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View Poll Results: What do you think?
Overpowered 1 3.57%
Balanced 4 14.29%
Underpowered 23 82.14%
Voters: 28. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-17-2010, 11:17 AM   #1
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What do you think of the Sentry Gun?

Following in Chilled's footsteps, I'm going to see how divided the community is on a particular issue that I have. What do you think of the Engineer? More specifically, what do you think of his gun?

UNDERPOWERED:
The gun is weak, the gun has no push, the gun goes down easily, etc

BALANCED:
It's perfectly balanced or close enough.

OVERPOWERED:
The gun is strong, too much push, stays up too long, etc

You should try to outline your reasons in a post.

Last edited by Bridget; 07-17-2010 at 11:23 AM.
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Old 07-17-2010, 11:53 AM   #2
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but I think we're all in agreement that the SG ain't right - hence why stuff is being tested in beta. And I think we all agree that it's not working in beta either... Something has got to change and I think we all agree.

This isn't going to help much.
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Old 07-17-2010, 11:53 AM   #3
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i think its a decorative object which you place anywhere you like, and then few moments later it disappears for reasons beyond my comprehension.
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Old 07-17-2010, 01:00 PM   #4
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Really underpowered.
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Old 07-17-2010, 02:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elmo View Post
but I think we're all in agreement that the SG ain't right - hence why stuff is being tested in beta. And I think we all agree that it's not working in beta either... Something has got to change and I think we all agree.

This isn't going to help much.
+1
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Old 07-17-2010, 02:43 PM   #6
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Elmo: No, I think this is a great thread. You have to look at things from our perspective. We don't know what's going on. In 2.1 the sentry gun was incredibly weak and stayed that way. If you look at the old threads, the majority of people talk about how weak it is, with a few people claiming it's overpowered.

2.2 comes out, no change

2.3 comes out, no change

2.4 comes out, the push is finally increased from 2.1, but it's still weak as hell, a joke compared to 1.x or TFC. In a way this is almost worse, because a change this small made me think anyway, that this is the dev's idea of balance. That the existing sg was so close to perfect, this is all they thought needed to be changed.

2.1 came out in September of 2008. So we're approaching 2 years that it's been weak as hell. We don't know at what point the devs apparently stopped fighting us and now agree it's too weak. Until you made your statement, I assumed that the devs we're still heading down what I consider a delusional route. I'm actually very curious at what point a decision was made that finally made the team say that this change was too weak.
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Old 07-17-2010, 04:16 PM   #7
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Makes sense why you believe that. If I didn't know better then I'd be in the same boat as you I think.

It's because we don't believe it only lies in fire power and there's greater mechanic change that needs to take place. Before now I think we've been too afraid of changing such things if we could help it - or maybe we just didn't have the idea *shrugs* I'm guessing.

The idea we were playing with currently was to make it significantly more powerful but ensuring that it WOULD go down after continual battering. If we kept the mechanics as they are but ramp up the overall power the chances are that we get multiple sgs locking down areas and making them impassible and making FF boring.

If we ensure that powerful SGs WILL go down after continual battering then even with multiple SG's there's a positive feeling that you can make a hole and take them out - even if one by one - they will eventually go down.

I'm not the best at explaining things but I had a go.

I could agree a few extra dmg wouldn't have gone a miss in previous pratches but I do feel the general mechanics of the SG need to be played with.
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Old 07-17-2010, 04:19 PM   #8
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Engeneer is one of my favorite classes and tbh isnt underpowered at all, it powns all dudes that dont conc slide properly, and in adition to that engeneer can defend vs any class with his supershotgun and grens. And gets impossible to off in several maps with a lot of sentrys.
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Old 07-17-2010, 04:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zE View Post
And gets impossible to off in several maps with a lot of sentrys.
yep, hence not overpowering the SG previously. It's better to be underpowered (although maybe frustrating to the single player) than to overpower the sg lock down maps and piss off multiple people.

^^ tl;dr
at least this way it was 1/9 people rather than 8/9 lol
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Old 07-17-2010, 04:46 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elmo
Before now I think we've been too afraid of changing such things if we could help it -
I can believe this, but 2.0 and 2.1 were such massive changes gameplay-wise, I don't understand why the dev team was afraid of completely changing the game afterwards when they had done it already.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elmo
or maybe we just didn't have the idea
I can GUARANTEE this wasn't the case. If it was, you guys should just be shot in the head, no offense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elmo
If we ensure that powerful SGs WILL go down after continual battering then even with multiple SG's there's a positive feeling that you can make a hole and take them out - even if one by one - they will eventually go down.
Again, I'm confused by this. Even in 1.0, FF sentries succumbed faster than TFC ones. They offer no splash protection, so if you fire at them continuously, it will usually take out the sg and rockets will shove the engineer back unless he has kung-fu timing. A medic with a supernailgun can often overwhelm an ng's ability to keep it repaired fast enough. An O sniper (this is more for AvD) can take out an sg in one hit. Spies have more abilities than ever for messing sg's up. I'm not sure why you think the current sg's don't topple under fire, that's something the soldier excels in.

