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1.09 Balance Article

By d.Apollo - 8th January 2008 - 03:30 AM

In this article I am going to go over the current balance state of the patch 1.09 CnC3 and nail down where I think the problems lay and where they can be solved for a more fun and enjoyable gameplay experience. I am going to give my own opinion on what I think of the term 'balance' when related to online gaming and its key features mean.

Firstly I want you to read this quote taken from AGM's balance design article so that you understand what I am talking about further down

If a unit is overpowered, it can be stated that it is too cost-effective. If a unit is underpowered, it can be stated that it is not cost-effective enough. Simply stating that it is too fast, too powerful, or too expensive is not a complete statement regarding the balance of the unit. What is really being implied is that the unit is simply either too good for its cost, or not good enough.

When I read the word balance, I automatically think of the perfect game where every unit or power attribute is neither 'underpowered' (up) or 'overpowered' (op) alongside every other unit in the game with its cost. For me, I would love a game where players don't choose their favorite side solely dependent on that factions strength but choose them because of how unique they are or how their playing style fits the players own style i.e. an aggressive player would be most fitted with playing an aggressive faction and a passive player would fit best with playing a passive army.

Previous Patches

The history of CnC3 patches and balance have always been about overpowered factions or how weak one side is compared to another, here is a brief look at how each patch had its faults which made game play annoying and simply put, not fun.

1.00 = Nod were overpowered with Scorpion spam
1.06 = GDI were overpowered with Pitbull spam
1.07 = Scrin were overpowered with Seeker spam

In each patch above, you saw online players badges swinging from color to color as they changed their favorite faction with the swing of imbalance. As you can see, each major balance patch to date has always had one superior faction which dominated more than the others because of balance issues. I feel that this was caused because baby sits were not taken when improving a unit which made cnc3 one big balance swing.