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Author Topic: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy  (Read 6279 times)

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Offline CptBiym

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For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« on: September 22, 2017, 07:58:02 pm »
I think it'll be beneficial for the dedicated devs of this game to hear what I and a lot of veteran players of musket games have to say. Since days of the original battlegrounds mod, I've seen this genre change and develop and so here is the most important aspect of the game that needs revision (yes, more than melee combat). I suggest reading the entirety of my post before commenting.

MUSKET INNACURACY AND UNWIELDINESS

The bedrock and bread and butter of a musket game, and a necessary component that needs to be done right and also feel satisfying. Muskets of the napoleonic era are no where near as innaccurate as protrayed in films and videogames of the era.

Trained soldiers could hit a human-sized target at 70-90m and volleys to inflict maximum damage were aimed to be conducted just under this range at 60m. Various soldier accounts of the era point to unwiedly accuracy becoming too big a burden at and beyond 150m.

In the 1814 To All Sportsmen, Colonel George Hanger wrote, “A soldier’s musket, if not exceedingly ill-bored, will strike a figure of a man at 80 yards; it may even at a hundred; but a soldier must be very unfortunate indeed who shall be wounded by a common musket at 150 yards, providing his antagonist aims at him; and as to firing at a man at 200 yards with a common musket, you may as well fire at the moon and have the same hope of hitting him."

The reason for closing the distance was not only to get within the musket's kill distance, but to strike fear through the visual and auditory threat a massed enemy force would present.

HOW DOES THIS RELATE TO HOLDFAST?

At the moment the preferred engagement distance and the distance you can be confident (key word: confident) in hitting an enemy (half the time) is around 8-10 meters. The bulletdrop mechanic needs to be redone. For every 15 meters you need to adjust upwards about 1 full reticle. Meaning at 20 meters you need to aiming as if you are lobbing a grenade by your enemy's feet. At 50 meters you need to be aiming at distant clouds for your shot to come back to earth and land near your target. I don't seek to offend, but this would not be the case if someone working on the game would have ever fired a musket of the era in question, ever seen someone fire a musket, read specifications and tactics relating to these weapons, or sought out first hand accounts on how these muskets functioned and were utilised. But that's okay, the drop can be easily fixed by straightening the trajectory and implementing slight bulletdrop beyond 60-90 meters.

The bulletspread of the muskets is another aspect of shooting that needs to be corrected. At around 10m distance the spread seems to be 1-2 meters. Double the distance, and this increases to 3-5 meters. Again, painfully unrealistic and unrepresentative of napoleonic era weapons. Muskets had around a 1/3 meter grouping at 50 meters meaning that a shot at an enemy 50 meters away nearly always delivered a hit. Beyond this distance, the grouping increases slightly and at 100m a soldier could still expect his shots to land within 1-3m of one another.

In other words, Holdfast has a real musket's spread at 100m come into effect at around 15 meters. You can thank blind luck beyond 10 meters if you land a shot. Before any claims are made by someone that they can land shots from 25-40m consistently, the answer is no. You cannot consistently shoot at that distance in Holdfast. I've topped the scoreboard various matches by adjusting the reticle for ridiculous bulletdrop, shooting into masses, and firing quickly. However, most of the kills beyond 20 meters have been on a soldier 2-3 meters to the left or right of my target and rarely directly where I was aiming as should it should be due to the inconsequential spread muskets have within 50 meters distance. Realistically, this spread of over 3 meters would happen at around 90-100 meters. This too can be easily fixed by tightening the shooting pattern significantly according to real musket spreads.

HOW DOES THIS CHANGE HOLDFAST'S GAMEPLAY?

