Thursday, April 4, 2013

Settle the Score - Version 11

Earlier last month we announced we were working on "Settle the Score" - the Version 11 update (a.k.a update 1.11). We've been a bit coy about the fine details on this update, mostly because there were a few things still being finalised for release. We know everyone's been waiting in anticipation for more info so today we're going to show you some of the things that are absolutely pinned down and ready to go!

To start - there's a whole new Scoring System and two new weapons – the LMG and a shiny new secondary weapon. There’s plenty more going into this update, but here's the scoop of what's been finalized so far to get your appetite started.

New Weapons

This is the Nekrova Squad Support Weapon, a brand new LMG. It’s Nekrova’s first entry into the field of Light Machine Guns and it’s a hybrid of the ALIG 762, SHAW 556, and the N-TEC. Less damage than the ALIG and a slower rate of fire than the SHAW, but a much faster setup time. Other LMG’s suppress from a stationary position and are really effective, but this weapon’s more about mobility – it’s an LMG you can sprint with to get into position quickly before setting up and pouring the pain on your enemies.

The Flare Gun has been a concept that we've been throwing around for a while now. It’s a secondary weapon that we think every team is going to want one of, and it's going to be a total game changer during missions! It carries four shots at the moment, but these bullets aren't like anything else in the game – they bounce and explode causing very light damage (don't worry, it’s less damage than a perc.)

The real beauty of this weapon is that the flare tags every enemy in line of sight of the explosion on your radar and HUD. It’s an AOE tagger and can change the flow of any match by highlighting your enemies for the rest of your team. It’s the ideal support weapon and a must have for San Paro's elite groups.

New Scoring System

(Edited Section on 4/5/13.)

Ever since the start of APB Reloaded’s development, we've wanted to make player performance more of a factor in how you get matched up. One of our earliest tasks in the bug database (the 19th task that was brought into the database, in fact) was to simplify the scoring system and expose what it did to the player.

Version 11, introduces a whole new version of the score mechanic – everything you do while on Mission will count towards your score and your score will count towards your Threat. As you can guess, this feature inspired the name for the update - "Settle the Score."

Here’s the current system (this is a really, really simplified version):
You ready up, you get into a match and you win the match. Your threat goes up a little bit. If you lose your threat level goes down.

This is an ‘okay’ system. It works fine, but it leaves a lot to be desired in terms of edge cases. What if you lose because someone called for back-up with a minute left on the clock? What if you stomp on the other team but lose at the last second? What if the other guy on your team does really badly? And why should that guy get to be gold if they're getting carried there?

While some of those edge cases are covered (players called into a mission late only receive a fraction of the penalty) we can do better. These are the sorts of edge cases that we really want to address with the new system.

From Version 11 onward, when you kill an enemy player you get 100 score. Objective completion scores vary depending on the task. When you're near an objective getting completed you get 75 score for providing cover to your team mates. You get more score for kill streaks, blitzkriegs, arrests, stuns, freeing teammates, and vehicular kills. You get a major chunk of score for winning a match and a lot of score even if you lose.

At the end of each Mission the system will rank everyone according to their Score (people that win matches get a bonus to their score that averages around the same amount of Score as about five kills). The Threat system looks at everyone’s score and then ranks them against each other as if it were a free-for-all match. While it’s likely that the team that won will have the most score, it’s not always the case. We've seen occasions on OTW where the losing side had higher individual scores but these were when matches were incredibly close calls.

If you're below a certain threshold in score events or participation then your score and rewards are nulled. If you AFK through a Mission you gain zero cash, zero standing and zero threat. If you join a Mission very late but don’t have time to interact with anything (even things that don't score itself, like damaging other players), you won't gain or lose any threat at the end of the Mission.

Score also factors into your rewards after a Mission. If you play really hard, then you get a bigger cash reward – in fact, you get a percentage of your score as a cash reward up to a Mission-determined maximum. Getting a significant amount of score in one match compared to everyone else won't move your threat any more than a very close win but it will give you a significant amount of cash as a bonus.

So there you have it folks - the first round of feature and content details on "Settle the Score" Version 11 update! Don't forget to stay tuned for an upcoming post where our Community Team will share some cool APB Reloaded statistics we’ve gathered, and chat about the process of how community feedback gets filtered through to Development.

In the meantime, here’s a picture of the new Joker contact. Enjoy!

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