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Active blocking

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The developers have yet to finalize designs for active blocking in Ashes of Creation.[1][2]

We're going to be discussing internally amongst the designers and the combat team and then we will likely share with the community once we've nailed down a few approaches and prototype them out.[1]Steven Sharif

  • The developers were previously leaning toward using more traditional buff-oriented universal damage mitigation for the MMO, and were also considering interaction between action-based blocking and a passive block stat.[2]

This is something we're still actively iterating on and actively going to be testing in our hybrid system but you know as we're as we're doing that we are taking into consideration. Obviously we want action based components to also interact in some way shape or form with the waterfall stat system as well; and you know that seems like it might be an oxymoron from an action to tab sense, but it doesn't have to be. There can be components of action- so say for instance you could have a dual component where you activate that shield stance and if you accurately intercept an incoming projectile or a skill that's been initiated from the forward arc, you get 80% damage mitigation or 80% application of the physical defense of the shield; and if it comes from an area outside of that forward arc then you get a lesser bonus; and that essentially what would happen is let's say you take into account the stat of the shield's physical defense value, you apply it as a mitigating factor to the incoming damage, but in addition you augment that system with the waterfall stat that is responsible for shield damage mitigation or shield rate; and maybe you know the default skill says 80% damage mitigation from forward arc but that gets augmented up to 87% because of your stat essentially; and if it's not in your forward arc then it gets you know 50% efficacy- maybe it's 40 something percent. So just to give you kind of insight into what goes into kind of determining these skills and how they interact on an action-based front.[2]Steven Sharif

In APOC when we had the active shield stance- that was an active shield block action-based system; and when we collected design data on essentially the efficacy and essentially the accuracy of players who used that wasn't very high; and there is a concern at least on the front of implementing a action restricted type active shield block as opposed to what would traditionally be along the lines of activating a buff that grants a shield block rate adjustment and is universal on incoming damage- and interfaces with the stats- is really something that we're leaning towards in incorporating for the hybrid combat system.[2]Steven Sharif

Combat revamp

Alpha-1 split-body melee weapon combat sneak peek.[4]

I can move while swinging on this guy. I can back up then continue to attack him. Just have complete control over my character while attacking.[4]Steven Sharif

A revamped combat system will be rolled out during and post Alpha-1 testing based on player feedback.[5][6][7]

  • The goal is to give more agency to the player and achieve a more fluid flow of combat with greater mobility when using abilities.[8][9]
  • The current hybrid tab and action combat system will remain after the revamp.[8]
  • This revamp will not represent the final form of combat, but will set the general direction that combat will be taking.[10]
  • The revamp will be iterative and will be rolled out to testers in different phases.[9]

The revamped combat system will feature split-body animations, where the character's upper body can be locked by weapon attack animations while the lower body is free to continue moving.[4][11][12]

You'll be able to move forward while swinging your weapon; and this will allow you complete control over your weapon attacks for melee.[4]Steven Sharif

Alpha-1 testing is initially focused on core functionality rather than combat balance.[12]

Q: Based on recent feedback, what direction are you leaning towards in regards to split-body versus root-motion?
A: We are leaning towards split body.[13]Steven Sharif

Combat targeting

Alpha-1 early hybrid combat demo.[14]

You'll notice as I go into action mode, I have my reticle and when my reticle hovers over an enemy target, it'll turn red, essentially showing like "hey we know you have a valid target hit" that you can see; and when you press 'Q' you can lock on to that target. You can also hold tab to alternate between targets. So like that's an important aspect of the combat that we're trying to incorporate, which is mixing and meshing between tab and action, so you still have that action component but also are available to use some of your tab targeted skills.[15]Steven Sharif

Hybrid combat refers to the choice between tab targeted and action targeted combat in the Ashes of Creation MMORPG.[15][16]

