2

Release notes for 50148

June 6, 2014

Another week, another weekly build for Minimum! This time we got in the much requested auto-balance and team switching feature, added a change to the way weapon leveling works and made some changes to the Healing Katana and the shotgun class of weapons.

Changes:

  • Added a new secondary ability to the Healing Katana. Instead of dashing, it now generates an AoE heal. It heals 50 flat health at level 1 and scales to 90 flat health at level 5. With a full set of level 3 armor 90 flat health is about 50% of your max health.
  • Significantly increased the accuracy of shotguns while running and jumping. The previous low accuracy of these weapons was pretty out of place with the run and gun feel of Minimum they were the only weapons to suffer this penalty after it was removed from sniper rifles a few patches ago. This brings them in line with the rest of our weapons.
  • Reduced the damage on the auto shotgun to compensate for the massive accuracy boost it got with the shotgun changes. Other shotguns are unchanged.
  • CIT03 now correctly displays its name as Disaster Zone.
  • Added a new team auto-balancing feature and team switching. This feature is described in more detail later in the patch notes.
  • Added a new weapon level scaling feature to Titan Mode. This feature is described in more detail later in the patch notes.
  • Made some changes to the spawn containers in CIT03 to see if these alleviate some of the spawn camping problems. Consider these an experiment!

Auto-Balance and Team Switching

First off, we’re sorry this took so long to get out! We wanted to make sure that it behaved in a way that didn’t disrupt games or make players angry when their team was unexpectedly swapped. Auto-balancing takes place in between (or at the beginning of) matches during the warmup phase. Teams are shuffled based on 3 criteria in rough order of importance:

  1. Ensuring both teams have an equal number of players
  2. Ensuring the average skill level (based on score in previous rounds) is roughly equivalent
  3. Ensuring the average account level of the two teams is roughly equivalent

Team switching is enabled whenever one team has 2 or more players than the other team. Players on the team with more people will see the “SWITCH TEAM” button enabled on their respawn screen when dead, and will receive a broadcasted server message letting them know that the teams are unbalanced and they have the option to switch.

Weapon Level Scaling

One of the core problems we’ve had with Minimum’s balance is the massive differential between level 1 and level 5 weapons. We addressed part of the problem in our previous patch by introducing scaling health and defense to all armor pieces so that someone with a full level 3 armor set is no longer subject to sudden deaths from enemies wielding level 5 weapons.

This was only a partial fix, however, since two people with full armor sets were still at a major power differential when one had a level 5 weapon. Weapon scaling attempts to narrow this gap as games go on such that skilled players can still acquire significant early advantages by playing well and getting kills, but that advantage decays as games go longer.

How it works: each time a Titan escort phase ends (both Titans are destroyed) the weapon level of all players is permanently increased by 1. This caps at level 3, so once two Titan escort phases have elapsed the auto leveling will stop at 3. This is our initial implementation of this, and we are considering granting half (rather than full) weapon levels to allow for more Titan escort phases and a slower ramp of the weapon buff.

We’ll keep a close eye on what this does to balance and the feedback you have for us after you’ve had the weekend to try it out. Good hunting, and we’ll see you in the City!

About the Author: Minimum