I think the health regain system could use an update for DW. There’s just too much downtime and running around, with less time doing the actual fun stuff (fighting in prolonged melee combat) than the original Chiv. Faster combat and lower time-to-kill (guns, combo speed increases, projectile defenseless classes) means everyone is dying quickly and running back from spawn at the start of the map. Personally, it seems like 90% of the time is spent traveling/regening/doing boring stuff, 10% actually swinging/blocking and engaged in combat.
Since War of the Vikings is now commercially available (early access), we’re free to talk about it. I’m a huge fan of the mechanics they’ve implemented to minimize downtime wherever they can, particularly their 6 second manual bandage. It does wonders for keeping the action constant. Players support each other and tend to stick together, with both teams forming clear frontlines. Players skirmish back and forth to fight/harass or heal/revive - this happens naturally in pubs without organization. If DW is 90% running/boring shit and 10% actual combat, I’d say WotV is a good 60% fighting (or at least time spent in a very close vicinity to the frontlines/an opponent), 40% healing/traveling/downtime.
Let’s compare a few scenarios:
- Get hit by a random projectile, or get clipped by friendly swings.
DW: If you didn’t get gibbed outright by guns, you can either back off to hide, then regen while walking back, which usually takes anywhere from 20s to 1m to get back in combat. Or attempt suicide charge and die from the first melee hit you take.
WotV: Break LOS (run behind a nearby pillar, or a friendly shield), or just back away from the frontlines a bit, 6 second bandage, immediately back in the fight with full HP.
- Some players get hurt in a team fight. Frontlines travel to meet each other for next fight.
DW: Some players run off to heal in safety, or start walking while regenning causing them to lag behind. Other players sprint off towards combat, splitting the team because healing/walking takes too long. Map usually looks like a stream of respawning players with pockets of quickly finished, sporadic combat.
More organized teams may walk/camp with the weak players, slowing down the rate of contact between teams even more.
WotV: 6 second manual bandage and fast travel mode means everyone can stick together, and recovering players are rarely far from action. Usually it’s two hordes engaged in a big chunk of combat close by, accessible in seconds.
- Actual mass teams fights.
DW: Both sides charge each other, then you see who can get the most damage in/backstab better before dying. Once one side is down a couple players, they get gangbanged from multiple angles. Fights usually end in under 20s. Defeated side respawns back from their side of the map - repeat. Wounded players rarely back off from melee, it’s more effective to just try to backstab/kill as quickly as you can, so there’s almost never any prolonged back-and-forth action or skirmishing.
WotV: Damaged players can manually heal anywhere back to full hp in 6s. If you get hurt you can try to back off further from the front lines to heal while your teammates protect you. Covering each other and skirmishing (dealing damage, backing off to recover) is effective and important. There’s more prolonged frontline contact, the combat is always nearby.
- Harass tactics and flanking.
DW: Flanking, harassing large groups with one or two players, assassinating shooters/campers in the back lines is extremely risky. You get hit by a single projectile and your mission is over from being too worn down - go run away or camp a rock for 30 seconds. People will just sprint down loners and surround/backstab them. You have to be very skilled, and it’s almost always an all-in suicide mission once you decide to engage, due to the chase mechanic and glacial HP regen.
WotV: Flankers and lone assassins can be very effective at getting into position, surrounding groups and shifting attention. You can dart in and out of cover to reach their back lines - a stray shot won’t end your mission since you can manually heal. If you surprise someone or get into a 1v1 fight in their backlines before too many people notice, you can quickly kill someone, heal, and win a string of fights.
Harassing large zergs by doing some damage, backing away/healing, then returning is a viable tactic for skilled players.
Granted, WotV has several other mechanics that cut out downtime (travel mode, spawning on teammates near combat, tackling runners, revives), but the manual bandage plays the biggest role.
Here are a few options that could be experimented with for DW:
Increase health gain per tick of regen
6x hp per tick. Since regen takes a long time to kick in, with it being disabled by everything except walking, and the existence of a chase mechanic, laming out fights was never really an option. This is the most simple and effective way to cut out the downtime for out-of-combat players. It’s also arguable that having less restrictions to activate regen could be a great thing given the quicker combat here - you get longer prolonged combat in team fights, with people skirmishing in and out of the frontlines to recover, with more strategy involving protecting your own players while attempting to finish off theirs.
You are rooted in place while channeling a lengthy (~6-10s) animation, interruptible by other players. Upon completion you receive full HP.
**Standing taunt recovers HP
Standing taunt recovers a chunk of HP (15%-20%) at the end of the animation. Interruptible by other players. Used to supplement existing HP regen.
So what improvements would you like to see to the heatlh regain system, if any? Is the slow, restrictive regen (doesn’t kick in for a while, and you can’t perform any actions except walk) from the original Chiv really sufficient for a faster paced game like DW?**