Q: Are you still considering whether the combined action/tab targeting combat will be replaced by either tab only or action only?
A: No, I think that we will find a healthy medium between the two. I think that really what it comes down to is the definition of action; and I think that there is a varying degree of opinions on what action targeting means so to speak. But as I've clearly defined in the past, and as you can research in on the Wiki, our opinion on- at least my opinion on- action combat is I think well represented in the way we want to hybridize that combat in Ashes of Creation; and I think that there is going to be a good balance between those two and it should be a seamless transition between the two as well. And you know we're going to be fleshing that out further as we move forward.[17]Steven Sharif
  • A toggle button (default Z, but can be re-bound to another key) allows the player to switch between action and tab targeted combat modes.[18][8][14][19]
  • The action mode utilizes a targeting reticle and is very close to a third-person action game.[15][14][19][20]
    • The player does not have to be in reticle mode to use an action combat ability.[21]
    If you use an action combat ability that's going to be directional focused, you do not have to be in reticle mode to use that. It will fire where that reticle would be. So if you play by feel and you're in tab target camera mode, you can still utilize your action-oriented skills and abilities.[21]Steven Sharif
    • The reticle will highlight/change color (to red) to indicate if the current target is able to be hit with the currently prepared skill.[15][14]
    • Action combat abilities will not have a lock-on feature but pressing Q while in action mode will lock on to the current target to enable the use of tab-oriented skills in action mode.[18][15]
    Action combat abilities will not have a lock-on feature so to speak. Some of those are going to be skill shot only. However because you can have a mix and match of tab abilities that require a target, you will be able to target lock in action mode as well. Right now that's delegated to the Q key as default, but you can obviously set that up you could put it on you know your left mouse button, or you could put it wherever you want; and when your reticle hovers over a target, it rapidly swaps your target ability and when you press your target lock it will then lock that target; and if you have tab-oriented skills, you can use your tab oriented skills and they will be used against that target.[18]Steven Sharif
    • Holding Tab while in action mode will alternate between targets.[15]
    • Pressing right-click while in action mode will switch to tab mode for the currently highlighted target.[14]
    • The action camera is tied to the to player's reticle. There will likely be a hotkey that when held down will allow free camera movement.[22]
    • In future the user will have the ability to choose from different reticle appearances.[23]
  • The tab mode (MMO mode) facilitates tab targeted combat.[14][19] A tab-targeted ability requires a target in order to utilize that skill.[18][20]
    • Pressing left-click in tab mode will attack the target (with the currently selected weapon).[14]
    • There will be a "target of target" capability on the user interface.[24]

Hybrid combat is being tested in Alpha-1.[15][25]

  • Targeting modes are able to be achieved through choice of skills/abilities.[18][25][26]
    • It may not be possible to be able to fully spec into just action or tab targeted skills. There might be a 75% cap on choosing skills from any one type.[26]
    • Different ranks of the same skill can change the skill from tab to action targeted or vice-versa.[27]

Skill progressions, skill point allocation is determined by the player. The player will be able to choose either more tab-target oriented skills or more action-based skills and customize their playable experience to what accommodates their preference. From a balancing standpoint for us developers, we need to make sure that certain abilities house certain functions so that there's a balance between skill shots and tab-target abilities.[26]Steven Sharif

Action oriented and tab oriented versions of skills will have different characteristics. Variables will change based on which version is chosen.[28]

  • Damage.[28]
  • Charge up time.[28]
  • CC effects.[28]
  • Cooldown.[29]
  • Energy consumption.[29]
  • Cost to spec.[29]
  • Attack range will likely remain the same; as it is driven by the weapon or skill itself.[30]

As an example: Let's say you're playing a ranged class. You could have an action-oriented power shot in your skill tree or you could have a single target power shot that ramps up and does more damage. [28]Steven Sharif

info-orange.pngSome of the following information has not been recently confirmed by the developers and may not be on the current development roadmap for Alpha-1.

For the purposes of balance, certain skill types will be either tab or action oriented skills. For example:[29]

  • Hard CCs may be housed in action oriented skills because they are skill shots that are more difficult to land.[29][26]
  • Softer CC's would be housed in tab-targeted abilities.[29]

Hitboxes

The developers are testing different approaches to accommodate varying hitboxes between the races.[31]

  • There may be a single unified hitbox with some exceptions or some special collision rules as opposed to having different sized hitboxes.[31]

More than likely we'll have some sort of unified or unified-ish hitbox. But again it's going to probably have a unified hitbox with some exceptions or some special sort of collision rules based on them as opposed to kind of just making it smaller for one and not the other.[31]Jeffrey Bard

There aren't separate types of hitbox categories in the Ashes of Creation MMORPG as there were in Ashes of Creation Apocalypse.[31]

We don't have separate types of hitbox categories, for example. There's no head hit box in the MMORPG like there was in APOC. So from a critical standpoint you're not going to see a greater risk of critting for a larger hitbox.[31]Steven Sharif

Directional attacks

There will be directional attacks (back attacks, flanking attacks, frontal attacks) that deal additional damage depending on the positional context of the attack.[32]

Cleaving

Weapon attack cone in Alpha-1.[14]

As I attack I am hitting multiple numbers of these opponents; and that's important because all weapons, regardless of whether you are in reticle mode or tab-targeting mode will be able to have a action-based type weapon attack. Not active skill, but weapon attack.[14]Steven Sharif

All weapons have a forward attack cone, regardless of being in tab or action mode.[14]