There is enough argument from a realism standpoint to warrant a change to the shooting mechanics. At the moment, the game feels like a miniature, arcade FPS/TPS game set in the musket era because of the 10-20 meter engagement distance and the ineffectiveness of the muskets and rifles. The unit portrait and minimap do not help remedy this at all. However, having been an avid lover of community line battle and siege events for a long time, far before the warband NW mod, I must say that the engagement distance portrayed in this game is a real threat to the atmospheric and strategic depth that could and should be present in this game. Even from watching early event gameplay I noticed how the musket's effective range of around 10 meters causes lines to, after frustratingly trying to trade blows at 30 meters and beyond, close the distance to fire a determining volley and end what could've been an incredible back and forth mass volley engagement if only the muskets had realistic drop and spread. After playing the game for a day and a half straight, I can confirm my doubts.

Another point that must be taken into consideration is that cavalry will not be punished for blind charges at enemy infantry. Closing the gap will be incredibly cost-effective for a cavalry force seeing as the musket's spread will not be seen even as a mild deterrent.

I congratulate you for sticking with me, hopefully the developers and community can come together on this issue and see that, for realism and gameplay purposes, this needs to be labeled as high priority on the early access to-do list right with a melee rehaul.

A strong shooting system must come first and foremost in this type of game. Good shooting and melee systems will propel this game forward while badones will hold it back even if new factions, weapons, and cavalry are introduced. Thankfully, it's easy to fix what's in place because of the base game the developers worked hard to create.

Offline James Brock

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2017, 08:02:16 pm »
I do find the inaccuracy of muskets a little to much. They should tighten it. Feels like the kill range for a musket is simular if not the same as a pistol. Balancing is needed.

Offline DΛRKWΛVΣ

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2017, 08:24:53 pm »
I love these long taking musket firefights with artillery coming in. It brings some kind of tension. And when there is need to, there can happen an epic melee charge when the melee is fixed.

Offline SnuggleBunny

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #3 on: September 22, 2017, 09:29:45 pm »
I think low accuracy is fine, but the bullet drop is totally ridiculous.

Keep in mind that if you increased the accuracy to reflect the real capabilities of the weapons, you would have to reduce reload speed. Currently, it seems to be around 10 seconds, even while moving. In real life, of course, very well trained soldiers could reload in 15 seconds, but in the heat of battle with fear and fouled barrels, it was more like twice a minute. I expect that most players would not enjoy that so much, but much more accurate muskets + the same reload speeds as we have now would make melee useless. So I feel that maybe the inaccuracy is fine, but the bullet drop is just stupid. NW had bullet drop, yes, but you really only noticed it past 70 yards or so, and I thought that was fine.

Offline Limbo

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2017, 10:26:09 pm »
Let's put it like this: it feelts odd putting a reticule a certain distance over and above a target of your choosing instead of on it. Especially when you find that target is well within the effective envelope of said weapon...

Offline Darkenmal

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2017, 11:38:45 pm »
You are absolutely correct CptBiym, the musket range needs to be overhauled. Great post, hopefully the devs take note of this.

Offline Zahari

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #6 on: September 22, 2017, 11:52:09 pm »
Guys, wait till you play a proper LB. If you learn the pattern you can easily hit the target (I mean another line not a single person) from 50meters. I would say that after some time you will be able to hit the line from 100 meters as effective as from 50. Regiments will figure it out fast cause you can turn on missile projection and see how it really works and train it. I give you my word that after spending 3 mins of learning the pattern (basically just figuring out where should I place my crooshair) I was able to hit 7/10 shots on the distance of 50-70meters

Offline SnuggleBunny

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2017, 11:56:02 pm »
It's not that it's impossible to hit people, it just feels idiotic to have to aim well above the target, especially when the amount of bullet drop does not reflect the actual weaponry at all. I'm fine with muskets not being very accurate, but having to aim almost as high above the enemy's head as when using a bow in warband is just silly.

Offline Limbo

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #8 on: September 23, 2017, 12:35:00 am »
It's not that it's impossible to hit people, it just feels idiotic to have to aim well above the target, especially when the amount of bullet drop does not reflect the actual weaponry at all. I'm fine with muskets not being very accurate, but having to aim almost as high above the enemy's head as when using a bow in warband is just silly.

this!!!

