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Maddau

Open Letter Regarding WIP Change to Des Moines Unique Upgrade

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Dear Wargaming Development Team, @Hapa_Fodder, @Mademoisail, @Kalvothe, et al:

The proposed change to move the Enhanced Propulsion (EP) unique upgrade for the Des Moines Tier X cruiser is both counterproductive to the stated purpose of the unique upgrades, as well as duplicative to capabilities possible with stock upgrades and other ships.  This unique upgrade should be left in slot 6.

It is clear that none of the current unique upgrades which can be equipped unbalance the game (i.e. they are not overpowered) in your opinion.  If they did, they would have been disabled like the Midway and Hakuryu unique upgrades.

The official WoWs Wiki gives the purpose of unique upgrades: "The aim of these upgrades is to adjust the characteristics of a ship to make it perform better in a specific role or offer an alternative style of gameplay while keeping ships in balance with each other, even if one ship has the unique upgrade and another does not." 

The current Des Moines unique upgrade accomplishes this "aim" by specializing the ship for ambushes and surprise attacks, where sufficient concealment allows the ship to approach a contested cap or other choke point undetected while her radar consumable and the enhanced agility provided by the unique upgrade allows the ship to initiate close range combat with some possibility of surviving.  Des Moines is a fragile ship when facing BBs and torpedoes.  Her lack of a super heal (unlike her sister ship Salem) makes it very unwise to bring this ship into open water combat under 12 km range.  Only the combination of EP in slot 6 with concealment system modification (CSM1) in slot 5 enables this totally unique style of play for a high tier cruiser.  Removing this combination as a possibility is therefor counterproductive to your own stated aim of the unique upgrades.

Without the current unique upgrade in slot 6, Des Moines is best used firing over or around islands while stationary or at a medium to long range (> 15 km) using open water maneuvering.  The ship can be optimized for using island cover by equipping propulsion modification 1 (PM1) in slot 4, CSM1 in slot 5 and either gun fire control modification 2 (GFCM2) or main battery modification 3 in slot 6.  The ship can be optimized for open water by equipping PM1 or steering gears modification 1 in slot 4, steering gears modification 2 (SGM2) in slot 5, and GFCM2 in slot 6.  Moving EP to slot 6 will enable the use of acceleration juking for long range open water firing (PM1 in slot 4, EP in slot 5, GFCM2 in slot 6), providing an alternative to rapid rudder shift juking currently optimized by using SGM2 in slot 5.  However, while allowing a slightly different optimization for open water firing, moving EP to slot 5 totally rules out the unique ambush style play that is possibly with EP in slot 6.  There are many high tier heavy cruisers currently available which are as good or better at open water firing than a fully optimized DM.  Further enabling this play style for the Des Moines by providing another possible module configuration is duplicative both with other ships and with currently available stock modules.

The proposed change to the Des Moines unique upgrade should therefore be cancelled.  However, if you are determined to go forward with a change to make the upgrade "less effective", perhaps a further lessening of radar duration (currently -10%) while leaving it in slot 6 would be sufficient.  If, after receiving player feedback, you remain determined to move forward with the proposed change, I urge you to consider allowing the current unique upgrades to continue to be available unchanged to those who obtained them before the 9.5 update, with the changes impacting only those who acquire the upgrades after the update.  Given the amount of investment taken to obtain the current unique upgrades, and the precedent of allowing overperforming premium and special ships to remain in the game after they no longer are available for purchase, this is the most fair course of action for those who prefer the original performance of the unique upgrades they obtained.  I have full confidence in the development team to come up with an acceptable way of grandfathering the current upgrades.

To my fellow players:

Please educate yourself on the WIP changes (https://blog.worldofwarships.com/blog/20) and provide feedback to the development team.

Thank you!

Edited by Maddau
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9 minutes ago, Maddau said:

while allowing a slightly different optimization for open water firing, moving EP to slot 6 totally rules out the unique ambush style play that is possibly with EP in slot 5. 