Polearms for example will have a much wider arc and much further out. Daggers will have a more fine-tuned arc, so you have to be more precise in that regard.[14]Steven Sharif

This is described as a weapon attack not an active skill.[14]

Mobility

Revamped Alpha-1 Mage Fireball ability.[9][7]

The general approach that we're kind of taking based on a lot of feedback and just good combat design in general. You know philosophy is that we want to give more agency in the hands of the player and the antithesis of that is locking the player down for really long amounts of time. The sort of concept behind that is like you could make an animation effects as glorious looking as possible but if it's taking away control of the player, none of that really matters. Especially the 100th or thousandth time you're using the spell you're tired of that happening you don't feel powerful: You feel the opposite of powerful. So we're trying to like give a lot of control back to the player while they're using these abilities so they can still control their movements, they can react simultaneously while they're taking actions; and we just want to get overall more of a fluid flow, I guess, of combat. And that's kind of the general design philosophy we're using to approach the overhaul.[9]Tradd Thompson

Skills with the greatest power may require the caster to remain stationary while channeling them. This is a risk vs. reward mechanic.[34][35]

  • Prone and crouch will likely not be in the game.[36]
  • Moving backward will likely not affect block and parry.[37]

I think that that generally we want to tend to be more mobile in our classes. I think that it's a fundamentally old-school philosophy to have a lot of stuck in place type skills. That isn't to say we won't have skills that have mobility restriction on them- that require you to channel or require a casting time where you can't move; but I think it's a blend between the two. It's neither extreme.[34]Steven Sharif

It'll be something that you can spec around to. Again it's gonna be a risk/reward thing. We put a lot of thought into what skills are overpowered or have kind of this overpowering nature to them and those are the kinds of skills that will generally find that will be like in-place type of skills; where you are now at risk if you are going to cast this spell, but there's a big reward if you do manage to get it off.[34]Jeffrey Bard

The revamped combat system will feature split-body animations, where the character's upper body can be locked by weapon attack animations while the lower body is free to continue moving.[4][11][12]

info-orange.pngThis section contains information from early testing phases. It will be updated as soon as new information is made available.
Skill Icon Rank 1 Rank 2 Rank 3
Blink Blink Icon.jpg Blinks forward in the direction you are traveling.[38][39][40][41] Now deals damage to enemies surrounding your departure location.[42][41] Reduced cooldown.[38][42][41]
Jump jump icon.png Dash with cooldown.[43] Cooldown is replaced by charges with individual cooldown.[43] Drops a bear trap at the location the ranger dashed from.[43]
Rush rush icon.png Rush toward a target; and upon reaching the target, deal an amount damage with a chance to knock the target down.[44] - -
Sprint sprint icon.png Increases movement speed. Using an ability ends sprint.[45] Increased resistance to disable abilities.[45] Clears crowd control when sprint starts and removes silence.[45]

Player movement

Sprinting will consume a percentage of a character's mana pool. Sprinting will not be permitted while in combat.[47]

I've instructed design to incorporate a mana consumption that's percentage based for sprinting. So it'll be a similar amount of time that each class, regardless of their mana values, will have in order to sprint and it will not be accessible while in a combat.[47]Steven Sharif

There is a toggleable walk/run (autorun) capability.[48]

There is not going to be any "go to waypoint" (auto-pathing) mechanics.[49]

Back-peddling (walking backwards) and strafing are slower than normal movement speed.[50]

Collision

There are player and spell collision mechanics in Ashes of Creation.[51]

  • Inertia and momentum physics will help prevent blocking doorways/access points. This is based on a character's direction and movement speed, and can be used to push people out of the way.[52][51]

Dodging

Dodging in Alpha-1 early combat.[53]

Another thing that's important about these action combats is the ability to dodge and moving out of the way of certain skill shots.[53]Steven Sharif

Dodge rolling type skills is housed in the action skill sets of agile classes such as Rogues or Fighters.[53][54]

Q: Will there be evade frames/ I-frames on dodge?
A: I would say it's a safe bet with regards to how we're approaching the hybrid combat that not only are gonna have true evasion skills that apply to more action-oriented skills that are coming your way, but you'll also have you know I-frame type skills that would apply perhaps to a tab targetable skills coming your way. So I think you're gonna have a healthy balance of both with it when it comes to skills that you can spec into.[55]Steven Sharif

Animations

There will be some animations that add flavor to specific races and classes, but generally animations will be reused as much as possible to decrease development time.[56]

We will have things that are known as sort of like racial abilities which will key into the class that you've chosen and those will almost certainly have animations that are kind of like one-offs that are associated with that class. They'll help you get some more like you know Ren'Kai flavor or some more Empyrean flavor but we have to reuse animations as much as possible in order to get to the finish line here so it'd be a super nice thing to do but probably not in the cards.[56]Jeffrey Bard