Offline CptBiym

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2017, 04:19:55 am »
Zahari, I will post the same response I gave another person on the steam discussion boards because I think it applies to your comment precisely. Also I'd bet a lot money that you can't hit an enemy soldier at 50-70 meters 70% of the time.

This game's success will come down to strong shooting and melee mechanics and of course the weekly, community-driven linebattle and siege events. These don't have to be necessarily competitive in nature. However, one thing's for sure, both competitive regiment v regiment events and public linebattles will only continue to thrive if they produce strategic depth for commanders, satisfying musket exchanges for the soldiers, and a realistic atmosphere for all players. If shooting is done right, we can place a checkmark after these 3 points. If not, then commanders will only need to ensure their line get the first volley off within 25 meters to secure victory rather than play through the more fruitful alternative of a slow exchange of musket fire at a distance while working cooperatively with friendly lines to approach/flank/outplay the enemy. Soldiers on the other hand will soon become frustrated at these quickly decisive (and unrealistic) close range exchanges. This is mostly from a gameplay perspective. Historically, it makes no sense whatsoever for muskets to have 100+ meter spreads occurring at 20 meters and any atmosphere and realism driven player or regiment will quickly grow tired of the shooting mechanic and its detrimental effect on 125+ player events.

Offline Fixou

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2017, 10:50:22 am »
i agree but the main thing i dont like the much in the game actually is the reticle i dont know if it will be easy to change it but he is so big!

Offline TooL69

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #11 on: September 23, 2017, 01:46:45 pm »
Zahari, I will post the same response I gave another person on the steam discussion boards because I think it applies to your comment precisely. Also I'd bet a lot money that you can't hit an enemy soldier at 50-70 meters 70% of the time.

This game's success will come down to strong shooting and melee mechanics and of course the weekly, community-driven linebattle and siege events. These don't have to be necessarily competitive in nature. However, one thing's for sure, both competitive regiment v regiment events and public linebattles will only continue to thrive if they produce strategic depth for commanders, satisfying musket exchanges for the soldiers, and a realistic atmosphere for all players. If shooting is done right, we can place a checkmark after these 3 points. If not, then commanders will only need to ensure their line get the first volley off within 25 meters to secure victory rather than play through the more fruitful alternative of a slow exchange of musket fire at a distance while working cooperatively with friendly lines to approach/flank/outplay the enemy. Soldiers on the other hand will soon become frustrated at these quickly decisive (and unrealistic) close range exchanges. This is mostly from a gameplay perspective. Historically, it makes no sense whatsoever for muskets to have 100+ meter spreads occurring at 20 meters and any atmosphere and realism driven player or regiment will quickly grow tired of the shooting mechanic and its detrimental effect on 125+ player events.

I fully support you!

I like the musket in Blackwake, it really is a formidable weapon at a distance of 100 yards:
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In addition, from a historical point of view, it is close to a real musket (I'm talking about a slow reload and good accuracy):
Spoiler
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Offline Wallace

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #12 on: September 23, 2017, 07:52:40 pm »
I think that the devs should make aiming the musket like in blakewake I feel like aiming down the barrel would help with shooting and make the grouping alittle tighter

Offline Lecourbe

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #13 on: September 23, 2017, 10:50:17 pm »
I think that the devs should make aiming the musket like in blakewake I feel like aiming down the barrel would help with shooting and make the grouping alittle tighter

Ye, it could be cool to have a sight in first person. Doesn't mean it will be more accurate, but it could be realistic and funny. :)

Offline Leon

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Re: For Devs | Urgent change | Musket accuracy
« Reply #14 on: September 23, 2017, 11:27:14 pm »
I think musket accuracy is set as it should be.
Bullet drops approx. 2cm when shooting from 100m distance.
X and Z axis are great! Wery realistic!

If you want a game with no bullet drops and x  or z-axis changes you should think of changing game platform.
With accuracy being too accurate, there is no sense to have rifles or light infantry in the game.

If you want better shooting, practice it or move your line close to enemy one like they did in good old days. Face to face.