One thing I thought TF2 did right, was to have powerful sentries, but have them also slow to go up, like it's an investment. It's also much more satisfying when you take them out, because then, like you said, it punches a hole in defense and creates a window of opportunity and feels like an accomplishment. If that's really what you guys want, why the hell did you decrease the build time so they can be almost immediately after one's been destroyed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elmo
I could agree a few extra dmg wouldn't have gone a miss in previous pratches but I do feel the general mechanics of the SG need to be played with.
It sounds like you weren't the one who nerfed the sg in the first place. Just remember it's the PUSH that's more crucial for sg defense than the DAMAGE. This is what keeps people from capping flags.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zE
Engeneer is one of my favorite classes and tbh isnt underpowered at all, it powns all dudes that dont conc slide properly, and in adition to that engeneer can defend vs any class with his supershotgun and grens. And gets impossible to off in several maps with a lot of sentrys.
Well you're looking at things from a CTF perspective, where typically the worst thing sentries are dealing with are scouts and medics. I'm looking at this from AvD perspective, where you have demoman flying in with mirvs, soldiers bombarding them with rockets, and even heavies sometimes outgunning them. Out of curiousity, how did you deal with sentries in TFC? Those were MUCH more powerful than FF's and much better balanced for AvD play.
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Old 07-17-2010, 04:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elmo View Post
yep, hence not overpowering the SG previously. It's better to be underpowered (although maybe frustrating to the single player) than to overpower the sg lock down maps and piss off multiple people.

^^ tl;dr
at least this way it was 1/9 people rather than 8/9 lol
Sorry, quick add-on. I've said it before, a defense full of engineers is a DREAM for the spy. There's already a counter to that.

Also piss less people off, yes, make the game more enjoyable, not really. When you cripple the sg, it makes AvD games a JOKE, which leads to the game being almost unwinnable on defense (provided O isn't clueless) and over so fast it's not very fun anymore on offense. While he used to be one of my favorite classes, I typically don't play NG now because he's so difficult now. The changes have made me play O solly much more, but for many maps, that's turned into kind of a steamroller experience.
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Old 07-17-2010, 05:02 PM   #12
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fair nuff - I don't have all the answers for you as to why things were done previously. I can guess, but I don't think guessing is a safe option.

I'm one of the devs that stays out of a lot of decisions that don't directly affect my play because I don't feel I have valid contributions. I don't try to tweak classes that I don't know how to play. All in all I put faith in others to make the right decisions. I don't know how it feels to play an engi...

We're not even in disagreement. So yeah, I've got little more to say!
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Old 07-17-2010, 07:02 PM   #13
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I wouldn't mind the push being upped a tiny bit, but I do not want it to be like it was before where it was nearly impossible to get past.

But I agree that it's underpowered as far as its strength and bullet damage are concerned.
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Old 07-17-2010, 07:38 PM   #14
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only things I dont like is it goes down do easily and the explosion damage is a bit to powerful in my opinion
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Old 07-18-2010, 12:21 AM   #15
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The rate at which you can get a sentry up and upgraded is completely dependant on the metal supply. That, in my experience, is what makes it ineffective on AvD maps and why it is so hard to balance on all maps. If they are weak, but quick to build, then they are not underpowered.

One thing we may do is remove the explosion from when the sentry dies. We don't want the engy to be afraid to repair his gun.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chilledsanity
I'm not sure why you think the current sg's don't topple under fire, that's something the soldier excels in.
He's talking about the stronger one we wanted to make. Much stronger, but eventually will die even if you repair its armor. If the solution is a simple matter of damage/health/push, then our beta testers can tweak those numbers, then report them to us so they can be hard-coded for the next patch.
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Old 07-18-2010, 12:34 AM   #16
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I think that the sentry needs to be faster at locking on to an enemy, and maybe have it so if it would have to fire to near another sentry have it stop shooting as to not hit the other sentry.
If you speed up the rounds it shoots & lower the damage a bit then you would have better chance at hitting almost all classes but still be a challenge getting ramp sliders & kamazi mirv throwers.
Yeah lower the explosion damage by about half imo.
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Old 07-18-2010, 02:46 AM   #17
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The sentry doesn't miss once it's locked on to a player. The limiting factor is its turn speed. The sentry will fire (and miss) an instant before it has locked on, as a sort of warning that it's about to hit you (this was added in 2.4, I believe), but upping the rate of fire won't help its accuracy.
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Old 07-18-2010, 05:11 AM   #18
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I'd like to see what people think if...

Detection range was upped by 10% to 15%. Basically be able to put it on the bridge by the button and have it detect anyone that shows up at the very end of the tunnel.

Turn rate was upped by about 10% or so. Right now many classes can just run by an SG and take little to no damage. A half decent concer can get past it no problem, a really good one can get past a room full of SGs, no matter how good they are placed.

Push was upped by about 5% to 10%. More so for those in the air, after all the people on the ground have the ground to push against to resist, the people in the air have nothing to keep them going.

Any one of those would be a good start, even better would be some form of combo of them, maybe at lower amounts then I suggested, at least to try them out.