Animation cancelling

Animation cancelling will not be a combat mechanic.[57]

Weapon swapping

Weapon swapping in the Ashes of Creation MMORPG will be subject to a cooldown period following any damage taken or done by the player.[59][60]

  • The cooldown will be in the range of a few seconds.[60]

For the MMORPG we want there to be some time between damage received or damage done before you can swap your weapon. It's not going to be substantial. It will maybe be a few seconds.[60]Steven Sharif

Players cannot switch armor while in combat.[59][61]

See also

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Livestream, 24 September 2021 (1:22:46).
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Livestream, 26 June 2020 (1:19:50).
  3. shieldactiveblockA1.png
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Livestream, 30 July 2021 (31:22).
  5. Livestream, 28 May 2021 (1:14:50).
  6. steven-combat-revamp-update.png
  7. 7.0 7.1 Video, 26 February 2021 (6:17).
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 steven-combat-revamp-update-2.png
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 Livestream, 26 February 2021 (27:41).
  10. Interview, 7 February 2021 (49:18).
  11. 11.0 11.1 Interview, 13 June 2021 (4:12).
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 Livestream, 28 May 2021 (1:13:05).
  13. Livestream, 27 August 2021 (1:15:39).
  14. 14.00 14.01 14.02 14.03 14.04 14.05 14.06 14.07 14.08 14.09 14.10 14.11 14.12 Livestream, 28 August 2020 (1:15:39).
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 15.4 15.5 15.6 Livestream, 25 June 2021 (22:34).
  16. Livestream, 16 November 2017 (30:45).
  17. Livestream, 27 August 2021 (1:16:04).
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 18.4 Livestream, 25 June 2021 (27:43).
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 Livestream, 30 April 2020 (1:09:51).
  20. 20.0 20.1 Interview, 15 April 2019 (38:03).
  21. 21.0 21.1 Livestream, 25 June 2021 (27:10).
  22. Livestream, 26 March 2021 (59:21).
  23. Livestream, 25 June 2021 (26:11).
  24. Livestream, 30 April 2020 (40:19).
  25. 25.0 25.1 Newsletter, 7 August 2018
  26. 26.0 26.1 26.2 26.3 Livestream, 8 April 2018 (PM) (37:57).
  27. Livestream, 28 August 2020 (1:12:50).
  28. 28.0 28.1 28.2 28.3 28.4 Podcast, 4 August 2018 (1:07:59).
  29. 29.0 29.1 29.2 29.3 29.4 29.5 Podcast, 4 August 2018 (1:11:05).
  30. steven-action-tab-attack-range.png
  31. 31.0 31.1 31.2 31.3 31.4 Livestream, 30 October 2020 (1:15:59).
  32. 32.0 32.1 Livestream, 26 March 2021 (1:11:25).
  33. class cleaving.png
  34. 34.0 34.1 34.2 Livestream, 30 April 2020 (1:17:13).
  35. Livestream, 8 May 2017 (43:30).
  36. stevenclarification.png
  37. Livestream, 26 June 2020 (1:30:40).
  38. toast-keybinds-skills.png
  39. Video, 23 December 2020 (1:17).
  40. 41.0 41.1 41.2 Livestream, 31 July 2020 (57:33).
  41. 42.0 42.1 Video, 22 December 2020 (7:35).
  42. 43.0 43.1 43.2 Livestream, 16 October 2017 (45:52).
  43. progression.png
  44. 45.0 45.1 45.2 Livestream, 16 October 2017 (46:22).
  45. Video, 25 May 2017 (0:02).
  46. 47.0 47.1 Livestream, 30 July 2021 (1:11:29).
  47. autorun.jpg
  48. Livestream, 4 May 2018 (51:57).
  49. Livestream, 15 December 2017 (1:35:38).
  50. 51.0 51.1 collision.jpg
  51. Interview, 27 March 2020 (15:20).
  52. 53.0 53.1 53.2 Livestream, 28 August 2020 (1:19:24).
  53. Livestream, 26 June 2020 (1:24:06).
  54. 55.0 55.1 Livestream, 30 January 2020 (1:34:12).
  55. 56.0 56.1 Livestream, 22 December 2020 (1:12:56).
  56. Livestream, 17 May 2017 (1:05:11).
  57. Video, 17 August 2018 (0:01).
  58. 59.0 59.1 Interview, 18 July 2020 (1:03:45).
  59. 60.0 60.1 60.2 Livestream, 30 May 2019 (1:15:58).
  60. Livestream, 28 July 2017 (34:32).