Regarding Global Cooldowns

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MaxHayman
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Regarding Global Cooldowns

Post#1 » Mon May 23, 2022 3:00 pm

Recently, there has been some discontent regarding the way we communicated our recent changes and we’d like to thank you for all your comments and highlights on how much this means to you. We believe that the trust between the development team and the community should be always at its peak.

The recent changes that we pushed are part of a bigger effort on the ability system that would overall help the development of the project and the player experience in the long run. Thus, we initially refrained from sharing the bigger plan as it’s still in its earliest stage and at this very moment there are no observable benefits from it, but in the future, it opens several doors.

However, before we dig deeper into the global cooldown change, we would like to talk about the reasoning behind the bigger effort on the ability system and how that helps with future development and faster release of content in the future.
  • Faster turn around time on ability changes
  • Less knowledge required to do ability changes
  • More consistent and accurate real world values from game data
  • Easier way to recreate dungeon boss abilities, creature abilities and item related abilities
  • Accurate ability and character window tooltips (damage and timers)
  • Fixing some smaller nuances on how abilities worked
Lastly, we’d like to reassure you that we constantly strive to make the game better, create content, ease future development and bug fixing, however the tools that we have in hand are very limited and even created by our team over the years. Which is why some changes are introduced after many years of preparations. Moving forward, we will make sure to communicate game-changing implementations properly and firmly through our Community Management team.


In Age of Reckoning there was a 1.5 second global cooldown, which was pretty standard in MMORPGS and existed in games such as World of Warcraft. There was also the functionality to queue up their next ability so it would fire right as the global cooldown ended. This had the benefit of allowing people to queue the ability and have them fire at the same time with nice wiggle room for latency.

Why was the global cooldown changed to 1.1 seconds on Return of Reckoning?

When the ability system was implemented there was no support for the ability queueing system. The ability system worked by the client sending to the server the next ability to be queued before it was due to be sent, this could occur any time during the global cooldown. Then, because we didn’t support the ability queue system, the ability would be cancelled. So if people wanted to fire abilities exactly 1.5 seconds after the previous they would require impeccable timing and low ping. Therefore a period of 0.4 seconds was introduced, to allow the ability to be fired correctly when queued. This number was chosen because the client would usually send the queued ability around 75% of the way through the global cooldown. However, the drawback of this implementation was that people who had higher latency would fire the ability after someone with low ping and that the global cooldown animation in the client wasn’t the real global cooldown.

Why was the global cooldown changed back to 1.5 seconds?

When the Return of Reckoning ability system was implemented a lot of the design and implementation was based on assumptions. Systems didn’t work exactly how they were supposed to and workarounds had to be made in certain cases. When we originally started we were not able to do client side changes and any ability changes, either due to balancing or workarounds for limitations in our implementation caused the data which is in the client to be different from what we had on our server. Over time we gained the ability to do balance changes and did research on how the ability system on the client worked. However, now we have the burden of having people to understand how to implement ability changes twice and in two systems which work in different ways. This has caused a lot of problems, and the data has only become more and more out of sync over time.

We decided we needed to simplify this and decided to have one system which was used in both the client and server. However, because we do not have the ability to change the client code we have no choice but to implement a new system in the server to match the client. Another benefit of this is that a lot of unworking or bugged abilities would work correctly. One big example is that abilities for use for creatures in, for example dungeons, would be working with very little effort. A lot of work has been done to match the data so that changes we made over the years in the server were represented on the client. Part of this change is that a lot of the values in the client were designed around the 1.5 second global cooldown. Therefore we added support for the ability queues and removed the 0.4 second period in order for all the data to line up correctly. With a 1.5 second global cooldown the scaling on stats and weapon DPS matches, regardless if abilities are instant cast, have a cast time or are channeled abilities. This gives a more solid ground for balance decisions than making them on top of calculations that don’t really add up. Additionally, this would have the added benefit of being able to play nicer with players with higher ping, as we have a global playerbase.

Is it possible to change the GCD/what would be necessary in order to do so properly?

It is a giant can of worms to do it properly when you start thinking about it. We can scale the stat & weapon multipliers to match a different global cooldown duration. But if you scale stat multiplier down, should you also scale base damage down to match/be same portion of the damage? What about cooldowns, if cooldown was equal to 10 global cooldowns before, should it also be scaled down? What about dot/hot tick rates, usually they are 2 global cooldown durations, should they tick faster? What about buff durations, if a buff lasted 10 global cooldowns, should that also scale down? If dot tick rates are scaled to match the global cooldown, you have to adjust buff durations as many are coupled with dots. Then what about cost, should that also scale down? Doing less for the same cost doesn't really make sense.

All of these things really need to be thought about and a proper decision taken before doing that.
We would maybe have chosen a different GCD duration if we designed the game from scratch, but it would be a massive rework of abilities to change it currently.