You seem to have a transposition typo here (exchanging the numerals 6 and 5) that causes this sentence to conflict with your opening statement that...

9 minutes ago, Maddau said:

This unique upgrade should be left in slot 6.

 

Edited by Ensign_Cthulhu
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2 minutes ago, Ensign_Cthulhu said:

You seem to have a transposition typo here (exchanging the numerals 6 and 5) that causes this sentence to conflict with your opening statement that...

 

You're right!  Thanks!  Fixed it.

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12 minutes ago, Maddau said:

perhaps a further lessening of radar duration (currently -10%) while leaving it in slot 5 would be sufficient.

Found another one. Think the 5 should be 6 here. Sorry I didn't pick this one up on the initial pass.

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Well, being that the UU DM is my favorite cruiser, I would prefer the UU remains as is.  Add my name to the list.

@Hapa_Fodder

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12 minutes ago, Ensign_Cthulhu said:

Found another one. Think the 5 should be 6 here. Sorry I didn't pick this one up on the initial pass.

You're good at this!  Thanks again!

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Aloha,

So all the changes to the all the UUs and the new ones that coming in the future (no I cannot comment until they are publicly announced) have been changed to better balance them.

As we have stated before all the UUs are meant to be utilized to change how you employ and play the DM they are not meant to be a unilateral improvement overall. Right now, it won't necessarily do so. As you can still station like you might normally and play it the same (which is what we see) and throttle jockey and in some cases still stay hidden.

This was the reason for the change. We understand that some of the changes may not be particularly popular to some, but we would rather make them a choice not a requirement, which is pretty much the case right now.

In short, ALL the UUs are meant to change how you might play a ship and not be a standard, but that is not the case for the DM.

A good example is the Republic, main batter reload is reduced but so is your gun range. And it can take the place of a range mod that some might put on her. So it makes you have to push in closer to be effective. This changes how that ship can be employed and is more an option than a requirement.

-Hapa

 

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WG wants to give DM captains the option to camp and spam more.  Because that's what the game needs right now. 

More camping and spamming.  

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Hapa,

On 5/13/2020 at 1:29 PM, Hapa_Fodder said:

A good example is the Republic, main batter reload is reduced but so is your gun range. And it can take the place of a range mod that some might put on her. So it makes you have to push in closer to be effective. This changes how that ship can be employed and is more an option than a requirement.

Thank you for the reply.  I would just like to reemphasize that the example you sited with the Republique is very similar to the choice given with the current Des Moines unique upgrade.  Instead of range vs. reload, it is range vs agility, plus the radar duration nerf.

On 5/13/2020 at 1:29 PM, Hapa_Fodder said:

As you can still station like you might normally and play it the same (which is what we see) and throttle jockey and in some cases still stay hidden.

We both know that any ship can stealth fire if stationed out of line of sight behind an island.  Even the least stealthy and agile ship can do this.  Not sure how slot 6 enhanced propulsion makes staying hidden so much easier.  Give DM better ballistics if you want to put a stop to this.

Reading between the lines, it seems like you are admitting the change is being made because this unique upgrade has proven to be too popular among Des Moines players with above average win rates.  That they prefer the ambush playstyle enabled by the slot 6 enhanced propulsion doesn't mean that it is why they are better than average Des Moines players.  Des Moines is a strong ship and a lot of good players use her.  I would argue that EP enables a fun way for someone proficient with the ship to play.  Moving it to slot 5 makes it less possible to play in that fun way and more like a host of other ships already available.  A good DM player's win rate stays the same if they stick with the now less fun ship because they adapt to the new playstyle without EP or with in now in slot 5.  I just don't follow the logic that a popular upgrade makes in mandatory.  I don't know how you can prove that with the relevant game statistics.  There is just no way to say that good players equipping a particular upgrade is what makes them good.  It is a chicken and egg question.

Edited by Maddau
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Just now, Maddau said:

Reading between the lines 

Gotta force people off anything that's good and onto all the new stuff coming down the pike.  In F2P land, you really can't have a long lasting "optimal" ship. 