Other suggestions...

2 or more SGs within a certain range of each other can "network" to increase their detection range. Say the range of an SG is 100. You put another SG within that range, and both of them can see from one end of the range to the other. So instead of just seeing 100 around them, it now sees its own area plus that of its networked buddy or buddies. Also when networked, they get a bonus of 5% range for each one linked to a max of say 3 sgs. The minus to this is that if a spy sabs one, they all go down for say 2 to 3 seconds while they "disconnect" the sabotaged one from the network. This would also include the sabbed one.


The closer in someone gets the faster the SG turns. But the faster it turns the less accurate it is or the less damage it does. So it could keep up with a scout, but the scout could live longer. Heavy running around it, it does normal damage. Scout running around it it does 1/4 of the damage. (but they would have to be right up close to it, touching it for the damage to go down that much).


Any one of these I think would be an improvement on the SG, but I think in general a combo of some of the ideas would be better.




BTW its easy to kill an SG even if you have an engi sitting there guarding it. If there is no dispenser and no pack near, you keep tapping the sg with nails because it costs the same to fix the SG if its 1 nail or 30 nails. So you tap it with a couple of nails, let him fix it, tap it, let him fix, do this a couple of times and hes out of metal and has to run to get more. Thats when you take the SG down.

If the dispenser is close, nail the sg a time or 2, when he goes to the dispenser kill that while hes beside it and he dies, sg is then open season.

If hes sitting on top of the bag with the sg, there is almost no chance of killing the sg, but if its at least a little ways away, nail the sg off and on till he needs to run for the bag, then kill the sg.


Most of the time, these ways work well for getting rid of an SG. there are ways to counter them of course, but for the most part it doesn't happen often.
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Old 07-18-2010, 05:21 AM   #19
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BTW its easy to kill an SG even if you have an engi sitting there guarding it. If there is no dispenser and no pack near, you keep tapping the sg with nails because it costs the same to fix the SG if its 1 nail or 30 nails. So you tap it with a couple of nails, let him fix it, tap it, let him fix, do this a couple of times and hes out of metal and has to run to get more. Thats when you take the SG down.
lol, try play vs an engy in a pug, you wont kill it.
Example:
Talos VS gr UGC Match

They killed my sg a min. of 5 times.

Pub SG vs Pug SG you can not compare em, if I had exo, matt and some other random dude vs 4 pubbers that SG would not go down. Even VS the best pubbers, because exo and matt would do their jobs properly. SG should not be a stand-alone unit, it should require a team effort to keep it up. But at the same team, it should be able to take some damage with an engy attacking and defending his SG. To have a SG to be UNBEATABLE with just an engy is stupid. I'm an engy and I dont even want that.
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Old 07-18-2010, 05:37 AM   #20
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I believe two main differences between current FF sentries and TFC sentries are 'acquisition' ability and damage rate.

The TFC sentry was less aware - not sure whether it rotated slower (think so) or detected enemies less quickly/accurately - but the FF sentry seems to pick targets and start shooting much more quickly.

However, the TFC sentry was much more disruptive. Once it acquired you, you were pushed/pinned/incapacitated/dead in extremely short order. It seems to take longer for even light classes to die from a FF sentry.

So that was the tradeoff - if a TFC sentry was up the area was pretty much denied (much more so than FF). But if you were fast enough or lucky enough to keep the gun from acquiring you, you could get something done. The best plan was to try and kill the gun, then run the flag.

Regarding hit points, it feels like FF sentries have slightly better durability, but not by much. As far as splash damage, I haven't noticed much difference from TFC - in either FF or TFC if you push right up against the gun you will receive rocket splash, but if you hang back a bit, all splash is blocked. I think 'clang clang' is a valid tactic, trading mobility for durability.

It might be interesting to see the following metrics documented for TFC, FF 1, 2.1:

- Rate of damage - bullets
- Rate of damage - rockets
- Average acquisition time (line of sight presentation to first hit)
- Rotation rate
- Hit points
- Range
- Build time

All in all I don't feel the FF sentry is completely out of whack, but a few gripes and proposed tweaks:

- Lock on is slightly too quick - decrease rotation rate
- Sentries are sometimes ineffective and too easy to destroy - increase damage rate and push to keep enemies who are directly engaging the gun from having plenty of time to kill it or walk out with the flag.
- Sentries sometimes go up too quickly - slightly increase build time, carefully ration available metal (map maker's responsibility). Remove rail gun metal creation.

In general I would like to see the sentry be more effective while up, but more difficult to get up - making success of the enemy team more dependent on getting the gun down and keeping it down. in TFC the HW/engy were the immoveable objects that the offense had to solve in order to succeed. IMHO the sentry is a bit anemic in FF - especially when facing the frenetically increased speed of all the offensive classes. (The HW is very anemic in FF, but that's a different thread...)

PS - I wasn't really aware of the 'pre-fire' feature - perhaps this partially explains the perception that the gun is too weak: when it looks like it's firing (and hitting, with blood) continuously on a target that it's actually not hitting at all..?
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