We hope this gives everyone some insight into our process. We apologise for the delay in this post but be assured we wanted to consider all the factors.
Max Hayman

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Akalukz
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Re: Regarding Global Cooldowns

Post#2 » Mon May 23, 2022 3:11 pm

Good enough. Thanks for taking the time to lay it out.
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Automation
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Re: Regarding Global Cooldowns

Post#3 » Mon May 23, 2022 3:12 pm

It did broke allot of abbilitys and AP management tho.
Game feels actually alpha stage atm.
Can we get some info on this aspect too?
It would be great if BO aoe punt works without having a close range target again + it doesnt even punt the target it self...
And it would be great aswell to not have to change builds around just so we arent AP starved 5seconds in the fight.

Elemint
Posts: 243

Re: Regarding Global Cooldowns

Post#4 » Mon May 23, 2022 3:14 pm

I understand the importance of laying the groundwork, but currently i assume you have nothing built on the groundwork. Why not delay it until you can push the change you wanted to do with it? For some people it's nothing but for some it's a massive difference in gameplay, for the promise of changes in the undetermined future. Could be 2 months before something happens with it for all we know

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Kenshiken
Posts: 84

Re: Regarding Global Cooldowns

Post#5 » Mon May 23, 2022 3:15 pm

How much time is needed now to fix all the stuff that got broke? (class balance and other stuff)
Is it right time to implement it now while we have less and less players?
Why not keep develop it in another branch for some months while taking into account drastically changed class balance?

It's better to not break 8 years of player experience, balance, and keep it hard to develop till you get more Engineers on the team that can come to the better way of implementing/fix skills, damage formulas, etc.
But it look's like you choose the easy way while breaking passion playerbase to 30% that like the change, and 70% that don't like the change and fell in love with entirely different game/old gameplay flow

1 Active engineer is just abysmal situation from architecture stand point.
He can push whatever solution he want no matter how much harm it will do.
What if Dalen left? We would be stuck with this half-dead system now? God.

I don't understand how this change was approved at all.
It's bad. I'm actually sad that Max got behind this implementation.
Time to move on, I guess.
Last edited by Kenshiken on Mon May 23, 2022 3:55 pm, edited 21 times in total.

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blakokami
Posts: 136

Re: Regarding Global Cooldowns

Post#6 » Mon May 23, 2022 3:22 pm

This almost reads as if Dalen wrote it but used MaxHayman's account to post it so it would go over better with the players.

I'm glad you guys will be able to get things done quicker and it will be less work for you but the 1.5 sec GCD is too long and changes the feel of the game too much towards being slow and clunky. Also, AP is a massive issue atm. No one cares if AP is the same as it was before, playing with no AP isn't fun.
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Minisynn
Posts: 48

Re: Regarding Global Cooldowns

Post#7 » Mon May 23, 2022 3:24 pm

No reference at all to the other overwhelming change which was the AP famine caused by this patch, rip
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Mgdw
Posts: 12

Re: Regarding Global Cooldowns

Post#8 » Mon May 23, 2022 3:29 pm

one day : "we dont want to do AoR, stop asking for same content "
next day :" we did this change cause it was like this in AoR !"

fact is : AP are litteraly melting like never on AOR, on every class .. it became frustrating to play right now... and for what ? for bigger plan ? when ?

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Vegetaplays
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Re: Regarding Global Cooldowns

Post#9 » Mon May 23, 2022 3:34 pm

I'd figure I'd try and give a constructive post about the recent patch. To be honest, personally, the entire patch felt untested and unfinished. I understand and respect that the developers want to see a new light for the game, however, it still felt as this was untested. Bugs are inevitable, yes, I get it, but if anything can be done to minimize it then in my honest opinion it's better to push back things and try and make it more clean and ready. Regarding global cool downs, I notice it even as an NA player, however I can get used to it but with AP currently, the game feels clunky and slow, and in a weird unplayable state. World of Warcraft for an example had abilities off global cool down, during age of reckonings life span. Respectfully, I feel the game is trying to be something it isn't. Again, I understand bugs are inevitable on every patch, but being in a weird state for an extended period of time I felt has hurt more instead of help. I am glad that more communication will be brought forth in upcoming changes. Thank you for taking your time to make this post.
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Re: Regarding Global Cooldowns

Post#10 » Mon May 23, 2022 3:45 pm

First off all thank you for clarification. This was much needed. Although not very satisfying. Are we stuck with pausing mid fights to get any ap back? Which is for me the most annoying part of the patch. What about the broken abilities on BO etc?

"We can scale the stat & weapon multipliers to match a different global cooldown duration." Wasn't weapon dps on AoR much higher than in RoR? Lost vale 2hand weapons had 87 dps on live, rr75 sc 2hand had 101 dps. Highest weapon dps is RoR is 85.6. Though i dont know if you changed dps scaling for melee in RoR compared to AoR.

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