Gotta keep people on the fun and engaging treadmill.  I guess we should be thankful they let us have it for as long as they did.  We coulda gotten Henri'd right out of the gate.

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Just now, CommodoreKang said:

Gotta force people off anything that's good and onto all the new stuff coming down the pike.  In F2P land, you really can't have a long lasting "optimal" ship. 

Gotta keep people on the fun and engaging treadmill.  I guess we should be thankful they let us have it for as long as they did.  We coulda gotten Henri'd right out of the gate.

Ironically, moving the upgrade to slot 5 will make the DM play a lot more like the pre-nerf Henri, using throttle juking at longish range.

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4 minutes ago, Maddau said:

Hapa,

Thank you for the reply.  I would just like to reemphasize that the example you sited with the Republique is very similar to the choice given with the Des Moines unique upgrade.  Instead of range vs. reload, it is range vs agility, plus the radar duration nerf.

We both know that any ship can stealth fire if stationed out of line of sight behind an island.  Even the least stealthy and agile ship can do this.  Not sure how slot 6 enhanced propulsion makes staying hidden so much easier.  Give DM better ballistics if you want to put a stop to this.

Reading between the lines, it seems like you are admitting the change is being made because this unique upgrade has proven to be too popular among Des Moines players with above average win rates.  That they prefer the ambush playstyle enabled by the slot 6 enhanced propulsion doesn't mean that it is why they are better than average Des Moines players.  Des Moines is a strong ship and a lot of good players use her.  I would argue that EP enables a fun way for someone proficient with the ship to play.  Moving it to slot 5 makes it less possible to play in that fun way and more like a host of other ships already available.  A good DM player's win rate stays the same if they stick with the now less fun ship because they adapt to the new playstyle without EP or with in now in slot 5.  I just follow the logic that a popular upgrade makes in mandatory.  I don't know how you can prove that with the relevant game statistics.  There is just no way to say that good players equipping a particular upgrade is what makes them good.  It is a chicken and egg question.

You ask any competitive player what UU is 'required' for competitive play and 9/10 of them if not all of them will say the DM UU.

We have stated on several occasions over the past 6-9 months about the fact that UUs are suppose to be an option and UNIQUELY change how a ship plays, not be a requirement in order to do well. Yes you can do well in a DM without it, but with this mod, they can do much better in its current format.

Let me say this, a game mechanic doesn't make a player good. A player that knows how to use a game mechanic makes their game play even better. This was not what I said. My point is, once again, the UUs are meant to change how you employ a ship. Not be a unilateral improvement.

-Hapa

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3 minutes ago, Maddau said:

Ironically, moving the upgrade to slot 5 will make the DM play a lot more like the pre-nerf Henri, using throttle juking at longish range.

Yeah but it's a pretty awful Henri.  Not a terribly outstanding spammer either.  It's more of that middle ground where the UU made it stand out.  Now, you can just choose to play something else.

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I've thought about it. I was on the fence and hated the idea in the beginning, however I want the change now.

I'll gladly give up the concealment to put the UU in it's slot. I'll put the reload booster in slot 6 to make my ship fire even faster. Reallistically, I'm detected when I'm shooting anyway. This way I can hug an island, shoot over it or just nose out and spam. If I get shot at, I can use the UU to zip behind the island again.

 

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1 minute ago, Hapa_Fodder said:

You ask any competitive player what UU is 'required' for competitive play and 9/10 of them if not all of them will say the DM UU.

We have stated on several occasions over the past 6-9 months about the fact that UUs are suppose to be an option and UNIQUELY change how a ship plays, not be a requirement in order to do well. Yes you can do well in a DM without it, but with this mod, they can do much better in its current format.

Let me say this, a game mechanic doesn't make a player good. A player that knows how to use a game mechanic makes their game play even better. This was not what I said. My point is, once again, the UUs are meant to change how you employ a ship. Not be a unilateral improvement.

