Robocraft – Skill Versus Reward

June 1, 2016

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Through experimentation, I have found that Large Weapons in RoboCraft cannot really be replaced by smaller, regular weapons. The larger weapons are too powerful, too strong, and too tough to put away. So I had to put the massive weapon system that I “found” back onto my robot after experimenting with other, smaller weapon systems in its place.

This strikes me as a problem. My freedom is inhibited in a game that should be all about creativity. Why allow me to build my own robot if the underlying rule is that one absolutely must build a robot with the biggest, strongest parts that fits within your current CPU allowance? (Different parts have different CPU usage, and you can only go up to a certain CPU number, based on your current player level.)

Even if I don’t use the large weapon, I need it on my robot to soak up damage.

On the other hand, I can now see how rail guns are considered the overpowered system of the smaller weapon systems. I finally “found” enough lower-mid-level rail guns to create a decent railgun array (>3 guns). I’m not even bothering with low-level rail guns. They are too weak to work well. I am a decent shot, so I am destroying more enemy blocks, especially from a distance. I’m not bad at ripping individual weapons off enemy robots. When all else fails, I punch holes through center-of-mass.

I’m still being blown away by everyone else, because almost everyone else has time to play longer, or are playing paid premium, allowing them to “find” more equipment, which equates to finding more “rare” and “legendary” equipment, which equates to bigger, tougher guns. So I am using my mid-level rails against high-level weaponry.

The ultimate weapon to have, as demonstrated in my time during the “Armorgeddon” weekend on 5/22-5/23, is the Ion Disruptor (or whatever the name is.) Basically, it is a super-shotgun, firing six or seven high-level rail shots in a concentrated spread. This is the weapon that blows me away in four shots. (Used to be two or three, before I found middle-level, tougher equipment.) The team with the majority of “shotguns” will win. You want to be on that team. But matching is so messed up, that there is no way to predict if you’ll be on the winning team or not.

The in-game shotguns need to be adjusted down. They are by-far, the most powerful weapon, leading to “seal-clubbing” (destroying weaker opponents to rack up the points), and munchkin-builds, which focus on sneak and surprise attacks, which can rack up the points against all player levels. It’s a high-level weapon, so I understand it still needs to be one of the more powerful weapons in the game. It just needs to stop being the juggernaut that it is now.

Maybe make it a “glass cannon” by dropping its health, so it can actually be shot off more easily. Maybe reduce the physical damage by 90%, but slow the target’s energy regeneration by 50% for 5 seconds, completely changing the dynamic of this weapon from assault to support. Maybe increase the spread, so that the damage is not so concentrated and some pellets miss completely. Maybe reduce the number of “pellets” in the blast. Its price is on-par with the lock-on missile launcher. It’s effect needs to be reduced, so that it is on par with the lock-on missile launcher’s damage.

High-level weapons are the thing to have in this game. High-level weapons win the game. So the relationship between paid premium and these high-level weapons means that Robocraft has slipped into the unfortunate territory of “Pay-to-win”, and since I only play for free, I do not regularly win. It all depends on if I am matched into the team with more high-level weaponry. It’s not a good system. There is some talk on the forums about this problem.

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