
– At the end of every day, the game makes a ranking of the most/least used weapons
– Then increases the damage of the least used weapon by 1% and decreases the damage of the most used weapon by 1%.
The ranking should be based on time spent in-game with the weapon equipped. You could sit still in a wave for hours to skew the ranking a bit, but I don’t think anyone would bother exploiting that.
Day-to-day, the difference would be very slight, but over time the continued modifications will stack and should eventually keep the balance in check. The changes would not come in a single sweep as it is the case with a manual overhaul, but give people plenty of time to adjust. The advantage I see here is that it will encourage a more uniform usage of the weapons instead of having Utensil at 50% and all of the bottom half with 2-3%. It should also make it so that even if you stick with just one weapon, you shouldn’t have so great an advantage or disadvantage.
If one weapon would be used very little by players for a long time, it could get buffed to a crazy amount for the select few players that equip it, but that would require the entire playerbase to organize themselves so that they refrain from using it, which I think is very unlikely.
While I have no clue how it will affect weapon balance and player behaviour in the long-term when implemented, I absolutely support this idea, even if merely as an experiment.

I would first consider WBP and then, if necessary, this new system.

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Because if it ends up being unbalanced,you won’t be able to tell if it’s because of “automatic weapon balancing” or because of Galbatorix’s weapon rebalancing program.

True, but they cover two different things: the automatic balancing only modifies the damage amounts until all the weapons are equally popular, thus making them graduälly leſs unbalanced, whereas the other is a more delicate balancing programme that factors in all ſorts of other things.

Alſo:

There’s not really any way for this automatic rebalancing programme to unbalance the weapons: the only way for that to happen would be for a large number of players to always uſe the weakeſt weapons, which would only happen if they had ſome redeeming features, which would effectively mean that they’re not really unbalanced.

:grin: ion blaster will be a lot better with this

Here it is, the boi himself is coming.

I think that this statement is very true, but on top of that, balancing weapons automatically may cause some serious problems. Populariity is not a good measure of quality and balance unless something is severely under/overpowered(Which is the case in CIU now). Such system would almost certainly break once the weapons get relatively balanced.

For example: weapon A is slightly stronger than weapon B but is much more difficult to use than B. A is less popular because of the difficulty. Then automatic damage boost makes weapon A even stronger thus making it objectively better than weapon B. So then A becomes more popular… (And so on, basically total mess)Nope, it’s not gonna work in any shape or form.

Once everything gets to the relative balance, dealing with weapons that are too strong, or too weak can be done by slightly buffing/nerfing said weapon. This is the balance tactic that is used in many games and it works really well.

And it should never be based on the popularity. Low popularity doesn’t always mean that something is underperforming. If you look at some other games like League of Legends for example, best meta characters are almost never the most popular, unless they are completely overpovered.

So yea, IMO this solution may potentially cause more harm than good. And definitelly will not solve all the problems that need to be solved.

Also,

I am happy that community likes my work, but please remember that it’s still only a suggestion, and it’s up to IA whether or not WBP becomes a thing.

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Why? The oſcillation will tend to die down after a bit, and once the weapons are pretty balanced, who cares?

Because popularity is not a measure of effectiveness. Such system would make things even worse, because it doesn’t take effectiveness into account, but the popularity.

image

In such scenario, corn shotgun would get bigger damage buff than Lightning Fryer despite the fact that even now Corn Shotgun is superior to Lightning Fryer in every situation except some really low difficulty missions. So as a result, Corn Shotgun would get even more powerful than Lightning Fryer. That’s not balance. That’s opposite of balance.

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Sure, we can’t know how an automatic and dynamic weapon balancing system will work in the real game until it’s added. How it is implemented also matters. But I’ve wanted for a long time to see such an idea in action just to find out what happens. I am thrilled that InterAction Studios suggested it themselves.

Changing the weapon stats manually can be slow. Games can be left with a broken meta for weeks, months, even forever. If we settle just for a classic rebalance, the most dedicated players will re-establish a new meta in a matter of days. Some other (or possibly even the same) weapons will emerge as the most effective, and the rest will be left in the dust. The overall distribution might change because of the large number of casuals, but even that will stabilize given enough time.

So what I’d like to see is an unstable situation. One that enforces changes continuously, but at a slow enough pace that you don’t have to relearn the game every day. It would give you an incentive to purchase all of the weapons available in the shop, rather than just the three or four that actually have a purpose. Convince people to have some variation.

When the rebalancing doesn’t happen abruptly, basing the changes on popularity should work. If somehow a weapon becomes OP due to the algorithm, people will start to take notice, even by accidentally picking it up and seeing how effective it is, driving up the number of its users and then the algorithm does the rest, reducing its damage. Whatever the issue, this system is capable of correcting itself.

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