-Hapa

@Hapa_Fodder So Hapa, what you are saying is that the DM UU makes the DM better for competitive gameplay amongst the upper crust of players so WG pulled out the big nerf bat and decided to hammer the DM. Its a little bit surprising that WG obviously doesn’t care much about the average players and their viewpoints on this. Apparently only what happens on the competitive scene really matters. So that means that all the Stalingrads and Venezia’s we are seeing in the current meta are going to get nerfed as well (just joking, like the Stalingrad would ever get nerfed significantly)? Sorry if my autistic mind is seeming obtuse on this but your answers aren’t very clear. The data should be around is this ship overpowered and thereby tilting the playing field. From what I’ve seen few if any people would say the DM is dominant in ranked or even close the the Stalingrad. 

I know you are the messenger in all this but it doesn’t seem like WG if being completely transparent about what is going on here. And while I’m not a part of the “Russian Bias” crowd its getting harder to understand why good ships are getting hammered after WG said they wanted to make small incremental nerfs rather than big ones. 

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8 minutes ago, Gemlin said:

This way I can hug an island, shoot over it or just nose out and spam. If I get shot at, I can use the UU to zip behind the island again.

What do you do when the map doesn't provide any convenient islands?

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15 minutes ago, Hapa_Fodder said:

You ask any competitive player what UU is 'required' for competitive play and 9/10 of them if not all of them will say the DM UU.

Sure, this is because it allows the DM to do something no other cruiser in the game can do and possibly live to tell the tale.  It has totally succeeded in offering a unique playstyle that is fun and useful (ambushing).  That cannot be allowed because it happens to be popular?  

15 minutes ago, Hapa_Fodder said:

This was not what I said. My point is, once again, the UUs are meant to change how you employ a ship. Not be a unilateral improvement.

There are unique upgrades that are unquestionable must have upgrades.  Oddly, none of them are addressed in this patch.

1 hour ago, Maddau said:

Only the combination of EP in slot 6 with concealment system modification (CSM1) in slot 5 enables this totally unique style of play for a high tier cruiser. 

Mission accomplished!  Why take a unique, proven fun game dynamic and try to make it into pre-nerf Henri?

Edited by Maddau
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21 minutes ago, Hapa_Fodder said:

You ask any competitive player what UU is 'required' for competitive play and 9/10 of them if not all of them will say the DM UU.

And now they might be saying why bring a DM at all?

How many Henri's did those top competitive players bring? Even before this UU nerf.

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5 minutes ago, RYANMK48 said:

@Hapa_Fodder So Hapa, what you are saying is that the DM UU makes the DM better for competitive gameplay amongst the upper crust of players so WG pulled out the big nerf bat and decided to hammer the DM. Its a little bit surprising that WG obviously doesn’t care much about the average players and their viewpoints on this. Apparently only what happens on the competitive scene really matters. So that means that all the Stalingrads and Venezia’s we are seeing in the current meta are going to get nerfed as well (just joking, like the Stalingrad would ever get nerfed significantly)? Sorry if my autistic mind is seeming obtuse on this but your answers aren’t very clear. The data should be around is this ship overpowered and thereby tilting the playing field. From what I’ve seen few if any people would say the DM is dominant in ranked or even close the the Stalingrad. 

I know you are the messenger in all this but it doesn’t seem like WG if being completely transparent about what is going on here. And while I’m not a part of the “Russian Bias” crowd its getting harder to understand why good ships are getting hammered after WG said they wanted to make small incremental nerfs rather than big ones. 

No I am not saying that, I am saying that as an example that is over performing (hence the balance changes) it is a must have to people that use her in competitive play. AGAIN, this was not the intended use for these. Please do not put words in my mouth.

Data was gathered and for ANYTHING in the game, if it is over performing, balance changes occur over time.

3 minutes ago, Maddau said:

 

Sure, this is because it allows the DM to do something no other cruiser in the game can do and possibly live to tell the tale.  It has totally succeeded in offering a unique playstyle that is fun and useful (cap contesting).  That cannot be allowed because it happens to be popular?  

There are unique upgrades that are unquestionable must have upgrades.  Oddly, none of them are addressed in this patch.

Mission accomplished!  Why take a unique, proven fun game dynamic and try to make it into pre-nerf Henri?

These are just the first wave of UU announcements, there are more UUs coming and more changes coming, we also said this.

As for "make it into pre-nerf Henri?" this is not true, as Henry players VERY different to DM. You are comparing apples and oranges, they do not compare at all in play style or performance on a lot of levels.

-Hapa

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So, WG knew what they were doing with the DM Legendary when they put it in.  They knew it would be "required".  And they knew since it was "required" that a whole pile of players would grind and grind and grind and spend money along the way to get it.

What we can surmise at this point is that most of the players who would spend money on that grind have already spent it.  And now WG needs to change it to make it "balanced" and "choice driven".

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The UPSIDE to all of this tho is now we don't have to worry about having to re-grind lines to get research points to get the UU's that are now rendered not useful (especially for the cost in time for the re-grind).  I think that balances out the stupid idea in the first place of making someone get to 10 only to have to redo lines to get the reward of a UU.

What WG SHOULD HAVE DONE was leave it how it was. You grind to 10, and then it opens up missions for a UU. THEN if you wanted to re-grind to get a REALLY special upgrade THEN you re-grind for it.  It's like these commanders for 9389378938973 coal. It's the same principle.

 

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18 minutes ago, Hapa_Fodder said:

it is a must have to people that use her in competitive play.

This seems an arbitrary standard for "overperforming".  I'm sure using Halsey/Doe/Ovechkin is also a must have on competitive DM because of improved expert marksman.  They actually are measurable better at something.  They are okay, though?  I very much doubt players are staying away from clan battles because they don't have enhanced propulsion, but prove me wrong if you have the data to back that up.

Something proven popular, fun and unique (again, the stated official goal of a unique upgrade) must be changed to make probably less fun, certainly less popular (concealment is really the must-have module for most cruiser players), and unquestionably less unique apparently because of a poll done of competitive players?  What is that, like 10% of those who play?

Edited by Maddau

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1 hour ago, Hapa_Fodder said:

Aloha,

So all the changes to the all the UUs and the new ones that coming in the future (no I cannot comment until they are publicly announced) have been changed to better balance them.

As we have stated before all the UUs are meant to be utilized to change how you employ and play the DM they are not meant to be a unilateral improvement overall. Right now, it won't necessarily do so. As you can still station like you might normally and play it the same (which is what we see) and throttle jockey and in some cases still stay hidden.

This was the reason for the change. We understand that some of the changes may not be particularly popular to some, but we would rather make them a choice not a requirement, which is pretty much the case right now.

In short, ALL the UUs are meant to change how you might play a ship and not be a standard, but that is not the case for the DM.

A good example is the Republic, main batter reload is reduced but so is your gun range. And it can take the place of a range mod that some might put on her. So it makes you have to push in closer to be effective. This changes how that ship can be employed and is more an option than a requirement.

-Hapa

 

The Repub UU is still going to be absolute trash. I don't get why WG expects the players to regrind this much for a UU that's so bad. 

So are UUs for the ships that don't have them something you can confirm is in the works? Such as Haragumo and Daring? Will non-silver tier X ships get UUs? 

@Hapa_Fodder

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1 minute ago, Maddau said:

This seems an arbitrary standard for "overperforming".  I'm sure using Halsey/Doe/Ovechkin is also a must have on competitive DM because of improved expert marksman.  They actually are measurable better at something.  They are okay, though.  Something proven popular, fun and unique (again, the stated official goal of a unique upgrade) must be changed to make probably less fun, certainly less popular (concealment is really the must-have module for most cruiser players), and unquestionably less unique apparently because of a poll done of competitive players?  What is that, like 10% of those who play?

shh, they'll nerf the captains some kind of way next based on their logic. haha. :Smile_facepalm:

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